Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos (Switzerland)

Jurisdiction of Origin : 
Position of Public Officials/Persons (Years in Office): 
President (F. Marcos,1965-1986); First Lady, Governor of Metro Manila and Minister of Human Settlements (I. Marcos. Governor and Minister from 1978-1986)
Jurisdiction of Recovery Effort / Asset Location: 
Jurisidction of Asset Recovery - Description: 
Undertaking Recovery Effort, Location of Recovery Effort, Asset Location / Alleged Asset Location
Recovery Start (Year): 
1986
Recovery End (Year): 
2004
Money laundering Implicated?: 
Yes
Status of Asset Recovery : 
Completed
Assets Returned (USD): 
$683,000,000
Disposition of Criminal Case(s): 

A trial in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on criminal racketeering and fraud charges concluded in an acquittal for Mrs. Marcos. Mr. Marcos had also been indicted in the case, but the court had deemed him too ill to stand trial. (Sources: US v. Tantoco, et al, Case No. 1-87-cr-598-JFK (S.D.N.Y.), Docket Report accessed on January 2, 2011 and Indictment of October 22, 1988, obtained from US National Archives; Craig Wolff, "The Marcos Verdict; Marcos Is Cleared of All Charges In Racketeering and Fraud Case," New York Times, July 3, 1990.) On April 21, 2010, the GMA News reported that "According to records of the Philippine anti-graft court Sandiganbayan as of 2005, Mrs. Marcos continues to face 11 criminal charges and 25 civil cases." (Source: Sohpia Regina M. Dedace, "Imelda Marcos and her road to vindication," GMA News, April 21, 2010, accessed at http://www.gmanews.tv/story/188960/imelda-marcos-and-her-road-to-vindica....)

Summary: 
In 2004, Switzerland released $683 million in funds to the Philippines Treasury, following a July 2003 Philippine Supreme Court decision ordering forfeiture of the Marcos Swiss deposits.  The $683 million represents sum of the $356 million frozen and accumulated interest. (Source: Merceditas Gutierrez Ombudsman, Republic of the Philippines, "Ferdinand E. Marcos (Philippines): A Case Study," in ADB/OECD Anti-Corruption Initiative for Asia and the Pacific, Asset Recovery and Mutual Legal Assistance in Asia and the Pacific, Proceedings of the 6th Regional Seminar on Making International Anti-Corruption Standards Operational (Bali, 5-7 September 2007.)  As stated in the Swiss Federal Office of Justice Press Release of August 5, 2003, "The Marcos case began in 1986 when the Federal Council ordered bank accounts to be frozen. In 1990, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court approved the handover to the Phillippines of bank documents relating to the Marcos family, but ruled that the actual return of assets would be conditional upon a final and absolute judgment by a Phillippine court. In 1997, the Court established that the majority of the Marcos foundation assets were of criminal origin and permitted their transfer to a escrow account in Manila, even though no Phillippine court ruling had yet been issued.  The Swiss Federal Supreme Court set two conditions for this advance transfer, however. The Phillippines had to provide an assurance that the confiscation or repayment of the assets in question would be handled through judicial proceedings that complied with the principles of the International Civil and Political Rights Pact, and the Phillippine government also had to undertake to brief the Swiss authorities regularly on the judicial confiscation and repayment proceedings, as well as on the precautions and procedures pertaining to compensation for victims of violations of human rights under the Marcos regime. /  No further decision required from Swiss authorities / Once the Federal Office of Justice (at the time: the Federal Office of Police Matters) had declared the guarantee given by the Phillippines to be satisfactory and the Swiss Federal Supreme Court had dismissed appeals against the ruling, the assets could be transferred in 1998 to a escrow account with the Phillippine National Bank in Manila. Following the confiscation ruling of the Phillippine Supreme Court on 15 July 2003, which confirmed the view of the Swiss Federal Supreme Court with regard to the criminal origin of the monies seized, the Phillippine government may now dispose of the assets, worth some USD 683 million. No further decisions are due on the part of the Swiss authorities. The Phillippine parliament is currently debating legislation under which the Marcos assets would be used for land reform and to compensate the victims of human rights violations." (Source: Federal Office of Justice Press Release, "Philippines given access to over USD 683 million / Confiscation ruling closes Marcos case," August 5, 2003.)
 
