THE Department of Justice (DOJ) can initiate the filing of charges against
since the Senate has gathered sufficient evidence to warrant his indictment, Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said on Tuesday.
Marcos said the committee on agriculture and food, which held an inquiry on rice smuggling, has enough evidence to recommend the filing of criminal cases against Bangayan and his cohorts.
The senator said he expects the panel to recommend the filing of charges against Bangayan, the alleged leader of drug smugglers. Sen. Cynthia Villar on Monday recommended the filing of perjury charges against Bangayan for lying before the committee.
Bangayan has denied that he is David Tan, but the National Bureau of Investigation maintained that Tan and Bangayan are one and the same.
Villar also recommended Bangayan’s inclusion in the watch list order of the DOJ and the cancellation of his passport.
“I’m sure the recommendation of the committee, together with the findings of the committee, will be to file cases not only against David Tan or Davidson Bangayan but also against others,” Marcos said.
He added that charges may also be filed against David Lim and Emmanuel Santos for their supposed involvement in rice smuggling.
Villar said it is up to the DOJ to take action now that the Senate panel was able to connect Bangayan to rice smuggling activities.
“For me it is enough to show that what they are doing is illegal,” she added.
Meanwhile, Sen. Jose Victor “ JV” Ejercito said the Aquino administration should stop rice smuggling once and for all.
“Is rice smuggling too lucrative to be stopped? We are aware that there is already something wrong with the system during the administration of the former president Gloria Arroyo, why did this government allowed it to continue?” Ejercito, chairman of the Senate economic affairs Committee, said.
He urged authorities to crack down on individuals and groups profiting from contraband goods.
“The public needs strong political will from the government against rice smuggling because only the government can put a rein on it,” he added.