MANILA — In order to speed-up the issuance of arrest warrants against alleged pork barrel scam mastermind, Janet Lim-Napoles and the three senators involved, the Ombudsman may already file charges against them before the Sandiganbayan, as early as today.
Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said this on Friday, after Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales junked Napoles’ motion for consideration (MR) for the plunder charges filed against her and her bid for immunity.
Morales said in a statement that Napoles failed to provide evidence that would prove her legibility to be given an immunity.
Following this denial of Napoles’ motion for reconsideration, De Lima said the next step should be the filing of the cases before the Sandiganbayan, which can be done anytime by the Office of the Ombudsman.
“Kasi after denial ng MR, ang next step diyan it can be anytime na. Pwedeng ngayon, isasampa na po ng Office of the Ombudsman ang mga criminal information sa Sandiganbayan,” De Lima said in an interview on GMA’s Unang Balita.
(Because the next step after the denial of the MR, could be done anytime. They can file (the case) as early as now. The Office of the Ombudsman will already file the criminal information before the Sandiganbayan.)
De Lima also said that Napoles’ affidavits will no longer be needed in the filing of the first batch of plunder cases because the requirements will only be based on the evidence gathered by the National Bureau of Investigation.
She also added that the justices are given 10 days to determine the propriety of issuing a warrant of arrest, based on the rules of the anti-graft court.
“Titingnan na din ho ‘yan ng Sandiganbayan ‘yung isyu ng probable cause. They agree kung may probable cause. If they do, susunod na ang issuance ng warrant of arrest,” she added.
(The Sandiganbayan will also look at the issue of a probable cause. They (will) agree if there is a probable cause. If they do, the issuance of arrest warrant will follow.)
Asked about one of Napoles’ lawyers statement that they will no longer be turning over document to support Napoles’ claims, De Lima said, she has yet to speak with Napoles’ camp.
With reports from GMA News