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Bring killers of Chinese man to justice, Locsin urges PNP

MANILA, Philippines — Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. on Tuesday urged the Philippine National Police to quickly resolve the killing of a Chinese national in Las Piñas City last week, warning that Filipinos in China might suffer the consequences if the Philippine government failed to bring the killers to justice.

Local police said Yang Kang, a 27-year-old Chinese citizen who was working here, was handcuffed by another Chinese before he fell to his death from the sixth floor of a building in Las Piñas City on Friday.

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China has demanded a quick resolution of Yang’s death.

“One hundred percent agree with China on this one. We go down this road of letting Chinese nationals be hurt, our people in China will pay,” Locsin tweeted on Tuesday.

It did not matter if the crime involved only Chinese nationals, added Locsin, who insisted that “failure to bring the killer to justice” was a sign of a failed state.

“When a foreign national is killed on our soil, we are obliged to allow the foreign national’s state to send its own investigators to solve the crime we seem unable to. That is international practice,” he said.

PNP disagrees

The PNP disagreed.

Gen. Oscar Albayalde, the PNP chief, said Chinese investigators were welcome but could only act as observers.

“Coordination is also allowed, especially in exchange of information,” Albayalde said in a text message to the Inquirer.

Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac, spokesperson for the PNP, also said Chinese investigators may come, but not work as part of the probe team.

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“Insofar as our laws are concerned, only the PNP and [the National Bureau of Investigation] have those powers and functions to conduct criminal investigation [in the Philippines],” Banac said.

Las Piñas police earlier said Yang could have been trying to escape from captivity when he slipped and fell from the sixth floor of the building in Pamplona Dos village.

Yang, the local police said, may have owed money to a compatriot who detained him to force him to pay up.

There have been reports, however, that many workers in Philippine offshore gaming operators (Pogo) are brought over by Chinese illegal recruiters whose Chinese partners here hold the workers like slaves, confiscating their passports and restricting their movements.

‘Modern slavery’

China appeared to be aware of it, calling it “modern slavery” in its complaint about Pogo operators that it said undermined its crackdown on cross-border gambling.

The Chinese Embassy in Manila issued the statement after Malacañang announced that President Duterte had decided to raise the Philippines’ 2016 arbitral victory over China in the two countries’ territorial dispute in the South China Sea to Chinese President Xi Jinping during his visit to Beijing later this month.

It said Chinese citizens’ rights were being violated and dozens were kidnapped, tortured and physically abused by local employers who confiscated their passports.

The statement did not identify the nationality of the local employers. —With reports from Christia Ramos and the wires

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TAGS: dead Chinese, PNP, Teodoro Locsin Jr., Yang kang
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