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Jurisdiction

Jurisdiction
Section 32. Jurisdiction of Metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Trial Courts and Municipal Circuit Trial Courts in criminal cases. Except in cases falling within the exclusive original jurisdiction of Regional Trial Courts and of the Sandiganbayan, the Metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Trial Courts, and Municipal Circuit Trial Courts shall exercise: (1) Exclusive original jurisdiction over all violations of city or municipal ordinances committed within their respective territorial jurisdiction; and (2) Exclusive original jurisdiction over all offenses punishable with imprisonment not exceeding six (6) years irrespective of the amount of fine, and regardless of other imposable accessory or other penalties, including the civil liability arising from such offenses or predicated thereon, irrespective of kind, nature, value, or amount thereof: Provided, however, That in offenses involving damage to property through criminal negligence they shall have exclusive original jurisdiction thereof. (as amended by R.A, No. 7691) ADMINISTRATIVE CIRCULAR NO. 09-94 June 14, 1994 TO: THE COURT OF APPEALS, SANDIGANBAYAN, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, METROPOLITAN TRIAL COURTS, METROPOLITAN TRIAL COURTS, MUNICIPAL TRIAL COURTS, MUNICIPAL CIRCUIT TRIAL COURT, ALL MEMBERS OF THE GOVERNMENT PROSECUTION SERVICE AND ALL MEMBERS OF THE INTEGRATED BAR OF THE PHILIPPINES SUBJECT: GUIDELINES IN THE IMPLEMENTATION OF REPUBLIC ACT NO. 7691. ENTITLED "AN ACT EXPANDING THE JURISDICTION OF THE METROPOLITAN TRIAL COURTS, MUNICIPAL TRIAL COURTS AND MUNICIPAL TRIAL COURTS AND MUNICIPAL CIRCUIT TRIAL COURTS, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE BATAS PAMBANSA BLG. 129, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS THE 'JUDICIARY REORGANIZATION ACT OF 1980." For the guidance of the bench and the Bar, the following guidelines are to be followed in the implementation of Republic Act No. 7691, entitled "An Act Expanding the Jurisdiction of the Metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Trial Courts, and Municipal Circuit Trial Courts, Amending for the Purpose Batas Pambansa Blg. 129, Otherwise Known as the 'Judiciary Reorganization Act of 1980": 1. The new jurisdiction of the Regional Trial Courts, Metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Trial Courts, and Municipal Circuit Trial Courts in civil and original cases, and in cadastral and land registration cases, under Section 19, 32, 33 and 34 of B.P. Blg. 129, as amended by R.A. No. 7691. Was effective on April 15, 1994, fifteen (15) Syllabus days after the publication in 1 in Criminal Procedure the Malaya and in the Times Journal on March 30, 1994, pursuant to Section 8 of the R.A. No. 7691. 2. The exclusion of the term "damages of whatever kind" in determining

Jurisdiction

Section 19, 32, 33 and 34 of B.P. Blg. 129, as amended by R.A. No. 7691. Was effective on April 15, 1994, fifteen (15) days after the publication in the Malaya and in the Times Journal on March 30, 1994, pursuant to Section 8 of the R.A. No. 7691. 2. The exclusion of the term "damages of whatever kind" in determining the jurisdictional amount under Section 19 (8) and Section 33 (1) of B.P. Blg. 129, as amended by R.A. No. 7691, applies to cases where the damages are merely incidental to or a consequence of the main cause of action. However, in cases where the claim for damages is the main cause of action, or one of the causes of action, the amount of such claim shall be considered in determining the jurisdiction of the court. 3. The criminal jurisdiction of the Metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Trial Courts, and Municipal Trial Courts under Section 32 (2) of B.P. Blg. 129, as amended by R.A. No. 7691, has been increased to cover offenses punishable with imprisonment not exceeding six (6) years irrespective of the amount of the fine. As a consequence, the Regional Trial Courts have no more original jurisdiction over offenses committed by public officers and employees in relation to their office, where the offense is punishable by more than four (4) years and two (2) months up to six (6) years. 4. The provisions of Section 32 (2) of B.P. 129 as amended by R.A. No. 7691, apply only to offenses punishable by imprisonment or fine, or both, in which cases the amount of the fine is disregarded in determining the jurisdiction of the court. However, in cases where the only penalty provided by law is a fine, the amount thereof shall determine the jurisdiction of the court in accordance with the original provisions of Section 32 (2) of B.P. Blg. 129 which fixed original exclusive jurisdiction of the Metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Trial Courts, and Municipal Circuit Trial Courts over offenses punishable with a fine of not more than four thousand pesos. If the amount of the fine exceeds four thousand pesos, the Regional Trial Court shall have jurisdiction, including offenses committed by public officers and employees in relation to their office, where the amount of the fine does not exceed six thousand pesos. However, this rule does not apply to offenses involving damage to property through criminal negligence which are under the exclusive original jurisdiction of the Metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Trial Courts, and Municipal Circuit Trial Courts, irrespective of the amount of the imposable fine.

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G.R. No. 123263 December 16, 1996 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. METROPOLITAN TRIAL COURT OF QUEZON CITY, Branch 32, and ISAH V. RED, respondents. Facts: Information for libel was filed against Isah V. Red in the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. Red filed a motion to quash the information on the ground that the RTC had no jurisdiction of the offense. The judge remanded the case to the Metropolitan Trial Court of Quezon City "for proper action/disposition in the premises." Thereafter, the private prosecutor, "under the control and supervision of the Fiscal," filed a "Manifestation and Motion to remand" dated August 1, 1995 praying that the case be returned to the RTC. The movant invoked Article 360 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended, which pertinently provides that: xxx xxx xxx The criminal action and civil action for damages in case of written defamation, as provided for in this chapter, shall be filed simultaneously or separately with the Court of First Instance of the province or city where the libelous article is printed and first published or where any of the offended parties actually resides at the time of the commission of the offense xxx" The Metro TC denied the motion by Order dated August 14, 1995. It opined that "Rep. Act No. 7691, which took effect on April 15, 1994, would partake of the nature of a 'modern' law which impliedly repeals an 'ancient' law (the Revised Penal Code) which is of 1932 vintage, which is inconsistent with the later law . .; (and that) if the repeal makes the penalty lighter in the new law, the new law shall be applied." 2 Later, the MetroTC also denied the private prosecutor's motion for reconsideration, by Order dated September 7, 1995. Still later, in an Order dated October 18, 1995, it denied another motion by the same counsel reiterating the plea to remand the case back to the RTC, and further directed "the prosecution to present . . (its) next witness," trial having in the meantime commenced. In the present petition, the State prays for judgment: " declaring the questioned Orders dated August 14, 1995, September 7, 1995, and October 18, 1995 as null and void for having been issued by the respondent court acting without jurisdiction; Issue: Whether it is the Regional Trial Court, or the Metropolitan Trial Court or other first level court which has exclusive original jurisdiction over criminal actions of libel Ruling: Under the R.A. No. 7691 divested the Regional Trial Courts of jurisdiction to try libel cases cannot be sustained. While libel is punishable by imprisonment of six months and one day to four years and two months (Art. 360, Revised Penal Code) which imposable penalty is lodged within the Municipal Trial Courts' jurisdiction under R.A. No. 7691 (Sec. 32 [21]), said law, however, excludes therefrom ". . cases falling within the exclusive original jurisdiction of the Regional Trial Courts . . ."

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WHEREFORE, the petition is granted; the respondent Court's Orders dated August 14, 1995, September 7, 1995, and October 18, 1995 are declared null and void for having been issued without jurisdiction; and said Court is enjoined from further taking cognizance of and proceeding with Criminal Case No. 43-00548, which it is commanded to remand to the Executive Judge of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City for proper disposition. In the case of Lydia Caro vs. Court of Appeals and Violeta Sarigumba, , involving the same jurisdictional issue as that specifically presented in the case at bar, this Court promulgated a Resolution on June 19, 1996 pertinently reading as follows: Anent the question of jurisdiction, we . . find no reversible error committed by public respondent Court of Appeals in denying petitioner's motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction. The contention . . that R.A. No. 7691 divested the Regional Trial Courts of jurisdiction to try libel cases cannot be sustained. While libel is punishable by imprisonment of six months and one day to four years and two months (Art. 360, Revised Penal Code) which imposable penalty is lodged within the Municipal Trial Courts' jurisdiction under R.A. No. 7691 (Sec. 32 [21]), said law, however, excludes therefrom ". . cases falling within the exclusive original jurisdiction of the Regional Trial Courts . . ." The Court in Bocobo vs.Estanislao, 72 SCRA 520 and Jalandoni vs. Endaya, 55 SCRA 261, correctly cited by the Court of Appeals, has laid down the rule that Regional Trial Courts have the exclusive jurisdiction over libel cases, hence, the expanded jurisdiction conferred by R.A. 7691 to inferior courts cannot be applied to libel cases. G.R. No. 115115 July 18, 1995 CONRAD AND COMPANY, INC., petitioner, vs. HON. COURT OF APPEALS, FITRITE INC., and VICTORIA BISCUITS CO., INC., respondents. Facts: FITRITE, INC. and VICTORIA BISCUIT CO., INC entered into an agreement allowing Victoria Biscuit co., inc. to use the trademark of FITRITE, Sunshine which was a lso using by CONRAD. FITRITE then filed against CONRAD of infringement. In seeking the dismissal of the complaint filed by private respondents with the trial court, petitioner invoked, among other grounds, litis pendentia, the doctrine of primary jurisdiction and failure to state a cause of action. The trial court, agreeing with petitioner, granted the motion to dismiss the complaint. Defendant having been granted distributorship by Sunshine Biscuits USA over Philippine territory it follows that the resolution of the issue with respect to the ownership of Sunshine Biscuits which is the basis of plaintiffs' claim is lodged under the exclusive jurisdiction of the BPTTT. . It cannot also be denied that there is another action pending between the same parties for the same cause. Plaintiffs, therefore, should not have filed this case with this court. It must, therefore, be summarily dismissed. The ground of litis pendentia is no doubt meritorious. The doctrine of primary jurisdiction should be made to apply in this case considering that the BPTTT had already acquired jurisdiction over the suit brought by defendant's principal against the plaintiffs involving the right of plaintiffs to
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use said trademark. No doubt the BPTTT is better situated, considering its experience and special knowledge to determine the matters of fact involved. Indeed, the rulings laid down by the Supreme Court on the point are along this trend. Private respondents brought the case to the Court of Appeals which reveres the decision of the lower court ordering that the lower court to proceed with the action a quo, although for a good cause shown the lower court, in its sound discretion, may suspend the action pending outcome of the cancellation proceeding between Sunshine Biscuits, Inc. and Fitrite, Inc. in Inter Partes Case No. 3397 before BPTTT, subject to the condition that the Conrad and Company, Inc. to desist and refrain from importing, manufacturing, selling and distributing in the Philippines any goods bearing the trademark "SUNSHINE & DEVICE LABEL" registered in FITRITE's name pending final decision in the action a quo, it being understood that this order, to effect such desistance and enjoin defendant-appellee from the aforesaid activities, shall be considered as the Writ of Injunction itself and an integral part of this Amended Decision. Hence the present petition. Issue: Whether or not the Court of Appeals committed reversible error in allowing the trial court to proceed with the case for "injunction with damages" filed by private respondents notwithstanding the pendency of an administrative case for the cancellation of the former's trademark filed by supposedly "petitioner's principal" with the Bureau of Patents, Trademarks and Technology Transfer ("BPTTT"); Ruling: Surely, an application with BPTTT for an administrative cancellation of a registered trade mark cannot per se have the effect of restraining or preventing the courts from the exercise of their lawfully conferred jurisdiction. A contrary rule would unduly expand the doctrine of primary jurisdiction which, simply expressed, would merely behoove regular courts, in controversies involving specialized disputes, to defer to the findings of resolutions of administrative tribunals on certain technical matters. This rule, evidently, did not escape the appellate court for it likewise decreed that for "good cause shown, the lower court, in its sound discretion, may suspend the action pending outcome of the cancellation proceedings" before BPTTT. Needless to say, we cannot at this stage delve into the merits of the cancellation case. In this instance, the sole concern, outside of the jurisdictional aspect of the petition hereinbefore discussed, would be that which focuses on the propriety of the injunction order of the appellate court. The appellate court's finding that there is an urgent necessity for the issuance of the writ of preliminary injunction pending resolution by BPTTT of the petition for cancellation filed by Sunshine USA in Inter Partes Case No. 3397 would indeed appear to have merit. The allegations of the complaint, perforced hypothetically deemed admitted by petitioner, would here justify the issuance by appellate court of its injunction order.

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G.R. No. 169004 September 15, 2010 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. SANDIGANBAYAN and ROLANDO PLAZA, respondents. Facts: Respondent Rolando Plaza, a member of the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Toledo City, Cebu, at the time relevant to this case, with salary grade 25, had been charged in the Sandiganbayan with violation of Section 89 of Presidential Decree (P.D.) No. 1445, or The Auditing Code of the Philippines for his failure to liquidate the cash advances he received on December 19, 1995 in the amount of Thirty-Three Thousand Pesos (P33, 000.00). Thereafter, Rolando Plaza filed a Motion to Dismiss the information with the Sandiganbayan, to which the latter issued an Order, directing petitioner to submit its comment. Petitioner filed its Opposition to the Motion to Dismiss. Eventually, the Sandiganbayan promulgated its Resolution on dismissing the case for lack of jurisdiction, without prejudice to its filing before the proper court. Hence, the present petition of the petitioner contending that the Sandiganbayan has criminal jurisdiction over cases involving public officials and employees enumerated under Section 4 (a) (1) of P.D. 1606, (as amended by Republic Act [R.A.] Nos. 7975 and 8249), whether or not occupying a position classified under salary grade 27 and above. Issue: Whether or not the Sandiganbayan has jurisdiction over a member of the Sangguniang Panlungsod whose salary grade is below 27 and charged with violation of The Auditing Code of the Philippines. Ruling: Those that are classified as Grade 26 and below may still fall within the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan provided that they hold the positions thus enumerated by the same law. Particularly and exclusively enumerated are provincial governors, vice-govenors, members of the sangguniang panlalawigan, and provincial treasurers, assessors, engineers, and other provincial department heads; city mayors, vice-mayors, members of the sangguniang panlungsod, city treasurers, assessors, engineers, and other city department heads; officials of the diplomatic service occupying the position as consul and higher; Philippine army and air force colonels, naval captains, and all officers of higher rank; PNP chief superintendent and PNP officers of higher rank; City and provincial prosecutors and their assistants, and officials and prosecutors in the Office of the Ombudsman and special prosecutor; and presidents, directors or trustees, or managers of government-owned or controlled corporations, state universities or educational institutions or foundations. In connection therewith, Section 4 (b) of the same law provides that other offenses or felonies committed by public officials and employees mentioned in subsection (a) in relation to their office also fall under the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan.

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Clearly, respondent Plaza, a member of the Sangguniang Panlungsod during the alleged commission of an offense in relation to his office, necessarily falls within the original jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan. In the offenses involved in Section 4 (a), it is not disputed that public office is essential as an element of the said offenses themselves, while in those offenses and felonies involved in Section 4 (b), it is enough that the said offenses and felonies were committed in relation to the public officials or employees' office. In expounding the meaning of offenses deemed to have been committed in relation to office. G.R. No. L-14595 May 31, 1960 THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. HONORABLE GREGORIO MONTEJO et al.respondents. Facts: Respondents were charged of murder. In the first information Mayor Brown was not included, however there was an amendment made which include Brown as one of the accused in the said criminal action, since he was the one who organized groups of police patrol and civilian commandoes", consisting of regular and special policemen, whom he "armed with pistols and high power guns". Yokan Awalin Tebag was arrested by order of Mayor Brown, without any warrant or complaint filed in court, and then brought to, and detained in, the aforementioned sub-station; that while on the way thereto, said Awalin Tebag was maltreated and eventually died. During the trial of said criminal case, respondent Judge rejected some of the evidence for the prosecution therein and not permitting the same to propound certain questions. Issue: Whether or not such offense committed are in relation to their public office which therefore falls under the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan Whether or not the case falls under the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan since the offender is a public officer (official) Ruling: A mere perusal of the amended information therein readily elicits an affirmative answer. It is alleged in said amended information that "Leroy S. Brown, City Mayor of Basilan City, as such, has organized groups of police patrol and civilian commandoes consisting of regular policemen and ... special policemen, appointed and provided by him with pistols and high power guns" and then "established a camp ... at Tipo-Tipo," which is under his "command, ... supervision and control," where his codefendants were stationed, entertained criminal complaints and conducted the corresponding investigations, as well as assumed the authority to arrest and detain persons without due process of law and without bringing them to the proper court, and that, in line with this set-up established by said Mayor of Basilan City as such, and acting upon his orders, his codefendants arrested and maltreated Awalin Tebag, who died in consequence thereof.
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It is apparent from these allegations that, although public office is not an element of the crime of murder in abstract, as committed by the main respondents herein, according to the amended information, the offense therein charged is intimately connected with their respective offices and was perpetrated while they were in the performance, though improper or irregular, of their official functions. Indeed, they had no personal motive to commit the crime and they would not have committed it had they not held their aforesaid offices. The co-defendants of respondent Leroy S. Brown, obeyed his instructions because he was their superior officer, as Mayor of Basilan City. Crime committed is in relation to his office. It was perpetrated while they were in the performance, though improper or irregular, of their official functions and would not have been committed had they not held their office; Note: there was (a) an intimate connection between the offense charged and the public position of the accused and (b) a total absence of personal motive- which will render the case under Sandiganbayan.

G.R. Nos. 118013-14 October 11, 1995 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. HON. DEMOSTHENES L. MAGALLANES, as Presiding Judge of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 54, Bacolod City, and P/COL. NICOLAS M. TORRES, P/INSP. ADONIS C. ABETO, PO MARIO LAMIS Y FERNANDEZ, PO JOSE PAHAYUPAN, PO VICENTE CANUDAY, JR., JEANETTE YANSON-DUMANCAS, CHARLES DUMANCAS, DOMINADOR GEROCHE Y MAHUSAY, JAIME GARGALLANO, ROLANDO R. FERNANDEZ, EDWIN DIVINAGRACIA, TEODY DELGADO, CESAR PECHA, and EDGAR HILADO, respondents. Facts: On 13 January 1994, two information(s) for kidnapping for ransom with murder were filed with the RTC of Bacolod City against fourteen persons, five of whom are members of the PNP and was filed to the RTC of Bacolod City. Each of the accused pleaded not guilty upon arraignment. Later, they filed their respective motions for bail. At the hearings thereof, the prosecution presented state witness. After the completion of his testimony, the trial court, per Judge Edgar G. Garvilles, granted bail in favor of only six of the accused, the other eight accused that were denied bail are now detained at the City Jail of Bacolod City. On 24 June 1994, the private prosecutors moved for the transmittal of the records of the cases to the Sandiganbayan on the ground that, (pursuant to our decision of 11 March 1994 in Republic of the Philippines vs. Asuncion,) the trial court has no jurisdiction over the cases because the offenses charged were committed in relation to the office of the accused PNP officers. The trial court, thru respondent Judge, ruled that the Sandiganbayan does not have jurisdiction over the subject cases because the informations do not state that the offenses were committed in relation to the office of the accused PNP officers and declared that the trial of the case should continue. Hence, the present petition.
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Issue: Whether it is the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Bacolod City or the Sandiganbayan that has jurisdiction over the two criminal cases for kidnapping for ransom with murder wherein some of the accused implicated as principals are members of the Philippine National Police (PNP). Ruling: It is an elementary rule that jurisdiction is determined by the allegations in the complaint or information, and not by the result of evidence after trial. The in the court below do not indicate that the accused arrested and investigated the victims and then killed the latter in the course of the investigation. For the purpose of determining jurisdiction, it is these allegations that shall control, and not the evidence presented by the prosecution at the trial. The allegation of "taking advantage of his position" or "taking advantage of their respective positions" incorporated in the informations is not sufficient to bring the offenses within the definition of "offenses committed in relation to public office." In Montilla vs. Hilario, such an allegation was considered merely as an allegation of an aggravating circumstance, and not as one that qualifies the crime as having been committed in relation to public office. Accordingly, for lack of an allegation in the informations that the offenses were committed in relation to the office of the accused PNP officers or were intimately connected with the discharge of the functions of the accused, the subject cases come within the jurisdiction of the Regional Trial Court and not of the Sandiganbayan as insisted by the petitioner. G.R. No. L-64548 July 7, 1986 ROLANDO P. BARTOLOME, petitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, and HONORABLE SANDIGANBAYAN, respondents. Facts: Rolando Bartolome Y Perez, a public officer having been duly appointed and qualified as Senior Labor Regulation Officer and Chief of the Labor Regulations Section, Ministry of Labor, National Capital Region, Manila, conspiring and conniving with the other accused ELINO CORONEL Y SANTOS, also a public officer having been duly appointed and qualified as Labor Regulation Officer of the same office, taking advantage of their official positions prepare and falsify an official document was charged and convicted under the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan. Petitioner contends that nowhere in either statute is falsification of an official document mentioned, even tangentially or by implication under the said law (Republic Act No. 3019 and Republic Act No. 1379).

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Issue:

Whether or not Sandiganbayan has jurisdiction over the present case

Ruling: In the instant case, there is no showing that the alleged falsification was committed by the accused, if at all, as a consequence of, and while they were discharging, official functions. The information does not allege that there was an intimate connection between the discharge of official duties and the commission of the offense. Besides, falsification of an official document may be committed not only by public officers and employees but even by private persons only. To paraphrase Montilla, public office is not an essential ingredient of the offense such that the offense cannot exist without the office. Clearly, therefore, as the alleged falsification was not an offense committed in relation to the office of the accused, it did not come under the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan. It follows that all its acts in the instant case are null and void ab initio. WHEREFORE, the petitions are granted and the decision of the Sandiganbayan is set aside, without any pronouncement as to costs. It is so ordered. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. BIENVENIDO LEOPARTE alias "EMBEN", respondent. Facts: Appellant was charged with abduction with rape in an information. It was alleged that she was then returning home by the railroad tracks from the house of her brother when appellant suddenly pulled her by the right arm threatening that if she should shout, he would kill her. Appellant then allegedly succeeded in having sexual intercourse with her at the nearby banana plantation. She declared that appellant first fondled the different parts of her body, more particularly her bust, and kissed her several times. Then he opened her thighs, inserted his fingers and, later, his penis inside her vagina. She allegedly resisted the appellant, but the latter threatened to kill her with a pointed weapon if she would not surrender herself to him. After the alleged assault on her honor, appellant brought her to the house of his sister. Appellant's sister, his nephews and nieces were present. There, appellant had carnal knowledge of her three times, despite her resistance and her telling appellant not to do it because she was getting married to another man. However, appellant allegedly boxed her in the thigh and again threatened to kill her if she would not submit to his wishes. Thereafter, they left the house of appellant's sister and proceeded to the house of appellant's uncle which they stayed for two (2) days. There she was allegedly sexually abused by appellant three (3) more times. Then appellant and the offended party proceeded to the house of appellant's father, where appellant himself resided. The following day, her parents, accompanied by Philippine Constabulary soldiers, arrived and took her away and appellant was arrested.

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Issue:

Whether or not the trial court has jurisdiction over the case even it is not raised during the trial. Ruling: The complaint by the offended party provided for in Article 344 of the Revised Penal Code does not determine the jurisdiction of the courts over crimes against chastity but is only a condition precedent for the exercise by the proper authorities of the power to prosecute. The same not being jurisdictional, the failure of appellant to raise said issue at the trial court barred him from raising said issue on appeal, in consonance with Rule 117 of the Rules of Court, which reads: Sec. 8. Failure to move to quash or to allege any ground therefor. The failure of the accused to assert any ground of a motion to quash before he pleads to the complaint or information, either because he did not file a motion to quash or failed to allege the same in said motion, shall be deemed a waiver of the grounds of a motion to quash, except the grounds of no offense charged, lack of jurisdiction over the offense charged, extinction of the offense or penalty and jeopardy, as provided for in paragraphs (a), (b), (f) and (h) of Section 3 of this Rule. Article 344 was not enacted for the specific purpose of benefiting the accused. When it is said that the requirement in Article 344 that a complaint of the offended party or her relatives is jurisdictional, what is meant is that it is the complaint that starts the prosecutions proceeding. G.R. No. 192565 February 28, 2012 UNION BANK OF THE, PHILIPPINES and DESI TOMAS, petitioners, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondent Facts: Tomas was charged in court for perjury under Article 183 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) for making a false narration in a Certificate against Forum Shopping. Tomas filed a Motion to Quash,3 citing two grounds. First, she argued that the venue was improperly laid since it is the Pasay City court (where the Certificate against Forum Shopping was submitted and used) and not the MeTC-Makati City (where the Certificate against Forum Shopping was subscribed) that has jurisdiction over the perjury case. Second, she argued that the facts charged do not constitute an offense because: (a) the third element of perjury the willful and deliberate assertion of falsehood was not alleged with particularity without specifying what the other action or proceeding commenced involving the same issues in another tribunal or agency; (b) there was no other action or proceeding pending in another court when the second complaint was filed; and (c) she was charged with
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perjury by giving false testimony while the allegations in the Information make out perjury by making a false affidavit. The MeTC-Makati City denied the Motion to Quash, ruling that it has jurisdiction over the case since the Certificate against Forum Shopping was notarized in Makati City. The MeTC-Makati City also ruled that the allegations in the Information sufficiently charged Tomas with perjury. The MeTC-Makati City subsequently denied Tomas motion for reconsideration. The RTC-Makati City ruled that the MeTC-Makati City did not commit grave abuse of discretion since the order denying the Motion to Quash was based on jurisprudence later than Ilusorio. Hence the present petition to reverse the RTC-Makati City decision and quash the Information for perjury against Tomas. Issue: Whether or not the MeTC-Makati City is the proper venue and the proper court to take cognizance of the perjury case against the petitioners. Ruling: Yes. Under the circumstances, Article 183 of the RPC is indeed the applicable provision; thus, jurisdiction and venue should be determined on the basis of this article which penalizes one who "make[s] an affidavit, upon any material matter before a competent person authorized to administer an oath in cases in which the law so requires." The constitutive act of the offense is the making of an affidavit; thus, the criminal act is consummated when the statement containing a falsity is subscribed and sworn before a duly authorized person. G.R. No. 158763 March 31, 2006 JOSE C. MIRANDA, ALBERTO P. DALMACIO, and ROMEO B. OCON, petitioners, vs. VIRGILIO M. TULIAO, respondent. Facts: On 8 March 1996, two burnt cadavers were discovered and two informations for murder were filed against SPO1 Wilfredo Leao, SPO1 Ferdinand Marzan, SPO1 Ruben B. Agustin, SPO2 Alexander Micu, SPO2 Rodel Maderal, and SPO4 Emilio Ramirez in the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Santiago City.The venue was later transferred to Manila. On 22 April 1999, the RTC of Manila convicted all of the accused. The case was appealed to the SC on automatic review where it acquitted the accused therein on the ground of reasonable doubt. Petitioners filed an urgent motion to complete preliminary investigation, to reinvestigate, and to recall and/or quash the warrants of arrest. In the hearing of the urgent motion, Judge Tumaliuan noted the absence of petitioners and issued a Joint Order denying said urgent motion on the ground that, since the court did not acquire jurisdiction over their persons, the motion cannot be properly heard by the court. In the meantime, petitioners appealed the resolution of State Prosecutor.
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On 17 August 2001, the new Presiding Judge Anastacio D. Anghad took over the case and issued a Joint Order reversing the Joint Order of Judge Tumaliuan. Consequently, he ordered the cancellation of the warrant of arrest issued against petitioner Miranda. The State Prosecutor Leo S. Reyes and respondent Tuliao moved for the reconsideration of the said Joint Order and prayed for the inhibition of Judge Anghad, but the motion for reconsideration was denied. Respondent Tuliao filed a petition for certiorari, mandamus and prohibition with the SC, with prayer for a Temporary Restraining Order, seeking to enjoin Judge Anghad from further proceeding with the case, and seeking to nullify the Orders and Joint Orders.The SC issued a Resolution resolving to grant the prayer for a temporary restraining order against Judge Anghad from further proceeding with the criminal cases. Shortly after the aforesaid resolution, Judge Anghad issued a Joint Order dated 14 November 2001 dismissing the two Informations for murder against petitioners. The SC took note of respondents cash bond evidenced by O.R. No. 15924532 dated 15 November 2001, and issued the temporary restraining order while referring the petition to the Court of Appeals for adjudication on the merits. The petition and ordering the reinstatement of the criminal cases in the RTC of Santiago City, as well as the issuance of warrants of arrest against petitioners and SPO2 Maderal. Petitioners moved for a reconsideration of this Decision, but the same was denied in a Resolution dated 12 June 2003. Hence, this petition. Issue: Whether or not the Regional Trial Court has jurisdiction on the present case Ruling: As a general rule, one who seeks an affirmative relief is deemed to have submitted to the jurisdiction of the court. jurisdiction over the person of the accused is deemed waived by the accused when he files any pleading seeking an affirmative relief, except in cases when he invokes the special jurisdiction of the court by impugning such jurisdiction over his person. Therefore, in narrow cases involving special appearances, an accused can invoke the processes of the court even though there is neither jurisdiction over the person nor custody of the law. However, if a person invoking the special jurisdiction of the court applies for bail, he must first submit himself to the custody of the law. In cases not involving the so-called special appearance, the general rule applies, An accused cannot seek any judicial relief if he does not submit his person to the jurisdiction of the court. Jurisdiction over the person of the accused may be acquired either through compulsory process, such as warrant of arrest, or through his voluntary appearance, such as when he surrenders to the police or to the court. It is only when the court has already acquired jurisdiction over his person that an accused may invoke the processes of the court. The RTC Judge to whom the criminal cases are raffled is directed to act on said cases with reasonable dispatch.

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Allado vs. Diokno 232 SCRA 192 Facts: Petitioners Diosdado Jose Allado and Roberto L. Mendoza, were accused of the heinous crime of kidnapping with murder by the Presidential Anti-Crime Commission (PACC) and ordered arrested without bail by respondent judge on the basis of an alleged extra judicial confession of a security guard implicating then as the brains behind the alleged criminal action. The prosecutor then issued subpoena to the said petitioners. Not satisfied with the affidavits attached to the subpoena, Mendoza moved for the production of other documents for examination to enable him to fully defense himself and to submit a counter affidavit. They also sought to inhibition of the members of the panel of prosecutor,since they would not act in impartiality. Thereafter a new panel of prosecutor was composed. Not having been provided with the requested documents, petitioners nevertheless submitted their respective counter-affidavits denying the accusation. Petitioners then, heard that the panel issued a resolution finding a prima facie case against them. Upon verification, petitioners were informed that the resolution was not yet ready for release, but later that afternoon they were able to secure a copy of the information and was already filed with the RTC. The respondent judge issued a warrant of arrest against the petitioners. Hence the instant petition for certiorari and prohibition with prayer for a temporary restraining order. Issue: Whether or not the issuance of warrant of arrest of the respondent judge is with grave abuse of discretion Ruling: Verily, respondent judge committed grave abuse of discretion in issuing the warrant of arrest for the petitioners it appears that he did not personally examine the evidence nor did he call for the complainant and his witnesses in the face of their credible accounts. Before a warrant of arrest may be issued, the judge must satisfy himself hat based on the evidence submitted there is sufficient proof that a crime has been committed and that the person to be arrested is probably guilty thereof. However the SC are unable, to see how respondent judge arrived at such ruling. The statement given was highly improbable, if not ridiculous. A human body cannot be pulverized into ashes by simply burning it with the use of gasoline and rubber tires in an open field. For sure, the credibility of Umbal (security guard) is badly battered.

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Rule 110: Prosecution of Offenses

Rule 110: Prosecution of Offenses


G.R. No. L-45674 May 30, 1983 122 SCRA 538 EMILIANO A. FRANCISCO and HARRY B. BERNARDINO, petitioners, vs. THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS and THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Facts: Mrs. Lourdes Cruz had been suffering from a vaginal bleeding. She entered the Morong Emergency Hospital where she was tentatively diagnosed with "H-Mole, abortion and pregnancy" and was operated on by the complaint Dr. Patrocinio where 3 dead foetal triplets were removed from her uterus. The operation was successful and her bleeding was arrested. The two accused Dr. Emiliano Francisco and Atty. Harry Bernardino together with Dr. Crisologo Golla and Ernesto Ocampo went to the house of Mrs. Lourdes her and her husband Romulo Cruz to interview them about her operation. In the course of this interview accused Dr. Emiliano Francisco said that the operation was not correctly done and Mrs. Cruz should not have been operated on and only do curretage (raspahin). Accused Atty. Harry Bernardino also said that the physicians in Morong Emergency Hospital were no good, are incompetent and they are not surgeons and said accused told Romulo Cruz that he could file charges for murder through reckless imprudence. Complainant Dr. Patrocinio Angeles filed a case for intriguing against honor allegedly committed by Dr. Emiliano Francisco and Atty. Harry Bernardino with the Office of the Provincial Fiscal of Rizal. The Provincial Fiscal filed an information in the former Court of First Instance of Rizal accusing Francisco and Bernardino of the crime of grave oral defamation. The information upon order of the court, was amended by adding the particular statements uttered by each accused allegedly constituting the crime of slander. The trial court rendered its decision convicting the accused Harry Bernardino and Emiliano Francisco of the crime of grave oral defamation. On appeal to the Court of Appeals the decision of the trial court as already stated was modified finding the accused guilty of simple slander. While the case was pending, Atty. Harry Bernardino one of the petitioners herein died. Issue: Whether or not the crime of simple slander found by the Court of Appeals to be the offense committed by the petitioners has prescribed. Ruling: Article 91 of the Revised Penal Code provides that "the period of prescription shall commence to run from the day on which the crime is discovered by the offended party, the authorities or their agents, and shall be interrupted by the filing of the complaint or information, and shall commence to run again when such proceedings terminate without the accused being convicted or acquitted, or are unjustifiably stopped for any reason not imputable to him.

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Rule 110: Prosecution of Offenses

The Olarte case set at rest the conflict views, and enunciated the doctrine aforecited by the Solicitor General. The reasons for the doctrine which We find applicable to the case at bar reads: In view of this diversity of precedents, and in order to provide guidance for Bench and Bar, this Court has re-examined the question and, after mature consideration, has arrived at the conclusion that the true doctrine is, and should be, the one established by the decisions holding that the filing of the complaint in the Municipal Court, even if it be merely for purposes of preliminary examination or investigation, should, and does, interrupt the period of prescription of the criminal responsibility, even if the court where the complaint or information is filed can not try the case on its merits. Several reasons buttress this conclusion: first, the text of Article 91 of the Revised Penal Code, in declaring that the period of prescription "shall be interrupted by the filing of the complaint or information" without distinguishing whether the complaint is filed in the court for preliminary examination or investigation merely, or for action on the merits. Second, even if the court where the complaint or information is filed may only proceed to investigate the case, its actuations already represent the initial step of the proceedings against the offender. Third, it is unjust to deprive the injured party of the right to obtain vindication on account of delays that are not under his control. All that the victim of the offense may do on his part to initiate the prosecution is to file the requisite complaint. And it is no argument that Article 91 also expresses that the interrupted prescription "shall commence to run again when such p terminate without the accused being convicted or acquitted", thereby indicating that the court in which the complaint or information is filed must have power to acquit or convict the accused. Precisely, the trial on the merits usually terminates in conviction or acquittal not otherwise. But it is in the court conducting a preliminary investigation where the proceedings may terminate without conviction or acquittal if the court should discharge the accused because no prima facie case has been shown. As is a well-known fact, like the proceedings in the court conducting a preliminary investigation, a proceeding in the Fiscal's Office may terminate without conviction or acquittal. Clearly, therefore, the firing of the denuncia or complaint for intriguing against honor by the offended party, later changed by the Fiscal to grave oral defamation, even if it were in the Fiscal's Office, 39 days after the alleged defamatory remarks were committed (or discovered) by the accused interrupts the period of prescription. Accused Emiliano Francisco is acquitted.

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G.R. No. 125066 July 8, 1998 292 SCRA 87 ISABELITA REODICA, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS, and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Facts: On the evening of October 17, 1987, petitioner Isabelita Reodica was driving a van along Doa Soledad Avenue, Better Living Subdivision, Paraaque, Metro Manila. Allegedly because of her recklessness, her van hit the car of complainant Norberto Bonsol. As a result, complainant sustained physical injuries, while the damage to his car amounted to P8,542.00. Three days after the incident the complainant filed an Affidavit of Complaint against petitioner with the Fiscal's Office. An information was filed before the RTC of Makati charging petitioner with "Reckless Imprudence Resulting in Damage to Property with Slight Physical Injury. Upon arraignment, petitioner pleaded not guilty to the charge. Trial then ensued. The RTC of Makati, Branch 145, rendered a decision convicting petitioner of the "quasi offense of reckless imprudence resulting in damage to property with slight physical injuries." Petitioner appealed from the decision to the Court of Appeals. After her motions for extension of time to file her brief were granted, she filed a Motion to Withdraw Appeal for Probation Purposes, and to Suspend, Ex Abundanti Cautela, Period for Filing Appellant's Brief. This was denied by the Court of Appeals and directed petitioner to file her brief. Respondent Court of Appeals rendered a decision affirming the appealed decision. Petitioner subsequently filed a motion for reconsideration which was denied hence, the present petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. Issue: Whether or not the quasi offenses in question have already prescribed.

Ruling: Prescription of the Quasi Offenses in Question. Art. 91 of the Revised Penal Code provides: Art. 91. Computation of prescription of offenses. The period of prescription shall commence to run from the day on which the crime is discovered by the offended party, the authorities, or their agents, and shall be interrupted by the filing of the complaint of information, and shall commence to run again when such proceedings terminate without the accused being convicted or acquitted, or are unjustifiably stopped by any reason not imputable to him. (emphasis supplied) Notably, the aforequoted article, in declaring that the prescriptive period "shall be interrupted by the filing of the complaint or information," does not distinguish whether the complaint is filed for preliminary examination or investigation only or for an action on the merits. Thus, in Francisco v. Court of Appeals and People v. Cuaresma, this Court held that the filing of the complaint even with the fiscal's office suspends the running of the statute of limitations.
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In the instant case, as the offenses involved are covered by the Revised Penal Code, Article 91 thereof and the rulings in Francisco and Cuaresma apply. Thus, the prescriptive period for the quasi offenses in question was interrupted by the filing of the complaint with the fiscal's office three days after the vehicular mishap and remained tolled pending the termination of this case. We cannot, therefore, uphold petitioner's defense of prescription of the offenses charged in the information in this case. Petition is GRANTED. G.R. No. 152662 June 13, 2012 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. MA. THERESA PANGILINAN, respondent. Facts: On September 16, 1997, Virginia C. Malolos filed an affidavit-complaint for estafa and violation of Batas Pambansa Blg. 22 against respondent Ma. Theresa Pangilinan with the Office of the City Prosecutor of Quezon City. The complaint alleges that respondent issued 9 checks with an aggregate amount of P9,658,592.00 in favor of private complainant which were dishonored upon presentment for payment. On December 5 1997, respondent filed a civil case for accounting, recovery of commercial documents, enforceability and effectivity of contract and specific performance against private complainant before the RTC of Valenzuela City. On December 10, 1997, respondent filed a "Petition to Suspend Proceedings on the Ground of Prejudicial Question" before the Office of the City Prosecutor of Quezon City. Assistant City Prosecutor Ruben Catubay recommended the suspension of the criminal proceedings pending the outcome of the civil action respondent filed against private complainant with the RTC of Valenzuela City which was approved by the City Prosecutor of Quezon City. Aggrieved, private complainant raised the matter before the Department of Justice (DOJ). Secretary of Justice Serafin P. Cuevas reversed the resolution of the City Prosecutor of Quezon City and ordered the filing of informations for violation of BP Blg. 22 against respondent in connection with her issuance two checks totaling the amount of P8,604,000.00. The estafa a violation of BP Blg. 22 charges involving the 7 other checks included in the affidavit-complaint filed on were, dismissed. Two counts for violation of BP Blg. 22 were filed against respondent Ma.Theresa Pangilinan on February 3, 2000 before the Office of the Clerk of Court MeTC, Quezon City which was raffled to MeTC, Branch 31. On June 17, 2000, respondent filed an "Omnibus Motion to Quash the Information and to Defer the Issuance of Warrant of Arrest" before MeTC, Branch 31, Quezon City which was granted. In a Decision July 27, 2001, the presiding judge of RTC, Branch 218, Quezon City reversed the Order of the MeTC. Dissatisfied with the RTC Decision, respondent filed with the Supreme Court a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. In a resolution, this Court referred the petition to the CA for appropriate action. The CA gave due course to the petition by requiring respondent and private complainant to comment on the petition. The CA reversed the July 27,2001 Decision of RTC, Branch 218, Quezon City, thereby dismissing Criminal Case Nos. 89152 and 89153.
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Issue:

Whether or not the filing of the affidavit-complaint for estafa and violation of BP Blg. 22 against respondent with the Office of the City Prosecutor of Quezon City on September 16, 1997 interrupted the period of prescription of such offense. Ruling: Since BP Blg. 22 is a special law that imposes a penalty of imprisonment of not less than thirty (30) days but not more than one year or by a fine for its violation, it therefor prescribes in four (4) years in accordance with the aforecited law. The running of the prescriptive period, however, should be tolled upon the institution of proceedings against the guilty person. The affidavit-complaints for the violations were filed against respondent on September 16, 1997. The cases reached the MeTC of Quezon City only on February 13, 2000 because in the meanwhile, respondent filed a civil case for accounting followed by a petition before the City Prosecutor for suspension of proceedings on the ground of "prejudicial question". The matter was raised before the Secretary of Justice after the City Prosecutor approved the petition to suspend proceedings. It was only after the Secretary of Justice so ordered that the informations for the violation of BP Blg. 22 were filed with the MeTC of Quezon City. Clearly, it was respondents own motion for the suspension of the criminal proceedings, which motion she predicated on her civil case for accounting, that caused the filing in court of the 1997 initiated proceedings only in 2000. Instant petition is GRANTED. The March 12, 2002 Decision of the Court of Appeals is hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE. The Department of Justice is ORDERED to re-file the informations for violation of BP Blg. 22 against the respondent. G.R. No. 127845 March 10, 2000 327 SCRA 711 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff and appellee, vs. LODRIGO BAYYA, defendant and appellant. Facts: Sometime in 1994 when Rosie Bayya was still 12 years old, her father, the accused, forced her at the point of a knife to have sexual intercourse with her in the family house. Her father repeated this bestial act in their house about twice a week when her mother was not at home then later, he used her four times a month and the last that she remembered was on July 12, 1995. Six days after the last sexual assault she revealed to her aunt, Trinidad (Trining) Garcia, that she does not like to go home because her father used to have sexual intercourse with her. The girl was brought to the PNP station of Burgos to give her statement which she did where she divulged what her father did to her. After she was advised to file a complaint at her behest, she was brought to the PNP station at Burgos to continue and wind up her ordeal with a physical examination of her by a public physician. On October 9, 1995 an Information was filed by Asst. Provincial Prosecutor Pacifico Paas. After appellant pleaded not guilty upon arraignment the trial ensued. Appellant unhesitatingly admitted having carnal knowledge of his daughter, Rosie Bayya, twice but theorized that he was "out of his mind" when he did the lecherous acts on her.
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Finding the facts established by the evidence falling squarely under Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code as amended by Republic Act No. 7659, the lower court, after trial on the merits, rendered a judgment of conviction, sentencing appellant to suffer the ultimate penalty of DEATH. Issue: Whether or not there was a transgression of his right to be informed of the nature and cause of accusation against him, in view of the fact that the Information is silent about the applicability of R.A. No. 7659. RULING: A careful perusal of the Information indicting appellant reveals a crucial omission in its averments of the minority of the victim, Rosie S. Bayya. Instructive in this regard is Section 6, Rule 110 of the Rules of Court, which reads: Sec. 6. Sufficiency of complaint or information. A complaint or information is sufficient if it states the name of the accused; the designation of the offense by the statute; the acts or omissions complained of as constituting the offense; the name of the offended party; the approximate time of the commission of the offense, and the place wherein the offense was committed. When an offense is committed by more than one person, all of them shall be included in the complaint or information. The purpose of the above-quoted rule is to inform the accused of the nature and cause of the accusation against him, a right guaranteed by no less than the fundamental law of the land. Elaborating on the defendants right to be informed, the Court held in Pecho vs. People that the objectives of this right are: 1. To furnish the accused with such a description of the charge against him as will enable him to make the defense; 2. To avail himself of his conviction or acquittal for protection against a further prosecution for the same cause; and 3. To inform the court of the facts alleged, so that it may decide whether they are sufficient in law to support a conviction, if one should be had. It is thus imperative that the Information filed with the trial court be complete to the end that the accused may suitably prepare his defense. Corollary to this, an indictment must fully state the elements of the specific offense alleged to have been committed as it is the recital of the essentials of a crime which delineates the nature and cause of accusation against the accused. In the case under scrutiny, the information does not allege the minority of the victim, Rosie S. Bayya, although the same was proven during the trial as borne by the records. The omission is not merely formal in nature since doctrinally, an accused cannot be held liable for more than what he is indicted for. It matters not how conclusive and convincing the evidence of guilt may be, but an accused cannot be convicted of any offense, not charged in the Complaint or information on which he is tried or therein necessarily included. He has a right to be informed of the nature of the offense with which he is charged before he is put on trial. To convict an accused of an offense higher than that
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charged in the Complaint or information on which he is tried would constitute unauthorized denial of that right. The Information under consideration charges nothing more than simple rape defined and penalized in the first and second paragraphs of Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code, that is having carnal knowledge of a woman by means of force and intimidation and against her will. The additional allegation that the offender is a parent of the offended party can only be deemed a generic aggravating circumstance. The failure of the prosecution to allege the age of the victim has effectively removed the crime from the ambit of Section 11 of Republic Act No. 7659 prescribing the death penalty "when the victim is under eighteen (18) years of age and the offender is a parent, ascendant, stepparent, guardian, relative by consanguinity or affinity within the third civil degree, or the common-law spouse of the parent of the victim". Judgment of conviction is AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that appellant LODRIGO BAYYA is adjudged guilty of simple rape and is sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua. G.R. No. 169888 November 11, 2008 570 SCRA 622 RAMON Y. TALAGA, JR., City Mayor, Lucena City, petitioner vs. HON. SANDIGANBAYAN, 4th Division, and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Facts: Mayor Ramon Y. Talaga, Jr. (petitioner) and the City Councilors are prosecuted for violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act: Republic Act (R.A.) No. 3019, as amended. Criminal and administrative complaints were filed by Elan Recreation, Inc. (ELAN) against petitioner with the Office of the Ombudsman. The complaints alleged that petitioner, in his capacity as mayor of the City of Lucena, had unlawfully granted favors to a third party with respect to the operation of bingo games in the city, to the damage and prejudice of the complainants. The Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for Luzon recommended the dismissal of both the criminal and administrative complaints but the Ombudsman denied the dismissal of the criminal case. The Office of the Special Prosecutor recommended the filing of three criminal charges for violation of R.A. No. 3019. The Sandinganbayan issued a Resolution quashing the Informations in Criminal Cases No. 27737 and 27739 upon motion by the petitioner but sustained the Information in Criminal Case No. 27738 and it back to the Office of the Ombudsman and ordered the latter to conduct further preliminary investigation. An Amended Information and Second Amended Information were filed by the prosecution in theSandiganbayan. The first included the members of the City Council of Lucena City (City Councilors), as additional accused, while the Second Amended Information (Information) alleged conspiracy between petitioner and the City Councilors. The Sandiganbayan admitted both amended informations. Petitioner and the City Councilors filed a Motion to Quash the Information on the ground that there is no valid information on which the Sandiganbayan has a finding of probable cause because the second amended information's allegations do not constitute an offense, there being no violation of Presidential Decree (P.D.) No. 771 as it has no applicability to bingo operations and P.D. No. 771 has been superceded by P.D. No. 1869
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and R.A. No 7160. The Sandiganbayna denied the petition and petitioners Motion for Reconsideration. Petitioner and the City Councilors were arraigned in Criminal Case No. 27738 and all pleaded "not guilty". On July 5, 2005, the prosecution filed a Motion to Suspend the Accused Pendente Lite. Petitioner and his co-accused filed an Opposition to the motion. The respondent issued a Resolution on October 3, 2005 in Criminal Case No. 27738 ordering petitioner's preventive suspension for ninety 90 days in accordance with Section 13 of R.A. No. 3019. Petitioner then filed the present petition for certiorari with an urgent application for the issuance of a temporary restraining order and/or preliminary injunction under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court. The Court issued a Temporary Restraining Order on November 9, 2005 enjoining public respondents from implementing the suspension of petitioner. Issue: Whether or not there is no valid Information under which petitioner stands charged.

Ruling: Section 9, Rule 110, Rules of Court provides the guideline for the determination of the validity or sufficiency of allegations in an information, to wit: SECTION 9. Cause of the Accusation. - The acts or omissions complained of as constituting the offense and the qualifying and aggravating circumstances must be stated in ordinary and concise language and not necessarily in the language used in the statute but in terms sufficient to enable a person of common understanding to know what offense is being charged as well as its qualifying and aggravating circumstances and for the court to pronounce judgment. (Emphasis supplied) The test is whether the crime is described in intelligible terms with such particularity as to appraise the accused, with reasonable certainty, of the offense charged. The raison d'etre of the rule is to enable the accused to suitably prepare his defense. Based on the foregoing test, the Information sufficiently apprises petitioner of the charges against him. The Information charged the petitioner of evident bad faith and manifest partiality when as Mayor of Lucena City, petitioner, in conspiracy with the City Council, gave unwarranted benefits to Jose Sy Bang. Moreover, it states the specific act which constituted the giving of unwarranted benefits, namely, granting unto the said Jose Sy Bang a local franchise to operate a bingo business in Lucena City in violation of existing laws. These allegations are clear enough for a layman to understand. Petition is dismissed.

