Makati court denies Trillanes’ appeal

Published January 7, 2019, 5:46 PM

by AJ Siytangco

By Rey Panaligan

The Makati City regional trial court (RTC) has denied the appeal of Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV to dismiss the rebellion case filed against him in connection with the 2007 Manila Peninsula siege.

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV (Mark Balmores / MANILA BULLETIN)
Senator Antonio Trillanes IV
(Mark Balmores / MANILA BULLETIN)

This means that Trillanes will stand trial on the rebellion case that was, in effect, revived by President Duterte last year through Proclamation No. 572 which voided the senator’s amnesty.

Only the Court of Appeals (CA) or the Supreme Court (SC) can stop the trial.

In an order received by the Department of Justice (DOJ) on Monday (January 7), Judge Elmo Alameda of RTC Branch 150 also affirmed the arrest order and the issuance of a hold departure order against Trillanes.

Alameda denied Trillanes’ motion for reconsideration as he stood pat on his findings in September that the senator failed to prove his compliance with the minimum requirement when he applied for amnesty during the previous administration.

The six-page order issued by Judge Alameda stated:

“Unfortunately, Sen. Trillanes failed to prove that the original of the alleged application form exists. Sen. Trillanes even failed to explain his failure to locate or find the copy thereof.

“Since the existence of the fact of his admission of guilty of the crime’ he committed, the substitutionary evidence presented by Sen. Trillanes is considered hearsay evidence and cannot be admitted as evidence to prove compliance with the minimum requirement set forth in Proclamation No. 75 (Amnesty Grant).”

Judge Alameda also reiterated that “Sen. Trillanes was not able to prove through testimonial and documentary evidence that he filed his application for amnesty nor expressly admitted his guilt in the application form for the crime he committed during the Manila Peninsula incident which are the minimum requirement set forth under Proclamation No. 75.”

Earlier, Trillanes had posted bail of P200,000 before RTC Branch 150 and was granted temporary liberty.

The same court allowed him to travel abroad.

The DOJ had also filed a motion before Makati RTC Branch 148 to revive the coup d’etat case against Trillanes in connection with the 2003 Oakwood mutiny.

Judge Andres Soriano of Brancyh 148 rejected the DOJ’s motion and ruled that the case had already been dismissed and terminated.

However, in Soriano’s ruling in October, he upheld the constitutionality of Proclamation No. 572 which voided Trillanes’ amnesty on both the coup d’etat and rebellion cases.

Trillanes challenged the validity of Proclamation No. 572 before the SC.

But the SC did not grant his plea for a temporary restraining order (TRO) that would have stopped the implementation of the proclamation. His petition is still pending resolution.