G.R. No. 126252
August 30, 1999
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, vs. JESUS GARCIA !ANA"AT FACTS# For review is the conviction of accused-appellant JESUS GARCIA !A"A#A$ for ille%al possession of five &'( )ilos of *ari+uana for which he was initiall sentenced to death. $hat on or a,out the -.th da of "ove*,er, /001, in the Cit of #a%uio, 2hilippines, and within the +urisdiction of this 3onora,le Court, the a,ove-na*ed accused, did then and there willfull , unlawfull and feloniousl have in his possession, custod and control five &'( )ilos of co*pressed *ari+uana dried leaves, without the authorit of law to do so. $he prosecutions case hin%es on the testi*on of Senior Inspector 45I6ER E"!47IAS. 3e recounted that on "ove*,er -., /001, he and S248 J4SE 2A"GA"I#A" ,oarded a passen%er +eepne fro* their office in Ca*p 7an%wa, 5a $rinidad, #en%uet, en route to #a%uio Cit . 3e too) the seat ,ehind the +eepne driver while S248 2an%ani,an sat opposite hi*. $he were in civilian attire. 9hen the +eepne reached :*. 1 or ', accused JESUS GARCIA ,oarded the +eepne carr in% a plastic ,a%. 3e occupied the front seat, ,eside the driver and placed the plastic ,a% on his lap. After a couple of *inutes, the police*en s*elled *ari+uana which see*ed to e*anate fro* accused;s ,a%. $o confir* their suspicion, the decided to follow accused when he %ets off the +eepne . $he accused ali%hted at the #a%uio cit hall and the police officers trailed hi*. $he accused proceeded to Ri<al 2ar) and sat , the *onu*ent. 3alf a *eter awa , the police officers saw the accused retrieve a %reen travellin% ,a% fro* the ,ac) poc)et of his pants. 3e then transferred five &'( pac)a%es wrapped in newspaper fro* the plastic ,a% to the %reen ,a%. As the newspaper wrapper of one of the pac)a%es was partiall torn, the police officers saw the content of the pac)a%e. It appeared to ,e *ari+uana. Forthwith, the police*en approached the accused and identified the*selves. $he accused appeared to ,e nervous and did not i**ediatel respond. $he police*en then as)ed the accused if the could inspect his travellin% ,a%. $he accused surrendered his ,a% and the inspection revealed that it contained five &'( ,ric)s of what appeared to ,e dried *ari+uana leaves. $he police officers then arrested the accused and sei<ed his ,a%. $he accused ad*itted ,ein% at the locus criminis ,ut denied possessin% *ari+uana or carr in% an ,a%. 3e alle%ed that on said da , at a,out .=>> a.*., he left his residence in An%eles Cit to visit his ,rother, "IC: GARCIA, who* he had not seen for ten &/>( ears. 3e arrived in #a%uio Cit at /-=8> p.*. #efore proceedin% to his ,rother;s house, he too) a stroll at the Ri<al 2ar). At a,out -=>> p.*., two &-( *en accosted hi* at the par). $he did not identif the*selves as police officers. $he held his hands and ordered hi* to %o with the*. 7espite his protestations, he was forci,l ta)en to a waitin% car and ,rou%ht to a safehouse. $here, he was as)ed a,out the source of his suppl of illicit dru%s. 9hen he denied )nowled%e of the cri*e i*puted to hi*, he was ,rou%ht to a dar) roo* where his hands were tied, his feet ,ound to a chair, his *outh covered , tape and his e es ,lindfolded. $he started *aulin% hi*. Initiall , he clai*ed he was )ic)ed and punched on the chest and thi%hs. 9hen as)ed further whether he suffered ,ruises and ,ro)en ri,s, he answered in the ne%ative. $hereafter, he e?plained that there were no visi,le si%ns of ph sical a,use on his ,od as he was onl punched, not )ic)ed. "otwithstandin% the
*altreat*ent he suffered, the accused clai*ed he stood fir* on his denial that he was dealin% with illicit dru%s. ISSUE# 9hether or not the police is %uilt of ar,itrar detention &Art. /-' R2C( HEL$# Firstly, appellant pointed out that if the police officers indeed s*ell and the *ari+uana he was alle%edl carr in% while the were all on ,oard the +eepne , the should have i**ediatel arrested hi* instead of waitin% for hi* to ali%ht and stroll at the Ri<al 2ar). Secondly, appellant faulted the procedure adopted , the arrestin% officers who, after the arrest, too) hi* to the CIS office at the #a%uio 9ater 7istrict Co*pound for investi%ation instead of ,rin%in% hi* to the nearest police station, as *andated under Section ', Rule //8 of the Rules on Cri*inal 2rocedure. Finally, appellant theori<ed that the prosecution;s o*ission or failure to present the other arrestin% officer, S248 2an%ani,an, to corro,orate the testi*on of its witness Senior Inspector En*odias was fatal to the prosecution;s case as the lone testi*on of En*odias failed to prove his %uilt ,e ond reasona,le dou,t. $hese contentions of appellant fail to persuade. $he police officers, without co*pro*isin% their sworn dut to enforce the law, the police officers e?ercised reasona,le prudence and caution in desistin% to apprehend appellant inside the +eepne when the initiall suspected he was in possession of *ari+uana. $he sou%ht to verif further their suspicion and decided to trail appellant when the latter ali%hted fro* the +eepne . It was onl after the saw that one of the pac)a%es with the torn wrapper contained what loo)ed li)e *ari+uana fruitin% tops did the accost appellant and *a)e the arrest. At that precise ti*e, the had o,tained personal )nowled%e of circu*stances indicatin% that appellant had illicit dru%s in his possession. $he had reasona,le %round upon which to ,ase a lawful arrest without a warrant. "either can the police officers ,e held lia,le for ar,itraril detainin% appellant at the CIS office. Article /-' of the Revised 2enal Code, as a*ended, penali<es a pu,lic officer who shall detain another for so*e le%al %round and fail to deliver hi* to the proper authorities for [email protected]
hours for cri*es punisha,le , afflictive or capital penalties. A%ELLA GARCIA &. CA A't.1(1, 1(2 FACTS# 2etitioner Avella Garcia &Avella( was char%ed with Falsification of a 2rivate 7ocu*ent, defined and penali<ed under Article /A- &-(, in relation to Article /A/ &@(, of the Revised 2enal Code. $he accusator portion reads=
$hat on or a,out the *onth of Januar , /00/ in 2asa Cit , 2hilippines , A,ella Garcia, ,ein% then in possession of a receipt for Five $housand 2esos dated Januar -/, /00/ issued , one Al,erto Bui+ada, Jr. as partial down pa *ent of the sale of a house and lot situated at "o. [email protected]
2. Go*e< St.,
!andalu on%, !etro !anila , Al,ert Bui+ada, Jr. to accused, said accused then and there wilfull , unlawfull and feloniousl and with intent to defraud and da*a%e Al,erto Bui+ada Jr *ade alterations and wrote words, fi%ures and phrases to the ori%inal receipt which co*pletel chan%ed its *eanin% , *a)in% appear thereon that it was issued on Januar -1, /00/ in the a*ount of Fift Five $housand 2esos &2'',>>>.>>( when in truth and in fact, the said accused full well )new that the receipt was onl for the a*ount of Five $housand 2esos.
So*eti*e in earl 4cto,er /00>, a ver,al a%ree*ent was entered into ,etween Al,erto Bui+ada, Jr. &Al,erto( and Avella for the sale of the for*erCs house and lot located at [email protected]
2. Go*e< St., !andalu on%, !etro !anila for the purchase price of 2/.- *illion pesos. 4n 4cto,er -8, /00>, an Dearnest *one E in the a*ount of ten thousand pesos &2/>,>>>( was %iven to Al,erto , Avella. 4n 4cto,er 8/, /00>, the a*ount of one hundred and fift -five thousand pesos &2/'',>>>( was delivered , Avella representin% this ti*e the downpa *ent for the house and lot. A su,seFuent pa *ent of five thousand pesos &2',>>>( was *ade on Januar -/, /00/.
$he relationship ,etween ,u er and seller turned sour. Avella filed a co*plaint for estafa a%ainst Al,erto for his failure to e?ecute a deed of sale and deliver the su,+ect propert . A*on% the evidence she su,*itted was the cop of the receipt she prepared on Januar -/, /00/. 3owever, the receipt appeared to have ,een altered in the followin% *anner= /( the word Dfift E was inserted ,efore the word DfiveE on the second line of the receipt to read Dfift five thousandE instead of Dfive thousandEG -( the nu*,er D'E was inserted ,efore D',>>>.>>E on the third line of the receipt so that it would read D'',>>>.>>EG 8( additional words were inserted in the last sentence of the receipt which reads, D"ow covered , $.C.$. H 800. R.7. !andalu on% !!. the parties a%ree to e?ecute of IsicJ valid deed of conve ance coverin% the sa*e saleEG 1( on the date DJanuar -/E the nu*,er 1 was superi*posed so that it would read as DJanuar -1E insteadG and '( there now appears the a*ount of D'',>>>.>>E and ,elow it the word DvalueE on the upper left hand corner of the receipt.