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Jurisdiction

G.R. No. 130492 January 31, 2001 350 SCRA 679 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. SALVADOR ARROJADO, accusedappellant. Facts: Accused-appellant Salvador Arrojado and the victim Mary Ann Arrojado are first cousins. Accused-appellant lived with the victim and her father. He helped take care for the victim's father, for which he was paid a monthly salary. In the early morning of June 1, 1996, accused-appellant went to the house of, Erlinda Arrojado Magdaluyo, and reported that the victim had committed suicide. The victim, who was bloodied, was lying on her left side facing the bedroom door with her hands clasped together with the knife near her. Accused-appellant told Erlinda that he was afraid he might be suspected as the one responsible for the victim's death. The matter was reported to the police who saw no signs of forcible entry. Dr. Ma. Lourdes Roldan, of the Roxas City Health Office, conducted the postmortem examination of the victim and listed "HEMORRHAGIC SHOCK as the victim's immediate cause of death and "multiple stab wounds" as the antecedent cause. An Information was filed against accused which alleges that accused, armed with a knife, with intent to kill, with treachery and evident premeditation stabbed Mary Ann Arrojado, on the different parts of the body. It was read and explained to accused-appellant in his native dialect, after which he pleaded not guilty. The trial court rendered its decision finding accused Salvador Arrojado guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the heinous crime of murder, defined and penalized by Art. 248 of the RPC, as amended by Section 6 of Republic Act 7659, and, there being no aggravating circumstance, hereby sentences him to imprisonment of 30 years of reclusion perpetua, and to indemnity the heirs of the deceased Mary Ann Arrojado in the amount of P60,000.00, pay them moral damages of P80,000.00, and pay the costs of this action. Issue: Whether or not the aggravating circumstance of abuse of confidence can be appreciated and would elevate the penalty of murder from reclusion perpetua to death even though it was not alleged in the said information Ruling: The murder in this case took place after the effectivity of R.A. No. 7659 on December 31, 1993 which increased the penalty for murder from reclusion temporal maximum to death to reclusion perpetua to death. In view of the presence of the aggravating circumstance of abuse of confidence and in accordance with Art. 63(1) of the Revised Penal Code, the trial court should have imposed the penalty of death on accused-appellant. However, on December 1, 2000, the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure took effect, requiring that every complaint or information state not only the qualifying but also the aggravating circumstances. This provision may be given retroactive effect in the light of the well settled rule that "statutes regulating the procedure of the court will be construed as applicable to actions pending and undetermined at the time of their passage. Procedural laws are retroactive in that sense and to that extent." The aggravating circumstance of
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abuse of confidence not having been alleged in the information, the same therefore could not be appreciated to raise accused-appellant's sentence to death. The decision of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 19, Roxas City, is AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that accused-appellant Salvador Arrojado is sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetuain its entire duration and to its full extent. G.R. No. 188106 November 25, 2009 605 SCRA 807 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, vs. ANTONIO DALISAY y DESTRESA, Appellant. Facts: On the evening of July 10, 2003, the victim (16-year-old) was alone playing cards in the rented room when appellant entered the room to change his clothes. He then laid himself down on the floor near the young lady, pulled her shirt up, and touched her breasts and thighs and succeeded in having carnal knowledge with the her. She resisted by kicking his legs and by pleading for him to stop. Prior to this assault, appellant had already been repeatedly molesting the girl since she was 13 years old. She kept silence because of fear that he would make real his threats of annihilating her family. Her sister disclosed to their aunt the sexual abuse. It appeared that the victims sister witnessed an incident when appellant pulled off his dastardly act. Their aunt verified from the victim the truth of the molestation then reported the matter to the authorities. The examining physician opined that the findings were definitive evidence of previous and recent blunt penetrating trauma to the genitals of the victim. An Information for rape in relation to Republic Act (R.A.) No. 7610 was then filed. Appellant, on arraignment, pleaded not guilty, and denied the accusation. He further claimed that the filing of the charge was only upon the instigation by the victims aunt who harbored a grudge against him. After trial on the merits, the RTC rendered a decision convicting appellant of qualified rape but imposing the penalty of reclusion perpetua in light of the passage of R.A. No. 9346. On intermediate review, the appellate court affirmed with modification the ruling of the trial court. The CA convicted the accused not of qualified rape but of simple rape. The case having been elevated to this Court, we now finally review the trial and the appellate courts uniform findings. Issue: Whether or not accused can be convicted of a different crime other than the one charged in the information. Ruling: Prior to the effectivity of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, courts generally awarded exemplary damages in criminal cases when an aggravating circumstance, whether ordinary or qualifying, had been proven to have attended the commission of the crime, even if the same was not alleged in the information. This is in accordance with the aforesaid Article 2230. However, with the promulgation of the Revised Rules, courts no longer consider the aggravating circumstances not alleged and proven in the determination of the penalty and in the award of damages. Thus, even if an aggravating circumstance has been
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proven, but was not alleged, courts will not award exemplary damages. Pertinent are the following sections of Rule 110: Sec. 8. Designation of the offense.The complaint or information shall state the designation of the offense given by the statute, aver the acts or omissions constituting the offense, and specify its qualifying and aggravating circumstances. If there is no designation of the offense, reference shall be made to the section or subsection of the statute punishing it. Sec. 9. Cause of accusation.The acts or omissions complained of as constituting the offense and the qualifying and aggravating circumstances must be stated in ordinary and concise language and not necessarily in the language used in the statute but in terms sufficient to enable a person of common understanding to know what offense is being charged as well as its qualifying and aggravating circumstances and for the court to pronounce judgment. Nevertheless, People v. Catubig laid down the principle that courts may still award exemplary damages based on the aforementioned Article 2230, even if the aggravating circumstance has not been alleged, so long as it has been proven, in criminal cases instituted before the effectivity of the Revised Rules which remained pending thereafter. Catubig reasoned that the retroactive application of the Revised Rules should not adversely affect the vested rights of the private offended party. In the instant case, the information for rape was filed in 2003 or after the effectivity of the Revised Rules. Following the doctrine in the second set of cases, the Court can very well deny the award of exemplary damages based on Article 2230 because the special qualifying circumstances of minority and relationship, as mentioned above, were not Decision of the Court of Appeals is AFFIRMED WITH THE MODIFICATION that the award of exemplary damages is increased toP30,000.00. SO ORDERED. G.R. No. 103102 March 6, 1992 207 SCRA 134 CLAUDIO J. TEEHANKEE, JR., petitioner, vs. HON. JOB B. MADAYAG and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Facts: Petitioner was originally charged in an information for the crime of frustrated murder for shooting Maureen Navarro Hultman on the head causing her to be comatosed. After the prosecution had rested its case, petitioner was allowed to file a motion for leave to file a demurrer to evidence. However, before the said motion could be filed, Maureen Navarro Hultman died. Consequently, private prosecutor Rogelio A. Vinluan filed an omnibus motion for leave of court to file amended information and to admit said amended information. Petitioner filed an opposition thereto, as well as a rejoinder to the reply of the prosecution. On November 13, 1991, the trial court issued the questioned order admitting the amended information. Petitioner refused to be arraigned on the amended information for lack of a preliminary investigation thereon. By reason of such refusal, respondent judge ordered
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that a plea of "not guilty" be entered for petitioner. Thereafter, respondent judge ordered the prosecution to present its evidence. Issues: 1. Whether or not there was an amendment of the information or substitution when the information was changed from frustrated murder to consummated murder. 2. Whether or not the amendment is a formal amendment. RULING: (1) In determining, whether there should be an amendment under the first paragraph of Section 14, Rule 110, or a substitution of information under the second paragraph thereof, the rule is that where the second information involves the same offense, or an offense which necessarily includes or is necessarily included in the first information, and amendment of the information is sufficient; otherwise, where the new information charges an offense which is distinct and different from that initially charged, a substitution is in order. In the present case, therefore, there is an identity of offenses charged in both the original and the amended information. What is involved here is not a variance in the nature of different offenses charged, but only a change in the stage of execution of the same offense from frustrated to consummated murder. This is being the case, we hold that an amendment of the original information will suffice and, consequent thereto, the filing of the amended information for murder is proper. (2) Formal. An objective appraisal of the amended information for murder filed against herein petitioner will readily show that the nature of the offense originally charged was not actually changed. Instead, an additional allegation, that is, the supervening fact of the death of the victim was merely supplied to aid the trial court in determining the proper penalty for the crime. That the accused committed a felonious act with intent to kill the victim continues to be the prosecution's theory. There is no question that whatever defense herein petitioner may adduce under the original information for frustrated murder equally applies to the amended information for murder. Under the circumstances thus obtaining, it is irremissible that the amended information for murder is, at most, an amendment as to form which is allowed even during the trial of the case. The extraordinary writs prayed for are hereby DENIED and the instant petition is DISMISSED for lack of merit.

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G.R. No. 165751 April 12, 2005 455 SCRA 736 DATU GUIMID P. MATALAM, Petitioners, vs. THE SECOND DIVISION OF THE SANDIGANBAYAN and THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondents. Facts: An information was filed before the Sandiganbayan on November 15, 2004 charging petitioner Datu Guimid Matalam, Habib A. Bajunaid, Ansari M. Lawi, Muslimin Unga and Naimah Unte with violation of Section 3(e) of Republic Act No. 3019, as amended, for their alleged illegal and unjustifiable refusal to pay the monetary claims of Kasan I. Ayunan, Abdul E. Zailon, Esmael A. Ebrahim, Annabelle Zailon, Pendatun Mambatawan, Hyria Mastura and Faizal I. Hadil. Petitioner filed a Motion for Reinvestigation. Per order of the court, a reinvestigation of the case was conducted where petitioner filed his Counter-Affidavit. After the reinvestigation, the public prosecutor filed a "Manifestation and Motion to Admit Amended Information Deleting the Names of Other Accused Except Datu Guimid Matalam" to which petitioner filed a Motion to Dismiss and Opposition to the Motion to Admit the Alleged Amended Information Against the Accused Guimid P. Matalam. Thereafter, the public prosecutor filed his Reply to which petitioner filed a Rejoinder. In his Motion to Dismiss, petitioner alleged that the amended information charges an entirely new cause of action. The corpus delicti of the amended information is no longer his alleged refusal to pay the backwages ordered by the Civil Service Commission, but the alleged willful, unlawful and illegal dismissal from the service of the complaining witnesses. He insists that the amended information charging a separate and entirely different offense cannot be admitted because there would be a serious violation of due process of law. He claims he is entitled to a preliminary investigation since he was not informed that he is being charged for the alleged dismissal of the complaining witnesses and that he was not given the opportunity to explain. The Sandiganbayan granted the Manifestation and Motion to Admit Amended Information Deleting the Names of Other Accused Except Datu Guimid P. Matalam. It admitted the Amended Information charging solely petitioner for Violation of Section 3(e) of Rep. Act No. 3019. Petitioner filed a Motion for Reconsideration which the prosecution opposed and denied by the Sandiganbayan Issue: Whether or not the amendment is substantial.

Ruling: The test as to whether a defendant is prejudiced by the amendment has been said to be whether a defense under the information as it originally stood would be available after the amendment is made, and whether any evidence defendant might have would be equally applicable to the information in the one form as in the other. An amendment to an information which does not change the nature of the crime alleged therein does not affect the essence of the offense or cause surprise or deprive the accused of an opportunity to meet the new averment had each been held to be one of form and not of substance. In the case at bar, the amendment was indeed substantial. The recital of facts constituting the offense charged was definitely altered. In the original information, the
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prohibited act allegedly committed by petitioner was the illegal and unjustifiable refusal to pay the monetary claims of the private complainants, while in the amended information, it is the illegal dismissal from the service of the private complainants. However, it cannot be denied that the alleged illegal and unjustifiable refusal to pay monetary claims is related to, and arose from, the alleged illegal dismissal from the service of the private complainants. According to Retired Senior Associate Justice Florenz D. Regalado, before the plea is taken, the information may be amended in substance and/or form, without leave of court; but if amended in substance, the accused is entitled to another preliminary investigation, unless the amended charge is related to or is included in the original charge. Thus, the rule is: Before or after a plea, a substantial amendment in an information entitles an accused to another preliminary investigation. However, if the amended information contains a charge related to or is included in the original information, a new preliminary investigation is not required. Respondent courts resolutions are REVERSED AND SET ASIDE.. G.R. No. 182677 August 3, 2010 626 SCRA 575 JOSE ANTONIO C. LEVISTE, petitioner, vs. HON. ELMO M. ALAMEDA, HON. RAUL M. GONZALEZ, HON. EMMANUEL Y. VELASCO, HEIRS OF THE LATE RAFAEL DE LAS ALAS, respondents. Facts: Petitioner was, by Information charged with homicide for the death of Rafael de las Alas before the RTC of Makati City Branch 150 to which the case was raffled, presided by Judge Elmo Alameda, who issued a commitment order against petitioner who was placed under police custody while confined at the Makati Medical Center. After petitioner posted a P40,000 cash bond which the trial court approved, he was released from detention, and his arraignment was set on January 24, 2007. The private complainants-heirs of De las Alas filed, with the conformity of the public prosecutor, an Urgent Omnibus Motion praying, inter alia, for the deferment of the proceedings to allow the public prosecutor to re-examine the evidence on record or to conduct a reinvestigation to determine the proper offense. The RTC thereafter issued the two orders deferring petitioners arraignment and allowing the prosecution to conduct a reinvestigation and denying reconsideration of the first order. Petitioner assailed these orders via certiorari and prohibition before the Court of Appeals. Petitioner filed an Urgent Ex-Parte Manifestation and Motion before the trial court and also separately moved for the inhibition of Judge Alameda with prayer to defer action on the admission of the Amended Information. The trial court issued the other assailed orders that (1) admitted the Amended Information for murder and directed the issuance of a warrant of arrest and (2) set the arraignment. Petitioner questioned these two orders via supplemental petition before the appellate court. Issue: Whether or not the amendment of the Information from homicide to murder is considered a substantial amendment.
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Ruling: The Court answers in the affirmative. The test as to whether a defendant is prejudiced by the amendment is whether a defense under the information as it originally stood would be available after the amendment is made, and whether any evidence defendant might have would be equally applicable to the information in the one form as in the other. An amendment to an information which does not change the nature of the crime alleged therein does not affect the essence of the offense or cause surprise or deprive the accused of an opportunity to meet the new averment had each been held to be one of form and not of substance. In one case, it was squarely held that the amendment of the Information from homicide to murder is "one of substance with very serious consequences." The amendment involved in the present case consists of additional averments of the circumstances of treachery, evident premeditation, and cruelty, which qualify the offense charged from homicide to murder. It being a new and material element of the offense, petitioner should be given the chance to adduce evidence on the matter. Not being merely clarificatory, the amendment essentially varies the prosecutions original theory of the case and certainly affects not just the form but the weight of defense to be mustered by petitioner. The Court distinguishes the factual milieus in Buhat v. CA and Pacoy v. Cajigal, wherein the amendment of the caption of the Information from homicide to murder was not considered substantial because there was no real change in the recital of facts constituting the offense charged as alleged in the body of the Information, as the allegations of qualifying circumstances were already clearly embedded in the original Information. Buhat pointed out that the original Information for homicide already alleged the use of superior strength, while Pacoy states that the averments in the amended Information for murder are exactly the same as those already alleged in the original Information for homicide. None of these peculiar circumstances obtains in the present case. WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED. The assailed Decision and Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 97761 are AFFIRMED. SO ORDERED. People vs Degamo G.R. No. 121211, April 30, 2003 Facts: Ellen Vertudazo and her children were living in a rented apartment in Ormoc City. She was not personally acquainted with Roy Degamo and only came to know him through her brother-in-law who stayed with her for a period of time. October 1, 1994, Ellen heard someone calling her name. Thinking that her brother in law had returned, she unwittingly opened the door. It was Roy who knocked then forced his way inside the house and raped Ellen. Roy was holding a knife while having sex with Ellen. He warned her not to tell anyone about the incident and after that he left. In the morning of the same day, complainant reported the incident to the Barangay Captain and to the police. On October 4, 1994, a complaint was filed before the trial court charging Roy with the crime of rape to which, upon arraignment, pleaded not guilty. On January 17, 1995, before the start of the trial proper, the court allowed the complaint to be amended to include the allegation that by
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reason of the incident of rape, the victim has become insane. The trial court then found Roy guilty beyond reasonable doubt and imposed a punishment of death upon him. Issue: Whether or not the amendment to the information could be made even after arraignment. Ruling: Though the amendment was made after Roy made his plea, it was allowed because the subsequent insanity of Ellen was a supervening fact which allowed the amendment to be made even after arraignment. People vs. Tubongbanua G.R. No. 171271, August 31, 2006 Facts: Tubongbanua was charged with murder in an amended information for killing his employer (he was Atty. Evelyn Sua-Khos driver) for allegedly having grudges against her because he was being given spoiled food, that his meals were being measured, that he worked long hours of the day and served many bosses. On February 11, 2001, accused spent the day at her boarding house where he told her he could no longer take the way Atty. Sua-Kho treated him. Later he said "nadedemonyo na ako" and that he would finish Atty. Sua-Kho. Then he would go to the province, his territory, where he could not be followed. He was sentenced to death by the RTC where his contention of self-defense was not recognized. The case was elevated to the SC because the penalty was death, but it referred it back to the CA. The CA upheld the RTCs decision however, with regards the aggravating circumstances of dwelling and insult to the rank, sex and age of Sua-Kho, the Court of Appeals noted that these circumstances were included as amendments to the information after the presentation by the prosecution of its evidence. As such, the same should not be allowed because it will prejudice the rights of Tubongbanua. Issue: Whether the amendments to the information against Tubongbanua should have been allowed despite them aggravating circumstances. Ruling: One who invokes self-defense admits responsibility for the killing. Accordingly, the burden of proof shifts to Tubongbanua, who must then prove the justifying circumstance. He must show by clear and convincing evidence that he indeed acted in self-defense, or in defense of a relative or a stranger. Tubongbanuas version of the stabbing incident does not inspire belief. His testimony that it was Atty. Sua-Kho who attacked him is uncorroborated and improbable. Tubongbanuas alleged use of reasonable means to repel the aggression is also untenable considering the nature and number of wounds inflicted on the victim which demonstrate a determined effort to kill the victim and not just defend oneself. The SC found, however, that the Court of Appeals erred in not allowing the amendments in the information regarding the aggravating circumstances of dwelling and insult or disregard of the respect due to rank, age or sex. Section 14, Rule 110 of the Rules of Court, provides that
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an amendment after the plea of the accused is permitted only as to matters of form, provided leave of court is obtained and such amendment is not prejudicial to the rights of the accused. A substantial amendment is not permitted after the accused had already been arraigned. Tested against these guidelines, the insertion of the aggravating circumstances of dwelling and insult or disregard of the respect due to rank, age, or sex of the victim is clearly a formal, not a substantial, amendment. These amendments do not have the effect of charging another offense different or distinct from the charge of murder as contained in the original information. They relate only to the range of the penalty that the court might impose in the event of conviction. The amendment did not adversely affect any substantial right of Tubongbanua. Besides, he never objected to the presentation of evidence to prove the aggravating circumstances of dwelling and insult or in disregard of the respect due to the offended party on account of rank, age or sex. Without any objection by the defense, the defect is deemed waived. Fronda-Baggao vs. People G.R. No. 151785, December 10, 2007 Facts: In 1989, the provincial prosecutor of Abra filed with the RTC of Bangued, four (4) separate informations for illegal recruitment against Susan Fronda-Baggao and Lawrence Lee. Susan eluded arrest for more than a decade until she was finally arrested in 1999. The prosecutor then filed a motion to amend the four informations into one (1) for illegal recruitment in large scale. Issue: Whether or not the prosecutor's action to amend the 4 informations into 1 for illegal recruitment in large scale is allowed. Ruling: Yes, the prosecutor is allowed to do so, pursuant to section 14, rule 110 of the Revised Rules of Court, for the accused had not yet entered any plea, because the action to amend the 4 informations was initiated prior to arraignment. Ricarze vs. Court of Appeals G.R. No. 160451, February 9, 2007 Facts: Ricarze was employed as a collector-messenger by City Service Corporation, a domestic corporation engaged in messengerial services and was assigned to the main office of Caltex Philippines, Inc. (Caltex) in Makati to collect checks payable to Caltex and deliver them to the cashier. Caltex filed a criminal complaint against Ricarze for estafa through falsification of commercial documents. The manager of its Banking and Insurance Department, Romano, alleged that while his department was conducting a daily electronic report from PCIBank (one of its depositary banks), it was discovered that a number of
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company checks were cleared through PCIBannk and were ordered payable to a Dante R. Gutierrez. The checks were not issued by Caltex, and the signatures appearing thereon had been forged. Upon verification, it was found out that the checks were deposited at the BDO in the name of a regular customer of Caltex, named Gutierrez. Gutierrez, however, disowned the savings account as well as his signatures on the checks. He also denied having withdrawn any amount from said savings account. A bank teller from the BDO positively identified Ricarze as the person who opened the savings account using Gutierrezs name. Ricarze averred that unless the Informations were amended to change the private complainant to PCIB, his right as accused would be prejudiced. He pointed out, however, that the Informations can no longer be amended because he had already been arraigned under the original Informations. He said that the amendments of the Informations to substitute PCIB as the offended party for Caltex would place him in double jeopardy. PCIB, through SRMO, opposed the motion. The PCIB contended that it had re-credited the amount to Caltex to the extent of the indemnity; hence, the PCIB had been subrogated to the rights and interests of Caltex as private complainant, which resulted into the PCIB being entitled to receive civil indemnity which the trial court would adjudge against the accused. Issue: Whether or not there is a valid subrogation between Caltex and PCIBANK

Ruling: The Supreme Court agreed with PCIBs comment that Ricarze failed to make a distinction between legal and conventional subrogation. Subrogation is the transfer of all the rights of the creditor to a third person, who substitutes him in all his rights. It may either be legal or conventional. Legal subrogation takes place without agreement but by operation of law because of certain acts. Instances of legal subrogation are those provided in Article 1302 of the Civil Code. Conventional subrogation, on the other hand, is that which takes place by agreement of the parties. Thus, Ricarzes acquiescence is not necessary for subrogation to take place because the instant case is one of legal subrogation that occurs by operation of law, and without need of the debtors knowledge. Thus, being subrogated to the right of Caltex, PCIB, through counsel, has the right to intervene in the proceedings, and under substantive laws is entitled to restitution of its properties or funds, reparation, or indemnification. Pilapil vs. Ibay-Somera G.R. No. 89116, June 30, 1989 Facts: Imelda Pilapil, a Filipino citizen, and Erich Geiling, a German national, were married on September 7, 1979 in Germany. After three and a half years of marriage, Erich initiated a divorce proceeding against Imelda in Germany. Later on, the German court promulgated a decree of divorce on the ground of failure of marriage of the spouses. Five months later, Erich filed two complaints for adultery alleging that Imelda had an affair with William Chia and Jesus Chua while they are still married.
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Issue: Whether Erich had legal capacity to file complaints against Imelda on the ground of adultery even though they were no longer husband and wife as a decree of divorce was already issued. Ruling: After a divorce has been decreed, the innocent spouse no longer has the right to institute proceedings against the offenders. It was clear then that prior to the filing of the case by the Erich, his marriage with Imelda had already been dissolved through a decree of divorce. Thus, the Supreme Court declared that Erich had no longer legal capacity for filing the complaints and no legal standing to commence the adultery under the imposture that he was the offended spouse at the time he filed suit. Dacasin vs. Dacasin G.R. No. 168785, February 5, 2010 Facts: On April 1994, Herald (American-petitioner) and Sharon (Filipina-respondent) got married here in the Philippines. The couple then had a child and named her Stephanie. In June of 1999, Sharon sought and obtained from the Illinois Court a divorce decree against Herald. In its ruling, the Illinois court dissolved their marriage and awarded to Sharon sole custody of Stephanie and retained jurisdiction over the case for enforcement purposes. On January 28, 2002, Herald and Sharon executed a contract (Agreement) in Manila for the joint custody of Stephanie. Two years after, Herald sued Sharon in the Regional Trial Court of Makati City, claiming that Sharon exercised sole custody over Stephanie. Sharon sought the dismissal of the complaint due to lack of jurisdiction, since Illinois Court hold the jurisdiction in enforcing the divorce decree. Issue: Whether or not the RTC of Makati had jurisdiction over the case, and whether or not the agreement they entered into was valid. Ruling: The is precluded from taking cognizance over suit considering the Illinois Courts retention of jurisdiction to enforce its divorce decree, including its order awarding sole custody of Stephanie to Sharon.

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Donio-Teves vs. Vamenta Jr., 133 SCRA 616, 625 Facts: Milagros Donio-Teves and her paramour Manuel Moreno were accused and charged of Adultery by Milagros husband Julian Teves. A preliminary investigation was conducted by the City Fiscal. After such, Milagros and Manuel filed a motion to dismiss on the ground that the City Fiscal did not have jurisdiction over the case since there was no formal complaint filed by Julian. The petition was denied and so was their motion for reconsideration after being denied the first time. Meanwhile, Julian filed a new lettercomplaint. Continuation of the PI was set at the instance of Milagros and Manuel, where they filed a motion praying that portions of the affidavits of Julians witnesses relating to adulterous acts allegedly committed outside of the jurisdiction of Dumaguete be stricken out, the same not falling within the jurisdiction of the respondent-city fiscal. While the motion was still unresolved, Julian filed an information to which a complaint thumbmarked by Julian. On the day of the scheduled arraignment, Milagros filed a motion to quash challenging the jurisdiction of the trial court over the case. During pendency of the case, Julian passed away. Another ground for Milagros and Manuel to ask for the dismissal of the case. Issue: (1) Did Juans filing of complaints after the Preliminary Investigation justify the courts cognizance over the case? (2) Does the death of the offended party extinguish the criminal liability of the offender? Ruling: (1)The fact that Julian filed no less than three complaints in order to meet the objections of Milagros and Manuel therein as to the sufficiency of his first complaint, justified the taking cognizance of the court over the case. (2) Death of the offended party is not a ground for extinguishment of criminal liability whether total or partial. The participation of the offended party is essential not for the maintenance, but solely for the initiation of the criminal action. Once a complaint is filed, the will of the offended party is ascertained and any pardon given by the offended. Bureau of Customs vs. Peter Sherman et al., G.R. No. 190487, April 13, 2011 Facts: The Mark Sensing Philippines, Inc. (MSPI) caused the importation from Australia of 225,870,000 pieces of finished bet slips and 205,200 rolls of finished thermal papers, and their transfer from the Clark Special Economic Zone (CSEZ) to the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) without paying the corresponding taxes or duties to the Bureau of Customs prompting the bureau to file a criminal complaint against the MSPI for violating
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sections 3601 vis--vis Sections 2530 (f) and (i) 5 and 101 (f) of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines, as amended by R.A. 7916. While the information filed against them before the CTA was underway, MSPI filed a petition for review before the Secretary of Justice. Only respondents Cajigal and Lingan were served warrants of arrest, following which they posted bail. The Secretary of Justice reversed the state prosecutors resolution and directed the withdrawal of the information. The Bureau appealed the case before the CA, while the prosecutor filed before the CTA a motion to withdraw information with leave of court, to which the bureau filed an opposition. MSPI on their part moved for the dismissal of the information. The CTA granted the withdrawal and dismissal of the information. The Bureau then filed a motion for reconsideration before the CTA, to which the CTA noted without action the case. Issue: Can a trial between a government agency and a private entity proceed without the presence of the Office of the Solicitor General? Ruling: By merely noting without action the Bureaus motion for reconsideration, the CTA did not gravely abuse its discretion. As already an established doctrine, a public prosecutor should have control and supervision over cases involving the government. Since the Bureau was not represented by the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) in instituting the petition before the Supreme Court, the petition was thus dismissed for lacking the imprimatur of the OSG to which the control of the prosecution of the case belongs to.

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Rule 111: Prosecution of Civil Action

Rule 111: Prosecution of Civil Action


Casupanan et al. vs. Laroya G.R. No. 145391, August 26, 2002 Facts: Mario Laroya and Avelino Casupanan figured in a car accident. Casupanans car was owned/operated by Roberto. Two cases were filed before the MCTC of Capas, Tarlac. Laroya filed a criminal case against Casupanan for reckless imprudence resulting in damage to property which was on its preliminary investigation stage when Casupanan and Capitulo filed a civil case against Laroya for quasi-delict. Upon motion of Laroya on the ground of forum-shopping (the filing of multiple suits involving the same parties for the same cause of action, either simultaneously of successively to secure a favorable judgement ), the MCTC dismissed the civil case. On Motion for Reconsideration, Casupanan and Capitulo insisted that the civil case was a separate civil action which could proceed independently of the criminal case. Casupanan and Capitulo then filed a petition for certiorari before the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Capas, Tarlac, but the RTC ruled that the order of dismissal issued by the MCTC was a final order and therefore, the proper remedy should have been an appeal, which prompted Casupanan and Capitulo to appeal to the Supreme Court. Casupanan and Capitulo said that if the accused in a criminal case has a counterclaim against the private complainant, he may file the counterclaim in a separate civil action at the proper time. They contended that an action on quasi-delict is different from an action resulting from the crime of reckless imprudence, and an accused in a criminal case can be an aggrieved party in a civil case arising from the same incident. They maintain that under Articles 31 and 2176 of the Civil Code, the civil case can proceed independently of the criminal action. They also pointed out that Casupanan was not the only one who filed the independent civil action based on a quasi-delict but also Capitulo, the owner-operator of the vehicle, who was not a party in the criminal case. Issue: Whether or not an accused in a pending criminal case for reckless imprudence can validly file, simultaneously and independently, a separate civil action for quasi-delict against the complainant in the criminal case. Ruling: The SC held that to disallow the accused from filing a separate civil action for quasidelict, while refusing to recognize his counterclaim in the criminal case, is to deny him due process of law, access to the courts, and equal protection of the law. Thus, the civil action based on quasi-delict filed separately by Casupanan and Capitulo is proper.

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Rule 111: Prosecution of Civil Action

Cheng vs. Sy G.R. No. 174238, July 7, 2009 Facts: Anita Cheng filed two (2) estafa cases before the RTC-Manila against spouses William and Tessie Sy for issuing to her two (2) bank checks, in payment of their loan, both of which were dishonored upon presentation for having been drawn against a closed account. Cheng filed against the spouses two (2) cases for violation of Batas Pambansa Bilang 22 before the MeTC-Manila. On March 16, 2004, the RTC dismissed the estafa cases for failure of the prosecution to prove the three elements of the crime. Later, the MeTC dismissed, on demurrer, the BP Blg. 22 cases on account of the failure of petitioner to identify the accused respondents in open court. On April 26, 2005, Cheng lodged against respondents before the RTC, Manila, a complaint for collection of a sum of money with damages based on the same loaned amount of P600,000.00 covered by the two PBC checks previously subject of the estafa and BP Blg. 22cases. The RTC-Manila, dismissed the complaint for lack of jurisdiction, saying that the civil action to collect the amount of P600,000.00 with damages was already impliedly instituted in the BP Blg. 22 cases in light of Section 1, paragraph (b) of Rule 111 of the Revised Rules of Court. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration which the court denied in its Order dated June 5, 2006. Issue: Whether or not the petitioner is entitled to collect the sum of money with damages based on the principle of Unjust Enrichment. Ruling: Yes, The Supreme Court took into consideration the trial courts observation when it dismissed the estafa charge, that if there was any liability on the part of respondents, it was civil in nature, and if the loan were to be proven true, the inability of Cheng to recover the loaned amount would tantamount to unjust enrichment of the spouses, as they may now conveniently evade payment of their obligation merely on account of a technicality applied against Cheng. There is unjust enrichment when (1) a person is unjustly benefited, and (2)such benefit is derived at the expense of or with damages to another. This doctrine simply means that a person shall not be allowed to profit or enrich himself inequitably at anothers expense. One condition for invoking this principle of unjust enrichment is that the aggrieved party has no other recourse based on contract, quasi-contract, crime, quasidelict or any other provision of law. Court litigations are primarily designed to search for the truth and a liberal interpretation and application of the rules which will give the parties the fullest opportunity to adduce proof is the best way to get the truth. The dispensation of justice and vindication of legitimate grievances should not be barred by technicalities. For reasons of substantial justice and equity, as the complement of the legal jurisdiction that seeks to dispense justice where courts of law, through the inflexibility of their rules and want of power to adapt their judgments to the special circumstances of cases, are incompetent to do so, the petition of Cheng is thus granted.

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Rule 111: Prosecution of Civil Action

P/Chief Inspector Fernando Billedo, et al. vs. Wilhemina Wagan, et al G.R. No. 175091, July 13, 2011 Facts: Alberto Mina, Nilo Jay Mina, and Ferdinand Caasi (the three for brevity) were arrested by the group of the petitioners (Billedo et al.) along an alley for drinking liquor in a public place. They were charged before the MeTC of Pasay City with a violation of City Ordinance No.265 (Drinking Liquor in Public Places). The three filed a civil case against Billedo et al. for damages based on their allegation that their arrest was unjustly based on the mere reports of the Cruzes. Criminal complaints were also filed against the petitioners before the City Prosecution Office and the Office of the Ombudsman for Unlawful Arrest and Violation of R.A.No. 7438 (Rights of Person Under Custodial Investigation). The CPO dismissed the case for lack of merit while the Ombudsman, in its Joint Resolution, dismissed both complaints for lack of probable cause, but recommended the filing of three corresponding criminal informations for Violation of Section 3(e), R.A. No. 3019 but the same was dismissed. The three were found guilty by the MeTC for Violation of City Ordinance No. 265 and their conviction was affirmed by the RTC. The three moved for the dismissal of the civil case alleging that it is the Sandiganbayan which had jurisdiction over the civil case and not the RTC; and that conformably to Section 4 of R.A. No. 8249, Billedo et al. were barred from filing a separate and independent civil action. Issue: Whether or not the RTC or any other courts have the jurisdiction to try civil cases given the mandatory simultaneous institution and joint determination of a civil liability with the criminal action and the express prohibition to file the said civil action separately from the criminal action as provided for under Sec. 4 of RA 8249. Ruling: The RTC did not commit any grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction in issuing the assailed orders. The subject civil case did not fall within the purview of Section 4 of R.A. No. 8249 as the latter part of this provision contemplates only two (2) situations. First, a criminal action has been instituted before the Sandiganbayan or the appropriate courts after the requisite preliminary investigation, and the corresponding civil liability must be simultaneously instituted with it. Second, the civil case, filed ahead of the criminal case, is still pending upon the filing of the criminal action, in which case, the civil case should be transferred to the court trying the criminal case for consolidation and joint determination. Section 4 of R.A. No. 8249 finds no application in this case. No criminal action was filed before the Sandiganbayan or any appropriate court. Thus, there was no appropriate court to which the subject civil case can be transferred to or consolidated with as mandated by the said provision. It is also illogical to consider the civil case as abandoned simply because the criminal cases against Billedo et al. were dismissed at the preliminary stage. A reading of the latter part of Section 4 of R.A. No. 8294 suggests that the civil case will only be considered abandoned if there is a pending criminal case and the civil case was not transferred to the court trying the criminal case for joint determination. The criminal charges against petitioners might have been dismissed at the preliminary stage for lack of probable cause, but it does not mean that the civil case instituted prior to the filing of the
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criminal complaints is already baseless as the complainants can prove their cause of action in the civil case by mere preponderance of evidence. The rule is that an order denying a motion to dismiss is merely interlocutory and, therefore, not appealable, even on pure questions of law. Neither can it be subject of a petition for review on certiorari. Such order may only be reviewed in the ordinary course of law by an appeal from the judgment after trial. The rule is founded on considerations of orderly procedure, to forestall useless appeals and avoid undue inconvenience to the appealing party by having to assail orders as they are promulgated by the court, when all such orders may be contested in a single appeal.

G.R. Nos. 155531-34 29 July 2005 RODRIGUEZ vs. PONFERRADA, ET AL. Facts: Mary Ann Rodriguez was charged with estafa and a violation of Batas Pambansa Blg. 22 (or the Bouncing Checks Law). The City Prosecutors Office found probable cause to charge Rodriguez with estafa under Article 315 paragraph 2(d) of the Revised Penal Code and a violation under BP 22. The violation of BP 22 was filed in the Metropolitan Trial Court (MeTC) of Quezon City and the docket fees were accordingly paid by the private complainant. On the other hand, the charge for estafa was filed with the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Quezon City. During the hearing for estafa in the RTC, Judge Ponferrada noted the Formal Entry of Appearance of Atty. Felix R. Solomon as a Private Prosecutor in order to pursue the civil liability against Rodriguez. Rodriguez opposed the appearance of the private prosecutor contending that he (the private prosecutor) is barred from appearing in the RTC as his appearance is limited only to the civil aspect which must be asserted in the BP 22 cases pending before the MeTC of Quezon City and not the RTC where the estafa case is assigned. The RTC allowed the private prosecutor to appear in the proceedings considering that the offended party had paid the corresponding filing fee for the estafa case prior to the filing of the BP 22 case with the MeTC of Quezon City. Issues: (1) Whether or not a Private Prosecutor can be allowed to intervene and participate in the aforementioned estafa case for the purpose of prosecuting the attached civil liability arising from the issuance of the checks involved which is also the subject matter of the BP 22 case. (2) Whether or not the civil action necessarily arising from the criminal case pending before the MTC for violation of BP 22 precludes the institution of the corresponding civil action in the criminal case for estafa now pending before the RTC.

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Rule 111: Prosecution of Civil Action

Ruling: Settled is the rule that the single act of issuing a bouncing check may give rise to two distinct criminal offenses: estafa and a violation of BP 22. The Rules of Court allow the offended party to intervene via private prosecutor in each of these two penal proceedings. However, the recovery of the civil liability, arising from the single act of issuing a bouncing check in either criminal case bars the recovery of the same civil liability in the other criminal action. While the law allows two simultaneous civil remedies for the offended party, it only authorizes recovery in one. While two crimes arise from a single set of facts, only one civil liability attaches to it. Thus, the possible single civil liability arising from the act of issuing a bouncing check can be the subject of both civil actions deemed instituted with the estafa case the prosecution of the BP 22 violation. In both crimes, Rule 111 of the Rules of Court expressly allows, even automatically in the present case, the institution of a civil action without need of election by the offended party. As both remedies are simultaneously available to the offended party, there can be no forum-shopping. In the case at bar, the institution of the civil actions with the estafa case and the inclusion of another set of civil actions along with the BP 22 case are not exactly repugnant or inconsistent with each other. Nothing in the Rules signifies that the necessary inclusion of a civil action in a criminal case for violation of BP 22 precludes the institution in an estafa case of the corresponding civil action, even if both offenses relate to the issuance of the same check. G.R. No. 175851 04 July 2012 LIM vs. MINDANAO WINES AND LIQUOR GALLERIA Facts: Emilia Lim, owner of H&E Commercial, ordered from Mindanao Wines & Liquor Galleria several cases of liquors. As evidenced by different financial statements, Mindanao Wines delivered said cases of liquors for which it received four Philippine National Bank (PNB) postdated checks worth Php 25,000.00 each issued by Emilia Lim as payment. When two of the checks bounced for reasons of Account Closed and Drawn Against Insufficient Funds, Mindanao Wines, through its proprietress Evelyn Valdevieso, demanded from H&E Commercial the payment of their value through two separate letters. When the letters were ignored, Mindanao Wines filed before the MTCC of Davao City charges against Emilia Lim for violations of Batas Pambansa Blg. 22 (BP 22). After the prosecution presented its evidence, Emilia Lim filed a Demurrer to Evidence claiming Insufficiency of Evidence, asserting that one of the elements of violation of BP 22 was not proven. The MTCC granted the Demurrer to Evidence. Hence, the MTCC acquitted Emilia Lim of the criminal charges however the MTCC still found Lim to be civilly liable because when she redeemed one of the checks during the pendency of the criminal cases, the MTCC considered the same as an acknowledgement on her part of her obligation with Mindanao Wines. Dissatisfied, Lim appealed to the RTC of Davao City, contending that her acquittal should carry with it her exoneration from civil liability since the MTCC dismissed the criminal cases on the ground of insufficient evidence. The RTC dismissed the appeal, clarifying that the MTCC dismissed the criminal cases based on reasonable doubt and not
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Rule 111: Prosecution of Civil Action

on insufficiency of evidence. While the prosecution failed to prove criminal liability beyond reasonable doubt, Lims indebtedness was nonetheless proven by a preponderance of evidence, the quantum of evidence required to prove the same. Undeterred, Lim filed an appeal before the CA still insisting that the dismissal of the criminal aspect of the case carried with it the extinguishment of the civil liability. The CA emphasized that even if acquitted, an accused may still be held civilly liable if: a) the acquittal was based on reasonable doubt; or b) the court declared that the liability of the accused is only civil. The CA explained that the MTCC acquitted Emilia because the quantum of evidence required for a finding of guilt beyond reasonable doubt was insufficient to convict her of BP 22. However, the extinction of the civil aspect does not necessarily follow such acquittal. Issue: Whether or not the dismissal of the criminal case based on the grounds of Insufficiency of Evidence and not on Reasonable Doubt carries with it the dismissal of the civil cases deemed instituted therein. Ruling: Notwithstanding her acquittal, Emilia Lim is civilly liable. In civil cases, the extinction of the penal action does not carry with it the extinction of the civil liability where the acquittal is based on reasonable doubt as only preponderance of evidence is required. On this basis, Emilia insists that the MTCC dismissed the BP 22 cases against her not on the ground of reasonable doubt but on insufficiency of evidence. Hence, the civil liability should likewise be extinguished. Emilias Demurrer to Evidence, however, betrays this claim. Asserting insufficiency of evidence as a ground for granting said demurrer, Emilia herself argued therein that the prosecution has not proven her guilt beyond reasonable doubt. In any case, even if the Court treats the subject dismissal as one based on insufficiency of evidence as Emilia wants to put it, the same is still tantamount to a dismissal based on reasonable doubt. G.R. No. 102007 02 September 1994 PEOPLE vs. BAYOTAS Facts: Rogelio Bayotas was charged with rape in a criminal case filed before Branch 16, Regional Trial Court of Roxas City. He was eventually convicted. Pending the appeal of his conviction, Bayotas died at the National Bilibid Hospital due to cardio respiratory arrest secondary to hepatic encephalopathy secondary to hipato carcinoma gastric malingering. As a result, the Supreme Court, in its resolution, dismissed the criminal aspect of the appeal. However, it required the Sol-Gen to file its comment with regard to Bayotas civil liability arising from his commission of the offense charged. In his comment, the Sol-Gen opined that the death of the accused-appellant did not extinguish his civil liability as a result of his commission of the offense charged. The Sol-Gen insists that the appeal should still be resolved for the purpose of reviewing his conviction by the lower court on which the civil liability is based.
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Rule 111: Prosecution of Civil Action

Counsel for the accused-appellant opposed the view of the Sol-Gen, arguing that the death of the accused while judgment of conviction is pending appeal extinguishes both his criminal and civil liabilities. In support of this position, said counsel invoked the ruling of the CA in People vs. Castillo and Ocfemia which held that the civil obligation in a criminal case takes root in the criminal liability and therefore, civil liability is extinguished if the accused should die before final judgment is rendered. Issue: Whether or not the death of the accused pending appeal of his conviction extinguishes his civil liability. Ruling: YES. Art. 89 (1) of the Revised Penal Code provides that criminal liability is totally extinguished by the death of the convict, as to the personal penalties; and as to the pecuniary penalties, liability therefore is extinguished only when the death of the offender occurs before final judgment. In pursuing recovery of civil liability arising from crime, the final determination of the criminal liability is a condition precedent to the prosecution of the civil action, such that when the criminal action is extinguished by the demise of the accused-appellant pending appeal thereof, said civil action cannot survive. The claim for civil liability springs out of and is dependent upon facts which, if true, would constitute a crime. Such civil liability is an inevitable consequence of criminal liability and is to be declared and enforced in the criminal proceeding. Upon death of the accused pending appeal of his conviction, the criminal action is extinguished inasmuch as there is no longer a defendant to stand as the accused; the civil action instituted therein for recovery of civil liability ex delicto is ipso facto extinguished, grounded as it is on the criminal. G.R. No. L-50691 05 December 1994 238 SCRA 655 FONACIER vs. SANDIGANBAYAN Facts: Eusebio Fonacier, the Supervising Civil Engineer, together with eight other public officers of the Benguet Highway Engineering District under the then Ministry of Public Highways and Francisco T. Del Moral, a private contractor, were charged before the then Court of First Instance of Baguio for violation of Section 3, paragraph (e), of Republic Act No. 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, and for estafa through falsification of public documents. The charges were spawned by the reported ghost project in 1978 regarding repairs to be undertaken for the repair of the Halsema (Baguio-Bontoc) Highway. Because of suspected irregularities and anomalies in the project, a special panel conducted an investigation. Following the panels investigation, a formal charge was filed against the accused. In its questioned decision, the Sandiganbayan found that there was no regular or legitimate program of work in accordance with standard operating procedures for the project item. All things considered, the SB held that Section 3(e) of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act had indeed been violated by the nine (9) of the accused who acted in
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conspiracy to defraud the government in the amount of P 96,903.00, through the utilization of fictitious and/or fraudulent public documents. In its disposition, the SB found Fonacier, Paragas, Gonzales, Ramos, Villanueva, Padilla, Sarmiento, Almoite, and del Moral guilty beyond reasonable doubt for violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and were further ordered to indemnify the Government, jointly and severally, the amount of P96,903.00 and to pay the cost of the proceedings. In particular, del Morals counsel filed a motion to dismiss the petition for review on certiorari on the ground that petitioner del Moral had died on 08 October 1980. The Sol-Gen commented that petitioners appeal should only be dismissed insofar as his criminal liability is concerned. On 29 January 1981, the Court dismissed the petition only with regard to Del Morals criminal liability and entry judgment was made on 09 March 1981. Issue: Whether or not the death of the accused pending appeal of his conviction extinguishes his civil liability. Ruling: Following the decision in the case of People vs. Bayotas, promulgated 02 September 1994, the Court has likewise held that the death of Del Moral has extinguished his civil liability based on ex delicto. The Court now reiterates that: 1. Death of the accused pending appeal of his conviction extinguishes his criminal liability as well as the civil liability based solely thereon. As opined by Justice Regalado, in this regard, "the death of the accused prior to final judgment terminates his criminal liability and only the civil liability directly arising from and based solely on the offense committed, i.e., civil liability ex delicto in senso strictiore." 2. Corollarily, the claim for civil liability survives notwithstanding the death of the accused if the same may also be predicated on a source of obligation other than delict such as: 1) Law 2) Contracts 3) Quasi-contracts 4) Delicts (such as in this case) 5) Quasi-delicts PIMENTEL vs. PEOPLE G.R. No. 172060 13 September 2010 Facts: On 25 October 2004, Maria Chrysantine Pimentel filed an action for frustrated parricide against Joselito R. Pimentel before the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City, which was raffled to Branch 223. Subsequently, on 07 February 2005, Jose Pimentel received a summons to appear before the Regional Trial Court, Branch 72 of Antipolo City for the pretrial and trial of a civil case for Declaration of Nullity of Marriage under Section 36 of the Family Code on the ground of psychological incapacity.
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Jurisdiction

On 11 February 2005, Jose Pimentel filed an urgent motion to suspend the proceedings before the RTC of Quezon City on the ground of the existence of a prejudicial question. Jose Pimentel asserts that since the relationship between the offender and the victim is a key element in parricide, the outcome of the civil case filed in the RTC of Antipolo City would have a bearing in the criminal case filed against him before the RTC in Quezon City. The RTC of Quezon City issued an order holding that the pendency of the case in the RTC of Antipolo City is not a prejudicial question that warrants the suspension of the criminal case before it. Pimentel filed a Motion for Reconsideration but the RTC of Quezon City denied the motion. Undeterred, Pimentel filed a petition for certiorari with the Court of Appeals. In its decision, the CA dismissed the petition ruling that in the case for frustrated parricide, all that is required is that at the time of the commission of the crime, the marriage was still subsisting. On the other hand, the issue in the civil action for annulment of marriage is whether petitioner Jose Pimentel is psychologically incapacitated to comply with the essential marital obligations. Issue: Whether or not the resolution of the action for annulment of marriage is a prejudicial question that warrants the suspension of the criminal case for frustrated parricide against petitioner Jose Pimentel. Ruling: NO. Section 7, Rule 111 of the 2000 Rules on Criminal Procedure provides: Section 7. Elements of Prejudicial Question. - The elements of a prejudicial question are: (a) the previously instituted civil action involves an issue similar or intimately related to the issue raised in the subsequent criminal action and (b) the resolution of such issue determines whether or not the criminal action may proceed. The rule is clear that the civil action must first be instituted before the filing of the criminal action. In the case at bar, the institution of the criminal action happened before the institution of the civil action. As such, the requirement of Section 7, Rule 111 of the 2000 Rules of Criminal Procedure was not met since the civil action was filed subsequent to the filing of the criminal action. Further, the resolution of the civil action is not a prejudicial question that would warrant the suspension of the criminal action because the issues between the civil case and the criminal case are not intimately related. The issue in the civil case for annulment of marriage under Art. 36 of the Family Code is whether petitioner Jose Pimentel is psychologically incapacitated to comply with the essential marital obligations. In frustrated parricide, the issue is whether he performed all acts of execution which would have killed his wife as a consequence but which, nevertheless did not produce it by reason of causes independent of the will of the petitioner Jose Pimentels will. The subsequent dissolution of their marriage, in case the petition in the civil case was granted, will have no effect on the alleged crime that was committed at the time of the subsistence of marriage. In short, even if petitioner Jose
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Jurisdiction

Pimentel and his wife, respondent Maria Chrysantine Pimentel were annulled, he could still be held criminally liable since at the time of the alleged commission of the crime, their marriage was still subsisting. DREAMWORK CONSTRUCTION, INC. vs. JANIOLA G.R. No. 184861 30 June 2009 Facts: On 18 October 2004, Dreamwork Construction, Inc. (DCI), through its President, Roberto S. Concepcion and Vice-President for Finance and Marketing, Normandy P. Amora, filed a Complaint Affidavit for violation of Batas Pambansa Blg. 22 (BP 22) against Cleofe Janiola with the Office of the City Prosecutor of Las Pias City. Correspondingly, DCI filed a criminal information for violation of BP 22 against Janiola with the MTC. On 20 September 2006, Janiola, joined by her husband, instituted a civil complaint against DCI by filing a Complaint for the rescission of an alleged construction agreement between the parties, as well as for damages. The case was filed in the RTC of Las Pias City and docketed as a civil case. Notably, the checks, subject of the criminal cases before the MTC, were issued in consideration of the construction agreement. Thereafter, on 25 July 2007, Janiola filed a Motion to Suspend Proceedings, alleging that the civil case posed a prejudicial question as against the criminal cases. Petitioner DCI opposed the suspension of the proceedings arguing that the criminal case preceded the civil case. Later, the MTC granted the Motion to Suspend Proceedings. DCI filed a Motion for Reconsideration but was denied. DCI appealed the order to the RTC but was also denied. Issue: Whether or not the court a quo erred in ruling to suspend proceedings in the criminal case on the basis of prejudicial question. Ruling: YES. A prejudicial question is understood in law as that which must precede the criminal action and which requires a decision before a final judgment can be rendered in the criminal action with which said question is closely connected. The civil action must be instituted prior to the criminal action. It bears pointing out that the circumstances present in the instant case indicate that the filing of the civil action and the subsequent move to suspend the criminal proceedings by reason of the presence of a prejudicial question were a mere afterthought and instituted to delay the criminal proceedings. In any event, even if the civil case here was instituted prior to the criminal action, there is still no prejudicial question to speak of that would justify the suspension of the proceedings of the criminal case. Verily, even if the trial court in the civil case declares that the construction agreement between the parties is void for lack of consideration, this would not affect the prosecution of private respondent in the criminal case. The fact of the matter is that private respondent indeed issued checks which were subsequently dishonored for insufficient funds. It is this fact that is subject of prosecution under BP 22.
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Jurisdiction

Therefore, it is clear that the second element required for the existence of a prejudicial question, that the resolution of the issue in the civil action would determine whether the criminal action may proceed, is absent in the instant case. Thus, no prejudicial question exists and the rules on it are inapplicable to the case before the Court. YAP vs. PARAS G.R. No. 101236 20 January 1992 Facts: Petitioner Juliana Yap was the sister of respondent Martin Paras. According to Yap, Paras sold to her his share in the intestate estate for P 300.00 on 31 October 1971. The sale was evidenced by a private document. Nineteen years later, on 02 May 1990, Paras sold the same property to Santiago Saya-ang for P5,000.00 and the sale was evidenced by a notarized Deed of Absolute Sale. When Yap learned of the second sale, she filed a complaint for estafa against Paras and Saya-ang with the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor of General Santos City. On the same date, she filed a complaint for the nullification of the said sale with the Regional Trial Court of General Santos City. After investigation, the Provincial Prosecutor instituted a criminal complaint for estafa against Paras with the Municipal Circuit Trial Court of GlanMalapatan, South Cotabato, presided by Judge Alfredo D. Barcelona, Sr. Before the arraignment of the accused, the trial judge motu proprio issued an order dismissing the case on the ground that there is a prejudicial question to the civil action, which must be ventilated in the proper civil court. Petitioner Juliana Yap moved for reconsideration but was denied. Issue: Whether or not where there is a prejudicial question in a civil case, the criminal action may not be dismissed but only suspended. Moreover, the suspension may not be done motu proprio by the judge trying the criminal case but only upon petition of the defendant in accordance with the Rules of Court. Ruling: Section 6, Rule 111 of the Rules on Criminal Procedure provides as follows: Sec. 6. Suspension by reason of prejudicial question. A petition for the suspension of the criminal action based upon the pendency of a prejudicial question in a civil action may be filed in the office of the prosecutor or the court conducting the preliminary investigation. When the criminal action has been filed in court for trial, the petition to suspend shall be filed in the same criminal action at any time before the prosecution rests. The rule plainly says that the suspension may be made only upon petition and not at the instance of the judge alone. It also says suspension, and not dismissal. For a civil case to be considered prejudicial to a criminal action as to cause the suspension of the criminal action pending the determination of the civil action, it must appear not only that the civil
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Jurisdiction

case involves the same facts upon which the criminal prosecution is based, but also that the resolution of the issues raised in said civil action would be necessarily determinative of the guilt or innocence of the accused. It is the issue in the civil action that is prejudicial to the continuation of the criminal action, not the criminal action that is prejudicial to the civil action. It is worth remarking that not every defense raised in the civil action will raise a prejudicial question to justify suspension of the criminal action. The defense must involve an issue similar to or intimately related to the same issue raised in the criminal action and its resolution should determine whether or not the latter action may proceed.

