IMPEACHMENT TRIAL: Thursday, February 16, 2012

At 2:24 p.m., the hearing was called to order with Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile Presiding.

 

THE PRESIDING OFFICER  The continuation of the impeachment trial of the Honorable Chief Justice Renato C. Corona of the Supreme Court is hereby called to order.  We shall be led in prayer by Senator Bong Revilla.

(Prayer by Senator Revilla)

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Secretary, please call the roll of senators.

THE SECRETARY GENERAL.  The honorable Senators Angara; Arroyo; Cayetano, Allan Peter ‘Compañero’; Cayetano, Pia; Defensor-Santiago; Drilon, Ejercito-Estrada; Escudero; Guingona; Honasan; Lacson; Lapid; Legarda; Marcos; Osmeña, Pangilinan, Pimentel; Recto; Revilla; Sotto; Trillanes; Villar; the Senate President Enrile.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  With  22 Senator-judges present in the Chamber, the Chair declares the presence of a quorum.  (Gavel)

Majority Floor Leader

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, may I ask the Sergeant-at-Arms to make the proclamation.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Sergeant-at-Arms may proceed.

THE SEARGENT-AT ARMS.  All persons are commanded to keep silent under pain of penalty while the Senate is seating in trial on the articles of impeachment against Chief Justice Renato C. Corona.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Majority Floor Leader.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, I move that we dispense with the reading of the February 15, 2012 Journal of the Senate, seating as an Impeachment Court and consider the same as approved.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Is there any objection?  (Silence)  There being none, the February 15, 2012 Journal of the court is hereby approved.  (Gavel)

Majority Floor Leader.

The Secretary may now call the case.

THE SECRETARY GENERAL.  Case No. 002-2011 in the matter of impeachment trial of honourable Chief Justice Renato C. Corona.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Majority Floor Leader.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, may we ask the parties and/or their respective counsel to enter their appearances.

REP. TUPAS.  Good afternoon, Your Honors.

For the House Prosecution panel, same appearances, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Noted. The defense.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  For the defense, Your Honor, same appearance.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Noted.

Majority Floor Leader.

SEN. SOTTO.  Yes, Mr. President, we are still in Article 2, we have pending questions from Senator-judges to witnesses, Ms. Annabelle Tionson, branch manager of PS Bank, Katipunan branch, and the representative of the BPI, Ayala Branch.  And also, the president of the PS Bank, Mr. President.  So, may we ask the prosecution for the continuation.

REP. TUPAS.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The prosecution may proceed to call their witness.

REP. TUPAS.  Yesterday, the president of PS Bank was commanded by the honroable Presiding Officer to come back this afternoon.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, with all due respect, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Majority Leader.

SEN. SOTTO.  May we recognize Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Lady Senator from Iloilo, Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago is recognized.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Thank you.  May I pose this question to the lead prosecutor, please.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Proceed.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Mr. Prosecutor, is the witness on the witness stand your witness for the prosecution, the person who is testifying that the attachments, meaning to say, what appear to be facts or Xerox copies of the application form of the defendant for his bank accounts, are these the documents that you referred to in your supplemental petition?

REP. TUPAS.  That’s the document that we refer to.  That’s Annex A but we did not mark it as our evidence, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  On that point, may I please just enter into the record the rule.  The rule is that evidence must be offered at the time that the testimony of the witness has reached that point.  We don’t have to wait for a formal offer in writing of the evidence of the prosecution or of the defense.  The offer of evidence is always at the time when the document is physically presented to the court.  That is just a parenthetical view.  Now, I would like to know this—that witness is your witness, isn’t that so?  And your witness appears to have turned into a hostile witness because your categorization(?) or your argument is in the prosecution panel, your argument is that your attachments to the supplemental petition are genuine and your witness is testifying  that they are fake that is why this afternoon we are all holding our breath so that we can compare the two copies.  Isn’t that so?

REP. TUPAS.  With respect to the two witnesses, namely Ms. Tiongson and Mr. Pascual, they are our witnesses insofar as to produce the documents that we have asked.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.   Right.

REP. TUPAS.  That those are the documents in possession and marked as exhibit.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Counsel, the question to you, do you want these witnesses to be considered as hostile witnesses?

REP. TUPAS.  At this point, no, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So you are not treating them as hostile witnesses.

REP. TUPAS.  As of now, Your Honor, no.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  Alright.  So if he later produces documents which tend to prove their allegations that their original copies in their bank vaults that they are now going to produce before us this afternoon are correct and there are discrepancies as has already been testified by these witnesses between your attachments which purport to be copies of the originals and the originals that they will bring, then in effect, they will turn into hostile witnesses.  Isn’t that so because they will then controvert your own allegation?

REP. TUPAS.  That is correct, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  In that case, then they will turn into hostile witnesses.

REP. TUPAS.  Yes.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And may I warn the witness that if you do not consider these witnesses as hostile witnesses, any adverse statement made by them adverse to your position as prosecution will be binding on you.

REP. TUPAS.  Yes, Your Honor.

THEP PRESIDING OFFICER.  So it is a decision you have to make.

REP. TUPAS.  That is why, Your Honor, as of now, our decision is we don’t consider the witnesses hostile but we just reserve later on the prerogative of the prosecution to make the necessary action, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  Well, I’m just trying to help you, counsel.  This is sometimes allowed for a judge when the proceedings tend to be one-sided.  I’m just going to enter into the record the rules on evidence concerning a witness who happens to become hostile in the course of her testimony.  If he becomes a hostile witness, then you file a motion with our Presiding Officer to consider her a hostile witness.  That way you gain the right to impeach her or you gain the right to ask her leading questions even on direct.  But if you insist now that he is your witness and never ask that he be considered as adverse, then you cannot impeach your own witness.  You will then be bound later on by the comparisons on whether the two sets of documents are fake or genuine, you will be bound by what he says.  That is my warning to you.  This is just trying to be helpful to you.

REP. TUPAS.  Thank you very much, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You understand the rule with respect to this witness.

REP. TUPAS.  We do understand, Your Honor.  Thank you for that, Lady Senator from Iloilo.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  Just to avoid further argumentation later on this point.  Counsel, do you notice that when a person or a witness testifies on the witness stand about a record, that in effect is testifying on—is testimony on hearsay?  Because you did not—he or she did not actually perform the entries there.  She’s just presenting some other person’s work.  So, in effect, she is presenting hearsay evidence.

Now witness, let me bring you to our happy memories of the UP College of Law.  What did you learn in law school about hearsay evidence?  It is generally prohibited except …

REP. TUPAS.  Except the exceptions to the rules.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  All right.  What exception are you going to cite now in favour or your witnesses since you claim they are prosecution witnesses?

REP. TUPAS.  We reserve that—We will certify that later, Your Honor.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  No, the answer to the question is that, you lay the foundation so that if even you did not accomplish the forms herself, the evidence shall be admitted because this is an exception to the hearsay rule.  So when you call the witness, I will request the Majority Leader that I should be called first so that I will show you, counsel, how to lay the foundation.

I read the Journal yesterday, and you do not do that.  If you do not lay the foundation for the authenticity of a document, which in effect constitutes hearsay, then cannot be admitted.

I will wait for you to call your witness.

REP. TUPAS.  Thank you so much for that from—Lady from Iloilo.  We appreciate that.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You should thank the Lady Senator from Iloilo for guiding the prosecution in the presentation of their witnesses.

Your first witness.

REP. TUPAS.  As mentioned, Your Honor, yesterday, the president of the PS Bank, Mr. Pascual Garcia, was commanded by the honourable Presiding Officer to appear today at two o’clock in the afternoon.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Is he here now?

REP. TUPAS.  We were informed that—Yes, he is here now, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Bring him in and put him on the witness stand under the same oath.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Majority Floor Leader.

SEN. SOTTO.  We have a not really an objection but a point being raised by one of the Members of the court, Senator Osmeña.  May we recognize him.  I believe he thinks that it should be the branch manager who should be called in first.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  What’s the pleasure of the Gentleman from Cebu?

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Thank you, Mr. President.  If you will recall yesterday, we Miss Tiongson decline to testify on the documents that we have subpoenaed her to bring yesterday because she said she was not familiar because the documents have been sent to the head office.

And so, I asked her to familiarize herself with them last night and to return today at two.  So therefore, may I request that the court calls for Miss Tiongson to the witness stand first then later on the president, Mr. Garcia.

Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  May I now direct the prosecution to comply with the request of the Gentleman from Cebu instead of the president.  The first witness to take the stand ought to be the manager of the Katipunan Branch of the bank involved.

REP. TUPAS.  We comply, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Proceed.  And may I direct the president to stay on those seats at the back so that he will be readily available to be asked questions because of the testimony of Miss Tiongson.

REP. TUPAS.  Your Honor, Miss Anabelle Tiongson is here, we’re informed.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Put her on the witness stand under the same oath.

Counsel for the prosecution, proceed.

Senator Osmeña, I think, still has the floor to ask questions on the witness.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Thank you.  Ms. Tiongson, yesterday, when this Representation asked you if you had complied with the subpoena, and brought all the peso savings accounts, current accounts, time deposits, certificate of deposits, settlement accounts, investment management and trust accounts, unit investment trust funds, mutual funds, may I know—you don’t have mutual funds in the PS Bank, and any all other financial instruments offered by the Philippine Savings Bank, in the name of Chief Justice Corona.  Did you bring those documents with you, Ms. Tiongson.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Ms. Tiongson, would you like to present them to the court, please.

MS. TIONGSON.  I have with me certifications on the accounts–peso accounts.  Will I go through them, Your Honor, one by one?

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Yes, please, for the record, state the number of the account, the type of account it is, when it was opened, and the balance as of December 31st of those various years, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  These are peso accounts.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And then, they are linked to a particular PS Bank account number, in the name of the respondent.

MS. TIONGSON.  Your Honor, they are all independent accounts.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Independent accounts.  Proceed.

MS. TIONGSON.  The first account number requested was 089121017358, under the account name Renato Coronado Corona.  The account type is peso time deposit, with opening date on January 26, 2009, opening balance is P2,100,000, the closing date is April 16, 2009.

The balances as of December 31, 2002, based on the record is none because the account was not yet opened.

As of December 31, 2003, the account was not yet opened.

The December 31, 2004, the account was not yet opened.

Balances of December 31, 2005, the account was not yet opened.

As of December 31, 2006, the account was not yet opened.

As of December 31, 2007, the account was not yet opened.

As of December 31 …

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Ms. Tiongson, you don’t have to go through those years when the account was not yet opened.  Just tell us what is the balance of December 31st 2009 and on December 31st 2010.

MS. TIONGSON.  The balance based on the record as of December 31, 2009 is zero.  The balance as of December 31, 2010 is zero.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Would you like to go to the next account?

MS. TIONGSON.  The next account is 089121019593.  Based on the record it is under the name of Renato Coronado Corona.  The account type is peso time deposit.  The opening date is December 22, 2009.  The opening balance is P8,500,000.  The closing date is December 12, 2011.

So, I will start, Your Honor, with the balance as of December 31, 2009, which is P8,500,000.00.  The balance as of December 31, 2010 is P12,580,316.56 and the balance as of December 31, 2011 is zero, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Next account please.

MS. TIONGSON.  I’ll go to the next account with account number 089121020122.  Based on the record, it is under the account name Renato Coronado Corona, the account  type is peso time deposit, the opening date is March 4, 2010, the opening balance is P3,700,000.00.  The closing date is April 23, 2010.  I will start with 2010.  The balances as of December 31, 2010, based on the record, is zero.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Next account  please.

MG. TIONGSON.  The next account is with account number 089121021681. Based on the records, the account is under the account name Renato Coronado Corona, the account type is peso time deposit, the opening date, September 1, 2010, the opening balance of P7,090,099.45.  The closing .date is December 12, 2011, the balances as of December 31, 2010 is P7,148,238.83, the balance as of December 31, 2011 is zero.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Very good.  Next account please.

MS. TIONGSON.  The next account is with account number 089121011957.  The record shows that it is under the account name of Renato Coronado Corona.  The account type is peso time deposit, the opening date is May 16, 2007, the opening balance is P2 million.  The closing date was  October 2, 2008.  The balances as of December 31, 2007, based on the record is P5,018,255.26.  As of December 31, 2008, the balance was zero.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Thank you for that.  Ms. Tiongson, are there any other accounts.

MS. TIONGSON.  Your Honor, I also have here a bank certification signed by the president.  May I just read, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Yes, please.

MS. TIOGNSON.  Gentleman, it is dated February 14, 2012, this is to certify that Renato Coronado Corona has no peso account with Philippine Savings Bank that is classified as investments management and trust accounts or IMA, unit investments trust funds or UITF and mutual funds.  This certification is issued in compliance with the subpoena ad testificandum and duces tecum dated 13 February 2012 for whatever legal purpose it may serve.  Signed by the president.

SEN. OSMEÑA.. Thank you.  Now, does Justice Renato C. Corona have any other accounts of whatever kind in PSBank aside from those five accounts.  And aside, not mentioning the dollar accounts.

MS. TIONGSON.  May I consult my …

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Yes, please.

MS. TIONGSON.  Sir, I don’t have the records sir. I am sorry.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Okay.

MS. TIONGSON.  To my knowledge, Your Honor, I do not know, but these are the only ones that I have on hand.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Those are the ones you have on hand. You do not know. You are not saying there is none.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Alright.

MS. TIONGSON. That is all for this witness, Mr. President. I would like to reserve my right to propound questions of the president, Mr. Garcia, when the time comes.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Do you want to do it now? We will discharge the—do you have any …

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Mr. President please, if it pleases the court, yes.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   Is the prosecution thru with this witness?

ATTY. CUSTODIO. We …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   The Senator from Iloilo.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  As I pointed out earlier, this testimony is hearsay because she was not the one who actually entered this into the record or actually received the money, but as I said if you laid the foundation, then, her testimony will become an exception to the rule against hearsay.  I promised that I will show how to lay foundation with this witness and I will proceed to do so.

Under the time-honored tradition in the courtroom, that if the lawyer is going to miss something extremely important to his case, the judge may step in and show the way and then, after that, turn it over to the prosecution. So, please allow me to lay the foundation.

Ms. Witness, did you recently receive a subpoena directing your bank to produce certain documents at this trial?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes. Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  You received a subpoena. And you have been bringing out these records to us, what are these records? What are they called? What are they entitled?

MS. TIONGSON.  Based on the record, it is called “bank certification.”

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.   Those are bank certifications.

Alright. What used does your company make of these kinds of certifications?

MS. TIONGSON.  They, sir, usually issued for whatever purpose that has been …

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  That is a very vague specification. Tell your legal manager in the bank not to use that anymore. It’s completely useless. It should have said that it was issued for the purpose of this impeachment hearing, so, we will so consider it.

MS. TIONGSON.  Your Honor, it says here that this certification is issued upon the request of the impeachment court.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  There.

MS. TIONGSON.  Through subpoena ad testificandum ed duces tecum addressed to the bank manager of PSBank.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Alright. You already read out the information to us. So, we already know what kind of information is contained in that certification. So, let me ask you, who receives and enters the information on these certifications?  Who receives them, in the first place?

MS. TIONGSON.  For this particular …

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO. In your bank, what is your bank practice?

MS. TIONGSON.  For my branch, Your Honor, I can only speak for my branch.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Yes.

MS. TIONGSON.  For this particular case, when I received the subpoena, I endorsed it to the president and then, he was the one who …

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  You are not responding to my question, my question is, who receives and enters the information that you have just read out to us? How do you know that this certain bank account has this amount there?  Who gives you that information? Originally, a clerk in your head office, a computer that generates the information?  Who gives you the information?

