Senators seek an explanation regarding the reported possible release of former Calauan, Laguna mayor Antonio Sanchez. who was sentenced to seven terms of reclusion perpetua for the rape and murder of Eileen Sarmenta, along with the murder of Allan Gomez in 1993.
Senate President Vicente ‘Tito’ Sotto III and Sen. Franklin Drilon filed Senate resolutions No. 107 and No. 106, respectively, on Thursday, August 22, urging the necessary Senate committee to conduct a legislative inquiry on the implementation of Republic Act 10592.
R.A 10952 introduced amendments to provisions concerning time allowance for good conduct, which deducts the period of the sentence of offenders showing good behavior.
In their respective resolutions, Sotto and Drilon questioned the alleged good behavior of Sanchez, which allowed him to benefit from RA 10592, since the former mayor has been charged with possession of illegal drugs in 2006.
Drilon also noted that, in 2010, then New Bilibid Prison Director Gen. Oscar Calderon suspected that Sanchez was selling Php 1.5 million worth of shabu to his fellow prisoners.
“The primordial impetus for allowing early release of prisoners for good conduct allowances is to give premium reward to inmates who have shown good behavior, remorse and have signified rehabilitative behavior,” Drilon said in SR 106.
Drilon added that Sanchez should not qualify for time allowance of good conduct since he was convicted in 1999 for the double murder of Nelson and Rickson Peñalosa.
The lawmaker mentioned that Article 29 of RPC, as amended by RA 10592, states that the grant of credit for preventive imprisonment shall not apply to an accused who has been convicted previously twice or more times of any crime.
Sotto, meanwhile, said that the issue concerning Sanchez puts into the test the implementation of RA 10592.
“The purpose of the law may be good and favorable especially to those poor criminals who were found guilty because they cannot afford private lawyers who can competently represent them,” the senator said in SR 107.
“However there are some who do not deserve to enjoy the benefits of this law but will receive it just the same,” Sotto added.