Olongapo court ruling win-win for both parties
The dismissal by the Regional Trial Court, Branch 72, Olongapo City, of the charge against public school teacher Ronnel Mas for inciting to sedition over his online tweet offering a P50-million reward to anybody who could kill President Duterte, appears to be a win-win solution for both the accused and his arresting officers.
While he rightly ruled that Mas’ warrantless arrest was constitutionally defective and his “voluntary confession” inadmissible as evidence in that “it was made without the assistance of counsel” (Miranda doctrine), presiding judge Richard Paradeza preempted the possible filing and prosecution for unlawful arrest under Article 269 of the Revised Penal Code and for administrative charge/s against the arresting officers when he effectively exculpated them by prematurely pronouncing in the same decision that the NBI merely “INADVERTENTLY committed some lapses along the way” in undertaking said arrest (“Duterte bounty Twitter case dismissed,” News, 6/26/20; underscoring for emphasis).
If the purpose of locking up or detaining the victim is to deliver him to the proper authorities, and it develops that the detention is unlawful, it was held in a catena of cases that the offense of unlawful arrest is committed.
DIOSDADO V. CALONGE
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.