Sie sind auf Seite 1von 123

In our Resolution, dated February 9, 1999, we required respondent to comment on the

FIRST DIVISION administrative complaint.

In his Comment, respondent explained that he and Ms. Ladaga are close blood cousins who
belong to a powerless family from the impoverished town of Bacauag, Surigao del Norte. From
childhood until he finished his law degree, Ms. Ladaga had always supported and guided him while he
[A.M. No. P-99-1287. January 26, 2001] looked up to her as a mentor and an adviser. Because of their close relationship, Ms. Ladaga sought
respondents help and advice when she was charged in Criminal Case No. 84885 for falsification by the
private complainant, Lisa Payoyo Andres, whose only purpose in filing the said criminal case was to
seek vengeance on her cousin. He explained that his cousins discord with Ms. Andres started when
the latters husband, SPO4 Pedro Andres, left the conjugal home to cohabit with Ms. Ladaga. During
OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR, complainant, vs. ATTY. MISAEL M. LADAGA, the course of their illicit affair, SPO4 Andres and Ms. Ladaga begot three (3) children. The birth
Branch Clerk of Court, Regional Trial Court, Branch 133, Makati City, respondent. certificate of their eldest child is the subject of the falsification charge against Ms. Ladaga.Respondent
stated that since he is the only lawyer in their family, he felt it to be his duty to accept Ms. Ladagas plea
to be her counsel since she did not have enough funds to pay for the services of a lawyer. Respondent
RESOLUTION also pointed out that in his seven (7) years of untainted government service, initially with the
Commission on Human Rights and now with the judiciary, he had performed his duties with honesty
KAPUNAN, J.: and integrity and that it was only in this particular case that he had been administratively charged for
extending a helping hand to a close relative by giving a free legal assistance for humanitarian purpose.
He never took advantage of his position as branch clerk of court since the questioned appearances
In a Letter, dated August 31, 1998, respondent Atty. Misael M. Ladaga, Branch Clerk of Court of
were made in the Metropolitan Trial Court of Quezon City and not in Makati where he is holding
the Regional Trial Court of Makati, Branch 133, requested the Court Administrator, Justice Alfredo L.
office. He stressed that during the hearings of the criminal case, he was on leave as shown by his
Benipayo, for authority to appear as pro bono counsel of his cousin, Narcisa Naldoza Ladaga, in
approved leave applications attached to his comment.
Criminal Case No. 84885, entitled People vs. Narcisa Naldoza Ladaga for Falsification of Public
Document pending before the Metropolitan Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 40.[1] While respondents In our Resolution, dated June 22, 1999, we noted respondents comment and referred the
letter-request was pending action, Lisa Payoyo Andres, the private complainant in Criminal Case No. administrative matter to the Executive Judge of the Regional Trial Court of Makati, Judge Josefina
84885, sent a letter to the Court Administrator, dated September 2, 1998, requesting for a certification Guevarra-Salonga, for investigation, report and recommendation.
with regard to respondents authority to appear as counsel for the accused in the said criminal
case.[2] On September 7, 1998, the Office of the Court Administrator referred the matter to respondent In her Report, dated September 29, 1999, Judge Salonga made the following findings and
for comment.[3] recommendation:
In his Comment,[4] dated September 14, 1998, respondent admitted that he had appeared in
Criminal Case No. 84885 without prior authorization. He reasoned out that the factual circumstances There is no question that Atty. Misael Ladaga appeared as counsel for and in behalf of his cousin,
surrounding the criminal case compelled him to handle the defense of his cousin who did not have Narcisa Naldoza Ladaga, an accused in Criminal Case No. 84-885 for Falsification of Public
enough resources to hire the services of a counsel de parte; while, on the other hand, private Documents before the METC of Quezon City. It is also denied that the appearance of said respondent
complainant was a member of a powerful family who was out to get even with his cousin. Furthermore, in said case was without the previous permission of the Court.
he rationalized that his appearance in the criminal case did not prejudice his office nor the interest of
the public since he did not take advantage of his position. In any case, his appearances in court were
An examination of the records shows that during the occasions that the respondent appeared as such
covered by leave application approved by the presiding judge.
counsel before the METC of Quezon City, he was on official leave of absence. Moreover, his Presiding
On December 8, 1998, the Court issued a resolution denying respondents request for Judge, Judge Napoleon Inoturan was aware of the case he was handling. That the respondent
authorization to appear as counsel and directing the Office of the Court Administrator to file formal appeared as pro bono counsel likewise cannot be denied. His cousin-client Narcisa Ladaga herself
charges against him for appearing in court without the required authorization from the Court. [5] On positively declared that the respondent did not receive a single centavo from her. Helpless as she was
January 25, 1999, the Court Administrator filed the instant administrative complaint against respondent and respondent being the only lawyer in the family, he agreed to represent her out of his compassion
for violating Sec. 7(b)(2) of Republic Act No. 6713, otherwise known as the Code of Conduct and and high regard for her.
Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees, which provides:
It may not be amiss to point out, this is the first time that respondent ever handled a case for a member
Sec. 7. Prohibited Acts and Transactions. In addition to acts and omissions of public officials and of his family who is like a big sister to him. He appeared for free and for the purpose of settling the
employees now prescribed in the Constitution and existing laws, the following shall constitute case amicably. Furthermore, his Presiding Judge was aware of his appearance as counsel for his
prohibited acts and transactions of any public official and employee and are hereby declared to be cousin. On top of this, during all the years that he has been in government service, he has maintained
unlawful: his integrity and independence.

xxx RECOMMENDATION

(b) Outside employment and other activities related thereto.- Public officials and
In the light of the foregoing, it appearing that the respondent appeared as counsel for his cousin
employees during their incumbency shall not:
without first securing permission from the court, and considering that this is his first time to do it
xxx coupled with the fact that said appearance was not for a fee and was with the knowledge of his
Presiding Judge, it is hereby respectfully recommended that he be REPRIMANDED with a stern
warning that any repetition of such act would be dealt with more severely.[6]
(2) Engage in the private practice of their profession unless authorized by the Constitution
or law, Provided, that such practice will not conflict or tend to conflict with their official
functions; We agree with the recommendation of the investigating judge.
Respondent is charged under Sec. 7(b)(2) of the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Respondent entered his appearance and attended court proceedings on numerous
Public Officials and Employees which prohibits civil servants from engaging in the private practice of occasions, i.e., May 4-15, 1998, June 18, 1998, July 13, 1998 and August 5, 1998, as borne out by his
their profession. A similar prohibition is found under Sec. 35, Rule 138 of the Revised Rules of Court own admission. It is true that he filed leave applications corresponding to the dates he appeared in
which disallows certain attorneys from engaging in the private practice of their profession. The said court. However, he failed to obtain a prior permission from the head of the Department. The presiding
section reads: judge of the court to which respondent is assigned is not the head of the Department contemplated by
law.
SEC. 35. Certain attorneys not to practice.- No judge or other official or employee of the superior WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, respondent Atty. Misael M. Ladaga is hereby
courts or of the Office of the Solicitor General, shall engage in private practice as a member of the bar REPRIMANDED with a stern warning that any repetition of such act would be dealt with more severely.
or give professional advise to clients.
SO ORDERED.
However, it should be clarified that private practice of a profession, specifically the law Davide, Jr., C.J., (Chairman), Puno, Pardo, and Ynares-Santiago, JJ., concur.
profession in this case, which is prohibited, does not pertain to an isolated court appearance; rather, it
contemplates a succession of acts of the same nature habitually or customarily holding ones self to the
public as a lawyer.

In the case of People vs. Villanueva,[7] we explained the meaning of the term private practice
prohibited by the said section, to wit:

We believe that the isolated appearance of City Attorney Fule did not constitute private practice, within
the meaning and contemplation of the Rules. Practice is more than an isolated appearance, for it
consists in frequent or customary action, a succession of acts of the same kind. In other words, it is
frequent habitual exercise (State vs. Cotner, 127, p. 1, 87 Kan. 864, 42 LRA, N.S. 768) Practice of law
to fall within the prohibition of statute has been interpreted as customarily or habitually holding ones
self out to the public, as a lawyer and demanding payment for such services (State vs. Bryan, 4 S.E.
522, 98 N.C. 644, 647). The appearance as counsel on one occasion, is not conclusive as
determinative of engagement in the private practice of law. The following observation of the Solicitor
General is noteworthy:

Essentially, the word private practice of law implies that one must have presented himself to be
in the active and continued practice of the legal profession and that his professional services are
available to the public for a compensation, as a source of his livelihood or in consideration of his
said services.

For one thing, it has never been refuted that City Attorney Fule had been given permission by his
immediate superior, the Secretary of Justice, to represent the complainant in the case at bar, who is a
relative.[8]

Based on the foregoing, it is evident that the isolated instances when respondent appeared
as pro bono counsel of his cousin in Criminal Case No. 84885 does not constitute the private practice
of the law profession contemplated by law.

Nonetheless, while respondents isolated court appearances did not amount to a private practice
of law, he failed to obtain a written permission therefor from the head of the Department, which is this
Court as required by Section 12, Rule XVIII of the Revised Civil Service Rules, thus:

Sec. 12. No officer or employee shall engage directly in any private business, vocation,
or profession or be connected with any commercial, credit, agricultural, or industrial
undertaking without a written permission from the head of the Department: Provided, That this
prohibition will be absolute in the case of those officers and employees whose duties and
responsibilities require that their entire time be at the disposal of the Government; Provided, further,
That if an employee is granted permission to engage in outside activities, time so devoted outside of
office hours should be fixed by the agency to the end that it will not impair in any way the efficiency of
the officer or employee: And provided, finally, That no permission is necessary in the case of
investments, made by an officer or employee, which do not involve real or apparent conflict between
his private interests and public duties, or in any way influence him in the discharge of his duties, and he
shall not take part in the management of the enterprise or become an officer of the board of directors.[9]
Republic of the Philippines preparation of legal instruments of all kinds, and the giving of all legal advice to clients. It
SUPREME COURT embraces all advice to clients and all actions taken for them in matters connected with the
Manila law. An attorney engages in the practice of law by maintaining an office where he is held out
to be-an attorney, using a letterhead describing himself as an attorney, counseling clients in
legal matters, negotiating with opposing counsel about pending litigation, and fixing and
SECOND DIVISION collecting fees for services rendered by his associate. (Black's Law Dictionary, 3rd ed.)

G.R. No. 100113 September 3, 1991 The practice of law is not limited to the conduct of cases in court. (Land Title Abstract and Trust Co. v.
Dworken, 129 Ohio St. 23, 193 N.E. 650) A person is also considered to be in the practice of law when
RENATO CAYETANO, petitioner, he:
vs.
CHRISTIAN MONSOD, HON. JOVITO R. SALONGA, COMMISSION ON APPOINTMENT, and HON. ... for valuable consideration engages in the business of advising person, firms, associations
GUILLERMO CARAGUE, in his capacity as Secretary of Budget and Management, respondents. or corporations as to their rights under the law, or appears in a representative capacity as
an advocate in proceedings pending or prospective, before any court, commissioner,
Renato L. Cayetano for and in his own behalf. referee, board, body, committee, or commission constituted by law or authorized to settle
controversies and there, in such representative capacity performs any act or acts for the
purpose of obtaining or defending the rights of their clients under the law. Otherwise stated,
Sabina E. Acut, Jr. and Mylene Garcia-Albano co-counsel for petitioner. one who, in a representative capacity, engages in the business of advising clients as to their
rights under the law, or while so engaged performs any act or acts either in court or outside
of court for that purpose, is engaged in the practice of law. (State ex. rel. Mckittrick v..C.S.
Dudley and Co., 102 S.W. 2d 895, 340 Mo. 852)

This Court in the case of Philippine Lawyers Association v.Agrava, (105 Phil. 173,176-177) stated:
PARAS, J.:

The practice of law is not limited to the conduct of cases or litigation in court; it embraces
We are faced here with a controversy of far-reaching proportions. While ostensibly only legal issues
the preparation of pleadings and other papers incident to actions and special proceedings,
are involved, the Court's decision in this case would indubitably have a profound effect on the political
the management of such actions and proceedings on behalf of clients before judges and
aspect of our national existence.
courts, and in addition, conveying. In general, all advice to clients, and all action taken for
them in matters connected with the law incorporation services, assessment and
The 1987 Constitution provides in Section 1 (1), Article IX-C: condemnation services contemplating an appearance before a judicial body, the foreclosure
of a mortgage, enforcement of a creditor's claim in bankruptcy and insolvency proceedings,
and conducting proceedings in attachment, and in matters of estate and guardianship have
There shall be a Commission on Elections composed of a Chairman and six Commissioners been held to constitute law practice, as do the preparation and drafting of legal
who shall be natural-born citizens of the Philippines and, at the time of their appointment, at instruments, where the work done involves the determination by the trained legal mind of
least thirty-five years of age, holders of a college degree, and must not have been the legal effect of facts and conditions. (5 Am. Jr. p. 262, 263). (Emphasis supplied)
candidates for any elective position in the immediately preceding -elections. However, a
majority thereof, including the Chairman, shall be members of the Philippine Bar who have
been engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years. (Emphasis supplied) Practice of law under modem conditions consists in no small part of work performed outside
of any court and having no immediate relation to proceedings in court. It embraces
conveyancing, the giving of legal advice on a large variety of subjects, and the preparation
The aforequoted provision is patterned after Section l(l), Article XII-C of the 1973 Constitution which and execution of legal instruments covering an extensive field of business and trust
similarly provides: relations and other affairs. Although these transactions may have no direct connection with
court proceedings, they are always subject to become involved in litigation. They require in
There shall be an independent Commission on Elections composed of a Chairman and eight many aspects a high degree of legal skill, a wide experience with men and affairs, and great
Commissioners who shall be natural-born citizens of the Philippines and, at the time of their capacity for adaptation to difficult and complex situations. These customary functions of an
appointment, at least thirty-five years of age and holders of a college degree. However, a majority attorney or counselor at law bear an intimate relation to the administration of justice by the
thereof, including the Chairman, shall be members of the Philippine Bar who have been engaged in the courts. No valid distinction, so far as concerns the question set forth in the order, can be
practice of law for at least ten years.' (Emphasis supplied) drawn between that part of the work of the lawyer which involves appearance in court and
that part which involves advice and drafting of instruments in his office. It is of importance to
the welfare of the public that these manifold customary functions be performed by persons
Regrettably, however, there seems to be no jurisprudence as to what constitutes practice of law as a possessed of adequate learning and skill, of sound moral character, and acting at all times
legal qualification to an appointive office. under the heavy trust obligations to clients which rests upon all attorneys.
(Moran, Comments on the Rules of Court, Vol. 3 [1953 ed.] , p. 665-666, citing In re Opinion
of the Justices [Mass.], 194 N.E. 313, quoted in Rhode Is. Bar Assoc. v. Automobile Service
Black defines "practice of law" as: Assoc. [R.I.] 179 A. 139,144). (Emphasis ours)

The rendition of services requiring the knowledge and the application of legal principles and The University of the Philippines Law Center in conducting orientation briefing for new lawyers (1974-
technique to serve the interest of another with his consent. It is not limited to appearing in 1975) listed the dimensions of the practice of law in even broader terms as advocacy, counselling and
court, or advising and assisting in the conduct of litigation, but embraces the preparation of public service.
pleadings, and other papers incident to actions and special proceedings, conveyancing, the
One may be a practicing attorney in following any line of employment in the profession. If MR. OPLE. Yes. So that the construction given to this is that this is equivalent to the
what he does exacts knowledge of the law and is of a kind usual for attorneys engaging in practice of law.
the active practice of their profession, and he follows some one or more lines of employment
such as this he is a practicing attorney at law within the meaning of the statute. (Barr v.
Cardell, 155 NW 312) MR. FOZ. Yes, Mr. Presiding Officer.

Practice of law means any activity, in or out of court, which requires the application of law, legal MR. OPLE. Thank you.
procedure, knowledge, training and experience. "To engage in the practice of law is to perform those
acts which are characteristics of the profession. Generally, to practice law is to give notice or render ... ( Emphasis supplied)
any kind of service, which device or service requires the use in any degree of legal knowledge or skill."
(111 ALR 23)
Section 1(1), Article IX-D of the 1987 Constitution, provides, among others, that the Chairman and two
Commissioners of the Commission on Audit (COA) should either be certified public accountants with
The following records of the 1986 Constitutional Commission show that it has adopted a liberal not less than ten years of auditing practice, or members of the Philippine Bar who have been engaged
interpretation of the term "practice of law." in the practice of law for at least ten years. (emphasis supplied)

MR. FOZ. Before we suspend the session, may I make a manifestation which I forgot to do Corollary to this is the term "private practitioner" and which is in many ways synonymous with the word
during our review of the provisions on the Commission on Audit. May I be allowed to make a "lawyer." Today, although many lawyers do not engage in private practice, it is still a fact that the
very brief statement? majority of lawyers are private practitioners. (Gary Munneke, Opportunities in Law Careers [VGM
Career Horizons: Illinois], [1986], p. 15).
THE PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Jamir).
At this point, it might be helpful to define private practice. The term, as commonly understood, means
The Commissioner will please proceed. "an individual or organization engaged in the business of delivering legal services." (Ibid.). Lawyers
who practice alone are often called "sole practitioners." Groups of lawyers are called "firms." The firm
is usually a partnership and members of the firm are the partners. Some firms may be organized as
MR. FOZ. This has to do with the qualifications of the members of the Commission on Audit. professional corporations and the members called shareholders. In either case, the members of the
Among others, the qualifications provided for by Section I is that "They must be Members of firm are the experienced attorneys. In most firms, there are younger or more inexperienced salaried
the Philippine Bar" — I am quoting from the provision — "who have been engaged in the attorneyscalled "associates." (Ibid.).
practice of law for at least ten years".
The test that defines law practice by looking to traditional areas of law practice is essentially
To avoid any misunderstanding which would result in excluding members of the Bar who are now tautologous, unhelpful defining the practice of law as that which lawyers do. (Charles W.
employed in the COA or Commission on Audit, we would like to make the clarification that this Wolfram, Modern Legal Ethics [West Publishing Co.: Minnesota, 1986], p. 593). The practice of law is
provision on qualifications regarding members of the Bar does not necessarily refer or involve actual defined as the performance of any acts . . . in or out of court, commonly understood to be the practice
practice of law outside the COA We have to interpret this to mean that as long as the lawyers who are of law. (State Bar Ass'n v. Connecticut Bank & Trust Co., 145 Conn. 222, 140 A.2d 863, 870 [1958]
employed in the COA are using their legal knowledge or legal talent in their respective work within [quoting Grievance Comm. v. Payne, 128 Conn. 325, 22 A.2d 623, 626 [1941]). Because lawyers
COA, then they are qualified to be considered for appointment as members or commissioners, even perform almost every function known in the commercial and governmental realm, such a definition
chairman, of the Commission on Audit. would obviously be too global to be workable.(Wolfram, op. cit.).

This has been discussed by the Committee on Constitutional Commissions and Agencies and we The appearance of a lawyer in litigation in behalf of a client is at once the most publicly familiar role for
deem it important to take it up on the floor so that this interpretation may be made available whenever lawyers as well as an uncommon role for the average lawyer. Most lawyers spend little time in
this provision on the qualifications as regards members of the Philippine Bar engaging in the practice courtrooms, and a large percentage spend their entire practice without litigating a case. (Ibid., p. 593).
of law for at least ten years is taken up. Nonetheless, many lawyers do continue to litigate and the litigating lawyer's role colors much of both
the public image and the self perception of the legal profession. (Ibid.).
MR. OPLE. Will Commissioner Foz yield to just one question.
In this regard thus, the dominance of litigation in the public mind reflects history, not reality. (Ibid.). Why
is this so? Recall that the late Alexander SyCip, a corporate lawyer, once articulated on the importance
MR. FOZ. Yes, Mr. Presiding Officer. of a lawyer as a business counselor in this wise: "Even today, there are still uninformed laymen whose
concept of an attorney is one who principally tries cases before the courts. The members of the bench
MR. OPLE. Is he, in effect, saying that service in the COA by a lawyer is equivalent to the and bar and the informed laymen such as businessmen, know that in most developed societies today,
requirement of a law practice that is set forth in the Article on the Commission on Audit? substantially more legal work is transacted in law offices than in the courtrooms. General practitioners
of law who do both litigation and non-litigation work also know that in most cases they find themselves
spending more time doing what [is] loosely desccribe[d] as business counseling than in trying cases.
MR. FOZ. We must consider the fact that the work of COA, although it is auditing, will The business lawyer has been described as the planner, the diagnostician and the trial lawyer, the
necessarily involve legal work; it will involve legal work. And, therefore, lawyers who are surgeon. I[t] need not [be] stress[ed] that in law, as in medicine, surgery should be avoided where
employed in COA now would have the necessary qualifications in accordance with the internal medicine can be effective." (Business Star, "Corporate Finance Law," Jan. 11, 1989, p. 4).
Provision on qualifications under our provisions on the Commission on Audit. And,
therefore, the answer is yes.
In the course of a working day the average general practitioner wig engage in a number of legal tasks,
each involving different legal doctrines, legal skills, legal processes, legal institutions, clients, and other
interested parties. Even the increasing numbers of lawyers in specialized practice wig usually perform Truth to tell, many situations involving corporate finance problems would require the
at least some legal services outside their specialty. And even within a narrow specialty such as tax services of an astute attorney because of the complex legal implications that arise from
practice, a lawyer will shift from one legal task or role such as advice-giving to an importantly different each and every necessary step in securing and maintaining the business issue raised.
one such as representing a client before an administrative agency. (Wolfram, supra, p. 687). (Business Star, "Corporate Finance Law," Jan. 11, 1989, p. 4).

By no means will most of this work involve litigation, unless the lawyer is one of the relatively rare types In our litigation-prone country, a corporate lawyer is assiduously referred to as the "abogado
— a litigator who specializes in this work to the exclusion of much else. Instead, the work will require de campanilla." He is the "big-time" lawyer, earning big money and with a clientele
the lawyer to have mastered the full range of traditional lawyer skills of client counselling, advice- composed of the tycoons and magnates of business and industry.
giving, document drafting, and negotiation. And increasingly lawyers find that the new skills of
evaluation and mediation are both effective for many clients and a source of employment. (Ibid.).
Despite the growing number of corporate lawyers, many people could not explain what it is
that a corporate lawyer does. For one, the number of attorneys employed by a single
Most lawyers will engage in non-litigation legal work or in litigation work that is constrained in very corporation will vary with the size and type of the corporation. Many smaller and some large
important ways, at least theoretically, so as to remove from it some of the salient features of corporations farm out all their legal problems to private law firms. Many others have in-
adversarial litigation. Of these special roles, the most prominent is that of prosecutor. In some lawyers' house counsel only for certain matters. Other corporation have a staff large enough to
work the constraints are imposed both by the nature of the client and by the way in which the lawyer is handle most legal problems in-house.
organized into a social unit to perform that work. The most common of these roles are those of
corporate practice and government legal service. (Ibid.).
A corporate lawyer, for all intents and purposes, is a lawyer who handles the legal affairs of
a corporation. His areas of concern or jurisdiction may include, inter alia: corporate legal
In several issues of the Business Star, a business daily, herein below quoted are emerging trends in research, tax laws research, acting out as corporate secretary (in board meetings),
corporate law practice, a departure from the traditional concept of practice of law. appearances in both courts and other adjudicatory agencies (including the Securities and
Exchange Commission), and in other capacities which require an ability to deal with the law.
We are experiencing today what truly may be called a revolutionary transformation in
corporate law practice. Lawyers and other professional groups, in particular those members At any rate, a corporate lawyer may assume responsibilities other than the legal affairs of
participating in various legal-policy decisional contexts, are finding that understanding the the business of the corporation he is representing. These include such matters as
major emerging trends in corporation law is indispensable to intelligent decision-making. determining policy and becoming involved in management. ( Emphasis supplied.)

Constructive adjustment to major corporate problems of today requires an accurate In a big company, for example, one may have a feeling of being isolated from the action, or
understanding of the nature and implications of the corporate law research function not understanding how one's work actually fits into the work of the orgarnization. This can
accompanied by an accelerating rate of information accumulation. The recognition of the be frustrating to someone who needs to see the results of his work first hand. In short, a
need for such improved corporate legal policy formulation, particularly "model-making" and corporate lawyer is sometimes offered this fortune to be more closely involved in the running
"contingency planning," has impressed upon us the inadequacy of traditional procedures in of the business.
many decisional contexts.
Moreover, a corporate lawyer's services may sometimes be engaged by a multinational
In a complex legal problem the mass of information to be processed, the sorting and corporation (MNC). Some large MNCs provide one of the few opportunities available to
weighing of significant conditional factors, the appraisal of major trends, the necessity of corporate lawyers to enter the international law field. After all, international law is practiced
estimating the consequences of given courses of action, and the need for fast decision and in a relatively small number of companies and law firms. Because working in a foreign
response in situations of acute danger have prompted the use of sophisticated concepts of country is perceived by many as glamorous, tills is an area coveted by corporate lawyers. In
information flow theory, operational analysis, automatic data processing, and electronic most cases, however, the overseas jobs go to experienced attorneys while the younger
computing equipment. Understandably, an improved decisional structure must stress the attorneys do their "international practice" in law libraries. (Business Star, "Corporate Law
predictive component of the policy-making process, wherein a "model", of the decisional Practice," May 25,1990, p. 4).
context or a segment thereof is developed to test projected alternative courses of action in
terms of futuristic effects flowing therefrom.
This brings us to the inevitable, i.e., the role of the lawyer in the realm of finance. To borrow
the lines of Harvard-educated lawyer Bruce Wassertein, to wit: "A bad lawyer is one who
Although members of the legal profession are regularly engaged in predicting and projecting fails to spot problems, a good lawyer is one who perceives the difficulties, and the excellent
the trends of the law, the subject of corporate finance law has received relatively little lawyer is one who surmounts them." (Business Star, "Corporate Finance Law," Jan. 11,
organized and formalized attention in the philosophy of advancing corporate legal 1989, p. 4).
education. Nonetheless, a cross-disciplinary approach to legal research has become a vital
necessity.
Today, the study of corporate law practice direly needs a "shot in the arm," so to speak. No
longer are we talking of the traditional law teaching method of confining the subject study to
Certainly, the general orientation for productive contributions by those trained primarily in the Corporation Code and the Securities Code but an incursion as well into the intertwining
the law can be improved through an early introduction to multi-variable decisional context modern management issues.
and the various approaches for handling such problems. Lawyers, particularly with either a
master's or doctorate degree in business administration or management, functioning at the
legal policy level of decision-making now have some appreciation for the concepts and Such corporate legal management issues deal primarily with three (3) types of learning: (1)
analytical techniques of other professions which are currently engaged in similar types of acquisition of insights into current advances which are of particular significance to the
complex decision-making. corporate counsel; (2) an introduction to usable disciplinary skins applicable to a corporate
counsel's management responsibilities; and (3) a devotion to the organization and
management of the legal function itself.
These three subject areas may be thought of as intersecting circles, with a shared area coherent and effective negotiation support, including hands-on on instruction in these
linking them. Otherwise known as "intersecting managerial jurisprudence," it forms a techniques. A simulation case of an international joint venture may be used to illustrate the
unifying theme for the corporate counsel's total learning. point.

Some current advances in behavior and policy sciences affect the counsel's role. For that [Be this as it may,] the organization and management of the legal function, concern three
matter, the corporate lawyer reviews the globalization process, including the resulting pointed areas of consideration, thus:
strategic repositioning that the firms he provides counsel for are required to make, and the
need to think about a corporation's; strategy at multiple levels. The salience of the nation-
state is being reduced as firms deal both with global multinational entities and Preventive Lawyering. Planning by lawyers requires special skills that comprise a major part
simultaneously with sub-national governmental units. Firms increasingly collaborate not only of the general counsel's responsibilities. They differ from those of remedial law. Preventive
with public entities but with each other — often with those who are competitors in other lawyering is concerned with minimizing the risks of legal trouble and maximizing legal rights
arenas. for such legal entities at that time when transactional or similar facts are being considered
and made.

Also, the nature of the lawyer's participation in decision-making within the corporation is
rapidly changing. The modem corporate lawyer has gained a new role as a stakeholder — Managerial Jurisprudence. This is the framework within which are undertaken those
in some cases participating in the organization and operations of governance through activities of the firm to which legal consequences attach. It needs to be directly supportive of
participation on boards and other decision-making roles. Often these new patterns develop this nation's evolving economic and organizational fabric as firms change to stay
alongside existing legal institutions and laws are perceived as barriers. These trends are competitive in a global, interdependent environment. The practice and theory of "law" is not
complicated as corporations organize for global operations. ( Emphasis supplied) adequate today to facilitate the relationships needed in trying to make a global economy
work.

The practising lawyer of today is familiar as well with governmental policies toward the
promotion and management of technology. New collaborative arrangements for promoting Organization and Functioning of the Corporate Counsel's Office. The general counsel has
specific technologies or competitiveness more generally require approaches from industry emerged in the last decade as one of the most vibrant subsets of the legal profession. The
that differ from older, more adversarial relationships and traditional forms of seeking to corporate counsel hear responsibility for key aspects of the firm's strategic issues, including
influence governmental policies. And there are lessons to be learned from other countries. structuring its global operations, managing improved relationships with an increasingly
In Europe, Esprit, Eureka and Race are examples of collaborative efforts between diversified body of employees, managing expanded liability exposure, creating new and
governmental and business Japan's MITI is world famous. (Emphasis supplied) varied interactions with public decision-makers, coping internally with more complex make
or by decisions.

Following the concept of boundary spanning, the office of the Corporate Counsel comprises
a distinct group within the managerial structure of all kinds of organizations. Effectiveness of This whole exercise drives home the thesis that knowing corporate law is not enough to
both long-term and temporary groups within organizations has been found to be related to make one a good general corporate counsel nor to give him a full sense of how the legal
indentifiable factors in the group-context interaction such as the groups actively revising system shapes corporate activities. And even if the corporate lawyer's aim is not the
their knowledge of the environment coordinating work with outsiders, promoting team understand all of the law's effects on corporate activities, he must, at the very least, also
achievements within the organization. In general, such external activities are better gain a working knowledge of the management issues if only to be able to grasp not only the
predictors of team performance than internal group processes. basic legal "constitution' or makeup of the modem corporation. "Business Star", "The
Corporate Counsel," April 10, 1991, p. 4).

In a crisis situation, the legal managerial capabilities of the corporate lawyer vis-a-vis the
managerial mettle of corporations are challenged. Current research is seeking ways both to The challenge for lawyers (both of the bar and the bench) is to have more than a passing
anticipate effective managerial procedures and to understand relationships of financial knowledge of financial law affecting each aspect of their work. Yet, many would admit to
liability and insurance considerations. (Emphasis supplied) ignorance of vast tracts of the financial law territory. What transpires next is a dilemma of
professional security: Will the lawyer admit ignorance and risk opprobrium?; or will he feign
understanding and risk exposure? (Business Star, "Corporate Finance law," Jan. 11, 1989,
Regarding the skills to apply by the corporate counsel, three factors are apropos: p. 4).

First System Dynamics. The field of systems dynamics has been found an effective tool for Respondent Christian Monsod was nominated by President Corazon C. Aquino to the position of
new managerial thinking regarding both planning and pressing immediate problems. An Chairman of the COMELEC in a letter received by the Secretariat of the Commission on Appointments
understanding of the role of feedback loops, inventory levels, and rates of flow, enable on April 25, 1991. Petitioner opposed the nomination because allegedly Monsod does not possess the
users to simulate all sorts of systematic problems — physical, economic, managerial, social, required qualification of having been engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years.
and psychological. New programming techniques now make the system dynamics principles
more accessible to managers — including corporate counsels. (Emphasis supplied)
On June 5, 1991, the Commission on Appointments confirmed the nomination of Monsod as Chairman
of the COMELEC. On June 18, 1991, he took his oath of office. On the same day, he assumed office
Second Decision Analysis. This enables users to make better decisions involving complexity as Chairman of the COMELEC.
and uncertainty. In the context of a law department, it can be used to appraise the
settlement value of litigation, aid in negotiation settlement, and minimize the cost and risk
involved in managing a portfolio of cases. (Emphasis supplied) Challenging the validity of the confirmation by the Commission on Appointments of Monsod's
nomination, petitioner as a citizen and taxpayer, filed the instant petition for certiorari and Prohibition
praying that said confirmation and the consequent appointment of Monsod as Chairman of the
Third Modeling for Negotiation Management. Computer-based models can be used directly Commission on Elections be declared null and void.
by parties and mediators in all lands of negotiations. All integrated set of such tools provide
Atty. Christian Monsod is a member of the Philippine Bar, having passed the bar examinations of 1960 the Philippine External Debts, an unpublished dissertation, U.S.T. Graduate School of Law,
with a grade of 86-55%. He has been a dues paying member of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines 1987, p. 321). ( Emphasis supplied)
since its inception in 1972-73. He has also been paying his professional license fees as lawyer for
more than ten years. (p. 124, Rollo)
A critical aspect of sovereign debt restructuring/contract construction is the set of terms and
conditions which determines the contractual remedies for a failure to perform one or more
After graduating from the College of Law (U.P.) and having hurdled the bar, Atty. Monsod worked in elements of the contract. A good agreement must not only define the responsibilities of both
the law office of his father. During his stint in the World Bank Group (1963-1970), Monsod worked as parties, but must also state the recourse open to either party when the other fails to
an operations officer for about two years in Costa Rica and Panama, which involved getting acquainted discharge an obligation. For a compleat debt restructuring represents a devotion to that
with the laws of member-countries negotiating loans and coordinating legal, economic, and project principle which in the ultimate analysis is sine qua non for foreign loan agreements-an
work of the Bank. Upon returning to the Philippines in 1970, he worked with the Meralco Group, served adherence to the rule of law in domestic and international affairs of whose kind U.S.
as chief executive officer of an investment bank and subsequently of a business conglomerate, and Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. once said: "They carry no banners, they
since 1986, has rendered services to various companies as a legal and economic consultant or chief beat no drums; but where they are, men learn that bustle and bush are not the equal of
executive officer. As former Secretary-General (1986) and National Chairman (1987) of NAMFREL. quiet genius and serene mastery." (See Ricardo J. Romulo, "The Role of Lawyers in
Monsod's work involved being knowledgeable in election law. He appeared for NAMFREL in its Foreign Investments," Integrated Bar of the Philippine Journal, Vol. 15, Nos. 3 and 4, Third
accreditation hearings before the Comelec. In the field of advocacy, Monsod, in his personal capacity and Fourth Quarters, 1977, p. 265).
and as former Co-Chairman of the Bishops Businessmen's Conference for Human Development, has
worked with the under privileged sectors, such as the farmer and urban poor groups, in initiating,
lobbying for and engaging in affirmative action for the agrarian reform law and lately the urban land Interpreted in the light of the various definitions of the term Practice of law". particularly the modern
reform bill. Monsod also made use of his legal knowledge as a member of the Davide Commission, a concept of law practice, and taking into consideration the liberal construction intended by the framers
quast judicial body, which conducted numerous hearings (1990) and as a member of the Constitutional of the Constitution, Atty. Monsod's past work experiences as a lawyer-economist, a lawyer-manager, a
Commission (1986-1987), and Chairman of its Committee on Accountability of Public Officers, for lawyer-entrepreneur of industry, a lawyer-negotiator of contracts, and a lawyer-legislator of both the
which he was cited by the President of the Commission, Justice Cecilia Muñoz-Palma for "innumerable rich and the poor — verily more than satisfy the constitutional requirement — that he has been
amendments to reconcile government functions with individual freedoms and public accountability and engaged in the practice of law for at least ten years.
the party-list system for the House of Representative. (pp. 128-129 Rollo) ( Emphasis supplied)
Besides in the leading case of Luego v. Civil Service Commission, 143 SCRA 327, the Court said:
Just a word about the work of a negotiating team of which Atty. Monsod used to be a member.
Appointment is an essentially discretionary power and must be performed by the officer in
In a loan agreement, for instance, a negotiating panel acts as a team, and which is which it is vested according to his best lights, the only condition being that the appointee
adequately constituted to meet the various contingencies that arise during a negotiation. should possess the qualifications required by law. If he does, then the appointment cannot
Besides top officials of the Borrower concerned, there are the legal officer (such as the legal be faulted on the ground that there are others better qualified who should have been
counsel), the finance manager, and an operations officer (such as an official involved in preferred. This is a political question involving considerations of wisdom which only the
negotiating the contracts) who comprise the members of the team. (Guillermo V. Soliven, appointing authority can decide. (emphasis supplied)
"Loan Negotiating Strategies for Developing Country Borrowers," Staff Paper No. 2, Central
Bank of the Philippines, Manila, 1982, p. 11). (Emphasis supplied) No less emphatic was the Court in the case of (Central Bank v. Civil Service Commission, 171 SCRA
744) where it stated:
After a fashion, the loan agreement is like a country's Constitution; it lays down the law as
far as the loan transaction is concerned. Thus, the meat of any Loan Agreement can be It is well-settled that when the appointee is qualified, as in this case, and all the other legal
compartmentalized into five (5) fundamental parts: (1) business terms; (2) borrower's requirements are satisfied, the Commission has no alternative but to attest to the
representation; (3) conditions of closing; (4) covenants; and (5) events of default. (Ibid., p. appointment in accordance with the Civil Service Law. The Commission has no authority to
13). revoke an appointment on the ground that another person is more qualified for a particular
position. It also has no authority to direct the appointment of a substitute of its choice. To do
In the same vein, lawyers play an important role in any debt restructuring program. For so would be an encroachment on the discretion vested upon the appointing authority. An
aside from performing the tasks of legislative drafting and legal advising, they score national appointment is essentially within the discretionary power of whomsoever it is vested, subject
development policies as key factors in maintaining their countries' sovereignty. (Condensed to the only condition that the appointee should possess the qualifications required by law. (
from the work paper, entitled "Wanted: Development Lawyers for Developing Nations," Emphasis supplied)
submitted by L. Michael Hager, regional legal adviser of the United States Agency for
International Development, during the Session on Law for the Development of Nations at The appointing process in a regular appointment as in the case at bar, consists of four (4) stages: (1)
the Abidjan World Conference in Ivory Coast, sponsored by the World Peace Through Law nomination; (2) confirmation by the Commission on Appointments; (3) issuance of a commission (in the
Center on August 26-31, 1973). ( Emphasis supplied) Philippines, upon submission by the Commission on Appointments of its certificate of confirmation, the
President issues the permanent appointment; and (4) acceptance e.g., oath-taking, posting of bond,
Loan concessions and compromises, perhaps even more so than purely renegotiation etc. . . . (Lacson v. Romero, No. L-3081, October 14, 1949; Gonzales, Law on Public Officers, p. 200)
policies, demand expertise in the law of contracts, in legislation and agreement drafting and
in renegotiation. Necessarily, a sovereign lawyer may work with an international business The power of the Commission on Appointments to give its consent to the nomination of Monsod as
specialist or an economist in the formulation of a model loan agreement. Debt restructuring Chairman of the Commission on Elections is mandated by Section 1(2) Sub-Article C, Article IX of the
contract agreements contain such a mixture of technical language that they should be Constitution which provides:
carefully drafted and signed only with the advise of competent counsel in conjunction with
the guidance of adequate technical support personnel. (See International Law Aspects of
The Chairman and the Commisioners shall be appointed by the President with the consent
of the Commission on Appointments for a term of seven years without reappointment. Of
those first appointed, three Members shall hold office for seven years, two Members for five Finally, one significant legal maxim is:
years, and the last Members for three years, without reappointment. Appointment to any
vacancy shall be only for the unexpired term of the predecessor. In no case shall any
Member be appointed or designated in a temporary or acting capacity. We must interpret not by the letter that killeth, but by the spirit that giveth life.

Anent Justice Teodoro Padilla's separate opinion, suffice it to say that his definition of the Take this hypothetical case of Samson and Delilah. Once, the procurator of Judea asked Delilah (who
practice of law is the traditional or stereotyped notion of law practice, as distinguished was Samson's beloved) for help in capturing Samson. Delilah agreed on condition that —
from the modern concept of the practice of law, which modern connotation is exactly what
was intended by the eminent framers of the 1987 Constitution. Moreover, Justice Padilla's No blade shall touch his skin;
definition would require generally a habitual law practice, perhaps practised two or three
times a week and would outlaw say, law practice once or twice a year for ten consecutive
years. Clearly, this is far from the constitutional intent. No blood shall flow from his veins.

Upon the other hand, the separate opinion of Justice Isagani Cruz states that in my written opinion, I When Samson (his long hair cut by Delilah) was captured, the procurator placed an iron rod burning
made use of a definition of law practice which really means nothing because the definition says that white-hot two or three inches away from in front of Samson's eyes. This blinded the man. Upon hearing
law practice " . . . is what people ordinarily mean by the practice of law." True I cited the definition but of what had happened to her beloved, Delilah was beside herself with anger, and fuming with righteous
only by way of sarcasm as evident from my statement that the definition of law practice by "traditional fury, accused the procurator of reneging on his word. The procurator calmly replied: "Did any blade
areas of law practice is essentially tautologous" or defining a phrase by means of the phrase itself that touch his skin? Did any blood flow from his veins?" The procurator was clearly relying on the letter, not
is being defined. the spirit of the agreement.

Justice Cruz goes on to say in substance that since the law covers almost all situations, most In view of the foregoing, this petition is hereby DISMISSED.
individuals, in making use of the law, or in advising others on what the law means, are actually
practicing law. In that sense, perhaps, but we should not lose sight of the fact that Mr. Monsod is a
SO ORDERED.
lawyer, a member of the Philippine Bar, who has been practising law for over ten years. This is
different from the acts of persons practising law, without first becoming lawyers.
Fernan, C.J., Griño-Aquino and Medialdea, JJ., concur.
Feliciano, J., I certify that he voted to dismiss the petition. (Fernan, C.J.)
Justice Cruz also says that the Supreme Court can even disqualify an elected President of the
Philippines, say, on the ground that he lacks one or more qualifications. This matter, I greatly doubt.
For one thing, how can an action or petition be brought against the President? And even assuming that Sarmiento, J., is on leave.
he is indeed disqualified, how can the action be entertained since he is the incumbent President?
Regalado, and Davide, Jr., J., took no part.
We now proceed:

The Commission on the basis of evidence submitted doling the public hearings on Monsod's
confirmation, implicitly determined that he possessed the necessary qualifications as required by law.
The judgment rendered by the Commission in the exercise of such an acknowledged power is beyond
judicial interference except only upon a clear showing of a grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack
or excess of jurisdiction. (Art. VIII, Sec. 1 Constitution). Thus, only where such grave abuse of
discretion is clearly shown shall the Court interfere with the Commission's judgment. In the instant
case, there is no occasion for the exercise of the Court's corrective power, since no abuse, much less
a grave abuse of discretion, that would amount to lack or excess of jurisdiction and would warrant the
issuance of the writs prayed, for has been clearly shown.

Additionally, consider the following:

(1) If the Commission on Appointments rejects a nominee by the President, may the
Supreme Court reverse the Commission, and thus in effect confirm the appointment?
Clearly, the answer is in the negative.

(2) In the same vein, may the Court reject the nominee, whom the Commission
has confirmed? The answer is likewise clear.

(3) If the United States Senate (which is the confirming body in the U.S. Congress) decides
to confirm a Presidential nominee, it would be incredible that the U.S. Supreme Court would
still reverse the U.S. Senate.
Republic of the Philippines agent or a friend to protect her rights in the civil action which was impliedly instituted
SUPREME COURT together with the criminal action.
Manila
In view of the foregoing, this Court holds that Asst. City Attorney Ariston D. Fule may appear
EN BANC before the Justice of the Peace Court of Alaminos, Laguna as private prosecutor in this
criminal case as an agent or a friend of the offended party.
G.R. No. L-19450 May 27, 1965
WHEREFORE, the appeal from the order of the Justice of the Peace Court of Alaminos,
Laguna, allowing the apprearance of Ariston D. Fule as private prosecutor is dismissed,
THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, without costs.
vs.
SIMPLICIO VILLANUEVA, defendant-appellant.
The above decision is the subject of the instant proceeding.
Office of the Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee.
Magno T. Buese for defendant-appellant. The appeal should be dismissed, for patently being without merits.1äwphï1.ñët

PAREDES, J.: Aside from the considerations advanced by the learned trial judge, heretofore reproduced, and which
we consider plausible, the fallacy of the theory of defense counsel lies in his confused interpretation of
Section 32 of Rule 127 (now Sec. 35, Rule 138, Revised Rules), which provides that "no judge or other
On September 4, 1959, the Chief of Police of Alaminos, Laguna, charged Simplicio Villanueva with the official or employee of the superior courts or of the office of the Solicitor General, shall engage in
Crime of Malicious Mischief before the Justice of the Peace Court of said municipality. Said accused private practice as a member of the bar or give professional advice to clients." He claims that City
was represented by counsel de officio but later on replaced by counsel de parte. The complainant in Attorney Fule, in appearing as private prosecutor in the case was engaging in private practice. We
the same case was represented by City Attorney Ariston Fule of San Pablo City, having entered his believe that the isolated appearance of City Attorney Fule did not constitute private practice within the
appearance as private prosecutor, after securing the permission of the Secretary of Justice. The meaning and contemplation of the Rules. Practice is more than an isolated appearance, for it consists
condition of his appearance as such, was that every time he would appear at the trial of the case, he in frequent or customary actions, a succession of acts of the same kind. In other words, it is frequent
would be considered on official leave of absence, and that he would not receive any payment for his habitual exercise (State vs. Cotner, 127, p. 1, 87 Kan. 864, 42 LRA, M.S. 768). Practice of law to fall
services. The appearance of City Attorney Fule as private prosecutor was questioned by the counsel within the prohibition of statute has been interpreted as customarily or habitually holding one's self out
for the accused, invoking the case of Aquino, et al. vs. Blanco, et al., to the public, as customarily and demanding payment for such services (State vs. Bryan, 4 S.E. 522,
L-1532, Nov. 28, 1947, wherein it was ruled that "when an attorney had been appointed to the position 98 N.C. 644, 647). The appearance as counsel on one occasion is not conclusive as determinative of
of Assistant Provincial Fiscal or City Fiscal and therein qualified, by operation of law, he ceased to engagement in the private practice of law. The following observation of the Solicitor General is
engage in private law practice." Counsel then argued that the JP Court in entertaining the appearance noteworthy:
of City Attorney Fule in the case is a violation of the above ruling. On December 17, 1960 the JP
issued an order sustaining the legality of the appearance of City Attorney Fule.
Essentially, the word private practice of law implies that one must have presented himself to
be in the active and continued practice of the legal profession and that his professional
Under date of January 4, 1961, counsel for the accused presented a "Motion to Inhibit Fiscal Fule from services are available to the public for a compensation, as a source of his livelihood or in
Acting as Private Prosecutor in this Case," this time invoking Section 32, Rule 27, now Sec. 35, Rule consideration of his said services.
138, Revised Rules of Court, which bars certain attorneys from practicing. Counsel claims that City
Attorney Fule falls under this limitation. The JP Court ruled on the motion by upholding the right of Fule
to appear and further stating that he (Fule) was not actually enagaged in private law practice. This For one thing, it has never been refuted that City Attorney Fule had been given permission by his
Order was appealed to the CFI of Laguna, presided by the Hon. Hilarion U. Jarencio, which rendered immediate superior, the Secretary of Justice, to represent the complainant in the case at bar, who is a
judgment on December 20, 1961, the pertinent portions of which read: relative.

The present case is one for malicious mischief. There being no reservation by the offended CONFORMABLY WITH ALL THE FOREGOING, the decision appealed from should be, as it is hereby
party of the civil liability, the civil action was deemed impliedly instituted with the criminal affirmed, in all respects, with costs against appellant..
action. The offended party had, therefore, the right to intervene in the case and be
represented by a legal counsel because of her interest in the civil liability of the accused.
Bengzon, C.J., Concepcion, Reyes, J.B.L., Barrera, Dizon, Regala, Makalintal, Bengzon, J.P., and
Zaldivar, JJ., concur.
Sec. 31, Rule 127 of the Rules of Court provides that in the court of a justice of the peace a Bautista Angelo, J., took no part.
party may conduct his litigation in person, with the aid of an agent or friend appointed by
him for that purpose, or with the aid of an attorney. Assistant City Attorney Fule appeared in
the Justice of the Peace Court as an agent or friend of the offended party. It does not
appear that he was being paid for his services or that his appearance was in a professional
capacity. As Assistant City Attorney of San Pablo he had no control or intervention
whatsoever in the prosecution of crimes committed in the municipality of Alaminos, Laguna,
because the prosecution of criminal cases coming from Alaminos are handled by the Office
of the Provincial Fiscal and not by the City Attornev of San Pablo. There could be no
possible conflict in the duties of Assistant City Attorney Fule as Assistant City Attorney of
San Pablo and as private prosecutor in this criminal case. On the other hand, as already
pointed out, the offended party in this criminal case had a right to be represented by an
Republic of the Philippines Although as already stated, the Director of Patents, in the past, would appear to have been holding
SUPREME COURT tests or examinations the passing of which was imposed as a required qualification to practice before
Manila the Patent Office, to our knowledge, this is the first time that the right of the Director of Patents to do
so, specially as regards members of the bar, has been questioned formally, or otherwise put in issue.
And we have given it careful thought and consideration.
EN BANC

The Supreme Court has the exclusive and constitutional power with respect to admission to the
G.R. No. L-12426 February 16, 1959 practice of law in the Philippines1 and to any member of the Philippine Bar in good standing may
practice law anywhere and before any entity, whether judicial or quasi-judicial or administrative, in the
PHILIPPINE LAWYER'S ASSOCIATION, petitioner, Philippines. Naturally, the question arises as to whether or not appearance before the patent Office
vs. and the preparation and the prosecution of patent applications, etc., constitutes or is included in the
CELEDONIO AGRAVA, in his capacity as Director of the Philippines Patent Office, respondent. practice of law.

Arturo A. Alafriz for petitioner. The practice of law is not limited to the conduct of cases or litigation in court; it embraces
Office of the Solicitor General Ambrosio Padilla and Solicitor Pacifico P. de Castro for respondent. the preparation of pleadings and other papers incident to actions and social proceedings,
the management of such actions and proceedings on behalf of clients before judges and
courts, and in addition, conveying. In general, all advice to clients, and all action taken for
MONTEMAYOR, J.: them in matters connected with the law corporation services, assessment and
condemnation services contemplating an appearance before a judicial body, the foreclosure
of a mortgage, enforcement of a creditor's claim in bankruptcy and insolvency proceedings,
This is the petition filed by the Philippine Lawyer's Association for prohibition and injunction against
and conducting proceedings in attachment, and in matters of estate and guardianship have
Celedonio Agrava, in his capacity as Director of the Philippines Patent Office.
been held to constitute law practice as do the preparation and drafting of legal
instruments, where the work done involves the determination by the trained legal mind of
On may 27, 1957, respondent Director issued a circular announcing that he had scheduled for June the legal effect of facts and conditions. (5 Am. Jur. p. 262, 263). (Emphasis supplied).
27, 1957 an examination for the purpose of determining who are qualified to practice as patent
attorneys before the Philippines Patent Office, the said examination to cover patent law and
Practice of law under modern conditions consists in no small part of work performed outside
jurisprudence and the rules of practice before said office. According to the circular, members of the
of any court and having no immediate relation to proceedings in court. It embraces
Philippine Bar, engineers and other persons with sufficient scientific and technical training are qualified
conveyancing, the giving of legal advice on a large variety of subjects, and the preparation
to take the said examination. It would appear that heretofore, respondent Director has been holding
and execution of legal instruments covering an extensive field of business and trust
similar examinations.
relations and other affairs. Although these transactions may have no direct connection with
court proceedings, they are always subject to become involved in litigation. They require in
It is the contention of the petitioner Philippine Lawyer's Association that one who has passed the bar many aspects a high degree of legal skill, a wide experience with men and affairs, and great
examinations and is licensed by the Supreme Court to practice law in the Philippines and who is in capacity for adaptation to difficult and complex situations. These customary functions of an
good standing, is duly qualified to practice before the Philippines Patent Office, and that consequently, attorney or counselor at law bear an intimate relation to the administration of justice by the
the cat of the respondent Director requiring members of the Philippine Bar in good standing to take and courts. No valid distinction, so far as concerns the question set forth in the order, can be
pass an examination given by the Patent Office as a condition precedent to their being allowed to drawn between that part which involves advice and drafting of instruments in his office. It is
practice before said office, such as representing applicants in the preparation and prosecution of of importance to the welfare of the public that these manifold customary functions be
applications for patent, is in excess of his jurisdiction and is in violation of the law. performed by persons possessed of adequate learning and skill, of sound moral character,
and acting at all times under the heavy trust obligations to clients which rests upon all
attorneys. (Moran, Comments on the Rules of Court, Vol. 3 (1953 ed.), p. 665-666, citing In
In his answer, respondent Director, through the Solicitor General, maintains that the prosecution of re Opinion of the Justices (Mass.), 194 N.E. 313, quoted in Rhode Is. Bar Assoc. vs.
patent cases "does not involve entirely or purely the practice of law but includes the application of Automobile Service Assoc. (R. I. ) 179 A. 139, 144). (Emphasis ours).
scientific and technical knowledge and training, so much so that, as a matter of actual practice, the
prosecution of patent cases may be handled not only by lawyers, but also engineers and other persons
with sufficient scientific and technical training who pass the prescribed examinations as given by the In our opinion, the practice of law includes such appearance before the Patent Office, the
Patent Office; . . . that the Rules of Court do not prohibit the Patent Office, or any other quasi-judicial representation of applicants, oppositors, and other persons, and the prosecution of their applications
body from requiring further condition or qualification from those who would wish to handle cases before for patent, their oppositions thereto, or the enforcement of their rights in patent cases. In the first place,
the Patent Office which, as stated in the preceding paragraph, requires more of an application of although the transaction of business in the Patent Office involves the use and application of technical
scientific and technical knowledge than the mere application of provisions of law; . . . that the action and scientific knowledge and training, still, all such business has to be rendered in accordance with the
taken by the respondent is in accordance with Republic Act No. 165, otherwise known as the Patent Patent Law, as well as other laws, including the Rules and Regulations promulgated by the Patent
Law of the Philippines, which similar to the United States Patent Law, in accordance with which the Office in accordance with law. Not only this, but practice before the Patent Office involves the
United States Patent Office has also prescribed a similar examination as that prescribed by interpretation and application of other laws and legal principles, as well as the existence of facts to be
respondent. . . . established in accordance with the law of evidence and procedure. For instance: Section 8 of our
Patent Law provides that an invention shall not be patentable if it is contrary to public order or morals,
or to public health or welfare. Section 9 says that an invention shall not be considered new or
Respondent further contends that just as the Patent law of the United States of America authorizes the patentable if it was known or used by others in the Philippines before the invention thereof by the
Commissioner of Patents to prescribe examinations to determine as to who practice before the United inventor named in any printed publication in the Philippines or any foreign country more than one year
States Patent Office, the respondent, is similarly authorized to do so by our Patent Law, Republic Act before the application for a patent therefor, or if it had been in public use or on sale in the Philippines
No. 165. for more than one year before the application for the patent therefor. Section 10 provides that the right
to patent belongs to the true and actual inventor, his heirs, legal representatives or assigns. Section 25
and 26 refer to connection of any mistake in a patent. Section 28 enumerates the grounds for
cancellation of a patent; that although any person may apply for such cancellation, under Section 29, the bar. He contends that our Patent Law, Republic Act No. 165, is patterned after the United States
the Solicitor General is authorized to petition for the cancellation of a patent. Section 30 mentions the Patent Law; and of the United States Patent Office in Patent Cases prescribes an examination similar
requirements of a petition for cancellation. Section 31 and 32 provide for a notice of hearing of the to that which he (respondent) has prescribed and scheduled. He invites our attention to the following
petition for cancellation of the patent by the Director of Patents in case the said cancellation is provisions of said Rules of Practice:
warranted. Under Section 34, at any time after the expiration of three years from the day the patent
was granted, any person patent on several grounds, such as, if the patented invention is not being
worked in the Philippines on a commercial scale, or if the demand for the patented article in the Registration of attorneys and agents. — A register of an attorneys and a register agents are
Philippines on a commercial scale, or if the demand for the patented article in the Philippines is not kept in the Patent Office on which are entered the names of all persons recognized as
being met to an adequate extent and reasonable terms, or if by reason of the patentee's refusal to entitled to represent applicants before the Patent Office in the preparation and prosecution
grant a license on reasonable terms or by reason of the condition attached by him to the license, of applicants for patent. Registration in the Patent Office under the provisions of these rules
purchase or use of the patented article or working of the patented process or machine of production, shall only entitle the person registered to practice before the Patent Office.
the establishment of a new trade or industry in the Philippines is prevented; or if the patent or invention
relates to food or medicine or is necessary to public health or public safety. All these things involve the (a) Attorney at law. — Any attorney at law in good standing admitted to practice before any
applications of laws, legal principles, practice and procedure. They call for legal knowledge, training United States Court or the highest court of any State or Territory of the United States who
and experience for which a member of the bar has been prepared. fulfills the requirements and complied with the provisions of these rules may be admitted to
practice before the Patent Office and have his name entered on the register of attorneys.
In support of the proposition that much of the business and many of the act, orders and decisions of
the Patent Director involve questions of law or a reasonable and correct evaluation of facts, the very xxx xxx xxx
Patent Law, Republic Act No. 165, Section 61, provides that:

(c) Requirement for registration. — No person will be admitted to practice and register
. . . . The applicant for a patent or for the registration of a design, any party to a proceeding unless he shall apply to the Commissioner of Patents in writing on a prescribed form
to cancel a patent or to obtain a compulsory license, and any party to any other proceeding supplied by the Commissioner and furnish all requested information and material; and shall
in the Office may appeal to the Supreme Court from any final order or decision of the establish to the satisfaction of the Commissioner that he is of good moral character and of
director. good repute and possessed of the legal and scientific and technical qualifications necessary
to enable him to render applicants for patent valuable service, and is otherwise competent
In other words, the appeal is taken to this Tribunal. If the transaction of business in the Patent Office to advise and assist him in the presentation and prosecution of their application before the
and the acts, orders and decisions of the Patent Director involved exclusively or mostly technical and Patent Office. In order that the Commissioner may determine whether a person seeking to
scientific knowledge and training, then logically, the appeal should be taken not to a court or judicial have his name placed upon either of the registers has the qualifications specified,
body, but rather to a board of scientists, engineers or technical men, which is not the case. satisfactory proof of good moral character and repute, and of sufficient basic training in
scientific and technical matters must be submitted and an examination which is held from
time to time must be taken and passed. The taking of an examination may be waived in the
Another aspect of the question involves the consideration of the nature of the functions and acts of the case of any person who has served for three years in the examining corps of the Patent
Head of the Patent Office. Office.

. . . . The Commissioner, in issuing or withholding patents, in reissues, interferences, and Respondent states that the promulgation of the Rules of Practice of the United States Patent Office in
extensions, exercises quasi-judicial functions. Patents are public records, and it is the duty Patent Cases is authorized by the United States Patent Law itself, which reads as follows:
of the Commissioner to give authenticated copies to any person, on payment of the legal
fees. (40 Am. Jur. 537). (Emphasis supplied).
The Commissioner of Patents, subject to the approval of the Secretary of Commerce may
prescribe rules and regulations governing the recognition of agents, attorneys, or other
. . . . The Commissioner has the only original initiatory jurisdiction that exists up to the persons representing applicants or other parties before his office, and may require of such
granting and delivering of a patent, and it is his duty to decide whether the patent is new persons, agents, or attorneys, before being recognized as representatives of applicants or
and whether it is the proper subject of a patent; and his action in awarding or refusing a other persons, that they shall show they are of good moral character and in good repute,
patent is a judicial function. In passing on an application the commissioner should decide are possessed of the necessary qualifications to enable them to render to applicants or
not only questions of law, but also questions of fact, as whether there has been a prior other persons valuable service, and are likewise to competent to advise and assist
public use or sale of the article invented. . . . (60 C.J.S. 460). (Emphasis supplied). applicants or other persons in the presentation or prosecution of their applications or other
business before the Office. The Commissioner of Patents may, after notice and opportunity
for a hearing, suspend or exclude, either generally or in any particular case from further
The Director of Patents, exercising as he does judicial or quasi-judicial functions, it is reasonable to practice before his office any person, agent or attorney shown to be incompetent or
hold that a member of the bar, because of his legal knowledge and training, should be allowed to disreputable, or guilty of gross misconduct, or who refuses to comply with the said rules and
practice before the Patent Office, without further examination or other qualification. Of course, the regulations, or who shall, with intent to defraud in any matter, deceive, mislead, or threaten
Director of Patents, if he deems it advisable or necessary, may require that members of the bar any applicant or prospective applicant, or other person having immediate or prospective
practising before him enlist the assistance of technical men and scientist in the preparation of papers applicant, or other person having immediate or prospective business before the office, by
and documents, such as, the drawing or technical description of an invention or machine sought to be word, circular, letter, or by advertising. The reasons for any such suspension or exclusion
patented, in the same way that a lawyer filing an application for the registration of a parcel of land on shall be duly recorded. The action of the Commissioner may be reviewed upon the petition
behalf of his clients, is required to submit a plan and technical description of said land, prepared by a of the person so refused recognition or so suspended by the district court of the United
licensed surveyor. States for the District of Columbia under such conditions and upon such proceedings as the
said court may by its rules determine. (Emphasis supplied)
But respondent Director claims that he is expressly authorized by the law to require persons desiring to
practice or to do business before him to submit an examination, even if they are already members of
Respondent Director concludes that Section 78 of Republic Act No. 165 being similar to the provisions
of law just reproduced, then he is authorized to prescribe the rules and regulations requiring that
persons desiring to practice before him should submit to and pass an examination. We reproduce said
Section 78, Republic Act No. 165, for purposes of comparison:

SEC. 78. Rules and regulations. — The Director subject to the approval of the Secretary of
Justice, shall promulgate the necessary rules and regulations, not inconsistent with law, for
the conduct of all business in the Patent Office.

