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Anti-Rape Laws in the Philippines

Rape is generally defined as the act of having carnal knowledge of a woman by a man, forcibly and against the formers will, or without conscious permission, or where permission has been obtained by force or fear of immediate harm. (Evans v. State, 21S.E 2nd 336, 337, 47 Ga. App. 631). Before September 30, 1997, the Revised Penal Code defined rape as as an act committed by having carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the following circumstances: by using force or intimidation; when the woman is deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious; and when the woman is under twelve years of age, even though neither of the circumstances mentioned in the two next preceding paragraphs shall be present. (Revised Penal Code, Article 335) Under the old provisions of the Code, the crime of rape was considered as a Crime Against Chastity. This implies that a crime of rape can only be committed to chaste women or in its simplest term, virgin women. This categorization gave more emphasis to the loss of chastity or honor rather than a violation of a womans being. It was also considered a private crime, thus, only the injured party or specific family members could file a complaint against the perpetrator. It belonged to crimes such as adultery, concubinage, acts of lasciviousness, seduction, corruption of minors and white slave trade. Because of the strong campaign from the feminist groups, who wanted to emphasize the violent nature of the crime of rape, the Philippine Congress passed the Anti-Rape Law of 1997 on September 30, 1997. The repealing law expanded the definition of crime of rape and re-classified it as a crime against persons. Thus, it now belongs to the same category as parricide, murder, homicide, infanticide, abortion, and physical injuries among others, which had physical harm as its intent. This was a departure from its former nature as crime which had lust as a motivating intent for its commission. The law introduced other significant innovations other than the re-classification:
1. Marital rape was impliedly recognized;

2. An additional means or committing rape was added: by fraudulent machination or grave abuse of authority; 3. Sexual assault was included as a crime of rape. It was characterized as an act effected by inserting a penis into another persons mouth or anal orifice, or any instrument or object, into the genital or anal orifice, of another person. Under this new mode, a woman may now be charged of raping another person or against a man. 4. Departing from the old law which requires a tenacious resistance characterized by determined and persistent physical struggle to constitute as a resistance against rape,

the new law only requires any physical overt act in any degree from the victim as an admissible evidence of lack of consent.

Case Illustration: Statutory Rape and Sexual Assault People of the Philippines vs Jaime Olaybar G.R. No. 150630-31 October 1, 2003 Vitug, J. Facts: Appellant Jaime Olaybar y Odtuhan, a.k.a. Jimmy, was charged with two counts of rape, the first for statutory rape under the first paragraph of Article 266-A and the second for rape by means of sexual assault under the second paragraph of the article. Rose Ann Into y Avenido, an eight-year old child, lives with her family at 2297 F.B. Harrison Street, Pasay City On 05 September 2000, around seven oclock in the evening, Rose Ann was playing with her friends when Olaybar brought her to a parked jeepney in the nearby parking lot. Inside the jeepney, Olaybar made Rose Ann lie down and had his penis inserted into her vagina. After a while, Olaybar made her sit on his lap and put his penis inside her anus. That night, when brought home by Olaybar, Rose Ann told her mother, Rea, that Olaybar molested her. Rea confronted Olaybar but the latter denied having done anything to Rose Ann. Rea warned Olaybar never to come near Rose Ann again. The following evening, on 06 September 2000, between seven oclock and seven-thirty, Olaybar called Rose Ann and, despite the warning made the previous night, he again brought her to a parked jeepney, made her sit on his lap and inserted his penis into her anus. He then escorted her home. Rose Ann, just as before, told her mother of what had transpired. Rea confronted Olaybar but the latter once more denied any wrongdoing. Rea sought the help of one Roger Siobert and, this time, Olaybar admitted to Roger what he had done. Rea went to the police to report the incident. When brought to the hospital on 07 September 2000, Rose Ann was examined by Dr. Merle P. Tan of the Child Protection Unit of the UP-PGH. Genital findings show clear evidence of blunt force or penetrating trauma. Issues: THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN CONVICTING THE ACCUSED-APPELLANT OF RAPE WHEN THE LATTERS GUILT WAS NOT PROVEN BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT. Held: The Supreme Court found Jaime Olaybar y Odtuhan guilty, on two counts, of rape. Mere denial without any strong evidence to support it, can scarcely overcome the positive declaration by the child-victim of the identity and involvement of appellant in the crimes attributed to him. The defense of alibi is likewise unavailing. It is not enough, in order that alibi might prosper, to prove that the accused has been somewhere else during the commission of the crime; it must also be shown that it would have been impossible for him to be anywhere within the vicinity of the crime scene.In this case, appellant himself has admitted being just around the neighborhood at the time. Anent the often-invoked claim that that it would have been impossible for appellant to bring and molest the victim to the jeepney in a public place and in the presence of many people, the Court would not need to belabor further that rape has been known to be committed not only in seclusion

but also in places where people congregate, such as in a park, along the roadside, within school premises, inside an occupied house or even in a room where there are other people around. Finally, the Court finds it much too flimsy and scarcely with any sense for appellant to contend that the charges against him have been filed on account simply of Rose Anns family being resentful of vehicles being allowed to park nearby their area.

Bibliography: Online Resources Chan Robles Law Library. The Anti-Rape Law of 1997. [Retrieved on August 21, 2012]

Fernando, E. (2010). Rape in Philippine Jurisprudence. [Retrieved on August 21, 2012] Herrington, Don A. Concept Nature and Essence of Rape. [Retrieved on August 21, 2012] Philippine Revised Penal Code Articles 335 When and How is Rape Committed. [Retrieved on August 21, 2012] Wikipilipinas. Anti Rape Law of 1997 title=Republic_Act_No._8353 [Retrieved on August 21, 2012]