Exclusive by Raïssa Robles
Today, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre said Senator Leila de Lima could be charged with immorality and “concubinage” for having an affair with Ronnie Dayan.
A Philippine Daily Inquirer report stated Aguirre as saying that “De Lima is liable for concubinage for having an affair with a married man, and not adultery, which applies to a man for having an affair with a married woman.”
It’s the other way around, Sir. Only men can be charged with concubinage, meaning, they can only be charged if they house their lovers for an extended period of time. But it was not Ronnie Dayan who had housed De Lima. It was De Lima who had housed Dayan. So Dayan cannot be charged with concubinage. And since he cannot be charged with concubinage, De Lima cannot also be charged as Dayan’s “concubine”.
But a woman can be charged with adultery. Meaning, if a married woman happens to be seen coming out of a hotel room just once the husband could cite that as evidence that she just committed adultery.
UPDATE: According to Daisy Catherine Mandap, a lawyer, De Lima’s marriage has been annulled so she is single and unmarried.
However, only the aggrieved spouse of De Lima can charge her with adultery.
As for the wife of Ronnie Dayan, since Dayan did not commit concubinage, Dayan’s wife cannot charge him with that crime. But she could perhaps charge Ronnie Dayan and De Lima with adultery.
Our Penal Code is THAT screwed up when it comes to crimes like these. But congressmen, who are mostly men, do not want to amend it because it is in their favor.
I have copied and pasted the pertinent sections of the Penal Code below:
CRIMES AGAINST CHASTITY
ADULTERY AND CONCUBINAGE
Art. 333. Who are guilty of adultery. — Adultery is committed by any married woman who shall have sexual intercourse with a man not her husband and by the man who has carnal knowledge of her knowing her to be married, even if the marriage be subsequently declared void.
Adultery shall be punished by prision correccional in its medium and maximum periods.
If the person guilty of adultery committed this offense while being abandoned without justification by the offended spouse, the penalty next lower in degree than that provided in the next preceding paragraph shall be imposed.
Art. 334. Concubinage. — Any husband who shall keep a mistress in the conjugal dwelling, or shall have sexual intercourse, under scandalous circumstances, with a woman who is not his wife, or shall cohabit with her in any other place, shall be punished by prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods.
The concubine shall suffer the penalty of destierro.
Now, obstruction of justice could be an altogether different charge against De Lima.
However, all these raises the question why Justice Aguirre did not say that now, Senator De Lima can be charged with violating the Dangerous Drugs Act. Which is the entire point of all these investigations.