Trillanes blasts Duterte son: I had basis for shabu shipment allegations
MANILA - Opposition Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Wednesday scoffed at libel charges set to be filed against him by former Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte.
President Rodrigo Duterte's son said he will take Trillanes to court for “viciously destroying my name, maligning my reputation and integrity, and for deliberately manufacturing lies and spreading black propaganda against me.”
"This is another frivolous lawsuit that is meant to harass or divert my attention," Trillanes said in an interview on ANC.
"I will face that lawsuit squarely," he added.
Trillanes said that during the Senate hearing, he was able to present circumstantial evidence that linked the younger Duterte to major players tagged in the 6.4 billion shabu shipment from China.
He said Arturo Lascañas, a self-tagged leader of the alleged Davao Death Squad, also linked the younger Duterte to drugs in a separate legislative inquiry.
"Clearly, I had a basis to link his (Paolo Duterte) name in the shabu shipment. It's not as if I just took his name out from thin air and dragged it or linked it in this whole mess," he said.
Trillanes also slammed the Duterte administration for filing "trumped up" charges against opposition lawmakers who have been critical of government programs and policies.
"The Duterte administration has bastardized and weaponized the justice system against the members of the political opposition," Trillanes said.
"They have been finding ways to deal with people like me to muzzle the dissenting voice," he added.
Kidnapping charges were filed against Senator Risa Hontiveros last year for taking custody of the witnesses to the killing of Caloocan teenager Kian Loyd delos Santos.
Drug-related charges were also lodged against Liberal Party Senator Leila de Lima who spearheaded congressional investigations against alleged extrajudicial killings committed under the Duterte administration's war on drugs.