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Criminal Procedure: Reviewer (jurisprudence) Jurisdiction, in general

I. Introduction/Preliminary Considerations/ Jurisdiction (Antiporda JR v. Garchitorena)


Due Process in criminal cases Jurisdiction is the power with which courts are invested
Sec 14 (1 and 2) of Article III-1987 Constitution provides for administering justice, that is, for hearing and deciding
the fundamentals: cases.
1. No person shall be held to answer for criminal Requirements wherein a court acquires jurisdiction to try
offense without due process of law a criminal case:
2. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall be a. The offense is one which the court is by law
presumed innocent until contrary is proved, and shall authorized to take cognizance of,
enjoy the right to be heard by himself and counsel, b. The offense must have been committed within its
to be informed of the nature and cause of the territorial jurisdiction, and
accusation against him, to have a speedy, impartial, c. The person charged with the offense must have
and public trial, to meet the witnesses face to face, brought in to its forum for trial, forcibly by warrant
and to have a compulsory process to secure the of arrest or upon voluntary submission to the court
attendance of witnesses and the production of (Foronda-Crystal v Son)
evidence in his behalf. However, after arraignment, Jurisdiction, it is axiomatic that jurisdiction over the
trial may proceed notwithstanding the absence of subject matter is the power to hear and determine the
the accused provided that he has been duly notified general class to which the proceedings in question
and his failure to appear is unjustifiable. belong; it is conferred by law and not by the consent or
(Alonte v. Savellano) acquiescence of any or all the parties of by erroneous
Due process in criminal proceedings, require belief of the Supreme Court that it exists.
a. That the court or tribunal trying the case is properly Supreme Court should only look into the facts alleged in
clothed with judicial power to hear and determine the complaint to determine whether a suit is within its
the matter before it; jurisdiction
b. That jurisdiction is lawfully acquired by it over the Jurisdiction is conferred by law
person of the accused; (United States v. De la Santa)
c. That the accused is given an opportunity to be heard; -Seduction RPC Art. 448-
and The accused in a criminal case cannot, by express waiver
d. That the judgment is rendered only upon lawful or otherwise, confer jurisdiction on a court over an
hearing offense as to which jurisdiction has not been conferred
Rules on procedure are mandatory and indispensable upon such court by law
Procedural due process cannot possibly be met without (Alarilla v. Sandiganbayan)
a “law which hears before it condemns, which proceeds -Public Officers; an offense is deemed to be committed
upon inquiry and renders judgment only after trial in relation to the accused’s office when such office is an

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element of the crime charged or when the offense (Republic v. Sunga)
charged is intimately connected with the discharge of the How the court acquires jurisdiction over the case and
official functions of accused- over the person accused. The filing of a complaint of
Where retroactive effect is not provided for, statues information in Court initiates a criminal action. When
altering the jurisdiction of a court cannot be applied to after the filing of the complaint or information a warrant
cases already pending prior to their enactment. for the arrest of the accused is issued by the trial court
Jurisdiction of a court to try a criminal case is determined and the accused either voluntarily submitted himself to
by the law in force at the time of the institution of the Court or was duly arrested, the Court thereby
criminal action acquired jurisdiction over the person of the accused.
Once the court acquires jurisdiction over a controversy, (Miranda v. Tuliao)
it shall continue to exercise such jurisdiction until the Bail- Custody of the law is required before the court can
final determination of the case and it is not affected by act upon the application of bail, but is not required for
subsequent legislation vesting jurisdiction over such the adjudication of other reliefs sought by the defendant
proceedings in another tribunal. where the mere application thereof constitutes a waiver
(Garcia v. De Jesus) of the defense of lack of jurisdiction over the person of
-COMELEC jurisdiction; Authority to issue writs if the accused.
certiorari, prohibition and mandamus must be expressly Custody of law is accomplished either by arrest or
conferred by the Constitution or by law. Although the voluntary surrender; signifies restraint on the person
Constitution granted COMELEC was appellate thereby deprived of his own will and liberty; custody over
jurisdiction, makes no mention of any power given the the body of the accused; includes detention.
COMELEC to exercise original jurisdiction over Petitions Jurisdiction over the person of the accused is acquired
for Certiorari, Prohibition and Mandamus. upon his arrest or voluntary appearance.
Jurisdiction is conferred only by the Constitution or by (e.g. one can be under the custody of the law but not yet
law subject to the jurisdiction of the court over his person,
Jurisdiction is fixed by law, the power to issue such Writs such as when a person arrested through warrant files a
cannot be implied from the mere existence of appellate motion before arraignment to quash the warrant; one
jurisdiction. can be subject to the jurisdiction of the court over his
Jurisdiction over the person of the accused person and not be in the custody of the law, when
 Voluntary appearance; Participating in the accused escapes custody after his trial has commenced)
hearing or arraignment  In civil cases, motion to dismiss on the ground of
 Through warrant of arrest lack of jurisdiction over the person of the
 Warrantless arrests defendant WON other grounds of dismissal are
Infragmante Delicto included
Inquest

