Freddie Aguilar with his 16-year-old girlfriend. File photo
Music legend says ready to face complaint
MANILA -- Freddie Aguilar is now facing qualified seduction charges over his relationship with a 16-year-old girl, who has vowed to stand by the "Anak" hitmaker amid mounting criticisms against the relationship.
The complaint was filed Thursday by Atty. Fernando Perito, a member of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines, before the Quezon City Prosecutor's Office.
Perito, in his two-page complaint, said he is "angered, offended and scandalized" by Aguilar going public with his relationship, which he candidly admitted early this month in a media interview.
The lawyer also called Aguilar a "sex-hungry child predator" and a "cradle snatcher," who he believes to be merely sexually attracted to his teen girlfriend.
The complainant expressed doubt as to Aguilar's professed love for the girl, as seen in their rounds of interview since confirming the five-month-old relationship.
In defending anew the relationship, Aguilar told radio DZMM he has the consent of the girl's parents, who are based in Naujan, Oriental Mindoro.
Referring to this supposed consent, Perito asserted in his complaint that the girl's parents should also be slapped with appropriate legal charges.
Responding to the complaint against him, Aguilar on Thursday afternoon said he is not acquainted with Perito. The same was confirmed by the lawyer with dzMM's Robert Mano in an earlier interview.
"Haharapin po natin 'yung kaso kung meron po," Aguilar told radio dzMM. "Kung meron po, bakit hindi ko haharapin. Kung hindi ko haharapin 'yan, parang tinanggap ko na tama 'yung ginagawa nila."
Admitting he has yet to tap a lawyer concerning the case, Aguilar said he has been approached by several of his friends offering legal assistance.
The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), separate from Perito's legal step, earlier launched an investigation into Aguilar's controversial relationship.
Social Welfare Assistant Secretary Florita Villar, in an interview with ABS-CBN News early this week, said the agency is seeking to speak with the concerned parties to have a "better understanding of the situation."
Aguilar on Thursday said the DSWD has already spoken with his girlfriend's parents. "Sinabi na po ng magulang ni [girlfriend] na may basbas po ang pagmamahalan namin," he said.
"Pumunta na po sila doon... Nag-text din po sa amin 'yung nanay at tatay ni [girlfriend] na sinasabing kasama po namin sila na ipaglalaban 'yung pagmamahalan namin," Aguilar said.
The couple earlier said they are planning to wed in two years, when the girl turns 18. Aguilar also openly shared their plans of building a family of their own.
Asked for his girlfriend's reaction to the qualified seduction charges against him, Aguilar said, "Syempre, nasasaktan siya... Ang lumalabas para bang kilalang-kilala nila (critics) 'yung girlfriend ko, sinasabing sinagot lang ako kesyo gusto ng pera, gusto sumikat, gusto ng ganyan, na wala naman pong katotohanan."
Aguilar, who separated from his third wife a decade ago, has six children. His youngest, named Jeriko, is 24 years old.
The singer's girlfriend is turning 17 on November 29. -- with a report from Robert Mano, dzMM