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Sandigan affirms ‘pork’ cases vs ex-Davao lawmaker

Elizabeth Marcelo (The Philippine Star) - April 16, 2017 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Sandiganbayan has affirmed the graft and malversation cases filed against former Davao del Sur congressman Marc Douglas Cagas IV and 24 other individuals for their alleged involvement in the pork barrel scam.

In a resolution promulgated recently, the anti-graft court said Cagas’ motion to dismiss the case is devoid of merit.

The Sandiganbayan also denied the motions for reconsideration filed by former Budget undersecretary Mario Relampagos and employees Rosario Nuñez, Lalaine Paule and Marilou Bare.

“The petitioners failed to show new arguments that can warrant a reversal of this court’s resolution handed down in December 2016,” Presiding Justice Amparo Cabotaje-Tang said in the ruling.

The charges, filed by the Office of the Ombudsman in April 2016, involved two counts of violation of Republic Act 3019, or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, and two counts of malversation as provided under the Revised Penal Code.

Aside from Cagas, the other respondents in the case are former Energy Regulatory Commission chief Zenaida Ducut, alleged pork barrel scam brains Janet Lim-Napoles and former officials of Technology Resource Center and National Agribusiness Corp.

The ombudsman alleged that Cagas pocketed P5.5 million for allocating P7.5 million of his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) or pork barrel to fake foundations.

It said Cagas personally picked the Napoles-linked foundations to implement his PDAF-funded projects.

No bidding was conducted for the projects, anti-graft investigators said, adding there is sufficient ground to hold the respondents for trial.

 

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