The above provisions of Section 78 certainly and by far, are different from the provisions of the United
States Patent Law as regards authority to hold examinations to determine the qualifications of those
allowed to practice before the Patent Office. While the U.S. Patent Law authorizes the Commissioner
of Patents to require attorneys to show that they possess the necessary qualifications and competence
to render valuable service to and advise and assist their clients in patent cases, which showing may
take the form of a test or examination to be held by the Commissioner, our Patent Law, Section 78, is
silent on this important point. Our attention has not been called to any express provision of our Patent
Law, giving such authority to determine the qualifications of persons allowed to practice before the
Patent Office.

Section 551 of the Revised Administrative Code authorizes every chief of bureau to prescribe forms
and make regulations or general orders not inconsistent with law, to secure the harmonious and
efficient administration of his branch of the service and to carry into full effect the laws relating to
matters within the jurisdiction of his bureau. Section 608 of Republic Act 1937, known as the Tariff and
Customs Code of the Philippines, provides that the Commissioner of Customs shall, subject to the
approval of the Department Head, makes all rules and regulations necessary to enforce the provisions
of said code. Section 338 of the National Internal Revenue Code, Commonwealth Act No. 466 as
amended, states that the Secretary of Finance, upon recommendation of the Collector of Internal
Revenue, shall promulgate all needful rules and regulations for the effective enforcement of the
provisions of the code. We understand that rules and regulations have been promulgated not only for
the Bureau of Customs and Internal Revenue, but also for other bureaus of the Government, to govern
the transaction of business in and to enforce the law for said bureaus.

Were we to allow the Patent Office, in the absence of an express and clear provision of law giving the
necessary sanction, to require lawyers to submit to and pass on examination prescribed by it before
they are allowed to practice before said Patent Office, then there would be no reason why other
bureaus specially the Bureau of Internal Revenue and Customs, where the business in the same area
are more or less complicated, such as the presentation of books of accounts, balance sheets, etc.,
assessments exemptions, depreciation, these as regards the Bureau of Internal Revenue, and the
classification of goods, imposition of customs duties, seizures, confiscation, etc., as regards the
Bureau of Customs, may not also require that any lawyer practising before them or otherwise
transacting business with them on behalf of clients, shall first pass an examination to qualify.

In conclusion, we hold that under the present law, members of the Philippine Bar authorized by this
Tribunal to practice law, and in good standing, may practice their profession before the Patent Office,
for the reason that much of the business in said office involves the interpretation and determination of
the scope and application of the Patent Law and other laws applicable, as well as the presentation of
evidence to establish facts involved; that part of the functions of the Patent director are judicial or
quasi-judicial, so much so that appeals from his orders and decisions are, under the law, taken to the
Supreme Court.

For the foregoing reasons, the petition for prohibition is granted and the respondent Director is hereby
prohibited from requiring members of the Philippine Bar to submit to an examination or tests and pass
the same before being permitted to appear and practice before the Patent Office. No costs.

Paras, C.J., Bengzon, Padilla, Reyes, A., Bautista Angelo, Labrador, Concepcion, Reyes, J.B.L. and
Endencia, JJ.,concur.
Republic of the Philippines the nineteen hundred and fifty-three bar examinations; seventy-three per cent in the
SUPREME COURT nineteen hundred and fifty-four bar examinations; seventy-four per cent in the nineteen
Manila hundred and fifty-five bar examinations without a candidate obtaining a grade below fifty per
cent in any subject, shall be allowed to take and subscribe the corresponding oath of office
as member of the Philippine Bar: Provided, however, That for the purpose of this Act, any
EN BANC exact one-half or more of a fraction, shall be considered as one and included as part of the
next whole number.
Resolution March 18, 1954
SEC. 2. Any bar candidate who obtained a grade of seventy-five per cent in any subject in
In the Matter of the Petitions for Admission to the Bar of Unsuccessful Candidates of 1946 to any bar examination after July fourth, nineteen hundred and forty-six shall be deemed to
1953; have passed in such subject or subjects and such grade or grades shall be included in
ALBINO CUNANAN, ET AL., petitioners. computing the passing general average that said candidate may obtain in any subsequent
examinations that he may take.

Jose M. Aruego, M.H. de Joya, Miguel R. Cornejo, and Antonio Enrile Inton for petitioners.
Office of the Solicitor General Juan R. Liwag for respondent. SEC. 3. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

DIOKNO, J.: Enacted on June 21, 1953, without the Executive approval.

In recent years few controversial issues have aroused so much public interest and concern as After its approval, many of the unsuccessful postwar candidates filed petitions for admission to the bar
Republic Act No. 972, popularly known as the "Bar Flunkers' Act of 1953." Under the Rules of Court invoking its provisions, while others whose motions for the revision of their examination papers were
governing admission to the bar, "in order that a candidate (for admission to the Bar) may be deemed to still pending also invoked the aforesaid law as an additional ground for admission. There are also
have passed his examinations successfully, he must have obtained a general average of 75 per cent in others who have sought simply the reconsideration of their grades without, however, invoking the law
all subjects, without falling below 50 per cent in any subject." (Rule 127, sec. 14, Rules of Court). in question. To avoid injustice to individual petitioners, the court first reviewed the motions for
Nevertheless, considering the varying difficulties of the different bar examinations held since 1946 and reconsideration, irrespective of whether or not they had invoked Republic Act No. 972. Unfortunately,
the varying degree of strictness with which the examination papers were graded, this court passed and the court has found no reason to revise their grades. If they are to be admitted to the bar, it must be
admitted to the bar those candidates who had obtained an average of only 72 per cent in 1946, 69 per pursuant to Republic Act No. 972 which, if declared valid, should be applied equally to all concerned
cent in 1947, 70 per cent in 1948, and 74 per cent in 1949. In 1950 to 1953, the 74 per cent was raised whether they have filed petitions or not. A complete list of the petitioners, properly classified, affected
to 75 per cent. by this decision, as well as a more detailed account of the history of Republic Act No. 972, are
appended to this decision as Annexes I and II. And to realize more readily the effects of the law, the
following statistical data are set forth:
Believing themselves as fully qualified to practice law as those reconsidered and passed by this court,
and feeling conscious of having been discriminated against (See Explanatory Note to R.A. No. 972),
unsuccessful candidates who obtained averages of a few percentage lower than those admitted to the (1) The unsuccessful bar candidates who are to be benefited by section 1 of Republic Act No. 972 total
Bar agitated in Congress for, and secured in 1951 the passage of Senate Bill No. 12 which, among 1,168, classified as follows:
others, reduced the passing general average in bar examinations to 70 per cent effective since 1946.
The President requested the views of this court on the bill. Complying with that request, seven
members of the court subscribed to and submitted written comments adverse thereto, and shortly 1946 (August) 206 121 18
thereafter the President vetoed it. Congress did not override the veto. Instead, it approved Senate Bill 1946 (November) 477 228 43
No. 371, embodying substantially the provisions of the vetoed bill. Although the members of this court
reiterated their unfavorable views on the matter, the President allowed the bill to become a law on June 1947 749 340 0
21, 1953 without his signature. The law, which incidentally was enacted in an election year, reads in 1948 899 409 11
full as follows:
1949 1,218 532 164

REPUBLIC ACT NO. 972 1950 1,316 893 26


1951 2,068 879 196
AN ACT TO FIX THE PASSING MARKS FOR BAR EXAMINATIONS FROM 1952 2,738 1,033 426
NINETEEN HUNDRED AND FORTY-SIX UP TO AND INCLUDING NINETEEN
HUNDRED AND FIFTY-FIVE. 1953 2,555 968 284
TOTAL 12,230 5,421 1,168
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in
Congress assembled: Of the total 1,168 candidates, 92 have passed in subsequent examination, and only 586 have filed
either motions for admission to the bar pursuant to said Republic Act, or mere motions for
SECTION 1. Notwithstanding the provisions of section fourteen, Rule numbered one reconsideration.
hundred twenty-seven of the Rules of Court, any bar candidate who obtained a general
average of seventy per cent in any bar examinations after July fourth, nineteen hundred and (2) In addition, some other 10 unsuccessful candidates are to be benefited by section 2 of said
forty-six up to the August nineteen hundred and fifty-one bar examinations; seventy-one per Republic Act. These candidates had each taken from two to five different examinations, but failed to
cent in the nineteen hundred and fifty-two bar examinations; seventy-two per cent in the in obtain a passing average in any of them. Consolidating, however, their highest grades in different
subjects in previous examinations, with their latest marks, they would be sufficient to reach the passing some even with revised and enlarged editions have been printed locally during those periods. A new
average as provided for by Republic Act No. 972. set of Philippine Reports began to be published since 1946, which continued to be supplemented by
the addition of new volumes. Those are facts of public knowledge.
(3) The total number of candidates to be benefited by this Republic Acts is therefore 1,094, of which
only 604 have filed petitions. Of these 604 petitioners, 33 who failed in 1946 to 1951 had individually Notwithstanding all these, if the law in question is valid, it has to be enforced.
presented motions for reconsideration which were denied, while 125 unsuccessful candidates of 1952,
and 56 of 1953, had presented similar motions, which are still pending because they could be favorably
affected by Republic Act No. 972, — although as has been already stated, this tribunal finds no The question is not new in its fundamental aspect or from the point of view of applicable principles, but
sufficient reasons to reconsider their grades the resolution of the question would have been easier had an identical case of similar background
been picked out from the jurisprudence we daily consult. Is there any precedent in the long Anglo-
Saxon legal history, from which has been directly derived the judicial system established here with its
UNCONSTITUTIONALITY OF REPUBLIC ACT NO. 972 lofty ideals by the Congress of the United States, and which we have preserved and attempted to
improve, or in our contemporaneous judicial history of more than half a century? From the citations of
those defending the law, we can not find a case in which the validity of a similar law had been
Having been called upon to enforce a law of far-reaching effects on the practice of the legal profession sustained, while those against its validity cite, among others, the cases of Day (In re Day, 54 NE 646),
and the administration of justice, and because some doubts have been expressed as to its validity, the of Cannon (State vs. Cannon, 240 NW, 441), the opinion of the Supreme Court of Massachusetts in
court set the hearing of the afore-mentioned petitions for admission on the sole question of whether or 1932 (81 ALR 1061), of Guariña (24 Phil., 37), aside from the opinion of the President which is
not Republic Act No. 972 is constitutional. expressed in his vote of the original bill and which the postponement of the contested law respects.

We have been enlightened in the study of this question by the brilliant assistance of the members of This law has no precedent in its favor. When similar laws in other countries had been promulgated, the
the bar who have amply argued, orally an in writing, on the various aspects in which the question may judiciary immediately declared them without force or effect. It is not within our power to offer a
be gleaned. The valuable studies of Messrs. E. Voltaire Garcia, Vicente J. Francisco, Vicente Pelaez precedent to uphold the disputed law.
and Buenaventura Evangelista, in favor of the validity of the law, and of the U.P. Women's Lawyers'
Circle, the Solicitor General, Messrs. Arturo A. Alafriz, Enrique M. Fernando, Vicente Abad Santos,
Carlos A. Barrios, Vicente del Rosario, Juan de Blancaflor, Mamerto V. Gonzales, and Roman Ozaeta To be exact, we ought to state here that we have examined carefully the case that has been cited to us
against it, aside from the memoranda of counsel for petitioners, Messrs. Jose M. Aruego, M.H. de as a favorable precedent of the law — that of Cooper (22 NY, 81), where the Court of Appeals of New
Joya, Miguel R. Cornejo and Antonio Enrile Inton, and of petitioners Cabrera, Macasaet and Galema York revoked the decision of the Supreme court of that State, denying the petition of Cooper to be
themselves, has greatly helped us in this task. The legal researchers of the court have exhausted admitted to the practice of law under the provisions of a statute concerning the school of law of
almost all Philippine and American jurisprudence on the matter. The question has been the object of Columbia College promulgated on April 7, 1860, which was declared by the Court of Appeals to be
intense deliberation for a long time by the Tribunal, and finally, after the voting, the preparation of the consistent with the Constitution of the state of New York.
majority opinion was assigned to a new member in order to place it as humanly as possible above all
suspicion of prejudice or partiality.
It appears that the Constitution of New York at that time provided:

Republic Act No. 972 has for its object, according to its author, to admit to the Bar, those candidates
who suffered from insufficiency of reading materials and inadequate preparation. Quoting a portion of They (i.e., the judges) shall not hold any other office of public trust. All votes for either of
the Explanatory Note of the proposed bill, its author Honorable Senator Pablo Angeles David stated: them for any elective office except that of the Court of Appeals, given by the Legislature or
the people, shall be void. They shall not exercise any power of appointment to public office.
Any male citizen of the age of twenty-one years, of good moral character, and who
The reason for relaxing the standard 75 per cent passing grade is the tremendous handicap possesses the requisite qualifications of learning and ability, shall be entitled to admission to
which students during the years immediately after the Japanese occupation has to practice in all the courts of this State. (p. 93).
overcome such as the insufficiency of reading materials and the inadequacy of the
preparation of students who took up law soon after the liberation.
According to the Court of Appeals, the object of the constitutional precept is as follows:

Of the 9,675 candidates who took the examinations from 1946 to 1952, 5,236 passed. And now it is
claimed that in addition 604 candidates be admitted (which in reality total 1,094), because they Attorneys, solicitors, etc., were public officers; the power of appointing them had previously
suffered from "insufficiency of reading materials" and of "inadequacy of preparation." rested with the judges, and this was the principal appointing power which they possessed.
The convention was evidently dissatisfied with the manner in which this power had been
exercised, and with the restrictions which the judges had imposed upon admission to
By its declared objective, the law is contrary to public interest because it qualifies 1,094 law graduates practice before them. The prohibitory clause in the section quoted was aimed directly at this
who confessedly had inadequate preparation for the practice of the profession, as was exactly found power, and the insertion of the provision" expecting the admission of attorneys, in this
by this Tribunal in the aforesaid examinations. The public interest demands of legal profession particular section of the Constitution, evidently arose from its connection with the object of
adequate preparation and efficiency, precisely more so as legal problem evolved by the times become this prohibitory clause. There is nothing indicative of confidence in the courts or of a
more difficult. An adequate legal preparation is one of the vital requisites for the practice of law that disposition to preserve any portion of their power over this subject, unless the Supreme
should be developed constantly and maintained firmly. To the legal profession is entrusted the Court is right in the inference it draws from the use of the word `admission' in the action
protection of property, life, honor and civil liberties. To approve officially of those inadequately prepared referred to. It is urged that the admission spoken of must be by the court; that to admit
individuals to dedicate themselves to such a delicate mission is to create a serious social danger. means to grant leave, and that the power of granting necessarily implies the power of
Moreover, the statement that there was an insufficiency of legal reading materials is grossly refusing, and of course the right of determining whether the applicant possesses the
exaggerated. There were abundant materials. Decisions of this court alone in mimeographed copies requisite qualifications to entitle him to admission.
were made available to the public during those years and private enterprises had also published them
in monthly magazines and annual digests. The Official Gazette had been published continuously.
Books and magazines published abroad have entered without restriction since 1945. Many law books, These positions may all be conceded, without affecting the validity of the act. (p. 93.)
Now, with respect to the law of April 7, 1860, the decision seems to indicate that it provided that the by our Constitution to repeal, alter supplement the rules promulgated by this Court regarding the
possession of a diploma of the school of law of Columbia College conferring the degree of Bachelor of admission to the practice of law, to our judgment and proposition that the admission, suspension,
Laws was evidence of the legal qualifications that the constitution required of applicants for admission disbarment and reinstatement of the attorneys at law is a legislative function, properly belonging to
to the Bar. The decision does not however quote the text of the law, which we cannot find in any public Congress, is unacceptable. The function requires (1) previously established rules and principles, (2)
or accessible private library in the country. concrete facts, whether past or present, affecting determinate individuals. and (3) decision as to
whether these facts are governed by the rules and principles; in effect, a judicial function of the highest
degree. And it becomes more undisputably judicial, and not legislative, if previous judicial resolutions
In the case of Cooper, supra, to make the law consistent with the Constitution of New York, the Court on the petitions of these same individuals are attempted to be revoked or modified.
of Appeals said of the object of the law:

We have said that in the judicial system from which ours has been derived, the act of admitting,
The motive for passing the act in question is apparent. Columbia College being an suspending, disbarring and reinstating attorneys at law in the practice of the profession is concededly
institution of established reputation, and having a law department under the charge of able judicial. A comprehensive and conscientious study of this matter had been undertaken in the case of
professors, the students in which department were not only subjected to a formal State vs. Cannon (1932) 240 NW 441, in which the validity of a legislative enactment providing that
examination by the law committee of the institution, but to a certain definite period of study Cannon be permitted to practice before the courts was discussed. From the text of this decision we
before being entitled to a diploma of being graduates, the Legislature evidently, and no quote the following paragraphs:
doubt justly, considered this examination, together with the preliminary study required by the
act, as fully equivalent as a test of legal requirements, to the ordinary examination by the
court; and as rendering the latter examination, to which no definite period of preliminary This statute presents an assertion of legislative power without parallel in the history of the
study was essential, unnecessary and burdensome. English speaking people so far as we have been able to ascertain. There has been much
uncertainty as to the extent of the power of the Legislature to prescribe the ultimate
qualifications of attorney at law has been expressly committed to the courts, and the act of
The act was obviously passed with reference to the learning and ability of the applicant, and admission has always been regarded as a judicial function. This act purports to constitute
for the mere purpose of substituting the examination by the law committee of the college for Mr. Cannon an attorney at law, and in this respect it stands alone as an assertion of
that of the court. It could have had no other object, and hence no greater scope should be legislative power. (p. 444)
given to its provisions. We cannot suppose that the Legislature designed entirely to
dispense with the plain and explicit requirements of the Constitution; and the act contains
nothing whatever to indicate an intention that the authorities of the college should inquire as Under the Constitution all legislative power is vested in a Senate and Assembly. (Section 1,
to the age, citizenship, etc., of the students before granting a diploma. The only rational art. 4.) In so far as the prescribing of qualifications for admission to the bar are legislative in
interpretation of which the act admits is, that it was intended to make the college diploma character, the Legislature is acting within its constitutional authority when it sets up and
competent evidence as to the legal attainments of the applicant, and nothing else. To this prescribes such qualifications. (p. 444)
extent alone it operates as a modification of pre-existing statutes, and it is to be read in
connection with these statutes and with the Constitution itself in order to determine the
present condition of the law on the subject. (p.89) But when the Legislature has prescribed those qualifications which in its judgment will serve
the purpose of legitimate legislative solicitude, is the power of the court to impose other and
further exactions and qualifications foreclosed or exhausted? (p. 444)
xxx xxx xxx
Under our Constitution the judicial and legislative departments are distinct, independent,
The Legislature has not taken from the court its jurisdiction over the question of admission, and coordinate branches of the government. Neither branch enjoys all the powers of
that has simply prescribed what shall be competent evidence in certain cases upon that sovereignty which properly belongs to its department. Neither department should so act as
question. (p.93) to embarrass the other in the discharge of its respective functions. That was the scheme
and thought of the people setting upon the form of government under which we exist.
State vs. Hastings, 10 Wis., 525; Attorney General ex rel. Bashford vs. Barstow, 4 Wis.,
From the foregoing, the complete inapplicability of the case of Cooper with that at bar may be clearly 567. (p. 445)
seen. Please note only the following distinctions:

The judicial department of government is responsible for the plane upon which the
(1) The law of New York does not require that any candidate of Columbia College who failed in the bar administration of justice is maintained. Its responsibility in this respect is exclusive. By
examinations be admitted to the practice of law. committing a portion of the powers of sovereignty to the judicial department of our state
government, under 42a scheme which it was supposed rendered it immune from
(2) The law of New York according to the very decision of Cooper, has not taken from the court its embarrassment or interference by any other department of government, the courts cannot
jurisdiction over the question of admission of attorney at law; in effect, it does not decree the admission escape responsibility fir the manner in which the powers of sovereignty thus committed to
of any lawyer. the judicial department are exercised. (p. 445)

(3) The Constitution of New York at that time and that of the Philippines are entirely different on the The relation at the bar to the courts is a peculiar and intimate relationship. The bar is an
matter of admission of the practice of law. attache of the courts. The quality of justice dispense by the courts depends in no small
degree upon the integrity of its bar. An unfaithful bar may easily bring scandal and reproach
to the administration of justice and bring the courts themselves into disrepute. (p.445)
In the judicial system from which ours has been evolved, the admission, suspension, disbarment and
reinstatement of attorneys at law in the practice of the profession and their supervision have been
disputably a judicial function and responsibility. Because of this attribute, its continuous and zealous Through all time courts have exercised a direct and severe supervision over their bars, at
possession and exercise by the judicial power have been demonstrated during more than six centuries, least in the English speaking countries. (p. 445)
which certainly "constitutes the most solid of titles." Even considering the power granted to Congress
After explaining the history of the case, the Court ends thus: 487, 489, 60 A.L.R. 851: "Membership in the bar is a privilege burden with conditions." One
is admitted to the bar "for something more than private gain." He becomes an "officer of the
court", and ,like the court itself, an instrument or agency to advance the end of justice. His
Our conclusion may be epitomized as follows: For more than six centuries prior to the cooperation with the court is due "whenever justice would be imperiled if cooperation was
adoption of our Constitution, the courts of England, concededly subordinate to Parliament withheld." Without such attorneys at law the judicial department of government would be
since the Revolution of 1688, had exercise the right of determining who should be admitted hampered in the performance of its duties. That has been the history of attorneys under the
to the practice of law, which, as was said in Matter of the Sergeant's at Law, 6 Bingham's common law, both in this country and England. Admission to practice as an attorney at law
New Cases 235, "constitutes the most solid of all titles." If the courts and judicial power be is almost without exception conceded to be a judicial function. Petition to that end is filed in
regarded as an entity, the power to determine who should be admitted to practice law is a courts, as are other proceedings invoking judicial action. Admission to the bar is accomplish
constituent element of that entity. It may be difficult to isolate that element and say with and made open and notorious by a decision of the court entered upon its records. The
assurance that it is either a part of the inherent power of the court, or an essential element establishment by the Constitution of the judicial department conferred authority necessary to
of the judicial power exercised by the court, but that it is a power belonging to the judicial the exercise of its powers as a coordinate department of government. It is an inherent power
entity and made of not only a sovereign institution, but made of it a separate independent, of such a department of government ultimately to determine the qualifications of those to be
and coordinate branch of the government. They took this institution along with the power admitted to practice in its courts, for assisting in its work, and to protect itself in this respect
traditionally exercise to determine who should constitute its attorney at law. There is no from the unfit, those lacking in sufficient learning, and those not possessing good moral
express provision in the Constitution which indicates an intent that this traditional power of character. Chief Justice Taney stated succinctly and with finality in Ex parte Secombe, 19
the judicial department should in any manner be subject to legislative control. Perhaps the How. 9, 13, 15 L. Ed. 565, "It has been well settled, by the rules and practice of common-
dominant thought of the framers of our constitution was to make the three great law courts, that it rests exclusively with the court to determine who is qualified to become
departments of government separate and independent of one another. The idea that the one of its officers, as an attorney and counselor, and for what cause he ought to be
Legislature might embarrass the judicial department by prescribing inadequate qualifications removed." (p.727)
for attorneys at law is inconsistent with the dominant purpose of making the judicial
independent of the legislative department, and such a purpose should not be inferred in the
absence of express constitutional provisions. While the legislature may legislate with In the case of Day and others who collectively filed a petition to secure license to practice the legal
respect to the qualifications of attorneys, but is incidental merely to its general and profession by virtue of a law of state (In re Day, 54 NE 646), the court said in part:
unquestioned power to protect the public interest. When it does legislate a fixing a standard
of qualifications required of attorneys at law in order that public interests may be protected,
such qualifications do not constitute only a minimum standard and limit the class from which In the case of Ex parte Garland, 4 Wall, 333, 18 L. Ed. 366, the court, holding the test oath
the court must make its selection. Such legislative qualifications do not constitute the for attorneys to be unconstitutional, explained the nature of the attorney's office as follows:
ultimate qualifications beyond which the court cannot go in fixing additional qualifications "They are officers of the court, admitted as such by its order, upon evidence of their
deemed necessary by the course of the proper administration of judicial functions. There is possessing sufficient legal learning and fair private character. It has always been the
no legislative power to compel courts to admit to their bars persons deemed by them unfit to general practice in this country to obtain this evidence by an examination of the parties. In
exercise the prerogatives of an attorney at law. (p. 450) this court the fact of the admission of such officers in the highest court of the states to which
they, respectively, belong for, three years preceding their application, is regarded as
sufficient evidence of the possession of the requisite legal learning, and the statement of
Furthermore, it is an unlawful attempt to exercise the power of appointment. It is quite likely counsel moving their admission sufficient evidence that their private and professional
true that the legislature may exercise the power of appointment when it is in pursuance of a character is fair. The order of admission is the judgment of the court that the parties possess
legislative functions. However, the authorities are well-nigh unanimous that the power to the requisite qualifications as attorneys and counselors, and are entitled to appear as such
admit attorneys to the practice of law is a judicial function. In all of the states, except New and conduct causes therein. From its entry the parties become officers of the court, and are
Jersey (In re Reisch, 83 N.J. Eq. 82, 90 A. 12), so far as our investigation reveals, attorneys responsible to it for professional misconduct. They hold their office during good behavior,
receive their formal license to practice law by their admission as members of the bar of the and can only be deprived of it for misconduct ascertained and declared by the judgment of
court so admitting. Cor. Jur. 572; Ex parte Secombre, 19 How. 9,15 L. Ed. 565; Ex the court after opportunity to be heard has been afforded. Ex parte Hoyfron, admission or
parteGarland, 4 Wall. 333, 18 L. Ed. 366; Randall vs. Brigham, 7 Wall. 53, 19 L. Ed. 285; their exclusion is not the exercise of a mere ministerial power. It is the exercise of judicial
Hanson vs. Grattan, 48 Kan, 843, 115 P. 646, 34 L.R.A. 519; Danforth vs. Egan, 23 S. D. power, and has been so held in numerous cases. It was so held by the court of appeals of
43, 119 N.W. 1021, 130 Am. St. Rep. 1030, 20 Ann. Cas. 413. New York in the matter of the application of Cooper for admission. Re Cooper 22 N. Y. 81.
"Attorneys and Counselors", said that court, "are not only officers of the court, but officers
whose duties relate almost exclusively to proceedings of a judicial nature; and hence their
The power of admitting an attorney to practice having been perpetually exercised by the appointment may, with propriety, be entrusted to the court, and the latter, in performing his
courts, it having been so generally held that the act of the court in admitting an attorney to duty, may very justly considered as engaged in the exercise of their appropriate judicial
practice is the judgment of the court, and an attempt as this on the part of the Legislature to functions." (pp. 650-651).
confer such right upon any one being most exceedingly uncommon, it seems clear that the
licensing of an attorney is and always has been a purely judicial function, no matter where
the power to determine the qualifications may reside. (p. 451) We quote from other cases, the following pertinent portions:

In that same year of 1932, the Supreme Court of Massachusetts, in answering a consultation of the Admission to practice of law is almost without exception conceded everywhere to be the
Senate of that State, 180 NE 725, said: exercise of a judicial function, and this opinion need not be burdened with citations in this
point. Admission to practice have also been held to be the exercise of one of the inherent
powers of the court. — Re Bruen, 102 Wash. 472, 172 Pac. 906.
It is indispensible to the administration of justice and to interpretation of the laws that there
be members of the bar of sufficient ability, adequate learning and sound moral character.
This arises from the need of enlightened assistance to the honest, and restraining authority Admission to the practice of law is the exercise of a judicial function, and is an inherent
over the knavish, litigant. It is highly important, also that the public be protected from power of the court. — A.C. Brydonjack, vs. State Bar of California, 281 Pac. 1018; See
incompetent and vicious practitioners, whose opportunity for doing mischief is wide. It was Annotation on Power of Legislature respecting admission to bar, 65, A.L. R. 1512.
said by Cardoz, C.L., in People ex rel. Karlin vs. Culkin, 242 N.Y. 456, 470, 471, 162 N.E.
On this matter there is certainly a clear distinction between the functions of the judicial and legislative Being coordinate and independent branches, the power to promulgate and enforce rules for the
departments of the government. admission to the practice of law and the concurrent power to repeal, alter and supplement them may
and should be exercised with the respect that each owes to the other, giving careful consideration to
the responsibility which the nature of each department requires. These powers have existed together
The distinction between the functions of the legislative and the judicial departments is that it for centuries without diminution on each part; the harmonious delimitation being found in that the
is the province of the legislature to establish rules that shall regulate and govern in matters legislature may and should examine if the existing rules on the admission to the Bar respond to the
of transactions occurring subsequent to the legislative action, while the judiciary determines demands which public interest requires of a Bar endowed with high virtues, culture, training and
rights and obligations with reference to transactions that are past or conditions that exist at responsibility. The legislature may, by means of appeal, amendment or supplemental rules, fill up any
the time of the exercise of judicial power, and the distinction is a vital one and not subject to deficiency that it may find, and the judicial power, which has the inherent responsibility for a good and
alteration or change either by legislative action or by judicial decree. efficient administration of justice and the supervision of the practice of the legal profession, should
consider these reforms as the minimum standards for the elevation of the profession, and see to it that
The judiciary cannot consent that its province shall be invaded by either of the other with these reforms the lofty objective that is desired in the exercise of its traditional duty of admitting,
departments of the government. — 16 C.J.S., Constitutional Law, p. 229. suspending, disbarring and reinstating attorneys at law is realized. They are powers which, exercise
within their proper constitutional limits, are not repugnant, but rather complementary to each other in
attaining the establishment of a Bar that would respond to the increasing and exacting necessities of
If the legislature cannot thus indirectly control the action of the courts by requiring of them the administration of justice.
construction of the law according to its own views, it is very plain it cannot do so directly, by
settling aside their judgments, compelling them to grant new trials, ordering the discharge of
offenders, or directing what particular steps shall be taken in the progress of a judicial The case of Guariña (1913) 24 Phil., 37, illustrates our criterion. Guariña took examination and failed
inquiry. — Cooley's Constitutional Limitations, 192. by a few points to obtain the general average. A recently enacted law provided that one who had been
appointed to the position of Fiscal may be admitted to the practice of law without a previous
examination. The Government appointed Guariña and he discharged the duties of Fiscal in a remote
In decreeing the bar candidates who obtained in the bar examinations of 1946 to 1952, a general province. This tribunal refused to give his license without previous examinations. The court said:
average of 70 per cent without falling below 50 per cent in any subject, be admitted in mass to the
practice of law, the disputed law is not a legislation; it is a judgment — a judgment revoking those
promulgated by this Court during the aforecited year affecting the bar candidates concerned; and Relying upon the provisions of section 2 of Act No. 1597, the applicant in this case seeks
although this Court certainly can revoke these judgments even now, for justifiable reasons, it is no less admission to the bar, without taking the prescribed examination, on the ground that he holds
certain that only this Court, and not the legislative nor executive department, that may be so. Any the office of provincial fiscal for the Province of Batanes.
attempt on the part of any of these departments would be a clear usurpation of its functions, as is the
case with the law in question. Section 2 of Act No. 1597, enacted February 28, 1907, is as follows:

That the Constitution has conferred on Congress the power to repeal, alter or supplement the rule Sec. 2. Paragraph one of section thirteen of Act Numbered One Hundred and ninety,
promulgated by this Tribunal, concerning the admission to the practice of law, is no valid argument. entitled "An Act providing a Code of Procedure in Civil Actions and Special Proceedings in
Section 13, article VIII of the Constitution provides: the Philippine Islands," is hereby amended to read as follows:

Section 13. The Supreme Court shall have the power to promulgate rules concerning 1. Those who have been duly licensed under the laws and orders of the Islands under the
pleading, practice, and procedure in all courts, and the admission to the practice of law. sovereignty of Spain or of the United States and are in good and regular standing as
Said rules shall be uniform for all courts of the same grade and shall not diminish, increase members of the bar of the Philippine Islands at the time of the adoption of this
or modify substantive rights. The existing laws on pleading, practice and procedure are code; Provided, That any person who, prior to the passage of this act, or at any time
hereby repealed as statutes, and are declared Rules of Court, subject to the power of the thereafter, shall have held, under the authority of the United States, the position of justice of
Supreme Court to alter and modify the same. The Congress shall have the power to repeal, the Supreme Court, judge of the Court of First Instance, or judge or associate judge of the
alter, or supplement the rules concerning pleading, practice, and procedure, and the Court of Land Registration, of the Philippine Islands, or the position of Attorney General,
admission to the practice of law in the Philippines. — Constitution of the Philippines, Art. Solicitor General, Assistant Attorney General, assistant attorney in the office of the Attorney
VIII, sec. 13. General, prosecuting attorney for the City of Manila, city attorney of Manila, assistant city
attorney of Manila, provincial fiscal, attorney for the Moro Province, or assistant attorney for
It will be noted that the Constitution has not conferred on Congress and this Tribunal equal the Moro Province, may be licensed to practice law in the courts of the Philippine Islands
responsibilities concerning the admission to the practice of law. the primary power and responsibility without an examination, upon motion before the Supreme Court and establishing such fact
which the Constitution recognizes continue to reside in this Court. Had Congress found that this Court to the satisfaction of said court.
has not promulgated any rule on the matter, it would have nothing over which to exercise the power
granted to it. Congress may repeal, alter and supplement the rules promulgated by this Court, but the The records of this court disclose that on a former occasion this appellant took, and failed to
authority and responsibility over the admission, suspension, disbarment and reinstatement of attorneys pass the prescribed examination. The report of the examining board, dated March 23, 1907,
at law and their supervision remain vested in the Supreme Court. The power to repeal, alter and shows that he received an average of only 71 per cent in the various branches of legal
supplement the rules does not signify nor permit that Congress substitute or take the place of this learning upon which he was examined, thus falling four points short of the required
Tribunal in the exercise of its primary power on the matter. The Constitution does not say nor mean percentage of 75. We would be delinquent in the performance of our duty to the public and
that Congress may admit, suspend, disbar or reinstate directly attorneys at law, or a determinate group to the bar, if, in the face of this affirmative indication of the deficiency of the applicant in the
of individuals to the practice of law. Its power is limited to repeal, modify or supplement the existing required qualifications of learning in the law at the time when he presented his former
rules on the matter, if according to its judgment the need for a better service of the legal profession application for admission to the bar, we should grant him license to practice law in the courts
requires it. But this power does not relieve this Court of its responsibility to admit, suspend, disbar and of these Islands, without first satisfying ourselves that despite his failure to pass the
reinstate attorneys at law and supervise the practice of the legal profession. examination on that occasion, he now "possesses the necessary qualifications of learning
and ability."
But it is contented that under the provisions of the above-cited statute the applicant is The law in question, like those in the case of Day and Cannon, has been found also to suffer from the
entitled as of right to be admitted to the bar without taking the prescribed examination "upon fatal defect of being a class legislation, and that if it has intended to make a classification, it is arbitrary
motion before the Supreme Court" accompanied by satisfactory proof that he has held and and unreasonable.
now holds the office of provincial fiscal of the Province of Batanes. It is urged that having in
mind the object which the legislator apparently sought to attain in enacting the above-cited
amendment to the earlier statute, and in view of the context generally and especially of the In the case of Day, a law enacted on February 21, 1899 required of the Supreme Court, until
fact that the amendment was inserted as a proviso in that section of the original Act which December 31 of that year, to grant license for the practice of law to those students who began studying
specifically provides for the admission of certain candidates without examination. It is before November 4, 1897, and had studied for two years and presented a diploma issued by a school
contented that this mandatory construction is imperatively required in order to give effect to of law, or to those who had studied in a law office and would pass an examination, or to those who had
the apparent intention of the legislator, and to the candidate's claim de jure to have the studied for three years if they commenced their studies after the aforementioned date. The Supreme
power exercised. Court declared that this law was unconstitutional being, among others, a class legislation. The Court
said:

And after copying article 9 of Act of July 1, 1902 of the Congress of the United States, articles 2, 16
and 17 of Act No. 136, and articles 13 to 16 of Act 190, the Court continued: This is an application to this court for admission to the bar of this state by virtue of diplomas
from law schools issued to the applicants. The act of the general assembly passed in 1899,
under which the application is made, is entitled "An act to amend section 1 of an act entitled
Manifestly, the jurisdiction thus conferred upon this court by the commission and confirmed "An act to revise the law in relation to attorneys and counselors," approved March 28, 1884,
to it by the Act of Congress would be limited and restricted, and in a case such as that in force July 1, 1874." The amendment, so far as it appears in the enacting clause, consists
under consideration wholly destroyed, by giving the word "may," as used in the above in the addition to the section of the following: "And every application for a license who shall
citation from Act of Congress of July 1, 1902, or of any Act of Congress prescribing, defining comply with the rules of the supreme court in regard to admission to the bar in force at the
or limiting the power conferred upon the commission is to that extent invalid and void, as time such applicant commend the study of law, either in a law or office or a law school or
transcending its rightful limits and authority. college, shall be granted a license under this act notwithstanding any subsequent changes
in said rules". — In re Day et al, 54 N.Y., p. 646.
Speaking on the application of the law to those who were appointed to the positions enumerated, and
with particular emphasis in the case of Guariña, the Court held: . . . After said provision there is a double proviso, one branch of which is that up to
December 31, 1899, this court shall grant a license of admittance to the bar to the holder of
every diploma regularly issued by any law school regularly organized under the laws of this
In the various cases wherein applications for the admission to the bar under the provisions state, whose regular course of law studies is two years, and requiring an attendance by the
of this statute have been considered heretofore, we have accepted the fact that such student of at least 36 weeks in each of such years, and showing that the student began the
appointments had been made as satisfactory evidence of the qualifications of the applicant. study of law prior to November 4, 1897, and accompanied with the usual proofs of good
But in all of those cases we had reason to believe that the applicants had been practicing moral character. The other branch of the proviso is that any student who has studied law for
attorneys prior to the date of their appointment. two years in a law office, or part of such time in a law office, "and part in the aforesaid law
school," and whose course of study began prior to November 4, 1897, shall be admitted
In the case under consideration, however, it affirmatively appears that the applicant was not upon a satisfactory examination by the examining board in the branches now required by
and never had been practicing attorney in this or any other jurisdiction prior to the date of the rules of this court. If the right to admission exists at all, it is by virtue of the proviso,
his appointment as provincial fiscal, and it further affirmatively appears that he was deficient which, it is claimed, confers substantial rights and privileges upon the persons named
in the required qualifications at the time when he last applied for admission to the bar. therein, and establishes rules of legislative creation for their admission to the bar. (p. 647.)

In the light of this affirmative proof of his defieciency on that occasion, we do not think that Considering the proviso, however, as an enactment, it is clearly a special legislation,
his appointment to the office of provincial fiscal is in itself satisfactory proof if his possession prohibited by the constitution, and invalid as such. If the legislature had any right to admit
of the necessary qualifications of learning and ability. We conclude therefore that this attorneys to practice in the courts and take part in the administration of justice, and could
application for license to practice in the courts of the Philippines, should be denied. prescribe the character of evidence which should be received by the court as conclusive of
the requisite learning and ability of persons to practice law, it could only be done by a
general law, persons or classes of persons. Const. art 4, section 2. The right to practice law
In view, however, of the fact that when he took the examination he fell only four points short is a privilege, and a license for that purpose makes the holder an officer of the court, and
of the necessary grade to entitle him to a license to practice; and in view also of the fact that confers upon him the right to appear for litigants, to argue causes, and to collect fees
since that time he has held the responsible office of the governor of the Province of therefor, and creates certain exemptions, such as from jury services and arrest on civil
Sorsogon and presumably gave evidence of such marked ability in the performance of the process while attending court. The law conferring such privileges must be general in its
duties of that office that the Chief Executive, with the consent and approval of the Philippine operation. No doubt the legislature, in framing an enactment for that purpose, may classify
Commission, sought to retain him in the Government service by appointing him to the office persons so long as the law establishing classes in general, and has some reasonable
of provincial fiscal, we think we would be justified under the above-cited provisions of Act relation to the end sought. There must be some difference which furnishes a reasonable
No. 1597 in waiving in his case the ordinary examination prescribed by general rule, basis for different one, having no just relation to the subject of the legislation. Braceville
provided he offers satisfactory evidence of his proficiency in a special examination which will Coal Co. vs. People, 147 Ill. 66, 35 N.E. 62; Ritchie vs. People, 155 Ill. 98, 40 N.E.
be given him by a committee of the court upon his application therefor, without prejudice to 454; Railroad Co. vs. Ellis, 165 U.S. 150, 17 Sup. Ct. 255.
his right, if he desires so to do, to present himself at any of the ordinary examinations
prescribed by general rule. — (In re Guariña, pp. 48-49.)
The length of time a physician has practiced, and the skill acquired by experience, may
furnish a basis for classification (Williams vs. People 121 Ill. 48, II N.E. 881); but the place
It is obvious, therefore, that the ultimate power to grant license for the practice of law belongs where such physician has resided and practiced his profession cannot furnish such basis,
exclusively to this Court, and the law passed by Congress on the matter is of permissive character, or and is an arbitrary discrimination, making an enactment based upon it void (State vs.
as other authorities say, merely to fix the minimum conditions for the license. Pennyeor, 65 N.E. 113, 18 Atl. 878). Here the legislature undertakes to say what shall serve
as a test of fitness for the profession of the law, and plainly, any classification must have in no matter affect the power of the Legislature to select from the great body of the public an
some reference to learning, character, or ability to engage in such practice. The proviso is individual upon whom it would confer its favors.
limited, first, to a class of persons who began the study of law prior to November 4, 1897.
This class is subdivided into two classes — First, those presenting diplomas issued by any
law school of this state before December 31, 1899; and, second, those who studied law for A statute of the state of Minnesota (Laws 1929, c. 424) commanded the Supreme Court to
the period of two years in a law office, or part of the time in a law school and part in a law admit to the practice of law without examination, all who had served in the military or naval
office, who are to be admitted upon examination in the subjects specified in the present forces of the United States during the World War and received a honorable discharge
rules of this court, and as to this latter subdivision there seems to be no limit of time for therefrom and who (were disabled therein or thereby within the purview of the Act of
making application for admission. As to both classes, the conditions of the rules are Congress approved June 7th, 1924, known as "World War Veteran's Act, 1924 and whose
dispensed with, and as between the two different conditions and limits of time are fixed. No disability is rated at least ten per cent thereunder at the time of the passage of this Act."
course of study is prescribed for the law school, but a diploma granted upon the completion This Act was held |unconstitutional on the ground that it clearly violated the quality clauses
of any sort of course its managers may prescribe is made all-sufficient. Can there be of the constitution of that state. In re Application of George W. Humphrey, 178 Minn. 331,
anything with relation to the qualifications or fitness of persons to practice law resting upon 227 N.W. 179.
the mere date of November 4, 1897, which will furnish a basis of classification. Plainly not.
Those who began the study of law November 4th could qualify themselves to practice in two A good summary of a classification constitutionally acceptable is explained in 12 Am. Jur. 151-153 as
years as well as those who began on the 3rd. The classes named in the proviso need spend follows:
only two years in study, while those who commenced the next day must spend three years,
although they would complete two years before the time limit. The one who commenced on
the 3rd. If possessed of a diploma, is to be admitted without examination before December The general rule is well settled by unanimity of the authorities that a classification to be valid
31, 1899, and without any prescribed course of study, while as to the other the prescribed must rest upon material differences between the person included in it and those excluded
course must be pursued, and the diploma is utterly useless. Such classification cannot rest and, furthermore, must be based upon substantial distinctions. As the rule has sometimes
upon any natural reason, or bear any just relation to the subject sought, and none is avoided the constitutional prohibition, must be founded upon pertinent and real differences,
suggested. The proviso is for the sole purpose of bestowing privileges upon certain defined as distinguished from irrelevant and artificial ones. Therefore, any law that is made
persons. (pp. 647-648.) applicable to one class of citizens only must be based on some substantial difference
between the situation of that class and other individuals to which it does not apply and must
rest on some reason on which it can be defended. In other words, there must be such a
In the case of Cannon above cited, State vs. Cannon, 240 N.W. 441, where the legislature attempted difference between the situation and circumstances of all the members of the class and the
by law to reinstate Cannon to the practice of law, the court also held with regards to its aspect of being situation and circumstances of all other members of the state in relation to the subjects of
a class legislation: the discriminatory legislation as presents a just and natural cause for the difference made in
their liabilities and burdens and in their rights and privileges. A law is not general because it
But the statute is invalid for another reason. If it be granted that the legislature has power to operates on all within a clause unless there is a substantial reason why it is made to operate
prescribe ultimately and definitely the qualifications upon which courts must admit and on that class only, and not generally on all. (12 Am. Jur. pp. 151-153.)
license those applying as attorneys at law, that power can not be exercised in the manner
here attempted. That power must be exercised through general laws which will apply to all Pursuant to the law in question, those who, without a grade below 50 per cent in any subject, have
alike and accord equal opportunity to all. Speaking of the right of the Legislature to exact obtained a general average of 69.5 per cent in the bar examinations in 1946 to 1951, 70.5 per cent in
qualifications of those desiring to pursue chosen callings, Mr. Justice Field in the case 1952, 71.5 per cent in 1953, and those will obtain 72.5 per cent in 1954, and 73.5 per cent in 1955, will
of Dent. vs. West Virginia, 129 U.S. 114, 121, 9 S. Ct. 232, 233, 32 L. Ed. 626, said: "It is be permitted to take and subscribe the corresponding oath of office as members of the Bar,
undoubtedly the right of every citizen of the United States to follow any lawful calling, notwithstanding that the rules require a minimum general average of 75 per cent, which has been
business or profession he may choose, subject only to such restrictions as are imposed invariably followed since 1950. Is there any motive of the nature indicated by the abovementioned
upon all persons of like age, sex, and condition." This right may in many respects be authorities, for this classification ? If there is none, and none has been given, then the classification is
considered as a distinguishing feature of our republican institutions. Here all vocations are fatally defective.
all open to every one on like conditions. All may be pursued as sources of livelihood, some
requiring years of study and great learning for their successful prosecution. The interest, or,
as it is sometimes termed, the "estate" acquired in them — that is, the right to continue their It was indicated that those who failed in 1944, 1941 or the years before, with the general average
prosecution — is often of great value to the possessors and cannot be arbitrarily taken from indicated, were not included because the Tribunal has no record of the unsuccessful candidates of
them, any more than their real or personal property can be thus taken. It is fundamental those years. This fact does not justify the unexplained classification of unsuccessful candidates by
under our system of government that all similarly situated and possessing equal years, from 1946-1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1955. Neither is the exclusion of those who failed before
qualifications shall enjoy equal opportunities. Even statutes regulating the practice of said years under the same conditions justified. The fact that this Court has no record of examinations
medicine, requiring medications to establish the possession on the part of the application of prior to 1946 does not signify that no one concerned may prove by some other means his right to an
his proper qualifications before he may be licensed to practice, have been challenged, and equal consideration.
courts have seriously considered whether the exemption from such examinations of those
practicing in the state at the time of the enactment of the law rendered such law
To defend the disputed law from being declared unconstitutional on account of its retroactivity, it is
unconstitutional because of infringement upon this general principle. State vs. Thomas Call,
argued that it is curative, and that in such form it is constitutional. What does Rep. Act 972 intend to
121 N.C. 643, 28 S.E. 517; see, also, The State ex rel. Winkler vs. Rosenberg, 101 Wis.
cure ? Only from 1946 to 1949 were there cases in which the Tribunal permitted admission to the bar
172, 76 N.W. 345; State vs. Whitcom, 122 Wis. 110, 99 N.W. 468.
of candidates who did not obtain the general average of 75 per cent: in 1946 those who obtained only
72 per cent; in the 1947 and those who had 69 per cent or more; in 1948, 70 per cent and in 1949, 74
This law singles out Mr. Cannon and assumes to confer upon him the right to practice law per cent; and in 1950 to 1953, those who obtained 74 per cent, which was considered by the Court as
and to constitute him an officer of this Court as a mere matter of legislative grace or favor. It equivalent to 75 per cent as prescribed by the Rules, by reason of circumstances deemed to be
is not material that he had once established his right to practice law and that one time he sufficiently justifiable. These changes in the passing averages during those years were all that could be
possessed the requisite learning and other qualifications to entitle him to that right. That fact objected to or criticized. Now, it is desired to undo what had been done — cancel the license that was
issued to those who did not obtain the prescribed 75 per cent ? Certainly not. The disputed law clearly
does not propose to do so. Concededly, it approves what has been done by this Tribunal. What 4. The reason advanced for the pretended classification of candidates, which the law makes, is
Congress lamented is that the Court did not consider 69.5 per cent obtained by those candidates who contrary to facts which are of general knowledge and does not justify the admission to the Bar of law
failed in 1946 to 1952 as sufficient to qualify them to practice law. Hence, it is the lack of will or defect students inadequately prepared. The pretended classification is arbitrary. It is undoubtedly a class
of judgment of the Court that is being cured, and to complete the cure of this infirmity, the effectivity of legislation.
the disputed law is being extended up to the years 1953, 1954 and 1955, increasing each year the
general average by one per cent, with the order that said candidates be admitted to the Bar. This
purpose, manifest in the said law, is the best proof that what the law attempts to amend and correct are 5. Article 2 of Republic Act No. 972 is not embraced in the title of the law, contrary to what the
not the rules promulgated, but the will or judgment of the Court, by means of simply taking its place. Constitution enjoins, and being inseparable from the provisions of article 1, the entire law is void.
This is doing directly what the Tribunal should have done during those years according to the judgment
of Congress. In other words, the power exercised was not to repeal, alter or supplement the rules, 6. Lacking in eight votes to declare the nullity of that part of article 1 referring to the examinations of
which continue in force. What was done was to stop or suspend them. And this power is not included in 1953 to 1955, said part of article 1, insofar as it concerns the examinations in those years, shall
what the Constitution has granted to Congress, because it falls within the power to apply the rules. This continue in force.
power corresponds to the judiciary, to which such duty been confided.

Article 2 of the law in question permits partial passing of examinations, at indefinite intervals. The grave
defect of this system is that it does not take into account that the laws and jurisprudence are not
stationary, and when a candidate finally receives his certificate, it may happen that the existing laws
and jurisprudence are already different, seriously affecting in this manner his usefulness. The system
RESOLUTION
that the said law prescribes was used in the first bar examinations of this country, but was abandoned
for this and other disadvantages. In this case, however, the fatal defect is that the article is not
expressed in the title will have temporary effect only from 1946 to 1955, the text of article 2 establishes Upon mature deliberation by this Court, after hearing and availing of the magnificent and impassioned
a permanent system for an indefinite time. This is contrary to Section 21 (1), article VI of the discussion of the contested law by our Chief Justice at the opening and close of the debate among the
Constitution, which vitiates and annuls article 2 completely; and because it is inseparable from article members of the Court, and after hearing the judicious observations of two of our beloved colleagues
1, it is obvious that its nullity affect the entire law. who since the beginning have announced their decision not to take part in voting, we, the eight
members of the Court who subscribed to this decision have voted and resolved, and have decided for
the Court, and under the authority of the same:
Laws are unconstitutional on the following grounds: first, because they are not within the legislative
powers of Congress to enact, or Congress has exceeded its powers; second, because they create or
establish arbitrary methods or forms that infringe constitutional principles; and third, because their 1. That (a) the portion of article 1 of Republic Act No. 972 referring to the examinations of 1946 to
purposes or effects violate the Constitution or its basic principles. As has already been seen, the 1952, and (b) all of article 2 of said law are unconstitutional and, therefore, void and without force and
contested law suffers from these fatal defects. effect.

Summarizing, we are of the opinion and hereby declare that Republic Act No. 972 is unconstitutional 2. That, for lack of unanimity in the eight Justices, that part of article 1 which refers to the examinations
and therefore, void, and without any force nor effect for the following reasons, to wit: subsequent to the approval of the law, that is from 1953 to 1955 inclusive, is valid and shall continue to
be in force, in conformity with section 10, article VII of the Constitution.
1. Because its declared purpose is to admit 810 candidates who failed in the bar examinations of 1946-
1952, and who, it admits, are certainly inadequately prepared to practice law, as was exactly found by Consequently, (1) all the above-mentioned petitions of the candidates who failed in the examinations of
this Court in the aforesaid years. It decrees the admission to the Bar of these candidates, depriving this 1946 to 1952 inclusive are denied, and (2) all candidates who in the examinations of 1953 obtained a
Tribunal of the opportunity to determine if they are at present already prepared to become members of general average of 71.5 per cent or more, without having a grade below 50 per cent in any subject, are
the Bar. It obliges the Tribunal to perform something contrary to reason and in an arbitrary manner. considered as having passed, whether they have filed petitions for admission or not. After this decision
This is a manifest encroachment on the constitutional responsibility of the Supreme Court. has become final, they shall be permitted to take and subscribe the corresponding oath of office as
members of the Bar on the date or dates that the chief Justice may set. So ordered.
2. Because it is, in effect, a judgment revoking the resolution of this Court on the petitions of these 810
candidates, without having examined their respective examination papers, and although it is admitted Bengzon, Montemayor, Jugo, Labrador, Pablo, Padilla, and Reyes, JJ., concur.
that this Tribunal may reconsider said resolution at any time for justifiable reasons, only this Court and
no other may revise and alter them. In attempting to do it directly Republic Act No. 972 violated the
Constitution.

