courts in the Philippines - updates

Rappler's latest stories on courts in the Philippines


8th petition vs anti-terror law attacks 'subjective' definition of terroristic dissent

Jul 13, 2020 - 5:56 PM

The Sanlakas party list says Section 4's supposed exemption on dissent must be struck down for being too vague and subjective

8TH PETITION. Progressive group Sanlakas files the 8th petition vs the anti-terror law before the Supreme Court on July 13, 2020. Photo courtesy of Sanlakas

Supreme Court hands off in DOJ's stricter drug plea bargain rules

Jul 13, 2020 - 2:15 PM

Dissenting Justice Benjamin Caguioa says the Supreme Court's efforts to declog court dockets of small-time drug cases will be put to waste

Over 43,000 prisoners released via videoconference hearings since March

Jul 08, 2020 - 9:19 PM

The court administrator reports that 43,171 persons deprived of liberty have been released from March 17 to July 3. The figure also includes children in conflict with the law.

'Overly deferential': How Supreme Court shielded Duterte from disclosing health

Jul 08, 2020 - 8:49 PM

Justices come up with all sorts of arguments to favor Duterte in the health petition, and dissenting Justice Caguioa says it 'clearly signals an overly deferential attitude to a sitting President'

Constitution framers, Ateneo professors file 6th petition vs anti-terror law

Jul 08, 2020 - 4:26 PM

'Given the pattern of imputation by the executive and the nature of accusations, the exercise of our fundamental freedom of expression and freedom of association has to be protected'

6TH PETITION. Ateneo Human Rights Center (AHRC) lawyers Marianne Agunoy, Paula Villarin and Paula Estrella, also co-petitioners, file the 6th petition vs the anti-terror law before the Supreme Court on July 8, 2020. Photo courtesy of AHRC

Duterte's ex-OGCC chief Jurado is 5th to petition vs anti-terror law

Jul 08, 2020 - 11:37 AM

Jurado anchors his petition on the railroad of the bill in Congress, and says the rush to passage violates constitutional standards

5TH PETITIONER. Duterte's former government corporate counsel Rudolf Jurado files on July 8, 2020, the 5th petition against the anti-terror law. Sourced photo

Supreme Court affirms dismissal of Enrile libel suit vs columnist

Jul 07, 2020 - 1:50 PM

Former senator Juan Ponce Enrile filed a libel suit against newspaper columnist Yoly Villanueva Ong in 2012 for an opinion article about his Martial Law days and his son's senatorial bid

LIBEL SUIT. Former senator Juan Ponce Enrile suffers a loss at the Supreme Court with its affirmation of a Court of Appeals dismissal of his libel suit against Yoly Villanueva-Ong. Photo by Darren Pangit

More petitions to come: Supreme Court battle vs anti-terror law starts

Jul 06, 2020 - 8:45 AM

(5th UPDATE) By Rappler's count, there are at least 8 groups filing petitions to void provisions of the anti-terror law

Atty. Mel Sta. Maria and professors of Far Eastern University Law file a Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition at the Supreme Court in Manila on July 6, 2020 to challenge the constitutionality of 13 provisions of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020.

Where is the Supreme Court's full decision junking Duterte health case?

Jul 04, 2020 - 7:32 PM

Two months have passed, and even the petitioner has not yet received the full decision that would explain why the justices dismissed his petition

PRESIDENT. President Rodrigo Duterte delivers a speech before military commanders of the Western Mindanao Command in Zamboanga City on July 3, 2020, his first public event since the pandemic. Screenshot courtesy of RTVM

SC urged: Compel Duterte gov’t to conduct ‘mass testing’

Jul 03, 2020 - 12:34 PM

Petitioners led by former social welfare secretary Judy Taguiwalo also ask the High Court to compel the government to ramp up contact tracing efforts and release timely, accurate, and complete information on the pandemic

