SC acquits ex-Gamu mayor of graft

PHILSTAR

THE PHILIPPINE Supreme Court (SC) has cleared former Gamu, Isabela Mayor Fernando O. Gumicad of graft over the local government’s purchase of fuel products from his wife’s gasoline station.

In a 39-page resolution made public recently, the High Court said prosecutors had failed to prove that the state was disadvantaged by the purchase of petroleum products from FOC Petron, owned and operated by the ex-mayor’s wife Marilou.

It noted that Gamu only had two gasoline stations and FOC Petron was the only available major oil player in town.

“The prosecution failed to establish that the direct purchase of petroleum products from FOC Petron was deliberately and fraudulently orchestrated to deceive the government and obtain an undue personal gain or benefit,” according to the resolution written by Senior Associate Justice Marvic M.V.F Leonen.

The tribunal reversed the Sandiganbayan’s conviction of Mr. Gumicad in 2019 for 36 counts of graft for giving “unwarranted benefit, advantage or preference to FOC Petron.” — Chloe Mari A. Hufana