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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — Carlos Celdran on Friday (October 23) said that he is not giving up on his position that there’s nothing wrong with what he did five years ago, when he displayed a placard bearing the word “Damaso” during an ecumenical service inside the Manila Cathedral.
In his petition, Celdran asked the Supreme Court (SC) to acquit him from the crime of “offending the religious feelings” under Article 133 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC).
He also asked the court to declare this crime as unconstitutional.
"Ang Korte Suprema ay ang gatekeepers, ang guardians ng Constitution at halatang-halata na unconstitutional ang Article 133 because it defies freedom of speech. So I’m very confident that the Supreme Court will see things our way."
Celdran argued he cannot be convicted under a penal statute that violates the “most cherished” rights Filipinos have under the Constitution — the rights to due process, equality before the law, and freedom of speech.
He also pointed out that the RPC's Article 133 violates the constitutional principle of the separation of the Church and State.
In 2013, the Metropolitan Trial Court of Manila sentenced Celdran to serve a prison term of two months and 21 days to one year, one month, and 11 days.
Celdran went to the Manila Regional Trial Court and later to the Court of Appeals to appeal his case — but the two courts affirmed his conviction.
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