Antique mayor faces raps for unlawful cutting of 245 coconut treesBy JOSEPH TRISTAN ROXAS, GMA News
The mayor of Caluya, Antique has been charged at the Sandiganbayan over her alleged unlawful approval of the cutting of 245 coconut trees in the municipality in 2014.
Ombudsman prosecutors filed one count of violation of Section 3(e) of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and one count of violation of Section 5, in relation to Section 9 of the Coconut Preservation Act against Mayor Genevive Gumban Lim-Reyes.
Reyes allegedly "willfully, unlawfully and criminally" ordered the cutting of 254 coconut trees planted and cultivated on the five-hectare land of a certain Juliet Ramos in Barangay Tinogboc on February 28.
The Ombudsman said Reyes took advantage of his official position by approving the clearing operations without due consideration of Ramos's civil rights.
Investigations found that the cutting was also conducted "without compliance with the legal processes of a prior public consultation and judicial recovery of possession, absent a permit to cut the said coconut trees from the Philippine Coconut Authority."
A total bail bond of P42,000 — P30,000 for graft and P12,000 for violation of RA 8048 — has been recommended for Reyes' provisional liberty.
GMA News Online is still reaching out to the camp of Reyes for comment. — MDM, GMA News