The Department of Justice (DOJ) has released some details on the drug war cases it has reviewed, but human rights groups are not satisfied.
The DOJ’s analysis of about 50 cases in which drug suspects were killed in police operations revealed that most of those killed were in buy-bust operations, in which police say the suspects allegedly pulled out a gun and resisted.
But the service of the internal affairs of the PNP itself is not convinced in some cases that the suspects did fight back.
In 7 cases, the drug suspects tested negative for paraffin.
They did not fire a gun while the police did not show any documents or any report proving that the victims actually fought back.
Justice Undersecretary Adrian Sugay had earlier said that the police did not follow protocol in almost all the cases they examined in the second drug war review.
“We talk about the lack of, for instance, SOCO reports, the lack of any attempt on the part of police officers to determine the probable ownership or possible ownership of the firearms found allegedly in the possession of the subjects of the illegal drug operations, talk about the lack of paraffin tests, ballistics tests,” said Sugay.
DOJ releases drug war review report
The DOJ also found that gunshot wounds pierced the victims in nearly half of the cases, including a suspect in Cagayan who sustained 15 wounds.
Some suspects were also shot at close range.
In most cases, it has not yet reached the courts, and the usual punishment is suspension from the work of the police.
Only 8 cases resulted in the resignation of the police station involved.
The DOJ declined to name the police officers involved because of due process.
While some human rights groups welcomed the DOJ’s release of the information, they were not satisfied with it.
“The review of just 52 cases barely scratches the surface and is grossly insufficient and inconsistent with the government’s commitments under international law to provide effective review of cases involving alleged extralegal killings,” said Free Legal Assistance Group.