Celebrated Court Decisions on Crimes against Women

Posted: December 14, 2010 in Analysis, politics
Tags: , , , , ,

December 14, 2010. This day will have to be earmarked in the Philippine legal history. At the lower court, an RTC judge acquitted Hayden Kho from the  two charges filed by Katrina Halili related to the violation of RA 9262 or the Anti-Violence against Women and their Children Act. The second is the reversal of the Philippine Supreme Court on the lower courts’ decision to keep Hubert Webb and others in prison for the rape and death of Carmela Visconde.

Justice was afforded. These two publicised stories for claims over justice were followed through time. They occured in different in times and places, but are of the same context — violence against women. The complainants and the accused have metted justice in different time span. One took a couple of years, the other took decades to have finality.

Katrina cried for justice when her sex-video appeared online and transmitted from one mobile phone to another. The case she filed were judged to be insufficient in evidence to prove the accused, Kho, guilty beyond reasonable doubt. This is the same reason of those justices in the Supreme Court who acquitted Webb and his company not guilty of raping and murdering Carmela.

 The courts decision were based on the judicial proceedings. The verdicts depend on how the legal counselors of the complainant can prove that the accused are guilty “beyond reasonable doubt”. Halili’s case does not have finality yet. It can still be appealed. While, for the Visconde all means have been done. The higher court, with finality, gave the verdict that the accused who served in prison for 15 years are not guilty.

The point of  the higher court’s reversal of the previous decisions, teaches us several things assuming that the Supreme Court is infallable. First, the lower courts are not capable to decide with finality. Second, the higher court and lower court’s decision are not concordant. Third, there’s justice in the Philippines as to whatever that means, because final decisions are made after hearing.

However, beyond the decisions made, there is still a lingering crisis that our society has to deal with. That is the problem of violence against women. The courts’ decisions on those cases demonstrates the jurisprudence in the justice system. They are not proof that the right of women for protection, safety, security and dignity are upheld in the society. Daily, there are reports of violence against women and their children. The courts merely decided that those who are accused are not guilty, then the culprits are out there on the loose.

  1. Bea says:

    I believe that Hubert was innocent. But Hayden Kho is not. I still want to make him sabunot. Kapal talaga.

  2. Bea says:

    Sending you an email of an essay I wrote about Law and Literature (which I wrote for CL310). Since you’re already deconstructing here, the essay might be helpful.

  3. rod rivera says:

    browsed on it bea, so there is a love affair with the law and literature, the same as with philosophy and literature. I was reading Hegel at lunch break this afternoon, talking about philosphy, literature and law. The law is a manifestation of man’s thoughts and will. He he, man’s thought is free, like how the literature is free, so philosophy and law must promote that ethical freedom.

    Kaya even those who commit crime against women are free.

  4. loricapuno says:

    Many filipinos (of all genders) want to claim that they are open-minded, that men & women are equals, but in reality, there are many more filipino men who treat women as inferior to them — as well as countless filipino women who position themselves as such. i witnessed this when i paid a visit to a doj office: there was a lady lawyer and a male lawyer-in-training. Who did more of the talking? It was the lawyer in training. Who allowed this to be so? The lawyer. In that same room, there was this defendant, male, who was looking at the female lawyer arrogantly… Interestingly, the case was a plea for financial support, which the errant husband was not giving, a form of domestic violence.

    It is said that justice is blind in order for it to be fair. But must it be blind to the fact that right there under its nose, there was a new injustice being committed?

  5. rod rivera says:

    What keeps the vicious cycle of violence, injustice, discrimination and abuse? Our awareness of these must heighten to a moral and social consciousness to vindicate equality and justice. Its my personal assumption that our social acts are a shared responsibility, we act what we think. Then ours is the liability to our thoughts and actions.

    How I wish that there is switch in our head to turn on that moral and social consciousness as often as we can that we may become more mindful of our behavior. So then, we can appreciate others as our kapwa – an equal in every sort.

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