WE ARE elated that finally our Highest Court has ruled favorably on our prayer that our client Mary Jane Veloso be allowed to speak out fully and put things on judicial record the horrible ordeal she went through.
The Supreme Court ruling announced Oct. 11 is very timely as the lower trial court gave us in the prosecution one last chance to get her testimony on Oct. 28 after extending the deadline from Sept. 26 when we fought tooth and nail to keep the fire burning.
She is the principal and last witness and private complainant in the human trafficking, illegal recruitment and swindling cases lodged against her local illegal recruiters.
It was a long journey since she was saved at the last minute from the gallows in 2015 after being framed up in 2010. We are very glad that the Court saw our reasonable position as officially articulated by the government lawyers who marched in sync with us on this specific case to seek justice.
Indeed, basic due process and fair play under the unique circumstances Mary Jane is suffering from tilted the balance. The ruling proved that rules of procedure as in many other cases should subserve substantive justice.
With this ruling, we are hopeful that the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth will come out and that not only will it decisively and ultimately impel Indonesia to make her reprieve permanent or free her by any legal or political means, that all the perpetrators of the misery she went through will be made to pay, but also that this precedent will contribute to providing succor to many others who will be victims of circumstance and injustice which can all be traced from our economic and social ills.
While her journey back home is still looming on the horizon as the judicial proceedings will have to shift course, this big legal victory is again a triumph of concerted efforts from her family, private and government lawyers, migrant, religious and lawyers groups and supporters worldwide.
In the end, it proves again that, indeed, despite misguided obstructionist tactics from her tormentors over the years at every juncture, “miracles” still do happen when persistent concrete action and arduous efforts from many platforms combine with sound legal principles and judicial wisdom.
(National Union of People’s Lawyers on the SC ruling allowing the taking of deposition of Mary Jane Veloso in Indonesia)