Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Erap found guilty of plunder

While on my way to the office today, I heard the verdict. Former President Joseph Estrada was acquitted of the perjury charges against him, but was found guilty of plunder. His two other co-accused, Senator Jinggoy Estrada and Atty. Edward Serapio (who happens to be a former teacher of mine) was acquitted of the plunder charges.

In my opinion, the case is far from over. Should Erap decide to file a Motion for Reconsideration or appeal the case, I foresee that the case will drag on for several more years.

For Senator Jinggoy, life goes on. He may feel unfortunate that his father was found guilty, but he still has his career and his family to go back to.

For Atty. Serapio, however, the case is still far from over. Yes, he can go back home to his family who I'm sure will welcome him with open arms. But I'm not sure the legal profession will look at him kindly, having been dragged into the Erap controversy. With no legal career to fall back on, it's as good as finding him likewise guilty of the plunder charge. And with 6 years of his life spent behind bars, I do not foresee any company welcoming him with open arms. For him, convincing the public of his innocence is just about to start.

35 comments:

rhodora said...

I believe that Erap's case is all in the hands of the next presidency. Should one on his side be elected, he has high hopes for a reversed decision in his appeal.

Rey said...

I believe the ERAP camp will exhaust all the appeals and motions at their disposal and this can go on for years to come, just as this trial went on for years. Plus, they are comparing Erap now to Malaysian former DPM Anwar. I think a ploy to gain more sympathy for someone who is so used to play underdog in his movies.

snglguy said...

I agree with Rhoda, Erap will surely move heaven and earth to make sure that any of his sons or kumpares will make it to Malacanang in 2010. Di ba sabi ni tabatsoy eh, "wether wether lang yan"? :-D

Anonymous said...

ed serapio is a product of the Ateneo College of Law, sayang na lang ang mga brod niya kung wala siyang pupuntahan na law office.)

As for the family welcoming him back, he has my prayers. Being stuck in limbo for six (6) years is a little bit disconserting.

As for Jinggoy, may araw din siya. The pathetic trying hard bit actor was spared today.

ipanema said...

I was reading my feeds yesterday afternoon when the i read it. i am at least happy. i know this will come out. and rightfully so, yahoo news mentioned that in their AP article. he is going to appeal. ay sus!

ladybug said...

rhodora> I don't think the next president will have an impact on his appeal. In the instance that Erap decides to file the appeal directly with the Supreme Court (instead of filing a motion for reconsideration), then the current justices, majority of whom are appointed by the current administration, will decide on the case. We'll just have to wait and see.

ladybug said...

rey> Actually, mabilis na ngang na-desisyunan itong kaso ni Erap. Some cases can even drag on for at least a decade. I can understand that his supporters will do everything they can to gain sympathy for Erap. The thing is, will the sympathy campaign have an effect on the justices who will decide? True justice can only be achieved in the absence of prejudices and emotional involvement, both for or against the accused.

ladybug said...

snglguy> Ahahaha..."wether wether" lang talaga iyan. This case shall set a precedent for future generations to follow. The important question is, will the present administration be willing to face the consequences that this decision shall bring. If an Erap sympathizer makes it to Malacanang in 2010, I have a big hunch that members of the present administration will have to prepare for another plunder case, only when that time comes, the tables will be turned.

ladybug said...

anonymous> I'm sure his family is very happy now that he has been acquitted and can finally go back home. Sayang talaga si ed, considering that he was a bar topnotcher and the valedictorian of his class. Pasalamat ng malaki si Jinggoy at nakalusot siya.

ladybug said...

ipanema> Hahaha...mukhang matatagalan pa ito ipanema. Kung mag-aapila pa si Erap, mga ilang years pa ulit bago ito matatapos. Kumbaga sa marathon, nangangalahati pa lang ang laban.

rowena said...

Hi. As I've posted in my blog, yehey ako sa verdict na yan....He deserves it bwahaha. Sana next naman yung nakaupo ngayon na super corrupt din. Isama na rin mga congressmen and some senators na pork barrel-addicts...he he

kyels said...

I saw this case on television. Well, different countries have different political problems. It's never ending.

ipanema said...

naku, sana walang hocos pocus yan. :) Same story na naman siguro. Ayokong ma acquit sya noh. Saka yung mga babawiin, hala, ibenta agad!

myepinoy said...

Ako'y natutuwa lamang sa mga pahayag or comments nina jinggoy at sigeon reyna. Ang tanong nila after the decision, bakit yong bang pera sa jueteng ay pera ng bayan?

Totoo nga, kahit sa simpleng pananalita, ipinapaalam nila na totoo na involve sa jueteng si erap or talaga lang di sila nag-iisip ng maayos.

Ay naku, tapos na si erap ang hinihintay ko naman ay ang susunod sa kanya; hello garci, expensive high way at ang broadband of lies.

Hindi kaya ito ang dahilan kung bakit panay ang offer ng reconcilliation kasi ultimately magiging house este cellmate silang dalawa? nagtatanong lang. lol

vic said...

It's kind of hard to make out of the cases, too long to resolve and the main prosecution witness, who was also by his account as guilty as the deposed President was never charged of any crime. We should have expected Singson to be a state witness under a Plea Bargain for his own crimes for lesser charges and sentence, but getting out scotch free?
For the co-accused Atty. Serapio, being declared not guilty won't not put him in the same standing as he was before, unless he was declared innocent, in which case he could be be entitled to compensation. not guilty for insufficient evidence, unless maliciously charged (very hard to prove though) would be very hard for a once top-notch lawyer to regain back his reputation..

