ONE of two passports submitted by former elections commissioner Virgilio Garcillano to a congressional inquiry was irregular, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said.

In a two-page certification, Deputy BSP Governor Armando Suratos told the House committee on public information that Garcillano’s passport, with number JJ 243816, “does not conform to standard” on six counts.

The BSP, which manufactures passport booklets, issued the certification after an evaluation of the two passports on the request made by the House committee last month.

The passports were submitted by Garcillano during the joint House inquiry that last year looked into the wiretapping controversy involving the former elections official and several individuals, including the President.

When he finally answered the congressional summons in December, Garcillano maintained that he never left the country in the months since June that he disappeared from public view. He testified in the inquiry that he had merely sought refuge with his friends in Mindanao.

Both his previous and current passports were clear of any markings indicating foreign travel.

But the joint committee pursued the paper trail, after having received information from a diplomatic official that “a certain Garcillano” arrived in Singapore at 10.00 p.m. on 14 July 2005 and departed from there to London.

Moreover, the committee was provided by Justice secretary Raul Gonzalez with a copy of a note verbale from the Singaporean Foreign Ministry to the Singapore Philippine Embassy, confirming that “Mr. Virgilio Garcillano transited in Singapore on 14 July 2005 onboard a Learjet 35 with the registration number RP-C 1426. Mr. Garcillano departed Singapore on 15 July onboard Singapore Airlines Flight SQ 320.”

In its certification, dated March 20 and received by Congress on Wednesday, the BSP said Garcillano’s old passport (No. BB 602533) “conforms to standard.”

The BSP then made the following observations about Garcillano’s second passport (No. JJ 243816):

  • Size of booklet (123 mm. x 85 mm.) smaller than standard (125 mm. +/- 0.75 x 88 mm. +/- 0.75).
  • Inside Front Cover (Data page) and Inside Back Cover: Paper and print do not conform to standard.
  • Stitching: Additional stitch along the seam does not conform to standard.
  • Pages 1 to 32: Presence of cuts and joints along the seam does not conform to standard. (The cuts and seams should not be present).
  • Page 32: Presence of the text “BISA — VISA” on the upper portion of the page does not conform to standard. (The text “BISA — VISA” should not be present on the upper portion of the page).
  • Page 32: Print quality of the text “Sakaling maaksidente o mamatay …” and the lines therein do not conform to standard.

The evaluation was conducted by Gloria Solomon, a Securities Production Specialist.

Presenting the BSP’s findings to the media yesterday, Cavite Rep. Gilbert Remulla was quoted to have exclaimed, “It’s fake! It’s fake! I told you so.” Remulla used to be lead chair in the House inquiry.

Makati Rep. Teodoro Locsin Jr., inquiry co-chair, meanwhile chose to avoid using the word “fake,” saying, “We are not experts to make such conclusions.” To which, Remulla then remarked, “But how else will you describe it?”

Locsin stressed, however, that the possibility that Garcillano might have submitted an irregular passport was already covered by the committee report.

In the report, the committees recommended that the chamber continue to investigate the possibility that Garcillano indeed fled the country while ignoring repeated summons from the chamber. “He may have committed forgery to perjure himself before the Joint Committee when he denied leaving the country,” the report said.

Further, the committees recommended the prosecution of individuals and offices who may have assisted Garcillano in his flight abroad, “if such is shown.”

During the inquiry, the Bureau of Immigration told the committees that, based on its records, Garcillano last left the country in 1993.

“Nonetheless,” the report said, “a review is called for of the rules and regulations of the Department of Foreign Affairs, Bureau of Immigration, Air Transportation Office, Aviation Security Group and other air or sea transportation agencies covering the arrival and departure of public or private aircraft and seacraft to identify system shortcomings and procedural loopholes that might permit unrecorded foreign arrivals and departures.”

Click here to view a copy of the signed BSP certification.

26 Responses to BSP finds irregularities in Garcillano’s passport

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mowa

March 23rd, 2006 at 6:47 pm

give a chance ? ano po yun ? kung karaniwang tao ang nameke ng public document bibigyan po ba nyo ng chance ?sobra na yan.

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polsjs

March 23rd, 2006 at 6:48 pm

Who will have Bunyi’s two CD’s authenticated?
There’s a continuing conspiracy to coverup.

