SC urged: Allow Pinay on death row to testify vs recruiters
Sheila Crisostomo (The Philippine Star) - September 14, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — A group yesterday asked the Supreme Court to allow Mary Jane Veloso, who is on death row in Indonesia, to testify via written deposition against those who recruited her.

In a statement, Migrante International said Veloso’s testimony will strengthen the charges of human trafficking, illegal recruitment and estafa filed against her recruiters Ma. Cristina Sergio and Julius Lacanilao with the Nueva Ecija regional trial court.  

“As a victim of human trafficking, it is incumbent that Veloso be allowed to participate in the legal process as it is the only way for the judicial authoritities to accord her the chance to see that perpetrators are brought to justice,” the group said.

The last hearing for the presentation of prosecution witnesses is set on Sept. 26.

Veloso was arrested in Indonesia in 2009 and meted a death sentence after heroin was found in her luggage.

Her camp argued that she was not a drug dealer but a victim of trafficking but this was junked by the court.

“Languishing in prison for almost a decade, Veloso is currently being made to pay for a crime she did not commit,” Migrante said.

The group added that what is the “worst” is that her “vital testimony against a big international drug trafficking syndicate remains unheard by entities in our very own criminal justice system.”

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