Latest Stories

Court of Appeals affirms extradition to HK of ex-BSP official


File photo

MANILA, Philippines–The Court of Appeals has dismissed an appeal by a former official of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas not to have him extradited to Hong Kong to face a criminal suit filed there against him.

In a 7-page amended decision issued on Friday, the court’s sixth division through Associate Justice Hakim Abdulwahid said that it found probable cause for the extradition of Juan Antonio Muñoz based on the documents submitted by the Hong Kong government.

Muñoz, former head of the BSP’s Treasury Department, is facing a criminal suit in Hong Kong for allegedly receiving illegal payments while doing business with Moccatta Hong Kong, a subsidiary of the Standard Chartered Bank, in behalf of the BSP, then known as Central Bank of the Philippines. The suit, filed in 1994, sought the extradition of Muñoz.

Muñoz, who had gone back to the Philippines, went to a Manila court and asked it to deny the extradition request, arguing that the RP-HK Extradition Treaty no longer exists after Hong Kong became a special administrative region of China on July 1, 1997.

He further argued that his extradition would mean the Philippines would turn him to a third State-China which is not part of the RP-HK agreement.

In 2006, the Manila court ruled for Muñoz’ extradition, saying the documents submitted by the Hong Kong government were in compliance with the requirements of the RP-Hong Kong Extradition Treaty.

The lower court added that it had no jurisdiction on Muñoz’ defenses because its authority was limited to determining whether the extradition request complied with the extradition treaty and whether the person sought was extraditable.

Muñoz filed an appeal before the Court of Appeals, citing the same arguments. In 2012, the appeals court upheld the lower court’s ruling, explaining that even if Hong Kong had become part of China, it is “still empowered to enter into international agreements including extradition treaties in its own name.”

“It is thus misplaced for (Muñoz) to claim interruption in the affectivity of the treaty and expect further state action from either Hong Kong or China beyond the explicit pronouncements,” the appeals court said.

“Clearly, it would be most unfair to prevent (Hong Kong) from resorting to the extradition of (Muñoz) on the imagined lack of reciprocity,’’ the appeals court added.

Muñoz again filed an appeal. And again, the Court of Appeals dismissed Muñoz bid against extradition to Hong Kong in a decision promulgated on March 1, 2013, but released only on Friday.

The appeals court, however, granted the dropping of the charge of accepting an advantage as an agent on the extradition request for non-compliance with the double criminality rule. Double criminality rule means that the criminal charge the accused is facing at the requesting country (Hong Kong) has to have an equivalent offense in the second country, in this case Philippines.

The court said that the extradition will still push through because Muñoz is still facing a case for conspiracy to defraud which is equivalent to swindling (estafa) and violation of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft Law in the Philippines.

The case of Muñoz prompted the BSP to improve its internal controls and its reporting and monitoring systems to prevent direct dealings as those done by Muñoz.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Court of Appeals , Extradition , Hong Kong , Juan Antonio Muñoz , News

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  2. Opinions split on Napoles turning state witness
  3. Delfin Lee: Blame Pag-Ibig, not me
  4. Plunder complaint filed vs PNP chief, firearms office head over license delivery deal
  5. Cedric Lee’s cohort flies out of PH despite look-out order – De Lima
  6. San Juan cops fail to arrest Cedric Lee
  7. More ‘Yolanda’ bodies found
  8. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  9. Lawyer: Napoles ‘will tell all’
  10. Boy ‘sexually assaulted’ at Indonesia international school
  1. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  2. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  3. Estrada: Gigi Reyes won’t testify vs JPE
  4. Bernice Lee arrested by NBI team
  5. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Suspect in Vhong Navarro’s mauling wants to turn state witness – De Lima
  8. Reckless driver endangered lives of Aquino, entourage–report
  9. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  10. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  8. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  9. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
  10. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima


  • PNP chief on plunder raps: ‘Amateurish’
  • Makati readies 12-month traffic plan for Skyway 3
  • Heard on Radyo Inquirer 990AM
  • Did you know
  • HK apology: Why Estrada and not Aquino?
  • Sports

  • Mixers trim Aces, force do-or-die tiff
  • Donaire junks Garcia as coach, taps father
  • ’Bye Ginebra: No heavy heart this time
  • UAAP board tackles new rules
  • Baguio climb to decide Le Tour de Filipinas
  • Lifestyle

  • Entering the monkhood a rite of passage
  • Haneda International Airport: A destination on its own
  • Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  • Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  • Life lessons I want to teach my son
  • Entertainment

  • Return of ‘Ibong Adarna’
  • Practical Phytos plans his future
  • In love … with acting
  • From prison to the peak of success
  • ‘Asedillo’ location thrives
  • Business

  • PH banks not ready for Asean integration
  • Stocks down on profit-taking
  • Banks allowed to use ‘cloud’
  • SMIC to issue P15-B bonds
  • Honda upgrades PH plant
  • Technology

  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Viber releases new design for iPhone, comes to Blackberry 10 for the first time
  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Bam Aquino becomes Master Splinter’s son after Wiki hack
  • Mark Caguioa lambasts Ginebra teammates on Twitter
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 24, 2014
  • Talking to Janet
  • Respite
  • Bucket list
  • JPII in 1981: walking a tightrope
  • Global Nation

  • 19 Ukrainians, Russians, Filipinas rescued in bar raid
  • Filipinos coming home from Mideast must obtain MERS clearance – DOH
  • US Secret Service in Manila ahead of Obama visit
  • Palace thanks Estrada for successful HK mission
  • Hong Kong accepts PH apology; sanctions also lifted
  • Marketplace