DOJ set to probe if charges vs CPP’s Sison, 3 others, can be filed in court

Published September 7, 2021, 8:26 AM

by Jeffrey Damicog

Department of Justice

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is set to name a panel of prosecutors to conduct preliminary investigation on the criminal complaints filed by alleged rebel returnees against Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founder Jose Maria Sison and several others.

The complaints lodged with the DOJ last Sept. 1 and 3 were filed by Kurt Russel Olaes Sosa and Joy James Saguino who claimed they were former cadres of the CPP-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF).

Aside from Sison, named in the complaints were Lean Porquia, Karen Edaniel and Vince Hugo Villena.

Sosa and Saguino accused Sison and the three other respondents of violations of Section 4(i) of Republic Act No. 9208, the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003, as amended, for recruiting a child to engage in armed activities; and Section 10(a) of RA 7610, the Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act.

They were assisted by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG) in filing the complaints.

In his complaint filed last Sept. 1, Saguino named as respondents Sison, Porquia and Edaniel.

Sosa’s complaint filed last Sept. 3 name as respondents Sison and Villena.

In a statement, the DOJ’s Office of the Prosecutor General (OPG) said: “Both complaints were already docketed (NPS Docket Nos. XVI-INV-21I-002803 and XVI-INV-21I-002834) and forwarded to the chairperson of the appropriate task force for assignment to a panel of prosecutors for the conduct of the preliminary investigation.”

The OPG said: “Saguino claimed that he was allegedly recruited in June 2007 at the University of the Philippines — Visayas, Iloilo Campus when he was still a 16-year-old student.”

In the case of Sosa, OPG said: “Sosa claimed that he was a 17-year-old journalism student at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines — Sta. Mesa when he was recruited to join the CPP-NPA-NDF on 01 May 2015.”

The OPG noted that the two complaints are related to the complaint of another rebel returnee, Lady Desiree Collado Miranda, who filed it before the DOJ last Aug. 23 with the assistance of the PNP-CIDG.

It said that in her complaint, Miranda named as respondents Sison, and suspected NPA members Redsa Balatan, Rey Dela Pena and Joel Caliwliw.

She accused Sison and Balatan of having violated Section 4(i) of RA 9208 and Section 10(a) of RA 7610.

Miranda accused Dela Pena and Caliwliw of two counts and four counts, respectively, of rape in violation of Article 266-A of the Revised Penal Code (RPC).

The PNP-CIDG had said that Miranda was “recruited at the age of 14 as a member of Anakbayan, a CTG (Communist Terrorist Group) front organization ….”