MEL STA.MARIA | When ‘invited’ by the police, do not go
Drugs and human rights are the national issues these days. President Duterte himself declared, “I don’t care about human rights, believe me”. Whether the President likes it or not, wittingly or unwittingly, this public pronouncement appears to have emboldened and continues to embolden some scoundrel policemen (who may even be secret participants in the drug trade) and vigilantes to kill suspected drug pushers. I believe that even the President does not desire these criminal acts. Unfortunately, however, the wrong message has been understood by undesirable elements — resulting in a rash of “salvaging” (summary execution) with impunity.
Also, threateningly, “lists” of alleged persons involved in allegedly illegal drugs have mushroomed. The President’s style of “naming and shaming” is now being mimicked at the lower echelons of government. There have been stories of the police knocking on houses and, on the basis of the “lists,” issuing “invitations” for persons to go to the precincts.
Know your rights
All citizens must know their constitutional and human rights.
If you are “invited” to the police station by policemen or men in power or authority, always ask if they have a warrant of arrest. If they do not have any warrant, their “invitation” should be politely declined.
Even if they appear to be “friendly”, do not go. If they insist, call your lawyer first. Also, as soon as you hear that you are being invited, be sure to have witnesses around you. Ask for the names of the police officers, remember their faces or, better still, take their pictures via your cellphone.
Better to be safe than be subjected to possible persecution, extortion and/or even extra-judicial execution.
The use of “invitations” by policemen and/or people with authority has been so abused that even our Supreme Court has said that such “invitations” have become a “euphemism for an arrest without a warrant of arrest” (People vs. Dilao G.R. No. L-43259 October 23, 1980). This is a violation of the Bill of Rights enshrined in our Constitution prohibiting illegal arrest, search and seizure. It is also a contravention of the fundamentally declared principle that “the state values the dignity of every human person and guarantees full respect for human rights” (Section 7 Article 2, 1987 Constitution).
‘Invitation’ akin to arrest without warrant
Considering that an “invitation’ is, in effect, an arrest without warrant, the police “list”– which is the basis of the “invitation” — is nothing more than a witch-hunt-register. The “list” is not the result of the findings of a judge (required of a warrant of arrest) but a disclosure of an alleged informant, who could be unknown and whose-say-so may even be suspect or borne out of a grudge or other dark motive).
At the point of “invitation” by the police or person-in-authority based on this “list”, be aware that, though seemingly innocuous, the trampling of your rights has already started.
Once you are in a police station by yourself, without a lawyer, in the midst of these policemen or persons in authority, you are at their mercy. Subsequent events will be beyond your control. Without realizing it, you are already being probed about a drug-crime. Interrogation will have been set in motion subjecting you to searching questions aimed at obtaining incriminating evidence or forced confession. “In such an atmosphere, a man of ordinary or average composure may yield to a skilled investigator or one who though unskilled is prone to brutal techniques” (People vs. Dilao, supra), which may include the threat of extermination. This is a natural, but dreadfully obnoxious, expectation.
Because of this pernicious police practice, Republic Act No. 7438, or “An Act defining the rights of persons arrested or under custodial investigation,” explicitly provides that “custodial investigation shall include the practice of issuing an ‘invitation’ to a person who is investigated in connection with an offense he is suspected to have committed, without prejudice to the liability of the ‘inviting’ officer for any violation of law.” A violation of the law shall mean a jail term for the arresting officers.
Remember also that, under Republic Act No. 7438,when an “invitee” is in the precinct and being held therein by virtue of these “invitations,” the “invitee”, among others:
“shall be allowed visits by or conferences with any member of his immediate family, or any medical doctor or priest or religious minister chosen by him or by any member of his immediate family or by his counsel, or by any national non-governmental organization duly accredited by the Commission on Human Rights or by any international non-governmental organization duly accredited by the Office of the President. The person’s “immediate family” shall include his or her spouse, fiancé or fiancée, parent or child, brother or sister, grandparent or grandchild, uncle or aunt, nephew or niece, and guardian or ward.” (Section 2 (f) of R.A. 7438)
You must always be vigilant. If the occasion presents itself, inform others of what you know about “invitations” by the police. In so doing, you may be saving lives.
Be an advocate of human rights. Always remember that, in disregarding or ignoring the human rights of others, you may be endangering your own.
Atty. Mel Sta. Maria is the resident legal expert of TV5 and co-host of the daily Radyo5 show “Relasyon.” He is also dean of the FEU Institute of Law.
Know Your Rights 1: Basic Rights
Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism and Free Legal Assistance Group
Anuman ang sitwasyon, nananatiling lubos at hindi dapat yurakan ang ating mga batayang karapatan. Kabilang dito ang mga sumusunod.
(In any situation, you do not lose your basic rights, such as….)
- Karapatang mabuhay (The right to life);
- Karapatang hindi ma-torture o isailalim sa malupit, di-makatao, at kahiya-hiyang pakitungo o parusa (The right not to be trotured nor subjected to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment);
- Karapatang hindi sapilitang pagtrabahuhin (The right not to be subjected to forced labor)
- Karapatang hindi makulong dahil sa hindi pagbayad ng utang (The right not to be imprisoned for non-payment of debt);
- Karapatang huwag maparusahan para sa mga gawaing hindi pa naisabatas na krimen nang ito ay mangyari (The right not to be punished for an act which was not yet a crime at the time of its commission);
- Karapatan na kilalanin at tratuhin bilang tao (The right to be recognized and treated as a person); and
- Karapatan sa malayang pag-iisip, konsiyensiya, at pananampalataya or relihiyon (The right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion).
