Will the Senator-Judges convict a man who interprets the law the same way they do?

Closing remarks day today for both camps! The court session today in the impeachment trial of Chief Justice Renato Corona brought a few things to light: (1) how utterly outclassed the prosecution lawyers are by those in the defense team, (2) how thin on substance the speech made by no less than the leader of the prosecution team, Niel Tupas Jr, was, and (3) how much gall Representative Rodolfo Fariñas exhibited on national television defending the prosecution case considering he declined to sign the very impeachment complaint (which he described as “badly written”) upon which this trial is premised.

So good was the defense presentation of their submitted position that Dean Tony La Viña was moved to tweet “After listening to closing arguments, I have to admit that the defense was overall more convincing, consistent and disciplined.” We will recall that La Viña who is mentor to caught-lying-under-oath star witness Harvey Keh had earlier been critical of how Corona, in his personal appearance in court last week, failed to “live up to the demands of that rigor and responsibility”.

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But most notable of all was the participation of House of Representatives Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte in the closing presentations of the prosecution camp. Unfortunately for him, however, it was quite obvious throughout his speech that he did not have much to work with. At no other time in the course of this trial did the lack of substance of the prosecution case make itself more evident and it is quite unfortunate for the Speaker of the House that he’d be the face of this lack of substance today.

Belmonte, of course, was in the unfortunate position of not having any choice but to stand up for his House. No less than 188 of his colleagues in his chamber signed the impeachment complaint that Fariñas, a key member of the prosecution team, denounced as worth less than the paper it was printed on. Lest we forget, this constituted an unprecedented low in the annals of what is quite aptly called the Lower House recalling the manner with which no less than President Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino III himself reportedly lent a direct hand in the fast tracking of the House representatives’ signing of the articles of impeachment. Belmonte himself revealed then how “a ‘furious’ President Aquino wanted a ‘fast’ impeachment against Corona after he and seven other Arroyo appointees had issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) to block the travel ban against Arroyo.”

Suffice to say, the House of Representatives was severely diminished by Corona’s impeachment trial and is, as such, one of its biggest victims. Now, after all that, Belmonte needs to be seen to be the leader of the House of Representatives that his position description says he is. Too late the hero. Seems like it was really BS Aquino who acted as House Speaker that time — wait, no, perhaps it was Uncle Peping…

That said with regard to Belmonte’s notable appearance, what in turn was really notable to the media and, most likely, to the viewing public was defense counsel Dennis Manalo’s brilliant extemporaneous presentation focusing on the prosecution camp’s decision to waive their right to cross-examine Corona when he showed up in person last Friday. As such the prosecution Manalo asserts failed to establish the soundness of their case against Corona and instead rests on the hearsay evidence presented by all the witnesses presented by both sides prior to Corona’s appearance. Manalo’s presentation together with the steely logical rigour applied by his fellow counsel Eduardo de los Angeles who enumerated each count in the shameful and disrespectful way the prosecution team presented their case to the court over the last 40-odd days followed by lead counsel Serafin Cuevas’s closing remarks reiterating the absolute clarity of the law on the handful of matters relevant to Corona’s case were all succinct and had direction. The contrast with Tupas’s sad waffling in the opening minutes of today’s session and Belmonte’s head-scratcher of a presentation owing to a limited foundation to stand his message upon was stark.

But the prosecution has been on a fishing expedition all this time and Corona was ultimately their biggest catch, providing in his own testimony the evidence that the prosecution could not provide throughout the days prior to his appearance. Now the decision to acquit or convict is now squarely in the hands of the Senator-Judges. Court presiding officer Juan Ponce Enrile gave a hint of what weighs heavily on his vote, highlighting that the law does not in any way penalise depositors who opt to disclose assets covered by current bank secrecy laws. Enrile seems to have been implying that Corona is culpable for opting to misrepresent his Statement of Assets Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) under the principle of what sets apart mere fault or culpa and intent to defraud or deceive or dolus. Whereas the defense asserts that Corona’s opting to refrain from declaring his dollar accounts in his SALN was an intellectual interpretation — which can be construed as a fault in understanding — of the law, Enrile hints that he sees fault in such an action in terms of Corona’s possible intent — just short of him asserting intent to be deceitful on Corona’s part.

