DOJ’s ultimatum for Bikoy: Bring your evidence to NBI or face sedition charges

MANILA, Philippines – Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra issued an ultimatum on Wednesday, May 8, to Peter Joemel Advincula alias Bikoy that if the latter does not go to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to present evidence to back up his claims against the first family, then he will be charged with inciting to sedition too.

Guevarra’s statement came after the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) declined Advincula’s request for legal aid to sue presidential son Paolo Duterte and the president’s most trusted aide, Bong Go. Advincula has sensational claims about the younger Duterte and Go’s alleged drug dealings.

“The NBI is waiting for Advincula/Bikoy to show up and submit his complaint with supporting evidence against the persons he implicated in the illegal drug trade,” Guevarra said.

The justice secretary added: “Should he fail to do so, the Department of Justice (DOJ) will consider his possible inclusion in Rodel Jayme's inciting to sedition case or indictment for other criminal charges after proper investigation.”

The DOJ panel of prosecutors on Tuesday, May 7, charged webmaster Rodel Jayme of inciting to sedition for creating Metrobalita.net which the NBI claims to have significantly spread Bikoy’s videos. (READ: Looking at 'inciting to sedition' in the time of Duterte)

Jayme insists he merely created the website and did not have a hand in the uploading of videos. Jayme has so far said the people who asked him to create the website are supporters of the Liberal Party. Facebook chats implicate the Magdalo group of opposition senator Antonio Trillanes IV which purportedly offered financial assistance so Jayme could go into hiding.

The NBI called Jayme a potential state witness.

The charges against Jayme and the ultimatum against Advincula are part of an aggressive manhunt by multiple agencies of the government since the Bikoy videos were released online. 

Senate President Tito Sotto on Wednesday said Advincula had done a similar accusation in 2016 but that was against former president Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III. Sotto said he disregarded the incredulous claims, and warned others not to take Advincula seriously.

Heeding Sotto, Senator Panfilo Lacson cancelled the Friday hearing which will supposedly delve into the claims of Advincula against members of the first family. – Rappler.com

Lian Buan

Lian Buan covers justice and corruption for Rappler. She is interested in decisions, pleadings, audits, contracts, and other documents that establish a trail. If you have leads, email lian.buan@rappler.com or tweet @lianbuan.

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