Appeals court rejects Ampatuan petition to cite Mangudadatu lawyer for contempt

THE Court of Appeals Tenth Division has dismissed the petition of Andal Ampatuan Jr., one of the accused in the Maguindanao Massacre, to cite Nena Santos, lawyer for Maguindanao Governor Esmael “Toto” Mangudadatu, for indirect contempt.
In a resolution penned by Associate Justice Fernanda Lampas-Peralta, the appeals court affirmed the ruling of Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 224 dated April 19, 2011 dismissing Ampatuan’s petition.
The court ruled that the motion for reconsideration failed to present new evidence which would warrant the reversal of its ruling on March 27.
Ampatuan alleged that Santos on various occasions issued statements on television and print discussing the merits of the case to push her client’s position and generate hatred against Ampatuan.
He said Santos violated an Omnibus Order dated May 28, 2010 issued by Quezon City Regional Trial Court directing her, among others, from making public statements that tend to influence the proceedings of the case.
Santos was quoted in a newspaper report that the ambush of Richard Petisme, a lawyer for witness Rasul Sangki, “was meant to warn the families of the victims and the witnesses of the Nov. 23 massacre.”

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