FPRRD condemns police’s 'excessive force’ in serving Quiboloy’s warrant of arrest

Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KOJC) members and missionaries faced off with fully armed CIDG and SAF troopers outside the KOJC Compound along Buhangin in Davao City on Monday, July 10. Authorities attempted a forced entry at the KOJC Compound in Davao City while members were having their daily devotional prayers.
Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KOJC) members and missionaries faced off with fully armed CIDG and SAF troopers outside the KOJC Compound along Buhangin in Davao City on Monday, July 10. Authorities attempted a forced entry at the KOJC Compound in Davao City while members were having their daily devotional prayers.SMNI News

FORMER President Rodrigo R. Duterte has strongly condemned the excessive force used by non-local police officers during a simultaneous raid on the properties of Pastor Apollo C. Quiboloy while attempting to serve a warrant of arrest on Monday, June 10, 2024.

In a statement released on Monday, June 10, Duterte criticized the manner in which the raid was conducted, highlighting the use of unnecessary force. 

"This incident occurred within a place of worship and on school premises, which is absolutely unacceptable," he said.

Duterte was referring to the incident in which the PNP-SAF and CIDG stormed the Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KOJC) compounds in Buhangin and Tamayong in Davao City, and in Sarangani in a coordinated effort to arrest the fugitive pastor.

The former president questioned whether such aggressive tactics have become the hallmark of the current administration's dealings with individuals who are merely accused of crimes and have not been proven guilty. 

The raid on the properties of Quiboloy, who faces charges of child abuse, sexual abuse, and qualified trafficking has drawn significant attention and criticism.

Duterte also expressed concern and criticism over the administration's treatment of its critics and supporters alike. 

"Will they exhibit the same lack of self-restraint they have shown towards critics of this administration when dealing with their supporters?" he added.

Duterte also questions the administration's commitment to upholding constitutional rights. "How can this administration guarantee the preservation of the constitutional rights of our fellow Filipinos when even the most fundamental of these rights are being trampled upon and blatantly violated?" he stated.

Sara shares father’s sentiments

Moreover, Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte also issued an official statement on Tuesday, June 11, 2024, regarding the same incident, echoing her father’s sentiments and calling for proper and humane enforcement of the law.

“Kaisa ako sa mga nananawagan ng maayos, katanggap-tanggap, at makataong pagpapairal ng batas at pagtataguyod ng hustisya sa ating bansa (I stand with those calling for the proper, acceptable, and humane enforcement of the law and the promotion of justice in our country),” she stated.

“Kasunod ito ng magulong pagpapatupad ng arrest warrant kay Pastor Apollo C. Quiboloy kahapon na sanhi ng kwestyonableng pagpapakita ng labis na pwersa at otoridad sa harap ng mga sibilyan (This follows the chaotic execution of the arrest warrant for Pastor Apollo C. Quiboloy yesterday, which involved a questionable display of excessive force and authority in front of civilians),” she added.

Vice President Duterte urged for a more restrained approach, particularly emphasizing the safety of civilians, including children, during law enforcement actions. 

She concluded her statement with a call for unity and peace.

 "Sana ay mapanatili natin ang respeto, kaayusan, at kapayapaan sa ating bansa. Maging laging mahinahon din sana ang mga Dabawenyo at ang buong sambayanang Pilipino, at magkaisa ang lahat sa pananalangin para sa katotohanan at hustisya (Let us maintain respect, order, and peace in our country. May the people of Davao and the entire Filipino nation always remain calm, and may everyone unite in prayer for truth and justice,)" she stated.

‘Laden with irregularities’

Meanwhile, the Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KJOC) has insisted that various special units of the Philippine National Police (PNP) conducted a surprise three-hour-long search warrant at the four properties of the fugitive preacher, Pastor Apollo Quiboloy instead of a warrant of arrest on the early morning of Monday, June 10, 2024.

Warrants of arrests were simultaneously conducted against the televangelist and his five cohorts from 3:45 to 6 a.m. at the KOJC Compound in Buhangin near Davao International Airport, The Prayer Mountain, and The Glory Mountain – both in Barangay Tamayong, Calinan – as well as on the KOJC’s property in Kitbog, Sarangani Province.

Despite the explanation of the Police Regional Office-Davao Region (PRO-Davao) to SunStar Davao, citing the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, KOJC reiterated that the tension between the followers and hundreds of law enforcers occurred due to the forced entry of the authorities from PNP-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG) and Special Action Force (SAF) troops, further described as “obstruction of justice” by Quiboloy’s legal counsels.

Under  Rule 113, Section 11 as amended on December 1, 2000, officers have the right to break into a building or enclosure to arrest if refused entry after announcing their authority and purpose.

“We strongly condemn the manner of implementing the arrest warrants insofar as they were not only laden with irregularities, but they were excessive and overkill. The PNP deployed special battalions who were in full battle gear, some CIDG officials were even seen wearing bulletproof vests, and hundreds of police personnel in anti-riot gear and shields strategically positioned themselves at the KOJC Compound,” the official statement said on Tuesday, June 11. 

Quiboloy’s camp also explained that at least three of his followers sustained injuries at KOJC Central compound and nine were arrested and/ or handcuffed after the gate at Glory Mountain was smashed and destroyed by police officials. 

“Clearly, the raids resulted in damage to KOJC’s property, unjust handcuffing or arrest of KOJC members, and injuries to several individuals, among others,” the statement maintained, adding that the implementation of the arrest warrants was unjust and excessive. 

KOJC also raised their doubts after CIDG had filed their Returns of Warrant of Arrest before the Regional Trial Court (RTC-Branch) earlier this year, stating: “Moreover, the implementation of the warrants of arrest is also questionable as the CIDG has already filed their Returns of Warrant of Arrest as early as May 14, 2024 before the RTC Branch 159 of Pasig City. Thus, as far as the KOJC leaders are concerned, the warrants have already been implemented.”

To recall, PRO-Davao spokesperson Police Major Catherine Dela Rey clarified that the move was lawful and no laws were violated for the entire duration.

“Dili to sya raid amoa gibuhat, kundi warrant of arrest ra kay naga-subay man ta sa balaod. Walay search warrant nga nahitabo. Kung makakita mo, gi-sirad-an nila ang mga compounds and wala gyud sila nagpasulod, which is according sa law, allowed mi to enter the premises because they are all lawfully accused sa korte (It was not a raid, but rather the execution of an arrest warrant in accordance with the law. There was no search warrant involved. If you noticed, they closed the compounds and did not let us in, which according to the law, allows us to enter because they are lawfully accused in court),” Dela Rey said. DEF

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