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SC rules TRO vs. WLO on Arroyo couple stays

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Voting 9-4, the Supreme Court (SC) en banc (full court) ruled on Tuesday that its temporary restraining order (TRO) on the watch list order (WLO) issued by the Department of Justice (DOJ) against former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and former First Gentleman Atty. Jose Miguel “Mike” Arroyo "stays in full force and in effect."

The TRO was issued by the SC en banc on November 15, 2011, restraining the DOJ from implementing its WLO against the Arroyo couple, thereby allowing the former president to travel abroad to seek medical treatment for her bone disease.

In a press conference, SC Spokesman and Court Administrator Atty. Jose Midas Marquez said that even if the legal counsel of the Arroyo couple, Atty. Ferdinand Topacio, has not fully complied with some of the TRO requirements, the TRO stays as a “temporary remedy” in the case.

Marquez said that the SC en banc had earlier deliberated on the issue whether or not the TRO is suspended pending compliance with its conditions.

He also noted that the Court had previously voted 7-6, ruling that the TRO “stays in full force and effect” pending compliance of the conditions.

The three conditions of the TRO are: a P2-million cash bond, the appointment of a legal counsel of the respondents while they are abroad, and for the Arroyo couple to personally report or inform the Philippine embassy or consulate about their presence in a particular country.

By Perfecto T. Raymundo Jr.-PNA




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