Trillanes can be charged with inciting to sedition: prosecutors

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 15 2018 02:35 PM | Updated as of Mar 15 2018 03:57 PM

Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV gives a statement during a press conference at the Philippine Senate on Sept. 11, 2017. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA (UPDATE) - There is enough evidence to charge Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV with inciting to sedition, state prosecutors said, citing a speech wherein he allegedly urged soldiers to kill President Rodrigo Duterte.

The complaint, which was filed by a lawyers' group, cited Trillanes' speech at the Senate last Oct. 3, where he revealed alleged evidence of the President's unexplained wealth.

The senator supposedly said in his speech: "Kung makikita ito ng mga sundalo, M60 machine gun ang gagamitin sa 'yo. Marami-rami itom maubos magazine kung P40 million hinahanap mo Mr. Duterte."

(If only soldiers could see this, they will use an M60 machine gun on you. These are many. The magazines will be emptied if you're looking for P40 million, Mr. Duterte.)

Pasay City prosecutor Joahna Gabatino-Lim added that Trillanes enticed the people to sign a petition to pressure the President to do certain acts and make it appear that Duterte amassed ill-gotten wealth.

Trillanes' supposed pronouncement of "Ang total na laman na pumasok sa account ay mahigit P2 billion (In total, P2 billion went into the account)" tended to "create in the minds of public a feeling hatred and disgust" towards the President and the government, the prosecutor said.

Trillanes on Thursday said he would face the charges and denied inciting violence against the President.

"Maliwanag na baluktot at panggigipit itong kasong ito na nakabase sa privilege speech ko sa Senado na bukod na sa merong constitutionally guaranteed immunity from suit, ay wala akong inincite na kung sino to do anything," he said.

(This is clearly twisted. This case is harassment, based on a privilege speech at the Senate where I have immunity from suit. I did not incite anyone to do anything.)

Prosecutors have recommended a P12,000 bail bond.

The senator had dared the President to sign a waiver on his bank accounts to prove that he has no secret deposits.

Duterte earlier accused Trillanes of keeping bank accounts in different countries and later claimed that it was a ploy to catch the senator.

Trillanes, also in his Oct. 3 speech, dismissed the President's claim that he had bank accounts in Singapore, China, Hong Kong, Australia, and the United States.

-with a report from Raffy Santos, ABS-CBN News