MS. TIONGSON.  I honestly do not know, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Perhaps, the prosecution will know because  she is your prosecution witness. Normally, in your banking practice, who will know the information, for example, I think you call it “initial balance or new account balance.” When you open and you deposit money to open an account, then, it is entered in the records, who enters this record and who accepts the money that is considered an opening balance? Someone of your clerks there, isn’t that so?

MS. TIONGSON. The New Accounts Clerk, Your Honor, will enter the information.  And then, …

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  That is right.

MS. TIONGSON.  … the money will be received by the teller, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Yes, and they are the ones who enters the information in your computer system, would that be correct?

MS. TIONGSON. Yes, Your honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Right. That is why we are trying to prove that although, you are not the person who received the money and although, you are not the person who received the information from the client still you can be a reliable witness that is what we are trying to do.  When do these clerks, these new account managers and other functionaries of the bank fill out these certifications? How was the certification made, for example?

MS. TIONGSON.  For this particular case, Your Honor, since a lot of information are required, and it is a special kind of certification, so it is only upon the instruction of the president that this was issued, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Yes, but, who normally drafts that certification?

MS. TIONGSON. Normally, in the branch, in our practice in the branch, we have the new accounts clerk who normally prepare it, and the officers will approve it through the system, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Which officer will approve it.

MS. TIONGSON.  The branch service and control officer, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  And then what happens to the certification, do you keep it on file or it is sufficient and you just issue it as commanded by the court?

MS. TIONGSON.  As far as I know, Your Honor, I have not received any from the court.  But, normally, bank certifications in my experience were issued based on request from clients for visa purposes.  But, for court  purposes, I have not had that experience, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  All right.  Let me ask another question.  When the depositor first open his account, he is ask to fill up certain forms, isn’t  that so?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  All right.  What happens to those application forms there are quite a number of them, what happens to those forms? After the money has been received, what happens to those application forms?

MS. TIONGSON.  There are two sets of opening forms, Your Honor, one is kept in the branch and one is kept in the head office.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  All right.  What  ultimately happens to these two copies, one in the branch and one in the head office?  What ultimately happens to them?

MS. TIONGSON.  I can only speak for the branch, Your Honor, we will keep them in the filing cabinet inside the vault, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  I see, and how long does your bank keep this forms?  How long, for how long, five years?

MS. TIONGSON.  For as long as they are still open even after they are closed, so, I think within five years.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  About more or less five, seven years,.. as a bank practice.  Isn’t it that so?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Now, you have been qualified to testify and you are now you are being accepted, your testimony is now acceptable to the records even if what you are testifying on is technically hearsay.  Counsel, take note.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Thank you, Madam Senator-judge for the authentication.  Mr. President, we would just like to mark the bank certifications presented to this court today by the witness as our exhibits, Your Honor. Can we mark the bank certification pertaining to account number 089121017358 as –permission to approach the witness, Your Honor, to view the documents.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You may.

ATTY. CUSTODIO. Your Honor, the witness presented several documents which we would like to mark.  We would like to mark the bank certification dated February 14, 2012 as exhibit BBBBBBBB.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Will you identify the account number to which that document is linked.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  The certification of February 14 is pertaining to account no. 089121017358, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Exhibit BBBBBBBBB

The next document of even date, Your Honor, pertains to account no. 089121019593 as Exhibit CCCCCCCCC Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Mark it accordingly.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  The next document, Your Honor, of even date of February 14 pertains to Account No. 089-121020122, Your Honor, and we request that it be marked as DDDDDDDDD.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Mark it accordingly

ATTY, CUSTODIO.  Your Honor, the next bank certification we would like to mark, Your Honor, is again dated February 14, 2012 and this pertains to Account No. 089-121021681, Your Honor, and we request that it be marked as EEEEEEEEE, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Mark it accordingly

ATTY, CUSTODIO.  And the next document, Mr. President, pertains to Account No. 089-121011957 and we request that it be marked as FFFFFFFFF, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Mark it accordingly

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  That will be all, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  No testimonial evidence?

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  No further questions for this witness, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Counsel for the defense.   The Gentleman from Iloilo.

SEN. DRILON.  Just a suggestion, Mr. President, if it pleases the Presiding Officer, the members of the court.  There were questions on the deposits that were pending and that will be asked of the president of the PS Bank.  Before we ask questions on Annex A just for an orderly presentation so that we don’t lose track, can we just finish questions on the deposits, Mr. President.  Just a suggestion for an orderly presentation and for us to follow the testimony.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What is your suggestion?

SEN. DRILON.  Senator Osmeña requested that he continues to ask questions on the deposits which this witness has said she is not aware of and presumably the president of the bank will know.  Our suggestion, Mr. President, if it meets the approval of the court is that we first finish questions related to the deposits before we go on the question of Annex A of the subpoena which are the signature cards which was the subject of a very lengthy discussion yesterday.  Just for an orderly presentation.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Yes.  The question will be propounded to the witness, Madam Tiongson.

SEN. DRILON.  Yes, and to the PS Bank president, Mr. Garcia, sir.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  I think the gentleman from Cebu may do so first to her, to the witness now on the witness stand, Ms. Tiongson, and later on to the bank president.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Mr. President, with the indulgence…

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The gentleman from Taguig.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Magandang hapon, Mr. President.  I just have some questions for the witness to follow up the questions of those who spoke before me but I will not talk about Annex A.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Ma’am, good afternoon.

MS. TIONG.  Good afternoon, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Paki-narrate nyo lang po.  Paano po nangyari dahil sabi ninyo pinadala nyo lahat ng records sa main branch.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, sir.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  So after getting the subpoena, what happened.

MS. TIONGSON.  After getting the subpoena, I endorsed it to our president for proper action because …

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  How did it lead up to the documents being sent to the main office?

MISS TIONGSON.  It was requested by our …

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Yes, but can you narrate the—So, binigay …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  May I request that we let the witness finish her answer so that it will be recorded.  What was the answer of the witness?

MISS TIONGSON.  It was requested, or if you say ordered by our president that the documents be brought to head office for proper safekeeping.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And you complied with that order?

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.  It was—The documents were personally picked up by the …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Did you make any inventory of the documents that you forwarded to the head office attention of the president?

MISS TIONGSON.  I did not personally do it, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  But did anyone in your branch did it?

MISS TIONGSON.  I will have to check on that, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You cannot just send a bunch of papers to the head office without listing what you are sending for your record purposes.

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.  I wasn’t personally there when the documents were picked up by the senior officer, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So, it was picked up by a messenger from the head office from your branch?

MISS TIONGSON.  Not a messenger, Your Honor, but a senior officer.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who was that senior officer?

MISS TIONGSON.  Our BBG head, Your Honor.  Our Branch Banking Group Head.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What’s her name?

MISS TIONGSON.  Ismael Reyes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Ha?

MISS TIONGSON.  Ismael Reyes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And did he sign for those documents?

MISS TIONGSON.  Sorry, I am not aware of the receipt.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  That’s not your procedure?

MISS TIONGSON.  I’m sure it’s in the record, Your Honor.  It’s in the office.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Because I imagine, as a matter of practice, …

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes.  Oo.  There should be a transmittal.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  … documents passing from one branch to any branch or to the head office, you have to make a record of what was taken out from your office.

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  Proceed.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Can we please back track.  Basically, the Senate President asked the questions I’d like to ask you but—so you got the subpoena, and then you informed the president, then how did it lead up to sending the documents there?  What happened after you informed the president of the subpoena?

MISS TIONGSON.  After I informed him of the first subpoena, they—the documents were prepared and …

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Why was the documents prepared?  Did he order you—paki-narrate mo lang yung pano nangyari yan.  Don’t leave things out para I don’t keep asking the question.

MISS TIONGSON.  I’m trying to recall also.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Go ahead.  Whatever you can recall.

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes.  Upon receipt of the subpoena, actually I received it in the head office.  I was there when I received it and immediately went to him to personally show it to him.  And then he said, he offered don’t worry.  Something like that.  Not verbatim.  Something like don’t worry.  Parang he offered himself to be the one presenting, Your Honor, or taking the stand.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Then, is that what he said?  Then, how did it lead up to getting the documents?  Don ba niya sinabing kunin …

MISS TIONGSON.  That was before pa po, because I think the …

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  So the documents were ordered to be retrieved before the subpoena?

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.  When, I think, this Impeachment Court started to hear.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  So even before the subpoena, pinakuha na lahat ng records?

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  So ibig sabihin, yung records na pinadala, hindi mo sure kung lahat yun ay nasa subpoena or meron pang ibang accounts na wala sa subpoena.

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  So everything and everything that has to do with CJ Corona’s accounts …

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  … pinakuha before the subpoena?

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Meaning, the bank was expecting the subpoena.

MISS TIONGSON.  That I cannot say, Your Honor.  Sorry.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  So can you say whether yung pinadala nyong mga documents sa head office, eto yung mga accounts lang na—pesos lang ha, peso accounts na diniscuss na dito or there are other accounts?

MISS TIONGSON.  I wouldn’t recall, Your Honor.  I’m sorry.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  So you wouldn’t know kung meron o wala.  Meron ba kayong yung IMA, SDA, the investment management accounts?

MISS TIONGSON.  We have SDA but I think it’s offered by trust.  It’s not really in the bank proper, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Yes.  And meron din si CJ Corona nito?  Because Senator Serge asked you all of the …

MISS TIONGSON.  No, Your Honor, because it’s already covered by the certification that he has none.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  He has none.  Okay.  Then just a question on your records, sabi nyo di ba, may centralized kayo—may–computerized yong inyong records, right?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Is the signature card also—is there a digital copy inside the system?

MS. TIONGSON.  For current and savings account, Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Yes.  So, meaning, yong signature card, kahit wala na sa inyo yong records, it could have been printed out.

MS. TIONGSON.  I cannot say that, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  No, halimbawa, may dalang tseke, galing from a client, pupunta sa inyo, di ba?  Titingnan mo sa computer yong kanyang signature at saka yong, di ba—kasi, na-digitalized na—may digital copy of the signature card, di ba?  So, iko-compare mo iyong signature bago mo i-release iyong ine-encash, right?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  So, since it is there inside the system, and since you can print out from your system, katulad noong certification, you can actually print out the signature card.

MS. TIONGSON.  I couldn’t say, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Well, how can you print out other certifications but you cannot print out the …

MS. TIONGSON.  There is a function there that says print.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  But is that digital copy of the signature card, only available in your branch or other branches of PS Bank?

MS. TIONGSON.  For the current and savings, Your Honor, it can only be accessed upon transaction.  That is what I understand …

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Bakit sabi noong Presidente nyo kahapon, una kayo na nationwide in some services.  So, does that include in the encashment of cheques?

MS. TIONGSON.  Encashment of cheques, yes.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Yes, and you do know that there is a print screen function in all computers.  So, as long as it is in the screen, kahit meron kang security measure not to print out the document itself, you can print out the screen.

MS. TIONGSON.  I guess so, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  And last question doon sa pinag-aanuhan natin na dokumento, iyon ba ay one time lang pini-fill up o iyong ilalim noon na may mga accounts, e running form yon, meaning, kung may bagong account, dagdag ka ng dagdag doon.  Is it like a doctor’s record that every time you visit dadagdagan doon sa ilalim or is it a one time record, then, you have a new record?

That is my only question, then, I will yield to Senator Osmeña.

MS. TIONGSON.  What I know,Your Honor, is that upon an initial account, the client fills it up, regarding the subsequent account openings, I am not really very familiar because they are more on the marketing, but the operational side, it is the branch service and–service and control officer.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Who would be familiar with that?

MS. TIONGSON.  The branch service and control officer.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  Isnt’ that most relevant?  Kasi sabi nyo may mga nandoon sa …

MS. TIOGSON.  But as far as I know, we’re not really required to write it down.

SEN. CAYETANO (A.).  No, what I am saying is that, sinabi nyo kasi kahapon, meron na sa original na wala dito sa hawak natin dito sa court.  Meron na sa court na wala sa original.  But if it is a running form, it depends which—at what time na tiningnan ang form—which form, nasaan iyong form, di ba?

That is why, if you are not familiar with that, that would be very relevant to the discussion, whether or not iyong entries, nadagdagan, but anyway, I promise not to ask questions on that, and I will yield to Senator Osmeña.

Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  May I just suspend for a moment the trial for personal reason.

It was 3:13 p.m.

At 3:17 p.m., the trial resumed.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Trial resumes.  Proceed, the Gentleman from Cebu.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Ms. Tiongson, that is all I will be asking of you.  May we now discharge this witness, with the permission of the prosecution, defense and the court.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Is there any further question to this lady witness.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  None from the prosecution, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  From the defense.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Senator Judge Drilon would like to propound questions later on of this witness with the permission of the court, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Well, the witness will remain in the court room, sit at the back and wait for your turn to be called by the distinguished Gentleman from Cebu.  The president of the bank will have to take the witness stand.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Your Honor please, we have some cross-examination questions on Mrs. Tiongson, Your Honor.  I was only out because I attended to a personal necessity.  I apologize.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You want Ms. Tiongson to take the stand first.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  No, Your Honor.  I just want to manifest that we have not abandoned nor waived our right for cross-examination.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  We will recall her to the witness stand at that time when all other questions are finished so that you can proceed with your cross-examination uninterrupted.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Thank you, Your Honor.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The president of the bank will now please take the witness stand.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Mr. President, may I make some point of clarification.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Gentleman from the prosecution.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  May we know Mr. President, the right of counsels to propound further questions because the record will show that the direct and the cross-examination and no direct was made and the witness was discharged and was called back only for further questioning by Senator-Judges.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The defense counsel, to defend his client may cross-examine the witness even if presented by a judge of this court, as a matter of fairness.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Yes, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  As a matter of fairness, he is opened to questions that will test the credibility of the witness.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  May we then, therefore, be clarified, Mr. President, that insofar as this bank president is concerned, despite his having been discharged, we can also ask additional questions later.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  If you want to do a redirect, …

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Thank you.  Thank you, Mr. …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   … make the proper motion at the proper time.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Subject to the objection of the defense.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright. So Ordered.

Proceed.

SEN. CAYETANO (P.).   Mr. President, I would just like, His Honor, to remind the cameras about the order to be conscious about the privacy of the documents, given that this is the document that contains information on both foreign and local accounts. May we just ask the Presiding Officer to remind the media present on the instructions, His Honor, gave yesterday in the interest of the privacy of the client of the bank.  Thank you.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   May I, for the last time, request the media people not to get surreptitiously a photo of the documents presented in this court, otherwise, I’ll be forced to exclude you from the trial. So Ordered.

Proceed.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Thank you, Mr. President.

Mr. Garcia, good afternoon.

MR. GARCIA.  Good afternoon.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Mr. Garcia, you are or you have read—have you read the subpoena that was sent to Ms. Annabelle Tiongson, Branch Manager, PSBank Katipunan Branch, Loyola Heights, Quezon City?

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor, I read.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  And the subpoena have been sent, I believe, the 13th of February for her to appear on the 14th and that you are now here also by virtue of this subpoena?

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA. Alright.  Yesterday, Ms. Tiongson had volunteered you as the witness that would answer questions as covered by this subpoena because she said that the records of the branch have all been collected or compiled at the head office of PSBank, is that correct?

