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Who can file the complaint?

(RULE 9, SECTION 1, RPEC)


Any
a. Offended party
b. Peace officer
c. Any public officer charged with the enforcement of an environmental law can
file a complaint
Examples of public officer charged with enforcement of environmental laws
a. Protected Areas Supervisor (PASu) - example (Mt. Apo Illegal Trekking)
b. DENR Personnel (CENRO, foresters, forest rangers)
c. Wildlife Enforcement Officers

TAKE NOTE: (Section 2, Rule 110, Rules of Court) THE COMPLAINT


MUST BE IN WRITING
IN THE NAME OF THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

WHAT IS A COMPLAINT?
A complaint is a sworn written statement, in question and answer form, charging a
person with an offense, subscribed by the offended party, any person peace officer
or other public officer charged with the enforcement of environmental law violated

How is a criminal action for violation of an environmental law instituted? (RULE 9,


RPEC)
In flagrante -> arrest -> Inquest/P.I. -> commitment order -
Information is filed in Court
By filing of a complaint with the Office of the Prosecutor of the place where the crime
is committed. (AFTER THE FACT)

1st ELEMENT THAT SETS THE RULE IN MOTION: ACT OR OMISSION PUNISHABLE
BY LAW
NULLUM CRIMEN, NULLA POENA SINE LEGE
There is no crime when there is no law punishing it.
INTENT - NECESSARY / NOT NECESSARY (MALA IN SE; MALA PROHIBITA)
ACT OR OMISSION: Possession of timber or other forest products without the legal
documents required under existing forest laws and regulations. (People v Que)
REVISED FORESTRY CODE: MALA PROHIBITA
General Rule: Intent is not necessary in cases which are Mala Prohibita
Exception: Section 64 (2) - There must be intent to possess.

PEOPLE V QUE
The facts show that two weeks before March 8, 1994, SPO1 Dexter Corpuz, a
member of the Provincial Task Force on Illegal Logging, received an information that
a ten-wheeler truck bearing plate number PAD-548 loaded with illegally cut lumber
will pass through Ilocos Norte. Acting on said information, members of the Provincial
Task Force went on patrol several times within the vicinity of General Segundo
Avenue of Laoag City.
On March 8, 1994, SPO1 Corpuz, together with SPO1 Zaldy Asuncion and SPO1
Elmer Patoc went on patrol around the area. At about 1:00 in the morning, they
posted themselves at the corner of General Segundo Avenue and Rizal Street. Thirty
minutes later, they saw a ten-wheeler truck with plate number PAD-548 pass by.
They followed the truck and apprehended it at the Marcos Bridge.
There were three persons on board the truck: driver Wilfredo Cacao, accused-
appellant Wilson Que and an unnamed person. The driver identified accused-
appellant as the owner of the truck and the cargo.
SPO1 Corpuz checked the cargo and found that it contained coconut slabs. When
interviewed, accused-appellant told SPO1 Corpuz that there were sawn lumber
inserted in between the coconut slabs.
SPO1 Corpuz asked accused-appellant for the Cargos supporting documents,
specifically (1) certificate of lumber origin, (2) certificate of transport agreement, (3)
auxiliary invoice, (4) receipt from the DENR, and (5) present any of these documents.
All he could show was a certification from the Community Environment and Natural
Resources Office (CENRO), Sanchez Mira, Cagayan that he legally acquired the
coconut slabs. The certification was issued to facilitate transport of the slabs from
Sanchez Mira, Cagayan to San Vicente, Urdaneta, Pangasinan.
SPO1 Corpuz brought accused-appellant to the office of the Provincial Task Force at
the provincial capitol. Again, accused-appellant admitted to the members of the
Provincial Task Force that there were lumber under the coconut slabs.

