Sunchamp owner sues Trillanes, seeks P5M
MANILA, Philippines–Businessman Antonio Tiu, who was accused by Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV of fronting for Vice President Jejomar Binay, on Wednesday filed a P5-million civil case against the lawmaker for his supposed defamatory statements in the media.
In a complaint filed by lawyer Czarina Quintanilla in the Quezon City Regional Trial Court, Tiu said his business reputation had been severely tarnished by Trillanes’ accusation as shown by the steep drop in stock prices of his listed companies.
Tiu is the executive chair of AgriNurture Inc. and president of Greenergy Inc. He also owns Sunchamp Real Estate Development Corp., registered owner of a 350-hectare farm in Batangas province that was allegedly owned by Binay.
Tiu said Trillanes’ statements accusing him of being a dummy were made outside the performance of his official duty as member of Congress.
The businessman cited a dzMM radio interview in which Trillanes said Tiu was the perfect cover for the “Hacienda Binay” project.
The senator was also quoted in an online Inquirer article saying, “The best call is to come clean and admit that he’s fronting for the Vice President.”
Before the statements, Tiu said Trillanes advocated his support to the Federation of Schools Sports Association of the Philippines, which he financed through AgriNurture.
Tiu said Trillanes’ statements were unjust, unlawful and unwarranted, causing him wounded feelings, mental anguish and sleepless nights.
Tiu asked the court to grant moral damages of P4 million, exemplary damages of P500,000 and attorney’s fees of P500,000.
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