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DOCTRINES IN CRIMINAL LAW

DOCTRINE OF RATIONAL EQUIVALENCE:
The doctrine of rational equivalence presupposes the consideration not only of the nature and quality
of the weapons used by the defender and the assailant—but of the totality of circumstances surrounding the
defense vis-à-vis, the unlawful aggression. (LADISLAO ESPINOSA v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES,
G.R. No. 181071, 15 March 2010)

BAIL PENDING APPEAL:
Any application for bail pending appeal should be viewed from the perspective of two stages: (1) the
determination of discretion stage, where the appellate court must determine whether any of the circumstances
in the third paragraph of Section 5, Rule 114 is present; this will establish whether or not the appellate court
will exercise sound discretion or stringent discretion in resolving the application for bail pending appeal and
(2) the exercise of discretion stage where, assuming the appellant‘s case falls within the first scenario allowing
the exercise of sound discretion, the appellate court may consider all relevant circumstances, other than those
mentioned in the third paragraph of Section 5, Rule 114, including the demands of equity and justice; on the
basis thereof, it may either allow or disallow bail. (JOSE ANTONIO LEVISTE v. THE COURT OF
APPEALSand PEOPLE OF THEPHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 189122, 17 March 2010)

PROSECUTION OF CASES OF ILLEGAL SALE AND ILLEGAL POSSESSION
OF DANGEROUS DRUGS, CHAIN OF CUSTODY RULE:

Under R.A. 9165 and its IRR, the following elements must be present in the prosecution of the
offense: (1) that the transaction took place; (2) that the illegal drug was presented as evidence; and that the
buyer and seller were identified. What is material is the presentation of the illegal drug in court for it
establishes the fact that the crime is committed. Therefore, the identity of the illegal drug must be identified
with unwavering exactitude; and this is achieved if the chain of custody if the said illegal drugs remains
unbroken.

The failure to comply with the procedural requirement does not automatically result to the
nullification of the seizure and custody of the illegal drugs, if the following are present: (1) that the non-
compliance was attended by justifiable grounds; and (2) that the identity and evidentiary value of the seized
items are properly preserved by the apprehending team. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. RONALDO
DE GUZMAN, G.R. No. 186498, 26 March 2010)

For illegal possession of regulated or prohibited drugs, the prosecution must establish the following
elements: (1) the accused is in possession of an item or object, which is identified to be a prohibited or
regulated drug; (2) such possession is not authorized by law; and (3) the accused freely and consciously
possessed the drug.

Admittedly, a testimony about a perfect chain is not always the standard as it is almost always
impossible to obtain an unbroken chain. What is of utmost importance is the preservation of the integrity
and the evidentiary value of the seized items. (ROSANA ASIATICO y STA. MARIA v. PEOPLE OF
THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 195005, 12 September 2011)

Drug pushing has been committed with so much casualness even between total strangers.Sec. 5,
Article II of R.A. No. 9165 is clear that the quantity of shabu sold is not material in the determination of the
corresponding penalty therefor. Likewise applicable in the determination of the appropriate penalty is the
Indeterminate Sentence Law, which provides that ―if the offense is punished by any other law, the court shall
sentence the accused to an indeterminate sentence, the maximum term of which shall not exceed the
maximum fixed by said law and the minimum shall not be less than the minimum term prescribed by the
same.‖ (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES V. CAMILO D. NICART and MANUEL T. CAPANPAN, G.R.
No. 182059, 4 July 2012)

In all prosecutions for the violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, the
existence of the prohibited drug has to be proved. The chain of custody rule requires that testimony be
presented about every link in the chain, from the moment the item was seized up to the time it is offered
in evidence. To this end, the prosecution must ensure that the substance presented in court is the same
substance seized from the accused. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ALEX WATAMAMA y ESIL,
G.R. No. 194945, 30 July 2012)

To prove illegal sale of shabu, the following elements must be present: ―(a) the identities of the buyer
and the seller, the object of the sale, and the consideration; and (b) the delivery of the thing sold and the
payment for the thing. And, to secure conviction, it is material to establish that the transaction or sale actually
took place, and to bring to the court the corpus delicti as evidence.

As to the crime of illegal possession of shabu, the prosecution clearly proved the presence of the
following essential elements of the crime: ―(a) the accused [was] in possession of an item or object that is
identified to be a prohibited or dangerous drug; (b) such possession [was] not authorized by law; and (c) the
accused freely and consciously possessed the drug.‖ (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPINES v. JOHN BRIAN
AMARILLO a.k.a“JAO MAPA”, G.R. No. 194721, 15 August 2012)

What must be proved beyond reasonable doubt is the fact of possession of the prohibited drug itself.
This may be done by presenting the police officer who actually recovered the prohibited drugs as a witness,
being the person who has the direct knowledge of the possession. In every criminal prosecution for
possession of illegal drugs, the Prosecution must account for the custody of the incriminating evidence from
the moment of seizure and confiscation until the moment it is offered in evidence. (PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. REYNALDO BELOCURA y PEREZ, G.R. No. 173474, 29 August 2012)

Conviction is proper in prosecutions involving illegal sale of dangerous drugs if the following
elements are present: (1) the identity of the buyer and the seller, the object, and the consideration; and (2) the
delivery of the thing sold and the payment thereto.
The Court has already ruled in a number of cases that non-presentation of the forensic chemist in
illegal drugs cases is an insufficient cause for acquittal. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. CALEXTO
DUQUE FUNDALES, JR., G.R. No. 184606, 05 September 2012)

The elements necessary for a prosecution for violation of R.A. 9165 or sale of dangerous drugs are:
(1) the identity of the buyer and the seller, the object and the consideration; and (2) the delivery of the thing
sold and the payment. What is material is the proof that the transaction actually took place, coupled with the
presentation before the court of the corpus delicti. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JOSE ALMODIEL
alias "DO DONG ASTROBAL”, G.R. No. 200951, 05 September 2012)

What assumes primary importance in drug cases is the prosecution‘s proof, to the point of moral
certainty, that the prohibited drug presented in court as evidence against the accused is the same item
recovered from his possession. Non-compliance with the prescribed procedure does not automatically render
the seizure of the dangerous drug void and the evidence inadmissible. The law itself lays down certain
exceptions to the general compliance requirement – ―as long as the integrity and the evidentiary value of the
seized items are properly preserved by the apprehending officer/team,‖ the seizure of and the custody over
the dangerous drugs shall not be rendered void and invalid. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. RONALD
DE JESUS y APACIBLE and AMELITO DELA CRUZ y PUA, G.R. No. 191753, 17 September 2012)
Non-presentation of the pre-operation orders and post operation report was not fatal to the cause of
the prosecution in illegal sale of drugs. Pre-operational reports are not indispensable in a buy-bust operation.
Further, the quantity of bills involved is a purely operational matter left to the discretion of the arresting
team. The quantity of bills used will not affect the outcome of the case.

