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Dela Paz, wife planned to tour Europe

Posted by Abi Kwok on November 16, 2008


Wife had money because of bigger bag

By Abigail Kwok, Maila Ager
First Posted 13:48:00 11/15/2008


MANILA, Philippines — (UPDATE) Retired police comptroller Eliseo Dela Paz admitted Saturday that he and his wife planned to go to other European cities after the Interpol Conference in St. Petersburg, Russia, last October after his retirement.

During the Senate investigation, Dela Paz said that apart from the 105,000 euros from the Philippine National Police (PNP) intelligence fund and the 45,000 euros from a certain Tyrone Ng Arejola, Dela Paz and his wife, Maria Fe, also carried with them $20,000 of “personal funds.”

“Yun pong sa personal na pondo po naming mag-asawa, komo paretire na po ako, your honor, eh gagamitin namin kasi mag-iikot kami baka duon sa pangangailangan namin (Since I was about to retire, my wife and I would use our personal funds for our needs when we go around),” said Dela Paz after Senator Loren Legarda asked him why he was carrying such a huge amount of money.

He revealed that he and his wife, together with retired police director Jaime Caringal and the wife of PNP Director General Jesus Verzosa, Cynthia, planned to go to Prague, Budapest, and Vienna. Meanwhile, Arejola had asked Dela Paz to purchase watches in Vienna.

But Dela Paz denied that the 105,000 euros will be used for the four’s “side trip.”

“Hindi po. Dahil ang pera na yun will be subject to liquidation. Hindi ko ma-e-explain kung gagastusin ko po yun (No. Because that money will be subject to liquidation. I wouldn’t be able to explain it if we’ll spend it),” he added.

In its earlier investigation report, the National Police Commission (Napolcom) discovered that the “return travel of the delegates were on different schedules and routes, which appear to be outside of their authorized travel itinerary.”

“It is unusual for a high ranking police officer like Dela Paz to be carrying funds purportedly owned by a private individual…that may expose said police officer to possible charges of impropriety or unexplained wealth,” the Napolcom report said.
At the same time, Dela Paz admitted that a portion of the multimillion-peso worth of euros was caught in possession of his wife in Russia simply because she was carrying a bigger bag.

“I empathize fully with your situation especially with your wife (but) why was it that a portion of the amount of the euros that you were carrying out of Moscow had to be handled by your wife?” Senator Aquilino Pimentel Jr. asked.

“Mas malaki yung bag nya (She had a bigger bag), your honor, so I asked her to carry part of the money, your honor,” said Dela Paz.

“So you see, the situation that your wife unfortunately finds herself in now is really of your own making. I think it’s a pity that she has to be dragged into this thing,” Pimentel said.

Dela Paz’s wife, Fe, was invited in the hearing but did not show up.

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