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 In criminal cases, motion to quash a complaint (Figueroa y Cervantes v. People of the Philippines)
on the ground of lack of jurisdiction over the Issue on jurisdiction may be raised at any stage of the
person of the accused proceedings, even on appeal, and is not lost by
 Motion to quash warrant of arrest. waiver or by estoppel.
Delay alone, though unreasonable, will not sustain
Jurisdiction over the territory the defense of “estoppel by laches” unless it further
(Macasaet v. People) appears that the party, knowing his rights, has not
-crime of libel; fundamental rule that venue is sought to enforce them until the condition of the
jurisdictional; party pleading laches has in good faith become so
Rules for possible venues for the institution of the changed that he cannot be restored to his former
criminal and the civil aspects of libel; state, if the rights be then enforced, due to loss of
a. Whether the offended party is a public evidence, change of title, intervention of equities,
official of a private person, criminal action and other causes.
may be filed in the CFI of the province or city Applied only from necessity, and only in
where the libelous article is printed and first extraordinary circumstances.
published Adherence of Jurisdiction or Continuing Jurisdiction,
b. Offended party is a private individual, the Exception
criminal action may also be filed in the CFI of (Cruz v. CA)
the province where he actually resided at the If the trial court has jurisdiction over the subject
time of the commission of the offense matter and over the accused, and the crime was
c. Offended party is a public officer whose committed within its territorial jurisdiction, it
office is in Manila at the time of the necessarily exercises jurisdiction over all matters
commission of the offense, the action may that the law requires the court to resolve
be filed in the CFI of Manila (Al Awadhi v. Astih)
d. Offended party is a public officer holding -Sharia Court Jurisdiction-
office outside manila, action may be filed in Once a court has assumed jurisdiction of a case, its
the CFI of the province or city where he held jurisdiction shall continue until the case is finished, it
office at the time of the commission of the may not be ousted by a co-equal court
offense (People v. Cawaling)
Estoppel The jurisdiction of a court is determined by the law
(Binay v. Sandiganbayan) in force at the time of the institution of the action;
The doctrine of estoppel does not apply as against Once the court acquires jurisdiction, it may not be
the people (people of the Philippines as party in a ousted from the case by any subsequent events, such
criminal action) in criminal prosecutions

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as a new legislation placing such proceedings under Court’s initial assumption of jurisdiction over the
the jurisdiction of another tribunal offense charged in this case did not, therefor,
Exception: prevent it from subsequently declaring itself to be
1. There is an express provision of the statute without jurisdiction.
2. The statute is clearly intended to apply to General Rule: Lack of jurisdiction, court must dismiss
actions pending before its enactment the case, unless the Supreme Court orders based on
(Lacson v. Executive Secretary) law.
-Exclusive original jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan: Jurisdiction over the subject matter, applicable law
1. The offense committed is a violation of (People v. Lagon)
a) RA 3019, the Anti-Graft and Subject matter jurisdiction of a court in criminal law
Corrupt Practices Act matters is properly measured by the law in effect at
b) RA 1379, the law on ill-gotten the time of the commencement of a criminal action
wealth rather than by the law in effect at the time of the
c) Chapter II, Section 2, Title VII, commission of the offense charged.
Book II of the RPC, the law on Subject-matter jurisdiction in criminal case
bribery determined by the authority of the court to impose
d) EO 1, 2, 14, and 14-A, 1986, the penalty imposable under the applicable statute
Sequestration cases given the allegations of a criminal information.
e) Other offenses or felonies (Asistio v. People)
whether simple or complexed Jurisdiction of the court is determined by the
with other crimes averments of the complaint or information, in
2. The offender committing the same offenses relation to the law prevailing at the time of the filing
in items a, b, c, and e is a public official or of the complaint or information, and the penalty
employee holding any of the positions provided by law for the crime charged at the time of
enumerated in paragraph a of Section 4; its commission.
3. The offense committed is in relation to the Jurisdiction of Courts/Tribunals in Criminal Cases
office Municipal/Metropolitan Trial Courts
Lack of Jurisdiction Regional Trial Courts
(RCBC v. Isnami) Sandiganbayan
Instead of ordering the transfer of the complaint to Court of Tax Appeals
the MTC, respondent RTC judge should have Court of Appeals
dismissed the case prayed for by petitioner for lack Supreme Court
of jurisdiction. Jurisdiction over Indigenous Peoples
(Cunanan v. Arceo)

