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SC denies Celdran appeal

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CULTURAL ACTIVIST Carlos Celdran’s motion for reconsideration on his case for “offending religious freedom” has been denied by the Supreme Court. His jail sentence has been upheld to a minimum of three months and a maximum of one year and one month. Mr. Celdran was charged by the Metropolitan Trial Court of Manila for “the offense of Offending the Religious Feelings defined and penalized under Article 133 of the RPC.” Article 133 of the Revised Penal Code reads: “The penalty of arresto mayor in its maximum period to prision correccional in its minimum period shall be imposed upon anyone who, in a place devoted to religious worship or during the celebration of any religious ceremony shall perform acts notoriously offensive to the feelings of the faithful.” In 2010, Mr. Celdran interrupted a religious service in Intramuros and shouted that the church should not be involved in politics. Mr. Celdran was dressed as national hero Jose Rizal and holding a sign on which was written the word “Damaso”, referring to the villainous friar in Rizal’s novel Noli Me Tangere. — Gillian M. Cortez





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