By Mortz C. Ortigoza
MANGALDAN - The mayor of this town lauded the police here in clamping to jail the village chairman and his No. 1 councilwoman after they both violated the 60 days preventive suspension she meted to them last month.
Parayno said their detention hailed from the decision of the members of the Sangguniang Bayan (SB) (town council) to suspend their administrative hearing on the illegal exaction case versus Quinto and Morillo. The respondents' lawyer Joseph Emmanuel Cera ordered them last December 3 to take their post at the barangay hall even without finishing the 60 days preventive suspension meted by the mayor.
|CRYING BUT DEFIANT: Kgd. Melinda Morillo|
The preventive suspension was implemented last October 16 and would end on December 15.
"The mayor's preventive suspension is provided in Section 63 of the Local Government Code while the penalty's power of the town council to suspend them up to six months is different," a legal source at the office of the mayor here said.
In response to Cera, Parayno said that it was unfortunate that the duo were ill-advised and took upon themselves to assume their post without appropriate legal basis.
"As public officers, like you were once, we are expected to act in accordance with the law and be guided as always with what the law so provides. It is not for your clients to presume what is not provided under the resolution. The preventive suspension still stands unless declared otherwise by proper authorities," she stressed.
In the suspension of the hearing last November 24, the SB approved that the case against the respondents be tried by the court.
One of the excerpts of the Council's resolution says that it is for the court to decide after someone files a case there to dismiss the duo from public office.
The SB can only penalized them up to six months in case it continues its hearing and found the duo guilty.
Quinto and Morillo have been ordered inside their cells by Superintendent Candelario around 8 P.M of December 3 after they were forcefully arrested inside the barangay hall around 11 A.M in the same day when they unilaterally assumed their post.
Both were crying as they were interviewed by the T.V and print media.
"Pag labas namin dito bukas, asume uli kami uli doon sa puesto namin kahit hulihin pa nila kami uli," a defiant but crying Morillo told media men.
The police sued them last December 4 at the prosecutor's office in Dagupan City.with Usurpation of Authority or Official Functions, Assault against Persons in Authority, and Resistance and Disobedience to a Person in Authority when they assumed the post of barangay chairman and council member.
Quinto told reporters that they would file counter charges against the chief of police here for arbitrary detention and coercion.
No. 2 Kagawad Naomi Fabia has been serving the post of Quinto the day he was dealt by the preventive suspension by the mayor last month.
During the stand off at the police precinct with the police, Cera was expecting that around 11 P.M of December 3 the 12 hours prescriptive period of the detention of Quinto and Morillo expire as they were not formally charge within that period at the prosecutor's office.
But Candelario was adamant not to release them as the police planned to file a case against them on the following day.
"There is no Fiscal that would entertain our case against them. It's a legal impossibility," a lawyer of Parayno told Candelario on the insistence of the duo to release them.
The lawyer told Candelario that if the respondents want to have their temporary liberty they have to apply for a bail bond at the court. However, the bail bond application did not push through because Assistant Prosecutor Myla S. Malicdem of the provincial prosecutor's office in Dagupan City dismissed in December 4 the cases of the police for lack of probable cause.
BELOW ARE THE DOCUMENTS ON THE CASE OF QUINTO AND MORILLO: