MANILA, Philippines – The two week search for the woman tagged in the multi-billion peso pork barrel scam is over. Just hours after a bounty is placed on her head, Janet Napoles surrenders.
Bea Cupin reports.
The saga of pork barrel queen Janet Napoles reaches its lowest point: police custody.
For two weeks, officials went on a manhunt for the woman at the center of the multi-billion peso pork barrel scam.
On August 14, a Makati court orders the arrest of Napoles and her brother Reynald Lim for illegally detaining their cousin-turned-whistleblower Benhur Luy.
On Wednesday, President Benigno Aquino puts up a P10-million reward for information on the fugitive.
Hours later, she surrenders to the president.
Interior Secretary Mar Roxas says it was Napoles’ lawyer, Lorna Kapunan who sent surrender feelers to Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda.
Lacierda met Kapunan and Napoles’ husband at Whitespace in Makati before proceeding to meet Napoles herself at a cemetery in Taguig City.
At 9:37 pm, she arrives in Malacañang.
There, she comes face to face with Aquino, who spoke with her and her lawyer for 10 minutes.
Napoles says she fears for her life but Malacañang does not explain the special treatment it gives the country’s most notorious fugitive.
Wednesday night, Roxas drops hints she could turn into a state witness a proposal that stirs anger in social media.
Opposition lawmakers fear Malacañang will use Napoles against the administration’s critics.
On Thursday, Roxas clarifies there are no discussions yet.
No, that would be pursuant to any legal process that will happen.
Napoles spends the night in Camp Crame in an office the President himself checked to make sure it was secure.
A Makati court is now ordering her transfer to the Makati City Jail although her lawyers ask the court to stop the transfer, citing dangers to her life.
SR SUPT REUBEN THEODORE SINDAC
PNP INFORMATION CHIEF
Yes, nandito pa si Janet Napoles sa Crame, and in a few, about five minutes, may isang team ng CIDG na luluwas papuntang Makati City Jail para i-survey at mag-conduct ng security survey and inspection doon sa projected na paglilipatan ni Janet Napoles. (Yes, Janet Napoles is still in Camp Crame. And in about five minutes, a team from CIDG will leave for the Makati City Jail to conduct a security survey and inspection there.)
Napoles’ brother remains at large, with a P5 million bounty on his head.
Bea Cupin Rappler Manila. – Rappler.com