Tag Archives: NBI

[Statement] No to criminalization of free speech -NUJP

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines denounces the criminalization of free speech and expression by the National Bureau of Investigation as disclosed by human rights lawyer Chel Diokno.

News reports quoted Diokno as saying he had taken on the case of a netizen who had been subpoenaed by the National Bureau of Investigation to appear before its Cybercrime Division to explain a Facebook post “concerning an alleged misused (sic) of government funds,” which supposedly violated Article 154 of the Revised Penal Code, or the “unlawful use of means of publication and unlawful utterances.” And subsequent reports said the NBI had sent subpoeanas to the owners of 27 social media accounts they were monitoring for supposedly spreading fake news about the health crisis.

We agree with Diokno’s contention that ‘di na makatao ang nangyayari. Ang dami nang namamatay, pati frontliners, pero imbis na COVID, kritiko ang gusto nilang puksain.’

Democracy can only thrive amid the free exchange of and respect for ideas and opinions, including those we may vehemently disagree with.

That ordinary citizens may now find themselves summoned by law enforcement and ordered to explain their sentiments and statements will certainly send a chilling message: “Speak at your own risk.”

And it is but a short step from this to targeting critical reporting and commentary.

As we have said time and again, in times of crisis, MORE, not less, independent journalism is needed. The same goes, if not more so, with free speech and expression.

This is no longer media’s fight alone. This should be everyone’s cause. Every voice we allow to be silenced is one voice closer to our own.

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[In the news] Military trained bagani tribal warriors – say NBI agent, ex-gov Piñol -MindaNews

Military trained bagani tribal warriors – say NBI agent, ex-gov Piñol
By Keith Bacongco
May 26 2013

MindaNews

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 26 May) – A lawyer of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) revealed before the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) that the military was the one that trained the baganis (tribal warriors) so they could help in the counter-insurgency campaign.

Even former North Cotabato governor Emmanuel Piñol corroborated the NBI lawyer’s statement, but he stressed that the purpose of the bagani is to defend the territories of the indigenous people.

He admitted that the baganis were trained during his term as governor, from 1998 to 2007.

Wenceslao Galendez, agent of the NBI’s North Eastern Mindanao Office based in Cagayan de Oro City, told the CHR panel that the bagani was led by Roelito Ayupat Gawilan, who is the barangay captain of Barangay Sinoda in Kitaotao, Bukidnon.

The CHR, led by chair Loretta Rosales, was in the city on May 22 to 24 for a three-day inquiry on the killing of Italian missionary Fausto Tentorio in Arakan, North Cotabato in October 2011.

Read full article @www.mindanews.com

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[In the news] Ilog officials to hold mass for ‘Justice for Mayor Paul’ | Sun.Star

Ilog officials to hold mass for ‘Justice for Mayor Paul’ | Sun.Star.

By Teresa Ellera
August 6, 2012

OFFICIALS of the municipality of Ilog along with the officials of the entire 15 barangays in town will hold a mass calling for “Justice for Mayor Paul Alvarez” at the town’s public plaza today, Monday.

The mass is in support for Alvarez, as the people of Ilog rally behind him against accusations made by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) that the mayor is the mastermind behind the killing of Kabankalan Regional Trial Court Judge Henry Arles last April 24.

Alvarez was tagged as the mastermind based on the affidavits of the three self-confessed assassins who are now at the custody of the NBI in Manila.

Meanwhile, the family of the three members of the RPA-ABB tagged as suspects in the ambush-slay of Arles is challenging the NBI to show the three in public to refute allegations that they were tortured into admitting the crime.

They also slammed the NBI for not allowing their lawyer to see the three in their detention cell.

The three suspects, namely Jessie Daguia, Alejandro Capunong and Eddie Fortunado, are detained at the NBI-Manila allegedly for security reasons, said NBI chief lawyer Ferdinand Lavin.

The three were first slapped with illegal possession of firearms charges by the NBI filed at the local court here to allegedly justify their detention. A murder complaint was also filed against the three before the Department of Justice (DOJ) in Manila.

Read full article @ www.sunstar.com.ph

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[Press Release] Investigation in killing of Fr. Fausto must include new evidences, demands German Advocacy group -Action Network Human Rights -Philippines

Investigation in killing of Fr. Fausto must include new evidences, demands German Advocacy group

Fr. Fausto Tentorio. File photo source: http://www.preda.org

On October 17, 2011 Italian activist priest Fausto Tentorio was shot and killed by a gunman inside his parish compound in the town of Arakan, North Cotabato, in Mindanao. A local paramilitary group Bagani (“tribal warriors”), reportedly under military control of the 57th Infantry Battalion, is allegedly responsible for the killing of Father Fausto.

However, despite various sworn testimonies by different witnesses about the involvement of Bagani leader Jan Corbala alias “Kumander Iring” and other suspects as plotters of the killing, they have not been included in the government’s investigation.

Nine months after the killing there is growing criticism that these suspects have been deliberately left out of the case because of their military ties.

Further, none of the four suspects the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has recommended to file charges against have been arrested. There are also numerous grave threats against the witnesses, their families and those who try to pursue the case.

“These are all attempts to hamper an impartial, fair and independent investigation”, criticizes Maike Grabowski, coordinator of the German-based Action Network Human Rights-Philippines (AMP).
“We see with deep concern, that paramilitary groups like the Bagani Group seem to be protected by influential people and therefore above the law“, says Jochen Motte, chairman of the German lobby group.