Lubos o absolute ang lahat ng karapatang ito. Sa anumang kondisyon o pangyayari, hindi maaring pigilan o suspendihin ang pag-ako natin ng mga karapatang ito. Ito ay totoo kahit sa ilalim ng martial law o state of public emergency na naideklara ng pamahalaan. Ang mga karapatang ito ay “non-derogable” sa ilalim ng United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights na sakop ang pamahalaan ng Pilipinas bilang signatory.
(These rights are absolute. Under no condition can their fulfillment or enjoyment be suspended. This is true even when martial law or any other state of emergency has been declared. These are non-derogable rights under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to which the Philippines is a signatory.)
May iba pang mga karapatan na itinuturing na inalienable o inviolable o hindi maikakait at hindi dapat labagin kailanman kabilang na ang:
(There are other rights that are considered inalienable and inviolable, such as…)
* Karapatan na hindi halughugin ang iyong tahanan kung walang search warrant na pirmado ng isang hukom o judge, at karapatang huwag samsamin ang anumang gamit sa iyong bahay na hindi nakadetalye sa search warrant. Gayunman, kung ikaw ay nahuli ng ligal, ikaw at ang iyong immediate surroundings o kinalalagyan ay maaring ma-search para sa dangerous weapons o iba pang ebidensiya, at anuman ang makita sa iyong sarili at immediate vicinity ay maaring kunin ng mga otoridad kung ito ay ginamit diumano sa krimen na dahilan ng iyong pagkahuli.
(The right not to have your house searched without a search warrant issued by a judge, and not to have anything seized which is not specified in the search warrant. However, if you are legally arrested, your person and immediate surroundings may be searched for dangerous weapons, and any evidence found on your person or immediate vicinity (only on your person and immediate vicinity) which may have been used to commit the crime for which you are being arrested may be seized.)
* Karapatan na maging malaya at walang pangamba sa iyong personal na seguridad. Maari kang pagkaitan ng kalayaan ayon lamang sa mga batayan at proseso na nakatala sa Konstitusyon at batas.
(The right to liberty and security of person. You can be deprived of liberty only on grounds and procedures established by the Constitution and existing law.)
* Karapatan na hindi arestuhin kung walang ebidensiya na may krimen nang naganap at diumano’y kalahok ka sa gawaing ito. Maari ka lamang arestuhin sa bisa ng isang arrest warrant na pirmado ng isang hukom o judge, liban na lang kung:
(The right not to be arrested except on evidence that a crime Has been committed and that you probably committed it. You may be arrested only on the strength of a warrant of arrest issued by a judge, except:)
* Kung ikaw ay may ginawa o ginagawang krimen, o nagbabalak gumawa ng kasalanan (offense) sa batas, sa harap ng isang arresting officer;
(When you have committed, are actually committing, or are attempting to commit an offense in the presence of the arresting officer);
* Kung, batay sa personal na kaalaman ng arresting officer sa mga pangyayari at datos ng kasalanang naganap, naniniwala siyang ikaw ang maysala;
(When an offense has been committed and the arresting office has probable cause to believe, based on personal knowledge of the facts and circumstance, that you committed the offense);
* Kung ikaw ay tumakas mula sa kulungan o piitan, o habang inililipat ng kulungan;
(When you have escaped from prison or detention or while being transferred from one confinement to another.)
Isang sibilyan na prosecutor ang dapat magsuri sa isang inquest proceeding kung ligal o iligal ang iyong pagka-aresto. Sa inquest proceeding na ito, maaring magdesisyon ang prosecutor na:
(The legality of your arrest must be determined in an inquest proceeding conducted by a civilian prosecutor. The prosecutor, in a summary proceeding, can):
* Palayain ka (ito ay pwedeng maganap kahit man wala pang kumpletong preliminary investigation na naganap);
(Order your release [this may or may not be subject to a full-blwOm preliminary investigation]};
* Ipagtibay na ligal ang iyong pagka-aresto at isampa ang kaukulang complaint o impormasyon laban sa iyo sa trial court;
(Affirm the legality of your arrest and prepare the corresponding complaint or information with the trial court};
* Isangguni sa nahuli kung nais niyang magkaroon ng preliminary investigation at pumirma sa isang waiver. Ito ay kadalasang nangyayari. Huwag pumirma sa waiver kung hindi nabigyan ng sapat na impormasyon ng kahihinatnan ng pagpirma nito. Ang pag-pirma mo sa waiver ay nangangahulugang pumapayag kang manatili sa kulungan, habang naghinihintay sa preliminary investigation. Ang pagpirma mo sa waiver ay maari ring ituring na wala kang planong magsampa ng kaso sa mga nanghuli sa iyo.
(Often the inquest prosecutor will ask the person arrested if s/he desires a preliminary investigation, in which case s/he will be asked to sign a waiver. Do not sign the waiver without being fully informed of the nature and consequences of signing it. Signing the waiver may — and often does — mean that you are going to remain in detention, pending preliminary investigation. It may also mean that you are waiving your right to file cases against those who arrested you.)
Kapag na-aresto at habang nasa kulungan, at ikaw ay tinanong o inimbestiga ng mga pulis o sundalo, nananatiling lubos ang iyong mga karapatang pantao tulad ng:
(While under arrest or detention, if you are questioned or investigated by the police and military, you have the following rights:)
* Malinaw na masabihan at basahan ng iyong mga karapatan sa Konstitusyon, kasama na ang manatling tikom ang bibig;
(To be informed of your right to remain silent and other constitutional rights);
* Magkaroon ng mahusay at walang kinikilingang abogado, at mas maiman pa, personal mong pinili;
(To have competent and independent counsel preferably of your own choice; and)
* Bigyan ng abogado, kung hindi mo kayang kumuha ng sarili mong tagapatanggol;
(To be provided with counsel if you cannot afford one.)
