Ombudsman won’t appeal acquittals, case dismissals anymore—Martires

In yet another move favoring public officials accused of corruption, Ombudsman Samuel Martires has ordered prosecutors not to pursue appeals anymore on the dismissal of criminal cases or the acquittal of the accused.

Office Circular No. 18, which took effect immediately, covers criminal cases in the Regional Trial Court (RTC) or the Sandiganbayan, as well as administrative cases brought to the Court of Appeals (CA).

The circular cited the “constitutional provision on double jeopardy,” which had barred the courts from taking a second look at the evidence.

Prosecutors usually file appeal on the grounds of grave abuse of discretion, but Martires found that the Ombudsman actually had “zero” success in cases that it brought to the Supreme Court (SC).

“Bakit namin ipagpapatuloy itong isang bagay na hindi naman kami nananalo? Bakit namin pasasakitin ulo namin sa isang bagay na di naman dapat sumakit ulo namin, di namin dapat pilitin ang isang mali,” Martires told reporters.

“Sinabi na nga ng husgado, pinawalang sala ung tao, bakit namin ipipilit na may kasalanan ung taong iyan? Ano bang interes namin sa mga taong ito? Para ipangalandakan sa inyo na kami ang anghel at ang mga akusadong ito ang demonyo?” he added.

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