Either way, as de los Angeles had pointed out in his presentation, there is hardly any record of a government official voluntarily opting to declare in their SALN what the law stipulates is covered by current bank secrecy laws. It comes down to personal principle — whether judges who themselves are likely to be hiding something of their own will convict a person who interpreted the law and applied intent to doing so in the same way they did.

41 Replies to “Will the Senator-Judges convict a man who interprets the law the same way they do?”

  1. Political considerations (because this is, after all, a political exercise) suggest an acquittal, with perhaps a face-saving scolding of the Chief Justice.

  2. I agree BenK…I do see an acquittal with a strong reprimand as well.

    As always excellent writing Benigs…I will share this.

  3. Yep. Acquittal. 😀
    But the hounding from the media and noytards will never stop. The battle may be nearing its finish, but the WAR has just begun.

  4. I don’t know why some see an acquittal as the obvious result. The legal war was won by the defense, but the glitz competition may have been won by the prosecution.

    The “walk out”, the very nature of the defense’s matter-of-fact just-the-facts-ma’am style, the lack of show biz pizzazz…a bit drab, entertainment-wise. The defense won’t win any cash prizes for their (tip of hat to Benign0) ocho-ocho dancing…or lack thereof.

    Meanwhile, the prosecution owned the airwaves during this whole production.

    I don’t trust the senators. Mass appeal over legal rigor may well be the yardstick for their measurements.

    For me, the wild card is the reaction of each senator to the idea of “voluntary” opening of all financial info. If one is hiding stuff, do they think acquittal will somehow get them off the hook or that conviction will bury the topic?

    The biggest political threat out there right now is that the general public might start demanding “open books” from public officials. Those presently in office are the most exposed. Re-electionists are in the worst position.

    So the question may be: Which verdict is more likely to deflect further pressure on financial transparency? That may be the winner right there…..

    Ladies and Gentlemen, please place your bets…..

    1. An acquittal deflects further pressure on financial transparency, that was sort of my point. And, a vote for a conviction is a vote on trust that N/A can keep the wolves off, which is not at all certain now, and especially not for any reelectionist Senators. An obvious exception to that, though, is Trillanes — he’s an idiot.

      Had this trial happened a year, year-and-a-half ago it might be a different story. But now? No way. Not when Corona himself has opened Pandora’s box with his waiver (regardless of what’s done or not with it), not when Binay is gearing up a strong move against N/A. Only the real die-hards will overlook the political risk and toe the Palace line.

      1. I believe so too. It’s now a question of how much self-interest and fear of the prospect of a powerful Malacanang will be a factor in the manner with which the Senators will vote.

        Indeed, idiots like Trillanes who actually believe enough in their own fantasies to launch rebellions will probably vote “according to their hearts”. But from what I’ve seen over the course of the 40 days is that many of the senators, including Tito Sotto, are actually quite intelligent — which means they are likely to vote with a brain calibrated well enough understand the broader implications of a conviction and a president and cadre of henchmen emboldened to continue their purge.

        Noynoy has 4 more years in his term — enough time to lay waste to those who oppose the interests of Uncle Peping.

  5. It is funny how Filipinos are more interested in the debates of the trial rather than the main issue that if CJ Corona is fit and credible enough to be Chief of Justice. Whether the prosecution presentation is less attractive than the defense. What matters is the welfare and integrity of the Justice System in the Philippines. Did he compromised the position as Chief of Justice. To me this whole trial is all about that. Even medically, if he had a heart bypass, I see his appointment questionable. He must be fit and able to do the job. His political maneuvering during the trial in working the radio and press is not a fitting behavior of Chief of Justice. Legal issues are addressed not by politics but driven by the constitution and the law of the land. The chief of Justice does not need to be popular. He is needed to be stern, decisive with unquestionable character. Funny, can you find one in the Philippines?

  6. @ BenignO

    “After listening to closing arguments, I have to admit that the defense was overall more convincing, consistent and disciplined.”

