In its 15-page opposition paper filed on April 10, the ombudsman’s Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) asked the anti-graft court’s Third Division to deny Andaya’s motion for reconsideration seeking the reversal of its March 6 ruling denying his motion to quash the cases.
Edd Gumban
Ombudsman blocks Rolando Andaya’s appeal on Malampaya raps
Elizabeth Marcelo (The Philippine Star) - April 16, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Office of the Ombudsman has urged the Sandiganbayan to stay firm on its decision to proceed with the formal trial of 194 criminal cases against former budget secretary and incumbent Camarines Sur Rep. Rolando Andaya Jr. in connection with his alleged involvement in the P900-million Malampaya Fund scam.

In its 15-page opposition paper filed on April 10, the ombudsman’s Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) asked the anti-graft court’s Third Division to deny Andaya’s motion for reconsideration seeking the reversal of its March 6 ruling denying his motion to quash the cases.

“The information in these cases are valid, complete and contain factual averments that sufficiently establish the elements of the crimes which accused Andaya is charged with. Hence, plaintiff submits that there is no valid ground to quash the (case)  information,” the prosecution’s opposition paper read.

The prosecution said Andaya’s motion for reconsideration was filed beyond the reglamentary period of five days upon the receipt of resolution as provided under the Supreme Court’s “Revised Guidelines for Continuous Trial of Criminal Cases.”

Furthermore, the prosecution said Andaya’s appeal must also be denied for being “unmeritorious” with mere rehash of the arguments he already raised in his motion to quash.

Andaya is facing before the Third Division 97 counts of violation of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and another 97 counts of the complex crime of malversation of public funds through falsification of public documents under the Revised Penal Code.

Filed by the Office of the Ombudsman in December 2017, the cases stemmed from the alleged misuse of P900 million in government income from the Malampaya natural gas project intended for farmers affected by Typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng that hit the country in late 2009.

Andaya is accused of conspiring with other government officials in allegedly funneling the P900-million fund to bogus non-government organizations owned by businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles for supposed livelihood projects which turned out to be “ghosts” or were never implemented.

The ombudsman said Andaya approved the release of the fund by signing a Special Allotment Release Order (SARO) and a Notice of Cash Allowance (NCA) despite the absence of clear basis and supporting documents.

In his appeal to the court’s denial of his motion to quash, Andaya maintained that the charge sheets filed by the ombudsman are “fatally defective” as they supposedly failed to specify how he committed the alleged crimes and how he supposedly conspired with his co-accused.

MALAMPAYA FUND SCAM ROLANDO ANDAYA JR
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