Estrada Friend Posts Bail

Published December 20th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

A businessman friend of President Joseph Estrada posted bail on Wednesday after he was indicted in an insider trading case that led to the Philippine leader's impeachment. 

Dante Tan paid a 120,000-peso (2,400-dollar) bail bond to a regional trial court in Manila, his lawyer Hans Santos told reporters. 

The justice department on Tuesday formally charged Tan of having "engaged in manipulative acts that led to the rise in the stock price of BW Resources Corp. last year." 

Tan is the founder of the gaming stock, since renamed Fairmont Holdings Inc., whose spectacular rise and fall caused the near collapse of the Philippine Stock Exchange in March. 

He could be jailed for 21 years if found guilty of the charges for which he was indicted. 

The gaming firm's shares soared more than 5,000 percent during an eight-month period ending in October 1999. The stock plummeted the day after it announced that Macau casino mogul Stanley Ho had taken a minority stake and had been elected company chairman. 

It was alleged that investors and brokers colluded in effecting artificial sales to boost prices in BW Resources. 

Allegations that Estrada had shielded Tan from securities regulators investigating the BW scandal is among the charges Estrada is currently facing in his Senate trial which could result in his removal from office. 

Estrada was impeached in November after a former friend accused him of pocketing millions in bribes from illegal gambling syndicates and skimming government excise taxes to finance a lavish lifestyle -- MANILA (AFP)  

 

 

 

© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

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