Slay try on red-tagged lawyer bolsters the need to reject red-tagging policy—Drilon

Published March 5, 2021, 3:04 PM

by Hannah Torregoza 

Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon on Friday condemned the assassination attempt against a human rights lawyer in Iloilo City, saying this bolsters the need to reject the government’s red-tagging policy.

Senator Franklin Drilon (Senate of the Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)

“I condemn in the strongest terms the assassination attempt on lawyer Angelo Karlo ‘AK’ Guillen. The attempt on the life of Guillen sends a chilling effect on members of the legal profession – lawyers, judges and justices,” Drilon said.

“When lawyers can no longer do their job freely and without fear of being killed, that is when the rule of law begins to weaken,” the former justice secretary also stressed.

Drilon said the assassination attempt on the 33-year old indigenous people’s lawyer is particularly disquieting in light of the issue on red-tagging.

“His case lays the basis for the need for a stronger policy against red-tagging. Congress should provide sufficient remedies to protect the victims of red-tagging activities,” he said.

“We should not let this horrific attack on members of the legal profession continue. Guillen’s case should not just add to the strings of unresolved cases of killing of and assassination attempts on lawyers in the country,” “I urge the authorities to bring those responsible to justice,” the senator appealed.

Guillen survived the stabbing on Wednesday night, which police said could have been a botched robbery.

The lawyer also serves as one of the legal counsel in one of the 37 petitions questioning the constitutionality of the Anti-Terrorism Act in the Supreme Court.