THE Sandiganbayan has sentenced to 10 years a former municipal mayor of Cagayan for illegally withholding the salaries of five employees in 2007.
Based on the information provided by the Office of the Ombudsman, the anti-graft court found the accused, Ignacio Taruz, former mayor of Buguey, Cagayan, guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime violation of Section 3(e) of Republic Act 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act).
Aside from imprisonment, Taruz was also perpetually disqualified from holding public office.
Ombudsman prosecutors presented documents to show “that complainants are entitled to receive their salaries as they have valid appointments” and “that they rendered services for the months of July and August 2007, as shown by their respective Daily Time Record and employee logbook.”
In its decision, the court ruled that the “accused demonstrated his perverse motive or ill-will to complainants, known appointees of his political rival, by his refusal to sign the check [representing their salaries].”
Section 3(e) of the RA No. 3019 is committed by a public officer who directly or indirectly requests or receives any gift, present, share, percentage or benefit for himself or for any other person, in connection with any contract or transaction, wherein the public officer in his official capacity has to intervene under the law.