MR. GARCIA.  That is correct, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Now, Mr. Garcia, the subpoena had asked for information documents, bank statements for all peso, savings, current, time deposits, certificate of deposits, settlement accounts, investment management and trust account, unit investment trust funds and there was a certification earlier submitted by your bank saying that there were no, and correct me if I am wrong, no investment management and trust accounts, unit investment trust funds under the name of Justice Corona.  Would you like to enumerate again those accounts which Justice Corona does not have at PSBank?  Yes, well, I’d like a copy of that, with the permission of the court.

MR. GARCIA.    Your Honor, if I may.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Just provide the Senator–Judge from Cebu copy of the document.

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, I have certified that Renato Coronado Corona has no peso account with Philippine Savings Bank that is classified as either investment and management trust account, a unit investment trust fund, or a mutual fund.  And I have done so in compliance with the subpoena ad testificandum and duces tecum dated February 13, Your Honor. This has been earlier formally submitted by our branch manager.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Yes, thank you for that.  So, therefore, no investment management or trust accounts, no unit investment trust funds, no mutual funds, is that correct?

ATTY. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Okay.  So, therefore, he has certificate of deposits, settlement accounts, time deposit, current accounts, and savings account.

ATTY. GARCIA.  Are you asking me, Your Honor?

SEN. OSMEÑA.  I am asking you because the subpoena covered also those other accounts.

ATTY. GARCIA.  Yes, sorry, Your Honor.  With respect to that, we do have other peso dominated accounts under Renato Coronado Corona, which were not subject matter of the original subpoena which were ordered to present.  So, in response to your question, and in response to the instruction of the court in this subsequent subpoena, we do stipulate, Your Honor, that there are other peso accounts that are not in the original subpoena …

SEN. OSMEÑA.  By the original subpoena, you mean …

MR. GARCIA.  The first one, the first one.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  … the subpoena that was served on you in January?

MR. GARCIA.  In February 8, I believe, or 7, in which contained the five peso time deposit accounts.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Yes.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  February 6.

MR. GARCIA.  February 6.  I stand corrected, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Would the prosecutor like to inform us what date that subpoena was issued.

REP. TUPAS.  February 6, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  February 6.  All right.  So, therefore, would you like to identify the accounts?

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  That are not covered by the February 6 subpoena but were later covered by the February 13 subpoena.

MR. GARCIA.  With your indulgence, Your Honor, I would just get the document.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Thank you.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  For clarification only, Your Honor.  The subsequent subpoena later than the February 8, Your Honor, is February 14, Your Honor.  13, meron?  13th day of February, but the production require this on February 14, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  That is correct, production on the 14th.

JUSTICE CUEVAS. Thank you.

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, we have today, actually, a certifications on two other accounts and  we would like to apologize for the two other accounts because when we earlier prepared this based on the subpoena, there was some clarification about—discussed, Your Honor, about it not including accounts that are not in the original subpoena so we did not bring ..

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Are these peso accounts?

MR. GARCIA.  Peso account, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Since you have testified on them now, I think it is proper for you to tell us what are those peso accounts?

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, if I may.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Proceed.

MR. GARCIA.  We have another peso account with account no. 089121021444 under the account name Renato Coronado Corona, a peso time deposit that was opened in July 23, 2010 with an opening balance of seven million three hundred and seventy thousand four hundred thirty-eight pesos and sixty-five centavos, and this was closed in September 1, 2010.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  You mean it was time deposit for only three months.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Is that connected with any of the five accounts previously mentioned in the subpoena and already recorded in this proceeding?

MR. GARCIA.  No, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So this is totally a separate account?

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.  This is not in the original subpoena but on the basis of the subsequent subpoena because it says all…

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  No, the Presiding Officer just want to be sure that that is not included in the amounts already mentioned that were connected in the five accounts.

MR. GARCIA.  It was not connected, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So this is totally separate account and separate amount of money deposited in the bank.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright.

MR. GARCIA.  We also have another account under Account No. 089-121023848 under the name Renato Coronado Corona, a peso time deposit with an opening date of June 29, 2011 with an opening balance of P17 million.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  How much?

MR. GARCIA.  P17 million, Your Honor, which was closed and terminated on December 12, 2011, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Is this also an account separate from those amounts related or linked with the five peso bank deposit accounts mentioned ealier.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  This is a new amount of money deposited with a separate bank account number.

MR. GARCIA.  It was a separate account with a separate account number but the source of the funds deposited we have no idea.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Proceed.

MR. GARCIA.  In addition, Your Honor, if I may, based on the instruction.  There are two other accounts but I really have no details as of the moment.  I can only remember that one is—I will probably disclose it formally later and then the other one is a current account.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Now, would you like to repeat the number of the second account and the date in which it was opened?  It was opened July…

MR. GARCIA.  July 29, 2011 for P17 million and closed in December 12, 2011.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  What was the original tenor, Mr. Garcia, of this account?  I mean was this just a six-month time deposit or was this a one-year deposit which was closed prematurely.

MR. GARCIA.  I am very sorry, Your Honor, I do not have that information right now because we just followed the subpoena.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Would you like to furnish us with that later.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor, we could furnish that later.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Opo.  Ano pong number itong peso time deposit?

MR. GARCIA.  This is 089-121023848.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Alright, July 29, December 11, that does not sound exactly six months.  Does that look strange to you?

MR. GARCIA.  I really have no idea, Your Honor.  The depositors actually would put deposits depending on, you know, different tenors so…If I have the other information I may…

SEN. OSMEÑA.  Wait.  Let me see if I got you right—July 29, 2011.

MR. GARCIA.  June 29, 2011.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  June 29, 2011, I’m sorry.

MR. GARCIA.  It was closed in December 12, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  He does no know the tenor but June 29 to December 12 is not six months.

MR. GARCIA.  No, Your Honor, not exactly six months.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  But the coincidence here  was that the impeachment was filed on a few days before December 12.

REP. TUPAS.  If we may, Your Honor, because the impeachment date was mentioned.  Can we say when?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  It’s a matter of record anyway.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Proceed.

REP. TUPAS.  We impeached—The House impeached the Chief Justice on December 12, 2011.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  All right.  Now, Mr. Garcia, can you explain to the court the difference between a deposit in an investment account?  For example, I’ll be more specific, if I, your client, ask you, the bank, to buy some ROPs for me, these are dollar denominated bonds issued by the national government, is that classified as a deposit or as an investment?

MR. GARCIA.  Well, first of all, Your Honor, we will not provide that service for our clients.  We refer them to our parent bank, Metrobank.  The PS Bank does not engage in that kind of activities.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  But would you know?  I mean, being a banker yourself.

MR. GARCIA.  Normally, it will not be classified as a deposit.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  It would be an investment.

MR. GARCIA.  Investment, yes.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  And if you were to—Would you also handle investments for you client like he would direct you to buy some corporate banks, PLDT bonds, ABS-CBN bonds, San Miguel bonds?  That would also be classified as an investment?

MR. GARCIA.  That I know would be classified as an investment but the bank per se does not really provide that service because we …

SEN. OSMEÑA.  With PS Bank per se?

MR. GARCIA.  PS Bank.  We just refer …

SEN. OSMEÑA.  But you will be the next president of Metrobank, so …

MR. GARCIA.  No, Sir.  I have written to my superiors, and I have told them that on the basis of that news report, I already specifically said that if ever it is offered I would decline it, because I do not want my people to feel they’re being abandoned during this time and secondly, I do not want the sincerity of our interest to protect our employees and depositors and the entire banking industry to be misinterpreted.  So, I will not and never accept.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  And your employees will stick by you more than ever now because of that kind of loyalty to them, Mr. Garcia.

Mr. Garcia, going back to my question, with an investment account, vis a vis a deposit account, be considered as covered by the foreign currency deposit unit law?  That FCD law pertains to deposits, hindi ba?

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  You just said that any managed accounts that is invested ,say, in ROPs in Philippine bonds denominated in US dollars, or other types of foreign instruments denominated in foreign currency would then not be subject—would not be termed a deposit as covered by the FCDU, and therefore, any such accounts should be open to this court.

MR. GARCIA.  I cannot, right now, categorically state, Your Honor, but if I can draw, I draw from the peso side.  The investment in government bonds is classified as deposits for the peso, so perhaps, likewise, in forex to the dollars would similarly be the same.

So, I am not absolutely certain about that.

SEN. OSMEÑA.  All right.  Mr. President, at this time I’d like to give way to Senator-Judge Drilon who signified his intention to propound.  Senator-Judge Jinggoy Estrada?

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   Before I recognize Senator Estrada, I would just like to find out from the bank president of PS Bank why you required the transfer of all the records of this depositor in your bank who is the subject of an impeachment from—to be delivered to you as president from the Katipunan Branch of your bank?

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, we’ve always managed risk in the bank, and given that the …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What do you mean by managed it in the bank?

MR. GARCIA.  We manage different types of risks, Your Honor, whether it be risk on delinquency, on, you know, other events that happen–in this particular case, we have an impeachment process, there was a national process, we felt that, ultimately, perhaps, documents of the customer would become the subject matter of, perhaps, inquiry, so—and there is a lot of interest on it, these documents were in the branch, we believe that it would have just been prudent for us to properly control them better, and so, we took possession of these documents.  I instructed then our senior officers to take possession of it from the branch, and stored it in head office.  We put it under even tighter control of our, you know, even senior officers are the ones who have control over these documents, Your Honor.  Because we felt that ultimately, we may have to, in some form or another, be responding to the impeachment court.  So, we always want to make sure that what we provide to the court would be the accurate, honest, everything, and that these documents cannot be accessed by anyone else, altered or anything.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You did this, motu propio, without any influence or inducement from outside parties.

MR. GARCIA.  Absolutely not, Your Honor, we did it as a prudent measure to make sure that these documents are even tightly controlled, just so that we have them and they are properly secured.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right, the Gentleman from San Juan, the President Pro-Tempore has the floor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Thank you, Mr. President.  I would like to bring to the attention of the manager, account number 089121019593, I think this is included in the first—in the original subpoena, if you have the record, Mr. Witness.

MR. GARCIA.  May I refer it to our counsel.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Please, please.

MR. GARCIA.  Thank you, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Yes.  Do you have it in front of you?

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Okay, when was the opening date?

MR. GARCIA.  The opening date on account 593 was December 22, 2009.

SEN. ESTRADA.  2009.  Is this a peso time deposit?

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  All right.  What was the length of the time deposit, if we may know?

MR. GARCIA.  I am not absolutely certain right now, because time deposits could be rolled over, Your Honor, we have 30, 60—what I am certain of is the closing date, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  What was the closing date?

MR. GARCIA.  The closing date was December 12, 2011.

SEN. ESTRADA.  All right.  What about account number 089121021681, also a part of the original subpoena.

MR. GARCIA.  With respect to account 681, which is also peso time deposit …

SEN. ESTRADA.  Yes.

MR. GARCIA.  It was opened in September 1, 2010 and closed on December 12, 2011.

SEN. ESTRADA.  December 12, 2011.  And you mentioned that two, I do not know if it this is a new account, 089121023848, the one you just recently mentioned.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Just opened on, if I am not mistaken, it was opened in June 29, 2011 and it was closed on December 12, am I right?

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Do you know the length of time of this time deposit?  Was it three months or six months or even a year?

MR. GARCIA.  I personally do not have that information and I can’t provide it.

SEN. ESTRADA.  In your opinion, was this particular account pre-terminated?

MR. GARCIA.  I cannot categorically state right now, Your Honor, because I will have to look at the maturity date because when we open an account, let us say, if it is for 60 days, you have the account opening date and a maturity date.  So, when an account is terminated before the maturity date, then we normally would classify this as a pre-terminated account.  Because it did not run its full term.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Yes.  So, I do not want to impute malice.  But for me it is quite suspicious, these three accounts, 08912109593, 089121021681 and the last one that you mentioned 089121023848, they were all closed on the day that the Chief Justice was impeached.  And according to Congressman Tupas, the Chief Justice was impeached on December 12, 2011.  And all of these three accounts were closed.  Ayokong magsuspetsa, pero, ayokong mag-isip ng malisya, pero nagsususpetsa talaga ako.  Iyon lang po, Ginoong Pangulo.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Anything else with this witness?  The Gentleman from Pampanga.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  Thank you, Mr. President.  Just a few questions to the witness, Mr. Pascual.  Earlier you mentioned that for account number 089121023848, the amount was P17 million and it was withdrawn or terminated on December 11, correct?

MR. GARCIA.  December 12.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  December 12.  Once an account is terminated, would you know or can you explain to us what the termination process would be, is there notice?  How does that work?

MR. GARCIA.  There is notice from the customer, Your Honor, that he or she will terminate her account, she will give advice to us and the manner of that termination whether it is going to be paid out in whatever form and so the branch would normally comply with the customer’s instruction.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  And in this case, would you have information as to what form was undertaken?  You said whatever form.  In this case of the P17 million, was there a written notice to you or was there a check issued?  How does that go?  Would you have that information?

MR. GARCIA.  I really don’t have that specific information right now, but we can provide it upon the instructions of the court.

SEN. PANGLINAN.  Yes, Mr. President, perhaps another additional information and documents that we would like for this court to retrieve.  Was this how …what is the term?  Termination was undertaken, are there written documents to this effect and is there a way of determining where the funds went?

MR. GARCIA.  Definitely, Your Honor.  The funds flow can be determined.  Sometimes the instructions can be relayed either over the phone or in person or in writing.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  Would you personally know if he called you?  Did the Chief Justice call you about this or the bank manager?  Did you have personal knowledge?

MR. GARCIA.  I have never talked to the Chief Justice, Your Honor.

SEN. PANGILINAN. So, that is for the P17 million.  You can trace where the P17 million went.

MR. GARCIA.  I have an idea, Your Honor, but I would not want to stipulate it right now because I want to be absolutely certain.  Because when we started preparing for the last subpoena we looked at all of the records but unfortunately I do not have it right now because I did not anticipate this will be ..

SEN. PANGILINAN.  And would you be able to say the same and give us the needed information for the 089121021444 account, P7,370,000.00.

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, we can provide any information with respect to  any peso account upon the instructions of the court, anything.

SEN. PANGILINAN. So, Mr. President, we would like to manifest that the documents mentioned, the needed document, to explain the transfer of these two accounts be submitted to this court, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   The president of the PSBank is ordered to comply.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  In the meantime, Mr. President, may I be recognized for the prosecution, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   Proceed.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  May I just, at this point, adopt and mark the documents presented today by the witness as our evidence, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.    You may.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  May I approach the witness, Your Honor, to …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.    Proceed.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Witness presenting to counsel, Your Honor, two documents, one, dated February 14, 2012 pertaining to Account No. 089121023848, Your Honor.  We respectfully request that this be marked as Exh. GGGGGGGGG.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.    Mark it accordingly.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  And the other document, Mr. President, is a document even date, which is a bank certification and this time, pertaining to Account No. 089121021444, Your Honor, which we respectfully request to be marked as Exh. HHHHHHHHH.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.     Mark it accordingly.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  That will be all, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.     Majority Floor Leader.

JUSTICE CUEVAS. If Your Honor please, may we …

SEN. SOTTO. The defense, Mr. President.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  May we now proceed with our scheduled cross-examination of Mrs. Tiongson, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   Alright.  In the meantime, the president is discharged and you sit at the back and Ms. Tiongson will take the witness oath under the same oath for cross-examination.

MR. GARCIA. Thank you, Your Honor.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  With the kind permission of the Honorable Court, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   Proceed.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Good afternoon, Ms. Tiongson.

