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Special Penal Laws Notes

Special Penal Laws Notes

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my personal notes/midterms reviewer
compiled from books of Boado, Reyes, San Beda Memaid, cases, etc...
my personal notes/midterms reviewer
compiled from books of Boado, Reyes, San Beda Memaid, cases, etc...

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Published by: Stephanie Laya Narvaez on Sep 01, 2011
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MALA IN SE VS. MALA PROHIBITAMala in seMala prohibita
Wrong from its verynature, such as theft,rape, homicide, etcWrong because it isprohibited by statute,such as illegalpossession of firearmsSo serious in theireffects on society asto call for almostunanimouscondemnation of itsmembersViolations of mererules of conveniencedesigned to secure amore orderlyregulation of the affairsof societyGood faith is a validdefense; unless thecrime is the result ofculpaGood faith is not adefenseIntent is an elementCriminal intent isimmaterial; the onlyinquiry is: “has the lawbeen violated?;criminal intent notnecessary where theacts are prohibited forreasons of publicpolicy, as in illegalpossession of firearmsTerm refers generallyto felonies defined andpenalized by the RPCTerm refers generallyto acts made criminalby special lawsThere are crimes in the RPC which wereoriginally defined and penalized by speciallaws. Among them are possession of opium,malversation, brigandage and libel.The degree ofaccomplishment of thecrime is taken intoaccount in punishingthe offenderThe act gives rise to acrime only when it isconsummated
Mala in seMala prohibita
Mitigating andaggravatingcircumstances aretaken into account inimposing the penaltyMitigating andaggravatingcircumstances aregenerally not takeninto accountWhen there is morethan one offender, thedegree of participationof each in thecommission of thecrime is taken intoaccountDegree of participationis generally not takeninto account. All whoparticipated in the actare punished to thesame extentPenalty is computedon the basis ofwhether he is aprincipal offender, ormerely an accompliceor accessoryThe penalty imposedon the offenders arethe same whether theyare merelyaccomplices oraccessoriesWHEN THE ACTS ARE INHERENTLYIMMORAL, THEY ARE MALA IN SE, EVEN IFPUNISHED UNDER SPECIAL LAW.
People vs. Sunico, et al (C.A., 50 o.g. 5880) 
The accused were election inspectorsand poll clerks whose duty among others wasto transfer the names of excess voters in otherprecincts to the list of a newly created precinct.Several voters were omitted in the list.Because their names were not in the list, someof them were not allowed to vote. The accusedwere prosecuted for violation of Secs. 101 and103 of the Revised Election Code. Theaccused claimed that they made the omissionin good faith.The trial court seemed to believe thatnotwithstanding the fact that the accusedcommitted in good faith the serious offensecharged, the latter are criminally responsibletherefor, because such offense is malumprohibitum, and, consequently, the actconstituting the same need not be committedwith malice or criminal intent to be punishable.
The acts of the accused cannot bemerely mala prohibita - they are mala per se .
Complied and Transcribed by STEPHANIE NARVAEZ1
The omission or failure to include a voter’sname in the registry list of voters is not onlywrong because it is prohibited; it is wrong perse because it disenfranchises a voter andviolates one of his fundamental rights. Hence,for such act to be punishable, it must be shownthat it has been committed with malice. Thereis no clear showing in the instant case that theaccused intentionally, willfully and maliciouslyomitted or failed to include in the registry list ofvoters the names of those voters. They cannotbe punished criminally.
the Revised Election Code, as far as its penalprovisions are concerned, is a special law, itbeing not a part of the RPC or its amendments.
Section 1. Violations penalized by special actsshall, unless otherwise provided in such acts,prescribe in accordance with the followingrules:
after a year for offenses punished only by afine or by imprisonment for not more than onemonth, or both;
after four years for those punished byimprisonment for more than one month, butless than two years;
after eight years for those punished byimprisonment for two years or more, but lessthan six years; and
after twelve years for any other offensepunished by imprisonment for six years ormore, except the crime of treason, which shallprescribe after twenty years. Provided,however, That all offenses against any law orpart of law administered by the Bureau ofInternal Revenue shall prescribe after fiveyears. Violations penalized by municipalordinances shall prescribe after two months.(As amended by Act No. 3585 and by Act No.3763, approved November 23, 1930.)Sec. 2. Prescription shall begin to run from theday of the commission of the violation of thelaw, and if the same be not known at the time,from the discovery thereof and the institution of judicial proceeding for its investigation andpunishment.The prescription shall be interruptedwhen proceedings are instituted against theguilty person, and shall begin to run again ifthe proceedings are dismissed for reasons notconstituting jeopardy.Sec. 3. For the purposes of this Act, specialacts shall be acts defining and penalizingviolations of the law not included in the PenalCode.Sec. 4. This Act shall take effect on itsapproval.Approved: December 4, 1926
Panaguiton Jr vs Department of Justice G.R. No. 167571November 25, 2008 
