Rodrigo Duterte tells police to kill his son if it's proven he smuggles drugs

Paolo Duterte, son of Rodrigo.
Paolo Duterte, son of Rodrigo. Photo credit: Reuters

Rodrigo Duterte has told Philippine police to kill his son if rumours he's involved in drug-smuggling turn out to be true.

"My orders are to kill you if you are caught, and I will protect the police who kill you," the hardline President said, talking directly to his 42-year-old son Paolo Duterte.

Paolo Duterte is Rodrigo's eldest son, and currently Vice Mayor of Davao City. He is suspected to have involvement in the meth trade and links to Chinese triads - allegations he has fiercely denied.

In a speech on Wednesday (local time), his father said if it's true, he must die so "the people can't say anything against me".

"I can say to people, 'There, you keep talking. That's my son's corpse.'"

Amnesty International estimates more than 7000 have lost their lives in Rodrigo Duterte's crackdown on drugs - not just the dealers, but users too. 

He was elected on promises to rid the country of its drug problems.

Two weeks ago, Paolo Duterte appeared before the Philippine Senate to answer accusations he had a dragon tattoo on his back, proving his links to Chinese organised crime. Paolo refused to show it.

"Once and for all, I now have the time to deny any and all baseless allegations thrown against me," he told the Senate.

His father initially responded by calling on the army to engage the accuser, Senator Antonia Trillanes, in a gun duel.


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