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The Berry Rule pertains to the filing of motion for new trial based on newly discovered
evidence which cannot be produced in court despite exercise of due diligence, and if
considered, would probably alter the outcome of the case.
In the case of Berry v. State of Georgia, the Court's guidelines with regard to a new trial
which may be granted on the ground of newly discovered evidence was discussed.
According to the aforesaid case, the Court must be shown the following: [1] That the
evidence was discovered after trial; [2] That such evidence could not had been discovered
and produced at the trial even with the exercise of reasonable diligence; [3] That it
material, not merely cumulative, corroborative, or impeaching, and [4] The evidence is of
such weight that it would probably change the judgment if admitted.
In Custodio v Sandiganbayan, the Supreme Court applied the Berry Rule and found
that the petitioners' purported evidence does not qualify as newly discovered
evidence that would justify the re-opening of the case and the holding of a third trial
because the petitioners failed to show that it was impossible for them to secure an
independent forensic study of the physical evidence during the trial of the double
murder case. It appears from their report that the forensic group used the same
physical and testimonial evidence offered during the trial, but made their own
analysis and interpretation of said evidence. [Custodio v. Sandiganbayan, G.R. Nos.
96027-28 (Resolution), March 8, 2005]
In Dinglasan, Jr. v. Court of Appeals, the Supreme Court applied the Berry Rule in
ruling that the claim of Dinglasan that the alleged evidence sought to be presented
in this case was recently discovered is a falsity. It is a desperate attempt to mislead
this Court to give due course to a cause that has long been lost. Dinglasan appeals
for the compassion of this Court but never did so in good faith. It is contrary to
human experience to have overlooked an evidence which was decisively claimed to
have such significance that might probably change the judgment. The records are
very clear. The transmittal letter dated 8 October 1985 was already offered as
evidence in CA-G.R. CR No. 14138 and was even annexed to the Petition for Review
filed before the Court of Appeals as Annex "B." Irrefragably, the letter dated 8
October 1985 is not newly discovered. It is an attempt to raise again a defense
which was already weighed by the appellate court. A contrary ruling may open the
floodgates to an endless review of decisions, where losing litigants, in delaying the
disposition of cases, invoke evidence already presented, whether through a motion
for reconsideration or for a new trial, in guise of newly discovered evidence.
[Dinglasan, Jr. v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 145420, September 19, 2006]