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Sandigan denies ex-PCGG chair Sabio motion to dismiss

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by Allan Yves Briones

The Sandiganbayan 2nd Division denied Wednesday the motion to dismiss filed by former Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) chair Camilo Sabio, calling it “unwarranted.”

“Wherefore, premises considered, the Motion to Dismiss Information dated August 24, 2019, filed by Camilo Loyola Sabio, through counsel, is hereby denied,” the court stated in a resolution.

In his motion, Sabio invoked prescription – that the cash advances he was being charged for were obtained in 2008, and the allowable period for him to be taken to court is four years.

However, the court believed otherwise, turning to the Revised Penal Code.

Article 90 of the Code prescribes that offense punishable by a “correctional penalty”, which is the case with Sabio’s pending Failure of Accountable Officer to Render Accounts charge, has a prescriptive period of 10 years.

“Hence, from the date of alleged commission of the crime in March 2009 to the filing of the Information in 2008, the ten (10) years prescriptive period has not yet expired,” the court said.

Sabio also argued there was double jeopardy since he was previously released from a malversation charge before the anti-graft court’s 5th Division.

To which, the court responded that the rule would not apply since the elements of the two offenses are different from each other.

Last September 11, the Supreme Court upheld Sabio’s conviction for the P12.66 million lease of vehicles without public bidding.

PCGG is the government agency tasked with recovering billions of dollars allegedly plundered by the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos.

Division Chairperson Oscar Herrera, Jr. wrote the resolution, concurred by Associate Justices Michael Frederick Musngi and Lorifel Pahimna. #

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