|Former actress Marjorie Barretto. Photo from Julia Barretto's Instagram account
MANILA – The legal counsel of Marjorie Barretto has confirmed that the woman in the scandalous photos which made the rounds in the Internet over the weekend is indeed the former actress.
In an interview with ABS-CBN News on Tuesday, Atty. Lorna Kapunan said Barretto is “very upset” about the photos.
“She’s a mother, she’s very upset. She’s not running for any public office precisely because she wants to guard her privacy. She has growing up daughters and ang concern niya is they are in the formative years where they understand. That’s why we are also respecting the media na sana huwag na interviewhin si Marj,” she said.
Kapunan said this matter “should remain within the family and what pictures she may have should remain private.”
Thus Kapunan is appealing to the public to stop uploading or reposting Marjorie’s alleged photos so they will not be forced to file legal charges.
“RA 9995, mayroon tayong tinatawag na Anti-Photo and Video Voyeurism Act. It is a crime under the Bible. It is a fair warning. Nobody has ever filed a case under 9995 and hopefully they do not test us because we are here to see that the law is implemented,” the lawyer said.
Kapunan said they have already identified all the people who posted the photos and they will definitely take legal actions against them if they don’t put it down.
“We have the addresses of all the bloggers, and we have sent you demand letters and this is a fair warning to you guys that the penalty is P100,000 to P500,000 plus imprisonment of three years to seven years or both,” she said.
‘Motives are suspect’
Meanwhile, Kapunan said that while the spread of the photos is separate from the ongoing Barretto family feud, “it comes at the time where motives are suspect.”
The photos were made public just a week after the Barretto matriarch publicly disowned daughter Gretchen Barretto while defending her other daughter Claudine.
Although Marjorie has remained mum about their mother's statement about Gretchen, showbiz observers believe that the feud stemmed partly from comments on the image-sharing service Instagram, supposedly made by Gretchen, saying that her sister Claudine is not happy that their niece, Julia, is starting to make a name for herself in showbiz.
Julia, the daughter of Marjorie, was recently introduced as an artist of Star Magic, the ABS-CBN talent management firm that launched Claudine to stardom until her transfer to another network in 2009.
“It is enough that there is so much publicity on the family already because of sibling squabble. This one is separate and it comes at the time where motives are suspect,” Kapunan told ABS-CBN News.
“Nothing is more valuable than your private reputation, nothing is more valuable than your family, and nothing is more valuable than your children. In the case of Marjorie, she has daughters so she’s appealing -- regardless of what the moral judgment on the situation of the parties are concerned – to keep it private,” she added.
Barretto initially denied that she was the woman in the sexy photos.