Ex-Nueva Ecija solon acquitted of graft, malversation over PDAF scam

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 01 2023 07:01 PM

MANILA — Former Nueva Ecija 4th District Rep. Rodolfo Antonino was acquitted by the Sandiganbayan 6th Division on Thursday over the graft and malversation charges he was facing related to the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) scam. 

The anti-graft court found Antonino not guilty of the raps against him, as the prosecution failed to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt.

Only the dispositive portion of the decision was read during the promulgation and the court has yet to upload the decision on its website.

The Office of the Ombudsman filed the graft and malversation cases against Antonino and former agriculture secretary and Bohol 3rd District Representative Arthur Yap in 2017.

The cases against Yap were later dismissed by the court, citing inordinate delay in the filing of the cases.

Yap and Antonino were accused of misusing P14.55 million in 2007 through the National Agribusiness Corporation (NABCOR) and Buhay Mo Mahal Ko Foundation for projects which turned out to be non-existent.

While Antonino was acquitted by the court, NABCOR staff Encarnita Munsod was found guilty on all counts.

She was sentenced to suffer imprisonment of 6 to 7 years for each of the graft cases, 10 to 17 years for one count of malversation and 6 to 10 years for the other malversation case.

She was also ordered to pay the Bureau of Treasury the total malversed fund amounting to P14.55 million plus interest. 

Munsod’s lawyer manifested before the court that they will appeal the decision before the Supreme Court.