Palparan to be arraigned Monday

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Sunday, August 17, 2014

MANILA -- Detained retired Major General Jovito Palparan, who is facing serious illegal detention and kidnapping cases, is set to be arraigned on Monday at the Malolos Regional Trial Court in Bulacan.

Palparan evaded the arm of the law for almost three years before he was arrested on August 12 in his hideout in Sta. Mesa, Manila.

Jovito Palparan
MANILA. Former Army General Jovito Palparan talks to the media at the National Bureau of Investigation following his capture by NBI agents Tuesday, August 12, 2014, in Sta. Mesa, Manila. (AP)

He was temporarily under the custody of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) although the Malolos court's branch 14 already ordered his detention in a regular cell at the Bulacan Provincial Jail.

Earlier, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said they have to ensure Palparan's security before moving him to jail.

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, who visited Palparan on Saturday, is pushing for his transfer to a military detention facility.

“We were informed of the existing threats to the life of General Palparan. To make sure that he is secure, it would be best that he is transferred to a detention facility of the AFP. This is also proper since the alleged crimes he committed were related to his functions as a commander in the Philippine Army,” said Trillanes.

He warned of demoralization among the ranks in the AFP if Palparan's safety would be compromised.

"This may set a precedent that our soldiers will have to face lawsuits for performing their duty as members of the military after their separation from active service," said Trillanes, a former Navy officer who was jailed for seven years for leading mutinies against the Arroyo administration.

Palparan, former commander of the 7th Infantry Division in Central Luzon, was allegedly responsible for the sudden disappearance of University of the Philippines (UP) students Karen Empeño and Sherlyn Cadapan, both alleged political activists, in Bulacan in June 2006.

In a statement, the mothers of Empeño and Cadapan called Palparan “a coward and a liar” for asking the court to let him stay at the NBI following reports that the New People's Army (NPA) has a standing order to have him killed.

"He (Palparan) said he is prepared to be jailed anywhere. But now, he is again defying the court order. Before the warrant of arrest against Palparan came out, he said he is ready to face his charges. Instead he went into hiding for almost three years," Linda Cadapan and Connie Empeño, mothers of Sherlyn and Karen, respectively, said.

The mothers fear that justice becomes "dim" again should Palparan's motion be granted. (Sunnex)

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