    Maybe. But the more important response is the answer to this relevant question – IS CORONA CONVINCING?

    After all the evidences presented, offered and admitted to the court by the prosecution and defense, after all the publicity stunts of both camps, and after all the COMEDY OF ERRORS by the prosecution and defense counsels, the GRANDSTANDING of (some) senator-judges, and the DRAMAS of the respondent, WILL THE IMPEACHMENT COURT DELIVER A CONVICTION OR ACQUITTAL?

    My fearless forecast – Considering it’s EASIER to achieve 1/3 vote than 2/3, he will be acquitted. But it doesn’t mean he’s faultless. 🙂

  7. As much as I agree with your sentiments, I can’t help but to think that it would be rather difficult for me to think that one would demand justice by breaking the law themselves. The prosecution team did just that.

    And yet, people keep telling people that the integrity of the the Chief Justice here is the one being tested, and that all other things must be put aside. There is something really wrong with that kind of notion, now that just about everything in this impeachment trial seems to be a circus, and by that I mean public distrust may have risen to new and dangerous heights.

    I guess it’s a matter of choosing the lesser of two evils. Now that I’ve said it, I think it DOES matter how attractive and “reasonable” the explanations of both camps are. Because in reality, the system would likely remain exploitable, whether the Chief Justice gets impeached or not, because there are those who are ready to break the law, just to prove someone is breaking the law.

  8. As to Enrile’s question on CULPA, I believe he implied that DOLUS or intent to deceive is not necessary to be guilty of CULPAble violation of the Constitution. All it needed was CULPA or a mistake or fault.

    Enrile’s reasoning that a CULPAble violation of the Constitution does not need intent (to deceive) as in DOLUS is a NON SEQUITUR.

    Corona’s non-inclusion of dollar accounts and some peso accounts is NOT a legally imposed duty by virtue of the Foreign Currency Deposits Law and the fact that the peso accounts are not owned by the Chief Justice but merely held in trust.

    Moreover, as the Defense kept on saying since Day One, culpable violation of the Constitution and/or betrayal of public trust must be in the same level of treason, bribery, graft and corruption, other HIGH crimes. Wrongful filing of SALN is simply not in that category since such a misdemeanor, accdg to law, could be remedied by simply correcting said SALN.

    Even if wrongful filing of SALN is LEVIS CULPA or LEVISSIMA CULPA, it is still NOT CULPABLE violation of the Constitution.

    Unfortunately, Political Expediency is, as it has always been, the name of the game. In other words, quid pro quo. If you’re the President, you have a lot of quid to get all the quos you need.


    UNLESS Lapid will think of his utang-na-loob kay GMA is greater than his utang-na-loob kay PNoy.

    And Honasan, Escudero and Estrada will somehow either vote for acquittal or abstain from voting.

    If any of the three of the four mentioned above, for whatever reason, will vote for acquittal or abstain from voting, then it will be a miracle.

    Although Escudero’s mom had just been appointed by PNoy as UP Regent, he might want to show his independence from anyone to show that he is of presidential caliber.

    The Estradas are not really PNoy allies.

    Honasan might just want to give justice to Corona because he has experienced persecution several times – from Cory Aquino and GMA. But then, he might just follow Enrile’s lead, which is to vote against Corona.

    There is also still a chance that the Cayetano siblings will go separate ways. It’s better politics that way – not to put all their eggs in one basket.

    1. ang sabi mo ay hindi kasalanan ang pagkakamali sa SALN .corona eh papaano mo maipapaliwanag kung bakit ipinakulong niya si ongat ang pinsan niya na dahil N/a ang inilagay niya sa SALN at siguro maiipaliwanag mo rin yung babae na sa palengkeng pinakulong niya …ang kaso niya ay SALN na pera na hindi niya inilagay sa SALN siya ang judge alam niya ang ginawa niya ginagamit niya ang secresy law… hindi importante ang batas dahil ang tanong ay kung maypera sya sa bangko na wala sa SALN ….inamin niya na meron kaya guilty yung lang ang importante kaya nag drama sya para kaawaan pero sawa na ang mga politiko at taong bayan sa sakit sakitan puro drama tama na ikulong ang may kasalanan gaya ng ginagawa ng judge sa taong mahirap..

