Court issues Lim Jr. hold order

AFTER he returned to the Philippines following his family’s long-week cruise tour last month, road rage suspect David Lim Jr. is no longer allowed to leave the country.

Regional Trial Court Judge Alexander Acosta had issued a hold departure order (HDO).

Acosta, of the RTC Branch 9, granted the prosecution’s motion for issuance of an HDO after he found the pleading to be “impressed with merit.”

Lim reported to Acosta on June 2 after his return from their cruise tour along with his family members from May 26 to 31.

Lim and his family booked a cruise to Alaska, the United States, and Vancouver, Canada, with the Royal Caribbean Cruise.

Lim wanted to “travel and spend time with his family in these difficult times when he is facing unwarranted accusations, denunciations and even bullying.”

The Office of the Cebu City Prosecutor will conduct anew a preliminary investigation into the frustrated homicide and possession of illegal ammunition charges against Lim Jr.

This came after Judges Acosta and Ricky Jones Macabaya granted Lim’s omnibus motion to refer the case for preliminary investigation and suspend proceedings.

Lim’s scheduled arraignment of his frustrated murder case before Macabaya’s sala was postponed last June 20 and reset it on Aug. 15.

Judge Macabaya is trying Lim’s frustrated homicide case, while Judge Acosta is handling the possession of illegal ammunition case.

Mundlyn Martin, counsel for complainant Ephraim Nuñal, said that they would comment on Macabaya’s order directing them to comment the motion to withdraw the pleading the case for preliminary investigation and suspend proceedings.

Lim’s lawyers said that Lim is entitled to a preliminary investigation as part of his statutory right to due process.

The defense said the trial courts ought to refer the case to the City Prosecutor’s Office and suspend all the proceedings.

Lim, 28, shot Nuñal around 3 a.m. last March 19. The incident was caught on a car’s dashboard camera and went viral.

The bail amounted to P24,000 for the frustrated homicide case and P120,000 for the illegal possession of ammunition case.

Tamae Bacu Takahashi, Lim’s girlfriend, is also facing charges for violating Article 275 of the Revised Penal Code, or the abandonment of a person in danger.

Prosecutor Liceria Lofranco-Rabillas ruled there was no “qualifying circumstance” for the case to be a frustrated murder, like treachery.

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