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arnl_gara

March 23rd, 2006 at 9:16 pm

dapat si garcillano makulong yan, matandang hari ng sinungaling, gusto nya tayong gawing parang mga tanga na maniniwala sa mga kasinungalingan nya!

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jr_lad

March 23rd, 2006 at 9:21 pm

i think garci will disappear again. and after 4-5 months he will show up prepared with a new alibi. by then the people have already forgotten the fake passport. and then the soap opera continues. the comedy continues. the same old story. the same apathy.

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baycas

March 23rd, 2006 at 11:44 pm

heard on radio, garci’s lawyer ed doesn’t know that bsp prints Philippine passports (“dahil ba pera ang hawak nila?) — hahaha!

now, he avers that garci’s real passport was replaced with a tampered one (“hanep sa palusot!”) — huhuhu.

—–
House kept Garcillano’s passport for 3 months, lawyer says
Article posted March 23, 2006, 7:01 pm

Lawyer Ed Tamundong, legal counsel of former election commissioner Virgilio Garcillano, said his client’s passport was under the custody of the House of Representatives for three months.

Tamundong said Garcillano submitted his passport on Dec. 14, 2005.

On Jan. 25, 2006, the passport was presented to the media. It was with the House until now, Tamundong said.

Tamundong said he requested the House to return the passport after the investigation, but the House committees refused.

“If the passport was fake, bakit hindi nagsabi ang Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) na fake yan,” he said.

“Kaya for three months nasa Kongreso ang passport. Kung saan-saan dumaan yan, kung kani-kaninong kamay ang humawak,” he said.

Tamundong said Garcillano has a lot of enemies so it is possible that the passport was tampered before the BSP examined it.

He said it was wrong to say that Garcillano’s passport was fake.

(pls. continue reading here http://www2.igma.tv/gmanews.tv/breakingnews.php?sec=13&id=2629 )

—–

i believe garci’s a dead end (even if he’ll be prosecuted)…mayuga report too…how about the present SC? care for a prediction, anyone?

although i already have my own prediction, it’s still a “wait and see,” i guess…

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schumey

March 24th, 2006 at 4:17 am

Dahil daw hawak ng kongreso ng tatlong buwan ang passport ni Garci, maaari daw na ito ay napalitan. Kung ito ay ating paniniwalaan, puwede din nating sabihin ang ang mga balota na nasa pangangalaga ng kongreso ay maaari ding napalitan. Ano sa palagay niyo?

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lutongmakaw

March 24th, 2006 at 9:55 am

When you have a mother of all liar (GMA) in our mist..what do we expect if not a willing liar such as Garci and and a payable liar such as Tamundong.

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spellvexit

March 24th, 2006 at 11:18 am

The Laws of this country are being trampled by the likes of Garcillano because lying is such an inconsequential offense.

Why are you persecuting the poor Garci for lying?

His offenses are ridiculously negligible compared to Arroyo’s! Cheating, tampering (COCs), malversation (of the recovered Marcos funds), bribery (to solons during the ’04 polls) and oh, yes, the least of all her “lapses” — lying (“I will not run,” and the “I am sorry” speech).

We tolerated our so-called head of state to cheat and to steal. Why couldn’t we allow an insignificant misdemeanor to slide?

If we wish to set the twigs straight, the root must be firmly grounded and the trunk must be upright. However, having as our national trunk this midget called Arroyo, what moral rectitude can you expect from its branches?

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spellvexit

March 24th, 2006 at 11:59 am

It’s a good thing people have already seen the ill effects of “EDSA” to change governments. Arroyo and her hubby, the chubby Mike, did some devious, sneaky behind-the-scene maneuvering in the run-in to the EDSA 2. This betrayal caused people to reciprocate the same treatment to her presidency.

This payback launched by the Estrada faction (I think) is grounded on the principle of political precedence. Add to that the hounding question of legitimacy surrounding her presidency, Arroyo is indeed lucky that this precedence has reared its ugly head early.

I think that is also one of the major reasons why the current VP de Castro refuses to participate in ousting his extremely unpopular boss. As no one is perfect or pristinely clean so as to dismiss the possibility of anyone finding any skeletons in one’s closets, de Castro does not want to be the next Arroyo.

And I say this is a very fortunate development for Arroyo.

