SC reiterates: IBP has no jurisdiction over lawyers performing gov’t duties

The Supreme Court (SC) has reiterated that the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) has no disciplinary jurisdiction over government lawyers charged with administrative offenses involving their official duties.

In a recent 2-page notice of resolution, the SC 2nd Division dismissed the gross ignorance complaint filed by lawyer Bernardo Luceres against Prosecutor Ma. Concepcion Trinidad-Abaya for lack of jurisdiction.

“For such acts, government lawyers fall under the disciplinary authority of either their superior or the Ombudsman,” read the notice signed by Division Clerk of Court Maria Lourdes Perfecto.

“An anomalous situation will arise if the IBP asserts jurisdiction and decides against a government lawyer, while the disciplinary authority finds in favor of the government lawyer,” it pointed out.

Luceres in his complaint questioned Trinidad-Abaya’s dismissal of a criminal complaint not detailed in the SC resolution.

The lawyer argued that had the prosecutor known of the Rules on Electronic Evidence, “she would not have dismissed the case.”

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