People vs Sendaydiego, et. al.

Chester Cabalza recommends his visitors to please read the original & full text of the case cited. Xie xie! People vs Sendaydiego, et. al. G.R. No. L-33254 and 33253 January 20, 1978 Facts: In these three cases of malversation through falsification, the prosecution's theory is that in 1969 Licerio P. Sendaydiego, the provincial treasurer of Pangasinan, in conspiracy with Juan Samson y Galvan, an employee of a lumber and hardware store in Dagupan City, and with Anastacio Quirimit, the provincial auditor, as an accomplice, used six (6) forged provincial vouchers in order to embezzle from the road and bridge fund the total sum of P57,048.23. The provincial voucher in these cases has several parts. In the upper part with the legend "ARTICLE OR SERVICE" the nature of the obligation incurred is indicated. That part is supposed to be signed by two officials of the provincial engineer's office and by the governor's representative. The middle part of the voucher contains five numbered printed paragraphs. Paragraph 1 is a certificate to be signed by the creditor. It is stated therein that the creditor vouches that the expenses "were actually and necessarily incurred". In the instant cases paragraph 1 was not signed presumably because it is not relevant to the purchase of materials for public works projects. Paragraph 2 is a certification that the expenses are correct and have been lawfully incurred. It is signed by the provincial engineer. Paragraph 3 contains these words: "Approved for pre-audit and payment, appropriations and funds being available therefore." This is signed by the provincial treasurer. Paragraph 4 is a certification which, as filed up in Exhibit K, Voucher No. 10724 dated February 28, 1969, certifying that the voucher has been pre-audited and signed by the auditor. Paragraph 5 is a certification signed by the provincial treasurer that the account mentioned in the provincial engineer's certification "was paid in the amount and on the date shown below and is chargeable as shown in the summary hereof. " It may be noted that the provincial treasurer signs two part of the voucher. Issue: Whether or not appellants are liable for the crimes of falsicification of public documents and six crimes of malversation? Held: Samson is convicted of six crimes of falsification of a public document and six crimes of malversation. In lieu of the penalties imposed by the trial court, he is sentenced to the following penalties: For each of the six falsification of the vouchers (Exh. K, O, P, Q, R and S), Samson is sentenced to an indeterminate penalty of two (2) years of prison correccional minimum, as minimum, to four (4) years of prision correccional medium, as maximum, and to pay a fine of three thousand pesos. For the malversation of the sum of P16,727.52 covered by voucher No. 10724 (Exh. K), Samson is sentenced to an indeterminate penalty of twelve (12) years of prision mayor maximum, as minimum, to seventeen (17) years of reclusion temporal medium, as maximum; to pay a fine in the amount of P16,727.52, and to indemnify the province of Pangasinan in the same amount (Criminal Case NO. 23349, L-

33252). For the malversation of the sum of P14,571.81 covered by voucher No. 11995 (Exh. O), Samson is sentenced to an indeterminate penalty of twelve (12) years of prision mayor maximum, as minimum, to seventeen (17) years of reclusion temporal medium, as maximum; to pay a fine in the sum of P14,571.81, and to indemnify the province of Pangasinan in the same amount (Criminal Case No. 23351, L-33254). For the malversation of the sum of P6,290.60 covered by voucher No. 11870 (Exh. Q), Samson is sentenced to an indertiminate penalty of nine (9) years of prision mayor medium, as minimum, to thirteen (13) years of reclusion temporal minimum, as maximum; to pay a fine of P6,290.60, and to indemnify the province of Pangasinan in the same amount (Criminal Case No. 23350, L33253). For the malversation of the sum of P9,769.64 covered by voucher No. 11871 (Exh. R), Samson is sentenced to an indeterminate penalty of nine (9) years of prision mayor medium, as minimum, to thirteen (13) years of reclusion temporal minimum, as maximum; to pay a fine of P9,769.64, and to indemnify the province of Pangasinan in the same amount (Criminal Case No. 23350, L-33253). For the malversation of the sum of P5,187.28, covered by voucher No. 11869 (Exh. P), Samson is sentenced to an indeterminate penalty of five (5) years of prision correccional maximum, as minimum, to eight (8) of prision mayor minimum, as maximum; to pay a fine of P5,187.28, and to indemnify the province of Pangasinan in the same amount (Criminal Case No. 23350, L-33253). For the malversation of the sum of P4,501.38 covered by voucher no. 11872 (Exh. S), Samson is sentenced to an indeterminate penalty of five (5) years of prision correccional maximum, as minimum, to eight (8) years of prision mayor minimum, as maximum; to pay a fine of P4,501.38, and to indemnify the province of Pangasinan in the same amount (Criminal Case No. 23350, L-33253). In the service of the twelve penalties meted to Samson, the threefold limit provided for in article 70 of the Revised Penal Code should be observed (People vs. Escares, 102 Phil. 677), meaning that the maximum penalty that he should serve is three times the indeterminate sentence of twelve (12) years to seventeen (17) years, the severest penalty imposed on him, or thirty-six (36) years to fifty-one (51) years (see People vs. Peñas, 68 Phil. 533). The maximum duration of his sentences should not exceed forty (40) years (Penultimate par. of art. 70; People vs. Alisub, 69 Phil. 362; People vs. Concepcion, 59 Phil. 518, 68 Phil. 530 and 69 Phil. 58). The estate of the late Licerio P. Sendaydiego is ordered to indemnify the province of Pangasinan in the sum of P57,048.23. Samson and the said estate are solitarily liable for the said indemnity (Art. 110, Revised Penal Code). Samson should pay one-half of the costs. SO ORDERED.

G.R. No. 73998 November 14, 1988 PEDRO T. LAYUGAN, petitioner, vs. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT, GODOFREDO ISIDRO, and TRAVELLERS MULTIINDEMNITY CORPORATION, respondents. Edralin S. Mateo for petitioner. Orlando L. Espinas for respondent Travellers Multi-Indemnity Corp. Roberto T. Vallarta for respondent Godofredo Isidro.

SARMIENTO, J.: Assailed in this petition for review on certiorari are 1) the decision 1 of the then Intermediate Appellate Court 2 in AC-G.R. CV No. 01055, entitled "Pedro T. Layugan, Plaintiff-Appellee, versus Godofredo Isidro, Defendant-Appellant and Third-Party Plaintiff-Appellee, versus Travellers Multi-Indemnity Corporation, Third Party Defendant- Appellant, "which reversed and set aside the decision 3 of the Regional Trial Court, Third Judicial Region, Branch XXVI, Cabanatuan City, and also dismissed the complaint, third party complaint, and the counter claims of the parties and 2) the resolution 4 denying the plaintiff-appellee's (herein petitioner) motion for reconsideration, for lack of merit. The findings of fact by the trial court which were adopted by the appellate court are as follows: 5 xxx xxx xxx Pedro T. Layugan filed an action for damages against Godofredo Isidro, alleging that on May 15, 1979 while at Baretbet, Bagabag, Nueva Vizcaya, the Plaintiff and a companion were repairing the tire of their cargo truck with Plate No. SU-730 which was parked along the right side of the National Highway; that defendant's truck bearing Plate No. PW-583, driven recklessly by Daniel Serrano bumped the plaintiff, that as a result, plaintiff was injured and hospitalized at Dr. Paulino J. Garcia Research and Medical Center and the Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital; that he spent TEN THOUSAND PESOS (Pl0,000.00) and will incur more expenses as he recuperates from said injuries; that because of said injuries he would be deprived of a lifetime income in the sum of SEVENTY THOUSAND PESOS (P70,000.00); and that he agreed to pay his lawyer the sum of TEN THOUSAND PESOS (Pl0,000.00). As prayed for by the plaintiffs counsel, the Court declared the defendant in default on October 12, 1979, and plaintiff's evidence was received ex-parte on January 11, 1978 and February 19, 1980. The decision on behalf of the plaintiff was set aside to give a chance to the defendant to file his answer and later on, a third-party complaint. Defendant admitted his ownership of the vehicle involved in the accident driven by Daniel Serrano. Defendant countered that the plaintiff was merely a bystander, not a truck helper being a brother-in-law law of the driver of said truck; that the truck allegedly being repaired was parked, occupying almost half of the right lane towards Solano, Nueva Vizcaya, right after the curve; that the proximate cause of the incident was the failure of the driver of the parked truck in installing the early warning device, hence the driver of the parked car should be liable for damages sustained by the truck of the herein defendant in the amount of more than P20,000.00; that plaintiff being a mere bystander and hitchhiker must suffer all the damages he incurred. By way of counterclaim defendant alleged that due to plaintiffs baseless complaint he was constrained to engage the services of counsel for P5,000.00 and P200.00 per court appearance; that he suffered sleepless nights, humiliation, wounded feelings which may be estimated at P30.000.00. On May 29, 1981, a third-party complaint was filed by the defendant against his insurer, the Travellers Multi Indemnity Corporation; that the third-party plaintiff, without admitting his liability to the plaintiff, claimed that the thirdparty defendant is liable to the former for contribution, indemnity and

000. He was employed as security guard in Mandaluyong. Pedro Layugan declared that he is a married man with one (1) child. his left leg was amputated so he had to use crutches to walk. under vehicle policy No. The collision dislodged the jack from the parked truck and pinned the plaintiff to the ground. When he is off-duty.00) per trip. Due to said injuries.00 for the damages sustained by this truck but not the third party liability. The truck owner used to instruct him to be careful in driving. third-party defendant was constrained to engage the services of counsel for a fee of P3. Nueva Vizcaya by the driver of the defendant. DANIEL SERRANO. Nueva Vizcaya on May 16.000.) xxx xxx xxx Upon such findings. its liability shall in no case exceed the limit defined under the terms and conditions stated therein. declared that he gave a statement before the municipal police of Bagabag. Daniel Serrano. 118 to 120. that the accident in question was approximately caused by the carelessness and gross negligence of the plaintiff-. the dispositive part of which reads as follows: 6 . defendant driver. Third-party defendant answered that. Record on Appeal. amply supported by the evidence on record. the trial court rendered its decision. plaintiff. The police report confirmed the allegation of the plaintiff and admitted by Daniel Serrano on cross-examination. 1979. he checked the truck.00.00) monthly. his family is now being supported by his parents and brother. "C") when gangrene had set in. The left leg of the plaintiff from below the knee was later on amputated (Exh. defendant/third-party plaintiff. it has been established clearly that the injuries sustained by the plaintiff was caused by defendant's driver. that he knew the responsibilities of a driver. plaintiff sustained injuries on his left forearm and left foot. GODOFREDO ISIDRO. he worked as a truck helper and while working as such.00) to THREE HUNDRED PESOS (P300. that the complaint is premature as no claim has been submitted to the third party defendant as prescribed under the Insurance Code.00) a month. (pp. while the same was at a stop position.subrogation by virtue of their contract under Insurance Policy No. Metro Manila. 1978. that before leaving. testified that his truck involved in this vehicular accident is insured with the Travellers Multi Indemnity Corporation covering own damage and third-party liability. 11723 (Exh. with a salary of SIX HUNDRED PESOS (600. he sustained injuries as a result of the bumping of the cargo truck they were repairing at Baretbet. Prior to the incident. "1") dated May 30. that after he filed the insurance claim the insurance company paid him the sum of P18. He used to earn TWO HUNDRED PESOS (P200. at the rate of ONE HUNDRED PESOS (Pl00. he supported his family sufficiently. that by reason of the thirdparty complaint. Bagabag. He bumped the truck being repaired by Pedro Layugan. but after getting injured. bodily injuries and damage to property. even assuming that the subject matter of the complaint is covered by a valid and existing insurance policy. From the evidence presented. As a result thereof. 11723 which covers the insurer's liability for damages arising from death. thereby rendering him incapacitated for work depriving him of his income.

if the doctrine is inapplicable. 11 Be that as it may. c) FIVE THOUSAND (P5. 2) the inference made is manifestly mistaken. such as: 1) when the conclusion is a finding grounded entirely on speculation. WHETHER UPON THE GIVEN FACTS. the third-party complaint. WHETHER THE INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT ACTED CORRECTLY IN APPLYING THE DOCTRINE OF "RES IPSA LOQUITUR" WITH PROPER JURISPRUDENTIAL (sic) BASIS. 9 Indeed.claims of both appellants.00) PESOS for actual and compensatory damages. and the counter. The petitioner alleges the following errors. 5) the Court of Appeals went beyond the . we would hardly have any more time left for the weightier issues compelling and deserving our preferential attention.<äre||anº•1àw> Corollary thereto. is the question as to who is negligent.000. 3) there is grave abuse of discretion. 2. and d) To pay the costs of this suit. a) The sum of FIFTY THOUSAND (P50. On the third-party complaint.00) PESOS for attorney's fees.000. and b) The costs of this suit. b) TWO THOUSAND (P2. surmise. it is an elementary rule in the review of decisions of the Court of Appeals that its findings of fact are entitled to great respect and will not ordinarily be disturbed by this Court. this rule is not inflexible. 4) the judgment is based on misapprehension of facts. 7 Hence. premises considered. THE INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT ACTED CORRECTLY IN REVERSING AND SETTING ASIDE AND DISMISSING THE PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE'S COMPLAINT. the defendant is hereby ordered: a) To pay the plaintiff SEVENTY THOUSAND (P70.000.00) PESOS actual and compensatory damages. The crux of the controversy lies in the correctness or error of the decision of the respondent court finding the petitioner negligent under the doctrine of Res ipsa loquitur (The thing speaks for itself).000. this petition. the same is not reviewable by this Court in a petition for review by certiorari. 8 1. The Intermediate Appellate Court as earlier stated reversed the decision of the trial court and dismissed the complaint. the third-party defendant is ordered to indemnify the defendant/third party plaintiff-. or conjecture. Surely there are established exceptions 12 —when the Court should review and rectify the findings of fact of the lower court. 10 For if we have to review every question of fact elevated to us.00) PESOS for moral damages. The respondent corporation stresses that the issues raised in the petition being factual.WHEREFORE.

