Court OKs GMA's hospital arrest, sets conditions

By Ira Pedrasa,

Posted at Oct 17 2012 11:19 AM | Updated as of Oct 17 2012 09:38 PM

Arroyo to pay for hospital stay

Media interviews to be cleared by court

MANILA, Philippines - The Sandiganbayan has approved the hospital arrest of former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, but with conditions.

In an eight-page ruling issued today, the first division of the anti-graft court implemented five conditions for Arroyo’s continued hospital arrest at the Veterans’ Memorial Medical Center (VMMC).

The court specifically ordered Arroyo to pay all expenses for her confinement and medication.

Her use of cell phones, Internet and other forms of technology shall first be approved by the Police Security and Protection Group.

The court also said the Philippine National Police will have “full control over visitors.” She will also not be able to grant media interviews until the court gives clearance.

The court said she will remain at the VMMC “until further orders of the court.”

The court earlier said there is probable cause to indict Arroyo for plunder in connection with the alleged misuse of P366 million in Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) funds.

Meanwhile, the court also held off any ruling in connection with her medical exam at the Philippine Heart Center.

The pleas of the other accused, PCSO former officials Manuel Morato, Rosario Uriarte and former Commission on Audit chief Reynaldo Villar, were junked for mootness. They asked that the court quash the findings of probable cause.