Cop’s libel raps hound 2 Tulfos
Brothers Raffy and Erwin Tulfo are facing libel charges in the Quezon City Regional Trial Court for calling a policeman a gun-wielding, water-stealing thief on their TV5 program in 2011.
The tough-talking brothers, who together with sibling Ben form the show’s titular “T3,” were charged in the sala of Judge Eleuterio Bathan of QC RTC Branch 92, after the city prosecutor’s office found probable cause to indict the respondents.
The complaint was filed by SPO3 Abubakhar Maglangit, who said the brothers maligned him in the Nov. 19, 2011, episode of T3. The policeman alleged that his picture was shown on the program, with the name “SPO2 Henry Maglangit” below it, as the brothers insulted him on national TV.
Raffy Tulfo allegedly called him a shameless, thieving policeman who went around pointing his gun to scare off people (“Pulis na makapal ang mukha. Kawatan na pulis at nanutok pa ng baril.”)
Erwin, meanwhile, allegedly added: “Pulis nagnanakaw ng tubig, galit pa pag nasita. (A cop who steals water; he even had the gall to be angry when caught and censured).”
Maglangit complained that the brothers’ remarks had affected his daughter who was then a minor.
In a two-page resolution, assistant city prosecutor Ferdinand Baylon explained: “This is clearly an imputation of a crime and had the effect of besmirching the reputation of the complainant.”
“The truthfulness of the allegation (against the complainant) is immaterial,” Baylon said.
Maglangit initially included field researcher Mark Prindian and segment producer Melvin Navarro in his complaint, saying their failure to verify the Tulfo brothers’ allegations also made them liable.
But Baylon cleared Pridian and Navarro, saying their participation in the issuance of the brothers’ statements on air was not clearly established.
Reached for comment, TV5 corporate communications head Peachy Vibal Guioguio said, “We have not received the information from the fiscal’s office yet, so we cannot issue any statement.”
The “T3” hosts are the younger siblings of Inquirer columnist Ramon Tulfo.