Chiz Escudero questioned the serving of warrants on Parojinogs before the crack of dawn

One of the two senators questioning the controversial serving of search warrants on the Parojinogs' homes at dawn is Senator Francis Escudero.

He said under the rules of the court and of the Philippine National Police (PNP) manual, serving of search warrants must be done during day time and wonders whether "overpowering forces" were used against the suspects.

"These will all be short-lived. I hope our police officers will not have short memories. Yung dalawampung taon nga ni Marcos, natapos din eh," Escudero said in a television interview. "In fact, there is a separate provision on searches and seizure alone; to put a premium on how important this issue or this thing is," he added.

"The term of the incumbent administration is only for six years, so whatever it is they’re enjoying right now, if they violate any of our existing laws, they would have to face it anyway after six years, in this case after five years. So, huwag sila masyadong mag-isip na protektado sila habambuhay," he said.

He cited Article III, Section of the 1987 Constitution where it is stated that "the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature and for any purpose shall be inviolable."

The ruling also said, "no search warrant or warrant of arrest shall be issued except upon probable cause to be determined personally by the judge after examination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized."

He pointed out that President Rodrigo Duterte has made the PNP more 'emboldened' as far as the war on drugs is concerned. However, the senator also claimed that it is still to early to conclude and possible abuse the Ozamis City police did.

"Hindi pa ako nakahandang sabihin ‘yon pero siguro dapat magpaliwanag pa at mag-esplika pa ang kapulisan kung ano nga ba ang nangyari, bakit nagkaganon?" Escudero stated.

"Hindi naman pwedeng we were met by a valley of fire and everyone is killed and nobody is killed in our side. They should I think be more detailed in their explanation in the next couple of hours or days," he added.

Aside from Escudero, Sen. Kiko Pangilinan questioned the operation of the warrant serving police officers, calling it 'unrealistic'.

"Serving warrants of arrest past 2 a.m., disabling the CCTVs prior to entering the premises, all 15 suspected drug lords at the scene of the crime and their 'armed to the teeth' bodyguards are killed, no injuries or casualties on the side of the PNP. Hindi makatotohanan. Puwedeng gawin ito kaninuman," Pangilinan said.

Meanwhile, Senator Panfilo Lacson, who was once a law enforcer, saw nothing irregular in the timing of the raid.

"When I was still in the law enforcement service, talagang we’d rather operate pag madaling araw para element of surprise yun eh," Lacson, former PNP chief, said.

"Especially kung ang information armed group ang ire-raid mo, teka muna, susugod ba ako ng araw? Kitang-kita naman ako...At this point sabi ko nga wala akong nakitang irregular," he added.

Misamis Occidental PPO chief Senior Superintendent Jaysen de Guzman confirmed the reports wherein police officers were greeted by gunfires coming from the Parojinogs' compound as they try to enter the premises.

Ozamiz City police Chief Inspector Jovie Espenido said in a press conference the reason why the raid was conducted at a very early time of the day. This is to avoid or at least minimize the risks of collateral damages, fearing that the children or bystanders might be used as human shields.

Source: UpdatePh, GMA