Intel units to assist in re-arrest of freed convicts: Esperon

MANILA National Security Adviser Hermogenes C. Esperon Jr. on Thursday said the government's intelligence units will be working closely with law enforcers in going after the nearly 2,000 prisoners erroneously released through the misapplication of Republic Act 10592 or the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) law by officials of the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor).

"Ang Pangulo, nag-utos sa Philippine National Police (PNP) na tumulong in 15 days kung gusto nila bumalik ay hahanapin na sila at ibabalik ng pilitan dun sa Bureau of Corrections. Tutulong diyan ang NBI (National Bureau of Investigation), tutulong dyan ang ating intelligence units at ang tulong ng(Armed Forces of the Philippines) kung kailangan. (The President has ordered the PNP to take action and return the fugitives to the Bureau of Corrections in 15 days. The NBI will help along with intelligence units and the Armed Forces of the Philippines)," Esperon told reporters in an interview at the Quezon City Prosecutor's Office.

Esperon said these heinous crime convicts pose a threat to national security.

"So may impact sa national security dahil 'yung mga heinous crimes offenders na iyon maaari silang makasalanta sa publiko (It has national security implications because these heinous crimes convicts may cause harm to the public).

Esperon added that the President's order only seeks to recover all these prisoners and scrutinize their records to determine who among them are actually qualified to an earlier release under the law.

Meanwhile, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) assured its readiness to assist other law enforcement agencies in carrying out the President's order.

"We are here, ready to render assistance and give support to the DOJ, the PNP, and other relevant agencies of government when so requested. We are committed to ensuring that our communities are safe and that justice is served as this is in pursuit of our constitutional mandate of protecting the people and securing the state," AFP spokesperson Marine Brig. Gen. Edgard Arevalo said in a statement.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said he will designate an officer in charge to take over the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) after the President fired its Director General Nicanor Faeldon over the controversy.

Guevarra added that the NBI and the police will take the lead in facilitating the orderly recovery of the released persons deprived of liberty. (with reports from Priam Nepomuceno/PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency