Without charges, Parojinogs should already be released – Topacio


MANILA, Philippines – Ferdinand Topacio, lawyer of Ozamiz City Vice Mayor Nova Parojinog and her brother Reynaldo Parojinog Jr, questioned the siblings' continued detention on Tuesday, August 1.

Topacio said that the Parojinogs' detention, given that no charges have been filed against them yet, has exceeded all timeframes allowed by law.

"[It's]12,18, 36. Light, less grave, grave... Because that is a capital offense, 36 hours. But even 36 hours eh tapos na eh (are already over)," he said.

Topacio uses 6 am of Sunday, July 30, as the starting time of the siblings' detention, which means that they should have been released at 6 pm of Monday, July 31.

According to the lawyer, he has also not received a copy of the search warrant for the Parojinogs' home. Topacio earlier said they would question the warrant's validity and the narrative told by the police.

"They can be liable [for] delaying the delivery of detained persons," he said. "Ang first na order of the day (The first order of the day) is to ask the prosecutor to order the release of my clients for further proceedings."

The siblings were scheduled for inquest on Tuesday afternoon.

They had been arrested following a bloody encounter in the Parojinog residence in Ozamiz City on Sunday, which left their parents – Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog and his wife Susan – and 13 others dead. Police had tried to serve a search warrant, but said the Parojinogs' security personnel fired at them first. (READ: TIMELINE: Parojinog, from Duterte's narco list to a bloody raid)

Cops also recovered assorted firearms, ammunition, suspected illegal drugs, and drug paraphernalia. (READ: The Parojinogs and the tangled webs they wove)

The Commission on Human Rights is investigating the police operation "to determine if protocols were followed in the implementation of the search warrant and use of deadly force, among others." – Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.