ICC may use data on 52 cases on deaths in drug war operations – DOJ Usec. Sugay

Published October 21, 2021, 1:22 PM

by Jeffrey Damicog


The International Criminal Court (ICC) may use the data released by the Department of Justice (DOJ) on the 52 cases of killings in the illegal drugs operations which resulted in deaths to 56 persons.

DOJ Undersecretary Adrian Ferdinand S. Sugay, during the “Laging Handa” briefing held Thursday, Oct. 21, said:

“Kung gusto nila gamitin nasa kanila iyon. Nasa ICC na iyon (It’s up to them if they want to use it. It’s up to the ICC). “Already part of open source information kasi isina-publiko na ito (because it has been made public).”

Last Sept. 15, the ICC announced that its Pre-Trial Chamber granted the request of its prosecutor to begin an investigation into the alleged extrajudicial killings and other crimes in the Philippines.

Simultaneously with the release on the data on 52 cases last Wednesday, the DOJ called on witnesses to help in the prosecution of 154 policemen who allegedly committed criminal acts.

“These cases are to undergo further investigation and case buildup by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) for the possible filing of criminal charges against erring police officers,” the DOJ said.

In making public data on the cases, the DOJ said that it is “inviting any witnesses or persons with first-hand information helpful to the resolution of the 52 cases to come forward and approach to NBI for the taking of their statements.”

It said the release of the circumstances and other details in the 52 cases is also meant to inform “the families and loved ones of the deceased suspects that the circumstances surrounding each incidence of death are undergoing a determination of possible criminal liabilities on the part of the erring police officers.”

Sugay said the DOJ will continue to review other cases of deaths that occurred during the law enforcements’ anti-illegal drugs operations.

“Kami rin naman dito sa DOJ tuloy-tuloy lang din yung trabaho namin (We at the DOJ also continue with our work,” Sugay declared.

“Kung ano man ang naibigay sa amin ire-review namin with proper recommendations (Whatever is given to us we will review it with proper recommendations),” he added.

Sugar explained that the names of the policemen under investigation were not contained in the released data in adherence to due process.

Anyway, he said, the names of the policemen would be known if and when cases are filed against them before the prosecutors’ offices and later before the courts.

The administrative aspect of the cases will have to be determined by the Philippine National Police (PNP), Sugay said.