Claudine Barretto’s camp demands public apology from Sabrina M, threatens to sue in three days
Ferdinand “Ferdie” Topacio, Claudine Barretto’s close friend and lawyer in her previous legal battles, said he was determined to file a case against Sabrina M if she would not issue a public apology in three days for claiming she had dated the late actor Rico Yan.
In an interview with showbiz columnist Cristy Fermin on Thursday, July 13, Topacio stressed that individuals related to the aggrieved party—Barretto in this instance—could sue Sabrina for her supposedly false claims.
Topacio further noted that the narrative of the former sexy actress was “impossible” to have happened considering the timeline of Barretto and Yan’s public relationship.
“Ito ngayon ang malinaw, pwede pong mag-demanda ang sinuman basta malapit doon sa taong inaagrabyado,” Fermin reiterated as Topacio lost his connection during the video call interview. (What’s clear now is that anyone close to the aggrieved party can file a case [against Sabrina].)
“At sa pagkakataong po ito, si Attorney Ferdie Topacio ang gagawa ng paraan para kasuhan si Sabrina M kapag hindi humingi ng public apology si Sabrina M kay Claudine Barretto at sa pamilya ni Rico Yan,” she added.
(In this case, Atty. Ferdie Topacio will take legal action against Sabrina M if she does not issue a public apology for Claudine Barretto and Rico Yan’s family.)
As he returned on air, Topacio recalled how Barretto and Yan were “still trying to salvage the relationship” and “still living under the same roof” before the actor passed away in March 2002.
“Para gamitin mo ‘yung pangalan, lalo na ‘yung alaala ng isang [pumanaw na], para magkaroon ng noise sa iyong movie ay nakaririmarim po iyon. Karumaldumal na gawain po iyon,” Topacio told Fermin and her fellow host Romel Chika.
(To use the name of a person, especially the memories of someone who already passed away, to make noise for your film is sickening. That is a despicable stunt.)
“Parang pinapalabas niya si Rico Yan ay two-timer at si Claudine naman, kung alam daw ni Claudine iyon, ay parang napakababa naman ng moralidad ni Claudine na pumapayag siya na dalawa sila sa buhay ni Rico Yan,” he continued. “Hindi po ‘yan ang Claudine Barretto na kilala ko. Kalokohan po ‘yan.”
(It’s as if she’s saying that Rico Yan was a two-timer and Claudine, if she really were knowledgeable of the relationship, was lacking moral sense by allowing herself to be one of the women in Rico’s life. That’s not the Claudine I know. That’s absurd.)
Topacio said that a cyberlibel case can be filed against Sabrina, but that he is giving the latter a chance to take back what she said and apologize for it.
“Ang payo sa akin ng mga kaibigan natin dahil tayo naman ay Kristiyano, baka pwedeng [mag-sorry siya in public] para hindi na lumala ang usapang ito. Mag-sorry siya kasi kasiraan ‘yung sinabi niya in public,” the lawyer stated.
(My friends advised me, since I am a Christian, to ask [Sabrina] to say sorry in public to prevent this situation from further escalating. She must apologize because what she said is defamatory.)
Topacio also mentioned that he is on the same side with Ogie Diaz on the matter. It can be recalled that Diaz earlier disproved Sabrina’s dating claims as well, but it was not immediately clear if the comedian would also file a case against her.
Topacio then addressed Sabrina and said, “Mag-apologize ka na lang Sabrina M. Ayaw ko naman itong gawin sa’yo sapagkat iisang mundo lang naman ang ating ginagalawan.” (Just apologize Sabrina M. I don’t want to do this to you because we are living in the same world.)
“We are giving you three days from today—hanggang Linggo. Marami namang talk shows sa Linggo,” he added. (We are giving you three days from today—until Sunday, since there are a lot of talk shows every Sunday.)
Sabrina earlier said that she had a romantic relationship with Rico, further claiming that their romance blossomed when he was still fresh from his breakup with Barretto.
These claims have also been refuted by Sabrina M’s friend, Katrina Paula, who disclosed that the former had a huge crush on Yan but that the two never had a romantic relationship. /ra