MR. TIONGSON.  Good afternoon, sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Now, while you were on direct examination, a couple of minutes ago, I heard you state that you have no personal knowledge insofar as the entries appearing in the various documents that were presented to you this afternoon, am I right?  You have no personal knowledge?

MR. TIONGSON.  Yes, sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Meaning to say, you are not a participant neither have you taken any step in connection with the correctness, accuracy and truthfulness the entries appearing in the said documents, that’s correct?

MR. TIONGSON.    No, sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  That is correct.  Alright.

Now, there was a statement made by the Honorable Senator-Judge Miriam Defensor that your statement therefore in connection with the said entries are considered hearsay and therefore not admissible in evidence, did you hear her state about that?

MR. TIONGSON.    Yes, sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  And to make it as an exception to the hearsay rule, she was, apparently, alluding to entries in regular course of business, am I right, or you do not know that?

MR. TIONGSON.   Can you please clarify, sir?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  And in order to make it as an exception to the hearsay rule, similar to the other exceptions like dying declaration, statement by a co-conspirator, statement against pedigree, you were asked the question how it happened to be in those entries.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Objection, Your Honor, witness will be incompetent with respect to legal points.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  He is under cross.  Let her answer.

MR. TIONGSON.  Yes, sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Alright. Now, if there were entries made into the records that you have testified a while ago and you are not a participant in the entries made, somebody must have known the facts that resulted in the entries into to those statements, am I right?

MR. TIONGSON.  Yes, sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  And I heard you mentioned also about the identity of these persons or you do not know them?

MR. TIONGSON.    Mr. Garcia will be the …

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  The persons responsible for making the entries appearing in the documents that you mentioned.

MS. TIONGSON.  What I know, Sir, is that they got it from our—we have this computer system that we enter the transactions and then it goes to our server there in the head office.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  My question is, do you know these persons who made the entries.

MS. TIONGSON.  The persons who made the entries, Sir, came from the branch.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Do you know them personally?

MS. TIONGSON.  They are part of the branch personnel.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Who are they, please. Would you kindly tell the honourable court?

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Please identify the individual persons that are required/allowed  by your practice to make the entries.

MS. TIONGSON.  As I have mention earlier, the persons entered the transactions are the new accounts clerk.  At the time the transactions were made and the personnel, branch personnel who processes the validation of the deposit is the teller.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  What I am asking you is a simple question on who are the identity …

MS. TIONGSON.  Sir, that happened few years back and I wouldn’t know, Sir, because I was not yet there.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  So, you don’t know them personally.

MS. TIONGSON.  No, Sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  You were not with them at the time the entry was made.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  All you know is that they were there because when you examine the document, there were entries made.  Am I right?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS. In accordance with rule on entries made in the regular course of business, the statement appearing or the entries appearing therein must be made and testified to by the person making the entry.  Do you know that?

MS. TIONGSON.  No, Sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Or you did not know.

MS. TIONGSON.  I do not know, Sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  And you do not care, therefore, whoever made the entries whether  it was made by Mr. A, Mr. X, or Mr. C.

MS. TIONGSON.  No, Sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  So, you cannot vouch therefore for the validity or correctness of the entries made in there, am I right?

MS. TIONGSON.  We can, Sir, we have the record.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  No, I am not asking you about the records, the entries made in those documents.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Just answer the answer.  Can you vouch to the accuracy and verity of the entries since you were not there.

MS. TIONGSON.  I was not there.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  You cannot therefore.

MS. TIONGSON.  No.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  That is my understanding.  Now, you therefore, cannot tell the honourable court that those entries were made at the time of the transaction stated in there, am I right?

MS. TIONGSON.  Since I was not  there, Your Honor.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  You cannot. So, you also cannot tell the court when those entries …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What was the answer of the witness.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Kindly speak a little louder, Ms. Tiongson.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What was your answer?

MS. TIONGSON.  I cannot, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.

MS. TIONGSON.  Based on the fact that I was not there, but based it on the record, we will be able to verify …

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  I am not asking you about the record, I am asking you a very simple question.

MS. TIONGSON.  Okay.

JUSTICE CUEVAS. So, you cannot.  That is your answer.  All right.  Would you also be able to tell the court when those entries were actually made by the persons you were alluding to, because that is a requirement in connection with entries in regular course of business.  It must be testified to or known by the persons making the entries, the time the entries were made,  and, therefore, he can vouch on the accuracy and correctness of the entries.

MS. TIONGSON.  Based on the record, Sir, we can.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  No.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Do you know personally?

MS. TIONGSON.  Personally, no.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  That is the question.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  No.

MS. TIONGSON.  No, Sir, No.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  So, it is very clear now that all your testimonies given awhile ago in connection with the entries appearing there are based only on what you found on the records.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Sir. They were based on the record.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  They are not based on your personal knowledge, and therefore, that is what is the law  of evidence, as I say evidence.  Do you understand that?  Yes, Sir.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Sir.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Thank you, that is all for the witness, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  Since there is a cross, you may ask a re-direct question.

SEN. SOTTO.  Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago wishes to have the floor, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Gentle Lady from Iloilo.

SEN. DEFENSOR-SANTIAGO.  Just on this particular point since I have already gone to the trouble of having this testimony admitted, just to add to the questions of defense counsel.

Ms. Witness, if you just want to recite the necessary fundamental questions.  Were these records made at or near the time of the acts and events appearing on it?  Is that your company procedure?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  Yes.  Was that record kept in the ordinary course of a regularly conducted business activity?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes,Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  Yes.  Now, let us read the rules of evidence.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Is this an application of the principle of res gestae?

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  No, we are referring to Section 43, Entries in the Course of Business…

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  … particularly of Section 37 which begins with a listing of the exceptions of the hearsay rule.  Here is one exception, Section 43, Entries in the course of business.  Entries made at or near the time of the transactions to which they refer by a person deceased or unable to testify who was in a position to know the facts therein stated may be received as prima facie evidence if such person made the entries in his professional capacity or in the performance of duty and in the ordinary or regular course of business or duty.  So all you know is that this person must have followed regular entries or regular procedures of entries in the course of business.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  That’s all you know because you were not personally present.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  Therefore, it lies with prosecution now to comply with the other requirements of Section 43.  You have to show that the entries were made at or near the time of the transactions by a person who is unable to testify.  Do you think, Ms. Witness, that the person who personally made entries might still be able to testify?

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Answer the question please.

MS. TIONGSON.  I will have to check on that, Your Honor, because they might not be connected with the bank anymore.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  That’s right.  That’s what we’re thinking, that’s what your court is thinking.  So at least under Section 43, what you have testified is prima facie evidence unless otherwise disprove.  Isn’t that so?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.  Counsel for the prosecution, will you take over please.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Now, counsel for the prosecution, make a redirect question.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Maybe he will be adopting the examination of the honourable Senator-Judge, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You may counsel for the defense.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Again, our most generous thank you to the Lady Senator from Iloilo for aiding us and educating us, Mr. President.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  But may we know, Your Honor, the nature of the examination to be made now.  Because we are already on redirect.  We are through with out cross, Your Honor, so it must be in the concept of redirect, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Correct.  They cannot go beyond the questions asked during the cross-examination.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Correct.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Thank you, Mr. President.  Will you refer again to your record, Ms. Witness, and particularly the certification pertaining to Account No. 089-121019593.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, sir.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Your record that you brought showed it was closed on December 12, 2011.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Improper for redirect, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Are you cross-examining your witness?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  No, we have not cross-examined her on that point, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Precisely I am asking because the tendency of the question is a cross-examination.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  I am sorry, Your Honor.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  In the interest of justice, Your Honor, these are questions that the witness may need to testify on, Mr. President.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Tinulungan ka na nga ni Judge…

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  It was objected to so what is the pleasure of the gentlelady from Iloilo.

SEN. DEFENSOR SANTIAGO.   Mr. President, I would like to know, since there are two kinds of rule on whether a question can be asked on recross, first  we have direct and then cross and then you have redirect and recross.  There is a technical rule that cross can only examine the witness with respect to what has been examined on direct.  So there is a limitation that is why it’s very technical and the same rule should apply on redirect and recross.  You can recross examination only in the topics that have been covered by redirect.  That is a technical rule.  But there is another rule called the open rule where on cross-examination and on recross-examination the counsel can just ask any kind of question and is not necessarily limited to what has been touched upon in direct or in re-direct examination.  May I please request a ruling from our Presiding Officer on whether we adopt the narrow rule or the open rule.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  I would adopt the open rule because in cross and re-cross, you mix up the right of the defense counsel to test the credibility of the witness.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Besides, Your Honor, there is no manifestation whatsoever on the part of the counsel for the prosecution relative to being permitted to us additional direct—additional re-direct, Your Honor, or direct question.

That will disrupt or revolutionize the Law on Evidence, Your Honor—on direct, after the direct cross, after the cross re-direct.  But that is limited to matters that were taken up in the cross examination, Your Honor.  That’s why we post that objection.  And we do not think that is a technicality because it goes deeper into the rise …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  This may well be the time to state the underlying rule in impeachment trial.  From what I have read is that, the strict Rules of Evidence in criminal trial are normally not adopted in impeachment trial.

So that’s why I’ve been trying to balance between the strict Rules of Evidence and a certain degree of liberality.

So, let us allow the prosecution to propound question on his re-direct and examine each question whether that is a proper question in re-direct.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  The question now is whether …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What was the question?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  This is entirely a new matter.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What was the last question?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  That’s our perception of the question, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Precisely, I asked the Gentleman whether he is doing a re-direct or he’s trying to—the tendency of the question is trying to question the competence of his witness.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  No, Your Honor.  I am—On a re-direct, I am asking a re-direct examination, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right, proceed.  Proceed to make a re-direct examination.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  All right.  Thank you, Mr. President.

Miss Witness, in your certification for Account No. 089121019593, the closing date there appears to be December 12, 2011, is that correct?

MISS TIONGSON.  Correct, Sir.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  All right.  There is no entry in your statement.  Would your record show if there is an amount closed or closing balance or closing amount for December 12, 2011 for that particular account?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  If Your Honor, please, I hope the court will pardon me.  This is a very leading question.  And this is a very vital instrument.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  Try to reform your question.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Thank you, Mr. President.

Can you tell us the closing amount as of December 12, 2011 for this particular account?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Almost the same objection, Your Honor.  It is more leading now than before.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Let the witness answer so that—If there is or there is none.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  May I repeat the—

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Sir.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  What is the closing balance for this particular account on December 12, 2011?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  The best evidence would be the document itself, Your Honor.  What is involved is the content of the document.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Let the witness answer.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  May I explain, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  No more.  Let the witness answer.

MISS TIONGSON.  Sir, may I just refer to the previous subpoena because I think that was already covered.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Can you answer the question?  The question is simple.  The account was closed on December 12, 2010.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  11, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  2011.  Was there a closing balance at the end of that month?

MISS TIONGSON.  Sir, I do not have it, Your Honor, so I cannot say how much it is, the closing balance.pers

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The record does not have it.

MISS TIONGSON.  Right now, yes.  I do not have it, Your Honor.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Would your branch have records pertaining to the closing balance for this particular account?

MISS TIONGSON.  As I’ve said, Your Honor, all the records are already in the head office, but they are there.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Yes.

MISS TIONGSON.  Not in the branch.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  I see.  So, it would be within the office of your president?

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  When you say that an account is closed, what does that mean?

MS. TIONGSON.  The account has been withdrawn, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  In other words, the amount …

MS. TIONGSON.  Has been terminated.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Iyong pera doon sa account ay tinanggal na.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Paano magkakaroon ng balance, the day after tinanggal yong pera dyan sa account na yan?  Common sense will tell us that there is none, dib a?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor, that is why it is zero.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Mr. President, we are pertaining to the date of closure on December 12, 2011.  What was the balance that was the last withdrawn balance for that particular account on that day?

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Do you know what is the amount withdrawn on December 12, when the account was closed?

MS. TIONGSON.  I do not have the data, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  That is the answer.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Would you be able to bring the records, Ms. Witness, and present it to the court, for the next hearing?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Your Honor, please …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What record is there, closed na e.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Closed na.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Mr. President, we are referring to the records that they have that will show that on December 12, a certain amount was withdrawn from that particular account.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So, to clarify this point, finally, what was the balance of this account before it was closed on December 12–on December 11, do you know what was the balance of this account?

MS. TIONGSON.  I do not have the record, Your Honor, so, I do not know.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  The Gentleman from Cavite.

SEN. LACSON.  Just to save time, Mr. President, I think, the prosecutor is asking the wrong person.  She already testified, and the president of the bank testified that all the records were sent to the head office—just to save on time, Mr. President.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Thank you.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  That is correct.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Thank you, Mr. …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Incompetent na nga yong witness e.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  In that case, Your Honor, because my next question would also be of the same nature, I will have no further questions for this witness.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Are you sure you are closing your redirect?

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Yes, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Okay.  So, what is the pleasure of the defense?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  No recross, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  No recross.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, may we recognize Senator Loren Legarda if there is no recross.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Lady from Antique, Malabon and the Philippines.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Maybe, I should start with question of the Majority Leader.  The Majority Leader is requesting that this question be answered, in behalf of Senator Sotto, then, I will not proceed to my first question, which is actually very, very simple.  He is asking what is the relevance or the materiality of the question of the prosecutor regarding the closure of the December 12 account.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.   The …

SEN. LEGARDA.  2011, I am sorry, to the SALN.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  To the SALN …

SEN. LEGARDA.  That is not my question, that is the question of the Majority Leader.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  There is evidence, Your Honor, that shows that three accounts were closed on the same date of December 12, 2011.  And this will show that this was in preparation because of the impeachment complaint that was filed …

SEN. LEGARDA.   We are referring to the December 12, 2011 closure of the three accounts, is that correct?

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Yes.  Yes.

SEN. LEGARDA.  And we are referring in your articles of impeachment, to the SALN which was filed in 2011, ending December 2010, is that correct?

What is therefore the relevance of a 2011 December closing of the account to the end December 2010 SALN?  That is the question of Senator Sotto.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Insofar as the relevance of the relevance of the three accounts closure to December 31, which was the reporting date of the SALN, Your Honor, it has no direct relevance.

SEN. LEGARDA.  It has no direct relevance.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  We are only intending to show that there was an attempt to conceal certain amounts.  If there will be a consideration of three amounts–of the three accounts Your Honor, it totals about P36 million.  P36.2 million, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Thank you, Mr. Prosecutor.  Senator Sotto is seemingly satisfied with the answer to his question.

ATTY. CUSTODIO.  Thank you, Your Honor.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  May we make a short manifestation.  Only one minute manifestation, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Proceed.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Now, they are referring to an account exiting as of December 2011.  And allegedly, there was an irregularity in this because it was not reflected in the statement of account of the honourable Chief Justice.  How can it be reflected?  It must be in the year thereafter.  Before April of 2011.  Not on the same year.  So, if the purpose is to show that this was not included or stated or entered in his statement of assets and liabilities, the question is very erroneous, it is irregular and it has no legal basis.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  We take note of your manifestation.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Thank you, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.

SEN. DRILON.  Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Gentleman from Iloilo.

SEN. DRILON.  We just take note that the account number ending in 593 was existing as of December 31 2010.  Because it was opened in 2009 and closed on December 12, 2011.  Therefore, it was existing as of December 31, 2010.  Just for the record.

SEN. LEGARDA.  May I have my turn, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The gentle Lady from Antique.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Just to summarize in answer to Senator Sotto’s question.  There is no direct relation between the closure of the three accounts to the SALN of 2010.  Now, I proceed to my questions before Ms. Annabelle Tiongson.  Very simple, it will not deal with each and every account, just a simple question, I am certain you would not need to ask your counsel for this.

