Duterte ally Dennis Uy’s Phoenix ordered to pay P157 million to Absolut Distillers

Filipino billionaires Dennis Uy (left), founder of Udenna Corporation and an ally of former President Rodrigo Duterte, and Lucio Tan, founder and CEO of LT Group, Inc. (Photos: Dennis Uy – Udenna; NAT GARCIA/AFP via Getty Images)
Filipino billionaires Dennis Uy (left), founder of Udenna Corporation and an ally of former President Rodrigo Duterte, and Lucio Tan, founder and CEO of LT Group, Inc. (Photos: Dennis Uy – Udenna; NAT GARCIA/AFP via Getty Images)

A Batangas court has ruled in favor of tycoon Lucio Tan in collecting P157 million debt from businessman and former President Rodrigo Duterte ally Dennis Uy’s Phoenix Petroleum Philippines.

Judge Wilhelmina Go-Santiago of Batangas Regional Trial court on Wednesday (September 28) issued a writ of preliminary attachment against Phoenix for its failure to pay P157.255 million worth of bioethanol products supplied by Tan’s Absolut Distillers Inc.

This comes after Uy failed to pay the debt “despite numerous demands” according to Absolut Distillers.

“We command that you attach the defendant’s property/ies , real and personal, not exempt from the execution of the said defendant (Phoenix), located in your jurisdiction, to the value of the demands and costs of suit,” Go-Santiago said in the writ.

The document was sent to Ruby Ferrer, clerk of court and ex-officio sheriff of Taguig RTC, which was given 10 days to return the writ and make a report.

“You safely keep the same according to the Rules of Court, unless the defendant gives security to pay such judgment as may be recovered in the action,” she added.

The court further issued garnishment notices against Phoenix’s depository banks including BDO Unibank Inc., Philippine National Bank, Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co., and Bank of the Philippine Islands, among others.

Phoenix was Uy’s biggest business before 2016 until it expanded into telecommunications (DITO), oil production (Malampaya), casino hotel (PH Resorts Group), real estate (Udenna Tower) and logistics (Chelsea) during his ally former President Rodrigo Duterte’s term.

However, the businessman reportedly started selling his assets months before Duterte stepped down from his position.

Earlier, Bloomberg reported that Uy might deal with nearly $700 million worth of loans maturing in 2022, including debts by its China-affiliated DITO Telecommunity Corporation.

Pola Rubio is a news writer and photojournalist covering Philippine politics and events. She regularly follows worldwide and local happenings. She advocates for animal welfare and press freedom. Follow her on twitter @polarubyo for regular news and cat postings. The views expressed are his own.

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