LETTER TO THE EDITOR | Releasing prisoners in non-bailable crimes: the Enrile precedent

by Atty. Manuel J. Laserna Jr.
Laserna Cueva-Mercader Law Offices

It is claimed that the courts have the discretion to grant bail in non-bailable offenses.

Note, though, that it’s Congress, exercising its constitutional power to legislate, that determines which crimes are bailable and non-bailable.

If the law is clear, it needs only to be applied, not interpreted, more so when the law sets no exceptions.

May the SC judicially legislate and impose its own exceptions when a penal law is clear as to its scope and application?

Is the matter of bail a simple Remedial Law procedure that is reserved only to the Judiciary to determine?

As we consider the pro hac vice bail ruling of the SC in the case Enrile, let’s not forget the thousands of old, sick, mentally disturbed and hopeless inmates languishing in our hellish prisons nationwide.

If we follow the SC’s application of humanitarianism in the case of Enrile, shouldn’t the Judiciary now take the proactive stance of studying the release of these suffering and dying inmates?

That is, if the SC believes that discrimination has no place in our justice system.
Atty. Laserna blogs at

DISCLAIMER: The views expressed here are those of the author’s and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of the editor.