DFA asks Sen. Estrada to comment on request to cancel his passport
MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has asked Senator Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada to comment within five days on the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) request to cancel his passport pending investigation into the P10-billion “pork barrel” scam.
Estrada was among those facing plunder case at the Office of the Ombudsman for allegedly funneling his Priority Development Assistance Fund or “pork barrel” funds to fake non-government organizations.
In an interview on Tuesday, the senator said a letter from the DFA asking him to comment on the DOJ’s request was sent to his residence Monday.
He said he has yet to meet with his lawyers to discuss the matter.
The DOJ requested the DFA last week to cancel the passports of Estrada, Senators Juan Ponce-Enrile and Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. and others charged with plunder in connection with the pork barrel fund scam.
Despite this, Estrada disclosed that he would leave for the United States this week to get a second opinion on the medical condition of his wife.
Until now, however, Estrada said, they have no exact date yet of their departure.
Unlike Estrada, Revilla has yet to receive the same letter from the DFA, his lawyer said in a phone interview.
Joel Bodegon, Revilla’s lawyer, said he had checked with the senator’s office and was told that it has not yet received the same letter from the DFA.
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