The marking of the seized items at the police station and in the presence of the accused was
sufficient compliance with the rules on chain of custody. Marking upon immediate confiscation contemplates
even marking at the nearest police station or office of the apprehending team.(PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. MOHAMAD ANGKOB y MLANG, G.R. No. 191062, 19 September 2012)

What is material is proof that the transaction or sale actually took place, coupled with the
presentation in court of evidence of the corpus delicti. The commission of illegal sale merely requires the
consummation of the selling transaction, which happens the moment the buyer receives the drug from the
seller. As long as the police officer went through the operation as a buyer, whose offer was accepted by
appellant, followed by the delivery of the dangerous drugs to the former, the crime is already consummated.
In this case, the prosecution has amply proven all the elements of the drugs sale with moral certainty.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. REYNA BATALUNA LLANITA and SOTERO BUAR Y
BANGUIS, G.R. No. 189817, 3 October 2012)

For the successful prosecution of illegal sale of dangerous drugs, the following elements must be
established: (1) the identity of the buyer and the seller, the object and consideration; and (2) the delivery of
the thing sold and the payment therefor. What is material is the proof that the transaction or sale actually
took place, coupled with the presentation in court of the corpus delicti. The delivery of the contraband to the
poseur-buyer and the receipt of the marked money consummate the buy-bust transaction between the
entrapping officers and the accused. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MARICAR BRAINER y
MANGULABNAN, G.R. No. 188571, 10 October 2012)
Where the accused was likewise 17 years old at the time of the commission of the offense, the Court
held, inter alia, that: (a) pursuant to Sec. 98 of R.A. 9165, the penalty for acts punishable by life imprisonment
to death provided in the same law shall be reclusion perpetua to death when the offender is a minor; and (b) that
the penalty should be graduated since the said provision adopted the technical nomenclature of penalties
provided for in the Revised Penal Code.
In the prosecution of illegal sale of drugs, the elements that should be proven are the following: (1)
the identities of the buyer and the seller, the object, and consideration; and (2) the delivery of the thing sold
and the payment therefor. The prosecution must (1) prove that the transaction or sale actually took place, and
(2) present in court evidence of the corpus delicti. As regards the prosecution for illegal possession of dangerous
drugs, the elements to be proven are the following: (1) the accused is in possession of an item or an object
identified to be a prohibited or a regulated drug; (2) such possession is not authorized by law; and (3) the
accused freely and consciously possessed the said drug. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MERIAM
GURU y KAZAN, G.R. No. 189808, 24 October 2012)

What is material to the prosecution for illegal sale of dangerous drugs is the proof that the
transaction or sale actually took place, coupled with the presentation in court of evidence of corpus delicti.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. GODOFREDO MARIANO and ALLAN DORINGO, G.R. No.
191193, 14 November 2012)

Statutory rules on preserving the chain of custody of confiscated prohibited drugs and related items
are designed to ensure the integrity and reliability of the evidence to be presented against the accused. Their
observance is the key to the successful prosecution of illegal possession or illegal sale of dangerous drugs.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. SAMIN ZAKARIA y MAKASULAY and JOANA SAMIN
ZAKARIA y MAKASULAY, G.R. No. 181042, 26 November 2012)

Non-compliance with Section 21 does not necessarily render the arrest illegal or the items seized
inadmissible. What is essential is that the integrity and evidentiary value of the seized items are preserved
which would be utilized in the determination of the guilt or innocence of the accused. Neither law nor
jurisprudence requires that the police must apply fluorescent powder to the buy-bust money to prove the
commission of the offense. The same holds true for the conduct of finger print examination on the money
used in the buy-bust operation. What is crucial is that the prosecution proves, as in this case, the delivery of
the prohibited drugs to the poseur-buyer and the presentation of the confiscated drugs before the court.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. BERNABE ANESLAG y ANDRADE, et al., G.R. No. 185386, 21
November 2012)

Non-compliance with Section 21, Article II, of R.A. 9165 does not render an accused‘s arrest illegal
or the items seized/confiscated from him inadmissible. What is essential is the ‗preservation of the integrity
and the evidentiary value of the seized items as the same would be utilized in the determination of the guilt or
innocence of the accused.‘ (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JOSEPH ROBELO y TUNGALA, G.R.
No. 184181, 26 November 2012)

In the prosecution of illegal sale of dangerous drugs, the two essential elements are: ―(1) the identity
of the buyer and the seller, the object, and the consideration; and (2) the delivery of the thing sold and the
payment therefor.‖
R.A. No. 7659 provides that the unauthorized sale of 200 grams or more of shabu or
methamphetamine hydrochloride is punishable by reclusion perpetua to death and a fine ranging from five
hundred thousand pesos to ten million pesos. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. SIMPRESUETA M.
SERASPE, G.R. No. 180919, 9 January 2013)

In order for prosecution for illegal possession of a dangerous drug to prosper, there must be proof
that (1) the accused was in possession of an item or an object identified to be a prohibited or regulated drug,
(2) such possession is not authorized by law, and (3) the accused was freely and consciously aware of being in
possession of the drug. (NELSON VALLENO v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 192050, 9
January 2013)

It is material in illegal sale of dangerous drugs that the sale actually took place. What consummates
the buy-bust transaction is the delivery of the drugs to the poseur-buyer and, in turn, the seller‘s receipt of the
marked money. While the parties may have agreed on the selling price of the shabu and delivery of payment
was intended, these do not prove consummated sale. Receipt of the marked money, whether done before
delivery of the drugs or after, is required. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINE v. HONG YEN E AND TSIEN
TSIEN CHUA, G.R. No. 181826, 09 January 2013)

If a person is found to have more than five (5) grams of shabu in his possession, then his purpose in
carrying them is to dispose, traffic, or sell it. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. CAMALODING LABA,
G.R. No. 199938, 28 January 2013)

In prosecutions involving narcotics, the narcotic substance itself constitutes the corpus delicti of the
offense and the fact of its existence is vital to sustain a judgment of conviction beyond reasonable doubt. Of
paramount importance in these cases is that the identity of the dangerous drug be likewise established beyond
reasonable doubt. The failure of the authorities to immediately mark the seized drugs raises reasonable doubt
on the authenticity of the corpus delicti and suffices to rebut the presumption of regularity in the performance
of official duties. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. REYNALDO NACUA, G.R. No. 200165, 30
January 2013)

The commission of the offense of illegal sale of dangerous drugs, like shabu, merely requires the
consummation of the selling transaction, which happens the moment the exchange of money and drugs
between the buyer and the seller takes place.

The chain of custody of the seized drugs in a buy-bust operation had been sufficiently established
when there was proof of the following: first, the seizure and marking, if practicable, of the illegal drug
recovered from the accused by the apprehending officer; second, the turnover of the illegal drug seized by the
apprehending officer to the investigating officer; third, the turnover by the investigating officer of the illegal
drug to the forensic chemist for laboratory examination; and fourth, the turnover and submission of the
marked illegal drug seized from the forensic chemist to the court. (ELIZABETH DE LA VEGA y
BAUTISTA, G.R. No. 177158, 6 February 2013)

For a case of illegal sale of drugs to prosper, the prosecution must establish that (1) the illegal sale of
the dangerous drugs actually took place; and (2) the presentation in court of the corpus delicti or the dangerous
drugs seized in evidence. What is crucial is that the integrity and evidentiary value of the seized items are
preserved for they will be used in the determination of the guilt or innocence of the accused.

When prosecuting an illegal possession of dangerous drugs case, the following elements must be
established: (1) the accused is in possession of an item or object, which is identified to be a prohibited drug;
(2) such possession is not authorized by law; and (3) the accused freely and consciously possessed the drug.
Mere possession of a prohibited drug, without legal authority, is punishable under Republic Act No. 9165.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MALIK MANALAO y ALAUYA, G.R. No. 187496, 6 February
2013)

The different links that the prosecution must prove in order to establish the chain of custody in a
buy-bust operation, namely: First, the seizure and marking, if practicable, of the illegal drug recovered from
the accused by the apprehending officer; Second, the turnover of the illegal drug seized by the apprehending
officer to the investigating officer; Third, the turnover by the investigating officer of the illegal drug to the
forensic chemist for laboratory examination; and Fourth, the turnover and submission of the marked illegal
drug seized by the forensic chemist to the court. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. SAIBEN
LANGCUA y DAIMLA, G.R. No. 190343, 6 February 2013)

R.A. No. 6235 (The Anti-Hijacking Law) authorizes search for prohibited materials or substances. To
limit the action of the airport security personnel to simply refusing an accused into the aircraft and sending
him home, and thereby depriving them of ―the ability and facility to act accordingly, including to further
search without warrant, in light of such circumstances, would be to sanction impotence and ineffectivity in
law enforcement, to the detriment of society.

