68 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation G.R. No. 83589. March 13, 1991.

* RAMON FAROLAN as ACTING COMMISSIONER vs. OF CUSTOMS, and

Institute of Science and Technology that the same was pure oriented OPP, nonetheless, it is the duty of the Court to see to it that public officers are not hampered in the performance of their duties or in making decisions for fear of personal liability for damages due to honest mistake. Whatever damage they may have caused as a result of such an erroneous interpretation, if any at all, is in the nature of a damnum absque injuria. Mistakes concededly committed _______________ * SECOND DIVISION. VOL. 195, MARCH 13, 1991 Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation by public officers are not actionable absent any clear showing that they were motivated by malice or gross negligence amounting to bad faith. After all, ‚even under the law of public officers, the acts of the petitioners are protected by the presumption of good faith.‛ PETITION for certiorari to review the resolution of the Court of Appeals. Lantin, J. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. Dakila F. Castro & Associates for private respondent. SARMIENTO, J.: This petition for review on certiorari, instituted by the Solicitor General on any clear showing to that bad they were behalf of the public officers-petitioners, seek the nullification and setting aside of the Resolution1 dated May 25, 1988 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. No. SP-10509, entitled ‚Solmac Marketing Corporation vs. Ramon Farolan, public Acting Commissioner to pay of Customs, and in and Guillermo private Parayno, Chief of Customs Intelligence and Investigation Division,‛ which adjudged personal these officers solidarily Marketing their capacities respondent Solmac Corporation temperate

GUILLERMO PARAYNO, as CHIEF OF CUSTOMS INTELLIGENCE and INVESTIGATION DIVISION, petitioners, SOLMAC MARKETING CORPORATION, and COURT OF APPEALS, respondents. Damages; Good Faith, defined; Good faith refers to a state of the mind which is manifested by the acts of the individual concerned. It consists of the honest intention to abstain from taking an unconscionable and unscrupulous advantage of another.—The respondent court committed a reversible error in overruling the trial court’s finding that: x x x with reference to the claim of plaintiff to damages, actual and exemplary, and attorney’s fees, the Court finds it difficult to discredit or disregard totally the defendants’ defense of good faith premised on the excuse that they were all the time awaiting clarification of the Board of Investments on the matter: We hold that this finding of the trial court is correct for good faith is always presumed and it is upon him who alleges the contrary that the burden of proof lies. In Abando v. Lozada, we defined good faith as ‚refer[ring] to a state of the mind which is manifested by the acts of the individual concerned. It consists of the honest intention to abstain from taking an unconscionable and unscrupulous advantage of another. It is the opposite of fraud, and its absence should be established by convincing evidence.‛ Same; Same; Public Officers; Mistakes concededly committed by public officers are by not actionable or absent motivated malice gross negligence amounting faith.—But

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even granting that the petitioners committed a mistake in withholding the release of the subject importation because indeed it was composed of OPP film scraps, contrary to the evidence submitted by the National

damages in the sum of P100,000.00, exemplary damages in the sum of P50,000.00, and P25,000.00, as attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation. This challenged resolution of the respondent court modified its decision2 of July 27, 1987 by reducing into halves the original awards of P100,000.00 and of P100,000.00 in P50,000.00 for exemplary damages and attorney’s damages. (Strangely, the fees and litigation expenses, respectively, keeping intact the original grant the concept of temperate first name of petitioner Farolan stated in the assailed resolution, as well as in the decision, of the respondent court is ‚Damian‛ when it should be ‚Ramon‛, his correct given name. Strictly speaking, petitioner Ramon Farolan could not be held liable under these decision and resolution for he is not the one adjudged to pay the huge damages but a different person. _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation Nonetheless, that is of no moment now considering the disposition of this ponencia.) The relevant facts, as culled from the records, are as follows: At the time of the commission of the acts complained of by the private respondent, which was the subject of the latter’s petition for mandamus and injunction filed with the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Manila in Civil Case No. 84-23537, petitioner Ramon Farolan was then the Acting Commissioner of Customs while petitioner Guillermo Parayno was then the Acting Chief, Customs Intelligence and Investigation Division. They were thus sued in their official capacities as officers in the government as clearly indicated in the title of the case in the lower courts and even here in this Court. Nevertheless, they were both held personally

x.‛3 However, as adverted to at the outset, in the dispositive portion of the challenged resolution, the one held personally liable is a ‚Damian Farolan‛ and not the petitioner, Ramon Farolan. Also as earlier mentioned, we will ignore that gross error. Private respondent Solmac Marketing Corporation is a corporation

organized and existing under the laws of the Philippines. It was the assignee, transferee, and owner of an importation of Clojus Recycling Plastic Products of 202,204 kilograms of what is technically known as polypropylene film, valued at US$69,250.05. Polypropylene is a substance resembling polyethelyne which is one of a group of partially crystalline lightweight thermoplastics used chiefly in making fibers, films, and molded and extruded products.4 Without defect, polypropylene film is sold at a much higher price as prime quality film. Once rejected as defective due to blemishes, discoloration, defective winding, holes, etc., polypropylene film is sold at a relatively cheap price without guarantee or return, and the buyer takes the risk as to whether he can recover an average 30% to 50% usable matter.5 _______________ VOL. 195, MARCH 13, 1991 Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation This latter kind of polypropylene is known as OPP film waste/ scrap and this is what respondent SOLMAC claimed the Clojus shipment to be. The subject importation, consisting of seventeen (17) containers, arrived in December 1981. Upon application for entry, the Bureau of Customs asked respondent SOLMAC for its authority from any government agency to import the goods described in the bill of lading. Respondent SOLMAC presented a Board of Investment (BOI) authority for polypropylene film scrap. However, upon examination of the shipment by the National Institute of Science and Technology (NIST), it turned out that the fibers

2

liable for the awarded damages ‚(s)ince the detention of the goods by the defendants (petitioners herein) was irregular and devoid of legal basis, hence, not done in the regular performance of official duty x x

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of the importation were oriented in such a way that the materials were stronger than OPP film scrap.6 In other words, the Clojus shipment was not OPP film scrap, as declared by the assignee respondent SOLMAC to the Bureau under of Customs the of Letter and BOI Governor of which No. (LOI) Lilia is R. Bautista, if but not oriented prohibited, polypropylene importation Instructions restricted, 658-B.

Dakila Castro, counsel for the private respondent, and the BOI and the Bureau of Customs, on the other, ensued, to wit: 4. In a letter dated August 17, 1982, the BOI agreed that the subject imports may be released but that holes may be drilled on them by the Bureau of Customs prior to their release. 5. On January 20, 1983, (the late) Atty. Dakila Castro, (then) counsel of private respondent wrote to petitioner Commissioner Farolan of Customs asking first. 6. Atty. Dakila Castro then wrote a letter dated October 6, 1983, to BOI Governor Hermenigildo Zayco stressing the reasons why the subject importation should be released without drilling of holes. 7. On November 8, 1983, BOI Governor H. Zayco wrote a letter to the Bureau without of Customs of on stating 17, that the as to subject the the goods drilling may of be prior holes released to on the all drilling holes August inasmuch 1982 goods arrived for the release of the importation. The importation was not released, however, on the ground that holes had to be drilled on them

Specifically,

Sections 1 and 2 of LOI No. 658-B provide that: 1. The importation of cellophane shall be allowed only for quantities and types of cellophane that cannot be produced by Philippine Cellophane Film Corporation. The Board of Investments shall issue guidelines regulating such importations. 2. The Collector of Customs shall see to the apprehension of all illegal importations of cellophane and oriented polypropylene (OPP) and the dumping of imported stock lots of cellophane and OPP. Considering authorized that by the the BOI shipment and by was law, different petitioners from what had and been Farolan

Parayno

withheld the release of the subject importation. On June 7, 1982, petitioner Parayno, then Chief of Customs Intelligence and Investigation Division, wrote the BOI asking for the latter’s advice on whether or not the subject importation _______________ dated May 7, 1982; Original Record, 27. 6 Exhibit ‚5‛ for the defendants, now the petitioners herein; Original

endorsement

importations of waste/scrap films. 8. On February 1, 1984, petitioner Commissioner Farolan wrote the BOI requesting for definite guidelines regarding the disposition of importations of Oriented Polypropylene (OPP) and Polypropylene (PP) then being held at the Bureau of Customs. 9. On March 12, 1984, Minister Roberto Ongpin of Trade, the BOI

Record, 56. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation

Chairman, wrote his reply to petitioner Farolan x x x.8 (This reply of Minister Ongpin is copied in full infra.) On March 26, 1984, respondent Solmac filed the action for mandamus and injunction with the RTC as above mentioned. It prayed for the unconditional release of the subject importation. It also prayed for actual damages, exemplary damages, and attorney’s fees. As prayed for, the trial court issued a writ of preliminary injunction.

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may be released.7 A series of exchange of correspondence between the BOI and the Bureau of Customs, on one hand, and between the late

After hearing on the merits, the RTC rendered a decision on _______________ VOL. 195, MARCH 13, 1991 Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation February 5, 1985, the dispositive portion of which reads as follows: Premises considered, judgment is hereby rendered ordering defendants to release such the subject to be importation done with immediately utmost without as drilling time of is holes, of the subject only to the normal requirements of the customs processing for release dispatch essence; and the preliminary pronouncement as to costs. SO ORDERED.9 From the decision of the trial court, Solmac, the plaintiff below and the private respondent herein, appealed to the Court of Appeals only insofar as to the denial of the award of damages is concerned. On the other hand, the petitioners did not appeal from this decision. They did not see any need to appeal because as far as they were concerned, they had already complied with their duty. They had already ordered the release of the importation ‚without drilling of holes,‛ as in fact it was so released, in compliance with the advice to effect such immediate release contained in a letter of BOI dated October 9, 1984, to Commissioner Farolan. Thus, to stress, even before the RTC rendered its decision on February 5, 1984, the Clojus shipment of OPP was already released10 to the private respondent in its capacity as assignee of the same. Be that as it may, the private respondent filed its appeal demanding that the petitioners be held, in their personal and private capacities, liable for damages despite the finding of lack of bad faith on the part of the public officers. injunction hereto issued is hereby made

After due proceedings, the Court of Appeals rendered a decision11 on July 27, 1987, the dispositive portion of which reads as follows: _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation ‚WHEREFORE, defendants the appealed Farolan judgment is modified Parayno by ordering in the their

Ramon

and

Guillermo

solidarily,

personal capacity, to pay the plaintiff temperate damages in the sum of P100,000, exemplary damages in the sum of P100,000 and P50,000 as attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation. Costs against the defendants. SO ORDERED. On August 14, 1987, the petitioners filed a motion for reconsideration of the decision of the Court of Appeals. On May 25, 1988, the Court of Appeals issued its resolution modifying the award of damages, exemplary to wit: temperate in the damages sum of in the sum of and P100,000.00, damages P50,000.00,

permanent until actual physical release of the merchandise and without

P25,000.00 as attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation. The respondent court explained the reduction of the awards for exemplary damages and attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation in this wise: 3. In our decision of July 27, 1987, We awarded to plaintiff-appellant P100,000 as temperate damages, P100,000.00 as exemplary damages, and P50,000.00 as attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation. Under Art. 2233 of the Civil Code, recovery of exemplary damages is not a matter of right but depends upon the discretion of the court. Under Article 2208 of the Civil Code, attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation must always be reasonable. In view of these provisions of the law, and since the award of temperate damages is only P100,000.00, the amount of exemplary award of damages may as not be at par as temperate may damages. serve An the P50,000.00, exemplary damages already

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purpose, i.e., as an example for the public good. Likewise, the attorney’s fees and expenses The of litigation in the have to be reduced to 25% of the amount of temperate damages, or P25,000.00, if the same have to be reasonable. reduction amount of exemplary damages, and attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation would be in accord with justice and fairness.12 The petitioners now come to this Court, again by the Solicitor General, assigning the following errors allegedly committed by the respondent court: I _______________ VOL. 195, MARCH 13, 1991 Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation The Court of Appeals erred in disregarding the finding of the trial court that the defense of good faith of petitioners (defendants) cannot be discredited. II The Court of Appeals erred in adjudging petitioners liable to pay

x x x with reference to the claim of plaintiff to damages, actual and exemplary, and attorney’s fees, the Court finds it difficult to discredit or disregard totally the defendants’ defense of good faith premised on the excuse that they were all the time awaiting clarification of the Board of Investments on the matter:14 We hold that this finding of the trial court is correct for good faith is always presumed and it is upon him who alleges the contrary that the burden of proof lies.15 In Abando v. Lozada,16 we defined good faith as ‚refer[ring] to a state of the mind which is manifested by the acts of the individual concerned. It consists of the honest intention to abstain from taking an unconscion_______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation able and unscrupulous advantage of another. It is the opposite of fraud, and its absence should be established by convincing evidence.‛ We had reviewed the evidence on record carefully and we did not see any clear and convincing proof showing the alleged bad faith of the petitioners. On the contrary, the record is replete with evidence bolstering the petitioners’ claim of good faith. First, there was the report of the National Institute of Science and Technology (NIST) dated January 25, 1982 that, contrary to what the respondent claimed, the subject

temperate damages, exemplary damages, attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation.13 These two issues boil down to a single question, i.e., whether or not the petitioners acted in or, good faith in not they immediately be held releasing liable, in the their questioned importation, simply, can

importation was not OPP film scraps but oriented polypropylene, a plastic product of stronger material, whose importation to the Philippines was restricted, if not prohibited, under LOI 658-B.17 It was on the strength of this finding that the petitioners withheld the release of the subject importation for being contrary to law. Second, the petitioners testified that, on many occasions, the Bureau of Customs sought the advice of the BOI on whether the subject importation might be released.18 Third, petitioner Parayno also testified during the trial that up to that time (of the trial) there was no clear-cut policy on the part of the BOI regarding

personal and private capacities, for damages to the private respondent. We rule for the petitioners.

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The respondent court committed a reversible error in overruling the trial court’s finding that:

the entry into the Philippines of oriented polypropylene (OPP), as the letters of BOI Governors Tordesillas and Zayco of November 8, 1983 and September 24, 1982, respectively, ordering the release of the subject importation did not clarify the BOI policy on the matter. He then testified on the letter of the BOI Chairman Roberto Ongpin dated March 12, 1984, which states in full: Thank you for your letter of 1 February 1984 on the subject of various importations withheld imports. I have discussed the matter with Vice-Chairman Tordesillas and Governor Zayco of the Board of Investments and the following is their explanation: 1. On 22 June 1982, the BOI ruled that importation of OPP/PP film scraps intended for recycling or repelletizing did not fall within _______________ VOL. 195, MARCH 13, 1991 Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation the purview of LOI 658-B. 2. On 17 August 1982, the BOI agreed that holes could be drilled on subject film imports to prevent their use for other purposes. 3. For importations authorized prior to holes should depend on purpose for 22 June 1982, the the drilling of was by of Oriented and Polypropylene the (OPP) over and the Polypropylene disposition of (PP) such Customs confusion

Should your office have any doubts as to the authorized intended use of any imported lots of OPP/PP film scraps that you have confiscated, we have no objection to the drilling of holes to ensure that these are indeed recycled. I have requested Governor Zayco to contact your office in order to offer any further assistance which you may require.19 It can be seen from all the foregoing that even the highest officers (Chairman Ongpin, Vice-Chairman Tordesillas, and Governor Zayco) of the BOI themselves were not in agreement as to what proper course to take on the subject of the various importations of Oriented Polypropylene (OPP) and Polypropylene (PP) withheld by the Bureau of Customs. The conflicting recommendations of the BOI on this score prompted the petitioners to seek final clarification from the former with regard to its policy on these importations. This resulted in the inevitable delay in the release of the Clojus shipment, one of the several of such importations. The confusion over the disposition of this particular importation obviates bad faith. Thus the trial court’s finding that the petitioners acted in good faith in not immediately releasing the Clojus shipment pending a definitive policy of the BOI on this matter is correct. It is supported by substantial evidence on record, independent of the presumption of good faith, which as stated earlier, was not successfully rebutted. When a public officer takes his oath of office, he binds himself to

perform the duties of his office faithfully and to use reasonable skill and diligence, and to act primarily for the benefit of the public. Thus, in the discharge of his duties, he is to use that _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Farolan vs. Solmac Marketing Corporation prudence, caution, and attention which careful men use in the

which

importations

approved by the BOI that is, for direct packaging use or for recycling/ repelletizing into raw material. The exemption from drilling of holes on Solmac Marketing’s importation under Certificates of Authority issued on 1 April 1982 and 5 May 1982 and on Clojus’ importation authorized in

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1982 were endorsed by the BOI on the premise that these were not intended for recycling/repelletizing.

management of their affairs. In the case at bar, prudence dictated that

MARCH 13. JJ. 195 SCRA officials are not liable for damages for performing their (Chairman). is SET ASIDE and ANNULLED.R. Note. 195. if not prohibited under LOI 658-B.21 After all.‛22 In the same vein. Solmac Marketing Corporation. Pascual. the acts of the petitioners are protected by the presumption of good faith. disputable though it may _______________ VOL. These cellophane/film products were competing with locally manufactured which were polypropylene then already and oriented to polypropylene meet local as raw materials sufficient demands. SO ORDERED. LOI 658-B. Whatever damage they may have caused as a result of such an erroneous interpretation. Melencio-Herrera concur. the petitioners can not be said to have acted in bad faith in not immediately releasing the import goods without first obtaining the necessary clarificatory guidelines from the BOI. ‚even under the law of public officers. the petition is hereby GRANTED. Omnia praesumuntur rite et solemniter esse acta.. the presumption. Paras. is in the nature of a damnum absque injuria. vs. i. hence. 124 7 Page 179 Hellenic Philippine Shipping. Mistakes concededly committed by public officers are not actionable absent any clear showing that they were motivated by malice or gross negligence amounting to bad faith. 1991 duties required by law and absent bad faith. Siete .) ——o0o—— 168(1991)] [Farolan vs. disposition various importations polypropylene (OPP) and polypropylene (PP) then being withheld at the Bureau of Customs.) It was private respondent’s burden to overcome this juris tantum presumption. Padilla and Regalado. But even granting that the petitioners committed a mistake in withholding the release of the subject importation because indeed it was composed of OPP film scraps. it is the duty of the Court to see to it that public officers are not hampered in the performance of their duties or in making decisions for fear of personal liability for damages due to honest mistake.petitioners regarding first the obtain from of the the BOI the latter’s definite of guidelines oriented be. dated May 25. 10509. Consequently. Inc. (Mabutol vs.. As public officers.e. the petitioners had the duty to see to it that the law they were tasked to implement. Petition granted. SP No. in CA-G. No costs. (All things are presumed to be correctly and solemnly done. 1988. was faithfully complied with. nonetheless.—Public SCRA 869. the assailed Resolution of the respondent court. if any at all. that an official duty has been regularly performed23 applies in favor of the petitioners.20 contrary to the evidence submitted by the National Institute of Science and Technology that the same was pure oriented OPP. We are not persuaded that it has been able to do so. WHEREFORE. their importation was restricted. Resolution annulled and set aside.

‛ agricultural land by a local government unit under Sec. Agrarian Reform Law. DARAB Case No. It bears and original of case the of and that stressing adjudicate reform Natural that jurisdiction have determine exclusive jurisdiction means of is its in jurisdiction over all matters involving the implementation of the agrarian except those falling exclusive Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Department of Environment and Resources is in (DENR). 2008 Laynesa vs. 485 dated February 14. preference experience vested agrarian expertise explicit reform also except for the DA and DENR. 2008. we ruled that the exercise of one’s rights does not make him liable for damages. Such being the . Uy spite the reclassification of an agricultural land by a local government unit under Sec. thus ‚One who exercises his rights does no injury. it is damnum absque injuria.—We rule that the DARAB retains jurisdiction though the over disputes arising or from agrarian reform the matters defense even of landowner respondent interposes reclassification of the subject lot from agricultural to non-agricultural use. FEBRUARY 29. Administrative Law. De_______________ ** Additional member pursuant to Special Order No. Qui jure suo utitur nullum damnum facit. 2008. Court ruled that the exercise of one’s rights does not make him liable for damages. all agrarian reform matters are within the exclusive original jurisdiction of the DAR. Same. the Department of Agrarian Reform Adjudication Board (DARAB) still retains jurisdiction over a complaint filed by a tenant of the the land in question of for an threatened agricultural ejectment land to and nonredemption. Uy Damages. * SECOND DIVISION.‛—In Saba v. No. G. Same. thus: ‚One who exercises his rights does no injury. respondents. powers shall of the to DAR. VOL. Same. Court of Appeals. 20 of RA 7160. the DARAB still retains jurisdiction over a complaint filed by a tenant of the land in question for threatened ejectment and redemption for the following reasons: (1) Jurisdiction is determined by the statute in force at the time of the commencement of the action. V-RC-028 was filed by tenants agricultural threatened redemption from respondents.* NICOLAS LAYNESA and SANTOS LAYNESA. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Laynesa vs. vs. 189 SCRA 50 (1990). Same. PAQUITO and PACITA UY. Likewise settled is the rule the that jurisdiction of an over the subject land for matter is determined ejectment by and the its allegations of the complaint. If damage results from a person’s exercising his legal rights. February 29. It cannot be questioned that the averments 8 Page of the DARAB case clearly pertain to an agrarian reform matter and involve the implementation of the agrarian reform laws. 547. Jurisdictions. Court rules that the Department of Agrarian Reform arising Adjudication from agrarian Board reform (DARAB) matters retains even jurisdiction though the over disputes or landowner respondent interposes the defense of reclassification of the subject lot from agricultural to non-agricultural use.R. petitioners. 50 seeming conflict between the jurisdictions of the DAR and regular courts.case. 20 of RA 7160. Department of Agrarian Reform Adjudication Board (DARAB). the complaint falls within the jurisdiction of the DARAB under Sec. 149553. with jurisdiction because Sec.—Despite reclassification 50 of RA 6657 the agrarian on the DAR reform quasi-judicial has primary and the matters under Primary the DAR matters.

Paquito Uy. Rogelio N. Uy the property. was named owner of the land. Hidalgo. Santos Laynesa. 1974. Robert Morley was the owner of a four (4)-hectare parcel of land in Barrio Tagbong. or malevolent manner. Sr. the Deed was not registered with the Register of Deeds. Camarines Sur. as his tenant over the remainder of VOL. v. VELASCO. Pacita returned and again demanded that the Laynesas only be awarded if the act of the offender is attended by bad faith or done in wanton. 1993. Jr. Pacita filed a complaint docketed as DARAB Case No.3 Thereafter. 1993. Court ruled that exemplary damages may and Nicolas continued as tenants. In 1947. 547. Original Certificate of Title No. et al.Same. executed a Deed of Absolute Sale of Unregistered Land. Cuba. 365 SCRA 341 (2001) and Premiere Development Bank v. for Collection DARAB.—In Government Service Insurance System v. 399 SCRA 2007 (2003). Labung-Deang. 2008 Laynesa vs. Whereas in Cathay Pacific Airways. or malevolent manner. She claimed that she had purchased the land.. Jr. The Laynesas primarily sought that they be allowed to redeem the land from Pacita. Santos .2 On January 13. fraudulent. Ltd. and Bienvenido Cuba. died intestate on December 23. Jr. The Laynesas asked for proof of Pacita’s acquisition. married to respondent Paquito Uy. Jr. 1993. Jr. On May 20. Cuba. but she could not produce any. Cuba. Later. docketed as DARAB Case No. Pacita demanded that the Laynesas vacate the land. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court.4 of Rentals and Ejectment against the Laynesas with the 9 Page On October 25. _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Laynesa vs. 427 SCRA 686 (2004). Tormes for petitioners.000. and delivered the owner’s share of the produce to Cuba.1 vacate the property. on November 25. in consideration of PhP 80. He maintained Santos as the tenant over the 2 1/2-hectare portion while instituting petitioner Nicolas Laynesa. 1993 a petition against Pacita with the Department of Agrarian Reform Adjudication Board (DARAB). Sr. Uy Cuba. Subsequently. Notably. transferring the property to respondent Pacita Uy. Exemplary Damages. Jr. Botor. 1660 on the property was issued to Cuba. Consequently. this Court ruled that temperate damages will only be awarded by virtue of the wrongful act of a party. Sr. Pili. and Bienvenido. v. 1979. we ruled that exemplary damages may only be awarded if the act of the offender is attended by bad faith or done in wanton. Jr. Cuba. FEBRUARY 29. this time exhibiting the Deed of Absolute Sale of Unregistrered Land signed by Cuba. On July 13. died intestate. survived by his children. son of Santos. 730 for Legal Redemption entitled Santos Laynesa. Sixto Cuba. JR. PETITION for review on certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals. J. the Laynesas filed on October 13. 745 entitled Pacita Uy v. et al. executed a Deed of Assignment or Transfer of Rights of the undelivered owner’s share of the produce in favor of Pacita. Carmelita Cuba Sunga. to Sixto Cuba.. fraudulent. 1993. Vasquez. Botor & Associates for respondents. Court of Appeals. Petitioner Santos Laynesa was his tenant over two and a half (2 1/2) hectares of the land.: In 1938. Morley sold the 4 has.

Jr. They prayed that the court declare the Deed of Absolute Sale of Unregistered Land executed by Cuba. et al. the Laynesas sought to redeem the property covered by TCT No. Meanwhile. 2. Two hectares of rice lands would be transferred to the spouses Uy. et al. Sr. for Threatened Ejectment and Redemption with a Prayer for the issuance of Writ of Preliminary Injunction with the DARAB. the heirs of Bienvenido filed a petition with the Camarines Sur Regional Trial Court (RTC) for the judicial declaration of presumptive death of their father who had been missing since 1984.000 in the form of a Cashier’s Check with the Clerk of Court of the DARAB by way of consignation of the redemption price of the property. 28 and reclassified the land from agricultural to industrial. Pacita obtained a certification from the Municipal Agricultural Office (MAO) that the property was not prime agricultural property.5 Afterwards. v. in favor of the spouses Uy as null and void. 10 Page Laynesa vs.On February 10. 1994.00. On July 17. On May 29. for Nicolas Laynesa. and the remaining portion to Cuba. and the DARAB jurisdiction already been industrial land.5 hectares tillage in the consolidated amount of P60. Pili.000. and the property returned to Cuba. Thereafter. the Laynesas deposited PhP 80. On January 12. the spouses Uy alleged that the Laynesas had no cause of action against them. the Municipal Council of Tagbong. Florin issued a Decision. T-23276. and even assuming that the had Laynesas no had. the Laynesas filed a Complaint dated July 13. V-RC-028 and entitled Nicolas Laynesa. The DARAB dismissed the complaint without prejudice to the two cases filed before it by the parties. judgment is hereby rendered 1. Uy . the parties agreed to divide the property into two portions. on June 20. Paquito Uy. Camarines Sur approved Resolution No. the since action the was land already had barred by estoppel reclassified and as laches. the complaint was already moot and academic. Ordering the conveyance of subject lots to herein plaintiffs as abovestated. 1995. 1995. the parties in Civil Case No. and from the Municipal Agrarian Reform Office (MARO) that TCT No. with Reynoso and Carmelita Sunga. DARAB Provincial Adjudicator Isabel E. his 1. the heirs of Bienvenido. 23276 was not covered _______________ VOL.000.6 Subsequently. 2008 by Operation Land Transfer (OLT) or by Presidential Decree No. 1994. In the Complaint.000 square meters in the names of the spouses Uy. Sr. 23276 for PhP 40. which embodied Ordinance No. Uy with TCT No. his . the Register of Deeds issued Transfer Certificate of Title (TCT) No. 23276 over a portion of the property with an area of 20. (PD) 27. 67. 1996. In their Answer dated August 15.’s heirs. docketed as DARAB Case No. the foregoing considered. P1963 for Annulment of Sale of Real Estate against the spouses Uy with the Camarines Sur RTC. filed a Complaint docketed as Civil Case No.’s intestate estate. Meanwhile. In a Compromise Agreement approved by the RTC. FEBRUARY 29. 547. 1995.5 hectare tillage and for Santos Laynesa. Granting the petition for redemption by the plaintiffs herein of the two-hectare Riceland now titled in the name of Pacita E. The certifications were sought so the land could be reclassified as industrial land. P-1963 amicably settled their dispute. 1995. the dispositive portion of which states: ‚WHEREFORE.

3.00.. 65-66. the spouses Uy filed a Motion the adjudicator. reversing the Decision of the DARAB. at pp. Annex ‚A‛ of the Petition and its Resolution. FEBRUARY 29.000. at pp. The CA ruled DARAB without jurisdiction On May 16.000. the Decision of the DARAB. Attorney’s P12. but with the modification to for Reconsideration. B. 67-69. but reclassified.400. Sr... the property was no longer agricultural jurisdiction. the CA issued a Decision in CA-G. The Complaint of the Respondents and the counterclaims of the Petitioners are DISMISSED. VOL. shows the that when had the no 11 Laynesas filed their action with the DARAB. Declaring the injunction permanent. _______________ 7 Id. Dacudao and Perlita Tria-Tirona. Laynesa vs. Uy 4. DARAB Page .8 the DARAB affirmed the Decision of damages.000. P15. SO ORDERED. 2001. The spouses Uy appealed to the Court of Appeals (CA). Holding that at the time of the filing of the Complaint (V-RC-028-CSBranch 1) the land subject matter of the case ceases to be agricultural by virtue of the reclassification made by Municipal Ordinance No. at pp. 2008 allowing conversion is thereby presented. The dispositive portion of the CA Decision reads: ‚IN THE LIGHT OF ALL THE FOREGOING. In an set aside the award of Order dated February 27. Ordering defendants to pay of plaintiffs temperate damages fees of of Hence. Penned by Associate Justice Romeo J. 59454. exemplary damages P20. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Laynesa vs. Uy The Issues [T]he Honorable Court of Appeals (Fourteenth Division). SO ORDERED. (Chairperson. 87-103. suffices to oust the jurisdiction of the DARAB over a petition for legal redemption filed by the tenants.‛9 According to the CA. 8 Id. Annex ‚B‛ of the Petition are set aside and reversed. now a retired member of this Court) and concurred in by Associate Justices Renato C.00. we have this Petition for Review on Certiorari under Rule 45. without the Department of Agrarian Reform’s (DAR’s) approval. 28 of Pili. seriously erred and/or committed grave error in: A. unless the appropriate Order 9 Id.‛7 Thereafter. 547.00.10 The pivotal issue in this case is whether the reclassification of a lot by a municipal ordinance. so that the DARAB has no jurisdiction over the dispute involving said land and that the Decision of the DARAB is null and void. SP No. 1996. and appearance fees of P2. Camarines Sur. had the been evidence on record Thus.00. Holding that the reclassification alone of an agricultural land by a Municipal Ordinance from agricultural to any other uses without the necessary conversion Order from the DAR is enough to divest the DAR of jurisdiction to hear and determine any agrarian disputes involving the land.R. Callejo.

FEBRUARY 29.‛ . 229. except falling under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). reclassifying the land on May 29. RA 7160 shall govern in case of conflict between it and RA 6657.—The Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988 shall cover. Chapter 2. under Republic Act No. 1988. thus: ‚Section 50. Sec. through an ordinance passed by the sanggunian after conducting public reclassification agricultural lands and provide for the manner of their utilization or disposition in the following cases: (1) when the land ceases to be economically feasible and sound for agricultural purposes as determined by the Department of 12 Page x x x x Notwithstanding an appeal to the Court of Appeals. jurisdiction determine of adjudicate jurisdiction exclusive implementation agrarian reform. regardless of tenurial arrangement and commodity produced. Quasi-Judicial vested reform matters with primary and the matters involving shall Powers to have of the DAR. the decision of the DAR shall be immediately executory. 4 of RA 6657 tells us which lands are covered by the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program. the land ceased to be agricultural and is therefore beyond the jurisdiction of the DARAB. in 1991. 20. through the DARAB. 1995. Later. respondentsspouses Uy posit that after the issuance of Municipal Council Resolution No. all public and private agricultural lands as provided in Proclamation No. disputes pertaining to the land tenancy were within the jurisdiction of the DAR. including other lands of the public domain suitable for agriculture. thus: ‚Section 4.11 When RA 6657. Uy went to the RTCs.) _______________ VOL. 547. all agrarian disputes fell within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Court of Agrarian Relations. shall exercise quasi-judicial functions and has exclusive original jurisdiction over all disputes involving the enforcement and implementation of all agrarian reform laws. 2008 Laynesa vs. Uy However.—The and original DAR is hereby agrarian over all those into law. However. took effect on June 15. From the cited legal provisions. jurisdiction Section over and 56 of RA 6657 of all vested the criminal original offenses and exclusive of just from controversies prosecution involving determination compensation arising violations of RA 6657 to RTCs designated as Special Agrarian Courts. otherwise known as the However. Title I.There are strict requirements for the valid reclassification of land by a local government unit The resolution of this case is not that simple. 67. There is no question that petitioners-Laynesas are the tenants of the previous owner of the land. Reclassification hearings for the purpose. it cannot be disputed that the DAR. 20 of RA 7160 states: ‚SEC.‛ (Emphasis supplied.––(a) authorize the A city or municipality of may. Being a later law. the jurisdiction over such disputes _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Laynesa vs. Sec. of Lands. RA 7160 or the Local Government Code was passed Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law. Scope. (RA) 3844. granting local government units the power to reclassify land. Previously. As such. 131 and Executive Order No. the adjudication of agrarian reform disputes was placed under the jurisdiction of the DAR. as to the issue of reclassification.

That the requirements for food production. human settleSUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Laynesa vs.‛ shall not be affected by the said reclassification and the conversion of such lands into other purposes shall be governed by Section 65 of said Act. then President Fidel Ramos issued Memorandum percent (15%). or industrial purposes as determined by the the sanggunian DA. further. Scope and Limitations. such reclassification shall be limited to a maximum of the percentage of the total agricultural land of a city or municipality at the time of the passage of the ordinance as follows: 13 Page ments. Uy proposed reclassification of agricultural furnishing them copies of the report of the local development council including the draft ordinance on the matter for their comments. purposes. (b) Agricultural lands may be reclassified in the following cases: (1) when the land ceases to be economically feasible and sound for agricultural purposes as determined by the Department of Agriculture (DA). otherwise known as ‚The Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law. . proposals and recommendations within seven (7) days upon receipt. residential. DTI. and (3) For fourth to sixth class municipalities. as follows: ‚SECTION 1. commercial. may authorize the reclassification of agricultural lands into non-agricultural uses and provide for the manner of their utilization or disposition. subject to the limitations and other conditions prescribed in this Order. HLRB. and industrial expansion shall be taken into consideration in the preparation of such plans. ten Circular No. in conformity with existing laws.—(a) Cities and municipalities with percent (10%). concerned. (c) However. industrial Provided. such approval shall not be unreasonably withheld. the city/municipality other lands concerned should on notify the DOT and concerned agencies recommendation Economic Development Authority. (MC) 54 on June 8.Agriculture economic determined or value by (2) for the where the land shall have or substantially That greater as such (d) Where approval by a national agency is required for reclassification. Failure to act on a proper and complete application for reclassification within three (3) months from receipt of the same shall be deemed as approval thereof. amending. fifteen or modifying in any manner the provisions of [RA] 6657. authorize a city or municipality to reclassify lands in excess of the limits set in the next preceding paragraph. (e) Nothing in this Section shall be construed as repealing. five percent (5%): Provided. in accordance with the standards and guidelines prescribed for the purpose. or (2) where the land shall have substantially greater economic value for residential. That agricultural lands distributed to agrarian reform beneficiaries pursuant to [RA 6657]. commercial. sanggunian concerned: reclassification shall be limited to the following percentage of the total agricultural land area at the time of the passage of the ordinance: (1) For highly urbanized and independent component cities.‛ Pursuant to RA 7160. 20 of the Local Government Code. (b) The President of may. (c) The local government units shall. 1993. providing the guidelines in the implementation of the above Sec. (2) For component cities and first to third class municipalities. the when National public interest and so requires and upon comprehensive land use plans reviewed and approved in accordance with EO 72 (1993). to prepare their respective comprehensive shall be land the use primary plans and through zoning ordinances which continue enacted dominant bases for the future use of land resources: Provided.

and (3) (d) For fourth to sixth class municipalities. NEDA is hereby directed to issue the implementing guidelines governing the authority of cities and municipalities to reclassify lands in excess of the limits prescribed herein. when public interest so requires and upon of the certificates for LGUs to as the required HLRB. of 1992. (ii) crop All irrigated lands where water is not available for rice and other production but within areas programmed for irrigation facility or reclassification under AO 20 (1992). 1 hereof. s. All the the Page recommendation of the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA). and (iii) that the land ceases to be economically feasible and sound for agricultural purposes in the case of Sec. 2008 Laynesa vs. the sanggunian concerned must first secure the following certificates [from] the concerned national government agencies (NGAs): (1) A certification from DA indicating— AO 20. under upon the receipt preceding be of such paragraph. as the case may be. SECTION 2. Uy (1) For highly urbanized and independent component cities. (2) Agricultural lands already issued a notice of coverage or voluntarily offered for coverage under CARP. therefore. In addition. Uy (b) Prior to the enactment of an ordinance reclassifying agricultural lands as provided under Sec.VOL. 547. 14 (e) The President may. (c) The HLRB shall serve as the coordinating agency for the issuance funding commitments at the time of the application for land conversion or reclassification. as non(i) the total area of existing agricultural lands in the LGU concerned. by application. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED not be Laynesa vs. (3) Agricultural lands identified under negotiable for conversion as follows: (i) All irrigated lands where water is available to support rice and other crop production. the reclassification of agricultural lands within its jurisdiction based on the requirements of local development. (ii) that which lands are not classified as non-negotiable for conversion percent (10%). the following types of agricultural lands shall covered by the said reclassification: (1) Agricultural lands distributed to agrarian reform beneficiaries subject to Section 65 of RA 6557. FEBRUARY 29. and (iii) All irrigable lands already covered by irrigation projects with form distributed or not covered by a notice of coverage or not voluntarily offered for coverage under CARP. (2) A certification from DAR indicating that such lands are not rehabilitation by DA and National Irrigation Administration (NIA). five percent (5%). For this purpose. (2) For component cities and first to third class municipalities.—(a) The percent (15%). ten city or municipal development council (CDC/MDC) shall recommend to the sangguniang panlungsod or sangguniang bayan. submitted HLRB shall conduct initial review to determine if: . 1 (b-1). fifteen set in paragraph (d) hereof. Requirements and Procedures for Reclassification. authorize a city or municipality to reclassify lands in excess of the limits applications concerned reclassification shall.

the HLRB shall then consult with the concerned agencies on the required certifications. the same shall be deemed to have been complied with. issuance the of the certifications concerned enumerated now in Section an 2 (b) in SECTION 1 (d) hereof. Such ordinance shall likewise update the comprehensive land use plans of the LGU concerned. 1993 that the CA was convinced to rule that the disputed lot is no longer agricultural but industrial land and. recommend LGU concerned alternative areas for development purposes. economically agriculture. Failure of the HLRB and the NGAs to act on a proper and complete application within three months from receipt of the same shall be deemed as approved thereof.) It is because of the authority granted to a city or municipality by Sec. Uy (1) Jurisdiction is determined by the statute in force at the time of the commencement of the action.12 Likewise settled is the rule that jurisdiction over the subject matter is determined by the allegations of the complaint. 547. Upon determination that the above conditions have been satisfied. (d) Reclassification of agricultural lands may be authorized through an sanggunian may enact ordinance authorizing the reclassification of agricultural lands and providing for the manner of their utilization or disposition. the DARAB still retains jurisdiction over a complaint filed by a tenant of the land in question reasons: SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Laynesa vs. 20 of RA 7160. Page 15 .(1) and (2) the city or municipality concerned has an existing comprehensive Should the land feasible subject for to reclassification the DA is shall found to be to still the land use plan reviewed and approved in accordance with EO 72 (1993). FEBRUARY 29. city shall or be municipality of the result of their review and consultation. the DARAB does not have or has lost jurisdiction over the subject matter of DARAB Case No. 20 of RA 7160 coupled with the implementing guidelines laid down in MC 54 dated June 8. It cannot be questioned that the averments of the DARAB case clearly pertain to an agrarian reform matter and involve the for threatened ejectment and redemption for the following ordinance enacted by the sangguniang panlungsod or sangguniang bayan. Despite the reclassification of an agricultural land to non-agricultural land by a local government unit under Sec. Such ordinance shall be enacted and approved in accordance with Articles 107 and 108 of the IRR of the LGC. hence. This position is incorrect. If the land reclassified the limit. being The HLRB is in shall excess inform of the concerned the agencies. as the case may be. after conducting public VOL. 2008 Laynesa vs. the proposed reclassification complies with the limitations prescribed (f) Upon hereof. V-RC-028.13 DARAB Case No. application submitted to NEDA. If the DA has failed to act on such request within thirty (30) days from receipt thereof. Uy hearings for the purpose. (e) Provisions of Sec. 1 (b-2) hereof to the contrary notwithstanding. V-RC-028 was filed by the tenants of an agricultural land for threatened ejectment and its redemption from respondents. (Emphasis supplied. the concerned shall seek the advice of DA prior to the sanggunian enactment of an ordinance reclassifying agricultural lands.

(3) Respondents have not shown any compliance with Sec. Primary jurisdiction means in case of seeming conflict between the jurisdictions of the DAR and regular courts. 20 of RA 7160 and MC 54 and. These two certifications will not suffice for the following reasons: (1) Sec. the Environment Resources (DENR). 2008 Laynesa vs. Landowners must understand that while RA 7160. respondents have failed to satisfy the requirements prescribed in Sec. all agrarian reform matters are within the exclusive original jurisdiction of the DAR. Uy or certification from sound attests the for only DA that the lot land is ceases In no to this be case. amending or modifying in any manner the provisions of [RA] 6657. the complaint falls within the jurisdiction of the DARAB under Sec. Based on the foregoing reasons. . Sec. 1988 nor covered by a notice of coverage. granted local government units the power to reclassify agricultural land. relief must be granted to petitioners. 16 Page On the issue of whether there has been a valid reclassification of the subject lot to industrial land. 50 of RA 6657 on the quasi-judicial powers of the DAR. 20(e) of RA 7160 is unequivocal that nothing in said section longer shall be construed ‚as repealing. and the DA’s report and recommendation. 50 is also explicit that except for the DA and DENR.‛ As such. 50 of RA 6657 on quasijudicial powers of the DAR has not been repealed by RA 7160.implementation of the agrarian reform laws. Sec. FEBRUARY 29. the MARO certification which pertains only to PD 27 does not suffice. we disputes arising from rule that the DARAB retains reform matters even jurisdiction agrarian though the landowner or respondent inter_______________ VOL. 30 of said Code must be strictly comSUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Laynesa vs. Such being the case. Uy poses the defense of reclassification of the subject lot from agricultural to non-agricultural use. preference is vested with the DAR because of its expertise and experience in agrarian reform matters. 547. The MARO certified that the land was not covered by the OLT under PD 27. In the case at bar.‛ (2) Sec. In view of the over foregoing reasons. hence. (2) Sec. ‚prime economically the MAO agricultural agricultural that the purposes. the stringent requirements set forth in Sec. It bears stressing that the DAR has primary the the jurisdiction to determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters and shall have exclusive original jurisdiction over all matters those falling Agriculture involving under and (DA) implementation exclusive Department of the of agrarian reform except of the Department and of Natural jurisdiction Respondent Pacita only procured a MAO certification that the property was not prime agricultural property. the Local Government Code. 20 of RA 7160 requires submission of the recommendation or certification feasible property. 20 requires a certification from the DAR that the land has not yet been distributed to beneficiaries under RA 6657 which took effect on June 15. 2 of MC 54 on the additional requirements and procedures for reclassification such as the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board’s report and recommendation. the requisite public hearings. we rule that respondents failed to adduce substantial evidence to buttress their assertion that all the conditions and requirements set by RA 7160 and MC 54 have been satisfied.

In order that a plaintiff may maintain an action for the injuries of which he complains. fraudulent. we or ruled that damage without injury in those instances in which the loss or harm was not the result of a violation of a legal duty. as law will give redress in for an act a inflicted by the defendant. Injury is the illegal invasion of a legal right. thus: ‚One who exercises his rights does no injury. In such cases. Wrong without damage.‛14 This principle was further explained by this Court in the case of suffered some pain and suffering. or harm which results from the injury. Be that as it may. Qui jure suo utitur nullum damnum facit.plied with.‛15 Thus. that is. the consequences must be borne by the injured person alone. Court of Appeals. Court of Appeals. There is a material distinction between damages and injury. a right To of warrant action for the a recovery legal of damages. does not constitute a cause of action. that act must be not only hurtful. without sustaining any legal injury. Court of Appeals. damage is the loss. recompense there can or be compensation awarded suffered. causing damage. it is damnum absque injuria. Labung-Deang16 and Premiere Development Bank v. or damage without wrong. In Saba v. and consequently create no cause of action in his favor. he must establish that such injuries resulted from a breach of duty which the defendant owed to the plaintiff by a concurrence person of injury it. These situations are often called damnum absque injuria. the damage is regarded as damnum absque injuria. since damages are merely part of the remedy allowed for the injury caused by a breach or wrong. Many accidents occur and many injuries are inflicted by acts or Custodio v. the DARAB erred in awarding damages to and the imposition of liability for that breach before damages may be awarded. hurt. In other be words. malevolent award of tort damages is the premise that an individual was injured in contemplation of law. There must damnum injuria. 2008 Laynesa vs.18 in by Cathay bad Pacific or Airways. If damage results from a person’s exercising his legal rights. FEBRUARY 29. Thus. Uy state that there should be tort liability merely because the plaintiff petitioners. and damage resulting to the plaintiff therefrom. there must first be the breach of some duty Page . person sustains actual damage. Whereas attended manner. that is. for and the damages damage are the Thus. v. in Government Service Insurance System v. may happen many cases. Such adherence to the legal prescriptions is found wanting in the case at bar. done in Ltd.17 this Court ruled that temperate damages will only be awarded by virtue of the wrongful act of a party. wrong omissions which cause damage or loss to another but which violate no legal duty to such other person. in order et that the If. harm or loss to his person or property. The to the plaintiff and for legal the 17 responsibility the causing underlying basis exemplary damages may only be awarded if the act of the offender is faith wanton. the mere fact that the plaintiff suffered losses does not give rise to a right there to must recover be both damages. but wrongful. to wit: ‚However. Vasquez. an act or omission which the law does not deem an injury. The law affords no remedy for damages resulting from an act which does not amount to a legal injury or wrong. 547. it is not sufficient to _______________ VOL. we ruled that the exercise of one’s rights does not make him liable for damages.

On Official Leave. The May 16. Carpio-Morales and Tinga. FEBRUARY 29. consequently. February the petition is GRANTED. as well as attorney’s and appearance fees. SO ORDERED. the RTC’s award for exemplary and temperate damages. Thus. It must be pointed out that the RTC did not issue a preliminary respondents. _______________ VOL. SP No.. Similarly.In the instant case. Contrary to this finding of the trial court. Although this reclassification has now been declared to be ineffectual. (Acting Chairperson). including the dumping of earth filling materials thereon. J. 547. at a time that the reclassification had not yet been declared as invalid and ineffectual. Uy award for damages. Respondents’ dumping of earth filling materials on the subject land was but a lawful exercise of their rights as owners of the land. the instant case does not fall under any of the grounds set forth in Article 2208 of the Civil Code to justify the award for attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation. It was also natural for respondents to conclude that such reclassification resulted in the dispossession of petitioners as tenants. would not preclude respondents from exercising their rights.R. Carpio concur. presume that the reclassification of the land was lawful. Uy WHEREFORE. 2008 Laynesa vs. Pili. Thus. Camarines Sur by virtue of Municipal Council Resolution No. or malevolent manner. judgment reversed and set aside. fraudulent. 28. is a lawful exercise of their rights. there being no tenants of industrial land. Moreover. As stated. the RTC awarded damages to petitioners on the ground that respondents dumped earthfill materials during the pendency of the case. could lawfully exercise their proprietary rights over the land. The 27. respondents did not act in bad faith or in a wanton. 2001 CA grant of attorney’s fees and appearance fees in favor of Decision in CA-G.. petitioners are not entitled to an _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Laynesa vs. And even . for failing to comply with the provisions of RA 7160. respondents cannot be made liable for it. 1996 DARAB Order and January 12. Quisumbing (Chairperson). respondents cannot be made 18 Page liable for damages. Petition granted. absent a preliminary injunction or TRO against respondents. JJ. Given the disputable respondents presumption were justified that to duty regularly performed.19 injunction or temporary restraining order (TRO) against though this may have prejudiced or injured petitioners. It must be remembered that respondents attempted to have the land reclassified through the Municipal Government of San Juan. V-RC-028 are AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that the award for temperate and exemplary damages and attorney’s and appearance fees is DELETED. No costs. at the time. respondents cannot be penalized for a lawful act. 67 which embodied official Ordinance was No. 59454 is REVERSED and SET ASIDE. 1996 Decision of DARAB Provincial Adjudicator Florin in DARAB Case No. respondents. Therefore. there are also no grounds for the DARAB’s petitioners. Respondents’ exercise of acts of ownership over the land. must be deleted. Azcuna**. the pendency of the case before the RTC.

—While the jurisdiction of a tribunal. (Cuba vs. 503 SCRA 378 [2006]) ——o0o—— _______________ **Additional member as per Special Order No. (Remman Enterprises. including a quasi-judicial agency over the subject matter of a complaint or petition is determined by the allegations therein. Uy. Court of Appeals.Notes. Cuenco. the DARAB. in determining jurisdiction. 547 SCRA 200(2008)] Page 19 . Jr. 2008 [Laynesa vs. 485 dated February 14. but also the status of relationship of the parties. Inc. vs.. 27. The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) exercises its quasijudicial powers through its adjudicating arm. it is not only the nature of the issues or questions that is the subject of the controversy that should be determined. 502 SCRA 324 [2006]) The reclassification of lands to non-agricultural cannot be applied to defeat vested rights of tenant-farmers under Presidential Decree No.

Other than the gratuitous statements of accused-appellant and his uncle to the effect that Zoilo admitted having killed Malaspina. Evidence.. Declaration Against Interest. mentally incapacitated His or physically absence incompetent from the Sec. 111692. on to necessity the One and of the exceptions to of the the to Same. the Court is the the admission extrajudicial evidence is innocent thus declaration of guilt by the real culprit.—There are three (3) essential requisites for the admissibility of a declaration against interest: (a) the declarant must not be available to testify. Same. respondents. Since the actual amount was not substantiated. 38 of Rule 130 of the Rules of Court provides that ‚(t)he declaration made by a person deceased. obviously contemplates. COURT OF APPEALS and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. admission against penal interest cannot be accepted in the instant case is that the declarant is not ‚unable to testify. against the interest of the declarant. Requisites. Sec.00 as actual damages is not supported by the evidence on record.‛ There is no showing that Zoilo which is either 38 dead. no proof of the actual damages was ever presented in court. No. .‛ showing declarant was more mentally 38 weightier incapacitated of the why reason physically incompetent made which the Section rules contemplates. Jr. admissibility recognized Hearsay is Rule.SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Fuentes. or unable to testify. 1996 Fuentes. Actual damages if not supported by the evidence on record cannot be granted. when statement authenticated increasing the probability of its fabrication. No Same. 432 declarations made against interest. the same cannot be granted. Of the expenses alleged to have been incurred. However. if the fact asserted in the declaration was at the time it was made so far contrary to declarant’s own interest. may be received in evidence against himself or his successors in interest and against third persons. far penal interest cannot be or the accepted in the instant case as the declarant is not ‚unable to testify. Jr.R. mere hearsay rule is that pertaining to declarations made against interest.—But importantly. and it is not altogether clear that the declarant himself is unable to testify. 1996. vs. petitioner. For it is incumbent upon the defense to produce each and every piece of evidence that can break the prosecution and assure the acquittal of the accused.300. Murder. vs.300. We have only the testimony of the victim’s elder sister stating that she incurred expenses of P8. Its grounded trustworthiness.‛ The admissibility in evidence of such declaration is grounded on necessity and trustworthiness. FEBRUARY 9. vs. Lest we be misunderstood. JR. But this can be open to abuse.—The award by the court a quo of P8.—One is that exceptions hearsay rule pertaining jurisdiction does not make him ipso facto unavailable under this rule. it is made to persons who have every reason to lie and falsify. and (c) the Page circumstances must render it improbable that a motive to falsify existed. Court of Appeals Same. _______________ * FIRST DIVISION. (b) the declaration 20 must concern a fact cognizable by the declarant. the records always as show for that the defense of did not exert that not any would even serious let an effort to produce Zoilo as a witness. the Court can only give credence to those supported by receipts and which appear to have been genuinely expended in connection with the death of the victim.* ALEJANDRO FUENTES. Actual Damages. Same. VOL. February 9. Criminal Law. that a reasonable man in his position would not have made the declaration unless he believed it to be true. Court of Appeals G. that The admission is either against dead. 253. Exception.00 in connection with the death of Malaspina.

Honorio Osok and Alberto Toling. that ‚Jonie‛ admitted spontaneously that he stabbed Malaspina because after a boxing match before the latter untied his gloves and punched him.000.. 253. Public Attorney’s Office for petitioner. I saw you with a long hair but now you have a short hair.‛2 to Suddenly his side. hence. Court of Appeals he was compelled to run away when he heard that somebody with a bolo and spear would ‚kill all those from San Isidro‛ because ‚Jonie. this petition for review.3 Dr. Jr..00 and to pay P8. 432 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Fuentes. was benefit dance Site. Jr. BELLOSILLO. Jr. vs. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. Malaspina fell to the ground and his companions succumbed rushed to the Petitioner on his victim that gaping abdomen muttered petitioner guilty of murder qualified by treachery and imposed on him an indeterminate prison term of ten (10) years and one (1) day of prision mayor as minimum reclusion temporal to seventeen as maximum. . alias ‚Jonie‛ who knifed Malaspina. Jr. seeks reversal of the decision of the Court of Appeals affirming his conviction for murder. that as there were many persons milling around the house ‚Jonie‛ jumped out and escaped through the window.: Still professing innocence and insisting that he is a victim of mistaken identity. Malaspina Before he the in the abdomen with a hunting knife. reported that death was due to ‚stab wound at left lumbar region 1-1/2 in. that since he was also from San Isidro he sought refuge in his brother’s house where he met ‚Jonie‛. that when the victim was killed he was conversing with him.6 The Court of Appeals affirmed the judgment of the trial court.5 The Regional Trial Court of Prosperidad. Jr. vs. contends was in that the and the appellate judgment court of erred identified conviction when as and it the in held killer that of Alejandro Fuentes. the Rural Health Physician who autopsied the cadaver of Julieto Malaspina on 24 July 1989.1 At at four a o’clock in the at morning Dump of 24 June 1989 Trento. stabbed him. ‚Before.‛4 positively affirming categorically holding Page petitioner liable for damages to the heirs of the victim. was from that place. petitioner Alejandro Fuentes. in length with 21 extracavitation of the small and large intestines.. found together with Godofredo Llames. Tudela. Petitioner called Malaspina and placed his right arm on the shoulder of the latter saying. (17) years and to indemnify the four (4) months of heirs of the victim Julieto Malaspina the amount of P50. Julieto Agusan Malaspina del Sur. that _______________ VOL. Salubre. 1996 Fuentes. Agusan del Sur. J.300.00 as actual damages plus costs. Porfirio L. FEBRUARY 9.‛ the killer. wound petitioner stabbed fled. Petitioner petitioner Malaspina.Petitioner claims on the other hand that it was his cousin Zoilo Fuentes. Court of Appeals PETITION for review of a decision of the Court of Appeals. that he was arrested at eight o’clock in the morning of 24 June 1989 while he was in a store in the barangay.

that he even showed him the knife he used and asked his help in finding a lawyer. Jr. Conde then advised Felicisimo that if it was true that it was Zoilo who fatally stabbed Malaspina. What is material is that Malaspina was stabbed to death and that three (3) prose_______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Fuentes. and ‚Jonie‛ Fuentes are one and the same person. that a reasonable man in his position would Fuentes. Court of Appeals cution witnesses positively identified petitioner as the knife wielder. Thus— COURT: Q. Jr.Petitioner points to an alleged inconsistency between the testimonies of prosecution witnesses Alberto Toling and Honorio Osok to the effect that they saw petitioner stab Malaspina on the right lumbar region. if the fact asserted in the declaration was at the time it was made so far contrary to declarant’s own interest. the petitioner. since exception it is to the a declaration hearsay rule. 38 of Rule 130 of the Rules of Court provides that ‚(t)he declaration made by a person deceased. Conde then personally went to Barangay San Isidro to investigate. Felicisimo must persuade Zoilo to surrender. as some of his friends did. testified that Alejandro Fuentes. Sec. Jr. Jr. and the testimony of the attending physician that the victim was stabbed on the left lumbar region. No less than petitioner’s own witness.9 For his part. Jr. or unable to testify. Nerio Biscocho who claimed he also saw the killing. against the interest of the declarant. Station Commander P/Sgt. x 22 On cross-examination witness Biscocho further admitted that he himself would call petitioner Alejandro Fuentes. in working out a settlement with the relatives of the deceased. Benjamin Conde. Felicisimo testified that on 24 June 1989 while he was at Barangay San Isidro.. but victim Malaspina occasionally called petitioner ‚Junior. Jr. I do not know his real name but he is called as Joni. That it was another person who committed the offense is too incredible. petitioner met Felicisimo who informed him of the disclosure by Zoilo. It Petitioner would make much of the alleged confession of Zoilo Fuentes. as ‚Joni‛ or ‚Jonie‛ Fuentes. There he must be stressed that these witnesses has known petitioner for quite some time and never had any personal misunderstanding nor altercation with the latter as to create any suspicion that they were impelled by ill motives to falsely implicate him. Zoilo Fuentes. 253.‛8 Page . against penal The socalled interest and confession therefore an of Zoilo was allegedly given to Felicisimo Fuentes. vs.Who is this Joni Fuentes and Alejandro Fuentes? A.. This discrepancy is inconsequential.. the uncle of petitioner and Zoilo. confessed that he killed Malaspina in ‚retaliation‛. sir. if possible.. Court of Appeals confessed killer was gone and that petitioner had been arrested for a crime he did not commit. The following day however he learned that the self_______________ VOL. Conde.That x x x7 Joni Fuentes is the same of that or the accused Alejandro was told by the townsfolk that Zoilo had already fled. 1996 435 Fuentes. Jr. who in turn relayed the matter to P/Sgt.. vs. in securing bail and. testified that after the criminal information for murder was filed on 26 July 1989.10 One of the recognized exceptions to the hearsay rule is that pertaining to declarations made against interest. FEBRUARY 9. Jr.

is not admissible in evidence as an exception to the hearsay rule. and (c) the circumstances must render it improbable that a motive to falsify existed. that can bind Zoilo legally to that statement. verbally admitted to the latter. Zoilo who is related to accused-appellant had every motive to prevaricate. There is nothing. we need not resort to legal rhetorics to find that the admission of such a statement may likewise be. assume further declaration against interest: (a) the declarant must not be available to declaration declarant. For all its attempt to demonstrate the arbitrariness behind the rejection in certain cases of declarations against penal interest. While the Court agreed that Toledo. 1 as the statement of a fact against penal interest. 1 since there was ample testimonial subsequently captured and upon being _______________ VOL. The second group considered Exh.not have made the declaration unless he believed it to be true. One group would totally disregard Exh. In the instant case. 1. Jr. Jr. In that case. a cousin of accused-appellant. 1 as part of the res gestae as it was made on the same morning when the fight occurred. should be exonerated on reasonable doubt. after which he disappeared. Morales was killed almost instantly.12 a 1928 case.. Court of Appeals reexamine the declaration of third parties made contrary to their penal interest. who reportedly intervened in the fight and dealt the mortal blow. We are not unaware of People v. Consider this factual scenario: the alleged declarant Zoilo Fuentes. Court of Appeals confronted with his admission of guilt readily repudiated the same.‛13 Let us assume that the trial court did admit the Let statement us of Zoilo and on that that Zoilo basis was acquitted accused-appellant. where Justice Malcolm writing for the Court endeavored to _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Fuentes. vs. according to Wigmore. the Toledo case cannot be applied in the instant case which is remarkably different. A third group.‛ There is no showing that Zoilo is either dead. vs. Jr. 38 obviously contemplates. the far weightier reason why the admission against penal interest cannot be accepted in the instant case is that the declarant is not ‚unable to testify. The same can be said of accused-appellant and his uncle Felicisimo. Jr.11 There testify. Holgado who was seriously wounded gave a sworn statement (Exh. the members did not reach an accord on the admissibility of Exh. mentally incapacitated or physically incompetent which Sec. But more importantly. are (b) three the (3) essential must requisites concern for a the fact admissibility cognizable of by a the opined that the court below erred in not admitting Exh. One striking feature that militates against the acceptance of such a statement is its patent untrustworthiness. 1996 Fuentes. absolutely nothing. Toledo. we find that the declaration particularly against penal interest attributed to Zoilo Fuentes. to which Justice Malcolm belonged. 253. One (1) month later Holgado died from his wounds. Secondly. His mere absence from the jurisdiction does not make him upon ipso the facto unavailable to under this rule. and later to their common uncle Felicisimo Fuentes. ‚shocking to the sense of justice. may be received in evidence against himself or his successors in interest and against third persons. that he (Zoilo) killed the victim because of a grudge. the protagonists Holgado and Morales engaged in a bolo duel. FEBRUARY 9. 1) before the municipal president declaring that when he and Morales fought there was nobody else present.14 every For it is of incumbent defense produce each and piece 23 Page evidence to support an acquittal.‛ The admissibility in evidence of such declaration is grounded on necessity and trustworthiness. .

