Manila Yacht Club denies Napoles used yachts

From a report by Niko Baua, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 28 2013 11:33 PM | Updated as of Aug 29 2013 10:20 AM

MANILA -- The Manila Yacht Club denies three yachts supposedly owned by businesswoman Janet Lim Napoles have gone missing.

It was reported that Napoles may have escaped on board one of the yachts weeks ago.

Manila Yacht Club Commodore Willy Soong said neither Napoles nor her brother, Reynald Lim, is a member of the Manila Yacht Club.

"Walang record na may mga yate na umalis dito noong mga araw na yon," he added.

Speaking to ANC, Napoles' lawyer Lorna Kapunan also denied that her client owns yachts or even a private plane.

"I think the bounty stems from misinformation provided by the whistleblowers that Mrs. Napoles has means to escape, that she has three yachts. That is an absolute lie," Kapunan said.

It was on August 16 when agents of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) went to the Manila Yacht Club after being tipped off that Napoles had boarded a yacht to escape.

"Hindi naman napatunayan na nakasakay siya doon," said Cecilio Zamora, spokesman of NBI.

Soong also said, "Napakalaking operation yon, kailangan may magdadala sa kanya ng krudo."

Neighboring countries have already been alerted although authorities believe Napoles is still in the Philippines.