It seems like Senator Antonio Trillanes IV has more dirt on Davao City mayor Rodrigo Duterte, and isn’t stopping at exposing the alleged existence of Davao City mayor Rodrigo Duterte’s bank accounts and undeclared wealth.
Yesterday, May 1, he accused the presidential candidate of facilitating the release of eight Chinese nationals involved in illegal drug trade back in 2005.
In an interview with the radio dzMM, Trillanes revealed that these eight foreigners were among the 10 people arrested on January 1, 2005, a day after a major shabu lab in Davao was busted.
He explained that Duterte, who was then in his 15 years as Davao City mayor, freed the eight prisoners “in the spirit of Chinese New Year”:
"Alam niyo po ang ginawa nitong Mayor Duterte na pinapangalandakan niyang ipinapapatay niya iyung drug lords, inarbor po niya iyung walong Intsik, Chinese nationals. Ang dahilan niya po ay in the spirit of Chinese New Year,"
(Did you know that even though Mayor Duterte promises to kill all these drug lords, he set free 8 Chinese nationals. He said he did this in the spirit of Chinese New Year.)
Trillanes criticized Duterte for admitting to killing petty criminals but leaving out the alleged leaders of criminal organizations in his war against crime.
The senator also hinted that Duterte only orders the death of criminals when it suits him. However, he adds that he is not yet ready to explain it any further.
“Dito niyo makikita na hindi niya ipinapatay iyung drug lord, inaarbor. Pero ngayon, may mga pinapatay ding pusher. Tanong dito e baka naman iyung kompetensya ang ipinapapatay.”
(We see here that he doesn’t kill drug lords. But now, he kills pushers. The issue here is maybe he’s killing off the competition.)
"Pag-isipan natin iyan. Pero, wala pa ako doon. Hindi pa ako ready.”
(Let’s think about that. But I’m not there yet. I’m not ready.)
In a Philippine Star report on the release of the detainees, Duterte was quoted to say that some of them were either too young or too old to be deprived of liberty.
Duterte also reportedly said that all eight Chinese nationals, as well as the parents of alleged shabu lab financier Allan Sy, were cleared of any participation in narcotics manufacturing.
The mayor believed that the only mistake some of them made was the possible violation of immigration laws due to their prolonged stay in the Philippines.
Furthermore, he was also reportedly concerned that their continued detention would have unfavorable repercussions on many Filipinos staying in China.
The eight alleged drug lords were found and rounded up in a row of apartments in Bo. Obrero where Sy and his family were residing.
In addition to their capture, equipments and chemicals used in the manufacture of shabu were also uncovered in Sy’s two warehouses in Barangay Dumoy.
The raided drug laboratories supplied over 100 kilos of high-grade shabu, with a street value of over P300 million.
Among those set free were Sy’s parents Lin Qiong Xio and Shi Chunchang, who were in the city for a quick visit. The other six were identified as Zhenyi Lu, Yashu Gou, Wendun Zheng, Lu Zixiao, Shi Chun fa and Cai Lungna.
Bombshell after bombshell
It’s less than a week before the May 9 presidential election, and Trillanes has been busy dropping bombshells, starting by claiming that Duterte has undeclared accounts at the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) – Julia Vargas Avenue, and they contain similarly undeclared wealth amounting to P227.41 million (not P211 million, as earlier reported,) last 2014.
Last Friday, Trillanes added that a total of P2.407 billion was funneled into 17 accounts of the Davao City mayor in three banks, from 2006 to 2015.
Over the nine-year period, Duterte is alleged to have held seven joint accounts with his daughter Sara at the BPI branch in Julia Cargas Avenue, Pasig City; nine joint accounts at the BPI Edsa Greenhills branch, and one joint account at Banco de oro Unibank-1 in Davao City.
The Philippine Daily Inquirer reported on the same day that the presidential candidate’s BPI Julia Vargas account alone allegedly received P1.74 billion in total deposits and transfers. Meanwhile, the joint accounts at BPI Edsa Greenhills also received P667 million, and the BDO-Unibank account had P534 million.
Among these transactions, seven deposits amounting to P193 million was apparently discovered to be credited to the BPI Julia Vargas account on Duterte’s 69 birthday.
Although he was initially unwilling, Duterte has agreed to open his bank accounts to public scrutiny at the BPI Julia Vargas branch, but his camp insists Trillanes must first provide an affidavit and name his sources before it can happen.
PDP-Laban spokesperson Paola Alvarez said it is unfair for Duterte to disclose his bank accounts details if Trillanes won’t reveal the sources of his information, which alleges that the mayor has millions of pesos in hidden wealth.
The representatives of Duterte and Trillanes will meet at the BPI Julia Vargas branch today.