MANILA – Malacañang on Saturday welcomed the Supreme Court’s (SC) decision affirming its earlier ruling to allow jailed overseas Filipino worker (OFW) Mary Jane Veloso to testify against her illegal recruiters.
“Nagagalak po kami diyan dahil at least, makikita natin na si Ms. Veloso po ay naging biktima kung tatanggapin yung kaniyang testimoniya (We are delighted [by SC’s decision] because Ms. Veloso will now have the chance to prove that she’s a victim if her testimony would be accepted),” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a virtual press briefing.
On Friday, the high court released its March 4 resolution, denying the motion for reconsideration (MR) filed against its decision allowing Veloso to testify against her illegal recruiters.
The SC affirmed its October 2019 decision to let Veloso testify by way of deposition through written interrogatories against Cristina Sergio and Julius Lacanilao, the two recruiters who sent her to Indonesia.
The high tribunal “denied with finality” the MR filed by Sergio and Lacanilao, stating that they failed to raise a substantial argument that would warrant a reversal of its ruling in October last year.
“No further pleadings, motions, letters, or other communications shall be entertained in this case. Let entry of judgment be issued immediately,” the SC said.
In 2010, Veloso was arrested in an Indonesian airport when authorities found 2.6 kg. of heroin in her luggage.
She was supposed to be executed via firing squad in April 2015 but was given a last-minute reprieve by Jakarta following an appeal from then-president Benigno Aquino III.
The detained OFW claimed that she was a victim of drug trafficking and illegal recruitment.
In October 2019, the SC allowed Veloso to give her testimony against Sergio and Lacanilao.
Last January, Sergio, and Lacanilao were convicted of large-scale illegal recruitment in a case involving three other Filipina victims. Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos / PNA – northboundasia.com