Mike Arroyo arraignment on chopper deal
MANILA, Philippines - Former First Gentleman Jose Miguel Arroyo will be arraigned Tuesday, January 29, before the Sandiganbayan Second Division on a graft charge concerning his alleged involvement in the sale of second-hand choppers to the police in 2009.
Defense lawyer Edna Batacan confirmed that Arroyo, husband of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, will be in court to submit his plea for the hearing scheduled at 1:30 pm.
The conditional arraignment is required before the graft court can grant the defendant’s request for leave to travel abroad filed last January 15.
Arroyo earlier secured approval of his travel request from the Fourth Division where he is facing a separate graft case in connection with his alleged participation and interest in the US$329-M national broadband network (NBN) project awarded to Chinese contractor, ZTE Corp.
The NBN-ZTE deal was eventually rescinded on the heels of a Senate investigation into allegations of overpricing and bribery.
According to his travel request, Arroyo will stay at the Imperial Hotel Tokyo in Edogawa-Ku, Tokyo, Japan, from February 3 to 7 during which he will be holding dialogues with members of the Association of Overseas Filipino Community.
From Japan, Arroyo will proceed to Hong Kong and will be billeted at the Marco Polo Gateway in Kowloon from February 7 to 10, 2013 to join the corporate planning work of officers and personnel of the Lourdes T. Arroyo (LTA) Inc., his family’s holding firm, of which he is the current company president.
He said he will fly back to the country no later than Jan 10, 2013. - Rappler.com