Close  
  • share this

One SC, without divisions

02:04 AM August 17, 2015

MA. MARGARITA Aytona wrote about the law’s delay, citing her family’s case, saying, in the Supreme Court, it “has been pending for more than five years and still nothing” (“SC party to delaying of cases,” Opinion, 8/12/15). Her name reminds me of Aytona vs Castillo, where in 11 SCRA (Supreme Court Reports Annotated) pages, the majority decided on Jan. 19, 1962, the case involving something President Diosdado Macapagal did on Dec. 31, 1961—or in a matter of 19 days!

Zos Mendoza is my client in the Lenny Villa hazing case. Lenny was killed on Feb. 11, 1991. After two years in the Caloocan Regional Trial Court, the 26 accused were convicted. I was retained on appeal.

ADVERTISEMENT

After a decade in the Court of Appeals, Zos was acquitted along with 19 others. That should have ended the case. But the Court of Appeals entertained a motion for reconsideration. Denied, the victim’s mother and the solicitor general went up to the Supreme Court, which accepted the case, for quadruple jeopardy.

On Feb. 1, 2012, the appellate ruling was basically upheld, but again there was a startling motion that was entertained, for quintuple or multiple jeopardy. Only last April could the acquitted stop twisting in the wind—after 24 years.

FEATURED STORIES

The Constitution gives the Supreme Court two years to decide a case. Here, it decided a mere motion after three years.

Just one fatality in Villa. How long will it take for the Ampatuan massacre case to be decided with finality? When everybody will have died of old age?

In a new Constitution, maybe we should go back to one Supreme Court of 11 members—with no divisions—because its “Balkanization” presents its own set of problems. In the United States, “nine scorpions in a bottle” dispose of all cases in a country of 320 million people.

—R.A.V. SAGUISAG, Palanan, Makati City

Read Next
LATEST STORIES
MOST READ
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

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.

TAGS: Lenny Villa hazing case, Ma. Margarita Aytona, nation, news, Supreme Court
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.



© Copyright 1997-2019 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.