NY Fil-Ams demand tougher penalty for Pemberton

NEW YORK CITY A week after US Marine Joseph Scott Pemberton was found guilty of homicide in the death of transgender Pinay Jennifer Laude in the Philippines, Filipino activists in New York are calling on the US government to turn over custody of the US Marine to the Philippine government.

Bayan USA’ s Bernadette Ellorin said,  “Tonight is part of International Day of action, demanding the US government turn over Joseph Scott Pemberton, the marine convicted of killing Jennifer Laude last year, and for the US government not to interfere with the Philippine justice system’s decision to convict Pemberton of homicide and for killing Jennifer Laude.”

Protesters are also demanding for what they call “real justice.”

Cole Carothers of Gabriela, NY said, “We feel that a verdict of homicide is unjust and unfair, for the violence, extreme violence that has happened to Jennifer Laude and continues to happen to Filipino women by US military.”

An online petition was launched on Dec. 4 asking President Obama to turn over Pemberton to Philippine custody now.

The petition’s goal is to gather at least a thousand signatures by Sunday Dec 6, the deadline for the US and the Philippines to finalize Pemberton’s custody situation.

“The fact of the matter is there have been many Jennifer Laude’s whose stories have never been told, whose killings have never been convicted and they still roam free. There will be many more Jennifer Laudes, Filipino men and women,” Ellorin said.

Pemberton will be detained in a facility as agreed by the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs, the Visiting Forces Agreement Commission, and the US Embassy.

Pemberton is temporarily detained in Camp Aguinaldo.

You may contact Don_Tagala@abs-cbn.com for more information.

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