Owner of SUV that ran over guard in viral video put on immigration lookout list

Kristine Joy Patag - Philstar.com
Owner of SUV that ran over guard in viral video put on immigration lookout list
Screengrab shows 31-year-old security guard Christian Joseph Floralde directing traffic along Julio Vargas Avenue minutes before he is run over by a white SUV.
Mike Angelo Ramos on Facebook

MANILA, Philippines (Updated 2 2:55 p.m.) — The Department of Justice has placed the driver who ran over a security guard in Mandaluyong City and who has skipped proceedings by the Land Transportation Office under an Immigration Lookout Bulletin Order, which will direct immigration officials to take note of, but not stop, his departure through airports and seaports.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra told reporters Tuesday: "Yes, the DOJ has issued the ILBO at noon today."

As of Tuesday afternoon, Guevarra said that upon checking, there is "no record of departure” from country of San Vicente after the incident.

This was after the prosecutors of Mandaluyong City, following the request of the Philippine National Police as complainants, requested for an order to be issued.

Prosecutor General Benedicto Malcontento said Tuesday that police have filed a frustrated murder complaint against Jose Antonio San Vicente — the registered owner of the SUV involved in the hit-and-run incident — before prosecutors.

He said the complaint has been set for preliminary investigation, and the counsel for the respondent already received the complaint on Monday. Preliminary investigation could lead to an indictment or to a dismissal of the complaint.

Malcontento stressed that the complainant, in this case the police, has to "trigger the request" for an ILBO.

"We are awaiting for these procedural requirements," Malcontento added.

San Vicente cannot be barred from leaving

In this case, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra will issue the potential ILBO. But this order cannot cannot bar a subject from leaving the country in the way that a court-issued hold departure order can.

The lookout order only sets up a mechanism to alert the justice secretary or the prosecutor general if the subject attempts to leave the country.

Prosecutors handling the preliminary investigation of the complaint may also request for a precautionary Hold Departure Order. Like an HDO, only courts can issue this.

A court can issue a PHDO if it determines that there is a high probability that the person to be charged with a crime will leave the country to evade arrest and prosecution.

The HDO, meanwhile, is a power inherent to courts and may be issued against an accused—or someone facing charge before the court.

At this point, Vicente remains a respondent in a criminal complaint undergoing a preliminary investigation.

‘Continuing crime’

Police Lt. Gen. Vicente Danao Jr., PNP officer-in-charge, told DZBB on Tuesday that they want Vicente arrested as he insisted that it is a “continuing crime.”

The Rules of Criminal Procedure provide that a warrantless arrest may only be done if the person has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense; if a crime has just been committed; or if the person is an escaped prisoner. It has been several days since the video of the hit-and-run went viral.

In an earlier Philstar.com report, the Free Legal Assistance Group — commenting on a separate case of an artist arrested without a warrant over a supposedly continuing crime — said the Supreme Court provides that the term “continuing” is intended for determining proper venue or jurisdiction of a crime such as kidnapping.

To recall, the viral dashcam footage uploaded on Facebook shows security guard Christian Joseph Floralde directing traffic along Julia Vargas Avenue and St. Francis Street when a white Toyota RAV 4 registered to San Vicente struck him. Instead of stopping, the driver of the vehicle ran over Floralde again after the guard dropped to his knees.

The driver then sped away.

The 31-year-old security guard is still in the intensive care unit of the VRP Medical Center in Mandaluyong. Per reports, he sustained head injuries and fractured ribs. 

with reports from Franco Luna

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