Case vs suspected drug lords ‘far from being final’ – Roque
The case against alleged drug lords Peter Lim, Kerwin Espinosa, and Peter Co is “far from being final.”
This was the declaration of Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque as he assured the public the decision to dismiss the cases against the alleged high-profile drug personalities due to weak evidence would be reviewed by Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II.
Roque also said the government would file additional evidence against the alleged drug lords if needed.
“Binibigyan ko po ng kompirmasyon na nababahala kami sa pagbabasura ng reklamo pero gaya ng aking sinabi, hindi naman natin alam ang basehan ng mga piskal kung bakit binasura yan at hindi pa tapos ang proseso,” Roque said in a press briefing.
(We confirm that we are concerned over the dismissal of the complaint but like what I’ve just said, we still do not know the basis of the prosecutors why they junked it and the process is not yet over.)
The Inquirer reported on Monday the DOJ panel’s dismissal of drug complaints filed against Lim, President Rodrigo Duterte’s kumpadre (wedding sponsor); Espinosa, a self-confessed drug lord; and Co, a convicted drug lord; as well as Lovely Impal, Marcelo Adorco, Max Miro, Ruel Malindangan, Jun Pepito, and other personalities known only by their aliases.
The DOJ resolution, approved by Prosecutor General Jorge Catalan, was issued by a panel of DOJ prosecutors on December 20, 2017.
Roque said the dismissal would not affect the drug case against Senator Leila De Lima, who was charged on the basis of the statements of Espinosa and Co, because there are several others who could testify against the detained lawmaker.
Roque also denounced claims that the DOJ dismissed the charges against Lim because of his connection with Duterte.
“Alam niyo po, unfair naman iyon na pagbasa na naging kumpadre sa kasal. Lahat po ng siguro ng nanunungkulan sa gobyerno parang ang daming kasal na pinupuntahan at hindi naman nakakapili kung sino ang magiging kumpadre, ang nagdedesisyon po ay yung kinakasal,” he said.
(You know, the insinuations were unfair. Government officials are always invited to weddings and they are unable to choose who will be the wedding sponsors, the one who will decide are the bride and groom.)
“So sakin po walang basehan ang ganyang paratang, hayaan na muna nating umusad ang proseso dyan sa DOJ,” he added.
(So for me, those allegations are baseless, let us just let the DOJ proceed with its case.)
Duterte and Lim stood as principal sponsors during the wedding of wealthy Cebu business couple, Yuri Ofek and Beatrice Borja, in June 2016.
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