Senator Ejercito tells Sandigan: Hong Kong travel is for my wife
The camp of suspended Sen. JV Ejercito is now asking the Sandiganbayan to allow him to clarify that he wanted to go to Hong Kong to accompany his wife in processing her retirement benefits.
During yesterday’s hearing, Ejercito’s lawyer said they will file a supplemental motion to his original request for travel permission, which apparently omitted the reason for doing so.
Ejercito’s original motion on Tuesday stated that he would like to travel to Hong Kong from Oct. 14 to 16 “for a family vacation” with wife Maria Hyacinth and son Julio Jose.
Lawyer Althea Raypon told the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division that “in addition to the reasons stated in the motion,” Ejercito wanted to accompany his wife as she was not able to process her retirement benefits from Cathay Pacific when she was undergoing chemotherapy.
Raypon said this purpose was actually mentioned in the attached itinerary, even if it was omitted from the motion itself.
A perusal of the document, however, revealed that the Ejercitos are scheduled to go to the Immigration Tower for the “renewal of Mrs. Ejercito’s Hong Kong Identification Card.”
Ejercito and his wife were present during the hearing.
Prosecutors are slated to file their supplemental comment within three days of receiving the amended request.
They had earlier opposed Ejercito’s request as unjustified because his travel plans appeared to be “purely for leisure and recreational.”
In a related development, the Fifth Division also submitted for resolution the matter of Ejercito’s demurrer to the graft case.
Ejercito faces separate charges of graft and technical malversation before the Fifth and Sixth Divisions over the purchase of high-powered firearms using calamity funds.
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