It must be noted that there was a motion for extension. the instant petition for review was filed on April 17. Consequently. 4. 8) the facts set forth in the petition as well as in the petitioner's main and reply briefs are not disputed by the respondents. did not cite specific evidence to support its conclusion. 1986. 1986 22 but it was only after three months. dated March 19. or conjecture. and 9 obtain in the instant case to warrant a deviation from the general rule. requesting for 30 days from March 20. and vigilance which the circumstances justly demand. 25 . 7. 15 The inference or conclusion is manifestly erroneous. the respondent court. in its comment 23 that the respondent corporation raised the issue of tardiness. 1986." Likewise a similar motion21 was filed with this Court also on April 1. it simply and nebulously adverted to unspecified "scanty evidence on record. or the doing of something which a prudent and reasonable man would not do 24 or as Judge Cooley defines it. on August 1. on April 1. 6) the findings of the Court of Appeals are contrary to those of the trial court. in the form of a lighted kerosene lamp. The respondent corporation should not have waited in ambush before the comment was required and before due course was given. "(T)he failure to observe for the protection of the interests of another person. and 9) when the findings of fact of the Court of Appeals are premised on the absence of evidence and are contradicted on record. whereby such other person suffers injury. 17 We see this negative finding of the respondent appellate court as a misreading of the facts and the evidence on record and directly contravening the positive finding of the trial court that an early warning device was in proper place when the accident happened and that the driver of the private respondent was the one negligent. We now come to the merits of this petition. to exact its "a pound of flesh". with the Court of Appeals. the respondent corporation would want us to dismiss this petition on the ground that it was filed out of time. again erroneously. that degree of care. requesting for 20 days extension "to file the Petition for Review on Certiorari. The question before us is who was negligent? Negligence is the omission to do something which a reasonable man. the respondent court inferred that the mishap was due to the negligence of the driver of the parked truck. 7) the said findings of fact are conclusions without citation of specific evidence on which they are based. an appearance of a new lawyer for the petitioner before the Supreme Court" with motion 20 was filed. in refusing to give its "imprimatur to the trial court's finding and conclusion that Daniel Serrano (private respondent Isidro's driver) was negligent in driving the truck that bumped the parked truck". 1986. In cavalier fashion." 18 On the technical aspect of the case. so to speak. precaution. 2. it is grounded on speculation. guided by those considerations which ordinarily regulate the conduct of human affairs. would do. 19 albeit filed erroneously with the respondent court. was installed by the driver of the parked truck three to four meters from the rear of his parked truck. 1986. From its finding that the parked truck was loaded with ten (10) big round logs 13 the Court of Appeals inferred that because of its weight the truck could not have been driven to the shoulder of the road and concluded that the same was parked on a portion of the road 14 at the time of the accident. In a large measure. it must be noted that private respondent Isidro did not raise this issue of late filing. Parenthetically. to file the necessary petition or pleading before the Supreme Court".issues of the case if the findings are contrary to the admission of both the appellant and the appellee. 6. Also. How the respondent court could have reversed the finding of the trial court that a warning device was installed 16escapes us because it is evident from the record that really such a device. surmise. at this very late stage. On the other hand. In any event. On the other hand. 1986. would cause a grave miscarriage of justice. Exceptions 1.

poses serious danger to a moving vehicle which has the right to be on the highway. or. The evidence on record discloses that three or four meters from the rear of the parked truck.In Picart vs. who claims to be a helper of the truck driver.. there is the admission of respondent Isidro's driver. like that required by law. Smith. The Law considers what would be reckless. by some other adequate means that would properly forewarn vehicles of the impending danger that the parked vehicle posed considering the time. to Wit: 29 Question No. to exercise extreme care so that the motorist negotiating the road would be properly forewarned of the peril of a parked vehicle. Isidro proffers that the petitioner must show to the satisfaction of a reasonable mind that the driver and he (petitioner) himself. The existence of negligence in a given case is not determined by reference to the personal judgment of the actor in the situation before him. while the immobile cargo truck had no business. a lighted kerosene lamp was placed. Respondent Isidro posits that any immobile object along the highway. I have (sic) found out later that the fluid pipe on the rear right was cut that's why the breaks did not function . Absent such proof of care. . (Emphasis supplied). like a parked truck. provided an early warning device. 27 Respondent Isidro's contention is untenable. I met another vehicle who (sic) did not dim his (sic) lights which cause (sic) me to be blinded with intense glare of the light that's why I did not notice a parked truck who (sic) was repairing a front flat tire. 15 May 1979 while driving Isuzu truck at Baretbet. we held: The test by which to determine the existence of negligence in a particular case may be stated as follows: Did the defendant in doing the alleged negligent act use that reasonable care and caution which an ordinarily prudent person would have used in the same situation ? If not. Likewise. blameworthy. 8 (by Patrolman Josefino Velasco)—Will you narrate to me in brief how the accident happens (sic) if you can still remember? Answer: (by Daniel Serrano) That on or about 10:40 p. to be there. When I was a few meters away. place. the petitioner herein. so to speak. and other peculiar circumstances of the occasion. Bagabag. who was fixing the flat tire of the said truck. as previously claimed. for. would. evoke the presumption of negligence on the part of the driver of the parked cargo truck as well as his helper. He argues that since the parked cargo truck in this case was a threat to life and limb and property.m. as in the case at bar. Isidro concludes. Daniel Serrano. then he is guilty of negligence. 26 decided more than seventy years ago but still a sound rule. I saw the truck which was loaded with round logs. or negligent in the man of ordinary intelligence and prudence and determines liability by that. The law here in effect adopts the standard supposed to be supplied by the imaginary conduct of the discreet paterfamilias of the Roman law. I step (sic) on my foot brakes but it did not function with my many attempts. Nueva Vizcaya and at KM 285. Isidro submits that the burden of proving that care and diligence were observed is shifted to the petitioner. his (Isidro's) Isuzu truck had a right to be on the road. 28 Moreover. it was incumbent upon the driver as well as the petitioner. under the doctrine of Res ipsa loquitur.

to be there. the respondent court committed reversible error. we agree with the following arguments of appellant Godofredo Isidro which would show that the accident was caused due to the negligence of the driver of the cargo truck: xxx xxx xxx . As a direct consequence of such accident the petitioner sustained injuries on his left forearm and left foot. At this juncture. it affords reasonable evidence. on the part of the driver of the parked cargo truck as well as plaintiff who was fixing the flat tire of said truck. His left leg was later amputated from below the knee when gangrene had set in. the motorists have the right to be on the road. In the case at bar the burden of proving that care and diligence was (sic) observed is shifted evidently to the plaintiff. and that the accident was one which ordinarily does not happen in absence of 32 . while the immobile truck has no business. It is thus for the plaintiff to show to the satisfaction of a reasonable mind that the driver and he himself did employ early warning device such as that required by law or by some other adequate means or device that would properly forewarn vehicles of the impending danger that the parked vehicle posed considering the time. 33 Or as Black's Law Dictionary 34 puts it: Res ipsa loquitur. that the accident arose from want of care. 14-17. It follows that in stamping its imprimatur upon the invocation by respondent Isidro of the doctrine of Res ipsa loquitur to escape liability for the negligence of his employee. as adverted to. still bumped the rear of the parked cargo truck. (Emphasis supplied).. and the accident is such as in the ordinary course of things does not happen if those who have the management use proper care. will evoke the presumption of negligence under the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur. for. Absent such proof of care. in the absence of an explanation by the defendant. 31 It is clear from the foregoing disquisition that the absence or want of care of Daniel Serrano has been established by clear and convincing evidence. the Isuzu truck driven by Daniel Serrano.Whether the cargo truck was parked along the road or on half the shoulder of the right side of the road would be of no moment taking into account the warning device consisting of the lighted kerosene lamp placed three or four meters from the back of the truck. 30 But despite this warning which we rule as sufficient. which arises upon proof that instrumentality causing injury was in defendant's exclusive control. so to speak. This doctrine is stated thus: "Where the thing which causes injury is shown to be under the management of the defendant. (pp. an employee of the private respondent. Appellant's Brief). The respondent court ruled: xxx xxx xxx In addition to this. as in the case at bar.. The thing speaks for itself Rebuttable presumption or inference that defendant was negligent. it may be enlightening and helpful in the proper resolution of the issue of negligence to examine the doctrine of Res ipsa loquitur. place and other peculiar circumstances of the occasion.

.. 2d 133. 2180. Under doctrine of "res ipsa loquitur" the happening of an injury permits an inference of negligence where plaintiff produces substantial evidence that injury was caused by an agency or instrumentality under exclusive control and management of defendant. 484 S. it is clear that the driver did not know his responsibilities because he apparently did not check his vehicle before he took it on the road. Co. Caltex. direct evidence is absent and not readily available. Inc. once the actual cause of injury is established beyond controversy. whether by the plaintiff or by the defendant. 43 Finally. Hillen v. the presumption is overcome and he is relieved from liability.. under the circumstances involved. when an injury is caused by the negligence of a servant or employee there instantly arises a presumption of law that there was negligence on the part of the master or employer either in the selection of the servant or employee. In this jurisdiction we have applied this doctrine in quite a number of cases.. 39 The rule. The private respondent is sued under Art. whatever the source of the evidence. where plaintiff has knowledge and testifies or presents evidence as to the specific act of negligence which is the cause of the injury complained of or where there is direct evidence as to the precise cause of the accident and all the facts and circumstances attendant on the occurrence clearly appear. and could have repaired it and thus the accident could have been avoided. no presumptions will be involved and the doctrine becomes inapplicable when the circumstances have been so completely eludicated that no inference of defendant's liability can reasonably be made. If follows necessarily that if the employer shows to the satisfaction of the court that in the selection and in the supervision he has exercised the care and diligence of a good father of a family. when applicable to the facts and circumstances of a particular case. is not intended to and does not dispense with the requirement of proof of culpable negligence on the part of the party charged. paragraph 5. In the first place. 155. or is overcome. If he did he could have discovered earlier that the brake fluid pipe on the right was cut. 45 In disclaiming liability for the incident. 37 The doctrine is not a rule of substantive law 38 but merely a mode of proof or a mere procedural convenience.negligence. App. Cruz and Co. vs. 44 as in this case. 41 The doctrine can be invoked when and only when.. vs. et al. or both. to our mind. CA. and that the occurrence was such that in the ordinary course of things would not happen if reasonable care had been used. Hooker Const. Moveover. the fact that the private respondent used to . may be rebutted. 46 We do not agree with the private respondent in his submission. In the latter.F. or in supervision over him after selection. Inc. 2176 in relation to Art. notably in Africa et al. it has generally been held that the presumption of inference arising from the doctrine cannot be availed of.W. 40 It merely determines and regulates what shall be prima facie evidence thereof and facilitates the burden of plaintiff of proving a breach of the duty of due care. Tex. 35 and the latest is in the case of F. Civ. 36 The doctrine of Res ipsa loquitur as a rule of evidence is peculiar to the law of negligence which recognizes that prima facie negligence may be established without direct proof and furnishes a substitute for specific proof of negligence. 42 Hence. of the Civil Code. Res ipsa loquitur is rule of evidence whereby negligence of alleged wrongdoer may be inferred from mere fact that accident happened provided character of accident and circumstances attending it lead reasonably to belief that in absence of negligence it would not have occurred and that thing which caused injury is shown to have been under management and control of alleged wrongdoer. Such presumption is juris tantum and not juris et de jure and consequently. the private respondent stresses that the negligence of his employee has already been adequately overcome by his driver's statement that he knew his responsibilities as a driver and that the truck owner used to instruct him to be careful in driving.

who would be directly in charge in maintaining the road worthiness of his (Isidro's) truck. Nos. while two other ones.: This is an appeal from the decision. [G. vs. Philippines. Province of Pampanga. In Criminal Case No. SO ORDERED. With costs against the private respondents. also for acts of lasciviousness. we hold that Isidro failed to prove that the diligence of a good father of a family in the supervision of his employees which would exculpate him from solidary liability with his driver to the petitioner. dated January 20. The Decision of the respondent court as well as its Resolution denying the petitioner's motion for reconsideration are hereby SET ASIDE and the decision of the trial court. Accordingly. There is paucity of proof that Isidro exercised the diligence of a good father of a family in the selection of his driver. if any. 97-307. paragraph 5. are not sufficient to destroy the finding of negligence of the Regional Trial Court given the facts established at the trial 47 The private respondent or his mechanic. convicting accused-appellant Lamberto Velasquez of (1) acts of lasciviousness committed against his granddaughter Aira Velasquez and sentencing him to suffer imprisonment from 12 years and 1 day of reclusion temporal minimum. 1998. as well as in the selection of his mechanic. Daniel Serrano. [1] dated February 12. But even if we concede that the diligence of a good father of a family was observed by Isidro in the supervision of his driver. as maximum. there is not an iota of evidence on record of the observance by Isidro of the same quantum of diligence in the supervision of his mechanic. were dismissed by the court for lack of jurisdiction. In another case for acts of lasciviousness. 1983. plaintiff-appellee. Angeles City. to 17 years of reclusion temporal medium. In the light of the circumstances obtaining in the case. that the driver was licensed. and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. WHEREFORE. 1997. But that is not all. as found by the respondent court. is hereby REINSTATED in toto. if any. the above-named .00. it was alleged— That sometime in the month of April.00. the petition is hereby GRANTED. DECISION MENDOZA.R. LAMBERTO VELASQUEZ. as minimum.intruct his driver to be careful in his driving. Branch 59.000. Municipality of Mabalacat. accused-appellant. and the fact that he had no record of any accident. 132635 & 143872–75. February 21.000. 2001] THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. should have conducted a thorough inspection of his vehicle before allowing his driver to drive it. J. and to indemnify Aira Velasquez in the amount of P30. accused-appellant was acquitted. the responsibility of Isidro as employer treated in Article 2180. Brgy. of the Regional Trial Court. Dau. of the Civil Code has not ceased. who must be competent. and (2) rape of his stepdaughter Mary Joy Ocampo and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of death and to indemnify Mary Joy Ocampo in the amount of P50. in order to insure the safe operation of his truck and thus prevent damage to others.

