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SC officials to face charges if CJ does not resign—Gadon

By Gerry Baldo
and Benjamin B. Pulta

Officials of the Supreme Court are going to face criminal charges if Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno does not resign by March this year, the complainant in the impeachment case against the Chief Justice warned yesterday.
Lawyer Larry Gadon also disclosed that the Office of Solicitor General Jose Calida is going to file a quo warranto proceeding against Sereno with the aim of nullifying her appointment as chief justice.
In conjunction with the move of Calida, Gadon said that he will also ask President Duterte to nullify Sereno’s appointment.
“I will ask President Duterte to nullify her (Sereno) appointment because it is tainted with fraud,” Gadon said in a media forum in Quezon City yesterday.
“The chief justice was appointed without the proper requirements. This is a very wrong precedent,” Gadon added.
Gadon insisted that Sereno skirted the requirements of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) particularly the required submission of her statement of assets and liabilities (SALN) for the past ten years prior to her nomination to the SC.
Gadon said Sereno submitted only one SALN. Sereno’s camp said she submitted three.
Gadon said that he is not abandoning the impeachment case be filed at the House of Representatives.
“I am not abandoning it. This would be a simultaneous move, based on different grounds, whichever comes first,” he said.

The cases that he is planning to file are in connection with the purchase of the Toyota Land Cruiser, the hiring of an IT consultant, the delay in the release of survivorship benefits, and the use of the presidential villa at the Shangri-la in Boracay.
In the list of those who are going to be charged in court are: Sereno; retired Deputy Court Administrator Thelma C. Bahia; Atty. Ma. Carina M. Cunanan, assistant chief, Office of Administrative Services; Atty. Corazon G. Ferrer – Flores, chief, Fiscal Management and Budget Office; and Atty. Michael B. Ocampo, Court Attorney IV, Office of the Chief Justice.
In the case of the alleged illegal hiring of an information technology consultant, those who are going to be charged are: Sereno; Deputy Court Administrator Raul Bautista Villanueva; Cunanan; Ferrer – Flores; Atty. Ma. Lourdes E.B. Oliveros, staff head, Office of tbe CJ; Ocampo; and Helen Perez – Macasaet (the IT consultant).
On the issue of survivorship benefits, those who are going to be charged are: Sereno; Atty Anna-Li R. Papa – Gombio, Attorney IV, Office of the Chief Justice; and Atty. Czarina Encarnacion Samonte – Villanueva, judicial staff head, Office of the Chief Justice.
For thw alleged illegal use of the presidential villa at the Shangri-la in Boracay, those to be charged are: Sereno; Justice Zaldy V. Trespeses, former judicial staff head, Office of the Chief Justice; and Ferrer – Flores.
Sereno’ s camp, however, described the move as a firecracker that didn’t explode.
In a statement, lawyer Josa Deinla, one of Sereno’s spokespersons, said Atty. Gadon’s ultimatum to the Chief Justice and certain court officials is just another dud.
“Once again, the Chief Justice cannot be hostaged to bombastic threats that are built entirely on lies,” Deinla said.
“This latest stunt by Atty. Gadon, the main impeachment complainant, smacks of fear and desperation, and proves that he has completely lost faith in the impeachment proceeding in the House of Representatives,” Deinla added.
She noted that the past days “we have witnessed the high-handed efforts, forum shopping and resources behind this impeachment to force the Chief Justice to step down after several months of House hearings failed to produce a solid and convincing ground that would warrant her removal from office.”
Now, Chief Justice Sereno’s detractors are expanding their weak ouster move to professional civil servants who refuse to lie and toe the line of those wishing to see the Chief Justice unjustly and unfairly removed from the Supreme Court. This deserves nothing but condemnation for using them as political tools in the impeachment.
The Chief Justice has made it clear since the beginning of this well-orchestrated but pathetic telenovela masquerading as an impeachment proceeding, that she will not resign and will continue to dispense her faithfully sworn duty under the Constitution.
We reiterate that the Chief Justice is looking forward to defend herself in the Senate when it convenes as an impeachment trial court and where, hopefully, her basic and constitutional rights will be recognized and respected.

And SC case vs Sereno develops
A newsdpaper report yesterday said that the Supreme Court had, during a Tuesday hearing decided to have Sereno to comment on its order to Sereno and officials of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) to justify her eligibility for appointment to the top judicial post in 2012.
The STAR newspaper’s sources said the justices decided in session to require Sereno as well as regular members and officers of JBC during her application for the chief justice post to comment on the letter of the House of Representatives justice committee seeking “appropriate action” on the reported incomplete SALNs she had submitted to the council then.
This SC action was based on the two page letter from the House justice committee seeking answers from the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) throgh the High Court, which supervises tha JBC.
Sereno, JBC members Jose Mejia and Ma. Milagros Cayosa, former members retired justices Aurora Lagman and Regino Hermosisima Jr, JBC executive officer Annaliza Capacite and former chief of office of selection and nomination, now Judge Richard Pascual.
The report said in its two-page letter that the House asked the SC justice to take “appropriate action” on the preliminary finding in the impeachment proceedings that Sereno supposedly did not comply with the 10-year SALN requirement for her chief justice application.
Among the documents forwarded to the High Court were certifications issued by the University of the Philippines and Office of the Ombudsman showing that Sereno only filed SALNs in 2009, 2010 and 2011 prior to her appointment as chief justice.


  • Milan

    She is as thick faced as Aquino. They both can lie with a straight face as if they believe their lies. Aquino and Sereno are partners in the injustices committed against Hacienda Luisita farmers and their families.

    Milan Sunday, 25 February 2018 00:17 Comment Link
  • Okoy sa Kabo

    VOIDABLE! sereno's appointment to CJ post is invalid from the very beginning hence voidable.

    Just like the marriage of Sharon Cuneta and Gabby Conception, no matter how grand, it was annulled being invalid from the very beginning, wasn't it Kiko?

    Okoy sa Kabo Saturday, 24 February 2018 11:34 Comment Link
  • Boy Hen

    Let's take it a firecracker but if explode in your hands still hurts I don't know how Sereno can escape this the evidence speak and they cannot say that the is false.

    Boy Hen Friday, 23 February 2018 08:58 Comment Link
  • inocent

    There are already a hundred and more skeletons in the closet of Lourdes Sereno which are exposed yet she still maintain the mask of innocence. all these skeletons are already seen by the public not a handful so it is futile for her and lawyers to keep on standing with the onslaught of cases against her. If she still hangs on to her seat despite being unqualified to the position, she will be shamed as a de facto SC CJ, a punishment no normal human being will live for. Let Lourdes blame herself and PNoyvaxia for putting her in this situation.

    inocent Friday, 23 February 2018 02:38 Comment Link

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