THE camp of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has asked the Sandiganbayan to allow her to be detained at her house in La Vista, Quezon City.
Arroyo, now a Pampanga representative, is facing a P366 million plunder case at the anti-graft court’s First Division in connection with the alleged misuse of state charity funds during her presidency.
“President Arroyo has been under hospital arrest at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) in Quezon City ever since the Honorable Court issued a warrant for her arrest on 4 October 2012. She now respectfully seeks to modify this custodial arrangement and asks, for the sake of her well-being, to be placed under house arrest, subject to clearance by her doctors,” her lawyers said.
“President Arroyo will be no more a flight risk at home than she is in the hospital. The same sick and frail woman who occupies the VMMC will be the same sick and frail woman who will occupy her house in La Vista Subdivision,” they added.
The lawyers cited the case of former President Joseph Estrada who was tried for plunder and allowed house arrest in his Tanay rest house. Estrada was found guilty in 2007 but was pardoned by Arroyo.
“[T]here is no difference between a rest house in Rizal and a house in Quezon City,” they said.
“The same platoon of policemen who secure her at the sprawling VMMC grounds will be the same platoon of policemen who will secure her in her more modest residential grounds,” Arroyo’s lawyers added.