MANILA— The Senate Blue Ribbon Committee on Friday said it would help in the search for crucial documents from Pharmally that they believe could shed light on the ongoing probe.
Pharmally's Secretary and Treasurer Mohit Dargani, during the continuation of the Senate hearing, said the financial documents might still be in their office and are supposedly "in boxes" after their office lease expired.
Dargani said they want to start the search at a "warehouse."
"We no longer have that office anymore... I don't know who would know, that is why I want to go back and also see what is happening," Dargani said, explaining why the documents the Senate request from him have not been turned over.
The panel's chairman, Sen. Richard Gordon, said the Office of the Sergeant-At-Arms (OSAA) could look for the boxes.
"We will have, I will direct the OSAA, request him, and direct his people to accompany you with proper vehicles to get those boxes," Gordon said.
"We will send the OSAA there and we will look for those boxes, if we don't find them then you'll be in a lot more trouble," he added.
Another executive, Linconn Ong, appealed to the senators to speak with Dargani, their accountant or their tax lawyer as they try to locate the boxes.
But Ong said he does not know anything about the boxes and could not provide information as to where these are.
Resigned Pharmally officer Krizle Grace Mago, on the other hand, also denied ever seeing the boxes in Pharmally's office.
“This is the first time na narinig ko [I heard] about the boxes. That time walang instructions na magbalot ng [there were no instructions to pack] boxes," she said.
The senators then voted to place Ong and Dargani at the Pasay City Jail because of the mystery hounding the crucial documents, as well as for failing to submit it to senators.
To recall, Dargani and his sister, Twinkle, were cited in contempt for refusing to submit subpoenaed documents.
"We have to defend the truth to the Senate... Director Quimbo will send a team to go to the offices there and find out and trace where all these documents went to," Gordon said, instructing Pharmally's outsourced accountants, Jeff Mariano and Iluminada Sebial, to assist them.
Mariano and Sebial earlier admitted only recording the firm's transactions without seeing any support documents.
"The director general is required to go to the offices where they originally were and find out which truck, which vehicles and which people took it out so we can trace it. The OSAA should try and find out where they went," the senator added.
DO THE BOXES EXIST?
This developed after Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon quizzed Dargani where the documents on cost of sales and the audited financial statements detailing billions worth of transactions are.
Dargani, meanwhile, said they already provided and "complied" by giving some of the documents to the Senate, but some of those being asked were not addressed to him.
"The documents that were asked from me were not properly address to me and I don’t really have those documents, I left for the States in August, fast forward… we came back, we lost our office lease our home lease is also up for expiry….so everything is really on boxes," Dargani told senators.
"If we could talk as well and discuss it also with our accountant and our lawyer... As we also have to comply with the documents that I believe for the BIR, which they already started their audit on Pharmally and our personal taxes," he added.
Mohit also said the request for documents was addressed to Ong, who said he does not have any information as to where these are.
Ong, meanwhile, said they did not want to submit the documents earlier because they are being investigated too, by the BIR.
“The reason ayaw naming mag-submit ng ganitong documents is because we are heavily under investigation of BIR kaya talagang hindi kami nag-submit. Honestly, hindi ko po talaga alam kung nasaan itong mga documents," Ong explained.
(We did not want to submit these kinds of documents because we are heavily under investigation by the BIR, discouraging us to do so. Honestly, I don't know where these documents are.)
Aira Marie Moscoso, Mariano's employee who is also a sourced accountant for Pharmally, said she does not have any knowledge about the boxes they are talking about.
"Hindi ko rin po alam... From what I know po, baka hindi rin po niya (Jeff Mariano) alam kasi pareho lang po kami ng ginagawa," she said, noting that they just "record" transactions and return it to them.
(I really do not know. From what I know, he does not know it too because we are only doing the same things.)
The paper trail on Pharmally's transactions remain elusive since the early parts of the hearing, with Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon asking Sebial what documents they had to prove Pharmally's cost of sales amounting to P7.092 billion.
Pressed if she ever screened the documents, Sebial said she only "checked the list" as that was her primary role.
— with reports from Johnson Manabat, ABS-CBN News