Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo on Wednesday, dismissed claims of his alleged involvement in the impending release of convicted rapist and murderer, former Calauan mayor Antonio Sanchez, a former client of his.
When asked if he had a hand in the release of Sanchez, Panelo staunchly replied, “Definitely not. I have withdrawn as his counsel years ago.”
“He hoped that he would be free when the time comes,” Panelo said.
Panelo, who is now the legal counsel and spokesman of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, was among Sanchez’ defense lawyers in the 1993 rape-slay cases of University of the Philippines Los Baños students Eileen Sarmenta and Allan Gomez.
Sanchez was convicted on March 11, 1995, by Judge Harriet Demetriou, who said his crime was “a plot seemingly hatched in hell.”
However, according to Justice Sec. Menardo Guevarra, Sanchez is one of the thousands of prisoners in the New Bilibid Prison that qualified for a recomputation for good conduct time allowance under Republic Act 10592.
Guevarra added that in two months’ time, Sanchez may be enjoying his freedom.
RA 10592 amended the provisions in the Constitution that will allow the lessening of sentence for convicted prisoners or any convict who is in preventive imprisonment based on their good conduct inside the prison.