PH police defends itself from critics, says Imelda Marcos’ age a factor in her arrest

Imelda Marcos PHOTO: Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News
Imelda Marcos PHOTO: Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

Nope, not too fast.

Today, the chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Oscar Albayalde said that they cannot arrest former First Lady and Ilocos Norte Representative Imelda Marcos yet because her arrest warrant has not been served.

He also said that Imelda’s age must be considered before arresting her.

The PNP has been criticized by some netizens for failing to arrest Imelda, who was found guilty of graft last week.

People say that this stands in stark contrast to how the PNP treated Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, one of President Rodrigo Duterte’s fiercest critics.

The public perceived that the PNP was hyper-vigilant during the days leading up to Trillanes’ arrest, with some of its members and the army even camping outside of the Senate building before an arrest warrant has been issued against the senator.

While Duterte obviously hates Trillanes, he has always been vocal about his admiration for the Marcoses.

In fact, in August this year, he said he would gladly step down from power if Bongbong Marcos, Imelda’s son, would become his successor.

Albayalde explained that there’s no rush for the PNP to do something because Imelda is old and thereby not a threat.

The Philippine Daily Inquirer reported Albayalde saying: “I don’t want to say she’s old, she might get mad at us, but she’s elderly. We have to take into consideration her age.”

He added: “In any arrest of anybody for that matter, that has to be taken into consideration, the health, the age [of the person to be arrested].”

He said that once a warrant of arrest is out, the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) will be in charge of nabbing Imelda.

“First of all, as of this time, there’s nothing out yet. We haven’t even done any advanced coordination. We don’t want to be [thinking] in advance or appear as if we’re speculating that the decision (warrant of arrest) is going to come out soon,” he told GMA News.

“[But] we heard the decision will be out today. If the warrant of arrest will be out, it will be the CIDG [who will be in charge of it]. I’ve already told the director of the CIDG to lead if we are the ones who will be asked to arrest her,” he said.

On Friday, Imelda was found guilty of seven counts of violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act by the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division.

She was sentenced to a minimum of six years and one month to a maximum of 11 years in prison. She was also disqualified for life from holding public office.

Her case, however, is bailable.

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