Menorca released on bail

Inquirer January 23,2016 - 09:39 AM
Former Iglesia ni Cristo minister Lowell Menorca answers questions from the media minutes after he was released from detention. (INQUIRER PHOTO)

Former Iglesia ni Cristo minister Lowell Menorca answers questions from the media minutes after he was released from detention. (INQUIRER PHOTO)

Lowell Menorca II, an expelled member of Iglesia Ni Cristo, was released from jail yesterday afternoon, with warning that he is ready to file counter charges against those who would continue to harass him with libel charges.

“I am appealing to those who filed the libel case to drop the charges. These cases wouldn’t prosper without the guidance of Iglesia. I’m asking them to drop the cases or else I will counter sue,” he said before leaving Ermita police station.

Menorca said the pieces of information that Society of Communicators and Networks (SCAN) International, used to file various libel cases against him “were out of context.”

Menorca said SCAN alleged that he accused their members of being used by INC for illegal activities.

“That’s not how I said it,” Menorca reiterated, adding he has “proof” that could show how his entire interview was spliced and twisted.

Menorca was freed around 3:40 p.m.

Judge Silverio Castillo of Manila trial court ordered Menorca’s release after the latter’s brother Anthony, together with lawyers from Free Legal Assistance Group, paid P20,000 or P10,000 for each libel case.

Hours before his release, another subpoena for third libel case in Cavite City was served on him at 10:45 a.m. yesterday by lawyer Arnel Hanabajal of Cavite provincial prosecutor office.

The subpoena required Menorca to appear before their office on March 4, 2016.

Menorca’s latest complainant was 26-year-old Irilyn Candelaria Yuvienco of Naic, Cavite. She filed the case on Nov. 8, 2015, and said the date of commission was Oct. 28, 2015.

She listed Jerson Mangubat and Rodney Ray Catalasan as her witnesses.

Before stepping out of Ermita police station, a visibly elated Menorca said in jest: “Wait, wait are there more arrest warrants?”

The joke elicited laughter as Menorca playfully looked outside the door as if checking whether roads were cleared.

“I just want to make sure it’s already safe to go out because they might order my arrest again,” he said.

Immediately, after stepping out the of the police station, Menorca basked in the afternoon sun and said: “fresh air.”

Then, he issued a tougher warning that he would file counter charges against those harassing him through legal means.

Menorca said he wanted to see his wife Seiko (also known as Jinky).

Menorca said his two-day stay in jail made him appreciate freedom more as it cemented his resolve to divulge “the truth” against certain members of INC officials.

“I am silent no more,” he said.

He said he reflected and prayed and even thought to forever staying silent in the issue. But he said he decided that he should “go for it.”

Meanwhile, the policemen who arrested him — PO3 Arnel Santos, and PO2s Dennis Ramos and Samson Sison, whom he complained of violent arrest last Wednesday, were recommended for awards and commendation by the Manila Police District.

The three got their orders to arrest Menorca from the head of MPD station 10 (Pandacan police) Supt. Edilberto Leonardo, a member of INC.

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TAGS: Iglesia ni Cristo, Inc., Lowell Menorca II

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