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Secretary of Justice v.

Lantion
322 SCRA 160 (2000)

FACTS:
On June 18, 1999 the Department of Justice received from the Department of Foreign Affairs a request
for the extradition of private respondent Mark Jimenez to the U.S. The
Grand Jury Indictment, the warrant for his arrest, and other supporting documents for said extradition
were attached along with the request. Charges include:
1. Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud the US;
2. Attempt to evade or defeat tax;
3. Fraud by wire, radio, or television;
4. False statement or entries; and
5. Election contribution in name of another.

The Department of Justice, through a designated panel proceeded with the technical evaluation and
assessment of the extradition treaty which they found having matters needed to be addressed.
Respondent, then requested for copies of all the documents included in the extradition request and for
him to be given ample time to assess it. The Secretary of Justice denied request on the following
grounds:
1. He found it premature to secure him copies prior to the completion of the evaluation. At that
point in time, the DOJ is in the process of evaluating whether the procedures and requirements
under the relevant law (PD 1069—Philippine Extradition Law) and treaty (RP-US Extradition
Treaty) have been complied with by the Requesting Government. Evaluation by the DOJ of the
documents is not a preliminary investigation like in criminal cases making the constitutionally
guaranteed rights of the accused in criminal prosecution inapplicable;
2. The U.S. requested for the prevention of unauthorised disclosure of the information in the
documents; and
3. Finally, the country is bound to the Vienna convention on the law of treaties such that every
treaty in force is binding upon the parties.

The respondent filed for petition of mandamus, certiorari, and prohibition. The RTC of NCR ruled in
favour of the respondent. Secretary of Justice was made to issue a copy of the requested papers, as well
as conducting further proceedings.

ISSUES:
I. Whether or not private is respondent entitled to the two basic due process rights of notice and
hearing.
II. Whether or not this entitlement constitutes a breach of the legal commitments and obligation
of the Philippine Government under the RP-US Treaty.
III. WON there is any conflict between private respondent’s basic due process rights and the
provisions of the RP-US Extradition treaty.

HELD:
I. Section 2(a) of PD 1086 defines extradition as “the removal of an accused from the Philippines
with the object of placing him at the disposal of foreign authorities to enable
the requesting state or government to hold him in connection with any criminal investigation
directed against him in connection with any criminal investigation directed against him or the
execution of a penalty imposed on him under the penal or criminal law of the requesting state
or government.” Although the inquisitorial power exercised by the Department of Justice as an
administrative agency due to the failure of the DFA to comply lacks any judicial discretion, it
primarily sets the wheels for the extradition process which may ultimately result in the
deprivation of the liberty of the prospective extradite. This deprivation can be effected at two
stages: The provisional arrest of the prospective extradite pending the submission of the request
and the temporary arrest of the prospective extradite during the pendency of the extradition
petition in court. Clearly, there is an impending threat to a prospective extraditee’s liberty as
early as during the evaluation stage. Because of such consequences, the evaluation process is
akin to an administrative agency conducting an investigative proceeding, the consequences of
which are essentially criminal since such technical assessment sets off or commences the
procedure for and ultimately the deprivation of liberty of a prospective extradite. In essence,
therefore, the evaluation process partakes of the nature of a criminal investigation. There are
certain constitutional rights that are ordinarily available only in criminal prosecution. But the
Court has ruled in other cases that where the investigation of an administrative proceeding may
result in forfeiture of life, liberty, or property, the administrative proceedings are deemed
criminal or penal, and such forfeiture partakes the nature of a penalty. In the case at bar, similar
to a preliminary investigation, the evaluation stage of the extradition proceedings which may
result in the filing of an information against the respondent, can possibly lead to his arrest, and
to the deprivation of his liberty. Thus, the extraditee must be accorded due process rights of
notice and hearing according to Art. 3 sec 14(1) and (2), as well as Art. 3 sec 7—the right of the
people to information on matters of public concern and the corollary right to access to official
records and documents.

The court held that the evaluation process partakes of the nature of a criminal investigation,
having consequences which will result in deprivation of liberty of the prospective
extradite. A favourable action in an extradition request exposes a person to eventual
extradition to a foreign country, thus exhibiting the penal aspect of the process.