3. By the disputed law, Congress has exceeded its legislative power to repeal, alter and supplement ANNEX I
the rules on admission to the Bar. Such additional or amendatory rules are, as they ought to be,
intended to regulate acts subsequent to its promulgation and should tend to improve and elevate the PETITIONERS UNDER REPUBLIC ACT NO. 972
practice of law, and this Tribunal shall consider these rules as minimum norms towards that end in the
admission, suspension, disbarment and reinstatement of lawyers to the Bar, inasmuch as a good bar
assists immensely in the daily performance of judicial functions and is essential to a worthy A resume‚ of pertinent facts concerning the bar examinations of 1946 to 1953 inclusive follows:
administration of justice. It is therefore the primary and inherent prerogative of the Supreme Court to
render the ultimate decision on who may be admitted and may continue in the practice of law
according to existing rules. August, 19461
Board of Examiners: Hon. Pedro Tuason, Chairman, Prof. Gerardo Florendo, Atty. Bernardino
Guerrero, Atty. Joaquin Ramirez, Atty. Crispin Oben, Hon. Jose Teodoro, Atty. Federico Agrava, Atty.
Jose Perez Cardenas, and Hon. Bienvenido A. Tan, members. the Court found out that they were not benefited at all by the bonus of 12 points given by the
Examiner in Civil Law.
Number of candidates 206
August, 1948
Number of candidates whose grades were raised 12
Board of Examiners: Hon. Marceliano R. Montemayor, Chairman Hon. Luis P. Torres, Hon. Felipe
73'S 6
Natividad, Hon. Jose Teodoro, Sr., Atty. Federico Agrava, Atty. Macario Peralta, Sr., Hon. Jesus G.
72'S 6 Barrera, Hon. Rafael Amparo, Atty. Alfonso Ponce Enrile, Members.
Number of candidates who passed 85 Number of candidates 899
Number of candidates who failed 121 Number of candidates whose grades were raised 64
Number of those affected by Republic Act No. 972 18 71's 29
Percentage of success (per cent) 41.62 70's 35
Percentage of failure (per cent) 58.74 Number of candidates who passed 490
Passing grade (per cent) 72 Number of candidates who failed 409
November, 1946 Number of those affected by Republic Act No. 972 11
Board of Examiners: The same as that of August, 1946, except Hon. Jose Teodoro who was Percentage of success (per cent) 62.40
substituted by Atty. Honesto K. Bausan.
Percentage of failure (per cent) 37.60
Number of candidates 481
Passing grade (per cent) 70
Number of candidates whose grades were raised 19
(by resolution of the Court).
(72 per cent and above 73 per cent ---
August, 1949
Minutes of March 31, 1947)
Board of Examiners: Hon. Sabino Padilla, Chairman, Hon. Fernando Jugo, Hon. Enrique Filamor, Atty.
Number of candidates who passed 249
Salvador Araneta, Hon. Pastor M. Endencia, Atty. Federico Agrava, Hon. Mariano H. de Joya, Hon.
Number of candidates who failed 228 Felipe Natividad, Atty. Emeterio Barcelon, Members.
Number of those affected by Republic Act No. 972 43 Number of candidates 1,218
Percentage of success (per cent) 52.20 Number of candidates whose grades were raised (74's) 55
Percentage of failure (per cent) 47.80 Number of candidates who passed 686
Passing grade (per cent) 72 Number of candidates who failed 532
(By resolution of the Court).
Number of those affected by Republic Act No. 972 164
October, 1947
Percentage of success (per cent) 56.28
Board of Examiners: Hon. Cesar Bengzon, Chairman, Hon. Guillermo B. Guevara, Atty. Antonio
Percentage of failure (per cent) 43.72
Araneta, Atty. Simon Cruz, Hon. Sixto de la Costa, Atty. Celso B. Jamora, Hon. Emilio Peña, Atty.
Federico Agrava, Atty. Carlos B. Hilado, Members. Passing grade (per cent) 74
Number of candidates 749 (by resolution of the Court).
Number of candidates whose grades were raised 43 August, 1950
70.55 per cent with 2 subject below 50 per cent 1 Board of Examiners: Hon. Fernando Jugo,2 Chairman, Hon. Guillermo B. Guevara, Atty. Enrique
Altavas, Atty. Marcial P. Lichauco, Atty. Carlos B. Hilado, Atty. J. Antonio Araneta, Hon. Enrique V.
69 per cent 40
Filamor, Hon. Francisco A. Delgado, Hon. Antonio Horrilleno, Members.
68 per cent 2
Number of candidates 1,316
Number of candidates who passed 409
Number of candidates whose grades were raised 38
Number of candidates who failed 340
(The grade of 74 was raised to 75 per cent by recommendation and authority
Number of those affected by Republic Act No. 972 972 of the examiner in Remedial Law, Atty. Francisco Delgado).
Percentage of success (per cent) 54.59 Number of candidates who passed 432
Percentage of failure (per cent) 45.41 Number of candidates who failed 894
Passing grade (per cent) 69 Number of those affected by Republic Act No. 972 26
(by resolution of the Court). Percentage of success (per cent) 32.14
Percentage of failure (per cent) 67.86
Note.--In passing the 2 whose grades were 68.95 per cent and 68.1 per cent respectively,
Passing grade (per cent) 75 PETITIONER UNDER THE BAR FLUNKERS' LAW
August, 1951 Civ. Land Merc. Int. Pol. Crim. Rem. Leg. Gen.
Av.
Board of Examiners: Hon. Guillermo F. Pablo, Chairman, Hon. Pastor M. Endencia, Atty. Enrique
Altavas, Hon. Manuel Lim, Hon. Felipe Natividad, Hon. Vicente Albert, Atty. Arturo Alafriz, Hon. MRD- 1. Agunod, Filemon L. 66 71 61 76 80 83 73 75 71.4
Enrique V. Filamor, Hon. Alfonso Felix, Members.
MRD- 2. Cunanan, Albino 76 72 74 75 70 70 65 72 71.45
Number of candidates 2,068
MRD- 3. Mejia, Flaviano V. 64 64 65 68 83 74 68 80 69.85
Number of candidates whose grades were raised (74's) 112
1948
Number of candidates who passed 1,189
MRD- 4. Orlina, Soledad R. 71 68 66 75 63 75 70 88 69.9
Number of candidates who failed 879
MRD- 5. Vivero, Antonio Lu. 75 73 73 65 63 66 65 80 69.95
Number of those affected by Republic Act No. 972 196
MRD- 6. Gatchalian, Salud 72 66 71 75 78 68 65 50 69.65
Percentage of success (per cent) 57.49
1949
Percentage of failure (per cent) 42.51
7. Abaya, Jesus A. 69 79 75 75 71 89 55 75 70.8
Passing grade (per cent) 75
MRD- 8. Advincula, David D. 76 80 62 86 81 72 60 65 70.5
August, 1952
9. Agraviador, Alfredo L. 63 85 70 77 80 81 65 80 71.8
Board of Examiners: Hon. Sabino Padilla, Chairman, Hon. Pastor M. Endencia, Hon. Enrique V.
10. Alacar, Pascual C. 61 63 83 79 71 85 65 80 72.05
Filamor, Atty. Francisco Ortigas, Hon. Emilio Peña, Atty. Emilio P. Virata, Hon. Alfonso Felix, Hon.
Felipe Natividad, Atty. Macario Peralta, Sr., Members. 11. Amog, Pedro M. 75 66 76 78 81 74 55 85 72.2
Number of candidates 2,738 12. Apolinario, Miguel S. 75 84 78 78 70 70 60 75 71.95
Number of candidates whose grades were raised (74's) 163 13. Aquino, Maximo G. 82 77 71 77 76 77 60 75 73.15
Number of candidates who passed 1,705 14. Asinas, Candido D. 75 83 69 80 81 83 55 85 72.65
Number of candidates who failed 1,033 15. Baldivino, Jose B. 75 65 72 82 82 69 60 80 71.95
Number of those affected by Republic Act No. 972 426 16. Balintona, Bernardo 75 80 64 78 74 67 65 70 70
Percentage of success (per cent) 62.27 17. Banawa, Angel L. 78 70 70 75 81 83 60 60 72.3
Percentage of failure (per cent) 37.73 18. Bandala, Anacleto A. 66 80 66 71 93 72 55 70 69.6
Passing grade (per cent) 75 19. Bandon, Alawadin L. 74 79 69 77 91 73 60 80 73.35
August, 1953 20. Baquero, Benjamin 76 79 64 77 85 72 65 75 72.5
Board of Examiners: Hon. Fernando Jugo, Chairman, Hon. Pastor M. Endencia, Atty. Enrique Altavas, 21. Blanco, Jose 75 75 70 75 77 76 60 90 72.5
Atty. Francisco Ortigas, Jr., Hon. Emilio Peña, Atty. Jose S. de la Cruz, Hon. Alfonso Felix, Hon. Felipe
Natividad, Hon. Mariano L. de la Rosa, Members. 22. Buenaluz, Victoriano T. 75 71 72 78 67 82 60 75 70.85

Number of candidates 2,555 23. Canda, Benjamin S. 75 72 75 82 76 77 65 75 73.55

Number of candidates whose grades were raised (74's) 100 24. Canon, Guillermo 77 86 67 88 75 69 70 85 73.9

Number of candidates who passed 1,570 25. Carlos, Estela S. 75 81 81 79 72 73 65 70 73.8


26. Cerezo, Gregorio O. 69 76 76 79 71 80 55 80 70.4
Number of candidates who failed 986
Number of those affected by Republic Act No. 972 284 27. Clarin, Manuel L. 75 82 76 81 73 69 70 75 73.95

Percentage of success (per cent) 61.04 28. Claudo, Conrado O. 76 62 78 77 73 72 60 70 71.4


29. Condevillamar, Antonio 68 65 74 80 85 75 60 75 71.65
Percentage of failure (per cent) 38.96
V.
Passing grade (per cent) 75
MRD- Cornejo, Crisanto R. 72 75 69 82 83 79 65 80 73.4
30.
A list of petitioners for admission to the Bar under Republic Act No. 972, grouped by the years in which 31. Corona, Olvido D. 68 76 73 81 81 72 60 75 71.15
they took the bar examinations, with annotations as to who had presented motions for reconsideration
which were denied (MRD), and who filed mere motions for reconsideration without invoking said law, 32. Dizon, Marcial C. 76 86 69 83 75 74 65 80 73.1
which are still pending, follows: 33. Enriquez, Agustin P. 75 77 70 81 81 77 65 80 73.75
34. Espiritu, Irineo E. 80 88 69 75 76 77 65 75 73.8
35. Fernandez, Macario J. 63 82 76 75 81 84 65 75 72.95
36. Gallardo, Amando C. 78 79 67 77 76 75 60 65 70.95 76. Plantilla, Rodrigo C. 72 78 68 89 79 81 65 85 73.55
37. Garcia, Freidrich M. 76 80 66 75 72 70 60 75 69.7 77. Regalario, Benito B. 72 80 64 80 75 81 55 80 69.55
38. Garcia, Julian L. 64 77 68 82 89 77 65 75 72.15 78. Robis, Casto P. 62 77 74 73 68 80 70 80 70.9
39. Garcia, Leon Mo. 77 86 71 80 60 82 65 75 71.85 79. Rodil, Francisco C. 68 69 70 81 76 75 65 75 70.75
40. Garcia, Pedro V. 76 82 73 81 74 83 60 85 73.6 80. Rodriguez, Mariano I. 80 75 69 80 72 80 65 80 73.35
41. Garcia, Santiago C. 62 91 79 75 72 75 65 80 71.8 81. Romero, Crispulo P. 78 75 66 77 76 83 65 75 72.85
42. Genoves, Pedro 75 83 70 78 87 76 55 80 72.7 82. Saez, Porfirio D. 75 75 72 81 69 77 60 75 71
43. Gonzales, Amado P. 75 71 71 75 86 75 60 75 72.65 83. Saliguma, Crisogono D. 79 79 74 78 69 65 65 70 71.8
44. Guia, Odon R. de 77 76 66 81 74 76 60 75 70.9 84. Samano, Fortunato A. 75 84 72 77 70 82 60 75 71.9
45. Fernandez, Simeon 62 68 71 80 74 90 65 75 70.85 85. Santos, Faustina C. 71 68 68 76 75 85 55 75 69.5
46. Jakosalem, Filoteo 82 83 73 82 61 87 65 70 73.6 86. Santos, Josefina R. 68 69 76 71 77 82 65 75 72.3
47. Jesus, Felipe D. de 75 83 67 79 78 85 60 75 72.45 87. Seludo, Ananias G. 75 80 69 79 77 82 65 75 73.25
48. Jocom, Jacobo M. 77 77 74 77 74 64 55 85 70.65 88. Semilia, Rafael I. 68 85 55 83 89 79 65 80 71.25
49. Juares, Nicolas 77 84 56 76 73 82 60 85 70 89. Telan, Gaudencio 77 79 70 75 70 75 60 75 70.85
50. Kalalang, Remigio 65 75 74 80 70 70 65 85 70.3 90. Tesorero, Leocadio T. 75 71 63 75 82 62 65 63 69.65
51. Layumas, Vicente L. 67 84 65 75 89 66 60 80 70.3 91. Torre, Valentin S. de la 85 81 71 76 69 65 55 70 70.4
52. Leyson, Amancio F. 69 83 75 76 81 75 65 75 73.15 92. Torres, Ariston L. 78 71 72 81 61 84 55 85 70.4
53. Libanan, Marcelino 71 83 61 77 80 81 65 85 71.75 93. Veyra, Zosimo C. de 70 75 71 79 65 80 65 80 70.65
54. Lim, Jose E. 77 77 72 76 72 64 65 70 71.15 94. Viado, Jose 67 70 74 75 75 90 55 80 70.7
55. Lim, Jose F. 70 75 62 83 80 71 65 80 70.4 95. Villacarlos, Delfin A. 73 87 71 82 69 70 75 85 73.85
56. Linao, Mariano M. 66 84 76 78 80 75 60 75 71.75 96. Villamil, Leonor S. 73 81 76 86 86 73 55 85 73.6
57. Lopez, Angelo P. 67 81 75 72 79 81 55 80 71 97. Zabala, Amando A. 76 70 67 75 76 76 60 75 70.6
58. Lopez, Eliezar M. 77 75 60 75 77 85 60 75 70.7 1950
59. Lopez, Nicanor S. 72 71 70 78 77 84 60 75 71.55 MRD-98. Cruz, Filomeno de la 70 71 78 81 76 72 64 96 73.4
60. Manoleto, Proceso D. 72 70 65 78 81 90 60 80 71.95 99. Española, Pablo S. 71 78 55 76 85 69 65 93 70.2
61. Mancao, Alfredo P. 67 64 71 83 76 76 65 80 70.95 100. Foronda, Clarencio J. 60 78 68 79 84 88 62 93 71.9
62. Manera, Mariano A. 75 78 75 75 68 79 60 65 71 101. Hechanova, Vicente 59 76 75 75 69 68 75 96 71.3
63. Mercado, Arsenio N. 67 64 71 83 76 76 65 80 70.95 MRD- Peñalosa, Osias R. 80 78 61 76 61 77 66 85 70.2
102.
64. Miranda, Benjamin G. 76 81 67 82 74 77 65 80 72.55
103. Sarmiento, Floro A. 65 86 63 82 89 72 60 72 70.15
65. Manad, Andres B. 77 75 68 82 69 72 65 75 71.15
MRD- Torre, Catalino P. 75 85 68 78 69 67 65 69 70.25
1948
104.
66. Orosco, Casimiro P. 72 84 69 81 70 82 65 75 71.9
105. Ungson, Fernando S. 61 87 75 70 57 85 83 82 72.8
67. Padua, Manuel C. 76 76 68 80 79 79 50 75 70.1
1951
68. Palang, Basilio S. 71 75 82 71 55 87 55 75 69.6
106. Abasolo, Romulo 77 70 64 65 76 70 76 64 71.7
69. Palma, Cuadrato 62 75 69 93 80 79 55 80 69.5
107. Adeva, Daniel G. 75 59 74 65 69 51 78 67 70.4
70. Pañganiban, Jose V. 67 83 61 81 91 74 60 75 70.6
108. Aguilar, Vicente Z. 73 63 68 75 70 69 75 75 71.25
71. Pareja, Felipe 66 71 75 81 67 74 60 70 68.75
109. Amodia, Juan T. 75 76 66 75 76 60 77 76 72.35
72. Patalinjug, Eriberto 73 77 78 73 78 71 55 75 71.25
MRD- Añosa, Pablo S. 76 78 63 75 74 61 75 79 71.6
73. Paulin, Jose C. 66 69 71 77 83 82 65 75 72.1 110.
74. Pido, Serafin C. 72 78 63 80 71 85 70 80 72.05 111. Antiola, Anastacio R. 68 76 75 70 71 70 81 66 73.05
75. Pimentel, Luis P. 77 75 76 81 76 68 55 80 71.6 112. Aquino, S. Rey A. 70 71 71 60 74 62 76 77 71.1
113. Atienza, Manuel G. 71 78 68 80 86 51 82 75 73.85 147. Guina, Graciano P. 66 69 67 60 78 52 83 61 69.6
114. Avanceña, Alfonso 71 71 65 75 70 72 78 80 71.8 MRD- Homeres, Praxedes P. 74 74 75 75 71 69 75 71 73.35
148.
MRD- Balacuit, Camilo N. 75 73 75 70 72 65 75 76 73.25
115. 149. Ibarra, Venancio M. 60 75 74 70 74 70 80 75 71.9
116. Barinaga, Jeremias L. 68 69 73 70 74 50 80 79 71.2 150. Imperial, Monico L. 72 78 75 75 72 56 82 77 73.7
MRD- Barrientos, Ambrosio D. 76 60 67 55 74 63 77 62 70.25 MRD- Ibasco, Jr., Emiliano M. 71 70 63 85 71 60 85 53 70.85
117. 151.
MRD- Benitez, Tomas P. 67 75 75 60 73 72 75 78 72.2 152. Inandan, Fortunato C. 77 77 67 53 73 75 79 57 72.5
118.
153. Jimenez, Florencio C. 75 70 70 75 72 61 75 78 72.05
119. Biason, Sixto F. 73 82 67 65 66 72 77 68 71.25
154. Kintanar, Woodrow M. 70 83 72 65 76 73 75 69 72.95
MRD- Briñas, Isagani A. 71 69 74 70 76 52 79 72 71.95
155. Languido, Cesar V. 63 71 63 85 70 61 85 79 70.55
120.
156. Lavilles, Cesar L. 61 89 75 55 73 63 75 78 70.55
121. Buela, Arcadio P. 72 77 61 70 71 58 79 71 69.75
157. Llenos, Francisco U. 64 70 65 60 72 65 92 75 71.75
122. Cabilao, Leonardo S. 73 50 75 75 75 60 71 79 71.25
158. Leon, Marcelo D. de 63 73 60 85 75 75 90 70 72.75
123. Cabrera, Ireneo M. 75 66 70 65 72 81 70 79 72.4
159. Llanto, Priscilla 72 68 60 65 76 67 84 68 71.35
124. Cacacho, Emilio V.
160. Machachor, Oscar 68 59 78 70 67 57 75 75 70.15
125. Calilung, Soledad C. 64 73 73 80 73 57 75 59 69.65
MRD- Magsino, Encarnacion 77 66 70 70 76 71 75 61 72.75
MRD- Calimlim, Jose B. 64 73 73 80 73 57 75 59 69.65
161.
126.
MRD- Maligaya, Demetrio M. 70 61 75 65 75 50 91 51 72.3
127. Calimlim, Pedro B. 66 82 69 60 69 52 83 75 70
162.
128. Camello, Sotero H. 70 77 63 65 75 66 84 64 71.55
163. Manio, Gregorio 67 67 69 80 71 67 75 75 70.65
129. Campos, Juan A. 71 88 70 75 64 69 71 62 70.15
164. Puzon, Eduardo S. 72 82 60 60 69 70 68 72 62.05
130. Castillo, Antonio del 78 78 70 60 79 67 69 76 72.65
MRD- Marcial, Meynardo R. 66 75 74 70 75 67 81 75 73.15
MRD- Castillo, Dominador Ad. 75 61 72 75 74 71 67 66 71.1 165.
131.
166. Martin, Benjamin S. 68 72 63 75 69 63 84 62 70.1
MRD- Castro, Jesus B. 72 86 72 75 65 75 76 71 72.85
MRD- Monterroyo, Catalina S. 70 80 75 80 76 66 82 51 73.95
132.
167.
133. Casuga, Bienvenido B. 75 72 72 70 69 61 75 60 70.95
MRD- Montero, Leodegario C. 73 67 66 80 81 65 81 75 73.75
134. Cabangbang, Santiago 77 67 61 80 73 59 83 76 72.2 168.
B.
169. Monzon, Candido T. 70 72 74 75 67 70 77 69 72.05
135. Cruz, Federico S. 69 74 75 75 68 65 76 70 71.65
170. Natividad, Alberto M. 73 79 68 65 73 69 75 79 72.2
136. Dacanay, Eufemio P. 70 73 62 75 72 69 85 71 72.05
MRD- Navallo, Capistrano C. 70 72 68 85 81 66 71 74 72.1
137. Deysolong, Felisberto 66 62 72 75 70 62 83 62 70.85 171.
MRD- Dimaano, Jr., Jose N. 78 79 63 75 73 75 81 59 73.5 172. Nisce, Camilo Z. 66 66 75 65 79 68 85 62 73.5
138.
MRD- Ocampo, Antonio F. de 75 81 76 65 74 67 75 69 73.75
139. Espinosa, Domingo L. 78 63 58 70 70 67 87 63 71.6 173.
MRD- Farol, Evencia C. 80 78 66 75 81 72 62 73 72.25 174. Olaviar, Jose O. 72 70 69 55 66 70 77 75 70.5
140.
MRD- Perez, Cesario Z. 75 76 66 80 72 63 82 69 72.95
141. Felix, Conrado S. 71 71 75 65 70 58 75 69 70.75 175.
142. Fernan, Pablo L. 67 88 66 85 73 68 78 75 72.35 176. Pogado, Causin O. 70 66 65 70 75 64 75 70 69.95
143. Gandioco, Salvador G. 64 58 66 65 76 70 89 75 72.1 177. Ramos-Balmori, 75 73 62 65 78 59 75 66 70.2
Manuela
144. Gastardo, Crispin B. 70 69 68 75 78 66 86 72 73.9
178. Recinto, Ireneo I. 73 76 68 75 74 68 80 53 72.3
145. Genson, Angelo B. 75 57 73 65 67 54 78 56 69.55
MRD- Redor, Francisco K. 62 77 73 75 69 64 76 69 70
146. Guiani, Guinald M. 68 60 75 65 74 67 75 77 71.5
179.
MRD- Regis, Deogracias A. 76 74 68 65 65 65 88 75 73.35 214. Adove, Nehemias C. 76 86 78 77 66 78 69 62 73.55
180.
215. Adrias, Inocencio C. 75 83 61 88 76 67 79 75 73.4
181. Rigor, Estelita C. 67 78 61 80 71 77 79 65 70.9
216. Aglugub, Andres R. 75 83 73 88 72 62 72 62 72.65
MRD- Rimorin-Gordo, Estela 70 72 62 60 88 66 67 79 70.15
217. Andrada, Mariano L. 76 85 66 87 63 77 75 77 73.
182.
MRP- Almeda, Serafin V. 72 72 75 81 61 67 73 65 70.75
183. Rosario, Prisco del 70 64 70 70 72 73 85 57 72.65
218.
184. Rosario, Vicente D. del 75 91 65 75 68 68 79 62 72.2
219. Almonte-Peralta, 73 71 72 91 75 67 65 53 70.7
185. Saavedra, Felipe 73 80 63 75 76 73 68 62 70.35 Felicidad
186. Salazar, Alfredo N. 66 72 73 75 67 68 77 69 70.85 MRP- Amodia, Juan T. 75 79 68 85 62 64 75 78 71.4
220.
187. Salem, Romulo R. 77 81 72 65 73 60 76 75 73
MRP- Antonio, Felino A. 71 76 81 83 79 52 72 70 73.3
188. Foz, Julita A. 75 72 75 75 65 70 76 64 72.5
221.
189. Santa Ana, Candido T. 77 69 65 75 81 75 70 75 73
MRP- Antonio, Jose S. 75 92 90 68 65 64 68 60 73.75
190. Santos, Aquilino 72 66 69 65 68 70 81 71 71.7 222.
191. Santos, Valeriano V. 76 72 75 75 68 62 76 79 73.1 223. Añonuevo, Ramos B. 71 87 78 81 64 63 74 76 72.7
192. Suico, Samuel 73 79 72 75 71 59 84 65 73.3 224. Aquino, S. Rey A. 67 77 57 78 69 70 69 80 67.7
193. Suson, Teodorico 74 68 66 80 66 59 79 67 70.35 225. Arteche, Filomeno D. 78 83 50 89 76 77 70 70 70.8
194. Tado, Florentino P. 64 76 67 65 76 72 76 53 69.7 MRP- Arribas, Isaac M. 75 78 70 81 73 70 67 78 72.2
226.
195. Tapayan, Domingo A. 69 72 69 70 76 73 82 79 73.75
MRP- Azucena, Ceferino D. 72 67 78 89 72 67 77 65 73.95
MRD- 67 60 71 75 79 67 84 60 72.7
Tiausas, Miguel V. 227.
196.
228. Atienza, Ricardo 72 87 70 79 66 55 75 75 70.85
197. Torres, Carlos P. 68 71 71 70 70 63 82 71 71.6
229. Balacuit, Camilo N. 75 78 89 75 70 54 66 75 73.3
198. Tria, Hipolito 69 72 75 60 69 54 78 66 70.05
MRP- Baclig, Cayetano S. 77 84 83 80 69 70 61 65 73
199. Velasco, Avelino A. 65 72 75 75 71 67 78 76 72.1
230.
200. Villa, Francisco C. 65 80 73 75 68 79 65 75 70.2 231. Balcita, Oscar C. 75 77 79 90 64 60 67 50 70.65
201. Villagonzalo, Job R. 78 67 74 65 72 51 69 71 70.25 232. Barilea, Dominador Z. 71 67 82 77 64 61 65 80 70.5
202. Villarama, Jr., Pedro 75 74 75 55 75 66 67 75 71.45
MRP- Banta, Jose Y. 75 80 77 81 75 63 71 75 73.95
1952 233.
203. Abacon, Pablo 75 72 78 81 78 72 64 55 72.7 MRP- Barrientos, Ambrosio D. 76 70 67 80 67 65 70 81 70.7
234.
MRP- Abad, Agapito 73 76 73 85 75 63 62 75 70.95
204. 235. Batucan, Jose M. 66 76 78 88 62 76 67 78 71.2
MRP- Abella, Ludovico B. 70 81 76 81 70 66 77 58 72.7 236. Bautista, Atilano C. 70 82 84 85 58 61 71 62 71.25
205. 237. Bautista, Celso J. 71 68 63 87 80 67 80 70 72.75
MRP- Abellera, Geronimo F. 75 79 79 87 76 51 63 70 71.7 238. Belderon, Jose 76 81 76 92 70 66 67 62 72.65
206.
MRP- Belo, Victor B. 76 77 64 73 75 71 76 76 72.85
MRP- Abenojar, Agapito N. 71 72 78 84 70 75 69 70 72.9
239.
207.
MRP- Bejec, Conceso D. 79 80 73 82 63 77 75 50 73.15
208. Alandy, Doroteo R. 64 83 93 91 68 59 60 60 71.2 240.
209. Alano, Fabian T. 70 83 61 83 72 87 72 70 71.9 MRP- Beltran, Gervasio M. 72 75 81 73 75 57 75 80 73.95
MRP- Alcantara, Pablo V. 71 79 80 81 73 70 72 62 73.65 241.
210. MRP- Benaojan, Robustiano 74 84 77 84 75 63 68 62 72.85
211. Arcangel, Agustin Ag. 75 85 71 73 76 65 68 65 71.85 242. O.
212. Acosta, Dionisio N. 75 81 78 87 56 65 77 70 72.8 MRP- Beriña, Roger C. 70 80 79 79 68 72 64 78 71.85
243.
MRP- Abinguna, Agapito C. 66 85 80 84 75 58 76 75 73.65
213. MRP- Bihis, Marcelo M. 75 86 65 92 64 64 84 75 73.45
244. 276. B.
MRP- Binaoro, Vicente M. 73 69 78 83 73 59 70 82 72.75 277. Cortez, Armando R. 78 60 88 86 60 66 69 64 73.1
245.
278. Crisostomo, Jesus L. 76 87 74 76 62 55 76 66 71.45
MRP- Bobila, Rosalio B. 76 86 76 83 68 59 71 78 73.05
MRP- Cornejo, Crisanto R. 68 87 78 86 79 50 80 60 73.7
246.
279.
247. Buenafe, Avelina R. 78 80 75 75 70 55 72 80 72.75
MRP- Cruz, Raymundo 75 81 79 85 72 57 68 75 72.95
248. Bueno, Anastacio F. 73 78 71 78 71 67 71 60 71.15 280.
249. Borres, Maximino L. 67 85 62 91 72 63 76 80 70.9 MRP- Cunanan, Jose C. 78 92 63 83 76 72 68 65 72.4
281.
MRP- Cabegin, Cesar V. 72 71 76 75 74 70 71 60 72.2
250. 282. Cunanan, Salvador F. 70 82 64 92 67 75 73 76 71.45
MRP- Cabello, Melecio F. 72 78 78 89 58 70 67 71 70.5 283. Cimafranca, Agustin B. 71 76 76 80 70 71 75 71 73.35
251.
284. Crisol, Getulio R. 70 91 78 85 68 55 71 50 70.8
MRP- Cabrera, Irineo M. 79 88 53 91 71 85 75 76 73.3
MRP- Dusi, Felicisimo R. 76 82 69 82 66 62 80 71 72.85
252.
285.
253. Cabreros, Paulino N. 71 79 83 84 60 62 71 50 70.85
MRP- Datu, Alfredo J. 70 75 72 86 80 55 68 79 71.5
254. Calayag, Florentino R. 69 79 66 88 69 75 68 76 70.6 286.
MRP- Calzada, Cesar de la 76 72 80 67 62 71 66 62 70.85 287. Dacuma, Luis B. 71 67 87 83 71 50 65 70 71.25
255.
MRP- Degamo, Pedro R. 73 80 82 74 80 67 67 57 73.65
256. Canabal, Isabel 70 82 81 77 78 51 75 75 73.7 288.
MRP- Cabugao, Pablo N. 76 87 69 80 58 64 78 75 71.8 289. Delgado, Vicente N. 70 84 82 84 77 52 73 50 72.65
257.
MRP- Diolazo, Ernesto A. 75 83 86 73 54 54 75 75 72.25
258. Calañgi, Mateo C. 73 93 71 87 70 66 69 62 71.8 290.
259. Canda, Benjamin S. 72 71 77 90 62 75 66 82 71.95 291. Dionisio, Jr., Guillermo 73 84 64 89 71 78 75 66 72.8
260. Cantoria, Eulogio 71 80 71 89 70 55 72 75 71 MRP- Dichoso, Alberto M. 71 77 71 81 69 75 80 70 73.65
292.
261. Capacio, Jr., Conrado 67 78 71 90 65 75 72 60 70.65
MRP- Dipasupil, Claudio R. 70 76 82 73 79 70 72 56 73.9
262. Capitulo, Alejandro P. 75 70 53 87 78 63 76 91 71.2
293.
MRP- Calupitan, Jr., Alfredo 75 93 81 76 64 75 68 56 73.15
MRP- Delgado, Abner 75 84 63 67 64 60 70 72 68.35
263.
294.
MRP- Caluya, Arsenio V. 75 86 70 87 77 52 77 82 73.9
MRP- Domingo, Dominador T. 70 69 81 82 68 63 71 75 72.2
264.
295.
MRP- Campanilla, Mariano B. 80 75 78 77 73 71 63 76 73.65
296. Ducusin, Agapito B. 70 78 53 88 75 77 62 76 68.05
265.
MRP- Duque, Antonio S. 75 77 78 86 76 72 64 75 73.9
MRP- Campos, Juan A. 66 85 83 84 67 61 80 57 73.25
297.
266.
298. Duque, Castulo 75 80 73 83 66 67 65 66 70.65
267. Cardoso, Angelita G. 78 71 73 76 79 56 69 60 71.8
299. Ebbah, Percival B. 70 80 85 76 66 63 76 75 73.95
268. Cartagena, Herminio R. 71 72 65 89 64 73 80 70 71.65
300. Edisa, Sulpicio 65 77 75 89 75 62 75 65 72
MRP- Castro, Daniel T. 65 75 77 76 85 60 75 69 73.15
269. 301. Edradan, Rosa C. 70 75 84 84 71 59 69 86 73.4
270. Cauntay, Gaudencio V. 70 78 72 73 77 69 64 80 71.2 MRP- Enage, Jacinto N. 66 70 88 93 72 67 65 75 73.2
302.
271. Castro, Pedro L. de 70 68 69 87 76 75 72 70 73.35
MRP- Encarnacion, Alfonso B. 75 86 73 81 63 77 69 75 72.65
272. Cerio, Juan A. 75 82 75 86 60 54 76 75 71.75
303.
273. Colorado, Alfonso R. 68 75 80 74 77 66 67 80 72.6
304. Encarnacion, Cesar 65 78 58 68 66 64 75 78 67.1
274. Chavez, Doroteo M. 73 65 79 84 73 69 66 84 73.1
305. Estoista, Agustin A. 78 76 74 86 58 67 70 76 71.7
275. Chavez, Honorato A. 77 76 79 86 74 53 71 75 73.65
MRP- Fabros, Jose B. 66 75 80 82 80 71 67 70 73.05
MRP- Cobangbang, Orlando 69 81 74 82 76 61 78 80 73.85 306.
MRP- Fajardo, Balbino P. 77 69 82 83 65 60 75 75 73.9 339. Grageda, Jose M. A. 70 85 72 67 70 60 73 73 70.75
307.
340. Guzman, Juan de 75 86 69 84 64 79 75 76 73.6
308. Fajardo, Genaro P. 70 79 77 79 79 50 73 75 72.5
MRP- Guzman, Mateo de 76 79 79 73 72 69 68 80 73.9
309. Evangelista, Felicidad P. 75 75 72 87 63 63 77 70 72.15 341.
310. Familara, Raymundo Z. 68 75 87 83 64 65 68 65 71.85 342. Guzman, Salvador B. 71 61 74 72 61 66 78 75 70.75
311. Fariñas, Dionisio 70 78 89 66 65 75 70 50 72.75 343. Guzman, Salvador T. de 75 84 64 81 74 61 78 58 71.75
312. Favila, Hilario B. 71 84 74 70 75 67 73 59 72.2 344. Habelito, Geronimo E. 71 76 71 87 73 60 67 55 69.65
MRP- Feliciano, Alberto I. 71 69 70 85 69 81 72 70 72.25 345. Hedriana, Naterno G. 75 68 84 76 66 58 76 60 72.9
313.
346. Hernandez, Quintin B. 67 75 72 81 72 72 66 76 70.6
MRP- Fernando, Lope F. 73 77 86 79 70 76 64 50 73
1952
314.
347. Homeres, Agustin R. 73 84 65 86 70 77 63 76 70.7
MRP- Flores, Dionisio S. 78 72 77 83 67 60 68 73 72.05
315. 348. Ines, Leonilo F. 65 88 71 88 77 73 61 70 70.55
MRP- Fortich, Benjamin B. 70 82 70 70 78 65 64 75 70.35 349. Jamer, Alipio S. 68 75 83 89 80 61 65 50 72
316.
MRP- Ibasco, Jr., Emiliano M. 75 65 68 85 76 70 83 54 73.8
MRP- Fuente, Jose S. de la 76 88 72 74 60 71 79 79 73.55 350.
317.
MRP- Jardinico, Jr., Emilio 73 86 72 78 82 67 67 64 72.8
318. Fohmantes, Nazario S. 72 79 71 77 68 61 76 60 70.9 351.
MRP- Fuggan, Lorenzo B. 76 81 74 69 71 71 73 60 72.85 MRP- Jaen, Justiniano F. 76 75 78 84 71 66 70 77 73.85
319. 352.
320. Gabuya, Jesus S. 70 83 82 83 70 63 75 65 73.75 353. Jaring, Antonio S. 72 77 79 70 72 57 71 50 70.75
321. Galang, Victor N. 69 83 84 76 70 57 71 60 71.95 MRP- Javier, Aquilino M. 75 84 79 78 77 61 66 66 73.05
354.
322. Gaerlan, Manuel L. 73 87 77 90 67 61 72 75 73.15
355. Jomuad, Francisco 75 75 72 88 78 58 76 43 72.4
323. Galem, Nestor R. 72 79 86 78 60 61 75 70 73.05
MRP- Jose, Nestor L. 78 61 64 73 68 76 64 80 69.7
324. Gallardo, Jose Pe B. 75 88 75 75 63 70 70 65 71.85
356.
MRP- Gallos, Cirilo B. 70 78 84 91 80 51 65 70 72.85
357. La Q, Jose M. 75 71 75 72 70 67 81 59 73.5
325.
358. Leon, Brigido C. de 67 75 78 91 78 51 72 80 72.55
326. Galindo, Eulalio D. 70 89 87 65 78 71 62 62 73.4
359. Leones, Constante B. 68 81 79 84 73 60 77 60 73
327. Galman, Patrocinio G. 72 72 80 85 71 56 70 53 71.15
360. Liboro, Horacio T. 72 69 80 87 73 62 70 61 72.4
328. Gamalinda, Carlos S. 76 79 81 86 67 63 69 55 72.55
361. Llanera, Cesar L. 77 81 80 78 64 59 75 63 73
329. Gamboa, Antonio G. 71 67 70 72 76 60 75 68 70.95
362. Lomontod, Jose P. 75 76 69 70 73 76 74 75 73.2
330. Gannod, Jose A. 69 80 75 81 68 62 73 68 71.25
363. Luna, Lucito 70 75 69 83 59 53 74 75 68.4
MRP- Garcia, Matias N. 67 78 74 90 79 59 76 65 72.8
331. MRP- Luz, Lauro L. 76 90 78 88 64 58 75 77 73.95
364.
MRP- Ganete, Carmelo 75 87 77 82 74 57 68 81 73.3
332. MRP- Macasaet, Tomas S. 73 81 72 83 66 75 72 70 72.5
365.
333. Gilbang, Gaudioso R. 75 67 80 82 67 57 64 70 70.5
366. Magbiray, Godofredo V. 80 67 84 76 70 62 65 68 73.05
334. Gofredo, Claro C. 68 78 72 86 78 52 70 76 70.9
367. Majarais, Rodolfo P. 70 62 64 82 88 75 71 79 72.85
335. Gomez, Jose S. 71 76 71 81 76 63 69 62 70.85
MRP- Makabenta, Eduardo 75 90 77 83 59 71 72 78 73.3
MRP- Gosiaoco, Lorenzo V. 68 93 85 78 64 69 70 54 72.35
368.
336.
MRP- Malapit, Justiniano S. 74 83 74 89 58 60 72 76 71.1
MRP- Gonzales, Rafael C. 77 75 71 89 55 70 70 60 70.05
369.
337.
370. Maloles, Iluminado M. 70 87 73 76 77 50 76 76 72.3
MRP- Gracia, Eulalia L. de 66 68 90 84 77 59 69 65 73.3
338. 371. Maniquis, Daniel R. 75 80 73 91 69 71 65 70 72.1
372. Maraña, Arsenio 65 79 60 72 73 51 75 86 67.9 402. Ortiz, Melencio T. 71 75 78 81 66 67 70 78 72.1
373. Marasigan, Napoleon 75 71 83 75 69 62 69 70 72.75 MRP- Pablo, Fedelino S. 72 64 76 86 72 61 76 75 72.95
403.
MRP- Marco, Jaime P. 75 67 74 76 64 75 75 57 71.9
374. 404. Pacifico, Vicente V. 76 79 69 80 76 52 72 80 71.95
MRP- Martir, Osmundo P. 70 86 76 78 72 71 75 53 72.95 MRP- Paderna, Perfecto D. 75 69 72 75 78 58 75 70 72.6
375. 405.
MRP- Masancay, Amando E. 73 87 75 77 72 50 78 80 73.2 406. Padlan, Crispin M. 71 66 76 79 68 67 74 66 71.65
376.
407. Padilla, Jose C. 70 65 67 82 78 75 78 75 73.3
MRP- Mati-ong, Ignacio T. 62 87 72 79 73 76 69 77 71.3
408. Padilla, Jr., Estanislao 71 88 78 86 59 75 78 50 72.95
377.
E.
378. Mara, Guillermo L. 70 78 78 89 75 67 66 65 72.35
MRP- Palma, Bartolome 67 81 80 82 71 75 69 75 73.25
MRP- Mercado, Felipe A. 73 77 82 82 78 52 69 85 73.9 409.
379.
MRP- Papa, Angel A. 75 72 85 85 77 59 63 71 73.45
MRP- Miculob, Eugenio P. 70 82 73 86 77 52 79 65 72.8 410.
380.
MRP- Parayno, Mario V. 71 88 74 89 69 66 76 73 73.65
381. Mison, Rafael M. Jr., 79 78 73 75 71 68 69 53 71.95 411.
MRP- Monponbanua, Antonio 79 79 68 88 64 78 69 83 73.1 412. Pariña, Santos L. 70 87 85 77 64 67 63 76 71.85
382. D.
MRP- Pasion, Anastacio 63 80 68 81 82 79 76 58 72.55
MRP- Montero, Leodegario C. 72 89 69 89 70 68 70 75 72.15 413.
383.
414. Pastrana, Rizal R. 69 76 71 76 68 63 77 83 71.65
384. Morada, Servillano S. 75 76 67 71 65 66 75 76 70.9
MRP- Paulin, Jose O. 70 66 80 87 75 50 65 80 70.9
385. Mocorro, Generoso 78 84 78 84 60 73 68 70 73 415.
MRP- Mosquera, Estanislao L. 75 78 75 85 72 55 77 66 73.15 MRP- Pelaez, Jr., Vicente C. 79 87 73 83 69 71 68 65 73.2
386. 416.
387. Motus, Rodentor P. 80 78 70 94 72 75 70 57 73.75 417. Peña, Jesus 75 75 75 62 75 70 60 66 70.4
388. Macario, Pedro R. 70 67 74 86 78 63 72 66 72.15 418. Perez, Toribio R. 71 64 81 92 69 58 67 70 71.25
MRP- Nadela, Geredion T. 72 64 64 81 73 50 75 75 69.15 419. Pestaño, Melquiades 77 81 74 87 59 68 76 75 73.2
389.
MRP- Pido, Serafin C. 77 81 72 82 69 71 60 75 71.15
MRP- Nazareno, Romeo P. 67 70 71 76 76 79 75 57 72.05 420.
390.
421. Pinlac, Filemon 67 76 74 86 65 79 65 72 70.55
391. Nieto, Benedicto S. 69 79 77 77 72 62 76 76 72.9
422. Poblete, Celso B. 72 79 82 76 66 64 74 50 72.15
MRP- Noguera, Raymundo 71 86 81 80 73 56 72 70 73.15
MRP- Piza, Luz 68 70 75 87 74 67 64 75 70.8
392.
423.
MRP- Nodado, Domiciano R. 70 70 69 73 57 37 64 72 63.6
424. Puzon, Eduardo S. 72 80 81 69 72 53 67 70 71.05
393.
425. Quetulio, Josefina D. 75 90 60 93 64 78 76 83 72.9
394. Nono, Pacifico G. 67 77 78 67 75 59 71 76 71.35
MRP- Quipanes, Melchor V. 69 88 79 82 65 62 71 66 71.55
MRP- Nuval, Manuel R. 78 72 67 90 72 68 78 67 73.65
426.
395.
MRP- Quietson, Bayani R. 73 75 76 77 70 81 71 53 72.85
396. Ocampo, Augusto 75 90 77 72 69 55 65 67 60.7
427.
397. Oliveros, Amado A. 72 75 68 72 84 50 75 79 71.9
428. Racho, Macario D. 68 75 81 82 78 53 66 54 70.55
398. Opiña, Jr., Pedro 76 77 74 67 73 66 68 70 71.85
429. Ramirez, Sabas P. 71 80 73 87 62 62 75 80 71.65
MRP- Olaviar, Jose O. 70 62 85 81 74 50 68 79 71.8
MRP- Raffiñan, Jose A. 80 83 79 79 62 72 68 65 73.25
399.
430.
MRP- Olandesca, Per O. 70 91 76 87 72 66 70 79 73.45
MRP- Ramos, Patricio S. 75 87 76 75 72 72 61 75 72.25
400.
431.
401. Orden, Apolonio J. 72 65 84 86 66 50 72 68 71.45
MRP- Ramos-Balmori, 78 84 76 90 48 75 80 65 73.45
432. Manuela 463. Songco, Felicisimo G. 70 68 82 84 60 69 76 65 73.35
MRP- Raro, Celso 75 81 76 67 75 77 55 77 71.4 464. Soriano, Aniceto S. 64 79 77 80 80 53 70 65 70.7
433.
465. Suarez, Pablo D. 73 85 70 87 76 70 64 70 71.9
MRP- Rayos, Victor S. 75 86 79 91 71 67 67 70 73.9
MRP- Sybico, Jesus L. 79 70 70 72 75 75 72 60 73.05
434.
466.
435. Revilla, Mariano S. 75 78 81 90 70 54 69 81 73.35
467. Tabaque, Benjamin R. 69 68 77 79 74 68 72 60 71.85
436. Reyes, Abdon L. 72 64 81 78 76 73 69 53 72.85
MRP- Tan Kiang, Clarita 81 79 72 80 62 75 73 80 73.95
437. Reyes, Domingo B. 72 87 78 83 72 75 62 70 72.7 468.
438. Reyes, Francisco M. 75 85 84 68 75 71 68 50 73.9 MRP- Tando, Amado T. 71 82 78 83 71 61 71 60 72
469.
439. Reyes, Lozano M. 80 57 78 79 78 65 64 79 73.35
470. Tasico, Severo E. 71 69 75 89 70 75 67 63 71.65
MRP- Reyes, Oscar R. 75 75 82 82 76 64 68 60 73.65
440. 471. Tiburcio, Ismael P. 73 82 72 93 76 57 68 54 71.15
441. Rigonan, Cesar V. 71 85 65 86 75 70 76 70 72.7 MRP- Tiongson, Federico T. 70 70 76 84 77 75 75 50 73.45
472.
442. Rivera, Honorio 71 56 70 90 71 65 75 71 71.2
MRP- Tolentino, Jesus C. 75 89 63 84 85 73 73 50 73.4
MRP- Rivero, Buenaventura A. 72 88 72 94 68 73 66 80 72.6
473.
443.
474. Torrijas, Alfredo A. 77 66 67 83 68 75 71 63 71.3
MRP- Robles, Enrique 75 77 75 77 82 64 69 70 73.7
444. MRP- Tobias, Artemio M. 69 58 74 81 71 55 65 57 67.55
475.
445. Rodriguez, Orestes 76 75 76 63 69 77 65 78 72.25
Arellano MRP- Trillana, Jr., Apolonio 76 86 76 86 70 68 75 50 73.8
476.
446. Roldan, Jose V. 67 80 79 83 73 71 75 70 73.9
MRP- Trinidad, Manuel O. 66 91 83 75 63 66 67 65 70.8
447. Rosario, Adelaida R. del 80 75 65 70 68 72 80 70 73.15
477.
448. Rosario, Restituto F. del 75 75 79 90 68 65 66 63 72.1
478. Trinidad, Pedro O. 66 78 78 85 78 51 64 75 70.8
MRP- Sabelino, Conrado S. 71 81 69 75 77 71 75 70 72.95
MRP- Udarbe, Flavio J. 80 82 77 82 67 56 68 75 72.6
449.
479.
450. San Juan, Damaso 77 86 72 89 59 76 65 72 71.6
480. Umali, Osmundo C. 68 75 81 80 71 69 68 60 71.7
451. Sañiel, Felix L. 72 93 76 80 67 75 66 62 72.1
481. Umayam, Juanito C. 77 75 87 85 56 56 66 60 71
452. Samaniego, Jesus B. 75 80 76 72 60 67 68 70 70.6
MRP- Usita, Gelacio U. 75 72 75 74 73 76 71 70 73.55
MRP- Sandoval, Emmanuel M. 75 83 70 83 77 67 77 60 73.95 482.
453.
483. Valino, Francisco M. 72 81 80 84 62 78 71 75 73.7
MRP- Sanidad, Emmanuel Q. 71 75 81 90 62 64 76 68 72.95
484. Varela, Dominador M. 67 75 81 86 72 57 81 70 73.85
454.
485. Vega, Macairog L. de 78 62 79 87 70 70 71 65 73.8
455. Santiago, Jr., Cristobal 75 76 84 93 63 65 59 70 71.8
MRP- Velasco, Emmanuel D. 71 80 74 85 60 66 76 76 71.85
456. Santillan, Juanito Ll. 76 89 83 83 63 58 65 52 71.25
486.
MRP- Santos, Rodolfo C. 75 75 78 82 73 76 66 70 73.7
487. Velez, Maria E. 73 70 89 80 56 50 72 67 71.05
457.
MRP- Venal, Artemio V. 78 91 58 67 76 55 75 73 73.65
MRP- Santos, Ruperto M. 67 54 69 76 63 64 71 60 66.75
488.
458.
489. Venus, Conrado B. 69 81 74 85 62 66 72 77 77.05
MRP- Santos, Aquilino C. 72 71 73 79 73 79 71 85 73.8
459. MRP- Verzosa, Federico B. 75 79 72 88 76 68 74 59 73.7
490.
MRP- Santos, Rufino A. 75 81 79 85 74 72 66 54 73.3
460. MRP- Villafuerte, Eduardo V. 75 83 70 76 64 64 75 65 71.2
491.
461. Suanding, Bantas 75 67 67 92 79 59 76 76 73.1
MRP- Villanueva, Cecilio C. 75 85 79 88 66 77 67 70 73.95
MRP- Sulit, Feliz M. 76 79 76 78 72 75 68 67 73.5
492.
462.
493. Villar, Custodio R. 73 69 70 88 76 66 69 50 70.75
MRP- Villaseñor, Leonidas F. 80 85 67 77 62 75 76 73 73.15 1952 70 75 69 83 59 53 74 75 68.4
494.
8. Maraña, Arsenio s.
495. Viterbo, Jose H. 80 77 65 93 70 65 65 65 70.65
1949 72 68 68 75 75 72 60 75 69.35
496. Yaranon, Pedro 70 77 76 85 72 50 75 75 71.85
MRP- Yasay, Mariano R. 75 75 72 76 63 77 70 60 71.1 1952 65 79 60 72 73 51 75 86 67.9
497. 9. Montano, Manuel M.
MRP- Ygay, Venancio M. 73 80 83 84 62 59 72 77 72.65
498. 1951 61 60 58 60 70 63 75 64 64.8

499. Yulo, Jr., Teodoro 73 82 78 75 60 81 75 75 73.95 1952 70 77 65 79 66 52 70 50 66.4

500. Zamora, Alberto 70 65 76 79 62 77 69 82 71.3 1953 78 64 66 68 81 50 71 78 70.65


501. Rigonan, Felipe C. 70 79 69 89 76 62 71 64 71.2 10. Peña, Jesus S.
1950 25 75 45 75 45 52 46 71 46.2
A list of those who petitioned for the consolidation of their grades in subjects passed in
previous examinations, showing the years in which they took the examinations together with 1951 70 77 65 79 66 52 70 50 66.4
their grades and averages, and those who had filed motions for reconsideration which were 1952 75 75 75 62 75 70 60 66 70.4
denied, indicated by the initials MRD, follows:
11. Placido, Sr., Isidro
PETITIONERS UNDER REPUBLIC ACT NO. 72 1950 68 78 70 75 69 70 58 69 67.75
1951 65 62 75 60 73 57 75 71 66.8
Civ. Land Merc. Int. Pol. Crim. Rem. Leg. Gen. Av. 12. Rementizo, Filemon S.
1. Amao, Sulpicio M. 1949 65 75 72 75 60 75 55 85 66.65
1946 68 67 76 76 73 73 49 50 66.5 1951 68 57 48 60 91 66 55 75 64.05
1950 59 80 67 77 62 80 71 57 67.4 1952 68 53 68 67 58 56 75 64 65.7
2. Baldo, Olegario Ga. 13. Amao, Sulpicio M.
1951 65 76 58 55 59 63 75 72 64.9 1952 67 80 51 69 69 77 73 53 66.35
1952 65 68 75 84 72 59 73 57 69.75 1953 65 67 78 74 75 62 69 80 70.9
1953 57 74 68 68 76 52 71 76 66.7 14. Rodulfa, Juan T.
3. Blanco, Jose B. 1951 67 60 70 65 68 56 75 66 67.75
MRD-1949 75 75 70 75 77 76 60 90 72.15 1952 70 71 67 78 67 75 71 70 70.1
1951 64 71 58 65 68 70 75 71 66.95 15. Sanchez, Juan J.
4. Condeno, Mateo 1948 39 69 82 75 76 72 55 50 63.5
1950 71 80 62 75 75 81 55 92 69.3 MRD-1949 67 56 69 75 72 77 60 75 68
1951 70 60 61 65 77 64 67 81 67.85 1951 70 59 55 60 68 57 78 67 65.8
5. Ducusin, Agapito B. 16. Santos, Constantino
MRD-1949 69 70 76 73 76 71 55 60 68.65 1952 62 76 54 82 72 77 66 65 66.65
1950 60 71 55 67 67 75 56 89 68.1 1953 73 71 70 65 78 64 65 78 70.4
6. Garcia, Manuel N. 17. Santos, Salvador H.
MRD-1949 60 70 82 79 70 69 60 80 69.25 1951 60 64 55 70 68 52 70 75 62.85
1950 57 65 51 69 54 85 56 84 60.3 1952 75 64 70 81 76 55 61 75 69.1
7. Luna, Lucito A. 1953 70 71 79 65 72 54 66 80 70
1946 63 53 69 76 75 76 57 69 66.55
18. Sevilla, Macario C. 27. Lugtu, Felipe L. 62 70 78 65 78 56 69 81 69.9

MRD-1948 50 64 76 66 66 69 60 52 63.1 28. Lukman, Abdul-Hamid 76 64 67 69 73 59 73 75 70.45


29. Maloles, Jr., Benjamin G. 77 76 68 68 71 51 75 78 70.85
MRD-1949 47 66 78 64 71 86 65 85 68
30. Maloles, Julius G. 77 71 60 71 79 62 68 72 69.75
1950 35 65 40 75 63 57 27 49 45
31. Mandi, Santiago P. 65 76 70 61 79 68 75 72 71.1
MRD-1951 68 59 72 55 69 65 75 75 69.3
32. Margete, Rufino C. 70 76 66 75 85 73 71 75 72.75
1953 70 73 74 70 81 56 69 71 71.05
33. Melocoton, Nestorio B. 70 81 73 78 83 52 72 75 72.35
34. Molina, Manuel C. 75 78 70 61 75 63 66 85 70.95
Finally, with regards to the examinations of 1953, while some candidates--85 in all--presented motions
35. Muñoz, Mariano A. 75 80 86 67 74 57 68 76 73.75
for reconsideration of their grades, others invoked the provisions of Republic Act No. 972. A list of
those candidates separating those who filed mere motions for reconsideration (56) from those who 36. Navarro, Buenaventura M. 80 75 65 75 83 55 73 79 73
invoked the aforesaid Republic act, is as follows:
37. Nodado, Domiciano R. 60 67 67 50 70 50 56 75 61.7
38. Papas, Sisenando B. 65 62 71 61 70 56 66 67 66
1953 PETITIONERS FOR RECONSIDERATION
39. Pagulayan-Sy, Fernando 63 75 71 62 83 67 70 72 70.4

Civ. Land Merc. Int. Pol. Crim. Rem. Leg. Gen. Av. 40. Padula, Benjamin C. 70 77 54 62 74 78 75 68 69.05

1. Acenas, Calixto R. 73 70 68 62 82 51 67 77 73.45 41. Pasno, Enrique M. 78 72 66 54 71 58 72 78 69.85


42. Peña, Jr., Narciso 70 95 81 78 67 66 67 73 72.55
2. Alcantara, Pedro N. 67 70 75 85 87 54 71 80 72.8
3. Alejandro, Exequiel 67 72 71 75 80 76 75 77 73.4 43. Peralta, Rodolfo P. 70 70 52 81 68 63 59 69 63.7

4. Andres, Gregorio M. 70 73 86 58 79 50 71 78 72.7 44. Pigar, Leopoldo R. 76 75 78 61 72 72 71 79 73.75


45. Publico, Paciano L. 68 69 76 76 70 59 74 67 70.6
5. Arnaiz, Antonio E. 66 80 76 58 79 68 77 81 73.4
6. Asis, Floriano U. de 66 78 75 81 77 55 73 69 71.25 46. Radaza, Leovigildo 75 78 76 61 77 50 71 86 72.2

7. Bacaiso, Celestino M. 71 65 76 68 76 50 75 70 70.95 47. Ramos, Bernardo M. 64 62 75 93 81 52 66 80 70.1


48. Rabaino, Andres D. 68 72 75 73 78 55 69 76 70.65
8. Bala, Florencio F. 64 82 47 70 82 58 75 82 67
9. Baldo, Olegario A. 57 74 68 68 76 52 71 76 66.7 49. Ravanera, Oscar N. 70 77 80 71 82 62 69 78 73.6

10. Barrios, Benjamin O. 65 71 76 75 80 62 83 73 73.95 50. Renovilla, Jose M. 65 75 80 68 79 52 62 78 69.5

11. Buhay, Eduardo L. 73 76 71 91 76 61 74 78 73.35 51. Sabaot, Solomon B. 69 73 80 69 82 69 69 79 73.85

12. Burgos, Dominador C. 72 80 89 61 66 37 69 68 70.05 52. Sumaway, Ricardo S. 66 76 69 76 74 56 72 68 69.1


53. Torrefiel, Sofronio O. 70 77 74 75 73 50 68 72 69.55
13. Cariño, Eldo J. 79 81 60 75 74 74 76 74 73
14. Casar, Dimapuro 67 73 84 79 77 61 71 74 73.35 54. Vera, Federico V. de 60 61 47 77 69 50 67 77 60.9

15. Castañeda, Gregorio 70 73 80 71 75 70 73 78 73.95 55. Viray, Venancio Bustos 65 67 67 52 73 64 71 65 67.15


56. Ylaya, Angela P. (Miss) 63 70 56 75 68 54 70 77 64.5
16. Estrellado, Benjamin R. 67 79 64 73 82 62 71 74 70.2
17. Fabunan, Edilberto C. 70 72 68 69 77 60 76 74 71.1
PETITIONERS UNDER REPUBLIC ACT NO. 972
18. Feril, Domingo B. 75 71 84 65 70 60 65 70 71.6
19. Fernandez, Alejandro G. 65 75 87 80 81 63 61 80 72.8
Civ. Land Merc. Int. Pol. Crim. Rem. Leg. Gen.
20. Gapus, Rosita S. (Miss) 76 80 86 77 64 74 66 69 73.9 Av.
21. Garcia, Rafael B. 70 86 70 75 73 63 73 75 71.65
22. Gracia, Miguel L. de 73 68 75 59 80 51 72 71 71
1. Ala, Narciso 70 71 73 59 73 74 81 77 73.5
23. Gungon, Armando G. 68 76 76 84 77 57 77 83 73.6
2. Alcantara, Pedro N. 67 70 75 85 87 54 71 80 72.8
24. Gutierrez, Antonio S. 68 77 66 70 72 59 71 74 69.1
3. Arellano, Antonio L. 74 66 73 60 78 63 78 72 72.9
25. Ilejay, Abraham I. 77 70 76 77 81 62 70 68 73.7
4. Buhay, Eduardo L. 73 76 71 91 76 61 74 78 73.35
26. Leon, Benjamin La. De 66 66 75 70 77 55 71 82 70.35
5. Calautit, Celestino R. 71 78 84 75 75 61 68 72 73.2
6. Casuncad, Sulvio P. 61 73 82 69 81 68 71 84 73.05 Unsuccessful candidates shall not be required to take another examination in any subject in
which they have obtained a rating of 70 per cent or higher and such rating shall be taken
7. Enriquez, Pelagio y 84 69 76 75 82 50 58 79 72.05 into account in determining their general average in any subsequent
Concepcion examinations: Provided, however, That if the candidate fails to get a general average of 70
8. Estonina, Severino 80 74 64 89 81 56 68 82 72.4 per cent in his third examination, he shall lose the benefit of having already passed some
subjects and shall be required to the examination in all the subjects.
9. Fernandez, Alejandro Q. 65 75 87 80 81 63 61 80 72.8
10. Fernandez, Luis N. 70 75 77 75 78 67 72 73 73.35 SEC. 16. Admission and oath of successful applicants. — Any applicant who has obtained a
11. Figueroa, Alfredo A. 70 75 87 78 75 50 68 68 72.3 general average of 70 per cent in all subjects without falling below 50 per cent in any
examination held after the 4th day of July, 1946, or who has been otherwise found to be
12. Formilleza, Pedro 65 75 89 68 83 51 70 75 73.25 entitled to admission to the bar, shall be allowed to take and subscribe before the Supreme
13. Garcia, Manuel M. 69 68 83 83 73 62 62 70 71 Court the corresponding oath of office. (Arts. 4 and 5, 8, No. 12).

14. Grospe, Vicente E. 68 75 78 66 79 61 69 82 71.6


With the bill was an Explanatory Note, the portion pertinent to the matter before us being:
15. Galema, Nestor R. (1952) 72 79 86 78 60 61 75 70 73.05
16. Jacobo, Rafael F. 76 76 75 74 76 50 72 76 72.3 It seems to be unfair that unsuccessful candidates at bar examinations should be compelled
17. Macalindong, Reinerio L. 67 77 79 79 74 72 68 77 72.75 to repeat even those subjects which they have previously passed. This is not the case in
any other government examination. The Rules of Court have therefore been amended in
18. Mangubat, Antonio M. 70 70 78 61 80 74 62 70 71.45 this measure to give a candidate due credit for any subject which he has previously passed
19. Montano, Manuel M. 78 64 66 68 81 50 71 78 70.65 with a rating of 75 per cent or higher."
20. Plomantes, Marcos 73 67 74 58 68 70 76 71 71.6
Senate Bill No. 12 having been approved by Congress on May 3, 1951, the President requested the
21. Ramos, Eugenio R. 70 80 76 67 72 69 72 79 72.6 comments of this Tribunal before acting on the same. The comment was signed by seven Justices
22. Reyes, Juan R. 71 73 77 76 81 59 72 74 73.2 while three chose to refrain from making any and one took no part. With regards to the matter that
interests us, the Court said:
23. Reyes, Santiago R. 65 78 83 60 76 75 70 70 72.9
24. Rivera, Eulogio J. 65 67 78 74 75 62 69 80 70.9
The next amendment is of section 14 of Rule 127. One part of this amendment provides that
25. Santos, Constantino P. 73 71 70 65 78 64 65 78 70.4 if a bar candidate obtains 70 per cent or higher in any subject, although failing to pass the
examination, he need not be examined in said subject in his next examination. This is a sort
26. Santos, Salvador H. 70 71 79 65 72 54 66 80 70 of passing the Bar Examination on the installment plan, one or two or three subjects at a
27. Sevilla, Macario C. 70 73 74 70 81 56 69 71 71.05 time. The trouble with this proposed system is that although it makes it easier and more
convenient for the candidate because he may in an examination prepare himself on only
28. Villavicencio, Jose A. 78 75 70 67 69 77 64 77 73.2 one or two subjects so as to insure passing them, by the time that he has passed the last
29. Viray, Ruperto G. 76 73 76 73 80 58 68 83 73.25 required subjects, which may be several years away from the time that he reviewed and
passed the firs subjects, he shall have forgotten the principles and theories contained in
those subjects and remembers only those of the one or two subjects that he had last
There are the unsuccessful candidates totaling 604 directly affected by this resolution. Adding 490 reviewed and passed. This is highly possible because there is nothing in the law which
candidates who have not presented any petition, they reach a total of 1,094. requires a candidate to continue taking the Bar examinations every year in succession. The
only condition imposed is that a candidate, on this plan, must pass the examination in no
more that three installments; but there is no limitation as to the time or number of years
The Enactment of Republic Act No. 972 intervening between each examination taken. This would defeat the object and the
requirements of the law and the Court in admitting persons to the practice of law. When a
As will be observed from Annex I, this Court reduced to 72 per cent the passing general average in the person is so admitted, it is to be presumed and presupposed that he possesses the
bar examination of august and November of 1946; 69 per cent in 1947; 70 per cent in 1948; 74 per knowledge and proficiency in the law and the knowledge of all law subjects required in bar
cent in 1949; maintaining the prescribed 75 per cent since 1950, but raising to 75 per cent those who examinations, so as presently to be able to practice the legal profession and adequately
obtained 74 per cent since 1950. This caused the introduction in 1951, in the Senate of the Philippines render the legal service required by prospective clients. But this would not hold true of the
of Bill No. 12 which was intended to amend Sections 5, 9, 12, 14 and 16 of Rule 127 of the Rules of candidates who may have obtained a passing grade on any five subjects eight years ago,
Court, concerning the admission of attorneys-at-law to the practice of the profession. The amendments another three subjects one year later, and the last two subjects the present year. We
embrace many interesting matters, but those referring to sections 14 and 16 immediately concern us. believe that the present system of requiring a candidate to obtain a passing general average
The proposed amendment is as follows: with no grade in any subject below 50 per cent is more desirable and satisfactory. It requires
one to be all around, and prepared in all required legal subjects at the time of admission to
the practice of law.
SEC. 14. Passing average. — In order that a candidate may be deemed to have passed the
examinations successfully, he must have obtained a general average of 70 per cent without
falling below 50 per cent in any subject. In determining the average, the foregoing subjects xxx xxx xxx
shall be given the following relative weights: Civil Law, 20 per cent; Land Registration and
Mortgages, 5 per cent; Mercantile Law, 15 per cent; Criminal Law, 10 per cent; Political We now come to the last amendment, that of section 16 of Rule 127. This amendment
Law, 10 per cent; International Law, 5 per cent; Remedial Law, 20 per cent; Legal Ethics provides that any application who has obtained a general average of 70 per cent in all
and Practical Exercises, 5 per cent; Social Legislation, 5 per cent; Taxation, 5 per cent. subjects without failing below 50 per cent in any subject in any examination held after the
4th day of July, 1946, shall be allowed to take and subscribe the corresponding oath of petitions of those who may have failed to obtain the passing average fixed for that year.
office. In other words, Bar candidates who obtained not less than 70 per cent in any Said provision also sets a bad precedent in that the Government would be morally obliged
examination since the year 1946 without failing below 50 per cent in any subject, despite to grant a similar privilege to those who have failed in the examinations for admission to
their non-admission to the Bar by the Supreme Court because they failed to obtain a other professions such as medicine, engineering, architecture and certified public
passing general average in any of those years, will be admitted to the Bar. This provision is accountancy.
not only prospective but retroactive in its effects.
Consequently, the bill was returned to the Congress of the Philippines, but it was not repassed by 2/3
We have already stated in our comment on the next preceding amendment that we are not vote of each House as prescribed by section 20, article VI of the Constitution. Instead Bill No. 371 was
exactly in favor of reducing the passing general average from 75 per cent to 70 per cent to presented in the Senate. It reads as follows:
govern even in the future. As to the validity of making such reduction retroactive, we have
serious legal doubts. We should not lose sight of the fact that after every bar examinations,
the Supreme Court passes the corresponding resolution not only admitting to the Bar those AN ACT TO FIX THE PASSING MARKS FOR BAR EXAMINATIONS FROM 1946 UP TO
who have obtained a passing general average grade, but also rejecting and denying the AND INCLUDING 1953
petitions for reconsideration of those who have failed. The present amendment would have
the effect of repudiating, reversing and revoking the Supreme Court's resolution denying Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in Congress
and rejecting the petitions of those who may have obtained an average of 70 per cent or assembled:
more but less than the general passing average fixed for that year. It is clear that this
question involves legal implications, and this phase of the amendment if finally enacted into
law might have to go thru a legal test. As one member of the Court remarked during the SECTION 1. Notwithstanding the provisions of section 14, Rule 127 of the Rules of Court,
discussion, when a court renders a decision or promulgate a resolution or order on the basis any bar candidate who obtained a general average of 70 per cent in any bar examinations
of and in accordance with a certain law or rule then in force, the subsequent amendment or after July 4, 1946 up to the August 1951 Bar examinations; 71 per cent in the 1952 bar
even repeal of said law or rule may not affect the final decision, order, or resolution already examinations; 72 per cent in the 1953 bar examinations; 73 per cent in the 1954 bar
promulgated, in the sense of revoking or rendering it void and of no effect. examinations; 74 per cent in 1955 bar examinations without a candidate obtaining a grade
below 50 per cent in any subject, shall be allowed to take and subscribe the corresponding
oath of office as member of the Philippine Bar; Provided, however, That 75 per cent passing
Another aspect of this question to be considered is the fact that members of the bar are general average shall be restored in all succeeding examinations; and Provided, finally,
officers of the courts, including the Supreme Court. When a Bar candidate is admitted to the That for the purpose of this Act, any exact one-half or more of a fraction, shall be considered
Bar, the Supreme Court impliedly regards him as a person fit, competent and qualified to be as one and included as part of the next whole number.
its officer. Conversely, when it refused and denied admission to the Bar to a candidate who
in any year since 1946 may have obtained a general average of 70 per cent but less than
that required for that year in order to pass, the Supreme Court equally and impliedly SEC. 2. Any bar candidate who obtained a grade of 75 per cent in any subject in any bar
considered and declared that he was not prepared, ready, competent and qualified to be its examination after July 4, 1945 shall be deemed to have passed in such subject or subjects
officer. The present amendment giving retroactivity to the reduction of the passing general and such grade or grades shall be included in computing the passing general average that
average runs counter to all these acts and resolutions of the Supreme Court and practically said candidate may obtain in any subsequent examinations that he may take.
and in effect says that a candidate not accepted, and even rejected by the Court to be its
officer because he was unprepared, undeserving and unqualified, nevertheless and in spite
SEC. 3. This bill shall take effect upon its approval.
of all, must be admitted and allowed by this Court to serve as its officer. We repeat, that this
is another important aspect of the question to be carefully and seriously considered.
With the following explanatory note:
The President vetoed the bill on June 16, 1951, stating the following:
This is a revised Bar bill to meet the objections of the President and to afford another
opportunity to those who feel themselves discriminated by the Supreme Court from 1946 to
I am fully in accord with the avowed objection of the bill, namely, to elevate the standard of
1951 when those who would otherwise have passed the bar examination but were arbitrarily
the legal profession and maintain it on a high level. This is not achieved, however, by
not so considered by altering its previous decisions of the passing mark. The Supreme
admitting to practice precisely a special class who have failed in the bar examination,
Court has been altering the passing mark from 69 in 1947 to 74 in 1951. In order to cure the
Moreover, the bill contains provisions to which I find serious fundamental objections.
apparent arbitrary fixing of passing grades and to give satisfaction to all parties concerned,
it is proposed in this bill a gradual increase in the general averages for passing the bar
Section 5 provides that any applicant who has obtained a general average of 70 per cent in examinations as follows; For 1946 to 1951 bar examinations, 70 per cent; for 1952 bar
all subjects without failing below 50 per cent in any subject in any examination held after the examination, 71 per cent; for 1953 bar examination, 72 per cent; for 1954 bar examination,
4th day of July, 1946, shall be allowed to take and subscribed the corresponding oath of 73 percent; and for 1955 bar examination, 74 per cent. Thus in 1956 the passing mark will
office. This provision constitutes class legislation, benefiting as it does specifically one group be restored with the condition that the candidate shall not obtain in any subject a grade of
of persons, namely, the unsuccessful candidates in the 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949 and 1950 below 50 per cent. The reason for relaxing the standard 75 per cent passing grade, is the
bar examinations. tremendous handicap which students during the years immediately after the Japanese
occupation has to overcome such as the insufficiency of reading materials and the
inadequacy of the preparation of students who took up law soon after the liberation. It is
The same provision undertakes to revoke or set aside final resolutions of the Supreme believed that by 1956 the preparation of our students as well as the available reading
Court made in accordance with the law then in force. It should be noted that after every bar materials will be under normal conditions, if not improved from those years preceding the
examination the Supreme Court passes the corresponding resolution not only admitting to last world war.
the Bar those who have obtained a passing general average but also rejecting and denying
the petitions for reconsideration of those who have failed. The provision under consideration
would have the effect of revoking the Supreme Court's resolution denying and rejecting the
In this will we eliminated altogether the idea of having our Supreme Court assumed the the same views they expressed on Senate Bill No. 12 passed by Congress in May, 1951,
supervision as well as the administration of the study of law which was objected to by the contained in the first indorsement of the undersigned dated June 5, 1951, to the Assistant
President in the Bar Bill of 1951. Executive Secretary.

