US Marine’s mother tes­ti­fies in Filipino’s mur­der

The China Post - - LIFE GUIDE POST -

A U.S. Marine charged with mur­der­ing a trans­gen­der woman in the Philip­pines put his mother on the wit­ness stand to start his de­fense Mon­day, lawyers said.

Lisa Pem­ber­ton tes­ti­fied to the “good char­ac­ter” of her son Joseph Scott Pem­ber­ton at the closed-door trial in the north­ern port of Olon­gapo, his lawyer Rowena Flores told AFP.

He is de­tained at a Manila mil­i­tary camp, ac­cused of mur­der­ing Jen­nifer Laude whose re­mains were found in an Olon­gapo mo­tel room in Oc­to­ber 2014 shortly af­ter the two left a lo­cal bar to­gether.

Pem­ber­ton had been tak­ing part in joint U.S.-Philip­pine mil­i­tary ex­er­cises nearby.

The case has at­tracted na­tional at­ten­tion as the Philip­pines seeks closer de­fense ties with the United States in the face of Chi­nese ter­ri­to­rial claims in the South China Sea.

The mother, said by court of­fi­cials to be a 44-year-old nurse, was the first de­fense wit­ness af­ter Filipino pros­e­cu­tors had pre­sented their case.

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