The Department of Justice (DOJ) has approved the filing of a criminal complaint against Davidson Bangayan or David Tan and five others for rice smuggling.
In an 11-page resolution released Friday, the DOJ found probable cause to charge Bangayan with violation of Article 186 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) or “monopolies and combinations in restraint of trade” as well as violation of Section 1, in relation to Section 5 of the Commonwealth Act No. 142 as amended by Republic Act 6085 or An Act to Regulate the Use of Aliases.
To be charged with violation of Article 186 along with Bangayan are Elizabeth Faustino, David G. Lim, Judilyne C. Lim, Eleanor C. Rodriguez and Leah Echeveria.
Bangayan and the others allegedly used dummies in making rice importations.
Meanwhile, the DOJ dismissed the complaint filed against other respondents Eugene Pioquinto, Mary Joyce Lim, Jason Colocado, Michael Villanueva, Denis Gonzales, Willy Sy, Sandra Lim, Gil Calipayan, and Inigo Espiritu for violating Article 186 of the RPC and the RA no. 9184 or the Government Procurement Reform Act.
The case against the six respondents stemmed from the complaint filed by the National Bureau of Investigation-Anti-Graft Division (NBI-AGD) stating that the respondents used farmers’ organizations as their dummies in the bidding of rice importations conducted by the National Food Authority (NFA) whose office is in Taguig City.
The DOJ pointed out that, “To set things in proper perspective, it must first be laid out that in a preliminary investigation, the quantum of proof necessary is only the determination of probable cause which merely requires the probability of guilt or reasonable ground for belief. The determination of probable cause needs only to rest on evidence showing that more likely than not, a crime has been committed and there is enough reason to believe that it was committed by the accused.”