February 16, 2023 @ 8:42 AM 1 month ago

PUBLIC Attorney’s Office chief Persida Rueda-Acosta has slammed former Bureau of Correction acting chief Rafael Ragos for claiming that he was forced by her and its lawyers to make false allegations against detained ex-senator Leila de Lima.

Acosta reacted to the news report that circulated online through a twitter account by one Mike Navallo saying Ragos in a court hearing last February 10 in Muntinlupa City testified that she was among those who pressured him to testify against the former senator.

She told the ‘Good Riddance’ that it was false and misleading.

“Mr. Ragos never made such a statement against me when he was presented in court last February 10 and previously in other hearings as a witness of one of the cases filed against former Sen. De Lima,” the chief public attorney said.

De Lima is currently facing drug charges before the Muntinlupa City Regional Trial Court over her alleged involvement in the proliferation in the narcotics trade at the New Bilibid.

“Such false claim, which is not based on the official records of the case, is but a vain and desperate attempt to disparage the reputation of the PAO and to muddle the issues involved in the subject criminal cases,” said the PAO chief as she appealed to everyone to prevent any further spread of the misinformation.

Moreover, she said Ragos’ accusations that lawyers Rigel Salvador and Demiteer Huerta had pressured him to make an affidavit and “put words into his mouth” are merely fabricated.

“They are figment of Mr. Ragos’ imagination geared towards making his recantation appear to be convincing and credible,” she said.

The PAO explained that the participation of the two public attorneys in the execution of Ragos’ two affidavits dated September 5, 2016 and September 26, 2016 was limited to merely reducing his statements verbatim in writing and administering his oath, after confirming the truthfulness and veracity of his allegations against the former senator.

“Mr. Ragos should know better that public attorneys are neither in a position of power nor capable of exerting pressure on him, as seasoned second highest-ranking official of the National Bureau of Investigation with vast experience in criminal investigation,” the PAO added.