Court rejects Jinggoy, Napoles’ bid to reverse denied bail
THE Sandiganbayan has denied the appeal of detained Senator Jinggoy Estrada and accused mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles to reverse the court’s denial of their bail in the plunder case.
In its resolution, the anti-graft court’s Fifth Division said it did not find any evidence that would reverse its earlier resolution denying the bail plea of Estrada and Napoles.
“There is nothing in said motions which would warrant the reconsideration or reversal of the questioned resolution dated January 7, 2016 that has not been exhaustively discussed and deliberated upon,” the court said.
The court added that it has “scrutinized every detail of the evidence” and that “there is no need to impose on it again the same duty premised on the same arguments.”
Division chair Associate Justice Roland Jurado said in his separate opinion that the denial of bail is not a “judgement” on the “final outcome of the case.”
The court denied Estrada’s appeal even though the detained senator cited the Supreme Court’s decision allowing Senator Juan Ponce Enrile to post bail in his plunder case due to humanitarian considerations.
In denying Estrada’s bail, the court earlier said it found evident guilt with Estrada’s alleged use of conduits according to the bank inquiry report by the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC).
The court noted the AMLC’s findings that Estrada’s handwriting in the bank checks was similar to that of businessman Juan Ng, whose bank account allegedly holds millions of kickbacks from Napoles. The court said Estrada and Ng could possibly be one and the same.
Estrada’s alleged use of conduits is reminiscent of the Jose Velarde account, which was supposedly owned by Jinggoy’s father former President Joseph Estrada to stow away jueteng kickbacks. Joseph Estrada was later convicted but pardoned for the crime of plunder over jueteng kickbacks during his short-lived term as president.
Estrada is accused of receiving P183 million kickbacks from Napoles, the alleged mastermind of the pork barrel scam. He is detained at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center with co-accused Sen. Ramon Revilla Jr.
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