Quantcast
Latest Stories

De Lima bristles at contempt suit: ‘Something happened’

By

She’s in a bind, but she’s not taking things sitting down, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said, amid a contempt suit filed against her by one of the principal suspects in the January 2011 murder of Palawan broadcaster Gerry Ortega.

Through his lawyer Demetrio Custodio Jr.,  Palawan Gov. Joel Reyes last week asked the Court of Appeals to cite De Lima in contempt for having impugned the court’s reputation “by insinuating that it could be influenced to decide a case in one way or another by a party’s ‘foul tactics and illicit means.’”

‘Something happened’

“(But) I cannot just take it sitting down, a decision like that (when) I know something happened,” De Lima said of the decision of a Court of Appeals special division last March 19 to nullify the murder charges against the Palawan governor and his brother Coron Mayor Mario Reyes Jr.

Saying she refused to be cowed into silence, De Lima said she has information from a credible source that “something happened,” which led to the appeals’ court decision, but admitted that she cannot back up her claim with solid proof since her source will not support her publicly.

“I wish I can reveal it, but I know something about what happened in that case. But my problem is, I cannot reveal it without solid proof,” the justice secretary told Department of Justice (DOJ) reporters on Monday.

A-1 source

“I have information from an A-1 source but I don’t think my source is willing to back me up or confirm it. Kaya tatahimik na lang ako (That’s why I’ll just keep quiet). I am asking the (Office of Solicitor General) to defend me,” she added.

The appeals court special tenth division invalidated the second DOJ panel De Lima had created to re-investigate the involvement of the Reyes brothers in the Ortega murder.

In a 3-2 vote, the Court of Appeals said the justice secretary had committed a grave abuse of discretion when she created the second panel of investigators without acting on the petition for review filed by Ortega’s daughter Michaella on the decision of the first DOJ panel.

The appeals court in effect reinstated the decision of the first panel dismissing the murder charges against the Reyes brothers.

Asked about the contempt suit, De Lima said her remarks about the appeals’ court decision were within her “right to express (her) thoughts.”

Quest for justice

She continued: “They can sue me all they want but I cannot buckle down in the quest for justice in that particular case. I cannot be cowed in the exercise of my right to free expression. I was expressing my frustration about the development of the case, (in) particular about that resolution.”

De Lima shared her consternation over the contempt suit during her meeting with “running priest” Fr. Robert Reyes, who has been helping the Ortega family.

In an interview with the Inquirer after their meeting at the DOJ, Reyes defended De Lima by questioning the integrity of the five-member Court of Appeals division that cleared the Reyes brothers.

“(De Lima) should not be cowed by threats of legal suits by the Reyes camp. This is all they can do because Secretary De Lima cannot be bribed,” Reyes said.


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: Contempt , court , Court of Appeals , Joel Reyes , Leila de Lima , Ortega case , Philippines




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
Advertisement
  1. US teacher fired over comment on black president
  2. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  3. Filipinos, Dane re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  4. Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  5. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Massive infra spending set
  8. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  9. Easter crucifixions draw huge crowds
  10. Korea ferry captain arrested, divers spot bodies
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  7. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  8. Massive infra spending set
  9. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  10. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  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. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  8. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  9. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
Advertisement

News

  • 16 suffer burns in Batangas sugar factory accident
  • Angat level drops; cloud seeding set
  • Indigenous aspiration in Bangsamoro
  • Banahaw continues to lure pilgrims, trekkers
  • Passion of Christ moves survivors
  • Sports

  • Tottenham beats Fulham 3-1 in Premier League
  • Martino defends Messi, takes blame for Barca fail
  • Vettel hoping for resurgence at Chinese GP
  • MLB pitcher donates $100,000 for Sewol ferry victims
  • Hamilton takes pole at Chinese Grand Prix
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Why ‘Noah’ can’t dock his ark at Philippine theaters
  • Acclaimed artist goes wild while on holiday
  • Believing in this mermaid
  • Missing Xian
  • Minnie Driver plays devastated mother to a stillborn child
  • Business

  • A workplace of new possibilities
  • Learning by doing: pilgrimage of faith
  • Fiat-Chrysler to produce iconic Jeep in China from 2015
  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • Cesar Chavez movie sparks memories of Fil-Am labor leaders
  • Filipinos in US poised for success
  • Visas for priests and other faith leaders
  • DOH to continue tracking co-passengers of OFW infected with MERS virus
  • 5 Filipinos with MERS in UAE reported in stable condition
  • Marketplace
    Advertisement