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Ina Alleco R. Silvero filed this report with Bulatlat and one of the latest cases of an illegal abduction by the AFP and PNP Jimmylisa Badayos. The AFP has accused her of being a member of the New People’s Army and also has planted evidence on her by telling the media she had a handgun on her person. Badyos counters that claim by the fact that her handbag (which supposidly is where the .38 handgun came from) is checked by security guards in order for her to get in and out of her work. Calixto Vistal, who was also abducted along with Badayos is still missing:
The Karapatan human rights organization in Central Visayas has sounded the appeal for the immediate release of a daughter of a disappeared activist and her co-worker in Cebu.
According to a report, Jimmylisa Badayos, 36 years old and single, and Calixto Vistal, 38 years old were abduct, Jimmylisa Badayosed as they were leaving the premises of EuroForest Products Industries, Inc in Mandaue City, Cebu last October 5. The two are employees of the said company.
According to a report, combined police and military elements of the City Intelligence Branch-Philippine National Police-Cebu City Police Office (CIB-CCPO) led by Chief Inspector Romeo Santander, and the Military Intelligence Group (MIG) under the Armed Forces of the Philippines Central Command (CentCom) were behind the abduction.
At about 6 p.m. on October 5, Badayos and Vistal had just finished their shift at the factory and were at the gate of the company when they were seized by armed men in civilian clothes. Witnesses said the two victims struggled and called for help as they were forced inside a waiting vehicle. The entire time, the armed men warned bystanders, who consequently became witnesses, against interfering because they said they are with the government.
The abductors then drove the two victims to Camp Sotero Cabahug in Cebu City, where they were taken to the office of PNP-City Intelligence Branch led by Supt. Romeo Santader. The two learned that their abductors are elements of the MIG and the CIB-CCPO.
After her arrest, Badayos has since been visited by members of the human rights group Karapatan. She said that as she was being forced into the vehicle, she struggled against her abductors, one of whom grabbed her face and squeezed so hard that his hands left marks around her mouth and cheeks. Badayos said she was pulling her shoulder bag toward her and was surprised when she saw one of the men put a a heavy, metallic object inside it. One of the men pushed her hand away and took her bag.
Badayos said she and Vistal were interrogated separately by officers of the MIG and CIB. They were accused of being leaders of the New People’s Army (NPA). The interrogation lasted up to 11 p.m.. While still at the CIB, Badayos learned that a news crew from the GMA7 network arrived. As she peeked through the door, she saw her interrogator, Major Mendroza, her other abductors and CIB police officers presented her shoulder bag and a hand gun before the media.
Karapatan spokesman Dennis Michael Abarientos said the police violated the rights of Badayos and Vistal when they arrested the two without a warrant and without telling them why they were being arrested.
“It was an abduction -– they were grabbed and then forced inside a van. It was the sort of the thing that happened during martial law,” he said.
In statements to the media, City Intelligence Branch (CIB) Chief Romeo Santander argued that they obeyed proper procedures when they arrested the two. He also claimed that they were justified in arresting them.
The official, however, said the Cebu police will still have to determine what cases will be filed against Badayos and Vistal. The two, he said, will be turned over to the Dumaguete police where the warrant was served.
Karapatan has called for the immediate formation of an independent fact-finding and investigation team composed of representatives from human rights groups, the church, local government, and the Commission on Human Rights to look into the abduction and illegal arrest and detention of the two victims. It also said that the military should be compelled to stop the labeling and targeting of human rights defenders as “members of front organizations of the communists” and “enemies of the state.”