RIGHT TO HEALTH. Petitioners file a petition for mandamus asking the Supreme Court to compel the government to do free mass testing. Sourced photo RIGHT TO HEALTH. Petitioners file a petition for mandamus asking the Supreme Court to compel the government to do free mass testing. Sourced photo

SC's deference to Congress on same-sex union 'dooms marriage equality'

Jun 30, 2020 - 3:25 PM

A paper published by UP Law criticizes the 2019 decision of the Supreme Court junking a same-sex marriage petition mainly due to technicalities, and says it was 'an abdication of its function as a Court'

MARRIAGE EQUALITY. LGBTQ members light candles as they gather outside the Supreme Court in Manila on June 19, 2018 for the on-going oral arguments regarding the petition for same sex marriage. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Leonen's speech vs complicity trends as SC battles doubts on its independence

Jun 25, 2020 - 11:57 PM

A usual dissenter who once called out fellow justices for emboldening the rise of an authoritarian, Justice Marvic Leonen tells new lawyers about the dangers of keeping silent and being complicit

'DO NOT BE COMPLICIT' Supreme Court Associate Justice Marvic Leonen's 23-minute speech to new lawyers who took their oath on June 25, 2020, trended on Twitter for hours. Screenshot from Supreme Court

WATCH: 'Resist injustice:' Justice Leonen's speech at lawyers' oath taking

Jun 25, 2020 - 9:08 PM

'Silence about corruption and abuse of power is not only in itself unjust; our silence when we have the ability to speak is in itself a cause of injustice,' says Associate Justice Marvic Leonen

ROUSING SPEECH. Associate Justice Marvic Leonen delivers a rousing speech to lawyers who took their oath on June 25, 2020. Photo courtesy of the SC Public Information Office

Supreme Court to do pilot test for computerized Bar exams

Jun 25, 2020 - 4:32 PM

2020 Bar chair Justice Leonen also says the Court must take a hard look at the Bar exams and 'make its practices more reasonable'

BAR EXAMS. Aspiring lawyers are greeted by supporters as they take the last day of the 2019 Bar Exams at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila on Sunday, November 24. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Supreme Court fires Palace cameraman for unsolicited knee touch on female colleague

Jun 24, 2020 - 1:51 PM

'Unsolicited physical contact, even if done in jest, has no place in the workplace, especially in government service,' says the Supreme Court Second Division, but it retains the finding of guilt for simple misconduct, rather than grave misconduct

Supreme Court of the Philippines in PAdre Faura on June 19, 2018. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

'Too many are sick and dying': Supreme Court defers deciding on prisoner release

Jun 23, 2020 - 2:36 PM

Prison agencies are also slammed for little transparency on the conditions of inmates

PRISONER RELEASE. Marites Asis, mother of 23-year-old pregnant political prisoner Reina Mae Nasino, goes to the Supreme Court to plead for a humanitarian prisoner release amid the pandemic. Photo courtesy of Kapatid

Supreme Court junks Calida's quo warranto vs ABS-CBN Corp for being moot

Jun 23, 2020 - 1:21 PM

(UPDATED) The case against ABS-CBN Convergence remains. ABS-CBN's shutdown is also still in effect.

SHUT. The National Telecommunications Commission(NTC) has issued a cease and desist order to the giant network ABS-CBN effective immediately. May 5, 2020. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Supreme Court affirms condo dues not subject to tax

Jun 18, 2020 - 4:35 PM

The Supreme Court says association dues and other assessment charges do not form part of a condominium corporation's gross income

NOT TAXABLE. The Supreme Court nullfied a 2012 Bureau of Internal Revenue circular which taxes association dues. File photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

[ANALYSIS] The Anti-Terror Act is worse than Martial Law

Jun 18, 2020 - 3:07 PM

'[The Anti-Terror Act] is authorized to order the arrest of any person even if he or she has not committed any crime of terrorism'

'Vote for life': Kapatid urges SC to act on petition for prisoners' release

Jun 17, 2020 - 1:25 PM

'We pray that the Supreme Court will choose to vote for life in favor of the most vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic now invading prison facilities,' says Kapatid spokesperson Fides Lim

VOTE FOR LIFE. Families of political prisoners troop to the Supreme Court on Tuesday, June 17, to ask justices to immediately act on the petition filed for the release of prisoners most at risk to the coronavirus. Photo courtesy of KAPATID

Can Supreme Court under Peralta repeat Arroyo-time judicial activism?

