MANILA, Philippines – Lawyer Jessica Lucila “Gigi” Reyes, detained over charges of plunder and graft in connection with the pork barrel scam, was pulled out of the Taguig hospital Friday night, July 11, after she complained of chest pains.
Inspector Aris Villaester, spokesperson for the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology-National Capital Region, said Reyes would be transferred to the Philippine Heart Center in Quezon City.
“Ito ay decision ng authorities ng Taguig Pateros District Hospital,” he said. “May kulang po sila sa mga gamit o apparatus for Gigi Reyes’ medical assistance or medical condition.” (This is a decision of authorities at the Taguig Pateros District Hospital. They don’t have all the equipment or apparatus needed for Gigi Reyes’ medical condition.)
He added: “Iniiwasan natin na ma-stress siya.” (We’re avoiding stressing her out.)
Reyes, former chief of staff of Senator Juan Ponce Enrile, stayed for a few nights at a detention facility of the anti-graft court Sandiganbayan this week, after the Quezon City jail administrator said she could not be accommodated in their overcrowded cells.
On Thursday, July 10, the Sandiganbayan ordered Reyes to be committed to the BJMP facility in Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City. Reyes did not get to spend the night there, however, after she had panic attacks upon seeing the facility. She was rushed to the Taguig hospital.
Doctors did not allow her to attend her arraignment Friday morning, as she was reportedly very weak. Her lawyer, however, filed a motion to have her immediately transferred either to the Philippine Heart Center in Quezon City or the Sta Ana General Hospital in Manila, where her doctors are connected. (READ: Gigi Reyes seeks hospital transfer)
Reyes is accused of earning millions of pesos in kickbacks for ensuring that the discretionary development funds of her boss, Enrile, would go to bogus non-governmental organizations linked to Janet Napoles, the alleged mastermind of the scam. – with a report from Bea Cupin/Rappler.com