Disgraced Philippines ex-leader Estrada plans to name 'plotters'

(AFP) - Disgraced former Philippine president Joseph Estrada said Monday he is writing a book about his life and plans to name prominent officials he claims conspired against him.

Estrada, 70, was released two months ago from prison where he had been serving a life sentence for corruption, after being granted a pardon by his arch enemy and successor, President Gloria Arroyo.

Estrada told ABS-CBN television that the nation's powerbrokers had conspired to bring original corruption charges against him because they could not accept an outsider was running the country.

"I will reveal how big business, politicians and military officials conspired against me," said Estrada, a former action movie star, who cultivated an image of the everyday man and remains hugely popular.

"They conspired with personalities from other sectors when they failed to obtain government favours for their businesses," he said, refusing to name the alleged conspirators.

"The book will describe how they ganged up against me."

He said the book should be in print "before the end of the year."

Estrada, who has said he is finished with politics, told AFP last week that he was planning a return to the silver screen, this time starring in a comedy.

In 1998 he won the presidency by the biggest margin in Philippine history. Allegations of incompetence and massive corruption however led to his impeachment 30 months into office, and subsequently to his ouster in a military-backed bloodless popular revolt.

In April 2000 he became the first president to be booked and detained like a common criminal.

His six-year trial ended last September, when he was convicted and sentenced for illegally amassing about 80 million dollars through embezzlement, kickbacks and payoffs from operators of an illegal lottery.

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