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Ha Datu Tawahig v. The Honorable Cebu City (People v. Bautista)
Prosecutor I Lineth Lapinid Prescription; it is a well settled rule that the filing of the
Injunction of Criminal Cases complaint with the fiscal’s office suspends the running of
(Brocka v. Enrile) the prescriptive period; the prescriptive period remains
Instances when criminal prosecution may be stopped tolled from the time the complaint was filled with the
by courts. The general rule is that criminal office of the Prosecutor until such time that the
prosecution may not be restrained or stayed by respondent is either convicted or acquitted by the proper
injunction, preliminary or final. There are however court
exceptions, among which are: (Panaguiton Jr. v. DOJ)
a. To afford adequate protection to the -Act No. 3326, An Act to Establish Prescription for the
constitutional rights of the accused Violations of Special Acts and Municipal Ordinances and
b. When necessary for the orderly administration to Provide When Prescription Shall Begin, is the law
of justice or to avoid oppression or multiplicity of applicable to offenses under special laws which do not
actions provide their own prescriptive periods.
c. When there is a pre-judicial question which is The prescriptive period is interrupted by the institution
sub judice of proceedings for the preliminary investigation against
d. When the acts of the officer are without or in the accused.
excess of authority Petitioners filing of his complaint-affidavit before the
e. Where the prosecution is under an invalid law, Office of the City Prosecutor signified the
ordinance or regulation commencement of the proceedings for the prosecution
f. When double jeopardy is clearly apparent of the accused and thus effectively interrupted the
g. Where the court has no jurisdiction over offense prescriptive period for the offenses they had been
h. Where it is a case of persecution rather than charged
prosecution (Jadewell Parking Systems v. Lidua)
i. Where the charges are manifestly false and In resolving the issue of prescription of the offense
motivated by the lust for vengeance charged, the following should be considered;
j. When there is clearly no prima facie case against a) The period of prescription of the offense
the accused and a motion to quash on that charged;
ground has been denied b) The time the period of prescription starts to run;
k. Preliminary injunction has been issued by the c) The time the prescriptive period was interrupted
Supreme Court to prevent the threatened Article 91 of the Revised Penal Code governs the
unlawful arrest of petitioners commencement of prescription period of offenses- the
II. Rule 110- Prosecution of Offenses period of prescription shall commence to run from the
Institution of Criminal Actions (Section 1) day on which the crime is discovered by the offended

