MANILA, Philippines — Broadcaster Rafael “Raffy” Tulfo on Tuesday dismissed the bigamy case filed against him by a woman claiming to be his wife, saying it was “plain and simple extortion” because he refused to pay the P100 million the woman demanded.
Lawyer Lifrendo Gonzales, legal counsel of complainant Julieta Nacpil Licup, said Monday that a bigamy case was filed against Tulfo before the Office of the City Prosecutor in Quezon City.
Gonzales said Tulfo’s marriage with Licup “is still subsisting” when he married his second wife in 1995, which was a ground for bigamy
READ: Bigamy case filed vs Raffy Tulfo — lawyer
Tulfo, however, said the complaint was only part of an extortion try.
“Hindi po ako kumukunsinti sa anumang uri ng blackmail at extortion. Ito po ay plain and simple extortion. Gusto nya pong mag-extort ng pera para gumanda raw po ang buhay na nilang mag-asawa,” Tulfo said on his show on Radyo Singko.
(I am not going to tolerate any blackmail and extortion. This is plain and simple extortion. She wants to extort money to make her life better.)
Tulfo said they had an “understanding” that they will live their own lives and Licup had re-married.
“Then one day ito pong si Mrs Julieta Licup Pearson ay nag-request na makipagkita sa akin at pinaunlakan ko naman po sa isang restaurant sa Quezon City. Yun pala, ang reason ng kanyang pakikipagkita sakin ay yang humingi ng P25 million,” Tulfo said.
(Then one day, this Mrs. Julieta Licup Pearson requested to meet with me, and I agreed to meet him in a restaurant in Quezon City. I didn’t know that her reason for the meeting was to demand P25 million from me.)
“On top of that gusto nya po ay yung kalahating buwan ng sweldo ko, kada buwan, ibibigay ko sa kanya (On top of that he wants half of my salary every month),” Tulfo added.
Tulfo said he refused to accede to Licups’ demands.
“Tumanggi po ako, sabi nya siya po ay maga-alburoto at sisiraan nya ako sa media kapag hindi ako pumayag. For the second time, tumanggi po ako sa kanya at sinabihan ko siya na hinding-hindi ako maggigive in sa blackmail at extortion,” Tulfo added.
(I refused, so she threatened to ruin my reputation in the media. For the second time, I refused and told her I will not give in to any form of blackmail or extortion.)
After the elections, Tulfo said he received a “final demand letter” from Licup’s lawyer demanding P100 million.
“They hope na ibibigay ko na ang demand na P100 million. Dahil kung hindi, ako ay malalagay sa isang embarrassment. At tinupad nga po nila ang kanilang banta,” the broadcaster added.
(They are hoping that I will give them P100 million because they threatened to put me in an embarrassing situation, which they did.)
Tulfo said the complaint was only a part of extortion try and insisted that he would only give financial help to his child with Licup.
“Sabi ko sa kanya, kung ako ay magbibigay ng pera, iyon ay para sa anak ko (I told her I will only give money to my child),” Tulfo said.
“Hinding-hindi ako magbibigay ng pera para sa iyo. At kung mayroon man akong P25 million doon initial request niya, hindi ako magbibigay ng kahit singkong duling sa’yo dahil ikaw ay nagbabanta, bagkus ay ibibigay ko na lang iyon sa mahihirap nating kababayan na pumupunta dito sa amin para humingi ng tulong,” the broadcaster added.
(I will not give money. If I have P25 million, I will not give it to her because she is threatening me. I’d rather give it to the poor who comes to us.)
Tulfo also claimed that before Licup married a certain Arthur Joseph Pearson, she filed a declaration of presumptive death for Tulfo to make it appear that he had died so they can eventually marry and go to the United States.
“At yun na nga po, yung kanyang ifi-nile na presumptive death para sa akin ay inaprubahan naman po ng korte sa Pilipinas kaya natuloy ang kasal nila (The court approved the petition, so they were able to marry),” he added.
Tulfo added that Licup refused to give the number of their child when he asked for it in December 2018. However, as advised by his legal team, he will not further comment on the issue.
An opportunity to settle the issue
Asked to comment on Tulfo’s claims, Gonzales said the letter demanding the broadcaster P100 million was “an opportunity for both parties to sit down and settle the issue.”
Moreover, Gonzales said “there was no extortion” as they are only seeking to “compensate for the damages that his wife and child suffered psychologically and emotionally due to his alleged willful abandonment.”
Gonzales said their camp never received a response from Tulfo. (Editor: Eden Estopace)
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