Latest Stories

SC affirms dismissal of charges vs Lacson in Kuratong ‘rubout’



MANILA, Philippines— The Supreme Court upheld the November, 2003 decision of the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 81 that dismissed the multiple murder case against Senator Panfilo Lacson and 33 others.

In a 24-page decision, the high court through Associate Justice Roberto Abad, said QC RTC Branch 81 Judge Ma. Theresa Yadao did not abuse her discretion when she dismissed the case against Lacson and several others for lack of probable cause.

Probable cause are facts discovered through investigation that would lead a reasonably intelligent and prudent person to believe that a person has committed a crime and deserves to be prosecuted.

“The Court agrees with Judge Yadao that the above affidavits and reports, taken together with the other documents of record, fail to establish probable cause against the respondents,” the high court said.

Prosecutors have submitted to the lower court five affidavits from witnesses and reports from the Philippine National Police.

Still, the prosecutors said Judge Yadao should have ordered them to present additional evidence as stated under Rule 112 of the Rules of Court if she still has doubts in determining if there is probable cause to order the arrest of the accused or not.

But the high court pointed that requiring the prosecutors to present additional evidence is not mandatory.

“The court’s first option is for it to immediately dismiss the case if the evidence on record clearly fails to establish probable cause. That is the situation here: the evidence on record clearly fails to establish probable cause against the respondents,” the high court said.

“It is only ‘in case of doubt on the existence of probable cause’ that the judge may order the prosecutor to present additional evidence within five days from notice. But that is not the case here. Discounting the affidavits [submitted by the prosecution], nothing is left in the record that presents some doubtful probability that respondents committed the crime charged,” the high court added.

“In the absence of probable cause to indict respondents for the crime of multiple murder, they should be insulated from the tribulations, expenses and anxiety of a public trial,” the high court said.

Yadao, in her ruling said the evidence submitted by the prosecution as well as the testimonies of the new witnesses — Senior Inspectors Ismael Yu and Abelardo Ramos, Senior Police Officer 1 Wilmor Medes, SPO2 Noel Seno and civilian agent Mario Enad — were “full of loopholes making the accusations less credible and bereft of merit.”

Lacson, along with Chief Superintendents Jewel Canson, Romeo Acop and Francisco Zubia, Senior Superintendents Michael Ray Aquino, Cesar Mancao III and Glenn Dumlao and 31 other police officers were indicted for the murder of the alleged members of Kuratong Baleleng robbery gang on May 18, 1995.

Lacson used to lead Task Force Habagat of the defunct Presidential Anti-Crime Commission headed by then Vice President Joseph Estrada.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Crime , Kuratong Baleleng , Panfilo Lacson , rubout , Supreme Court

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. Senator’s kickback from pork bigger than those of Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – Lacson
  2. 12 senators on Napoles ‘pork’ list, says Lacson
  3. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  4. Sandigan junks Marcos family claim to Paoay property
  5. Delfin Lee: Blame Pag-Ibig, not me
  6. Cedric Lee’s cohort flies out of PH despite look-out order – De Lima
  7. San Juan cops fail to arrest Cedric Lee
  8. Maid confesses in killing of 2 and stabbing of employer in Laguna
  9. More ‘Yolanda’ bodies found
  10. Vitangcol to sue Czech envoy
  1. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  2. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  3. Estrada: Gigi Reyes won’t testify vs JPE
  4. Bernice Lee arrested by NBI team
  5. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Suspect in Vhong Navarro’s mauling wants to turn state witness – De Lima
  8. Reckless driver endangered lives of Aquino, entourage–report
  9. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  10. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  8. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  9. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
  10. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima


  • Ex-church leader nabbed for selling drugs
  • Camilla’s brother dies in US after head injury
  • Luisita farmers storm DAR compound
  • Trillanes, Ejercito confident they are not in Napoles’ list
  • Easterlies to prevail in Luzon, Visayas
  • Sports

  • Heat go up 2-0, hold off Bobcats 101-97
  • Ronaldo shakes off injury fears to play Bayern
  • Mavs roll past Spurs 113-92, even series at 1-1
  • Phelps having fun in his return to swimming
  • Murray breaks down in tears at Scottish ceremony
  • Lifestyle

  • Photos explore dynamics of youths’ sexual identity
  • 12th Philippine Food Expo set at the World Trade Center
  • No tourist draw, Malang the croc will remain wild
  • The best flavors of summer in one bite, and more
  • Homemade yogurt, bread blended with pizza, even ramen
  • Entertainment

  • Has Ai Ai fallen deeply with ‘sireno?’
  • Sony developing live-action Barbie comedy
  • California court won’t review Jackson doctor case
  • Return of ‘Ibong Adarna’
  • Practical Phytos plans his future
  • Business

  • Facebook profits triple as mobile soars
  • Insular Honors Sales Performers at Testimonial Rites
  • Apple increases stock buyback, will split stock
  • Cost-recovery provisions for affected gencos urged
  • This time, BIR goes after florists
  • Technology

  • Top Traits of Digital Marketers
  • No truth to viral no-visa ‘chronicles’
  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Viber releases new design for iPhone, comes to Blackberry 10 for the first time
  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 24, 2014
  • Talking to Janet
  • Respite
  • Bucket list
  • JPII in 1981: walking a tightrope
  • Global Nation

  • Filipinos in Middle East urged to get clearance before returning
  • PH seeks ‘clearer assurance’ from US
  • China and rivals sign naval pact to ease maritime tensions
  • What Went Before: Manila bus hostage crisis
  • Obama arrives in Tokyo, first stop of 4-nation tour
  • Marketplace