But this can be open to abuse. Since the actual amount was not substantiated. exclusion is the prudent recourse as explained in Toledo— The purpose of all evidence is to get at the truth. the . requires such medium period of the penalty. FEBRUARY 9. 24 The Revised Penal to Code death.e.16 However. This is a valid point. should have been imposed on petitioner.18 To seek recovery for actual damages it is essential that the injured party proves the actual amount of loss with reasonable degree of certainty premised upon competent proof and on the best evidence available. Court of Appeals The Court of Appeals as well as the trial court correctly determined the crime to be murder qualified by treachery. We have only the testimony of the victim’s elder sister stating that she incurred expenses of P8.15 _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Fuentes. the crime it is error to hold him answerable for P8. reclusion perpetua. conjecture or guesswork in determining the fact and amount of damages. Of the expenses alleged to have been by incurred. vs.00 as actual damages on the testimony victim’s Angelina Serrano. Jr. vs. Other than the gratuitous statements of accused-appellant and his uncle to the effect that Zoilo admitted having killed Malaspina.00 as actual damages is not supported by the evidence on record. when statement authenticated increasing the probability of its fabrication. 253. without any tangible document to support such claim.300. JR. In crimes and quasi-delicts.19 Courts cannot simply rely on speculation. In other words. made the stabbing of Malaspina treacherous. for this case at least. 1996 Fuentes. The reason for the hearsay rule is that the extrajudicial and unsworn statement of another is not the best method of serving this purpose.000. Lest we be misunderstood. the judgment appealed from finding petitioner ALEJANDRO FUENTES. 248 of supported appear have genuinely expended in connection with the death of the victim. no proof of the actual damages was ever presented in court. and the award of actual damages is deleted. it is made to persons who have every reason to lie and falsify. the defendant is liable for all damages which are the natural and probable consequences of the act or omission complained of. Thus. Jr.00 in connection with the death of Malaspina. Murder under Art.21 However.20 _______________ VOL. the records always as show for that the defense of did not exert that not any would even serious let an effort to produce Zoilo as a witness. the great prove possibility their of the fabrication that of falsehoods. and it is not altogether clear that the declarant himself is unable to testify. the Court is the the admission extrajudicial evidence is innocent thus declaration of guilt by the real culprit. is punishable aside by from reclusion temporal in its the maximum period Since treachery qualifying Page crime to murder there is no other modifying circumstance proved. Court of Appeals The award by the court a quo of P8. receipts the and Court which can only to give credence been to those evidence. guilty of MURDER and directing him to indemnify the heirs of Julieto Malaspina in the amount of P50.17 Petitioner basis of maintains the mere that assuming of that the he committed sister.300. the same cannot be granted. i.evidence that can break the prosecution and assure the acquittal of the accused. The suddenness of the attack. the doors and be the closed inability to to untruth.300.22 WHEREFORE.00 plus costs is AFFIRMED with the modification that the penalty imposed should be as it is corrected to reclusion perpetua. the court a quo erred in imposing an indeterminate prison term of ten (10) years and one (1) day of prision mayor as minimum to seventeen (17) years and four (4) months of reclusion temporal as maximum. without any provocation from the unsuspecting victim.

4. vs. Judgment affirmed with modification. Inc.SO ORDERED. Court of Appeals. 95583. NLRC Notes. Court of Appeals. 253 SCRA 430(1996)] Page 25 . Court of Appeals. Vitug. 226 SCRA 423 [1993]) ——o0o—— [Fuentes. 21 TSN. Inc. Wenceslao. JJ.. Datu and Co.. G. (Philippine Airlines. the same being merely based on a typewritten list of expenses submitted by the father of the deceased without any competent proof presented in court. 212 SCRA 560. p. Padilla concur. 232 SCRA 745 [1994]) Actual or compensatory damages cannot be presumed but must be duly proved with reasonable degree of certainty. No. vs.—Declaration against interest may be received in evidence as an exception to the hearsay rule. Kapunan and Hermosisima. Jr. 12 August 1992. Jr. 19 June 1991..T. vs. 22 In People v. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED L. _______________ (Chairman). (Alberto vs. the Court disallowed claim for actual damages.R.

—Well-settled is the rule that alibi is the weakest of all defenses. it is not enough for the accused was to prove that they were likewise somewhere else demonstrate when it the was crime committed.—This Court has ruled in a number of cases that the testimony of a witness. JANUARY 29. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. the fact Words finder and draws The Phrases. No.R. chain The totality beyond of the evidence doubt must the constitute guilt of an the showing reasonable accused.—As a rule. Indeed. Witnesses. Well-settled is the rule that alibi is the weakest of all defenses.VOL. in the defined inference ‚that indirectly finder fact issue through substantial dilute inconsequential nor the fact inconsistencies by appellants contradictions insignificant neither their credibility to the verity of their testimonies. Cuenca G. this Court will not disturb the factual findings of the trial court. Same. if credible and positive.—So arbitrariness or oversight of some fact or circumstance of significance and value.* PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. if credible and positive. For alibi to prosper. accused. Requisites. is sufficient for conviction because truth is established not by the quantity.‛—In the absence of direct evidence. their witnesses’ inconsequential nor and are the testimonies inconsistencies verity agree of on and contradictions matters. appellants. CRISANTO AGON y MAGPANTAY. they must that 26 the demeanor and conduct of the witnesses while they were testifying. because it is easy to concoct and difficult to disprove. Same. in be issue Circumstantial through on an the which the fact Evidence. if not tainted with physically impossible for them to have been at the scene of the crime at the time. dilute long neither as the credibility their testimonies. to the exclusion of all others. if not tainted with arbitrariness or oversight of some fact or circumstance of _______________ * THIRD DIVISION. Page . Resort thereto is essential when the lack of direct testimony would result in setting a felon free. appellee.‛ Circumstantial evidence suffices to convict if the following requisites concur: (1) more than one circumstance is present. and BERNIE AGON (at large). but by the quality of the evidence. JACKSON CUENCA (at large). vs. because it is easy to concoct and difficult to disprove. In the instant case. 143819. GERRY CUENCA y MEDRANO and CRISANTO AGON y MAGPANTAY. 2002 People vs. 375. 2002. GERRY CUENCA y MEDRANO. So long as the witnesses’ testimonies agree on substantial matters. January 29. appellants may convicted as circumstantial proves draws a from evidence. because it had a better opportunity to observe which evidence established. Alibi. The trial court’s assessment of the witnesses and their credibility is entitled to great weight and is even conclusive and binding. its assessment of the witnesses and their credibility is entitled to great weight and is even conclusive and binding. Evidence. (2) the facts from which the inferences are derived are proven. The testimony of a single witness. the inconsistencies cited and immaterial essential testified to—the killing of the victim. from latter the is an Circumstantial evidence is defined as ‚that which indirectly proves a fact inference basis of which evidence established. Cuenca significance and value. but by the quality of the evidence. and (3) the combination of all the circumstances produces a conviction beyond reasonable unbroken doubt. is sufficient for conviction because truth is established not by the quantity.

in People v. where an award for the loss of earning capacity to the heirs of the deceased was granted despite the absence of documentary evidence to substantiate such claim. Mauhay for accused-appellants. which found them guilty of murder beyond reasonable doubt. Br. Nos. together with their co-accused (who are still at large). Murder. 16 January 2002. 302 SCRA 690 (1999).R. True.: The testimony of a single eyewitness. The principle enunciated in People v. which now Decision2 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Lipa City (Branch 12) in Criminal Case No. Panabang.— We also find the court a quo’s award of P4. Conspiracy exists when two there or more persons come to an agreement when and two or decide more on the commission of a felony. Same. Cuenca PANGANIBAN.00 daily as carpenter is not sufficient proof. helped each other in ensuring the execution of their nefarious intention to beat up and kill the victim who was unarmed and with no opportunity to defend himself. Panabang modifies this principle and now precludes an award for loss of earning capacity without adequate proof. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. However. Dominador M.000 for loss of earning Page . 373 SCRA 560. has been modified by the new ruling in People v. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. capacity to be improper. 0132-98. JANUARY 29. Wilfredo Castillo was earning P250. Same. 2000 27 G. Aggravating Circumstances. 2002 People vs. if credible and positive. Damages. we granted an award for the loss of earning capacity to the heirs of the deceased despite the absence of documentary evidence to substantiate such claim. the Court treating the testimony of the victim’s wife as sufficient to establish the basis for the grant. together with their co-accused. the new ruling in People v. it is sufficient that they acted in concert pursuant to the same objective. APPEAL from a decision of the Regional Trial Court of Lipa City. Conspiracy. and (2) the means of execution are deliberately or consciously adopted. at the time of his death. not necessarily by the quantity of the evidence. Conspiracy exists persons come to an agreement and decide on the commission of a felony. is sufficient to support a conviction for murder.—Treachery is present when the following VOL. 137514-15. the prosecution succeeded in showing that appellants. There was treachery where the accused. 375. Words and Phrases. precludes an award for loss of earning capacity without adequate proof. helped each other in ensuring the execution of their nefarious intention to beat up and kill the victim who was unarmed and with no opportunity to defend himself. 12. Verde. Requisites. Same. J. Batangas. Verde. Treachery. Cuenca conditions are present: (1) the means of execution employed gives the victims no opportunity to defend themselves or to retaliate.800.—The prosecution was likewise able to show that was conspiracy. Same. In this case. The bare testimony of the brother of the deceased Felicisimo Castillo that. We deemed the testimony of the victim’s wife sufficient to establish the basis for the grant. Truth is established by the quality. The Case Gerry Cuenca and Crisanto Agon1 appeal the February 7. The Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee. It is not necessary that there be direct proof that the co-conspirators had any prior agreement to commit the crime.Criminal Law.

‚The period during which both accused are under preventive imprisonment shall be deducted from their sentence.000. 1998 at about 9:30 o’clock 28 in the evening. as moral damages and to pay their proportionate share of the costs. at Barangay Tambo. 2002 People vs. accused. Gerry and Jackson being brothers and Crisanto and Bernie being father and son.00. with intent to kill. assault. JANUARY 29. with treachery and grave abuse of superior strength and taking advantage of nighttime. he recognized the four (4) assailants as Gerry Cuenca.000. acting in common accord and mutually aiding one .00 for loss of earning capacity. they while were the all person being mauled was Wilfredo ‘Edok’ Castillo. He witnessed Crisanto hold Edok’s left hand while Bernie held his right hand. suddenly and without warning. The Facts Version of the Prosecution In its Brief. ‚Finally. Marcial knew the four eight years neighbors. as amended by Republic Act 7659 and sentences each of them to suffer the penalty of RECLUSION PERPETUA.000. one Wilfredo Castillo.6 the Office of the Solicitor General summarized the CRISANTO AGON.800.00 as indemnity for his death. He then saw a man being mauled and beaten by four (4) persons. Upon seeing the incident. direct the Court for March finds the accused and GERRY CUENCA with and one under another. Batangas.5 Because their co-accused were at large. Lipa City. the sum of P38. 1998. 375.00. thereby inflicting upon the latter stab wounds. and the above-named instruments. appellants—with the assistance of their lawyers—entered a plea of not guilty.‛4 When arraigned on April 27. Philippines and within the jurisdiction armed of this Honorable Court. he hid himself behind a PLDT telephone post. to pay the heirs of Wilfredo Castillo the sum of P50. Lipa City Assistant City Prosecutor Mario G. and confederated and another in the commission of the crime of [m]urder. did then and there wilfully.800. From a distance of about ten (10) meters. the sum of P4. while lying down with his wife and family in his house at Module Subdivision. unlawfully and feloniously attack. the victim Crisanto for Agon (8) and Bernie since Agon. _______________ Cuenca Bernardo ‘Bernie’ their apprehension. 1998. so he decided to go out of the house to see what was happening outside. Marcial Morillo7 heard a commotion taking place outside his house. conspired 1998. as alleged in the Information defined penalized Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code. Lipa City. Dogs were barking loudly. which directly caused his death. guilty beyond reasonable doubt. Mayuga filed the Information charging appellants and their co-accused as folows: _______________ VOL. the sum of P20. 1998.The RTC disposed of the case as follows: ‚WHEREFORE. trial on the merits proceeded only as against them.‛3 On March 17. around 9:30 in the evening. assailants Jackson and Cuenca. Barangay Tambo. Cuenca ‚That on or about the 14th day of February. as actual damages. conspiring then and with bladed/pointed hard Page confederating together. both as principals by participation dated having 27. beat and stab with the use of said bladed/pointed and hard instruments. Jackson let also warrants and of arrest be issued Agon against for the accused immediate prosecution’s version of the facts as follows: ‚On February 14.

there were several contusions and hematoma on both eyes which could have been caused by mauling. Cuenca Gerry was at Edok’s front and to the right while Jackson was at Edok’s front and to the left and both were beating Edok continuously. around 2:30 in the afternoon. The coming from the moon and the electric bulb at the electric post which was at the top of the roof of a house near the place of the incident. Coconut trees surrounded the area. SPO4 Saludo noticed the VOL. When Edok’s body was retrieved. He did not want the members of his family to get involved in the incident because he feared for their safety. Castillo. two (2) of which were stab wounds. the light place the happened illuminated of Edok’s body which was found inside a well in the forest. PO2 Enrico Tapalla. Corazon Sabile. ‚Around 4:30 in the afternoon of February 15. Feliciano reported to the Desk Officer. Marcial did not mention to Feliciano that he had witnessed the mauling of Edok because he was afraid that he might be implicated and involved in the incident. 1998. Feliciano Page dropped by the house of Marcial and said that Edok’s body had been found and borrowed Marcial’s flashlight in order to help in the recovery . ‚Thereafter. 2002 People vs. JANUARY 29. 1998. and hematomas on the middle mandibular area and the lateral mandibular area (chin) which could have been caused by mauling or the dumping of the cadaver in to the well. chest and other parts of his body. Health Officer of Lipa City. ‚On February 15. Dr. a neighbor named Silo passed by Marcial’s house and told him that they were looking for Edok’s body. Edok tried to struggle but his efforts proved futile. Thereafter. Lipa 29 ‚About 4 o’clock in the afternoon of February 15. The physical examination yielded the following results: there were nine (9) injuries on the head. 1998. Edok’s brother. The four (4) assailants then carried Edok’s body with one holding on to his right arm. one stab wound on the right frontal area of the right ear which reached the skull and the second stab wound also at his right ear. February 15. ‚About 7:30 in the evening of February 15. who told him that they were looking for Edok. that the body of his in brother. 375. there are also linear abrasions on the right lateral neck area that could have been caused by forcible contact. Marcial met Feliciano Castillo. the other one x x x his left arm and the other two each held the right and left leg[s] of Edok towards the direction of Calabarzon Highway. The The mauling where incident lasted incident approximately was twenty (20) by minutes. Cuenca presence City. of stab wounds. Marcial returned to his house but did not tell his wife about the incident because she was ‘nerbiyosa’. The body was recovered between Masagana Subdivision and Adelina Subdivision. one (1) lacerated gaping wound on the head. which was a forested area and about one-half (1/2) kilometer from where the mauling incident took place. head. conducted an autopsy on Edok’s body.SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. SPO2 Alberto Libao of the Lipa Police Station. cadaver was then taken to Funeraria San Sebastian at Balagbag. had been found in the forested area Police Inspector Romeo Mitra. Edok then gave in. ‚The following morning. blows and hematomas on his body. Feliciano went with them. stooped down and eventually lost consciousness (Lumug[m]ok na po siya). The body was retrieved from the well which was about fifteen (15) meters deep. SPO4 Renaldo Saludo and SPO3 Pablo de Luna were dispatched to the crime scene to investigate the incident. Barangay Wilfredo Tambo. There were blood stains around the well. 1998. Gerry and Jackson each used a piece of wood in hitting Edok several times on the face. Marcial joined in the search in the forest for about one hour and then he went home. 1998.

The following day. Morillo went to the Lipa Police Station to report the incident.. outside While and bringing a him inside the took house.] however. they heard a voice calling for Jackson who was identified as Wilfredo Castillo. she also found three (3) abrasions on the right forearm. Cuenca Version of the Defense Appellants gave the following narration of the facts:9 ‚The defense maintained that in the evening of February 14. two of the three Visayan Calabarzon Workers namely Obet and Nognog arrived at the house of Yolanda Cuenca and told her that she [would] say that she saw and heard nothing about the commotion. The internal examination on the victim’s body revealed that 200 ml. 4th. Witness Yolanda Cuenca brought him inside her house and attended visitors to his wound. the third on the 8th intercostal space midelavicular area. The mauling was aggravated by the dumping of Edok’s body in the well. all of the said wounds could have been caused by a sharp pointed instrument. left posterior arm and left posterior hand which could have been caused by forcible contact. Tambo. 3rd. Nognog and Ruel were in the house of Yolanda Cuenca in the evening of February 14. 1998 at Brgy. 5th. Jackson Cuenca came out [of] the house and asked Wilfredo Castillo what was the problem[. that is 5 cms. and the fourth [was] on the right lumbar area. 6th. Jackson was struggling to be free. of blood were found in the fleural cavity which could have come from the perforations of the right ventricle of the heart. 1998. place. 1998. that the abrasions are called ‘gasgas’ and could have been caused by forcible contact. on the vertebral line. they were at the house of Roger Dimaculangan at Normanz Village. right midelavicular area. she also found five (5) abrasion on the body. the liver and upper lobe of the right lung were perforated. 1998 and they were not also near the house of Marcial Morillo where the crime took place allegedly [o]n the evening of February 14. Marcial Morillo told Ruben Castillo about the mauling incident which (Morillo) had witnessed on the night of February 14. in whose While place these according persons to Marcial in said was committed. Morillo the the alleged crime eyewitness. Lipa City about one kilometer away from the place of Marcial Morillo. Wilfredo Castillo immediately hacked him who was wounded at the right side of his back. The cause of Edok’s death was Hypovolemia secondary to multiple stab wounds. four (4) stab wounds and five (5) abrasions.‛8 (Citations omitted) . 1998. 1998. on February 17. February 15. she also found in the extremities of the cadaver two (2) stab wounds on the right anterior thigh 4 to 5 cms. 7th of both ribs which alone were sufficient to cause death. Tambo. left infrascapular area. that is. the second on the fifth intercostal space. Lipa City helping in the preparation of food for the baptismal party on February 15. ‚On February 16. 1998 accused Jackson Cuenca and Bernie Agon together with three [V]isayan [C]alabarzon workers identified as Obet. Considering the nature and number of injuries Edok sustained.there were nine (9) wounds on the body. ‚Accused Gerry Cuenca and Crisanto Agon were not in the house of Yolanda Cuenca where the commotion took place [o]n the evening of February 14. [and] the three Visayan [C]alabarzon workers went thereafter commotion During the commotion. 1998. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Other than accused-appellants and other Andy Obille.e. 1998. on the right midscapular area and on the vertebral line. Accused-appellants vehemently 30 Page ‚Bothered by his conscience. deep. no medical attention and assistance could have saved his life. the said wounds were almost of the same depth. the first stab wound was on the third intercostal space midelavicular area. in the left midscapular area. i. On that time and date. there were complete fractures on the 2nd. were house of Yolanda Cuenca. Yolanda Cuenca heard somebody [utter] the words ‘sobra-sobra na ang ginagawa mo sa mga tao dito’. Benjamin Anterola and Romy Anterola people were there.

‛10 _______________ VOL.‛11 The court a quo held that conspiracy attended the killing: ‚In this case. The honorable trial court erred in not considering that the victim died of multiple stab wounds and not due to injuries caused by a piece of wood. Hence.13 31 Issues Page defense witnesses. They contend that the trial court erred in giving full credence to Morcillo’s testimony. and weight to the candid. We carefully reviewed the testimonies of both the prosecution and appellants’ conviction. Marcial Mor[c]illo. Crisanto and Bernie Agon were each holding the hands of Wilfredo Castillo. 375. but also because it vibrates with truth and sincerity.‛14 This Court’s Ruling After reviewing the records of this case. while the brothers Gerry and Jackson Cuenca helped each other in beating him with a piece of [wood] about one (1) meter long x x x. at the precise moment of the execution of the crime. the four (4) accused helped each other in carrying Wilfredo Castillo towards the Calabarzon Highway going to the direction of Batangas City. After Castillo slumped and lost consciousness. _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Cuenca ‚2. The honorable trial court erred in giving weight to the testimony of the alleged lone eyewitness. as well as the other pieces of evidence on record. accused by Marcial and devoid Morcillo. we find no cogent basis to reverse liabilities. . because It said: the ‚the lone Court prosecution believes witness.‛12 It disbelieved the defenses of denial and alibi. gives In their Brief. not only of any signs of straight-forward artificiality. appellants fault the trial court with the following alleged errors: ‚1. 1998.denied that they were the ones who killed Wilfredo Castillo alias ‘Edok’ in the evening of February 14. the accused acted in concert to accomplish a common objective to take the life of Wilfredo Castillo. First Issue: Credibility of Lone Prosecution Witness Appellants assail the credibility of Marcial Morcillo. the lone prosecution witness. The fact that Marcial Morillo did not witness the actual stabbing and killing of Wilfredo Castillo is of no moment. ‚3. The honorable trial court erred in not considering the defense of alibi of accused-appellants in the appreciation of the whole evidence presented by the prosecution and defense. this appeal. because it was not ‚in accordance with common experience and observation of mankind. Verily. 2002 People vs. We however modify the award of civil Marcial positive because Morcillo. JANUARY 29.‛15 We disagree. vivid and detailed account of the incident and identification of all the it is clear. Cuenca The Trial Court’s Ruling The RTC convicted was appellants credible.

QWhere was your house on that date. QWhat did you do when you heard this commotion of people and barking of the dog and the dogs of your neighbors? AI went out of the house and looked for [what] the commotion was all about[. Q What did you see when you looked [for] where this commotion [was] coming [from] or what was causing this commotion? A I saw a person being beaten by four (4) persons sir. Cuenca QYou said we. QHow did you come to know that there was a commotion of people? AMy dog and the dogs of my neighbors were barking sir.] sir. 9:30 o’clock in the evening of February 14. who were with you in your house? AMy wife and my family sir. 1998. Q How far is that place from your own house? A About ten (10) meters sir. do you remember where you were? AI was inside my house sir. QWhat was that unusual incident that transpired? . which we reproduce in part as follows: ‚QOn February 14. Q 32 Page AYes sir. Lipa City sir. around 9:30 o’clock in the evening. JANUARY 29. February 14. 1998 inside your house in Module Subdivision. Tambo. Tambo. February 14.We are convinced that the trial court did not err in giving full faith and credence to Morcillo’s testimony. Q Were these four (4) persons or in what place in relation to your house where these four (4) persons beating one person? A In the street sir. 375. _______________ VOL. 9:30 o’clock in the evening? AAt Module Subdivision. QWhile you were then already lying down on that date. do you remember x x x any unusual incident that transpired? AThere was a commotion of people sir. 2002 129 People vs. Lipa City? AWe were already lying down sir. 1998. QWhat were you doing around that time. 1998 around 9:30 o’clock in the evening.

Cuenca Q Of these were (4) persons whom you named Gerry Cuenca while and ago Crisanto [among I was hiding behind [a] PLDT Telephone post sir. Jackson Cuenca and Gerry Cuenca sir. A Crisanto Agon. Jackson Cuenca. I recognized him. Q Who were these four (4) persons whom you saw were beating another person. Crisanto Agon and Bernie Agon? A Edok Castillo sir. Q From the place where you were hiding behind a PLDT Telephone Post.Where person? A were you when you saw four (4) persons beating one (1) 130 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Q Do you know the complete name of this Edok Castillo? A Page 33 130 . Agon them]? A the persons whom you pointed [to] a Yes sir. sir. sir. Bernie Agon. Q Were you able to recognize these four (4) persons who were beating another person? A Yes. Q Were you able to recognize the person whom these four (4) accused were beating? A Yes. Q Who was that person who was being beaten by these four (4) accused. how far [away from you] were these four (4) persons who were beating another person x x x? A 10 meters sir. Gerry Cuenca.

Cuenca Cuenca and while Bernie Agon and Crisanto Agon were holding his two hands? A 34 Page A Left hand sir. Q When you said that the father and son were holding Edok Castillo while the brothers were beating him. Q How was Crisanto Agon holding Edok Castillo while the brothers were beating Edok Castillo? A The father and son were holding [both hands of] Edok Castillo. Jackson Cuenca. Q What hand was Crisanto Agon holding? Edok Castillo while he was beating Edok Castillo? A He was standing towards the left front of Edok Castillo sir. where was he positioned in relation to Bernie Agon beating this Edok Castillo? A The father and son were holding Edok Castillo and the brothers were beating him sir. Crisanto Agon and Q How about Bernie Agon. Q How about Gerry Cuenca? Where was he positioned in relation to Edok Castillo when he was beating Edok? A Right front portion of Edok Castillo sir. .I quite remember. Q And how were Gerry Cuenca. JANUARY 29. what hand of Edok Castillo was he holding? A The right hand sir. who are you referring to when you said the father and son? A Crisanto Agon and Bernie Agon sir. Q Aside from stooping down. Q How about Jackson Cuenca. sir. 2002 People vs. what else was Edok Castillo doing while he was being beaten by Gerry Cuenca and Jackson VOL. 375. it is Alfredo Castillo.

He lost consciousness sir. Q Why do you say that he lost consciousness? A ‘Lumugmok na po siya’. Q But before Edok Castillo actually fe[l]l or ‘lumugmok’ what was he doing while he was being beaten up? A He could not do anything anymore sir. Q After Wilfredo anything more? A [T]hey carried him towards Calabarzon, sir. Q By the way, how many times did Gerry Cuenca and Jackson Cuenca hit Edok Castillo? A I could not remember, but he was hit several times, sir. Q In what part or parts of the body of Edok Castillo was he hit by th[o]se beating [him up], if he was ever hit? Witness pointing his face, to his head, to his chest and to his right face below the eye. Q You said that after Gerry Cuenca and Jackson Cuenca [beat] up Edok Castillo while he was being held [by] his two (2) hands by Crisanto and Bernie Agon, he fell down or ‘lumugmok’ [and] he was carried to Calabarzon[;] what do you mean by this Calabarzon? A The highway going to Batangas sir. Castillo [fell] or lumugmok, what did Gerry Cuenca,

They help[ed] each other in carrying him sir. Q How did they carry actually this Edok Castillo? A The two (2) were carrying him by [both his] hands[,] one [holding] on each hand and the other two (2) were holding on [both his] feet sir.16 On cross-examination Morcillo consistently maintained, despite intense

Jackson Cuenca, Crisanto Agon and Bernie Agon do to him if they did

grilling and repeated attempts of the defense counsel to _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Cuenca discredit him, that appellants were the ones who had mauled the victim. True, of the defense that counsel resulted tried in to impeach his credibility in his during the cross-examination by leading him through an intricate and annoying maze questions minor inconsistencies testimonial declarations. Nevertheless, Morcillo remained steadfast in his narration of what he had witnessed on the night of February 14, 1998. So long as the witnesses’ testimonies and agree on substantial dilute matters, their

inconsequential

inconsistencies

contradictions

neither

credibility nor the verity of their testimonies.17 In the instant case, the inconsistencies cited by appellants are insignificant and immaterial to the essential fact testified to—the killing of the victim.18 As a rule, this Court will not disturb the factual findings of the trial court, because it had a better opportunity to observe the demeanor and conduct weight of and the of is the witnesses witnesses even while and they their and were binding, testifying. is if not Indeed, to tainted its great with assessment credibility entitled

35
Page

Q How did the four (4) carry Edok Castillo towards the Calabarzo[n] which is the road according to you going to Batangas City? A

conclusive

arbitrariness or oversight of some fact or circumstance of significance and value.19 This Court has ruled in a number of cases20 that the testimony of a witness, if credible and positive, is sufficient for conviction because truth is established not by the quantity, but by the quality of the evidence. Second Issue: Cause of the Victim’s Death Appellants also contend that Morcillo did not see how the victim was stabbed. All he said was that he saw them beat up the victim _______________ VOL. 375, JANUARY 29, 2002 People vs. Cuenca with a piece of wood. Thus, they said that the trial court erred in concluding that the deceased had succumbed, not to multiple stab wounds, but to injuries caused by a piece of wood.21 In the absence of direct evidence, appellants may be convicted on the basis of circumstantial evidence. The latter is defined as ‚that which indirectly proves a fact in issue through an inference which the fact finder draws from the evidence established. Resort thereto is essential when the lack of direct testimony would result in setting a felon free.‛22 Circumstantial evidence suffices to convict if the following requisites

To require direct eyewitness testimony when circumstantial evidence is sufficiently established would, in many cases, expose society to felons who would be unreasonably set free.24 _______________

21 The trial court resorted to circumstantial evidence, as follows: ‚Gerry Cuenca and Crisanto Agon were positively identified as present at the place of the incident at the time of its commission; that Crisanto was positively identified as one of the two (2) persons holding one of the hand[s] of Wilfredo Castillo; that Gerry Cuenca was also positively identified as the person at the right front of Wilfredo Castillo and one of the two (2) persons who beat Wilfredo Castillo with a piece of wood; that Gerry Cuenca and Crisanto Agon were also identified as two (2) of the four (4) persons who carried the unconscious Wilfredo Castillo towards the Calabarzon Highway going to the direction of Batangas City; and [that], the next day, the victim was found dead with several stab wounds and abrasions. All told the circumstantial evidence for the prosecution surmounted the constitutional presumption of innocence.‛ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Cuenca In the present case, the postmortem examination shows that the victim sustained multiple lacerations and abrasions plus eight stab wounds.25 The following pieces of circumstantial evidence show beyond reasonable doubt that appellants are responsible for the killing: First, Morcillo positively identified appellants as members of around 9:30 in the evening on February 14, 1998. the group

concur: (1) more than one circumstance is present, (2) the facts from which the inferences are derived are proven, and (3) the combination of all the circumstances produces a conviction beyond reasonable doubt.

36

The totality of the evidence must constitute an unbroken chain showing beyond reasonable doubt the guilt of the accused, to the exclusion of all others.23

that had ganged up on the victim and mauled him near his residence

Page

Second, victim.

the

witness

saw appellants

acting

in

unison—beating

up

then

Defense of Alibi Well-settled is the rule that alibi is the weakest of all defenses, because it is easy to concoct and difficult to disprove. For alibi to prosper, it is not enough for the accused to prove that they were somewhere else when the crime was committed; they must likewise demonstrate that it was physically impossible for them to have been at the scene of the crime at the time.26 In the case before us, appellants claim that at the time the crime

carrying towards the Calabarzon Highway—the unconscious body of the

Third, the victim’s corpse was recovered the next day inside a well, which was less than a kilometer away from the place of the mauling. Fourth, the victim suffered all from of multiple which stab wounds, that he abrasions, had been

contusions

and

lacerations,

indicated

heavily beaten up. This was consistent with the narration of Morcillo on how he saw appellants maul the victim less than 24 hours before the dead body was discovered. Fifth, appellants were the last persons seen with the victim before he died. Sixth, the other accused, Jackson Cuenca (brother of Appellant Gerry Cuenca) and Bernie Agon (son of Appellant Crisanto Agon) fled from their residence in Lipa City, and they have continuously evaded arrest up to the present. Finally, Morcillo had no ill motive to testify against appellants. From the foregoing circumstances, it is undisputed that appellants were physically present at the locus criminis and its immediate vicinity, and that an eyewitness positively identified them to be members of the group that had mauled and removed the victim from the crime scene prior to the discovery of his corpse. _______________ VOL. 375, JANUARY 29, 2002 135

happened, they the RTC said:

were at the

residence of Roger Dimaculangan, which

was located also at Barangay Tambo, Lipa City. Dismissing this claim,

‚Alibi and denial are inherently weak and easily contrived. This is why the accused must prove with clear and convincing evidence that it was physically impossible for him to have been present at the place and time the felony was committed. This the accused failed to do. The distance between the house of Roger Dimaculangan, where both accused claimed to be at the time the f[e]lony was committed and the locus criminis is just a few kilometers away. It can be travelled in a few minutes by bicycle. Thus, it was not impossible for Gerry Cuenca and Crisanto Agon to leave and, after killing Wilfredo Castillo, return to the house of Dimaculangan without anybody noticing their absence. In any event, whom to the alibi he and saw denial helping of cannot each overcome other City. in the categorical and the and credible Wilfredo positive testimony of Marcial Morcillo identifying both accused as among those holding is beating rule that Castillo and thereafter carrying him towards [C]alabarzon Highway going direction Batangas Basic identification prevails over denial and alibi.‛27 Thus, it was not physically impossible for appellants to have been at scene of the crime their on the evening that of February were 14, also 1998, at the notwithstanding friends’ testimonies they

37

People vs. Cuenca Third Issue:

Page

Dimaculangan residence.

_______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Cuenca Conspiracy and Treachery The trial court did not err in finding appellants guilty of murder because treachery, which was alleged in the Information, had attended the killing. On this point, the trial court aptly explained: ‚Article 14 (16) of the Revised Penal Code provides that there is

commit the crime; it is sufficient that they acted in concert pursuant to the same objective.30 Despite affirming appellants’ conviction, we nonetheless modify the

monetary awards. _______________ VOL. 375, JANUARY 29, 2002 People vs. Cuenca The award life of is P50,000 in accord as indemnity ex delicto for the loss of the the

treachery when the offender commits any of the crimes against persons, employing means, methods o[r] forms in the execution thereof which tend directly and specifically to insure its execution without risk to himself arising from the defense which the offended party might make. In the instant case, Crisanto and Bernie Agon were holding both hands of Wilfredo Castillo, while Gerry and Jackson Cuenca were beating him with a piece of wood on the different parts of his body. Wilfredo Castillo was unarmed and defenseless. Hence, treachery was present.‛28 Treachery is present when the following conditions are present: (1) the means of execution employed gives the victims no opportunity to defend themselves deliberately succeeded or or in to retaliate, that and (2) the In means this together case, with of execution the their are consciously showing adopted. appellants, prosecution co-accused

victim’s

with

prevailing

jurisprudence.31

Likewise,

award of P20,000 as moral damages is reasonable. However, the actual damages granted is improper and should be reduced from P38,800 to P7,300 considering that only the latter amount, representing burial expenses, was duly supported by receipts. The unsubstantiated balance of P31,500 should be deleted.32 We also find the court a quo’s award of P4,800,000 for loss of earning capacity to be improper. True, in People v. Verde,33 we granted an award for the loss of earning capacity to the heirs of the deceased despite the absence of documentary evidence to substantiate such claim. We deemed the testimony of the victim’s wife sufficient to establish the basis for the grant. However, the new ruling in People v. Panabang34 modifies this principle and now precludes an award for loss of earning capacity without adequate proof. The bare testimony of the brother of the deceased Felicisimo Castillo that, at the time of his death, Wilfredo Castillo was earning P250.00 daily as carpenter35 is not sufficient proof. In Panabang, we held duly that the indemnification Jose for loss of earning the

(who are still at large), helped each other in ensuring the execution of their nefarious intention to beat up and kill the victim who was unarmed and with no opportunity to defend himself. The prosecution was likewise able to show that there was conspiracy.

38

Conspiracy exists when two or more persons come to an agreement and decide on the commission of a felony.29 It is not necessary that there be direct proof that the co-conspirators had any prior agreement to

capacity

must be

proven. Justice

C. Vitug, expressing

current view of the Court, wrote: ‚Indemnification for loss of earning capacity partakes of the nature of actual damages which must be duly proven. A self-serving statement,

Page

being unreliable, is not enough. The father of the victim has testified on the latter’s monthly income of P12,000.00. But for lost income to be recovered, there must likewise be an unbiased proof of the deceased’s average, not just gross, income. An award for lost of earning capacity refers to the net income of the deceased, i.e., his total income net of expenses. x x x.‛36 (Emphasis in the original, citations omitted) _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Vistan vs. Angeles WHEREFORE, the assailed Decision is AFFIRMED but the actual

damages awarded by the RTC is REDUCED from P35,850 to P7,300 while the grant of P4,800,000 for loss of earning capacity is DELETED. SO ORDERED. Melo concur. Judgment affirmed with modification. Notes.—Conspiracy may be proved by circumstantial evidence. (People vs. Regalario, 220 SCRA 368 [1993]) A and circumstantial which was evidence not which has not been by adequately itself, be established, basis of (Chairman), Vitug, Sandoval-Gutierrez and Carpio, JJ.,

corroborated,

cannot,

the

conviction. (People vs. Ilaoa, 233 SCRA 231 [1994]) ——o0o—— [People vs. Cuenca, 375 SCRA 119(2002)]

Page

39

No. L-11037. December 29, 1960] EDGARDO CARIAGA, ET AL., plaintiffs and appellants vs. LAGUNA TAYABAS BUS COMPANY, def endant and appellant. MANILA RAILROAD COMPANY, defendant and appellee. 1.DAMAGES; MORAL DAMAGES; RECOVERABLE ONLY IN INSTANCES ENUMERATED IN ART. 2219 OF THE CIVIL CODE.—Article 2219 of the Civil Code enumerates the instances when moral damages may be recovered. Plaintiffs' claim for moral damages not falling under any one of them, the same cannot be granted. 2.ID.; ID.; WHEN RECOVERABLE FOR BREACH OF CONTRACT

APPEAL

from a

judgment of the

Court of First Instance

of Laguna.

Alikpala, J. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. Ozaeta, Lichauco & Picazo for defendant and appellant. E. appellants. Gov't appellee. DIZON, J.: Corp. Counsel A. Padilla and Atty. F. A. Umali for A. Fernandez and L. H. Fernandez for plaintiffs and

UNDER ART. 2220 OF THE CIVIL CODE.—Neither could defendant LTB be held liable to pay moral damages to plaintiffs under Art. 2220 of the Civil Code on account of breach of its contract of carriage because said defendant did not act fraudulently or in bad faith in connection therewith. 3.ID.; ACTUAL AND COMPENSATORY DAMAGES; ONLY PARTIES TO CONTRACTS BREACHED ARE ENTITLED TO COMPENSATORY DAMAGES RESULTING THEREFROM—Since the present action is based upon a breach of contract of carriage and plaintiff's parents were not a party merit. VOL. 110, DECEMBER 29, 1960 Cariaga vs. Laguna Tayabas Bus Company 4.ATTORNEYS-AT-LAW THE ClVIL CODE.—The ; ATTORNEY'S present case FEES; not CASE NOT any FALLING of the thereto their and claim were for not actual themselves and injured as a result is of the collision, compensatory damages without

At about 1:00 p. m. on June 18, 1952, Bus No. 133 of the Laguna Tayabas Alfredo Laguna, Bus with Company—hereinafter left its station a Edgardo Cariaga, referred at to as the LTB—driven for of student by Lilio, the Moncada, Azcarraga St., medical Manila,

fourth-year

University of Santos Tomas, as one of its passengers. At about 3:00 p. m., as the bus reached that part of the población of Bay, Laguna, where the national highway crossed a railroad track, it bumped against the engine of a train then passing by with such terrific force that the first six wheels of the latter were derailed, the engine and front part of the body of the bus were wrecked, the driver of the bus died instantly, while many of its passengers, Edgardo among them, were severely injured. Edgardo was first confined at the San Pablo City Hospital from 5:00 p.m., June 18, 1952, to 8:25 a. m., June 20 of the same year when he was taken to the De los Santos Clinic, Quezon City. He left that clinic on October 14 to be transferred to the University of Santo Tomás Hospital where he stayed up to November 15. On this last date he was taken back to the De los PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED

UNDER ANY OF THE INSTANCES ENUMERATED IN ART. 2208 OF falling under instances enumerated in Article 2208 of the Civil Code, plaintiffs are not entitled to recover attorney's fees.

Page

40

medical and miscellaneous expenses incurred from June 18.000. 1953 up to ApriI of the same year Edgardo stayed in a private house in Quezon City.00 as actual. Gustilo removed the fractured bones which lacerated the right frontal lobe of his brain and at the University of Santo Tomas Hospital Dr. for not providing a crossing bar at the point where the national highway crossed the railway track. 110. the LTB's principal contention in this appeal is that the trial court should have held that the collision was due to the fault of both the locomotive driver and the bus driver and erred.194. The lower court held that it was the negligence of the bus driver that caused the accident and. We shall first dispose of the appeal of the bus company. the total sum of P312. Gustilo performed another operation to cover a big hole 011 the right frontal part of the head with a tantalum plate. On April 24. as a consequence.00 as compensatory damages to Edgardo. violated the law. and second. he sounded a long whistle which lasted up to the time the train was about to cross it. alleging that it was the reckless negligence of the bus driver that caused the accident. and for his LTB parents.Cariaga vs. From this decision the Cariagas and the LTB unconscious during the first 35 days after the accident: at the De los Santos Clinic Dr. the P18.00 same concepts. the Manila Railroad Company. On the other hand.00 daily during his convalescence. After considering the evidence presented by both parties the lower court expressly found: "* * * While the train was approximately 300 meters from the crossing. DECEMBER 29. sum of moral and in exemplary the damages. and dismissing the cross-claim against the Manila Page 41 . the LTB having agreed to give him a subsistence allowance of P10.75 representing the expenses paid to Edgardo Cariaga. in turn. Laguna Tayabas Bus Company Railroad appealed. in not holding the Manila Railroad Company liable upon the cross-claim filed against it.490. The Manila Railroad Company. in sounding the whistle only when the collision was about to take place instead of at a distance at least 300 meters from the crossing. denied liability upon the complaint and cross-claim. Its first contention is that the driver of the train locomotive.000. with interest at the legal rate from the filing of the complaint. 1953 the present action was filed to recover for Edgardo Cariaga. The Cariagas claim that the trial court erred: in awarding only Company. The P10. 1953. and two short whistles and upon reaching a point about 100 meters from the highway. as a result.964. having spent in this connection the total sum of P775. in not ringing the locomotive bell at all.30 in addition to the amount already referred to. compensatory. causing the first six wheels of the latter to be derailed.00 as compensatory damages. the engineer sounded two long. first. 1960 Cariaga vs. Laguna Tayabas Bus Company Santos Clinic where he stayed until January 15. rendered judgment sentencing the LTB to pay Edgardo Cariaga the sum of P10.. and for this reason filed the corresponding cross-claim against the latter company to recover the total sum of P18. Both contentions are without merits.45 for all the hospital. 1952 to April 1953. From January 15. from the LTB and the MRR Co. and in not sentencing appellant LTB to pay attorney's fees. The LTB paid the sum of P16." * * * * * * * disclaimed liability claiming that the accident was due to the negligence of its co-defendant. like the bus driver. He was VOL. The bus proceeded on its way without slackening its speed and it bumped against the train engine.490. in not awarding them actual and moral damages.

Laguna Tayabas Bus Company From the deposition of Dr. Fernandez. that he has become completely misfit for any kind of work. therefore. the driver of the bus No.. All witnesses for the plaintiffs and the defendants are uniform in stating that they heard the train whistle sometime before the impact and considering that some of them were in the bus at the time. it appears that. his right forehead was fractured necessitating the removal of practically all of the right frontal lobe of his brain. On the PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Cariaga us. while—as the LTB itself now admits (Brief p. a psychiatrist. the fact Manila or Railroad Company. the LTB claims that the engineer of the locomotive failed to ring the bell altogether. bus which arrived ahead at the crossing. with contributory negligence. DECEMBER 29. because of the physical injuries suffered by Edgardo. sufficient of we to Gregorio do not Ilusondo. find his in a the witness record We for any have.B. that the whistle of the locomotive was sounded four times—two long and two short—"as the train was approximately 300 meters from the crossing". Upon the whole evidence on the matter. Notwithstanding the efforts exerted by the LTB to assail his circumstance no other discredit testimony. The other L. 110. had the burden of proving it affirmatively because a violation of law is never presumed. the train to pass and so nothing violation of section 91 of Article 1459. From the testimony of Dr." alternative but to accept the findings of the trial court to the eff ect. claim that the award of P10. The former. a neurosurgeon. his mentality has been so reduced that he can no longer finish his studies as a medical student. After a careful consideration of the evidence on this point we find their contention to be well founded. incorporated in the charter of the said MRR Co. heeded the warning.by stopping and allowing happened to said vehicle. the driver thereof must have heard it because he was seated on the left front part of the bus and it was his duty and concern to observe such fact in connection with the safe operation of the vehicle. The Cariagas. paid heed to the warning and stopped before the "crossing"."* * * that the train whistle had been sounded several times before it reached the crossing. that due to the replacement of the right frontal bone of his head with a tantalum plate Edgardo has to lead a quite and retired life because "if the tantalum plate is pressed in or dented it would cause his death. as a result of the injuries suffered by Edgardo. it may be gathered that. that another LTB bus which arrived at the crossing ahead of the one where Edgardo Cariaga was a passenger. But to charge the MRR Co. Jose A. Laguna Tayabas Bus Company other hand. This contention—as is obvious—is the very f oundation of the cross-claim interposed by the LTB against its co-defendant. and has to use a brace on his left leg and feet.000.T. in .00 compensatory damages to Edgardo is inadequate considering the nature and the after effects of the physical injuries suffered by him. 5)—the driver of the bus in question totally 42 Page disregarded the warning. as appellants." The above findings of the lower court are predicated mainly upon the testimony credibility. 1960 Cariaga vs. therefore. VOL. 133 totally ignored the whistle and noise produced by the approaching train and instead he tried to make the bus pass the crossing before the train by not stopping' a few meters from the railway track and in proceeding ahead. secondly. firstly. the lower court found that the removal of the right frontal lobe of the brain of Edgardo reduced his intelligence by about 50 % . Romeo Gustilo. The record discloses that this burden has not been satisfactorily discharged. that he can hardly walk around without someone helping him.

to the reasons given above. Laguna Tayabas Bus Company be deemed to be within the same category because they could have reasonably been foreseen by the parties at the time he boarded the bus No. Inc. .000. is liable shall be those that are the natural and probable consequences of the breach and which the parties had foreseen or could have reasonably foreseen at the time the obligation was constituted. that the income which Edgardo Cariaga could earn if he should finish the medical course and pass the corresponding board examinations must PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Cariaga vs. a witness for the amount P300. income could could medical as the practitioner. 1960 Cariaga vs. 110. according to Dr. Amado Doria. 2201 of the Civil Code the Edgardo follows: Cariaga's claim for moral damages and attorney's fees was denied by the trial court. that the compensatory damages awarded to Edgardo Cariaga should be increased to P25. While his scholastic record may not be first rate (Exhibits 4. Laguna Tayabas Bus Company We agree with the trial court and. however. the pertinent portion of its decision reading as "Plaintiffs' claim for moral damages cannot also be granted. 533) : "A mere perusal of plaintiff's complaint will show that his action against the defendant is predicated on an alleged breach of contract of carriage.. The present action cannot come under paragraph 2 of said article the because as such Laguna it is not of one the Bus of quasidelict and and cannot be considered between because Tayabas pre-existing contractual Edgardo relation Cariaga. and so holds. damages for which the obligor. At that time he was already a fourth-year student in medicine in a reputable university. hospital and other expenses in the total sum of P17. 4-A to 4C). both physically and mentally.00. 133 owned and operated by the LTB. We are of the opinion. Edgardo because Cariaga this is also does not not entitled fall to recover any of for the attorney's case under instances enumerated in Article 2208 of the Civil Code. sufficient the to justify that of he the assumption possibly easily that earn be he as could a have finished the course and would have passed the board test in due time.e.719. the failure of the that defendant plaintiff to bring when him he 'safely received and the without injuries mishaps' to his destination. and it is to be noted that the chauffeur of defendant's taxicab used 43 Page Upon consideration of all the facts mentioned heretofore. we add those given by this Court in Cachero vs. 523. this Court is of the opinion. DECEMBER 29. he is now in a helpless condition." VOL. provided such damages.. virtually an invalid.. Company Neither could defendant Laguna Tayabas Bus Company be held liable to pay moral damages to Edgardo Cariaga under Article 2220 of the Civil Code on account of breach of its contract of carriage because said defendant did not act fraudulently or in bad faith in connection therewith. have been duly proved. Manila Yellow Taxicab Co.75 are within this category. it appears that.00 expected minimum monthly income of Edgardo had he finished his studies. (101 Phil. "The plaintiff fees. nevertheless. Defendant Laguna Tayabas Bus Company had exercised due diligence in the selection and supervision of its employees like the drivers of its buses in connection with the discharge of their duties and so it must be considered an obligor in good faith. 2199 of the same Code. 530. Appellant LTB admits that under Art. As the regards LTB.The impression one gathers f rom this evidence is that. it is. Upon this premise it claims that only the actual damages suffered by Edgardo Cariaga consisting of medical. i. guilty of a breach of contract but who acted in good faith. Article 2219 of the Civil Code enumerates the instances when moral damages may be covered and the case under consideration does not fall under any one of them. as a result of the physical injuries suffered by Edgardo Cariaga. according to Art.

2219. Altho (a) owners and managers of an establishment or enterprise are responsible for damages caused by their employees in the service of the branches in which the latter are employed or on the occasion of their functions. We find. (8) Malicious prosecution. or other lascivious acts. obligations it was do agreed to use from the term 'quasi-delict' for those which not arise law. 26. 'Aquilian fault' might have been selected. has not even been made a party punished therefor. Gregorio Mira. 2219. Article 2219 of the Civil Code. of the Civil Code). hold that the case at bar does not come within the exception of paragraph 1. From the report of the Code Commission on the new Civil Code We copy the following: 'A question of nomenclature confronted the Commission. culpa-extra-contractual' or 'cuasi-delitos'.involved herein. 2. is he entitled to compensation for moral damages? Article 2219 of the Civil Code says the following: 'Art. to the with first this one that case that the defendant 'criminal the herein offense has not committed in the plaintiff in is connection any offense resulting physical Page The committed against Gregorio Mira. therefore. We. "Considering. 32. (6) Illegal search. Moral damages may be recovered in the following and employers engaged any industry analogous cases: (1) A criminal offense resulting in physical injuries. Revised Penal Code). (7) Libel. Laguna Tayabas Bus Company in the discharge of their duties (Art. and is in harmony with the nature of this kind of liability. but as a result of an admitted breach of contract of carriage and against the defendant employer alone. the nature of plaintiff's action in this case. which more nearly corresponds to the Roman Law classification of obligations. 103. After a careful deliberation. (b) employers are likewise liable for damages caused by their and employees corporations and household in helpers kind acting of within the are scope of their assigned task (Article 218 of the Civil Code). aquiliana'. but it was thought inadvisable to refer to so ancient a law as the 'Lex Aquilia'. "The present complaint is not based either on a 'quasi-delict causing physical injuries' (Art. (4) Adultery or concubinage. (9) Acts mentioned in Article 309. rape. 30. therefore. (3) Seduction. quasi-contracts. par. So 'quasi-delict' was chosen.' "Of the cases enumerated in the just quoted Article 2219 only the first two may have any bearing on the case at bar. abduction. however. They are known in Spanish legal treatises as 'culpa. 29. (10) Acts and actions referred to in Articles 21. plaintiff herein does not maintain this action under the provisions of any of the articles of the codes just mentioned and against all the persons who might be liable for the damages caused. slander or any other form of defamation. 34 and 35. and that is why he has been already prosecuted and . contracts. 27. with 44 regard injuries'. (5) Illegal or arbitrary detention or arrest. * * * * * subsidiary civilly liable for felonies committed by their employees PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Cariaga vs. 28. or criminal offenses. and (c) defendant to this case. (2) Quasi-delicts causing physical injuries. The phrase 'culpa-extracontractual' or its translation 'extra-contractual-fault' was eliminated because it did not exclude quasi-contractual or penal obligations.

from the breach of that contract by reason of the failure of defendant to exercise due care in its performance. Bautista Angelo. [Cariaga vs. "In view of the foregoing the sum of P2. 46 Off. vs. J. Labrador. (82 Phil... that article relates only to CULPA AQUILIANA. 110. Parás. Laguna Tayabas Bus Company.' and not to CULPA CONTRACTUAL. concur. and that the obligation to respond for the damage which plaintiff has suffered arises. 346(1960)] obligations—or to use the technical form of expression. p. 5. 758) and others. Manila Railroad. 1960 Cariaga vs. Barrera. Article 1903 only is not to applicable to obligations CONTRACTU. Reyes.. Thus. Judgment affirmed with modification. Acro Taxicab Co. of and contract of the spouses that established the distinction between obligation derived from negligence and obligation as a result of a breach of contract. false imprisonment and deceit. if at all. 359. 38 Phil. in so far as the LTB is concerned. its liability is direct and immediate. In the general plan of the Philippine legal system.. But "tort" under that system is much broader than Spanish-Philippine concept of obligations arising non-contractual negligence. We damages by the trial court has to be eliminated. 2023). such as assault and battery. although certain exceptions are made in the Project/ (Report of the Code Commission. modified as above indicated. are not applicable to the case at bar because said decisions . JJ. 'Tort' in AngloAmerican jurisprudence includes not only negligence. Lilius et al. of LTB carriage f or the to the present which simple action said is based were they upon not a a not breach party. C. differing essentially in the VOL. 110 Phil. imposed by Article 1903 of the Civil Code (Art. pp. vs. intentional and malicious acts are governed by the Penal Code. "In the case of Cangco. Manila Railroad. we said: 'lt is important to note that the foundation of the legal liability of the defendant is the contract of carriage. for under the law it is not a compensation awardable in a case like the one at bar.000 awarded as moral "tort" from Anglo-American law. but also intentional criminal act. Wherefore.' 45 Page "The decisions in the cases of Castro vs. J. DECEMBER 29. with costs against appellant LTB. 2180 of the new). No." What has been said heretofore relative to the moral damages claimed by Edgardo Cariaga obviously applies with greater force to a similar claim (4th assignment of error) made by his parents. Bengzon. and Paredes. which can be rebutted by proof of the exercise of due care in their selection arising of EX supervision.The Commission also the thought of the possibility of adopting the word from were rendered before the effectivity of the new Civil Code (August 30. That is to say. As held by the trial court. the appealed judgment is hereby affirmed in all other respects. Gutierrez David. but extra-contractual neither can they premise their claim upon the negligence or quasidelict reason were themselves injured as a result of the collision between the LTB bus and the train owned by the Manila Railroad Company. wherein moral damages were awarded to the plaintiffs. 161-162).. The claim made by said spouses for actual and compensatory damages is likewise without merits.. Gaz.. B. Laguna Tayabas Bus Company legal viewpoint from that presumptive responsibility for the negligence of its servants. L. 59 Phil. 768. 1950) and for the further reason that the complaints filed therein were based on different causes of action.

under Article 1756 of the Civil Code. (d) the report of the Weather Bureau at the time showed that visibility was 15 miles between Romblon and SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Davila vs. Indemnity of death of passenger is P12.—–Article 1756 of the New Civil Code fixes the burden of proof by providing that ‚in case of death of or injuries to passengers. (b) the plane deviated from the prescribed route by 32 miles to the west when it Page . Same.. unless they prove that they observed extraordinary diligence as prescribed in articles 1733 and 1755. plaintiffs-appel-lants. to observe extraordinary diligence vigilance passengers transported by them according to all the circumstances of each case. PEDRO R. circumstances relating to his physical condition may reduce this to 25 years. Same. carriers.—–Article 1733 of the New Civil in Code the binds common . Philippine Air Lines No.‛ Same.—–The facts of the case at bar showed 46 that (a) the pilot did not intercept airway ‚Amber I‛ over Romblon as it was supposed to do.000 feet elevation were ‚scattered‛ and the profile of the probable weather cross-section along airway ‚Amber I‛ during the flight shows that at 6. one’s normal life expectancy is 33-1/3 years according to the standard of care required of it.‛ Same. the accident may directly attributable. cannot be dispensed with or lessened by stipulation. at least between Romblon and Manila.000 feet (the plane’s prescribed altitude) the airline was clear and free of clouds. Same. However.700 to 7. otherwise. TIRO. (e) the defendant airline’s investigating team reported that ‚the probable cause (of the accident) was the inability of the pilot to intersect airway ‘Amber I’ over Romblon and maintain track within its designated airway lane for reason unknown‛.000. common carriers are presumed to have been at fault or to have acted negligently. . vs. Same. PHILIPPINE AIR LINES. Baco and that the clouds from 2. February 28. FEBRUARY 28. Philippine Air Lines Mt. or crashed. . The standard of care required of common carriers is that of extraordinary dili-gence. by statements on tickets.—–At the age of 30 years. (c) cross-winds had a velocity of either 20 to 25 knots or 25 to 35 knots an hour which considering the relatively short distance from Romblon to Mt. and that the pilot did not give his position then although Romblon was a compulsory checking point. . 49. HELD: The pilot’s action was a violation of air-traf-fic be rules to which. and (f) the pilot did not follow the route prescribed for his flight.‛ Same. DAVILA and PRECIOSA C. Same. under any the case. . Normal lifespan of the deceased who was single and 30 years old when he died is 33-1/3 years. 1973 Davila vs. Same. Responsibility of common carriers for safe-ty of passengers cannot be dispensed with by notice and stipu-lations. .VOL. Burden of proof that extraordinary diligence in transporting passengers was observed is on the common car-rier.00. 1973.—–Pursuant to current jurisprudence on the indemnity due to the heirs of the deceased who was the victim of a tortious act. for the ‚from safety the of nature the of their business and by reasons of public policy. Facts showing common carrier did not observe the by the posting of notices. Same. the amount should be increased to P12. Common carriers.—–Article 1757 of the New Civil Code states that ‚the responsibility of a common carrier for the safety of passengers .000. defendant-appellant Torts and damages. L-28512. In absent a satisfactory explanation on the part of the defendant as to who and why the accident occurred the presumption is that it was at fault. cross-winds with the velocity stated could not have possibly deviated the plane by as much as 32 miles. . Baco (crash site) and the brief span of time it would take to fly that distance. circumstances.

for purposes of these case. (P60. C.00). Same. here to exercise extraordinary diligence. lawyer-practitioner and farmer).00 is the amount which should be awarded to the plaintiffs. Dizon. ‚Earning Capacity‛ under Art. or P195.800 net yearly income multiplied by 25 years. Reyna. as required by law. but rather the loss of that portion of VOL. Philippine Air Lines the earnings which the beneficiary would have received. vs. the court may award exemplary damages in contracts and quasi-contracts if the defendant acted in a wanton.000. as follows: ‚(1) For the death of Pedro T. chest occasional tiredness. J. Davila and Preciosa C.000.00 a year (as radio station manager. oppressive or malevolent manner. reckless. only net earnings. Jr. not gross earnings. although the deceased was in relatively good health. the total of the earnings less expenses necessary in the creation of such earnings or income and less living and other incidental expenses. However.000. Philippine Air Lines at the rate of P12.—–The amount recoverable The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court.000. 2206(1) in relation to Art. In the case at bar. Same. Inc.000. (31 SCRA 511) on the basis of the American Expectancy Table of Mortality or the Actuarial of Combined Experience Table of Mortality. the amount of P6. 1973 Davila vs. FEBRUARY 28. a reduction of his life expectancy to 25 years. does not amount provision. Same.00. defendant) judgment was rendered ordering the defendant to pay the plaintiffs various sums of money. the de-ceased’s earnings from three sources of income was P15. (2) For the loss of the earning capacity of the deceased SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Davila vs..000. Davila. Tirol. APPEAL from a judgment of the Court of First Instance of Iloilo. that is.00 per annum for five (5) years in the amount of Sixty Thousand Pesos. Belo & Ongsiako for defendant- heirs of a victim of tort is not loss of the entire earnings. Philippine Air Lines.formula adopted by this Court in Villa Rey Transit vs. is reasonable.A. Siguion appellant. Same. to anyone of the circumstances contemplated in the said Rodriguez. When exemplary damages not justified. plaintiffs. The amount of P7. MAKALINTAL. fraudulent.—–Under Article 2232 47 of the Civil Code. his medical history shows that he had complained pains of and and been treated feeling for of such ailments It as is backaches. Davila for plaintiffsappellants.00 a month considering that the expenses incidental to the generation of such income were necessarily more than if he had only one source. are to be considered.00): (3) For moral damages in favor of the plaintiffs Ten Thousand Pesos (P10. reasonable to make an allowance for these circumstances and consider. A deduction of P600.: In Civil Case No. 5728 of the Court of First Instance of Iloilo (Pedro R. 1764 of the for New Civil Code own means gross earnings less necessary by the expenses deceased’s living. In other words. 49. De Guzman & Vitug and Pedro R. The failure of the defendant Page . J. Montecillo.

