MANILA - A sibling of embattled Commission on Elections Chief Andres Bautista on Monday revealed that he had at least $1.7 million in joint investments with the poll chief at one point.
Dr. Martin Bautista said he entered joined investments with Andres in the 1990s because he was impressed with the latter's business acumen. He said his brother asked for a loan of $25,000 in 1993 and settled the debt within a year after graduating from the prestigious Harvard Law School.
Martin, a gastroenterologist in Oklahoma, said Andres was able to grow their investments to $1.7 million between the 90s and 2000, the year he married Patricia. Around this time, Andres also practiced law in New York and Hong Kong, he said.
"Lumalago through the years so that noong nagpakasal sila, I already had $1.7 million in 2000... I can prove that. I still have the bank books, I have the expired certificates," Martin said.
"This happened long before my brother entered government service and long before he married Tish."
Martin said Andres was considered the "family treasurer" and continued to manage joint investments with his relatives after marrying Patricia.
The doctor however could not say the current value of their family investments because their bank passbooks and relevant documents were allegedly stolen by Patricia.
Patricia last week alleged that her husband of 17 years kept P1 billion in undeclared assets and kept dozens of accounts at different banks.
The Comelec chairman has denied the accusations, saying his estranged wife is engaging in a "demolition job" against him. He also accused Patricia of attempting to extort money from him and having an affair.
Martin said he sent two separate emails to Patricia, asking that she let him "explain part of what you think you have."
"She told me, she acknowledged the fact that ‘Martin, I understand that and I know that you have invested with my husband.’ Alam niya yun," he said.
"I repeated that, February or March, I did not get a response, which was strange and tragic because wala po kaming problema with Tisha. Wala kaming problema, but she refused to answer me, maybe upon the advice of her counsel, which I understand," he added.
Martin said their family is ready to face any investigation by Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).
"NBI, BIR, Secretary Aguirre, please rescue us. Ipakita niyo po sa amin na walang ninakaw ang kapatid ko. Wala pong tagong yaman dito," he said.
(Show the public that my brother stole nothing. There is no undeclared wealth here.)