ILOILO

Lawyer survives ambush in Capiz

A MEMBER of the National Union of Peoples' Lawyers (NUPL) survived an ambush in Panit-an, Capiz Monday morning, September 23.

Lawyer Criselda Heredia said she was attacked around 11:30 a.m. Monday.

"I was just ambushed. Two bullet holes sa car ko...I just found out nga marami pala ang tama ng bala. Ang nakita ko lang ang sa window sa backseat. There are nine bullets recovered by the police. The police however suspect that there are more," she said in a Facebook post.

She said she was driving her car together with her daughter and a client when they were shot. She came from a hearing when the attach happened.

The NUPL-Panay condemned the incident and blamed the Armed Forces of the Philippines and Philippine National Police for the incident.

"Atty. Heredia has been red-tagged in posters and has been personally threatened by a military agent who visited her office and warned her to slow down on her human rights advocacy," the NULP said in a statement.

Heredia used to be a cultural worker who performed musical numbers during the protest action. Aside from lawyering, she does some painting jobs and has held one person exhibit in Iloilo City and Roxas City.

"Since July 2019, when President Rodrigo Duterte came to power, attacks against lawyers have mounted, 47 deaths as of this time. The figure also includes judges and public prosecutors. The attempt on Atty. Heredia came a day after the media ran stories of lawyers worldwide asking the Duterte administration to protect Philippine lawyers," the statement added.

In 2018, Heredia was red-tagged and her photo was included in a poster showing alleged "terrorists."

"Red-tagging the people's lawyers! This is being spread around Iloilo City. No one except the military, the state agents, is capable of doing this," Heredia said in a Facebook post.

"If anything happens to me, the military will have to be blamed!" she added.


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