(Eagle News) — The Supreme Court has asked the Cabanatuan judge who subpoenaed the Baguio enforcers who took his license plates and gave him a ticket over what they said was illegal parking to comment on the incident.
According to SC spokesperson Brian Keith Hosaka, Municipal Court Judge Nelson V. Lago of Branch III was asked to comment by Court Administrator Midas Marquez through Deputy Court Administrator for Luzon Raul Villanueva.
“The Office of the Court Administrator cannot make any conclusions as of yet,” Hosaka added.
In an Oct. 28 subpoena, Lago asked a member of Baguio City’s public order and safety division, and the traffic enforcement chief assigned to the Baguio City Public Market to appear before his sala on Nov. 29 and explain why they should not be cited in indirect contempt for their actions.
The enforcers had supposedly given Lago a ticket and confiscated his license plates after he allegedly parked his vehicle near a jeepney terminal.
According to an Inquirer news report, Lago’s subpoena said settling the fine and recovering his license plates “evidently caused delay in the scheduled hearings” and “the administration of justice.”
“Due process is a basic right and enshrined and protected in our Constitution and it applies even in the cases of confiscations of license plates,” the report quoted the subpoena as saying.
But in a radio interview, Baguio Mayor Benjamin Magalong defended the enforcers, saying they were only doing their jobs.
He said Lago had violated a local ordinance when he parked his vehicle near the jeepney terminal in the first place.
“Puwede naman po silang mag-file ng kaso at i-question ang ating ordinansa. Bakit naman gagamitin mo iyong position para lang mag-exert ng influence e alam mo namang mali kayo?” Magalong said.
“Iyong mga may awtoridad dapat magpakumbaba sila at sumunod na lang po sa ating batas,” Magalong added. With a report from Moira Encina