CA allows hearing of money laundering cases vs drug suspects
The Court of Appeals (CA) stand by its ruling allowing the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City and the Regional Trial Court of Malolos City, Bulacan to hear and resolve the money laundering cases against “shabu tiangge” operator Amin Imam Boratong, his wife Memie, and several others.
In a decision made public Wednesday, the appeals court denied the motions for reconsideration filed by the Boratongs on its Jan. 29, 2018 decision that reversed the rulings issued by the Pasig RTC on May 28, 2013 and by the Malolos RTC on Dec. 3, 2013 dismissing the money laundering cases.
In its Jan. 29 ruling, the appeals court stated that the lower courts violated the prosecutors’ right to due process when they prematurely dismissed the cases.
“The prosecutor has discretionary power to control the conduct of the presentation of the prosecution evidence, part of which is the option to choose what evidence to present or who to call as witness,” the appeals court said.
“Thus, by not giving the State the opportunity to present its evidence in court or to amend the informations, the said trial courts have effectively curtailed the State’s right to due process,” the appeals court added.
The appeals court added that the Boratongs also failed to present new arguments that would warrant the reversal of its decision.
“Substantially, the issues proffered by the private respondents were already addressed, sufficiently passed upon and resolved in the assailed decision. Hence, we find no cogent reason to warrant reconsideration or modification of our decision,” the CA Former Special Second Division said in a five-page resolution penned by Associate Justice Carmelita Salandanan Manahan.
Boratong is already detained at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) following his conviction for operating the “shabu tiangge” – or cystal meth bazaar – at his 2,000-square meter compound on F. Soriano Street in Barangay Santo Tomas in Pasig. /atm
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