The Philippines has deported a U.S. marine who was convicted of killing a transgender woman in 2014 after he was granted an absolute pardon by President Rodrigo Duterte - a move decried by activists as a "mockery of justice."
Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton boarded on American military aircraft bound for the United States on Sunday (September 13) morning, a Bureau of Immigration spokeswoman said.
Details of his flight arrangements had not been disclosed until after he left amid tight security arrangements.
Pemberton was found guilty of killing Jennifer Laude in a hotel in Olongapo, outside a former U.S. navy base, six years ago.
The case sparked debate over the U.S. military presence in its former colony.
Presidential spokesman Harry Roque, who served as a lawyer in the prosecution of Pemberton, had said Duterte's decision to pardon the marine may have stemmed from his desire to get access to coronavirus vaccines.
But the Philippine health ministry said that none of the U.S. vaccine makers the government is in talks with had set any conditions.