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Trillanes: Duterte bought info on supposed offshore accounts for P10 million

Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV on Tuesday revealed the source of the spurious information on his alleged offshore accounts in Singapore. AFP/Noel Celis, File

MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV on Tuesday claimed that President Rodrigo Duterte got his information on the lawmaker's alleged offshore accounts from a certain Daniel "Snooky" Cruz.

According to Trillanes, Cruz provided the information to the president for P10 million, and of this amount P3 million went to him.

"Ang gumawa at nag-imbento ng mga account na ito ay isang nagngangalang Mr. Daniel 'Snooky' Cruz," Trillanes said in a privilege speech on the Senate floor.

In the same Senate speech, Trillanes accused the president's family of having more than P2 billion in questionable wealth.

Cruz was also the person who offered to sell fictitious bank details of detained Sen. Leila De Lima to a Cabinet official last year, Trillanes said.

However, after the details were validated by the official, the offer was turned down by the senior government figure.

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The senator said that to bolster his credibility Cruz claimed that he was a financial forensic expert, was well connected in the US Embassy and was an agent of the American Federal Bureau of Investigation.

According to Trillanes, Cruz gave the details of the supposed offshore accounts on August 31. He added that there was even a photo of Cruz and the president  in the Palace on that day that proved his point.

Trillanes also pointed out the similarities between the details of his alleged DBS account and those of De Lima in his speech, indicating that Cruz might have a template of fake accounts he peddles to his prospective clients.

"Hindi pa nadala itong si Mr. Snooky Cruz. Pinalitan lang niya itong ibang detalye at binenta ulit sa mga taga Malacañang this time," referring to the accounts that he alleged Cruz tried to sell last year.

"Sa aking impormasyan ay binenta niya ito ng umaabot ng P10 million, pero ang napunta kay Mr. Cruz around three million, so may kumita na mga middlemen," he added.

Trillanes said that he got the information on the source of the president's information from members of the Philippine Military Academy working in the Palace.

Just recently, Duterte claimed on national television that Trillanes closed his bank account with DBS Singapore via the internet before he went to the island-nation with reporters to disprove the chief executive's accusation that he had offshore accounts there.

However, this was belied by a spokesman for the bank who said that closing an account should be done in the client's home branch.

This is not the first time that the chief executive has issued a questionable statement.

The president admitted that he "invented" the account number that Trillanes verified in Singapore supposedly to trick the lawmaker.

Duterte regularly issues statements and pronouncements that his spokespersons later clarify and explain.

Presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella even said last year that "creative imagination" was needed to understand the meaning of the president's pronouncements. 

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