Prosecutors ask Sandiganbayan to return Napoles to Taguig jail

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 12 2017 01:27 PM

Members of the Bureau of Correction guide Janet Lim Napoles as she arrives at the Sandiganbayan on May 10. Napoles was brought to court to sign a pre-trial order in her case involving the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) of former APEC Party-list Rep. Edgar Valdez. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

MANILA- Prosecutors have asked the Sandiganbayan 5th Division to return alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles to the detention facility in Camp Bagong Diwa, Taguig City after her acquittal in her serious illegal detention case by the Court of Appeals.

This as Napoles' camp sought her transfer to a facility under the National Bureau of Investigation, citing alleged death threats. 

"The prosecution, with the kind indulgence of the Honorable Court, is filing the instant motion for the issuance of an order/resolution reiterating its previously issued commitment order, or in the alternative, and if necessary, to issue a new commitment order for the guidance of all parties," the prosecution said in its urgent motion filed Thursday.

The prosecution said Napoles was held at the Taguig facility on orders of the Sandiganbayan before the Makati Regional Trial Court found her guilty in the serious illegal detention she faced for allegedly detaining her relative Benhur Luy. 

Napoles faced the lower court trial at the same time proceedings at the Sandiganbayan on plunder cases against her went underway. 

Napoles is currently held at the Correctional Institution for Women, a facility under the Bureau of Corrections in Mandaluyong City, where she was moved after she was found guilty in the Luy case.

Her camp, meanwhile, reiterated before the anti-graft court their request for her transfer to the National Bureau of Investigation Custodial Center after purportedly receiving death threats from unknown individuals. 

"Due to the significant circumstances affecting her cases, accused was now bombarded with almost everyday death threats to the point that her personal belongings were ransacked," the camp of Napoles said.

In a brief meeting led by Clerk of Court Liezl De Leon, the prosecution was given until Monday to comment on the prosecution's request for Napoles' NBI detention. 

The matter would be submitted for resolution upon submission of their comment. 

The prosecution filed similar requests for Napoles' transfer to Camp Bagong Diwa before the Sandiganbayan 1st and 3rd Divisions, where she is facing separate PDAF-related cases. The 1st Division set the motion for hearing on Monday morning, and the 3rd Division at 1:30 p.m. the same day.

Napoles' camp is currently in talks with the government on her possible admission as a state witness in the cases stemming from the P10-billion pork barrel fund scam, where lawmakers' discretionary funds were transferred to bogus non-government organizations under her. 

She has vowed to name officials even higher than lawmakers once she testifies.