The Philippines: Rights lawyer survives attack by playing dead, loses all case files


Human rights lawyer Angelo Karlo Guillen lost all his case files to two men who tried to kill him with screwdriver stabs to the head in an attack that Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon on Friday said had demonstrated the “chilling effect” of Red-tagging.

Guillen stopped struggling and pretended to be dead after one of his attackers stabbed him with a screwdriver, leaving it still embedded in his left temple when paramedics found him bleeding on a street in Iloilo City on Wednesday night, according to one of his friends.

“After he fell to the ground, he was at first kicking at one of the men who was near his legs while also trying to parry the stabbing of the one near his head,” Guillen’s friend told the Inquirer by phone in reply to questions for the lawyer who is recuperating in a hospital in Iloilo City.

Guillen’s friend asked not to be identified for security reasons.

After Guillen stopped moving, the assailants who wore ski masks, fled on two motorcycles driven by two accomplices.

The assailants took his backpack with personal belongings and a shoulder bag containing his laptop, external disk for backup files and case documents. They did not take his wallet and smartphone, which were inside his pockets.

All the documents of all his cases were in the laptop and external disk, Guillen told his friend.


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