The “Free Tom Randall” Facebook page now carries the exultant headlines “ALL CHARGES DROPPED ,TOM RANDALL IS FREE”.
The almost 58,000 people who have “liked” the page are rejoicing in the perceived victory of justice and God…and many are implying that those who brought this matter to the attention of the authorities were on the side of neither.
The celebration may be premature…sources in the Philippines tell me that while Randall was cleared there, what may have taken place in reality was a handoff to American authorities for further investigation.
Randall was not accused of the physical abuse of the children, but of negligence in oversight of the orphanage where the alleged abuse took place.
The persons in charge of the home, Toto Luchavez and his son Jake, are accused of sex crimes and there may be other arrests pending further investigation.
Those two remain in custody with further explanation of the charges against them expected today.
They are not being held because of the accusations of a “rival missionary”, but because of the sworn statements of children who claim systemic abuse since 2005.
So far, few of Randalls legion of supporters want to acknowledge that fact while they beseech God to fix the injustices done in this matter.
Randalls defense was familiar according to this article;
“I have not trafficked the children of Sankey nor did I ignore their complaints,” Randall stated in the affidavit, which also claimed authorities had no probable cause to arrest him without a warrant and that he was entitled to be released immediately based on a lack of evidence.
Randall explained in the affidavit that even though he founded Sankey to “help orphans and give them a better chance at life,” he does not own, lease or sublease any of Sankey’s property or facilities nor is he an incorporator, director or officer of the orphanage.
The local pastor, who is former chaplain for the PGA Champions Tour, stated that he is based in the United States and spends about one month annually, during December and January, in the Philippines.
“However, I remained in constant touch with Sankey as an adviser, and always helped out in securing funds for the operations of Sankey. I would always make myself available should Sankey need my guidance. In fact, since the formation of Sankey, I would ensure that I come to the Philippines during the months of December or January to spend Christmas and New Year with the children and to assist in managing its affairs,” Randall stated.
Articles of incorporation attached to Randall’s affidavit indicate that the orphanage is run by a board of trustees. Documentation of the orphanage’s pending renewal of its license through the Department of Social Welfare and Development indicates Sankey provides “residential care services for orphaned, abandoned, neglected and surrender children.”
The orphanage is part of the Randalls’ mission organization, called World Harvest Ministries. Randall is listed as the director of the ministry, which was established in 1990.”
In other words, he claims no legal liability for what may have happened in that facility.
According to this article, the board is the usual friends and family…with the voting majority held by family.
Randall is coming home to what will be a hero’s welcome…while in the Philippines children who claim to have been violated are in fear that their abusers may be allowed bail.
There is no Facebook page beseeching God on their behalf.
More information as it becomes available…