DOJ sends official to Iligan City to push Maute cases

Ina Reformina, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 30 2017 10:07 PM | Updated as of May 30 2017 10:08 PM

The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Tuesday sent one of its undersecretaries to Iligan City "to oversee [the] creation of Panel of Prosecutors for Maute cases."

DOJ Undersecretary Erickson Balmes said Undersecretary Renante Orceo flew to Iligan City today.

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II previously said Mindanao prosecutors voiced out concern for their safety if the trials would be held in Marawi City or nearby provinces.

Nearby Marawi City was attacked on May 23 by the Maute group, leading President Duterte to declare martial law and suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus in the Mindanao region. 

As of writing, 89 Maute members have been indicted for kidnapping and kidnapping with murder, and 4 Maute members face charges for illegal possession of improvised explosive device and incendiary devices.

These criminal information were filed with the Malabang, Lanao del Sur Regional Trial Court.

DOJ is poised to ask the Supreme Court to designate special courts outside of Mindanao to try all cases against Maute group members.