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Department of Justice ends probe vs Isidro Lapeaa.

Department of Justice ends probe vs Isidro Lapentildea !-- -- Edu Punay (The Philippine Star) - March 13, 2019 - 12:00am MANILA, Philippines The Department of Justice (DOJ) yesterday concluded its preliminary investigation on criminal charges against former Bureau of Customs commissioner Isidro Lapentildea over the drug shipments that slipped past the BOC under his watch last year. The investigating panel, led by Assistant State Prosecutor Mary Jane Sytat, conducted a clarificatory hearing following the inspection last week of the magnetic lifters in Cavite and Manila International Container Port (MICP) that allegedly carried the multibillion-peso shabu shipments.

The case stemmed from the discovery of two abandoned magnetic lifters, which contained 355 kilos of shabu worth P2.4 billion, at the Port of Manila in August 2018. A day later, similar lifters were discovered abandoned at a warehouse in General Mariano Alvarez, Cavite. The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) believes the lifters contained 1.

6 tons of shabu worth P11 billion. With the conclusion of the hearings, the DOJ said the criminal and administrative charges filed by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) against Lapentildea and other respondents last January are deemed submitted for resolution.

Lapentildea, now Technical Education and Skills Development Authority head, was charged with violation of Republic Act 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act), dereliction of duty and grave misconduct over his failure to act on the drug shipments and personally submit his counter-affidavit. He was previously cleared in the fact-finding investigation by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

The NBI filed the charges after its fact-finding probe established a link between the MICP shipment and the magnetic lifters seized in Cavite, citing "distinct similarities and peculiar coincidences" as proof that one syndicate is behind both sets of lifters. In a hearing last Feb.

21, Lapentildea denied the allegations and sought the dismissal of the complaint. However, he did not give copy of his counter-affidavit to the media.

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Publication:Philippines Star (Manila, Philippines)
Geographic Code:9PHIL
Date:Mar 12, 2019
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