December 11, 2017 | MANILA, PHILIPPINES

VACC seeks indictment of Jack Lam

AN ANTI-CRIME GROUP on Thursday pushed for the indictment of Chinese gaming tycoon Jack Lam for violation of the anti-dummy law.

In a preliminary investigation in the Department of Justice (DoJ) set yesterday, the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) filed a 5-page reply affidavit arguing: “It is most respectfully prayed that this Honorable Office find probable cause against respondent for violation Section 2-A of Commonwealth Act No. 108, as amended by Presidential Decree No. 715 or the Anti-Dummy Law,” the reply-affidavit signed by Arsenio Evangelista reads.

Mr. Evangelista insists that the counsel for Mr. Lam, Charlie T. Ang, failed to provide documents to support its claim that Ilocandia is Filipino-owned.

“Stated otherwise, Mr. Ang’s defenses merely constitute plain denials without substantiation,” the VACC said.

To recall, the VACC, in December last year, filed an anti-dummy complaint against Mr. Lam for his allegedly using dummy accounts in the ownership of Fort Ilocandia Resort Hotel in Laoag, Ilocos Norte.

The eight-page complaint reads: “Through corporate layering, Fort Ilocandia through its dummy companies, and its Directors and Officers are able to exercise, enjoy, use and exploit real property in the Philippines contrary to law.”

According to the VACC, Fort Ilocandia’s stockholdings are as follows: 59% to Ilocandia Holdings Corp., 39% -- Intellectual Group Ltd. (IGL) (foreign), less than 1% or 1 share to Jack Lam.

IGL, according to the VACC, is a “corporation duly organized and existing under the laws of the British Virgin Islands (BVI).”

In their latest reply-affidavit, the VACC said that: “There (is) no proof that the BVI companies are registered as doing business in the Philippines nor did Mr. Ang attempt to prove the same.”

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Memorandum Circular No. 8, Series of 2013 states that Filipino nationals should own 60% of a corporation “engaged in nationalized or partly nationalized activities.”

The said memorandum was upheld by the Supreme Court (SC) last April 18 as, voting 8-5, the high court junked the Motion for reconsideration filed by private lawyer Jose M. Roy III that challenged anew the constitutionality of the memorandum.

The DoJ set the next hearing on the case on April 28, 2:00 p.m.