Imelda Marcos given 42 years in jail for corruption

Sergio Conner
November 9, 2018

On Friday, Associate Justice Rafael Lagos of the Sandiganbayan's Fifth Division, sentenced the wife of former President Ferdinand Marcos to imprisonment from six years and one month, up to 11 years for each count, for violating Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act when she transferred around $200 million to seven Swiss foundations during her term as a member of the defunct Batasang Pambansa and as then Minister of Human Settlements.

"He is presently studying the decision and has advised us that he intends to file a Motion for Reconsideration", Marcos said in a statement, issued by the office of her daughter Imee.

However, it was unlikely 89-year-old Marcos would spend much time behind bars as she is allowed to appeal the ruling and can remain free on bail as long as the conviction is not final.

Marcos, who is now a member of the House of Representatives, is running for a governor post in next year's general election. Imelda Marcos is now a congresswoman.

Rosales said the decision was a huge setback to efforts by the Marcos family to revise history by denying numerous atrocities under the dictatorship, and urged Filipinos to fight all threats against democracy and civil liberties.

The charges, filed in the 1990s, stem from companies set up by the family in Switzerland prior to her husband's ouster in 1986, CNN Philippines says. But his heirs later returned to Manila and have since staged a political comeback.

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Government prosecutor Ryan Quilala told reporters that Marcos and her husband opened and managed Swiss foundations in violation of the Philippine Constitution, using aliases in a bid to hide stolen funds. They have denied any wrongdoing and have successfully fought many other corruption cases.

Marcos critics rejoiced at the news of the conviction, which came almost three decades after the case was filed in 1991.

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President Rodrigo Duterte enjoys good ties with the Marcos family and has often praised the late strongman.

Akbayan Representative Tom Villarin said the guilty verdict handed down to Marcos "rejects" the clan's attempt to revise the history of the Martial Law years, which was marred by killings, torture, disappearances, media oppression, and corruption that has left the Philippine economy reeling to this day.

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