MANILA - Atty. Gigi Reyes, the controversial former chief of staff of embattled Senator Juan Ponce Enrile, has urged the Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) to lift the freeze order on her bank accounts and exclude the same from the forfeiture proceedings pending before the trial court.
In her plea filed with the Manila RTC Branch 22, Reyes pointed out that the contents of her bank accounts came from legitimate activities.
She also argued that state whistleblowers and witnesses in the "pork barrel scam," led by Benhur Luy, failed to prove that she pocketed kickbacks from Enrile's alleged transactions with Janet Lim Napoles, the alleged scam architect.
In a Provisional Asset Preservation Order (PAPO), dated June 6, Manila RTC Executive Judge Marino Dela Cruz, Jr. included Reyes' bank account in East West Bank, with deposits amounting to P511,522.40, and her bank account in Security Bank, with P6,700.92, in the accounts ordered frozen for a period of 20 days.
The trial court will hold hearings within this period, after which a ruling - either extending the freeze order or lifting it - will be handed down.
"Not one of these affiants attested of their own personal knowledge that herein respondent received any sum of money forming part of the [Priority Development Assistance Fund] of Senator Enrile. Their statements, apart from being vague, conclusory and lacking in any details as to time, date or place do not show that they were present or privy to the delivery, receipt and/or of my supposed acceptance of any funds constituting the PDAF of Senator Enrile," read Reyes' plea.
Reyes stressed that absent any proof implicating her in the "pork barrel" conspiracy, she should be spared from the forfeiture proceedings.
The Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) had filed two forfeiture cases with the Manila RTC against several persons charged for the multi-billion peso scam, including Napoles and members of her family, Napoles' former employees, Reyes, and several staff of implicated lawmakers.
Reyes and Enrile face plunder and graft charges in connection with the "pork barrel scam."