3avin% noticed the alterations, Al,erto instituted a cri*inal action ,efore the 4ffice of the Cit 2rosecutor of 2asa Cit char%in% that Avella had *ade it appear that he received 2'',>>> when he received onl 2',>>>. "eedless to state, the Cit 2rosecutor found that a prima facie case of violation of Article /A- of the Revised 2enal Code had ,een co**itted , Avella and accordin%l filed the correspondin% Infor*ation. Avella, in her defense, ad*itted that she did in fact alter the receipt ,ut clai*s that it was done in the presence and at the reFuest of Al,erto. 4n Januar -/, /00/, Al,erto, alon% with his sister, ca*e to AvellaCs residence in !andalu on% Cit to as) for additional downpa *ent for the house and lot. At that ti*e she onl had 2',>>> in cash which she handed over to Al,erto and then pro*ised hi* a ,i%%er su* in the future. Avella then hand wrote two receipts which was si%ned , Al,erto and his sister, as evidence of the pa *ent of 2',>>>. 4ne receipt was her cop while the other was for Al,erto. $hree da s later, on Januar -1, /00/, Avella called up !r. Celso Cunanan &Celso(, an architect, fro* who* she as)ed to ,orrow 2'>,>>>. Celso had earlier co**itted
to Avella that he would lend her 2'>,>>>. Celso arrived at her house that evenin% to %ive her the *one . Alread present in the house were Avella, her sister and Al,erto. Celso delivered to Avella 2'>,>>> which the latter, in the for*erCs presence, handed over to Al,erto. 9ith respect to the alteration, Avella e?plained that Al,erto did not have with hi* his cop of the Januar -/, /00/ receipt and so he told her to +ust DaddE in her cop the a*ount of 2'>,>>> to *a)e it 2'',>>>. Avella acceded to the reFuest and *ade the chan%es in front of Al,erto while he was countin% the *one . Avella said she showed the altered receipt to Al,erto ,ut that he was not a,le to affi? his si%nature thereon ,ecause he was in a hurr to leave. AvellaCs account was corro,orated , the testi*on of Celso who declared that all these happened in his presence. Avella further clai*ed that this case was filed a%ainst her in retaliation for the estafa case she filed a%ainst Al,erto. As clai*ed , Avella, she found out that the deed of sale which purportedl transferred ownership of the house and lot to Al,erto was a fa)e. Upon her reFuest, the "ational #ureau of Investi%ation &".#.I.(, Buestioned 7ocu*ents 7ivision, e?a*ined the si%natures of !r. Floro Caceres and !rs. 2aciencia Castor Caceres, the transferees of the su,+ect propert , contained in the deed of sale. In its report the ".#.I. deter*ined that the Fuestioned si%natures and sa*ple si%natures of Floro Caceres and 2aciencia Caceres were not written , one and the sa*e person ISSUE# 9K" Avella is %uilt under Art /A/ and /A- of the R2C HEL$# $he plea lac)s *erit and is denied. $he ele*ents of the cri*e of falsification under Article /A/ &@( of the Revised 2enal Code are= &/( that there ,e an alteration &chan%e( or intercalation &insertion( on a docu*entG &-( that it was *ade on a %enuine docu*entG &8( that the alteration or intercalation has chan%ed the *eanin% of the docu*entG and &1( that the chan%es *ade the docu*ent spea) so*ethin% false. 9hen these are co**itted , a private individual on a private docu*ent the violation would fall under para%raph -, Article /A- of the sa*e code, ,ut there *ust ,e, in addition to the aforesaid ele*ents, independent evidence of da*a%e or intention to cause the sa*e to a third person. Given the ad*issions of Avella that she altered the receipt, and without convincin% evidence that the alteration was with the consent of private co*plainant, the Court holds that all four &1( ele*ents have ,een proven ,e ond reasona,le dou,t. As to the reFuire*ent of da*a%e, this is readil apparent as it was *ade to appear that Al,erto had received 2'>,>>> when in fact he did not. 3ence, AvellaCs conviction. 7E"IE7 and Affir*ed. A!A$EO TETANGCO %. O!"U$S!AN ART.220 FACTS#
$his petition for certiorari see)s to annul and set aside the O')*', of pu,lic respondent 4*,uds*an which dis*issed the Co*plaint of petitioner A*ando $etan%co a%ainst private respondent !a or Jose 5. Atien<a, Jr., for violation of Article --> - of the Revised 2enal Code &R2C(. 4n !arch ., ->>-, petitioner filed his Co*plaint ,efore the 4*,uds*an alle%in% that on Januar [email protected]
, ->>/, private respondent !a or Atien<a %ave 28,>>> cash financial assistance to the chair*an and 2/,>>> to each tanod of Barangay />', Lone ., 7istrict I. Alle%edl , on !arch ', ->>/, !a or Atien<a refunded 2->,>>> or the total a*ount of the financial assistance fro* the Cit of !anila when such dis,urse*ent was not +ustified as a lawful e?pense. In his Counter-Affidavit, !a or Atien<a denied the alle%ations and sou%ht the dis*issal of the Co*plaint for lac) of +urisdiction and for foru*-shoppin%. 3e asserted that it was the Co**ission on Elections &C4!E5EC(, not the 4*,uds*an that has +urisdiction over the case and the sa*e case had previousl ,een filed ,efore the C4!E5EC. Further*ore, the Co*plaint had no verification and certificate of non-foru* shoppin%. $he *a or *aintained that the e?penses were le%al and +ustified, the sa*e ,ein% supported , dis,urse*ent vouchers, and these had passed prior audit and accountin%. $he Investi%atin% 4fficer reco**ended the dis*issal of the Co*plaint for lac) of evidence and *erit. $he 4*,uds*an adopted his reco**endation. $he 4ffice of the 4*,uds*an, throu%h its 4ver-all 7eput petitionerCs *otion for reconsideration. ISSUE# 93E$3ER 4R "4$ $3E RES24"7E"$ 4!#U7S!A" C4!!I$$E7 GRA6E A#USE 4F 7ISCRE$I4" 93E" I$ 7IS!ISSE7 $3E CRI!I"A5 C3ARGE AGAI"S$ RES24"7E"$ !AM4R A$IE"LA F4R 6I45A$I4" 4F AR$. --> 4F $3E R2C 7ES2I$E $3E ENIS$E"CE 4F A PRIMA FACIE CASE A"7 2R4#A#5E CAUSE $4 I"7IC$ 3I! F4R $3E CRI!E C3ARGE7 4R, A$ $3E 6ERM 5EAS$, F4R 6I45A$I4" 4F SEC. 8&e( 4F R.A. "4. 8>/0 &A"$I-GRAF$ A"7 C4RRU2$ 2RAC$ICES AC$(. HEL$# In this case, the action ta)en , the 4*,uds*an cannot ,e characteri<ed as ar,itrar , capricious, whi*sical or despotic. $he 4*,uds*an found no evidence to prove pro,a,le cause. 2ro,a,le cause si%nifies a reasona,le %round of suspicion supported , circu*stances sufficientl stron% in the*selves to warrant a cautious *anCs ,elief that the person accused is %uilt of the offense with which he is char%ed. // 3ere, the Co*plaint *erel alle%ed that the dis,urse*ent for financial assistance was neither authori<ed , law nor +ustified as a lawful e?pense. Co*plainant did not cite an law or ordinance that provided for an ori%inal appropriation of the a*ount used for the financial assistance cited and that it was diverted fro* the appropriation it was intended for. $he Co*plaint char%es !a or Atien<a with ille%al use of pu,lic funds. 4n this *atter, Art. --> of the Revised 2enal Code provides= Art. -->. Illegal use of public funds or property . O An pu,lic officer who shall appl an pu,lic fund or propert under his ad*inistration to an pu,lic use other than that for which 4*,uds*an, li)ewise denied
such fund or propert were appropriated , law or ordinance shall suffer the penalt of prision correccional in its *ini*u* period or a fine ran%in% fro* one-half to the total of the su* *isapplied, if , reason of such *isapplication, an da*a%es or e*,arrass*ent shall have resulted to the pu,lic service. In either case, the offender shall also suffer the penalt of te*porar special disFualification. If no da*a%e or e*,arrass*ent to the pu,lic service has resulted, the penalt fine fro* ' to '> percent of the su* *isapplied. shall ,e a
$he ele*ents of the offense, also )nown as technical *alversation, are= &/( the offender is an accounta,le pu,lic officerG &-( he applies pu,lic funds or propert under his ad*inistration to so*e pu,lic useG and &8( the pu,lic use for which the pu,lic funds or propert were applied is different fro* the purpose for which the were ori%inall appropriated , law or ordinance. It is clear that for technical *alversation to e?ist, it is necessar that pu,lic funds or properties had ,een diverted to an pu,lic use other than that provided for , law or ordinance. $o constitute the cri*e, there *ust ,e a diversion of the funds fro* the purpose for which the had ,een ori%inall appropriated , law or ordinance. 2atentl , the third ele*ent is not present in this case. 7IS!ISSE7 F4R 5AC: 4F !ERI$. SA!ANIEGO % AGUILA 881 SCRA 18. &->>>( AR$. ->1 F+,ts# $he 4ffice of the 2resident %ranted the e?e*ption fro* the covera%e of the P4peration 5and $ransfer 2ro%ra*P the land owned , N. 4n appeal, the CA dis*issed the petition Fuestionin% the decision of the 4ffice for failure to i*plead the 4ffice of the 2resident, as the should ,e considered as indispensa,le parties.
Issu*# 9hether the 4ffice of the 2resident should ,e considered as an indispensa,le part and *ust therefore ,e i*pleaded pursuant to the Rules.
H*-)# "o. An indispensa,le part is a part in interest without who* no final deter*ination can ,e had of an action without that part ,ein% i*pleaded. Indispensa,le parties are those with such an interest in the controvers that a final decree would necessaril affect their ri%hts, or that the court cannot proceed without their presence. PInterestsP within the *eanin% of this rule, should ,e *aterial, directl in issue and to ,e affected , the decree as distin%uished fro* a *ere incidental interest in the Fuestion involved. 4n the other hand, a no*inal or pro for*a part is one who is +oined as a plaintiff or defendant, not ,ecause such part has an real interest on the su,+ect *atter or ,ecause an relief is de*anded, ,ut *erel ,ecause the technical rules of pleadin%s reFuire the presence of such part on the record. In the case at ,ar, the failure to i*plead the 4ffice of the 2resident does not warrant the dis*issal of the case as such is considered as a pro for*a part .
