Jalosjos still disqualified to run for elective post — CA PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 01 March 2014 18:13

The Court of Appeals (CA) has ruled that former Zamboanga del Norte Rep. Romeo Jalosjos remains disqualified to run for any elective office.

In a 12-page ruling written by Associate Justice Pedro Corales, the CA’s 15th Division denied for lack of merit the appeal filed by Jalosjos.

The CA upheld the Feb. 21, 2013 order of the Muntinlupa City Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 206 dismissing the petition for mandamus filed by Jalosjos.

Concurring in the ruling were Associate Justices Mariflor Punzalan Castillo and Amy Lazaro-Javier.

The appeal arose from the re-arrest of Jalosjos a day after he walked out of the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) and flew to his hometown in Zamboanga del Norte.

Jalosjos was sentenced to serve two life terms for raping an 11-year-old girl.

He was granted executive clemency by then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo after serving only 13 years in prison and was given a certificate of discharge on Dec. 16, 2007.

Jalosjos returned to the NBP upon learning that then Justice Secretary Raul M. Gonzalez was suspending his release through a resolution.

The Department of Justice (DOJ) learned that Jalosjos was supposed to be freed in 2009, when he turned 70, and not on Dec. 16, 2007.

In the CA ruling, it said that Jalosjos failed to establish the existence of DOJ’s ministerial duty to correct his prison records.

Citing a Supreme Court (SC) decision, the CA said that “the effectivity of the accessory penalty of perpetual absolute disqualification does not depend on the duration of the principal penalty or on whether the convict serves his jail sentence or not.”

The CA added that Jalosjos’ claims were already moot and academic.