Presiding Judge Elmo Alameda of the said Makati Regional Trial Court Branch 150 granted the Department of Justice’s plea for arrest warrant and hold departure order against Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV last September 25.
Senate PRIB/Alex Nuevaespaña, File
Trillanes asks Makati court to partially lift travel ban for speaking engagements
Kristine Joy Patag ( - November 21, 2018 - 1:22pm

MANILA, Philippines (Update 2, 3:37 p.m.) — Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV has asked the Makati court that issued a warrant of arrest against him last September to allow him to leave the country for various speaking engagements in Europe and the United States in the next months.

Trillanes, through his lawyer Reynaldo Robles, filed Motion to Leave of Court to Travel Abroad from Dec. 11, 2018 to Jan. 12, 2019, and from Jan. 27 to Feb. 10, 2019 before Makati Regional Trial Court Branch 150.

Presiding Judge Elmo Alameda of the said Makati court granted the Department of Justice’s plea for arrest warrant and hold departure order against Trillanes last September 25.

The court said that Proclamation 572, which declared the senator’s amnesty as void from the beginning, has legal basis. The court has essentially revived the rebellion case against the senator that was dismissed in 2011.

EXPLAINER: Trillanes amnesty: Two courts and two rulings that may meet at SC

Trillanes’ camp said that they received “invitation from different groups” to attend various activities in Amsterdam, Barcelona and London from December 11 to January 12 next year.

He also cited an invitation to deliver a lecture on “Democracy and the Rule of Law in the Philippines” at the Universeit Van Amsterdam on Dec. 13, 2019, as part of the university’s “Asia Updates” series.

The senator would also be traveling to California, Washington D.C., and Maryland, U.S.A. from January 27 to February 10 next year.

He would be “meeting with officials of various groups, organizations and/or institutions” in the United States, “likewise in the discharge of his official duties.”

Attached to his plea are two separate travel order from the Office of the Senate President, signed by Senate President Vicente Sotto III.

Triillanes’ camp stressed the senator is not a flight risk as he has voluntarily surrendered and posted bail the same day the court issued its warrant.

"As shown by his past actions, particularly by the fact that he voluntarily surrendered and posted bail in the instant case immediately upon the issuance of the warrant of arrest in the case, as well as by the fact that he has always returned to the country as committed in the instances he was permitted by the Courts to travel abroad despite of the filing and pendency of the cases against him, herein former Accused is not a flight risk,” the motion further read.

The senator’s camp asked the court to partially lift the hold departure order issued by the court, and allow him to depart the country on the said dates.

Judge to issue ruling on plea in December

The plea was filed on Tuesday, but the copy was released to the media only on Wednesday. The motion was originally set for hearing on Friday, November 23, but Alameda opted to tackle it during the hearing on Wednesday.

The court had initially set November 21 for the prosecution’s presentation of evidence on the rebellion case against the senator.

To save time and effort, Alameda said, the court would address Trillanes’ plea to be allowed to travel.

The court gave the prosecution to file their comment or opposition to the senator’s motion.

Due to time constraints, Robles said that they would not file a reply to the comment and would submit to the wisdom of the court.

Alameda said the court would issue a ruling on Trillanes’ plea on December 3.

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