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Justice for Leny movement revived

- Sheila Crisostomo -
Friends of 1991 hazing victim Leny Villa will revive the Justice for Leny Movement (JLM) to ask the Court of Appeals (CA) to reverse its decision acquiting 29 members of the Aquila Legis law fraternity, who had been tried and convicted of Villa’s death.

Carina Agarao, president of Crusade Against Violence (CAV), said Villa’s friends — who are now lawyers — would "pitch in" with their services to ensure that justice is served to the Villa family.

"His friends are not only showing their emotional support for the Villa family," she said. "They have been calling the family. They would be helping in the legal aspect."

The CA had reversed a lower court decision convicting the 19 but found two other co-accused guilty of homicide for causing Villa’s death during hazing rites in February 1991.

Four other members of Aquila Legis were found liable for the lighter offense of physical injuries.

Lawyer Maricel Gacutan, JLM founding member, told reporters they are mobilizing JLM members to support the Villa family in their struggle for the reversal of the CA decision.

"We were all in shock when we learned about the acquital," she said. "We were still in school when Leny died and it really hit us strong."

On the other hand, lawyer Robert Navera said they would help the Villa family file a motion for reconsideration before the CA.

"We’ll be assisting the family in looking for legal remedies," he said. "We’ll be making use of what we are trained for so justice can finally be served for Leny."

Navera and Villa were among seven neophytes who underwent the fatal hazing before members of Aquila Legis in a private compound in Caloocan City on Feb. 10, 1991.

Villa died in the hazing but Navera did not learn about it until he had hurdled the tough rites and was sworn in as a member of the fraternity.

When Navera was informed about Villa’s death, he resigned from Aquila Legis.

AQUILA LEGIS

CALOOCAN CITY

CARINA AGARAO

COURT OF APPEALS

CRUSADE AGAINST VIOLENCE

LAWYER MARICEL GACUTAN

LENY

LENY MOVEMENT

LENY VILLA

VILLA

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