DOJ, DILG issue joint operational guidelines on cases of political, media killingsPerfecto T. Raymundo

February 5, 2013 11:19 pm 

MANILA, Feb. 5 — The Department of Justice and Department of Interior and Local Government have signed a joint Operational Guidelines that will ensure cooperation of prosecutors and law enforcement investigators in the investigation, case build-up, inquest and preliminary investigation and trial of cases of political and media killings.

The Operational Guidelines implements Administrative Order No. 181 series of 2007 which seeks to ensure the cooperation and coordination between the National Prosecution Service and other concerned government agencies for the successful investigation and prosecution of political and media killings.

"This effort to converge knowledge, experience, talents and resources of officers from two separate departments to ensure convictions of political and media killings germinated during the time of the late Sec. Jesse Robredo," DOJ Secretary Leila M. De Lima said.

"I am most thankful that the zealousness and commitment to address these crimes that have serious implications on the exercise of Constitutional rights are mirrored and shared by Sec. Mar Roxas," De Lima added.

An innovative feature of the Operational Guidelines is that the cooperation between prosecutors and law enforcement investigators begin as early as the case build-up and evidence-gathering after an incident has been assessed to be a possible political-activist or media killing.

A group of prosecutors and law enforcement investigators coming from the Philippine National Police and the National Bureau of Investigation shall be convened to identify the witnesses, assist in the preparation of their affidavits and evaluate the Scene of the Crime Report and the other physical or object evidence necessary in the filing of the case with the concerned prosecution office.

After the termination of the investigation, the group shall file the proper complaint before the City/Provincial Prosecutors Office.

Notwithstanding such referral, the group will continue to convene for the purpose of evaluating and gathering additional evidence necessary to further strengthen the case.

After inquest or preliminary investigation, where there is a finding of probable cause, a resolution is prepared to be approved by the Prosecutor General or City/Provincial Prosecutor.

As far as practicable, the Prosecutor General or the City/Provincial Prosecutor shall create a panel composed of prosecutors who handled the investigation, inquest/preliminary investigation and trial for the purpose of conducting the actual prosecution of the political-activist/media killing case.(PNA)

DSP/PTR

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