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Drug charge against De Lima fake, pure invention – Justice Carpio

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Monday, October 16th, 2017

MANILA, Philippines — In his dissenting opinion, Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio enumerated the essential elements of an illegal drug trading case, which  Sen. Leila de Lima is facing.

To establish a case, the buyer and seller must be identified, the kind of illegal drugs and the transaction must be confirmed.

These were absent in the case of De Lima which also said that she received P10-million drug money and a P100,000 weekly “tara” or grease money from each of the high profile inmates in the New Bilibid Prison.

For Justice Carpio, the charge against De Lima is fake and pure invention and it will be a gross injustice if the court will allow her continued detention.

He said that the Sandiganbayan, not the RTC should try the case since the allegations happened when De Lima was still the DOJ secretary.

Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno agrees that De Lima’s arrest must be nullified and let the Ombudsman handle the investigation.

Associate Justices Estela Perlas-Bernabe, Marvic Leonen and Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa said the Muntinlupa RTC should have dismissed the case.

For Justice Bernabe, the RTC has no jurisdiction and Judge  Guerrero has no choice but to dismiss the case.

Justice Leonen noted that De Lima is a vocal critic of the Duterte administration and the charge is only meant to silence the senator.

Justice Caguioa said Judge Guerrero gravely abused her discretion and it is only right for De Lima to seek remedy with the Supreme Court.

For Justice Francis Jardeleza, the RTC judge violated De Lima’s rights when she ordered the arrest without first resolving the question her jurisdiction in the case.

De Lima can still seek a reconsideration of the high court’s decision.

But two justices need to change their position to reverse the ruling in her favor. — Roderic Mendoza | UNTV News & Rescue

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Carpio stands firm on West PH Sea rights despite possible impact on CJ nomination

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, October 17th, 2018

Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio

Nothing will stop Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonio Carpio from advocating a tougher stance in claiming Philippine’s sovereign rights to the West Philippine Sea — not even its potential impact on his nomination for chief justice of the Supreme Court (SC).

The possibility of his chances being affected due to his position on the issue is not lost on Justice Carpio, knowing that president Rodrigo Duterte, who holds the power to appoint the next chief justice, is friendly with China.

“It’s the prerogative of the president to appoint whoever he wants and I respect that. But that doesn’t stop me from continuing my advocacy because I think this is more important than anything else,” Carpio said.

Carpio made the statement during his lecture on the West Philippine Sea at the gathering of the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas in Makati, Tuesday night.

Last week, Carpio decided to accept his automatic nomination to the chief justice post, noting that the circumstances are different this time as there are no longer any legal issues involved unlike during the ouster bid against former Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno.

“Because in Sereno, my opinion stated that she could not be removed by quo warranto but she was removed. Now, I do not want to benefit from a ruling that I disagreed on. But now this is an expiration of term. De Castro’s term as CJ expired. There’s no legal issue anymore. That’s why I said there is no reason anymore to decline,” Carpio explained.

Other SC justices who accepted their automatic nominations are Associate Justices Lucas Bersamin, Estella Perlas-Bernabe and Andres Reyes Jr.

Justice Antonio Carpio is currently the acting chief justice after Chief Justice Teresita de Castro retired on October 10 upon reaching the mandatory retirement age of 70.

The Judicial and Bar Council of the Philippines (JBC) extended the deadline for the submission of applications and nominations until October 26.

If he is selected for the post, Carpio will have until October 2019 to lead the Supreme Court. — Mai Bermudez

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De Lima refuses to enter plea in second drug case

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Friday, August 10th, 2018

FILE PHOTO: Senator Leila de Lima

Despite objections from the camp of Senator Leila de Lima, the Muntinlupa Regional Trial Court Branch 205, presided by Judge Amelia Fabros-Corpuz, pushed through with arraignment of the senator on charges of conspiracy to commit illegal drug trading.

She is accused of conspiring with high-profile inmate, Peter Co who supposedly gave the former Justice Secretary P3-M and a vehicle in exchange for allowing illegal drugs into the national penitentiary through coordination with Jose Adrian Dera.

De Lima refused once again to enter a plea in what she called “a sham case.”

“Your Honor, this charge is pure invention, pure fabrication. It’s a sham case. So there’s nothing to plead to. So therefore, I refuse to enter a plea,” she told the judge at her arraignment on Friday.

Under the court rules, when a defendant refuses to enter a plea, an automatic “not guilty” plea is entered by the court on his or her behalf.

The Department of Justice initially filed drug trading charges against De Lima but later amended it to conspiracy to commit illegal drug trading.

De Lima’s camp protested the amendment claiming that the prosecution substituted an entirely new information
considering that the original crime they have imputed against her was that of illegal drug trading.

“The amended information is a duplicitous charge, a flagrant violation against me, of my constitutional right to be duly informed of the nature of the accusations against me,” she said.

Judge Amelia Fabros-Corpuz junked earlier the senator’s motion for reconsideration which sought the review of new information and charges filed against her by the Department of Justice.

De Lima’s camp insisted that up to now, the prosecution team has yet to identify the type of drugs that were allegedly used in the purported drug trade and other evidence they plan to present against her.

“Yun nga ‘yung masakit doon ‘eh. Ni hindi nga namin alam kung anong sasakyan ‘yung kinuha ni Sen. De Lima,” said Atty. Tacardon.

De Lima’s legal team is currently preparing for the pre-trial of the case in September. — Mai Bermudez


New Ombudsman Samuel Martires sworn into office

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Monday, August 6th, 2018

Justice Samuel Martires (center) sworn in as the new Ombudsman


MANILA, Philippines – Retired Supreme Court Associate Justice Samuel Martires has sworn into office as the new Ombudsman.

Acting Chief Justice Antonio Carpio administered Martires’ oathtaking on Monday (August 6).

Martires, who was chosen by President Rodrigo Duterte, opted for an early retirement as SC Associate Justice to replace Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales.

Morales ended her term on July 26. – UNTV News & Rescue

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