And they are now officially charged.
At past noon yesterday, the DOJ led by its Secretary Leila de Lima went to the Office of the Ombudsman to officially file charges of plunder and malversation of public funds against 3 Senators, Janeth Lim-Napoles and some other former Congressmen. Included in the complaint were Senators Juan Ponce – Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Ramon Bong Revilla Jr. and former members of the House of Representatives Rizalina Seachon – Lanete of Masbate, Edgar Valdez of APEC partylist, Rodolfo Plaza of Agusan, Constantino Jaraula of Cagayan de Oro and Samuel Dangwa of Benguet.
The DOJ-NBI group handed truckloads of evidences to the Ombudsman which includes documents from COA audit and DBM and other testimonial evidences from the 16 whistle-blowers led by the state witness Benhur Luy.
According to the summary of complaint, the 5 legislators Enrile, Estrada, Revilla, Lanete and Cruz conspired with Janeth Napoles to mis-appropriate their PDAF funds and divert it to their own pockets via commissions and kickbacks which amounted to more than 50 millions pesos. Result of the NBI’s investigation have found out that these lawmakers collected the following amounts from their dealings with Napoles;
1. Sen. Ramon Revilla Jr – 224,512,500Php
2. Sen. Jinggoy Estrada – 183,793,750Php
3. Sen. Juan Ponce-Enrile – 172,834,500Php
4. Frmr. Rep. Rizalina Seachon-Lanete – 108,405,000Php
5. Frmr. Rep. Edgar Cruz – 56,087,500Php
With these findings, the NBI recommends the Ombudsman to subject the respondents to preliminary investigation for the purpose of filing the appropriate charges before the Sandigan Bayan.
Meanwhile, aside from the legislators mentioned above, NBI also recommends filling necessary charges to these lawmakers staffs and personnels/heads of Janeth Napoles’ bogus NGOs. Here’s the list of other respondents to the plunder case filed before the Ombudsman.
1. Atty Jessica Lucila Reyes – Chief of Staff, Sen. Enrile
2. Atty. Richard Cambe – Staff, Sen. Revilla Jr.
3. Ruby Tuazon – Representative, Sen. Estrada and Enrile
4. Pauline Labayen – Staff, Sen. Estrada
5. Jose Sumalpong – Chief of Staff, Cong. Lanete
6. Jeanette dela Cruz – District staff, Rep. Lanete
7. Erwin Dangwa – Chief of Staff, Rep. Dangwa
8. Carlos Lozada – Staff, Rep. Dangwa
9. Alan Javellana – frmr Pres. NABCOR
10. Gondelina Amata – Pres. NLDC
11. Antonio Ortiz – frmr Dir. Gen. TRC
12. Dennis Cunanan – frmr Dep. Dir. Gen. TRC
13. Salvador Salcup – frmr Pres. ZREC
14. Jocelyn Piorato – Pres. APMFI
15. Nemesio Pablo – Pres. AEPFFI
16. Mylene Encarnacion – Pres. CARED
17. John Raymud de Asis – Pres. KPMFI
18. Evelyn de Leon – Pres. PSDFI
19. Ronald John Lim – Pres. GAMFI
20. Victor Cacal – NABCOR personnel
21. Romulo Revelo – NABCOR personnel
22. Ma. Ninez Guanizo – NABCOR personnel
23. Julie Johnson – NABCOR personnel
24. Rodhora Mendoza – NABCOR personnel
25. Alexis Savidal – NLDC personnel
26. Sofia Cruz – NLDC personnel
27. Chila Jalandoni – NLDC personnel
28. Francisco Figura – TRC personnel
29. Marivic Jover – TRC personnel
3 Senators maintained innocence
Hours after the cases where filed in the Ombudsman, the 3 Senators issued statements on media maintaining their innocence over the alleged plunder case filed against them. Unanimously, the 3 Senators vowed to fight the case fair and square. Sen. Jinggoy Estrada maintained that he have nothing to do with the scam and that he didn’t benefited from it. Sen. Enrile (who was in hospital when the charges were filed) on the other hand slams DOJ’s investigation saying it was a hasty investigation and filling but he vowed to fully cooperate with the investigation. And Sen. Revilla Jr. vehemently denied pocketing millions from his PDAF allocation saying the truth will eventually come out.
Now that the case has been filed, let’s continue to be watchful and vigilant because justice should really be served this time. The amount of money that is involved in this case is dis-heartening knowing the situation of our country. People involved here should be held liable and should be punished accordingly so we can have precedence. We should not let this issue die down and we should not let the perpetrators of this scam enjoy their life in the expense of our countrymen’s sufferings.