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE RPEC


SLAPP SUITS
Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation
SLAPP SUIT - Meant to vex, harass law enforcers
SLAPP is a defense in criminal, administrative or civil cases filed against the
law enforcers
Go back to the situation in People v Que
MR. QUE will file an administrative case against SPO1 Corpuz before the
Office of the Ombudsman/NAPOLCOM. In SPO1 Corpuzs Counter-affidavit, he may
raise the defense that the same is a SLAPP suit meant to discourage him from filing
the case.
GROUND FOR DISMISSAL OF THE ACTION

WRIT OF CONTINUING MANDAMUS


Compel the performance of a ministerial duty
Command the doing of what needs to be done
Ex. Submission of Compliance Reports from government agencies

HIGHLIGHTS OF RPEC
WRIT OF KALIKASAN
Extra-ordinary remedy available to persons (NGO, public interest group)
In behalf of persons whose constitutional right to a balanced and healthful
ecology is violated or threatened by a violation by an unlawful act or omission
of a public official or employee or private entity
ENVIRONMENTAL DAMAGE of such magnitude as to prejudice the life,
health or property of Two or more cities/provinces
Basis: Thermal Pollution, Air Pollution

HIGHLIGHTS OF RPEC
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION ORDER
Order issued by the court
To direct/enjoin a person or a government agency to perform or desist from
doing an act, to protect and conserve the environment
Akin to a TRO (Temporary Restraining Order)
TEPO (Temporary Protection Order) - 72 Hours

HIGHLIGHTS OF RPEC
1. CITIZENS SUIT
Liberalizes Locus Standi (RIght to file in court)
i. Real Party in interest
ii. Citizens Suit (Filipino people in representation of others, including
minors or generations yet unborn, Oposa v Factoran)
2. CONSENT DECREE
Judicially approved compromise agreement

OBJECTIVES FOR THE RULE


1. Protect and advance the right of people to healthful and balanced ecology
2. Simplified, speedy, inexpensive procedure
3. Ensure effective enforcement of environmental rules
4. Enable courts to manage and monitor environmental cases

INTRODUCTION
Right to a Balanced and Healthful Ecology
Constitutional human right
Oposa v Factoran (1993 Supreme Court Case)
Supreme Court promulgated the Rules of Procedure for Environmental cases on
April 29, 2010

PHILIPPINE LEGAL SYSTEM


Substantive Laws - Source of rights (Section 2, RPEC)
Procedural Laws - How to enforce such rights (RPEC, RoC)

WHAT IS JUDGEMENT (RULE 120, RULES OF COURT)


Section 1. Judgement definition and form - Judgement is the adjudication by the
court that the accused is guilty or not guilty of the offense charged and the imposition
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 facts and the law upon which it is
based.
RPEC does not provide for the procedure on Judgement and Execution vis-a-vis the
RULES ON CRIMINAL PROCEDURE.
Apply the Rules of Court provisions in suppletory manner.

JUDGEMENT MUST BE IN WRITING (Abay Sr. v Garcia 162 SCRA 665; Marcelino
Rivera Jr. v Pp. August 30, 1990)
Where there is a valid information and the accused has been arraigned, an order of
dismissal issued by the court, motu proprio, in the course of a trial of a criminal case,
whether based on the merits or for failure of prosecution witnesses to appear, has
the effect of a judgement of acquittal and double jeopardy attaches. The order is also
immediately executory. HOWEVER, THIS ORDER OF DISMISSAL MUST BE
WRITTEN IN THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGE, PERSONALLY AND DIRECTLY
PREPARED BY THE JUDGE AND SIGNED BY HIM CONFORMABLY WITH THE
PROVISIONS OF RULE 120, SECTION 2 OF THE RULES OF COURT.
In the instant case, it is very clear that the order was merely dictated in open court by
the trial judge. There is no showing that this verbal order of dismissal was ever
reduced to writing and duly signed by him. Thus, it did not yet attain the effect of a
judgement of acquittal, so that it was still within the powers of the judge to set it aside
and enter another order, now in writing and duly signed by him, reinstating the case.