Baguio City

CA orders AFP, PNP to present missing Cordillera activists

Sherwin de Vera

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CA orders AFP, PNP to present missing Cordillera activists

SEARCH. Activists rally as families of Cordillera activists Dexter Capuyan and Gene Roz Jamil De Jesus go to a camp to look for the two missing indigenous peoples' rights advocates in Tarlac.

Sherwin De Vera/Rappler

The Court of Appeals directs AFP and PNP officials to come to court with the two missing activists on July 14

BAGUIO, Philippines – The 13th Division of the Court of Appeals (CA) has ordered the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police (PNP) to present missing Cordillera indigenous peoples rights activists Dexter Capuyan and Gene Roz Jamil De Jesus. 

In a July 10 resolution, the CA found the petition for a writ of habeas corpus filed by relatives of the two University of the Philippines (UP) alumni to be “sufficient in form and substance.”

Capuyan’s mother and daughter and De Jesus’ sister filed the petition on July 5 against AFP chief of staff Lieutenant General Andres Centino, PNP chief General Benjamin Acorda, PNP-Rizal provincial director Colonel Dominic Baccay, and Criminal Investigation and Detection Group chief Brigadier General Romeo Caramat. 

Human rights groups alleged that armed men, who introduced themselves as CIDG personnel, snatched Capuyan and De Jesus at Golden City Subdivision in Taytay, Rizal, on the evening of April 28. 

The appellate court directed the respondents “to appear before this Court and produce and bring the bodies and persons” of the two missing indigenous peoples’ rights advocates on Friday, July 14. 

The CA also told them to “show cause why the subject persons should remain in their custody.” 

The court’s decision gave the De Jesus family hope “that everything would be clearer, and the end of their suffering is nearing.” 

“When we were informed that the Court of Appeals granted the Writ of Habeas Corpus for Bazoo (De Jesus) and Dexter, my first thought was that we are halfway towards our journey. We see hope,” said De Jesus’ mother, Mercedita on Thursday, July 13. 

She and her husband are overseas workers in Italy. 

“I asked for a copy of the court order, and I cried when we read the content. I started hoping again that they would surface the two of them alive,” she said. –

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