The President in vetoing the Bar Bill last year stated among his objections that the bill would
admit to the practice of law "a special class who failed in the bar examination". He (Sgd.) RICARDO PARAS
considered the bill a class legislation. This contention, however, is not, in good conscience,
correct because Congress is merely supplementing what the Supreme Court have already
established as precedent by making as low as 69 per cent the passing mark of those who
took the Bar examination in 1947. These bar candidates for who this bill should be enacted, The President allowed the period within which the bill should be signed to pass without vetoing it, by
considered themselves as having passed the bar examination on the strength of the virtue of which it became a law on June 21, 1953 (Sec. 20, Art. VI, Constitution) numbered 972 (many
established precedent of our Supreme Court and were fully aware of the insurmountable times erroneously cited as No. 974).
difficulties and handicaps which they were unavoidably placed. We believe that such
precedent cannot or could not have been altered, constitutionally, by the Supreme Court, It may be mentioned in passing that 1953 was an election year, and that both the President and the
without giving due consideration to the rights already accrued or vested in the bar author of the Bill were candidates for re-election, together, however, they lost in the polls
candidates who took the examination when the precedent was not yet altered, or in effect,
was still enforced and without being inconsistent with the principles of their previous
resolutions.

If this bill would be enacted, it shall be considered as a simple curative act or corrective
statute which Congress has the power to enact. The requirement of a "valid classification"
as against class legislation, is very expressed in the following American Jurisprudence:

A valid classification must include all who naturally belong to the class, all who possess a
common disability, attribute, or classification, and there must be a "natural" and substantial
differentiation between those included in the class and those it leaves untouched. When a
class is accepted by the Court as "natural" it cannot be again split and then have the
dissevered factions of the original unit designated with different rules established for each.
(Fountain Park Co. vs. Rensier, 199 Ind. 95, N. E. 465 (1926).

Another case penned by Justice Cardozo: "Time with its tides brings new conditions which
must be cared for by new laws. Sometimes the new conditions affect the members of a
class. If so, the correcting statute must apply to all alike. Sometimes the condition affect only
a few. If so, the correcting statute may be as narrow as the mischief. The constitution does
not prohibit special laws inflexibly and always. It permits them when there are special evils
with which the general laws are incompetent to cope. The special public purpose will sustain
the special form. . . . The problem in the last analysis is one of legislative policy, with a wide
margin of discretion conceded to the lawmakers. Only in the case of plain abuse will there
be revision by the court. (In Williams vs. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore, 286 U. S. 36,
77 L. Ed. 1015, 53 Sup. Ct. 431). (1932)

This bill has all the earmarks of a corrective statute which always retroacts to the extent of
the care of correction only as in this case from 1946 when the Supreme Court first deviated
from the rule of 75 per cent in the Rules of Court.

For the foregoing purposes the approval of this bill is earnestly recommended.

(Sgd.) PABLO ANGELES DAVID


Senator

Without much debate, the revised bill was passed by Congress as above transcribed. The President
again asked the comments of this Court, which endorsed the following:

Respectfully returned to the Honorable, the Acting Executive Secretary, Manila, with the
information that, with respect to Senate Bill No. 371, the members of the Court are taking
EN BANC "Philippines Saw Mill & Construction,

[Adm. Case No. 98. July 13, 1953.]

In the case of the lawyer FELIX P. DAVID. The respondent therefore presented the brief not as lawyers in practice usually do, but as an agent of
Tan Tek Sy.
D. Felix P. David in his own representation.
In Civil Case No. 3658 of the Court of First Instance of Manila, entitled Malayan Saw Mill, Inc. against
The Assistant Attorney General, Mr. Ruperto Kapunan, Jr. and the Procurator, Mr. Esmeraldo Tolentino, the respondent filed a brief on September 25, 1950, requesting an order to demolish the
Umali on behalf of the government. houses of the defendants (Exhibit TO); On October 10, 1950, he filed a motion asking that the Manila
Sheriff be authorized to pay "the amount or such other amount as may be collected by the Sheriff from
time to time" (Exhibit B); on November 13, 1950, he filed another motion (Exhibit C) requesting another
SYLLABUS demolition order, signing the three writings, Exhibits A, B and C, as the plaintiff's attorney; exhibits B
through B-34 show that he was receiving payments of amounts from several defendants as the
plaintiff's attorney;
1. LAWYERS; THE TERM IS DEFINED "EXERCISE THE PROFESSION." - To practice the profession
of a lawyer is to practice the acts of that profession. The preparation and presentation of motions In defense the appellant says that he appeared as a lawyer for Tan Tek Sy from the Municipal Court of
requesting the execution of a sentence, the demolition of the houses of the defendants in the case Manila in 1948; that, upon being suspended, he had advised his client to seek another lawyer to
asking the Court to order the sheriff to deliver the amounts collected in the case are acts that are part prepare the plea that was to be presented before the Court of Appeal; that when there were only two or
of the exercise of the profession of advocacy; to present a plea and memorandum before the Court of three days left and his client could not present it, he wrote and presented it at the request of his
Appeal is to practice the profession of lawyer, because an agent can not do so; Collecting rents from client; that he prepared the plea with the intention that his client sign it, but since this was in Dagupan
the more than one hundred defendants issuing receipts and signing them as the plaintiff's lawyer and he could not sign it and there was only one day left, then he signed it as follows: "Felix P. David,
means practicing the profession. for and on behalf of the appellee. " On September 25, 1950, I filed with the Court of Appeal a
memorandum in response to the appellant, signed as is the plea.
2. ID .; ID; - The fact that the lawyer had not put in his motion asking for execution that he acted as a
lawyer but as agent and employee of the plaintiff, does not alter the nature of his services that are "In order - says the appellant - to show that I did not have the intention to disregard the suspension of
certainly professional lawyer services. Concealing that he acted as a lawyer and pretending that he the Supreme Court, I did not with the knowledge of Tan Tek Sy even identified myself as the attorney
was only an agent, his situation becomes worse; It is more guilty that, covered with a mask, shoot at for the appellee but in good faith, I signed for and on behalf of the appellee without designating that I
your enemy than the one who does it bare-faced and in view of the public. am practicing as attorney-at-law. " cralaw virtua1aw library

3. ID .; SUSPENDED LAWYER EXERCISING THE PROFESSION. - The suspended lawyer who We do not believe that the action of the respondent is justified in presenting the plea and his
practices the profession during the period of the suspension must be completely disqualified to practice memorandum on behalf of his client being suspended in the exercise of his profession; knowing that he
this profession in the Philippines with the consequent cancellation of the certificate issued in his favor was suspended, he should not have introduced them as an agent or as a lawyer; he was under an
as such lawyer. obligation not to continue serving his client before the Court of Appeal; he had to warn his client that he
was suspended in the exercise of his profession as a lawyer and should advise him to use another in
his place if he wanted representation; it should not contravene the express order of this Court; I should
DECISION have known that a non-practicing lawyer can not be brought before a court by a litigant except before a
court of law. When I present your plea and your memorandum with the following words "For and on
behalf of the Appellee" infringed Article 31 of Rule 127 which provides that "In the other courts, a party
PABLO, M .: may conduct its own litigation personally or with the help of a lawyer, and his appearance shall be
made personally or through a duly authorized member of the Forum." An agent or a proxy or a member
of the suspended Forum can not appear for a litigant.
In administrative case No. 35, the respondent was suspended for malpractice in the exercise of his
profession of attorney for a period of five years as of November 9, 1949. The respondent admits this To explain the filing of the motions in Case No. 3655, Malayan Saw Mill, Inc. against Tolentino, the
suspension in his written report presented on 17 March 1951; however, he continued to practice the respondent says that I act in good faith, that I present them not to disobey the decision of this Court but
profession within the period of suspension, November 9, 1949 to November 8, 1954. to charge their fees. As an official of the Forum, the lawyer must comply with the decision of this Court
above any other consideration. We believe that he does not act in good faith who, putting his interest in
On February 28, 1950, the petitioner presented a plea (Exhibit J) in case CA GR No. 4792-R, Tan Tek the collection of his fees, exercises the profession knowing that he was not allowed to exercise it. Even
Sy v. Maliwanag, not as a lawyer for Tan Tek Sy, but with the following words: "for and on behalf of if he had not submitted his motions exhibits A, B and C and issued receipts B to B-34 for amounts
Tan Tek Sy"; on January 26, 1951 it was sent by certified mail notification of the decision in said case collected from the defendants, the respondent could have charged his fees, and demanded directly
(Exhibit G), confirming the decision of the Court of First Instance; On March 13, 1951, he filed a motion from his client, and claimed them in accordance with the article 33 Rule 127.
in said court - already returned the file - requesting the issuance of an execution order, which motion is
signed as follows: jgc: chanrobles.com.ph The appellant says that if he appeared on March 2, 1950 in case No. 7679 of the Court of First
Instance of Manila, Juan de la Torre against Philippine Trust Co., it was at the request of his brother-in-
"TAN TEK SI law Juan de la Torre and also the I do not charge fees for his appearance because I knew he was
suspended in the exercise of the profession. Although this appearance was not taken into account, the
" By (Sgd.) FELIX P. DAVID, respondent can not be saved by having provided the various professional services already reported.

"c / o Atty, Felix P. David, To practice the profession of a lawyer is to practice the acts of that profession. The preparation and
presentation of motions requesting the execution of the sentence, the demolition of the houses of the
" Corner Dagupan and Azcarraga St., defendants, asking the court to order the Sheriff to deliver the amounts collected, are acts that are part
of the exercise of the legal profession; to present a plea and memorandum before the Court of Appeal
is to practice the profession of lawyer, because an agent can not do it; Collecting rents from the 109
defendants, issuing 35 receipts and signing them as the plaintiff's lawyer, is practicing the profession.

The fact that he had not put his motion for an execution order in Malayan Saw Mill, Inc. against
Tolentino, who acted as a lawyer but as an agent and employee of the Philippines Sawmill and
Construction, does not alter the nature of his services that are certainly professional lawyer
services; but, concealing that he acted as a lawyer for Tan Tek Sy and pretending that he was only an
agent, his situation is aggravated: it is more guilty that, covered with a mask, he shoots against his
enemy than the one who does it bare-faced and in sight from the public; hence the criminal law
imposes more severe punishment in the first case.

The evidence in the case file shows that the defendant Felix P. David exercised the profession of a
lawyer by intentionally disregarding the decision of this Court of September 30, 1949, Administrative
Case No. 35.

Therefore, he is disqualified from practicing as a lawyer In the Philippines, the certificate issued in their
favor to exercise the profession is declared canceled and ordered to return it to the Clerk of this Court.

Bengzon, Padilla, Tuason, Montemayor, Reyes, Jugo, Angelo Bautista and Labrador, MM., Are
satisfied.
Republic of the Philippines 954 is one Ramon E. Galang, a perennial bar candidate, who flunked in the 1969, 1966, 1964, 1963,
SUPREME COURT and 1962 bar examinations with a grade of 67.55%, 68.65%, 72.75%, 68.2%, 56.45% and
Manila 57.3%, respectively. He passed in the 1971 bar examinations with a grade of 74.15%, which was
considered as 75% by virtue of a Court of 74.15%, which was considered as 75% as the passing mark
for the 1971 bar examinations.
EN BANC

Upon the direction of the Court, the 1971 Bar Examination Chairman requested Bar Confidant Victorio
D. Lanuevo and the five (5) bar examiners concerned to submit their sworn statements on the matter,
with which request they complied.
A.M. No. 1162 August 29, 1975
In his sworn statement dated April 12, 1972, said Bar Confidant admitted having brought the five
IN RE: VICTORIO D. LANUEVO, former Bar Confidant and Deputy Clerk of Court, respondent. examination notebooks of Ramon E. Galang, alias Ramon E. Galang, back to the respective
examiners for re-evaluation and/or re-checking, stating the circumstances under which the same was
done and his reasons for doing the same.
A.C. No. 1163 August 29, 1975

Each of the five (5) examiners in his individual sworn statement admitted having re-evaluated and/or
IN RE: RAMON E. GALANG, alias ROMAN E. GALANG, 1971 Bar Examinee, respondent. re-checked the notebook involved pertaining to his subject upon the representation to him by Bar
Confidant Lanuevo that he has the authority to do the same and that the examinee concerned failed
only in his particular subject and/or was on the borderline of passing.
A.M. No. 1164 August 29, 1975

Finding a prima facie case against the respondents warranting a formal investigation, the Court
IN RE: HON. BERNARDO PARDO, HON. RAMON PAMATIAN, ATTY. MANUEL TOMACRUZ,
required, in a resolution dated March 5, 1973, Bar Confidant Victorio Lanuevo "to show cause within
ATTY. FIDEL MANALO and ATTY. GUILLERMO PABLO, JR., Members, 1971 Bar Examining
ten (10) days from notice why his name should not be stricken from the Roll of Attorneys" (Adm. Case
Committee, respondent.
No. 1162, p. 34, rec.). Considering that the re-evaluation of the examination papers of Ramon E.
Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, was unauthorized, and therefore he did not obtain a passing average
in the 1971 bar examinations, the Court likewise resolved on March 5, 1971 to requires him "to show
cause within ten (10) days from notice why his name should not be stricken from the Roll of
Attorneys" (Adm. Case No. 1163, p. 99, rec.). The five examiners concerned were also required by the
MAKASIAR, J.: Court "to show cause within ten (10) days from notice why no disciplinary action should be taken
against them" (Adm. Case No. 1164, p. 31, rec.).
Administrative proceedings against Victorio D. Lanuevo — for disbarment; Ramon E. Galang, alias
Roman E. Galang — for disbarment; Hon. Bernardo Pardo, Hon. Ramon Pamatian, Atty. Manuel C. Respondent Tomacruz filed his answer on March 12, 1973 (Adm. Case No. 1164, p. 70, rec.). while
Tomacruz; Atty. Manuel G. Montecillo, Atty. Fidel Manalo and Atty. Guillermo Pablo, Jr. — for respondents Pardo, Pamatian, Montecillo, Manalo and Lanuevo filed theirs on March 19, 1973 (Adm.
disciplinary action — for their acts and omissions during the 1971 Bar Examinations. Case No. 1162, pp. 60-63, 32-35, 40-41, 36-39 and 35-38, rec.). At the hearing on August 27, 1973,
respondent Lanuevo filed another sworn statement in addition to, and in amplication of, his answer
In his request dated March 29, 1972 contained in a confidential letter to the Court for re-correction and filed on March 19, 1973 (Adm. Case No. 1162, pp. 45-47, rec.). Respondent Galang filed his unverified
re-evaluation of his answer to the 1971 Bar Examinations question, Oscar Landicho — who flunked in answer on March 16, 1973 (Adm. Case No. 1163, pp. 100-104, rec.). He was required by the Court to
the 1971, 1968 and 1967 Bar Examinations with a grade of 70.5%, 65.35% and 67.55%, respectively verify the same and complaince came on May 18, 1973 (Adm. Case No. 1163, pp. 106-110,) rec.).
— invited the attention of the Court to "The starling fact that the grade in one examination (Civil Law) of
at least one bar candidate was raised for one reason or another, before the bar results were released In the course of the investigation, it was found that it was not respondent Bernardo Pardo who re-
this year" (Confidential Letter, p. 2. Vol. I, rec.). This was confirmed, according to him, by the Civil Law evaluated and/or re-checked examination booklet with Office Code No. 954 in Political Law and Public
Examiner himself (Hon. Ramon C. Pamatian) as well as by Bar Confidant Victorio D. Lanuevo. He International Law of examinee Ramon Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, but Guillermo Pablo, Jr.,
further therein stated "that there are strong reasons to believe that the grades in other examination examiner in Legal Ethics and Practical Exercise, who was asked to help in the correction of a number
notebooks in other subjects also underwent alternations — to raise the grades — prior to the release of of examination notebooks in Political Law and Public International Law to meet the deadline for
the results. Note that this was without any formal motion or request from the proper parties, i.e., the bar submission (pp. 17-24, Vol. V, rec.). Because of this development, Atty. Guillermo Pablo, Jr. was
candidates concerned. If the examiners concerned reconsidered their grades without formal motion, likewise included as respondent in Administrative Case No. 1164. Hon. Bernardo Pardo remainded as
there is no reason why they may not do so now when proper request answer motion therefor is made. a respondent for it was also discovered that another paper in Political Law and Public International Law
It would be contrary to due process postulates. Might not one say that some candidates got unfair and also underwent re-evaluation and/or re-checking. This notebook with Office Code No. 1662 turned out
unjust treatment, for their grades were not asked to be reconsidered 'unofficially'? Why the to be owned by another successful candidate by the name of Ernesto Quitaleg. Further investigation
discrimination? Does this not afford sufficient reason for the Court en banc to go into these matters by resulted in the discovery of another re-evaluation and/or re-checking of a notebook in the subject of
its conceded power to ultimately decide the matter of admission to the bar?" (p. 2, Confidential Letter, Mercantile Law resulting in the change of the grade from 4% to 50% This notebook bearing Office
Vol. I, rec.). Code No. 110 is owned by another successful candidate by the name of Alfredo Ty dela Cruz. Quitaleg
and Ty dela Cruz and the latter's father were summoned to testify in the investigation.
Acting on the aforesaid confidential letter, the Court checked the records of the 1971 Bar Examinations
and found that the grades in five subjects — Political Law and Public International Law, Civil Law, An investigation conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation upon request of the Chairman of
Mercantile Law, Criminal Law and Remedial Law — of a successful bar candidate with office code No. the 1971 Bar Examination Committee as Investigation Officer, showed that one Romy Galang y
954 underwent some changes which, however, were duly initialed and authenticated by the respective Esguerra, alias Ramon E. Galang, a student in the School of Law of Manuel L. Quezon University,
examiner concerned. Further check of the records revealed that the bar candidate with office code No. was, on September 8, 1959, charged with the crime of slight physical injuries in the Municipal Court of
Manila committed on Eufrosino F. de Vera, another student of the same university. Confronted with this His answer dated March 19, 1973 substantially reiterated his allegations in his April 11, 1972 affidavit
information at the hearing of August 13, 1973 (Vol. V, pp. 20-21, 32, rec.), respondent Galang declared with following additional statements:
that he does not remember having been charged with the crime of slight physical injuries in that case.
(Vol. VI, pp. 45-60, rec.).
xxx xxx xxx

Respondent Galang, in all his application to take the bar examinations, did not make mention of this
fact which he is required under the rules to do. 3. ... However the grades in Nos. 1, 2, 6, 9 and 10, were not reconsidered as it is
no longer to make the reconsideration of these answers because of the same
evaluation and standard; hence, Nos. 1, 2 and 10 remainded at 5% and Nos. 6
The joint investigation of all the cases commenced on July 17, 1973 and was terminated on October 2, and 9 at 10%;
1973. Thereafter, parties-respondents were required to submit their memoranda. Respondents
Lanuevo, Galang and Pardo submitted their respective memorandum on November 14, 1973.
4. That at the time I made the reconsideration of examination booklet No. 951 I
did not know the identity of its owner until I received this resolution of the
Before the joint hearing commenced, Oscar Landicho took up permanent residence in Australia, where Honorable Supreme Court nor the identities of the examiners in other subjects;
he is believed to be gainfully employed. Hence, he was not summoned to testify.
5. That the above re-evaluation was made in good faith and under the belief that
At the joint investigation, all respondents, except respondent Pablo, who offered as evidence only his I am authorized to do so in view of the misrepresentation of said Atty. Lanuevo,
oral testimony, submitted as their direct evidence only his oral testimony, submitted as their direct based on the following circumstances:
evidence the affidavits and answers earlier submitted by them to the Court. The same became the
basis for their cross-examination.
a) Since I started correcting the papers on or about
October 16, 1971, relationship between Atty. Lanuevo and
In their individual sworn statements and answer, which they offered as their direct testimony in the myself had developed to the point that with respect to the
investigation conducted by the Court, the respondent-examiners recounted the circumstances under correction of the examination booklets of bar candidates I
which they re-evaluated and/or re-checked the examination notebooks in question. have always followed him and considered his instructions
as reflecting the rules and policy of the Honorable Supreme
Court with respect to the same; that I have no alternative
In His affidavit dated April 11, 1972, respondent Judge (later Associate Justice of the Court of Appeals) but to take his words;
Ramon C. Pamatian, examiner in Civil Law, affirmed:

b) That considering this relationship and considering his


2. That one evening sometime in December last year, while I was correcting the misrepresentation to me as reflecting the real and policy of
examination notebooks, Atty. Lanuevo, Bar Confidant, explained to me that it is the Honorable Supreme Court, I did not bother any more to
the practice and the policy in bar examinations that he (Atty. Lanuevo) make a get the consent and permission of the Chairman of the Bar
review of the grades obtained in all subjects and if he finds that candidate Committee. Besides, at that time, I was isolating myself
obtained an extraordinary high grade in one subject and a rather low one in from all members of the Supreme Court and specially the
another, he will bring back the latter to the examiner concerned for re-evaluation chairman of the Bar Committee for fear that I might be
and change of grade; identified as a bar examiner;

3. That sometime in the latter part of January of this year, he brought back to me xxx xxx xxx
an examination booklet in Civil Law for re-evaluation, because according to him
the owner of the paper is on the borderline and if I could reconsider his grade to
75% the candidate concerned will get passing mark; e) That no consideration whatsoever has been received by me in return for such
recorrection, and as proof of it, I declined to consider and evaluate one booklet in
Remedial Law aforesaid because I was not the one who made the original
4. That taking his word for it and under the belief that it was really the practice correction of the same (Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 32-35, rec.; emphasis
and policy of the Supreme Court to do so in the further belief that I was just supplied).
manifesting cooperation in doing so, I re-evaluated the paper and reconsidered
the grade to 75%;
Then Assistant Solicitor General, now CFI Judge, Bernardo Pardo, examiner in Political Law and
Public International Law, confirmed in his affidavit of April 8, 1972 that:
5. That only one notebook in Civil Law was brought back to me for such re-
evaluation and upon verifying my files I found that the notebook is numbered '95;
On a day or two after the Bar Confidant went to my residence to obtain from me
the last bag of two hundred notebooks (bearing examiner's code numbers 1200
6. That the original grade was 64% and my re-evaluation of the answers were to 1400) which according to my record was on February 5, 1972, he came to my
based on the same standard used in the correction and evaluation of all others; residence at about 7:30 p.m. riding in a Vokswagen panel of the Supreme Court,
thus, Nos. 3 and 4 with original grades of 7% each was reconsidered to 10%; No. with at least two companions. The bar confidant had with him an examinee's
5 with 4% to 5%; No. 7 with 3% to 5%; and No. 8 with 8% to 10% (emphasis notebook bearing code number 661, and, after the usual amenties, he requested
supplied). me if it was possible for me to review and re-examine the said notebook because
it appears that the examinee obtained a grade of 57, whereas, according to the
Bar Confidant, the said examinee had obtained higher grades in other subjects, xxx xxx xxx
the highest of which was 84, if I recall correctly, in remedial law.
7. Indeed, the notebook code numbered 661 was still in the same condition as
I asked the Bar Confidant if I was allowed to receive or re-examinee the when I submitted the same. In agreeing to review the said notebook code
notebook as I had submitted the same beforehand, and he told me that I was numbered 661, my aim was to see if I committed an error in the correction, not to
authorized to do so because the same was still within my control and authority as make the examinee pass the subject. I considered it entirely humanly possible to
long as the particular examinee's name had not been identified or that the code have erred, because I corrected that particular notebook on December 31,
number decode and the examinee's name was revealed. The Bar Confidant told 1971, considering especially the representation of the Bar Confidant that the said
me that the name of the examinee in the case present bearing code number 661 examinee had obtained higher grades in other subjects, the highest of which was
had not been identified or revealed; and that it might have been possible that I 84% in remedial law, if I recall correctly. Of course, it did not strike me as unusual
had given a particularly low grade to said examinee. that the Bar Confidant knew the grades of the examinee in the position to know
and that there was nothing irregular in that:
Accepting at face value the truth of the Bar Confidant's representations to me,
and as it was humanly possible that I might have erred in the grading of the said 8. In political and international law, the original grade obtained by the examinee
notebook, I re-examined the same, carefully read the answer, and graded it in with notebook code numbered 661 was 57%. After review, it was increased by 9
accordance with the same standards I had used throughout the grading of the points, resulting in a final grade of 66%. Still, the examinee did not pass the
entire notebooks, with the result that the examinee deserved an increased grade subject, and, as heretofore stated, my aim was not to make the examinee pass,
of 66. After again clearing with the Bar Confidant my authority to correct the notwithstanding the representation that he had passed the other subjects. ...
grades, and as he had assured me that the code number of the examinee in
question had not been decoded and his name known, ... I therefore corrected the
total grade in the notebook and the grade card attached thereto, and properly 9. I quite recall that during the first meeting of the Bar Examiners' Committee
initia(l)ed the same. I also corrected the itemized grades (from item No. 1 to item consensus was that where an examinee failed in only one subject and passed
No. 10) on the two sets of grading sheets, my personal copy thereof, and the Bar the rest, the examiner in said subject would review the notebook. Nobody
Confidant brought with him the other copy thereof, and the Bar Confidant brought objected to it as irregular. At the time of the Committee's first meeting, we still did
with him the other copy the grading sheet" (Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 58-59; rec.; not know the names of the candidates.
emphasis supplied)
10. In fine, I was a victim of deception, not a party to it. It had absolutely no
In his answer dated March 17, 1973 which he denominated as "Explanation", respondent Bernardo P. knowledge of the motives of the Bar Confidant or his malfeasance in office, and
Pardo adopted and replaced therein by reference the facts stated in his earlier sworn statement and in did not know the examinee concerned nor had I any kind of contract with him
additional alleged that: before or rather the review and even up to the present (Adm. Case No. 1164, pp.
60-63; rec.; emphasis supplied).

xxx xxx xxx


Atty. Manuel Tomacruz, examiner in Criminal Law, affirmed in his affidavit dated April 12, 1972:

3. At the time I reviewed the examinee's notebook in political and international


law, code numbered 661, I did know the name of the examinee. In fact, I came to 1. xxx xxx xxx
know his name only upon receipt of the resolution of March 5, 1973; now
knowing his name, I wish to state that I do not know him personally, and that I 2. That about weekly, the Bar Confidant would deliver and collect examination
have never met him even up to the present; books to my residence at 951 Luna Mencias, Mandaluyong, Rizal.

4. At that time, I acted under the impression that I was authorized to make such 3. That towards the end when I had already completed correction of the books in
review, and had repeatedly asked the Bar Confidant whether I was authorized to Criminal Law and was helping in the correction of some of the papers in another
make such revision and was so assured of my authority as the name of the subject, the Bar Confidant brought back to me one (1) paper in Criminal Law
examinee had not yet been decoded or his identity revealed. The Bar Confidant's saying that that particular examinee had missed the passing grade by only a
assurance was apparently regular and so appeared to be in the regular course of fraction of a percent and that if his paper in Criminal Law would be raised a few
express prohibition in the rules and guidelines given to me as an examiner, and points to 75%then he would make the general passing average.
the Bar Confidant was my official liaison with the Chairman, as, unless called, I
refrained as much as possible from frequent personal contact with the Chairman
lest I be identified as an examiner. ...; 4. That seeing the jurisdiction, I raised the grade to 75%, that is, giving a raise of,
if I remember correctly, 2 or 3 points, initialled the revised mark and revised also
the mark and revised also the mark in the general list.
5. At the time the Bar Confidant came to see me at about 7:30 o'clock in the
evening at my residence, I felt it inappropriate to verify his authority with the
Chairman. It did not appear to me that his representations were unauthorized or 5. That I do not recall the number of the book of the examinee concerned" (Adm.
suspicious. Indeed, the Bar Confidant was riding in the official vehicle of the Case No. 1164, p. 69, rec.; emphasis supplied).
Supreme Court, a Volkswagen panel, accompanied by two companions, which
was usual, and thus looked like a regular visit to me of the Bar Confidant, as it
In his answer dated March 12, 1973, respondent Tomacruz stated that "I accepted the word of the Bar
was about the same hour that he used to see me:
Confidant in good faith and without the slightest inkling as to the identity of the examinee in question
who up to now remains a total stranger and without expectation of nor did I derive any personal xxx xxx xxx
benefit" (Adm. Case No. 1164, p. 70, rec.; emphasis supplied).
c) In revising the grade of the particular examinee
Atty. Fidel Manalo, examiner in Remedial Law, stated in his affidavit dated April 14, 1972, that: concerned, herein respondent carefully evaluated each and
every answer written in the notebook. Testing the answers
by the criteria laid down by the Court, and giving the said
xxx xxx xxx examinee the benefit of doubt in view of Mr. Lanuevo's
representation that it was only in that particular subject that
2. Sometime about the late part of January or early part of February 1972, the said examine failed, herein respondent became
Attorney Lanuevo, Bar Confidant of the Supreme Court, saw me in my house at convinced that the said examinee deserved a higher grade
No. 1854 Asuncion Street, Makati, Rizal. He produced to me an examinee's than that previously given to him, but that he did not
notebook in Remedial Law which I had previously graded and submitted to him. deserve, in herein respondent's honest appraisal, to be
He informed me that he and others (he used the words "we") had reviewed the given the passing grade of 75%. It should also be
said notebook. He requested me to review the said notebook and possibly mentioned that, in reappraising the answers, herein
reconsider the grade that I had previously given. He explained that the examine respondent downgraded a previous rating of an answer
concerned had done well in other subjects, but that because of the comparatively written by the examinee, from 9.25% to 9% (Adm. Case
low grade that I had given him in Remedial Law his general average was short of No. 1164, pp. 36-39, rec.; emphasis supplied).
passing. Mr. Lanuevo remarked that he thought that if the paper were reviewed I
might find the examinee deserving of being admitted to the Bar. As far as I can Atty. Manuel Montecillo, examiner in Mercantile Law, affirmed in his affidavit dated April 17, 1972:
recall, Mr. Lanuevo particularly called my attention to the fact in his answers the
examinee expressed himself clearly and in good enough English. Mr. Lanuevo
however informed me that whether I would reconsider the grades I had xxx xxx xxx
previously given and submitted was entirely within my discretion.
That during one of the deliberations of the Bar Examiners' Committee after the
3. Believing fully that it was within Mr. Lanuevo's authority as Bar Confidant to Bar Examinations were held, I was informed that one Bar examinee passed all
address such a request to me and that the said request was in order, I, in the other subjects except Mercantile Law;
presence of Mr. Lanuevo, proceeded tore-read and re-evaluate each and every
item of the paper in question. I recall that in my re-evaluation of the answers, I
increased the grades in some items, made deductions in other items, and That I informed the Bar Examiners' Committee that I would be willing to re-
maintained the same grades in other items. However, I recall that after Mr. evaluate the paper of this particular Bar candidate;.
Lanuevo and I had totalled the new grades that I had given after re-evaluation,
the total grade increased by a few points, but still short of the passing mark of That the next day, the Bar Confidant handed to me a Bar candidate's notebook
75% in my subject. (No. 1613) showing a grade of 61%;

xxx xxx xxx (Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 74-75, rec.; emphasis supplied). That I reviewed the whole paper and after re-evaluating the answers of this
particular Bar candidate I decided to increase his final grade to 71%;
In his answer (response) dated March 18, 1973, respondent Manalo reiterated the contents of his
sworn statement, adding the following: That consequently, I amended my report and duly initialed the changes in the
grade sheet (Adm. Case No. 1164, p. 72, rec.; emphasis supplied).
xxx xxx xxx
In his answer dated March 19, 1973, respondent Montecillo restated the contents of his sworn
5. In agreeing to re-evaluate the notebook, with resulted in increasing the total statement of April 17, 1972, and
grade of the examinee-concerned in Remedial Law from 63.75% to 74.5%,
herein respondent acted in good faith. It may well be that he could be faulted for xxx xxx xxx
not having verified from the Chairman of the Committee of Bar Examiners the
legitimacy of the request made by Mr. Lanuevo. Herein respondent, however,
pleads in attenuation of such omission, that — 2. Supplementary to the foregoing sworn statement, I hereby state that I re-
evaluated the examination notebook of Bar Candidate No. 1613 in Mercantile
Law in absolute good faith and in direct compliance with the agreement made
a) Having been appointed an Examiner for the first time, he during one of the deliberations of the Bar Examiners Committee that where a
was not aware, not having been apprised otherwise, that it candidate fails in only one subject, the Examiner concerned should make a re-
was not within the authority of the Bar Confidant of the evaluation of the answers of the candidate concerned, which I did.
Supreme Court to request or suggest that the grade of a
particular examination notebook be revised or
reconsidered. He had every right to presume, owing to the 3. Finally, I hereby state that I did not know at the time I made the
highly fiduciary nature of the position of the Bar Confidant, aforementioned re-evaluation that notebook No. 1613 in Mercantile Law
that the request was legitimate. pertained to bar examine Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, and that I
have never met up to this time this particular bar examinee (Adm. Case No.
1164, pp. 40-41, rec.; emphasis supplied).
In his sworn statement dated April 12, 1972, Bar Confidant Lanuevo stated: xxx xxx xxx (Adm. Case No. 1162, p. 35, rec.; emphasis supplied).

xxx xxx xxx On August 27, 1973, during the course of the investigation, respondent Lanuevo filed another sworn
statement in addition to, and in amplification of, his answer, stating:
As I was going over those notebooks, checking the entries in the grading sheets
and the posting on the record of ratings, I was impressed of the writing and the xxx xxx xxx
answers on the first notebook. This led me to scrutinize all the set of notebooks.
Believing that those five merited re-evalation on the basis of the memorandum
circularized to the examiners shortly earlier to the effect that 1. That I vehemently deny having deceived the examiners concerned into
believing that the examinee involved failed only in their respective subjects, the
fact of the matter being that the notebooks in question were submitted to the
... in the correction of the papers, substantial weight should respective examiners for re-evaluation believing in all good faith that they so
then be given to clarify of language and soundness of merited on the basis of the Confidential Memorandum (identified and marked as
reasoning' (par. 4), Exh. 1-Lanuevo, particularly that portion marked as Exh. 1-a-Lanuevo)which was
circulated to all the examiners earlier, leaving to them entirely the matter of
whether or not re-evaluation was in order,
I took it upon myself to bring them back to the respective examiners for re-
evaluation and/or re-checking.
2. That the following coincidence prompted me to pry into the notebooks in
question:
It is our experience in the Bar Division that immediately after the release of the
results of the examinations, we are usually swarmed with requests of the
examinees that they be shown their notebooks. Many of them would copy their Sometime during the latter part of January and the early
answers and have them checked by their professors. Eventually some of them part of February, 1972, on my way back to the office (Bar
would file motions or requests for re-correction and/or re-evaluation. Right now, Division) after lunch, I though of buying a sweepstake
we have some 19 of such motions or requests which we are reading for ticket. I have always made it a point that the moment I think
submission to the Honorable Court. of so buying, I pick a number from any object and the first
number that comes into my sight becomes the basis of the
ticket that I buy. At that moment, the first number that I saw
Often we feel that a few of them are meritorious, but just the same they have to was "954" boldly printed on an electrical contribance
be denied because the result of the examinations when released is final and (evidently belonging to the MERALCO) attached to a post
irrevocable. standing along the right sidewalk of P. Faura street towards
the Supreme Court building from San Marcelino street and
It was to at least minimize the occurrence of such instances that motivated me to almost adjacent to the south-eastern corner of the fence of
bring those notebooks back to the respective examiners for re-evaluation" (Adm. the Araullo High School(photograph of the number '954',
Case No. 1162, p. 24, rec.; emphasis supplied). the contrivance on which it is printed and a portion of the
post to which it is attached is identified and marked as
Exhibit 4-Lanuevo and the number "954" as Exh. 4-a-
In his answer dated March 19, 1973, respondent Lanuevo avers: Lanuevo).

That he submitted the notebooks in question to the examiners concerned in his With this number (954) in mind, I proceeded to Plaza Sta.
hotest belief that the same merited re-evaluation; that in so doing, it was not his Cruz to look for a ticket that would contain such number.
intention to forsake or betray the trust reposed in him as bar confidant but on the Eventually, I found a ticket, which I then bought, whose last
contrary to do justice to the examinee concerned; that neither did he act in a three digits corresponded to "954". This number became
presumptuous manner, because the matter of whether or not re-evaluation was doubly impressive to me because the sum of all the six
inorder was left alone to the examiners' decision; and that, to his knowledge, he digits of the ticket number was "27", a number that is so
does not remember having made the alleged misrepresentation but that he significant to me that everything I do I try somewhat
remembers having brought to the attention of the Committee during the meeting instinctively to link or connect it with said number whenever
a matter concerning another examinee who obtained a passing general average possible. Thus even in assigning code numbers on the
but with a grade below 50% in Mercantile Law. As the Committee agreed to Master List of examinees from 1968 when I first took
remove the disqualification by way of raising the grade in said subject, charge of the examinations as Bar Confidant up to 1971, I
respondent brought the notebook in question to the Examiner concerned who either started with the number "27" (or "227") or end with
thereby raised the grade thus enabling the said examinee to pass. If he said number. (1968 Master List is identified and marked as
remembers right, the examinee concerned is one surnamed "de la Cruz" or "Ty- Exh. 5-Lanuevo and the figure "27" at the beginning of the
de la Cruz". list, as Exh. 5-a Lanuevo; 1969 Master List as Exh. 6-
Lanuevo and the figure "227" at the beginning of the list, as
Exh. 6-a-Lanuevo; 1970 Master List as Exh. 7-Lanuevo
Your Honors, respondent never entertained a notion that his act would stir such
and the figure "227" at the beginning of the list as Exh. 7-a-
serious charges as would tend to undermine his integrity because he did it in all
Lanuevo; and the 1971 Master List as Exh. 8-Lanuevo and
good faith.
the figure "227" at the end of the list as Exh. 8-a-Lanuevo).
The significance to me of this number (27) was born out of notebook mentioned in the sworn statement of Asst.
these incidents in my life, to wit: (a) On November 27, 1941 Solicitor General Bernardo Pardo(Exh. ------- Pardo).
while with the Philippine Army stationed at Camp
Manacnac, Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija, I was stricken with
pneumonia and was hospitalized at the Nueva Ecija 4. That in each of the two cases mentioned in the next preceding paragraph, only
Provincial Hospital as a result. As will be recalled, the last one (1) subject or notebook was reviewed or re-evaluated, that is, only
Pacific War broke out on December 8, 1941. While I was Mercantile Law in the former; and only Political and International Law in the
still confined at the hospital, our camp was bombed and latter, under the facts and circumstances I made known to the Committee and
strafed by Japanese planes on December 13, 1941 pursuant to which the Committee authorized the referral of the notebooks
resulting in many casualties. From then on, I regarded involved to the examiners concerned;
November 27, 1941 as the beginning of a new life for me
having been saved from the possibility of being among the 5. That at that juncture, the examiner in Taxation even volunteered to review or
casualties;(b) On February 27, 1946, I was able to get out re-check some 19, or so, notebooks in his subject but that I told the Committee
of the army byway of honorable discharge; and (c) on that there was very little time left and that the increase in grade after re-
February 27, 1947, I got married and since then we begot evaluation, unless very highly substantial, may not alter the outcome since the
children the youngest of whom was born on February 27, subject carries the weight of only 10% (Adm. Case No. 1162, pp. 45-47, rec.).
1957.

The foregoing last-minute embellishment only serves to accentuate the fact that Lanuevo's story is
Returning to the office that same afternoon after buying the devoid of truth. In his sworn statement of April 12, 1972, he was "led to scrutinize all the set of
ticket, I resumed my work which at the time was on the notebooks" of respondent Galang, because he "was impressed of the writing and the answers on the
checking of the notebooks. While thus checking, I came first notebook "as he "was going over those notebooks, checking the entries in the grading sheets and
upon the notebooks bearing the office code number "954". the posting on the record of ratings." In his affidavit of August 27, 1973, he stated that the number 954
As the number was still fresh in my mind, it aroused my on a Meralco post provoked him "to pry into the contents of the notebooks" of respondent Galang
curiosity prompting me to pry into the contents of the "bearing office code number '954."
notebooks. Impressed by the clarity of the writing and
language and the apparent soundness of the answers and,
thereby, believing in all good faith on the basis of the Respondent Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, asserted, among others;
aforementioned Confidential Memorandum (Exh. 1-
Lanuevo and Exh. 1-a-Lanuevo) that they merited re-
1. That herein respondent is not acquainted with former BarConfidant Victorio
evaluation, I set them aside and later on took them back to
Lanuevo and never met him before except once when, as required by the latter
the respective examiners for possible review recalling to
respondent submitted certain papers necessary for taking the bar examinations.
them the said Confidential Memorandum but leaving
absolutely the matter to their discretion and judgment.
xxx xxx xxx
3. That the alleged misrepresentation or deception could have reference to either
of the two cases which I brought to the attention of the committee during the 4. That it has been the consistent policy of the Supreme Court not to reconsider
meeting and which the Committee agreed to refer back to the respective "failure" cases; after the official release thereof; why should it now reconsider a
examines, namely: "passing" case, especially in a situation where the respondent and the bar
confidant do not know each other and, indeed, met only once in the ordinary
course of official business?
(a) That of an examinee who obtained a passing general
average but with a grade below 50% (47%) in Mercantile
Law(the notebooks of this examinee bear the Office Code It is not inevitable, then, to conclude that the entire situation clearly manifests a
No. 110, identified and marked as Exh. 9-Lanuevo and the reasonable doubt to which respondent is richly entitled?
notebook in Mercantile Law bearing the Examiner's Code
No. 951 with the original grade of 4% increased to 50%
after re-evaluation as Exh. 9-a-Lanuevo); and 5. That respondent, before reading a copy of this Honorable Court's resolution
dated March 5, 1973, had no knowledge whatsoever of former Bar Confidant
Victorio Lanuevo's actuations which are stated in particular in the resolution. In
(b) That of an examinee who obtained a borderline general fact, the respondent never knew this man intimately nor, had the herein
average of 73.15% with a grade below 60% (57%) in one respondent utilized anyone to contact the Bar Confidant Lanuevo in his behalf.
subject which, at the time, I could not pinpoint having
inadvertently left in the office the data thereon. It turned out
that the subject was Political and International Law under But, assuming as true, the said actuations of Bar Confidant Lanuevo as stated in
Asst. Solicitor General Bernardo Pardo (The notebooks of the Resolution, which are evidently purported to show as having redounded to
this examinee bear the Office Code No. 1622 identified and the benefit of herein respondent, these questions arise: First, was the re-
marked as Exh. 10-Lanuevo and the notebook in Political evaluation of Respondent's examination papers by the Bar Examination
and International Law bearing the Examiner's Code No. Committee done only or especially for him and not done generally as regards the
661 with the original grade of 57% increased to 66% after paper of the other bar candidates who are supposed to have failed? If the re-
re-evaluation, as Exh. 10-a-Lanuevo). This notebook in evaluation of Respondent's grades was done among those of others, then it must
Political and International Law is precisely the same have been done as a matter of policy of the Committee to increase the
percentage of passing in that year's examination and, therefore, the insinuation
that only respondent's papers were re-evaluated upon the influence of Bar Thereafter, about the latter part of January, 1972 or early part of February, 1972, respondent Lanuevo
Confidant Lanuevo would be unjustifiable, if not far fetched. Secondly, is the fact went to the residence of respondent-examiner Fidel Manalo at 1854 Asuncion Street, Makati, Rizal,
that BarConfidant Lanuevo's actuations resulted in herein Respondent's benefit with an examinee's notebook in Remedial Law, which respondent Manalo and previously corrected
an evidence per se of Respondent's having caused actuations of Bar confidant and graded. Respondent Lanuevo then requested respondent Manalo to review the said notebook and
Lanuevo to be done in former's behalf? To assume this could be disastrous in possibly to reconsider the grade given, explaining and representing that "they" has reviewed the said
effect because that would be presuming all the members of the Bar Examination notebook and that the examinee concerned had done well in other subjects, but that because of the
Committee as devoid of integrity, unfit for the bar themselves and the result of comparatively low grade given said examinee by respondent Manalo in Remedial Law, the general
their work that year, as also unworthy of anything. All of these inferences are average of said examinee was short of passing. Respondent Lanuevo likewise made the remark and
deductible from the narration of facts in the resolution, and which only goes to observation that he thought that if the notebook were reviewed, respondent Manalo might yet find the
show said narration of facts an unworthy of credence, or consideration. examinee deserving of being admitted to the Bar. Respondent Lanuevo also particularly called the
attention of respondent Manalo to the fact that in his answers, the examinee expressed himself clearly
and in good English. Furthermore, respondent Lanuevo called the attention of respondent Manalo to
xxx xxx xxx Paragraph 4 of the Confidential Memorandum that read as follows:

7. This Honorable Tribunal's Resolution of March 5, 1973 would make this 4. Examination questions should be more a test of logic, knowledge of legal
Respondent Account or answer for the actuations of Bar Confidant Lanuevo as fundamentals, and ability to analyze and solve legal problems rather than a test
well as for the actuations of the Bar Examiners implying the existence of some of memory; in the correction of papers, substantial weight should be given to
conspiracy between them and the Respondent. The evident imputation is denied clarify of language and soundness of reasoning.
and it is contended that the Bar Examiners were in the performance of their
duties and that they should be regarded as such in the consideration of this case.
Respondent Manalo was, however, informed by respondent Lanuevo that the matter of reconsideration
was entirely within his (Manalo's) discretion. Respondent Manalo, believing that respondent Lanuevo,
xxx xxx xxx (Adm. Case No. 1163, pp. 100-104, rec.). as Bar Confidant, had the authority to make such request and further believing that such request was
in order, proceeded to re-evaluate the examinee's answers in the presence of Lanuevo, resulting in an
I increase of the examinee's grade in that particular subject, Remedial Law, from 63.25% to 74.5%.
Respondent Manalo authenticated with his signature the changes made by him in the notebook and in
the grading sheet. The said notebook examiner's code number is 136, instead of 310 as earlier
The evidence thus disclosed clearly demonstrates how respondent Lanuevo systematically and mentioned by him in his affidavit, and belonged to Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang (Exhs. 1
cleverly initiated and prepared the stage leading to the re-evalation and/or recorrection of the answers & 2- Manalo, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 36-39, 74-75; Vol. V, pp. 50-53, rec.).
of respondent Galang by deceiving separately and individually the respondents-examiners to make the
desired revision without prior authority from the Supreme Court after the corrected notebooks had been
submitted to the Court through the respondent Bar Confidant, who is simply the custodian thereof for But even after the re-evaluation by Atty. Manalo, Examinee Galang could not make the passing grade
and in behalf of the Court. due to his failing marks in five subjects.

It appears that one evening, sometime around the middle part of December, 1971, just before Likewise, in the latter part of January, 1972, on one occasion when respondent Lanuevo went to
Christmas day, respondent Lanuevo approached Civil Law examiner Pamatian while the latter was in deliver to respondent Guillermo Pablo, Jr. in the latter's house a new batch of examination papers in
the process of correcting examination booklets, and then and there made the representations that as Political Law and Public International Law to be corrected, respondent Lanuevo brought out a notebook
BarConfidant, he makes a review of the grades obtained in all subjects of the examinees and if he in Political Law bearing Examiner's Code Number 1752 (Exh. 5-Pardo, Adm. Case No. 1164, p. 66,
finds that a candidate obtains an extraordinarily high grade in one subject and a rather low one on rec.), informing respondent Pablo that particular examinee who owns the said notebook seems to have
another, he will bring back to the examiner concerned the notebook for re-evaluation and change of passed in all other subjects except in Political Law and Public International Law; and that if the said
grade(Exh. 2-Pamatian, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 55-56; Vol. V, pp. 3-4, rec.). notebook would be re-evaluated and the mark be increased to at least 75%, said examinee will pass
the bar examinations. After satisfying himself from respondent that this is possible — the respondent
Bar Confidant informing him that this is the practice of the Court to help out examinees who are failing
Sometime in the latter part of January, 1972, respondent Lanuevo brought back to respondent- in just one subject — respondent Pablo acceded to the request and thereby told the Bar Confidant to
examiner Pamatian an examination booklet in Civil Law for re-evaluation, representing that the just leave the said notebook. Respondent Pablo thereafter re-evaluated the answers, this time with
examinee who owned the particular notebook is on the borderline of passing and if his grade in said leniency. After the re-evaluation, the grade was increased to 78% from 68%, or an increase of 10%.
subject could be reconsidered to 75%, the said examine will get a passing average. Respondent- Respondent Pablo then made the corresponding corrections in the grading sheet and accordingly
examiner Pamatian took respondent Lanuevo's word and under the belief that was really the practice initialed the charges made. This notebook with Office Code Number 954 also belonged to Ramon E.
and policy of the Supreme Court and in his further belief that he was just manifesting cooperation in Galang, alias Roman E. Galang (Vol. V, pp. 43-46, rec.).
doing so, he re-evaluated the paper and reconsidered the examinee's grade in said subject to 75%
from 64%. The particular notebook belonged to an examinee with Examiner's Code Number 95 and
with Office Code Number 954. This examinee is Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang. After the re-evaluation by Atty. Pablo, Jr., examinee Galang's general average was still below the
Respondent Pamatian did not know the identity of the examinee at the time he re-evaluated the said passing grade, because of his failing marks in four subjects.
booklet (Exhs. 1-Pamatian, 2-Pamatian, and 3-Pamatian, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 32-33, 55-56, 57;
Vol. V, pp. 3-4, rec.). Towards the end of the correction of examination notebooks, respondent Lanuevo brought back to
respondent Tomacruz one examination booklet in Criminal Law, with the former informing the latter,
Before Justice Pamatian made the revision, Examinee Galang failed in seven subjects including Civil who was then helping in the correction of papers in Political Law and Public International Law, as he
Law. After such revision, examinee Galang still failed in six subjects and could not obtain the passing had already finished correcting the examination notebooks in his assigned subject — Criminal Law —
average of 75% for admission to the Bar. that the examinee who owns that particular notebook had missed the passing grade by only a fraction
of a percent and that if his grade in Criminal Law would be raised a few points to 75%, then the
examinee would make the passing grade. Accepting the words of respondent Lanuevo, and seeing the
justification and because he did not want to be the one causing the failure of the examinee, respondent II
Tomacruz raised the grade from 64% to 75% and thereafter, he initialed the revised mark and also
revised the mark in the general list and likewise initialed the same. The examinee's Examiner Code
Number is 746 while his Office Code Number is 954. This examinee is Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman Re: Administrative Case No. 1162, Victorio D. Lanuevo, respondent.
E. Galang (Exhs. 1, 2 & 3-Tomacruz, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 65, 66 and 71; Vol. V, pp. 24-25, 60-
61, rec.). A

Respondent Tomacruz does not recall having been shown any memo by respondent Lanuevo when UNAUTHORIZED RE-EVALUATION OF THE ANSWERS OF EXAMINE RAMON E. GALANG, alias
the latter approached him for this particular re-evaluation; but he remembers Lanuevo declaring to him ROMAN E. GALANG, IN ALL FIVE (5) MAJOR SUBJECTS.
that where a candidate had almost made the passing average but had failed in one subject, as a
matter of policy of the Court, leniency is applied in reviewing the examinee's notebook in the failing
subject. He recalls, however, that he was provided a copy of the Confidential Memorandum but this Respondent Victorio D. Lanuevo admitted having requested on his own initiative the five examiners
was long before the re-evaluation requested by respondent Lanuevo as the same was received by him concerned to re-evaluate the five notebooks of Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, that
before the examination period (Vol. V, p. 61, rec.). eventually resulted in the increase of Galang's average from 66.25% to the passing grade 74.15%, or a
total increase of eight (8) weighted points, more or less, that enabled Galang to hurdle the 1971 Bar
examinations via a resolution of the Court making 74% the passing average for that year's examination
However, such revision by Atty. Tomacruz could not raise Galang's general average to a passing without any grade below fifty percent (50%) in any subject. Galang thereafter took his lawyer's oath. It
grade because of his failing mark in three more subjects, including Mercantile Law. For the revision of is likewise beyond dispute that he had no authority from the Court or the Committee to initiate such
examinee Galang's notebook in Mercantile Law, respondent Lanuevo neatly set the last phase of his steps towards the said re-evaluation of the answers of Galang or of other examinees.
quite ingenious scheme — by securing authorization from the Bar Examination Committee for the
examiner in Mercantile Law tore-evaluate said notebook.
Denying that he made representations to the examiners concerned that respondent Galang failed only
in their respective subjects and/or was on the borderline of passing, Respondent Lanuevo sought to
At the first meeting of the Bar Examination Committee on February 8, 1972, respondent Lanuevo justify his actuations on the authority of the aforequoted paragraph 4 of the Confidential
suggested that where an examinee failed in only one subject and passed the rest, the examiner Memorandum(Exhs. 1 and 1-A-Lanuevo, Adm. Cases Nos. 1162 & 1164, p. 51, Adm. Case No. 1162;
concerned would review the notebook. Nobody objected to it as irregular and the Committee adopted Vol. VII, p. 4, rec.) distributed to the members of the Bar Examination Committee. He maintains that he
the suggestion (Exhs. A & B-Montecillo, Exh. 2-Pardo, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 41, 72, 63; Vol. Vi, p. acted in good faith and "in his honest belief that the same merited re-evaluation; that in doing so, it was
16, rec.). not his intention to forsake or betray the trust reposed in him as BarConfidant but on the contrary to do
justice to the examinee concerned; and that neither did he act in a presumptuous manner because the
At a subsequent meeting of the Bar Examination Committee, respondent Montecillo was informed by matter of whether or not re-evaluation was in order was left alone to the examiners' decision ..." (Exh.
respondent Lanuevo that a candidate passed all other subjects except Mercantile Law. This 2-Lanuevo, Adm. Case No. 1162, pp. 35-37, rec.).
information was made during the meeting within hearing of the order members, who were all closely
seated together. Respondent Montecillo made known his willingness tore-evaluate the particular paper. But as openly admitted by him in the course of the investigation, the said confidential memorandum
The next day, respondent Lanuevo handed to respondent Montecillo a bar candidate's notebook with was intended solely for the examiners to guide them in the initial correction of the examination papers
Examiner's Code Number 1613 with a grade of 61%. Respondent Montecillo then reviewed the whole and never as a basis for him to even suggest to the examiners the re-evaluation of the examination
paper and after re-evaluating the answers, decided to increase the final grade to 71%. The matter was papers of the examinees (Vol. VII, p. 23, rec.). Any such suggestion or request is not only
not however thereafter officially brought to the Committee for consideration or decision (Exhs. A& B- presumptuous but also offensive to the norms of delicacy.
Montecillo, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 40-41, 70-71; Vol. V, pp. 33-34, rec.).

We believe the Examiners — Pablo, Manalo, Montecillo, Tomacruz, Pardo and Pamatian — whose
Respondent Montecillo declared that without being given the information that the particular examinee declarations on the matter of the misrepresentations and deceptions committed by respondent
failed only in his subject and passed all the others, he would not have consented to make the re- Lanuevo, are clear and consistent as well as corroborate each other.
evaluation of the said paper (Vol. V, p. 33, rec.).Respondent Montecillo likewise added that there was
only one instance he remembers, which is substantiated by his personal records, that he had to
change the grade of an examinee after he had submitted his report, referring to the notebook of For indeed the facts unfolded by the declarations of the respondents-examiners (Adm. Case No. 1164)
examinee Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, with Examiner's Code Number 1613 and with and clarified by extensive cross-examination conducted during the investigation and hearing of the
Office Code Number 954 (Vol. V, pp. 34-35, rec.). cases show how respondent Lanuevo adroitly maneuvered the passing of examinee Ramon E.
Galang, alias Roman E. Galang in the 1971 Bar Examinations. It is patent likewise from the records
that respondent Lanuevo too undue advantage of the trust and confidence reposed in him by the Court
A day or two after February 5, 1972, when respondent Lanuevo went to the residence of respondent- and the Examiners implicit in his position as BarConfidant as well as the trust and confidence that
examiner Pardo to obtain the last bag of 200 notebooks, respondent Lanuevo returned to the prevailed in and characterized his relationship with the five members of the 1971 Bar Examination
residence of respondent Pardo riding in a Volkswagen panel of the Supreme Court of the Philippines Committee, who were thus deceived and induced into re-evaluating the answers of only respondent
with two companions. According to respondent Lanuevo, this was around the second week of Galang in five subjects that resulted in the increase of his grades therein, ultimately enabling him to be
February, 1972, after the first meeting of the Bar Examination Committee. respondent Lanuevo had admitted a member of the Philippine Bar.
with him on that occasion an examinee's notebook bearing Examiner's Code No. 661. Respondent
Lanuevo, after the usual amenities, requested respondent Pardo to review and re-examine, if possible,
the said notebook because, according to respondent Lanuevo, the examine who owns that particular It was plain, simple and unmitigated deception that characterized respondent Lanuevo's well-studied
notebook obtained higher grades in other subjects, the highest of which is 84% in Remedial Law. After and well-calculated moves in successively representing separately to each of the five examiners
clearing with respondent Lanuevo his authority to reconsider the grades, respondent Pardo re- concerned to the effect that the examinee failed only in his particular subject and/or was on the
evaluated the answers of the examine concerned, resulting in an increase of grade from 57% of 66%. borderline of passing. To repeat, the before the unauthorized re-evaluations were made, Galang failed
Said notebook has number 1622 as office code number. It belonged to examinee Ernesto Quitaleg in the five (5) major subjects and in two (2) minor subjects while his general average was only 66.25%
(Exhs. 1 & 2-Pardo, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 58-63; Vol. V, pp. 12-24, 29-30, rec.). — which under no circumstances or standard could it be honestly claimed that the examinee failed
only in one, or he was on the borderline of passing. In fact, before the first notebook of Galang was
referred back to the examiner concerned for re-evaluation, Galang had only one passing mark and this examinees and cannot assume the functions of passing upon the appraisal made by the Examiners
was in Legal Ethics and Practical Exercises, a minor subject, with grade of 81%. The averages and concerned. He is not the over-all Examiner. He cannot presume to know better than the examiner. Any
individual grades of Galang before and after the unauthorized re-evaluation are as follows: request for re-evaluation should be done by the examinee and the same should be addressed to the
Court, which alone can validly act thereon. A Bar Confidant who takes such initiative, exposes himself
to suspicion and thereby compromises his position as well as the image of the Court.
BAI

Respondent Lanuevo's claim that he was merely doing justice to Galang without any intention of
1. Political Law Public betraying the trust and confidence reposed in him by the Court as Bar Confidant, can hardly invite
International Law 68% 78% = 10 pts. belief in the fact of the incontrovertible fact that he singled out Galang's papers for re-evaluation,
or 30 weighted points leaving out the papers of more than ninety (90) examinees with far better averages ranging from 70%
to 73.9% of which he was fully aware (Vol. VI, pp. 46-47, 101, rec.), which could be more properly
BAI claimed as borderline cases. This fact further betrays respondent Lanuevo's claim of absolute good
faith in referring back the papers of Galang to the Examiners for re-evaluation. For certainly, as against
the original weighted average of 66.25% of Galang, there can hardly be any dispute that the cases of
Labor Laws and Social the aforesaid more than ninety (90) examinees were more deserving of reconsideration. Hence, in
Legislations 67% 67% = no re- trying to do justice to Galang, as claimed by respondent Lanuevo, grave injustice was inflicted on the
evaluation made. other examinees of the 1971 Bar examinations, especially the said more than ninety candidates. And
the unexplained failure of respondent Lanuevo to apprise the Court or the Committee or even the Bar
Chairman of the fact of re-evaluation before or after the said re-evaluation and increase of grades,
2. Civil Law 64% 75% = 1 points
precludes, as the same is inconsistent with, any pretension of good faith.
or 33 weighted points.