Sa lahat ng pag-uusig ng krimen, ito ang iyong mga karapatan:
(In all criminal prosecutions, you have the following rights:)
* Huwag piliting tumestigo laban sa sarili mo
(Not to be compelled to testify against yourself);
* Manatiling tikom ang bibig kapag nahuli at magkaroon ng abogado
(To remain silent and to counsel);
* Bigyan ng impormasyon ukol sa uri at dahilan ng akusasyon laban sa iyo
(To be informed of the nature and cause of the accusations against you);
* Magkaroon ng mabilis, bukas, at patas na pagilitis
(To have a speedy, public, and impartial trial);
* I-apela ang conviction order o desisyon ng korte na ikaw ay maysala
(To appeal any conviction);
* Ituring na inosente hangga’t hindi napapagtibay na ikaw ay maysala
(To be presumed innocent until the contrary is proved);
* Harapin at madinig ka at iyong abogado sa paglilitis
(To be present and heard by yourself and counsel);
* Matulungan ng mga proseso ng korte pati na ang compulsory attendance ng mga testigo o witnesses at sa paglalahad ng ebidensiya laban sa iyo
(To avail yourself of court processes to secure the compulsory attendance of witnesses and the presentation of evidence in your defense);
* Makita nang harapan at ma-cross-examine ang mga testigo laban sa iyo
(To meet the witnesses face-to-face and to cross-examine them);
* Magkaroon ng preliminary investigation ng akusasyon laban sa iyo
(The right to a preliminary investigation);
* Huwag litisin at parusahan ng dalawang beses para sa parehong krimen
(The right against double jeopardy);
* Bago ma-convict, maglagak ng pyansa, liban na lang sa mga kasong may parusang bitay at malakas ang ebidensiya ng pagkakasala
(Before conviction, the right to bail except for capital offenses when evidence of guilt is strong);
* Pakitunguhan sa paraang makatao at may paggalang
(The right to be treated with humanity and with respect for your personal dignity);
* Manirahan at maglakbay nang malaya
(The right to liberty of abode and the right to travel).
Know Your Rights 2: Search Operations
Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism and Free Legal Assistance Group
Kapag ang bahay o opisina mo ay hinalughog o na-search, ano ang dapat gawin?
When your house or office is searched, what should you do?
* Ang bahay o opisina mo ay hindi pwedeng ma-raid o mahalughog kung walang search warrant na pirmado ng isang hukom o judge. Kung may valid search warrant, maari lang kunin ng search party ang mga bagay na partikular na nakalista sa search warrant, liban na lang kung pumayag ka, at mga bagay o kontrabando na hayag na nakita. Gayunman, kung ikaw ay inaresto, ikaw at ang kinalalagyan mo (immediate surroundings) ay maari ring halughugin para sa mga deadly weapon o anumang ebidensiya na may sangkot ka sa krimen na dahilan ng iyong pagka-aresto, at ang mga ito ay maaring kunin o masamsam ng search party.
* Your house or office cannot be searched without a warrant duly issued by a judge. When a valid search warrant is issued, the searching party can only seize those things that are particularly described in the search warrant, unless you consent, or the articles are contraband in plain view. However, if you are arrested, your person and immediate surroundings may be searched for dangerous weapons and evidence that you committed the crime for which you are being arrested; any evidence, which may be found on your person or immediate vicinity can be seized.
Valid ang search warrant kung:
* A search warrant is valid if:
– Ito ay pinag-utos ng isang judge;
– Isang kasalanan lamang ang nakalista rito;
– Partikular na nakasaad ang eksaktong lokasyon o address ng lugar na dapat i-search at malinaw na nakalista ang mga bagay na dapat makuha o masamsam;
– Ito ay ginamit sa loob ng sampung araw matapos mapirmahan ng judge.
– It is ordered by a judge;
– It specifies one offense only;
– It describes with particularity the exact location and/or address of the place to be searched and lists down exactly what things are to be seized;
– It is used within ten days from issuance.
Dapat ay sa araw i-serve ang isang search warrant. Pero kung nakasaad sa mga salaysay o affidavit na sumusuporta sa search warrant na ang bagay na gustong masamsam ay personal na dala ng tao o nasa lugar na hahalughugin, maaring i-serve o gamitin ang search warrant ng mga otoridad anumang oras ng araw o gabi kung ito’s nakasulat sa warrant.
* A search warrant must be served during the daytime, unless the affidavits supporting it asserts that the property is on the person or in the place ordered to be searched, in which case the warrant must specifically direct that it can be served at any time of the day or night.
Kung hindi valid ang warrant, ang search at seizure operation ay iligal at labag sa batas. Anumang ebidensiya ang makuha sa isang iligal na search ay hindi pwedeng gamitin sa anumang kaso o paglilitis. Maari kang tumanggi ng mahinahon nang walang nilalabag na batas sa isang iligal na search at seizure operation. Maari ka ring magsampa ng kasong criminal, civil o disciplinary action laban sa mga otoridad na nagsagawa ng search gamit ang isang hindi valid na warrant.
* If the warrant is invalid, the search and seizure is unlawful. Any evidence obtained as a result of an unlawful search and seizure cannot be used as evidence in any proceeding. You may peacefully refuse, without liability, an unlawful search and seizure. You may also file criminal, civil, or disciplinary action cases against the officer serving an unlawful warrant.