Based on your previous testimonies, there are three persons apart from yourself who have access to the vault containing the bank documents of Chief Justice Renato Corona, is that correct?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  In your recollection, Ms. Tiongson, have you given any information in the form of  a hard copy, soft copy, original or a photocopy, a faithful reproduction of the original, or even just verbally of any of these documents in the vault pertaining to Chief Justice Corona’s accounts in your branch to any person in the past days, weeks or months?

MS. TIONGSON.  No, I did not, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  To your knowledge, did any of the three persons who have access to your vault possibly give any information of that nature to anyone?

MS. TIONGSON.  To my knowledge, no, they did not, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  When did you realize that there was a leak from documents that were kept in your vault in your branch?

MS. TIONGSON.  It was that petition for the TRO.

SEN. LEGARDA.  When you received a subpoena or when you learned about the case in media?  Or were you advised by your superiors in the bank?

MS. TIONGSON.  I think I was advised by the superiors.

SEN. LEGARDA.  You were called by the bank officials along with the three others who have access to the vault.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Two others.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Three.  Is it two or three?  I understand there are two and there is one alternate.  So, four of you altogether, is that correct, Mr. Tiongson?

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  So, there are four of you?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  You are, therefore, saying that neither of the three or yourself had given any information about the documents pertaining to the bank accounts in question which were contained in the alleged leaked document which contained the peso and dollar bank accounts information of the Chief Justice.

MS. TIONGSON.  No one has ever given any information to any one, Your Honor, in the branch.

SEN. LEGARDA.  In any form?

MS. TIONGSON.  In any form, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Yes.  And, you also mentioned in your testimony that there was an ongoing internal investigation of the bank regarding this reported leak, is that correct?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honors.

SEN. LEGARDA.  May we know when the investigation started and the status of the investigation?

MS. TIONGSON. I think Mr. Garcia would be the best person to answer that because he ordered it.

SEN. LEGARDA.  He ordered the investigation upon finding out about the leak documents?

MS. TIONGSON.  Actually, he was the one who informed me that they did an investigation.

SEN. LEGARDA.    May we know what kind of questions were asked of your regarding the reported leak documents?

MS. TIONGSON.  Well, they asked us who accessed the vault, things like that. And they checked on the documents and they noticed that there were markings and maybe, you could …

SEN. LEGARDA.  You can just kindly answer it to the best of your knowledge and ability?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes. Yes.

SEN. LEGARDA.   So, just continue telling me what you are saying.

MS. TIONGSON.  If I may recall, the audit performed the investigation on the side and with regard to asking us, they just asked us point blank if we had anything to do with it and we did not.

SEN. LEGARDA. Have not, did not?

MS. TIONGSON.  We have not. We have done anything …

SEN. LEGARDA.   In your recollection.

MS. TIONGSON.  … about it. I mean, we did not do anything to leak or give out any information or any document to any person.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Did anyone outside of the four of you asked for information regarding the bank documents of CJ Corona which were in the vault? Has anyone approached to you?  Did anyone ask for information …

MS. TIONGSON.  Outside of the four of us, Your Honor?

SEN. LEGARDA.   Yes.

MS. TIONGSON.  It was just in the office of the president, from the office of the president, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  When the investigation was on-going?

MS. TIONGSON.  It actually started when the accounts were closed, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  When the accounts were closed, information was requested from bank officials?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  And this was in connection with the on-going internal audit or investigation?

MS. TIONGSON.  It was not related to the leak document.

SEN. LEGARDA.  This is precede the leak document occurrence or after?

MS. TIONGSON.  When we were asked of certain information, it was by the Sr. Officers, Your Honor, because there was withdrawal, so, we were just requesting for approval. That was it. But to other persons not authorized, we never disclosed anything or give out anything, ma’am.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Yes. So, you categorically state that you …

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, I categorically …

SEN. LEGARDA. … or the three others did not give any information even verbally or any shake manner or form to any one?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  But, can you also say—can you also categorically state that no one has actually asked for information or were there persons or a person who attempted to secure information from you or any of the three who have accessed to the vaults?

MS. TIONGSON.  Your Honor, may I consult my counsel.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Yes, you may.

MS. TIONGSON.  May I ask the Presiding Judge to consult the counsel.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Proceed.

MS. TIONGSON. Your Honor, if I may, there was a certain person who approached me. We went to the branch.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Who is this person?

MS. TIONGSON.  Congressman Banal.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Who is Congressman Banal?  Quezon City, an incumbent Congressman?

MS. TIONGSON.   I think, …

SEN. LEGARDA. May we just know the circumstances in which he went and what he asked you to produce for him?

MS. TIONGSON.  He did not ask me to produce anything.  He just asked if I could help.  And then, he presented sort of the photocopies.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Can you complete the story?  Yes, so that I would not have to piece it together for all of us.  Thank you.

MS. TIONGSON.  We went to the branch and then, I thought he was going to open an account.

Anyway, he presented himself, he introduced himself that he was congressman already because I thought he was still a councillor.  So, he said that maybe we could help him or I could help personally in my capacity.  And then, I said, “I am sorry, that is not possible”.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What help did he wants you to do?

MS. TIONGSON.  Just a guide on certain items in the documents that he was showing.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER. What document was that?

MS. TIONGSON.  He showed a photocopy similar to the one in annex A.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Photocopy of what document?

SEN. LEGARDA.  What photocopy of what document did he present to you?

MS. TIONGSON.  Specimen signature card.  But he was partly covering it so I couldn’t see everything there.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Can you just kindly repeat what he requested you to do and what kind of document he asked you to help him with.  Just for clarity.

MS. TIONGSON.  It wasn’t really clear what he wanted from me, but, he was just asking if I could guide him through the document like he was asking about certain items there, like if I can see …

SEN. LEGARDA.  May we know what date this was, if you recall?

MS. TIONGSON.  It was – I will try to recall, Your Honor.  May I consult my counsel.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Before your counsel, this is just a date.  It doesn’t need …

MS. TIONGSON.  I cannot recall the date, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Was it last year in 2011 or 2012?

MS. TIONGSON.  Just recently, Your Honor, 2012.

SEN. LEGARDA.  The month of January or February?  After New Year, after the month of January or was it the month of February?

MS. TIONGSON.  January, in January, later part.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Later part of January. Did he have a document similar to what is now referred to as annex A?

MS. TIONGSON.  I was not able to see the whole of it because it was partly covered.

SEN. LEGARDA.  But you said, if I recall a few minutes ago, that it was a document similar to annex A.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  With the permission of the Lady Senator.  When you said partly covered …

MS. TIONGSON.  He was covering it, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Congressman Banal was covering the document?

MS. TIONGSON.  He was holding it.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Maybe he was hiding it from you.

MS. TIONGSON.  He was doing like that, Your Honor, he was showing like that (witness demonstrated),

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Like that, I cannot understand like that.  Please describe the manner by which Congressman Banal showed you the document.

MS. TIONGSON.  Your Honor, may I ask to consult …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  No, you answer the question.

MS. TIONGSON.  He was holding piece of—I don’t know how many pages, I think two, two pages of white paper and then he partly opened it and then just pointed out.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What did you see when he opened it?

MS. TIONGSON.  He asked about the …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What did you see when he opened it?

MS. TIONGSON.  It is a signature card, Sir.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Ha?

MS. TIONGSON.  Signature card.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Of what?

MS. TIONGSON.  Of our bank.  So, I asked him where he got it.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Whose signature card was it?

MS. TIONGSON.  Apparently …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Whose signature card was it?

MS. TIONGSON.  Initially, I did not see the name, Your Honor, and  apparently, it was under the name of Chief Justice Corona.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Of?

MS. TIONGSON.  Of Chief Justice Corona, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Did he tell you that?  Did that Congressman tell you?

MS. TIONGSON.  I saw it, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  When the Congressman showed you the document …

MS. TIONGSON.  It was …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Just a minute.

MS. TIONGSON.  Sorry.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  When the Congressman showed you the document that he was partly covering, you saw that it was a signature card.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And that signature card was the signature card of Chief Justice Corona?

MS. TIONGSON.  There was a name there, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER. Precisely.  It was allegedly the signature of Justice Corona.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You showed the imprint of that name on the signature card.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright, and he was covering it up.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And what did he ask you to do by way of help?

MS. TIONGSON.  He asked about dollar signs and I said it was blurred.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  He asked you about a dollar sign.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  How did he ask you about the dollar sign?

MS. TIONGSON.  What is this, is this a dollar sign?  Something like that

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Okay.

MS. TIONGSON.  And then when I said I cannot help him, he just left.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  When did this Congresswoman, was she a woman?

MS. TIONGSON.  Congressman, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Congressman but female or male?

MS. TIONGSON.  Male, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Male.  When did that Congressman see you?

MS. TIONGSON.  I am trying to recall, Your Honor.  Latter part of January.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Was it at a time when we subpoenaed you?

MS. TIONGSON.  Before, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  How many days before?

SEN. LEGARDA.  Mr. President, she said end of January.  May we know to your recollection what day in the end of January, Ms. Tiongson, please?

MS. TIONGSON.  May I refer to a calendar, Your Honor

SEN. LEGARDA.  Yes, okay, thank you.

MS. TIONGSON.  It was a Tuesday, I think.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Can she be given a 2012 calendar.

MS. TIONGSON.  I think it was January 31, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  January 31.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Okay, proceed.

SEN. LEGARDA.  Thank you.  Just a last question, Mr. President.  It was January 31 when you alleged that Congressman Banal requested you for information or assistance on a photocopied document which looks like Annex A.  You are not certain because,…

MS. TIONGSON.  I am not certain, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  … yes, yes, on a dollar and peso account.  But it was also in this court that the prosecution claims they received an Annex A for a copied document on February 2.  If they received it on February 2 from a reported small lady but I actually had it already on January 31.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  So I’m just putting that information before the court, Mr. President, because I am quite confused because if that document was in the possession of the prosecution on February 2, is it another document from the document being shown or that was shown to Ms. Tiongson for verification?  I don’t expect you to answer that question, Ms. Tiongson.  It’s just a question in my mind.  Thank you for that.  My last question is, did you bring the logbook as requested by the court?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. LEGARDA.  At the proper time my colleagues will ask questions about the logbook.  Thank you for your patience.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  May I ask this question first—was the approach of Congressman Banal to you before or after the president of your bank requested you to forward all the records of this account pertaining to Chief Justice Corona to the head office?

MS. TIONGSON.  Before, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Before the records were forwarded to the head office.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor, it was before.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And those signature cards are kept in the vault or steel cabinet that is under the control of two bank officers in your bank, in your branch.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.  They are under the control of two personnel.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And that you did not at any time asked those two branch officers to open the vault.

MS. TIONGSON.  I did, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You asked them to open the vault.

MS. TIONGSON.  We checked the records if they were there and if there is …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Why did you check if the records were there?

MISS TIONGSON.  We went in and we got the folder …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Just a minute.

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You said you did open the steel cabinet to check whether the records were there.  Did you do that …

MISS TIONGSON.  I actually requested …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  … as a consequence of the request of Congressman Banal.

MISS TIONGSON.  No, Your Honor.  It was after he left that we checked the folder, Your Honor.  I requested them to get it so we can review it.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And the signature cards were there?

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Did you not ask Congressman Banal, how did he happen to be in possession of that signature card?

MISS TIONGSON.  I did, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And what was his answer?

MISS TIONGSON.  I will tell you if you as soon as you help us.  Something like that.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  No, I want the exact words of Congressman Banal if you can remember it.

MISS TIONGSON.  If you will help us, I can tell you.  Something like that, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  How they got it?  In other words …

MISS TIONGSON.  I asked him, Sir, how did you get that?

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And what did he say?

MISS TIONGSON.  So many people are helping us.  Something like that.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So many people.  In other words, he admitted that they got this record from your record.

MISS TIONGSON.  Not necessarily, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What do you mean by not necessarily?

MISS TIONGSON.  Because it can come from other sources, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Can your …

MISS TIONGSON.  I cannot say.  I really don’t know, Your Honor, but it did not come from us.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Wait a minute.  (Gavel)  How can they have an access to your record under the security procedure that you described to us?  How can anyone …

MISS TIONGSON.  I do not know, Your Honor, but looking at it, from annex …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  But he said, I will tell you if you will help us.

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes, but he did not because I said, I’m sorry I cannot help you.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Meaning he will tell you how he got it if you will help him.

MISS TIONGSON.  Something like that.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Okay.  Majority Floor Leader.

SEN. SOTTO.  Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago wants the floor and then Senator Pangilinan, but right after, we can move for a break, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Yes.  The Gentle Lady from Iloilo.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  With the indulgence of our colleagues, it seems to me—it seems even to myself that the prosecution has my good side today.

So let me ask you, Miss Witness, before he appeared before you identifying himself as Congressman Banal, did you know personally his face or his appearance?  Did you have some definite recollection of how Congressman Banal looks?

MISS TIONGSON.  Actually, I met him before in one event in Xavierville I.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  What event was that?

MISS TIONGSON.  It was an inauguration of the new court that was built.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  New what?

MISS TIONGSON.  Covered court.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  Oh, covered court.

So you are sure that when he walked into your office, even before he introduced he introduced himself, you already recognized him as Congressman.

MISS TIONGSON.  Yes.  And then my officer said that Councillor Banal is here, or something.  So parang …

SEN. SANTIAGO.  That’s how he introduced himself?

MISS TIONGSON.  No, that’s not how he introduced himself.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  What did he say?

MISS TIONGSON.  So, he said that he is already a congressman.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  So there is no doubt in your mind that that was Congressman Banal you were talking to and not a possible person who was just using the congressman’s name?

MISS TIONGSON.  No doubt, Your Honor.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  Good.  That’s already on record.

Now, let me see.  When you said, “We will show you if you help us.”  Didn’t you bother to ask who was us?

MISS TIONGSON.  When he introduced himself as parang part of the Secretariat or something, I did not ask him anymore because I was so shocked with what he showed me.  Parang …

SEN. SANTIAGO.  He was saying, in effect, that there was a group behind him, isn’t that so?  Because he said “We’ll help you if you will help us.”

MISS TIONGSON.  Something like that, Your Honor.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  Yes.  Didn’t you, in the course of your conversation, elicit the name of the group to which he belong when he said he might have been a member of some Secretariat or something?

MS. TIONGSON.  I couldn’t recall, Your Honor, but as far as I am concerned, he was parang elusive.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  Elusive.

MS. TIONGSON.  He was elusive, yes.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  Elusive, is that your word?

MS. TIONGSON.  Parang he was not divulging a lot of things.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  All right.  The mere fact that he was trying to cover the document, seems to support your answer now.  Was that one of the basis?  What are your bases for saying that he appeared to be elusive?

MS. TIONGSON.  He did not want to disclose anything other than what he showed me and what he asked.  And then, I was asking him to give me the document so I can examine it further, but he did not give it to me.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  Did you ask him, where did you get this document?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, I did.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  You told him, I cannot help you, Sir, because this appear to be foreign currency documents, in effect, is that what you said to him?

MS. TIONGSON.  I cannot help you, Sir.  I am sorry, we cannot disclose anything about any account …

SEN. SANTIAGO.  About any account …

MS. TIONGSON.  … or any person or any client.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  Was he asking about a foreign currency account, can you remember or any account at all?

