by:Mickey Ingles (Image from @calvinabuevaofficial. Full video here c/o ABS-CBN)
Already serving an indefinite suspension from the PBA and a possible revocation of his professional basketball player license by the GAB, Calvin Abueva is now facing something even more serious—possible jail time.
A few days ago, Sam Abueva, the wife of Calvin, came out on social media and spilled the beans on their rocky marriage. In a live video, Sam alleged that Calvin abused her, with the latest incident occurring a few weeks ago when she claimed Calvin tried to force her to have sex with him. Sam, who is pregnant, said she was hospitalized after she started spotting because a drunk Calvin went on top of her. Sam also said that she had video evidence proving that Calvin abused her and their kids. She posted CCTV screenshots on the same IG account, presumably of these incidents.
If Sam’s allegations are indeed true, Calvin may face charges of violating the Violence Against Women and Their Children Act (VAWC) and attempted rape. Both are discussed below.
VAWC, as its name suggests, is a law enacted to essentially address violence committed against women and children. “Violence against women and their children” is any act or series of acts committed by any person against the following:
- A woman who is his wife or former wife,
- A woman with whom the person has or had a sexual or dating relationship,
- A woman with whom he has a common child, or
- Against a woman’s child, whether legitimate or illegitimate.
Violence includes physical, sexual, psychological, and economic abuse. If Sam’s allegations are indeed true, Calvin’s physical and sexual abuse of his wife puts him squarely within the ambit of VAWC. Jail time for physical abuse under VAWC can be as long as twelve years, depending on the severity of the injuries sustained by Sam.
In the meantime, Sam could apply for a barangay protection order (BPO) with her barangay if she chooses to do so. The BPO is an order to prevent further acts of violence against a woman or her child and can be applied for even before a case is filed in court. The BPO could order Calvin to leave their residence or direct him to stay away from Sam and their children, among other remedies.
Note that another former basketball star has been accused of VAWC before: Bong Alvarez. We wrote about that incident here.
On Sam’s allegation that Calvin tried to have sex with her without her consent, this may constitute attempted rape under the Revised Penal Code. Attempted rape occurs when the offender commences the commission of rape by overt acts but does not perform all the acts of execution by reason of some cause or accident other than the offender’s spontaneous desistance.
When the law talks of “overt acts”, these are external acts which would logically result in rape, i.e. sexual intercourse without the consent of the victim. Sam’s statement that Calvin was on top of her may be the overt act that both showed Calvin’s intent to have sex with her without her consent and the act that would’ve “logically resulted” in rape. The question now is why Calvin desisted—was it out of his own volition or not?
Whenever marital rape is raised, there will always be your usual host of cavemen who will claim that rape is perfectly legal when it comes to one’s spouse. That, of course, is not true.
In the 2014 case of People v. Jumawan, the Supreme Court ruled that unconsented sex, even in the context of marriage, is rape. Husbands, the Supreme Court stated, do not have property rights over their wives’ bodies—which should be the most obvious thing in the world if not for husbands who still live in the dark ages.
To further its point, the Court even began with this quote:
“Among the duties assumed by the husband are his duties to love, cherish and protect his wife, to give her a home, to provide her with the comforts and the necessities of life within his means, to treat her kindly and not cruelly or inhumanely. He is bound to honor her x x x; it is his duty not only to maintain and support her, but also to protect her from oppression and wrong.”
A good reminder for all the husbands out there. Not only Calvin.
Mickey Ingles is the editor-in-chief of Batas Sportiva.