Lawyer’s fit of fury draws MPD’s ire
This must be defense lawyering taken to the extreme.
The Manila Police District (MPD) sued a lawyer, her partner and her secretary on Wednesday over the commotion the lawyer caused the previous night at the MPD headquarters.
Clarissa “Claire’’ Castro, a lawyer who also hosts a legal advice program on dzMM, spent Tuesday night in detention along with the others after making a scene where she angrily questioned the warrantless arrest of her client, Jackson Chua Jr.
Chua was earlier arrested by the MPD after his ex-girlfriend alleged that he had abducted their 6-year-old son. According to the complainant, Ricamarie Taylor, Chua agreed to release the minor only if she would agree to have sex.
Around 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, six MPD members conducted an entrapment operation against the 31-year-old Chua at SM San Lazaro mall. The MPD Women and Children’s Desk, which acted on Taylor’s complaints, had him booked for abduction, illegal detention, resisting arrest and violating the law on violence against women and children.
About an hour and a half later, a furious Castro arrived at the MPD and questioned the legality of Chua’s arrest. Castro was accompanied by her partner Charlton Seechung and secretary Jonalyn Montoya.
In the presence of several officers and reporters, the lawyer began shouting and pushing some policemen in a bid to get Chua out of the MPD custody.
“There was no warrant, sir! [My client was] dragged from SM Mall yet there was no complaint! He was not doing anything at the mall that could justify his arrest,” she was heard saying in Filipino.
She insisted that her client was merely framed by Taylor, a flight attendant, who had arranged a meeting at the mall to entrap him
with MPD’s help.
A heated exchange ensued between Castro and PO3 Marlyn Remetio, the investigator assigned to Chua’s case, with the policewoman berating the lawyer for her aggression and outburst.
Remetio sought the help of fellow policemen to pacify Castro. Supt. Dennis Wagas, MPD legal division chief, later arrived to explain to Castro why she, too, was being placed under arrest.
Castro, Seechung and Montoya underwent inquest proceedings on Wednesday morning for slander, direct assault and obstruction of justice; and Chua for the complaints filed by Taylor. They were all released later.
According to Remetio, Seechung and Montoya were sued as “accessories” to what Castro did at the MPD.
“She made a scene and insulted a police officer,’’ Remetio said of the lawyer. “We are ready to face any countercharge she will file. If we allow ourselves to be intimidated by such actions, then nothing will happen with our law enforcement.’’
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