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47

Rule 112: Preliminary Investigation


CRESPO vs. MOGUL G.R. No. 53373 30 June 1987 Facts: On 18 April 1977, the Provincial Fiscal filed an Information for estafa against Mario Crespo. When the case was set for arraignment, Crespo filed a Motion to Defer Arraignment on the ground that there was a pending petition for review filed with the Secretary of Justice. In an Order, presiding judge, Leodgario Mogul, denied the motion and set the arraignment. A petition for certiorari and prohibition with prayer for a preliminary writ of injunction was filed by Crespo in the CA which was eventually granted while perpetually restraining the judge from enforcing his threat to compel the arraignment of Crespo in the case until the Department of Justice shall have finally solved the petition for review. The Undersecretary of Justice reversed the resolution of the Office of the Provincial Fiscal and directed the fiscal to move for the immediate dismissal of the Information filed against Crespo but respondent Judge Mogul denied the motion. Issue: Whether the trial court, acting on a motion to dismiss a criminal case filed by the Provincial Fiscal upon instructions of the Secretary of Justice to whom the case was elevated for review, may refuse to grant the motion and insist on the arraignment and trial on the merits. Ruling: YES. It is through the conduct of a preliminary investigation that the fiscal determines the existence of a prima facie that would warrant the prosecution of a case. It is a cardinal principle that criminal actions either commenced by complaint or by Information shall be prosecuted under the direction and control of the fiscal. The preliminary investigation conducted by the fiscal for the purpose of determining whether a prima facie case exists warranting the prosecution of the accused is terminated upon the filing of the Information in the proper court. In turn, the filing of said information sets in motion the criminal action against the accused in court. Should the fiscal find it proper to conduct a reinvestigation of the case, at such stage, the permission of the court must be secured. PEOPLE vs. MONTEVERDE G.R. No. L-60962 11 July 1986 142 SCRA 68 Facts: Rolando Monteverde and his co-accused Reynaldo Codera Jr. were found guilty by the Court of First Instance of Zamboanga of the crime robbery with rape and were sentenced to death. According to spouses Tomas and Teresita, Monteverde and Codera

forced entry upon their home, tied and gagged Tomas, placed him under the bed, and then intimated Teresita with the use of a knife and gun and raped her three times (twice for Monteverde and once for Codera). At about 4:00 in the same morning, they ransacked the house and left with their loot valued at P300.00 and with cash valued at P15.00. When the victims-spouses went to the police station for identification of arrested suspects, they immediately identified Reynaldo Codera Jr. as one of the two culprits who had committed the crimes. Teresita also unhesitatingly pointed to Rolando Monteverde in a picture shown to her, as the very same person who was the other culprit. Finding the spouses testimonies to be credible, the trial court convicted Monteverde and Codera as charged and sentenced them to death. Monteverde assails the spouses credibility and claims, among other things, that the lower courts proceedings are void because the amended information does not contain a certification of his cross-examination. Issue: Whether the lower courts proceedings are void because the amended information does not contain a certification of Monteverdes cross-examination as part of the preliminary investigation. Ruling: NO. While generally, a preliminary investigation is mandatory and a certification that such investigation was held is required, still this rule does not apply if the issue is raised only after conviction. Thus, it has been held that after a plea of not guilty to the Information, an accused is deemed to have foregone the right of preliminary investigation and to have abandoned the right to question any irregularity that surrounds it. PEOPLE vs. SELFAISON G.R. No. L-14732 28 January 1961 110 Phil. 839 Facts: Josefino Selfaison, Nemesio Dalisay, Domingo Ureta, and Bernardo Bautista, together with four others who are still at large, were charged with the crime of robbery with rape in the Court of First Instance of Capiz. After trial, Selfaison was found guilty and was sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua, to indemnify the complainants Sinag and Maghibon, and to pay one-fourth of the cost. The other three accused namely, Dalisay, Ireta, and Bautista were found guilty of the crime of rape and were sentenced to suffer an indeterminate penalty of 12 years, 4 months, and 1 day to 17 years, 4 months, and 1 day, plus proportionate costs. Prosecution shows that private complainants Sinag and Maghibon filed separate complaints in the Justice of the Peace Court of Nabas for robbery with rape. Selfaison, Dalisay, Ureta, and Bautista were named as the complainants. After preliminary investigation, warrants of arrest were issued against the accused. As the returns on the warrants stated that there were no persons answering to the names stated in the warrant, the private prosecutor filed a joint motion to correct the complaints and the motion was
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granted. Selfaison, Dalisay, Bautista, and Ureta were arrested but the other accused remained at large. Trial then proceeded, finding accused Selfaison guilty of robbery with rape and the other three accused, guilty of rape. On appeal, the accused contends that they were deprived of their right to preliminary investigation. Issue: Whether the accused were actually deprived of their right to preliminary investigation. Ruling: NO. The contention deserves scant consideration, for nothing appears permanently on the record that such preliminary investigation has not been had. On the other hand, it is presumed that the inferior court proceeded in accordance with law. At any rate, appellants appear to have waived such right, because immediately after their arrest, they filed bonds for their release and subsequently proceeded to trial, without previously claiming that they did not have the benefit of a preliminary investigation. ROLITO GO vs. CA G.R. No. 101837 11 February 1992 206 SCRA 138 Facts: An Information was filed charging Rolito Go for murder before the Regional Trial Court of Metro Manila . Evidence for the prosecution shows that petitioner Go, while travelling in the wrong direction of a one-way street, almost had a collision with another vehicle. Petitioner Go thereafter got out of his car, shot the driver of the other vehicle, and drove off. Six days later, petitioner Go voluntarily presented himself, together with his two lawyers, in the police station. Subsequently, a criminal charge was brought against him. Petitioner Go posted bail and the prosecutor filed the case to the lower court, setting and commencing the trial without preliminary investigation. The Prosecutor cited Section 7, Rule 112 and Section 5, Rule 113 of the 1985 Rules of Criminal Procedure, reasoning out that Go has waived his right to preliminary investigation because bail has been posted and that under such situations, the petitioner has been arrested without a warrant lawfully. Petitioner Go assails such procedure and actions undertaken in his certiorari, and files for a preliminary investigation. Issue: Whether petitioner Go effectively waived his right to preliminary investigation by his action of posting bail. Ruling: NO. Petitioner Go was not arrested at all. When he walked into the police station, he neither expressed surrender nor any statement that he was or was not guilty of any crime. When a complaint was filed to the prosecutor, preliminary investigation should have been
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scheduled to determine probable cause. The prosecutor made a substantive error and petitioner Go is entitled to preliminary investigation. The petition is granted and the prosecutor is ordered to conduct the preliminary investigation. The trial for the criminal case is suspended pending result from the preliminary investigation. GIAN PAULO VILLAFLOR vs. DINDO VIVAR y GOZON G.R. No. 134744 January 16, 2001 Facts: An information for slight physical injuries was filed against Respondent Dindo Vivar on February 7, 1997. The case arose from the alleged mauling of Petitioner Gian Paulo Villaflor by respondent outside a certain bar. After the severe beating he took from respondent, petitioner again met respondent who told him, "Sa susunod gagamitin ko na itong baril ko" ("Next time, I will use my gun on you"). When the injuries sustained by petitioner turned out to be more serious than they had appeared at first, an information for more serious physical injuries was filed against respondent. And the earlier charge of slight physical injuries was withdrawn. At the same time, information for grave threats was filed against respondent. Thereafter, respondent posted a cash bond of P6,000 in the case for serious physical injuries. However, instead of filing a counter-affidavit as required by the trial court, he filed a Motion to Quash the Information in Criminal Case of grave threats. He contended that the latter should have absorbed the threat, having been made in connection with the charge of serious physical injuries. Thus, he concluded, Criminal Case of grave threats should be dismissed, as the trial court did not acquire jurisdiction over it. However, the MTC denied the motion to quash. A Motion for Reconsideration was filed by Respondent but was also denied by the MTC. Thus, he was duly arraigned in Criminal Case for grave threats, and he pleaded not guilty. Issues: Whether or not the court motu propio can order the dismissal of two (2) criminal cases for serious physical injuries and grave threats on the ground that the public prosecutor failed to conduct a preliminary investigation? Whether or not the failure of the public prosecutor to conduct a preliminary investigation be considered a ground to quash the criminal Informations for serious physical injuries and grave threats filed against the accused-respondent? Ruling: A component part of due process in criminal justice is the preliminary investigation which is a statutory and substantive right accorded to the accused before trial. To deny their claim to a preliminary investigation would be to deprive them of the full measure of their right to due process. However, the court held that the absence of a preliminary investigation does not impair the validity of the information or otherwise render it defective. Neither does it affect the jurisdiction of the court or constitute a ground for quashing the information. The trial court, instead of dismissing the information, should hold in abeyance the proceedings and
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order the public prosecutor to conduct a preliminary investigation. Hence, the RTC in this case erred when it dismissed the two criminal cases for serious physical injuries and grave threats on the ground that the public prosecutor had failed to conduct a preliminary investigation. As previously stated, the absence of a preliminary investigation does not impair the validity of the information or otherwise render it defective. Neither does it affect the jurisdiction of the court over the case or constitute a ground for quashing the information. Section 3, Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure provides the grounds on which an accused can move to quash the complaint or information. In case at bar, nowhere in the above-mentioned section is there any mention of a lack of a preliminary investigation as a ground for a motion to quash. Moreover, such motion is a prohibited pleading under Section 19 of the Revised Rules on Summary Procedure. In the present case, the RTC therefore erred in granting herein respondent's Motion to Quash. Furthermore, the court stress that the failure of the accused to assert any ground for a motion to quash before arraignment, either because he had not filed the motion or had failed to allege the grounds therefor, shall be deemed a waiver of such grounds. In the present case, he waived his right to file such motion when he pleaded not guilty to the charge of grave threats. G.R. No. 130644 March 13, 1998 THE MINOR FRANCISCO JUAN LARRANAGA, Represented in this Suit by his mother, MARGARITA G. LARRANAGA, vs. COURT OF APPEALS and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES Facts: Petitioner Francisco Juan Larranaga is charged with two counts of kidnapping and serious illegal detention pending before the Regional Trial Court. Petitioner, represented by his mother, Margarita G. Larranaga, filed with this Court a petition for certiorari, prohibition and mandamus with writs of preliminary prohibitory and mandatory injunction. Petitioner alleged that he was denied the right to preliminary investigation and sought to annul the informations as well as the warrant of arrest issued in consequence thereof. In the alternative, petitioner prayed that a preliminary investigation be conducted and that he be released from detention pending the investigation. 1 Petitioner filed a supplemental petition for habeas corpus or bail. The Solicitor General filed a manifestation and motion in lieu of comment submitting that petitioner should have been given a regular preliminary investigation before the filing of the informations and the issuance of the warrant of arrest. The Solicitor General recommended that petitioner be accorded his right to preliminary investigation and that he be released from detention during the pendency thereof. But the prosecutors argue that petitioner is entitled only to an inquest investigation under Section 7 of Rule 112 since he was lawfully arrested without a warrant under Section 5, Rule 113 of the Revised Rules of Court. Moreover, the prosecutors argue that petitioner was actually committing a crime at the time of the arrest since kidnapping with serious illegal detention is a continuing crime.
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Issue:

Whether or not the petitioner is entitled to a regular preliminary investigation

Ruling: The court ruled in affirmative. Section 7 of Rule 112 applies only to persons lawfully arrested without a warrant. Petitioner in this case was, in the first place, not arrested either by a peace officer or a private person. An arrest is defined as the taking of a person into custody in order that he may be bound to answer for the commission of an offense. It is made by an actual restraint of the person to be arrested, or by his submission to the custody of the person making the arrest. An arrest signifies restraint on person, depriving one of his own will and liberty, binding him to become obedient to the will of the law. In case at bar, the foregoing facts show no restraint upon the person of petitioner. Neither do they show that petitioner was deprived of his own will and liberty. Hence, Section 7 of Rule 112 does not apply to petitioner. To be sure, even if petitioner were arrested by the PNP CIG personnel, such arrest would still be illegal because of the absence of a warrant. In fact, it does not appear in the case at bar that petitioner has just committed, is actually committing or is attempting to commit an offense when the police officers tried to arrest him on September 15, 1997. In fact, petitioner was attending classes at the Center for Culinary Arts at that time. ALVAREZ ARO YUSOP vs. THE HONORABLE SANDIGANBAYAN . G.R. No. 138859-60 February 22, 2001 Facts: Two informations were filed with the Sandiganbayan. One is a criminal case for the violation of Section 3-A of RA 3019 and second is for unlawful arrest under Article 269 of the Revised Penal Code. The case arose when the Office of the Ombudsman-Mindanao issued an Order against respondents. The Order also required respondents, within ten days from receipt thereof, to submit their counter-affidavits and other pieces of controverting evidence. The Office of the Ombudsman for Mindanao issued a Resolution recommending the prosecution of the aforesaid respondents for violation of Article 269 of the Revised Penal Code and Section 3-a in relation to Section 3-e of Republic Act No. 3019, as amended. Significantly, the name of Petitioner Alvarez A. Yusop was included as one of the persons to be prosecuted, although he was not one of the original respondents mentioned in the Order. Apparently, the Ombudsman approved the recommendation. So an Order of Arrest was issued by the Sandiganbayan for violation of section 3-e of R.A 3019. However, petitioner posted a bail bond before the RTC. On the same day, he filed a Motion To Remand Case To The Ombudsman - Mindanao For Preliminary Investigation. In a resolution, the Sandiganbayan denied the Motion of petitioner for his alleged failure to submit himself to the jurisdiction of the anti-graft court. On August 8, 1998, petitioner filed a Motion to Dismiss on the ground of the lack of preliminary investigation. But the Sandiganbayan resolved not to take action on the Motion and proceeded with the
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arraignment. The Sandiganbayan ruled that the accused, despite notice of the existence of the accusation against him, had not given any timely notice nor any statement of any alleged inadequacy of the proceeding regarding the filing of the Information herein. Issues: 1. Whether or not the accused is entitled to a Preliminary Investigation 2. Whether or not the case should be dismissed because of lack of preliminary investigation Ruling: The Court explained that the rationale of preliminary investigation is to protect the accused from the inconvenience, expense and burden of defending himself in a formal trial unless the reasonable probability of his guilt shall have been first ascertained in a fairly summary proceeding by a competent officer. The Rules of Court requires such investigation before an information for an offense punishable by at least 4 years, 2 months and 1 day may be filed in court. The old Rules, on the other hand, mandate preliminary investigation of an offense cognizable by the RTC. In case at bar, petitioner is charged with violation of Section 3-a of RA of 3019. Such offense is punishable with, among other penalties, imprisonment of 6 years and 1 month to 15 years. Under the aforecited rules, whether in the old or the revised version, he is entitled to a preliminary investigation. The court finds no basis for the Sandiganbayan's ruling that petitioner had not given timely notice nor any statement of the alleged inadequacy of the proceeding regarding the filing of the Information. There was no showing that petitioner was notified of the charges filed by the Ombudsman. His name did not even appear in the caption of its Resolution which recommended the filing of charges against the accused. The court held that the petition is meritorious in part. While petitioner is entitled to preliminary investigation, the case against him should not be dismissed. Nowhere in the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, or even the old Rules, is there any mention that this lack is a ground for a motion to quash. Furthermore, it has been held that responsibility for the "absence of preliminary investigation does not go to the jurisdiction of the court but merely to the regularity of the proceeding. If there were no preliminary investigations and the defendants, before entering their plea, invite the attention of the court of their absence, the court, instead of dismissing the information, should conduct such investigation, order the fiscal to conduct it or remand the case to the inferior court so the preliminary investigation may be conducted. BARTOLOME F. MERCADO vs. The Honorable COURT OF APPEALS G.R. No. 109036 July 5, 1995 Facts: Petitioner is the accused in Criminal Case for violation of B.P. Blg. 22 or Bouncing Check Law before the RTC. Petitioner moved to defer his arraignment on the ground that he was not notified of the preliminary investigation. He claimed that the private complainant deliberately provided a wrong address in the issuance of the subpoena to him.
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He was thus prevented from submitting his counter-affidavit, which if considered, would have prevented the filing of the criminal case against him. Petitioner alleged that the trial court granted his motion to defer the arraignment and ordered the remand of the case for reinvestigation. However, in the order that was issued, the trial court only directed the prosecution to comment on the motion. So petitioner moved to cancel his arraignment but his motion to defer the arraignment was denied and upon his refusal to enter a plea, respondent judge entered for him a plea of "not guilty." Therefore, petitioner filed a petition for prohibition and mandamus with the CA to prevent respondent judge from proceeding with the trial but the CA dismissed the petition. On the other hand, the prosecutor claimed that the subpoena was sent to the actual residence of petitioner at that time but the same was returned unserved. In fact, in the official receipt of his cash bond petitioner acknowledged his address which was the same address contained in the subpoena. He added that the presence of petitioner was not indispensable to the validity of the preliminary investigation, as long as efforts were exerted to notify him and he was given an opportunity to controvert the evidence against him. Issue: Whether not a preliminary investigation be conducted ex-parte by reason of the lack of notice to the respondent is valid where such omission is due to the deliberate misinformation of the complainant regarding the address of the respondent Ruling: The court sees no merit in the petition. Petitioner was not denied of his right to a preliminary investigation. It is undisputed that a subpoena was sent to his given address but it was returned unserved. Petitioner did not dispute that the address appearing in the official receipt of his cash bond was his address. The purpose of a preliminary investigation is for the investigating prosecutor to determine if a crime has been committed. A review of the evidence is thus necessary to establish probable cause and if the evidence so warrants, the investigating prosecutor is duty bound to file the corresponding information (Cruz, Jr. v. People, 233 SCRA 439 [1994]). It was established by the complainant that petitioner issued a check which was dishonored because the account had been closed. The evidence satisfies the finding of probable cause. It must be borne in mind that the preliminary investigation is not the proper forum for an exhaustive production of evidence (Cruz, Jr. v. People,supra). The court also held that no irregularity in the ex-parte conduct of the proceedings. The court ruled that preliminary investigations can be conducted ex-parte if the respondent 1cannot be subpoenaed or 2does not appear after due notice (New Rules on Criminal Procedure, Rule 112, Section 3(d); Cf. Rodriguez v. Sandiganbayan, 120 SCRA 659 [1983]). The court added that the New Rules on Criminal Procedure does not require, as a condition sine qua non to the validity of the proceedings in the preliminary investigation, the presence of the accused for as long as efforts to reach him were made, and an opportunity to controvert the evidence of the complainant is accorded him.
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RENATO CUDIA vs. THE COURT OF APPEALS 284 SCRA 173 Facts: On June 28, 1989, petitioner was arrested by members of the then 174th PC Company, allegedly for possessing an unlicensed revolver. He was brought to Camp Pepito at Angeles City, Pampanga where he was detained. A preliminary investigation was thereafter conducted by an investigating panel of prosecutors. As a result thereof, the City Prosecutor of Angeles City filed an information against him for illegal possession of firearms and ammunition. The case was raffled to Branch 60 of the Regional Trial Court of Angeles City. Upon his arraignment, petitioner pleaded not guilty to the charges. During the ensuing pretrial, the court called the attention of the parties to the fact that, contrary to the information, petitioner had committed the offense in Mabalacat, and not in Angeles City. Therafter, the judge ordered the re-raffling of the case to a branch assigned to criminal cases involving crimes committed outside of the city. On October 31, 1989 however, the provincial prosecutor of Pampanga also filed an information charging petitioner with the same crime of illegal possession of firearms and ammunition. The case was likewise raffled to Branch 56 of the Angeles City RTC. This prompted the prosecutor in Criminal Case to file a Motion to Dismiss/Withdraw the Information because the Provincial Prosecutor had filed its own information against the accused, as a result of which two separate informations for the same offense had been filed against petitioner. On May 21, 1990, petitioner filed a Motion to Quash Criminal Case on the ground that his continued prosecution for the offense of illegal possession of firearms and ammunition for which he had been arraigned, and which had been dismissed despite his opposition would violate his right not to be put twice in jeopardy of punishment for the same offense. However, the trial court denied the motion to quash; hence, petitioner raised the issue to the Court of Appeals. The appellate court, stating that there was no double jeopardy, dismissed the same on the ground that the petitioner could not have been convicted under the first information as the same was defective. Petitioners motion for reconsideration was denied; hence, this appeal. Issue: Whether or not the City Prosecutor has the authority to first file the information

Ruling: It is thus the Provincial Prosecutor of Pampanga, not the City Prosecutor, who should prepare informations for offenses committed within Pampanga but outside of Angeles City. An information, when required to be filed by a public prosecuting officer, cannot be filed by another. It must be exhibited or presented by the prosecuting attorney or someone authorized by law. If not, the court does not acquire jurisdiction. Petitioner, however, insists that his failure to assert the lack of authority of the City Prosecutor in filing the information in question is deemed a waiver thereof. As correctly pointed out by the CA, petitioners plea to an information before he filed a motion to quash may be a waiver of all objections to it insofar as formal objections to the pleadings are concerned. But by clear implication, if not by express provision of the Rules of Court, and
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by a long line of uniform decisions, questions relating to want of jurisdiction may be raised at any stage of the proceeding. It is a valid information signed by a competent officer which, among other requisites, confers jurisdiction on the court over the person of the accused (herein petitioner) and the subject matter of the accusation. In consonance with this view, an infirmity in the information, such as lack of authority of the officer signing it, cannot be cured by silence, acquiescence, or even by express consent. In fine, there must have been a valid and sufficient complaint or information in the former prosecution. If, therefore, the complaint or information was insufficient because it was so defective in form or substance that the conviction upon it could not have been sustained, its dismissal without the consent of the accused cannot be pleaded. As the fiscal had no authority to file the information, the dismissal of the first information would not be a bar to petitioners subsequent prosecution. Jeopardy does not attach where a defendant pleads guilty to a defective indictment that is voluntarily dismissed by the prosecution. G.R. No. 116623 March 23, 1995 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES and HONORABLE ALFREDO GUSTILO vs. COURT OF APPEALS and ESAM GADI y ABDULLAH (Landmark case) Facts: Esam Gadi, a national of Saudi Arabia, was apprehended at the Manila International Airport and subsequently detained for possession of marijuana. Thereafter, an information was filed charging Esam Gadi with violation of section 81 Article 11, of the Dangerous Drugs Act, as amended. Three (3) days later, Esam Gadi filed an "Ex Parte Motion to Reduce Bail," but was denied. So Esam Gadi filed a motion for reinvestigation claiming that the seriousness of the offense charged warranted the grant of his motion. Admitting that this motion was filed beyond the five-day period prescribed in Section 7, Rule 112 of the Rules of Court, he contended that the reglementary period was not mandatory. However, the motion for "reinvestigation" was denied by the trial court. He then challenged the denial of his motion for "reinvestigation" in a petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals. The CA granted the petition and reversed the trial court Order denying reinvestigation. The CA held that the five-day period for asking reinvestigation was only permissive, considering the use of the word "may. On the other hand, the Solicitor General contends that it is a mandatory rule that a motion for preliminary investigation be filed within five (5) days from the time the accused had learned of the filing of the information. It is also maintained that Esam Gadi had waived his right to preliminary investigation when he posted bail for his release. Issue: 1. Whether or not the motion for reconsideration of the respondent be granted since the reglementary period is not mandatory in accordance with Section 7, Rule 112 of the Rules of court 2. Whether or not Esam Gadi is entitled to Preliminary Investigation

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Ruling: The Court finds that the Court of Appeals fell into reversible error in granting the motion for "reinvestigation" of private respondent. The period for filing a motion for preliminary investigation after an information has been filed against an accused who was arrested without a warrant has been characterized as mandatory by the Court. The court also added that if the accused did not exercise his right within the five-day period, his motion for "reinvestigation" was denied. Section 7 of Rule 112 of the present Rules gives the accused the right to ask for a preliminary investigation; but it does not give him the right to do so after the lapse of the five-day period. This is in accord with the intent of the Rules of Criminal Procedure to make preliminary investigation simple and speedy.In case at bar, Esam Gadi did so only a month after he had learned of the filing of the information against him. Moreover, Esam Gadi insists on the application of Section 7, Rule 112 in effect claiming or conceding there was a lawful warrantless arrest. It appears that the accused was apprehended while engaged in the commission of an offense, i.e, possession of marijuana punishable under Section 8, Article II of the Dangerous Drugs Act, as amended. Esam Gadi is not entitled to Preliminary Investigation. His right to demand preliminary investigation was subject to the condition that he should claim it seasonably. He did not do so. Esam Gadi, accordingly, effectively waived his right to a preliminary investigation. The denial of Esam Gadi's motion for preliminary investigation is also warranted: by his posting of a cash bail bond without previously or simultaneously demanding a preliminary investigation. In the present case, EsamGadi asked for and was granted bail on 10 January 1994, or one month before he asked for a preliminary investigation on 9 February 1994. Once more Esam Gadi in fact waived his right to preliminary investigation. G.R. No. 182677 August 3, 2010 JOSE ANTONIO C. LEVISTE vs. HON. ELMO M. ALAMEDA, HON. RAUL M. GONZALEZ, HON. EMMANUEL Y. VELASCO, HEIRS OF THE LATE RAFAEL DE LAS ALAS Facts: Petitioner was, by Information, charged with homicide for the death of Rafael de las Alas before the RTC of Makati City to which the case was raffled, presided by Judge Elmo Alameda, forthwith issued a commitment order against petitioner who was placed under police custody while confined at the Makati Medical Center. After petitioner posted a P40,000 cash bond which the trial court approved, he was released from detention, and his arraignment was set on January 24, 2007. Thereafter, the private complainants-heirs of De las Alas filed an Urgent Omnibus Motion praying, inter alia, for the deferment of the proceedings to allow the public prosecutor to re-examine the evidence on record or to conduct a reinvestigation to determine the proper offense. The RTC defers petitioners arraignment and allowing the prosecution to conduct a reinvestigation to determine the proper offense and submit a recommendation within 30 days from its inception, inter alia. So petitioner assailed these orders via certiorari and prohibition before the Court of Appeals. Meantime, petitioner filed an Urgent Ex-Parte Manifestation but the trial court dismissed the petition.
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On February 23, 2007, petitioner filed an Urgent Application for Admission to Bail Ex Abundanti Cautela which the trial court, after hearings thereon, finds that the evidence of guilt for the crime of murder is not strong. It accordingly allowed petitioner to post bail in the amount ofP300,000 for his provisional liberty. The trial court went on to try petitioner under the Amended Information which the trial court found petitioner guilty of homicide. From the Decision, petitioner filed an appeal to the appellate court during the pendency of which he filed an urgent application for admission to bail pending appeal but the appellate court denied petitioners application. Issue: Whether or not the petitioner waived his right to preliminary investigation by applying for bail. Ruling: Section 26, Rule 114 of the Rules of Court provides: SEC. 26. Bail not a bar to objections on illegal arrest, lack of or irregular preliminary investigation. An application for or admission to bail shall not bar the accused from challenging the validity of his arrest or the legality of the warrant issued therefor, or from assailing the regularity or questioning the absence of a preliminary investigation of the charge against him, provided that he raises them before entering his plea. The court shall resolve the matter as early as practicable but not later than the start of the trial of the case. In case at bar, by applying for bail, petitioner did not waive his right to challenge the regularity of the reinvestigation of the charge against him, the validity of the admission of the Amended Information, and the legality of his arrest under the Amended Information, as he vigorously raised them prior to his arraignment. During the arraignment on March 21, 2007, petitioner refused to enter his plea since the issues he raised were still pending resolution by the appellate court, thus prompting the trial court to enter a plea of "not guilty" for him. The principle that the accused is precluded after arraignment from questioning the illegal arrest or the lack of or irregular preliminary investigation applies "only if he voluntarily enters his plea and participates during trial, without previously invoking his objections thereto." There must be clear and convincing proof that petitioner had an actual intention to relinquish his right to question the existence of probable cause. When the only proof of intention rests on what a party does, his act should be so manifestly consistent with, and indicative of, an intent to voluntarily and unequivocally relinquish the particular right that no other explanation of his conduct is possible. From the given circumstances, the Court cannot reasonably infer a valid waiver on the part of petitioner to preclude him from obtaining a definite resolution of the objections he so timely invoked. Whatever delay arising from petitioners availment of remedies against the trial courts Orders cannot be imputed to petitioner to operate as a valid waiver on his part.

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G.R. No. 132422 March 30, 2004 FILADAMS PHARMA, INC., vs. HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS and ANTONIO FERIA Facts: Petitioner Filadams Pharma, Inc. (Filadams) was a corporation engaged in the business of selling medicines to wholesalers. Private respondent Antonio Feria was its sales representative. In an audit conducted, respondent Feria was found accountable for p41,733.01 representing unsold but unreturned stocks and samples, unremitted collections and unliquidated cash advances. Filadams alleged that these shortages and accountabilities were admitted by respondent through his wife and counsel in a conference held at its office but despite repeated demands, respondent failed to settle them to its damage and prejudice. So a complaint-affidavit was filed by the petitioner. However, the Assistant City Prosecutor of Quezon City dismissed the complaint-affidavit for lack of cause of action. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration but this was denied by 1st Assistant City Prosecutor Gerona. Petitioner appealed to the Secretary of Justice under the 1993 Revised Rules on Appeals from Resolutions in Preliminary Investigations or Reinvestigation but the Department of Justice (DOJ), through the Office of the Chief State Prosecutor, also dismissed the appeal. Filadams filed with the Court of Appeals a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court seeking to annul the above-quoted decision of the DOJ dismissing its appeal and affirming the resolution of the Assistant City Prosecutor of Quezon City. The Court of Appeals dismissed the petition for certiorari on the ground that the proper remedy was petition for review Rule 43 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. Hence, a petition. Issue: Whether or not the Office of the Prosecutor of Quezon City is a quasi-judicial agency whose resolutions were appealable to the Court of Appeals under Rule 43 Ruling: Petitioner submits that a prosecutor conducting a preliminary investigation performs a quasi-judicial function. However, the court held that the Office of the Prosecutor is not a quasi-judicial body; necessarily, its decisions approving the filing of a criminal complaint are not appealable to the Court of Appeals under Rule 43. The prosecutor in a preliminary investigation does not determine the guilt or innocence of the accused. He does not exercise adjudication nor rule-making functions. Preliminary investigation is merely inquisitorial, and is often the only means of discovering the persons who may be reasonably charged with a crime and to enable the fiscal to prepare his complaint or information. It is not a trial of the case on the merits and has no purpose except that of determining whether a crime has been committed and whether there is probable cause to believe that the accused is guilty thereof. While the fiscal makes that determination, he cannot be said to be acting as a quasi-court, for it is the courts, ultimately, that pass judgment on the accused, not the fiscal.

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LAILA G. DE OCAMPO vs. THE HONORABLE SECRETARY OF JUSTICE G.R. No. 147932 January 25, 2006 Facts: The present case arose from a sworn statement of respondent Magdalena B. Dacarra. Magdalena stated that on 4 December 1999, her nine-year-old son Ronald complained of dizziness upon arriving home. Ronald replied that petitioner, Ronalds teacher, banged his head against that of his classmate Lorendo Orayan. During the inquest proceedings, Assistant Quezon City ruled that the evidence warrants the release of the respondent for further investigation of the charges against her since the case is not proper for inquest as the incident complained of. Further, she finds the evidence insufficient to support the charge for homicide against the respondent. Subsequently, the case was referred to Assistant Quezon City Prosecutor for preliminary investigation and the investigating prosecutor issued a Resolution finding probable cause against petitioner for the offenses charged. Consequently, petitioner filed a petition for review with the DOJ. In her appeal to the DOJ, petitioner contended that the investigating prosecutor showed bias in favor of complainants Magdalena and Erlinda ("complainants") for not conducting a clarificatory hearing and unilaterally procuring the autopsy report. Petitioner also alleged that it is the Office of the Ombudsman which has jurisdiction over the case, and not the Quezon City Prosecutors Office. The DOJ Secretary denied the petition for review. The DOJ Secretary held that there was no bias in complainants favor when the investigating prosecutor did not conduct a clarificatory hearing and unilaterally procured the autopsy report as nothing precluded her from doing so. Hence, the DOJ Secretary upheld the investigating prosecutors finding. Issue: Whether or not the petitioner was denied due process during the preliminary investigation Ruling: The Court rejects petitioners contention that she was denied due process when the investigating prosecutor did not conduct a clarificatory hearing. A clarificatory hearing is not indispensable during preliminary investigation. Rather than being mandatory, a clarificatory hearing is optional on the part of the investigating officer as evidenced by the use of the term "may" in Section 3(e) of Rule 112. This provision states: (e) If the investigating officer believes that there are matters to be clarified, he may set a hearing to propound clarificatory questions to the parties or their witnesses, during which the parties shall be afforded an opportunity to be present but without the right to examine or cross-examine. The use of the word "may" in a statute commonly denotes that it is directory in nature. The term "may" is generally permissive only and operates to confer discretion. Under Section 3(e) of Rule 112, it is within the discretion of the investigation officer whether to set the case for further hearings to clarify some matters. In this case, the
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investigating prosecutor no longer conducted hearings after petitioner submitted her counter-affidavit. This simply means that at that point the investigating prosecutor believed that there were no more matters for clarification. It is only in petitioners mind that some "crucial points" still exist and need clarification. In any event, petitioner can raise these "important" matters during the trial proper. Petitioner was not deprived of due process since both parties were accorded equal rights in arguing their case and presenting their respective evidence during the preliminary investigation. Due process is merely an opportunity to be heard. Petitioner cannot successfully invoke denial of due process since she was given the opportunity of a hearing. Preliminary investigation is merely inquisitorial. It is not a trial of the case on the merits. Its sole purpose is to determine whether a crime has been committed and whether the respondent is probably guilty of the crime. It is not the occasion for the full and exhaustive display of the parties evidence. Hence, if the investigating prosecutor is already satisfied that he can reasonably determine the existence of probable cause based on the parties evidence thus presented, he may terminate the proceedings and resolve the case. REMBERTO C. KARA-AN vs. OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN et al,. GR. No. 119990 June 21, 2004 Facts:

Petitioner wrote then Senator Ernesto Maceda imputing certain criminal acts to "the present number and membership" or "the clique of six" in the Board of Directors of the AlAmanah Islamic Investment Bank of the Philippines. Petitioner also claimed that the "clique of six" approved the real estate mortgage on CAMECs loan without requiring the cancellation of a prior subsisting mortgage and without securing the written consent of the first mortgagee in violation of law. Thus, petitioner asserts that the "clique of six" is liable for entering into a contract which is manifestly and grossly disadvantageous to the government, which is punishable under RA 3019. Thereafter, Senator Maceda endorsed petitioners letter to then Ombudsman for appropriate investigation. The Ombudsman issued the first assailed Resolution dismissing the complaint for lack of merit. Petitioner filed a Motion for Reconsideration or Reinvestigation but the Ombudsman denied petitioners motion. Hence, the present recourse. Issue: Whether or not the Ombudsman officials has conducted appropriate invesitgations according to their constitutional, statututory and administrative mandates. Ruling: The title of this petition shows that petitioner filed the petition under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. The remedy from resolutions of the Ombudsman in preliminary investigations of criminal cases is a petition for certiorari under Rule 65, not a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45. By availing of a wrong remedy, the petition should be dismissed outright.
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Rule 45 of the Rules of Court provides that only judgments or final orders or resolutions of the Court of Appeals, Sandiganbayan, the Regional Trial Court and other courts, whenever authorized by law may be the subject of a petition for review on certiorari to this Court. Under Section 27 of RA 6770, a decision of the Ombudsman in an administrative disciplinary action is appealable to this Court by petition for review under Rule 45. However, this does not include decisions of the Ombudsman in preliminary investigations of criminal cases. Neither does it include orders resolving incidents in preliminary investigations of criminal cases. In other words, the right to appeal under Rule 45 does not apply to orders and decisions of the Ombudsman in criminal cases. Such right is granted only from orders or decisions of the Ombudsman in administrative cases.9 Even in administrative cases, appeals from decisions of the Ombudsman is first taken to the Court of Appeals under the provisions of Rule 43. TERESITA G. FABIAN vs. HON. ANIANO A. DESIERTO, in his capacity as ombudsman G.R. No. 129742 September 16, 1998 Facts: Petitioner Teresita G. Fabian was the major stockholder and president of PROMAT Construction Development Corporation (PROMAT) which was engaged in the construction business. Private respondents Nestor V. Agustin was the incumbent District Engineering District (FMED) when he allegedly committed the offenses for which he was administratively charged in the Office in the office of the Ombudsman. Promat participated in the bidding for government construction project including those under the FMED, and private respondent, reportedly taking advantage of his official position, inveigled petitioner into an amorous relationship. Their affair lasted for some time, in the course of which private respondents gifted PROMAT with public works contracts and interceded for it in problems concerning the same in his office. Later, misunderstanding and unpleasant incidents developed between the parties and when petitioner tried to terminate their relationship, private respondent refused and resisted her attempts to do so to the extent of employing acts of harassment, intimidation and threats. She eventually filed the aforementioned administrative case against him in a letter-complaint. The said complaint sought the dismissal of private respondent for violation of Section 19, Republic Act No. 6770 (Ombudsman Act of 1989) and Section 36 of Presidential Decree No. 807 (Civil Service Decree), with an ancillary prayer for his preventive suspension. On January 31, 1996, Graft Investigator Eduardo R. Benitez issued a resolution finding private respondents guilty of grave misconduct and ordering his dismissal from the service with forfeiture of all benefits under the law. Issue: Whether or not sec 27 of the Ombudsman Act is valid.

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Ruling: Taking all the foregoing circumstances in their true legal roles and effects, therefore, Section 27 of Republic Act No. 6770 cannot validly authorize an appeal to this Court from decisions of the Office of the Ombudsman in administrative disciplinary cases. It consequently violates the proscription in Section 30, Article VI of the Constitution against a law which increases the Appellate jurisdiction of this Court. No countervailing argument has been cogently presented to justify such disregard of the constitutional prohibition. That constitutional provision was intended to give this Court a measure of control over cases placed under its appellate Jurisdiction. Otherwise, the indiscriminate enactment of legislation enlarging its appellate jurisdiction would unnecessarily burden the Court. G.R. No. 131445 May 27, 2004 AMADO G. PEREZ (DECEASED) et al. , petitioners, vs. OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN et al., respondents. Facts: Petitioners, members of the Kilusang Bayan ng mga Magtitinda ng Bagong Pamilihang Bayan ng Muntinlupa, Inc.(KBMBPM), instituted two complaints at the Office of the Ombudsman against several respondents, one of whom was then Mayor Ignacio R. Bunye, for violation of RA 3019 (also known as the "Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act"). Respondents allegedly destroyed the doors of the KBMBPM office while serving on petitioners the Take-Over Order of the KBMBPM management dated October 28, 1998 issued by then Agriculture Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez. The Office of the Ombudsman issued a resolution excluding respondent Bunye from the criminal indictment. The petitioners assailed the exclusion in the CA through an original petition for certiorari and mandamus. The CA, however, dismissed it for lack of jurisdiction. The CA likewise denied petitioners motion for reconsideration. Issue: Whether or not CAs dismissal of the petition for certiorari and mandamus correct.

Ruling: The CA was correct in dismissing the petition for certiorari and mandamus. It is the nature of the case that determines the proper remedy to be filed and the appellate court where such remedy should be filed by a party aggrieved by the decisions or orders of the Office of the Ombudsman. If it is an administrative case, appeal should be taken to the Court of Appeals under Rule 43 of the Rules of Court. If it is a criminal case, the proper remedy is to file with the Supreme Court an original petition for certiorari under Rule 65. As the present controversy pertained to a criminal case, the petitioners were correct in availing of the remedy of petition for certiorari under Rule 65 but they erred in filing it in the Court of Appeals. The procedure set out in Kuizon vs. Ombudsman and Mendoza-Arce vs. Ombudsman, requiring that petitions for certiorari questioning the Ombudsmans orders or
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decisions in criminal cases should be filed in the Supreme Court and not the Court of Appeals, is still the prevailing rule. But even if the petition for certiorari had been filed in this Court, we would have dismissed it just the same. First, petitioners should have filed a motion for reconsideration of the Ombudsman resolution as it was the plain, speedy and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law, not filing a petition for certiorari directly in the Supreme Court. Second, the Office of the Ombudsman did not act without or in excess of its jurisdiction or with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction in issuing the Ombudsman resolution. In this case, there was no grave abuse of discretion on the part of the Office of the Ombudsman in dismissing the complaint against respondent Bunye upon the factual finding that: xxx xxx xxx

Indeed no evidence is shown in the record that respondent Mayor Bunye specifically participated in the violent implementation of Secretary Dominguez Order of October 28, 1988. It was not shown with certainty by complainant that the alleged presence of respondent Mayor Bunye at the scene of the incident was an active participation thereof by the latter. Accordingly, the exclusion of respondent Mayor Bunye from the criminal charge and the dismissal of the complaint against him are in order. xxx xxx x x x.

We have consistently refrained from interfering with the investigatory and prosecutorial powers of the Ombudsman absent any compelling reason. This policy is based on constitutional, statutory and practical considerations. We are mindful that the Constitution and RA 6770 endowed the Office of the Ombudsman with a wide latitude of investigatory and prosecutorial powers, virtually free from legislative, executive or judicial intervention, in order to insulate it from outside pressure and improper influence. Moreover, a preliminary investigation is in effect a realistic judicial appraisal of the merits of the case. Sufficient proof of the guilt of the accused must be adduced so that when the case is tried, the trial court may not be bound, as a matter of law, to order an acquittal. Hence, if the Ombudsman, using professional judgment, finds the case dismissible, the Court shall respect such findings, unless clothed with grave abuse of discretion. Otherwise, the functions of the courts will be grievously hampered by innumerable petitions assailing the dismissal of investigatory proceedings conducted by the Office of the Ombudsman with regard to complaints filed before it. In much the same way, the courts will be swamped with cases if they will have to review the exercise of discretion on the part of fiscals or prosecuting attorneys each time the latter decide to file an information in court or dismiss a complaint by a private complainant.

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G.R. No. 171188 June 19, 2009 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Petitioner, vs. JESSIE B. CASTILLO and FELICITO R. MEJIA, Respondents. Facts: Complainant Cesar Sarino is one of the registered owners of a piece of land covered by Transfer Certificate of Title No. T-450278 of the Registry of Deeds of Cavite, located in front of SM Bacoor, Cavite. The property is leased to Pepito B. Aquino and Adriano G. Samoy who are in turn subleasing it to several stallholders. In September 1999, respondent Felicito R. Mejia, Municipal Building Official of Bacoor, sent to the stallholders Notices of Violation of the National Building Code on the grounds that the structures they were occupying were erected without building permits and occupied by them without the necessary certificates of occupancy having been first secured. On January 17, 2000, Mejias office sent letters dated January 10, 2000 to the stallholders informing them that because of their repeated failure to comply with the National Building Code and its implementing rules and regulations and the Business Permit and Licensing Office Requirements, their stalls will be closed down on January 24, 2000. On February 16, 2000, a task force from the Bacoor Municipal Hall effected the closure of the stalls through the installation of galvanized iron fences. Lessees Aquino and Samoy thereafter filed before the Office of the Ombudsman a complaint against respondent Jessie B. Castillo, in his capacity as Bacoor Municipal Mayor, respondent Mejia and two other municipal officials for violation of Section 3(e) and (f) of Republic Act No. 3019, otherwise known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, as amended, by blocking and fencing off their property, by installing and erecting a galvanized iron fence on the front portion of the said property facing the SM Bacoor, thereby depriving them of the full use and enjoyment of their property and effectively decreasing its value for commercial purposes. On October 20, 2000, the Office of the Ombudsman dismissed the complaint, ruling that the respondent local officials acted in good faith in effecting the closure of the stalls. On September 6, 2001, Sarino filed a Complaint against respondents Castillo and Mejia before the Office of the Ombudsman charging them criminally for violation of Section 3(e) and (f) of Rep. Act No. 3019 and Rep. Act No. 6713, and administratively for oppression, grave misconduct and for committing acts contrary to law. According to Sarino, the construction of the galvanized fence in February 2000 is tantamount to an unlawful taking of their property causing them undue injury and that despite his verbal and written demands, respondents refused to remove said fence. On March 10, 2003, the Ombudsman dismissed the administrative complaint for being moot and academic due to Castillos re-election as mayor in the May 2001 elections. On May 7, 2003, the Office of the Ombudsman, through the Office of the Special Prosecutor, filed an Information against respondents for violation of Section 3(e) of Rep. Act No. 3019 before the Sandiganbayan. In a Resolution dated August 15, 2003, the Sandiganbayan declared that probable cause exists against respondents for violation of Section 3(e). Accordingly, it directed the issuance of the corresponding warrants of arrest and hold departure orders against respondents.
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On August 20, 2003, respondents voluntarily surrendered to the Sandiganbayan and posted their respective bonds for their provisional liberty. Respondents moved for the reinvestigation of the case which the Sandiganbayan gave due course. After the reinvestigation, the Office of the Special Prosecutor, upon approval of the Ombudsman, filed a Motion for Leave to Admit Attached Amended Information. The respondents then filed a Comment thereon with Motion for Judicial Determination of Probable Cause. In a Resolution dated November 3, 2004, the Sandiganbayan admitted the Amended Information. In a Resolution dated May 9, 2005, the Sandiganbayan denied the respondents Motion for Judicial Determination of Probable Cause. On October 10, 2005, the Sandiganbayan, upon motion for reconsideration filed by respondents, reversed its May 9, 2005 Resolution and dismissed the case. The Sandiganbayan likewise set aside the arrest warrants it previously issued. It held that the instant criminal case is a mere rehash of the previously dismissed criminal case filed by complainants lessees against respondents. It also ruled that there was no evident bad faith, manifest partiality or inexcusable negligence that can be attributed to respondents. Neither did complainants claim of undue injury have any leg to stand on. Issue: Whether or not the Sandiganbayan erred in overturning the Ombudsmans determination of probable cause resulting in the dismissal of the case against respondents. Ruling: The petition is meritorious. The Sandiganbayan erred in overturning the Ombudsmans determination of probable cause. Moreover, it was clearly premature on the part of the Sandiganbayan to make a determinative finding prior to the parties presentation of their respective evidence that there was no bad faith and manifest partiality on the respondents part and undue injury on the part of the complainant. In Go v. Fifth Division, Sandiganbayan, we held that "it is well established that the presence or absence of the elements of the crime is evidentiary in nature and is a matter of defense that may be best passed upon after a full-blown trial on the merits." Also, it would be unfair to expect the prosecution to present all the evidence needed to secure the conviction of the accused upon the filing of the information against the latter. The reason is found in the nature and objective of a preliminary investigation. Here, the public prosecutors do not decide whether there is evidence beyond reasonable doubt of the guilt of the person charged; they merely determine whether there is sufficient ground to engender a well-founded belief that a crime has been committed and that respondent is probably guilty thereof, and should be held for trial. The Sandiganbayan and all courts for that matter should always remember the judiciarys standing policy on non-interference in the Office of the Ombudsmans exercise of its constitutionally mandated powers. This policy is based not only upon respect for the investigatory and prosecutory powers granted by the Constitution to the Office of the Ombudsman but upon practicality as well, considering that otherwise, the functions of the courts will be grievously hampered by innumerable petitions regarding complaints filed
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before it, and in much the same way that the courts would be extremely swamped if they were to be compelled to review the exercise of discretion on the part of the prosecutors each time they decide to file an information in court or dismiss a complaint by a private complainant. The petition is GRANTED. The Sandiganbayans challenged Resolutions dated October 10, 2005 and January 18, 2006 are REVERSED and SET ASIDE. G.R. No. 70748 October 21, 1985 IN THE MATTER OF THE PETITION FOR HABEAS CORPUS OF LAURENTE C. ILAGAN et al. petitioners, vs. HON. JUAN PONCE ENRILE, Minister of National Defense et al., respondents. Facts: On May 10, 1985, Attorney Laurente C. Ilagan was arrested in Davao City by elements of the PC-INP and detained at Camp Catitipan on the basis of a Mission Order allegedly issued by the Ministry of National Defense. On that same day, fifteen lawyers from the IBP Davao Chapter visited Atty. Ilagan. One of the visiting lawyers, Atty. Antonio Arellano, was also arrested and detained on the basis of an unsigned Mission Order. On May 13, 1985, the military sent word to the IBP Davao Chapter that Attorney Marcos Risonar would likewise be arrested. The latter went to Camp Catitipan to verify his arrest papers and was detained on the basis of a Mission Order signed by General Echavarria, Regional Unified Commander. This petition for habeas corpus was then filed by and on behalf of the three arrested lawyers hereinafter referred to as the detained attorneys on the ground that their arrests were illegal and violative of the Constitution, since arrests cannot be made on the basis of Mission Orders and that there appears to be a military campaign to harass lawyers involved in national security cases. On May 16, 1985, the Court issued the Writ, required a Return, and set the petition for hearing on May 23, 1985. In their Return, respondents: contended that the detained attorneys were arrested on the basis of a PDA issued by the President on January 25, 1985; that the Writ of habeas corpus is suspended as to them by virtue of Proclamation No. 2045-A; and that pursuant to the ruling in Garcia-Padilla vs. Ponce Enrile, et al, Courts lack the authority to inquire into the cause and validity of detention of persons held pursuant to the suspension. Respondents further expounded on the state of rebellion in Davao City on the basis of seized subversive documents, implying that the detained attorneys played active roles in organizing mass actions of the Communist Party of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front. Respondents then prayed for the denial of the petition. (During the hearing) Due to lack of evidence linking the detained attorneys with the alleged subversive activities, the Court, on the same day resolved to order the temporary release of the detained attorneys on the recognizance of the principal counsel of petitioner's, namely, retired Chief Justice Roberto Concepcion and retired Associate Justice J.B.L. Reyes.
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The next day, or on May 24, 1985, petitioners filed a Manifestation and Motion stating that the detained attorneys had not yet been released and praying that they be released to the custody of the principal counsel of petioners at the Supreme Court. On the other hand, respondents contend that a preliminary investigation was unnecessary since the detained attorneys were lawfully arrested without a warrant. Issue: Whether or not there should be a preliminary investigation. Ruling: Section 7, Rule 112, of the 1985 Rules on Criminal Procedure provides: SEC. 7. When accused lawfully arrested without warrant.- When a person is lawfully arrested without a warrant for an offense cognizable by the Regional Trial Court the complaint or information may be filed by the offended party, peace officer or fiscal without preliminary investigation having been first conducted on the basis of the affidavit of the offended party or arrested officer or person. The question of absence of a proper preliminary investigation is also better inquired into by the Court below. When so raised, this Court, speaking through Mr. Justice Claudio Teehankee, has held that the trial Court is called upon "not to dismiss the information but hold the case in abeyance and conduct its own investigation or require the fiscal to hold a reinvestigation. As stressed in People vs. Casiano, 1 SCRA 478 [1961], this is the proper procedure since the "absence of such investigation did not impair the validity of the Information or otherwise render it defective. Much less did it affect the jurisdiction of the Court of First Instance". The right to a preliminary investigation, being waivable, does not argue against the validity of the proceedings, the most that could have been done being to remand the case in order that such investigation could be conducted. The proper forum before which absence of preliminary investigation should be ventilated is the Court of First Instance, not this Court. Reason is not wanting for this view. Absence of preliminary investigation does not go to the jurisdiction of the court but merely to the regularity of the proceedings. It could even be waived. Indeed, it is frequently waived. These are matters to be inquired into by the trial court, not an appellate Court. WHEREFORE, this petition for Habeas Corpus is hereby dismissed for having become moot and academic. Petitioners are now detained by virtue of a Warrant of Arrest issued by the Regional Trial Court of Davao City in relation to the criminal case for Rebellion filed against them before said Court. SO ORDERED.

