The Sandiganbayan 7th Division turned down the motion of former Tanudan, Kalinga mayor Francisca Cawi of Kalinga who sought to quash the malversation case against her concerning the misuse of P2.9 million of government funds.
The anti-graft court disagreed with Cawi who argued that her constitutional right for the speedy disposition of cases was violated by the Office of the Ombudsman for taking eight years in conducting a preliminary investigation before filing the case before the Sandiganbayan.
“A mere mathematical reckoning of the time involved is not sufficient,” read the court’s resolution. Particular regard must be taken of the facts and circumstances peculiar to each case. For this reason, a balancing test must of applying societal interests and the rights of the accused necessarily compels the court to approach speedy trial cases on an ad hoc basis,” read the court’s resolution.
The case stemmed from the issuance of three checks issued to her from 2004 to 2007.
Though the checks were issued in her name, the funds were cash advances meant to defray expenses and municipal obligations.
However, under the charges, Cawi had allegedly failed to liquidate the funds.