Cebu News

3 foreigners face child abuse raps

Raymund Catindig - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - Police are scheduled to file charges Monday against three foreign nationals arrested at the Cebu South Bus Terminal last Thursday.

Chief Insp. Arieza Otida of the Women and Children Protection Desk of the Cebu City Police Office said the three allegedly violated the Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation, and Discrimination Act for bringing a minor girl who is not related to any of them.

The three are detained at the Carbon Police Station.

They were supposed to go the Kawasan Falls in Badian town together with three girls when a member of the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) saw them at the terminal.

"Usa sa mga babaye nga kuyog sa maong langyaw atol sa ilang  plano nga pagbisita unta sa Kawasan Falls usa ka minor de edad ug lumolupyo sa usa sa mga Barangay sa Dakbayan sa Sugbo," Otida said.

One of the foreigners told The Freeman they were not aware that one of the girls was a minor because their contact informed them the girls were all of legal age.

He said they intend to settle the matter amicably because they are scheduled to return to their country on June 10 and their families are not aware of what happened to them.

Section 10 (b) of Republic Act 7610 provides, "any person who shall keep or have in his company a minor, twelve (12) years or under or who in ten (10) years or more his junior in any public or private place, hotel, motel, beer joint, discotheque, cabaret, pension house, sauna or massage parlor, beach and/or other tourist resort or similar places."

The provision, however, does not apply to "any person who is related within the fourth degree of consanguinity or affinity or any bond recognized by law, local custom and tradition or acts in the performance of a social, moral or legal duty" to the minor.

The IACAT has requested that the names of the suspects be withheld pending the filing of charges and until investigation into the incident is completed.  (FREEMAN)






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