Ex-Dinagat mayor convicted of three counts of perjury

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    FORMER Dinagat municipal mayor Gwendolyn Ecleo is facing three years of imprisonment after she was convicted on three counts of perjury by the Sandiganbayan Fourth Division.

    The cases filed by the Office of the Ombudsman two years ago alleged that Ecleo did not make a full disclosure of all properties she owned in her Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth for the years 2006, 2007 and 2010.

    Specifically covered by the indictment were five Honda Bravo motorcycles all purchased in 2006 and registered in her name but were left out in her SALNs.

    Even if the accused disavowed knowledge of the said motorcycles, the court said the prosecution was able to prove “willful and deliberate assertion of falsehood” on her part, noting that all five vehicles were registered from 2006 to 2011 in her name.

    Ecleo claimed it was her estranged husband Baltazar Robert Durano who actually bought the motorcycles from Eduhome Enterprises Inc. in Surigao City in 2006 but it was only in May 2017 that she obtained a certification from the seller to support her claim.

    Under questioning by members of the court, the owner of Eduhome admitted that Ecleo requested him to issue the certification and to include a paragraph identifying Durano as the buyer.

    “To the mind of the Court, the inclusion of Durano as the buyer …is a mere afterthought on the part of Ecleo so she can feign ignorance of the ownership,” the Sandiganbayan said.