[2] In Criminal Case No. Municipality of Mabalacat. it was alleged— That sometime in the month of April. by inserting his finger into Kimberly’s vagina. 97-310.[4] In Criminal Case No. OCAMPO. by inserting his finger into Mary Joy’s vagina. and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. with lewd design and taking advantage of the innocence and tender age of the victim. in Brgy. did then and there willfully. the above-named accused. being the stepfather of the complainant. Philippines. Province of Pampanga. 97-311. 1997. Dau. Dau. 97-309.[5] In Criminal Case No. 1994. did then and there willfully. unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge with one MARY JOY D. did then and there willfully. . Dau. OCAMPO. VELASQUEZ. did then and there willfully. by means of force and against the will of the said complainant. by inserting his finger into Aira’s vagina. by means of force and against the will of the said complainant. the charge was— That sometime in the month of October. 1997. VELASQUEZ. Philippines and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. by means of force and against her will and consent. unlawfully and feloniously commit acts of lasciviousness upon the person of MARY JOY D. in Brgy. with lewd design and taking advantage of the innocence and tender age of the victim. by means of force and against the will of the said complainant. Philippines. Municipality of Mabalacat. being the grandfather of the complainant. ALL CONTRARY TO LAW. Province of Pampanga. unlawfully and feloniously commit acts of lasciviousness upon the person of MARY JOY D. Dau. 97-308. caressing and fondling her private parts. did then and there willfully. being the stepfather of the complainant. the abovenamed accused. then 13 years old. OCAMPO. Municipality of Mabalacat. a girl of 2 years of age. it was alleged— That sometime in the month of October. and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. it was recited— That sometime in the month of March.accused.[3] In Criminal Case No. a girl of 16 years of age. in Brgy. ALL CONTRARY TO LAW. with lewd design and taking advantage of the innocence and tender age of the victim. Philippines. a girl of 2 years of age. Province of Pampanga. then 13 years old. Municipality of Mabalacat. with lewd design and taking advantage of the innocence and tender age of the victim. ALL CONTRARY TO LAW. Province of Pampanga. unlawfully and feloniously commit acts of lasciviousness upon the person of AIRA G. 1994. the above-named accused. being the grandfather of the complainant. the above-named accused. unlawfully and feloniously commit acts of lasciviousness upon the person of KIMBERLY O. in Brgy. by then and there kissing her. by means of force and against the will of the said complainant. with lewd design and taking advantage of the innocence and tender age of the victim. ALL CONTRARY TO LAW. and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. being the stepfather of the complainant.

raised her shirt and bra. but not before warning her to keep quiet and not to tell anyone what he had done to her. slept in a room she shared with accused-appellant. Adelaido Velasquez. accused-appellant approached her and. On April 16. Mary Joy.[20] Up to April 1997. and started kissing her. namely. He lowered her shorts and underwear. Caridad. . Dau. Angelina.[11] After Dolores died in 1984. accused-appellant’s wife.[18] Mary Joy ran to the bathroom and examined herself. She felt pain when she washed herself. The prosecution presented Mary Joy Ocampo. although he continued kissing and fondling her. she found accused-appellant beside her on the floor. [7] whereupon the cases were consolidated and jointly tried. at 3 o’clock in the afternoon. On the other hand. while Mary Joy was watching television alone in the living room.[9] and Ryan. [14] She begot two more children by accused-appellant. Pampanga. Then he raised her shirt. has a daughter named Aira. by whom he had five children. accused-appellant married Angelina Dungca[16] and brought his children by Caridad and Dolores to live with them in Angelina’s three-bedroom house at 5069 New York Street. died of cancer. Dominic Aguda as witnesses. accused-appellant’s daughter by Caridad. Mary Grace Velasquez. During their marriage. Aira walked into the room crying. Rochelle Velasquez. though she tried to evade him. 5. sometimes forcing her to masturbate him and at other times licking her vagina. Renato Cruz. The evidence for the prosecution is as follows: Accused-appellant Lamberto Velasquez married Caridad Guevarra on March 14. 12. Her mother returned as she was about to go to school. Afterward. named Raymond and Raygel. and NBI medico-legal officer Dr. Robert. Mary Joy cried out in pain. pulled down her shorts and underwear. 1997. Sonia Velasquez. [10] Roan. and Edward. still in the month of October. 1965 and begot six children by her. and kissed her private parts. Dr.[13] Angelina already had three children by her husband Roberto Ocampo. Then he inserted his middle finger into her vagina and later had sexual intercourse with her. Rhea. namely. Angelina Velasquez. the defense presented accused-appellant.[12] accused-appellant lived in common-law relation with Eladio’s married daughter. her mother Angelina. and Raymond. Edwin Manson. he succeeded in forcing her to their room. then 13 years of age. Rochelle. Accusedappellant then left. [21] Regail Velasquez.ALL CONTRARY TO LAW. and her vagina was bleeding. Renel. [17] In October 1994. accused-appellant continuously molested Mary Joy. Aira complained that her grandfather did something to her. Regail Velasquez. accused-appellant inserted his middle finger into Mary Joy’s vagina. In 1987. prompting him to stop. her mother having left for the market. which made the latter remove his finger although he continued kissing her. and Roberto Velasquez as its witnesses. Mary Joy felt a sharp pain and tried to resist by kicking accused-appellant. He lived with Dolores and their children for more than eight years in a house which they rented from Eladio Dungca.[6] Accused-appellant pleaded not guilty to the charges against him. 1989. Her underwear had bloodstains. Raygel. Roel. Mabalacat. Ma.[19] Two weeks later. Don Cornelio. [8] Regail. Accused-appellant kissed her on the mouth and the breasts. he lived in common-law relation with Dolores Cabinan.[15] On November 8. while Regail was folding clothes. Mary Grace. Mario Manarang. and her two half-brothers. When she woke up in the morning. and Judan. namely. Randy. Ranold. but because of fear of accused-appellant she said nothing. Mary Joy Ocampo.

Regail talked to Mary Grace. Manson told them that “Sige. Edwin Manson to conduct a physical examination of Aira. Mary Grace told her husband Ranold about the doctor’s examination and findings. However. who made the same findings. 1997. with Mrs. and Regail remembered hearing that pus had also come out of the child’s vagina. after drinking beer. the doctor declined to give a medical certificate as she did not want to get involved in any case. They decided to file a case against him. where they obtained the assistance of a certain Mrs. His hands went lower. [26] That evening. When she told her about Dr. Angelina’s daughter. When Regail asked her why her vagina hurt.[27] On April 30. married Ranold Velasquez.which she demonstrated by opening her right leg and moving one of her right fingers toward her vagina. Lydia Buyboy. They then went back to the house. To prevent a recurrence of the event. Angelina was brought in. She also noticed that her daughter was running a fever.[22] Regail did not want to believe her daughter and thought that her father was just joking with the latter.”[28] After the examination. They also called Mary Joy who. But they did not know what to do. Buyboy. as a new couple. Angelina and accused-appellant spent the night at an aunt’s house in San Fernando. Mary Grace moved out of their house and went to live with her aunt in Angeles City. who told her that her daughter had lacerations in her vaginal area and that she had probably been fingered. raised her clothes. Meeting the same rejection. began to tell everything.[25] Kimberly was around Aira’s age. Regail noticed pus coming out of Aira’s vagina. Angelina cried as she could not believe what she had been told. a despedida was held for Angelina’s sister Loida Kellow. Buyboy’s findings. Mary Grace Ocampo Velasquez. Pampanga. She took Aira to Dr. However. with their relatives. Aira started to cry. Kimberly. checked in at the Monte Carlo Hotel in Dau. On that occasion. [24] Regail went home and told her stepmother everything. She recalled when. Dimabuyu. They gathered their things and. Angelina and Loida went to the police station to make a report. 1997. Mary Grace and Regail were summoned. She was unable to resist accused-appellant’s advances because of his strength and threats. Accused-appellant was no longer there. and brought them to Dr. accused-appellant went to her side. According to Mary Grace. showing her mother what had been done to her. However. Mary Grace testified that she had been molested by her father when she was nine years old. They went back to the Mabalacat Police Station and gave their statements. and Mary Joy. Buyboy refused to examine the children. Early the next morning. titingnan ko sila pero walang magandang resulta akong maibibigay sa inyo. Mabalacat. They next went to the Mabalacat District Hospital. Dr. However. They proceeded to the Ospital ng Angeles where. and fondled her breasts. Mary Grace was with them. she noticed that Aira complained of pain in her vagina while taking a bath. They could not talk to accused-appellant as he was always drunk and they were afraid of him. a private physician. Aira said it was because of the things her grandfather had been doing to her vagina. There were over 40 of them. Mary Grace lost no time and took Kimberly to Dr. who was leaving for the United States. they went to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). and that her vagina was red and swollen. fetched the children. In the days that followed. they went home. Dr. Dimabuyu’s help. they were able to prevail on Dr. Regail told her aunt about Aira’s and Kimberly’s ordeal. accused-appellant’s son by Caridad and Regail’s brother. Remembering that a similar thing had happened to her sister-in-law’s daughter.[23] On April 28. Lydia Buyboy for medical examination.[29] . and eventually they pieced together accused-appellant’s pattern of abuse.

vs.73. Aportadera. APORTADERA. 1997. Edgard Sta. The facts of the case are as follows: ScmisÓ Private respondent Edgard Sta. March 17.. 116754. JR. and Article 217 of the Revised Penal Code filed against private respondents Edgard Sta.73[3]representing an initial release of funds for the design and execution of the Wawa pipeline extension project in Morong. Rizal. The liquidation report was supported by a Reimbursement Expense Receipt[5] indicating that the P15. On 5 August 1992.: Assailed in this petition for certiorari is the Resolution[1] dated 28 March 1994 of the Office of the Ombudsman which dismissed the case for violation of R.A. No. service connection detail.R. PASCASIO.00 was paid to and received by a certain Engineer Ricardo Reyes. ABELARDO L. Dominic Aguda reported the following findings on Aira Velasquez: THIRD DIVISION [G. Morong.190. On 10 November 1992. When they returned home. and Francisco Villa are officials of the Office of the Ombudsman who are included as respondents in their official capacities as the public officers who promulgated the questioned resolution and order. Maria allegedly used the money as payment for the design. On May 9. Maria submitted a partial liquidation of expenses amounting to P15. of the Sitio Wawa Pipeline Extension. RAUL R. Respondent Sta. petitioner. while still the General Manager of MOWAD. 2000] MORONG WATER DISTRICT. at Loida’s prompting. On 3 August 1993. Maria and Emma Censon by herein petitioner Morong Water District. Arnau. Likewise assailed is the Order[2] dated dated 27 May 1994 denying petitioner’s motion for reconsideration. received from petitioner a cash advance of P33.190.000.790. and the interconnection detail.000. 3019.00 against the cash advance of P33. The amount was used for the Paglabas Pipeline Extension in compliance with the request of the Municipal Mayor. Abelardo L. OFFICE OF THE DEPUTY OMBUDSMAN. the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. accused-appellant had not returned. As indicated in the journal voucher [6] supporting the transaction. Raul R. EDGARD STA. Maria made a final liquidation of expenses amounting to P16. Maria. FRANCISCO VILLA. Pascasio. Sta. WIFRED L. MARIA and EMMA CENSON. J. was the former General Manager of petitioner Morong Water District in San Pedro. Respondents Wilfred L. Sta. Maria. MisÓ sc . as shown by a journal voucher[4] issued by petitioner.40. Private respondent Emma Censon was the advisor of the Local Water Utilities Administration assigned to petitioner Morong Water District.respondents. Rizal. Jr. they went to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) for another physical examination. including the pipelaying scheme. ARNAU. Scä DECISION GONZAGA_REYES. NBI medico-legal officer Dr. the diversion of funds was authorized by the Board of directors in a Board Meeting held on 9 October 1992.They stayed at the Monte Carlo Hotel for over four days.

