Press Release
June 5, 2020

Dispatch from Crame No. 816:
Sen. Leila M. de Lima's statement on SolGen Calida's Flaunting of his Legal Victories during a recent House Hearing, re: ABS-CBN

SOLGEN Calida thinks he is a crusader, a knight in shining armor, when he professes to be fighting for a just cause in jailing me, ousting former Chief Justice Sereno, and shutting down ABS-CBN. He is proud of this record and his shameless prostitution of the law and rape of justice in accordance with Duterte's wishes.

As Duterte's legal hoodlum, Calida flaunts his medals as if they were war wounds. But Calida is not in a real war, much less a fair fight. He only wins because the justice system is rigged in his favor. This is where his talent shines. Rather than a lawyer, Calida is nothing more than a glorified underworld fixer.

What Calida managed to pull off in my case, Sereno's ouster, and ABS-CBN's shut down is the very antithesis of the rule of law and justice. His sycophantic disposition towards his vindictive principal lends him to do legal acrobatics and twisted distortions of time-honored principles of law that wreak havoc on our justice system. He has managed to destroy our legal institutions not only by corrupting their very core, but also by rendering them accomplice to the degradation of their very own institutional integrity.

In years to come, Calida's so-called "legal victories" will be discussed in law schools not as sterling examples of how justice was done in the time of Duterte, but of how the law was used to rape and mutilate it. The dissenting opinions to every Supreme Court decision he corrupted out of Padre Faura are there for the law students to see and read. They will probe into the real record of what happened in those cases, of how every known legal principle was bastardized into unrecognizable ghoulish versions of what they once stood for.

This is what will happen because no self-respecting teacher of the law will ever consider the past four years of legal abomination by Calida and this administration as a golden age of rediscovery in legal scholarship. Quite the opposite, they will interpret Calida's stint at the OSG as the era not even of legal sophistry, but of plain and simple semantical acrobatics, with his twisting, tumbling, and somersaulting agility in the circus that became of the justice system under Duterte.

(Access the handwritten version of Dispatch from Crame No. 816, here:


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