PHILIPPINES: Podcast - Arrests of policemen for robbery, illegal drugs & rape
(Hong Kong, January 30, 2012) In this episode of cast, the AHRC comments on separate incidents involving the arrest of three policemen for charges of robbery, illegal drugs and the rape of a minor.
In this report (time code: 14:05- 16:45) a police officer in Tacloban City, in the Visayas, is detained after he was arrested for allegedly robbing two government employees. He is under preventive suspension for 90 days, disarmed of his service firearm and is subjected to summary hearings for an administrative offense of grave misconduct in addition to criminal charges of robbery laid on him.
In another report (time code: 09:40-10:53) in provinces of Sultan Kudarat and North Cotabato, in Mindanao, two police officers were arrested in separate incidents. In the first incident, a police officer was held while he was smuggling illegal drugs; and in another arrest a policeman wanted for raping a minor.
In this cast, the AHRC discusses how these arrests of policemen, who are attached to the policing institution in which victims of violations seeks remedies by complaining, had already have serious impact on protection of rights in the country. The policemen play a very important role, not only in investigating cases, but also in ensuring victims would have the trust and confidence in making their complaint to them.
The duty of the police is to enforce law, protects lives and properties; they investigate to ensure those who break the law are identified and held to account by way of an effective investigation. However, when it is the policemen who are supposed to enforce laws and protect lives are the ones involved in committing crimes, it raises a serious question on whether rights could be protected in their society.
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