Sunday August 19, 2018

Victims’ testimonies doomed Scully, partner

ACTING Regional State Prosecutor Merlynn Uy on Thursday, June 14, said the conviction of Australian pedophile Peter Gerald Scully was based on the merits of the case and personal testimonies of his child-victims.

Uy said the testimonies of two of Scully's victims were credible, consistent and believable.

The court on Wednesday, June 13, found Scully and his Filipina partner Carme Ann Alvarez “guilty beyond reasonable doubt” for qualified human trafficking and five counts of rape by sexual assault charges.

Both have been sentenced to life imprisonment and ordered to pay their victims in the six cases more than P5 million in damages.

"The judge said you cannot imagine that a child of a tender age could invent such specific circumstances," Uy said.

Uy said the prosecution panel managed to oppose the strategies employed by the defense to delay the promulgation of the cases.

She said the judge gave the defense so many chances to present their side and cross-examine the private complainants.

"Scully has battery of lawyers and from the very beginning (you can see) the strategies of the defense. Plenty of motions, pleadings to delay the prosecution but we managed to oppose it," Uy said.

Scully is also facing another batch of more than 50 multiple cases of child abuse, kidnapping, human trafficking, voyeurism, sexual assault, and murder in the city, Bukidnon and Surigao City, which are all under trial.

Uy said they are awaiting the decision of the Supreme Court on their petition to transfer the venue of the cases from Bukidnon and Surigao to Cagayan de Oro City and have it consolidated in RTC Branch 37.

"The proceedings in Bukidnon and Surigao have been suspended while awaiting the decision of the SC," she said.

Uy said the next batch of cases involved Scully's videos that circulated worldwide which showed children as young as 18 months old being abused.

"The first batch was just the tip of the iceberg. The second batch is more gruesome and it is pending in court," Uy added.

Uy said all the victims of Scully have been placed under the Witness Protection Program of the Department of Justice.

Meanwhile, the Department of Social Welfare and Development Office (DSWD)-Northern Mindanao will continue its psychosocial intervention and therapy to the victims.

DSWD regional director Nestor Ramos said the conviction of Scully hopefully will mark the beginning of healing for the two girls, a new chapter in children’s long term recovery and journey to normalcy.