Kung walang search warrant, huwag magboluntaryong sumailalim sa isang search. Agad na tumutol. Huwag pumayag na ma-search ngunit huwag din tumannggi sa paraang pisikal at marahas. Ang isang warrantless search na walang malinaw, pauna, at boluntaryong pagpayag mo ay iligal.
* When there is no search warrant, do not voluntarily submit yourself to a search. Object immediately. Do not agree to be searched but do not physically resist. A warrantless search without your express, prior, and voluntary consent is illegal.
Habang may operation:
During a search:
Bago pumayag na ma-search ang iyong bahay o opisina, hingin at basahin ang search warrant. Masusing suriin ito at alamin kung:
– Nakasulat dito ang iyong address;
– Nakalarawan dito ang partikular na bahay na dapat ma-search;
– Pirmado ito ng isang sibilyan na judge;
– Nakalista dito ang isa lamang offense or paglabag sa batas;
– Ginamit ito sa loob ng sampung araw matapos ma-issue ng judge.
* Before allowing your house or office to be searched, ask for and read the search warrant. Examine it carefully to see if it:
– states your address;
– describes the house to be seized with particularity;
– is signed by a civilian judge;
– specifies only one offense;
– is being used within 10 days from its issuance.
Kumonsulta agad-agad sa iyong abogado (sa pamamagitan ng telepono o text) at ipaalam sa kanya na may search na magaganap na sa iyong bahay o opisina.
* Contact your lawyer by the most expedient means (telephone, text message) and inform him/her that your home or office is about to be searched.
Matapos magbigay ng kaukulang notice ukol sa dahilan ng search at magpakita ng balidong warrant, maaring sirain ng search party ang anumang outlet o pintuan o bintana upang mag-search operation, kapag tumanggi ang maybahay o opisina na sila ay papasukin.
The search party has the right to break any outlet or inner door or window to effect the search if the search party is refused admittance to the place of the search after giving notice of the purpose and authority for the search.
Kung balido ang warrant, saka lamang maari mong payagan ang search operation. Pagkapasok sa iyong bahay o opisina ng search party, hingin mo ang kanilang mga pangalan, rank, at opisina at yunit na kanilang kinabibilangan. Kunin din ang pangalan at rank ng kanilang commanding officer.
* If it is a valid warrant, only then should you allow the search to be conducted. Upon letting the search party enter your premises, ask for their names, rank, and the office or unit to which they belong. Get the name and rank of the commanding officer.
Habang may search operation, subaybayan ang search team sa lahat ng pagkakataon. Ito ay upang makaiwas sa posibildad na magtanim ang search party ng anumang dokumento, armas, o ibang bagay sa iyong bahay o opisina.
* During the search, accompany the group conducting the search at all times. This lessens the possibility of their planting documents, weapons, or other materials in your home or office.
TANDAAN: Ang search party ay pwede lang magsagawa ng search operation sa harap ng ligal na occupant o miyembro ng pamilya na nakatira o may-ari ng bahay o opisina. Kung wala ang mga ito habang may search operation, ang search ay dapat maganap sa harap ng dalawang witness na may sapat na edad at kamulatan at nakatira sa lokalidad. Ibig sabihin, walang aumang kuwarto, cabinet, sulok o bahagi ng bahay o opisina ang pwedeng ma-search kung wala ang dalawang witness na ito.
REMEMBER: The search party is allowed to conduct the search only in the presence of the lawful occupant or any member of his/her family. If no occupant or family member is present, the search must be conducted in the presence of two witnesses of sufficient age and discretion who reside in the locality. This means that every room, compartment, section or portion of the place cannot be searched unless the above witnesses are present.
Kung may nakuha o nasamsam sa iyong bahay o opisina, ang police officer na kukuha ng mga ito ay dapat bigyan ka ng detalyadong resibo. Bago mo pirmahan at tanggapin ang resibo:
(a) Basahin at suriin ito ng mabuti pang masiguro na tumpak ang pagkalista, pagsalarawan at bilang ng mga ito;
(b) Kung may espasyong blanko sa resibo na maaring gamitin ng mga tiwaling pulis para dagdagan ng mga bagay na hindi naman nakuha sa iyong bahay o opisina, sabihan ang police officer na sulatan ng linya ang espasyong blanko.
(c) Pilitin na bigyan ka ng kopya ng resibo; kapag pumayag ang search team,, siguruhing eksakto at tumpak ang kopya na ibinigay ng tulad sa orihinal na resibo;
(d) Kung mayroong bagay sa resibo na tila “incriminating”, sabihan ang search party na mayroon kang karapatan na sumangguni sa iyong abogado at karapatang huwag magbigay ng pahayag, at ayaw mong pirmahan ang resibo hangga’t hindi mo nakakausap ang iyong abogado.
* If anything is taken from your home or office, the officer seizing the property must give you a detailed receipt. Before signing the receipt:
(a) Go over it carefully to ensure its accuracy in designation, description, and quantity;
(b) If there are blank spaces that might be used by unscrupulous police officers to “add” items that were not actually found during the search, ask the officer to place a line across the blank space;
(c) Insist that you be given a copy of the receipt, if they agree, make sure that the copy accurately reflects the original;’
(d) if there is anything in the receipt that tends or appears to be incriminating, tell the searching party you are invoking your right to a lawyer and to remain silent and that you refuse to sign anything without talking to your lawyer first.
