Graft court absolves Sen. JV Ejercito in technical malversation case

MANILA, Philippines — The Sandiganbayan 6th Division has acquitted Senator JV Ejercito in a case involving the alleged illegal use of public funds filed by the Office of the Ombudsman.

The charges stemmed from the senator’s allegedly anomalous use of P2.1 million calamity fund of San Juan City to purchase firearms when he was still the mayor.

In a decision released by the anti-graft court on Thursday, the Sandiganbayan Fourth Division explained it ruled in favor of the senator’s demurrer to evidence which sought to dismiss the case filed against him due to lack of evidence.

The Sandiganbayan said the prosecution failed to prove the existence of the alleged illegal transaction.

Aside from Senator Ejercito, the anti-graft court also acquitted his 14 co-accused, who are former city councilors, including former San Juan City vice mayor Francis Zamora.

Alongside the acquittal is the lifting of the hold departure order against them.

In a statement, Senator Ejercito has thanked Sandiganbayan for what he described as “upholding justice and fairness” in the trial of his case.

The senator is also glad that his name has already been cleared, further noting it proves he did not err in trusting the country’s judicial system. — Joyce Balancio | UNTV News & Rescue

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