Bongbong Marcos seeks charges vs Comelec, Smartmatic staff
The camp of defeated vice presidential bet Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is urging the Department of Justice to file criminal charges against Commission on Elections (Comelec) staff and Smartmatic officers for allegedly tampering with the results of the May 9 elections.
Marcos’ poll adviser, former Abakada Rep. Jonathan dela Cruz, filed a petition with the DOJ on Friday to overturn the Nov. 3 decision of the Office of the City Prosecutor of Manila dismissing the cyber-crime cases he filed against three Comelec IT experts and four Smartmatic officers led by Venezuelan Marlon Garcia.
In his 28-page petition, Dela Cruz said the OCP-Manila erroneously dismissed the cases when it failed to consider that prohibited acts under the Cybrecrime Prevention Act included “mala prohibita” (a conduct prohibited by law but not inherently evil) when it deemed the respondents as having acted with right or authority, and when it failed to appreciate the allegations in the complaint affidavit.
The respondents were charged for their unauthorized system change in the Transparency Server when they replaced “?” with “ñ” in the names of candidates while the transmission of votes was ongoing on the night of May 9, 2016.
Marcos lost by 263,000 votes to Vice President Leni Robredo. He claimed that he was cheated of 3 million votes.
“The act of ‘tweaking’ the script of the Transparency Server caused widespread anxiety and concern amongst the nation,” Dela Cruz said.
Dela Cruz said the respondents admitted making the unauthorized script change but the OCP-Manila ruled there was no evidence they did it in bad faith.
He said good or bad faith was immaterial because the authors of the law themselves said it was “enough that such acts are made without right or justifiable reason.”
The OCP-Manila argued there was “implied” right or authority to alter the script under the terms of the “Protocol of Escalation.”
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