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DOJ eases parole, clemency rules for convicts
Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra approved on April 15 a resolution relaxing the procedures for the release of elderly and sick inmates.
The STAR/Rudy Santos, file

DOJ eases parole, clemency rules for convicts

Evelyn Macairan, Edu Punay (The Philippine Star) - April 23, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Justice (DOJ) has relaxed the rules for parole and executive clemency for convicts amid the possible outbreak of the coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 in jails.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra approved on April 15 a resolution relaxing the procedures for the release of elderly and sick inmates.

However, the resolution excludes heinous crime, high-risk and drug convicts, according to Justice Undersecretary Markk Perete.

Perete said qualified to apply for clemency are convicts aged 65 and above, sick and those who have served time for at least five years.

The Department of Justice said the move aims to address overcrowding in prisons and ensure the health of inmates. 

Quezon City Rep. Precious Castelo proposed that the inmates be tested first for COVID-19 prior to their release.

“The government should determine if the inmates to be released are COVID-19 carriers before they are sent home to prevent them from spreading the virus to their families and the community,” she said.

DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE MENARDO GUEVARRA PAROLE
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