MANILA – Slain Filipina transgender Jennifer Laude’s camp has demanded P200 million from its initial P21 million for the actual, moral, and exemplary damages from United States Marine Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton.
“The P21 million was an initial computation of damages made,” Laude family’s legal counsel, Virgie Suarez, said in a Philippine Star report.
Pemberton’s camp, on the other hand, presented its evidences and witnesses who sought to prove that the circumstances of treachery, cruelty and abuse of superior strength were not present in the murder case.
Among those who stood in the witness stand were Pemberton’s mother, Lisa, and the accused himself. To Pemberton’s defense, he admitted choking Laude but only for self-defense.
But instead of downgrading the charges from murder to homicide, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima asserted that Pemberton’s testimony only strengthened the charges filed against him.
P38M, 6 US visas to drop case
Pemberton’s camp earlier disclosed that the claimants asked for P38 million and six US visas to drop the murder case against the accused.
Suarez, however, immediately refuted such demands.
“There is simply no truth to the alleged P38 million and six visas to drop the case. We are just awaiting for a decision come December 14, 2015,” she said in a GMA News report.
“Since the start of presentation of evidence in February 23, 2015, there have been no talks on settlement. There was only a discussion on plea bargaining as part of pre-trial and same was discussed only during pre-trial period early February 2015,” she added.
Suarez also clarified that they were not backing out from the case.