In a 38-page petition filed yesterday through the National Union of People’s Lawyers led by Edre Olalia, Cesar and Celia Veloso asked the high court to reverse and set aside the ruling of the Court of Appeals (CA) that prevented the taking of their daughter’s deposition or affidavit.
Miguel De Guzman
Mary Jane Veloso kin run to SC to testify vs recruiters
Edu Punay (The Philippine Star) - September 4, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The parents of convicted drug mule Mary Jane Veloso have brought to the Supreme Court (SC) her bid to testify in the criminal cases against her recruiters from her detention cell in Indonesia.

In a 38-page petition filed yesterday through the National Union of People’s Lawyers led by Edre Olalia, Cesar and Celia Veloso asked the high court to reverse and set aside the ruling of the Court of Appeals (CA) that prevented the taking of their daughter’s deposition or affidavit.

They asked the SC to instead reinstate the earlier ruling of Nueva Ecija Regional Trial Court Branch 88 that allowed the deposition for the trial of Veloso’s detained recruiters, couple Ma. Cristina Sergio and Julius Lacanilao, who are facing qualified human trafficking before the RTC.

The petitioners alleged that the CA’s former 11th Division erred in issuing the permanent injunction order against the taking of Veloso’s testimony by deposition.

“Clearly, respondents Sergio and Lacanilao failed to show grave abuse of discretion on the part of the trial court which issued the subject resolutions. Hence, there is no basis – legal and factual – for the Court of Appeals to act on their petition and grant the reliefs prayed for therein,” the petition read.

Veloso’s parents also accused the CA of grave abuse of discretion in “depriving Mary Jane’s right to fair trial” and issuing the assailed order that they said “practically muzzled her from telling the truth.”

“To bar Mary Jane from testifying will prevent the prosecution from fully representing their case by means of crucial material evidence, thereby denyinga the victim of her opportunity to finally be heard. This strikes at the very core of the due process guarantee of the Constitution and puts a premium on technicality at the expense of the right of the state to prosecute criminal wrongdoing,” they stressed.

Lastly, the petitioners contested the findings of the CA that the deposition of Veloso would violate the constitutional right of the two accused to face their accuser under Article III, Section 14 (2) of the 1987 Constitution.

MARY JANE VELOSO NATIONAL UNION OF PEOPLE SUPREME COURT
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