MANILA - Former senator Jinggoy Estrada filed a motion for leave of court to file demurrer to evidence before the Sandiganbayan 5th Division, stressing that the prosecution supposedly failed to prove he committed plunder through the Priority Development Assistance Fund scam.
In the motion filed by his lawyers, Estrada said the prosecution failed to show proof that he was the mastermind and there was conspiracy among him and the other accused individuals.
“Senator Estrada begs leave of this honorable court to file a demurrer to evidence and to move for the dismissal of the indictment against him for failure of the prosecution to prove the charge in the information with evidence showing guilt beyond reasonable doubt,” Estrada’s lawyers said.
If the motion for leave is granted and the demurrer is filed but later denied by the court, the accused can still present evidence.
But if the leave is denied, the accused is deemed to have waived his chance to present evidence if the demurrer is denied. The case will then be considered up for decision.
Estrada also emphasized in the motion for leave that the 5-person special division granted him bail last year.
“An evaluation of the prosecution’s evidence is warranted given the honorable court’s determination that Sen. Estrada is entitled to bail given the weakness of the prosecution’s evidence and in light of recent judicial pronouncements on the crime of plunder,” Estrada’s lawyers said.