Atty. Howard Calleja, the lawyer of model Deniece Cornejo and businessman Cedric Lee, on Friday appealed to the Department of Justice (DOJ) not to allow media coverage in the second preliminary investigation (PI) hearing into the criminal charges filed by actor-host Vhong Navarro against his clients.
Calleja said his clients were already feeling harassed due to the members of the press who were continuously taking pictures of them during the proceedings.
"To be honest, we understand each other's works but...if we are going to be in front of this panel with all these cameras in front of us, technically it's close to harassment, not even respecting the rights of the respondents or the accused," he said.
The DOJ, for its part, said they will not send media out of the venue, but appealed to the news crew to observe proper decorum and not to go too close to Lee and Cornejo.
Also in attendance at the hearing were Lee's sister, Bernice, and Zimmer Raz. The two were also tagged in the mauling of Navarro in the condominium unit of Cornejo in Taguig last January 22.
The "It's Showtime" host, who was not present, was represented by his lawyer, Atty. Alma Mallonga.
Navarro sued Lee's group for serious physical injuries, grave threat, grave coercion, unlawful arrest, blackmail, and serious illegal detention, which is a non-bailable offense.
Cornejo, meanwhile, filed a rape complaint against Navarro.