30 Air Force personnel face indirect contempt for trying to stop Apas, Cebu City demolition

THIRTY members of the Philippine Air Force (PAF) have been charged for disrupting the demolition in Lot 937 in Sitio San Miguel, Barangay Apas, Cebu City on Monday, November 14, 2022.

A case of indirect contempt was filed against them before the Regional Trial Court Branch 9 in Cebu City on Tuesday, November 15, by Sheriff Edilberto Suarin.

Suarin is the implementer of the court order to demolish structures on the property.

The demolition was temporarily halted on Monday when the PAF members installed a barricade in the area.

In his progress report that he submitted to the court, Suarin said he tried to talk to a Lieutenant Colonel Efren Cudal, legal officer of the 560th Air Base Group, but the latter reportedly refused to let members of the demolition team enter the property.

Suarin said Cudal informed him that the PAF was the administrator of Lot 937 and that he and his men were deployed there to secure the area.

Suarin said they also had a conference at the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) on Monday morning, which was attended by CCPO Director Colonel Ireneo Dalogdog, personnel of the PAF and the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) and Edgar Erice, representative of Mazy’s Capital Incorporate, Lot 937’s owner.

Suarin said the PAF and OSG personnel couldn’t produce a temporary restraining order (TRO) to stop the demolition, which was why the demolition resumed.

Erice, who was interviewed during the filing of the complaint, explained that the complaint was filed because the PAF members are still in the area and they again tried to stop the demolition without a TRO.

He said he was surprised by the arrival of the PAF personnel since Mazy’s Capital had already discussed the matter with the Visayas Command.

He said Mazy’s Capital is ready to face the PAF in court if the latter files a case against them.

Meanwhile, Erice said they also plan to file a case against an official of the OSG.

"Our lawyers are still studying the case, but definitely we will file a case also before the Ombudsman against the assistant solicitor general, Atty. Sharon Decano, because she misled police and she had the sheriff stop the demolition. You disobeyed the court. There is a pending petition before the Supreme Court but it was clear she didn’t have a TRO. She tried to use her position as assistant solicitor general to intimidate the sheriff to stop the demolition,” Erice said in a mix of Tagalog and English. (BBT, PJB)