Alleged drug lord Kerwin Espinosa has linked Senator Leila de Lima to the illegal drug trade, Senator Manny Pacquiao said Tuesday.
Pacquiao, who talked with Espinosa for an hour after the latter's return to the country last week, said the younger Espinosa only linked one senator as having received drug money. "Ayon sa kanyang sinabi sa akin ay si Leila de Lima," he said.
He said Espinosa allegedly received a call from someone who introduced himself as an aide of De Lima. "Sabi niya, paano niya masigurado na tao siya ni De Lima? In short, sabi niya, kinokotahan siya para daw sa eleksyon," he said.
"Marami pa siyang kuwento na nagugulat ako, na parang paano niya nasigurado, and then nagbibigay na siya ng parang tariff doon sa tao na yun," he added.
According to Pacquiao, Espinosa wanted to verify if De Lima herself knew about the transactions.
He said the younger Espinosa went to Baguio where he met De Lima. "Yun daw, may mga pagkakataon na nagkikita dito sa MOA saka yung tao niya, tapos pinapunta siya doon sa Baguio...
Pinapunta siya sa Baguio and then doon na-meet niya mismo si De Lima and then sinabi niya nagbigay siya doon," said Pacquiao.
He said Espinosa claimed to have given De Lima a total of P8-million, given monthly in staggered amounts.
De Lima earlier said she expected Espinosa to tag her in his alleged drug deals as part of Duterte administration's plan to malign her.
Police earlier produced a photo of De Lima with the Espinosa family at Burnham Park in Baguio City, which allegedly proved the connection between the Espinosas and the senator.
Senator Panfilo "Ping" Lacson, who presided over the hearing as chair of the Public Order and Illegal Drugs Committee, pointed out that it is not uncommon for politicians to have their photos taken with the public.
"Sanay na sanay kami na lalakad lang kami d'yan, may magpa-picture. Hindi kaya ganoon ang nangyari kay Senator De Lima na nagkita sila sa Burnham, nagkataong nasa Baguio si Senator De Lima at nagpa-picture ngayon sina Kerwin?" he argued.
Source: abs-cbn news