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People vs. Gacott, Jr. G.R. No. 116049, July 13, 1995

Facts: For failure to check citations of the prosecutions, the order of respondent RTC Judge Eustaquio Gacott Jr
dismissing a criminal case was annulled by the Supreme Court. The respondent judge was also sanctioned with a
reprimand and a fine of PHP 10k for gross ignorance of law. The judgment was made by the Second Division of the
Supreme Court.

Issue: Whether or not the Second Division of the Supreme Court has the competence to administratively discipline
respondent judge?

Decision: To require the entire court to deliberate upon and participate in all administrative matter or cases regardless
of the sanctions, imposable or imposed, would result in a congested docket and undue delay in the adjudication of cases
in the Court, especially in administrative matters, since even cases involving the penalty of reprimand would require
action by the Court En Banc.


A.M. No. 198-J May 31, 1971 30 SCRA 106

Facts: Administrative complaint filed by one Paz M. Garcia against the Honorable Catalino Macaraig, Jr., formerly Judge
of the Court of First Instance of Laguna, Branch VI. Respondent took his oath as Judge of the Court of First Instance of
Laguna and San Pablo City on June 29, 1970. The court was a newly created CFI branch and it had to be organized from
scratch. Under Section 190 of the Revised Administrative Code, space for his courtroom, other items and supplies must
be furnished by the provincial government. The provincial officials of Laguna, however, informed the respondent that
the province was not in a position to do so. Forces and circumstances beyond his control prevented him from
discharging his judicial duties. When respondent realized that it would be sometime before he could actually preside
over his court, he applied for an extended leave. Secretary of Justice, however, prevailed upon respondent to forego his
leave and instead to assist him, without being extended a formal detail, whenever respondent was not busy attending to
the needs of his court.

Issue: Whether or not respondent should be charged for dishonesty, violation of his oath of office, gross incompetence,
and violation of RA 296 of the Judiciary Act of 1948.

Ruling: Court is convinced that the complaint must be dismissed. Complainant's theory is that respondent collected or
received salaries as judge when in fact he has never acted as such, since the date he took his oath up to the filing of the
complaint. In the sense that respondent has not yet performed any judicial function, it may be admitted that respondent
has not really performed the duties of judge. What is lost sight of, however, is that after taking his oath and formally
assuming this position as judge, respondent had a perfect right to earn the salary of a judge even in the extreme
supposition that he did not perform any judicial function. In this case, government officials or officers in duty are bound
to furnish him the necessary place and facilities for his court and the performance of his functions have failed to provide
him therewith without any fault on his part.

G.R. No. 78780 July 23 1987 [Salaries of the members of Judiciary, Tax Exemption]

Nitafan and some others, duly qualified and appointed judges of the RTC, NCR, all with stations in Manila, seek to
prohibit and/or perpetually enjoin the Commissioner of Internal Revenue and the Financial Officer of the Supreme
Court, from making any deduction of withholding taxes from their salaries.

They submit that "any tax withheld from their emoluments or compensation as judicial officers constitutes a decrease or
diminution of their salaries, contrary to the provision of Section 10, Article VIII of the 1987 Constitution mandating that
during their continuance in office, their salary shall not be decreased," even as it is anathema to the Ideal of an
independent judiciary envisioned in and by said Constitution."

ISSUE: Whether or not members of the Judiciary are exempt from income taxes.

No. The salaries of members of the Judiciary are subject to the general income tax applied to all taxpayers. Although
such intent was somehow and inadvertently not clearly set forth in the final text of the 1987 Constitution, the
deliberations of the1986 Constitutional Commission negate the contention that the intent of the framers is to revert to
the original concept of non-diminution´ of salaries of judicial officers. Justices and judges are not only the citizens whose
income has been reduced in accepting service in government and yet subject to income tax. Such is true also of Cabinet
members and all other employees.
IN RE GONZALES 160 SCRA 771 (1988)

Case Digest: G.R. No. L-25024. March 30, 1970. 32 SCRA 188
Teodoro C. Santiago, JR. minor, represented by his mother, Angelita C. Santiago, petitioner-appellant, vs. Juanita
Bautista, Rosalinda Alpas, Rebecca Matugas, Milkita Inamac, Romeo Agustin, Aida Camino, Luna Sarmago, Aurora
Lorena, Soledad Francisco and Mr. Flor Marcelo, respondents-appellees.

