CA allows GMA to post bail

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No new evidence to keep former president in detention

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 Arroyo

Arroyo

Former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will soon be allowed to post bail in connection with an electoral-sabotage complaint filed against her by the Justice department.

Arroyo, former Maguindanao governor Andal Ampatuan Jr. and former election officer Lintang Bedol were charged for allegedly staging a 12-0 victory for the administration Team Unity’s senatorial candidates in Maguindanao in the 2007 polls.

Former Maguindanao provincial administrator Norie Unas, who implicated Arroyo in the alleged cheating, died of an illness last year.

At least 15 witnesses, including Unas, were presented during bail hearings for Arroyo.

In a two-page resolution dated September 22, the Special Division of the Court of Appeals denied a Justice department motion for reconsideration on its earlier ruling affirming a decision of the Pasay City Regional Trial Court (RTC) allowing Arroyo to post bail.

Judge Jesus Mupas allowed the former president to post bail after prosecutors failed to convince him that there is strong evidence against Arroyo.

The CA resolution penned by Associate Justices Elihu Ybañez, Isaias Dicdican and Victoria Isabel Paredes concurred with the lower court’s findings that the prosecutors who opposed the former leader’s bail petition had no new arguments to convince the court to reverse its ruling.

“We have carefully reviewed the arguments raised in the said motion for reconsideration and find the same to be mere reiteration of matters previously considered and found to be without merit in the decision subject of this recourse. We thus see no compelling reason to modify, reverse or set aside our previous decision,” the resolution read.

“For these reasons, the instant motion for reconsideration is hereby denied,” according to the appellate court.

In its March 24, 2015 decision, the CA said the government has a weak case against Arroyo.

The electoral-sabotage indictment against the former president was filed by Justice Secretary Leila de Lima and the Commission on Elections then headed by Sixto Brillantes Jr. on November 18, 2011.

The former president was accused of masterminding fraudulent elections in 2007 in conspiracy with then-Comelec Chairman Benjamin Abalos.

The court ruled that the only evidence of the Department of Justice and the Comelec against Arroyo is the testimony of Unas “whose credibility was seen by the trial judge to be tainted with doubt and insufficient to establish a strong evidence of guilt on the part of respondent Arroyo.”

“Consequently, in finding that respondent Arroyo’s evidence of guilt is not strong, the grant of bail now becomes a matter of right. Thus, it cannot be said that the trial judge acted in a capricious, whimsical or despotic manner when he issued the assailed orders granting bail to respondent Arroyo,” the decision read.

Further, the CA ruled that no grave abuse of discretion was found from the lower court in allowing Arroyo to post bail.

“Assuming arguendo that the respondent judge erred in evaluating the evidence during the hearing on the application for bail, certiorari will not lie. As stated earlier, no grave abuse of discretion may be attributed to a court simply because of its alleged wrongful appreciation of facts and evidence. In short, certiorari will issue only to correct errors of jurisdiction, not errors of procedure or mistakes in the findings or conclusions of the lower court,” it said.

This was the first case filed against Arroyo under the Aquino administration to block an alleged attempt by the accused to flee the country.

The Justice department used this case as basis to put the former president in the Bureau of Immigration Watchlist Order.

Court records show that since the case was filed in December 2012, only two out of more than 50 witnesses were presented during the trial.

Arroyo remains in detention over a plunder case filed against her by the Office of the Ombudsman for allegedly mishandling Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office funds.

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28 Comments

  1. After Aquino won in 2010, i believed that GMA should be arrested and put to trial, in which the Filipino nation and GMA both deserve to find justice, but keeping GMA on jail till 2015 without any conviction or strong proof was absolutely ridiculous!!Well GMA just deserve to be on bail, actually should have been bailed right after a year of incarceration as her case was more political..!!

  2. chillax e kahit mag post sya ng bail sa electoral sabotage meron pa sya kaso ng plunder so di pa rin sya makalalaya hanggang madinig ng sandiganbayan.

    • we owed to GMA our sctex, slex and other roads , the clearing of commonwealth avenue now the widest road with 8 lanes. In her time government employees were given increased in basic salary and other fringe benefits now 6 years is near to end nothing given to 1.6m government employees. GMA charges has not been proven, why the government kept her from hospital detention. I am not pro GMA, just have a little of humane consideration. It is better to forgive.

