Dayan testifies giving money to De Lima from Espinosa
Ronnie Dayan, the alleged bagman of Senator Leila de Lima, on Thursday testified that his former lover and boss De Lima received money from alleged drug lord Kerwin Espinosa in 2014.
Dayan attended the reopening of the justice committee hearing at the House of Representatives. He read his affidavit which contained his testimony that De Lima received drug money from Espinosa.
Dayan did not give the amount which he delivered in 2014. Espinosa, who testified before the Senate, said he gave P8 million to De Lima in 2015.
“Meron po akong natanggap na pera mula kay Kerwin Espinosa para kay Secretary De Lima. Mga five times po. Ang perang inaabot sa akin, nasa paper bag na maliit, hindi ko na po binibilang at hindi na rin sinasabi ni Kerwin kung magkano yun,” Dayan told the lawmakers.
(I received money from Kerwin Espinosa intended for Secretary De Lima. At least five times. The pera handed out to me was placed in a small paper bag. I didn’t count the cash and Kerwin didn’t tell me its amount.)
Dayan said it was Kerwin himself who handed him the money, and that he only touched the money but not counted it.
“Basta, ‘eto na yung para kay Ma’am.’ Siya mismo ang nag-aabot sa akin, kinukuha ko, nilalagay ko sa harap ng upuan ng sasakyan. Hindi ko po alam kung magkano yung laman nung binibigay sakin na paper bag kasi hindi ko lang po sinisilip, sinasalat ko po,” Dayan said.
(‘This is the cash for ma’am.’ Kerwin was the one who handed the money to me, which I get and place on the front seat. I just don’t know how much was the cash inside the paper bag because I didn’t peek inside, I just touch it.)
Lawmakers laughed at Dayan’s term “sinalat ko lang (I just touched it).”
Dayan said he delivered the money in the following months – one time in Aug. 2014, another in October 2014, and three times in Nov 2014.
Dayan said the last time he delivered the money from Espinosa was in Nov. 2014 in Baguio City.
Dayan said Espinosa on Nov. 19, 2014 handed him the money at Alexandria Residence where Espinosa had checked in for the night.
Dayan met with Espinosa and De Lima on Nov. 22, 2014.
Dayan said he met Espinosa the first four times at SM Mall of Asia, and the last one in Baguio City.
Dayan then met De Lima at the latter’s house to deliver the money.
“Itine-text na lang ako o sinasabihan ako ni Ma’am, ‘punta ka sa ganito, magkikita kayo ulit ni ano…’ ganun. Mag-isa lang po ako kapag mini-meet ko po si Kerwin. Si Kerwin po mismo ang nag-aabot nung pera. At inaabot ko ang mga ito kay Ma’am pagdating sa bahay sa mismong kuwarto,” Dayan said.
(Ma’am will just text to tell me ‘Go to this place, you will meet with this person.’ I just go alone to meet with Kerwin. It was Kerwin himself who hands me the money. And I hand the same over to ma’am when she gets home, inside her room.)
“Automatic na po yan, kasi pag mga ganung… parang masasabi natin na sikreto, hindi ko po inaakyat sa office niya. Sa bahay na lang,” he added.
(That’s automatic. In those instances, I don’t hand the cash in her office to keep it secret. I just give it in her home.)
Dayan said he received from De Lima P25,000 to P30,000.
Dayan testified at Thursday’s hearing a day after Espinosa testified at the Senate which conducted an inquiry into the killing of the latter’s father, Albuera mayor Rolando Espinosa.
Dayan was arrested in La Union 11:30 a.m. Tuesday after he was cited in contempt for snubbing the House of Representatives inquiry on the proliferation of drugs at the New Bilibid Prison implicating De Lima.
During the turn-over by the police to the House of Representatives Tuesday night, Dayan admitted receiving drug kickbacks from Espinosa for De Lima, an allegation De Lima said was a lie.
Bilibid inmates who testified in the House inquiry tagged Dayan as the one who allegedly collected millions of kickbacks for De Lima from the drug trade for her senatorial campaign.
De Lima has vehemently denied the allegation, pointing out that allies of President Duterte have an ax to grind against her since she has crossed swords with Duterte. De Lima, as human rights chair, investigated the alleged links of Duterte to the Davao Death Squad when the latter was mayor.
De Lima has admitted having an affair with Dayan but said both of them were separated from their marriages at the time. De Lima has also expressed fear Dayan might be forced to testify against her. CDG/rga