No Ombudsman reso acquitting GMA: prosecutor
MANILA Philippines – There is no Ombudsman resolution acquitting former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in the plunder case over the alleged misuse of Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) funds, the lead prosecutor in the case said Monday.
Lead government prosecutor Diosdado Calonge said what exists is an initial recommendation by the panel for a lower offense of technical malversation and violation of anti-graft laws, instead of plunder.
He said the evidence was deemed more appropriate for plunder charges after a review by Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales.
He said Ombudsman Morales has the sole authority to decide what cases should be filed against any accused and the findings of the panel are merely recommendations subject for review.
Former president Arroyo remains in detention after the Sandiganbayan denied the supplemental motion to reconsider the arrest warrant filed today by Arroyo's lawyer, Atty Anacleto Diaz.
Diaz said their next option might be to file a petition for bail since they believe the evidence in the case is weak.
The lawyer said the Sandiganbayan 1st Division will set a date for Arroyo's arraignment in the next few days.