The Makati City Regional Trial Court Branch 148 has wrapped up proceedings on the motion filed by the Department of Justice (DOJ) seeking the arrest of Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on charges of coup d’ etat for the 2003 Oakwood mutiny.
“…The factual issues as specified in the order dated September 28, 2018 and the issue on the ‘legality’ of Proclamation 572 based on the pleadings/motions filed by the parties–as they may bear upon the prosecution’s Urgent Ex-Parte Motion for Issuance of Hold Departure Order and Issuance of Alias Warrant of Arrest against Antonio Trillanes IV are now considered submitted for resolution,” Makati RTC Branch 148 Presiding Judge Andres Bartolome Soriano said in his order dated Oct. 11, 2018.
In his order, of the 17 exhibits or evidence submitted by the camp of Trillanes, the court has not admitted Exhibits 9 and 12 because they were not duly authenticated, presented and identified by any witness in court.
‘Exhibit 9’ is a printout of the official Facebook page of the Department of National Defense while ‘Exhibit 12′ is a printout of Trillanes’ throwback picture swearing in to the amnesty application he has submitted.
On the other hand, other evidence submitted by Trillanes’ camp have been admitted and will be considered in determining whether the court will grant the DOJ’s request to order Trillanes’ arrest and reopen the coup d’ etat case.
Among the evidence admitted by the court is Trillanes’ certificate of amnesty, the affidavits of Col. Josefa Berbigal, Honorio Azcueta, Dominador Rull and Emmanuel C. Tirador. Berbigal is the head of Ad Hoc Amnesty Committee Secretariat that received the amnesty application while Azcueta is a former Undersecretary of the Department of National Defense and head of the adhoc committee. Rull and Tirador were present when Trillanes submitted his amnesty application form and submitted photographs as proof.
The court also admitted Exhibit 4, the printed photograph of Trillanes’ application for amnesty. The court said it is admitted despite object from the DOJ because it is part of Rull’s testimony.
The court said “this is without prejudice to the determination of its probative value in due course.”
Other evidence include photographs submitted by Rull and Tirador as well as the memorandum creating the Ad Hoc Committee and the Secretariat. The court also admitted as evidence the blank application form for amnesty.
“It must be emphasized that the court admits some of the exhibits which may have a doubtful admissibility in the interest of prudence,” the court said.
Citing the case of Atienza vs. Board of Medicine (G.R. 177407), the court noted that “it is the safest policy to be liberal, not rejecting them on doubtful or technical grounds but admitting them unless plainly irrelevant, immaterial or incompetent.”