The Pasay City prosecutor's office has indicted Senator Antonio Trillanes IV for inciting to sedition, the second time the staunch administration critic was accused of the crime in court in a year.
In a Jan. 29 resolution seen Tuesday, Assistant City Prosecutor Reynaldo Ticyado said the evidence was "sufficient to establish the existence of probable cause" against the opposition senator.
The charge was filed before the Pasay City Metropolitan Trial Court on Jan. 30.
However, the prosecutor dismissed a complaint for proposal to commit coup d'etat against Trillanes for what he found was an insufficiency of the accusers' allegation.
The indictment stems from statements Trillanes made against President Rodrigo Duterte after the latter issued a proclamation revoking his amnesty in connection with his involvement in the 2003 Oakwood Mutiny and the 2007 Manila Penisula Siege.
Trillanes quickly criticized Duterte after the unprecedented amnesty nullification, which led to the Department of Justice pursuing old rebellion and coup d'etat cases against him. Saying he will "not escape," he called the president a "dictator."
"Hindi siya rumerespeto sa institusyon kaya ganito tayo. Kung 'yang mga ordinaryong tao pinapatay, 'yung mga kritiko niya ikukulong, so ganyan ang kalakaran sa Pilipinas ngayon," the prosecutor's resolution quoted him as saying.
He also supposedly said Duterte and Solicitor General Jose Calida would "make themselves look stupid" to "get rid" of him.
The complaint that Ticyado, the prosecutor, investigated was filed by Labor Undersecretary Jacinto Paras, Presidential Anti-Corruption Commissioner Manuelito Luna and lawyers Nasser Marohomsalic and Eligio Mallari.
In the recent resolution, Ticyado said Trillanes issued statements to the media "bearing words tending to instill a feeling of hatred and distrust towards the President of the Philippines and the Government that he represented" and which "disseminated to the general public thereby creating a danger of breach of peace and public order."
But in dismissing the complaint for proposal to commit coup d'etat, the prosecutor noted that Trillanes' assailed statement -- "Duterte will not be there for long, please do not do anything illegal or unconstitutional" -- was "obviously intended to remind the military and the police personnel concerned to act within the bounds of law and not to commit any act constituting the crime of coup d'etat..."
Trillanes already faces another case for inciting to sedition before a Pasay court over a privilege speech where he allegedly made a suggestion for the military to shoot Duterte. —NB, GMA News