Philippines Report

AMLC, PDEA showed no evidence implicating De Lima in drugs –lawyer

De Lima

A financial investigator from the Anti-Money Laundering Council and a digital forensic examiner from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency reaffirmed on Friday that Senator Leila De Lima was not involved in any suspicious transaction that would link her to the illegal drug trade inside the New Bilibid Prison, De Lima’s lawyer Bonni Tacardon said.

In a statement, Tacardon said AMLC financial investigator Artemio Baculi Jr. and PDEA digital forensic examiner Krystal Caseñas both affirmed under oath that they found no suspicious transactions between the senator and drug convicts.

“Kanina, pinresent si Mr. Artemio Baculi ng AMLC sa Criminal Case No. 165, at ang sabi nya, kahit naririnig niya sa mga usapan ang pangalan ni Senator De Lima, eh hindi niya kailanman inimbestigahan ang Senadora,” Tacardon said.

“Pinatotoo niya na walang transaction between Peter Co, Ronnie Dayan na kapwa akusado sa kasong ito, pati na rin kay Senator De Lima,” he added.

Earlier, Tacardon admitted that his investigation of individuals suspected to be involved in the Bilibid drug trade showed that no money flowed from the bank accounts that were the subject of his investigation to either De Lima or her co-accused Jose Adrian Dera.

Meanwhile, Caseñas revealed “very crucial information.”

“Napaka-importante ng sinabi niya kanina, napaamin kasi natin sya sa aming pagtatanong, na dun sa cellphone extraction report na inilabas ng PDEA sa pamamagitan ni Caseñas, walang nakalagay na may transaction si Jad Dera (De Lima’s co-accused) at si Senator De Lima relating to any drug transactions,” Tacardon said.

“Sa hawak nilang mga cellphone na sinasabing pagmamay-ari ng mga drug lords, wala kung saanman doon na nakalagay na si Senator De Lima ay naging parte ng isang drug transaction. Yun ang naging crucial kanina lalo na sariling mga testigo ng prosecution yung mga nandoon,” he added.

Meanwhile, Caseñas affidavit indicating that the cellphones she received from the Bureau of Corrections were Co’s property was stricken off by the court as this was only her opinion.

Tacardon also pointed out that Caseñas might have violated the Cybercrime Law when she examined Co’s phones without a proper warrant.

“Lumalabas na unauthorized examination ang ginawa sa mobile phones na sinasabing pagmamay-ari ni Peter Co dahil hindi sila kumuha ng cyber warrant required under RA 10175 o yung Cybercrime Prevention Act,” he said.

“Kapag hindi ka kumuha ng cyber warrant, any evidence recovered will be excluded and may even result in the examiner facing criminal and administrative liabilities,” he added.

De Lima, who remains detained over drug charges, recently filed two separate and distinct motions for bail both for conspiracy to commit illegal drug trading cases, asserting that the prosecution's evidence against her was not strong and confirmed her innocence of the charges.

Judge Liezel Aquiatan had yet to rule on both motions as of posting time. (GMA News)

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