Jaybee Sebastian denies he’s a gov’t asset, admits funding De Lima campaign with drug money
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — Jaybee Sebastian, the alleged “king of drug lords” at the New Bilibid Prison, finally testified at a House probe Monday.
He denied Senator Leila De Lima’s claim that he’s a government asset. He admitted to helping De Lima—who was Justice Secretary at the time—fund her 2016 senatorial campaign using drug money.
Sebastian read his sworn affidavit during the hearing, the fourth House probe on the Bilibid drug trade, and said he had no hand in the controversial transfer of 19 inmates to Building 14 of the maximum security compound on December 16, 2014.
“Ako’y napagbintangan na nagbibigay impormasyon sa mga kinauukulan na siyang dahilan ng raid at paglipat ng tinaguriang “Bilibid 19″ sa piitan ng NBI,” Sebastian said.
Prior to his affidavit he was asked by House Committee on Justice Chair Reynaldo Umali if he was indeed a government source.
“Hindi po (No),” Sebastian said.
De Lima earlier said Sebastian was a government asset – the reason why he was not transferred together with other inmates found to be living a lavish lifestyle inside Bilibid.
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She said she was not “favoring” or “protecting” Sebastian.
Several witnesses have told the House probe that Sebastian was “untouchable” because he was giving millions of pesos to De Lima.
De Lima has denied that Sebastian collected drug money for her.
But the truth, according to Sebastian, is not on De Lima’s side.
The convicted carnapper and kidnapper said he thought he was not included in the Bilibid 19 because he was “more disciplined” than the others.
“Pero bandang huli ganun din pala ang pakay nila sa akin na paglilikumin din pala ako ng pondo para sa eleksyon ni Sec. De Lima katulad ng ginagawa sa kanila.”
He said De Lima’s former aide, Joenel Sanchez, called him up three days after the Bilibid raid and asked help in funding De Lima’s campaign.
Sebastian said he gave Sanchez ₱2 million before Christmas, and was able to talk to De Lima herself over the phone. He asked if De Lima received his “gift.”
“Yes, Jaybee, Merry Christmas,” said the voice on the other line, whom Sebastian believes was De Lima’s.
Sebastian said he gave another ₱2 million personally to De Lima on January 8.
A grenade exploded that day, Sebastian said, killing one inmate and wounding 19 others and prompting the transfer of all “commanders” to the “bartolina” (disciplinary dormitory) – except him.
Sebastian said he was able to give a total of ₱10M to De Lima from March to May of 2015. But Sanchez told him his “quota” was raise to ₱5 million per month.
But Sebastian said he failed to meet the demand, which eventually resulted to his transfer to Building 14.
“Gusto ko pong linawin at pasinungalingan ang mga balita o parataang na ako diumano ay untouchable at malakas kay Secretary De Lima,” Sebastian said.
De Lima earlier said Sebastian and other inmates were being forced by her detractors to testify against her.