Imelda Marcos aide’s trial over soon—PCGG

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02:52 AM January 9th, 2013

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January 9th, 2013 02:52 AM

PCGG Chairman Andres Bautista said the art theft and tax fraud trial of Vilma Bautista in New York should be over in a few months. AFP/TED ALJIBE

While ill-gotten-wealth cases against the Marcoses and their cronies have been languishing in Philippine courts the past 26 years, a case involving part of the Marcos loot in the United States should be resolved within the year.

Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) Chairman Andres Bautista said the art theft and tax fraud trial of Vilma Bautista, the erstwhile social secretary and confidante of former first lady Imelda Marcos, in New York should be over in a few months.

Vilma Bautista and her two nephews were arrested in November in New York after they were found to have sold three valuable paintings believed to have been part of the Marcos assets but which disappeared in 1986 after the downfall of the dictatorship.

The New York District Attorney’s Office charged Vilma Bautista and her nephews with illegally conspiring to possess and sell valuable paintings that they did not own, and keeping the proceeds for themselves and hiding them from tax authorities.

“We were told the case will be finished by 2013. They hope to finish the trial in two months,” the PCGG chairman said. Dona Z. Pazzibugan

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