Ex-mayor linked to drugs serving term in Bilibid

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SANTIAGO CITY, Isabela: The family of former city Mayor Jose ‘Pempe’ Miranda expressed disgust over the inclusion of his name on a list of narco-politicians submitted to President Rodrigo Duterte, saying their patriarch has been detained for two years now at the National Bilibid Prisons (NBP), the national penitentiary, in Muntinlupa City (Metro Manila).

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Joseph Miranda, former Sangguniang Kabataan Federation president here, said it is a “mistake” that his father’s name was included in the list.

The former mayor is serving the maximum 15 years sentence at the NBP after the court convicted him as the mastermind in the frustrated murder of Reward Alvarez, younger brother of former senator Heherson Alvarez.

In 1994, Miranda led the conversion of Santiago as the first city in the Cagayan Valley that he served for 16 years.

The young Miranda said their family was a die-hard Duterte supporter until they heard the President over television mentioning their father’s name as among the narco-politicians.

”My father is a victim here and he doesn’t deserve to be called a drug lord because never was he involved in any illegal drugs,” Joseph added.

He admitted, though, that his father was involved in illegal gambling.

”Our family is ready to meet with President Duterte to clear the name of my father,” Joseph said.

He believes that his father may have been mistaken for his namesake who is known to be a drug lord in Region 3.

“We are very sad and we have lost hope that my father will be released earlier through a presidential pardon because of this unfortunate mistake and very wrong inclusion of his name in the list given to the President,” Joseph said.

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