THE Department of Justice (DOJ) dismissed the carnapping and two other charges against the four siblings of the Yanson family that owns the Vallacar Transit Inc.
The DOJ, in its decision on July 3, dismissed the carnapping case for 55 buses, possession of explosives and robbery against Roy, Emily, Ricardo Yanson Jr., and Ma. Lourdes Celina Lopez, also known as the Yanson 4.
The DOJ cited the lack of unlawful taking as the buses were voluntarily parked by their drivers in the premises of Dynamic Builders, owned by one of the Yanson 4.
The DOJ said the "drivers simply parked their bus units inside the premises of Dynamic Builders on the premise that it would be safe in the said place" following the chaotic takeover by the other faction of VTI premises without any court order.
The incident happened at the height of the siege in August 2019 by the other Yanson siblings and the police in the Mansilingan head office of the bus company which was done without any court order, and despite the pendency of Leo Rey's suit questioning his ouster as VTI's former president, said lawyer Carlo Joaquin Narvasa, one of the lawyers of the Yanson 4.
The dismissed charges included those filed against the spouse and children of the Y4: Margarethe Rose, Riana Micole, and Christopher Olric Yanson, who were directors of Dynamic Builders.
The charges of grave coercion against Roy, Emily Yanson, Ma. Lourdes Celina Lopez, Rose, Riana Micole, and Christopher Yanson were also dismissed as "no sufficient evidence was established by complainant" against them.
Ricardo Yanson Jr. was however indicted for grave coercion and violation of the Public Service Act, and Emily Yanson was also indicted for Falsification and Perjury, both of which their lawyers will continue to question before the Secretary of Justice and exhaust all available legal remedies.
Meanwhile, the charge of possession of explosives under Republic Act 9516 was also dismissed in its entirety by the DOJ as the Yanson 4 "were neither in physical nor constructive possession of the items recovered."
Further, the DOJ noted that "the recovery of the items creates a serious question of credibility as to their source of origin." And that the "complaint is anchored generally in conjectures, suspicions, and speculations and therefore have no probative value and cannot stand in the realm of evidence."
Concurrently, the charges against the Yanson 4 for robbery by the use of force upon things, possession of picklock or similar tools were likewise dismissed by the DOJ.
While, inexplicably, Jerica Leanne Ramos and Jerina Louise Ramos, daughters of Emily Yanson, were included in the complaint against the Yanson 4, all charges against them were dismissed by the investigating state prosecutor.
Lawyers of the Yanson 4 then ask how the Yanson 4 were indicted for Qualified Theft of property owned by VTI when they were incumbent operating officers and comprise its Board of Directors. The validity of this finding will also be questioned before the courts and the DOJ.
The dismissal of these criminal complaints against the Yanson 4 came at the heels of an earlier dismissal of another set of criminal cases against them for arbitrary detention, grave threats, grave coercion, among others, also by the DOJ.
The intra-corporate actions and counter-suit filed by the siblings against each other are still pending before the Bacolod RTC and Court of Appeals in Cebu.