Zapanta executed in Saudi Arabia
MANILA, Dec. 29 (PNA) -- Filipino Joselito Zapanta who was convicted for
the murder of a Sudanese national over a rental dispute was executed in
Saudi Arabia on Tuesday, the Department of Foreign Affairs said.
“We offer our sincere condolences to his family and loved ones for their
loss,” the DFA said in a statement.
Zapanta, 35, was convicted for killing Sudanese Imam Ibrahim, with robbery,
on April 13, 2010 by the Riyadh Grand Court. He was sentenced to death by
beheading after the family of the victim refused to execute an Affidavit of
Forgiveness or Tanazul in exchange for blood money.
Through repeated appeals from Philippine officials, Saudi authorities have
agreed to bring down to SR 4 million or Php 44 million the blood money from
the initial SR 5 million or Php 55 million being demanded by Zapanta’s
victim. However, not enough funds were raised to pay the diyah or blood
Blood money is a compensation under Shariah Law that is given to the family
of murder victims. Should they accept it, the family will execute an
affidavit of forgiveness so that death penalty will not be carried out on
The DFA said the Philippine government has undertaken and exhausted all
diplomatic and legal efforts, and extended consular and legal assistance to
preserve the life of Zapanta.
“The Philippine government provided the late Mr. Zapanta all necessary
assistance and ensured that his legal rights were observed throughout the
whole judicial process,” the department said, adding it arranged and funded
the jail visits of the Filpino’s mother and sister to the Malaz Central
Prison from November 28 to December 2, 2015, and on March 8, 2013 and
Zapanta is survived by his father, mother, sister, and two children.
The DFA said it will continue to extend assistance to Zapanta's family.
Foreigners, including a number of Filipinos, in the past have been executed
in Saudi Arabia, which has one of the harshest punishments for crimes in the
“We appeal to all our nationals overseas to follow the local laws of their
host countries at all times and to avoid involvement in criminal
activities,” the DFA said. (PNA)