Sandiganbayan to seize P2.8M from Cong. Ruben Ecleo

THE Sandiganbayan is poised to pounce on the pieces of property of Rep. Ruben Ecleo Jr. of Dinagat Island in a move to transfer his wealth under the name of the state.

Sandiganbayan spokesman Renato Bocar on Thursday said that the anti-graft court was set to seize the assets of the fugitive lawmaker in order to execute what was stated in a resolution dated April 12.

“It is already ripe for seizure because the [April 12] resolution is already final and executory. What will be done now is to enforce the writ of execution,” Bocar said during an interview with The Manila Times.

Bocar is commenting on a motion filed by Diosdado Calonge, the director of Prosecution Bureau VI, and Assistant Special Prosecutor Rex Reynaldo Sandoval, a son of Sandiganbayan Presiding Justice and Second Division Chairman Edilberto Sandoval.

In a three-page motion, prosecutors asked the Sandiganbayan First Division to appoint the Clerk of Court of the Regional Trial Court of Surigao del Norte to act as the ex-officio sheriff to seize Ecleo’s wealth.

The Sandiganbayan ruled that Ecleo has a P2.8-million liability to the state, stemming from his two graft cases, where the first one was tagged at P444,5875.17 and the other at P2.412 million.
The prosecutors said that since the pieces of property fall under the regional trial court, appointing them as the ex-officio sheriff will “facilitate the speedy enforcement of the writ.”

They prayed that the Clerk of Court would be the “special sheriff [who will] enforce the writ of execution as regards the money judgment of the Sandiganbayan relative to its October 13, 2006 decision [on Ecleo’s graft cases].”

Bocar explained that because the anti-graft court cannot send its sheriff to the provinces, the prosecution was just opting “for practical purposes” to enforce the writ.

He said that while the Sandiganbayan might have already attached Ecleo’s assets, the next thing to do is to seize them to satisfy the P2.8- million ruling of Sandiganbayan.

Ecleo is at-large, and the House of Representatives has not dropped his name from the roll of lawmakers. (Manila Times)

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