The evaluation process itself is like a preliminary investigation since both procedures may have
the same result – the arrest and imprisonment of the respondent. The basic rights of notice and
hearing are applicable in criminal, civil and administrative proceedings. Nonobservance
of these rights will invalidate the proceedings. Individuals are entitled to be notified of any
pending case affecting their interests, and upon notice, may claim the right
to appear therein and present their side. Rights to notice and hearing: Dispensable in 3 cases:
a. When there is an urgent need for immediate action (preventive suspension in
administrative charges, padlocking filthy restaurants, cancellation of passport);
b. Where there is tentativeness of administrative action, and the respondent is not
prevented from enjoying the right to notice and hearing at a later time (summary
distraint and levy of the property of a delinquent taxpayer, replacement of an
appointee); and
c. Twin rights have been offered, but the right to exercise them had not been claimed.
II. The U.S. and the Philippines share mutual concern about the suppression and punishment of
crime in their respective jurisdictions. Both states accord common due process protection to
their respective citizens. The administrative investigation doesn’t fall under the three exceptions
to the due process of notice and hearing in the Section 3 Rules 112 of the Rules of Court.
III. Doctrine of incorporation under international law, as applied in most countries, decrees that
rules of international law are given equal standing with, but are not superior to national
legislative acts. Treaty can repeal statute and statute can repeal treaty. No conflict. Veil of
secrecy is lifted during trial. Request should impose veil at any stage.

Petition dismissed for lack of merit.

Kapunan, separate concurring opinion:
While the evaluation process conducted by the DOJ is not exactly a preliminary investigation of
criminal cases, it is akin to a preliminary investigation because it involves the basic constitutional
rights of the person sought to be extradited. A person ordered extradited is arrested, forcibly
taken from his house, separated from his family and delivered to a foreign state. His rights of
abode, to privacy, liberty and pursuit of happiness are taken away from him—a fate as harsh
and cruel as a conviction of a criminal offense. For this reason, he is entitled to have access to
the evidence against him and the right to controvert them. Puno, dissenting: Case at bar does
not involve guilt or innocence of an accused but the interpretation of an extradition treaty
where at stake if our government’s international obligation to surrender to a foreign state a
citizen of its own so he can be tried for an alleged offense committed within that jurisdiction.
Panganiban, dissenting: Instant petition refers only to the evaluation stage.


COMMUNICATION MATERIALS AND DESIGN, INC et al v.CA et al.
G.R. No. 102223
August 22, 1996
FACTS:
Petitioners COMMUNICATION MATERIALS AND DESIGN, INC., (CMDI) and ASPAC MULTI-TRADE
INC., (ASPAC) are both domestic corporations. Private Respondents ITEC, INC. and/or ITEC,
INTERNATIONAL, INC. (ITEC) are corporations duly organised and existing under the laws of the
State of Alabama, USA. There is no dispute that ITEC is a foreign corporation not licensed to do
business in the Philippines.
ITEC entered into a contract with ASPAC referred to as “Representative Agreement”. Pursuant
to the contract, ITEC engaged ASPAC as its “exclusive representative” in the Philippines for the
sale of ITEC’s products, in consideration of which, ASPAC was paid a stipulated commission.
Through a “License Agreement” entered into by the same parties later on, ASPAC was able to
incorporate and use the name “ITEC” in its own name. Thus, ASPAC Multi-Trade, Inc. became
legally and publicly known as ASPAC-ITEC (Philippines).
One year into the second term of the parties’ Representative Agreement, ITEC decided to
terminate the same, because petitioner ASPAC allegedly violated its contractual commitment as
stipulated in their agreements. ITEC charges the petitioners and another Philippine Corporation,
DIGITAL BASE COMMUNICATIONS, INC. (DIGITAL), the President of which is likewise petitioner
Aguirre, of using knowledge and information of ITEC’s products specifications to develop their
own line of equipment and product support, which are similar, if not identical to ITEC’s own,
and offering them to ITEC’s former customer.
The complaint was filed with the RTC-Makati by ITEC, INC. Defendants filed a MTD the
complaint on the following grounds:
(1) That plaintiff has no legal capacity to sue as it is a foreign corporation doing business
in the Philippines without the required BOI authority and SEC license, and
(2) That plaintiff is simply engaged in forum shopping which justifies the application
against it of the principle of “forum non conveniens”.
The MTD was denied.
Petitioners elevated the case to the respondent CA on a Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition
under Rule 65 of the Revised ROC. It was dismissed as well. MR denied, hence this Petition for
Review on Certiorari under Rule 45.


