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SC affirms ruling lifting sequestration of Cojuanco Baguio property

The Supreme Court affirmed a ruling by the Sandiganbayan that lifted the sequestration of a Baguio City property owned by Ramon Cojuangco and his wife, Imelda.

In a 10-page decision promulgated in August, the SC Third Division denied the petition filed by the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) which sought the reversal of the Sandiganbayan ruling.

“As correctly held by the Sandiganbayan, the subject property could not have been acquired by the Spouses Cojuangco through any illegal or improper use of funds belonging to the government, and thus is not a proper object of sequestration,” the SC said.

In 1986, the PCGG requested the Register of Deeds of Baguio to annotate the back of the land title with a sequestration note. 

The note would say: “This title is sequestered by the PCGG and any disposal, conveyance, transfer or sale of such owner should ask permission of this office."

Due to this, C&O Investment and Realty Corporation and Miguel Cojuangco filed a petition for nullification/cancellation of [the] letter of sequestration before the Sandiganbayan.

The Sandiganbayan, for its part, held that the property should not be considered ill-gotten wealth as the transfer certificate title showed that it was acquired by the couple in December 1955, before the term of the late President Ferdinand Marcos Sr.

The Anti-Graft Court also dismissed the motion for reconsideration filed by the PCGG, prompting it to file the present petition before the Supreme Court. — DVM, GMA Integrated News