MANILA, Philippines—A Quezon City court has allowed the release of the P426,917,646.96 surety bond posted earlier by TV host Willie Revillame in connection with a civil case lodged by network giant ABS-CBN two years ago.
Judge Alexander Balut of Regional Trial Court Branch 76 directed the discharge of the bond for being unnecessary and for being moot and academic.
Revillame, a former ABS-CBN talent, posted the bond in compliance with an October 2010 resolution issued by Branch 84 Judge Luisito Cortez for the TV host to post the P426 million bond to answer for any damages that might be incurred by ABS-CBN while he is hosting a new variety show on TV5.
In 2010, the host filed an P11-million damage suit against his old employer, asking the court to make a judicial confirmation of the end of his contract with ABS-CBN.
In response, the network slapped him with a P426-million counter-claim for allegedly reneging on his contract set to expire in 2011.
In a six-page order, Balut dismissed ABS-CBN’s application for preliminary injunction. He also considered as moot the injunction hearings set last October 7, 20, 21, 2011; November 10, 11, 17, 24 and 25, 2011 and December 1, 2011.
The court order was based on Revillame’s 2011 omnibus motion for the release of the surety bond, the cancellation of the injunction hearings and to dismiss the bid for preliminary injunction for being moot and academic.
In its counter-claim, ABS-CBN also sought a temporary restraining order against Revillame’s hosting of TV5’s “Willing Willie” show.
Cortez, who was then hearing the case, only required Revillame to post the surety bond.
Following the non-issuance of the TRO, the ABS-CBN asked Cortez to inhibit from the case, which was soon granted.
Balut also suspended the proceedings of the main case, pending finality of a Court of Appeal’s decision of the case between TV5 versus ABS-CBN and Makati City judge Joselito Villarosa, docketed as CA-G.R. SP No. 117063.
The ruling decision refers to the granting the petition for certiorari and prohibition filed by the ABC Development Corporation, Villarosa’s reversal of the Dec. 2 and 17, 2010 orders and the dismissal of the infringement case filed by ABS-CBN against TV5. Villarosa also made the preliminary injunction being asked by TV5 as permanent.