MANILA - The Office of the Ombudsman has opposed the motion that former Iloilo Representative Judy Syjuco filed in a bid to dismiss
graft and malversation cases against her for the alleged "ghost" acquisition of P6.25-million worth of mobile phones in December 2004.
Challenging the motion at the Sandiganbayan, prosecutors argued that Syjuco was wrong in alleging delays in proceedings on her case.
The Ombudsman said Syjuco's motion for dismissal should be denied because the fact-finding investigation and preliminary investigation stages were two different phases in proceedings on any given case.
"She incorrectly included the length of time that the fact-finding investigation was conducted by the Field Investigation Office of the Ombudsman," the prosecution said in its opposition.
Syjuco last month sought the dismissal of her cases before the Sandiganbayan 3rd Division citing inordinate delay, claiming that the Ombudsman took eight to nine years before filing the complaint at the Sandiganbayan.
The former lawmaker is facing graft and malversation through falsification of public documents before the Sandiganbayan 3rd Division for the allegedly questionable purchase of 1,582 units of Nokia 1100 worth P6.25 million in December 2004.
In its opposition, the prosecution noted that the complaint was received by the Ombudsman in the Visayas in 2006 and that it underwent fact-finding investigation before entering the preliminary investigation stage in 2013. The cases finally reached the Sandiganbayan in 2016.
The prosecution argued that "the fact-finding investigation period should not be considered in determining whether accused-movant's right to speedy disposition of cases has been violated."