1973 501 Davila vs. Davila. unless they prove that they observed extraordinary diligence as prescribed in Articles 1733 and 1755. which is. the judgment having been rendered before the effectivity of Rep. using the utmost diligence of very cautious persons. a newspaper letter of reports. Philippine Air Lines could only from 19. It had flown almost 18. complete exoneration from. (5) For actual damages the amount of Five Thousand Pesos (P5. The provisions of the Civil Code on this substantive question of liability are clear and explicit. cannot be dispensed with or lessened by stipulation. one hour and fifteen minutes after takeoff. informing them that their son had died in the crash. liability. or at least mitigation of. however. until they the received. a pistol worth P300. Article 1757 states that ‚the responsibility of a common carrier for the safety of passengers . with due regard for all the circumstances. for the lot and the mausoleum P3.. Article 1733 binds common carriers. . are whether or not the defendant is liable for violation of its contract of carriage and if so. or otherwise. for the safety of the passengers transported by them according to all the circumstances of each case. 49. Baco. to observe extraordinary diligence in the vigilance . . 5440. at 5:30 in the afternoon. Iloilo. Act No.(4) For exemplary damages in the amount of Ten Thousand Pesos (P 10. In this appeal the plaintiffs seek an increase in said amounts. Mindoro. .‛ are presumed Article to 1756 fixes at the fault burden or to of proof by providing that ‚in case of death of or injuries to passengers. conflicting 1960.‛ Both parties appealed directly to this Court in view of the aggregate of the amounts awarded.‛ Article 1755 establishes the standard of care required of a common carrier. FEBRUARY 28. manufactured in 1942 and acquired by the defendant in 1948. The case arose from the tragic crash of a passenger plane of the defendant which took the lives of all its crew and passengers. .‛ being 48 Page the passengers. The plaintiffs. it took off from the Manduriao Airport. Jr. . (6) For Attorney’s fees the amount of Ten Thousand Pesos (P10.00) or a total amount of One Hundred and One Thousand Pesos (P101. by the posting of notices. denominated as airway ‚Amber I. The plane.500.000. the latter stage.00. On November 23. on December condolence from defendant’s president Andres Soriano. ‚from the nature of their business and by reasons of public policy.‛ Lastly. The issues before the trial court. .000. for how much.‛ The route prescribed by the Civil Aeronautics Administration for the flight of plane PI-C113 in the afternoon of November 23. but crashed at Mt. It did not reach its destination. A (massive search was undertaken by the defendant and by other parties as soon as it was realized that the plane’s arrival in Manila was overdue.00). ‚to carry the passengers safely as far as human care and foresight can provide. And it was only on December 29 that his body was recovered and taken back to Iloilo.00) broken down to as follows: A rolex watch valued at P600.00. including the plane’s complement.00. burial expenses P600.00) To pay the costs of this proceedings.00. who was one of VOL. getting what information they 501 . and now before Us in this appeal. Despite its age. . on its way to Manila. was a DC-3 type of aircraft. it had been certified as airworthy by the Civil Aeronautics Administration.000.000. by statements on tickets. and the defendant. 1960. parents of Pedro T. 1960 was IloiloRomblon-Manila. common carriers have been have acted negligently. with 33 people on board.000 hours at the time of its ill-fated flight. identified as PI-C133. had no definite news of what had happened to their son.

a straight lane from Romblon to Manila. which prevented him from making the corresponding correction on the basis of visual references to the terrain outside. But according to Maj. error. Baco to and which several factors contributed: ‚the weather observation at that time Bureau the say. The prescribed elevation of the flight was 6. it did not intercept airway ‚Amber I‛ over Romblon as it was supposed to do. although in the investigation of the accident by the Senate Committee on transportation . The reading of the altimeter of the plane when its There is a suggestion that in the course of the flight between Romblon and Mindoro the aircraft was drifted westward by the cross-winds then blowing in the region. the pilot failed to make the necessary correction in his flight to compensate for the drift. This point. The fact was that the plane had it there was testimony that the cross-winds had a velocity of either 20 to 25 knots or 25 to 35 knots an hour. the board is of the opinion that the probable cause was the inability of the pilot to intersect airway ‘Amber I’ over Romblon and to maintain track within its designated airway lane for reasons unknown. Jaime Manzano concluded in its report that ‚based on the limited evidences available. which was the proper flight direction. 49. has not given a definite explanation as to why. It is suggested that the pilot did not notice the drift of his plane because of poor visibility due to thick clouds. showed a reading that the aircraft was headVOL. crashed at Mt.000 ft. The plane reported its position after take-off and again when it was abeam the Roxas homer.000 ft. Philippine Air Lines ing north. Philippine Air Lines was a compulsory checking point.‛ And the profile of the probable weather crosssection along airway ‚Amber I‛ during the flight (Exh. 1973 Davila vs. Chief of the Aviation Safety Division of the Civil Aeronautics Administration and Chairman of the from of CAA the Investigating Weather for Committee. However. was there so the the was good aircraft. and the pilot did not give his position then although Romblon SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Davila vs. not of be between and Romblon and the wind aloft was quite strong. is of no vital significance in this case since it does not explain why the aircraft was 32 miles off its prescribed route in the first place. however.800 ft. cross-winds with the velocity stated could not have possibly deviated the plane by as much as 32 miles. FEBRUARY 28. a navigational Mt. 33-A) shows that at 6. The defendant. Baco and the brief span of time it would take to fly that distance. Baco. Baco and that the clouds from 2. the plane would malfunction aircraft’s navigational instrument. if such was the case.‛ deviated from the prescribed route by 32 miles to the west when wreckage was found was 6. Mijares. when found after the crash. Maj. The defendant points out that the navigational instrument on board the plane consisted of two (2) sets of automatic direction finders (ADF) which. According to the defendant’s witness. Mijares himself the report from the Weather Bureau at the time showed that visibility was 15 miles between Romblon and Mt.‛ He further explained that ‚a cross-wind can drift if the pilot will not make the necessary correction. Considering the relatively short distance from Romblon to Mt. which would be also one the causes I drifting would the of other the strong probability. Indeed even the investigating team of the defendant under the chairmanship of Capt. the airlane was clear and free of clouds. however.‛ 49 Page There is nothing in the testimony of Maj.700 to 7. elevation were ‚scattered. if his navigational instrument is malfunctioning and the visual reference outside the aircraft could not make the necessary corrections.000 ft. The suggestion therefore that the pilot was practically flying blind and consequently failed to notice the drift of the aircraft is not justified by the evidence. Mijares to show just how strong the cross-winds were in the region at the time.

200. his medical history shows that he had complained of and been treated for such ailments as backaches. Stated otherwise. This amount. In any case.00 and allowance of P100. Court of Appeals3 on the basis of the American Expectancy Table of Mortality or the Actuarial of Combined Experience Table of Mortality. or P7. It was a violation of air-traffic rules to which.1 The deceased was employed as manager of a radio station2.What is undisputed therefore is that the pilot did not follow the route prescribed for his flight. Philippine Air Lines deceased.00. . 1973 Davila vs. Philippine Air Lines ‚..‛ This Article. the total of the earnings less expenses necessary in the creation of such earnings or income and less living and other incidental expenses. FEBRUARY 28. leaving a net yearly income of P7. vs. It is reasonable to make an allowance for these circumstances and consider. According to Article 2206. seems to Us reasonable. 49. chest pains and occasional feelings of tiredness.‛ three (3) different sources. or P195. was single and 30 years of age when he died. the most reasonable conclusion is that his failure to do so was intentional.00. from which he was earning P8. Together with his living expenses. while referring to ‚damages for death caused by crime or quasidelict. a reduction of his life expectancy to 25 years.‛ the weather was clear. not gross earnings.00. as an element of damages to one’s estate for his death by wrongful act is necessarily his net earning capacity or his capacity to acquire money. only net earnings. absent a satisfactory explanation on the part of the The deceased. from managing a radio station.-000. the accident may be directly attributable. Pedro Davila.800.00 a year. from law practice and from farming. multiplied by 25 years.00. where he was supposed to intersect airway ‚Amber I. earning capacity. The next question relates to the amount of damages that should be awarded to the plaintiffs.‛ Considering the fact that the deceased was getting his income from defendant shall be liable for the loss of the earning capacity of the deceased and indemnity shall be paid to the heirs of the latter. However. In the same case of Villa Rey Transit this Court stated: __________________ VOL.‛ is expressly made applicable by Article 1764 ‚to the death of a passenger caused by the breach of contract by a common carrier. ‚the living. according to the formula (2/3 x [80—–30]) adopted by this Court in the case of Villa Rey Transit.00. that is.00 a month. Since up to that point over Romblon. at least between Romblon and Manila. are to be considered.000. he had an annual income of P3.00 a year. although the deceased was in relatively good health. From farming he was getting an average of P3. less the necessary expense for his own defendant as to how and why the accident occurred. under Article 1756 of the Civil Code. Pursuant to current jurisprudence on the point it should be increased to P12.00 a year. consisting of a monthly salary of P600. At that age one’s normal life expectancy is 33-1/3 years. .000. a deduction of P600. of the Civil Code. parents of the SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Davila vs. The trial court fixed the indemnity for his death in the amount of P6.00 is the Page 50 . the amount recoverable is not loss of the entire earnings. paragraph (1). Inc. As a lawyer and junior partner of his father in the law office. namely.000. In other words.000. but rather the loss of that portion of the earnings which the beneficiary would have received. the expenses incidental to the generation of such income were necessarily more than if he had only one source. Jr. and that he probably wanted to fly on a straight line to Manila. All in all therefore the deceased had gross earnings of P15.400. for purposes of this case. the presumption is that it was at fault.600.00. under the circumstances.

G. would or be of another where as the a defense so-called vs.00. of except 51 The total of the different items above enumerated is P232. 8. 1973 Davila vs. Burial Expenses—– P600. may thus raise the negligence Sarabia. Castro..000. plaintiff 1050). (Taylor Manila Electric Railroad & Light Co. Judgment modified. Antonio and Esguerra.00. 402). 1959.—–Liability for quasi-delict arises if the following requisites are Actual losses sustained consist of the following.00 as exemplary damages. 2794). considering the long period of uncertainty and suffering the plaintiffs underwent from November 23. We do not find this award groundless or the amount thereof unreasonable. March 4. which should be awarded to the plaintiffs in this particular interest thereon from the finality of this judgment. and again to the following December 29. (Taylor vs. when the plane crash occurred. With costs against the defendant. reckless. supra). Metropolitan Water District. Garcia & Almario.00.-00. Zaldivar. No. Teehankee. Fores vs. 607. in contracts and quasi-contracts the court may award exemplary damages if the defendant acted in a wanton. Manila Electric Railroad & Light Co.00. injury or prejudice to the offended party. present: (1) Damage. the parents of the deceased are entitled to moral damages for their mental anguish. injury or prejudice. the VOL. The judgment of the court a quo is therefore modified accordingly and the defendant is ordered to pay the said amount to the plaintiffs. With respect to the award of P10. In an action for quasi-delict. (2) An unlawful act or omission amounting to fault or negligence of which the defendant responsible.. when they received a letter from the defendant’s president confirming the death of their son.000. New Civil Code). According to Article 2232 of the Civil Code. The defendant. L-12163. 2176.000. Barredo. to December 19. C. 53 O. Camarote. when his body was finally recovered and taken back to them. pistol—– P300. (Paulan ‚Doctrine vs. 104 Phil. oppressive or malevolent manner. 73 Phil. Fernando. concur. Once the negligence of the employee is proved. personally. 49. in relation to Article 1764. The trial court awarded P10. Barredo vs. FEBRUARY 28. fraudulent..00 in this concept. . The failure of the defendant here to exercise extraordinary diligence. Attractive of 104 the Phil. Art. with legal Page Nuisance‛ applicable. was or some (3) A other direct person casual for whose acts he is the guilty. Miranda. Philippine Air Lines employer’s negligence is presumed prima facie. Philippine Air Lines nated. of the Civil Code. and (4) No pre-existing contractual relation between the parties. and We find no justification to change the award. JJ.500. Makasiar.000.amount respect. does not amount to anyone of the circumstances contemplated in the said provision. 9. connection between negligent act or omission and the damage.. it is Our opinion that the same should be elimiSUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Davila vs. The trial court has awarded attorney’s fees of P10. (Campo vs. 16 Phil. Notes. the burden of proof is on the person claiming damages to show that the proximate cause of his damage or injury was the fault of defendant or of his employee or one for whose acts he is vicariously liable (Ong vs.‛ Under Article 2206.00. as found by the trial court: ‚Rolex Watch—– P600. and cost of cemetery lot and mausoleum—– P3.J. in an action based on quasi-delict. as required by law. Concepcion.

49 SCRA 497(1973)] .U. The rule is otherwise. both tortfeasors are liable for the resulting injury even if the act of one alone might have caused 1088). Jarencio.‛ in which case such contributory negligence will bar the recovery of damages (Rakes vs.. H. where the offended party’s negligence ‚contributes to the principal occurrence as one of its determining factors. Custodio. (Sabido vs.‛ (Ong vs. has the last clear notwithstanding the negligent acts of his opponent or the negligence of a third person which is imputed to his opponent is considered in law solely responsible for the consequences of the accident. volume 1. and page 244 on Common Carriers.‛ In such cases. although the direct acting and combination.Another defense commonly available to the defendant. page 656 on Damages.‛ This doctrine states that ‚a person who chance or opportunity of avoiding an accident. Atlantic Gulf & Pacific Co. particularly in vehicular accident cases. Philippine Air Lines.. LEGAL RESEARCH SERVICE the entire injury or damage. or more in persons. Torts and Damages. are. lies in the so-called ‚Doctrine of Last Clear Chance. The defense of contributory negligence of the offended party will cause only the reduction of the damages which may be awarded to him if such contributory negligence contributes only to his own injury. —–—–—–—–—–—– Page 52 [Davila vs. supra). 359). 1972 Edition. 7 Phil. 17 SCRA See SCRA Quick Index-Digest. proximate cause of a single injury. Metropolitan Water District. This doctrine does not apply ‚where the concurrent or successive negligent acts independently or omissions of two of each other.

in order that that moral the damages claimant may be essential satisfactorily prove the existence of the factual basis of the damages and its causal relation to defendant's acts. April 16. and that a court cannot rely on "speculation. along the public highway in MacArthur. 1962. 1964)." (Section 1 of Rule 19 of the new Rules of Court). Bataan 53 Page Cigar and Cigarette Factory. L-20081. FEBRUARY 27. L18820. 1957. Tiausas for plaintiff-appellee. MELQUIADES RAAGAS and ADELA LAUDIANO RAAGAS. averment in the answer to the effect that the defendants SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Raagas vs. Traya court. June 30. Delfin v. 1960 with the Court of First Instance of Leyte (civil case 2749) by the spouses Melquiades Raagas and Adela Laudiano Raagas against Octavio Traya. necessary nevertheless. L-23348. Same. Lacson. the said vehicle ran over the plaintiffs' three-year old son Regino. Traya "have no knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations" as to such damages." APPEAL from a judgment of the Court of First Instance of Leyte. In Malonzo v. plus costs. Alabastro. Judgment on the pleadings. vs. 1967). L-19762. alleges in essence that on or about April 9. causing his instantaneous death.. Court of Agrarian Relations. Rule as to allegations for damages. Jovellanos. we reaffirmed the rule that although an allegation awarded. L7047.000.—An on actual proof that damages had been suffered and on evidence of the actual amount (Tomassi v. 1960). Same. 1968. 1958. 1968 Raagas vs. FEBRUARY 27.: The complaint filed on April 1. July 27. Same. Where answer tenders an issue. Traya No. his wife. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. Pl. 1960. Dec. Benavides v. 22. February 27. L-15861. L-12332. "the truth of the matter being that the death of Regino Raagas was occasioned by an unforeseen event and/or by the fault of the small boy Regino Raagas or his parents. Victoriano M. Realino for defendants-appellants. Rule stated. L-9419. Case at bar. nominal and corrective damages in a sum to be determined by the VOL.—A judgment on the pleadings is proper "where an answer fails to tender an issue. defendants-appellants. (Philippine National Bank v. but must depend . Aug. and Bienvenido Canciller.000 as attorney's fees. Dec. Galang." Such averment has the effect to tendering a valid issue. Actual damages must be proved.VOL. et al. conjecture or guesswork" as to the fact and amount of damages. Villa-Abrille. 22. 1960.000 for expenses of litigation. 21. 1958. OCTAVIO TRAYA and BIENVENIDO CANCILLER. plaintiffs-appellees.. et al. CASTRO. Tan Ho. or otherwise admits the material allegations of the adverse party's pleading. Leyte. OCTAVIO TRAYA. May 29. The plaintiffs ask for actual damages in the sum of P10. 1968 Raagas vs. moral. is "it not is. Lim Kiok v. Civil procedure. such damages are not deemed admitted (Abubakar Tan v. Miguel V. while the latter was "recklessly" driving a truck owned by his co-defendants. 23. Same. 20. L-13851.—Even if the allegations regarding the amount of damages in the complaint are not specifically denied in the answer. Pl. J. MRS. March 14. Suntay Tanjangco v.

however. 23. filed on April 22. P2. May 29. and considered the case submitted for decision upon the filing of the plaintiffs' memorandum. 1960. April 16. Tian Ho. Bataan Cigar and Cigarette Factory. On June 24 it rendered a judgment on the pleadings. The plaintiffs' claim f or actual. 1964. upon the claim that the defendants' answer not only "failed to tender an issue" but as well "admitted material allegations" of the complaint." The defendants appealed to the Court of Appeals. Section or 10 of Rule 35 the of the old Rules of of Court1 the authorized a attorney's fees. the defendants specifically deny that Canciller was "driving recklessly" at the time of the mishap. jointly and severally. 54 Page The court reasoned that the denial in the answer of the charge of reckless driving "did not affect the plaintiffs' positive allegation in their complaint that the truck x x x . to pay "to the plaintiffs the sum of P10. and that each time they allowed him to drive it was only after a check of his physical condition and the mechanical fitness of the truck assigned to him. Pl. requesting for postponement of the hearing to July 2 on the ground that he was sick of influenza. On the previous day." judgment on the pleadings "where an answer fails to tender an issue. he was violating any traffic regulation (article 2185. On May 4 the plaintiffs' moved for a judgment on the pleadings.000 actual damages. 1962 and Lim Giok vs.In their answer with counterclaim for moral and actual damages and SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Raagas vs.000 for attorney's fees. otherwise admits material allegations adverse party's pleading. Traya did not have a current year registration plate x x x for the year 1958 when the accident occurred. that the defendants-spouses due diligence in the selection and supervision of their driver Canciller. new Civil Code). L-15861. was controverted by the averment in the answer to the effect that the defendants "have no knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations" as to such damages. It is our view that the court erred.000 for the death of their child Regino Laudiano Raagas. Lacson. is whether the court a quo acted correctly when it rendered judgment on the pleadings. The lower court denied the request for lack of "proper notice to the adverse party". In Abubakar Tan vs. whom they hired in 1946 only after a thorough study of his background as a truck driver. Pl. Alabastro. condemning the defendants. and the costs.000 for moral damages. to which the other issues are subsidiary or interstitial. We so held in Philippine National Bank vs. L-9419. L-18820. and assert that the truck "was fully loaded and was running at a very low speed and on the right side of the road". L-19762. the clerk of court received a telegram from the defendants' counsel. Dec." The court went on to conclude that under the circumstances a judgment on the pleadings was "irremediably proper and fitting. that it was the child who "rushed from an unseen position and bumped the truck so that he was hit by the left rear tire of the said truck are not to blame for and the died". December 29. nominal and corrective damages. "the truth of the matter being that the death of Regino Raagas was occasioned by an unforeseen event and/or by the fault of the small boy Regino Raagas or his parents. 1957 and in Benavides vs. and accident consequently was have the defendants negligence which "entirely exercised attributable to an unforeseen event" or due to the fault of the child and of his parents. moral. which certified the case to this Court because the issues raised are purely of law. it is presumed that a person driving a motor vehicle has been negligent if at the time of the mishap." Such averment has the effect of tendering a valid issue." The vital issue. therefore." and that "unless there is proof to the contrary." that "this failure x x x has the ef fe ct of adm itting hypothe tica lly operated x x x the said truck without proper license x x x when the accident occurred. This motion was set for hearing on June 18.

L-23348. but must depend on actual proof that damages had been suffered and on evidence of the actual amount. "it is. 1967. and that a court cannot rely on "speculation. While no proof of pecuniary loss is necessary in order that moral damages may be awarded. Belizar. L-19487. J. C. Bengzon... No pronouncement as to costs. Galang.L. ——————————— [Raagas vs.J. fright and the like. vs. et al. In Tomassi vs. J. . et. such damages are not deemed admitted. . Angeles and Fernando. there must be pleading and proof of moral suffering. essential that the claimant satisfactorily prove the existence of the factual basis of the damage and its causal relation to defendant's acts. Galang. the judgment on the pleadings of June 24. Sept. 1960 is set aside. Inc. ACCORDINGLY.—The rule in Malonzo vs. concur. August 21. L-21879.. JJ. Republic tion of the court. the amount of indemnity being left to the discreSUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Yap vs. 19 SCRA 214). 1967. Reyes.. Jovellanos. March 14. al.P. L-13851. 1960. June 30. we declared in no uncertain terms that actual damages must be proved. nevertheless. 1968 Raagas vs. L-12332. Makalintal. where it was held that: "In order that moral damages may be awarded. in Malonzo vs. 21 SCRA 292 (citing Darang vs. Concepcion. Jan. Sanchez. L-13851.. 1958. July 27. Suntay Tanjangco vs. 1967A PHILD 453. Finally. it is nevertheless essential that the claimant should satisfactorily prove the existence of the factual basis of the damages and its causal connection to defendants' acts. Traya. 22 SCRA 839(1968)] 55 Page Zaldivar. (Italics supplied). July 27.." The preceding disquisition points up the inescapable need of a full-blown trial on the merits at which the parties will be afforded every opportunity to present evidence in support of their respective contentions and defenses. Villa_______________ VOL. FEBRUARY 27. conjecture or guesswork" as to the fact and amount of damages. Judgment set aside and case remanded to court of origin for trial on the merits. is on official leave. we reaffirmed the rule that although an allegation is not necessary in order that moral damages may be awarded. Court of Agrarian Relations. 22. et al. C. L-7047. 31. and Delfin vs.we held that even if the allegations regarding the amount of damages in the complaint are not specifically denied in the answer. mental anguish. and this case is hereby remanded to the court of origin for trial on the merits. 1967. 1960. 29. Dizon. restated in the foregoing case seems to have modified in San Miguel Brewery.J. Traya Abrille. Note.B. Actg. 1960. Magno.

REYES. L.. ACTUAL OR COMPENSATORY DAMAGES PROVED. it is. the award of attorney's fees in the instant case is correct and proper.—Although be awarded in Art.—The provision of Article 2208. ID. F. respondents. (4) of the Civil Code authorizes the recovery of attorney's fees "in case of a clearly unfounded civil action or proceeding against the plaintiff. 27 Phil. 2219 as it was in Art. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. Felixberto V. ARTICLE 2199. 5. PAR. 4.—Article 2208. M. Malonzo a loan of P5. though incapable of pecuniary estimation. 1946. L-13851. ATTORNEY'S FEES RECOVERABLE IN CLEARLY UNFOUNDED SUITS. COUNTERCLAIM OR ATTORNEY'S FEES. nevertheless. MORAL DAMAGES. or else Art 2208 would have been incorporated by reference in Art. 2216). 1.. (4) CIVIL CODE. Ejercito for respondents.ID. Galang "a clearly unfounded civil action or proceeding" to be one of those analogous cases wherein moral damages may be recovered or it would have been expressly mentioned! in Art. ARTICLE 2208. wife of Francisco G. 1960 No... considering that a counterclaim is a complaint by the defendant against the original plaintiff. of the Civil Code applies equally in favor of a defendant with a counterclaim for attorney's fees. received from Deogracias T. Galang.DAMAGES. Par. but must be duly proved (Art. an compensatory damages should not be allowed. GALANG and FRANCISCO GALANG. par.. Malonzo vs. ID.000. 4. 3. 2199). B.. Sandejas.ID. 2208. EXISTENCE OF FACTUAL BASIS MUST BE SATISFACTORILY PROVED.00 under a check which Gregoria cashed at the drawee bank National City Bank of New York.—Actual or compensatory damages cannot be presumed. GREGORIA T.—While no proof of pecuniary loss is necessary in order that moral damages may be awarded.ATTORNEYS-AT-LAW. Castillo for petitioner. petitioner. APPLICABILITY OF ARTICLE 2208 TO DEFENDANTS. essential that the claimant satisfactorily prove the existence of the factual basis of the damage (Art 2217) and its causal relation to defendant's acts. Hence. 1960] DEOGRACIAS F. Galang. 2. J. This is so because moral damages. 2219 also provides to those 56 that moral damages "analogous cases" enumerated therein.. MORAL DAMAGES DESIGNED TO COMPENSATE ACTUAL INJURY AND NOT TO IMPOSE PENALTY ON WRONGDOER.) MUST BE PETITION for review by certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals. MALONZO. CIVIL CODE. CLEARLY UNFOUNDED SUIT NOT AMONG GROUNDS FOR MORAL may DAMAGES.ID. the amount of indemnity being left to the discretion of the court (Art. the Code could not have intended Page . 109." and in view of the finding of the trial court and the Court of Appeals that petitioner's action against respondents is clearly unfounded.: On October 5. where neither the trial court nor the Court of Appeals has pointed out any specific facts which afford a basis for measuring whatever compensatory or actual damages had over and above award attorney's of fees and costs that respondents suffered. 2219. are in -the category of an award designed to compensate the claimant for actual injury suffered and not to impose a penalty on the wrongdoer (Algarra vs. J. JULY 27. Gregoria T.VOL. Manila. 284. vs. July 27.

000.00) that also included moral damages. 1947. paid off.00 to Galang. 1947 had nothing to do with said loan and was in payment of another loan which she extended to Malonzo just a few days before the check was issued. had remained unpaid.00 on August loan 27. Gaz. JULY 27. wherein the defendant is the plaintiff and the original plaintiff the defendant. 2199). and of attorney's fees. 2202.00 attorney's fees. Malonzo.Subsequently.968. e. plus in a fishing venture with to this Court. obtained 1955 for from the him by Gregoria thereof.C. par. As to attorney's fees. who cashed it on April 25. and above the attorney's other fees hand. the loan of P5.000.968.00 drawn against the Philippine National Bank. and P1. From this decision. Galang and drawn against the Philippine Trust Co.00 delivered in cash to Malonzo. T. CFI of Manila). The lower court also found that the complaint was clearly unfounded. and the costs award that of respondents Upon Galang on October 5. partly in cash (P1. Out of the proceeds of the check.000. The balance of PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Malonzo vs.. 1947. showing that this amount was not what respondents had proved to have suffered. since Article 2208. and found that the check for P3. In regard to other items of compensatory damages supposedly suffered by respondents (i. Malonzo sued the spouses payment interests and attorney's fees (C.. [2] 733). in view of the finding of the trial court and of the Court of Appeals that petitioner's action against respondents is clearly unfounded. 27303. and sentenced Malonzo to pay the Galang spouses under their counterclaim P500. the Rehabilitation Finance Corporation loaned to Francisco G.00 compensatory and 57 moral damages. Galang against the plaintiff". together with P32. but must be duly proved (Art.00 dated May 19. 1947. 47 Off. Malonzo appealed compensatory damages to respondents was merged by the trial court in a round sum (P500. Claiming Galang that the P5. The trial court refused to believe Malonzo's version that the loan in question had not yet been paid: held that the same had already been liquidated as claimed by the defendant spouses. (4). P10.. However. but Page . No. in addition to attorney's fees and costs that are also included in the filed concept a of actual or compensatory suit against damages): respondents assuming that they are recoverable in this case under the theory that petitioner's having clearly unfounded constitutes a tort against the latter that makes the former "liable for all damages which are the natural and probable consequences of the act or omission complained of" (Art. the award is correct and proper.00) and partly in a check for P3. made payable to Gregoria T.968. dismissed the same.00 was applied to the payment of the share and participation of Francisco Galang Malonzo. urging that there was no legal basis for the award to respondents of compensatory and moral damages. 1946. Galang P4.. on April 17. 84 considering that a counterclaim is a complaint by the defendant against original plaintiff Hidalgo Enterprises.000. case). of the New Civil Code authorizes the recovery of attorney's fees "in case of a clearly unfounded civil action or proceeding VOL. of a defendant the under counterclaim (Pongos vs. Neither the trial court nor the Court of Appeals has pointed out any specific facts which afford a basis for measuring whatever compensatory or actual damages had over suffered. On appeal to the Court of Appeals by Malonzo.00 extended by the former to Galang's wife on October 5. Malonzo alleged that he returned said amount of P4.000. 109. 1946. New Code). al. a This provision for applies attorney's equally fees (as in in favor this et. however. Galang a check in the sum of P14. be presumed. 1960 Malonzo vs. Galang endorsed the check to Deogracias F.00. according to Galang. Inc. 499. the judgment of the court a quo was affirmed in toto.968. Phil.968 delivered by Malonzo to Gregorio T. these damages can not. Galang on May 19..

are not corrective or exemplary damages. but we do not think the Code intended "a clearly unfounded civil action or proceedings" to be one of these analogous cases wherein moral damages may be recovered. the decision appealed from is modified in the sense that the award of compensatory and moral damages to respondents is eliminated. 2219. JJ. which they are intended to be. but is affirmed in all other respects. though incapable of pecuniary estimation. not think award Furthermore. 2219). 309 (par. Bautista Angelo. while no proof of pecuniary loss is necessary in order that moral damages may be awarded. It PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Malonzo vs. the special torts 58 Page referred to in Art. . Wherefore. thereby implying that all other quasi-delicts not resulting in physical injuries are excluded (Strebel vs. 2208). Besides. 16(1960)] compensatory damages to respondents should be allowed. are in the category of an award designed to compensate the claimant for actual injury suffered and not to impose a penalty on the VOL. 26. 2217) and its causal relation to defendant's acts. This is so because moral damages. which they are not. But the two enumerations differ in the case of a clearly unfounded suit. rather than a compensation for actual injury suffered. Sandejas.. with respect to moral damages. 2219 specifically mentions "quasi-delicts causing physical injuries". Art. 1960 Aquino vs. 2208 (par. 284). 2219. 21. Delizo wrongdoer (Algara vs. and Gutierrez David. 34 and 35 on the chapter on human relations (par. but is not included in the enumeration of Art. as it did in Art. Finally. 2219) and in Arts. The foregoing discussion makes it unnecessary to further dwell on the other points raised by the appeal. or else incorporated Art. defend For what the two we courts do found to be the a clearly of unfounded this reason. 4). 28. Such a conclusion would make of moral damages a penalty. 109. Art. 96 Phil. 9. 2208 by reference in Art. hence they made no definite finding as to what the supposed moral damages suffered consist of. 2219 also provides that moral damages may be awarded in "analogous cases" to those enumerated. 29. Padilla. 109 Phil. instance when moral damages may be allowed. Moral damages. the amount of indemnity being left to the discretion of the court (Art. 2219 in respect to moral damages. 2208. 30. Figueras. 2202). It is true that Art. The trial court and the Court of Appeals both seem to be of the opinion that the mere fact that respondent were sued without any legal foundation entitled them to an award of moral damages. which is expressly mentioned in Art.. the Code has chosen to enumerate the cases in which moral damages may be recovered (Art. 321). 10. Montemayor. of course. we are inclined to agree with petitioner that these damages are not recoverable herein. it is. Galang. as justifying for award of attorney's fees. excepting. 27 Phil. Art. nevertheless. A like enumeration is made in regard to the recovery of attorney's fees as an item of damage (Art. JULY 27. Concepción. concur.simply what the court believed to be reasonably due to them for having been made to suit. Barrera. No costs. Labrador. 2216). or it would have expressly mentioned it in Art. Galang will be observed that unlike compensatory or actual damages which are generally recoverable in tort cases as long as there is satisfactory proof thereof (Art. as an. in other words. 32. 27.. Decision modified. _______________ [Malonzo vs. 2219). essential that the claimant satisfactorily prove the existence of the factual basis of the damage (Art. notwithstanding the finding of the trial court and the Court of Appeals that his complaint against respondents was clearly unfounded or unreasonable.

In the facts set forth in the complaint no statement is made of any other basis for the indebtedness than the notarial instrument dated March 31. although usual in the business community. 2720. which in the course of the trial.000 pesos per annum.000 pesos which Lavin undertook to pay at the rate of 2.55)" provision of the law. 1906. No reference was made to it in the complaint with a view to distinguish one amount from the other. but the appellant in his brief says that "in this sum. Vicente Foz.—Among various demandable debts it is to be presumed that payment is to be applied to the one which is most onerous. result whether by mistake in making the liquidation. we included the stipulated interest at ten per cent per annum by capitalizing them. in addition to this source of to the trial court. and September 30. arising from accountscurrent which subsequent to March 31.768. Lavin Brothers APPEAL from a judgment of the Court of First Instance of Ilocos Sur. were continued between the plaintiff and and which Lavin. SUFFICIENCY OF. Civil Code. J. J. for appellees. (Article 1174. 1.076.50 pesos. vs. was referred to as "the old account" there is another.4). and in the judgment. was as shown by the correspondence evidence.—An unbroken line of decisions.: The complaint prays for a judgment for the sum of 33.DAMAGES. ARELLANO. of has some established doctrine breach judgment whether damages. plaintiff and appellant. JUNE 1. There has been neither liquidation nor allegations in support of it. for appellant. which this took claim place presented as documentary being designated as the "new account. PROOF. VICENTE LAVIN AND BROTHERS.] JUAN SANZ Y SANZ. 1898. must rest upon satisfactory proof of the existence in reality of the damages alleged to have been suffered. commencing from that date. 1895.) PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Sanz vs. defendants and appellees. * * *" But the appellant contends that. the amount demanded was reduced to eighteen thousand seventy-six pesos and fifty-five centavos (18. C. or to fix the respective balances due upon Page 59 .VOL. 6. 1906 Sanz vs. 1896. both arising before from and the a after the "that of promulgation every contract or of the for the Civil Code. by which Paulino Lavin. which was not lawful. 1885. Lavin Brothers and whatever may be the amount of this "new account" none of the parties have undertaken to fix or determine. 6. indebtedness. nor any concrete proof. "undertaking in case of breach of contract to indemnify the creditors for the damages which might be suffered by reason of failure in the payment." VOL. under whom the plaintiff claims the sum of 18. Mexican currency. December 7." (Judgments of the supreme court of Spain of the 13th and 26th of November. with interest at the rate of ten per cent per annum from the date of the breach of the contract. acknowledges the indebtedness as a result of an accounting with the late Vicente Milla. and thus it was attempted to collect interest upon interest. the ancestor. JUNE 1. 1906 Sanz vs.DEBTS. Lavin Brothers [No.) 2. consequently in the written argument presented (p. Serra. June 1. R. The facts are stated in the opinion of the court. 1885.

the amount being 2. as appears from his testimony at the trial. The conclusion laid down in the decision. directed registration of same Registry of Deeds be inference large corresponding 1886 had been made. viz. since 1890. (Art. that to a the statement by virtue part only of in of the the decision it is to payment 1886. Payments are not to be supposed or inferred but must be proved as facts. mortgage canceled.807. which rests entirely upon the mortgage deed of March 31. 1885.46 pesos. 1889.each. Although the demand has been reduced from 33. 3). Consequently the commentary contained in the decision as to the plaintifTs first letter is superfluous. according to article 1174 of the Civil Code.78 pesos. These payments Page 60 .000 pesos mentioned in that instrument had or had not been paid. according to the evidence presented by the defendants. more than 10. the. when the stipulated yearly payments ceased.44 pesos accepted by the plaintiff. His decision was that it had been more than paid. and such acquiescence is equivalent to an agreement and has the force and efficacy of a contract. 1172 of the Civil Code. whether the 18.000 pesos secured by a mortgage of real property. This sum should be deducted from the amount of 8. the court credits the application of payment made by -the defendant in his letter of October 4 of that year. The payment shown have been made is that which appears from the evidence introduced by the defendants.54 pesos. limited to the question presented by the complaint. Lavin Brothers he and dismissed the plaintiff's complaint in the and amount had that the been paid. but this correction is improper. was of necessity.000 pesos corresponding to the first yearly payment have been paid.200 pesos.679. so that at the end of that year the indebtedness was reduced to 8. makes a sum total greater than the entire amount demanded. viz.082. and to determining whether or not this therefore.917. 1. As regards the year 1888. is not acceptable. it is to be presumed that the payment is to be applied to the one which is most onerous. With respect to the annual payment due in 1887.) The payments shown to have been made during this year.000 pesos is due. nor for the purpose of determining what is the amount demanded as principle and what is the stipulated interest. it appears that the appellant in his brief still insists that the former sum included both accounts. which account.734.000 to 18. without any special statement made to the defendants as to the application of the same. in which the payments made were 2. The appellant in his brief says: "Since the 31st of December. and. The evidence presented by PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Sanz vs. as among various demandable debts.95 pesos.46 pesos above referred to. no more than $601 had been paid on account of the mortgage debt * * * " (p. in harmony with the answer of the defendants. defendants shows payment of 1. The finding is also correct as to the year 1889. He disregards entirely that part of the evidence which refers to the so-called "new account. as also should that of 2.46 pesos." and has rendered his decision solely with respect to the indebtedness of the 18. the finding of the payments made is correct. to the effect that the 2." evidenced public instrument 1885.35 pesos. which added to the amount acknowledged in a letter from Paulino Lavin to be due. The court below the debt in its decision by deals the solely with the socalled of March "old 31.917. As a rule.000 pesos. He says that on account of interest alone. All these payments make a total of 9.346. concerning contended The the as to same letter an of is true March as 10. The judgment. for against this application of payment no objection was made by Paulino Lavin. therefore.048. We consider that it was both reasonable and in conformity with good pleading for the judge to have limited his decision to the allegations of the complaint. amount to 1.

1891.. under the provisions of section 285 refers of the We Code can of be Civil Procedure..........500 pesos to Miguel Ortis..44 Making a total of .. who.... by a notarial document dated February 27. B............ sold it for the............... I said nothing to you........ 1894......made by Lavin from December 29.... Tía Doña Dominica...... This............... 5..... which the plaintiff accepts as applied to the payment of the mortgage deed (par.500 pesos...... Lavin Brothers plaintMf................... therefore...... 5.....500 pesos...... This amount we can not consider as a debt to be paid by the deducted from 18.. whose estate was the owner of this claim.. should be applied to the satisfaction of the mortgage debt of his father as being the more burdensome as compared with the indebtedness arising from his current accounts................... representative of Juan Sanz y Sanz (defendants' Exhibits A...737....... as therein stated...... and in that deed it is stated as a fact that this lady had "received money paid on account of the claim against Paulino Lavin........... settlement (plaintiff's Exhibits A...." 61 Page $9... to July 1........ 10 of the complaint)....683.. same amount to Servillo Robles...... the amount obtained from this sale............ 1893...... which contains the following paragraph: "While in your city I delivered to your aunt...00 (3)By Vicente Lavin .. B... but the sum of 5.. 2.... in the as is the to sole evidence the or to be the accepted.. the sum of 3.. B........ and D)......... 15)......54 ............ this sum must also be deducted from the balance due upon the indebtedness in 1889........ on August 14... 1906 Sanz vs..... 10)...... believing PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Sanz vs........ is not......... It appears that one of the mortgaged properties was sold by agreement with the plaintiff at public auction by the family counsel of the Lavin minors... 1894.... 1895 (Exhibits A...... to the (2)By minors of Lavin amount above stated. or in any way affect the explicit terms of that document. JUNE 1... $300 and subsequently ?100......... Consequently................. No... for the sum of 5. Sra...........920...000 pesos leaves a balance of only 79.. 17...500.. Lavin Brothers that she would inform you of this so that you might enter this payment which any admission statement effect of which would be to vitiate.. and accepted by the VOL................ discover nothing considered letters which appellant ....... modify....... We consider that the following payments have been proved by documentary evidence and by admissions of the parties: (1)By Paulino Lavin in the book * * *" Dominica Sanz was.. the widow of Vicente Milla.. as appears from the notarial document above cited..... for in the evidence presented by the plaintiff himself we find a letter from Vicente Lavin dated the 31st of December.....98 which pesos............ No...........02 defendants. according to the deed of ..

" It was. B. it is expressly provided "that the principle due shall not draw interest. and consequently the receipt 31. this by assignment can not be considered. although it was prior to the notarial instrument referred to. so frequently referred 'to. The first assignment refers to Exhibit document acknowledging Paulino Lavin of 2. it remains for us to examine the first two. the entire complaint rests. No. As to the claim. 9).Appellant's third. In another letter dated February 26. exception of what Vicente Lavin says in the letters cited. B. to pay the $2. that the debtor "should undertake. 17. ThLs.000 covered by the receipt which my father left as security for the debt. I should be obliged to you if you do not include same nor the interest. 1895: "I beg you not to forget to send me a statement of what we owe your aunt. A. therefore. In one of them dated June 29. 1883. there appear to have been demands made after the extension of the time requested by the debtors and accepted by the creditor. 1894. 1885. which which is is not the in the record. reference is made to it in two letters of Vicente Lavin presented as evidence by the plaintiff. we find the statements in the eleventh paragraph of the complaint to the effect that the plaintiff waived his right to collect interest from the heirs of Paulino Lavin from 1885 to March. 1894. 8). B. whether arising from a breach of contract or whether the result of some provision of the law. It must also be borne 111 mind that in the second clause of the statement of March 31. 1906 Sanz vs. fourth. Almond 62 admit the receipt (Exhibit No. The second assignment concerns the document designated as "Exhibits A." It appears. as you are aware. 6." 11. But however that may be. 11). that the interest stipulated was not intended as a compensatory interest or even as interest payable upon default. both before and after the promulgation of the Civil Code. of the although without in Upon determining addition this to point. as stated. Page . is without prejudice to its materiality in an independent suit. and although it is true there does appear to have been demands for payment on the part of the creditor. as we have already pointed out. Lavin Brothers It appears evident from numerous statements of the appellant that in the amount amount interest sued of from for the is included. in case of a breach of contract—that is. in accordance with your promise to me from the beginning * * *" (Exhibits A. No. agreed. prior to the execution of the notarial instrument of March 1885. upon which. and to let me know whether I can count upon the $2. must rest upon satisfactory proof of the existence in reality of the damages PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED UnitedStates vs. No. will not be included by you in the account or in the percentage. the the with exact legal the the principle. as you told me. B. has established the "doctrine constantly recognized and declared by the supreme court (of Spain) that every judgment for damages. This document was not admitted in evidence by the trial court. There does not appear to have been any mora er re. the unbroken line of the decisions. no connection between the two having been shown and the court committed no error in refusing to VOL. No. At all events this account is entirely foreign to the mortgage debt. as to which we make no decision in this case. by the payment of interest at the rate of 10 per cent per annum * * *. for. date stipulated interest complaint.000 pesos in cash on the 16th day of June. he says: "I hope that the $2. JUNE 1. your aunt said that I would not have to pay that * * " *" (Exhibits A.000 per annum—to indemnify the creditor for any damage which the delay in payment might cause him. but that this clause must be considered as constituting the penalty for the damages which might be suffered by th(3 creditor in case of default in payment. however. of course. and fifth assignments of error having thus been disposed of.000 which you told me you would not put in the account.

concur. the appellant to pay the costs of both instances. December 7. 1898. Torres.) Such proof has not been made in this case. Lavin Brothers. 1895. and Willard. ___________ [Sanz vs.alleged to have been suffered. and September 30." (Judgments of the supreme court of Spain of the 13th and 26th of November. 299(1906)] Page 63 . After the expiration of twenty days judgment will be entered in accordance with this decision. 6 Phil.. For the reasons stated we affirm the judgment appealed from in so far as it absolves the defendants from the complaint and order the cancellation of the mortgage and the inscription made in the Registry of Property in consequence thereof. Carson.. Mapa. Judgment affirmed. and ten days thereafter the cause will be returned to the trial court for execution. 1896. So ordered. JJ.

.89 was applied because the events that gave rise to the action took SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Receiver for North Negros Sugar Co. whether a relative or not of the victim. Ybanez place in 1937 and the action was commenced in 1940. Manila Railroad Co. Under the new Civil Code a brother and/or sister of the victim of culpa aquiliana cannot be awarded moral damages. political. It is particularly noticeable that Article 1902 stresses the passive subject of the obligation to pay damages caused by his fault or negligence. therefore.—It may well be said that culpa aquiliana. (Castro v. But a less provided 2206 moral VOL. and such action was commenced in 1940.. or penalty. and religious spiritual. Acro Taxicab Co. economic. vs. Corporacion de PP-Agustinos Recoletos.. 21. and by culpable act is meant any act which is blame-worthy when judged by accepted legal standards. Scope of liability for damages arising from act or manifestations mental or of his life: physical or material. vs.. et al. 55 Phil. Astudillo v. 82 Phil.—AYticle 1902 of the old Civil Code declares that any person who by an act or omission. 768). Same. 587). respondents. characterized by fault or negligence. may recover damages from the person responsible therefor. Civil law. 821. 427).. Surro. L-22183. 59 Phil. vs. YBAÑEZ. Inc. for culpa aquiliana Civil Civil Code—which descendants provides and that only the may omission characterized by fault or negligence. or quasi delict. ET AL. To whom moral damages may be granted. Same. new Civil Code). Inc. AUGUST 30. in principle. 1968 Receiver for North Negros Sugar Co. The article the does not who limit may or specify the active thus subjects. Old Civil Code. 359.VOL. Case at bar. August 30.. 38 Phil. Ybanez No. 1968. anybody who suffers any damage from culpa aquiliana. 93 Phil. This Court had granted moral damages not only to the person who himself was injured (Lilius v. AUGUST 30.. Where the Civil Code of 18. that Article spouse. INC. may comprehending suffer in as it and does all all the the new illegitimate Code... have also been awarded damages for the death of their children (Manzanares v. financial. The idea thus expressed is undoubtedly broad enough to include any rational conception of liability for the tortious acts likely to be developed in any society (Daywalt v. vs. 2253. 39 Phil. et al. moral or psychological. Ybanez damages for mental anguish by reason of the death of the deceased of legitimate for in the and new severe sanction. social. THE RECEIVER FOR NORTH NEGROS SUGAR COMPANY. Page damages human being any petitioner herein. 1968 Receiver for North Negrtis Sugar Co. 473). Art. demand ascendants 64 caused by quasi-delict—should be applied in the case at bar. Damages. Article 1902 of old Civil Code construed. Hence. even natural.. causes damage to another shall be liable for the damage done. is punished both by the old Civil Code—the previous legislation—and by the new Civil is Code. petitioner. Parents.—Where the acts and events that gave rise to the action for moral damages and attorney's fee took place in 1937. the provisions of the Civil Code of 1889 shall apply (Cf. but also to the legitimate children and heirs of the deceased (Alcantara v. Moreta. Manila Electric Co. A person is liable for damage done to another by any culpable act. warranting inference that. It follows. Inc. much the less the relation that must exist between the victim of the culpa aquiliana and person recover damages. who claims moral damages for the death of his brother . PEDRO V. 381). The word "damage" that a in said article.. 24.

a civil action based on culpa aquiliana was instituted. 1940.— The prosecution reck- for double homicide and serious physical injuries through _____________ 1 Properly the only respondent is Pedro V. was in on V. on Supreme Court's ruling before the new Civil Code was to the effect that attorney's fees are not a proper element of damages (Tan Ti v. Loreto A petition for review of the decision of the Court of Appeal. Company. 500). Ybanez. Appeal was taken by the plaintiffs to the Court of Appeals. North Negros Company. May 25. At the pre-trial. and should not have been awarded. by the Court of Appeals (Heirs of Gervacio Gonzales v. the its Ybafiez No. where said Cesar and Inc. Attorney's fees are not a proper element of damages." Plaintiffs-appellants respondents in Pedro the V. Gustilo and respectively. Ybdfiez and Rosario the V. on August 5. considered the case submitted. Doctors Pharmaceuticals. Pedro V. by versus entitled her legal "Pedro V. and Loreto Perez. 26 Phil. instant petition. Primitivo Loreto Perez were tried together and acquitted of the crime charged. 8367. evening way was of riding by August Bacolod and the 31. Selph & Carmscoso for petitioner. and immediate heirs of Cesar V. as well as the decision in and the transcript of the stenographic notes taken during the trial of. and their employer. Primitivo Gustilo. Ybanez. Inc. 1940. plaintiffs-appellants. driver of the car. 5.. The trial court. Ybanez less imprudence was instituted against Gil Dominguez. Ybanez. Ybanez. Defendants filed a motion for summary judgment. No. docketed as Civil Case No. Same. v. Ibañez in his own behalf as respondent. Pedro Rosario represented guardian. . 90 Phil. the car train owned Sugar railroad Criminal Page intersection at Hacienda Santa Teresa.. Inc.1 are brother respectively. V. Thereafter. Josc Ma. Occidental Negros.. Ross. the criminal case. Manapla. and rendered a decision dismissing the case. 1956). The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. operator and brakeman. Inc. Sugar Perez. in CA-G. J. seeking to recover damages for the death of the deceased. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Receiver for North Negros Sugar Co. vs. Borden Co. Alegarbes. praying for the dismissal of the civil case. is not entitled to. defendants interposed as special defense the previous acquittal of defendants Primitivo Gustilo and Loreto Perez in the criminal case. moral damages. 566. Ybafiez who was one of two persons who died as a result of the collision between the car. City being North 1937 to driven Negros in the by Gil 65 Dominguez.. and to Primitivo institute Gustilo and civil Loreto for Perez. and prayed for the dismissal of the complaint. without any further hearing. 1963. rendered on October and V. North Negros Sugar Company. Gil Dominguez was also acquitted in a separate trial. in the Court of First Instance of Negros Occidental by Pedro V. In their answer. defendants-appellees. Ybanez because Rosario V. Inc. while from Cadiz. but the appeal was certified to this Court on the ground that the appeal merely involved questions of law.: May 15. 28608-R. ZALDIVAR. PETITION for review of a decision of the Court of Appeals.. 14. Lopez Vito for other respondents. The offended parties reserved their right separate actions damages. Ybanez. Ybaiiez against Primitivo Gustilo. Alvear. Ybanez died leaving as her only heir her brother Pedro V.R. and named sister. Ybanez caused by quasidelict. of the locomotive. L-7821.Cesar V. the parties agreed to reproduce in the civil case all the evidence submitted in the criminal case. Ybanez and Rosario V.

the case was certified. In its brief. Ybafiez.00 "as moral damages for the mental anguish suffered by the heir". Claudio R. "in ordering petitioner to pay P5. 1960. The Court of Appeals. L-6790.00 for funeral expenses. liable for the death of Cesar V. In support of the first assignment of error. 28608-R. vs. Appeal was taken by plaintiff Pedro V. AUGUST 30. No. case reversed for the In this appeal. and the amount involved was less than P200.000."' 1. plaintiff Rosario V. Ybanez. Respondent Pedro V..00 "for attorney's fees. Hence this petition for review. Ybañcz After having received additional evidence. 1963. legitimate and illegitimate descendants and ascendants of the deceased may demand moral damages for mental anguish by reason of the death of the deceased. Ybanez died. the 1955. P5. Ybanez. "in awarding attorney's fees in the sum of P5. No. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Receiver for North Negros Sugar Co. because the accident that caused the death happened in decision lower further proceedings.. and his sister. docketed as G. Ybanez for lost damages earnings consisting of the of P9.R. was On the other and hand. are not among those entitled to moral damages. was the North Negros Sugar by its dissolved accordingly substituted receiver Dr.000. A motion for reconsideration filed by defendant North Negros Sugar Company. co-plaintiff Pedro V. P6. the award to them of moral damages was not authorized by law. only the spouse. of in the G. 66 that the awards of moral damages and attorney's fees were not warranted under the law and the circumstances attending the litigation. being his brother. to the Court of Appeals and docketed in the latter court as Case No. Inc. dismissing the case anew.00 as compensatory for death damages deceased. L-14849. leaving as her only heir. petitioner cites paragraph 3 of Article 2206 of the new Civil Code.000. _____________ 2 Words in quotation marks are as quoted from the decision of the Court of Appeals.000 'as moral damages for mental anguish suffered' by plaintiffs who were brother and sister of the deceased". During the pendency of the case in the lower court. 3 As quoted from the assignment of errors. Inc. and 2.R. on July 23. petitioner limits itself to questioning the correctness of the decision of the Court of Appeals in so far as it awards moral damages and attorney's fees. reversed the judgment of the lower court and held the North Negros Sugar Company. the Inc. considering the years and extensive work—the protracted litigation had taken. the Court of First Instance of Negros Occidental rendered judgment. P5. Rosario V. Petitioner urges that in the instant case the heirs of the deceased Cesar V. on August 25. Pedro V.600. court and on March remanded 28. Loreto Perez. also died in the interim and the case against him was dismissed. One of the defendants. Luzurriaga. ordering it to pay plaintiff-appellant Pedro V.This Court. contends that the law applicable is in the old Civil Code. Ybafiez. vs.and costs. case. VOL. Inc. was denied. 1968 Receiver for North Negros Sugar Co. Pl. and not Article 2206 of the new Civil Code. on the contrary. petitioner contends that the Court of Appeals erred: 1. 1958. Ybanez (now deceased). but because questions of fact were involved. Page .000.000. Ybanez to this Court. Ybañez which provides that in case of death caused by a crime or quasi-delict. on October 14. among others. upon the grounds. or petition for review. Ybanez.". consequently.. to continue Company. Inc.000 to the heirs of the deceased.00 indemnity. 24.

or on the occasion of the performance of their duties. et al. was taken into consideration in determining who would be paid the indemnity for damages. provides: "The Civil Code of 1889 and other previous laws shall govern rights originating. 587. but also for those of persons for whom another is responsible. 768 (1934). This is so. as we may . Manila Railroad Co. 1106 and 1107 of the old Civil Code. and Manzanares vs. and as decisions Castro Lilius Acro Manila Railroad. and the case was filed in 1940. To resolve the issue. wherein the fact of heirship. characterized by fault or negligence. alt vs. 1903. 82 Phil. under the transitional provisions of the new Civil Code.. 39 Phil." The pertinent provisions of the old Civil Code are Articles 1902 and 1903. Ybañez In reply. the damages must be paid— taking into consideration the principles of the general law on damages.. 1903. from acts done or events which took place under their regime. Said respondent maintains that the ruled award by of this vs. Astudillo vs. even though this Code may regulate them in a different manner. or are warranted. moral Court damages in the and is authorized in vs. Corporacion de PP Agustinos Recoletos. in none of the cases cited. person who by an act or omission.6 show at the later part of this opinion. under said laws. however. should be paid to the injured person. _____________ VOL. 12 Lilius vs. 1968 Receiver for North Negros Sugar Co. of the law on succession. et al. 381. or may not recognize them x x x. 11 Castro vs. particularly vs. 1103. Inc.. House. Any person who by act or omission causes damage to damages. The first article provides: "Art. done. provides: "Art. The obligation imposed by the next preceding article is 1902. but if the injured person died as a consequence of the culpable act and the victim left no descendants or ascendants. and the action was commenced in 1940. respondent urges..7. 67 Page We believe that the old Civil Code is the law applicable to the case at bar. 1104.4 Moral Gutierrez Gutierrez. not only for personal acts and omissions. Manila Electric Co. under Articles 1902." This Court said: "Article 1902 of the Civil Code declares that any respondent damages awarded new Civil Code took effect. because the acts and events that gave rise to the instant action took place in 1937. 59 Phil. 24. Acro Taxicab Co. and the fact that under the old Civil Code no specific persons are indicated to be the only ones entitled to recover moral damages—to the heirs or next of kin of the victim." and the second article in part. causes damage to another shall be liable for the damage done x x x a person is liable for damage done to another by any culpable act. the children or the parents. we have to determine what law is applicable— whether the provisions of the old Civil Code or of the new Civil Code. were moral damages awarded to a brother or sister of the deceased.. Respondent further cites the rulings of this Court in the cases of Bernal vs. but only to either the victim himself.8.5 Taxicab Inc. as viewed from the general principle of succession of the deceased victim.1937. the surviving spouses. vs. 359. Moreta9. Article 2253 of the new Civil Code. subject to such modifications as are suggested. AUGUST 30. petitioner show that points moral out that although were the cases even cited before by the another by his fault or negligence shall be liable for the damage so enforcible. "Owners or directors of an establishment or business are equally liable for any damages caused by their employees while engaged in the branch of the service in which employed.

1945. Surro and Manila Electric Co. 1968 Receiver for North Negros Sugar Co. mental brothers and sisters and even to his godchildren. when said laws were in force. Tratado de Derecho Civil. is not entitled to. 24. 24. legitimate and illegitimate descendants and ascendants may demand moral damages for mental anguish by reason of the death of the deceased caused by quasi-delict—should be applied in the instant case. VOL. petitioner herein. brothers and sisters. as we have pointed out. Moreta. and godchildren. may have _____________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Reccivcr for North Ncyros S-uyur Co. 14 Manzanares v. who claims moral damages for the death of his brother Cesar V. is so applied by the courts of France as to hold a person guilty of culpa aquiliana liable for moral damages to the person injured. And so. a . Article 2257 of the new Civil Code—one of the transitional provisions— provides as follows: "Art. and even to godchildren.) It may well be said that culpa aquiliana. in France. Inc. for culpa aquiliana is provided for in the new Civil Code. is punished both by the old Civil Code—the previous legislation—and by the new Civil Code. or quasi delict. 55 Phil. or to his spouse. 427. than under the old Civil Code. and should not have been awarded. therefore. Ybanez "Cada uno es responsable del daño que ha causado no solamente por su 50) On the basis of the above-quoted article. then the person guilty of culpa aquiliana under our old Civil Code would be liable for moral damages under our to the old person injured. are not applicable to those who. Ybailez caused by quasi-delict. 821. that Article 2206 of the new Civil Cocle—which provides that only. It follows. 38 Phil. Hence.the spouse. under the new Civil Code. the or to his for spouse. Ybanez executed the act or incurred in the omission forbidden or condemned by this Code." (Italics supplied. This would mean that Civil Code liability damages anguish due to culpa aquiliana was to more persons than what our new hecho. But.13 Alcantara vs. the less severe sanction shall be (applied.15 We thus see that a provision in the Civil Code of France which is substantially similar to the provision of the Civil Code of Spain. p.. a less severe sanction. sino también por su negligencia o por su imprudencia. 2257." (Ripert and Boulanger. 2nd part. parents.. less severe sanction—at least as regards the persons entitled to moral damages—is provided for.. children. vs. Manila Electric Co. or penalty. moral children. wherein the death occurred on Nov. moral damages for mental anguish (sentimientos afectivos) have been awarded not only to parents. Inc. by the Court of Appeals. Provisions of this Code which attach a civil sanction or penalty or a deprivation of rights to acts or omissions which were not penalized by the f ormer laws. Vol. V. natural grandparents. AUGUST 30. of the victim of culpa aquiliana but also to brothers and sisters.. moral damages. children and spouse. relating to culpa aquiliana. vs. Astudillo v. for parents. "If the fault is also punished by the previous legislation.16 68 Page Civil Code now provides in its Article 2206 which limits the liability for moral damages to the spouse and legitimate and illegitimate descendants and ascendants of the deceased. 93 Phil. If the provision of our old Civil Code—which was itself the Civil Code of Spain of 1889—relating to culpa aquiliana were to be applied as it had been applied in France. 473.

This Court. as such. or before the effectivity of the new Civil Code. Ybanez of Appeals on Article 2208 (11) and Article 2253 of the new Civil of Article 2208 of the Civil Code. vs. 1968 Receiver for North Negros Sugar Co. But petitioner urges might he recovered. 491.000 to respondents as attorney's fees is untenable. that the and not issue is whether or not attorney's the amount of attorney's fees in fees the determination of which the long years of litigation given as reason by the Court of Appeals would be pertinent. petitioner argues that the Court of Appeals had no special reason for awarding attorney's fees because the petitioner had not acted in gross and evident bad faith in resisting respondent's claims for damages. Each party to the action must pay his own lawyer x x x. Inc. Respondent. that the loss of the amount so paid wrong was as to easily within the such causal of relations the to the in defendant's warrant assessment damages compensation for it (Sears vs. argues that the Court of Appeals gave as reason for the award of attorney's fees: "considering the years and extensive work—the protracted litigation had taken. 24. In the case of George Edward Koster Inc. just and demandable" claims as contemplated under paragraph (5) of Article 2208 of the new Civil Code. considering that the two employees." Respondent also maintains that the award must have been based by the Court _____________ VOL. Respondent's argument that the award of attorney's fees was justified under Article 2208 (11) of the new Civil Code is untenable.. The Court will not ordinarily allow counsel fees to the successful party. and the civil case for damages was dismissed by the trial court. 181). 102 N. Couri of Industnal Relations counsel to swell the fees to undue proportions. E. the same having been instituted before the effectivity of the said Code. in the case of Bureau of Lands vs. 1940. ed. for whose alleged negligent acts herein petitioner is made to answer. Although courts have.18 this Court said: "At common law. cannot be said to have been caused by bad faith. because the instant case was filed on May 15. Page 69 . To compel the defeated would party throw to pay the the fees of counsel temptation for to his the successful opponent wide door of Code." The refusal of herein petitioner to pay the damages asked. Counsel fees paid in prior action have been allowed x x x (where) the conduct of the party against whom they were allowed.). Our rulings before the New Civil Code took effect (the present case having arisen before) have been as follows: 'lt is not sound public policy to place a penalty on the right to litigate. Zulueta.17 held: "That portion of the decision which awards P10.. taxed against his opponent (14 L. so directly and certainly caused the expenditure for this purpose. and to apportion them arbitrarily between those pertaining properly to one branch of the case from the other. were acquitted in the criminal case. et al. the successful party usually has no right to have the fees of his attorney. vs. Samia. Inhabitants of Nahant. AUGUST 30.2.' said provision is inapplicable to the present case. although the case was finally decided against it. Regarding the second error assigned. authority to award attorney's fees whenever it may be 'just and equitable. and the claims of respondent herein could not be characterized as "plainly valid. under paragraph (11) opposing party and his _____________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Coronel vs. on the other hand.

[Receiver for North Negros Sugar Co. Castro..000. other than those fixed in the rules as costs.—See the annotation on "Attorney's Fees as Damages" under that Firestonc Tire. May 12. C. the decision of the Court of Appeals sought to be reviewed should be. Reyes. Makalintal. No pronouncement as to costs.' (Jesswani vs. Inc. Sanchez. modified by eliminating therefrom the award of P5. & Rubber Company of the Philippines vs. Dizon. Masaram Dialdas. 19 1966. L-23729.B. G. Alvear. Ybanez. No. Incs Chaves & Co. The Borden Go. May 16.' (Tan Ti vs. L-4651. Court of Appeals. 566.. 90 Phil. vs.R. Oct."This Court has already placed itself on record as favoring the view taken by those courts which hold that attorney's fees are not a proper element of damages. 500)." WHEREFORE. Angeles and Fernando.. It is so ordered. 360-371. 'x x x Counsel fees. and entitled "When the defendant is entitled to attorney's fees" under Rizal Surety & Insurance Company vs. Ltd. 24 SCRA 979(1968)] Page 70 . Inc.00 for moral damages for mental anguish suffered by the heir. Concepcion. Note. 18 SCRA 356..L. as it is hereby... 1952). concur.00 for attorney's fees. vs. JJ. are not an element of recoverable damages. and the award of F5. 26 Phil. 1967. Doctors Pharmaceuticals. Decision modified. 20 SCRA 61. J.000..J. 68-69. L-17106.