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party, the authorities or their agents, and shall be At any time before entering a plea, an accused may assail
interrupted by the filing of the complaint or information, the information filed with the court based on the
and shall commence to run again when such proceedings grounds enumerated in Section 3, Rule 117 of the Rules
terminate without the accused being convicted or of Court, one which is the claim that the facts charged do
acquitted, or are unjustifiably stopped for any reason not not constitute an offense
imputable to him. (Lasoy n Zeñarosa)
Who must prosecute (Section 5, 16) An information is valid as long as it distinctly states the
(Pinote v. Ayco) statutory designation of the offense and the acts or
It is on the account that violations of criminal laws are an omissions constitute thereof, if the offense is stated in
affront to the People of the Philippines as a whole and such way that a person of ordinary intelligence may
not merely to the person directly prejudiced that the immediately know what is meant and the court can
presence of a public prosecutor in the trial of criminal decide the matter according to laws, the inevitable
cases is necessary to protect vital state interests, conclusion is that the information is valid. It is not
foremost of which is its interest to vindicate the rule of necessary to follow language of the statute in the
law, the bedrock of peace of the people. information.
The act of the judge in allowing the presentation of the (People v. Puig)
defense witness in the absence of the complaint public Theft-owner
prosecutor or a private prosecutor designated for the The Court consistently considered the allegations in the
purpose is a clear transgression of the Rules which could information that such employees acted with grave abuse
not be rectified by subsequently giving the prosecution a of confidence, to the damage and prejudice of the bank,
chance to cross-examine the witness. WITHOUT PARTICULARLY REFERRING TO IT AS OWNER
(People v. Piccio) OF THE MONEY DEPOSITS, AS SUFFICIENT TO MAKE OUT
If there is dismissal of a criminal case by the trial court or A CAS OF QUALIFIED THEFT.
if there is an acquittal of a criminal case by the trial court (People v. Ceredon)
or if there is an acquittal of the accused, it is only the OSG -Rape-
that may bring an appeal on the criminal aspect The date or time of the commission of the rape need not
representing the people be alleged with precision; it is sufficient that the
(People v. Go) complaint or information states that the crime has been
Indispensable Parties; the absence of such indispensable committed at any time as near as possible to the date of
party renders all subsequent actions of the court null and its actual commission.
void for want of authority to act, not only as to the absent (People v. Soriano)
parties but even as to those present. Where the accused did not seasonably object to the
Complaint and Information (Section 2-4; 6-13) multiple offenses in the information, the court may
(People v. Bayabos) convict him of as many as are charged and proved

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However, both trial court and appellate court merely 1. New allegations which relate only to the range of
found the appellate guilty of “multiple rape” the penalty that the court might impose in the
Without specifying the number of rapes that appellant id event of conviction;
guilty of. While this may have been irrelevant considering 2. An amendment which does not charge another
that the appellant would have been sentenced to suffer offense different and distinct from that charged
the extreme penalty of death, even if only one count of in the original one;
rape was proven, the same is still important since this 3. Additional allegations which do not alter the
would have bearing on appellant’s civil liability. prosecution’s theory of the case so as to cause
(Ricarze v. CA) surprise to the accused and affect the form of
All criminal actions covered by a complaint or defense he has or will assume;
information shall be prosecuted under the direct 4. An amendment which does not adversely affect
supervision and control of the public prosecutor any substantial right of the accused;
5. An amendment that merely adds specifications
Before the accused enters his plea, a formal or to eliminate the vagueness in the information
substantial amendment of the complaint or information and not to introduce new and material facts, and
may be made without leave of court—after the entry of merely states with additional precision
plea, only a formal amendment may be made but with something which is already contained in the
leave of court and if it does not prejudice the rights of the original information and which adds nothing
accused. After arraignment, a substantial amendment is essential for conviction for the crime charged.
proscribed except if the same is beneficial to the accused the test as to whether the defendant is prejudiced by the
amendment is whether a defense under the information
A substantial amendment consists of the recital of facts as it originally stood would be available after the
constituting the offense charged and determinative of amendment is made, and whether any evidence
the jurisdiction of the court- all other matters are merely defendant might have would be equally applicable to the
of form information in one form as in the other

the court held that in case of offenses against property, Subrogation- it is the transfer of all rights of the creditor
the designation of the name of the offended party is not to a third person, who substitutes him in all his rights.
absolutely indispensable for as long as the criminal act (Senador v. People)
charged in the complaint or information can be properly In offenses against property, the materiality of the
identified. erroneous designation of the offended party would
Following are formal amendments; depend on whether or not the subject matter of the
offense was sufficiently described and identified

