Cedric Lee surrenders

Cedric Lee
Cedric Lee(File Photo)

BUSINESSMAN Cedric Lee surrendered to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Thursday evening, May 2, 2024, hours following his conviction over the serious illegal detention case filed against him and three others by actor-host Vhong Navarro.

NBI director Attorney Medardo Dilemos said NBI agents fetched Lee around 7:30 p.m. after he expressed willingness to turn himself in.

He was brought to the NBI headquarters in Quezon City where his mugshot and fingerprints were taken.

The camp of Lee said they are preparing to challenge the court’s decision before the Court of Appeals.

On May 2, Lee, together with model Deniece Cornejo, Ferdinand Guerrero, and Simeon Raz were found guilty beyond reasonable doubt by the Taguig Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 153 for serious illegal detention for ransom.

They were sentenced to life imprisonment and were also ordered to pay Navarro P100,000 in civil indemnity, P100,000 as moral damages, and P100,000 as exemplary damages.

Cornejo and Raz have already been committed immediately after the decision was handed down during the promulgation.

Navarro claimed that he was mauled and threatened by Lee, Guerrero, and Raz on January 22, 2014 in Taguig City after accusing him of raping Cornejo.

He said the accused demanded P2 million in exchange for his release.

In February 2023, the Supreme Court has dismissed the rape and acts of lasciviousness charges filed by Cornejo against Navarro noting the inconsistent statements of the complainant.

Navarro in a statement made during the May 2 episode of noontime show “It’s Showtime” thanked those who supported him in his decade-long legal battle.

“Salamat Lord dahil lagi kang nakagabay sa akin. Sa rami kong pinagdaanan sa buhay, ikaw ang naging sentro ko at napakatotoo mo. Kaya maraming-maraming salamat,” he said.

“Roller coaster ang pinagdaanan ko. Ang hirap i-explain. Minsan sabaw ako, pero andyan kayo to support me dahil alam kong mahal na mahal niyo ako,” he added.

The host vowed to make it all up to his children and especially his wife who never left his side despite what happened.

“Marami akong pagkukulang sayo pero di mo ako iniwan. Marami akong kasalanan pero andiyan ka pa rin. Hayaan mo akong bumawi sayo sa abot ng aking makakaya hanggang sa huling sandali ng buhay ko. Mahal na mahal kita,” he said. (TPM/SunStar Philippines)

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