2eople v. !ara*ara
8/A scra --- Art. -'/
FAC$S= $he case is an appeal fro* the decision of the Re%ional $rial Court, !as,ate, !as,ate, convictin% accused-appellant Cresenciano !ara*ara of *urder. $hat on "ove*,er /., /00/, in the evenin% thereof, at #aran%a Calpi, !unicipalit of Claveria, 2rovince of !as,ate, 2hilippines and within the +urisdiction of this 3onora,le Court, the said accused, with intent to )ill, evident pre*editation, treacher and ta)in% advanta%e of ni%htti*e, did then and there wilfull , unlawfull and feloniousl attac), assault and shoot with a hand%un one !i%uelito 7onato, hittin% the latter on the chest, there, inflictin% wound which caused his death. $he prosecution;s version of the )illin% of !i%uelito 7onato, as culled fro* the testi*onies of his oun%er ,rother Ricardo 7onato and father Re%arder 7onato, is as follows= A ,enefit dance sponsored , the Calpi Ele*entar School 2arents-$eachers Association of which accused-appellant is the president, was held in the ard of accused-appellant;s house in #aran%a Calpi, Claveria, !as,ate in the evenin% of "ove*,er /., /00/. At a,out /*idni%ht, while Ricardo 7onato was dancin% with a certain Rowena del Rosario, one 7ante Arce, a friend of accused-appellant, approached Ricardo 7onato and ,o?ed hi* on the chest. Fri%htened, Rowena ran awa while Ricardo 7onato sca*pered toward the fence for safet . !i%uelito 7onato was a,out two &-( *eters awa fro* where Ricardo 7onato sta ed at the fence. "ot for lon%, accused-appellant too) his hand%un tuc)ed in his waist and fired at victi* !i%uelito 7onato, hittin% the latter on the left ,reast. Ricardo 7onato tried to help his fallen ,rother !i%uelito ,ut so*e,od struc) Ricardo;s head with an iron ,ar which )noc)ed hi* out for a,out three &8( *inutes. 9hen Ricardo re%ained consciousness, he hurried ho*e and infor*ed his parents of what happened to their son !i%uelito. Re%arder 7onato, !i%uelito;s father, i**ediatel went to the cri*e scene and rushed !i%uelito to the 2io 7uran 3ospital where the latter died earl in the *ornin% of the ne?t da &"ove*,er /0, /00/(. #efore !i%uelito e?pired, Re%arder 7onato as)ed who shot hi* and !i%uelito replied that it was accused-appellant. $he defense had a different stor . At a,out //=>> in the evenin%, ,rothers Ricardo and !i%uelito 7onato arrived at the ,enefit dance and approached the dancin% pair of Rowena del Rosario and 7ante Arce. $hen Ricardo and !i%uelito %an%ed-up on 7ante Arce. Accusedappellant, who was a,out ei%ht &.( *eters awa , rushed to the scene to pacif the trio. Ricardo held accused-appellant;s hands at his ,ac) and then !i%uelito repeatedl sta,,ed accused-appellant on different parts of his ,od . Accused-appellant re%ained consciousness at the Claveria hospital where 7r. Gil GeQor%a treated hi* for a few da s, then transferred hi* to the 2io 7uran 3ospital. $here was no wa accused-appellant could have resisted !i%uelito;s attac), *uch less was he capa,le of inflictin% in+ur on !i%uelito, since the stron%er Ricardo was holdin% accused-appellant;s hands and was dra%%in% hi* awa while !i%uelito )ept lun%in% a si?-inch ,laded weapon at hi*. ISSUE= 9hether or "ot accused-appellant is lia,le under Art. -'/ 3E57=
$here is no *erit in accused-appellant;s position that he should ,e held lia,le onl for death caused in a tu*ultuous affra under Article -'/ of the Revised 2enal Code. It was in such situation that accused ca*e at the scene and +oined the fra purportedl to pacif the prota%onists when !i%uelito attac)ed hi* causin% four &1( sta, wounds in different parts of his ,od R two on the sto*ach, one on the left nipple, and one on the left ar*. $hen accused-appellant with his hand%un shot !i%uelito. Assu*in% that a ru*,le or a free-for-all fi%ht occurred at the ,enefit dance, Article -'/ of the Revised 2enal Code cannot appl ,ecause prosecution witnesses Ricardo and Re%arder 7onato positivel identified accused-appellant as !i%uelito 7onato;s )iller. 9hile accused-appellant hi*self suffered *ultiple sta, wounds which, at first ,lush, *a lend verit to his clai* that a ru*,le ensued and that victi* !i%uelito inflicted upon hi* these wounds, the evidence is inadeFuate to consider the* as a *iti%atin% circu*stance ,ecause the defense;s version stands discredited in li%ht of the *ore credi,le version of the prosecution as to the circu*stances surroundin% the !i%uelito;s death. 9e do not su,scri,e, however, to the trial court;s appreciation of treacher which, we note, was discussed onl in the dispositive portion of the decision and which was ,ased solel on the fact that appellant used a firear* in )illin% the victi* !i%uelito 7onato. $he use of a firear* is not sufficient indication of treacher . In the a,sence of an convincin% proof that accused-appellant consciousl and deli,eratel adopted the *eans , which he co**itted the cri*e in order to ensure its e?ecution, the Court *ust resolve the dou,t in favor of accused-appellant. And where treacher is not adeFuatel proved, the accused-appellant can ,e convicted onl of ho*icide. 93EREF4RE, the Court here, !47IFIES the +ud%*ent appealed fro*. $he Court finds accused-appellant Cresenciano !ara*ara %uilt ,e ond reasona,le of ho*icide, defined and penali<ed under Article -10 of the Revised 2enal Code, for the )illin% of !i%uelito 7onato without the attendance of an *odif in% circu*stance. Accordin%l , the Court here, SE"$E"CES accused-appellant Cresenciano !ara*ara to suffer the indeter*inate penalt of ten &/>( ears of prision mayor, as *ini*u*, to seventeen &/A( ears, and four &1( *onths of reclusion temporal, as *a?i*u*, with all its accessor penalties, and to pa the heirs of !i%uelito 7onato in the a*ount of 2/>,>>>.>> as actual da*a%es and 2'>,>>>.>> as death inde*nit .1â p!i1"n#t Costs a%ainst the accused-appellant. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, appellee, vs. EL%IE EJAN$RA . EL%IES EJAN$RA . "E"OT EJAN$RA . ALEJAN$RO EJAN$RA . "E"OT OCA/ SUANGCO, !AG$ALENA CALUNO$ !AGANO/ . !AG$ALENA SALIOT0SUANGCO, ANTONIO HUERA RAN$A, ROEL RE%ILLA CERON, +1) E$2IN TA!POS A!PARO 3A-- )*t+41*) +t 5u*6o1 C4t J+4-, 5u*6o1 C4t 7, appellants.
Art. [email protected]
$his is a review on auto*atic appeal of the 7ecision / of the Bue<on Cit Re%ional $rial Court, #ranch -/0, convictin% appellants Elvie E+andra, !a%dalena Calunod, Edwin $a*pos and Roel Revilla of )idnappin% for ranso*, and sentencin% the* to suffer the death penalt .
$he accused were char%ed of )idnappin% for ranso*. $hat on or a,out Jul -, /00A, in Bue<on Cit , and, the accused, while confederatin%, connivin%, conspirin%, and helpin% each and one another, did then and there with the use of force, threat and inti*idation, ta)e and carr awa , a nine- ear-old *inor child, Ed 3enderson $an, a%ainst the will and consent of the latter nor an of his natural and le%al parents or %uardian, to an un)nown destination, detain, hold and control Ed 3enderson $an deprivin% hi* of his li,ert , and durin% their control and custod of Ed 3enderson $an, call, de*and and ne%otiate the pa *ent of ranso* *one fro* Eddie $an, the father of Ed 3enderson $an, for the safe release and return of the victi* Ed 3enderson, otherwise, the victi* would ,e har*ed or )illed, the victi*Cs father Eddie $an actuall paid the accused the a*ount of 2'1.,>>>.>> as ranso* *one , for the safe release of the victi* to the da*a%e and pre+udice of the victi* Ed 3enderson $an and his father Eddie $an. Edwin $a*pos, Roel Revilla, Elvie E+andra and Antonio 3uera denied an involve*ent in the )idnappin% of Ed 3enderson, and invo)ed ali,i as an additional defense. In the case at ,ar, the overt acts of the appellants were so coordinated to attain a co**on purpose= that of )idnappin% and detainin% Ed 3enderson for ranso*. Appellants E+andra, $a*pos and Revilla a,ducted the victi*. Appellant Revilla drove the *otorc cle fro* the place of a,duction to the house where the victi* was detained. Appellant Calunod %uarded the victi* durin% the latterCs detention, and later ,rou%ht the victi* to E. Rodri%ue< Avenue in Bue<on Cit prior to his release, alon% with appellant $a*pos. Appellant Calunod also collected the ranso* fro* the victi*Cs father. All the fore%oin% facts indu,ita,l show that the appellants conspired to )idnap the victi* for ranso*. Article [email protected]
of the Revised 2enal Code as a*ended , Repu,lic Act "o. [email protected]
'0 reads= AR$. [email protected]
$idnapping and serious illegal detention.RAn private individual who shall )idnap or detain another, or in an other *anner deprive hi* of his li,ert , shall suffer the penalt of reclusion perpetua to death. /. If the )idnappin% or detention shall have lasted *ore than three da s. -. If it shall have co**itted si*ulatin% pu,lic authorit . 8. If an serious ph sical in+uries shall have ,een inflicted upon the person )idnapped or detained, or if threats to )ill hi* shall have ,een *ade. 1. If the person )idnapped or detained shall ,e a *inor, e?cept when the accused is an of the parents, fe*ale or a pu,lic officer. $he penalt shall ,e death where the )idnappin% or detention was co**itted for the purpose of e?tortin% ranso* fro* the victi* or an other person, even if none of the circu*stances a,ove-*entioned were present in the co**ission of the offense. 9hen the victi* is )illed or dies as a conseFuence of the detention or is raped, or is su,+ected to torture dehu*ani<in% acts, the *a?i*u* penalt shall ,e i*posed.
