Law expert thinks PRRD wrong re: Trillanes' amnesty

Since I take national issues seriously especially when they raise interesting -- and pressing -- questions of constitutional law, I researched on this question: Can an amnesty, once given, be revoked? Please note that in the following treatment, amnesty is taken as a sub-species of pardon. I realize that we have introduced distinctions between the two, but, in Am Jur's treatment of pardon, amnesty is taken as a kind of a pardon.

Here is one interesting and, to my mind, correct answer: "Before delivery and acceptance, a pardon may be revoked by the officer or body granting it, but after its delivery and acceptance, a pardon, if not void in its inception, cannot be revoked for any cause, for then it has passed beyond the control of the officer or body granting it, and has become a valid and operative act. Its recipient can be deprived of its benefits only in some appropriate legal proceeding. This is true even though the pardon was fraudulently obtained." 59 Am Jur 2d, "Pardon and Parole", Sec. 35.
Obviously, the article argues from the doctrine of the operative fact, although I prefer to argue from the doctrine of a vested right. When the State offered an amnesty that was accepted, the grantee had the right to expect that it would not be revoked and his right to be free of prosecution, trial and punishment vested from the moment of its acceptance. If there were not so, no one would take offers of amnesty seriously -- and this would be deleterious considering that, historically, amnesties are offered and proclaimed in the aftermath of some civil disturbance and it is desired that the State "move on" from its troubled, immediate past. Amnesties have generally been instruments of reconciliation and peace-making. Their usefulness would be impaired were they to be rendered uncertain by their susceptibility to revocation.

Of course, there is the question raised by PPRD's proclamation about the VALIDITY of the grant of amnesty, but that is an issue that is best settled in appropriate judicial proceedings, not by a unilateral presidential determination that the amnesty was void insofar as Mr. Trillanes is concerned.

SOURCE: Ranhilio Callangan Aquino via Facebook; September 4, 2018 at 7.37PM; https://www.facebook.com/rannieaquino/posts/2183496388346639

TRILLANES'S AMNESTY. President Rodrigo Duterte has invalidated the grant of amnesty to Senator Antonio Trillanes IV for failure to comply with its minimum requirements, Malacanang said Tuesday.

The Department of Justice and the Armed Forces' court martial were instructed to "pursue all criminal and administrative cases" against Trillanes over military uprisings in 2003 and 2007, according to a copy of Duterte's proclamation, which was confirmed by Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra. SOURCE: Trillanes amnesty voided; senator faces charges, arrest; ABS-CBN News; Posted at Sep 04 2018 10:26 AM | Updated as of Sep 04 2018 02:01 PM; https://news.abs-cbn.com/news/09/04/18/trillanes-amnesty-revoked-senator-faces-charges-arrest

FR. RANHILIO C. AQUINO. Fr. Rannie did his Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy degree at the Faculty of Arts and Letters, University of Santo Tomas and graduated in 1978 summa cum laude. He went on to do a Master of Arts in Philosophy degree at the same university, completing it in 1981, summa cum laude. www.central.com.ph/bookstoreplus/authordetails/111/

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