MANILA—Sen. Francis Pangilinan on Friday filed a measure to require crematories to keep proper records to aid investigations requiring identification of cremated remains.
Under Senate Bill 1312 or the “Mandatory Collection of Biological Specimen and Identification Samples Act of 2017”, crematories are required to keep books of record containing the name, age, sex, and residence of each person whose body is cremated.
It also requires crematories to keep in file digital photos, dental impression, and biological samples for purposes of DNA analysis which can be opened at reasonable times for inspection.
Pangilinan, in the bill’s explanatory note, stressed the ease with which criminals bury all traces of their crime through cremation.
“Appropriate measures must become necessary to ensure that cremation will not be taken advantage of by criminal elements to obstruct investigations and ultimately, the delivery of justice,” Pangilinan said.
Pangilinan earlier filed Senate Bill 1307 which pushes for mandatory autopsy in suspicious death cases. It also requires forensic autopsies be conducted in 12 instances, including deaths resulting from commission of crimes, deaths occurring under suspicious circumstances, and deaths occurring in prison or penal institution or while in custody of the police.
The senator further said that these two measures were filed in response to the kidnap-slay case of South Korean businessman Jee Ik Joo and several deaths linked to the intensified campaign against illegal drugs.
Reports showed that Korean national’s body was brought to a crematorium in Caloocan City last Oct. 19, 2016 where his death certificate identified him as a Filipino under the name Jose Ruamar Salvador.
Jee was abducted from his home in Angeles City, Pampanga and was killed hours later. Some members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) have been linked to his abduction-slay.