Ex-DOJ chief Aguirre eyes more libel raps vs Tulfo

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 05 2020 08:57 AM | Updated as of Mar 05 2020 09:14 AM

Former justice secretary Vitaliano Aguirre and Special envoy to China Ramon Tulfo. ABS-CBN News/file

MANILA - Former justice secretary Vitaliano Aguirre on Thursday said he would file more libel charges against special envoy to China Ramon Tulfo for alleging that the former received a cut from the "pastillas" bribery scheme at Manila's airport.

Aguirre said Tulfo's allegations stemmed from his refusal to help the latter consolidate some 90 cases filed against him by the Iglesia Ni Cristo in different parts of the country.

Tulfo earlier published several articles alleging Aguirre protected human traffickers during his stint as justice secretary, which the latter denied.

"Ang importante sa kaniya (Tulfo) makapanira ng reputasyon ng isang tao," he told ANC's Early Edition.

(What's important to him is to destroy the reputation of a person.)

Aguirre reiterated that he "didn’t receive a single centavo" from the bribery scheme, which sprouted from the Bureau of Immigration's issuance of visa upon arrival (VUA) to Chinese nationals.

He earlier revealed that Tulfo's sister, former Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo, was among officials who urged him to issue the memorandum circular for VUA.

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Aguirre, meantime, defended the VUA scheme but hit government's implementation.

"Walang problema dyan. VUA is good per se. It is in the implementation. Hindi iniiscreen pasok nang pasok. They are not properly vetted kaya pumapasok pati mga terorista ata nakakapasok eh," he said.

(There's no problem there. VUA is good per se. It is in the implementation. They are not screening those who are coming in. They are not properly vetted, I think even terrorists can come in.)

Senators are set to investigate Thursday the alleged bribery in the Immigration bureau and its links to the Philippine Offshore Gaming Operations industry.