Arrest warrant vs Delfin Lee valid — SC

MANILA, March 12 (PNA) — The Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday declared as “valid” the arrest warrant issued by the San Fernando City, Pampanga Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 42 against Globe Asiatique president Delfin Lee in connection with the P6.6-billion syndicated estafa case filed against him.

In a press conference, SC Public Information Office (PIO) Chief and Spokesman Atty. Theodore O. Te said the SC through a temporary restraining order (TRO) nullified the quashing by the Court of Appeals (CA) of the warrant of arrest against Lee for the syndicated estafa case.

“The TRO is effective immediately and continuing until further orders from the Court,” Te said.

The TRO is directed against the implementation of the CA Nov. 7, 2013 decision in CA-G.R. SP No. 127553 entitled “Delfin S. Lee, petitioner, versus Ma. Amifaith S. Fider-Reyes, in her capacity as Presiding Judge of RTC, Branch 42, San Fernando, Pampanga, People of the Philippines and Home Development Mutual Fund (HDMF), respondents”.

The said CA ruling annulled and set aside the orders dated May 22, 2012 and Aug. 22, 2012 issued by Judge Reyes in Criminal Case No. 18480.

The CA ruling also quashed, recalled and lifted the warrant of arrest that the said judge issued against petitioner Lee.

The TRO was issued by the SC Third Division chaired by Associate Justice Presbitero J. Velasco, Jr. following the petition filed by the Department of Justice (DOJ).

The petition stemmed when the CA ordered in Nov. 7, 2013 the quashing of the warrant of arrest issued by the San Fernando City, Pampanga RTC, which was also made as the basis for the “delisting” of the name of Lee from the list of wanted persons with warrants of arrest of the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG).

The SC Second Division earlier issued a TRO against the conduct of investigation by the DOJ in the second, third and fourth complaint of estafa filed against Lee. (PNA)