By Raïssa Robles
Two Associate Justices of the Supreme Court and noted constitutionalist Fr. Joaquin Bernas are among the witnesses named by the defense lawyers to testify in behalf of impeached Chief Justice Renato Corona.
Defense lawyers Jose M. Roy III and Dennis P. Manalo named Associate Justice Presbitero Velasco as the main witness who will counter the testimony of Justice Secretary Leila de Lima today and yesterday. De Lima yesterday justified to the court her defiance of the court’s Temporary Restraining Order (TRO), saying it would not have preserved the status quo – which is what TROs are supposed to do. De Lima said that in fact, it would have done irreparable harm by allowing former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo escape justice altogether.
To corroborate Velasco’s testimony, the defense named either “Justice Roberto Abad and/or Justice Arturo D. Brion” in a 29-page submission to the Senate Impeachment Court dated this January 31. The submission lists the witnesses and documentary evidence.
Part of the magistrates’ testimony will touch on what Justice Lourdes Sereno divulged in her dissenting opinion on the issuance of the TRO and on her revelations on how Supreme Court administrator and spokesman Midas Marquez misrepresented to media what the court had decided on in Arroyo’s TRO case.
If the justices testify, I wonder if this will create an opening for Justices Sereno and Antonio Carpio to voluntarily come forward in order to give their own version of court deliberations that have always been cloaked in secrecy.
Their testimony could also give the prosecution a chance to cross-examine the magistrates. Earlier, the senator-judges had turned down the prosec’s request to summon Velasco, Sereno and two other justices as witnesses.
Fr. Bernas will be used as an expert witness to expound “on the substantial issue of the WLO being subject to judicial review.”
In scanning the list submitted by the defense, I noted two other interesting things:
First, although Corona and his lawyers have repeatedly said that the Chief Justice would answer all questions about his wealth in due time, Corona is not listed as among those set to testify.
Corona, however “reserved” his right to submit additional evidence and call additional witnesses, including himself.
Second, on the charge that his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth did not reflect his true wealth, Corona seems to be concentrating on giving evidence about his various real properties. He gave a lengthy list of witnesses and documents on this matter.
However, Corona did not submit any witness or documentary evidence from any bank about his peso cash deposits.
I would hazard a guess that Corona intends to make the public believe that all that excess cash he has stashed in banks actually belongs to his wife’s Basa-Guidote Corporation. And based on the list of documents he intends to submit, this would indicate that he plans to show that Cristina Corona legitimately acquired 98% of Basa-Guidote.
The fact that the money allegedly owned by Basa-Guidote is segregated in certain deposit accounts would mean that the defense is still pursuing the “fruit of the poisonous tree” angle insofar as all other Corona cash deposits are concerned. This means, the defense intends to persuade the court that all other accounts not holding Basa-Guidote money should be totally ignored by the court because information about them was illegally obtained.
I’m eager to hear the creative reasons that the defense will come up with for their client Corona.
And if they’re all pro-bono, I wonder how their law firms are reporting their billable hours in their book of accounts.
[The defense list of witnesses and documents can be downloaded here.]
i personally do not know if credit will be given to Plaza Miranda or not nor is it divine intervention on the job. Father Bernas declared that he will not be testifying in the IC to avoid being identified to any of the parties. He must have realized that he is on the wrong side.
Cane Juice says
Is Blood thicker than Water.?
Cane Juice says
Is Blood thicker than Water.?
Or will the “Wind of Change” turn, again, a Fickle Mind.?
My quoute for the Day:
The media contributed to the frenzy… After her tantrum and after the impeachment trial was adjourned, media people started overloading Miriam with their microphones so the lady senator can further annotate her rage earlier against Atty. Aguirre’s “impudence.” They should have simply whipped her ass with those microphones instead of putting them infront of her mouth because in all certainty, whatever comes out in either anatomy would be as foul and as obnoxious as the other.
Cane Juice says
I love your metaphor.
You hit it “right on the butt”…!
cane juice — :)
“Two justices & Fr. Bernas to testify for CJ Corona
February 23, 2012 · 400 Comments
By Raïssa Robles” [ Accessed again today by the undersigned, March 4, 2012 Sunday, 7:03 a.m. ]
Dear Raïssa Robles:
Thanks for your informative writing, appreciate it very much.
Everyday I open your blog to find whether you have a new article, but to date you have not met my fond expectation of a new article from you.
Please meet my fond expectation.
