Palparan is ‘home,’ now in Army HQ detention cell
MANILA, Philippines – Retired Army Major General Jovito Palparan Jr is home. Onboard a maroon Mitsubishi van, a smiling Palparan arrived at the Philippine Army headquarters in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City, at 2:45 pm on Monday, September 15, following a court order to move him from the Bulacan Provincial Jail.
His detention cell inside the Army Custodial Center is small – 2.8 meters by 4.3 meters – with only a bed and an electric fan. He will have to share the toilet with other detainees in the compound, where Senator Antonio Trillanes IV and fellow Magdalo soldiers were detained before President Gloria Arroyo gave them amnesty in their rebellion case.
But Palparan, who served as commander of the 7th Infantry Division, will be secured by his former colleagues in the military.
Palparan is accused of masterminding the abduction of 2 University of the Philippines (UP) students in Bulacan in June 2006. The Malolos regional trial court ordered his arrest in 2009 but Palparan evaded arrest until soldiers captured him in August 2014.
Human rights activists, who have tagged the general as "The Butcher" because of his alleged human rights violations, protested the court decision.
"The military moved heaven and earth for this, as what they have done to protect their own and justify the numerous human rights violations committed," Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay said.
Palparan earlier asked the court to transfer him either to the Philippine Army Custodial Center or at the detention center of the Intelligence Agency of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (ISAFP) in Camp Aguinaldo over alleged threats to his life.
This came after the Bulacan court rejected his petition to remain in the custody of the National Bureau of of Investigation.
The military top brass is happy.
"We are happy to hear that Major General Palparan's request has been granted by the court. We look forward to his safety while undergoing trial," said military chief General Gregorio Catapang Jr.
Army chief Lieutenant General Hernando Iriberri vowed they will "abide by the provisions of the transfer as stipulated by the court order and he will be presented to the court when needed."
Palparan's counsel has coordinated with the Army as early as two weeks ago for the possible transfer, according to Army spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Noel Detoyato.
Palparan will join in the custodial center his co-accused in the abduction of the 2 UP students – Army Colonel Felipe Anotado Jr and Master Sergeant Edgar Osorio.
Anotado himself has been staying for 3 years in the room adjacent to Palparan's new cell. – Rappler.com