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Ex-whistleblower found guilty of graft

  • Written by Jester P. Manalastas
  • Published in Top Stories
  • Read: 246

FORMER whistleblower  Rodolfo “Jun” Lozada has been convicted of graft over the anomalous land deal he approved as president and chief executive officer of Philippine Forest Corp. in 2007 and 2008.

The Sandiganbayan Fourth Division found Lozada guilty of one count of graft for violation of Section 3 of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act over his involvement in the onerous land transaction.

The anti-graft court sentenced him to a minimum of six years up to a maximum of 10 years of imprisonment.
    
Lozada was charged with graft for unlawfully awarding the lease contract of a piece of land to his brother Jose Orlando Lozada.
    
Investigation also showed that he awarded lease contracts to firm Transforma Quinta, a private corporation in which he and his wife, Ma. Violeta, had been appointed to act for and in its behalf in certain financial transactions.
    
Lozada’s brother Jose Orlando was also found guilty and meted out the same jail terms.
   
Meanwhile, Lozada Jr. was acquitted of charges of violating Section 3(h) for having financial and pecuniary interest in the deals.
    
Lozada was the principal witness in the allegedly overpriced National Broadband Network (NBN)-ZTE deal amounting to $329 million.
    
He testified against former First Gentleman Mike Arroyo and former Commission on Elections (Comelec) chair Benjamin Abalos who allegedly used their influence and position in the government to lobby for the broadband deal with China.
 
Now Pampanga Rep. former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has a pending graft case over the broadband project while Abalos was already acquitted.