The said second contract was was not not immediately until carried the into effect of for the PARTY. D. 13505.for failure to deliver land which he has contracted to deliver is the VOL. . Other damages. 3. DAMAGES FOR BREACH. This new contract was executed in the form of a deed of conveyance and bears date of August 16. an unmarried woman. .: In the year 1902. however. Teodorica Endencia. A decree recognizing the right .. knowledge of the special conditions which render such damages possible will not make them recoverable. Daywalt. if the damages are in the legal sense remote or speculative. plaintiff and appellant. FEBRUARY 4. known as special damages. The stipulated price was fixed at P4. J..ID. Special damages of this character cannot be recovered unless made the subject of special stipulation. 1. Accordingly. Crossfield & O'Brien for appellee.a tract of land situated in the barrio of Mangarin. DAYWALT.CONTRACTS. are recoverable where it appears that the particular conditions which made such damages a probable consequence of the breach were known to the delinquent party at the time the contract was made. primarily.of Teodorica as owner was entered in said court in August 1906. executed a contract whereby she obligated herself to convey to Geo. reason that the Torrens certificate was not yet obtainable and in fact certificate issued period performance contemplated in the contract had expired. if any. LIABILITY OF THIRD value of the use and occupation of the land for the time during which it is wrongfully withheld. LA CORPORACIÓN DE LOS PADRES AGUSTINOS RECOLETOS ET AL. Agustinos Recoletos. met immediately upon the entering of this decree and made a new contract with a view to carrying their original agreement into effect. DAMAGES FOR BREACH OF CONTRACT FOR SALE OF LAND. 1919. resident in the Province of Mindoro.ID. W. Corporación de PP.] GEO.—The damages recoverable upon breach of contract are. Page . now San Jose. in said province. Corporación de PP. municipality of Bulalacao. MEASURE OF DAMAGES FOR BREACH OF CONTRACT. . It was agreed that a deed should be executed as soon as the title to the land should be perf ected by proceedings in the Court of Land Registration and a Torrens certificate should be procured therefor in the name of Teodorica Endencia. ID. C. The parties. upon October 3.. The facts are stated in the opinion of the court. February 4. Ostrand. APPEAL from a judgment of the Court of First Instance of Manila. [No. Cohn and Thos. 1906. he cannot become more extensively liable in damages for the nonperformance of the contract than the party in whose behalf he intermeddles.000. C. This proposition must be understood with the qualification that. ID.—The damages ordinarily recoverable against a vendor 71 PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Daywalt vs. Aitken for appellant. defendants and appellees. 39. W. Agustinos Recoletos.—Whatever may be the character of the liability. 2. . but the Torrens certificate was not issued until later. STREET. vs. natural and in a sense the necessary damage resulting from the breach. Daywalt vs. ID. J. the ordinary. which a stranger to a contract may incur by advising or assisting one of the parties to evade performance. and the area of the land enclosed in the boundaries defined in the contract was stated to be 452 hectares and a fraction. 1919.

and was given. La Corporación de los Padres Recoletos. Daywalt. Agustinos Recoletos. known as the San Jose Estate. The Torrens certificate was in time issued to Teodorica Endencia. 2. father Isidoro Sanz. This attitude of hers led to litigation in which Daywalt finally succeeded. but in the course of the proceedings relative to the registration of the land. as well as other members of the defendant corporation. where it was to be delivered to the plaintiff upon payment of a balance of P3. Corporación de PP. as we have already seen. finally fixed the rights of the parties to the property in 1909 to in in the the question. himself a member of the order. upon appeal to the Supreme Court. receiving the Torrens title to the land in question. many Recoletos necessary to bring the cattle off of that property. This decree appears to have become finally effective in the early part of the year 1914. and chief taken Manila where it remained in the custody and under the control of P. Labarga official the defendant was made corporation. 1908. When of the defendant some corporation head sold the San to Jose the Estate. and. in the first half 1909.1908.100. and it certificate she was of then the was finally it for to issued of Teodorica delivered safekeeping Juan corporation. on the island of Mindoro. favor defendant procurador the delivery When the Torrens Endencia. matters of them. important business accustomed to seek.substituted successively for it. and Teodorica Endencia was ordered to convey the entire tract of land to Daywalt pursuant to the contract of October 3. charged with the management of these farms. estate it of was the 72 immediately adjacent to the land which Teoderica Endencia had sold to Geo. it was f ound by official survey that the area of the tract inclosed in the boundaries stated in the contract was about 1. which contract was declared to be in full force and effect. asserting that she never intended to sell so large an amount of land and that she had been misinformed as to its area. The same corporation was at this time W. Father Sanz was fully aware of the existence of the contract of 1902 by which Teodorica Endencia agreed to sell her land to the plaintiff as well as of the later important developments connected with the history of that contract and the contract .248 hectares instead of 452 hectares as stated in the contract. and in particular Father Sanz. with its domicile in the city of Manila. Their representative. until thereof to plaintiff compulsory by reason of the decree of the Supreme Court in 1914. to deliver the same to the Hongkong and Shanghai Bank in Manila. to be forwarded to the Crocker National Bank in San Francisco. Father Sanz had long been well acquainted with Teodorica Endencia and exerted over her an influence and ascendency due to his religious character as well as to the personal to be and a friendship woman all upon which of the little existed personal between force. In view of this development Teodorica Endencia became reluctant to transfer the whole tract to the purchaser. superseding the old. is a religious corporation. by which Teodorica Endencia agreed. in obtaining a decree for specific performance. knew of the existence of the contract of October 3. Said corporation was formerly the owner of a large tract of land. Corporación de PP. the parties entered into still another agreement. which.368 were removed corporation immediately adjacent to the property which the plaintiff had Page . also the owner and for of another years estate the on the same Fathers island had maintained large herds of cattle on the farms referred to.1 The defendant. the advice of Father Sanz and other members of his order with whom she came in contact. upon Daywalt vs. which was sold to the Government of the Philippine Islands in the year 1909. was ____________ PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Daywalt vs. Agustinos Recoletos. easily Teodorica subject to was appears influence. 1908.

800 annually. Corporación de PP. or P4. the true owner. the amount claimed in the complaint. the rate of forty centavos per head monthly seems too high. inasmuch as the final decree of this court in the action for specific performance is conclusive against her right. Agustinos Recoletos. Under the first cause stated in the complaint in the present action the plaintiff P24. court had already found that the defendant was liable for these damages from June. the plaintiff contends that the possession of said property Father Sanz entered into an arrangement with her whereby large numbers of cattle belonging to the def endant corporation were pastured upon said land during a period extending from June 1. 1. The plaintiff appealed and has assigned error to this part of the judgment of the court below. is whether the damages allowed under this head should be increased.000 a year. Corporación de PP. of the seeks as The to recover for from the the use to defendant and corporation of the the the sum land of in damages trial court occupation defendant corporation maintained at least one thousand head of cattle on the land and that the pasturage was of the value of forty centavos per head monthly. or a period of four years and eleven months.no reason to suppose that the land was worth more for grazing purposes during the period -from 1909 to 1913. it can not be cattle considering locality. the sum of P2. and roughly adopted the period of four years as the time for which compensation at that rate should be made. As the. VOL." From this it will be seen that the trial court estimated the rental value of the land for grazing purposes at 50 centavos per hectare per annum. plus the 73 Page permitted that the corporation should escape liability in this action by proving payment of rent to a person other than.000.000. Daywalt vs. is not now in question. The evidence shows that after having recovered possession of the land the plaintiff rented it to the defendant corporation for fifty centavos per hectare annually. 1919. FEBRUARY 4. for the whole tract. stated. 39.497. the propriety of allowing damages f or the use and occupation of the land to the extent of P2. in connection with this branch of the case. It may be mentioned in this connection that the Lontok tract adjoining taxes. for one the question by reason of the pasturing of cattle thereon during the period came the conclusion that defendant corporation was liable for damages by reason of the use and occupation premises in the manner stated. and this appears to be a reasonable rent. and fixed the amount to be recovered at P2. 1914. It is rather improbable that 1. the mount awarded. 1909. Upon this basis the plaintiff is entitled to damages in. tares of wild Mindoro thousand head of land would during the furnish entire sufficient pasturage year. to May 1. Agustinos Recoletos. There is . and the only thing here to be considered.purchased from Teodorica Endencia. and as the defendant corporation had notice of the rights of the plaintiff under his contract of purchase.248 hecPHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Daywalt vs. and is under no obligation to reimburse the defendants for the land taxes paid by either f them during the the land period in the land and was occupied by the three defendant thousand corporation. insisting that damages should have been awarded in a much larger sum and at least to the full extent of P24. 1914. As Teodorica still retained With ref erence to the rate at which compensation should be estimated the trial court came to the following conclusion: "As to the rate of the compensation. to May 1.497. As the def endant did not appeal. the tenant to pay the taxes on the land. . and. question containing over hectares appears to have been leased for only P1. than it was at the later period. The court can not accept this view.497. The trial court rightly ignored the fact that the defendant corporation had paid Teodorica Endencia f or use and occupation of the same land during the period in question at the rate of P425 per annum. 1909.

even accepting the rule upon which the damages were assessed. it appears. Considerations of this character probably led the trial court to adopt four years as roughly being the period during which compensation should be allowed. for which reason it became necessary to allow them to go over to pasture on the land in question. unlawfully induced Teodorica Endencia to refrain 74 from the performance of her contract f or the sale of the land in question and to withhold delivery to the plaintiff of the Torrens title. Corporación de PP. Teodorica also was in the end prevailed upon to stand out against the perf ormance of her contract with the plaintiff with the result that the plaintiff was kept out of possession until the Wakefield project for the establishment of a large sugar growing and milling enterprise fell through. Corporación de PP. 39. incurred as a result of a combination of circumstances of the following nature: In 1911. 1919. for the sale and disposal of said lands to a sugar growing and milling enterprise. Agustinos Recoletos. must inevitably have proved a great success. delivery compliance agreement Teodorica Endencia damages assessed are sufficient to compensate the plaintiff for the use and occupation of the land during the whole time it was used. FEBRUARY 4. maliciously and without reasonable cause. the damages for f our years and eleven months would be P3. with we see no to sufficient the reason. if carried into effect. Daywalt to get possession of the land and the Torrens certificate of title. the with the plaintiff title returned for to the in Philippine Islands. as it is manifest that at the rate of 50 centavos per hectare per annum. and the large damages laid in the complaint were. the plaintiff. communicated his arrangement to the defendant. according to the proof submitted by the plaintiff. B. as the owner of the land which he had bought from Teodorica Endencia entered into a contract (Exhibit C) with S.090. on the ground that said corporation. for its own selfish purposes. and further. land by the defendant was not continuous throughout the year but was confined mostly to the season when the f orage obtainable on the land of the defendant corporation was not sufficient to maintain its cattle. Daywalt vs. who refused to deliver the document. The determination of the issue presented in this second cause of action requires a consideration of two points. But whether this was advertently done or not. but the Torrens title was then in the possession of Padre Juan Labarga in Manila. for substituting our guess for the estimate made by the trial court. we feel justified in saying that the project above referred to. we are of the opinion that the defense to the action of specific performance which was finally decided in favor of the plaintiff in this court. In the second cause of action stated in the complaint the plaintiff seeks to recover f rom the def endant corporation the sum of P500. Notwithstanding this circumstance. as damages. and it is not clear that the whole of the land was used f or pasturage at any time. In the light of what has happened in recent years in the sugar industry. in the cattle uncertainty of the record reference number of the seems to have yielded her consent to the consummation of her contract. There is evidence in the record strongly tending to show that the wrongful use of the VOL. Wakefield. made In order to accomplish to this end. Agustinos Recoletos. maintained her in her Page .000. of San Francisco. and repeated with efforts said secure registered Wakefield.there seems some ground for the contention made in the appellant's first assignment of error that the court's computation was erroneous. the successful launching of which depended on the ability of PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Daywalt vs. The cause of action here stated is based on a liability derived from the wrongful interference of the defendant in the performance of the contract between the plaintiff and Teodorica Endencia. The first is whether a person who is not a party to a contract for the sale of land makes himself grazed and the period when the land was used.

liable for damages ,to the vendee, beyond the value of the use and occupation, by colluding with the vendor and maintaining him in the effort to resist an action for specific performance. The second is whether the damages which the plaintiff seeks to recover under this head are too remote and speculative to be the subject of recovery. As preliminary to a deem it well consideration of the first of these questions, we that the members of the

influence and promptings of members of the defendant corporation. But we do not credit the idea that they were in any degree influenced to the giving of such advice by the desire to secure to themselves the paltry privilege of grazing their cattle upon the land in question to the prejudice of the just rights of the plaintiff. The attorney for the plaintiff maintains that, by interfering in the

to dispose of the contention

performance of the contract in question and obstructing the plaintiff in his efforts to secure the certificate of title to the land, the defendant corporation made itself a co-participant with Teodorica Endencia in the breach of said contract; and inasmuch as father Juan Labarga, at the time of said unlawful intervention between the contracting parties, was fully aware of the existence of the contract (Exhibit C) which the plaintiff had made with PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. S. B. Wakefield, is of San Francisco, it is insisted that the defendant of the

defendant corporation, in advising and prompting Teodorica Endencia not to comply with the contract of sale, were actuated by improper and malicious motives. The trial court found that this contention was not sustained, observing that while it was true that the circumstances pointed to an entire sympathy on the part VOL. 39, FEBRUARY 4, 1919. Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. of the defendant corporation with the efforts of Teodorica Endencia to defeat the plaintiff's claim to the land, the fact that its officials may have advised her not to carry the contract such into effect would not constitute actionable interference with contract. It may be added

corporation

liable

for the loss

consequent upon

the failure

project outlined in said contract. In this connection reliance is placed by the plaintiff upon certain

that when one considers the hardship that the ultimate performance of that contract entailed on the vendor, and the doubt in which the issue was involved—to the extent that the decision of the Court of the First Instance was unfavorable to the plaintiff and the Supreme Court itself was divided—the attitude of the defendant corporation, as exhibited in the conduct of its procurador, Juan Labarga, and other members of the order of the Recollect Fathers, is not difficult to understand. To our mind a fair conclusion on this feature of the case is that father Juan Labarga and his associates believed in good faith that the contract could not be enf orced and that Teodorica would be wronged if it should be carried into effect. Any advice or assistance which they may have given was, therefore, prompted by no mean or improper motive. It is not, in our opinion, to be denied that Teodorica would have surrendered the documents of title and given possession of the land but for the

American and English decisions in which it is held that a person who is a stranger to a contract may, by an unjustifiable interference in the performance thereof, render himself liable f or the damages consequent upon non-performance. It is said that the doctrine of these cases was recognized by this court in Gilchrist vs. Cuddy (29 Phil. Rep., 542); and we have been earnestly pressed to extend the rule there enunciated to the situation here presented. Somewhat more than half a century ago the English Court of the Queen's Bench saw its way clear to permit an action for damages to be maintained against a stranger to a contract wrongfully interfering in its performance. The leading case on this subject is Lumley vs. Gye ([1853], 2 El. & Bl., 216). It there appeared that the plaintiff, as manager of a theatre, had entered into a contract with Miss

Page

75

Johanna Wagner, an knowing of the

opera singer, whereby of this contract,

she bound and, as

herself for a the declaration

the employer is immaterial. Malice in the sense of ill-will or spite is not essential. Upon the question as to what constitutes legal justification, a good

period to sing in the plaintiff's theatre and nowhere else. The defendant, existence alleged, "maliciously intending to injure the plaintiff," enticed and procured Miss Wagner to leave the plaintiff's employment. It was held that the plaintiff was entitled to recover damages. The right which was here recognized had its origin in a rule, long familiar to the courts of the common law, to the effect that any person who entices a servant from his employment is liable in damages to the master. The master's interest in the service to break rendered up a by his employee is here considered as a distinct subject of juridical right. It being thus accepted that it is a legal wrong relation of personal service, the question now arose whether it is illegal for one person to interfere with any contract relation subsisting between others. Prior to the decision of Lumley vs. Gye [supra] it had been supposed that the liability here Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. under consideration was limited to the cases of the enticement of menial servants, Laborers apprentices, were and others But in to the whom case the cited English the Statutes of of the applicable. majority

illustration was put in the leading case. If a party enters into contract to go for another upon a journey to a remote and unhealthful climate, and a third person, with a bona fide purpose of benefiting the one who is under contract to go, dissuades him from the step, no action will lie.. But if the advice is not disinterested and the persuasion is used for "the indirect purpose of benefiting the defendant at the expense of the plaintiff," the intermedler is liable if his advice is taken and the contract broken. The found doctrine useful, embodied in the in the cases just cited of has sometimes industry, been as a

complicated

relations

modern

means of restraining the activities of labor unions and industrial societies when improperly engaged in the promotion of strikes. An illustration of the application of the doctrine in question in a case of this kind PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. is found in South Wales Miners Federation vs. Glamorgan Coal Co.

judges concurred in the opinion that the principle extended to all cases of hiring. This doctrine was f ollowed by the Court of Appeal in Bowen vs. Hall ([1881], 6 Q. B., Div., 333); and in Temperton vs. Russell ([1893], 1 Q. B., 715), it was held that the right of action for maliciously procuring a breach of contract is not confined to contracts f or personal services, but extends to contracts in general. In that case the contract which the defendant had procured to be breached was a contract for the supply of building material. Malice in some form is generally supposed to be an essential ingredient in cases of interf erence with contract relations. But upon the authorities it is enough if the wrongdoer, having knowledge of the existence of the contract relation, in bad faith sets about to break it. up. Whether his motive is to benefit himself or gratify his spite by working mischief to

([1905], A. C., 239). It there appeared that certain miners employed in the plaintiff's collieries, acting under the order of the executive council of the defendant federation, violated their contract with the plaintiff by abstaining from work on certain days. The federation and council acted without any actual malice or ill-will towards the plaintiff, and the only object of the order in question was that the price of coal might thereby be kept up, a factor which affected the miner's wage scale. It was held that no sufficient justification was shown and that the federation was liable. In the United States, the rule established in England by Lumley vs. Gye [supra] and subsequent cases is commonly accepted, though in a few of the States the broad idea that a stranger to a contract can be held

Page

76

liable for

Upon

it

is

rejected,

and vs.

in

these Thorn,

jurisdictions 98 Cal.,

the

doctrine, Chambers

if &

identity of the plaintiff as the person holding the prior contract but did know of the existence of a contract in f avor of someone. It was also said arguendo, that the defendants would have been liable in damages under article 1902 of the Civil Code, if the action had been brought by the plaintiff to recover damages. The force of the opinion is, we think, somewhat weakened by the criticism contained in the concurring opinion, wherein it is said that the question of breach of contract by inducement was not really involved in the case. Taking the decision upon the point which was really decided, it is authority for the proposition that one who buys something which he knows has been sold to some other person can be restrained from using that thing to the prejudice of the person having the prior and better right. Translated corporation, for grazing use into terms applicable of to the sale the case of at the bar, the land in decision question is in to also

accepted at all, is limited to the situation where the contract is strictly personal service. (Boyson 578; Marshall vs. Baldwin 91 Ky., 121; Bourlier vs. Macauley, 91 Ky., 135; Glencoe Land & Gravel Co. vs. Hudson Bros. Com. Co., 138 Mo.; 439.) It should be observed in this connection that, according to the English and American authorities, no question can be made as to the liability of one who interf eres with a contract existing between others by means which, under known legal canons, can be denominated an unlawful means. Thus, if performance is prevented by force, intimidation, coercion, or threats, or by false or defamatory statements, or by nuisance or riot, the person using such unlawful means is, under all the authorities, liable for the damage which ensues. And in jurisdictions where the doctrine of Lumley vs. Gye and [supra] malicious is rejected, no with liability a can arise relation from a meddlesome interference contract unless

Gilchrist vs. Cuddy (29 Phil. Rep., 542), indicates that the def endant having its notice the That of the Daywalt, might have been enjoined by the latter from using the property cattle thereon. defendant has corporation also been liable in this action for the damage resulting to the plaintiff from the wrongful and occupation property already determined. But it will be observed PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED

some such unlawful means as those just indicated are used. (See cases last above cited.) This brings us to the decision made by this court in VOL. 39, FEBRUARY 4, 1919. Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. Gilchrist vs. Cuddy Cuddy, contract the film the to owner the (29 of a Phil. Rep., 542). It there appeared cinematographic Gilchrist rental for a to film, let it under of specified the period that one a rental In and time.

Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. that in order to sustain this liability it is not necessary to resort to any subtle exegesis relative to the liability of a stranger to a contract for unlawful interference in the performance thereof. It is enough that defendant used the property with notice that the plaintiff had a prior and better right. Article 1902 of the Civil Code declares that any person who by an act or omission, characterized by fault or negligence, causes damage to another shall be liable for the damage so done. Ignoring so much of this article as relates to liability f or negligence, we take the rule to be

plaintiff

violation of the terms of this agreement, Cuddy proceeded to turn over also under a contract, defendants Espejo Zaldarriaga. Gilchrist thereupon restored to the Court of First. Instance and procured an injunction restraining the defendants from exhibiting the film in question in their theater during the period specified in the

77
Page

contract of Cuddy with Gilchrist. Upon appeal to this court it was in effect held that the injunction was not improperly granted, although the defendants did not, at the time their contract was made, know the

that a person is liable for damage done to another by any culpable act; and by "culpable act" we mean any act which is blameworthy when judged for the by accepted acts legal likely be standards. to be that The idea in thus any of expressed society. vs. is undoubtedly broad enough to include any rational conception of liability tortious it developed the Thus Gye considered, cannot said doctrine Lumley

from the improper interference with the contract by a stranger thereto, considered as an independent act generative of civil liability, and the right of action ex contractu against a party to the contract resulting from the breach thereof. However, we do not propose here to pursue the matter further, inasmuch as, for reasons presently to be stated, we are of the opinion that neither the doctrine of Lumley vs. Gye [supra] nor the application made of it by this court in Gilchrist vs. Cuddy (29 Phil. Rep., 542), affords any basis for the recovery of the damages which the plaintiff is supposed to have suffered by reason of his inability to comply with the terms of the Wakefield contract. Whatever may be the character of the liability which a stranger to a contract may incur by advising or assisting one of the parties to evade performance, there is one proposition upon which all must agree. This is, that the stranger cannot become more extensively liable in damages for the nonperformance of the contract than the party in whose behalf he intermeddles. To hold the stranger liable for damages in excess of those at bar, that as could be recovered Endencia made against was the the immediate directly in the party bound breach to by of the the the contract would lead to results at once grotesque and unjust. In the case Teodorica it has party contract, it is obvious that the liability of the defendant corporation, even admitting that itself coparticipant contract, can in no event exceed hers. This leads us to consider at this point the extent of the liability of Teodorica Endencia to the plaintiff by reason of her failure PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. to surrender the certificate of title and to place the plaintiff in

[supra] and related cases is repugnant to the principles of the civil law. Nevertheless, it must be admitted that the codes and jurisprudence of the civil law furnish a somewhat uncongenial field in which to propagate the idea that a stranger to a contract may be sued for the breach thereof. Article 1257 of the Civil Code declares that contracts are binding only between the parties and their privies. In conformity with this it has been held that a stranger to a contract has no right of action for the nonfulfillment of the contract except in the case especially contemplated in the second paragraph of the same article. (Uy Tam and Uy Yet vs. Leonard, 30 Phil. Rep., 471.) As observed by this court in Manila Railroad Co. vs. Compañía Trasatlántica, R. G. No. 11318 (38 Phil. Rep., 875), a contract, when effectually entered into between certain parties, determines not only the character and extent of the liability of the contracting parties but also the person or entity by whom the obligation is exigible. The same idea should. apparently be apVOL. 39, FEBRUARY 4, 1919. Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. plicable with respect to the person against whom the obligation of the contract may be enforced; for it is evident that there must be a certain mutuality permitted upon it. in the obligation, and if the stranger to a contract is not liable to sue to enforce it, he cannot consistently be held

possession. two antagonistic are capable ideas of which we have the just brought must into be It should in the first place be noted that the liability of Teodorica

78

If

the

juxtaposition

reconciliation,

process

Endencia for damages resulting from the breach of her contract with Daywalt was a proper subject for adjudication in the action for specific

Page

accomplished by distinguishing clearly between the right of action arising

performance which Daywalt instituted against her in 1909 and which was litigated by him to a successful conclusion in this court, but without obtaining right not any special annexed recovered in the of adjudication to in an every the with action to referrence for the to damages. of the they Indemnification for damages resulting from the breach of a contract is a inseparably sought be or fulfilment obligation (art. 1124, Civil Code); and it is clear that if damages are action enforce action. contract her performance As in to cannot recover interpose recovered for independent of the in Teodorica was the

purchaser has not paid the purchase money, a deduction may be made in respect to the interest on the money which constitutes the purchase price. Substantially the same rule holds with respect to the liability of a landlord who fails to put his tenant in possession pursuant to a contract of lease. The measure of damages is the value of the leasehold interest, or use and occupation, less the stipulated rent, where this has not been paid. The rule that the measure of damages f or the wrongf ul detention of land is normally to be found in the value of use and occupation is, we believe, one of the things that may be considered certain in the law (39 Cyc., 1630; 24 Cyc., 1052; Sedgewick on Damages, Ninth ed., sec. 185.)—almost as wellsettled, indeed, as the rule that the measure of damages for the wrongful detention of money is to be f ound in the interest. We recognize the possibility at the that of more the extensive creation damages of the to may which be the

Endencia, therefore, it should be considered that the right of action to damages the breach res question and as exhausted in the prior suit. However, her attorneys have not seen fit to defense judicata behalf; defendant corporation was not a party to that action, and such defense could not in any event be of any avail to it, we proceed to consider the question of the liability of Teodorica Endencia for damages without reference to this point. The most that can be said with reference to the conduct of Teodorica Endencia is that she refused to carry out a contract for the sale of certain land and resisted to the last an action for specific performance in court. The result was that the plaintiff was prevented during a period of several years from exerting that control over the property which he was entitled to exert and was meanwhile unable to dispose of the property advantageously. Now, what is the measure of damages for the wrongful detention of real property by the vender after the time has come for him to place the purchaser in possession? The damages ordinarily and normally recoverable against a vendor for f ailure to deliver land which he has contracted VOL. 39, FEBRUARY 4, 1919. Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. to deliver is the value of the use and occupation of the land for the time during which it is wrongfully withheld. And of course where the

recovered

where,

time

contractual

obligation, the vendor, or lessor, is aware

of the use

purchaser or lessee desires to put the property which is the subject of the contract, and the contract is made with the eyes of the vendor or lessor open to the possibility of the damage which may result to the other party from his own failure to give possession. The case before us is not of this character, inasmuch as at the time when the rights of the parties under the contract were determined, nothing was known to any of them about the San Francisco capitalist who would be willing to back the project portrayed in Exhibit C. The extent is of the liability and the for the breach of a contract must are in be all

determined in the light of the situation in existence at the time the contract made; damages ordinarily recoverable events limited to such as might be reasonably foreseen in the light of the facts then known to the contracting parties. Where the purchaser desires PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos.

Page

79

to

protect to

himself, give

in

the

contingency from the

of

the

failure of

of

the

vendor other

605 Daywalt vs. Corporación de PP. Agustinos Recoletos. be manufactured at Greenwich until the broken one arrived to serve as a model. There was delay beyond the two days in delivering the broken shaft at Greenwich, and a corresponding delay in starting the mill. No explanation of the delay was offered by the carriers. The suit was brought to recover damages for the lost profits of the mill, caused by the delay in delivering the broken shaft. It was held that the plaintiff could not recover. The discusion contained in the opinion of the court in that case leads to the conclusion that the damages recoverable in case of the breach of a contract are two sorts, namely, (1) the ordinary, natural, and in a sense necessary damage; and (2) special damages. Ordinary damages is found in all breaches of contract where there are no special of circumstances The this sort of to distinguish paid damage. for In the an all case such specially cases from other is an contracts. instance consideration unperformed promise the

promptly

possession,

possibility

incurring

damages than such as are incident to the normal value of the use and occupation, he should cause to be inserted in the contract a clause providing f or stipulated amount to be paid upon failure of the vendor to give possession; and no case has been called to our attention where, in the absence of such a stipulation, damages have been held to be recoverable by the purchaser in excess of the normal value of use and occupation. On the contrary, the most fundamental conceptions of the law relative to the assessment of damages are inconsistent with such idea. The principles governing this branch of the law were profoundly

considered in the case of Hadley vs. Baxendale (9 Exch., 341), decided in the English Court of Exchequer in 1854; and a few words relative to the principles governing the recovery of damages, as expounded in that decision, will here be found instructive. The decision in that case is considered a leading authority in the jurisprudence of the common law. The plaintiffs in that case were proprietors of a mill in Gloucester, which was propelled by steam, and which was engaged in grinding and supplying meal and flour to customers. The shaft of the engine got

damages

broken, and it became necessary that the broken shaft be sent to an engineer or foundry man at Greenwich, to serve as a model for casting or manufacturing another that would fit into the machinery. The broken shaft could be the told delivered carrier It plaintiffs it at was Greenwich delivered be on to the the second day after its receipt by who had defendants, who at Greenwich on were the

recoverable are such- as naturally and generally would result from such a breach, "according to the usual course of things." In cases involving only ordinary damage no discussion is ever indulged as to whether that damage was contemplated or not. This is conclusively presumed from the immediateness and inevitableness of the damage, and the recovery of such damage follows as a necessary legal consequence of the breach. Ordinary damage is assumed as a matter of law to be within the contemplation of the parties. Special damage, on the other hand, is such as follows less directly from the breach than ordinary damage. It is only found in case where some exists that external or condition, as apart it could from to the actual a terms turn be to to the contract and to intervenes, were, not give affairs to

common carriers engaged in that business between these points, and would delivered second day after its delivery to them, if delivered at a given hour. The carriers were informed that the mill was stopped, but were not informed of the special purpose for which the broken shaft was desired to be forwarded. They were not told the mill would remain idle until the new

80

shaft would be returned, or that the new shaft could not VOL. 39, FEBRUARY 4, 1919.

increase damage in a way that the promisor, without actual notice of external condition, reasonably expected foresee.

Page

notification of the special conditions which make that damage possible cannot render the defendant liable therefor. were under contract to supply by a certain day shoes to a firm in London for the French government. 131) is a case where the damage which sought special damage was really remote. shoe manufacturers at K. Baxendale (1854) [supra] stipulated in the contract and informed the railroad agent that the shoes would in be thrown back upon their hands if they did not reach the destination in time. and the market having fallen. ____________ [GEO. 39. and secondly. But others proceeded on the idea that the notice given to the defendant was not sufficiently full and definite. To bring damages which would ordinarily be treated as remote within the category of recoverable special damages. Co. as already suggested. with costs against the appellant. it must so far have been within the contemplation of the parties as to form at least an implied term of the contract. R. Corporación de PP. Carson. Arellano. This conclusion is also necessarily fatal to the right of the plaintiff to recover such damages from the defendant corporation. concur. show that the particular condition which made the damage a possible and likely consequence of the breach was known to the defendant at the time the contract was made. They delivered the shoes to a carrier in sufficient time f or the goods to reach London at the time affirmed. Julian. LA CORPORACIÓN DE LOS PADRES AGUSTINOS RECOLETOS ET AL.. Our conclusion is that the judgment of the trial court should be likelihood of such damages flowing from the breach of the contract is contemplated and foreseen by the parties needs to be supplemented by a proposition which. The facts in that case were as follows: The plaintiffs.Concerning this sort of damage. JJ. The sale was therefore lost. Araullo. Agustinos Recoletos. and what has been said suffices in our opinion to demonstrate that the damages laid under the second cause of action in the complaint could not be recovered from her. Avanceña. Hadley vs. for. 587(1919)] 466 Page 81 . P. C. by advising Teodorica not to perform the contract. J. Baxendale. because said damages are too remote to be the subject of recovery. and Moir. W. and it is so ordered. 1919. the plaintiffs had to sell at a loss. it is necessary that the condition should be made the subject of contract in such sense as to become was an express to or be implied recovered term as of the engagement. though not enunciated in Hadley vs. is yet clearly to be drawn from subsequent cases.. 39 Phil. plaintiff and appellant. DAYWALT. The defendants negligently failed to forward the good due season. VOL. The statement that special damages may be recovered where the as against Teodorica Endencia.. In the preceding discussion we have considered the plaintiff's right chiefly lays down the definite and just rule that before such damage can be recovered the plaintiff must PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Daywalt vs. first.. The result was the same in either view. said corporation could in no event render itself more extensively liable than the principal in the contract.. Judgment affirmed. vs... Horne vs. (L. FEBRUARY 6. Malcolm. Torres. Ahern vs. defendants and appellees. because the damages in question are special damages which were not within contemplation of the parties when the contract was made. Midland R. This is that where the damage which a plaintiff seeks to recover as special damage is so far speculative as to be in contemplation of law remote. and some of the judges rightly placed the disallowance of the damage on the ground that to make such damage recoverable. 8 C.

the Embodying principle something is received when there is no right to demand it and it was * FIRST DIVISION. Words and Phrases. For the extra-contractual obligation of solutio indebiti to arise.—With regard to the first requisite. to give something or to render some service. 1995 letter-agreement which was duly acknowledged by their respective representatives. Contracts. contractor bound itself to execute the project for respondent.—Because obliged of 2154. 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. when there is through excess mistake. received delivered petitioner return indebiti. Factual Appeals and the issues are entertained trial court are only in petition for review in a general rule. it and it it to return the If it was Article something was is petitioner.—As questions of law may be raised in a petition for review on _______________ demand unduly to If obligation been Code arises. The parties first entered into a contract for a piece of work when they executed the supplemental agreement. A contract is a meeting of the minds between two persons whereby one binds himself. Thereafter. Appeals. VOL. Same. They agreed to extinguish the supplemental agreement as evidenced by the October 12. respondent. Petitioner as 82 Property Group. February 12. 2008. 544. Contracts. only exceptional cases such as where the findings of fact of the Court of conflicting. No. G.. FEBRUARY 12. to give something or to render some service. that of to Solutio no right it had Civil the Indebiti.—A contract is a meeting of the minds between two persons whereby one binds himself.e. Presumptions.SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. that fraction of the project cost in proportion to the SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. Same. the following requisites must be proven: 1. Primetown Property Group. This case involved two contracts entered into by the parties with regard to the project.000. Inc. with respect to the other. certiorari. petitioner became entitled only to the cost of services it actually rendered (i. Primetown of fact of the CA and the trial court are Property Group. the absence of a right to collect the excess sums and 2. the obligation to return it arises. Payment by Mistake. Page . 158768. INC.* TITAN-IKEDA CONSTRUCTION & DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION.R. It is presumed that there was a mistake in the payment if something which had never been due or had already been paid was delivered. The supplemental agreement was reciprocal in nature because the obligation of respondent of to pay the to entire complete contract the price project depended (and vice on the obligation petitioner versa). in consideration of a price certain (P130. provides: respondent. the payment was made by mistake. because the supplemental agreement had been extinguished by the mutual agreement of the parties. solutio acknowledged Article 2154 overpaid. the parties entered into a second contract. the owner/developer. Primetown unduly delivered through mistake. Inc. PRIMETOWN PROPERTY GROUP. vs. the Quasi-Contracts. Factual issues are entertained only in exceptional cases such as where the findings conflicting. Inc.000). to Requisites. with respect to the other..

only liable to return the thing delivered. from A the excess overpayment). to respondent erroneously 2160 be of delivered the Civil excess Code units to petitioner and the latter. Once the creditor makes a demand. he is also liable for the impairment or loss of the thing delivered and its accessories and accessions. One who receives payment by mistake in good faith is. cost (or price) due to the change in work or design modification. Thus. Same. of Construction can only Contracts. he from whom the return is claimed may prove that the delivery was made out of liberality or for any other just cause. If he has alienated it. Neither the authority for the changes proved made by any nor the additional evidence price for to be paid of therefor may be other purposes recovery. ‚Mora‛ or ‚Delay. v. (emphasis supplied) Petitioner submitted neither one. the written developer/owner agreement with the of two ordering/allowing in work or changes insofar as he has thereby been benefited. One who receives payment by mistake in good faith is. FEBRUARY 12. an undue payment of a thing certain or loss and determinate of the same shall or its only be responsible and for the impairment accessories accessions agreement of parties with regard to the increase in VOL. The absence of one or the other bars the recovery of additional costs. A debtor is deemed to have violated his obligation to the creditor from the time the latter 83 Page makes a demand. the debtor incurs mora or delay.—In Powton Conglomerate. If he benefited therefrom. He who accepts.‛ parties with regard to the increase in cost (or price) due to the change design modification. If he sold the thing delivered. under Article 1724 and pursuant to our ruling in Powton Conglomerate. Inc. It is presumed that there was a mistake in the payment if something which had never been due or had already been paid was delivered. a specific provision governing additional works.—Stated return thing them simply. Agcolicol. is a condition precedent of the recovery. Primetown Property Group. but. Inc. Obligations and Contracts. (emphasis supplied) Same. A contractor who fails to secure the owner’s or developer’s written authority to changes in the work or written assent to the additional cost to be incurred cannot invoke the principle of unjust enrichment. He who in good faith accepts an undue payment of a certain or loss and determinate of the same only responsible and for the impairment accessories accessions insofar as he has thereby been benefited. written in authority work. 544. in good faith. the Unjust Enrichment. .Furthermore: Compliance requisites of Article 1724. petitioner cannot recover the cost it incurred in effecting the design modifications. he shall return the price or assign the action to collect the sum. In addition.percentage entitled to of the its actual accomplishment (or extent Civil of Code in the project). Same. only liable to return the thing to delivered. A contractor who fails to secure the owner or developer’s written authority to changes in the work or written assent to the additional cost to be incurred cannot invoke the principle of unjust enrichment. pursuant to Article 2154. as a general rule. as a general rule. we reiterated that a claim for the cost of additional work arising from changes in the scope of work can only be allowed upon the the: 1. Inc. Defined. petitioner’s project coordinator Estellita Garcia testified that respondent never approved any change order.—Mora or delay is the failure to perform the obligation in due time because of dolo (malice) or culpa (negligence). 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs.. he should either deliver the proceeds of the sale or assign the action to collect to the other party. Article 2163 of the provides: Article 2163. On It the was not Same. Words and Phrases. Article shall or its provides: Article 2160. second claim for the cost of additional work arising from changes in the scope work allowed written in authority work developer/owner ordering/allowing changes and written requisite. be Additional upon the Costs. and from 2. was obliged the respondent.

9 Exhibit ‚B.. FEBRUARY 12. Jose Angelito B. architectural 1994. Jacinto Jr.5 contract6 The dated their VOL. Dimayuga for Primetown Property Group. Inc. 2 Penned in by by Associate Associate Justice Justices Godardo Eloy R. (retired) (retired) and and damages or lucrum cessans). 81-89. 91-94.: This petition for review on certiorari1 seeks to set aside the decision of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G. respondent awarded the P130. 1993. awarded the contract 471 84 for the structural works4 of its 32-storey Makati Prime Tower (MPT) to petitioner parties Titan-Ikeda formalized Construction agreement and in Development a construction Corporation. CORONA. 6 Exhibit ‚A. 490-492. 61353 2 and its resolution3 denying reconsideration. In 1992.‛ Records.9 The salient portions thereof were: _______________ 1 Under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. PETITION for review on certiorari of the decision and resolution of the Court of Appeals.—Indemnification for damages damnum it is comprehends not only emergens) to but prove also the the loss suffered (actual damages lost of profits the or the claimant’s amount (compensatory loss by supplemental agreement. Inc. 7 Id. 20-23. 200. Property Group. pp. 2003. Amado Paolo C. Bulao for petitioner. Dated March 15. 5 Rollo. 3 Dated May 29. A. particularly the concrete and steel works up to the topping of the last floor without any finishing.000.. necessary actual alleged preponderance of evidence. respondent Primetown Property Group. J. 474-488. pp. p. Inc. Rollo. pp. Josefina Guevara-Salonga of the Fifth Division of the Court of Appeals. 2008 471 Page February 4. 4 Refers to the foundation of the building.7 . pp. 10-18. Indemnification for damages comprehends not only the loss Upon the completion of MPT’s structural works.Damages.‛ Records. 255. Id. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. windows and interior and exterior finishes. CV No. the works8 parties (project) executed to a Thus. contract on for the tower’s 31. Co. 2002. Primetown concurred Bello.000 petitioner. January suffered (actual damages or damnum emergens) but also the claimant’s lost profits (compensatory damages or lucrum cessans).R. 1. 544. Wilfredo T. 55. doors. 8 Refers to all the finishing works including putting up partitions. 34-42. For compensatory damages to be awarded. pp. Garcia for Mario G. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court.

the [project] shall cover the scope of work of the detailed agreement provided: 10. not otherwise in conflict with the above terms. Inc. the supplemental agreement adopted those provisions of the construction contract which it did not specifically discuss or provide for.14 In September 1995. 1.716. CONSTRUCTION MANAGER GEMM Construction and Management construction bid plans and specifications and bid documents dated 28 September 1993.4. 11 Exhibit ‚A-1. the payment terms shall be ‚full swapping‛ or full payment condominium units. an engineering consultancy firm. the contract price for the said works shall be P130 million. 5. 2.88)13 in favor of petitioner pursuant to the ‚full-swapping‛ payment provision of the supplemental agreement. to evaluate the progress of the project. 234.Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. shall remain in full force and binding upon the Parties insofar as they may be applicable with the [project] contemplated therein.4. (ITI). 4..11 _______________ Page 85 .. (Definition of Terms) of in the construction contract provided: 1. p. 1995 _______________ ARTICLE XIX CONSTRUCTION MANAGER’S STATUS provided in the construction contract and simultaneous with the posting by [petitioner] of the reglementary guarantee bond. The condominium units earmarked for the [petitioner] are shown in the attached Annex B. 3. Paragraph 10 of the supplemental Property Group. On June 30. Petitioner started working on the project in February 1994. the contract period shall be fifteen (15) months reckoned from the release of the condominium certificates of title (CCTs) covering eighty percent (80%) of the units transferable to [petitioner] as aforesaid[.‛ id. petitioner sold some of its units to third persons.15 In its September 7.416.10 Among those carried over was the designation of GEMM Construction Corporation (GEMM) as the project’s construction manager. p.]‛ Significantly. Art. Inc. Primetown condominium units abovestated in accordance with the following schedule: (a) 80% of units—upon posting and acceptance by [respondent] of the performance bond [and] (b) 20% or remaining balance—upon completion of the project as Property Group. par. respondent engaged the services of Integratech. respondent executed a deed of sale12 (covering 114 condominium units and 20 parking slots of the MPT collectively valued by the parties at P112. Primetown 10 Exhibit ‚B-2. Shortly thereafter. I. Inc. 1994. attached and forming an integral part hereof as Annex A. 492.‛ id. the [respondent] shall transfer and surrender to [petitioner] the and its duly authorized representatives SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. All other terms and conditions appearing in the construction contract. 1.

18 Its letter stated: ‚The mutual agreement arrived at sometime in the last week of August 1995 for [respondent] to take over the construction supervision of the balance of the [project] from [petitioner’s] [e]ngineering staff and complete [the] same by December 31. Despite ongoing negotiations.‛ Records. Neither did it inform petitioner of ITI’s September 7. had only 19. 380-383. petitioner sought to confirm respondent’s plan to take over the project. 2008 473 Contra. 201.‛ id. 12 Exhibit ‚8..89% of the project (or was 11 months and six days behind schedule). (emphasis supplied)‛19 _______________ VOL. respondent did not obtain petitioner’s consent in hiring ITI as the project’s construction manager. pp. Exhibit ‚A-9. 544. FEBRUARY 12.. monitoring and administration of the [project]. pp. 1995. 1995 report. 506-509 and Rollo. pp.1. shall decide contract.‛ Records. . 473 86 Page Titan-Ikeda Property Group. ensure managers. 483-484. petitioner and respondent were discussing the possibility of the latter’s take over of the project’s supervision. p.) 14 Exhibits ‚13-P.report. The construction contract provided: ARTICLE XVII Construction & Development Corporation vs. workmanship. Inc. p. consultation matters [RESPONDENT] architectural engineering designs. agreed to hand over the construction supervision to [respondent] as requested.‛ ‚13-S. They shall have whenever execution with pertaining such of stoppage this to necessary construction ARCHITECT. the The authority to construction to stop managers the the in on [project] proper shall have general management. materials and construction. 13 See Deed of Absolute Sale.‛ and ‚13-T. This value exceeded 80% of the contract price. Exhibit ‚E. (The amount paid was equivalent to 86% of the contract price.17 Meanwhile. 19. may be The and and accomplished 31. 23. This mutual agreement on the take over should not be misconstrued in any other way except that the take over is part of the long range plan of [respondent] that [petitioner].‛ id. in the spirit of cooperation.2. pp. On October 12.‛ ‚13-R. Primetown RESCISSION OF CONTRACT inspection.‛ ‚13-Q. 15 Rollo. The [petitioner’s] accomplished works as of this date of [t]ake over is of acceptable quality in materials and workmanship. 537541. at that point. The construction managers shall interpret the terms and conditions of this contract and shall mediate between and recommend decide on all claims of [RESPONDENT] or [PETITIONER] and shall resolve such other matters relating to the execution and progress of the works. 1995 as promised by [petitioner’s] engineer.16 ITI informed respondent that petitioner.

(emphasis supplied) ‚Rescission‛ under article XVII of the construction contract never took Property Group. Tablante. [RESPONDENT] shall have the right to rescind this contract by giving notice in writing to that effect to [PETITIONER] and its bondsmen. In the all event charges that the total the expenditures prior to of [RESPONDENT] of the place. On the contrary.1. project manager of petitioner. pp. general construction manager of respondent..17. Respondent notified neither petitioner nor its bondsmen that it was invoking its right to rescind under the contract. (The said letter was printed on petitioner’s letterhead. signed the letter. ITI estimated that petitioner should have accomplished 48. or if the [project] to be done under this contract is abandoned by [PETITIONER] or the latter fails to SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. 17. 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. 386. Inc.‛ id. then the difference between the said total expenditures of [RESPONDENT] and the contract price may be applied to settle claims. 21 TSN. if any. 67-68. It is further agreed and understood that in case of rescission. the succeeding paragraphs quoted above are inapplicable in this case.3. It is understood that in case of failure on the part of [PETITIONER] to complete the [project] herein stipulated and agreed on.20 Petitioner repudiated this figure21 but qualifiedly admitted that it did not finish the project. to the [PETITIONER] but no amount in excess of the combined value of the unpaid completed work and retained percentage at the time of the rescission of this contract shall be paid. balance. Inc. December 19. and in any of these cases. 1995 report. it was petitioner who drafted the October 12. [RESPONDENT] shall ascertain and fix the value of the [project] completed by [PETITIONER] such usable materials on the [project] taken. petitioner demanded from respondent the pay_______________ supplying the scope of [PETITIONER’S] work to complete the project. No claim for prospective 20 Exhibit ‚F-1. [PETITIONER] and its sureties shall likewise be liable to [RESPONDENT] for any loss caused to [RESPONDENT] in excess of the contract price. Primetown Property Group. Engineers Antonio Co. _______________ insure its completion within the required time. 544.22 Records showed that respondent did not merely take over the supervision of the project but took full control thereof.2. 1997. Integratech’s (ITI’s) Report In its September 7. Page . including against project rescission contract.) Thus. [RESPONDENT] shall then take over the [project] and proceed to complete the same on its own account. 17. 1995 takeover date.23 Petitioner consequently conducted an inventory. 7. including any extension thereof. p. Primetown profits on the work done after rescission of this contract shall be considered or allowed.71% of the project as of the October 12. and Luzon Y. and not in excess of the contract price.24 On the basis thereof. VOL. 1995 letter-agreement. with the conformity of [PETITIONER] suppliers filed by workmen employed The on the if project any and should by be furnishing materials therefor. FEBRUARY 12. 87 paid.

779. 22 & 23 (under ‚B‛ letter Oct.769.52 x 0. 12.94 d)VAT for architectural as of June to December 31. 4..220.000. 23 Id. 12.07536. 1995 64. D 7.781. B.04 5. C.08 support for MOS precast items Architectural Works Others SUB-TOTALP26.744. 31. 2.1.688.496.04 3.125.131.6643 x 0.400.00 i) VAT for structural (42. 24 Exhibits ‚5-E‛ and ‚5-F.22 c)VAT for nos. 1995 under ‚B‛ . Inc.39 145.76 a) b) c) d) e) f) CO #1 P 7.80 CO #2 160.640. 1995-.694. pp. it detailed a project engineer at site who monitored only the progress of works in its condominium units.07) 2.000 x 0. Petitioner’s letter dated October 17. In fact. 8.808. 502-503.87 CO # 3167.756. 94-95 and Records. 19.000.25 _______________ n)Letter dated September 28..077.00 j) VAT for architectural (May 31) 1.00% Less: accomplishment as of May 1.00 l) Letter dated October 2.52 f) VAT for A above: labor adjustment for archi-tectural 313. 1995 Accomplished as of Dec.00 11.86 b)VAT for o (above) .71 Penthouse rework (structural) 1.46 x 0.507. 11. 1.878.834.577 x 0. 95-96.97 a)Labor adjustment for architectural 290. 17.830. 1995 provided a detailed account of the respondent’s liabilities.05 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED .430.A.191.15 CO #4 311.131.349.00 VAt a)VAT for e and f (above) .22 Id.350. Change Orders Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs.‛ id.000 x 27 7.7. That letter was duly acknowledged by respondent. 22 & 23 and VAT for modular Cabinets 726.200. 88 Page m)Letter dated October 2.688.00 e) VAT for 1 above I 1.668.223. 1995 35.228.849.43% VAT = 130.78 o) Letter dated October 12.799.00 k) [Respondent’s] share in modular cabinets 2.569. 1995 under ‚A‛ Nos.975.#28 10. 1995 under ‚B‛ Nos.419.400. 16 37. 1995100. Primetown Property Group.945. 1995) - Equipment 605.360.788. 18.38 g) Structural additive CO #1 41. 4. pp.85.177.07128.57 Accomplishment as of June to Dec. Petitioner did not protest the new arrangement. pp. ment of its balance amounting to P1.75 x 0.00 h) Structural additive CO #2 276.

25. 13. On February 19. 2.421.211. additive (refer to attached A.277. Inc.32 Total change orders and other claims P39. FEBRUARY 12. petitioner sent a second letter to respondent demanding P2.SPONDENT] .44 Sunnette Tower expenses advanced by [petitioner] 418.17 Balance due from 100% swapping MPT architec. 544. 5.814. 1997. filed a complaint for specific performance29 in the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB).‛ Records.61 Balance due to [petitioner] from Citadel units sold by [respondent] 240.50 Balances projects 2.g) Misc. 9. This new figure included the cost of materials (P244. 1995 (refer to the attached) is P 5.212. petitioner demanded from the respondent keys to the the delivery MPT’s management certificate27 and condominium units and the payment of its (respondent’s) balance.065. Exhibits ‚6‛ and ‚7.08 AMOUNT PAYABLE TO [PETITIONER] BY [RE. 17. 1995 P21.379.233. petitioner.850. 1995 to January 26.28 Because respondent ignored petitioner’s demand.331.82 Plus: Amount still payable to [petitioner] to SUBCONS (labor and materials) 16.08 25 Demand letter dated October 26.20 Less: Letter [dated] October 17. _______________ Amount still needed as of October 20. 1996.244.29 ADD: Balances from other projects: Balance from Citadel project P 196. on December 9.499.785.413. 1996.316.451. 1996.422.635.90 Page (supra note 24) 23. Primetown Property Group.743. & B-25 648.023. 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. pp.902. 14.035.78 SUB-TOTAL P12. 11. 16.869.316.164. 10. 1996.40) petitioner advanced from December 5.26 On November of 22.033. 1995 [amount due to petitioner] 89 LESS: Advances and payable to petitioner 18. 500-504.82 CWT and document stamp [taxes] advanced by [pe-titioner] 680.38 VOL.876.tural contract 894.15 Balance from [petitioner] supplied concrete mix for [MPT] project 20.69 from other AMOUNT DUE FROM RESPONDENT P23. 7.495. The breakdown of the accounts is as follows: The remaining balance as of October 12.

39 It concluded that respondent owed petitioner P2.677.85 Balance as of October 26. 62-63. the RTC found that because respondent modified the MPT’s architectural It also design.85 Plus: Material deliveries from October 20 to 25. For this reason. It is unclear in relation to which project this cost was incurred. a writ of execution was issued upon its finality.25.446.30 In view of the pendency of the HLURB case. 2008 479 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. pp.85 Add: Cost of materials delivered from December 6.677. Inc. because respondent .000. 27 A management certificate attests to the fact that the condominium corporation is at least 60% Filipino (or that foreigners own not more than 40% of that corporation). Primetown Property Group. During trial. to trial petitioner deliver the had to adjust mix the and scope rebars of work. pp.298.33 Respondent did not appeal this decision. 29 Docketed as HLRB Case No. 1995 102. respondent belatedly informed petitioner of those modifications. it was also working on respondent’s Sunnette Tower and Citadel projects.32 Thus. 1996 244.023. Consequently. 28 Rollo.00 R E V I S E D A M O U N T P 1.38 other In court thus liabilities petitioner to set-off respondent’s payment the keys in to the the outstanding with respondent’s refused to excess deliver 90 Property Group.P 1. respondent filed a money35 against petitioner in the collection Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Makati City.40 addition.31 It ruled that the instrument executed on June 30. While the complaint for specific performance was pending in the HLURB. respondent sent a demand letter to petitioner asking it to reimburse the Page project.40 AMOUNT PAYABLE TO [PETITIONER] BY [RE.47). it ordered respondent to issue MPT’s management certificate and to deliver the keys to the condominium units to petitioner.876. 1994 was a deed of absolute sale because the conveyance of the condominium units and parking slots was not subject to any condition.779. 544. 1997.25 Records show that at the time petitioner was working on the (MPT) project. 25.SPONDENT] P2. It is a condition precedent to the issuance of condominium certificates of title. petitioner did not heed respondent’s demands.744. Branch 58 on July 2. It prayed for the reimbursement of the value of the project’s unfinished portion amounting to P66. Records. 4853. 1997. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs.34 Undaunted complaint by for the finality of of the sum of HLURB decision. failed The concrete allowed according schedule. Primetown issuance of the management certificate and condominium certificates of title and the delivery of keys to its respective buyers.867. petitioner was not responsible for the project’s delay.785.36 _______________ VOL. Petitioner prayed for the 1995 to January actual costs incurred in finishing the project (or P69.131. 1995 P1.923.37 to Moreover.023. Inc.744. 9657. On April 29. the HLURB rendered a decision in favor of petitioner.779. FEBRUARY 12.

665. judgment is hereby rendered in favor of [petitioner] ordering [respondent] to pay the former: 1. MPT rental pool’s daily rates Rate No.867. Compensatory damages in the amount of US$1. Primetown dismissing [respondent’s] [c]omplaint for lack of merit. 25 and 26. ITI’s report clearly established that petitioner had completed only 48.260 or its peso equivalent at the current foreign exchange rate representing lost rental income due only as of July 1997 and the accrued lost earnings from then on until the date of actual payment. Property Group. 40 Rollo. P1. p. p. Respondent’s liabilities did not only rendered Total Number of units 114 units Lost rental income as of July 1997 US$1. SO ORDERED.260 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs.71% of the project as of October 12. the takeover date.44 Moreover. with legal interest from the date of demand until fully paid. PREMISES CONSIDERED.condominium units and the management certificate to petitioner.023.665.260.000 as acceptance fee. of Units Studio type US$ 75 1-bedroom unit 115 91 Page 2-bedroom unit 135 3-bedroom unit 180 .25 with legal interest from the date of demand until fully paid. 109-110.000 appearance fee per hearing and 25% of the total amount awarded to [petitioner]. 39 See notes 24.43 The appellate court found that respondent fully performed its obligation when it executed the June 30. With costs against the [respondent]. 98. the owners of several condominium units rates and divide the rent (or their earnings) proportionately according to the area of their respective units. Inc. and 3. pp. 97. On the other hand. the RTC found that petitioner lost rental income amounting to US$1.. 1994 deed of absolute sale in favor of petitioner. 41 Id. Not only did it incur delay in the performance of its obligation but petitioner also agree to lease their respective units at stipulated pertain to the MPT project (both structural and architectural works) but included those incurred in the Sunnette Tower and Citadel projects. 2.‛42 Respondent appealed the RTC decision to the CA. The unpaid balance of the consideration for [petitioner’s] services in [the project] in the amount of P2.665. judgment is hereby finding preponderance of evidence to _______________ 37 Refer to paragraph 1 of the supplemental agreement. 38 Rollo. Attorney’s fees in the amount of P100. In a rental pool agreement. sustain [petitioner’s] counterclaim.41 The dispositive portion of the RTC decision stated: ‚WHEREFORE. 1995.

[respondent] ordered deliver [m]anagement [c]ertificate of the [Makati Prime Tower] paid to [petitioner] as consideration for the [project]. 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs.. Hence. Reyes and Ricardo C. Inc. The article provides: Article 22. acquires or comes into possession VOL. absence of justifiable cause for either enrichment or impoverishment.867. payment hereby [petitioner] to aforementioned the keys and amount. 42-43. Project moved for reconsideration but it was denied. evaluations are agreed upon by the parties and conducted by a disinterested third party. 1957 ed. There was therefore a justifiable cause for the delivery of excess properties. lack of other remedy. and attorney’s fees. this Property Group. The following are the essential requisites of the action (action in rem verso): 1. or by any other means. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs.. Art. Petitioner contends that the CA erred in giving weight to ITI’s report because the project evaluation was commissioned only by respondent.000 of the value of unfinished [portion of the project]. The principle of unjust enrichment is inapplicable in this instance since petitioner received the condominium units and parkings slots as advance payment for services it should have rendered pursuant to the supplemental agreement. plus legal interest thereon until paid. Primetown of something at the expense of the latter without just or legal ground. 3. the appealed decision is REVERSED and a new one entered dismissing [petitioner’s] counterclaims of P2.677.e. FEBRUARY 12. and 5.023. shall return the same to him.665. AN OUTLINE OF PHILIPPINE CIVIL LAW. REVIEW OF CONFLICTING FACTUAL FINDINGS 92 Page _______________ .48 We grant the petition. 544. [Petitioner] is hereby ordered return fully [respondent] Upon is amount by P66.failed to finish the project. correlation between enrichment and impoverishment (i.L. ‚WHEREFORE. Primetown Property Group. The CA ruled that respondent was entitled to recover the value of the unfinished portion of the project under the principle of unjust enrichment. Inc. 22. impoverishment of another. a relation of cause and effect).‛46 Petitioner petition.260 representing as the accrued lost earnings.47 in disregard of industry practice. US$1. Puno.45 Thus: _______________ See CIVIL CODE.25 representing unpaid to balance to for [its] services the in [the of project]. Every person who through an act or performance by another. 4. enrichment by direct acquisition of ‚plus value‛. See also 1 Jose B. 2.

Inc. However. 1995 letter-agreement stated that respondent was to take over merely the supervision of the project. it voluntarily surrendered its participation in the project.000. the parties entered into a second contract. Factual issues are entertained only in exceptional cases such as where the findings of fact of the CA and the trial court are conflicting. Primetown Thereafter. Moreover. pursuant to its (respondent’s) longrange plans.54 Petitioner never objected to this arrangement. 1994 SUPPLEMENTAL AGREEMENT WAS EXTINGUISHED A contract is a meeting of the minds between two persons whereby one binds himself. they were no longer required to fully perform _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. because petitioner applied part of what it received to respondent’s outstanding liabilities. obliged to return the excess to respondent. supplemental complete the project while respondent was freed of its obligation to pay the entire contract price. Inc. The CA.53 Moreover. 1994 deed of absolute sale. 1995 letter-agreement which was duly acknowledged by their respective representatives. a glaring contradiction exists between the factual findings of the RTC and the CA.000). not merely its supervision. it actually took over the whole project itself. Embodying the principle of solutio indebiti.52 While the October 12. Petitioner was relieved of its obligation to Property Group. the owner/developer. 1995.50 This case involved two contracts entered into by the parties with regard to the project. FEBRUARY 12.71% of the project as of October 12. their respective obligations. found that petitioner incurred delay in the performance of its obligation.55 Because the parties agreed to extinguish the supplemental agreement. respondent.49 Here. Petitioner as contractor bound itself to execute of the a project price for respondent.As a general rule.416. They agreed to extinguish the supplemental agreement as evidenced by the October 12. only questions of law may be raised in a petition for review on certiorari. _______________ VOL. Primetown Property Group. Article 2154 of the Civil Code provides: Page . The parties first entered into a contract for a piece of work51 when they executed the supplemental agreement.56 it admitted overpayment. hence. Because petitioner acknowledged that it had been overpaid. 2008 483 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. Nevertheless. petitioner’s project engineer at site only monitored the progress of architectural works undertaken in its condominium units. respondent subsequently hired two contractors in petitioner’s stead. with respect to the other. however. It relied on ITI’s report which stated that petitioner had accomplished only 48. was deemed to have paid P112. The in consideration certain (P130. it was 93 agreement was reciprocal in nature because the obligation of respondent to pay the entire contract price depended on the obligation of petitioner to complete the project (and vice versa). The trial court found that respondent contributed to the project’s delay because it belatedly communicated the modifications and failed to deliver the necessary materials on time. to give something or to render some service. JANUARY 31. In fact. 544. by executing the June 30.88.716. it judicially admitted in its answer that respondent took over the entire project.

‚Article 2163. On the second requisite.57 With regard to the first requisite. Primetown Property Group. If something is received when there is no right to demand it and it was unduly delivered through mistake. because the supplemental agreement had been extinguished by the mutual agreement of the parties. compensation working Page petitioner received in excess of the cost of its actual accomplishment as . that fraction of the project cost in proportion to the percentage of its actual accomplishment in the project). the of October 12.60 If he sold the thing delivered. It is presumed that there was a mistake in the payment if something which had never been due or had already been paid was delivered.‛ (emphasis supplied) In this instance. If he has alienated it. respondent erroneously delivered excess units to petitioner and the latter. Article 2163 of the Civil Code provides: _______________ VOL. the absence of a right to collect the excess sums and 2.99) of the condominium units and parking slots covered by the June 30. Inc.416.61 The situation is.‛ For the extra-contractual obligation of solutio indebiti to arise.58 Article 2160 of the Civil Code provides: ‚Article 2160. however. petitioner However.. he shall return the price or assign the action to collect the sum. The condominium units and parking slots corresponding to the said excess were mistakenly delivered by respondent and were therefore not due to petitioner. he is also liable for the impairment or loss of the thing delivered and its accessories and accessions. complicated by the following facts: a) the basis of the valuation (P112.e.‚Article 2154. Primetown insofar as he has thereby been benefited. FEBRUARY 12. the payment was made by mistake. he from whom the return is claimed may prove that the delivery was made out of liberality or for any other just cause. He who in good faith accepts an undue payment of a thing certain or and loss determinate of the shall or only its be responsible and for the impairment same accessories accessions following requisites must be proven: 1. 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. 544. Inc. b) the percentage of petitioner’s actual accomplishment in the project has not been determined and of the sale or assign the action to collect to the other 94 assumption that petitioner would complete the project within the stipulated period. Stated simply. It was not entitled to the excess (or extent of overpayment). the obligation to return it arises. pursuant to Article 2154. ceased after the on supplemental the project. respondent paid part of the contract price under the Property Group. he should either deliver the _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. petitioner became entitled only to the cost of services it actually rendered (i.‛ One who receives payment by mistake in good faith is. as a general rule. agreement Therefore. only liable to return the thing delivered. was the extinguished.716. was obliged to the return them to respondent. proceeds party. 1994 deed of sale is unknown. but.59 If he benefited therefrom. 1995 was never due.