Following the August 2012 Singapore Court decision (and in New York in the Arelma Deposit case), the PCGG stated, "Considering these positive de-velopments in 2012, the Commission decided to remit a portion of the [Contingency/Litigation] Fund – specifically US$10 mil-lion or PhP422.83 million – to the Bureau of the Treasury. (Source: PCGG Annual Report 2012)
Contributing Factors in Asset Recovery: 
First case under the Federal Act on International Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters (IMAC) enacted in January 1983 (Source: Stolen Asset Recovery Initiative Case Study, "Ferdinand Marcos"; Voluntary reporting of Marcos assets by Swiss banks immediately after the Marcoses fled the Philippines which led to automatic freezing of the reported funds; International Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters (Switzerland) (Source: Jovito R. Salonga, Presidential Plunder: The Quest for the Marcos Ill-Gotten Wealth (Regina Publishing, 2000).
Agreement / Arrangement re: Returned Assets?: 
Yes
Agreement / Arrangment re: Returned Assets (Explanation): 
Monies returned from Switzerland were to be used for the Agrarian Reform Fund and to establish a human rights victims fund; Responsibility for monitoring was placed with the Committee on Audit of the Republic of the Philippines. (Source: Republic of the Philippines, Commission on Audit, Management Services Report No. 2006-01, "Utilization of the Forfeited Swiss Deposits for the Implementation of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP)).
Basis for Intl Cooperation Mechanism: 
International Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters
Investigating Agency (JO): 
Presidential Commission on Good Government
ProsecAuth/Civil Atty (JO): 
Presidential Commission on Good Government
Courts Involved (JO): 
Sandiganbayan; Supreme Court of the Republic of the Philippines
Investigative Agency (JAR): 
Federal Office of Justice
ProsecAuth/Civil Atty (JAR): 
Unspecified
Courts Involved (JAR): 
Federal Supreme Court
Sources : 
Merceditas Gutierrez, Ombudsman, Republic of the Philippines, "Ferdinand E. Marcos (Philippines): A Case Study," in ADB/OECD Anti-Corruption Initiative for Asia and the Pacific, Asset Recovery and Mutual Legal Assistance in Asia and the Pacific, Proceedings of the 6th Regional Seminar on Making International Anti-Corruption Standards Operational (Bali, 5-7 September 2007), accessed at http://www.adb.org/Documents/Books/Asset-Recovery/Asset-Recovery.pdf; Swiss federal court decisions, including 125 II 411 (1999 decision on Marcos case and request for judicial assistance by Philippines), as contained in assetrecovery.org case study on Marcos; Swiss Federal Office of Justice Press Releases including, "Philippines given access to over USD 683 million," August 5, 2003, at http://www.ejpd.admin.ch/content/ejpd/en/home/dokumentation/mi/2003/ref_... Republic of the Philippines v. Sandiganbayan, Ferdinand E. Marcos, and others, Republic of the Phillippines Supreme Court. G.R. No. 152154, Judgment of July 15, 2003 (Supreme Court of the Republic of Philippines decisions can be accessed at: http://www.worldlii.org/ph/); please see also case study by Professor Leonor Briones, in "Stolen Asset Recovery (StAR) Initiative: Challenges, Opportunities, and Action Plan," at 21; Jovito R. Salonga, Presidential Plunder: the Quest for the Marcos Ill-Gotten Wealth (U.P. Center for Leadership, Citizenship and Democracy & Regina Publishing Co. 2000); PCGG Annual Report 2012; 
 
Sophia Regina M. Dedace, "Imelda Marcos and her road to vindication," GMA News, April 21, 2010, accessed at http://www.gmanews.tv/story/188960/imelda-marcos-and-her-road-to-vindica....