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G.R. No. 117952-53 February 14, 2001 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. DANILO DE GUZMAN y PEREZ, accused-appellant. Facts: On October 18, 1992, SPO1 Arnel Cuevas spotted Danilo de Guzman at the Villamar Beach Resort, but the latter stayed for only thirty (30) minutes. Subsequently, he learned that De Guzman was engaged in a drug sale that day and reported the same to headquarters. Pursuant to his report, the Chief of Intelligence of their station, SPO2 Rowell Tendero, instructed him to continue his surveillance of said beach resort with the hope of catching Danilo de Guzman. On October 26, 1992, at around 9:00 p.m., Danilo de Guzman returned to Villamar Beach Resort with companion Edsel Martin. They rented one of the resort cottages. Fifteen (15) minutes later, SPO1 Cuevas climbed the ladder which he perched on the concrete wall of the cottage. He, then, peeped through the window of the cottage and saw Danilo and Edsel seated face to face while using shabu. He also saw on top of the table three (3) plastic bags of shabu, a weighing scale and other drug related paraphernalia. SPO1 Cuevas hurriedly descended the ladder and hailed a tricycle and instructed the driver to inform SPO2 Tendero to proceed to Villamar Beach Resort immediately. Shortly, SPO2 Tendero, along with other police officers, arrived at the beach resort. However, instead of rushing to the cottage of De Guzman and Martin, the police officers decided to wait for them to come out of the cottage. SPO1 Cuevas explained that they did this so as not to forewarn the two of their presence. Otherwise, the two might simply flush the shabu down the toilet bowl and destroy the evidence. The police officers waited the whole night for De Guzman and Martin to come out of the cottage. Finally, De Guzman came out at around 7:40 a.m. the next day. SPO2 Tendero nabbed him upon seeing that his waist was bulging with a gun. While police Officer Vedar held De Guzman, SPO2 Tendero went up the cottage to check on Martin. SPO2 Alfaro and SPO3 Benavise, accompanied by a chambermaid and a boy from the resort, also went up with him. Inside the cottage, the same paraphernalia which the witness saw the night before were found, namely, three plastic bags of shabu, a plastic scoop, a burner, a lighter etc. The offenders were brought to the police station for questioning and detention. The police officers were without warrants of arrest or search warrants at the time of the arrests and seizure of evidence. As the operation was conducted largely during night-time, the police officers were unable to secure the necessary warrants for fear of leaving the place of surveillance. Subsequent forensic examination by Felicisima Francisco of the National Bureau of Investigation showed that the substance seized was indeed methampetamine hydrochloride or shabu weighing 299.5 grams. Contention of the Accused: Accused-appellant Danilo de Guzman claimed that on October 26, 1992, he met his childhood friend Edsel Martin at the gasoline station so they decided to dine at the Rojona Restaurant. Unfortunately, the car he was driving broke down so Martin towed De Guzman's vehicle with his car. Martin led them to Villamar Beach Resort where they spent the night for it was dangerous to stay in the streets.
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At around 8:00 or 9:00 a.m. the next day, a person knocked at the door informing him that his car had a flat tire. He then went down to check on the alleged flat tire and proceeded to look for a mechanic. Suddenly, several armed men in civilian clothes poked their guns at him and frisked him. These men took money from his wallet and took pictures of Martin. They also sei1tched him and Martin's person as well as Martin's car where they found a small gun with a magazine. They brought his car and Martin's car to the police station. The trial court based its conviction of accused-appellant on the testimonies of the prosecution witnesses, particularly on their unequivocal statements that accused-appellant admitted to the ownership of the drug, the paraphernalia and the gun and ammunition. The trial court refused to give credence to accused-appellant's defense. It considered accused-appellant's acts of proceeding to a resort to spend the night incredible as he could have had his car towed directly to his residence which is also within the city. Furthermore, the beach resort was still a kilometer away from the place where accusedappellant's car supposedly broke down. Issues: 1. Whether or not the prosecution erred in introducing the independent testimonies of the workers at the resort, which amounts to a willful suppression of evidence. 2. Whether or not the arrest is valid. Ruling: 1. No. The prosecution has the prerogative to present the witnesses it needs to meet the quantum of evidence necessary to merit the conviction of the accused. Hence, the prosecution cannot be faulted for presenting only the three (3) police officers involved in the arrest of accused-appellant. As these officers enjoy a presumption of regularity in the performance of official duty, it was likewise error for the defense to question their testimonies solely on the ground that they were the very officers who conducted the arrest. Besides, the trial court had sufficient opportunity to observe the demeanor of these witnesses and to determine the truth or falsity of their testimonies. We see no reason, therefore, to overturn the findings of facts of the lower court. Accused-appellant would have this Court believe that his arrest and the search conducted incidental to his arrest were illegal as the surrounding circumstances of the arrest were not within the purview of the allowable warrantless arrests under Rule 113, Section 5 of the Revised Rules of Court. 2. The arrest is valid. A close scrutiny of the records reveals that the police officers' manner of conducting the accused-appellant's arrest was not tainted with any constitutional infirmity. Despite word from their fellow officer, SPO1 Cuevas, that he saw accused-appellant sniff "shabu", they resisted the first impulse to storm the rented cottage which could have caused them to seriously disregard constitutional safeguards. Instead, the police officers waited for the needed opening to validly arrest the accused. To their minds, it would be the arrival of drug buyers. As the situation would have it, the arrest was necessitated by the presence of accused-appellant with a gun obviously tucked in his pants. Rule 113, Section 5 (a) of the Rules of Court provides that:

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Sec. 5. Arrest without warrant; when lawful. - A peace officer or a private person may, without a warrant, arrest a person: When, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense; x x x In this jurisdiction, the mere possession of a firearm, ammunition or machinery, tool or instrument used or intended to be used in the manufacture of any firearm or ammunition is a criminal offense under PD No. 1866. In the case of People v. Quijada, it was held that the gravamen of the offense of violation of P.D. 1866 is the possession of a firearm without the necessary permit and/or license. The crime is immediately consummated upon mere possession of firearm devoid of legal authority, since it is assumed that the same is possessed with animus possidendi. Similarly, in the case at bar, accused-appellant was caught by the police officers in flagrante delicto while carrying a firearm without the necessary permit or license. Clearly, it was in violation of P.D. No. 1866, Section 1, at the time of the arrest. Necessarily, the search conducted immediately after the accused-appellant's arrest was valid. Rule 126, Section 12 of the Rules of Court provides: Sec.12. Search incident to lawful arrest. - A person lawfully arrested may be searched for dangerous weapons or anything which may be used as proof of the commission of an offense, without a search warrant. The legal parameters of this rule limit its application to instances when the search is made contemporaneous to the arrest and within a permissible area of search. In this case, it was impossible for the police officers to obtain a search warrant as they were merely on surveillance, and to do so might abort any possible illegal activity that was taking place. Any attempt at leaving the place may cause them to lose sight of the accused-appellant altogether. Second, their presence in the area was not planned as they acted purely on a tip given by a fellow officer. Further, there was not enough opportunity to obtain a warrant of arrest or a search warrant as the surveillance was conducted from 10:00 o'clock in the evening up to 7:00 o'clock in the morning. The search conducted immediately after accused-appellant was apprehended was made more necessary by the presence of his companion inside the cottage which was just a few steps away from where he stood. The presence of accused-appellant's companion posed a danger to the police officers' life and limb, hence, it became necessary for them to locate him. Upon entry at the rented cottage, the police officers saw the shabu and drugrelated paraphernalia scattered on top of the table. Jurisprudence allows the seizure of personalty despite absence of warrant under the "plain view doctrine," so long as the area of search is within the immediate control of the arrested person and that the object of the search was open to the eye, as in the instant case. Furthermore, accused-appellant in this case is estopped from questioning the legality of his arrest upon his failure to move for quashal of the information against him prior to his arraignment and entry of plea. Any irregularity was therefore cured upon their voluntary submission to the trial court's jurisdiction,
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WHEREFORE, based on the foregoing, the decision of the Region Trial Court, Cavite City, Branch 17, in Criminal Case No.39-94, AFFIRMED.

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Rule 113: Arrest


G.R. No. 104879 May 6, 1994 ELIZALDE MALALOAN and MARLON LUAREZ, petitioners, vs. COURT OF APPEALS et al., respondents. Facts: On March 22, 1990, 1st Lt. Absalon V. Salboro of the CAPCOM Northern Sector (now Central Sector) filed with the Regional Trial Court of Kalookan City an application for search warrant. The search warrant was sought for in connection with an alleged violation of P.D. 1866 (Illegal Possession of Firearms and Ammunitions) perpetrated at No. 25 Newport St., corner Marlboro St., Fairview, Quezon City. On March 23, 1990, respondent RTC Judge of Kalookan City issued Search Warrant. On the same day, at around 2:30 p.m., members of the CAPCOM, armed with subject search warrant, proceeded to the situs of the offense alluded to, where a labor seminar of the Ecumenical Institute for Labor Education and Research (EILER) was then taking place. According to CAPCOM's "Inventory of Property Seized," firearms, explosive materials and subversive documents, among others, were seized and taken during the search. And all the sixty-one (61) persons found within the premises searched were brought to Camp Karingal, Quezon City but most of them were later released, with the exception of the herein petitioners, EILER Instructors, who were indicated for violation of P.D. 1866. On July 10, 1990, petitioners presented a "Motion for Consolidation, Quashal of Search Warrant and For the Suppression of All Illegally Acquired Evidence" before the Quezon City court; and a "Supplemental Motion to the Motion for Consolidation, Quashal of Search Warrant and Exclusion of Evidence Illegally Obtained. On September 21, 1990, the respondent Quezon City Judge issued the challenged order, consolidating subject cases but denying the prayer for the quashal of the search warrant under attack, the validity of which warrant was upheld. Issue: Whether or not a court may take cognizance of an application for a search warrant in connection with an offense allegedly committed outside its territorial jurisdiction and to issue a warrant to conduct a search on a place likewise outside its territorial jurisdiction. Ruling: Petitioners invoke the jurisdictional rules in the institution of criminal actions to invalidate the search warrant issued by the Regional Trial Court of Kalookan City because it is directed toward the seizure of firearms and ammunition allegedly cached illegally in Quezon City. This theory is sought to be buttressed by the fact that the criminal case against petitioners for violation of Presidential Decree No. 1866 was subsequently filed in the latter court. The application for the search warrant, it is claimed, was accordingly filed in a court of improper venue and since venue in criminal actions involves the territorial
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jurisdiction of the court, such warrant is void for having been issued by a court without jurisdiction to do so. The basic flaw in this reasoning is in erroneously equating the application for and the obtention of a search warrant with the institution and prosecution of a criminal action in a trial court. It would thus categorize what is only a special criminal process, the power to issue which is inherent in all courts, as equivalent to a criminal action, jurisdiction over which is reposed in specific courts of indicated competence. It ignores the fact that the requisites, procedure and purpose for the issuance of a search warrant are completely different from those for the institution of a criminal action. For, indeed, a warrant, such as a warrant of arrest or a search warrant, merely constitutes process. A search warrant is defined in our jurisdiction as an order in writing issued in the name of the People of the Philippines signed by a judge and directed to a peace officer, commanding him to search for personal property and bring it before the court. A search warrant is in the nature of a criminal process akin to a writ of discovery. It is a special and peculiar remedy, drastic in its nature, and made necessary because of a public necessity. It is clear, therefore, that a search warrant is merely a judicial process designed by the Rules to respond only to an incident in the main case, if one has already been instituted, or in anticipation thereof. In the latter contingency, as in the case at bar, it would involve some judicial clairvoyance to require observance of the rules as to where a criminal case may eventually be filed where, in the first place, no such action having as yet been instituted, it may ultimately be filed in a territorial jurisdiction other than that wherein the illegal articles sought to be seized are then located. This is aside from the consideration that a criminal action may be filed in different venues under the rules for delitos continuados or in those instances where different trial courts have concurrent original jurisdiction over the same criminal offense. It would be an exacting imposition upon the law enforcement authorities or the prosecutorial agencies to unerringly determine where they should apply for a search warrant in view of the uncertainties and possibilities as to the ultimate venue of a case under the foregoing rules. Concededly, the problem of venue would be relatively easier to resolve if a criminal case has already been filed in a particular court and a search warrant is needed to secure evidence to be presented therein. Obviously, the court trying the criminal case may properly issue the warrant, upon proper application and due compliance with the requisites therefor, since such application would only be an incident in that case and which it can resolve in the exercise of its ancillary jurisdiction. If the contraband articles are within its territorial jurisdiction, there would appear to be no further complications. The jurisdictional problem would resurrect, however, where such articles are outside its territorial jurisdiction, which aspect will be addressed hereafter. We definitely cannot accept the conclusion that the grant of power to the courts mentioned therein, to entertain and issue search warrants where the place to be searched is within their territorial jurisdiction, was intended to exclude other courts from exercising the same power. It will readily be noted that Circular No. 19 was basically intended to provide prompt action on applications for search warrants. Its predecessor, Administrative Circular No. 13, had a number of requirements, principally a raffle of the applications for
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search warrants, if they had been filed with the executive judge, among the judges within his administrative area. Circular No. 19 eliminated, by amendment, that required raffle and ordered instead that such applications should immediately be "taken cognizance of and acted upon by the Executive Judges of the Regional Trial Court, Metropolitan Trial Court, and Municipal Trial Court under whose jurisdiction the place to be searched is located," or by their substitutes enumerated therein. This should not, however, mean that a court whose territorial jurisdiction does not embrace the place to be searched cannot issue a search warrant therefor, where the obtention of that search warrant is necessitated and justified by compelling considerations of urgency, subject, time and place. Conversely, neither should a search warrant duly issued by a court which has jurisdiction over a pending criminal case, or one issued by an executive judge or his lawful substitute under the situations provided for by Circular No. 19, be denied enforcement or nullified just because it was implemented outside the court's territorial jurisdiction. No law or rule imposes such a limitation on search warrants , in the same manner that no such restriction is provided for warrants of arrest. On the other hand, the lifetime of a search warrant has been expressly set in our Rules at ten days but there is no provision as to the extent of the territory wherein it may be enforced, provided it is implemented on and within the premises specifically described therein which may or may not be within the territorial jurisdiction of the issuing court. The instant petition is DENIED and the assailed judgment of respondent Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 23533 is hereby AFFIRMED. SO ORDERED. G.R. No. 124346 June 8, 2004 YOLLY TEODOSIO y BLANCAFLOR, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Crime: violation of Section 15, Article III of RA 6425 (The Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972), as amended. (Selling and delivering Shabu to another person.) Facts: The evidence of the prosecution showed that, after four days of surveillance on the house of appellant, at around 8:00 p.m. on August 5, 1992, Chief Inspector Federico Laciste ordered a team from the PNP Regional Office Intelligence Unit to conduct a buy-bust operation on appellant who was suspected of peddling regulated drugs known as shabu (methamphetamine hydrochloride). The team was headed by SPO1 Emerson Norberte and composed of SPO1 Jeffrey Inciong, SPO3 Roberto Samoy, SPO3 Pablo Rebaldo and SPO1 Rolando Llanes. About midnight, the team and their informer proceeded to the appellants house in Solitaria Street, Pasay City. SPO1 Jeffrey Inciong and the informer entered the open gate of appellants compound and walked to his apartment while the rest of the team observed and waited outside. At 12:10 a.m., the informer introduced Inciong to the appellant as a shabu buyer. Appellant told them that a gram of shabu cost P600. When Inciong signified his intention to buy, appellant went inside his apartment while Inciong and the informer waited outside. A few minutes later, appellant came out and said "Swerte ka, mayroon pang
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dalawang natira (You are lucky. There are two [grams] left)." When Inciong told appellant that he only needed one gram, the latter gave him one plastic packet. In turn, Inciong handed to appellant P600 or six pieces of P100 bills earlier treated with ultraviolet powder. After verifying the contents of the packet as shabu, Inciong gave the signal to the other police officers who witnessed the transaction. After introducing himself as a police officer, Inciong, together with his companions, arrested appellant. The marked money bills, the other packet of shabu recovered from appellants right front pants-pocket and the buy-bust shabu were brought to the PNP Crime Laboratory for examination. The results were positive in appellants hands, the marked money bills and the right front pocket of his pants. The buy-bust shabu and the contents of the other packet recovered from appellant were also confirmed to be methamphetamine hydrochloride. Contention of the accused: Police officers forcibly entered and searched his house without a warrant. When they did not find any regulated drug, they instead took a bag containing a large sum of money. They also showed their brutality by slapping him and punching him in the stomach. Thereafter, they framed up appellant by wiping ultraviolet powder on his palms. Issue: Whether or not the warrantless search is valid, therefore conviction is also valid.

Ruling: Conviction is affirmed. The police officers were clear and categorical in their narration of how the entrapment operation was conducted. SPO1 Inciong, acting as a poseur-buyer, was introduced by the informer to appellant in front of the latters apartment. Thereafter, appellant went inside his apartment and came back with two packets of shabu. Inciong handed to appellant six pieces of P100 bills treated with ultraviolet powder in exchange for one packet of shabu. Immediately after, Inciong gave the signal to the other policemen who then entered the compound and effected appellants arrest. Recovered from appellant was the other packet of shabu and the six pieces of marked money. The tests conducted on these pieces of evidence, appellants hands and right front pants-pocket showed that appellant was the same person who sold the drugs to police officer Inciong. There was strong evidence therefore, certainly beyond reasonable doubt, that appellant was engaged in drug-dealing. The elements of the crime were duly proven. In the prosecution of the offense of illegal sale of prohibited drugs, what is material is the proof that the transaction or sale actually took place, coupled with the presentation in court of the corpus delicti as evidence. On the argument that the officers had four days to secure a warrant but did not get one, the evidence was that the four-day period was not enough to establish probable cause for the issuance of a warrant. All that the police authorities knew about appellant was the information gathered from the informer and their surveillance of the area. Furthermore, no warrant was needed considering that the mission was not a search but an entrapment. An arrest made after an entrapment does not require a warrant inasmuch as it is considered a valid warrantless arrest pursuant to Rule 113, Section 5(a) of the Rules of Court. Any search resulting from a lawful warrantless arrest is valid because the accused committed a
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crime in flagrante delicto, that is, the person arrested (appellant in this case) committed a crime in the presence of the arresting officers. G.R. Nos. 117145-50 & 117447 March 28, 2000 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. LEONIDA MERIS y PADILLA, accused-appellant. Crime: Illegal recruitment in large-scale and six counts of estafa. Facts: Napoleon Ramos, complainant, testified that he was at the house of the accused on Estrada Street, Urdaneta, Pangasinan, in the evening of January 9, 1991, between the hours of 7:00 and 8:00 o'clock. Also in the house were Nadal, Conseja and Bombarda. The accused told the private complainants that she knew someone in Manila who could help them secure employment in Hongkong; that if they are interested she would take them to Manila on January 12, 1991, and that they should be prepared to make an initial payment of P15,000.00 each, for their placement fees. On the early morning of January 12, 1991, Ramos, Nadal, Conseja and Bombarda together with the accused proceeded to Manila by bus. They went directly to a house on Lardizabal Street, Sampaloc, Manila, where they were served breakfast. After a while, a woman arrived and was introduced by the accused to the private complainants as Julie Micua. The complainants were assured by Micua that she could get them overseas employment and upon payment of their placement fees of P35,000.00 each, they would leave for Hongkong within one month. Ramos, Nadal, Conseja and Bombarda made a downpayment of P5,000.00 each to the accused and her husband. The corresponding receipts, however, which were prepared by the accused, were in the name of and signed by Micua. xxx xxx xxx On January 14, 1991, Ramos went back to the House in Sampaloc, Manila, and handed to the accused the sum of P15,000.00. As in the first payment, the accused prepared a receipt in the name of Micua, who signed the same. On January 17, 1991, Ramos paid the accused an additional sum of P10,000.00 and the latter prepared a receipt in the name of Micua, who signed it. After Ramos failed to leave for Hongkong or secure overseas employment for more than two months since January 1991, he became suspicious and later realized that he and the other complainants had been hoodwinked. On April 26, 1991, Ramos and the other five complainants went to Manila and lodged with the Western Police District Command, Manila, criminal complaints for estafa and illegal recruitment against the accused, which led to her immediate arrest. Accordingly, the trial court held that all the elements of Article 315, Paragraph 2 of the Revised Penal Code were proven in the cases for estafa. In likewise finding accusedappellant guilty of illegal recruitment in large scale. There was unity of action, purpose and design between the accused and Julie Micua to recruit the private complainants for overseas employment in Hongkong without first securing a license or an authority therefor from the Philippine Overseas and Employment Agency. The accused took a direct and active participation in the recruitment of the private
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complainants by referring and persuading them to apply for deployment abroad, accompanying them all the way from Urdaneta, Pangasinan, to Manila to refer them to Micua, who presented herself as a recruiter of worker(s) for overseas employment, personally collecting and receiving from them various amounts for their placement fees, and preparing the receipts therefor. Issue: Whether or not her arrest without warrant was illegal and, therefore, following the settled rule that the trial court does not acquire jurisdiction over the person of one who is illegally arrested, the case should have been dismissed. Ruling: This contention is untenable. Jurisdiction over the person of the accused is acquired either by arrest or voluntary appearance in court. The record amply demonstrates that accused-appellant voluntarily appeared in court at her arraignments, entered a plea of "not guilty" to all the charges against her, and later actively participated in the trial. Hence, granting arguendo that accused-appellant's arrest was defective, such is deemed cured upon her voluntary submission to the jurisdiction of the court. It should be stressed that the question of legality of an arrest affects only the jurisdiction of the court over the person of the accused. Consequently, if objections based on this ground are waived, the fact that the arrest was illegal is not sufficient cause for setting aside an otherwise valid judgment. The technicality cannot render the subsequent proceedings void and deprive the State of its right to convict the guilty when all the facts on record point to the culpability of the accused. The decision in question is hereby AFFIRMED. G.R. No. 107741 October 18, 1996 FRANCISCO BERNARTE, at al.,petitioner, vs. THE COURT OF APPEALS et al., respondents. Facts: The records show that on October 5, 1989, Estrella Arastia, in her own behalf and as attorney-in-fact of the heirs of Teodorica Reinares Arastia, Leticia Arastia-Montenegro and Juanita Arastia, filed a complaint for violation of Section 73 (b) of Republic Act No. 6657 (Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988) before the Regional Trial Court of San Fernando, Pampanga, Branch 48 in its capacity as a Special Agrarian Court. The complaint alleged that after the EDSA Revolution, herein petitioners, who organized themselves into the Anibang Manggagawa sa Agricultura (A.M.A.), illegally intruded into the land located at Lubao, Pampanga (with an aggregate area of around 210 hectares) of the plaintiffs, burned the existing sugarcane plants and started to cultivate small portions thereof. As a result, the land was abandoned by Rustico Coronal, the civil lessee, and taken over by plaintiff-owners. Alleging further that there had been "definite" findings and rulings by the Department of Agrarian Reform" that "no tenancy relationship" existed
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between the parties, petitioners herein continued to forcibly enter, intrude into and molest the possession of the over the land in question in violation of Section 73 (b) of Republic Act No. 6657. The complaint prayed for the issuance of a temporary restraining order to enjoin petitioners from entering into the land and intruding in the possession thereof and, after hearing, the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction which should be made permanent after a full-blown trial. On October 7, 1992, on the strength of the said writ of preliminary injunction in DARAB Case No. 161-'89, petitioners resumed occupation and cultivation of the subject land. Such actions resulted in the dispatch of several policemen to the area. They reminded petitioners of the writ of preliminary injunction issued earlier in Agrarian Case No. 2000 and ordered them to leave the land in dispute. Upon their refusal to leave, the policemen arrested them and subsequently charged them with resistance and/or disobedience to the lawful order of persons in authority before the Municipal Trial Court of Lubao. On the same day, however, they were released from police custody on the recognizance of Atty. Zenaida Ducut. Insisting on their right to work on the land in accordance with the writ issued in DARAB Case No. 161-'89, the following day, October 8, 1992, petitioners again entered the land. Without a warrant of arrest, herein respondent police officers named Jesus Maninang, Carlos Guinto, Jesus Kabiling, Edgardo Lalic and Dominador Lacanlale arrested petitioners for having entered the landholding and for resisting and intimidating said police officers. Recovered from petitioners' possession were seven (7) assorted bolos used in cultivating the land. Petitioners were detained at the municipal jail of Lubao, Pampanga on October 8, 1992. After the filing of the information for direct assault or on October 23, 1992, petitioners filed before this Court a petition for habeas corpus under G.R. No. 107399 questioning the legality of their arrest and detention. On October 28, 1992, this Court issued the writ returnable to the Acting Presiding Justice of the Court of the Appeals. The return of the writ was filed on November 9, 1992. Issue: Whether or not the arrest without warrant is valid.

Ruling: In fine, since at the time the petitioners were arrested, the PNP team was enforcing a lawful order of the same RTC and in seriously resisting the same the appellants intimidated the PNP team committing the alleged crime of Direct Assault Upon An Agent of A Person In Authority, a warrant was not necessary for their arrest, as provided in Sec. 5(a), Rule 113, Rules on Criminal Procedure, to wit: Sec. 5. Arrest without warrant; when lawful. A peace officer or private person may, without a warrant, arrest a person; (a) When an offense has in fact just been committed, and he has personal knowledge of facts indicating that the person to be arrested has committed it;
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In the light of the foregoing, the issue regarding the validity of the four warrants of arrest issued against the petitioners need not be taken up. Let it also be stated that there is no explicit rule requiring a judge, after an accused has been arrested without a warrant for an offense cognizable by the regional trial court and later charged in a complaint or information comformably with the provisions of Rule 112, Section 7 of the 1985 Rules on Criminal Procedure to still issue a warrant of arrest or order of commitment for the said accused (Re: Petition for Habeas Corpus of Gloria Jopson Asuncion [G.R. L-No. 84907]). As explained by the Supreme Court, such rule is not provided since the accused is already under detention so that the issuance of a warrant for his arrest or an order for his commitment would be an absolute superfluity, considering that the need of a warrant of arrest arises only when the accused is at large as under Rule 113, Section 1 of the 1985 Rules of Criminal Procedure means "the taking of a person in custody in order that he may be bound to answer for the commission of an offense," and that the obvious purpose of the warrant is for the court to acquire jurisdiction over the person of the accused (Re: Petition of Habeas Corpus of Gloria Jopson Asuncion, supra). The instant petition for review on certiorari is hereby DENIED.

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Rule 114: Bail


G.R. No. L-31665 August 6, 1975 LEONARDO ALMEDA, petitioner, vs. HON. ONOFRE A. VILLALUZ, in his capacity as presiding judge of the Circuit Criminal Court, Seventh Judicial District, Pasig, Rizal, and HON. GREGORIO PINEDA, City Fiscal of Pasay City, respondents. Facts: The petitioner Leonardo Almeda (alias Nardong Paa) was charged, together with five others, with the crime of qualified theft of a motor vehicle in the Circuit Criminal Court of Pasig, Rizal, presided by the respondent Judge Onofre Villauz. The amount of the bond recommended for the provisional release of Almeda was P15,000, and this was approved by the respondent judge with a direction that it be posted entirely in cash. At the hearing of February 18, 1970, Almeda asked the trial court to allow him to post a surety bond in lieu of the cash bond required of him. This request was denied, and so was an oral motion for reconsideration, on the ground that the amended information imputed habitual delinquency and recidivism on the part of Almeda. Issue: Whether or not the respondent judge has the authority to require a strictly cash bond and disallow the petitioner's attempt to post a surety bond for his provisional liberty. Ruling: As defined by section 1 of Rule 114 of the Rules of Court, bail is "the security required and given for the release of a person who is in the custody of the law, that he will appear before any court in which his appearance may be required as stipulated in the bail bond or recognizance." The purpose of requiring bail is to relieve an accused from imprisonment until his conviction and yet secure his appearance at the trial. In this jurisdiction, the accused, as of right, is entitled to bail prior to conviction except when he is charged with a capital offense and the evidence of guilt is strong. This right is guaranteed by the Constitution, and may not be denied even where the accused has previously escaped detention, or by reason of his prior absconding. In order to safeguard the right of an accused to bail, the Constitution further provides that "excessive bail shall not be required." This is logical cause the imposition of an unreasonable bail may negate the very right itself. We have thus held that "where conditions imposed upon a defendant seeking bail would amount to a refusal thereof and render nugatory the constitutional right to bail, we would not hesitate to exercise our supervisory powers to provide the required remedy." Coming to the issue at hand, the amount fixed for bail, while reasonable if considered in terms of surety or property bonds, may be excessive if demanded in the form of cash. A surety or property bond does not require an actual financial outlay on the part of the bondsman or the property owner, and in the case of the bondsman the bond may be obtained by the accused upon the payment of a relatively small premium. Only the reputation or credit standing of the bondsman or the expectancy of the price at which the property can be sold, is placed in the hands of the court to guarantee the production of the
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body of the accused at the various proceedings leading to his conviction or acquittal. Upon the other hand, the posting of a cash bond would entail a transfer of assets into the possession of the court, and its procurement could work untold hardship on the part of the accused as to have the effect of altogether denying him his constitutional right to bail. Aside from the foregoing, the condition that the accused may have provisional liberty only upon his posting of a cash bond is abhorrent to the nature of bail and transgresses our law on the matter. The sole purpose of bail is to insure the attendance of the accused when required by the court, and there should be no suggestion of penalty on the part of the accused nor revenue on the part of the government. The allowance of a cash bond in lieu of sureties is authorized in this jurisdiction only because our rules expressly provide for it. Were this not the case, the posting of bail by depositing cash with the court cannot be countenanced because, strictly speaking, the very nature of bail presupposes the attendance of sureties to whom the body of the prisoner can be delivered. And even where cash bail is allowed, the option to deposit cash in lieu of a surety bond primarily belongs to the accused. This is clearly deducible from the language of section 14 of Rule 114 of the Rules of Court: SEC. 14. Deposit of money as bail. At any time after the amount of bail is fixed by order, the defendant, instead of giving bail, may deposit with the nearest collector of internal revenue, or provincial, city, or municipal treasurer the sum mentioned in the order, and upon delivering to the court a proper certificate of the deposit, must be discharged from custody. Money thus deposited, shall be applied to the payment of the fine and costs for which judgment may be given; and the surplus, if any, shall be returned to the defendant. Thus, the trial court may not reject otherwise acceptable sureties and insist that the accused obtain his provisional liberty only thru a cash bond. But while we repudiate the particular measure adopted by the respondent judge, we cannot fault the motive that caused him to demur to the petitioner's offer of a surety bond. Based on the petitioner's past record, the range of his career in crime weighs heavily against letting him off easily on a middling amount of bail. The likelihood of his jumping bail or committing other harm to the citizenry while on provisional liberty is a consideration that simply cannot be ignored. Fortunately, the court is not without devices with which to meet the situation. First, it could increase the amount of the bail bond to an appropriate level. Second, as part of the power of the court over the person of the accused and for the purpose of discouraging likely commission of other crimes by a notorious defendant while on provisional liberty, the latter could be required, as one of the conditions of his bail bond, to report in person periodically to the court and make an accounting of his movements. And third, the accused might be warned, though this warning is not essential to the requirements of due process, that under the 1973 Constitution "Trial may proceed notwithstanding his absence provided that he has been duly notified and his failure to appear is unjustified." With respect to the amount of the bail bond, the trial court is well advised to consider, inter alia, the following factors, where applicable: (1) the ability of the accused to give bail: (2) the nature of the offense;
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(3) the penalty for the offense charged; (4) the character and reputation of the accused (5) the health of the accused; (6) the character and strength of the evidence; (7) the probability of the accused's appearance or non-appearance at the trial; (8) forfeiture of previous bonds; (9) whether the accused was a fugitive from justice when arrested; and (10) whether the accused is under bond for appearance at trial in other cases. It is not amiss, at this point, to remind all courts to exercise extreme care and caution in the screening of bondsmen and sureties in regard to their reputation, solvency and promptitude. Aside from the other precautions hitherto considered useful courts should see to it that all surety bonds are accompanied by corresponding clearances from the Office of the Insurance Commissioner. Bondsmen who cannot make good their undertaking render inutile all efforts at making the bail system work in this jurisdiction. ACCORDINGLY, the order of the respondent judge of February 18, 1970 denying the motion of the petitioner Almeda that he be allowed to post a surety bond instead of a cash bond is hereby set aside, without prejudice, however, to increasing the amount of the bail bond and/or the imposition of such conditions as the respondent judge might consider desirable and proper for the purpose of insuring the attendance of the petitioner at the trial, provided they are consistent with the views herein expressed. No costs. A.M. No. MTJ-97-1139 October 16, 1997 ROBERTO ESPIRITU, complainant, vs. JUDGE EDUARDO JOVELLANOS, 8th Municipal Circuit Trial Court, Alcala-Bautista, Pangasinan,respondent. {Backround of the case: Respondent is judge of the 8th Municipal Circuit Trial Court of AlcalaBautista, Pangasinan. He is charged with ignorance of the law, grave abuse of authority, and gross partiality in connection with the preliminary investigation of Criminal Case No. 2346 for frustrated murder which the herein complainant, Roberto Espiritu, had filed against Weny Dumlao. In his affidavit in Criminal Case No. 2346, Roberto Espiritu, as complainant, alleged that at around 7:30 in the evening of July 16, 1994, while he was with a group which included Eulogio Pabunan, Arnel Guerra, Januario Peregrino, and Marcelino Bautista, Weny Dumlao approached him and fired at him three times, as a result of which complainant was wounded; that complainant was able to run away; and that Dumlao wanted to kill complainant because the latter had filed a case against Dumlao's brother, Victor, for the murder of complainant's son Rolly. On the basis of this affidavit and those or Arnel Guerra and Eulogio Pabunan, SPO II Eduardo R. Yadao filed a criminal complaint for frustrated murder on August 10, 1994 in respondent's court.} Facts: After conducting a preliminary examination, respondent judge ordered on August 18, 1994 the arrest of Dumlao and fixed the amount of bail for his provisional liberty at P20,000.00. However, in an order dated September 7, 1994, he reduced the amount of the
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bail to P10,000.00, stating that Dumlao's father had asked for the reduction. On September 12, 1994, he ordered "any peace officer under whose custody [Dumlao] may be found" to release the latter in view of the fact that Dumlao had posted bail for P10,000.00. Then on October 12, 1994 he dismissed the complaint, citing, among other reasons, the fact that Dumlao had filed a case against Roberto Espiritu and others as a result of the same incident complained of. It appears that Dumlao had filed on July 27, 1994 a countercharge against complainant and others with the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor in Villasis, Pangasinan for attempted murder and illegal possession of firearm. Dumlao claimed that as he approached Espiritu's group, Arnel Guerra shot him, although Guerra missed him; that as he ran towards his house, other members of the group also fired at him; and that Espiritu's group challenged him and his father to come out and fight. Dumlao's complaint was dismissed on August 15, 1994 for insufficiency of evidence. After a reinvestigation of the two cases, however, Assistant City Prosecutor Paz de G. Peralta directed the filing of an information for attempted murder against complainant Roberto Espiritu, Arnel Guerra, Andres Espiritu, Marlino Bautista, Januario Peregrino, Abrillo Peregrino, Eulogio Pabunan, Dario Pabunan, and Landio Pabunan even as she affirmed the dismissal of criminal case against Dumlao. Complainants: This was not the first time that respondent judge had shown ignorance of the rules on criminal procedure, because on September 29, 1994, in People of the Philippines v. Cesario Sanchez, respondent judge had been reprimanded by the Regional Trial Court of Villasis, Pangasinan (Branch 50) for approving the bail bond of the accused when the latter had not yet been arrested. On June 26, 1995, the Court referred the case to Judge Pedro C. Cacho of the Regional Trial Court, at Tayug, Pangasinan for investigation, report, and recommendation. On October 6, 1995, Judge Cacho submitted his report, recommending that respondent judge be fined in the amount of P3,000.00 and reprimanded for "neglect of duty, partiality, and/or inefficiency tantamount to grave ignorance of the law." Issue: Whether or not respondent judge is guilty of ignorance of the law. The charges against respondent judge relate to basically two acts committed by him: (1) granting bail to Weny Dumlao in the reduced amount of P10,000.00 and (2) dismissing the criminal complaint against Dumlao. Ruling: With respect to the granting of bail to Weny Dumlao and the reduction of its amount to P10,000.00: The municipal courts are now courts of records. Per order dated September 7, 1994. . . . the Honorable Judge reduced the amount of bail His Honor set in a previous order (Page 12, Ibid.), from P20,000.00 to P10,000.00 acting supposedly upon the request of the father of the accused. However, there is no such request for reduction of bail on file with the records of the case; At the time the Honorable Judge acted on the "request" for reduction of bail, the accused was not under detention as he was not arrested nor had he voluntarily surrendered as borne by the records. Accordingly, the Court has not yet acquired
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jurisdiction over the person of the accused, so the Honorable Judge cannot act on such "request" for reduction of bail even if interceded by the father of the accused; The amount at which the bail was reduced: P10,000.00 is not commensurate with the gravity of the crime charged, an evident manifestation of the Judge's injudiciousness in the exercise of his authority and discretion. The bail bond guide of 1981 provides for the amount P12,500.00; It is indeed true that, in general, bail presupposes that the applicant is under arrest, detained, or otherwise deprived of his liberty. In this case, it appears that on July 16, 1994, shortly after the incident, Weny Dumlao surrendered to the police, but the next day (July 17, 1994) he was released to the custody of Assistant Provincial Prosecutor Emiliano Matro. Prosecutor Matro testified that upon DECS Supervisor Nuelito Dumlao's request, he agreed to take custody of Dumlao for which reason Weny Dumlao was released by the police. According to Matro, this was not the first time that he took custody of one who was under investigation. Apparently, therefore, when Dumlao applied for bail on September 7, 1994 to respondent judge, Dumlao was not in custody. Nor was his release to the custody of Assistant City Prosecutor Matro in accordance with law. But although then not in legal custody, Dumlao subsequently submitted himself to the jurisdiction of the court when on September 7, 1994 he personally asked respondent judge to admit him to bail and reduce its amount. Under the 1981 Bail Bond Guide (Ministry Circular No. 36, September 1, 1981), the amount of bail in cases of frustrated murder is P12,500.00. In its Circular No. 10 dated July 3, 1987, the Department of Justice noted that the amounts fixed in the Bail Bond Guide had become "unrealistic and impractical for the purpose of assuring the presence and/or appearance of persons facing charges in court" and accordingly directed that the amount of bail be computed at the rate of P10,000.00 per year of imprisonment based on the medium penalty imposable for the offense. Judged by this standard, the P10,000.00 bail fixed in this case was inadequate. Either respondent judge was grossly ignorant of the law or he deliberately disregarded it to favor the accused. Considering that part of his duties as a judge is conducting preliminary investigations, it is his duty to keep abreast of the laws, rulings, and jurisprudence regarding this matter. It is apparent that he has not. In failing to do so he failed to live up to the injunction of the Code of Judicial Conduct to "maintain professional competence." The maxim ignorance of the law excuses no one has special application to judges. Further demonstrating either deliberate disregard of the law of gross ignorance of the same, respondent judge granted bail to Weny Dumlao without notice to the prosecution, in violation of Rule 114, 18. In this case, the failure to give notice to the prosecution may be due to the fact that there was no written motion filed but only, as respondent judge himself admitted, an oral request by Dumlao and his father that the amount of the bail be reduced. What respondent judge should have done was to have Dumlao put his request in writing and then schedule the incident for hearing with notice to the prosecution. Instead, he readily granted the request, which indicates rather clearly respondent judge's partiality. This partiality was nowhere more evident than in the private conference which he had with the Dumalaos in
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his chambers without the presence of the opposing party, the complainant in this case. Time and again we have admonished judges not only to be impartial but also to appear to be so. For appearance is an essential manifestation of reality. 23 Departing from this established norm, respondent judge signed his September 7, 1994 order reducing the amount of bail to P10,000.00 and then told Dumlao to inform the police about it so that he would be released. The Court finds Judge Eduardo U. Jovellanos GUILTY of gross misconduct and imposes on him a FINE of P20,000.00, with a WARNING that repetition of the same or similar offenses will be dealt with more severely. G.R. No. 189122 March 17, 2010 JOSE ANTONIO LEVISTE, Petitioner, vs. THE COURT OF APPEALS and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondents. Facts: Charged with the murder of Rafael de las Alas, petitioner Jose Antonio Leviste was convicted by the Regional Trial Court of Makati City for the lesser crime of homicide and sentenced to suffer an indeterminate penalty of six years and one day of prision mayor as minimum to 12 years and one day of reclusion temporal as maximum. He appealed his conviction to the Court of Appeals. Pending appeal, he filed an urgent application for admission to bail pending appeal, citing his advanced age and health condition, and claiming the absence of any risk or possibility of flight on his part. The Court of Appeals denied petitioners application for bail. It invoked the bedrock principle in the matter of bail pending appeal, that the discretion to extend bail during the course of appeal should be exercised "with grave caution and only for strong reasons." Citing well-established jurisprudence, it ruled that bail is not a sick pass for an ailing or aged detainee or a prisoner needing medical care outside the prison facility. It found that petitioner failed to show that he suffers from ailment of such gravity that his continued confinement during trial will permanently impair his health or put his life in danger. x x x Notably, the physical condition of [petitioner] does not prevent him from seeking medical attention while confined in prison, though he clearly preferred to be attended by his personal physician. For purposes of determining whether petitioners application for bail could be allowed pending appeal, the Court of Appeals also considered the fact of petitioners conviction. It made a preliminary evaluation of petitioners case and made a prima facie determination that there was no reason substantial enough to overturn the evidence of petitioners guilt. Petitioners motion for reconsideration was denied. Issue: Whether or not his application for bail be granted.

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Contention of Leviste: Petitioner claims that, in the absence of any of the circumstances mentioned in the third paragraph of Section 5, Rule 114 of the Rules of Court, an application for bail by an appellant sentenced by the Regional Trial Court to a penalty of more than six years imprisonment should automatically be granted. Note: Should the court grant the application, the accused may be allowed to continue on provisional liberty during the pendency of the appeal under the same bail subject to the consent of the bondsman. Ruling: No. Petitioner filed this special civil action for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court to assail the denial by the Court of Appeals of his urgent application for admission to bail pending appeal. While the said remedy may be resorted to challenge an interlocutory order, such remedy is proper only where the interlocutory order was rendered without or in excess of jurisdiction or with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction. It cannot be said that the Court of Appeals issued the assailed resolution without or in excess of its jurisdiction. One, pending appeal of a conviction by the Regional Trial Court of an offense not punishable by death, reclusion perpetua, or life imprisonment, admission to bail is expressly declared to be discretionary. Two, the discretion to allow or disallow bail pending appeal in a case such as this where the decision of the trial court convicting the accused changed the nature of the offense from non-bailable to bailable is exclusively lodged by the rules with the appellate court. Thus, the Court of Appeals had jurisdiction to hear and resolve petitioners urgent application for admission to bail pending appeal. Neither can it be correctly claimed that the Court of Appeals committed grave abuse of discretion when it denied petitioners application for bail pending appeal. Grave abuse of discretion is not simply an error in judgment but it is such a capricious and whimsical exercise of judgment which is tantamount to lack of jurisdiction. Ordinary abuse of discretion is insufficient. The abuse of discretion must be grave, that is, the power is exercised in an arbitrary or despotic manner by reason of passion or personal hostility. It must be so patent and gross as to amount to evasion of positive duty or to a virtual refusal to perform the duty enjoined by or to act at all in contemplation of the law. In other words, for a petition for certiorari to prosper, there must be a clear showing of caprice and arbitrariness in the exercise of discretion. Petitioner never alleged that, in denying his application for bail pending appeal, the Court of Appeals exercised its judgment capriciously and whimsically. No capriciousness or arbitrariness in the exercise of discretion was ever imputed to the appellate court. Nor could any such implication or imputation be inferred. As observed earlier, the Court of Appeals exercised grave caution in the exercise of its discretion. The denial of petitioners application for bail pending appeal was not unreasonable but was the result of a thorough assessment of petitioners claim of ill health. By making a preliminary appra isal of the merits of the case for the purpose of granting bail, the court also determined whether the appeal was frivolous or not, or whether it raised a substantial question. The appellate court
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did not exercise its discretion in a careless manner but followed doctrinal rulings of this Court. At best, petitioner only points out the Court of Appeals erroneous application and interpretation of Section 5, Rule 114 of the Rules of Court. However, the extraordinary writ of certiorari will not be issued to cure errors in proceedings or erroneous conclusions of law or fact. Therefore, any application for bail pending appeal should be viewed from the perspective of two stages: (1) the determination of discretion stage, where the appellate court must determine whether any of the circumstances in the third paragraph of Section 5, Rule 114 is present; this will establish whether or not the appellate court will exercise sound discretion or stringent discretion in resolving the application for bail pending appeal and (2) the exercise of discretion stage where, assuming the appellants case falls within the first scenario allowing the exercise of sound discretion, the appellate court may consider all relevant circumstances, other than those mentioned in the third paragraph of Section 5, Rule 114, including the demands of equity and justice; on the basis thereof, it may either allow or disallow bail. On the other hand, if the appellants case falls within the second scenario, the appellate courts stringent discretion requires that the exercise thereof be primarily focused on the determination of the proof of the presence of any of the circumstances that are prejudicial to the allowance of bail. This is so because the existence of any of those circumstances is by itself sufficient to deny or revoke bail. Nonetheless, a finding that none of the said circumstances is present will not automatically result in the grant of bail. Such finding will simply authorize the court to use the less stringent sound discretion approach. Petitioner disregards the fine yet substantial distinction between the two different situations that are governed by the third paragraph of Section 5, Rule 114. Instead, petitioner insists on a simplistic treatment that unduly dilutes the import of the said provision and trivializes the established policy governing the grant of bail pending appeal. In particular, a careful reading of petitioners arguments reveals that it interprets the third paragraph of Section 5, Rule 114 to cover all situations where the penalty imposed by the trial court on the appellant is imprisonment exceeding six years. For petitioner, in such a situation, the grant of bail pending appeal is always subject to limited discretion, that is, one restricted to the determination of whether any of the five bailnegating circumstances exists. The implication of this position is that, if any such circumstance is present, then bail will be denied. Otherwise, bail will be granted pending appeal. Petitioners theory therefore reduces the appellate court into a mere fact-finding body whose authority is limited to determining whether any of the five circumstances mentioned in the third paragraph of Section 5, Rule 114 exists. Furthermore, this Court has been guided by the following: The importance attached to conviction is due to the underlying principle that bail should be granted only where it is uncertain whether the accused is guilty or innocent, and therefore, where that uncertainty is removed by conviction it would, generally speaking, be absurd to admit to bail. After a person has been tried and convicted the presumption of innocence which may be relied upon in prior applications is rebutted, and the
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burden is upon the accused to show error in the conviction. From another point of view it may be properly argued that the probability of ultimate punishment is so enhanced by the conviction that the accused is much more likely to attempt to escape if liberated on bail than before conviction. Final words: Considering that the accused was in fact convicted by the trial court, allowance of bail pending appeal should be guided by a stringent-standards approach. This judicial disposition finds strong support in the history and evolution of the rules on bail and the language of Section 5, Rule 114 of the Rules of Court. It is likewise consistent with the trial courts initial determination that the accused should be in prison. Furthermore, letting the accused out on bail despite his conviction may destroy the deterrent effect of our criminal laws. This is especially germane to bail pending appeal because long delays often separate sentencing in the trial court and appellate review. In addition, at the postconviction stage, the accused faces a certain prison sentence and thus may be more likely to flee regardless of bail bonds or other release conditions. Finally, permitting bail too freely in spite of conviction invites frivolous and time-wasting appeals which will make a mockery of our criminal justice system and court processes. The petition is hereby DISMISSED. G.R. No. 141529 June 6, 2001 FRANCISCO YAP, JR., aka EDWIN YAP, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS and THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Facts: The right against excessive bail, and the liberty of abode and travel, are being invoked to set aside two resolutions of the Court of Appeals which fixed bail at P5,500,000.00 and imposed conditions on change of residence and travel abroad. For misappropriating amounts equivalent to P5,500,000.00, petitioner was convicted of estafa by the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City. He sentenced to four (4) years and two (2) months of prision correctional, as minimum, to eight (8) years of prision mayor as maximum, "in addition to one (1) year for each additional P10,000.00 in excess of P22,000.00 but in no case shall it exceed twenty (20) years." He filed a notice of appeal, and moved to be allowed provisional liberty under the cash bond he had filed earlier in the proceedings. The motion was denied by the trial court. After the records of the case were transmitted to the Court of Appeals, petitioner filed with the said court a Motion to Fix Bail For the Provisional Liberty of Accused-Appellant Pending Appeal, invoking the last paragraph of Section 5, Rule 114 of the 1997 Revised Rules of Court, which states that The appellate court may, motu proprio or on motion of any party, review the resolution of the Regional Trail Court after notice to the adverse party in either court. Asked to comment on this motion, the Solicitor General opined, on the issue of bail, that petitioner may be allowed to post bail in the amount of P5,500,000.00. Petitioner filed a Reply, contending that the proposed bail of P5,500,000.00 was violative of his right against excessive bail and that bail in the instant case be set at P40,000.00 based on the 1996 Bail Bond Guide (the current Bail Bond Guide, issued on August 29, 2000,
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maintains recommended bail at P40,000.00 for estafa where the amount of fraud is P142,000.00 or over and the imposable penalty 20 years of reclusion temporal). Upholding the recommendation of the Solicitor General, the Court of Appeals granted the Motion and allowed the petitioner to post bail in the amount of Five Million Five Hundred Thousand (P5,500,000.00) Pesos, subject to conditions limiting his liberty of abode and travel. Issues: 1. The respondent Court of Appeals committed grave abuse of discretion in fixing the bail of the provisional liberty of petitioner pending appeal in the amount of P5 .5 million. 2. The respondent Court of Appeals committed grave abuse of discretion in basing the bail for the provisional liberty of the petitioner on his civil liability. Ruling: the petition is PARTIALLY GRANTED. Petitioner's bail pending appeal is reduced from P5,500,000.00 to P200,000.00. The purpose for bail is to guarantee the appearance of the accused at the trial, or whenever so required by the Court. The amount should be high enough to assure the presence of the accused when required but no higher than is reasonably calculated to fulfill this purpose. Under the circumstances of this case, we find that appropriate conditions have been imposed in the bail bond to ensure against the risk of flight, particularly, the combination of the hold-departure order and the requirement that petitioner inform the court of any change of residence and of his whereabouts. To fix bail at an amount equivalent to the civil liability of which petitioner is charged (in this case, P5,500,000.00).is to permit the impression that the amount paid as bail is an exaction of the civil liability that accused is charged of ; this we cannot allow because bail is not intended as a punishment, nor as a satisfaction of civil liability which should necessarily await the judgment of the appellate court . We find that the setting of the amount at P5,500,000.00 is unreasonable, excessive, and constitutes an effective denial of petitioner's right to bail. At the same time, we cannot yield to petitioner's submission that bail in the instant case be set at P40,000.00 based on the 1996 Bail Bond Guide. (The current Bail Bond Guide, issued on August 29, 2000, maintains recommended bail at P40,000.00 for estafa where the amount of fraud is P142,000.00 or over and the imposable penalty 20 years of reclusion temporal). In an earlier case, the Court adopted Senator Vicente J. Francisco's disquisition on why bail should be denied after judgment of conviction as a matter of wise discretion; thus: The importance attached to conviction is due to the underlying principle that bail should be granted only where it is uncertain whether the accused is guilty or innocent, and therefore, where that uncertainty is removed by conviction it would, generally speaking, be absurd to admit to bail. After a person has been tried and convicted the presumption of innocence which may be relied upon in prior applications is rebutted, and the burden is upon the accused to show error in the conviction. From another point of view it may be properly argued that the probability of ultimate punishment is so enhanced by the conviction that
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the accused is much more likely to attempt to escape if liberated on bail than before conviction. G.R. No. 129670 February 1, 2000 Manolet Lavides, petitioner, vs. Honorable Court of Appeals; Hon. Rosalina L. Luna Pison, Judge Presiding over Branch 107, RTC, Quezon City; and People of the Philippines, respondents. Facts: On 3 April 1997, the parents of Lorelie San Miguel reported to the police that their daughter, then 16 years old, had been contacted by Manolet Lavides for an assignation that night at Lavides' room at the Metropolitan Hotel in Diliman, Quezon City. Apparently, this was not the first time the police received reports of Lavides' activities. An entrapment operation was therefore set in motion. At around 8:20 p.m. of the same date, the police knocked at the door of Room 308 of the Metropolitan Hotel where Lavides was staying. When Lavides opened the door, the police saw him with Lorelie, who was wearing only a tshirt and an underwear, whereupon they arrested him. Based on the sworn statement of Lorelie and the affidavits of the arresting officers, which were submitted at the inquest, an information for violation of Article III, 5(b) of RA 7610 (An Act Providing for Stronger Deterrence and Special Protection against Child Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination, Providing Penalties for its Violation, and other Purposes) was filed on 7 April 1997 against Lavides in the Regional Trial Court, Quezon City (Criminal Case Q-97-70550). Lavides filed an "Omnibus Motion (1) For Judicial Determination of Probable Cause; (2) For the Immediate Release of the Accused Unlawfully Detained on an Unlawful Warrantless Arrest; and (3) In the Event of Adverse Resolution of the Above Incident, Herein Accused be Allowed to Bail as a Matter of Right under the Law on Which He is Charged." Nine more informations for child abuse were filed against Lavides by Lorelie San Miguel, and by three other minor children. In all the cases, it was alleged that, on various dates mentioned in the informations, Lavides had sexual intercourse with complainants who had been "exploited in prostitution and given money as payment for the said acts of sexual intercourse." No bail was recommended. Nonetheless, Lavides filed separate applications for bail in the 9 cases. The trial court issued an order resolving Lavides' Omnibus Motion. finding that, in Criminal Case Q-97-70550, there is probable cause to hold the accused under detention, his arrest having been made in accordance with the Rules, and thus he must therefore remain under detention until further order of the Court; and that the accused is entitled to bail in all the case, and that he is granted the right to post bail in the amount of P80,000.00 for each case or a total of P800,000.00 for all the cases under certain conditions. On 20 May 1997, Lavides filed a motion to quash the informations against him, except those filed in Criminal Case Q-97-70550 or Q-97-70866. Pending resolution of his motion, he asked the trial court to suspend the arraignment scheduled on 23 May 1997. Then on 22 May 1997, he filed a motion in which he prayed that the amounts of bail bonds be reduced to P40,000.00 for each case and that the same be done prior to his arraignment.
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On 23 May 1997, the trial court, in separate orders, denied Lavides' motions to reduce bail bonds, to quash the informations, and to suspend arraignment. Accordingly, Lavides was arraigned during which he pleaded not guilty to the charges against him and then ordered him released upon posting bail bonds in the total amount of P800,000.00, subject to the conditions in the 16 May 1997 order and the "hold-departure" order of 10 April 1997. The pre-trial conference was set on 7 June 1997. On 2 June 1997, Lavides filed a petition for certiorari in the Court of Appeals, assailing the trial court's order, dated 16 May 1997, and its two orders, dated 23 May 1997, denying his motion to quash and maintaining the conditions set forth in its order of 16 May 1997, respectively. While the case was pending in the Court of Appeals, two more informations were filed against Lavides, bringing the total number of cases against him to 12, which were all consolidated. On 30 June 1997, the Court of Appeals rendered its decision, invalidating the first two conditions under 16 May 1997 order -- i.e. that (1) the accused shall not be entitled to a waiver of appearance during the trial of these cases. He shall and must always be present at the hearings of these cases; and (2) In the event that he shall not be able to do so, his bail bonds shall be automatically cancelled and forfeited, warrants for his arrest shall be immediately issued and the cases shall proceed to trial in absentia -- and maintained the orders in all other respects. Lavides filed the petition for review with the Supreme Court. Issue: Whether or not the court should impose the condition that the accused shall ensure his presence during the trial of these cases before the bail can be granted. Ruling: In cases where it is authorized, bail should be granted before arraignment, otherwise the accused may be precluded from filing a motion to quash. For if the information is quashed and the case is dismissed, there would then be no need for the arraignment of the accused. Further, the trial court could ensure Lavides' presence at the arraignment precisely by granting bail and ordering his presence at any stage of the proceedings, such as arraignment. Under Rule 114, Section 2(b) of the Rules on Criminal Procedure, one of the conditions of bail is that "the accused shall appear before the proper court whenever so required by the court or these Rules," while under Rule 116, Section 1(b) the presence of the accused at the arraignment is required. To condition the grant of bail to an accused on his arraignment would be to place him in a position where he has to choose between (1) filing a motion to quash and thus delay his release on bail because until his motion to quash can be resolved, his arraignment cannot be held, and (2) foregoing the filing of a motion to quash so that he can be arraigned at once and thereafter be released on bail. These scenarios certainly undermine the accused's constitutional right not to be put on trial except upon valid complaint or information sufficient to charge him with a crime and his right to bail. The court's strategy to ensure the Lavides' presence at the arraignment violates the latter's constitutional rights.

