• Ombudsman probes Jinggoy’s ‘dummies’

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    The Office of the Ombudsman is investigating individuals who were identified by the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) as alleged dummies of Sen. Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada.

    Estrada is facing plunder and graft charges at the Sandiganbayan for reportedly receiving P183 million in kickbacks by pouring his pork barrel funds to bogus projects.

    “The office is conducting the fact-finding investigation on these persons,” Assistant Ombudsman Asryman Rafanan said, explaining that the Ombudsman would have to follow the proper procedure and give these individuals the opportunity to clear their names.

    State prosecutors earlier moved for the seizure of Estrada’s assets pending resolution of the P183-million plunder case against him.

    Citing an AMLC report, prosecutors said the total commissions or rebates allegedly pocketed by Estrada from his pork barrel allocation were received “by himself or through his dummies, namely, Pauline Labayen, Carl Dominic Labayen, and Juan Tan Ng within a period of 30 days from the dates mentioned in the Luy ledger or summary of rebates.”

    “The remaining P86.875 million, which were not included in the Luy ledger, were reflected in the fund transfers from Napoles to Juan Tan Ng and Francis Yenko who were considered by the AMLC as dummies of Estrada,” the report added.

    Rafanan said at this stage, the anti-graft office cannot say if these alleged Jinggoy dummies will be impleaded.

    “If there are findings eventually, then the procedure also states that the information [charge sheet]may be amended,” he said.

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