Complainant Larry Gadon said that Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno asked the judges, through an SC official, to not issue an arrest warrant against Sen. De Lima—a claim, denied by the two judges.
SC, file
Muntinlupa judges deny Sereno called them to stop De Lima arrest
Kristine Joy Patag ( - February 19, 2018 - 3:55pm
MANILA, Philippines — Two Muntinlupa court judges denied that Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno ordered them to not issue an arrest warrant against Sen. Leila de Lima, a government critic now detained on drug-related cases.
Judges Amelia Fabros Corpuz (Muntinlupa RTC Branch 205) and Patria Manalastas De Leon (Branch 206), on Monday, both denied receiving calls from Sereno or any member of the Supreme Court asking them to not order a warrant of arrest against De Lima.
Asked by Rep. Vicente Veloso (Leyte) to attest to complainant Larry Gadon's allegation that an official from the SC called them not to have De Lima arrested, Corpuz said: "That is not true your honor."
Judge De Leon stressed: "I have not received any instruction to that effect whether directly or indirectly."
Muntinlupa RTC Branch 205 Judge Juanita Guerrero, who was the first among the three judges to issue an arrest warrant against De Lima, was also invited as a resource speaker on Monday's hearing.
Guerrero, who later inhibited from the case, however was on leave and did not appear at Monday's hearing.
Gadon said he was referring to Deputy Court Administrator Linda Aldecoa-Delorino as the official who made the call.
Delorino also denied Gadon's allegation. 
She said: "Personally, I did not receive any instruction from the chief justice to call any of the judges handling the case."
Delorino also said that Guerrero told her she did not receive any call from Sereno or from any SC official.
She also said that she only called Corpuz and Manalastas to coordinate whether they need to augment manpower and other resources as for the De Lima cases.
"It was only out of concern for them. It was not to influence them in any way," Delorino added.
Manalastas backed Delorino, and said that the SC official also said that she trusts that the judge will do what is right. The House panel is on its 14th hearing on the impeachment rap against Sereno.

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