For the accused to ,e convicted of )idnappin% or serious ille%al detention, the prosecution is ,urdened to prove ,e ond reasona,le dou,t all the ele*ents of the cri*e, na*el , &/( the offender is a private individualG &-( he )idnaps or detains another, or in an *anner deprives the latter of h is li,ert G &8( the act of detention or )idnappin% *ust ,e ille%alG and &1( in the co**ission of the offense an of the followin% circu*stances is present= &a( the )idnappin% or detention lasts for *ore than three da sG &,( it is co**itted , si*ulatin% pu,lic authorit G &c( an serious ph sical in+uries are inflicted upon the person )idnapped or detained or threats to )ill hi* are *adeG or &d( the person )idnapped and serious ille%al detention is a *inor, the duration of his detention is i**aterial. 5i)ewise, if the victi* is )idnapped and ille%all detained for the purpose of e?tortin% ranso*, the duration of his detention is i**aterial. $o warrant an i*position of the death penalt for the cri*e of )idnappin% and serious ille%al detention for ranso*, the prosecution *ust prove the followin% ,e ond reasona,le dou,t= &a( intent on the part of the accused to deprive the victi* of his li,ert G &,( actual deprivation of the victi* of his li,ert G and, &c( *otive of the accused, which is ranso* for the victi* or other person for the release of the victi*. $he purpose of the offender in e?tortin% ranso* is a Fualif in% circu*stance which *a ,e proven , his words and overt acts ,efore, durin% and after the )idnappin% and detention of the victi*. "either actual de*and for nor actual pa *ent of ranso* is necessar for the cri*e to ,e co**itted. Ranso* as e*plo ed in the law is so used in its co**on or ordinar senseG *eanin%, a su* of *one or other thin% of value, price, or consideration paid or de*anded for rede*ption of a )idnapped or detained person, a pa *ent that releases fro* captivit . ./ It *a include ,enefits not necessaril pecuniar which *a accrue to the )idnapper as a condition for the victi*Cs release. In this case, the appellants not onl de*anded ,ut also received ranso* for the release of the victi*. $he trial court correctl sentenced the appellants to death. 3owever, the trial court erred in failin% to order the appellants to pa , +ointl and severall , to Ed 3enderson, his parents Eddie and !arileen $an the a*ount of 21.',>>>.>> as actual da*a%es and the a*ount of 2/,>>>,>>>.>> as *oral da*a%es. Under Article //> of the Revised 2enal Code, the principals are +ointl and severall lia,le for the civil lia,ilities arisin% fro* the delict. ONG CHIU 82AN, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS, +1) t9* PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. AR$. -.A FAC$S= 9hat is ,efore the Court for consideration is the decision of the Court of Appeals affir*in% the conviction of accused 4n% Chiu :wan, for un+ust ve?ation. Assistant Cit 2rosecutor Andres !. #a ona of #acolod filed with the !unicipal $rial Court, #acolod Cit an infor*ation char%in% petitioner with un+ust ve?ation for cuttin% the electric wires, water pipes and telephone lines of DCra< Feet,E a ,usiness esta,lish*ent owned and operated , !ildred 4n%. 4n% Chiu :wan ordered 9ilfredo Infante to DrelocateE the telephone, electric and water lines of DCra< Feet,E ,ecause said lines posed as a distur,ance. 3owever, 4n% Chiu :wan failed to present a per*it fro* appropriate authorities allowin% hi* to cut the electric wires, water pipe and telephone lines of the ,usiness esta,lish*ent.
$he !unicipal $rial Court found 4n% Chiu :wan %uilt of un+ust ve?ation, and sentenced hi* to Di*prison*ent for twent da s.E $he court also ordered hi* to pa *oral da*a%es, findin% that the wron%ful act of a,ruptl cuttin% off the electric, water pipe and telephone lines of DCra< FeetE caused the interruption of its ,usiness operations durin% pea) hours, to the detri*ent of its owner, !ildred 4n%. 4n appeal to the Re%ional $rial Court, #acolod Cit , the latter court in a decision dated 7ece*,er ., /00-, si*plisticall adopted the decision of the lower court in toto, without statin% the reasons for doin% so. 4n April --, /008, , petition for review, 4n% Chiu :wan elevated the case to the Court of Appeals. 4n Au%ust /@, /008, the Court of Appeals pro*ul%ated its decision dis*issin% the appeal, a%reein% with the lower courtCs findin% that petitioner was %uilt ,e ond reasona,le dou,t of un+ust ve?ation. 3ence, a petition for review in the Supre*e Court. ISSUE= 9K" accused is %uilt of un+ust ve?ation
3E57= $he Court notes that in the decision of the Re%ional $rial Court which the Court of Appeals affir*ed pere*ptoril without noticin% its nullit , the Re%ional $rial Court *erel Fuoted the decision of the !unicipal $rial Court in full and added two para%raphs, thus= D$his Court, in accordance with the rules, reFuired the parties to su,*it their correspondin% *e*orandu* or ,rief. $he prosecution filed its *e*orandu*, and also with the defense. DAfter a careful perusal of the record of the case and evaluatin% the evidence thereto and e?hi,its thereof, this Court finds no %round to *odif , reverse or alter the a,ove-stated decision and here, affir*s the decision of the lower court in toto.E $he Constitution reFuires that DI"Jo decision shall ,e rendered , an court without e?pressin% therein clearl and distinctl the facts and the law on which it is ,ased.E $he /0.' Rules of Cri*inal 2rocedure, as a*ended, provides that DI$Jhe +ud%*ent *ust ,e written in the official lan%ua%e, personall and directl prepared , the +ud%e and si%ned , hi* and shall contain clearl and distinctl a state*ent of the facts proved or ad*itted , the accused and the law upon which the +ud%*ent is ,ased.E Althou%h a *e*orandu* decision is per*itted under certain conditions, it cannot *erel refer to the findin%s of fact and the conclusions of law of the lower court. $he court *ust *a)e a full findin%s of fact and conclusions of law of its own. ConseFuentl , the decision of the re%ional trial court is a nullit . 6er recentl , spea)in% of a si*ilarl worded decision of a re%ional trial court, we said=
DIIJt is star)l hallow, otiosel written, vacuous in its content and trite in its for*. It achieved nothin% and atte*pted at nothin%, not even at a si*ple su**ation of facts which could easil ,e done. Its inadeFuac spea)s for itself.E Jud%es si*ilarl disposed to pa lip service to their wor) *ust rethin) their place in the +udiciar or seriousl ta)e refresher courses on decision writin%. 9e warn the* of stiff sanctions for such lac)adaisical perfor*ance. ConseFuentl , the case *a ,e re*anded to the lower court for co*pliance with the constitutional reFuire*ent of contents of a decision. 3owever, considerin% that this case has ,een pendin% for so*eti*e, the ends of +ustice will ,e full served if we review the evidence and decide the case. 2etitioner ad*itted havin% ordered the cuttin% of the electric, water and telephone lines of co*plainantCs ,usiness esta,lish*ent ,ecause these lines crossed his propert line. 3e failed, however, to show evidence that he had the necessar per*it or authori<ation to relocate the lines. Also, he ti*ed the interruption of electric, water and telephone services durin% pea) hours of the operation of ,usiness of the co*plainant. $hus, petitionerCs act un+ustl anno ed or ve?ed the co*plainant. ConseFuentl , petitioner 4n% Chiu :wan is lia,le for un+ust ve?ation. Re%ardin% da*a%es, we find the award of *oral and e?e*plar da*a%es and attorne Cs fees to ,e without ,asis. !oral da*a%es *a ,e recovered if the were the pro?i*ate result of defendantCs wron%ful act or o*ission. An award of e?e*plar da*a%es is +ustified if the cri*e was co**itted with one or *ore a%%ravatin% circu*stances. $here is no evidence to support such award. 3ence, we delete the award of *oral da*a%es, e?e*plar da*a%es, and attorne Cs fees. 2HEREFORE, the decisions of the lower courts are RE6ERSE7 and SE$ ASI7E. In lieu thereof, accused 4n% Chiu :wan is here, sentenced to pa a fine of 2->>.>>, and the costs. $he award of *oral and e?e*plar da*a%es and attorne Cs fees is here, deleted. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. AR!AN$O REGALA accused-appellant. ART. 29:327 FACTS# A"RIOL,
Ar*ando Re%ala appeals fro* the +ud%*ent in Cri*inal Case "o. A0-0 rendered , the Re%ional $rial Court of !as,ate, !as,ate, #ranch [email protected]
, 'th Judicial Re%ion, convictin% hi* of the cri*e of Ro,,er with Rape. $hat on or a,out Septe*,er //, /00', in the evenin% thereof, at #aran%a #an%on, !unicipalit of Aroro , 2rovince of !as,ate, 2hilippines, the said accused confederatin% to%ether and helpin% one another, with intent to %ain, violence and inti*idation upon persons, did then and there wilfull , unlawfull and feloniousl enter the )itchen of the house of Consuelo Arevalo and when inside, ho%tied said Consuelo Arevalo and %randdau%hter "erissa Re%ala &sic(, ta)e, steal, ro, and carr awa cash a*ount of 28,>>>.>> and two &-( %old rin%s worth [email protected]
,>>>.>>, to the da*a%e and pre+udice of owner Consuelo Arevalo in the total a*ount of 20,>>>.>>, 2hilippine Currenc G and in pursuance of
the co**ission of the cri*e of ro,,er a%ainst the will and consent of the %randdau%hter "erissa Re%ala &sic( wilfull , unlawfull and feloniousl accused Ar*ando Re%ala A,riol has for two ti*es se?uall a,used andKor intercoursed with her, while ho%tied on the ,ed and in the )itchen. Accused-appellant was apprehended , the police four da s after the incident. 3e was identified at a police line-up , "erissa and her %rand*other. $he defense presented accused-appellant who testified that on Septe*,er //, /00', he was sta in% in the house of Antonio Ra*ilo at ,aran%a S ndicate, Aroro , !as,ate. Ra*ilo was the *ana%er in the %old pannin% ,usiness where accused-appellant was e*plo ed. Antonio Ra*ilo testified and corro,orated his defense and stated that accused-appellant was in his house, which is a,out ' )ilo*eters awa fro* #aran%a #an%on. $he trial court held that the defense of ali,i cannot overco*e the positive identification of the accused. $he Court found accused Ar*ando Re%ala A,riol %uilt ,e ond reasona,le dou,t of the cri*e of Ro,,er with Rape. ISSUE= 9K" the accused is %uilt of Ro,,er with Rape.
3E57= 9e are not persuaded , the contention of accused-appellant that the contradictor replies of Consuelo Arevalo when as)ed whether Re%ala re*oved his *as) P,eforeP or PafterP she and "erissa were ho%tied e?posed the fact that she was not a,le to identif the accusedappellant. $he contradiction referred to a *inor detail and cannot detract fro* the fact that ,oth "erissa and Consuelo positivel identified Re%ala as there was a flashli%ht used to focus at the *one while it was ,ein% counted and there was a reflection on the face of Re%ala. #oth "erissa and Consuelo re*e*,ered the earrin% on his left ear, which he was still wearin% at the ti*e of the police line-up inside the police station. !isoedp $he cri*e of ro,,er with rape was co**itted in /00' when RA [email protected]
'0 was alread in force. Article -01 of the Revised 2enal Code as a*ended now provides, under para%raph / thereof= Edp*is P/. $he penalt of reclusion perpetua to death, when for an reason of or on occasion of the ro,,er , the cri*e of 9o;4,4)* shall have ,een co**itted, or when the ro,,er shall have ,een acco*panied , '+<* or intentional *utilation or arson.P $he victi* in the case at ,ar was raped twice on the occasion of the ro,,er . $here are cases holdin% that the additional rapes co**itted on the sa*e occasion of ro,,er will not increase the penalt . In 2eople vs. !artine<, accused !artine< and two &-( other unidentified persons, who re*ained at lar%e, were char%ed with the special co*ple? cri*e of ro,,er with rape where all three raped the victi*. $he Court i*posed the penalt of death after considerin% two &-( a%%ravatin% circu*stances, na*el , nocturnidad and use of a deadl weapon. 3owever, the Court did not consider the two &-( other rapes as a%%ravatin% holdin% that P&$(he special co*ple? cri*e of ro,,er with rape has, therefore, ,een co**itted ,
the felonious acts of appellant and his cohorts, with all acts or rape on that occasion ,ein% inte%rated in one co*posite cri*e. In view of the fore%oin%, the additional rape co**itted , herein accused-appellant should not ,e considered as a%%ravatin%. $he penalt of reclusion perpetua i*posed , the trial court is proper. Supre*e Jud%*ent convictin% Ar*ando Re%ala A,riol %uilt ,e ond reasona,le dou,t of the cri*e of Ro,,er with Rape, is here, AFFIR!E7.
