Baguio ‘narco judge’ faces administrative case

The Supreme Court (SC) has ordered the initiation of an administrative case for corruption against Baguio City Regional Trial Court Judge Antonio Reyes, the Philippine Star published on Friday.

The case was filed after SC approved the recommendation of a fact-finding panel led by retired associate justice Roberto Abad.

In a four-page resolution dated February 21 released on Thursday, the Office of the Court Administrators (OCA) was directed to proceed with the inventory of cases decided by Reyes and to investigate on the allegations that the judge reversed convictions in exchange for money.

Abad, as disclosed in an Inquirer story, reported that a Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) entrapment operation against the judge did not push through after discovering that the payoffs were made through his driver.

An investigation against Reyes’ driver was also ordered by the OCA.

Likewise, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) was requested to find a certain Paul Black whose affidavit dated October 26, 2007 said that he paid Php50,000 in exchange for the dismissal of a case against his wife.

A case against a certain Norma Domingo who supposedly negotiated with the judge regarding similar cases was also submitted.

Abad also cited anonymous letters from certain lawyers saying their clients admitted similar acquittals.

Reyes denied the allegations; saying the acquittals were solely based on evidence.

Earlier, President Rodrigo Duterte named Judge Reyes as protector of illegal drug trades.