Mancao Wants Media, Not Lawyers, To Cover His Court Case

by Joseph G. Lariosa

CHICAGO (July 23) — Cezar O. Mancao wants the media to cover his court appearance. The media should not depend on a layer of spokesmen represented by other lawyers in the case who give different spins on his testimony.

If there is an issue with space to accommodate the media pack, then Mancao has no objection to a motion that the court proceedings be transferred to “a bigger courtroom.”

Arnedo Valera, Mancao’s lawyer based in Fairfax, Virginia, told this reporter he had an hour-long phone conversation with Mancao Wednesday (July 22). Mancao suggested to him that he needs “the media to help him in unveiling the truth on who is actually behind the Dacer-Corbito murder case.”

According to Valera, Cezar is complaining over the “distorted report of his testimony” on July 22, Mancao’s 46th birthday, “where some media reporters aired that Mancao received direct orders from Malacanang.”

Cezar clarified that what he told the court was that “sometimes Michael Ray Aquino receives orders from Malacanang. And Cezar is referring to Former President Joseph Estrada.”

Mancao said, “it is crucial that his testimony be accurately reported so that truth will come out and justice will prevail.

“Cezar also wanted an expeditious trial and he is hoping that no unnecessary delays will be caused by some lawyers, who are raising too many technical legal grounds at the expense of truth and justice.”

It was reported earlier that “Mancao claimed he previously reported directly to, and received direct orders from, former President Joseph Estrada.”

Valera said that Cezar is very trustful of the media as a whole because of the added security they have provided when he came home under the eagle eyes of the media.

He said, “as counsel of the Mancao family, Mancao agreed to my recommendation that in order to avoid any distortion and manipulation of his testimony in court, the media should be accredited and allowed inside the courtroom. And if there is a need to transfer to a bigger courtroom, I am sure that can be arranged.”

Valera suggested in order to gain access to court proceedings,  “the media should petition the court that in the exercise of their freedom of the press and speech, that they should be given access to the court hearings so that they can report truthfully to the nation the testimony of Cezar Mancao.”

Normally in big media events, like covering the White House, where space is the issue, newsmen agree to appoint a reporter, a photographer and videographer, from among their ranks, who come up with a “pooled report” and distribute the report to the rest of the media pack.

Valera quoted Mancao as saying: “I decided to return to the Philippines to tell the truth and give justice to the family of Dacer and Corbito and for the Filipino nation to know who are responsible for the Dacer-Corbito double murder cases. And I will tell the facts to the best of my personal knowledge who are involved and who ordered these killings.”

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