Statement of the Commission on Human Rights on the case of the priest who went missing and found alive in Cavite

Statement of the Commission on Human Rights on the case of the priest who went missing and found alive in Cavite

The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) expresses grave concern over the incident involving Father Leoben Peregrino, currently the Rector and Parish Priest of the Diocesan Shrine and Parish of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary–Reina de Caracol in Rosario, Cavite, who went missing on 1 April 2022, and was later found alive with hands tied inside his vehicle in Silang, Cavite days after, Sunday, 3 April 2022.

Initial information on the incident reports that Fr. Peregrino left the parish in Rosario, Cavite to buy candles, but did not return until he was eventually found.

Updates from the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Diocese of Imus relay that the priest is presently recovering. The family was said to be also requesting privacy. We hope for Father Peregrino’s fast recovery.

CHR trusts that the PNP will pursue this case until the truth behind the incident is determined, and its perpetrators are held to account.

CHR stresses that involuntary disappearance, by way of kidnapping or similar means, is a serious human rights violation. It impinges on an individual’s right to liberty and security, and, in extreme cases, may even result in violation of the right to life. CHR shall be doing its part for an independent motu proprio investigation of this case.