If the people in the opposition hasn’t recognized this principle, she would have been assassinated by now. All other legal, quasi- or pseudo-legal means of removing her from the Presidential office have failed. Killing her remains as the only viable option to get her out of Malacanan.

Needless to say, whoever assumes office after an assassination is himself subject to the same threat.
—————————- ******————————–

Although Arroyo constantly blames the political opposition for the country’s woes, ironically, it is her stay in office that’s exacerbating the problems in our country. Albeit questionable, she is the president of this country, yet every chance she gets to speak she acts like a vindictive, back-stabbing, petty little (pun intended) housewife out to grind axes with her neighbor.

This behavior is not very presidential (well, not that her stature and her duck-like gait are of any help). There is no such thing as a cooperative opposition. It is a contradiction in terms and in reality. Being the leader of the land, she must not only command respect, but more importantly, lead inspite of opposition. She must not only allow opposition voices but must be able to win their respect without silencing them.

Alas, her Marcosian tactics in governing this country may have grown out of a frustration with the democratic process and thus, borne out of a last-ditch effort to cling on to power.

Twenty years ago, we ousted a dictator. Today, we are allowing another one to get her way.

And worse still, she’s not even charming.

In this case, I cannot help but feel that it serves us right, as a people.

Dr Robert Anthony wrote, “If you are constantly being maltreated, you are cooperating with the treatment.”

Hai…. We Filipinos, we docile Filipinos…

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lokalokang matino

March 24th, 2006 at 12:08 pm

May I borrow the phrase, “WHAT’S HAPPENING TO OUR COUNTRY, GENERAL?”

I ask this because,the reactions of the majority in congress is unbeleiveable. They knew too well na niloloko na sila ni Garci. OK lang sa kanila. Is it because, if they run after Garci they will stumble on gloria? Are they afraid to find out that gloria and garci sleep in the same bed of lies?

Our country is in mess, how, who, when will we be able to put the house in order?

MAY THE GOOD LORD HELP US!!
I mean our Lord UP there!!! Not gloria’s lord.

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jester-in-exile

March 24th, 2006 at 12:31 pm

lokalokang matino,

GMA’s “lord”?

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penpenpen88

March 24th, 2006 at 1:46 pm

just saw his lawyer on anc today.. imagine that …he can spin all those damaging BSP revelations and add his own dash of theories into a new theory that casts doubt as to the revelations of bsp in favor of his crooked client.. i mean watta waste of intellect.. sabagay sterotypical na yan ng mga administration lawyers..alwys using the law not to find the truth but for the benefit of oneself… walang delicdeza… di ginagamit ng talino para sa kapakanan ng nakararami.. i suggest we put up website for all those corrupt officials in government… list and compile all their corruptions just so the people will know lang kung sino ng ineellect nila.. how bout it guys is that feasible?

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Partisanong Lagalag

March 24th, 2006 at 3:21 pm

Ang palusot nila Garci ngayon ay magpepresenta nang mga passport/s na may similar defects to his para ipalabas na may mga passports na merong factory defects. Tapos ipapalabas na isa lang si Garci sa mga na-isyuhan ng ganitong defective passports. Who knows? Naging Arrovo nga ang ispeling ng apelyedo ni GMA sa perang gawa ng BSP, hindi malayong magkamali rin ito sa passport.

Hindi mauubusan ng pakana ang Malakanyang dahil hindi nila hahayaang macorner si Garci at tumuga ito. Kung magigipit na ang Malakanyang, malamang ay mababalitaan na lang nating inatakeng bigla sa puso si Garci, o di kaya bigla na lang itong inambus ng NPA o nang mga tauhan ni Gringo. Solve ang kaso.

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INSIDE PCIJ: Stories behind our stories » Garcillano faces charges of perjury, falsification, forgery

March 24th, 2006 at 5:30 pm

[…] They also attached the laboratory examination report from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas that showed that one of the two passports submitted by Garcillano to the inquiring committees “does not conform to standard.” […]

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spellvexit

March 24th, 2006 at 10:16 pm

TO ALL THOSE CONCERNED WITH THE “SPIN” ON THE FALSE PASSPORT OF GARCI:

—- Tamondong is as stupid as his hairdo. There’s no way he can squiggle his client out of this bind now because before the passports were received into evidence by the Congress Secretariat, his client, Garci, affixed his signatures on them.