According to the eight member organizations of the AMP the concerned agencies, like the Department of Justice, the responsible government prosecutors and the NBI have to show more sincerity and determination towards the conviction of the perpetrators of gross human rights violations and the masterminds in the back, regardless of their political protection or affiliation. This will be the only chance to break through the climate of impunity and help the citizens of the Philippines to regain trust in the rule of law.

The AMP is therefore calling on the Philippine government to:

– Order all government agencies to expand and complete the investigation, taking into account the alleged involvement of the Bagani group and the 57th Infantry Battalion officers with command responsibility during the time of the killing.
– Disarm the Bagani or Alamara armed groups and all other paramilitary groups in the country

– Provide adequate security for witnesses and their families

– Investigate all threats against witnesses, their families and supporters of the “Fr. Fausto “Pops” Movement”

– Direct the NBI to investigate those who pressured one witness to give a false statement.

Contact Person

Maike Grabowski, Action Network Human Rights-Philippines
grabowski@asienhaus.de, +49201-8303828

About the Action Network Human Rights -Philippines

The Action Network Human Rights – Philippines (AMP) promotes lobby- and information work in Germany regarding the human rights situation in the Philippines. Through its office, the network coordinates publications, events and lobby activities. Target groups are political decision makers, human rights defenders and social activists as well as the media in Germany and Europe.

Member organizations are Amnesty International Germany, Diakonie / Bread for the World, Church Development Service (EED), Misereor, Missio, philippinenbüro and United Evangelical Mission (UEM). The main focuses of the network are extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances.

Press Release 23 July 2012

All submissions are republished and redistributed in the same way that it was originally published online and sent to us. We may edit submission in a way that does not alter or change the original material.

Human Rights Online Philippines does not hold copyright over these materials. Author/s and original source/s of information are retained including the URL contained within the tagline and byline of the articles, news information, photos etc.

[In the news] 16 minors rescued from alleged trafficker -MindaNews

MindaNews » 16 minors rescued from alleged trafficker.

By Allen V. Estabillo
May 12, 2012

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/11 May) – Government agents rescued at least 16 minors from Maguindanao province who were allegedly recruited for fake overseas job placements by a suspected human trafficker based in this city.

Timmy Rejano, supervising agent of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Region 12, said Friday they intercepted the victims while their alleged recruiter identified as Mary Ann Linao was trying to secure their clearances at the NBI regional office in Koronadal City on Wednesday.

He said they immediately arrested Linao, who was charged late Thursday for violation of Republic Act 9208 or the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Acts of 2003.

“While processing the clearances, our agents discovered that some of the birth certificates they presented were bogus while others were tampered to make it appear that they were no longer minors,” Rejano told MindaNews.

He said they immediately took custody of the 16 victims, who were all residents of Shariff Aguak town in Maguindanao.

During questioning, Rejano said the victims admitted that they were only aged between 16 and 17 years-old.

He said they were allegedly recruited by Linao for supposed jobs in Kuwait in earlier visits to their villages in Shariff Aguak.

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[In the news] Suspects in Fr. Tentorio slay charged -MindaNews.com

Suspects in Fr. Tentorio slay charged
By Malu Cadelina-Manar
February 25, 2012

KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews/24 February) – Authorities filed this week murder complaints against Jimmy Ato, who was arrested almost two months ago in Arakan town in North Cotabato, and three others, after they were tagged as behind the killing in October 2011 of Italian missionary Fr. Fausto Tentorio.

Also charged, reports said, were Roberto Ato, Jimmy’s younger brother who allegedly served as the driver of the motorcycle used as get-away vehicle after the killing; Jose Sultan Sampulna; and Dima Maligudan Sampulna.

The murder complaints were filed at the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor, this city, by operatives of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and Special Investigating Task Group Fausto led by Chief Supt. Lester Camba of the Police Regional Office in Region 12.

Lawyer Virgilio Mendez, deputy director for regional operations services of the NBI in Northern Mindanao (Region 10), said that after piecing together the evidences and testimonies, the names of the Ato brothers and the Sampulnas came out as primary suspects in the priest’s killing.
“We already have enough evidences as proof these people were involved in the crime,” said Mendez.

Read full article @ www.mindanews.com

[In the news] NBI returns warrant for Italian priest’s ‘killer’ –

NBI returns warrant for Italian priest’s ‘killer’
By Malu Cadeliña Manar, Sun Star
January 4, 2012

 KIDAPAWAN CITY — Agents of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) from Northern Mindanao have returned the warrant of arrest to the Regional Trial Court (RTC) branch 13 in Cotabato City against the suspected killer of Italian missionary from North Cotabato originated, a top NBI official said.

However, suspect Jimmy Ato, a Teduray from North Upi, Maguindanao, was not presented to the court, said lawyer Virgil Mendez, deputy chief of the Regional Operations Service of NBI-Davao Region.

Plan your Sinulog week ahead and find out what’s in store for Sinulog 2012.

Mendez said after the court has taken cognizance of the arrest of Ato, they would file a motion or letter request that the accused remain in their protection until such time charges in connection with the killing of Father Fausto Tentorio are filed against him.

“The motion or letter request will follow if the court issued an order directing the NBI to turn over the living person of Jimmy Ato to the issuing RTC court in Cotabato City,” Mendez said.

“Definitely, we would turn over Ato to the court in Cotabato City in due time. That’s the next step we would follow,” he added.

Read full article @ www.sunstar.com.ph