MANILA - The Sandiganbayan 7th Division has allowed former First Gentleman Mike Arroyo to travel to Taiwan from August 25 to 28 and to Europe from September 10 to October 6, 2017.
Arroyo's motion was approved in open court, despite opposition from the prosecution.
The prosecution argued that the Sandiganbayan does not exercise jurisdiction over Taiwan and Europe. It said allowing Arroyo to travel may go against the conditions of his provisional liberty wherein he must make himself available to the court at all times.
“It is, therefore, imperative that he remains in this country to ensure that whenever his presence in court will be required, he can immediately present himself,” the prosecution said in its opposition.
Arroyo, along with former high-ranking police officials, is facing a graft case for the purchase of the Philippine National Police of his three choppers.
Arroyo will be travelling to Taipei in Taiwan and will be embarking on a three-country trip to Europe - Frankfurt and Munich Germany from September 10 to 25; Paris, France from September 25 to 30; and Madrid, Spain from September 30 to October 5.
He is expected to be back in Manila on October 6.
Arroyo did not specify in his motion the reasons for his Taiwan and Europe trips.
“Accused Arroyo has failed to demonstrate the urgency or necessity of his intended travel to these countries. In fact, his motion is utterly devoid of any reason why he wants to travel to these countries,” the prosecution added in their opposition.