Sandigan junks Napoles ‘main plunderer’ motion

September 05, 2019
Janet Lim Napoles

THE Sandiganbayan Fifth Division has junked the motion of alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles to require the Office of the Ombudsman to identify the main plunderer in the P183-million case in which former Sen. Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada is her co-accused.

In a ruling dated September 2, the anti-graft division said Napoles’ ex-parte motion has no bearing since Estrada, being a public official at the time that the crime was allegedly committed, is supposed to be the main plunderer.

“The eyes are useless when the mind is blind.  It is apparent that the Information refers to Estrada as the mastermind of the PDAF scheme or the main plunderer.  The main plunderer is a public officer,” said the ruling.

The anti-graft court said Napoles cannot invoke the dismissal of the P366-million plunder case of former President Gloria Arroyo because all of the accused in that case were public officers.

“In the Arroyo case, it is hard to determine who the main plunderer is, considering that there is an enumeration of the names of all the accused who are all public officials who occupy positions with authority, connections and influence, which is not the case in the present Information,” said the court.