Road rage suspect Vhonn Martin Tanto will have to find another lawyer to defend him from murder and frustrated murder charges filed against him before the Department of Justice (DoJ).
Tanto’s counsel, lawyer Rose-Beatrix Cruz-Angeles, was suspended by the Supreme Court (SC) from practice for three years along with her law partner Wylie Paler.
The SC has also ordered the two lawyers to pay P350,000 to Cleo Dongga-as who filed a complaint against them for their failure to handle the annulment of his marriage after paying them the amount which the lawyers refused to return.
The High Court warned the lawyers that their failure to comply will result in the imposition of heavier penalties.
Angeles indicated in her defense that she was not remiss of her duties, explaining that the complainant failed to give the address of his estranged wife and failed to provide sufficient evidence. While, Paler, who was tasked to draft and finalize the annulment petition, claimed that Dongga-as filed the complaint so he can avoid paying the attorney’s fees.
Tanto was caught on closed circuit television (CCTV) shooting dead cyclist Mark Vincent Geralde during a traffic altercation last July 25 in Quiapo, Manila. Also wounded during the incident was Rocel Bondoc, a college student. (Jeffrey G. Damicog)