Enrile offers to dismiss 5 articles of impeachment withdrawn by prosecution | Inquirer News

Enrile offers to dismiss 5 articles of impeachment withdrawn by prosecution

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile on Wednesday offered to dismiss the five articles of impeachment earlier withdrawn by the prosecution, if only to satisfy the camp of Chief Justice Renato Corona.

“I have no problem with dismissing these articles, that’s just a formality at this point,” said Enrile, who presides over the impeachment court.


Shortly before Enrile spoke with reporters, the lead defense counsel, Serafin Cuevas, said his camp would file a motion to dismiss the five articles dealing with decisions by the Supreme Court as a collegial body and management of special funds.


“The first (thing) that we will do is probably ask for a dismissal of those articles wherein they stated that they will not present any evidence because that is not in effect equivalent to a dismissal since the impeachment charges will still be there, although they will not be presenting evidence,” Cuevas said in an ambush interview.

‘No difference’

Enrile said it was clear that in withdrawing the five articles, the prosecution deemed that the charges were “no longer part of the articles of impeachment and we will not vote on (them).”

He said formally dismissing the remaining articles would make “no difference” in the trial, since these had been dropped. “Unless I am reversed by the court, I will not allow anymore evidence to be presented,” he said.

But Cuevas sought more clarity.

“That was what was said in the actual hearing, but that does not settle the issue of whether they do not anymore form part of the impeachment complaint,” he said.


“To make things clear, they should be dismissed, since (prosecutors) would not present evidence anyway, so the court will be relieved of the burden of deciding on those (articles),” he added.

One concern earlier expressed by the defense was the possibility of the House of Representatives reviving the same five articles of impeachment against Corona after one year.

No double jeopardy

Enrile said the principle of “double jeopardy” did not apply in impeachment cases.

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“There is no double jeopardy in impeachment,” he said. “You can dismiss the charge because it is not properly formed, properly couched or it lacks additional substance, and if you complete it, you can refile (it). I do not see any obstacle in refiling it if they want to refile it, although I consider it impractical.”

TAGS: Congress, Government, Judiciary, Politics, PSBank, Renato Corona, Senate, Supreme Court

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