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Patrick Ramos May 17, 2017

10-1758 Spec Pro Reaction Paper Atty. Francisco
Extrajudicial Killings topic

Extrajudicial killings are without a question rampant within the
Philippines at this day and age. Extrajudicial killing is when a person is
killed without observing due process of the law. This means that he is killed
without any investigation on the matter or the side of the accused ever
being heard. It is enshrined in our constitution in Article III section that life
must always be protected and it cannot be taken away without due
process. The section provides:
“Section 1. No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property
without due process of law, nor shall any person be denied the equal
protection of the laws.”
Due process of law as the writer has learned in his law classes, is
when an accused is given the right to be heard in a judicial proceeding and
to present evidence of his innocence. This involves filing a case with the
prosecutor and that prosecutor brining a complaint to the courts of the
Philippines. It will speak of admitting into court pieces of evidence from
both parties. It will also involve a trial wherein the facts will be established
and questioned which will ultimately end with a decision of either conviction
or acquittal. It is paramount and basic in the study of law that a principle in
criminal law is always observed. This principle/doctrine is that everyone is
presumed innocent until proven guilty.
These principles which the writer has learned and studied throughout
law school are now being thrown outside the window with the dawn of
extrajudicial killings. In extrajudicial killings, the accused is not given an
opportunity to prove his innocence nor any other opportunity accorded to
him by the Constitution. The accused is simply profiled as a drug-pusher or
user and is immediately killed based on that unfounded speculation. The
dead can no longer defend themselves hence it defeats the purpose of due
process altogether.
It is vital to know the backdrop of this event. The current
administration has noted that majority of the crimes in the country
(homicide, murder, rape) are committed by a person who is under the
influence of drugs. It is undisputed that what the President said is backed

Extra-judicial killing will not allow such change to occur. the writer completely condemns extra-judicial killing. There is no justice that can be done for the victims or their families. Due to the various number of deaths due to the war against drugs. The writer is not claiming that the Drug problem should not be addressed. This leaves a gap and hole in justice which the writer strongly believes in. contrary to the Constitution. He believes that the Dangerous Drug Act already enacted is sufficient to catch and apprehend these drug-users and pushers. However. this is a problem existent due to the nature of the killings. Hence. If there are any inadequacies or lack of strictness. . This is vague and does not seem to fit into the judicial system that the Philippines has. However. If no one files with the courts. As a law student and aspiring lawyer. the writer feels that the law is already in place and all that is left is to implement it.up with data and factual basis. All that is seen is a dead body with a sign stating “ Wag tularan”. No one knows who did it hence no one can file a case in the courts. There is a strong foundation for this belief as can be seen from the history of the President in his stint as mayor of Davao City. it is still not enough reason to wage an all-out war against drugs in the manner being done today. then no award can be given to the families of the victims. This is essentially manipulating the public into believing that the President authorizes the killings. Another negative view the writer has on the issue at hand is that it leaves no room for accountability. The writer does not agree with Extrajudicial killings as it is contrary to due process and essentially. no one has filed a case regarding these extra-judicial killings. these are merely speculations because until today. the media is now painting a black picture against the President. Therefore. The occurrence of extra judicial killings makes it tantamount to civil war against these potential substance users. as a law student. but nothing has yet to be proven. The killings are done in the middle of the night with few or no witnesses at all. He observes that there are people who had a dark history but eventually fixed their life up. killing people extra judicially is still not justified. There is speculation that the supposed killers are the police who are under orders from the President. The writer also takes note of the fact that people can change. he is merely stating that it can be handled with judicially and legally. Another position that the writer has is that the media is benefitting most from the numerous incidents.

