By JUSTIN UMALI
LAGUNA – The Mamburao Regional Trial Court Branch 44 dismissed criminal charges of illegal possession of firearms and explosives against 20-year-old activist Nadeline Joyce Corazon, September 20.
Corazon, a volunteer for the Katipunan ng mga Samahang Magbubukid sa Timog Katagalugan (Kasama-TK), and fellow activist Ray Irvine Malaborbor were arrested by the 76th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army last July 27 in barangay Pinaturilan, Santa Cruz, Occidental Mindoro.
Both Corazon and Malaborbor were tagged as members of the New People’s Army. According to Corazon, she and Malaborbor were forced by the military to admitting they were “communist rebels.”
Corazon said she was subjected to almost 24 hours of interrogation and illegal detention before being transferred to the Santa Cruz Municipal Police Station. They were eventually transferred to Mamburao Provincial Jail.
Corazon, through the help of Karapatan-ST and Bagong Alyansang Makabayan-ST, filed a motion to quash the criminal charges. The motion was granted on September 20 on grounds of a lack of jurisdiction over the persons accused.
Meanwhile, Malaborbor is facing charges of two counts of murder issued by the Gumaca RTC Branch 61, Quezon province. His arrest was covered by a warrant for illegal possession of firearms issued in Infanta, Quezon.
Casey Cruz, BAYAN-ST spokesperson, said that Corazon filed a complaint with the Commission of Human Rights Region IV-B against the perpetrators of their arrest, detention and torture.
“The AFP [Armed Forces of the Philippines] and PNP [Philippine National Police] must be held accountable for all the human rights violations they have committed,” Cruz said. “They are desperate to silence the Duterte regime’s critics by using the bogeyman of communism and inventing trumped-up charges.”