Ex-mayor pleads guilty to breach of conduct
Elizabeth Marcelo (The Philippine Star) - December 2, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — A former city mayor in Quezon province has pleaded guilty in a criminal case involving an anomalous purchase of vehicle spare parts.

Former mayor Faustino Silang of Tayabas admitted violating Republic Act 6713 or the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees during his re-arraignment before the Sandiganbayan on  Nov. 25.

With his voluntary admission of guilt, the anti-graft court only imposed a fine of P5,000 against Silang.

Silang’s voluntary admission of guilt was in fulfillment of a plea bargain deal he entered into with the Office of the Ombudsman.

Under the deal, Silang would plead guilty to a lesser offense of violation of Section 7 (a) of RA 6713. 

In exchange, the ombudsman would drop the heavier case of violation of Section 3 (e) of RA 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, which it originally filed against Silang and five other former city officials in 2018.

Section 7 (a) of RA 6713 prohibits public officials from engaging in any transaction requiring the approval of their offices.

Violators will face imprisonment of up to five years or a fine not exceeding P5,000 or both, depending on the discretion of the court.

Section 3 (e) of RA 3019 prohibits public officials from giving unwarranted benefit, advantage or preference to a private party or from causing any party, including the government, undue injury.

Violators will face six to 10 years in prison and perpetual disqualification from holding public office.

The anti-graft court approved the plea bargain after the complainants did not object to the deal. 

Ombudsman Samuel Martires also approved the plea bargain deal. 

The Sandiganbayan said Silang’s five co-accused –  former bids and awards committee members Hector Oabel, Josefina Perez, Gilbert Oabel, Nelson Colladilla and Rolando Olivar – have pleaded guilty to violation of Section 7 (a) RA 6713, under a similar plea bargain with the ombudsman.

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