ANICIA RA!OS0AN$AN, 2etitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondent. AR$. 8/' FAC$S= Instant petition for review on certiorari see)in% to reverse the 7ecision / and the Resolution of the Court of Appeals entitled P People of t!e P!ilippines% plaintiff&appellee% 'ersus Anicia Ramos&Andan and Potenciana (ieto% accused% Anicia Ramos Andan% accused&appellant" P 4n Fe,ruar 1, /00/, Anicia Ra*os-Andan, herein petitioner, and 2otenciana "ieto approached Eli<a,eth E. Calderon and offered to ,u the latterCs /.-carat heart-shaped dia*ond rin%. Eli<a,eth a%reed to sell her rin%. In turn, 2otenciana tendered her three &8( postdated chec)s. Inas*uch as the three chec)s &27# Chec) "os. /1/A8/.., /1/A8/.0, and /1/A8/0>( were all pa a,le to cash, Eli<a,eth reFuired petitioner to endorse the*. $he latter co*plied. 9hen Eli<a,eth deposited the chec)s upon *aturit with the drawee ,an), the ,ounced for the reason PAccount Closed.P She then sent 2otenciana a de*and letter to pa , ,ut she refused. 4n Jul />, /00A, Eli<a,eth filed with the 4ffice of the 2rovincial 2rosecutor of #ulacan a Co*plaint for Estafa a%ainst petitioner and 2otenciana. Findin% a pro,a,le cause for Estafa a%ainst the*, the 2rovincial 2rosecutor filed the correspondin% Infor*ation for Estafa with the Re%ional $rial Court &R$C(, #ranch ., !alolos, #ulacan. Su,seFuentl , petitioner was arrested ,ut 2otenciana has re*ained at lar%e. 9hen arrai%ned, petitioner entered a plea of not %uilt to the char%e. 7urin% the hearin%, petitioner denied ,u in% a dia*ond rin% fro* Eli<a,eth, *aintainin% that she si%ned the receipt and the chec)s *erel as a witness to the transaction ,etween Eli<a,eth and 2otenciana. $hus, she could not ,e held lia,le for the ,ounced chec)s she did not issue. After hearin%, the trial court rendered its 7ecision findin% petitioner %uilt as char%ed and i*posin% upon her an indeter*inate prison ter* of si? &@( ears and one &/( da of prision mayor, as *ini*u*, to fourteen &/1( ears, ei%ht &.( *onths and one &/( da of reclusion temporal, as *a?i*u*, and to inde*nif Eli<a,eth E. Calderon in the a*ount of 2A8,>>>.>> representin% the purchase price of the dia*ond rin%.
$he trial court held that while it was 2otenciana who issued the chec)s, nonetheless, it was petitioner who induced Eli<a,eth to accept the* and who endorsed the sa*e. Accordin%l , petitioner cannot escape lia,ilit . 4n appeal, the Court of Appeals rendered its 7ecision affir*in% with *odification the R$C 7ecision. $he *a?i*u* penalt i*posed was increased to seventeen &/A( ears, four &1( *onths and one &/( da of reclusion temporal and the inde*nit was reduced to 2-8,>>>.>> considerin% the R$CCs findin% that= Co*plainant, however, was a,le to present in Court onl 2lanters 7evelop*ent #an) &Chec)( "o. /1/A8/.., dated June 8>, /00/, in the a*ount of 2-8,>>>.>> and the fact of its ,ein% dishonored. $he other two chec)s were neither presented nor the fact of ,ein% dishonored proven. 5i)ewise, the two chec)s were not *entioned in the de*and letter *ar)ed as E?hi,it SC.C Althou%h, therefore, it is clear fro* the records, in fact ad*itted , the accused, that the total a*ount of 2-8,>>>.>> as purchase price of the dia*ond rin% has not ,een paid, the accused should onl ,e held lia,le for the dishonor of the chec) a,ovestated as the dishonor of the two other chec)s was not proven in Court. 2etitioner filed a *otion for reconsideration, ,ut this was denied , the Appellate Court. 3ence a petition to the Supre*e Court. ISSUE= 9hether or not the accused is %uilt under Art.8/' 3E57= $he ele*ents of the offense as defined and penali<ed , Article 8/', para%raph -&d( of the Revised 2enal Code, as a*ended, are= &/( postdatin% or issuance of a chec) in pa *ent of an o,li%ation contracted at the ti*e the chec) was issuedG &-( lac) of or insufficienc of funds to cover the chec)G and &8( the pa ee was not infor*ed , the offender and the pa ee did not )now that the offender had no funds or insufficient funds. All these ele*ents are present in this case. $he prosecution proved that the chec)s were issued in pa *ent of a si*ultaneous o,li%ation, i.e., the chec)s were issued in pa *ent for the rin%. $he chec)s ,ounced when Eli<a,eth deposited the* for the reason PAccount Closed.P $here is no showin% whatsoever that ,efore petitioner handed and endorsed the chec)s to Eli<a,eth, she too) steps to ascertain that 2otenciana has sufficient funds in her account. Upon ,ein% infor*ed that the chec)s ,ounced, she failed to %ive an adeFuate e?planation wh 2otencianaCs account was closed. In Ec!aus '" Court of Appeals , we ruled that Pthe fact that the postdated chec)sTwere not covered , sufficient funds, when the fell due, in the a,sence of an e?planation or +ustification , petitioner, satisfied the ele*ent of deceit in the cri*e of estafa, as defined in para%raph - of Article 8/' of the Revised 2enal Code.P 2E425E vs. !A"A"SA5A , -A8 SCRA '>- &/00A( AR$. 88A
Facts= $his is an appeal fro* the decision of R$C-!anila findin% 7ante !anansala %uilt of rape a%ainst his /1- ear old dau%hter, Jennifer !anansala. 4n direct e?a*ination, she said that she was raped , her father on . occasions fro* the period "ov /, /00/ up to "ov /8, /00/ in a taho factor where he was livin%. 3eld= Reversed on the %round of reasona,le dou,t. Ratio= Incestuous rape is ad*ittedl one of the heinous cri*es. 3owever, the constitutional presu*ption of innocence is sedulousl o,served. For this purpose, the Court has for*ulated a set of principles= &/( An accusation for rape is eas to *a)e, difficult to prove and even *ore difficult to disproveG &-( In view of the intrinsic nature of the cri*e, where onl persons are usuall involved, the testi*on of the co*plainant *ust ,e scrutini<ed with e?tre*e cautionG &8( $he evidence for the prosecution *ust stand or fall on its own *erits and cannot draw stren%th fro* the wea)ness of the evidence for the defense. $he declarations *ade , the principal witness for the defense, private co*plainant Jennifer !anansala, is contradictor to her *other;s testi*on &$eresita who was presented as a witness for the prosecution( in that the latter said Jennifer was with her father in $arlac fro* "ov / to /8. Jennnifer was undulatin% and waverin% on her state*ents when upon crosse?a*ination she said that she was raped in !anila , her father on "ov /, ,ut was a%ain raped several ti*es in $arlac fro* "ov - to /8. She e?plained that the reason wh she clai*ed that she had ,een raped in !anila was ,ecause she was afraid that her co*plaints will ,e dis*issed for i*proper venue. 5ater she testified that she was raped in "ov / and in !anila, and then raped in $arlac on "ov 8 to .. $he prosecution;s evidence is not onl shot throu%h with inconsistencies and contradictions, it is also i*pro,a,le. If co*plainant had ,een raped on "ov /, /00/, wh did she %o with her father to $arlac on "ov - and sta ed there with hi* until "ov /1U She was supposed to have %one throu%h a harrowin% e?perience at the hands of her father ,ut the followin% da and for /8 *ore da s after that she sta ed with hi*. It is true that the *edico-le%al e?a*ination conducted on "ov /A showed that shw was no lon%er a vir%in and that she had recent se?ual intercourse. #ut the fact that she had voluntaril %one with her father to $arlac su%%ests that the cri*e was not rape, ,ut Fuite possi,l Fualified seduction, considerin% the a%e of co*plainant &/1 at that ti*e of the cri*e(. $his is e?peciall true ,ecause she said that she had ,een %iven *one , her father ever ti*e the had an intercourse. $he fact that she could descri,e the lurid details of the se?ual act shows that it was not an ordeal that she went throu%h ,ut a consensual act. 4ne su,+ected to se?ual torture can hardl ,e e?pected to see what was ,ein% done to her. 9hat is clear fro* co*plainant;s testi*on is that althou%h accused had had se?ual intercourse with her, it was not done , force or inti*idation. E$UAR$O P. $IEGO, vs. JU$GE SIL%ERIO 5. CASTILLO, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, $AGUPAN CIT/, "RANCH :3, AR$. 810
FAC$S= $his is an ad*inistrative co*plaint a%ainst Re%ional $rial Court Jud%e Silverio B. Castillo for alle%edl )nowin%l renderin% an un+ust +ud%*ent in a cri*inal case andKor renderin% +ud%*ent in %ross i%norance of the law. 4n Januar 0, /[email protected]
