Former General Vicente Loot, became mayor of Daanbantayan by a margin of only seven votes. Yes seven.
Guns, Goons and Massive Vote Buying
He won the 2016 mayoralty race under the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) over the incumbent Augusto Corro, who ran under the Liberal Party banner. The latter accused Loot of terrorizing and harassing the voters to vote for him and not Corro. Loot allegedly used guns and goons to terrorise the voters and utilised his massive wealth for massive vote buying.
Note that the former general’s wife, Maria Luisa Loot, was mayor of the same town for fifteen years. His stepson is a provincial board member.
Lie-Detector Test Challenge
Loot is one of the five generals named by President Duterte in the drug trade but he has since vehemently denied the accusations saying, “It is merely black propaganda.” He insisted on seeing the President and undergoing a lie detector test.
He has served the police for almost four decades and he surely knows the capability and reliability of a lie detector.
Critical Positions in the PNP
Loot is a graduate of the Philippine Military Academy Class 1982. One of the critical positions Loot headed are the Central Visayas Regional Anti-Narcotics Office, Cebu Provincial Police Office, Deputy Operations of the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas (PRO-7) and Deputy Regional Director in Region 8.
Provinces with High Drug-Related Crimes
Region 7 is Central Visayas which comprises Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental and Siquijor. Under his former jurisdiction are cities where drug trade and drug-related crime is high. Region 8 on the other hand, is Eastern Visayas, it covers the provinces of Biliran, Leyte, Samar, Ormoc and Tacloban.
General Vicente Loot retired from the police service in July 2015.
But Loot got so rich.
Charged with Unexplained Wealth in 2009
In 2009, he was subjected to lifestyle check and he faced charges of unexplained wealth, which he luckily got away with for lack of sufficient evidence. He said he got his riches through bank loans and other legal means.
But how rich is he?
High-end Toys and Properties
He has a net worth of 106.7 million pesos SALN as of 2009. One of the many properties he accummulated are:
18 Homes in Mandaue City Cebu
5 Luxury Vehicles
Agricultural and beach front properties
4 Companies – Eigado Real Estate, Eigado Lending, Gallera Mandaue Cockpit, Sabungan and Canteen.
Loot insisted that his real estate and cockpit arena enabled him to acquire other properties. He and the rest of the four named by Presidente Duterte will be subject to investigations by the Napolcom. The verdict will come out in thirty days.
Will he be able to prove himself innocent?
Source: Philippine Daily Inquirer, Cebu Daily News