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A.M. NO. RTJ-06-2018 (Formerly Adm. Matter OCA-IPI No. 05-2360-RTJ) August 3, 2007 Office of the Solicitor General, complainant, vs. Judge Antonio De Castro, Presiding Judge, RTC Branch 3 Manila, respondent Facts: The Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) filed an administrative complaint against Executive Judge Antonio Eugenio, Jr. and Judge Antonio I. De Castro (respondent), for (a) knowingly rendering an unjust judgment; (b) grossly disregarding the law and prevailing jurisprudence; and (c) dishonesty and abuse of authority. The complaint stemmed from the Order issued by respondent in the habeas corpus proceedings and raffled to respondents sala. Said order temporarily restrained the deportation of a Chinese national, Gao Yuan, for 17 days. Complainant alleges that the order was in blatant disregard of Commonwealth Act (C.A.) No. 613 or the Philippine Immigration Act of 1940, as amended, the pertinent provisions of the Rules of Court on habeas corpus, and prevailing jurisprudence thereon. As to Judge Eugenio, Jr., he had earlier, issued an order restraining Gao Yuans deportation for 72 hours. The respondent promulgated an Order of Release directing Commissioner Fernandez of the Bureau of Immigration (BI) to immediately discharge the custody of Gao Yuan, she having filed her cash bond in the amount of P250,000.00. However, upon service of the order, the Bureau of Immigration refused to release Gao Yuan as there was no BI clearance. Commissioner Fernandez filed an Urgent Motion for Reconsideration of the said order. Complainant OSG contends that Gao Yuans release on bail is illegal since such falls within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Bureau of Immigration and not in the regular courts pursuant to Section 37(e) of C.A. No. 613. Citing Commissioner Rodriguez v. Judge Bonifacio, complainant contends that the RTC has no power to release the alien on bail even in habeas corpus proceedings. Issue: Whether or not Gao Yuan was held under lawful authority.

Ruling: The Court finds respondent Judge Antonio I. De Castro of RTC Branch 3, Manila, guilty of gross ignorance of the law and is hereby SUSPENDED for a period of THREE (3) MONTHS AND ONE (1) DAY without pay, with a WARNING that commission of a similar offense will be dealt with more severely. In the present case, there is no finding of bad faith or malice, but this does not excuse respondent. When the law is sufficiently basic, a judge owes it to his office to simply apply it, and anything less than that would be constitutive of gross ignorance of the law. In short, when the law is so elementary, not to be aware of it constitutes gross ignorance of the law. While judges should not be held accountable for every erroneous judgment rendered in good faith, such good faith is no defense where the basic issues are simple and the applicable legal principle evident and basic as to be beyond permissible margins of error. A judge is called upon to exhibit more than just a cursory acquaintance with statutes and procedural rules; it is imperative that he be conversant with basic legal principles and
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aware of well-settled authoritative doctrines. [46] Competence and diligence are prerequisites to the due performance of judicial office. When a judge displays an utter unfamiliarity with the law and the rules, he erodes the confidence of the public in the courts. There will be great faith in the administration of justice only if the party litigants believe that the occupants of the bench cannot justly be accused of apparent deficiency in their grasp of legal principles. For disregarding jurisprudential pronouncements and basic legal principles, respondent should be held liable. Under Section 8 of A.M. No. 01-8-10-SC, amending Rule 140 of the Rules of Court on the Discipline of Justices and Judges, which took effect on October 1, 2001, gross ignorance of the law is classified as a serious charge which carries with it a penalty of either dismissal from service, suspension from office without salary and other benefits for more than three (3) but not exceeding six (6) months, or a fine of more than P20,000.00 but not exceeding P40,000.00. Since it has not been established that the infraction was motivated by malice or bad faith, and in the absence of a showing that respondent had earlier been found to have committed an administrative offense, it is just and reasonable to impose upon him the penalty of suspension of three (3) months and one (1) day. G.R. No. 153675 April 19, 2007 Government of Hongkong Special Administrative Region, represented by the Philippine Department of Justice, petitioner vs. Hon. Felixberto T. Olalia Jr. and Juan Antonio Muoz, respondents. Facts: Juan Antonio Munoz, who was charged before the Hongkong Court with three (3) counts of the ffense of accepting an advantage as an agent, conspiracy to defraud, was penalized by a common law of Hongkong. A warrant of arrest was issued and if convicted, he may face jail terms. On September 23, 1999, He was arrested and detained. On November 22, 1999, Hongkong Special Administrative Region filed with the RTC of Manila a petition for his extradition. Juan Antonio Munoz filed a petition for bail, which Judge Felixberto Olalia granted. Petitioner (Hongkong Administrative), filed a petition to vacate such order, but it was denied by the same judge. Issue: Whether or not Juan Antonio Munoz has the right to post bail when there is nothing in the Constitution or Statutory law providing a potential extradite a right to bail. Ruling: The Philippines committed to uphold the fundamental human rights as well as value the worth and dignity of every person (Sec. 2 Art II 1987 Constitution) have the obligation to make available to every person under detention such remedies which safeguard their fundamental right to liberty. The right of a prospective extraditee to apply for bail must be viewed in the light of the various treaty obligations of the Philippines concerning respect for the promotion and
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protection of human rights. Under these treaties, the presumption lies in favor of human liberty. While our extradition law does not provide for the grant of bail to an extradite, however, there is no provision prohibiting him or her from filing a motion for bail, a right to due process under the Constitution. The time-honored principle of pacta sunt servanda demands that the Philippines honor its obligations under the Extradition Treaty it entered into with the Hongkong Special Administrative Region. Failure to comply with these obligations is a setback in our foreign relations and defeats the purpose of extradition. G.R. No. 157977 EDUARDO TOLENTINO RODRIGUEZ and IMELDA GENER RODRIGUEZ, petitioners, vs. THE HONORABLE PRESIDING JUDGE OF THE REGIONAL TRIAL COURT OF MANILA BRANCH 17, GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, represented by the Philippine Department of Justice, and DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION, respondents. Before the Supreme Court en banc is a special civil action for certiorari and prohibition directed against the Orders dated May 7, 2003 and May 9, 2003 of the Regional Trial Court of Manila, Branch 17 in Case No. 01-190375, which cancelled the bail of petitioners and denied their motion for reconsideration, respectively. Facts: The case stemmed from the petition for extradition filed on March 12, 2001 by the Government of the United States of America (US government) through the Department of Justice (DOJ) against the petitioners. After their arrest, petitioners applied for bail which the trial court granted on September 25, 2001. The bail was set for one million pesos for each. Petitioners then posted cash bonds. The US government moved for reconsideration of the grant of bail, but the motion was denied by the trial court. Unsatisfied, the US government filed a petition for certiorari. Thereafter, The Supreme Court directed the trial court to resolve the matter of bail which, according to its November 28, 2001 Order, shall be subject to whatever ruling that this Court may have in the similar case of Mark Jimenez entitled Government of the United States of America v. Purganan, docketed as G.R No. 148571. The trial court, without prior notice and hearing, cancelled the cash bond of the petitioners and ordered the issuance of a warrant of arrest, to wit: Accordingly, following the En Banc Decision of the Supreme Court in G.R. No. 148571 dated September 24, 2002 to the effect that extraditees are not entitled to bail while the extradition proceedings are pending (page 1, En Banc Decision in G.R. No. 148571), let a warrant of arrest issue against the herein respondents sans any bail, for implementation by the Sheriff or any member of any law enforcement agency in line with Section 19 of Presidential Decree No. 1069.
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Petitioners filed a very urgent motion for the reconsideration of the cancellation of their bail. The motion was heard and denied on May 9, 2003. Issues: 1. In an extradition case, is prior notice and hearing required before bail is cancelled? 2. What constitutes a special circumstance to be exempt from the no-bail rule in extradition cases? Ruling: The instant petition is GRANTED IN PART. The Orders dated May 7, 2003 and May 9, 2003 of the RTC Manila Branch 17 in Case No. 01-190375 are REVERSED and SET ASIDE, as far as petitioner IMELDA GENER RODRIGUEZ is concerned. IMELDA GENER RODRIGUEZ is declared ENTITLED TO BAIL, We emphasize that bail may be granted to a possible extraditee only upon a clear and convincing showing (1) that he will not be a flight risk or a danger to the community, and (2) that there exist special, humanitarian and compelling circumstances. Considering that Imelda Rodriguez has not been shown to be a flight risk nor a danger to the community; that she and her husband had posted a cash bond of P1 million each; that her husband had already gone on voluntary extradition and is presently in the USA undergoing trial; that the passport of co-petitioner is already in the possession of the authorities; that she never attempted to flee; that there is an existing hold-departure order against her; and that she is now in her sixties, sickly and under medical treatment, we believe that the benefits of continued temporary liberty on bail should not be revoked and their grant of bail should not be cancelled, without the co-petitioner being given notice and without her being heard why her temporary liberty should not be discontinued. Note: The issue has become moot and academic insofar as petitioner Eduardo Rodriguez is concerned. He is now in the USA facing the charges against him., Based on the record, we find that, absent prior notice and hearing, the bails cancellation was in violation of her right to due process tantamount to grave abuse of discretion. (3) ordered the WARRANT for her arrest REVOKED.

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G.R. No. 135012 September 7, 2004 ANITA ESTEBAN, petitioner vs. HON. REYNALDO A. ALHAMBRA, in his capacity as Presiding Judge, Regional Trial Court, Branch 39, San Jose City, and GERARDO ESTEBAN, respondents In this petition for certiorari, Anita Esteban seeks to annul the Orders dated July 9, 1998 and August 20, 1998 issued by Judge Reynaldo A. Alhambra, presiding judge of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 39, San Jose City, in four Criminal Cases Nos. SJC-88(95), SJC27(97), SJC-30(97) and SJC-31(97). The Orders denied petitioners application for cancellation of the cash bail posted in each case. Facts: Gerardo Esteban is the accused in these criminal cases. His sister-in-law, Anita Esteban, petitioner herein, posted cash bail of P20,000.00 in each case for his temporary liberty. While out on bail and during the pendency of the four criminal cases, Gerardo was again charged with another crime for which he was arrested and detained. Fed up with Gerardos actuation, petitioner refused to post another bail. Instead, on June 18, 1998, she filed with the trial court an application for the cancellation of the cash bonds she posted in the four criminal cases. She alleged therein that she is terminating th e cash bail by surrendering the accused who is now in jail as certified to by the City Jail Warden. In an Order dated July 9, 1998, respondent judge denied petitioners application for the cancellation of bail on the following grounds: In these cases, accused was allowed enjoyment of his provisional liberty after money was deposited with the Clerk of Court as cash bail. Applicantmovant (now petitioner) did not voluntarily surrender the accused. Instead, the accused was subsequently charged with another crime for which he was arrested and detained. His arrest and detention for another criminal case does not affect the character of the cash bail posted by applicant-movant in Criminal Cases Nos. SJC-88(95), SLC-27(97), SJC-30(97) and SJC-31(97) as deposited pending the trial of these cases. Money deposited as bail even though made by a third person is considered as the accuseds deposit where there is no relationship of principal and surety (State vs. Wilson, 65 Ohio L-Abs, 422, 115 NE 2d 193). Hence, the money so deposited takes the nature of property in custodia legis and is to be applied for payment of fine and costs. And such application will be made regardless of the fact that the money was deposited by a third person. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration but was denied in an Order dated August 20, 1998. Issue: Whether or not the judge, in an order denying the application for cancellation of bail, committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction.
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Ruling: The petition is DISMISSED. We fail to discern any taint of grave abuse of discretion on the part of respondent judge in denying petitioners application for cancellation of the accuseds cash bail. Petitioners submission is misplaced when she stated that by surrendering the accused who is now in jail, her application for cancellation of bail in the four criminal cases is allowed under Section 19, now Section 22, Rule 114 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, as amended, which provides: Sec. 22. Cancellation of bail. Upon application of the bondsmen, with due notice to the prosecutor, the bail may be cancelled upon surrender of the accused or proof of his death. The first paragraph of Section 22 contemplates of a situation where, among others, the surety or bondsman surrenders the accused to the court that ordered the latters arrest. Thereafter, the court, upon application by the surety or bondsman, cancels the bail bond. We hold that the cash bail cannot be cancelled. Petitioner did not surrender the accused, charged in the four criminal cases, to the trial court. The accused was arrested and detained because he was charged in a subsequent criminal case. Moreover, the bail bond posted for the accused was in the form of cash deposit which, as mandated by Section 14 (formerly Section 11) of the same Rule 114, shall be applied to the payment of fine and costs, and the excess, if any, shall be returned to the accused or to any person who made the deposit. Section 14 provides: Section 14. Deposit of cash as bail. The accused or any person acting in his behalf may deposit in cash with the nearest collector of internal revenue or provincial, city or municipal treasurer the amount of bail fixed by the court, or recommended by the prosecutor who investigated or filed the case. Upon submission of a proper certificate of deposit and a written undertaking showing compliance with the requirements of Section 2 of this Rule, the accused shall be discharged from custody. The money deposited shall be considered as bail and applied to the payment of fine and costs, while the excess, if any, shall be returned to the accused or to whoever made the deposit. The Rule thus treats a cash bail differently from other bail bonds. A cash bond may be posted either by the accused or by any person in his behalf. However, as far as the State is concerned, the money deposited is regarded as the money of the accused. Consequently, it can be applied in payment of any fine and costs that may be imposed by the court. This was the ruling of this Court as early as 1928 in Esler vs. Ledesma. Therein we declared that when a cash bail is allowed, the two parties to the transaction are the State and the defendant. Unlike other bail bonds, the money may then be used in the payment of that in which the State is concerned the fine and costs. The right of the government is in the nature of a lien on the money deposited. We further held in the same case that: x x x. Similar cases have frequently gained the attention of the courts in the United States in jurisdictions where statutes permit a deposit of money to be made in lieu of bail in criminal cases. The decisions are unanimous in holding
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that a fine imposed on the accused may be satisfied from the cash deposit; and this is true although the money has been furnished by a third person. This is so because the law contemplates that the deposit shall be made by the defendant. The money, x x x, must accordingly be treated as the property of the accused. As a result, the money could be applied in payment of any fine imposed and of the costs (People vs. Laidlaw [1886], Ct. of App. Of New York, 7 N. E., 910, a case frequently cited approvingly in other jurisdictions; State of Iowa vs. Owens [1900], 112 Iowa, 403; Mundell vs. Wells, supra.). But while as between the State and the accused the money deposited by a third person for the release of the accused is regarded as the money of the accused, it is not so regarded for any other purpose. As between the accused and a third person, the residue of the cash bail is not subject to the claim of a creditor of property obtain (Wright & Taylor vs. Dougherty [1908], 138 Iowa, 195; People vs. Gould [1902], 78 N. Y. Sup., 279; Mundell vs. Wells, supra.). G.R. No. 131909 February 18, 1999 People of the Philippines, petitioner, v. Hon. Alfredo Cabral, Presiding Judge, RTC, Branch 30, Camarines Sur and Roderick Odiamar, respondents. Assailed before this Court is the August 1, 1997 decision of the Court of Appeals in CA GR No. 42318. Said decision affirmed the March 24, 1995 and June 14, 1996 orders of the lower court granting accused-respondents Motion for Bail and denying petitioner Peoples Motions "to Recall and Invalidate Order of March 24, 1995" and "to Recall and/or Reconsider the Order of May 5, 1995" confirming the hospitalization of accused-respondent. Facts: Accused-respondent Roderick Odiamar was charged with rape upon the complaint of Cecille Buenafe. In a bid to secure temporary liberty, accused-respondent filed a motion praying that he be released on bail which petitioner opposed by presenting real, documentary and testimonial evidence. The lower court, however, granted the motion for bail in an order, on grounds that the evidence not being strong at the stage of the trial and thus the lower court is constrained to grant bail for the provisional liberty of the accused Roderick Odiamar in the amount of P30,000.00. Believing that accused-respondent was not entitled to bail as the evidence against him was strong, the prosecution filed the two abovementioned motions which the lower court disposed of for lack of merit. The above-cited orders prompted petitioner to file a petition before the Court of Appeals with prayer for temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction. The Court of Appeals denied the petition reasoning that it has examined in close and painstaking detail the records of this case, and find that the claim of the People that the respondent judge had over-stepped the exercise of his jurisdiction in issuing the questioned orders, lacks merit. We are not inclined to declare that there was grave abuse in respondent courts exercise of its discretion in allowing accused to obtain bail. There is grave abuse of discretion where the power is exercised in an arbitrary or despotic manner by reason of
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passion, prejudice, or personal hostility amounting to an evasion of positive duty or to a virtual refusal to perform the duty enjoined or to act at all in contemplation of law. We do not find this to be so in this case. Our ruling is based not only on the respect to be accorded the findings of facts of the trial court, which had the advantage (not available to Us) of having observed first-hand the quality of the autoptic proference and the documentary exhibits of the parties, as well as the demeanor of the witness on the stand, but is grounded on the liberal slant given by the law in favor of the accused. Differently stated, in the absence of clear, potent and compelling reasons, We are not prepared to supplant the exercise of the respondent courts discretion with that of Our own." Issue: Whether or not the Court of Appeals acted with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction in issuing the assailed decision and resolution despite a showing by the prosecution that there is strong evidence proving respondents guilt for the crime charged. Ruling: The decision dated August 1, 1997 and the resolution dated December 22, 1997 in CA G.R. No 42318 are REVERSED and the order dated March 24, 1995 in Criminal Case No. T-1417 is declared void for having been issued in grave abuse of discretion. The court a quo shall immediately issue a warrant for the rearrest of Roderick Odiamar if his bail bond has been approved and thereafter, proceed with dispatch in the disposition of said case. This resolution is immediately executory. It is thus indicative from the above observations that the lower court abused its discretion and showed manifest bias in favor of accused-respondent in determining which circumstances are to be considered in supporting its decision as to the guilt of accusedrespondent. In this regard, it must be remembered that the discretion to be exercised in granting or denying bail, according to Basco v. Rapatalo "is not absolute nor beyond control. It must be sound, and exercised within reasonable bounds. Judicial discretion, by its very nature, involves the exercise of the judges individual opinion. It is because of its very nature that the law has wisely provided that its exercise be guided by well-known rules which, while allowing the judge rational latitude for the operation of his own individual views, prevent them from getting out of control. An uncontrolled or uncontrollable discretion on the part of a judge is a misnomer. It is a fallacy. Lord Mansfield, speaking of the discretion to be exercised in granting or denying bail said: But discretion when applied to a court of justice, means sound discretion guided by law. It must be governed by rule, not by humor; it must not be arbitrary, vague and fanciful; but legal and regular." The fact that vital prosecution evidence and testimonies have been irregularly disregarded indicate that they have not been considered at all in arriving at the decision to grant bail. This irregularity is even more pronounced with the misapplication of the two criminal law doctrines cited to support the grant of the bail application. This Court cannot help but observe that the lower court exerted painstaking efforts to show that the evidence of guilt of accused-respondent is not strong by its non sequitur justifications, misleading or
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unsupported conclusions, irregular disregard of vital prosecution evidence and strained interpretation, if not misinterpretation, of criminal law doctrines. Aside from the apparent abuse of discretion in determining which circumstances and pieces of evidence are to be considered, the lower court also did not strictly comply with jurisprudential guidelines in the exercise of discretion. As reiterated in Carpio v. Maglalang, discretion is guided by: first, the applicable provisions of the Constitution and the statutes; second, by the rules which this Court may promulgate; and third, by those principles of equity and justice that are deemed to be part of the laws of the land. The present Constitution, as previously adverted to, provides that in crimes punishable by reclusion perpetua when evidence of guilt is strong, bail is not a matter of right. This Court has reiterated this mandate in Section 7, Rule 14 of the Rules of Court. Recently, this Court laid down the following rules in Basco v. Judge Rapatalo which outlined the duties of a judge in case an application for bail is filed: "(1) Notify the prosecutor of the hearing of the application for bail or require him to submit his recommendation; (2) Conduct a hearing of the application for bail regardless of whether or not the prosecution refuses to present evidence to show that the guilt of the accused is strong for the purpose of enabling the court to exercise its discretion; (3) Decide whether the evidence of guilt of the accused is strong based on the summary of evidence of the prosecution; (4) If the guilt of the accused is not strong, discharge the accused upon the approval of the bailbond. Otherwise, petition should be denied." Based on the above-cited procedure and requirements, after the hearing, the courts order granting or refusing bail must contain a summary of the evidence for the prosecution. A summary is defined as "a comprehensive and usually brief abstract or digest of a text or statement." There are two corollary reasons for the summary. First, the summary of the evidence in the order is an extension of the hearing proper, thus, a part of procedural due process wherein the evidence presented during the prior hearing is formally recognized as having been presented and most importantly, considered. The failure to include every piece of evidence in the summary presented by the prosecution in their favor during the prior hearing would be tantamount to not giving them the opportunity to be heard in said hearing, for the inference would be that they were not considered at all in weighing the evidence of guilt. Such would be a denial of due process, for due process means not only giving every contending party the opportunity to be heard but also for the Court to consider every piece of evidence presented in their favor. Second, the summary of the evidence in the order is the basis for the judges exercising his judicial discretion. Only after weighing the pieces of evidence as contained in the summary will the judge formulate his own conclusion as to whether the evidence of guilt against the accused is strong based on his discretion. Based on the above-stated reasons, the summary should necessarily be a complete compilation or restatement of all the pieces of evidence presented during the hearing proper. The lower court cannot exercise judicial discretion as to what pieces of evidence
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should be included in the summary. While conceding that some prosecution evidence were enumerated, said enumeration was incomplete. An incomplete enumeration or selective inclusion of pieces of evidence for the prosecution in the order cannot be considered a summary, for a summary is necessarily a reasonable recital of any evidence presented by the prosecution. A "summary" that is incomplete is not a summary at all. According to Borinaga v. Tamin, the absence of a summary in the order would make said order defective in form and substance. Corollarily, an order containing an incomplete "summary" would likewise be defective in form and substance which cannot be sustained or be given a semblance of validity. In Carpio v. Maglalang, said order was considered defective and voidable. As such, the order granting or denying the application for bail may be invalidated. G.R. Nos. 99289-90 January 27, 1993 Defensor-Santiago, petitioner vs Vasquez Filed directly with the Court in the present special civil action, is petitioners so -called "Motion to Restrain the Sandiganbayan from Enforcing its Hold Departure Order with Prayer for the Issuance of a Temporary Restraining Order and/or Preliminary Injunction, with Motion to Set Pending Incident for Hearing." Facts: An information was filed against petitioner with the Sandiganbayan for violation of the Anti Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. The order of arrest was issued with bail for release fixed at Php 15,000 so she filed a motion for acceptance of cash bail bond. On the same day the Sandiganbayan issued a resolution authorizing the petitioner to post cash bond which the later filed in the amount of Php15,000. Her arraignment was set, but petitioner asked for the cancellation of her bail bond and that she be allowed provisional release on recognizance. The Sandiganbayan deferred it. The Sandiganbayan issued a hold departure order against petitioner, by reason of the announcement she made that she would be leaving for the U.S. to accept a fellowship a Harvard. In the instant motion she submitted before the Supreme Court she argues that her right to travel is impaired. Issue: Whether or not the Sandiganbayan acquired jurisdiction over the person of herein petitioner and, correlatively, whether there was a valid posting of bail bond. Ruling: The motion for resolution DENIED for lack of merit. We find and so hold that petitioner is deemed to have voluntarily submitted herself to the jurisdiction of respondent court upon the filing of her aforequoted "Urgent Ex-parte Motion for Acceptance of Cash Bail Bond for and in behalf of Dr. Miriam Defensor-Santiago" wherein she expressly sought leave "that she be considered as having placed herself under the jurisdiction of (the Sandiganbayan) for purposes of the required trial and other proceedings," and categorically prayed "that the bail bond she is posting in the amount of P15,000.00 be duly accepted" and that by said motion "she be considered as having placed herself under the custody" of said court. Petitioner cannot now be heard to claim otherwise for, by her own
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representations, she is effectively estopped from asserting the contrary after she had earlier recognized the jurisdiction of the court and caused it to exercise that jurisdiction over the aforestated pleadings she filed therein. It cannot be denied that petitioner has posted a cash bail bond of P15,000.00 for her provisional release. This is further buttressed by the fact that petitioner thereafter also filed a motion for the cancellation of said cash bond and for the court to allow her provisional liberty upon the security of a recognizance. With the filing of the foregoing motions, petitioner should accordingly and necessarily admit her acquiescence to and acknowledgment of the propriety of the cash bond she posted, instead of adopting a stance which ignores the injunction for candor and sincerity in dealing with the courts of justice. Petitioner would also like to make capital of the fact that she did not personally appear before respondent court to file her cash bond, thereby rendering the same ineffectual. Suffice it to say that in this case, it was petitioner herself, in her motion for the acceptance of the cash bond, who requested respondent court to dispense with her personal appearance until she shall have recovered sufficiently from her vehicular accident. It is distressing that petitioner should now turn around and fault respondent court for taking a compassionate stand on the matter and accommodating her own request for acceptance of the cash bond posted in her absence. G.R. Nos. 115132-34 August 9, 1995 IMELDA R. MARCOS, petitioner, vs. THE HONORABLE SANDIGANBAYAN and the PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. This is a petition for certiorari to set aside as arbitrary and in grave abuse of discretion resolutions of the Sandiganbayan's First Division denying petitioner's motion for leave to travel abroad for medical treatment. Facts: This is a petition for certiorari to set aside as arbitrary and in grave abuse of discretion resolutions of the Sandiganbayan's First Division denying petitioner's motion for leave to travel abroad for medical treatment. The former first lady Imelda Marcos was found guilty by the First Division of the Sandiganbayan of violating 3 of the Anti Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. After conviction she filed a "Motion for Leave to Travel Abroad" to seek diagnostic tests and treatment by practitioners of oriental medicine in China allegedly because of "a serious and life threatening medical condition" requiring facilities not available in the Philippines that was denied. Then she again filed an "Urgent Ex-Parte Motion for Permission to Travel Abroad" to undergo diagnosis and treatment in China. This was supported by several medical reports that were prepared by her doctor Roberto Anastacio. Again another Motion to leave was filed by Mrs. Marcos to US and Europe for treatment of several Heart diseases alleging that the tests were not available here. The presiding justice, Garchitorena, contacted Dr. Gregorio B. Patacsil, Officer-inCharge of the Philippine Heart Center, and later wrote him a letter, asking for "expert opinion on coronary medicine". The court still found no merit to allow the petitioners motion to leave and denied all of the motions.
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Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration and a "Motion to Admit Clinical Summary and to Resolve Motion for Reconsideration." Attached was a recent medical report and letters of Vice President Joseph E. Estrada offering to be guarantor for the return of petitioner and those of twenty four members of the House of Representatives requesting the court to allow petitioner to travel abroad. This was also denied by the Court also stating their express disapproval of the involvement of the VP and the Cabinet members so as to influence the resolutions, decisions or orders or any judicial action of respondent court. Issue: Whether or not the Sandiganbayan erred in disallowing the Motion for Leave to Travel Abroad because it: (1) Disregarded the medical findings; (2) It motu propio contacted a third party asking the latter to give an opinion on petitioner's motion and medical findings; (3) Said that there was no necessity to get medical treatment abroad. Ruling: No. The contention of the petitioner that was invalid to contact a third party asking the latter to give an opinion on petitioner's motion and medical findings was erroneous. Respondent court had to seek expert opinion because petitioner's motion was based on the advice of her physician. The court could not be expected to just accept the opinion of petitioner's physician in resolving her request for permission to travel. What would be objectionable would be if respondent court obtained information without disclosing its source to the parties and used it in deciding a case against them. In disregarding the medical reports, the petitioner failed to prove the necessity for a trip abroad. It should be emphasized that considering the fact that she is facing charges before the courts in several cases, in two of which she was convicted although the decision is still pending reconsideration, petitioner did not have an absolute right to leave the country and the burden was on her to prove that because of danger to health if not to her life there was necessity to seek medical treatment in foreign countries. On the third issue, the Court ordered petitioner to undergo several tests which summarily states that the required medical treatment was available here in the Philippines and that the expertise and facilities here were more than adequate to cater to her medical treatment. The heart ailments of the petitioner were not as severe as that was reported by Dr. Anastacio. The petition is DISMISSED without prejudice to the filling of another motion for leave to travel abroad, should petitioner still desire, based on her heart condition. In such an event the determination of her medical condition should be made by joint panel of medical specialists recommended by both the accused and the prosecution.

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G.R. Nos. 138859-60 February 22, 2001 ALVAREZ ARO YUSOP, petitioner, vs. The Honorable SANDIGANBAYAN, respondent. Before the Supreme Court Third Divison is a Petition for Certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court, assailing two Orders of the Sandiganbayan, both dated February 15, 1999. The first Order rejected the attempt of petitioner to stop his arraignment in Criminal Case Nos. 24524-25, on the ground that he had been denied the right to a preliminary investigation. In the assailed second Order, the Sandiganbayan directed that a plea of not guilty be entered for all the accused, including herein petitioner. Facts: Acting on an Affidavit-Complaint filed by a certain Erlinda Fadri, the Office of the Ombudsman-Mindanao issued an Order dated September 19, 1995, naming the following as respondents: Benjamin Arao, Frederick Winters, Pelaez Pantaran, Eduardo Dablo, Efren Sissay and the city jail warden of Pagadian City. The Order also required respondents, within ten days from receipt thereof to submit their counter-affidavits and other pieces of controverting evidence. The Office of the Ombudsman for Mindanao issued a Resolution dated January 15, 1998, recommending the prosecution of the aforenamed respondents for violation of Article 269 of the Revised Penal Code and Section 3-a in relation to Section 3-e of Republic Act No. 3019 as amended. The name of Petitioner Alvarez A. Yusop was included as one of the persons to be prosecuted, although he was not one of the original respondents mentioned in the Order of September 19, 1995. Two Informations were filed with the Sandiganbayan. They were docketed as Criminal Case No. 24524 (violation of Section 3-a of RA 3019 - Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act), and Criminal Case No. 24525 (unlawful arrest under Article 269 of the Revised Penal Code). On April 16, 1998, an Order of Arrest was issued by the Sandiganbayan in Criminal Case No. 24524. Petitioner, however, posted a bail bond before the Regional Trial Court of Dipolog City on May 20 of the same year. On the same day, he filed a Motion To Remand Case To The Ombudsman - Mindanao For Preliminary Investigation. In a Resolution dated June 8, 1998, the Sandiganbayan denied the Motion of petitioner for his alleged failure to submit himself to the jurisdiction of the anti-graft court. On August 8, 1998, petitioner filed a Motion to Dismiss, grounded again on the lack of preliminary investigation. In an Order dated September 22, 1998, the Sandiganbayan resolved not to take action on the Motion, because petitioner had not yet submitted himself to its jurisdiction insofar as Criminal Case No. 24525 was concerned. On the scheduled arraignment on February 15, 1999, petitioner reiterated his claim that he had not been accorded preliminary investigation. In its two assailed Orders, the Sandiganbayan rejected his claim and proceeded with the arraignment.

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Issue:

Whether the Sandiganbayan, despite being informed of the lack of preliminary investigation with respect to petitioner, in Criminal Case No. 24524, committed grave abuse of discretion in proceeding with his arraignment. Ruling: The Petition is PARTIALLY GRANTED. The assailed Orders of the Sandiganbayan are REVERSED, and the Office of the Ombudsman is hereby ORDERED to conduct forthwith a preliminary investigation of the charge of violation of Section 3-a of RA 3019 against Petitioner Alvarez Aro Yusop. The trial on the merits of Criminal Case No. 24524 shall be SUSPENDED in regard to petitioner until the conclusion of the preliminary investigation. The Petition is meritorious in part. The right of a person to preliminary investigation is recognized by the law and is governed by the Rules of Court. However, the failure to accord this right does not ipso facto result in the dismissal of the information; the case is merely suspended, and the prosecutor directed to conduct the proper investigation.

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Rule 115: Rights of the Accused


G.R. Nos. 70746-47 September 1, 1992 Bienvenido O. Marcos, petitioner, vs. Hon. Fernando S. Ruiz, RTC Judge, 7th Judicial Region, Tagbilaran City, and The People of the Philippines, respondents. In this special civil action for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court, petitioner seeks to set aside, for being null and void, the Orders of respondent Judge of 8 April 1985 which considered the failure of petitioner and his counsel to appear on that date as a waiver of the right to present evidence, and of 29 April 1985 denying petitioners motion for the reconsideration of said order in Criminal Cases No. 3890 and No. 3892. Facts: On 2 August 1984, after conducting the appropriate preliminary investigation, Acting 2nd Assistant City Fiscal Lorenzo A. Lopena of the City of Tagbilaran filed with the Regional Trial Court of Bohol two (2) informations against petitioner herein for violating Batas Pambansa Blg. 22; said violations allegedly took place on 5 July 1983 in the City of Tagbilaran when the petitioner, knowing fully well that he did not have sufficient funds deposited with the Far Fast Bank and Trust Company (Cebu North Proclamation Area Branch), delivered to Fulgencia Oculam, in payment for assorted pieces of jewelry taken by petitioners wife Anacleta Marcos, two (2) checks drawn against said bank in the amount of P3,000.00 each. The informations were docketed as Criminal Cases No. 3890 and No. 3892 and were raffled to Branch II of said court. The petitioner posted a surety bond for his temporary liberty. The arraignment was set for 12 November 1984. The petitioner appeared on that date but asked for a resetting on the ground that his lawyer had just withdrawn and he had to look for another lawyer. The court granted his request and the arraignment was reset to 29 November 1984. It turned out, however, that petitioner settled his obligation with the offended party who, on 3 November 1984, executed an Affidavit of Desistance which she subscribed and swore to before Notary Public Paulino G. Clarin. Issues: The issues to be resolved in this petition are whether or not the respondent Court committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or absence of jurisdiction in: (1) forfeiting the bond posted by petitioners bondsmen; (2) receiving ex-parte the prosecutions evidence on April 8, 1985 for criminal case 3890; (3) declaring the Notice of Promulgation issued on 3 May 1985 valid ; (4) declaring the arraignment in Criminal case 3892 valid.

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Ruling: Judgement is hereby rendered SETTING ASIDE that portion of the Order of respondent Judge of 3 April 1985 forfeiting the bond posted by petitioners bondsmen and declaring Criminal Cases Nos. 3890 and 3892 submitted for decision; UPHOLDING the validity of the ex-parte reception of the prosecutions evidence on 8 April 1985 insofar as Criminal Case No. 3890 is concerned and DECLARING petitioner as having waived his right to cross-examine the witness presented by the prosecution in said case. SETTING ASIDE the Notice of Promulgation issued on 3 May 1985; and DECLARING that there was no valid arraignment in Criminal Case No. 3892, thereby DIRECTING the court below to arraign the petitioner in Criminal Case No. 3892, set the case for trial for the reception of the evidence for the prosecution, hold a joint hearing of both cases for the reception of the evidence for the petitioner and, in due course, render judgment thereon. This manifestation and withdrawal of the motion were made in the presence of the accused and his counsel, neither of them objected thereto for they knew too well that they had no legal basis therefor. The only flaw in this regard is the respondent Judges failure to explicitly make a ruling on the oral motion. He merely granted the motion impliedly by immediately directing the arraignment of the accused. He should have taken the trouble of making an unequivocal ruling thereon by simply stating: "Motion is granted; the motion to dismiss is considered withdrawn. All right, arraign the accused." The demands of orderly procedure require that a judge of a court of record must ensure that actions on motions must not be left to conjecture but must, in a manner of speaking, be done in black and white. A bail bond may be forfeited only in instances where the presence of the accused is specifically required by the court or the Rules of Court and, despite due notice to the bondsmen to produce him before the court on a given date, the accused fails to appear in person as so required. 21 There is no showing that the court had specifically required the bonding company to produce the body of the petitioner on 8 and 9 April 1985. Moreover, since Criminal Cases Nos. 3890 and 3892, which involve two (2) checks with a face value of P3,000.00 each, were merely for the violation of Batas Pambansa Blg. 22 which imposes a penalty of "imprisonment of not less than thirty (30) days but not more than one (1) year or by a fine of not less than but not more than double the amount of the check which fine shall in no case exceed Two Hundred Thousand Pesos, or both such fine and imprisonment at the discretion of the court," the presence of the accused at the hearing on 8 and 9 April 1985 was not indispensable. Almario vs. Court of Appeals, et al. GR No. 127772, March 22, 2001 Facts: Roberto P. Almario is one of the accused in a criminal case for estafa thru falsification of public document and for a second case of estafa, RCBC being the offended party in both cases. Informations were filed and pre-trial was held, which was then terminated. The cases were then scheduled for continuous trial. The scheduled hearings were however cancelled because the presiding judge was promoted to the CA and his successor was not immediately appointed. On june 21, 1995, hearing was postponed for
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lack of proof of notice to the accused and his counsel. July 17, 1995, hearing was again postponed upon the motion of the private prosecutor, july 24, 1995, hearing was again reset because of lack of proof of notice to the co-accused. September 8, 1995, RCBC failed to appear despite due notice and so the accuseds counsel filed a motion to dismiss for failure to prosecute and that the accuseds right to speedy trial is being violated. RTC granted the motion. The private prosecutor appealed and the CA reversed the decision of the RTC. Motion for reconsideration was denied and now the case is before the SC/ Issues: 1. Whether or not the accuseds right to speedy trial was violated. 2. Whether or not the accuseds right to double jeopardy was violated. Ruling: From the foregoing facts, the SC stated that the delay in the trial was due to circumstances beyond the control of the parties and the trial court. The postponements were based on reasonable and justifiable grounds. There was no unreasonable, vexatious and oppressive delay in the trial as there were no unjustified postponements which had prolonged the trial for unreasonable lengths of time. For double jeopardy, the fifth element was not satisfied being, that the defendant was acquitted or convicted, or the case was dismissed or otherwise terminated without the express consent of the accused. The trial courts initial order of dismissal was upon motion of the accuseds counsel and thus, with the consent of the accused. Double jeopardy did not attach. Wherefore, the decision of the CA is affirmed. The dismissal of the case against Almario is reconsidered and set aside.

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Rule 116: Arraignment and Plea


People vs. DY, et al. GR No. 115236-37, January 16, 2003 Facts: Bryan DY and Giovan Bernardino are the accused in a crime of rape and acts of lasciviousness. The RTC has found them guilty of the said crimes and the accused now file separate motions for reconsiderations for the decision of the SC in affirming the RTC decision. Bernardino raises the issue that the right to be arraigned is not among the rights that are susceptible to waiver or estoppels, thus the lack of arraignment cannot be deemed cured by their participation in the trial. Issue: Whether or not the issue raised be Bernardino is impressed with merit

Ruling: No, it is not. The SC ruled that the right to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation may not be waived. The defense may waive their right to enter a plea and let the court enter a plea of not guilty in their behalf. However, it is a different matter if the accused themselves refuse to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against them. The defense cannot hold hostage the court by their refusal to the reading of the complaint or information. Wherefore, motions for reconsiderations filed by the accused are dismissed with FINALITY. People vs. Hon. Mendoza GR No. 80845, March 14, 1994 Facts: The storeroom of the Bukidnon National School of Home Industries (BNSHI) was ransacked and the police found themselves at a loss as to the identity of the accused. However, Juan Magalop and 2 others were blamed for the robbery. At the arraignment, Magalop pleaded guilty. Instead of pronouncing judgment, the court conducted trial to which it thereafter acquitted Magalop despite his plea of guilty. The respondent judge ruled that it was not shown how Magalop and his companions did the crime and ruled that the plea of guilt was not intelligently done. The private prosecutor appealed the decision to this court. Issue: Whether or not the respondent judge acted accordingly.

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Ruling: There is no rule which provides that simply because the accused pleaded guilty to the charge that his conviction automatically follows. Additional evidence independent of the plea may be considered to convince the judge that it was intelligently made. The records show that the items stolen were found in the possession of one Babie Tan and yet, no efforts were made to bring him to court or to have him testify. As stated by the judge, the plea of Magalop was not intelligently given. There was nothing in the evidence that linked Magalop to the crime. Magalops right to be presumed innocent until the contrary is proved must prevail Wherefore, the acquittal of Magalop is sustained. People of the Philippines vs. Padernal GR. No. L-26734, September 5, 1987 Facts: Panfilo Padernal was charged with the crime of homicide in connection with the death of Brigido Rodila. Panfilo pleaded guilty during the arraignment however, upon motion of the accuseds counsel, evidence was presented to prove the mitigating circumstances of incomplete self defense and voluntary surrender. Due to lack of time in presenting the evidence, the judge ordered that a plea of not guilty be entered and that a trial on the merits would ensue on January 31, 1961. Trial on the merits was then conducted and the accused was acquitted due to the ground of reasonable doubt. The fiscal contended that since the accused pleaded guilty, no further evidence be needed and that the accused should just be given his penalty. Motion for reconsideration denied, the case is now before the SC. Issue: Whether or not the contention of the fiscal is correct. Ruling: Since the judge ordered that a plea of not guilty be entered in place of the plea of guilty and that there was a hearing on the merits thereafter, the acquittal of the defendant is proper since the court found insufficiency of evidence to prove the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt. The fact that the defense and prosecution prompted to adopt the testimonies adduced in the previous hearing does not mean that there was no trial in the merits. The decision of acquittal cannot be reviewed upon since the appeal is barred by the principle of double jeopardy. Wherefore, the appeal is dismissed for being barred by the principle of double jeopardy.

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Daan vs Sandiganbayan GR No. 163972-77, March 28, 2008 Facts: Joselito Daan and Benedicto Kuizon were charged in the SB for three counts of malversation of public funds and three counts of falsification of public document. Evidence shows that they falsified the time book by making it appear that workers collected their salaries when in truth they did not. The accused then offered to withdraw their plea of not guilty and substitute it with a plea of guilty provided that mitigating circumstances of plea of guilt and voluntary surrender be appreciated. If such proposal was denied, they offered to substitute their plea of guilty to the crime falsification of public document by a public officer with a plea of guilty, but to the lesser crime of falsification of public by a private individual. In the malversation cases, the accused offered to substitute their plea of not guilty with a plea of guilty but to the lesser crime of an accountable officer to render accounts. The prosecution found the proposal of the accused acceptable. The SB however denied the plea bargain of the accused and the latters subsequent motion for reconsideration. Petitioner then filed a case for certiorari and prohibition arguing that the SB acted with grave abuse of discretion in denying the plea bargain. Issue: Whether or not the petition is meritorious Ruling: Plea bargaining in criminal cases is a process whereby the accused and the prosecution work out a mutually satisfactory disposition of the case subject to court approval. It is usually involves the accused pleading guilty to a lesser offense in return for a lighter sentence for the graver charge and is usually done in the pre-trial proceedings but may also be done in the trial proper. The SB in the case at bar denied the plea bargain because the petitioner and prosecution failed to demonstrate that the proposal would redound to the benefit of the public. However, subsequent events and higher interests of justice and fair play dictate that the plea offer be accepted due to equity. The plea offered by the accused would be beneficial to both the courts and the public since the accused is willing to help in the speedy resolution of the case. Wherefore, the SB is ordered to grant the petitioners motion to plea bargain Gonzales III vs Office of the President GR No. 196231 September 4, 2012 Facts: A charge for grave misconduct (robbery, grave threats, robbery extortion and physical injuries) were filed before the PNP-NCR against Senior Inspector Rolando Mendoza and four others. Emilio Gonzales III was given all the relevant documents in relation to his position as the Deputy Ombudsman for the Military and Other Law Enforcement Offices (MOLEO) for appropriate administrative adjudication. Upon the recommendation of Gonzales III, P/S Insp. Mendoza and his fellow police officers were
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found guilty of grave misconduct and were dismissed from service. Motions for reconsiderations were filed and forwarded to the office of the ombudsman, however, the final decision of the ombudsman were not immediately given which prompted Rolando Mendoza to hijack the bus full of foreign tourists in a desperate attempt to be reinstated. Mendoza demanded that the ombudsman give their final decision during the hostage situation which was not given. Thereafter, the Incident Investigation and Review Committee was created. The IIRC found that Gonzales III let the motion for reconsideration languish for nine months without any justification and ordered that Gonzales be dismissed. The case was brought before the President who ruled in favor of the IIRC. Gonzales III was dismissed for gross neglect of duty and grave misconduct constituting betrayal of public trust. Issue: Whether or not the dismissal of Gonzales III was proper

Ruling: The president has the power to remove an ombudsman provided it is based on valid legal grounds and supported by evidence. However, the act of dismissing Gonzales III was not in accordance with law. The fact that Gonzales III acted on the motion for reconsideration only after nine months does not necessarily constitute acts that betray the public trust. The IIRC contend that if Gonzales III acted on the motion for reconsideration of Rolando Mendoza upon demand during the hostage taking, and the event could have ended peacefully is without merit. The hostage taking incident was the result of a confluence of several unfortunate events including system failure of government response. The act alone of Gonzales III did not set the hostage taking in motion and blame cannot be put on his shoulders alone. The act of dismissing Gonzales III based on assumptions is not in accordance with the law and the constitution Plea bargaining is allowable when the prosecution does not have sufficient evidence to establish the guilt of the accused for the crime charged. However, when the case is already strong against the accused, the act of even considering a plea bargain warrants the disciplining authority to look into the why and wherefores of the prosecutions decisions. Wherefore, Gonzales III is reinstated. The case against Special Prosecutor Barreras-Sulit is to be continued. Barreras-Sulit vs Office of the President GR No. 196232, September 4, 2012 Facts: Major General Carlos F. Garcia along with his wife and 3 sons were charged with plunder and money laundering before the SB. Special prosecutor Wendell Barreras-Sulit sought the approval of a plea bargaining agreement. The SB approved of their plea bargaining agreement. The House of Representatives Committee on Justice then conducted public hearing regarding the plea bargain and passed Committee Resolution No. 3 recommending the President to dismiss Barreras-Sulit for having committed acts that constitute betrayal of public trust due to the belief of the committee that the plea bargain
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would only result to the Major Generals light punishment regarding the case against them. There was already a strong case against the Major General and the plea bargain would be grossly disadvantageous to the Government. Issue: Whether or not the committee resolution of the committee on justice is valid

Ruling: The president has the power to remove an ombudsman provided it is based on valid legal grounds and supported by evidence. However, the act of dismissing Gonzales III was not in accordance with law. The fact that Gonzales III acted on the motion for reconsideration only after nine months does not necessarily constitute acts that betray the public trust. The IIRC contend that if Gonzales III acted on the motion for reconsideration of Rolando Mendoza upon demand during the hostage taking, and the event could have ended peacefully is without merit. The hostage taking incident was the result of a confluence of several unfortunate events including system failure of government response. The act alone of Gonzales III did not set the hostage taking in motion and blame cannot be put on his shoulders alone. The act of dismissing Gonzales III based on assumptions is not in accordance with the law and the constitution Plea bargaining is allowable when the prosecution does not have sufficient evidence to establish the guilt of the accused for the crime charged. However, when the case is already strong against the accused, the act of even considering a plea bargain warrants the disciplining authority to look into the why and wherefores of the prosecutions decisions. Wherefore, Gonzales III is reinstated. The case against Special Prosecutor Barreras-Sulit is to be continued.

