Why Cedric Lee, Deniece Cornejo face non-bailable raps

Posted at 01/29/14 1:07 AM

MANILA -- Businessman Cedric Lee, model Deniece Cornejo, and their companions who allegedly attacked and held actor Vhong Navarro against his will are facing a non-bailable criminal charge, a lawyer said Tuesday.

Lawyer Danny Concepcion, In his DZMM show "Usapang de Campanilla," said serious illegal detention is a non-bailable offense.

"Kapag ang isang tao ay ibinilanggo, ipiniit, ikinulong, o iginapos, illegal detention iyun," he said.

The case becomes more serious depending on how long a person has been illegally detained.

He also explained the other charges that Lee, Cornejo, and their companions face such as serious physical injuries, grave threat, coercion, illegal arrest, and blackmail.

The penalty for serious physical injuries, just like serious illegal detention, will depend on the amount of time a person spends recovering from the injury.

"Kapag mas tumatagal ang pagrecover, nagiging mas serious ito. Pagtagal ng paggaling ng injury, mas bumibigat ang parusa," Concepcion said.

Grave threats involve threatening the life of a person and his or her family, while coercion involves forcing a person to do something he or she is not willing to do.

Concepcion also explained illegal arrest, which is different from illegal detention in a sense that a person was arrested and brought to a police station.

He said blackmail can fall under the category of grave threat or extortion.

Concepcion also said it might be difficult for suspects to defend themselves if they face multiple charges. However, he believes that Lee and Cornejo will file counter-charges.

Concepcion explained the complexity of the police blotter filed against Navarro. He said that a person under citizen's arrest should be put under custodial investigation. The arrested should also be informed of his rights, especially if there was no lawyer present.

"Kung hindi siya under custodial investigation, puwedeng gamitin yung mga sinabi niya against him. Kung under custodial investigation naman, at admission ang katumbas ng pinirmahang blotter, hindi admissible sa korte yun."

In the case of Navarro, if he insists that the arrest was illegal, and that he was only forced to sign the police blotter, he can use it in his defense.

"Kapag napatunayan ang sinasabi niya, maaring mawalan ng saysay ang pinirmahan niya."