Palace on Enrile's bail plea: It's up to the Sandiganbayan
MANILA - Malacañang is leaving it up to the Sandiganbayan to decide if Senator Juan Ponce Enrile should be granted bail in connection with the plunder and graft cases he is facing over the multibillion-peso pork barrel scam.
In an interview with Radyo ng Bayan on Saturday, deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte refused to comment on Enrile's petition for bail.
"It will be up to the division hearing his case on how to consider the factors that he has raised, mainly based on his age and on his health... It will be up to the court to determine kung kakatigan po 'yung kanyang mga sinususog na basehan," she said.
The 90-year-old Enrile, who is facing a plunder case and 15 graft cases, on Friday asked the anti-graft court that he be granted bail.
He cited his "poor and frail physical condition requiring constant medical attention."
He also said he is "not a flight risk."
Meanwhile, Valte said Enrile as well as the two other senators facing plunder and graft charges -- Jinggoy Estrada and Ramon "Bong" Revilla -- are free to file a motion on where they would prefer to be detained when arrest warrants are issued against them.
"Pwede po silang mag-file ng kanilang mosyon. Wala pong makakapigil sa kanila," she said.
"Ngunit ang korte po talaga 'yung nagbibigay ng lugar kung saan po sila dapat ma-detain."
According to the Palace official, it may take some time before the Sandiganbayan issues warrants of arrest against the respondents, citing the "voluminous documents" submitted by the Office of the Ombudsman.
"Hindi lang po 'yun komplikado but the sheer volume nung mga dokumento... Hindi ho tayo magugulat na they will need some time," Valte said.