Supreme Court suspends Manila judge for “inappropriate remarks” in court

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THE Supreme Court today suspended a judge in a Manila court for his “inappropriate remarks” inside the courtroom.

In an 18-page decision penned by Justice Alfredo Benjamin Caguiao, the High Court suspended Manila Metropolitan Trial Court (MeTC) Branch 26 Presiding Judge Jorge Emmanuel Lorredo for 30 days without pay for a less grave offense of “simple misconduct” and fined P40,000, and an additional P10,000 for “conduct unbecoming of a judge.”

The Supreme Court adopted the findings and recommendations by the Judicial Integrity Board that saw Lorredo as “administratively liable” for his homophobic remarks inside the courtroom.

Last 2019, litigants Marcelino Espejon and Erickson Cabonita filed a complaint against Lorredo.

During the preliminary conference, Lorredo allegedly showed “bias and partiality” toward the litigants and their sexual orientation by repeatedly asking them if they are homosexuals, and was even told that homosexuality is a sin.

However, the high tribunal insisted that similar remarks with “homophobic slur” has no place inside the country’s courts of law.

And because of Lorredo’s remarks, he violated the New Code of Judicial Conduct that obliges all judges to ensure fair treatment of everyone inside the court, and to understand the differences of people in terms of race, sex, religion, age, sexual orientation and social or economic status.

Lorredo’s acts, the High Court furthered, is a violation of the Civil Service Commission Resolution 01-0940 or the Administrative Disciplinary Rules on Harassment cases.

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