- Ex-PDEA agent Marcelino allegedly sent messages to a friend detailing plans to use him against De Lima
- The DOJ recently revived the drug charges against Marcelino, arguing there is sufficient evidence
- De Lima said she got copies of said messages sent by a common friend
- The senator added her enemies will likely use Marcelino to pin her down to the Bilibid drug trade
MANILA, Philippines – Embattled Senator Leila De Lima has raised concerns after the Department of Justice (DOJ) on Wednesday reversed its earlier decision clearing former Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) agent and Marine Lt. Col. Ferdinand Marcelino of drug charges.
Marcelino was earlier cleared of drug possession charges in a case that stemmed from a drug raid where he was allegedly found in possession of 6o kilos of shabu last January. The former top PDEA agent claimed he was ‘framed-up’ and the charges against him were subsequently dropped.
But the DOJ has recently revived the case against Marcelino and his Chinese companion, Yan Yi Shoo, arguing that there is sufficient evidence to pursue the complaint against the two the Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
However, De Lima smelled conspiracy to use Marcelino as another witness against her in the ongoing Lower House investigation on her alleged link to the Bilibid drug trade.
Text messages from Marcelino
In a statement to reporters on Thursday, De Lima said he received information that Marcelino sent a text message to a common friend, a copy of which, the senator said, she managed to get hold of.
“Look at the circumstances. I have no reason to doubt what was forwarded to me from Colonel Marcelino na iniipit siya para ituro whatever it is na ituturo nila sa akin (that he is being pressured to link me to whatever it is that they want me be linked),” De Lima revealed.
The messages, according to De Lima, read as follows: “Hindi pa ako masyadong makagalaw at labas ngayon dahil ang daming gustong kumatay sa akin, bok. Di ko pa rin mapuntahan si Senator LD (Leila De Lima) kasi ginagawan kami ng mga fabricated stories.”
[I cannot move freely now because there are many who are after me. I cannot go to Senator LD because they’re fabricating stories about us.]
Another message disclosed by De Lima said: “There are also some groups that are trying to convince me to speak against her, but rest assured na hindi ako pagagamit sa kanila (they cannot use me), Mistah. Not only because I really appreciate it and forever indebted sa inyo ni ma’am, but because people deserve no less than the truth and justice.”
And in yet another message sent on September 5, Marcelino allegedly told his friend: “Pressures against me are mounting. They would even reopen my case, but rest assured that I will never give in to them.”
The DOJ has yet to react on De Lima’s allegation.