Sandiganbayan denies Enrile’s plea to limit evidence in pre-trial order

Published July 18, 2019, 2:33 PM

by CJ Juntereal

By Czarina Nicole Ong Ki

The Sandiganbayan Third Division has junked the omnibus motion filed by former Senator Juan Ponce Enrile seeking to “limit the evidence on the alleged overt criminal acts to the acts described in the ‘Bill of Particulars.'”

Juan Ponce Enrile (MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)
Juan Ponce Enrile (MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

A bill of particulars is a detailed, written statement of charges or claims by the prosecution.

In his motion, Enrile cited Section 1(f) Rule 118 of the Rules of Court, which states that a pretrial conference should consider, among other things, “a fair and expeditious trial of the criminal and civil aspects of the case.”

Enrile said no pretrial order has been issued in his case. He likewise urged the court to resolve “at the earliest opportunity” his motion to produce the evidence in the possession of the prosecution.

In doing so, Enrile said that it would give him time “to study and consider the materials before trial is held.”

In denying the motion, the court said “Enrile’s trepidation on possible surprises during trial on the part of the prosecution is unfounded, as he is amply protected by the Rules on Pre-trial.”

During the pre-trial, the court said both the defense and prosecution will be given the chance to present the evidence which they intend to raise during the trial.

“Any evidence not presented or marked during the pre-trial conference shall not be admitted during the trial,” the court told Enrile.

The decision was written by Associate Justice Ronald Moreno with Presiding Justice Amparo Cabotaje-Tang and Associate Justice Bernelito Fernandez concurring.

Enrile is facing one plunder and 15 graft charges over the alleged misuse of his priority development assistance fund (PDAF), which he allegedly endorsed to the bogus non-government organizations (NGOs) owned by Janet Lim Napoles in exchange for kickbacks.

In 2015, the Supreme Court allowed him to post bail for the plunder charge out of humanitarian considerations.

Enrile is facing the charges together with Napoles and his former chief of staff, Jessica “Gigi” Reyes.

 
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