Roque said no less than Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff General Carlito Galvez Jr. gave the date.
“Sir, accordingly this coming Wednesday, sir,” Roque quoted the AFP chief as saying when he asked when Palparan would be committed to the NBP.
Palparan, a retired Army major general, was being held at a detention cell in the Philippine Army headquarters in Fort Bonifacio in Taguig City.
Palparan was recently convicted for kidnapping and serious illegal detention over the disappearance in 2006 of University of the Philippines students Karen Empeño and Sherlyn Cadapan.
But even before his conviction, Palparan had become notorious to human rights groups for his heavy-handed anti-insurgency campaigns in Mindoro, Romblon, the Eastern Visayas, and Central Luzon.
Human rights abuses, indiscriminate killings, and other extrajudicial crimes were attributed to the campaign of Palparan’s 8th Infantry Division in Eastern Visayas.
The Arroyo-appointed Melo Commission said there was no direct evidence linking the then general to hundreds of killings, but conceded that there was evidence that Palparan tolerated and even encouraged the killings.
Similarly, the International Peasant Solidarity Mission and the Commission of Human Rights found evidence of military involvement in several cases of human rights violations in areas where Palparan was in charge.
Palparan was, however, cleared of charges and lived free until December 20, 2011, when a warrant for his arrest was issued following the disappearance of Cadapan and Empeño.
After almost three years in hiding, he was arrested in Manila on August 12, 2014.
Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said the Malolos regional trial court junked the motion of Palparan to stop his commitment to the New Bilibid Prisons.
Guevarra said the court cited SC-OCA Circular No.163-2013 which directs all trial court judges to cause the immediate transfer of convicted persons to the NBP, despite the detainee’s pending motion for reconsideration or an appeal.
“I have personally discussed the matter with AFP chief (Carlito) Galvez (Jr.) who has assured me that the AFP custodial center will immediately comply, without prejudice to the resolution of any further judicial review,” the DoJ chief said.
With Hector Lawas