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PACQUIAO FIGHT FREELOADER

Sotto: Bato did no wrong

Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges chairperson Sen. Vicente Sotto II during the briefing on the complaint against Sen. Leila de Lima at the Senate, Pasay City. INQUIRER PHOTO/LYN RILLON

Senate Majority Leader Vicente “Tito” Sotto III. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/LYN RILLON

Citing the opinion of lawyers and a judge he had talked to, Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III said on Tuesday that Philippine National Police Director General Ronald dela Rosa could not have violated a Philippine law since he was abroad when he accepted an all-expense-paid trip to Las Vegas last week from Sen. Manny Pacquiao.

“The issue here is that it did not happen here but in Las Vegas,” Sotto told reporters, referring to the ongoing investigation by the Office of the Ombudsman of the police official’s possible breach of Republic Act no. 6713, or the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.

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Dela Rosa said on Monday that he was willing to go to jail for accepting the travel perks from Pacquiao whom he described as a friend.  The senator paid for the air tickets, accommodations and allowances of Dela Rosa and his family whom he invited to watch his boxing match with Jessie Vargas.

Sotto said he believed the Ombudsman has no jurisdiction over Dela Rosa because whatever offense the latter had committed happened outside the country.  He said that similarly, public officials like him are prohibited from playing in casinos here, but not abroad.

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“You did not violate a law in the Philippines,” he added of the case he cited.

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TAGS: Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees, Manny Pacquiao, Pacquiao-Vargas fight, Philippine news updates, Ronald dela Rosa, Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III
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