Call for the immediate release of Raven Ladawan and Ricca Llanes!


The Jennifer Carifio Command (JCC) New People’s Army — Benguet Province demands the immediate release of Raven Ladawan and Ricca Llanes, both of whom are currently illegally detained by the AFP in the 503rd Infantry Brigade’s Headquarters in Calanan, Tabuk City, Kalinga.

Ladawan and Llanes, husband and wife, were arrested by elements of the AFP and PNP in Bekkes, Buguias, Benguet last August 7, 2021 while on their way to meet members of their family. For more than a month, their whereabouts were unknown and just recently, reliable sources notified the JCC NPA- Benguet of their current location.

Reactionary state forces deviously manipulated the parents of the couple to cooperate for their capture with the promise that the fascists would swiftly “clear” the couple’s names and that they could be reunited with their family afterwards. None of these promises were kept.

Instead, while under the clutches of the AFP, they were continuously being subjected to psychological and emotional torture in an effort to break their spirits, shatter their morale and force them to surrender.

The couples’ continued detention after more than a month is illegal, even by the standards of Duterte’s lopsided “Anti-Terror Law”. Section 29 of the said law stipulates that warrantless arrest and detention of violators should only occur within 14 days, with provision for a maximum of 10 days extension. This underscores the tendency of the AFP to act outside the bounds of law, even one that was crafted by its own hands.

Notwithstanding the said “Anti-Terror Law”, warrantless arrest and detention is a violation of the rights of an individual under International Humanitarian Law.

By doing so, the AFP has already given up all pretenses of a fair and just trial for the two. As the primary complainant in the trumped-up cases already filed and to be filed against the couple, the reactionary army exercises undue influence over the two while they are under their custody.

Friends and relatives of the couple should demand for their immediate removal from the AFP’s hands, the provision of legal representation of their choice, and to drop all the trumped-up charges against the two.

As we commemorate the 49th anniversary of Martial Law, let us take to heart the lessons gleaned from history and staunchly condemn all the atrocities that still occur today, reminiscent of the dark days of blatant tyranny.

Call for the immediate release of Raven Ladawan and Ricca Llanes!