Osmeña in payroll of drug lords, says Aguirre
DUMAGUETE CITY - Still smarting from recent controversies, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II may find himself in the middle of another storm after he claimed on Monday that a witness had linked Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña to the narcotics trade.
Aguirre laughed at Osmeña’s threat to file a disbarment case against him for allegedly interfering in the tax evasion complaint which the city government had brought against retail giant SM Group and its banking arm, BDO Unibank, in Cebu.
“That’s nothing. He should just file it instead of issuing threats,” Aguirre told reporters.
“I am also going to file (a case against him),” he said. “I did not want to disclose it yet, but we already have an affidavit. A witness said he (Osmeña) was under the payroll of drug lords.”
He said Reynaldo “Jumbo” Diaz executed an affidavit on Nov. 23, 2016, claiming Osmeña got P2 million in 2013 and P5 million in 2016 from suspected drug lord Jeffrey “Jaguar” Diaz.
Others identified by Diaz as Jaguar’s protectors were retired Police Chief Supt. Vicente Loot and four other police officers.
Osmeña scoffed at Aguirre’s claim on Monday, but said he was willing to face investigation and undergo a lie detector test.
“Ok. Let’s say it’s true (that I’m a drug lord protector), does it mean he’s not guilty (of participating in these cases)?” he said, referring to the dismissal of drug trafficking charges against Cebu businessman Peter Lim, as well as the charges against Lim’s nephew, David Lim Jr., who was accused of shooting a nurse in a road rage incident in Cebu City last year.
‘He is a fool’
“Is that the way you’re going to defend yourself? ‘I’m innocent because Mayor Osmeña is a drug protector.’ Yabag kaayu siya oy (He is a fool). Don’t mislead the public,” Osmeña added.
Aguirre said Osmeña may be held liable for the “protection of drug lords” in connivance with some police officials.
“I’m having it reviewed now by the NBI (National Bureau of Investigation) and see if there could be some additional evidence (against Osmeña),” he added.
Aguirre claimed Diaz had been under the Witness Protection Program of the Department of Justice (DOJ) for over a year now.
Osmeña said he didn’t mind being investigated.
“They have been investigating me. I’m the most investigated mayor here… Go ahead… I’m willing (to be placed in a lie detector test) provided it’s not done by the NBI. With all due respect to the NBI, I don’t trust the NBI since it is under the DOJ,” he said. (By: Marlon Ramos, Morexette Eram)