• Behest case vs Marcos, crony: ‘Significant win’


    Malacañang on Tuesday welcomed a decision of the Sandiganbayan ordering the Marcoses and the Lim family that owns Taggat Industries to return all the property claimed by the government.

    The Sandiganbayan Second Division decided on Civil Case Number 0030, which the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) filed in 1987, a year after Ferdinand Marcos was ousted as President.

    The original defendants in the 28-year-old case were Alfonso Lim Sr. (who died in 2002), Alfonso Lim Jr, Marcos-time Environment Minister Teodoro Peña, Ferdinand Marcos and First Lady Imelda Marcos and seve- ral corporations.

    The Marcoses’ three children—incumbent Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee Marcos, Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Irene Marcos-Araneta—were also named substitute defendants through a Sandiganbayan order in 1991.

    Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the Sandiganbayan decision is a victory of the people after a long wait.

    “The judgment rendered by the Sandiganbayan is a significant win for the Filipino people in the long-term effort to recover assets that had been illegally acquired during the dictatorship by known cronies of then President Ferdinand Marcos,” Coloma told reporters in a text message.

    “The PCGG will implement the decision once it attains finality,” he said.

    In the 35-page decision on December 14, 2015, the anti-graft court ordered the return of the remaining assets registered to Alfonso Lim Sr. to the government that amounted to an estimated value of P378 million in 2006.

    These assets include pieces of property in Tagaytay City (P206.6 million), Batangas (P96.8 million) and Angono, Rizal (P74.5 million).

    Meanwhile, Lim’s assets in Cagayan and Manila have been sold at a public auction to settle tax liabilities and labor claims, according to the Sandiganbayan.

    Lim, who died in 2002, reportedly acquired these pieces of pro- perty through timber concessions and management contracts.

    The court also ordered the return of sequestered aircraft, RP-C208 Cessna Centurion II and RP-C333 Cessna Golden Eagle, which are registered under the name of Taggat Industries.

    The aircraft have been grounded at the Manila Domestic Airport since 1994.

    Aside from Marcos and Lim, other defendants in the case were former First Lady Imelda Marcos, Alfonso Lim Jr., Teodoro Q. Peña, Taggat Industries, Pamplona Redwood, Southern Plywood, Western Cagayan, Veterans Woodworks Inc., Sierra Madre Wood and Tropical Philippines Wood Industries Inc.


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