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Rule 117: Motion to Quash


Los Banos vs. Pedro GR No. 173588 Facts: Joel Pedro was found violating the election gun ban a day before the May 14, 2001 elections. He and his 2 companions were stopped in a checkpoint in Boac, Marinduque and were found to be carrying with them a Revolver 357 Magnum and over 100 bullets without the required written authorization coming from the COMELEC. The election officer in Boac then filed a criminal complaint against Pedro. After the inquest, the prosecutor filed an information against Pedro. Pedro filed a motion for Preliminary Investigation which was granted but did not materialize. Pedro then filed a motion to quash on the ground that the facts do not constitute an offense and attached a COMELEC certification stating that he was exempted from the gun ban. RTC quashed the information. Private prosecutor Los Banos moved to reopen the case on the ground that the quashing of the information was not done with due process and that the COMELEC certificate shown by Pedro was forged. RTC granted the motion. Pedro appealed to the CA citing Sec. 8 of Rule 117 arguing that the case cannot reopened after 1 year. CA denied his appeal but upon Pedros motion for reconsideration, he presented evidence showing that 1 year had indeed truly lapsed. The CA then reversed itself. Los Banos now appeals the decision of the CA. Issue: Whether or not Sec. 8 of Rule 117 is applicable to the case at bar. Ruling: Sec. 8 of Rule 117 refers to provisional dismissal, which is quite different from quashal dismissal. The differences are as follows: First, a motion to quash is invariably filed by the accused to question the efficacy of the complaint or information filed against him or her (Sections 1 and 2, Rule 117); in contrast, a case may be provisionally dismissed at the instance of either the prosecution or the accused, or both, subject to the conditions enumerated under Section 8, Rule 117. Second, the form and content of a motion to quash are as stated under Section 2 of Rule 117; these requirements do not apply to a provisional dismissal. Third, a motion to quash assails the validity of the criminal complaint or the criminal information for defects or defenses apparent on face of the information; a provisional dismissal may be grounded on reasons other than the defects found in the information. Fourth, a motion to quash is allowed before the arraignment (Section 1, Rule 117); there may be a provisional dismissal of the case even when the trial proper of the case is already underway provided that the required consents are present. Fifth, a provisional dismissal is, by its own terms, impermanent until the time-bar applies, at which time it becomes a permanent dismissal. In contrast, an information that is quashed stays quashed until revived; the grant of a motion to quash does not per se carry any connotation of impermanence, and becomes so only as provided by law or by the Rules.
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In re-filing the case, what is important is the question of whether the action can still be brought, i.e., whether the prescription of action or of the offense has set in. In a provisional dismissal, there can be no re-filing after the time-bar, and prescription is not an immediate consideration. If the problem relates to an intrinsic or extrinsic deficiency of the complaint or information, the remedy is a motion to quash. All other dismissal of the complaint or information, before arraignment and under the circumstances in Sec. 8 are provisional dismissal. Looking back at Pedros motion to quash, the motion was grounded on the COMELEC certificate which cannot support such motion. The motion to quash was invalid from the very start. A valid information still stands. Wherefore, the case is reopened. Alawiya, et al. vs CA, et al. GR No. 164170, April 16, 2009 Facts: Petitioners executed sworn statements accusing the private respondents herein, who are all police officers, of kidnapping with ransom. The petitioners allege that in 10:00 am, while driving along United Nations Avenue, a car behind them bumped their vehicle in the back. When they went to assess the damage, armed men came out of the car behind them and ordered them to get in the car. They were then brought to an office where the kidnappers demanded P 10M and two cars. After haggling, the price was lowered to P700k and two cars in exchange for their freedom. The money and the vehicles were then delivered on the same day and they were released after handing the kidnappers the deed of sale and registration papers of the vehicles. State Prosecutor Emmanuel Velasco conducted the preliminary investigation and issued an information for kidnapping for ransom. The respondents filed a petition for review of the resolution of Velasco. The accused also filed a motion to quash on the ground that the officer who filed the information had no authority to do so. The trial court denied the motion to quash on the ground that the accused is not entitled to any relief (motion to quash) as he is still at large and that the state prosecutor has authority in filing the information. However, then secretary of justice Hernando B. Perez reversed the ruling of the state prosecutor and ordered the withdrawal of the information. The petitioners filed a motion for reconsideration which was denied by Perez. CA also affirmed the decision of Perez. Issue: Whether or not the accused is entitled to the motion to quash as he is still at large Ruling: There is nothing in the rules governing a motion to quash which requires that the accused should be under the custody of the law prior to the filing of a motion to quash on the ground that the officer had no authority to do so. Custody of the law is not required for the adjudication of reliefs other than an application for bail. However, while the accused are not yet under the custody of the law, any question on the jurisdiction over the person of the accused is deemed waived by the accused when he files any pleading seeking an
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affirmative relief, except in cases when the accused invokes the special jurisdiction of the court by impugning such jurisdiction over his person. Wherefore, the case is remanded to the RTC. Loney vs. People GR No. 152644, February 10, 2006 Facts: Petitioners are the president and chief executive officer, senior manager and resident manager for mining operations, respectively, of Marcopper Mining Corporation engaged in mining in Marinduque. Marcopper had been storing tailings from its operations in a pit in Mt. Tapian, Marinduque. At the base of the pit ran a drainage tunnel leading to 2 rivers. Marcopper placed a concrete plug at the tunnels end. Sometime in March 1994, tailings gushed out of the tunnel and went into the rivers. The Dept of Justice then separately charged the petitioners with violations of the Water Code of the Philippines, National Pollution Control Decree, the RPC and the Philippine Mining act. The petitioners moved for the quashal of the information on the ground that the indormations were duplicitous. The MTC made a consolidated order stating that the violation of the Philippine Mining Act and violation of Art. 365 of the RPC be maintained and that all other charges are quashed. Petitioners filed a petition for certiorari with RTC and an ordinary appeal. RTC denied the petition for certiorari but granted the appeal and ruled that the quashing of the information was not proper. They then appealed to the CA which affirmed the RTCs ruling. Issue: Whether or not the motion to quash is duplicitous. Ruling: There is duplicity or multiplicity of charges when a single information charges more than one offense. The SC has ruled that a single act or incident might offend against two or more entirely distinct and unrelated provisions of law thus justifying the prosecution of the accused for more than one offense. The only limit to this rule is the constitutional prohibition against double jeopardy. The filing of multiple charges against the petitioners, although based on the same incident, is inconsistent with the settled doctrine. Wherefore, CA ruling is affirmed. People vs Nitafan, et al. GR No. 107964-66, February 1, 1999 Facts: Three criminal informations for violation of Sec. 4 of Central Bank Circular No. 960 in relation to Sec. 34 of RA 265 were filed against Imelda Marcos in branch 158 of the RTC in pasig. After arraignment where Imelda pleaded not guilty, the Panel of Prosecutors from the DOJ and the SolGen filed motions for consolidation of three other informations pending before branch 26 of Manila stating that these acts relate to a series of transactions whose objective was to hide the ill-gotten wealth of the Marcoses. The cases were then re-raffled
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and re-assigned. Three cases were raffled to Judge Nitafan. Without any action from Imelda and her counsel, Judge Nitafan required the petitioners to show cause why one of the cases shiuld not be dismissed on the ground that it violates the right against ex post facto law since the date of violation was prior to the date the publication of the circular was completed. On the same day, Judge Nitafan issued another order requiring the prosecution to show cause why the other two cases do not constitute a violation of the right of the accused to double jeopardy since all the cases constitute one continuous crime. Judge Nitafan dismissed the cases thereafter. The prosecution filed motions for reconsideration which were all denied. The case is now before the SC by way of a petition for certiorari. Issue: Whether or not a judge may motu proprio dismiss a case without any motion from the accused on the ground that the accuseds right against ex post facto law and double jeopardy are violated Ruling: It is clear from section1 of rule 117 that the right to file a motion to quash belongs only to the accused. There is nothing in the rules which authorizes the judge to initiate a motion to quash if no motion was filed by the accused. If the judge initiates the motion to quash, he is not only pre-judging the case but also takes the side of the accused. This would be clear violation to the right to a hearing before an independent and impartial tribunal. The motion must be signed by the accused and his counsel which are not complied with at the case at bar. Also, all the elements for double jeopardy have not been satisfied. Wherefore, the orders of the judge dismissing the case are reversed and set aside.

G.R. No. 164682 September 14, 2011 JOEL GALZOTE y SORIAGA, petitioner, vs. JONATHAN BRIONES and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Facts: Joel Galzote was charged with robbery in an uninhabited place before the Metropolitan Trial court, Branch 1 Manila. Joel moved to quash the information filed against him by alleging that it was patently irregular and fatally flawed in form and substance. The Metropolitan Trial court denied his motion to quash and his motion for reconsideration met the same fate. So via a petition for certiorari he appealed to the Regional trial court alleging that the Metropolitan Trial Court committed grave abuse of discretion in not granting his motion to quash. Respondent Jonathan Briones moved to dismiss the petition for certiorari alleging that (a) the petitioner failed to prosecute the petition for an unreasonably long period of time; (b) a petition for certiorari is not the proper remedy to address the denial of a motion to quash; and (c) the MeTC did not abuse its discretion in denying the petitioners motion to quash. The RTC granted the motion of the respondent and denied the motion for reconsideration of the petitioner. The Petitioner filed again a petition for certioriari before the Court of Appeals but was dismissed.
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Issue:

Whether or not the proper remedy from the denial of a motion to quash is via a special civil action for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court. Ruling: As a rule, the denial of a motion to quash is an interlocutory order and is not appealable; an appeal from an interlocutory order is not allowed under Section 1(b), Rule 41 of the Rules of Court. Neither can it be a proper subject of a petition for certiorari which can be used only in the absence of an appeal or any other adequate, plain and speedy remedy. The plain and speedy remedy upon denial of an interlocutory order is to proceed to trial. We find no compelling reason to justify a resort to a petition for certiorari against the orders of the MeTC as the petitioner failed to show that the factual circumstances of his case fall under any of the above exceptional circumstances. The MeTC in fact did not commit any grave abuse of discretion as its denial of the motion to quash was consistent with the existing rules and applicable jurisprudence. The ground used by the petitioner in his motion to quash (i.e., that his co-conspirator had been convicted of an offense lesser than the crime of robbery) is not among the exclusive grounds enumerated under Section 3, Rule 117 of the 2000 Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure that warrant the quashal of a criminal information. This ground, too, is an extraneous matter that has no bearing and is irrelevant to the validity of the criminal information filed against the accused; the designated purpose of a motion to quash is to assail the validity of the criminal information (or criminal complaint) for defects or defenses apparent on the face of the information. A facial examination of the criminal information against the petitioner shows it to be valid and regular on its face considering its conformity with the guidelines under Section 6, Rule 110 of the 2000 Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure. This section provides: SEC. 6. Sufficiency of complaint or information. - A complaint or information is sufficient if it states the name of the accused; the designation of the offense given by the statute; the acts or omissions complained of as constituting the offense; the name of the offended party; the approximate date of the commission of the offense; and the place where the offense was committed. When an offense is committed by more than one person, all of them shall be included in the complaint or information. Under the circumstances, the criminal information is sufficient in form and substance for it states: (a) the name of the petitioner as the accused; (b) the offense of robbery as the designated offense committed; (c) the manner on how the offense of robbery was committed and the petitioners participation were alleged with particularity; and (d) the date and the place of the commission of the robbery were also stated therein. Thus, as the RTC correctly ruled, the petitioner can be properly tried under the allegations of the information.

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G.R. No. 172716 November 17, 2010 JASON IVLER y AGUILAR, petitioner, vs. HON. MARIA ROWENA MODESTO-SAN PEDRO, Judge of the Metropolitan Trial Court, Branch 71, Pasig City, and EVANGELINE PONCE, respondents. Facts: Jason Ivler was in a vehicular accident that caused physical injuries to Evangeline Ponce, the death of Nestor Ponce and damages to the spouses Ponces vehicle. He was charged before the Metropolitan Trial Court of Pasig City, Branch 71 with two separate offenses namely reckless imprudence resulting in slight physical injuries and reckless imprudence resulting in homicide and damage to property. Ivler pleaded guilty to the charge of reckless imprudence resulting to slight physical injuries and was meted out the penalty of public censure. Invoking this conviction, petitioner moved to quash the Information on reckless imprudence resulting to homicide and damage to property for placing him in jeopardy of second punishment for the same offense of reckless imprudence. The Metropolitan Trial Court refused quashal, finding no identity of offenses in the two cases. So the Ivler elevated the matter to the Regional trial court in a petition for certiorari. The RTC dismissed the petition, so Ivler sought for a reconsideration but such proved unavailing. Hence this petition. Issue: Whether or not the previous conviction of Ivler for reckless imprudence resulting in slight physical injuries is a bar to a second prosecution for reckless imprudence resulting in homicide and damage to property on the grounds of double jeopardy. Ruling: Yes. Reckless Imprudence is a single crime, its consequences on persons and property are material only to determine the penalty. The two charges against petitioner, arising from the same facts, were prosecuted under the same provision of the Revised Penal Code, as amended, namely, Article 365 defining and penalizing quasi-offenses. The doctrine that reckless imprudence under Article 365 is a single quasi-offense by itself and not merely a means to commit other crimes such that conviction or acquittal of such quasioffense bars subsequent prosecution for the same quasi-offense, regardless of its various resulting acts, undergirded this Courts unbroken chain of jurisprudence on double jeopardy. Reason and precedent both coincide in that once convicted or acquitted of a specific act of reckless imprudence, the accused may not be prosecuted again for that same act. For the essence of the quasi offense of criminal negligence under Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code lies in the execution of an imprudent or negligent act that, if intentionally done, would be punishable as a felony. The law penalizes thus the negligent or careless act, not the result thereof. The gravity of the consequence is only taken into account to determine the penalty, it does not qualify the substance of the offense. And, as the careless act is single, whether the injurious result should affect one person or several persons, the offense (criminal negligence) remains one and the same, and cannot be split into different crimes and prosecutions.

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G.R. No. 143591 November 23, 2007 TEODORO C. BORLONGAN, JR., CORAZON M. BEJASA, ARTURO E. MANUEL, JR., ERIC L. LEE, P. SIERVO H. DIZON, BENJAMIN DE LEON, DELFIN C. GONZALEZ, JR., and BEN YU LIM, JR., petitioners, vs. MAGDALENO M. PEA and HON. MANUEL Q. LIMSIACO, JR., as Judge Designate of the Municipal Trial Court in Cities, Bago City, respondents. Facts: This case stemmed from an Information filed by a Government Prosecutor concluding that the petitioners were probably guilty of four counts of the crime of Introducing Falsified Documents penalized by the second paragraph of Article 172 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC). Respondents move to quash the four (4) Information filed on the ground, among others, that "they were denied due process because of the non-observance of the proper procedure on preliminary investigation prescribed in the Rules of Court. Specifically, they claimed that they were not afforded the right to submit their counter-affidavit. They then argued that since no such counter-affidavit and supporting documents were submitted by the petitioners, the trial judge merely relied on the complaint-affidavit and attachments of the respondent in issuing the warrants of arrest, also in contravention of the Rules. Petitioners further prayed that the information be quashed for lack of probable cause. Lastly, petitioners posited that the criminal case should have been suspended on the ground that the issue being threshed out in the civil case is a prejudicial question." The court denied the omnibus motion primarily on the ground that preliminary investigation was not available in the instant case which fell within the jurisdiction of the MTCC. Issues: 1. Whether or not the court is correct in denying the Motion to Quash filed by the respondents. 2. Whether or not the information/warrants of arrest should be quashed on the grounds that: 1) petitioners were not afforded their right to preliminary investigation and to submit a counter-affidavit; 2) there was no probable cause in filing the information Ruling: 1. Yes. The grounds for motion to quash are specified in Rule 117, Sec. 3, and no other grounds can be invoked except those mentioned. 2. Yes. Preliminary investigation was not mandatory, and the submission of counter-affidavit was not necessary. However, the Information should not have been filed and the warrants of arrest should not have been issued, because of lack of probable cause. It must be emphasized that the affidavit of the complainant, or any of his witnesses, shall allege facts within their (affiants) personal knowledge. The allegation of the respondent that the signatures of Ponce, Abad, Ong and Montilla were falsified does not qualify as personal knowledge. He did not claim that he was familiar with the signatures of the signatories. He simply made a bare assertion that the signatories were mere
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dummies of ISCI and they were not in fact officers, stockholders or representatives of the corporation. At the very least, the affidavit was based on respondents personal belief and not personal knowledge. G.R. No. 143591 November 23, 2007 TEODORO C. BORLONGAN, JR., CORAZON M. BEJASA, ARTURO E. MANUEL, JR., ERIC L. LEE, P. SIERVO H. DIZON, BENJAMIN DE LEON, DELFIN C. GONZALEZ, JR., and BEN YU LIM, JR., petitioners, vs. MAGDALENO M. PEA and HON. MANUEL Q. LIMSIACO, JR., as Judge Designate of the Municipal Trial Court in Cities, Bago City, respondents. Facts: On June 22, 2001, private respondent was charged with violation of the "Social Security Act,". That on or about February 1990 and up to the present, in the City of Naga, Philippines, within the functional jurisdiction of SSS Naga Branch and the territorial jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above named accused, while being the proprietor of Saballegue Printing Press, did then and there willfully, unlawfully, and criminally refuse and fail and continuously refuse and fail to remit the premiums due for his employee to the SSS in the amount of (P6,533.00), representing SSS and EC premiums for the period from January 1990 to December 1999 (n.i.), and the 3% penalty per month for late remittance in the amount of ELEVEN THOUSAND ONE HUNDRED FORTY-THREE PESOS and 28/100 (P11,143.28) computed as of 15 March 2000, despite lawful demands by letter in violation of the above-cited provisions of the law, to the damage and prejudice of the SSS and the public in general. The case was raffled to Branch 19 of the Regional Trial Court of Naga City. Accused Serafin Saballegue pleaded not guilty to the charge and the case was set for pre-trial.5 Three days thereafter, the accused filed a motion to dismiss6 on the ground that the information was filed without the prior written authority or approval of the city prosecutor as required under Section 4, Rule 112 of the Revised Rules of Court. After considering the arguments raised, the trial court granted the motion to dismiss in its first questioned Order dated February 26, 2002, to wit: After considering the respective arguments raised by the parties, the Court believes and so resolves that the Information has not been filed in accordance with Section 4, par. 3 of Rule 112 of the 2000 Rules on Criminal ProcedureRule 112, Section 4 x x x x x x No complaint or information may be filed or dismissed by an investigating prosecutor without the prior written authority or approval of the provincial or city prosecutor or chief state prosecutor or the Ombudsman or his deputy. Expresio unius est exclusio alterius. The Information will readily show that it has not complied with this rule as it has not been approved by the City Prosecutor. This Court holds that the defendants plea to the Information is not a waiver to file a motion to dismiss or to quash on the ground of lack of jurisdiction. By express provision of the rules and by a long line of decisions, questions of want of jurisdiction may be raised at any stage of the proceedings. Issue: Whether the approval of the city or provincial prosecutor is no longer required.
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Ruling: No. Under Presidential Decree No. 1275. The Regional State Prosecutor is clearly vested only with the power of administrative supervision. As administrative supervisor, he has no power to direct the city and provincial prosecutors to inhibit from handling certain cases. At most, he can request for their inhibition. Hence, the said directive of the regional state prosecutor to the city and provincial prosecutors is questionable to say the least. Petitioner argues that the word "may" is permissive. Hence, there are cases when prior written approval is not required, and this is one such instance. This is too simplistic an interpretation. Whether the word "may" is mandatory or directory depends on the context of its use. We agree with the OSG that the use of the permissive word "may" should be read together with the other provisions in the same section of the Rule. The paragraph immediately preceding the quoted provision shows that the word "may" is mandatory. It states: Sec. 4, Rule 112. x x x Within five (5) days from his resolution, he (investigating prosecutor) shall forward the record of the case to the provincial or city prosecutor or chief state prosecutor, or to the Ombudsman or his deputy in cases of offenses cognizable by the Sandiganbayan in the exercise of its original jurisdiction. They shall act on the resolution within ten (10) days from their receipt thereof and shall immediately inform the parties of such action. (emphasis supplied) G.R. No. 139615 May 28, 2004 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, appellee, vs. AMADEO TIRA and CONNIE TIRA, appellants. Facts: This is an appeal of the Decision of the Regional Trial Court finding appellants Amadeo Tira and Connie Tira guilty beyond reasonable doubt of violating Section 16, in relation to Section 20, Article III of Republic Act No. 6425, known as the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972, as amended by Rep. Act No. 7659, sentencing each of them to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua and ordering each of them to pay a fine of P1,000.000. After her arrest, Connie filed a motion to quash search warrant, alleging that the police officers who applied for the said warrant did not have any personal knowledge of the reported illegal activities. She contended that the same was issued in violation of Section 4, Rule 126 of the Rules of Court, as the judge issued the search warrant without conducting searching questions and answers, and without attaching the records of the proceedings. Moreover, the search warrant issued was in the nature of a general warrant, to justify the fishing expedition conducted on the premises but the trial court found Connie Tira guilty. Hence, this appeal. Issue: Whether or not the information is defective.

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Ruling: The Information is defective because it charges two crimes. The appellants should have filed a motion to quash the Information under Section 3, Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Court before their arraignment. They failed to do so. Hence, under Rule 120, Section 3 of the said rule, the appellants may be convicted of the crimes charged. The said Rule provides: SEC. 3. Judgment for two or more offenses. - When two or more offenses are charged in a single complaint or information but the accused fails to object to it before trial, the court may convict him of as many offenses as are charged and proved, and impose on him the penalty for each offense, setting out separately the findings of fact and law in each offense.

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RULE 118: Pre Trial


PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. ANTONIO MAGAT G.R. No. 130026 May 31, 2000 Facts: The petitioner filed two (2) Informations charging accused-appellant with rape. It was alleged in the complaint that the accused had the first sexual intercourse with Fideli Magat during her 17th birthday by means of threat and violence. Thereafter, crime was again happened after two (2) years. Upon arraignment, accused-appellant pleaded guilty but bargained for a lesser penalty for each case. Complainant's mother, Ofelia Magat, and the public prosecutor agreed with the plea bargain. Consequently, the trial court issued, on that same day, an Order. After three months, the cases were revived at the instance of the complainant on the ground that the penalty imposed was "too light."4 As a consequence, accused-appellant was re-arraigned on both Informations on April 15, 1997 where he entered a plea of not guilty. On July 3, 1997 accused-appellant entered anew a plea of guilty.6 The court read to him the Informations in English and Tagalog and repeatedly asked whether he understood his change of plea and propounded questions as to his understanding of the consequences of his plea. Convinced of accused-appellant's voluntariness of his plea of guilty, the court required the taking of complainant's testimony. The accused-appellant did not present any evidence. The trial court rendered judgment finding the accused guilty. Hence, this automatic review. Issue: 1. Whether or not the trial court erred in re-arraigning and proceeding into trial despite the fact that he was already convicted per Order of the trial court based on his plea of guilt; 2. Whether or not the the re-arraignment and trial on the same information violated his right against double jeopardy.

Ruling: The court held that accused-appellant did not plead to a lesser offense but pleaded guilty to the rape charges and only bargained for a lesser penalty. In short, he did not plea bargain but made conditions on the penalty to be imposed. This is erroneous because by pleading guilty to the offense charged, accused-appellant should be sentenced to the penalty to which he pleaded. It is the essence of a plea of guilty that the accused admits absolutely and unconditionally his guilt and responsibility for the offense imputed to him. Hence, an accused may not foist a conditional plea of guilty on the court by admitting his guilt provided that a certain penalty will be meted unto him. Accused-appellant's plea of guilty is undoubtedly a conditional plea. Hence, the trial court should have vacated such a plea and entered a plea of not guilty for a conditional plea of guilty, or one subject to the proviso that a certain penalty be imposed upon him, is
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equivalent to a plea of not guilty and would, therefore, require a full-blown trial before judgment may be rendered. In effect, the judgment rendered by the trial court which was based on a void plea bargaining is also void abinitio and cannot be considered to have attained finality for the simple reason that a void judgment has no legality from its inception. Thus, since the judgment of conviction rendered against accused-appellant is void, double jeopardy will not lie. Nonetheless, whatever procedural infirmity in the arraignment of the accusedappellant was rectified when he was re-arraigned and entered a new plea. Accusedappellant did not question the procedural errors in the first arraignment and having failed to do so, he is deemed to have abandoned his right to question the same and waived the errors in procedure. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. CRISTINA M HERNANDEZ G.R. No. 108028 July 30, 1996 Facts: Accused-appellant Cristina Hernandez was charged with the crime of illegal recruitment committed in large scale in violating of Article 38 (a) and (b) in relation to Article 13 (b) and (c) of the New Labor Code. Upon arraignment, appellant pleaded not guilty and trial on the merits ensued. After careful calibration of the evidence presented by the prosecution and the defense, the court a quorendered a decision holding that the defense of "denial" interposed by the accused could not prevail over the positive and clear testimonies of the prosecution witnesses which had established the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt. Appellant comes to this Court for the reversal of the judgment of conviction During the trial, it is evident that the prosecution and the defense counsel stipulated on two things: that ". . . from the record of the POEA, . . . accused Cristina Hernandez, Phil. etc. Ass. . . . is neither licensed nor authorized by that office to recruit workers for overseas abroad and that if the duly authorized representative from the POEA Administration (sic) is to take the witness stand, he will confirm to this fact . . . . Appellant further contends that granting arguendo that defense counsel had in fact agreed to the above stipulation of facts, the same is null and void for being contrary to the well-established rule that a stipulation of facts is not allowed in criminal cases. Issue: Whether or not the stipulation of facts is now allowed in criminal cases

Ruling: Under the old rule, the rule prohibiting the stipulation of facts in criminal cases is grounded on the fundamental right of the accused to be presumed innocent until proven guilty, and corollary duty of the prosecution to prove the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt. It is therefore advanced that the prosecution being duty-bound to prove all the elements of the crime, may not be relieve of this obligation by the mere expedient of
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stipulating with defense counsel on a matter constitutive of an essential elements of the crime charged. However, in the light of recent changes in our rules on criminal procedure, particularly the pre-trial provisions found in Rule 118, the prohibition against a stipulation of facts in criminal cases no longer holds true. Rule 118 provides the following: Sec. 1. Pre-trial; when proper To expedite trial, where the accused and counsel agree, the court shall conduct a pre-trial conference on the matters enunciated in Section 2 hereof, without impairing the rights of the accused. Sec. 2. Pre-trial conference; subjects . . . The pre-trial conference shall consider the following: (a) Plea bargaining; (b) Stipulation of facts; By virtue of the foregoing rule, a stipulation facts in criminal cases is now expressly sanctioned by law. In further pursuit of the objective of expediting trial by dispensing with the presentation of evidence on matters that the accused is willing to admit, a stipulation of fact should be allowed not only during pre-trial but also and with more reason, during trial proper itself. Parenthetically, although not expressly sanctioned under the old rules of court, a stipulation of facts by the parties in criminal cases has long been allowed and recognized as declarations constituting judicial admissions, hence, binding upon the parties. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. PASCUAL BALBARONA G. R. No. 146854 April 28, 2004 Facts: An Information for rape was filed against Pascual Balbarona of raping his fifteen (15) years old minor daughter against her will. During the trial, Appellant pleaded not guilty to the accusation. The prosecution and defense subsequently entered into a stipulation of facts to prove the qualifying circumstances of rape where it was admitted that the victim, Odette M. Balbarona, was appellants daughter and was fifteen at the time of the alleged rape; and that appellant was then living with the victim and his two other daughters. Issue: Whether or not the stipulation of facts made by the prosecution and defense is valid.

Ruling: Much reliance is had on the stipulation of facts embodied in the trial courts June 22, 2000 Pre-trial Order whereby appellant admitted to the victim being his daughter and her being fifteen (15) years old at the time of the rape incident, The court rejected stipulation of facts as a specie of evidence to prove the qualifying circumstances of rape.
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The court held that neither can a stipulation of the parties with respect to the victims age be considered sufficient proof of minority. Circumstances that qualify a crime and increase its penalty to death cannot be the subject of stipulation. An accused cannot be condemned to suffer the extreme penalty of death on the basis of stipulations or his own admissions. This strict rule is warranted by the seriousness of the penalty of death. THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. HON. JUDGE PATERNO V. TAC-AN G.R. No. 148000 February 27, 2003 Facts: On February 22, 2000, an Information was filed by the Office of the City Prosecutor of Batangas City against Mario N. Austria for falsification of public official document. The trial court set the arraignment of the accused and the initial pre-trial on August 1, 2000. Apparently, out of the eleven witnesses listed in the Information, only the first three witnesses were notified of said arraignment and pre-trial. When the case was called for pre-trial, the trial court discovered that none of the three witnesses who were allegedly earlier notified by the court was in attendance. On motion of the accused, the trial court issued an order dismissing the case for failure of said witnesses to appear before it. The bail bond posted by the accused for his provisional liberty was thereby cancelled. The public prosecutor filed a motion for reconsideration of said order, contending that the trial court acted arbitrarily and capriciously when it dismissed the case simply because three of its witnesses who were notified failed to appear at the initial pre-trial. The public prosecutor asserted that it had eleven witnesses but only three were subpoenaed by the trial court. He argued further that the dismissal of the case was not authorized under Republic Act No. 8493. The trial court issued an order denying the motion for reconsideration of the public prosecutor. The trial court alleged that under R.A. No. 8493, pre-trial is mandatory and the presence of the complaining witnesses is likewise required during the trial for the parties to participate in the plea bargaining and stipulation of facts during said proceedings, and if the complaining witnesses are absent, the principal purpose of the pre-trial cannot be achieved. The prosecution filed a Motion for Reconsideration which dismissed this case during the arraignment and pre-trial due to the non-appearance of the complaining witnesses. The People of the Philippines, through the OSG, filed a petition for certiorari with the Court of Appeals under Rule 65 of the 1997 Rules of Criminal Procedure, as amended, for the nullification of the orders of the trial court. On April 3, 2001, the Court of Appeals rendered a decision dismissing the petition on the ground that the errors committed by the trial court were mere errors of judgment which are not correctible by a writ of certiorari. Aggrieved, petitioner filed the present petition for the reversal of the decision of the Court of Appeals. Issue: Whether or not the absence during pre-trial of any witness for the prosecution listed in the Information is a valid ground for the dismissal of a criminal case.
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Ruling: The court held that Under R.A. 8493, the absence during pre-trial of any witness for the prosecution listed in the Information, whether or not said witness is the offended party or the complaining witness, is not a valid ground for the dismissal of a criminal case. Although under the law, pre-trial is mandatory in criminal cases, the presence of the private complainant or the complaining witness is however not required. Even the presence of the accused is not required unless directed by the trial court. It is enough that the accused is represented by his counsel. Indeed, even if none of the witnesses listed in the information for the State appeared for the pre-trial, the same can and should proceed. After all, the public prosecutor appeared for the State. The public prosecutor is vested with authority to consider those matters catalogued in Section 2 of R.A. 8493. Hence, the trial court acted without jurisdiction when it dismissed the case merely because none of the witnesses notified by the trial court appeared for the pre-trial

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Rule 119: Trial


EUGENE C. YU vs. THE HONORABLE PRESIDING JUDGE, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT OF TAGAYTAY CITY, BRANCH 18 G.R. No. 142848 June 30, 2006 Facts: Atty. Eugene Tan, former President of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) and his driver Eduardo Constantino were abducted by several persons in and brought somewhere in Cavite where they were both shot to death. Charged to investigate the abduction and killing was the Presidential Anti-Crime Commission (PACC). After having conducted a thorough investigation of the case, the PACC filed charges before the Department of Justice (DOJ).On December 13, 1994, the Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a Resolution in the preliminary investigation of the case finding probable cause against Messrs. Pedro Lim, Bonifacio Rojas, Capt. Alfredo Abad, Toto Mirasol, VenerandoOzores, Mariano Hizon, Eugenio Hizon and private respondents de los Santos and Ochoa for the kidnapping and murder of the late Atty. Eugene Tan and his driver, Eduardo Constantino. The charges against them however were dropped for lack of evidence to establish probable cause. During the preliminary investigation, petitioner filed a motion to dismiss the charges, citing that the sworn statements of private respondents were not only inadmissible in evidence but also failed to establish probable cause against him but the DOJ investigating panel composed of Senior State Prosecutors denied petitioners motion to dismiss. Thereafter, respondent judge issued a resolution finding the existence of probable cause. Both the prosecution and the petitioner filed their respective motions for reconsideration of the aforequoted resolution but both motions were denied in an order of the court a quo. Petitioner filed a Petition for Certiorari and prohibition before the Court of Appeals but the Court of Appeals dismissed the petition for lack of merit. The Motion for Reconsideration filed by petitioner was denied as well. the Court of Appeals concluded that there was no necessity for a hearing to determine a persons qualification as a state witness after the DOJ had attested to his qualification. Republic Act No. 6981, Witness Protection and Security Benefit Program (WPSBP), conferred upon the DOJ the sole authority to determine whether or not an accused is qualified for admission into the program. The appellate court held that under Section 12 of Republic Act No. 6981, upon the filing by the prosecution of a petition to discharge an accused from the information, it is mandatory for the court to order the discharge and exclusion of the accused. From this adverse decision and resolution of the Court of Appeals, petitioner filed the instant petition. Issue: Whether or not the discharge of an accused is a judicial function

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Ruling: An accused discharged from an information or criminal complaint by the court in order that he may be a State Witness pursuant to Sections 9 and 10 of Rule 119 of the Revised Rules of Court may upon his petition be admitted to the Program if he complies with the other requirements of this Act. Nothing in this Act shall prevent the discharge of an accused, so that he can be used as a State Witness under Rule 119 of the Revised Rules of Court. Evidence adduced in support of the discharge shall automatically form part of the trial. If the court denies the motion for discharge of the accused as state witness, his sworn statement shall be inadmissible in evidence. The discharge of an accused under Republic Act No. 6981 as availed of by the prosecution in favor of the private respondents, is distinct and separate from the discharge of an accused under Section 17, Rule 119 of the Revised Rules on Criminal Procedure. The discharge of an accused to be a state witness under Republic Act No. 6981 is only one of the modes for a participant in the commission of a crime to be a state witness. Rule 119, Section 17, of the Revised Rules on Criminal Procedure, is another mode of discharge. The immunity provided under Republic Act No. 6981 is granted by the DOJ while the other is granted by the court. Rule 119, Section 17, of the Revised Rules on Criminal Procedure, contemplates a situation where the information has been filed and the accused had been arraigned and the case is undergoing trial. The discharge of an accused under this rule may be ordered upon motion of the prosecution before resting its case, that is, at any stage of the proceedings, from the filing of the information to the time the defense starts to offer any evidence. On the other hand, in the discharge of an accused under Republic Act No. 6981, only compliance with the requirement of Section 14, Rule 110 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure is required but not the requirement of Rule 119, Section 17. G.R. No. 131377 February 11, 2003 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. HONORABLE NAZAR U. CHAVES, Judge, RTC-Cagayan de Oro City, Br. 18 and MIGUEL P. PADERANGA, respondents. Facts: Julito Ampo, Felizardo Roxas and Atty. Miguel Paderanga are among the accused in the killing of the members of Bucag Family in Gingoog City on October 1986. Paderanga was implicated by Roxas as the mastermind in the killing.The information of multiple murder case was first filed in RTC of Gingoog City but later on transferred to the Sala of Judge Chaves in RTC of Cagayan de Oro City. At the hearing on May 18, 1993, the prosecution called Roxas as its first witness and manifested its intention to present Ampo as another state witness, but Paderanga objected. The court took the matter under advisement. On May 19, 1993, the court sustained Paderangas objection and ruled that before Roxas can be presented as a witness for the prosecution, he must first be discharged as a state witness. The prosecution filed a motion for reconsideration or, in the alternative, to discharge Roxas as a state witness. On June 3, 1993, the court denied the motion for reconsideration but sets the motion for the discharge of Roxas as state witness for hearing. On June 29, 1993, the court allowed the
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presentation of Roxas testimony for purposed of proving the conditions on the discharges of a state witness under Section 9, Rule 119 of the Rules of Court. However, Paderanga interposed an objection, which was overruled. On June 30, 1993, Paderanga filed a motion for reconsideration, arguing that (1) the presentation of Roxas testimony will be tantamount to allowing him to testify as a state witness even before his discharge; (2) the qualification of a proposed state witness must be proved by evidence other than his own testimony; and (3) at the hearing for discharge of a proposed state witness, only his sworn statement can be presented and not his oral testimony, which was granted on July 15, 1993 on the courts view that only Roxas sworn statement may be admitted and considered by the Court . On August 9, 1993, the prosecution filed a motion for reconsideration, but was denied for lack of merit on September 23, 1993. On November 17, 1993, the prosecution elevated the case to the Court of Appeals, but was denied on November 7, 1997 for lack of merit. Consequently, the prosecution files in the Supreme Court a petition for review of the decision dated November 7, 1997 of the Court of Appeals, which dismissed the petition for certiorari assailing the Orders dated June 3, 1993; July 15, 1993; and September 23, 1993 of the Regional Trial Court of Cagayan de Oro City, contending that Roxas and Ampo have voluntarily expressed their consent to testify as prosecution witnesses, hence, there is no need to first discharge them as state witnesses before they can be presented on the stand. Issue: Whether or not the prosecution can validly present the testimony of Roxas and Ampo at the hearing for their discharge as state witnesses. Ruling: The prosecution can validly present Roxas and Ampos testimony at the hearing for their discharge as state witnesses. Rule 119, Section 17 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure (formerly Rule 119, Section 9), provides that the trial court may direct one or more of the accused to be discharged with their consent so that they may be witnesses for the state "after requiring the prosecution to present evidence and the sworn statement of each proposed state witness at a hearing in support of the discharge" The provision does not make any distinction as to the kind of evidence the prosecution may present. What it simply requires, in addition to the presentation of the sworn statement of the accused concerned, is the presentation of such evidence as are necessary to determine if the conditions exist for the discharge, so as to meet the object of the law, which is to prevent unnecessary or arbitrary exclusion from the complaint of persons guilty of the crime charged. No exemption from the term evidence is provided by the law as to exclude the testimony of the accused. When the law does not distinguish, we should not distinguish. There is no other evidence more competent than the testimony of the proposed witness himself to prove the conditions that his testimony is absolutely necessary in the case; that there is no other direct evidence available for the proper prosecution of the offense; that his testimony can be corroborated in its material points; that he does not appear to be the most guilty; and that he has not been convicted of any offense involving moral turpitude. Further, the trial judge will not be able to clarify matters found in the sworn statements of the proposed witnesses if they are not allowed to testify.
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WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED. The assailed decision of the Court of Appeals dated November 7, 1997 is REVERSED. G.R. No. 165496 February 12, 2007 HUN HYUNG PARK, petitioner, vs. EUNG WON CHOI, respondent. Facts: On August 31, 2000, Park filed a case against Choi for violating Bouncing Checks Law for issuing on June 28, 1999 a check postdated August 28, 1999 in the amount of P 1, 875,000 which was dishonored for having been drawn against insufficient funds. Choi pleaded not guilty. In the pre-trial conference, the prosecution presented its evidence-in-chief and rested its case thereafter. Choi filed a Motion for Leave of Court to File Demurrer to Evidence asserting that the prosecution failed to prove that he received the notice of dishonor. On February 27, 2003, MeTC of Makati granted the Demurrer and dismissed the case. The prosecutions Motion for Reconsideration was denied. However, Park appealed the civil aspect to the RTC of Makati which was granted on September 11, 2003 ordering Choi to pay the amount of P 1, 875, 000 with legal interest. Choi filed a motion for reconsideration and as a result, the RTC set aside its decision and ordered the remand of the case to the MeTC, so that Choi may adduce evidence on the civil aspect of the case. Parks motion for reconsideration of the remand of the case having been denied, he elevated the case to the CA which was dismissed. Consequently, Park files a petition in the Supreme Court assailing the CA Resolution dismissing his petition and denying reconsideration thereof, contending that Choi waived his right to present evidence on the civil aspect of the case (1) when the grant of the demurrer was reversed on appeal; and (2) when Choi orally opposed Parks motion for reconsideration pleading that proceedings with respect to the civil aspect for the case continue. Issue: Whether or not grant of demurrer and acquittal of the accused in a criminal case bar his right to adduce evidence on the civil aspect of the case. Ruling: If the courts grants the demurrer, proceedings on the civil aspect of the case generally proceeds. The only recognized instance when an acquittal on demurrer carries with it the dismissal of the civil aspect is when there is a finding that the act or omission from which the civil liability may arise did not exist. Absent such determination, trial as to the civil aspect of the case must perforce continue. Thus SC, in Salazar v. People, held that if demurrer is granted and the accused is acquitted by the court, the accused has the right to adduce evidence on the civil aspect of the case unless the court also declares that the act or omission from which the civil liability may arise did not exist. In the instant case, the MeTC granted the demurrer and dismissed the case without any finding that the act or omission from which the civil liability may arise did not exist. Respondent did not assail the RTC order of remand. He thereby recognized that there is basis for a remand.
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WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED. The case is REMANDED to the court of MeTC of Makati City for further proceedings only for the purpose of receiving evidence on the civil aspect of the case. G.R. No. 132081 November 26, 2002 JOEL M. SANVICENTE, petitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondent. Facts: On June 11, 1995, Sanvicente fatally shot Dennis Wong after Wong allegedly attempted to rob Sanvicente of a large amount of cash which he had just withdrawn from the automatic teller machine. Sanvicentes lawyer surrender the firearm and wrote a letter addressed to Station Commander of PNP Station 9 about the incident and provide that the letter shall serve as a voluntary surrender, without admission of guilt of Sanvicente. At the arraignment, Sanvicente pleaded not guilty. During the trial, the prosecution filed its Formal Offer of Exhibits which included the letter of Sanvicentes lawyer (Exhibit LL) and ballistic reports. On August 27, 1996, the court admitted all the prosecutions exhibits. Subsequently, Sanvicente begged leave to file a demurrer to evidence, which was grant by the trial court. On August 29, 1996, Sanvicente filed a Motion to Dismiss on demurrer to evidence based on (1) the lack of positive identification fo the accused is a fatal omission warranting dismissal; (2) prosecutions evidence are totally hearsay/incompetent, hence, inadmissible and the guilt of the accused was not proven by positive evidence beyond reasonable doubt. On October 7, 1996, the court dismissed the case together with the civil aspect thereof for insufficiency of evidence. The prosecution filed a motion for reconsideration which was denied on the ground that dismissal of the case double jeopardy had set in. The prosecution elevated the case to CA, which nullified the October 7, 1996 decision of the RTC. Sanvicente filed a motion for reconsideration but was likewise denied on the ground that the trial court committed grave abuse of discretion in preventing the prosecution from establishing the due authenticity of Exhibits LL which positively identified Sanvicente as the perpetrator of the crime charged. Issue: Whether or not the ruling on the grant of a demurrer to evidence carries with it finality of the decision. Ruling: Under Rule 119, Section 23 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, the grant or denial of a demurrer to evidence is left to the sound discretion of the trial court and its ruling on the matter shall not be disturbed in the absence of a grave abuse of discretion. Significantly, once the court grants the demurrer, such order amounts to an acquittal and any further prosecution of the accused would violate the constitutional proscription on double jeopardy. In the instant case, Supreme Court agree with the trial court that the letter marked as Exhibit LL is hearsay inasmuch as its probative force depends in whole or in part on the compentency and credibility of some person other than the witness by whom it is sought to
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produce it. SC find no grave abuse on the part of the trial court in dismissing the charges against Sanvicente. Wherefore, the petition is GRANTED. The decision of CA is REVERSED and SET ASIDE. G.R. No. 72670 September 12, 1986 SATURNINA GALMAN, REYNALDO GALMAN and JOSE P. BENGZON, MARY CONCEPCION BAUTISTA, JOAQUIN G. BERNAS; S.J., M. BELLARMINE BERNAS, O.S.B., FRANCISCO I. CHAVEZ, SOLITA COLLAS-MONSOD, SANTIAGO DUMLAO, JR., MARIA FERIA, MARCELO B. FERNAN, FRANCISCO GARCHITORENA, * ANDREW GONZALEZ, JOSE C. LAURETA, SALVADOR P. LOPEZ, FELIX K. MARAMBA, JR., CECILIA MUOZ PALMA. JAIME V. ONGPIN, FELIX PEREZ, JOSE B.L. REYES, JOSE E. ROMERO, JR., RAMON DEL ROSARIO, JR., RICARDO J. ROMULO, AUGUSTO SANCHEZ, EMMANUEL V. SORIANO, DAVID SYCIP, ENRIQUE SYQUIA, CRISTINA TAN, JESUS VARGAS, BERNARDO M. VILLEGAS, VICENTE JAYME, **,petitioners, vs. SANDIGANBAYAN, FIRST DIVISION (represented by Justice Manuel Pamaran, Chairman, and Justices Augusto Amores and Bienvenido Vera Cruz, Members), JUSTICE BERNARDO FERNANDEZ (Ombudsman) and GEN. FABIAN C. VER, MAJ. GEN. PROSPERO A. OLIVAS, BRIG. GEN. LUFHER A. CUSTODIO, COL. ARTURO G. CUSTODIO, COL. VICENTE B. TIGAS, JR., CAPT. FELIPE VALERIO, CAPT. LLEWELYN KAVINTA, CAPT. ROMEO M. BAUTISTA, 2nd LT. JESUS CASTRO, SGT. PABLO MARTINEZ, SGT. ARNULFO DE MESA, SGT. TOMAS FERNANDEZ, SGT. CLARO LAT, SGT. FILOMENO MIRANDA, SGT. ROLANDO C. DE GUZMAN, SGT. ERNESTO M. MATEO, SGT. RODOLFO M. DESOLONG, SGT. LEONARDO MOJICA, SGT. PEPITO TORIO, SGT. ARMANDO DELA CRUZ, SGT. PROSPERO A. BONA, CIC ROGELIO MORENO, CIC MARIO LAZAGA, AIC CORDOVA G. ESTELO, AIC ANICETO ACUPIDO and HERMILO GOSUICO, *** , respondents. Facts: On August 21, 1983, Benigno Aquino was assassinated in the Manila International Airport. The military investigator reported that Rolando Galman is the gunman. Marcos established Agrava Board to investigate the case. In October 1984, after hearing the testimonies of witnesses, the Agrava Board came up with a minority and majority report, both contending that the killing was a military conspiracy. Consequently, on November 11,1985, Galman with the other petitioners charged Tanod Bayan and the Sandiganbayan of serious irregularities constituting mistrial and resulting in the miscarriage of justice for want of due process of law. They prayed for a TRO, a nullification of the proceedings and a re-trial before an impartial tribunal by an unbiased prosecutor. On November 18, 1985, the TRO was granted by the Sandiganbayan but on November 28, 1985 it the petition was dismissed and the TRO is lifted. On November 29, 1985, the petitioners filed a motion for reconsideration based on the lack of legal ground for the dismissal. On December 5, 1985, all the accused were acquitted even though Galman was not on trial, he was in effect convicted as the assassin of Ninoy. On March 6, 1986, the Manila Times published an article entitled Aquino Trial A Sham, which had for its context the revelations of Deputy Tanodbayan Manuel Herrera that the graft court were convinced by Marcos to whitewash the criminal cases. On June 5, 1986, SC appointed Vasquez commission to hear and receive
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evidence of the charges of collusion and pressure. On June 31, 1986, the Vasquez Commission submitted its report with an affirmation of the secret meeting held in Malacanang, wherein Marcos ordered Justice Pamaran to handle the case and for the entire tribunal to have all of the accused acquitted. Issue: Whether or not motion for reconsideration after an acquittal is possible.

Ruling: As a rule, a judgment of acquittal cannot be reconsidered because it places the accused under double jeopardy. On occasions, however, a motion for reconsideration after an acquittal is possible. But the grounds are exceptional and narrow as when the court that absolved the accused gravely abused its discretion, resulting in loss of jurisdiction, or when a mistrial has occurred. In the instant case, the government proved that the prosecution was deprived of due process since the judgment of acquittal was dictated, coerced and was scripted. It was a sham trial. SC orders the re-trial of the case. G.R. No. 128587 March 16, 2007 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. HON. PERFECTO A.S. LAGUIO, JR., in his capacity as Presiding Judge, Branch 18, RTC, Manila, and LAWRENCE WANG Y CHEN, respondents. Facts: Lawrence Wang was charged of violation Dangerous Drugs Act, Illegal Possession of Firearms and Violation of Comelec Gun Ban. During the arraignment, Wang refused to enter a plea to all the Information. Thus, the court ordered that a plea of not guilty be entered. Thereafter, joint trial of the three consolidated cases followed. On December 6, 1996, the prosecution rested its case and upon motion, Wang was granted 25 days to file his intended Demurrer to Evidence. On December 19, 1996, the prosecution filed a manifestation that it had rested its case only for violation of the Dangerous Drugs Acts. On January 9, 1997, Wang filed his Demurrer to Evidence and prayed for his acquittal and the dismissal of the three cases against him for lack of a valid arrest and search warrants and the inadmissibility of the prosecutions evidence against him. On January 20, 1997, considering that the prosecution has not yet filed its Opposition to the demurrer, Wang filed an Amplificationto his Demurrer of Evidence. On February 12, 1997, the prosecution filed its Opposition alleging that the warrantless search was legal as an incident to the lawful arrest and that it has proven its case. On March 13, 1997, Judge Laguio, Jr. granted Wangs Demurrer to Evidence and acquitting Wang of all charges for lack of evidence. Issue: Whether or not an order granting an accuseds demurrer to evidence is a resolution of the case on the merits and it amounts to an acquittal.

