SC suspends Atty. Gadon over abusive language - The Daily Sentry

SC suspends Atty. Gadon over abusive language

“Abusive and intemperate language” have been the premise of the Supreme Court that compelled it to suspend Atty. Larry Gadon who coined himself  “anti-bobo man”.

The firebrand lawyer, who lost in the recent senatorial elections, rose to fame as the man behind the impeachment of the ousted Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.

Back in 2018, he made headlines after he called the then top magistrate's supporters "mga bobo" (stupid people) as he flashes dirty finger at them outside the compound of the high court in Baguio City.

ABS-CBN News recently discovered that on June 26, the “bobo” heckler has been suspended by the Supreme Court 2nd Division for 3 months over the use of “abusive and intemperate language” towards a doctor and a fellow-lawyer. Another bases stated was that, Gadon used words that “lessen the confidence of the public in the Philippine judicial system.”

Looming Disbarment

A dermatologist filed a disbarment complaint back in 2009. According to the report,
Gadon allegedly "unilaterally suspended in March 2009 from a mall-based healthcare facility on the basis of a complaint from a patient".

The dermatologist then complained of reduced clinic hours, to which Gadon, corporate secretary and vice president of the healthcare facility, supposedly revoked her privilege to work with the clinic through a rudely-worded letter.

Gadon told the dermatologist, in a letter dated April 23, 2009, that the clinic can make her work unproductive because they can hire another in-house dermatologist to compete with her schedule, “that is if you will win” after “8 to 10 years (RTC, CA, SC)” “as we have a lot of resources.”

He was referring to the different court levels: the Regional Trial Court, Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court.

SC found that this letter is against the Canon 1 of the lawyers’ Code of Professional Responsibility (CPR), which prohibits lawyers from counselling or abetting activities aimed at defying the law or lessening the confidence in the legal system.

“Atty. Gadon’s remarks about the slow justice system and insinuations that cases are won based on abundance of resources, tramp the integrity and dignity of the legal profession and the judicial system and adversely reflect on his fitness to practice law,” it said.

Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Commission on Bar Discipline ealier found that Gadon’s responses in the pleadings he filed during the investigation of the disbarment complaint against him were “malicious and arrogant.”

These remarks included calling the complainant-dermatologist and her lawyers’ statements “outrageously funny and ridiculous,” “totally devoid of any logic and reason” and “outrageously hilarious.”

Other statements from said lawyer were “Are these people suffering from Alzheimer’s or what have you? Where do they get these gutter logic and reasoning?”, “ambulance chaser who is full of bravado, empty rhetoric, and grandstanding.” (referring to  complainant’s lawyer), “This is the dumbest and the most stupid statement,” “people who have read this statement nearly died of laughing,” “the people responsible for writing this statement ought to commit suicide for being too ignorant.”

SC pointed out that these statements violated Rule 8.01 of Canon 8 of the CPR, which prohibits lawyers from using abusive, offensive or improper language. It reminded Gadon to control his “emotional outbursts.”

“The adversarial nature of our legal system does not sanction an attorney’s use of foul or intemperate language, whether spoken or in pleadings,” the resolution reads.

“…[T]e language imputing ignorance and wrong-doing to complainant’s counsel goes against the Rule on candor, fairness and truthfulness since Atty. Gadon did not argue against the complainant’s issues but against the propriety of the legal advice dispensed by the counsel of the complainant. This is uncalled for and will not help in the disposition of the case at hand. Instead, it muddles the issues and misleads the focus of the judicial process altogether,” it continued.

However, the highest court said disbarment is too severe, prompting it to impose a 3-month suspension instead.

“to commence immediately upon receipt of this Resolution…with stern warning that a repetition of the same or similar act in the future shall be dealt with more severely.” it said.

SC ordered Gadon to report the date of his receipt within 5 days for the Court to determine when his suspension takes effect.

Not yet in effect

Atty. Gadon is currently in Russia. According to the latter, he has not yet received a copy of the ruling “so it’s not yet implemented.”

The lawyer said he looks into considering filing a motion for reconsideration as soon as he receives the copy while noting the time it will take as it might consume 3 years to be resolve unlike the 3-month suspension.

In a message to ABS-CBN News, he said: “It does not affect Bikoy cases, kasi aside from not being implemented, in the Bikoy case, the complainant is CIDG (Criminal Investigation and Detection Group). My role is personal legal counsel adviser of Bikoy,”

“So even assuming for the sake of argument that the suspension is in effect, my role as counsel for Bikoy can’t be prevented,” he added.

Source: ABS-CBN News