CA junks Bantag’s petition for dismissal of murder rap

CA junks Bantag’s petition for dismissal of murder rap

/ 04:50 AM June 26, 2024

Ex-BuCor chief Gerald Bantag has "never been a member" of the police force, the PNP says

Fugitive and former Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) Director General Gerald Bantag. —Inquirer files

MANILA, Philippines — The Court of Appeals (CA) has dismissed the petition filed by fugitive and former Bureau of Corrections chief Gerald Bantag to nullify the murder charge filed against him over the death of radio broadcaster Percival Mabasa.

In a four-page resolution issued on June 19, the appellate court’s Second Division summarily dismissed Bantag’s petition for certiorari, which sought to challenge the November 2023 order of the Las Piñas City Regional Trial Court Branch 254 denying his motion to quash the information and warrant of arrest against him, as well as its subsequent order denying his motion for reconsideration.


A motion to quash information is intended to assail the validity of the prosecution’s criminal complaint or information filed against an accused.


READ: Arrest of ex-BuCor chief Bantag a matter of time, needs patience – DOJ

In dismissing the petition, the appellate court said Bantag failed to follow procedural rules on the filing of a petition for certiorari because he did not secure the conformity of the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG), as required for criminal cases.


The court also cited the Supreme Court’s 2022 ruling on Austria vs AAA, which states that in any criminal case or proceeding, only the OSG is allowed to bring or defend actions on behalf of the state before the high court or the appellate court.

“The rationale behind this rule is that in a criminal case, the state is the party affected by the dismissal of the criminal action and not the private complainant,” the high court had said.

The appellate court also noted that in the Manual for Prosecutors, all requests to file certiorari petitions should be first coursed through the Office of the Prosecutor General for evaluation and approval prior to endorsement to the OSG.

Mabasa, who was also known as Percy Lapid, was shot dead in Las Piñas City on Oct. 3, 2022.

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TAGS: Court of Appeals, Gerald Bantag, Percy Lapid

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