MS. TIONGSON.  He did not particularly ask about any account, Your Honor, just certain figures like dollar sign, if it was really a dollar sign or something like that.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  So, he was just making an overture and you frustrated his intentions.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  Very good of you as a bank official, you were obeying the law, but I am very interested about this approach of Congressman Banal, and for that reason, Mr. President, I would like to request a subpoena should be issued to Congressman Banal.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Granted.

SEN. SANTIAGO.  Since you already have a categorical identification by the witness.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Granted.

Session is suspended for …

SEN. SOTTO.  May we have one question from Senator Arroyo, Mr. President, before the suspension.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  May I just suspend the session for one minute.

It was 4:42 p.m.

At 5:16 p.m., the trial resumed.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Trial resumes.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, earlier, before the suspension of the trial, the Presiding Officer mentioned that a subpoena be issued to Congressman Banal.  There are Members of the court who would like to instead invite him first instead of issuing a subpoena considering that he is a Member of the House of Representatives.  Perhaps, we can do that, Mr. President, or we can take it up on Monday during the caucus.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What is the pleasure of the Lady Senator from Iloilo who made the motion?

SEN. SOTTO.  Perhaps …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Is the Lady Senator from Iloilo still here?

SEN. SOTTO.  Well, the moment, Mr. President, I will try to … I will do my best to get in touch with her at the soonest possible time and ask if she is amenable to my proposition and the proposition of the other Members of the court.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Anyway, you can move for a motion reconsideration of the ruling given the fact that no one objected.  So, it can be decided by the body.

SEN. SOTTO.  Yes.  I so move, Mr. President, that we invite instead.  May we recognize Senator Arroyo.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Senator Arroyo has the floor.

SEN. ARROYO.  Mr. President, I think in respect to Congressman Banal, we should just invite him as an interparliamentary court courtesy.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Any objection to the motion to reconsider the previous motion of the Lady Senator from Iloilo which was approved by the Chair to just invite this Member of the House of Representatives to appear here to explain his side.  Hearing none, the  motion is approved.

SEN. ARROYO.  Just one question, Mr. President.  May I?

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Proceed.

SEN. ARROYO.  I just want to find out.  Is Congressman Banal a member of the House Judiciary Committee, Committee on Justice and Human Rights or whatever?

REP. TUPAS.  Your Honor, he is an ex-officio member of the Justice Committe.

SEN. ARROYO.  Why ex-officio?

REP. TUPAS.  He is a Deputy Majority Leader.  One of the Deputy Majority Leaders and he is an ex-officio member of the Justice Committee.

SEN. ARROYO.  That is all I want to know.  Thank you.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Majority Floor Leader.

SEN. SOTTO.  May we recognize the birthday celebrant tomorrow, Mr. President, Senator Jinggoy Estrada.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Senator Jinggoy Estrada has the floor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Thank you, Mr. President.  Isang katangungan lang kay Congressman Tupas.  Mayroon po tayong bagong rebelasyon, na si Congressman Banal daw ang unang nakakuha noong sinasabing dokumento, ayon doon sa testigo.  Sino ba talaga and nauna, si Congressman Banal o iyong pag-abot noong maliit na babae noon kay Congressman Umali?

REP. TUPAS.  Your Honor, ako, wala akong alam doon sa nangyari before noong February 2 ng gabi, kasi iyong, nakuha ko iyong dokumento, noong pinakauna nakita ko iyon, nakita ko po, February 2 ng gabi at kaya noong kinabukasan, in-attach na namin doon sa supplemental request for subpoena.

SEN. ESTRADA.  So, iyong ginamit in-attach doon sa supplemental request iyon iyong galing kay Congressman Umali?

REP. TUPAS.  Yes, po.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Hindi kay Congressman Banal?

REP. TUPAS.  Galing po kay Congressman Umali, ibinigay sa akin.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Alright, thank you.

Madam Witness, noong December 12, 2011, do you recall how the withdrawals of the three accounts were made?

MS. TIONGSON.  I will try, Your Honor, to recall.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Will we wait for your answer? Okay, we can wait.  Just try to recall how the three withdrawals were made with the three accounts.

MS. TIONGSON.  There are so many transactions in the branch. Normally, I would like to refer to a document, so I can be sure, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Okay, sure.

MS. TIONGSON. I don’t have any document with me, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA. So, you are—how was it paid, was it withdrawn in cash? .  Was it paid through manager’s check?

 

MS. TIONGSON. No, it’s via a MC.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Through manager’s check. Okay. Did anyone—did you receive a call from, maybe, the depositor or from anybody that a large or a huge amount will be withdrawn on that day?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA. From whom?

MS. TIONGSON.  From the depositor, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Si Chief Justice Corona mismo ang tumawag sa inyo?

MS. TIONGSON.  He sent—let me recall, Your Honor, medyo matagal na. If I remember it correctly, Your Honor, he sent an authorization letter to his wife.

SEN. ESTRADA.  And then?

MS. TIONGSON.  So that his wife may get the …

SEN. ESTRADA.  May withdraw?

MS. TIONGSON.  … manager’s check.

SEN. ESTRADA.  May withdraw?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  So, you only received a written authority coming from the depositor?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. ESTRADA.  Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  When the accounts were closed, in effect, you were required to allow the withdrawal of the funds from the custody of the bank, isn’t it?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And you did comply with the request to close the account, correct?

MS. TIONGSON.    Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And was cash withdrawn to cover the total amount of the three accounts closed?

MS. TIONGSON.  Manager’s check, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Manager’s check. So, do you have copies of those manager’s check?

MS. TIONGSON.    We have the duplicate copy, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You have a copy of those manager’s check when they were encashed to draw the cash account …

MS. TIONGSON.    They were not encashed, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Until today, they are not—the manager’s check have not returned to the bank.

MS. TIONGSON.  I will have to check on that, Your Honor, if it was—if they were already negotiated.

you mean this was endorsed to another, possibly another bank?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. PANGILINAN. Or to another account?  If it is another account, you would know.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  But you do not know.

MS. TIONGSON.  They were not deposited or negotiated to get another account in the bank, Your Honor.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  I see.  Well, anyway, Mr. President, as was earlier ordered by the Presiding Officer that the related documents including that the Presiding Officer said earlier with respect to these withdrawals and the transactions where it was transferred, will be submitted by the bank, for the record.

Thank You.

SEN. SOTTO.  Senator Drilon, Mr. President, wishes to be recognized.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER. The Gentleman from Iloilo.

SEN. DRILON. Just a few questions, Mr. President.

Your bank president earlier testified that there were two other accounts.  Would you know if this account is with your branch?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  It is with your branch?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes.

SEN. DRILON.  Okay.  Do you have the documents on these two other accounts?

MS. TIONGSON.  It is with our president, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  It is with your president.  You mean, it is in the main office.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  Not in the possession of the president now.  You wouldn’t know.

MS. TIONGSON. No, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  Okay.  But, what is certain is that there are two additional accounts.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Just to complete the information.  The two accounts were accounts maintained in the Katipunan branch of the PS Bank?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  Now, these documents pertaining to these accounts will be brought on the next hearing.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  Now, the accounts mentioned are all in the name of Renato Coronado Corona?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  Now, you mentioned that the depositor, meaning the Chief Justice sent an authorization for the closing of the three accounts on December 12, 2011 through his wife, the wife being Cristina.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  Now, the Cristina Corona have separate accounts with your bank?

MS. TIONGSON.  I don’t know, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  You don’t know.  You do not know it could exist, it may not exist, is that correct?

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON.  Would you also please check whether or not Cristina Corona would have accounts in Katipunan branch for the next hearing?  And do we have to issue a subpoena or is it enough that this request is being made today?

MS. TIONGSON.  May I consult.  Subpoena, Your Honor.

SEN. DRILON. You prefer a subpoena.  In that case, may I request that a subpoena be issued for the specific account of Cristina Corona, who is the spouse of the Chief Justice.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Since the bank officials are here, and since this is an impeachment case, and there is an exemption regarding revelation of bank deposits in an impeachment case, may we know whether you would voluntarily bring the records of those two other accounts to this Impeachment Court.  So that if you don’t, then we will issue a subpoena.

MS. TIONGSON.  Sir, I prefer a subpoena for my protection.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  May I request the president of the bank to answer the question.

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, we understand that this is an order from the Impeachment Court, we will comply on the basis of…

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Yes.  The Chair confirms that it is an order of the impeachment court for you to bring the records pertaining to these two accounts mentioned by the Gentleman from Iloilo.

MR. GARCIA.  We will do so, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright.  You will bring them in the next hearing of this case which will be the next Monday from today at 2 o’clock in the afternoon.  Do you understand the order of the court?  Please say so for the record.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor, we understand the order of the court.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright.

SEN. DRILON.  We will just await those records, Mr. President.  And just to complete it also,  the president of the bank mentioned that he has an idea where the P17 million which was closed under Account No. 089-121023848 for P17 million on December 12, 2011 he specifically said “I have an idea where the P17 million went but I do not want to speculate.”  So maybe he can also bring the documents on this point so that we do not have to speculate.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What is the response of the president of the bank?

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, my response actually at that time was made in the context of an idea wherefrom the time deposit it was paid out to.  So in that particular aspect as far as the payment of out of the time deposit through whatever facility or crediting, that was the context of my reply, Your Honor.  But I did not want to categorically state it because I wasn’t sure about it.  I could remember that the time deposit was credited to one particular account.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Credited to one particular account in your bank.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.  But I am not conclusively certain about it.  I will verify our records and then go to the court.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER. Okay.  Does that satisfy you?

SEN. DRILON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright.  I understand that there was a request from the Gentleman from Iloilo to subpoena the accounts, if any, of Mrs. Corona.  Is that…

SEN. DRILON.  Well, the witness already said that—yes, there was a request, Your Honor, because of the answers of Ms. Tiongson that there were actually—did Ms. Tiongson say there were accounts or she will check if there are accounts?

MS. TIONGSON.  I will check.

SEN. DRILON.  She will check and if there are accounts, she will bring it here, the documents.

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright.

MS. CAYETANO (P.).  Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Lady Senator.

SEN. CAYETANO (P.).  Thank you.

Mr. President, I would just like to get guidance from His Honor as to how we are expected to treat the specific amount which was—I only have the last three digits, the 848 which was opened on June 29, 2011, closed on December 12, 2011 for P17 million because it is outside of the coverage of Article II.  So I would just like to get direction on how we, as Senator-Judges, are expected to treat this.  Because I cannot comprehend how this is covered by Article II and if we are now looking at this from money laundering standpoint.  I would just like to get direction and this also goes for the opening of other accounts and including the transfer of the account.  I am definitely interested in the pursuit of justice but I still need to understand how it relates specifically to Article II because this is why this witness is being presented.  So we do not get confuse by the issues, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  I would suggest that we take this up in our caucus on Monday.

SEN. CAYETANO (P.).  And I would be very happy to but I take this up because we already have additional documents now which later may go into a year-end that is beyond the scope of Article II which for the records ends, as far as I recall, on December 31, 2010.  Thank you.

SEN. DRILON.  If the Senate President will allow us, we do want to raise this question.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Proceed.

SEN DRILON.  The relevance and that is why precisely we are trying to find out the manager’s check—there was a manager’s check issued to withdraw P17 million, where was this manager’s check negotiated, if and the witness is not even certain as to whether it was negotiated, or it’s still outstanding, and therefore, it becomes relevant because on December 31 of 2011, this could be part of the assets which would be—Of course, I’m sorry, I withdraw that, Mr. President.  This could be part of the determination of the court as to whether or not there are unreported assets, Your Honor.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  But …

SEN. DRILON.  We do appreciate that we should discuss this in caucus, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Whatever values a person owns at the given date, then my understanding of the requirement for the preparation of statement of assets and liabilities and net worth, all those must be included.  Now, whether they are in the form of cash, in the form of properties, in the form of real estate property, or in the form of securities or investments.

Now, manager’s checks are actually cash.  They have the nature of a cash asset of a taxpayer because you can negotiate them anytime and you can convert them into cash.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, Senator Bongbong Marcos wishes to be recognized.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Gentleman from Ilocos Norte.

SEN. MARCOS.  Just as a suggestion, Mr. President.  I note that we had provisionally issued a subpoena for Congressman Banal.  I am in receipt of information that he is in fact in the building.  And perhaps we could just invite him to come and explain whether he can confront the witness and explain what exactly the events that transpired during his visit to the bank.  Just as a suggestion, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Well, if he is in the building, well, this Chair has no objection if he will appear and clear the air about his supposed involvement in this matter.

SEN. SOTTO.  Before that, Mr. President, may we recognize Senator Joker Arroyo before we decide.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Gentleman from Makati and Bicol.

SEN. ARROYO.  Any witness—Any person has the right to prepare.  So, give Congressman Banal time to prepare because we cannot keep a shotgun question here.  So, I think, let the invitation stand as—I hope you will agree, Senator Marcos

Thank you.

SEN. MARCOS.  Very well.  But certainly because the issues—I was just making the suggestion so we do not have to confront the issue as to whether or not to subpoena a fellow Member of Congress, because if he would be amenable to come and testify, maybe not today, maybe on Monday, on the strength of an invitation, then that problem will not have to be confronted by the court.

That was my thinking, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  I leave it to the distinguished Gentleman from Congress.  If he’s in the building to voluntarily come, and if he wants to clear the air about his involvement so that it will not be left hanging to the speculation of the public, he may do so.

SEN. ARROYO.  Mr. President.  Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Gentleman from Makati and Bicol.

SEN. ARROYO.  Quite frankly, this shotgun invitation let us give him a chance.  Let him come Monday, and then—or rather that just because he is roaming around here, and then suddenly, his name is mentioned, I mean, you know, we are not in the habit of anyone who is mentioned here and he is around, then, we will invite him to testify, I mean, that is …

SEN. SOTTO.  Anyway, Mr. President.  Mr.  President, it was merely a suggestion, I think, on the side of Senator Marcos, para makaiwas lang sa mga problema pa, but, anyway, it is up to him.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Well, anyway, to avoid any further discussion, let us invite him to come on Monday.

SEN. SOTTO.  Okay.  No objection, Mr. President.  Senator Pangilinan wishes to …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Gentleman from Pampanga.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  Just two more follow-up quick questions to the witness.

Madam Witness, you said that you are familiar with two more accounts, but you’d like to get the documents.  And you have said, that there have been, on December 12, there were withdrawals for three accounts, not of these two accounts, would you know in these two other accounts, were there withdrawals too on December 12?

MS. TIONGSON.  May I refer to the document?

SEN. PANGILINAN.  Yes.  Last December 12, 2011.

MS.TIONGSON.  Sir, there were two withdrawals on the accounts that were covered by the initial subpoena, and the other withdrawal was the one of the additional, I think, if I may recall—I will have to check on that.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  So, there were three withdrawals on December 12.

MS. TIONGSON.  I think so, Your Honor.  I will check on it.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  My question is, and we have already established that.  For the two accounts that you say, you don’t have the records now, and you will be bringing it on Monday, would you know if there were—because you are the bank manager, and therefore, if there were withdrawals on the same day, December 12, on these two other accounts, and therefore, would you know if there were five withdrawals for these peso accounts, or you are just familiar with three?

MS. TIONGSON.  I cannot say.  I will have to check, Your Honor, to be sure.

SEN. PANGILINAN.  You will have to check.  Okay.  Thank you. Thank you, Mr. President.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Your Honor, please.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Gentleman from the defense.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Since we are prohibited, Your Honor, by the rules of this impeachment court, to make any objection, to any manifestation or examination by a member of this honorable court, Your Honor, I will just place on record our observation with respect to the documents sought to be produced, Your Honor.

