THE court wants the owner of Jerome’s Pawnshop & General Merchandise and the Cebu City Government to submit position papers within five days to discuss whether a temporary restraining order (TRO) and a writ of preliminary injunction should be issued.
The development came after the owner of Jerome’s Pawnshop filed a petition for injunction with prayer for the issuance of a TRO or writ of preliminary injunction before the court to stop Mayor Tomas Osmeña and the Prevention Restoration Order Beautification and Enhancement (Probe) from closing his branches.
During the hearing on Friday, March 15, Regional Trial Court Branch 17 Judge Anacleto Debalucos asked the two parties to submit judicial affidavits of their witnesses and all evidences to prove their claims on the pending petition.
City lawyer Carlo Gimena said they will file their position paper next week.
Jerome’s Pawnshop’s branches in Pasil, Basak San Nicolas, Labangon, Calamba, Sanciangko, Junquera, Lahug and Talamban were padlocked by the City through Probe last March 8 for allegedly violating Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Circular 938, which prohibits the operation of more than 10 branches under a single proprietorship.
Under the Pawnshop Regulation Act, pawnshop owners are required to register with the BSP before they can start operating.
Jerome’s Pawnshop was investigated by the City Attorney’s Office after the BSP referred to the Office of the Mayor a complaint filed against the pawnshop’s branch on Sanciangko St. for accepting a stolen item and refusing to release it to the owner without payment for the pawned item.
The pawnshop paid business taxes, but it has no permanent mayor’s business permit, which can only be granted if it fulfilled one requirement of the City Treasurer’s Office—a BSP clearance.