MANILA, Philippines – Senior Deputy State Prosecutor Silverio Gana on Friday said he was surprised and saddened by the arrest of his chief of staff for alleged extortion last August 31.
In a statement, Gana said his chief of staff, Mutya Santiago, has been under his employ for the past 12 years at the Department of Justice.
He said that to his knowledge, Santiago has never been involved in any anomaly in the performance of her duties.
“I would like to assure the public that I will not tolerate any wrongdoing of my staff, if there is indeed truth to that matter. Let the wheels of justice take its regular course to prove the guilt or innocence of Ms. Santiago,” he said.
Santiago was arrested in an entrapment operation conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation right inside her office at the DOJ building. The NBI said Santiago allegedly demanded money from former Binibining Pilipinas titleholder Nuriza Abeja in exchange for a favorable decision on her case, which was pending with Gana’s office.
Abeja later asked for help from Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, who ordered the NBI to help her.