Mishandled, my ass!

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bukolitos

March 25th, 2006 at 1:49 am

What else is new? Garcillano will never be prosecuted nor be found guilty of anything as long as GMA and her congress is around. Selective ang justice system ng Pilipinas. Pag pro GMA ka, walang kaso. Pag Anti GMA ka, maski kupong kupong pa ang kaso ay lagot ka kay Secretura Gonzales. Pro GMA, Chavit Singson, Garcillano, Jose Pidal, Nani Perez walang kaso basta aso.

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lokalokang matino

March 26th, 2006 at 1:13 am

Partisanong Lagalag,

sana naman ang scenario ay — Nagsampalan sila ni gloria at sa kanilang pagaaway dumating ang PSG at binaril si GARCI subalit sa dami ng bala nadamay si gloria at pareho deadbol on the spot., O solve bigla mga kaso!!!

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naykika

March 26th, 2006 at 9:25 pm

Just for a fake passport and it became a national event? And nobody seemed to know how did it come about? And we supposed to have thousand of experts, the caliber of sherlock holmes. Or another circus on the offing?

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Marky2000

March 27th, 2006 at 12:05 am

fake ung ma’m nya eh. so malaks loob na mameke. obyus di ba?

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Marky2000

March 27th, 2006 at 12:09 am

Page 32: Print quality of the text “Sakaling maaksidente o mamatay …” and the lines therein do not conform to standard.

taena..tagal naman..pati na ung lady boss nya

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penpenpen88

March 27th, 2006 at 6:30 pm

by naykika
Just for a fake passport and it became a national event? And nobody seemed to know how did it come about? And we supposed to have thousand of experts, the caliber of sherlock holmes. Or another circus on the offing?

–problem kasi with some people makitid yung utak (no offense).. look at the big picture… garci tape—> garcillano—-> di raw nag abroad —–> sabi ng singapore government dumaan sya dun——> passport la naman tatak —-> peke pala yung passport.. gets mo na??

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naykika

March 28th, 2006 at 8:53 am

bypenpenpen88 : –problem kasi with some people makitid yung utak (no offense).. look at the big picture… garci tape—> garcillano—-> di raw nag abroad —–> sabi ng singapore government dumaan sya dun——> passport la naman tatak —-> peke pala yung passport.. gets mo na??

Just wondering-this matter could have been easily handled by one single investigation. Just try crossing the border here with a fake passport and even a rookie border officer can detect one. Anyway if you expect a suspect to tell the truth instead of digging the facts, the way the Good mr holmes did or just a simple process of good investigative works then good luck.

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INSIDE PCIJ: Stories behind our stories » Minority report on wiretap probe recommends Garcillano, Bunye charged

March 30th, 2006 at 7:35 pm

[…] The minority report likewise recommended Garcillano be charged for violating the Philippine Passport Act of 1996 and committing perjury when he testified in December last year that he never left the country when the wiretapping controversy broke out. It noted the Joint Committee’s failure to highlight evidence that cast doubts on Garcillano’s testimony, foremost of which is the note verbale from the Singaporean Government whose integrity was duly supported by both the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the belated report of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas that Garcillano’s “clean” passport does not conform to standard. […]

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INSIDE PCIJ: Stories behind our stories » More cases filed against Garcillano

April 4th, 2006 at 8:34 pm

[…] On March 23, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, in a Laboratory examination report, found discrepancies in one of Garcillano’s passports. […]

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cadex

April 10th, 2006 at 10:41 pm

mas paniniwalaan ko ang statement ng singapore regarding sa entry ni garcillano,mas bilib ako sa batas at sistema ng singapore walang sinasanto kumpara sa atin si GMA ang santo ng mga aso.unless na lang kung pagdating sa kamay ni gonzales eh sabihing pineke din para mejo magulo ang sitwasyon.

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INSIDE PCIJ » Garcillano off the hook

December 25th, 2006 at 1:35 am

[…] “What was merely found therein was that the passport ‘does not conform to standards,’” Yarte wrote. “If indeed there was forgery or counterfeiting, the BSP report would have stated it so in no uncertain terms.” (See post: BSP finds irregularities in Garcillano’s passport.) […]

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