Sandigan junks graft charges vs Singson-A A +A
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
THE anti-graft court dismissed Wednesday the graft charges against former Ilocos Sur governor Luis "Chavit" Singson in connection with the alleged questionable use of more than P20-million in public funds in 2001.
In the decision signed by Sandiganbayan Presiding Justice and third division chairperson Amparo Cabotaje Tang, and Justices Samuel Martires and Alex Quiros, the court granted Singson's motion to quash due to the slow action by the Office of the Ombudsman.
"The period of nine years is an unusually long period of time for the Office of the Ombudsman to study the complaint and commence with the preliminary investigation," the decision stated.
The court said the Ombudsman violated the defendant's right to due process.
Singson and his former vice governor, Deogracias Victor Savellano, were charged with three counts of graft for releasing P26.05-million in financial assistance to Multi-Line Food Processing International Inc. (MFPIII) in 2001.
The Ombudsman said MFPII was not qualified to receive financial aid from the government, as it is "a private corporation organized for profit and not intended to advance the interest of a specific cause or sector."
Last June, Savellano was also acquitted by the anti-graft court, citing "unreasonable delay." (Sunnex)