MANILA - Three of the five charged with serious illegal detention in connection with the January 22 mauling of Vhong Navarro finally faced the actor on Tuesday at the Taguig Regional Trial Court, which issued the arrest warrants for the non-bailable offense.
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Model Deniece Cornejo arrived at 7:45 a.m. at the Taguig court from her detention cell at the Anti-Transnational Crime Unit of the PNP-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group at Camp Crame in Quezon City.
Cornejo surrendered to the Philippine National Police at around 4 p.m. Monday, two weeks after the arrest warrants for serious illegal detention were released.
Cornejo faced Judge Paz Esperanza Cortes to determine whether she will continue to be detained at the PNP headquarters or in Taguig.
One of Cornejo's lawyers, Atty. Coney Aquino, earlier said their camp is planning to file a petition for bail in the serious illegal detention case for supposed lack of evidence against her client.
Meanwhile, Cornejo's co-accused, Cedric Lee and Simeon Raz, were brought from their detention facility at the National Bureau of Investigation headquarters to the Taguig RTC at 12:15 p.m.
The two were arrested last April 25 in Oras, Eastern Samar for the same non-bailable offense, after weeks in hiding.
Lee and Raz were at the Taguig court on Tuesday to attend the hearing for their petition for bail.
The court also held Cornejo's arraignment, and the pre-trial for the grave coercion and serious illegal detention charges.
Navarro arrived at the same place past noon, accompanied by his legal counsel, Atty. Alma Mallonga. Like the three accused in the criminal case, Navarro's camp declined media requests for comment.
The actor, who left the Taguig RTC at around 4:40 p.m, only thanked those who have supported him since the controversy erupted in January.
Aside from Cornejo, Lee, and Raz, arrest warrants for serious illegal detention were issued against Ferdinand Guerrero and Jed Fernandez, who both remain at large. -- Reports from Henry Atuelan, DZMM; Jeff Canoy, Ginger Conejero, Jerome Lantin, Carolyn Bonquin, Francis Faulve, ABS-CBN News