MANILA -- Senator Richard Gordon on Tuesday said that he wants a hold departure order (HDO) issued against personalities allegedly involved in the PHP6.4 billion worth of shabu shipment from China.
Among those Gordon said should be issued with an HDO are Richard Tan, the owner of Hong Fei Logistics, the warehouse where the illegal shipment was found, and Manny Li and Kenneth Dong, Chinese businessmen who worked as Tan's middlemen.
Last week, the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee cited Tan and Li in contempt. Gordon said they will remain in contempt and detained in the office of the Senate sergeant at arms indefinitely.
Almost immediately after the hearing, Dong was arrested by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI)) after doing a background check which found out that he had a rape case.
During the hearing, Dong was questioned by Senator Antonio Trillanes IV about his relationship with Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte.
Trillanes showed photos of Dong with Paolo and Sebastian Duterte, who are the two sons of President Rodrigo Duterte.
Dong, however, said they were not close and were mere "acquaintances".
Paolo Duterte's name was brought up in an earlier House committee hearing in relation to transactions in the Bureau of Customs (BOC).
Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III, in an interview, said that there was no basis to call on Paolo Duterte to attend the Senate probe despite his name being brought up thrice in hearings.
I don't think it's necessary for us to invite the Vice Mayor. (There's) no basis at all, Sotto told reporters in an interview.
The chairman (Richard Gordon) knows it's pure hearsay. This is the third time that I have heard government offices saying that there are people approaching them from a Davao Group but when you check them out, they're not even from Davao, he added.
Source: Philippine News Agency