Thursday, November 14, 2019

Sandigan affirms 90-day preventive suspension of Bataan mayor

Oct 22, 2019 @ 11:25

by Allan Yves Briones

“There are no ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ about it.”

The Sandiganbayan 6th Division had this much to say in denying Limay Mayor Nelson David’s motion for reconsideration in relation to his 90-day preventive suspension.

“To reiterate, the suspension pendente lite of an accused charged with an offense under R.A. No. 3019, or Title 7, Book II of the Revised Penal Code, or any offense involving fraud upon government of public funds or property is mandatory,” the anti-graft court stated in a resolution.

On August 20, 2019, David filed a motion assailing the court’s preventive suspension order, arguing that he had left the mayoral position back in 2010, depriving him of any opportunity to influence witnesses or tamper with documentary evidence related to his graft cases.

In addition, David claimed that his suspension is “whimsical, capricious and unnecessary”, defeating the intention of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

The court ruled, however, that the mayor has raised nothing new in his motion, being a mere rehash or reiteration of grounds and arguments resolved earlier.

“The possibility that accused David would hamper the prosecution of these cases by influencing, pressuring, or intimidating witnesses, or tampering documentary evidence is just one of the reasons in the imposition of his suspension pendente lite,” the court said. “The other one is to prevent him from committing further acts of malfeasance while in office.”

The Limay mayor is facing charges for allegedly authorizing the purchase of overpriced agricultural land worth P10.8 million owned by his two sons in 2002.

The resolution was written by Associate Justice Karl Miranda, concurred by Division Chairperson Sarah Jane Fernandez and Associate Justice Kevin Narce Vivero. #

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