Court freezes 108 bank accounts of Pagadian mayor, wife

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The Court of Appeals (CA) has frozen an additional 141 bank accounts in connection with the P12-billion Aman Futures Group Phil. investment scam, which duped around 15,000 investors earlier this year.

Among those ordered frozen were 79 bank accounts belonging to Pagadian City Mayor Samuel Co and 29 to his wife, Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) deputy director Julia Bacay-Abad told the House committee on banks and financial intermediaries.

Abad said the AMLC has yet to determine how much was covered by the frozen bank accounts, which were included in the supplemental petition filed by the agency before the CA last Dec. 7.

Co, who is facing at least three syndicated estafa cases, skipped the committee hearing for the second time.

As authorities dig deeper into the extent of the investment scam, Deputy Director Virgilio Mendez of the National Bureau of Investigation told congressmen that at least three cooperatives and some parents-teachers’ associations had invested money in Aman Futures.

Cagayan de Oro Rep. Rufus Rodriguez assailed the Department of Justice (DOJ) for failing to file cases against Aman officials. He noted that it had been two months since the DOJ created a special panel of prosecutors to handle the complaints against Aman.

“It’s been two months,” he said. “Don’t tell me the DOJ is also sleeping on the job.”

This was, however, denied yesterday by the DOJ which said it expected to file a case in court against the Aman officials behind the scam before Christmas.

Prosecutor General Claro Arellano told reporters that some of the syndicated estafa complaints against Aman executives that are currently under preliminary investigation by a DOJ special panel of prosecutors would be submitted for resolution by Dec.17.

Another preliminary investigation hearing has been set on the Aman case on Dec.17 in Pagadian City, he said.

“We hope that before Christmas, we have a resolution and hopefully arrest warrants if we can file it in court,’’ Arellano said.

He said the panel had been working on these complaints that had been filed just three weeks ago.

Arellano also said they were evaluating whether they will refer the syndicated estafa complaint against the Pagadian City mayor to the Office of the Ombudsman for preliminary investigation.

“This is still being evaluated,’’ he said, acknowledging that this was because Co is a government official.

A syndicated estafa complaint has been filed against Co for his alleged involvement in the investment scam that had duped about 15,000 people.

Iloilo Rep. Arthur Defensor Jr. has raised the possibility of tightening existing laws to penalize “conspirators” in investment scams who were presenting themselves also as “victims.”

“How about the matter that the victims here are not really victims but conspirators?” he asked. “That in itself should be made an offense, if it is not yet covered by the Revised Penal Code.”

Special Prosecutor Edna Valenzuela, head of the special DOJ panel, replied: “Basically, the term ‘knowingly participating in a scheme,’ there’s already a law on that, that’s why there is a term ‘coconspirators.’”

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  • MonMayuga

    The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) should exhaust all available resources and leave no stone unturned in investigating the allegations against this Mayor Samuel Co of Pagadian City. If  the charges are found to be true, Co and his wife should never be allowed to see the light outside the prison walls again. All his possessions which would be found beyond their legal means to earn should be confiscated and returned to their victims.

  • joerizal

    Imbistigahan na rin nila yung pinakamalaking Ponzi scheme sa lahat…ang simbahan.

    • Barak_O

      bobo naman nito…

      • joerizal

        O patawa ka na naman hindi naman kalbo….buhay ka pa ba?

      • barok

        TROLL

      • joerizal

        Tawag ka ni Gundina…magsaing ka na raw!!!

    • andresa igbac

       kapal mo. gumamit ka pa ng name ng national hero. ano ba relihiyon mo? or may relihiyon ka ba? bat di yon ang pakialamanan mo kesa sa ibang relihiyon na obviously ay wala ka namang alam.

      • joerizal

        Bakit tinamaan ka ba? Masakit no? Saksak mo sa baga mo ang simbahan mong kurakot!!

      • Milesaway

        Bakit pati simbahan nasama dito… Are you giving tithes to the Church? if Yes, why you are complaining! giving tithes is voluntary…If No, better shut up since it’s not your tithe. Remember it belongs to the Lord. 

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_D3LDMMAKC6UDQLDVFP2DGSJBXY Jezzrel

        LOL LOL LOL.. The Lord don’t need money!!! A alam ko kung sino lord na tinutukoy mo, iyong pastor….LOL…

      • joerizal

        It does not belong to the Lord. Sige nga ipadala mo sa Diyos yung pera? Bakit may electronic transfer ba papuntang langit? Meron bang debit card ang “Lord? Baka Lord of the Rings oo. Yung mga pari lang ang naghahati-hati sa nakulimbat nila sa mga taong utu-uto na katulad mo!!

