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National

OOPS! | SC never cleared Marcoses of ill-gotten wealth raps

InterAksyon.com
The online news portal of TV5

MANILA, Philippines -- The Supreme Court said it never cleared any of the heirs of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos in a case for ill-gotten wealth but, in fact, reinstated charges against two of them -- Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Irene Marcos-Araneta.

The clarification was issued by SC spokesman Theodore Te to correct the “misleading headline” story published Monday by the Manila Standard Today newspaper, “SC Clears FM Heirs of Ill-Gotten Charges.” 

The decision cited was in the case G.R. No. 171701, or “Republic of the Philippines, petitioner, versus Ma. Imelda ‘Imee’ Marcos-Manotoc, et al., respondents,” issued by the Second Division -- then made up of Associate Justices Arturo D. Brion as acting chairman, Martin S. Villarama Jr. Jose Portugal Perez, Maria Lourdes P.A. Sereno and Bienvenido L. Reyes -- in February 2012.

Te said it was Sereno who penned the decision, which the other members of the division concurred in unanimously.

However, while the ruling says “it was not proven that respondents conspired in accumulating ill-gotten wealth," it also point out that, "they may be in possession, ownership or control of such ill-gotten properties or the proceeds thereof as heirs of the Marcos couple.”

“Thus, their lack of participation in any illegal act does not remove the character of the property as ill-gotten and, therefore, as rightfully belonging to the State,” it added.

It is only during the trial of Civil Case No. 0002 before the Sandiganbayan that there could be a determination of whether these properties are indeed ill-gotten or were legitimately acquired by respondents and their predecessors,” the high court ruling said.

“In sum, the Marcos siblings are maintained as respondents, because (1) the action pending before the Sandiganbayan is one that survives death, and, therefore, the rights to the estate must be duly protected; (2) they allegedly control, possess or own ill-gotten wealth, though their direct involvement in accumulating or acquiring such wealth may not have been proven,” the decision said.

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