'Alleged Napoles meet with NBI execs disturbing'

Posted at 03/19/2014 6:03 PM

MANILA - National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) director Virgilio Mendez said the allegation that two NBI officials met with alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles last year is "very disturbing."

"This is very disturbing. So we want to have the information on this," he said.

Mendez, however, refused to speculate on the matter at this time.

He said he has given the ad hoc committee a month to investigate the alleged meeting.

Former NBI deputy directors Reynaldo Esmeralda and Ruel Lasala have claimed that the first meeting between the officials and Napoles occurred on May 23, 2013. This was allegedly followed by another one.

They declined to identify the officials, and said they will only divulge all they know during the NBI ad hoc committee investigation.

Esmeralda and Lasala were sacked last week for allegedly leaking information on the arrest of Napoles.

Both denied the allegation against them, and claimed that two other NBI officials had met with the businesswoman.

Justice Secretary Leila de Lima earlier said she recommended the relief of Esmeralda and Lasala due to "integrity and trust issues." -- With report from Zyann Ambrosio, ABS-CBN News; ANC