By Priam Nepomuceno and Lloyd Caliwan
MANILA, (PNA) — The Makati Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 145 Friday ordered the immediate release of the housemaid the alleged P10-billion pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles sent to jail for qualified theft.
Ordered released in Judge Carlito Calpatura’s five-page decision was Dominga Cadelina, 56.
This was after he dismissed the case Napoles filed against Cadelina due to insufficiency of evidence.
Aside from this, the Napoles camp also failed to present strong evidence to pin down the accused in the qualified theft case.
“The prosecution having failed to adduce the required quantum evidence to establish the proof of guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt and having determined that the evidence at hand is insufficient, this case is ordered dismissed both as to criminal and civil aspects of the case,” Capaltura’s decision read.
Cadelina was detained at the Makati City Jail for almost eight months while the court was hearing her case.
She was sent to jail by the Napoles family in January after accusing her of stealing bags, some underwear and a jacket that allegedly amounted to nearly half a million pesos.
Lawyers from the Public Attorney’s Office, who represented Cadelina, earlier asked the court for the dismissal of the case and to grant Demurrer to Evidence or insufficient evidence in law, whether true or not.
PAO chief Persida Acosta maintained that Cadelina was just set up by the Napoleses.
She said the amount indicated in the receipts did not match the prices of the stolen goods in the information presented by the prosecution.
Cadelina, who worked with the Napoles family for 10 years, said the Napoles family got angry at her when she sided with pork scam whistle blower Benhur Luy.
The latter was released from the Makati City Jail Friday noon shortly after it received Makati RTC Branch 145′s decision.