Philippines’ Arroyo Transferred to Military Hospital

Posted December 9th, 2011 at 7:30 am (UTC-5)
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Former Philippine President Gloria Arroyo was transferred Friday from a private hospital to a military medical facility to await trial on charges of rigging the country's 2007 senatorial elections.

The 64-year-old Ms. Arroyo has been under guard since being arrested last month in her hospital room where she was receiving treatment for a bone disease.

In an interview broadcasted Friday, Ms. Arroyo said her “conscience is clear,” and that the electoral fraud charges against her were made up in order to boost the popularity of her successor, President Benigno Aquino.

The former leader, now a member of congress, stepped down from the presidency last year. She has long been accused of corruption during her time in power from 2001 to 2010.

She will be the second former Philippine leader to face trial. Her ousted predecessor, Joseph Estrada, was sentenced to life in prison for corruption, but she later pardoned him.

Ms. Arroyo was taken Friday to the same presidential suite at the military hospital where Mr. Estrada spent three years in confinement.

She and her husband are also being investigated for alleged corruption involving government contracts.

If convicted, she could face life in prison. She denies any wrongdoing.