First petition vs anti-terrorism law filed electronically at Supreme Court

Ratziel San Juan - Philstar.com
First petition vs anti-terrorism law filed electronically at Supreme Court
The Supreme Court
Philstar.com / Erwin Cagadas, File

MANILA, Philippines (Update 1, 2:23 p.m.) — A group of lawyers on Saturday electronically filed at the Supreme Court a Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition with Urgent Prayer for the Issuance of a TRO (Temporary Restraining Order) and Writ of Preliminary Injunction and/or Other Injunctive Remedies questioning the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 signed into law Friday.

The petitioners seek to nullify pertinent provisions of the said law and prohibit it from being enforced.

“While threats to our national security need to be addressed, the law, as crafted, is oppressive and inconsistent with our Constitution, hence, the petition. This fight against Terrorism should not and should never be a threat to the fundamental freedoms of all peaceful Filipinos,” Calleja Law Firm said in a Saturday social media post.

The group led by Ateneo and Law Salle law professor/lecturer and lawyer Howard Calleja will proceed to the high court on Monday to physically file the petition.

The list of petitioners also includes lawyer Joseph Peter Calleja, UP Law professor Christopher John Lao, doctor Reynaldo J. Echavez, Napoleon Siongco, Raeyan Reposar, civic groups Frontliners: Tunay na Bayani and Bagong Siklab Pilipinas, as well as Br. Armin A. Luistro, FSC, of the De La Salle Brothers Incorporated.

"The Anti-Terrorism Act contains provisions that are repugnant and perilous to the constitutional rights of every citizen, neither did said provisions present compelling state interests nor show that the least intrusive means were undertaken in order to serve the alleged state purpose,” read the petition.

Similar petition deferred

Meanwhile, the filing of a similar 117-page draft petition by the National Union of Peoples Lawyers has been deferred to include more interested petitioners, revision to include more facts and issues as well as to accomplish remaining procedural requisites.

“In general, the retweaked Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition against constitutionality (with prayer for TRO or Preliminary Injunction) will at the minimum essentially raise the following issues: propriety of remedies & judicial review; violations of due process, right to property, freedom of association, warrantless arrests and detentions without charges, right to bail and travel; and usurpation of judicial prerogatives,” NUPL president, lawyer Edre Olalia said.




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