CA dismisses Sulpicio Lines’ petition to reverse Marina’s ban on firm’s passenger vessel operation

Published June 18, 2018, 4:57 PM

by AJ Siytangco


By Rey Panaligan

For failure to exhaust administrative remedies, the Court of Appeals (CA) has dismissed the petition of Sulpicio Lines Inc. (SLI) to reverse a Maritime Industry Authority (Marina) decision that banned the firm from operating passenger vessels.

The CA, through Associate Justice Pablito Perez, ruled that SLI, now known as Philippine Span Asia Carrier Corporation, should have filed first with the Office of the President an appeal to challenge the 2015 Marina decision.

Court of Appeals
(KJ Rosales | Manila Bulletin file photo)

“SLI’s failure to appeal to the Office of the President before filing the instant petition before this Court is a premature invocation of the Court’s intervention thus denies SLI a cause of action for judicial relief. Direct recourse to this Court, when administrative remedies are still available for SLI, is a ground for the dismissal of the petition,” the CA ruled.

Case records showed that the administrative complaint about the cancellation of SLI’s certificate of public conveyance (CPC) was filed by the relatives of the victims of the ill-fated M/V Princess of the Stars, which tipped off near the coast of Sibuyan island in Romblon in 2008 at the height of a typhoon.

More than 200 persons died and about 500 others were declared missing as a result of the incident.

In its decision, Marina ruled that 11 SLI vessels were banned from engaging in the transport of passengers and can operate only as cargo vessels.

Marina also allowed the filing of separate civil and criminal charges against SLI in connection with the tragedy.

in Marikina City following a car chase that started from San Pedro, Laguna where he has been hiding with his live-in partner.

On the other hand, the Supreme Court (SC) has dismissed in April Dumayas for gross ignorance of the law and gross misconduct for having downgraded the charges against Datu and Dela Paz from murder to homicide which carries lesser penalties.