Jun 11, 2020 - 9:02 PM

The Court created a human rights committee under Sereno, but Peralta says he is yet to 'look into it'

THE CHIEF JUSTICE. Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta gestures as he answers questions during the meeting of the members of the media at Supreme Court on November 8, 2019. Photo by Lito Borras/Rappler

Stranded justice delays resolution of petition to free vulnerable prisoners

Jun 11, 2020 - 1:11 PM

Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta says he 'believes' the case can be decided by June 16. As of latest data, there are 745 confirmed cases in BJMP and 194 cases in BuCor.

CONGESTED. This photo taken on March 27, 2020 shows prison inmates at the crowded courtyard of the Quezon City jail in Manila. Photo by Maria TAN / AFP

Supreme Court deliberations on ABS-CBN set for July 13

Jun 11, 2020 - 12:14 PM

Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta is not certain if there will be a resolution by July 13, despite ABS-CBN's urgent request for a temporary restraining order

SHUT DOWN. The National Telecommunications Commission(NTC) issues a cease and desist order to the giant network ABS-CBN that shut down the network on May 5, 2020. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

WATCH: Chief Justice Peralta meets the press online

Jun 11, 2020 - 9:03 AM

Bookmark this page to watch the virtual press conference of Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta at 9 am, Thursday, June 11

FIRST EVER. The annual Chief Justice Meets The Press will be held online for the first time.

Carpio: Once a law, anti-terror bill can be questioned in court right away

Jun 04, 2020 - 12:36 PM

(UPDATED) The old law allows warrantless arrest only as a result of surveillance. The new bill does not provide such limitation.

Groups from different sectors belonging to the militant Bayan, stage a protest caravan and noise barrage outside the gates of Congress on June 3, 2020, demanding the scrapping of the Anti Terrorism Bill that has been recently approved in Congress. President Duterte certified the bill as urgent. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

Are PH courts truly ready for digital transformation post-lockdown?

Jun 03, 2020 - 7:02 PM

Courts grapple with internet problems and lack of public transport for personnel. Questions also abound on how strict judicial rules can accommodate digital processes.

Back on Full Operation. The Supreme Court is back on full operation starting today, the first day of the General Community Quarantine in the National Capital Region (NCR). SC employees who form part of the skeleton staff return to the Supreme Court Compound in Padre Faura, Manila to report for work today as the SC begins full operation since March 16, 2020. The SC continues to conduct rapid testing among its employees. As of May 29, 2020, a total of 1,698 personnel have undergone rapid testing. Conducted by the medical personnel of the Court who were provided with personal protective equipment (PPE), the rapid testing will take place daily until such time that all the more than 2,700 employees have undergone rapid antibody testing. (Courtesy of the SC Public Information Office)

Courts outside Metro Manila ask SC for rapid testing too

Jun 03, 2020 - 1:18 PM

In Metro Manila, Associate Justice Marvic Leonen says some Metro Manila judges refused rapid testing which to him is 'a very grave disappointment'

RAPID TESTING. Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta inspects the rapid testing done at the Supreme Court compound on May 26, 2020. Photo courtesy of SC Public Information Office

SC junks Gadon case vs ABS-CBN, but hardly a win for still shut network

Jun 02, 2020 - 5:05 PM

Larry Gadon's thrown-out petition hardly does anything for the embattled network as its bid to go back on air is still in the pleadings process

