PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Monday signified his approval of the move of Solicitor General Jose Calida for the dismissal of serious illegal detention cases filed against alleged suspected pork barrel mastermind Janet Lim Napoles.
“I think he’s right. I agree with [Calida],” Duterte told reporters. “For me, I will move for the dismissal of the case, because it is not our job to persecute. It is our job to prosecute right? It’s just simple justice.”
Duterte, who served as prosecutor in Davao City before being elected mayor of Davao City, said he has done something similar in the past.
“I myself would move for the dismissal of the case, especially if fabricated, planted evidence.”
The OSG filed with the Court of Appeals a “manifestation in lieu of rejoinder” recommending the acquittal of Napoles for the crime of serious illegal detention of her second cousin, Benhur Luy, who is the star whistleblower in the pork barrel cases.
A local court imposed a penalty of life imprisonment on Napoles for the Luy’s illegal detention.
Duterte argued that Luy’s behavior at the time of his supposed illegal detention is questionable.
“For me, and really, the circumstances would show it, he [Luy] was not restrained at all,” Duterte said. “If I were the prosecutor, I would dismiss the case.”
The President refused to comment on Napoles’ role in the pork barrel scam, but insisted on the reassessment of the pork barrel cases since it seemed that not all those involved in the scam were charged before the courts.
“It appears that it was selective. Not all were charged. The criminal actions must proceed against all responsible,” he said.