      1. At sawa na rin ang taongbayan sa politiko.

        Hindi ka pala marunong mag-isip e. That is from someone who refuse to use logic and reason. You’re intellectually bankrupt, believe it or not. 😛

      2. @nelson; sir nmn, sensya ka na ha pero napuna ko lang, bakit ganyan ka mag comment? kasing tunog mo si tupaz at farinas?. talaga po ba na ang tao kahit nag aral at may titulo ay di mo masasabi intelehente ayon sa kanyang pananalita at pag aasal.

        hayaan mo, kung sakali ma convict si CJ, ang bigat ng pangangasiwa ng Pnoy government ang pipilay mismo ki Pnoy at mga alipores nito..sa hulit-huli na kay CJ pa rin ang malakas na halakhak sapagkat sila rin ay mananagot sa taong-bayan, sila rin ay huhusgahan matapos nito. Pati yan media na panig ki Pnoy ay hindi rin yan magtatagal…sa ngayon ay nakatapak sila alapaap at akala mo ay di na sila magigiba…kung yong imperyo ng roma na ubod ng lawak at makapangyarihan ay bumagsak din, sila pa kaya?.

  9. It was a pity the defense missed to higlight the definition of “culpable violation of consitution” based on the records of the 1987 ConCom. Such answer came from Farinas when solicited by JPE but it would have been more convincing to work for the defense if J. Cuevas lectured it upon the senator judges.

    The prosecution’s closing statement was too flowery, cheaply written and very thin of legal arguments. Kumbaga kikiam. Appealing sa masa. Malasa nga pero puro vetsin lang. The defense’s however was rich of intllectual reasoning. Masarap pakingan sa mga nais makaunawa. Pero para syang cordon bleu. Masarap nga pero hindi ma-abot ng ordiaryong tao ang lasa at sustansya nito.

    In the end, many senators will decide kung ano ang mabuti sa career nila irrespective of evidence and truth. That’s why I smell conviction. And for that I mourn.

  10. Just a thought:
    Once the judgment of the senators will be based on the soundness of CJ Corona’s interpretation on FCDU law, the Constitution and SALN law, patay ang Senators because it will open the doors for the SC to come in. They should not forget that all questions of law shall be resolved by the SC alone.

    1. ikaw ba ay para ke corona o para sa prosecutor naguguluhan ako sa mga sinasabi mo balingbing ka at at sa huli sabimo ay conviction tapos ang mga senador naman ang iyung tinatakot ….hindi problema yan mga politiko yan alam nila ang kanilang gagawin….ang mahalaga ay inamin ni corona na may pera sa banko at dollar account tapos the end ..nautakan na naman sila ng prosecutor …ang sabi ng mga makacorona ay tanga walang ebidensya ang prosecutor eh si cuevas ang tanga dahil pinatawag mniya si morales eh di lumabas tuloy ang listahan ng banko at dollar ni corona at inami n pa niya na meron nga kayalang ay nagpapalusot pa gaya ng sinabi ni farinas …..guilty dapat hindi na kailangan ang palusot na culpa O kupal ahahahahahah!!!!!

      1. Tanga mo talaga. Hindi ba pwede ang maging neutral at walang pinapanigan sa makitid at dilaw mong utak? Kung hindi mo alam, ang hustisya ay para sa lahat, hindi lang sa selected few.

        Ikamusta mo ako kay Valte, sigurado akong tuwang-tuwa na naman kayo diyan sa Communications Group at marami na namang nagkakalat na posters niyo.

