MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) denied ordering the release of convicted rapist and murderer Antonio Sanchez, contrary to the claim of the convict's family.
"I have been informed that BuCor chief Nicanor Faeldon denies having signed a release order for Sanchez. Likewise, no report on such matter has been received by the Department of Justice (DOJ)," Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said in a text message to reporters late Tuesday evening, August 27.
CNN Philippines reported Tuesday that Sanchez's son Allan claimed to be in possession of a release order from BuCor which supposedly set his father's release on August 20. Allan Sanchez claimed they were told on that date that the release has been put on hold. (READ: TIMELINE: The GCTA law and the controversy it has stirred)
Guevarra ordered the suspension of processing of early release for inmates pending the review of both DOJ and BuCor on the guidelines of the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) law.
The review was a result of a public backlash against the earlier announced release of Sanchez, who has served 25 years out of his maximum 40-year sentence. The retroactive GCTA law can slash in half an inmate's sentence on basis of a sustained good behavior.
Faeldon earlier said Sanchez may still stay inside Bilibid for "several years" more because of reported misdemeanors such as stashing drugs in his jail cell, and having prohibited luxuries like television and an airconditioning unit inside prison.
The issue has prompted resolutions from both chambers of Congress to review the law. – Rappler.com