MANILA, Aug. 5 (PNA) — Deputy Ombudsman for Visayas Paul Elmer Clemente has indicted former Barangay Anopog, Pinamungajan, Cebu Chair Elmerito Panlaan for malversation of public property for not returning a 0.9-mm caliber pistol worth Php40,175 issued to him in 2003.
During the investigation, it was found that when the new municipal mayor of Pinamungajan assumed office in 2013, he issued a memorandum order requiring the municipal treasurer to account for and turn over all service vehicles and firearms owned by the municipal government.
Despite notice and repeated demands, Panlaan did not return the firearm but instead submitted an affidavit stating that he no longer had custody of it since he already surrendered the same to the chief of police in 2006.
In dismissing the bare claim of respondent, the Ombudsman said that the failure of Panlaan to return accountable property was prima facie evidence that he has appropriated the missing firearm for personal use.
The Ombudsman resolution said that Panlaan failed to overcome the prima facie evidence of guilt when he was unable to produce, let alone sufficiently explain who had custody of the missing property. (PNA)