Corona’s undervalued properties

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His SALN and the deeds of sale attached to his houses and lot don't match

MANILA, Philippines – At least 4 properties that impeached Chief Justice Renato Corona declared in his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) are undervalued, based on the deeds of absolute sale that he himself signed.

The condominium units and lot in Makati, Taguig and Quezon City — all under Corona’s name — are worth P42.1-M, based on the deeds of absolute sale attached to these properties. These 4 properties were acquired from 2003-2009. (Corona was appointed associate justice of the Supreme Court in 2002.)

However, Corona put the total value of these properties in his SALN at about P13.1-M only, equivalent to just a third of actual values based on deeds of sale.

These deeds of sale, uploaded in January together with the story on Corona’s properties by Rappler editor at large Marites Dañguilan-Vitug, were acquired from the Register of Deeds offices of cities where the properties are located.

Below is the list of under-declared properties.

Property  Year Acquired 
  Based on SALN 
  Based on Deed of Sale 
La Vista 2003 P3-M P16-M
Burgundy Plaza 2003 P921,000 P2.5-M
Bonifacio Ridge 2005 P2.4-M P9.1-M
Bellagio Tower 2009 P6.8-M P14.5-M

Copies of Corona’s SALN provide only very general information with no specific addresses, and instead only indicate land, house, condo, house and lot. We attached the names and other details of the properties, such as Bellagio and Bonifacio Ridge, based on the location and size of each property indicated in each SALN and the deeds of sale in our possession.

In 2005, the Coronas bought  a 113-sq-m condominium unit on the 19th floor of the Bonifacio Ridge, Taguig City for P9.1-M, according to the deed of sale. (View deed of sale and title of Bonifacio Ridge unit here.)

In his 2010 SALN, Corona valued this property at P2.4-M

The Coronas also bought a 303.05-sq-m penthouse condominium on the 38th floor of Bellagio Tower in the Fort, Taguig City, in 2009. The property was bought for P14.5-M, according to the deed of sale. (View the deed of sale and title of Bellagio Tower property here.)

In his 2010 SALN, Corona valued this property at P6.8-M.

In 2003, the Coronas purchased a 1,200-sq-m- lot in the exclusive residential enclave of La Vista in Quezon City, which he bought for P16-M, based on the deed of sale (View previous and current titles of La Vista property here.)

In his 2003 SALN, Corona valued the property at P3-M.

For the same year, the Coronas also bought a 62.7-sq-m condominium unit in One Burgundy Plaza along Katipunan Avenue, for P2.5-M, based on the deed of sale. (View deed of sale and title of the One Burgundy unit here.)

In his 2003 SALN, Corona however said he bought the property for P921,000.

One Burgundy Plaza in Katipunan Avenue The Columns in Makati City
Bellagio Tower in the Fort, Taguig City Bonifacio Ridge in The Fort, Taguig City

Corona’s SALNs from 2002 to 2010 were submitted by the Supreme Court Clerk of Court on Wednesday, January 18, upon orders of the Senate sitting as an impeachment court.

The impeachment court had summoned Clerk of Court Enriquetta Esguerra-Vidal to bring the copies of Corona’s SALN to the trial, which she did. But at the witness stand, Vidal initially refused to show the copies, saying she needed clearance from the High Court justices to do so.

The senators eventually prevailed on her.

It’s the first time in 22 years that the SALN of a Chief Justice has been made public, according to prosecution spokesperson Rep Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara. –

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