Court gives Revilla camp 20 days to answer prosecution

Bong Revilla Jr.

THE camp of former Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla was given 20 days to comment on the prosecution’s motion seeking to compel him to pay the government the amount of P124.5 million.

The Sandiganbayan Special First Division granted Revilla’s motion, through his lawyer Estelito Mendoza, to give him time to formally file a comment until February 20.

Earlier, the state prosecutors filed a motion asking the Sandiganbayan to issue a writ of execution to compel Revilla to return the money which is part of the pork barrel funds.

The Sandiganbayan exonerated Revilla of plunder, but ordered him to return to the government the P124.5 million as civil liability.

Revilla was accused of earning kickbacks amounting to P224 million from pork barrel-funded projects given to fake non-government organizations of Janet Lim-Napoles.

Napoles and Revilla’s former chief of staff Richard Cambe were sentenced to reclusion perpetua.

The prosecution pointed out that although Revilla was declared not guilty of plunder, he was not declared to be without civil liability because the decision that was promulgated on December 7, 2018, was “based merely on reasonable doubt and not due to the absolute failure of the prosecution to prove his guilt.”

Meanwhile, the anti-graft court gave the prosecution 10 days to comment once Revilla issues a reply to the Ombudsman’s motion.

Previously, Revilla’s lawyers claimed that he was no longer liable to shell out any  money, as the decision cited Article 100 of the Revised Penal Code Article 100 of the RPC says “every person criminally liable for a felony is also civilly liable.”

Because of this, Revilla’s counsel argued that they should not take part in returning the missing PDAF because he was not found criminally liable of plunder.