Former police officer and now convict Engelberto Durano on Thursday said he personally delivered to Senator Leila de Lima PHP1.5 million in protection money from drug kingpin Jeffrey “Jaguar” Diaz.
Durano was one of the witnesses during the third hearing of the House of Representatives committee on justice on the proliferation of illegal drugs inside the New Bilibid Prison (NBP).
Durano said he referred Diaz to De Lima’s former driver, Ronnie Dayan, who was requesting to raise campaign funds for De Lima in exchange of protection.
“Bandang January 2014, sinabihan ko si Jaguar tungkol sa “protection money” at naging lubos na interesado si Jaguar sa nasabing alok ni Ronnie, (Sometime in January 2014, I told Jaguar about the protection money and he became totally interested to the said offer of Ronnie),” Durano said.
Dayan had illegal drug transactions with Diaz through three Banco de Oro bank accounts with a total amounting to PHP27.3 million pesos, Durano noted.
Between December and November 2014, Durano said he was instructed by Diaz to help him come up with PHP1.5 million, which the former tried to raise by borrowing money from a certain Noel Martinez.
Durano was then asked to personally deliver the PHP1.5 million placed in a gift-wrapped shoe box to De Lima at the office of the “Commando” gang.
When Durano reached the office of fellow inmate Jaybee Sebastian at Bilibid TV Channel 3, he noted that De Lima was inside together with Sebastian and another Bilibid inmate Hans Tan.
”Inabot ko na kay Secretary De Lima ang kahon na may lamang PHP1.5 million at sinabi “Ma’am, ito na po” (I handed the box containing PHP1.5 million to Secretary De Lima and I said “Ma’am, here it is”),” Durano said.
Durano and Bilibid inmate Nonilo Arile were granted immunity from suit by House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez. (PNA)