Bree Jonson, Julian Ongpin case has ‘double standards’ — lawyer | Inquirer News
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Bree Jonson, Julian Ongpin case has ‘double standards’ — lawyer

/ 11:48 AM September 27, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The case of Bree Jonson and Julian Ongpin has “double standards,” Atty. Ma. Moreni Salandanan, family lawyer of Jonson said on Monday.

Ongpin, linked to the death of Jonson, was earlier released by the prosecutor despite possession of 12.6 grams of cocaine and testing positive for its use.

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“Based from my experience, walang taong caught with possession of these amount of drugs ay nare-release for further investigations,” Salandanan said over Teleradyo, noting that she has had a hard time in other cases trying to release clients, who are not as well-off as Ongpin, from confinement.

(Based from my experience, no person caught with possession of these amounts of drugs is released for further investigations.)

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“In a sense, medyo mayroong double standards dito kasi what happened to my other clients before eh very different dito sa nangyayari sa kaso ni Julian at Bree,” she added.

(In a sense, it seems like there are double standards in this case as this is different from my other clients before.)

Salandanan said that they have asked the police to file a motion for reconsideration on Ongpin’s release, and the latter has signified its intent for filing.

“It’s just that, may time-bound ito kasi we are only given 10 days from the inquest resolution to file the motion for reconsideration. Malalaman natin kung — in the coming days, before the expiration of our period — eh maka-file ng motion for reconsideration ‘yung PNP (Philippine National Police),” she explained.

(It’s just that this is time-bound. We are given only 10 days from the inquest resolution to file the motion for reconsideration. We’ll know in the coming days if the PNP could file a motion for reconsideration.)

Salandanan likewise mentioned that Ongpin’s release is “unusual” as possession of 12 grams of cocaine is already punishable.

“Yes, this is very unusual kasi I believe nasa 12 grams ‘yung na-confiscate sa crime scene. I have seen the pictures of the inventory myself at medyo around 18 to 20 sachets ito,” Salandanan noted.

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(Yes, this is very unusual because I believe around 12 grams of cocaine was confiscated. I have seen the pictures of the inventory myself and it’s around 18 to 20 sachets.)

“As you know, ‘pag 12 grams and above po’ yung quantity ng na-confiscate na droga, punishable na ‘to by a capital offense, life imprisonment to death. This being the case, this is even non-bailable,” she further said.

(As you know, if the confiscated quantity is 12 grams and above, it is punishable by a capital offense, life imprisonment to death. This being the case, this is even non-bailable.)

She also questioned why Ongpin’s possessing and testing positive for drugs were not strong evidence against his release.

Salandanan also mentioned that there should be separate cases for possession, use, and alleged killing.

Meanwhile, PNP chief Guillermo Eleazar said that they respect the statement of Salandanan.

“Bilang abogado ng pamilya, nauunawan natin na kailangan niyang panigan at palakasin ang loob ng kanyang kliyente. At nirerespeto natin yun,” Eleazar said in a text message to INQUIRER.net.

(As the family’s lawyer, we understand that she has to side and give courage to her client. We respect that.)

“Subalit sana naman ay maunawaan at irespeto din niya na bilang mga alagad ng batas, ang aming focus ay malaman ang buong katotohanan upang maibigay ang tamang hustisya nang walang pinapanigan,” he added.

(However, I hope she understands and respects that we, as disciples of the law, our focus is to know the truth to serve justice without biases.)

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