A few minutes ago, the Sandiganbayan promulgated its verdict in the cases against former President Joseph “Erap” Ejercito Estrada, Senator Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada and Atty. Edward Serapio. President Estrada is NOT guilty for the charge of perjury, while both Senator Jinggoy Estrada and Atty. Serapio are NOT guilty with the charge of plunder.
The Sandiganbayan, however, ruled that former President Estrada is guilty of Plunder. The penalty imposed is reclusion perpetua, with the accessory penalty of civil interdiction and perpetual absolute disqualification, as well as forfeiture or confiscation of instruments and proceeds of the offense. These properties are:
(1) The total amount of Five Hundred Forty Two Million Seven Hundred Ninety One Thousand Pesos (P545,291,000.00), with interest and income earned, inclusive of the amount of Two Hundred Million Pesos (P200,000,000.00), deposited in the name and account of the Erap Muslim Youth Foundation.
(2) The amount of One Hundred Eighty Nine Million Pesos (P189,000,000.00), inclusive of interests and income earned, deposited in the Jose Velarde account.
(3) The real property consisting of a house and lot dubbed as “Boracay Mansion” located at #100 11th Street, New Manila, Quezon City.
Former President Estrada has fifteen (15) days to file a motion for reconsideration, which motion shall be decided by the Sandiganbayan within thirty (30) days from being submitted for resolution. His defense panel could also opt to file an appeal directly with the Supreme Court.
Please refer to the related discussion on The Law on Plunder or its definition.