DOJ orders release of Marawi vice mayor arrested for rebellion

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 15) — The Department of Justice (DOJ) has ordered the release of Marawi City Vice Mayor Arafat Salic, who was arrested Wednesday over rebellion charges.

Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Peter Ong said the complaint filed by the police Criminal Investigation and Detection Group against Salic was "not inquestable."

He explained that an inquest only applies to warrantless arrest, when a crime is being committed, a person is about to commit a crime or a person to be arrested escaped from detention while being transported.

"What was filed as an inquest case was wrong," Ong said. "Please do not do again. That magkakasama tayo sa trabaho, magkakahiyaan tayo [That we work together, we'll all get embarrassed.] Do not insist on what is wrong."

Salic was included in a martial law arrest order, but prosecutors said Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has revoked this.

The DOJ will instead conduct regular preliminary investigation on the complaint.

The Philippine Army said yesterday that Salic is included in the Office of the Martial Law Administrator's arrest order for rebellion, in relation to his alleged involvement in the Maute-ISIS takeover of Marawi City in May 2017.

His brother, former Marawi Mayor Fajad "Pre" Salic, was also arrested in 2017 for rebellion in line with the order issued by  Lorenzana.

CNN Philippines Correspondent Anjo Alimario contributed to this report.