AMLC approves freeze order on CPP-NPA related accounts—DOJ

Aileen Cerrudo   •   December 28, 2020   •   451

MANILA, Philippines — The Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) has approved the freezing of bank deposits and other assets of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and New People’s Army (NPA), according to the Department of Justice (DOJ).

In a text message to reporters on Sunday (December 27), DOJ Secretary Menardo Guevarra said the AMLC approved the freeze after the Anti-Terrorism Council (ATC) formally designated the CPP-NPA as a terrorist group.

AMLC Executive Director Mel Racela, meanwhile, clarified that there are no bank accounts directly named under the CPP-NPA.

“There are no accounts under the name of CPP/NPA, but the FO (freeze order) covers the related accounts (RA) of said organization. RA means all accounts opened and maintained for the benefit of said organization, the identification of which the banks and other covered persons will play a very important role,” Racela said.

He also added that the freeze order aims to “deprive designated terror organizations of resources to prevent possible terror attacks.” AAC

DOJ, DILG crafting guidelines for Duterte order to detain people improperly wearing face masks

Robie de Guzman   •   May 6, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) are crafting guidelines for the latest order of President Rodrigo Duterte to detain those who are improperly wearing face masks in public, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said Thursday.

In a message to reporters, Guevarra said the guidelines will include details on the booking and detention processes, as well as the investigation and the filing of charges against those who will be apprehended.

The DOJ chief, however, stressed that Duterte’s order takes effect immediately even if the guidelines are still being formulated.

“The President’s directive takes effect immediately even without the guidelines. Existing laws and ordinances define the prohibited acts and impose the corresponding penalties therefore, and the relevant rules of court govern the procedure,” Guevarra said.

He also advised the public to wear face masks properly and to follow the law to avoid being detained.

“The best way to avoid being arrested while the guidelines are being formulated is to wear a face mask and obey the law,” he said.

On Wednesday, Duterte ordered the Philippine National Police to impose a stricter mask mandate to stem the spread of COVID-19 that mostly affected urban centers.

De Lima now in stable condition, discharged from hospital

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 27, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Senator Leila M. de Lima is now in stable condition and has been discharged from the hospital, according to her personal physicians.

In a statement, Dr. Dante Morales and Dr. Errol Rhett Santelices said the result of De Lima’s tests showed no evidence of stroke.

“The medical team who attended her case said De Lima experienced episodes of migraine headaches triggered by the hot environment, poor ventilation, and noise. This was associated with benign paroxysmal positional vertigo and reactive hypertension,” the statement reads.

Her personal physicians have recommended increasing ventilation in her detention quarters which is poorly ventilated and absorbs the summer heat.

It was also recommended that the senator undergo more tests should the symptoms recur.

The medical team also stressed that De Lima’s blood pressure and sugar level be regularly monitored. She was also advised to avoid stress.

De Lima was confined at the Manila Doctors Hospital for three days, from April 24-27, to undergo a medical examination.

De Lima thanked everyone who showed support, sent messages, and offered prayers for her recovery. AAC

DOJ confirms Facebook took down page behind malicious tagging

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 22, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Justice – Office of Cybercrime (DOJ- OOC) has confirmed that social media giant Facebook has already taken down the page that was linked to the malicious tagging spreading online.

In the past few days, netizens are getting notifications about getting tagged to what seems to be an adult video. Upon clicking the link, it will then ask the user to install an update to watch the video in full which will prompt to automatically tag random Facebook users to the same post.

In a statement on Wednesday (April 21), the DOJ-OOC said it has raised the issue to Facebook APAC Legal Law Enforcement Outreach and received a report that the page has been removed. The administrators of the said page have also been sanctioned.

“As of this morning, 11AM of 21, April 2021, the DOJ-OOC received confirmation from Facebook APAC Legal Law Enforcement Outreach that the page associated to the malicious tagging has been removed and its administrators were sanctioned,” according to the statement.

The DOJ-OOC also encouraged the public to immediately report similar incident for immediate action. AAC

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