By Vann Marlo M. Villegas
A judge who led the shadow of Leilu M. De Lima banned himself, after three judges also acted only to be inhibited.
In a five-party order, Judge Lorna Navarro-Domingo of the Muntinlup Regional Trial Tribunal (RTC) 206 said her inhibition was "to show good faith to all parties involved (ed)".
"(T) The Court does not provide sufficient grounds to prevent the trial … (H) Notwithstanding that in order to demonstrate good faith to all the parties concerned and to be in the discretion of this Tribunal, the undersigned Presiding Judges themselves freed to try the case, "she said in a statement.
In a motion on 16 October on the ban on Ms. Domingo, Ms. De Lima said that the judge manifested "bias, bias and enmity" against her, as Ms. Domingo prematurely ruled against the senator's request for disqualification of the Witness without awaiting the Justice Department's response to her lady De Lima.
Ms. Domingo said in her order that "there is no mistake to correct", and she only repeated her previous order stating that Mrs. De Lima's response was "delayed by time."
She added that the Court "is not biased (in any way) by any of the parties in this case."
Ms. Domingo is the fourth judge of the RTC Muntinlupa, who is discouraged by the case of Ms. De Lima, after Judge Juanita Guerrero of Branch 204, Antonietta Pablo-Medina of Branch 276 and Mira Baiot-Kuiambao of Branch 203.
Another judge, Patria Manalastas-De Leon of Branch 206, retired on February 1 this year.
GUEVARRA, AGUIRRE CHARGED
In connection with developments, Senator Leila M. de Lima filed a criminal complaint against the Secretary of Justice Menard I with the Office of the Ombudsperson. Guevara and his predecessor Vitalijana N. Aguirre II for allegedly illegally accepting criminal offenses as state witnesses in the case against her.
A closed senator said the case against Mr. Aguirre came out of the house in connection with the alleged illegal trafficking of narcotics in the New Bilibid Prison (NBP), during which he presented 11 convicted forgeries as witnesses.
Ms. de Lima argued that the admission of a criminal offense convicted of crimes involving moral reconciliation within the framework of the Witness Protection, Security and Benefit Protection Program (VPSBP) violated Article 10 (f) of the Republic Law 6981, "the VPSB Act," Article 208. Revised Criminal Code and Sec. 3 (e) RA 3019, Anti-Corruption and Corruption Law.
"As a consequence of their acceptance as State witnesses under Article 10 of RA 6981, the aforementioned convicted criminals had immunity, although illegally, under Article 12 of the same law," the senator said in her appeal – lien.
She also said that the immunity results in the resolution of cases against those convicted by the Ministry of Justice (DOJ).
The current secretary also faces similar complaints about the continuation of illegal reception of criminals within the VPSBP, which gives them "inadequate benefits".
"Secretary Guevarra also did not accuse the aforementioned convicted criminals for illegal trafficking in narcotics despite their unequivocal acceptances and recognition under oath," she said.
"The failure to provide the necessary information is a flagrant violation of the duty by the Secretary." – with Charmaine A. Tadalan