• Leviste seeks dismissal of malversation case

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    Former Batangas Governor Jose Antonio Leviste has asked the Sandiganbayan’s Fifth Division to throw out the malversation case filed against him over the P151,385.42 cash advances which he allegedly failed to liquidate in 2003 when he was Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA).

    On Monday, the defense filed a 12-page omnibus motion which sought case dismissal on the ground of lack of probable cause.

    “Accused Leviste stands before the Honorable Court professing that he was charged without the requisite evidence to establish probable cause,” it said.

    The defense argued that there is no proof that Leviste received the alleged cash advances.

    The signature of the claimant on the disbursement voucher covering a cash advance for a supposed trip to China on September 4 to 17, 2003 was not Leviste’s, it said.

    It added that the disbursement vouchers covering cash advances for supposed travel to Japan from September 8 to October 2, 2003 as well as to Hong Kong and China from December 7 to 12, 2003 had no claimants because there was no signature indicating that the sums were claimed.

    “Therefore, there is no proof on record that he had custody of the said funds,” the defense said.

    Leviste’s camp further argued that the alleged unliquidated cash advance for a supposed Japan trip from October 24 to 29, 2003 were already liquidated “based on the letter provided by PRA to accused Leviste when he requested for documents from the said office in 2014.”

    Citing the actual proof of expenses that Leviste submitted, it added that there is proof that he used his cash advances in accordance with the purpose for which they were disbursed.

    REINA TOLENTINO

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