Petrasanta posts bail

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Former Police Chief Supt. Raul Petrasanta posted P30,000 bail for his provisional liberty over a graft case he is facing at the Sandiganbayan in connection with the allegedly anomalous courier deal with Werfast Documentation Agency, Inc. (Werfast) in 2011.

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Petrasanta was among 16 former Philippine National Police (PNP) officials charged by the Office of the Ombudsman in May this year along with former PNP Director General Alan Purisima in connection with the said deal.

The case was raffled off to the anti-graft court’s Sixth Division on Friday.
The court has yet to determine if probable cause exists to proceed to trial and to issue arrest warrants.

Aside from Purisima and Petrasanta, named respondents were former PNP officials Napoleon Estilles, Gil Meneses, Allan Parreño, Eduardo Acierto, Melchor Reyes, Lenbell Fabia, Sonia Calixto, Nelson Bautista, Ford Tuazon, and Ricardo Zapata Jr.

Mario Juan, Salud Bautista, Enrique Valerio, Lorna Perena, and Juliana Pasia — who were identified in the charge sheet as Werfast incorporators — were also charged.

Assistant Special Prosecutor III Lalaine Benitez of the Office of the Special Prosecutor, which is under the Ombudsman, accused the respondents of violating Section 3(e) of Republic Act No. 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

Benitez alleged that the respondents gave Werfast unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference by entering into a Memorandum of Agreement with Werfast for the latter to provide courier services for all firearms license applications with the PNP.

Respondents allegedly accredited Werfast despite its failure to comply with government regulations on courier services such as prior registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission, authority from the Department of Transportation and Communications to operate a delivery service and accreditation by the Department of Science and Technology, and with the PNP criteria for accreditation.

The Ombudsman recommended P30,000 bail each for the respondents’ provisional liberty.

Under Section 3(e) of the anti-graft law, public officials are prohibited from causing undue injury to any party, or giving any private party any unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference in the discharge of their official administrative or judicial functions through manifest partiality, evident bad faith or gross inexcusable negligence.

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