Obet Mapanao says
Let us respect the dead always. Even if he has committed a big mistake, courtesy of CGMA, he paid the price for it with his own life to save the honor of his family most especially her mother. Just think about this. Maybe CGMA and former FG is still living in spite of their medical conditions. Siguro, God wanted them to pay the price on heart and go to jail for them to cleanse their mortal sins and be prepared for a better place in their afterlife.
johnny lin says
Normal person if he/she believes the behavior contributed to the death, the right approach is learn how to control emotion, change the attitude. She could temporary control her secondary mechanism, Panic Disorder, but not the primary factor, Narcissistic Personality Disorder, of her illness.
However with Miriam, since any form of threat to that primary superiority complex, immediately it triggers the secondary uncontrolled bizarre behavior. Expectedly, when there is no threat to her Narcissism, she acts calm and normal. Combined PD and NPD is Psychotic Bipolar Disorder
Madaling palitan ang ugali (secondary) ang pagmumukha mahirap(primary).
Matandang aso na si Miriam, difficult to teach her new tricks, he he he.
A dirty mouth discredits the cause that the heart vows to die for. It also renders the brain immaterial and irrelevant. ~ The Art of Impeachment War
Obet Mapanao says
To you my fellow Filipinos,
Our history will tell us that we have always been blessed when God’s Divine Intervention is much needed. So let us then, as a nation of God-Fearing people, start to once again use “Prayer Power” for the guidance and enlightenment of the Senator Judges to be more discerning on the facts and very objective in their judgement.
In the Impeachment Trial that the Laws of Men are not always fair and more in favor of the rich and powerful. So, when the Laws of Men can no longer provide, fair and blind justice to every Filipino, we can always put our fate on Divine Providence and Intervention. . Trust Him and submit to God will. The wrath of God will always catch up with him if not on earth but also in the after life.
Rowena Felizardo says
I agree, nothing is impossible with God. If God, truth and good is on our side, we Filipino people have nothing to fear. In His time, justice and truth will prevail.
Huwag nating iasang lahat sa Kanya
Anton Mendoza says
Miriam’s outbursts of anger are aided by the myth that says, “If you want to be real, you must be honest about your feelings. Do not hold back. Let the world know what you are feeling. To get rid of the pressure that is bulding up inside of you, go ahead and get it out.” This woman sucks, really sucks . An “emotional dumper.”. She backs up her truckload of emotional garbage and unloads such all over the walls of the IC. Shame on her!
Joseph Benigno says
Senator Santiago have learned a lot about the law but putting the prosecutors to shame by bursting with fury before the camera being shown before the world is a manifestation of a person who is not educated at all. Is she not aware that even if those prosecutors are Congressmen, acting as a prosecutor is not what they are doing in congress? What they are after is the presentation of evidence. That is what the population would like to know even if those evidences were not listed in order according to the good Senator. With the way she is acting at the IC, I am really puzzled who has a weird mind if the prosecutors or the good senator. But my barber believes that Senator Santiago is the one without any iota of doubt. The IC proceedings would go on smoothly if Senator Miriam will not completely change the atmostphere of the court. She might be thinking that the people are not aware of the way she is defending Corona together with Sen. Arroyo and Sen. Escudero. Senators, please allow the prosecutors to present all the evidences they have. The people are not so much about technicalities. They would like everything with regards to the case of the CJ to be presented. If the IC will disregard evidences because of technicalities, the people will continue to have doubt in their minds because something done by the accused was suppressed in the presentation because of technicalities. After all the evidences were presented and after those evidences were examined by the IC and will declare the CJ as innocent, at least the mind of the people will not be in doubt because of some evidences that were not presented because of technicalities.
I think we all should learn to accept Sen Santiago behavior , she thinks of herself differently, she is in a different dimension ,not an equal with ordinary earthling,,, after all nobody wants to start a fight with her, or even make a try on a healthy debate. Let us not mind her, let her talk her way, let us just wait what behavior she will show when she became an INTERNATIONAL JUDGE, I hope she would remain that way , debating and berating her co equal judges of the world. LET us all join in congratulating her of once in a lifetime achievements. MORE POWER senator…
Nakakahiya naman sa buong mundo kung sa ICC pa siya magkakalat ng disrespectful attitude. Better for her to remain in the senate forever (kung may mauuto pa siyang bumuto sa kanya).
Joseph Benigno says
Tama ang sinabi ni Rolly na nakakahiya sa buong mundo na si Sen. Santiago ang magkalat ng disrespectful attitude. She is a lady demanding respect but was so disrespectful herself.
when Miriam was still immigration head, we went to her office with some congress to plead for some foreigners arrested. Her secretary told us to come back another day because her boss is having a bad day she was throwing books around her office and we may get hurt from her outburst.