His request for the re-evaluation of the notebook in Political Law and International Law of Ernesto
Taxation 74% 74% = no re-
Quitaleg and the notebook in Mercantile Law of Alfredo Ty dela Cruz to give his actuations in the case
evaluation made.
of Galang a semblance of impartiality, hoping that the over ninety examinees who were far better
situated than Galang would not give him away. Even the re-evaluation of one notebook of Quitaleg and
3. Mercantile Law 61% 71% = 10 pts. one notebook of Ty dela Cruz violated the agreement of the members of the 1971 Bar Examination
or 30 weighted points. Committee to re-evaluate when the examinee concerned fails only in one subject. Quitaleg and Ty dela
Cruz failed in four (4) and three (3) subjects respectively — as hereinafter shown.
4. Criminal Law 64% 75% = 11 pts. or
22 weighted points. The strange story concerning the figures 954, the office code number given to Galang's notebook,
unveiled for the first time by respondent Lanuevo in his suplemental sworn statement(Exh. 3- Lanuevo,
Adm. Case No. 1162, pp. 45-47. rec.) filed during the investigation with this Court as to why he pried
5. Remedial Law 63.75% (64) 75.5% (75%) = into the papers of Galang deserves scant consideration. It only serves to picture a man desperately
11 pts. or 44 weighted points. clutching at straws in the wind for support. Furthermore, it was revealed by respondent Lanuevo for the
first time only on August 27, 1973 or a period of more than five 95) months after he filed his answer on
Legal Ethics and Practical March 19, 1973(Exh. 2-Lanuevo, Adm. Case No. 1162, pp. 35-36, rec.), showing that it was just an
Exercises 81% 81% = no re- after-thought.
evaluation made.
———————————— B

General Weighted Averages 66.25% 74.15% REFERRAL OF EXAMINEE ALFREDO TY DELA CRUZ NOTEBOOK IN MERCHANTILE LAW TO
RAISE HIS GRADE OF 47% TO 50% TO EXAMINER MANUEL MONTECILLO AND OF EXAMINEE
Hence, by the simple expedient of initiating the re-evaluation of the answers of Galang in the five (5) ERNESTO QUITALEG'S NOTEBOOK IN POLITICAL LAW TO EXAMINER BERNARDO PARDO FOR
subjects under the circumstances already narrated, Galang's original average of 66.25% was RE-EVALUATION, RESULTING IN THE INCREASE OF HIS GRADE IN THAT SUBJECT FROM 57%
increased to 74.15% or an increase of 7.9 weighted points, to the great damage and prejudice of the TO 66%.
integrity of the Bar examinations and to the disadvantage of the other examinees. He did this in favor
only of examinee Galang, with the possible addition of examinees Ernesto Quitaleg and Alfredo Ty Likewise, respondent Victorio D. Lanuevo admitted having referred back the aforesaid notebooks on
dela Cruz. But only one notebook was re-evaluated for each of the latter who — Political Law and Mercantile Law and Political Law respectively of Alfredo Ty dela Cruz and Ernesto Quitaleg to the
Public International Law for Quitaleg and Mercantile Law for Ty dela Cruz. Examiners concerned.

The Office of the Bar Confidant, it must be stressed, has absolutely nothing to do in the re-evaluation The records are not clear, however, under what circumstances the notebooks of Ty dela Cruz and
or reconsideration of the grades of examinees who fail to make the passing mark before or after their Quitaleg were referred back to the Examiners concerned. Respondent Lanuevo claimed that these two
notebooks are submitted to it by the Examiners. After the corrected notebooks are submitted to him by cases were officially brought to the Bar Examination Committee during its first meeting (Vol. VI, pp. 50-
the Examiners, his only function is to tally the individual grades of every examinee in all subjects taken 51, rec.) and the latter decided to refer them back to the Examiners concerned for re-evaluation with
and thereafter compute the general average. That done, he will then prepare a comparative data respect to the case of Quitaleg and to remove the disqualification in the case of Ty dela Cruz(Vol. VI,
showing the percentage of passing and failing in relation to a certain average to be submitted to the pp. 33-39, 84-86, rec.). Respondent Lanuevo further claimed that the date of these two cases were
Committee and to the Court and on the basis of which the Court will determine the passing average, contained in a sheet of paper which was presented at the said first meeting of the Committee (Vol. VI,
whether 75 or 74 or 73, etc. The Bar Confidant has no business evaluating the answers of the pp. 39-43, 49-51, rec.). Likewise a record of the dates of every meeting of the Committee was made by
respondent Lanuevo (Vol. VI, p. 28, rec.). The alleged sheet containing the date of the two examinees Ernesto Quitaleg's grades and averages before and after the re-evaluation of his grade in Political Law
and record of the dates of the meeting of the Committee were not presented by respondent Lanuevo are as follows:
as, according to him, he left them inadvertently in his desk in the Confidential Room when he went on
leave after the release of the Bar results (Vol. VI, pp. 28, 41-45, rec.). It appears, however, that the
inventory conducted by officials of the Court in the Confidential Room of respondent Lanuevo did not BA
yield any such sheet of record (Exh. X, Adm. Case No. 1162, p. 74, rec.; Vol. VIII, pp. 11-13, 20-22,
29-31, rec.). Political Law 57% 66% = 9 pts. or 27
weighted points
Respondent Examiner Montecillo, Mercantile Law, maintained that there was only one notebook in Labor Laws 73% 73% = No reevaluation
Mercantile Law which was officially brought to him and this is substantiated by his personal file and Civil Law 75% 75% = "
record (Vol. VI, pp. 34-35, rec.). According to him, this notebook's examiner code number is 1613 (Vol. Taxation 69% 69% = "
V, p.35, rec.) and is owned by Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang. It appears, however, that the Mercantile Law 68% 68% = "
original grade of 47% in Mercantile Law of Ty dela Cruz was changed to 50% as appearing in the Criminal Law 78% 78% = "
cover of the notebook of said examinee and the change is authenticated with the initial of Examiner Remedial Law 85% 85% = "
Montecillo. He was present when respondent Lanuevo presented in evidence the notebook of Ty dela Legal Ethics 83% 83% = "
Cruz bearing Examiner code number 951 and Office Code Number 110 as Exhibit 9-Lanuevo in ————————————————
Administrative Case No. 1162, and the figures 47 crossed out, replaced by the figures 50 bearing the
initial of Examiner Montecillo as Exhibit 9-a-Lanuevo (Adm. Case No. 1162, p. 48, rec.; Vol. VI, pp. 23- Average (weighted) 73.15% 74.5%
24, Vol. VIII, p. 4, rec.); but Atty. Montecillo did not interpose any objection to their admission in
evidence.
(Vol. VI, pp. 26-27; Exhs. 10 and 10-A-Lanuevo, Adm. Case No. 1162, rec.)

In this connection, respondent Examiner Pardo testified that he remembers a case of an examinee
presented to the Committee, who obtained passing marks in all subjects except in one and the Alfredo Ty dela Cruz, at the time his notebook in Mercantile Law was referred to Examiner Montecillo
Committee agreed to refer back to the Examiner concerned the notebook in the subject in which the to remove the disqualification grade of 47% in said subject, had two (2) other failing grades. These are:
examinee failed (Vol. V, pp. 15-16, rec.). He cannot recall the subject, but he is certain that it was not
Political Law (Vol. V, p. 16, rec.).Further, Pardo declared that he is not aware of any case of an
Political Law 70%
examinee who was on the borderline of passing but who got a grade below 50% in one subject that
Taxation 72%
was taken up by the Committee (Vol. V, pp. 16-17, rec.).

His grades and averages before and after the disqualifying grade was removed are as follows:
Examiner Montecillo testified that it was the notebook with Examiner Code Number 1613 (belonging to
Galang) which was referred to the Committee and the Committee agreed to return it to the Examiner
concerned. The day following the meeting in which the case of an examinee with Code Number 1613 BA
was taken up, respondent Lanuevo handed him said notebook and he accordingly re-evaluated it. This
particular notebook with Office Code Number 954 belongs to Galang.
Political Law 70% 70% = No reevaluation
Labor Laws 75% 75% = "
Examiner Tomacruz recalled a case of an examinee whose problem was Mercantile Law that was Civil Law 89% 89% = "
taken up by the Committee. He is not certain of any other case brought to the Committee (Vol. V, pp. Taxation 72% 72% = "
59-61, rec.). Pardo declared that there was no case of an examinee that was referred to the Committee Mercantile Law 47% 50% = 3 pts. or 9
that involved Political Law. He re-evaluated the answers of Ernesto Quitaleg in Political Law upon the weighted points
representation made by respondent Lanuevo to him. Criminal Law 78% 78% = no reevaluation
Remedial Law 88% 88% = "
Legal Ethics 79% 79% = "
As heretofore stated, it was this consensus at the meeting on February 8, 1972 of the members of the
—————————————————
Committee that where an examinee failed in only one subject and passed all the others, the Examiner
in whose subject the examinee failed should re-evaluate or recheck the notebook (Vol. V, p. 16, rec.:
Exh. 2-Pardo, allegation No. 9, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 60-63, Exh. A-Montecillo, Allegation No. 2, Weighted Averages 74.95% 75.4%
Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 40-41, and Exh. B-Montecillo, Adm. Case No. 1164, p. 72, rec.).
(Vol. VI, pp. 26-27, rec.).
At the time the notebook of Ernesto Quitaleg in Political Law with a grade of 57% was referred back to
Examiner Pardo, said examinee had other failing grades in three (3) subjects, as follows:
The re-evaluation of the answers of Quitaleg in Political Law and the answers of Ty dela Cruz in
Mercantile Law, violated the consensus of the Bar Examination Committee in February, 1971, which
Labor Laws 3% violation was due to the misrepresentation of respondent Lanuevo.

Taxation 69% It must be stated that the referral of the notebook of Galang in Mercantile Law to Examiner Montecillo
can hardly be said to be covered by the consensus of the Bar Examination Committee because even
at the time of said referral, which was after the unauthorized re-evaluation of his answers of four (4)
Mercantile Law 68%
subjects, Galang had still failing grades in Taxation and Labor Laws. His re-evaluated grade of 74.5%
in Remedial Law was considered 75% under the Confidential Memorandum and was so entered in the Section 2 of Rule 138 of the Revised Rules of Court of 1964, in connection, among others, with the
record. His grade in Mercantile Law as subsequently re-evaluated by Examiner Montecillo was 71%. character requirement of candidates for admission to the Bar, provides that "every applicant for
admission as a member of the Bar must be ... of good moral
character ... and must produce before the Supreme Court satisfactory evidence of good moral
Respondent Lanuevo is therefore guilty of serious misconduct — of having betrayed the trust and character, and that no charges against him involving moral turpitude, have been filed or are pending in
confidence reposed in him as Bar Confidant, thereby impairing the integrity of the Bar examinations any court in the Philippines." Prior to 1964, or under the old Rules of Court, a bar applicant was
and undermining public faith in the Supreme Court. He should be disbarred. required to produce before the Supreme Court satisfactory testimonials of good moral character (Sec.
2, Rule 127). Under both rules, every applicant is duty bound to lay before the Court all his involvement
As to whether Ernesto Quitaleg and Alfredo Ty dela Cruz should be disbarred or their names stricken in any criminal case, pending or otherwise terminated, to enable the Court to fully ascertain or
from the Roll of Attorneys, it is believed that they should be required to show cause and the determine applicant's moral character. Furthermore, as to what crime involves moral turpitude, is for
corresponding investigation conducted. the supreme Court to determine. Hence, the necessity of laying before or informing the Court of one's
personal record — whether he was criminally indicted, acquitted, convicted or the case dismissed or is
still pending — becomes more compelling. The forms for application to take the Bar examinations
III provided by the Supreme Court beginning the year 1965 require the disclosure not only of criminal
cases involving moral turpitude filed or pending against the applicant but also of all other criminal
cases of which he has been accused. It is of course true that the application form used by respondent
Re: Administrative Case No. 1163, Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, respondent.
Galang when he took the Bar for the first time in 1962 did not expressly require the disclosure of the
applicant's criminal records, if any. But as already intimated, implicit in his task to show satisfactory
A evidence or proof of good moral character is his obligation to reveal to the Court all his involvement in
any criminal case so that the Court can consider them in the ascertainment and determination of his
moral character. And undeniably, with the applicant's criminal records before it, the Court will be in a
The name of respondent Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, should likewise be stricken off the better position to consider the applicant's moral character; for it could not be gainsaid that an
Roll of Attorneys. This is a necessary consequence of the un-authorized re-evaluation of his answers applicant's involvement in any criminal case, whether pending or terminated by its dismissal or
in five(5) major subjects — Civil Law, Political and International Law, Criminal Law, Remedial Law, and applicant's acquittal or conviction, has a bearing upon his character or fitness for admission to the Bar.
Mercantile Law. In 1963 and 1964, when respondent Galang took the Bar for the second and third time, respectively,
the application form provided by the Court for use of applicants already required the applicant to
The judicial function of the Supreme Court in admitting candidates to the legal profession, which declare under oath that "he has not been accused of, indicted for or convicted by any court or tribunal
necessarily involves the exercise of discretion, requires: (1) previous established rules and principles; of any offense involving moral turpitude; and that there is no pending case of that nature against him."
(2) concrete facts, whether past or present, affecting determinate individuals; and (3) a decision as to By 1966, when Galang took the Bar examinations for the fourth time, the application form prepared by
whether these facts are governed by the rules and principles (In re: Cunanan — Flunkers' Petition for the Court for use of applicants required the applicant to reveal all his criminal cases whether involving
Admission to the Bar -- 94 Phil. 534, 544-545). The determination of whether a bar candidate has moral turpitude or not. In paragraph 4 of that form, the applicant is required under oath to declare that
obtained the required passing grade certainly involves discretion (Legal and Judicial Ethics, Justice "he has not been charged with any offense before a Fiscal, Municipal Judge, or other officer; or
Martin, 1969 ed., p. 13). accused of, indicted for or convicted by any court or tribunal of any crime involving moral turpitude; nor
is there a pending case against him" (Adm. Case No. 1163, p. 56, rec.). Yet, respondent Galang
continued to intentionally withhold or conceal from the Court his criminal case of slight physical injuries
In the exercise of this function, the Court acts through a Bar Examination Committee, composed of a which was then and until now is pending in the City Court of Manila; and thereafter repeatedly omitted
member of the Court who acts as Chairman and eight (8) members of the Bar who act as examiners in to make mention of the same in his applications to take the Bar examinations in 1967, 1969 and 1971.
the eight (8) bar subjects with one subject assigned to each. Acting as a sort of liaison officer between
the Court and the Bar Chairman, on one hand, and the individual members of the Committee, on the
other, is the Bar Confidant who is at the same time a deputy clerk of the Court. Necessarily, every act All told, respondent Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, is guilty of fraudulently concealing and
of the Committee in connection with the exercise of discretion in the admission of examinees to withholding from the Court his pending criminal case for physical injuries in 1962, 1963, 1964, 1966,
membership of the Bar must be in accordance with the established rules of the Court and must always 1967, 1969 and 1971; and in 1966, 1967,1969 and 1971, he committed perjury when he declared
be subject to the final approval of the Court. With respect to the Bar Confidant, whose position is under oath that he had no pending criminal case in court. By falsely representing to the Court that he
primarily confidential as the designation indicates, his functions in connection with the conduct of the had no criminal case pending in court, respondent Galang was allowed unconditionally to take the Bar
Bar examinations are defined and circumscribed by the Court and must be strictly adhered to. examinations seven (7) times and in 1972 was allowed to take his oath.

The re-evaluation by the Examiners concerned of the examination answers of respondent Galang in That the concealment of an attorney in his application to take the Bar examinations of the fact that he
five (5) subjects, as already clearly established, was initiated by Respondent Lanuevo without any had been charged with, or indicted for, an alleged crime, is a ground for revocation of his license to
authority from the Court, a serious breach of the trust and confidence reposed by the Court in him as practice law is well — settled (see 165 ALR 1151, 7 CJS 741). Thus:
Bar Confidant. Consequently, the re-evaluation that enabled respondent Galang to pass the 1971 Bar
examinations and to be admitted to the Bar is a complete nullity. The Bar Confidant does not possess [1] It requires no argument to reach the conclusion that the respondent, in
any discretion with respect to the matter of admission of examinees to the Bar. He is not clothed with withholding from the board of law examiners and from the justice of this court, to
authority to determine whether or not an examinee's answers merit re-evaluation or re-evaluation or whom he applied for admission, information respecting so serious a matter as an
whether the Examiner's appraisal of such answers is correct. And whether or not the examinee indictment for a felony, was guilty of fraud upon the court (cases cited).
benefited was in connivance or a privy thereto is immaterial. What is decisive is whether the
proceedings or incidents that led to the candidate's admission to the Bar were in accordance with the
rules. [2] It is equally clear that, had the board of law examiners, or the judge to whom
he applied for admission, been apprised of the true situation, neither the
certificate of the board nor of the judge would have been forthcoming (State ex
B rel. Board of Law Examiners v. Podell, 207 N — W — 709 — 710).
The license of respondent Podell was revoke and annulled, and he was required to surrender to the RE: Administrative Case No. 1164, Assistant Solicitor General Bernardo Pardo (now CFI Judge),
clerk of court the license issued to him, and his name was stricken from the roll of attorneys (p. 710). Judge Ramon Pamatian(Later Associate Justice of the Court of Appeals, now deceased)Atty. Manuel
G. Montecillo, Atty. Fidel Manalo, Atty. Manuel Tomacruz and Atty. Guillermo Pablo, Jr., respondents.
Likewise in Re Carpel, it was declared that:
All respondents Bar examiners candidly admitted having made the re-evaluation and/or re-correction of
the papers in question upon the misrepresentation of respondent BarConfidant Lanuevo. All, however,
[1] The power to admit to the bar on motion is conferred in the discretion of the professed good faith; and that they re-evaluated or increased the grades of the notebooks without
Appellate Division.' In the exercise of the discretion, the court should be informed knowing the identity of the examinee who owned the said notebooks; and that they did the same
truthfully and frankly of matters tending to show the character of the applicant without any consideration or expectation of any. These the records clearly demonstrate and WE are of
and his standing at the bar of the state from which he comes. The finding of the opinion and WE so declare that indeed the respondents-examiners made the re-evaluation or re-
indictments against him, one of which was still outstanding at the time of his correcion in good faith and without any consideration whatsoever.
motion, were facts which should have been submitted to the court, with such
explanations as were available. Silence respecting them was reprehensible, as
tending to deceive the court (165 NYS, 102, 104; emphasis supplied). Considering however the vital public interest involved in the matter of admission of members to the
Bar, the respondents bar examiners, under the circumstances, should have exercised greater care and
caution and should have been more inquisitive before acceding to the request of respondent Bar
Carpel's admission to the bar was revoked (p. 105). Confidant Lanuevo. They could have asked the Chairman of the Bar Examination Committee, who
would have referred the matter to the Supreme Court. At least the respondents-examiners should have
Furthermore, respondent's persistent denial of his involvement in any criminal case despite his having required respondent Lanuevo to produce or show them the complete grades and/or the average of the
been apprised by the Investigation of some of the circumstances of the criminal case including the very examinee represented by respondent Lanuevo to have failed only in their respective and particular
name of the victim in that case(he finally admitted it when he was confronted by the victim himself, who subject and/or was on the borderline of passing to fully satisfy themselves that the examinee
was called to testify thereon), and his continued failure for about thirteen years to clear his name in that concerned was really so circumstances. This they could have easily done and the stain on the Bar
criminal case up to the present time, indicate his lack of the requisite attributes of honesty, probity and examinations could have been avoided.
good demeanor. He is therefore unworthy of becoming a member of the noble profession of law.
Respondent Bar examiners Montecillo, Pamatian, and Manalo claimed and so declared under oath that
While this aspect of the investigation was not part of the formal resolution of the Court requiring him to the answers of respondent Galang really deserved or merited the increased grades; and so with
explain why his name should not be stricken from the Roll of Attorneys, respondent Galang was, as respondent Pardo in connection with the re-evaluation of Ernesto Quitaleg's answers in Political Law.
early as August, 1973, apprised of his omission to reveal to the Court his pending criminal case. Yet he With respect to respondents Tomacruz and Pablo, it would appear that they increased the grades of
did not offer any explanation for such omission. Galang in their respective subject solely because of the misrepresentations of Respondent Lanuevo.
Hence, in the words of respondent Tomacruz: "You brought to me one paper and you said that this
particular examinee had almost passed, however, in my subject he received 60 something, I cannot
Under the circumstances in which respondent Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, was allowed remember the exact average and if he would get a few points higher, he would get a passing
to take the Bar examinations and the highly irregular manner in which he passed the Bar, WE have no average. I agreed to do that because I did not wish to be the one causing his failure. ..." (Vol. V, pp. 60-
other alternative but to order the surrender of his attorney's certificate and the striking out of his name 61, rec.; see also allegations 3 and 4, Exh. 1-Tomacruz, Adm. Case No. 1164, p. 69, rec.; emphasis
from the Roll of Attorneys. For as WE said in Re Felipe del Rosario: ours). And respondent Pablo: "... he told me that this particular examinee seems to have passed in
allot her subject except this subject and that if I can re-evaluate this examination notebook and
increase the mark to at least 75, this particular examinee will pass the bar examinations so I believe I
The practice of the law is not an absolute right to be granted every one who
asked him 'Is this being done?' and he said 'Yes, that is the practice used to be done before to help out
demands it, but is a privilege to be extended or withheld in the exercise of sound
examinees who are failing in just one subject' so I readily acceded to his request and said 'Just leave it
discretion. The standards of the legal profession are not satisfied by conduct
with me and I will try to re-evaluate' and he left it with me and what i did was to go over the book and
which merely enables one to escape the penalties of the criminal law. It would be
tried to be as lenient as I could. While I did not mark correct the answers which were wrong, what I did
a disgrace to the Judiciary to receive one whose integrity is questionable as an
was to be more lenient and if the answers was correct although it was not complete I raise the grade
officer of the court, to clothe him with all the prestige of its confidence, and then
so I had a total of 78 instead of 68 and what I did was to correct the grading sheet accordingly and
to permit him to hold himself as a duly authorized member of the bar (citing
initial the changes" (Vol. V, pp. 44-45, rec.; emphasis supplied).
American cases) [52 Phil. 399-401].

It could not be seriously denied, however, that the favorable re-evaluations made by respondents
What WE now do with respondent Ramon E. Galang, alias Roman E. Galang, in this present case is
Pamatian, Montecillo, Manalo and Pardo notwithstanding their declarations that the increases in
not without any precedent in this jurisdiction. WE had on several occasions in the past nullified the
grades they gave were deserved by the examinee concerned, were to a certain extent influenced by
admission of successful bar candidates to the membership of the Bar on the grounds, among others, of
the misrepresentation and deception committed by respondent Lanuevo. Thus in their own words:
(a)misrepresentations of, or false pretenses relative to, the requirement on applicant's educational
attainment [Tapel vs. Publico, resolution of the Supreme Court striking off the name of Juan T. Publico
from the Roll of Attorneys on the basis of the findings of the Court Investigators contained in their Montecillo —
report and recommendation, Feb. 23, 1962; In re: Telesforo A. Diao, 7 SCRA 475-478; (b) lack of good
moral character [In re: Peralta, 101 Phil. 313-314]; and (c) fraudulent passing of the Bar examinations
[People vs. Romualdez -- re: Luis Mabunay, 57 Phil. 151; In re: Del Rosario, 52 Phil. 399 and People Q And by reason of that information you made the re-
vs. Castro and Doe, 54 Phil. 42]. In the cases of Romualdez (Mabunay) and Castro, the Court found evaluation of the paper?
that the grades of Mabunay and Castro were falsified and they were convicted of the crime of
falsification of public documents. A Yeas, your Honor.

IV
Q Would you have re-evaluated the paper of your own At any rate, WE are convinced, in the light of the explanations of the respondents-examiners, which
accord in the absence of such information? were earlier quoted in full, that their actuations in connection with the re-evaluation of the answers of
Galang in five (5) subjects do not warrant or deserve the imposition of any disciplinary action. WE find
their explanations satisfactory. Nevertheless, WE are constrained to remind herein respondents-
A No, your Honor, because I have submitted my report at examiners that their participation in the admission of members to the Bar is one impressed with the
that time" (Vol. V, p. 33, rec.; see also allegations in highest consideration of public interest — absolute purity of the proceedings — and so are required to
paragraphs 2, 3, 4 & 5, Affidavit of April 17, 1972, Exh. B- exercise the greatest or utmost case and vigilance in the performance of their duties relative thereto.
Montecillo; allegation No. 2, Answer dated march 19, 1973,
Exh. A-Montecillo, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 40-41, and 72,
rec.). V

Pamatian — Respondent Atty. Victorio D. Lanuevo, in his memorandum filed on November 14, 1973, claimed that
respondent-examiner Pamatian "in bringing up this unfounded cause, or lending undue assistance or
support thereto ... was motivated with vindictiveness due to respondent's refusal to be pressured into
3. That sometime in the later part of January of this year, he brought back to me helping his (examiner's) alleged friend — a participant in the 1971 Bar Examinations whom said
an examination booklet in Civil Law for re-evaluation because according to him examiner named as Oscar Landicho and who, the records will show, did not pass said examinations
the owner of the paper is on the borderline and if I could reconsider his grade to (p. 9, Lanuevo's memo, Adm. Case No. 1162).
75% the candidate concerned will get passing mark;

It must be stated that this is a very serious charge against the honor and integrity of the late Justice
4. That taking his word for it and under the belief that it was really the practice Ramon Pamatian, who passed away on October 18, 1973 and therefore cannot refute Lanuevo's
and policy of the Supreme Court to do so and in the further belief that I was just insinuations. Respondent Victorio D. Lanuevo did not bring this out during the investigation which in his
manifesting cooperation in doing so, I re-evaluated the paper and reconsidered words is "essential to his defense. "His pretension that he did not make this charge during the
the grade to 75%; ..." (Exh. 2-Pamatian, Adm. Case No. 1164, p. 55, rec.); and investigation when Justice Pamatian was still alive, and deferred the filing of such charge against
Justice Pamatian and possibly also against Oscar Landicho before the latter departed for Australia
5. That the above re-evaluation was made in good faith and under the belief that "until this case shall have been terminated lest it be misread or misinterpreted as being intended as a
I am authorized to do so in view of them is representation of said Atty. Victorio leverage for a favorable outcome of this case on the part of respondent or an act of reprisal", does not
Lanuevo, ..." (Exh. 1-Pamatian, Adm. Case No. 1164, pp. 33-34, rec.). invite belief; because he does not impugn the motives of the five other members of the 1971 Bar
Examination Committee, who also affirmed that he deceived them into re-evaluating or revising the
grades of respondent Galang in their respective subjects.
Manalo —

It appears, however, that after the release of the results of the 1971 Bar examinations, Oscar
(c) In revising the grade of the particular examinee concerned, herein respondent Landicho, who failed in that examinations, went to see and did see Civil Law examiner Pamatian for
carefully evaluated each and every answer written in the notebook. Testing the the purpose of seeking his help in connection with the 1971 Bar Examinations. Examiner Pamatian
answer by the criteria laid down by the Court, and giving the said examinee the advised Landicho to see the Chairman of the 1971 Bar Examination Committee. Examiner Pamatian
benefit of the doubt in view of Mr. Lanuevo's representation that it was only in mentioned in passing to Landicho that an examination booklet was re-evaluated by him (Pamatian)
that particular subject that said examinee failed, herein respondent became before the release of the said bar results (Vol. V, pp. 6-7, rec). Even though such information was
convinced that the said examinee deserved a higher grade than that previously divulged by respondent Pamatian after the official release of the bar results, it remains an indecorous
given him, but he did not deserve, in herein respondent's honest appraisal, to be act, hardly expected of a member of the Judiciary who should exhibit restraint in his actuations
given the passing grade of demanded by resolute adherence to the rules of delicacy. His unseemly act tended to undermine the
75%. ..."(allegation 5-c, p. 38, Exh. 1-Manalo, rec.; emphasis supplied). integrity of the bar examinations and to impair public faith in the Supreme Court.

Pardo — VI

... I considered it entirely humanly possible to have erred, because I corrected The investigation failed to unearth direct evidence that the illegal machination of respondent Lanuevo
that particular notebook on December 31,1971, considering especially the to enable Galang to pass the 1971 Bar examinations was committed for valuable consideration.
representation of the Bar Confidant that the said examinee had obtained higher
grades in other subjects, the highest of which was 84% in Remedial Law, if I
recall A
correctly. ... (allegation 7, Exh. 2-Pardo, Adm. Case No. 1164, p. 62, rec.;
emphasis supplied). There are, however, acquisitions made by Respondent Lanuevo immediately after the official release
of the 1971 Bar examinations in February, 1972, which may be out of proportion to his salary as Bar
With the misrepresentations and the circumstances utilized by respondent Lanuevo to induce the Confidant and Deputy Clerk of Court of the Supreme Court.
herein examiners to make the re-evaluation adverted to, no one among them can truly claim that the
re-evaluation effected by them was impartial or free from any improper influence, their conceded 1. On April 5, 1972, respondent Lanuevo and his wife acquired from the BF
integrity, honesty and competence notwithstanding. Homes, Inc. a house and lot with an area of 374 square meters, more or less, for
the amount of P84,114.00. The deed of sale was dated March 5, 1972 but was
Consequently, Galang cannot justifiably claim that he deserved the increased grades given after the notarized only on April 5, 1972. On the same date, however, respondent
said re-evaluations(Galang's memo attached to the records, Adm. Case No. 1163). Lanuevo and his wife executed two (2)mortgages covering the said house and lot
in favor of BF Homes, Inc. in the total amount of P67,291.20 (First mortgage —
P58,879.80, Entry No. 90913: date of instrument — April 5, 1972, date of 2. Listed as an asset in his 1972 Statement of Assets and Liabilities is a 1956
inscription — April 20, 1972: Second mortgage — P8,411.40, Entry No. 90914: VW car valued at P5,200.00. That he acquired this car sometime between
date of instrument — April 5, 1972, date of inscription — April 20, 1972). [D-2 to January, 1972 and November, 1972 could be inferred from the fact that no such
D-4, Vol. III, rec.]. Respondent Lanuevo paid as down payment the amount of car or any car was listed in his statement of assets and liabilities of 1971 or in the
only P17,000.00, which according to him is equivalent to 20%, more or less, of years previous to 1965. It appears, however, that his listed total assets, excluding
the purchase price of P84,114.00. Respondent Lanuevo claimed that P5,000.00 receivables in his 1971 Statement was P19,000.00, while in his 1972 (as of
of the P17,000.00 was his savings while the remaining the P12,000.00 came November, 1972) Statement, his listed total assets, excluding the house and lot
from his sister in Okinawa in the form of a loan and received by him through a was P18,211.00, including the said 1956 VW car worth P5,200.00.
niece before Christmas of 1971 in dollars ($2000) [Vol. VII, pp. 41-48; Vol. VIII,
pp. 2-3, rec.]
The proximity in point of time between the official release of the 1971 Bar
examinations and the acquisition of the above-mentioned properties, tends to link
It appears, however, that his alleged P5,000.00 savings and P12,000.00 loan or tie up the said acquisitions with the illegal machination committed by
from his sister; are not fully reflected and accounted for in respondent's 1971 respondent Lanuevo with respect to respondent Galang's examination papers or
Statement of Assets and Liabilities which he filed on January 17, 1972. to show that the money used by respondent Lanuevo in the acquisition of the
above properties came from respondent Galang in consideration of his passing
the Bar.
In said 1971 statement, respondent Lanuevo listed under Assets a bank deposit
in the amount of only P2,000.00. In his 1972 statement, his bank deposit listed
under Assets was in the amount of P1,011.00, which shows therefore that of the During the early stage of this investigation but after the Court had informed respondent Lanuevo of the
P2,000.00 bank deposit listed in his 1971 statement under Assets, only the serious irregularities in the 1971 Bar examinations alleged in Oscar Landicho's Confidential Letter and
amount of P989.00 was used or withdrawn. The amount of P18,000.00 in fact, after Respondent Lanuevo had filed on April 12, 1972 his sworn statement on the matter, as
receivable listed under Assets in his 1971 statement was not realized because ordered by the Court, respondent Lanuevo surprisingly filed his letter or resignation on October 13,
the transaction therein involved did not push through (Statement of Assets and 1972 with the end in view of retiring from the Court. His resignation before he was required to show
Liabilities of respondent Lanuevo from 1965 to 1972; Vol. VIII, pp. 47-48, rec.). cause on March 5, 1973 but after he was informed of the said irregularities, is indicative of a
consciousness of guilt.
Likewise, the alleged December, 1971 $2000 loan of respondent from his
married sister in Okinawa is extremely doubtful. In the first place, said amount of It must be noted that immediately after the official release of the results of the 1971 Bar examinations,
$2000 (P12,000.00) is not reflected in his 1971Statement of Assets and respondent Lanuevo went on vacation and sick leave from March 16, 1972 to January 15, 1973,
Liabilities filed on January 17, 1972. Secondly, the alleged note which he obtaining the case value thereof in lump sum in the amount of P11,000.00. He initially claimed at the
allegedly received from his sister at the time he received the $200 was not even investigation that h e used a part thereof as a down payment for his BF Homes house and lot (Vol. VII,
presented by respondent during the investigation. And according to Respondent pp. 40-48, rec.), which he bought on April 5, 1972.
Lanuevo himself, while he considered this a loan, his sister did not seriously
consider it as one. In fact, no mode or time of payment was agreed upon by
them. And furthermore, during the investigation, respondent Lanuevo promised Criminal proceedings may be instituted against respondent Lanuevo under Section 3 (a & e) in relation
to furnish the Investigator the address of his sister in Okinawa. Said promise was to Section 9 of Republic Act No. 1379 (Anti-Graft Law) for:
not fulfilled as borne out by the records. Considering that there is no showing that
his sister, who has a family of her own, is among the top earners in Okinawa or (a) Persuading inducing or influencing another public officer to perform an act
has saved a lot of money to give to him, the conclusion, therefore, that constituting a violation of rules and regulations duly promulgated by competent
the P17,000.00 of respondent Lanuevo was either an ill-gotten or undeclared authority or an offense in connection with the official duties of the latter, or
income is inevitable under the foregoing circumstances. allowing himself to be presented, induced, or influenced to commit such violation
or offense.
On August 14, 1972, respondent Lanuevo and his wife mortgaged their BF
Homes house and lot to the GSIS for the amount of P65,000.00 (Entry No. xxx xxx xxx
4992: August 14, 1972 — date of instrument; August 23, 1972 — date of
inscription). On February 28, 1973, the second mortgage in favor of BF Homes,
Entry No. 90914, was redeemed by respondent and was subsequently cancelled (e) Causing any undue injury to any party, including the Government, or giving
on March 20,1973, Entry No. 30143. Subsequently, or on March 2, 1973 the first any private party any unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference in the
mortgage in favor of BF Homes, Entry No. 90913 was also redeemed by discharge of his official administrative or judicial functions through manifest
respondent Lanuevo and thereafter cancelled on March 20, 1973, (See D-2 to D- partiality, evidence bad faith or gross inexcusable negligence. This provision
4, Vol. III, rec.). Hence, only the mortgage in favor of GSIS remains as the shall apply to officers and employees of offices or government corporations
encumbrance of respondent's house and lot. According to respondent Lanuevo, charged with the grant of licenses or permits or other concessions.
the monthly amortization of the GSIS mortgage is P778.00 a month, but that
since May of 1973, he was unable to pay the same. In his 1972 Statement of
Section 8 of said Republic Act No. 3019 authorizes the dismissal or removal of a public officer once it
Assets and Liabilities, which he filed in connection with his resignation and
is determined that his property or money "is manifestly out of proportion to his salary as such public
retirement (filed October 13, 1972), the house and lot declared as part of his
officer or employee and to his other lawful income and the income from legitimately acquired property
assets, were valued at P75,756.90. Listed, however, as an item in his liabilities in
... " (Sec. 2, Rep. Act 1379; Sec. 8, Rep. Act 3019).
the same statement was the GSIS real estate loan in the amount
of P64,200.00 (1972 Statement of Assets and Liabilities).
It should be stressed, however, that respondent Lanuevo's aforementioned Statements of Assets and
Liabilities were not presented or taken up during the investigation; but they were examined as they are
part of the records of this Court.
B He attended meetings of the Philippine Veterans Legion in his chapter in Samar only and does not
remember having attended its meeting here in Manila, even while he was employed with the Philippine
Veterans Board. He is not a member of the Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor (Vol. VII, p.51, rec.).
There are likewise circumstances indicating possible contacts between respondent Ramon E. Galang
and/or his father and respondent Victorio D. Lanuevo before the latter become the bar Confidant.
On November 27, 1941, while respondent Lanuevo was with the Philippine Army stationed at Camp
Manacnac, Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija, he was stricken with pneumonia and was hospitalized at the
1. Respondent Ramon E. Galang was a beneficiary of the G.I Bill of Rights educational program of the Nueva Ecija Provincial Hospital as a result and was still confined there when their camp was bombed
Philippine Veterans Board from his high school days — 1951 to 1955 — up to his pre-law studies at and strafed by Japanese planes on December 13, 1941 (Sworn statement of respondent Lanuevo
the MLQ Educational Institution (now MLQ University) — 1955 to 1958. From 1948 to 1958, dated August 27, 1973, Adm. Case No. 1162, p. 46, rec.).
respondent Victorio D. Lanuevo was connected with the Philippine Veterans Board which is the
governmental agency entrusted with the affairs of our veterans including the implementation of the
Veterans Bill of Rights. From 1955 to 1958, Respondent Lanuevo successively held the position of German Galang, father of respondent Galang, was a member of the Banal Guerilla Forces, otherwise
Junior Investigator, Veterans Claims Investigator, Supervising Veterans Investigator and Veterans known as the Banal Regiment. He was commissioned and inducted as a member thereof on January
Claims Investigator (Service Record, p. 9, Adm. Case No. 1162). During that period of time, therefore, 16, 1942 and was given the rank of first lieutenant. His unit "was attached and served into the XI-
respondent Lanuevo had direct contacts with applicants and beneficiaries of the Veterans Bill of Corps, US Army; XIII-C US Army, 43rd Div., US Army, stationed headquarters at Sta. Rosa, Nueva
Rights. Galang's educational benefits was approved on March 16, 1954, retroactive as of the date of Ecija and with the 38th Division, US army stationed at Corregidor in the mopping-up operations against
waiver — July 31, 1951, which is also the date of filing (A, Vol. IV, rec.). the enemies, from 9 May 1945 date of recognition to 31 December 1945, date of
demobilization"(Affidavit of Jose Banal dated December 22, 1947, Vol. IV, A-3, rec.).
It is alleged by respondent Ramon E. Galang that it was his father who all the time attended to the
availment of the said educational benefits and even when he was already in Manila taking up his pre- It should be stressed that once the bar examiner has submitted the corrected notebooks to the Bar
law at MLQ Educational Institution from 1955 to 1958. In 1955, respondent Galang was already 19 Confidant, the same cannot be withdrawn for any purpose whatsoever without prior authority from the
years old, and from 1957 to 1958, he was employed as a technical assistant in the office of Senator Court. Consequently, this Court expresses herein its strong disapproval of the actuations of the bar
Roy (Vol. V, pp. 79-80, 86-87, rec.).[Subsequently, during the investigation, he claimed that he was the examiners in Administrative Case No. 1164 as above delineated.
private secretary of Senator Puyat in 1957 (Vol. VI, pp. 12-13, rec.)]. It appears, however, that a copy
of the notice-letter dated June 28, 1955 of the Philippine Veterans Board to the MLQ Educational
Institution on the approval of the transfer of respondent Galang from Sta. Rita Institute to the MLQ WHEREFORE, IN ADMINISTRATIVE CASE NO. 1162, RESPONDENT VICTORIO D. LANUEVO IS
Educational Institution effective the first semester of the school year 1955-56 was directly addressed HEREBY DISBARRED AND HIS NAME ORDERED STRICKEN FROM THE ROLL OF ATTORNEYS;
and furnished to respondent Ramon E. Galang at 2292 Int. 8 Banal St., Tondo, Manila (A-12, Vol. IV, AND IN ADMINISTRATIVE CASE NO. 1163, RESPONDENT RAMON E. GALANG, alias Roman E.
rec.). GALANG, IS HEREBY LIKEWISE DISBARRED AND HIS NAME ALSO ORDERED STRICKEN FROM
THE ROLL OF ATTORNEYS.

Respondent Ramon E. Galang further declared that he never went to the Office of the Philippine
Veterans to follow up his educational benefits and claimed that he does not even know the location of Makalintal, C.J., Castro, Fernando, Barredo, Esguerra, Muñoz Palma and Aquino, JJ., concur.
the said office. He does not also know whether beneficiaries of the G.I. Bill of Rights educational
benefits are required to go to the Philippine Veterans Board every semester to submit their ratings (Vol. Teehankee, J., concurs in the result.
V, p. 86, rec.). But respondent Galang admits that he had gone to the GSIS and City Court of Manila,
although he insists that he never bothered to take a look at the neighboring buildings (Vol. V, pp. 93-
94, rec.). The huge and imposing Philippine Veterans Building is beside the GSIS building and is Antonio, J., is on official leave.
obliquely across the City Court building.
Concepcion and Martin, JJ., took no part.
2. Respondent Lanuevo stated that as an investigator in the Philippine Veterans Board, he investigated
claims for the several benefits given to veterans like educational benefits and disability benefits; that he
does not remember, however, whether in the course of his duties as veterans investigator, he came
across the application of Ramon E. Galang for educational benefits; and that he does not know the
father of Mr. Ramon E. Galang and has never met him (Vol. VII, pp. 28, 49, rec.).

3. Respondent Lanuevo, as a member of the USAFEE, belonged to the 91st Infantry operating at
Zambales and then Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija, shortly before the war (Vol. VII, pp. 48-49, rec.). Later
he joined the guerrilla movement in Samar.

He used to be a member of the Philippine Veterans Legion especially while working with the Philippine
Veterans Board(Vol. VII, p. 49, rec.).

He does not know the Banal Regiment of the guerrillas, to which Galang's father belonged. During the
Japanese occupation, his guerrilla outfit was operating in Samar only and he had no communications
with other guerrilla organization in other parts of the country.
Republic of the Philippines Both the prosecution and the defense produced an abundance of evidence, oral and
SUPREME COURT documentary, the presentation of which consumed considerable of the court's time.
Manila
UNDISPUTED FACTS
EN BANC
There is no question whatsoever as to the following facts which are not disputed either by
G.R. No. 31012 September 10, 1932 the prosecution or by the defense:

THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS, plaintiff-appellee, The accused Estela Romualdez was appointed upon the recommendation of Justice
vs. Norberto Romualdez of the Supreme Court of the Philippine Islands as his secretary on
ESTELA ROMUALDEZ and LUIS MABUNAY, defendants-appellants. November 1, 1921, and continued as such until September 15, 1928.

Courtney Whitney, Vicente Nepomuceno and Julio Llorente for appellant Romualdez. The accused Luis Mabunay was one of the candidates duly admitted to the bar
Vicente J. Francisco and Claro M. Recto for appellant Mabunay. examinations held in 1926.
Attorney-General Jaranilla for appellee.
The clerk of the Supreme Court, Mr. Vicente Albert, who was appointed to that office on July
VICKERS, J.: 11, 1912, acts every year as the secretary ex oficio of the examination committee for
admission to the bar.
This is an appeal from the following decision of the Honorable E. P. Revilla, Judge of the Court of First
Instance of Manila: The Supreme Court of the Philippine Islands designated Justice Norberto Romualdez as
chairman of the examination committee for admission to the bar in the year 1926, and upon
recommendation of Clerk Vicente Albert, he appointed the following as members of the
Estela Romualdez and Luis Mabunay are charged with the crime of falsification of public examination committee, with their respective subjects: Attorney Francisco Ortigas, Civil
and official documents, committed, according to the information, as follows: Law; Judge Vicente Nepomuceno, Mercantile Law; Attorney Godofredo Reyes, Criminal
Law; Judge Jose Abreu, Remedial Law; Attorney C. A. DeWitt, International Law; Attorney-
That in or about the month of February, 1927, in the City of Manila, Philippine General Delfin Jaranilla, Political Law; and Attorney Carlos Ledesma, Legal Ethics.
Islands, the accused Estela Romualdez, who, by appointment of the Supreme
Court of the Philippine Islands, was then taking part in the discharge of public Upon recommendation also of clerk of court Mr. Vicente Albert, a committee of correctors
functions as secretary to the Honorable Norberto Romualdez, one of the Justices was appointed, composed of the following attorneys: Amado del Rosario, Assistant Director
of the Supreme Court, and by reason of said duty had under her care the of Civil Service, and Jeronimo Samson, deputy clerk of the Supreme Court, as correctors in
compositions and other papers and documents having reference to the Civil Law; Rafael Amparo, Secretary of Justice Johnson, and Fulgencio Vega, Secretary of
examinations for the admission of candidates to the bar held in the months of Justice Malcolm, as correctors in Mercantile Law; Cecilio Apostol, Assistant City Fiscal, and
August and September, 1926, which were then kept in the archives of the said Remo, of the Bureau of Audits, as correctors in Penal Law; Marciano Guevara, of the
court, confabulating with her coaccused, Luis Mabunay, and acting in common Bureau of Audits and Alfonso Felix, Assistant City Fiscal, as correctors in Remedial law;
accord with him, who was then one of the candidates who took the said Bar Juan Lantin, of the Executive Bureau, and the accused Estela Romualdez, as correctors in
Examinations, willfully, illegally, and criminally extracted from the said archives of Political Law; Rufino Luna, of the Executive Bureau, and Zoilo Castrillo, of the Bureau of
the Supreme Court certain public and official documents, to wit: the Lands, as correctors in International Law; and Anatalio Mañalac, of the Bureau of Lands,
compositions, which were written, prepared and submitted by the accused, Luis and Jeronimo Samson as correctors in Legal Ethics. On account of illness, Mr. Remo was
Mabunay in that examination. Once in possession of the same, the said accused substituted by Jeronimo Samson as corrector in Penal Law. All said correctors were
Estela Romualdez and Luis Mabunay, conspiring together and acting in common designated by clerk of court Albert with the approval of the chairman of the examination
accord, willfully, illegally, and criminally erased the grade of fifty-eight (58%) committee.
given by the correctors Alfonso Felix and M. Guevara to the composition in
Remedial Law, which was written and prepared by the accused Luis Mabunay,
and in its place wrote sixty-four (64%); and also erased the grade of sixty-three The work of the members of the examination committee was limited to the preparation of the
(63%) given by correctors Jeronimo Samson and Amado del Rosario to the questions in their respective subjects and of a memorandum or note of the articles, legal
composition in Civil Law written and prepared by the said Luis Mabunay, and in provisions and jurisprudence showing the sources from which the questions were taken.
its place wrote seventy-three (73%), and by means of these alterations the said The work of reviewing and grading the compositions was entrusted to the correctors
accused Estela Romualdez and Luis Mabunay were able to change the relative designated for each subject. Each corrector was furnished with this note or memorandum,
merits of those compositions, thereby attributing to the said correctors, and a set of rules, patterned after those of the Civil Service, was prepared by corrector
statements and declarations contrary to what they really made, and the accused Amado del Rosario to guide the correctors in grading the examination papers.
Estela Romualdez and Luis Mabunay thus succeeded by means of falsifications
made by them in the aforesaid public and official documents in making it appear
that Luis Mabunay obtained the general average required by the rules of the The correctors worked separately in reviewing and grading the papers on the subject
Supreme Court, and in securing the latter's admission to the practice of law, as in assigned to them, noting the grades given to each answer, not on the composition, but in a
fact he was admitted, to the great prejudice of the public. separate note book, which were later checked with the grades given by the other corrector
in the same subject, for the purpose of determining the general average to be given to the
composition.
Upon arraignment the accused pleaded not guilty.
The report of the examination committee on the final result of the bar examination for the 1926 and that she had never corrected any composition after the name of the
year 1926 was submitted, under date of March 2, 1927, to the Supreme Court and was corresponding candidate was identified (pages 782, 783, s. n.). She denied having known
published on the fifth of said month. In the list of successful candidates (Exhibit C-5) there Luis Mabunay, and said that the first time she saw him was on the first day of the trial of this
appeared the name of candidate Luis Mabunay with a general average of 75%. The grades case (page 783, s. n.).
of Mabunay in each subject, according to the list Exhibit C-2, which was prepared after the
publication of the result of the examination, are: 73 in Civil Law, 77 in Mercantile Law, 69 in
Penal Law, 76 in Political Law, 86 in International Law, 64 in Remedial Law, 80 in Legal Contention of the Prosecuting Attorney
Ethics and Practical Exercises. However, a later revision of the composition of Luis
Mabunay showed that the grades of seventy-three (73 in Civil Law (Exhibit B-1), and sixty- The contention of the prosecuting attorney with respect to the accused Estela Romualdez
four (64) in Remedial Law (Exhibit B-2) had been written on the first page of said may be summarized in two following propositions: 1st — that Justice Romualdez, as
compositions after striking out the grades of sixty-three (63) therefore given to the chairman of the examination committee, did not have authority to delegate to his secretary,
composition in Civil Law, Exhibit B-1, and fifty-eight (58) theretofore given to the the accused Estela Romualdez, the power to revise compositions in subjects in which she
composition in Remedial Law, Exhibit B-2. The investigation of this irregularity by the City was not a corrector and which had already been graded by the other correctors, and much
Fiscal of Manila led to the filing of the information in this case. less the power to alter or change the grades given to and written on said compositions; 2nd
— that granting that the chairman of the examination committee had such authority, the
Admission of the accused Estela Romualdez accused Estela Romualdez did not exercise the same in the manner prescribed by said
chairman, namely, in order to do justice to the compositions and on the condition that the
revision and the changes of grades should be made before the names of the candidates, to
Before the prosecuting attorney had finished presenting his evidence tending to show the whom the compositions belonged, were known.
identity of the person who altered the grades appearing on the first pages of the
compositions Exhibits-B-1 and B-2, the accused Estela Romualdez spontaneously and with
the conformity of her attorneys made of record an admission as follows (p. 395, s. n.): In support of the first proposition, the prosecuting attorneys maintains that Justice
Romualdez was appointed by the Supreme Court as chairman of the bar examination
committee of the year 1926, so that he would supervise the examinations in accordance
"In Exhibit B-1 the words seventy-three and the figures 73% inclosed in with law and the rules, and that precisely, in accordance with the rules the chairman can not
parenthesis are in my regular handwriting, and in Exhibit B-2 the words sixty-four by himself exercise the individual powers of the committee, among which were the powers
and the figures 64% inclosed in parenthesis appearing in said composition are to review, and to change or alter the grades given to the compositions.
also in my regular handwriting."
As to the second proposition, the prosecuting attorney maintains that the evidence adduced
Authority of the accused Estela Romualdez to alter or change the grades by the prosecution, specially the testimony of the Deputy Clerk Samson, shows that the
accused Estela Romualdez made the changes in the grades given by the correctors to
compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2, in order to favor the accused Luis Mabunay, to whom
In view of the admission made by the accused Estela Romualdez that she was the person she knew said compositions belonged, thus violating the conditions imposed upon her by
who wrote on the compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2 the words and figures alleged to have the chairman of the examination committee when she was given said authority.
been falsified, it now appears that the burden of establishing the authority under which said
changes and alterations were made is on the accused. On this point the evidence for the
defense tended to show that the accused Estela Romualdez, both in her capacity as private As to the accused Luis Mabunay, the prosecuting attorney also maintains that the evidence
secretary of the chairman of the examination committee and as corrector and at the same for the prosecution shows that he was in connivance with the accused Estela Romualdez in
time supervisor of the correctors, was authorized by said chairman to revise the the alteration by the latter of his grades in Civil Law and Remedial Law for the purpose of
compositions already reviewed by the other correctors and to change the grades given by raising to 75% the general average of 72.8 which he had obtained.
them.
Theory of the Defense
Justice Romualdez, testifying as a witness for the defense, said that he considered the
accused Estela Romualdez and Deputy Clerk Samson as supervisors of the correctors; and
explaining the powers of the former he said (page 721, s. n.): In reply to the contention of the prosecuting attorney, the defense argues that the power of
supervision given by Justice Romualdez to his secretary, the accused Estela Romualdez, is
not contrary to law, rules or precedents. This assertion is based on the testimony of said
"As such supervisor I think there was on occasion when I gave her to understand Justice that the appointment of a committee of attorneys in accordance with section 2 of the
that in order to do justice to the compositions, she could review the compositions rules had not been followed by the Supreme Court for a number of years prior to 1926, and
already graded by the other correctors; provided, I want to add, that the new that when said court designated Justice Romualdez as chairman of the examination
revision was done in order to do justice to the compositions and before the committee without designating the examiners, it left that function to said chairman, and
names of the candidates were known." conferred upon him ample powers to do what in his judgment was most in line with justice
and the law, and that no Court of First Instance has jurisdiction to determine the propriety or
illegality of the procedure employed by the chairman of the examination committee, or of the
Referring to the alterations made by the accused Estela Romualdez to the grades given by powers conferred by him upon his secretary, inasmuch as said chairman was responsible
the corresponding correctors to compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2, this same witness only to the Supreme Court for his acts.
testified that said alterations were made within the limits of the powers he had given to said
accused (pages 723, 726, s. n.).
The defense also claims that the accused Estela Romualdez could not have known to
whom compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2 belonged at the time of making the alteration of
For her part the accused Estela Romualdez, testifying as a witness in her own behalf, said the grades appearing on the first pages thereof, because, according to the testimony of said
that the chairman of the examining committee, gave her to understand that she "was accused, corroborated by that of Catalina Pons, who was one of those who helped in the
authorized to correct any composition in any subject" in the bar examinations of the year
preparation of the list of candidates Exhibit C-1, the envelopes containing the names and supervisor (pages 824- 832, s. n.). She also said, that, as corrector, she had instructions to
the identification numbers of the candidates were opened just one day before the put her initials when writing the original grade on any composition, but as supervisor "she
publication of the result of the examination, and that in order to finish this work and to place was under no obligation" to put her initials (page 830, s. n.) and that the chairman of the
the names of the candidates on said list, they had to work continuously from 8 o'clock in the examination committee "has not gone into such minor details" (page 831, s. n.). Upon being
morning until 8 o'clock in the evening on the day prior to the publication of the result of the questioned by the fiscal as to why she wrote the altered grade on composition Exhibit B-2
examinations. on the same line and immediately before the initials of the correctors she said: "Because on
that occasion it pleased me to do so" (page 836, s. n.). Neither does the accused remember
whether or not she exercised her supervisory authority with respect to the other five
Considerations on the evidence and contentions of both parties compositions forming part of those marked as Exhibits B-1 and B-2 (page 840, s. n.); and
when asked by the fiscal for an explanation as to why the increase given by her to the
Upon an examination of the testimony of Justice Romualdez, as a witness for the defense, grades originally given to said compositions had the effect of raising the general average of
the court finds that the accused Estela Romualdez, as secretary of the chairman of the the compositions of the same candidate to 75%, the accused answered that "the fiscal
examination committee, and Jeronimo Samson, as deputy clerk of the Supreme Court were ought to know that in this life there are happy coincidences" (page 848, s. n.). With these
considered by said chairman not only as correctors in the subjects assigned to them but answers and others appearing in her testimony, the accused instead of giving a satisfactory
also as supervisors of the correctors (page 721, s. n.), both of them with equal powers and explanation of her conduct, has demonstrated that with the encouragement given by Justice
authority so that neither could consider himself superior to the other (page 727, s. n.). It Romualdez to the effect that the new revision of the compositions was left to her discretion
appears, however, that while the chairman of the committee gave his secretary, the accused (page 780, s. n.) she assumed that the powers exercised by her in the bar examinations of
Estela Romualdez, to understand that she "was authorized to revise the compositions 1926 were such that she could revise any composition in any subject already graded and
already graded by the other correctors provided the new revisions were made for the increase or decrease the grades given by the correctors; in other words, that she could, at
purpose of doing justice to the compositions and that the same were mad before the names her pleasure, do or undo the work done by the correctors without the necessity of
of the candidates were known" (pages 721, 722, s. n.), he did not do the same with respect accounting to anybody for it (page 834, s. n.), or of keeping a note or memorandum of the
to Deputy Clerk Jeronimo Samson, to whom he said nothing about this matter (page 768, s. compositions so revised and the alteration of the grades.
n.). It also appears that the accused Estela Romualdez had never informed the chairman of
the committee about the corrections or alterations made by her in compositions Exhibits B-1 The evidence, however, shows that Justice Romualdez himself in reviewing, in his capacity
and B-2; neither did the latter examine said compositions to determine whether or not their as chairman of the examination committee, the compositions of the candidates who filed
merits justified the changes so made, and he only knew of said changes upon the filing of motions for reconsideration of the grades given them, after the publication of the result of
the information against his said secretary (page 728, s. n.). For her part, she made no report the examinations, performed his work with such diligence and zeal that he noted in a
to the chairman of the examination committee of any error or injustice committed by any memorandum book (Exhibit F) not only the grades given to each answer of the candidate,
corrector, and she only told him during the progress of the work of grading the papers that but also the total grade obtained by the candidate in the revision, together with such other
they were being graded very strictly and that "she feared that some injustice might be data which would explain the increase of the grades of this or that candidate.
committed" (page 729, s. n.), and for that reason Justice Romualdez told his secretary,
Estela Romualdez, that "should a case of the kind come to her knowledge, she should take
special notice of the same in order to do justice," that is to say, if any person should bring to The court is loath to believe that Justice Romualdez had given his secretary to understand
her attention any such case in which, in her opinion, some injustice had been committed, that she had such unlimited powers, or that the Supreme Court in designating said Justice
she was authorized to put things in order (page 781, s. n.), and the revision in such cases as chairman of the bar examination committee of the year 1926, authorizing him to confer
was left to the judgment of his secretary (page 780, s. n.). such powers upon his secretary, because it is an undisputed fact that his designation was
made so that he should conduct the examinations in accordance with law and the rules.
The powers conferred in the manner above stated, by Justice Romualdez as chairman of
the examination committee upon his secretary, Estela Romualdez, gave her so ample a But, even granting that when the accused Estela Romualdez altered the grades given by
discretionary power of supervision that in its exercise she should act independently, not only the correctors to compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2 she acted in the exercise of the powers
of the correctors and of her cosupervisor Jeronimo Samson, but also of the examination conferred upon her by the chairman of the examination committee, is there any ground in
committee. Now, granting that Justice Romualdez, as a chairman of the committee support of her claim that she made those alterations only to do justice to the compositions,
appointed by the Supreme Court to conduct the bar examinations of 1926, was authorized and without knowing the name of the candidate to whom they belonged?
to confer such power of supervision upon his secretary Estela Romualdez, in what manner
did she exercise that power when she made the changes in the compositions in question?
Without giving any weight to the testimony of the witness for the prosecution, Juan Villaflor,
which, according to the defense is not worthy of credit because of the contradictions and
The accused Estela Romualdez who, according to her own admission, made the alterations inconsistencies therein noted, the record contains other evidence establishing certain facts
of the grades originally given by the correctors to compositions of Exhibits B-1 and B-2, is from which such knowledge can be inferred.
the only person who could give an account of and explain the circumstances under which
said alterations were made. But said accused, testifying as a witness in her own behalf, was
not able to explain how and under what circumstances she made those alterations. When It has been proved that after the revision and grading of all the compositions numbering
pressed by the fiscal during the cross-examination to state the circumstances under which over 8,000, a list, Exhibit C-1, was prepared in pencil. This list was prepared with the
she came across those compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2 the accused Estela Romualdez intervention of the said Jeronimo Samson and Josephine Stevens, assisted by Catalina
said: "If I were to make any statement with reference to the circumstances under which I Pons, Juan Villaflor and the accused Estela Romualdez. However, before the preparation of
came across these compositions, you would compel me to tell a lie, because I do not really this list, sometime during the first day of February, 1927, the sealed envelopes containing
remember" (page 823, s. n.). Neither does the accused remember why she did not put her the identification numbers attached to each composition were opened. Said numbers were
initials under or at the side of those alterations she made on compositions Exhibits B-1 and written either on the upper part of each envelope or on the first page of the composition, and
B-2, limiting herself to say, when she saw the other compositions (Exhibits 3-1, X, X-1 and that work lasted several days (pages 162, 163, s. n.). In the list Exhibit C-1 the numbers of
X-2) bearing her initials which were exhibited to her by the fiscal, that she placed her initials the candidates contained in the envelopes attached to the compositions were first written
on said compositions because she graded them as corrector, and she did not put her initials (page 166, s. n.), and then the grades in each subject, followed by the general average
on compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2 because she revised them in her capacity as (pages 71, 184, s. n.), leaving in the blank the space intended for the names (page 166, s.
n.). Deputy Clerk Samson wrote on an adding machine the grades in each composition as that said alterations were made after the grades written by the correctors had been noted on
they were read out by one of the helpers, and then the corresponding general average as the adding machine in roll Exhibit C-6 and on the list Exhibit C-1 which were prepared
computed by him (page 71, s. n.), and, at the same time, Josephine Stevens wrote said simultaneously; third, that after said alterations had been made, and in order that the grades
grades in the space corresponding to each subject (page 188, s. n.). The roll of paper used so altered should agree with the grades already written on the list Exhibit C-1, the grades in
by Deputy Clerk Samson on the adding machine was presented as Exhibit C-6. Civil Law and Remedial Law were erased with rubber, and in place thereof were written the
grades now appearing in said compositions. The accused Estela Romualdez having
admitted that she was the author of such alterations, the only logical inference from her
After the list Exhibit C-1 containing the grades in each subject and the general average of admission and the facts above set out, is that she was also the person who erased not only
each candidate, who was theretofore known by his identification number only, was the grades originally written by the correctors on the compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2 but
prepared, the envelopes containing the names corresponding to the identification numbers also those appearing in the columns corresponding to Civil Law and Remedial Law on the
written on said list were taken from the safe of the office of the clerk, and the names of the list Exhibit C-1, and the same person who wrote the grades now appearing in said columns,
candidates were inserted in said list by those who assisted in the preparation thereof (pages and which agree with those written by her on compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2. Now, if the
166, 167, s. n.) among whom was the accused Estela Romualdez, who admitted, upon accused Estela Romualdez erased in the manner stated the grades originally written, and
cross-examination, having written many of the names appearing on several pages of said substituted for them the grades now appearing in said compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2 as
list (pages 859-861, s. n.). After said list Exhibit C-1 was prepared the examination well as in the columns corresponding to Civil Law and Remedial Law in the list Exhibit C-1, it
committee submitted to the Supreme Court a report recommending the admission to the bar cannot be doubted that in making such erasures and alterations she not only acted with the
and not only for those candidates with a general average of 75% or more, but also of those intent of concealing her identity, but she also knew the number and the name of the
who had obtained a general average of 70 or more but below 75%, and said automatic candidate to whom said composition belonged, because at that time the numbers and the
increase was ordered noted on said list Exhibit C-1. However, this recommendation was not names of the candidates were already written on the list Exhibit C-1, and that list was kept in
approved by the Supreme Court on the ground that said automatic increase was arbitrary the office of Justice Romualdez (page 83, s. n.), were she had complete and absolute
(pages 73, 74, s. n.), and for that reason the clerk of court, Mr. Albert, instructed his deputy, control as private secretary and supervisor of the examinations.
Mr. Samson, to prepare another list containing only the names of the candidates who had
originally obtained a general average of 75% without having obtained less than 60% in any
subject, and in pursuance thereof the typewritten list Exhibit C-5 was prepared (page 77, s. Participation of the accused Luis Mabunay
n.), which was approved by the Supreme Court and published on March 5, 1927. In this list
Luis Mabunay is included with an average of 75%.
Discarding the testimony of witness Juan Villaflor in which he says that one Luis Mabunay
called up the accused Estela Romualdez on the telephone a few days before the publication
Eight or ten days after the publication of the result of the examinations the list Exhibit C-2 of the results of the examinations, there is, indeed, no direct proof in the record showing the
was prepared in the same form as Exhibit C-1 taking the grades directly from the participation of the accused Luis Mabunay. However, there is other evidence for the
compositions; while one of the helpers read them, Deputy Clerk Samson listed them on the prosecution establishing certain facts which show strong indications that he operated in the
adding machine and computed the general average of each candidate. The roll of paper act before or at the time of its execution by his coaccused. It has been proved beyond a
used by Deputy Samson on this occasion was also presented and marked as Exhibit C-7. reasonable doubt that the accused Luis Mabunay was one of the candidates who took the
bar examinations in 1926; that the general average obtained by him, according to the
computation appearing on the roll Exhibit C-6 of the adding machine and that originally
Both rolls, Exhibits C-6 and C-7, as well as the lists Exhibits C-1 and C-2, were kept in the written in the list Exhibit C-1 was 72.8%; that after the Supreme Court denied the
office of Justice Romualdez and were only taken out when the investigation of the recommendation of the examination committee that all grades from and between 70% and
irregularities in the examinations of 1926 was commenced (page 81, s. n.). And only in the 75% be automatically raised to 75%, his name, nevertheless, appeared in the list of
course of that investigation it was discovered that the grades of candidate Luis Mabunay, successful candidates which was published on March 5, 1927 (Exhibit C-5), and that said
identified with number 898 in roll Exhibit C-6 and in the list Exhibit C-1, which had been inclusion was due to the increase of these grades in Civil Law (Exhibit B-1) and Remedial
prepared simultaneously, did not agree, because, while roll Exhibit C-6 shows that the Law (Exhibit B-2), which was made by his coaccused by erasing and altering the grades
grade in Civil Law of candidate No. 898 is 63, the list Exhibit C-1 shows that the grade of the theretofore given by the correctors.
same candidate is 73; and while roll Exhibit C-6 shows that the grade of candidate No. 898
was 58 (in Remedial Law), his grade in the list Exhibit C-1 is 64 (in the same subject), a
difference also being noted between the general average of candidate No. 898 in Exhibit C- It is true that the accused Estela Romualdez, in her desire to show that she had no motive
6, which is 72.8%, and his general average on Exhibit C-1, which is 75% (pages 73, 74, s. whatsoever for favoring his coaccused Luis Mabunay, testified that she did not know him
n.). This discovery led to the revision of the compositions of Luis Mabunay in the and that the first time she saw him was on the first day of the trial of this case. However, in
examinations of 1926, which were united to his personal record (Exhibit B), which showed view of her inability to explain why precisely the compositions of said Luis Mabunay had
that the grades given to, and written by the respective correctors on the compositions of been benefited by the revision, and in view of the admission of Justice Romualdez that the
said candidate in Civil Law Exhibit B-1 and Remedial Law Exhibit B-2 had been altered, and power to revise conferred upon Estela Romualdez could be exercised by her in the
further, that the grades that appeared on said compositions before the alterations were compositions already graded by the correctors in all cases of injustice which came to her
identical with those that appeared on the roll, Exhibit C-6. An ocular inspection of page 29 of knowledge, or which might be brought to her attention (page 781, s. n.), her testimony lacks
said Exhibit C-1 shows at first glance that the numbers 73, 64, and 75 in the columns foundation, because it is absurd to believe that her revision of the compositions of her
corresponding to Civil Law, Remedial Law and General Average, respectively, were written coaccused Luis Mabunay was due only and solely to a happy coincidence.
after erasing with rubber what was there originally written. It may also be noted, upon an
examination of the alterations appearing on the first pages of compositions Exhibits B-1 and
B-2, that the grades originally written by the correctors, authenticated by their initials, had Furthermore, the accused Mabunay made no effort to contradict the evidence for the
been stricken out in such a way that it is difficult to make out said original grades, leaving, prosecution with reference to his withdrawal of the amount of P600 from his savings account
however, intact, the initials of the correctors. in the Philippine Trust Company on the second day of March, 1927, or three days before the
publication of the result of the examinations (Exhibit I) which, when correlated with the
deposit of the sum of P400 made by the accused Estela Romualdez in her current account
From these facts it is inferred: First, that the person who erased and altered the grades (Exhibit H) with the Bank of the Philippine Islands on the seventh day of said March, 1927,
written by the correctors on the first pages of compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2 wished to may, perhaps, give an explanation of the motive of said accused for increasing the grades
make it appear that said alterations had been made by the correctors themselves; second, of Mabunay with just the necessary points to reach the lowest passing general average. It is
also true that Estela Romualdez testified that said amount had been sent to her by her III. It also erred in concluding that the accused Estela Romualdez did not exercise the
cousin named Prisca Magpayo Redona from the province for the purchase of merchandise powers conferred upon her by the chairman of the bar examination committee of 1926,
for sale at the latter's store (page 791, s. n.), but the testimony in that respect was not within the limits fixed by said chairman, to wit: that the new revision and grading of the
corroborated either by her said cousin, or by any other persons mentioned by her as the compositions be made in order to do justice thereto, and before the names of the
bearers of said amount, or by the corresponding check or postal money order, as she had corresponding candidates were known.
done when referring other deposits in the bank.
IV. It likewise erred in concluding that the accused Estela Romualdez changed the general
Conclusion average and the grades of candidate Luis Mabunay in Civil Law and Remedial law on the
list Exhibit C-1.
In view of the foregoing considerations, the court finds that the allegations of the information
are sufficiently supported by the evidence and that the accused, Estela Romualdez and Luis V. The lower court erred in not admitting the expert testimony of Wm. J. Rhode, Felicisimo
Mabunay are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt; the former as principal and the latter as Feria, and Claro M. Recto, as well as Exhibits 26 and 27, containing the opinion of said
accomplice, of the crime of falsification of official documents with which they are charged lawyers as to the grades to which said compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2 were justly
and, therefore, a judgment is rendered sentencing Estela Romualdez, who was a entitled.
Government employee at the time of the commission of the crime, to suffer, in accordance
with article 300 of the Penal Code, as amended by section 1 of Act No. 2712, six years and
one day of prision mayor with the accessory penalties of the law, to pay a fine of 1,000 VI. It also erred in not concluding that Jeronimo Samson used the same powers exercised
pesetas, without subsidiary imprisonment in view of the nature of the penalty, and also to by the accused in the bar examination of 1926.
suffer the penalty of perpetual disqualification from public office; and her coaccused Luis
Mabunay, who was a private individual with respect to said examination, to suffer, under the VII. Granting that the accused Estela Romualdez knew that compositions Exhibits B-1 and
provisions of article 301 as amended by section 2 of Act No. 2712 and article 67 of the B-2 belonged to her coaccused Luis Mabunay when she reviewed and regraded them, the
Penal Code, the penalty of four months and one day of arresto mayor, with the accessory court erred in concluding that said act constitutes the offense charged in the information.
penalties of the law, and to pay a fine of 250 pesetas, with subsidiary imprisonment in case
of insolvency, and each to pay one-half part of the costs.
VIII. Granting that Justice Romualdez, as chairman of the bar examination committee of
1926, was not authorized by the Supreme Court to confer upon Estela Romualdez the
The appellant Estela Romualdez through her attorneys makes the following assignments of error: powers which she exercised in that examination, the court erred in concluding that she
altered the grades of said compositions willfully and feloniously.
I. The trial court erred in finding the accused, Estela Romualdez, guilty of the crime of
"falsification of public and official documents" and in sentencing her to suffer imprisonment IX. The lower court also erred in concluding that Estela Romualdez intended to conceal her
without due process of law, contrary to section 3, Act of Congress of August 29, 1916, identity when she revised and regraded compositions Exhibits B-1 and B-2.
entitled "An Act to Declare the Purpose of the People of the United States as to the future
Political Status of the People of the Philippine Islands, and to Provide a More Autonomous
Government for those Islands". X. It also erred in concluding that the accused Estela Romualdez, in exercising her powers
as supervisor of the correctors in said bar examinations, revised compositions Exhibits B-1
and B-2 only, in order to regrade them.
II. The trial court erred in not finding, that the accused, Estela Romualdez, was fully
authorized to make the alterations she in fact made on the composition papers of Luis
Mabunay, Exhibits B-1 and B-2 of the Government, and in denying full credit to the XI. It also erred in suggesting that her motive, in revising and regrading said compositions
uncontradicted testimony of Mr. Justice Norberto Romualdez, chairman of the bar Exhibits B-1 and B-2, was the fact that she had received from her coaccused Luis Mabunay
examining committee for the year 1926, concerning the authority granted her. the sum of P400.

