DOJ reverses ruling, indicts Lim on drug raps

The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Friday reversed its earlier ruling and indicted businessman and alleged drug lord Peter Lim on the case filed by the Philippine National Police (PNP).

In a resolution, the prosecution panel, composed of Senior Assistant State Prosecutors Juan Pedro Navera and Anna Noreen Devanadera, and Prosecution lawyer Herbert Calvin Abugan, found probable cause to charge Lim with conspiracy to commit illegal drug trading.

The indictment of Lim, who underwent a separate probe at his request, came following the similar indictment of self-confessed drug lord Kerwin Espinosa, convicted drug lord Peter Co, Marcelo Adorco, Ruel Malindangan, and Lovely Impal before a Makati court.

State prosecutors also found Lim’s defense of not having the alias “Jaguar” as “immaterial”, as both Espinosa and Adorco identified him in all of their illegal drug transactions.

“Furthermore, his alibi that he could not have possibly been in Thailand during the time attested by Adorco has to yield to the positive and affirmative statements of said witness,” the DOJ statement read.

The panel reiterated that conspiracy to commit illegal drug trading is a distinct offense under the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 and that the agreement to trade in drugs is the essence of the offense.

“The drugs themselves as corpus delicti, or drug trading are not essential under Section 26 (b) of law,” it said.

The complaint, filed by the PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, was junked on Dec. 20, 2017 by the department, then led by secretary Vitaliano Aguirre, but was later reinstated. PNA