Sandiganbayan orders forfeiture of retired police general’s assets

Published July 15, 2019, 4:02 PM

by Dr. Eduardo Gonzales

By Czarina Ong-Ki

The Sandiganbayan Seventh Division has ordered the forfeiture of several assets of former Police General Danilo Mangila, ranging from several parcels of land, vehicles, and over P15 million worth of unexplained wealth.

Sandiganbayan (MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)
Sandiganbayan (MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

The retired police official, who is the former head of the PNP’s Traffic Management Group and Assistant Secretary of the Presidential Anti-Smuggling Group, is facing a civil forfeiture case filed by the Office of the Ombudsman pursuant to R.A. 1379, otherwise known as An Act Declaring Forfeiture in Favor of the State Any Property Found to have been Unlawfully Acquired by any Public Officer or Employee.

Mangila allegedly acquired properties manifestly out of proportion to his salary and to his other lawful income.

During the trial, the court checked his income from 1991 to 2004, and it showed that Mangila received a yearly income ranging from P99,000 to P365,022.

But during this time, he was able to purchase six parcels of land, 16 motor vehicles, and other properties equivalent to P15,806,403.65. Mangila also made several foreign trips.

Mangila travelled abroad 18 times from 1994 to 2005, while his wife travelled 16 times from 1993 to 2005. They went to Tokyo, Osaka, Hong Kong, Singapore, France, Honolulu, Seoul, Australia, Los Angeles, and Nagoya.

However, Mangila failed to adduce evidence explaining where he got the money to finance these multiple foreign travels.

Mangila also defended himself by saying that the funds he used to acquire the questioned properties came from his lawful income as a public official. He also said that he has other financial sources from where he got the properties, and he even indicated these in his statement of assets liabilities and net worth (SALN) for the years 1999 to 2003.

These financial sources are businesses that included Nine-O-Nine Transport Services, SP 2000 Restaurant Videoke, Car Merchant Buy and Sell, and real estate businesses.

Mangila further negated the claims against him by saying that his family members – his wife and children – contributed money to purchase the real properties declared under his name.

However, the Sandiganbayan justices did not believe him. “Clearly, his assertions to this effect were not fully substantiated, making the Court to wonder where did he get the money to acquire all these properties,” the decision read.

“Couched differently, his income even when added together, to the Court’s mind, is not sufficient for him to acquire these properties nor to finance his numerous foreign travels to include that of his wife, which undeniably entail lots of expenses,” it added.

To the mind of the court, it is safe to say that the assets acquired by Mangila and his expenses are not “commensurate” to what he has earned or received from his salaries, allowances, or business interests.

The 53-page decision was written by Associate Justice Georgina Hidalgo with the concurrence of Chairperson Ma. Theresa Dolores Gomez-Estoesta and Associate Justice Zaldy Trespeses.

 
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