Whistleblowers to testify in Revilla bail hearing

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Pork scam whistleblowers Benhur Luy, Marina Sula and Merlina Suñas are expected to testify today in the bail hearing of Sen. Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. at the Sandiganbayan’s First Division.

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The three witnesses’ turn will come after the defense cross-examines the witnesses from a previous bail hearing—state auditor Susan Garcia and two directors from the Department of Budget and Management, Carmencita Delantar and Lorenzo Drapete.

But alleged pork scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles will not be there to hear what Luy, the prime whistleblower, will say.

In a chance interview on Tuesday, Napoles’ lawyer Stephen David told reporters that although Janet Lim-Napoles wants to attend hearings, she will not go tomorrow as she is “cognizant” of the cost of her travel from the detention facility to the court.

But she will come to her arraignment on Friday over graft charges at the court’s Third Division, which handles the plunder and graft cases against Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile and his co-accused in connection with the pork barrel scam.

Napoles has also expressed that she will not attend the trials in the division unless the court requires her presence.

In a manifestation filed in the court’s Third Division on Tuesday, she said she “understands the expenses” of the government for her security and in transporting her from her detention facility in Laguna to the anti-graft court.

“Hence, she decided to waive her right to be present during the pre-trial and trial of the subject cases so the government may use the resources intended for her security and trip to more important government expenses that need to be addressed too,” it read.

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