Monday, February 13, 2012

0 Cayetano to defense: Name your source

Senator Alan Peter Cayetano grills defense lawyer Jose Roy III during the sixteenth day of the impeachment trial of Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona. The insulted senator challenges the defense panel to reveal their source after they alleged the Malacañang of offering P100 million to the senator-judges to defy the Supreme Court's TRO restraining the Senate from looking into Corona’s dollar accounts.

Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano: Is any of you, defense counsels, also [a member] of the media?

Atty. Jose Roy III: Not that I’m aware, your honor.

Cayetano: Okay. So I asked that because we are all aware that the members of the media have the source privilege granted to them by a Republic Act.

Roy: Yes, your honor.

Cayetano: But is the source privilege also given to [lawyers]?

Roy: There is a fundamental right, your honor, which we draw comfort from. It is found in Paragraph E, Section 20 of Rule 138. And essentially, it states that the lawyers are under oath, at every peril to themselves to preserve the secrets of the client, your honor.

Cayetano: But you will confirm to me that the attorney-client privilege is only available when there is an attorney-client relationship.

Roy: That is exactly the case, your honor.

Cayetano: So unless the source is your client, then you are bound to reveal the source if this Impeachment Court asks you to reveal such?

Roy: Your honor, the reference to the attorney-client relationship pertains to the conduct of all the business of the client. Whenever we receive information in our professional capacities, which relate to the business of the client for which we have been retained, your honors, then it is covered by the mantel of the privilege.

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