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IGLQQ2TTZF3BAWUHUWLFWVPZDE Vladymir

        It’s voluntary to some but to others it is mandatory and the money never reaches the lord’s hands (he has no need of the money anyway),it goes to the pockets of some enterprising crook along the way and it stayed there.You’re mind is really miles away.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/JJQWTLMZH3NNIE2IJ46AOZAXAE Hannah Blake

    sensationalize naman masyado ang news na to. 108 bank accounts? Baka mga time deposit renewal accounts mga yan throughout the years kaya umabot ng 108. Kasi everytime you renew your time deposit, another bank account na naman ang nasa entry ng bank.

    • andresa igbac

       wala naman yatang sensationalized sa balita. statement of presumed facts lang.

      • popeyee

        meron bang facts na presumed? 

    • nakawan

      that may be true, but your time deposit is renewed at best after 5 years. so assuming this guy renews a time deposit each year, that would mean he’s been doing this for at least 79 years :)

      • ed_nique

        if we presume that he had only 1 time deposit, then it really defies logic. but, the guy was a businessman before he became mayor. businessmen don’t want to tie up their money for a long time. it’s possible he made multiple short term (60, 120 or 180 days) placements over a period of time. and there’s another thing that the report did not mention, when were these accounts opened? what is their status … are they all active or some are dormant? how many are current/checking accounts? he is a businessman so it is very possible he has more than 1 current account.

        all we can do is speculate on why this couple have 108 accounts!

        hope PDI make a follow-up article on this

      • nakawan

        you’re absolutely right, he’s a businessman and he is entitled to multiple accounts. but even so, wouldn’t those accounts be held under the company name and not his? why are these accounts all under his and wife’s names? and 108?! why such a huge number of accounts?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_4R3GZTGML26TV2VGS6RVHP2THM Fred

    Wow! ganun karami bank accounts ng mag-asawa? Si mister ay 79 bank accounts at si misis ay 29. Hindi pa kasama dyan bank accounts ng kanilang dummy gaya ng kapatid o kabit!
    Makumpiska na sana. Buti nga sa inyo!

  • mon key

    if the chief justice was impeached because of a defective SALN, this mayor deserves jail time. including the wife.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/HBX5ADASRZU4SKUFDCRCFDMS44 el capitan

    wow magkanong pera ba meron ang bawat account tindi nyo mag nakaw

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/AH7MNEFRF4G4ZQ6PA2OE4Z3BEU Verlito

    The Mayor’s involvement in the scam is beyond reasonable doubt with such numbers of active bank accounts he possesses if indeed true. The banks should also be held accountable by not reporting such suspicious transactions to concerned government agencies. The DILG or appropriate government agency shall prosecute Co at once for wrongdoing as government officials and put him to jail as soon as possible. This is a classic example of graft and corrupt practices perpetrated by an incumbent government officials closely allied to the party in power.

    • nakawan

      Agreed. I mean, why else would the guy and his family be on the run after the collapse of Aman? He’s probably living it up in KL with his good buddy the CEO. Oh and btw, I wouldn’t be surprised if he still ran for office in 2013– and wins it by a landslide :)

  • tyopaeng

    Mayaman si mayor….

  • WeAry_Bat

    Hardworking si mayor…  Ibig sabihin sa 108 accounts, araw-araw nasa bangko siya para magwithdraw at deposit sa mga accounts. 

  • NoWorryBHappy

    May 108 banking accounts si Mayor Samuel Co at ang kanyang asawa ???
    KADAKO ! Talagang marami nga silang nadekwat na mga mamamayan ng Pagadian City.
    Bonnie and Clyde ng Pagadian City.

    • nakawan

      which is why they are now on the run from the villagers and their nooses :)

  • sam_aquino

    just how much is the salary of mayor Co that he own 79 bank accounts??? & his wife 29???  may trabaho din ba asawa nya??? 

    i smell something fishy here…  their SALN needs to be scrutinized…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_T42Q37DX5BRWJ5NRYTBC2DXUAU Jols – batman Robin

    DATUA MAYOR Oi… kawatan mn jud…….