  11. Speaker Belmonte was talking about “moral fitness”…I think the Dude is like a thief, talking about “moral fitness”…When you impeach a Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, in five (5) minutes of deliberation. And refuse to sign any waiver of your Bank Account…what would people think? You are “morally fit”, to hold public office?
    We ask the Senator Judges to Acquit Justice Corona. Stop the Greed and the Lust for Power of Noynoy Aquino, his family, and his cahoots. We want to move on, and strengthen/improve the Judiciary…so that common people like you and me…will have also a good service in our Judiciary…

  12. I’m not sure I get this. But intent was not proven or disproven or even questioned. Can JPE convict based on that?

    “Enrile seems to have been implying that Corona is culpable for opting to misrepresent his Statement of Assets Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) under the principle of what sets apart mere fault or culpa and intent to defraud or deceive or dolus. Whereas the defense asserts that Corona’s opting to refrain from declaring his dollar accounts in his SALN was an intellectual interpretation — which can be construed as a fault in understanding — of the law, Enrile hints that he sees fault in such an action in terms of Corona’s possible intent — just short of him asserting intent to be deceitful on Corona’s part.”

  13. http://www.rappler.com/newsbreak/5962-investing-in-dollars-in-the-60-s-not-allowed,-says-expert

    Corona: he and his wife began investing their savings in foreign-denominated accounts in the 1968, when the peso-dollar exchange was at 2 peso for every $1.

    CORONA IS A BIG F**KIN LYING B*STARD! The lie stares straight in your face Benign0! And that makes you and the entire GRP organization an accomplice, a PROSTITUTE of this very, very corrupt Chief Justice! Good riddance to all of you tomorrow!

    1. Tough luck, dude. The very essence of GRP lies in its being consistently on the UNPOPULAR but sensible side of the National Debate which, if you will recall, has been described thus:

      AN admired Filipino economist, based in New York, surveyed the economic situation here and dolefully intoned: ”What ails the country is that Philippine society is intellectually bankrupt.” Take, for instance, the national debates, she pointed out.

      “They are droll and unintelligent, focused on the trivial or the irrelevant.” When the issues are of some significance, it’s the wrong arguments that prevail, the wrong side wins. Logic and common sense take the backseat to political arguments and the views of the poorly-educated.

      So like you, dude, we know our place in the scheme of things. And we like where we are situated — regardless of who in the human cesspool we write about wins or loses.

      Deal with it.

      1. yan ang pagkakamali ng economist nayan sya ba ay pilinpino ???kung hindi ay makekealam na naman ang mga tiga ibang bansa akala mo nakatira siya dito ..hindi niya alam na ang taong maypinagaralan ay siya magaling magnakaw sa gobyerno …tinan mo si marcos ,ramos .arroyo, estrada puro magnanakaw tapos sasabihin niya na ang taong mahirap at walang pinagaralan ang nagpapabagsak ng gobyerno saan dinadala ng mga taong gobyerno ang pera ng bayan alam ba niya ….ang taong mahirap ay kung magnakaw ay kaunti lang pero ang taong gobyerno ay million ngayon sino ang egnoranus sya….ang taong mahirap ay pag kinasuhan ay kulong agad ang taong mayaman at maypinag aralan ay puro palusot kahit buko na at umamin pa gaya ni arroyo sa dayaan sa election sabi ay im sorry si marcos na kung saan saan inilagay ang pera ay hangang ngayon ay hindi pa napapatunayan na nagnakaw at si corona na umamin na may pera sa banko at dollar account na inamin niya ….guity guilty guilty ………tapos na ang drama supporting actor na si corona

        1. You’re losing credibility each and every day due to your anti-intellectual posts.

          Are we going on the “supporting actor si Corona” schtick? Face it, you love being humiliated if that happens to you; someone who is in a wheelchair and calls you ‘supporting actor’ regardless of your condition or not. You’re just as insane as PNoy, right?

