Sandiganbayan acquits Mindoro lawmaker of graft

By Sheryll Mundo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 15 2011 02:53 PM | Updated as of Feb 16 2011 01:22 AM

MANILA, Philippines - The Sandiganbayan third division has acquitted Oriental Mindoro Rep. Rodolfo Valencia of violating the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act in 1992 when he was still governor of Oriental Mindoro.

 The anti-graft court said the prosecution failed to prove Valencia's guilt when he appointed Cresente Umbao as Sangguniang Bayan member of Pola, Oriental Mindoro within the 1-year election ban. Umbao apparently ran and lost in the 1992 elections.

Valencia is thankful that the court decided in his favor.

"I am very thankful that after 15 years this case is now closed. This was a political case filed by a political opponent of mine noon pa when I appointed a substitute sa board because one member died. It's mandatory for the governor to sign the order." Valencia said.

The court also lifted the hold departure order against Valencia.