DOJ scores 50% convictions in court cases filed in 2020 – Sec. Guevarra

Published July 21, 2021, 1:15 PM

by Jeffrey Damicog

Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra (2)

Almost 50 per cent of all criminal cases filed before the trial courts by Department of Justice (DOJ) prosecutors in 2020 resulted in convictions, Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra said on Wednesday, July 21.

Guevarra said: “In 2020, the DOJ’s conviction rate registered its highest at 49.46 percent. Our conviction rate in trial courts has more than doubled. In 2016, that rate stood at a measly 20.4 percent.”

“At the end of 2018, the year of my appointment as secretary of justice, our prosecutors had increased their conviction rate to 41.74 percent,” he said.

He explained that “as the government’s prosecution arm, it is the DOJ, through the National Prosecution Service (NPS), which ensures that offenders who violate our laws are tried in court to be meted out the punishment commensurate to their crimes.”

Also, Guevarra said that the rate of disposition of cases handled by the NPS in 2020 was “at an all-time high of 91.19 percent, up from 87.23 percent in 2016.”

“The backlog rate of the NPS has considerably decreased from 49.80 percent in 2016 to just 29.5 percent in 2020,” he added.

Guevarra attributed the improved performance to the “hard work and unwavering dedication of our prosecutors in the discharge of their duty and by a host of programs and interventions designed and implemented by the DOJ leadership to assist our prosecutors in their task”

“In 2020, the department launched various training programs to upscale our prosecutors in their handling of difficult and complex cases involving offenses ranging from cybercrime, competition and commercial crimes, human trafficking and online sexual exploitation of children, to those involving violations of human rights,” he noted.