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Ruling: An order granting an accuseds demurrer to evidence is a resolution of the case on the merits, and it amounts to an acquittal. Generally, any further prosecution of the accused after an acquittal would violate the constitutional proscription on double jeopardy. However, with the exceptions when the prosecution is denied due process of law. Under Section 23, Rule 119, the court may dismiss the action on the ground of insufficiency of evidence upon a demurrer to evidence with or without leave of court. Once, the court grants the demurrer, such order amounts to an acquittal and any further prosecution of the accused would violation rule on double jeopardy. In the instance case, Wang was not committing a crime nor about to do or just done so. What eh was doing was descending the gangplank of the M/V Wilcon 9 and there was no outward indication that called for his arrest. To all appearance, he was like any of the other passengers innocently disembarking from the vessel. Wherefore, the instant petition is DENIED. G.R. No. 169641 September 10, 2009 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. RICHARD O. SARCIA, accusedappellant. Facts: In 1996, a five year old girl was allegedly rape for almost four years. On Juy 7, 2000, the father of the chiled filed a complaint for acts lasciviousness against Sarcia. Upon review of the evidence, the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor at Ligao, Albay upgraded the charge to rape. Upon his arraignment on October 25, 2000, Sarcia pleaded not guilty. The prosecution present their evidence and on January 17, 2003, the trial court convicting Sarcia of the crime of rape. The case was elevated to CA but was likewise affirmed the decision of the trial court. On September 30, 2005, the case was elevated to the Supreme Court. The new rape law took effect in 1997 while the alleged crime was committed in 1996. In RA 7659, the penalty of death shall be imposed when the victim of rape is child below seven years of age. In this case, as the age of the child was 5 years old at the time the rape was committed, was alleged in the information and proven during the trial by presentation of her birth certificate. On March 14, 2002, Sarcia admitted that he was 24 years old, which means that in 1996, he was 18 years of age. Issue: Whether or not Sarcia is deemed a minor at the time of the commission of the offense and entitle him to the privileged mitigating circumstance of minority. Ruling: Sec. 68 of RA 9344 allows retroactive application of the Act to those who have been convicted and are serving sentence at the time of the effectivity of the act, and who were below the age of 18 years at the time of the commission of the offense. With more reason, the act should apply to this case wherein the conviction by the lower court is still under review. Wherefore, decision of the CA is confirmed.
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G.R. No. 186227 July 20, 2011 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, vs. ALLEN UDTOJAN MANTALABA, Accused-Appellant. Facts: Mantalaba was 17 years old when the buy-bust operation took place or when the offense charged was committed, but was no longer a minor at the time of the promulgation of the RTC decision. The RA 9344 took effect on May 20, 2006, while the RTC promulgated its decision on September 14, 2005, when Mantalaba was no longer a minor. Issue: Whether or not suspension of sentence can still be applied to Mantalaba Ruling: Section 38 of RA 9344 provides that suspension of sentence can still be applied even if the child in conflict with the law is already eighteen (18) years of age or more at the time of the pronouncement of his/her guilt, Section 40 of the same law limits the said suspension of sentence until the child reaches the maximum age of 21. Hence, the Mantalaba, who is now beyond the age of 21 years can no longer avail of the provisions of Sections 38 and 40 of RA 9344 a shis suspension of sentence, because this has already become moot and academic. Wherefore, the decision of CA is AFFIRMED.

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Rule 120: Judgment


G.R. No. 185960 January 25, 2012 MARINO B. ICDANG, petitioner, vs. SANDIGANBAYAN and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Facts: Mariano Icdang was the Regional Director of the Office for Souther Cultural Communities Region XII in Cotabato City. On January 19, 1988, COA formed a special audit team to conduct comprehensive audit on the 1996 funds for livelihood projects of Region XII. On the report, Icdang was granted cash advances which remained unliquidated and had a shortage of P219, 392.75. It was found out that funds were cash advanced for projects that were never implemented.Consequently, a demand letter was sent by the COA to immediately produce the missing funds. On March 19, 1996, Icdang requested for one week extension to comply with the directive. However, the extension period had lapse. This cause the audit team to file administrative and criminal charges against Icdang for violation of Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. On May 26, 2008, the Sandiganbayan convicted Icdang of malversation and acquitting him for violation of RA 3019. Icdang was sentence for 10 years imprisonment, perpetual disqualification and to pay 196,000.00. Icdang filed a motion for reconsideration requesting that he be given another chance to present his evidence, stating that his inability to attend the trial were due to financial constraints. However, the SB denied the motion noting that the decision has become final and executor on June 10, 2008 for failure of Icdang to file a motion for reconsideration, or new trial, or appeal before the date. Issue: Whether or not Sandiganbayan committed a grave abuse of discretion when it rendered its decision despite the knowledge that Icdang was not able to adduce hi evidence due to various circumstances. Ruling: There is grave abuse of discretion where the public respondent acts in a capricious, whimsical, arbitrary or despotic manner in the exercise of its judgment as to be equivalent to lack of jurisdiction. The abuse of discretion must be so patent and gross as to amount to an evasion of a positive duty or a virtual refusal to perform a duty enjoined by law, or to act at all in contemplation of law as where the power is exercised in an arbitrary and despotic manner by reason of passion or hostility.Under the facts on record, we find no grave abuse of discretion on the part of the SB when it submitted the case for decision and rendered the judgment of conviction on the basis of the prosecution evidence after the defense failed to present its evidence despite ample opportunity to do so. Wherefore, the petition is DISMISSED. The decisions promulgated on May 26, 2008 and November 18, 2008 by the Sandiganbayan are AFFIRMED.

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G.R. No. L-24529 February 17, 1968 EDUARDO JIMENEZ, petitioner, vs. REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES and JUDGE PEDRO NAVARRO, Court of First Instance of Rizal, respondents. Facts: In a complaint filed on June 7, 19955, in the CFI of Zamboaga, the husband prays for a decree for annulling his marriage to his wife on the ground that the office of the wifes genitals was too small to allow the penetration of a male organ or penis for copulation. On June 14, 1955, the wife was summoned and served a copy of the complaint. She did not file an answer. On September 29, 1956, the court inquires whether there was a collusion, to intervene for the State to see that the evidence of the husband is not a frame-up, concocted, or fabricated. On December 17, 1956, the Court entered an order requiring the wife to submit to a physical examination and submit within ten days from receipt of the order, a medical certificate of the result. On March 14, 1957, the wife was granted additional 5 days to comply. On April 11, 1957, the wife did not show. The court deemed lack of interest on her part in the case. The Court entered a decree annulling the marriage between the wife and the husband. On April 26, 1957, the city attorney filed a motion for reconsideration of the decree on the ground that the wifes impotency was not satisfactorily established; that instead of annulling the marriage the court should have punished her for contempt of court and compelled her to undergo examination; and that the decree sought to be reconsidered would open the door to married couple, who want to end their marriage to collude or connive with each other by just alleging impotency of one of them. On May 13, 1957, the motion for reconsideration was denied. Issue: Whether or not the decree issued by the court is valid.

Ruling: The law specifically enumerates the legal grounds that must be proved to exit by indubitable evidence, to annul a marriage. In the case at bar, the annulment of the marriage in question was decreed upon the sole testimony of the husband who was expected to give testimony tending or aiming at securing the annulment of his marriage he sought and seeks. The decree is set aside and the case was remanded to the lower court for further proceedings in accordance with the decision.

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A.M. No. MTJ-02-1417 May 27, 2004 PETER BEJARASCO, JR. and ISABELITA BEJARASCO, complainants, vs. JUDGE ALFREDO D. BUENCONSEJO, Municipal Trial Court, Dalaguete, Cebu, SECUNDINO PIEDAD, Clerk of Court, and LEONISA GONZALES, Court Stenographer, Municipal Trial Court, Argao, Cebu, respondents. Facts: The two Bejarasco was charge by Dr. Fonghe with grave threats and grave oral defamation before the MTC of Dumaguete, Cebu. Judge Buenconsejo inhibited himself on the gournd of delicadeza. Judge Calderon conducted continuous and simultaneous trials, and the cases were submitted for decision on June 29, 1999. Unfortunately, Judge Calderon died on December 31, 1999 without having rendered judgment. The complainant alleged that they were surprised to receive notice that the criminal case had been set for promulgation on May 15, 2000 by Judge Buenconsejo. Another notice of promulgation was received on May 29, 2000, on this date, the Bejarascos counsel argued that the judge could not promulgate the decision since he had earlier inhibited himself from trying the case, however, Judge Buenconsejo ignored the arguments and proceeded with the promulgation and convicting both the complainant. Issue: Whether or not the judgment rendered by Judge Buenconsejo is valid Ruling: SECTION 1. Judgment; definition and form. Judgment is the adjudication by the court that the accused is guilty or not guilty of the offense charged and theimposition on him of the proper penalty and civil liability, if any. It must be written in the official language, personally and directly prepared by the judge and signed by him and shall contain clearly and distinctly a statement of the factsand law upon which it is based. Thus, a judgment, to be valid, must have been personally and directly prepared by the judge, and duly signed by him. Corollary, a decision or resolution of the court becomes such, for all legal intents and purposes, only from the moment of its promulgation. Promulgation of judgment, in turn, signifies that on the date it was made, the judge or judges who signed the decision continued to support it. If at the time of the promulgation, a judge or member of a collegiate court has already vacated his office, his vote is automatically withdrawn. In criminal cases, promulgation of judgment is made by reading it in the presence of the accused and any judge of the court in which it was rendered. Judgment may be promulgated by the clerk of court only when the judge is absent or outside the province or city. It is clear then, that a judge who takes over the sala of another judge who died during office cannot validly promulgate a decision penned by the latter. In fact, decisions promulgated after the judge who penned the same had been appointed to and qualified in another office are null and void. To be binding, a judgment must be duly signed and promulgated during the incumbency of the judge whose signature appears thereon. In single courts like the regional trial courts and the municipal trial courts, a decision may no longer be promulgated after the ponente has vacated his office. The respondent judge cannot, likewise, claim that his only participation in the promulgation of the
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questioned decision was "merely an exercise of a ministerial duty to enforce the said decision which was already long rendered by the judge who actually and completely heard the above-mentioned criminal cases on the merits." It must be stressed that the respondent judge had earlier inhibited himself from the cases in question, and that Judge Calderon was designated to hear and try the cases in his stead. The mere fact that the respondent judge was designated as Presiding Judge of Branch 26 following the death of Judge Calderon does not necessarily mean that his previous inhibition in relation to the criminal cases in question has been lifted. That would be an absurdity, as a valid designation presupposes that the judge so designated has not inhibited himself from the cases assigned/raffled to the said branch. G.R. No. 182748, December 13, 2011 ARNEL COLINARES, petitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondent. Facts: Arnel Colinares was found guilty by the RTC of frustrated murder and was sentenced to two years and four months to six years and one day. Since the maximum probationable imprisonment under the law was only up to six years, Arnel did not qualify for probation. He subsequently appealed to the Court of Appeals seeking conviction for a lesser crime of attempted homicide with the consequent reduction of the penalty imposed on him but the CA entirely affirmed the decision of the RTC. Unsatisfied with the judgment of the CA, Arnel filed a petition for review with the Supreme Court. In the course of its deliberation on the case, the Court required Arnel and the Solicitor General to submit their respective positions on whether or not, assuming Arnel committed only the lesser crime of attempted homicide with its imposable penalty of imprisonment of four months of arresto mayor, as minimum, to two years and four months of prision correccional, as maximum, he could still apply for probation upon remand of the case to the trial court. Issue: court. Whether or not he may still apply for probation on remand of the case to the trial

Ruling: Ordinarily, Arnel would no longer be entitled to apply for probation, he having appealed from the judgment of the RTC convicting him for frustrated homicide. But, the Court finds Arnel guilty only of the lesser crime of attempted homicide and holds that the maximum of the penalty imposed on him should be lowered to imprisonment of four months of arresto mayor, as minimum, to two years and four months of prision correccional, as maximum. With this new penalty, it would be but fair to allow him the right to apply for probation upon remand of the case to the RTC. But, firstly, while it is true that probation is a mere privilege, the point is not that Arnel has the right to such privilege; he certainly does not have. What he has is the right to apply for that privilege. The Court finds that his maximum jail term should only be 2 years and 4 months. If the Court allows him to apply for probation because of the lowered
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penalty, it is still up to the trial judge to decide whether or not to grant him the privilege of probation, taking into account the full circumstances of his case. Secondly, it is true that under the probation law the accused who appeals from the judgment of conviction is disqualified from availing himself of the benefits of probation. But, as it happens, two judgments of conviction have been meted out to Arnel: one, a conviction for frustrated homicide by the regional trial court, now set aside; and, two, a conviction for attempted homicide by the Supreme Court. The Probation Law, said the Court in Francisco, requires that an accused must not have appealed his conviction before he can avail himself of probation. This requirement outlaws the element of speculation on the part of the accusedto wager on the result of his appealthat when his conviction is finally affirmed on appeal, the moment of truth well-nigh at hand, and the service of his sentence inevitable, he now applies for probation as an escape hatch thus rendering nugatory the appellate courts affirmance of his conviction. Here, however, Arnel did not appeal from a judgment that would have allowed him to apply for probation. He did not have a choice between appeal and probation. He was not in a position to say, By taking this appeal, I choose not to apply for probation. The stiff penalty that the trial court imposed on him denied him that choice. Thus, a ruling that would allow Arnel to now seek probation under this Courts greatly diminished penalty will not dilute the sound ruling in Francisco. It remains that those who will appeal from judgments of conviction, when they have the option to try for probation, forfeit their right to apply for that privilege. Besides, in appealing his case, Arnel raised the issue of correctness of the penalty imposed on him. He claimed that the evidence at best warranted his conviction only for attempted, not frustrated, homicide, which crime called for a probationable penalty. In a way, therefore, Arnel sought from the beginning to bring down the penalty to the level where the law would allow him to apply for probation. At any rate, what is clear is that, had the RTC done what was right and imposed on Arnel the correct penalty of two years and four months maximum, he would have had the right to apply for probation. No one could say with certainty that he would have availed himself of the right had the RTC done right by him. The idea may not even have crossed his mind precisely since the penalty he got was not probationable. WHEREFORE, the Court PARTIALLY GRANTS the petition.

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Rule 121: New Trial or Reconsideration


G.R. No. L-38581, March 31, 1976 LORENZO JOSE, petitioner, vs. THE COURT OF APPEALS and THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents Facts: Petitioner Lorenzo Jose was arrested by the local police leading to the filing with the Court of First Instance of Pampanga of several criminal cases against him to wit: illegal discharge of firearm robbery and illegal possession of explosives. These three cases were jointly tried after which the trial judge. In its decision, the trial court acquitted accused Lorenzo Jose of illegal discharge of firearm and robbery, but convicted him for illegal possession of the handgrenade that was found on his person at the time of his arrest. After promulgation of the judgment, petitioner on that same day filed his notice of appeal. Nine days thereafter petitioner filed a motion praying that the case be reopened to permit him to present, pursuant to a reservation he had made in the course of the trial, a permit to possess the handgrenade in question. The trial court in its order of January 30, 1970 denied the motion mainly on the ground that it had lost jurisdiction over the case in view of the perfection of the appeal by the accused on the very date the decision was promulgated. Jose elevated his case to the Court of Appeals alleging erroneous conviction and erroneous denial of his motion to reopen his case. The appellate court denied the appeal upholding the decision of the trial court and subsequent motions for new trial or reconsideration was also denied. The petitioner then filed with the Supreme Court a petition for review which was denied outright, hence, this motion for reconsideration. Issue: Did respondent appellate court commit an error of law and gravely abuse its discretion when it denied petitioner's motion for new trial "for the reception of (1) the written permit of petitioner to possess and use handgrenade, and (2) the written appointment of petitioner as PC agent with Code No. P-36-68 and code Name 'Safari'? Ruling: We do not question the correctness of the findings of the Court of Appeals that the evidence sought to be presented by the petitioner do not fall under the category of newlydiscovered evidence because the same his alleged appointment as an agent of the Philippine Constabulary and a permit to possess a handgrenade were supposed to be known to petitioner and existing at the time of trial and not discovered only thereafter. It is indeed an established rule that for a new trial to be granted on the ground of newly discovered evidence, it must be shown that (a) the evidence was discovered after trial; (b) such evidence could not have been discovered and produced at the trial even with the exercise of reasonable diligence; (c) the evidence is material, not merely cumulative, corroborative, or impeaching; and (d) it must go to the merits as ought to produce a different result if admitted.

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However, petitioner herein does not justify his motion for a new trial on newly discovered evidence, but rather on broader grounds of substantial justice under Sec. 11, Rule 124 of the Rules of Court which provides: Power of appellate court on appeal. Upon appeal from a judgement of the Court of First Instance, the appellate court may affirm or modify the judgment and increase or reduce the penalty imposed by the trial court, remand the case to the Court of First Instance for new trial or retrial, or dismiss the case. Petitioner asserts, and correctly so, that the authority of respondent appellate court over an appealed case is broad and ample enough to embrace situations as the instant case where the court may grant a new trial or a retrial for reasons other than that provided in Section 13 of the same Rule, or Section 2, Rule 121 of the Rules of Court. 13 While Section 13, Rule 124, and Section 2, Rule 121, provide for specific grounds for a new trial, i.e. newly discovered evidence, and errors of law or irregularities committed during the trial. Section 11, Rule 124 quoted above does not so specify, thereby leaving to the sound discretion of the court the determination, on a case to case basis, of what would constitute meritorious circumstances warranting a new trial or re-trial. We find and hold that the above circumstances justify a reopening of petitioner's cas to afford him the opportunity of producing exculpating exculpating evidence. An outright acquittal from this Court which petitioner seeks as an alternative relief is not As correctly stressed by the Solicitor General, the People is to be given the chance of examining the documentary sought to be produced, and of cross-examining the persons who executed the same, as well as the accused himself, now petitioner, on his explanation for the nonproduction of the of the evidence during the trial. PREMISES CONSIDERED. G.R. Nos. 96027-28. March 08, 2005 BRIG. GEN. LUTHER A. CUSTODIO*, CAPT. ROMEO M. BAUTISTA, 2ND LT. JESUS D. CASTRO, SGT. CLARO L. LAT, SGT. ARNULFO B. DE MESA, C1C ROGELIO B. MORENO, C1C MARIO E. LAZAGA, SGT. FILOMENO D. MIRANDA, SGT. ROLANDO C. DEGGUZMAN, SGT. ERNESTO M. MATEO, SGT. RODOLFO M. DESOLONG, A1C CORDOVA G. ESTELO, MSGT. PABLO S. MARTINEZ, SGT. RUBEN AQUINO, SGT. ARNULFO ARTATES, A1C FELIZARDO TARAN, petitioners, vs. SANDIGANBAYAN AND PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Facts: Petitioners were members of the military who acted as Senator Aquinos security detail upon his arrival in Manila from his three-year sojourn in the United States. They were charged, together with several other members of the military, before the Sandiganbayan for the killing of Senator Aquino who was fatally shot as he was coming down from the aircraft of China Airlines at the Manila International Airport. Petitioners were also indicted for the killing of Rolando Galman who was also gunned down at the airport tarmac. On December 2, 1985, the Sandiganbayan rendered a Decision in Criminal Cases Nos. 10010-10011 acquitting all the accused, which include the petitioners. However,
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the proceedings before the Sandiganbayan were later found by this Court to be a sham trial. The Court thus nullified said proceedings, as well as the judgment of acquittal, and ordered a re-trial of the cases and a re-trial ensued before the Sandiganbayan. In its decision dated September 28, 1990, the Sandiganbayan, while acquitting the other accused, found the petitioners guilty as principals of the crime of murder in both Criminal Cases Nos. 10010 and 10011. It sentenced them to reclusion perpetua in each case. The judgment became final after this Court denied petitioners petition for review of the Sandiganbayan decision for failure to show reversible error in the questioned decision, as well as their subsequent motion for reconsideration. In August 2004, petitioners requested the Independent Forensic Group of the University of the Philippines to make a thorough review of the forensic evidence in the double murder case. The petitioners now want to present the findings of the forensic group to this Court and ask the Court to allow the re-opening of the cases and the holding of a third trial to determine the circumstances surrounding the death of Senator Benigno Aquino, Jr. and Rolando Galman under the following grounds: 1. Existence of newly discovered pieces of evidence that were not available during the second trial of the above-entitled cases which could have altered the judgment of the Sandiganbayan 2. There was a grave violation of due process 3. There was serious misapprehension of facts on the part of the Sandiganbayan based on false forensic evidence, which entitles petitioners-movants to a re-trial. Issue: Whether petitioners are entitled to a third trial under Rule 121 of the 2000 Rules of Criminal Procedure. Ruling: The pertinent sections of Rule 121 of the 2000 Rules of Criminal Procedure provide: Section 1. New Trial or reconsideration. At any time before a judgment of conviction becomes final, the court may, on motion of the accused or at its own instance but with the consent of the accused, grant a new trial or reconsideration. Sec. 2. Grounds for a new trial. The court shall grant a new trial on any of the following grounds: (a) That errors of law or irregularities prejudicial to the substantial rights of the accused have been committed during the trial; (b) That new and material evidence has been discovered which the accused could not with reasonable diligence have discovered and produced at the trial and which if introduced and admitted would probably change the judgment.
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Sec. 6. Effects of granting a new trial or reconsideration. The effects of granting a new trial or reconsideration are the following: (a) When a new trial is granted on the ground of errors of law or irregularities committed during the trial, all the proceedings and evidence affected thereby shall be set aside and taken anew. The court may, in the interest of justice, allow the introduction of additional evidence. (b) When a new trial is granted on the ground of newly discovered evidence, the evidence already adduced shall stand and the newly-discovered and such other evidence as the court may, in the interest of justice, allow to be introduced shall be taken and considered together with the evidence already in the record. (c) In all cases, when the court grants new trial or reconsideration, the original judgment shall be set aside or vacated and a new judgment rendered accordingly. In line with the objective of the Rules of Court to set guidelines in the dispensation of justice, but without shackling the hands that dispense it, the remedy of new trial has been described as a new invention to temper the severity of a judgment or prevent the failure of justice. Thus, the Rules allow the courts to grant a new trial when there are errors of law or irregularities prejudicial to the substantial rights of the accused committed during the trial, or when there exists newly discovered evidence. In the proceedings for new trial, the errors of law or irregularities are expunged from the record or new evidence is introduced. Thereafter, the original judgment is vacated and a new one is rendered. Under the Rules, a person convicted of a crime may avail of the remedy of new trial before the judgment of conviction becomes final. Petitioners admit that the decision of the Sandiganbayan in Criminal Cases Nos. 10010 and 10011 became final and executory upon denial of their petition for review filed before this Court and their motion for reconsideration. Entry of judgment has in fact been made on September 30, 1991. Nonetheless, they maintain that equitable considerations exist in this case to justify the relaxation of the Rules and re-open the case to accord petitioners the opportunity to present evidence that will exonerate them from the charges against them. We do not find merit in their submission. Petitioners anchor their motion on the ground of newly discovered evidence. Courts are generally reluctant in granting motions for new trial on the ground of newly discovered evidence for it is presumed that the moving party has had ample opportunity to prepare his case carefully and to secure all the necessary evidence before the trial. Such motions are treated with great caution due to the danger of perjury and the manifest injustice of allowing a party to allege that which may be the consequence of his own neglect to defeat an adverse judgment. Hence, the moving party is often required to rebut a presumption that the judgment is correct and that there has been a lack of due diligence, and to establish other facts essential to warrant the granting of a new trial on the ground of newly discovered evidence. This Court has repeatedly held that before a new trial may be
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granted on the ground of newly discovered evidence, it must be shown (1) that the evidence was discovered after trial; (2) that such evidence could not have been discovered and produced at the trial even with the exercise of reasonable diligence; (3) that it is material, not merely cumulative, corroborative, or impeaching; and (4) the evidence is of such weight that it would probably change the judgment if admitted. If the alleged newly discovered evidence could have been very well presented during the trial with the exercise of reasonable diligence, the same cannot be considered newly discovered. It should be emphasized that the applicant for new trial has the burden of showing that the new evidence he seeks to present has complied with the requisites to justify the holding of a new trial. The threshold question in resolving a motion for new trial based on newly discovered evidence is whether the proferred evidence is in fact a newly discovered evidence which could not have been discovered by due diligence. The question of whether evidence is newly discovered has two aspects: a temporal one, i.e., when was the evidence discovered, and a predictive one, i.e., when should or could it have been discovered. It is to the latter that the requirement of due diligence has relevance. We have held that in order that a particular piece of evidence may be properly regarded as newly discovered to justify new trial, what is essential is not so much the time when the evidence offered first sprang into existence nor the time when it first came to the knowledge of the party now submitting it; what is essential is that the offering party had exercised reasonable diligence in seeking to locate such evidence before or during trial but had nonetheless failed to secure it. Applying the foregoing tests, we find that petitioners purported evidence does not qualify as newly discovered evidence that would justify the re-opening of the case and the holding of a third trial. The report of the forensic group may not be considered as newly discovered evidence as petitioners failed to show that it was impossible for them to secure an independent forensic study of the physical evidence during the trial of the double murder case. It appears from their report that the forensic group used the same physical and testimonial evidence proferred during the trial, but made their own analysis and interpretation of said evidence. These materials were available to the parties during the trial and there was nothing that prevented the petitioners from using them at the time to support their theory that it was not the military, but Rolando Galman, who killed Senator Aquino. Petitioners, in their present motion, failed to present any new forensic evidence that could not have been obtained by the defense at the time of the trial even with the exercise of due diligence. If they really wanted to seek and offer the opinion of other forensic experts at the time regarding the physical evidence gathered at the scene of the crime, there was ample opportunity for them to do so before the case was finally submitted and decided. The report of the forensic group essentially reiterates the theory presented by the defense during the trial of the double murder case. Clearly, the report is not newly discovered, but rather recently sought, which is not allowed by the Rules. As additional support to their motion for new trial, petitioners also claim that they were denied due process because they were deprived of adequate legal assistance by counsel. The general rule is that the client is bound by the action of his counsel in the
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conduct of his case and cannot be heard to complain that the result of the litigation might have been different had his counsel proceeded differently. The held in People vs. Umali: In criminal as well as civil cases, it has frequently been held that the fact that blunders and mistakes may have been made in the conduct of the proceedings in the trial court, as a result of the ignorance, inexperience, or incompetence of counsel, does not furnish a ground for a new trial. If such grounds were to be admitted as reasons for reopening cases, there would never be an end to a suit so long as new counsel could be employed who could allege and show that prior counsel had not been sufficiently diligent, or experienced, or learned. So it has been held that mistakes of attorneys as to the competency of a witness, the sufficiency, relevancy, materiality, or immateriality of a certain evidence, the proper defense, or the burden of proof are not proper grounds for a new trial; and in general the client is bound by the action of his counsel in the conduct of his case, and can not be heard to complain that the result of the litigation might have been different had counsel proceeded differently. In view whereof, the motion is DENIED.

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Rule 122: Appeal


G.R. No. 128986 June 21, 1999 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS and CASAN MAQUILING, respondents. Facts: On June 13, 1988, respondent Casan Maquiling was charged with homicide and frustrated homicide. Acting on the petition of the private complainants, the Department of Justice subsequently directed the upgrading of the charge of homicide to murder. To both charges, respondent Maquiling, entered a plea of not guilty upon his arraignment on June 5, 1989. Trial ensued. Thereafter, the trial court rendered its Decision convicting private respondent of homicide and serious physical injuries. In reversing the trial court, the Court of Appeals accepted the claim of self-defense. Issue: Whether or not the Assailed Decision, dated 24 March 1997, of respondent court is void ab initio, for having been rendered in denial of due process and with grave abuse of discretion. Ruling: The rule against double jeopardy proscribes an appeal from a judgment of acquittal. If said judgment is assailed in a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court, as in the present case, the petitioner must prove that the lower court, in acquitting the accused, committed not merely reversible errors, but grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction. A judgment rendered with grave abuse of discretion or without due process is void, does not exist in legal contemplation and, thus, cannot be the source of an acquittal. However, where the petition demonstrate mere errors in judgment not amounting to grave abuse of discretion or deprivation of due process, the writ of certiorari cannot issue. A review of alleged errors of judgments cannot be made without trampling upon the right of the accused against double jeopardy. Ordinarily, the judicial recourse of an aggrieved party is to appeal the trial court's judgment to the Court of Appeals and thereafter, to the Supreme Court in a petition for review under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. In such cases, this tribunal is limited to the determination of whether the lower court committed reversible error or, in other words, mistakes of judgment. A direct review by the Supreme Court is the normal recourse of the accused, where the penalty imposed by the trial court is death, reclusion perpetua or life imprisonment. The rule on double jeopardy, however, prohibits the state from appealing or filing a petition for review of a judgment of acquittal that was based on the merits of the case. Thus, Section 2, Rule 122 of the Rules of Court reads: Sec. 2. Who may appeal. Any party may appeal from a final judgment or order, except if the accused would be placed thereby in double jeopardy.

This rule stems from the constitutional mandate stating that no person shall be put twice in jeopardy for the same offense. xxx" It is rooted in the early case U.S. v. Kepner, in which the United States Supreme Court, reviewing a Philippine Supreme Court decision, declared that an appeal by the prosecution from a judgment of acquittal would place the defendant in double jeopardy. Double jeopardy is present if the following elements concur: (1) the accused individuals are charged under a complaint or information sufficient in form and substance to sustain their conviction; (2) the court has jurisdiction; (3) the accused have been arraigned and have pleaded; and (4) they are convicted or acquitted, or the case is dismissed without their express consent. In the case at bar, there are no questions as regards the existence of the first, third and fourth elements. Petitioner, however, questions the presence of the second element and submits that Respondent Court of Appeals was ousted of its jurisdiction, because it denied the petitioner due process and because it committed grave abuse of discretion. To question the jurisdiction of the lower court or the agency exercising judicial or quasi judicial functions, the remedy is a special civil action for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court. The petitioner in such cases must clearly show that the public respondent acted without jurisdiction or with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction. It has been held, however, that no grave abuse of discretion may be attributed to a court simply because of its alleged misappreciation of facts and evidence. A writ of certiorari may not be used to correct a lower tribunal's evaluation of the evidence and factual findings. In other words, it is not a remedy for mere errors of judgment, which are correctible by an appeal or a petition for review under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. In fine, certiorari will issue only to correct errors of jurisdiction, not errors of procedure or mistakes in the findings or conclusions of the lower court. As long as a court acts within its jurisdiction, any alleged errors committed in the exercise of its discretion will amount to nothing more than errors of judgment which are reviewable by timely appeal and not by special civil action for certiorari. A denial of due process likewise results in loss or lack of jurisdiction. Accordingly, no double jeopardy would attach where the state is deprived of a fair opportunity to prosecute and prove its case, or where the dismissal of an information or complaint is purely capricious or devoid of reason, or when there is lack of proper notice and opportunity to be heard. Wherefore, the petition is hereby DISMISSED for its failure to clearly show grave abuse of discretion on the part of the Court of Appeals. No costs. G.R. No. 103275 June 15, 1994 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. HONORABLE RODOLFO M. BELLAFLOR, Assisting Judge, Branch 28, Regional Trial Court, Mandaue City, and REUBEN ALBAO, respondents. Facts: Private respondent Reuben Albao, the accused in Criminal Case No. DU-1805, was charged with the crime of arson before the Regional Trial Court, then presided by Judge Willelmo C. Fortun as assisting judge. Upon arraignment, private respondent pleaded "not
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guilty". Thereafter, trial on the merits ensued and the parties rested their case before Judge Fortun. It appears that on February 4, 1991, Judge Fortun was designated as Assisting Judge for the Regional Trial Court in the National Capital Judicial Region, to hold office in the Office of the Court Administrator of the Supreme Court in Manila. On March 13, 1991, respondent judge Rodolfo M. Bellaflor was assigned as replacement of Judge Fortun wherein the criminal case against private respondent was pending. On May 3, 1991, Judge Fortun promulgated his decision dated February 6, 1991, convicting private respondent of the crime of arson. At the time of promulgation of Judge Fortun's decision, respondent judge was already presiding as assisting judge. On May 9, 1991 private respondent moved for the reconsideration of the said decision. On June 26, 1991, respondent judge issued a resolution granting private respondent's motion for reconsideration and acquitted the latter of the crime charged. In the same resolution, the decision rendered by Judge Fortun was declared null and void for having been promulgated after said judge had vacated his office and after being assigned to the Office of the Court Administrator in Manila. On August 1, 1991, petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration but the same was denied. Issue: Whether or not the resolution acquitting him of the offense charged has become final and executory and a reconsideration thereof would place him under double jeopardy. Ruling: Private respondent's reliance on the defense of double jeopardy is misplaced. In order that a defendant may successfully allege former jeopardy, it is necessary that he had previously been (1) convicted or (2) acquitted, or (3) in jeopardy of being convicted of the offense charged, that is, that the former case against him for the same offense has been dismissed or otherwise terminated without his express consent, by a court of competent jurisdiction, upon a valid complaint or information, and after the defendant has pleaded to the charge. (People vs. Asuncion, 208 SCRA 231 [1992], People vs. Puno, 208 SCRA [1992], Bogo Medellin vs. Son, 209 SCRA 329 [1992]). Generally, protection against double jeopardy is not available where the dismissal of the case was effected at the instance of the accused. And there are only two instances where double jeopardy will attach notwithstanding the fact the case was dismissed with the express consent of the accused. The first is where the ground for the dismissal is insufficiency of the evidence for the prosecution and the second is where the criminal proceedings have been unreasonably prolonged in violation of the accused's right to speedy trial (People v. Quizada, 160 SCRA 516 [1988]). None exists in the case at bar. Admittedly, private respondent had moved for the dismissal of the criminal case filed against him and therefore, the protective mantle of double jeopardy does not cover him. As pointed out by the Solicitor General: . . . , private respondent's acquittal was upon his motion and with his express consent. In People v.Villon, 192 SCRA 521, this Honorable Court likewise stated:
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However, an appeal by the prosecution from the order of dismissal of the criminal case shall not constitute double jeopardy if (1) the dismissal is made upon motion, or with the express consent of the defendant, and (2) the dismissal is not an acquittal or based upon consideration of the evidence or of the merits of the case; and (3) the question to be passed upon by the appellate court is purely legal so that should the dismissal be found incorrect, the case would have to be remanded to the court of origin for further proceedings, to determine the guilt or innocence of the defendant. WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED

G.R. No. 43659 December 21, 1990 192 SCRA 521 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioner, vs. HON. FELICIDAD CARANDANG VILLALON and FEDERICO DE GUZMAN, respondents. Facts: On March 29, 1974, a ciminal case for Estafa thru falsification of a public document was filed against private respondent Federico De Guzman in the then Court of First Instance. After arraignment where private respondent pleaded not guilty, the case proceeded to trial. After Col. Jose G. Fernandez, a handwriting expert, gave his partial testimony, the same was not continued as counsel for private respondent moved for and was granted leave to file a motion to dismiss. On December 16, 1975, the motion to dismiss was filed, wherein it was alleged that the crime charged would not lie due to the partial testimony of complainant. Presiding Judge Manuel Castaeda of the CFI dismissed the case on January 28, 1976 on the ground that the crime had prescribed. The People's motion for reconsideration was denied by the succeeding Presiding Judge Felicidad Carandang Villalon. On March 25, 1976, the prosecution filed a notice of appeal from both orders of the trial court. Issue: Whether the People could appeal from the order of dismissal because the private respondent would thereby be placed in double jeopardy. Ruling: The bar of double jeopardy is not involved in the present recourse. As enunciated in People vs. City Court of Manila, etc., et al.: "As a general rule, the dismissal or termination of the case after arraignment and plea of the defendant to a valid information shall be a bar to another prosecution for the offense charged, or for any attempt to commit the same or frustration thereof, or for any offense which necessarily includes or is necessarily included in the complaint or information (Section 9, Rule 113). However, an appeal by the prosecution from the order of dismissal (of the
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criminal case) by the trial court shall not constitute double jeopardy if (1) the dismissal is made upon motion, or with the express consent, of the defendant, and (2) the dismissal is not an acquittal or based upon consideration of the evidence or of the merits of the case; and (3) the question to be passed upon by the appellate court is purely legal so that should the dismissal be found incorrect, the case would have to be remanded to the court of origin for further proceedings, to determine the guilt or innocence of the defendant." WHEREFORE, the petition is hereby DISMISSED for lack of merit and the challenged orders of public respondent are AFFIRMED.

G.R. No. 170979 February 9, 2011 JUDITH YU, petitioner, vs. HON. ROSA SAMSON-TATAD, Presiding Judge, Regional Trial Court, Quezon City, Branch 105, and the PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. Facts: An information for estafa against petitioner Judith Yu was filed with the RTC and in a May 26, 2005 decision, the RTC convicted her as charged. On June 9, 2005, the petitioner filed a motion for new trial with the RTC, alleging that she discovered new and material evidence that would exculpate her of the crime for which she was convicted. It was denied. On November 16, 2005, the petitioner filed a notice of appeal with the RTC, alleging that pursuant to our ruling in Neypes v. Court of Appeals, she had a "fresh period" of 15 days from November 3, 2005, the receipt of the denial of her motion for new trial, or up to November 18, 2005, within which to file a notice of appeal. The prosecution filed a motion to dismiss the appeal for being filed 10 days late, arguing that Neypes is inapplicable to appeals in criminal cases. Issue: cases. Whether the "fresh period rule" enunciated in Neypes applies to appeals in criminal

Ruling: The right to appeal is not a constitutional, natural or inherent right it is a statutory privilege and of statutory origin and, therefore, available only if granted or as provided by statutes. It may be exercised only in the manner prescribed by the provisions of the law. The period to appeal is specifically governed by Section 39 of Batas Pambansa Blg. 129 (BP 129), as amended, Section 3 of Rule 41 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure, and Section 6 of Rule 122 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure. In Neypes, the Court modified the rule in civil cases on the counting of the 15-day period within which to appeal. The Court categorically set a fresh period of 15 days from a denial of a motion for reconsideration within which to appeal. Henceforth, this "fresh period rule" shall also apply to Rule 40 governing appeals from the Municipal Trial Courts to the Regional Trial Courts; Rule 42 on petitions for review from the Regional Trial Courts to the Court of Appeals; Rule 43 on appeals from quasi-judicial agencies to the Court of Appeals and Rule 45 governing appeals by certiorari to the Supreme Court. The new rule
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aims to regiment or make the appeal period uniform, to be counted from receipt of the order denying the motion for new trial, motion for reconsideration (whether full or partial) or any final order or resolution. The raison dtre for the "fresh period rule" is to standardize the appeal period provided in the Rules and do away with the confusion as to when the 15-day appeal period should be counted. Thus, the 15-day period to appeal is no longer interrupted by the filing of a motion for new trial or motion for reconsideration; litigants today need not concern themselves with counting the balance of the 15-day period to appeal since the 15-day period is now counted from receipt of the order dismissing a motion for new trial or motion for reconsideration or any final order or resolution. While Neypes involved the period to appeal in civil cases, the Courts pronouncement of a "fresh period" to appeal should equally apply to the period for appeal in criminal cases under Section 6 of Rule 122 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure. While the Court did not consider in Neypes the ordinary appeal period in criminal cases under Section 6, Rule 122 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure since it involved a purely civil case, it did include Rule 42 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure on petitions for review from the RTCs to the Court of Appeals (CA), and Rule 45 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure governing appeals by certiorari to this Court, both of which also apply to appeals in criminal cases, as provided by Section 3 of Rule 122 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, thus: SEC. 3. How appeal taken. x x x x (b) The appeal to the Court of Appeals in cases decided by the Regional Trial Court in the exercise of its appellate jurisdiction shall be by petition for review under Rule 42. Were we to strictly interpret the "fresh period rule" in Neypes and make it applicable only to the period to appeal in civil cases, we shall effectively foster and encourage an absurd situation where a litigant in a civil case will have a better right to appeal than an accused in a criminal case a situation that gives undue favor to civil litigants and unjustly discriminates against the accused-appellants. In light of these legal realities, we hold that the petitioner seasonably filed her notice of appeal on November 16, 2005, within the fresh period of 15 days, counted from November 3, 2005, the date of receipt of notice denying her motion for new trial. WHEREFORE, the petition for prohibition is hereby GRANTED. Respondent Judge Rosa Samson-Tatad is DIRECTED to CEASE and DESIST from further exercising jurisdiction over the prosecutions motions to dismiss appeal and for execution of the decision. The respondent Judge is also DIRECTED to give due course to the petitioners appeal in Criminal Case No. Q-01-105698, and to elevate the records of the case to the Court of Appeals for review of the appealed decision on the merits.

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G.R. No. 141524 September 14, 2005 DOMINGO NEYPES, LUZ FAUSTINO, ROGELIO FAUSTINO, LOLITO VICTORIANO, JACOB OBANIA AND DOMINGO CABACUNGAN, petitioners, vs. HON. COURT OF APPEALS, HEIRS OF BERNARDO DEL MUNDO, namely: FE, CORAZON, JOSEFA, SALVADOR and CARMEN, all surnamed DEL MUNDO, LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES AND HON. ANTONIO N. ROSALES, Presiding Judge, Branch 43, Regional Trial Court, Roxas, Oriental Mindoro, respondents. Facts: Petitioners filed an action for annulment of judgment and titles of land and/or reconveyance and/or reversion with preliminary injunction before the RTC against the private respondents. Later, in an order, the trial court dismissed petitioners complaint on the ground that the action had already prescribed. Petitioners allegedly received a copy of the order of dismissal on March 3, 1998 and, on the 15th day thereafter or on March 18, 1998, filed a motion for reconsideration. On July 1, 1998, the trial court issued another order dismissing the motion for reconsideration which petitioners received on July 22, 1998. Five days later, on July 27, 1998, petitioners filed a notice of appeal and paid the appeal fees on August 3, 1998. On August 4, 1998, the court a quo denied the notice of appeal, holding that it was filed eight days late. This was received by petitioners on July 31, 1998. Petitioners filed a motion for reconsideration but this too was denied in an order dated September 3, 1998. Via a petition for certiorari and mandamus under Rule 65, petitioners assailed the dismissal of the notice of appeal before the CA. In the appellate court, petitioners claimed that they had seasonably filed their notice of appeal. They argued that the 15-day reglementary period to appeal started to run only on July 22, 1998 since this was the day they received the final order of the trial court denying their motion for reconsideration. When they filed their notice of appeal on July 27, 1998, only five days had elapsed and they were well within the reglementary period for appeal. On September 16, 1999, the CA dismissed the petition. It ruled that the 15-day period to appeal should have been reckoned from March 3, 1998 or the day they received the February 12, 1998 order dismissing their complaint. According to the appellate court, the order was the final order appealable under the Rules. Issues: (1) Whether or not receipt of a final order triggers the start of the 15-day reglmentary period to appeal, the February 12, 1998 order dismissing the complaint or the July 1, 1998 order dismissing the Motion for Reconsideration. (2) Whether or not petitioners file their notice of appeal on time. Ruling; (1) The July 1, 1998 order dismissing the motion for reconsideration should be deemed as the final order. In the case of Quelnan v. VHF Philippines, Inc., the trial court declared petitioner non-suited and accordingly dismissed his complaint. Upon receipt of the order of dismissal, he filed an omnibus motion to set it aside. When the omnibus motion was filed, 12 days of the 15-day period to appeal the order had lapsed. He later on received another order, this time dismissing his omnibus motion. He then filed his notice of appeal.
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But this was likewise dismissed for having been filed out of time. The court a quo ruled that petitioner should have appealed within 15 days after the dismissal of his complaint since this was the final order that was appealable under the Rules. The SC reversed the trial court and declared that it was the denial of the motion for reconsideration of an order of dismissal of a complaint which constituted the final order as it was what ended the issues raised there. This pronouncement was reiterated in the more recent case of Apuyan v. Haldeman et al. where the SC again considered the order denying petitioners motion for reconsideration as the final order which finally disposed of the issues involved in the case. Based on the aforementioned cases, the SC sustained petitioners view that the order dated July 1, 1998 denying their motion for reconsideration was the final order contemplated in the Rules. (2) Yes. To standardize the appeal periods provided in the Rules and to afford litigants fair opportunity to appeal their cases, the Court deems it practical to allow a fresh period of 15 days within which to file the notice of appeal in the RTC, counted from receipt of the order dismissing a motion for a new trial or motion for reconsideration. Henceforth, this fresh period rule shall also apply to Rule 40, Rule 42, Rule 43 and Rule 45. The new rule aims to regiment or make the appeal period uniform, to be counted from receipt of the order denying the motion for new trial, motion for reconsideration (whether full or partial) or any final order or resolution. The SC thus held that petitioners seasonably filed their notice of appeal within the fresh period of 15 days, counted from July 22, 1998 (the date of receipt of notice denying their motion for reconsideration). This pronouncement is not inconsistent with Rule 41, Section 3 of the Rules which states that the appeal shall be taken within 15 days from notice of judgment or final order appealed from. The use of the disjunctive word or signifies disassociation and independence of one thing from another. It should, as a rule, be construed in the sense in which it ordinarily implies. Hence, the use of or in the above provision supposes that the notice of appeal may be filed within 15 days from the notice of judgment or within 15 days from notice of the final order, which we already determined to refer to the July 1, 1998 order denying the motion for a new trial or reconsideration. Neither does this new rule run counter to the spirit of Section 39 of BP 129 which shortened the appeal period from 30 days to 15 days to hasten the disposition of cases. The original period of appeal (in this case March 3-18, 1998) remains and the requirement for strict compliance still applies. The fresh period of 15 days becomes significant only when a party opts to file a motion for new trial or motion for reconsideration. In this manner, the trial court which rendered the assailed decision is given another opportunity to review the case and, in the process, minimize and/or rectify any error of judgment. While we aim to resolve cases with dispatch and to have judgments of courts become final at some definite time, we likewise aspire to deliver justice fairly. To recapitulate, a party litigant may either file his notice of appeal within 15 days from receipt of the RTCs decision or file it within 15 days from receipt of the order (the final order) denying his motion for new trial or motion for reconsideration. Obviously, the new 15-day period may be availed of only if either motion is filed; otherwise, the decision becomes final and executory after the lapse of the original appeal period provided in Rule 41, Section 3. Petitioners here filed their notice of appeal on July 27, 1998 or five days from receipt of the order denying their motion for reconsideration on July 22, 1998.
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Hence, the notice of appeal was well within the fresh appeal period of 15 days, as already discussed. WHEREFORE, the petition is hereby GRANTED and the assailed decision of the Court of Appeals REVERSED and SET ASIDE. Accordingly, let the records of this case be remanded to the Court of Appeals for further proceedings. G.R. No. 141986 July 11, 2002 NEPLUM, INC., petitioner, vs. EVELYN V. ORBESO, respondent. Facts: On 29 October 1999, the trial court promulgated its judgment in Criminal Case No. 96-246 acquitting the accused of the crime of estafa on the ground that the prosecution failed to prove the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt. The accused and her counsel as well as the public and private prosecutors were present during such promulgation. The private prosecutor represented the interests of the petitioner who was the private offended party in Criminal Case No. 96-246. On 12 November 1999, the petitioner, through the private prosecutor, received its copy of the Judgment. On 29 November 1999, petitioner filed its 25 November 1999 Motion for Reconsideration (Civil Aspect) of the Judgment. Considering that 27 November 1999 was a Saturday, petitioner filed its Motion for Reconsideration on 29 November 1999, a Monday. On 28 January 2000, a Friday, petitioner received its copy of the 24 January 2000 Order of the Trial Court denying for lack of merit petitioners Motion for Reconsideration. On 31 January 2000, a Monday, petitioner filed its 28 January 2000 Notice of Appeal from the Judgment. On the same day, petitioner filed by registered mail its 28 January 2000 Amended Notice of Appeal. On 17 February 2000, the Trial Court issued its Challenged Order, which petitioner received through the private prosecutor on 22 February 2000, denying due course to petitioners Notice of Appeal and Amended Notice of Appeal. Issue: Whether the period within which a private offended party may appeal from, or move for a reconsideration of, or otherwise challenge, the civil aspect of a judgment in a criminal action should be reckoned from the date of promulgation or from the date of such partys actual receipt of a copy of such judgment considering that any party appealing or challenging such judgment would necessarily need a copy thereof, which is in writing and which clearly express the factual and legal bases thereof to be able to file an intelligent appeal or other challenge. Ruling: Petitioner contends that an appeal by the private offended party under the Rules of Criminal Procedure must be made within 15 days from the time the appealing party receives a copy of the relevant judgment. It cites Section 6, Rule 122 of the 1985 Rules on Criminal Procedure, which provides: SEC. 6. When appeal to be taken. An appeal must be taken within fifteen (15) days from promulgation or notice of the judgment or order
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appealed from. This period for perfecting an appeal shall be interrupted from the time a motion for new trial or reconsideration is filed until notice of the order overruling the motion shall have been served upon the accused or his counsel. The italicized portion of the provision uses the conjunctive or in providing for the reckoning period within which an appeal must be taken. It shall be counted from the promulgation or the notice of the judgment or order. Had it been the accused who appealed, we could have easily ruled that the reckoning period for filing an appeal be counted from the promulgation of the judgment. InPeople v. Tamani, the Court was confronted with the question of when to count the period within which the accused must appeal the criminal conviction. Answered the Court: The assumption that the fifteen-day period should be counted from February 25, 1963, when a copy of the decision was allegedly served on appellants counsel by registered mail is not well-taken. The word promulgation in section 6 should be construed as referring to judgment, while the word notice should be construed as referring to order. The interpretation in that case was very clear. The period for appeal was to be counted from the date of promulgation of the decision. In an earlier case, this Court explained the same interpretation in this wise: It may, therefore, be stated that one who desires to appeal in a criminal case must file a notice to that effect within fifteen days from the date the decision is announced or promulgated to the defendant. And this can be done by the court either by announcing the judgment in open court as was done in this case, or by promulgating the judgment in the manner set forth in [S]ection 6, Rule 116 of the Rules of Court. Clear as those interpretations may have been, they cannot be applied to the case at bar, because in those instances it was the accused who appealed, while here we are confronted with the offended partys appeal of the civil aspect only. Thus, the question arises whether the accused-appellants period for appeal, as construed in the cited cases, is the same as that for the private offended party. The Court answer in the negative. Section 6 of Rule 122 of the 2000 Rules on Criminal Procedure declares: Section 6. When appeal to be taken. An appeal must be taken within fifteen (15) days from promulgation of the judgment or from notice of the final order appealed from. This period for perfecting an appeal shall be suspended from the time a motion for new trial or reconsideration is filed until notice of the order overruling the motions has been served upon the accused or his counsel at which time the balance of the period begins to run. This provision is similar, though not identical, to Section 6 of Rule 122 of the 1985 Rules invoked by petitioner. The difference is that the former makes clear that promulgation refers to judgment, and notice refers to final order appealed from. Taken on its face, the provision seems to suggest that the period for any appeal, whether by the accused or by the private offended party, must be counted from and understood in conjunction with the provision on the promulgation of the judgment. This provision mentions the presence of the accused, the judge or the clerk of court in certain instances, and/or the counsel or representative of the accused. Petitioner is correct in
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observing that the private offended party is not required to be present during the promulgation; in fact, the said party is not even mentioned in the provision. Appeal of the Accused Different from That of the Offended Party Clearly, the Rule on the promulgation of judgment refers to the accused, not to the private offended party, who is not even required to be present during the proceedings. Since the judgment may be promulgated in the absence of the latter, it will be inequitable to count from that date the period of appeal for the said party. It is but logical to begin tolling such period only upon service of the notice of judgment upon the offended party, and not from its promulgation to the accused. It is only through notice to the former that an appeal can reasonably be made, for it is only from that date that the complainant will have knowledge of the need to elevate the case. Till then, the remedy of appeal would not be an option in the event of an adverse judgment. The court clarify also that the situations covered by this Rule (Section 6, Rule 122) are limited to appeals of judgments rendered by regional trial and inferior courts. In higher courts, there is no promulgation in the concept of Section 6 Rule 122 of the 2000 Rules on Criminal Procedure. In the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals, a decision is promulgated when the signed copy thereof is filed with the clerk of court, who then causes copies to be served upon the parties or their counsels. Hence, the presence of either party during promulgation is not required. The period to appeal, embodied in Section 6 of Rule 122 of the Rules on Criminal Procedure, cannot be applied equally to both accused-appellant and private offended party. Further bolstering this argument is the second sentence of this provision which mandates as follows: x x x. This period for perfecting an appeal shall be suspended from the time a motion for new trial or reconsideration is filed until notice of the order overruling the motions has been served upon the accused or his counsel at which time the balance of the period begins to run. The above-quoted portion provides for the procedure for suspending and resuming the reglementary period of appeal specifically mentioned in the preceding sentence. However, it is clear that the procedure operates only in relation to the accused. This conclusion can be deduced from the fact that after being interrupted, the period to appeal begins to run again only after the accused or the counsel of the accused is given notice of the order overruling the motion for reconsideration or for new trial. Verily, the assumption behind this provision is that the appeal was taken by the accused, not by the private offended party. Indeed, the rules governing the period of appeal in a purely civil action should be the same as those covering the civil aspects of criminal judgments. If these rules are not completely identical, the former may be suppletory to the latter. As correctly pointed out by petitioner, [t]he appeal from the civil aspect of a judgment in a criminal action is, for all intents and purposes, an appeal from a judgment in a civil action as such appeal cannot affect the criminal aspect thereof. Being akin to a civil action, the present appeal may be guided by the Rules on Civil Procedure. In People v. Santiago, the Court has definitively ruled that in a criminal case in which the offended party is the State, the interest of the private complainant or the private
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offended party is limited to the civil liability arising therefrom. If a criminal case is dismissed by the trial court or if there is an acquittal, an appeal of the criminal aspect may be undertaken, whenever legally feasible, only by the State through the solicitor general. As a rule, only the solicitor general may represent the People of the Philippines on appeal. The private offended party or complainant may not undertake such appeal. However, the offended party or complainant may appeal the civil aspect despite the acquittal of the accused. As such, the present appeal undertaken by the private offended party relating to the civil aspect of the criminal judgment can no longer be considered a criminal action per se, wherein the State prosecutes a person for an act or omission punishable by law. Instead, it becomes a suit analogous to a civil action. Being in the nature of a civil case, the present intended appeal involves proceedings brought to the Court of Appeals from a decision of the RTC in the exercise of the latters original jurisdiction. Thus, it should be properly done by filing a notice of appeal. An appeal by virtue of such notice shall be filed within 15 days from notice of the judgment or final order appealed from. For the private offended party, this rule then forecloses the counting of the period to appeal from the promulgation of the judgment to the accused. General Rule Not Applicable to the Present Case Having been present during the promulgation and having been furnished a copy of the judgment at the time, private offended party was in effect actually notified of the Judgment, and from that time already had knowledge of the need to appeal it. Thus, the very raison d'tre of this Decision is already satisfied: the filing of an appeal by the said party, only after being notified of the Judgment. Petitioner stresses the need for service of the Judgment on the offended party. It harps on the fact that -- based on constitutional, statutory and even jurisprudential edicts -judgments must be in writing and with the factual and legal bases thereof clearly expressed. The court clarifies. If petitioner or its counsel had never been notified of the Judgment, then the period for appeal would never have run. True, no law requires the offended party to attend the promulgation, much less to secure a copy of the decision on that date. But fiction must yield to reality. By mere presence, the offended party was already actually notified of the Decision of acquittal and should have taken the necessary steps to ensure that a timely appeal be filed. Appeal Not Part of Due Process It should be stressed that the right to appeal is neither a natural right nor a part of due process. It is merely a procedural remedy of statutory origin and may be exercised only in the manner prescribed by the provisions of law authorizing its exercise. Hence, its requirements must be strictly complied with. The failure of petitioner to file a timely notice of appeal from the Judgment, thus rendering the Judgment final and executory, is not a denial of due process. It might have lost its right to appeal, but it was not denied its day in court. WHEREFORE, the Petition is hereby DENIED and the assailed Order AFFIRMED. Costs against petitioner.

