Lagman says issuance of warrant vs Imelda a matter of course

Published November 14, 2018, 6:12 PM

by Roel Tibay

By Ben Rosario

Veteran opposition Rep. Edcel Lagman on Wednesday disagreed with the Sandiganbayan decision not to issue in the meantime a warrant for the arrest of former first lady and now Ilocos Norte Rep. Imelda Romualdez Marcos, saying that the arrest is a “matter of course.”

Albay 1st district Rep. Edcel Lagman (FEDERICO CRUZ / MANILA BULLETIN)
Edcel Lagman

Reacting to the same issue, however, Minority Leader and Quezon Rep. Danilo Suarez said critics of the Marcos family should be contented in the fact that Rep. Marcos has been convicted of graft charges after over three decades of prosecution.

“I agree with the position of former Senator Rene SAguisag who said that it is shameful enough that you were convicted of the crime. I believe there’s no longer any need to incarcerate the former first lady who is now 89,” Suarez told a press conference yesterday.

Senior Deputy Minority Leader and Buhay Partylist Rep. Lito Atienza backed Suarez, pointing out that a conviction is “already a victory” for those who believed the Marcoses committed graft and plunder during their time.

“If (Sen. Juan Ponce) Enrile can be released because of old age and failing health, why deny the same treatment to Mrs. Marcos?” he asked.

For his part, Ako Bicol Partylist Rep. Alfredo Garbin said there is no law in the country that prohibits the state from carrying out the prison sentence of a person convicted of a crime.

However, Garbin said that courts usually have the discretion on whether or not to grant appeals for exemption from prison out of humanitarian reasons.

In a press statement, Lagman said that since the Sandiganbayan has already forfeited the bail bond of Marcos, the issuance of a warrant of arrest against Marcos “is a matter of course.”

“The forfeiture of Marcos’ bail bond quashed her temporary liberty and justifies her arrest and detention pending the restoration of her bail bond or her posting of a new one subject to the discretion of the Sandiganbayan” said Lagman.