Latest Stories

15 boxes of pork evidence

Gigi Reyes’ letter to DA one of 2k pages of fiscal deals submitted to NBI


SMOKING GUN? NBI agents secure 15 boxes of evidence in the plunder case that is expected to be filed against several top officials and civilians tied to the P10-billion pork barrel scam. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

The smoking gun comes from government agencies.

On Wednesday afternoon, 15 boxes of evidence and more than 2,000 pages of financial transactions purportedly detailing the extent of a P10-billion racket involving state funds meant to ease rural poverty and ended in kickbacks over 10 years were submitted to the National Bureau of Investigation.

The evidence that could implicate the senators—principally endorsements of questionable nongovernment organizations (NGOs)—would come from official records, according to a source who is privy to the investigations.

“The smoking gun that could pin down the senators comes from government agencies where these letters were sent,” said the source who talked to the Inquirer on condition of anonymity.

The source showed the Inquirer a letter of Jessica Lucila “Gigi” Reyes, a lawyer who was chief of staff of then Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, dated Feb. 4, 2008, addressed to then Agriculture Secretary Arthur Yap informing him that Enrile had allotted P25 million of his PDAF to National AgriBusiness Corp. (Nabcor).

“The PDAF is for the implementation of various agribusiness, livelihood projects in different municipalities as per attached special allotment release order,” Reyes said in her letter.

“We wish to implement these projects through Nabcor as attached agency of DA (Department of Agriculture),” she said.

In the same letter, Reyes said that her deputy chief of staff, Jose Antonio Evangelista, was assigned the authority “to sign and follow up the project to ensure proper and timely implementation.”

Another document showed Evangelista’s letter to then Nabcor president Allan Javellana informing him that Enrile’s office was designating the People’s Organization Progress and Development Foundation (POPDF) as the implementing NGO for the project that would be financed with the Senate President’s pork barrel allocation.

The letter said the POFDF, an agency controlled by Napoles, was “a duly registered nongovernment organization” and should be “your conduit in the implementation of the said project.”

Evangelista added: “May we humbly request your good office to assist and facilitate the processing of the documents for the smooth implementation of the said projects at the soonest possible time?”

A stamp on the document showed that Nabcor received Evangelista’s letter on Feb. 11, 2008, and was paid on March 11, 2008.

A handwritten check number appears on the lower part of the letter.

The evidence came from 10 whistle-blowers—all former employees of businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles, the alleged brains behind the channeling of the congressional Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) and the government’s share in the Malampaya oil fields to ghost projects, according to their lawyer, Levito Baligod.

The papers will be used in the filing of plunder charges against Napoles and 13 other people, including three senators and “conduits,” in the Ombudsman later in the week. Another 40 people are likely to face malversation charges.

Another document dated March 23, 2012, showed that Enrile had confirmed in his letter to Carmela Perez, associate commissioner-special services sector of the Commission on Audit (COA), that he had authorized Reyes and Evangelista to sign documents in his behalf.

“We acknowledge receipt of your letter regarding the government-wide performance audit on PDAF projects,” Enrile said in his letter.

He said that his PDAF projects, which he had endorsed, were assigned to National Livelihood Development Corp., Department of Social Welfare and Development-National Capital Region, Nabcor and the Technology Resource Center.

“The set of letters was similar to those other senators and congressmen had written,” the source said. He said those letters were also sent to implementing agencies such as the DA, Department of Agrarian Reform and COA.

Under heavy guard, the 15 boxes of documents were unloaded and brought to the NBI special task force office.

Baligod confirmed to the Inquirer that all accused senators “received their kickbacks through personal delivery of cash.”

“No senator received a check or through a fund transfer,” he said.

Baligod said the evidence submitted by the whistle-blowers would ensure airtight cases against Napoles and her alleged cohorts.

“It took us some time to finish everything because we want to make sure that our evidence will stand judicial scrutiny,” Baligod said.

‘We have a solid case’

“We are not here just to ruin the reputation of anybody because for all of us, our reputation is the most precious thing that we have, more precious than the wealth that this world can offer. That’s why we are very careful once we accuse somebody that we have a solid case to stand on,” the lawyer added.

Baligod said the affidavit of six whistle-blowers covers only the PDAF and served as the first batch of affidavits.

“This case is only for the PDAF. Next will be on the Malampaya funds,”Baligod said.

He explained that the evidence submitted included a matrix of the financial transactions between Napoles’ foundations and the lawmakers from 2004 to 2010 based on the records of the principal whistle-blower, Benhur Luy.

Baligod said that the joint affidavits of the six whistle-blowers were supported by documents relating to fund transfers and letters to banks authorizing the debit of money from the accounts of foundations to the accounts of the legislators in some cases.

He said several congressmen named in the affidavits received kickbacks through checks and bank transactions.

In his letter to Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, transmitting the documentary evidence and the sworn affidavits of the whistle-blowers, Baligod expressed his appreciation and gratitude to her and President Aquino for their support “throughout the evidence-gathering phase of this investigation.”

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: Gigi Reyes , Janet Lim Napoles , Juan Ponce Enrile , National Bureau of Investigation , NGOs , pork barrel scam , Probe , Senate

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. US teacher fired over comment on black president
  2. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  3. Filipinos, Dane re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  4. Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  5. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Massive infra spending set
  8. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  9. Easter crucifixions draw huge crowds
  10. Korea ferry captain arrested, divers spot bodies
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. MH370 co-pilot made mid-flight phone call – report
  7. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  8. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  9. Massive infra spending set
  10. OFW brings MERS virus to Philippines
  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. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  5. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  6. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  7. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  8. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  9. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia


  • 2 killed in apparent Bahrain car bombing
  • SC suspends proctor in 2011 bar exams
  • At barricades, Ukraine insurgents await Easter
  • Solons seek ample protection for bank depositors
  • Tragedies at sea: The Sewol and the Costa Concordia
  • Sports

  • Tottenham beats Fulham 3-1 in Premier League
  • Martino defends Messi, takes blame for Barca fail
  • Vettel hoping for resurgence at Chinese GP
  • MLB pitcher donates $100,000 for Sewol ferry victims
  • Hamilton takes pole at Chinese Grand Prix
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • Fiat-Chrysler to produce iconic Jeep in China from 2015
  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • Cesar Chavez movie sparks memories of Fil-Am labor leaders
  • Filipinos in US poised for success
  • Visas for priests and other faith leaders
  • DOH to continue tracking co-passengers of OFW infected with MERS virus
  • 5 Filipinos with MERS in UAE reported in stable condition
  • Marketplace