Ombudsman asked to suspend Acosta, Erfe

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By James Hernandez

The Office of the Ombudsman has been asked to suspend Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) Chief Persida Acosta and her forensics team chief Dr. Erwin Erfe who are both facing complaints for the creation of a forensics laboratory.

In his motion, complainant lawyer Wilfredo Garrido Jr. Pointed out “there is imminent danger that respondents can tamper with the evidence in this case.”

“The preventive suspension will ensure that any evidence in possession of respondent or in the premises of the Public Attorney’s Office will be preserved,” Garrido said.

Citing the Ombudsman Act of 1989, Garrido said the Ombudsman is authorized to issue a preventive suspension if there strong evidence of guilt.

The complaint filed by Garrido concerns the creation of the PAO’s forensic laboratory which the complainant said had no authority from Congress.

Because of this, Garrido accused Acosta and Erfe of having committed graft, falsification of public documents, malversation of public funds, illegal use of public funds or property, as well as grave misconduct, serious dishonesty, grave abuse of authority and conduct projudicial to the best interest of public service.

“Apart from misusing public funds to create an office without authority, respondents’ propensity to manufacture evidence in an office under their direct control is indicative of bias, persecution, malice and downright dishonesty,” read the complaint.

The complainant said Acosta had already used the forensicss laboratory which resulted in the Dengvaxia scare.

“Acosta and her sidekick Erfe have fanned public anger, even creating hysteria, by painting the deaths as the result of a nefarious scheme to inject hundreds of thousands of children with an untested, experimental, ineffective and dangerous vaccine called Dengvaxia,” he said.

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