FILE PHOTO: Janet Lim Napoles
QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The Sandiganbayan has sentenced ‘pork barrel’ scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles and Richard Cambe a lifetime in jail as the anti-graft court on Friday (December 7) acquitted Cambe’s former boss, former senator Ramon ‘Bong’ Revilla Jr.
Napoles and Cambe were sentenced to ‘reclusion perpetua’ or 40 years imprisonment.
Based on the decision of the Sandiganbayan Special Fifth Division, the prosecution failed to prove that Revilla was guilty of amassing P224.5M from his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) to support Napoles’ fake foundations.
The court also ruled that it was Cambe who was guilty of misusing the funds.
The Sandiganbayan also ordered Napoles, Cambe and Revilla to return P124 million in line with the case.
With the conviction, Napoles will remain inside the Correctional Institution for Women in Mandaluyong while Cambe, who was previously detained at the Philippine National Police (PNP) Custodial Center, will be transferred to the New Bilibid Prison.
On June 2014, the Office of the Ombudsman filed plunder cases before the Sandiganbayan against Revilla and his colleagues, former senators Juan Ponce Enrile and Jinggoy Estrada. Napoles and Cambe were among the co-accused.
Enrile, then 92-years-old, was allowed bail due to old age, while the court said evidence failed to establish that Estrada was the main plunderer in the case.
The case is dubbed as the biggest corruption case decided by the Sandiganbayan to date. – Marje Pelayo | UNTV News & Rescue
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