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Nasabon sa telepono! Duterte teaches Aguirre how to build up case vs. Kerwin, Peter Lim

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President Rodrigo Duterte may have barely passed law school, but his skill in case buildup was honed through his years as a public prosecutor.

Duterte gave Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II the lowdown on building up cases against suspected drug lords Peter Co and Kerwin Espinosa after state prosecutors junked the drug trading charges against them.

Philippine Star editor Marichu Villanueva witnessed what could be considered Duterte’s tutorial session with Aguirre because she was in Malacañang last week for a meeting with the President.

In her March 19 column, Villanueva said Duterte “castigated” Aguirre over the phone after his meeting with journalists.

“While standing near him, I heard the President instructed Aguirre to secure the Senate transcripts – if need be – to pin down Espinosa who testified under oath his illegal drugs trade before the public hearing last year,” she said.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque earlier said Duterte was dismayed by the dismissal of charges against Lim, Espinosa and several drug suspects, particularly since they have been included in his so-called “narco list.”

Duterte had summoned Lim to confront him about his alleged drug links, while Espinosa confessed to dealing drugs in a Senate hearing.

Aguirre has said that a new panel of prosecutors will review the charges against Lim and Espinosa, and work on building a new case.