Photo from the presentation of former Makati Mayor Ernesto Mercado
MANILA - Contrary to the claim of former Makati Vice-Mayor Ernesto Mercado, Vice President Jejomar Binay sold the so-called "Tagaytay mansion" as early as December 2012, according to a lawyer.
Atty. Martin Subido, Binay's legal counsel, said the property near Tagaytay City was sold in December 2012 to Constant Builders.
"The change in the title ownership is being processed by BIR (Bureau of Internal Revenue). The property is listed in his SALN (Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Networth)," he added.
The Vice President's 2011 SALN included a residential lot in Alfonso, Cavite, which he acquired through "Acknowledgment of Services and Deed of Cession."
Mercado earlier told the Senate Blue Ribbon subcommittee that the Binay family allegedly owns a 5,000-square-meter property with three structures near Tagaytay.
He said that initially, Binay only got 1,000 square meters as "attorney's fee" after winning a case for a certain Ladislaw Diwa of Cavite.
The property expanded to 5,000 square meters after the family got more land around the original property.
"Kaya lang malabo na hong mapatituluhan yan dahil ang tunay na may titulo sa kanya diyan ay 1,000 square meters," he said.
Mercado also accused Binay of owning a 350-hectare property spanning four barangays in Rosario, Batangas.
Meanwhile, United Nationalist Alliance interim secretary JV Bautista said Mercado continues to deceive the public by making outrageous claims.
The Vice President earlier dismissed Mercado's claim on the Rosario property, saying he only leased a portion of the estate for JCB Farms. The said property is now owned by Sunchamp Real Estate Development Corporation.
Subido earlier said that Binay had declared the JCB Farms in his SALN and sold it in 2010 when he assumed office as Vice President.
Cavite Gov. Jonvic Remulla, meanwhile, said the Binay family continues to lease 9 hectares of the Rosario property.
He said Dra. Elenita Binay, wife of the vice-president, has a flower farm there.
"It's a legitimate business. It pays its taxes. Its stated income is in the BIR," he said.