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Natural Resources Case Digests

Natural Resources Case Digests

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Published by Hazel Dalus

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Published by: Hazel Dalus on Jun 20, 2012
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04/25/2014

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PEDRO LEE HONG HOK, SIMEON LEE HONG HOK, ROSITA LEE HONG HOK andLEONCIO LEE HONG HOK, petitioners, vs. ANIANO DAVID, THE HON.SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES, THE DIRECTOROF LANDS and COURT OF APPEALS, respondents.No. L-30389. December 27, 1972.FACTS:
Petitioners in this appeal by certiorari seek to reverse a decision of respondent Court of Appeals affirming a lower court judgment dismissing their complaint to have the Torrens Title of respondent Aniano David declared null and void. According to the Stipulation of Facts, since thefiling of the sales application of Aniano David and during all the proceedings in connection withsaid application, up to the actual issuance of the sales patent in his favor, the plaintiffs appellantsdid not put up any opposition or adverse claim thereto. David acquired lawful title pursuant tohis miscellaneous sales application in accordance with which an order of award and for issuanceof a sales patent was made by the Director of Lands on June 18, 1958, covering Lot 2892containing an area of 226 square meters, which is a portion of Lot 2863 of the Naga Cadastre, Onthe basis of the order of award of the Director of Lands the Undersecretary of Agriculture andNatural Resources issued on August 26, 1959, Miscellaneous Sales Patent No. V-1209 pursuantto which OCT No. 510 was issued by the Register of Deeds of Naga City to defendant-appelleeAniano David on October 21, 1959.
ISSUE:
Can petitioners bring an action to cancel a void certificate of title issued pursuant to avoid patent?
RULING:
NO. Only the Government, represented by the Director of Lands, or the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources, can bring an action to cancel a void certificate of title issuedpursuant to a void patent Whether the grant was in conformity with the law or not is a questionwhich the government may raise, but until it is raised by the government and set aside, thedefendant cannot question it. The legality of the grant is a question between the grantee and thegovernment.
 
OH CHO, applicant and appellee, vs. THE DIRECTOR OF LANDS, oppositor andappellant.[No. 48321. August 31, 1946]FACTS:
The opposition of the Director of Lands is based on the applicant's lack of title to thelot, and on his disqualification, as alien, from acquiring lands of the public domain. Theapplicant, who is an alien, and his predecessors in interest have been in open, continuous,exclusive and notorious possession of the lot from 1880 to the filing of the application forregistration on January 17, 1940. The applicant failed to show that he has title to the lot that maybe confirmed under the Land Registration Act. He failed to show that he or any of hispredecessors in interest had acquired the lot from the Government, either by purchase or bygrant, under the laws, orders and decrees promulgated by the Spanish Government in thePhilippines, or by possessory information under the Mortgage Law (section 19, Act 496).
ISSUE:
Whether or not the applicant is entitled to a decree of registration thereof under theprovisions of the Public Land Act (C. A. No, 141)?
RULING:
No. Under the provisions of the Act invoked by the applicant, he is not entitled to adecree of registration of the lot, because he is an alien disqualified from acquiring lands of thepublic domain (sections 48, 49, C. A. No. 141).The sale of the lot to the applicant should havebeen declared null and void.Judgment is reversed and the application for registration dismissed, without costs.
 
SAN MIGUEL CORPORATION, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS and DIRECTOROF LANDS, respondents.G.R. No. 57667. May 28, 1990.*FACTS:
In this petition for review on certiorari, San Miguel Corporation seeks the reversal of the decision of the Court of Appeals denying its application for registration of a parcel of land inview of its failure to show entitlement thereto. On December 23, 1975, petitioner San MiguelCorporation (SMC for brevity) purchased from Silverio Perez Lot 684, a 14,531-square-meterparcel of land located in Sta. Anastacia, Sto. Tomas, Batangas, in consideration of the sum of P133,084.80.2 On February 21, 1977, claiming ownership in fee simple of the land, SMC filedbefore the then Court of First Instance, now Regional Trial Court of Batangas an application forits registration under the Land Registration Act. The Solicitor General, appearing for the
Republic of the Philippines, opposed the application for registration contending that SMC’s
claim of ownership in fee simple on the basis of a Spanish title or grant could no longer beavailed of by the applicant as the six-month period from February 16, 1976 prescribed byPresidential Decree No. 892 had elapsed; that the parcel of land in question is part of the publicdomain, and that SMC, being a private corporation, is disqualified under Section 11, Article XIVof the Constitution from holding alienable lands of the public domain. The Solicitor Generalthereafter authorized the Provincial Fiscal of Batangas to appear in said case, subject to hissupervision and control.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the evidence presented by the petitioner is sufficient to warrant a rulingthat SMC and/ or its predecessor-in-interest has a registrable right over Lot 684?
RULING:
The Court holds that there is paucity of evidence of actual, notorious and exclusivepossession of the property on the part of vendor Silverio Perez so as to attach to it the characterof an express grant from the government. Indeed, as correctly held by the Court of Appeals,
Silverio Perez’s testimony, being uncorrob
orated, is simply self-serving and hence, undeservingof any weight.WHEREFORE, the decision of the Court of Appeals is hereby AFFIRMED.

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