63 A debtor is deemed to have violated his obligation to the creditor from _______________ See CIVIL CODE. Thereafter. If these properties include units and/or slots already sold to third persons.62 This will be the amount due to petitioner. the determination of these matters evidence. Those obliged to deliver or to do something incur in delay from the time the obligee judicially or extrajudicially demands from them the fulfillment of their obligation. The remaining units. 1994 deed of sale. _______________ 62 In order to determine the proportionate cost of the petitioner’s actual accomplishment in the project. From the moment one of the parties fulfills his obligation. or 2) When appears from that the nature and designation of the circumstances of the the time when the obligation is to it be the thing delivered or the service is to rendered was a controlling motive for the establishment of the obligation. 1169. 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. delay by the other begins. back it to respondent? return to Under Article the In reciprocal obligations. the amount due to it) as of October 12. The RTC must first determine the percentage of the project petitioner actually completed and its proportionate cost.000. 488 relation should respondent 95 Page condominium units and parking slots in excess of the value of its actual accomplishment (i. based on the stipulated valuation in the June 30. or 3) When demand would be useless. Because this Court is not a trier of facts. will therefore be the subject of solutio indebiti. FEBRUARY 12. Art. Inc. paragraph 2 of the construction contract) (to be determined by the RTC) VOL. 1995. as when the obligor has rendered it beyond his power to perform. Primetown Property Group. It will only be the management certificate and the keys to these units that petitioner will be entitled to.c) the records of this case do not show the actual number of petitioner shall deliver the proceeds of the sale thereof or assign the actions for collection to respondent as required by Article 2160. having been mistakenly delivered by respondent.000 of the project petitioner actually accomplished (refer to should be remanded to the RTC for reception of further because of dolo (malice) or culpa (negligence). the RTC shall determine how many condominium units and parking slots correspond to the amount due to petitioner. neither party incurs in delay if the other does not comply or is not ready to comply in a proper manner with what is incumbent upon him. What 2160 exactly in must to petitioner Article give 2154. . However.. 544. the formula below must be used: Total project cost x % P130. DELAY IN THE COMPLETION OF THE PROJECT Mora or delay is the failure to perform the obligation in due time condominium units and parking slots sold by petitioners.e. The article provides: Article 1169. demand by the creditor shall not be necessary in order that delay may exist: 1) When the obligation or the law expressly declares.

can neither withdraw from the contract nor demand an increase in the price on account of higher cost of labor or materials. [PETITIONER] shall incur unreasonable delay or slippages of more than fifteen percent (15%) of If the scheduled the work of program. according to the October 12. relied on ITI’s September 7. sedition. rebellion. The construction contract named GEMM. 1995 demand. 544. Inc. determination includes. the time the latter makes a demand. ‚FORCE of delay report. mass public action that prevents workers from reporting for work. Inc. notice.68 In such contracts. and such other causes beyond [PETITIONER’S] control.64 The construction contract65 provided a procedure for protesting delay: Article XIV DELAYS AND ABANDONMENT 15. Moreover. MAJEURE‛ contemplated herein. [RESPONDENT] shall have the right to terminate this contract except in same force majeure. the debtor incurs mora or delay. not ITI. Primetown _______________ VOL. transport strike. if not eliminate. FEBRUARY 12. slippage. 1995 report could not bind it. In view of the foregoing. in conformity with plans and specifications agreed upon with the landowner. Primetown Property Group. but is not limited to. RECOVERY OF ADDITIONAL COSTS RESULTING FROM CHANGES The supplemental agreement was a contract for a stipulated price. earthquake. save when there has been a change in a written demand asking it to plans and specifications.67 Because petitioner did not consent to the change of the designated construction manager. and 2. If at any time during the effectivity of this contract. provided: 1. if not erase. respon- Page 96 . If delay had truly been the reason why respondent took over the project. dent took over the project for the sole reason that such move was part of its (respondent’s) long-term plan. we hold that petitioner did not incur delay in the performance of its obligation. the additional price to be paid to the contractor has been determined in writing by both parties. The contractor who undertakes to build a structure or any other work for a stipulated price. stoppage of work. the recovery of additional costs (incurred due to changes in plans or specifications) is governed by Article 1724 of the Civil Code. sixty to (60) [RESPONDENT] days the by in from delay should of notify such [PETITIONER] in writing to accelerate the work and reduce. 1995 letter-agreement. ITI’s September 7.66 (emphasis supplied) x x x Respondent x x x never sent x x x‛ petitioner accelerate work on the project and reduce. Respondent. Once the creditor makes a Property Group. flood. it would have sent a written demand as required by the construction contract. typhoon. ‚Article 1724.SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. on the other hand. such change has been authorized by the proprietor in writing. slippage. 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. cases after lapse fails was receipt or [PETITIONER] where as the rectify caused and slippage.1. coup d’etat. as construction manager.

R. Inc. 652-653. petitioner recover the incurred effecting the design modifications. In addition. written authority from the developer/owner ordering/allowing the changes in work.69 we reiterated that a claim for the cost of additional work arising from changes in the scope of work can only be allowed upon the: _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. v. Primetown Property Group. 531 citing Weldon Construction Corporation v. 1073. and 2. 71 Id. The absence of one or the other bars the recovery of additional costs.. Inc. 632-634.72 Thus.. Article 1403 of the Civil Code. G. 633. The records contain neither a document allowing a change order or an agreement as to increase in cost. pp. 127-128. 112 Phil.71 (emphasis supplied) Petitioner submitted neither one. it is necessary to prove the actual amount of the alleged loss by preponderance of evidence. written agreement of parties with regard to the increase in cost (or price) due to the change in work or design modification. compensatory 97 damages to be awarded. that respondent cannot never approved cost it any change in order. Primetown 70 Id. We explained the rationale of Article 1724. 1997. 2 SCRA 1175 (1961). or written assent to the additional cost to be incurred cannot invoke the principle of unjust enrichment. p. A contractor who fails to secure the owner or developer’s written authority to changes in the work _______________ Property Group. See also San Diego v. 12 October 1987. pp.In Powton Conglomerate. petitioner’s project coordinator Estellita Garcia testified Inc. ‚That the requirement for a written authorization is not merely to prohibit admission of oral testimony against the objection of the adverse party can be inferred from the fact that the provision is not included among those specified in the Statute of Frauds. a specific provision governing additional works.. 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. 70 Furthermore: Compliance with the two requisites of Article 1724. As it does not appear to have been intended as an extension of the Statute of Frauds. it must have been adopted as a substantive provision or a condition precedent to recovery. Agcolicol. VOL. p. FEBRUARY 12. Neither the authority for the changes made nor the additional price to be paid therefor may be proved by any other evidence for purposes of recovery. 544.74 Page . Inc.‛ 72 TSN. Court of Appeals.73 RECOVERY OF COMPENSATORY DAMAGES Indemnification (actual profits for damages or damnum damages comprehends emergens) or lucrum not but only also the the For loss suffered lost damages claimant’s (compensatory cessans). No. 1. 154 SCRA 618. is a condition precedent of the recovery. under Article 1724 and pursuant to our ruling in Powton Conglomerate. Sayson. December 18. L-35721.

petitioner submitted no proof that the rental pool was in fact able to lease out the units. 1995. Primetown Property Group. 1995 on the Makati Prime Tower and (b) the number of condominium units and parking slots sold by petitioner Titan-Ikeda Construction and Development Corporation to third persons. 517 SCRA 632. Makati City in Civil Case No. we remand the records of this case to the RTC for the computation of respondent’s liability. other than bare assertions. 642.79 WHEREFORE. D. be_______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs.M. the reception of additional evidence to determine (a) the percentage Titan-Ikeda of the architectural and work actually completed as by of petitioner Construction Development Corporation October 12. 79 See Metro Manila Transit Corporation v. Consortium.R. The March 15. FEBRUARY 12. Branch 58. 7 March 2007. or viceversa. the computation of petitioner Titan-Ikeda Construction and Development Corporation’s actual liability to respondent Primetown Property Group. 2003 resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. 97-1501 are hereby SET ASIDE. it is estopped from questioning the validity thereof. Primetown Corporation’s claims for the cost of additional work (or change order) and damages. the petition is hereby GRANTED. 2. Inc. Inc.The RTC awarded compensatory damages based on the rental pool as of October 12. 61353 and the August 5.R. and the determination of imposable interests and/or penalties. ordering petitioner Titan-Ikeda Construction and Development raising any question that should have been put in issue and decided in previous proceedings. 544. G. Corporation to return to respondent Primetown Property Group. subject to its (petitioner’s) allowable claims as stated in the inventory and 2. cause some of petitioner’s claims have been disallowed. 2002 decision and May 29. Inc. if any. dismissing petitioner Titan-Ikeda Construction and Development rates submitted by petitioner75 and on the premise that all those units would have been leased had respondent only finished the project by December 31.78 However. the 98 Page condominium units and parking slots corresponding to the payment made in excess of the proportionate (project) cost of its actual accomplishment . REMAND OF OTHER CLAIMS Since respondent did not repudiate petitioner’s other claims stated in the inventory77 in the RTC and CA. _______________ Property Group. The records of this case are remanded to the Regional Trial Court of Makati City. 2008 Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. Branch 58 for: 1. Inc. 147594. No. 1995. CV No. 1998 decision of the Regional Trial Court. Inc. VOL. New judgment is entered: 1. We thus hold that the ‚losses‛ sustained by petitioner were merely speculative and there was no basis for the award.76 However..

are or not to be granted rather on by the basis of to mere some speculation. but reference definite standard such as market value. Primetown Property Group. Sandoval-Gutierrez.. established experience. (Pascual vs. and the other is the failure to receive as a benefit that which would have pertained to him. and in the latter instance. Notes. concur..J. (Producers Bank of the Philippines vs. frequently referred as ‚ganacias frustradas‛ or ‚lucrum cessans. Chairperson). Puno (C. 502 SCRA 59 [2006]) ——o0o—— [Titan-Ikeda Construction & Development Corporation vs. only questions of law shall be entertained since factual issues are beyond the province of the Supreme Court. the familiar rule is that damages consisting of unrealized profits. Fajardo. reasonably surmise.‛ conjecture.SO ORDERED. Petition granted. 365 SCRA 326 [2001]) Basic is the rule that in a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure..—There are two kinds of actual or compensatory damages—one is the loss of what a person already possesses. Court of Appeals. Inc. as amended. JJ. 544 SCRA 466(2008)] Page 99 . Azcuna and Leonardo-De Castro. or direct inference from known circumstances.

100 Page SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Silva vs. August 29. Measure of damages in extra-contractual obligations. ELENITA LEDESMA SILVA. RESOLUTION ON MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION REYES. Lawful wife of ‚S. Same. Peralta . and the support is a mere consequence of the recognition.. the real issue in the support case is whether or not the child has been duly recognized. Same. Damages. vs.—Since appellants failed to invoke the defense of prescription in the lower court.—The issues and parties in the child’s action for support and the mother’s claim for damages being different.S. 1961. just as he must indemnify not only for damnum emergens but also for lucrum cessans as required by Art.L. Garcia Law Offices and Ledesma. Quijano.‛. This being the case. Income tax deductions not reasonable basis for damages allowed for a child’s maintenance.S. Maintenance of child proper element of damages. Defense deemed waived. Moral Damages. Same.S. claiming that— (1) Appellant Elenita Silva should be awarded moral damages for Esther Peralta’s unauthorized use of the designation of ‚Mrs. Prescription not invoked in lower court. Support. 1106. the decision of the Court of Appeals rejecting the child’s action for support did not declare him without right to support under all circumstances. 2). ESTHER PERALTA.No. J. ‚S.B. and his support could therefore be considered as an element of damages child’s mother. hence. Esther Silva‛. Abellera. does not authorize. since this is fixed for an entirely different purpose (to arrive at the net taxable income) and merely represents the amount that the state is willing to exempt from taxation. Parties and issues different. Santos Corrales & Nitorreda for defendantthat may be awarded to the resulting from a tort are measured in the same manner as those due from a contractual debtor in bad faith. defendant-appellee. Action for support not res judicata with regard to claim for damages. since he must answer for such damages whether he had foreseen them or not. ‚S. E. Urbano. the same must be regarded as waived in relation to this claim.—The individual income tax deduction for a child does not constitute a reasonable basis for an award of damages for his maintenance. the award of moral damages in favor of the man’s lawful wife.‛ not entitled to moral damages. Puno. J. L-13114.. Support a mere consequence of recognition. Pecuniary Damages. Same. ET AL.‛. plaintiffs-appellants. appellee. the former action can not constitute res judicata with regard to the latter action.—The fact that appellee was banned from representing herself as Mrs.: Appellants spouses Saturnino Silva and Elenita Ledesma Silva pray for the reconsideration of this Court’s decision of November 25. Guytingco and Antonio & Associates for plaintiffs-appellants. 1960. there having been no further finding that the assumption of the disputed status by appellee was made in bad faith or through culpable negligence.—Damages Issue in support case is whether child is recognized or not. Appellee banned from representing herself as Mrs.—The right of natural children to be supported by their father depended exclusively on the recognition by the father of his paternity (Buenaventura vs. Same. 5 Phil. B.

This indefiniteness led modern civil law writers to hold that the standards set in Articles 1106 and 1107. since he must answer for such damages. por lo que se hallan sujetas en principio a identicas regalas‛ Giorgi is of the same opinion (5 Teoria de Obligaciones. tienen el mismo fundamento. the damages resulting from a tort are measured in the same manner as those due from a contractual debtor in bad faith. Since liability for damages arises in either case from a breach of a pre-existing obligation (to behave without fault or negligence in case of quasi-delicts. That the two appellants Silva were was living appellee together to as husband that and wife was certainly and with not sufficient proof. Elenita Moreover. Derecho Civil. ‚rigen las por igual y para las las que contractuales contractuales. and. and that the man himself led her into this belief prior to his desertion. the trial court found Elenita Silva’s claim for damages not adequately proved. 378). So is de Cossio y Corral (‚El Dolo en el Derecho Civil‛. It is contended that the prohibition imposed upon appellee Esther Peralta from representing herself. and because he is now lawfully married to Elenita Ledesma. as the wife of Saturnino Silva should result in an award of moral damages in favor of appellant Elenita VOL. just as he must indemnify not only for damnum emergens but also for lucrum cessans. the article merely prescribing that the guilty party ‚shall be liable for the damage so done‛. and we have not found in the record any justification to depart from that finding. it is logical to conclude with Planiol that ‚La responsabilidad contractual y (6 Planiol-Ripert. 207208). 529. la extra contractual p. whether he had foreseen them or not. still. there being no proof that the existence of a valid marriage between Saturnino and Elenita was adequately driven home to Esther before this case was instituted. 2. Esther Peralta was forbidden from representing herself as Mrs. in case of contracts. whose exclusive right to the appellation is recognized by the decision. unknown to Esther. But an award of damages in the latter’s favor would require a further finding that the assumption of the disputed status by Esther Peralta was made in bad faith or through culpable negligence and no such finding has been made in the decision. 133.‛ (1927). Saturnino Silva for the reason that it was proved in this case that she was not legally married to him. Article 1902 of the 1889 Civil SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Silva vs. (Roces. II As to the award of damages against Saturnino Silva. as required by Article 1106. it is to be noted that while the latter’s liability was extra-contractual in origin. The facts are that Esther in good faith regarded herself as Saturnino’s lawful wife. considering Saturnino Silva’s past history connection conduct. AUGUST 29. placed in the general y rules las extra on obligations. to observe the conduct required by the stipulation). Silva should have married his co-appellant in the United States is not sufficient to impose upon Esther any liability for damages or to destroy her original good faith. 1961 Silva vs. Peralta Ledesma. Peralta Code of Spain formulated no standard for measuring quasidelictual damages. This argument misapprehends the basis of the decision. sec. That later on. under the Civil Code of 1889. Notes to Fischer.(2) The award of pecuniary damages against appellant Saturnino Silva is unwarranted by the facts and the law. ‚Los Daños Civiles y su Reparacion. pp. 132133): 101 How know Saturnino’s Ledesma was any more legitimate than his previous one with appellee herself? Page . directly or indirectly. preestablecidas broten ex-lege de actos ilicitos‛. pp.

appellee had to quit her employment in Davao. Peralta obliga forzosamente a acudir a las normas generales contenidas en el Capitulo II. a prior wedlock that he concealed from appellee). permite interpretar los artículos 1. 1. relativo a los ‚efectos de las obligaciones‛. AUGUST 29. 2.103. a no ser dañado en su patrimonio y bienes sentido. While the case could have been filed in Davao. y en la reconocida. general constantemente Asi.103 y 1. en general. caracter applicables con las clase de obligaciones. y en otras muchas que puediéramos aducir. connection.902 y 1. es cada dia mayor. sino a todas en Que las disposiciones de este Capítulo son aplicables en los casos de culpa extracontractual. según hemos antes indicado. sino. cual es el de que todos deben actuar socialmente con la debida diligencia. la En tal una habría víctima.903 por los 1.104.102.103 y 1. we do not believe that this error in selecting a more favorable venue (due to her unfamiliarity with the technicalities of the Page . siempre referencia general. 1. artículos 1. that the Esther abandoned her before it was born is likewise patent upon the record. Este idea de unidad entre ambas instituciones se traduce en que las pretendidas diferencias en order a la extension de la indemnización. ninguno artículos subsifuientes support case in Manila. and we can not see how said appellant can be excused from liability therefor. no puedan defenderse a la vista de los preceptos de nuestro Derecho positive En efecto. Whether or not the damages awarded to appellee are a natural and direct consequence of Silva’s deceitful maneuvers in making love to appellee. la sentencia de 15 de enero de 1902.902. lo que nos VOL. La misma doctrina se mantiene en la senencia de 2 de diciembre de 1946. ofreciendo contradiccion especiales quebrantamiento de un deber general.101. It is clear that Esther Peralta would not have consented to the liaison or That had the there birth been of had to no concealment child support was the a of direct child Silva’s result because previous of this Silva marriage.106. el 1. hasta el extremo de que. la del responsabilidad extracontractual. a todas aquellas preexistentes entre las partes a la realidad del acto dañoso (obligaciones legales). en ambos casos. IV. resulta claro que la aproximación entre esta clase de culpa y la contractual. implicitamente reconocido por la ley.‚Pero si ello es así. no contiene el Capituló II del Título XVI del Libro IV de nuestro Codigo civil norma alguna referente a la extensión de la indemnización que en cada caso haya de prestarse. del Titulo I de dicho libro.101 hable genericamente de obligaciones ‚todas en obligaciones‛. 1961 Silva vs. Silva’s seduction child and were subsequent likewise the abandonment direct cause of for appellee the filing and of his the illegitimate 102 contractual. del son no es doctrina Supremo. llamada porque si bien consideramos deriva las cosas. a los efectos de determinar los elementos que han de entrar en la indemnización. is a question of appreciation. de y que ninguna las razon permite el limitar. correlativamente. porque el con-cepto de culpa contractual se extiende no sólo a las obligaciones nacidas ex contractu. De otra parte. evitando causar dano a los demas. ya que el articulo 1. de los obligaciones‛. y muchas veces aparentes entre una y otra. por la conducta siempre dolosa entre el o neglipente autor del de daño los y demás. concretandose a los artículos 1. sentencia a toda de por 14 la de de los jurisprudencia afirma que Tribunal de diciembre de 1894. and inducing her to yield to his advances and live with him as his wife (when Silva knew all the time that he could Esther Peralta because of his undissolved marriage to an not marry Australian relatión juridica. En primer término. y 1. a una clase especial de obligaciones. a las de de toda naturaleza clase se de hace woman. y una derecho que todo ciudadano tine. constituida por este derecho y aquel deber.903. solamente se pueden señalar diferencias accessorias. and in order to prosecute the same.

there is no reason why her expenses for the child’s maintenance should not be taken into account. as such. it should be noted that the deductible amount has been lately increased to Pl. the failure of the child’s action for support did not adjudge that he was not the defendant’s child. in VOL. but that the defendant never recognized (CA-G. Since Esther Peralta had expressly pleaded that she had to support the child (Record of Appeal. the real issue was whether the child had been duly recognized..R. him him No. At that. prior to the Civil Code.00 damages awarded 103 declare without right support circumstances seen from the following statement in the decision: Page . the issues and parties being different. was a direct consequence of appellant’s tortious conduct. Therefore. But even at P600. since they are fixed for an entirely different purpose (to arrive at the net taxable income) and merely represent the amount that the state is willing to exempt from taxation. and always has been. It is argued that the maintenance of the child can not be considered as an element of damage because the child’s case for support was dismissed. 283. We do not believe that income tax deductions constitute a reasonable basis for an award of damages. On the contrary.law) should be allowed to neutralize the appellant Silva’s responsibility as the primary causative SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Silva vs.00 per annum. 2.000.00 per annum. the result of the child’s action can not constitute res judicata with regard to the mother’s claim for damages against the father on account of the amounts she was compelled to spend for the maintenance of their child. p. so that the P15. the damages suffered by appellee on this count. in cases arising under the criminal law. It follows that in said suit. This contention fails to take into account the action there was for support as an acknowledged natural child. Urbano. perhaps. and is not now. to which must be added the loss of appellee’s salary as executive of the Girl Scouts in Davao. and that under the Civil Code of 1889 (the law in force when the child was born). the right of natural children to be supported by their father depended exclusively on the recognition by the father of his paternity. 27. from 1945 to 1960.00 a year. except. bound to recognize his natural son by reason of the mere fact that he is the father. Peralta turn. the very fact that the child was not allowed to collect support from the father (appellant therein) merely emphasizes the account of his birth and rearing. Peralta factor of the prejudice and damage suffered by appellee. because the income tax law allows only that much deduction for each child. 1961 Silva vs. but there was no action presented to that effect. in fine). to That the under decision the all of the action Court did can of not be Appeals 24532-R) rejecting child’s ‚The proofs so far found in the record may possibly warrant the filing of an action for compulsory recognition.‛ Plainly. 5 Phil.00 a year. x x x The father was not. already amounts to around P9. AUGUST 29.000. has he performed any acts which indicate his intention to recognize the child as his?‛ (Buenaventura vs.000. and imposed no legal duty upon the father. x x x But as to the father the question is. the support being a mere consequence of the recognition. which. under paragraphs 3 and 4 of Art. pp. Appellants submit that the damages allowed for maintenance of the son should be limited to P600. 2-3). and had prayed for such relief ‚as may be deemed just and equitable in the premises‛. the rule being that— ‚the mere fact of birth gave no legal right to the child.

JJ. (Paulino. Appellants also contend that the claim for pecuniary damages has rendered untenable against it. new Civil Code). good customs or public policy‛ (Tenchaves v. 1961). Dec. Rec. our own award for moral damages was based.by the court below is by no means excessive.—An filiation to illegitimate them. Appellant’s reply to the appellee’s first counterclaim in her second amended answer (which was for actual or pecuniary damages) read as follows (Answer to Counterclaim. Motion denied. p. _______________ [Silva vs. therefore. L-15091. Escano. 10. not on the deceit practiced by Silva in securing different Esther’s provinces assent and to her live in maritally 1954. as already held in our decision in chief. Rec. Labrador. in this wise: ‚1. by applying with filing pressure him. L-19671.00‛ (Rec. Award of moral damages against the erring spouse. 2219 [10]. all to her damage in the amount of P250. 8. 11 and 12 of the first counterclaim and. v. App. etc. WHEREFORE. the motion for reconsideration is denied.‛ The defense of prescription was actually interposed only against the and Dizon. Suffice it to note that the defense of prescription was not invoked by appellants against the claim for pecuniary damages. 28. 9. Barrera. the defense of prescription is . et al. Notes. anguish and hurt feelings. Paulino. for the limitation period had not yet expired when the suit was brought. Peralta. 34) The second counterclaim referred to was for damages due to ‚mental torture. citing Art.. 7. Alcala terclaim has already prescribed more than ten years having already elapsed. Padilla. (spurious) may child be to be entitled by to the support voluntary and or successional rights from his putative or presumed parents must prove his Filiation established compulsory recognition of the illegitimate (spurious) child. p. and this defense must be regarded as waived in relation to the same.. 1966. p.‛ (Answer to Counterclaim. for her refusal to perform her wifely duties. C. 28).. As this cause of action arose less than three years before the present action was filed.—That plaintiff is without knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations continued under paragraphs 6. specifically denies the same. 33): ‚1. App. 2 SCRA 1025(1961)] second counterclaim.—That the cause of action alleged in the second coun SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Mendoza vs. App. Concepcion. Bengzon. 21 in rel. Paredes prescribed. concur. her denial of consortium and desertion of her husband is tenable because such conduct constitutes of wilful infliction of injury upon the husband’s feelings in a manner ‚contrary to morals. Upon the other hand.000. 17 SCRA 677. because they date back to 1945. Art.. to but cause on her his to 104 subsequent harassment of suit against her in otherwise Page abandon her child’s case. July 26.J.

As this Court has many times held. plaintiff-appellee. Lopez G. The and that the the has type no of merit. FEDERICO LOPEZ @ AMBOY LOPEZ. Same. firearm took As used by accusedand General appellant. The defense of alibi will be sustained where the evidence of the prosecution is weak.* PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. He identified _______________ * SECOND DIVISION. In other cases. Same. he suffered three gunshot wounds and was given up for dead by the assailant. 1991. such as the length and color of the shirts worn by accused-appellant and his companion. Same. In fact. In the case at bar. For alibi to prosper. when there is no improper motive for making it. that this witness observed even minute details. The defense of alibi will be sustained where the evidence points out. The rule is that identification of the accused. assuming that he was indeed at the party in Asterio Sonaco’s house. He again pointed to accused-appellant as the person who shot mother reported incident to the police that same night. he contends. No. Lopez accused-appellant them when his as their assailant arrived and upon again reaching when Alfredo they Padapat’s the criminal violence is to strive to notice the appearance of their assailants observe manner crime was committed. It is unbelievable. the Witnesses. should be given full faith and credence. come stars is fair and sufficient to identify perpetrators of crimes. should be given full faith and credence. The memory of the massacre was etched deeply in his memory. Same. the The natural reaction of victims of from the moon and even from the stars is fair and sufficient to identify perpetrators of crimes. Pueblas. On the other hand.– Accused-appellant questions the credibility of Mario Seldera. 1991. when there is no improper motive for making it. In 105 People v. Murder. According Philippine Geophysical Astronomical Services Administration. Same. 1999 People vs. vs. VOL. 119380. accused-appellant. Same. the natural reaction of victims of criminal violence is to strive to notice the appearance of their assailants and observe the manner the crime was committed. we held that a moon disc 62% full provides sufficient illumination in sustaining the identification of the accused and convicting him of murder. August 19. 312. Same.R. Illumination from the moon and even from the of the prosecution is weak.–It is claimed that accused-appellant was in his uncle’s house in Caurdanetaan at the time of the incident. no reason has been shown why Mario should falsely implicate accused-appellant.–Indeed. 1999. Mario Seldera went through a harrowing experience. considering shooting place the suddenly Solicitor unexpectedly. his witnesses themselves testified that accused-appellant’s house is less than two kilometers from the scene of the crime and that the distance could be negotiated in 30 minutes by foot and even less if one runs. The rule is that identification of the accused. Mario Seldera was very positive that it was accusedappellant who shot them. accused-appellant must show that it was physically impossible for him to be at the scene of the crime at the time of its commission. Pangasinan at 9:00 in the evening of November 15. he could have easily slipped out of the party. accused-appellant himself said that Caurdanetaan is just three kilometers from Nancalabasaan. contention house. there was 60% illumination from the moon over Umingan. we held that the illumination Page .SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Thus. However. Criminal and Law. Alibi.–It is argued that Mario could not have recognized accused-appellant because it was very dark on to the the night of November Atmospheric 15. AUGUST 19. the color of their slippers. This and is not true.

accused-appellant is 106 deemed to have waived objection based on the ground of duplicity. but only attempted murder. 1999 People vs. to The defense of alibi cannot was prevail who has positively over no positive improper by We hold that accused-appellant was guilty of two counts of murder and one count of attempted murder. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Lopez Criminal Procedure. shot. It is settled that the defense of alibi cannot prevail over positive identification of the accused by an eyewitness who has no improper motive to falsely testify.–Accused-appellant identified Mario as the triggerman.– but sentences him for two separate counts of murder and one count of frustrated homicide. when shot. motive Same. where when were peacefully walking along a trail when accused suddenly opened fire on them. Same. It is immaterial that there is no proof of motive for the attack because this becomes significant only where the identity of the assailant is in serious doubt. he is deemed to have waived objection based on the ground of duplicity.–But. and Rodolfo Padapat on November 15. There is no evidence that he was given further medical attention by this hospital other than what Dr. because of his failure to file a motion to quash. the accused has been positively identified. The essence of treachery is the swift and unexpected attack on an unarmed victim without the slightest provocation on the part of the victim. Lopez Informations. a complex crime is committed only ‚when a single act constitutes two or more grave or less grave felonies. Where the accused fails to file a motion to quash. Under Art. and then be at home in time for the police to find him there. the to attending the physician. Murder. The dispositive portion of the trial court’s decision finds accused-appellant guilty of ‚Double Murder with Frustrated Murder. Santos. 48 of the Revised Penal Code. each shot necessarily constitutes one act. Motive becomes significant only where the identity of the assailant is in serious doubt. where the with injuries respect sustained to Mario by the victim the were crime not was life not threatening. Santos had requested. the Aggravating victims. The crime committed is not frustrated. were Treachery. VOL. Here.back to the group.– The Information is formally defective as it charged more than one offense in violation of Rule 110. For the injuries sustained by Mario Seldera were not life threatening. However. Accused-appellant should thus be held liable for three separate crimes. Same. Criminal treachery Law. Page .–The lower court correctly appreciated treachery as having qualified the killings of Rogelio Seldera and Rodolfo Padapat. frustrated. The Court finds no reason to doubt the veracity of Mario’s testimony who was only 11 when he witnessed the gruesome killing of his father and cousin and barely 13 when he took the stand. Circumstances. He could possibly have no other motive but to tell the truth about what he had observed. he was not confined at the was referred Eastern Pangasinan District only for x-ray examination of his injuries. This is the gist of our rulings in several cases. were unarmed and were peacefully walking along a trail when accused-appellant suddenly opened fire on them. Same. Pleadings and Practice. Motive. AUGUST 19. 312. Seldera. In fact. Motions to Quash. but only attempted murder. hospital.– As the victims in this case were successively shot by accused-appellant with a shotgun. He Dr. Rogelio Seldera. The swiftness of the shooting left them helpless to put up any form of defense. 1991. But in this case. §13 of the Revised Rules of Court. it was clearly established that the victims. certified that Mario’s Hospital injuries would heal in seven days. Same. unarmed There and is identification of the falsely accused by an eyewitness testify.–The Court is convinced that it was accused-appellant who shot Mario Seldera.

although he had been wounded in the back. Accused-appellant’s companion went near the bodies of the victims and rolled them over with his foot. accused-appellant and his companion left. net earning The formula (x) for = the life computation unearned capacity ________________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.300.000. 52. and his cousin Rodolfo Padapat worked in the riceland Barangay Nancalabasaan. accusedappellant uttering a Federico word. 1991. Nancalabasaan. Mario. Umingan. Rodolfo.Same. Pangasinan. Mario stood up and. Leonida Seldera testified that her husband was 43 years old when he was killed and that he earned P13. province of Pangasinan. in the evening. forward. leading the way. the youngest in the group. MENDOZA. The Information2 against accused-appellant charged: That on or about the 15th day of November. unlawfully and . SELDERA on his breast to the damage and prejudice of the heirs of Seldera and Padapat damage prejudice of said Mario Seldera.age of deceased].: This is an appeal from the decision1 of the Regional Trial Court of Pangasinan (Branch 52). the three worked in the field until around 9:00 when they started for home taking a trail alongside the Banila river. Alfredo Padapat testified that his son. and within the jurisdiction of this New Republic of the Philippines. the father of Rodolfo. Maria for accused-appellant. he walked to the house of his uncle.00 a year as a farmer. the above-named accused together with one John Doe. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. municipality of Umingan.000. crying. a dark man. Br.–Actual damages representing unearned income of Rogelio Seldera and Alfredo Padapat should also be awarded. As they reached a sloping portion in the trail. and so the three walked along the trail single file with Rogelio. As soon as accused-appellant and his companion had left. with treachery and evident premeditation. who Accusedslumped appellant had a companion. He decided not to go home as accused-appellant and his 107 Page Honorable Court. finding accused-appellant guilty of two counts of murder and one count of frustrated murder and ordering him to pay a total of P204. was then 25 years old when he died and that he was earning P5. followed by his son Mario and by Rodolfo who was last. Life expectancy is determined in accordance with the formula–2/3 x [80 . Isidro D. Lopez appeared armed fired at with the a shotgun. APPEAL from a decision of the Regional Trial Court of Tayug. and reported the matter. armed with a short firearm. It was harvest time and the three were hired to bundle the palay stalks which had been cut.00 in damages. Satisfied that the victims were dead. 1991. assault and shoot ROGELIO SELDERA and RODOLFO PADAPAT occasion Rogelio which and with caused their immediate evident and death and on the same MARIO and treachery Rodolfo and premeditation also to the wound expectancy x gross annual income less living expenses (50% of gross annual income). Formula for Unearned Income. J. his Pangasinan. was not killed. Alfredo Padapat. The Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee. On the other hand. being the oldest. did then and there willfully.4 However. Same. Sta. He was unarmed. with intent to kill. evening a certain Mario Seldera.00 of a year also income as is: a farmhand. whose identity has not yet been established.3 Without accused-appellant three. Lopez feloniously attack. The trail is about two feet wide only. at Brgy. As it was a moonlit night. father Rogelio Seldera. face down. The 6:00 prosecution in the of presented of evidence November Lagula in showing 15. Damages. the following: At around 11.

In addition. Pangasinan. the cause of death of the victims was cerebral hemorrhage and cardiorespiratory arrest secondary to gunshot wounds. Mario’s mother was Dr. father of Rodolfo. . 1991 because they were present during the testimony in-chief of Mario Seldera. Afterwards. Multiple gunshot wounds in the chest and neck (9). while his companion had a black t-shirt. black jeans and brown slippers on. Page 108 . The about prosecution precluded inquiring these witnesses fetched from their house and told what had happened to Ro_______________ VOL. 2. He knew accusedappellant very well. The boy suffered three gunshot wounds on the back. each wound measuring about . He testified that accused-appellant wore a white. certification the first about E) and three centimeters Mario from to the the second and the latter about two centimeters from the third. because the latter used to frequent their house in Nancalabasaan to play cards with his father. Lopez gelio and Rodolfo. she said the wounds could have been caused by a shotgun. As to the gun used. When asked whether his father and accused-appellant had a quarrel on November 15. Lopez 1.11 Leonida Seldera.5 x 1 cm. Her post-mortem report on Rodolfo Padapat stated:10 Gunshot wound in the head right parieted area of head as entrance. no exit. was testified on from the civil aspect from of the case. Pangasinan. . widow of the deceased Rogelio.6 Dr. thru and thru.companion went in the direction of their house. Mario positively identified accused-appellant as the assailant. right side. Busto. 1999 689 People vs. AUGUST 19. The defense counsel moved for their exclusion but the prosecution manifested that they would only testify with regard to the civil aspect of the case. longsleeved shirt. The three then reported the incident to the barangay captain who lost no time in accompanying them to the police in Umingan. Dr. 1991. Testifying. Mario used to buy cigarettes from accused-appellant’s store. Santos issued a medical (Exh. Busto’s reports.8 events which transpired in the evening of November 15. The wounds were located vertically. examined the bodies of Rogelio Seldera and Rodolfo Padapat on November 16. blue jeans and white slippers. Busto described Rogelio’s wounds as follows:9 ______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. she said that the gunshot wounds were alike in size and nature. Although she could not tell the type of firearm used nor determine the trajectory of the wounds.5 Mario was investigated by CPL Jose Almerol. . According to Dr. 312. referred Eastern Pangasinan District Hospital for x-ray examination. SullerSantos. Mario said he did not know. he stated that it was similar to those used by security guards. the rural health physician of Umingan. Gunshot wound frontal area of head as point of entrance with exit at the occipital area. and Alfredo Padapat. 1991.7 He was able to recognize accused-appellant and notice the type and color of the latter’s clothes and those of the latter’s companions because the moon was brightly shining. he was taken to the Umingan Medicare Hospital where he was treated by Dr. Thelma C.

– the latter was known more as ‚Thunder– Lopez. Fortunato said he and Mario Sonaco helped accused-appellant home as the latter was too drunk.20 Mario Sonaco. the party broke up and accused-appellant went home. Lopez dog meat.Accused-appellant’s defense was alibi. Accused-appellant gave no explanation why in his testimony in court he said he went home at 11:00 in the evening and that they killed a dog and made its meat into a dish. 1991. though he could not remember the color of the latter. of his brother. the distance could be covered in 30 minutes on foot but Page . AUGUST 19. 1991. However. drinking gin and eating cooked _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. He claimed that from 4:00 in the afternoon to 11:00 in the evening of November 15. 1999 People vs. With that regard he to was the not always of watching accused-appellant during the party and that it was possible that distance Caurdanetaan to the Banila river. they used a lamp for illumination. Asterio Sonaco. Umingan. Sonaco admitted that accused-ap-pellant is his 109 nephew.16 accused-appellant did not mention anything The defense presented Daniel Fortunato and Mario Sonaco to corroborate accused-appellant’s testimony on the events which transpired in the evening of November 15. As to the clothes he wore on the night of November 15. he claimed he had a pair of maong pants and a t-shirt on. He claimed that at around 5:00 in the afternoon of November 15. He reiterated that by taking the barangay road.14 On cross-examination. Pangasinan. Lopez that it was dark that night and that during the party. Fortunato estimated it to be about 1 1/2 kilometers. Rodrigo Lopez. 1991. Daniel Fortunato testified that he is a barangay councilman of Caurdanetaan. 312. about three kilometers from Nancalabasaan. where the incident happened. he Asterio Sonaco. He also said that he had a farm in Nancalabasaan but he allegedly had not gone to the barangay proper as he only pass by the eastern part thereof. claimed that there were less than ten21 people evening present of in the house 15. Accused-appellant was allegedly received by his wife. Nor had he been to the house of Rogelio Seldera. At 11:00 that night. corroborated Fortunato’s about cooking dog meat during the party in Asterio Sonaco’s house on November 15. Fortunato testified that accused-appellant had the same height and body build as Rodrigo ‚Thunder– Lopez although the latter was darker. was also called ‚Amboy. which can be covered in 20 minutes by walking and in about 11 minutes by running.17 testimony that he and Fortunato took accused-appellant home at 11:00 o’clock that night because the latter was drunk.23 He estimated that accused-appellant’s house was less than two kilometers from the Banila river. He claimed ______________ VOL. He had a round of drinks with four friends12 over a dish of dog meat. 1991. accused-appellant admitted that he was known as ‚Amboy– Lopez and that although a barriomate. 1991 and that he went home at 8:00 in the evening.22 On cross-examination.19 On the cross-examination latter may have Fortunato slipped admitted out. for his part. he was in the house of his uncle. he was with accused-appellant in a party where there were about thirteen18 other people. another barangay of Umingan in Pangasinan. in the November 1991. in Caurdanetaan.13 Accused-appellant stated that he has no previous quarrel with the two deceased nor with Mario Seldera.15 In his counter-affidavit.

and to pay civil liability or actual expenses incurred during the wake and burial and other expenses incurred relative to the interment of both deceased in the amount of Fourteen Thousand Pesos (P14. Lopez doubt and is hereby sentenced to a penalty of Reclusion Perpetua Caurdanetaan.00) as compensatory likewise of damages. 1999 People vs. a resident of Barangay Nancalabasaan.000.26 Corroborating accused-appellant’s whose house is claim about that 100 it was meters pitch from dark the on the evening of November 15.00) payable to the heirs of both victims. 1995. However. the trial court rendered judgment.if one runs or uses the shorter route through the ricefields.000. Apparently finding nothing unusual. accused-appellant alleges that:29 house is less than two kilometers from the scene of the crime. When about condition night November stated that it was so dark that the policemen had to use flashlights. 1991. and that she and her husband learned that Rogelio Seldera had died.000. SO ORDERED. Costales and the policemen left.–27 Page 110 . AUGUST 19. accompanied relative to the treacherous killing of Rogelio Seldera. In this appeal. the travel time would be less. Lopez night of inform November 15. with a penalty of Prision Mayor from six (6) years and one (1) day to twelve (12) years. 312. barangay captain of On January 20.25 Costales asked corroborated the Mario Sonaco’s of the testimony on that accused-appellant’s 15. sentences Thirty the for Thousand accused the (P30. he smelled of liquor. and P300.000.000. and she was afraid that her husband might be implicated in the killing.000. sir. and finally sentences accused Amboy Lopez for the crime of Frustrated Homicide for the injuries sustained by victim Mario Seldera. the dispositive portion of which reads:28 WHEREFORE.000. he Reclusion Perpetua treacherous Padapat. When asked whether these could obstruct the light from the moon.00) exemplary damages. Bailbond cancelled. and to pay the heirs of the late Padapat the sum of Fifty Thousand Pesos (P50. and to pay the heirs of the late Seldera the sum of Fifty Thousand Pesos (P50.00) as moral damages. and the sum of Thirty Thousand Pesos (P30.24 The defense also presented Juanito Costales. they did not go out of their house because it was allegedly very dark. On cross-examination. Ten Thousand Pesos (P10. When asked by the policemen where he had been. 1991. testified that at around 9:00 in the evening of that day. that barangay of three policemen a He went in he to a his house in to the the him accused-appellant was suspect said killing neighboring Nancalabasaan.00 as actual damages in the form of medical expenses. accused-appellant allegedly answered he had been to a drinking party held that afternoon.00) as compensatory damages. she heard some wailing and weeping in the house of the Selderas. Seldera household. With cost de oficio.00) as moral damages. in virtue of the foregoing disquisitions accused Federico Lopez @ Amboy Lopez is hereby declared GUILTY of the crime of Double Murder With Frustrated Murder beyond reasonable ______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. penalty same Lopez authorities to accused-appellant’s house and that when the latter came out.00) Amboy killing as of moral of the Rodolfo damages. 1991. who testified that around 12:00 mid_______________ VOL. Lorna Gonzales. she only said: ‚It [was] dark. Gonzales disclosed that her house is surrounded by big camachile trees. and to pay the widow of the late Rogelio Seldera the sum of Twenty Thousand Pesos (P20.

Mario It is is not argued true. Pueblas. although without an exit. we held that the illumination from the moon34 and even from the stars35 is fair and sufficient to identify perpetrators of crimes. is similar in size to that suffered by Rogelio Seldera on the head. that Mario to could the not have recognized Atmospheric accused-appellant Geophysical and because it was very dark on the night of November 15. there was 60% illumination from the moon over Umingan. In People v. _______________ VOL.36 Indeed. _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. that this witness observed even minute details. 1991. AUGUST 19.30 The contention has no merit. First. probably caused by pellets from the blast. such as the length and color of the shirts worn by accused-appellant and his companion. As this Court has many times held. Lopez TESTIMONIES BARANGAY DEFENSE WITNESSES COSTALES LORNA CONDITION OF THE NIGHT. Pangasinan at 9:00 in the evening of November 15. considering that the shooting took place suddenly and unexpectedly. if accused-appellant recognized 111 Seldera went through a harrowing experience. he contends. In other cases. 312. Mario’s statement that accused-appellant used a shotgun in (1) THE HONORABLE COURT ERRED IN GIVING FULL FAITH AND CREDIT TO THE TESTIMONY OF MARIO [S]ELDERA. 1991 is confirmed by the fact that the wounds suffered by the victims were similar to those caused by a shotgun fired at close range. The Solicitor General observes that Mario had been walking under the light of the moon for sometime before the incident so that his eyes had sufficiently adjusted to the natural illumination. (3) THAT THE HONORABLE COURT ERRED IN NOT CONSIDERING THE DEFENSE OF ALIBI PUT UP BY THE ACCUSED. sustained three vertical. Mario.31 Indeed. (2) THE HONORABLE OF CAPTAIN COURT JUANITO ERRED IN NOT AS CONSIDERING GONZALES THE TO THE AND shooting him and his companions on November 15.32 This According Philippine Astronomical Services Administration. 1991. Rogelio Seldera. on the other hand. It is unbelievable. the natural reaction of victims of criminal Page .33 we held that a moon disc 62% full provides sufficient illumination in sustaining the identification of the accused and convicting him of murder. In fact. who was behind his father. Accused-appellant questions the credibility of Mario Seldera. The memory of the massacre was etched deeply in his memory. relatively small wounds on the right side of his back. 1999 People vs. The wound on Rodolfo’s head. On his neck and chest were nine wounds. the color of their slippers. and the type of firearm used by accused-appellant. Lopez (4) THE HONORABLE COURT ERRED IN NOT CONSIDERING THE EXISTENCE OF TWO PERSONS SPORTING THE NAME OF AMBOY LOPEZ. he suffered three gunshot wounds and was given up for dead by the assailant. who was less than three meters away from accused-appellant.ASSIGNMENT OF ERRORS violence is to strive to notice the appearance of their assailants and observe the manner the crime was committed. so as to enable him in identifying the accused-appellant. had his head practically blown off. As the Solicitor General points out.

testified that accused-appellant’s house is less than two kilometers from the scene of the crime and that the distance could be negotiated in 30 minutes by foot and even less if one runs. as already stated. The defense of alibi will be sustained where the evidence of the prosecution is weak. accused-appellant must show that it was physically impossible for him to be at the scene of the crime at the time of its commission. assuming that he was indeed at the party in Asterio Sonaco’s house. Moreover. He again pointed to accused-appellant as the person who shot them when his mother arrived and again when they reported the incident to the police that same night. when there is no improper motive for making it. and then be at home in time for the police to find him there. Lopez of the accused by an eyewitness who has no improper motive to falsely testify.his intended victims. accused-appellant himself said that Caurdanetaan is just three kilometers . He identified accused-appellant as their assailant upon reaching Alfredo Padapat’s house. It is claimed that accused-appellant was in his un-cle’s house in Caurdanetaan at the time of the incident. accused-appellant was positively identified by Mario as the triggerman. 1991. 1991. he could have easily slipped out of the party. In the case at bar. come back to the group. Mario Seldera was very positive that it was accused-appellant who shot them. said there were at least ten persons in the party at the house of Asterio Sonaco on November 15. Mario identified accused-appellant based on this witness’ _______________ VOL. should be given full faith and credence. it is contended that even if there was fair illumination from the moon on the night in question.41 The Court finds no reason to doubt the veracity of Mario’s testimony who was only 11 when he witnessed the gruesome killing of his father and cousin and barely 13 when he took the stand. AUGUST 19. Rodrigo ‚Thunder– Lopez was not even a suspect in the ambush of Mario and the latter’s companions. but accused-appellant stated that there were only five. nonetheless Mario Seldera could have mistaken accused-appellant for Rodrigo ‚Thunder– Lopez. He could possibly have no other motive but to tell the truth about what he had observed. It is settled that the defense of alibi cannot prevail over positive identification _______________ SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. no reason has been shown why Mario should falsely implicate accusedappellant. The latter was a frequent visitor in their house and this witness used to buy from accused-appellant’s store. witnesses. he said he went home 11:00 evening. it a is full also hour filled before and with the inconsistencies. there is no reason why the survivor from the from Nancalabasaan. 112 Page Second. For alibi to prosper.38 However. in his testimony in court. Accused-appellant’s 8:00 at in the in alibi of is not only 15. In the alternative. 1999 People vs. his witnesses39 themselves ambush could not have also recognized him. He said in his counter-affidavit that he went home at evening the November His shooting occurred but. Moreover. Rodrigo Lopez is darker and shorter than accused-appellant. Indeed. Lopez knowledge of accused-appellant. 312. In fact. Rodrigo ‚Thunder– Lopez may also be called ‚Amboy– Lopez in the barangay.40 Thus. On the other hand. but it was not by name that Mario made his identification.37 Again the contention is without merit. weak. As already stated. Daniel Fortunato Mario Sonaco. The rule is that identification of the accused.

supra. 216 SCRA 140 (1992). 46 Records. It is immaterial that there is no proof of motive for the attack because this becomes significant only where the identity of the assailant is in serious doubt. 700 113 The lower court correctly appreciated treachery as having qualified the killings treachery of is Rogelio the Seldera and and Rodolfo Padapat. People v. supra. 312. p. We hold that accused-appellant was guilty of two counts of murder and one count of attempted murder. Exh. he was not confined at the hospital.42 But in this case.The Court is convinced that it was accused-appellant who shot Mario Seldera. 1999 699 People vs. the proximity of the assailants and the location of the injuries. Cogonon. were unarmed and . Although it correctly appreciated the intent to kill. The Information is formally defective as it charged more than one offense in violation of Rule 110. it was clearly established that the victims. 99 SCRA 697 (1980). when shot. Under Art. Angeles. 13. 92 SCRA 432 (1979). However. Lopez tutes two or more grave or less grave felonies. attending injuries would heal in seven days. 48 of the Revised Penal Code. but only attempted For Dr. Rogelio Seldera. Moreno.– As the victims in this case were successively shot by accused-appellant with a shotgun. There is no evidence that he _______________ 44 People v. The swiftness of the shooting left them helpless to put up any form of defense.– but sentences him for two separate counts of murder and one count of frustrated homicide. People v. This the is the gist by of our rulings in that several not life Mario’s cases. §13 of the Revised Rules of Court. People v. the crime was not frustrated.44 Here. the Santos. Cogonon. AUGUST 19. People v. 262 SCRA 693 (1996). were peacefully walking along a trail when accused-appellant suddenly opened fire on them. a complex crime is committed only ‚when a single act consti______________ VOL. the accused has been positively identified. 237 SCRA 587 (1994) and People v.43 The dispositive portion of the trial court’s decision finds accused-appellant guilty of ‚Double Murder with Frustrated Murder. 85 SCRA 649 (1978). which can be inferred from the weapon used. Accused-appellant should thus be held liable for three separate crimes. 45 People v. People v. He was referred to the Eastern Pangasinan District Hospital only for x-ray examination of his injuries. because of his failure to file a motion to quash. Third. on The an essence of swift unexpected attack unarmed victim Page without the slightest provocation on the part of the victim. Seldera certified were threatening.45 injuries sustained Mario physician. accusedappellant is deemed to have waived objection based on the ground of duplicity. murder. Tiu. each shot necessarily constitutes one act. it should have appreciated treachery in the attack. Treachery attended the shooting not only of Rogelio Seldera and Rodolfo Padapat but also of Mario Seldera. with respect to Mario Seldera. But. Oliano. E. and Rodolfo Padapat on November 15. Gonzales. Balderas. 276 SCRA 970 (1997) citing People v. Maguikay.46 In fact. The lower court however erred in convicting accused-appellant of frustrated homicide for the injuries inflicted on Mario Seldera. 1991.

P14. was then 25 years old when he died 114 Page be divided equally by the heirs of Seldera and Padapat.00 addition under to for the compensatory damages and P30. under Art. Rodolfo. AUGUST 19. temperate damages may be recovered if it is shown that such party suffered some pecuniary loss but the amount thereof cannot. The first item should be disallowed for lack of evidence to support it.00 actual damages to be divided among them. Leonida Seldera testified that her husband was 43 years old when he was killed and that he earned P13. People v. The second item should likewise be deleted as under Art. P20. As in to this the case actual other than the of qualifying circumstance the of damages P300.R. 2199). in accordance with our rulings in other cases. 48 People v.000.00 moral damages.000.00 a year as a farmer. to failed to present any documentary proof for such.000.000. 49 See People v. Lopez plary damages and P300.48 the amount of moral damages should be increased to P50. Certain modification should also be made with respect to the award of heirs of of be damages. Under the Civil Code (Art.00. exemplary damages are awarded when the crime is committed with one or more aggravating circumstances.00 as temperate damages may be made in its place. 310 SCRA 66. 104 Phil. Oliano. its award is improper. People v.R. 286 SCRA 1 (1998). G. Rogelio treated The Seldera as lower and civil court awarded Padapat which in P50. Nos. as prosecution Alfredo Padapat testified that they could not present any receipt for their funeral expenses because the funeral agency refused to issue one in view of an unpaid balance. a party is entitled to compensation only for such pecuniary loss suffered by him as he has duly proved.000. Santos had requested. 312. Paras.700 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Viovicente.47 is fixed at P50. 1999. Fourth. Lopez was given further medical attention by this hospital other than what Dr. For the injuries sustained by Mario Seldera. the amount of P200. With regard to the amount of actual damages.00 exem- . an award of P5.00 for each set of heirs by way of temperate damages should be awarded. supra. They have likewise allegedly lost the receipts for their joint expenses for the wake. The P50.50 On the other hand. the court a quo awarded P10. 1999 701 People vs.000.000. However.000. 75 (1958). Alfredo Padapat testified that his son. No. However. Piamonte.000. Panida. Actual damages representing unearned income of Rogelio Seldera and Alfredo Padapat should also be awarded. 2224. 127125 & 138952. Panida. Further.00.00 for moral damages to each set Rodolfo indemnity. 701 VOL.00 actual damages for medical expenses. July 6.00 should prevailing jurisprudence. supra. February 25. Leonida Seldera and _______________ 47 People v.000. from the nature of the case. 91999.49 As the heirs of the two victims clearly incurred funeral expenses. 1999. Necesito v. 303 SCRA 577. be proved with certainty.00. G. to be awarded without need of further proof other than the death of the victim. 2230 of the Civil Code. There was no aggravating circumstance treachery.

Feb.age of deceased] Accordingly. concur. 302 SCRA 643. Lopez 703 VOL. accused-appellant is found guilty of attempted murder and is sentenced to 4 years and 2 months of prision correccional.000.000. AUGUST 19. 240 SCRA 267 [1995]) . For the death of Rodolfo Padapat.00 as indemnity. June 3. June 13. as maximum.000. and P160. v. P50. 312.00 as temperate damages.00 as civil indemnity. 702 702 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.00 a year also as a farmhand. 51 TSN. 31 SCRA 511 (1970). No.000.00 as moral damages. Bellosillo (Chairman). CA.. and P91. 1999. 52 People v.000.000.675.00 as temperate damages. Appealed decision affirmed with modifications. (People vs. Quisumbing and Buena.. damages. p.00 as unearned income. accused-appellant is found guilty of murder and is sentenced to reclusion perpetua and to pay the heirs of the deceased Rodolfo Padapat the amounts of P50. For the injuries of Mario Seldera. 53 Villa-Rey Transit. the decision of the Regional Trial Court of Pangasinan (Branch 52) is AFFIRMED with the following modifications: 1. Gutierrez. P50. 116281. Panida.355. 8. Jr. P5. Inc.and that he was earning P5. 1999 703 115 Rodolfo Padapat’s unearned income is: Cadua vs.–A kerosene lamp gives off sufficient illumination for the Page identification of persons. 1993.00 as moral damages. 2. For the death of Rogelio Seldera. JJ. p.00 as temperate 50 TSN.00 as unearned income. P5. 9. accused-appellant is found guilty of Life expectancy is determined in accordance with the formula–53 2/3 x [80 . supra. SO ORDERED. G. Ching.000.51 The formula for the computation of unearned income is:52 WHEREFORE.citing People v. 1993. as minimum. 17. and to pay Mario Seldera P200. to 10 years of prision mayor. Rogelio Seldera’s unearned income is: _______________ murder and is sentenced to reclusion perpetua and to pay the heirs of the deceased Rogelio Seldera the amount of P50. Court of Appeals Notes. 3.R.

When an accused files a demurrer to evidence without leave of court and the same is denied. 280 SCRA 141 [1997]) ––o0o–– [People vs. Fulinara. No. TRINIDAD y vs. EMELIO ESTRELLA JESUS MARAVILLA. 312 SCRA 684(1999)] G. (People vs. and plaintiff-appellee. 247 SCRA 28 [1995]) A startling or frightful experience creates an indelible impression in the mind that can be recalled vividly. 176385. 2008. Pleadings and Practice. accused-appellants.R. PEOPLE TOLENTINO OF y February 26. Criminal Procedure.The illumination provided by a lighted electric post is sufficient for the proper identification of the accused.* THE PHILIPPINES. Lopez. he waives his right to present evidence and submits the case for judgment on the basis of the evidence of the prosecution. De Guia. Words and Phrases. Law of the Case. Law of the case has been Page 116 . Demurrer to Evidence. (People vs.

any need for him to present any evidence is negated. This Court in a Resolution dated 2 December 2000. Thus.—It must be pointed out that the issue on the validity of the trial court’s order dated 17 May 2000 was elevated by appellants to this Court via petition for certiorari. More specifically. appellate courts will not disturb the credence. and upheld the trial court’s ruling that appellants are barred from presenting their evidence for failure to seek leave of court prior to the filing of the demurrer to evidence which was denied by the lower court. or lack of it. Tolentino Same. 672 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Page circumstances of significance in the case. so long as the facts on which such before decision the was predicated Indeed. The rationale for this rule is that when the accused moves for dismissal on the ground of insufficiency of evidence of the prosecution evidence. competently magistrates. conduct and position to discriminate between truth and falsehood. when the trial court disallowed the appellants to present evidence on their behalf. after denial thereof. Rule 119 of the 1985 Rules of Criminal Procedure. judicial orderliness and economy require such stability in the final judgments of courts or tribunals of competent jurisdiction. The purpose behind the rule is also to avoid the dilatory practice of filing motions for dismissal as a demurrer to the evidence and. . light appellate declarant’s truth and such testimony policy. dismissed the said petition. Same. whether correct on general principles or not. demeanor. to Witnesses. he does so in the belief that said evidence is insufficient to convict and. An accused cannot be allowed to wager on the outcome of judicial proceedings by espousing inconsistent viewpoints whenever dictated by convenience.—The filing of a demurrer to evidence without leave of court is an unqualified waiver of the right to present evidence for the accused. it means that whatever is already irrevocably established as the controlling legal rule or decision between the same parties in the same case continues to be the law of the case. Since the issue of whether or not appellants may be allowed to adduce evidence despite their failure to file a prior leave of court had already been finally put to rest. _______________ position witness discriminate is best between most falsehood. can weigh such testimony in light of the declarant’s demeanor. unlike appellate magistrates. accorded by the trial court to the latter testimonies court had of witnesses. the same has attained finality and constitutes the law of the case. the defense would then claim the right to present its evidence. it properly applied Section 15. Evidence. continue must to be the facts of the case public court. performed can conduct on weigh and the Well-entrenched by the trial to stand is the judge in rule that the unlike of the matter of whatever is already irrevocably established as the controlling legal rule or decision between the same parties in the same case continues to be the law of the case. Thus. Same. The filing of a demurrer to evidence without leave of court is an unqualified waiver of the right to present evidence for the accused and not even the gravity of the penalty for a particular offense can change the rule. courts adhere thereto because assigning values to declarations on the witness stand is best and most who. Any attempt to pass upon anew this final ruling constitutes a crass contravention of elementary rules of procedure. so long as the facts on which such decision was predicated continue to be the facts of the case before the court. overlooked unless or it be manifestly arbitrarily shown the that facts the and disregarded 117 * THIRD DIVISION. Not even the gravity of the penalty for a particular offense can change this rule. whether correct on general principles or not.defined as the opinion delivered on a former appeal—it means that People vs. Law of the case has been defined as the opinion delivered on a former appeal. therefore.—Well-entrenched is the rule that the matter of assigning values declarations and competently performed by the trial judge who.

issue statement of Bea during the cross-examination wherein he made mention that a gun was poked at him. appellants identified inconsistent statements of witness Bea such as the latter’s declaration that he the was a friend They of also Jesus make Trinidad an which of is the contradictory to his earlier testimony the he got mad at Jesus Trinidad four months prior to incident. Dwelling aggravating primarily because of the sanctity of privacy the law accords to human abode. There must be proof that this was intentionally sought to ensure the commission of the crime and that the perpetrators took advantage of Page . Dwelling. unarmed and unsuspecting victim no chance to resist or to escape. the deceased Here.—In an effort to exculpate themselves from the charges. Treachery. Nighttime is considered an aggravating circumstance only when it is sought to prevent the accused from being recognized or to ensure their escape—there must be proof that this was intentionally sought to ensure the commission of the crime and that the perpetrators nighttime Nighttime in is took both advantage cases an of it. Aggravating Circumstances. Dwelling is considered aggravating primarily because of the sanctity of privacy the law accords to human abode. Same. affording the hapless. Nighttime. Accuracy in accounts had never been applied as a standard to which the credibility of witnesses are tested since it is undeniable that human memory is fickle and prone to the stresses of emotions and the passage of time. Tolentino Same. Same. Same. Same. which declaration is missing in the direct examination. cannot be appreciated in Criminal Case No.—The essence of treachery is a deliberate and sudden attack. What is decisive is that the execution of the attack made it impossible for the victim to defend himself/herself or to retaliate. Same. These inconsistencies are very trivial and insignificant. aggravating circumstances must be alleged in the information and proved otherwise. Minor inconsistencies do not warrant rejection of the entire testimony nor the reversal of judgment. Same. Rule 10 of the Revised Rules of Court. Under Section 9. however. Tolentino aggravating house of circumstance. Inconsistencies which are trivial and insignificant do not warrant rejection of the entire testimony nor the reversal of the judgment—accuracy in accounts had never been applied as a standard to which the credibility of witnesses are tested since it is undeniable that human memory is fickle and prone to the stresses of emotions and the passage of time. Murder. Same. Same.—The improperly aggravating appreciated circumstance circumstance by the when only it of is was RTC. Same. 98-0260 considering that the same was not alleged in the information. the same shall not be considered by the Court in the imposition of the proper penalty on the accused. FEBRUARY 26.—Dwelling. dwelling may be appreciated as an aggravating circumstance. 674 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. He who goes to another’s house to hurt him or do him wrong is more guilty than he who offends him elsewhere. 2008 673 People vs. Same. Same. the crime was is committed considered inside the victim. Frontal attack can be treacherous when it is sudden and unexpected and the victim is unarmed. even if proved but not alleged in the information. Same.VOL. When the crime is committed in the dwelling of the offended party and the latter has not given provocation. Dwelling cannot be appreciated when not alleged in the information. Frontal attack can be treacherous when it is sudden and unexpected and the victim is unarmed. 546. Witness Bea’s inconsistencies rather enhance truthfulness for it erases suspicion of a rehearsed testimony. 118 considered aggravating sought to prevent the accused from being recognized or to ensure their escape.

