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Administration of Justice
Friday, 26 January 2018 10:36 PM

• “For change to happen, there has to be continuous, constructive dialogue. [Needless to say, that
dialogue hasn’t been happening under this administration.]”
• The first point contact of administration of justice is the arrest.*
○ Arrest, as defined by the law, is defined taking into custody of a person for committing of
an offense.
○ The agents of the state primarily involved in the arrest is the police.
§ How is the military different from the police? Military has a specific
mandate/specific role: to protect the country from internal and external threats or
armed conflicts, i.e., war, rebellion.
§ Examples of rebel groups: Maute (Marawi siege), MILF/MNLF (Zamboanga siege),
and NPA
§ The police take cares of crimes (There is such a thing as external crimes, i.e.
extraterritoriality).
○ Orders to arrest—or, warrants—are supposed to be issued by the courts. (During the
Marcos era, there was such thing was orders of arrest from the president. This was
changed by 1987 Constitution.)

On warrantless arrests (*The arresting officer is not necessarily a police office. There can be a civilian
arrest.)
• The instances of warrantless arrests are:
a. In flagrante: The person is caught in the act of committing a crime. (There is allowed
because it takes too much time to get a warrant.)
b. Arresting person has probable cause: The arresting officer has personal knowledge.
c. Escaped prisoner
• “If a warrantless arrest happens, the best way is to go the other way and cooperate [unless you
have something illegal with you, in which case, you invoke your right to privacy, guaranteed
under the Constitution.].”
• The second point of contact in the administration of justice is the inquest.*
○ Inquest refers to the police bringing the person to the prosecutor.
○ If the police does not bring the person arrested immediately to a prosecutor (within 12,
24, and 36 hours), then it is considered a crime (Revised Penal Code).
○ The role of prosecutor determines if the warrant of arrest is lawful (by looking at the
affidavit of arrest—or, sworn statement. (If the prosecutor finds out that the arrest is
unlawful, s/he can order the release of the prisoner.)
○ A release of a person, detained in the police station, before the inquest can be negotiated
(usually, by visiting officers of the Commission on Human Rights or first responders such
as lawyers).
§ Females are segregated in separate lots (In Quezon City, the QC Jail holds male
prisoners, and Camp Karingal holds the female prisoners.). They are separated
because of the possibility of the greater danger of abuse between inmates.
• If the prosecutors decides to file a case, it goes to the courts, where the detention goes to the
city or provincial jail (i.e., arraignment (discuss whether s/he is guilty or not guilty), pre-trial
(discussion of matters related to the trial), and trial).
○ If the person is convicted, the detention is in the New Bilibid Prison or the Women’s
Correctional (or, other natural penitentiary) during appeal, where the case goes to the
higher courts.
§ “With the War on Drugs, the conditions in the jails are even worse because of the
leap in the population of prisoners.”
§ “The sad reality is that police stations have small facilities so male and female
prisoners are often mixed. The danger is not just between inmates, but more so,
with police officers.”
§ “Despite all documents (i.e., International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and
UN Women resolutions stating the standard of treatment of prisoners), there is
something wrong, especially with the police officers assigned to women prisoners
are male and thus, the chances for sexual abuse are higher.”
§ There is a policy against the detention of prisoners of children who are 15 and
below (i.e., Juvenile Justice and Welfare of Act), which focuses on diversion rather
than detention. Even if they are not liable, they are forcibly put in institutions,
especially if they have committed heinous crimes—i.e., Bahay Pag-asa.
§ “The sad reality is that despite the Juvenile Justice Law, you can encounter children
mixed with adult prisoners in city or provincial jails. Being in such a close proximity
with these adult prisoners has a detrimental effect on the children, particularly in
that connections will be made and the value system and lifestyles will be shared,
which isn’t necessarily a morally upright example and moreover, the children may
be physically and sexually abused.”

