Pemberton to be detained at Bilibid
The Olongapo Regional Trial Court Branch 74 has ordered that Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton be detained at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) while the Philippines and the US government are still negotiating for his detention.
In its ruling, the court said the agreement entered into by the Philippine government and the US government on Pemberton’s detention is ambiguous.
“It failed to state the specific facility where the accused will serve his sentence and the particular Philippine authority, government agency which will have supervision over the confinement of Pemberton while he is serving sentence,” the court said.
“If the confinement must be by Philippine authorities as provided in the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), then he should be confined at the New Bilibid Prison or in the facilities where national prisoners are detained,” the court said, since Pemberton is considered a national prisoner. A national prisoner is an inmate sentenced to more than three years to one day of imprisonment.
Following the court’s ruling, the Department of Justice (DOJ) in a statement said Pemberton will be turned over to the Philippine National Police (PNP) and escorted to Camp Aguinaldo where he was temporarily detained.
“He shall be received by personnel of the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) and immediately detained there until his appeal is decided with finality by our courts,” the DOJ said.
“It is possible that Lance Corporal Pemberton may be transferred to another detention facility at some point, as provided under the VFA between the governments of the Philippines and US. In any case, his detention shall at all times be carried out within Philippine territory under guard by and in line with existing regulations of the BuCor,” the DOJ said.
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