Impeachment Court orders PSBank prexy to bring original copy of ‘leaked’ CJ bank documents

February 15, 2012 11:12 pm 

By Jelly F. Musico

MANILA, Feb. 15 – Impeachment Court Presiding Officer Senator Juan Ponce Enrile ordered on Wednesday Philippines Savings Bank (PSBank) president Pascual Garcia III to bring to the impeachment court the original copy of the ‘leaked’ bank documents which the prosecution attached in its supplemental request to subpoena the bank documents of Chief Justice Renato Corona.

”You are ordered to bring the original with all the safeguards to ferret out with respect with the temporary restraining order,” Enrile said.

Enrile made the ruling after Garcia testified to the court that the leaked documents appeared to be different from the original documents specifically “Annex A,” which referred to document bearing an account number 089-1910037-37 which Garcia said pertained to a dollar account with the bank.

Garcia was hesitant to answer some questions and at one point, Enrile threatened to cite him in contempt for refusing to answer questions pertaining to the details of the leaked documents.

”My God your answers are vague. I will hold you in contempt. Just answer yes or no,” Enrile commanded the PSBank official as he asked: “Do you have this (Annex A) kind of document in your record?, or something similar?”

Garcia answered: “It’s different, they appear to be similar but there are discrepancies. We have this kind of document with those details.”

It was Senator-judge Franklin Drilon who moved to direct Garcia to bring the original of the ‘leaked’ documents which contains peso and dollar accounts in an effort to “test the credibility of the witness.”

As the court direct Garcia to bring the original of the leaked documents, Enrile instructed the bank official to cover with masking tape the dollar account number so as not to violate the law on foreign currency deposit unit which the SC used as basis in issuing TRO on Corona’s dollar accounts.

”It’s not our fault that you mixed the peso and the dollar accounts. Just cover the dollar account including the number. We just want to know signatures of the approving officer,” Enrile said.

Based on the ‘leaked’ documents attached in the prosecution’s request for supplemental subpoena, Corona has five peso accounts and five dollar accounts.

Senator-judge Joker Arroyo manifested his concerns on what the court will do if the leaked documents found to have been ‘forged or falsified’ by the prosecution.

”If it is a forgery, what happens. we spent so much time explaining what. The idea is if it is spurious document, what happens? I don’t want to speculate,” Arroyo said.

Enrile said the reason why he ruled to order Garcia to bring the original documents was to test whether the documents were fake or altered.

”To find out whether there are indeed the documents in question are invented is to make a direct comparison of the original to see where the invention has arisen. If they are identical, they the witness is lying. But if the comparison shows that there is substantial differences, then the witness is credible and will then consider the documents which categorized as invented as fake,” Enrile said.

Enrile said if found that the leaked documents have been falsified in some respect, “then we will determine whether the falsification is substantial enough to exclude this evidence as an evidence in this case at the proper time.”

”Secondly, to make those responsible for that alteration responsible for it and answer for it and it will be the burden of the prosecution to explain why they requested for subpoena duces tecum on the face of an altered documents. At that point, it’s up to the court to decide whether disciplinary measure will be imposed on those responsible for alteration,” he said.

Enrile earlier ruled to discuss the matter, including the written explanation of the prosecution in a caucus on Monday.

The House prosecution claimed that a 'small lady' provided the leaked documents through Rep. Reynaldo Umali. (PNA) RMA/jfm

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