Ex-Albay lawmaker charged with plunder

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THE Office of the Ombudsman has been urged to conduct a lifestyle check on former Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman who is facing charges of plunder.

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Citing a special audit report by the Commission on Audit (COA), private complainant Hernando Bruce alleged that Lagman conspired with his daughter Krisel Lagman- Luistro to accumulate P240 million from 2007 to 2009.

“I am requesting for an immediate lifestyle check involving the following properties since I have also discovered that the respondents have acquired several questionable properties which were obviously funded out of his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), which are in the name of their known dummies who are their close relatives and friends, partial photos of which are attached herewith,” Bruce said in a supplemental affidavit filed at the Office of the Ombudsman on Tuesday.

He presented photos of a gravel and sand rock crusher plant in Sto. Domingo in Albay, “the frontage of the huge mansion of the respondent Lagman which sprawled in a 10 – hectare property in Sogod, Bacacay, Albay,” and a heavy equipment garage in Bacacay.

Bruce said there were other properties “presumed to be owned” by Lagman. These include a mansion in the US, Tagaytay, and Legazpi City; a printing press in Quezon City; a commercial land in Brgy. Sto. Cristo; and real properties in Tabaco City.

In April, Bruce filed a graft complaint with the Ombudsman last April against Lagman, alleging that the latter “diverted his PDAF for the development of areas outside his legislative district.”

He alleged that the former lawmaker funded projects that were supposedly constructed in private properties and “other projects that unduly benefited private entities and/or those that were deemed anomalous.”

Further, Bruce said that the special audit report listed several transactions charged against Lagman’s PDAF with “suppliers of questionable existence” for projects in Tabaco.

Lagman however said the allegation that he accumulated ill-gotten wealth “is completely false, unwarranted and malicious.”

He said the charges were “politically motivated.”

Lagman said Bruce was part of his campaign team in 1987 but after the elections, the latter wanted a post he was not qualified for.

The former lawmaker also denied diverting his PDAF or pork barrel allocation for projects outside the first district of Albay.

He added that he had projects outside his district that were funded by the leadership fund provided to officers of the House of Representatives. He maintained that he has no hidden assets as claimed by Bruce.

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5 Comments

  1. How much of that 10 billion did the De Lima and the Aquino administration recover from these thieves ?

  2. Of course we want everyone caught who steals like this from the country. Yes its right to check into everyone possible who steals from the country. It cant all be done at the same time but at least something has been done which is a start. Now if & when the powers that be change then its the other side who hopefully will be checked into, then each & every person involved in graft & corruption will realise whoever you are there is no hiding place. I hope they have in place a system that if it finds graft & or corruption had taken place no matter how many years before & the culprits have since died but their inheritance was passed down, that, that also can be reclaimed from the people now benefitting from that said graft & corruption.

  3. One thing for sure without even looking the accused is not a liberal party member,
    The Ombudsman does not charge liberal party thieves.

    Hundreds of Aquino’s allies misused the pork barrel allocations to enrich themselves and the Ombudsman and the Dept of Justice arrested and jailed only 3 opposition senators.

    Two years later and still nothing.

    • Stick to the issues. Did Lagman owns properties as stated in the complaint ? I believe most of the legislators on one way or another used their PDAP in suspicious manner. I did not say stole the pdap, I said questionable manner because I do not have proof. Let COA check.

    • The COA had years to check and did not. The COA like every other Aquino appointed agency will not charge or investigate anyone connected to Aquino.

      The Supreme court ordered Ombudsman office to investigate misuse of the 150 billion DAP Fund by Aquino and Abad years ago, still waiting for that to start.

      Long story short, the Ombudsman needs to be replaced.