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Sandiganbayan junks another ill-gotten wealth case vs. Marcoses

Date posted - 08/10/2019
News
 / 09:35 AM October 08, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Marcoses scored another victory against the government after the Sandiganbayan dismissed a civil case filed by the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) for allegedly amassing ill-gotten wealth worth P1.052 billion.

The Second Division’s decision, dated September 25 but only obtained by the media on Tuesday, was hinged on the insufficiency of evidence to prove that Bienvenido Tantoco, acted as a dummy of former President Ferdinand Marcos in acquiring expensive assets.

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Tantoco and his other relatives were facing an expanded complaint for reconveyance, reversion, accounting, restitution, and damages after the PCGG said they acted as dummies for co-accused Marcos and his family.

The prosecution banked on the claims that the Tantocos acquired franchise to operate duty-free shops meant to conceal the ownership of the alleged illegally obtained assets.

“The plaintiff adds that the defendants managed to secure presidential approval for them to operate and manage exclusively duty-free shops and to pay only a minimum franchise tax of seven percent,” the court said, citing the prosecution’s claims.

However, the anti-graft court insisted that the documents and witnesses presented by the state prosecutors did not prove that there was conspiracy between the two families.

“Evidently, the plaintiff Republic failed to prove by preponderance of evidence that the defendants by themselves, or in conspiracy with defendants Marcoses, obtained ill-gotten wealth,” Sandiganbayan said.

This is the second forfeiture case against the Marcoses and their friends which was dismissed this year.  Earlier in August, the same division dismissed another P102 billion forfeiture case against Marcos’ kin and alleged cronies.  /muf



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