SCOLDED. Supreme Court scolds Larry Gadon over a petition he filed against ABS-CBN. Photo by Rappler

Makabayan rep wants to cite Topacio in contempt in Supreme Court writs case

May 30, 2020 - 8:55 PM

Lawyer Ferdinand Topacio says the contempt request is 'egregious,' as the government crackdown on the Left reaches the High Court

YOUNGEST REP. Kabataan Partylist Sarah Elago says age shouldn't be a hindrance when it comes to public service. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

SC applicants doubt ABS-CBN can get remedy from High Court

May 28, 2020 - 8:45 PM

In several questions throughout the Judicial and Bar Council interview, the applicants agree that ABS-CBN's fate is mostly up to Congress

ONLINE INTERVIEW. CA Justice Edwin Sorongon is interviewed via Zoom by the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) in a first ever online interview for the search of a new Supreme Court justice. Screenshot from JBC

Milestone or proof case not urgent? Explaining SC's show cause order vs leftists

May 28, 2020 - 1:14 PM

The show cause order is considered a preliminary citation, when in other cases for habeas corpus and amparo, parties immediately got the writs

EXTRAORDINARY REMEDIES. Petitions for the extraordinary writs of amparo and habeas corpus are brought to the Supreme Court. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

Internet cafe for lawyers? How PH justice system will cope with new normal

May 27, 2020 - 4:26 PM

It will be a digital transformation, says the Supreme Court, but how will it make sure that every litigant has equal access to technology?

JBC makes Supreme Court stints minimum of 2.5 years

May 24, 2020 - 6:10 PM

The Judicial and Bar Council sets new rules, but faces questions on constitutionality

Supreme Court calls out judge over birthday party in chambers

May 19, 2020 - 6:09 PM

The Office of the Court Administrator is tasked to determine if there are quarantine violations

HIGH COURT. Supreme Court of the Philippines in Padre Faura on June 19, 2018. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

Still no TRO vs ABS-CBN cease and desist order

May 19, 2020 - 11:27 AM

(3rd UPDATE) The Supreme Court gives the National Telecommunications Commission 10 days to comment on the ABS-CBN petition against the NTC order

FRANCHISE. ABS CBN talents and artists hold a protest on February 28, 2020, to call for the renewal of the network's franchise. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

ABS-CBN pleads SC: Provisional franchise takes time, let us air now

May 18, 2020 - 2:21 PM

'ABS-CBN, its employees, various stakeholders, and the general public will continue to suffer grave and irreparable injury as a result of the Cease and Desist Order issued by the NTC'

CEASE AND DESIST. The National Telecommunications Commission(NTC) issues a cease and desist order to the giant network ABS-CBN effective immediately on May 5, 2020. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Courts in GCQ areas to physically reopen starting May 18

May 16, 2020 - 4:37 PM

Only a skeleton staff shall report to work even in GCQ, says the Supreme Court

EASING INTO GCQ. Food establishments along Session Road in Baguio City gradually open, but all for takeout and delivery services only, as the city works through under the general community quarantine from may 16 to 31 as per city govt guidelines. Photo by Mau Victa/Rappler

Pilot courts nationwide can now do virtual hearings for all matters

May 14, 2020 - 3:51 PM

All courts in Metro Manila are authorized to do hearings via video conferencing

VIRTUAL HEARING. One of the pilot courts conduct a virtual hearing as Philippines remains on variying forms of lockdown to contain the coronavirus pandemic. Photo courtesy of the Supreme Court

Videoconference hearings lead to release of 4,683 prisoners in a week

May 10, 2020 - 7:50 PM

'We expect a lot more courts to conduct hearings through videoconferencing this coming week that may result [in] more releases of [persons deprived of liberty],' says Court Administrator Midas Marquez

'The digital court is not so far away'

