THE four daughters of slain publicist Salvador “Bubby” Dacer on Wednesday asked a Manila court to order the cancellation of the passport of fugitive Senator Panfilo Lacson in the hope of extraditing him to face his murder charges.
In a motion filed by lawyer Demetrio Custodio Jr., the Dacer children sought an Order from the Manila Regional Trial Court seeking to compel the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to revoke Lacson’s Philippine passport, which allegedly enabled him to hop from one country to another.
“Based on the foregoing, it is prayed that the Honorable Court direct the DFA to cancel the passport of the accused and to take such available and appropriate steps within the legal authority in order that accused may be brought back to the Philippines so that he may be dealt with in accordance of the law,” the Dacer family said in their three-page motion.
The Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 18, through then Judge, now Court of Appeals Associate Justice Myra Garcia-Fernandez, issued a warrant of arrest against the senator in connection with the two counts of murder charges filed by the Department of Justice relating to the killings of Dacer and his driver Emmanuel Corbito in November 2000.
Prior to the filing of the Information before the Court, Lacson flew to Hong Kong on January 5. Since then he has never been seen or heard, prompting the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to place him in the Interpol’s “Red Notice” list.
Recent sightings of the senator showed that he had been in Europe, particularly in Rome, Italy.
According to the Dacer children, Lacson’s passports must be revoked since he is now considered a fugitive from justice.
Custodio said the DFA could only cancel the passport of a person upon lawful order of the court to hold the departure of an applicant because of the pending criminal case.
Citing Section 8 (b)(1) of Republic Act No. 8239, the cancellation of a passport is allowed when its holder is a fugitive from justice.
Lacson, a critic of the Arroyo administration, has denied the allegations and accused the Arroyo government of persecuting him.
The Dacer family however may have to wait for quite awhile before the Manila court decides on their motion and other pending motions as they there is no replacement yet of Fernandez after she was promoted to the CA. (JCV/Sunnex)