ISSUES:
I. Whether or not the Philippine court acquired jurisdiction over the person of the
petitioner corporation, despite allegations of lack of capacity to sue because of non-
registration.
II. Whether or not the Philippine court should give due course to the suit or dismiss it, on
the principle of forum non convenience.
HELD:
I. We are persuaded to conclude that ITEC had been “engaged in” or “doing business” in
the Philippines for some time now. This is the inevitable result after a scrutiny of the
different contracts and agreements entered into by ITEC with its various business
contacts in the country. Its arrangements, with these entities indicate convincingly that
ITEC is actively engaging in business in the country.
A foreign corporation doing business in the Philippines may sue in Philippine Courts
although not authorised to do business here against a Philippine citizen or entity who
had contracted with and benefited by said corporation. To put it in another way, a party
is estopped to challenge the personality of a corporation after having acknowledged the
same by entering into a contract with it. And the doctrine of estoppel to deny corporate
existence applies to a foreign as well as to domestic corporations. One who has dealt
with a corporation of foreign origin as a corporate entity is estopped to deny its
corporate existence and capacity.
In Antam Consolidated Inc. vs. CA et al. we expressed our chagrin over this commonly
used scheme of defaulting local companies which are being sued by unlicensed foreign
companies not engaged in business in the Philippines to invoke the lack of capacity to
sue of such foreign companies. Obviously, the same ploy is resorted to by ASPAC to
prevent the injunctive action filed by ITEC to enjoin petitioner from using knowledge
possibly acquired in violation of fiduciary arrangements between the parties.
II. Petitioner’s insistence on the dismissal of this action due to the application, or non-
application, of the private international law rule of forum non conveniens defies well-
settled rules of fair play. According to petitioner, the Philippine Court has no venue to
apply its discretion whether to give cognisance or not to the present action, because it
has not acquired jurisdiction over the person of the plaintiff in the case, the latter
allegedly having no personality to sue before Philippine Courts. This argument is
misplaced because the court has already acquired jurisdiction over the plaintiff in the
suit, by virtue of his filing the original complaint. And as we have already observed,
petitioner is not at liberty to question plaintiff’s standing to sue, having already acceded
to the same by virtue of its entry into the Representative Agreement referred to earlier.
Thus, having acquired jurisdiction, it is now for the Philippine Court, based on the facts of
the case, whether to give due course to the suit or dismiss it, on the principle of forum
non convenience. Hence, the Philippine Court may refuse to assume jurisdiction in spite
of its having acquired jurisdiction. Conversely, the court may assume jurisdiction over
the case if it chooses to do so; provided, that the following requisites are met:
2) That the Philippine Court is one to which the parties may conveniently resort to;
3) That the Philippine Court is in a position to make an intelligent decision as to the
law and the facts; and,
4) That the Philippine Court has or is likely to have power to enforce its decision.
The aforesaid requirements having been met, and in view of the court’s disposition to
give due course to the questioned action, the matter of the present forum not being the
“most convenient” as a ground for the suit’s dismissal, deserves scant consideration.


