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Sandigan justices asked to inhibit selves from DPWH case

Due to their reputation as a "conviction court," justices of the Sandiganbayan’s fourth division have been asked by Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) employees accused in an alleged P134-million vehicle repair scam to inhibit themselves from the case.

"It came to the knowledge of the accused that the Sandiganbayan’s fourth division has the highest rating of conviction at more than 85 percent," said the 26 employees accused in the case in an eight-page motion.

The respondents filed the motion seeking to have Associate Justices Jose Hernandez, Rodolfo Ponferrada, and Gregory Ong, who acts as division chairman, inhibit themselves from the case "to preserve (the division’s) integrity and independence."

Those who filed the motion were DPWH motorpool section chief Maximo Borje Jr.; administrative and manpower management services director Burt Favorito; and assistant directors Florendo Arias, Erdito Quarto, Agerico Palaypay, Napoleon Anas, Danilo Planta, Rogelio Beray, Norma Villarmino, Ricardo Juan Jr., Nelson Umali, Maria Luisa Cruz, Melissa Espina, Violeta Tadeo, Jessica Catibayan, Violeta Amar, and Ronaldo Simbahan.

Also joining them in the motion were private respondents Conchita de la Cruz, Janette Bugayong, Julio Martinez, Jesus Capuz, Rodelia Uy, Romeo Fullido, Nonette Fullido, Victoria Go, Carmelito Edem, Augusto Capuz, and Vicente Santos Jr., who were spare parts suppliers and private contractors of the DPWH.

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