A week after he was slapped with the crime of adultery, expelled Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) Minister Lowell Menorca remains tight-lipped on the criminal charges.
Menorca has not denied the charges leveled against him by INC member Davis Flores, who alleged the ousted church minister had an illicit affair with his wife Aedtnavye Juntilla Lazo from 2008 to 2015.
INC leadership was wondering why Me-norca, who is set to testify at the Court of Appeals today, has refused to issue a state-ment regarding the charges up to this time.
When asked to respond to the allegations, Menorca said he would “have to talk to my lawyers first.”
Menorca’s lawyer, Trixie Angeles, has not publicly made a comment on the complaint filed by Flores against her client.
In his five-page complaint filed at the Manila City Prosecutor’s Office, Flores accused Menorca of having an affair with his estranged wife, Lazo, whom Flores introduced to Menorca in 2008.
Flores said he became suspicious of his wife when the latter would show him flirtatious text messages from Menorca that read “Do you have a twin sister locked in a tower somewhere?” and “Davis is lucky to have a princess like you, too bad for me I don’t.”
Later, Flores recounted how he noticed that Lazo owned a high-end cellphone “which we could not afford” as well as other gifts. Flores also observed “lots of bath soaps, shampoos and other toiletries from Manila Diamond Hotel, Bayview Park Hotel, and Sogo Hotel” in their bathroom.
Flores was later able to confirm his long-standing suspicions in late 2015 after he saw the blog “D_OWNER_OF_AJS_HEART” (downerofajsheart.blogspot.com).
“Checking the website, I learned that respondent Menorca maintained a blog where he proudly documented his adulterous affair with respondent Lazo,” according to Flores’ complaint.
“AJ” refers to Lazo, while the author handle “Eric” is one of Menorca’s nicknames.
In September 2015, Flores confronted his wife about the illicit relationship, after which Lazo “succumbed to the avalanche of the body of evidence which, when pieced together, conclusively proves a forbidden affair.”
“Instead of asking for forgiveness, she deserted our home and lived elsewhere in an apartment reportedly owned or rented by her paramour: respondent Menorca,” the complaint read.
Flores said he was forced to file a complaint against Menorca after seeing “incriminating pictures” of the two on social media earlier this month.
While Menorca’s wife, Jingky Otsuka-Menorca, has claimed that the charges are part of efforts to harass her husband, Flores’ lawyer Kristoffer Purisima said, “This is an independent action by my client. My client is the one aggrieved here. He’s the victim… What we’re after here is the truth.”
Nelson S. Badilla