24 June 2017

News Story: Cops, soldiers accused of illegal search, looting in Marawi

By Edu Punay

MANILA, Philippines - The Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) chapter in Lanao del Sur has slammed the military and police units implementing martial law in Marawi City for alleged illegal searches and seizure and looting of civilian properties in the war-torn city.

In a three-page statement submitted to the Supreme Court by petitioners against President Duterte’s martial law proclamation in Mindanao, the IBP chapter accused the military and the police of committing crimes while implementing martial law and fighting Maute terrorists.

Because of this, the IBP chapter called on martial law administrator Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana to immediately stop searches and seizures without court warrants.

While the group said that they support the declaration of martial law in Mindanao, it stressed that it “has not closed its eyes on any forms of abuses committed in the implementation thereof.”

The chapter warned of taking legal actions should the security forces fail to act on this issue.

The local lawyers’ group expressed “severe outrage and condemnation over illegal searches and seizures in Marawi City by military men, police and other law enforcement agencies which result in rampant loss and deprivation of properties and possessions of innocent civilians.”

Read the full story at PhilStar