Morato goes under knife, wants arraignment moved

Posted at 10/25/2012 7:05 PM | Updated as of 10/26/2012 8:22 AM

MANILA - Former Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) board director Manuel L. Morato asked the Sandiganbayan to cancel anew his arraignment because of his recent heart surgery.

In a pleading, lawyer Dante Diaz said his 78-year-old client underwent a coronary artery bypass graft on October 22 at St. Luke’s in Quezon City. He was then transferred to the intensive care unit for “further close monitoring and medical evaluation.”

“It is most respectfully prayed that the motion be granted, and consequently, the arraignment of accused Morato be deferred, until such time his medical and physical condition warrant for such proceeding," Diaz said.

The arraignment was rescheduled the second time to October 29 from October 15.

Morato is one of the respondents in the plunder case filed by the Office of the Ombudsman in the alleged misuse of P366 million in PCSO funds.

The main respondent is former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who is now under hospital arrest.