05/24/2012 [ tribune.net.ph ]
Warrants of arrest have been issued against Globe Asiatique (GA) owner Delfin Lee and his co-accused after a judge found probable cause for the syndicated estafa case filed against them, Vice President Jejomar Binay said yesterday.
Binay, the chairman of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council, said Judge Amifaith Fider-Reyes of the Regional Trial Court Branch 42 in San Fernando, Pampanga, issued the warrants of arrest Tuesday with no recommendation for bail.
“Globe Asiatique defrauded the ordinary workers who are contributors of Pag-IBIG Fund. The company defrauded hardworking citizens of Pampanga by selling property they have purchased legitimately to other buyers, a practice known as double selling. The issuance of the warrants of arrest against Delfin Lee and his co-accused just shows that the law is on the side of the ordinary workers duped by Globe Asiatique,” he said.
Binay is also the chairman of the Pag-IBIG board of trustees.
The housing czar said he was told that Reyes initially deferred the issuance of the warrants and directed the prosecution team to present additional evidence. However, upon the prosecution’s inquiry, it was discovered that the court staff had not told the judge that there were six boxes of evidence in court.
“After reviewing the pertinent evidence, Reyes issued the warrants of arrest. We were informed that the court staff are now required by the judge to show cause why they should not be penalized for the non-disclosure,” the Vice President said.
Department of Justice (DoJ) prosecutor general Claro Arellano yesterday confirmed that a warrant of has been issued for the arrest of Lee and his co-accused.
The DoJ had previously recommended the filing of syndicated estafa charges against Lee and several others after an investigation ordered by Binay revealed that GA used “ghost borrowers” and fake documents to obtain over P6.5 billion in loans from Pag-IBIG.
In October 2010, after he was named housing czar, Binay directed Pag-IBIG to file charges of syndicated estafa against Lee and other GA officials, together with an officer of the agency, before the DoJ.
A Pasig regional trial court judge issued a temporary restraining order covering the syndicated estafa case and another case for “double sale” filed against GA, but the Court of Appeals in a decision last month allowed the DoJ to continue filing the syndicated estafa charges.
“We will remain vigilant in monitoring the case until Delfin Lee and his co-accused are behind bars,” Binay said.