The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) is deeply concern about the continued detention of a man that the police have arrested as a suspect in the Maguindanao Massacre in place of the real accuse. The police harassed his common-law wife by threatening her into admitting that her husband and the person they were to arrest are the same person despite their names and faces being mismatched.
CASE DETAILS: (Based on the documentation by the Moro Women’s Center, Inc.)
On November 10, 2010, Ramon Dadulo was taken, supposedly for ‘questioning’, by policemen attached to the Municipal Police Station of Glan, Sarangani province. But he was never released from police custody until he was transported to Camp Bagong Diwa, Bicutan in Taguig City where he is presently detained.
To legally justify his detention Dadulo, a faith healer in his village, the police harassed his common-law wife, Lilibeth Lombone, for her to “admit that the man in the picture, Nasser Malaguia, and my live-in partner Ramon Dadulo are one and the same person” subject of the arrest order. They coerced Lilibeth whom they summoned at their police station in signing the statement they have already prepared for her.
Before signing her statement, Lilibeth did told the police that Ramon was “not involved with the Maguindanao Massacre” and the photograph of Nasser Malaguia, one of the accused in the Maguindanao massacre, they showed to her is not Ramon. But Joel, chief of police of the said station, told her to just follow his orders. Lilibeth was so “afraid for my life that I agreed to sign the affidavit they prepared”. She could not be bothered to read the statement because “they refused to let me go” and she was “surrounded by the police officers who carried their respective firearms”.
From November 10 to 18, Ramon was held in police custody at the Municipal Police Station in Maasim, Sarangani and later temporarily at the regional headquarters of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG XII) in General Santos City. On November 12, his physical examination revealed he had injuries received while in police custody.
Police ignore pleas to prove his real identity
When his wife, Lilibeth, learned on November 18 that Ramon was to be transported to Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City, she asked the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) in General Santos City to intervene to prevent his transfer. Here, Ramon’s family submitted his identity documents to PAO to prove his real identity.
However, despite the PAO’s intervention, by personally visiting and speaking to Police Superintendent Bowen Joey Masawding of the CIDG XII, at their headquarters, asking them to “defer his transfer and asked for time in order to submit all the documents to prove his identity” he told them he could not do anything because he is not in charge of his custody but the Municipal Police Station of Glan.
Upon P/Supt. Masawding’s instruction, the PAO lawyers went to the Police Regional Office (PRO XII) of the Philippine National Police (PNP) in Barangay Tambler, General Santos City where they spoke to Police Chief Inspector (PCI) Mahar Villasis, an administrative staff for the PNP regional director. Here, he informed them that “they received no information regarding the arrest and possible transfer to Manila of said detainee”.
Here, Villasis told them he would inform P/Supt. Quidilla, the PNP provincial director of Sarangani on the matter. He told the PAO and the detainee’s family to present Ramon’s identity documents to him because “they are the one directly responsible for his arrest”. They had to travel nearly two hours to the Sarangani Police Provincial Office (SPPO). Here, they met Senior Police Officer 1 (SPO1) Rivera, chief of clerk, who also “assured that no scheduled detainee transport to Manila involving Maguindanao Massacre”. SP01 Rivera then told them to return to their office the following day, November 19.
But on that day, November 19, Ramon was transported to Manila. The PAO has written a summary of its report on this, to read see: Summary Report
When the PAO lawyers contacted PCI Villasis “to clarify us to who has direct control and supervision over Mr. Dadulo’s detention” he told them that he could not help because “their boss is having conference”. When asked when his boss free to talk he “would not comment and instead instructed us to just go to their office”.
When follow-up calls were made, this time PCI Villasis had already excused himself, the PNP regional and the provincial office, any responsibility on Ramon’s detention. He argued that it was the CIDG XII, not them, who had direct “control and supervision over the detention of Mr. Dadulo”; and that they could not do anything to defer the transfer. PCI Villasis version, however, contradicts to what the CIDG XII told PAO and Ramon’s family.
Therefore, all the PNP units, the CIDG XII, SPPO and the PRO XII of the PNP, knows full well to the questions that the man, Ramon Didulo, in the custody of the CIDG XII, is not the Nasser Malaguia that was subject of their arrest.
However, it was obvious that all of them either deliberately deceived the family or refuse to take any responsibility in making a decision to the questions of the legality of Ramon’s arrest and detention. As a result of their actions, Ramon and his family were effectively deprived of possibilities of judicial remedy, like filing petition for writ of habeas corpus, at the early stage.
Here, the PAO and Ramon’s family were unable to submit their petition that could have questioned the legality of his detention at the court in General Santos City. It would have been better for his family because the place is geographically closer to their home but due to his transfer his family now find it difficult to follow up his case.
A witness support Ramon’s alibi
Apart from Ramon’s wife, Herminigildo Olog, a village chief in their community, signed a statement to support Ramon’s alibi. He stated that he personally saw him in Malapatan, Sarangani treating one of his ailing constituents, Lina Mante.
Thus, Olog’s statement gives an effect that physically it could have been impossible for him to be in Maguindanao because the two places are far from each other by distance. He also confirmed that he has personally known Ramon since February 2009 until January 2010. His statement was no longer heard because Ramon was already transferred to Metro Manila.