Facts: Appellant Teodoro Santiago, Jr. was a pupil in Grade Six at the public school named Sero Elementary School in
Cotabato City. As the school year 1964-1965 was then about to end, the "Committee on the Rating of Students for
Honor" was constituted by the teachers concerned at said school for the purpose of selecting the "honor students" of its
graduating class. With the school Principal, Mrs. Aurora Lorena, as chairman, and Juanita Bautista, Rosalinda Alpas,
Rebecca Matugas, Milkita Inamac, Romeo Agustin, Aida Camino and Luna Sarmago, as members, the above-named
committee deliberated and finally adjudged Socorro Medina, Patricia Liñgat and Teodoro C. Santiago, Jr. as first, second
and third honors, respectively. The school's graduation exercises were thereafter set for May 21, 1965; but three days
before that date, the "third placer" Teodoro Santiago, Jr., represented by his mother, and with his father as counsel,
sought the invalidation of the "ranking of honor students."

Issue: Whether or not there is an actual cause of action for petition for certiorari.

Ruling: No. The court held to sustain the order of dismissal appealed from for failure on the part of appellant to comply
with the requirements of Section 1 of Rule 65. To be sure, the lower court's holding that appellant's failure to
accompany his petition with a copy of the judgment or order subject thereof together with copies of all pleadings and
documents relevant and pertinent thereto "is fatal to his cause" is supported not only by the provision of that Rule but
by precedents as well.

Ramon Felipe vs. Jose Leuterio May 30, 1952 92 SCRA 482 Ponente: Justice Bengzon
Facts: On March 12, 1950 an inter-collegiate oratorical competition was held in Naga City. Felipe was one of the Judges
and was the chairman. Nosce was awarded the first price and Imperial the second price. Imperial addressed a letter to
the Board of Judges protesting the verdict and alleged that one of the judges committed a mathematical error on
computing the scores. The Board refused to amend their award, Imperial filed a complaint in court. She asserts that she
should have ranked 3rd place in the vote, which makes her score 9 or the First place.

Issue: Whether the RTC reverse the decision of the board of judges to obtain a new award?
Held: Members of the court sometimes are members of the board of judges in an oratorical contest. But it is
UNWRITTEN in the law that in such contests the decisions of the board of judges be final and cannot be appealed. The
contestants do not have the right to the prizes because theirs is only a privilege to compete for the prize and did not
become a demandable right. The respondent judge erred in his reasoning that where there is a wrong there is remedy.
To quote “The flaw in his reasoning lies in the assumption that Imperial suffered some wrong at the hands of the board
of judges. If at all, there was error on the part of one judge, at most. Error and wrong do not mean the same thing.
"Wrong" as used in the aforesaid legal principle is the deprivation or violation of a right. As stated before, a contestant
has no right to the prize unless and until he or she is declared winner by the board of referees or judges. Granting that
Imperial suffered some loss or injury, yet in law there are instances of "damnum absque injuria". This is one of them. If
fraud or malice had been proven, it would be a different proposition. But then her action should be directed against the
individual judge or judges who fraudulently or maliciously injured her. Not against the other judges.”


Consing v. Court of Appeals, 177SCRA 14 (1989)

Fast facts
Merlin Consing (pet) sold a house and lot to Caridad Santos. Provided in their contract of sale were particular terms of
payment in which the purchase price shall be paid (installment basis, plus interest). In the process, Santos defaulted in
her payments. Consing demanded for her payment and had planned to resort to court litigation. Santos expressed her
willingness to settle her obligation. However, this is upon the condition that the Consings comply with all the laws and
regulations on subdivision and after payment to her damages as a consequence of the use of a portion of her lot as a
subdivision road. In response, the Consings submitted a revised subdivision plan.

Contention c/o Consing

CA did not comply with the certification requirement.

Purpose of certification requirement

• To ensure that all court decisions are reached after consultation with members of the court en banc or division, as the
case may be
• To ensure that the decision is rendered by a court as a whole, not merely by a member of the same
• To ensure that decisions are arrived only after deliberation, exchange of ideas, and concurrence of majority vote

Issue: WON Court erred in arriving to its conclusion without meeting certification requirement
Held & Ratio: The certification is a new provision introduced by the framers of the 1987 Constitution. Its purpose is to
ensure the implementation of the constitutional requirement that decisions of the Supreme Court and lower collegiate
courts, such as the Court of Appeals, Sandiganbayan and Court of Tax Appeals, are reached after consultation with the
members of the court sitting en banc or in a division before the case is assigned to a member thereof for decision-
writing. The decision is thus rendered by the court as a body and not merely by a member thereof [I Record of the
Constitutional Commission 498-500], This is in keeping with the very nature of a collegial body which arrives at its
decisions only after deliberation, the exchange of views and ideas, and the concurrence of the required majority vote.
The absence, however, of the certification would not necessarily mean that the case submitted for decision had not
been reached in consultation before being assigned to one member for the writing of the opinion of the Court since the
regular performance of official duty is presumed [Sec. 5 (m) of Rule 131, Rules of Court]. The lack of certification at the
end of the decision would only serve as evidence of failure to observe the certification requirement and may be basis for
holding the official responsible for the omission to account therefor [See I Record of the Constitutional Commission
460]. Such absence of certification would not have the effect of invalidating the decision.



