Press Release
August 15, 2013


Senator Cynthia Villar on Thursday said lowering the age of criminal liability from 15 to 13 years old will not curb the problem of juvenile delinquency.

Reducing the age of discernment and criminal responsibility is one of the key features in the recently launched Philippine Code of Crimes or House Bill 2300, authored by House justice committee chairman Iloilo Rep. Niel Tupas.

Tupas said a 13-year old now is way physically, emotionally, and intellectually more mature than a 13-year-old in 1932.

"We should also look into holding the parents or guardians of these delinquent children accountable for the crimes committed especially when it is proven that the 'elders' were the ones who instigated the 'young' to commit the crimes," said Villar.

She stressed that the parents or guardians should also be investigated for a crime committed by their children or wards.

She cited instances when syndicate members and leaders ordered or enticed children, particularly those under their custody, to engage in unlawful activities like pickpocket, holdup, snatching, robbery holdup and other crimes.

In this case, Villar said the law should run after these members and leaders of syndicates using children to violate the laws.

According to the senator, parents are bound by law to take care and look after the welfare of their children.

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