', accused 5ucena Escoto contracted *arria%e with Jor%e de 2erio, Jr., sole*ni<ed ,efore then !a or 5i,erato Re na of 7a%upan Cit . $he couple were ,oth Filipinos. In the *arria%e contract, the accused used and adopted the na*e Crescencia Escoto, with a civil status of sin%leG In a docu*ent dated Fe,ruar /', /0A., deno*inated as a P7ecree of 7ivorceP and purportedl issued to Jor%e de 2erio as petitioner , the Fa*il 7istrict Court of 3arris Count , $e?as &-1Ath Judicial 7istrict(, it was Pordered, ad+ud%ed and decreed, that the ,onds of *atri*on heretofore e?istin% ,etween Jor%e de 2erio and Crescencia de 2erio are here, 7issolved, Cancelled and Annulled and the 2etitioner is here, %ranted a 7ivorce.P Su,seFuentl , on June 1, /0.A, the sa*e Crescencia Escoto contracted *arria%e with herein co*plainantCs ,rother, !anuel 2. 7ie%o, sole*ni<ed ,efore the Rev. Fr. Cle*ente $. Godo , parish priest of 7a%upan Cit . $he *arria%e contract shows that this ti*e, the accused used and adopted the na*e 5ucena Escoto, a%ain, with a civil status of sin%le. $he decision states that the *ain ,asis for the acFuittal was %ood faith on the part of the accused. Respondent Jud%e %ave credence to the defense of the accused that she acted without an *alicious intent. $he co*,ined testi*onial and docu*entar evidence of the defense was ai*ed at convincin% the court that accused 5ucena Escoto had sufficient %rounds to ,elieve that her previous *arria%e to Jor%e de 2erio had ,een validl dissolved , the divorce decree and that she was le%all free to contract the second *arria%e with !anuel 2. 7ie%o. Co*plainant herein alle%es that the decision rendered , the respondent Jud%e is *anifestl a%ainst the law and contrar to the evidence. 3e Fuestions the evidentiar wei%ht and ad*issi,ilit of the divorce decree as a ,asis for the findin% of %ood faith. In addition, co*plainant stresses that the evidence on record ne%ates respondent Jud%eCs findin% of %ood faith on the part of the accused. $hus, co*plainant ur%es this Court to i*pose sanctions upon respondent Jud%e as, accordin% to co*plainant, these acts a*ount to )nowin%l renderin% an un+ust +ud%*ent andKor %ross i%norance of the law. In his co**ent, respondent Jud%e e?plains that what was in issue was the cri*inal culpa,ilit of the accused under Article 810 of the Revised 2enal Code. Respondent Jud%e does not dispute that the second *arria%e was ,i%a*ous ,ecause at the ti*e it was contracted, the first *arria%e was still su,sistin% since divorce is not reco%ni<ed in our countr and ,ecause the accusedCs first hus,and was still alive. Respondent Jud%e, however, *aintains that what was controllin% was whether , virtue of the divorce decree the accused honestl ,elieved, al,eit *ista)enl , that her first *arria%e had ,een severed and she could *arr a%ain. Accordin% to respondent Jud%e, the sa*e is a state of *ind personal to the accused. 3e further stressed that )nowled%e of the law should not ,e e?acted strictl fro* the accused since she is a la person, and that ineptitude should not ,e confused with cri*inal intent. ISSUE=
9hether or not respondent Jud%e should ,e held ad*inistrativel lia,le for )nowin%l renderin% an un+ust +ud%*ent andKor %ross i%norance of the law. 3E57= Re%ional $rial Court Jud%e Silverio B. Castillo is here, FI"E7 in the a*ount of $en $housand 2esos &2/>,>>>( with a S$ER" 9AR"I"G that a repetition of the sa*e or si*ilar acts will ,e dealt with *ore severel . Appl in% the rule as then prevailin%, and in line with applica,le +urisprudence, the sanction on respondent Jud%e should ,e a fine in the a*ount of 2/>,>>>. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. GLENN $E LOS SANTOS, accused-appellant. [email protected]
' FAC$S= $hat on or a,out 4cto,er >', /00', in the earl *ornin%, at !aitu* 3i%hwa , within #aran%a 2uerto, Ca%a an de 4ro Cit , 2hilippines, and within the +urisdiction of this 3onora,le Court, the a,ove-na*ed accused, with deli,erate intent to )ill, ta)in% advanta%e of his driven *otor vehicle, an Isu<u Elf, and with treacher , did then and there willfull , unlawfull and feloniousl )ill and inflict *ortal wounds fro* T ,ehind in a sudden and une?pected *anner with the use of said vehicle T *e*,ers of the 2hilippine "ational 2olice &2"2(, under%oin% a Special $rainin% Course &Scout Class >A-0'(, wearin% ,lac) $-shirts and ,lac) short pants, perfor*in% an PEndurance RunP of 8' )ilo*eters co*in% fro* their ca*p in !anolo Fortich, #u)idnon, headin% to Re%ional $rainin% 3eadFuarters in Ca*p Ala%ar, Ca%a an de 4ro Cit , runnin% in a colu*n of 8, with a distance of two feet, *ore or less, fro* one trainee to another, thus for*in% a IsicJ three lines, with a len%th of *ore or less '> *eters fro* the /st *an to the last *an, una,le to defend the*selves, ,ecause the accused ran or *oved his driven vehicle on the direction of the ,ac)s of the 2"2 +o%%ers in spite of the continuous warnin% si%nals *ade , si? of the +o%%ers, na*el = 24/ Allan $a,acon Espana, 9aldon Sinda Sacro, 5e*uel M,ane< 2an%ca, Arte*io Ja*il 6illaflor, "ardo 4*asas Collantes and Joselito #u ser Escartin, who were at the rear echelon of said run, actin% as %uards, , continuousl wavin% their hands at the accused for hi* to ta)e the left lane of the hi%hwa , %oin% to the Cit proper, fro* a distance of />> *eters awa fro* the +o%%erCs rear portion, ,ut which accused failed and refused to heedG instead, he proceeded to operate his driven vehicle &an Isu<u Elf( on hi%h speed directl towards the +o%%ers, thus forcin% the rear hittin%, ,u*pin%, or ra**in% the first four &1( victi*s, causin% the ,odies to ,e thrown towards the windshields of said Isu<u Elf, ,rea)in% said windshield, and upon ,ein% aware that ,odies of the victi*s flew on the windshield of his driven vehicle, instead of appl in% his ,ra)e, continued to travel on a hi%h speed, this ti*e puttin% off its headli%hts, thus hittin% the victi*s. ISSUE# 9K" Glenn violated art 8'.. HEL$#
G5E"" showed an ine?cusa,le lac) of precaution. Article [email protected]
' of the Revised 2enal Code states that rec)less i*prudence consists in voluntaril , ,ut without *alice, doin% or failin% to do an act fro* which *aterial da*a%e results , reason of ine?cusa,le lac) of precaution on the part of the person perfor*in% or failin% to perfor* such act, ta)in% into consideration &/( his e*plo *ent or occupationG &-( his de%ree of intelli%enceG &1( his ph sical conditionG and &8( other circu*stances re%ardin% persons, ti*e and place. In the case at ,ar, it has ,een alle%ed in the infor*ation and proved durin% the trial that G5E"" Pescaped fro* the scene of the incident, leavin% ,ehind the victi*s.P It ,ein% cr stal clear that G5E"" failed to render aid to the victi*s, the penalt provided for under Article [email protected]
' shall ,e raised , one de%ree. 3ence, for rec)less i*prudence resultin% in *ultiple ho*icide with serious ph sical in+uries and less serious ph sical in+uries, the penalt would ,e prision correccional in its *a?i*u* period to prision mayor in its *ediu* period. Appl in% Article 1., the *a?i*u* of said penalt , which is prision mayor in its *ediu* period, should ,e i*posed. For the separate offenses of rec)less i*prudence resultin% in sli%ht ph sical in+uries, G5E"" *a ,e sentenced to suffer, for each count, the penalt of arresto mayor in its *ini*u* period. Althou%h it was esta,lished throu%h the testi*onies of prosecution witness 5e*uel 2an%ca and of G5E"" that the latter surrendered to Governor E*ano of !isa*is 4riental, such *iti%atin% circu*stance need not ,e considered pursuant to the aforestated fifth para%raph of Article [email protected]
'. Under the Indeter*inate Sentence 5aw, G5E"" *a ,e sentenced to suffer an indeter*inate penalt whose *ini*u* is within the ran%e of the penalt ne?t lower in de%ree to that prescri,ed for the offense, and whose *a?i*u* is that which could properl ,e i*posed ta)in% into account the *odif in% circu*stances. 3ence, for the co*ple? cri*e of rec)less i*prudence resultin% in *ultiple ho*icide with serious ph sical in+uries and less serious ph sical in+uries, Fualified , his failure to render assistance to the victi*s, he *a ,e sentenced to suffer an indeter*inate penalt ran%in% fro* arresto mayor in its *a?i*u* period to prision correccional in its *ediu* period, as *ini*u*, to prision mayor in its *ediu* period, as *a?i*u*. As to the cri*es of rec)less i*prudence resultin% in sli%ht ph sical in+uries, since the *a?i*u* ter* for each count is onl two *onths the Indeter*inate Sentence 5aw will not appl . 2HEREFORE, the decision of the Re%ional $rial Court, #ranch 8., Ca%a an de 4ro Cit , is here, SET ASI$E, and another one is rendered holdin% herein accused-appellant G5E"" 7E 54S SA"$4S %uilt ,e ond reasona,le dou,t of &/( the co*ple? cri*e of rec)less i*prudence resultin% in *ultiple ho*icide with serious ph sical in+uries and less serious ph sical in+uries ELPI$IO "ON$A$, JR., / "URAC, appellant, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, appellee. RA 0/@' 7an%erous dru%s act of ->>FACTS# $hat on or a,out the -0th da of Januar ->>1, in the Cit of !ari)ina, 2hilippines and within the +urisdiction of this 3onora,le Court, the a,ove-na*ed accused, without ,ein% authori<ed , law, did then and there willfull , unlawfull , feloniousl and )nowin%l sell to poseur ,u er >.>- %ra* of !etha*pheta*ine 3 drochloride &sha,u( contained in one &/( heatsealed transparent plastic sachet, a dan%erous dru%.
