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PNP discourages arrest of quarantine violators

The Philippine National Police (PNP) is now discouraging the arrest of quarantine violators as well as the filing of complaints against them as these are “counterproductive,” its spokesperson said on Monday.

This follows the death of at least two individuals after they were caught violating curfew by police officers or village watchmen.

In a press conference, PNP spokesperson Ildebrandi Usana said PNP chief Police General Debold Sinas has required cops not to file complaints or arrest quarantine violators.

“The Chief PNP required na huwag nang mang-aresto [o] magsampa ng kaso because it might be counterproductive also to our people,” Usana said.

(“The Chief PNP required not to arrest quarantine violators or file a complaint because it might be counterproductive to our people.”)

Usana also pointed out that these actions are also impractical for police officers who are designated at checkpoints, as they would then have to bring the quarantine violators to police stations.

When barangay or local government authorities bring quarantine violators to the police, Usana said, cops are instructed to just release them.

According to Usana, the police will enforce the health protocols with more compassion and will educate the public more about COVID-19 transmission in the country.

On April 7, Darren Peñaredondo died after allegedly being forced to do around 300 rounds of exercise as punishment for violating curfew.

On April 9, Ernanie Jimenez died after allegedly being beaten up by village watchmen in Calamba, Laguna. — BM, GMA News