Arraignment of Belleza’s sexual assault case moved to another date
The arraignment of the sexual assault case against Tawag ng Tanghalan’s first grand champion Noven Belleza did not push through on Tuesday after the handling judge left Cebu for an official travel.
Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 5 Judge James Stewart Ramon O. Himalaloan was in Malacañang for an official business and will be back in Cebu on Thursday, said an office staff.
The staff who asked not to be named said that the new schedule for the arraignment of Belleza’s case will be known as soon as Himalaloan reports back for work.
Belleza, a rice farmer from Negros Occidental, became popular after he was named grand champion in the Tawag ng Tanghalan, a talent search aired on ABS-CBN’s noontime program “Showtime,” in March.
He was arrested on July 15 shortly after he appeared in a Cebu concert of Showtime host Vice Ganda held at the IEC Pavilion on accusations that he sexually molested a Cebuana singer in a condominium in Barangay Lahug where he was staying.
But the rape charge which the woman filed against Belleza was downgraded to sexual assault for lack of sufficient basis.
Since sexual assault is a bailable offense, Belleza was released from detention on July 18 after payment of bail of P120,000.
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