MANILA - Former Sumisip, Basilan Mayor Haber Amin Asarul and former treasurer Camlian Borjal were found guilty of multiple cases for failing to remit insurance premiums, home loan payments and taxes of municipal employees from 2007 to 2009.
In separate decisions issued by the Sandiganbayan 5th Division on May 29, Asarul and Borjal were ordered to pay a fine of P255,000 each, or P5,000 for each of the 23 counts of violation of the National Internal Revenue Code, 9 counts of violation of the Government Service Insurance System Act and 19 counts of violation of the Home Development Mutual Fund Law.
“They are, therefore, each ordered to pay a fine of P5,000 in each of these cases, within ten days from today. Otherwise, the court shall issue a warrant for their arrest,” the court said in the decisions signed by Chairperson Rafael Lagos and Associate Justices Maria Theresa Mendoza-Arcega and Maryann Corpus-Mañalac.
The two former Sumisip officials initially entered a plea of not guilty after the Office of the Ombudsman filed the charges against them in 2015.
Based on the investigation conducted by the Ombudsman, the municipality failed to remit GSIS contributions of its employees from October 2007 to May 2008 and failed to remit on time contributions for June 2008 to May 2009.
Under the GSIS Act, employers should remit contributions on or before the 10th day of every succeeding month.
The investigation further found that Asarul and Borjal also failed to remit on time the Home Development Mutual Fund or Pag-IBIG Fund contributions of employees for October 2007 to January 2009 and for March 2009 to May 2009.
Under the Home Development Mutual Fund Law, employers must remit contributions within 15 days from the date the contributions were collected.
Investigation also revealed that remittances of taxes withheld from employees from July 2007 to May 2009 were also delayed.
During a hearing on May 29, the two pleaded guilty after a re-arraignment was ordered by the court following a plea bargaining agreement reached by the defense and the prosecution.
After entering their pleas, judgment was then rendered by the court finding them guilty of the charges.