No probable cause: Robredo cleared in sedition case
Vice President Leni Robredo and 25 others including members of the opposition have been cleared of sedition by the Department of Justice (DOJ) over their alleged involvement in the “Ang Totoong Narcolist” video series.
The DOJ said the panel of prosecutors released last Friday (Feb. 7) a resolution of the preliminary investigation over the complaint filed by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG) against 36 persons including Robredo.
“The Panel however dismissed the complaint for sedition, inciting to sedition, cyberlibel, libel, estafa and obstruction of justice against all respondents,” the DOJ said in a statement on Monday (Feb. 10).
“In finding no probable cause for sedition or inciting to sedition, the Panel found the element of public and tumultuous uprising wanting,” it pointed out.
The DOJ added that “while the video series ‘contains libelous imputations against President Duterte and his family which tend to create hatred or revenge against them,’ nonetheless no words were uttered which tended to incite the people to take up arms or rise against the government.”
Aside from Robredo, those cleared include Senators Risa Hontiveros and Leila De Lima and members of the opposition’s 2019 “Otso Diretso” senatorial slate, namely, former senator Bam Aquino, former Magdalo party-list Rep. Gary Alejano, former Solicitor General Florin Hilbay, Robredo’s election lawyer Romulo Macalintal, lawyer Chel Diokno, former Quezon Rep. Lorenzo Tanada III, and Samira Gutoc-Tomawis.
On the other hand, the panel found probable cause to indict former senator Antonio Trillane IV and 10 others including Peter Joemel Advincula alias Bikoy for conspiracy to commit sedition.
The case stemmed from the “Ang Totoong Narcolist” videos which accused Duterte family members as being involved the narcotics trade.
Citing Bikoy’s testimony, the PNP-CIDG said that Advincula claimed members of the opposition were behind the videos which were meant to discredit and destabilize the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.