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Ellah Joy Case: Judge Orders Prosecutors To Divulge Dna Test Results


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On Monday July 23, Judge Ester Veloso upheld the Defence Motion by ordering that the prosecution side must submit copies of the DNA Test Results to both the Defence and the Court within five days. These results are those obtained in April last year when bloodstained samples of Bella Santos' bedsheet and (Pajero) seat covers were sent for testing but the results were withheld by the prosecution side as there was no positive match with samples of Ellah Joy's own blood. The prosecutors had steadfastly refused to disclose the results, arguing that they were irrelevant but the Judge took the view that all evidence pertaining to the case must be disclosed. It is not known at this stage whether the Prosecutors will appeal to the Supreme Court to have the Judge's order overturned but the Defence team believes this is unlikely.

Also during Monday's hearing, Richard Bansuan was cross-examined on his testimony and using the two joint affidavits he made with his girlfriend, Ligaya Escultos, and the Court Transcript of his testimony last autumn in RTC13 before Judge Pareides as well as his earlier testimony before Judge Veloso, the defence demonstrated the inconsistencies and provided evidence of blatant lying. So serious is this, in terms of the number of instances, that the defence team is considering filing a case for Perjury against him.

The Hearing will resume on August 7th.

Mark

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Looks like a very very thin case that is falling apart. Thanks for the update. Sure wish they would catch the real killer.

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In other news .... Ian Griffiths is instructing a London firm of Solicitors to set about getting the Interpol Red Notice, which states that he is a fugitive from justice, lifted on human rights grounds. As the Philippines has made absolutely no attempt to seek his extradition from the United Kingdom nor is likely to, the continued posting of the Red Notice is a restriction on his freedom and right to pursue his chosen profession. His application will be made under the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) which is designed to protect citizens from oppressive governance. ECHR is enacted throughout the European Union including France where Interpol is headquartered.

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Despite the Judge's Order some two weeks ago, the DNA test results have not yet been formerly delivered to either the Court or to the Defense. At Tuesday's continuation of the Bail Hearing, the Judge expressed her displeasure and asked Attorney Dela Cerna, who represents CIDG-7, why the Order had not been obeyed and why CIDG-7 had divulged the results at a Press Conference held last week. The Judge was visibly irritated that she should learn of the results in a newspaper article before they were lodged with the Court and Defense counsel. Dela Cerna made some lame excuse firstly claiming that he didn't know any DNA Test results even existed and also that CIDG-7 hadn't received a copy of the Court's Order.

You may have read that a fracas broke-out at the hearing between Dela Cerna and Rameses Villagonzalo, the Defence's Lead counsel, but the press reports did not include the (true) reason for this. Bansuan was being cross-examined by Attorney Entise (Defense) and each and every question was being objected to by Attorney Dela Cerna - and each time the Judge over-ruled him. He even objected to her rulings! Eventually Villagonzalo, who's a softly-spoken and unflappable person, had had enough to the constant objections and a verbal fight broke-out between him and Dela Cerna. This caused the Judge to warn both lawyers however it was clear that she knew who the trouble-maker was.

The Prosecution will be calling its 8th witness, Ligaya Escultos, when the hearing resumes on September 3. She should be the last witness to be called as although the Prosecution has a list of 12 witnesses, the Defense Team has already indicated that the four remaining need not appear as the testimony contained within their affidavits is not contested - none of the four are to be used for identification purposes. In legal jargon, "their testimony is admitted". This, of course, assumes that Ligaya Escultos can be contacted and that she agrees to return to Cebu and appear as a witness. She fled from Cebu because she is afraid that she will be charged with Perjury if she will have to appear in Court. She has good cause to worry.

Edited by Markham
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She fled from Cebu because she is afraid that she will be charged with Perjury if she will have to appear in Court. She has good cause to worry.

Sad to say, probably not. In a recent case we were involved in, one of the witnesses was obviously lying, even the judge took the time to explain how its wrong to lie and he could get into trouble, etc. etc. This continued until the judge excused the witness and we were called into his chambers. He warned that he would 'get upset' if the prosecution brought any more 'low value witnesses' and that the defence was 'giving him a bad impression'. I suggested that we should investigate a charge of perjury, the judge replied 'Bill, its ok, everyone in this court lies, its up to me to figure out which is telling the most truth'. Interesting perspective...

Thanks for keeping us up to date on this débâcle though, it is much appreciated.

Edited by billten
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Ah yes, Ligaya Escultos - she who fled to Manila because she didn't want to be charged with Perjury again - who "fainted" during cross-examination by one of the Defence lawyers. And he hadn't even got going with any of the tough questions. Given the Judge's reaction at the end of the hearing, after the Pique party had left the court (she burst-out laughing), it is pretty clear that the Judge knew Escultos was play-acting. And that's probably why she timetabled an extra hearing for this month.

I've just had an email from the lead Defence lawyer who tells me that he rates her chances of showing-up at the next hearing session this coming Monday at no better than 50-50. The Judge instructed the Prosecutor to bring another witness to court for the next session so that the hearing is not stalled should Escultos fail to present herself. But if she does appear, she will be subjected to very intense questioning over the contents of her Affidavits, her testimony given last week as well as at previous evidential hearings in RTC-13 last year.

Smelling-salts may be required in Judge Veloso's court on Monday morning!

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