The camp of former Makati Mayor Elenita S. Binay assailed the Office of the Ombudsman for resurrecting a case dismissed six years ago and adding two complaints, one of which is based on an alleged incident that happened 15 years ago.
The resurrected cases are included in a motion filed by the Ombudsman at the Sandiganbayan to admit amended information against the wife of Vice President Jejomar C. Binay.
Elaine Hernandez, Mrs. Binay’s lawyer, noted that the complaint involving the purchase of two units of cryosurgical pressure and volumetric pressure pump for the Ospital ng Makati was filed seven years ago. The case was dismissed a year later by the Ombudsman for insufficient evidence in a resolution dated Sept. 24, 2009.
But the Special Prosecutor of the Office of the Ombudsman decided to reinstate Mrs. Binay as one of the accused through a simple Memorandum dated May 11, 2015, Hernandez said.
“Worse, they did not even bother to inform her that her name has been inserted. That is a clear violation of her right to due process,” she added.
“To think that Mrs. Binay was not among the original accused in the Sept. 24, 2009 resolution, and no probable cause was found against her, resulting in the dismissal of the charges. Yet, the Special Prosecutor has asked the 4th Division of the Sandiganbayan to admit the Amended Informations to include Mrs. Binay as an accused in the two criminal cases,” the lawyer said.
In September 2014, the Office of the Ombudsman also filed a case against Mrs. Binay involving the purchase of an X-ray machine for the Ospital ng Makati.
“This case is supposedly based on events that allegedly happened as early as 1999 to 2000, and based on findings included in COA STFLGU Report No. 2001-001 dated 19 April 2002. Notably, it has taken the Complainant 14 years to file the complaint,” Hernandez said.
In August 2015, the Ombudsman filed another case against Mrs. Binay, this time involving fetal monitors in the Ospital ng Makati.
“Once again, this case is supposedly based on events that allegedly happened as early 2000, and based on findings included in COA STFLGU Report No. 2001-001dated 19 April 2002. Notably, it has taken the Complainant 15 years to file the Complaint,” she said.
Hernandez said the inclusion of these years-old cases violates the Ombudsman Act that bars the Ombudsman from conducting an investigation based on a complaint filed “one year from the occurrence of the act or omission complained of.”