Ex-police official’s wealth forfeited

THE Sandiganbayan has penalized former Police General Danilo Mangila for allegedly amassing unexplained wealth worth P15.8 million.

Mangila served as director of the PNP Traffic Management Group and as Assistant Secretary of the Presidential Anti-Smuggling Group during the Arroyo administration,  

In a 53-page decision the Sandiganbayan Seventh Division ordered the confiscation of Mangila’s assets in the questioned amount in favor of the government.

Associate Justice Georgina D. Hidalgo penned the verdict with Associate Justices Ma. Theresa Dolores C. Gomez-Estoesta and Zaldy V. Trespeses concurring.

According to the anti-graft court, Mangila failed to truthfully explain how he was able to acquire six real estate properties with a combined value of P9.103 million together with 12 cars and four motorcycles including a 2003 Harley Davidson all totaling P7.375 million.

The Sandiganbayan also questioned Mangila’s 18 trips to various countries from 1993 to 2005 while his wife flew overseas 16 times during the same period.

Among the places they visited were Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya in Japan; Honolulu, Hawaii and Los Angeles, California in the United States; Singapore; Hong Kong; Seoul in South Korea; France; and Australia.

The  justices noted that during those years, Mangila only earned P2.006 million in salaries and P1.003 million in allowances or just over P3 million.

The former police officer claimed that he had started a car buy and sell venture and car rental business in Quezon City.

However, according to the city’s Business Permit and Licensing Office,  there is no business permit issued in the name of P/CSupt Danilo P. Mangila and/or Nine o Nine Trans Services and Car Merchant.

A KTV and restaurant business reported losses totaling P3.64 million during its operation from 2000 to 2004.

“Verily and with these facts on hand, …respondent Mangila’s lawful income for the said period…was grossly insufficient to finance the acquisition of his assets in the aggregate amount of P15,806,403.65,” the court declared.

The Sandiganbayan clarified that there is no law prohibiting government employees from acquiring properties and to register these under their names as long as it can be shown that these came from the “fruits of their legitimate toils.”

“Membership in the government service does not in any way strip government employees of their constitutionally guaranteed right to own properties. Unfortunately, respondent Mangila failed to prove that he has lived a life proportionate to his means,” the court added.

Among the properties forfeited in favor of the government were three lots in Quezon City, and one each in Calamba, Laguna, in Trece Martires, Cavite and  in Calapan, Oriental Mindoro.

Also covered by the forfeiture order were a 2003 Harley Davidson motorcycle, a 2003 Honda motorcycle, a Toyota Rav4, a Hyundai Starex van, a Toyota Hi-ace and several other motor vehicles.

With Jezreel Biscocho