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article imagePhl anti-graft court to issue arrest warrants for 3 senators

By Leo Reyes     Jun 19, 2014 in Crime
At least three of the 24 elected Philippine senators could be arrested in the next few days to face trial for the non-bailable crime of plunder.
The Sandiganbayan (Phl Anti-graft Court) could issue the warrant of arrest for Senator Ramon "Bong" Revilla, Jr. as early a today (Thursday in Phl) after the graft court found probable cause on the charges of the non-bailable crime of plunder and other graft charges against the senator.
Senator Revilla has disclosed his plan to surrender today (Thursday) knowing that the arrest warrant is being readied for possible issuance today. reported Thursday, quoting a court resolution issued by the anti graft court saying, “After personally perusing the information and evaluating the joint resolution of the Office of the Ombudsman, the evidence in support thereof and the records of the preliminary investigation attached thereto, it appears that sufficient grounds exist for the finding of probable cause for the purpose of issuing a warrant of arrest against the accused charged in the instant cases,” the resolution read.
“Wherefore, let warrants of arrest be issued against the accused in the cleaseases set forth across their respective names,” the resolution read.
Revilla has earlier sought relief from the anti-graft court including the deferment of the arrest warrant and a motion to dismiss the case but these were denied by the court, effec tively paving the issuance of the arrest warrant.
Revilla is charged with plunder and other graft cases along with Senators Juan Ponce Enrile and Jingoy Estrada. Arrest warrants for Enrile and Estrada could could be out in the next few days.
Other senators and members of the House of Representatives have also been named in the wide-ranging effort of the administration to stamp out corruption in the executive, judicial and legislative branches of the government.
Arrest and trials of these legislators are expected as soon as the anti-graft court finds probable cause on their individual cases.
The ombudsman claimed that the lawmakers have received kickbacks from government projects through Janet Napolis, the alleged pork barrel queen who was also charged with plunder along with the senators and other government officials.
Napolis has reportedly connived with the legislators to divert their pork barrel funds to private foundations and non-government organizations (NGO) and upon release of these funds to the concerned NGOs, these legislators reportedly get their share of the proceeds. Read more.
Meanwhile, IBC early evening TV news reported that the warrant of arrest for Senator Revilla has not yet been signed as of newscast time adding that it may be issued tomorrow (Friday local time).
More about Plunder, Arrest warrant, philippine senators, Graft and corruption
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