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Sandigan suspends Bicol lawmaker

  • Written by Jester P. Manalastas
  • Published in Nation
  • Read: 144

ANOTHER member of the House of Representatives was ordered suspended by the Sandiganbayan over graft charges.

The Sixth Division of the Sandiganbayan slapped Camarines Sur Rep. L-Ray Villafuerte with a 90-day suspension from his duties as member of Congress.

Villafuerte is facing three counts of graft cases over alleged questionable fuel purchases worth P20 million during his term as governor of Camarines Sur.

The resolution directed Villafuerte to “cease and desist from further performing and/or exercising the functions, duties and privileges of his position as congressman of the second district …for 90 days.”

The Sandiganbayan sent Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez a copy of the suspension order for implementation.

Earlier, the Anti-graft court issued 90-day suspension order against Pangasinan Rep. Amado Espino in connection with his graft case that stemmed from the alleged black sand mining operations in Lingayen Gulf.
   
In the case of Villafuerte, the Office of the Ombudsman alleged that he connived with Jeffrey Lo, a private individual and proprietor of Naga Fuel Express Zone/Petron Naga Fuel Express, for the purchase of petroleum products.
   
It said that Villafuerte gave “unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference to Lo causing undue injury to the province of Camarines Sur because of no proper public bidding.
   
Investigation showed that Villafuerte bought petroleum products in three tranches in 2010, paying P5 million on January 22; another P5 million between January 7 and 23; and another P10 million on April 7.