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Graft pre-trial of ex-PNP chief Alan Purisima reset to June
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Former Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Alan Purisima

Former Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Alan Purisima

MANILA, Apr 18 (Mabuhay) – The Sandiganbayan has reset the graft pre-trial of former Philippine National Police chief Alan Purisima in connection with the alleged anomalous courier service deal that the PNP entered into in 2011.

The pre-trial, scheduled on Tuesday, was moved to June 6 to allow both the prosecution and defense panels to complete the preliminary conference for the case.

The preliminary conference is set on May 9.

The prosecution said they will also submit a supplemental pre-trial brief for the case.

Purisima was charged with graft for a supposedly anomalous contract that the PNP entered into in 2011 with the courier service company Werfast Documentary Agency, Inc. for the delivery of firearms licenses of applicants.

Based on the Information of the case, the contract was awarded to Werfast without public bidding and despite the company’s supposed lack of track record and qualifications as a courier service firm.

The Ombudsman said Werfast was not yet registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission when the contract was signed in May 2011.

It also said that the company was not authorized by the Department of Transportation and Communications to offer courier delivery service.

Purisima has pleaded not guilty to the charge. (MNS)

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Kyla, Rich Alvarez mark 6th wedding anniversary
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Kyla (MNS photo)

Kyla (MNS photo)

Singer Kyla took to Instagram to share her message for husband, former PBA star and now Mahindra assistant coach Rich Alvarez, as they mark their sixth wedding anniversary.

In her personal account on Monday, Kyla posted a photo of them as she recalled their “ups and downs” and “cries and smiles.”

“Remember that I’ll always choose to be with you, and not be mad at you. Remember that I love you. And that I will never EVER let anyone take that away,” she wrote.

“You will always be my favorite person in the world! Happy 6th my love! 12 years, all together, of knowing you and being crazy with you,” the singer added.

Kyla and Alvarez had a secret civil wedding months before they had their church wedding in November 2011. The celebrity couple dated for seven years before deciding to tie the knot.

In 2013, Kyla gave birth to their son Toby. (MNS)

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Poe urges creation of transport safety board anew after Nueva Ecija bus crash
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Sen. Grace Poe delivers her sponsorship speech on the FOI Act: Senator Grace Poe delivers her sponsorship speech on the proposed Freedom of Information (FOI) Act on Wednesday (Oct. 19, 2016) at the Plenary Hall of the Senate Building in Pasay City. (PNA photo by Avito C. Dalan)

Sen. Grace Poe delivers her sponsorship speech on the FOI Act: Senator Grace Poe delivers her sponsorship speech on the proposed Freedom of Information (FOI) Act on Wednesday (Oct. 19, 2016) at the Plenary Hall of the Senate Building in Pasay City. (PNA photo by Avito C. Dalan)

MANILA, Apr 19 (Mabuhay) – Senator Grace Poe on Wednesday called anew for the creation of a National Transport Safety Board following the Nueva Ecija bus accident that killed at least 32 people.

In a statement, Poe also said the necessary assistance should be extended by authorities and the bus company to the victims and their relatives.

“Kailangan ding siguraduhin ang masusing imbestigasyon upang mapanagot ang maysala at makamit ng mga biktima ang hustisya,” Poe said.

“Muling pinaiigting ng pangyayaring ito ang pangangailangan natin sa isang National Transport Safety Board na magsasagawa ng independiyenteng imbestigasyon sa mga aksidente at magbuo ng mga polisiya at programa para maiwasan ang kapahamakan sa daan,” she added.

The proposed National Transportation Safety Board aims to create an independent and non-regulatory panel that will oversee and coordinate efforts among various agencies involved in overall management of land, air, maritime and railway transportation.

The functions of the NTSB include conducting independent accident investigations; supporting safety programs based on continuing reviews of causes of unfortunate incidents; and assessing the operating practices and regulations of transportation-oriented government agencies.

Overloading could have caused the ill-fated LeoMaric minibus to lose control and fall into a deep ravine in Carranglan, Nueva Ecija, a local disaster management official said Tuesday.

“According po doon sa driver namin na dating driver ng bus, itong size ng bus na ‘to around 50 po ‘yung karga… 45-50. Pero sa account na 69 po overloaded na po,” said Kennedy Baluyan, an officer of the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council in Sta. Fe town.

The incident happened at past 11 a.m. in Barangay Capintalan.