(4) exemplary damages. This does not require allegation and proof of the emotional suffering of the heirs. Public Attorney’s Office for accused-appellants. Damages.000. in proper cases. P25. the that such wounds inflicted would naturally cause physical suffering. J. Same. fright. 00880 which affirmed the Decision2 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Labo. (2) actual or compensatory damages.00.00 exemplary damages is proper. Tolentino Novelo as civil indemnity. (5) attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation.000. but the medical certificate issued by the hospital indicated that the victim sustained serious stab injuries inflicted by the accused.00 in view of the violent death of the victim. invasion vindication undue rights injured punishment for those guilty of outrageous conduct. there is no evidence that the appellants and their companions took advantage of nighttime or that nighttime facilitated the commission of the crime. The award of moral damages in case of violent death of the victim does not require allegation and proof of the emotional suffering of the heirs. 98-0270. Damages. the RTC award of civil indemnity ex delicto of P75. The accusatory portions of the Informations read: Criminal Case No. FEBRUARY 26. 98-0258 transgressions. three separate informations of Murder and two counts of Frustrated Murder were filed before the RTC against appellants. together with accused Jimmy Trinidad and Arnel Trinidad.00 in favor of the heirs of Josita Novelo is in order. Evidence. and (6) interest. the same is sufficient basis to award moral damages as ordinary human experience and common sense dictate Page . (3) moral damages. and similar injury. guilty of the crime of Murder and two counts of Frustrated Murder. wanton This kind of of damage and the as is a intended of an to serve of or as a following may be recovered: (1) civil indemnity ex delicto for the death of the victim. CR-HC No. 98-0260 and No. The Court of Appeals reduced the award of civil indemnity to P50. The RTC also correctly awarded moral damages in the amount of P50. 2008 675 People vs. Article 2230 of the Civil Code states that exemplary damages may be imposed when the the Court crime as in finds was this that committed case. Although the crime was committed at nighttime.it. moral shock. Even if there was no testimony on the moral damages that he sustained. Camarines Norte. future deterrent sufferings serious wrong-doings. When death occurs due to a crime. Based on current jurisprudence.ex delicto VOL. Civil indemnity is mandatory and granted to the heirs of the victim without need of proof other than the commission of the crime. The Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee. 119 Frustrated Murder. an To award with deter of one or more similar for aggravating circumstances.000. serious anxiety. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. On 13 February 1998.: For review is the Decision1 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.000. Same. 98-0258 while the two frustrated murder cases were docketed as Criminal Cases No. Tolentino and Jesus M.R. CHICO-NAZARIO. 546. Trinidad. Branch 64. APPEAL from a decision of the Court of Appeals. Tolentino the New Civil to and Code. The murder case was docketed as Criminal Case No. 676 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. finding appellants Emelio E.

Philippines. while armed with firearms with treachery. 546. attain and conspiring. able assistance the damage prevented his death. CA Rollo. did. Tolentino That the commission of the offense is attended by aggravating same and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. hitting him on the different parts of his body and then shot one said Antonio Novelo but missed. Barangay San Vicente. of unlawfully. assault. did not produce it by reason of causes independent of their will.4 circumstance dwelling. confederating and mutually helping one another with intent to kill with treachery and evident premeditation and while armed with long firearms and 12 gauge shot gun. hence. VOL. prejudice that is. Philippines. conspiring. purpose. 15-29. Barangay San Vicente. by the timely and able medical assistance rendered to said Antonio Novelo. 2 Penned by Judge Franco T. Santa Elena. concurring. assault. 98-0260 For: Frustrated Murder ‚That on or about 11:10 in the evening of the 29th day of August. by then and there. Sundiam and Celia C. 1997. 98-0270 For: Frustrated Murder 678 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.‛3 During the arraignment on 13 July 1998. performing acts as and execution produced did to not said of crime it murder timely consequence. and within the jurisdic_______________ ANTONIO BEA. by the which private 1 Penned by Associate Justice Rodrigo V. at Purok 7.‛ of nighttime purposely sought to facilitate the Criminal Case No. then and there willfully. pp. entered their respective pleas of not guilty. stabbing said victim all the on different of a parts of his which but body. Tolentino Justices Edgardo F. which ordinarily would cause the death of Antonio Novelo thus performing all the acts of execution which should have produced the crime of Murder as a consequence. FEBRUARY 26. at Purok 7. on the 29th day of August. a common confederating. more or less. evident did and mutually and helping there. kick and strike one ANTONIO NOVELO with a shotgun. the above-named accused. with intent to kill. Camarines Norte. tying his hands with a rope and thereafter. 1997. 2-18. 2008 677 People vs. and each 120 then willfully. unlawfully and feloniously attack. and within the jurisdiction of the Honorable Court. poking a firearm at said private offended party. premeditation abuse superior strength. and use personal violence upon one Page .For: Murder ‚That on or about 11:10 o’clock in the evening. Santa Elena. appellants. that is. Camarines Norte. attack. and feloniously. but nonetheless. could thus have causing upon the the latter of by serious and mortal wounds capable of causing death. which prevented his death. to his damage and prejudice. rendered and produce victim herein reason of causes independent of their (accused) will. Librea-Leagogo. pp.‛ Criminal Case No. Falcon. with the assistance of counsel de parte. Cosico with Associate complainant. Rollo. to knife. medical to nonetheless. the abovenamed other and accused.

Exhibit ‚I‛—the medical certificate of Antonio Novelo. (3) Wilfredo Llarena. Trinidad they was discovered that all the fish and crabs in the fishpond had already been harvested disposed Believing appellant responsible for the pilferage. Exhibit ‚A-1‛—the ‚x‛ mark on the face of Josita Novelo. 546. the prosecution offered the following: Exhibit ‚A‛—a photograph of the bloody body of Josita Novelo. Josita demanded from him either the return 680 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. p. (9) Dr. a Barangay Captain. Victoria. Exhibit ‚G‛—the affidavit of Ricardo Basila. Tolentino medical records of Antonio Bea. Exhibits ‚C‛ and ‚D‛—photographs of the house where the of incident Antonio of killing Exhibit took place. when the fishpond was yielding its first harvest. Sometime in April of the same year. Manila. testified incident that to several the persons went (4) to his house carrying testified an injured the Antonio Bea and they proceeded to the hospital. Camarines Norte. Rogelio Novelo and his wife Josita brought the produce to Manila to be sold. Rolando C. The collective evidence adduced by the prosecution shows that sometime in January 1997. Thereafter. a joint trial on the merits of the three criminal cases ensued. The prosecution presented the following witnesses and their respective testimonies: (1) Antonio Bea testified as an eyewitness on the killing of Josita Novelo and narrated his own near death experience. 56. Elena. and Exhibit ‚K‛—the NBI autopsy report. of. the surviving spouse of the deceasedvictim Josita Novelo. (6) Belen Avellera testified on the existence of the _______________ partnership turned sour as Jesus Trinidad harvested the yields of the fishpond without his consent. 4 Records. Exhibit ‚H‛—the affidavit of Antonio Novelo. 2008 679 People vs. Exhibit of ‚E‛—the Antonio medical certificate Bea. ‚F‛—the affidavit Bea. while appellant Jesus Trinidad was left to and manage the fishpond. Santa Elena. Upon that the couple’s return.Accused Jimmy and Arnel Trinidad remained at large. conducted an autopsy of the body of Josita Novelo. pp. Tolentino barangay 3 Rollo. (2) Ricardo Basila testified that he saw the accused escorting Antonio Bea whose hands were tied and disclosed that he was also subjected to violent acts of the accused. Camarines Norte. Rogelio Novelo. As documentary evidence. Noli Bayani. a Medico-Legal Officer of the NBI. (7) SPO2 Nelson Ricierra testified that 121 Wilfredo Llarena reported to him the stabbing and the killing incidents and that he of was the a member report. Antonio Novelo that accused went to the house of Josita Novelo and attempted to kill him. (5) Dr. VOL. Exhibit ‚J‛—the death certificate of Josita Novelo showing the result of the post-mortem examination. and appellant Jesus Trinidad agreed to manage and operate a rented fishpond located at Barangay San Vicente. 2-3. Exhibit ‚B‛—a photograph showing the victim prostrate on the ground. conducted a post-mortem examination of the body of Josita Novelo. He later reported the police officers. He claimed that he later heard a gunshot coming from Josita Novelo’s house. the rural health physician of Sta. FEBRUARY 26. (8) of the Rogelio team who made testified a follow-up Jesus investigation Novelo that Page Trinidad used to be his partner in operating a fishpond and that their .

15 Id. proceeded to the house of the spouses Novelo situated alongside the fishpond which was more or . together with Antonio Bea. Emelio Tolentino entered the house and slashed the face of Josita with a jungle bolo. 536-537. 16 Id. Santa Elena. 10 TSN. at p. 547.18 The three assailants untied the binding on Antonio hands appellant Tolentino pulled him by the rope towards the house of a certain Ricardo Basila. Tolentino _______________ 9 Id... at p. Novelo’s Tolentino. Bea went outside and focused his flashlight towards the direction of the fishpond watergate (‚prensa‛). tied a Emelio Jesus rope right side back. one of the complainants and the caretaker of the couple’s fishpond. Tinagong Dagat. 8 September 1998. Trinidad and Emelio Tolentino kicked Antonio Novelo causing the latter to fall right into the fishpond and disappear from sight. 546. p. was inside his house located at Purok 7. Antonio Bea. pp. 527-528. at p. Carrying a flashlight. Jesus Trinidad called Josita Novelo to get out of the house.5 He heard someone calling his name from outside his house.12 Josita Novelo went out of the house holding a light. at around 10:30 p. someone whom he recognized to be appellant Emelio Tolentino grabbed his hand and pulled him out of the house.14 Immediately... Trinidad took Antonio Bea to another door leading outside and chanced Antonio Rogelio brother. Antonio Bea saw Josita Novelo being mauled by Jesus Trinidad and Arnel Trinidad. 10 August 1998. at p. 549. VOL.13 Jesus Trinidad quickly grabbed Josita Novelo by her mouth and the two of them went inside Antonio upon the house together inside with the Emelio house. 7 Id. 13 Id. 2008 681 People vs. 14 Id. went out of his house and focused the flash_______________ 5 TSN. 6 Id. Barangay San Vicente. 54.11 When they arrived at the Novelo house. 551. Camarines Norte.On 29 August 1997. 122 Page 910 The assailants.16 In that position. 12 Id. 11 TSN.. 546. 550. From Novelo. hip. FEBRUARY 26. Ricardo Basila. Jesus Trinidad shot Josita Novelo on the left cheek with a gun. p. at p. 10 August 1998.7 There he saw appellant Trinidad around Jesus kicked his Trinidad... at p. Emelio Jesus Tolentino Trinidad and and Jesus Jesus Bea. and less 100 meters from Basila’s house. 325. 8 Id.17 Immediately after.m. Arnel Trinidad called out the former. 532. All of a sudden.6 Suddenly. at pp.15 Antonio Bea was then tied to the door from the waist down with Emelio Tolentino guarding him.8 Upon reaching the house of Ricardo Basila. with a flashlight in his hand. Bea on behind Jimmy the his Trinidad of Then and his Arnel Trinidad..

682 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. The RTC denied the said motion. praying that the order denying their Demurrer to Evidence be recalled and that they be allowed to present evidence. Camarines Norte. at p. the prosecution rested its case and made a _______________ followed by Bea. denied to On submitted of the appellants case Rules a decision Criminal for pursuant Section 1985 Procedure. 20. The assailants left the victim and boarded a boat which was operated by Jimmy Trinidad. p. 22 TSN. p.25 On the 13 RTC April 2000. 13. the 31 appellants demurrer 15. along some members police. p. Unfazed. Rolando C. of the Wilfredo Llarena. VOL. Page 123 . which became final and executory on 5 February 2003. conducted an autopsy of the body and found that the cause of Josita Novelo’s death was ‚[h]ypovolemic shock secondary to gunshot wounds and lacerated wound. counsel filed the a Demurrer for on to Evidence. 22 September 1998. Antonio Bea fell into the fishpond.. This Court denied the petition in a Resolution dated 2 December 2002. 20 TSN. Rule May through and 119 2000. who also conducted an autopsy on the body of the deceased. appellants filed a petition for certiorari before this Court. He received help from the people of Purok 7 and Barangay captain Barangay Captain then Captain Wilfredo the Llarena victim to brought was brought to the house of the in a a hammock. 10 November 1998.21 Dr. with From The the barangay hospital.19 They left Novelo’s about house proceeding from towards the the fishpond Emelio watergate led times which the in was way. 24 Rollo.28 filed motion reconsideration. 378. 56. Emelio Tolentino stabbed Antonio stomach with the former’s jungle bolo.‛22 Dr. 28.17 Id. 546. Elena. at p. Injured and bleeding.. the three meters house.. 18 Id. without leave of court. testified that the shotgun wound at the left side of the face of the victim caused her death. 16. p. 24 August 1999. 23 TSN. went to the house of spouses Novelo and came upon the dead body of Josita Novelo. FEBRUARY 26. Victoria. a Medico-Legal Officer of the National Bureau of Investigation.20 hospital. at p. Tolentino Bea’s feet while leaving the ropes tied behind his back. Tolentino Bea four 19 Id.23 The medical certificate of Antonio Bea shows that the four stab wounds inflicted on him caused damage to his intestines.. Tolentino On 19 October 1999. Without warning. Antonio Bea managed to untie his hands and swim across the river to ask for help. at p. 73. 21 Id. 57. with Jesus and Arnel Trinidad taking the rear. 2008 683 People vs.26 In an order27 dated 17 May 2000. the Rural Health Physician of Sta. Noli Bayani.24 formal offer of evidence.

000. finding accused EMELIO TOLENTINO y ESTRELLA and JESUS TRINIDAD y MARAVILLA guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime penalty victim.. On 10 December 2004.000. 28 SEC. P50. the case was submitted for decision without any evidence proffered by the defense. CASE NO. of Frustrated Bea Murder.‛29 The trial court. 199-202.‛ CRIM.‛30 Appellants argued that in the interest of justice and equity.00 and _______________ indemnity. they the amount are of hereby sentenced as to civil suffer the penalty of RECLUSION PERPETUA. 98-0260 25 Id. the court may dismiss the case on the ground of insufficiency of evidence: (1) on its own initiative after giving the prosecution an opportunity to be heard. DEATH. at pp. 15. 98-0258 For: MURDER ‚WHEREFORE. however. P50. or (2) on motion of the accused filed with prior leave of court.00 exemplary damages.00 they are the as hereby also amount moral sentenced ordered of to to suffer the by the heirs way supreme of of the civil as They are pay Josita Novelo. They are also ordered to pay their Antonio P50. 98-0270. 684 For: FRUSTRATED MURDER ‚WHEREFORE. 27 Id. 26 Records. When the accused files such motion to dismiss without express leave of court.000. he waives the right to present evidence and submits the case for judgment on the basis of the evidence for the prosecution. The decretal portion of the RTC decision reads: CRIM. they should be given the opportunity to testify in their favor considering that they are meted out by the RTC the supreme penalty of death. On 30 November 2004. damages another P50. acquitted appellants of the crime of frustrated murder allegedly committed against Antonio Novelo in Criminal Case No.000. 98-0260 for murder and frustrated murder. the RTC denied appellants’ motion for new trial ratiocinating that the error of appellants’ counsel during the trial does not amount to error 124 Page SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. appellants filed a Motion For New Trial on the ground that ‚errors of law or irregularities prejudicial to the substantial rights of the accused have been committed during the trial. P75.. 204-205. finding accused EMELIO TOLENTINO y ESTRELLA and JESUS TRINIDAD y MARAVILLA guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime victim. at p.—After the prosecution has rested its case. 6. the RTC rendered a decision finding appellants guilty of the crimes charged in Criminal Case No. If the Court denies the motion for dismissal. Tolentino . Demurrer to evidence.000.As a result. In an Order31 dated 15 December 2004.00 indemnity. the accused may adduce evidence in his defense. CASE NO.00 as exemplary damages.000. pp. 98-0258 and Criminal Case No.00 as moral damages and P30. respectively. of of Murder.

Mateo.32 The Court of Appeals. 147678-87. 98-0260 is hereby AFFIRMED with the following modifications. p. VOL. The trial court ordered the transmittal of the entire records of the case to this Court. P30. 686 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. 98-0260. P50. at p. the to 14 of are years hereby and 8 as civil sentenced each to suffer the penalty of imprisonment ranging from 8 (minimum). with modifications on the award of civil liabilities. at pp. 29 Id.‛33 Hence. 825._______________ addition. on 8 November 2006. It appears that appellants no longer questioned the denial of their motion for new trial. 819-823. to wit: (1) In Criminal each Case to No. 546.R.000 indemnity and P25. 98-0258.000 as civil indemnity for her death. Tolentino of law or irregularity which constitutes a valid ground for the granting of a motion for new trial. 7 July 2004. 30 Id. Nos.000 as temperate damages. _______________ 32 G. FEBRUARY 26. II REASONABLE Page sentenced suffer the perpetua . to pay the heirs of the victim Josita Fernandez Novelo the amount of P50.000 as exemplary damages. 17. 806-807. Antonio as months of reclusion temporal (minimum) as maximum. and frustrated murder in Criminal Case No. they are ordered victim P30. 433 SCRA 640.. Thereafter. penalty accused-appellants of reclusion are hereby and in ACCUSED-APPELLANTS CRIMES CHARGED. the instant case. of y Labo. damages.. Branch 64.000 representing exemplary damages. the appellants assign the following errors: I THE COURT A QUO GRAVELY BEYOND ERRED IN CONVICTING DOUBT OF THE THE GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of murder in Criminal 125 Case No. the decision dated November 23. 31 Id. Camarines and Norte finding y accusedMaravilla appellants Emelio Tolentino Estrella Jesus Trinidad (2) In years of Criminal prision to pay Case mayor the No. promulgated its Decision affirming the judgment of the trial court convicting the appellants. at pp. this Court ordered the referral of the case to the Court of Appeals conformably with the ruling in the case of People v. thus: ‚WHEREFORE. Moreover. Tolentino In their brief. as accused-appellants minimum. 98-0258. 2004 of the Regional Trial Court..000 as moral damages and P25.000 Bea moral amount P25. 2008 685 People vs. 33 Rollo.

the court may dismiss the case on the ground of insufficiency of prosecution opportunity to be heard. as earlier mentioned. Appellants. the Court deems it proper to first deal with the second assignment. Rule 119 of the 1985 Rules of Criminal Procedure. 126 34 CA Rollo. whether correct on general principles or not. Law of the case has More been defined it as the opinion that delivered is on a PROVE THAT BEA’S WOUNDS WERE MORTAL.THE COURT A QUO GRAVELY TO ERRED IN NOT ALLOWING THE People vs. This Court in a Resolution dated 2 December 2000. VOL.37 Besides. or (2) on motion of the accused filed with prior leave of court.—After own initiative the after prosecution giving the has rested its an case. under Section 15.35 specifically. 2008 687 _______________ Page . thus: ‚SEC. the same has attained finality and constitutes the law of the case. he waives his right to present evidence and submits the case for judgment on the basis of the evidence of the prosecution. judicial orderliness and economy require such stability in the final judgments of courts or tribunals of competent jurisdiction. THE COURT A ERRED FINDING THEM CRIME FAILED FRUSTRATED MURDER ALTHOUGH PROSECUTION upon anew this final ruling elementary rules of procedure. 546. It must be pointed out that the issue on the validity of the trial court’s order dated 17 May 2000 was elevated by appellants to this Court via petition for certiorari. dismissed the said petition. 47-48. Any attempt to constitutes crass contravention of GUILTY OF INFLICTING INJURY ON ANTONIO BEA. urge this Court to revisit the issue as to the propriety of the trial court’s Order dated 17 May 2000 denying the Demurrer to Evidence and preventing them from presenting evidence due to their failure to seek leave of court prior to the filing of the demurrer to evidence. Tolentino of court prior to the filing of the demurrer to evidence which was ACCUSED-APPELLANTS PRESENT DEFENSE EVIDENCE AFTER THE DENIAL OF THE DEMURRER TO EVIDENCE CONSIDERING THE POSSIBILITY OF THE IMPOSITION OF THE DEATH PENALTY. 15. it is stated that when an accused files a demurrer to evidence without leave of court and the same is denied. Demurrer evidence: (1) on to its evidence. Since the issue of whether or not appellants may be allowed to adduce evidence despite their failure to file a prior leave pass of court had already been finally put to a rest. so long as the facts on which such decision was predicated continue to be the facts of the case before the court. courts must adhere thereto because public policy. means whatever already irrevocably established as the controlling legal rule or decision between the same parties in the same case continues to be the law of the case.36 Indeed. and upheld the trial court’s ruling that appellants are barred from presenting their evidence for failure to seek leave _______________ former appeal. III GRANTING QUO ARGUENDO IN THAT THE ACCUSED-APPELLANTS GUILTY THE OF THE WERE OF TO denied by the lower court. pp.34 Before proceeding to the first and third assignment of errors. FEBRUARY 26.

‛42 Going back to the first issue. after its denial thereof. Magada. v. Tolentino that upon the denial of the demurrer to evidence in this case. witness Antonio Bea could deceased Novelo. 36 Id.39 An accused cannot be allowed by espousing to wager on the outcome whenever of judicial dictated by proceedings inconsistent viewpoints convenience. shall waive the right to present evidence in his behalf. No. Tolentino If the Court denies the motion for dismissal.41 trial court disallowed accused.35 Private Enterprise Corp. Page . 464 Phil. rules on demurrer to evidence is a fundamental component of criminal procedure. 180. defense when would the then claim the right to the present evidence. Rule 119 of the 1985 Rules of Criminal Procedure. 674 (2004). 419 SCRA 659.R. It is not for him to grant concessions to the accused who failed to obtain prior leave of court. 41 Id. 39 Id. 2008 689 People vs. the Thus. Appellants the that incident of the is that considering seen Josita clearly lateness faces Antoio of of the hour when his attackers according and to appellants to present evidence on their behalf. Not even the gravity of the penalty for a particular offense can change this rule. any need for him to present any evidence is negated. The rule is clear _______________ 38 People v. it properly applied Section 127 15. G. and the fact that it was dark. 688 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. the unqualified waiver of the right to present evidence for the accused. the Considering obligation to that the governing the same. 494 SCRA 167. respondent judge observe regardless of the gravity of the offense charged. When the accused files such motion to dismiss without express leave of court. 546. he waives the right to present evidence and submits the case for judgment on the basis of the evidence for the prosecution. 824. 844.38 The rationale for this rule is that when the accused moves for dismissal on the ground of insufficiency of evidence of the prosecution evidence. 37 Id. he does so in the belief that said evidence is insufficient to convict and. Sayaboc. 149489.40 The purpose behind the rule is also to avoid the dilatory practice of filing motions for dismissal as a demurrer to the evidence and.‛ The filing of a demurrer to evidence without leave of court is an ‚The filing of the demurrer to evidence without leave of court and its subsequent denial results in the submission of the case for judgment on the basis of the evidence on had record. the accused may adduce evidence in his defense. therefore. who failed to ask for leave of court. appellants take exception with the trial court’s assessment of the evidence before it and in giving weight and credence maintain not have to the testimony the the of the prosecution witnesses. FEBRUARY 26. Bea. 40 Id. appellants. VOL. As stressed by this Court: took place. 30 June 2006.

overlooked unless or it be manifestly arbitrarily shown the that facts the and disregarded circumstances of significance in the case. or lack of it. x x x x Q: A certain Emelio Tolentino y Estrella. 429 Phil. Such identification was detailed as follows: _______________ 42 Osumo v. what did you do? A: I flash[ed] a light to the Prensa. do you recall of any unusual incident that happened? A: Yes. prosecution witness Antonio Bea steadfastly pointed to appellants and their companions as the malefactors. thus. 14. Matito. 1997 at about 10:30 or 11:00 in the evening you could not possibly [be] the stand and competently performed by the trial judge who. Well-entrenched declarations on is the rule witness that the is matter best of assigning most values to A: Yes. he could not have seen what had happened inside the house where the deceased was brutally attacked. sir. 44 People v. 423 SCRA 617. Witness. x x x x Q: These persons that I made mention to you since when have you known them? A: For almost ten (10) years. 632. sir. sir. do you know a person with such name? A: Yes. sir. accorded by the trial court to the latter testimonies court had of witnesses. Tolentino Q: Mr. Piedad. 441 Phil. 43 People v. 468 Phil. conduct and position to discriminate between truth and falsehood. 626. 818. appellate courts will not disturb the credence. sir. unlike appellate magistrates. sir.44 In the instant case. 380 SCRA 110. 128 Page People vs. 838-839. Q: And because of that length of time mistaken as to their identity? A: Yes. 502-503 (2002). can weigh such testimony in light of the declarant’s demeanor. 625 (2004). x x x x Q: When you heard somebody called you on that occasion. 114 (2002). Q: Will you please tell us what is that incident that you recalled? A: There was somebody that called me. do you know a certain Jesus Trinidad y Maravilla? . 24. x x x x Q: On August 29. Serrano.43 Thus. 393 SCRA 488. 690 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED thereof.incompetent to testify on matters relating to what was done to the late Josita Novelo because he was tied from the waist down to the door outside the house.

He could not have been mistaken as to the identity of the appellants since. Q: Who? A: Emelio Tolentino. Q: Did you recognize who held your hand? A: Yes. Bea’s identification of the assailants was corroborated by Ricardo Basila and _______________ 45 TSN. sir. sir. 46 TSN. p. Q: You said ‚them‛. 14. pp. Their faces were illuminated by the flashlight when witness Antonio Bea focused the same in their direction. sir. sir. sir. 10 August 1998. 22-31. he has known them personally for ten (10) years already. wearing bonnet and their faces were exposed to the light. sir. A: He kicked me. Q: How did you recognize him to be Emelio Tolentino? A: When I focused the light. I saw them because of the light.45 Cross-examination: Q: Who was the person who held you? A: Emelio Tolentino. 8 September 1998. sir. x x x x Q: Mr. how many were they? A: Jesus Trinidad. x x x x Q: Nang oras na iyon sino pa ang nakita mo kung mayroon man? A: Jesus Trinidad. 546. Witness. Q: Who kicked you in particular? A: Jesus Trinidad. FEBRUARY 26.46 The identification of witness Antonio Bea of the perpetrators of the crimes evinces factual truth of what really occurred on that fateful night. Tolentino Q: And what happened next after you were pulled outside your house? A: I am (sic) telling him I have no fault. at that time. 692 129 Page Q: Who else if any? A: Arnel Trinidad. Q: What happened after you told them you have (sic) no fault? . what happened next after Emelio Tolentino held your hand? VOL. Emelio Tolentino and Arnel Trinidad.x x x x Q: x x x [W]hat happened next? A: Somebody hold (sic) my hand sir. Also. 2008 691 People vs.

viz. Jesus Trinidad shot Josita Novelo. sir. Q: After they have shot Josita Novelo. what did they do next? A: They get (sic) out. Although Antonio Bea was tied at the door outside the house of Josita Novelo. because they are holding the other end of the rope. x x x x Q: From the place you were tied did you see Josita Novelo? A: Yes. Tolentino A: Suddenly. where you at that time? A: I was with them sir. Q: That door where you exited? A: Yes. 130 Page Q: And while you were tied on that occasion what happened to Josita Novelo? A: They are asking Josita Novelo where was it placed? . if you have seen? A: On the left cheek which exited at the back of her head.‛ Q: Who in particular was mauling Josita Novelo? A: Jesus Trinidad and Arnel Trinidad. Jesus Trinidad and Emelio Tolentino saw Antonio Novelo. sir. if any? A: I cannot hear the reply of Josita Novelo because they are mauling her or ‚binubugbog nila. Q: What happened after Josita Novelo was mauled by these two you mentioned? VOL. Q: Where was she hit. what was he doing? A: He is outside guarding me. sir. 2008 693 People vs.SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Witness. Q: And what did they do to you afterwards? A: They tied me at the door. sir. 546. he declared with clarity the circumstances leading to the killing of Josita and his near-death experience. FEBRUARY 26. Q: Do you know what were they asking? x x x x Q: Did you hear the reply of Josita Novelo. Tolentino Antionio Novelo who testified that they likewise suffered violent acts from the malefactors during the incident. sir.: Q: x x x Mr. sir. sir. where were you when you said you went out of the house let’s go back to the situation wherein you entered the house of Josita Novelo in one door and then you exited on the other and there you said the other two. Q: What about Emelio Tolentino. Q: Did you see where Josita Novelo was hit? A: Yes.

appellants argue that in the stabbing of Antonio Bea. sir. what did he do if any? A: Emelio Tolentino entered the house and then slashed the face of Josita Novelo. they should have been liable only for attempted murder and not frustrated murder since the prosecution failed to prove. x x x x Q: So in other words from the time you were untied you walked A: Emelio Tolentino. and Emelio Tolentino went inside the house and put an X mark on the face of that dead woman. Q: And what did they do after untying you? A: They passed through the prensa and stabbed me. Q: Saan? Sa kanan o kaliwa? A: Sa kaliwa. Q: Mr. Court: Anong ginamit? Nakita mo? A: Jungle bolo. witness. x x x x Q: How many times were you stabbed on that occasion? A: Four times. Witness. and stabbed me. x x x x Q: Now. Mr. sir. you said that after Josita Novelo was shot by Jesus Trinidad. such testimony is entitled to full faith and credit.e.47 The foregoing testimony can only be told by a person who had really witnessed the incident and had been subjected to personal violence from the perpetrators. sir. who was ahead of you. All these tend to dispel any doubt that witness Bea would have concocted the whole story. Furthermore. Anent the third issue. sir. sir. Q: Were your hands still tied? A: Yes. autopsy result and the physical examination of the corpse of the victim. po. The nature of the wound of the deceased was affirmed by the medical experts to be a result of a gunshot wound. Bea’s testimony jibed with the physical evidence. sir. The location of the wounds found on Josita Novelo’s face as described by witness Bea was consistent with the documentary evidence. Q: When you walked. if any? . sa paa lang. 694 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. what happened next? A: They untied me.. hence. sir. photographs. The prosecution successfully established beyond reasonable doubt that the appellants and their cohorts killed Josita Novelo. i.x x x x Q: What about Emelio Tolentino. Tolentino Q: What about Tolentino who was ahead of you what was he doing? A: He has a jungle bolo sir. due to its failure 131 Page towards that ‘prensa’ for about three (3) meters? A: Yes. you said you were untied is it (sic) not? A: Yes.

13 April 2007. Likewise. x x x. in assessing the testimonial evidence of the prosecution. 53 Rollo.53 In fact. FEBRUARY 26. 16. 168827. testified that he recognized the accused because their voices are very familiar to him being neighbors and he had known the accused for a long time. 2008 695 People vs. The victim was hospitalized for two months because of these injuries. crime accused persuade the Court. on cross-examination. p. Court of Appeals. x x x x Witness Antonio Bea testified that accused Jesus Trinidad and Emelio Tolentino are known to him for almost ten (10) years x x x. 10 August 1998. 195. G. that the injury suffered by the victim was fatal. 51-76.to present the attending physician. 50 Id. the offender is said to have performed all the acts of execution if the wound inflicted on the victim is mortal and could cause the death of the victim without medical intervention or 132 attendance.R. x x x x The identification of an accused through his voice is acceptable. 521 SCRA 176. 52 Id. made this appropriate observation: ‚In the instant Antonio the cases. the victim showed the scars in his abdomen. particulary if the witness knows the accused personally. Page sustained four stab wounds inflicted by Emelio Tolentino which caused .52 In the instant case. _______________ consummate the crime. the as corroborative Basila and perpetrators testimonies Antonio of the of prosecution positively satisfactorily offender while passing _______________ witnesses. Tolentino through reason the of the subjective phase. However.51 In homicide cases. of He causes did all that of is necessary the will of to the identifying Ricardo the Novelo. 546. 49 Id. the crime was not consummated by intervention independent offender. at the trial. 48 Martinez v. 47 TSN. the complete. No. A crime is frustrated when the offender has performed all the acts of execution which should result in the consummation of the crime.50 Nothing interrupted damage to the victim’s abdomen resulting in massive blood loss. VOL. The trial court. pp.48 The offender crime. witness Antonio Novelo. Bea. the prosecution established that Antonio Bea 51 Id. All these tend to show the seriousness of the wounds suffered by the victim and which would have caused his death had it not been for the timely medical intervention.49 has passed the subjective crime is phase in the commission of the the Subjectively.

The essence of treachery is a deliberate and sudden attack. 118912. 370 Phil. They also make an issue of the statement of Bea during the cross-examination wherein he made mention that a gun was poked at him. 57 Id. 98-0260 by appreciating qualifying circumstance treachery generic aggravating circumstances of nighttime and dwelling. suddenly Trinidad held her. VOL. 2008 697 People vs. affording the hapless. 546. 430 SCRA 40. No. Thereafter. 554-555. Molina. Tolentino The sound of the voice of a person is an acceptable means of 54 Records. said findings are generally conclusive and binding upon this Court. unarmed and unsuspecting victim no chance to resist or to escape. The settled rule is that when the trial court’s findings have been affirmed by the appellate court. 980258 the for the killing of Josita of Novelo and frustrated and murder for the assault of Antonio Bea in Criminal Case No. 55 People v.56 Accuracy in accounts had never been applied as a standard to which the credibility of witnesses are tested since it is undeniable that human memory is fickle and prone to the stresses of emotions rather testimony. FEBRUARY 26.59 What is decisive is that the victim defend himself/herself or to retaliate. Jesus Trinidad shot the helpless victim on the cheek. These inconsistencies are very trivial and insignificant. 546.‛54 Worth stressing is that the Court of Appeals affirmed the findings of the RTC. such as appellants the latter’s identified inconsistent statements witness declaration that he was a friend of Jesus Trinidad which is contradictory to his earlier testimony the he got mad at Jesus Trinidad four months prior to the incident. 311 SCRA 517. Without warning. 56 People (1999). Minor treachery in the killing of Josita Novelo and in the stabbing of Antonio inconsistencies do not warrant rejection of the entire testimony nor the reversal of judgment. 803-804. The Bea. Said attack was so sudden and unexpected that the Page .60 In the killing called of Josita her. Castillo. In an effort to exculpate themselves of from the Bea charges. 526 identification where it is established that the witness and the accused knew each other personally and closely for a number of years. and the passage of for time. which declaration is missing in the direct examination. the the victim went was at her home when Jesus RTC is correct in appreciating the qualifying circumstance of v.R. 28 May 2004.696 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Jesus Trinidad and Arnel Trinidad mauled Josita Novelo.55 We find no cogent reason to veer away from their findings.58 execution Frontal of the attack attack can made be it treacherous impossible when for the it is sudden to and unexpected and the victim is unarmed. G. Tolentino The RTC convicted the appellants of murder in Criminal Case No.57 it Witness Bea’s of inconsistencies a rehearsed enhance truthfulness erases suspicion 133 _______________ someone When victim outside. 50. Novelo. pp.

355 Phil. 60 People v. 445.64 The aggravating circumstance of nighttime in both cases was improperly appreciated by the RTC. 63 Id. 367 Phil. and the assailants were walking along the dike.victim had not been given the opportunity to defend herself or repel the aggression. cannot be appreciated in Criminal Case No. the crime was committed inside the house of the He deceased goes to victim. 307 SCRA 591. When the crime is committed in the dwelling of the offended party and the latter has not given provocation. aggravating Rules circumstances must be alleged in the information and proved otherwise. 90.61 Here. Although the crime was committed at nighttime. 107. 377 Phil. Tolentino perpetrators took advantage of it. 230. 607 (1999). Also affirmed is the ruling of the RTC appreciating the presence of the generic aggravating circumstance of dwelling in Criminal Case No. 698 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. 546. 168. VOL. Tolentino tim could not put up a defense as the attack was swift and he was not in the position to repel the same since his hands were tied. 2008 699 People vs. Belaro. She was unarmed when she was attacked. While Bea. 319 SCRA 422. 407. Dwelling house is to considered hurt him aggravating or do him primarily because of the sanctity of privacy the law accords to human abode. 464. 293 SCRA 411. Casitas. that the Rule 10 same of was the not alleged Revised in the of information. even if proved but not alleged in the information. 429 (1998).62 who another’s wrong is more guilty than he who offends him elsewhere. dwelling may be appreciated as an aggravating circumstance. Jr. Pidoy. There must be proof that this 58 People v.63 was intentionally sought to ensure the commission of the crime and that the _______________ 61 People v. the same shall not be considered by the Court in the imposition of the proper penalty on the accused. 397 SCRA 382. 445 (2003). Emelio Tolentino unexpectedly stabbed the victim four times. Evidence shows that Josita Novelo was killed in her own house. 438-439 Page 134 . 62 People (1999). The stabbing of Antonio Bea was also attended with treachery. 980258. Nighttime is considered an aggravating circumstance only when it is sought to prevent the accused from being recognized or to ensure their escape. 98-0260 considering Section 9. there is no evidence that the appellants and their companions Phil. FEBRUARY 26. 221. 427. The vic_______________ Dwelling. all these circumstances indicate that the assault on the victim was treacherous. 453 Phil. 150. Indeed. Prades. Under Court. Paraiso. 59 Id.. 405 SCRA 339. however. 398 v. 348 (2003). 64 People v. whose hands were tied behind his back.

Tolentino on current jurisprudence.took advantage of nighttime or that nighttime facilitated the commission of the crime.000. when death occurs due to a crime. (5) attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation.R.R. the the prosecution crime successfully by the established the presence of the qualifying circumstance of treachery in killing Novelo. 980258. 9346. Tubongbanua. which is death. (3) moral damages. Salome. 31 August 2006. of the passage of Republic Act No. which is reclusion temporal. 31 August 2006. 440. however. penalty imposed should be in its maximum. The Court of Appeals modified the penalty to 8 years of prision mayor as minimum to 14 years and 8 months of reclusion temporal as maximum. the maximum of the indeterminate penalty should be taken from reclusion temporal. 171271. as in this case.70 Article 2230 of the Civil Code states that exemplary damages may be imposed when the crime was committed with one or more aggravating circumstances.66 Thus. 742. 98-060. the RTC imposed upon the appellants the penalty of reclusion perpetua for the crime of frustrated murder.000.72 Reclusion temporal has a range of 12 years and 1 day to 20 years. Proceeding now to the appropriate penalty. With the aggravating circumstance dwelling mitigating circumstance. . and (6) interest. In Criminal Case No.00 in view of the violent death of the victim. G. the imposition of the death penalty has been prohibited. (4) exemplary damages. Based _______________ of parole under the Indeterminate Sentence 66 People v. Applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law.00 in favor of the heirs of Josita Novelo as civil indemnity.00 for exemplary damages is proper. No.71 To deter future similar transgressions. the Court finds that an award of P25. The Court of Appeals reduced the award of civil indemnity to P50. the following may be recovered: (1) civil indemnity ex delicto for the death of the victim. 500 SCRA 659. Paraiso. and committed the appellants is murder in accordance with Article 248. 98-0258 should be reduced to reclusion perpetua.68 The RTC awarded P75. This does not require allegation and proof of the emotional suffering of the heirs. 700 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. 676. the penalty imposed upon appellants in Criminal case No. Civil indemnity is mandatory and granted to the heirs of the victim without need of proof other than the commission of the crime. paragraph 2 of the Revised Penal Code.00. entitled ‚An Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty in the Philippines. in Criminal Case No. 169077.69 The RTC also correctly awarded moral damages in the amount of P50.00 in favor of the heirs of Josita Novelo is in order. Under Article 61. the penalty of frustrated murder is one degree lower than reclusion perpetua to death.000. p.‛ which was signed into law on 24 June 2006. without eligibility Law. the RTC award of civil indemnity ex delicto of P75.000. G.65 In view. (2) actual or compensatory damages. 68 People v. the it must of of be Josita borne in mind With no that this. 500 SCRA 727. 67 Id.67 As to damages. the penalty for the crime taking into account any 135 Page 65 People v. in proper cases. No. supra note 62 at p.000. 465.

this Court deems it prudent to award P20.78 WHEREFORE. 11 May 2007. 546. serious anxiety. Nonetheless. Although there was no testimony on the moral damages that he sustained. 134. 431 (2003). 77 Id. and similar injury. 167-168. Tolentino indeterminate prison term of eight (8) years and 1 day of prision mayor as minimum.modifying circumstances in the commission of the crime. VOL. the Decision of the Court of Appeals dated 08 November 2006 in CA-G. the prosecution failed to present any receipt to substantiate Antonio Bea’s hospitalization expenses. 28 March 2003. 170471. Court of Appeals. 407 SCRA 406.77 serious This qualifying of damage and generic. Since there is no modifying circumstance in the commission of the frustrated murder. fright. No. 116224-27. As to the award of actual damages. 134. 73 Id. intended P25. 523 SCRA 118. 702 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.R. supra note 48. 70 People v. 2008 701 People vs. 455 Phil. No. 83. Ibañez.00.000.R. the medical sustained certificate issued by the hospital indicated that Antonio Bea serious stab injuries inflicted by appellants. Tolentino rights of an injured or a punishment for those guilty of outrageous conduct.00 as temperate damages since it cannot be denied that he suffered pecuniary the award in the amount of P25. Code. Buban. 133.75 Moreover.000.R. CR-HC No.000. The award of civil indemnity in the amount of P30. to fourteen (14) years. G. an _______________ loss.000.000.00 is in order. FEBRUARY 26. When crime committed circumstance. Antonio is also entitled to moral damages which this Court hereby awards in the amount of P40. 8 months and 1 day of reclusion temporal as maximum74 may be considered reasonable for the frustrated murder under the facts of this case. 400 SCRA 67. 71 People v. as vindication undue sufferings and wanton invasion of the _______________ v. moral shock. G. 00880 finding appellants guilty of the crime of murder and sentencing them to suffer the penalty of reclusion Page 136 . Caraig.00 as exemplary damages is also in order considering of that the either kind crime a was attended is or is a by the an to qualifying with award serve of an of as circumstance aggravating New Civil to treachery.76 Finally. 69 People v. It is sufficient basis to award moral damages as ordinary human experience and common sense dictate that such wounds inflicted on Antonio Bea would naturally cause physical suffering. in light of the fact that Antonio was actually hospitalized and operated upon.73 The minimum of the indeterminate penalty shall be taken from the full range of prision mayor which is one degree lower than reclusion temporal. supra note 69 at p. Buban.00 as exemplary damages is justified under Article 2230 of the deterrent wrong-doings. 72 Martinez v.

amount P50. Same.—A dismissal of a criminal case by the grant of demurrer to temperate P25. Austria-Martinez. Same. Sarmiento Trucking Corporation. Ynares-Santiago (Chairperson). 98-0258. Right to be Informed. (Ong vs. vs. In a prosecution for rape. Rape.000.P. exemplary P20. Criminal Law.000. which is a ground for a motion to quash. Tabio G..perpetua in Criminal Case. difficult to prove and even more difficult to disprove.000.000. Same. JJ. the movant shall be deemed to have waived the right to present evidence.* THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES.00 moral 156 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. (2) In Criminal Case No. 342 SCRA 372 [2000]) If a demurrer to evidence is granted but on appeal the order of have been traditionally guided by three settled principles in the dismissal is reversed. G. Judgment affirmed with modifications.—The Court also observes that there is duplicity of the offenses charged in the information. to 14 years.000.00 as damages. But the failure of appellant to interpose an objection on this ground constitutes waiver. is hereby AFFIRMED with the modifications: (1) and In Criminal Case No. Tolentino. 98-0260.00 damages and P25. If a 137 Page ——o0o—— _______________ [People vs. No. for the crime of Frustrated Murder. Pleadings and Practice. the testimony of the complainant must be scrutinized with utmost caution. appellants are sentenced to suffer an indeterminate penalty from 6 years and 1 day of prision mayor as minimum. Both qualifying and aggravating circumstances must be alleged with specificity in the information.00 appellant. Three (3) separate acts of rape were charged in one information only. No. February 6.00 and indemnity. Notes. concur.R. appellee. (FGU Insurance Corporation vs. Criminal Procedure.000.—Our courts evidence is not appealable as the accused would thereby be placed in double jeopardy. 546 SCRA 671(2008)] . Nachura and Reyes. 98-0258.000. P75. the complainant’s candor is the single most important issue. 386 SCRA 312 [2002]) prosecution of the crime of rape: (1) an accusation for rape is easy to make. and (3) the evidence of the prosecution must stand on its own merits and cannot draw strength from the weakness of the evidence of the defense. appellants are ordered to pay jointly severally as the civil heirs of the victim the Josita of Novelo the amount as of indemnity.00 damages. People. Failure of the accused to interpose an objection on the ground of duplicity of the offenses charged in the information constitutes waiver. as appellants civil as are ordered to pay jointly and severally the victim Antonio Bea the amount P40. 8 months and 1 day of of reclusion as temporal moral as maximum. Principles in the Prosecution of Rape. In addition. 2008.00 representing exemplary damages.—Rule 110 of the 2000 Rules of Criminal Procedure is clear and unequivocal that both qualifying and aggravating circumstances must be alleged with specificity in the information. 179477. JIMMY TABIO. (2) in view of the intrinsic nature of the crime. damages P30. SO ORDERED.

This civil indemnity is awarded for each and every count of rape.00 for simple rape.000. AAA’s testimony is distinctively clear. retardation AAA’s does as not impair the lends unequivocal mental deficiency Same. 2008 157 People vs. Same. Witnesses.00 in all. 544. Same. such that one found guilty of two counts of simple rape would be liable to pay P50. Tabio tion that appellant raped her.complainant’s testimony meets the test of credibility.000. frank and definite without any pretension or hint of a concocted story despite her low intelligence as can be gleaned from her answers in the direct examination. Damages. Same. Each and every charge of rape is a separate and distinct crime so that each of them should be proven beyond reasonable doubt.00). Her bare statement that appellant repeated what he had done to her the first time is inadequate to establish beyond reasonable doubt the alleged second and third rapes. Same.00 for each count.000.—AAA never wavered in her asser_______________ Certainly. VOL. or P100. 157 been committed. Same.000. Mental Retardates. Civil indemnity is awarded for each and every count of rape. appellant repeated what he did in the first rape would not be enough to warrant the conclusion that the second and third rape had indeed * SECOND DIVISION.000. or P100.00 in all.000. manner of by to AAA The the prosecution the effect crime that must was the sufficient detail which greater credence to the victim’s testimony for someone as feeble-minded and guileless as her could not speak so tenaciously and explicitly on the details of the rape if she has not in fact suffered such crime at the hands of the accused. Tabio Page .—The civil indemnity awarded to the victims of qualified rape shall not be less than seventy-five thousand pesos (P75. Mental deficiency lends every charge of rape is a separate and distinct crime so that each of them should be proven beyond reasonable doubt. Whether or not he raped her is the fact in issue which the court must determine demonstrate perpetrated. credibility of The her fact of her mental testimony. the accused may be convicted on the sole basis thereof. FEBRUARY 6.00 for each count. The quantum of evidence in criminal cases requires more than that. and P50. The victim’s bare statement that accused repeated what he had done to her the first time is inadequate to establish beyond reasonable doubt the alleged second and third rapes—each and 158 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. based in on the the evidence the testimony offered. 158 greater credence to her testimony for someone feeble-minded and guileless as her could not speak so tenaciously and explicitly on the details of the rape if she has not in fact suffered such crime at the 138 hands of the appellant. Same.—AAA’s testimony on these two later rapes was overly generalized and lacked many specific details on how they were committed. such that one found guilty of two counts of simple rape would be liable to pay P50.

Branch 96. The Solicitor General for appellee. 502 SCRA 419. G. J.: 2 The complete address of the victim is withheld to protect her privacy. A doctor6 who had trained with the National Center for Mental Health testified that he had examined AAA and concluded that while she was 23 years old at the time of the rape. He pressed a knife on AAA’s breast. The victim. 159 Appellant Jimmy Tabio was charged with three (3) counts of rape in a single Information. Tabio sions again entered her home and repeated the same acts on her. Public Attorney’s Office for appellant.8 Appellant testified in his own behalf. 167693. AAA was able to recognize the 139 appellant as her house was lighted with a gas lamp. 19 September 2006. No. He inserted his penis in her vagina and ejaculated. AAA testified that one night in June 2002.R.APPEAL from a decision of the Court of Appeals. she nonetheless had the mental age of a six-year old child. feloniously and willfully. Jaime Bautista. AAA further testified that the appellant on two succeeding occa_______________ Page .11 tried to corroborate his alibi through their own testimony. did then and there. Cabalquinto. FEBRUARY 6. 1 Record.7 AAA’s mother and grand aunt also testified on her mental retardation and the occurrences after she had reported the rape to them. 4 Presided by Judge Corazon Soluren. 1-2. 2002 in [Aurora2] the said accused. 544. have carnal their knowledge house and of mentally during retarded AAA3 was by means of force advantage of and to intimidation three times all committed while the victim was alone inside nighttime which taken facilitate the commission of the crime. and mounted her as she was seated on a bed. while she was alone in her home. Aurora.425-426. appel-lant entered her house. denying that he had raped AAA and offering as alibi that he was up in the mountain at the time of the rape. fondled her breast.1 the accusatory portion of which reads as follows: ‚That between June 13.4 Trial on the merits ensued. unlawfully.5 Other witnesses for the prosecution presented testimony concerning AAA’s mental condition. 2002 and June 28. removed her clothing. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. CONTRARY TO LAW. 2008 159 People vs. undressed himself. See People v. pp.‛ Appellant pleaded not guilty on arraignment before the Regional Trial VOL.9 Appellant’s wife10 and his brother-in-law. Court (RTC) of Baler. 3 The real name of the victim is withheld to protect her privacy. TINGA.

10.000. the RTC handed down a decision finding the Court issued a Resolution13 transferring the case to the Court of Appeals for appropriate action.00 exemplary damages. 19-A. paragraph 1 (d) and penalized under Article 266-B. defined in Article 266-A. 17 December 2002. Roman Balangue. 10 TSN 3 June 2003.12 The records of the case were thereafter forwarded to this Court on automatic review. The RTC also ordered appel-lant to pay P75.16 The case is again before us for our final disposition. 13 February 2003. 160 14 CA Rollo. 7 Id. and concurred in by Associate Justices Jose Reyes.000. resolved We quote the first error in the appellant’s appellate appellant guilty and imposing the penalty of death on three (3) counts of qualified rape.14 The Court of Appeals15 affirmed with modification the decision of the trial court. pp. 14767887. 656. Jr. and Myrna Dimaranan Vidal. pp.On 25 November 2003. G. Jr. 3-7.00 of all three (3) as counts for simple rape only and not qualified rape.00 as civil indemnity and P50. 2-5. pp. whether the RTC erred in finding him guilty of all three (3) counts of rape despite the alleged failure of the prosecution to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt. 7 July 2004. On 7 June 2005. Tabio .000. and TSN. 20 January 2003. 8 TSN. It also reduced the and added an award of P25. The information should have warranted a judgment of guilt only with approval court when it said: _______________ 13 Pursuant to the case of People v. 2-6.00 as civil indemnity. 2-8. 11-16. p. pp.00 as moral damages. pp. to wit: whether the RTC erred in finding him guilty of qualified rape with the penalty of death in view of the prosecution’s failure to allege a qualifying circumstance in the information. p. Nos. Appel-lant had assigned three (3) errors in his appeal initially passed upon by the Court of Appeals. of not Appeals qualified properly rape. at p. and whether the RTC erred in awarding P75. pp. 11 TSN 8 May 2003. Efren Mateo.R. 12 Records. 6 Dr. 2-6. The appellate court found appellant guilty civil indemnity to P50.. 9 TSN 7 May 2003. 433 SCRA 640. 17 December 2002.000. 160 favor. _______________ 5 TSN. 3-8. The for Court simple. TSN. pp. 15 Through the decision dated 23 January 2007 penned by Associate Justice Jose Sabio.000. 109. paragraph 6 (10) of the Revised Penal Code. 140 Page SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.

Limio. 162 circumstances. Penalties. Designation of the offense. 19 People v. however.16 Rollo. 8. Article 266-B (10) of the Revised Penal Code could not. thus. be applied and the supreme penalty of death could not be validly imposed. It of the complainant the commission bears circumstances alleged specificity and/or physical handicap of the offended party at the time of the commission of the crime. G. p. Rule 11018 of the 2000 Rules of Criminal Procedure to be requires with both qualifying in and the aggravating information. x x x x SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. knowledge by the offender of the mental disability. 20 Rollo. FEBRUARY 6. Tabio ‚Under Article 266-B(10)17 of the Revised Penal Code. aver the acts or omissions constituting the offense. emotional disorder. the information merely states that the appellant had carnal knowledge with a mentally retarded complainant. 2008 161 People vs.19 In the case at bench. be made If there is no designation of the offense. It does not state at that the appellant time of knew of the mental of the disability crime. SEC. Nos.‛20 _______________ 141 162 17 Art. 429 SCRA 597.R. or physical handicap at the time of the commission of the rape is the qualifying circumstance that sanctions the imposition of the death penalty. 148804-06. 21. Cause of the accusation. 9.—The complaint or information shall state the designation of the offense given by the statute. (Emphasis supplied) 18 SEC. Tabio Page . statute shall to the section or subsection of the stressing that the rules now require that the qualifying circumstance that sanctions the imposition of the death penalty should be specifically stated in the information. 27 May 2004. 8-9. 544. 615. emotional disorder VOL. 161 The death penalty with shall of also the be imposed following if the crime or of rape is committed any aggravating qualifying circumstances: x x x 10) When the offender knew of the mental disability. and specify its qualifying and aggravating reference punishing it. pp.—The acts or omissions complaint of as constituting the offense and the qualifying and aggravating circumstances must be stated in ordinary and concise language and not necessarily in the language used in the statute but in terms sufficient to enable a person of common understanding to know what offense is being charged as well as its qualifying and aggravating circumstances and for the court to pronounce judgment. 266-B.

Sec.23 We turn to the second issue. While the Court affirms that appellant is guilty of simple rape. shall be deemed a waiver of any objections except those based on the grounds provided for in paragraphs (a). were not proven beyond reasonable doubt. which is a ground for a motion to quash. (g).—A except complaint the or law PROS. But the failure of appellant to interpose an objection on this ground constitutes waiver.25 We have thoroughly examined AAA’s testimony and found nothing that would cast doubt on the credibility of her account of the first rape. RONQUILLO: to the witness information charge offense.Rule 110 of the 2000 Rules of Criminal Procedure is clear and 23 Rule 117.—The accused may move to quash the x x x Q single Did you have any occasion to see Jimmy inside your house in June 2002? 142 complaint or information on any of the following grounds: x x x x (f) That more than one offense is charged except when a Page punishment for various offenses is prescribed by law. Duplicity only one of the offense. The Court also observes that there is duplicity21 of the offenses ground therefor. difficult to prove and even more difficult to disprove. 2008 163 People vs. 544. evidence of the prosecution must stand on its own merits and cannot important issue. 9. 163 charged in the information. Sec. Our courts have been traditionally guided by three settled principles in the prosecution of the crime of rape: (1) an accusation for rape is easy to make. we nonetheless find that only the first rape was conclusively proven. FEBRUARY 6. when prescribes a single punishment for various offenses. The second and third rapes of which appellant was charged and found guilty. If a complainant’s testimony meets the test of credibility. (2) in view of the intrinsic be nature of the with crime. the accused may be convicted on the sole basis thereof. and (i) of section 3 of this Rule. VOL.22 Three (3) separate acts of rape were charged in one information only. Tabio strength from for the weakness of the evidence of the defense. 13. utmost the testimony and of (3) the the complainant draw _______________ must scrutinized caution. (b). must Sec. Grounds. Failure to move to quash or to allege any unequivocal that both qualifying and aggravating circumstances must be alleged with specificity in the information.—The failure of the accused to assert any ground of a motion to quash before he pleads to the complaint or information. 22 Rule 117.24 the complainant’s candor is the single In a most prosecution rape. 3. either because he did not file a motion to quash or failed to allege the same in said motion. x x x x . We quote the pertinent portion of her testimony: 21 Rule 110.

268 SCRA 246 (1997). You said that you have your clothes on. 24 People v. p. 952-953. citing People v. 388 Phil. 954. What did he do there? A He fondled my breast. sir. COURT: to the witness be ashamed. Q Did you have your clothes on when Jimmy Tabio went to your house? A Yes. x x x Q So you are now without clothes because you said Jimmy removed your clothes. at p.A Yes. if any? . Sir. What did he do after removing your clothes? _______________ x x x Q You said that Jimmy went inside your house. 943. 280. De Guzman y Pascual. 333 SCRA 269. Sir. Sir.. 25 Id. Sir. Q What time was that? A Night time. Abad. A He removed my dress. When Q Q Don’t Page Jimmy saw you what did he do with your clothes. 164 164 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. 279 (2000). Tabio A x x x 143 He placed himself on top of me.

Q Do you know what Jimmy did with his penis? A Yes. Q What did he do with his penis? A He placed his penis to my vagina. Sir. Q You said that he placed himself on top of you. (Witness indicated the upper part of her left breast) Q Jimmy was in our house. Sir. what else did he do? A Page . Sir. Q On what part of your body did he press the knife? A Here. Sir. Q 144 What breast? A else did Jimmy do aside from pressing the knife near your After Jimmy inserted his penis in your vagina. What did Jimmy do while he was on top of you? A He pressed a knife on me. Sir. RONQUILLO: to the witness Q When Jimmy placed himself on top of you was he dressed or nude? A He was naked.Was he standing when Jimmy mounted on you? A I was sitting. Sir. Q Do you know what penis is? A Yes. PROS. Sir. Q What did you feel when Jimmy did that? A I felt pain.

Sir. Sir. 544. FEBRUARY 6. is it not? A Yes. Sir.Nothing more. Sir. 2008 165 People vs. Sir. Q How were you able to see Jimmy while it was night time? 145 Page vagina? A There was some kind of milk. Q Can you demonstrate his movement while he was on top of you? A (Witness indicated the movement by moving her body.) x x x PROS. RONQUILLO: to the witness 165 COURT: to the witness Q Where? A In my vagina. Tabio Q What else did you notice while the penis of Jimmy was in your Yes. . Sir. Q Did he move while he was on top of you? A Yes. RONQUILLO: to the witness Q Why did you notice that? What did you do? A I watched my vagina. PROS. Q Now. Sir. Q That is why you saw that thing which looks like milk? A VOL. it was night time when Jimmy went into your house.

27 _______________ vague account of his whereabouts at the time the crime was committed as well as with respect to the distance of his whereabouts from the locus criminis. x x x‛29 However. To merit approbation. pp. AAA’s testimony is distinctively clear.R. People v. 16 August 2000.g. G. Lubong.28 We have meticulously reviewed the records and found no justification to deviate from the findings of fact of the trial court that— ‚Accused’s alibi that he was in the mountain gathering woods during the period accused when took [AAA] the was witness raped stand. frank and definite without any pretension or hint of a concocted story despite her low intelligence as can be gleaned from her answers in the direct examination. 134608. deserves he gave no an consideration. The fact of her mental retardation AAA’s does mental not impair the credibility greater of her unequivocal to her testimony.26 (Emphasis supplied. 105556.R. Toralba. 800. which weak are merely self-serving it is evidence. San Juan. No. When the and confused testimony for someone as feeble-minded and guileless as her could not speak so tenaciously and explicitly on the details of the rape if she has not in fact suffered such crime at the hands of the appellant. denials Alibi is and an alibi. x x x In the instant case. 27 See People v. the accused must adduce clear and convincing evidence that he was in a place other than the situs criminis at the time the crime was committed. easy to cannot prevail over the positive. 329 SCRA 52 (2000) and People v. The only evidence presented to prove answers the to two two other leading charges questions were if AAA’s monosyllabic affirmative appellant 146 Page 693. carnal knowledge and force or intimidation. 17 December 2002. Sir.A I have a light. 4 April 1997. Sir. evasive. we find that the prosecution failed to establish beyond reasonable doubt the elements of the offense e. Q What kind of light was that? A Gas l[a]mp. as to the alleged second and third rape. consistent and straightforward testimony inherently defense because fabricate and highly unreliable.) AAA never wavered in her assertion that appellant raped her. 414 Phil. 793. No. 166 . Tipay. People v. Ducta. deficiency lends credence 166 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. G. Tabio Appellant’s of AAA. 270 SCRA allegedly was is less than half a kilometer (200 meters) which could be negotiated in less than an hour. People v.. 338 SCRA 272. 2-6. the distance of the place where the accused 26 TSN. such that it was physically impossible for him to have been at the scene of the crime when it was committed. Cabingas. 362 SCRA 491. 332 SCRA 672 (2000). Accused’s wife and his brother-in-law tried to corroborate his (accused’s) testimony that he was in the mountain during the commission of rape but to no avail. 329 SCRA 21 (2000). 497 (2001) citing People v.

Sir. he entered your house. 2008 167 People vs.30 (Emphasis supplied) AAA’s testimony on these two later rapes was overly generalized and lacked time is many specific to details on how they were committed. 544. Q How about the third time? What did he do? 28 See People v. Did he repeat what he did during the first time? VOL. The quantum of evidence in criminal cases requires more than that. 429 SCRA 364. Certainly. We quote that only portion of _______________ A Yes. the testimony of AAA to the effect that the appellant repeated what he did in the first rape would not be enough to warrant the conclusion that the second and third rape had indeed been committed. No.repeated during the second and third times he was in her house what he had done during the first time. 167 A He has a knife. Sir. Whether or not he raped her is the fact in issue which the court must determine31 based on the evidence offered. . G. A Yes. Sir. 134203. to wit: PROS. 107. The prosecution must demonstrate in sufficient detail the manner by which the crime was perpetrated. p. What did he do during the second time? A He entered our house. Did he repeat what he did during the first time. Each and every charge of rape is a separate and distinct crime so that each of them should be proven beyond reasonable doubt. Sir. doubt Her bare alleged statement that appellant repeated what he had done to her the first inadequate establish beyond reasonable the second and third rapes. RONQUILLO: to the witness Q You said that Jimmy went to your house three times. FEBRUARY 6.R. 27 May 2004. _______________ 147 Page Q Yes. Q Yes. Tabio AAA’s testimony relating to the second and third alleged rapes. Ejandra. 379. 29 Records.

on the bases of the evidence adduced by the prosecution... Tabio (P75. which are uncorroborated by any other evidence.00). 33 Id. at p.000. because appellant is guilty of one count of simple rape.36 Still. and for the eight counts of rape committed May June July admitted appellants less than seventy-five thousand pesos _______________ 32 346 Phil. 1994.35 This civil indemnity is awarded for each and every count of rape. 168 As to the civil liability of appellant.7.000. however.00 only. We note that the appellate court implicitly awarded P50. not three counts of rape. We cannot agree with the trial court that appellant is guilty of 183 counts of rape because. 497. 544.000.00 for each count. On that score alone.30 TSN. 1996 ed.00 exemplary damages.‛33 (Emphasis supplied) 148 Page We must uphold the primacy of the presumption of innocence in favor of the accused when the evidence at hand falls short of the quantum required to support conviction. appellant can be convicted only of the two rapes in committed and in November.00 in all. Such award would have been improper for a conviction for three counts of simple rape. the indefinite testimonial evidence complainant was week decidedly inadequate grossly insufficient to establish the guilt of appellant therefor with the required quantum of evidence. FEBRUARY 6. 169 VOL. aforementioned letter of August 24. 348. as correctly asserted by the defense. pp. as well as the additional award of P25. 475. and on [sic] 16. such that one found guilty of two counts of simple rape would be liable to pay P50. Garcia. as we affirm the reduction by the appellate court of the civil indemnity to P50. The civil indemnity awarded to the victims of qualified rape shall not be 168 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.000. or P100. So much of such indefinite imputations of rape.000. 481-482. 2008 169 People vs. .34 and P50. each and every charge of rape is a separate and that distinct crime so that raped each every of them is should be proven beyond and reasonable doubt. considering our conclusion that he is only guilty of one.RICARDO. 31 FRANCISCO. but on rather different premises.000.00 as civil indemnity for all three counts of simple rape. fall within this category. 17 December 2002. in 1994 as testified to by complainant. 1990 1994 and as on July 21. p. EVIDENCE.32 wherein the appellant was charged with 183 counts of rape. P50. 281 SCRA 463 (1997). Tabio In the case of People v.000.00 still emerges as the appropriate amount of civil indemnity.00 for simple rape. p.000. we held that: ‚x x x Be that as it may.

