The Palawan Provincial Prosecutor’s Office urged victims of imprisonment or detention and victims of violent crimes to apply for the compensation program mandated thru Republic Act 7309.
Provincial Fiscal Alen Ross Rodriguez said the law was created in 1992 but it is only now that the government is intensifying information and education campaign about it. He explained that any person who was unjustly accused, convicted, and imprisoned but subsequently acquitted may file claims for compensation.
He, however, clarified that this case will not apply to an accused who is acquitted due to insufficient evidence.
“Magkaiba ‘yun, ‘yung walang kasalanan at saka yung hindi lang na-prove beyond reasonable doubt [guilt], ang magka-qualify lang yung unjustly detained,” Rodriguez said.
The law will also apply to victims of unjust detention and released without being charged, victims of arbitrary or illegal detention, and any victims of violent crimes like rape.
Rodriguez said that the application for claims may be submitted within six months after being released or from the date the victims suffered damages or injury. In case of death or incapacity of the victim, his/her heirs may file the claim, he explained.
He said there are victims in Palawan who have availed the program and claims were already granted.
Application for claim of compensation may be filed before the City or Provincial Prosecutor’s office and will be reviewed before its endorsement to Regional Prosecutor Ernesto Mendoza and subsequently to the Department of Justice’ Board of Claims Office in Ermita, Manila. The Board shall resolve the claim and corresponding amount within 30 working days after filing the application.