Failure of the prosecution to show compliance with the procedural requirements provided in Section
21, Article II of R.A. No. 9165 and its IRR is not fatal and does not automatically render accused-appellant‘s
arrest illegal or the items seized/confiscated from him inadmissible. What is of utmost importance is the
preservation of the integrity and evidentiary value of the seized items, as the same would be utilized in the
determination of the guilt or innocence of the accused. As long as the chain of custody remains unbroken,
the guilt of the accused will not be affected. (DON DJOWEL SALES y ABALAHIN v. PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 191023, 6 February 2013)

Despite the rigid procedural rules under the law on the custody and disposition of confiscated,
seized, and/or surrendered dangerous drugs, it was held, however, that a testimony about a perfect chain is
not always the standard as it is almost always impossible to obtain an unbroken chain. What is essential is to
preserve the integrity and the evidentiary value of the seized items. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v.
VICTOR DE JESUS y GARCIA, G.R. No. 198794, 6 February 2013)

To prosecute illegal possession of dangerous drugs, there must be a showing that (1) the accused is in
possession of an item or object, which is identified to be a prohibited drug; (2) such possession is not
authorized by law; and (3) the accused freely and consciously possessed the said drug. (PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. JAMES GALIDO y NOBLE, G.R. No. 192231, 13 February 2013)
The commission of the offense of illegal sale of dangerous drugs, like shabu, requires simply the
consummation of the selling transaction, which happens at the moment the buyer receives the drug from the
seller. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ARNOLD TAPERE y POLPOL, G.R. No. 178065, 20
February 2013)

A guidance counsellor, who caught a school employee in the possession of marijuana, and who had
initial custody of the seized drug is not expected to be familiar with the niceties of the procedures in the initial
handling of the confiscated evidence. To impose on teachers and other school personnel the observance of
the same procedure required of law enforcers (like marking) processes, unfamiliar to them – is to set a
dangerous precedent that may eventually lead to the acquittal of drug peddlers. (MARQUEZ y RAYOS DEL
SOL v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 197207, 13 March 2013)

Consistency with the "chain of custody" rule requires that the ―marking‖ of the seized items – to
truly ensure that they are the same items that enter the chain and are eventually the ones offered in evidence –
should be done (1) in the presence of the apprehended violator (2) immediately upon confiscation. (PEOPLE
OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JOSE ALEX SECRETO y VILLANUEVA., G.R. No. 198115, 27 February
2013)

EXTINGUISHMENT OF LIABILITY:
Paniterce‘s death during the pendency of his appeal, extinguished not only his criminal liabilities for
the rape and acts of lasciviousness committed against his daughters, but also his civil liabilities solely arising
from or based on said crimes.

According to Article 89(1) of the Revised Penal Code, criminal liability is totally extinguished: 1. By
the death of the convict, as to the personal penalties; and as to pecuniary penalties, liability therefor is
extinguished only when the death of the offender occurs before final judgment. (PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. DOMINGO PANITENCE, G.R. No. 186382, 5 April 2010)

It is plain that both the personal penalty of imprisonment and pecuniary penalty of fine of Brillantes
were extinguished upon his death pending appeal of his conviction by the lower courts. The extinguishment
of Brillantes‘ criminal and pecuniary liabilities is predicated on his death and not on his acquittal. Following
the provision, the appeal taken by Brillantes and subsequent extinguishment of his liabilities is not applicable
to De la Cruz. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES V. SATURNINO DELA CRUZ and JOSE
BRILLANTES, G.R. No. 190610, 25 April 2012)

It is also settled that ―upon the death of the accused pending appeal of his conviction, the criminal
action is extinguished inasmuch as there is no longer a defendant to stand as the accused; the civil action
instituted therein for recovery of civil liability ex delicto is ipso facto extinguished, grounded as it is on the
criminal.‖ (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. FLORENCIO AGACER, et al., G.R. No. 177751, 7 January
2013)

REPUBLIC ACT 3019:
Misconduct means intentional wrongdoing or deliberate violation of a rule of law or standard of
behavior. To constitute an administrative offense, misconduct should relate to or be connected with the
performance of the official functions and duties of a public officer. In grave misconduct, as distinguished
from simple misconduct, the elements of corruption, clear intent to violate the law or flagrant disregard of an
established rule must be manifest. (TERESITA G. NARVASA v. BENJAMIN A. SANCHEZ, JR., G.R.
No. 169449, 26 March 2010)

An exception to the rule that the prescriptive period for offenses under R.A. 3019 commences to run
on the day the crime is committed regardless of the lack of knowledge of the aggrieved person of his right to
sue or of the facts out of which his right arises is the ―blameless ignorance‖ doctrine, incorporated in Section
2 of Act No. 3326. Under this doctrine, the statute of limitations runs only upon discovery of the fact of the
invasion of a right that will support a cause of action. The courts would decline to apply the statute of
limitations where the plaintiff does not know or has no reasonable means of knowing the existence of a cause
of action. Thus, it was held in a catena of cases, that if the violation of the special law was not known at the
time of its commission, the prescription begins to run only from the discovery thereof, i.e., discovery of the
unlawful nature of the constitutive act or acts. (PRESIDENTIAL AD HOC FACT- FINDING
COMMITTEE ON BEHEST LOANS v. HONORABLE ANIANO A. DESIERTO, G.R. No. 135715, 13
April 2011)

Under Section 3(e) of R.A. 3019, three essential elements must thus be satisfied, viz:

1. The accused must be a public officer discharging administrative, judicial or official
functions;

2. He must have acted with manifest partiality, evident bad faith or inexcusable negligence; and

3. His action caused any undue injury to any party, including the government or gave any private party
unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference in the discharge of his functions. (JOSE R. CATACUTAN v. PEOPLE
OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 175991, 31 August 2011)

The essential elements of Section 3(e) of R.A. No. 3019, as amended, are as follows:
1. The accused must be a public officer discharging administrative, judicial or official functions;
2. He must have acted with manifest partiality, evident bad faith or gross inexcusable negligence; and
3. His action caused any undue injury to any party, including the government, or gave any private party
unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference in the discharge of his functions.

Under the Indeterminate Sentence Law, if the offense is punishable by a special law, as in the present
case, an indeterminate penalty shall be imposed on the accused, the maximum term of which shall not exceed
the maximum fixed by the law, and the minimum not less than the minimum prescribed therein.
(BENJAMIN A. UMIPIG v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 17135, 18 July 2012; RENATO B.
PALOMO and MARGIE C. MABITAD v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 171755, 18 July
2013; CARMENCITA FONTANILLA-PAYABYAB v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No.
171776, 18 July 2012)

Bad faith connotes, not only bad judgment or negligence, but also a dishonest purpose or conscious
wrongdoing. But bad faith alone on the part of the accused is not sufficient. Such bad faith must be evident.
(ELSA B. REYES v. SANDIGANBAYAN (4TH DIVISION) AND PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES,
G.R. NO. 167202; ARTEMIO C. MENDOZA v. SANDIGANBAYAN (4TH DIVISION) AND PEOPLE
OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. NO. 167223; ELSA B. REYES v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES,G.R.
NO. 167271; CARLOAD A. MIRANDA v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 148607, 05
September 2012)

