Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) director general Nicanor Faeldon talks about good conduct time allowance (GCTA) of former Calauan mayor Antonio Sanchez

Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) director general Nicanor Faeldon on Wednesday denied the claim of former Calauan mayor Antonio Sanchez’ family that the bureau had already notified them of the latter’s impending release based on his good conduct time allowance (GCTA) but withdrew it due to public pressure.

Speaking to reporters during his visit at the Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm (IPPF), Faeldon instead accused the family of “bullying” him to have Sanchez released.

“I would like to comment on the family. Noong lumabas ‘yong balita, I think that was August 20, nagulat ako doon sa aking quarter noong pinuntahan ako ng staff ko. Sinabi na ‘nandiyan ang asawa at mga anak ni Sanchez. Sabi ko bukas na lang kapag office hours para magpahinga muna ako kasi gabi na ito. Bumalik ‘yong staff ko, ang sabi hindi raw aalis kapag hindi ko hinarap. Sabi ko, si Sanchez nga ito kasi mukhang may feeling of entitlement kaagad,” Faeldon said.

Faeldon said he was shocked when the family demanded him to answer if Sanchez will be released.

“That same day I announced it also in the media that he is not qualified dahil marami na kaming nakita. Sabi ko, at first glance on his paper, he has committed a lot of infractions while in jail, and those are reasons for disqualification on the granting of GCTA. August 20 pa lang nasabi ko na, even before they met me,” he said.

Faeldon also brushed aside reports that BuCor is set to release the convicted murderers in the celebrated Chiong sisters rape slay case in line with the GTCA law. He said that BuCor has suspended all their individual evaluation of detainees subject to GCTA “until all the procedural issues have been ironed out.”

“Let me clarify that, suspended lahat. All the evaluations are temporarily suspended until all these procedural issues have been ironed out,” he said, adding they will not publicly discuss specific names and cases.

BuCor legal division chief Atty. Fredric Anthony Santos, who was accompanying Faeldon, also denied they have issued any notification to the Sanchez family of the detained convict’s release.

Santos said the Sanchez family misinterpreted the convict’s qualification on the list of persons deprived of liberty (PDL) whose GCTAs were ordered recomputed on August 9 by the Supreme Court (SC) after Republic Act 10592 became retroactive.

He said when they received the SC decision, they generated a list of the PDL who have served 40 years and above and it was only on this inventory where Sanchez was included.

“Baka ‘yon ‘yong sinasabi niya. It just so happened na nandoon siya sa list. List lang ‘yon kasi hindi naman maka-qualify ‘yon kapag pinasok mo sa computer, mag-ge-generate talaga ‘yong computer nang list ng 40 years and above pero after that list, nire-review pa ‘yon,” he said.

He said that after verification, the convicted mayor was evaluated not eligible for release.

“Doon lang siya nag-qualify sa list. After reviewing, hindi siya dapat i-release. Actually, hindi na tayo pupunta doon sa violation, doon lang sa GCTA niya at actual time served. Hindi siya qualified because he committed a heinous crime,” Santos added.

Santos added that GCTAs are provided even to inmates who were convicted because of the heinous crimes they committed as provided under Article 97 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC).

Under the article, any prisoner in any penal institution that shall show sustained good behavior shall be entitled to GCTA deductions from the period of his sentence.

“Before the pronouncements of higher authorities, binibigyan namin ng GCTAs ang heinous crime as provided in Article 97 of the Revised Penal Code, ang naging problema lang ‘yong Article 29, ang nakalagay doon recidivists, habitual, escapees, are excluded on this Act. Ang sabi ng higher authorities excluded ‘yan, susunod kami,” he said.