Maaring humiling ang search party na pumirma ka sa isang katibayan na naging maayos ang search operation. Kung taliwas ang nangyari, huwag pumirma. Ipahayag ang iyong pagtutol. Gayunman, basahing mabuti ang kasulatan at sabihan ang police officer na nais mong kumonsulta muna sa iyong abogado.
* You may be asked to sign an affidavit of orderly search. If the search was not conducted in an orderly manner, do not sign the affidavit. Instead, register your objection. In any case, read it very carefully and tell the police officers you want to consult your lawyer before you sign anything.
source : ABS-CBN http://news.abs-cbn.com/focus/08/28/16/know-your-rights-3-arrests
Know your Rights 3: Arrests
Kapag ikaw ay inaresto, tandaan, kumalma lang.
* Kumalma lang. Ang pagka-aresto ay hindi katapusan ng mundo. Tumutok sa bawat pangyayaring nagaganap upang mabawasan ang pangamba, at huwag mag-alala sa mga kung ano ang susunod na mangyayari.
* Humiling sa isang kamag-anak, kaibigan, o taong di kilala (kunin ang pangalan at address) na maging witness sa paghuli sa iyo. Kung may cell phone, mag-text sa iyong pamilya, mga kaibigan, at abogado, para malaman nilang ikaw ay inaaresto. Tawagan sila at hayaan buhay ang linya ng telepono upang madinig nila ang nangyaryari.
* Kunin ang pangalan, opisyal na position, opisina at unit, ng mga tao na umaaresto sa iyo.
* Hingin ang kopya ng kanilang warrant of arrest para sa iyo at suriin itong mabuti. Alamin kung tumpak ang pangngalan mo na nakasulat sa warrant at kung ano ang paglabag sa batas na dahilan ng pag-aresto sa iyo.
* Kung may mali o depekto ang warrant, ipahayag ang iyong pagtutol pero huwag pumalag o gumamit ng dahas.
* Kung ikaw ay ligal na inaaresto, maaring kang kapkapan para sa posiblen deadly weapons or anuman bagay na dala mo na maaring gamiting katibayan para sa krimen na dahilan kung bakit ka inaaresto.
* Alamin sa iyong arresting officer kung saan ka dadalhin. Pilitin na dapat ay may kasama kang kamag-anak, kaibigan o di-kilalang tao na naka-witness ng iyong pag-aresto. Sabihin sa arresting officer na ito ay para na rin sa proteksyon ninyong dalawa.
* Hilingin na payagan kang tumawag sa iyong abogado; kapag tumanggi, sabihan ang iyong kamag-anak, kaibigan, o ibang witness sa iyong pagka-aretso na sila ang tumwag sa iyong abogado. Ipaalam sa iyong abogado ang mga pangyayari, ang pangaan ng iyong arresting officers, ang dahilan ng iyong pagka-aresto, at kung saan ka dadalhin ng arresting team.
* Sa lahat ng pagkakataon, huwag tutulan ng pisikal ang pag-aresto sa iyo. Ipahayag na ikaw ay tutol sa iyong pagka-aresto wala kang waiver o pagtalikod na gagawin sa lahat ng karapatan mo, at sasama ka nang mahihahon sa arresting team para iwasan ang karahasan.
* Kung ang humuhuli sa iyo ay naasuot sibilyan o hindi unipormado, or tumatangging ibigay ang kanilang pangalan, o walang maipakita na warrant of arrest, huwag sumama sa kanila. Hilingin na tuMawag ka ng pulis upang maklaro ang kanilang otoridad. Ayon sa batas, ang mga arresting officer ay dapat naka-uniporme, maayos kumilos, at may paggalang sa mga karapatan at dignidad ng kanilang aarestuhin. Kung ang arresting officer ay lumalabag sa mga ito, huwag mag-cooperate sa kanila pero huwag ding gumamit ng dahas. Hayaang bitbitin ka nila, magsisigaw at humingi ng tulong, mag-eksena upang tumawag pansin ng mga kapitbahay at mga nagdaraan. Tandaan ang lahat ng paglabag sa iyong mga karapatan at sa unang pagkakataon na makaharap sa judge o piskal/public prosecutor, mag-report at ikwento ang mga naganap.
* Kung ikaw ay sinabihan ng mga police officer hindi ka hinuhuli pero iniimbita lang for “questioning”, sagutin na kailangan mo munang kumonsulta sa iyong abogado. Gawin ito at sabihan ang iyong abogado na kausapin ang mga officer at itakda ang oras, petsa, at lugar kung saan pwedeng maganap ang questioning. Kung hindi ka payagan na kumonsulta sa iyong abogado, huwag sumama sa mgaofficer. Kapag pinilit ka nila, ang magaganap ay isang pag-aresto na rin.
* Ang pangkalahatang probisyon ng batas ay pwede ka lang ma-aresto kung mayroong valid na warrant of arrest na galing sa isang competent court. Gayunman, may tatlong exception sa probisyong ito ng batas:
– Kung ikaw ay may ginawa, o ginagawa, o nagbabalak gumawa ng krimen, sa harap mismo ng arresting officer;
– Kung may krimen or pAglabag sa batas naganap pa lang at ang arresting officer ay may dahilan, batay sa personal na kaalaman sa mga facts at circumstances ng nangyari, na may probable cause na ikaw ang maysala;
– Kung ikaw ay tumakas mula sa kulungan o habang inililipat mula sa kulungan.
Ulitin natin: Maging mahinahon.
