MANILA - The Supreme Court (SC) has suspended Atty. Elly Pamatong from the practice of law for two years over his "slanderous" language against a judge whom he accused of committing corrupt acts.
In a press briefing on Tuesday, SC spokesperson Atty. Theodore Te said Pamatong's suspension stems from his allegations of corruption against Judge Gregorio Pantanosas Jr.
Te said, during a court proceeding for a civil case where Pamatong was appearing as counsel, Pantanosas had asked him to remove his headwear. Pamatong, however, refused, citing religious grounds.
The judge obliged but warned that he will no longer allow it next time.
Pamatong then filed a motion for inhibition where he "excoriated" the judge for supposedly being corrupt, Te said.
"In my 30 years of law practice, I never encountered a judge who appears to be as corrupt as you are, thereby giving me the impression that you are a disgrace to the judicial system of the land who does not deserve to be a member of the Philippine Bar at all," a part of the lawyer's motion read.
Pantanosas refuted all of Pamatong's allegations and denied his motion for inhibition. He also filed a disbarment complaint against the lawyer before the SC, citing the language he used in his motion.
The Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) recommended that Pamatong be suspended from law practice for one year, but the SC ruled that he shall be suspended for a period of two years.
The high court also sternly warned that a "more severe sanction" shall be imposed if he commits the same offense, Te added.