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Rule 110, Sec. 12 The purpose of this rule;
Name of the offended party- (a) in offense against 1. It enables the accused to suitably prepare his
property, if the name of the offended party is unknown, defense
the property must be described with such particularity as 2. It allows the accused, if found guilty, to plead his
to properly identify the offense charged. conviction in a subsequent prosecution for the
In offenses against property, if the subject matter of the same offense.
offense is generic and not identifiable, such as the money an information need only state the ultimate facts
unlawfully taken, an error in the designation of the constituting the offense and not the finds details of why
offended party is fatal and would result in the acquittal and how the crime was committed
of the accused. However, if the subject matter of the Amendment and Substitution (Section 14)
offense is specific and identifiable, such as a warrant or a (Buhat v. CA)
check an error in the designation of the offended party is All the allegation of conspiracy among all the private
immaterial. respondents-accused which was not previously included
(People v. Sandiganbayan) in the original information is a substantial amendment.
The main purpose of an information is to ensure that an “conspiring, confederating and helping one another”
accused is formally informed of the facts and the acts does not change the nature of petitioner’s participation
constituting the offense charged. as principal in killing.
Motion to quash information on the ground that the Amendment to insert in the information the real name of
facts charged do not constitute an offense should be the accused involves merely a matter of form.
resolved on the basis of the allegations in the Amendment of the information so as to change charge
information whose truth and veracity are hypothetically from homicide to murder may be made even if it may
admitted. The question that must be answered is result in altering the nature of the charge so long as it can
whether such allegations are sufficient to establish the be done without prejudice to the rights of the accused.
elements of the crime charged without considering Amendment was made before arraignment
matters aliunde. Courts must look into three matters: In amending a criminal information, what is primarily
1. What must be alleged in a valid information; guarded against is the impairment of the accused’s right
2. What the elements of the crime charged are; to intelligently know the nature of the charge against
3. Whether these elements are sufficiently stated him.
in the information. (Fronda-Baggao v. People)
The true test in ascertaining the validity and sufficiency Before the accused enters his plea, a formal or
of the information is WHETHER THE CRIME IS DESCRIBED substantial amendment of the complaint or information
IN INTELLIGIBLE TERMS WITH SUCH PARTICULARITY AS may be made without leave of the court. After the entry
TO APPRISE THE ACCUSED, WITH REASONABLE of a plea, only a formal amendment may be made but
CERTAINTY, OF THE OFFENSE CHARGED. with leave of court and only if it does not prejudice the

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rights of the accused. After arraignment, a substantial substantial amendments to the information
amendment is proscribed except if the same is beneficial after the plea has been taken cannot made over
to the accused. the objection of the accused could invoke double
(Pacoy v. Hon. Cajigal) jeopardy. Substitution requires or presupposes
Test of whether the rights of an accused are prejudiced that the new information involves a different
by the amendment of a complaint or information is offense which does not include or is not
 Whether a defense under the complaint or necessarily included in the original charge hence
information, as it originally stood, would no the accused cannot claim double jeopardy.
longer be available after the amendment is The rule is that where the second information involves
made; the same offense, or an offense which is necessarily
 When any evidence the accused might have includes or is necessarily included in the first
would be inapplicable to the complaint or information, an amendment of the information is
information. sufficient; otherwise, where the new information
Distinction between amendment and substitution: charges an offense which is distinct and different from
1. Amendment may involve either formal or the initially charged, a substitution is in order.
substantial changes, while substitution Venue (Section 5)
necessarily involves a substantial change from (Bonifacio v. RTC)
the original charge; Venue is jurisdictional in criminal actions such that the
2. Amendment before plea has been entered can place where the crime was committed determines not
be affected without leave of court, but only the venue of the action but constitutes an essential
substitution of information must be with leave of element of jurisdiction.
court as the original information has to be Venue of libel cases where the complaint is a private
dismissed; individual is limited to only either of two places, namely;
3. Where the amendment is only as to form, there 1. Where the complainant actually resides at the
is no need for another preliminary investigation time of the commission of the offense;
and the retaking of the plea of the accused; in 2. Where the alleged defamatory article was
substitution of the information, another printed and first published
preliminary investigation is entailed and the (Rigor v. People)
accused has to plead anew to the new Violation of BP 22 are categorized as transitory or
information; continuing crimes; in such crimes, some acts material
4. An amended information refers to the same and essential to the crimes and requisites to their
offense charged in the original information or to consummation occur in one municipality or territory and
an offense which necessarily includes or is some in another. In which event, the court of either has
necessarily included in the original charge, hence

