Globe Asiatique execs face syndicated estafa raps

By Ina Reformina, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 29 2010 01:13 PM | Updated as of Oct 30 2010 12:15 AM

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) - Charges of syndicated estafa were filed on Friday by the Pag-IBIG Fund and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) against 16 officers and employees of Globe Asiatique Realty Holdings Corp (GA) and Pag-IBIG over a housing loan mess.

The criminal cases arose from the investigation of Pag-IBIG, formally called Home Development Mutual Fund, on the alleged bogus loans of its members who bought houses in GA's Xevera housing project in Pampanga. The syndicated estafa cases constitute economic sabotage. 

Charged at the Department of Justice (DOJ) for this non-bailable offense are

  • Delfin Lee, GA board chairman
  • Dexter Lee, GA Executive Vice-president
  • Cristina Salagan, chief finance officer, treasurer and board member
  • Christina Sagun, heads of the company's Accounting/Finance Department and Documentation Department

The following GA employees/agents are included in the suit for soliciting and allegedly paying off "special Buyers" and/or creating "ghost borrowers":

  • Lerma Vitug
  • Tintin Fonclara
  • Geraldine Fonclara
  • Revelyn Reyes
  • Atty. Rod Macaspac
  • Marvin Arevalo
  • Joan Borbon
  • Christian Cruz
  • Rodolfo Malabanan
  • Nannet Haguiling
  • Hon Tungol

An employee of Pag-IBIG's Legal Department, Atty. Alex Alvarez, was also charged for notarizing majority of the fake and/or fraudulent loans submitted by GA to Pag-IBIG.

Alvarez reportedly admitted to the NBI that he received a monthly salary of P30,000 from GA "in exchange for notarizing its documents without the need for the borrowers to personally appear before him as the documents are brought to him for such notarization in batches.

"In securing funding for the Xevera Projects... the respondents actually conspired with each other, with malice and evident bad faith, by willfully and feloniously employing a grand fraudulent scheme to deceive HDMF into releasing the aggregate amount of at least P6,653,546,000 directly to Globe Asiatique, to the damage and prejudice of HDMF and its contributing members," the complaint said.

The complaint further said Lee made false representations, submitted falsified documents (such as ID, ITRs, birth certificates, TINs) allegedly manufactured by GA as supporting documents for the loan applications, and paid for the immediate Pag-IBIG membership of these fictitious and fraudulent buyers for them to qualify for loans.

Pag-IBIG claims that in order for GA to induce the mutual fund to release more funds to pay for the housing units supposedly acquired by these individuals, Lee paid the amortizations of the non-existent borrowers in order not to alert Pag-IBIG to the scheme.

300 affidavits obtained

The NBI said it was able to obtain some 300 affidavits confirming that Lee, through GA, "was actually engaged in a grand fraudulent scheme to swindle Pag-IBIG of its funds, which funds are contributions solicited from its members and the public in general."

During the investigation conducted by Pag-IBIG and the anti-graft division of the NBI, its was found that some units taken-out by PAG-IBIG through these loans, were actually occupied by 3rd parties or buyers who brought directly from GA.

Pag-IBIG said, "More shocking is the fact that of the randomly sampled 20 units taken out by Pag-IBIG that are occupied by 3rd parties, 16 properties are being occpuied by in-house buyers (buyers who bought directly from GA without loaning from HDMF, 2 of whom have fully paid their purchase to GA), 3 units are leased out by parties other than the Pag-IBIG borrowers, and 1 is being occupied by a replacement borrower."

Again, in a post-take-out validation, it was revealed that at least 644 of borrowers endorsed by GA were not genuine buyers of Xevera homes.

At least 802 of the borrowers cannot be located, 3 are actually deceased, and 275 were not around during the visit, all of whom are presumed to be totally fictitious buyers, Pag-IBIG said.

This case carries with it a penalty of life imprisonment.