There is no available and known system for picking out the drug-users and pushers. the media is already portraying that Duterte is the man behind the killings. yet there are still numerous occasions that only accuse the killer to be a police officer. anybody could simply use a police officer and kill a potential drug-user or pusher and the public could easily construe this as an act done by a police officer. That kind of discretion must not be left to the Police officers because as the writer has learned. that is still leaving much to the discretion to the police officers to determine whether to commit the act or not. Anybody could be a victim even though he/she is already a reformed user or worse. That kind of interpretation is left to the Courts according to the Constitution. Another point the writer would like to make is that the issue has brought about fear in the Filipino people. no one knowns exactly how these victims were chosen. There are talks that there is surveillance being conducted by the police which lasts for days and weeks before a “killing” is done. the randomness is frightening. despite the lack of proof against the President. There may be some instances wherein police officers admit that they commited the act. It seems random and in this case. What the officers can only do would be to investigate potential criminals but never to strike and kill them. they must only enforce the law and not interpret it. The public is close-minded to the possibility that a private citizen could have dressed up as a police officer and committed the act himself. It is vital to note that the Media has used its influence over the Filipino people to make them think that the President is approving a bloodbath against drugs. It fails to present the complete excerpts and interviews done by the President but merely shows the public excerpts wherein the . They manipulate the Filipino people in their agendas thus dividing the nation. This is a sad reality that the writer notes which spurred from the issue of extra-judicial killings. The next point that the writer wishes to make is that it is unclear whether or not the police officers are really the culprits behind the act. Media construes these events to mean that the police officers are committing these crimes under the direction of the President. Assuming that it is true. This is due to the fact that until this day. They cannot interpret whether a person is a criminal or not unless they catch him in the act. Again this is where the role of media comes into play. In the Philippine setting. was never a user at all.However. This is essentially public prosecution being done by the media.

the death penalty will also clean the streets because it would be a strong detergent against those who would like to use drugs. This solution is to bring back the death penalty and to amend the Dangerous Drug Act to impose death penalty for anyone caught using and selling drugs. This is wrong and the writer completely abhors this kind of behavior from the media because he learned the proper and ideal role of media in his Media Law class. However the reality today is that Media is presenting information that is entertaining and eye-catching at the expense of truth and accuracy. Police officers must now only apprehend the accused and bring him to their police stations where criminal complaints may be properly filed. discretion must never be left at the hands of the police officers. But again he goes back to the Constitutional Provision he cited earlier. This is vital because as pointed out earlier by the writer. the death penalty will now have a system that can be followed by the police. Firstly. the writer completely is against the extra-judicial killings of his fellow Filipino citizens. The writer’s recommendation of bringing back the death penalty might be met with criticisms and talks of human rights. the death penalty will achieve the same goal as the extra- judicial killings. He has given several points that made him firm with his position against the killings being done in the name of the war against drugs. There are several reasons why the writer believes that the death penalty will be a good recommendation to the problem of Extra-judicial killings. majority of those who commit crimes are under the influence of drugs. No person may be deprived of life without due process means that death penalty is not expressly prohibited by the Constitution.President will look bad. Overall. However. Again. Media must present to the public information that is truthful and accurate. It would still instill fear in the hearts and minds of the drug-users because they could always be found to be guilty and sentenced to death. of extra-judicial killings would be to clean the streets of the Philippines of drug-users and pushers in order to bring down the crime rate in the country. The goal. . This leaves the discretion to the courts and out of the hands of the police officers. the writer believes that there is one solution that could solve the problem of extra-judicial killing. Secondly. However. as what the writer perceives.

Unlike the extra-judicial killings where the victims are left with no legal remedy. Now the victims of the accused or convicted will have recourse because they now know where to go for recompense. The last point is that the death penalty is more in line with the system of justice and order being studied by the writer. The imposition of the death penalty will now allow the accused to defend themselves in trial and give them their day in court. In conclusion. . This is essential because that right is enshrined in our Constitution hence it must be followed and upheld. the writer strongly disagrees with the killings being conducted today and believes that the imposition of the death penalty would produce the same result without the expense of justice and due process. the victims can now seek the help of the courts to seek redress to their proper grievances. Next point is that bringing back the death penalty will impose a system of accountability.