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jurisdiction to try the cases, it being understood that the presence of the public prosecutor may be dispensed
first court taking cognizance of the case excludes others. with.
Where made; drawn; issue; and dishonored. (Lee Pue Liong v. Chua Pue Chin Lee)
(Unionbank v. People) The basis of civil liability arising from the crime is the
The jurisdiction of trial courts is limited to well-defined fundamental postulate of our law that every person
territories such that a trial court can only hear and try criminally liable is also civilly liable
cases involving crimes committed within its territorial When a person commits a crime, he offends two entities;
jurisdiction and laying the venue in the locus criminis is 1. The society in which he lives in or the political
grounded on the necessity and justice of having an entity, called the State, whose laws are violated
accused on trial in the municipality of province where 2. The individual member of that society whose
witnesses and other facilities for his defense are person, right, honor, chastity or property was
available. actually or directly injured or damaged by the
Jurisdiction is acquired by court- where the offense was same punishable act or omission.
committed or where any of its essential ingredients Section 12, Rule 110 defines an offended party as ,
occurred. the person against whom or against whose property
(Treñas v. People) the offense was committed; it is reasonable to
In the evidence adduced during trial shows that the assume that the offended party in the commission of
offense was committed somewhere else, the court a crime, public or private, is the party to whom the
should dismiss the action for want of jurisdiction. offender is civilly liable, and therefore the private
III. Rule 111- Prosecution of civil action individual to whom the offender is civilly liable is the
B. Section 4, AM No. 15-06-10-SC offended party.
Private Prosecutor (Cancio v Isip)
In cases where only the civil liability is being prosecuted An act or omission causing damage to another may
by a private prosecutor, the head of the prosecution give rise to two separate civil liabilities
office must issue in favor of the private prosecutor a 1. Civil liability ex delicto
written authority to try the case even in the absence of 2. Independent civil liabilities
the public prosecutor. The written authority must be a. arising not from the crime but culpa
submitted to the court prior to the presentation of contractual or aquiliana
evidence by the private prosecutor in accordance with b. where the injured party is granted the
Sec. 5, Rule 110. right to file an independent action and
With this authority on record, the court may set the trial distinct from the criminal action.
in the case and in other cases tried by private prosecutors However offended party cannot recover damages
with delegated authority on separate days when the twice for the same act or omission

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separate civil action arising not from the act or meanwhile, of the civil action is for the restitution,
omission – no reservation needed reparation or indemnification of the private
(Ferrer v. Sandiganbayan) offended party for the damage and injury he
Administrative liability is separate and distinct from sustained by reason of the delictual or felonious act
penal and civil liabilities. of the accused.
When a court obtains jurisdiction over a case, it Under Sec. 1 of Rule 111, an action for the recovery
continues to retain it until the case is terminated. of civil liability arising from the offense charged is
(Corpuz v. Siapno) necessarily included in the criminal proceedings,
Concomitant with his rendition of a guilty verdict, except
respondent should likewise make a finding on the 1. there is an express waiver of the civil action
accused’s civil liability because it is basic that every 2. there is a reservation to institute a separate
person criminally liable is also civilly liable. one
The civil liability arising from crime may be 3. the civil action was filed prior to the criminal
determined in the criminal proceedings if the action
offended party does not waive to have it adjudged or (Co v. Muñoz)
does not reserve the right to institute a separate civil Independent civil action, the last paragraph of Sec. 2
action against defendant. If there is no waiver or of Rule 111 applies to the civil actions to claim civil
reservation of civil liability, evidence should be liability arising from the offense charged, regardless
allowed to establish the extent of injuries suffered. if the action is instituted with or filed separately from
In case of acquittal , unless there is a clear showing the criminal action.
that the act from which the civil liability might rise Modes by which civil liability Ex Delicto may be
did not exist, the judgment shall make a finding on enforced;
the civil liability of the accused in favor of the 1. through civil action that is deemed impliedly
offended party. instituted in the criminal action;
The imposition of fine imposed in the criminal case is 2. through a civil action that is filed separately,
not for the purpose of indemnifying the aggrieved either before the criminal action or after,
party but for vindicating the State for the offense upon reservation of the right to separately in
committed by the wrongdoer. the criminal action.
(Lo Bun Tiong v. Balboa) Notwithstanding the acquittal of the accused, the
The prime purpose of the criminal action is to punish offended party may still claim civil liability ex delicto:
the offender to deter him and others from 1. if the acquittal is based on reasonable doubt
committing the same or similar offense, to isolate as only preponderance of evidence is
him from society, reform, or rehabilitate him or, in required;
general, to maintain social order. The purpose

