Court orders release of woman in drug rap-A A +A
Thursday, September 13, 2012
THE Regional Trial Court (RTC) 16 directed the chief of San Pedro police to release a woman jailed for illegal drugs case.
In a hearing for habeas corpus Thursday, RTC Branch 16 judge Emmanuel Carpio ordered the release of Sharon Serafica Suetake, 34, of Trading Boulevard in Davao City, citing the drug case filed against the latter was already dismissed by the City Prosecution Office (CPO).
Carpio called the attention of Chief Inspector Eliseo Malana Jr., chief of San Pedro police, after Prime Atillo, aunt of Suetake, filed a habeas corpus before the court asking for the release of her niece.
In her petition, Atillo said Malana unlawfully detained Suetake.
She said Suetake was illegally arrested in a buy-bust operation on August 13 when she was found lying on the bed inside the residence of Armando Mangliit, the subject of the buy-bust operation.
Mangliit and Suetake were brought for an inquest proceeding before the CPO for violation of Republic Act 9165, otherwise known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
The CPO found probable cause to charge Mangliit for violating section 5, while the complaint against Suetake was dismissed.
During the hearing of the petition Thursday morning, Senior Police Officer 2 Ritchie Lozano, of San Pedro police, appeared to represent their office but the court directed the latter that Malana, who stands as the respondent of the petition, should be present and not him.
Thus, the hearing was moved in the afternoon, with a warning that the court would issue an arrest warrant if Malana failed to appear.
Upon the order of the court, Malana appeared at the hearing and answered the petition at around 1:30 p.m.
In an interview, Malana said they continued to detain Suetake since there was no resolution furnished before them ordering for the release of the latter.
He said the CPO might have submitted the case before the Department of Justice (DOJ) for automatic review on heinous crime cases.
He added that he was not informed that the court ordered him to appear for the hearing of the case.
"Usually basta naay cases nga ingon ani, ang apprehending officer ang musabay (In cases like this, the apprehending officer is tasked to accompany the accused)," he told Sun.Star Davao.
Suetake was immediately released from the custody of San Pedro police upon the order of the court.
Carpio, in his order, cited that Suetake should be released considering that she was only inside the house of the suspect and it was only Mangliit who was charged by the CPO.
Suetake welcomed her release after being jailed for almost a month.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on September 14, 2012.