The Sandiganbayan has criminal jurisdiction over graft charges filed against the Legal Department
Head of the Armed Forces of the Philippines-Retirement and Separation Benefit System (AFP-RSBS). The
Legal Department Head falls under the definition of ―manager‖ of a government-owned or controlled
corporation. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MEINRADO ENRIQUE A. BELLO, et al., G.R. Nos.
166948-59, 29 August 2012)
RAPE AND ACTS OF LASCIVIOUSNESS:
The Court has ruled that a child is deemed subject to other sexual abuse when the child is the victim
of lascivious conduct under the coercion or influence of any adult. In lascivious conduct under the coercion
or influence of any adult, there must be some form of compulsion equivalent to intimidation which subdues
the free exercise of the offended party‘s free will.
The Court has already ruled that it is inconsequential that sexual abuse under R.A. 7610 occurred
only once. Section 3(b) of R.A. 7610 provides that the abuse may be habitual or not. Hence, the fact that the
offense occurred only once is enough to hold the accused liable for acts of lasciviousness under R.A. 7610.
(JOJIT GARINGARAO v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 192760, 20 July 2011)
The Court resolves this case guided by these time-tested principles in deciding rape cases, namely: (1)
an accusation for rape is easy to make, difficult to prove, and even more difficult to disprove; (2) in view of
the intrinsic nature of the crime, where only two persons are usually involved, the testimony of the
complainant must be scrutinized with utmost caution; and (3) the evidence for the prosecution must stand or
fall on its own merits and cannot draw strength from the weakness of the evidence for the defense.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES V. DANILO MIRASOL AGUSTIN, G.R. No. 194581, 2 July 2012)

Courts use the following principles in deciding rape cases: (1) an accusation of rape can be made with
facility; it is difficult to prove but more difficult for the person accused, though innocent, to disprove; (2) due
to the nature of the crime of rape in which only two persons are usually involved, the testimony of the
complainant must be scrutinized with extreme caution; and (3) the evidence for the prosecution must stand
or fall on its own merits and cannot be allowed to draw strength from the weakness of the evidence for the
defense. Due to the nature of this crime, conviction for rape may be solely based on the complainant‘s
testimony provided it is credible, natural, convincing, and consistent with human nature and the normal
course of things. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ANTONIO BARAOIL, G.R. No. 194608, 9 July
2012)

Conviction for rape may be solely based on the victim‘s testimony provided it is credible, natural,
convincing, and consistent with human nature and the normal course of things. (PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. PEDRO BANIG, G.R. No. 177137, 23 August 2012)

The two elements of statutory rape are: (1) that the accused had carnal knowledge of a woman; and
(2) that the woman is below 12 years of age. If the victim is beyond 12 years of age, as in this case, accused
cannot be convicted of statutory rape. However, even though accused-appellant cannot be convicted of
statutory rape in the second criminal case, and despite the absence of evidence of resistance on the part of
AAA on said count, his criminal liability for rape nevertheless remains. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES
vs. ANTONIO OSMA, Jr. y AGATON, G.R. No. 187734, 29 August 2012)

Jurisprudence dictates that the labia majora must be entered for rape to be consummated, and not
merely for the penis to stroke the surface of the female organ. Thus, a grazing of the surface of the female
organ or touching the mons pubis of the pudendum is not sufficient to constitute consummated rape. Absent
any showing of the slightest penetration of the female organ, i.e., touching of either labia of the pudendum by
the penis, there can be no consummated rape; at most, it can only be attempted rape, if not acts of
lasciviousness. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. CHRISTOPHER PAREJA, G.R. No. 188979, 05
September 2012)

Rape is not a respecter of place and time. In this light, rape in this case was not an impossibility even
if ―AAA‘s‖ siblings were not awakened from their deep slumber. Neither does the lack of any form of injury
or fresh hymenal lacerations negate the commission of rape. Settled is the doctrine that absence of external
signs or physical injuries does not negate the commission of rape.

In almost all rape cases, the credibility of the victim‘s testimony is crucial in view of the intrinsic
nature of the crime where only the participants therein can testify to its occurrence. The victim‘s testimony is
most vital and must be received with the utmost caution. Once found credible, the victim‘s lone testimony is
sufficient to sustain a conviction. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ANTONINO VENTURINA, G.R.
No. 183097, 12 September 2012)

It is well-established in jurisprudence that a person may be charged and convicted for both illegal
recruitment and estafa. The reason therefor is not hard to discern: illegal recruitment is malum prohibitum, while
estafa is mala in se. In the first, the criminal intent of the accused is not necessary for conviction. In the second,
such intent is imperative. Estafa under Article 315, paragraph 2(a) of the Revised Penal Code is committed by
any person who defrauds another by using fictitious name, or falsely pretends to possess power, influence,
qualifications, property, credit, agency, business or imaginary transactions, or by means of similar deceits
executed prior to or simultaneously with the commission of fraud.

With the minority under 12 years of the offended party being an element in statutory rape, the proof
of such minority age should conform to the Pruna guidelines in order that such essential element would be
established beyond reasonable doubt: (1) The best evidence to prove the age of the offended party is an
original or certified true copy of the certificate of live birth of such party; (2) In the absence of a certificate of
live birth, similar authentic documents such as baptismal certificate and school records which show the date
of birth of the victim would suffice to prove age; (3) If the certificate of live birth or authentic document is
shown to have been lost or destroyed or otherwise unavailable, the testimony, if clear and credible, of the
victim‘s mother or a member of the family either by affinity or consanguinity who is qualified to testify on
matters respecting pedigree such as the exact age or date of birth of the offended party pursuant to Section
40, Rule 130 of the Rules on Evidence shall be sufficient under the following circumstances:
a. If the victim is alleged to be below 3 years of age and what is sought to be proved is that she is less
than 7 years old;
b. If the victim is alleged to be below 7 years of age and what is sought to be proved is that she is less
than 12 years old;
c. If the victim is alleged to be below 12 years of age and what is sought to be proved is that she is
less than 18 years old;
(4) In the absence of a certificate of live birth, authentic document, or the testimony of the victim‘s mother or
relatives concerning the victim‘s age, the complainant‘s testimony will suffice provided that it is expressly and
clearly admitted by the accused; (5) It is the prosecution that has the burden of proving the age of the
offended party. The failure of the accused to object to the testimonial evidence regarding age shall not be
taken against him; (6) The trial court should always make a categorical finding as to the age of the victim.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. EDGARDO LUPAC y FLORES, G.R. No. 182230, 19 September
2012)

Statutory rape is committed by sexual intercourse with a woman below twelve years of age regardless
of her consent, or the lack of it, to the sexual act. To convict an accused of the crime of statutory rape, the
prosecution carries the burden of proving: (1) the age of the complainant; (2) the identity of the accused; and
(3) the sexual intercourse between the accused and the complainant.

