Archive for November, 2010

Philippine News: Supreme Court To Decide On Hubert Webb Case

Posted in All About The Philippines, Philippine News on November 20, 2010 by JJ Duque
Free Hubert Webb

Free Hubert Webb

Hubert Webb was in the Paranaque City Jail since August 1995 when he was arrested as an alleged prime suspect on the Vizconde Massacre. After his conviction for murder five years later, he has since been in jail at the Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa. It has now been 15 years that Hubert Webb has been in jail.

I personally got to visit Hubert Webb during the first day of his arraignment hearing, and maybe only visited him one other time in the Paranaque City Jail throughout those 15 years. Before all this happened, we were good friends from the same neighborhood of BF Homes, Paranaque. We played basketball on afternoons at the Phase 3 basketball court and even hung out afterwards for a beer or two or more along with other friends.

As much as I would like to personally vouch for the innocence of Hubert Webb, it is sad that the wheels of justice in the Philippines have not turned favorably for him.

The Perspective on Court of Appeals regarding the case against Hubert Webb eventually led to a Division of Five vote during the motion for reconsideration, and the justices voted 3-2 AGAINST the motion of Hubert Webb. Justices Rodrigo Cosico, Regalado Maambong and Normandie Pizarro were the voting majority who denied the motion for reconsideration.  Meanwhile, Justices Renato Dacudao and Lucenito Tagle voted in favor for Hubert Webb.

On the part of the majority vote by Cosico, Maambong and Pizarro – their primary reason for denying the motion rests largely on the evidence of government star witness Jessica Alfaro, a former drug addict, who pointed out Hubert Webb as the prime murder suspect in her testimony during the trial. That’s all they really had to go by.

Meanwhile, the reasons given by Dacudao and Tagle are such that:

According to Justice Dacudao, based on the highlights of the dissenting opinion in the motion for reconsideration, the case is clear and simple – Hubert Webb could not have committed the crime because he was not even at the scene of the crime, nor was he even in the country at that time. Dacudao also points out the valuable testimony of former presidential legal counsel Atty. Antonio Tirol Carpio, (who is now a member of the Supreme Court), who attested to a phone conversation with former Senator Freddie Webb on June 29, 1991 (some 12 hours before the crime was committed), who at that time was in Anaheim, California, along with his son.

Moreover, Justice Dacudao also puts a bad light on the testimony of Jessica Alfaro, which he suggests was filled with improbabilities and contradictions.

Justice Tagle‘s dissenting opinion talked clearly about the evidence presented by the defense as to Hubert Webb’s alibi, and these evidences included: (1) the departure and arrival stamp of Hubert Webb on his passport; (2) the US Immigration stamp on his passport; (3) and the testimony and certification of the US Immigration regarding the validity of the travel documents of Hubert Webb.

On the Justice For Hubert Webb Facebook page, the page administrators concede:

Despite all the strong documentary evidence to prove otherwise, Hubert Webb still languishes in jail due to the supposed “eyewitness” whose credibility is in question. The semen sample from the victim which can be used for DNA testing is conspicuously lost. Something has to be done with this travesty of justice.

We condemn the criminals who raped and murdered the Vizcondes but putting the jail innocent people for the crime they did not commit is not justice at all.

Please understand that we have given everything required to prove that hubert was in the U.S. when the crime occured.You name it, we gave it.

1. record of departure including ticket, ticket receipt,(with accompanying testimony from raja tours owner Bibay Nolasco), airline manifest (with accompanying testimony from a northwest airline official), passport with departure stamp from the Bureau of Immigration

2. record of entry which includes an F.B.I. report, a note verbal issued by the U.S. government signed by Secretary of State Madeline Albright stating that Hubert Webb was in the U.S. testified to by no less than both foriegn secretary Domingo Siazon and Consul General Leo Herrera Lim

3. records of his stay which includes: Videos – one in Disneyland (testified to by a complete stranger who saw Freddie Webb and decided to video him), one at Lake Tahoe and another at a cousins wedding wedding ceremony Records of employment in the form of several encashed checks in his name Hubert Jeffrrey Webb before and after the crime California Drivers License aquired during his stay, certified by the Department of Motor Vehicles California Dozens of eyewitness accounts all of which were excecuted by upstanding members of society all of which have much to lose had they perjured themselves in court, the most prominent of all being Entertainer Gary Valenciano. Supreme court justice Antonio Carpio also testified that he knew that Hubert was in the U.S, based on his conversations with my father who was in the U.S. right before the time of the incident.

4. records of his departure which includes again the certification from the U.S. stating his date of departure, airline manifest testified to by an authority from the Philippine Airlines, Passport showing entry into the Philippines We have givem everything humanly possible to prove he was in the United States four months before and fifteen months after the massacre occured. He only has one record of ever going to the U.S.A and it was only during the period we claim he was there.

