World Bulletin / News Desk
Former Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo was detained on Thursday on charges of plunder, a crime which carries a maximum penalty of life in jail, in one of a series of corruption cases brought against her.
Less than three months after she was released on bail following about eight months in detention on charges of election fraud, the latest charge against the ailing Arroyo involves the more serious offence of misusing state lottery funds.
"When we arrived at the hospital, she was lying on the bed with an IV attached to her," Senior Superintendent Joel Coronel, chief of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, told reporters. Arroyo, who suffers from a spine condition, was being treated for dehydration.
Coronel said Arroyo, 65, was "very cooperative" when police took her fingerprints and photos.
The Ombudsman's office alleges that Arroyo and her co-accused of unlawfully acquiring and accumulating public funds amounting to 366 million pesos ($8.8 million) by diverting lottery funds for personal gain.
Another former Philippine President Joseph Estrada was pursued by the Arroyo administration under the same Plunder Law. He was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison, but was pardoned a short time later.
Coronel said Arroyo would remain under confinement at the army hospital where she was held earlier this year.
Arroyo, president from 2001 to 2010, is unlikely to escape detention this time around as the charge under the Plunder Law is a non-bailable offence.
Arroyo also faces allegations of graft over an aborted $329 million national broadband deal with China's ZTE Corp. in 2007. She denies all charges and posted bail on both cases.
President Benigno Aquino's pursuit of charges against Arroyo and the Philippines' success in kicking out her allies -- the Ombudsman and the Supreme Court chief justice -- all within a span of about a year have been cheered by investors as clear signs that the government is serious in its anti-graft agenda.
Arroyo was stopped last year by government agents at Manila's main international airport as she was on her way to board a plane for overseas treatment. ($1 = 41.6050 Philippine pesos)
Days after a suicide bomber killed 57 people at a Kabul voter registration centre, highlighting the security challenges around October's parliamentary polls, Stoltenberg said NATO forces could play a "limited" security role.
The US social media giant's Chief Technology Officer Mike Schroepfer appeared before a British parliamentary committee probing the role of fake news in recent votes, and how data gathered from the network was used to target potential voters.
If confirmed as US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo will reportedly head to Israel for first official trip overseas
Suspects were indicted for sponsoring the terror groups PKK, Fetullah Terrorist Organization, and leftist DHKP/C
Tim Cook had private meeting with U.S. president to discuss White House trade policies
Foreign ministers to discuss cooperation within framework of Astana mechanism for Syria on April 28
Company bows to protests after deleting video but applies age restriction
'More violence will not bring peace and security to Afghanistan', says State Department
This is the second Palestinian journalist to have died by Israeli gunfire
Prime Minister Sharma Oli accepts that rebuilding after 2015 earthquake has remained sluggish
At least 41 Gazans were killed in anti-occupation rallies since last month
Some 6,500 Palestinians are currently being held in Israeli prisons
'Texas honors all the men and women who protect and serve our communities, and justice will be served,' Texas governor says
Police said the suspect, 25-year-old Alek Minassian, was not known to them before Monday's carnage in Canada's most populous city, which also left 15 people injured.
At least 41 Palestinians were martyred by Israeli gunfire on Gaza border since March 30
Talks are expected to tackle the possibility of U.S. troop withdrawal from war-torn Syria