P50. (People vs. CR-H. JJ.R.. 335 (1998). G. rape and Appellant is found GUILTY of only ONE count of simple ACQUITTED of the 170 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Professional Services. 34 People v. Bernaldez. Jr.00 as exemplary damages.00 as _______________ qualified rape. Quisumbing (Chairperson). De los Santos. Carpio.R. Inc. 357 Phil. 36 (1998). 01301 is AFFIRMED WITH MODIFICATION.C. Judgment count of affirmed simple with rape modification. 740. 394 SCRA 414. SO ORDERED..000.00 as exemplary damages by way of public example is also proper. 684. and acquitted appellant of the guilty other of two only (2) one counts (1) of TWO other counts of qualified rape. 544 SCRA 156(2008)] (2002).—There is no rule that rape can be committed only in seclusion. 502 SCRA 419. Cabalquinto. 630. 209-210. Notes. No. Appellant is sentenced to suffer the penalty reclusion perpetua. the latter being based on different jural foundations and assessed by the court in its sound discretion. 19 September 2006. 36 See People v. Pagsanjan. The appellate court’s award of P25. the decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. 294 SCRA 317. Victor. In rape cases. 296 SCRA 17.000. 355 Phil. 432 (People vs. Tabio.37 In this respect. as the case may be.38 WHEREFORE.In addition. the victim or heirs. 758. 17. 667. 354 Phil. can also recover moral damages pursuant to Article 2219 of the Civil Code. 383 SCRA 115-130 (2002). Villar. Perez. we agree with the appellate court in the award of P50. 195. No. 391 SCRA 38. Mendoza.00 as moral damages. 641. People v. 439 Phil. 322 SCRA 462 [2000]) ——o0o—— [People vs. 37 People v.000. 292 SCRA 186. 35. 435-436. 666. moral damages are awarded without need of proof other than the fact of rape because it is assumed that the victim has suffered moral injuries entitling her to such an award.000.000. vs. Bernaldez. 201 (1998). 48 (2002). People v. concur. Court of Appeals civil indemnity. 149 Page 38 People v. Carpio-Morales and Velasco. 687. 170 . 432 Phil. 322 SCRA 393 [2000]) Civil indemnity is mandatory upon the finding of the fact of rape. 35 See People v. 442 Phil.00 as moral damages and P25. and it is not to be considered as moral damages. 167693. and ordered to pay to the victim P50.

‛ accused-appellant. which opportunity is denied to the appellate courts.—Sexual crimes where the culprit denies culpability is actually a test of credibility. justify the the reversal when no of court the is trial generally facts court’s bound and assessments by the circumstances and are conclusions. The issue of credibility has. been settled by the Court as a question best addressed to the province of the trial court because of its unique position of having observed that elusive and incommunicable evidence of the witnesses’ deportment on the stand while testifying. Witnesses. 177756. 2008. Evidence. which opportunity is denied to the appellate courts. The rule finds an even more stringent application where the said findings are sustained by the Court of Appeals. time and again.G. Rape. Criminal Law. Absent any substantial reason which would findings. plaintiff-appellee. time and again. Page . reviewing former’s particularly significant 150 shown to have been overlooked or disregarded which when considered would have affected the outcome of the case. No. vs. March 3. The issue of credibility has. to the been settled of by the this trial Court court as a question of its best unique addressed province because position of having observed that elusive and incommunicable evidence of the witnesses’ deportment on the stand while testifying.* PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. Appeals.R. SALVADOR NIETO y CABALSE @ ‚ADOR.

And when the unwavering and forthright testimony of a rape victim is consistent with the medical findings. there . Lastly. In this to case. according Thus. even strengthen her claim of sexual violation by appellant. Dr. Same. Secondly. is sufficient basis to warrant a conclusion that the essential requisites of carnal knowledge have been established. Same. there is sufficient basis to warrant a conclusion that the essential requisites of carnal knowledge have been established. 151 shown that she had been motivated by any ill desire that would make her testify falsely against the accused. whether healed or fresh. Llamas. A mere denial. which. Denials. can scarcely overcome the positive declaration by the victim of the identity and involvement of appellant in the crimes attributed to him. this Court notes that the testimony given by AAA before the trial court can be characterized as categorical and straightforward.Same. Same. in order that alibi might prosper. without any strong _______________ evidence to support it. Same. She even demonstrated the sexual act by spreading her two legs and placing her finger to her vagina. The straightforward narration of AAA of what transpired. Same. And during her testimony. Firstly. it must also be shown that it would have been impossible for him to be anywhere within the vicinity of the crime scene. 512 It is an established jurisprudential rule that a mere denial. alibi and is the weakest to of all defenses. and undeserving of any weight in law. such defense is negative. Nieto accompanied malefactor. When Page testimony of a rape victim is consistent with the medical findings. it is not enough to prove that the accused has been somewhere else during the commission of the crime.—As can be gleaned from the records of this case. substantiated 512 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. * THIRD DIVISION. 513 the unwavering and forthright prosecution. all that the appellant stresses in his defense are denial and alibi. it as was the not convincing proof. she positively identified the appellant as the person who had raped her on the aforesaid dates. Same. are the best physical evidence of forcible defloration. medical with straightforward testimony of AAA. The defense of alibi is likewise unavailing. without any strong evidence to support it. Same. She was able to describe before the court a quo how she was ravished by the appellant on 30 December 1999 and 3 January 2000. findings resulted together showed from that AAA’s hymen had a day-old healed laceration at the 6 o’clock position.—In stark contrast to the simple but clear declarations of AAA. can scarcely overcome the positive declaration by the victim of the identity and involvement of appellant in the crimes attributed to him. alibi is unacceptable when there is a positive identification of the accused by a credible witness. The straightforward narration of AAA of what transpired. self-serving. by sealed her the categorical case for identification the of appellant Further. the Dr. Same. Same. said sexual the intercourse. sealed the case for the prosecution. accompanied by her categorical identification of appellant as the malefactor.—Hymenal lacerations. Llamas’s could medical have findings. Unless because it by is easy clear to and concoct difficult disprove. Same.

00 for each count of rape proper. Nieto Same. and to indemnify AAA in the amount of P50. 2 Penned by Judge Modesto C. rape her Case victim to law requires need automatic of proof award because to moral of moral the City. Damages.00 award exemplary moral damages modification P50. P. this Court finds the award of moral damages by the appellate court in the amount of P50. finding herein appellant Salvador Nieto y Cabalse @ ‚Ador‛ guilty beyond reasonable _______________ 1 Penned Justices by Hakim Associate S.R. CR-HC No. which affirmed the Decision2 dated 15 September 2000 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Urdaneta Page . pp. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court.000. 8353.000. Nieto doubt of months. Jr. this Court affirms the award of P50. Justice Andres and B. Rollo. appellant was charged in two separate Informations with the crime of rape. Juanson.00 in each case as civil indemnity given by the trial court to the victim. Thus.000. 2008 513 People vs. U-10586 and No. This award is separate and distinct from civil indemnity. 514 damages injuries without from nature of the crime it can be assumed that she has suffered moral entitling such award. Same. U-10587. Wilfredo L.—The award of civil indemnity to the rape victim is mandatory upon the finding of the fact of rape. 02006. CA Rollo.00. Cruz for accused-appellant.000. MARCH 3. Thus. On 13 March 2000.VOL. J. to a Same.00 indemnity for an P20. 3-20. as civil the and crime of simple him in rape in both case cases to committed the against of the to AAA.3 a mental retardate with a mental age of five years and three sentencing and each as of suffer penalty with reclusion perpetua. with Associate Castillo Abdulwahid Mariflor Punzalan concurring.—With respect damages. 547. as defined and penalized under Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code. 514 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. which case law also automatically awards upon proof of the commission of the crime by the offender. The Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee. Reyes. Same. as amended by Republic Act No. case law requires automatic award of moral damages to a rape victim without need of proof because from the nature of the crime it can be assumed that she has suffered moral injuries entitling her to such award. APPEAL from a decision of the Court of Appeals.: For review is the Decision1 dated 31 October 2006 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. Award of civil indemnity to the rape victim is mandatory upon the finding of the fact of rape. in Criminal Cases No. 25-34.000. Same. pp.4 additional damages amounting 152 CHICO-NAZARIO. Branch 46.

44 of Republic Act No.‛ ‚BBB.‛ Page 153 515 VOL. No. did then and there wilfully (sic). MARCH 3.R. the above-named accused by means of force.committed against AAA on 30 December 1999 and 3 January 2000. unlawfully and feloniously have sexual intercourse with said AAA. and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. 7610. without her consent and against her will. 9262.‛ The Supreme Court of took note of the legal mandate on the utmost and confidentiality proceedings involving violence against women The undersigned accuses SALVADOR NIETO Y CABALSE.‛ of the crime of RAPE.‛ ‚CCC. CONTRARY 8353. 04-10-11-SC. 502 SCRA 419).A. Revised Penal Code. 40 of A. 515 People vs. No. committed as follows: That on or about [30 December 1999] at Brgy. shall of their immediate disclosed.‛ and so on. alias ‚Ador. Sec. unlawfully and feloniously mental have age of sexual five intercourse (5) years with and AAA. three a (3) mentally prejudice. the above-named accused by means of force. 29 of Republic Act No. a mentally retardate with a mental age of five (5) years and three (3) months. and Sec.‛6 to Art. and family That on or about [3 January 2000] at Brgy. brought and carried at the ricefield AAA. retardate with months. 547. 167693. U-10586 respectively. [Province of] XXX and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. [Province of] XXX. The of such victims. 2004. to her damage and members other than the accused. XXX Street. XXX. without her consent and against her will. Nieto Criminal Case No.‛ of the crime of RAPE.A. wherein this Court resolved to withhold the real name of the victim-survivor and to use fictitious initials instead to represent her in its decisions. 19 September 2006. U-10587 to Art. shall appear as ‚AAA. committed as follows: 3 This is pursuant to the ruling of this Court in People v. the those personal of their circumstances immediate names of the or victims-survivors household or any other not be information tending to establish or compromise their identities. as amended by R. Cabalquinto (G. City of XXX. 335. [Municipality of] XXX. known as Rule on Violence Against Women and Their Children effective November 15. to her damage and prejudice. xxx. 4 Otherwise known as ‚The Anti-Rape Law of 1997. otherwise known as Special Protection of Children Against Child Abuse. CONTRARY 8353. The two Informations read as follows: _______________ ‚The undersigned accuses SALVADO NIETO alias ‚Ador. as amended by R. 335. as well as family members.‛5 Criminal Case No. Addresses shall appear as ‚XXX‛ as in ‚No. otherwise known as Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004. did then and there wilfully (sic). children set forth in Sec. Exploitation and Discrimination Act.M. 2008 . [Municipality of] xxx. XXX District. Likewise. Revised Penal Code.

8 VOL. SPO3 Maximiano Balelo. while she was alone at the house of her grandmother. the herein the appellant.. Province of XXX.9 result. appellant fooled her and pulled her out of their house and brought her to the nearby farmland. 547. She then recognized also their that somebody According to be to AAA. pleaded NOT GUILTY to the charges against him. Initially. 516 Again. and Mental Ruby Health at Philippine Medico-Legal Martinez Officer Pozorrubio 7 TSN. at pp. Thereafter. up to the present. she started to live with her grandmother in Barangay XXX. while AAA’s grandmother was in Manila. somebody entered their house. at pp. Pangasinan at that time. the victim. Her parents BBB and CCC were already separated. MARCH 3. He likewise undressed her. Community the Hospital. As a part. She resisted.7 Since the separation. 4. Baguio-Benguet Chapter. Chief Investigator of the Pozorrubio Bell. 8 TSN. Nieto nesses: AAA. assisted by counsel de In her testimony. who was in Malokiat. the appellant went to their house. who approached was her. Dr. 4-7. Municipality of XXX.. Philippine of the National the Police (PNP). 23 May 2000. AAA stated that on the night of 30 December 1999.. but the appellant was much stronger than 516 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. appellant struck up a conversation with her. AAA only reached Grade II because of her illnesses. p. trial presented by the prosecution to prove its allegations are the testimonies of the following wit- neighbor. When the appellant learned that AAA’s grandmother went to Manila and that only the two of them were in the said house. Inc. oficio. 517 _______________ psychologist Association. When they were both naked. 10. the appellant began to force her to have sexual intercourse with him. on the night of 3 January 2000. 9 Id. 3. 2008 517 Page . p. 11-12. AAA was already 24 years old when the alleged first rape incident 154 happened. In the farmland. she felt so much pain in her private 5 CA Rollo. 24 May 2000. the appellant inserted his penis into her vagina. the appellant removed all his clothes. Thereafter. The pieces of evidence April 2000. appellant. p.When arraigned on 17 on the merits ensued. 6 Id. the appellant _______________ started to fondle her breasts. Francisco Llamas.

which at the was 6:00 o’clock into position. Nieto head and neck. five times. 4.People vs. He AAA’s vagina. 16 May 2000. They was also went to the hospital by in Dr.18 Ruby Martinez Bell. 13 TSN. at pp. pp. Draw-aPerson Test. 16 May 2000. Nieto her.11 AAA. 15 Records. 2-5. and brother. 10-13. Urdaneta. at pp. appellant succeeded in inserting his penis into her vagina. 14 TSN. by one Arsenio Corpuz when she was still living in Cuyapo. Bender-Gestalt Test and Vineyard Social Maturity Scale and Page 155 physical injury on AAA’s . He recorded the rape incidents report in the Police Blotter under Entry No. 16 TSN. went to the police station to report the rape incidents that happened to her on 30 December 1999 and 3 January 2000. was also presented by the prosecution to prove the _______________ allegation that AAA is indeed a mental retardate. AAA disclosed that she had been where AAA physically examined 10 Id.17 He also reduced his findings into writing as evidenced by the Medico-Legal Report.10 AAA revealed her harrowing experience in the hands of the appellant to her sister. On the basis of such examination. despite her resistance. her sister was brave enough to tell their mother what had happened to AAA. He admitted that AAA was brought to him for investigation on 6 January 2000. 7. Llamas.12 During her cross-examination.. accompanied by her sister and aunt. 7-10. hence. 11 Id. AAA also had a healed laceration on her hymen penis. the Medico-Legal Officer of Pozorrubio Community Hospital affirmed that he physically examined AAA on 6 January 2000. at pp.13 SPO3 Maximiano Balelo corroborated the testimony of AAA. EEE. AAA told him that she was sexually abused by the appellant on two occasions. 24 May 2000. he said that he did not find any 518 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. p. He noticed. that there were some hyperemic or red areas on AAA’s breasts.. however. He took the statements of AAA and those of AAA’s sister and aunt.16 Dr.14 The statements15 of AAA.. 11-13. pp. Nueva Ecija. but. Francisco Llamas. Her brother cried when she told him about her ordeal. p. The said psychologist declared that she gave AAA a Stanford-Binet Test. DDD. 518 previously raped. 12 Id. Francisco Pangasinan. the psychologist who examined19 AAA to determine her mental condition. possibly an erect inserted further AAA’s healed laceration was already a day old. concluded He that the stated said that laceration could have been caused by a blunt object. 02858. The first rape incident happened on 30 December 1999 and the second was on 3 January 2000. 5-6. her sister and aunt were reduced into writing.

however. The testimonies of Calixto Parocha. id. After that. it presented the testimony of the following witnesses to prove that it was impossible for the appellant to have raped AAA on 30 December 1999 and 3 January 2000. he was at the barangay dance party acting as a guard because he was a witnesses are irrelevant _______________ member of the barangay Civilian Volunteers Organization.Q.m. Nueva Ecija. and stayed there until 11:00 p.she even attempted to give AAA a Sentence Completion Test. pp. Based on the result of the psychological tests. in order to compute the cost of the materials for the construction of the terrace and main door of their house. and herein appellant. 18 Records. 2008 . the father of the victim.20 On the part of the defense. She stated that on 3 January 2000. and they stayed there until 3:00 a. 15 May 2000. he admitted that the place where the dance party was held was only one kilometer away from the place where the rape incident happened. She further stated that on the basis of the different tests she gave to AAA. namely: Calixto Parocha. terms. she noticed that AAA was unable to comprehend those tests. CCC. which was allegedly committed by Arsenio Corpuz.m. of 31 December 1999. the brother of do much in terms of reasoning and definition of abstract 519 People vs. in his cross-examination. the brother of the appellant. the appellant went home.m. Municipality of XXX. 19 As evidenced by the Psychological Report prepared by Ruby Martinez Bell. MARCH 3. Nieto the appellant. she concluded that AAA belonged to the severely mentally retarded category with an Intelligence Quotient (I. the appellant went to their house at around 6:00 p. Dominador Nieto.21 Obviously. He claimed that the appellant was also at the said party because he was the barangay electrician and he was there to fix the lightings.m. Although she can recognize some common objects. 20 TSN.m. 4-6. Leticia Nieto. The aforesaid witnesses admitted that their statements before the trial court were given in connection with the rape incident that happened in Cuyapo. The appellant also had dinner with them at around 8:00 p. the sister-in-law of the appellant. at pp. However. p. 17 May 2000. Ernesto Salvatierra and CCC focused on the rape incident that happened to AAA while she was still in Cuyapo.) of 30 and an I. 547. she cannot.Q. She likewise stated that their house was only 20 meters away 17 TSN. 3-4. Nueva of Ecija. 519 156 Page VOL. 8-10. these and not on the matters insofar that as transpired this case in is Barangay XXX. 7. According to Dominador Nieto. Province of XXX. the testimonies concerned. level equivalent to that of a five-year-and-three-monthold child. And from that period.22 Leticia Nieto testified that she is the wife of Melecio Nieto. but AAA could not do it as she could not understand the same. Ernesto Salvatierra. on the night of 30 December 1999. there was never an instance that the appellant left the dance party. pp.. Both of them went there at about 7:00 p.

Further. 14 August 2000. 19 June 2000. JUDGMENT is hereby rendered CONVICTING beyond 157 husband of Leticia Nieto. maintained dance hall. of 31 December 1999. MARCH 3. he was designated to install the sound system and the lights to be used at the dance party. pp. he admitted that the house of his brother was more than 100 meters away from the house of the complainant and the house of the latter was about 80 meters away from his house. it was impossible for him to have committed the offenses 1999. TSN. 7-9. 3-6. the RTC rendered the assailed Decision on 15 September 2000. pp. 14 June 2000. 1999 30 the The 3 23 TSN. Nieto from the house of the appellant and 100 meters away from the house of the complainant. pp. finding the appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of simple rape in both cases. 36. By walking. 5 June 2000. and then he went home._______________ During his cross-examination. He even ate dinner there at around 8:00 p. Nieto ‚WHEREFORE. 2008 521 People vs. 22 TSN. at pp. He went there at around 7:00 p. He stayed there until 11:00 p. thus. on 3 January 2000. 547. AAA He presented on 30 by the defense. pp.25 After trial. He was denied he was was the final witness seen with. 2-8.m. to talk about the cost of the materials to be used in constructing the terrace and main door of his brother’s house. 520 520 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. pp. 2-5.m. The decretal portion of the aforesaid Decision reads. He stated that he went to his brother’s house at around 6:00 p.m. and stayed there until 3:00 a. 3-6. December barangay he barangay Being electrician. His brother is Melecio Nieto.23 Appellant alibi. 24 TSN. he affirmed that the dance hall where he was on 30 December 1999 was only a kilometer away from the house of the complainant. TSN.. 25 Id.m. 521 justification offered by him by way of exculpation was both denial and having charged at the December that on and January 2000. 6 June 2000. the VOL. thus: _______________ 21 TSN.m. he testified that he was at his brother’s house located about 20 meters away from his house. 5-6. he could reach the said house in about an hour. Likewise.24 reasonable doubt SALVADOR NIETO of the crime of Simple Rape and the Court sentences him: Page . A tricycle could reach the said house as it was near the road.

70. AAA belonged child. 433 SCRA 640.32 severely only mentally issue left retarded for this category with an I. the appellate court forwarded to this Court the records of this case. 7 July 2004. the appellant’s lone assignment of error was. this Court finds no reason to reverse the judgment of the trial court and the appellate court. Nieto The appellant filed a Notice of Appeal.000. U-10587. CASE NO.31 this Court resolved to accept the present case and notify the parties that they may file their respective supplemental briefs. of Urdaneta City dated 15 September 2000 is hereby AFFIRMED with a modification P50.00 as exemplary damages.Q.000. CRIM. 20. p. to suffer the penalty of Reclusion 27 G. the Page 26 CA Rollo. Mateo. rendered a Decision on 31 October 2006. Bell.00 in each case.‛26 The records of this case were originally transmitted before this Court on appeal.00 as exemplary damages.00 and to pay another sum of P20. .27 the records were transferred to the Court of Appeals for appropriate action and disposition. the court a quo gravely erred in finding appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of rape. if they so desired. The dispositive portion of the Decision reads: ‚WHEREFORE. the Court of Appeals. p. filed before the appellate court. There appears to be no controversy that the victim in this case is a mental Martinez retardate.‛29 158 _______________ mental a psychological to the report series of psychological tests she gave to AAA revealed that the latter is mental retardate. to indemnify AAA the sum of P50. 28 CA Rollo. Nos. Branch 46. 147678-87. to suffer the penalty of Reclusion Perpetua.R. the condition. Both the Office of the Solicitor General and the appellant manifested that they were adopting their respective briefs dated 30 May 2002 and 24 January 2002. of 30 and an I. 522 Perpetua.00 that an each in additional both award instances of moral is damages amounting to to the hereby awarded complainant. as their supplemental briefs. CASE NO. On 11 July 2007. In his brief. 34. Such and fact by the was proven by the AAA testimony to she of Ruby her The psychologist who examined determine prepared.Q. taking into consideration the 522 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. pp. After a meticulous review of the records of the present case. U-10586.28 Accordingly.000.000. respectively.00 and to pay another sum of P20. 2.1. level equivalent to that of a five-year-and-three-month-old Thus. CRIM. Pursuant to People v. assignment of error stated by the appellant in his Appellant’s Brief and after a thorough study of the records of the case. 29 Rollo.30 In view thereof.000. to indemnify AAA the sum of P50.000. affirming the conviction of the appellant for two counts of simple rape with the modification for an additional award of moral damages in the amount of P50. the Decision of the Regional Trial Court.

am I correct? A: Yes. 2008 523 People vs. sir. MARCH 3. Arsenio Corpuz raped you also while you were in Cuyapo. Nueva Ecija? A: When I was already in [Brgy. sir. 547. 9.Court’s resolution is the credibility of the victim’s testimony as regards the fact of sexual congress between her and the appellant. as there are serious and inexplicable discrepancies in material details in the said testimony. sir. What happened there is another thing. at p. he raped me. Q: In other words. ATTY. thus: A: The brother of the wife of my father fooled me also. 31 Id. Q: Did you mother come to know what Jolin-jolin did to you in Cuyapo. will you tell us what is that another thing? . 23. your Honor. your Honor. 32 Records. xxx]. 523 A: Yes. there is doubt as to its credibility. The appellant averred that the testimony of AAA should be disregarded. am I correct? 159 Page A: I lived in Cuyapo. hence. Nueva Ecija? on the same day or on different days? A: Different dates but successive nights. sir. will you tell us of your experience while you were in Cuyapo. at p. The discrepancies referred to by the appellant were embodied in the following testimony of the victim during her cross-examination regarding an alleged prior rape incident with another person. x x x x Q: How many times did Jolin-jolin or Arsenio Corpuz fuck you? A: Five times.. COURT: Who raped you? A: Jolin-jolin raped me. 21. p. x x x x Q: [The appellant] is a relative of your father. Nueva Ecija? _______________ 30 Id. Q: Who is Jolin-jolin? A: The husband of the sister of my father. sir. sir. was it VOL. Nieto Q: Madam Witness.. Q: That five times that Jolin-jolin or Arsenio Corpuz fucked you. FLORENDO: You are referring to Arsenio Corpuz. Q: You said that what happened there is another thing.

Sexual crimes where the culprit denies culpability is actually a test of credibility. G. As can be gleaned from the records of this case. particularly when no significant facts and circumstances are shown to have been overlooked or disregarded which when considered would have affected the outcome of the case. sir. The issue of credibility has. sir. the reviewing court is generally bound by the former’s findings. MARCH 3.) The aforesaid argument raised by the appellant is untenable. 547. 525 VOL. 24 May 2000. 35 People v. 45. time and again. 2008 525 People vs. accompanied by her categorical identification of Page . She even demonstrated the sexual act by spreading her because happened Cuyapo. sir. this Court notes that the testimony given by AAA before the trial court can be characterized as categorical and straightforward. pp. Nueva Ecija.35 you [the appellant] of what did not really to fuck you in you you said is he that In the present case. She was able to describe before the court a quo how she was ravished by the appellant on 30 December 1999 and 3 January 2000. she positively identified the appellant as the person who had raped her on the aforesaid dates. 371 SCRA 567. 6-9. _______________ 33 TSN. Nieto two legs and placing her finger to her vagina.A: My grandparents are the relatives of [the appellant] and they are neighbors.37 The straightforward narration of AAA of what transpired. you cannot forget that anymore? A: I always remember it. 515 SCRA 537. 50. no cogent reason can be appreciated to warrant a departure from the findings of the trial court with respect to the assessment of AAA’s testimony. 34 People v. Q: That is why whenever you see [the appellant] you remember what happened to you in Cuyapo? A: I can also remember what he did to me.R. 172019. which opportunity is denied to the appellate courts. Q: Eventhough fucked correct? A: Yes.36 And during her 160 testimony. 572 (2001). Glabo.33 (Emphases supplied. Absent any substantial reason which would justify the reversal of the trial court’s assessments and conclusions. 547. 12 February 2007.34 The rule finds an even more stringent application where the said findings are sustained by the Court of Appeals. No. 423 Phil. Q: And because of what Jolin-jolin did to you in Cuyapo. been settled by this Court as a question best addressed to the province of the trial court because of its unique position of having observed that elusive and incommunicable evidence of the witnesses’ deportment on the stand while testifying. Cabugatan. sir.

Nueva Ecija. Limio. also known as 161 38 People v.. G. hymenal testimony there is lacerations.R. if she were not motivated solely by the desire to have the culprit apprehended and punished to avenge her honor and to condemn a grave injustice to her. it is understandable why AAA gave the apparently conflicting examination.R.appellant Further. Moreover. Moreover.) It bears emphasis that in the victim’s testimony during her cross‚Jolin- examination. according to Dr. 551. 338 SCRA 13. medical even findings. though. are of a rape victim to is consistent a with the the best medical that the 526 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Page . 4-5. not shown age of sealed that a she the had case been for the prosecution. and especially one of tender age. when she testified as regards the rape incident that had happened to her in Brgy. she What is that important [appellant] is had that during her direct with testified sexual intercourse her. having it as the malefactor. jolin. 429 SCRA 597. Llamas’s medical findings showed that AAA’s hymen had a day-old healed laceration at the 6 o’clock position.. 543. her For private no woman. She emphasized. 27 May 2004. Llamas. the of said AAA. XXX. 148804-06. No. the mental five-year-and-three-month-old would even bolster her credibility as a witness considering that a victim at such tender age would not publicly admit that she had been criminally abused story of and ravished unless allow an that was the of truth. Dr. in the in essential requisites of carnal knowledge have been established. could have resulted from sexual intercourse. 526 was motivated desire that would make her testify falsely against the accused.‛41 (Emphasis supplied.39 More so. Nieto Thus. Macapal. 155335. considering the mental age of the victim and the tenor of questions asked during _______________ the cross-examination. physical evidence of forcible defloration. if it rape indeed is not relevant (sic). 14 July 2005. strengthen together her claim with of the sexual straightforward violation by testimony appellant. Nos. practically only a girl. 610. answers. which. 37 Id. whether healed or fresh. As the Court of Appeals opined in its Decision. thus: ‚The Court notes case.‛ raped her five times at the time when she was still in Cuyapo. p. The that the prior alleged rape. Nueva Ecija. 39 People v. G. 20 (2000). 463 SCRA 387. that what happened in Cuyapo. 400. was ‚another thing. would concoct a defloration. at pp. Agravante. 392 Phil. She also affirmed that ‚Jolin-jolin‛ was a relative of her father.40 In this case. 23 May 2000. examination parts thereafter expose herself to a public trial.‛ On the other hand.38 by child any ill 40 People v. present previous occur cannot anyway prove that [appellant] did not rape AAA. 36 TSN. she admitted that Arsenio Corpuz. sufficient basis warrant conclusion The appellant cannot find protection in the discrepancies in the victim’s testimony during her cross-examination to relieve him from culpability. And when the unwavering and forthright findings. Jr. 10.

43 People v. Medios. Hence. Nieto and that she was just confused as to the identity of her assailant. can The scarcely defense overcome of alibi the is positive likewise declaration by the victim of the identity and involvement of appellant in crimes attributed him. Nos.44 Lastly. Dela Cruz. alibi is the weakest of all defenses.R. 527 prove that the accused has been somewhere else during the commission of the crime. The first rape incident was on 30 December 1999 and the second rape incident happened on 3 January 2000. 127. _______________ undeserving weight Secondly. As this Court previously stated. 29 November 2001. 11 July 2003. without any strong the evidence to support to it. 459 Phil. 528 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Page . in order that alibi might prosper. pp. unacceptable credible positive identification accused witness. any such in defense law.R. With the said testimony of the victim.42 unavailing. G. Firstly. province of XXX. it is not enough to 41 Rollo. it cannot be said that she only filed a case against the appellant because of what had happened to her in Cuyapo. it must also be shown _______________ VOL. 141162-63.43 is of negative. is by a and appellant who had raped her twice. 384 SCRA 453. 114. Her narration of the despite rape the incidents imagined was categorical in and her straightforward. Unless substantiated by clear and when convincing of is there a proof. because it is easy to concoct and difficult to disprove. She also said that the appellant was a relative of her grandparents. alibi the self-serving. 2008 527 People vs. 129. 528 testimony during her cross-examination. Nos. 412 SCRA 490. 547. all that the appellant stresses in his defense are denial and alibi. It is an established jurisprudential rule that a mere denial. it is beyond cavil of doubt that 162 the appellant was the real perpetrator of the crime of rape against AAA. Olaybar. this Court agrees in the findings of both the trial court and the appellate court that the testimony of AAA was credible and deserves full faith and credit.Municipality of XXX. she revealed that it was the In stark contrast to the simple but clear declarations of AAA. 44 People v. 19. Therefore. MARCH 3. 501 (2003). 463-464. discrepancies 42 People v. 371 SCRA 120. G. 132066-67. Nueva Ecija. 16. AAA positively identified the appellant as the person who had raped her on 30 December 1999 and 3 January 2000.

Because they were his close relatives. Leticia Nieto. he was tasked to set up the sound system and the lightings. he claimed to have been in the house of her brother to compute the cost of materials to be used in the construction of the terrace and main door in his brother’s house. Besides. 354 barangay electrician. Olaybar. as well as Dominador Nieto. was sufficient to convict the appellant. the appellant himself. the straightforward testimony of AAA. 458 Phil. 1014. 2008 529 People vs. . _______________ 45 People v. 412 SCRA 343. He avowed incident.People vs. dance the date of the first being rape the party because. Francisco Llamas. In sum. The testimonies of close relatives and friends are necessarily suspect and cannot prevail over the unequivocal declaration of the complaining witness. The award of civil indemnity to the rape victim is mandatory upon the finding of the fact of rape. 163 Page he could reach the house in about an hour. He likewise admitted that the house of his brother where he stayed until 11:00 p. Opeliña. we cannot give credence to their testimonies. 1001. the date of the second rape incident. Surprisingly. the appellant’s flimsy and self-serving defenses of denial and alibi were not able to destroy the truthfulness and the credibility of AAA’s testimony. And by walking. the appellant denied that he had raped AAA. supra note 42.50 Thus. as well as her unwavering and positive identification of her defiler and tormentor.m. that he on was the at 30 the December barangay 1999. The appellant even affirmed that a tricycle could reach the said house as it was near the road.47 convincing Therefore. the evidence that appellant failed it was to clear and physically impossible for him to be at the scene of the crime at the time of its commission. Nieto on 3 January 2000 was only more than 100 meters away from the house of the complainant and the house of the latter was only about 80 meters away establish by from his house. Thus. MARCH 3. Nieto that it would have been impossible for him to be anywhere within the vicinity of the crime scene. This Court notes that the witnesses who corroborated the testimony of the appellant that he was somewhere else during the commission of the rapes were his brother. 547. this Court him criminis during physically impossible aforementioned dates when the separate acts of rape were committed. Dominador Nieto. 529 v. this Court is convinced that the trial court and the appellate court correctly convicted the appellant of the crime of simple rape48 in both cases. which is punishable by reclusion perpetua.46 The appellant also failed for to to present be at convincing the locus proof that it was the VOL.49 As to the damages. 46 People (2003). corroborated by the medical findings of Dr. and sister-in-law.45 In the case at bar. admitted before the trial court that the place where the dance party was held on 30 December 1999 was only one kilometer away from the place where the rape incident happened. On 3 January 2000. Such claims of the appellant were corroborated by other defense witnesses.

CR-HC No. a mental retardate with a mental age equivalent to a five-year-and-three-month-old child.51 Court finds the award of moral damages by the appellate court in the amount of P50. Article 2230 of the New Civil Code provides: ‚Art.—Rape under paragraph 1 of the next preceding article shall be punished by reclusion perpetua. 416 Phil.000. 619-620 (2001)..) 50 People v.‛ In this case. Austria-Martinez. Alay-ay. and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua for each count. JJ.000. With respect to moral damages.—Rape is committed: 1) By a man who have carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the following circumstances: a) x x x. premises considered. SO ORDERED. 14 August 2000. Such damages are separate and distinct from fines and shall be paid to the offended party. 48 ART. 5-6. WHEREFORE. 266-A. Penalties. as it is not even alleged in the information. 80. b) When the offended party is deprived of reason or otherwise nature of the crime it can be assumed that she has suffered moral injuries entitling her to such award.affirms the award of P50. Nieto. This award is separate and distinct from proof civil of indemnity. (Id. the Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. 49 ART. In criminal offenses. (Revised Penal Code). Rape: When and How Committed. case law requires automatic award of moral damages to a rape victim without need of proof because from the 47 TSN. Nieto concur. Costs against appellant. Ynares-Santiago (Chairperson). there being no aggravating circumstance that can be considered. unconscious. upon this commission of the offender. As regards the award of exemplary damages.00 for each count of rape proper. the award of _______________ exemplary damages by the lower courts would have to be deleted.00 in each case as civil indemnity given by the trial court to the victim. 100-101. 266-B. exemplary damages as a part of the civil liability may be imposed when the crime was committed with one or more aggravating circumstances. 547 SCRA 511(2008)] . Page _______________ [People vs. 02006 dated 31 October 2006 finding herein appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of two counts of simple rape committed against AAA. 363 SCRA 603. 530 164 530 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. the which case law crime also by automatically the awards Thus. pp. 2230. Nachura and Reyes.R. is hereby AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that the amount of exemplary damages awarded by the lower courts is deleted for want of legal basis.

175833. This Court declared moral in People v.Same. JANUARY 29. being AAA’s uncle.—This Court is not persuaded by appellant’s contention that the lack of outcry. 94 Moreover. It is therefore enough that it produces fear—fear that if the victim does not yield to the lustful demands of the accused. VOL. Malicsi * SECOND DIVISION. Same. lack of tenacious resistance. 281 SCRA 463 (1997): is [R]ape is committed when intimidation is used on the victim and this includes the kind of intimidation on the age. No. Between the positive declarations of the prosecution witnesses and the negative statements of the accused.‛ Besides. EDWIN MALICSI. 543. appellant. January 29. Witnesses. Malicsi G. Same. Intimidation size and strength of the a relative and term. The intimidation must be viewed in the light of the victim’s perception and judgment at the time of rape and not by any hard-and-fast rule. appellee. the intimidation must be viewed in the light of the victim’s perception and judgment at the time of rape and not by any hard-andfast rule. Denial.R. Denial is a negative. Rape. their depending parties. _______________ 165 matters. the former deserve more credence. ill-motive to falsely testify and impute a serious crime against the appellant who is a Page . ‚Denial is a negative. relationship with each other. or coercion. 2008 93 People vs. First. Evidence. self-serving evidence which cannot be given greater weight than the testimony of credible witnesses who testified on affirmative matters. Second.—AAA’s testimony is entitled to great weight in contrast to appellant’s bare denials. These circumstances have led AAA to keep her ordeals in secret until her mother learned of the incidents from AAA’s cousin. It can be addressed to the mind as well. appel-lant had instilled fear upon AAA’s young mind during the sexual assaults by using a knife and threatening to kill her. neither AAA nor her family had any close relative. something would happen to her at the moment or thereafter. 2008. Criminal Law.* PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. appellant exercised moral ascendancy over AAA. vs. Garcia. self-serving evidence which cannot be given greater weight than the testimony of credible witnesses who testified on affirmative 94 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. and delay in reporting the incidents signify that the sexual encounters were consensual.

Civil indemnity in the amount of P50. CR-HC No. and Dr. Same. that is. Marlon dela Rosa (Dr. must be alleged in the Information.—We reduce the award of civil indemnity from P300. Relationship. dela Rosa). Moral damages are automatically granted to the rape victim without presentation of further proof other than the commission of the crime.: charged appellant with raping AAA. AAA’s mother. Qualifying Circumstances. appellant is the victim’s uncle and they are related within the third civil degree of affinity. finding appellant Edwin Malicsi guilty beyond reasonable doubt of four counts of rape. 2008 95 People vs. AAA chanced upon appellant who is her uncle. The fact that such relationship was proved will not justify the imposition of the death penalty and appellant cannot be convicted of qualified rape.000 to P200. 543.—The appellate court was correct in finding appellant guilty of four counts of simple rape.—We find that the Court of Appeals correctly imposed the penalty of reclusion perpetua on appel-lant. Branch 42. AAA was only 13 years old then. evening. who was then alleged to be 13 years old when she was raped for the first time and 15 years old during the succeeding rape incidents. Malicsi R E S O L U T I O N CARPIO. 166 AAA testified that sometime in December 1996 at 7 o’clock in the The Solicitor General for appellee. The house of AAA’s family is some 20 meters away from appellant’s house. her father asked her to buy wine from a store 10 meters away from their house. 01368. the prosecution commission of the crime. the examining physician.000 for each count of simple rape is automatically granted once the fact of rape is established. that is. her father Page . JANUARY 29. During the trial. Damages.000 in accordance with prevailing jurisprudence. APPEAL from a decision of the Court of Appeals. Oriental Mindoro. Pinamalayan. Appellant pleaded not guilty upon arraignment. Civil indemnity in the amount of P50. The facts are stated in the resolution of the Court. appellant is the victim’s uncle and they are related within the third civil degree of affinity. must be alleged in the Information. Civil Indemnity. The Court of Appeals affirmed with modification the decision of the Regional Trial Court.R. We have ruled that the special circumstance of relationship. The appellate court also correctly affirmed the award by the trial court of P200.Same. AAA. In four separate Informations dated 28 May 1998. the prosecution presented three witnesses namely. VOL. Moral damages are automatically granted to the rape victim without presentation of further proof other than the This is an appeal from the 18 August 2006 Decision1 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. Same. On her way home.000 for each count of simple rape is automatically granted once the fact of rape is established. Same. J.000 in moral damages. Public Attorney’s Office for appellant. The special 95 circumstance of relationship.

appellant caught up with her while she was gathering firewood. 2008 97 People vs. Appellant again threatened to kill her if she informed her parents about the incident.E. Malicsi AAA further testified that sometime in March 1998. When AAA confirmed appellant raped headquarters to file a complaint against appellant. went AAA’s to the cousin police witnessed the incident and informed AAA’s mother. with Associate Justices Bienvenido L. Appellant. On cross-examination. Appellant removed AAA’s shorts and underwear. her they vagina. AAA struggled to no avail. AAA felt pain. 543. AAA tried to retrieve the coconut but appellant forced her to lie on her back. her nephew informed her that he saw appellant rape AAA. AAA’s mother discussed the matter with her husband and they decided to report the rape incidents to the police authorities. AAA testified that she was thereafter brought to the doctor for physical examination.being the brother of appellant’s wife. her mother asked her to gather coconuts that have fallen off from the tree at the bamboo grove. Vagina: nulliparous introitus with old hymenal lacerations at 1º. . Jr. Appellant switched off AAA’s flashlight and embraced her. AAA went there because she knew appellant always carried a knife. Appellant ordered AAA to bend over.000 daughter. Again.3 167 Page AAA added that on 1 April 1998. Thereafter. Appellant followed her and grabbed one of the coconuts she was holding. dela Rosa added that based on his findings. 96 96 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. AAA’s mother alleged that appellant’s wife offered to settle the case for P10. Appellant placed AAA on his lap. JANUARY 29. Dr. dela Rosa stated that the hymenal lacerations were inflicted possibly by the insertion of a hard object. Malicsi ‚P.‛2 Dr. Reyes and Enrico A. AAA acceded because appellant threatened to kill her. Dr. 7º and 5º positions. dela Rosa testified that he examined AAA and executed a Medical but she refused the offer because of the dishonor to her 1 Penned by Associate Justice Jose C. Reyes. Sometime in April 1998. AAA confirmed to her mother that appellant raped her on different occasions. appellant forced her to lie on the ground and inserted his penis inside her vagina. AAA was again forced to lie on the ground and to appellant her mother inserted that his penis inside her. appellant ordered AAA to meet him at a banana grove. Lanzanas. concurring. AAA had lost her virginity. Out of fear. Appellant removed her underwear and inserted his penis inside her vagina. _______________ AAA alleged that three days later. Certificate with the following findings: 97 VOL. while poking a knife at AAA’s breast. Appellant warned AAA not to say anything to her parents. succeeded in inserting his penis inside her vagina. AAA’s mother testified that appellant is her brother-in-law.

she went home. The trial court gave credence to the testimonies of the prosecution witnesses.‛ While taking off her underwear. AAA also embraced and kissed him. AAA arrived while appellant was gathering ‚puso ng saging. After she left. Then. he sensed someone entering his house. ‚maghubo ka ng panty (take off your un-derwear). AAA gave her consent since were sweethearts. While AAA was lying in bed face upward. AAA they He was embraced each other. he arrived home 98 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. banana his AAA approached while her he him. Appellant claimed that AAA visits their house about thrice a week when his wife is not at home. and delay in reporting the rape charges to the authorities. Afterwards. Then. Appellant denied the accusations of rape and alleged that he and AAA were sweethearts and they mutually agreed to engage in sexual intercourse. lack of tenacious resistance. The trial court took note of the fact that AAA was barely 13 2 Records IV. from Manila and he told his wife to go to the market. AAA told him that they might be seen by her mother as the door was not closed. After the sexual act. The trial court disbelieved appellant’s testimony that they 168 Page 4 TSN. 6.6 Appellant also alleged they that in these three occasions. appellant asked her if she needed something but she replied negatively.8 The trial court was not persuaded by appellant’s defense that AAA was his girlfriend and that the sexual encounters were done with her consent due to the lack of outcry.5 Appellant alleged that the third sexual intercourse happened on 4 April 1998 at the banana plantation where they agreed to meet. Upon seeing that it was AAA. he slept. he did not have the opportunity to talk to AAA anymore. 5-8. AAA went home. Appellant claimed that sometime in December 1996. It happened _______________ embracing him. 98 . Then. 15 November 1999.The defense presented appellant as its only witness. 3 TSN. he told her. AAA lay on the banana leaves while he placed himself on top of her and inserted his penis inside her vagina. pp. After the sexual intercourse. Appellant then recounted the incidents of his sexual intercourse with AAA. p.‛ When she approached him. she had no violent reaction but merely closed her eyes when he inserted his penis inside her vagina. she went home. they embraced each other and removed their undergarments. they removed their undergarments. appellant also removed his briefs. AAA was merely looking at him while he was doing it. 8 September 1998. He held himself while her on hands top of and her.7 The trial court also noted that appellant was AAA’s uncle.4 Appellant contended that the second time they had sexual intercourse was in 1998 before AAA’s graduation. Malicsi at the banana grove. years old when the first rape took place while appellant was in his early 30’s. 5. He was urinating at the creek when he called her by on a the whistle. Appellant then stood up. Appellant attested that after he learned about the rape charges. held her hands and kissed her. Appellant and AAA then entered the room and he embraced and kissed her. AAA lay leaves placed and inserted penis inside vagina doing so. p. thus he exercised some sort of moral ascendancy over AAA.

at pp.000 as moral damages (P50. JANUARY 29. Malicsi Page . at p. 99 appellant guilty of four counts of qualified rape.000 for each count).. 12 Id. 21. 10-11. p... 23. it being sufficient that the coitus takes place against her will or that she yields to a genuine apprehension of great harm. at pp. Appellant merely relied on his own uncorroborated testimony. the trial court believed that the delay was due to the death force or threats made by that appel-lant would cause coupled the with to the victim’s for immaturity. 21-22. 8 Id. The fact that ap-pellant was holding a knife is suggestive of the intimidation victim conceal sometime the violation on her honor. Appel_______________ 9 Id.10 and credence to the incredulous testimonies of the prosecution witnesses especially AAA’s testimony.. there is no standard form of human behavioral response to a startling or frightful experience such as rape being perpetrated by the victim’s uncle. 10 Id. at p. 8-10. and to pay AAA P300.9 The trial court ruled that the lack of outcry and tenacious resistance did not make the sexual congress voluntary because being of tender age. at pp. the trial court rendered its decision. 11 Id. at pp. Moreover. 22-23. AAA did not possess discernment and was incapable of giving an intelligent consent to the sexual act. 7 CA Rollo. 24. and P200.12 On appeal. Furthermore. However. Malicsi were sweethearts because there was no sufficient proof to substantiate the alleged love relationship. The trial court sentenced appellant to suffer the penalty of death for each count of rape. finding 5 Id. the resistance on the part of the victim need not be carried out to the point of inviting death or physical injuries. The trial court added that a love affair is not a license for sexual intercourse. 6 Id.000 as civil indemnity (P75._______________ The trial court acknowledged that there was delay in reporting the rape incidents. 543.000 for each count). 100 169 100 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.. appellant contended that the trial court erred in giving weight VOL.11 On 8 October 2001.. 2008 99 People vs.

the Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s decision with modification. JANUARY 29. AAA had repeatedly testified during the trial that appellant warned her not to say anything to her parents and appellant threatened to kill her if she would tell them. which constitute only one special qualifying circumstance. more especially that appellant had not adduced any evidence that AAA or her family had any ill-motive to testify against him. . AAA’s fear for her life and safety made her conceal the fact that she was being molested by appellant.13 The Court of Appeals did not believe appellant’s ‚sweet-heart‛ defense because it was not supported by some documentary or other evidence of the relationship other than his bare assertions. The appellate court stated that it is even common for young girls to conceal for some time the assault against their virtue because of threats on their lives. the Court of Appeals agreed with appellant that the trial court erred in sentencing him to suffer the death penalty on four counts of qualified rape and that he should only be convicted of simple rape. Moreover. make their sexual intercourse voluntary because even a lover can be forced to engage in a sexual act against her will and consent. pp. This new law must be given retroactive incident. The minority of the victim and the offender’s relationship to the victim. 2008 101 People vs. Assuming arguendo that appellant and AAA were sweethearts. In this case. the penalty of reclusion perpetua should be imposed. there was a lapse of almost two years before AAA reported the rape incidents to the police authorities. must be alleged in the Information and proved with certainty. The Court of Appeals stated that AAA was a minor at the time of the commission of the crime and appellant was a family relative by affinity. 16-17. this relationship still does not. In its 18 August 2006 Decision. the Informations filed against appellant merely stated that he is the ‚uncle‛ of AAA. The Court of Appeals upheld the finding of the trial court on AAA’s credibility on the face of appel-lant’s bare denials. at pp. it was clearly established during the trial that AAA exerted efforts to free herself from appellant. The appellate court explained that this delay is not an indication 170 Page _______________ 13 Rollo.15 However. 543. 101 reasonable Appellant questioned imposition penalty considering the attendant circumstances of the case. finding appellant guilty of four counts of simple rape instead of qualified rape and reducing the penalty imposed to reclusion per-petua. The Court of Appeals further held that since Republic Act No.. The appellate court added that these circumstances belie appellant’s claim that AAA did not offer tenacious resistance. Such claim obviously deserves scant consideration. This is not the sufficient allegation required by law because the Information must allege that he is a relative by consanguinity or affinity within the third civil degree and the same should be proven during the trial. The Court of Appeals believed that the family relationship made AAA subject to appellant’s moral ascendancy.14 The Court of Appeals noted that from the time of the first rape VOL. The fact of AAA’s failure to disclose for two years that appellant molested her was not unexplained. AAA acceded to appellant’s sexual urges because appellant threatened to kill her and appellant actually poked a knife on her breast during the incidents.lant alleged that doubt. 934616 now prohibits the imposition of the death penalty. application because it is favorable to the accused. by itself. Malicsi of a false accusation. the prosecution also failed to prove the his guilt of beyond death 14 Id. 18-19.

18 People v. than the self-serving testimony evidence of which cannot be who weight credible witnesses VOL. neither AAA nor her family Page . 543. given ‚Denial greater is a negative. 17-19. 884. Fraga. Malicsi trial court that four counts of rape were clearly established by the 17 People v. AAA’s testimony is worthy of belief because she categorically pointed to appellant as the person who sexually abused her. 103 _______________ prosecution witnesses. Moreover. 330 SCRA 669. 688 (2000). 16 An Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty in the Philippines. pp. 386 Phil. G. the former deserve more credence. Malicsi testified on affirmative matters. The Court of Appeals was correct in affirming with modification the ruling of the _______________ had any ill-motive to falsely testify and impute a serious crime against the appellant who is a close relative. this appeal. 906.R. JANUARY 29. ‚sweetheart defense‛ appears to be a fabrication to exculpate himself from the rape he committed. No. Between the positive declarations of the prosecution witnesses and the negative statements of the accused. 20 CA Rollo. Appellant’s support documentary allegation he other or that they were to of sweethearts the is his barren claim The of by factual some because failed substantiate evidence relationship. Alarcon. 517 SCRA 778. misapprehended or misinterpreted. lack of tenacious resistance. 15 November 1999. at pp.20 First.Hence. The findings and observations of the trial court on the credibility of the prosecution witnesses are binding and conclusive on the appellate court unless some facts or circumstances of weight and substance have been overlooked.‛18 Besides.19 he failed to discharge the burden of proving the affirmative defense by clear and convincing evidence. 102 AAA in three separate occasions. We find the appeal without merit. 7 March 2007. 19 TSN. 2008 103 People vs. 174199. 4-11. and delay in reporting the incidents signify that the sexual encounters were consensual.17 which is not true in the present case. AAA’s testimony is entitled to great weight in contrast to appellant’s bare 171 denials. Although appellant admitted having carnal knowledge with 15 Id. 784. appellant exercised moral ascen102 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. 21-22. This Court is not persuaded by appellant’s contention that the lack of outcry.. pp.

Sabredo. Carpio-Morales.000 to subservient to appellant’s sexual desires. SO ORDERED. This Court declared in People v.R. Intimidation is a relative term. CR-HC No. depending on the age.000 in accordance with prevailing jurisprudence. 672 (2000). It can be addressed to the mind as well. Judgment affirmed with modification. damages automatically granted presentation of further proof other than the commission of the crime. Malicsi the death penalty and appellant cannot be convicted of qualified rape. correctly imposed court rape the penalty of reclusion Moral perpetua are The appellate to the also victim correctly without affirmed the award by the trial court of P200. These circumstances have led AAA to keep her ordeals in secret until her mother learned of the incidents from AAA’s cousin. Second. something would happen to her at the moment or thereafter.23 We find that the Court on of Appeals appellant. The appellate court was correct in finding appellant guilty of four counts of simple the rape. Moreover. 281 SCRA 463. the physical differences between appellant. This psychological predicament explains why AAA did not give any outcry or offer any resistance when appellant was raping her. 478 (1997). Quisumbing (Chairperson). and AAA. 682.000 for each count of simple rape is automatically granted once the fact of rape is established. 387 Phil. we reduce the award of civil indemnity from P300. 172 Page _______________ 21 346 Phil. must Information. the intimidation must be viewed in the light of the victim’s perception and judgment at the time of rape and not by any hard-and-fast rule. who was a man in his early 30’s then.25 Civil indemnity in the amount of P50. that is.. appellant is the victim’s uncle and they are related within affinity.24 However.dancy over AAA. JJ. concur. and their relationship with each other. . 104 104 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Garcia:21 ‚[R]ape is committed when intimidation is used on the victim and this includes the moral kind of intimidation or coercion. Jr. size and strength of the parties. afforded appellant the greater advantage such that no amount of resistance from AAA could have overcome the coercive physical force of appellant.‛ AAA’s tender age and appellant’s moral ascendancy made AAA 22 People v. 475..26 WHEREFORE.000 in moral damages. appellant had instilled fear upon AAA’s young mind during the sexual assaults by using a knife and threatening to kill her.000. Tinga and Velasco.22 The fact that such relationship was proved will not justify the imposition of P200. 493-494. Moreover. we AFFIRM the 18 August 2006 Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. It is therefore enough that it produces fear—fear that if the victim does not yield to the lustful demands of the accused. being AAA’s uncle. third We civil have degree ruled of that the special be circumstance alleged in of the relationship. a 13 and 15-year-old girl during the rape incidents. 331 SCRA 663. 692. 01368 finding appellant Edwin Malicsi guilty beyond reasonable doubt of four counts of simple rape with the MODIFICATION that the award of civil indemnity is reduced to P200.

543 SCRA 93(2008)] G. (c) where there is grave abuse of discretion.Note.—We are not a trier of facts. 2008. vs. Flores. Malicsi. April 22. (b) when the inference made is manifestly mistaken. Appeals. to reverse their findings. went beyond the issues of the case and the same is contrary to the admissions of both appellant and appellee. including the testimony of the witnesses. _______________ * THIRD DIVISION. 372 SCRA 421 [2001]) ——o0o—— [People vs. Exceptions. on We generally matter of rely the upon.* JAPAN AIRLINES. which are better equipped and have better opportunity to assess the evidence first-hand. petitioner. in making its findings. (e) when the findings of facts are conflicting. respondent. surmises or conjectures. We have repeatedly held that the findings of fact of the CA are final and conclusive and cannot be reviewed on appeal to the Supreme Court provided they are based on substantial evidence. lower and are bound by.R. 173 342 Page 342 . (d) when the judgment is based on a misapprehension of facts. as a rule. We have no jurisdiction. No. (People vs. the conclusions this courts. JESUS SIMANGAN. 170141. (f) when the CA.—The sweetheart defense does not necessarily preclude rape. Among the exceptions to this rule are: (a) when the conclusion is a finding grounded entirely on speculations. The findings of fact of the Court of Appeals are final and conclusive and cannot be reviewed on appeal to the Supreme Court provided they are based on substantial evidence. absurd or impossible.

novation. moral damages are not recoverable in actions for damages predicated on a breach of contract for it is not one of the items enumerated under Article 2219 of the Civil Code. without clear proof. wait for his travel flight documents could it not gave with wait the for U. 1992. alleged be VOL. Respondent has complied with these twin requisites. 2008 343 Japan Airlines vs. Damages. As provided in Article 1755 of the New Civil Code: ‚A common carrier is bound to carry the passengers safely as far as human care and foresight can provide. the reason behind the bumping off incident. despite his carrier.‛ Thus. failure to all that is the required of plaintiff safely to is to his prove the existence of such contract and its non-performance by the carrier through latter’s carry passenger destination.SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. It informed respondent that there was a need to first check the As flight authenticity by of JAL. with a due regard for all the circumstances. Breach of Contract. As an exception. Same. waiver such not he waiver have did must be express. Same. such damages are fact that respondent’s novation. that respondent had willingly done away with his right to fly on July 29. As a general rule. respondent choice but to be left behind. travel authority and personal articles already passed the rigid immigration and security routines. Same. boarding pass. a A common carrier ought to know the documents passenger carries. JAL. Same. which offer did not cure the airline’s default. 1992. was unceremoniously bumped off by the airlines. The latter was unceremoniously bumped off despite his protestations and valid travel documents and notwithstanding his contract of carriage with JAL. Mr. day. using the utmost diligence of very cautious persons. such must cannot supposed. Same. APRIL 22. damage was already done when he was offered to fly the next day. and in the cases in which the carrier is guilty of the kind of valid fraud or bad faith. Same. Requisites. as provided in Article 2220. he In could short. was that JAL personnel imputed that respondent would only use the trip to the United States as a pretext to stay and work in Japan. Damage had already been done when respondent was offered to fly the next day on July 30.S.—In an action for breach of contract the of carriage. moral damages are not recoverable in actions for damages predicated on a breach of contract for it is not one of the items enumerated under Article 2219 of the Civil Code. 174 Same. Same. Moreover. as found by the RTC and CA. It bears repeating that the power to admit or not an alien into 343 protestations and valid travel documents.—Apart from Page plane ticket. except in cases in which the mishap results in the death of a passenger. Since novation implies a waiver of the right the creditor had the novation. 552. that the admitted could ‚the Simangan because it was ready to depart. as a common . Simangan the country is a sovereign act which cannot be interfered with even by JAL. Same.—JAL did not allow respondent to fly.—As a general rule. Novation. Where a passenger. Since novation implies a waiver of the right the creditor behind had against the before his next the will.— to be Considering that respondent was forced to get out of the plane and left freely consented to It the rebooked before not be agree express. ought to know the kind of valid travel documents respondent carried. Said offer did not cure JAL’s default.‛ Since JAL definitely declared not respondent. Air Transportation. Simangan Common Carriers. no Embassy. We find untenable JAL’s defense of ‚verification of respondent’s documents‛ in its breach of contract of carriage.

degree In a of of compliance extraordinary possible a that common carriers presumption negligence against them. and (2) in the cases in which the carrier is guilty of fraud or bad faith. or malevolent manner. Same. negative which from incentives with in is. Same. Same. as in this case. Exemplary damages are designed by our civil law to in permit its the such against courts to by reshape is behaviour negative liable also that for is socially or deleterious deterrents malevolent consequence creating incentives against acts behaviour.—JAL respondent. Inattention to and lack of care for the interests of its passengers who are 344 the contract and in the execution thereof. Same. Same. diligence. JAL breached its contract of carriage with respondent in bad faith. entitled Passengers to be treated by the carrier’s employees with kindness. It is firmly settled that moral damages are recoverable in suits predicated on breach of a contract of carriage where it is proved that the carrier was guilty of fraud or bad faith. to be indignities respect.—Clearly. Same. amount to bad faith which entitles the passenger to an award of moral damages. Words and Phrases. particularly as to their convenience. Same. in relation to Article 2206(3) of the Civil Code. respect. Same. Same. or the deterrents standard of and the in against of highest creating such behaviour. as in this case. indignities abuses from 175 Page entitled to its utmost consideration. reckless. to tame their reckless instincts and to force them to take adequate care of human beings and their property. awarded by way of example or correction for the public good. personal 344 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. as provided in Article 2220.recoverable: (1) in cases in which the mishap results in the death of a passenger. for are kindness. What the law considers as bad faith which may furnish the ground for an award of moral damages would be bad faith in securing . Same. He was ordered out of the plane under the alleged reason that the genuineness of his travel documents should be verified. oppressive and Exemplary damages. Same. amount to bad faith which entitles the passenger to an award of moral damages. JAL is liable for moral damages. As found by the RTC. In its extraordinary concept. employees. Same. Exemplary damages are designed by our civil law to permit the courts to reshape behaviour that is socially deleterious in its consequence by creating requiring standard diligence. The acts committed by JAL against respondent amounts to bad faith. exemplary which are damages as its above-mentioned acts constitute wanton. may be recovered in contractual obligations. if defendant acted in wanton. or any other kind of deceit. as well as in the enforcement of its terms. Same. an attorney’s fee is an indemnity for damages injurious language. Same. Attorney’s Fees. protected and courtesy against abuses have a and from right to due such be consideration misconduct. Passengers have a right to be treated by the carrier’s employees and are injurious an action and with entitled language. fraudulent. It is firmly settled that moral damages are recoverable in suits predicated on breach of a contract of carriage where it is proved that the carrier was guilty of fraud or bad faith— inattention to and lack of care for the interests of its passengers who are entitled to its utmost consideration. particularly as to their convenience. Same. Same. JAL personnel summarily and insolently ordered respondent to disembark while the latter was already settled in his assigned seat.—Neglect or malfeasance of the carrier’s employees could give ground due for damages. Simangan employees. the law seeks to compel them to control their employees. oppressive. as provided in Article 1764. fact. courtesy and consideration protected and against personal such misconduct.

