MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Five individuals are vying to become the new Supreme Court Chief Justice.
The High Court’s Public Information Office on Thursday, July 26, tweeted that the applicants include 4 SC Associate Justices and one Regional Trial Court judge. The period for nominations and applications ended today.
One from this list will fill in the position vacated by ousted chief justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.
Below is the list and background of each applicant ranked according to seniority or based on their appointment to the High Court.
SUPREME COURT ASSOCIATE JUSTICE TERESITA LEONARDO DE CASTRO
- Appointed to the Supreme Court on December 4, 2007 by Gloria Macapagal Arroyo
- Became Sandiganbayan presiding justice in 2004
- Appointed Department of Justice state counsel I in 1978
- Rejoined Judiciary as Sandiganbayan associate justice in 1997
- Began career in public service in 1973 as law clerk in the Office of the Clerk of Court
- Served as part of the technical staff of chief justice Fred Ruiz Castro
- Obtained law degree from the University of the Philippines
- She has consistently locked horns with ousted CJ Sereno, culminating with her speaking during the impeachment hearings at the House of Representatives
- Will retire in October 2018
SUPREME COURT ASSOCIATE JUSTICE DIOSDADO PERALTA
- Appointed SC Associate Justice on January 13, 2009 by Arroyo
- Appointed Sandiganbayan associate justice in 2002 and became presiding justice in 2008
- Member of the Sandiganbayan Special Division that convicted former president Joseph Estrada of plunder
- Appointed judge in 1992 to the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 95 – the designated Special Criminal Court on heinous crimes and eventually drugs cases
- Obtained law degree from University of Santo Tomas
- Will retire in March 2022
SUPREME COURT ASSOCIATE JUSTICE LUCAS BERSAMIN
- Appointed SC Associate Justice on April 2, 2009 by Arroyo
- Appointed CA associate justice in 2003
- Prior to the CA, served since 1986 as Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 96 presiding judge
- Involved in private practice from 1974 until 1986
- Taught at the Ateneo Law School, the University of the East College of Law, and the University of Santo Tomas
- Obtained law degree from the University of the East
- Placed 9th in the 1973 Bar Exams
- Will retire in October 2019
SUPREME COURT ASSOCIATE JUSTICE ANDRES REYES JR
- Appointed SC Associate Justice on July 13, 2017 by President Rodrigo Duterte
- Appointed CA associate justice in 1999 and became presiding judge in 2010
- Appointed Makati Metropolitan Trial Court judge in 1987
- Appointed San Mateo, Rizal Metropolitan Trial Court judge in 1990
- Worked at the Office of the Ombudsman after law school
- Obtained law degree from the Ateneo Law School
- Fraternity brother of former speaker Pantaleon Alvarez
- Nominated in 2014 to replace outgoing Supreme Court associate justice Roberto Abad
- Grandson of former SC justice Alex Reyes and son of former CA presiding justice Andres Reyes Sr
- According to a Newsbreak report, Reyes was close to Arroyo’s younger brother Diosdado “Buboy” Macapagal Jr, being batchmates at La Salle Green Hills
- Will retire in May 2020
JUDGE VIRGINIA TEJANO-ANG
- Presiding judge of Davao del Norte Regional Trial Court Branch 1
- In 2014, she issued a warrant of arrest against the suspect in the killing of radio broadcaster Rogelio “Tata” Butalid
- Retirement date unknown
– with reports from Lian Buan/Rappler.com
Editor’s Note: In an earlier version of this story, we reported that SC Associate Justice Teresita Leonardo De Castro was appointed Court of Appeals associate justice in 1997. She rejoined the Judiciary as Sandiganbayan associate justice that year. We regret the error and have made the necessary correction.
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