NBI building up cases vs other pork scam players
The National Bureau of Investigation has initiated a case buildup against certain personalities implicated in the P10-billion pork barrel scam who were not indicted during the previous Aquino administration, according to Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II.
The justice secretary said the documents submitted by former Manila Councilor Greco Belgica prompted the Department of Justice (DOJ) to revisit its investigation into the country’s biggest corruption scandal in recent history.
“There are many documents submitted to us. But the ones from Greco Belgica would already suffice. The NBI is now building up the cases,” Aguirre told reporters last week.
Belgica, a staunch supporter of President Rodrigo Duterte, had presented voluminous documents allegedly showing that some lawmakers allied with former President Benigno Aquino III should be held liable for the supposed fraudulent use of their Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), the official name of the congressional pork barrel.
Aguirre said the DOJ might also consider the contents of a sworn affidavit allegedly executed by suspected pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles that tagged opposition Senators Franklin Drilon and Antonio Trillanes IV.
“Napoles mentioned prominent personalities from the previous administration, including Drilon and Trillanes,” he said.
Drilon, then the Senate president, was previously dragged into the PDAF scam after photos showing him and his wife Mila attending a party hosted by Napoles spread in 2013.
He had repeatedly denied the allegations, saying he only met Napoles a few times in social gatherings and that he never had transactions with her.
Sen. Francis Escudero, who had become one of Mr. Duterte’s staunchest supporters in the Senate, had already filed a Senate resolution seeking to reopen the pork barrel fraud investigation.
Three former senators — Juan Ponce Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. — had been indicted and jailed over the massive fund scam, which Napoles purportedly controlled through her network of bogus foundations.
Enrile and Estrada have since been allowed to post bail while Revilla remains in detention at Camp Crame.
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