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World | National

Amalilio, now confined in a hospital, also facing fraud charges in Malaysia

Emmanuel Amalilio while at the Kota Kinabalu airport on January 25, 2013. The photo was taken at 4:12 p.m. in Malaysia after Amalilio was turned over by Malaysian authorities to agents of the Philippine National Bureau of Investigation.
The online news portal of TV5

MANILA, Philippines – Emmanuel Amalilio, the brains behind the P12-billion pyramiding scam in the Philippines, also allegedly duped investors in Malaysia and is also facing charges there.

But in a phone interview with News5 on Monday, Ismail Mapandi, one of Amalilio’s victims in the Philippines who is now in Malaysia, said that according to the Malaysian police, the Aman Futures Group head and founder failed to go court for a hearing because he had been confined to a hospital.

“They said he was sick that’s why he was brought to a hospital and failed to go to the court this morning to face the complaining investors. But they didn’t tell us his ailment,” Mapandi told News5 in the local language.

In a separate interview with reporters on Monday, Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Leila de Lima confirmed that Amalilio was also facing fraud charges in Malaysia that’s why he was not allowed to leave for Manila.

Reports quoted immigration officers in Malaysia as saying that Amalilio lacked some documents that’s why he was not allowed to go back to the Philippines to face his accusers.

But the Philippine National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) earlier said its agents brought all the necessary papers to be able to bring back Amalilio to Manila, who was charged with syndicated estafa.

Amalilio was about to board a Cebu Pacific plane on Friday  at the Kota Kinabalu airport when Malaysian authorities stopped him from flying out of the country. It was Musa Aman, chief minister of Sabah, who gave the order to stop Amalilio from boarding the plane, according to Department of Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas II.

The ball is now in the hands of the Philippine DOJ and the Department of Foreign Affairs to bring back Amalilio to the Philippines. NBI director Nonnatus Rojas said his agency would wait for developments from the DOJ and DFA before taking the next move.

Rojas on Monday said there was no official declaration yet from Malaysia on why Amalilio was stopped from returning to Manila.

"Umaasa pa rin tayo na temporary setback lang ito. Handa ang buong NBI na ipatupad ang anumang utos na pagpapauwi kay Amalilio kapag naayos na [We are hoping that this is just a temporary setback. The NBI is ready to implement any order for Amalilio to return home once the problem is fixed]," he said.

Meanwhile, Malacang said Malaysia’s decision to stop Amalilio from returning to the Philippines had nothing to do with his citizenship.

"We made sure that when we were there, we would have all the documentary proof that Mr. Amalilio is a Filipino citizen," presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda told reporters on Monday.

"In fact, my understanding is that the National Bureau of Investigation officials also brought along a certified true copy of the birth certificate of Mr. Amalilio. So that is not a problem. We were ready to present the proof of his birth in the Philippines and his citizenship as well," added Lacierda.