Mag-concentrate sa mga nangayayari. Huwag mangamba ng lubos sa mga kung ano ang susunod na mangyayari. Maaring ang iyong kinatatakutan ay kathang-isip lang. Huwag mag-alala kung malimutan mo ang lahat ng mga payong ito. Hindi lahat ay pwedeng maganap ng perpekto. Maipagtatanggol mo ang iyong mga karapatan kung ikaw ay kalmado at malinaw ang kaisipan.
If you are being arrested, remember:
* Stay calm. Being arrested is not the end of the world. Some apprehension is unavoidable but you can reduce this by concentrating on each event as it happens, and not letting your imagination run wild about what will happen next.
* Ask a relative or friend or even a stranger (get the name and address) to witness your arrest. If you own a cell phone, send a text message to your family, friends, and lawyer informing them that you are being arrested. You may also call your family, friends, and lawyer so they may listen in on your arrest.
* Ask the person or persons arresting you for their names, their official positions, and the office or unit they belong to.
* Ask for a copy of their authority to arrest you and examine it carefully. Note particularly if you are correctly named in the warrant of arrest, and the offense for which you are being arrested.
* If there is any defect in the warrant, register your objection to being arrested but do not resist or use force.
* If you are lawfully arrested, you may be searched for dangerous weapons or anything, which may be used as proof that you committed the crime for which you are being arrested.
* Inquire from your arresting officer where you will be taken. Ask that you be accompanied by the relative, friend or stranger who witnessed your arrest. Assure the arresting officers that this is for their protection as well as yours.
* Ask to be allowed to telephone your lawyers; if denied, ask your relative, friend or other witness to your arrest, to do so. Inform your lawyer of your arrest, the identity of the arresting officers, the cause of your arrest, and where you will be taken.
* Do not, at any time, offer any physical resistance to the arrest. State that you object to your arrest and are not waiving any of your rights, but are going peacefully in order to avoid violence.
* If the persons making the arrest are in civilian clothes, or refuse to give their names or show any warrant of arrest, refuse to go with them. Ask them to let you call for a policeman to verify their authority. Do not agree to being blindfolded. The law requires arresting officers to be properly dressed, to behave properly, and to respect your rights and your dignity. If the arresting officers violate these requirements, do not cooperate, but do not use violence either. Make them carry you out, shout for help, create a scene so that your neighbors and other passersby may notice what is happening. Remember all violations of your rights and complain about them at the first opportunity after your arrest, when you are presented to a judge or fiscal/public prosecutor.
* If you are told that you are not being arrested but merely invited for questioning, reply that you will consult your lawyer first. Do so, then get your lawyer to talk to the officers and arrange a date, time, and place for your questioning. If they do not allow you to consult your lawyer, refuse to go with them. If they insist, their acts become an arrest and the preceding advice applies.
* The general rule is that you can only be arrested upon proper warrant of arrest issued by a competent court. However, there are three exceptions to this rule:
– When you have committed, are actually committing, or attempting to commit a crime in the presence of the arresting officer;
– When an offense has just been committed and the arresting officer has probable cause to believe based on personal knowledge of facts and circumstances that you committed the offense;
– When you have escaped from prison or detention or while being transferred from one confinement to another.
REPEAT: REMAIN CALM.
Concentrate on what is happening now. Do not imagine what will happen next. Many of your fears are self-created. Above all, do not worry if you forgot to do any of the things listed above. They are counsels of perfection, not always attainable. As long as you remain calm and collected, you will be able to protect your rights.
Know Your Rights 4: ‘Salvaging’
Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism and Free Legal Assistance Group
Kung ang paniwala mo ay huhulihin ka o isa-salvage, gawin ang mga sumusunod na hakbang pag-iingat.
* Huwag lumabas ng bahay na nag-iisa. Ang mga kaso ng disappearance at salvaging o extrajudicial killing ay dumarami kapag walang witness na pwedeng tumestigo ukol sa paghuli sa mga biktima.
* Iwasan ang mga kugar kung saan walang nakakakilala sa iyo.
* Huwag manatiling nag-iisa sa bahay o saan mang lugar.
* Sabihan ang iyong pamilya at mga kaibigan na may posibilidad na ikaw ay ma-aresto at kung ano ang dapat nilang gawin sakaling mangyari ito. Sabihan sila kung sino ang dapat hingan ng tulong, paano sila ma-kontak, at kung saan-saan ka dapat hanapin.
* Bago lumabas ng bahay, sabihan ang iyong pamilya ang mga kaibigan kung saan ka pupunta, kanino ka makikipagkita, gaano katagal kang mawawala, at kung ano ang dapat nilang gawin sakaling hindi ka makabalik sa oras, o hindi makarating sa iyong destinasyon o appointment. Kung may cell phone ka, mag-text sa mga kaibigan at pamilya para malaman nilang nakarating ka na sa iyong detsinasyon at allis muli sa susnod na apppintment.
* Kapag lumalabas ng bahay, palagiang magdala ng sapat nd identification cards, at iwasang magbiibit ng anumang delikadong bagay na maaring ituring na incriminating.
* Sakaling ikaw ay arestuhin, tiyakin na alam ng mga tao sa paligid na ikaw ay inaaresto at kung sino-sino ang umaaresto sa iyo. Kung kakailangan, sumigaw o gumawa ng eksena upang maakit angpansin ng mga tao sa paligid na ikaw ay inaaresto. Kung may cellphone ka, tumawag o mag-text sa iyong pamilya, mga kaibigan, at abogado upang malaman nila na ikaw ay inaaresto.
