Celebrity doc accuses ex-GF of P1.5M extort try
MANILA – Celebrity doctor Gary Sy on Wednesday denied beating up his former girlfriend, Nikki Lyn Upfold, and said the latter was trying to extort P1.5 million from him recently to drop the case she filed against him in 2012.
Sy, a former radio dzMM anchor and specialist in geriatric medicine, confirmed that he first met Upfold in a club in 2001. He said he again met her in Caesar’s Palace KTV in 2009 where the latter was working as a guest relations officer.
“Na in-love ako ng todo e,” he said.
The celebrity doctor said he and Upfold started living together at a condo unit in Mandaluyong starting February 2010. Right from the start of the relationship, he said Upfold was always asking for money since she had already stopped working.
“She was always asking for money for her mom or for her family. We had fights but it was never physical, just normal arguments,” he said.
Sy said Upfold had wanted to return to work, which he refused. Instead, he opened up a P1-million joint account at Security Bank in Mandaluyong so that they could open a Potdog franchise. Since they could not find a proper location, Sy said he just left the money in the account, not knowing that Upfold was already withdrawing the money little by little.
He said bank records would show that he never made a single withdrawal from the account.
According to Sy, he only found out about the missing cash after Upfold decided to visit her family in Tarlac on July 2011 and never returned. He said Upfold changed numbers and would later call him to say that she was already in Dubai.
“I told her: ‘Why did you leave suddenly without even saying that you weren’t going back?’” he said. He said Upfold was angry with him because “she thought I had no intention of marrying her.”
Sy, at that time, was already separated from his wife since 2001 but had only started the process of annulment in 2010. He confirmed that he had plans to marry Upfold and had even introduced her to his parents.
Reunion and 2nd breakup
Sy said that after Upfold left, he started dating another woman. However, he got back with Upfold after she called him up in October 2011 and asked for his forgiveness.
“I knew the P1 million was missing but I just chalked it up to experience. I even went to Dubai in November 2011 so I could see her and tell her that we would be okay,” he said.
Upfold returned to the Philippines in January 2012 and rekindled the relationship with Sy.
On March 6, 2012, Sy again opened an account for Upfold and transferred P598,641.00 from his account since she needed it as “show money” to apply for a visa to Korea. He said he also told the Korean embassy that Upfold was his fiancée.
After the Korea trip in April 2012, the two continued to stay together as a couple. Sy said he had already told his parents that he wanted to marry Upfold in November that year.
However, Sy said Upfold got into a Facebook fight with the woman that he had been dating while Upfold was in Dubai. He said Upfold wanted to sue the girl after the latter accused her of having surgery done.
“I didn’t want to get involved. She wanted to file a case and she wanted me to back her up. How could I do that?” he said.
He said the fight escalated to the point that Upfold started beating him with her hands. To stop the abuse, he said he held Upfold by the arms and did not let go until she calmed down.
“Hindi ko siya sinaktan. The next day, naghakot siya ng maleta but came back a couple of days later asking that she be allowed to return because she had nowhere to go,” he said.
Sy said Upfold had gone to the police to get a medico-legal report showing the bruises she sustained after their fight.
He said that while Upfold could have sustained bruises where he had held her, he did not know how Upfold could have sustained bruises on her legs.
The doctor said Upfold had first demanded P2 million or a condo in her name but he refused. He then gave her P300,000 which, she said, she needed to go back to Dubai.
“She also asked for another P50,000 for rent because she wanted to move out and needed money for her mother,” he recalled.
The celebrity doctor said he also received a notification on August 13, 2012 that his public Facebook account had been hacked and that all messages to the account would go to an email address owned by Upfold. Sy said he reported the hacking incident to the National Bureau of Investigation on September 3, 2012 so the FB account could be shut down quickly.
“I wanted to shut down the FB account because she could receive and send messages to people I know through the account. However, the NBI said we should ask Upfold to come to the agency and change the password,” he said.
Sy said the NBI sent Upfold an invitation, which the latter refused. Instead, Upfold filed a case against Sy for violating Republic Act 9262 or the Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004 on October 1, 2012.
Sy admitted that Upfold continued to send her text messages so that they could fix the problem. He said he sent a text message on July 11 this year in an effort to solve the problem and that Upfold agreed to meet on August 13.
It was during this meeting that Upfold and her lawyer allegedly demanded P1.5 million from him to drop the case. “Sinabi ko wag na,” he said, adding that he did not want to discuss money with Upfold.
He said Upfold later called him up in the office on September 9 and threatened to bring the case to the media to destroy his name if he did not give in to her demands.
Sy said the case has caused him undue distress especially since he has been in the medical profession for 20 years. He has also filed charges of estafa, perjury, libel, robbery, extortion, and contempt before courts in Mandaluyong, Manila and Quezon City against his former girlfriend.
“I just want to clear my name. True, I fell in love. It so happened that I fell in love with the wrong person,” he said.