Trillanes files Senate reso seeking 'Davao death squad' probe

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 19 2016 03:05 PM | Updated as of Sep 19 2016 04:10 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte and Senator Antonio Trillanes IV. File/Composite

MANILA – Senator Antonio Trillanes IV wants the Senate to conduct a separate inquiry into the alleged existence of the Davao Death Squad.

Trillanes filed a resolution seeking a separate probe in the wake of criticism from Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III that the ongoing Senate committee on justice and human rights “went out of bounds” by tackling allegations involving the DDS.

In his resolution, Trillanes cited several reports pointing to the alleged existence of the death squad.

He said, according to the Coalition Against Summary Execution (CASE) and Tambayan Center for the Care of Abused Children, the number of documented death squad killings from August 19, 1998 to February 1, 2009 were 814.

Trillanes also cited an article of Fr. Armando Picardal that said there were 1,424 estimated death squad victims from 1998 to 2015.

He also said that the international non-governmental organization Human Rights Watch has claimed that minors were also among the victims of the death squad.

The Palace has denied President Rodrigo Duterte’s involvement in the alleged death squad, but the usually straightforward president has been mum on the issue up.

In a hearing by the Senate committee on justice and human rights last week, committee chair Sen. Leila de Lima made a surprise by presenting alleged former DDS member Edgar Matobato.

Matobato claimed that long-time Davao City Mayor and now President and his son, Paolo, ordered the killing of scores of suspected criminals and enemies.

Since coming to power over two months ago, Duterte has gained criticisms here and abroad for his bloody war on drugs.

The police said over 1,000 drug suspects have been killed in various drug operations since Duterte assumed power.

ABS-CBN News' Investigative and Research Group, meanwhile said the police have killed 521 drug suspects from May 10 to September 16.

MAP, CHARTS: The Death Toll of the War on Drugs