The “Marcos Magnanakaw” mainstream narrative that divided the Philippines for 35 years SHOULD NOT BE PRESUMED through news lips, stories, memes, quotes, etc., BUT SHOULD BE PROVEN IN COURT.
Stealing from the nation’s treasury is a SERIOUS CRIMINAL OFFENSE that needs to be proven in a CRIMINAL TRIAL.
To cement the “Marcos Magnanakaw” narrative is to get a final and executory Supreme Court decision in a crime involving stealing from the nation’s coffers. To prove the Marcoses indeed stole their wealth from the nation’s coffers, you need to have FORMIDABLE EVIDENCE to prove this allegation and secure a “beyong reasonable doubt” judgment.
As of January 2022, NO ONE has shown a final and executory Supreme Court decision in a case involving stealing from the nation’s coffers.
That means of all the cases filed against Ferdinand and Imelda, PCGG and the OSG could not prove that the source of the Marcos wealth is public funds.
Why are we looking for a final and executory Supreme Court criminal conviction in a crime that involves stealing from the nation’s coffers?
The final and executory Supreme Court conviction in a crime that involves stealing from the nation’s coffers will END all the arguments regarding the Marcos’ “ill-gotten wealth”.
The Marcos critics claim they have the “avalanche of evidence” to prove the Marcoses have stolen money from the nation’s funds, yet they COULDN’T CONVICT the Marcoses of a criminal charge that is final and executory in the last 35 years.
We used to subscribe to this mainstream narrative as well, and we also accepted these “avalanche of evidence” peddled to us by mainstream media and the politicians without questions. We simply accepted everything BLINDLY as facts.
But these pieces of evidence WERE NOT ABLE TO PROVE IN COURT that there were monies stolen from the Filipinos.
All the PCGG did was sequester assets through Cory’s Executive Order 1 and use CIVIL proceedings to forfeit these assets. These civil cases didn’t even discuss the crime of pagnanakaw.
We want to hold a position that is WELL-INFORMED, and the best source for a well-informed decision are the FACTS of a court decision, not the facts interpreted by historians, politicians, citizens, or mainstream media.
The facts of a COURT DECISION are legitimately PEER-REVIEWED, CROSS-EXAMINED, and VERIFIED by no other than the Supreme Court JUSTICES.
The interpretation of the facts INSIDE A COURT trumps all the interpretations and assumptions of historians, politicians, mainstream media, citizens, and legal students OUTSIDE OF COURT.
That’s why we want to make an informed position using court decisions, WHERE FACTS CANNOT BE CORRUPTED.
This is the reason why A FINAL AND EXECUTORY CRIMINAL COURT CONVICTION in a crime that involves raiding the nation’s coffers. This will settle the issue that has divided our nation in the last 35 years.
Adhering to court-examined and court-reviewed facts (the best source of facts) is NOT revisionism; IT IS A SEARCH FOR TRUTH. It is NOT apologism, it is a search for a well-informed, court-based position.
CRITICS: There are 3 existing Supreme Court civil forfeiture cases that prove Marcos stole money from the Filipinos
Thirty-five years and billions of pesos of taxpayers’ money that funded PCGG, all the Marcos accusers can produce to prove their “Marcos Magnanakaw” allegation are the Supreme Court CIVIL FORFEITURE CASES, namely:
– G.R. No. 152154 (2003) – https://elibrary.judiciary.gov.ph/thebookshelf/showdocs/1/47204
– G.R. No. 189434 (2014) – https://elibrary.judiciary.gov.ph/thebookshelf/showdocs/1/56652
– G.R. No. 213027 (2017) – https://elibrary.judiciary.gov.ph/thebookshelf/showdocs/1/62728
What are civil forfeiture cases?
A civil forfeiture case is an IN REM (against the property) court proceeding brought against property that was derived from or used to commit an offense, rather than against a person who committed an offense.
Unlike criminal forfeiture, there is no criminal conviction required, although the government is still required to prove in court that the property was linked to criminal activity. The proceeding allows the court to gather anyone with an interest in the property in the same case and resolve all the issues with the property at one time.
In a civil forfeiture case, the government is the plaintiff, the property is the defendant, and any person who claims an interest in the property is a claimant.
