Former Misamis Occidental Gov. Loreto Leo Ocampos on Tuesday asserted his innocence against graft charges and vowed to elevate his case to the Supreme Court.
Ocampos said he was hopeful the Sandiganbayan decision on the marine park controversy would be reversed.
“In view of the Sandiganbayan ruling, I will appeal the case to the Supreme Court. Let’s be clear though that the ruling is not yet final and executory,” Ocampos said in a press statement.
He is convinced the case would be dismissed by the high tribunal.
“I’m very confident that eventually this politically-motivated case hurled against me will be dismissed. I will fight this case up to the Supreme Court and I know that at the end of the day I will emerge victorious,” he explained.
He also believed that the people of Misamis Occidental fully support him and knew the truth.
“I’m appealing to the people of Misamis Occidental not to succumb to political whims just to destroy my person and credibility as a leader. I know this new ruling will be used against me as the 2019 midterm election nears,” the returning governor candidate added.
The case was filed by on March 15, 2011 by Oscar Visitacion, a known ally of then Ozamiz City Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog, a suspected narco-politician who was killed amidst the anti-drug war campaign of the current administration.
There was no immediately available comment from Visitacion.
“I want to reiterate that this was a politically-motivated case against me because of my resolve to end the reign of terror created by illegal drugs, illegal gambling and political dynasties in our beloved province. Maitatawid natin ito mga kakabayan ko
and soon the rule of law will be restored again in our beloved province,” Ocampos said.
In December 2018, the same court cleared Ocampos of malversation charges in the mentioned marine park controversy due to lack of proof that public funds were misappropriated for private use.
“Wherefore, premises considered, the Court finds and holds…accused Ocampos and Akhavan not guilty of malversation under Article 217 of the Revised Penal Code in Criminal Case No. SB-15-CRM-0088,” stated the 57-page court decision promulgated on Dec. 5, 2018.