Warrant issued for Australian man in row with Paolo

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Wednesday, January 15, 2014


THE warrant of arrest against the Australian national who tried to run over Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte and his police escort was released to the authorities in Manila, a source from the Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 16 said.

The source, who refused to have his identity disclosed, said the arrest warrant against Michael Hatcher, a 73-year-old Australia national, was released to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) in Manila after the last known address of Hatcher was in Makati City.

"Nung nag-file ang legal counsel ni Hatcher na si Leonard Cagatin ng motion to withdraw as counsel, nag-send siya ng copy sa address ni Hatcher sa Manila. So presumably andoon pa siya, (When the legal counsel of Hatcher, Leonard Cagatin, filed a motion to withdraw as counsel, he sent a copy to Hatcher's address in Manila. So he is presumably still there)," the source said.

The arrest warrant came after RTC Branch 16 Judge Emmanuel Carpio ordered Hatcher's arrest after the latter failed to attend a pre-trial scheduled on November 27 last year. His P225,000 bail bond was also forfeited.

The complainants' legal counsel Alexis Lumbatan, in a previous interview, said that their case with Hatcher is irreconcilable and that they are exhausting all possibilities to have the respondent imprisoned.

Duterte earlier expressed that he is forgiving Hatcher yet the latter demanded a public apology and a compensation for moral damages worth P10 million.

The case stemmed from a traffic altercation between Hatcher and Duterte. Duterte reportedly got out of his car and tried to talk to Hatcher but the respondent sped off and came close to running over the vice mayor and his police escort Police Officer 3 Roey Ociones.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on January 15, 2014.

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