MANILA, Philippines - Legacy scam victims on Friday protested the police's apparent special treatment for scam mastermind Celso de los Angeles.
Philip Piccio, president of the Parents Enabling Parents Coalition, said police should put De Los Angeles inside the detention cell in Camp Caringal with other suspected common criminals.
This was after radio dzMM reporter Dennis Datu discovered that De Los Angeles was not actually in jail.
Datu reported that De Los Angeles was inside the police camp's warrant section. He said the Legacy scam mastermind even has a bed of his own inside the warrant section.
The radio dzMM reporter said he tried to get an interview with De Los Angeles, but he declined.
De Los Angeles was taken by police from the St. Luke's Medical Center and transferred him to Camp Caringal on Tuesday.
The Legacy scam mastermind was taken from the hospital after the Ormoc City Regional Trial Court issued a new warrant of arrest against him.
The arrest warrant stemmed from a syndicated estafa case filed by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) before the Department of Justice, involving over P480 million funds deposited in First Interstate Bank in Leyte that were allegedly swindled by the Legacy Group.
Elmer Galacio, BSP's legal counsel, said De los Angeles was detained at the Catherdral Heights building inside the St. Luke's hospital compound by virtue of a separate arrest order issued by a local court in General Santos City.
"This only highlights the pervasiveness of the defraudation that was employed by the Legacy syndicate. The order allowing him to stay in Cathedral Heights emanated from the RTC of GenSan. That case involves an approximately P1-billion misappropriation... The warrant of arrest today is totally different from the warrant issued by the GenSan court," said Galacio.
De los Angeles, a businessman turned Albay politician, is the owner of the collapsed Legacy Group of Companies.
Along with other Legacy officials, he faces a string of estafa cases for deceiving investors in 13 rural banks and pre-need companies via double-your-money schemes.
Reports say he was able to siphon off funds worth P30 billion. – Report from Dennis Datu, radio dzMM