It will be noted that there is nothing mentioned about—with specific–and concretely, Your Honor, about the accounts being mentioned, Your Honor.  But apparently, the witness is being bulldozed to make an admission to the effect that there are accounts, there are deposits made, although, it is not mentioned, Your Honor.  It is not specifically delineated nor particularized, Your Honor.

We want to say of record, with due apologies to this court, Your Honor, that this necessarily partakes of a fishing expedition, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Noted.  To be fair, counsel, in the course of the testimony of the witness, and I think, it was the president of the bank who revealed that there were other accounts.

We did not fish for that information.  It was the president of the bank who mentioned about the existence of, first, one account, which he described into the records, and second, he said, there are two other accounts, but that he could not remember the details of these two accounts, but it was not a fishing expedition.  It was a part of the testimony of the bank president.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  There is no question, Your Honor, about the nature of the revelation made by the—but our point of observation, Your Honor, is that, these are matters not alleged in the complaint, neither is it part of the impeachment complaint, Your Honor, under impeachment Article No. II. Because …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  We deemed it covered under paragraph 2.3.

JUSTICE.  2.2 and 2.3 Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Yes.  2.2  and 2.3 of Article II.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Allegedly, these are deposits made even after the filing of the complaint in this case, Your Honor.  If I remember correctly, the complaint was filed in this case way back in December 2010.  2011, Your Honor.  The subject matter dealt with in the questioning of the honorable Members of the court deal with accounts opened after this date.  And withdrawals made after this date also, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  This goes into the issue of whether the SALN at the end of 2011 covered all the assets of the party making that SALN because if, indeed, he had in his possession P1 billion on that date, on or before December 31, and he did not include that in his SALN, that means that there is a non-inclusion of an asset, isn’t it?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  But the acquisitions, Your Honor, together with the opening of the accounts mentioned and the withdrawals, were effected after the filing of the complaint, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Correct.  Correct.  Well, we are discussing a point of practice in the bank  If I deposited an amount at the beginning of the year, and then I withdrew it one month before the end of the year and I hold a manager’s check, how do you characterize the manager’s check?   Is that an asset, a liability?  What?

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Apparently, these are evidence being presented, Your Honor.  And our point is, it is not circumscribed neither does it fall within the ambit of the complaint, Your Honor.  It is a right of Chief Justice Corona, Your Honor, not to be asked to explain nor to make any statement with respect to those that do not fall within the coverage of the information complaint.  That is only our point, Your Honor.

SEN. CAYETANO (P.).  Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Just a minute please.  May I have my time to discuss the matter with the defense counsel.  Your Honor, I know a little bit of accounting.  And when you prepare your balance sheet at the end of the year, which is actually the nature of the SALN, a balance sheet, a personal balance sheet, whatever is the nature of the asset that you have, whether it is a bank deposit, cash on hand, in real terms an actual cash, including your real properties, you ought to include that in your SALN.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  May I continue, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Yes.  Yes.  You are free to discuss with the Chair.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Your Honor please, I am not questioning, neither the defense is questioning the production or the submission of any of these documents being referred to, Your Honor.  What we are raising is a point which is very, very material insofar as the right to be informed of the nature of the charge and accusation against him on the part of the respondent, impeachable public officer.  If we examine, the complaint, Your Honor, the SALN deal with or in question, are only those until 2010, Your Honor.  Therefore, any SALN after that is no longer within the coverage of the information.  If this is a criminal case, Your Honor, certainly, evidence to that effect must be excluded …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Was the SALN alleged in Article II specifically referring to December 2010? SEN. CAYETANO (P.). Mr. President, we haven’t filed 2011 yet. That was the point I was saying since I was standing earlier.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  So, how would—thank you, for the clarification.  That is my point, Your Honor, first, it could not have been within the coverage of the complaint for the reason that this complaint was filed 2010, Your Honor, 2011, and this accusation depositing this amount, withdrawing it are beyond the period covered in the impeachment complaint.

Now, while it is true …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.    Well, my suggestion, Your Honors, so that we—I can debate, we can discuss this lengthily.

At the proper time when your turn to present your evidence in chief, you can traverse this and say where these assets did not exist in the year 2010, so they could not have been included in the SALN of the respondent in 2010.  They arose only at the beginning of 2011 and which this case, your position is proper.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  In that course, thank you, your Honor, for the advise, Your Honor, but my point is a question of procedure and jurisdiction. If we are agreed that the information or the complaint in this case charges only matters taking place up within the period by the impeachment complaint, Your Honor, then any and all assets thereafter certainly be irregular, immaterial.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  My understanding of Article 2 of the Articles of Impeachment is that it alleges nondisclosure …

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Right, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   … of SALN for that year.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Right, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.    And non-inclusion of assets existing during that taxable year.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Correct, Your Honor. Sorry, sorry.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright. So, at the end of the period, the taxable period, the taxpayer or the public official is required to make a balance sheet for himself, which is known as statement of assets and liabilities and net worth.  If you study any balance sheet, that is actually what it is, a statements of assets, liabilities and net worth of a corporation, of an individual. So, my understanding, my humble understanding is that in preparing any balance sheet, then, all liabilities, current during the year involved and all assets existing during the year involved and the difference between the liability and the totality of the assets at the end of the year involved will be reflected in the SALN.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  With the due indulgence of this Honorable Court, Your Honor, I am not—the defense has not gone into the extent of questioning the admissibility of the evidence now being presented, we are raising a very specific issue, Your Honor, and that is any and all matters subsequent to the filing of the complaint cannot be the subject of the impeachment complaint. That is out point although, …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   Anyway, you will have a time to traverse when you present your evidence in chief.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  We will do that, Your Honor.  Anyway, we are not precluded from resorting to other available remedies in favor of the Chief Justice, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   Yes.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  But we just want, we just place it on record, Your Honor, because while these matters are being discussed to the questioning of the members of this court, we cannot object, Your Honor.  That is our only point, to place on record where our observation to the effect that these matter being dealt with now in the examination are no longer within the coverage of the complaint, Your Honor.  That is only our point, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  If, indeed, any of those mentioned assets did not exist in the year concerned and that they arose subsequently after December 31, 2010 and you can show that that is so, then, the proper motion could be made at that point.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  I did so, Your Honor, and we have gone this far because the court probably noticed when the withdrawal of that amount, I think P17 million, was made, Your Honor. It was already 2011, and therefore, how that—where that money came from, how it was dispose of and where was it brought.  It was already beyond that period mentioned.  That is our only point, Your Honor.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Anyway, as I have said, we will discuss that when the time comes.

JUSTICE CUEVAS.  Thank you, Your Honor.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, we may excuse the witness if there is no other question that will be—we would just like to ask—the court is asking for the logbook that was supposed to have been presented.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  May we have the logbook

MS. TIONGSON.  Yes, Sir.

SEN. SOTTO. Senator Estrada will look into the logbook, Mr. President.  And then, finally, also the original that was asked of the signature cards, the original that can be compared asked of the president, PS Bank president, the members of the court are also asking Mr. President.  So that we may excuse the witnesses after.

ATTY. PUNO.  May I be allowed to address the honourable court.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Yes.

ATTY. PUNO.  All the documents that have been directed by the Senate to be brought by the PS Bank are with us, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What are those documents to be specific?

 

 

ATTY. PUNO.  The logbooks of those that have access to the vault in PS Bank, Katipunan branch, the original signature card that was supposed to be compared with annex A of the request for subpoena of the prosecution, the—pardon me, Your Honor, I’ll just–.we have a written compliance which we are going to file …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  When you prepare any inventory of the documents that you are presenting to this court, submit it formally for the record and guidance of this court.

ATTY. PUNO.  We do have it already, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Precisely.  Now, may I recall the president of the bank to the witness stand if we are thru with this witness.

SEN. SOTTO.  Yes, we may excuse Ms. Tiongson, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Because, the Presiding Officer  would like to clarify certain points.

President Garcia.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You said and the witness, Ms. Tiongson said that all the records of bank accounts of the respondent Chief Justice were transferred to the head office at a certain point when this impeachment case was filed or imminent to be filed.  Correct?

MR. GARCIA.  After it was filed, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  After.  How long after it was filed

MR. GARCIA.  On the day that we were advised that there was an inquiry about the …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  When was that?

MR. GARCIA.  I believe it was January 31, Tuesday.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  January 31.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  January 31, Tuesday.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The current year?

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  Were these documents filed up in an envelope, sealed envelope?  How were they transferred from the Katipunan Branch to the central office of PS Bank?

MR. GARCIA.  Well, if I may recount, Your Honor.  We got information from the branch through the supervision chain that there was an inquiry made about the account and we met with the branch manager and the other officers and staff.  I personally was there on that day.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Will you repeat what you said

MR. GARCIA.  We immediately asked them to control the documents.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who are they?

MR. GARCIA.  The branch officers.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who are those branch officers that you asked?

MR. GARCIA.  Annabelle Tiongson and—Icannot recall anymore the operations officer, Your Honor, but I could give you the details tomorrow.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  No.  Did you also instruct the branch manager and the two officers-custodian of the documents placed in a steel cabinet to transfer those documents pertaining to the accounts of the Chief Justice…

MR. GARCIA.  I did, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  … to the central office.

MR. GARCIA.  I met with them that evening immediately and went through the details of the day and…

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You know, the trouble with us, we ask you a question and you do not answer the question.

MR. GARCIA.  I’m sorry, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You are digressing, prolonging the proceeding, the question is very specific.  I’m trying to analyze my question in a very specific manner to be answered with a specific answer.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So answer my question.

MR. GARCIA.  I believe you question was, did I instruct?  Yes, I did, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You did.

MR. GARCIA.  I did.  I instructed…

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And what happened when you instructed, they comply?

MR. GARCIA.  They complied, Your Honor

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  How did they comply?

MR. GARCIA.  They complied by turning it over the next day to senior officers that I instructed to personally go to the branch to control the documents and bring them to head office.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You said they, who are they?

MR. GARCIA.  The branch officers, Your Honor, including Ms. Tiongson.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The branch officers, plural.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who are these branch officers?

MR. GARCIA.  I cannot recall the other officer, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You know why I want to be specific?  To find out the people that are possible causes of the leak.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.  I can provide that information.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright.  They brought documents to your office.

MR. GARCIA.  The senior officers brought it to my office, yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who are these senior officers?

MR. GARCIA.  As mentioned by the branch manager, Mr. Ismael Reyes, I directed him to personally control the documents from the branch to head office.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You instructed the branch officer, Ms. Tiongson, to control the documents and to bring those documents to your office.

MR. GARCIA.  To turn over to our senior officers who physically brought it to me, Your Honor, to our head office.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  We do not understand each other.

MR. GARCIA.  I’m sorry, Your Honor

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So I will repeat.  You instructed Ms. Tiongson to gather all the documents that you need to turn over these documents to you in your office?

MR. GARCIA.  I instructed them to gather all the documents, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  For heaven’s sake, who are them?

MR. GARCIA.  I’m sorry, Your Honor.  Annabelle Tiongson and second officer of the branch.  I can’t recall, Your Honor, right now.  I will come back tomorrow, in the next  hearing and give you that particular information because I’m not…

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Alright.  So the documents were brought to your office the following day.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Describe the way they were brought to your office.

MR. GARCIA.  Well, they were brought to my office by the senior officer and I instructed actually that they be properly and more strictly controlled.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Were the documents loose or in a folder or bundled?  Will you please describe the documents as far as their appearance when they were handed to you.

MR. GARCIA.  They were in a folder in the latch, Your Honor, and I instructed them to please …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  How many folders were submitted to you?

MR. GARCIA.  My apologies, Your Honor.  I cannot recall but I think there were two.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Or three?

MR. GARCIA.  I’m sorry, Your Honor, I cannot recall.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Or four?

MR. GARCIA.  I really am sorry, Your Honor, I cannot recall.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  It could also be one.

MR. GARCIA.  It could be, Your Honor, but my main concern was to confirm and secure documents most stringently.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Okay.  Now we’re talking something.  To control the documents.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  How did you control them?

MR. GARCIA.  We make sure that they were …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who are they?  Who are we?

MR. GARCIA.  Me and my team, Your Honor.  I …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who are your teams?

MR. GARCIA.  My executive vice president, my branch banking group head.  We designated people who will now handle it.  We made sure that it is controlled in a very secure place, well secure.  Do not let other people know my instructions …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What is that very well secure place?  Was it a room?  Was it a vault?

MR. GARCIA.  A vault, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  A vault.  What kind of a vault?

MR. GARCIA.  It’s a vault in our head office with dual access and dual control.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What do you mean by dual access and dual control?

MR. GARCIA.  Like the branch, Your Honor, no one can personally or seemingly access anything in that particular vault.  There has to be two officers who will open the vault together.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  In the particular case of these documents, did you read the documents piece by piece before you put them in the vault?

MR. GARCIA.  No, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who placed them in the vault?

MR. GARCIA.  The officers who were designated to control …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who are they?

MR. GARCIA.  My apologies, Your Honor, I cannot recall, but my instructions were to the senior officers and those that were …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Where you present when they placed it in the vault?

MR. GARCIA.  No, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So you do not know whether they placed it in the vault without reading them or whether they read them first before they placed it in the vault?

MR. GARCIA.  Well, my specific instructions were to seal them.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Yes, you gave them that instruction.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Sir.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  But you do not know what they did with it, whether they obeyed you or disobeyed you?

MR. GARCIA.  I cannot say, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You cannot vouch?

MR. GARCIA.  I cannot vouch, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  You do not know also the exact time when they placed it in the vault …

MR. GARCIA.  No, Your Honor

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  … from the time you gave the instruction up to the time they actually placed it in the vault?

MR. GARCIA.  No, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  And you do not know whether there were other people who handled those documents after you gave the instruction?

MR. GARCIA.  No, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  So, who are the people designated to perform the dual access and dual control?

MR. GARCIA.  I cannot recall right now, Your Honor.  I would need to verify with my other senior officers to find out …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  I thought you wanted this to be very, very secure, and that in order to safeguard the integrity of those documents, you just left it to these people without seeing to it that your instructions were obeyed?

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, in our conduct in the bank, we normally give instructions to our clerks and we do not see it through bound to the last until—of lodgement in the vault.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Why?

MR. GARCIA.  I just wanted to secure this document …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Why?  Because you consider all your employees as saints.

MR. GARCIA.  Well, that’s—Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  That’s the implicit assumption.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor, especially because they were now being handled by my more senior officers, but not in the branch.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  Then how can you explain that there are now claims that some documents, almost a replica of documents in your bank are in the hands of strangers?

MR. GARCIA.  We cannot explain that, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Unexplainable.

MR. GARCIA.  We cannot explain that but …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You cannot, in anyway, conceive that it would happen?

MR. GARCIA.  Based on what we—we have to verify, Your Honor, and annex documents, there are discrepancies that we can note.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Correct, but those discrepancies are simply, as you described them, discrepancies, but the rest, removing the discrepancies, are not discrepancies, they are authentic reproduction of the documents in your possession.  Correct?

MR. GARCIA.  The information is authentic, Your Honor, but within the annex A and the regional, the way some of that information is indicated is different.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Correct, but only to the extent that they were indicated, but those same information would be in the document in the possession of the bank.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  How would anybody know those information, although, they were not properly indicated, according to your bank procedures in a document– in the hands of other people?

MR. GARCIA.  I would have no idea, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  No explanation.

MR. GARCIA.  No explanation.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  No possible explanation.

