PCGG loses bid to reverse dismissal of forfeiture case vs Marcoses, cronies
MANILA, Philippines – The Sandiganbayan has junked the Presidential Commission on Good Governance (PCGG) bid to overturn the dismissal of an ill-gotten wealth case against the family and cronies of former President Ferdinand Marcos.
In the resolution dated last November 20, the Second Division which handled the civil case said that PCGG’s motion for reconsideration only contained rehashed claims that were already discussed in the legal proceedings.
“The instant motion is denied for lack of merit. The Supreme Court has repeatedly held in a long line of cases that a motion for reconsideration should be denied when the same only rehashes issues previously put forward,” the resolution penned by Associate Justice Michael Frederick Musngi said.
“In this case, no new argument was presented by plaintiff Republic of the Philippines in the instant motion,” he added.
The civil case aimed to recover P1.052 billion of alleged ill-gotten wealth, but the anti-graft court said in its decision last September 25 that the Marcos and his wife former first lady Imelda Marcos, and businesspeople Bienvenido Tantoco Sr. and Gliceria Tantoco are not liable for the missing funds.
The prosecution was chided for only presenting four witnesses and eleven documents — as the other evidence was not allowed to be used in court as they were either mere photocopies or were not presented in the discovery proceedings.
“The arguments raised therein have already been judiciously passed upon and properly considered by the Court in the assailed Decision, which states that the documentary and testimonial evidence presented by the plaintiff is insufficient to prove the allegations in the Expanded Complaint,” the court said.
The Tantocos also faced complaints for reconveyance, reversion, accounting, restitution, and damages for supposedly acquiring a franchise to operate duty-free shops — which were meant to conceal the ownership of the alleged illegally obtained assets.
But aside from the duty-free shops, other assets in question included business interests like Rustan International Marketing and Eagle Mining Corporation, and several properties in the Philippines, United States, and Europe.
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