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2. if the court declared that the liability of the the prejudicial question to simply test the sufficiency
accused is only civil; of the allegations in the information in order to
3. if the civil liability of the accused does not sustain the further prosecution of the criminal case.
arise from or is not based upon the crime of (Pimentel v. Pimentel)
which the accused is acquitted. Annulment of marriage- not similar or intimately
(Casupanan v. Laroya) related to the issue in the criminal case for parricide.
Offended party is allowed to bring an independent (Gaditano v. Miguel Corporation)
civil action under Articles 32, 33, 34, and 2176 of the The rationale behind the principle of prejudicial
Civil Code. question is to avoid two conflicting decisions.
Prejudicial Question (Section 6-7) (Reyes v. Rossi)
(Dreamwork v. Janiola) BP 22 and Rescission
Elements of prejudicial question: IV. Rule 112- Preliminary Investigation
1. the previously instituted civil action involves (Santos-Concio v. DOJ)
an issue similar or intimately related to the Being generally inquisitorial, the preliminary
issue raised in the subsequent criminal investigation stage is often the only means of
action discovering the persons who may be reasonably
2. the resolution of such issue determines charged with a crime, to enable the preparation of a
whether or not the criminal action may complaint or information.
proceed. A preliminary investigation can thus validly proceed
Civil action must be instituted prior to the institution on the basis of an affidavit of any competent person,
of the criminal action. without the referral document
(First Producers Holdings Corp c. Co) (Borlongan v Peña)
Even if a motion to suspend the criminal case on the Probable cause, what the constitution underscores is
ground that a prejudicial question existed was raised the exclusive and personal responsibility of the
before the prosecution rested, suspension may not issuing judge to satisfy himself of the existence of
be had where the peculiar circumstances of the case probable cause.
clearly how that it was merely to ploy to delay the Judge is not required to personally examine the
resolution of the criminal case and vex the already complainant and his witnesses:
overloaded court system with an unnecessary case. 1. Personally evaluate the report and the
Ownership is not a necessary element of the crime of supporting documents submitted by the
estafa. prosecutor regarding the existence of probable
(San Miguel Properties, Inc. v. Perez) cause, and on the basis thereof, he may already
Prejudicial question need not conclusively resolve make a personal determination of the existence
the guilt or innocence of the accused. It is enough for of probable cause;

MTDQUEMERISTA 12
2. If he is not satisfied that the probable cause and city prosecutor or chief state prosecutor or the
exists, he may disregard the prosecutor’s report Ombudsman or his deputy.
and require the submission of supporting (Crespo v. Mogul)
affidavits of witnesses to aid him in arriving at Once an information is filed in court, the court’s prior
the conclusion as to the existence of probable permission must be secured if fiscal wants to
cause. reinvestigate the case.
(Estrada v. Ombudsman) Role of the fiscal or prosecutor as we all know is to
A preliminary investigation is not part of the trial and see that justice is done and not necessarily to secure
it is only in a trial where an accused can demand the the conviction of the person accused before the
full exercise of his rights, such as the right to confront Courts.
and cross-examine his accusers to establish his The least that the fiscal should do is to continue to
innocence. appear for the prosecution although he may turn
A preliminary investigation is not the occasion for the over the presentation of the evidence to the private
full and exhaustive display of the parties’ evidence; it prosecutor but still under his direction and control.
is for the presentation of such evidence only as may
engender a well-grounded belief that an offense has
been committed and that the accused is probably
guilty thereof.
The right for preliminary investigation is merely a
statutory right.
Hearsay evidence is admissible in determining
probable cause in a preliminary investigation
because such investigation is merely preliminary,
and does not finally adjudicate rights and obligations
of the parties.
(Racho v. Miro)
The determination of probable cause need not be
based on clear and convincing evidence of guilt,
neither on evidence establishing absolute certainty
of guilt
(Tolentino v. Paqueo)
No complain or information may be filed or
dismissed by an investigating prosecutor without the
prior written authority or approval of the provincial

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