PRESIDENTIAL Spokesperson Salvador Panelo belied the accusations of “dirty work” in the arrest of former Bayan Muna Representative Satur Ocampo and 17 others in Davao del Norte.
Ocampo and the others detained with him on Saturday were released from detention after posting bail.
Panelo noted that the case of Ocampo and the others underwent due process, therefore, the claim that security forces used “dirty work” against members of the rescue team is “baseless.”
“Dinemanda sila ng trafficking and I think that was downgraded to exploitation and discrimination under Republic Act 7610, meaning to say nagkaroon ng inquest and then nakita ng piskal na ‘di pa pwede ‘yung trafficking and kidnapping,” Panelo said.
“Madaling sabi... nakita nung judge na may probable cause, so ibig sabihin, binibigyan sila ng due process, in fact binigyan sila ng bail. So palagay ko, masyadong baseless ‘yung akusasyon nila sa gobyerno,” he added.
Ocampo and other members of their group were arrested on charges of human trafficking, kidnapping, and failure to return a minor.
The group, which also includes ACT Teachers partylist Rep. France Castro, was on a “solidarity mission” to rescue children from a lumad school that were reportedly padlocked by the paramilitary group Alamara.
Panelo reiterated his reminder to the camp of Ocampo and the others to let the legal process “run its course.”