MANILA - The Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) said Monday it is investigating Bureau of Corrections director-general Nicanor Faeldon as reports surfaced that he signed release orders for convicts of heinous crimes.
The anti-corruption body may also question Senator Ronald "Bato" Dela Rosa, who previously headed the BuCor, PACC Commissioner Greco Belgica said.
"We can ask Sen. Dela Rosa to give clarification, to give clarity to the issues that may come up. Hindi naman masama 'yun eh (There's nothing wrong with that)," Belgica told ANC.
Faeldon on Monday faced a Senate inquiry over the alleged questionable application of the good conduct time allowance law.
Under the law, a convict's sentence may be reduced if he or she exhibited good conduct while in prison. Data from the BuCor showed that a total of 1,914 prisoners convicted of heinous crimes have been granted early release since 2014, a year after the amendment of the good conduct time allowance (GCTA) law.
In his testimony, Faeldon said no convict is excluded in the granting of GCTA based on the law's implementing rules and regulations.
“That’s why in their computation… all convicted of any crime when they behave well in jail, they were granted GCTA,” Faeldon said.
He said based on the law’s IRR, a prisoner’s GCTA can only be suspended during the month that an infraction was committed.
“In the succeeding month that they behaved well, the granting of GCTA resumes regardless of the gravity of these offenses,” he said.
The releases followed the enactment of a 2013 law expanding the computation of GCTA to detention time. The Supreme Court upheld its retroactive application.
"We want to know if there are prisoners who are convicted of heinous crimes that were released. If that was the case then that is a clear violation of the law," Belgica said.
The PACC will also summon other BuCor officials to explain the implementation of the GCTA law, Belgica said.
"We want to see the documents and hear his (Faeldon) side and explanation on what transpired with the GCTA and the freeing of these 2000 criminals," he said.