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Pemberton to remain at Camp Aguinaldo

(The Philippine Star) - December 1, 2015 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines – US Marine Private First Class Joseph Scott Pemberton will remain in detention at the Armed Forces headquarters at Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City despite his conviction yesterday for the killing of Filipino transgender Jeffrey “Jennifer” Laude in October last year.

The only change is that personnel of the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor), which has jurisdiction over national prisoners, will now guard Pemberton at Camp Aguinaldo, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ).

Olongapo City Regional Trial Court Judge Roline Ginez-Jabalde originally ordered Pemberton to be incarcerated at the New Bilibid Prisons in Muntinlupa.

But late yesterday, the judge amended it and ordered Pemberton to be “temporarily confined or detained” at the AFP Custodial Center at Camp Aguinaldo.

She also ordered Eduardo Oban Jr., executive director of the Philippine Commission on Visiting Forces (PCVF) to submit within five days a memorandum of agreement or written agreement between duly authorized representatives of the US and Philippine governments on Pemberton’s place of detention.

“Pemberton will remain at Camp Aguinaldo guarded by the Philippine National Police and BuCor personnel until his appeal is decided with finality by the court,” the DOJ said.

Pemberton has been detained in a US-controlled facility at the Mutual Defense Board inside Camp Aguinaldo prior to the promulgation of his case.

The DOJ hinted on the possibility of Pemberton being transferred to another detention facility as provided under the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) between the Philippines and US.

“In any case, his detention shall at all times be carried out within Philippine territory, under the guard by and in line with existing regulations of the BuCor,” it added.

The DOJ cited as basis for the detention of Pemberton the Feb. 11, 2009 ruling of the Supreme Court on the case of US soldier Daniel Smith, who was convicted for raping Suzette Nicolas alias “Nicole” in Subic in 2005.

For its part, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said under the VFA, the confinement or detention by Philippine authorities of US servicemen shall be carried out in facilities agreed on by the Philippine and US governments.

“As per DOJ announcement, the agreed location is at Camp Aguinaldo,” it said.

Press attaché Kurt Hoyer of the US embassy in Manila said the embassy has yet to issue a statement on the conviction of Pemberton.

Armed Forces chief Gen. Hernando Iriberri said the military would respect and abide by the orders of the court insofar as Pemberton’s place of detention is concerned.

ACIRC ARMED FORCES BUREAU OF CORRECTIONS CAMP AGUINALDO CUSTODIAL CENTER DANIEL SMITH DEPARTMENT OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE DETENTION EDUARDO OBAN JR. PEMBERTON
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