Prosecution seeks suspension of JV Ejercito over graft rap | Inquirer News

Prosecution seeks suspension of JV Ejercito over graft rap

/ 02:33 PM July 22, 2016

Sen. Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito


State prosecutors filed a motion seeking to preventively suspend Senator Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito from his Senate duties as he faces a graft charge before the Sandiganbayan over the anomalous purchase of firearms using calamity funds.

In its motion, the Office of the Special Prosecutor asked the Sandiganbayan to suspend Ejercito and his co-accused city administrator Ranulfo Dacalos, treasurer Rosalinda Marasigan, attorney Romualdo delos Santos, budget officer Lorenza Ching and engineer Danilo Mercado.


The prosecution cited Section 13 of Republic Act 3019 which provides that public officials charged with a valid information of graft will be preventively suspended from office and will lose his or her benefits at the time of his or her suspension.


READ: JV Ejercito pleads not guilty to graft, vows to clear name

“With the arraignment of all of the accused on April 18, 2016, the validity of the information filed against them is no longer in question. Suspension must follow as a matter of course,” the prosecutors said in their motion.

Ejercito was charged with graft over the anomalous purchase of high-powered rifles worth P2.1 million using calamity funds when he was San Juan mayor in 2008.

According to the information, Ejercito conspired with other city officials to purchase high-powered firearms in February 2008 using the city’s calamity fund as “investment for disaster preparedness.”

The city council then passed a city ordinance allowing Ejercito to buy the firearms for the city’s police department.

Ejercito approved the purchase although the city was not under a state of calamity when the purchase was made.


The firearms bought using the city’s calamity fund include three units of model K2 cal. 5.56mm sub-machine guns and 17 units of Daewoo model K1 cal. 5.56 mm sub-machine guns.

The purchase of the firearms was done with haste without “competitive bidding and without any post-qualification, bolstered by bid documents bearing dates earlier than the publication of the invitation to bid, showing that an unwarranted benefit, advantage and preference was accorded to the supplier,” the prosecutors said.

The Ombudsman cited the joint circular between the Departments of Budget and Management as well as of Interior and Local Government which did not include high-powered firearms among the items needed for disaster relief and mitigation.
Ejercito will serve as senator until 2019.

In the Sixth Division, Ejercito was also charged with technical malversation with San Juan Vice Mayor Francis Zamora over the anomalous purchase of the firearms.

READ: JV Ejercito pleads not guilty to technical malversation charge

The antigraft court Fifth Division is also hearing the plunder case Ejercito’s half-brother Sen. Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada, who is detained at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center over his alleged involvement in the pork barrel scam.

Jinggoy is Loi Ejercito’s son, while JV is Guia Gomez’s son, with former President Joseph Estrada.

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In 2007, now Manila Mayor Estrada was convicted of plunder by the Sandiganbayan on jueteng kickbacks. He was later pardoned by then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. RAM

TAGS: Firearms, Graft, San Juan, Sandiganbayan

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