The Philippines: SC junks PHP51bn PCGG suit vs Marcos, cronies

  • The Supreme Court (SC) has rejected the bid of the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) to recover PHP51bn from the estates of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos, his wife Imelda and his cronies that they allegedly acquired through behest loans.
  • The SC’s First Division dismissed the petition of PCGG seeking reversal of the Aug 10 ruling of the Sandiganbayan that junked its civil suit.
  • The SC instead affirmed the anti-graft court’s ruling, which dismissed the complaint for reconveyance, reversion, restitution and damages against the Marcoses and other respondents, including former construction magnate Rodolfo Cuenca and former trade minister Roberto Ongpin.
  • The high court agreed with the finding of the Sandiganbayan of insufficiency of evidence presented by the PCGG, which is tasked to run after the ill-gotten wealth of the dictator and his cronies.
  • The SC also ruled that the anti-graft court was correct when it excluded a part of the documentary evidence presented by the PCGG during the hearing of the case that were mere photocopies of original documents.
  • The PCGG has alleged that CDCP was able to obtain “favored” contracts worth billions of pesos from the National Irrigation Administration, Philippine Associated Smelting and Refining Corp., Light Rail Transit project, Philippine Phosphate Fertilizer Corp. and the Department of Public Works (now Department of Public Works and Highways) during that time.
  • The PCGG alleged that the respondents were able to secure loans for CDCP and other financial assistance from the government despite lack of sufficient collateral.
  • PCGG is facing imminent abolition through pending bills in Congress.

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