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Fortun as Cedric's new lawyer: Justice must be served

By Camille Diola


MANILA, Philippines - Lawyer Raymond Fortun is businessman Cedric Lee's new representative in the controversial case on the mauling of actor Vhong Navarro.

Fortun announced this in a public post on his Facebook account on Thursday, saying that he believes Lee's case deserves a boost.

"Because of what this powerful media network and the NBI have done way beyond their respective duties to the public, Cedric Lee is, in my eyes, an underdog. Justice must be served," Fortun said.

Fortun said that his "tipping point" in deciding to offer his services to Lee's camp, currently led by lawyer Howard Calleja, came while watching an airing of ABS-CBN's "The Buzz" where Lee, after being interviewed, is analyzed by a body language expert.

Related: Vhong affirms affidavits vs Cedric, Deniece

"As my wife Carole Fortun and I were watching the explanation, I could not help but blurt out, 'This is b******t!'," Fortun said.

"That The Buzz episode made me realize how a powerful media entity can use its unlimited resources in order to sway public opinion to demonize a person. This, as a lawyer dedicated to bring out the truth, I cannot accept," he added.

The Navarro-Lee controversy is among the recent highly public cases Fortun involved in. He is also in the midst of national-level issues as legal counsel for petitioners against the controversial Disbursement Acceleration Program of the Aquino administration.

Read: Fortun: Cedric's P2M request not extortion, only settlement

Fortun, whose side the Supreme Court granted in permanently stopping the Priority Development Assistance Funds, admitted that he loves representing underdogs and enjoys the "good fight."

"I relish handling the toughest cases. Lawyering for me has never been about the money. It's about the pursuit for truth and justice, it's about fairness and equality," he said.

He also said that he decided to lend his voice to make the "truth" louder. Justice, he said, "must not be in accordance with the conductor's beat of someone along Panay Avenue."

"I contribute my voice into this dispute not to twist the truth but to make sense of the madness ... At the end of the day ... my only comfort is that i can face my Maker with a straight face and tell Him that I had done my duty to Him and to my profession," Fortun said.

Related: Lee, Cornejo charged for 6 offenses in Vhong attack