Ex-LTO chief Virgie Torres dies after a heart attack
BAGUIO CITY–Former Land Transportation Office (LTO) chief Virginia “Virgie” Torres, one of President Aquino’s controversial friends, died at a Pampanga hospital on Saturday following a heart attack.
Torres, 63, died at 2 a.m. at The Medical City Clark in the Clark Freeport, where she was taken after complaining of dizziness and chest pain on Dec. 31.
Aquino had been spending the holidays at the presidential Mansion in Baguio City since New Year’s Eve when news about Torres’ death reached him.
Family members said Torres was in good spirits during the Christmas week. They organized a two-day wake at Torres’ home at the Baltazar subdivision in Paniqui town in Tarlac province before she would be transferred to her hometown of La Paz, also in Tarlac.
Torres’ friendship with Mr. Aquino had been considered the “Achilles heel” of the President who espoused “Daang Matuwid (the Straight and Narrow Path).”
She had been linked to irregularities when she served as LTO chief but had not been prosecuted until her retirement in October 2013.
Torres, however, left the agency on the heels of an Internet video scandal involving a footage of her playing a slot machine in a casino. A Malacañang memorandum circular prohibits government personnel from entering and playing at gaming establishments.
In August last year, Torres was again in the spotlight when she allegedly tried to coerce Bureau of Customs officials into releasing P100 million worth of seized sugar from Thailand.
Torres said she had put up a sugar enterprise since her retirement from the LTO. Reports from Tonette Orejas and Jo Martinez-Clemente, Inquirer Central Luzon
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