Charges Junked Against Teacher Who Tweeted Reward for Duterte Killer

A court in Olongapo in the province of Zambales has dismissed the criminal case against the public high school teacher who tweeted an offer of a 50-million-peso reward to anyone who could kill President Rodrigo Duterte.

In an order dated June 24, Judge Richard Paradeza of the Olongapo Regional Trial Court granted Ronnel Mas’ motion to quash the charge for inciting to sedition in relation to cybercrime.

The judge said Mas was illegally arrested by the National Bureau of Investigation, thus stripping the court of jurisdiction over him.

Mas was arrested without a warrant in Zambales and detained in Manila for a week last May. After he was charged in court, he posted bail of 72,000 pesos and was released.

In its order, the court said it was “disturbing” that the NBI arrested Mas “merely on the basis of the statements given by Julius Hallado, six days after the subject text was posted in the aforesaid Twitter account.”

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