          Oh yeah, your comment is epic fail on saying ‘pag nagnakaw ang mahirap, kaunti lang.’ Hindi lang sa pera kundi sa ibang resources tulad ng kuryente, especially on squatter people. You can’t even explain kung bakit marami ang nagnakaw ng kable sa iba’t ibang lugar. Corruption starts at the bottom. Wala ka lang alam, admit it. 😛

        2. @nelson; may simpatya ako sa mga mahihirap at hindi ko namn pinagtatanggol ang mga sinasabi mong kurap..ngunit ang gawaing pagnanakaw ay parehas kong tinatakwil. pero yon tinutukoy mong mga “magnanakaw” ay hinalal ng mga taong bayan at karamihan sa mga bomoto ay ang mga mahihirap na walang choice kundi ang ipalit ang kanilang boto sa makakapaglaman ng kanilang mga sikmura noong panahon ng botohan.

          etong mga mahihirap ang madaling maguyo ng ABS-CBN at paniniwalain na tanging ginagawa ni Pnoy ay ang layunin ng tuwid na daan, etong grupo na eto ang mga namamayani ngayon kasama ang lopez group at cojuangco sa malalaking contrata sa infrastructure ng pamahalaan lahat ng pangunahing ahensya at industriya, simulan mo sa pabahay, pa kotse, pakalsada, insurance, security agency, sangay ng militar, police, relis, construction, palenke, transport,sigarilyo, alak, banko, travel agency, telepono, ilaw , tubig, aggregates, mining…jesus mariosep…weather-weather lang yan.

      2. Benign0 dude, for that intellectually bankrupt face just look at your mirror.

        As for intelligence sorry na lang, sumablay po when CJ Corona declared his dollar purchase transactions in 1968.

        So there, Benign0’s A*S was caught with XCJ Corona’s D*CK inside 😀 MWAHAHAHA

        Corona: “he and his wife began investing their savings in foreign-denominated accounts in the 1968, when the peso-dollar exchange was at 2 peso for every $1.”


    2. @cjcoronsky: And how about YOU? Are you no corrupt? You can say that Corona is corrupt but it’s hard to admit that we, as citizens, are corrupt. My guess is you voted Noynoy, isn’t it? 😛

      Just to remind you that even a PNoy-appointed CJ (either Carpio or Serreno) will have a conflict of interest. Mag-isip ka naman, gunggong.

      Also, Rappler is total BS just like your BS Aquino. My guess is it was owned by Tonyboy Cojuangco and Rapa Lopa.

  14. PALUSOT?! Tough to disagree.

    BUT I wish the Prosecution prepared, and did a better job from the opening credits of this mini series. The neglect of due process is a can of worms in itself and should never be overlooked.

    In this light, however it’s decided, we all lose. Either way the law has been bent to reward one’s personal gain. A tragic ending to months of TV.

    Game of Thrones na lang …

        1. E di wag ka pumunta. 😛 Ikaw naman ang may problema dito e.

          Nagsawa ka kasi hindi ka gumagamit ng critical analysis. Most of your comments show that your EMO is in full force. You love to talk about PEOPLE yet this blog loves to talk IDEAS.

          Walang patutunguhan ang mga anti-intellectual na tulad mo. You know that. 😀

        2. And if you ever come back here to rage your emo childishness again utak squatter, it’s proof that you are an incompetent person for being a troll. Look who’s corrupt now.

        3. @nelson

          meh, who gives a flying feather about your opinion anyway?

          Good riddance and don’t ever show your retarded mug here again!

        4. eh ganyan namn kau eh baluktot ang katwiran at pag nasusupalpal kung ano-ano pa sinasabi, better shut-off your mouth and leave quietly, we don’t need your shallow logic..nakakasulasok ka na po, sa totoo lang..sarado ang isip mo, ayaw mo kc intindihin ang katwiran ng mga nag reresearch. yan ang napapala mo sa ka nonood ng channel 2 at pakikinig mo ng failon ngayon, at yon ki dean amado valadez na pagka-bias na mga pananaw. eh lahat yon bayaran ng ABS_CBN kasama na dyan si avena. hahaha corruption din ang tawag don, kino kurap nila ang mga isip ng mga mahihina..

  15. I said that the worst is yet to come. The dictator BS Aquino and his liking for participatory socialism is very evident in what he says or does. His continuing support for the Marxist economic model of socialism is anti-thesis to democracy.

