Esperon vows to pursue perjury raps vs. Red front groups

MANILA National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon, Jr., on Thursday said he is bent on pursuing the perjury complaint he initiated against members of communist-front groups.

"I am going to pursue this case continuously," Esperon told reporters shortly after a hearing at the Quezon City Prosecutor's Office, which is conducting a preliminary investigation into the case.

"Respondents assert that they have not committed perjury because the elements of the crime are not present. Contrary to such assertion, the ultimate facts as narrated in the affidavit complaint substantially established that a crime under the Revised Penal Code has been committed," he added in his reply.

City Prosecutor Nilo PeAaflor has scheduled the next hearing on the case on October 3.

Esperon noted that the offense is committed by persons who knowingly make untruthful statements before a competent person authorized to administer an oath.

In his complaint, Esperon, also concurrent vice-chairperson of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), said respondents Cristina Palabay, Sr. Elenita Belardo, Romeo Clamor, Gabriela Krista Dalena, Editha Burgos, Jose Mari Callueng, Wilfredo Ruazol, Elisa Tita P. Lubi, Reylan B. Vergara, Sr. Maria Cupin, Joan May Salvador, and Gertrudes Ranjo-Liang all swore to a notary public that the Rural Missionaries of the Philippines (RMP) is duly-registered non-stock, non-profit organization registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

"Contrary to the verification and certification, executed by petitioners, the SEC already revoked the certificate of RMP on August 20, 2003, for its failure to submit the required General Information Sheets and Financial Statements from 1997 to 2002. The revocation took effect on September 23, 2003," Esperon said. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency