Sandiganbayan refuses to grant convicted Nueva Vizcaya mayor’s motion for a new trial

Published March 26, 2019, 12:01 PM

by AJ Siytangco

By Czarina Nicole Ong Ki

The Sandiganbayan Fifth Division has denied the request made by convicted Alfonso Castañeda Mayor Jerry Pasigian of Nueva Vizcaya to start a new trial on his graft and malversation case even though he has newly-discovered evidence.

Pasigian was earlier convicted of Section 3(e) of R.A. 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and Article 217 of the Revised Penal Code, otherwise known as Malversation of Public Funds or Property, due to the anomalous purchase of a vehicle back in 2009.

(MANILA BULLETIN)
(MANILA BULLETIN)

In his urgent motion for new trial, Pasigian submitted a copy of a letter he signed dated March 2, 2009, requesting the Sangguniang Bayan of Alfonso Castañeda “to appropriate certain amount for the purchase of four wheel drive vehicle.”

He likewise submitted an affidavit dated February 28, 2019 of a certain Gabriel Marcelo, a member of the Sangguniang Bayan in 2009, stating that the 2009 records of the Sangguniang Bayan were only discovered now because the same were transferred to the new municipal building between 2010 to 2011, particularly in a different area of the building.

Pasigian argued that the letter would justify the immediate need for the purchased vehicle, and that the authority given to him by the Sangguniang Bayan proves the regularity of the transaction.

However, the anti-graft court denied his motion for lack of merit. “The respective affidavits…both claim that the 2009 records of the Sangguniang Bayan were only discovered now because the same were transferred to the new municipal building between 2010 to 2011, particularly in a different area of the building,” the court ruled.

“In short, the 2009 records of the Sangguniang Bayan have always been stored in the new municipal building since 2010 or 2011. There is no indication in the records that the transfer of said records to the new municipal building was unknown to the public officer responsible in the safekeeping thereof,” it added.

Even if the letter and affidavit were admitted, the anti-graft court stressed that the judgment of conviction against him will not change.

The five-page resolution was penned by Associate Justice Maryann Corpus-Mañalac with the concurrence of Associate Justices Rafael Lagos and Maria Theresa Mendoza-Arcega.

In a decision dated December 6, 2018, Pasigian was sentenced to imprisonment of six years and one month minimum and 15 years maximum for his graft charge, as well as four years and five months of prison correcional as minimum and seven years and four months of prison mayor as maximum for his malversation charge.

He was also ordered to pay a fine of P453,214.19, which is the depreciated value of the vehicle he purchased.

On April 2009, Pasigian gave unwarranted benefits to Gilbert Arellano when he awarded him the contract for the purchase of one unit 2003 Nissan Patrol with plate number PCJ 777 in the amount of P1,350,000.

The purchase was done without public bidding, and Pasigian even registered the vehicle under his own name instead of the municipality. After his term ended on June 30, 2013, he failed to return the vehicle to the government.

 
CLICK HERE TO SIGN-UP
 

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

["news"]
[2111379,2814292,2534630,2485825,2408462,2358243,2358052,2344118,2339143,2047660,1998697,996820,995332,995948,995006,994327,994303,993947,993860,993770,993529,993383,993285,798318,3093229,3093223,3093218,3093211,3093205,3093200]