Prosecutors yesterday filed charges of plunder, multiple counts of misuse of public funds and graft against former Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) chairman Efraim Genuino, Manila sources close to Filipino gambling news reported.
PAGCOR is a government-controlled agency, with the task of regulating the land and online casinos in Philippines.
The present PAGCOR leadership lodged several criminal suits against Genuino. State prosecutors suggested Genuino and other high-ranking PAGCOR officials and some private individuals allegedly pocketing at least PHP 50 million.
Pocketing money from PAGCOR is a serious offense, as
Philippine gambling laws
require the corporation to transfer at least half its annual gross revenue to the government.
The charges are connected to his alleged diversion of rice donation and funds to Batang Iwas Droga (BIDA) Foundation to help his daughter’s election campaign.
In a separate case, there was also probable cause to warrant Genuino’s indictment for graft and malversation for diverting part of 300 metric tons of rice to ensure the electoral victory of his son in the 2010 election.
The case is now being forwarded to the Ombudsman’s Office for final disposition.
Also, Genuino allegedly secured the donation of Thai rice from Aruze Corporation, one of the proponents for PAGCOR’s Entertainment City Project.
It was discovered that of 10,000 sacks of donated rice 3,500 were “withdrawn, delivered and ended up at the Pagcor warehouse in Imus, Cavite.” The original sacks were replaced with an inferior variety of rice by “virtue of a barter agreement entered into by PAGCOR with a private rice mill.”
Genuino was also tagged in the use of PAGCOR money in the production of the film “Baler” in 2008.
The authorities earlier issued a hold departure order against the Genuino family and their co-respondents to prevent them from leaving the country.