The resolution stated that "(a)fter a meticulous examination of the records of the case. It was emphasized that the evidence on record.On 14 December 1992. the Ombudsman stated that the version of the respondents was more logical. through Graft Investigation Officer Aleu A. in fact.[10] For his part. Pacasio.[11] On March 28. they personally pocketed the aforesaid amount and the rest was spent in installing the water connections of the new market site of Morong. filed a complaint[7] before the Office of the Ombudsman-Luzon against private respondents Sta. 3019. respectively. Moreover. In view of their subsequent indictment. the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and Article 217 of the Revised Penal Code on malversation of public funds. issued the questioned Resolution dismissing the compliant. 1993 to the Chairman of the Board. the said officials vowed to get even with him by filing various complaints against him. public respondent. Mr.00 was given to a certain Engineer Ricardo Reyes when in fact. On 24 September 1993. Respondents denied the charges in their respective counter-affidavits. respondent Edgard Sta. Maria was ousted as General Manager of petitioner Morong Water District. Maria and Censon for alleged violations of R. of the Morong Water District in taking from the funds of the said office the amount of P33. The Order first noted that the motion for reconsideration did not raise any new issues and did not adduce any newly discovered evidence. pending with the Regional Trial Court of Morong.000. Rizal. Maximo San Diego. Cashier and Finance Manager and a certification[9] from the Local Water Utilities Administration that no person by the name of engineer Ricardo Reyes has ever been employed by their agency. Sta. She claimed that she was not the custodian of petitioner’s funds and that she did not have any participation in the preparation and execution of disbursement vouchers covering the release of funds. Maria stated in his counter-affidavit that he was forcibly ousted as petitioner’s General Manager on 14 December 1992 due to the criminal and administrative complaints he lodged against some members of petitioner’s Board of directors. San Juan.A. As proof. Amante. The complaint alleged that no such design was made. Maria and Censon confederated with one another and took advantage of their official positions as General Manager and Advisor." [12]Sppedâ On 6 May 1994. On May 27. petitioner attached the joint affidavit [8] of its Bookkeeper. and that respondents made it appear that the amount of P15. been duly liquidated by the respondents. issued the questioned Order dismissing the Motion for Reconsideration. With respect to the design for the Wawa Project. he claimed that he sent a letter dated March 29.190. Morong project. Rizal. public respondent. MisÓ spped In her counter-affidavit. particularly the "journal voucher" and "reimbursement expense receipt". natural and . Instead of dismissing the motion outright on this ground.00 as charged. there is no sufficient evidence to establish a probable cause for malversation or violation of RA 3019. respondent Emma Censon denied receiving the amount of P15. through Graft Investigation Officer Wilfredo L. indubitably disclosed that the sum allegedly misappropriated had. 1994. The complaint stated that respondents Sta. 1994. docketed as Civil Case No.000. the Office of the Ombudsman made an extended discussion of the issues raised by petitioner.75 for the purpose of paying for the design of MOWAD Wawa. He likewise averred that the present complaint is closely interrelated with another case. petitioner’s officer-in-charge. Aniceto Mateo. informing him that the original detailed design plans and drawings of the project were left at petitioner’s office. 492-M. petitioner filed a motion for Reconsideration [13] of the above Resolution.

Petitioner grounds the instant petition on the following allegation: Joä spped "(The) Hon. It is also disclosed by the same document that the cash advance was to be used for the design and execution of Project Wawa Pipeline Extension. but which diversion was authorized by the Board of Directors as per Board Meeting of October 9. the undersigned finds that there is no sufficient evidence to establish a probable cause for malversation or violation of R.A. With respect to respondent Edgard Sta.[16] On this point. It is worthy to note that this general ledger was signed by complainant’s witnesses.75 from the coffers of petitioner and then pocket P15. 1992." [14] There is no merit in the petition. Maria is the payee of Cash Voucher No. 3019 for that matter. Public respondent thus dismissed the motion for reconsideration and affirmed its Resolution dated 28 March 1994.190. [15] Section 14 of Republic Act No. As regards. Office of the Deputy Ombudsman acted arbitrarily. it is disclosed that it was prepared by the Bookkeeper. the Bookkeeper and the Finance Manager. 3150 dated August 3. whimsically and with grave abused (sic) of discretion and authority dismissed OMB Case No. Section 27 of the said Act provides further that "(f)indings of fact by the Office of the Ombudsman when supported by substantial evidence are conclusive. a reading of the petition shows that the issues raised refer primarily to the findings of fact made by the respondent public officials. 6770. the law and existing jurisprudence. except the Supreme Court on pure question of law. On this point. the Ombudsman Act of 1989. on pure question of law. therefore. Petitioner now comes to us by way of the instant Petition for Certiorari. Finally. obviously he has the duty to liquidate the said cash advance." A thorough examination of the questioned Order and Resolution of the Office of the Ombudsman and the records of the case reveal that the findings of fact made by the Ombudsman are supported by substantial evidence on record. the inclusion and joiner of respondent Emma Censon had no legal justification. However. .00 for their own personal use.190. On the face of the said cash voucher.believable. There is no question that respondent Edgard Sta. public respondent states that the allegation of conspiracy had not been fully substantiated and thus. 1992. and that respondents are probably guilty thereof. 0-93-2579 when in the conduct of the preliminary investigation Respondents biasely (sic) disregarded the evidence in the record which clearly established a prima facie case of malversation as supported by the facts. certified as to the availability of funds by the Finance Officer and the check prepared by the Cashier. provides that "(n)o court shall hear any appeal or application for remedy against the decision or findings of the Ombudsman.73.790. At the outset. complainant’s Annex "B" which is a general ledger of account.40 was diverted to Paglabas Pipeline Extension.000. disclose that the amount of P16. Maria. it must be stressed that any appeal or application for remedy against a decision or finding of the Office of the Ombudsman may only be entertained by the Supreme Court. Sppedä jo Petitioner’s main contention in its complaint before the Office of the Ombudsman is that private respondents conspired with each other in withdrawing the amount of P33. to the participation of respondent Emma Censon it is very clear that she has nothing to do with the cash advance of P33. we note with approval the following pronouncement of the Office of the Ombudsman: "After a meticulous examination of the records of the case." Moreover.

that the amount of P16. the arguments in support thereof. together with the cashier. petitioner." The same was signed by a certain civil engineer Ricardo Reyes.000. It cannot be said therefore. The public respondent’s act of dismissing the complaint against herein private respondents is neither whimsical or capricious.40 was duly receipted by the Filacon Enterprises for the amount of 4 rolls of P. In fact. Maria’s duty to liquidate or account for the said cash advance. . Tubing (32 pieces) 1 x 100 cm.40 was misappropriated by respondent Sta. nonetheless. Complainant’s claim that Ricardo Reyes is a fictitious person is based on the certification from the Local Water Utilities Administration that he is not an employee therein.S. the functions of the Court will be grievously hampered by innumerable petitions assailing the dismissal of investigatory proceedings conducted by the Office of the Ombudsman with regard to complaints filed before it.[18] Despite a clear showing that the issues involved in the instant petition are factual. Such fact virtually dispels any allegation that arbitrariness or abuse of discretion attended the resolution of petitioner’s complaint." [17] The above-quoted portion of the questioned resolution clearly shows that the findings of the Office of the Ombudsman regarding the liability of private respondents are supported by substantial evidence. as well as the comments of the respondents thereon and the reply thereto and we find that the petition fails to show a grave abuse of discretion or any act without or in excess of jurisdiction on the part of private respondents. Such factual findings of the Office of the Ombudsman deserve due respect from the Supreme Court and should not be disturbed on appeal. the complaint of petitioner was taken up by the Office of the Ombudsman in two extended discussions. there also appears a reimbursement expense receipt which is attached by the complainant as its Annex "D.00 which allegedly was pocketed by respondent instead of using the same in payment in payment of the design for the Wawa project. The conclusion that the amounts allegedly malversed by private respondents were actually liquidated by them finds support not only in the evidence of private respondents but even in the evidence submitted by petitioner in its complaint.790.790. Hence. The latter attested that he received the amount as partial payment for the design.[19] The rule is based not only upon respect for the investigatory and prosecutory powers granted by the Constitution to the Office of the Ombudsman but upon practicality as well. as there was no representation of said fact in the reimbursement receipt. Miso Going back to respondent Sta.in the same manner that they affixed signatures on the cash voucher. invokes the power of the court to reverse the decision of the Ombudsman by alleging that the Office of the Ombudsman acted with grave abuse of discretion and authority. As to the remaining balance of P15. The reimbursement expense receipt did not however state that Engineer Ricardo Reyes is an employee of LWUA. Otherwise. the certification of said agency will not be conclusive evidence of Ricardo Reyes being a fictitious person. Maria for his personal benefit. The act of the Ombudsman is dismissing the complaint is an exercise of the Ombudsman’s powers based upon constitutional mandate and the courts should not interfere with such exercise. Petitioner claims that the public respondents acted arbitrarily and whimsically in disregarding the evidence on record which allegedly clearly show a prima facie case for malversation. the evidence of complainant also shows that the P16. Nexâ old We have closely examined the issues raised in the present petition.

Bautista for Plaintiff. Labrador. The motion to quash is based on the alleged failure of the information to allege facts sufficient to constitute a cause of action. J. . Saberon. vs. the instant case involves a violation of Article 217 of the Revised Penal Code for malversation of public funds and property which is entirely separate and distinct from Article 218. 3019. vs. malversation. in the case of Nizurtado vs. Citing the case of U.A. 1994 and the Order dated May 27. the instant petition is DISMISSED. is not an element of. Liwag and Solicitor Jose G. we cannot say that the Ombudsman committed grave abuse of discretion so as to call for the exercise of our supervisory powers over him. The Saberon case is not applicable as it deals with a violation of Article 218 of the Revised Penal Code for failure of accountable officers to render accounts. Maniâ kx There is merit in petitioner’s contention although his reliance on the cited case is misplaced. The Resolution dated March 28. The demand itself.S. that the decision will not be overturned. however. Office of the Solicitor General Juan R. Lancanan for appellee. On the other hand. the Office of the ombudsman dismissed the complaint as it found that there was no sufficient evidence to establish probable cause against private respondents for malversation or violation of R.[22] the Court stated in this regard that "(d)emand merely raises a prima facie presumption that missing funds have been put to personal use. Tolentino[21] which held that previous demand is not necessary for violation of article 217 in spite of the last paragraph of the said provision. Valeriano C. No." Maniksâ Be that as it may. this is still no reason to overturn the assailed Order and Resolution of the Office of the Ombudsman. In dismissing the complaint of petitioner. defendant-appellee. Petitioner likewise contends that the Office of the Ombudsman erred in stating that demand from the Commission on Audit to settle or liquidate the amount is needed before a case for malversation can mature. This court is not a trier of facts. L-6805 THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. plaintiff-appellant. Manikanä G. dismissing an information on a motion to quash. [20] the petitioner argues that demand need not be made by the Commission on Audit as it is sufficient that there is a law or regulation requiring the public officer to render an accounting. 1994 of the Office of the Ombudsman are hereby AFFIRMED.R. SO ORDERED. The last paragraph of article 217 provides only for a rule of procedural law. More recently. In sum. Petitioner should have cited the case of People vs. and not indispensable to constitute.: This is an appeal from an order of the Court of First Instance of Samar. As long as there is substantial evidence in support of the Ombudsman’s decision. The holding of the Office of the Ombudsman that no demand was made by the Commission on Audit is not the main reason why petitioner’s complaint was dismissed. the order and the Resolution of the Ombudsman are based on substantial evidence. As stated previously. Sandiganbayan. premises considered.One final point. [23] WHEREFORE. PEDRO LANCANAN.

there is no reason for denying admission of the other. 2580 was filed on December 19. 1951. they certainly fall within the spirit and principle contained in People vs. are apparent from the record and these facts are not denied by the provincial fiscal. The motion to quash alleged: The original complaint for Illegal Possession of Firearms in Criminal Case No. We find no difference between facts merely admitted and undeniable facts appearing on the record of a case. 1951. ’51. Though they may not constitute admissions on the part of the fiscal. 1951 when these six persons were allegedly released by the accused. being then the Chief of Police … and while entrusted with the custody or charge and vigilance of (name of persons detained). 516. as a matter of fact the following note was placed on the complaint RECEIVED AND FILED THIS 12TH DAY OF NOV. which . 1951 although the six accused were arrested without warrant on November 12. 1951 … the above-named accused. but nowhere does it appear that the municipal mayor made a preliminary investigation. 75 Phil. 1951. but on the claim that the persons released were not yet charged with any valid complaint on November 13. there was no pending charge against them. who were detention prisoners …. but which go to the merits of the case. The first error imputed to the trial court is its consideration of facts not alleged in the information.The principal allegations of the information which originated this criminal case are: That on or about the 13th day of November. If one is allowed. under which appeared the signature of the justice of the peace. The court a quo examined the records of the case and found that on November 12. the following note appeared RECEIVED AND REFILED THIS 19TH DAY OF DECEMBER. There were affidavits attached to the complaint. The provincial fiscal opposed the motion to quash. The facts. so their release was made when they were not yet prisoners detained by a court order – facts which do not appear in the information. Navarro. The fact therefore is clear that on November 13. it would be idle ceremony to return the case to the trial court for trial at which the same facts of record will have to be introduced. but no signature appears on the typewritten name of the justice of the peace below the note. the complaint was sworn to before the municipal mayor. then and there willfully. It seems more in accord with expendiency for us to overlook the technical irregularity that the trial court is claimed to have committed. 1951. unlawfully and feloniously consent to the escape of said prisoners and evade detention by releasing them without the order of the court … . On the basis of the above facts and findings the trial court held that “the herein accused Pedro C. It was to be presented to the Justice of the Peace. Lancanan has not committed the crime of infidelity in the custody of the prisoners …” and ordered the dismissal of the case. or issued a warrant for the arrest of the accused therein. As the facts are clear and not susceptible of contradiction. Below the above note. also dated November 12. however. 1951 at about 9:30 in the evening. but the latter was absent. alleging that it is not predicated on the insufficiency of the facts alleged.