The minibus, bound for Candon, Ilocos Sur, fell into an 80- to 100-foot ravine.(MNS)

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Strong peso due to Duterte’s ‘decisive’ pursuit of peace and order
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An employee counts Philippine pesos inside a money changer in Manila September 19, 2013. A Philippine official said a weaker peso will benefit Philippine exporters by making their products less expensive and thus more competitive in the global market.

An employee counts Philippine pesos inside a money changer in Manila September 19, 2013. A Philippine official said a weaker peso will benefit Philippine exporters by making their products less expensive and thus more competitive in the global market.

MANILA, April 18 (PNA) – Malacañang on Tuesday said that President Rodrigo Duterte’s ‘decisive leadership’ in pursuing peace and order has resulted to healthy economic growth as indicated by the sustained strength of the Philippine peso.

“The sustained strength of the Philippine peso mirrors the high business and investor confidence in the decisive leadership of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte,” Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said in a statement.

“Under the PRRD administration, it is a doctrine that an economy thrives when there is peace and order. Pursuing that tack has resulted in robust economic growth,” he said.

The Palace official said the administration hopes to sustain the economic momentum in order to bring Filipinos closer to Duterte’s promise of a comfortable life.

“To sustain it we are launching the biggest infrastructure program in Philippine history. Big-ticket projects such as roads and bridges, mass urban transport system, alternative green city solutions are among key investments intended to move the country closer to the promise of a comfortable life for all,” he said.

“The Philippine economic future indeed looks very promising and we enjoin our people to continuously support the administration as we together build a nation worthy of all Filipinos,” Abella said.

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Pangilinan: Report on ‘state-sponsored’ EJKs backs Lascañas’ death squad claim
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Pangilinan in 2015(Wikipedia)

Pangilinan in 2015(Wikipedia)

MANILA, Apr 19 (Mabuhay) – A report on alleged “state-sponsored extrajudicial killings” authored by a retired police intelligence officer supports the claim of self-confessed hitman Arturo Lascañas about the so-called Davao Death Squad (DDS), Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan said Wednesday.

“That corroborates the earlier statement made by Lascañas when he said that the DDS received cash payments for each killing made,” Pangilinan, president of the Liberal Party, said in a text message when asked to comment on the report by Reuters news service.

Lascañas, a retired cop, earlier claimed that President Rodrigo Duterte, during his term as Davao City mayor, paid up to P100,000 per drug suspect killed by police officers.

Testifying in a Senate inquiry last month, Lascañas said he was involved in the killing of at least 200 people, including radio broadcaster Jun Pala, upon the orders of Duterte.

He said members of the DDS, in which he was a “major player,” were motivated to kill drug suspects because of the “reward system” instituted by Duterte.

According to two senior officers interviewed by Reuters, police officers have received payments for killing drug suspects.

A 26-page report supposedly authored by one of the officers, titled “The State-Sponsored Extrajudicial Killings in the Philippines,” alleged that the “reward” for drug killings range from P20,000 for a “street level pusher and user,” to P50,000 for a member of the barangay council, P1 million for “distributors, retailers and wholesalers” and P5 million for “drug lords.”

The document has been shared with leaders of the Catholic Church, and the Commission on Human Rights, Reuters said.

“Police officers kill for money, said the commander, but also out of fear: Even the police are afraid of being included on a “watch list” of drug suspects drawn up by police and local officials,” the report noted.

Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III deferred comment on the issue, saying he first needs to read the report.

Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III downplayed the report.

“I give small weight basta international news agency about the Philippines,” Sotto said in a text message.

Senator Panfilo Lacson, chairman of the Senate public order committee which conducted an inquiry into Lascañas’ allegations against Duterte, earlier said that the retired cop’s claims are “clearly meant to destabilize” the Duterte administration. (MNS)

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A major milestone in the construction of the $285 million Pechanga Resort & Casino expansion was reached today. Dozens of construction members, elected officials, dignitaries, Pechanga Tribal members and Pechanga Team Members gathered to watch the topping out of the Tribe’s massive addition that will make their resort/casino the largest on the West Coast. The mammoth expansion is now more than halfway complete.

This topping out included crews 14 stories up pouring the last 710 tons of concrete into the upper framing of the new hotel tower that will house 568 rooms and suites. A giant, concrete-filled bucket the size of a mid-size car was hoisted via crane to the top of the south hotel wing and its contents poured into the structure. A small, sacred oak tree also hitched a ride onto the top of building with the bucket, and was placed atop the tower as a symbol of strength and perseverance. The ceremonial tree will be planted on the resort grounds at the expansion’s completion.