On arrested with a warrant


• When a person is arrested with a warrant, there is first, a preliminary investigation and it is done
by the prosecutor. (You file a complaint affidavit with the prosecutor’s office, i.e. dishonoring of
cheques. The prosecutor then holds hearings. The person will get a chance to file a
counteraffidavit.)
• After which, there will a recommendation and it goes straight to the court. This happens if the
prosecutor finds that there is sufficient evidence for a case.
• Somewhere in between the preliminary investigation and courts, there will be a warrant of arrest
issued.
• Once the person is arrested, the person will undergo arraignment, pre-trial, and trial. (If the
police is the arresting officer, the detention is in the police station. If the NBI is the arresting
officer, s/he will be detained in the NBI office. The judge will then issue a commitment order to
transfer the person to the city or provincial jail.)
○ At the stage when the case is at the courts, there is a possibility of bail. (Bail is actually a
security put up for the personal security of the person.)
○ If the person is convicted, there is a possibility of appeal, which will bring the case to the
higher courts.
○ Not all crimes are bailable offenses—i.e., murder, robbery, homicide, and rape. Bail is not
available as a matter of right, but a matter of discretion. You can file a petition of bail, but
there will be a trial to figure out if there is a strong evidence.
• If you are an accused person, remedies are: (1) in cases of warrantless arrests, you can negotiate
with the police, (2) if it moves to the prosecutors, it is ex parte (only for one side), so only the
police will be considered, and (3) if it reaches the courts, it becomes even longer, you can pose
bail, you can also file a motion for dismissal (i.e., unlawful arrest).
○ It is important, if it reaches the arrangement, to be informed of the nature of the charge.
○ In pre-trial, it is for the identification of witness.
○ You can also file a motion to dismiss—de mar, there is no sufficient evidence that says the
accused is guilty. You present defense evidence through counsel.
• Double jeopardy (There must be an end to the suffering of the accused.) can only be invoked
when there has to be a complete trial.
○ If you are acquitted, double jeopardy will apply.
• If you are convicted, your remedy is appeals. (First at the court of appeals, and if you lose there,
you can appeal to the Supreme Court.)

• The administration of justice concerns the way by which we deal with those in prison.
○ “If you want to know what society is like, consider how it treats its prisoners.”
○ The course is designed to examine critically the system of the administration of justice and
how it treats male, female, and children.
○ On justices testifying versus Sereno: “To allow them to appear before the Committee of
Justice is to diminish the integrity of the Supreme Court.”
○ There are International covenants and treaties set the international standards (Who
makes these treaties? States.)
○ “The main purpose is penitentiaries is for reformation and rehabilitation and not
revenge.”
○ “What if there is a person in custody claims that there is a bomb? If this happens in the
PH, the police will most likely torture the person—which is absolutely wrong.”

Three pillars of the administration of justice:


1. Police
○ The police are part of the executive of the branch and thus, they have a responsibility to
enforce the law.
○ If there is a warrant, they are duty bound to carry it out.
2. Prosecutor
○ The prosecution screens the cases that are brought to them, specifically if there are
evidences of a crime and if such case should be brought to the court.
3. Judge
○ Only the judge can issue a warrant of arrest (During the Marcos regime, the President had
the power to issue an arrest, search, and seizure order.).
§ Why? The judiciary is specifically the branch that is intended to be independent,
intended to be free from all the encroachment from the other branches of the
government. As a safeguard to secure the peoples’ rights from arbitrary arrest, it is
important that the decision of issuing warrant of arrests cannot be left on the
hands of someone that is eager to solve crimes (i.e., police), but instead to
someone much more collected and resolute (i.e., judge).
§ The exception to this in aliens (people who are not Filipino citizens), wherein the
immigration can issue a warrant of arrest (to those violating immigration laws, e.g.,
overstaying).

Three kinds of cases


1. Civil case: There is a possibility for damages (The court can make a binding contract to compel
the accused to pay the damages—or, to do an act or not do an act.)
2. Administrative case: The sanction is usually the dismissal from service, suspension, or in some
cases, reprimand. (In the PH, the head of the unit is in the authority to punish the official
administratively.)
○ An example of an administrative case is an impeachment case, but it can be said that it is
also a criminal case, only because it is removing from office the highest person from the
land.
3. Criminal case: The punishment is the most serious of all, because it can mean the loss of liberty,
i.e., reclusion perpetua (20 to 40 years).
○ Before the 1987 Constitution, the highest punishment was the death penalty. In 1993, the
Congress reimposed the death penalty for the most heinous crimes. GMA passed a order
that repealed the law. In 2016, discussions on the reimposition of the death penalty
resurfaced with President Rodrigo Duterte, including it among its priority bills.