At 6:00 pm, September 16, Cedric Lee and Zimmer Raz were finally able to say goodbye to Camp Bagong Diwa and were on the way to Makati for a bienvenida dinner with their families and friends.
They became quite emotional as they bid their cellmates farewell, hugging and promising their newfound friends future visits. After five months of incarceration, Lee shared that he learned and experienced a lot, taking the time to reflect on what has happened to him. “Nagpapasalamat po kami kay Judge Esperanza na binigyan kami ng temporary liberty habang dinidinig pa ‘yung kaso namin.”
In an exclusive phone interview with TV Patrol’s Ted Failon, Lee gave his assurance that he had no plans of fleeing. “Sa katunayan, from day 1, sinabi ko naman na expired na ‘yung passport ko. Hindi ko naman po pina-renew dahil hindi naman po namin balak tumakas. Haharapin namin itong kasong ito hanggang sa dulo dahil alam naming matibay ang kaso namin.”
Aside from the serious illegal detention case, Lee also faces other charges. “May perjury and grave coercion pa, pero pero related cases naman po ‘yan,” he states. “Dinamihan lang nila ‘yung kaso para maperwisyo kami, iisang kaso lang ang pinagmulan lahat niyan.” Lee also faces charges on tax evasion, which he has yet to deal with.
Despite the temporary freedom, Atty. Calleja remains vigilant. “Hindi pa ito ang panahon para magbunyi o magsaya kasi mahaba pa ang proseso. This is only one step towards getting the truth in favor of our client.”