Mary Jane Veloso to finally testify in case vs. alleged illegal recruiters
Mary Jane Veloso, a Filipino on death row in Indonesia, will finally be allowed to testify against the people who allegedly tricked her into transporting two kilos of heroin through the Yogyakarta Airport in 2010.
The National Union of Peoples' Lawyers (NUPL) announced on Saturday that Veloso will give her testimony against her alleged illegal recruiters, Maria Cristina Sergio and her partner Julius Lacanilao in April.
"Finally, after a protracted and tedious legal wrangling over quite novel circumstances, Mary Jane will be able to freely tell her whole story and cruel ordeal which will be officially considered by the Philippine trial court," the group representing Veloso said on Saturday.
While the court granted the prosecution's motion to take Mary Jane's deposition in 2016, several motions made by the defense had stopped her from testifying.
"Being the victim, Mary Jane is the most credible and competent witness that could prove not only the guilt of the accused in these Philippine cases but, eventually and more importantly, the full and unabbreviated circumstances that led to her conviction in Indonesia," the NUPL said.
Veloso will answer written questions during her deposition at the Yogyakarta prison with Judge Castillo-Reyes as observer, NUPL lawyers, state prosecutors from the Department of Justice, representatives of the Department of Foreign Affairs, and the defense counsels of Veloso's recruiters.
The NUPL noted that the scheduled deposition –taking place on April 27 –falls almost exactly on the same date (April 29) Veloso was granted a reprieve from execution two years ago.
"The Veloso family prays that no further delays or impediments shall come along the way. To them, justice that is delayed is, much more in fact than in law, justice that is denied," the NUPL said. —Rie Takumi/LBG, GMA News