A criminal forfeiture case, on the other hand, where an in personam (against the person) action against a defendant that includes notice of the intent to forfeit property in a criminal indictment. A criminal conviction is required, and forfeiture is part of the defendant’s sentence.
Criminal forfeiture is limited to the property interests of the defendant, including any proceeds earned by the defendant’s illegal activity. Criminal forfeiture is generally limited to the property involved in the particular counts on which the defendant is convicted.
Republic Act 1379: The basis of forfeiting the assets of the Marcoses
The basis of the civil forfeiture cases against the Marcoses is the violation of the forfeiture law, the Republic Act 1379 or AN ACT DECLARING FORFEITURE IN FAVOR OF THE STATE ANY PROPERTY FOUND TO HAVE BEEN UNLAWFULLY ACQUIRED BY ANY PUBLIC OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE AND PROVIDING FOR THE PROCEEDINGS THEREFOR.
RA 1379 states that if a government official cannot explain their wealth beyond the amount of their salary or known income, there is a PRESUMPTION that the unexplained wealth is “unlawfully acquired”.
Take note that the operative word here is PRESUMPTION, meaning it is an idea that is taken to be true, and often used as the basis for other ideas, although it is not known for certain.
Since the Marcoses were not able to explain the assets in question in these civil forfeiture cases, by virtue of RA 1379, the Republic (represented by the Office of the SG) PRESUMED these assets were unlawfully acquired, and threfore forfeited these assets in favor of the Republic.
But since civil forfeiture cases are only IN REM proceedings, there is no criminal libility in these cases. The criminal action of “Pagnanakaw sa Kaban ng Bayan” was not even discussed in these cases.
Regardless, the Office of the Solicitor General and PCGG still need to prove that Marcos’ unexplained wealth came from Kaban ng Bayan, and in these cases, they did not.
These civil forfeiture cases don’t answer WHO, WHAT, HOW MUCH, WHEN, WHERE, AND HOW the public funds ended up in the hands of the Marcoses and the Swiss banks.
Most importantly, YOU CANNOT FIND in the DISPOSITIVE PORTIONS of decisions that say, “Guilty beyond reasonable doubt”, which proves guilt in the crime of “pagnakakaw sa kaban”. That’s because forfeiture cases are CIVIL IN NATURE and do not determine the criminal culpability of the respondent (in this case, the Marcoses).
CORY AQUINO’S EXECUTIVE ORDER 1
How is it possible that Cory’s first order of business when she became president was the enactment of Executive Order 1? She came into power on Feb 25, 1986 and EO 1 was enacted on Feb 28, 1986 with the following clauses:
“WHEREAS, vast resources of the government have been amassed by former President Ferdinand E. Marcos, his immediate family, relatives, and close associates both here and abroad;
“WHEREAS, there is an urgent need to recover all ill-gotten wealth.”
That’s three days after the EDSA revolution. How did the Cory admin determine Marcos “amassed vast resources of government” in just three days?
THE TERM “ILL-GOTTEN WEALTH” WAS QUESTIONED BY RENATO CONSTANTINO
Five months after the creation of PCGG (by Cory’s Executive Order 1, three days after EDSA People Power of 1986), the catchphrase “ill-gotten wealth” remained ill defined. This drew a reaction from the civil libertarian, Renato Constantino.
“…the scope of what comprises ill-gotten wealth must be clearly delineated.
“Does it cover only Marcos and his cronies? One very valid objection to the Executive Order which created the PCGG is the fact that in so far as sequestration is concerned, the order appears to apply only to ‘Marcos, his immediate family, relatives, subordinates, and close associates,’ and may not be applicable to others (including present government officials and their own close associates) who may also have acquired ill-gotten wealth.
“Ill-gotten wealth is simply stealing the people’s money from government coffers. Ill-gotten wealth is money coming out of graft or commissions given to the power holders. How does the PCGG propose to distinguish between what is legitimate acquisition of assets (even if they were concessions by the granting power) from the actual wealth of the possessor?”
The PCGG thought it knew what hidden wealth was, and where it might be found. It jumped into action with relish. It sequestered 218 companies with equities worth Php10.7 billion in the first 100 days, plus Php1.837 billion worth of jewelry, aircraft and motor vehicles.
Then, PCGG started having trouble with the courts (which insisted on due process) and the inquisitive press (which insisted on transparency) as well.