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Woman files raps vs. Duterte supporters over ‘threats’

A human rights defender and climate justice advocate on Monday filed a complaint with the Department of Justice (DOJ) against supporters of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.

Renee Julienne Karunungan said she was filing the complaints against Duterte's supporters who threatened her on her Facebook account.

According to Karunungan, Duterte's supporters flooded her inbox with threatening messages after she posted a meme that said "Duterte is a lazy choice." She said the threats included "wishes" that she would die or get raped, or that her family gets "massacred."

She said said actively campaigning against Duterte because of his human rights record.

Karunungan also said online threats of murder, rape, serious physical injuries are "no longer laughing matter," and constitute crimes under the Revised Penal Code, Cybercrime Law and Omnibus Election Code.

"These criminal behavior needs to stop. For this reason, I have decided to file criminal cases against those who have sent me threats," she said in filing her grave threat complaint.

"My rights offline are the same as my rights online. There is a difference between freedom of speech and speech that incites violence. It is time that people know that differenfce," she added.

Karunungan appealed to the public not to resort to violence especially on the basis of political views. "This kind of behavior is unacceptable and is a threat to our democracy and violates our basic rights," she said.

Apart from the complaints with the DOJ, Karunungan said she also filed with the Commission on Elections separate election offenses against those behind the threats on her.

Her lawyer said those behind the threats face penalties of imprisonment ranging from six months and six years, according to her lawyer. —ALG/KBK, GMA News