By Czarina Nicole Ong-Ki
The Sandiganbayan Fourth Division has granted the motion for issuance of subpoena duces tecum of former Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) chief Prospero Pichay Jr. in his three graft charges and bank violation charge in relation to the questionable purchase of Express Savings Bank Inc. (ESBI) way back in March 24, 2009.
He was slapped with three violations of Section 3(e) of R.A. 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and X126.2(c)(1)(2) of The Manual of Regulation for Banks in relation to Section 36 and 37 of R.A. 7653.
In his motion, Pichay prayed for the subpoena, directing the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corporation (PDIC) to produce documents that were “all relevant to his defense.”
These include the LWUA deposit of P300 million in its savings account with ESBI, and the capital infusion in the amount of P400 million in favor of ESBI as advance payment for stock subscription.
The anti-graft court granted Pichay’s motion over the objection of the prosecution because “he has shown good cause therefor.”
“Precisely, the documents requested in the motion may indeed be in the custody of the PDIC in view of the liquidation proceedings filed by the latter with another court. Considering the foregoing, accused Pichay should not be deprived of his right ‘to have compulsory process issued to secure the xxx production of other evidence in his behalf’ at this stage of the proceedings,” the court ruled.
The subpoena was addressed to the legal department of the PDIC. They were required to produce before the court the Motion for Approval of Project Distribution, the Project Distribution Assets of ESBI, the Statement of Affairs/Condition of ESBI, the Notice of Claim submitted by the LWUA, the order issued by the liquidation court approving the Project of Distribution showing the amount of receivable due from PDIC to LWUA, and any other document or pleading showing the amount that LWUA recognized as its full and final claim against PDIC as liquidator.
The four-page resolution was penned by Chairperson Alex Quiroz with the concurrence of Associate Justices Reynaldo Cruz and Edgardo Caldona.