Although the information charged the accused of the crime of statutory rape, he can still be held
liable for the lesser crime of acts of lasciviousness as the latter is an offense subsumed or included in the
former. The elements of acts of lasciviousness are: (1) That the offender commits any act of lasciviousness or
lewdness; (2) That it is done under any of the following circumstances: a. By using force or intimidation; or b.
When the offended party is deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious; or c. When the offended party is
under 12 years of age; and (3) That the offended party is another person of either sex. (PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. JUANITO GARCIA y GUMAY, G.R. No. 200529, 19 September 2012)
Under Art. 335 of the RPC, the elements of rape are: (1) the offender had carnal knowledge of the
victim; and (2) such act was accomplished through force or intimidation; or when the victim is deprived of
reason or otherwise unconscious; or when the victim is under 12 years of age.
Following a long line of jurisprudence, full penetration of the female genital organ is not
indispensable. It suffices that there is proof of the entrance of the male organ into the labia of the pudendum
of the female organ. Although the Court is convinced that indeed rape had been committed by appellant, we
find that the prosecution failed to present VEA‘s birth certificate or to otherwise unequivocally prove that
VEA was indeed below 12 years of age at the time of the incident in question. In view of this paucity in the
prosecution‘s evidence on the matter of the victim‘s age, jurisprudence compels us to reclassify appellant‘s
offense as simple rape. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ALEJANDRO VIOLEJA y ASARTIN, G.R.
No. 177140, 17 October 2012)

A candid narration by a rape victim deserves credence particularly where no ill motive is attributed to
the rape victim that would make her testify falsely against the accused. For no woman in her right mind will
admit to having been raped, allow an examination of her most private parts and subject herself as well as her
family to the humiliation and shame concomitant with a rape prosecution, unless the charges are true. Where
an alleged rape victim says she was sexually abused, she says almost all that is necessary to show that rape had
been inflicted on her person, provided her testimony meets the test of credibility. (PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. VAL DELOS REYES, G.R. No. 177357, 17 October 2012)

Qualified rape is punishable by death under Article 266-B of the Revised Penal Code, but the trial
court correctly imposed the penalty of reclusion perpetua, without eligibility for parole, in view of the provisions
of Republic Act No. 9346 that prohibit the imposition of death penalty. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES
v. NOEL T. LAURINO, G.R. No. 199264, 24 October 2012)

There must be independent evidence proving the age of the victim, other than the testimonies of
prosecution witnesses and the absence of denial by the accused.‖ Documents such as her original or duly
certified birth certificate, baptismal certificate or school records would suffice as competent evidence of her
age.

It is settled that ―when either one of the qualifying circumstances of relationship and minority is
omitted or lacking, that which is pleaded in the information and proved by the evidence may be considered as
an aggravating circumstance.‖ (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. BENJAMIN SORIA, G.R. No. 179031,
14 November 2012)

Laceration of the hymen, even if considered the most telling and irrefutable physical evidence of
sexual assault, is not always essential to establish the consummation of the crime of rape. (PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. NEIL B. COLORADO, G.R. No. 200792, 14 November 2012)

The absence of external signs of physical injuries does not negate rape.Proof of injuries is not
necessary because this is not an essential element of the crime. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v.
WILLIAM MANGUNE y DEL ROSARIO, G.R. No. 186463, 14 November 2012)

Factual findings of the trial court, especially on the credibility of the rape victim, are accorded great
weight and respect and will not be disturbed on appeal. When the offended parties are young and immature
girls, courts are inclined to lend credence to their version of what transpired, considering not only their
relative vulnerability, but also the shame and embarrassment to which they would be exposed if the matter
about which they testified were not true. Also, the lone testimony of the victim in a rape case, if credible, is
enough to sustain a conviction. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. VICTOR LANSANGAN, G.R. No.
201587, 14 November 2012)

It is relevant to mention that carnal knowledge as an element of rape does not require penetration.
Carnal knowledge is simply the act of a man having sexual bodily connections with a woman. Indeed, all that
is necessary for rape to be consummated, according to People v. Campuhan, is for the penis of the accused to
come into contact with the lips of the pudendum of the victim. Hence, rape is consummated once the penis
of the accused touches either labia of the pudendum.

The rape that was committed was not qualified rape because the accused and the victim‘s mother
were not legally married to each other. What the records show, instead, was that they were in a common-law
relationship. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ROGELIC ABRENCILLO, G.R. No. 183100, 28
November 2012)

Rape under paragraph 1 of Article 266-B shall be punished by reclusion perpetua. Whenever the crime
of rape is committed with the use of a deadly weapon or by two or more persons, the penalty shall be reclusion
perpetua to death. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JERRY BATULA, alias "CESAR", G.R. No.
181699, 28 November 2012)

The penalty of reclusion temporal in its medium period to reclusion perpetua shall be imposed upon the
following:

―xxx (b) Those who commit the act of sexual intercourse or lascivious conduct with a child exploited
in prostitution or subject to other sexual abuse: Provided, That when the victim is under twelve (12) years of
age, the perpetrators shall be prosecuted under Article 335, paragraph 3, for rape and Article 336 of Act No.
3815, as amended, the Revised Penal Code, for rape or lascivious conduct, as the case may be: Provided, That
the penalty for lascivious conduct when the victim is under twelve (12) years of age shall be reclusion
temporal in its medium period.‖ (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. FELIX MORANTE, G.R. No.
187732, 28 November 2012)

Under Article 266-B of the Revised Penal Code, the death penalty is imposed if the rape is
committed with the attendance of any ―aggravating/ qualifying circumstances.‖ One of such
―aggravating/qualifying circumstances‖ is ―when the victim is under eighteen (18) years of age and offender is
a parent, ascendant, step-parent, guardian, relative by consanguinity or affinity within the third civil degree, or
the common-law spouse of the parent of the victim.‖ (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. PEDRO
BUADO, JR., y CIPRIANO, G.R. No. 170634, 8 January 2013)

Paragraph 1, Article 266-A of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by Republic Act No. 8353,
provides for two (2) circumstances when carnal knowledge of a woman with mental disability is considered
rape. Subparagraph (b) thereof refers to rape of a person ―deprived of reason‖ while subparagraph (d) refers
to rape of a ―demented person.‖ The term ―deprived of reason‖ has been construed to encompass those
suffering from mental abnormality, deficiency or retardation. The term ―demented,‖ on the other hand,
means having dementia, which Webster defines as mental deterioration; also madness, insanity. Thus, a
mental retardate can be classified as a person ―deprived of reason,‖ not one who is ―demented‖ and carnal
knowledge of a mental retardate is considered rape under subparagraph (b), not subparagraph (d) of Article
266-A(1) of the Revised Penal Code, as amended.

Without doubt, carnal knowledge of a woman who is a mental retardate is rape under the provisions
of law. Proof of force or intimidation is not necessary, as a mental retardate is not capable of giving consent
to a sexual act. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. REY MONTICALVO, G.R. No. 193507, 30 January
2013)

The accused in a prosecution for rape may be convicted solely on the basis of the testimony of the
victim that is credible, convincing, and consistent with human nature and the normal course of things.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ANTONIO BASALLO, G.R. No. 182457, 30 January 2013)

Sexual abuse under Section 5(b) of R.A. No. 7610 has three elements: (1) the accused commits an act
of sexual intercourse or lascivious conduct; (2) the said act is performed with a child exploited in prostitution
or subjected to other sexual abuse; and (3) the child is below 18 years old.

The elements of statutory rape are that: (a) the victim is a female under 12 years or is demented; and
(b) the offender has carnal knowledge of the victim. Considering that the essence of statutory rape is carnal
knowledge of a female without her consent, neither the use of force, threat or intimidation on the female, nor
the female‘s deprivation of reason or being otherwise unconscious, nor the employment on the female of
fraudulent machinations or grave abuse of authority is necessary to commit statutory rape. (PEOPLE OF
THE PHILIPPINES v. TOMAS TEODORO y ANGELES, G.R. No. 175876, 20 February 2013)

To raise the crime of simple rape to qualified rape under Article 266-B, paragraph (1) of the Revised
Penal Code, as amended, the twin circumstances of minority of the victim and her relationship to the
offender must concur. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ANASTACIO AMISTOSO, G.R. No. 201447,
09 January 2013)

The stepfather-stepdaughter relationship as a qualifying circumstance presupposes that the victim‘s
mother and the accused are married to each other. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ROLANDO
CABUNGAN, G.R. No. 189355, 23 January 2013)

