[Blueboard] Ateneo beats UP in Square Off finals [ABS-CBN News]
Marry Ann I. Romero
mromero at ateneo.edu
Mon Nov 15 11:09:55 PHT 2010
Congratulations to the Ateneo Law School debaters namely Roland Glenn
Tuazon, Kazimir Kira Ang and Joseph Roman Dela Cuesta. The Ateneo team was
declared champion at the recently concluded ANC Square Off: The CVC Law
Debates Season 3.
Ateneo beats UP in Square Off finals
By David Dizon, ABS-CBN News
Posted at 11/12/2010 9:13 PM | Updated as of 11/13/2010 10:30 PM
MANILA, Philippines - Three champion debaters from Ateneo de Manila Law
School on Friday defeated their rivals from the University of the
Philippines (UP) College of Law in the finals of ANC Square Off: The CVC Law
Debates Season 3, hosted by Twink Macaraig.
It was sweet victory for the Ateneo team, composed of Roland Glenn Tuazon,
Kazimir Kira Ang, and Joseph Roman Dela Cuesta, after they lost in last
season's final against Ateneo de Davao.
Tuazon, Ang and Dela Cuesta successfully argued for the affirmative that
Vizconde massacre convict Hubert Webb should be acquitted after the State
failed to produce the semen specimen that could prove his innocence.
The winning team argued that the loss of possibly exculpatory evidence
amounts to a violation of due process for the accused, which could be used
as ground for acquittal.
Tuazon, who was named Best Speaker by the judges, argued that the Vizconde
case could set a precedent in jurisprudence for "determinative justice and
not vindictive justice."
He said failure to acquit Webb on the basis of the prosecution's loss of
possibly exculpatory evidence would be "an affirmation of a trend where the
National Bureau of Investigation can be slipshod in handling evidence."
On the other hand, members of the UP team -- Marie Michelle Go, Neil Nucuo
and Al-Zhoheir Hajim -- said acquittal should not hinge on lost evidence
when its probitive value has yet to be determined. They said Webb and his
co-accused were convicted based on the testimony of Jessica Alfaro and other
evidence presented by the prosecution.
They also noted that even if the semen specimen turned up not to be Webb's,
it still would not prove that he was not present at the crime scene.
UP inconsistent; Ateneo well prepared
Atty. Ricky dela Cruz, who was one of the adjudicators, noted the
inconsistency in the arguments of the UP team as to whether to consider the
probitive value of the potentially exculpatory evidence or to consider the
suppression or loss of the evidence as being the relevant issue in the case.
Another adjudicator, Atty. Pancho Umali, praised Ateneo for being well
prepared in terms of research of the facts of the case, jurisprudence and
the legal arguments. "They presented their case convincingly, clearly and
with poise if I may say so," he said.
Atty. Ernest Maceda Jr., dean of the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila
College of Law, noted that the Vizconde case was a "watershed moment" for
the legal profession.
"It is an excellent opportunity for us to assess the strengths and
weaknesses of our criminal justice system in relation to the innocence of
persons. But if there is one thing that DNA testing will not disprove, it's
how competent your attorneys and counsels are, and I think we saw tonight
that we are in the presence of great future lawyers," he said.
The other adjudicators in the Square Off finals are Atty. Andy Bautista,
chair of the Presidential Commission on Good Government and current dean of
the Far Eastern University Institute of Law, and Atty. Elma Leogardo, senior
partner of CVC Law.
Marry Ann I. Romero
University Communication and Public Relations Office
Ateneo de Manila University
Katipunan Avenue, Loyola Heights, Quezon City
T - 426-6001 local 4095
E - mromero at ateneo.edu
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