2 Lanao politicians among signatories from checks recovered from Maute?

Early morning today, the social media has been abuzz with the news that a huge cache of money were recovered from a house used by Maute militants as a machine gun’s nest.

The Philippine Marines recovered the money in an abandoned house located near Mapandi bridge where an intense battle between militants and the government troops fighting for control occurred days ago.

Several mainstream media outlets reported that the recovered cash amounted to ₱52 million while the checks amounted to ₱27 million.

Meanwhile, two former Mayors from Lanao del Sur has been named as signatories of the checks recovered from the Maute militants.

A reliable informant of the news website Davao Breaking News has identified the Lanao politicians but they refused to divulge their identities pending investigation of the authorities. One of the politicians is already dead as per report of Davao Breaking News.

According to Section 4 REPUBLIC ACT NO. 10168 of June 20, 2012 also known as “The Terrorism Financing Prevention and Suppression Act of 2012”:

Any person who, directly or indirectly, willfully and without lawful excuse, possesses, provides, collects or uses property or funds or makes available property, funds or financial service or other related services, by any means, with the unlawful and willful intention that they should be used or with the knowledge that they are to be used, in full or in part: (a) to carry out or facilitate the commission of any terrorist act; (b) by a terrorist organization, association or group; or (c) by an individual terrorist, shall be guilty of the crime of financing of terrorism and shall suffer the penalty of reclusion temporal in its maximum period to reclusion perpetua and a fine of not less than Five hundred thousand pesos (Php500,000.00) nor more than One million pesos (Php1,000,000.00).

Any person who organizes or directs others to commit financing of terrorism under the immediately preceding paragraph shall likewise be guilty of an offense and shall suffer the same penalty as herein prescribed.

For purposes of this Act, knowledge or intent may be established by direct evidence or inferred from the attendant circumstances.

For an act to constitute a crime under this Act, it shall not be necessary that the funds were actually used to carry out a crime referred to in Section 3(j). [LawPhil]

On one hand, some netizens doubt the explosive exposé. Former Comelec Commissioner Gregrorio Larrazabal thinks no smart person would give money to terrorists. He said it just makes no sense.

Reading the discussion among netizens on social media like Facebook, here are some of the comments below.

Kurlee Lorenzo wrote: “Pinapakalat yung balita na na loot daw mga bangko sa Marawi pero wala naman official reports na meron…

Kahit granadahin mo yung vault ng bangko hindi tatalab, makuha pa kaya yung mga pera sa loob?

Clearly somebody is trying to hide in the alibi of the banks looted to cover up.. the money and checks recovered came from some group of people who wants to destabilize the government.. Alam nyo na kung sino sino mga yun…”

Netizen Azy Hazey offered her own theory: “Well keep waiting for more infos about these Ms. Sass. Salamat.
Baka galing bank yun na ni raid. And sana galing talaga yun sa banko na ni raid nila, kasi masakit yang tanggapin, kung sila mismo isa sa nagpapagulo nang Mindanao. Kay daming nagsakripisyo. Kay daming nawala, at kay raming naghinagpis. Kung mga bahay lang nawala,maibabalik yan pero hindi ang mga buhay nang mga inosente. DAMN THESE POWER GRABBER PEOPLE!!!!!

Ps. Wala palang nakawan na nangayari, ( salamat sa info. )kung ganun,funded ang mga gago. >.< !"

But netizen Angelo Avelino quickly shot down the theory: “Wla pa pong binalita na may bank naninakawan sa Marawi . Totoo nga yung kumalat sa Facebook na dating mayor yung nag finance ng Maute”

Source: CNN Philippines Davao Breaking News

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