III. The trial court erred in failing to extend to the accused Estela Romualdez a fair and XII. Granting that the accused Estela Romualdez committed the offense of falsification with
impartial trial. which she is charged, the lower court erred in concluding that Luis Mabunay participated in
its commission.

The attorneys for the appellant Luis Mabunay allege that the trial court committed the following errors:
In addition to the usual brief for each of the accused, the attorneys for the appellants filed a joint
memorandum on July 10, 1929. The Attorney-General filed a brief on behalf of the People of the
I. The trial court erred in not crediting the uncontradicted testimony of Justice Romualdez Philippine Islands and a reply to the memorandum for the defense.
with reference to his authority as chairman of the bar examination committee of the year
1926, to confer upon the accused Estela Romualdez, the powers he in fact conferred upon
her, in connection with said examination. The court at that time consisted of nine members, one of whom, Justice Romualdez, was disqualified
to sit in this case. Upon a consideration of the case on its merits, four justices were in favor of affirming
the decision of the trial court and the same number were in favor of acquitting the defendants. The
II. It also erred in not crediting the uncontradicted testimony of Justice Romualdez as to the court being unable to reach a decision in the usual course, an attempt was made on February 11, 1930
fact that he, as chairman of the bar examination committee of 1926, really and truly to break the deadlock, as is evidenced by the following resolution:
conferred upon the accused Estela Romualdez the powers which she exercised in that
examination.
The court having under consideration again the case of People vs. Romualdez, et al., No.
31012, those participating being all the members of the court, except Mr. Justice
Romualdez, who was disqualified, it was moved that following precedents elsewhere,
particularly in the United States Supreme Court, to the effect that when there is an equal "falsification of public documents"; People vs. Castro and Doe, 54 Phil., 41, where the conviction of
division in the court and there is no prospect of a change in the vote the judgment appealed Castro for the falsification of his examination papers was affirmed.)
from stand affirmed, and in accordance with the action taken in the case of Nacionalista
Party vs.Municipal Board of Manila, No. 21265 — the judgment in the case at bar be
affirmed. Mr. Chief Justice Avanceña and Messrs. Justices Malcolm, Ostrand, and Johns In accordance with the established practice of the court to have one of its members each year make all
voted in favor of the motion. Messrs. Justices Johnson, Street, Villamor, and Villa-Real the necessary arrangements for the bar examination, the Chief Justice in 1926 designated Justice
voted against the motion. Mr. Justice Johnson based his dissent on the peculiar statutory Romualdez for that purpose, and in pursuance thereof he appointed one group of attorneys to prepare
provisions in force in the Philippine Islands. For want of a majority, the motion was lost. the questions and another group to grade the papers. If any of these attorneys were designated by the
clerk of the court, it was with the advice and consent and on the authority of Justice Romualdez.

The court thereupon directed that the clerk retain the record in the case until the further
order of the court. The phrase "falsification of a document" is not used in articles 300 and 301 of the Penal code in the
ordinary acceptation of the words. It has a technical meaning, and according to article 300 may be
committed in the following eight ways:
On January 12, 1931 Luis Mabunay filed a motion praying that the case against him be considered
separately and he be absolved from the complaint. This motion was denied by the court. He renewed
his motion on August 1, 1931. This motion was also denied on the ground that no severance had been 1. By counterfeiting or imitating any handwriting, signature, or rubric.
asked for in the lower court, and for the further reason that there was a prospect that the membership
of the court would soon be increased. 2. By causing it to appear that persons have participated in any act or proceeding when they
did not in fact so participate.
The membership of the court was finally increased to eleven, and due to the death or retirement of
three justices only six of the former members remained. On June 23, 1932 Courtney Whitney as 3. By attributing to persons who have participated in an act or proceeding statements other
attorney for Estela Romualdez filed a petition praying that this case be set for a rehearing before the than those in fact made by them.
court as newly constituted. This motion was granted. On July 2, 1932 he filed a motion for the
dismissal of the information, alleging that because of the inability of the court to reach a determination
from the facts as to the guilt or innocence of the defendant-appellant Estela Romualdez, she had been 4. By making untruthful statements in a narration of facts.
denied her right to a speedy trial. This motion was denied.
5. By altering true dates.
After a reargument of the case, the attorney for Estela Romualdez filed an additional memorandum, to
which the Attorney-General filed a reply.
6. By making any alteration or intercalation in a genuine document which changes its
meaning.
Under the first assignment of error, the attorneys for Estela Romualdez maintain that even if the lower
court's findings of fact be justified by the evidence of record, "they fail to sustain that any criminal
7. By issuing in authenticated form a document purporting to be a copy of an original
offense, recognized under the laws of the Philippine Islands, has been committed." They contend that
document when no such original exists, or by including in such a copy a statement contrary
the appointment of the committee of attorneys by Justice Romualdez to read and grade the
to, or different from, that of the genuine original.
examination papers was not warranted by law, and that therefore the alteration by the defendant Estela
Romualdez, under the circumstances alleged in the information, of the grades in question did not
constitute a crime. 8. By intercalating any instrument or note relative to the issuance thereof in a protocol,
registry or official book.
The testimony of Justice Romualdez, who was a witness for the defense, completely refutes this
contention. He testified that the bar examining committee was composed of two groups of attorneys: The acts of the accused are covered by paragraphs 2, 3, and 6. She made the alterations in the grades
Those that were appointed to prepare the questions, and those that were appointed to grade the in such a way as to make it appear that the "correctors" had participated therein, because she blotted
papers. He further testified that the court was informed of the way in which the examination was out the grades of the "correctors" and wrote new and increased grades opposite their initials, without
conducted and that it approved thereof. There were more than a thousand candidates and some eight indicating by her own initials that she had made the alterations. She in that way attributed to the
thousand papers. According to the contention of appellant's attorneys only the seven attorneys "correctors" statements other than those in fact made by them. Her only explanation of why she altered
appointed to prepare the questions or the court itself could lawfully grade these papers. Such a the grades in that way was that it pleased her to do so.
contention is clearly untenable. The attorneys that prepared the questions did not intervene in the
grading of the papers, but they prepared a key to the questions, which served the other group of
attorneys, the readers or "correctors", as a guide in grading the papers. The intervention of the A decision in point has just come to hand. It is reported in 180 N. E., 725, and is referred to in the
"correctors" was just as legal as that of the attorneys that prepared the questions, and the intervention American Bar Association Journal for August, 1932, p. 497. A bill was presented in the Massachusetts
of the two groups of attorneys was perfectly regular and valid. Senate prohibiting the marking of the examination papers of applicants for admission to the bar by any
person not a member of the board of bar examiners. The Senate wished to know whether such a bill, if
enacted, would be an unconstitutional interference with the functions of the Judicial Department, and
It is also contended that the examination papers which the defendant Estela Romualdez altered were asked the Justices of the Supreme Judicial Court for an advisory opinion. They replied that such a law
not public or official documents. That contention is likewise without merit. As stated by her attorneys, would be unconstitutional. In the course of the opinion they said: "If the judicial department decides
the examination of candidates for admission to the bar is a judicial function. It cannot therefore be that the marking of the written examinations may be performed by competent persons not members of
maintained with any show of reason that the papers submitted by the candidates in the course of the the board but acting under the direction of such members, that pertains directly to the ascertainment of
examination were not public and official documents, or that the alteration, under the circumstances the qualifications of applicants. It is a definite attribute of the judicial department and not an immaterial
alleged in the information, of the grades given to such papers by the "correctors" was not a crime. (In incident." It was also stated that the plan of employing assistants to aid the bar examiners in marking
re Del Rosario, 52 Phil., 399, where this court refers to the falsification of his examination papers as the papers had been approved by the Supreme Judicial Court.
In the second assignment of error, the attorney for Estela Romualdez maintains that the trial court Under the second assignment of error the attorney for Estela Romualdez also alleges that she freely
erred in not finding that she was fully authorized to make the alterations she in fact made on the and voluntarily admitted from the start of the trial of her case that the alterations had been made by
examination papers of Luis Mabunay, Exhibits B-1 and B-2, and in denying full credit to the her, and concludes therefrom that she acted in good faith. We cannot agree either with the statement
uncontradicted testimony of Justice Norberto Romualdez, chairman of the bar examining committee for of fact or the conclusion. The accused Estela Romualdez did not admit that the alterations were made
the year 1926, concerning the authority granted her. by her until after the prosecuting attorney had presented three hundred and fifty pages of testimony
and announced his readiness to prove by three handwriting experts that the alterations were in the
handwriting of the accused. The evidence shows that before the trial defendant's attorney from the
In the first place, we find it difficult to believe that Justice Romualdez ever gave the accused the fiscal's office a photograph that had been made for the purpose of comparing a specimen of
authority which she claims to have received; and in the second place, even if it be assumed that he defendant's handwriting and that of the altered grades. The fact that the defendant Estela Romualdez
gave her the alleged authority, she did not exercise it in accordance with the terms thereof. made the alterations under the circumstances which we have mentioned, when she already knew that
the papers belonged to Mabunay, disproves any contention that she acted in good faith.
The defense would have us believe that Justice Romualdez regarded his secretary, Estela Romualdez,
and the deputy clerk, Jeronimo Samson, who were themselves "correctors" as supervisors of the other In the case of the United States vs. Ballesteros (25 Phil., 634), this court said:
"correctors", and that he authorized Estela Romualdez to revise any grade to correct an injustice,
without consulting or notifying the other supervisor, Samson, or the "correctors' who had graded the
paper, without requiring her to initial the alteration, or to make any record thereof or any report to him When the unlawful acts charged against an accused are established by competent
or to anybody else. evidence, criminal intent may be and will be presumed, unless such intent is rebutted by the
introduction of evidence sufficient to overcome this presumption, and satisfactorily
disclosing the absence of such criminal intent.
Justice Romualdez was designated by the Chief Justice to conduct the examination in accordance with
the law and the Rules of Court. He himself had no such authority as he is alleged to have given his
secretary. He is presumed to have discharged his duties in accordance with the law, and it is The third assignment of error made by the appellant Estela Romualdez is that the trial court erred in
inconceivable that he would without any warrant of law give or attempt to give his secretary the failing to extend to her a fair and impartial trial. We shall not waste much time on this assignment of
unlimited authority which she claims to have received, thereby enabling her to alter at will any grade or error, which is utterly without merit. The record itself completely refutes any such contention. If the
any paper, without making any record thereof or any report to anybody. The mere statement of such a learned trial judge erred, it was in permitting the attorneys for the defendants too great latitude in
claim shows that it is preposterous. arguing their objections. Arguments four and five pages long were incorporated into the stenographic
record of the evidence. The record shows a most unjustifiable attack on the good faith of the fiscal and
a persistent effort to embarrass him in presenting his evidence against the accused.
No such authority was given to Samson, who according to Justice Romualdez was regarded by him as
a supervisor of equal rank with Estela Romualdez. Samson was never notified that he was regarded as
a supervisor, and he never acted in that capacity. The appellant Luis Mabunay makes twelve assignments of error. They are for the most part embraced
in the assignments of error of his coaccused which we have already considered. These remain only his
fifth, eleventh, and twelfth assignments of error. In his fifth assignment of error it is alleged that the
Let us notice how this unlimited authority is alleged to have been granted to the accused Estela lower court erred in not admitting the expert testimony of attorneys Wm. J. Rhode, Felicisimo Feria,
Romualdez. and Claro M. Recto, and in rejecting Exhibits 26 and 27, which contain the opinion of said attorneys as
to the correct grades which the examination papers Exhibits B-1 and B-2 deserved.
It was not in writing or evidenced by any memorandum. It was not even a positive statement. Justice
Romualdez testified that he believed that on a certain occasion he gave his secretary to understand The lower court sustained the objection to the admission of the testimony of these three attorneys on
that if a case should be brought to her attention she might revise any grade to prevent an injustice, so the ground that it was not the best evidence, and suggested that the defense might call the members
long as she did not know the name of the candidate to whom the paper belonged. When asked where of the examining committee that prepared the questions in Remedial Law and Civil Law and the key
she was when the pretended authority was given to her, the accused could not remember. thereto. The attorneys for the defense did not see fit to adopt the suggestion of the court. It is not true
therefore that the lower court deprived the accused of an opportunity of showing that the examination
There was according to the theory of the defense nothing to prevent Samson from revising the revision papers in question deserved the increased grades which the defendant Estela Romualdez gave them.
of Estela Romualdez, because she did not initial the changes made by her, and he was supposed to The attorneys that prepared the questions and the key to the answers were certainly the persons best
be a supervisor of equal rank. qualified to decide whether or not the questions were correctly answered. The opinion of other
attorneys, who had nothing to do with the examination, would only lead to confusion. We find no merit
in this assignment of error.
If it be admitted for the sake of argument that the accused Estela Romualdez was given the authority
which she claims to have received, nevertheless she was not authorized to change the grades now in
question, because when she made the changes she already knew that the papers belonged to her The eleventh assignment of error is that the trial court erred in insinuating that the motive of the
coaccused Luis Mabunay. The evidence fully sustaining that conclusion is carefully set forth by the trial accused Estela Romualdez in reviewing and regrading the examination papers Exhibits B-1 and B-2
court, and it is unnecessary for us to review it. The testimony of Justice Romualdez to the effect that was the fact that she had received four hundred pesos from her co-accused Luis Mabunay.
the accused acted within the authority granted her in changing the grades in question was a mere
expression of opinion. It was clearly inadmissible and not binding on the court. The accused Estela The twelfth assignment of error is that if it be assumed that the accused Estela Romualdez committed
Romualdez did not even attempt to explain under what circumstances she raised the grades of her the crime of falsification imputed to her in the information, the court erred in concluding that the
coaccused so as to enable him to obtain the necessary general average of 75 per cent. She did not accused Luis Mabunay participated in its commission.
confer with the "correctors" who had graded the papers in question. She di not attempt to explain how
she arrived at the increased grades, or how she came to revise the grades in question, how she
happened to pick these two papers out of eight thousand. She could not point to any other grades that For the sake of convenience we shall consider these two assignments of error together.
had been altered by her.
In the first place we should like to say that there is no evidence to show that Estela Romualdez ever
reviewed the examination papers of her coaccused. So far as the evidence shows, she merely raised
his grades in two subjects, thus giving him by "a happy coincidence", to use her own words, a passing The failure to produce evidence, in general, other than his own testimony, is open to
mark. She could not or would not enlighten the court as to why she raised the grades of Luis Mabunay inference against a party accused, with the same limitations applicable to civil parties. Here
so as to enable him to be admitted to the bar. As already stated, the record does not show that she the effect of the burden of proof has sometimes tended to confuse. It is true that the burden
raised the grades of any other candidate. is on the prosecution, and that the accused is not required by any rule of law to produce
evidence; but nevertheless he runs the risk of an inference from nonproduction. This
seeming paradox, which has been already sufficiently noticed in treating of the general
The evidence shows that Luis Mabunay had failed in two previous examinations, and that he failed in principle, has misled a few courts to deny that any inference may be drawn.
the examination in question, receiving a general average of only 72.8%. The bar examining committee
recommended that not only those having the required general average of 75 per cent be admitted, but
also that those who had received between 70 and 75 per cent. This is referred to in the record as "an The alterations in the grades made by Estela Romualdez were made for the sole use and benefit of her
automatic increase". It was not automatic but arbitrary, and was disapproved by the Supreme Court, coaccused Luis Mabunay. They were made willfully and illegally, and after the Supreme Court had
and the committee was directed to prepare a new list and to include therein only those who had rejected those candidates that had received less than 75 per cent. The alterations were therefore made
obtained a general average of 75 per cent. The name of Luis Mabunay was included in the new list after Mabunay had failed, and he withdrew the money after he had time to learn from his coaccused
submitted three days later, notwithstanding the fact that he had obtained a general average of only that he had failed. It was under those circumstances incumbent upon the accused Mabunay to present
72.8 per cent, precisely because Estela Romualdez had in the meantime raised the grades now in evidence to show for what purpose he withdrew the six hundred pesos from the bank. As this court
question so that he appeared to have obtained the general average required for admission to the bar. said in the case of Worcester vs. Ocampo (22 Phil., 42):

The evidence shows that on March 2, 1927 Luis Mabunay withdrew P600 from the Philippine Trust When the circumstances in proof tend to fix the liability on a party who has it in his power to
Co., and that on March 7, 1927 Estela Romualdez deposited P510 in the Bank of the Philippine offer evidence of all the facts as they existed and rebut the inferences which the
Islands. Luis Mabunay did not testify, and he did not present any evidence to show for what purpose circumstances in proof tend to establish, and he fails to offer such proof, the natural
he withdrew P600 from the bank immediately after the first list was disapproved. conclusion is that the proof, if produced, instead of rebutting would support the inferences
against him, and the court is justified in acting upon that conclusion.
In the case of United States vs. Tria (17 Phil., 303, 307), Justice Moreland speaking for the court said:
The case of In re Del Rosario (52 Phil., 399), is directly on point. Felipe del Rosario failed for the third
time in the bar examination of 1926. He then filed a motion for the revision of his grades, based on an
An accused person sometimes owes a duty to himself if not to the State. If he does not alleged mistake in computation. This motion was granted, and he was admitted to the bar. It was
perform that duty he may not always expect the State to perform it for him. If he fails to meet subsequently found that alterations had been made in his examination papers, and he and Juan
the obligation which he owes to himself, when to meet it is the easiest of easy things, he is Villaflor were prosecuted for the falsification of a public document. Villaflor assumed full responsibility
hardy indeed if he demand and expect the same full and wide consideration which the State for the commission of the crime, and testified that Del Rosario did not know anything about the making
voluntarily gives to those who by reasonable effort seek to help themselves. This is of the alterations. The trial court acquitted Del Rosario, but upon a view of the case for the purpose of
particularly so when he not only declines to help himself but actively conceals from the State taking disciplinary actin against him Justice Malcolm, speaking for the court in banc, said:
the very means by which it may assist him.

It is asking a great deal of the members of the court to have them believe that Felipe del
In the famous case of the Commonwealth vs. Webster (5 Cushing, 295, 316), Chief Justice Shaw laid Rosario was totally unaware of the illegal machinations culminating in the falsification of
down the following rule: public documents, of which he was the sole beneficiary.

When pretty stringent proof of circumstances is produced, tending to support the charge, The attorney's certificate of Felipe del Rosario was cancelled.
and it is apparent that the accused is so situated that he could offer evidence of all the facts
and circumstances as they existed, and show, if such was the truth, that the suspicious
circumstances can be accounted for consistency with his innocence, and he fails to offer In the case of People vs. Bella Bautista (53 Phil., 158), the accused was charged with the falsification
such proof, the natural conclusion is, that the proof, if produced, instead of rebutting, would of a public document. The evidence showed that in the Register of Attorneys the name of an attorney
tend to sustain the charge. But this is to be cautiously applied, and only in cases where it is had been erased, and that the accused had written his own name in that space, although he had not
manifest that proofs are in the power of the accused, not accessible to the prosecution. admitted to the bar. The accused contended that he wrote his name in the register under the direction
of an employee of the court, and that he acted in good faith. He was convicted, and on appeal the
decision was affirmed. This court in its decision said: "The trial court suggests in the opinion that the
Estela Romualdez showed that of the sum of P510 P100 was paid to her by her mother and only P10 offense committed required the participation of some unfaithful employee of the court. But this fact, as
by her brother, but she could not satisfactorily prove where the remaining P400 came from. She said it the court found, did not lessen the criminal responsibility of the appellant."
was sent to her by her cousin, Prisca Magpayo Redona, for the purchase of goods, but she could not
name the person that brought the money to her, or explain why she deposited it in the bank. She did
not attempt to show that she had paid it out by means of checks for the purchase of goods for her It is alleged in the information that the accused conspired together and acted in common accord in the
cousin. She did not call her cousin as a witness. commission of the crime. As the Attorney-General says, a conspiracy can seldom be proved except by
circumstantial evidence, but once it is proved, the acts of one of the conspirators are the acts of all. (U.
S. vs. Ipil., 27 Phil., 530.)
An accused person runs the risk of an inference against him because of failure to produce
evidence. The inference, unless the failure to produce evidence is explained away, is that
the tenor of the specific unproduced evidence would not support the party's case. (U. The existence of the assent of minds which is involved in a conspiracy may be, and, from
S. vs. Sarikala, 37 Phil., 486.) the secrecy of the crime, usually must be, inferred by the jury from proof of facts and
circumstances which, taken together, apparently indicate that they are merely parts of some
complete whole. If it is proved that two or more persons aimed by their acts towards the
In the case just cited the court quoted with approval the following rules as stated by Dean Wigmore in accomplishment of the same unlawful object, each doing a part so that their acts, though
his work on Evidence, Vol. IV, p. 3148: apparently independent, were in fact connected and cooperative, indicating a closeness of
personal association and a concurrence of sentiment, a conspiracy may be inferred though
no actual meeting among them to concert means is proved. Evidence of actual participation,
rather than of passive acquiescence, is desirable. But proof of acquiescence in, or consent
to, the actions of others is relevant to show the criminal intention of the passive party, and
generally the smallest degree of consent or collusion among parties lets in the act or words
of one against the others. (Underhill on Criminal Evidence, pp. 795, 796.)

For the foregoing reasons, we find that the conclusions of the trial court are fully justified by the
evidence.

As the accused Estela Romualdez took advantage of her official position in committing the crime, the
trial court found her guilty of a violation of article 300 of the Penal Code, as amended by Act No. 2712,
and sentenced her to suffer six years and one day of prision mayor, and the accessory penalties
provided by law, to pay a fine of 1,000 pesetas, and to suffer perpetual disqualification to hold any
public office.

The penalty provided by the Penal Code is prision mayor in full extent, or from six years and one day to
twelve years, and the penalty under the Revised Penal Code being the same, and there being no
aggravating or mitigating circumstance present in the commission of the crime, the penalty should be
imposed in the medium degree, which is from eight years and one day to ten years. The penalty
imposed on the appellant Estela Romualdez is therefore increased to eight years and one day
of prision mayor.

The trial court found the defendant Luis Mabunay guilty as an accomplice under article 301 of the
Penal Code, the crime not being connected with the performance of his duties as an employee of the
Government, and sentenced him to suffer four months and one day of arresto mayor, and the
accessory penalties provided by law, and to pay a fine of 250 pesetas, with subsidiary imprisonment in
case of insolvency. The defendants were each sentenced to pay one-half of the costs.

We find that the lower court erred in holding that Luis Mabunay was merely an accomplice. He was a
conspirator and coprincipal of Estela Romualdez. The penalty provided by article 301 of the Penal
Code, as amended by Act No. 2712, is prision correccional in the maximum degree, but that has been
changed by the Revised Penal Code toprision correccional in the medium and maximum degrees, and
the medium degree of that penalty is from three years, six months, and twenty-one days to four years,
nine months and ten days. The prison sentence of Luis Mabunay is therefore increased to three years,
six months, and twenty- one days of prision correccional.

The decision of the trial court is modified as hereinabove stated. In all other respects it is affirmed, with
the costs against the appellants.

Ostrand, Abad Santos, Hull, Imperial and Butte, JJ., concur.


Republic of the Philippines There is no use continuing his law practice, Almacen said in this petition, "where
SUPREME COURT our Supreme Court is composed of men who are calloused to our pleas for
Manila justice, who ignore without reason their own applicable decisions and commit
culpable violations of the Constitution with impunity.
EN BANC
xxx xxx xxx

He expressed the hope that by divesting himself of his title by which he earns his
living, the present members of the Supreme Court "will become responsive to all
G.R. No. L-27654 February 18, 1970 cases brought to its attention without discrimination, and will purge itself of those
unconstitutional and obnoxious "lack of merit" or "denied resolutions. (Emphasis
IN THE MATTER OF PROCEEDINGS FOR DISCIPLINARY ACTION AGAINST ATTY. VICENTE supplied)
RAUL ALMACEN In L-27654, ANTONIO H. CALERO,
Atty. Almacen's statement that
vs.
... our own Supreme Court is composed of men who are calloused to our pleas of
VIRGINIA Y. YAPTINCHAY. [sic] justice, who ignore their own applicable decisions and commit culpable
violations of the Constitution with impunity

RESOLUTION
was quoted by columnist Vicente Albano Pacis in the issue of the Manila Chronicle of September 28,
1967. In connection therewith, Pacis commented that Atty. Almacen had "accused the high tribunal of
offenses so serious that the Court must clear itself," and that "his charge is one of the constitutional
bases for impeachment."
CASTRO, J.:
The genesis of this unfortunate incident was a civil case entitled Virginia Y. Yaptinchay vs. Antonio H.
Calero,1 in which Atty. Almacen was counsel for the defendant. The trial court, after due hearing,
Before us is Atty. Vicente Raul Almacen's "Petition to Surrender Lawyer's Certificate of Title," filed on
rendered judgment against his client. On June 15, 1966 Atty. Almacen received a copy of the decision.
September 25, 1967, in protest against what he therein asserts is "a great injustice committed against
Twenty days later, or on July 5, 1966, he moved for its reconsideration. He served on the adverse
his client by this Supreme Court." He indicts this Court, in his own phrase, as a tribunal "peopled by
counsel a copy of the motion, but did not notify the latter of the time and place of hearing on said
men who are calloused to our pleas for justice, who ignore without reasons their own applicable
motion. Meanwhile, on July 18, 1966, the plaintiff moved for execution of the judgment. For "lack of
decisions and commit culpable violations of the Constitution with impunity." His client's he continues,
proof of service," the trial court denied both motions. To prove that he did serve on the adverse party a
who was deeply aggrieved by this Court's "unjust judgment," has become "one of the sacrificial victims
copy of his first motion for reconsideration, Atty. Almacen filed on August 17, 1966 a second motion for
before the altar of hypocrisy." In the same breath that he alludes to the classic symbol of justice, he
reconsideration to which he attached the required registry return card. This second motion for
ridicules the members of this Court, saying "that justice as administered by the present members of the
reconsideration, however, was ordered withdrawn by the trial court on August 30, 1966, upon verbal
Supreme Court is not only blind, but also deaf and dumb." He then vows to argue the cause of his
motion of Atty. Almacen himself, who, earlier, that is, on August 22, 1966, had already perfected the
client "in the people's forum," so that "the people may know of the silent injustice's committed by this
appeal. Because the plaintiff interposed no objection to the record on appeal and appeal bond, the trial
Court," and that "whatever mistakes, wrongs and injustices that were committed must never be
court elevated the case to the Court of Appeals.
repeated." He ends his petition with a prayer that

But the Court of Appeals, on the authority of this Court's decision in Manila Surety & Fidelity Co., Inc.
... a resolution issue ordering the Clerk of Court to receive the certificate of the
vs. Batu Construction & Co., L-16636, June 24, 1965, dismissed the appeal, in the following words:
undersigned attorney and counsellor-at-law IN TRUST with reservation that at
any time in the future and in the event we regain our faith and confidence, we
may retrieve our title to assume the practice of the noblest profession. Upon consideration of the motion dated March 27, 1967, filed by plaintiff-appellee
praying that the appeal be dismissed, and of the opposition thereto filed by
defendant-appellant; the Court RESOLVED TO DISMISS, as it hereby dismisses,
He reiterated and disclosed to the press the contents of the aforementioned petition. Thus, on
the appeal, for the reason that the motion for reconsideration dated July 5, 1966
September 26, 1967, the Manila Times published statements attributed to him, as follows:
(pp. 90-113, printed record on appeal) does not contain a notice of time and
place of hearing thereof and is, therefore, a useless piece of paper (Manila
Vicente Raul Almacen, in an unprecedented petition, said he did it to expose the Surety & Fidelity Co., Inc. vs. Batu Construction & Co., G.R. No. L-16636, June
tribunal's "unconstitutional and obnoxious" practice of arbitrarily denying petitions 24, 1965), which did not interrupt the running of the period to appeal, and,
or appeals without any reason. consequently, the appeal was perfected out of time.

Because of the tribunal's "short-cut justice," Almacen deplored, his client was Atty. Almacen moved to reconsider this resolution, urging that Manila Surety & Fidelity Co. is not
condemned to pay P120,000, without knowing why he lost the case. decisive. At the same time he filed a pleading entitled "Latest decision of the Supreme Court in Support
of Motion for Reconsideration," citing Republic of the Philippines vs. Gregorio A. Venturanza, L-20417,
decided by this Court on May 30, 1966, as the applicable case. Again, the Court of Appeals denied the
xxx xxx xxx motion for reconsideration, thus:
Before this Court for resolution are the motion dated May 9, 1967 and the Court has no time to hear him in person." To give him the ampliest latitude for his defense, he was
supplement thereto of the same date filed by defendant- appellant, praying for allowed to file a written explanation and thereafter was heard in oral argument.
reconsideration of the resolution of May 8, 1967, dismissing the appeal.
His written answer, as undignified and cynical as it is unchastened, offers -no apology. Far from being
Appellant contends that there are some important distinctions between this case contrite Atty. Almacen unremittingly repeats his jeremiad of lamentations, this time embellishing it with
and that of Manila Surety and Fidelity Co., Inc. vs. Batu Construction & Co., G.R. abundant sarcasm and innuendo. Thus:
No. L- 16636, June 24, 1965, relied upon by this Court in its resolution of May 8,
1967. Appellant further states that in the latest case, Republic vs. Venturanza, L-
20417, May 30, 1966, decided by the Supreme Court concerning the question At the start, let me quote passages from the Holy Bible, Chapter 7, St. Matthew:
raised by appellant's motion, the ruling is contrary to the doctrine laid down in the —
Manila Surety & Fidelity Co., Inc. case.
"Do not judge, that you may not be judged. For with what
There is no substantial distinction between this case and that of Manila Surety & judgment you judge, you shall be judged, and with what
Fidelity Co. measure you measure, it shall be measured to you. But
why dost thou see the speck in thy brother's eye, and yet
dost not consider the beam in thy own eye? Or how can
In the case of Republic vs. Venturanza, the resolution denying the motion to thou say to thy brother, "Let me cast out the speck from thy
dismiss the appeal, based on grounds similar to those raised herein was issued eye"; and behold, there is a beam in thy own eye? Thou
on November 26, 1962, which was much earlier than the date of promulgation of hypocrite, first cast out the beam from thy own eye, and
the decision in the Manila Surety Case, which was June 24, 1965. Further, the then thou wilt see clearly to cast out the speck from thy
resolution in the Venturanza case was interlocutory and the Supreme Court brother's eyes."
issued it "without prejudice to appellee's restoring the point in the brief." In the
main decision in said case (Rep. vs. Venturanza the Supreme Court passed
upon the issue sub silencio presumably because of its prior decisions contrary to "Therefore all that you wish men to do to you, even to do
the resolution of November 26, 1962, one of which is that in the Manila Surety you also to them: for this is the Law and the Prophets."
and Fidelity case. Therefore Republic vs. Venturanza is no authority on the
matter in issue. xxx xxx xxx

Atty. Almacen then appealed to this Court by certiorari. We refused to take the case, and by minute Your respondent has no intention of disavowing the statements mentioned in his
resolution denied the appeal. Denied shortly thereafter was his motion for reconsideration as well as petition. On the contrary, he refirms the truth of what he stated, compatible with
his petition for leave to file a second motion for reconsideration and for extension of time. Entry of his lawyer's oath that he will do no falsehood, nor consent to the doing of any in
judgment was made on September 8, 1967. Hence, the second motion for reconsideration filed by him court. But he vigorously DENY under oath that the underscored statements
after the Said date was ordered expunged from the records. contained in the CHARGE are insolent, contemptuous, grossly disrespectful and
derogatory to the individual members of the Court; that they tend to bring the
It was at this juncture that Atty. Almacen gave vent to his disappointment by filing his "Petition to entire Court, without justification, into disrepute; and constitute conduct
Surrender Lawyer's Certificate of Title," already adverted to — a pleading that is interspersed from unbecoming of a member of the noble profession of law.
beginning to end with the insolent contemptuous, grossly disrespectful and derogatory remarks
hereinbefore reproduced, against this Court as well as its individual members, a behavior that is as xxx xxx xxx
unprecedented as it is unprofessional.

Respondent stands four-square that his statement is borne by TRUTH and has
Nonetheless we decided by resolution dated September 28, 1967 to withhold action on his petition until been asserted with NO MALICE BEFORE AND AFTER THOUGHT but mainly
he shall have actually surrendered his certificate. Patiently, we waited for him to make good his proffer. motivated with the highest interest of justice that in the particular case of our
No word came from him. So he was reminded to turn over his certificate, which he had earlier client, the members have shown callousness to our various pleas for JUSTICE,
vociferously offered to surrender, so that this Court could act on his petition. To said reminder he our pleadings will bear us on this matter, ...
manifested "that he has no pending petition in connection with Case G.R. No. L-27654, Calero vs.
Yaptinchay, said case is now final and executory;" that this Court's September 28, 1967 resolution did
not require him to do either a positive or negative act; and that since his offer was not accepted, he xxx xxx xxx
"chose to pursue the negative act."
To all these beggings, supplications, words of humility, appeals for charity,
In the exercise of its inherent power to discipline a member of the bar for contumely and gross generosity, fairness, understanding, sympathy and above all in the highest
misconduct, this Court on November 17, 1967 resolved to require Atty. Almacen to show cause "why interest of JUSTICE, — what did we get from this COURT? One word, DENIED,
no disciplinary action should be taken against him." Denying the charges contained in the November with all its hardiness and insensibility. That was the unfeeling of the Court
17 resolution, he asked for permission "to give reasons and cause why no disciplinary action should be towards our pleas and prayers, in simple word, it is plain callousness towards our
taken against him ... in an open and public hearing." This Court resolved (on December 7) "to require particular case.
Atty. Almacen to state, within five days from notice hereof, his reasons for such request, otherwise, oral
argument shall be deemed waived and incident submitted for decision." To this resolution he
xxx xxx xxx
manifested that since this Court is "the complainant, prosecutor and Judge," he preferred to be heard
and to answer questions "in person and in an open and public hearing" so that this Court could
observe his sincerity and candor. He also asked for leave to file a written explanation "in the event this
Now that your respondent has the guts to tell the members of the Court that xxx xxx xxx
notwithstanding the violation of the Constitution, you remained unpunished, this
Court in the reverse order of natural things, is now in the attempt to inflict
punishment on your respondent for acts he said in good faith. As we have stated, we have lost our faith and confidence in the members of this
Court and for which reason we offered to surrender our lawyer's certificate, IN
TRUST ONLY. Because what has been lost today may be regained tomorrow.
Did His Honors care to listen to our pleadings and supplications for JUSTICE, As the offer was intended as our self-imposed sacrifice, then we alone may
CHARITY, GENEROSITY and FAIRNESS? Did His Honors attempt to justify decide as to when we must end our self-sacrifice. If we have to choose between
their stubborn denial with any semblance of reason, NEVER. Now that your forcing ourselves to have faith and confidence in the members of the Court but
respondent is given the opportunity to face you, he reiterates the same statement disregard our Constitution and to uphold the Constitution and be condemned by
with emphasis, DID YOU? Sir. Is this. the way of life in the Philippines today, that the members of this Court, there is no choice, we must uphold the latter.
even our own President, said: — "the story is current, though nebulous ,is to its
truth, it is still being circulated that justice in the Philippines today is not what it is
used to be before the war. There are those who have told me frankly and brutally But overlooking, for the nonce, the vituperative chaff which he claims is not intended as a studied
that justice is a commodity, a marketable commodity in the Philippines." disrespect to this Court, let us examine the grain of his grievances.

xxx xxx xxx He chafes at the minute resolution denial of his petition for review. We are quite aware of the
criticisms2 expressed against this Court's practice of rejecting petitions by minute resolutions. We have
been asked to do away with it, to state the facts and the law, and to spell out the reasons for denial.
We condemn the SIN, not the SINNER. We detest the ACTS, not the ACTOR. We have given this suggestion very careful thought. For we know the abject frustration of a lawyer who
We attack the decision of this Court, not the members. ... We were provoked. We tediously collates the facts and for many weary hours meticulously marshalls his arguments, only to
were compelled by force of necessity. We were angry but we waited for the have his efforts rebuffed with a terse unadorned denial. Truth to tell, however, most petitions rejected
finality of the decision. We waited until this Court has performed its duties. We by this Court are utterly frivolous and ought never to have been lodged at all.3 The rest do exhibit a
never interfered nor obstruct in the performance of their duties. But in the end, first-impression cogency, but fail to, withstand critical scrutiny. By and large, this Court has been
after seeing that the Constitution has placed finality on your judgment against our generous in giving due course to petitions for certiorari.
client and sensing that you have not performed your duties with "circumspection,
carefulness, confidence and wisdom", your Respondent rise to claim his God
given right to speak the truth and his Constitutional right of free speech. Be this as it may, were we to accept every case or write a full opinion for every petition we reject, we
would be unable to carry out effectively the burden placed upon us by the Constitution. The proper role
of the Supreme Court, as Mr. Chief Justice Vinson of the U.S. Supreme Court has defined it, is to
xxx xxx xxx decide "only those cases which present questions whose resolutions will have immediate importance
beyond the particular facts and parties involved." Pertinent here is the observation of Mr. Justice
Frankfurter in Maryland vs. Baltimore Radio Show, 94 L. ed 562, 566:
The INJUSTICES which we have attributed to this Court and the further
violations we sought to be prevented is impliedly shared by our President. ... .
A variety of considerations underlie denials of the writ, and as to the same
petition different reasons may read different justices to the same result ... .
xxx xxx xxx

Since there are these conflicting, and, to the uninformed, even confusing reasons
What has been abhored and condemned, are the very things that were applied to us. Recalling Madam for denying petitions for certiorari, it has been suggested from time to time that
Roland's famous apostrophe during the French revolution, "O Liberty, what crimes are committed in thy the Court indicate its reasons for denial. Practical considerations preclude. In
name", we may dare say, "O JUSTICE, what technicalities are committed in thy name' or more order that the Court may be enabled to discharge its indispensable duties,
appropriately, 'O JUSTICE, what injustices are committed in thy name." Congress has placed the control of the Court's business, in effect, within the
Court's discretion. During the last three terms the Court disposed of 260, 217,
xxx xxx xxx 224 cases, respectively, on their merits. For the same three terms the Court
denied, respectively, 1,260, 1,105,1,189 petitions calling for discretionary review.
If the Court is to do its work it would not be feasible to give reasons, however
We must admit that this Court is not free from commission of any abuses, but brief, for refusing to take these cases. The tune that would be required is
who would correct such abuses considering that yours is a court of last resort. A prohibitive. Apart from the fact that as already indicated different reasons not
strong public opinion must be generated so as to curtail these abuses. infrequently move different members of the Court in concluding that a particular
case at a particular time makes review undesirable.
xxx xxx xxx
Six years ago, in Novino, et al., vs. Court of Appeals, et al., 1,21098, May 31, 1963 (60 O.G. 8099),
this Court, through the then Chief Justice Cesar Bengzon, articulated its considered view on this
The phrase, Justice is blind is symbolize in paintings that can be found in all
matter. There, the petitioners counsel urged that a "lack of merit" resolution violates Section 12 of
courts and government offices. We have added only two more symbols, that it is
Article VIII of the Constitution. Said Chief Justice Bengzon:
also deaf and dumb. Deaf in the sense that no members of this Court has ever
heard our cries for charity, generosity, fairness, understanding sympathy and for
justice; dumb in the sense, that inspite of our beggings, supplications, and In connection with identical short resolutions, the same question has been raised
pleadings to give us reasons why our appeal has been DENIED, not one word before; and we held that these "resolutions" are not "decisions" within the above
was spoken or given ... We refer to no human defect or ailment in the above constitutional requirement. They merely hold that the petition for review should
statement. We only describe the. impersonal state of things and nothing more. not be entertained in view of the provisions of Rule 46 of the Rules of Court; and
even ordinary lawyers have all this time so understood it. It should be Rules themselves do not fix any period within which he may file his reply or
remembered that a petition to review the decision of the Court of Appeals is not a opposition.
matter of right, but of sound judicial discretion; and so there is no need to fully
explain the court's denial. For one thing, the facts and the law are already
mentioned in the Court of Appeals' opinion. If Atty. Almacen failed to move the appellate court to review the lower court's judgment, he has only
himself to blame. His own negligence caused the forfeiture of the remedy of appeal, which, incidentally,
is not a matter of right. To shift away from himself the consequences of his carelessness, he looked for
By the way, this mode of disposal has — as intended — helped the Court in a "whipping boy." But he made sure that he assumed the posture of a martyr, and, in offering to
alleviating its heavy docket; it was patterned after the practice of the U.S. surrender his professional certificate, he took the liberty of vilifying this Court and inflicting his
Supreme Court, wherein petitions for review are often merely ordered exacerbating rancor on the members thereof. It would thus appear that there is no justification for his
"dismissed". scurrilous and scandalous outbursts.

We underscore the fact that cases taken to this Court on petitions for certiorari from the Court of Nonetheless we gave this unprecedented act of Atty. Almacen the most circumspect consideration. We
Appeals have had the benefit of appellate review. Hence, the need for compelling reasons to buttress know that it is natural for a lawyer to express his dissatisfaction each time he loses what he sanguinely
such petitions if this Court is to be moved into accepting them. For it is axiomatic that the supervisory believes to be a meritorious case. That is why lawyers are given 'wide latitude to differ with, and voice
jurisdiction vested upon this Court over the Court of Appeals is not intended to give every losing party their disapproval of, not only the courts' rulings but, also the manner in which they are handed down.
another hearing. This axiom is implied in sec. 4 of Rule 45 of the Rules of Court which recites:
Moreover, every citizen has the right to comment upon and criticize the actuations of public officers.
Review of Court of Appeals' decision discretionary.—A review is not a matter of This right is not diminished by the fact that the criticism is aimed at a judicial authority, 4 or that it is
right but of sound judicial discretion, and will be granted only when there are articulated by a lawyer.5 Such right is especially recognized where the criticism concerns a concluded
special and important reasons therefor. The following, while neither controlling litigation,6 because then the court's actuations are thrown open to public consumption.7 "Our decisions
nor fully measuring the court's discretion, indicate the character of reasons which and all our official actions," said the Supreme Court of Nebraska,8 "are public property, and the press
will be considered: and the people have the undoubted right to comment on them, criticize and censure them as they see
fit. Judicial officers, like other public servants, must answer for their official actions before the chancery
of public opinion."
(a) When the Court of Appeals has decided a question of substance, not
theretofore determined by the Supreme Court, nor has decided it in a way
probably not in accord with law or with the applicable decisions of the Supreme The likely danger of confusing the fury of human reaction to an attack on one's integrity, competence
Court; and honesty, with "imminent danger to the administration of justice," is the reason why courts have
been loath to inflict punishment on those who assail their actuations.9 This danger lurks especially in
such a case as this where those who Sit as members of an entire Court are themselves collectively the
(b) When the Court of Appeals has so far departed from the accepted and usual aggrieved parties.
course of judicial proceedings, or so far sanctioned such departure by the lower
court, as to call for the exercise of the power of supervision.
Courts thus treat with forbearance and restraint a lawyer who vigorously assails their actuations. 10 For
courageous and fearless advocates are the strands that weave durability into the tapestry of justice.
Recalling Atty. Almacen's petition for review, we found, upon a thoroughgoing examination of the Hence, as citizen and officer of the court, every lawyer is expected not only to exercise the right, but
pleadings. and records, that the Court of Appeals had fully and correctly considered the dismissal of also to consider it his duty to expose the shortcomings and indiscretions of courts and judges. 11
his appeal in the light of the law and applicable decisions of this Court. Far from straying away from the
"accepted and usual course of judicial proceedings," it traced the procedural lines etched by this Court
in a number of decisions. There was, therefore, no need for this Court to exercise its supervisory Courts and judges are not sacrosanct. 12 They should and expect critical evaluation of their
power. performance. 13 For like the executive and the legislative branches, the judiciary is rooted in the soil of
democratic society, nourished by the periodic appraisal of the citizens whom it is expected to serve.
As a law practitioner who was admitted to the Bar as far back as 1941, Atty. Almacen knew — or ought
to have known — that for a motion for reconsideration to stay the running of the period of appeal, the Well-recognized therefore is the right of a lawyer, both as an officer of the court and as a citizen, to
movant must not only serve a copy of the motion upon the adverse party (which he did), but also notify criticize in properly respectful terms and through legitimate channels the acts of courts and judges. The
the adverse party of the time and place of hearing (which admittedly he did not). This rule was reason is that
unequivocally articulated in Manila Surety & Fidelity vs. Batu Construction & Co., supra:
An attorney does not surrender, in assuming the important place accorded to him
The written notice referred to evidently is prescribed for motions in general by in the administration of justice, his right as a citizen to criticize the decisions of
Rule 15, Sections 4 and 5 (formerly Rule 26), which provides that such notice the courts in a fair and respectful manner, and the independence of the bar, as
shall state the time, and place of hearing and shall be served upon all the Parties well as of the judiciary, has always been encouraged by the courts. (In re Ades, 6
concerned at least three days in advance. And according to Section 6 of the F Supp. 487) .
same Rule no motion shall be acted upon by the court without proof of such
notice. Indeed it has been held that in such a case the motion is nothing but a
useless piece of paper (Philippine National Bank v. Damasco, I,18638, Feb. 28, Criticism of the courts has, indeed, been an important part of the traditional work of the bar. In the
1963; citing Manakil v. Revilla, 42 Phil. 81; Roman Catholic Bishop of Lipa v. prosecution of appeals, he points out the errors of lower courts. In written for law journals he dissects
Municipality of Unisan, 41 Phil. 866; and Director of Lands vs. Sanz, 45 Phil. with detachment the doctrinal pronouncements of courts and fearlessly lays bare for -all to see that
117). The reason is obvious: Unless the movant sets the time and place of flaws and inconsistence" of the doctrines (Hill v. Lyman, 126 NYS 2d 286). As aptly stated by Chief
hearing the Court would have no way to determine whether that party agrees to Justice Sharswood in Ex Parte Steinman, 40 Am. Rep. 641:
or objects to the motion, and if he objects, to hear him on his objection, since the
No class of the community ought to be allowed freer scope in the expansion or The counsel in any case may or may not be an abler or more learned lawyer than
publication of opinions as to the capacity, impartiality or integrity of judges than the judge, and it may tax his patience and temper to submit to rulings which he
members of the bar. They have the best opportunities for observing and forming regards as incorrect, but discipline and self-respect are as necessary to the
a correct judgment. They are in constant attendance on the courts. ... To say that orderly administration of justice as they are to the effectiveness of an army. The
an attorney can only act or speak on this subject under liability to be called to decisions of the judge must be obeyed, because he is the tribunal appointed to
account and to be deprived of his profession and livelihood, by the judge or decide, and the bar should at all times be the foremost in rendering respectful
judges whom he may consider it his duty to attack and expose, is a position too submission. (In Re Scouten, 40 Atl. 481)
monstrous to be
entertained. ... .
We concede that a lawyer may think highly of his intellectual endowment That is
his privilege. And he may suffer frustration at what he feels is others' lack of it.
Hence, as a citizen and as Officer of the court a lawyer is expected not only to exercise the right, but That is his misfortune. Some such frame of mind, however, should not be
also to consider it his duty to avail of such right. No law may abridge this right. Nor is he "professionally allowed to harden into a belief that he may attack a court's decision in words
answerable for a scrutiny into the official conduct of the judges, which would not expose him to legal calculated to jettison the time-honored aphorism that courts are the temples of
animadversion as a citizen." (Case of Austin, 28 Am. Dee. 657, 665). right. (Per Justice Sanchez in Rheem of the Philippines vs. Ferrer, L-22979. June
26, 1967)
Above all others, the members of the bar have the beat Opportunity to become
conversant with the character and efficiency of our judges. No class is less likely In his relations with the courts, a lawyer may not divide his personality so as to be an attorney at one
to abuse the privilege, as no other class has as great an interest in the time and a mere citizen at another. Thus, statements made by an attorney in private conversations or
preservation of an able and upright bench. (State Board of Examiners in Law v. communications 16 or in the course of a political, campaign, 17 if couched in insulting language as to
Hart, 116 N.W. 212, 216) bring into scorn and disrepute the administration of justice, may subject the attorney to disciplinary
action.
To curtail the right of a lawyer to be critical of the foibles of courts and judges is to seal the lips of those
in the best position to give advice and who might consider it their duty to speak disparagingly. "Under Of fundamental pertinence at this juncture is an examination of relevant parallel precedents.
such a rule," so far as the bar is concerned, "the merits of a sitting judge may be rehearsed, but as to
his demerits there must be profound silence." (State v. Circuit Court, 72 N.W. 196)
1. Admitting that a "judge as a public official is neither sacrosanct nor immune to public criticism of his
conduct in office," the Supreme Court of Florida in State v. Calhoon, 102 So. 2d 604, 608, nevertheless
But it is the cardinal condition of all such criticism that it shall be bona fide, and shall not spill over the declared that "any conduct of a lawyer which brings into scorn and disrepute the administration of
walls of decency and propriety. A wide chasm exists between fair criticism, on the One hand, and justice demands condemnation and the application of appropriate penalties," adding that:
abuse and slander of courts and the judges thereof, on the other. Intemperate and unfair criticism is a
gross violation of the duty of respect to courts. It is Such a misconduct that subjects a lawyer to
disciplinary action. It would be contrary to, every democratic theory to hold that a judge or a court is
beyond bona fide comments and criticisms which do not exceed the bounds of
decency and truth or which are not aimed at. the destruction of public confidence
For, membership in the Bar imposes upon a person obligations and duties which are not mere flux and in the judicial system as such. However, when the likely impairment of the
ferment. His investiture into the legal profession places upon his shoulders no burden more basic, administration of justice the direct product of false and scandalous accusations
more exacting and more imperative than that of respectful behavior toward the courts. He vows then the rule is otherwise.
solemnly to conduct himself "with all good fidelity ... to the courts; 14 and the Rules of Court constantly
remind him "to observe and maintain the respect due to courts of justice and judicial officers." 15 The
first canon of legal ethics enjoins him "to maintain towards the courts a respectful attitude, not for the 2. In In Re Glenn, 130 N.W. 2d 672, an attorney was suspended for putting out and circulating a leaflet
sake of the temporary incumbent of the judicial office, but for the maintenance of its supreme entitled "JUSTICE??? IN OTUMWA," which accused a municipal judge of having committed judicial
importance." error, of being so prejudiced as to deny his clients a fair trial on appeal and of being subject to the
control of a group of city officials. As a prefatory statement he wrote: "They say that Justice is BLIND,
but it took Municipal Judge Willard to prove that it is also DEAF and DUMB!" The court did not hesitate
As Mr. Justice Field puts it: to find that the leaflet went much further than the accused, as a lawyer, had a right to do.

