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Palace: Nothing irregular about long wait for arrests in ‘pork’ scam

Posted On 2014 Jun 16
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Senate Minority leader Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile, one of the accused in the so-called pork barrel scam, stresses a point in interpellating Senator Koko Pimentel III, sponsor of the Sandigan Bill, who sought the support of his colleagues for the passage of the measure, seeking to improve the disposition of cases in the Sandiganbayan on Wednesday (March 5) at the Session Hall, Senate Bldg in Pasay City. (MNS photo)

Senate Minority leader Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile, one of the accused in the so-called pork barrel scam, stresses a point in interpellating Senator Koko Pimentel III, sponsor of the Sandigan Bill, who sought the support of his colleagues for the passage of the measure, seeking to improve the disposition of cases in the Sandiganbayan on Wednesday (March 5) at the Session Hall, Senate Bldg in Pasay City. (MNS photo)

MANILA (Mabuhay) – Malacañang on Saturday said it sees nothing irregular with the possible long “wait” for the arrest of personalities charged before the Sandiganbayan for the P10-billion pork barrel scam.

Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said there are “voluminous” documents to be studied by the graft court justices handling the graft and plunder cases against the respondents.

“That is not out of the ordinary considering [the] voluminous documents…Talagang totoo namang marami ang dokumento na isinumite,” Valte said on government-run dzRB radio.

Hindi tayo magugulat kung… hindi lang kumplikado but the sheer volume ng mga dokumento. Ito ang review nila, …they will need some time,” she added.

Among those charged for the scam are suspected mastermind Janet Napoles and Senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada and Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr., and private individuals.

On Friday, the cases against the personalities charged were raffled off in the Sandiganbayan.

While the justices have 10 days to determine if there is probable cause for trial and issue a warrant of arrest, the arrest warrants could take longer than 10 days, depending on how long it would take the justices to study the cases.

Meanwhile, Valte said it is up to the Sandiganbayan division concerned to grant Enrile his petition for bail, where he cited his deteriorating health and advanced age.

“Those factors, it will be up to the division hearing his case on how to consider the factors he raised, mainly based on his age and his health,” she said. (MNS)

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