Davao RTC issues arrest warrant vs Senator Trillanes

Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte holds a press conference on Sept. 12, 2017 after he was implicated in the P6,4-billion shabu smuggling case. Mindanews file photo

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/ 07 December) – The Regional Trial Court in Davao City on Friday issued an arrest warrant against Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, a staunch critic of the Duterte administration, for four counts of libel filed months ago by former vice mayor Paolo Duterte and brother-in-law lawyer Manases Carpio.

RTC Branch 54 Presiding Judge Melinda Alconcel-Dayanghirang recommended a bail of P24,000 for each count.

On September 6, Duterte and Carpio filed separate libel charges against the opposition lawmaker for alleged malicious remarks.

During a radio interview with Leo Lastimosa of DYAB Cebu on September 8, 2017, Trillanes accused Duterte and Carpio of conspiring with Ahmed Cuison, Land Transportation Regulatory Board Central Visayas director, in extorting from Uber and other similar companies.

The senator accused the two of being involved in corruption and extortion at the Philippine Road Board and Department of Public Works and Highways as part of their supposed corrupt tentacles and “shakedown.”

More charges were filed against Trillanes on September 19 for dragging the presidential son as well as President Rodrigo R. Duterte himself into the P6.4-billion shabu smuggling controversy during a phone patch interview in a news program of CNN Philippines on June 14, 2018.

A shabu shipment from China arrived in the country via the Manila International Container Port in Tondo, Manila on May 16, 2017.

Trillanes had also labelled the two as the principal actors in the illegal drug trade in the city where the President served as mayor for 22 years.

The former vice mayor announced his resignation from his post on December 5, 2017, months after he was implicated in the shabu smuggling controversy.

On October 12, 2018, the younger Duterte filed his candidacy as representative of the first district of the city. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)