:Based from the facts culled from the records, in1992, Rodrigo Cawili borrowed various sums ofmoney amounting to P1,979,459.00 frompetitioner. On 8 January 1993, Cawili and hisbusiness associate, Ramon C. Tongson, jointlyissued in favor of petitioner three (3) checks inpayment of the said loans. Significantly, allthree (3) checks bore the signatures of bothCawili and Tongson. Upon presentment forpayment on 18 March 1993, the checks weredishonored, either for insufficiency of funds orby the closure of the account. Petitioner madeformal demands to pay the amounts of thechecks upon Cawili on 23 May 1995 and uponTongson on 26 June 1995, but to no avail.On 24 August 1995, petitioner filed acomplaint against Cawili and Tongson forviolating Batas Pambansa Bilang 22 (B.P. Blg.22) before the Quezon City Prosecutor'sOffice. During the preliminary investigation,only Tongson appeared and filed his counter-affidavit. However, Tongson claimed that hehad been unjustly included as party-respondent in the case since petitioner had lentmoney to Cawili in the latter's personalcapacity. Tongson averred that he was notCawili's business associate; in fact, he himselfhad filed several criminal cases against Cawilifor violation of B.P. Blg. 22. Tongson deniedthat he had issued the bounced checks andpointed out that his signatures on the saidchecks had been falsified.
Complied and Transcribed by STEPHANIE NARVAEZ2
To counter these allegations,petitioner presented several documentsshowing Tongson's signatures, which werepurportedly the same as those appearing onthe checks. He also showed a copy of anaffidavit of adverse claim wherein Tongsonhimself had claimed to be Cawili's businessassociate.In a resolution dated 6 December1995, City Prosecutor III Eliodoro V. Lara foundprobable cause only against Cawili anddismissed the charges against Tongson.Petitioner filed a partial appeal before theDepartment of Justice (DOJ) even while thecase against Cawili was filed before the propercourt. In a letter-resolution dated 11 July 1997,after finding that it was possible for Tongson toco-sign the bounced checks and that he haddeliberately altered his signature in thepleadings submitted during the preliminaryinvestigation, Chief State Prosecutor JovencitoR. Zuño directed the City Prosecutor ofQuezon City to conduct a reinvestigation of thecase against Tongson and to refer thequestioned signatures to the National Bureauof Investigation (NBI).Tongson moved for thereconsideration of the resolution, but hismotion was denied for lack of merit.On 15 March 1999, Assistant CityProsecutor Ma. Lelibet S. Sampaga (ACPSampaga) dismissed the complaint againstTongson without referring the matter to the NBIper the Chief State Prosecutor's resolution. Inher resolution, ACP Sampaga held that thecase had already prescribed pursuant to ActNo. 3326, as amended, which provides thatviolations penalized by B.P. Blg. 22 shallprescribe after four (4) years.Petitioner appealed to the DOJ. But the DOJ,through Undersecretary Manuel A.J.Teehankee, dismissed the same, stating thatthe offense had already prescribed pursuant toAct No. 3326. Petitioner filed a motion forreconsideration of the DOJ resolution.On 3 April 2003, the DOJ, this timethrough then Undersecretary Ma. MerceditasN. Gutierrez, ruled in his favor and declaredthat the offense had not prescribed and thatthe filing of the complaint with the prosecutor'soffice interrupted the running of the prescriptiveperiod citing Ingco v. Sandiganbayan.However, in a resolution dated 9August 2004, the DOJ, presumably acting on amotion for reconsideration filed by Tongson,ruled that the subject offense had alreadyprescribed and ordered "the withdrawal of thethree (3) informations for violation of B.P. Blg.22" against Tongson. In justifying its suddenturnabout, the DOJ explained that Act No.3326 applies to violations of special acts thatdo not provide for a prescriptive period for theoffenses thereunder. Since B.P. Blg. 22, as aspecial act, does not provide for theprescription of the offense it defines andpunishes, Act No. 3326 applies to it, and notArt. 90 of the Revised Penal Code whichgoverns the prescription of offenses penalizedthereunder.Petitioner thus filed a petition forcertiorari before the Court of Appeals assailingthe 9 August 2004 resolution of the DOJ. Thepetition was dismissed by the Court of Appealsin view of petitioner's failure to attach a properverification and certification of non-forumshopping. In the instant petition, petitionerclaims that the Court of Appeals committedgrave error in dismissing his petition ontechnical grounds and in ruling that the petitionbefore it was patently without merit and thequestions are too unsubstantial to requireconsideration.The DOJ, in its comment, states thatthe Court of Appeals did not err in dismissingthe petition for non-compliance with the Rulesof Court. It also reiterates that the filing of acomplaint with the Office of the City Prosecutorof Quezon City does not interrupt the runningof the prescriptive period for violation of B.P.Blg. 22. It argues that under B.P. Blg. 22, aspecial law which does not provide for its ownprescriptive period, offenses prescribe in four(4) years in accordance with Act No. 3326.
:Whether there is prescriptive period uponviolating B.P. Blg. 22 per Act No. 3326 and notArt. 90 of the RPC, on the institution of judicialproceedings for investigation and punishment?
:It must be pointed out that when Act No. 3326was passed on 4 December 1926, preliminaryinvestigation of criminal offenses wasconducted by justices of the peace, thus, thephraseology in the law, "institution of judicial
Complied and Transcribed by STEPHANIE NARVAEZ3

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