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NBN-ZTE deal whistleblower Rodolfo “Jun” Lozada voluntarily surrendered to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Thursday, following the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold their conviction in a graft case.
It was on May 30 when the Sandiganbayan issued an arrest order against Lozada and his brother Jose Orlando.
The graft case rooted from Lozada, then-Philippine Forest Corporation (Philforest) Former Philippine Forest Corporation (PFC) President and Chief Executive Officer, allegedly awarding to his brother a leasehold right of some 6.599 hectares of public land under the Lupang Hinirang Program of the agency.
To recall, Lozada in 2007 to 2008 was the star witness in the anomalous $329-million National Broadband Network (NBN) and Zhong Xing Telecommunications Equipment International Investment Limited (ZTE) deal.
Lozada’s testimonies led to the filing of graft cases against then-President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, former Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Benjamin Abalos, and others. They were later acquitted of the charges.
In 2011, the Sandiganbayan filed graft charges against Lozada and his brother.
In a statement, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra also confirmed that Lozada is now at the NBI.
“But he will be transferred to the National Penitentiary to serve his sentence. When, it depends on the order of commitment by the court. Unfortunately, I have no copy of such order,” said Guevarra.
Lozada, 59, will face a minimum imprisonment of 6 years and one month, and maximum imprisonment of 10 years and one day.