Press Release
May 7, 2019

PRIB: Koko calls for longer prison term vs reckless drivers

Stiffer penalties, which include longer prison terms, should be imposed on those who will be found guilty of reckless imprudence and negligence.

Sen. Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III has filed Senate Bill No. 118, amending Article 365 of Act No. 3815, otherwise known as the Revised Penal Code.

Pimentel said the enactment of the measure would serve as a deterrent against cases involving damage to properties and loss of lives.

"One of the purposes of criminal laws is the protection of members of society from potential wrongdoers. These laws are directed against acts or omissions which society does not approve of and therefore serve as deterrents against incidents that may claim lives or cause damage to property," he said.

The senator cited the 2014 Bulacan State University field trip tragedy, Kentex slipper factory fire and the sinking of M/B Kim Nirvana in 2015, candy poisoning in Caraga region few years ago and a number of other vehicular accidents.

"The tragedies were caused by people who recklessly disregarded standards of care which our laws have imposed," Pimentel added.

"To avoid similar episodes in the future, it is proposed that Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code be amended to provide our law on reckless imprudence and negligence more teeth by increasing the penalties of imprisonment and fine therein," Pimentel explained.

The senator proposed the imposition of prision correccional in its medium and maximum periods.

Medium length of incarceration under pricion correccional is two years, four months and 1 day to four years and two months while maximum period would mean 10 years and one day to 12 years.

Under the existing provision of Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code, "any person, who, by reckless imprudence, shall commit any act which, had it been intentional, would constitute grave felony, shall suffer the penalty of arresto mayor in its maximum period to prision correccional in its medium period."

In cases when, by imprudence or negligence has caused the death of a person, the penalty is sought to be increased from prision correccional to prision mayor in its maximum period to reclusion temporal in its minimum period.

This means increasing the period of incarceration from the existing two to six-year imprisonment to a minimum of 10 to 12-year jail sentence to 14 years and eight months.

As far as monetary penalties are concerned, Pimentel wanted to increase the existing fine of P200 to P40,000 against anyone who have committed a light felony.

Pimentel also called for the disqualification from probation those who will be found to have intentionally committed reckless imprudence or grave felony that resulted in the death of a person.

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