FORMER Puerto Princesa City Mayor Edward Hagedorn pleaded not guilty to the graft, perjury and breach of conduct charges filed against him before the Sandiganbayan’s Fifth Division during his arraignment on Tuesday.
Hagedorn, who is out on bail, is facing charges before the anti-graft court’s over his alleged failure to “truthfully and accurately declare” several real properties, motor vehicles and corporate/business interests in his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Networth (SALN) for 2004 to 2012.
In April, Hagedorn’s lawyer filed an urgent omnibus motion asking the court to dismiss the cases based on the “principle of duplicity of suits, due process and justice.”
He also claimed that having no knowledge of “the technical rules of law, the accused believed that the two-page attachment to his SALN was sufficient compliance with the requirements. The petitioner believed that he has divested his interests in said corporations by executing the deeds of trust in favor of his grandchildren.
Common sense also dictates that scrap vehicles could not be considered as assets. Same common sense also dictates that the motorcycles distributed…are no longer owned by petitioner.”
In July, the court denied the urgent omnibus motion for lack of merit.
The anti-graft court pointed out that “duplicity of charges mean a single complaint or information that charges more than one offense,” citing a 2009 Supreme Court ruling.
Hagedorn then filed a motion for reconsideration, which the Fifth Division in October also denied for lack of merit.