Jeane Napoles stops selling Ritz Carlton unit
LOS ANGELES - A controversial piece of American real estate linked to the daughter of alleged pork scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles is no longer for sale.
Newly acquired MLS documents showed that Jeane Napoles' Ritz Carlton unit was withdrawn on September 23rd shortly after the listing appeared on several websites.
An ABS-CBN report earlier said the 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom unit, which covers over 1,500 square feet, was being sold for $1.475 million.
US-based anti-pork barrel activists believe public pressure as well as the freeze on the older Napoles' assets ultimately led to the withdrawal.
"Legal notice has been served to them and there's also a caveat or warning to prospective buyers that these properties are basically acquired through illegal methods. That is why if they buy it, they will be in the quandary," said Arturo Garcia of the US Action Against Pork Barrel (USAAP).
Napoles, who has been implicated in the P10-billion pork barrel and Malampaya fund scandals, earlier confirmed that she bought the Ritz Carlton unit in Los Angeles for her daughter as a reward for doing good in school.
Other US properties owned by the Napoles family include the Anaheim Express Inn valued at about $7 million, a $1.4 million home in the affluent Canyon View gated community in Irvine and a commercial property in the Los Angeles County City of Covina.
USAAP members have attempted to block the sale of Napoles' US assets as they explore the possibility of filing civil money laundering charges against Janet Napoles.
Jeane, her daughter, was accused of tax evasion recently.
Garcia believes with the Ritz Carlton home no longer on the market, it can eventually make recovery of the alleged ill-gotten wealth easier.
"Although the process has been slow, the Philippine government has learned valuable lessons from the Marcos properties that's why there will be a lot of money that can be recovered for the good of the people," he said.
Sources said Jeane Napoles had vacated the home, taking her belongings, around late August. Her whereabouts remain unknown.
Sources said a Filipino couple appears to be staying at the unit which remains under Jeane's name.
In the meantime, arrangements are being made to get Janet, who is currently in custody on illegal detention charges, to testify on the pork scam.
USAAP hopes other members of the Napoles clan can also shed light on the alleged scheme that involved transferring lawmakers pork funds into bogus organizations.
Documents show that there has been no movement or attempts to sell the three other Napoles properties in the US, which include an Anaheim hotel, an Irvine residence, and a commercial property in Covina.