NBI arrests Bangayan for power pilferage

by Ira Pedrasa, ABS-CBNnews.com

Posted at Feb 03 2014 03:13 PM | Updated as of Feb 04 2014 02:35 AM

Alleged rice smuggling king now under custody of NBI

MANILA (2nd UPDATE) - Businessman Davidson Bangayan was placed under the custody of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) after a Caloocan court took the government's position that he is the same David Tan linked to rice smuggling.

He was arrested for a separate case of power pilferage filed by the Manila Electric Co. (Meralco), which pushed the Caloocan Regional Trial Court to issue an arrest warrant against a “David Tan” back in October 2013.

When news of his alleged links to rice smuggling came out, Bangayan personally went to the Department of Justice (DOJ) in January 2014 to clarify that he is not the David Tan tagged by several rice industry officials. The NBI then used the October 2013 arrest warrant to detain Bangayan.

Bangayan, thereafter, asked the court to strike out his name from the power pilferage complaint, insisting he is not the “David Tan” wanted in the case.

In an interview with ANC on Monday, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said they finally secured on Monday an amended arrest warrant.

“The issuing judge [of the October warrant] was not in court earlier, so we took up the matter with the executive judge. Given the additional evidence proving he is David Tan, an amended warrant was issued,” she said.

She said the same documents used by the judge were raised earlier on Monday by Senator Juan Ponce Enrile when he pushed that Bangayan be held in contempt.

After going through the NBI's procedures, Bangayan immediately went to the Manila Regional Trial Court to post the P40,000 bail.

His lawyer, Benito Salazar, said they can post bail at the Manila court as long as a subsequent release order will be sent to the Caloocan court.