NBI to request bank records of COMELEC chair Andres Bautista

UNTV News   •   August 10, 2017   •   3024

IMAGE_UNTV_NEWS_080917_AGUIRRE

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre has revealed that the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) will request for the bank records of COMELEC Chair Andres Bautista from the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLAC).

It will be anchored on the information provided by Bautista’s wife Patricia who claims that the poll chief owns 35 accounts with the Luzon Development Bank with a total balance of Php329-million.

“That is one of my directives with AMLC, including some PCGG (Presidential Commission on Good Government) information about some anomalies, not referring to anybody. I’m still talking to PCGG officers,”  Aguirre said.

Last Monday, Aguirre directed the NBI to determine the possible liabilities of Bautista for his alleged failure to declare said bank accounts in his statement of sssets liabilities and net worth (SALN), as well as possible violations of the Anti-Money Laundering Act and other related laws.

Aguirre said whatever evidence NBI will gather could be used against Bautista. “It will be used if possible in the Senate, or in the House for purposes of these impeachment proceedings,” he  said.

What is important for now is to determine whether or not there is truth in the allegations against Bautista. – Roderic Mendoza | UNTV News and Rescue

Amendments to PH’s Anti-Money Laundering laws pushed in Senate

Robie de Guzman   •   March 5, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Senator Panfilo Lacson on Thursday, March 5 pushed for amendments to the country’s existing laws against money laundering amid the alleged influx of foreign cash into the country which is suspected to be linked to illegal activities.

“The bringing of huge sums of money in and out of the country in past months with seeming impunity indicates the urgent need for action from our government, not just by the Executive but also by the Legislative,” Lacson said in a statement.

“Our authorities should keep up with, if not keep one step ahead of, criminals who are trying to do the same,” he added.

He said that while there is a “need to address the corruption that that is one big reason for authorities’ tolerating money laundering,” the gaps at the existing laws, such as Bank Secrecy Law and the Anti-Money Laundering Act, should also be looked into.

“There is also a need to take a long, hard look at gaps in our existing laws, including the Bank Secrecy Law and the Anti-Money Laundering Act,” he said.

Lacson also said that the amendments to these laws should also make sure that they cannot be weaponized for political purposes.

The senator said he has experienced such abuse when some of his accusers prompted him to waive his rights under the Bank Secrecy Law to belie their claims that he has dollars in his account.

“And acting from those experiences, I proposed amendments to the AMLA and filed a bill excluding all public servants from the Bank Secrecy Act,” he said.

Lacson made the statement after Senator Richard Gordon claimed in a privilege speech on Tuesday that some $447 million or equivalent to P22 billion were brought into the country from September 2019 to February 2020, based on the report of the Bureau of Customs (BOC).

The sums of cash were allegedly carried by 47 individuals, mostly Chinese nationals, arriving in the Philippines from Hong Kong and Singapore.

Senate to probe PCGG for losing ill-gotten wealth case against Marcoses

Maris Federez   •   December 18, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The Senate Committee on Justice will conduct an investigation on the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) on the measures it has taken to sequester the ill-gotten wealth of the Marcos family.

Senate Blue Ribbon Committee chairman Richard Gordon will particularly question the PCGG’s failure to win the case against the Marcoses.

“Kung meron talagang ganung kalaking halaga, papaano nakuha yung perang yan. Yan ang unang tatanungin ko. Papaanong nakalap yan at bakit hindi ninyo maimbestigahan ng maayos para just follow the paper trail,” Gordon said.

On Monday (Dec. 16), the Sandiganbayan junks the 200-Billion forfeiture case against the Marcos family.

This is the fourth time that the PCGG lost its case in the Sandiganbayan. — (with details from Nel Maribojoc) /mbmf

Sandiganbayan junks 30-year-old forfeiture case vs. Marcoses, cronies

Marje Pelayo   •   August 8, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Sandiganbayan Second Division has dismissed the 30-year-old forfeiture case against the late former President Ferdinand Marcos, former First Lady Imelda Marcos, and cronies.

According to the anti-graft court’s decision dated August 5, the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) ‘miserably’ failed to show evidence that the accused accumulated billions worth of ill-gotten wealth during their time in office.

“Plaintiff (Philippine government) miserably failed to adduce evidence to hold defendants Ferdinand E. Marcos and Imelda R. Marcos liable under any of the causes of action set out in the amended complaint,” the court said.

“It saddens the Court that it took more than 30 years before this case is submitted for decision and yet, the prosecution failed to present sufficient evidence to sustain any of the causes of action against the remaining defendants,” it added.

The PCGG filed the case in July 31, 1987, accusing the Marcos couple and cronies of amassing huge amount of public funds.

The ruling said the PCGG “failed to illustrate” how the late ambassador to Japan Roberto Benedicto and other cronies served as dummies of the Marcoses to acquire alleged ill-gotten wealth from various “schemes, devices and strategems” during their regime.

Aside from the Marcoses, also cleared were Rafael Sison, Placido Mapa, Jr., Don M. Ferry, Jose Tengco, Jr., Ramon Monzon, Generosa Olazo, Cynthia Cheong, Ma. Luisa Nograles, Leopoldo Vergara, Jose Africa and Rodolfo Arambulo.

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