De los Angeles arrested anew for syndicated estafa; awaits filing of eight more cases

August 4, 2010 10:51 am 

MANILA, Aug. 3 – The Bangko Sentral gn Pilipinas has eight more criminal cases to file against Celso delos Angeles of the Legacy Group of Banks who was arrested by Quezon City police at the St. Luke’s Hospital on Tuesday for syndicated estafa.

It was his second arrest of the five cases thus far filed against him by the BSP and one that will likely put him finally in jail for allegedly duping thousands of depositors a total P12 billion.

A complaint for syndicated estafa does not permit one to post bail, BSP Assistant Governor and General Counsel Juan de Zuniga, Jr. said.

He said delos Angeles evaded incarceration when he was first charged with hoodwinking Rural Bank of DARBCI depositors in General Santos City a total of P830 million in deposits two years earlier.

But the Regional Trial Court in General Santos City that issued the warrant for his arrest allowed delos Angeles, despite strong opposition from the BSP, to be placed under custodial arrest.

Since then the cancer-stricken delos Angeles had been living at the Cathedral Heights, which is a condominium within the St. Luke’s Hospital compound where the self- styled financier receives a continuous flow of visitors daily, de Zuniga said.

The Regional Trial Court of Ormoc City in Leyte province, however, refused to grant delos Angeles the same privilege, he said.

According to Zuniga, the arrest was based on a BSP complaint alleging delos Angeles defrauded Rural Bank of Kananga depositors, later known as the First Interstate Bank, another P487 million.

Eight more criminal complaints await delos Angeles in connection with the loss of some P12 billion unwittingly deposited in 13 Legacy-linked banks across the country, Zuniga said.

One other banker, Hilario P. Soriano of the defunct Rural Bank of San Miguel in Bulacan, had been convicted also of estafa but whose case awaits final judgment by the Supreme Court.

The BSP has filed “hundreds” of criminal cases against bankers since 1993 under varying states of litigation, the most famous of which include executives at the former Urban Commercial Bank. (PNA) RMA/VSV/utb

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