Samonte assumed the post vacated by Alfredo ‘Gerry’ Geronimo who retired from the government service last year.
Samonte is the eldest son of the late-Renato ‘Rening’ Samonte and Lucia dela Cruz of Taliptip, Bulakan, Bulacan and became the president of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (Gat. Marcelo H. Del Pilar – Bulacan chapter) from 2009 to 2011.
Bulacan Governor Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado welcomed the appointment of Samonte by President Aquino as a fitting tribute to the qualification and capability of a true-blue Bulakenyo at the helm of the prosecution service, an indispensable pillar in the administration of justice in the province.
Samonte, who has an extensive law practice all over Metro Manila and Central Luzon spanning three decades, finished A.B. Political Science at the Ateneo de Manila University and graduated from the San Beda College of Law in 1980.
His adept skills as a trial lawyer was honed and polished during his more than 10 years practice at the Law office of Dakila F. Castro where he litigated high-profile criminal cases, one of these was the libel case filed by then President Corazon C. Aquino.
Chief Prosecutor Samonte is well-remembered for the brilliancy he displayed during Day 34 and Day 35 of the impeachment trial of SC Chief Justice Renato C. Corona where he crossed-examined former Manila Mayor Lito Atienza.
Then lead counsel for the defense, justice Serafin Cuevas, was blanked and rebuffed not once but thrice by Prosecutor Samonte while grilling ex-Mayor Atienza in connection with the irregularity in the sale of the Basa-Guidote property in Legarda, Manila.
Aside from playing golf, ‘Attorney Jun’ is also an avid gun-enthusiast like former IBP president Jose ‘Peng’ dela Rama and incumbent Bulacan IBP-chapter president Ted Villanueva.
He is also a boat-racing aficionado and once a member of the Philippine delegate to the RP-Japan boat-racing competition. Aside from being an all-around sports enthusiast,
Samonte is also a collector of vintage and fancy cars and a former president of the Mini-Cooper Club of Bulacan.—EMIL G. GAMOS