... the obligation which attorneys impliedly assume, if they do not by express The entire publication evidences a desire on the part Of the accused to belittle
declaration take upon themselves, when they are admitted to the Bar, is not and besmirch the court and to bring it into disrepute with the general public.
merely to be obedient to the Constitution and laws, but to maintain at all times
the respect due to courts of justice and judicial officers. This obligation is not
discharged by merely observing the rules of courteous demeanor in open court, 3. In In Re Humphrey, 163 Pac. 60, the Supreme Court of California affirmed the two-year suspension
but includes abstaining out of court from all insulting language and offensive of an attorney who published a circular assailing a judge who at that time was a candidate for re-
conduct toward judges personally for their judicial acts. (Bradley, v. Fisher, 20 election to a judicial office. The circular which referred to two decisions of the judge concluded with a
Law. 4d. 647, 652) statement that the judge "used his judicial office to enable -said bank to keep that money." Said the
court:

The lawyer's duty to render respectful subordination to the courts is essential to the orderly
administration of justice. Hence, in the — assertion of their clients' rights, lawyers — even those gifted We are aware that there is a line of authorities which place no limit to the
with superior intellect are enjoined to rein up their tempers. criticism members of the bar may make regarding the capacity, impartiality, or
integrity of the courts, even though it extends to the deliberate publication by the
attorney capable of correct reasoning of baseless insinuations against the
intelligence and integrity of the highest courts. See State Board, etc. v. Hart. 116
N.W. 212, 17 LRA (N.S.) 585, 15 Ann Cas 197 and note: Ex parte Steinman 95 he possesses as a citizen. The acts and decisions of the courts of this state, in
Pac. 220, 40 Am. Rep. 637. In the first case mentioned it was observed, for cases that have reached final determination, are not exempt from fair and honest
instance: comment and criticism. It is only when an attorney transcends the limits of
legitimate criticism that he will be held responsible for an abuse of his liberty of
speech. We well understand that an independent bar, as well as independent
"It may be (although we do not so decide) that a libelous court, is always a vigilant defender of civil rights. In Re Troy, 111 Atl. 723. 725.
publication by an attorney, directed against a judicial
officer, could be so vile and of such a nature as to justify
the disbarment of its author." 6. In In Re Rockmore, 111 NYS 879, an attorney was suspended for six months for submitting to an
appellate court an affidavit reflecting upon the judicial integrity of the court from which the appeal was
taken. Such action, the Court said, constitutes unprofessional conduct justifying suspension from
Yet the false charges made by an attorney in that case were of graver character practice, notwithstanding that he fully retracted and withdrew the statements, and asserted that the
than those made by the respondent here. But, in our view, the better rule is that affidavit was the result of an impulse caused by what he considered grave injustice. The Court said:
which requires of those who are permitted to enjoy the privilege of practicing law
the strictest observance at all times of the principles of truth, honesty and
fairness, especially in their criticism of the courts, to the end that the public We cannot shut our eyes to the fact that there is a growing habit in the profession
confidence in the due administration of justice be upheld, and the dignity and of criticising the motives and integrity of judicial officers in the discharge of their
usefulness of the courts be maintained. In re Collins, 81 Pac. 220. duties, and thereby reflecting on the administration of justice and creating the
impression that judicial action is influenced by corrupt or improper motives. Every
attorney of this court, as well as every other citizen, has the right and it is his
4. In People ex rel Chicago Bar Asso. v. Metzen, 123 N.E. 734, an attorney, representing a woman duty, to submit charges to the authorities in whom is vested the power to remove
who had been granted a divorce, attacked the judge who set aside the decree on bill of review. He judicial officers for any conduct or act of a judicial officer that tends to show a
wrote the judge a threatening letter and gave the press the story of a proposed libel suit against the violation of his duties, or would justify an inference that he is false to his trust, or
judge and others. The letter began: has improperly administered the duties devolved upon him; and such charges to
the tribunal, if based upon reasonable inferences, will be encouraged, and the
Unless the record in In re Petersen v. Petersen is cleared up so that my name is person making them
protected from the libel, lies, and perjury committed in the cases involved, I shall protected. ... While we recognize the inherent right of an attorney in a case
be compelled to resort to such drastic action as the law allows and the case decided against him, or the right of the Public generally, to criticise the decisions
warrants. of the courts, or the reasons announced for them, the habit of criticising the
motives of judicial officers in the performance of their official duties, when the
proceeding is not against the officers whose acts or motives are criticised, tends
Further, he said: "However let me assure you I do not intend to allow such dastardly work to go to subvert the confidence of the community in the courts of justice and in the
unchallenged," and said that he was engaged in dealing with men and not irresponsible political administration of justice; and when such charges are made by officers of the
manikins or appearances of men. Ordering the attorney's disbarment, the Supreme Court of Illinois courts, who are bound by their duty to protect the administration of justice, the
declared: attorney making such charges is guilty of professional misconduct.

... Judges are not exempt from just criticism, and whenever there is proper 7. In In Re Mitchell, 71 So. 467, a lawyer published this statement:
ground for serious complaint against a judge, it is the right and duty of a lawyer to
submit his grievances to the proper authorities, but the public interest and the
administration of the law demand that the courts should have the confidence and I accepted the decision in this case, however, with patience, barring possible
respect of the people. Unjust criticism, insulting language, and offensive conduct temporary observations more or less vituperative and finally concluded, that, as
toward the judges personally by attorneys, who are officers of the court, which my clients were foreigners, it might have been expecting too much to look for a
tend to bring the courts and the law into disrepute and to destroy public decision in their favor against a widow residing here.
confidence in their integrity, cannot be permitted. The letter written to the judge
was plainly an attempt to intimidate and influence him in the discharge of judicial The Supreme Court of Alabama declared that:
functions, and the bringing of the unauthorized suit, together with the write-up in
the Sunday papers, was intended and calculated to bring the court into disrepute
with the public. ... the expressions above set out, not only transcend the bounds of propriety and
privileged criticism, but are an unwarranted attack, direct, or by insinuation and
innuendo, upon the motives and integrity of this court, and make out a prima
5. In a public speech, a Rhode Island lawyer accused the courts of the state of being influenced by facie case of improper conduct upon the part of a lawyer who holds a license
corruption and greed, saying that the seats of the Supreme Court were bartered. It does not appear from this court and who is under oath to demean himself with all good fidelity to
that the attorney had criticized any of the opinions or decisions of the Court. The lawyer was charged the court as well as to his client.
with unprofessional conduct, and was ordered suspended for a period of two years. The Court said:

The charges, however, were dismissed after the attorney apologized to the Court.
A calumny of that character, if believed, would tend to weaken the authority of
the court against whose members it was made, bring its judgments into
contempt, undermine its influence as an unbiased arbiter of the people's right, 8. In State ex rel. Dabney v. Breckenridge, 258 Pac. 747, an attorney published in a newspaper an
and interfere with the administration of justice. ... article in which he impugned the motives of the court and its members to try a case, charging the court
of having arbitrarily and for a sinister purpose undertaken to suspend the writ of habeas corpus. The
Court suspended the respondent for 30 days, saying that:
Because a man is a member of the bar the court will not, under the guise of
disciplinary proceedings, deprive him of any part of that freedom of speech which
The privileges which the law gives to members of the bar is one most subversive officers so assailed. It would not and could not ever enlighten the public in regard
of the public good, if the conduct of such members does not measure up to the to their judicial capacity or integrity. Nor was it an exercise by the accused of any
requirements of the law itself, as well as to the ethics of the profession. ... constitutional right, or of any privilege which any reputable attorney, uninfluenced
by passion, could ever have any occasion or desire to assert. No judicial officer,
with due regard to his position, can resent such an insult otherwise than by
The right of free speech and free discussion as to judicial determination is of methods sanctioned by law; and for any words, oral or written, however abusive,
prime importance under our system and ideals of government. No right thinking vile, or indecent, addressed secretly to the judge alone, he can have no redress
man would concede for a moment that the best interest to private citizens, as in any action triable by a jury. "The sending of a libelous communication or
well as to public officials, whether he labors in a judicial capacity or otherwise, libelous matter to the person defamed does not constitute an actionable
would be served by denying this right of free speech to any individual. But such publication." 18 Am. & Eng. Enc. Law (2d Ed.) p. 1017. In these respects the
right does not have as its corollary that members of the bar who are sworn to act sending by the accused of this letter to the Chief Justice was wholly different
honestly and honorably both with their client and with the courts where justice is from his other acts charged in the accusation, and, as we have said, wholly
administered, if administered at all, could ever properly serve their client or the different principles are applicable thereto.
public good by designedly misstating facts or carelessly asserting the law. Truth
and honesty of purpose by members of the bar in such discussion is necessary.
The health of a municipality is none the less impaired by a polluted water supply The conduct of the accused was in every way discreditable; but so far as he
than is the health of the thought of a community toward the judiciary by the filthy exercised the rights of a citizen, guaranteed by the Constitution and sanctioned
wanton, and malignant misuse of members of the bar of the confidence the by considerations of public policy, to which reference has been made, he was
public, through its duly established courts, has reposed in them to deal with the immune, as we hold, from the penalty here sought to be enforced. To that extent
affairs of the private individual, the protection of whose rights he lends his his rights as a citizen were paramount to the obligation which he had assumed as
strength and money to maintain the judiciary. For such conduct on the part of the an officer of this court. When, however he proceeded and thus assailed the Chief
members of the bar the law itself demands retribution — not the court. Justice personally, he exercised no right which the court can recognize, but, on
the contrary, willfully violated his obligation to maintain the respect due to courts
and judicial officers. "This obligation is not discharged by merely observing the
9. In Bar Ass'n of San Francisco v. Philbrook, 170 Pac. 440, the filing of an affidavit by an attorney in a rules of courteous demeanor in open court, but it includes abstaining out of court
pending action using in respect to the several judges the terms criminal corrupt, and wicked from all insulting language and offensive conduct toward the judges personally
conspiracies,," "criminal confederates," "colossal and confident insolence," "criminal prosecution," for their official acts." Bradley v. Fisher, 13 Wall. (U.S.) 355, 20 L. Ed. 646. And
"calculated brutality," "a corrupt deadfall," and similar phrases, was considered conduct unbecoming of there appears to be no distinction, as regards the principle involved, between the
a member of the bar, and the name of the erring lawyer was ordered stricken from the roll of attorneys. indignity of an assault by an attorney upon a judge, induced by his official act,
and a personal insult for like cause by written or spoken words addressed to the
10. In State Board of Examiners v. Hart, 116 N.W. 215, the erring attorney claimed that greater latitude judge in his chambers or at his home or elsewhere. Either act constitutes
should be allowed in case of criticism of cases finally adjudicated than in those pending. This lawyer misconduct wholly different from criticism of judicial acts addressed or spoken to
wrote a personal letter to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Minnesota impugning both the others. The distinction made is, we think entirely logical and well sustained by
intelligence and the integrity of the said Chief Justice and his associates in the decisions of certain authority. It was recognized in Ex parte McLeod supra. While the court in that
appeals in which he had been attorney for the defeated litigants. The letters were published in a case, as has been shown, fully sustained the right of a citizen to criticise rulings
newspaper. One of the letters contained this paragraph: of the court in actions which are ended, it held that one might be summarily
punished for assaulting a judicial officer, in that case a commissioner of the court,
for his rulings in a cause wholly concluded. "Is it in the power of any person," said
You assigned it (the property involved) to one who has no better right to it than the court, "by insulting or assaulting the judge because of official acts, if only the
the burglar to his plunder. It seems like robbing a widow to reward a fraud, with assailant restrains his passion until the judge leaves the building, to compel the
the court acting as a fence, or umpire, watchful and vigilant that the widow got no judge to forfeit either his own self-respect to the regard of the people by tame
undue submission to the indignity, or else set in his own person the evil example of
advantage. ... The point is this: Is a proper motive for the decisions discoverable, punishing the insult by taking the law in his own hands? ... No high-minded,
short of assigning to the court emasculated intelligence, or a constipation of manly man would hold judicial office under such conditions."
morals and faithlessness to duty? If the state bar association, or a committee
chosen from its rank, or the faculty of the University Law School, aided by the
researches of its hundreds of bright, active students, or if any member of the That a communication such as this, addressed to the Judge personally,
court, or any other person, can formulate a statement of a correct motive for the constitutes professional delinquency for which a professional punishment may be
decision, which shall not require fumigation before it is stated, and quarantine imposed, has been directly decided. "An attorney who, after being defeated in a
after it is made, it will gratify every right-minded citizen of the state to read it. case, wrote a personal letter to the trial justice, complaining of his conduct and
reflecting upon his integrity as a justice, is guilty of misconduct and will be
disciplined by the court." Matter of Manheim 133 App. Div. 136, 99 N.Y. Supp. 87
The Supreme Court of Minnesota, in ordering the suspension of the attorney for six months, delivered The same is held in Re Griffin (City Ct.) 1 N.Y. 7 and in Re Wilkes (City Ct.) 3
its opinion as follows: N.Y. In the latter case it appeared that the accused attorney had addressed a
sealed letter to a justice of the City Court of New York, in which it was stated, in
reference to his decision: "It is not law; neither is it common sense. The result is I
The question remains whether the accused was guilty of professional misconduct
have been robbed of 80." And it was decided that, while such conduct was not a
in sending to the Chief Justice the letter addressed to him. This was done, as we
contempt under the state, the matter should be "called to the attention of the
have found, for the very purpose of insulting him and the other justices of this
Supreme Court, which has power to discipline the attorney." "If," says the court,
court; and the insult was so directed to the Chief Justice personally because of
"counsel learned in the law are permitted by writings leveled at the heads of
acts done by him and his associates in their official capacity. Such a
judges, to charge them with ignorance, with unjust rulings, and with robbery,
communication, so made, could never subserve any good purpose. Its only effect
either as principals or accessories, it will not be long before the general public
in any case would be to gratify the spite of an angry attorney and humiliate the
may feel that they may redress their fancied grievances in like manner, and thus
the lot of a judge will be anything but a happy one, and the administration of 1. In Salcedo vs. Hernandez, 61 Phil. 724, where counsel branded the denial of his motion for
justice will fall into bad repute." reconsideration as "absolutely erroneous and constituting an outrage to the rigths of the petitioner
Felipe Salcedo and a mockery of the popular will expressed at the polls," this Court, although
conceding that
The recent case of Johnson v. State (Ala.) 44 South. 671, was in this respect
much the same as the case at bar. The accused, an attorney at law, wrote and
mailed a letter to the circuit judge, which the latter received by due course of It is right and plausible that an attorney, in defending the cause and rights of his
mail, at his home, while not holding court, and which referred in insulting terms to client, should do so with all the fervor and energy of which he is capable, but it is
the conduct of the judge in a cause wherein the accused had been one of the not, and never will be so for him to exercise said right by resorting to intimidation
attorneys. For this it was held that the attorney was rightly disbarred in having or proceeding without the propriety and respect which the dignity of the courts
"willfully failed to maintain respect due to him [the judge] as a judicial officer, and requires. The reason for this is that respect for the courts guarantees the stability
thereby breached his oath as an attorney." As recognizing the same principle, of their institution. Without such guaranty, said institution would be resting on a
and in support of its application to the facts of this case, we cite the following: Ex very shaky foundation,
parte Bradley, 7 Wall (U.S.) 364, 19 L. Ed. 214; Beene v. State, 22 Ark.
149; Commonwealth v. Dandridge, 2 Va. Cas. 408; People v. Green, 7 Colo 237,
244, 3 Pac. 65, 374, 49 Am. Rep. 351; Smith's Appeal, 179 Pa. 14, 36 Atl. 134; found counsel guilty of contempt inasmuch as, in its opinion, the statements made disclosed
Scouten's Appeal, 186 Pa. 270, Atl. 481.
... an inexcusable disrespect of the authority of the court and an intentional
Our conclusion is that the charges against the accused have been so far contempt of its dignity, because the court is thereby charged with no less than
sustained as to make it our duty to impose such a penalty as may be sufficient having proceeded in utter disregard of the laws, the rights to the parties, and 'of
lesson to him and a suitable warning to others. ... the untoward consequences, or with having abused its power and mocked and
flouted the rights of Attorney Vicente J. Francisco's client ... .

11. In Cobb v. United States, 172 F. 641, the court affirmed a lawyer's suspension for 18 months for
publishing a letter in a newspaper in which he accused a judge of being under the sinister influence of 2. In In re Sotto, 82 Phil. 595, counsel, a senator and the author of the Press Freedom Law, reaching
a gang that had paralyzed him for two years. to, the imprisonment for contempt of one Angel Parazo, who, invoking said law, refused to divulge the
source of a news item carried in his paper, caused to be published in i local newspaper a statement
expressing his regret "that our High Tribunal has not only erroneously interpreted said law, but it is
12. In In Re Graves, 221 Pac. 411, the court held that an attorney's unjustifiable attack against the once more putting in evidence the incompetency or narrow mindedness of the majority of its
official acts and decisions of a judge constitutes "moral turpitude." There, the attorney was disbarred members," and his belief that "In the wake of so many blunders and injustices deliberately committed
for criticising not only the judge, but his decisions in general claiming that the judge was dishonest in during these last years, ... the only remedy to put an end to go much evil, is to change the members of
reaching his decisions and unfair in his general conduct of a case. the Supreme Court," which tribunal he denounced as "a constant peril to liberty and democracy" and "a
far cry from the impregnable bulwark of justice of those memorable times of Cayetano Arellano,
Victorino Mapa, Manuel Araullo and other learned jurists who were the honor and glory of the
13. In In Re Doss, 12 N.E. 2d 659, an attorney published newspaper articles after the trial of cases, Philippine Judiciary." He there also announced that one of the first measures he would introduce in
criticising the court in intemperate language. The invariable effect of this sort of propaganda, said the then forthcoming session of Congress would have for its object the complete reorganization of the
court, is to breed disrespect for courts and bring the legal profession into disrepute with the public, for Supreme Court. Finding him in contempt, despite his avowals of good faith and his invocation of the
which reason the lawyer was disbarred. guarantee of free speech, this Court declared:

14. In State v. Grimes, 354 Pac. 2d 108, an attorney, dissatisfied with the loss of a case, prepared over But in the above-quoted written statement which he caused to be published in
a period of years vicious attacks on jurists. The Oklahoma Supreme Court declared that his acts the press, the respondent does not merely criticize or comment on the decision
involved such gross moral turpitude as to make him unfit as a member of the bar. His disbarment was of the Parazo case, which was then and still is pending consideration by this
ordered, even though he expressed an intention to resign from the bar. Court upon petition of Angel Parazo. He not only intends to intimidate the
members of this Court with the presentation of a bill in the next Congress, of
The teaching derived from the above disquisition and impressive affluence of judicial pronouncements which he is one of the members, reorganizing the Supreme Court and reducing
is indubitable: Post-litigation utterances or publications, made by lawyers, critical of the courts and their the number of Justices from eleven, so as to change the members of this Court
judicial actuations, whether amounting to a crime or not, which transcend the permissible bounds of fair which decided the Parazo case, who according to his statement, are incompetent
comment and legitimate criticism and thereby tend to bring them into disrepute or to subvert public and narrow minded, in order to influence the final decision of said case by this
confidence in their integrity and in the orderly administration of justice, constitute grave professional Court, and thus embarrass or obstruct the administration of justice. But the
misconduct which may be visited with disbarment or other lesser appropriate disciplinary sanctions by respondent also attacks the honesty and integrity of this Court for the apparent
the Supreme Court in the exercise of the prerogatives inherent in it as the duly constituted guardian of purpose of bringing the Justices of this Court into disrepute and degrading the
the morals and ethics of the legal fraternity. administration. of justice ... .

Of course, rarely have we wielded our disciplinary powers in the face of unwarranted outbursts of To hurl the false charge that this Court has been for the last years committing
counsel such as those catalogued in the above-cited jurisprudence. Cases of comparable nature have deliberately so many blunders and injustices, that is to say, that it has been
generally been disposed of under the power of courts to punish for contempt which, although resting deciding in favor of Que party knowing that the law and justice is on the part of
on different bases and calculated to attain a different end, nevertheless illustrates that universal the adverse party and not on the one in whose favor the decision was rendered,
abhorrence of such condemnable practices. in many cases decided during the last years, would tend necessarily to
undermine the confidence of the people in the honesty and integrity of the
members of this Court, and consequently to lower ,or degrade the administration
A perusal of the more representative of these instances may afford enlightenment. of justice by this Court. The Supreme Court of the Philippines is, under the
Constitution, the last bulwark to which the Filipino people may repair to obtain however, came when, in People vs. Alarcon, 20 the then Chief Justice Manuel V. Moran dissented with
relief for their grievances or protection of their rights when these are trampled the holding of the majority, speaking thru Justice Jose P. Laurel, which upheld the rule above-adverted
upon, and if the people lose their confidence in the honesty and integrity of the to. A complete disengagement from the settled rule was later to be made in In re Brillantes, 21 a
members of this Court and believe that they cannot expect justice therefrom, they contempt proceeding, where the editor of the Manila Guardian was adjudged in contempt for publishing
might be driven to take the law into their own hands, and disorder and perhaps an editorial which asserted that the 1944 Bar Examinations were conducted in a farcical manner after
chaos might be the result. As a member of the bar and an officer of the courts, the question of the validity of the said examinations had been resolved and the case closed. Virtually,
Atty. Vicente Sotto, like any other, is in duty bound to uphold the dignity and this was an adoption of the view expressed by Chief Justice Moran in his dissent in Alarcon to the
authority of this Court, to which he owes fidelity according to the oath he has effect that them may still be contempt by publication even after a case has been terminated. Said Chief
taken as such attorney, and not to promote distrust in the administration of Justice Moran in Alarcon:
justice. Respect to the courts guarantees the stability of other institutions, which
without such guaranty would be resting on a very shaky foundation.
A publication which tends to impede, obstruct, embarrass or influence the courts
in administering justice in a pending suit or proceeding, constitutes criminal
Significantly, too, the Court therein hastened to emphasize that contempt which is 'summarily punishable by courts. A publication which tends to
degrade the courts and to destroy public confidence in them or that which tends
to bring them in any way into disrepute, constitutes likewise criminal contempt,
... an attorney as an officer of the court is under special obligation to be and is equally punishable by courts. What is sought, in the first kind of contempt,
respectful in his conduct and communication to the courts; he may be removed to be shielded against the influence of newspaper comments, is the all-important
from office or stricken from the roll of attorneys as being guilty of flagrant duty of the courts to administer justice in the decision of a pending case. In the
misconduct (17 L.R.A. [N.S.], 586, 594.) second kind of contempt, the punitive hand of justice is extended to vindicate the
courts from any act or conduct calculated to bring them into disfavor or to destroy
3. In Rheem of the Philippines vs. Ferrer: In re Proceedings against Alfonso Ponce Enrile, et al., supra, public confidence in them. In the first there is no contempt where there is no
where counsel charged this Court with having "repeatedly fallen" into ,the pitfall of blindly adhering to action pending, as there is no decision which might in any way be influenced by
its previous "erroneous" pronouncements, "in disregard of the law on jurisdiction" of the Court of the newspaper publication. In the second, the contempt exists, with or without a
Industrial Relations, our condemnation of counsel's misconduct was unequivocal. Articulating the pending case, as what is sought to be protected is the court itself and its dignity.
sentiments of the Court, Mr. Justice Sanchez stressed: Courts would lose their utility if public confidence in them is destroyed.

As we look back at the language (heretofore quoted) employed in the motion for Accordingly, no comfort is afforded Atty. Almacen by the circumstance that his statements and
reconsideration, implications there are which inescapably arrest attention. It actuations now under consideration were made only after the judgment in his client's appeal had
speaks of one pitfall into which this Court has repeatedly fallen whenever the attained finality. He could as much be liable for contempt therefor as if it had been perpetrated during
jurisdiction of the Court of Industrial Relations comes into question. That pitfall is the pendency of the said appeal.
the tendency of this Court to rely on its own pronouncements in disregard of the
law on jurisdiction. It makes a sweeping charge that the decisions of this More than this, however, consideration of whether or not he could be held liable for contempt for such
Court, blindly adhere to earlier rulings without as much as making any reference post litigation utterances and actuations, is here immaterial. By the tenor of our Resolution of
to and analysis of the pertinent statute governing the jurisdiction of the industrial November 17, 1967, we have confronted the situation here presented solely in so far as it concerns
court. The plain import of all these is that this Court is so patently inept that in Atty. Almacen's professional identity, his sworn duty as a lawyer and his fitness as an officer of this
determining the jurisdiction of the industrial court, it has committed error and Court, in the exercise of the disciplinary power the morals inherent in our authority and duty to
continuously repeated that error to the point of perpetuation. It pictures this Court safeguard and ethics of the legal profession and to preserve its ranks from the intrusions of
as one which refuses to hew to the line drawn by the law on jurisdictional unprincipled and unworthy disciples of the noblest of callings. In this inquiry, the pendency or non-
boundaries. Implicit in the quoted statements is that the pronouncements of this pendency of a case in court is altogether of no consequence. The sole objective of this proceeding is to
Court on the jurisdiction of the industrial court are not entitled to respect. Those preserve the purity of the legal profession, by removing or suspending a member whose misconduct
statements detract much from the dignity of and respect due this Court. They has proved himself unfit to continue to be entrusted with the duties and responsibilities belonging to the
bring into question the capability of the members — and some former members office of an attorney.
of this Court to render justice. The second paragraph quoted yields a tone of
sarcasm which counsel labelled as "so called" the "rule against splitting of
jurisdiction." Undoubtedly, this is well within our authority to do. By constitutional mandate, 22 our is the solemn duty,
amongst others, to determine the rules for admission to the practice of law. Inherent in this prerogative
18
is the corresponding authority to discipline and exclude from the practice of law those who have proved
Similar thoughts and sentiments have been expressed in other cases which, in the interest of brevity, themselves unworthy of continued membership in the Bar. Thus —
need not now be reviewed in detail.

The power to discipline attorneys, who are officers of the court, is an inherent
Of course, a common denominator underlies the aforecited cases — all of them involved contumacious and incidental power in courts of record, and one which is essential to an orderly
statements made in pleadings filed pending litigation. So that, in line with the doctrinal rule that the discharge of judicial functions. To deny its existence is equivalent to a declaration
protective mantle of contempt may ordinarily be invoked only against scurrilous remarks or malicious that the conduct of attorneys towards courts and clients is not subject to restraint.
innuendoes while a court mulls over a pending case and not after the conclusion thereof, 19 Atty. Such a view is without support in any respectable authority, and cannot be
Almacen would now seek to sidestep the thrust of a contempt charge by his studied emphasis that the tolerated. Any court having the right to admit attorneys to practice and in this
remarks for which he is now called upon to account were made only after this Court had written finis to state that power is vested in this court-has the inherent right, in the exercise of a
his appeal. This is of no moment. sound judicial discretion to exclude them from practice. 23

The rule that bars contempt after a judicial proceeding has terminated, has lost much of its vitality. For
sometime, this was the prevailing view in this jurisdiction. The first stir for a modification thereof,
This, because the admission of a lawyer to the practice of law is a representation to all that he is judges" all rolled up into one in this instance. This is an utter misapprehension, if not a total distortion,
worthy of their confidence and respect. So much so that — not only of the nature of the proceeding at hand but also of our role therein.

... whenever it is made to appear to the court that an attorney is no longer worthy Accent should be laid on the fact that disciplinary proceedings like the present are sui generis. Neither
of the trust and confidence of the public and of the courts, it becomes, not only purely civil nor purely criminal, this proceeding is not — and does not involve — a trial of an action or a
the right, but the duty, of the court which made him one of its officers, and gave suit, but is rather an investigation by the Court into the conduct of its officers. 27 Not being intended to.
him the privilege of ministering within its bar, to withdraw the privilege. Therefore inflict punishment, it is in no sense a criminal prosecution. Accordingly, there is neither a plaintiff nor a
it is almost universally held that both the admission and disbarment of attorneys prosecutor therein It may be initiated by the Court motu proprio. 28 Public interest is its primary
are judicial acts, and that one is admitted to the bar and exercises his functions objective, and the real question for determination is whether or not the attorney is still a fit person to be
as an attorney, not as a matter of right, but as a privilege conditioned on his own allowed the privileges as such. Hence, in the exercise of its disciplinary powers, the Court merely calls
behavior and the exercise of a just and sound judicial discretion. 24 upon a member of the Bar to account for his actuations as an officer of the Court with the end in view
of preserving the purity of the legal profession and the proper and honest administration of justice by
purging the profession of members who by their misconduct have proved themselves no longer worthy
Indeed, in this jurisdiction, that power to remove or suspend has risen above being a mere inherent or to be entrusted with the duties and responsibilities pertaining to the office of an attorney. 29 In such
incidental power. It has been elevated to an express mandate by the Rules of Court. 25 posture, there can thus be no occasion to speak of a complainant or a prosecutor.

Our authority and duty in the premises being unmistakable, we now proceed to make an assessment Undeniably, the members of the Court are, to a certain degree, aggrieved parties. Any tirade against
of whether or not the utterances and actuations of Atty. Almacen here in question are properly the the Court as a body is necessarily and inextricably as much so against the individual members thereof.
object of disciplinary sanctions. But in the exercise of its disciplinary powers, the Court acts as an entity separate and distinct from the
individual personalities of its members. Consistently with the intrinsic nature of a collegiate court, the
The proffered surrender of his lawyer's certificate is, of course, purely potestative on Atty. Almacen's individual members act not as such individuals but. only as a duly constituted court. Their distinct
part. Unorthodox though it may seem, no statute, no law stands in its way. Beyond making the mere individualities are lost in the majesty of their office. 30So that, in a very real sense, if there be any
offer, however, he went farther. In haughty and coarse language, he actually availed of the said move complainant in the case at bar, it can only be the Court itself, not the individual members thereof — as
as a vehicle for his vicious tirade against this Court. The integrated entirety of his petition bristles with well as the people themselves whose rights, fortunes and properties, nay, even lives, would be placed
vile insults all calculated to drive home his contempt for and disrespect to the Court and its members. at grave hazard should the administration of justice be threatened by the retention in the Bar of men
Picturing his client as "a sacrificial victim at the altar of hypocrisy," he categorically denounces the unfit to discharge the solemn responsibilities of membership in the legal fraternity.
justice administered by this Court to be not only blind "but also deaf and dumb." With unmitigated
acerbity, he virtually makes this Court and its members with verbal talons, imputing to the Court the Finally, the power to exclude persons from the practice of law is but a necessary incident of the power
perpetration of "silent injustices" and "short-cut justice" while at the same time branding its members as to admit persons to said practice. By constitutional precept, this power is vested exclusively in this
"calloused to pleas of justice." And, true to his announced threat to argue the cause of his client "in the Court. This duty it cannot abdicate just as much as it cannot unilaterally renounce jurisdiction legally
people's forum," he caused the publication in the papers of an account of his actuations, in a calculated invested upon it. 31 So that even if it be conceded that the members collectively are in a sense the
effort ;to startle the public, stir up public indignation and disrespect toward the Court. Called upon to aggrieved parties, that fact alone does not and cannot disqualify them from the exercise of that power
make an explanation, he expressed no regret, offered no apology. Instead, with characteristic because public policy demands that they., acting as a Court, exercise the power in all cases which call
arrogance, he rehashed and reiterated his vituperative attacks and, alluding to the Scriptures, virtually for disciplinary action. The present is such a case. In the end, the imagined anomaly of the merger in
tarred and feathered the Court and its members as inveterate hypocrites incapable of administering one entity of the personalities of complainant, prosecutor and judge is absolutely inexistent.
justice and unworthy to impose disciplinary sanctions upon him.

Last to engage our attention is the nature and extent of the sanctions that may be visited upon Atty.
The virulence so blatantly evident in Atty. Almacen's petition, answer and oral argumentation speaks Almacen for his transgressions. As marked out by the Rules of Court, these may range from mere
for itself. The vicious language used and the scurrilous innuendoes they carried far transcend the suspension to total removal or disbarment. 32 The discretion to assess under the circumstances the
permissible bounds of legitimate criticism. They could never serve any purpose but to gratify the spite imposable sanction is, of course, primarily addressed to the sound discretion of the Court which, being
of an irate attorney, attract public attention to himself and, more important of all, bring ;this Court and neither arbitrary and despotic nor motivated by personal animosity or prejudice, should ever be
its members into disrepute and destroy public confidence in them to the detriment of the orderly controlled by the imperative need that the purity and independence of the Bar be scrupulously guarded
administration of justice. Odium of this character and texture presents no redeeming feature, and and the dignity of and respect due to the Court be zealously maintained.
completely negates any pretense of passionate commitment to the truth. It is not a whit less than a
classic example of gross misconduct, gross violation of the lawyer's oath and gross transgression of
the Canons of Legal Ethics. As such, it cannot be allowed to go unrebuked. The way for the exertion of That the misconduct committed by Atty. Almacen is of considerable gravity cannot be overemphasized.
our disciplinary powers is thus laid clear, and the need therefor is unavoidable. However, heeding the stern injunction that disbarment should never be decreed where a lesser
sanction would accomplish the end desired, and believing that it may not perhaps be futile to hope that
in the sober light of some future day, Atty. Almacen will realize that abrasive language never fails to do
We must once more stress our explicit disclaimer of immunity from criticism. Like any other disservice to an advocate and that in every effervescence of candor there is ample room for the added
Government entity in a viable democracy, the Court is not, and should not be, above criticism. But a glow of respect, it is our view that suspension will suffice under the circumstances. His demonstrated
critique of the Court must be intelligent and discriminating, fitting to its high function as the court of last persistence in his misconduct by neither manifesting repentance nor offering apology therefor leave us
resort. And more than this, valid and healthy criticism is by no means synonymous to obloquy, and no way of determining how long that suspension should last and, accordingly, we are impelled to
requires detachment and disinterestedness, real qualities approached only through constant striving to decree that the same should be indefinite. This, we are empowered to do not alone because
attain them. Any criticism of the Court must, possess the quality of judiciousness and must be informed jurisprudence grants us discretion on the matter 33 but also because, even without the comforting
-by perspective and infused by philosophy. 26 support of precedent, it is obvious that if we have authority to completely exclude a person from the
practice of law, there is no reason why indefinite suspension, which is lesser in degree and effect, can
It is not accurate to say, nor is it an obstacle to the exercise of our authority in ;the premises, that, as be regarded as falling outside of the compass of that authority. The merit of this choice is best shown
Atty. Almacen would have appear, the members of the Court are the "complainants, prosecutors and by the fact that it will then be left to Atty. Almacen to determine for himself how long or how short that
suspension shall last. For, at any time after the suspension becomes effective he may prove to this
Court that he is once again fit to resume the practice of law.

ACCORDINGLY, IT IS THE SENSE of the Court that Atty. Vicente Raul Almacen be, as he is hereby,
suspended from the practice of law until further orders, the suspension to take effect immediately.

Let copies of this resolution. be furnished the Secretary of Justice, the Solicitor General and the Court
of Appeals for their information and guidance.

Concepcion,. C.J., Reyes, J.B.L., Dizon, Makalintal, Zaldivar, Sanchez, Teehankee, Barredo and
Villamor JJ., concur.

Fernando, J., took no part.


Republic of the Philippines Although as already stated, the Director of Patents, in the past, would appear to have been holding
SUPREME COURT tests or examinations the passing of which was imposed as a required qualification to practice before
Manila the Patent Office, to our knowledge, this is the first time that the right of the Director of Patents to do
so, specially as regards members of the bar, has been questioned formally, or otherwise put in issue.
And we have given it careful thought and consideration.
EN BANC

The Supreme Court has the exclusive and constitutional power with respect to admission to the
G.R. No. L-12426 February 16, 1959 practice of law in the Philippines1 and to any member of the Philippine Bar in good standing may
practice law anywhere and before any entity, whether judicial or quasi-judicial or administrative, in the
PHILIPPINE LAWYER'S ASSOCIATION, petitioner, Philippines. Naturally, the question arises as to whether or not appearance before the patent Office
vs. and the preparation and the prosecution of patent applications, etc., constitutes or is included in the
CELEDONIO AGRAVA, in his capacity as Director of the Philippines Patent Office, respondent. practice of law.

Arturo A. Alafriz for petitioner. The practice of law is not limited to the conduct of cases or litigation in court; it embraces
Office of the Solicitor General Ambrosio Padilla and Solicitor Pacifico P. de Castro for respondent. the preparation of pleadings and other papers incident to actions and social proceedings,
the management of such actions and proceedings on behalf of clients before judges and
courts, and in addition, conveying. In general, all advice to clients, and all action taken for
MONTEMAYOR, J.: them in matters connected with the law corporation services, assessment and
condemnation services contemplating an appearance before a judicial body, the foreclosure
of a mortgage, enforcement of a creditor's claim in bankruptcy and insolvency proceedings,
This is the petition filed by the Philippine Lawyer's Association for prohibition and injunction against
and conducting proceedings in attachment, and in matters of estate and guardianship have
Celedonio Agrava, in his capacity as Director of the Philippines Patent Office.
been held to constitute law practice as do the preparation and drafting of legal
instruments, where the work done involves the determination by the trained legal mind of
On may 27, 1957, respondent Director issued a circular announcing that he had scheduled for June the legal effect of facts and conditions. (5 Am. Jur. p. 262, 263). (Emphasis supplied).
27, 1957 an examination for the purpose of determining who are qualified to practice as patent
attorneys before the Philippines Patent Office, the said examination to cover patent law and
Practice of law under modern conditions consists in no small part of work performed outside
jurisprudence and the rules of practice before said office. According to the circular, members of the
of any court and having no immediate relation to proceedings in court. It embraces
Philippine Bar, engineers and other persons with sufficient scientific and technical training are qualified
conveyancing, the giving of legal advice on a large variety of subjects, and the preparation
to take the said examination. It would appear that heretofore, respondent Director has been holding
and execution of legal instruments covering an extensive field of business and trust
similar examinations.
relations and other affairs. Although these transactions may have no direct connection with
court proceedings, they are always subject to become involved in litigation. They require in
It is the contention of the petitioner Philippine Lawyer's Association that one who has passed the bar many aspects a high degree of legal skill, a wide experience with men and affairs, and great
examinations and is licensed by the Supreme Court to practice law in the Philippines and who is in capacity for adaptation to difficult and complex situations. These customary functions of an
good standing, is duly qualified to practice before the Philippines Patent Office, and that consequently, attorney or counselor at law bear an intimate relation to the administration of justice by the
the cat of the respondent Director requiring members of the Philippine Bar in good standing to take and courts. No valid distinction, so far as concerns the question set forth in the order, can be
pass an examination given by the Patent Office as a condition precedent to their being allowed to drawn between that part which involves advice and drafting of instruments in his office. It is
practice before said office, such as representing applicants in the preparation and prosecution of of importance to the welfare of the public that these manifold customary functions be
applications for patent, is in excess of his jurisdiction and is in violation of the law. performed by persons possessed of adequate learning and skill, of sound moral character,
and acting at all times under the heavy trust obligations to clients which rests upon all
attorneys. (Moran, Comments on the Rules of Court, Vol. 3 (1953 ed.), p. 665-666, citing In
In his answer, respondent Director, through the Solicitor General, maintains that the prosecution of re Opinion of the Justices (Mass.), 194 N.E. 313, quoted in Rhode Is. Bar Assoc. vs.
patent cases "does not involve entirely or purely the practice of law but includes the application of Automobile Service Assoc. (R. I. ) 179 A. 139, 144). (Emphasis ours).
scientific and technical knowledge and training, so much so that, as a matter of actual practice, the
prosecution of patent cases may be handled not only by lawyers, but also engineers and other persons
with sufficient scientific and technical training who pass the prescribed examinations as given by the In our opinion, the practice of law includes such appearance before the Patent Office, the
Patent Office; . . . that the Rules of Court do not prohibit the Patent Office, or any other quasi-judicial representation of applicants, oppositors, and other persons, and the prosecution of their applications
body from requiring further condition or qualification from those who would wish to handle cases before for patent, their oppositions thereto, or the enforcement of their rights in patent cases. In the first place,
the Patent Office which, as stated in the preceding paragraph, requires more of an application of although the transaction of business in the Patent Office involves the use and application of technical
scientific and technical knowledge than the mere application of provisions of law; . . . that the action and scientific knowledge and training, still, all such business has to be rendered in accordance with the
taken by the respondent is in accordance with Republic Act No. 165, otherwise known as the Patent Patent Law, as well as other laws, including the Rules and Regulations promulgated by the Patent
Law of the Philippines, which similar to the United States Patent Law, in accordance with which the Office in accordance with law. Not only this, but practice before the Patent Office involves the
United States Patent Office has also prescribed a similar examination as that prescribed by interpretation and application of other laws and legal principles, as well as the existence of facts to be
respondent. . . . established in accordance with the law of evidence and procedure. For instance: Section 8 of our
Patent Law provides that an invention shall not be patentable if it is contrary to public order or morals,
or to public health or welfare. Section 9 says that an invention shall not be considered new or
Respondent further contends that just as the Patent law of the United States of America authorizes the patentable if it was known or used by others in the Philippines before the invention thereof by the
Commissioner of Patents to prescribe examinations to determine as to who practice before the United inventor named in any printed publication in the Philippines or any foreign country more than one year
States Patent Office, the respondent, is similarly authorized to do so by our Patent Law, Republic Act before the application for a patent therefor, or if it had been in public use or on sale in the Philippines
No. 165. for more than one year before the application for the patent therefor. Section 10 provides that the right
to patent belongs to the true and actual inventor, his heirs, legal representatives or assigns. Section 25
and 26 refer to connection of any mistake in a patent. Section 28 enumerates the grounds for
cancellation of a patent; that although any person may apply for such cancellation, under Section 29, the bar. He contends that our Patent Law, Republic Act No. 165, is patterned after the United States
the Solicitor General is authorized to petition for the cancellation of a patent. Section 30 mentions the Patent Law; and of the United States Patent Office in Patent Cases prescribes an examination similar
requirements of a petition for cancellation. Section 31 and 32 provide for a notice of hearing of the to that which he (respondent) has prescribed and scheduled. He invites our attention to the following
petition for cancellation of the patent by the Director of Patents in case the said cancellation is provisions of said Rules of Practice:
warranted. Under Section 34, at any time after the expiration of three years from the day the patent
was granted, any person patent on several grounds, such as, if the patented invention is not being
worked in the Philippines on a commercial scale, or if the demand for the patented article in the Registration of attorneys and agents. — A register of an attorneys and a register agents are
Philippines on a commercial scale, or if the demand for the patented article in the Philippines is not kept in the Patent Office on which are entered the names of all persons recognized as
being met to an adequate extent and reasonable terms, or if by reason of the patentee's refusal to entitled to represent applicants before the Patent Office in the preparation and prosecution
grant a license on reasonable terms or by reason of the condition attached by him to the license, of applicants for patent. Registration in the Patent Office under the provisions of these rules
purchase or use of the patented article or working of the patented process or machine of production, shall only entitle the person registered to practice before the Patent Office.
the establishment of a new trade or industry in the Philippines is prevented; or if the patent or invention
relates to food or medicine or is necessary to public health or public safety. All these things involve the (a) Attorney at law. — Any attorney at law in good standing admitted to practice before any
applications of laws, legal principles, practice and procedure. They call for legal knowledge, training United States Court or the highest court of any State or Territory of the United States who
and experience for which a member of the bar has been prepared. fulfills the requirements and complied with the provisions of these rules may be admitted to
practice before the Patent Office and have his name entered on the register of attorneys.
In support of the proposition that much of the business and many of the act, orders and decisions of
the Patent Director involve questions of law or a reasonable and correct evaluation of facts, the very xxx xxx xxx
Patent Law, Republic Act No. 165, Section 61, provides that:

(c) Requirement for registration. — No person will be admitted to practice and register
. . . . The applicant for a patent or for the registration of a design, any party to a proceeding unless he shall apply to the Commissioner of Patents in writing on a prescribed form
to cancel a patent or to obtain a compulsory license, and any party to any other proceeding supplied by the Commissioner and furnish all requested information and material; and shall
in the Office may appeal to the Supreme Court from any final order or decision of the establish to the satisfaction of the Commissioner that he is of good moral character and of
director. good repute and possessed of the legal and scientific and technical qualifications necessary
to enable him to render applicants for patent valuable service, and is otherwise competent
In other words, the appeal is taken to this Tribunal. If the transaction of business in the Patent Office to advise and assist him in the presentation and prosecution of their application before the
and the acts, orders and decisions of the Patent Director involved exclusively or mostly technical and Patent Office. In order that the Commissioner may determine whether a person seeking to
scientific knowledge and training, then logically, the appeal should be taken not to a court or judicial have his name placed upon either of the registers has the qualifications specified,
body, but rather to a board of scientists, engineers or technical men, which is not the case. satisfactory proof of good moral character and repute, and of sufficient basic training in
scientific and technical matters must be submitted and an examination which is held from
time to time must be taken and passed. The taking of an examination may be waived in the
Another aspect of the question involves the consideration of the nature of the functions and acts of the case of any person who has served for three years in the examining corps of the Patent
Head of the Patent Office. Office.

. . . . The Commissioner, in issuing or withholding patents, in reissues, interferences, and Respondent states that the promulgation of the Rules of Practice of the United States Patent Office in
extensions, exercises quasi-judicial functions. Patents are public records, and it is the duty Patent Cases is authorized by the United States Patent Law itself, which reads as follows:
of the Commissioner to give authenticated copies to any person, on payment of the legal
fees. (40 Am. Jur. 537). (Emphasis supplied).
The Commissioner of Patents, subject to the approval of the Secretary of Commerce may
prescribe rules and regulations governing the recognition of agents, attorneys, or other
. . . . The Commissioner has the only original initiatory jurisdiction that exists up to the persons representing applicants or other parties before his office, and may require of such
granting and delivering of a patent, and it is his duty to decide whether the patent is new persons, agents, or attorneys, before being recognized as representatives of applicants or
and whether it is the proper subject of a patent; and his action in awarding or refusing a other persons, that they shall show they are of good moral character and in good repute,
patent is a judicial function. In passing on an application the commissioner should decide are possessed of the necessary qualifications to enable them to render to applicants or
not only questions of law, but also questions of fact, as whether there has been a prior other persons valuable service, and are likewise to competent to advise and assist
public use or sale of the article invented. . . . (60 C.J.S. 460). (Emphasis supplied). applicants or other persons in the presentation or prosecution of their applications or other
business before the Office. The Commissioner of Patents may, after notice and opportunity
for a hearing, suspend or exclude, either generally or in any particular case from further
The Director of Patents, exercising as he does judicial or quasi-judicial functions, it is reasonable to practice before his office any person, agent or attorney shown to be incompetent or
hold that a member of the bar, because of his legal knowledge and training, should be allowed to disreputable, or guilty of gross misconduct, or who refuses to comply with the said rules and
practice before the Patent Office, without further examination or other qualification. Of course, the regulations, or who shall, with intent to defraud in any matter, deceive, mislead, or threaten
Director of Patents, if he deems it advisable or necessary, may require that members of the bar any applicant or prospective applicant, or other person having immediate or prospective
practising before him enlist the assistance of technical men and scientist in the preparation of papers applicant, or other person having immediate or prospective business before the office, by
and documents, such as, the drawing or technical description of an invention or machine sought to be word, circular, letter, or by advertising. The reasons for any such suspension or exclusion
patented, in the same way that a lawyer filing an application for the registration of a parcel of land on shall be duly recorded. The action of the Commissioner may be reviewed upon the petition
behalf of his clients, is required to submit a plan and technical description of said land, prepared by a of the person so refused recognition or so suspended by the district court of the United
licensed surveyor. States for the District of Columbia under such conditions and upon such proceedings as the
said court may by its rules determine. (Emphasis supplied)
But respondent Director claims that he is expressly authorized by the law to require persons desiring to
practice or to do business before him to submit an examination, even if they are already members of
Respondent Director concludes that Section 78 of Republic Act No. 165 being similar to the provisions
of law just reproduced, then he is authorized to prescribe the rules and regulations requiring that
persons desiring to practice before him should submit to and pass an examination. We reproduce said
Section 78, Republic Act No. 165, for purposes of comparison:

SEC. 78. Rules and regulations. — The Director subject to the approval of the Secretary of
Justice, shall promulgate the necessary rules and regulations, not inconsistent with law, for
the conduct of all business in the Patent Office.

The above provisions of Section 78 certainly and by far, are different from the provisions of the United
States Patent Law as regards authority to hold examinations to determine the qualifications of those
allowed to practice before the Patent Office. While the U.S. Patent Law authorizes the Commissioner
of Patents to require attorneys to show that they possess the necessary qualifications and competence
to render valuable service to and advise and assist their clients in patent cases, which showing may
take the form of a test or examination to be held by the Commissioner, our Patent Law, Section 78, is
silent on this important point. Our attention has not been called to any express provision of our Patent
Law, giving such authority to determine the qualifications of persons allowed to practice before the
Patent Office.

Section 551 of the Revised Administrative Code authorizes every chief of bureau to prescribe forms
and make regulations or general orders not inconsistent with law, to secure the harmonious and
efficient administration of his branch of the service and to carry into full effect the laws relating to
matters within the jurisdiction of his bureau. Section 608 of Republic Act 1937, known as the Tariff and
Customs Code of the Philippines, provides that the Commissioner of Customs shall, subject to the
approval of the Department Head, makes all rules and regulations necessary to enforce the provisions
of said code. Section 338 of the National Internal Revenue Code, Commonwealth Act No. 466 as
amended, states that the Secretary of Finance, upon recommendation of the Collector of Internal
Revenue, shall promulgate all needful rules and regulations for the effective enforcement of the
provisions of the code. We understand that rules and regulations have been promulgated not only for
the Bureau of Customs and Internal Revenue, but also for other bureaus of the Government, to govern
the transaction of business in and to enforce the law for said bureaus.

Were we to allow the Patent Office, in the absence of an express and clear provision of law giving the
necessary sanction, to require lawyers to submit to and pass on examination prescribed by it before
they are allowed to practice before said Patent Office, then there would be no reason why other
bureaus specially the Bureau of Internal Revenue and Customs, where the business in the same area
are more or less complicated, such as the presentation of books of accounts, balance sheets, etc.,
assessments exemptions, depreciation, these as regards the Bureau of Internal Revenue, and the
classification of goods, imposition of customs duties, seizures, confiscation, etc., as regards the
Bureau of Customs, may not also require that any lawyer practising before them or otherwise
transacting business with them on behalf of clients, shall first pass an examination to qualify.

In conclusion, we hold that under the present law, members of the Philippine Bar authorized by this
Tribunal to practice law, and in good standing, may practice their profession before the Patent Office,
for the reason that much of the business in said office involves the interpretation and determination of
the scope and application of the Patent Law and other laws applicable, as well as the presentation of
evidence to establish facts involved; that part of the functions of the Patent director are judicial or
quasi-judicial, so much so that appeals from his orders and decisions are, under the law, taken to the
Supreme Court.

For the foregoing reasons, the petition for prohibition is granted and the respondent Director is hereby
prohibited from requiring members of the Philippine Bar to submit to an examination or tests and pass
the same before being permitted to appear and practice before the Patent Office. No costs.

Paras, C.J., Bengzon, Padilla, Reyes, A., Bautista Angelo, Labrador, Concepcion, Reyes, J.B.L. and
Endencia, JJ.,concur.
Republic of the Philippines WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, respondent Dionisio D. Ramos is severely REPRIMANDED
SUPREME COURT and warned that a repetition of the same overt act may warrant his suspencion or disbarment from the
Manila practice of law.

SECOND DIVISION It appearing that the hearing of this case has been unduly delayed, the Investigator of this Court is
directed forthwith to proceed with the hearing to terminate it as soon as possible. The request of
complainant to appear in the afore-mentioned hearing, assisted by her counsel, Atty. Jose U. Lontoc, is
A.M. No. 1053 September 7, 1979 hereby granted.

SANTA PANGAN, complainant SO ORDERED


vs.
ATTY. DIONISIO RAMOS, respondent,
Barredo, (Chairman), Concepcion Jr. and Abad Santos, JJ., concur.
RESOLUTION
Aquino, J., concur in the result.

Santos, is on leave.
ANTONIO, J.:

This has reference to the motion of complainant, Santa Pangan, to cite respondent Dionisio Ramos for
contempt. It appears from the record that on September 7, 1978 and March 13, 1979, the hearings in
this administrative case were postponed on the basis of respondent's motions for postponement.
These motions were predicated on respondent's allegations that on said dates he had a case set for
hearing before Branch VII, Court of First Instance of Manila, entitled People v. Marieta M. Isip (Criminal
Case No. 35906). Upon verification, the attorney of record of the accused in said case is one "Atty.
Pedro D.D. Ramos, 306 Dona Salud Bldg., Dasmarinas Manila." Respondent admits that he used the
name of "Pedro D.D. Ramos" before said court in connection with Criminal Case No. 35906, but avers
that he had a right to do so because in his Birth Certificate (Annex "A"), his name is "Pedro Dionisio
Ramos", and -his parents are Pedro Ramos and Carmen Dayaw, and that the D.D. in "Pedro D.D.
Ramos" is but an abbreviation of "Dionisio Dayaw his other given name and maternal surname.

This explanation of respondent is untenable. The name appearing in the "Roll of Attorneys" is "Dionisio
D. Ramos". The attorney's roll or register is the official record containing the names and signatures of
those who are authorized to practice law. A lawyer is not authorized to use a name other than the one
inscribed in the Roll of Attorneys in his practice of law.

The official oath obliges the attorney solemnly to swear that he will do no falsehood". As an officer in
the temple of justice, an attorney has irrefragable obligations of "truthfulness, candor and
frankness". 1 Indeed, candor and frankness should characterize the conduct of the lawyer at every
stage. This has to be so because the court has the right to rely upon him in ascertaining the truth. In
representing himself to the court as "Pedro D.D. Ramos" instead of "Dionisio D. Ramos", respondent
has violated his solemn oath.

The duty of an attorney to the courts to employ, for the purpose of maintaining the causes confided to
him, such means as are consistent with truth and honor cannot be overempahisized. These injunctions
circumscribe the general duty of entire devotion of the attorney to the client. As stated in a case, his I
nigh vocation is to correctly inform the court upon the law and the facts of the case, and to aid it in
doing justice and arriving at correct conclusions. He violates Ms oath of office ,when he resorts to
deception or permits his client to do so." 2

In using the name of' Pedro D.D. Ramos" before the courts instead of the name by which he was
authorized to practice law - Dionisio D. Ramos - respondent in effect resorted to deception. The
demonstrated lack of candor in dealing with the courts. The circumstance that this is his first aberration
in this regard precludes Us from imposing a more severe penalty.
Republic of the Philippines On 7 April 1989, Complainant Herve Dagpin in SBC No. 616, and Complainant
SUPREME COURT Moises Boquia in SBC No. 609 also filed a Motion for Reconsideration of our
Manila Resolution allowing respondent to take his oath. They alleged that respondent
had deliberately and maliciously excluded them in his Petition of 28 June 1988.
That, of course, is without merit considering that in his Petition of 28 June 1988,
EN BANC respondent had discussed said cases quite lengthily.

On 27 April 1989, Complainant Tan also manifested that Complainant Benjamin


Cabigon in BM No. 59 and Complainant Cornelio Agnis in SBC No. 624, had
B.M. No. 44 February 24, 1992 passed away so that they are in no position to submit their respective Comments.

EUFROSINA Y. TAN, complainant, One of the considerations we had taken into account in allowing respondent to
vs. take his oath, was a testimonial from the IBP Zamboanga del Norte Chapter,
NICOLAS EL. SABANDAL, respondent. dated 29 December 1986, certifying that respondent was "acting with morality
and has been careful in his actuations in the community."

SBC No. 609 February 24, 1992


Complainant Tan maintains that said IBP testimonial was signed only by the then
President of the IBP, Zamboanga del Norte Chapter, Atty. Senen O. Angeles,
MOISES B. BOQUIA, complainant, without authorization from the Board of Officers of said Chapter; and that Atty.
vs. Angeles was respondent's own counsel as well as the lawyer of respondent's
NICOLAS EL. SABANDAL, respondent. parents-in-law in CAR Case No. 347, Ozamiz City. Attached to Complainant's
Motion for Reconsideration was a Certification, dated 24 February 1989, signed
by the IBP Zamboanga del Norte Chapter President, Atty. Norberto L. Nuevas,
SBC No. 616 February 24, 1992
stating that "the present Board of Officers with the undersigned as President had
not issued any testimonial attesting to the good moral character and civic
HERVE DAGPIN, complainant, consciousness of Mr. Nicolas Sabandal."
vs.
NICOLAS EL. SABANDAL, respondent.
In his Comment, received by the Court on 27 March 1989, respondent states that
the IBP testimonial referred to by Complainant Tan must have been that signed
Nelbert T. Paculan for respondent. by the former IBP Zamboanga del Norte Chapter President, Atty. Senen O.
Angeles, addressed to the Chief Justice, dated 29 December 1986, and that he
himself had not submitted to the Court any certification from the IBP Zamboanga
Moises B. Boquia for himself and Herve Dagpin. del Norte Chapter Board of Officers of 1988-1989.

