Senate denies motion to cite House majority leader in contempt

March 20, 2012 2:02 am 

MANILA, March 19 – The Senate, sitting as impeachment court, denied on Monday the motion to cite House Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales II in contempt for allegedly threatening a congressman who had testified for the defense team in the impeachment trial of Chief Justice Renato Corona.

”In accordance with the caucus at noon today, the motion of the defense is denied. That’s the ruling of this court,” Senate President and Presiding Officer Juan Ponce Enrile announced before the Day 31 of the impeachment trial adjourned at 6:40 p.m.

Last March 15, the lawyers for the chief magistrate filed a motion asking the impeachment court to direct Gonzales to show cause why he should not be cited for contempt and thereafter, if the evidence warrants, to declare the House majority leader guilty of contempt of court.

The motion was in connection with the alleged threat of Gonzales to discipline Navotas City Rep. Tobias Tiangco and any congressman who would take the witness stand for Corona.

Tobias defied the House leadership and voluntarily testified that the architects of the impeachment complaint had coerced some congressmen in an effort to allegedly railroad the impeachment complaint against Corona in a caucus on December 12 last year.

Earlier, the impeachment court also ruled not to grant any motion to subpoena congressmen, particularly Reps. Hermilando Mandanas and Crispin Remulla. (PNA) scs/jfm

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