John Hay firm cries harassment in estafa case
BAGUIO CITY—The estafa case filed against businessman Robert John Sobrepeña was an example of “selective justice” and may disrupt an arbitration undergone by the developer and regulator of Camp John Hay, an official of Camp John Hay Development Corp. (CJHDevco) said.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) this week filed a P1.15-billion estafa case against Sobrepeña, CJHDevco chair, for securing a restructured lease agreement in 2000 as it converted the former American rest and recreation center into a tourist-oriented commercial hub.
Alfredo Yñiguez III, CJHDevco executive vice president and chief operating officer, however, said this was “flimsy” litigation because “the man then in charge at the BCDA (Bases Conversion and Development Authority) endorsed the deferment.”
“The BCDA, which was headed at that time by chair and president Rogelio Singson, cited the reasons [for] the restructuring. In fact, there was a board resolution from the BCDA that outlined the reasons for their restructuring,” Yñiguez said in a statement on Thursday.
“This all happened around 14 years ago, and they are raising the issues only now? What’s their agenda? Is it political? Personal vendetta against the Sobrepeñas?” he said.
The estafa case, which was filed by BCDA president Arnel Paciano Casanova two years ago, originally implicated 15 directors and officers of CJHDevco but the DOJ absolved all the firm’s officials “and moved to indict only Sobrepeña,” Yñiguez said. Vincent Cabreza, Inquirer Northern Luzon
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