MANILA, 16Aug2013 (PNA) – Malacañang has appealed to the public to help in the arrest of fugitive businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles who is facing illegal detention charges filed by the camp of whistleblower Benhur Luy.
At a media briefing, Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte echoed the call of Justice Secretary Leila de Lima who urged a citizen’s arrest against Napoles.
“The warrant has been given to authorities. Normally, we’re reluctant to do that [citizen’s arrest] but if you see her, you can give information to authorities. If you have information, the NBI, the PNP and the DOJ would be glad to hear from you,” Valte said.
Napoles and his brother Reynald Luy Lim went into hiding even before authorities could issue the warrant for their arrest.
“Mas marami tayong citizens kesa sa groups pursuing her. It would help greatly if information is given that would lead tracker teams to her,” Valte said.
Napoles has been accused of being the brains behind the P10 billion “pork barrel” scam where several lawmakers allegedly handed their Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) to ghost projects of bogus non-government organizations owned by Napoles.
Valte said it was up to the justice department if they would put a bounty on Napoles’ arrest.
“We’ve no problem with it. We’d leave that to the DOJ if a bounty is necessary to arrest her,” she said.
Asked if Napoles’ move to go into hiding is a sign of guilt, Valte said, “Flight as a sign of guilt is established in jurisprudence. As the President always say, if you’ve nothing to hide, then you’ve nothing to fear.” (PNA)