Water utility worker accused of rape now free

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Thursday, August 28, 2014


THE rape case filed against an employee of the Cagayan de Oro Water District (COWD), known for exposing alleged anomalies committed by officials of the said utility, was finally dismissed by the court.

After more than two months of detention in a jail in Cavite, the Dasmariñas trial court granted Emmanuel Mulawan Sr. his freedom after the complainant in a rape case that was filed against him failed to appear before the court during the arraignment hearing Wednesday.

“I knew it. I knew the complainant was fictitious. Even when I sent a subpoena to her address, it was only a return-to-sender. The court has even tried summoning her through a letter, return-to-sender din. I knew already that there was a great chance for us to win this case. And we just did,” Mulawan’s lawyer Earl Hans Santos told this paper by phone Wednesday.

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[READ: Arrested COWD employee writes family his ordeal]

The COWD senior draftsman was arrested in his office for rape case last June 11, 2014 and abruptly brought to Imus, Cavite, where the warrant was issued the following day.

The way with how Mulawan was transferred from Cagayan de Oro to Cavite in a matter of hours baffled his family and co-employees.

Questionable

In a previous interview, Santos said Mulawan was only framed up by “someone he personally [did] not know” and that charges were only trumped up.

The dismissal of his case proved the charges were fictitious because of the complainant’s non-appearance during the arraignment.

“Even the prosecutors themselves knew by heart, I think, that Mulawan is not a rapist and charges against him were all wrong. For one, the complainant did not swear in front of them. Therefore, the warrant [should not have been] issued,” he said.

He added that if Mulawan will pursue filing charges against the prosecutors who allowed and issued the warrant, he will definitely make a move on it.

“Personally, I think these prosecutors should be sued. The hassle they gave to Mulawan because of a very ‘foul’ warrant is incomparable. If my client will permit me to do so, I will file illegal [action against] them,” he said.

A new life

Santos is worried that Mulawan’s life may be in danger since his client just won the case and “has triumphed over the frame-up.”

He suggested that Mulawan can apply under the Witness Protection Program of the Department of Justice, but his life may not remain the same.

“What he does, what he loves to do, his job at COWD, his advocacy, may all not go back to normal because of it. But it can be worth it if he really feels threatened,” he said.

Mulawan’s co-worker, Antonio Young, was present during the hearing. Lawyer Ronald Carinal handled Mulawan’s case during the hearing as an associate of Santos.

Mulawan is expected to arrive in Cagayan de Oro today.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on August 28, 2014.

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