Wife retracted her statement
Ramon’s common-law wife, Lilibeth, also retracted from her earlier coerced statement to the police by signing another statement on December 6, 2010 effectively denying all its content that he is Nasser Malaguia, in which the basis of the police in legally justifying their arrest and continued detention of Ramon. An excerpt of her statement is below:
“f) …the Chief of Police of the said Station, Sir Joel came inside the office, he asked me where was Ramon Dadulo in November 2009; If he had made some travels that time; If he was involved in the Maguindanao Massacre. I answered him that Ramon is not involved with the Maguindanao Massacre. Sir Joel; told me that I should admit that the man in the picture, Nasser M. Malaguia , and my live in partner Ramon Dadulo are one and the same person. That I should execute an affidavit and signed it to that effect and then everything will be okay;
g) He then left me to think about it. But some of the police officers continued to harass me. I wanted to go home but they refuse to let me go;
h) I was surrounded by the police officers who carried their respective firearms. I was afraid for my life that I agreed to sing the affidavit they prepared;
i) I did not even read the document, I just signed it and that was the only time the police officers allowed me to leave.
4. I attest to the veracity of the foregoing facts to the best of my knowledge and belief that the document I signed at the Police Station was done because of feat from bodily harm as the police officers surrounded me and continued to insist that I signed the document.”
Please write letters to the concerned authorities listed below expressing your concern about this case.
The AHRC has also written letters to the Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention for their intervention in this case.
To support this case, please click here: SEND APPEAL LETTER
PHILIPPINES: A man is detained for Maguindanao massacre in someone’s stead
Name of the detainee: Ramon Dadulo is presently detained at Camp Bagong Diwa, Taguig City in place of the real accused Nasser Malaguia. Malaguia is one of the suspects in the Maguindanao Massacre
Unit of the police who arrested and detain him:
Municipal Police Station of Glan, Sarangani; Sarangani Police Provincial Office (SPPO), Police Regional Office (PRO) of the Philippine National Police (PNP), Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG XII)
Date of incident: November 10, 2010 to present
Place of his arrest: At his home in Glan, Sarangani
I am writing to draw your attention to the case of Ramon Didulo, a man whom the police have arrested in someone’s stead in November 10, 2010. When he was arrested, Didulo was summoned supposedly for questioning; however, the policemen attached to the Municipal Police Station of Glan coerced his common-law wife to sign a statement that he was Nasser Malaguia, the person subject of their arrest.
On December 6, 2010, Ramon’s wife, Lilibeth, executed another statement invalidating the statement that the police had earlier coerce her to sign and had been used a legal justification for them to continuously detain him. She also provided identity documents, like Ramon’s birth certificate, his marriage contract and secured testimonies from their village chief affirming his real identity.
Prior to Lilibeth’s retraction of her statement, on November 18, 2010 she has already questioned the legality of her husband’s detention, with the help of the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO), at the CIDG XII before his transfer to Taguig City. She has asked the PNP provincial and the regional leadership to postpone the transfer her husband so that they can submit judicial petition in court to prove the real identify of her husband.
But they were deliberately deceived by Police Chief Inspector (PCI) Mahar Villasis, an administrative staff for the PNP regional director and Police Officer 1 (SPO1) Rivera, chief of clerk. It was PCI Villasis and SP01 Rivera who had given Lilibeth an assurance that supposedly there was no scheduled transfer of detainees, including Ramon, to Metro Manila.
But contrary to what PCI Villasis and SP01 Rivera have assured that Ramon would not be transported to Manila, he was indeed transported on November 19, 2010. Thus, his transfer had effectively deprived him and his family from seeking judicial remedies, like filing petition for writ of habeas corpus, at the local court in General Santos City. None of the policemen and their respective unit whom Lilibeth had spoken to has taken responsibility to what has happened.
At present, Ramon is presently detained at the Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City supposedly to be tried for Maguindanao massacre. The serious question to the legality of his arrest and detention in someone’s stead has not been resolved. His family, who lives in Glan, Sarangani–about two hours by plane from Manila–could hardly do anything to help his release due to the absence of adequate and effective legal assistance.
Also, I have learned that while Ramon was in police custody, he suffered injuries as it was revealed in the physical examination report on November 12, 2010. I urged you to also investigate allegations that he had been tortured in custody. The medical report, however, is not thorough as what should have been required by the Anti-torture Act of 2009.
I also urged you to investigate the actions of the police, particularly PCI Villasis and SP01 Rivera, for deliberately deceiving the victim’s wife and his family which resulted to him deprived of any possibility of seeking judicial remedies. The action of the police was matter is a serious breached to the person’s Constitutional right to seek judicial remedy in questioning the legality of his arrest and detention.
I trust that you take immediate action in this case.
PLEASE SEND YOUR LETTERS TO:
1. Mr. Benigno Aquino III
Republic of the Philippines
JP Laurel Street, San Miguel
Fax: +63 2 736 1010
Tel: +63 2 735 6201 / 564 1451 to 80
2. Ms. Loretta Ann Rosales
Commission on Human Rights
SAAC Bldg., Commonwealth Avenue
U.P. Complex, Diliman
Fax: +63 2 929 0102
Tel: +63 2 928 5655 / 926 6188
3. Director General Nicanor Bartolome
Chief, Philippine National Police (PNP)
Camp General Rafael Crame
Fax: +63 2724 8763
Tel: +63 2 726 4361/4366/8763
4. Ms. Leila de Lima
Department of Justice (DOJ)
DOJ Bldg., Padre Faura
Fax: +63 2 521 1614
5. Mr. Emilio Gonzalez
Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for the Military
and Other Law Enforcement Offices
3rd Floor, Ombudsman Bldg., Agham Road, Diliman
1104 Quezon City
Fax: +63 2 926 8747
Tel: +63 2 926 9032
Urgent Appeals Desk
Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) (email@example.com)