^

Headlines

Gov't prosecutors nearly jeopardized case vs Jinggoy

Dennis Carcamo - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - The special prosecution panel nearly jeopardized its case against Sen. Jinggoy Estrada and the other accused in the pork barrel fund scam with its motion to admit its amended charge sheet.

In the amended charge sheet, the Office of the Ombudsman makes Estrada the mastermind of the pork barrel scam, instead of businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles.

Associate Justice Roland Jurado, presiding justice of the Sandiganbayan Fifth Divison, told the prosecution that amending the information may prompt the court to release Estrada, who is already detained for plunder.

"The effect (of amendment) is that the accused will be released," Jurado said told the prosecution.

The Office of the Ombudsman wanted to "emphasize that the [Estrada] was the one who amassed, accumulated and acquired ill-gotten wealth in connivance of in conspiracy with his co-accused public officer and private individuals," including Napoles.

Associate Justice Alexander Gesmundo, member of the Fif Division, told the government prosecutors that they should be precise in the words that they use on their charge sheets.

Gesmundo clarified that the word "conspiracy" is totally different from "collaboration" and "connivance."

The prosecution team had initially argued that the amendment only changes the "form" of the information and "does not touch the substance."

However, the prosecution team was forced to withdraw its motion following the justices' warning that they may be forced to recall their earlier decision finding probable cause to order the arrest of Estrada for the plunder trial.

The Fifth Division, meanwhile, has submitted the motions for bail of Estrada and Napoles for resolution.

The arraignment of Estrada and Napoles for plunder charges has been set on Monday, June 30.

The other respondents facing plunder and graft charges before the same division are John Raymund de Asis and Paulene Labayen, the senator's staff.

ASIS AND PAULENE LABAYEN

ASSOCIATE JUSTICE ALEXANDER GESMUNDO

ASSOCIATE JUSTICE ROLAND JURADO

ESTRADA

ESTRADA AND NAPOLES

FIF DIVISION

FIFTH DIVISION

JANET LIM-NAPOLES

JINGGOY ESTRADA

OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN

  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with