Senate orders arrest of ex-Comelec chairman Bautista

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DAVAO CITY, Philippines — The Senate has ordered the arrest of former Commission on Elections Chairman Andres Bautista for repeatedly  ignoring their  invitation to attend the investigation on his alleged unexplained wealth.

Senator Francis Escudero, chair of the committee on banks, financial institutions and currencies, said  the warrant would be forwarded to Bautista’s residence and other addresses.

Escudero said Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel and Senate Sergeant-at-Arms (OSAA) Jose Balajadia had already signed the warrant last Wednesday, February 21.

“The OSAA (Senate’s Office of the Sergeant-at-Arms) will try to serve it (arrest warrant) by coordinating with various law enforcement agencies including the Bureau of Immigration and wait for it to be returned, served, or unserved and will submit a corresponding report to the committee,” Escudero said.

Bautista has been cited for contempt.

Bautista has earlier claimed he was out of the country and he did not received any invitation to appear before the Senate inquiry.

It was Bautista’s wife, Patricia, who first accused him of allegedly amassing nearly P1-billion worth of unexplained wealth.

Patricia also accused his estranged husband of owning more than 30 bank accounts with the Luzon Development Bank’s (LDB) amounting to P329 million.-Editha Z. Caduaya/Newsline.ph

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