Sandiganbayan freezes Ligots’ assets

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 07 2011 04:21 PM | Updated as of Apr 08 2011 12:26 AM

MANILA, Philippines - The Sandiganbayan Fourth Division has a writ of attachment against properties of retired Lt. Gen. Jacinto C. Ligot and his relatives in connection with the forfeiture case filed by the government in 2005. 

 

In a 7-page resolution penned by Associate Justice Jose R. Hernandez, the graft court directed Sheriff Romulo Barrozo to attach “so much of the real and personal properties of the respondents located in the Philippines." 

 

Barrozo was told to see that the assets would be “sufficient to satisfy the Republic’s demand” in the amount of P135,280,822.11 equivalent to the supposed unlawfully-acquired assets amassed by Ligot based on the complaint filed by the government in 2005. 

 

Ligot’s co-defendants include his wife Erlinda; children Paulo, Riza and Miguel; brother-in-law, Edgardo Yambao; and sister, Dr. Miguela Ligot-Paragas.

The defendants earlier opposed the attachment of their properties on the ground that there has been no finding by the court that the properties subject of the forfeiture case were in fact out of proportion of the defendants’ lawful income or were fraudulently acquired. 

 

They argued a freeze order would be a prejudgment of forfeiture case. 

 

But the Sandiganbayan held that the government’s motion for the issuance of preliminary attachment or garnishment is sufficient in both form and substance and that there exists a prima facie case that justifies its issuance.

Deputy Special Prosecutors Robert E. Kallos and Cornelio Somido submitted a list of Ligot’s assets they want frozen including 4 vehicles, 4 condominium units, farmlands, buildings and residential lots. 

 

The condo units include one in Burgundy Plaza on Katipunan Road, Quezon City in the name of Yambao; Essensa East Forbes Tower in Taguig City registered to Mrs. Ligot; one in Paseo Parkview Tower 2 owned by Paulo Ligot; and one in Building MC-14 at the Pamayanang Diego Silang by the Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA) in the name of the former Armed Forces comptroller. 

 

Government lawyers said they are also seeking recovery of the proceeds of two properties in California, USA - one located in 1240 Cabernet Circle, Anaheim and another in 7102 Stanton Avenue, Buena Park –  reportedly already sold by Ligot’s wife for P66 million. 

 

Likewise sought for forfeiture are P8 million previously held in Ligot’s account with the Armed Forces and Police Savings and Loans Association Inc. (AFPSLAI) and another P5 million in a separate account in the name of his wife that were already withdrawn leaving balances of only P168,988.36 and P55,193.75, respectively.