MORAN. the crime of infidelity in the custody of public documents is committed. destruction or concealment of public documents is punished by law only when any of such acts would constitute infidelity in the custody thereof. because the act of removal.Whether during or after office hours.: chanrobles virtual law library 1. Reyes. which was not carried out because the official before whom it was to be presented for filing was absent. Padilla. he should have signed the above note. 1951 with the typewritten name of the justice of the peace. and proceed to determine the validity of the order of the court on the basis of the facts found in the record. No. For the foregoing reasons. Respondent. This is so. is no reason why we may conclude that it was filed previously. 1951 is borne out by the record and is correct. Bengzon. or to do in connection therewith an act which would constitute a breach of trust in his official care thereof. L-48398 November 28. also without merit. Jugo. or with a view to securing them from imminent danger of loss.J. there would be no crime committed under the law..irregularity we do not here admit to exist because it was sanctioned by us in the case of Navarro. C. EN BANC G. If the mayor had intended to receive it for filing. JJ. A. The alleged error imputed to the trial court for dismissing the complaint is. Paras. therefore. There was. Pablo. Several circumstances are set out in the body of the decision to show . On the other hand. i. Bautista Angelo and Concepcion. CRIMINAL LAW. concur. The claim that the court acted improperly in the consideration of the motion to quash must be dismissed. J.. KATANIAG. if the removal by a public officer of any official document from its usual place of safe-keeping is for an illicit purpose. . no provision of the rules authorizes him to act for and on behalf of the justice of the peace in the acceptance of complaints for filing. shows that the complaint was merely intended to be filed with said official. as when the public officer removes the public documents committed to his trust for examination in connection with official duty. And swearing a complaint before a municipal mayor is no filing either. such as to tamper with or to otherwise profit by it. but without his signature. the order appealed from is hereby confirmed. e. therefore. INFIDELITY IN THE CUSTODY OF PUBLIC DOCUMENTS. An attempt to file. Without costs. Petitioner. merely an attempt and intent to file it with the justice of the peace. Montemayor. which attempt was not carried out because the justice of the peace was absent. vs. The conclusion of the trial court that the case was not filed until December 19. The fact also that the justice of the peace on December 19. can not be confused with actual filing. on November 12. THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. The note RECEIVED AND FILED THIS 12TH DAY OF NOV. where the act of removal is actuated with lawful or commendable motives.R. 1942 MELCHOR V.. 1951 may have believed that on that day the complaint was being refiled. ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS. supra. rather than remand the case to the trial court. The latter official is not a clerk or officer of the court.

vs. G. SANDIGANBAYAN (Second Division) and the PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. "or" may read "and" and vice versa. The law punishes "any public officer who shall remove. And. the removal for illicit purposes by petitioner of the documents in question from their usual place of safekeeping against the strictest surveillance ordered buy the higher authorities and in the midst of the immigration scandal when the probe was in full swing. it being immaterial whether he has or has not actually accomplished moved said documents. destruction and concealment must be viewed as distinct modes of committing the offense. CRIME COMMITTED IS CONSUMMATED AND NOT MERELY ATTEMPTED. True. In the instant case. in the ordinary usage.. Amado A. but as he had already succeeded in removing or secreting away the documents in question from his office. signifies dissociation and independence of one thing from each of the other things mentioned.R. ID. Such effect constitutes damage to public interest. at the moment of his arrest the records he was caught carrying with him were intact. 89043-65 July 16.. 2073-2095 and 33233345 insofar as it finds petitioner Jose R." (Art. ID. But an actual damage need not necessarily be pecuniary or material.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library 4. J.. for he was caught carrying them after he had locked the door of his office and was already out walking through the lobby towards the main door of the building. REMOVAL NEED NOT BE COUPLED WITH PROOF OF INTENTION TO CONCEAL.. ID.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library 2.removal.. and such damage is. ID. Accordingly. it is true that such damage must be actual and not hypothetical. respondents. 1990 JOSE R. the crime of removal of public documents summated.. No. in the instant case. Caballero for petitioner. ID. there is nothing in the context of the law which would require the giving to the conjunction "or" a meaning different from its ordinary usage. CORTES.Upon the matter of damage to public interest or to third party. ID. as defined .. .: This is a petition to review the decision of the Second Division of the Sandiganbayan in Crim Cases Nos. 226. it is not necessary that the act of removal must be coupled with proof of intention to conceal. . DAMAGE TO PUBLIC INTEREST OR TO THIRD PARTY. STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION. VELOSO. unquestionably a serious one.To warrant a finding of guilt of infidelity in the custody of public documents.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library 3.) The word "or" is a disjunctive conjunction which. petitioner.. Revised Penal Code. . Veloso guilty as coprincipal in the complex crimes of Estafa thru Falsification of Public Documents. destroy or conceal documents or papers officially entrusted to him. under the circumstances stated.Petitioner has committed not merely the attempted but the consummated crime of infidelity in the custody of public documents. ID. aside from the necessity of maintaining the integrity of public records. While in the interpretation of statutes. it is so only when the context so requires. ID. It may consists in mere alarm to the public or in the allienation of its confidence in any branch of the government service. constitutes such a perversity of officials.conclusively that in the instant case there has been a removal effected for illicit purposes.

Engracia Escobar. Those found guilty filed separate motions for reconsideration but these were denied by the Sandiganbayan.and penalized under Article 318 Revised Penal Code. Monte. 33233345 [Decision. Central Office. Senior Civil Engineer. Senior Civil Engineer. of the 7th Highway Regional Office in Cebu City. Supervising Accounting Clerk. Machan. Cases Nos. the following officials and employees of the Ministry of Public Highways Central Office. Veloso. Jose Sayson. Auditing Examiner. Mananquil. Wilfredo Monte.] Petitioner. as minimum. de la Pena Eugenio S. 37-38. two (2) months and one (1) day of prision correccional. Manloloyo. Budget Examiner. Regino Junawan Arsenio Pakilit Juan Sumagang. Chief Accountant and Leonardo Tordecilla. together with accused Mangubat. Josefina Luna. Cases Nos. Manloloyo. Pakilit Arcamo. Cresencia L. as maximum. Mananquil. of the Department of Public Works and Highways.500. Aurelio M. and (2) Manuel de Veyra. Property Custodian. Chief Regional Accountant and Regional Finance Officer. Abelardo Cardona. Basilisa Galwan Budget Officer.207.60) through the illegal and unauthorized issuance of fake Letters of Advice of Allotments and Cash Disbursement Ceilings and the tampering and falsifications of General Vouchers and supporting documents. Machan Tan. Juliana de los Angeles and Manuel Mascardo. VII and the Siquijor Highway Engineering District. in Crim.2 in relation to Article 48. Francisco Ganhinhin and Urbano Arcamo. Finance and Management Service. to ten (10) years of prision mayor. Accountant I. of the Department of Public Works and Highways. . Cebu City. Isaac T. were charged with forty-six (46) counts of Estafa thru Falsification of Public Documents: (1) Rolando Mangubat. Zosimo S. respectively.Two Thousand Two Hundred Seven Pesos and Sixty Centavos (P982. together with contractors Clodualdo Gomilla. pp. Administrative Officer. Chief Accountant. Angelina Escano. Veloso. Supervising Accountant. Petitioner does not dispute the finding that there were anomalies in the Siquijor Highway Engineering District (SHED) Neither does he dispute the existence of a conspiracy between the suppliers and certain government officials and employees. Crewman and Auditing Aide respectively. but shall limit ourselves to the issue of whether or not petitioner's participation in the criminal conspiracy has been established beyond reasonable doubt. Cases Nos. Highway District Engineer II. Thus. Kilat Jumawan. de la Peña Dinsay. Trinidad T. What he vehemently denies is the Sandiganbayan's finding that he was a conspirator.00) in each case and to indemnify the government in amounts varying from case to case. Regional Office No. Matilde Jabalde. Rollo. Manila. Region VII. pp. Auditing Aide Auditor. for purposes of this petition we will no longer inquire into whether or not the offenses charged were in fact committed. Accountant II. paragraph 4. Leonila del Rosario. Asst. 2073-2095) to suffer imprisonment of from four (4) years. Tan. 7-8. this petition by Jose R. Dinsay. Ediltrudes Kilat Jose R. to pay a fine of One Thousand Five Hundred Pesos (P1. Assistant Highway District Engineer. 1 and 171. Thus. 3 of the The nature of the cases filed before the Sandiganbayan was as follows: For defrauding the Government in the amount of Nine Hundred Eighty. Regional Director. 20732095. Sumagang and Gomilla were found guilty as co-principals and sentenced in each of twenty-three (23) cases (Crim. Ganhinhin. of the Siquijor Highway Engineering District (SHED) in Crim. the Civil Engineer. Chief.

Rollo. "to avoid action. in relation to COA Circular No. Under COA Circular No. 83. based on the foregoing. Thus.00. (2) illegal funding. he claims that the vouchers would have been cleared even without his signature as they were supported by the required documents and certifications.participation in the conspiracy and his good faith in attaching his signature to the documents involved. while he admits that he signed the general vouchers. the district officials herein resorted to the splitting of the RSEs. respectively. Consequently. 105-106. as District Auditor. December 21 and December 23. p. (4) fictitious deliveries and inspection. 1977. underscoring in the original. the Court considers such "splitting" as an integral and/or essential element or link in the conspiracy to defraud the Government inasmuch as such practices was (sic) consciously and deliberately resorted to in order to hide the massive and stupefying misappropriations being undertaken by the accused herein. Military Areas and Zones outside Metropolitan Manila. Consequently. of which the Court takes judicial notice. one of the accused herein. State Colleges and Universities. pp. He contends that it has not been shown that he falsified any of the documents which the Sandiganbayan found to be falsifications. [Decision. Said LAA evolved into three (3) separate transactions involving the amounts of P48. instead of (SHED) resident auditor Jose Veloso. pre-audit and approval of all the general vouchers and checks in question.480. dated July 30. 1976.000. 1976. pre-audited and approved by the Regional Auditor of the COA. review or approval by higher authorities".00 and P48. He continues that he could not question the veracity of the prepared Letters of Advice of Allotments (LAA) and Sub-Advices of Cash Disbursement Ceiling (SACDC) since these documents.60 as evidenced by three GVs dated December 21.00 in each case" (Emphasis supplied). as well as other Auditors 3 for District/City Highway.000. then the GVs and supporting papers may be found to be the result of (1) inexistent programs of work. 76-41. Thus. 76-41. POs and the GVs involved in the fake LAA dated October 6. if such transactions were to be reviewed and pre-audited by the Regional (COA) Auditor.480. based on irregular or fake supporting papers. 16-16A. p. in the very wording of COA Circular No. it is provided that "Resident Auditors of bureaus.] The Sandiganbayan described the details of the "splitting" resorted to as follows: Fifthly.00 must have to be processed. dated February 10.000.00. and engaged in "splitting.189. 113. alleging his non. Rollo." so that he would be the one to pass the vouchers in audit when such should have been forwarded to the Commission on Audit (COA) Regional Auditor for action or review. . Thus. The graft court found that he also signed and passed in audit the vouchers and checks knowing that these were illegally funded and improperly charged to "Fund 81-400" (the prior year's obligations). gave him the go-signal to pass them in audit. he claims that his act of doing so was merely ministerial considering that all the supporting papers and documents were submitted and attached to the vouchers.The Sandiganbayan found that petitioner's liability. are authorized to countersign checks and warrants in amounts not exceeding P50. 1977 in the amount of P200. all GVs in amounts exceeding P50. Otherwise. (3) irregular or non-existent bidding. pp. Public Works/School. [Decision. and other anomalies. the Court finds that the accused district officials resorted to "splitting" of RSEs. emanated from his irregular and improper processing. P48. 75-76. who might be averse to joining the conspiracy. offices and agencies of the National Government in Metropolitan Manila. with the program of work accompanying them and other inspection reports. But petitioner vigorously argues his innocence. POs (Purchase Orders) and GVs in order to avoid review or approval by higher authorities.

85-86. emphasis supplied] Clearly. the unauthorized and/or improper action by officials on the supporting documents. business standing and signatures were only utilized. pp. This is simplified by several circumstances patent on said documents. since by the very nature of their duties. petitioner would be serving no useful purpose in occupying his position of resident auditor. supported by similarly irregularly issued documents. he turned a blind eye and signed the documents. as their superior. 2 SCRA 388. In these cases. Rollo. vouchers that were patently irregular. He can not rely on the excuse that his subordinates have already initialed the documents for his signature because his function. xxx xxx xxx [Decision. People v. Cadag. 115-116. to wit. with their whole-hearted cooperation. as resident auditor of the SHED was tasked with ensuring the regularity of all transactions that are subject to his review. the existence of a conspiracy and a conspirator's participation may be established through circumstantial evidence [ Ibid. he had before him.This argument cannot be given much weight. for his signature. May 31. Romualdez. and the splitting of payments. in seeking the consummation of their plans to defraud the government. they should have known or realized by mere scrutiny of the documents or by the exercise of ordinary diligence that there were irregularities or anomalies reflected on their very faces. 57 Phil. Neither can the accused-contractors claim good faith likewise and reliance on the actuations of their co-accused public officials since they knew fully well that their participation in the transactions under question were only make believe or a farce and that their names. It is well-settled that there need not be direct evidence of the existence and details of the conspiracy [People v. The number of transactions in which petitioner is involved and the magnitude of the amount involved also prevent a reasonable mind from accepting the proposition that petitioner was merely careless or negligent in the performance of his functions He passed in audit twentyfour (24) general vouchers which resulted in the issuance of twenty-three (23) checks amounting to Nine Hundred Eighty-Two Thousand Two Hundred Seven Pesos and Sixty . pp. G. L-13830. as he was duty bound to do. petitioner's participation in the conspiracy to defraud the Government has been established beyond reasonable doubt. Otherwise. completing the process that led to the consummation of the crime. It has already been rejected by the Sandiganbayan in this wise: xxx xxx xxx None of the accused regional and district officials can claim good faith or reliance on the regularity of the documents processed and signed by them or on the presumption that their subordinates and/or superiors have acted regularly.] Like the guilt of the individual offender. is to check on their work and to ensure that they do it correctly. which related not only to one but to several transactions. Instead of refusing to affix his signature and reporting the irregularities to his superiors. 1961. 148 (1932). No. which he should not have passed in audit. if his signature was a superfluity. given his acts and omissions in auditing the documents. the lack or incompleteness of supporting documents.] Petitioner.R. the irregular funding of the LAAs the improper charging to prior year's obligations.

