OFW Jennifer Dalquez acquitted, saved from death row
Jailed Filipina domestic helper Jennifer Dalquez has been saved from death row after being acquitted on murder charges in the United Arab Emirates, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) announced Tuesday morning.
"The Philippine Embassy in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE) reported to the DFA that the Court of Appeals in Al Ain acquitted Jennifer Dalquez from the alleged crime of murder at a hearing on 19 June 2017," the DFA said in a statement.
Migrante International had earlier announced that Dalquez had been saved from death row.
The DFA said that Dalquez was acquitted without diyyah or payment of blood money, but has to serve a five-year jail term "less than the number of days she spent in jail, for stealing a mobile phone."
In an interview on News To Go, Alicia Dalquez confirmed that DFA-Manila informed her that her daughter had been saved from death row.
Alicia said they received the call from the DFA around 6 p.m. Monday.
"Masayang masaya ako. Nabunutan ng tinik ang dibdib ko. Wala nang kaba," she said.
Alicia added that they have already talked with Dalquez over the phone on Monday.
"Mensahe niya nagpapasalamat siya sa lahat," she said.
Alicia said Dalquez has already served half of the five-year jail term and she will be able to return home in more than two years.
She said Dalquez will no longer work overseas.
Dalquez was arrested on December 12, 2014, days after stabbing her employer who the Filipina worker claimed was trying to rape her at knifepoint.
She was sentenced to death by the Al Ain Court of First Instance on May 20, 2015, but was given an opportunity under Islamic law to have the decision reversed if the victim's sons will not swear in the name of Allah that she killed their father and instead opt for the payment of blood money.
The sons reportedly failed to attend the hearings as required by the court, prompting Dalquez's lawyer to move for her acquittal. —Michaela del Callar/ALG/KVD, GMA News