Iloilo judge issues gag order vs MORE Power, PECO

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THE JUDGE now handling the expropriation case filed by MORE Electric and Power Corp. (MORE Power) against Panay Electric Co., Inc. (PECO) has issued a gag order against both companies to stop their representatives from publicly commenting on the case. Iloilo City Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 35 Judge Daniel Antonio Gerardo S. Amular, in an order dated Aug. 20, said: “The Court needs time to go over the voluminous records of the case. Clearly, the comments and disclosures over the airwaves pertaining to the judicial proceedings by counsels of both parties may subject this Court into disrepute or disrespect.” Mr. Amular said he has been hearing the pronouncements of the counsels of both companies over the radio. “This court invoking the sub judice rule, hereby issues a Gag Order, immediately directing and ordering the parties, their counsels, and persons acting on their behalf to avoid any improper conduct tending directly or indirectly to impede, obstruct, or degrade, the administration of justice, thereby insulating the Court from extraneous influence,” Mr. Amular said. The case was re-raffled to Mr. Amular after RTC Branch 37 Judge Marie Yvette D. Go inhibited herself from further hearing the expropriation proceedings. — Emme Rose S. Santiagudo

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