MANILA (Mabuhay) — Justice Secretary Leila de Lima on Monday refused to confirm a newspaper report that said Sen. Gringo Honasan is among the next batch of individuals who will soon face charges in connection with the P10-billion pork barrel scam.
“At this point, I cannot confirm nor deny kung accurate ba iyan or what kasi alam niyo naman consistent iyong ating policy na we only announce kapag na-file na,” De Lima said.
De Lima was reacting to a Philippine Daily Inquirer report that said based on a reliable source, Honasan is among the respondents in the third batch of cases that will be filed by the Department of Justice in connection with the pork barrel scam.
She said the special task force created by the DOJ under Undersecretary Jose Justiniano has already told her it has nothing to do with the supposed leak of information.
“I actually immediately asked iyong special task force kung may kinalaman sila dyan sa [leak] na iyan. Ang sabi nila ‘No,’ hindi nila alam saang galing iyang leakage na iyan,” she said.
De Lima said the DOJ and the National Bureau of Investigation have yet to decide whether to file the third batch of criminal charges this week.
Aside from Honasan, other supposed respondents in the third batch of cases are:
Director General Joel Villanueva of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA),
La Union Rep. Victor Ortega (first district),
former La Union Rep. Manuel Ortega,
former Zamboanga Rep. Isidoro Real Jr.,
Manila Rep. Amado Bagatsing (fifth district),
Cagayan de Oro Rep. Rufus Rodriguez (second district),
Abono party-list Rep. Conrado Estrella III and
former Abono party-list Rep. Robert Raymund Estrella
The respondents will be slapped with a malversation complaint, according to the Inquirer.
Alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles will also be charged, it added. (MNS)