Pasay prosecutor OKs inciting to sedition case vs Trillanes
The Pasay City Prosecutor’s Office filed before the Metropolitan Trial Court inciting to sedition case against Senator Antonio Trillanes IV.
In a resolution made public Thursday, the filing of the case (Article 142 of the Revised Penal Code) was signed by Senior Assistant City Prosecutor Joahna A. Gabatino-Lim and approved by OIC City Prosecutor Benjamin B. Lanto.
The case stemmed when Trillanes, in a privilege speech, mentioned that the military might use an M60 machine gun against President Rodrigo Duterte for his alleged hidden wealth.
WHAT WENT BEFORE: Trillanes vs Duterte
“Sinabi ni Mr. Duterte bago lang, na pagka daw may nakitang 40 milyon pesos siya, doon sa kanyang accounts eh pwede daw syang barilin. Pwede daw syang barilin at patayin, sinabi niya ito sa mga sundalo,” Trillanes said in his speech, which was quoted in the resolution.
“Ngayon, doon sa 40 milyon to 50 milyon, 21 times pumasok, ano to ha, credits ito at o kaya ay deposits, 21 times pumasok sa accounts ni Mr. Duterte kada anim na buwan…So ito ngayon sagot, kung makikita ‘to ng mga sundalo, M60 machine gun ang gagamitin sayo. Marami-rami to, mauubos magazine kung P40 million hinahanap mo, Mr. Duterte,” Trillanes said.
IN THE KNOW: Crime of sedition
Inciting to sedition is filed against a person who agitates others to the execution of any of the acts of rebellion and his inciting is done by means of speeches, proclamation, writings, emblems or representations tending to the same end. But the offender does not take arms or is not in open hostility against the government.
In this case, the prosecutor said “analysis of the contents of the speech and its intention and the following publication of which on YouTube, staging a rally, speeches and various statements or press releases led this Office to believe that respondent’s intent or seek is to sow the seeds of sedition on the mind of the people.”
As proof, the prosecutor noted that after Trillanes’ speech, a petition-signing drive campaign was staged to pressure President Rodrigo Duterte to open his financial records.
“Therefore, probable cause exists against respondent for violation of Article 142 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended,” the resolution stated.
In the same resolution, the prosecutor dismissed the complaint for conspiracy and proposal to commit coup d’ etat under Article 136 of the RPC.
“The charge for conspiracy and proposal to commit coup d’ etat cannot prosper. The acts complained of do not show that respondent [Trillanes] proposes to other persons the commission of the crime of coup d’ etat,” read the resolution.
“The utterances he made may have been suggestive to fall within the scope of inciting to sedition but it is not sufficient to engender a well-founded belief that he directly proposes to others a swift attack accompanied by violence, intimidation, threat, strategy or stealth against the government,” the resolution added.
The case has been raffled off to Pasay City MeTC Branch 45. A bail of P12,000 has been recommended for his temporary liberty./je
WHAT WENT BEFORE: Trillanes accuses Duterte of having P227-M in bank account
WHAT WENT BEFORE: Oakwood Mutiny
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