Atty Levi Baligod: Where is the probe into #PDAFscam headed?
MANILA, Philippines - Rappler talks with Levi Baligod, legal counsel of Benhur Luy and the other whistleblowers in the government's investigation into the alleged multi-billion-peso pork barrel scam.
Affidavits submitted by state witness Benhur Luy to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) named at least 5 senators and 23 congressmen who had allegedly colluded with his cousin and former employer Janet Lim Napoles to channel their Priority Development Assistance Fund to ghost projects in exchange for hefty kickbacks.
These initial testimonies provided leads for a more expansive probe by the NBI.
On September 12, Luy appeared at the Senate hearing on the scam. He gave a detailed account of how public funds went to Napoles and the lawmakers, including cash deliveries, bank transfers, and authorized forging of signatures.
Four days after, on September 16, the justice department filed plunder charges before the Ombudsman against senators with the biggest amounts of illegally diverted funds. The National Bureau of Investigation provided the Ombudsman with evidence, specifically against Senators Jose "Jinggoy" Estrada, Juan Ponce Enrile, and Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr. The 3 senators are among 38 lawmakers, officials of government agencies, and private individuals who face criminal charges.
Justice Secretary Leila de Lima says the charges filed with the Ombudsman were just the first of several batches.
Baligod, a co-complainant with the NBI, talked to Rappler about the recent developments in the case and shared his insights into how the case will pan out.
Watch the interview below.