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SAF kin, VACC want SC to bring back homicide charges vs Aquino

MANILA, Philippines – Two mothers of elite cops killed in the botched 2015 Mamasapano operation and the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) are set to file a petition urging the Supreme Court (SC) to review the Ombudsman’s alleged “downgrading” of charges against ex-president Benigno Aquino III.

Mothers Felicitas Nacino, Helen Ramacula, and the VACC said in a press conference on Friday, November 3, that they will be filing a petition for the writ of certiorari before the SC to look into Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales’ decision to clear Aquino of charges of reckless imprudence resulting in homicide.

VACC lawyer Ferdinand Topacio said the petition would also “stop further proceedings” in the case involving Aquino, Morales, former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief director-general Alan Purisima, and ex-PNP Special Action Force (SAF) director Getulio Napeñas.

On July 14, the Ombudsman ordered graft and usurpation of authority charges against Aquino over his role in the Mamasapano encounter, and dismissed the other charges against him which included reckless imprudence that resulted in multiple homicide. Graft carries a maximum jail time of 15 years.

Five days later, the VACC and several relatives of the 44 slain SAF members filed a motion for reconsideration before the Ombudsman, insisting that Aquino’s negligence led to the death of the elite cops.

But on September 14, Morales affirmed the graft case against Aquino and once again junked the complaint for 44 counts of reckless imprudence resulting in homicide that was filed against him.

Topacio said they are still completing documents for the filing of the petition, which they intended to do as early as Friday afternoon. Failing this, the VACC will file the petition on Monday, November 6.

The lawyer added the said SC petition will be used by the VACC as another basis for their impeachment complaint against Morales, eyed within November. – Rappler.com

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