  3. I like to give the credit to GMA for the much bigger tax collection the Pnoy Admin is claiming to be their efforts. It was during GMA admin that the value added tax bill was seriously filed studied and approved. That time GMA’s rating dropped because the law was anti poor. Today’s huge tax take is because of the VAT/ EVAT the efforts of Pnoys former teacher.

  4. GMA should run for SENATOR…….She can run under VP Binay or BBM. I am sure she will win among the top 3 senatoriables. She has a very clean record in government.The best among all past president. Mabuhay po kayo Madame.

  5. only in the Pinas, where people always witnessing the play, mor-moro. we have to laugh or smile, otherwise we will become insane. but , remember, when the saturation point of bad governance and injustice is reach, the people will have a decisive move to put our thoughts into actions. what does it mean? simply, change the system by radical processes.

  6. First there was the truth commission, but prejudged to be unconstitutional. Now it’s GMA’s turn for revenge. I was so damn disappointed with the broken promises this present government have bestowed to the country. Now I can’t seem to imagine where have the FOI gone?

  7. Surprise, surprise. Another big fish escapes the net..However.. I. Feel inclined to say that keeping anyone waiting for justice for many, many years, it not right.

  8. Susanita Tesiorna on

    Kung si Pres GMA ay naging biktima ni Pinoy at kanyang mga alipores, ano pa kaya ang isang ordianryong mamamaya…..Ganito na lang ba kababa ang Pinas?

  9. She was allowed to ost bail on one of the cases filed against her. But she still can’t leave the hospital because of the other ‘weak’ cases against her. Let’s just wait until this happens to Noynoy and let’s see what he has to say…

  10. Former President Gloria Arroyo should be release ASAP as he was detained without due process and weak evidence against her. YAN ang Panot Pinoy at Laila De Lima na yan ang dapat ikulong. Ano na ang nangyayari sa bansa natin ngayon?

  11. This show our justice is slow and corrupt,that is why corruption addict Mr.13% Vp Binay still not in jail.We need Duterte/Cayetano tandem 2016 to change all this things.

  12. slowly and little by little the government’s vindictiveness is failing. The truth shall set you free applies here. Sana maka uwi na kayo ma’am at makapahinga na kasama ang mga apo ninyo.

  13. Elizabeth Aranas Bueno on

    Good news! She should not have been detained in the first place. They had a weak case against her. She was a better president. She made sure that government employees were given a raise before she left office. She has done more to our economy. Wish her good health and more years of service to her country.

  14. at last she will be freed from the vindictive whims of her class “d” student in economics! nxt time, study your homework first before engaging in adventures like this…

  15. Arroyo biktima ng mga nakakasukang kakadiri kakasumpang mga uncivilized tsismiss oriented people…

  16. Maribel A. Calanda on

    Justice Secretary Leila de Lima filed a weak case so she should be castigated because of the abrupt filing of the case. It is about time that the former president post a bail and return to her residence after 4 years under the so called hospital arrest.

  17. Mar Padilla, Jr. on

    She got enough, let her file a bail and remove her the watch list, so she could go for Medical treatment of her choice.

  18. Nancy Bulok Cake on

    The Court of Laws in the Philippines is so slow that it will come to a point where moneyed accused will be able to get away with their crimes. The rich and the famous corrupt people accused of crimes like Estrada, Revilla and Binay will get away for their crimes by buying time and bribing CA justices or judges. They will employ all the legal technicalities just to get away with their crimes. ONLY in the Philippines that you see these people with “napakapal ng mukha” to invoke the name of God that they are innocent. Check their banks and properties and these would not even equate their salaries as mayor, senator or VP. How can they afford the luxuries of billionaires like mansions, sending their children to exclusive schools, sending their kids to U.S. and England to study, numerous cars. These were all taken from their corruptive practices as all Filipinos know by now.

    • what crime did PGMA commit and what was the court’s verdict? remember she’s only guilty in your empty mind. The maxim of our law is “Innocent until proven guilty.” Never forget that.

    • mag abugado ka puro ka sisi kamag anak kb ng mga noytards? wala
      ngang matibay na ebidencya. palitan mo yung mga abugado at judges,
      ay mag aral ka muna ng abogasya. iyakin.

    • Poor you bulok. You really have no real case against GMA, VP Binay, Enrile, Revilla and Jinggoy. Cry your heart out sour losers.

  19. Ok. As soon as she has posted bail and set free, it’s time for her to get rid of the wheelchair and most importantly, that annoying neck brace. If not, she should consider changing her doctor.