Veloso lawyer believes execution still postponed indefinitely
The Filipino lawyer of Mary Jane Veloso still believes her execution is still postponed indefinitely despite a Jakarta Post report that said President Rodrigo Duterte has given it the "go-ahead" during his meeting with Indonesian President Joko Widodo last week.
Malacañang has denied that Duterte gave such a statement, saying what the President told Widodo was to "follow your own laws."
In a statement posted on Facebook, Edre Olalia of the National Union of People's Lawyers (NUPL) noted that the "reported statements" of Duterte and Widodo about Veloso "are not identical yet they are not incompatible."
"We believe there may be parsing or nuancing somewhere of apparently conflicting and confusing accounts which in fact are not contradictory," he said.
Pending clarification, Olalia said they are holding on to the official line that states Veloso remains on death row in Indonesia after being convicted for drug trafficking, and that her execution is postponed indefinitely "to await the results of the cases in the Philippines against her alleged recruiters and traffickers."
He also said they believe clemency is still a viable option in Veloso's case.
"As lawyers, we need to be prudent and circumspect on such a serious and sensitive matter absent a studied, categorical and unequivocal statement or unassailable information either way," Olalia said.
"Meanwhile, we await the taking of her deposition even as we regroup, look forward and await Mary Jane to come home eventually," he added.
Olalia and the NUPL are representing Veloso and her family in the case filed against her alleged recruiters, Ma. Cristina Sergio and Julius Lacanilao, before a Nueva Ecija court.
The Indonesian government postponed Veloso's execution last year to allow her to testify against the two, whom she accused of duping her into bringing 2.6 kilograms of heroin to Indonesia in 2010. —KBK, GMA News