Duterte still bristling over Juvenile Justice Law

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Sunday, June 22, 2014


DAVAO CITY Mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte once again hit former Senator Francis Kiko Pangilinan, who is now the presidential assistant for Food Security and Agricultural Modernization, following the increase of the number of crime incidents here because of the juvenile justice law.

In his television program "Gikan sa Masa, Para sa Masa" on Sunday, Duterte again blamed the Republic Act 9344 or The Juvenile Justice and Welfare System for the trouble it caused to local government nationwide, particularly in curbing criminality in which some were committed by those children in conflict with the law (CICL).

"What is really bugging the peace and order or the public security is the crime incidents committed by minors. Ang balaod ni Pangilinan ang nakadaot jud (It’s the Pangilinan Law that messed up with this). What brought chaos to criminal existence is his law. Amigo ko na, pero pag-abot sa public interest, walay amigo-amigo (He’s my friend but when it comes to public interest, I don’t let friendship stand in the way)," Duterte said.

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With R.A. 9344, children under 15 could not be charged with a crime. For 15 to 18 year old juvenile, diversion proceedings away from the court are the preferred method for responding to the crimes that carry a possible sentence of six years or less.

"[Those] children [in conflict with the law] are set free because of this law. It was a lousy job. It s***s. It is the law s***s. It promoted crime roared the young people into a force believe that they are vulnerable, invincible because they are minors," Duterte said.

"Wala magkulang ang police. In fact, maluoy ko aning [Davao City Police Office director Senior Supt. Vicente] Danao. He is really pressured by the number of incidents of the crime index. Ang problema ani, wala man pud siya’y mabuhat. Bisan pa arestuhon tanan bata (CICL) sa mga police, buhian jud na pag ka buntag (I pity Danao, but he can’t do anything because they have to release children in conflict with the law)," he added.

The mayor have been persistent about amending the juvenile justice law, blaming it as behind the rising of crime incidents committed by the CICL to the point that he had to make personal comment about the former senator.

Davao City Police Office (DCPO) earlier reported that 30 percent of the crime index here is committed by youth offenders. Most of the crimes committed were robbery and theft, adding that most suspects are habitual offenders, the youngest is 10 years old.

Its record also showed the index crime went up from 1,182 cases in April-May 2013 to 1,332 cases this year in the same period or an increase of eleven percent, while the non-index crime decrease from 1,584 last year to 1,550 this year or an average of two percent decrease.

Meanwhile, the crime volume for the same period went up from 2,766 cases last year to 2,882 cases this year or an increase of four percent, while the crime solution efficiency is down from 2,766 solved cases to 1,018 or a decrease of 36.80 percent decrease.

Duterte ordered all the concerned law enforcement agencies in Davao City to closely watch these children in conflict with the law. He also called on the parents to discipline and monitor their children, to avoid the latter in committing crimes.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on June 23, 2014.

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