Trillanes, Gordon clash on Paolo Duterte’s links with alleged Davao Group
Senator Antonio Trillanes IV has nailed down the links of the notorious “Davao Group” to presidential son, Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte, based on new testimony given by customs broker Mark Taguba.
In his testimony before the Senate blue ribbon committee on the smuggling of P6.4-billion worth of shabu from China on Tuesday, Taguba revealed that he has been giving money to the group through a certain “Small” and “Jack.”
Taguba went on to identify Small, through pictures presented by Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV, as allegedly Davao City councilor Nilo Abellera Jr., a friend of Paolo
“Sa akin maliwanag ito, hindi na ito hearsay, directly sya nakikipag ugnayan kay Small Abellera na kilala na kaibigan ni Duterte and pinakita natin yung mga pictures dun. So the connection is very clear. Tapos nagbigay pa sya ng P5 million parang goodwill money so meron ng money changing hands,” said Trillanes.
“Antayin natin sa susunod na hearing pag lumabas itong si Abellera, we will solidify those links. Huwag na tayong tayong mag bulag bulagan. He was giving goodwill money because malakas nga yung Davao Group at sinasabi na si Paolo Duterte ‘yun so sya (Taguba) has no reason to believe na hindi nga si Paolo Duterte (yung backer),” said Trillanes.
But Senator Richard Gordon came to the defense of Paolo by insisting that the Senate first hear the testimony of Abellera before making any conclusions.
“I need to hear everything. Wala akong sinasabi kung malabo o malinaw (yung involvement ni Paolo Duterte). Hindi naman klaro. Umabot lang tayo kay Abellera,” said Gordon.
Trillanes was confident that Abellera would show the presidential son’s links to the Davao Group which has controlled smuggling operations in BOC since President Rodrigo took over.