7en in% the char%es a%ainst hi*, appellant, a for*er police officer, clai*ed that he was fra*ed up and %ave the followin% version= 4n Januar -0, ->>1, while he was pla in% inside 8 CCs ,illiard hall, 24- #ru,io, who* he )new was a police*an, entered the ,illiard hall. After %reetin% 24- #ru,io in Bicolano, he continued pla in% ,ut 24- #ru,io suddenl handcuffed hi* and as)ed hi* P Sumama )a muna.P Another person who was at his ,ac) pushed hi* out of the ,illiard hall in the course of which he felt 24- #ru,io reachin% his &appellantCs( ri%ht front poc)et, drawin% hi* to restrain the hand of 24- #ru,io, tellin% hi* Ppera )o yanVP Aware that his son was inside the ,illiard hall, appellant su**oned and handed hi* his wallet containin% 2-,>>>. 24- #ru,io, however, too) the wallet fro* his son, tellin% hi* P*u ag )a ma)ialam dito.P 3e was then *ade to ,oard a car and ta)en to the 4ffice of the SAI7S4$F at the police station. AppellantCs defense was corro,orated , his son Christian Jeffre C. #ondad, and Ro,erto U. !ata who was a PspotterP &referee( at the ,illiard hall at the ti*e appellant was arrested. ISSUE# 9K" accussed appellant is 5ia,le under RA 0/@' HEL$# Appellant clai*s that there was failure to follow the reFuire*ents of Sec. -/ of R.A. "o. 0/@', hence, it co*pro*ised the inte%rit and evidentiar value of the alle%edl sei<ed ite*s. Sec. -/ of R.A. "o 0/@' provides= S*,t4o1 21. Custody and +isposition of Confiscated% Sei,ed% and-or Surrendered +angerous +rugs% Plant Sources of +angerous +rugs% Controlled Precursors and Essential C!emicals% Instruments-Parap!ernalia and-or .aboratory E/uipment . O $he 27EA shall ta)e char%e and have custod of all dan%erous dru%s, plant sources or dan%erous dru%s, controlled precursors and essential che*icals, as well as instru*entsKparaphernalia andKor la,orator eFuip*ent so confiscated, sei<ed and or surrendered, for proper disposition in the followin% *anner= &/( $he apprehendin% tea* havin% initial custod and control of the dru%s s9+--, 4;;*)4+t*- +=t*' s*46u'* +1) ,o1=4s,+t4o1, <9 s4,+-41&*1to' +1) <9otog'+<9 t9* s+;* in t!e presence of the accused or the personsKs fro* who* such ite*s were confiscated andKor sei<ed, or hisKher representative or counsel, a representative fro* the *edia and the 7epart*ent of Justice &74J(, and an elected pu,lic official >9o s9+-- ?* '*@u4'*) to s4g1 t9* ,o<4*s o= t9* 41&*1to' +1) ?* g4&*1 + ,o< t9*'*o=G ? ? ? &E*phasis and underscorin% supplied( Appellant clai*s that no ph sical inventor and photo%raphin% of the dru%s too) place. A readin% of the testi*on of the poseur-,u er People '" Pringas holds, however=
"on-co*pliance , the apprehendin%K,u -,ust tea* with Section -/ is not fatal as lon% as there is Aust4=4+?-* g'ou1) therefor, and +s -o1g +s t9* 41t*g'4t +1) t9* *&4)*1t4+' &+-u* o= t9* ,o1=4s,+t*)Bs*46*) 4t*;s, +'* <'o<*'<'*s*'&*) ? t9* +<<'*9*1)41g o==4,*'Bt*+; . Its non-co*pliance will not render an accused;s arrest ille%al or the ite*s sei<edKconfiscated fro* hi* inad*issi,le. 9hat is of ut*ost i*portance is the <'*s*'&+t4o1 o= t9* 41t*g'4t +1) t9* *&4)*1t4+' &+-u* o= t9* s*46*) 4t*;s, as the sa*e would ,e utili<ed in the deter*ination of the %uilt or innocence of the accused./A &Citation o*itted, e*phasis, italics and underscorin% supplied( $he CourtCs pronounce*ent in Pringas is ,ased on the provision of Section -/&a( of the I*ple*entin% Rules and Re%ulations of R.A. "o. 0/@', vi<= ? ? ? 2rovided, further, that non-co*pliance with these reFuire*ents under Aust4=4+?-* g'ou1)s, as lon% as the 41t*g'4t +1) *&4)*1t4+' &+-u* o= t9* s*46*) 4t*;s +'* <'o<*'- <'*s*'&*) , the apprehendin% officerKtea*, s9+-- 1ot '*1)*' &o4) +1) 41&+-4) su,9 s*46u'*s o= +1) ,usto) o&*' s+4) 4t*;s G &E*phasis and underscorin% supplied( In the present case, , 24- 7anoCs clai*, he i**ediatel *ar)ed the sei<ed ite*s which were ,rou%ht to the Cri*e 5a,orator for e?a*ination. # his ad*ission, however, he did not conduct an inventor of the ite*s sei<ed. 9orse, no photo%raph of the ite*s was ta)en. $here was thus failure to faithfull follow the reFuire*ents of the law. 2arentheticall , unli)e in Pringas, the defense in the present case Fuestioned earl on, durin% the cross e?a*ination of 24- 7ano, the failure of the apprehendin% officers to co*pl with the inventor and photo%raphin% reFuire*ents of Section -/ of R.A. "o. 0/@', despite 24- 7anoCs awareness of such reFuire*ents. And the defense raised it a%ain durin% the offer of evidence , the prosecution, thus= Att . 2uente,ella= ???? E?hi,its P#P which is the ,rown envelope, P#-/P, P#--P and P#-8P are o,+ected to for ,ein% product of irre%ular functions of police and therefore fruit of poisonous thin)in% IsicJ and the are not ad*issi,le and t9* >*'* 1ot <9otog'+<9*) 41 t9* <'*s*1,* o= t9* +,,us*) +s <'o&4)*) =o' ? S*,. 21, <+'.1, R.A. 9165 G &e*phasis supplied( I" FI"E, as the failure to co*pl with the aforesaid reFuire*ents of the law co*pro*ised the identit of the ite*s sei<ed, which is the corpus delicti of each of the cri*es char%ed a%ainst appellant, his acFuittal is in order. $his leaves it unnecessar to still dwell on the first and third assi%n*ents of error. 2HEREFORE, the 2etition is GRANTE$. $he assailed decision is RE%ERSE$ +1) SET ASI$E and appellant, Elpidio #ondad Jr., #urac, is AC5UITE$ of the cri*es char%ed. 2E425E 4F $3E 23I5I22I"ES, plaintiff&appellee% 's.
R4""IE AG4!4-4, accused, E$$/ PANECA +1) OSCAR SER%AN$O, accused-appellants. 27. '8FAC$S= $his is an appeal fro* a decision of the Re%ional $rial Court, #ranch -8, Iloilo Cit , findin% accused-appellants Edd 2ane<a and 4scar Servando, to%ether with accused Ronnie A%o*oo, %uilt of hi%hwa ro,,er under 2.7. "o. '8-. $hat on or a,out the --nd da of Septe*,er, /008, alon% the national hi%hwa , in the !unicipalit of San EnriFue, 2rovince of Iloilo, 2hilippines, the a,ove-na*ed accused, conspirin% confederatin% and *utuall helpin% one another, ar*ed with a pistoli<ed ho*e*ade shot%un and ,laded weapons announced a hold-up when the passen%er +eepne driven , Rodito 5asap reached #aran%a !apili, San EnriFue, Iloilo, and , *eans of violence a%ainst or inti*idation, did then and there willfull , unlawfull and feloniousl , with intent to %ain, ta)e steal and carr awa cash *one , in the a*ount of FIF$M 2ES4S &2'>.>>(, 2hilippine Currenc and a wrist watch with a value of $3REE $34USA"7 2ES4S &28,>>>.>>( ,oth ,elon%in% to J4SE A!A74R, another a*ount of 4"E 3U"7RE7 $3IR$M 2ES4S &2/8>.>>( ,elon%in% to FRE77IE AGRA#I4, and the a*ount of $94 3U"7RE7 2ES4S &2->>.>>( ,elon%in% to the driver, R47I$4 5ASA2, with a total value of $3REE $34USA"7 $3REE 3U"7RE7 EIG3$M 2ES4S &28,8.>.>>(, 2hilippine Currenc , to the da*a%e and pre+udice of the aforesaid persons and on the occasion of said ro,,er , the accused, with intent to )ill shot the driver R47I$4 5ASA2, with the firear*s the were provided at that ti*e which resulted IinJ the death of Rodito 5asap and with deli,erate intent to )ill li)ewise sta, one FRE77IE AGRA#I4 with a ,laded weapon the were provided thus hittin% hi* on the left el,ow, thus co**encin% the co**ission of ho*icide directl , overt acts ,ut did not perfor* all the acts of e?ecution which would produce the felon , reason of so*e cause or accident other than their own spontaneous desistance. ISSUE= 9K" accused is lia,le under 27'83E57= It is settled that so lon% as the witnessesC testi*onies a%ree on su,stantial *atters, the inconseFuential inconsistencies and contradictions dilute neither the witnessesC credi,ilit nor the verit of their testi*onies. As this Court has held= In su*, the inconsistencies referred to , the defense are inconseFuential. $he points that *attered *ost in the e ewitnessesC testi*onies were their presence at the locus criminis% their identification of the accused-appellant as the perpetrator of the cri*e and their credi,le and corro,orated narration of accused-appellantCs *anner of shootin% Crisanto Suare<. $o reiterate, inconsistencies in the testi*onies of witnesses that refer to insi%nificant details do not destro their credi,ilit . Such *inor inconsistencies even *anifest truthfulness and candor erasin% an suspicion of a rehearsed testi*on . In contrast to the clear and positive identification of Freddie A%ra,io and Jose A*ador, accused-appellants %ave nothin% ,ut ali,i and denial. $he %ave onl self-servin% testi*onies, corro,orated onl , the testi*onies of their relatives. As we have held, DIaJli,i
