Former First Lady Imelda Marcos (Source: Reuters)

Hanoi (VNA) – An anti-corruption court of the Philippines on November 9 issued an arrest order to former First Lady Imelda Marcos after she was found guilty on seven counts of graft during the period that her husband Ferdinand Marcos was in office from 1965 to 1986.

The Sandiganbayan court sentenced Imelda Marcos, 89, to six to 11 years in prison for each count of violating an anti-corruption law when she illegally funneled about 200 million USD to Swiss foundations in the 1970s as Metropolitan Manila governor.

The ruling also permanently disqualified Imelda Marcos — a congresswoman who is running for Ilocos Norte governor in the 2019 elections — from holding public office.

Neither Imelda Marcos nor any of her lawyers were present during the promulgation of the decision.

Imelda Marcos, famous for a huge collection of shoes, jewelry and artwork, is facing dozens of protracted graft cases that have hounded her since her family was toppled in an army-backed popular uprising in 1986.

The court's decision came nearly three decades after the case was filed.

Under the rules of the Sandiganbayan, the former first lady has 15 days from promulgation of the ruling to file an appeal, and the anti-graft court has 30 days within which to decide on it. Marcos may also go straight to Supreme Court to seek relief. She can also file an application for bail.

Ferdinand Marcos ruled the Philippines for two decades, placing the country under martial law in 1972, during which time thousands of opponents were jailed, killed or disappeared.

He was accused of amassing more than 10 billion USD while in office and died in exile in 1989.-VNA