wins not only when the guilty are
convicted but when criminal trials are
Saying false premises may cost the life
of an innocent man, the lawyers of Francisco Juan "Paco" Larra�aga
have asked the Supreme Court to "revisit" the sensational case.
"Unfortunately, the Office of the Solicitor General refused to meet
these issues and merely relied on the blanket but unjustified
assertion," the lawyers said.
Lawyer Ordo�ez, Chua and Coronel said the high tribunal must revisit its decision "because certain facts on which the court based its resolution to impose the death penalty are not accord with the records. "
"We wanted answers to
many of our doubts. The OSG skirted the issues, gave no explanations, and
merely praised the correctness of the disputed decision," they
By filling the motion for reconsideration, Larra�aga's lawyers requested the SC justices to give the questioned decision "a second look, a more thorough review.
October 25, 2006
The lawyers said they had painstakingly raised 11 points that should be
looked into by the high court.
On top of their questions was the conduct of the late Judge Martin
Ocampo, who, they claimed, "bullied the defense" by disallowing
their scheduled witnesses and pronouncing the defense to have waived the
presentation of further evidence.
"No less than Larra�aga raised and waived his hands in one of the
hearings to express his desire to testify," they said, "but the
court did not relent and refused to hear his testimony."
"It was proper for the movant to question the validity of the court's
reliance on the findings of a trial judge who was not interested in what the
accused had to say or to observe his demeanor on the stand," they said.
lawyers said Ocampo had "made up his mind on what weight he would give
Larra�aga's testimony even before he heard it and despite the fact that he
did not hear it."
insisted that it was physically impossible for Larra�aga to be in
During the trial of the case, defense lawyers insisted that on the evening
of July 16, 1997, Larra�aga was with his friends at R & R Restaurant,
and stayed there until the early morning of July 17.
we going to send six young men to the death chamber on the say-so of a drug
addict and a convicted criminal? Is the trial judge correct in placing
greater weight on Rusia's word over that of an entire class of law-abiding
students who vouched for Larra�aga's presence in their cooking school in
Quezon City?" they said.
confession came out almost 10 months after the alleged kidnapping. He then
tailored his confession to conform to the physical evidence, Larra�aga's
the result of the examination of University of the
Bailen said there was neither physical evidence to conclude that the woman was raped nor proof that she had been thrown off a cliff while still alive, as claimed by witness Rusia.