Criminals can’t escape justice: Bishops

Posted By: Chris On:

MANILA, Dec. 15, 2010—A Catholic bishop warned offenders that they cannot escape justice even if they belong to influential families.

Puerto Princesa Bishop Pedro Arigo made the statement Wednesday following the release of a son of senator and six others accused of killing a family of three 19 years ago.

“The Supreme Court is not the last court. Anyway there is always a divine justice,” said Arigo who chairs the CBCP’s Commission on Prison Pastoral Care.

Marbel Bishop Dinualdo Gutierrez, for his part, called on the faithful to pray for both the victims and the court.

“We need to pray for the Supreme Court,” he said. “I was telling ordinary people here that is how our legal system works,” he said.

“I remember what (Brazil’s) Archbishop (Oscar) Romero said, that human justice is like a snake. It only bites those without shoes. We need reforms because, as they say, our justice system only affects the poor,” Arigo also said.

The SC yesterday acquitted Hubert Webb and six other accused in the rape and murder of then 19-year old Carmela Vizconde, and the killing of her mother Estrellita and seven-year-old sister Jennifer in their Parañaque house in June 1991.

In a vote of 7-4, the High Court cited the failure of the prosecution to prove their guilt beyond reasonable doubt and the unreliability of the testimony of the prosecution’s star witness as the main reasons for junking the case.

The bishops, then, called on the faithful to help Lauro Vizconde recover from the devastating effects of the SC ruling.

They added that prayers will be utterly welcomed as it would give Vizconde the continued strength to pursue justice for his family. (CBCPNews)

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