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Aguirre open to De Lima’s Senate probe request on Jack Lam bribery scandal

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, January 11th, 2017

Senator Leila de Lima, as supposed, has the right to appeal to the Senate to investigate into the bribery scandal involving two former Bureau of Immigration (BI) officials.

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre said it will even help shed light on why is there a large number of foreign national illegally working in the Philippines.

It can be recalled that Chinese online gambling tycoon Jack Lam allegedly attempted to bribe former BI commissioners Al Argosino and Michael Robles with P100 million in exchange for the release of over 1,300 Chinese illegal workers arrested in his Fontana Casino in Clark, Pampanga.

“Para malaman natin kung ano’ng ginawa niya bakit nagkaroon d’yan ng malakihang illegal na mga staying ‘yung mga foreigners? What did she do during her incumbency as secretary of justice? Mayroon bang nag-ninong d’yan sa mga yan?” Sec. Aguirre said.

(So that we will know what she did why there is a large number of foreigners illegally staying [in Fontana]. What did she do during her incumbency as Secretary of Justice? Do the [Chinese] have a coddler?)

On the other hand, Sen. De Lima withdrew her resolution filed with the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee.

She now wants the Civil Service Committee to conduct the probe for a more extensive investigation.

“It has to do with the thorough review of structure and systems within the BI, with the end view of precluding, minimizing, if not precluding altogether acts of corruption among its ranks,” said Sen. De Lima.

De Lima has earlier expressed concern over the President’s allegedly favoring Argosino and Robles.

Sec. Auirre, however, said investigation of former BI officials should be entrusted to the Office of the Ombudsman.

“Nagkakaroon lang ng political color kasi parang lumalabas niyan na gumaganti lang siya eh, sa mga finile sa kanya,” Aguirre said.

(It would only seem that [the Senate inquiry] is politically-motivated because it would appear that she is only retaliating for the cases filed against her.)

Aside from the Ombudsman, the BI, the DOJ, and the NBI have separate investigations too. — Roderic Mendoza | UNTV News & Rescue

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