Sandiganbayan orders arrest of Sen. JV Ejercito, 5 others

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — The Sandiganbayan Fifth Division ordered on Wednesday (April 6) the arrest of Sen. Joseph Victor "JV" Ejercito and five others in relation to an alleged anomalous purchase of P2.1 million-worth of high-powered firearms in 2008.

The purchase allegedly occurred during Ejercito's term as mayor of San Juan City.

Warrants of arrest were also issued against other former San Juan City officials namely former City Administrator Ranulfo Barte Dacalos, City Treasurer Rosalinda Estrella Marasigan, City Attorney Romualdo Corpuz Delos Santos, City Budget officer Lorenza Catalan Ching, and City Engineer Danilo Salcedo Mercado.

Related: JV Ejercito, 19 others charged for ‘anomalous’ firearms purchase

The bail was pegged at P30,000 per accused.

According to Office of the Ombudsman, Ejercito conspired with other city officials in February 2008 to purchase the firearms using the city’s calamity fund as “investment for disaster preparedness.”

The Ombudsman on March 30 filed graft and technical malversation cases against Ejercito, saying that the firearms purchase was done with haste and not among the items needed for disaster relief and mitigation.