Sicat. Sarmiento. (3) Johnny Wilson. Gutierrez. Fernan (C. originally for mandamus filed by Jose C. both of the Court of First Instance of Rizal.207. is AFFIRMED. Yap and Associates and Amelito Mutuc for petitioner. Mayor Maximo B. it may be that petitioner has already been administratively penalized for his malfeasance. Finally..: The petition now before us. THE HONORABLE JUDGES DELFIN B. J. the following were declared elected municipal officials of Makati. both of the Province of Rizal. SANCHEZ. Luciano. Councilor of Makati.). SO ORDERED. Bidin. vs. 1969 JOSE C. (4) . IGNACIO BABASA and BERNARDO NONATO. Province of Rizal. LUCIANO. Rizal. Mariano.. In sum. petitioner. as in fact he was suspended for one (1) year without pay [Annex "A" of the Reply. PEDRO ISON.200]. Administrative liability is separate and distinct from penal liability. Cruz. 1967.R. Salonga. Judges Delfin B. Paras. Councilors (1) Jose C. and/or THE PROVINCIAL BOARD. Medialdea and Regalado JJ. No. (2) Justino Ventura. L-30306 June 20. and the decision of the Sandiganbayan. MARIANO. because said judges and the Court of Appeals have restrained or enjoined the suspension of Mayor Estrella and others. concur G. Luciano. Rizal and. but such will not bar his conviction under the general penal laws. Padilla. Province of Rizal. further expanded to add a prayer for injunction against newly named party respondents. both of the Court of First Instance of Rizal. respondents. Flores and Herminio C. THE PROVINCIAL GOVERNOR. Rollo. Jr. WHEREFORE. who received the highest number of votes in the last general elections of 1967. the irregularities were not of the kind that could have gone unnoticed by the trained eyes of an auditor. Gancayco. all of the Municipality of Makati. Melencio-Herrera. COUNCILORS JUSTINO VENTURA.60). insofar as it relates to petitioner. the petition is hereby DENIED.Centavos (P982. 189. FLORES and HERMINIO C. Narvasa. thereafter. It may be well to state right at the outset that the issues herein may not perhaps be properly understood unless the necessary facts are presented in their peculiar setting.i•t•c-aüsl Moreover. to compel the Provincial Governor and/or the Provincial Board of Rizal under Section 13 of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act to suspend Makati Mayor Maximo Estrella and others. MAYOR MAXIMO ESTRELLA. Feliciano. Vice-Mayor Teotimo Gealogo. pp. thus: In the general elections of November 14. VICE-MAYOR TEOTIMO GEALOGO. Griño-Aquino. no reversible error was committed by the Sandiganbayan in adjudging petitioner guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime charged. Estrella. and the Court of Appeals. Neptali Gonzales for respondents.J. soon branched out to include quo warranto to have petitioner declared to be entitled to act as Mayor of Makati. and THE HONORABLE COURT of APPEALS. Ordoñez.

Babasa. First Assistant Provincial Fiscal B. in turn. January 31. Pedro Ison. 1969. Judge Flores replaced the restraining order with another for the issuance of a writ of preliminary injunction in favor of herein respondent municipal officials upon a P5. on March 18. unlawfully entered into a contract with JEF Enterprises for delivery and installation of 59 traffic deflectors valued at P1. as stated at the start of this opinion. February 26.00. 1 Councilor of Makati and as a private citizen residing in Makati. with others. 1969. Ignacio Babasa. 34 units thereof having been delivered. were convicted. The dispositive portion of the decision material to the present case reads: IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING. Nonato. (7) Juan E. respondent elective municipal officials of Makati registered an injunction suit — Civil Case 11593 — in the Court of First Instance of Rizal. Hon. Subsequently. (6) Ignacio C. Vice-Mayor Teotimo Gealogo. respondent Judge Delfin B. On February 27. on April 26.000-bond. the Secretary of Justice rendered the opinion sought declaring that under Section 13 of Republic Act 3019. otherwise known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Flores issued ex-parte in said Civil Case 11593 a restraining order directing the Provincial Governor "to refrain or desist from suspending" respondent municipal officials. Juan Ponce Enrile.841. The Secretary's opinion was. to prevent the latter from suspending them. 1969. Ignacio . On that same day. in his capacity as No. On January 18. Ison (5) Bernardo P. 1967. the Provincial Governor requested the Provincial Fiscal for legal advice as to whether Mayor Estrella and other municipal officials charged were to be suspended by him or not.426. such contract being manifestly and grossly disadvantageous to the municipal government of Makati and to the latter's prejudice. conspiring and confederating together. less 10% which was retained. 1969. and 8) Cesar C.50 each. on or about July 26. and Bernardo Nonato (respondent elective municipal officials) and others. Pedro Ison. installed and paid for in the total amount of P48. Judge Andres Reyes rendered judgment in Criminal Case 18821 earlier adverted to. 3 Justino Ventura. it was the mandatory duty of the Provincial Governor to suspend Mayor Estrella and the other elective municipal officials who were prosecuted with the latter.Pedro P. L29755. Because of the pendency of the foregoing case. 2 Averment was there made. the Court finds the accused Mayor Maximo Estrella and the Councilors Teotimo Gealogo. for violation of Sections 3-G and 4-B of Republic Act 3019. No. for guidance. Castillo (G. that the suspension threatened by the Governor before the final determination of the criminal case and/or administrative charge against plaintiffs therein was violative of constitutional due process and that the power of preventive suspension is now vested exclusively in the Provincial Board pursuant to Section 5 of the Decentralization Act of 1967 and in line with our decision inSarcos vs. 1 The criminal information therefor substantially charged that. petitioner. The Provincial Fiscal. pending final judgment in Criminal Case 18821. asked the Secretary of Justice. 26 SCRA 853. on March 25. on May 17. on February 26. Then. Alzona. forwarded by the Fiscal to the Governor. Tengco. In the meanwhile. 1969. amongst others. On February 12. Councilors Justino Ventura. 1969. commenced the present mandamus proceedings in this Court. Herein respondent municipal officials. 1969). 1969.R. Jose Castillo instituted Criminal Case 18821 in the Court of First Instance of Rizal against Makati Mayor Maximo Estrella. against the Provincial Governor. Mayor Estrella and his co-accused. the mandamus petition was amended to include quo warranto as another cause of action and to implead respondent local officials of Makati.

sheriffs and other agents and men with the threat of using force and violence. Vice-Mayor and Councilors within the 24-hour period as directed by the decision of Judge Reyes because they could not be located and because he (the sheriff) was served with a temporary restraining order emanating this time from respondent Judge Herminio C. Mayor Estrella and his Secretary. In view thereof. Francisco. that such forcible assumption was improper and contrary to law because there was no vacancy to be filled. Bernardo Nonato. it was the Provincial Governor who could fill up the vacancy by appointment. Luciano. sheriffs. and that petitioner Luciano also threatened to dismiss therein petitioner Ciriaco Alano. Province of Rizal.nêt Per the Sheriff's return and supplemental return. there is more reason to remove them after a judgment of conviction. the same accused are hereby perpetually disqualified to hold office. Teotimo Gealogo.1awphil. the Provincial Sheriff of Rizal is hereby ordered to remove said accused. namely: Maximo Estrella. Gualberto San Pedro. Pedro Ison. for a public official who has violated his oath of office by committing graft and corrupt practices should not stay in office even for a single minute until he is cleared of those charges. After all. Lutgardo Ambrosio. If the accused should be suspended upon the filing of the information. 1969. they appealed to the Court of Appeals on the same day that the decision was promulgated. Judge Herminio C. 1969 and directed as follows — In the meantime. Ciriaco Alano. the Municipal Treasurer Eduardo S. and in order to maintain the status quo. they are entitled to reinstatement and all the benefits attached to their office during suspension. Petitioners. Upon the foregoing allegations. Mariano of the same Court of First Instance of Rizal. filed in the Court of First Instance of Rizal (Civil Case 11802. agents. paragraph G of Republic Act 3019 otherwise known as Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Ignacio Babasa. Respondent") what appears to be a case for injunction with prayer for preliminary injunction against petitioner Jose C. and all persons acting for and in their behalf. are hereby temporarily restrained from . that in view of the appeal. the post of Mayor in the company of Philippine Constabulary soldiers. Jose San Mateo and Lutgardo Ambrosio. The petition averred inter alia that although the decision of Judge Reyes ordered the removal from office of Mayor Estrella and his other co-accused within 24 hours after receipt of the decision. the Provincial Auditor Gualberto San Pedro. that said appeal notwithstanding.Babasa and Bernardo Nonato. as charged in the Information. from office immediately and to furnish the Court a return hereof within twenty-four (24) hours upon receipt of a copy of this decision. the Chief of Police Jose San Mateo and the Chief of the Traffic Control Bureau. to stop the latter from assuming the post of Mayor. and even if there was. Mariano set the hearing for preliminary injunction for May 27. 13 of R. he was unable to implement the order of "removal" of the accused Mayor. No.A. Francisco. respondent Jose Luciano and any and all Philippine Constabulary officers and soldiers. and sentences each of them to suffer imprisonment for a period of SIX (6) YEARS. entitled "Ciriaco Alano and Maximo Estrella. said decision had not become final and executory and could not be executed in any way. Sec. Eduardo S. guilty beyond reasonable doubt. all of the municipality of Makati. The temporary restraining order last mentioned came about in this manner: On May 20. of violating Section 3. 3019 states that the accused shall be suspended from office upon the filing of the Information. May 20. versus Jose Luciano. Justino Ventura. In addition to this. petitioner Luciano had publicly announced that he would assume on that day. The law is wise. if eventually they are exonerated.

standing and right to prosecute this case. "said decision has not become final and executory and its executory or enforcement has been and is stayed".performing the acts sought to be enjoined. until further orders from this Court. to stop the latter two in their attempt to enforce the removal order contained in the decision of Case 18821. petitioner Luciano filed before this Court in the present case a motion for preliminary mandatory injunction to order the Provincial Governor and/or Provincial Board to immediately suspend respondent elective municipal officials of Makati and to either install petitioner or recognize his right as Acting Mayor pending final determination of this case. from molesting or impeding them in the performance of their duties in any way. the Court of Appeals superseded the foregoing temporary restraining order with an order for the issuance of the writ of preliminary injunction upon a P1. and that respondent Judge Reyes threatened to cancel the bail bonds of therein petitioners and cause their arrest. the Court of Appeals issued a temporary restraining order against therein respondents. 1969. Luciano. allegedly in aid of the latter's appellate jurisdiction in Criminal Case 18821. from removing or attempting to remove. in any mode or manner." Ground for this assertion is the fact that on May 30. on May 20. that. paragraphs (a) and (e). to wit. you are hereby ORDERED. 4 It was there alleged.000-cash bond. the petitioners and defendants in Criminal. that therein respondent Salaysay had been directed by Judge Reyes to continue to enforce and execute his decision of "removal". jointly and separately. On May 21. in view of therein petitioners' appeal. Case No. 18821 of the Court of respondent judge. respondent municipal officials of Makati moved to dismiss the present case on the ground that petitioner Luciano had "lost any and all personality. prohibition and mandamus with prayer for preliminary injunction against Judge Andres Reyes and Provincial Sheriff Nicanor Salaysay. until further orders from this Court. On May 27. 1969 — the very same day that respondent Estrella and his secretary presented in the Court of First Instance of Rizal Civil Case 11802 just mentioned — Estrella and the other respondent municipal officials of Makati went to the Court of Appeals. Rizal Provincial Fiscal Benjamin H. filed a reamended petition with preliminary mandatory and prohibitory injunction which also took in as respondents Judges Flores and Mariano and the Court of Appeals. as stated earlier. Aquino. Meantime. or if the bail bonds have already been cancelled by respondent Judge. On June 5. to re-instate the said bail bonds and desist from arresting the petitioners or any of them. Case No. The May 27 hearing was held but Civil Case 11802 was ordered dismissed by Judge Mariano upon joint petition of the parties. On May 22. Republic Act 3019. to desist from executing or enforcing the Decision in Crim. On June 6. upon a P1. on May 21. In a separate development. 1969.000-bond. amongst others. 18821 from their respective offices. on certiorari. 1969 (Criminal Case 19346) charging herein petitioner with violation of Section 3. and from installing or placing respondent Luciano or any other persons in their offices in any way. 1969. 1969. Luciano amended the motion to include respondent Judges Flores and Mariano. 1969. now Judge of First Instance. 5 . after hearing. from cancelling the bail bonds of the petitioners and thereafter ordering their arrest. the pertinent part of which reads as follows: NOW THEREFORE. 1969. filed with the Rizal court a criminal information dated May 29.

