Benguet vlogger pleads guilty to violating ‘Bawal Bastos’ law

Frank Cimatu

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Benguet vlogger pleads guilty to violating ‘Bawal Bastos’ law
Presiding Judge Mylene May Adube-Cabuag orders Renan Padawi to pay a fine of ₱100,000, and ₱50,000 as civil liability to Mia Magdalena Fokno, administrator of Baguio Chronicle’s Facebook page

BAGUIO CITY, Philippines – A popular vlogger has pleaded guilty to violating the Safe Spaces Act – the first landmark case in Northern Luzon in relation to what is also known as the “Bawal Bastos” law.

Renan Padawi, who goes by the social media handle Jackfloyd Sawyer, pleaded guilty while being re-arraigned by Presiding Judge Mylene May Adube-Cabuag in La Trinidad, Benguet, on February 1.

Padawi was charged last September 2022 for violation of Republic Act No. 11313 or the Safe Spaces Act (Bawal Bastos Act), based on a case filed by Mia Magdalena Fokno, administrator of Baguio Chronicle’s Facebook page. 

Padawi was found guilty beyond reasonable doubt for violating Section 12, Article II, of RA 11313. Adube-Cabuag ordered Padawi to pay a fine of ₱100,000, and ₱50,000 to Fokno as civil liability.

Padawi gained a following on Facebook and YouTube for ridiculing people about issues on the Igorot.

Sometimes he is funny and crass but in this particular case, he was just menacing.

The complaint stemmed from Padawi’s reaction to Fokno’s questioning of the absence of Ferdinand President Marcos Jr. in rescue operations of the Abra earthquake in July 2022. (READ: FAST FACTS: How does the Safe Spaces Act protect you?)

In his Facebook post defending his idol, which was viewed more than 73,000 times and shared 400 times before it was deleted, gravely threatened Fokno and even issued sexual innuendos to her. 

“I feel unsafe online and in the real world. I have been suffering sleepless nights, public ridicule, embarrassment, anguish, and [my] freedom of movement [has been restrained] because I fear for my safety,” Fokno said in her affidavit. 

In a statement, Fokno had explained why she decided to pursue the case “even if I was told by some that it was trivial and that I should withdraw.”

“They said that he had many fans and trolls who would support him. But I also knew that what he did was wrong and that this was the first case of its kind in the community.  Even if I was told that he was willing to settle, I did not. I had to see this through for all victims of sexual harassment, online or otherwise,” she said.

“I take it to heart that I was thrust into this role on behalf of Cordilleran women who were shamed into not bringing out their cases, stifled by tradition and supposed honor, and silenced throughout their lives by their partners or loved ones or friends. I came out so that others could find their voice,” Fokno added. – Rappler.com

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