FROZEN BANK ACCOUNTS OF THE AMPATUAN

The Court of Appeals has frozen the bank accounts of a political clan implicated in the Maguindanao massacre. In a resolution issued on June 6 but made public only two days later, the Court of Appeals froze 24 bank accounts, assets and properties of Ampatuan patriarch Andal Ampatuan Senior as well as 27 members of his clan.

The bank accounts, which the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) believes to contain an estimated one billion pesos (Dh84.79 million), were frozen considering that the cumulative stash exceeded the AMLC’s 50-million-peso threshold to examine questionable finances.

AMLC officials suspect that the Ampatuans used funds from government agencies and manipulated bank accounts to amass wealth.

The Court of Appeals said it saw sufficient grounds to freeze the bank accounts as well as other properties of the Ampatuan clan, including several vehicles and firearms, as these had been illegally acquired.

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