Provide your email for confirmation

Tell us a bit about yourself

country *
province *

why we ask about location

Please provide your email address

Login

To share your thoughts

Don't have an account?

Login with email

Check your inbox

We just sent a link to your inbox. Click the link to continue signing in. Can’t find it? Check your spam & junk mail.

Didn't get a link?

Sign up

Ready to get started

Already have an account?

Sign up with email

By signing up you agree to Rappler’s Terms and Conditions and Privacy

Check your inbox

We just sent a link to your inbox. Click the link to continue registering. Can’t find it? Check your spam & junk mail.

Didn't get a link?

Join Rappler+

How often would you like to pay?

Monthly Subscription

Your payment was interrupted

Exiting the registration flow at this point will mean you will loose your progress

Your payment didn’t go through

Exiting the registration flow at this point will mean you will loose your progress

Bong Revilla released: 'May hustisya pa sa ating bansa'

MANILA, Philippines – After 4 years and 5 months of detention for plunder charges, former senator Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr walked free early Friday evening, December 7, from the Camp Crame Detention Center. 

The court sheriff arrived at the police camp at around 5:30 pm to serve release order. At exactly 6:13 pm, he stepped out of the compound, which he used to share with fellow pork barrel scam accused and close friend, former Jinggoy Estrada.

"After 4 years and almost 6 months, finally makakalabas na rin ako, at lumalabas na 'yung katotohanan. Nagpapasalamat ako at merong hustisya pa rin sa ating bansa," Revilla said on the verge of tears as reporters, cameramen, and cops swirled around him.

(After 4 years and almost 6 months, I can finally come out, and the truth has come out. I am thankful that there's still justice in the country.)

A special division of the anti-graft court Sandiganbayan on Friday morning acquitted Revilla of charges that he pocketed more than P200 million in commissions from his Priority Development Assistance Fund, which was diverted to fake non-governmental organizations. 

Revilla's co-accused – his former chief of staff in the Senate, lawyer Richard Cambe, and alleged pork barrel scam brains Janet Lim Napoles – were declared guilty. The wording of the court decision is unclear if Revilla is among those ordered to return the P124.5 million in misused funds from his Senate office.

In a phone interview with the ABS-CBN News Channel, Revilla's wife, Bacoor Mayor Lani Mercado Revilla, said the former senator couldn't believe he was finally free. "Totoo ba ito? Nananaginip ba ako?" he reportedly said.

Revilla's son, Cavite Vice Governor Jolo Revilla told reporters the family would go straight to the Imus Cathedral for thanksgiving Friday night, and will then pay respects at the tomb of Revilla's mother at the family-owned Angelus Eternal Gardens, also in Imus, Cavite.

Revilla, president of the Lakas-NUCD party, is running for senator in the 2019 elections. – Rappler.com

READ related stories:

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.

image