(From AFP|Manila Times)
The Senate Blue Ribbon subcommittee in Philippines has recommended that criminal charges be filed against Vice President Jejomar Binay and his son, dismissed Makati City Mayor Jejomar Binary Jr.
The recommendation called for plunder charges to be filed against the Binays for the alleged overpriced construction of the Makati City Hall II parking building.
“The subcommittee believes that there was a grand conspiracy to milk the construction of the Makati City Hall II parking building for every peso that it could yield, through massive unmitigated overpricing,” the report said.
According to the report, the Makati City Hall Building II is “very clearly overpriced” as residents paid P2.2 billion for a building with a market value of P891 million, translating to it being overpriced by P1.3 billion.
The probe also investigated allegations of anomalies in the construction of the University of Makati Nursing building, Makati Science High School building and Makati Friendship suites.
Court orders senator’s arrest
A Makati City court on Monday ordered the arrest of Sen. Antonio Trillanes 4th in connection with a libel case filed against him by dismissed Makati City Mayor Jejomar Erwin “Junjun” Binay Jr, Manila Times reports.
Makati Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 142 Judge Dina Teves found probable cause to try the case and issued a warrant of arrest against Trillanes, according to Maricel Cairo, Makati RTC Clerk of Court.
The senator was slapped with the libel complaint for claiming that two justices of the Court of Appeals (CA) received P50 million in exchange for issuance of a temporary restraining order stopping implementation of a suspension order against the mayor.
Binay, in his complaint filed in April 2015, described Trillanes’ allegations as “malicious.”
The Binay camp earlier said Trillanes could not invoke parliamentary immunity because he made the baseless allegations outside Congress.
Claro Certeza, Binay’s legal counsel, said Trillanes cannot cower behind the doctrine of parliamentary immunity. His malicious and scurrilous accusations regarding the fictitious bribery charges against Binay were made in public, outside the halls of the Senate.
Certeza noted that Trillanes did not make the accusations during a congressional inquiry.
“Moreover, it was not made in relation to the discharge of his functions as a senator. It is apparent that his motivation is to besmirch the reputation of the Binay family and destroy the integrity of the judiciary. He must be held accountable,” he said.