THE Senate committee investigating the P6.6-billion housing scam has summoned Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Allan Purisima to explain why the national police removed businessman Delfin Lee, the owner of the Globe Asiatique (GA) Realty Housing Corp., from the “most wanted persons list.”
Sen. Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito, during the hearing of the Senate committee on urban planning, housing and resettlement, said that aside from Lee and other former housing officials, the com mittee will also ask Purisima to appear in the next hearing to shed light on the delisting of the GA owner from the most wanted list.
Ejercito explained that although the committee investigation’s main focus was to find out the truth behind the housing controversy that victimized thousands of ordinary Filipino people and to go after those responsible, it was also important to look into the alleged attempt to protect Lee from criminal prosecution.
“We need to look into the controversy that surrounds Lee’s arrest in order to find what really happened,” the senator said in an interview after the hearing Tuesday afternoon.
It was Sen. Nancy Binay who asked for an investigation into Lee’s alleged deletion
from the most wanted list as well as the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group’s (CIDG) issuance of a certification of the GA president’s removal from the list of the warrant of arrest database.
Binay expressed serious concern about the actions of Purisima, who reportedly wrote a letter that paved way for the removal of Lee’s name from the wanted list and the certification from the CIDG, both of which are being used by the camp of Delfin Lee to question his arrest.
Lee was arrested by police last March 6 at the Hyatt Hotel in Malate, Manila after two years of eluding arrest in connection with a criminal case for syndicated estafa over the P6.6-billion housing scandal.
He was arrested by PNP-Task Force Tugis headed by Senior Supt. Conrad Capa who was ordered relieved and transferred by Purisima merely a week after the successful operation.
Purisima’s order to relieve Capa further raised speculations that Lee was being protected by “powerful” people.
President Benigno Aquino 3rd defended Purisima’s move and even scolded Capa and denied him recognition for the successful arrest of Lee.
The Senate committee will grill Purisima about the controversial transfer in a bid to put an end to the issue.