MANILA (UPDATE) – Former Caloocan Mayor and Rep. Enrico “Recom” Echiverri on Thursday was ordered arrested while he was at the Sandiganbayan for graft charges.
Echiverri, along with former city accountant Edna Centeno and city budget officer Jesusa Garcia, had been indicted for graft over allegedly anomalous P4.7 million worth of drainage projects in 2011.
Echiverri was at the Sandiganbayan to attend a hearing on his urgent motion to dismiss the charges when the arrest warrant, issued by the anti-graft court's third division on March 10, was served on him.
He paid a P15,000 bail, which was originally set at P30,000.
The allegedly anomalous projects involved the P2.7 million contract to E.V. & E Construction (EVEC) for the improvement of the drainage system of Molave Street in Pleasantview Subdivision, and P1.9 million contract awarded to Golden 3T Construction for the improvement of the drainage system along Saplungan St.
The Commission on Audit (COA) reported several irregularities in the projects such as lack of specific appropriation ordinance and approval by the Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP).
In October 2013, the COA also issued a Notice of Disallowance.
In indicting Echiverri and the two officials, Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales earlier said, "without authority from the SP, Echiverri entered into a contract with EVEC which constituted an unwarranted benefit and privilege granted to a private party."
Echeverri has yet to post bail for the graft case in a separate Sandiganbayan division involving the contract awarded to EVEC. – with a report Jon Ibanez, dzMM