The prosecution’s disclosure on Thursday that it would be unable to present proof of Chief Justice Renato Corona’s supposed 45 properties has put it in “a very difficult situation,” according to the defense.
“It’s good that [this is] being brought up now. The truth is now out,” Ramon Esguerra, one of Corona’s lawyers, told the Philippine Daily Inquirer during a break in the 11th day of the trial.
Esguerra said some of the supposed properties were “actually not [registered] under Corona’s name, particularly the one in McKinley Hill [in Taguig City].”
Asked about the effect of the admission of the House lead prosecutor, Representative Niel Tupas Jr., vis-à-vis the allegations stated in Article 2, Esguerra said: “I don’t want to make any judgment. But they are now faced with a very difficult situation.”
In reply to a question, Tranquil Salvador III, spokesperson for the defense, said the prosecution’s admission was unexpected.
“We did not expect it because we just live by the day,” Salvador said. “But we are surprised that sometimes some things happen that favor us. We don’t claim victory, but this is good for us and the country.”
Salvador also said it was “a happy day” for the defense “because we have senators who are able to rise beyond political affiliation.”
“We hope this will continue in the succeeding days,” he told reporters.
Eduardo de los Angeles, also of the defense, pointed out that Corona only owned five properties “and three of four parking slots.”
“We also checked the list when [the prosecutors] claimed that Corona had 45 properties. We found out that there was double counting and that some titles were already canceled,” De los Angeles said. “That’s why we don’t understand why the canceled titles were still in the list.”
De los Angeles said the prosecutors should have presented an official of the Land Registration Authority (LRA) if they wanted to prove that Corona was indeed the owner of the properties listed.
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