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Fivefold increase in lawyers slain under Duterte watch

Evelyn Macairan - The Philippine Star
Fivefold increase in lawyers slain under Duterte watch
In a statement, the IBP counted 63 lawyers killed during the term of President Duterte, including the more recent victims deputy city prosecutor Victor Begtang Jr. of Ilagan City in Isabela and Sitti Gilda Mahinay-Sapie of Davao City.
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MANILA, Philippines — The Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) said 63 members of the legal profession were killed during the first five years of the Duterte administration a 500-percent increase in incidents compared to previous administrations.

In a statement, the IBP counted 63 lawyers killed during the term of President Duterte, including the more recent victims deputy city prosecutor Victor Begtang Jr. of Ilagan City in Isabela and Sitti Gilda Mahinay-Sapie of Davao City.

The IBP expressed its condolences to the family of Begtang and assured his heirs of the immediate processing and release of benefits due them. It also vowed to assist and monitor the investigation and prosecution of the case so perpetrators can be identified and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

“This now makes the death toll of lawyers killed during this administration at 63. Indeed, the numbers, as these now stand under the present administration, have alarmingly increased by as much as 500 percent,” the group said.

IBP said it was appalled by the increasing number of assassinations of lawyers, judges and prosecutors during Duterte’s term – a “stark contrast” to the average of not more than 10 incidents recorded in each administration.

The leadership of the lawyers’ group gave assurance that they would continue to work with the Supreme Court, Department of Justice, National Bureau of Investigation and Philippine National Police to address these rising attacks against its members.

It also called upon the police and investigative agencies to formulate and implement specific measures to improve the security of lawyers, judges and prosecutors and to expeditiously resolve investigations on these killings so that the perpetrators are swiftly and truly held accountable.

DUTERTE ADMINISTRATION LAWYERS
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