Corona lawyer: Don’t prejudge, avoid ‘trial by publicity’
Expressing grief at the passing of former Chief Justice Renato Corona, lawyer Karen Jimeno on Friday called on Filipinos to respect the rule of law and avoid prejudging people based on “trial by publicity.”
“I think a lot of people don’t really know him personally, they know of him because of the impeachment. So, what I want people to know is that whatever it is, whatever prejudgments that (they’ve) developed in the impeachment trial, try to set that aside when thinking of Chief Justice Corona as a person,” Jimeno told INQUIRER.net in an interview after Smartmatic executives spoke at the Inquirer Multimedia Forum.
Jimeno was part of Corona’s defense team, serving as its spokesperson during the impeachment trial of the chief magistrate.
Corona succumbed to cardiac arrest at 1:48 a.m. today.
Jimeno, who serves as the voter’s education head of Smartmatic, said Corona was an intelligent person, “that’s why he made it to the Supreme Court as a justice and later on as a Chief Justice.”
She said the experience of Corona and his family should serve as a lesson to practice due process rights.
“I think what his experience taught us is that we should not prejudge people based on trial by publicity; we should be very respectful of the rule of law and due process rights, and I think what we learned from here is that at the end of the day, what matters is that we’re able to uphold our institution, in this case the Supreme Court, and then later on regardless of our differences, learn to respect people,” she said.
Jimeno said she was not aware that Corona had a serious health condition, except for his diabetes.
She said she would personally condole with the Corona family, adding that she and the rest of the defense team regularly met with the family over dinner.
“It’s very sad because we didn’t get to say goodbye to him properly before he died. One of the things that we also regret is not being able to see him at least in good health before he passed away,” she said. With Gwen Stephanie Bumanglag/RC
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.