Supreme Court allows Napoles to attend Sandiganbayan hearings

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 21 2019 03:04 PM

Janet Lim Napoles. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA - The Supreme Court has allowed convicted plunderer Janet Lim Napoles to attend her hearings at the Sandiganbayan, mostly in connection with the Priority Development Assistance Fund scam.

According to Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin, the high court has already granted the request of the Sandiganbayan to have Napoles transported from the Correctional Institution for Women in Mandaluyong City to the anti-graft court in Quezon City for her hearings.

Convicts like Napoles, who was convicted in the plunder case involving former senator Bong Revilla, are not normally allowed to leave prison. 

“Yeah, we already granted the request of the Sandiganbayan. We really realized that there is need for granting the request because it will be counter-productive if we did not,” Bersamin said. 

Hearings of cases involving Napoles have been stalled because the Sandiganbayan is still waiting for the approval of the Supreme Court of their request to have Napoles transported to Quezon City instead of courts holding hearings at the CIW.

“These rules are very rigid supposed to be, but then we make exceptions when the circumstances demand the exception. And this one clearly demands an exception,” Bersamin said.