Ex-aide: Checks for De Lima encashed in Parañaque bank

Patty Pasion
Ex-aide: Checks for De Lima encashed in Parañaque bank
(UPDATED) Herbert Colanggo's talent manager Reynante Diaz and former Bureau of Corrections chief Rafael Ragos also say they gave money to Ronnie Dayan

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Senator Leila de Lima’s former aide disclosed on Monday, October 10, that he has cashed out at least P300,000 worth of checks for her when the 2016 election period started. He admitted, however, that he did not know where where the money had come from.

Former Presidential Security Group (PSG) member Romel Falcasantos said that he went to Metrobank in Dr A Santos Branch, Sucat, Parañaque at least 5 times to encash checks for the former justice secretary. The checks amount from P100,000 to P300,000.

Falcasantos said that he was given an authorization letter by his former boss to claim the money for her. He has no idea, however, who gave the money to De Lima.

“Hindi ko po alam kasi sobre lang po ang inaabot sa akin ni Ma’am De Lima kung saan nasa loob ang bank check. Hindi ko po iyon binubuksan at inaabot na lang ang ito sa Metrobank,” Falcasantos said in his sworn statement before the 4th scheduled House probe on the illegal drug trade inside the New Bilibid Prison (NBP).

(I don’t know because only an envelope was given to me by Ma’am De Lima to where the bank check is placed. I don’t open it. I just hand it to Metrobank.)

Bilibid bribe

Reynante Diaz, inmate Herbert Colanggo’s talent manager, also disclosed the money his boss has given to De Lima in exchange of favors.

Colanggo, known for producing a music video inside his “kubol,” paid De Lima P1 million whenever he held a concert inside the NBP, according to Diaz. Among the stars they have invited, said Diaz, were the Mocha Girls, Shamrock, Viva Hot Babes, K Brosas, and Siakol, among others.

Aside from that, Diaz also said that De Lima received P3 million from Colanggo every month from October 2013 to November 2014. 

Diaz said that he personally delivered all these payments to De Lima’s former driver and alleged lover, Ronnie Dayan.

De Lima has denied having romantic links with Dayan, as well as with Joenel Sanchez, saying, “Dapat huminto na sila sa ganyan. (They should stop with that) That’s too much already of a violation of my rights. Unwarranted intrusion sa privacy ko, tsaka mga kasinungalingan din po yan (Unwarranted intrusion to my privacy, as well as being lies).”

De Lima added, “I understand tinuro na ni Jaybee si Joenel. Sino ba talaga bagman ko? Joenel Sanchez o Ronnie Dayan?” (I understand Jaybee pointed to Joenel. Who is supposed to be my bagman? Joenel Sanchez or Ronnie Dayan?)

Additional deliveries?

Former Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) head Rafael Ragos, who earlier filed his affidavit before the House probe, issued another testimony on Monday. He detailed additional cash delivery for his former superior through Dayan:

  • January to March 2013: P1.6 million from the caterer of the NBP, given by Jorge Goff
  • January 2013 (on 4 separate occasions): P1.7 million allegedly from inmates, coursed through Jovencio Ablen, Jr
  • February 2013: P 1 million for German Agojo’s appolication for pardon

Ragos said that he handed these sums over to Dayan in De Lima’s home at South Bay Village in Parañaque City. – Rappler.com

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Patty Pasion

Patty leads the Rappler+ membership program. She used to be a Rappler multimedia reporter who covered politics, labor, and development issues of vulnerable sectors.