MR. GARCIA.  I would not want—it will all be speculation, but I really have no idea.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   It is not speculation.  You admitted that there are authentic details that are found in your document, and yet, they also—were found in the document.

MR. GARCIA.  The personal details are authentic, Your Honor, most of the details are authentic, after certain point, but there are differences, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Precisely.  To the extent of the authentic details, those could not have been known to people, if they had no access to your documents.

MR. GARCIA.  I think, that is—if they had the information about account numbers, then that would be …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who are they?

MR. GARCIA.  Anyone who had—in that information, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  How would anybody—can you explain to us, how anybody would be able to gain an information of the number of digits of bank account numbers in your bank, unless they have access to the entire document?

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, this information is—many of the information with respect to bank accounts are common.  For, example, when you issue a cheque, your bank account number actually, is written on the cheque, when you deposit cheques into your accounts, the banks that receive will always indicate your account number at the back of the cheque, and send it actually to the issuing bank for clearing, because when the cheques come back, if the cheques come back, we would know which account number to credit …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.

MR. GARCIA.  The bank certifications, Your Honor, are issued to different offices, visa for visa.  There are also instances when we have many customers who use their accounts for receipt of payment, and they let their clients know about the account numbers, and then their clients …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  I will not prolong this point, with respect to the number of the account, but the details, outside the number of the accounts, are those of written in cheques that are being issued against that account of a given number?

MR. GARCIA.  Your Honor, the documents did not show other details other than dates, account numbers, and the signatures of those that have processed them.  The other information on the data, Your Honor, are public information, you know, I mean, the address, what is this—some other details of the customer.  They really are public.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  I will direct you a very specific and candid question.

Could any—could you, as president, reproduce a document containing all the details involving a specific account, deposit account in your bank?

MR. GARCIA.  Involving a specific account.  Details like account number, Your Honor?

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Account number including the transactions and the operations in that account.

MR. GARCIA.  In this particular instance, Your Honor, there are no other information on the data, Your Honor.  It says, account numbers, dates, they are not transactional information.  There are no amounts indicated so it could be up to the bank.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  I read to you yesterday, when I examined you about the account or the document attached to the supplemental request for a subpoena by the prosecution, can you offhand reproduce a document like that for any bank deposit account of a client from your memory?

MR. GARCAI.  Memory, no.  Not completely, Your Honor, because you need signatures of the depositors.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Now, after you received the documents and according to you the documents from the branch, and you instructed your officials to put it in a secured area, vault, do you know if there was any occasion where your officials, including you, opened that vault?

MR. GARCIA.  I am not aware right now.  Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  But is it possible that they opened those vaults at any given time between the time that they were brought to you up to the time that …

MR. GARCIA.  It is possible, Your Honor, but you will need two officers who had custody of the documents.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who would be those two?

MR. GARCIA.  Those who have custody of the documents.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Who were those two that you designated to become the controllers of opening the vault?

MR. GARCIA.  I am sorry, Your Honor, but at this present time, I cannot really recall who was … I would need to get details and provide to you after.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  You did not designate then specific officials of the bank.

MR. GARCIA.  I designated  my executive vice-president, and branch banking head to control them and make sure that …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What are them?

MR. GARCIA.  The documents, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Control the documents, and they in turn designated the people who would take care of the vault.

MR. GARCIA.  Yes, Your Honor.  They may have controlled it themselves.  I am not really certain.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  But you do not know the person that they designated to control the vault.

MR. GARCIA.  No, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right.  Thank you.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, one-minute suspension.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Trial suspended for one minute.

At 6:18 p.m., the trial was resumed.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Trial resumes.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, we may excuse the witness at the moment, Mr. President.  I am about to move for adjournment.  But before that, there are certain important matters that we have to take up with the court.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Witness is discharged in the meantime subject to recall.

SEN. SOTTO.  Thank you, Mr. President.  On February 9, 2012, the Presiding Officer issued a subpoena ad testificandum et duces tecum to the Clerk of Court and the Deputy Clerk of Court of the Supreme Court directing them to bring the record or log book of the raffle committee showing the assignment of the FASAP case and the letters of Atty. Estelito Mendoza addressed to the Clerk of Court dated September 13, 16, 20 and 22 also in connection with the FASAP case.  On the same date, another subpoena duces tecum was also issued by the Presiding Officer directing the Clerk of Court of the Supreme Court en banc to bring various Supreme Court records in connection with the case of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in GR No. 199034, GMA TRO petition and the case of former Gentleman, Jose Miguel Arroyo in G.R. No. 199046, Mike Arroyo TRO Petition.  The subpoena were delivered and received by the Supreme Court on February 10, 2012.  Now, Mr. President, on February 15, 2012, the Clerk of the Senate, sitting as an impeachment court received a copy of a resolution of the Supreme Court date 14 February 2012, which dealt with matters which are subject of the subpoenas issued by the impeachment court.  In relation to the first subpoena ad testificandum ed duces tecum,  all items requested from items 2 to 5 were approved for release to the impeachment court except for one item on the records or logbook of the raffle committee showing the assignment of the FASAP Case.  In relation to the subpoena duces tecum, the Supreme Court directed the Clerk of Court to provide the impeachment court only with the documents they deemed not confidential, excluded in the list and deemed confidential were items 4, 5, 8, 9, 11, 12 and 15 of our subpoena.

Mr. President, to allow our colleagues time to go over the resolution of the Supreme Court dated February 14, 2012, I move that the matter be taken up in our caucus on Monday, February 20, 2012 at 11:00 o’clock in the morning.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Is there any objection? (Silence)  There being none, the resolution of the Supreme Court dated February 14, 2012 on the subpoenas issued by the impeachment court shall be considered by this court in our caucus scheduled on Monday, February 20, 2012.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, sometime at noon yesterday, February 15, 2012, our Clerk of Court received two notices of parties oral depositions and deposition duces tecum.  This morning, February 16, 2012, Chief Justice Corona, through counsel, filed a motion to disallow the oral depositions and deposition duces tecum, I move that the Presiding Officer rule on the motion.

 

THE PRESIDING OFFICER. May I know from the prosecution what is the basis of your request for a deposition because there are requirements or conditions provided in the Rules of Court as a basis for a deposition or interrogatories.

REP. TUPAS.  Your Honor, may I request that Congressman Colmenares be recognized.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Yes.

REP. COLMENARES.  Thank you, Your Honor. We considered the deposition of the two notaries public, Your Honor, only because there was an agreement or, at least, an instruction on the part of the impeachment court also that, as much as possible, hindi po pahabain ang aming mga witnesses. Ngayon po, may notaryo lang po doon sa  SPA ni Ginang Arroyo doon na sinabmit sa Supreme Court, so, at part ng preparation po namin, deposition lang po muna, kasi,  kung mayroon man, simple lang naman po ang gusto naming malaman totoo nga bang nag-notaryo si Ginang …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.   Hindi ba mas simple kung dalhin ninyo rito at tanungin sila para tanungin sila ng depensa.

REP. COLMENARES.  Actually, po …

THE PRESIDING OFFICER. Akala ko ba ang pinapa—gusto nating ibunyag lahat ng pangyayari sa madla, transparency, iyon ang palagi kong naririnig sa inyo.

REP. COLMENARES.  Tama po kayo po.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER. Eto, ‘pag pinayagan ko ito para baga may itinatago.

REP. COLMENARES.  Tama po kayo.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Kung hindi man, kung walang sakit iyong tao na gusto ninyong tanungin at pagawin ng affidavit o kaya nandito naman siya sa bansa at masu-subpoena, ay dapat humarap siya rito.  Hindi ko papayagan ito.

REP. COLMARES.    Tama, Your Honor please, if I may, Your Honor, we would like lang, Your Honor, kasi pwede naman namin siyang i-subpoena.  Ang tanong lang sa kanya simple: Anong oras ng nag-subpoena, ay sorry, anong oras nagnotaryo si Ginang Arroyo?  Ngayon, kung simple lamang po ang sagot niya, hindi na siya kailangan mag- testify po dito  para umiksi ang witness natin. Ngayon, po pwede naman naming siyang witness namin siya, pwede naman kami po ang mag-interview sa kanya, gawan ng affidavit, pero inopen pa po nga namin sa Deposition para naman ang prosekusyon, kung nandoon sila present mismo sa Depositon instead na kami lang ang nag-i-interview, at kung mag-agree na sila doon sa dine-posed ng attorney na iyon baka mag-stipulate na lang po kami.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The motion is denied.  This court wants to hear the witnesses.

REP. COLMENARES.  So, we will submit the witness, Your Honor.

SEN. SOTTO.  The prosecution wish to be recognized.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The prosecution.

REP. TUPAS.  Your Honor, in connection with that manifestation from the honourable Senator from Ilocos Norte, regarding Jorge Banal of the Third District of Quezon City.  Your Honor, he is here inside the session hall, he wishes to explain.  Because his name was mentioned by one of the witnesses, he is here to explain.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  What is the pleasure of the Senate Impeachment Court?

SEN. SOTTO.  Majority of the Members of the court think that it is too late in the day, Mr. President …  may I have a one-minute suspension, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Session is suspended.

It was 6:26 p.m.

TRIAL IS RESUMED

At 6:28 p.m., the trial was resumed.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Trial is resumed.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, Representative Banal has volunteered to appear and the majority of the Members of the court would like to give him the opportunity to explain his side on what transpired earlier, of course, as agreed upon, because of the lateness of the hour, we can restrain ourselves or refrain from asking questions, we can do that on Monday.  But, at least, give the change to a Member of Congress to explain because his name was mentioned.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  All right, Congressman Banal will please take the floor and explain.

REP. BANAL.  Maraming salamat po, Mr. Senate President.  Magandang gabi po sa inyong lahat.

Ako po si Bolet Banal, ako po ay Representative po ng Ikatlong Distrito ng Lungsod Quezon.  Nabanggit po ni Ms. Annabelle Tiongson na nagpunta po ako sa bangko nila, totoo po iyon, ako po ay nagpunta doon noong Lunes po, January 31 yata dahil iyong sumunod na araw ay birthday noong anak ko, si Kiko.

Anyway, pumunta lang po ako doon para humingi po ng tulong.  Totoo po ang sinabi niya na nagbabakasakali po ako dahil–hindi ko po siya personally kilala papel na may signature card po noon pong Lunes ng gabi.  Ako po ay araw-araw na nandidito po sa Secretariat, hindi po ako abogado, hindi po ako prosecutor pero ang tungkulin ko po sa Secretariat ay admin finance, araw-araw po akong nandodoon.  So noong gabi po na iyon, noong Lunes po pagkatapos po ng duty namin dito medyo nagkayayaan po iyong ibang mga Secretariat members, siguro mga apat po kami, nag-unwind po kami dito sa may MOA and when I got home, ang practice ko po ibinababa ko na po iyong driver ko sa EDSA kasi ang uwi niya po bandang Congress pa.  Mag-isa na lang po akong umuwi at pag parade ko po, pagpasok ko po sa may driveway po namin, meron po kasing mga slots iyong gate ko po.  Meron po doong naka-fold po siya na papel po.  Sa St. Ignatius po ako nakatira, pagitan po iyon ng White Plains at Blue Ridge.  So kinabukasan po binisita ko na nga po.  Meron pong, handwritten po iyong 700K.  Gusto ko pong i-verify po talaga.  Totoo po ito.  Hindi ko po sinabihan po si Jun Abaya ang aming impeachment manager.  Kanina po magkatabi kami roon, humihingi po ako ng paumanhin sa kanya.  Hindi ko po talaga siya sinabihan kasi ang instruction po talaga sa amin sa team, pag meron pong anything, idadaan sa impeachment manager.  Kung magko-comment ka sa media, idadaan sa spokesperson at ako po ayoko din pong magsalita dahil pos a totoo lang kaya po ako nagbe-verify ayoko pong magbigay po ng maling impormasyon doon sa mga kasama ko.  Iyon lang po talaga iyong dahilan.  So totoo po iyon.   Tinatakpan ko po noong ipinakita ko po kay Ms. Annabelle Tiongson.  Ang ipinakita ko lang po iyong—kasi po ang talagang fear ko noon baka $700 lamang po iyong…  So noon pong the next day at noong—I was hoping po na baka—bago po ako umalis pala baka hindi lang nasabi ni Ms. Annabelle na nag-iwan pa ho ako ng business card.  Nilagay ko po iyong, sinulat ko pa ho iyong cell number ko kasi po iyong business card ko office number lang po ang nakalagay.  At ako po I was hoping—pero she was—how should I put it—she was very firm but she was very polite.  Sinabi niya sa akin na talaga hindi and I didn’t also want her to do anything against her will.  Ako nagbabaka sakali lang nab aka tumulong siya sa akin kasi totoo po iyong sinabi niya.  Sinabi ko na meron din ibang tumutulong sa akin, meron din pong ganon kasi po i–share ko na rin po ngayon.  Meron din po kaming na-recib dati na taga, banda rin po sa area na iyon at meron po siyang shineyr na $300,000 na account pero sa kasamaang palad at hindi ko po siya mapilit, ang instruction po sa akin ni Jun Abaya at that time na proteksyonan siya kasi nga po natatakot po sila na mag-reveal, parang nagbigay lamang po sila  ng lead.  Ang totoo pa nga ho noon, noong mag-meet ho kami noong unang tao na iyon sa bahay pa po ng tatay ko sa St. Ignatius kasi apparently she knows my father.  And the document that she gave at that time, anonymous letter po, dinala sa Committee on Justice ng Kongreso.  So bineripay ko po iyon, ito mga weeks before pa po ito noong January 31, a week or two before.  So iyon lang po iyong konting background doon, doon sa sinabi ko na meron pong, Mr. Senate President, meron pong tumutulong  din sa amin.  Totoo po kasi iyon, iyon ang pinanggagalingan ko.  Ako naman, humihingi din ako ng paumanhin po sa mga kasama ko, wala po akong sinabihan sa kanila na meron akong ganong alam kasi nga po gusto ko munang i-verify.  Kasi po baka mali naman po iyon, photocopy lang ho kasi siya e.  So noon pong Huwebes po, noong nag ano na ho sila ng subpoena, hindi ko na ho, parang nakahinga na lang po ako ng maluwag na siguro meron na po silang inilabas na ganoon.  At maski naman po iyong mga spokesperson kahit po iyong impeachment manager, kahit po iyong lead prosecutor, kahit si Manong Rudy na idol naming po sa Kongreso wala po akong sinabihan kahit po na sino.  Wala po kaming sinabihan po.  Pasensya na po kung naka-cause po ako ng any problems.  I just wanted to help our team and in hindsight tingin ko baka nakasama pa ako doon sa, sa tingin ko lang.  Pasensya na po.  Salamat po.

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, may we invite Representative Banal to come on Monday just in case there will be questions from the members of the court.  We thank the prosecution panel for that.

May we ask the Sergeant-at-Arms to make an announcement, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  The Sergeant-at-Arms, please make an announcement.

THE SERGEANT-AT-ARMS.  Please all rise.

All persons are commanded to remain in their places until the Senate President and the Senators have left the session hall.

ADJOURNMENT OF TRIAL

SEN. SOTTO.  Mr. President, may I remind Members of the court that there will be a caucus of the court on 11:00 a.m. in the Office of the Senate President, and at this point I move to adjourn until two o’clock in the afternoon of Monday, February 20, 2012.

THE PRESIDING OFFICER.  Is there any objection?  (Silence)  This trial is hereby adjourned until 2:00 p.m. on Monday, February 20, 2012.  (Gavel)

It was 6:35 p.m.

 

 

 

 

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