Priests among Napoles’ regular visitorsBy Maricar Cinco |Inquirer Southern Luzon
SAN PEDRO, Laguna, Philippines—Janet Lim-Napoles, who is “doing fine” in detention at Fort Sto. Domingo in Sta. Rosa, Laguna province, has been getting visits not only from family members but also from two priests, the Philippine National Police said on Thursday.
The PNP said Napoles, who along with 37 others was recently charged with plunder over the P10-billion pork barrel scam, continued to receive visitors, usually her husband, Jaime, a few relatives and lawyers.
Among her regular guests, too, were Catholic priests Jay Philip Hernandez Ramos and Frederick Alintar, said the PNP spokesperson, Senior Supt. Reuben Theodore Sindac.
Almost every day since Napoles was transferred on Sept. 1 to the Special Action Force training camp in Sta. Rosa City, the PNP had kept the public abreast of Napoles’ health, list of visitors and the meals served to her until Sept. 10.
“Sayang lang sa (It was just a waste of cell phone) load. Nobody seemed interested anyway, as everyone’s attention appeared focused now on Zamboanga,” said Sindac, when asked by phone on Thursday why the public updates had stopped.
But he was quick to point out that the PNP was continuously monitoring Napoles’ condition through the six closed-circuit television cameras installed in her detention cell.
The footage, however, is “not for public consumption,” Sindac said.
On Wednesday, the two priests, along with a Napoles cousin, Aiza Macapatag, paid her a visit. They also visited her a day before that and on Sept. 9 and 10, according to PNP reports.
Sindac did not provide additional information about the two priests but on its Sept. 10 post on its Facebook account, the PNP wrote that Ramos was from Antipolo City.
“They’re doing what priests normally do. Maybe counseling or praying for her. I really wouldn’t know because I wasn’t there,” Sindac said.
The Napoles family is known to have close ties with some members of the Catholic Church, who, according to whistle-blowers, received money and gifts from Napoles.
Sindac said a security plan was in place should Napoles’ arraignment for the serious illegal detention case filed against her by whistle-blower Benhur Luy push through on Sept. 23.
He also said that the PNP was “ready” to provide her security should the court require Napoles’ presence at the Makati Regional Trial Court or decide to hold proceedings in Laguna.
“It’s the same (security) plan” set up for the arraignment that was originally scheduled for Sept. 9, Sindac said.
First posted 6:31 pm | Friday, September 20th, 2013