If the accused will be found guilty today, prosecution lawyers said Wednesday, December 18, that each family of Ampatuan massacre victims could receive as much as P20 million in civil damages. 

However, law professor Ted Te explained on Thursday that under the law, those each of convicted would be required to pay only P50,000 in damages. 

In order for the victims’ families to receive each of the said amount, the prosecution’s lawyers would have to prove their case in terms of consequential damages.

“They would go into earning capacity, what had been lost,” Te said

“If the person who was killed was the breadwinner or if the person that was killed was a young enough person that would have gone on to a lucrative profession, would this person have earned this much if he or she lived this long? So it goes into all of those items, the judge must make an appreciation of the private prosecution presented for each one,” he added. 

This may take some time at the reading of the verdict today, Te predicted, as the judge must explain why each of the convicted must pay a certain amount.

Moreover, each of the accused, if found guilty, could face up to 40 years in prison. Meanwhile, those who have been in preventive detention for the past 10 years could face only 30 years.

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