Former Bukidnon congressman, senatoriable Neric Acosta pleads not guilty before Sandiganbayan

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BUKIDNON NEWS | MANOLO FORTICH BUKIDNON | POLITICS | PERSONALITIES – Former Bukidnon First District Rep. Nereus Acosta pleaded not guilty to graft charges before the Fourth Division of the Sandiganbayan Monday morning. This, more than a year after Neric Acosta, his mother and aunt first found out that graft charges were filed against them for allegedly defrauding the government of P10.5 million worth of public funds.

For Acosta’s full statement delivered last year on the cases filed against him can be read here.

Acosta said that the graft charges are purely politically motivated. He said that the charges were only brought about because he also filed charges against Ombudsman Mercedita Gutierrez before Congress.

The former Bukidnon congressman ran for the Senate last May 2010 but lost.

The graft charges were filed in relation to the alleged illegal transfer of a Solar Tunnel Dryer worth P2.5 million from the municipality of Talakag to Manolo Fortich and its subsequent use and management by the Bukidnon Integrated Network of Home Industries, Inc. (BINHI).

Acosta and his relatives helped establish BINHI. Nemia Bornidor, Acosta’s aunt, is also a respondent in the case as well as Acosta’s mother, former Manolo Fortich Mayor Socorro “Coring” Acosta.

Acosta is also accused of allegedly releasing government funds to BINHI amounting to P2.5 million and another P5.5 million to the Bukidnon Vegetables Producers Cooperative (BVPC).

Acosta’s mother and aunt will be arraigned next week.

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