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PIA Press Release

Miriam zeroes in on Doble's past

Manila (17 September) -- With all Cabinet and military officials snubbing the "Hello Garci" hearing Monday, administration Sen. Miriam Santiago zeroed in on the checkered past of the lone resource person, former T/Sgt. Vidal Doble Jr.

Santiago questioned Doble's credibility as a wiretapper in the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (Isafp), as well as his womanizing ways.

"You claim you don't know anything about wiretaps. So what are you talking about now? You claimed you knew about the Garci tapes, that's why you were such a celebrity for the past few months. Now you say you know nothing about wiretapping. I don't understand you," she said in Filipino.

Santiago asked Doble about his stint in the Isafp, where the erstwhile military spy said was mainly to install telephone lines, and not to actually wiretap.

As this developed, Santiago presented a supposed "signed statement" from Mrs Arlene Doble, claiming the latter's husband had physically harmed her.

Santiago said Arlene was the signatory in a statement "sent anonymously" and "apparently signed by her."

"I'm not vouching (for the document's authenticity), I want (the allegations) investigated," she said of the statement.

Upon questioning by Sen. Richard Gordon, Doble admitted he may have physically confronted his wife. "Minsan po (Sometimes)," he said.

Santiago also questioned how Doble could maintain two "girlfriends" Marietta Santos and Jocelyn Andaya aside from his wife Arlene, on a monthly salary of less than P20,000.

"I cannot sustain the two women, your honor. My wife holds my ATM card," Doble replied in Filipino.

Also, Santiago questioned Doble's presence at the Solid Mills building in Makati City in 2000, when Doble was with the now-defunct Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Task Force (PAOCTF).

Doble said they were conducting a "coordination." Santiago asked, "If you're just a phone line installer, what were you doing in safe houses and why were you made part of a wiretap team? Try answering that."

Incidentally, Sen. Panfilo Lacson set up an office at the Solid Mills building in 2004, four years after Doble's visit there. Lacson sought the reopening of the "Hello, Garci" probe last August 21 after presenting a video clip of Doble's revelations.

Santiago asked the Senate to issue subpoenas for statements from the Pasay City police and the director of hospital in Villamor Air Base that Doble had physically harmed his wife.

Also, she assailed Doble's claim that his family was kept in custody in then AFP chief of staff Efren Abu's quarters, saying Arlene claimed her children were allowed to attend school inside Camp Aguinaldo.

"We were not confined in Abu's quarters. We were allowed to stay in the Isafp camp. My children were enrolled in a school in Camp Aguinaldo, they could stroll and watch movies," Santiago read from Arlene's supposed statement written in Filipino.

The "statement" also said one of Doble's children, Dharren, was been registered at the Philippine Children's Hospital as a patient.

Santiago also cited the statement claiming that when Lacson delivered his privilege speech last August 21, priests and nuns went to the Doble house in Kidapawan City.

"It is not sworn, it's not even dated and I don't even know who it came from," Santiago admitted, referring to Arlene's alleged signed statement.

Lacson said that when he was PAOCTF and PNP chief, he gave allowances to PAOCTF operatives "intelligence funds for them to use in the performance of their assigned duties." (PIA-MMIO) [top]

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