Sereno didn't submit Aguirre request for raffle: colleague

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 11 2017 02:42 PM | Updated as of Dec 11 2017 03:26 PM

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Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno acted upon a request of Justice Vitaliano Aguirre for the transfer of cases against Maute gunmen without submitting it first for raffle, contrary to general rules, her colleague said Monday. 

Aguirre wrote to Sereno on May 29, requesting the transfer of the detention and trial of Maute gunmen to Luzon or Visayas. 

The request did not pass through the Supreme Court's raffle committee before it was discussed during a lunch among Sereno and some magistrates on June 6. On the same day, the Chief Justice issued a resolution denying the request, said Associate Justice Teresita Leonardo-De Castro.
 
"There is nothing in the rules that allow her to designate herself as the member in charge... Everything should be referred to the raffle committee," De Castro said during an impeachment hearing against Sereno. 

"It is irregular." 

De Castro also noted that Sereno had 5 days to submit the letter from the time she received it until raffle committee held its regular Monday meeting.

Lawyer Larry Gadon, who filed the impeachment case, earlier accused Sereno of manipulating the raffle of Aguirre's request so it would come out in her favor. 

Aguirre wrote 4 more letters to the high court before its en banc in August ordered Maute suspects to be detained and face trial in Taguig. 

Sereno has denied any wrongdoing and refused to attend the hearings.