VP, wife face bigamy, falsification of documents raps
MANILA, Philippines – They last saw their mother boarding a tricycle to leave Calamba, Laguna in 1979.
Twenty-eight years later, brothers Jhoveenel Ombus and Arjurie Omar Sinsuat Olor filed several charges against the woman they call their mother, including bigamy, at the Quezon City regional trial court on Thursday. Their mother is now the wife of Vice President Noli de Castro, also a respondent in the case.
Asked to comment on the charges, De Castro said yesterday these were politically motivated.
Jhoveneel, now 34, told the Inquirer they would not have gone to court if Arlene Sinsuat de Castro acknowledged they were her sons. “I was 6 years old and my brother was five when my mother left us. That was my last memory of her and she never looked back,” he said.
Jhoveneel said he and his brother went to ABS-CBN, where Arlene was then broadcast executive, to talk to her after seeing her name on television. They were allegedly prevented from seeing her by Arlene’s brother, Allan, who reportedly threatened to harm them if they revealed their relationship to Arlene.
“We tried to reach her for several years after that but she refused to speak to us and did not even acknowledge that we existed. This is our last recourse,” Jhoveneel said, referring to the charges of bigamy, falsification of public documents, perjury, threats and obstruction of justice against the De Castros. “We are not doing this for any financial consideration. We should not be punished for being her children,” Jhoveneel added.
He said they rebuffed offers from politicians wanting to use them against the vice president. “We have nothing against Noli but he cannot be separated from this complaint being the current husband of our mother,” he said.
The Olor brothers claimed the De Castros were married on July 16, 1991, although Arlene’s alleged previous marriage on Nov. 17, 1971 to Juanito Olor, their father, had not been “lawfully” dissolved. The brothers also accused the vice president of perjury when he allegedly stated on his marriage certificate that he was of the Islamic faith when “he is known nationwide as a Catholic and a devotee of the Black Nazarene in Quiapo.”
De Castro, on the other hand, said the move was a demolition job and that he intended to answer the charges in court.