The Office of the Ombudsman filed charges against five former lawmakers who allegedly misused their Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) or pork barrel.
Charged at the Sandiganbayan were former Representatives Rizalina Seachon-Lanete of Masbate, Samuel Dangwa of Benguet, Rodolfo Plaza of Agusan del Sur, Constantino Jaraula of Cagayan de Oro and Edgar Valdez of the Association of Philippine Electric Cooperatives (APEC). Lanete is now the governor of Masbate.
Lanete and Valdez face separate charges of plunder because the amount they allegedly pilfered was more than P50 million.
Valdez’s co-accused in the plunder case is Janet Lim-Napoles and her employee John Raymund de Asis.
Charged along with Lanete were his aide Jose Sumalpong, Napoles and De Asis.
Lanete was accused of receiving P108.405 million in kickbacks from 2004 to 2010 from projects funded by her PDAF.
Valdez, whose alleged kickbacks totaled P57.787 million from 2004 to 2010, was also charged with seven counts of violation of the Sec. 3(e).
The five cases involved a total amount of around P339 million, Assistant Ombudsman Asryman Rafanan said. Reina Tolentino