The Court has often reiterated the jurisprudential principle of affording great respect and even
finality to the trial court‘s assessment of the credibility of witnesses. The trial judge is the one who hears the
testimony of the witnesses presented firsthand and sees their demeanor and body language. The trial judge,
therefore, can better determine if the witnesses are telling the truth being in the ideal position to weigh
conflicting testimonies. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JONATHAN "UTO" VELOSO y RAMA,
G.R. No. 188849, 13 February 2013)

REPUBLIC ACT 9262:
Notably, while it is required that the offender has or had a sexual or dating relationship with the
offended woman, for R.A. 9262 to be applicable, it is not indispensable that the act of violence be a
consequence of such relationship. As correctly ruled by the RTC, it is immaterial whether the relationship had
ceased for as long as there is sufficient evidence showing the past or present existence of such relationship
between the offender and the victim when the physical harm was committed. (KARLO ANGELO
DABALOS y SAN DIEO v. REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, BRANCH 59, ANGELES CITY, et al., G.R.
NO. 193960, 7 January 2013)


EXTENT OF AUTHORITY OF THE
OMBUDSMAN TO FILE ADMINISTRATIVE CASE:

Although the Ombudsman is not precluded by Section 20(5) of R.A. 6770 from conducting the
investigation, the Ombudsman can no longer institute an administrative case against Andutan because the
latter was not a public servant at the time the case was filed. (OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN
v.ULDARICO P. ANDUTAN, JR., G.R. No. 164679, 27 July 2011)
BIGAMY:
The elements of the crime of bigamy are:
1. That the offender has been legally married.
2. That the marriage has not been legally dissolved or, in case his or her spouse is absent, the absent
spouse could not yet be presumed dead according to the Civil Code.
3. That he contracts a second or subsequent marriage.
4. That the second or subsequent marriage has all the essential requisites for validity. (ATILANO O.
NOLLORA, JR. v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 191425, 7 September 2011)

The elements of the crime of bigamy are: (a) the offender has been legally married; (b) the marriage
has not been legally dissolved or, in case his or her spouse is absent, the absent spouse could not yet be
presumed dead according to the Civil Code; (c) that he contracts a second or subsequent marriage; and (d)
the second or subsequent marriage has all the essential requisites for validity. The felony is consummated on
the celebration of the second marriage or subsequent marriage if the first marriage was still subsisting as the
same had not yet been annulled or declared void by a competent authority. (MERLINDA CIPRIANO
MONTAÑEZ v. LOURDES TAJOLOSA CIPRIANO, G.R. No. 181089, 22 October 2012)

GRAVE COERCION:

In the crime of grave coercion, violence through material force or such a display of it as would
produce intimidation and, consequently, control over the will of the offended party is an essential
ingredient. (JOSEPH ANTHONY M. ALEJANDRO, FIRDAUSI I.Y. ABBAS, CARMINA A. ABBAS
and MA. ELENA GO FRANCISCO v. ATTY. JOSE A. BERNAS, ATTY. MARIE LOURDES SIA-
BERNAS, FERNANDO AMOR, EDUARDO AGUILAR, JOHN DOE and PETER DOE, G.R. No.
179243, 7 September 2011)

MOTIVE, GENERALLY IMMATERIAL:
In every criminal case, the task of the prosecution is always two-fold, that is, (1) to prove beyond
reasonable doubt the commission of the crime charged; and (2) to establish with the same quantum of proof
the identity of the person or persons responsible therefor, because, even if the commission of the crime is a
given, there can be no conviction without the identity of the malefactor being likewise clearly ascertained.

Generally, the motive of the accused in a criminal case is immaterial and does not have to be proven.
Proof of the same, however, becomes relevant and essential when, as in this case, the identity of the assailant
is in question. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. HERMOGENES DE GUZMAN, G.R. No. 192250, 11
July 2012)

ROBBERY WITH HOMICIDE:

Robbery with homicide occurs when, by reason or on occasion of the robbery, the crime of homicide
shall have been committed. In Article 249 of the RPC, any person who shall kill another shall be deemed
guilty of homicide. Homicide, as used in robbery with homicide, is to be understood in its generic sense to
include parricide and murder. Theft, on the other hand, is committed by any person who, with intent to gain
but without violence against or intimidation of persons nor force upon things, shall take the personal
property of another without the latter‘s consent. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. CESAR
CONCEPCION y BULANIO, G.R. No. 200922, 18 July 2012)

In charging Robbery with Homicide, the onus probandiis to establish: (a) the taking of personal
property with the use of violence or intimidation against a person; (b) the property belongs to another; (c) the
taking is characterized with animus lucrandior with intent to gain; and (d) on the occasion or by reason of the
robbery, the crime of homicide, which is used in the generic sense, was committed.

Taking as an element of robbery means depriving the offended party of ownership of the thing taken
with the character of permanency. The taking should not be under a claim of ownership. One who takes the
property openly and avowedly under claim of title offered in good faith is not guilty of robbery even though
the claim of ownership is untenable. (LILY SY v. HON. SECRETARY OF JUSTICE MERCEDITAS
GUTIERREZ, et al., G.R. No. 171579, 14 November 2012)

CIRCUMSTANTIAL EVIDENCE:

Circumstantial evidence suffices to convict an accused only if the circumstances proven constitute an
unbroken chain which leads to one fair and reasonable conclusion pointing to the accused, to the exclusion of
all others, as the guilty person. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. RAUL BERIBER y FUENTES, G.R.
No. 195243, 29 August 2012)

Circumstantial evidence is sufficient for conviction when the concurrence of the following factors
obtain: (a) there is more than one circumstance; (b) the facts from which the inferences are derived have been
proven; and (c) the combination of all the circumstances is such as would prove the crime beyond reasonable
doubt. These circumstances and facts must be absolutely incompatible with any reasonable hypothesis
propounding the innocence of the accused. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. GERALD SORIANO
alias “PEDRO”, G.R. No. 191271, 13 March 2013)

MINOR INCONSISTENCIES DO
NO IMPAIR CREDIBILITY:
Criminal law jurisprudence invariably holds that inconsistencies in the testimonies of witnesses on
minor details do not impair their credibility. The totality of the prosecution‘s evidence sufficiently proved the
identity of the seized prohibited items despite the intervening changes in their custody and possession. The
chain of custody from the time items were confiscated and eventually marked until they were presented
during trial has likewise been established. This Court finds no circumstance whatsoever that would raise any
doubt as to the identity, integrity and evidentiary value of the items subject matter of this case. (PEOPLE OF
THE PHILIPPINES v. JAIME FERNANDEZ y HERTEZ a.k.a. “DEBON”, G.R. No. 188841, 9 March
2013)

COMPLEX CRIMES:

In a complex crime, two or more crimes are actually committed, however, in the eyes of the law and
in the conscience of the offender they constitute only one crime, thus, only one penalty is imposed. There are
two kinds of complex crime. The first is known as compound crime, or when a single act constitutes two or
more grave or less grave felonies while the other is known as complex crime proper, or when an offense is a
necessary means for committing the other. The classic example of the first kind is when a single bullet results
in the death of two or more persons. A different rule governs where separate and distinct acts result in a
number killed. Deeply rooted is the doctrine that when various victims expire from separate shots, such acts
constitute separate and distinct crimes. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. WENCESLAO NELMIDA
"ESLAO" and RICARDO AJOK "PORDOY", G.R. No. 184500, 11 September 2012)

DEFENSE OF ALIBI/DENIAL:
Alibi is inherently weak and unreliable in the face of positive and credible testimonies of prosecution
witnesses. It becomes less plausible, especially when it is corroborated by relatives and friends who may not
be impartial witnesses. Physical impossibility is essential in the defense of alibi. Physical impossibility refers to
distance and the facility of access between the situs criminis and the location of the accused when the crime was
committed. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. BENJAMIN BRAVO y ESTABILLO, G.R. No. 185282,
24 September 2012)

