MANILA - The Supreme Court (SC) has ordered the Philippine National Police (PNP), Armed Forces of the Philippines, and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to conduct a deeper probe into the alleged abduction and torture of Filipino-American activist Melissa Roxas.
In a 3-page en banc resolution dated April 16, the high court adopted, with modifications, the findings of the Court of Appeals (CA) that conducted hearings on petitions for writ of amparo and writ of habeas data in connection with Roxas' case.
The appellate court recommended the provisional dismissal of the case but the high court ruled to have it archived instead.
"[P]remises considered, this Court Resolves to Adopt with Modification the recommendation of the Court of Appeals in its Evaluation Report as follows... the Philippine National Police, the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the National Bureau of Investigation are ordered to continue and undertake a deeper probe and investigation of the incidents with the end in view of identifying the perpetrators of the complained abduction and abuses and of the eventual filing of cases for said resultant crimes," the resolution read.
Roxas, along with 2 companions, went missing for 6 days in May 2009. Her camp claimed that the 3 were abducted by military agents in La Paz, Tarlac while preparing for a humanitarian activity. Roxas later claimed she was tortured by her abductors.
The petitions for writ of amparo and habeas data were subsequently filed with the high court against then Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, then-Defense Sec. Gilbert Teodoro, then-AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Victor Ibrado, then-PNP Chief Dir. Gen. Jesus Verzosa, along with Gen. Delfin Bangit, Supt. Rudy Gamido Lacadin and alias 'Dex,' 'RC' and 'Rose.'
In its findings, the appellate court stated that the petitions should be dismissed "without prejudice, nonetheless, to any evidence that may surface or be eventually discovered in the future against any of them."