Ombud orders filing of charges vs ex-Tabuk mayor

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Thursday, June 19, 2014


THE Office of the Ombudsman on Thursday ordered the filing of criminal charges against a former mayor of Tabuk town in Kalinga and his wife for allegedly attempting to extort money from a contractor.

Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales has approved the indictment of former Tabuk town mayor Camilo Lammawin and his wife, Salud, for direct bribery and violation of Section 3(b) of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

Lammawin allegedly extorted P520,000 from Rodman Corporation, a contractor of the Tabuk Water Supply Project, in exchange for the release of payments due to the contractor.

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In her sworn statement, complainant Susan Rodriguez, the treasurer of Rodman Corporation, said that on July 10, 2002 the amounts of P100,000 and P300,000 were deposited to the personal bank accounts of the former local chief executive and his wife.

She added that on October 21, 2002, they deposited the amount of P120,000 to Lammawin's personal bank account, after Salud made a phone call demanding for the money as it would be used "for the purchase of land". In exchange, the Lammawins would facilitate the release of check payment to Rodman amounting to P1,732,260

Rodman's construction manager Roy Ragunton said the release of the payment would be made only if a "gift" is given to the former mayor "for his personal needs."

The Ombudsman found that the Lammawin spouses were recipients of cash deposits made by the complainant as they failed to show sufficient proof of entitlement to the amounts deposited.

It added that the "acts of the respondents showed conspiracy, in unity of mind and purpose, in extorting money from the complainant."

Direct bribery is punishable under Article 210 of the Revised Penal Code. Violation of Section 3(b) of Republic Act 3019 is committed by "directly or indirectly requesting or receiving any gift, present, share, percentage, or benefit, for himself or for any other person, in connection with any contract or transaction between the Government and any other party, wherein the public officer in his official capacity has to intervene under the law." (Sunnex)

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