Massacre ‘brains’ welcome at Quezon City jail

PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — ALTHOUGH the Quezon City Jail is congested, the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology will accommodate Datu Unsay Mayor Andal Ampatuan, Jr. in the QCJ once the court favors a motion to transfer him there.

According to BJMP Public Information Officer, Insp. Roberto Gotico, there is still room for Ampatuan at the QCJ where he will be treated as a regular detainee.

The principal suspect in the Maguindanao Massacre which left 57 innocent people dead has been reported enjoying preferential treatment at the National Bureau of Investigation detention cell.

Lawyer Harry Roque has pushed for the transfer of Ampatuan to the QCJ where he will be mixed with other ordinary inmates.

More than 2,000 inmates are detained at the QCJ which is only designed for some 800 prisoners. Relatives of the victims in the infamous November 23 carnage have also asked for Ampatuan’s transfer.

In a motion he filed with QC Judge Jocelyn Solis-Reyes, Roque cited preferential treatment the prime suspect is allegedly enjoying at his NBI cell.

Roque said like other ordinary criminals undergoing trial, it is proper for the Datu Unsay mayor to be held at a city jail.

However, prosecutors said that Ampatuan is much safer at the NBI facility and he should stay there while facing the massacre charges filed against him considering that he is a high- risk suspect.

Justice Secretary Agnes Devanadera rejected the proposal, saying the QC jail is too crowded, thus posing a huge security threat to Ampatuan Jr.

“He is a high risk prisoner. We want him to face trial unhurt,” Devanadera said.Interior Secretary Ronaldo V. Puno also opposed the transfer of Ampatuan Jr. to the QCJ for security reasons.