MANILA, Philippines – Senator Antonio Trillanes IV has never retired and is back in active service as far as the Department of National Defense (DND) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is concerned.
DND spokesman Arsenio Andolong announced this in a press briefing on Tuesday, September 4, announcing the department's next steps after President Rodrigo Duterte revoked Trillanes' amnesty.
"He was reverted back to active duty," said Andolong.
He added that Trillanes would then have to face administrative and criminal charges in connection with the coup attempts against the Arroyo administration.
Opposition senator Trillanes was deemed retired from the Philippine Navy after he filed a certificate of candidacy for senator in 2007. Now he's back in service.
"It's because what released him from the service is the amnesty and that terminated his court martial and everything. So everything sprang from that," Robert Rubin, DND Internal Audit Service chief, explained after the briefing.
Trillanes was jailed for his leadership in the 2003 Oakwood mutiny and the 2007 Manila Peninsula siege, but was later granted amnesty by President Benigno Aquino III with the concurrence of Congress in 2011.
Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra, who has been assigned officer-in-charge of the country while Duterte and his delegation are in Israel, earlier said congressional concurrence is not needed because the grant of amnesty is “void ab initio.”
Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon said Proclamation 572 "has no basis" as it was premised on Trillanes' alleged failure to apply for amnesty, and that any a reopening of the criminal cases against him, which had been tried, would constitute "double jeopardy." – Rappler.com
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Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.