PNP files raps vs alleged kidnappers of 19 rescued IP children

PNP files raps vs alleged kidnappers of 19 rescued IP children
(Photos courtesy of Philippine National Police-Public Information Office Facebook Page)

DAVAO CITY – The Philippine National Police (PNP) has filed criminal charges against seven persons allegedly responsible for training 19 Indigenous People’s (IP) children of Davao del Norte as future New People’s Army (NPA) combatants.

The Lumad children of Davao del Norte who were “recruited” by community organizers and brought to Cebu City sometime 2018, allegedly to undergo armed revolutionary training as future NPA combatants were rescued by authorities from the University of San Carlos Retreat House Talamban Campus in Talamban, Cebu City on February 15.

In a report, police filed criminal charges for kidnapping, child exploitation and human trafficking against the suspects who were arrested when PNP Women and Children Protection operatives, and workers from the Department of Social Workers and Development (DSWD) rescued  the 19 Lumad minors in Cebu City.

Via video teleconference from the Police Regional Office in Camp Osmeña, Cebu City, the seven respondents were presented for Inquest proceedings before the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office of Davao del Norte at the Hall of Justice, Capitol Site, Mankilam, Tagum City.

Duty Inquest Prosecutor, Attorney Grazielynne C. Corpuz received the information sheet under NPS docket Nr XI-03-INQ-21B-00076 for Violation of Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) or Kidnapping with Serious Illegal Detention; Violation of Section 10, Republic Act (RA) 7610 and Violation of Sections 4i, 4j, 4k and Section 9 of RA 9208 as amended by RA 10364 or Human Trafficking.

The respondents including two tribal datus, two teachers, and three adult lumad students were given 15 days to submit their counter affidavit to avail of preliminary investigation.

The case stemmed from complaints by six Ata Manobo parents of the rescued Lumad children who were herded in Talaingod town in Davao del Norte and brought to Cebu City without their consent.