Ex-BuCor’s Ragos attends De Lima hearing

Although he was present at yesterday’s hearing of detained former senator Leila de Lima, former Bureau of Corrections officer-in-charge Rafael Ragos was not able to testify due to a pending motion of the prosecution.

Michael Christipher de Castro, Ragos’ counsel, said the court decided to wait for the prosecution’s comments regarding his client, who was worried about his security.

On behalf of Ragos, De Castro said he has filed with the Muntinlupa court a motion to suppress and expunge all his affidavits, which, he said, were made without an “independent and competent counsel.”

In filing for the motion to suppress and expunge all his affidavits, Ragos does not need to affirm his new affidavit recanting his allegations.

“The truth is, when we filed the motion to suppress and expunge the affidavits today, Ragos does not need to affirm, because all the affidavits he made should not be evidence, because under our Constitution, when you or anyone of us signs a confession without any lawyer helping you — and that lawyer should be independent and competent — they can be expunged,” he said.

De Castro said they believe the truth will come out eventually, despite a slight delay in yesterday’s hearing.

In his 30 April affidavit, Ragos stated, “All of my allegations to the contrary in my affidavits and House and court testimonies are all fiction, false, and fabricated.”

He recanted all his statements against the lawmaker, claiming he did not give P10 million to the senator in 2012 that allegedly came from the drug trade at the New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa.

The former BuCor official said he was forced to execute the affidavits and deliver them to the House and the court as testimonies against Sec. De Lima and Ronnie Dayan due to threats of being detained for the crime of engaging in the illegal drug trade, which he did not commit.

Ragos is the government witness in Case 17-165, charging De Lima and her former aide, Dayan, of conspiracy to commit illegal drug trading during her time as Justice secretary.

Three cases have been filed in February 2017 by the Department of Justice against De Lima for illegal drug trading in Muntinlupa courts.

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