Senator Sotto pushes ‘house arrest’ for Enrile

March 3, 2015 4:59 am 

MANILA, March 2 – Senator Vicente Sotto III formally sought on Monday the assistance of the Senate to pass a resolution asking the “proper authority to exercise its judicial compassion and allow” detained Senate Minority Leader Juan Ponce to be detained at his residence.

”Mr. President, may I move that a resolution expressing the sense of the Senate or at least some of its members be passed,” Sotto, acting minority leader, manifested on the floor.

Sotto cited the health conditions of the 91-year-old lawmaker who was charged with plunder for allegedly pocketing at least PhP183 million of his priority development assistance fund (PDAF).

”I am not here to plead for mercy. Senator Enrile has not been convicted. I simply want to rely on our operating principle that innocence is presumed,” Sotto said.

”Further, upon reaching the age of seventy, even convicted criminals are considered for pardon under present rule of the Department of Justice,” he added.

”I stand therefore for compassion, and that judgment be withheld till all the evidence of guilt are all in,” Enrile’s ally appealed.

Enrile is detained at the Philippine National Police (PNP) General Hospital at the Camp Crame in Quezon City. Last Thursday, he was rushed to the Makati Medical Center due to pneumonia.

Senators Ramon Revilla Jr. and Jinggoy Estrada were also charged with plunder and graft and presently detained at Camp Crame.

Upon the motion of Senate President Franklin Drilon, Sotto agreed to refer his request to the Senate Committee on Rules headed by Senate Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano. (PNA)

SCS/JFM

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