Newspaper articles published on 13 January 2011 regarding a civil complaint filed by Messrs. Roman Reyes and Protacio Tacandong against Cirilo P. Noel (current managing partner) and David L. Balangue (former managing partner) presented an incomplete picture of the status of the case.

The articles conveniently omitted any mention of the fact that the court has decided to allow SGV to present, ahead of plaintiffs, its evidence in support of the grounds for its motion to dismiss the complaint filed against them by Reyes and Tacandong which are pleaded as affirmative defenses. This will be the purpose of the hearing on February 2. It is not a hearing on the merits of the complaint filed by the plaintiffs against SGV, Noel and Balangue.

In addition, the newspaper reports do not mention that the court had actually denied Reyes and Tacandong’s motion to dismiss the counterclaims filed against them by SGV. Instead, the court sided with SGV by allowing SGV to pursue its claims for payment of damages for breach of Reyes and Tacandong’s contractual obligations.

SGV had sought dismissal of the case based, among others, on the facts that first, plaintiffs’ prayer for dissolution has become moot; second, plaintiffs’ prayer for liquidation and accounting has been waived; third, there was a consideration of the settlement agreement; and fourth, the plaintiffs paid the incorrect filing fee.

At this point, SGV is constrained from divulging any further details in compliance with the sub judice rule. Sub judice means that a particular case or matter is currently under trial or being considered by a judge or court. In the Philippines, it is inappropriate to comment publicly on cases sub judice.

SGV complies fully with the sub judice rule and is prevented from fully defending itself in the court of public opinion. Nonetheless, SGV intends to defend itself from all allegations and, in turn, seek recourse for any and all violation of its rights that Tacandong and Reyes have committed but this will be done in the proper forum and venue. SGV will not resort to public mudslinging and unfair accusations.

SGV is committed to providing its clients with the best services and in upholding the highest ethical standards and rules of the profession. The existence of the civil complaint will not change this commitment. Furthermore, it has always been SGV’s policy to honor its contractual obligations for as long as said obligations are rightfully due and demandable. It will not hesitate, however, to protect its rights where its counterparty is in any way breaching his or her own obligations to SGV.