Friday, March 24, 2006

One month in Crame is too long

From the Office of Anakpawis Representative Crispin B. Beltran

Lisa C. Ito, Public Information Officer (+63)927.796.7006

Tel. # (+632) 426-9442 Email:

URL: http://


March 24, 2006

Will the Makati Court set Ka Bel Free?

One month in Crame is too long, illegally-jailed solon says

One month in illegal detention at Camp Crame is far too long, Anakpawis Congressman Crispin Beltran said today before a scheduled hearing this morning at the Makati Regional Trial Court (MRTC) Branch 137.

Beltran has been jailed in Crame for nearly a month now, after his illegal arrest by CIDG operatives last February 25 in San Jose del Monte, Bulacan.

Beltran expressed hopes that the Makati courts would issue a similar decision to that of the March 13 decision of the Municipal Trial Court of Quezon City Branch 43.

The QC Court ruled that Beltran's arrest was illegal, without basis and violative of his rights to parliamentary immunity from arrest. The Court approved a Motion for the immediate release of Beltran and issued a Release Order that same day. This Order, however, was snubbed by the Philippine National Police and the Department of Justice because two other rebellion cases are still lodged against him. Right after the March 13 hearing and Release Order, police escorts quickly hauled Beltran back into their custody at Camp Crame.

Beltran expressed hopes that today's MRTC hearing, under Judge Jenny Lind Aldecoa-Delorino of Branch 137, would also issue a favourable decision on a similar motion filed by Beltran's lawyers to release him.

"Any court decision that would work in favour of prolonging my illegal detention in Camp Crame will have a backlash on the Arroyo administration's standing in the international community", the four-time 'Most Outstanding Congressman' awardee and internationally-recognized labor leader said.

"My illegal arrest and continuing detention at Camp Crame will only confirm to the international human rights community the appalling height of political repression which Pres. Arroyo and her cohorts are resorting to in order to silence her critics," Beltran said.

Support letters for Beltran, condemning the Arroyo administration's illegal arrest and detention, have been pouring in from foreign organizations, individuals, and parliamentarians from over 20 countries worldwide every day.

Meanwhile, among fellow Filipinos, Beltran's continuing detention will also send the signal that the Arroyo government is no longer interested in respecting the calls of workers and government employees for a nationwide across-the-board wage hike, Dennis Maga, Spokesperson for the Free Ka Bel Movement, said.

Beltran is the proponent of House Bills 345 and 1064, aimin

g to legislate a P125 and P3,000 across-the-board wage hike for private and public sector workers, respectively. "His detention at Camp Crame has considerably delayed the Congressional lobbying efforts for the passage of these bills", Maga said. ###


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