Oct 20, 2021 @ 11:18

DOJ releases ‘patchy’ information on 52 cases involving drug war deaths

The Department of Justice on Wednesday released information on the 52 drug war cases involving ‘unnecessary deaths’ during the Duterte administration’s bloody war on drugs.

The DOJ came up with a ‘table/matrix’ concerning ‘details,’ like names of victims, docket numbers, places and dates of the incidents, and the panel’s summary of observations.

Also, the table contained the recommendation of the Philippine National Police Intefnal Affairs Service, that ranges from dismissal, demotion, and suspension of the lawmen involved.

Justice Undersecretary Neal Bainto said the decision to release the information was part of its recognition of the importance of transparency in its review process.

Bainto said the purposes of making some information about the cases public are: 1) to inform the families and loved ones of the deceased suspects that the circumstances surrounding the case are undergoing investigation for possible criminal liability on the part of policemen involved and 2) to invite witnesses or persons with first-hand information helpful to the resolution of the cases to come forward and give their statements.

The DOJ leads a panel of several government agencies, including law enforcement units, in reviewing 5,655 anti-drug operations that resulted in deaths to see whether to file charges against the police officers involved.

The DOJ has been granted unprecedented access to PNP’s records of deaths during the government’s war on drugs.

Recently, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra tasked the National Bureau of Investigation to conduct a case build-up on the 52 cases against 154 policemen tagged in ‘tokhang cases.’

In those 52 cases, the PNP Internal Affairs Service had found liabilities against policemen involved in the campaign to eradicate drugs.

The cases involved findings of administrative liability against police personnel for alleged misconduct committed in the course of anti-illegal drug operations. #

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