MANILA – Senator Leila de Lima received millions from high-profile Bilibid inmate Jaybee Sebastian when she was still justice secretary, a witness claimed Tuesday.
De Lima is now at the center of a probe into the alleged proliferation of illegal drugs at the national penitentiary during her stint as justice secretary.
The first witness presented by the Department of Justice, kidnap convict Rodolfo Magleo, claimed De Lima got millions from Sebastian in exchange for giving special treatment and various privileges to the latter.
Magleo claimed that one of the biggest favors De Lima gave to Magleo was the transfer of the group of high-profile inmates called the “Bilibid 19” to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) headquarters after authorities discovered various contraband items at the maximum security compound.
He said, the real reason the Bilibid 19 inmates were transferred to the NBI was for Sebastian to monopolize the drug trade at the Bilibid.
“Si Jaybee Sebastian ay naging successful sa plan to centralize the drug trade inside the maximum security compound for eight months. December 2014 sila na-transfer, naghari siya ng eight months [They were transferred in December 2014 and Sebastian reigned for 8 months],” Magleo said.
“Dino-diyos na siya (Sebastian), dahil natatakot ayaw ma-transfer. Iyung lahat ng mga sumusuway malayo ang napupuntahan, Building 14, kolonya.”
[Everyone was treating Sebastian like a God. Anyone who would dare go against his wishes would be sent far away, to Building 14 or the colony.]
Magleo said, Sebastian had to give a one-time payment of P10 million and subsequent monthly payment of P1 million to De Lima for the Bilibid 19’s transfer.
To prove De Lima and Sebastian’s closeness, Magleo claimed that the two once spent about 2-3 hours inside the inmate’s “kubol.”
“Siya eh na-invite niya si Sec. De Lima sa kanyang White House, bungalow niya. For me, it is something abnormal,” Magleo said.
According to Magleo, he learned of this supposed real reason straight from Sebastian.
“Sinabi niya sa akin, on the night before the transfer, ‘Sir tingnan mo ang mangyayari sa madaling araw. Mawawala na rito ang mga mayayabang, iyang mga lumalaking ulo, mga sagabal sa buhay ko,’” he said.
‘DE LIMA’S LOVER’
Magleo also claimed that De Lima’s driver and alleged lover also had a role in the illicit drug trade at the national penitentiary.
He said that he met Dayan in mid-2011 when the latter and De Lima paid a visit to Bilibid to meet with him and three other inmate-leaders.
Magleo said he and fellow inmate-leaders exchanged numbers with Dayan and De Lima. He claimed that after this, Dayan required them to turn over at least P50,000 in drug money.
However, Magleo said he and another fellow inmate were not able to meet the quota, resulting in their removal as Bilibid leaders.
Magleo said “he could sense” that something intimate was happening between De Lima and Dayan.
According to Magleo, De Lima’s appointment as justice secretary worsened the drug trade in Bilibid.
“2004 nasa maximum na ako, so na-observe ko lahat ang sitwasyon doon. Bago maging secretary si Leila de lima, hindi gaano ka talamak ang drug trading sa loob,” he said.
[I was already at the maximum security compound in 2004, so I was able to observe the situation prior to De Lima’s arrival. Before De Lima arrived, the drug trade at the Bilibid was not rampant.]