US senator surprised they couldn’t just visit De Lima
MANILA — Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin "Boying Remulla assured a US delegation his department will not object to any court motion to visit detained former senator Leila de Lima.
DOJ spokesperson lawyer Mico Clavano told ABS-CBN News that De Lima’s detention was discussed during the US delegation’s visit to the DOJ on Thursday, shortly after the Philippine National Police barred the delegation’s visit to De Lima.
“Actually, it was Secretary Remulla who started the conversation actually and he was aware that the senator, the good senator from the US was not able to visit the former senator yesterday in the morning,” Clavano said.
“The senator mentioned and they were actually quite surprised to know that they couldn’t just go and visit. Of course, the secretary reminded them that they had to go through the proper judicial channels, file a motion in court for the visitation rights but Secretary Remulla also made sure to mention that he will not oppose the motion filed in court,” he added.
The Philippine National Police had cited the lack of court approvals in preventing the US congressional delegation, led by US Senator Edward Markey, from entering the PNP Custodial Center in Camp Crame where De Lima has been detained for more than 2,000 days or over 5 years.
The denial prompted De Lima’s lawyers to file an urgent motion to secure court approval for the visit.
Two Muntinlupa courts eventually granted the motion on Friday and the delegation was able to meet with De Lima for more than an hour.