American Airlines v. Court of Appeals
327 scra 482
FACTS:
Private respondent Amadeo Seno purchased from Singapore Airlines in Manila conjunction
tickets. In Geneva, the petitioner decided to forego his trip to Copenhagen, and go straight to
New York, private respondent exchanged the unused portion of the conjunction ticket from
International Air Transport Association clearing house in Geneva. Private respondent filed an
action for damages before the RTC of Cebu for the alleged embarrassent and mental anguish he
suffered at the Geneva Airport when the petitioner’s security officers prevented him from
boarding the plane, detained him for about an hour and allowed him to board the plane only
after all the passengers have boarded.
The petitioner’s theory is as follows: Under Art 28 (1) of the Warsaw convention an action for
damages must be brought at the option of the plaintiff either before the court of the 1)
domicile of the carrier; 2) the carrier’s principal place of business; 3) the place where the carrier
has a place of business through which the contract was made; 4) the place of destination. The
petitioner asserts that the Philippines is neither the domicile nor the principal place of business
of the defendant airline; nor is it the place of destination. As regards the third option of the
plaintiff, the petitioner contends that since the Philippines is not the place where the contract
of carriage was made between the parties herein, Philippine courts do not have jurisdiction
over this action for damages. The issuance of petitioner’s own ticket in Geneva in exchange for
the conjunction ticket issued by Singapore Airlines for the final leg of the private respondent’s
trip gave rise to a separate and distinct contract of carriage from that entered into by the
private respondent with Singapore Airlines in Manila.
Private respondent controverts the applicability of the Warsaw Convention in this case. He
posits that under Article 17 of the Warsaw Convention a carrier may be held liable for damages
if the "accident" occurred on board the airline or in the course of "embarking or disembarking"
from the carrier and that under Article 25 (1) thereof the provisions of the convention will not
apply if the damage is caused by the "willful misconduct" of the carrier. He argues that his
cause of action is based on the incident at the pre-departure area of the Geneva airport and not
during the process of embarking or disembarking from the carrier and that security officers of
the petitioner airline acted in bad faith. Accordingly, this case is released from the terms of the
Convention. Private respondent argues that assuming that the convention applies, his trip to
nine cities in different countries performed by different carriers under the conjunction tickets
issued in Manila by Singapore Airlines is regarded as a single transaction; as such the final leg of
his trip from Geneva to New York with the petitioner airline is part and parcel of the original
contract of carriage perfected in Manila. Thus, the third option of the plaintiff under Art. 28 (1)
e.g., where the carrier has a place of business through which the contract of carriage was made,
applies herein and the case was properly filed in the Philippines. The private respondent seeks
affirmance of the ruling of the lower courts that the petitioner acted as an agent of Singapore
Airlines under the IATA Rules and as an agent of the principal carrier the petitioner may be held
liable under the contract of carriage perfected in Manila, citing the judicial admission made by
the petitioner that it claimed the value of the unused portion of the private respondent’s
conjunction tickets from the IATA Clearing House in Geneva where the accounts of both airlines
are respectively credited and debited. Accordingly, the petitioner cannot now deny the contract
of agency with Singapore Airlines after it honored the conjunction tickets issued by the latter.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the Philippine courts have jurisdiction over the action for damages.

HELD:
The Supreme Court ruled that the case was properly filed in the Philippines. It held that the
petitioner acted as an agent of the Singapore Airlines under IATA rules and as an agent of the
principal carrier the petitioner may be held liable under contract of carriage in Manila.
The Warsaw Convention to which the Republic of the Philippines is a party and which has the
force and effect of law in this country applies to all international transportation of persons,
baggage or goods performed by an aircraft gratuitously or for hire. As enumerated in the
Preamble of the Convention, one of the objectives is "to regulate in a uniform manner the
conditions of international transportation by air". The contract of carriage entered into by the
private respondent with Singapore Airlines, and subsequently with the petitioner, to transport
him to nine cities in different countries with New York as the final destination is a contract of
international transportation and the provisions of the Convention automatically apply and
exclusively govern the rights and liabilities of the airline and its passengers. This includes
section 28 (1) which enumerates the four places where an action for damages may be brought.
The threshold issue of jurisdiction of Philippine courts under Art 28 (1) must first be resolved
before any pronouncements may be made on the liability of the carrier thereunder. The
objections raised by the private respondent that this case is released from the terms of the
Convention because the incident on which this action is predicated did not occur in the process
of embarking and disembarking from the carrier under Art 17and that the employees of the
petitioner airline acted with malice and bad faith under Art 25 (1) pertain to the merits of the
case which may be examined only if the action has first been properly commenced under the
rules on jurisdiction set forth in Art. 28 (1).
The Warsaw Convention Art. 1(3) clearly states that a contract of air transportation is taken as a
single operation whether it is founded on a single contract or a series of contracts. The number
of tickets issued does not detract from the oneness of the contract of carriage as long as the
parties regard the contract as a single operation. The evident purpose underlying this Article is
to promote international air travel by facilitating the procurement of a series of contracts for air
transportation through a single principal and obligating different airlines to be bound by one
contract of transportation. Petitioner’s acquiescence to take the place of the original
designated carrier binds it under the contract of carriage entered into by the private
respondent and Singapore Airlines in Manila.
The third option of the plaintiff under Art 28 (1) of the Warsaw Convention e.g., to sue in the
place of business of the carrier wherein the contract was made, is therefore, Manila, and
Philippine courts are clothed with jurisdiction over this case. We note that while this case was
filed in Cebu and not in Manila the issue of venue is no longer an issue as the petitioner is
deemed to have waived it when it presented evidence before the trial court.