Lagman on immunity for Marcoses: ‘The cat is out of the bag’

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Albay first-district Rep. Edcel Lagman said President Rodrigo Duterte’s revelation that the Marcos family’s offer to return part of their wealth would not happen without the assurance they would not be jailed.

“The cat is out of the bag: President Duterte wants the Congress to grant the Marcoses immunity from criminal prosecution in exchange for the return of part of the Marcos loot,” said Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman.

“This is the hitherto hidden agenda why the President has been urging the Congress to authorize him to negotiate for the recovery of the Marcos hidden wealth,” he added.

“Itong mga Marcos, hindi ito papayag na isauli tapos ikulong sila,” Duterte said. “Isauli ko pero huwag mo ako kulungin.”

But Lagman argued that it is well settled in Philippine jurisprudence that criminal liability is not subject to compromise. “In Chavez vs. PCGG (December 9, 1998), the Supreme Court voided the challenged compromise agreement in so far as it granted the Marcoses immunity from criminal prosecution,” he said.

“A culprit who returns what he has stolen is not liberated from criminal prosecution,” he said.