US marine convicted of homicide in Philippines

A US marine has been convicted of homicide in the killing of a transgender woman in the Philippines.

Lance Cpl. Joseph Scott Pemberton, who had been charged with murder for the killing of Jennifer Laude in a motel in October 2014, was convicted of a lesser offense of homicide and sentenced to six to 12 years in jail on Tuesday.

Judge Roline Jinez Jabalde cited mitigating circumstances for reducing the marine’s charge. He said that the victim had not revealed her gender identity to the marine, whom she had met in a nightclub in Olongapo City.

The judge ruled that the marine would be held temporarily at the national penitentiary until the two countries decide where he should serve his sentence.

Attorneys for the victim’s family, however, questioned the sentence. Lawyer Harry Roque expressed outrage that the sentence was reduced on those grounds.

“We are very angry that the court considered these mitigating circumstances,” he said.


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