KARAPATAN FOILS FRAME-UP TRY VS RIGHTS ACTIVIST

HUMAN RIGHTS UPDATE 25 April, 2010

Cebu City–The premier human rights umbrella KARAPATAN-Central Visayas foiled anew another attempt by the AFP to frame up a human rights leader here.

Acting upon the group’s swift response, the Regional Trial Court-Branch 25 in Mandaue City has to immediately strike down the motion of the 79th Infantry Battalion to belatedly insert the name of Julian Bacalso as among the respondents in a Rebellion case.

Bacalso is the coordinator in Central Visayas of SELDA, an organization of freed political prisoners.   He was a political prisoner himself having been detained in Tagbilaran City in 1999.

The AFP, in its “motion to insert the name of Julian Bacalso” in the information sheet, tried to misrepresent Bacalso as the same person as a “Ka Dido” and a “Ka Noli” who were the supposed respondents.

However, in her order last Friday (23 April 2010), the court pointed out the AFPs failure to abide by due process and to have its evidence subjected to legal scrutiny.

The AFP has been rummaging through court dockets to find cases with which to charge activists.   The most convenient way is to misrepresent respondents identified only with aliases in charge sheet with the names of outspoken government critics.

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