Janet Lim Napoles' former maid, Dominga Cadelina
MAKATI (2nd UPDATE) - A Makati court on Friday ordered the release of Dominga Cadelina, the househelp of Janet Lim Napoles whom she sent to jail for qualified theft.
Judge Carlito Calpatura of the Makati Regional Trial Court Branch 145 granted Cadelina's freedom after almost 8 months in detention after the Public Attorney's Office moved to withdraw criminal charges filed against her.
Calpatura reasoned that the prosecution failed to prove "the elements of the offense charged, particularly the element of taking and the element of consent by the owner of the things stolen."
He said the "court has no alternative but to dismiss this case without further requiring the accused to present evidence in her defense."
Dominga was sent to jail by the Napoles family in January after accusing her of stealing bags, some underwear and a jacket that allegedly amounted to nearly half a million pesos.
The Public Attorney's Office, which represented Cadelina, believes the charges against Dominga were made up.
PAO lawyers asked the court to dismiss the case and to grant a Demurrer to Evidence or insufficiency of evidence in law, whether true or not.
The amount indicated in the receipts did not match the prices of the stolen goods in the information presented by the prosecution.
Cadelina earlier said that the Napoles family felt bad with her when she sided with pork scam whistleblower Benhur Luy.