the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (Republic Act 3019). petitioner's motion for preliminary injunction here as well as the case on the merits are now submitted for decision. One of the penalties that attach under the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. are the bane of public administration. A circumspect view leaves us unconvinced of the soundness of respondents' position. It is impermissible for us to do so. The two cases relied upon have laid down the precept that a reelected public officer is no longer amenable to administrative sanctions for acts committed during his former tenure. 1967. that said criminal information be declared invalid. is "perpetual disqualification from public office." 7 The relevance here . Here involved is a criminal prosecution under a special statute. 6 On June 5. In this context. 1. and Lizares vs. we dismissed the foregoing petition "without prejudice to petitioner's filing in the Court of First Instance of Rizal in Criminal Case 19346 an appropriate motion praying: (1) that a preliminary investigation of the said criminal case be conducted. G. everyone knows. a councilor prior thereto.Parenthetically. No. null and void. 1969. Said respondents would want to impress upon us the fact that in the last general elections of November 14. and that therein respondents Provincial Governor and Provincial Board be prohibited from suspending petitioner on the basis of the information aforesaid. A cursory look at Republic Act 3019 leads one to conclude that it makes no time distinctions. 1967. Hechanova. except the Vice-Mayor Teotimo Gealogo. The law does not distinguish. 466. 17 SCRA 58. it must be noted. 1969 criminal information (Criminal Case 19346). The first problem we are to grapple with is the legal effect of the reelection of respondent municipal officials. to repress certain acts of public officers and private persons alike which constitute graft or corrupt practices or which may lead thereto." Implicit in the foregoing lines is congressional respect for the sacredness of a public office which must be kept clear of grafting and corrupting officials who. or prior to the 1967 elections. 1967 the Makati electorate reelected all of them. Provincial Board of Nueva Ecija. More specifically. L-30544. and (2) that the proceedings in the criminal case aforesaid be suspended pending the resolution of said motion and the result of the preliminary investigation. for prohibition with preliminary injunction praying that therein respondent Rizal Provincial Fiscal Aquino be prohibited from filing and causing to be docketed. 1969. 106 Phil. and hearing having been concluded. we cannot draw a line between acts done during a former term of office of a particular public officer and acts done during a later term. the May 29. But the present case rests on an entirely different factual and legal setting. They ground their position on Pascual vs." The returns having been filed. And more.R. petitioner Luciano lodged a new and separate petition before this Court. Section 1 of said Act reads: "It is the policy of the Philippine Government. heavy compulsion there is for us to say that the Act's statement of policy clearly points the other way. it is immaterial when a repressible act is committed by a public officer. that the Court of First Instant of Rizal be prohibited from accepting and/or giving due course to that information and ordering petitioner's arrest. Indeed. It is to be recalled that the acts averred in the criminal information in Criminal Case 18821 and for which they were convicted allegedly occurred on or about July 26. These respondents contend that their reelection erected a bar to their removal from office for misconduct committed prior to November 14. in line with the principle that a public office is a public trust. on June 3. We are not here confronted with administrative charges to which the two cited cases refer. was elevated to vice-mayor.

" It does not say "is suspended" or "is deemed suspended. therefore. but if he is acquitted. he shall be entitled to reinstatement and to the salaries and benefits which he failed to receive during suspension. This circumstance militates strongly against the notion that suspension is automatic. 2. no crime committed by him prior thereto becomes repressible even if the time marked by the statute of limitations has not yet run out. Crimes under the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act only prescribe in ten (10) years. mandatory. Proceeding from our holding that suspension is not automatic. shall be suspended from office. then. 13. — Any public officer against whom any criminal prosecution under a valid information under this Act or under the provisions of the Revised Penal Code on bribery is pending in court. For. who should exercise the mandatory act of suspension under Section 13 of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act? . unless in the meantime administrative proceedings have been filed against him. after the reelection of an official. The argument that reelection condones previous criminal acts of an elective official punishable under the anti-graft legislation makes no eminent sense. The word "shall" used in Section 13 is an express index of this conclusion. Adding strength to this view is that in line with the statutory text of Section 13.of this penalty is that it extends beyond a particular term of office. The language of the law can be no clearer. the disqualification is perpetual. Adherence to this rigoristic requirement funnels us down to no other conclusion than that there must. Said Section 13 provides: SEC. he shall lose all retirement or gratuity benefits under any law. reelection of a public official does not bar prosecution for crimes committed prior thereto by said official. Suspension is. We think it evident upon the terms of the statute that there must be someone who shall exercise the act of suspension. first of all. We stand the possibility of being confronted with the stark reality that an official may amass wealth thru graft and corrupt practices and thereafter use the same to purchase reelection and thereby launder his evil acts. however. 3. For if this were so. We. Some such notion is patently offensive to the objectives and the letter of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. It provides that any public officer charged under a valid information "shall be suspended from office. hold that under the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. What should clinch the point is the realization that normally crime is not to be condoned. 8 We. by its Section 11." It uses the word "shall". be a determination that the information filed is valid before suspension can be effected. hold that the suspension envisioned in Section 13 of Republic Act 3019 is mandatory but is not self-operative. Should he be convicted by final judgment. the suspension spoken of follows the pendency in court of a criminal prosecution under a "valid information". We next consider the question: Is the suspension mentioned in Section 13 of Republic Act 3019 automatic? A view suggested is that said suspension ipso jure results upon the filing of the criminal information without the need of an act of suspension by any superior authority. accordingly. Suspension and loss of benefits.

is encompassed in the punishment set forth in Section 9 of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act — covers that of removal from the office which each of the respondent municipal official holds." Here. It would seem to us though that suspensions by virtue of criminal proceedings are separate and distinct from suspensions in administrative cases. there is in this legal provision a recognition that once a case is filed in court. Reason for this is that suspension necessarily is included in the greater power of removal. to be "perpetually disqualified to hold office. that power of suspension must be held to repose in the Provincial Board. as it should. no amount of judicial legerdemain would deprive the court of the power to suspend. Castillo (1969). 4. Section 13 requires as a precondition of the power to suspend that there be a valid information. the Makati elective officials heretofore named have been charged with and found guilty of a violation of Section 3 (g) of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and were sentenced by the court below. we are not to say that from Congress is withheld the power to decide the mode or procedure of suspension and removal of public officers. An accurate reading of Section 13 yields two methods of investigation. defendant in an Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices case "shall be entitled to reinstatement and to the salaries and benefits which he failed to receive during suspension. 12 A look into the legislative intent. And so. It is true to say that nothing in Section 13 of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act grants with specifity upon the Court of First Instance the power to suspend an official charged with a violation thereof. Since removal from office then is within the power of the court. the court is empowered to punish any public official committing any of the unlawful acts or omissions enumerated in Sections 3. relying on Section 2188 of the Revised Administrative Code. and the other administrative. By Section 9 of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. We opt for the third. solely the court in which the criminal case has been filed shall wield the power of suspension. Common sense and the scheme of the law so dictate. by Section 13 of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Not that this view finds no statutory support.Three theories have been advanced. 5 and 6 of the law. the substantial symmetry between the first part of Section 13 and the last part thereof just quoted. amongst others. all other acts connected with the discharge of court functions — which here include suspension — should be left to the Court of First Instance." Article 30 of the Revised Penal Code declares that the penalty of perpetual absolute disqualification entails "[t]he deprivation of the public offices and employments which the offender may have held. which says that if acquitted. One is that the power of suspension — where a criminal case has already been filed in court — still is with the Provincial Governor." 10 No stretch of the imagination is necessary to show that perpetual absolute disqualification — which. the intent is there. Another is that. While the law may not be a model of precise verbal structure." 9 Our interpretation but preserves. This is the plain import of the last sentence of Section 13. The third is that. 11 It is without doubt that Congress has power to authorize courts to suspend public officers pending court proceedings for removal and that the congressional grant is not violative of the separation of powers. even if conferred by popular election. For. convinces us the more that the power of suspension should be lodged with the court. amongst others. . because the main respondents are elective municipal officials. in effect. under Section 5 of the Decentralization Act of 1967 (Republic Act 5185). 26 SCRA 853. Validity of information. along with the legislative scheme. following the ruling in Sarcos vs. unless in the meantime administrative proceedings have been filed against him. our Constitution being silent. one separate from the other: one criminal before the courts of justice. to "perpetual disqualification from public office.

Independent of the other branches of the Government. — . When Section 5 of the Decentralization Act of 1967 governing "Suspension and Removal of Elective Local Officials" — upon which the Sarcos decision was anchored — provided in its first paragraph that "[a]ny provision of law to the contrary notwithstanding. is determined by the Court of First Instance where the criminal case is pending. Were this merely a case where respondent municipal officials were subjected to administrative investigation. as we have ruled in Sarcos vs. When a member of the police force or agency is accused in court of any felony or violation of law by the city or municipal attorney or by the chief of the municipal police or the provincial or assistant provincial fiscal or city or assistant city fiscal. the city mayor or municipal mayor concerned. supra. . (b) dishonesty. supra. (c) oppression. We should rather say that if the court's power of suspension incident to the court proceedings is to be withheld or narrowed by construction. who can suspend except one who knows the facts upon which suspension is based? We draw support from Lason vs. when it said: SEC. Proof that the anti-graft legislation is outside the ambit of Section 5 of the Decentralization Act is furnished by the second. Castillo. 16. As adverted to elsewhere. and in case of acquittal. as the case may be. said Section 5 solely embraces administrative investigations. 13 Not that the view we take of the statute may be taken as an encroachment upon the power of suspension given other officials. viz. it was not meant to include suspension and removal under the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Roque. Suspension is a sequel to that finding. and (d) misconduct in the office.of course. the Provincial Board of Rizal may take a hand.. That trial and disposition of criminal cases against members of the police forces shall be accorded priority by the courts..: The grounds for suspension and removal of elective local officials are the following: (a) disloyalty to the Republic of the Philippines. shall immediately suspend the accused from office pending the final decision by the court. For. the accused shall be entitled to immediate reinstatement and the payment of the entire salary he failed to receive during his suspension: Provided. That is essentially a judicial function. an incident to the criminal proceedings before the court. the courts can well take care of their own administration of the law. the suspension and removal of elective local officials shall be governed exclusively by the provisions of this section". at page 469: "We are certain that no authority or good reason can be found in support of a proposition that the Chief Executive can suspend an officer facing criminal charges for the sole purpose of aiding the court in the administration of justice. an important legislation. however. Indeed. we would not hesitate to say that. Police Act of 1966 (Republic Act 4864). Surely. should not be artificially construed so as to exclude the courts from the power to suspend — a prime tool designed by Congress to prevent the power which an official wields from frustrating the purity and certainty of the administration of justice. It has done so in Section 16. third and penultimate paragraphs of said section. a line should be drawn between administrative proceedings and criminal action in court — one is apart from the other. we should not be pedantically exacting in reading its provisions. Congress should have spelled it out in no uncertain terms. We must have to harmonize the Decentralization Act of 1967 with the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Suspension of Members of the Police Force or Agency ." The Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

Conversely. Provided. once a valid information upon . That the decision shall not preclude the filing of criminal actionsarising from the same charges as provided for under existing laws. The hand of political oppression cannot just be ignored especially if the majority members of the Provincial Board and the defendant public local elective officer are on opposite sides of the political fence. It is thus that the statute should catch up with the realities of political life. Harassment of those belonging to opposing factions or groups is not unknown. The truism that a public office is a public trust. the suspending authority will display reluctance in exercising the power of suspension. Power may be abused. even assuming that it is tainted by ambiguity which would reduce the opportunity of any public official to use of his position for partisan ends. since suspension is incident to removal and should proceed from one who should logically do so. That the penalty of suspension or removal shall not be a bar to the candidacy of the respondent so suspended or removed for any elective public office as long as he meets the qualifications so required for the office: And provided." As for the Provincial Governor. there is one other factor. further. no stigma seems to attach to what really amounts to a misuse of official power. we brush aside needless refinements. And then. his power of suspension has been abrogated. the rights of the person accused. Justice Fernando in Sarcos vs. thus: Such a restraining influence is indeed needed for the undeniable facts of the contemporary political scene bear witness to efforts. Quite apart from the fact that the court has a better grasp of the situation. .. and the limitations on the penalties of suspension and removal abovequoted contradict the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act which punishes the offender to. there is the danger that partisan politics may creep in. to have been ignored all too often. if both are of the same political persuasion. on the part of local officials to make use of their positions to gain partisan advantage. at times disguised. Hard to pigeonhole is the timely observation made by Mr. There is reasonable ground to believe that Congress did really apprehend danger should the power of suspension in consequence of a criminal case under the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act be lodged in any authority other than the court.. That the penalty of suspension shall not exceed the unexpired term of the respondent:Provided. we find no cause or reason why we should break away from the view espoused in Sacros that since the passage of the Decentralization Act of 1967. 15 Therefore. The construction of any statute. and rule that under Section 13 of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Unfortunately. and that is. at other times quite blatant. The court could very well serve as a lever to balance in one equation the public interests involved and the interests of the defendant. against any elective municipal official before the provincial governor or the secretary of the provincial board concerned. therefore. amongst others. implicit in which is the recognition that public advantage and not private benefit should be the test of one's conduct. and considering that in the operation of a given statute fairness must have in the mind of the legislators. There is indeed the dispiriting lesson that in a clash between political considerations and conscience it is the latter that quite often gets dented. "perpetual disqualification from public office. supra.Written subscribed and sworn charges against any elective provincial and city official shall be preferred before the President of the Philippines. and against any elective barrio official before the municipal or city mayor or the municipal or city secretary concerned. has much to recommend it. 14 The last proviso of the penultimate paragraph abovequoted sets the administrative case apart from the criminal. finally. Castillo.

