VICE PRESIDENT Jejomar Binay has scored a victory in a criminal complaint for libel he filed against former Makati City Vice Mayor Roberto Brillante.
This came about after the Special 11th Division of the Court of Appeals (CA) through Associate Justice Pedro Corales denied a petition for certiorari filed by Brillante questioning the orders of the Makati City Regional Trial Court (RTC), Branch 145.
In his petition, Brillante assailed the orders of the RTC denying his motion to lift hold departure order (HDO) and his motion for reconsideration.
An HDO was issued by the trial court against Brillante on June 15, 1992.
It arose after Binay filed five counts of libel against Brillante.
In 2004, the Supreme Court affirmed Brillante’s conviction and ordered him to pay moral damages to Binay and Francisco Baloloy in the amount of more than P500,000 with subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency.
In its November 13, 2015 ruling that was released only recently, the CA dismissed Brillante’s petition.
“With Brillante’s failure to pay the pecuniary liabilities imposed upon him, the RTC acted within the ambit of law when it denied his motion to lift the HDO,” the appellate court said.
According to the CA, “to countenance such refusal and simply allow Brillante to travel abroad would render nugatory the imposition of subsidiary penalty in case he fails to pay the fine imposed upon him.”
Concurring with the verdict were Associate Justices Sesinando Villon and Nina Antonio-Valenzuela.