* Ang nga kaso ng disappearance o salvaging ay maaring mabawasan kung masasamahan o masusundan ka ng iyong pamilya, mga kaibigan, at mga tao sa paligid matapos na ikaw ay maaresto. Sa ganitong paraan, malalaman ng mga pulis na marami ang may alam na ikaw ay nahuli at mahalaga sa kanila ang iyong kaligtasan. Agad-agad, sabihan ang iyong abogado o isang respetadong miyembro sa lokalidad (pari, guro, doktor, civic leader) kung ano ang nagyari, at hilingin na mabilisang dumalaw sila sa iyo.
* Habang nakakulong na, dapat na bisitahin ka agad-agad ng iyong pamilya at mga kaibigan at padalhan ng mga gamit (pagkain, babasahin, gamot, damit, atbp) sa mga araw na bawal silang bumisita, Huwag pumayag na mailabas ka ng detention center nang walang kasamang abogado o miyembro ng pamilya mo.
* Kahit na may matibay kang impormasyon na huhulihin o isa-salvage ka na, hindi dapat magtago. Mas mainam na papuntahin ang iyong abugado o iba pang responsableng kinatawan upang magtanong kung meron ngang warrant of arrest para sa iyo, at upang humiling ng appointment na maiharap ka ng personal sa mga otoridad, nang may sapat na garantiya sa iyong kaligtasan.
Samantala, ihanda ang sarili — aralin nang lubos ang iyong mga karapatan, alamin kung ano ang dapat mong gawin sakaling ikaw ay mahuli, at siguruhing ikaw ay ligtas at protektado ang iyong mga karapatan.
If you believe that you will be arrested or salvaged, take the following precautions.
* Do not go out alone. The risk of enforced disappearance and extrajudicial execution or “salvaging” increases if no one witnesses or is willing to testify to the arrest of the person who disappeared or was salvaged.
* Avoid going to places where no one knows you.
* Do not stay at home or elsewhere alone.
* Tell your family or friends of the possibility of your being arrested, and what to do in case you are arrested. Tell them specifically who to run to for help, how to get in touch with them, and where to search for you.
* Before going out, tell your family or friends where you are going, whom you will see, why, how long you expect to be out, and what to do if you fail to return on time, or fail to reach your destination or keep your appointment. If you own a cell phone, send a text message to your friends or family informing them that you have reached your destination and are proceeding to your next appointment.
* When you go out, always carry adequate identification, and avoid carrying anything that could be construed as incriminating.
* In case you are being arrested, see to it that people know that you are being arrested and by whom. If necessary, shout or make a scene to attract attention to your arrest. If you own a cell phone, call or send a text message to your family, friends, and lawyers to inform them that you are being arrested.
* Disappearances and salvaging can be prevented or minimized if your family, friends or even bystanders will accompany or follow you and your arresting officers to learn where you are being taken and to show concern over your safety. As soon as possible, they should notify a lawyer or respected member of the community (a priest, teacher, doctor, or civic leader) who, in turn, should try to visit you immediately.
* During detention, your family and friends should visit you as often as possible, and send things to you (food, magazine, medicines, clothes, etc.) on days they cannot or are not allowed to visit. Never agree to be taken out of jail or the detention center by anyone unless accompanied by your lawyer or a member of your family.
* Even if you have reliable information that there is a plan to arrest or salvage you, it is not advisable to go into hiding. Instead, request your lawyer or other responsible person to inquire if there is a warrant for your arrest, and if there is, to arrange for you to present yourself to the proper authorities under adequate guarantee for your safety. Meanwhile, prepare yourself by reviewing your rights and deciding what you will do if you are arrested, to protect your safety and enforce your rights.
Know your rights: What every Pinoy should know
MANILA – A lawyers’ group is reminding the public to be knowledgeable of their rights amid the spate of extrajudicial killings and allegedly questionable police operations that resulted in deaths of drug suspects.
The Free Legal Assistance Group (FLAG) said Filipinos should keep in mind the following basic rights:
- The right to life;
- The right not to be tortured nor subjected to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment;
- The right not to be subjected to forced labor;
- The right not to be imprisoned for non-payment of debt;
- The right not to be punished for an act which was not yet a crime at the time of its commission;
- The right to be recognized and treated as a person; and
- The right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion.
”These rights are absolute. Under no condition can their fulfillment or enjoyment be suspended. This is true even when martial law or any other state of emergency has been declared. These are non-derogable rights under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to which the Philippines is a signatory,” FLAG said.
FLAG also listed down inalienable and inviolable rights:
The right not to have your house searched without a search warrant issued by a judge, and not to have anything seized which is not specified in the search warrant. However, if you are legally arrested, your person and immediate surroundings may be searched for dangerous weapons, and any evidence found on your person or immediate vicinity (only on your person and immediate vicinity) which may have been used to commit the crime for which you are being arrested may be seized.
The right to liberty and security of person. You can be deprived of liberty only on grounds and procedures established by the Constitution and existing law.
The right not to be arrested except on evidence that a crime has been committed and that you probably committed it. You may be arrested only on the strength of a warrant of arrest issued by a judge, except:
– When you have committed, are actually committing, or are attempting to commit an offense in the presence of the arresting officer;
– When an offense has been committed and the arresting office has probable cause to believe, based on personal knowledge of the facts and circumstance, that you committed the offense;
-When you have escaped from prison or detention or while being transferred from one confinement to another.
FLAG also reminded the public that the legality of one’s arrest must be determined in an inquest proceeding conducted by a civilian prosecutor.
The prosecutor, in a summary proceeding, can order, affirm the legality of one’s arrest and prepare the corresponding complaint or information with the trial court.
