Manila Airport accountant convicted over P3.4-M grease money

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DAVAO CITY, Philippines — A senior accountant of the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) was convicted for receiving total of P3,492,400.00 from Equine Power Trading Company (EPTC), a contractor with several projects with the MIAA.

Presiding Judge Rowena Nieves Tan of Branch 118 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Pasay City, convicted Leilani Pagdanganan, Senior Accountant B of the MIAA and sentenced her to nine years and one day to 12 years of imprisonment, with perpetual disqualification from holding public office.

The court found Pagdanganan to have received a total of P3,492,400.00

During the trial, Ombudsman prosecutors presented withdrawal slips signed by Pagdanganan to prove that she received P996,400.00 on 28 December 2006 and P400,000.00 on 04 April 2007, withdrawn from the savings account of EPTC maintained at the Parañaque Branch of Land Bank of the Philippines.

The prosecution also presented a voucher from EPTC dated 22 January 2007 for the amount of P2,096,000.00 signed by her as recipient.

“The court finds the circumstantial evidence as forming an unbroken chain leading to one fair and reasonable conclusion that accused Pagdanganan, to the exclusion of all others, is guilty of soliciting and accepting moneys from EPTC, with whom the office, the MIAA, had existing projects to fund and which accused Pagdanganan, as a public employee, is prohibited by law from having any financial interest in,” explained the RTC Decision.

The court added that Pagdanganan “never refuted the fact that she received moneys from Equine with whom her office, the MIAA, had several on-going projects being financed by it. Neither did she present any evidence to show that she received the same for a lawful purpose.”-Jiann A. Padillo/Newsline.ph

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