The Marcos family’s attempt to take control of their assets being held by the government has been rejected by the Sandiganbayan.
In a resolution, promulgated on Jan. 25, the anti-graft court’s Third Division, denied the motions filed by former first lady Imelda Romualdez Marcos and her daughter Irene Marcos-Araneta.
The Marcoses asked for the issuance of a writ of execution on the properties denominated as “frozen accounts, surrendered by virtue of compromise agreements, sequestered (but) not in the PCGG (Presidential Commission on Good Government) custody, and sequestered under the PCGG’s control and supervision.”
But the Sandiganbayan denied the plea “for lack of merit” and sought to clarify the status of some assets and properties pertinent to the case.
The court said it could not rule on properties that had already been recovered by the government or transferred to third persons, or those that have been the subject of court decisions and compromise agreements.
“What remains to be determined, however, is the list of properties which are included in the dismissal of the Third Amended Complaint for failure of the plaintiff to prove its allegations by preponderance of evidence,” it added.
Subject to the finality of the decision, the court, meanwhile lifted the sequestration orders earlier issued on at least 14 properties. It also recognized the properties without sequestration orders and those that remain under the full control and supervision of the Marcoses.
Associate Justice Michael Frederick Musngi wrote the ruling with Associate Justices Maria Theresa Mendoza-Arcega and Maryann Corpus-Manalac concurring.
In their motion, the Marcoses asked for a writ of execution of their assets “considering that there was allegedly no evidence that this trust account was ill-gotten.”
The Marcoses added that they did not give consent with respect to the compromise agreements on the surrendered assets.
In response, the anti-graft court said that while the appeal was “timely in the instant case,” the prayer for the issuance of a writ of execution “cannot prosper as the judgment or order that disposes of the action is not yet final.”
“The fact that more than three decades have passed before the said case was decided is not a good reason considering that numerous factors have contributed to said length of period, which even includes the acquisition of jurisdiction over the defendants on different dates, the inclusion of additional defendants after the admission of the Second and Third Amended Complaints, and the filing of numerous motions and petitions, among others. The defendants also offered no proof or reason as to how the properties subject of this case are being dissipated,” the Sandiganbayan said.