”Often the inquest prosecutor will ask the person arrested if s/he desires a preliminary investigation, in which case s/he will be asked to sign a waiver,” FLAG said.
”Do not sign the waiver without being fully informed of the nature and consequences of signing it. Signing the waiver may — and often does — mean that you are going to remain in detention, pending preliminary investigation. It may also mean that you are waiving your right to file cases against those who arrested you.”
FLAG said an arrested individual must take note of the following rights:
- To be informed of your right to remain silent and other constitutional rights);
- To have competent and independent counsel preferably of your own choice; and)
- To be provided with counsel if you cannot afford one.
- In all criminal prosecutions, FLAG said a defendant has the following rights:
- Not to be compelled to testify against yourself;
- To remain silent and to counsel;
- To be informed of the nature and cause of the accusations against you;
- To have a speedy, public, and impartial trial;
- To appeal any conviction;
- To be presumed innocent until the contrary is proved;
- To be present and heard by yourself and counsel;
- To avail yourself of court processes to secure the compulsory attendance of witnesses and the presentation of evidence in your defense;
- To meet the witnesses face-to-face and to cross-examine them;
- The right to a preliminary investigation;
- The right against double jeopardy;
- Before conviction, the right to bail except for capital offenses when evidence of guilt is strong);
- The right to be treated with humanity and with respect for your personal dignity;
- The right to liberty of abode and the right to travel.
FLAG chairman Jose Manuel Diokno earlier called out the administration of President Rodrigo
Duterte for the rising number of suspected drug criminals being killed either in police operations or by alleged vigilantes.
i called BPI Customer Service 89-100 today to ask them to reverse an annual membership fee charge on my credit card. i have had my BPI Credit Card for many years, decades and they have not charged me this fee. also, all other competitive credit cards from other banks no longer charge annual membership fees.
the call center agent told me she will check if their system is back online already.
and that is another issue with BPI – their computer / internet system seem to be offline often and this has been happening for many years. there have been times when you try to transact something at their physical branches and you can encounter their systems to be offline and you can’t transact anything with the bank that you are asked to return. if it happens at the physical bank, then it also happens on their telephone service which was what i encountered today.
i don’t understand why BPI, the country’s second largest bank have not fixed this problem of their computer / internet system being off-line from time to time. i would think being the second largest bank in the country gives them enough smarts and resources to fix this.
not only that, BPI is an Ayala – owned company, the Ayalas also own Globe Telecoms, the country’s second largest cellphone and internet service provider. for sure they are using Globe Telecoms. why wouldn’t Globe make sure BPI has internet service on a 24/7 basis?
unless of course these Ayala companies, BPI and Globe are both incompetent.
and true enough after a few seconds, the call center agent tells me their system is offline. she asked me why i called and i told her about the annual membership fee charge.
these were the 3 stupid things the BPI call center agent said:
- she asked me to call back 89-100 since their system is down – i objected to this and told her the problem is with their company, their system is down that is why she was unable to help me with my problems, i asked why was she inconveniencing their customer by asking me to call back when the problem is with them? i also told her it is not easy to call 89-100. lines tend to be busy and how will i know when the system will be back online for me to call at the right time? she agreed with me it was not right for her to ask me to call back. so she said she will be the one to call me. and that is when she said the 2nd stupid thing.
- she asked me what was the most convenient time for her to call me – this got me really ticked. so i asked her the question – if i told you the most convenient time for me for you to call me, will you be able to call me at the time i identify? it was 11:30 am at the time of our conversation so as a theory, i asked her – if i told you 2:00 pm is convenient, can you guarantee to me all has been fixed by then and will you call me at 2 pm? she answered – no sir, i can’t promise to call you at that time. i asked her why are you not sure if you can make that call? she answered – because sir i do not know what time the system will be back on line. i told her, do you now realize you asked me a stupid question? her reply – yes, sir. and from there, it led her to ask a 3rd stupid question.
- she asked : will you accept my call after i fix the matter, sir? that almost made me drop the telephone. i asked her: miss – why will i not accept your call when you call me? i called you to fix something for me, i gave you my cell number and agreed for you to call me when it’s done, why will i not accept your call? miss, that’s another stupid thing to say. her reply – sorry, sir. i will just call you after we’re back on-line.
i just couldn’t stand it so i gave her advise and told her to stop solely relying on the script they were asked to deliver and start thinking first before saying anything. i told her understand what’s happening in the conversation and respond to it accordingly, don’t just parrot what’s on the script.
that was not the first time i have encountered such conversations with BPI customer service call center personnel and that is why i am sure it was part of the script they are being asked to deliver to their customers.
it is probably the fault of the heads of the call center company that BPI uses and BPI itself for coming up with such an inane script for their customer service personnel to deliver.
there are several problems here that the call center company and BPI have created:
- they have asked their customer service call center agents NOT TO THINK, not to use their brains in talking to customers
- instead of asking them to think and process things on their own, they have asked their call center agents to deliver by rote, like robots a fixed script to customers. this is the rule : do not think, just deliver the script
- lastly, whoever developed the script these call center agents are delivering is an idiot. he/she developed a script that does not correctly predict what happens during calls and these are really lines that make their call center agents sound stupid.
on the bright side, what this means is that the call center agent who attended to me (Mylie Mendoza ID #183xxx) strictly follows the script she was asked to deliver. the only problem is that she did not process the situation at all. but then, i think the rule given to her by her superiors at the call center was for her not to think, just deliver the prepared script.
and this is from the second largest bank in the country!