Pangilinan slams police action in Failon case

April 17, 2009

By: Maila Ager
April 17, 2009

MANILA, Philippines—Senator Francis “‘Kiko” Pangilinan has strongly condemned the “reckless manner” of the police in handling the case of the alleged suicide of the wife of ABS-CBN news anchor Ted Failon.

Pangilinan said the warrantless arrests of family members and Failon’s household helpers are “without basis and patently illegal.”

“The arrests made do not fall under warrantless arrests enumerated in Section 5, Rule 113 of the revised rules of criminal procedure,” he said in a statement.

“The alleged crime committed by the relatives is not considered as continuing crimes to allow warrantless arrests. The arrests made are without basis and are patently illegal,” he said.

“Were they read their Miranda Rights? Bakit binabatukan at hinihila ang mga kapamilya [why were the family members manhandled]?” the senator asked.

Pangilinan said the treatment of the case by the police, who were supposed to be protectors of civil rights, was “devoid of humane and just conduct.”

“Does the QCPD (Quezon City Police District) have an ax to grind against Ted Failon? Buwelta ba ito sa pagpapalabas ng ABS-CBN sa video ng mga pulis na lumalabag sa human rights ng mga suspect na ni-rub-out sa [Was this their revenge after ABS-CBN aired the video showing the police violate human rights of suspects in a rubout on] NIA Road, Quezon City?,” he asked.

Pangilinan also questioned the reported attempts by the police to perform a paraffin test on Failon’s wife, Trinidad “Trina” Etong, even before she expired Thursday night at a hospital in Quezon City.

“Bakit hinahayaan ng PNP na maging ganito ang asal ng mga pulis sa Quezon City? Wala bang konsiderasyon sa nararamdaman ng pamilya ang mga law enforcers natin? Natural masama loob ng mga kamag-anakan, magiging hysterical talaga yang mga yan [Why did the PNP tolerate this attitude of Quezon City policemen. Do our law enforcers have no consideration for the feelings of the family members? The relatives would naturally have ill feelings and become hysterical],” he said.

“Even now, as the family is grieving, the police seemingly are bullying into their custody family members and households. Do they intend to coerce answers from these people? Is this how our law enforcers deal with cases? This is condemnable!” he added.

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