Was revocation of amnesty legal? Trillanes camp might ask SC to decide
MANILA, Philippines – Opposition Senator Antonio Trillanes IV's legal team said they are considering asking the Supreme Court (SC) to urgently resolve their pending petition on his amnesty revocation.
In a press briefing on Thursday, September 27, lawyer Rey Robles said that they have yet to discuss their next steps.
"May option naman na mag-file ng pleadings, asking the Supreme Court to act or to consider [to resolve the petition]. But 'yun nga ang dedesisyunan ng legal team ni senator," Robles said.
(There is an option to file pleadings, asking the Supreme Court to act or to consider to resolve the petition. But the legal team has yet to decide on that.)
In his 36-page petition filed before the SC, Trillanes argued that President Rodrigo Duterte has no legal basis to void the amnesty granted to him in 2011 via Proclamation No. 572.
Trillanes also requested for a temporary restraining order to block his arrest, but this was denied by the High Court. The SC, however, asked both parties to submit their comment.
Solicitor General Jose Calida submitted the government's comment on Monday, September 24, arguing that the amnesty be voided because it was not the President who signed it. Robles said they have yet to officially receive the comment.
Robles said filing a motion for reconsideration regarding the denied TRO "is not urgent," as both the High Court and their camp are holding on to the words of Duterte that "there will be no warrantless arrest."
Meanwhile, Robles also said that there was no "extreme urgency" to seek relief from the SC in the case of the rebellion charges he faced at the Makati Regional Trial Court Branch 150, because he was able to post bail.
The tough challenge is at the 2nd Makati court where Trillanes faces another plea by the justice department to issue an arrest warrant and a hold departure order for coup d'etat, which is non-bailable as of the moment.
"They (Branch 148) can deny or grant the motion [of the DOJ]. If they grant it, we will base it on the ground of the court. If we feel that there is grave abuse of discretion, we might consider elevating the case," Robles told reporters in a mix of English and Filipino.
Should Judge Andres Soriano grant the DOJ's plea, Robles said that Trillanes will really have to spend days in jail before they execute their next legal move.
Robles also explained that "it's the discretion" of the court to decide if there will be bail proceedings for the coup charges.
"It's the discretion of the court, but normally may bail hearings 'yan (there are bail hearings)," Robles said.
Branch 148 closed at 4:30 in the afternoon on Thursday, with no decisions issued by Soriano.
Regardless, Trillanes said on Thursday he was prepared for the worst, "We're living in an era where the worst happens, so you should expect [that]." – Rappler.com
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