Once again the Law of the Land is corrupted.
A man was found guilty of murder and sentenced to 12 years in prison. You would think, he would be in jail and feel sorry for himself, think of the heinous crime he committed and have the time to evaluate his life.
But it seems this prisoner was free to go out of prison anytime. He was being seen everywhere. His day was just like any other day like when he was a free man. He can be found in his office conducting business as usual.
It was only by a thorough investigative journalism by a news broadcasting channel that blew the whistle on this corruption of justice. Leviste as reported and tipped off by the news was found by National Bureau of Investigation at his office and taken back to prison.
You would think that would put a black mark on his record but apparently not because just over 4 years served of his 12 years prison term, Leviste waved a fond goodbye to his lackey at the New Bilibid prison. The holiday is over.
Ha bloody Ha. Alright for some.
It is very sad that no one in high ups could see anything wrong with this scenario. Leviste was given a unanimous decision for a parole.
I think it is time to evaluate whether Parole and Probation Administration (PPA) are doing their job properly? Are they value for money?
With this shenanigans, ordinary people would think that justice in the Philippines is dispersed in different ways. The Leviste, the Napoles and the rich and famous are treated like kings and queens whilst the poor are treated like the dregs of society or humanity.
Leviste might be old but it does not change the fact that he murdered someone in cold blood. Therefore he should be sent back to jail for at least 2 more years if not serve the full term.
As to the family of the murder victim. I hope Kim Henares will be looking into the family’s generosity of forgiveness; how much is the value and the going rate of forgiveness? Hope this will not be too taxing! LOL
Leviste freed; ‘VIP treatment’ hit
Four years, five months and one day. NIÑO JESUS ORBETA
An anticrime group on Friday denounced the release from prison of homicide convict Antonio Leviste and vowed to question the grant of parole to the former governor of Batangas province.
Leviste walked out of New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City at noon, a free man again after serving less than half of his 12-year sentence for killing his longtime aide, Rafael de las Alas, in 2007.
Accompanied by members of his family, Leviste, 73, received his release papers at 11:20 a.m., more than two weeks after the Parole and Probation Administration (PPA) granted his application for parole and those of 34 other prisoners.
After about 40 minutes, Leviste and his relatives left the prison compound. They were bound for Lipa City in Batangas.
Justice Secretary Leila de Lima confirmed the grant of parole to Leviste.
She said Leviste had complied with all the legal requirements for parole.
“I was also told that the family of the victim did not object and [said they had] forgiven Mr. Leviste,” De Lima said in a text message to reporters.
But Dante Jimenez, founding chair of the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC), condemned the grant of parole to Leviste, who, he said, “was given VIP treatment” in New Bilibid Prison and at one time was caught outside the national penitentiary.
“We are outraged and we condemn this parole,” Jimenez said.
He said the PPA should inform the public about public hearings involving high-profile convicts like Leviste.
“If you recall, the criminal case filed against Mr. Leviste was ‘People of the Philippines vs Leviste,’” Jimenez said. “His crime is against the State so even if he had been forgiven by the family of his victim, the people have the right to be informed and express their objection [to the grant of parole to him].”
Jimenez said the VACC would ask the Department of Justice for documents from the PPA to determine the basis of the parole granted to Leviste.
On Jan. 12, 2007, Leviste admitted that he shot and killed De las Alas during an argument in his office in Legaspi Village, Makati City.
He was convicted of homicide in 2009 and sentenced to a minimum of six years’ to a maximum of 12 years’ imprisonment in the national penitentiary.
Prison Supt. Venancio Tesoro said Leviste was imprisoned for only four years, five months and one day.
But with his “good conduct time allowance” and detention in the Makati City Jail during his trial, Leviste had served his minimum sentence, Tesoro said.
“His age may have been considered. He is already 73 years old,” Tesoro said.
According to Tesoro, the PPA approved Leviste’s parole application on Nov. 19 but prison authorities took two weeks to review Leviste’s records.
“If he had [derogatory records] with the board of discipline here, his [application for] parole would have been denied. But there were no derogatory records so we processed his release papers,” Tesoro said.
It seems Leviste’s “excursions” out of prison were not considered a violation of his sentence.
In 2011, a television network discovered and exposed the special accommodations prison officials were extending to Leviste.
On May 19, 2011, National Bureau of Investigation agents found Leviste in his Makati office. They arrested him and took him back to the prison.
The discovery created a scandal at the Bureau of Corrections, leading to the resignation of the agency’s head, Ernesto Diokno, and the firing of five New Bilibid Prison officials by the justice department.
The corrections bureau brought charges against Leviste, accusing him of evasion of sentence, but Tesoro said the Makati court that heard the case dropped the charges.
“Leviste’s argument was that he was given permission by the [corrections bureau] to see his doctor,” Tesoro said.
The VACC’s Jimenez said his group would question the court’s decision to drop the charges against Leviste and might also move for the investigation of the judge.
Had Leviste been convicted, he would have been meted out a sentence of two to six years’ imprisonment in addition to his original sentence, Jimenez said.
As a result of his caper, however, Leviste lost his living-out privileges and he was transferred to the maximum security compound from the minimum security compound of the prison.
Now he is free again, though not totally free.
Tesoro said Leviste had to report regularly to a parole officer and maintain his good behavior.
He added that Leviste would be under parole supervision “until he serves his maximum sentence of 12 years.”
His parole papers, released by the PPA, state that, among other things, he should live in just one place and that he cannot engage in illegal activities or own a firearm.
He also cannot socialize with criminals.