Former SMC lawyer is new deputy Ombudsman


Posted at Jul 08 2011 06:52 PM | Updated as of Jul 09 2011 08:29 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Lawyer Francis Jardeleza has been appointed by President Benigno Aquino III as new deputy Ombudsman for Luzon, a Palace official said Friday.

New Deputy Ombudsman for Luzon Francis Jardeleza. Photo courtesy of Newsbreak

Jardeleza is replacing Mark Jalandoni, an aide of former Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez, whom the Office of the Ombudsman placed under investigation for alleged tampering of government documents.

He was among 4 nominees of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) for the position.

Jed Eva III, assistant secretary of the Office of the Executive Secretary, said Jardeleza's appointment papers were received by the Supreme Court at 5:10 p.m. Friday.

"The announcement of the same has been cleared by Executive Secretary (Jojo Ochoa)," Eva said.

Jardeleza, a native of Jaro, Iloilo City, graduated cum laude at the University of the Philippines College of Law in Diliman, Quezon City in 1974. He placed third in the 1974 Bar exams, garnering a general average of 88.35%.

He secured his Master of Laws at Harvard Law School in Massachusetts, U.S.A. in 1977.

Jardeleza joined the Angara Abello Concepcion Regala and Cruz (ACCRALAW) in 1975 and became the law firm's partner in 1981.

"He was the only junior partner allowed to be a member of both the Litigation and Corporate (Special Projects) Departments. In 1986, he became chairman of the ACCRALAW Litigation Department," according to his resumé sent by Malacañang to media.

After earning a Master of Laws degree at Harvard Law School, Jardeleza trained in securities, litigation and public offerings as a foreign associate in the New York City law firm of Sullivan and Cromwell.

He left ACCRALAW in 1987 and founded Jardeleza Sobreviñas Diaz Hayudini and Bodegon, where he started practicing labor law. In 1990, he established the Jardeleza Law Offices as a solo practice.

In 1992, he joined Roco Buñag Kapunan Migallos and Jardeleza, as partner, where he headed the litigation and labor law practice groups.

Jardeleza became senior vice-president and general counsel of food and beverage giant San Miguel Corporation (SMC) from 1996 to 2010. He handled labor cases, mergers and acquisitions, corporate restructuring, securities, intellectual property and corporate governance with SMC.

"His varied exposure has enabled him to gain a wide experience in litigation, appearing before the regional trial courts and administrative agencies (e.g., Securities and Exchange Commission)," the Palace said. "He was a ranking member of the team involved in the proxy, corporate and boardroom contests and later litigation chronicled in Gokongwei v. San Miguel Corporation, 89 SCRA 336 (1979)."

The Palace said Jardeleza was a top litigator, writing briefs and later arguing before the Supreme Court the case of Bank of America, N.T. v. Court of Appeals, 186 SCRA 417 (1990). 

Jardeleza also served on the boards of several local and foreign corporations.

Jardeleza also did pro bono work, successfully securing a Supreme Court injunction to lift a hold departure order on Marites Dañguilan-Vitug, which allowed the journalist  to pursue a masteral degree in the United Kingdom.

He is also a professor in Constitutional Law at the UP College of Law, where he has been a professorial lecturer since 1993.  He is likewise a trustee of the UP Law Alumni Foundation and a member of the UP Law Centennial Commission.