Cavite’s favorite son relies on family in times of difficult challenge

Former Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla, Jr. graciously brushed off questions relevant to his almost five-year incarceration at PNP Custodial Center, and about Ombudsman prosecutors running after him to return to the national treasury an amount of money they said he plundered through the pork barrel scam. 

Cavite’s favorite son relies on family in times of difficult challenge
A recent family portrait of Bong Revilla and Lani Mercado and their children  ​
“I’m not guilty. That’s why I’m here as a freeman,” Revilla told the entertainment press in a gathering at a restaurant in Quezon City on Chinese New Year.

“The court has spoken and it’s clear that I did not receive any amount. What money will I return? Kung may pera akong dapat ibalik dapat nila akong ikulong ulit. Why am I here, why did they let me free? Because I’m innocent,” he continued and stressed that he wanted now to move on and let those kinds of talks be discussed at proper forum. 

The action star talked about his family instead, how his wife, children and siblings became much closer and their ties more intact when they were bombarded by numerous allegations and name-callings.

“We here bashed and bullied, pero iisa ang puso namin. My mom thought us this family member’s problem is the problem of the entire family. That’s the training I give my children, too. Ang problema ng isa ay problema ng lahat,” shared the 52-year-old Revilla.

While at Camp Crame, he tried to focus on getting in shape. He exercised daily and even played badminton when it was still allowed.

Cavite’s favorite son relies on family in times of difficult challenge
Bong Revilla regards showbiz as his first love 
“Imagine, I do a thousand sit-ups every day because I had nothing to do,” he said when a TV reporter asked what kept him looking young and fit.

Revilla also shared that he channeled his energy into writing stories meant for big screen projects. In fact, he’s written five stories, one of which is being developed into a film meant for 2019 release.

“Everybody knows that show business is my first love. I wouldn’t be here if not for the continued support of the people in the industry. So, when I get questions like ‘Why do you still want to run for public office if your heart belongs to movie-making and appearing on TV?’ Well, it’s my bread and butter. That’s why I can explain where my money came from. Running for a government post is my way of giving back to my fans and to the people that need assistance,” he affirmed.

Since his released, Revilla said that he has been visiting a few provinces through his “Pasasalamat Caravan.” He’s touched based with NGOs and other private sectors through various speaking engagements. 

“I will continue projects that I had planned before Crame and regarding the movie, I will sure make one but it would have to wait first since we’re focusing on the elections right now,” Revilla said. 

He wants to join the next Metro Manila Film Fest this coming December. Although a teaser for a new movie called “Alayas Pogi 2019” was shown during his meeting with the entertainment press, he said things may still change. 

* * *

The fastest way to American Green Card

It’s citizenship by investment. That’s the easiest way to explain what an EB-5 visa is all about. It is considered as the fastest way option in acquiring permanent residence status, with no quota backlogs, in the United States.

With some select members of local press, we had a dinner from a group from the US that discussed this residency option.

“There are 10 thousand EB-5 visas and no country can take more than 7 percent of those visas,” Nicolai Hinrichsen, senior attorney with the Miller Mayer LLP and managing partner of its Asia EB-5 practice, said during a presentation.

“China is the driver for EB-5 program due to its overwhelming success among Chinese investors. Surprisingly, this visa option is popular among Indians and Vietnamese. In the Philippines, we could hardly hear Filipinos applying for it,” he added.


Hinrichsen has over a decade of experience in EB-5 immigration. He represents individual investors in obtaining permanent resident status through either regional center or direct EB-5 investments.

He was recently recognized by EB-5 Investor Magazine as one of the top 25 legal professionals in the field.

Explaining further the visa option, Hinrichsen said that the US Congress created the EB-5 Program in 1990 under the United States Immigration and Citizenship Services (USCIS) in order to stimulate the US economy through job creation and capital investment by foreign investors. In turn, the visa offers holders, including family members (spouse and unmarried children below 21), freedom to study, work, and live in the US without additional immigration requirements.

An ideal window to acquire the EB-5 visa is being offered by New York-based Lightstone Investments to interested parties. All it takes is a minimum investment of $500,000 with an eye in opening up job opportunities for those residing in the United States.

Lightstone is one of the largest privately held real estate companies in the United States with $6 billion in assets under management and development.

The company is headquartered in New York City and has holdings in 28 states. It owns over 15,000 apartments throughout the US. Over $1.6 billion has been invested by more than 18,000 investors in real estate investment funds managed by Lightstone.

Topics: Ramon “Bong” Revilla , Nicolai Hinrichsen , Metro Manila Film Fest , EB-5 , Lightstone
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