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Vice Mayor Diaz cleared over charges of failure to liquidate P4.6 million due to Ombudsman delay

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The Office of the Ombudsman has been caught sleeping on the job again as the Sandiganbayan First Division dismissed due to inordinate delay the charges filed against Tagana-an, Surigao del Norte Vice Mayor Cesar Diaz.

Diaz had been accused of allegedly failing to liquidate P4.6 million in cash advances from 2006 to 2012 when he was still mayor.

“Wherefore, in view of the violation of the constitutional right of accused Diaz to the speedy disposition of the cases against him, the instant cases are hereby dismissed,” read the First Division decision which dismissed the 11 counts of failure to render accounts filed against Diaz.

The First Division observed that “there are periods when there is no movement in the preliminary investigation process.”

The anti-graft court noted that Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales approved on October 10, 2014 the resolution which ordered the indictment of Diaz before the Sandiganbayan.

However, the court said the cases were only filed before the Sandiganbayan on January 16, 2017.

“Moreover, prosecution was not able to satisfactorily explain the reason why it took more than a year for the approval of the denial of Diaz’s motion for reconsideration,” the court said.

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