Administration allies face graft charges

By , on June 2, 2015

Sen. Gregorio "Gringo" Honasan (Facebook photo)
Sen. Gregorio “Gringo” Honasan (Facebook photo)

MANILA — Sen. Gregorio Honasan II and seven other allies of the administration are facing graft and malversation charges in connection with the P10-billion pork barrel scam.

Two sources from the Department of Justice (DOJ) told the Philippine Daily Inquirer, in a report by Marlon Ramos, that the charges were filed against Honasan, Secretary Joel Villanueva, Rep. Rufus Rodriguez and five other lawmakers.

According to the unnamed sources, the National Bureau of Investigation had finalized its letter-complaint to the Office of the Ombudsman.

The bureau recommended the filing of graft and malversation charges for their alleged involvement in the illegal channeling of congressional Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) to ghost projects and bogus organizations masterminded by businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles.

Justice Undersecretary Jose Justiniano, meanwhile said that NBI’s recommendations have yet to be approved by Justice Secretary Leila de Lima.

Justiniano was assigned by the justice secreatary to spearhead the investigation on the pork barrel scam conducted by the NBI.

He said that they have revised the first complaint following allegations that the legislators’ signatures were fake.

“We have completed our task,” Justiniano told reporters.

“We revised the first letter-complaint in the light of the allegations of some of the legislators that their signatures were fake. We revised the complaint to address those issues,” he said.

“As what Secretary De Lima had said, we don’t look at the political (affiliation) of the lawmakers. If there’s evidence against them, we will file charges against them,” he added.