MANILA –The Sandiganbayan has again deferred the plunder and graft pre-trial proceeding of former Senator Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada pertaining to his alleged involvement in the misuse of the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF).
The pre-trial proceeding was supposed to be conducted on Monday, but the Sandiganbayan reset the same to April 17, 2017 to give both the defense and prosecution panels enough time to clear out issues in the pre-trial order.
Present during the pre-trial were Estrada and detained businesswoman Janet Lim Napoles.
Napoles is the alleged “brains” behind the PHP10-billion pork barrel and the PHP900-million Malampaya Fund scams.
During the plunder pre-trial proceeding, the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division gave both parties a period of until Friday (March 10, 2017) within which to submit a list of exhibits and descriptions which are stipulated as faithful reproduction of the original documents.
This was aimed at seeing if there were discrepancies in the list of evidence prepared by both parties.
Likewise, the defense panel also moved that the list of evidence be placed under a reference list in the pre-trial order to minimize the number of pages Estrada has to sign.
On the other hand, the graft pre-trial was also rescheduled to April 17, 2017 as some of the accused have not yet finalized the pre-trial list of exhibits.
Estrada is facing plunder and 11 counts of graft for allegedly pocketing PHP183.793 million worth of “kickbacks” by allocating his PDAF or pork barrel to fake non-government organizations (NGOs) allegedly owned by Napoles.
He is currently detained at the Philippine National Police (PNP) Custodial Center in Camp Crame, Quezon City, while Napoles is detained at the Correctional Institution for Women in Mandaluyong City.