Ex-general faces criminal raps over P1.2M loan

By Tetch Torres
Last updated 06:22pm (Mla time) 07/11/2007

MANILA, Philippines — Criminal charges have been ordered filed by the Ombudsman against a retired Air Force general who failed to pay a P1.2-million loan from a private debtor.


Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez approved the recommendation of the Office of the Ombudsman for the Military and Other Law Enforcement Offices (OMB-MOLEO) to file estafa charges under Article 315 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) against retired brigadier general Prospero Ocampo, former commander of the 205th Tactical Wing stationed in Villamor Air Base, Pasay City.


The case will be filed before the Sandiganbayan anti-graft court. Bail of P60,000 has been recommended for Ocampo’s temporary liberty.


The case stemmed from a complaint filed by Eva Barzaga, owner and general manager of E.S. Barzaga General Merchandise and General Construction, a duly licensed and accredited government supplier and construction contractor since 1989.


Barzaga alleged that in 2003 she advanced P1.2 million in cash to Ocampo, for his office and a number of his men detained in Cebu.


She said Ocampo promised her payment made through purchase orders released to his command for Air Force projects.


However, she said Ocampo failed to pay the debt and she later verified that the money was never used for his office.


Ocampo denied the allegation saying the amount was a personal loan extended by Barzaga to his wife Evelyn.


But the OMB-MOLEO said that this was a “bare denial which is very easy to fabricate and concoct,” especially since Ocampo’s wife never executed a sworn statement to support his claim.


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