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MANILA - The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has ordered the deportation of US Marine Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton, the suspect in the killing of Filipino transgender Jennifer Laude, for being an undesirable alien.
In a five-page resolution issued September 16, the bureau said Pemberton is deemed undesirable and unfit to stay in the country.
The BI also ordered Pemberton's name be put in the bureau's blacklist so that he will never be allowed to re-enter the Philippines.
The resolution came after Pemberton filed a petition for self-deportation and after the prosecution witnesses alias Barbie and the cashier of Celzone Lodge testified before the Senate.
The BI said their testimonies, as well as Pemberton's own admission that he was with Laude and subjected Laude to physical harm, were enough basis for his deportation.
The BI said the deportation is subject to the clearance of the Olongapo Regional Trial Court (RTC), which is handling the Laude murder case. The RTC is set to hand down its decision on the Laude case next month.
"The deportation case is not the same as the criminal case. However, Pemberton will not be deported until the criminal case is resolved or when the court clears him for deportation," BI spokesperson Atty. Elaine Tan said.
Atty. Harry Roque, counsel of the Laude family, welcomed the BI's order, saying it was at the instance of the Laude family that Pemberton be subjected to deportation proceedings.
"It proves that he is indeed an undesirable alien arising from the killing of Jennifer. This notwithstanding, his deportation should be after he serves his sentence, if found guilty. Any contrary ruling will accord him with impunity," Roque said.
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