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Nation

Clerk of court’s conviction for malversation affirmed

Elizabeth Marcelo - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The Sandiganbayan has affirmed the conviction of a former clerk of court in Virac, Catanduanes for pocketing judicial funds amounting to P412,861.

In a resolution promulgated on April 7, the anti-graft court’s Third Division said that Aurora Zuñiga, former clerk of court of the municipal trial court of Virac, failed to raise new arguments in her appeal that could warrant the reversal of the decision of the Virac Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 42.

In 2019, the Virac RTC sentenced Zuñiga to six to seven years in prison and disqualified her from holding public office.

Zuñiga was also ordered to pay a fine of P412,861.85, which is equivalent to the amount of public funds that she pocketed.

The anti-graft court said Zuñiga should also pay another P412,861.85 in civil liability to the Supreme Court (SC).

The case Against Zuñiga stemmed from a complaint filed by the SC Office of the Court Administrator with the Office of the Ombudsman in 2016.

Based on the charge sheet, Zuñiga failed to account for the money drawn from the Virac municipal trial court’s funds from 1988 to 2008.

The ombudsman said the accused failed to return the money despite demands by the Commission on Audit and the SC.

SANDIGANBAYAN

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