“Countless people, as well as more than 2,500 construction trades workers, have labored tirelessly to keep construction on schedule allowing us to celebrate today. This is the very spot new and existing visitors to Temecula and Pechanga will have their first impressions of our new resort come December. On this important day, we can look confidently toward our Tribe’s and the Temecula Valley’s future,” said Edith Atwood, President of the Pechanga Development Corporation.

The project put more than 2,500 regional construction tradesmen and women to work for the two-year build. Materials used in construction have been largely sourced from Southern California. Builders have poured 81,000 tons of concrete to erect the Pechanga resort expansion’s new hotel wing. More than 2,174 tons of reinforcing steel went into the structure, The base of the intersecting hotel towers is 70-feet wide and 13-feet deep with a large tunnel system allowing the more than 4,500 Pechanga Team Members to move easily through the property for the most efficient guest service. The hotel structure ascends 13 stories on the south and nine stories on the north.

When the entire expansion project is complete in December 2017, Pechanga Resort & Casino will offer a full-scale destination experience to visitors coming from California and beyond.

Snapshot of Pechanga When Expansion is Complete:

* Casino Square Footage: 200,000

* Event/Meeting/Convention square footage: 100,000 (indoor) 174,500 (outdoor)



* Number of Hotel Rooms: 1,090

* Number of Restaurants: 13

* Number of Pools & Spas: 13

* Number of Employees: 4,560

* Other Amenities: 2-level luxury Spa, Fitness Center, Championship 18-hole Golf Course, Concert Theater, Nightlife, Green Roof

The building was designed by Delawie architects, the original designers of Pechanga Resort & Casino when it was built in 2002. Lifescapes International is building the four-acre pool complex. Tutor Perini was selected as the expansion builder. CLEO Design is the lead for interior aesthetics.

About Pechanga Resort & Casino

Pechanga Resort & Casino offers one of the largest and most expansive resort/casino experiences anywhere in the United States. Voted the Number One casino in America by readers of USA TODAY and rated a Four Diamond property by AAA since 2002, Pechanga Resort & Casino provides an unparalleled getaway. Offering more than 3,400 of the hottest slots, table games, world-class entertainment, 517 hotel rooms, dining, spa and championship golf at Journey at Pechanga, Pechanga Resort & Casino features a destination that meets and exceeds the needs of its guests and the community. Pechanga Resort & Casino is owned and operated by the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians. For more information, call toll free 1-888-PECHANGA or visit? Follow Pechanga Resort & Casino on Facebook <> and on Twitter @PechangaCasino <>. Pechanga Resort & Casino is open 24-hours. Guests must be 21 and older to enter the casino.

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De Lima: SolGen resorting to ‘basest of technicalities’, not arguments
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  Senator Leila de Lima ,President Benigno Aquino III , New Bilid Prison, Justice Secretary, Vitaliano Aguirre II , Liberal Party

Senator Leila De Lima (MNS Photo)

MANILA, Mar 21 (Mabuhay) –

“Desperate.” This is how Senator Leila de Lima described the move of the Solicitor General seeking the dismissal of the senator’s petition to nullify her arrest.

Solicitor General Jose Calida told the Supreme Court in a manifestation that De Lima supposedly falsified the notarization of her pleading.

The OSG alleged that one Atty. Maria Cecille T. Tresvelles-Cabalo administered the oath on De Lima on February 24, 2017, the day De Lima was arrested upon the order of Branch 204 Presiding Judge Juanita Guerrero. The OSG explained that Cabalo could have only administered De Lima’s oath at PNP Custodial Center in Camp Crame, Quezon City since the former’s commission as notary public is for Quezon City.

The OSG also noted that Cabalo is a sorority sister of De Lima at San Beda College of Law’s Lambda Rho Sigma, which was co-founded by De Lima

In a press release sent by her office on Monday, De Lima pointed out that the Office of the Solicitor General “is scraping the bottom of the barrel for whatever argument is left to support her continued illegal detention” with its repeated attempts to “resort to the basest of technicalities, and in lieu of substantial arguments against the merits of her Supreme Court petition.”

“The senator said that the OSG attack is obviously borne out of desperation,” it added.

In the same press release, De Lima maintained that Calida’s allegation “has no factual basis.”

De Lima, according to the statement, met with the notary public at Camp Crame to notarize the petition that she signed.


The detained senator maintained that contrary to the OSG’s claim, the notary public was in Camp Crame when she was brought there.


De Lima was arrested last month over her alleged involvement in the New Bilibid Prison illegal drug trade. She is currently at the Custodial Center inside the police headquarters. (MNS)

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