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G.R. No. 125306 December 11, 2000 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. CAFGU FRANCISCO BALTAR, JR., CAFGU PRIMO VILLANUEVA alias ESPOK and ROLLY BALTAR, accused, CAFGU PRIMO VILLANUEVA alias ESPOK, accused-appellant. Facts: Accused-appellant Primo Villanueva alias Espok seeks the reversal of the decision of the Regional Trial Court together with co-accused, Francisco Baltar, Jr. and Rolly Baltar, he was convicted of murder and sentenced to reclusion perpetua. Francisco Baltar, Jr. and Rolly Baltar did not appeal the case. Issue: Whether or not appeal taken by one or more of several accused shall affect those who did not appeal. Ruling: The provisions of the Rules of Court on criminal procedure have been amended. Sec. 11, Rule 122 now reads: SEC. 11. Effect of appeal by any of several accused. (a) An appeal taken by one or more of several accused shall not affect those who did not appeal, except insofar as the judgment of the appellate court is favorable and applicable to the latter. (b) The civil appeal of the offended party shall not affect the criminal aspect of the judgment or order appealed from; (c) Upon the perfection of the appeal, the execution of the judgment or order appealed from shall be stayed as to the appealing party. Thus, at present, the accused who did not appeal may be benefited by the judgment of the appellate court insofar as it is favorable and applicable to him. This amendment modifies the former case law aforecited. With the modification of the judgment from murder to homicide in this case, it follows that the two other accused who did not appeal should benefit from the reduction of the sentence imposed on the crime committed. WHEREFORE, the instant appeal is partially GRANTED.

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G.R. No. 147524 June 20, 2006 SEGUNDO S. LIM, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS, HON. SIMEON P. DUMDUM, JR., Presiding Judge, Regional Trial Court, Branch 7, Cebu City, THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, and CIRSE CHOY TORRALBA, respondents. Facts: The criminal case for libel was filed by private respondent Cirse Choy Torralba after petitioner caused the publication of records of criminal cases filed against Torralba, including photographs of his arrest, through a onepage advertisement paid for by petitioner in the Sunday Post, a weekly publication edited and published by petitioners co-accused, Boy BG Guingguing. On appeal, the Court of Appeals (CA) affirmed the conviction. Petitioner filed a petition for review with the Court docketed as G.R. No. 126701 but this was denied in a Resolution dated December 4, 1996 due to petitioners failure to comply with Revised Circular No. 1-88 in that the petition did not contain a certified true copy of the resolution denying petitioners motion for reconsideration. Said resolution became final and executory and entry of judgment was made on March 20, 1997. Meanwhile, petitioners co-accused, Boy BG Guingguing, filed with the Court a petition for review dated April 4, 1997, docketed as G.R. No. 128959, and entitled Ciriaco Boy Guingguing v. The Honorable Court of Appeals and the People of the Philippines. Thereafter, in an Order dated May 26, 2000, the trial court granted a motion filed by the private prosecutor praying for the promulgation of the judgment of conviction against petitioner. Promulgation was set on June 6, 2000. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration but this was denied by the trial court. Petitioner asserts that his co-accused Guingguings petition before the Court (G.R. No. 128959) is still pending resolution and considering that their respective liabilities are interwoven, prudence dictates that a final decision by the Court in G.R. No. 128959 should be awaited. Issue: Whether or not appeal taken by one or more of several accused shall affect those who did not appeal. Ruling: As earlier stated, both petitioner and the OSG laterally argue that in the event of Guingguings acquittal, petitioner should likewise be acquitted, based on Rule 122, Section 11(a) of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, as amended, which states: SEC. 11. Effect of appeal by any of several accused. (a) An appeal taken by one or more of several accused shall not affect those who did not appeal, except insofar as the judgment of the appellate court is favorable and applicable to the latter. Private respondent however, contends that said provision is not applicable to petitioner inasmuch as he appealed from his conviction, and the provision states that a favorable judgment shall be applicable only to those who did not appeal. A literal
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interpretation of the phrase did not appeal, as espoused by private respondent, will not give justice to the purpose of the provision. It should be read in its entirety and should not be myopically construed so as to defeat its reason, i.e., to benefit an accused who did not join in the appeal of his co-accused in case where the appellate judgment is favorable. In fact, several cases rendered by the Court applied the foregoing provision without regard as to the filing or non-filing of an appeal by a co-accused, so long as the judgment was favorable to him. In People v. Artellero, the Court extended the acquittal of Rodriguezs co-accused to him despite the withdrawal of his appeal, applying the Rule 122, Section 11(a), and considering that the evidence against both are inextricably linked, to wit: Although it is only appellant who persisted with the present appeal, the wellestablished rule is that an appeal in a criminal proceeding throws the whole case open for review of all its aspects, including those not raised by the parties. The records show that Rodriguez had withdrawn his appeal due to financial reasons. However, Section 11 (a) of Rule 122 of the Rules of Court provides that [a]n appeal taken by one or more [of] several accused shall not affect those who did not appeal, except insofar as the judgment of the appellant court is favorable and applicable to the latter. As we have elucidated, the evidence against and the conviction of both appellant and Rodriguez are inextricably linked. Hence, appellants acquittal, which is favorable and applicable to Rodriguez, should benefit the latter. In People v. Arondain, the Court found accused Arondain guilty only of homicide. Such verdict was applied to his co-accused, Jose Precioso, who was previously found guilty by the trial court of robbery with homicide, despite the fact that Precioso appealed but failed to file an appellants brief. The Court also modified Preciosos civil liability although the additional monetary award imposed on Arondain was not extended to Precioso since it was not favorable to him and he did not pursue the appeal before the Court. In People v. De Lara, Eduardo Villas, together with several co-accused, were found by the trial court guilty of forcible abduction. During pendency of the review before the Court, Villas withdrew his appeal, hence his conviction became final and executory. Thereafter, the Court found Villas co-accused guilty only of grave coercion. Applying Rule 122, Section 11(a), the Court also found Villas guilty of the lesser offense of grave coercion since it is beneficial to him. In the foregoing cases, all the accused appealed from their judgments of conviction but for one reason or another, the conviction became final and executory. Nevertheless, the Court still applied to them the favorable judgment in favor of their co-accused. The Court notes that the Decision dated September 30, 2005 in G.R. No. 128959 stated, the verdict of guilt with respect to Lim [herein petitioner] had already become final and executory. In any event, the Court cannot see why a different treatment should be given to petitioner, given that the judgment is favorable to him and considering further that the Courts findin g in its Decision dated September 30, 2005 specifically stated that the publication of the subject advertisement by petitioner and Lim cannot be deemed by this Court to have been done with actual malice.
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People vs. Ulit 423 SCRA 374


Facts: Criminal Case No. 97-385 Crime committed on November 1996 (same facts) Criminal Case No. 97-386 Crime committed on February 1997 (same facts) Criminal Case No. 97-387 Crime committed on December 1996 (same facts)

Criminal Case No. 97-388 On or about the 2nd day of March 1997, in the City of Makati, Metro Manila, Philippines, a place within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused, with lewd design by means of force, violence and intimidation, did then and there willfully, unlawfully and feloniously commit acts of lasciviousness upon complainant LUCELLE SERRANO y ULIT, an eleven (11) year old girl, by then and there dragging her inside a bathroom and repeatedly kissing her on her checks, without her consent and against her will, to her damage and prejudice. The appellant, assisted by counsel, pleaded not guilty during the arraignment. Joint trial of all the cases ensued. The trial was reset to June 2 and 9, 1997. When trial resumed on June 9, 1997, Lucelle was questioned by the prosecution on direct examination, but still, she gave no answer. She cried profusely in open court. When asked by the court if she wanted to proceed with the trial, she remained silent. The trial was reset anew to July 9 and 14, 1997. The trial court ordered that Lucelle be subjected to physical and psychological examinations at the National Center for Mental Health (NCMH).Based on clinical history, mental status examination and psychological evaluation, this patient is suffering from PostTraumatic Stress Disorder. During the trial on July 14, 1997, Lucelle refused to take the witness stand. The trial was reset to July 21, 1997. During the hearing on October 20, 1997, the prosecution presented Lucelle anew to continue with her testimony on direct examination. She declared that the appellant raped her in November 1996 and many other times thereafter in her residence at No. 7104 San Maximo Street, Makati City. Instead of asking questions to elicit the facts and circumstances before and during the commission of the crimes, the prosecutor asked Lucelle to identify her signature in her sworn statement and to affirm the truth of its contents. She did so. In her sworn statement, Lucelle alleged that sometime in November 1996, she was sleeping in a room in the house. It was about 6 oclock in the evening. She was awakened when she felt someone kissing her on the cheek. When she opened her eyes, she saw her uncle, the appellant, armed with a bladed weapon (balisong). He poked the weapon on the left side of her neck. He warned her that if she told her parents, he would kill her. He removed her panties, undressed himself and mounted her. He then inserted his penis into her vagina. She felt pain in her private part and cried. The appellant, thereafter, left the room. Also during the month of November 1996, the appellant continued kissing her whenever her parents were out of the house. The appellants counsel, objected to the admissibility of Lucelles sworn statement on the ground that she was incompetent to give the same because of her mental illness. The trial court admitted the sworn statement of Lucelle in evidence as part of her testimony. After the prosecution had rested its case, the trial court reset the hearing to November 5, 1997 for the appellant to adduce his evidence. When the case was called for trial on that date, his counsel manifested to the court that the appellant was changing his plea in
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Criminal Cases Nos. 97-385 and 97-387 from not guilty to guilty. He also manifested that he would no longer adduce any evidence in his defense in Criminal Cases Nos. 97-386 and 97-388 because the prosecution failed to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt for the crimes charged therein. The trial court suspended the proceedings and gave the appellant forty-five minutes to confer with his counsel. When trial resumed, the appellant reiterated his earlier manifestation. When told by the court that he could be sentenced to death for the rape charges, the appellant stood pat on his decision to plead guilty in Criminal Cases Nos. 97-385 and 97-387, and to no longer present any evidence in his defense in the other two cases. The appellant was re-arraigned in Criminal Cases Nos. 97385 and 97-387 with the assistance of the same counsel and entered his plea of guilty to the charges. On December 15, 1997, the trial court rendered judgment convicting the appellant of all the crimes charged. The trial court declared that even prescinding from the appellants plea of guilty, the prosecutor adduced proof beyond reasonable doubt of the guilt of the appellant for qualified rape in Criminal Cases Nos. 97-385 and 97-386. The trial court ruled that although Lucelle did not testify on the contents of her sworn statement, the same were admissible in evidence as part of the res gestae. The appellant did not appeal from the decision in Criminal Cases Nos. 97-387 and 97-388. In view of the trial courts imposition of the death penalty on the appellant in Criminal Cases Nos. 97-385 and 97-386, the said cases were brought to this Court on automatic appeal.
Issue: Whether or not the trial court erred in sentencing the accused feliciano ulit with a death penalty despite his admission of guilt. Ruling:

The appellant does not contest his conviction for rape in Criminal Cases Nos. 97-385 and 97-386, and the validity of the proceedings in the said cases in the trial court. He pleads, however, that he be spared the death penalty. He asserts that he was so remorseful for the crimes he committed and that he pleaded guilty in Criminal Cases Nos. 97-385 and 97-387; he no longer presented any evidence in Criminal Case No. 97-388 so that the proceedings before the court would be shortened and simplified. Nevertheless, the appeal in a criminal case is a review de novo and the court is not limited to the assigned errors. An appeal thus opens the whole case for review, and the appellate tribunal may consider and correct errors though unassigned and even reverse the decision of the trial court on the grounds other than those the parties raised as errors. As a rule, this Court has set aside convictions based on pleas of guilty in capital offenses because of the improvidence thereof, and when such plea is the sole basis of the condemnatory judgment. However, where the trial court receives, independently of his plea of guilty, evidence to determine whether the accused committed the crimes charged and the precise degree of his criminal culpability therefore, he may still be convicted if there is ample proof on record, not contingent on the plea of guilty, on which to predicate conviction. In this case, the prosecution had already rested its case when the appellant decided to change his plea. In fact, the trial court granted the prosecutions motion that the evidence it had presented be considered proof of the degree of culpability of the appellant. It is, thus,
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incumbent upon this Court to determine whether the evidence adduced by the prosecution in Criminal Case No. 97-385 is sufficient to establish beyond reasonable doubt the appellants guilt for qualified rape. WHEREFORE, the Decision of the Regional Trial Court of Makati City, Branch 62, in Criminal Cases Nos. 97-385 to 97-388 is AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION. The appellant Feliciano Ulit y Tampoy is found GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt of two counts of rape in Criminal Cases Nos. 97-385 and 97-386, and in each case, is hereby sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua and ordered to pay the victim, Lucelle Serrano, P50,000 as moral damages; P50,000 as civil indemnity; and P25,000 as exemplary damages. Costs de oficio. PHILIPPINE RABBIT BUS LINES, INC., petitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondent. G.R. No. 147703. April 14, 2004
Facts:

Napoleon Roman y Macadangdang was found guilty and convicted of the crime of reckless imprudence resulting to triple homicide, multiple physical injuries and damage to property on July 27, 1994 and was sentenced to suffer the penalty of four (4) years, nine (9) months and eleven (1) days to six (6) years, and to pay damages. The court further ruled that petitioner, in the event of the insolvency of accused, shall be liable for the civil liabilities of the accused. Evidently, the judgment against accused had become final and executory. Admittedly, accused had jumped bail and remained at-large. It is worth mentioning that Section 8, Rule 124 of the Rules of Court authorizes the dismissal of appeal when appellant jumps bail. Counsel for accused, also admittedly hired and provided by petitioner, filed a notice of appeal which was denied by the trial court. We affirmed the denial of the notice of appeal filed in behalf of accused. Simultaneously, on August 6, 1994, Petitioner filed its notice of appeal from the judgment of the trial court. On April 29, 1997, the trial court gave due course to petitioners notice of appeal. On December 8, 1998, he filed its brief. On December 9, 1998, the Office of the Solicitor General received a copy of petitioners brief. On January 8, 1999, the OSG moved to be excused from filing respondents brief on the ground that the OSGs authority to represent people is confined to criminal cases on appeal. The motion was however denied per our resolution of May 31, 1999. On March 2, 1999, respondent/private prosecutor filed the instant motion to dismiss.
Issue: finality. Whether or not the judgment of conviction against the accused-employee has attained

Ruling:

In the case before us, the accused-employee has escaped and refused to surrender to the proper authorities; thus, he is deemed to have abandoned his appeal. Consequently, the judgment against him has become final and executory
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Well-established in our jurisdiction is the principle that the appellate court may, upon motion or motu proprio, dismiss an appeal during its pendency if the accused jumps bail. The second paragraph of Section 8 of Rule 124 of the 2000 Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure provides: The Court of Appeals may also, upon motion of the appellee or motu proprio, dismiss the appeal if the appellant escapes from prison or confinement, jumps bail or flees to a foreign country during the pendency of the appeal. This rule is based on the rationale that appellants lose their standing in court when they abscond. Unless they surrender or submit to the courts jurisdiction, they are deemed to have waived their right to seek judicial relief. Moreover, this doctrine applies not only to the accused who jumps bail during the appeal, but also to one who does so during the trial. The accused cannot be accorded the right to appeal unless they voluntarily submit to the jurisdiction of the court or are otherwise arrested within 15 days from notice of the judgment against them. While at large, they cannot seek relief from the court, as they are deemed to have waived the appeal. WHEREFORE, the Petition is hereby DENIED, and the assailed Resolutions AFFIRMED. Costs against petitioner. SPS. NESTOR and FELICIDAD DADIZON, petitioners, vs. HON. COURT OF APPEALS, and SPS. DOMINADOR and ELSA MOCORRO, respondents. G.R. No. 159116 September 30, 2009
Facts:

On June 2, 1973, Caneja, Sr. sold the land to the Mocorros. Thus, Caneja, Sr.s Tax Declaration No. 4301 was cancelled and Tax Declaration No. 4518 was issued in the name of Dominador Mocorro.4 In 1984, as borne out in Tax Declaration No. 607, the area of 224 square meters was reduced by 78 square meters to only 146 square meters. It is not denied that the Dadizons were issued their own tax declaration for the first time only in 1980, through Tax Declaration No. 535 in the name of Felicidad Dadizon, covering an area of 147 square meters. Based on the tax declarations, the area of the land of the Mocorros had always been 224 square meters until 1984, when the area was reduced to 146 square meters following the exclusion of a part thereof measuring 78 square meters to adjust the area to that declared in the name of the Dadizons in Tax Declaration No. 535 In 1979, Tax Declaration No. 4518 was superseded by Tax Declaration No. 3478, still covering the same area of 224 square meters. It is relevant to mention that Tax Declaration No. 3478 carried an annotation of the mortgage on the land constituted by the Mocorros in favor of the Rural Bank of Naval on July 23, 1975. The Dadizons filed a notice of appeal. Initially, the CA required the Dadizons to file their appellants brief. Later on, however, the Mocorros moved to dismiss the Dadizons appeal on the ground that the mode of appeal they had adopted was erroneous. Hence, the Dadizons have come to this Court to assail the dismissal of their appeal and the denial of their motion for reconsideration.
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Issue:

Whether or not the mode of appeal adopted by the petitioner was erroneous.

Ruling:

The mode of appeal vis--vis the decision of the RTC adopted by the Dadizons was undoubtedly wrong. They should have filed a petition for review in accordance with Rule 42, Rules of Court, which was the correct mode of appeal, considering that the RTC had rendered the decision in question in the exercise of its appellate jurisdiction. The error of the Dadizons was inexcusable and inexplicable. The Court has followed a strict policy against misdirected or erroneous appeals since February 27, 1990, when it issued. In fine, if an appeal is essayed to either court by the wrong procedure, the only course of action open is to dismiss the appeal. In other words, if an appeal is attempted from a judgment of a Regional Trial Court by notice of appeal, that appeal can and should never go to the Supreme Court, regardless of any statement in the notice that the court of choice is the Supreme Court; and more than once has this Court admonished a Trial Judge and/or his Clerk of Court, as well as the attorney taking the appeal, for causing the records to be sent up to this Court in such a case. Again, if an appeal by notice of appeal is taken from the Regional Trial Court to the Court of Appeals and in the latter Court, the appellant raises naught but issues of law, the appeal should be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. And finally, it may be stressed once more, it is only through petitions for review on certiorari that the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court may properly be invoked. WHEREFORE, we affirm the resolution dated February 26, 2003 and the resolution dated June 30, 2003 issued in CA-G.R. C.V. No. 71649. The petitioners shall pay the costs of suit. IRENORIO B. BALABA, petitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondent. G.R. No. 169519 July 17, 2009
Facts:

On or about October 19, 1993, in the Municipality of Guindulman, Bohol, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the said accused, Assistant Municipal Treasurer of Guindulman, Bohol and accountable public officer for the funds collected and received by virtue of his position, willfully, unlawfully and feloniously misappropriate, embezzle and take away from said funds, the total amount of P114,186.34, which he converted to his personal use and benefit, to the damage and prejudice of the government. During his arraignment on 17 May 1996, Balaba entered a plea of not guilty. Trial soon followed. On 9 December 2002, the trial court found Balaba guilty. On 14 January 2003, Balaba filed his Notice of Appeal, where he indicated that he would file his appeal before the Court of Appeals. On 6 August 2003, Balaba filed his Appellants Brief. The Office of the Solicitor General, instead of filing an Appellees Brief, filed a Manifestation and Motion praying for the dismissal of the appeal for being improper since the Sandiganbayan has exclusive jurisdiction over the appeal.

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In its 15 December 2004 Decision, the Court of Appeals dismissed Balabas appeal. On 27 January 2005, Balaba filed a Motion for Reconsideration and asked. In its 24 August 2005 Resolution, the Court of Appeals denied Balabas motion.
Issue: Whether or not the court of appeals erred in dismissing his appeal instead of certifying the case to the proper court. Ruling:

An error in designating the appellate court is not fatal to the appeal. However, the correction in designating the proper appellate court should be made within the 15-day period to appeal. Once made within the said period, the designation of the correct appellate court may be allowed even if the records of the case are forwarded to the Court of Appeals. Otherwise, the second paragraph of Section 2, Rule 50 of the Rules of court would apply. The second paragraph of Section 2, Rule 50 of the Rules of Court reads: "An appeal erroneously taken to the Court of Appeals shall not be transferred to the appropriate court but shall be dismissed outright." Balaba sought the correction of the error in filing the appeal only after the expiration of the period to appeal. The trial court promulgated its Decision on 9 December 2002. Balaba filed his notice of appeal on 14 January 2003. The Court of Appeals issued the Decision declaring its lack of jurisdiction on 15 December 2004. Balaba tried to correct the error only on 27 January 2005, clearly beyond the 15-day period to appeal from the decision of the trial court. Therefore, the Court of Appeals did not commit any error when it dismissed Balabas appeal because of lack of jurisdiction. WHEREFORE, we DENY the petition. We AFFIRM the 15 December 2004 Decision and 24 August 2005 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. CR No. 27178. EDGARDO V. ESTARIJA, petitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, represented by the SOLICITOR GENERAL, and EDWARD RANADA, respondents. G.R. No. 173990 October 27, 2009
Facts:

On or about August 6, 1998, in the City of Davao, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused, EDGARDO ESTARIJA, a public officer, being then the Harbor Master of the Philippine Ports Authority at Sasa, Davao City, while in the performance of his official function as such, did then and there, willfully, unlawfully and feloniously request and consequently receive the amount of FIVE THOUSAND PESOS (P5,000.00) from Davao Pilot Association in consideration of accuseds issuance of berthing permits. Upon his arraignment on 26 August 1998, Estarija, assisted by a counsel de parte, pleaded not guilty to the charge. Thereafter, trial on the merits ensued. RTC rendered a decision convicting Estarija of the crime charged and imposing upon him a straight penalty of seven years on March 15, 2000. For the foregoing, this Court finds
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accused Capt. Edgardo Estarija GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt of violating Par. B, Sec. 3 of Republic Act 3019, otherwise known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Estarija filed a motion for reconsideration, which was denied by the RTC. On 10 August 2000, Estarija filed a notice of appeal.
Issue: Whether or not the court of appeals had appellate jurisdiction over the rtc decision convicting estarija of the charge. Ruling:

The Sandiganbayan shall exercise exclusive appellate jurisdiction over final judgments, resolutions or orders of regional trial courts whether in the exercise of their own original jurisdiction or of their appellate jurisdiction as herein provided. Time and again, it has been held that the right to appeal is not a natural right or a part of due process, but merely a statutory privilege and may be exercised only in the manner and in accordance with the provisions of the law. The party who seeks to avail himself of the same must comply with the requirements of the rules, failing in which the right to appeal is lost. Having failed to comply with the requirements set forth in the rules, Estarij as appeal should have been dismissed by the Court of Appeals. Instead of appealing his conviction to the Sandiganbayan, Estarija erroneously filed an appeal with the Court of Appeals, in utter disregard of paragraph 3, Section 4(c) of Republic Act No. 8249. The Court of Appeals did not notice this conspicuous misstep, since it entertained the appeal. This fatal flaw committed by Estarija did not toll the running of the period for him to perfect his appeal to the Sandiganbayan. Because of Estarijas failure to perfect his appeal to the Sandiganbayan within the period granted therefor, the Decision of the RTC convicting him of violating Section 3(a) of Republic Act No. 3019 has thus become final and executory. Inasmuch as the decision of the RTC has long been final and executory, it can no longer be altered or modified. Nothing is more settled in law than that when a judgment becomes final and executory, it becomes immutable and unalterable. The same may no longer be modified in any respect, even if the modification is meant to correct what is perceived to be an erroneous conclusion of fact or law, and whether or not made by the highest court of the land. The reason is grounded on the fundamental considerations of public policy and sound practice that, at the risk of occasional error, the judgments or orders of courts must be final at some definite date fixed by law. WHEREFORE, premises considered, the instant petition is DENIED. The Decision of the Regional Trial Court of Davao City, Branch 8, dated 15 March 2000, finding Edgardo V. Estarija GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt of violating Section 3(b) of Republic Act No. 3019 is declared FINAL and EXECUTORY.

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FILOMENA L. VILLANUEVA, petitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondent. G.R. No. 188630 February 23, 2011
Facts:

On various dates in 1998, the petitioner and her husband Armando Villanueva obtained several loans from the Cagayan Agri-Based Multi-Purpose Cooperative, Inc. (CABMPCI). Armando defaulted in the payment of his own loan. Because of this, CABMPCI, represented by its General Manager, Petra Martinez (Martinez), filed a civil case for collection of sum of money against Armando before the Regional Trial Court of Sanchez Mira, Cagayan (RTC), docketed as Civil Case No. 2607-S. To support its claim, CABMPCI presented a certification, received and signed by petitioner, attesting that she and Armando promised to settle their obligation on or before February 28, 2001. During the pendency of the civil case before the RTC, Martinez filed an administrative complaint for Willful Failure to Pay Just Debt against petitioner before the CDA. It was docketed as CDA-Administrative Case No. 2002-002. On October 16, 2001, in Civil Case No. 2607-S, the trial court declared Armando in default and rendered a decision ordering him to pay the total amount of P1,107,210.90, plus fine and interest at the rate of 3% per month and the cost of collection. Armando filed a petition for prohibition before the CA alleging that he should not be made to pay said loan as the same had long been fully paid. When directed to file its comment, CABMPCI failed to comply. Its non-compliance was deemed to have been a waiver to refute the claim of payment contained in the petition. Thus, on October 30, 2002, the CA promulgated a decision nullifying the RTC decision on the ground that the obligation had already been settled. On December 9, 2002, Martinez filed an administrative case with the Office of the Ombudsman (Ombudsman)charging petitioner with Violation of Section 7(d) in relation to Section 11 of Republic Act (R.A.) No. 6713. In the end, the Ombudsman rendered a decision finding petitioner guilty of Grave Misconduct and imposed the penalty of dismissal with forfeiture of benefits and disqualification for re-employment in the government service. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration but the Ombudsman denied it. The CA found merit in the petition and reversed and set aside the assailed decision of the Ombudsman. The CA ruled that the Ombudsman erred in applying R.A. No. 6713, without recognizing the fact of membership and its privileges. It further stated that Martinez failed to prove that petitioner had used undue influence in soliciting the loan. Martinez filed a motion for reconsideration while the Ombudsman filed an Omnibus Motion to Intervene and For Reconsideration. The CA denied both motions in its August 8, 2005 Resolution. Aside from those cases, a criminal case was also filed against the petitioner for violation of Section 2(d) of R.A. No. 6713 before the Municipal Circuit Trial Court of Claveria, Cagayan (MCTC), docketed as Criminal Case No. 3111-CL. On March 24, 2006, the MCTC promulgated its decision in Criminal Case No. 3111CL convicting the petitioner and imposing the penalty of five (5) years of imprisonment and disqualification to hold office (Section 11, R.A. No. 6713).

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Petitioner appealed the MCTC Decision to the Regional Trial Court of Sanchez Mira, Cagayan (RTC). The case was docketed as Criminal Case No. 3082. On November 22, 2007, the RTC affirmed the MCTC Decision. Aggrieved, petitioner filed a petition for review before the CA. The Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) then filed a Manifestation and Motion contending that the Sandiganbayan had exclusive appellate jurisdiction over the petition. Petitioner, in her Comment, argued that the issue of jurisdiction could not be raised for the first time before the CA in view of the failure of the Provincial Prosecutor to bring out the same when she appealed the MCTC Decision to the RTC. She claimed to have availed of the remedy provided under Rule 122 of the Rules of Court in good faith. Finally, she contended that the essence of true justice would be served if the case would be decided on the merits. The CA, however, agreed with the OSG.
Issue: Whether or not the sandiganbayan has exclusive appellate jurisdiction over the petition. Ruling:

The OSG then filed a Manifestation and Motion stating, among others, that it is the Sandiganbayan which has exclusive appellate jurisdiction over petitioners case, thus, it is the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) that has the duty and responsibility to represent the People in cases within the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan and in all cases elevated from the Sandiganbayan to the Supreme Court. The OSG prayed that: (1) the Manifestation be noted; (2) it be excused from further participating in this case; (3) petitioner be ordered to furnish the OSP with a copy of the petition together with its annexes; and (4) the OSP be given a fresh period within which to file its comment. Primarily, it pointed out that the dismissal of petitioners appeal by the CA was proper as it was indeed the Sandiganbayan which has jurisdiction over the case; that the negligence of counsel binds the client; and that the right to appeal is a mere statutory privilege and may be exercised only in the manner prescribed by law. As the petitioner failed to perfect her appeal in accordance with law, the RTC resolution affirming the MCTC Decision was rendered final and executory. There is no quibble that petitioner, through her former counsel, had taken a wrong procedure. After the RTC rendered an adverse decision, she should have sought relief from the Sandiganbayan in conformity with R.A. No. 8249. Under R.A. No. 8249, the Sandiganbayan shall exercise exclusive appellate jurisdiction over final judgments, resolutions or orders of regional trial courts whether in the exercise of their own original jurisdiction or of their appellate jurisdiction as herein provided. Thus, in this case, the CA was correct in dismissing the appeal for lack of jurisdiction. Section 2 of Rule 50 of the 1997 Revised Rules of Court provides, among others, that "an appeal erroneously taken to the Court of Appeals shall not be transferred to the appropriate court but shall be dismissed outright." This has been the consistent holding of the Court.

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PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. ROMEO F. PARADEZA, accusedappellant. G.R. No. 144590 February 7, 2003
Facts:

On or about the 13th day of August, 1998, at about 7:00 to 8:00 oclock in the evening at Brgy. Macarang, in the Municipality of Palauig, Province of Zambales, Philippines and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the said accused, with lewd design(s) and by means of force, threats and intimidation, did then and there willfully, unlawfully and feloniously have sexual intercourse with and carnal knowledge of one Lailani E. Gayas, a woman with mental disability and/or emotional disorder, without her consent and against her will, and the same accused knew of said disability of Lailani E. Gayas, to the damage and prejudice of the latter. When arraigned, appellant with assistance of counsel de parte pleaded not guilty to the charge. The pre-trial conference was then terminated and Criminal Case No. RTC 2511-I was accordingly tried. The trial court found complainant to be a credible witness and, as earlier stated, convicted appellant of the offense charged and sentenced him to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua. Seasonably, appellant filed his notice of appeal. On April 3, 2002, however, the Public Attorneys Office, as counsel for appellant, filed a motion to withdraw his appeal. The OSG, in its comment seeking stiffer penalties, pointed out that since the appellee as well as the appellant already filed briefs, under the Rules of Court, the approval of appellants motion to withdraw his appeal is now a matter of discretion on the part of this Court.
Issue: Whether or not to grant appellants motion to withdraw his appeal is valid.

Ruling:

Under Rule 50, Section 3 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure, the withdrawal of an appeal is a matter of right before the filing of the appellees brief. After that, withdrawal may be allowed in the discretion of the court. Said Rule is applicable to this case pursuant to Rule 124, Section 18 of the 2000 Rules of Criminal Procedure. In the present case, accused-appellants motion to withdraw his appeal was made only after the OSG had filed the Brief for Appellee, the Court had required appellant to file his Reply Brief per its Resolution dated December 10, 2001. It could therefore be said that the accused-appellant had not yet completed the process of filing briefs when he moved to withdraw his appeal, a situation which may call for a more liberal rule. Appellant in withdrawing his appeal has accepted and recognized that the trial courts judgment of conviction and his sentence thereunder is conclusive upon him. He will remain in custody of the law and will continue to serve the sentence imposed by the lower court as the final verdict. Considering the particular circumstances of this case, this Court is not without justifiable reasons to act favorably on his motion. WHEREFORE, in the interest of justice and in the exercise of the sound discretion of this Court, the Motion to Withdraw Appeal of accused- appellant ROMEO F. PARADEZA is hereby GRANTED.
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IN RE: THE WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS FOR REYNALDO DE VILLA (detained at the New Bilibid Prisons, Muntinlupa City) REYNALDO DE VILLA, petitioner, JUNE DE VILLA, petitioner-relator, vs. THE DIRECTOR, NEW BILIBID PRISONS, respondent. G.R. No. 158802. November 17, 2004
Facts:

Aileen Mendoza charged petitioner Reynaldo de Villa with rape in an information dated January 9, 1995, filed with the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City. When arraigned on January 26, 1995, petitioner entered a plea of not guilty. During the trial, the prosecution established that sometime in the third week of April 1994, at about 10:00 in the morning, Aileen Mendoza woke up in her familys rented room in Sagad, Pasig, Metro Manila, to find petitioner on top of her. Aileen was then aged 12 years and ten months. She was unable to shout for help because petitioner covered her mouth with a pillow and threatened to kill her. Aileen could not do anything but cry. Petitioner succeeded in inserting his penis inside her vagina. After making thrusting motions with his body, petitioner ejaculated. This encounter allegedly resulted in Aileens pregnancy, which was noticed by her mother, Leonila Mendoza, sometime in November 1994. When confronted by her mother, Aileen revealed that petitioner raped her. Aileens parents then brought her to the Pasig Police Station, where they lodged a criminal complaint against petitioner. The trial court found petitioner guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of qualified rape, and sentenced him to death, to indemnify the victim in the amount of P50,000.00, to pay the costs of the suit and to support the child, Leahlyn Mendoza. Three years after the promulgation of our Decision, we are once more faced with the question of Reynaldo de Villas guilt or innocence. On March 16, 2001, Reynaldo de Villa filed a Motion for Partial Reconsideration of the Decision, wherein he once more prayed that DNA tests be conducted. The Motion was denied with finality in a Resolution dated November 20, 2001. Hence, the Decision became final and executory on January 16, 2002.
Issue: Whether or not to consider a new trial is proper/ whether or not habeas corpus is a proper remedy. Ruling:

It must be stressed that the issue of Leahlyn Mendozas paternity is not central to the issue of petitioners guilt or innocence. The rape of the victim Aileen Mendoza is an entirely different question, separate and distinct from the question of the father of her child. Be that as it may, it appears that the petitioner once more relies upon erroneous legal grounds in resorting to the remedy of a motion for new trial. A motion for new trial, under the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, is available only for a limited period of time, and for very limited grounds. Under Section 1, Rule 121, of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, a motion for new trial may be filed at any time before a judgment of conviction becomes final, that is, within fifteen (15) days from its promulgation or notice. Upon finality of the judgment, therefore, a motion for new trial is no longer an available remedy.

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In the case at bar, petitioner anchors his plea on the basis of purportedly newlydiscovered evidence, i.e., the DNA test subsequently conducted, allegedly excluding petitioner from the child purportedly fathered as a result of the rape. The decision sought to be reviewed in this petition for the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus has long attained finality, and entry of judgment was made as far back as January 16, 2002. Moreover, upon an examination of the evidence presented by the petitioner, we do not find that the DNA evidence falls within the statutory or jurisprudential definition of newly- discovered evidence. A motion for new trial based on newly-discovered evidence may be granted only if the following requisites are met: (a) that the evidence was discovered after trial; (b) that said evidence could not have been discovered and produced at the trial even with the exercise of reasonable diligence; (c) that it is material, not merely cumulative, corroborative or impeaching; and (d) that the evidence is of such weight that that, if admitted, it would probably change the judgment. It is essential that the offering party exercised reasonable diligence in seeking to locate the evidence before or during trial but nonetheless failed to secure it. In this instance, although the DNA evidence was undoubtedly discovered after the trial, we nonetheless find that it does not meet the criteria for newly-discovered evidence that would merit a new trial. Such evidence disproving paternity could have been discovered and produced at trial with the exercise of reasonable diligence. Even with all of the compelling and persuasive scientific evidence presented by petitioner and his counsel, we are not convinced that Reynaldo de Villa is entitled to outright acquittal. As correctly pointed out by the Solicitor General, even if it is conclusively proven that Reynaldo de Villa is not the father of Leahlyn Mendoza, his conviction could, in theory, still stand, with Aileen Mendozas testimony and positive identification as its bases. The Solicitor General reiterates, and correctly so, that the pregnancy of the victim has never been an element of the crime of rape. Therefore, the DNA evidence has failed to conclusively prove to this Court that Reynaldo de Villa should be discharged. Although petitioner claims that conviction was based solely on a finding of paternity of the child Leahlyn, this is not the case. Our conviction was based on the clear and convincing testimonial evidence of the victim, which, given credence by the trial court, was affirmed on appeal. WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, the instant petition for habeas corpus and new trial is DISMISSED for lack of merit. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. EMMA MAQUILAN, accusedappellant. G.R. No. 126170. August 27, 1998
Facts:

Accused-appellant Emma Maquilan was found guilty of drug-pushing in violation of R.A. No. 6425, as amended, and sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua in a decision rendered by the Regional Trial Court of Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte (Branch 11) on October 14, 1994. The 59 sticks of hand rolled marijuana cigarettes and the matchbox of marijuana seeds seized from her were ordered destroyed.
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Accused-appellant filed a notice of appeal as a result of which the records of the case (Criminal Case No. S-2191) were forwarded to this Court. However, before the Court could act on the appeal and require her to file an appellants brief, accused-appellant moved to withdraw her appeal. In a handwritten letter, dated March 14, 1997, prepared for her by another person, accused-appellant stated that she was going to file a petition for the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus to seek her release from confinement for the sake of her children who needed a mothers support and guidance. In its resolution, dated July 9, 1997, the Court required the Solicitor General to comment, even as it required accusedappellants counsel, Atty. Teresita S. de Guzman, of the Public Attorneys Office (PAO), to confer with her and to determine whether in filing the motion accused-appellant acted of her own free will. In his comment, dated September 22, 1997, the Solicitor General stated he had no objection to the motion. Per certification of Cecilia B. Veneracion, Clerk I and Documents Incharge of the Bureau of Corrections, the Solicitor General believed that accused-appellant fully understood the nature and purpose of her motion. On the other hand, in a manifestation, dated September 3, 1997, Atty. de Guzman informed the Court that accused-appellant had been released from prison on July 25, 1997 by virtue of an order of the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City (Branch 71) issued in a habeas corpuscase. . Counsel therefore asked to be excused from making a report on the voluntariness of the motion to withdraw appeal. In another manifestation, dated November 10, 1997, Atty. de Guzman stated that she had no participation in the filing of the habeas corpus case. In its resolution of June 15, 1998, the Court required Judge Celso D. Lavia of the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City, Branch 71, to show cause why he should not be held in contempt of court for granting the petition for the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus and for ordering the release of accused-appellant from confinement, considering that the appeal in this case was still pending. Petitioner Maquilan states that she has actually served 4 years, 10 months and 13 days of good conduct time allowance as of 06 January 1997. Petitioner Maquilan therefore is entitled to benefit from the reduction of penalty introduced by the new law and her continued detention in the (Correctional Institution for Women) is a violation of (her) basic human rights and that, therefore, (she) should be released from prison without further delay
Issue: Whether or not the order of the court on granting release of the petitioner based on habeas corpus is valid. Ruling:

The release of accused-appellant constitutes unlawful interference with the proceedings of this Court and is only somewhat mitigated by the fact that the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City appears to have been misled by accused-appellant as to the status of the decision in Criminal Case No. S-2191. The trial courts order granting release on habeas corpus, based as it is on the erroneous assumption that the decision in the criminal case had become final, is void. The trial court had no jurisdiction to issue the order in question. We now declare that the conviction by final judgment limitation under Section 19, Article VII
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of the present Constitution prohibits the grant of pardon, whether full or conditional, to an accused during the pendency of his appeal from his conviction by the trial court. Any application therefore, if one is made, should not be acted upon or the process toward its grant should not be begun unless the appeal is withdrawn. WHEREFORE, the motion to withdraw appeal is DENIED and the Bureau of Corrections is DIRECTED to effect the re-arrest within sixty (60) days from notice of accused-appellant Emma Maquilan, utilizing for this purpose the assistance of the Philippine National Police and the National Bureau of Investigation, and her reconfinement thereafter at the Correctional Institute for Women in Mandaluyong, Metro Manila and forthwith to submit a report to the Court. Further action on the appeal is held in abeyance pending the re-arrest of accused-appellant Emma Maquilan. Accused-appellant Emma Maquilan, Atty. Editha C. Pio of the Public Attorneys Office, and Rachel D. Ruelo, Superintendent IV of the Correctional Institute for Women are hereby REQUIRED to SHOW CAUSE within ten (10) days from notice why they should not be held in contempt for misrepresenting to the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City (Branch 71) the status of Criminal Case No. S-2191. SUSAN GO and the PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, petitioners, vs. FERNANDO L. DIMAGIBA G.R. No. 151876 June 21, 2005
Facts:

Respondent Fernando L. Dimagiba issued to Petitioner Susan Go thirteen (13) checks which, when presented to the drawee bank for encashment or payment on the due dates, were dishonored for the reason "account closed." Dimagiba was subsequently prosecuted for 13 counts of violation of BP 22 under separate Complaints filed with the Municipal Trial Court in Cities (MTCC) in Baguio City. After a joint trial, the MTCC (Branch 4) rendered a Decision on July 16, 1999, convicting the accused in the 13 cases. The appeal of Dimagiba was raffled to Branch 4 of the RTC in Baguio City. On May 23, 2000, the RTC denied the appeal and sustained his conviction. There being no further appeal to the Court of Appeals (CA), the RTC issued on February 1, 2001, a Certificate of Finality of the Decision. Thus, on February 14, 2001, the MTCC issued an Order directing the arrest of Dimagiba for the service of his sentence as a result of his conviction. The trial court also issued a Writ of Execution to enforce his civil liability. On February 27, 2001, Dimagiba filed a Motion for Reconsideration of the MTCC Order. He prayed for the recall of the Order of Arrest and the modification of the final Decision, arguing that the penalty of fine only, instead of imprisonment also, should have been imposed on him. The arguments raised in that Motion were reiterated in a Motion for the Partial Quashal of the Writ of Execution filed on February 28, 2001. In an Order dated August 22, 2001, the MTCC denied the Motion for Reconsideration and directed the issuance of a Warrant of Arrest against Dimagiba. On September 28, 2001, he was arrested and imprisoned for the service of his sentence.

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On October 9, 2001, he filed with the RTC of Baguio City a Petition for a writ of habeas corpus. The case was raffled to Branch 5, which scheduled the hearing for October 10, 2001. Copies of the Order were served on respondents counsels and the city warden. A subsequent Order, explaining in greater detail the basis of the grant of the writ of habeas corpus, was issued on October 11, 2001. The RTC held that this rule should be retroactively applied in favor of Dimagiba. On October 22, 2001, Petitioner Go filed a Motion for Reconsideration of the RTC Orders dated October 10 and 11, 2001. That Motion was denied on January 18, 2002.
Issue: Whether or not the petition for habeas corpus was validly granted. Ruling:

The writ of habeas corpus applies to all cases of illegal confinement or detention in which individuals are deprived of liberty. It was devised as a speedy and effectual remedy to relieve persons from unlawful restraint; or, more specifically, to obtain immediate relief for those who may have been illegally confined or imprisoned without sufficient cause and thus deliver them from unlawful custody. It is therefore a writ of inquiry intended to test the circumstances under which a person is detained. In the present case, the MTCC of Baguio City had full knowledge of all relevant circumstances from which respondents conviction and sentence were based. The penalty imposed was well within the confines of the law. Upon appeal, the conviction was sustained by RTC-Branch 4 of Baguio City. Eventually, the Decision attained finality. Hence, RTCBranch 5 did not have the jurisdiction to modify the lawful judgment in the guise of granting a writ of habeas corpus. The doctrine of equal protection of laws does not apply for the same reasons as those on retroactivity. Foremost of these reasons is that the Circular is not a law that deletes the penalty of imprisonment. As explained earlier, it is merely a rule of preference as to which penalty should be imposed under the peculiar circumstances of a case. At any rate, this matter deserves scant consideration, because respondent failed to raise any substantial argument to support his contention. WHEREFORE, the Petition is GRANTED and the assailed Orders NULLIFIED. Respondents Petition for habeas corpus is hereby DENIED. Let this case be REMANDED to MTCC of Baguio City for the re-arrest of respondent and the completion of his sentence.

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Rule 124: Procedure in the Court of Appeals


ELBERT TAN, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS AND PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents G.R. No. 110715. December 12, 1997
Facts:

The evidence shows that, sometime in December 1986, complainant Mariano S. Macias read an advertisement in a newspaper offering for sale certain four-wheeler Isuzu trucks. Calling up the advertised telephone number, he was able to talk with accused Elbert Tan, and thereafter, pursuant to their appointment, the complainant went to the place of the accused in Grace Park, presumably in Caloocan City. The complainant and the accused then agreed that the complainant would buy the said vehicle at the price of P92,000.00 with P17,000.00 as down payment and the complainants school bus, valued at P65,000.00 to be traded in, and the balance of P10,000.00 to be paid to the accused upon the delivery of the truck to the complainant. On December 15, 1986, complainant Macias paid to accused Tan the amount of P17,000.00 as down payment, and executed a deed of absolute sale transferring to Tan the complainants school bus at the price of P65,000.00 to be applied as part of the purchase price of the four wheeler Isuzu truck which the complainant bought from the accused. Going to the shop where the truck was being assembled to make a verification, the complainant saw a china man named Johnny, supervising the entire shop. Johnny informed the complainant that the trucks in the shop were owned by him and not by accused Tan. During arraignment, petitioner pleaded not guilty. Trial ensued in due course. After the prosecution rested its case, petitioner filed a Motion for Leave to File Demurrer to Evidence dated July 25, 1988. In its Order dated July 29, 1988. It lies solely within the discretion of the accused whether or not to file a demurrer to evidence. However, the accused is warned that, pursuant to the said section, if he files a demurrer to evidence, he is deemed to have waived his right to adduce evidence. Notwithstanding the said order, petitioner subsequently filed a demurrer on the ground of insufficiency of evidence. The prosecution opposed the demurrer contending that the evidence presented could sustain conviction and that the compromise agreement between private complainant and petitioner did not extinguish his criminal liability. In an Order dated December 9, 1988, the trial court denied petitioners demurrer to evidence.
Issue: Whether or not filing a demurrer to evidence is allowed Ruling:

As a rule, the resolution of a motion to dismiss or a demurrer to evidence is left to the exercise of sound judicial discretion. Unless there is a grave abuse thereof amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction, the trial courts denial of a motion to dismiss may not be disturbed. The trial court did not give due course to petitioners Motion for Leave to File Demurrer to Evidence. It could not have done otherwise; granting or denying the motion would have served no purpose. The Rules of Court, which were in effect when the trial
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court acted on the motion for leave to file a demurrer, did not distinguish a demurrer filed with leave of court from one filed without leave. Thus, the trial court prudently warned petitioner in its Order dated July 29, 1988, that pursuant to the said section, if he files a demurrer to evidence, he is deemed to have waived his right to adduce evidence. Petitioner ignored such warning and filed a demurrer. In light of the rule in effect at that time, petitioner is deemed to have waived his right to adduce evidence for his defense. On the basis of the foregoing underscored portion of the Rules, it is clear that petitioners argument is completely bereft of merit. As noted earlier, the July 29, 1988 Order of the trial court was explicit in warning petitioner that the filing of a demurrer was a waiver of his right to adduce evidence. In no way can this order be interpreted as giving petitioner a leave, even an implied one, to present evidence in the event the trial court denied his demurrer. Nevertheless, petitioner counters that he is merely praying for said order to be considered as an implied leave. We rule, however, that the amendments to Section 15, Rule 119 of the Rules of Court, allows an accused to adduce evidence on his behalf only when he obtained an express leave of court prior to the filing of his demurrer. Hence, even if the July 29, 1988 Order of the trial court were to be interpreted as an implied leave, petitioner would still not acquire the right to present evidence. In clear and unequivocal language, the Rules of Court as amended allow such right only when there is an express leave of court. WHEREFORE, premises considered, the petition is DENIED and the assailed Decision is AFFIRMED in toto. Costs against petitioner.

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