Implementing rules for Anti-Terrorism Act to be released before October 16 —Sec. Guevarra

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 1, 2020   •   200

The Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) for the Republic Act No. 11479 or Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 is set to be released before the October 16 deadline, according to Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Menardo Guevarra.

“We’re trying as much as we can sa pagda-draft ng IRR na mabigyan ng clarity iyong sinasabing (to draft the IRR and provide clarity on the) ambiguity of the law but we only do so much. Hindi kami pwede mag-legislate (We cannot legislate) because that is not our duty. We can only draft the implementing rules and regulations,” the DOJ chief added.

Guevarra said he is still reviewing and drafting the IRR which provides law enforcers and Armed Forces a basis on how to implement the said law.

He also admitted the difficulty in defining several of the terms in the law which includes the definition of the term ‘terrorism’, and the arrest of a suspected terrorist without warrant of arrest from the court.

Unang-una na diyan iyong tungkol sa definition mismo ng terrorism isang critical area iyan at saka iyong designation na tinatawag iyong  pag-identify kung sino iyong terrorist groups. Isa sa pinakamainit na isyu ay iyong pag-arrest at pag-detain ng isang suspected terrorist without a judicial warrant with all the petitions I think in all petitions tsina-challenge iyan (One of the critical areas is the definition of ‘terrorism. The designation of identifying terrorist groups. Another issue is the arrest and detainment of suspected terrorist without a judicial warrant. That is challenged by all petitions),” Guevarra said.

Meanwhile, the DOJ official said they are also expecting more petitions to be filed against the implementation of the Anti-Terrorism Act. There are currently over 30 petitions filed before the Supreme Court.

The petitions question the law’s alleged violation of constitutional rights, including freedom of speech and peaceful assembly.

Guevarra, meanwhile, assured that the law will be implemented for the safety of the public and that it will not violate human rights. AAC (with reports from Dante Amento)

ATC approves IRR for Anti-Terrorism Law

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 14, 2020

The Anti-Terrorism Council has approved the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Republic Act 11479 or the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020, according to Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Menardo Guevarra.

Guevarra said they will provide Congress and law enforcement agencies copies of the IRR. They will also release a copy online and in other publications.

“We will disseminate copies to Congress and to law enforcement agencies as required under the law, and will publish the IRR online and in a newspaper of general circulation in the next few days,” he added.

President Rodrigo Duterte signed the law last July 3 which repeals the Human Security Act of 2007.

The DOJ started drafting the IRR of the law last August.

Meanwhile, there are currently 30 petitions filed before the Supreme Court requesting to halt the implementation of the Anti-Terrorism Law questioning its constitutionality.

The Office of the Solicitor General, however, has already asked the high tribunal to dismiss the petitions. -AAC (with reports from Dante Amento)

Tensions still high at New Bilibid Prison after gang riot – DOJ

Robie de Guzman   •   October 13, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Tensions remain high between prison gang members at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) following Friday’s riot that left at least several inmates dead, the Department of Justice (DOJ) said.

In a statement, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said the situation at the NBP is still tense but the violence has been contained with the help of the police and prison authorities.

“There were intelligence reports that one group was amassing to strike back at the rival group,” Guevarra said in a message to reporters.

At least nine inmates who are members of the rival Sputnik ang Commando Gangs were killed in a brawl that broke out before dawn Friday in one quadrant of NBP’s maximum security compound.

Guevarra said he has yet to get an update from the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) on the situation.

BuCor director general Gerald Bantag earlier said an investigation into the cause of the incident is underway.

The National Bureau of Investigation was also directed to conduct a separate investigation and file charges against anyone involved in the riot. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Dante Amento)

BOC, BJMP implement updated uniform manual for GCTA

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 2, 2020

The Bureau of Corrections (BOC) and the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) have started implementing the updated uniform manual for the Republic Act 10592, the Expanded Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) Law.

Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Menardo Guevarra said the delay for the implementation was brought about by issues that needed to be addressed. These include the rumored possible release of rape-slay and murder convict Laguna Mayor Antonio Sanchez.

Based on the new Implemented Rules and Regulations (IRR), heinous crime convicts cannot benefit from the GCTA Law. The IRR also defined what can be considered as a heinous crime.

Kung wala kang guide kung ano iyong heinous crimes hindi mo malalaman kung sino ba iyong dapat mabigyan ng GCTA (If you don’t have a guide on what heinous crimes are, you will not know who should benefit from the GCTA), Guevarra said. AAC (with reports from Dante Amento)

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