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SC junks petitions vs Anakbayan

The Supreme Court (SC) on Friday junked the petition for habeas corpus and Writ of Amparo filed against progressive group Anakbayan in connection with the alleged disappearance of 18-year-old Alicia Jasper Lucena.

Chief Justice Diosdado M. Peralta, in a decision he penned in G.R. No. 252120 promulgated on 15 September 2020, ruled that the plea of Alicia’s parents, Francis and Relissa Lucena, for the issuance of a writ of amparo is not proper and that the prayer for the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus lacks merit.

The court also said that since the petitioner’s daughter has already attained the age of majority which is 18 years old, she, in the eyes of the State, has earned the right to make independent choices with respect to the places where she wants to stay, as well as to the persons whose company she wants to keep.

Further, the remedy of amparo, in its present formulation, is confined merely to instances of extralegal killings or enforced disappearances and to associated threats.

The SC decided that Alicia’s case does not qualify either as an actual or threatened enforced disappearance or extralegal killing.

It also said that Alicia is not missing and her whereabouts determinable as she is staying with Anakbayan and its officers.

This, therefore, does not merit the granting of a writ of habeas corpus as this is a remedy applicable only to cases of illegal confinement or detention where a person is deprived of his or her liberty, or where the rightful custody of any person is withheld from the person entitled thereto.

Alicia, the Court noted, did not appear to have been deprived of her liberty nor were her parents been excluded from their rightful custody over her person.

“The petitioners, the Court said, failed to make a case that AJ is being detained or is being kept by the Anakbayan against her free will,” the SC public information office, quoting part of Peralta’s ruling, stated.

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