SPOTLIGHT ON JEANE LIM NAPOLES / FIL-AMS IN L.A. PICKET POSH HOME OF NAPOLES DAUGHTER
LOS ANGELES, SEPTEMBER 2, 2013 (INQUIRER) By Nimfa U. Rueda - While thousands tramped to Luneta Park in Manila for the Million People March on Monday, about 100 Filipino-American activists held their own rally in front of the posh Ritz-Carlton Residences, where Jeane Napoles owns a unit.
In the spotlight: Jeane Lim Napoles
POSH LIVING. Online records show Jeane Napoles is the listed owner of a P80-M luxury apartment in the Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles. Photo from Ritz-Carlton website
The 23-year-old Napoles is the daughter of businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles, who is being hunted by Philippine authorities for her alleged role in a P10-billion pork barrel scam.
The young Napoles had posted photos showing her jewelry, designer shoes and handbags and Porsche cars. Her Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts have been deactivated.
Members of the militant Anakbayan-Los Angeles group waved banners and chanted slogans denouncing government corruption.
RECORDS. Los Angeles County records show Jeane Napoles is the listed owner of Unit 37I at the Ritz-Carlton in LA. Photo by Rappler
The ralliers chanted: “Napoles, come out and give our money back.”
In a statement, Anakbayan demanded that the Philippine government prioritize “the people’s needs and not (the officials’) own luxurious lifestyles.”
Referring to the pork barrel in the Philippines, the group said: “For too long, these discretionary funds have been used to fatten the pockets of corrupt politicians at the expense of our people’s welfare.”
THE DAUGTHER Jeane: WHAT A HARD LIFE! [Janet] Napoles said her daughter’s Porsche was a gift when her daughter graduated magna cum laude. Another Porsche was a gift during her daughter’s birthday, she added. She said they also gave jewelry and expensive watches as gifts during her birthday. Napoles denied that they own the 20 pieces of luggage at a Japan airport, but did not disown luggage that arrived in Manila. She said they only had 5 pieces of luggage and a copier machine. Napoles said it was their right to go shopping because they were earning money from their business ventures. She also denied buying all of the items sold at a high-end bag shop. Napoles insisted that their wealth is the the result of legitimate business.]
Also joining the rally were members of the Filipino Migrant Center (FMC), which said the LA protest was part of an “international day of action” for the abolition of the pork barrel.
FMC said overseas Filipinos workers (OFWs) in Canada, Hong Kong and other parts of the world joined the demand for an end to government corruption.
A few kilometers from Ritz-Carlton, more than 200 Fil-Ams gathered in front of the Philippine Consulate to show solidarity with the protesters in Luneta.
At the rally, Los Angeles resident Grace Piñol urged Filipinos around the world to demand that those behind the scam “be held accountable.”
Piñol claimed she was privy to an example of corruption involving a senator. She said her niece was in charge of a project in Mindanao that had been allotted P2.5 million from the senator’s pork barrel.
“They only released P500,000 and pocketed the rest of the money,” she said.
Some of the ralliers came from as far away as San Diego, a two-hour drive from LA.
“I want to show those (corrupt) politicians that we are watching them and that we are united with the protesters back home,” said veterinarian Felix Lapuz.
Actor and community leader Bernardo Bernardo bewailed what he described as “mafia-style” corruption in the Philippine government.
“Something has to change and it has to happen now,” he said.
Art Garcia, spokesman of the United States Action Against Pork Barrel, said similar protest actions were also held in Fremont in Northern California and New York.
“I am also against government corruption. So is our President and I’m glad he has been making some headway in his fight against corruption,” deputy consul general Dan Espiritu said.
He said Filipino politicians should heed the call of Fil-Ams because they represented 4 million Filipinos in America.
Around 150 Filipinos gathered outside the Philippine Consulate in New York to call for the abolition of the pork barrel, a migrants’ rights activist said.
Filipino community leader Daphne Ceniza Kuok said many of those who attended the picket came wearing white. They submitted a petition against the pork barrel.
In their petition, the protesters said President Aquino’s announcement that he was reforming the pork barrel system “did not go far enough.”
“He should … get rid of the system that has allowed our politicians to dip their hands into the country’s coffers practically at will, while a majority of Filipinos suffer from grinding poverty,” said the petition, signed by around 200 Filipinos living in different countries.
The signatories included Filipinos in France, Great Britain, the United States, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, Thailand, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates and Malaysia.
OFWs in Abu Dhabi and Dubai wore white in their workplaces as a sign of protest. Although mass action is banned in Saudi Arabia, Filipinos expressed their solidarity through social media by posting their protest photos.
Mass protests started last week in Hong Kong. The OFWs called for the prosecution of those involved in the scam.
Arlene Andes, based in Brussels, told Radyo Inquirer that the OFWs in Europe had also turned to social media to urge the scrapping of the pork barrel.—With reports from Philip C. Tubeza, Jocelyn R. Uy and Susan K of Radyo Inquirer
Video below: One Vimeo video clip shows her 21st birthday party at Beverly Hills. The video was later made private but a copy was uploaded on YouTube. Meanwhile, another blog claims that the younger Napoles has a clutch bag costing roughly P400,000 and 9 pairs of shoes costing P360,000 each. It also alleged that her watches alone cost P1 million each. ABS-CBN News showed the photos to her mother, Janet Lim Napoles, who confirmed their authenticity.
Jeane Napoles' online accounts had photos of Porsche cars, designer bags, shoes, and jewelry her parents bought for her. Her Tumblr account, in particular, shows her taste in fashion, as well as her passion for travel and parties. More here: Napoles' daughter lives the high life in LA . ABS-CBN
This video -Published on Aug 11, 2013 How it feels to travel with with Jeane Napoles or Jean napolis, the daughter of Janet Lim Napoles accused of 10 billion peso pork barrel scandal in Philippines. These are alleged scam which is in the news lately. Jeane Napolis even had a picture with Justin Bieber.
Jeane Napoles, 23, the younger daughter of Janet Lim-Napoles, deactivated her social media accounts shortly after her mother was named the person behind an alleged multi-billion-peso pork barrel scam.
The controversy put the young lady's lifestyle -- lavish by most standards -- in the spotlight.
But she neglected to remove an old personal blog from 2011, which has allowed netizens to scrutinize her extravagant lifestyle.
The scandal implicating Napoles was first reported by the Philippine Daily Inquirer on Friday, July 12. By Thursday, July 18, her daughter Jeane's Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts had been deactivated.
Jeane's blog shows her inclination for designer shoes, bags, and clothes from brands like Louis Vuitton, YSL, Chanel, and Christian Louboutin.
It has pictures of her trips to Paris and Tokyo, as well as her posing with Hollywood celebrities, including Justin Timberlake, Josh Duhamel, Blake Lively, and Justin Bieber. Another post shows her and her 3 siblings attending a movie premiere, also in Hollywood.
Comments on the Internet decried the young Napoles' lifestyle and accused her of using pork barrel money obtained by her mother to sustain it.
Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi
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