Sombero turns over P2-M from alleged Jack Lam bribe

Dharel Placido, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 22 2016 03:50 PM | Updated as of Dec 22 2016 04:09 PM

MANILA – A former policeman has turned over a portion of the P50 million extortion money that two Bureau of Immigration (BI) deputy commissioners allegedly took from gambling tycoon Jack Lam.

Wally Sombero, a former cop and Lam’s alleged representative, turned over the P2 million to the Office of the Ombudsman as he sought to strengthen his graft complaint against sacked BI deputy commissioners Al Argosino and Michael Robles.

Sombero also submitted a supplemental affidavit for the graft case he earlier filed.

Sombero’s lawyer, Ted Contacto, said the turnover of the P2 million completes the picture in the bribery scandal that has rocked the immigration bureau, an attached agency of the Department of Justice headed by Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II.

Argosino and Robles earlier admitted to accepting money from Lam supposedly as part of their investigation against the Macau-based businessman.

But the money was reportedly in exchange for the release of some illegal Chinese employees arrested at Lam’s Fontana Leisure Park and Casino in Pampanga. 

The two officials have turned over P30 million of the P50 million alleged bribe money to Aguirre. 

They said the missing P2 million went to Sombero and another P18 million was allegedly pocketed by then BI intelligence chief Charles Calima. 

Calima, who was fired by Aguirre in the wake of the scandal, has since returned the P18 million to the Philippine National Police – Criminal Investigation and Detection Group.

Argosino earlier claimed it was Sombero who deducted the P2 million from the P50 million bribe.

Sombero, however, claimed Argosino gave him the money to fund the legal team needed to assist the Chinese workers arrested by the BI. - with a report from Niko Baua, ABS-CBN News