May 10, 2020 - 8:55 AM

The pandemic leaves the Supreme Court no other choice

ONLINE EN BANC. The Supreme Court en banc holds an online session on May 8, 2020, for the retirement ceremony of Associate Justice Andres Reyes Jr. Photo courtesy of SC Public Information Office

Supreme Court junks petition to disclose Duterte health

May 08, 2020 - 3:02 PM

(UPDATED) The voting was 13-2, with Associate Justices Marvic Leonen and Benjamin Caguioa dissenting, sources said

EN BANC. The Supreme Court usually meets en banc Tuesdays of every week. File photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

ABS-CBN to Supreme Court: NTC shutdown violates press freedom

May 07, 2020 - 6:08 PM

'Strong public interest and equity demand that ABS-CBN be allowed to continue its operations,' ABS-CBN's lawyers tell the Supreme Court

CEASE AND DESIST. The National Telecommunications Commission(NTC) has issued a cease and desist order to the giant network ABS-CBN effective immediately. May 5, 2020. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

ABS-CBN runs to Supreme Court to stop NTC shutdown

May 07, 2020 - 4:16 PM

(UPDATED) The main petition wants to void the NTC shutdown order entirely

CEASE AND DESIST. The National Telecommunications Commission(NTC) has issued a cease and desist order to the giant network ABS-CBN effective immediately. May 5, 2020. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

In pandemic scramble, Duterte has one more job: Pick new SC justice

May 06, 2020 - 4:33 PM

In another historic adjustment, the Judicial and Bar Council will screen applicants through online interviews

EN BANC. The Justices of the Supreme Court in the session hall where oral arguments are held. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Justice Leonen: Laws ban poor man's gambling, but POGOs allowed?

May 02, 2020 - 3:27 PM

'We have to continue calling attention to these kinds of discrepancies,' Supreme Court Associate Justice Marvic Leonen

ONLINE GAMBLING. The Philippine government wants to better collect taxes from POGOs. Photo by Jeff Digma/Rappler

Supreme Court allows reduced bail for poor prisoners

Apr 30, 2020 - 4:30 PM

Chief Justice Diosdado Peralta signs and releases Administrative Circular No. 38 as one of the Supreme Court's responses to the coronavirus pandemic

JAILS. Officers from the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) conducts an awareness seminar regarding COVID-19 to detainees in Manila City Jail on March 12, 2020. Photo by Lisa Marie David/Rappler

Supreme Court lowered Bar passing grade for more techy lawyers in 'new normal'

Apr 29, 2020 - 7:49 PM

After the grade was lowered to 74, more than 300 made the cut

BAR EXAMS. Examinees with their relatives, schoolmates and friends gather at the Supreme Court on April 26, 2018, as it announces the results of the 2017 Bar Exams. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

2020 Bar exams postponed to 2021

Apr 29, 2020 - 3:32 PM

The 2020 Bar examinations will also be regionalized – they will be held in Manila and Cebu City

2020 BAR. Associate Justice Marvic Leonen is the Bar Chair for the 2020 Bar Examinations. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Supreme Court told: Non-release of vulnerable prisoners can cause riots

Apr 27, 2020 - 5:23 PM

'Death, violence and riots can also break out if the pandemic is left unchecked in prisons,' petitioners warn, even as the public health system is overwhelmed

PRISONS. In this photo taken on March 27, 2020, prison inmates lie to sleep at the crowded courtyard of the Quezon City jail in Manila. - UN rights chief Michelle Bachelet has urged countries to protect people held in overcrowded prisons and other enclosed facilities by releasing vulnerable detainees, saying COVID-19 "risks rampaging through such institutions". (Photo by Maria TAN / AFP)

New lawyers of coronavirus era: 2019 Bar results out online April 29

Apr 23, 2020 - 6:50 PM

The list will not be displayed at the Supreme Court premises. Bar takers should wait for the online release at home.

BAR 2019. Aspiring lawyers are greeted by supporters as they take the last day of the 2019 Bar Exams at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila on Sunday, November 24. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler