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People of the Philippines v Cezar Cortez

G. R. No. 239137
December 5, 2018

Facts: Cezar and Froilan were charged with the crime of robbery with multiple homicide.
Allegedly, Cezar hit Mario on the head with an object similar to a rolling pin while the
latter was asleep. Subsequently, Cezar stabbed Minda with a knife and Froilan stabbed
Efren. Thereafter, Cezar and Froilan forcibly entered Janet’s room and proceeded to stab
and kill Baby and Jocelyn. Fortunately for Jocelyn, she was able to hide.

Issue: Whether or not Cezar is guilty beyond reasonable doubt of 2 counts of homicide
and 3 counts of murder.

Held: No. The Court deemed it proper to modify Cezar’s conviction to 1 count of
homicide for the killing of Efren and 4 counts of murder for the killings of Mario, Minda,
Baby, and Jocelyn. The elements of murder are as follows: a. a person is killed; b. the
accused killed him or her; 3. the killing is not parricide or infanticide; and d. the killing is
not accompanied with any qualifying circumstances. Anent Mario’s killing, records show
that Cezar killed Mario while hitting him with an object similar to a rolling pin while he
was sleeping, thereby indicating Cezar purposedly sought such means of attack against
Mario so the latter would have no opportunity to defend himself and retaliate, thus
ensuring the execution of the criminal act.

Reynaldo Recto v The People of the Philippines

G.R. No. 236461
December 5, 2018

Facts: Reynaldo was charged with murder for the death of Carlostita. Allegedly, he hit
her on the head and parts of body with a hard object, thereby inflicting upon the latter
traumatic injuries which caused her death.

Issue: Did Reynaldo commit murder?

Held: No. Reynaldo was only guilty of homicide and not murder. Jurisprudence provides
that treachery cannot be appreciated if the accused did not make any preparation to kill
the deceased in such manner as to insure the commission of the killing or to make it
impossible or difficult for the person attached to retaliate or defend himself. Mere
suddenness of the attack is not sufficient to hold that treachery is present, where the
mode adopted by the aggressor does not positively tend to prove that they thereby
knowingly intended to insure the accomplishment of their criminal purpose without risk
to themselves arising from the defense that the victim might offer.

Saldua v People
GR. No. 210920
December 10, 2018

Facts: Martin was found guilty as an accomplice for the crime of murder by the RTC of
Dumaguete. According to the prosecution, Lalamunan walked ahead to where the
motorcyle was parked while Martin and Vertudez went to the house of the victim.
Vertudez was next seen to be firing at the garage of the victim, with an armed Martin
behind him. Meanwhile, Martin and Lalamunan left the area on board the motorcyle.

Issue: Whether or not the CA is correct in convicting Martin as an accomplice to the

crime of murder.

Held: No. Evident premeditation was not proven;; hence, the crime committed is only
homicide. It bears reiterating that a qualifying circumstance such as evident
premeditation must be proven as clearly as the crime itself. Martin was guilty was an
accomplice to homicide. His mere presence during the commission of the crime does not
automatically make him a co-conspirator as the existence of conspiracy cannot be
presumed. Lacking sufficient evidence of conspiracy, he should be made liable only as an

Jonny Yap v People

G.R. No. 234217
November 14, 2018

Facts: Accused was found guilty of attempted murder in the RTC of Manila. Allegedly,
the accused forced George to drink coffee which was laced with benzodiazepines
without George’s knowledge and when the latter fell asleep, the accused repeatedly hit
George with a rolling pin that caused profuse bleeding, but George was able to run away
for his safety. During trial, the accused claimed self-defense.

Issue: Was accused guilty of attempted murder?

Held: Yes. Accused’s claim of self-defense does not merit. It is settled that a person
invoking self-defense admits to having inflicted hard upon another person. It then
becomes incumbent upon the accused to prove by clear and convincing evidence, the
elements of self-defense.


People of the Philippines v CCC

G.R. No. 231925
November 19, 2018

Facts: AAA, the victim and her twin sister were born to their parents, CCC and BBB.
The twins were raised by a foster mother until they were 11 years old, when they were
sent home to their biological parents because they allegedly stole something from their
foster mother. One day, when AAA was 15 years old, she was asleep when CCC carried
her downstairs to his bed. CCC then undressed her and had sex with her, and repeated
the deed several times on different dates.

Issue: Did CCC commit rape?

Held: Yes. Under the RPC, par 1(a), Art 266-A, the elements of rape are: 1. the the
offender had carnal knowledge with a woman; 2. such act was accomplished through
force, threat or intimidation. However, when the offender is the victim’s father, there
need not be actual force, threat or intimidation, because when a father commits the
odious crime of rape against his own daughter, who was also a minor at the time of the
commission of the offense, his moral ascendancy or influence over the latter substitutes
for violence and intimidation.
People of the Philippines v Bong Chan and Elmo Chan
G.R. No. 226836
December 5, 2018

Facts: Bong and Elmo were charged with kidnapping and serious illegal detention under
Art 267 of the RPC. Allegedly, conspiring with each other and after threatening to kill
the victim, they clubbed Reynard with pieces of bamboo until he was rendered
unconscious and thereafter, the accused placed his body in a sack and carried him away
depriving him of his liberty against his will and continued to detain and hide him illegally.

Issue: Whether Bong and Elmo committed kidnapping and serious illegal detention.

Held: Yes. Under the RPC, the elements of kidnapping and serious illegal detention are
as follows: 1. the offender is a private individual; 2. he kidnaps or detains another or in
any other manner deprives the victim of his liberty; 3. the act of kidnapping or detention
is illegal; and 4. in the commission of the offense, any of the following are present: a. the
kidnapping lasts for more than three days; b. it is committed by simulating public
authority; c. serious physical injuries are inflicted or threats to kill are made; or d. the
person kidnapped or detained is a minor, female or public officer. Actual taking indicates
an intention to deprive the victim of his liberty.

People of the Philippines v Nady Magallan, Jr. Y Flores and Romeo Tapar y
G.R. No. 220721
December 10, 2018

Facts: Magallano and Tapar were charged with murder. Allegedly, the accused while
armed with a hard object and a bladed weapon killed Ronnie with treachery.

Issue: Did the accused commit murder?

Held: No. The essence of treachery is the swift and unexpected attach on the unarmed
victim without the slightest provocation on his part. For treachery to be appreciated as a
qualifying circumstances, two things must be proven: 1. that during the attack the victim
could not have defended himself from the offender; and 3. that the offender deliberately
chose a form of attach which would render him immune from risk or retaliation by the
victim. The prosecution failed to show presence of treachery as a qualifying
circumstances. The prosecution did not present evidence that would show the accused
reflected and decided on their form of attack.

People of the Philippines v Orlando Tagle

G.R. No. 229348
November 19, 2018

Facts: Tagle was charged with rape. The prosecution alleged that around midnight of
May 2007, AAA was invited by her friend to get some clothes from a certain Mata. Upon
arrival thereat, Mata invited AAA and her friend to join a drinking spree and thereafter,
brought them to an unlighted grassy area where Tagle and 4 other male individuals were
drinking. After an hour, Mata and the other male individuals held AAA, then Tagle,
whilst threatening her with a knife, removed her short pants and had carnal knowledge
with her. When he was finished, the other male individuals took turns ravishing her as

Issue: Whether or not Tagle is guilty of rape.

Held: Yes. Tagle was charged of the crime of qualified rape under Article 266-A, par 1, in
relation to Art. 266-B of the RPC. The prosecution established that: a. offender had
carnal knowledge of a woman; and b. he accomplished this act through force, threat or
intimidation, or when the victim was deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious, or by
means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse of authority, or when the victim is
under 12 years old of age or is demented. Essentially, the gravamen of rape is sexual
intercourse with a woman against her will.

People of the Philippines v Talib-og y Tuganan

G.R. No. 238112
December 5, 2018

Facts: Accused was charged with statutory rape and charged with three additional counts
in separate informations. AAA recalled that one evening, she and her younger sibling
were sleeping in their house while their father was out drinking and her mother was in
Jolo. She was awakened by the accused removing her panty, and covered her mouth with
his left hand. Thereafter, accused inserted his right hand finger into her vagina and left.
She recognized accused as Dodoy, her father’s friend. On another occasion the same
incident happened, and in another evening, accused inserted his organ into her vagina.
Accused proffered the defense of denial.

Issue: Was the accused guilty of the crime charged.

Held: Yes. AAA’s direct, positive, and straightforward narration of the incidents in detail
prevails over accused’s unsubstantiated allegations. Likewise, accused was correctly
convicted for two counts of rape by sexual assault instead of statutory rape. However, in
accordance with jurisprudence, the penalty under Art III, Sec 5(b) of RA 7610 shall be
imposed in a conviction for rape by sexual assault where the victim is a minor.

People of the Philippines v Villaros y Caranto

G.R. No. 228779
October 8, 2018

Facts: Two separate informations were filed against the accused for the rape of minor
AAA. Allegedly, the victim went inside the bathroom beside the room of the accused.
She was still there when Villaros peeped inside. He then asked her to buy him cigarettes,
and when she handed them to him, he pulled the victim inside the bedroom and closed
the door. Accused covered her mouth and forcibly had sex with her. The accused warned
the victim that if she would tell anyone he would hurt the victim’s siblings. The victim
was already 3 months pregnant when her relatives discovered about what happened to

Issue: Did the RTC and CA err in convicting the accused?

Held: No. The conviction of the accused was affirmed as the prosecution was able to
prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt. The two elements of rape: 1. that the offender
had carnal knowledge of the girl, and 2. that such act was accomplished through force or
intimidation are both present and duly proven.


People of the Philippines v Bandojo
G.R. No. 234161
October 17, 2018

Facts: Accused was charged before the RTC with the crimes of qualified trafficking in
persons and trafficking in persons. Allegedly, the recruited and hired AAA, a 17-year old
minor to engage in sexual intercourse with male clients for monetary consideration.

Issue: Whether the prosecution was able to prove beyond reasonable dount the guilt of
accused for the crime of human trafficking.

Held: Yes. It was established during the trial that the accused recruited and hired AAA, a
17-year-old girl, to prostitute herself to paying customers, taking advantage of the latter’s
minority, lack of discernment, and financial hardships. Thus, the prosecution was able to
prove beyond reasonable doubt the existence of all elements constituting a violation of
Section 4(A), in relation to Section10(a) of RA No. 9208. Qualified trafficking in persons
is committed when the trafficked person is a child.

People of the Philippines v Marlon

G.R. No. 212819
November 28, 2018

Facts: Accused was charged with illegal sale of dangerous drugs under Section 5 , Art II
of RA 9165. In a buy-bust operation, the informant talked to Marco about obtaining
shabu. Marco then took from his pocket a white crystalline substance and handed it to
the informant’s companion, which was P01 Kalbi, who in exchange, gave P500 which
had been marked with his initials, “PK”. After that, P01 Kalbi removed his cap as a
pre-arranged signal and other members of the team immediately arrested Marco and
brought him to the police station.

Issue: Whether Marco was correctly convicted for violation of Section 5, Article II of RA

Held: No. Accused was acquitted. In cases involving dangerous drugs, the confiscated
drug constitutes the very corpus delicti of the offense and the fact of its existence is vital
to sustain a judgment of conviction. It is essential, therefore, that the integrity of the
seized drugs be established with moral uncertainty. Thus, in order to obviate doubt, the
prosecution has to show an unbroken chain of custody over the same and account for
each link the chain of custody from the moment the drugs were seized up to their
presentation in court as evidence.

People of the Philippines v Cochlain

G.R. No. 229071
December 10, 2018

Facts: Cochlain was a 53-year old Irish national married to a Filipina and was charged
with illegal possession of marijuana. According to prosecution, the security officer of the
airport was told that the parking space in front of the departure area smelled like
marijuana. He saw a certain male Caucasian at the parking area lighting something
unrecognizable as he was covering it with his palm. Later on, on the screening area,
Cochlain was frisked and the officer felt something inside the pocket of his upper
garment which contained a pack of Marlboro red which contained cigarettes as well as
rolled sticks of dried marijuana leaves.

Issue: Was there substantial compliance with the chain of custody rule?

Held: Yes. The prosecution was able to prove, through documentary and testimonial
evidence, that the integrity and evidentiary value of the seized items were properly
preserved. Upon confiscation of the marijuana, the officer put them on the nearby
screening table and the sticks were the only items placed n the table. It should be
emphasized that the officer is an airport screening officer and not a police officer who is
authorized to arrest or apprehend. Hence, he should not be considered as the
“apprehending officer” who must immediately mark and conduct physical inventory and
photograph the seized items conformably with Section 21 of RA No. 9165 and its IRR.

People v Arciaga
G.R. No. 239471
January 14, 2019

Facts: The PDEA conducted a buy-bust operation against Arciaga at his house, during
which 1 heat-sealed plastic sachet containing suspected shabu as recovered from him.
Subsequently, a search incidental to his arrest yielded 3 more heat-sealed plastic sachets
containing the suspected shabu. As the PDEA team noticed a crowd forming outside the
house, together with Arciaga they proceeded to PDEA-RO 7 Office where the seized
items were marked, photographed, and inventoried in the presence of the Barangay
Captain and some media personnel. The items were brought to the crime lab for
examination and tested positive for shabu.

