Court finds LPG representative in House guilty of underfilling gas cylinders | Inquirer News
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Court finds LPG representative in House guilty of underfilling gas cylinders

By: - Reporter / @MRamosINQ
/ 01:18 AM October 10, 2016
arnel-ty

LPGMA party-list Rep. Arnel Ty. Photo from www.congress.gov.ph

A Malabon City Regional Trial Court (RTC) has ordered a party-list representative to pay a P50,000 fine for his company’s unlawful refilling of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders owned by the big oil companies.

LPG Marketers Association (LPGMA) Rep. Arnel Ty was also sentenced to “subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency” after he was found guilty of violating Batas Pambansa Blg. 33, the Marcos-era edict on petroleum trading.

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The case stemmed from a complaint filed jointly in February 2004 with the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) by cooking gas retailers who accused Ty’s company, Republic Gas Corp. (Regasco), of “underfilling” and unauthorized refilling of Shellane, Petron Gasul and Totalgaz cylinders.

In a 16-page ruling, Judge Ofelia Contreras Soriano of Malabon RTC Branch 55 said Ty could not feign innocence when he claimed he was unaware that Regasco was illegally refilling LPG tanks of other oil firms as he did not oversee its operations as company president.

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Ty argued that it was the plant manager who was tasked with supervising Regasco’s daily operations, including the refilling of LPG cylinders.

Soriano, however, pointed out that the law “makes the president responsible for the transgressions of the corporation” since his specific role is to manage and oversee its business affairs.

“(D)espite his denial, (Ty) cannot escape liability for the infraction because the bylaws of the corporation itself expressly provide that as president, he shall manage and supervise the (company),” read Soriano’s Sept. 8 ruling, a copy of which was released by the Department of Justice.

In handing down a guilty verdict, the judge said Ty should be held criminally liable “precisely because he was the one authorized under the bylaws to manage and supervise” Regasco.

“From the testimony given by the accused, it is very apparent that… he deliberately skipped the portion which delves on his duty supervising and managing the business affairs of the corporation,” Soriano said.

The Supreme Court had earlier approved Ty’s indictment when it junked his petition to void the criminal case filed by the NBI, which conducted a raid on the lawmaker’s warehouse in Malabon.

In addition, Soriano forfeited in favor of the government more than 400 LPG cylinders recovered by NBI agents from Ty’s warehouse and cancelled Regasco’s license to operate.

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