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Son of former Philippine leader held in graft scandal

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Published : 2014-06-23 20:56
Updated : 2014-06-23 20:56

MANILA (AFP) ― Philippine police detained Monday the senator son of former President Joseph Estrada, the second high-profile official arrested within days over a massive corruption scandal.

Senator Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada, 51, gave himself up to police after the Sandiganbayan anti-graft court said it found probable cause to proceed with the charges and issued an arrest warrant.

“I never stole a single centavo from government coffers,” a defiant Estrada told reporters, as he accused President Benigno Aquino of playing politics and cracking down on his opponents.

“At the end of the day, I will prove my innocence,” he said. “I will face all charges against me in court.”

Flanked by his father Joseph Estrada, the senator then boarded a white van trailed by a long line of media vehicles for a short drive to the police headquarters, where he turned himself in.

Estrada is among 54 people indicted for an alleged scam in which lawmakers, their staff, and other officials are accused of embezzling millions of dollars alloted for development projects.

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