Besides the plunder charges filed against Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile over the pork barrel scam, the Department of Justice (DOJ) will now heed the call of Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago to investigate the 89-year-old lawmaker over a variety of alleged crimes.
In an ambush interview, Justice Sectary Leila de Lima said that they will look into the allegations of smuggling, illegal logging and online gambling in the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) involving Enrile.
“Now, off hand, we can look into allegations pertaining to alleged smuggling, alleged illegal logging, alleged gambling, specially online [gambling], those related to CEZA. Kasi ang naaalala ko nga, and this started nung time pa noong andiyan pa si Secretary [Jessie] Robredo, na the PNP [Philippine National Police] has been undertaking operations against online gambling. They are justifying it on the basis of the license issued at CEZA,” de Lima said.
She said that the only problem in investigating the CEZA gambling case, the legality of the CEZA operation is now pending before the Supreme Court.
“Unfortunately, nakakakuha sila ng TRO [temporary restraining order]from local courts and in fact ang nangyari, ang mga kinakasuhan ay yung mga law enforcers, nababaligtad. But I remember also issuing an opinion on request of Secretary Jess on that TRO,” she added.
With this, de Lima said that she will review her legal opinion on the issue.
De Lima also said that she will review again the speech of Santiago against Enrile.
It will be recalled that during her privilege speech earlier this week, Santiago accused Enrile of being a criminal, smuggler, illegal logger and womanizer.