Human rights body hopes charges dropped vs lolo who allegedly stole mangoes

Mico Abarro, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 22 2022 03:16 PM | Updated as of Jan 22 2022 05:34 PM

MANILA—The Commission on Human Rights on Saturday said it hoped the dispute involving an 80-year-old man who allegedly stole mangoes in Pangasinan would be settled and ultimately the charges dropped.

CHR spokesperson Atty. Jacqueline de Guia said in a statement that the incident highlighted the importance of knowing one's rights and the availability of legal assistance. 

The elderly man was identified as Nardo Flores, who was temporarily released earlier this week after posting a P6,000 bail. 

"The Commission on Human Rights hopes that alternative means to settle the dispute be explored, an amicable agreement be reached, and possibly a desistance of the charge filed given the circumstances of the complaint and condition of the accused," De Guia said. 

She praised the Asingan municipal police for how its personnel handled the case, as well as the Public Attorney's Office providing legal assistance to Flores. 

Members of the Asingan police chipped in to help pay for Flores' bail. 

"In the end, we must remember that laws are in place not only to exact accountability from perpetrators, but also to protect the vulnerable when needed," De Guia said. 

Flores was arrested on January 13, 2022, and was detained for a week after he allegedly stole more than 10 kilos of mangoes to sell. He alleged having planted the tree that grew the mangoes. 

The elderly man still faces charges of stealing, and is set to be arraigned on February 8, 2022.