PEOPLE v. BUGARIN G.R. No. 224900

FACTS: The case was about the allege murder of Nestor Bugarin against Esmeraldo Pontatar, Cristito Pontanar and the
attempted murder against Maria Pontanar. Bugarin was said to be seen by some witnesses carrying an unlicensed
firearm, after having shot and killed Esmeraldo and Cristito Pontatar and after seriously injuring Marian Pontatar. During
trial, it was proven that, Bugarin, with deliberate intent, intent to kill, with treachery, evident premeditation, and
without regard to the victim’s age and rank, suddenly and un expectedly assaulted the said victims, which resulted to
the death of Esmeraldo and Cristito Pontanar and seriously injuring Maria Pontatar. Bugarin, in his defense, stated that
he only acted in self-defense, which he was not able to prove.

RTC- Found him guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of two counts of murder and one attempted murder.
CA- affirmed the decision of RTC.

ISSUE: Is the CA correct?

HELD: SC held in the positive. During trial it was proved beyond reasonable doubt, that, the petitioner was guilty of two
counts of murder and one attempted murder. The defense of the petitioner that he acted in self-defense was not
sufficiently proved during trial. Hence, the court finds the petitioner guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of two
counts of murder and one attempted murder.

YAO VS CA GR 132428
A complaint charging Judge Lilia C. Lopez of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 109, Pasay City, with violation of the
Constitution, serious misconduct, inefficiency, and falsification in connection with her decision in Criminal Case No. 91-
0716 entitled "People of the Philippines v. Engineer Fernando S. Dizon."

April 22, 1993, judgment was rendered, convicting complainant of falsification of private document. The promulgation of
the judgment consisted of reading the dispositive portion of the decision sentencing him to imprisonment, without
serving a copy of the decision on him.
The judgment consisted of reading the dispositive portion of the decision sentencing him to imprisonment, without
serving a copy of the decision on him. The accused and his counsel were told to return in a few days for their copy of the
decision, but although petitioner and his father by turns went to the court to obtain a copy of the decision they were not
able to do so.
Complainant alleges that the failure of respondent judge to furnish him a copy of the decision until almost one year and
eight months after the promulgation of its dispositive portion on April 22, 1993 constitutes a violation of Art. VIII, Sec.14
of the Constitution which prohibits courts from rendering decisions without expressing therein clearly and distinctly the
facts and law on which they are based and Sec.15 of the same Art. VIII, which provides that in all cases lower courts
must render their decisions within three months from the date of their submission.
Judge Lopez claims that on April 22, 1993, when the judgment was promulgated with the reading of the dispositive
portion, her decision was already prepared, although to prevent leakage in the process of preparing it, she withheld its
dispositive portion until the day of its promulgation. Respondent judge states that after the dispositive portion had been
read to complainant, respondent gave it to Ma. Cleotilde Paulo (Social Worker II, presently OIC of Branch 109) for typing
and incorporation into the text of the decision. The court found complainant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of
falsification of private document under Art. 172, par. 2 of the Revised Penal Code. Respondent states that the delay in
furnishing complainant with a copy of the decision was unintentional.
The Deputy Court Administration believes that Judge Lopez should be given admonition for her negligence, but
recommends that the other charges against her for violation of the Constitution, serious misconduct, and falsification be
dismissed for lack of merit.

Whether or not the respondent violated Art. VIII, 15(1) of the Constitution. YES.

The Court finds that respondent violated Art. VIII, 15(1) of the Constitution which provides:

All cases or matters filed after the effectivity of this Constitution must be decided or resolved within twenty-four months
from date of submission for the Supreme Court, and, unless reduced by the Supreme Court, twelve months for all lower
collegiate courts and three months for all other lower courts.
It is clear that merely reading the dispositive portion of the decision to the accused is not sufficient. It is the judgment
that must be read to him, stating the facts and the law on which such judgment is based. However, the Court finds the
other charges against respondent to be without merit.
First, the claim that complainant was deprived of his right to a speedy trial by reason of respondent's failure to furnish
him with a copy of the decision until after one year and eight months is without basis. Second, the delay in furnishing
complainant a copy of the complete decision did not prejudice his right to appeal or file a motion for reconsideration.
Nonetheless, certain factors mitigate respondent judge's culpability. Except for this incident, respondent's record of
public service as legal officer and agent of the National Bureau of Investigation, as State Prosecutor, and later Senior
State Prosecutor, of the Department of Justice for 17 years and as Regional Trial Judge for more than 13 years now is
unmarred by malfeasance, misfeasance or wrongdoing.
In view of the foregoing, respondent is hereby REPRIMANDED with WARNING that repetition of the same acts
complained of will be dealt with more severely.