The rule is well settled that in order for alibi to prosper, it must be demonstrated that the person
charged with the crime was not only somewhere else when the offense was committed, but was so far away
that it would have been physically impossible to have been at the place of the crime or its immediate vicinity
at the time of its commission. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. EDGAR BALQUEDRA, G.R. No.
191192, 22 August 2012)

SELF-DEFENSE:
On the claim of self-defense, the accused had to prove the following essential elements: (1) unlawful
aggression on the part of the victim; (2) reasonable necessity of the means employed to prevent or repel such
aggression; and (3) lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person resorting to self-defense. A person
who invokes self-defense has the burden of proof. He must prove all the elements of self-defense. However,
the most important of all the elements is unlawful aggression on the part of the victim. Unlawful aggression
must be proved first in order for self-defense to be successfully pleaded, whether complete or incomplete.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. EFREN LAURIO y ROSALES, G.R. No. 182523, 13 September
2012)
―Physical impossibility‖ refers to the distance between the place where the appellant was when the
crime transpired and the place where it was committed, as well as the facility of access between the two
places. Where there is the least chance for the accused to be present at the crime scene, the defense of alibi
must fail. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MARK JOSEPH R. ZAPUIZ, G.R. No. 199713, 20
February 2013)

Verily, to invoke self-defense successfully, there must have been an unlawful and unprovoked attack
that endangered the life of the accused, who was then forced to inflict severe wounds upon the assailant by
employing reasonable means to resist the attack.

The means employed by a person claiming self-defense must be commensurate to the nature and the
extent of the attack sought to be averted, and must be rationally necessary to prevent or repel an unlawful
aggression. (SIMON A. FLORES v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 181354, 27 February 2013)

VOLUNTARY SURRENDER,
MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCE:
For voluntary surrender to be appreciated, the following requisites should be present: (1) the
offender has not been actually arrested; (2) the offender surrendered himself to a person in authority or the
latter's agent; and (3) the surrender was voluntary. The essence of voluntary surrender is spontaneity and the
intent of the accused to give himself up and submit himself to the authorities either because he acknowledges
his guilt or he wishes to save the authorities the trouble and expense that may be incurred for his search and
capture. (RODOLFO BELBIS, JR. and ALBERTO BRUCALES v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R.
No. 181052, 14 November 2012)

ARREST, SEARCH OR SEIZURE:
An accused is estopped from assailing any irregularity of his arrest if he fails to raise this issue or to
move for the quashal of the information against him on this ground before arraignment. Any objection
involving a warrant of arrest or the procedure by which the court acquired jurisdiction over the person of the
accused must be made before he enters his plea; otherwise, the objection is deemed waived.

What constitutes a reasonable or unreasonable warrantless search or seizure is purely a judicial
question, determinable from the uniqueness of the circumstances involved, including the purpose of the
search or seizure, the presence or absence of probable cause, the manner in which the search and seizure was
made, the place or thing searched, and the character of the articles procured. (ABRAHAM MICLAT, JR. y
CERBO v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 176077, 31 August 2011)

INSANITY, EXEMPTING CIRCUMSTANCE:
The exempting circumstance of insanity is not easily available to an accused as a successful defense.
Insanity is the exception rather than the rule in the human condition. Under Article 800 of the Civil Code, the
presumption is that every human is sane. Anyone who pleads the exempting circumstance of insanity bears
the burden of proving it with clear and convincing evidence. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. EDWIN
ISLA y ROSSELL, G.R. No. 199875, 21 November 2012)

ILLEGAL RECRUITMENT, ESTAFA:

Unlike in illegal recruitment where profit is immaterial, a conviction for estafa requires a clear
showing that the offended party parted with his money or property upon the offender‘s false pretenses, and
suffered damage thereby. In every criminal prosecution, the State must prove beyond reasonable doubt all the
elements of the crime charged and the complicity or participation of the accused. It is imperative, therefore,
that damage as an element of estafa under Article 315, paragraph 2(a) be proved as conclusively as the offense
itself. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MELISSA CHUA a.k.a “CLARITA NG CHUA”, G.R. No.
187052, 13 September 2012)

NOTICE OF DISHONOR:

A notice of dishonor received by the maker or drawer of the check is indispensable before a
conviction can ensue. The notice of dishonor may be sent by the offended party or the drawee bank. The
notice must be in writing. A mere oral notice to pay a dishonored check will not suffice. The lack of a written
notice is fatal for the prosecution.

Considering that the sending of the written notices of dishonor had been done by registered mail, the
registry return receipts by themselves were not proof of the service on the petitioner without being
accompanied by the authenticating affidavit of the person or persons who had actually mailed the written
notices of dishonor, or without the testimony in court of the mailer or mailers on the fact of mailing. The
authentication by affidavit of the mailer or mailers was necessary in order for the giving of the notices of
dishonor by registered mail to be regarded as clear proof of the giving of the notices of dishonor to predicate
the existence of the second element of the offense. (AMADA RESTERIO v. PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 177438, 24 September 2012)

ARSON:
In the prosecution for arson, proof of the crime charged is complete where the evidence establishes:
(1) the corpus delicti, that is, a fire because of criminal agency; and (2) the identity of the defendant as the one
responsible for the crime. In arson, the corpus delicti rule is satisfied by proof of the bare fact of the fire and of
it having been intentionally caused.

PRINCIPAL BY INDISPENSABLE COOPERATION:

To be a principal by indispensable cooperation, one must participate in the criminal resolution, a
conspiracy or unity in criminal purpose and cooperation in the commission of the offense by performing
another act without which it would not have been accomplished. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v.
DINA DULAY y PASCUAL, G.R. No. 193854, 24 September 2012)

ROBBERY:
The crime of robbery under Article 293 of the Revised Penal Code has the following elements: (a)
intent to gain, (b) unlawful taking, (c) personal property belonging to another, and (d) violence against or
intimidation of person or force upon things. Under Article 296 of the same Code, "when more than three
armed malefactors take part in the commission of robbery, it shall be deemed to have been committed by a
band."
KIDNAPPING:
As for the crime of kidnapping, the following elements, as provided in Article 267 of the Revised
Penal Code, must be proven: (a) a person has been deprived of his liberty, (b) the offender is a private
individual, and (c) the detention is unlawful. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JOVEL S. APOLE, et al.,
G.R. No. 189820, 10 October 2012)

CONSPIRACY:

In order for conspiracy to exist, there need not be a prior agreement among the assailants. It would
suffice that at the moment of its perpetration; the accused had the same purpose and were united in its
execution. There is no need for direct evidence proving conspiracy for the community of their perpetration
may be deduced from their individual acts. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPINES v. MARCELO
BUSTAMANTE y ZAPANTA, NEIL BALUYOT y TABISORA, RICHARD DELOS TRINO y
SARCILLA, HERMINIO JOSE y MONSON, EDWIN SORIANO y DELA CRUZ and ELMER
SALVADOR y JAVALE, G.R. No. 172357, 19 March 2010)
There is conspiracy when two or more persons come to an agreement concerning the commission of
a felony and decide to commit it. Actions indicating close personal association and shared sentiment among
the accused can prove its presence. Proof that the perpetrators met beforehand and decided to commit the
crime is not necessary as long as their acts manifest a common design and oneness of purpose.
While the existence of conspiracy among appellants in selling shabu was duly established, there was
no proof that appellants were a group organized for the general purpose of committing crimes for gain,
which is the essence of the aggravating circumstance of organized/syndicated group under Article 62 of the
Revised Penal Code. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ASIA MUSA y PINASILO, ARA
MONONGAN y PAPAO, FAISAH ABAS y MAMA, and MIKE SOLALO y MLOK, G.R. No. 199735, 24
October 2012)