,eco*es less plausi,le when it is corro,orated , relatives and friends who *a then not ,e i*partial witnesses.E Ali,i is an inherentl wea) defense and *ust ,e re+ected when the accusedCs identit is satisfactoril and cate%oricall esta,lished , the e ewitnesses to the offense, especiall when such e ewitnesses have no ill *otive to testif falsel . In the case at ,ar, the defense failed to show that Freddie A%ra,io and Jose A*ador were *otivated , ill will. Further*ore, accused-appellantsC defense of ali,i and denial cannot ,e ,elieved as the the*selves ad*itted their pro?i*it to the scene of the cri*e when the offense occurred. Edd 2ane<a testified that, at the ti*e of the incident, he was in #aran%a !adara%, a town within the *unicipalit of San EnriFue where the ro,,er too) place. 4n the other hand, !a. Elena Servando testified that 4scar Servando went with her to %ather corn in Sitio #acla an which is also in the *unicipalit of San EnriFue. For the defense of ali,i to prosper, the followin% *ust ,e esta,lished= &a( the presence of the accused-appellant in another place at the ti*e of the co**ission of the offenseG and, &,( ph sical i*possi,ilit for hi* to ,e at the scene of the cri*e. $hese reFuisites were not fulfilled in this case. Considerin% that accused-appellants the*selves ad*itted that the were in the sa*e *unicipalit as the place where the offense occurred, it cannot ,e said that it was ph sicall i*possi,le for the* to have co**itted the cri*e. 4n the contrar , the were in the i**ediate vicinit of the area where the ro,,er too) place. $hus, their defense of ali,i cannot prosper. S*,o1). Accused-appellants contend that there can ,e no findin% of conspirac a%ainst the* ,ecause the prosecution failed to esta,lish their participation in the )illin% of Rodito 5asap. $his ar%u*ent is without *erit. Conspirac e?ists when two or *ore persons co*e to an a%ree*ent concernin% the co**ission of a felon and decide to co**it it. It *a ,e inferred fro* the acts of the accused indicatin% a co**on purpose, a concert of action, or co**unit of interest. $hat there was conspirac in the case at ,ar is supported , the evidence on record. Freddie A%ra,io testified that after shootin% the driver, the accused ordered the passen%ers to %ive their *one and valua,les. Althou%h Freddie A%ra,io could not specif who a*on% the three divested hi* of his wallet ,ecause he was l in% face down on the floor of the +eepne , it is clear that accused-appellants too) part in the ro,,er . Accused-appellant 2ane<a did not onl ta)e valua,les fro* the passen%ers ,ut also sta,,ed Freddie A%ra,io, hittin% the latter on the left el,ow. Jose A*ador identified ,oth accusedappellants Edd 2ane<a as the one who too) his wrist watch and wallet while si*ultaneousl pointin% a DpinoteE at hi*, and Servando as the one who fris)ed his waist as he was ali%htin% fro* the +eepne . Clearl , therefore, accused-appellants cooperated with one another in order to achieve their purpose of ro,,in% the driver and his passen%ers. DIFJor collective responsi,ilit to ,e esta,lished, it is not necessar that conspirac ,e proved , direct evidence of a prior a%ree*ent to co**it a cri*e. It is sufficient that at the ti*e of the co**ission of the offense, all the accused acted in concert showin% that the had the sa*e purpose or co**on desi%n or that the were united in its e?ecution.E 9hile onl Ronnie A%o*o-o shot and )illed Rodito 5asap, accused-appellants cannot ,e e?onerated. 9hen conspirac is esta,lished, all who carried out the plan and who personall too) part in its e?ecution are eFuall lia,le. Accused-appellants *ust ,oth also ,e held responsi,le for the death of Rodito 5asap. T94'). Accused-appellants further assert that the cannot ,e convicted of hi%hwa ro,,er as the cri*e was not co**itted , at least four persons, as reFuired in Article 8>@ of the
Revised 2enal Code. 3owever, hi%hwa ro,,er is now %overned , 2.7. "o. '8-, otherwise )nown as the Anti-2irac and Anti-3i%hwa Ro,,er 5aw of /0A1. $his law provides= Sec. -. &e(. *ig! ay Robbery-Brigandage.W $he sei<ure of an person for ranso*, e?tortion or other unlawful purposes, or the ta)in% awa of the propert of another , *eans of violence a%ainst or inti*idation of person or force upon thin%s or other unlawful *eans, co**itted , an person on an 2hilippine 3i%hwa . In the case of People '" Puno, it was held that 2.7. "o. '8- a*ended Art. 8>@ of the Revised 2enal Code and that it is no lon%er reFuired that there ,e at least four ar*ed persons for*in% a ,and of ro,,ers. $he nu*,er of offenders is no lon%er an essential ele*ent of the cri*e of hi%hwa ro,,er . 3ence, the fact that there were onl three identified perpetrators is of no *o*ent. 2.7. "o. '8- onl reFuires proof that persons were or%ani<ed for the purpose of co**ittin% hi%hwa ro,,er indiscri*inatel . D$he ro,,er *ust ,e directed not onl a%ainst specific, intended or preconceived victi*s, ,ut a%ainst an and all prospective victi*s.E In this case, the accused, intendin% to co**it ro,,er , waited at the #aran%a !apili crossin% for an vehicle that would happen to travel alon% that road. $he driver Rodito 5asap and his passen%ers were not predeter*ined tar%ets. Rather, the ,eca*e the accusedCs victi*s ,ecause the happened to ,e travelin% at the ti*e when the accused were there. $here was, thus, rando*ness in the selection of the victi*s, or the act of co**ittin% ro,,er indiscri*inatel , which differentiates this case fro* that of a si*ple ro,,er with ho*icide. 2HEREFORE, 7ecision is AFFIR!E7. SOCORRO $. RA!IREC, petitioner, vs. HONORA"LE COURT OF APPEALS, +1) ESTER S. GARCIA, respondents. R.A 1->> FAC$S= A civil case da*a%es was filed , petitioner Socorro 7. Ra*ire< in the Re%ional $rial Court of Bue<on Cit alle%in% that the private respondent, Ester S. Garcia, in a confrontation in the latter;s office, alle%edl ve?ed, insulted and hu*iliated her in a Phostile and furious *oodP and in a *anner offensive to petitioner;s di%nit and personalit ,P contrar to *orals, %ood custo*s and pu,lic polic . In support of her clai*, petitioner produced a ver,ati* transcript of the event and sou%ht *oral da*a%es, attorne ;s fees and other e?penses of liti%ation in the a*ount of [email protected]
/>,>>>.>>, in addition to costs, interests and other reliefs awarda,le at the trial court;s discretion. $he transcript on which the civil case was ,ased was culled fro* a tape recordin% of the confrontation *ade , petitioner. Upon arrai%n*ent, in lieu of a plea, petitioner filed a !otion to Buash the Infor*ation on the %round that the facts char%ed do not constitute an offense, particularl a violation of R.A. 1->>. In an order !a 8, /0.0, the trial court %ranted the !otion to Buash, a%reein% with petitioner that /( the facts char%ed do not constitute an offense under R.A. 1->>G and that -( the violation punished , R.A. 1->> refers to a the tapin% of a co**unication , a person ot!er than a participant to the co**unication. ISSUE=
9K" Socorro 7. Ra*ire< is %uilt of RA 1->> Anti- wire $appin% Act. 3E57= $he nature of the conversations is i**aterial to a violation of the statute. $he su,stance of the sa*e need not ,e specificall alle%ed in the infor*ation. 9hat R.A. 1->> penali<es are the acts of secretl o'er!earing% intercepting or recording private co**unications , *eans of the devices enu*erated therein. $he *ere alle%ation that an individual *ade a secret recordin% of a private co**unication , *eans of a tape recorder would suffice to constitute an offense under Section / of R.A. 1->>. As the Solicitor General pointed out in his C4!!E"$ ,efore the respondent court= P"owhere &in the said law( is it reFuired that ,efore one can ,e re%arded as a violator, the nature of the conversation, as well as its co**unication to a third person should ,e professed. 2etitioner vi%orousl ar%ues, as her P*ain and principal issueP ( that the applica,le provision of Repu,lic Act 1->> does not appl to the tapin% of a private conversation , one of the parties to the conversation. She contends that the provision *erel refers to the unauthori<ed tapin% of a private conversation , a part other than those involved in the co**unication. D In relation to this, petitioner avers that the su,stance or content of the conversation *ust ,e alle%ed in the Infor*ation, otherwise the facts char%ed would not constitute a violation of R.A. 1->>. 9 Finall , petitioner a%ues that R.A. 1->> penali<es the tapin% of a Pprivate co**unication,P not a Pprivate conversationP and that conseFuentl , her act of secretl tapin% her conversation with private respondent was not ille%al under the said act. 10 9e disa%ree. 5e%islative intent is deter*ined principall fro* the lan%ua%e of a statute. 9here the lan%ua%e of a statute is clear and una*,i%uous, the law is applied accordin% to its e?press ter*s, and interpretation would ,e resorted to onl where a literal interpretation would ,e either i*possi,le 11 or a,sur, or would lead to an in+ustice. 12 Section / of R.A. 1->> entitled, P An Act to 2rohi,it and 2enali<ed 9ire $appin% and 4ther Related 6iolations of 2rivate Co**unication and 4ther 2urposes,P provides= Sec. /. It shall ,e unlawfull for an person, not ,ein% authori<ed , all the parties to an private co**unication or spo)en word, to tap an wire or ca,le, or , usin% an other device or arran%e*ent, to secretl overhear, intercept, or record such co**unication or spo)en word , usin% a device co**onl )nown as a dictaphone or dicta%raph or detectaphone or wal)ietal)ie or tape recorder, or however otherwise descri,ed. $he aforestated provision clearl and uneFuivocall *a)es it ille%al for an person, not authori<ed , all the parties to an private co**unication to secretl record such co**unication , *eans of a tape recorder. $he law *a)es no distinction as to whether the part sou%ht to ,e penali<ed , the statute ou%ht to ,e a part other than or different fro* those involved in the private co**unication. $he statute;s intent to penali<e all persons unauthori<ed to *a)e such recordin% is underscored , the use of the Fualifier Pan P. ConseFuentl , as respondent Court of Appeals correctl concluded, Peven a &person( priv to a co**unication who records his private conversation with another without the )nowled%e of the latter &will( Fualif as a violatorP 13 under this provision of R.A. 1->>.
A perusal of the Senate Con%ressional Records, *oreover, supports the respondent court;s conclusion that in enactin% R.A. 1->> our law*a)ers indeed conte*plated to *a)e ille%al, unauthori<ed tape recordin% of private conversations or co**unications ta)en either , the parties the*selves or , third persons. 93EREF4RE, ,ecause the law, as applied to the case at ,ench is clear and una*,i%uous and leaves us with no discretion, the instant petition is here, 7E"IE7. $he decision appealed fro* is AFFIR!E7. Costs a%ainst petitioner.