BuCor insider to bare 'prison release for sale' at Senate probe: Gordon


Posted at Sep 05 2019 04:23 PM

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MANILA - A Bureau of Corrections insider is set to appear at a Senate inquiry and is expected to bare the alleged sale of early release for prisoners based on good conduct credits, Sen. Richard Gordon said Thursday.

The insider, a witness of Senate President Vicente Sotto III, has knowledge of how prisoners interact with BuCor officials, said Gordon.

"He would shed light, in a more clear way as to how these things are being done. Maybe, we can see the corruption. That's a possibility na nagkakaroon ng bayaraan d'yan, 'cash-unduan' (that money is being exchanged there, a cash agreement)," he told ANC.

The good conduct time allowance (GCTA) law, which has led to the release of some 2,000 heinous crime convicts since 2013, recently came under fire following reports that it could benefit Antonio Sanchez, a former mayor of Calauan, Laguna convicted for the 1993 rape-slay of college student Eileen Sarmenta and killing of her companion Allan Gomez.
"Overt signs" of corruption in the BuCor include some prisoners' use of forbidden cellphones and recent photos of Sanchez wearing a belt, a banned item that can be used for strangling other inmates, Gordon said.

"These are not petty stuff. This is all part of the manual that shows they are prohibited," said the chairperson of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee.     

"Some people are being influenced by money and they can do that there."

President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday fired BuCor Director Nicanor Faeldon following his admission that he issued in August a memorandum recommending Sanchez's early release due to supposed good conduct, which he said he later stopped.

Duterte has also ordered convicts freed under the GCTA law to surrender to authorities.

ANC, September 5, 2019