Supreme Court clears Ferdinand Marcos heirs of ill-gotten charges

THE Supreme Court has junked the ill-gotten cases against the heirs and in-laws of the late President Ferdinand Marcos due to a lack of evidence, and took the Presidential Commission on Good Government and the Office of the Solicitor General to task for bungling the job.

The dismissed cases involved the alleged accumulation of P200 billion in ill-gotten wealth and the acquisition of media networks IBC-13, BBC-2 and RPN-9; the alleged use of De Soleil Apparel for dollar salting; and the alleged acquisition and operation of the bus company Pantranco North Express Inc.




The decision by then Associate Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, dated Feb. 8, 2012, was not released to the press. Sereno was named Chief Justice six months later, on Aug. 12, 2012.

Second Division Justices Arturo Brion, Martin Villarama Jr., Jose Portugal Perez and Bienvenido Reyes concurred with Sereno’s finding that the prosecutors failed to abide by the “best evidence rule,” putting in question the process used by the PCGG and OSG in the cases.

“Despite having the expansive resources of government, the members of the prosecution did not even bother to provide any reason whatsoever for their failure to present the original documents or the witnesses to support the government’s claims.

Even worse was presenting in evidence a photocopy of the TSN (transcript of stenographic notes) of the PCGG proceedings instead of the original, or a certified true copy of the original, which the prosecutors themselves should have had in their custody.

Such manner of legal practice deserves the reproof of this Court. We are constrained to call attention to this apparently serious failure to follow a most basic rule in law, given the special circumstances surrounding this case,” the decision read.

While the children of the former president – Imee Marcos-Manotoc, Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and Irene Marcos-Araneta – were defendants as compulsory heirs, their involvement in the cases was never established, the Court said.

“In fact, they were never mentioned by any of the witnesses presented. Neither did the documentary evidence pinpoint any specific involvement of the Marcos children,” the decision said.

The court also dismissed the case filed against Irene’s husband, businessman Gregorio Araneta III, due to a lack of evidence.

“In the matter of the spouses Irene Marcos and Gregorio Araneta III, the court similarly held that there was no testimonial or documentary evidence that supported petitioner’s allegations against the couple.

Again, petitioner failed to present the original documents that supposedly supported the allegations against them. Instead, it merely presented photocopies of documents that sought to prove how the Marcoses used the Potencianos as dummies in acquiring and operating the bus company Pantranco,” the decision said.

The Supreme Court also said that Imelda Romualdez Marcos and Ferdinand Jr., as executor and defendants in the case, should be protected and given due process.

The two should not be deprived of their right to protect and defend all the properties left by the former President, except if they waive this right in favor of the state, the Court said.

“Since the pending case before the Sandiganbayan survives the death of Ferdinand E. Marcos, it is imperative therefore that the estate be duly represented. The purpose behind this rule is the protection of the right to due process of every party to a litigation who may be affected by the intervening death.

The deceased litigant is himself protected, as he continues to be properly represented in the suit through the duly appointed legal representative of his estate. On that note, we take judicial notice of the probate proceedings regarding the will of Ferdinand E. Marcos.

In Republic of the Philippines v. Marcos II, we upheld the grant by the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of letters testamentary in solidum to Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr and Imelda Romualdez Marcos as executors of the last will and testament of the late Ferdinand E. Marcos,” the Supreme Court said.

“Unless the executors of the Marcos estate or heirs are ready to waive in favor of the state their right to defend or protect the estate or those properties found to be ill-gotten in their possession, control or ownership, then they may not be dropped as defendants in the civil case pending before the Sandiganbayan,” the decision added.




The Supreme Court affirmed the Sandiganbayan decision dated Dec. 5, 2005 that acknowledged the children of the late President as legitimate defendants in the case.

The Supreme Court also called on Malacanang to investigate the process by which prosecution handled the case.

“Let a copy of this Decision be furnished to the Office of the President so that it may look into the circumstances of this case and determine the liability, if any, of the lawyers of the Office of the Solicitor General and the Presidential Commission on Good Government in the manner by which this case was handled in the Sandiganbayan,” the Court said.

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5 thoughts on “Supreme Court clears Ferdinand Marcos heirs of ill-gotten charges

  • April 2, 2016 at 4:47 am
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    bakit hindi inilalabas itong court decesion na ito. i sugest that this be published daily newspapers in order to let the people . sinong may kagagan nito tapos sabihin magnanakawc pfm.

    Reply
  • April 2, 2016 at 4:50 am
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    Diyan nyo makita kung paano e manipolahin ng Aquino Gov’! Ang isipan ng mga mamamayan lalo na ang mga yellow armies niya! Pati supreme court ay gusto e manipula ang ilalas na bakita rungkol sa mga Marcos! YAN ANG SINASABI NI BOOM PANOT NA KINAKATAKUTAN NYANG MANALO SI DUTERTE AT BONGBONG!DAHIL LALABAS LAHAT NG BAHO AT TUTOONG ANYO NG PAMILYANG AQUINO COJUANGCO! KAYA NGA AS EARLY PALANG AY PINALAYAS NIYA NA SI KRIS AQUINO SA BANSA!HINDI KAYO MAKA LIGTAS SA PANININGIL NG SAMBAYANAN SA MGA KASALANAN NG PAMILYANG COJUANGCO AQUINO DURING MARTIAL LAW!DAHIL KAYO ANG TUTOONG SAKOT NG LIPUNAN!MGA LAHING INTSIK KAYO

    Reply
  • April 3, 2016 at 4:08 am
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    Jesus Christ, kahit sinong matagal na nanungkulan may maipunpundar.

    Reply
  • April 3, 2016 at 4:38 am
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    1986 EDSA uprising happened few days after the SNAP PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION. Its a political contest between MARCOS and AQUINO. That is and no other but a “POLITICAL POWER GRAB by the LP yellowtards.. This milestone of our political history was a pre -planned event where the Yellowtards under AQUINO side collaborated with different forces like the CPP/NPA and their communist front organizations and some business OLIGARCH and the Church hierarchies with businesses who seek tax reprieved from the effect of taxation reforms, the US who started hostile against Marcos after his 1982 US visit when the latter lambasted US of its fascist activity in the country during the Marcos regime through their bases , and the participation of the US-CIA funded small faction from the military or the RAM headed by then LTC GRINGO HONOSAN. The uprising was not for whatever reason but to benefit the AQUINOs to power and their LP enclaves.

    Reply
  • April 3, 2016 at 5:35 pm
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    Sa mga galit sa martial law siguro favor kayo na maging communist ang Philippines. Do you have any idea what a communist country is? Good example: north korea, ganito ba ang gusto nyo?

    Martial law was declaired due to the massive communist plot to distabilize Marcos government and to for Aquino to grab the power . Ganyan kataas ang ambisyon ng mga Aquino eversince, kya kahit na sa taksil na paraan gagawin nila.

    I was anti Marcos before, but now I know the real story, so Marcos was the victim here. And most of us were brainwashed big lies from aquinos who are really the traitors of our country.

    Reply

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