DETAINED Senator Leila de Lima called the plan to use convicted criminals in the election protest against her as a desperate move by Presidential Political Adviser Francis Tolentino.
“His election protest case is so near bankruptcy that he is desperate enough to use the same convicted criminals used against me by the administration,” De Lima said.
De Lima advised Tolentino to carefully study his own election protest case with his lawyers before talking in public. She said that Tolentino “exposes his ignorance” about his own case.
The former Justice Secretary argued that the convicts Tolentino has mentioned are disqualified by law from becoming state witnesses.
“The law deems their word unreliable and untrustworthy. The claim of some of them that they gave money for my campaign funds is an absolute falsehood. Tolentino’s reliance on the word of convicted criminals to support his case only shows how hollow it already is,” De Lima stressed.
Earlier, Tolentino claimed that he can use the testimony of convicted gang leader Herbert Colangco of giving P3 million bribe to De Lima. This will put into question the statement of expenses of De Lima during the elections.
On automatically replacing her as the 12th place senator if she resigns, De Lima said Tolentino’s case is different from Senator Koko Pimentel.
She pointed out that there is no provision in any election laws which states that if the 12th-ranked winning senator resigns, the 13th-ranked but losing senatorial candidate automatically becomes senator.