RESOLUTION Under the circumstances, the Court has deemed it best to require the present
Board of Officers of the IBP, Zamboanga del Norte Chapter, to MANIFEST
whether or not it is willing to give a testimonial certifying to respondent's good
moral character as to entitle him to take the lawyer's oath, and if not, the reason
therefor. The Executive Judge of the Regional Trial Court of Zamboanga del
MELENCIO-HERRERA, J.: Norte is likewise required to submit a COMMENT on respondent's moral fitness
to be a member of the Bar.
On 29 November 1983, * this Court sustained the charge of unauthorized practice of law filed against
respondent Sabandal and accordingly denied the latter's petition to be allowed to take the oath as Compliance herewith is required within ten (10) days from notice.
member of the Philippine Bar and to sign the Roll of Attorneys.
Pursuant to the aforesaid Resolution, Judge Pelagio R. Lachica, Executive Judge of the Regional Trial
From 1984-1988, Sabandal filed Motions for Reconsideration of the aforesaid Resolution, all of which Court of Zamboanga del Norte, filed his Comment, dated 4 August 1989, and received on 25 August
were either denied or "Noted without action." The Court, however, on 10 February 1989, after 1989, pertinently reading:
considering his plea for mercy and forgiveness, his willingness to reform and the several testimonials
attesting to his good moral character and civic consciousness, reconsidered its earlier Resolution and
finally allowed him to take the lawyer's oath "with the Court binding him to his assurance that he shall The undersigned, who is not well acquainted personally with the respondent, is
strictly abide by and adhere to the language, meaning and spirit of the Lawyer's Oath and the highest not aware of any acts committed by him as would disqualify him from admission
standards of the legal profession" (Yap Tan v. Sabandal, 10 February 1989, 170 SCRA 211). to the Bar. It might be relevant to mention, however, that there is Civil Case No.
3747 entitled Republic of the Philippines, Represented by the Director of Lands,
Plaintiff, versus Nicolas Sabandal, Register of Deeds of Zamboanga del Norte
However, before a date could be set for Sabandal's oath-taking, complainants Tan, Dagpin and Boquia and Rural Bank of Pinan, (Zamboanga del Norte), Inc., for Cancellation of Title
each filed separate motions for reconsideration of the Resolution of 10 February 1989. These were and/or Reversion pending in this Court in which said respondent, per complaint
acted upon in the Resolution of 4 July 1989 hereunder quoted, in part, for ready reference: filed by the Office of the Solicitor General, is alleged to have secured a free
patent and later a certificate of title to a parcel of land which, upon investigation,
turned out to be a swampland and not susceptible of acquisition under a free The above was "Noted" in the Resolution of 29 November 1990.
patent, and which he later mortgaged to the Rural Bank of Pinan (ZN) Inc. The
mortgage was later foreclosed and the land sold at public auction and
respondent has not redeemed the land until the present. (Emphasis Supplied) In compliance with the Resolution of 2 October 1990, Judge Pacifico M. Garcia, Regional Trial Court
Judge of Branch 8, Dipolog City (who apparently succeeded Judge Pelagio Lachica, the latter having
availed of optional retirement on 30 June 1990) submitted to this Court, on 17 December 1990, a copy
The IBP Zamboanga del Norte Chapter also submitted a Certification, dated 2 February 1990, signed of the "Judgment," dated 12 December 1990, in Civil Case 3747, entitled "Republic of the Philippines v.
by its Secretary Peter Y. Co and attested to by its President Gil L. Batula, to wit: Nicolas Sabandal et al" for Cancellation of Title and/or Reversion, which, according to him, was
already considered closed and terminated.
This is to certify that based on the certifications issued by the Office of the Clerk
of Court—Municipal Trial Court in the City of Dipolog; Regional Trial Court of Said judgment reveals that an amicable settlement, dated 24 October 1990, had been reached
Zamboanga del Norte and the Office of the Provincial and City Prosecutors, Mr. between the principal parties, approved by the Trial Court, and conformed to by the counsel for
Nicolas E. Sabandal has not been convicted of any crime, nor is there any defendant Rural Bank of Pinan.
pending derogatory criminal case against him. Based on the above findings, the
Board does not find any acts committed by the petitioner to disqualify him from
admission to the Philippine Bar. Briefly, the said amicable settlement cancelled the Original Certificate of Title under Free Patent in
Sabandal's name and the latter's mortgage thereof in favor of the Rural Bank of Pinan; provided for the
surrender of the certificate of title to the Register of Deeds for proper annotation; reverted to the mass
We required the complainants to comment on the aforesaid IBP Certification and to reply to Executive of public domain the land covered by the aforesaid Certificate of' Title with defendant Sabandal
Judge Pelagio Lachica's comment in our Resolution of 15 February 1990. refraining from exercising acts of possession or ownership over said land; caused the defendant
Sabandal to pay defendant Rural Bank of Pinan the sum of P35,000 for the loan and interest; and the
Rural Bank of Pinan to waive its cross-claims against defendant Nicolas Sabandal.
On 17 April 1990, after taking note of the unrelenting vehement objections of complainants Tan (in BM
44) and Boquia (in SBC 616) and the Certification by Executive Judge Lachica, dated 4 August 1989,
that there is a pending case before his Court involving respondent Sabandal, this Court resolved to Judge Pacifico Garcia's letter and the afore-mentioned Judgment were NOTED in our Resolution of 29
DEFER the setting of a date for the oath-taking of respondent Sabandal and required Judge Lachica to January 1991. In the same Resolution, complainants Tan, Boquia and Dagpin were required to
inform this Court of the outcome of the case entitled Republic v. Sabandal, (Civil Case 3747), pending comment on the same.
before his "Sala" as soon as resolved.
Upon request of Sabandal, a certification, dated 20 December 1990, was sent by Executive judge
In the meantime, on 18 April 1990, the Court received another Comment, dated 13 March 1990, by Jesus Angeles of the RTC of Zamboanga del Norte, certifying that Sabandal has no pending case with
complainant Herve Dagpin in SBC 609, vehemently objecting to the oath-taking of respondent his Court and that he has no cause to object to his admission to the Philippine Bar. This was "Noted" in
Sabandal and describing his actuations in Civil Case 3747 as manipulative and surreptitious. This the Resolution of 26 February 1991.
comment was Noted in the Resolution of 22 May 1990.
Meanwhile, Sabandal reiterated his prayer to be allowed to take the lawyer's oath in a Motion dated 8
In a letter, addressed to the Chief Justice, dated 15 August 1990, complainant Tan in Bar Matter 44, June 1991. In our Resolution of 1 August 1991, we deferred action on the aforesaid Motion pending
informed the Court that her relationship with Sabandal has "already been restored," as he had asked compliance by the complainants with the Resolution of 29 January 1991 requiring them to comment on
forgiveness for what has been done to her and that she finds no necessity in pursuing her case against the letter of Judge Pacifico M. Garcia.
him. Complainant Tan further stated that she sees no further reason to oppose his admission to the
Bar as he had shown sincere repentance and reformation which she believes make him morally fit to
become a member of the Philippine Bar. "In view of this development," the letter stated, "we highly To date, only complainant Tan has complied with the said Resolution by submitting a Comment, dated
recommend him for admission to the legal profession and request this Honorable Court to schedule his 29 August 1991, stating that the termination of Civil Case No. 3747 is "proof of Sabandal's sincere
oath-taking at a time most convenient." This letter was Noted in the Resolution of 2 October 1990, reformation, of his repentance with restitution of the rights of complainants he violated," and that "there
which also required a comment on Tan's letter from complainants Boquia and Dagpin. is no more reason to oppose his admission to the Bar." This was "Noted" in the Resolution of 24
September 1991.

Moises Boquia, for himself, and complainant Dagpin, in their comment, dated 5 November 1990, stated
thus: In a Manifestation, dated 6 December 1991, Sabandal reiterates his plea to be allowed to take the
Lawyer's Oath.

Eufrosina Yap Tan's letter dated 15 August 1990 is a private personal disposition
which raises the question whether personal forgiveness is enough basis to His plea must be DENIED.
exculpate and obliterate these cases. On our part, we believe and maintain the
importance and finality of the Honorable Supreme Court's resolutions in these In our Resolution of 10 February 1989, Sabandal was allowed to take the oath, ten (10) years having
cases. . . . elapsed from the time he took and passed the 1976 Bar examinations, after careful consideration of his
show of contrition and willingness to reform. Also taken cognizance of were the several testimonials
It is not within the personal competence, jurisdiction and discretion of any party to attesting to his good moral character and civic consciousness. At that time, we had not received the
change or amend said final resolutions which are already res judicata. Viewed in objections from complainant Tan to Sabandal's taking the oath nor were we aware of the gravity of the
the light of the foregoing final and executory resolutions, these cases therefore civil case against him.
should not in the least be considered as anything which is subject and
subservient to the changing moods and dispositions of the parties, devoid of any It turns out that Civil Case No. 3747 entitled "Republic of the Philippines v. Nicolas Sabandal" was
permanency or finality. Respondent's scheming change in tactics and strategy instituted by the Government in 1985 and was brought about because of respondent's procurement of
could not improve his case.
a certificate of free patent over a parcel of land belonging to the public domain and its use as security 859; In re Del Rosario, 52 Phil. 399 [1928]). It has also been held that no moral qualification for bar
for a mortgage in order to obtain a loan. At that time, Sabandal was an employee of the Bureau of membership is more important than truthfulness or candor (Fellner v. Bar Association of Baltimore City,
Lands. He did not submit any defense and was declared it default by order of the RTC dated 26 131 A. 2d 729).
November 1986. The controversy was eventually settled by mere compromise with respondent
surrendering the bogus certificate of title to the government and paying-off the mortgagor, "to buy
peace and forestall further expenses of litigation incurred by defendants" (Rollo, Judgment in Civil WHEREFORE, finding respondent Sabandal to be unfit to become a member of the BAR, this Court's
Case No. 3747). The Office of the Solicitor General interposed no objection to the approval of the said Resolution, dated 10 February 1989 is RECALLED and his prayer to be allowed to take the lawyer's
amicable settlement and prayed that judgment be rendered in accordance therewith, "as the amicable oath is hereby denied.
settlement may amount to a confession by the defendant" (Rollo, supra). It must also be stressed that
in 1985, at the time said case was instituted, Sabandal's petition to take the lawyer's oath had already SO ORDERED.
been denied on 29 November 1983 and he was then submitting to this Court motions for
reconsideration alleging his good moral character without, however, mentioning the pendency of that
civil case against him. Narvasa, C.J., Gutierrez, Jr., Cruz, Paras, Feliciano, Padilla, Bidin, Griño-Aquino, Medialdea,
Regalado, Davide, Jr., Romero and Nocon, JJ., concur.

In view of the nature of that case and the circumstances attending its termination, the Court now
entertains second thoughts about respondent's fitness to become a member of the Bar.

It should be recalled that Sabandal worked as Land Investigator at the Bureau of Lands. Said
employment facilitated his procurement of the free patent title over property which he could not but
have known was public land. This was manipulative on his part and does not speak well of his moral
character. It is a manifestation of gross dishonesty while in the public service, which can not be erased
by the termination of the case filed by the Republic against him where no determination of his guilt or
innocence was made because the suit had been compromised. Although as the Solicitor General had
pointed out, the amicable settlement was tantamount to a confession on his part. What is more, he
could not but have known of the intrinsic invalidity of his title and yet he took advantage of it by
securing a bank loan, mortgaging it as collateral, and notwithstanding the foreclosure of the mortgage
and the sale of the land at public auction, he did not lift a finger to redeem the same until the civil case
filed against him was eventually compromised. This is a sad reflection on his sense of honor and fair
dealing. His failure to reveal to this Court the pendency of the civil case for Reversion filed against him
during the period that he was submitting several Motions for Reconsideration before us also reveal his
lack of candor and truthfulness.

There are testimonials attesting to his good moral character, yes. But these were confined to lack of
knowledge of the pendency of any criminal case against him and were obviously made without
awareness of the facts and circumstances surrounding the case instituted by the Government against
him. Those testimonials can not, therefore, outweigh nor smother his acts of dishonesty and lack of
good moral character.

That the other complainants, namely, Moises Boquia (in SBC 606) and Herve Dagpin (in SBC 619)
have not submitted any opposition to his motion to take the oath, is of no moment. They have already
expressed their objections in their earlier comments. That complainant Tan has withdrawn her
objection to his taking the oath can neither tilt the balance in his favor, the basis of her complaint
treating as it does of another subject matter.

Time and again, it has been held that the practice of law is not a matter of right. It is a privilege
bestowed upon individuals who are not only learned in the law but who are also known to possess
good moral character:

The Supreme Court and the Philippine Bar have always tried to maintain a high
standard for the legal profession, both in academic preparation and legal training
as well as in honesty and fair dealing. The Court and the licensed lawyers
themselves are vitally interested in keeping this high standard; and one of the
ways of achieving this end is to admit to the practice of this noble profession only
those persons who are known to be honest and to possess good moral
character. . . . (In re Parazo, 82 Phil. 230).

Although the term "good moral character" admits of broad dimensions, it has been defined as
"including at least common honesty" (Royong v. Oblena, Adm. Case No. 376, April 30, 1963, 7 SCRA
Republic of the Philippines On November 7, 1958, Glicerio Aquino, private respondent, filed his Revocable
SUPREME COURT Permit Application over an area of 8,000 square meters, which was later found to
Manila cover a part of the first parcel already titled in favor of petitioner and of the third
parcel transferred to him by Suyo. On December 29, 1958, private respondent
Florentina Guanzon, Aquino's sister-in-law, also filed Revocable Permit
EN BANC Application over the second parcel.

A.M. No. 1892 July 29, 1988 Eventually, the conflicts were taken cognizance of by the Bureau of Lands (B.L.
Conflict No. 3-953, and B.L.O. Conflict No. 236). On May 21, 1962, the Director
ATTY. LUIS V. ARTIAGA JR., complainant, of Lands rendered a Decision against private respondents, as follows:
vs.
ATTY. ENRIQUE C. VILLANUEVA, respondent. WHEREFORE, it is ordered that the Revocable Permit
Application No. V-14105 of Glicerio Aquino be, as hereby it
is, rejected, forfeiting in favor of the Government whatever
amount has been paid on account thereof. The Revocable
Permit Application No. V-14142 of Florentina Guanzon
PER CURIAM: shall remain, as it is, rejected. Glicerio Aquino and
Florentina Guanzon shall vacate the land within sixty (60)
days from their receipt of a copy hereof The new Insular
In a sworn complaint filed with this Court on April 2, 1978, Atty. Luis V. Artiaga Jr. sought the
Government Property Sales Application of Julian Estolano
disbarment of Atty. Enrique C. Villanueva for alleged unethical practices.
shall be given due course after the survey of the land
covered thereby.'
By a resolution dated May 24, 1978, this Court required respondent Atty. Enrique C. Villanueva to
answer the complaint. To the answer of respondent dated July 5, 1978, complainant Atty. Luis V.
Private respondents moved for the reconsideration of the aforequoted Decision,
Artiaga Jr. filed his reply of July 31, 1978.
and the Director of Lands, in an Order of August 13, 1962, amended his previous
Decision as follows:
After considering the answer of respondent, this Court resolved to refer the case to the Solicitor
General for investigation, report and recommendation. The solicitor General forwarded to the Court his
WHEREFORE, our decision of May 21, 1962, is hereby
Report and Recommendation dated May 4, 1988 with the finding that respondent was guilty of
modified by awarding to protesting Glicerio Aquino
misconduct and with the recommendation that he be suspended from the practice of law for a period of
preferential right to that area actually occupied and
at least six (6) months.
cultivated by him, indicated as portion "K" in the sketch
drawn on the back hereof, and amending the Insular
The complaint for disbarment arose from four (4) separate cases and several incidental cases with Government Property Sales Application (New) of Juliano
Juliano Estolano, client of complainant Atty. Artiaga, Jr. and Glicerio Aquino and/or Florentina Estolano so as to exclude therefrom the said portion. With
Guanzon, clients of respondent Atty. Villanueva, as adversaries in all of these cases involving the this modification, the decision stands confirmed.
same property.
Petitioner and private respondents appealed the amended Decision of the
The factual background of these cases is summed up in the decision of the Court of Appeals in CA- Director of Lands to the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources who, in a
G.R. No. SP06600 dated November 16, 1977, a petition for certiorari and prohibition, an offshoot of Decision dated September 9, 1963, dismissed the appeals of private
Civil Case No. 183-C for Recovery of Possession filed by Estolano against Aquino and Guanzon respondents, set aside the Order of the Director of Lands dated August 13, 1962,
before the Court of First Instance of Laguna, Branch VI on June 11, 1974. Quoted hereunder are and affirmed the latter's Decision of May 21, 1962. Respondent Guanzon moved
pertinent portions of the Court's decision: for the reconsideration of the Secretary's Decision but said Motion was denied.

There were three parcels of land involved herein. All continuos and adjoining to Respondent Aquino appealed the Decision of the Secretary of Agriculture and
each other and located in Bambang, Los Banos, Laguna. The first covered an Natural Resources to the Office of the President of the Philippines, which
area of 2.6793 hectares; the second, an area of one hectare; and the third, an likewise affirmed the Decision appealed from.
area of one-half hectare. On July 20,1950, petitioner Juliano Estolano was issued
original Certificate of Title No. P-286 in his name over the first parcel. There is no
The Decision of the Director of Lands having become final, an order of Execution
controversy, therefore, in respect of this first parcel, the dispute being confined to
thereof was issued on January 4, 1967, but this notwithstanding, private
the second and third parcels.
respondents remained in possession of the subject property. For failure to obtain
possession thereof, petitioner filed, on June 15, 1974, the principal case, (Civil
The second and third parcels were the object of Revocable Permit Applications Case No. 183-C) in the lower court which eventually gave rise to the proceedings
by Paciano Malabayabas and Canuto Suyo, both filed on March 31, 1951. On now challenged in this Petition." (pp. 3-7, Decision in CA-G.R. No. Sp-06600)
June 12, 1956, Canuto transferred his right over the third parcel to petitioner. On
March 4, 1958, Malabayabas also sold his rights over the second parcel to
The restraining order issued in Civil Case No. 183-C on October 27, 1976 enjoining the Director of
petitioner. On May 15, 1958, petitioner filed Insular Government Property Sales
Lands from enforcing the Order of Execution was set aside by the Court of Appeals and the writ of
Application No. 1772 (New) covering the second and third parcels.
prohibition prayed for by petitioner Estolano was granted.
Meanwhile, on April 13, 1974, respondent's clients, Aquino and Guanzon, filed a complaint for forcible honor cannot be overemphasized. 5 His high vocation is to correctly inform the court upon the law and
entry against complainant's client, Estolano, in the Municipal Court of Los Banos Laguna docketed as the facts of the case, and to aid it in doing justice and arriving at correct conclusions. He violated his
Civil Case No. 192. This case was dismissed by the Municipal Court on January 5, 1977. On appeal to oath of office when he resorted to deception. 6 Worse, he had caused his client to perjure himself thus
the Court of First Instance (CFI), the order of dismissal was affirmed on November 4, 1979 in Civil subjecting the latter to criminal prosecution for perjury brought before the Municipal Court of Los
Case No. 386-C. No appeal was interposed from this decision, thus it became final. Banos, Laguna. 7 Instead of safeguarding the interests of his client as his responsibility dictates, he did
exactly the opposite by causing his client to commit a felony.
The third case for annulment of Estolano's title over the same land was filed by respondent's client,
Aquino, with the CFI on May 15, 1974 docketed as Civil Case No. 179-C which was dismissed on April From the foregoing, the lack of candor of respondent counsel towards the court is evident. This lack of
23, 1976. On appeal to the Court of Appeals which was docketed as CA-G.R. No. 62576-R, the candor and honesty to the courts and his adversary is further demonstrated by other acts of
dismissal by the trial court was affirmed on June 25, 1981. On October 21, 1981, the case was respondent.
remanded to the trial court for execution.
In Civil Case No. 192, respondent's clients were restored to the possession of the 2-1/2 hectares of the
Finally, while their petition for certiorari and prohibition over Civil Case No. 183-C was pending before untitled portion of subject property by virtue of a writ of preliminary mandatory injunction issued by the
the Court of Appeals, respondent's clients, Aquino, filed a complaint with the Court of Agrarian court on May 21, 1974 upon filing of a property bond by respondent. Upon the dismissal of the case on
Relations (CAR) at San Pablo City docketed as CAR Case No. 7043 against Estolano and the Director January 5, 1977, the writ of preliminary mandatory injunction was dissolved and respondent's clients
of Lands on July 1, 1977. On July 2, 1977, the CAR issued an order requiring Estolano to respect were ordered to restore possession of subject property to complainant's client Estolano. However,
Aquino's possession. On May 18, 1979, the CAR dismissed the case and on appeal, its dismissal was respondent blocked the order by filing an urgent ex-parte motion seeking clarification as to whether the
affirmed in a decision of the Court of Appeals dated February 5, 1981 in CA-G.R. No. 11635-CAR. dispositive portion of the order of January 5, 1977 was immediately executory and asking the court to
allow his clients to remain in the meantime in the premises. Before the court could even resolve the
motion, respondent perfected his appeal from the order of January 5, 1977 on January 25, 1977. Thus,
Respondent Atty. Enrique C. Villanueva is charged with the following unethical practices: (1) That when the court's order affirming its previous order came out on January 26,1977, the Provincial Sheriff
respondent had caused his client to perjure himself; (2) That he lacks candor and respect toward his of Laguna refused to implement the orders of January 5 and 26, 1977 until the appeal has been finally
adversary and the courts; and (3) That he had been abusive of the right of recourse to the courts. disposed of. On appeal, the CFI of Laguna, affirmed the questioned orders of the Municipal Court.
When the decision of the CFI became final because respondent failed to appeal, his clients refused to
We find respondent Atty. Villanueva guilty as above charged. abide by the Order of Execution issued by the Municipal Court.

Anent the first charge, the complaint and amended complaint for forcible entry in Civil Case No. 192 Consequently, Estolano filed an ex-parte motion asking that the Provincial Sheriff be authorized to
filed by respondent's client are clear proofs that respondent had indeed caused his client Glicerio forcibly evict respondent's clients. On the date set for the hearing of the motion, respondent did not
Aquino to perjure himself as to the date he lost possession of the subject property so as to place the appear and instead filed his "Opposition/ Manifestation" informing the court of a petition for certiorari
case within the jurisdiction of the court. filed against the presiding judge before the Court of First Instance of Laguna. In deference to this
petition, the Municipal Court resolved to hold in abeyance theex-parte motion of Estolano until
resolution of said petition.
Paragraph 5 of the original complaint filed on April 18, 1974 reads:

Indeed, the manner in which respondent counsel handled the forcible entry case filed against the client
5. That sometime in the early part of 1960, defendant Julian Estolano was able to of complainant shows his total lack of candor and respect for the courts and the rights of his adversary.
dispossess plaintiffs spouses Glicerio Aquino and Lorenzo Magpantay of a He had employed every step necessary to forestall complainant's client from taking rightful possession
portion of the above-described parcel of land ... (Emphasis supplied.) 1 of subject property. He has shown utter disregard of the proper rules of procedure to suit his purpose.
While he filed his urgent ex-partemotion for clarification, he chose not to wait for its resolution and
instead perfected his appeal to the Court of First Instance. When finally the decision became executory
Paragraph 5 of the Amended Complaint dated June 19, 1974 reads:
because of his failure to appeal to the Court of Appeals, he filed a petition for certiorari against the
decision of the CFI which petition is obviously frivolous and a mere tactic to delay enforcement of the
5. That sometime in the early part of June, 1973, defendant Julian Estolano and court's decision. In the meantime, the clients of respondents refused to obey the order of execution.
Segundo de los Santos unlawfully dispossessed and/or deprived or turned out
plaintiffs Sps. Aquino and Magpantay thru stealth, strategy, force and intimidation
A lawyer should obey all lawful orders and rulings of the court. 8 He should have counseled his clients
of and/or possession over a certain portion (now caused by defendant Segundo
to submit to the order of the court instead of encouraging them to resist such order. The actuations of
de los Santos to be planted to bananas now of less than a year old as of the filing
respondent of employing dilatory tactics by filing a clearly frivolous case amounts to obstruction of the
of the original complaint) located on the southern portion of their above-described
administration of justice which constitutes misconduct and justifies disciplinary action against him. 9
landholding . .... (Emphasis supplied. )2

Respondents counsel further demonstrated his questionable motive by filing another case, this time for
In the original complaint, respondent's client alleged that he was dispossessed of the subject land in
annulment of the title of complainant's client to the other 2-1/2 hectares of subject land with the Court
1960, while in the amended complaint, he alleged it was in June, 1973. Clearly, this was a ploy
of First Instance of Laguna, Branch VI. This case was dismissed on the ground of res judicata and
concocted by respondent to enable the court to acquire jurisdiction over the case since a forcible entry
prescription. Respondent appealed this ruling to the Court of Appeals where it was pending resolution
case must be filed within one year from the accrual of the cause of action under Rule 70, Section 1.
at the time the instant complaint for disbarment was filed. The decision of the trial court was affirmed
and remanded to the lower court for execution.
Such action of respondent counsel is a clear violation of his oath that "he will do no falsehood nor
consent to the doing of any in court." 3 A legal counsel is of course expected to defend his client's
Not satisfied with the above-mentioned appeal, respondent counsel brought another case against
cause with zeal, but not at the disregard of the truth. 4 The duty of an attorney to the courts to employ,
complainant's client this time before the Court of Agrarian Relations (CAR Case No. 7043) for
for the purpose of maintaining the causes confided to him, such means as are consistent with truth and
determination allegedly of who had a better right over the subject property when he was well aware e
of the absence of any tenancy relationship between the parties.

An examination of the records shows that respondent did not disclose before the Court of Agrarian
Relations (CAR) prior law suits and decisions rendered relative to the subject land. As a result,
respondent was able to secure ex-parte from the CAR a restraining order against the Director of Lands
and Estolano on July 2, 1977. So when the decision of the Court of First Instance of Laguna in Civil
Case No. 386-C affirming the decision of the trial court in the forcible entry case No. 192 was rendered
on November 4, 1977 ordering the immediate restoration of subject land to Estolano, because of the
restraining order issued by the agrarian court, the execution of the said decision cannot be fully
satisfied, To make matters worse, respondent even filed a criminal complaint against complainant and
his client, among others, for alleged violation of P.D. 316 and the restraining order issued by the Court
of Agrarian Relations in CAR Case No. 7043. 10 The CAR dismissed this case and on appeal, the
dismissal was affirmed.

We also note that after respondent filed the case with the CAR on July 1, 1 977, he filed on July 5,
1977 in Civil Case No. 179-C before the CFI of Laguna, a motion to dismiss the present action without
prejudice to his clients' right to prosecute their present action with the Court of Agrarian Relations. The
lower court denied the motion since it had already dismissed the case on some other ground and their
appeal was already perfected without plaintiffs' manifesting that they are abandoning their appeal.
Thus, respondent was able to elevate two (2) separate appeals--CA-G.R. No. 62576-R re: annulment
of title (Civil Case No. 179-C) and CA-G.R. No. 11635-CAR arising from the CAR Case No. 7043,
before the Court of Appeals over the same issues involving the same subject property titled to
Estolano.

The cause of respondent's clients is obviously bereft of merit. Respondent was aware of this fact so he
resorted to forum shopping, continuously seeking the court where he may possibly obtain favorable
judgment, thereby adding to the already clogged dockets of the courts with the unmeritorious cases he
filed. He grossly abused his right of recourse to the courts by filing multiple petitions or complaints for a
cause that had been previously rejected in the false hope of getting some favorable action, somehow,
thus, obstructing the administration of justice.11 He was derelict in his duty as counsel to maintain such
actions or proceedings only as appears to him to be just, and such defenses only as he believes to be
honestly debatable under the law.12 He had thus prostituted his office at the expense of justice.

The practice of law is a privilege accorded only to those who measure up to certain standards of
mental and moral fitness. 13 For a counsel who has been sworn to assist in the administration of justice
and to uphold the rule of law, respondent has miserably failed to live up to the standards expected of a
member of the Bar. Instead of assisting in the speedy disposition of cases, he made a mockery of our
system of justice, thus deserving to be censured and penalized by this Court. No doubt, respondent is
guilty of gross misconduct in office.

WHEREFORE, the respondent is hereby SUSPENDED INDEFINITELY from the practice of law from
date of notice until such time that he can demonstrate to the court that he has rehabilitated himself and
deserves to resume the practice of law. Let this decision be noted in the bar records of respondent.

SO ORDERED.

Fernan, C.J., Narvasa, Melencio-Herrera, Gutierrez, Jr., Cruz, Paras, Feliciano, Gancayco, Padilla,
Bidin, Sarmiento, Cortes, Griño-Aquino and Medialdea, JJ., concur.
EN BANC 5. No local custom prohibits the continued use of a deceased partner’s name in a professional firm’s
name; 6 there is no custom or usage in the Philippines, or at least in the Greater Manila Area, which
[G.R. No. X92-1. July 30, 1979.] recognizes that the name of a law firm necessarily identifies the individual members of the firm. 7

PETITION FOR AUTHORITY TO CONTINUE USE OF THE FIRM NAME "SYCIP, SALAZAR, 6. The continued use of a deceased partner’s name in the firm name of law partnerships has been
FELICIANO, HERNANDEZ & CASTILLO." LUCIANO E. SALAZAR, FLORENTINO P, FELICIANO, consistently allowed by U.S. Courts and is an accepted practice in the legal profession of most
BENILDO G. HERNANDEZ. GREGORIO R. CASTILLO. ALBERTO P. SAN JUAN, JUAN C. REYES, countries in the world. 8
JR., ANDRES G. GATMAITAN, JUSTINO H. CACANINDIN, NOEL A. LAMAN, ETHELWOLDO E.
FERNANDEZ, ANGELITO C. IMPERIO, EDUARDO R. CENIZA, TRISTAN A. CATINDIG, ANCHETA The question involved in these Petitions first came under consideration by this Court in 1953 when a
K. TAN, and ALICE V. PESIGAN, petitioners. law firm in Cebu (the Dean case) continued its practice of including in its firm name that of a deceased
partner, C.D. Johnston. The matter was resolved with this Court advising the firm to desist from
IN THE MATTER OF THE PETITION FOR AUTHORITY TO CONTINUE USE OF THE FIRM NAME including in their firm designation the name of C. D. Johnston, "who has long been dead."cralaw
"OZAETA, ROMULO, DE LEON, MABANTA & REYES." RICARDO J. ROMULO, BENJAMIN M. DE virtua1aw library
LEON, ROMAN MABANTA, JR., JOSE MA. REYES, JESUS S. J. SAYOC, EDUARDO DE LOS
ANGELES, and JOSE F. BUENAVENTURA, petitioners. The same issue was raised before this Court in 1958 as an incident in G. R. No. L-11964, entitled
Register of Deeds of Manila v. China Banking Corporation. The law firm of Perkins & Ponce Enrile
moved to intervene as amicus curiae. Before acting thereon, the Court, in a Resolution of April 15,
RESOLUTION 1957, stated that it "would like to be informed why the name of Perkins is still being used although Atty.
E. A. Perkins is already dead." In a Manifestation dated May 21, 1957, the law firm of Perkins and
Ponce Enrile, raising substantially the same arguments as those now being raised by petitioners,
MELENCIO-HERRERA, J.: prayed that the continued use of the firm name "Perkins & Ponce Enrile" be held proper.

On June 16, 1958, this Court resolved:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph


Two separate Petitions were filed before this Court 1) by the surviving partners of Atty. Alexander
Sycip, who died on May 5, 1975, and 2) by the surviving partners of Atty. Herminio Ozaeta, who died "After carefully considering the reasons given by Attorneys Alfonso Ponce Enrile and Associates for
on February 14, 1976, praying that they be allowed to continue using, in the names of their firms, the their continued use of the name of the deceased E. G. Perkins, the Court found no reason to depart
names of partners who had passed away. In the Court’s Resolution of September 2, 1976, both from the policy it adopted in June 1953 when it required Attorneys Alfred P. Deen and Eddy A. Deen of
Petitions were ordered consolidated.chanrobles.com.ph : virtual law library Cebu City to desist from including in their firm designation, the name of C. D. Johnston, deceased. The
Court believes that, in view of the personal and confidential nature of the relations between attorney
Petitioners base their petitions on the following arguments:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library and client and the high standards demanded in the canons of professional ethics, no practice should
be allowed which even in a remote degree could give rise to the possibility of deception. Said attorneys
1. Under the law, a partnership is not prohibited from continuing its business under a firm name which are accordingly advised to drop the name "PERKINS" from their firm name."cralaw virtua1aw library
includes the name of a deceased partner; in fact, Article 1840 of the Civil Code explicitly sanctions the
practice when it provides in the last paragraph that:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph Petitioners herein now seek a re-examination of the policy thus far enunciated by the Court.

"The use by the person or partnership continuing the business of the partnership name, or the name of The Court finds no sufficient reason to depart from the rulings thus laid down.
a deceased partner as part thereof, shall not of itself make the individual property of the deceased
partner liable for any debts contracted by such person or partnership." 1 A. Inasmuch as "Sycip, Salazar, Feliciano, Hernandez and Castillo" and "Ozaeta, Romulo, De Leon,
Mabanta and Reyes" are partnerships, the use in their partnership names of the names of deceased
2. In regulating other professions, such as accountancy and engineering, the legislature has authorized partners will run counter to Article 1815 of the Civil Code which provides:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph
the adoption of firm names without any restriction as to the use, in such firm name, of the name of a
deceased partner; 2 the legislative authorization given to those engaged in the practice of accountancy "Art. 1815. Every partnership shall operate under a firm name, which may or may not include the name
— a profession requiring the same degree of trust and confidence in respect of clients as that implicit in of one or more of the partners.
the relationship of attorney and client — to acquire and use a trade name, strongly indicates that there
is no fundamental policy that is offended by the continued use by a firm of professionals of a firm name "Those who, not being members of the partnership include their names in the firm name, shall be
which includes the name of a deceased partner, at least where such firm name has acquired the subject to the liability of a partner."cralaw virtua1aw library
characteristics of a "trade name." 3
It is clearly tacit in the above provision that names in a firm name of a partnership must either be those
3. The Canons of Professional Ethics are not transgressed by the continued use of the name of a of living partners and, in the case of non-partners, should be living persons who can be subjected to
deceased partner in the firm name of a law partnership because Canon 33 of the Canons of liability. In fact, Article 1825 of the Civil Code prohibits a third person from including his name in the
Professional Ethics adopted by the American Bar Association declares that:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph firm name under pain of assuming the liability of a partner. The heirs of a deceased partner in a law
firm cannot be held liable as the old members to the creditors of a firm particularly where they are non-
". . . The continued use of the name of a deceased or former partner when permissible by local lawyers. Thus, Canon 34 of the Canons of Professional Ethics "prohibits all agreement for the payment
custom, is not unethical, but care should be taken that no imposition or deception is practiced through to the widow and heirs of a deceased lawyer of a percentage, either gross or net, of the fees received
this use. . . ." 4 from the future business of the deceased lawyer’s clients, both because the recipients of such division
are not lawyers and because such payments will not represent service or responsibility on the part of
4. There is no possibility of imposition or deception because the deaths of their respective deceased the recipient." Accordingly, neither the widow nor the heirs can be held liable for transactions entered
partners were well-publicized in all newspapers of general circulation for several days; the stationeries into after the death of their lawyer-predecessor. There being no benefits accruing, there can be no
now being used by them carry new letterheads indicating the years when their respective deceased corresponding liability.chanrobles law library : red
partners were connected with the firm; petitioners will notify all leading national and international law
directories of the fact of their respective deceased partners’ deaths. 5 Prescinding the law, there could be practical objections to allowing the use by law firms of the names
of deceased partners. The public relations value of the use of an old firm name can tend to create
undue advantages and disadvantages in the practice of the profession. An able lawyer without current business methods of advertising and encroachment on their practice, or dealing directly with
connections will have to make a name for himself starting from scratch. Another able lawyer, who can their clients." 13
join an old firm, can initially ride on that old firm’s reputation established by deceased partners.
"The right to practice law is not a natural or constitutional right but is in the nature of a privilege or
B. In regards to the last paragraph of Article 1840 of the Civil Code cited by petitioners, supra, the first franchise. 14 It is limited to persons of good moral character with special qualifications duly ascertained
factor to consider is that it is within Chapter 3 of Title IX of the Code entitled "Dissolution and Winding and certified. 15 The right does not only presuppose in its possessor integrity, legal standing and
Up." The Article primarily deals with the exemption from liability in cases of a dissolved partnership, of attainment, but also the exercise of a special privilege, highly personal and partaking of the nature of a
the individual property of the deceased partner for debts contracted by the person or partnership which public trust." 16
continues the business using the partnership name or the name of the deceased partner as part
thereof. What the law contemplates therein is a hold-over situation preparatory to formal D. Petitioners cited Canon 33 of the Canons of Professional Ethics of the American Bar Association 17
reorganization. in support of their petitions.

Secondly, Article 1840 treats more of a commercial partnership with a good will to protect rather than It is true that Canon 33 does not consider as unethical the continued use of the name of a deceased or
of a professional partnership, with no saleable good will but whose reputation depends on the personal former partner in the firm name of a law partnership when such a practice is permissible by local
qualifications of its individual members. Thus, it has been held that a saleable goodwill can exist only in custom but the Canon warns that care should be taken that no imposition or deception is practiced
a commercial partnership and cannot arise in a professional partnership consisting of lawyers. 9 through this use.

"As a general rule, upon the dissolution of a commercial partnership the succeeding partners or parties It must be conceded that in the Philippines, no local custom permits or allows the continued use of a
have the right to carry on the business under the old name, in the absence of a stipulation forbidding it, deceased or former partner’s name in the firm names of law partnerships. Firm names, under our
(s)ince the name of a commercial partnership is a partnership asset inseparable from the good will of custom, identify the more active and/or more senior members or partners of the law firm. A glimpse at
the firm . . .." (60 Am Jur 2d, s 204, p. 115) (Emphasis supplied) the history of the firms of petitioners and of other law firms in this country would show how their firm
names have evolved and changed from time to time as the composition of the partnership changed.
On the other hand,
"The continued use of a firm name after the death of one or more of the partners designated by it is
". . . a professional partnership the reputation of which depends on the individual skill of the members, proper only where sustained by local custom and not where by custom this purports to identify the
such as partnerships of attorneys or physicians, has no good will to be distributed us a firm asset on its active members. . . .
dissolution, however intrinsically valuable such skill and reputation may be, especially where there is
no provision in the partnership agreement relating to good will as an asset. . . ." (ibid, s 203, p. 115) "There would seem to be a question, under the working of the Canon, as to the propriety of adding the
(Emphasis supplied). name of a new partner and at the same time retaining that of a deceased partner who was never a
partner with the new one." (H.S. Drinker, op. cit., supra, at pp. 207-208) (Emphasis supplied)
C. A partnership for the practice of law cannot be likened to partnerships formed by other professionals
or for business. For one thing, the law on accountancy specifically allows the use of a trade name in The possibility of deception upon the public, real or consequential, where the name of a deceased
connection with the practice of accountancy. 10 partner continues to be used cannot be ruled out. A person in search of legal counsel might be guided
by the familiar ring of a distinguished name appearing in a firm title.
"A partnership for the practice of law is not a legal entity. It is a mere relationship or association for a
particular purpose. . . . It is not a partnership formed for the purpose of carrying on trade or business or E. Petitioners argue that U.S. Courts have consistently avowed the continued use of a deceased
of holding property." 11 Thus, it has been stated that "the use of a nom de plume, assumed or trade partner’s name in the firm name of law partnerships. But that is so because it is sanctioned by custom.
name in law practice is improper." 12
In the case of Mendelsohn v. Equitable Life Assurance Society (33 N.Y.S. 2d 733) which petitioners
"The usual reason given for different standards of conduct being applicable to the practice of law from Salazar, Et. Al. quoted in their memorandum, the New York Supreme Court sustained the use of the
those pertaining to business is that the law is a ‘profession.’ . . . firm name Alexander & Green even if none of the present ten partners of the firm bears either name
because the practice was sanctioned by custom and did not offend any statutory provision or
"Dean Pound, in his recently published contribution to the Survey of the Legal Profession, (The Lawyer legislative policy and was adopted by agreement of the parties The Court stated
from Antiquity to Modern Times, p. 5) defines a profession as ‘a group of men pursuing a learned art as therein:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph
a common calling in the spirit of public service, — no less a public service because it may incidentally
be a means of livelihood.’ "The practice sought to be proscribed has the sanction of custom and offends no statutory provision or
legislative policy. Canon 33 of the Canons of Professional Ethics of both the American Bar Association
x x x and the New York State Bar Association provides in part as follows: ‘The continued use of the name of
a deceased or former partner, when permissible by local custom is not unethical, but care should be
taken that no imposition or deception is practiced through this use.’ There is no question as to local
"Primary characteristics which distinguish the legal profession from business are:chanrob1es virtual custom. Many firms in the city use the names of deceased members with the approval of other
1aw library attorneys, bar associations and the courts. The Appellate Division of the First Department has
considered the matter and reached the conclusion that such practice should not be prohibited.
1. A duty of public service, of which the emolument is a by-product, and in which one may attain the (Emphasis supplied)
highest eminence without making much money.
x x x
2. A relation as an ‘officer of court’ to the administration of justice involving thorough sincerity, integrity,
and reliability.
"Neither the Partnership Law nor the Penal Law prohibits the practice in question. The use of the firm
3. A relation to clients in the highest degree fiduciary. name herein is also sustainable by reason of agreement between the partners." 18

4. A relation to colleagues at the bar characterized by candor, fairness, and unwillingness to resort to Not so in this jurisdiction where there is no local custom that sanctions the practice. Custom has been
defined as a rule of conduct formed by repetition of acts, uniformly observed (practiced) as a social
rule, legally binding and obligatory. 19 Courts take no judicial notice of custom. A custom must be
proved as a fact, according to the rules of evidence. 20 A local custom as a source of right cannot be
considered by a court of justice unless such custom is properly established by competent evidence like
any other fact. 21 We find such proof of the existence of a local custom. and of the elements requisite
to constitute the same, wanting herein. Merely because something is done as a matter of practice does
not mean that Courts can rely on the same for purposes of adjudication as a juridical custom. Juridical
custom must be differentiated from social custom. The former can supplement statutory law or be
applied in the absence of such statute. Not so with the latter.

Moreover, judicial decisions applying or interpreting the laws form part of the legal system. 22 When
the Supreme Court in the Deen and Perkins cases issued its Resolutions directing lawyers to desist
from including the names of deceased partners in their firm designation, it laid down a legal rule
against which no custom or practice to the contrary, even if proven, can prevail. This is not to speak of
our civil law which clearly ordains that a partnership is dissolved by the death of any partner. 23
Customs which are contrary to law, public order or public policy shall not be countenanced. 24

The practice of law is intimately and peculiarly related to the administration of justice and should not be
considered like an ordinary "money-making trade."cralaw virtua1aw library

". . . It is of the essence of a profession that it is practiced in a spirit of public service.’A trade’ . . .’aims
primarily at personal gain; a profession at the exercise of powers beneficial to mankind.’ If, as in the
era of wide free opportunity, we think of free competitive self assertion as the highest good, lawyer and
grocer and farmer may seem to be freely competing with their fellows in their calling in order each to
acquire as much of the world’s good as he may within the limits allowed him by law. But the member of
a profession does not regard himself as in competition with his professional brethren. He is not
bartering his services as is the artisan nor exchanging the products of his skill and learning as the
farmer sells wheat or corn. There should be no such thing as a lawyers or physicians’ strike. The best
service of the professional man is often rendered for no equivalent or for a trifling equivalent and it is
his pride to do what he does in a way worthy of his profession even if done with no expectation of
reward. This spirit of public service in which the profession of law is and ought to be exercised is a
prerequisite of sound administration of justice according to law. The other two elements of a
profession, namely, organization and pursuit of a learned art have their justification in that they secure
and maintain that spirit."25cralaw:red

In fine, petitioners’ desire to preserve the identity of their firms in the eyes of the public must bow to
legal and ethical impediments.

ACCORDINGLY, the petitions filed herein are denied and petitioners advised to drop the names
"SYCIP" and "OZAETA" from their respective firm names. Those names may, however, be included in
the listing of individuals who have been partners in their firms indicating the years during which they
served as such.chanrobles.com.ph : virtual law library

SO ORDERED.

Teehankee, Concepcion Jr., Santos, Fernandez, Guerrero and De Castro, JJ., concur.

Fernando, C.J. and Abad-Santos, J., took no part.


Republic of the Philippines The authority of the IBP Board of Governors to recommend to the Supreme Court the removal of a
SUPREME COURT delinquent member's name from the Roll of Attorneys is found in par. 2 Section 24, Article Ill of the IBP
Manila By-Laws (supra), whereas the authority of the Court to issue the order applied for is found in Section
10 of the Court Rule, which reads:
EN BANC
SEC. 10. Effect of non-payment of dues. — Subject to the provisions of Section
12 of this Rule, default in the payment of annual dues for six months shall
A.M. No. 1928 August 3, 1978 warrant suspension of membership in the Integrated Bar, and default in such
payment for one year shall be a ground for the removal of the name of the
In the Matter of the IBP Membership Dues Delinquency of Atty. MARCIAL A. EDILION (IBP delinquent member from the Roll of Attorneys.
Administrative Case No. MDD-1)
The all-encompassing, all-inclusive scope of membership in the IBP is stated in these words of the
RESOLUTION Court Rule:

SECTION 1. Organization. — There is hereby organized an official national body


to be known as the 'Integrated Bar of the Philippines,' composed of all persons
whose names now appear or may hereafter be included in the Roll of Attorneys
CASTRO, C.J.: of the Supreme Court.

The respondent Marcial A. Edillon is a duly licensed practicing attorney in the Philippines. The obligation to pay membership dues is couched in the following words of the Court Rule:

On November 29, 1975, the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP for short) Board of Governors SEC. 9. Membership dues. Every member of the Integrated Bar shall pay such
unanimously adopted Resolution No. 75-65 in Administrative Case No. MDD-1 (In the Matter of the annual dues as the Board of Governors shall determine with the approval of the
Membership Dues Delinquency of Atty. Marcial A. Edillon) recommending to the Court the removal of Supreme Court. ...
the name of the respondent from its Roll of Attorneys for "stubborn refusal to pay his membership
dues" to the IBP since the latter's constitution notwithstanding due notice.
The core of the respondent's arguments is that the above provisions constitute an invasion of his
constitutional rights in the sense that he is being compelled, as a pre-condition to maintaining his
On January 21, 1976, the IBP, through its then President Liliano B. Neri, submitted the said resolution status as a lawyer in good standing, to be a member of the IBP and to pay the corresponding dues,
to the Court for consideration and approval, pursuant to paragraph 2, Section 24, Article III of the By- and that as a consequence of this compelled financial support of the said organization to which he is
Laws of the IBP, which reads: admittedly personally antagonistic, he is being deprived of the rights to liberty and property guaranteed
to him by the Constitution. Hence, the respondent concludes, the above provisions of the Court Rule
and of the IBP By-Laws are void and of no legal force and effect.
.... Should the delinquency further continue until the following June 29, the Board
shall promptly inquire into the cause or causes of the continued delinquency and
take whatever action it shall deem appropriate, including a recommendation to The respondent similarly questions the jurisdiction of the Court to strike his name from the Roll of
the Supreme Court for the removal of the delinquent member's name from the Attorneys, contending that the said matter is not among the justiciable cases triable by the Court but is
Roll of Attorneys. Notice of the action taken shall be sent by registered mail to rather of an "administrative nature pertaining to an administrative body."
the member and to the Secretary of the Chapter concerned.

The case at bar is not the first one that has reached the Court relating to constitutional issues that
On January 27, 1976, the Court required the respondent to comment on the resolution and letter inevitably and inextricably come up to the surface whenever attempts are made to regulate the practice
adverted to above; he submitted his comment on February 23, 1976, reiterating his refusal to pay the of law, define the conditions of such practice, or revoke the license granted for the exercise of the legal
membership fees due from him. profession.

On March 2, 1976, the Court required the IBP President and the IBP Board of Governors to reply to The matters here complained of are the very same issues raised in a previous case before the Court,
Edillon's comment: on March 24, 1976, they submitted a joint reply. entitled "Administrative Case No. 526, In the Matter of the Petition for the Integration of the Bar of the
Philippines, Roman Ozaeta, et al., Petitioners." The Court exhaustively considered all these matters in
that case in its Resolution ordaining the integration of the Bar of the Philippines, promulgated on
Thereafter, the case was set for hearing on June 3, 1976. After the hearing, the parties were required
January 9, 1973. The Court there made the unanimous pronouncement that it was
to submit memoranda in amplification of their oral arguments. The matter was thenceforth submitted
for resolution.
... fully convinced, after a thoroughgoing conscientious study of all the arguments
adduced in Adm. Case No. 526 and the authoritative materials and the mass of
At the threshold, a painstaking scrutiny of the respondent's pleadings would show that the propriety
factual data contained in the exhaustive Report of the Commission on Bar
and necessity of the integration of the Bar of the Philippines are in essence conceded. The respondent,
Integration, that the integration of the Philippine Bar is 'perfectly constitutional
however, objects to particular features of Rule of Court 139-A (hereinafter referred to as the Court
and legally unobjectionable'. ...
Rule) 1 — in accordance with which the Bar of the Philippines was integrated — and to the provisions
of par. 2, Section 24, Article III, of the IBP By-Laws (hereinabove cited).
Be that as it may, we now restate briefly the posture of the Court.
An "Integrated Bar" is a State-organized Bar, to which every lawyer must belong, as distinguished from (5) Promulgate rules concerning pleading, practice, and pro. procedure in all
bar associations organized by individual lawyers themselves, membership in which is voluntary. courts, and the admission to the practice of law and the integration of the Bar ...,
Integration of the Bar is essentially a process by which every member of the Bar is afforded an
opportunity to do his share in carrying out the objectives of the Bar as well as obliged to bear his
portion of its responsibilities. Organized by or under the direction of the State, an integrated Bar is an and Section 1 of Republic Act No. 6397, which reads:
official national body of which all lawyers are required to be members. They are, therefore, subject to
all the rules prescribed for the governance of the Bar, including the requirement of payment of a SECTION 1. Within two years from the approval of this Act, the Supreme Court
reasonable annual fee for the effective discharge of the purposes of the Bar, and adherence to a code may adopt rules of Court to effect the integration of the Philippine Bar under such
of professional ethics or professional responsibility breach of which constitutes sufficient reason for conditions as it shall see fit in order to raise the standards of the legal profession,
investigation by the Bar and, upon proper cause appearing, a recommendation for discipline or improve the administration of justice, and enable the Bar to discharge its public
disbarment of the offending member. 2 responsibility more effectively.

The integration of the Philippine Bar was obviously dictated by overriding considerations of public Quite apart from the above, let it be stated that even without the enabling Act (Republic Act No. 6397),
interest and public welfare to such an extent as more than constitutionally and legally justifies the and looking solely to the language of the provision of the Constitution granting the Supreme Court the
restrictions that integration imposes upon the personal interests and personal convenience of individual power "to promulgate rules concerning pleading, practice and procedure in all courts, and the
lawyers. 3 admission to the practice of law," it at once becomes indubitable that this constitutional declaration
vests the Supreme Court with plenary power in all cases regarding the admission to and supervision of
Apropos to the above, it must be stressed that all legislation directing the integration of the Bar have the practice of law.
been uniformly and universally sustained as a valid exercise of the police power over an important
profession. The practice of law is not a vested right but a privilege, a privilege moreover clothed with Thus, when the respondent Edillon entered upon the legal profession, his practice of law and his
public interest because a lawyer owes substantial duties not only to his client, but also to his brethren exercise of the said profession, which affect the society at large, were (and are) subject to the power of
in the profession, to the courts, and to the nation, and takes part in one of the most important functions the body politic to require him to conform to such regulations as might be established by the proper
of the State — the administration of justice — as an officer of the court. 4 The practice of law being authorities for the common good, even to the extent of interfering with some of his liberties. If he did
clothed with public interest, the holder of this privilege must submit to a degree of control for the not wish to submit himself to such reasonable interference and regulation, he should not have clothed
common good, to the extent of the interest he has created. As the U. S. Supreme Court through Mr. the public with an interest in his concerns.
Justice Roberts explained, the expression "affected with a public interest" is the equivalent of "subject
to the exercise of the police power" (Nebbia vs. New York, 291 U.S. 502).
On this score alone, the case for the respondent must already fall.
5
When, therefore, Congress enacted Republic Act No. 6397 authorizing the Supreme Court to "adopt
rules of court to effect the integration of the Philippine Bar under such conditions as it shall see fit," it The issues being of constitutional dimension, however, we now concisely deal with them seriatim.
did so in the exercise of the paramount police power of the State. The Act's avowal is to "raise the
standards of the legal profession, improve the administration of justice, and enable the Bar to
1. The first objection posed by the respondent is that the Court is without power to compel him to
discharge its public responsibility more effectively." Hence, the Congress in enacting such Act, the
become a member of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines, hence, Section 1 of the Court Rule is
Court in ordaining the integration of the Bar through its Resolution promulgated on January 9, 1973,
unconstitutional for it impinges on his constitutional right of freedom to associate (and not to associate).
and the President of the Philippines in decreeing the constitution of the IBP into a body corporate
Our answer is: To compel a lawyer to be a member of the Integrated Bar is not violative of his
through Presidential Decree No. 181 dated May 4, 1973, were prompted by fundamental
constitutional freedom to associate. 6
considerations of public welfare and motivated by a desire to meet the demands of pressing public
necessity.
Integration does not make a lawyer a member of any group of which he is not already a member. He
became a member of the Bar when he passed the Bar examinations. 7 All that integration actually does
The State, in order to promote the general welfare, may interfere with and regulate personal liberty,
is to provide an official national organization for the well-defined but unorganized and incohesive group
property and occupations. Persons and property may be subjected to restraints and burdens in order to
of which every lawyer is a ready a member. 8
secure the general prosperity and welfare of the State (U.S. vs. Gomez Jesus, 31 Phil 218), for, as the
Latin maxim goes, "Salus populi est supreme lex." The public welfare is the supreme law. To this
fundamental principle of government the rights of individuals are subordinated. Liberty is a blessing Bar integration does not compel the lawyer to associate with anyone. He is free to attend or not attend
without which life is a misery, but liberty should not be made to prevail over authority because then the meetings of his Integrated Bar Chapter or vote or refuse to vote in its elections as he chooses. The
society win fall into anarchy (Calalang vs. Williams, 70 Phil. 726). It is an undoubted power of the State only compulsion to which he is subjected is the payment of annual dues. The Supreme Court, in order
to restrain some individuals from all freedom, and all individuals from some freedom. to further the State's legitimate interest in elevating the quality of professional legal services, may
require that the cost of improving the profession in this fashion be shared by the subjects and
beneficiaries of the regulatory program — the lawyers.9
But the most compelling argument sustaining the constitutionality and validity of Bar integration in the
Philippines is the explicit unequivocal grant of precise power to the Supreme Court by Section 5 (5) of
Article X of the 1973 Constitution of the Philippines, which reads: Assuming that the questioned provision does in a sense compel a lawyer to be a member of the
Integrated Bar, such compulsion is justified as an exercise of the police power of the State. 10
Sec. 5. The Supreme Court shall have the following powers:
2. The second issue posed by the respondent is that the provision of the Court Rule requiring payment
of a membership fee is void. We see nothing in the Constitution that prohibits the Court, under its
xxx xxx xxx
constitutional power and duty to promulgate rules concerning the admission to the practice of law and
the integration of the Philippine Bar (Article X, Section 5 of the 1973 Constitution) — which power the
respondent acknowledges — from requiring members of a privileged class, such as lawyers are, to pay
a reasonable fee toward defraying the expenses of regulation of the profession to which they belong. It
is quite apparent that the fee is indeed imposed as a regulatory measure, designed to raise funds for
carrying out the objectives and purposes of integration. 11

3. The respondent further argues that the enforcement of the penalty provisions would amount to a
deprivation of property without due process and hence infringes on one of his constitutional rights.
Whether the practice of law is a property right, in the sense of its being one that entitles the holder of a
license to practice a profession, we do not here pause to consider at length, as it clear that under the
police power of the State, and under the necessary powers granted to the Court to perpetuate its
existence, the respondent's right to practise law before the courts of this country should be and is a
matter subject to regulation and inquiry. And, if the power to impose the fee as a regulatory measure is
recognize, then a penalty designed to enforce its payment, which penalty may be avoided altogether
by payment, is not void as unreasonable or arbitrary. 12

But we must here emphasize that the practice of law is not a property right but a mere privilege, 13 and
as such must bow to the inherent regulatory power of the Court to exact compliance with the lawyer's
public responsibilities.

4. Relative to the issue of the power and/or jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to strike the name of a
lawyer from its Roll of Attorneys, it is sufficient to state that the matters of admission, suspension,
disbarment and reinstatement of lawyers and their regulation and supervision have been and are
indisputably recognized as inherent judicial functions and responsibilities, and the authorities holding
such are legion. 14

In In Re Sparks (267 Ky. 93, 101 S.W. (2d) 194), in which the report of the Board of Bar
Commissioners in a disbarment proceeding was confirmed and disbarment ordered, the court,
sustaining the Bar Integration Act of Kentucky, said: "The power to regulate the conduct and
qualifications of its officers does not depend upon constitutional or statutory grounds. It is a power
which is inherent in this court as a court — appropriate, indeed necessary, to the proper administration
of justice ... the argument that this is an arbitrary power which the court is arrogating to itself or
accepting from the legislative likewise misconceives the nature of the duty. It has limitations no less
real because they are inherent. It is an unpleasant task to sit in judgment upon a brother member of
the Bar, particularly where, as here, the facts are disputed. It is a grave responsibility, to be assumed
only with a determination to uphold the Ideals and traditions of an honorable profession and to protect
the public from overreaching and fraud. The very burden of the duty is itself a guaranty that the power
will not be misused or prostituted. ..."

The Court's jurisdiction was greatly reinforced by our 1973 Constitution when it explicitly granted to the
Court the power to "Promulgate rules concerning pleading, practice ... and the admission to the
practice of law and the integration of the Bar ... (Article X, Sec. 5(5) the power to pass upon the fitness
of the respondent to remain a member of the legal profession is indeed undoubtedly vested in the
Court.

We thus reach the conclusion that the provisions of Rule of Court 139-A and of the By-Laws of the
Integrated Bar of the Philippines complained of are neither unconstitutional nor illegal.

WHEREFORE, premises considered, it is the unanimous sense of the Court that the respondent
Marcial A. Edillon should be as he is hereby disbarred, and his name is hereby ordered stricken from
the Roll of Attorneys of the Court.

Fernando, Teehankee, Barredo, Makasiar, Antonio, Muñoz Palma, Aquino, Concepcion, Jr., Santos,
Fernandez and Guerrero, JJ., concur.
EN BANC 11. The said lawyers were aware that the money in the bank which was the subject of Civil Case No.
4580-R was the consideration for a supposed sale between me and Eliza Fanged which did not
materialize because it could not be registered aside from the fact that it is void pursuant to the decision
in Civil Case No. 4528-R. They knew that the money is not owned by Eliza Fanged. Yet, despite this
knowledge, they misled the court by making it appear that all the parties agreed to the settlement by
[A.C. No. 5830. January 26, 2004] filing the manifestation of compromise settlement with motion (Annex G) knowing that I was abroad
and could not have given my consent thereto.

12. Worse, they made it appear that I was copy furnished of the pleading when in truth and in fact I
never received the same as I was in the United States of America. My investigation of the matter
MARY D. MALECDAN, complainant, vs. ATTY. PERCIVAL L. PEKAS and ATTY. MATTHEW P. reveals that the sister of Eliza Fanged, Veronica Buking, received the pleading for me.
KOLLIN, respondents.

13. When confronted, Eliza Fanged admitted to me that the money was actually entrusted to
DECISION respondent Atty. Matthew Kollin.[8]
CALLEJO, SR., J.:
The complainant also alleged that she filed the complaint against the respondents because of
the latters connivance in causing the withdrawal of the money in the bank. She pointed out that while
The instant case arose when Mary D. Malecdan filed a verified Letter-Complaint dated January the manifestation of compromise settlement does not bear the signature of Atty. Kollin, paragraph (b)
19, 2001 addressed to Atty. Ceasar G. Oracion, then President of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines of the prayer clearly shows that the amount of P30,000 was appropriated to a joint account belonging
(IBP), Baguio and Benguet Chapters, charging Atty. Percival L. Pekas and Atty. Matthew P. Kollin, with to the respondents by way of attorneys fees.
violation of the lawyers oath, as they committed acts not only prejudicial to [the IBP] but are in
themselves in violation of the oath that they have sworn to uphold as [a] condition for their admission to The complainant explained that respondent Atty. Kollin, as counsel for Eliza Fanged in Civil
the bar.[1] Case No. 4580-R, prayed that the sale of the property to her (the complainant) be declared null and
void. Proceeding from this premise, then, Eliza Fanged had no right to the money in the bank; the
The undisputed facts as culled from the records are as follows: respondents, likewise, had no right to withdraw the amount of P30,000 to answer for their attorneys
fees. She further averred that the respondents made it appear to the trial court that she (the
On November 25, 1999, the complainant entered into a deed of sale with the Spouses
complainant) was duly notified of the purported settlement, when she was, in fact, not a party thereto
Washington and Eliza Fanged over a parcel of land located in Baguio City, covered by Transfer
as evidenced by the records.Thus:
Certificate of Title No. T-71030.[2] The complainant paid P10,000 as earnest money, and P2,600,000
as the full and final payment of the consideration of the sale. The money was received by Eliza Fanged
and deposited in the account of Atty. Artemio Bustamante, then counsel for the latter. The complainant [T]he records reveal that the person who received the copy of the document purporting to cover the
later found out, however, that the said lot was the subject of a controversy[3] between the former settlement intended for me is the very sister of his client, Eliza Fanged, in the person of
owners and the Fanged Spouses. Veronica Buking. Veronica Buking is not and was never a resident of Dagsian, Baguio City, the
location of my permanent residence. Eliza Fanged could not have thought of this scheme.
When Atty. Bustamante refused to release the proceeds of the sale to Eliza Fanged, the latter,
through her new counsel respondent Atty. Kollin, filed a complaint for rescission of contract with prayer
for the issuance of a temporary restraining order with damages[4] against the complainant, 9. But lawyer as he is, Atty. Kollin must have anticipated possible legal repercussion[s] that would
Atty. Bustamante, Philippine Commercial and Industrial Bank (PCIB) and Washington Fanged ensue as a result of this scheme. In the Manifestation of Compromise Settlement with Motion, he
on December 2, 1999.[5] asked his co-respondent, Atty. Pekas, to sign as counsel for Eliza Fanged. Atty. Pekas seem[ed] to be
too willing to extend assistance to Eliza Fanged if only to get the money from the bank. However, in the
Eliza Fanged and the respondents thereafter caused the filing of a Manifestation of Compromise actual release, and the partition of the money, the respondents reportedly actively participated to
Settlement with Motion dated December 14, 1999.[6] It was prayed, among others, that an order be insure their share of P30,000.00 as attorneys fees. Atty. Pekas did not stop there. As counsel for Eliza
issued directing defendant PCIB to transfer the amount of P30,000 from the account of Fanged, he signed the Notice of Dismissal dated December 16, 1999 with a misleading statement that
Atty. Bustamante to a joint account in the name of respondents Atty. Kollin and Atty. Pekas by way of the parties have extrajudicially settled this case amicably among themselves, when in truth and in fact,
attorneys fees. The complainant was not a signatory to the compromise settlement, as she was in I was never consulted. [9]
the United States at the time. The money was then transferred to the respective accounts as prayed for
in the compromise settlement.

The Respondents Allegations

The Complainants Allegations


The respondents denied the foregoing allegations in their respective answers.

According to the complainant, respondent Atty. Kollin k