Prosecution witness Vicente Sy, a convicted drug lord, has confirmed under oath that he has never met, much less gave money to opposition Senator Leila M. de Lima who is currently facing trumped-up conspiracy to commit illegal drug trading charges.
De Lima’s legal counsel, Atty. Boni Tacardon, said Sy contradicted his previous claims that he contributed money to fund De Lima’s 2016 senatorial campaign during the hearing earlier today (Nov. 6) in Criminal Case No. 17-165 at the Muntinlupa Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 205.
“Si Vicente Sy ay tumestigo noon at sinabi niya na nag-ambag daw siya ng halagang 500k para daw sa kampanya ni Senator De Lima noong 2012. Pero sa aming pagtatanong kanina, sinabi niya na kailanman ay hindi siya nagbigay ng pera kay Senator De Lima at sinabi rin niya na hindi niya kilala si De Lima,” he said.
Sy was one of the high profile inmates who lived lavishly at the National Penitentiary before then Justice Secretary De Lima led a raid and dismantled their luxurious kubols in 2014.
De Lima, the first prominent political prisoner under the Duterte regime, attended the hearings in Criminal Case Nos. 17-165 and 17-166 via teleconferencing from her detention quarters at the PNP Custodial Center in Camp Crame, Quezon City.
Also presented as prosecution witness in Criminal Case No. 17-165 was Public Attorney Office’s (PAO) lawyer Atty. Rigel Salvador who admitted that he had no personal knowledge of De Lima’s alleged involvement in the illegal drug trade inside the New Bilibid Prison (NBP).
According to Tacardon, Salvador said he only notarized Sebastian’s sworn statement implicating De Lima in the illegal drug trade inside the NBP, which the prosecution claimed was made by Sebastian just six days before he reportedly died of COVID-19 last July 18.
“Sa aming pagtatanong kay Atty. Salvador, inamin niya na hindi naman siya ang gumawa ng nasabing Salaysay ni Jaybee Sebastian at ang tangi niyang partisipasyon dito ay ang mag-notaryo lang. Pinatotoo niya na hindi niya alam ang laman nito at hindi niya alam kung lahat ng nakasaad dito ay totoo,” he said.
Moreover, Tacardon said that BuCor Officer Dennis Alfonso who was presented as witness by the prosecution in Criminal Case No. 166, confirmed that he did not discover anything that will implicate De Lima in the illegal drug trade inside the NBP when they conducted Oplan Galugad in 2016.
De Lima recently filed two separate and distinct Motions for Bail for both Conspiracy to Commit Illegal Drug Trading cases, asserting that the Prosecution’s evidence against her is not strong, and in fact confirms her innocence of the charges. These have been submitted for resolution. (30)