By: Jennifer P. Rendon
AROUND 11 percent of heinous crimes convicts in Western Visayas who were released by virtue of the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) Law have turned themselves in to different police stations all over the region.
Police Lieutenant Colonel Joem Malong, Police Regional Office 6 (PRO-6) spokesperson, said 18 GCTA-freed convicts had surrendered as of 8 a.m. of Sept. 12, 2019.
Malong noted that two of the 18 convicts are listed in other regions but they yielded in Western Visayas.
“Technically, there are 16 of the 149 convicts who were released under the GCTA in Western Visayas that voluntarily submitted themselves,” Malong said.
The 149 convicts were freed by GCTA Law since January 2013.
Most of them are in Negros Occidental (57), Iloilo province (29), Bacolod City (21), Aklan (15), Capiz (13), and Iloilo City and Antique with 7 each.
Seven were convicted of murder, four for rape, and two for homicide. Others imprisoned for robbery with homicide; frustrated homicide; robbery, murder and frustrated murder; illegal possession of firearms and ammunition and robbery with homicide; illegal possession of firearms and ammunition, robbery with homicide, and evasion of service of sentence.
Iloilo Police Provincial Office (IPPO) has accounted for nine convicts.
But in its own records, IPPO said 14 GCTA convicts already surrendered under their jurisdiction.
Thirteen of these convicts were presented in a press conference yesterday morning at the IPPO headquarters in Camp Sumagaysay, Sta. Barbara, Iloilo.
On the other hand, Negros Occidental have five while Aklan has two convicts and Iloilo City and Aklan have one each.
Malong said the remaining convicts have until Sept. 19 to surrender.
After the 15-day deadline, they would be considered as fugitives of the law.
“Our tracker teams in every police station are ready to hunt them down,” she said.
Malong said only the IPPO has initiated Tokhang operations against GCTA convicts.
Others opted to wait for these convicts to appear at the police stations nearest them.
Oplan Tokhang is derived from “Toktok-Hangyo” meaning “knock and plead (make a polite request to surrender or stop using drugs).”
Police said more convicts will yield as the deadline nears.