COA official off the hook in Arroyo's PCSO case

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 10 2017 03:06 PM

MANILA - The Sandiganbayan has dismissed plunder charges against one of the President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's co-accused in the alleged misuse of P366 mllion Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office funds.

Sandiganbayan 1st Division granted the motion to dismiss filed by Commission on Audit Confidential Fund Audit Unit Head Nilda Plaras.

Plaras anchored her motion to dismiss on a Supreme Court ruling dated August 23, 2016 wherein Arroyo was acquitted after the prosecution failed to identify a “main plunderer” in their case.

“Suffice it to state that in view of the recent development, the instant case against accused Plaras has no more leg to stand on, thus warranting its dismissal,” the court said in a resolution approved by Chairperson Efren Dela Cruz and Associate Justices Geraldine Faith Econg and Edgardo Caldona.

Apart from Arroyo, other PCSO officials such as Board Member Manuel Morato was already acquitted. Only Plaras and former PCSO General Manager Rosario Uriarte were left in the case.

The court also ordered the recall of the arrest warrant as well as the lifting of the hold departure order issued against Plaras.