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Teves employee seeks CHR's help vs. police over 'illegal' arrest, detention

A household employee of Negros Oriental Representative Arnolfo Teves Jr. on Monday filed a complaint with the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) against the police for the alleged illegal arrest and detention of her and her husband.

Hanna Mae Oray and her husband were among those arrested by elements of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) during a series of raids on Teves' houses in Negros Oriental last March 10.

"Hindi ko na raw po makikita ang mga anak ko, 60 years daw ako makukulong [they told me I will no longer see my kid, that I will be in jail for 60 years]," Oray tearfully said during a press conference held before she filed the complaint.

Oray, initially described as Teves' secretary, was accompanied by her lawyer, Atty. Toby Diokno, in filing the complaint.

The March 10 raid yielded several illegal firearms and ammunition, according to the police.

Teves is facing complaints in connection with the seized firearms as well as several killings that took place in Negros Oriental in 2019.

Suspects arrested in connection with the killing of Negros Oriental Roel Degamo have also named a certain "Cong Teves" as the man who ordered the hit on the governor.

Teves has denied involvement in the killing of Degamo but has since refused to return to the Philippines from an overseas trip.

In her complaint, Oray said heavily armed CIDG operatives forcefully entered their home last March 10 around 4 a.m. based on a photograph of search warrant on an operative's mobile phone.

She said the policemen confiscated their phones and accused her and her husband Leo of illegal possession of firearms even if the they were able to present her husband’s License To Own and Possess Firearm (LTOPF) and Permit to Carry (PTC) ID for the firearms he owns.

The CIDG operatives, Oray said, also asked her several times to admit that she was told by Teves to pay a "killer."

" May pinadala po silang papel, parang sinasabi po na may granada po ang bahay ko. Dapat pirmahan ko raw iyon. Hindi ko po pinimirmahan," she said.

"Kailangan ko daw sabihin ang mga nalalaman ko daw po kay Cong. Arnie, na aminin ko daw po na ako ang inutusan ni Cong. Arnie na magbayad sa mga killer daw po. Sabi ko po sa kanya wala po akong alam sa mga bagay na iyan, sir, nasa opisina lang po ako," Oray added.

(I was asked to sign a paper that said a grenade was found in our house, and that I should admit that Cong. Arnie asked me to pay the killers. I said I know nothing about that and I just do office work.)

GMA News Online has reached out to the CIDG and the Philippine National Police for comment, but they have yet to give one as of posting time.

Oray's counsel Diokno, meanwhile, said the fact that Oray was released after five days of detention due to lack of probable cause proves shows that they have a strong case against the CIDG.

"Tama po ang aming sinasabi na walang kasong dapat isinampa kay Hannah May. Mula pa nung pagka-aresto sa kanya, naninindigan kami na walang dahilan na siya ay i-detain dahil walang kaso," Diokno said.

(We were right all along. She should have never been detained because they have no case against her.

Oray's complaint cited Republic Act No. 7438 or the Act Defining Certain Rights of Person Arrested, Detained or Under Custodial Investigation as well as the Duties of the Arresting, Detaining and Investigating Officers and Providing Penalties for Violations Thereof,  as well as Article 3, Section 12 of the Philippine Constitution which states that: "any person under investigation for the commission of an offense shall have the right to be informed of his right to remain silent and to have competent and independent counsel preferably of his own choice” and that “if the person cannot afford the services of counsel, he must be provided with one" and "these rights cannot be waived except in writing and in the presence of counsel."

The same section of the 1987 Charter provides that "no torture, force, violence, threat, intimidation, or any other means which vitiate the free will shall be used against him" and that "secret detention places, solitary, incommunicado, or other similar forms of detention are prohibited." —KBK, GMA Integrated News