Justice Sec. Vitaliano Aguirre II said Friday they have deposit slips to bolster claims that millions of pesos went into the bank account of Ronnie Dayan, who President Rodrigo Duterte accused of collecting money for Sen. Leila de Lima from convicted drug lords inside the New Bilibid Prison.
“Meron akong mga hawak na ilang dokumento pa. May ilang deposit slips sa bangko ng milyun-milyon. Kaya di ko ‘yan pinapalabas dahil kami ay nagbi-build up pa lang ng kaso,” Aguirre said.
“Ayaw ko po munang i-discuss ‘yan hangga’t hindi ko pa na veri-verify ‘yan sapagkat ang pagka-release po niyan ay hindi po authorized. Hindi ko malaman kung paano nakakuha ang media but definitely it did not come from me. Wala po akong sinasabi tungkol diyan,” he added.
Aguirre previously admitted that the Department of Justice was still looking into how the bank account, which was not under De Lima’s name, could be linked to the senator’s alleged involvement in the illegal drug trade.
Two DOJ receiving clerks, identified as Jonathan “Jong” Caranto and Edna “Bogs” Obuyes, earlier executed affidavits stating that De Lima asked them to deposit millions of pesos into a bank account under Dayan’s name.
De Lima did not deny that Caranto, who is said to be a distant relative of Dayan, and Obuyes were her former staff but claimed that the employees were coerced to execute affidavits in a bid to pin her down.
“The alleged existence of accounts, that is a fabrication. I don’t think those two would have those accounts, instant millionaires nga sila,” De Lima said on Thursday.
De Lima also hinted of filing charges over what she claimed were supposed fabrication of evidence and coercion of witnesses to link her to illegal drug operations.
She also suspected the reports on supposed financial transactions were connected to the planned investigation of the House of Representatives on the alleged proliferation of drugs inside the national penitentiary during her five-year stint as DOJ chief.
Both De Lima and Dayan figured in Duterte’s drug matrix that supposedly detailed the network of government officials and suspected drug lords.
The senator has repeatedly denied the allegation which she believed came after she led an ongoing Senate investigation into the Duterte administration’s war on drugs.
She also rebuffed calls from Duterte to resign, saying doing so would be a sign of guilt and weakness. (MNS)