    Imagine the state easing out capitalism and promoting state control of the economy and production. Picture the state imposing collectivization and “equitable” distribution of wealth and properties. Utopia? Hell no! His Akbayan leftist party is for participatory socialism. The question is… will the Marxists fight the Maoists? Socialism is synonymous to red, commie and communist. Leftist deception may result in a Marxist leftist and Communist Maoist alliance. What is the difference? Both are commies.


  16. BenignO:

    I don’t think “the principle of what sets apart mere fault or culpa and intent to defraud or deceive or dolus” Senator Enrile elaborated during yesterday’s session would apply to CJ Corona’s reasoned failure to include his foreign currency deposits in his SALN.

    For there is this Civil Service Commission Implementing Rule (Section 1 of Rule VIII, Review and Compliance Procedure) of R.A. 6713 which specifically provides–in the case of SALN statements “not properly filed”–for the “NECESSARY CORRECTIVE ACTION” to be undertaken:

    “In the event said authorities determine that a statement is not properly filed, they shall inform the reporting individual and direct him to take the necessary corrective action.

    This wise inclusion of such a rare, very-seldom used proviso–“take the necessary corrective action”–was evidently inserted in anticipation of errors and omissions that would be expected to abound from, say, the vagueness of the filing instructions and even the honest misreading of the rules, obviously as in CJ Corona’s case.

    In fact, in view of these anticipated mistakes in the filing, there is this provision in the Rules which even stipulates that:

    “The individual to whom an opinion is rendered, and any other individual involved in a similar factual situation, and who, after issuance of the opinion acts in good faith in accordance with it shall not be subject to any sanction provided in the Code.”

    So, why would the individual resort to deception and concealment when a specific Rule provides that those with SALNs “not properly filed” and found to have errors and omissions, but act “in good faith” to correct the mistakes, “shall not be subject to any sanction provided in the Code”?

    Can these errors and omissions (subject to “corrective action” at that) CJ Corona admittedly committed be plausibly viewed as having risen to the level of a “culpable violation of the Constitution, treason, bribery, graft and corruption, other high crimes, or betrayal of public trust”?

    I don’t think so. But if these cited CSC Rules are now to be regarded as hidden wealth loopholes; then, let these rules be revised first and forthwith amended.

    Meanwhile, as I see it, owing to the prevailing afore cited CSC Rule on SALN compliance, the most that the Impeachment Court can do regarding CJ Corona’s misinterpretation (that brought about the omission of foreign currency deposits in his SALNs) would be to simply “inform the reporting individual [CJ Corona] and direct him to take the necessary corrective action”–but certainly not to the extent of using this omission to justify the extreme penalty of conviction and removal from office.

  17. I think Farinas did brilliantly in his argument, especially the “Nagpapalusot lang si CJ” position that he over and over stressed in his statement. While this kind of reasoning won’t stand to logical and level-headed Filipinos, it is very appealing to the psyche of the “bakya” crowd. Kasi ang maiisip nila ay “kami naghihirap, samantalang eto si CJ may milyones na tinatago” at iba pang kadramahan sa buhay. And with the incoming 2013 elections, ang sentimyento ng masa will be the main consideration of the senators in their vote.

    Anyhow, President Aquino said in his previous speeches that CJ Corona ay isang balakid sa kanyang matuwid na daan; ergo, kung mapapaalis siya sa pwesto, u-unlad na ang Pilipinas. Now that nakakulong na si CGMA, if ma-convict si CJ, wala ng “PALUSOT” ang President sa mga kapalpakan na mangyayari sa Pilipinas in the next four years mapatungkol man sa ekonomiya, kriminalidad, seguridad or anumanpa!

  18. Trillaness has loyalties — after all, he was PaRRRddDDoNNED!!!

    Now, a few Yellows had been yelling the old battlecry VILL-aaAAArrRRR-ooOYYyOO. The battle crying, (or bags???) seemed to have worked. Villar voted CONVICT.

    What are the odds that the new CJ will sit while it gets re-visited — this Price-per-hectare-for-Hacienda-Luisita that Kris Aquino and others are to get?

  19. My “fearless forecast” for Corona’s acquittal did NOT happen. I guess I underestimated the Senator-judges’ decision. My bad. 🙂

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