3 suspects in 'walk of shame' are minors: CHR

ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 18 2016 11:05 PM

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MANILA - A Commission on Human Rights official on Wednesday said three of seven suspected drug pushers made to do a "walk of shame" in Tanauan, Batangas are minors.

Jacqueline de Guia, CHR Region 4a and B director, said a quick reaction team discovered that three of the seven individuals made to walk with signs identifying them as drug pushers are minors.

She said one of the suspects is a 14-year-old girl while two others are both 17.

Tanauan Mayor Antonio Halili earlier confirmed he made the suspects walk around the town market while bearing a sign saying, "Ako'y drug pusher, 'wag tularan."

The mayor also ordered the same punishment against a fish thief in 2012 and a rapist last month.

Speaking to DZMM, De Guia said the "walk of shame" could be considered a form of mental torture "because it brings shame upon a suspect who has yet to be proven guilty."

She said that instead of making the suspects take the walk, the police should file charges and let the justice system take over.

The CHR official denied that the commission is bent on defending only the rights of the suspects.

"We believe in the rule of law and the suspects must be punished for violating the rights of other people. It just has to go through the process," she said.

She added that it will be "a mockery of the whole judicial and government system" if the law is left in the hands of one person.

She said the suspects could also file a complaint against the mayor.

RADIO DZMM, May 18, 2016