12 November 2009

The Department of Justice has recommended the indictment for syndicated estafa against Legacy Group of Companies owner Celso G. Delos Angeles, Jr. and twelve (12) officers who drained investors’ money in the estimated amount of Php 830 million pesos.

The resolution submitted by DOJ panel headed by SSP Emilie delos Santos included the following respondents liable for syndicated estafa under P.D. 1689 in relation to Art. 315 par. 2(a) of the RPC: Celso delos Angeles, Jr., Christine Anenor Cruz-Limpin, Namnama Pasetes- Santos, Carolina G. Hinola, Alexis S. Petralba, Roy Hilario, Bruce Rafanan, Virgilio A. Odejar, Arnel Sulquiano, Cresencio G. Wagas, Jr., Edgar U. Cando, Rolando Labrador and Alfredo Novo. Charges against Norman H. Tiongson, Zacarias Carticiano, Carmencita G. Cedo, Candy Buenaventura and Raniel Roque were dismissed for lack of probable cause.

The resolution stated “it can hardly be denied that the respondents’ action or inaction amounted to deceit and damage essential in the prosecution for the crime of estafa.” “It is indisputable that the Rural Bank of Dolefil Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Cooperative, Inc. (DARBCI) failed to return the investments of the investors/depositors, hence it is undeniable that they suffered damage in the amount of their unrecouped investments,” it said.

During the investigation, the panel found out that the respondents deceived their depositors and the general public through its vaunted “special innovative” bank products that guaranteed excessive huge profits, i.e., the double your money program in three years conversion to three-year pension buy-back program, the five-year deposit program and the six-year hybrid program.

Funds were solicited from the public through their deceitful schemes created by fraudulent banking programs to make it appear that they were engaged in legitimate banking activities, i.e., extending motorcycle loans and investment loans, which were merely designed to cover up the misappropriation of their clients money as well as the general public.

The complaint was filed by Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas against Celso delos Angeles, Jr. as chairman of Legacy Group of Companies which include as part of its banking group, Rural Bank of DARBCI (Dolefil Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Cooperative, Inc.), formerly known a Rural Bank of Maitum (South Cotabato) Inc. and several other banking firms.

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