SOMETIME in the latter part of 2014, a young woman approached then House Representative Leni Robredo for assistance on a sensitive matter. The woman claimed that she had been raped by her own father who is an RTC judge.
As the story would then be revealed, there are allegations that the family of the judge tried to ask Robredo to intervene and mediate the issue to prevent the matter becoming public, and she refused. Her refusal allegedly stemmed from her being a mother and a woman, and that she would not turn away someone who needed help, especially a woman who claimed to have been raped by her own father. Since Robredo was already barred from taking up cases as she was a sitting member of the House of Representatives, she referred the case to another lawyer.
These all supposedly happened as private, confidential conversations, considering the sensitive nature of the matter.
Eventually a case was filed by the woman against her own father, and it became public when local media in Naga City reported it.
However, the involvement of Leni Robredo was not made public. Media reports on the case did not even mention Leni Robredo.
The only time Robredo’s involvement was mentioned was by an anonymous blogger who goes by the pseudonym LilacSunsets, who posted it in her blog, first in May 14, 2016 in an entry entitled “An axe to grind,” and later on August 4, 2016 in an entry with the title “A plagiarist, a madman.”
The context in which the information about the case was revealed, and where the name of Leni Robredo was mentioned, is damaging to Robredo herself, as it indicated a possible unethical act that she may have committed.
LilacSunsets is obviously a pro-Robredo hatchet person. She hides in the comfort of her pseudonym to reveal what she thinks are damning information against Robredo critics.
LilacSunsets obviously was fed the information not only about the case, and Robredo’s involvement, but also about the fact that the accused judge has my surname. In her initial entries, she irresponsibly used the information to launch a vitriolic attack against me, wrongfully suggesting that I was the one involved and it was my daughter who was raped.
At the time, I was so angry and went on social media denouncing the canard. It was only then that another relative informed me of the rape case against my relative, and told me that this irresponsible blogger was actually talking of the wrong Contreras.
I had no knowledge of such a case, considering that I was already residing in Laguna since 1978, and that the last time I saw my relative was when I was still in high school.
It is a fact that lawyers are sworn to maintain confidentiality on matters such as this, more so that it involves a sensitive family matter. Robredo is a lawyer. She should know that the mere act of the woman approaching her for legal assistance already binds her to the ethics of her profession.
The only way the information about the case could have reached this pro-Robredo blogger, is from Robredo, or someone who got the information from Robredo. She would not have obtained such it official reports, for it is clear that the case was filed not against me but against my relative. Furthermore, Robredo’s involvement in the case was not mentioned in the media reports, and more so in the official court documents.
Recently, a pro-Robredo anonymous FB account again resurrected the tirade, but this time finally getting the information right that it was my relative who was involved and not me. However, I was still implicated, as the blogger made it appear that Robredo’s refusal to help in reaching an amicable settlement to spare my relative from a legal case was the supposed source of my beef against Robredo.
Indeed, there are reasons why I have this visceral reaction against Robredo, and many of these are drawn from my own personal knowledge of her. After all, we cannot be faulted for having deep-seated biases based on personal encounters and knowledge.
But more importantly, Robredo trolls should realize that many people despise Robredo even if they have not encountered her personally, for a host of reasons. She is being suspected of being a beneficiary of a massive electoral fraud. She is fixated on appearances and self-aggrandizing photo ops. She is perceived as incompetent. She was on vacation for a reunion while her province was being ravaged by Typhoon Nina. She has been shown to be not completely truthful.
Meanwhile, LilacSunsets should prove her mettle and ask for the real reason why my family has an axe to grind against Leni Robredo. And it has nothing to do with rape, but about exerting influence on a school for someone undeserving to graduate as top of her class.