‘I’m scared for my life’ – Peter Lim

Peter Lim grants a short interview to reporters at his office in Hilton Motors in Mandaue City. Although he appeared calm, the Chinese-Filipino businessman said he fears for his life.

CEBU CITY – “I’m scared for my life.”

Cebu businessman Peter Lim on Thursday expressed concerns about his safety after a case was filed against him over his alleged involvement in the illegal drugs trade.

“Yes I am scared. Because of the false accusations against me, people might think it’s true,” he told reporters in a short interview at Hilton Motors, a heavy equipment company he owned in Barangay Subangdaku, Mandaue City.

Although he was anxious of what might happen to him, the 70-year-old businessman vowed not to run away and to face the case head on.

“You know, it’s not easy to be accused of something you have never done. (But) I will answer whatever allegations. I have to face the case,” he said.

Lim was publicly named by President Rodrigo Duterte as one of the country’s biggest drug lord.

He was also identified by self-confessed drug lord Kerwin Espinosa as one of his suppliers of shabu (crystal meth).

The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) filed a case against Lim, Espinosa and six others for alleged conspiracy to commit “sale, trading, administration, dispensation, delivery, distribution, and transportation of dangerous drugs and/or controlled precursors and essential chemicals.”

The criminal conspiracy, the CIDG said, continuously existed in various places of Makati City, Central and Eastern Visayas from February 2013 to August 2015 at the very least.

The Department of Justice has mandated Lim to attend the preliminary investigation set on Aug. 14 and 17.

The Chinese-Filipino businessman has repeatedly denied the accusations hurled against him.
“It’s a big lie and is fabricated. The allegations are not true. I’ve never been in that kind of business, and I will never be in that kind of business,” Lim said.
He said he welcomed the preliminary investigation conducted by the Department of Justice (DOJ) if only to clear his name.
“I’m happy that we’re given the opportunity. Finally, I can clear my name,” he said.

Asked if he would request for police escorts to quell possible threats to his life, Lim said “I don’t think the police will give me escorts.”

“Poor me. I can’t request for it. If I can, I will, but poor me cannot have police escorts,” he added. Lim said he and his family are badly affected by the accusations leveled against him.

“All of them are worried. My children and grandchildren are affected. My health is also not good. I have a kidney (ailment), and I am not fully well yet,” he said.

Lim’s daughter Caryl expressed hopes that his father would eventually be cleared of the allegations.

“Our family welcomes the DOJ’s investigation. We are grateful of our father’s opportunity to finally clear his name from these malicious and false accusations,” she said in a statement.

Caryl, one of Lim’s 10 children, said his father is never involved in illegal drugs.

“We cannot express how deeply affected we are by the reports that unfairly molded the public’s perception that our father is a drug lord. We appeal to our fellow citizens and friends. Please reserve your judgement against our father,” she said.

Lim’s Manila-based lawyers Francis Alex Lopez and Miguel Gabionza allowed the media to inspect the businessman’s office and workplace.

They said they want to prove that Lim “is not hiding anything.”

Aside from Lim and Espinosa, also facing a complaint at the DOJ were convicted drug lord Peter Co, alleged drug supplier Lovely Adam Impal, Marcelo Adorco, Max Miro, Ruel Malindangan and Jun Pepito.]