• Bill hikes reparations for victims of violent crime


    Makati City Rep. Luis Campos Jr. has been filed seeking to raise to P100,000 the maximum amount of compensation that may be received by victims of violent crime such as murder and rape, or their heirs.

    House Bill 4529 proposes to increase to P3,000 the maximum amount of reparation that may be obtained by victims of unlawful imprisonment or arbitrary confinement for every month they were illegally held.

    Republic Act 7309, or An Act Creating a Board of Claims under the Department of Justice (DOJ), provides no more than P10,000 to each “victim of violent crime” and only up to P1,000 per month to each “victim of unjust imprisonment.

    In pushing for the swift passage of the bill, Campos noted that the maximum amounts of indemnity that may be paid by the Board of Claims have not been revised upward since 1992.

    “Congress should now upgrade the ceiling for payable claims, for the benefit of sufferers of violent crime and illicit imprisonment or detention, especially those from poverty-stricken families,” he said.

    Under the law, all benefits paid by the Board of Claims are “without prejudice to the right of the claimant to seek other remedies under existing laws.”

    This means the payments are on top of whatever indemnity that a rape victim, for instance, may be awarded by a court.

    The payments are meant to help reimburse the expenses incurred by claimants for hospitalization, medical treatment, loss of wage, loss of support and other costs directly related to injury.

    The Victims Compensation Fund administered by the DOJ gets its subsidy from one percent of the annual net income of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. and one percent of the proceeds from the sale of military camps in Metro Manila by the Bases Conversion and Development Authority.

    An average of 27 rape cases and 25 murder cases, among other violent crimes, are reported every day across the country, based on the latest statistics from the Philippine National Police.


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