Sandiganbayan orders Marcos family to return US $24 million worth of paintings

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The Sandiganbayan Special Division has ordered the recovery of 146 expensive paintings allegedly purchased by former President Ferdinand Marcos and his family.

In a 42-page partial summary judgment issued by the anti-graft court on Thursday, it said the Marcos family illegally acquired the paintings.

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The paintings cost approximately US $24 million.

According to the court, the value of the paintings was ‘significantly out of proportion’ to the salaries of the Marcos.

“RA 1379 provides that whenever any public officer or employee has acquired during his incumbency an amount of property manifestly out of proportion to his salary…and to his other lawful income, said a property should be presumed prima facie to have been unlawfully acquired,” the court said.

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Also read: Sandiganbayan junks P267-M ill-gotten wealth case against Marcos over photocopied evidence

Sandiganbayan to Marcos family: return US $24 million worth of paintings

“Simply stating that one ‘specifically denies’ an allegation does not make a general denial become specific. In the case of respondents, they failed to state and substantiate how they lawfully acquired the funds used to purchase the paintings, and likewise failed to show proof that they had other legitimate sources of income aside from their combined salaries of $ 304,372.43, ”according to the Sandiganbayan.

The court also ordered the Marcos family not to sell or transfer their ownership, to declare the paintings they still have, and to surrender them.

The Sandiganbayan’s decision came just days after another case was dismissed for the alleged P200 billion ill-gotten wealth of the Marcos family.

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