MANILA - The Philippine National Police on Monday said it will consider the age and health of First Lady and Ilocos Norte Rep. Imelda Romualdez Marcos in her looming arrest for graft.
"May edad na kasi (she is already elderly). We have to take into consideration the edad, the age," PNP Chief, Director General Oscar Albayalde told reporters.
"In any arrest, anybody for that matter, that has to be taken into consideration: the health, the age."
The Sandiganbayan on Friday found Marcos, 89, guilty in 7 counts of graft for using her Cabinet position to maintain Swiss bank accounts during her husband's presidency and dictatorship from 1965 to 1986.
The PNP received information that a warrant of arrest may be issued against Marcos on Monday, said Albayalde.
He said he has instructed the police Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) to lead the potential arrest.
The PNP "will accord the same respect" to Marcos as it did with Senator Antonio Trillanes, who was briefly taken into police custody last September in connection with a failed 2007 uprising, said Albayalde.
The police Custodial Center, he added, is ready if the court orders Marcos' detention there.
"Palaging malinis iyan. We welcome anybody na biglaang mga ganiyan," he said.
(It's always clean. We welcome anybody with unexpected cases like that.)
"We have custodial facilities that are always ready to accommodate itong politicians or other high ranking officials of the government," he added.
Marcos, in a statement, said her counsel will appeal the conviction.
President Rodrigo Duterte, an ally of the Marcoses, will not interfere in the former First Lady's legal battle, Malacañang earlier said.
Jose Manuel "Chel" Diokno, De La Salle University College of Law founding dean, said Marcos should face jail time despite her age because "the people have to see that anyone can be held accountable whether rich or poor."
"There should be jail time, I believe, because there has to be, the people have to see that anyone can be held accountable whether rich or poor," said Diokno, whose father was a martial law victim.