Sandiganbayan allows Arroyo hospital arrest-A A +A
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
MANILA (2nd Update, 2:22 p.m.) -- Former President and now Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo was allowed by the Sandiganbayan First Division on Wednesday to be placed under hospital arrest in relation to the plunder charges filed against her.
"In view of the physical condition of the accused-movant and her need to undergo continuing intensive physical therapy three times a week at VMMC (Veterans Memorial Medical Center), and for humanitarian considerations, and on account of the withdrawal by the prosecution of its opposition to the said urgent motion, the court grants her urgent motion for hospital arrest at the VMMC," the court said.
However, the court said Arroyo's visitors will be under the control and supervision of the security provided by the Philippine National Police (PNP).
The use of telecommunication inside the VMMC, including the internet and mobile phones, shall also be under the authority of the PNP.
Media interviews are also prohibited without a court order.
The Sandiganbayan also said that all confinement and medication expenses shall be shouldered by the former President.
Arroyo is set to be arraigned on October 29.
The former President, along with nine others, was charged with plunder in connection to the alleged misuse of P366-million in intelligence funds of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO).
The court also deferred ruling on the request of Arroyo to undergo examination at the Philippine Heart Center.
"The Court will act on the accused-movant's motion to be allowed to undergo medical examination at the Philippine Heart Center as soon as the details of such examination, i.e.., the date and for how long, are made known to the Court," it said.
Last week, VMMC doctors said Arroyo showed signs of coronary ischemia. She was told to undergo a stress echo test at the Philippine Heart Center or any hospital that offers the test.
Meanwhile, former PCSO Chairman Sergio Valencia and PCSO Assistant Manager for Finance Benigno Aguas who entered a not guilty plea earlier this week will continue to be detained at PNP Custodial Center in Camp Crame, Quezon City. (Kathrina Alvarez/Sunnex)