  • Maldi2

    This is how the justice system is working in the Philippines.  Mag 2 months na wala pang nahuli, ni Warrant of Arrest walang na issue.  In contrast pag kalaban ka ni Simeon, it will take only a few hours after maisampa ang kaso, warrant of arrest agad!  WTF!

    • nakawan

      in fairness wala pang 2 months, pero matagal nga yung pag-issue ng pesteng warrant na yan. but the glaring issue here is why in the world does a Pagadian mayor need 79 bank accounts?

    • pabulaka

      Mabuti na ang hinay hinay kesa itapon ng korte ang kaso pag isinampa na dahil mahina ang nakuhang ebidensya.

      • tarikan

        Oo mag-ingat. Lalo na yang Court of Appeals na mahilig sa technicalities (interpreted in many ways).  

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/WTIRTIXLBR5X47RMVKB3T43SWA charles

    Jail Pagadian Mayor Samuel Co, his wife, and other conspirators in the Aman Futures scam..!!!..

  • barok

    Dapat managot din ang banko dahil parte sila sa krimen!

  • tarikan

    Kudos Court of Appeals. A worthwhile action in a looong time. Ganyan hindi puro RTO (quick to the draw) or technicalities.

  • speedstream2

    108 bank accounts? Why would anybody need that many bank accounts?

  • captainramius

    108 bank accounts for a small town mayor ?  Whats the total amount in there ?  This mayor is in deep trouble… Even if how rich you are but if your sources of income are legitimate the most maybe you maintain is about 5 or 10… making it 108 is ridiculous as this clearly is a sign you are trying to spread the amount you have in the bank to avoid the mandatory red flag on big accounts and deposits.

  • pubringjuandelacruz

    tinalo pa si Corona sa padamihan ng bank account! AMP!!!

  • xmb458

    Magnanakaw talaga ang animal na tsekwang ito eh. Hanep! Pati ang mga pinagpaguran ng mahihirap na kabbayan ng animal na magasawang ito e pinaginteresan pa….. hayop talaga pweh! 

  • indiosbravos2002

    Andaming bank account ni mayor ah. Tsssk… Tssssk… 1 year before election. Patay kang bata ka. Urong na sa Comelec

  • Bayan Panona

    Yan ang mayor samin! May ghost employees na, rumaraket pa sa scam! Mabuhay ka mayor! Kung mananalo ka uli!haha! Pustahan, ang papalit sa kanya eh kamag-anak ng Gov, Cong, at presidente ng mayors’ league ng Zambo Sur!

  • TotoyKalentong

    mahina ito, di-ginawang dollar accounts.

  • zeroko

    In major scums, a Chinese is involve. This is always the case in the Philippines. Chinese are involve in big time cheatings in and out of the government. That’s their strong character, cheating, lying, and stealing. 

  • spelster

    wow! 108 bank accounts?!?!?! bkit kelangan nila nang ganun kadami?! hhmm.. alam na…

  • $14334231

    tamang tama ang apelyido nitong si CO…kaya, sabi n’ya;    CO-CO-NIN ko lahat ng pera ng pinoy….pati pangalan…samuel….SAMUEL BILIBID….anong pangalan ng asawa…cora?..as in CORA-KOT din ako…..itong mag-asawang ito, palagay ko, ay parehong walang budhi……baka naman pag nakulong sila ay sa rest house sa loob ng bilibid ititira ng NBP bigwigs…….. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ZWTTKJTI57YO7TZBJC66GA2OLU dennis

    Pagadian should be downgraded no longer as a CITY but a small town! This maybe due to it´s place local income which was devastated by Aman Future Groups Phil Investment scam.They might probably can´t meet the required standard of local revenues as a CITY.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_HNUHU3P7R6FAG256UAXY27ST7I norwin tuano

      Taga pagadian ka? To comment like you do is just absolute stupidity…. 

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ZWTTKJTI57YO7TZBJC66GA2OLU dennis

        What are the requirements for a Cityhood in the Philippines? Eto,it must be 400 million Ave.Annual Income for 1st Class ha?…Eh 13 Billion ang nadale ng Aman Future Investment!…So,How can a City move by it´s own?…108 Mayor´s bank account was freeze and even too many “government officials” were involve?…HOW?

      • kerks

        Your argument seems to be misplaced. The requirement revenues for cityhood is in no way related to the scam. The 13 Billion you are saying is the estimated amount involved in the scam and this amount came from investments of private individuals. Where is the connection there of the city’s status to the amount duped from the 15,000 or so investors?

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