Issue: Was there due compliance with Section 21 of R.A. No. 9165?

Held: No. As part of the chain of custody procedure, the law requires that the marking,
physical inventory, and photography of the seized items be conducted immediately after
seizure and confiscation of the same. Under the IRR on the other hand, the procedure
may instead be conducted at the place where the arrest or seizure occurred, at the nearest
police station or at the nearest office of the apprehending officer/team, whichever is
practicable, in instances of warrantless seizures — such as in buy-bust operations. In fact,
case law recognizes that "marking upon immediate confiscation contemplates even
marking at the nearest police station or office of the apprehending team. The failure to
immediately mark the confiscated items at the place of arrest neither renders them
inadmissible in evidence nor impairs the integrity of the seized drugs, as the conduct of
marking at the nearest police station or office of the apprehending team is sufficient
compliance with the rules on chain of custody.

Esteban Reyes v People of the Philippines

G.R. No. 232678
July 3, 2019

Facts: An information was filed against Reyes for violation of Sec 5(e), par. 2 of R.A.
9262. Afterwards, a Temporary Protection Order (TPO) was issued by the RTC directing
Reyes to resume the delivery of monthly financial support to private complainant, AAA,
in the amount of P20,000 to be deducted from his net salary. Reyes then filed a Motion
to Quash alleging no violation of Section 5(i).

Issue: Were the elements of violation of Section 5(i) sufficiently alleged in the

Held: Yes. The Information stated in no uncertain terms that: (1) the offended party,
AAA, is the wife of the offender Reyes; (2) AAA sustained mental and emotional anguish;
and (3) such anguish is inflicted by offender Reyes when he deliberately and unlawfully
denied AAA with financial support. Indeed, criminal liability for violation of Section 5 (e)
of R.A. No. 9262 attaches when the accused deprives the woman of financial support
which she is legally entitled to. Deprivation or denial of support, by itself, is already
specifically penalized therein.

People of the Philippines v Mora

G.R. No. 242682
July 1, 2019

Facts: Mora and Polvoriza were charged of the crime of Qualified Trafficking in Persons
penalized under Section 4(e) in relation to Section 6(e) of RA 9208. The two allegedly
hired and maintained AAA at a bar by way of deception and taking advantage of AAA’s
minority (16 years old), and employed AAA as a prostitute at the bar. Polvoriza
maintained that it was AAA who expressed desire to work at the bar and that she initially
declined; but she let AAA stay because she was nice. AAA even presented a health card
and it was only when Polvariza was arrested that she learned of AAA’s true identity.

Issue: Were Mora and Polvoriza guilty of Qualified Trafficking in Persons?

Held: Yes. Section 3 (a) of RA 9208 defines the term "Trafficking in Persons" as the
"recruitment, transportation, transfer or harboring, or receipt of persons with or without
the victim's consent or knowledge. Mora and Polvoriza's insistence that it was AAA who
voluntarily presented herself to work as an entertainer/sex worker is untenable as
trafficking in persons can still be committed even if the victim gives consent — most
especially in cases where the victim is a minor. Case law instructs that the victim's
consent is rendered meaningless due to the coercive, abusive, or deceptive means
employed by perpetrators of human trafficking.

Lucman v People of the Philippines

G.R. No. 238815
March 18, 2019

Facts: Private complainants went to the office of Lucman, then OIC-Regionall Executive
Director of the DENR, Region XII to discuss with the latter their applications for the
issuance of Free Patent title. During said meeting, Lucman allegedly demanded 2M to
grant their applications. However, despite payment of 1.5M, their applications remained
pending. Hence, complainants filed a complaint before the Prosecutor of General Santos
City. The Sandiganbayan found Lucman guilty of violating Sec 3(c) of RA 2019.
Issue: Was the SB correct in convicting Lucman?

Held: Yes. The elements of the crime under Section 3 of RA 3019 are as follows: (1) the
offender is a public officer; (2) he has secured or obtained, or would secure or obtain, for
a person any government permit or license; (3) he directly or indirectly requested or
received from said person any gift, present or other pecuniary or material benefit for
himself or for another; and (4) he requested or received the gift, present or other
pecuniary or material benefit in consideration for help given or to be given. The SC is
convinced that the SB correctly convicted Lucman for violating Section 3(c) of RA 2019.