Sep 9, 2020 @ 11:56
Guevarra defends Duterte anew over Pemberton pardon
Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra on Wednesday defended anew President Duterte in pardoning former US Marine Joseph Scott Pemberton, saying the populist leader has pardoned hundreds of convicts since he was elected.
“Since the time that the President assumed his position as president, there was something like 139 pardons already,” Guevarra said
“And this is a lot more than the total number of pardons given during the previous administration,” said.
Guevarra issued the statement during an interview over ANC’s Headstart with veteran broadcaster Karen Davila.
“So many of our fellow Filipinos have received the benefit of the President’s executive clemency in the form of pardons, commutation of sentences, etc. As a matter of fact, konti lang ang foreigners,” Guevarra said.
President Duterte announced on Monday night that he was pardoning Pemberton who was convicted for killing transgender woman Jennifer Laude in 2014.
According to presidential spokesperson Harry Roque, Pemberton can now be released from jail and his good conduct time allowance (GCTA) is no longer an issue.
“Ibig sabihin po niyan, makalalaya na si Pemberton, wala na pong issue kung siya ay entitled sa GCTA, wala na pong issue kung applicable sa kanya yung batas dahil hindi siya nakulong sa national penitentiary. Binura na po ng Presidente kung ano pa yung parusa na dapat ipapataw kay Pemberton,” Roque told reporters.
“Ang di po nabura ng Presidente, yung conviction ni Pemberton, mamatay-tao pa rin po siya, pero kung ano yung karagdagang parusa pa, binura na ng Presidente,” he pointed out.
Last weej, the Olongapo City regional trial court has ordered the release of Pemberton.
This as the court granted Pemberto’s bid for release after serving 10 years, one month, and 10 days that included his good conduct time allowance.
Also, the court noted that Pemberton has already paid in full the monetary damages to slain transgender woman Jennifer Laude’s family amounting to P4. 6 million.
Prior to his release, Pemberton served five years and eight months of his original sentence of 10 years. But because of the GCTA rule, 1,548 days or more than four years were credited to him, hence, Pemberton accumulated 10 years, one month, and 10 days.
Recently, the Supreme Court granted Pemberton’s motion withdrawing his petition for review seeking to overturn his conviction.
Pemberton asked the high court to review the Court of Appeal’s decision affirming the ruling of conviction handed down by the Olongapo City RTC.