Another plunder complaint has been filed against former President Gloria Arroyo, this time in connection with the alleged misuse of Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) intelligence funds.
Laurence Arroyo, the former President’s counsel, said the case is different from the P366 million plunder raps also filed against the former leader for the alleged misuse of PCSO funds. The case pending at the Sandiganbayan covers 2008 to 2010.
“It’s a new complaint for plunder and malversation in connection with the PCSO intelligence fund, filed by the FIO (Field Investigation Office of the Ombudsman). The Ombudsman is conducting a preliminary investigation. It covers the years 2004 to 2007,” Arroyo, who is not related to the former President, told The Manila Times in a text message.
On May 25, the Supreme Court tasked the Sandiganbayan to “give prompt and preferential attention” to the directive to present the records of the plunder cases involving the PCSO.
In April, the Supreme Court also extended a Status Quo Ante Order on the pending P366 million plunder raps against Arroyo which put her plunder trial on hold until June 20.
Arroyo’s counsel, however, is confident that his client will not be indicted again for plunder.
“We’re confident that this will not prosper because former President Arroyo did not amass a single centavo of those intelligence funds,” the lawyer said.
President-elect Rodrigo Duterte earlier said that he is in favor of granting house arrest to Arroyo, who was re-elected as Pampanga Representative.
Duterte’s PDP-Laban party has inked a coalition pact with Arroyo’s Lakas-CMD party.