Pease take note that: NOT A SINGLE PIECE OF EVIDENCE WE PRESENTED WAS EVER REFUTED OR PROVEN TO BE FALSE BY THE PROSECTION. THEY COULD HAVE EASILY ASKED THE UNITED STATES IF THE DOCUMENTS WE PRESENTED WERE FAKE BUT THEY DIDN’T. WHY? BECAUSE THEY KNEW OUR DOCUMENTS WERE REAL.THEY COULD HAVE EASILY CAUGHT HUBERT IF THEY ALLOWED DNA TESTING FROM THE BEGINNING BUT THEY OBJECTED TO IT. WHY? BECAUSE THEY KNEW THAT IT WASN’T HUBERT’S SPERM BECAUSE THEY KNEW THAT HE WAS IN THE UNITED STATES.

We have waited fifteen long years for some people to start believing. Due to a judge and prosecution without any concience, my brother has suffered much for a crime he very clearly did not do. All we pray is that he be set free so that he can pick up the pieces start to live what he has left of his life. Let truth prevail.

On November 23, 2010 – the Supreme Court will finally give their decision on this case. It is my hope as a friend of Hubert Webb, and as a believer in justice and truth, that he will be set free. I encourage everyone to pray that justice and truth be served.

You can see videos relating to this and other documents at the Justice For Hubert Webb Facebook page.

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Philippine Events: Olive Magazine Launched At Ayala Museum

Posted in All About The Philippines, Duke420 Articles, Philippine Events, Philippine News with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 20, 2010 by JJ Duque

I arrived late at the recent Olive magazine launch held at the Ayala Museum lobby just this week. I immediately greeted Bella Luce Publications big boss Nick Tuason, and gave my heartfelt congratulations for another magazine under his belt. So far, Bella Luce Publications has Wedding Belle, Digital Photographer, Lonely Planet Philippines, iCreate, Junior and now Olive!

Olive Magazine Now In The Philippines

Olive Magazine Now In The Philippines

Olive is a monthly magazine published in the UK by BBC Worldwide, and Bella Luce Publications have been able to get the license to open up a local version of Olive here in the Philippines.  Here in the Philippines, the magazine’s editor-in-chief is none other than Stephanie Zubiri, who earned her star in the culinary scene with the very reputable The Modern Epicurian Kitchen – an institution which is part cooking school-slash-catering business that promotes the fine art of living, and the process and results that are part of that palatable journey. Definitely, Olive is blessed to have someone like Stephanie Zubiri, who exudes a good energy and has a fresh perspective on the culinary scene in the Philippines and abroad.

While I didn’t get to congratulate Stephanie Zubiri personally that night (she was too busy being hounded by everyone else), I managed to pass along the message through her brother and old friend Senator Miguel Zubiri, who was with his beautiful wife Audrey. My congratulations also to the ever efficient people of Bella Luce Publications like Marta Luque-Araneta, Pilar Tuason and Madie Pfiffner-Dinglasan.

It was a fun night overall – and it was great to see friends like Audrey Carpio, Joanna DeOcampo, Jackie Verano, Jay Pou, Cay Rodriguez-Araneta, Fiona Lucas-Araneta, Pip Zorgani, RJ Ledesma and his wife Vanessa, and Ines Cabarrus, who will be having a second run of the annual Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secrets Awards soon.

My only concern – I feel like I should be the one to say it – is that the open bar wasn’t running as optimal as I would’ve expected, considering that it was the launch of a culinary magazine. You just simply can’t serve warm beer over ice on a wine glass, nor can you serve wine on a margarita glass. The lack of glassware to match the cocktails was befuddling. I would’ve thought that the launch of a top culinary magazine would’ve hired a caterer equal to the task of serving Manila’s glitzy set. The caterer should’ve known to have chilled the beer earlier, and prepare the right glassware for the occassion. I mean – if it were the launch of an un-culinary magazine, then this faux pas could’ve been forgiven. I just had to say – not to bitch – but to raise constructive criticism for the caterer, or maybe just to the poor schmuck responsible for hiring them.

But then again, that’s just the open bar – and I’m sure that slight glitch won’t take away anything from the greatness of the magazine, which will certainly continue to have an impact on the Manila food and restaurant scene. There will be great articles in Olive, ranging from exciting recipes, restaurant reviews and so much more, and it comes at a great time in Philippine lifestyle history when our range of tastes and foods has started to expand.

Once upon a time, you would mention a handful of good restaurants when you mention Japanese cuisine or Chinese cuisine. Now – there are too many to mention because of the growth of the restaurant and food service industry throughout the country. The launching of Olive will certainly be a critical portal which will open many eyes to the wonders of the food scene in the Philippines as well as share articles from the mother publication of BBC Worldwide.

Needless to say – you should go find a copy of Olive soon.