MANILA - Detained model Deniece Cornejo has written a letter to President Benigno Aquino, according to journalist Tony Calvento.
In a Facebook post on Monday night, Calvento shared Cornejo's letter to the President, wherein she explained the 23rd birthday celebration she held in detention on June 1.
"I'm still an innocent person, even as I have been charged of serious illegal detention, as guaranteed by our Constitution," Cornejo said, according to the letter.
"I feel I'm entitled to marking these important youthful dates of my life with my family, friends, and relatives who came all the way from America and provinces especially that I'm experiencing difficult times," it added.
"With all due respect I didn't asked (sic) for any special treatment or privilege. [A]ll that I wanted was to hold a Sunday worship and thanksgiving since its [sic] Sunday and its (sic) family day," the letter said.
It said that for her birthday in jail, Cornejo invited a pastor of a Christian ministry where she belongs "to spread the Word of God and spiritual enrichment of our lives."
The letter said she had no control over her guest and other well-wishers, who brought birthday balloons and softdrinks to her detention cell at the Anti-Transnational Crime Unit (ATCU) of the PNP-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group at Camp Crame in Quezon City.
"I'm aware of my limitations and in fact I did not leave the premises of the CIDG," it added.
The undated letter was signed "Deniece Milinette Cornejo."
The Palace has yet to comment on the letter.
Cornejo has been arrested and charged for the serious illegal detention of actor Vhong Navarro.
Cornejo reportedly celebrated her birthday with around 20 guests, including relatives and family members, inside the PNP-CIDG's ATCU office.
Former pageant contestant Roxanne Cabanero, who, like Cornejo, accused Navarro of raping her, was reportedly among those who attended the event.
The celebration had balloons and a poster with the words "We love you Deniece."
A CIDG official told radio MM that the gathering was merely a "fellowship" and not a party, as there was neither singing nor alcoholic beverages.
Asked for a comment on the gathering, ATCU chief Senior Supt. John Guyguyon said he was not aware of it as he was on leave when it happened.
Cornejo, along with her co-accused in the January 22 mauling of Navarro, are currently facing trial for the serious illegal detention charge. -- with a report from Edwin Sevidal, dzMM