At any rate, conspirators are persons who, under Article 8 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC), ―come
to an agreement concerning the commission of a felony and decide to commit it.‖ Because witnesses are
rarely present when several accused come to an agreement to commit a crime, such agreement is usually
inferred from their ―concerted actions‖ while committing it. On the other hand, accomplices, according to
Article 18 of the RPC, are the persons who, not being included in Article 17 which identifies who are
principals, ―cooperate in the execution of the offense by previous or simultaneous acts.‖
It is settled that direct proof is not essential to establish conspiracy as it may be inferred from the
collective acts of the accused before, during and after the commission of the crime. It can be presumed from
and proven by acts of the accused themselves when the said acts point to a joint purpose, design, concerted
action, and community of interests. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. P/SUPT. ARTEMIO E.
LAMSEN, et al., G.R. No. 198338, 20 February 2013)

ABUSE OF SUPERIOR STRENGTH:
There is abuse of superior strength when the aggressors purposely use excessive force rendering the
victim unable to defend himself. The notorious inequality of forces creates an unfair advantage for the
aggressor. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. CHITO NAZARENO, G.R. No. 196434, 24 October 2012)

LIBEL:
Not only is the person who published, exhibited or caused the publication or exhibition of any
defamation in writing shall be responsible for the same, all other persons who participated in its publication
are liable, including the editor or business manager of a daily newspaper, magazine or serial publication, who
shall be equally responsible for the defamations contained therein to the same extent as if he were the author
thereof. (LITO BAUTISTA and JIMMY ALCANTARA v. SHARON G. CUNETA-PANGILINAN, G.R.
No. 189754, 24 October 2012)


UNLAWFUL AGGRESSION:

Unlawful aggression must be proved first in order for self-defense to be successfully pleaded,
whether complete or incomplete. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MARCIAL MALICDEM, G.R. No.
184601, 12 November 2012)

TECHNICAL MALVERSATION:

The crime of technical malversation as penalized under Article 220 of the Revised Penal Code has
three elements: a) that the offender is an accountable public officer; b) that he applies public funds or
property under his administration to some public use; and c) that the public use for which such funds or
property were applied is different from the purpose for which they were originally appropriated by law or
ordinance. (ARNOLD JAMES M. YSIDORO v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 192330, 14
November 2012)

TREACHERY:
There is treachery when the offender commits any of the crimes against the person, employing
means, methods or forms in the execution thereof which tend directly and specially to insure its execution,
without risk to himself arising from the defense which the offended party might make. (PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. RICHARD NAPALIT y DE GUZMAN, G.R. No. 181247, 19 March 2010)

There is treachery, according to Article 14, paragraph 16 of the Revised Penal Code, when the
offender employs means, methods, or forms in attacking his victim, which tend directly and specially to
insure its execution, without risk to himself arising from the defense which the offended party might make.
(PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JOEL ARTAJO, G.R. No. 198050, 14 November 2012)

There is treachery when the attack against an unarmed victim is so sudden that he had clearly no
inkling of what the assailant was about to do. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MARK JOSEPH R.
ZAPUIZ, G.R. No. 199713, 20 February 2013)

The Court has time and again declared that ―the essence of treachery is a deliberate and sudden
attack, affording the hapless, unarmed and unsuspecting victim no chance to resist or to escape,‖ and that it
may still exist even if the attack is frontal so long as the same is sudden and unexpected. (PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES v. BENJAMIN PETELUNA and ABUNDIO BINONDO, G.R. No. 187048, 23 January
2013)

Theft, Estafa, distinguished:
The principal distinction between the two crimes is that in theft the thing is taken while in estafa the
accused receives the property and converts it to his own use or benefit. However, there may be theft even if
the accused has possession of the property. If he was entrusted only with the material or physical (natural) or
de facto possession of the thing, his misappropriation of the same constitutes theft, but if he has the juridical
possession of the thing his conversion of the same constitutes embezzlement or estafa. (PARAMOUNT
INSURANCE CORPORATION vs. SPOUSES YVES AND MARIA TERESA REMONDUELAZ, G.R.
No. 173773, 28 November 2012)

DESCRIPTION OF THE CRIME CHARGED,
CONTROLLING IN AN INFORMATION:

What is controlling in an Information should not be the title of the complaint, nor the designation of
the offense charged or the particular law or part thereof allegedly violated, these being, by and large, mere
conclusions of law made by the prosecutor, but the description of the crime charged and the particular facts
therein recited. In addition, the Information need not use the language of the statute in stating the acts or
omissions complained of as constituting the offense. What is required is that the acts or omissions
complained of as constituting the offense are stated in ordinary and concise language sufficient to enable a
person of common understanding to know the offense charged.

The character of the crime is not determined by the caption or preamble of the information nor from
the specification of the provision of law alleged to have been violated, xxx but by the recital of the ultimate
facts and circumstances in the complaint or information. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. PATRICIO
RAYON, SR., G.R. No. 194236, 30 January 2013)

INSTIGATION v. ENTRAPMENT:
Instigation is the means by which the accused is lured into the commission of the offense charged in
order to prosecute him. On the other hand, entrapment is the employment of such ways and means for the
purpose of trapping or capturing a lawbreaker. Thus, in instigation, officers of the law or their agents incite,
induce, instigate or lure an accused into committing an offense which he or she would otherwise not commit
and has no intention of committing. But in entrapment, the criminal intent or design to commit the offense
charged originates in the mind of the accused, and law enforcement officials merely facilitate the
apprehension of the criminal by employing ruses and schemes; thus, the accused cannot justify his or her
conduct. In instigation, where law enforcers act as co-principals, the accused will have to be acquitted. But
entrapment cannot bar prosecution and conviction. As has been said, instigation is a ―trap for the unwary
innocent,‖ while entrapment is a ―trap for the unwary criminal.‖ Applying the foregoing, we declare that
Bartolome was not arrested following an instigation for him to commit the crime. Instead, he was caught in
flagrante delicto during an entrapment through buy-bust. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. NOEL
BARTOLOME y BAJO, G.R. No. 191726, 6 February 2013)

Enshrined in the fundamental law is a person‘s right against unwarranted intrusions by the
government. While it is true that the legality of arrest depends upon the reasonable discretion of the officer or
functionary to whom the law at the moment leaves the decision to characterize the nature of the act or deed
of the person for the urgent purpose of suspending his liberty, this should not be exercised in a whimsical
manner, else a person‘s liberty be subjected to ubiquitous abuse. (RAMON MARTINEZ y GOCO v.
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, G.R. No. 198694, 13 February 2013)

ESTAFA:
Deceit is the false representation of a matter of fact whether by words or conduct, by false or
misleading allegations, or by concealment of that which should have been disclosed which deceives or is
intended to deceive another so that he shall act upon it to his legal injury.

Only those who formed and manage associations that receive contributions from the general public
who misappropriated the contributions can commit syndicated estafa. (RAFAEL H. GALVEZ and
KATHERINE L. GUY v. ASIA UNITED BANK/ASIA UNITED BANK Vs. GILBERT, et al., GILBERT
GUY, et al. v. ASIA UNITED BANK, G.R. Nos. 187919, 187979 & 188030, 20 February 2013)

ACCOMPLICES:
Accomplices do not decide whether the crime should be committed; but they assent to the plan and
cooperate in its accomplishment. (PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES and MIRIAM RUTH T. MAGSINO v.
PO1 RICARDO EUSEBIO, SPO2 ROMEO ISIDRO, and JOJIT GEORGE CONTRERAS, G.R. No. 182152,
25 February 2013)