Mom said...

wow..just read about it today. Akala ko nga di mapupunta sa ganito ang case ni Erap. That's really good to know that justice is served (well, almost)

BW said...

I'm just curious as to how long this appeal will last. As in the case of Marcos, people lost track of what was going on with the case. I hope the administration put their due diligence to speed up the decision on the appeal before GMA's term expires.

ladybug said...

rowena> Some people who are against the present administration seem to have forgotten how Erap's government was run. Maikli yata ang memory ng mga Pinoy.

ladybug said...

kyels> Yep. No government is perfect. But I wonder how some nation can be so progressive while others seem unable to.

ladybug said...

ipanema> Nag-uumpisa na nga eh. Yung boracay mansions napunta na pala sa gobyerno ng qc dahil sa hindi pagbabayad ng may-ari ng taxes. Kaya mukhang mahihirapang kunin ng gobyerno ulit yun. For me, dapat mas superior ang rights ng national government. Dapat nga sa start ng case naglagay na sila ng lien sa title ng Boracay mansions para di na nakuha ng iba. Somebody made a mistake somewhere.

ladybug said...

myepinoy> I read the law again, the money doesn't have to come from the national treasury. Puwedeng mga kickbacks which were received by reason of the official's position in government. Kaya maghanda na yung mga kasunod....pumila na sila.

ladybug said...

vic> I really couldn't understand how singson could have escaped from it all unscathed. Even atong ang still has to serve time and return the money. Tsk tsk...
Re: serapio, I heard he's planning to sue the government. Unfortunately for him, there is only the "not guilty" sentence, no verdict of "innocence." It would be interesting to watch how this turns out.

ladybug said...

mom> Nako, di pa tapos ang kaso regarding Erap. Kalahati pa lang ng laban ito. Baka matisod pa sa final round.

ladybug said...

bw> I am looking at a scenario where Erap files a motion for reconsideration first with the Sandiganbayan, and wait for that decision, before eventually filing an appeal with the Supreme Court.

For the motion for reconsideration, I'm giving it only one year. I don't think the Sandiganbayan will sit on this matter for long. The subsequent appeal to the Supreme Court will probably take around 1-2 years.

I think the case will be decided with finality before GMA's term ends. This is just my opinion, of course. Hey, thanks for dropping by! Have a happy weekend!

snglguy said...

Nakupo! What happened to your template? Mukhang tinamaan ka rin ng problema sa blogspot. Bothe Ipanema and BW was affected din. Si BW, nag alsa balutan na at lumipat na sa wordpress. Baka it's time for you to make the switch na rin, hehe. :-D

ladybug said...

snglguy> Egad! What happened to my template???? Shuccckkkkssss!!!!!! Thanks for the information snglguy. Kung di mo sinabing affected din yung iba baka isipin ko na may hacker lang sa blog ko....hehehehe. I think in-house muna ang template ko bago ako mag-redesign....hehehehe. Hope you had a fun weekend.

Bugsybee said...

I was happy with the decision. This should serve as a fair warning to all corrupt government officials. I hope this will not be the first and the last. Let's show all plunderers and grafters that we can do it (i.e. punish them) if we want to.

Re Atty. Serapio ... his case reminds me of a friend who was maliciously accused of sexual harassment - at that time, he was one of the top officers of a big multinational corporation. The case dragged in court (I think 5 or 6 years too) and although he was not imprisoned, when he was finally acquitted, nobody would touch him with a 10-foot pole because of his "record". The irony is that one might be acquitted in court but it is the accusation that is remember by the public, not the acquittal. :(

ladybug said...

bugsybee> I fully agree with you there. This should serve as a warning to other corrupt public officials. Public office is a public trust. People who are appointed or elected to public official should always think of the public welfare first and foremost. Kung pansarili lang ang iniisip nila, hindi sila dapat umupo.

Sidney said...

I guess Erap will get a presidential pardon.
His son will continue in politics and the lawyer has probably some cash hidden away.
Some crooks have less luck in life.

ladybug said...

sidney> "Some crooks have less luck in life." Hahahaha....true true. I couldn't have said it more aptly.

Senor Enrique said...

I was at Plaza Miranda that morning hoping to get some shots of Erap's supporters' reaction to the verdict, but I didn't see anyone who cared enough even to look up Mercury Drug's giant monitor to check out the proceedings. Everyone was busily attending to their personal errands and business.

ladybug said...

eric> That's so sad. That was part of history and no one even bothered to watch it. Oh well, I guess people are starting to get de-sensitized again.

Anonymous said...

hi ladybug....just a minor correction...Atty Serapio has been out of custody for many years now and is one of the partners at a law firm in Ortigas Center...Marcos, Tan, Ochoa, Serapio. Prior to this, he maintained a law firm in QC area.

ladybug said...

anonymous> Thank you for this information.

Anonymous said...

no problem. just wanted to reiterate that atty serapio did not spend 6 years behind bars and that he re-established his law practice several years ago. btw, i dont think his colleagues in the legal profession have a bad impression of him because of the plunder case.