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A Series of Unfortunate Events

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1 A Series of Unfortunate Events on Mon Sep 24, 2012 3:20 am

Damsel in Distress

Arresto Menor
Hello. I badly need legal help. I am beyond desperate.

My mom and I were accused of large scale illegal recruitment in February of this year by 16 complainants. We had a tenant who introduced himself as a former OFW in UAE. He told me stories about his life there and I ended up asking him for help. He said that he will help me work in a hotel in Dubai since his sister is working there as an HR secretary and that she is looking for several people to refer. I asked my brother if he wanted to apply as well, along with his wife. There were a lot of people who ended up applying because news spread fast that me and my brother were also applying. We introduced some of our friends to our tenant and they all agreed to go. Part of the deal were for the applicants to give P20,000 as a security deposit to ensure that no one will back out because if someone will back out, his sister will be liable to pay the hotel in dubai for the placement. As you can see, the stories are very well manufactured. Everyone believed him. The money was supposed to be refundable as soon as our visas arrives. unfortunately, he disappeared right on the day that our contracts and visas were supposed to arrive. the other victims turned against us. I admit that I assisted our tenant in as far as receiving the money for him whenever he is not available. i trusted him so much. we even paid for all the requirements and clothes of four of our relatives that we wanted to bring with us in order to help, trusting that there really is job for all of us there. i just thought i was helping him, plus i could not refuse his requests because of the "utang na loob" thing that i magnanimously felt for him them.

so we hired the services of a lawyer. he was supposed to furnish our counter affidavit. we provide him with everything the he asked of us, including a blow by blow account of the incidents that led to our misfortune. weeks passed. i know that we are only supposed to have 10 days before we are able to submit out affidavits. i would usually visit our lawyer and ask about the status of our affidavit. he would usually say that he has asked for an extension. he seemed like he knew what he was doing, therefore i relaxed. i kept on coming back until april but the affidavit still has not been passed yet. i told his secretaries that we might end up getting a warrant instead, if the affidavit will not be submitted. their response was, "that's okay, it's only an affidavit". so with that, i thought that my lawyer knew what he was doing. last july, i took a job at a different city so i had to relocate. i was no longer able to go back to my lawyer. At the end of july, our lawyer went to our home and advised my mom to hide because the warrant was already out. When i learned of this, I had to quit my job for fear that I might be picked up at the office, plus my mom was always worried sick of me.

we were shocked because we thought that we will still be given a chance to tell our side of the story, and perhaps even have the case dismissed. unfortunately, we were not given that chance. I was looking forward to finally meeting with all the complainants so that we can tell them our side of the story, with judges and lawyers around us. I was hoping that the case will be dismissed for me and my mom and that the only person who will be left on the case will be our tenant. unfortunately we were not given that chance.

So now we are in hiding and our lawyer is insisting that we pay off the complainants are return to them their money. unfortunately we do not have that big an amount. also, i believe that we might be able to get off the case after our side has been heard. there are complainants who are ready to testify for us. we have a lot of evidence that we did not have a share in the money and that we did not know that there was no job in dubai. had we known, we wouldnt have allowed my brother to resign from his job of 13 years and help our relatives as well.

I have an intuition that our lawyer does not want to withdraw from the case because he knows that he was negligent and that it is his fault that the prosecutor's office had to base their decision based only only on the testimonies of the complainants. He might be thinking that we will get back at him if we transfer to another lawyer.

right now, we have a lawyer who is willing to help us however the old one is insisting that he keep the case. i have told him that i want him to withdraw from the case but he simply turns a deaf ear to my requests. the other day, my brother went to his office in order to ask for the withdrawal but he was unable to tell the lawyer of his purpose because the latter barraged him with overwhelming info - that he has already started the settlement and that he has even given them money already.

Please help me. What should I do? I have done research and I found that my old lawyer already has a similar case of negligence in 2001. he failed to provide the petition paper for his client, resulting to the dismissal of the case, which the client did not even know of, had he not gone to the hall of justice himself after two years of filing the case.

I want to talk to IBP or to anyone who can help me. I know that there is a possibility of bringing the case back to the prosecutor's office but what is the perfect way to do it?

i am so desperate. everyday my heart bleeds for my mom. she is a retired teacher and has never been away from home for more than three days. we have been hiding now for two months and i see no hope because of my old lawyer. My mom is an emotional wreck because we havent had any kind of experience that is as traumatic as this. we were looking for a day in court, to explain our side but out good lawyer has denied us of that because of his negligence.

i hope to hear from you, i know that i should pay for your advice but please... u dont know what else to do. my new lawyer does not want to do anything until we already have the withdrawal from the old one. Please help me.

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2 Re: A Series of Unfortunate Events on Mon Sep 24, 2012 3:25 am

Damsel in Distress

Arresto Menor
Please do not judge us po pala for hiding at this point. There is no bail for illegal recruitment. :-( Wala po kaming kasalanan. We were also victims, all seven of our family, four of which kami pa ang gumastos para sa passport, damit, medical, dental pati pustiso, not to mention ung requirements din namin. I'm just hoping na may paraan pa para ibalik sa prosecutor's office and kaso so we can have our day in court.

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