Jinggoy Estrada calls plunder case acquittal a 'vindication' of name

Jinggoy Estrada says plunder case acquittal ‘a vindication of my name’

/ 09:57 AM January 19, 2024

Senator Jinggoy Estrada says the decision of the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division acquitting him of plunder in connection with the pork barrel scam case is a vindication of his name.

Senator Jinggoy Estrada listens as the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division announces its ruling on the plunder charge against him and businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles in connection with the infamous pork barrel scam at the Sandiganbayan in Quezon City on Friday, January 19, 2024 | PHOTO: Office of Sen. Estrada

MANILA, Philippines — Senator Jinggoy Estrada said the decision of the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division acquitting him of plunder in connection with the pork barrel scam case is a vindication of his name.

“I am emerging victorious at this point,” Estrada said in an ambush interview following the court promulgation on Friday.


The anti-graft court division cleared Estrada and businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles of plunder, but it convicted the senator of one count of direct bribery and two counts of indirect bribery.


READ: Jinggoy Estrada acquitted of plunder, convicted of bribery

The Sandiganbayan Fifth Division sentenced Estrada to a jail term of eight years to nine years and four months for direct bribery and two years to three years for each count of indirect bribery. It also penalized the senator with a special temporary disqualification from holding public office and perpetual absolute disqualification from exercising the right to suffrage.

It likewise asked Estrada to pay a P3 million fine, but since his bail and travel bonds were more than that amount, the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division would keep the money for now.

Estrada vowed to “exhaust all legal remedies” to appeal his direct and indirect bribery conviction.

“But as to the conviction of the direct and indirect bribery, I am not a lawyer; I have not read the decision, but I am so surprised since, based on the information sheet, there was no bribery, indirect or direct bribery, filed in the information sheet, it is only the case of plunder, and I have already been acquitted and exonerated of plunder and I will ask my lawyers to exhaust all legal remedies, all legal options available for me,” he said.

READ: Jinggoy Estrada to remain senator until Sandigan ruling is final – Zubiri


Estrada said he is “very, very thankful” despite the lengthy resolution of his case.

“I did not receive any money; that’s why I would like to thank the magistrates of the Sandiganbayan. After one decade, my case has already been resolved,” he said.

“It took almost 10 years, but still, I am very, very thankful,” he added.

READ: Sandiganbayan denies Jinggoy’s plea to dismiss plunder case

The plunder case against Estrada, Napoles, and others stemmed from the transfer of Estrada’s Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) or pork barrel to bogus non-government organizations (NGOs) owned by Napoles.

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The prosecution accused Estrada of accumulating ill-gotten wealth after allegedly gaining P55.79 million from the shady scheme aside from being “an active participant in the conspiracy to commit plunder.”

TAGS: Jinggoy Estrada, Plunder, pork barrel scam, Sandiganbayan

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