Instant Millionaire: Man Who Found ₱7.8M Old Money in Ex-Erap Tagaytay House on June Joyful after BSP Extends Deadline for Exchanging Old Peso Banknotes

If there are tens of thousands of Filipinos delighted after the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) announced that it will extend the deadline for exchanging the old banknotes until December 29, there could be no happier than Mauricio Persincula.

As reported earlier on May 17, 2016, Persincula, a handyman from Talisay, Batangas, was hired by a Balikbayan in Tagaytay City to clean the house she was newly purchased.

The house was previously owned by former President and now Manila Mayor Joseph “Erap” Estrada for 12 years, and served as his retreat house during the short time of his presidency.

Persincula, together with his oldest son, found a box full of money and casino chips at the basement. He then turned-over the money to the new house owner, but knowing the money is no longer allowed in circulation, and no longer accepted by the banks, the owner told him to keep it, which he did in frustration.

The disgruntled worker contacted many banks but after several months, he gave-up and almost burn the money

On Friday, BSP set a new deadline for exchanging old banknotes for the new generation currency (NGC) series due to public demand.

“In response to numerous requests from the general public to allow the exchange and replacement of their New Design Series (NDS) banknotes, the Monetary Board established a new deadline of 29 December 2017 for this purpose,” the BSP said in a statement.

The replacement or exchange transactions of NDS banknotes will be accommodated without charge at the BSP Cash Department, regional offices, and branches.

“The BSP shall allow the exchange of demonetized NDS banknotes in cash to a maximum amount of ₱100,000.00 per transaction,” it said.

“NDS exchange for larger amounts may be allowed but payable only by check or direct credit to a bank account,” it added.

Although the BSP sets limit of ₱100,000 per transaction, Persincula said he is still happy that he can exchange the cash even if it will take tremendous amount of exchange works. With ₱7.8 million cash in hand, he is expected to transact 78 times with the BSP regional office, but also said that his family will divide the labor in different BSP offices.

Persincula said aside from the new house owner who gave him the “unusable money”, no one had claimed the dais cache. Mr. Estrada refused to comment during the time the money was found, although some checks bearing his name and Jose Velarde were also found together with the money and casino chips.

Most of the money in different denominations are believed to be newly-printed and has never used in circulation based on its condition. It was issued by Equitable-PCI based on marks. The bank is now owned called BDO./Joy Valle/

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