Oct 032014
 

http://wikileaks.org/cable/2006/09/06MANILA4067.html#

Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06MANILA4067 2006-09-25 08:07 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Manila
VZCZCXRO8591
OO RUEHNH
DE RUEHML #4067 2680807
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 250807Z SEP 06
FM AMEMBASSY MANILA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3133
INFO RUEHNH/AMCONSUL NAHA IMMEDIATE 0036
RHHMUNA/CDRUSPACOM HONOLULU HI IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC IMMEDIATE
UNCLAS MANILA 004067

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL MARR KCRM CASC RP
SUBJECT: MARINE CASE UPDATE 9/22/06

REF: MANILA 3919 AND PREVIOUS

¶1. The trial of four Marines continued the week of September
18 with testimony from forensic obstetrical and gynecologist
expert Dr. Teresita Sanchez, who testified that the injuries
sustained by the complainant do not suggest rape. SSgt Chad
Carpentier followed and testified that his first impression
of the complainant was that she was a “professional preying
on the vulnerability of Smith,” and that she seemed in full
control of herself. He denied that she was physically
removed from the van and pointed out that he did not pay
attention to any activity in the back of the rental van
because he was still looking for two more of his men. LCpl
Keith Silkwood and LCpl Dominic Duplantis also testified and
corroborated both LCpl Smith’s and SSgt Carpentier’s story.

¶2. The relationship between the government prosecution team
and the complainant and her private attorney remains rocky
after the complainant and her family publicly criticized the
prosecution’s performance. The complainant sent a letter to
Philippine Department of Justice Secretary Raul Gonzalez
requesting that four of the five prosecutors on the team be
replaced. According to the complainant and her attorney, the
prosecution team tried to bully her and her family into
accepting a settlement on the case. Senior State Prosecutor
Emelie delos Santos denied such a conversation took place and
labeled the complainant and her family “liars” and
“ingrates.” Secretary Gonzalez turned down the family’s
request to replace the prosecution team but did ask the
National Bureau of Investigations to look into allegations
that prosecutors pressured the complainant to accept a
settlement. The complainant and her family did not attend
the proceedings this week.

¶3. SSgt Carpentier gave an email interview to the
Philippines News Agency (PNA) on September 19 where he was
quoted as saying that he was “pleased with the way the
proceedings have gone so far.” He praised LCpl Smith’s
testimony as “honest and accurate…” and noted the
difference “between a witness that is speaking on the facts
and (is) honest, vice someone trying to remember rehearsed
testimony.” SSgt Carpentier quashed rumors of any settlement
talks, “(I) can assure you they did not originate from the
defense… (w)e did nothing wrong and will not entertain any
talk of settlement.” He speculated that the current,
strained relationship between the prosecution and the
complainant are “based on frustration…that our side of the
story is finally being heard.” SSgt concluded by saying,
“(t)his case has not given me a bad taste for the
Philippines; I don’t blame the Philippines for this happening
to me.” (SSgt Carpentier did not coordinate in advance with
Embassy on this interview, despite being advised of Embassy
policy for all USG employees to do so.)

¶4. Current U.S. Embassy public affairs talking points on
this case remain unchanged from last week:

– This has been an emotional and difficult case for everyone
involved.

– It is the principle of Philippine and American law that
anyone accused of a crime is presumed innocent until proven
guilty. The U.S. is committed to seeing that justice is
served, through a fair and impartial process that can provide
for a just outcome.

– The U.S. has cooperated with Philippine authorities in
accordance with the Visiting Forces Agreement since day one.
The case is being tried by a Philippine judge under
Philippine jurisdiction.

¶5. Mission continues to provide security, citizen services,
and other support to the defendants. Personnel from III MEF,
JUSMAG, the Regional Security Office (RSO), and the Consular
Section will continue to attend all court sessions. RSO
remains pleased with the extent and quality of security
support provided by the mayor’s office and police department.
The Consular Section continues to respond to family member
inquiries.

KENNEY

   

 

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