De Lima seeks probe of ‘DOA’ police practice

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ALARMED by reports about the alleged practice of some police officers to conceal incidents of extrajudicial killings (EJKs) and to tamper with evidence in a crime scene, a lawmaker has asked the Senate to investigate a number of anti-drug operations where drug suspects end up dead before arriving in hospitals.

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Sen. Leila de Lima, in filing Senate Resolution 421, cited the special report of a foreign news agency that exposed the alleged practice of certain police officers particularly in Quezon City and Manila police districts in using hospitals to hide incidents of EJKs.

She said that based on the special report published on June 29, “ police were sending corpses to hospitals to destroy evidence at crime scenes and hide the fact that they were executing drug suspects.”

De Lima, who is currently detained at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center in Camp Crame in Quezon City on drug charges, also cited a sharp increase in the number of drug suspects declared “dead on arrival” or “DOA” in the two districts.

She said the report showed an 85-percent increase in DOA cases since the drug war of President Rodrigo Duterte started in July.

“It was observed that most of the victims rushed by police to the concerned hospitals were killed from lethal wounds to the forehead, chest or heart often fired from less than a meter away…” de Lima stated in her resolution.

She said scene of the crime operatives and the National Bureau of Investigation agreed that moving the bodies of the victims effectively obliterates the crime scene.

De Lima added that the report points to a distressing yet reparable anomaly where demands for truth and justice are being disregarded by an apparent criminal enterprise within the ranks of the Philippine National Police (PNP).

‘In light of these serious claims and allegations, the Senate should review existing legislation and policies and recommend amendments to existing procedures on arrest, search and seizures,” the resolution said.

It is imperative to investigate the allegations against certain members of the PNP, the senator said, to determine the veracity of the report and ensuring that lapses or willfully malicious acts are addressed and prevented from being committed with impunity.

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