RIYADH: Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) have expressed their appreciation to Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman for granting royal clemency to a Filipino before the completion of his sentence.
According to the Philippine Embassy in Riyadh, three Filipinos charged with murder last month have been repatriated.
“Saudi Arabia has proved once again the essence of Islam by granting them clemency. Indeed, it is good news for the entire Filipino community living in the Kingdom,” said Soler Garlan, head of Lanao Norte Expats based in Jeddah.
A Filipino rights group based in Riyadh paid tribute to the leadership of the Two Holy Mosques for his humanitarian gesture. “We are reminding our fellow OFWs, to observe and respect the laws, customs and tradition of the host government and to be good expatriate workers,” said John Leonard Monterona, the group’s coordinator.
The embassy said the king granted clemency to one of the male OFWs before the completion of his sentence upon payment of diyyah (blood money) by the accused to the victim’s family in the Philippines. He was released and repatriated to the Philippines on May 14.
The Filipino was sentenced to five years and ordered to pay a diyyah of 300,000 pesos (SR24,965) to the victim’s heir upon the latter’s demand, for killing another Filipino in Al Khafji in March 2011.
The other case is that of a female Filipino who was sentenced to four years and 200 lashes for killing her child upon delivery in a bathroom at her employer’s residence in Buraydah on July 14, 2011. She was assisted in court by the embassy-hired lawyer and received royal clemency prior to the completion of her sentence. The embassy repatriated her to the Philippines on June 11 this year.
The third case relates to a male Filipino charged with the murder of a Saudi policeman in Hail Province on June 30, 2012. In the court hearings, he maintained that he merely defended himself and his co-accused from the policeman, who assaulted them during the incident.
The court acquitted him. He was assisted by the embassy representatives who attended the court hearings. He was allowed to be repatriated to the Philippines on June 17.