Saudi Arabia executes Pinay found guilty of murder

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 31 2019 09:44 AM | Updated as of Jan 31 2019 11:10 AM

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MANILA (UPDATE) - Saudi Arabia has executed a Filipina household worker found guilty in a 2015 murder case, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Thursday. 

Authorities in the oil-rich kingdom carried out the sentence against the 39-year-old Filipina last Tuesday and her relatives were notified of her death the next day, said DFA Assistant Secretary Elmer Cato. 

"Gusto naming makiramay sa mga kaanak ng ating kababayan na household service worker sa Saudi Arabia na na-execute noong Tuesday after she was found guilty of murder," he told radio DZMM. 

(We want to condole with the relatives of our compatriot, a household worker in Saudi Arabia who was executed on Tuesday after she was found guilty of murder.) 

The Saudi Supreme Judicial Council classified the Filipina's case as one in which blood money does not apply under the Shariah law, said Cato, adding that he could not discuss details of the case. 

In earlier cases, Filipinos in death row in Saudi Arabia were saved by paying blood money to families of individuals they had killed, mostly in self-defense. 

The Embassy provided the overseas worker with a lawyer to assist her in all stages of her trial, sent representatives to visit her, and regularly updated her family in the Philippines about her case, he added in a statement. 

"We exerted all efforts to save her life," he said in the interview. 

Cato declined to identify the overseas worker and her hometown, as requested by her family. 

The DFA is arranging the repatriation of the Filipina's remains and is assessing if it would shoulder the expenses, he said. 

In 2017, a quarter of the 2.3 million overseas Filipino workers were in Saudi Arabia, making it the leading destination for the workforce, according to a report released last year by the Philippine Statistics Authority. 

Saudi authorities in 2015 executed Filipino construction worker Joselito Zapanta, who was found guilty of killing his Sudanese employer. The victim's family had refused to execute an affidavit of forgiveness in exchange for blood money.

Another Filipino, Carlito Lana, was beheaded in 2014 in Saudi Arabia for shooting a Saudi national and running him over with a car.