Robredo, Marcos fined P50K each for publicly commenting on vote recount

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 26) —  The Supreme Court has fined the parties and counsels of Vice President Leni Robredo and former Senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. for discussing the vote recount case in public.

In the decision handed down Tuesday, both parties have been ordered to pay P50,000 for violating the sub judice rule.

Robredo's lead legal counsel Romulo Macalintal said they were only discussing the case in public to defend the vice president against the alleged lies being propagated by the Marcos camp.

"Sometimes, we have no choice but to speak out, in order for the public to be enlightened amid the relentless black propaganda, which aims to discredit the recount being spearheaded by the PET," he said in a statement on Wednesday.

He added they have yet to receive a copy of the resolution.

Marcos' spokesperson Vic Rodriguez, meanwhile, said their camp has been "respectful" of the Tribunal.

"We, however, respect the decision of the Court and will be more mindful of the sub judice rule in the future. We will continuously abide by the PET rulings as we continue our quest for justice in our on-going election protest," he said.

The sub judice rule prohibits parties from discussing the merits of a case pending a court resolution.

In April, the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) issued a show cause order against Robredo and Marcos for disclosing to the public sensitive information regarding the revision of ballots.

They were previously told to strictly observe the sub judice rule pending the recount.

"(C)onsidering that the revision process ìs about to commence, the tribunal directs both protestant and protestee to observe the sub judice rule," the PET said in its resolution dated February 13.

Marcos lost to Robredo by over 263,473 votes in the 2016 elections. The former senator then claimed fraud in media briefings, citing the appearance of squares in some ballot images.

CNN Philippines, Anjo Alimario, Pia Garcia, and Chad de Guzman contributed to this report.