Republic Act 2264. he shall hold such office only until the mayor-elect qualifies. the councilor who obtained the next largest number of votes in the local elections immediately preceding shall assume the office of mayor. and second. they are entitled to reinstatement and all the benefits attached to their office during suspension. Both the Mayor and the Vice-Mayor are in the status of suspended officials. he was also charged in court for a violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and was thereafter suspended by the Provincial Governor." This was qualified by the succeeding sentence: "After all. but in the latter case. then a temporary vacancy in the Office of Mayor of Makati is created.the provisions thereof is lodged with the Court of First Instance. Should the mayor-elect die before assumption of office or fail to qualify for any reason. that court has the inescapable duty to suspend the public official indicted there under. And acquittal certainly may not give rise to removal. rises to the level of permanent removal after the judgment of conviction becomes final. Having reached the conclusion that said respondents should only be deemed suspended. because subsequent to the filing of the petition herein. of course." 16 It is because of all these that we say that when the court directed that the Sheriff of Rizal "remove" said respondents. For. 4. said respondents shall be entitled to reinstatement and to the salaries and benefits which they "failed to receive during suspension. And this. there is more reason to remove them after a judgment of conviction. municipal and municipal district vice-mayor and succession to the office of mayor. for the reason that judgment has not yet become final." with this proviso — "unless in the meantime administrative proceedings have been filed against" them. and so on until the permanent vacancy in the office of mayor is filled. Thus. not removed. he does not succeed to the mayoralty of Makati. If for some reason the councilor who obtained the largest number of votes in the local elections immediately preceding is incapacitated from assuming the office of mayor or refuses to assume such office. 5. The city. under the provisions of Section 7 of the Local Autonomy Act. the councilor who obtained the largest number of votes in the local elections immediately preceding shall assume the office of mayor. Petitioner should normally be entitled to the position of Mayor. What flaws respondents' position are: First. the vice-mayor-elect shall assume the office of mayor. Luciano to prosecute this case. If for some reason the vice-mayor is incapacitated from assuming the office of mayor or refuses to assume such office. municipality or municipal district shall assume the office of mayor for the unexpired term of the latter in the event of permanent vacancy in the office of mayor. Challenged by respondent municipal officials is the standing of petitioner Jose C. Section 7 of the Local Autonomy Act reads: Sec 7. — The vice-mayor of every city. by mandate of Section 13 of the law. Not much learning and effort is necessary to arrive at the meaning and intent of the decision of the Court of First Instance of Rizal (Judge Andres Reyes presiding) in its Criminal Case 18821 when it declared that "the Provincial Sheriff of Rizal is hereby ordered to remove" respondent municipal officials upon the premise that "[i]f the accused should be suspended upon the filing of the Information. If for some reason the vice-mayor-elect is incapacitated from assuming the office of mayor or refuses to . if eventually they are exonerated. The reasons given are that: first. what was meant was simply their physical removal from their respective offices because they were ordered suspended. Suspension.

Rizal. If for some reason the councilor-elect who obtained the largest number of votes in the local elections immediately preceding is incapacitated from assuming the office of mayor or refuses to assume such office. the reason being that. The suspension of petitioner from office by the Provincial Governor is null and void. the councilor who obtained the largest number of votes among the incumbent councilors in the local elections immediately preceding shall perform the duties and exercise the powers of the mayor except the power to appoint. above-quoted. in the local elections immediately preceding shall assume the office of mayor. Provisions have been made for permanent vacancies and temporary in capacities. the councilor-elect who obtained the largest number of votes. Local Autonomy Act. That phrase catches within its reach the present situation before us. we must say. ordinarily "perform the duties and exercise the powers of the mayor" except as the statute so directs — the power to appoint. a dictionary quote tells us. The provisions of this section shall not apply to cities which have no elective mayors and/or vice-mayors. the Councilor who obtained the largest number of votes among the incumbent Councilors in the local election immediately preceding who. Incapacity. sickness. To the extent that said Section 21(a) conflicts with Section 7 of the Local Autonomy Act." 19 Embraced in the foregoing is the legal inability of Mayor Estrella and ViceMayor Gealogo to perform the functions of their respective offices. Second. We cannot assume that Congress intended to leave gaps in legislation. Under the statutory set-up. by reason of their suspension by the Court of First Instance of Rizal. having been prosecuted under the . which after all is not inherent in one acting in a temporary capacity. In the event of temporary incapacity of the mayor to perform the duties of his office on account of absence on leave. the suggestion that the rule of ejusdem generis should limit the incapacity referred to physical disability appears pointless. the vice mayor shall perform the duties and exercise the powers of the mayor except the power to appoint. is the "lack of physical or intellectual power or of natural or legal qualification. it siphons off one significant import of the term — lack of legal qualification. should not stand in the way of said Section 7. the former should yield. because of the temporary incapacity of the Mayor and Vice-Mayor of Makati." that interpretation would unreasonably constrict legislative intent. a later legislation. or any temporary incapacity. Because of this. by the law. and even situations where mayors-elect die before assumption of office. and so on until the office of mayor is filled. suspend or dismiss employees. should. suspend or dismiss employees. the councilor-elect who obtained the next largest number of votes in the local elections immediately preceding shall assume the office of mayor. suspend or dismiss employees. is meant to cover all cases of succession in elective positions for mayors and vice-mayors. as heretofore stated. and the meaning we attribute to the phrase "temporary incapacity. We cannot escape the broad sweep of the term "any temporary incapacity" expressed in the third paragraph of Section 7. That Section 21(a) of the Revised Election Code 18 provides for the filling up of temporary vacancies of elective municipal offices by appointment of the provincial governor with the consent of the provincial board. It is thus our conclusion that.assume such office. is petitioner Jose C. In the event the vice-mayor is temporarily indicated to perform the duties of the office of mayor. in this case.17 The foregoing section in the Local Autonomy Act. Luciano.

become functus officio. Luciano advances that he should now be allowed to sit as Mayor of Makati. Flores in Civil Case 11593 of the Court of First Instance of Rizal and permanently enjoining him. Vice-Mayor Teotimo Gealogo and Councilors Justino Ventura. or whoever acts in his place. It is to be recalled that said case was a suit by respondent Makati elective officials against the Provincial Governor to restrain the latter from suspending them pending the result of the criminal case. His restraining order has. Pedro Ison. And this. and as of the date of the promulgation of. the decision in Criminal Case 18821 of the Court of First Instance of Rizal. These respondents' pose is that Luciano — subsequent to the filing of the present case before this Court — was charged with a violation of the very same law for which they were indicted. all of the Municipality of Makati. Pointedly applicable is the statement of this Court found in Lacuna vs. 7. Respondent elective municipal officials oppose. 6. His own qualifications to fill the office have not been disputed. no reason exists why he should not be allowed to sit as Acting Mayor. But. For the reasons given. is null and void. . are suspended from the discharge of the duties and the exercise of the functions of their respective public offices by virtue of. Ofilada. JUDGMENT is hereby rendered: (1) Declaring that respondents Mayor Maximo Estrella. in pursuance of such suspension. those of said respondents who are still discharging the duties and exercising the functions of their respective offices forthwith cease and desist from so doing. and that in fact he was suspended by the Provincial Governor. At any rate. that the prosecution against petitioner is pending before the Court of First Instance of Rizal. Long familiar is the rule that a judge of a branch of a court may not interfere with the proceedings before a judge of another branch of the same court.provisions of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. it was the mandatory duty of the trial court to order their suspension. however. that suspension by the Provincial Governor. The case before Judge Mariano. We should respect his right. (2) Declaring null and void the preliminary injunction issued by respondent Judge Delfin B. from further proceeding with the said case. Ignacio Babasa and Bernardo Nonato. said restraining order is null and void. therefore. Province of Rizal. and directing that. Referring now to respondent Judge Mariano. it is true that he has temporarily restrained enforcement of the judgment of Judge Reyes in Criminal Case 18821." The injunction issued by respondent Court of Appeals insofar as it operates to stop the suspension of respondent municipal elective officials of Makati cannot be maintained. has since been dismissed on joint petition of the parties therein. we have here said. Likewise to be resolved in these proceedings is the claim petitioner Jose C. Unless petitioner is suspended by the Court of First Instance. for the reason that as we construe the provisions of Section 13 of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Respondents' argument loses potency in the face of our ruling that the power to suspend does not lie with the Provincial Governor. Respondents argue that petitioner should have intervened in Civil Case 11593 before Judge Flores. 20 that: "But the rule is infringed where the Judge of a branch of the court issues a writ of preliminary injunction in a case to enjoin the sheriff from carrying out an order of execution issued in another case by the Judge of another branch of the same court. the authority to suspend is not lodged with the Provincial Governor but with the Court of First Instance where he was charged.

Castro.J. — Any public officer against whom any criminal prosecution under a valid information under this Act or under the provisions of the Revised Penal Code on bribery is pending in court.A. Br. VI. (4) Permanently enjoining the Court of Appeals from enforcing the preliminary injunction issued by the court in CA-G. Fernando. 3019. shall be suspended from office. Petitioner-Appellant. otherwise known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act which stipulates: “Sec. Concepcion. and CESARIO GOLETA.B. but if he is acquitted. (5) Declaring that petitioner Jose C.B. was formerly a member of the Sangguniang Bayan of Bula. of the respondent judge: “The late Mayor S. unless in the meantime administrative proceedings have been filed against him. ESTEBAN M.L. Pontanal is one of the accused in Criminal Case No. Malanyaon. 1969 suspending petitioner Jose C. he was suspended from office and during his incumbency he died. Makalintal. Luciano is entitled to sit as Acting Mayor of Makati. So ordered. P339 was dismissed. Petitioner now contends that any disbursement of funds by the respondent. 1980.. NILO A. he shall be entitled to reinstatement and to the salaries and benefits which he failed to receive during suspension. concur. Due to his death the charge against him in Criminal Case No. P-339 for Violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. He filed an action “to declare illegal the disbursement made by Cesario Goleta as Municipal Treasurer of the Municipality of Bula. 43239-R insofar as it prevents the suspension of respondent elective municipal officials herein. Capistrano. DECISION ABAD SANTOS. Should he be convicted by final judgment. Rizal. to Venancia .B. in his capacity as Municipal Treasurer in favor of the heirs of the late Mayor for salaries corresponding to the period he was under suspension and other benefits will be illegal and contrary to the provisions of Section 13 because said late Mayor S. Respondents-Appellees. as Municipal Treasurer of Bula. Pontanal was not acquitted of the charge against him.. MALANYAON. Camarines Sur. Luciano as Municipal Councilor of Makati. Upon the filing of the case against him in court and after hearing.. 13. vs. Zaldivar. Dizon. as Judge of the CFI of Camarines Sur. Costs against respondent elective municipal officials of Makati. J. Rizal. he shall lose all retirement or gratuity benefits under any law. Teehankee and Barredo.: The question which is presented to Us for resolution in this petition for review concerns the interpretation of Section 13 of R.” Nilo A. JJ. No. C. Camarines Sur. J. the petitioner. LISING. HON.(3) Declaring null and void the order of respondent Provincial Governor of Rizal dated June 3. Reyes.R.” The facts are stated in the Order dated October 3. Cesario Goleta. and . Suspension and loss of benefits. Camarines Sur.

that is. or the evidence does not show that the offense was committed within the territorial jurisdiction of the court. or the complaint or information is not valid or sufficient in form and substance. No pronouncement as to costs.” chanroblesvirtualawlibrary(Par. Pontanal.” We do not see the relevance of this provision to the case at bar. and it is elemental that in such case the defendant may again be prosecuted for the same offense before a court of competent jurisdiction. the dismissal is not an acquittal. 1 of the Revised Penal Code which provides that “Death of the accused pending appeal extinguishes his criminal and civil liability. instead of the proper term acquittal.B. for in such case the dismissal is in reality an acquittal because the case is decided on the merits.000. supra. widow of the late Mayor S. inasmuch as if it were so the defendant could not be again prosecuted before the court of competent jurisdiction. the respondent judge dismissed the action on the ground that “the criminal case against the late Mayor S. is when.:onad WHEREFORE.” We grant the petition and set aside the Order of the court a quo. Dismissal of the case against the suspended officer will not suffice because dismissal does not amount to acquittal. 1977 up to November 28. the defendant is acquitted because the evidence does not show that defendant’s guilt is beyond a reasonable doubt. the same is hereby granted. As aptly stated in People v. either because the court is not a court of competent jurisdiction. 722. 1 of the Order. Dismissal terminates the proceeding. 84 Phil. but dismissal does not decide the case on the merits or that the defendant is not guilty. Pontanal during his suspension from office and ordering the respondent treasurer to retrieve payments so far disbursed. For one thing the case against Mayor Pontanal was not on appeal but on trial. It is in fact a right provided the conditions of the law are present. SO ORDERED. 1979. finding the petition to be well-taken. . the order of the court a quo is hereby set aside and another one is entered declaring illegal the payment of municipal funds for the salaries of the late Mayor S. It is obvious that when the statute speaks of the suspended officer being “acquitted” it means that after due hearing and consideration of the evidence against him the court is of the opinion that his guilt has not been proved beyond reasonable doubt. 81. 732-733[1949]: “Acquittal is always based on the merits. etc.B. and to restrain or prevent respondent Cesario Goleta as such Municipal Treasurer of the aforementioned municipality from further paying or disbursing the balance of the claim.B. after the prosecution has presented all its evidence. For another thing the claim for back salaries is neither a criminal nor a civil liability. The only case in which the word dismissal is commonly but not correctly used. Salico.00 representing a portion of the salary of the late Mayor as such mayor of said municipality during the period of his suspension from August 16.) However. the defendant moves for the dismissal and the court dismisses the case on the ground that the evidence fails to show beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty. Pontanal due to his death amounted to acquittal.” Respondents invoke Art. If the prosecution fails to prove that the offense was committed within the territorial jurisdiction of the court and the case is dismissed. in the amount of P5. No.Pontanal.

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