Domestic helper’s remains arrive from Kuwait

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    THE remains of Filipina domestic helper Jeanelyn Villavende who was allegedly killed by her Kuwaiti employers reached the country late Wednesday afternoon.

    The body arrived at the PairCargo warehouse in Pasay city at past 4 in the afternoon.

    Earlier on Wednesday, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) “will do its own autopsy” on Villavende’s cadaver as requested by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III.

    “The NBI will do its own autopsy even as the DOJ examines any possible liability on the part of her recruiters. As to her unpaid salaries, if any, the Department of Labor and Employment will take care of that issue,” Guevarra said.

    An embalmment report from the Sabah Hospital in Kuwait, which was released by Bello, indicated Villavende’s death was caused by “acute failure of heart and respiration as result by shock and multiple injuries (in the) vascular nervous system.”

    Guevarra also said the DOJ is ready to work with Kuwaiti authorities to shed light on the killing of Villavende.

    H said that while Kuwaiti investigators have exclusive jurisdiction over the case since it took place in their country, they cannot stop the DOJ from assisting in the probe.

    “The Kuwaiti authorities have exclusive jurisdiction but we could provide any legal assistance that they may need, such as providing documents, affidavits of family members, text messages, emails to family members or photos that could help in the investigation,” he said.

    Kuwaiti Ambassador to Manila Musaed Ahmad Althwaikh has earlier told Bello that Villavende’s employers have already been charged in court.

    DFA Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. has also summoned the Kuwaiti envoy to express the government’s outrage over the seeming lack of protection of Filipinas deployed as domestic workers at the hands of their employers and to press for complete transparency in the investigation of the case and to call for the swift prosecution of the perpetrators. The killing of the domestic helper has prompted the Duterte government to issue a deployment ban to the oil-rich kingdom.