Furthermore. v. delicts regardless or of its source.. It was therefore erroneous for the CA to delete the award of attorney’s fees on the ground that the record is devoid of evidence to show the cost of the services of Page .—The above liabilities of JAL in the total amount of P800. They may be recovered as actual or compensatory damages when exemplary damages are awarded and whenever the court deems it just and equitable. When the judgment of the court awarding a sum of money becomes final and executory. as in this case. a loan or forbearance of money. contravenor can be held liable for payment of interest in the concept of actual and compensatory damages. APRIL 22. Estrella. When the obligation is breached. an attorney’s fee is an indemnity for damages ordered by the court to be paid by the losing party in a litigation. quasi-delicts breached. law. whether the case falls under paragraph 1 or paragraph 2. In its ordinary concept. the so-called ordinary and extraordinary. unless they have agreed that the award shall pertain to the lawyer as additional compensation or as part thereof. the interest due should be that which may have been stipulated in writing. Inc. Bank The Court. The basis of this compensation is the fact of his employment by and his agreement with the client.ordered by the court to be paid by the losing party in a litigation. is i. subject to the following rules. 346 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. unless 345 respondent’s counsel. this interim period being deemed to be by then an equivalent to a forbearance of credit.000. in Construction v.00 earn legal interest pursuant to the Court’s ruling in Construction Development Corporation of the Philippines v. Simangan they as have actual agreed or and that the award damages court shall pertain to the lawyer as are Interests. Court of Appeals. quasi-contracts..—With respect to attorney’s fees. shall be 12% per annum from such finality until its satisfaction. and it consists in the payment of a sum of money. to wit— 1. 234 SCRA 78 (1994) to wit: Regarding the imposition of legal interest at the rate of 6% from the time of the filing of the complaint. The basis of this is any of the cases provided by law where such award can be made. In its extraordinary concept. the rate of legal interest. an attorney’s fee is the reasonable compensation paid to a lawyer by his client for the legal services he has rendered to the latter. VOL. 2008 345 Japan Airlines vs. 269 SCRA 733 (1997) elucidated thus: There are two commonly accepted concepts of attorney’s fees. The amount is actually discretionary upon the Court so long as it passes the test of reasonableness. they may be awarded when defendant’s act or omission has compelled plaintiff to litigate with third persons or to incur (1997) expenses citing to protect his interest. 501 SCRA 228 (2006) citing Eastern Shipping Lines. above. such as those authorized in Article 2208. i. Court of Ap346 additional compensation or as part thereof—the amount may be recovered compensatory whenever the when it exemplary just and damages awarded deems equitable.e. we held in Eastern Shipping Lines. v. Development Corporation of the Philippines v. and is payable not to the lawyer but to the client. that when an obligation. Estrella. 501 SCRA 228 Traders Royal Employees Union-Independent National Labor Relations Commission. 552. the interest due shall itself earn legal interest from the time it is 176 Civil Code. and is payable not to the lawyer but to the client. Inc.e. Simangan peals. the contracts.

—JAL is a common carrier. Actions. It was filed by respondent precisely to claim his right to damages against JAL. Pleadings and Practice. When issues not raised by the pleadings are tried with the express or implied consent of the parties. x x x 3. it is damnum absque injuria.e. Well-settled is the rule that the commencement of an action does not per se make the action wrongful and subject the action to damages. Walang perhuwisyong maaring idulot ang paggamit sa sariling karapatan. caused the publication of his complaint. it is damnum absque injuria. This public issue or concern is a legitimate topic of a public comment that may be validly published. The publications involved matters about which the public has the right to be informed because they relate to a public issue. Allegedly. We reiterate case law that if damages result from a party’s exercise of a right. Although these additional damages allegedly suffered by JAL were not incorporated in its Answer as they arose subsequent to its filing. the interest rate shall be 12% until its satisfaction. 552. If damages result from a party’s exercise of a right. whether the case falls under paragraph 1 or paragraph 2.. in addition to the said total amount of P800. The 177 Page 347 . for the law could not have meant to impose a penalty on the right to litigate. JAL’s witness was able to testify on the same before the RTC. indeed. from judicial or extrajudicial demand under and subject to the provisions of Article 1169 of the Civil Code.000. It invites avail themselves of the comforts advantages it offers. shall be 12% per annum to be computed from default. Well-settled is the rule that the commencement of an action does not per se make the action wrongful and subject the action to damages. people JAL’s to business is mainly with the traveling and public. they shall be treated in all respects as if they had been raised in the pleadings. for the law could not have meant to impose a penalty on the right to litigate. From the time this Decision becomes final and executory. JAL is liable to pay respondent legal interest. The publication of a passenger’s complaint about his being bumped off involves matters about which the public has the right to be informed because they relate to a public issue and could not be the basis for a claim for damages. Pursuant to the above ruling of the Court. Counterclaims. In the absence of stipulation. (Emphasis supplied and citations omitted) Accordingly. they shall be treated in all respects as if they had been raised in the pleadings.—This compulsory counterclaim of JAL arising from the filing of the complaint may not be granted inasmuch as the complaint against it is obviously not malicious or unfounded. Hence. respondent caused the publications of his subject complaint against JAL in the newspaper for which JAL suffered damages. the rate of interest VOL. they shall be treated in all respects as if they had been raised in the pleadings. APRIL 22.‛ Freedom of Expression.judicially demanded. JAL presented a witness who testified that JAL suffered further damages. 2008 347 Japan Airlines vs. Since JAL deals with the public. As provided in Section 5. the legal interest is 6% and it shall be reckoned from September 21. Assuming that respondent. Libel.— During the trial. Lawful acts give rise to no injury. When the judgment of the court awarding a sum of money becomes final and executory. he may not be held liable for damages for it. Simangan Same. shall be 12% per annum from such finality until its satisfaction. the rate of legal interest. although these issues were not raised by the pleadings. however. its bumping off of respondent without a valid reason naturally drew public attention and generated a public issue. ‚(w)hen issues not raised by the pleadings are tried with the express or implied consent of the parties. this interim period being deemed to be by then an equivalent to a forbearance of credit.00. 2000 when the RTC rendered its judgment. i. Rule 10 of the Rules of Court. Damages. above.

pursuant to the Borjal case. 77011. public men. and 178 Page Court of Appeals. January 28. Considering that the published articles involve matters of public interest and that its expressed opinion is not malicious but based on established facts. 2000. 328 SCRA 717. and includes matters of public concern. Same. Asuncion. 1990. Therefore. 349 statements must be shown to have been written or published with the knowledge that they are false or in reckless disregard of whether they are false or not.R. 2005. the rule on privileged commentaries on matters of public interest applies to it. 123560.1 The power to admit or not an alien into the country is a sovereign act which cannot be interfered with even by Japan Airlines (JAL). 301 SCRA 1 348 particular flight on a certain date.3 petitioner JAL appeals the: (1) Decision4 dated May 31. Pan American World Airways. J. and the passenger has every right to expect that he would fly on that flight and on that date. 187 SCRA 763. 2 Japan Airlines v. Same. the imputations against JAL are not actionable. citing Alitalia Airways v. REYES. R. The privilege applies not only to public officials but extends to a great variety of subjects. then the carrier opens itself to a suit for breach of contract of carriage. 1 Yu Eng Cho v. a contract of carriage arises. there must be an actual malice in order that a discreditable imputation official to a be public person To in be his public capacity or to the a public libelous may actionable. Court of Appeals. 2005 of the Court of Appeals (CA) ordering it to pay respondent Jesus Simangan moral and exemplary damages.: WHEN an airline issues a ticket to a passenger confirmed on a includes fair commentaries on matters of public interest. March 27. Inc. Torres for petitioner. No. and candidates for office.R. G. 449 SCRA 544. 548. .. Simangan (1999). JAL may not claim damages for them.T. Simangan In this petition for review on certiorari.—Even though JAL is not a public official. G.R.. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. 161730. 770. APRIL 22. Even though an airline is not a public official. G.2 _______________ 348 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. Cruz for respondent. 2008 349 Japan Airlines vs.constitutional guarantee of freedom of the speech and of the press Edgardo V. July 24. 735. the rule on privileged commentaries on matters of public interest applies to it. Quisumbing. Hence. PETITION for review on certiorari of the decision and resolution of the VOL. If he does not. considered malicious. No. No. 552.

S.A.15 The stewardess asked respondent to show his travel documents. boarding pass.S. pp.. He was then 179 Page Leon. respondent purchased a round trip plane ticket from petitioner JAL for US$1. UCLA U. the stewardess along with a Japanese and a Filipino haughtily ordered him to stand up and leave the plane. 8 Id. U. The petition contains a prayer for the issuance of a temporary restraining order and/or preliminary injunction.00 and was issued the corresponding boarding _______________ carrying a falsified travel document and imputed that he would only use the trip to the United States as a pretext to stay and work in Japan. Penned by Associate Justice Magdangal M. 7 Id. concurring. Loreto Simangan.11 He was allowed to check-in at JAL’s counter.S. 2005 denying JAL’s motion for reconsideration. Del Castillo. American in Consulate in Manila to arrange for his visa. the date of his flight. respondent was allowed by JAL to enter its airplane. Just to allow him to board the plane. 1992. explaining that he was issued a U. U. visa.17 His pleas were ignored. Hence.S. 58-65.A. respondent issued emergency visa American Embassy Manila. In due time. visa. 4 Rollo. respondent Jesus Simangan decided to donate a kidney to his ailing cousin. 126-127. California. at pp.9 He was scheduled to a particular flight bound for Los Angeles. 6 Id..7 Respondent travel was to needed the United an to go to the United wrote by a the States letter to to complete the his 350 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs.10 On July 29. JAL’s airline crew suspected respondent of preliminary work-up and donation surgery.13 After passing through said immigration and security procedures. he pleaded with JAL to closely monitor his movements when the aircraft stops over in Narita. to facilitate respondent’s States. In 1991.485.12 His plane ticket. Shortly after. in UCLA School of Medicine in Los Angeles. (now deceased) and Mariano C.S. Simangan pass. travel authority and personal articles were subjected to rigid immigration and security routines. via Narita. 66-67. Valdez. Upon request of UCLA. California. at pp. respondent went to Ninoy Aquino International Airport in the company of several relatives and friends.16 Respondent protested.8 Having obtained an emergency U.14 While 3 Under Rule 45 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. respondent undertook 350 a series of laboratory tests at the National Kidney Institute in Quezon City to verify whether his blood and tissue type are compatible with Loreto’s. Jr. said tests proved that respondent’s blood and tissue type were well-matched with Loreto’s.6 Fortunately. De inside the airplane. The Facts 5 Id.(2) Resolution5 of the same court dated September 28. with Associate Justices Salvador J. . Japan.

22 Displeased by the turn of events. 22 Id. visa was cancelled. embarrassment and mental anguish. P1. 552. indeed.27 JAL also lodged institution a of counterclaim the complaint.5 million as exemplary damages and P500. 13 Id. the plane took off and he was left _______________ Subsequently. and that he suffered terrible 9 Id. 127. at pp.19 Afterwards. 127.18 In a nutshell. ticket in less order. anchored It on for respondent’s litigation alleged JAL alleged wrongful prayed expenses.. 127. 62. at p. at pp. at p. 21 Id. Simangan 20 Id. at p.00 was deducted hours.21 US$500. 62. Page .00 as attorney’s fees. 1992. 4195-V-93. 1992. 60. 11 Id. It argued. 15 Id. 351 authenticated by the United States Embassy‛25 because no one from JAL’s airport staff had encountered a parole visa before. that respondent agreed to be rebooked on July 30. Respondent went to JAL’s ground office and waited there for three behind.28 _______________ 19 Id. at pp. at pp...24 JAL denied the material allegations of the complaint.20 the sum Respondent of was refunded which the cost of his by plane JAL. 12 Id. 59. 127-128. 14 Id. at pp. 18 Id. 2008 351 Japan Airlines vs. 180 VOL. that its failure due to to ‚a allow need respondent for his to fly on his scheduled to be departure was travel documents 10 Id. he was informed that his travel documents were. 128. respondent’s U. respondent filed an action for damages against JAL with the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in Valenzuela City.000. 59.S.. exemplary damages and attorney’s fees. docketed as Civil Case No. 17 Id. 128. that respondent was advised to take the flight the following day.23 He prayed that he be awarded P3 million as moral damages. 62. 16 Id.. APRIL 22. 59.. He claimed he was not able to donate his kidney to Loreto.26 It posited that the authentication required additional time.. July 30. at p. among others.constrained to go out of the plane. Meanwhile.. 59.. respondent was bumped off the flight.

Simangan Page . at pp. The defendant should not be allowed to pretend. that when the plaintiff was ordered out of the plane under the pretext that the genuineness of his travel documents would be verified it had caused him embarrassment and besmirched reputation. and that when the plaintiff was finally not allowed to take VOL. judgment is hereby rendered ordering the defendant to pay the plaintiff the amount of P1.. disposing as The foregoing act of the defendant in ordering the plaintiff to deplane while already settled in his assigned seat clearly demonstrated that the defendant breached its contract of carriage with the plaintiff as passenger in bad faith and as such the plaintiff is entitled to moral and exemplary damages as well as to an award of attorney’s fees. the amount of P500.00 as exemplary damages and the amount of P250. he suffered more wounded feelings and social humiliation for which the plaintiff was asking to be awarded moral and exemplary damages as well as attorney’s fees. 552.00 as attorney’s fees. the RTC presided by Judge Floro P. 86-87. 352 the flight..000. The defendant is engaged in transporting passengers by plane from country to country and is therefore conversant with the travel documents. 2008 353 Japan Airlines vs. at pp. 352 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. 85. 28 Id. the defendant violated the contract of carriage.00 as moral damages.‛30 _______________ 29 Id. APRIL 22. 128-129. 30 Id.‛29 The RTC explained: ‚In summarily and insolently ordering the plaintiff to disembark while the its decision in favor of respondent (plaintiff). to the prejudice of the plaintiff not to know that the travel documents of the plaintiff are valid documents to allow him entry in the United States.23 Id.000. 27 Id. 25 Id. Simangan On September 21. 2000. The reason given by the defendant that what prompted them to investigate the genuineness of the travel documents of the plaintiff was that the plaintiff was not then carrying a regular visa but just a letter does not appear satisfactory. 353 181 latter was already settled in his assigned seat. plus the cost of suit. Alejo rendered follows: ‚WHEREFORE. at p. 60.000... 24 Id. 129.000. at pp. 26 Id.

34 Id. 2005. JAL appealed to the CA contending that it is not guilty of breach of contract of carriage.‛35 It found that respondent was ‚haughtily ejected‛36 by JAL and that ‚he was certainly embarrassed and humiliated‛37 when. at pp.Disagreeing with the RTC judgment. the CA affirmed the decision of the RTC with modification in that it lowered the amount of moral and exemplary damages and deleted the award of attorney’s fees. In a Decision33 dated May 31. 35 Id. at p. The fallo of the CA decision reads: ‚WHEREFORE.. not liable for damages. Simangan The CA ratiocinated: ‚While the protection of passengers must take precedence over fees is hereby DELETED.‛39 _______________ convenience. 36 Id. 182 31 Id.00) damages. hence. In fact. appellant’s attempt to rebook appellee the following day was too late and did not Page . 39 Id. 58-65. 354 354 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. at p. in the presence of other passengers.00) Pesos damages.31 It posited that it is the one entitled to recover on its counterclaim. 65. relieving the injured passenger of the duty to establish the fault of the carrier or of his employees. 37 Id. 62. Also. exemplary Hundred The (P250. and placing on the carrier the burden to prove that it was due to an unforeseen event or to force majeure. JAL’s airline staff ‚shouted at him to stand up and arrogantly asked him to produce his travel papers.32 CA Ruling 33 Id.. ‚there arose a perfected contract between them. 61. award 38 Id.000. without the least courtesy every human being is entitled to. by a simple proof of injury. the appealed Decision is AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION. 32 Id. Appellant JAPAN as AIR moral as LINES is ordered and Two to pay appellee Fifty of JESUS Thousand attorney’s SIMANGAN the reduced sums. at p. That appellee possessed bogus travel documents and that he might stay illegally in Japan are allegations without substantiation.000...‛38 and that ‚he was compelled to deplane on the grounds that his papers were fake. as follows: Five Hundred Thousand Pesos (P500.‛34 The CA elucidated that since JAL issued to respondent a round trip plane ticket for a lawful consideration. breach of the contract of carriage creates against the carrier a presumption of liability. the implementation of security measures must be attended by basic courtesies.

2008 .‛43 (Citations were Page 183 355 VOL. however. it resorted to the petition at bar. should not be palpably and scandalously excessive. inattention and lack of care on the part which of the entitles carrier the resulting passengers in the to failure of the of passenger moral to be in accommodated in the class contracted for amounts to bad faith or fraud the award damages accordance with Article 2220 of the Civil Code. July 30. No other proof of appellee’s social standing. No. diversion or amusements that will serve to alleviate the moral suffering he has undergone. 64 SCRA 610.000.. Simangan sustained as consequence of the defendant’s act. P250. financial capabilities was presented except that he was single and a businessman. Being discretionary on the court. moral damages are emphatically not intended to enrich a complainant at the expense of the defendant.‛42 Nevertheless. by reason of the defendant’s culpable action. deserves little attention. 42 Rollo. its 355 Japan Airlines vs.000. i. Appellee was definitely compelled to litigate in protecting his rights and in seeking relief from appellant’s misdeeds. To Us. 63. the sum of 500.00 as moral damages belated theory of novation. 41 G. It explained: ‚Fundamental in the law on damages is that one injured by a breach of a contract.000. 1992. 1975. the CA modified the damages awarded by the RTC.00 is just and fair.‛40 (Italics ours and citations were omitted) Citing Ortigas. the grant of P500.000.00 is adequate under the circumstances. 63. Questions not taken up during the trial cannot be raised for the first time on appeal. Moreover. that appellant’s original obligation to carry appellee to Narita and Los Angeles on July 29.00 as exemplary damages needs to be reduced designed to to to a reasonable permit the the level. the trial court’s award of P1. v. at p.relieve it from liability. courts acts The to of award mould the of exemplary that damages has the is behavior socially sum of deleterious consequences and its imposition is required by public policy suppress wanton offender. 552. Lufthansa German Airlines.000. the record is devoid of evidence to show the cost of the services of his counsel and/or the actual omitted) When JAL’s motion for reconsideration was denied. The award of P250. For. 40 Id. APRIL 22. or by a wrongful or negligent act or omission shall have a fair and just compensation commensurate to the loss _______________ appears to be overblown. Besides. Hence.41 the CA declared that ‚(i)n contracts of common carriage. the amount. Jr. Here. They are awarded only to enable the injured party to obtain means.. The damage had been done.00 as attorney’s fees lacks factual basis.000. 1992 was extinguished by novation when appellant agreed that appellee will instead take appellant’s flight to Narita on the following day. June 30. p.R. Issues expenses incurred in prosecuting his action. L-28773. Yet.e. It is inappropriate at bar. profession.

OPPRESSIVE OR 43 Id. B. JAL DID NOT ACT FRAUDULENTLY OR IN BAD FAITH AS TO ENTITLE RESPONDENT TO MORAL DAMAGES. Simangan A. RECKLESS. CONSIDERING THAT: _______________ THAT RESPONDENT WAS ENTITLED TO EXEMPLARY DAMAGES CONSIDERING THAT: A. RECKLESS. VOL. at p. ASSUMING THAT WAS OF DAMAGES. OPPRESSIVE OR MALEVOLENT FINDING FOR JAL ON ITS COUNTERCLAIM. 64. 356 MALEVOLENT MANNER AS TO ENTITLE RESPONDENT TO EXEMPLARY DAMAGES. WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS ERRED IN RULING THAT RESPONDENT WAS ENTITLED TO MORAL DAMAGES. ASSUMING ARGUENDO THAT JAL WAS GUILTY OF BREACH. MORAL DAMAGES MAY BE AWARDED IN BREACH OF CONTRACT CASES BAD ONLY WHEN THE BREACH ARGUENDO IS ATTENDED JAL BY FRAUD GUILTY OR OF 44 Id. JAL DID NOT ACT IN A WANTON FRAUDULENT. APRIL 22. WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS AWARD OF P750. 23-24. II. 2008 Page . III. JAL WAS NOT GUILTY OF BREACH OF CONTRACT.. THE LAW DISTINGUISHES A CONTRACTUAL BREACH EFFECTED IN GOOD FAITH FROM ONE ATTENDED BY BAD FAITH. B. 552.44 (Italics Ours) _______________ BREACH. IV. at pp. CONDUCT.000 IN DAMAGES WAS EXCESSIVE AND UNPRECEDENTED. EXEMPLARY DAMAGES ARE NOT RECOVERABLE IN BREACH OF CONTRACT WANTON.WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS ERRED IN RULING JAL poses the following issues— I. ASSUMING ARGUENDO THAT RESPONDENT WAS ENTITLED TO AN AWARD 356 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. WHETHER OR NOT THE COURT OF APPEALS ERRED IN NOT OF CARRIAGE UNLESS THE CARRIER IS GUILTY OF FRAUDULENT. 184 C.. 357 FAITH.

45 We have repeatedly held that the findings of fact of the CA are final and conclusive and cannot be reviewed on appeal to the Supreme Court provided they are based on substantial evidence. 1983. G. and (3) whether or not JAL is entitled to its counterclaim for damages. and are bound by.48 The said exceptions.47 Among the exceptions to this rule are: (a) when the conclusion is a finding grounded entirely on speculations. Page 185 _______________ . (2) whether or not respondent is entitled to moral and exemplary damages. there being no sufficient showing that the said courts committed reversible error in reaching their conclusions. which was deleted.. 47 Korean Airlines Co. We thus sustain the coherent facts as established by the courts below. September 24. July 30. No. which are being invoked by JAL. 156 SCRA 321. Olango v. Nos. citing Alsua-Betts v.. December 11. L-61418. including the testimony of the witnesses.R. (b) when the inference made is manifestly mistaken. There is no indication that the findings of the CA are contrary to the evidence on record or that vital testimonies of JAL’s witnesses were disregarded. June 28. 1987. Court of Appeals. 92 SCRA 332. there are three (3) issues to resolve here: (1) whether or not JAL is guilty of contract of carriage.46 We have no jurisdiction. We generally rely upon. Simangan Basically. citing Tongoy v. as a rule. v.R. This Court is not a trier of facts. G. in making its findings. 1987.357 Japan Airlines vs. Court of Appeals. No. (f) when the CA. (c) where there is grave 358 358 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. No. L-55864. which are better equipped and have better opportunity to assess the evidence first-hand. went beyond the issues of the case and the same is contrary to the admissions of both appellant and appellee. No. 46 Id. 213. 1979. Likewise. (e) when the findings of facts are conflicting. 323. G. (d) when the judgment is based on a misapprehension of facts. Court of Appeals. there was no grave abuse of discretion in the appreciation of facts or mistaken and absurd inferences. L-45645. 123 SCRA 99. The RTC findings of facts were affirmed by the CA. Court of First Instance of Misamis Oriental. We are not a trier of facts.R. Chiefly. G. and that of attorney’s fees. Neither did the CA commit misapprehension of facts nor did it fail to consider relevant facts. the issues are factual. 121 SCRA 338. Simangan abuse of discretion. to reverse their findings.R. 1983. The CA also gave its nod to the reasoning of the RTC except as to the awards of damages. L-78015. which were reduced. Our Ruling 45 Malaysian Airline System v. March 28. Court of Appeals. surmises or conjectures. G. are not found here. absurd or impossible. the conclusions on this matter of the lower courts. L-46430-31.R. Ltd. 154 SCRA 211.

56 As admitted by JAL.53 It further contended that respondent agreed to fly the next day so that it could first verify his travel document..50 After passing through said immigration and security procedure. Embassy. Simangan because it was ready to depart. California. He was not allowed by JAL to fly. at pp. Said offer did not cure JAL’s default. citing Ramos v.51 Concisely. 49 Rollo.‛57 48 Malaysian Airline System v. 25.55 We cannot agree. That respondent purchased a round trip plane ticket from JAL and was issued the corresponding boarding pass is uncontroverted.‛52 It alleged that no one from its airport staff had encountered a parole visa before. 59. ‚the flight could not wait for Mr. 62. he In could short. thus failed to comply with its obligation under the contract of carriage.S. travel authority and personal articles were subjected to rigid immigration and security procedure. 19 SCRA 289. supra note 45. The latter was unceremoniously bumped off despite his protestations and valid travel documents and notwithstanding his contract of carriage with JAL. 128.R. hence. JAL did not allow respondent to fly. U. 186 Page Japan Airlines vs. 2008 359 52 Id. boarding pass. 85. APRIL 22. It informed respondent that there was a need to first check the authenticity of his travel documents with the U. at p. Considering that respondent was forced to get out of the plane and left behind against the his next will.. . at pp. 1967... at pp.A. not he have did freely consented to the to be rebooked not agree alleged novation. 53 Id. L-22533.. it gave respondent no choice but to be left behind.S. Court of Appeals. 25. 51 Id. February 9. Japan. Pepsi-Cola Bottling Co. G. 128. Damage had already been done when respondent was offered to fly the next day on July 30. 1992. JAL 54 Id. 323-324. No. 359 Since JAL definitely declared that the flight could not wait for respondent. 1992. he was allowed by JAL to enter its airplane to fly to Los Angeles. 50 Id. pp. Simangan Nevertheless. 59. Since novation implies a waiver _______________ VOL. via Narita.JAL is guilty of breach of contract of carriage.54 It maintained that it was not guilty of breach of contract of carriage as respondent was not able to travel to the United States due to his own voluntary desistance. there was a contract of carriage between JAL and respondent.49 His plane ticket. day. _______________ JAL justifies its action by arguing that there was ‚a need to verify the authenticity of respondent’s travel document. there was novation. 27. JAL made respondent get off the plane on his scheduled departure on July 29. 552. at pp.

.. at p. at p. Aboitiz v. Simangan Page . Llamas. 27. ought to know the kind of valid travel documents respondent carried. 299. 61 Emphasis ours. p. 2008 361 Japan Airlines vs. V. at p. the reason behind the bumping off incident. 63 Tolentino. As provided in Article 1755 of the New Civil Code: as far ‚A as common human carrier care is bound foresight to carry the passengers safely and can provide. 2003. 62 Japan Airlines v. with a due regard for all the circumstances. was that JAL personnel imputed that respondent would only use the trip to the United States as a pretext to stay and work in Japan. 24. 360 It bears repeating that the power to admit or not an alien into the country JAL. 128. boarding pass. 360 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. 361 using the utmost diligence of very cautious persons. No. Simangan of the right the creditor had before the novation. Asuncion. G. as a common carrier. pp. 302. We find untenable JAL’s defense of 187 ‚verification carriage.. December 8.. G. Commentaries and Jurisprudence on the Civil Code of the Philippines. 1992 ed. 85. supra note 2. APRIL 22. Moreover.R. such waiver must be express. 57 Id.60 JAL. 62.M. 59 Rollo. that respondent had willingly done away with his right to fly on July 29. travel authority and personal articles already passed the rigid immigration and security routines. citing Babst v.‛61 Thus..55 Id.. 154127. A. all that is required of plaintiff is to by safely prove the to the carrier his existence through destination.62 In an action for breach of contract of carriage. 99398.R. 350 SCRA 341. Vol. of respondent’s documents‛ in its breach of contract of VOL. Court of Appeals. 417 SCRA 292. 552. 1992. at p. without clear proof. 56 Id. _______________ 58 Garcia v. 59. 60 Id. No. January 26. 2001.59 Apart from the fact that respondent’s plane ticket.58 It cannot be supposed.63 of the such contract failure has and to its carry nonthe with performance passenger latter’s is a sovereign act which cannot be interfered with even by Respondent complied these twin requisites. as found by the RTC and CA.

Worse. These findings of facts were upheld by the CA. Esguerra. 73835. visa coupled with his plea to appellant to closely monitor movements when aircraft stops over in Narita. 171 SCRA 620. the appellant’s airline staff shouted at him to stand up and arrogantly asked him to produce his travel papers. he was compelled to deplane on the grounds his that his papers the were fake. G. as in this case. 267 (1959). to wit: _______________ embarrassed and humiliated when. 105. January 17.65 The acts committed by JAL against respondent amounts to bad faith. citing Flores v. As a general rule. 169 SCRA 226. Sabena Belgian World Airlines v.Respondent is entitled to moral and exemplary damages and attorney’s fees plus legal interest. 84458. 82068. G. G. 105 Phil. G. L31420. as provided in Article 1764. Court of Appeals. 122039. 362 recoverable attended actions fraud bad faith. contractu It JAL except is alleged only that when they the did are breach not is 64 Calalas v. and (2) in the cases in which the carrier is guilty of fraud or bad faith. No. March 31. v. without the least courtesy every human being is entitled to. Then. With reference in by to moral ex or damages. Ltd. hence. As found by the RTC.R. 1982.‛66 (Italics ours) Clearly. It is firmly settled that moral damages are recoverable in suits predicated on breach of a contract of carriage where it is proved that the carrier was guilty of fraud or bad faith. His protestation of having been issued a U. 1989.R. May 31.R. 2000.. 65 Id. contended that it not act fraudulently or in bad faith towards respondent. Inattention to and lack of care for the interests of its passengers who are entitled to its utmost consideration. damages recoverable: cases which 362 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. October 23. 1989. G. JAL is liable for moral damages.S. JAL breached its contract of carriage with respondent in bad faith. JAL personnel summarily and insolently ordered respondent to disembark while the latter was already settled in his assigned seat. Miranda.64 in As an the exception. Intermediate Appellate Court. China Airlines. 365. Court of Appeals. it may not be held liable for moral damages. No. in relation to Article 2206(3) of the Civil Code. 117 SCRA 741. What the law considers as 188 Page Court of Appeals. No. . No. moral damages are not recoverable in actions for damages predicated on a breach of contract for it is not one of the items enumerated such under Article are 2219 of the (1) Civil in Code.R. citing Philippine Rabbit Bus Lines. he was made to wait for many hours at the office of appellant only to be told later that he has valid travel documents. 1989. He was ordered out of the plane under the alleged reason that the genuineness of his travel documents should be verified. November 6. He was certainly mishap results in the death of a passenger. 332 SCRA 356. v. were ignored.R. in the presence of other passengers. 179 SCRA 95. amount to bad faith which entitles the passenger to an award of moral damages. No. as provided in Article 2220. particularly as to their convenience. Inc. Simangan ‚x x x he was haughtily ejected by appellant.

with in the standard of and the in of extraordinary possible a creating diligence.72 citing Traders Royal Bank Em_______________ 66 Rollo. Court of Appeals. citing Zulueta v. 1.67 JAL is also liable for exemplary damages as its above-mentioned acts constitute wanton. 71 Singson v.000. 68 Victory Liner v. Simangan Exemplary damages are designed by our civil law to permit the courts to reshape behaviour that is socially deleterious in its consequence by creating negative incentives or deterrents against such behaviour.bad faith which may furnish the ground for an award of moral damages would be bad faith in securing the contract and in the execution thereof. Gammad. This Our view. L-28589. No. In . 281 SCRA 1.000. 2008 363 69 Mecenas v. February 29. Court of Appeals. if defendant acted in wanton. compliance which from is. p. G. Passengers have a right to be treated by the carrier’s employees with kindness. 159636.R.R. oppressive and malevolent acts against respondent. G. injurious language. May 17. 552. 67 Philippine Airlines v. in Construction Development Corporation of the Philippines v. 12 (1997). 257 SCRA 33. as in this case. 282 SCRA 149. No. that highest common carriers presumption negligence against them. respect. the law seeks to compel them to control their employees. 88052.71 The Court. reckless. December 14.69 Neglect or malfeasance of the carrier’s employees could give ground for an action for damages. 1997.68 _______________ requiring standard diligence. This award is reasonably sufficient to indemnify him for the humiliation embarrassment example to discourage the repetition of similar oppressive acts. G. 180 SCRA 83. 13. With respect to attorney’s fees. they may be awarded when defendant’s act or omission has compelled plaintiff to litigate with third persons or to incur expenses to protect his interest. which are awarded by way of example or correction for the public good. November 18. 70 See note 63. or malevolent manner. No. or any other kind of deceit. Court of Appeals.00 as moral damages and P100. in suffered. No. Exemplary damages. 119641. 119995.R. courtesy and due consideration and are entitled to be protected against personal misconduct. November 25. 165. citing Yobido v. Estrella. No. to tame their reckless instincts and to force them to take adequate care of human beings and their property. 189 Page Japan Airlines vs. 363 VOL. as well as in the enforcement of its terms. 43. 1972. degree a of of fact. Court of Appeals. oppressive.R.R. indignities and abuses from such employees. 1996. G.70 The assessment of P500. Pan-Am Airways. 43 SCRA 397. fraudulent. 1989. may be recovered in contractual obligations.00 as exemplary damages in and respondent’s he favor is. 346 Phil. reasonable also serves as an and realistic. APRIL 22. 444 SCRA 370. 62. G. 2004.

No. Art. July 8. compensatory Page damages when exemplary damages are awarded and whenever the court deems it just and equitable. v. The basis of this is any of the cases provided by law where such award can be made. the socalled ordinary and extraordinary. 365 elucidated thus: ‚There are two commonly accepted concepts of attorney’s fees. March 14. 129132. Simangan ployees Union-Independent v. that when an obligation. 1998. 364 Considering the factual backdrop of this case. the contravenor can be held liable for payment of interest in .000. The amount is Court may be so long as as it passes or the recovered actual actually test of VOL.R.73 73 G. Civil Code. Appeals. In its extraordinary concept. 74 Traders Royal Bank Employees Union-Independent v. delicts regardless or of its is source. and is payable not to the lawyer but to the client. 269 SCRA 733.00 is reasonably modest. an attorney’s fee is an indemnity for damages ordered by the court to be paid by the losing party in a litigation. unless they have agreed that the award shall pertain to the lawyer as additional compensation or as part thereof. _______________ 364 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs.‛74 It was therefore erroneous for the CA to delete the award of attorney’s fees on the ground that the record is devoid of evidence to show the cost of the services upon They of respondent’s counsel. 2208. 120592. quasi-delicts 190 discretionary the reasonableness.. The above liabilities of JAL in the total amount of P800. APRIL 22. contracts. The basis of this compensation is the fact of his employment by and his agreement with the client. Court i. National Labor Relations Commission. Court of Appeals. Inc. Civil Code.000. G. September 8. 740.76 citing Eastern Shipping Lines. quasi-contracts. Court of Appeals.00 earn legal interest pursuant to the Court’s ruling in Construction Development Corporation of the Philippines v. id. No. 292 SCRA 124. v. Simangan Estrella. 552. Inc. attorney’s fees in the amount of P200. 2008 365 Japan Airlines vs.e. an attorney’s fee is the reasonable compensation paid to a lawyer by his client for the legal services he has rendered to the latter. we held in Eastern Shipping Lines.72 G. 147791. 2006.. of law. No.77 to wit: ‚Regarding the imposition of legal interest at the rate of 6% from the time of the filing of the complaint.R. breached.75 as in this case. 501 SCRA 228. 1997. In its ordinary concept.R. 243-244. 75 Vital-Gozon v. National Labor Relations Commission. at p. such as those authorized in Article 2208.

the interest due should be that which may have been stipulated in writing. above. in addition to the said total amount of P800. this interim period being deemed to be by then an equivalent to a forbearance of credit. and it consists in the payment of a sum of money. a loan or forbearance of money. to wit— 1. July 12.‛78 (Emphasis supplied and citations omitted) Accordingly. When an obligation.000. Pursuant to the above ruling of the Court. From the time this Decision becomes final and executory. 97412. was filed respondent precisely to claim his right to damages against JAL. 77 G. 1994. When the obligation is breached. the interest rate shall be 12% until its satisfaction. an interest on the amount of damages awarded may be imposed at the discretion of the court at the rate of 6% per annum.e. Civil Code) but when such certainty cannot be so reasonably established at the time the demand is made. be on the amount finally adjudged. 244-245.. where the demand is established with reasonable certainty. No interest.e. the interest due shall itself earn legal interest from the time it is judicially demanded. malicious unfounded. Well-settled is the rule that the commencement of an action does not per se make the Page . 1169. In the absence of stipulation. is breached. the rate of interest shall be 12% per annum to be computed from default.the concept of actual and compensatory damages. subject to the 366 following rules. There is no mention of any other counter claims. the rate of _______________ 191 complaint may not be granted inasmuch as the complaint against it is obviously 76 Supra note 72. 2000 when the RTC rendered its judgment. from judicial or extrajudicial demand under and subject to the provisions of Article 1169 of the Civil Code. JAL is liable to pay respondent legal interest. The actual base for the computation of legal interest shall. in any case. When the judgment of the court awarding a sum of money becomes final and executory. at pp. not constituting a loan or forbearance of 366 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. whether the case falls under paragraph 1 or paragraph 2. Furthermore. however. Accordingly.R. shall be 12% per annum from such finality until its satisfaction. shall be adjudged on unliquidated claims or damages except when or until the demand can be established with reasonable certainty. i. the legal interest is 6% and it shall be reckoned from September 21.. No. 3. The counterclaim of JAL in its Answer79 is a compulsory counterclaim for damages and attorney’s fees arising from the filing of the complaint. 234 SCRA 78. Simangan legal interest. i. JAL is not entitled to its counterclaim for damages. This compulsory not counterclaim or of JAL arising It from the filing by of the money. the interest shall begin to run only from the date the judgment of the court is made (at which time the quantification of damages may be deemed to have been reasonably ascertained).00. 2. the interest shall begin to run from the time the claim is made judicially or extrajudicially (Art.

it is damnum absque injuria. at pp. August 31. 79 Rollo. G. Basco. 80 United Coconut Planters Bank v. JAL is a common carrier. 82 Rollo. Court of Appeals.‛ Nevertheless. No. 2001. citing ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corporation v. JAL’s business is mainly with the traveling public. JAL’s witness was able to testify on the same before the RTC. ‚(w)hen issues not raised by the pleadings are tried with the express or implied consent of the parties. Simangan We reiterate case law that if damages result from a party’s exercise of a right. 83 Id. Walang perhuwisyong maaring karapatan. they shall be treated in all respects as if they 78 Eastern Shipping Lines.R. 552. February 21. however. 1999. v. 84 Morris v.81 injury.84 Since JAL deals with the public. pp. G. This public issue or concern is a legitimate topic of a public comment that may be validly published.83 Hence. 2004. Rule 10 of the Rules of Court.. its bumping off of respondent without a valid reason naturally drew public attention and generated a public issue. No.R. _______________ 192 Although these additional damages allegedly suffered by JAL were not incorporated in its Answer as they arose subsequent to its filing. As provided in Section 5. 60. 344. 86-87. 127957.. 352 SCRA 428. JAL presented a witness who testified that JAL suffered further damages. Inc. 95-97.82 Lawful acts give rise to no ang paggamit sa sariling 81 Id. 435. G. Court of Appeals.. 128690.R. for the law could not have meant to impose a penalty on the right to litigate. Allegedly. 301 SCRA 572. respondent caused the publications of his subject complaint against JAL in the newspaper for which JAL suffered damages. 128. 437 SCRA 325. The publications involved matters about which the public has the right to VOL.action wrongful and subject the action to damages.80 _______________ although these issues were not raised by the pleadings. they shall be treated in all respects as if they had been raised in the pleadings. at pp. pp. JAL’s counterclaim cannot be granted. Court of Appeals. During the trial. 60. APRIL 22. Page . January 21. 367 had been raised in the pleadings. It invites people to avail themselves of the comforts and advantages it offers. 127-128. 368 idulot be informed because they relate to a public issue. No. 2008 367 Japan Airlines vs. id. 142668.

88 Considering that the published articles involve matters of public interest and that its expressed opinion is not malicious but based on established facts.000. then it is immaterial that the opinion happens to be mistaken.00 as exemplary damages. may not of be indeed. 2004. public men.00 as attorney’s fees. id. APRIL 22.R. Court of the petition is is DENIED. Therefore. In order that such discreditable imputation to a public official may be actionable.87 Appeals AFFIRMED MODIFICATION. The privilege applies not only to public officials but extends to a great variety of subjects. because every man is presumed innocent until his guilt is judicially proved. WHEREFORE. and candidates for office. January 14. as long as it might reasonably be inferred from the facts. Page . 23.368 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. The doctrine of fair comment means that while in general every discreditable imputation publicly made deemed false. his The press malicious. WITH The appealed Decision As of the commentaries on matters of public interest applies to it. and includes matters of public concern. and every false imputation is deemed malicious.‛86 (Citations omitted and italics ours) Even though JAL is not a public official. Court of Appeals. 126466. 552. (2) P100. it must either be a false allegation of fact or a comment based on a false supposition. modified. when the discreditable imputation is directed against a public person in his public capacity.000. there must be an actual malice in order that a discreditable imputation to a public person in his public capacity or to a public official may be actionable. nevertheless. This is explained by the Court in Borjal v. November 25. at p. To be considered petitioner Japan Airlines is ordered to pay respondent Jesus Simangan the following: (1) P500.. 444 SCRA 28. Court of Appeals. 2008 369 Japan Airlines vs. the rule on privileged VOL. 86 Borjal v. If the comment is an expression of opinion. the libelous statements must be shown to have been written or published with _______________ damages 85 G. No. and fair commentaries a valid on matters in of an public action interest for libel are or 107566. 1999. No. it is not necessarily actionable.R. JAL may not claim damages for them. the imputations against JAL are not actionable. and (3) P200.000. Court of Appeals. Simangan Assuming complaint. that he respondent. Simangan the knowledge that they are false or in reckless disregard of whether they are false or not. G. constitutional guarantee speech includes fair commentaries on matters of public interest. 87 Baguio Midland Courier v.85 to wit: ‚To reiterate. 301 SCRA 1. held freedom of caused liable the for the publication for of and the of it. pursuant to the Borjal case. 193 Hence. based on established facts. 369 privileged constitute defense is slander.00 as moral damages.

552 SCRA 341(2008)] Nachura. the unpaid amount. From the time this Decision becomes final and executory. Simangan. at pp. Chico-Nazario and transported on that flight and on that date and it becomes the carrier’s obligation to carry him and his luggage safely to the agreed destination. judgment affirmed with modification.The total amount adjudged shall earn legal interest at the rate of 6% per annum from the date of judgment of the Regional Trial Court on September 21.—When purpose in a passenger that contracts for a must specific be flight. SO ORDERED. Court of Appeals. shall earn legal interest at the rate of 12% per annum until its satisfaction. Ynares-Santiago (Chairperson). Asuncion. 370 370 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Japan Airlines vs. he has a making choice which respected. concur. 417 SCRA 474 [2004]) When an airline issues a ticket to a passenger. (Singapore Airlines Limited vs. Petition denied. JJ. 2000 until the finality of this Decision. confirmed for a particular flight on a certain date.. Simangan Page 194 . Austria-Martinez. Fernandez. a contract of carriage arises and the passenger has every right to expect that he be _______________ 88 Borjal v. if any. 449 SCRA 544 [2005]) ——o0o—— [Japan Airlines vs. supra note 85. (Japan Airlines vs. 28-29. Notes.

MYRNA TAMAYO and FELIX OLEDAN. LUCITA SUYOM. Suyom VOL. SEPTEMBER 5. a the claim for delict. and (c) connection of cause and effect between the fault or negligence of the defendant and the damage incurred by the plaintiff. 143360. damages Since twice these for two the civil Page 195 or under both . (b) fault or negligence of the defendant. Offended party cannot ‚recover damages twice for the same act or omission‛ or under both causes. 446 446 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. respondents.* EQUITABLE LEASING CORPORATION. petitioner.September 5. a claim Requisites on to sustain delict.R. 2002 veat same that act the or offended omission‛ party cannot ‚recover causes. 2002. Same. 388.—These two causes of action (ex delicto or ex quasi delicto) may be availed of. Suyom G.445 Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. Negligence. vs. MARISSA ENANO. Same. subject to the ca_______________ * THIRD DIVISION.—To based quasi following requisites must be proven: (a) damage suffered by the plaintiff. Civil quasi Law. No. sustain Quasi-delict. Same.

(CA) in CA-G. of the Regional Trial Court of Manila. in Civil Case No. Same. 2000 Decision1 of the Court of Appeals2 The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. 2002 447 Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. because vehicle. Suyom present case. Petitioner held liable for the deaths and of the injuries made complained of a of.: Court (RTC) of Manila (Branch 14) had earlier disposed in this wise: . the registered owner of a motor vehicle is solidarity liable for the injuries and damages caused by the negligence of the driver. CV No.R. 55474. the failure to In an action based on quasi delict. the owner I operator of record is the employer of the driver. Thus. The same principle applies even if the registered owner of any vehicle does not use it for public service. in Civil Case No. Pilapil & Associates for petitioner. The Court has consistently ruled that. SEPTEMBER 5. Damages. regardless of sales made of a motor vehicle. petitioner. Mercado. 1997. Unless registered with the Land Transportation Office. Motor Vehicle Law. Same. especially the victims of accidents involving the said transport equipment. dated May 5. 1994. Santos. The decretal portion of the Decision reads as follows: ‚WHEREFORE. is liable for the acts of the driver employed by its former lessee who has become the owner of that vehicle by virtue of an unregistered Deed of Sale. because it was the registered owner of the tractor at the time of the accident on July 17. the registered owner is the lawful operator insofar as the public and third persons are concerned.liabilities are distinct and independent of each other. the owner/operator of record the employer of the actual operator and employer being considered as merely its agent. 1994. which is the registered owner. J. 95-73522. Statement of the Case Before us is a Petition for Review under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. In contemplation of law. is hereby AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION that the award of attorney’s fees is DELETED. Same. assailing the May 12. it was the registered owner of the tractor at the time of the accident on July 17. the Regional Trial Page 196 PANGANIBAN. the instant appeal is hereby DISMISSED for lack of merit. The assailed decision. consequently. in spite of the fact that the vehicle may have already been the subject of an unregistered Deed of Sale in favor of another person. 388.—We hold petitioner liable for the deaths and the injuries complained of. in the 447 recover in one will not necessarily preclude recovery in the other. Lim & Associates Law Offices for private respondents. the sale—while valid and binding between the parties—does not affect third parties. 9573522. In contemplation of law. premises considered. PETITION for review on certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals. is it is directly and primarily driver. VOL. the actual operator and employer being considered as merely its agent.‛3 On the other hand. Branch 14. Regardless sales motor the registered owner is the lawful operator insofar as the public and third persons are concerned. the responsible for the consequences of its operation.

B.000. 2. 1994. Reniel Oledan. 296094-SA.5 Upon verification with the Land Transportation Office. Ecatine Corporation 197 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. 21-31.‛4 The Facts On July 17.00 as and for attorney’s fees. (Division chairman) and Renato C. 622041396 and Certificate of Registration No.000. and funeral expenses.00 for the medical treatment of her two sons. and funeral expenses.‚WHEREFORE.00 for the death of Kernel Tamayo. 1995. P7. daughter. and two sons of Respondent Lucita Suyom.000. Abad Santos. Jr. 2 Third Division.00 as actual damages D. Injured and were Respondent Respondent Felix Oledan Oledan’s himself. The sum of P5. respondents filed against Raul Tutor. p. and 3. C.‛ On April 448 15. Tondo.000. 08262797. Vitas. Tamayo. P50. P30. 11. a Fuso Road Tractor driven by Raul Tutor rammed into the house cum store of Myrna Tamayo located at Pier 18. TO MYRNA TAMAYO 1. 448 resulting in multiple homicide and multiple physical injuries in Criminal Case No. pp.000.000. 31. 3 Assailed Decision. Manila.00 as moral damages.00 for medical expenses. Respondent Felmarie Marissa 1 Rollo. Tutor was charged with and later convicted of reckless imprudence concurred in by Justices Quirino D. Adefuin-de la Cruz and Enano.00 for the damage to the store and its contents. P50.000. judgment is hereby rendered in favor of the plaintiffs and against the defendant Equitable Leasing Corporation ordering said defendant to pay to the plaintiffs the following: A. P56. and 3. Rollo.000. TO MARISSA ENANO 1. Metropolitan Trial Court of Manila.000. _______________ 2. Written by Justice B. A. respondents were furnished a copy of Official Receipt No. A portion of the house was destroyed. Dacudao (member). Branch 12. The sum of P120. TO LUCITA SUYOM 1.00 for the death of Felmarie Oledan. the sum of P50. the sum of P50. p. Pinned to death under the engine of the tractor were Respondent Myrna Tamayo’s son.00 as moral damages. TO FELIX OLEDAN 1. Suyom (‚Ecatine‛) and Equitable _______________ Page .7 showing that the registered owner of the tractor was ‚Equitable Leasing Corporation/leased to Edwin Lim.

even if that vehicle had been the subject of a Deed of Sale in favor of Ecatine on December 9. 11. petitioner was liable to respondents. 388. p. p.12 450 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Page . Branch 14. 11 RTC Decision. Lim issued the an Order _______________ 8 Annex ‚F‛. 6 See Annex ‚C‛. Rollo. id. VOL. 38. p.. 54. It held that since the Deed of Sale between petitioner and Ecatine registered with Land Transportation Office (LTO). Rollo. because they could not be located and served with summonses. 117. penned by Judge Inocencio D. p. the legal owner was still Equitable. p. 38. Rollo. but of Ecatine. ibid. pp. 449 Ruling of the Court of Appeals Sustaining the RTC.13 In order that a transfer of ownership of a motor vehicle can bind third persons. 57. not of Equitable. The trial court. 45.9 On the other hand. Rollo. 2002 449 Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. 9 Respondents’ Memorandum. 12 Petitioner’s Memorandum. p. 1..11 Thus. Rollo. Rollo. 14 Id. 5 See Annex ‚E‛. p. p. p. 7. penned by Judge Lydia Querubin Layosa. Maliaman. 13 CA Decision. Rollo.14 The CA likewise upheld respondents’ claim for moral damages against petitioner because the appellate court considered Tutor. Raul upon Tutor. in its Answer with Counterclaim. p. p. actual been the RTC rendered damages the its and Decision attorney’s ordering fees to petitioner pay not and moral 198 respondents. motion Ecatine of and plaintiffs’ Edwin counsel. the CA held that petitioner was still to be legally deemed the owner/operator of the tractor. 5. p. p. The reason cited by the CA was that the Certificate of Registration on file with the LTO still remained in petitioner’s name. 5.10 petitioner alleged that the vehicle had already been sold to Ecatine and that the former was no longer in possession and control thereof at the time of the incident. After trial to had on the merits. 450 dropping from Complaint. Rollo.4 RTC Decision. p. 35. 95-73522 in the RTC of Manila. 7 See Annex ‚C-1‛. It also claimed that Tutor was an employee. 9 & 29. Suyom Leasing Corporation (‚Equitable‛) a Complaint8 for damages docketed as Civil Case No. 10 Annex ‚G‛. 1992. 27. SEPTEMBER 5. 8. it must be duly recorded in the LTO.

2001. Not having employed Raul _______________ operator. this Petition. Original in upper case. the aggrieved party may sue the negligent party under (1) Article 10019 of the Revised Penal Code. 16 The case by was deemed F. or (2) under Article 217620of the Civil Code. was signed by Atty. to be an agent of the registered owner/ Petitioner contends that it should not be held liable for the damages sustained by respondents and that arose from the negligence of the driver of the Fuso Road Tractor. Rollo. II Sergio M. In negligence cases. petitioner raises the following issues for the Court’s consideration: I 15 Id.21 Page 199 . [was] not liable for damages of the suffered by private respondents in an action based on quasi delict for negligent the employee petitioner. 10 & 30. Suyom the driver of the tractor. 17 Page 7. which it had already sold to Ecatine at the time of the accident. p.. pp. the driver of the vehicle. ‚Whether or not the Court of Appeals and the trial court gravely erred when the they decided acts and of a held driver that petitioner who [was].16 Issues In its Memorandum.Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. 2001. 2002 451 Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. it could not have controlled or ‚Whether or not the Court of Appeals and the trial court gravely erred when they awarded moral damages to private respondents despite their failure to prove that the injuries they suffered were brought by petitioner’s wrongful act.‛17 This Court’s Ruling The Petition has no merit.18 We are not persuaded. Yolando Mercado Lira Associates. Petitioner’s Memorandum. 388. First Issue: Liability for Wrongful Acts supervised him. which was signed Atty. Suyom Tutor. for civil liability ex delicto. for civil liability ex quasi delicto. upon the Court’s receipt of respondents’ Memorandum. SEPTEMBER 5. filed on October 24.15 Hence. Ceniza of Santos Pilapil and Associates. 451 VOL. 101. submitted Lira of for decision on December and 13.

2176. and (c) connection of cause and effect between the fault or negligence of the defendant and the damage incurred by the plaintiff. 329 SCRA 600. The liability for the negligent conduct of the subordinate is direct and criminally liable for a felony is also civilly liable. 100. G. under Article 103 of the Revised Penal Code. but also for those of persons for whom one is responsible. (b) fault or negligence of the defendant. x x x x x x x x x ‚Employers shall be liable for the damages caused by their employees and household helpers acting within the scope of their as452 18 Petitioner’s Memorandum. p. People. 200 Page 22 Ibid. 2000. 19 This article provides: ‚ART.23 On the other hand. if there is no pre-existing contractual relation between the parties. . but is subject to the defense of due diligence in the selection and supervision of the employee. 145391. Rollo. August 26. 2002. 2180. is obliged to pay for the damage done. 178 SCRA 333.29 Since these two civil liabilities are distinct and independent of there being fault or negligence. employers may be held subsidiarily liable for felonies committed by their employees in the discharge of the latter’s duties. Intermediate Appellate Court.‛ 20 This article provides: ‚Art. Casupanan and Capitulo v. 9. 23 Franco v.25 The enforcement of the judgment against the employer for an latter being action based on a Article 2176 joint does not To require the employee to be insolvent. October 5.Furthermore. Laroya. p.22 This liability attaches when the employees who are convicted of crimes committed in the performance of their work are found to be insolvent and are thus unable to satisfy the civil liability adjudged. Civil Liability of a person guilty of felony.27 These two causes of action (ex delicto or ex quasi delicto) may be availed of. Suyom be instituted against the employer for an employee’s act or omission. the following requisites must be proven: (a) damage suffered by the plaintiff.—Every person 452 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Equitable Leasing Corporation vs.‛ 21 Rafael Reyes Trucking Corporation v. Whoever by act or omission causes damage to another. subject to the caveat28 that the offended party cannot ‚recover damages twice for the same act or omission‛ or under both causes. 388 SCRA 28. an action predicated on quasi delict may _______________ 24 This article provides: ‚ART. primary. The obligation imposed by article 2176 is demandable not only for one’s own acts or omissions. No. 1989. April 3. 103. since the liability of the former is solidary—the statutorily considered tortfeasor. Such fault or negligence. is called a quasi-delict and is governed by the provision of this Chapter.R.26 sustain a claim based on quasi delict. under Article 2176 in relation to Article 218024 of the Civil Code.

the failure to recover in one will not necessarily preclude recovery in the other. it is directly and primarily responsible for the consequences of its operation. the Deed was not registered with the LTO. Responsibility for fault or negligence under the preceding article is entirely separate and distinct from the civil liability arising from negligence under the Penal Code.‛35 the term of the the monthly Lease rental was for the to tractor expire was on stipulated. 2177. 287 v. Court of Appeals.38 insofar The as the Court has consistently and third ruled that. Garcia. on December 9. People.39 In contempla_______________ SCRA 195. 73 Phil. Mendoza v. After a few months. 1991. Barredo v. ‚Art. 91 SCRA 113. a Deed of Sale37 over the tractor was executed by petitioner in favor of Ecatine represented by Edwin Lim. ownership of the subject tractor was to be registered in the name of petitioner. 30 Rafael Reyes Trucking Corpration v. 2177 of the Civil Code which states: ‚ART. 191 Edwin Lim stipulated that ‚it is the intention of the parties to enter into a FINANCE LEASE AGREEMENT. 388. We hold petitioner liable for the deaths and the injuries complained of. are regardless of sales made of a motor vehicle. March 31. x x x x x x x x x‛ Dated June 4.‛ 29 Padilla v. SEPTEMBER 5. Lim completed the payments to cover the full price of the tractor. 1998. Suyom In the instant case. Intermediate Appellate SCRA 718. People. 2002 Page . 129 SCRA 558. Arrieta. because it was the registered owner of the tractor at the time of the accident on July 17. 1990. But the plaintiff cannot recover damages twice for the same act or omission of the defendant. until the value of the vehicle has been fully paid by Edwin Lim.‛ 27 FGU Insurance 23.31 The evidence is clear that the deaths and the injuries suffered by respondents and their kins were due to the fault of the driver of the Fuso tractor. July 8. scheduled March Andamo December 4. supra. 1992. Corporation citing v.30 _______________ 453 Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. November 6. VOL. the Lease Agreement32 between petitioner and 25 Rafael Reyes Trucking Corporation v. 1942.36 Thus. 2194. 28 This caveat is found in Art. the registered owner is the lawful operator public persons concerned. 201 453 31 Ibid. June 29. supra. 1979. 26 Article 2194 Civil Code provides. consequently.34 Further. signed tasks. based on quasi delict under Article 2176 of the Civil Code.each other. However. 1992. 1994. 607. Court of Appeals. in the ‚Lease and Schedule.‛33 Under such scheme. Court. respondents—having failed to recover anything in the criminal case—elected to file a separate civil action for damages. The responsibility of two or more persons who are liable for a quasi-delict is solidary. even though the former are not engaged in any business or industry. 1984.

42 . 35 Annex ‚B-1‛. 2. Tamayo v. May 29. 33 Annex ‚B-1‛. 128705. et al. in the interest of the determination of persons responsible for damages or injuries caused on public highways. 34 Petitioner’s Memorandum. so inconvenient or prejudicial to the public. 182. It is to forestall these circumstances. September 29. 1956. 1984. p. 36. p. 2001. Rollo. de Caldo. April 30. 454 Appeals is misplaced. 215 SCRA 715. 41 BA Finance Corporation v. 40 First Malayan Leasing and Finance Corporation v. which was engaged in a rent-a-car business. Commercial Savings Bank. Vda. 949. 360 SCRA 395. Vda. No. v. 132 SCRA 10. v. Sr. Suyom tion of law. 1992.R. rented out the car. responsibility therefor can be fixed on a definite individual. Court of September 7. 506. November 13. the registered owner of the truck. July 11.43 which we quote hereunder: ‚x x x. Rollo. Ignacio.. which is 454 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. In this case. 2.32 Annex ‚B‛. The main aim of motor vehicle registration is to identify the owner so that if any accident happens. 32. p. 8. Rollo. p. 36 Petitioner’s Memorandum. G. Instances are numerous where vehicles running on public highways caused accidents or injuries to pedestrians or other vehicles without positive identification of the owner or drivers. de Medina v. Montoya v. petitioner’s insistence on FGU Insurance Corp.41 _______________ Osias. or that any damage or injury is caused by the vehicle on the public highways. 94 Phil. Timbol v. 6 SCRA 174.‛44 Further. it does not bind third persons. the registered owner. December 29. 1992. or with very scant means of identification. in FGU Insurance. June 9. 96 Phil. 37 Annex ‚D‛. it could not escape primary liability for the deaths and the injuries arising from the negligence of the driver. Langcay. p. Court of Appeals. The rationale for this rule has been aptly explained in Erezo v. Cresencia. p. 209 SCRA 660. citing Vargas v. 39 MYC-Agro-Industrial Corporation v. Court of Appeals. 105 Phil. The finance-lease agreement between Equitable on the one hand and Lim or Ecatine on the other has already been superseded by the sale. Jepte. that the motor vehicle registration is primarily ordained.40 The same principle applies even if the registered owner of any vehicle does not use it for public service. 8. 34. Rollo. Rollo. 989. 38 Aguilar. 99 Phil. Aquino.45 First. Rollo. p. the registered vehicle owner. 1959. 1953. the actual operator and employer being considered as merely its agent. 1962. p. 202 Page Since Equitable remained the registered owner of the tractor. 34. June 29. In any event. 1955. the owner/operator of record is the employer of the driver.

the registered owner of the vehicle was not held responsible for the negligent acts of the person who rented one of its cars. 1992. has 46 Id. 47 First Malayan Leasing and Finance Corporation v.42 Aguilar. 722. Second. Ecatine. in FGU Insurance. 43 102 Phil. v. 103.46 In this case. per Labrador. Philips. 108. 456 actually sold the truck to Ecatine. is deemed as merely an agent of Equitable. Commercial Savings Bank.48 True. We held that no vinculum juris as employer and employee existed between the owner and the driver. p. J. because Article 2180 of the Civil Code was not applicable. 2002 455 Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. the registered owner of the tractor is considered under the law to be the employer of the driver. Tutor’s actual employer. Equitable. _______________ VOL. 388.. This will effectively prevent respondents from recovering their losses on the basis of the inaction or fault of petitioner in failing to register the sale. 1957. the LTO Certificate of Registration. J. p. . 455 We must stress that the failure of Equitable and/or Ecatine to register the sale with the LTO should not prejudice respondents. SEPTEMBER 5. The non-registration is the fault of petitioner. while the actual operator is deemed to be its agent.47 Thus. While Deed Page does not affect respondents in this quasi delict suit. 45 Maloles II v. it is a party to it. it definitely binds petitioner because. registered has been owner overtaken petitioner as by ‚EQUITABLE the Deed of LEASING Sale this on 456 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. 44 Id. is—for purposes of the law on quasi delict—the employer of Raul Tutor. who have the legal right to rely on the legal principle that the registered vehicle owner is liable for the damages caused by the negligence of the driver. the Lim 1992. Suyom engaged in the business of financing motor vehicle acquisitions. dated ‚5/31/91.. which should thus face the legal consequences thereof. 324 SCRA 172.‛ But the lease agreement between Equitable December between and Ecatine. January 31. September 30. supra. Suyom Second Issue: Moral Damages Petitioner further claims that it is not liable for moral damages. Court of Appeals. the registered owner of the tractor. 2000. per Labrador. the driver of the tractor. 48 Ibid. because respondents failed to establish or show the causal connection or relation 203 CORPORATION/Leased to Edwin Lim. June 9. Petitioner cannot hide behind its allegation that Tutor was the employee of Ecatine. Sr. 209 SCRA 660. which in turn employed Tutor. unlike them.‛ qualifies the name of and 9.

388. but to alleviate the moral suffering undergone by that party by reason of the defendant’s culpable action. v. supra.51 Although incapable of pecuniary computation.60 The evidence gives no ground for doubt that such discretion The was properly is in and judiciously exercised the by the that trial moral court. June 25. Court of Appeals. Inc. damages are not intended to enrich the injured party. Rodriguez.54 which provides for the payment of moral damages in cases of quasi delict. 273 SCRA Raul Tutor. fright. 56 BA Finance Corporation v. who is deemed as petitioner’s employee. Inc. 309 SCRA 141. v. moral damages must nevertheless be somehow proportional to and in approximation of the suffering inflicted.56 respondents have satisfactorily shown the existence of the _______________ 55 Fabre. no proof of pecuniary loss is necessary in order that moral damages may be awarded. Jr. June 17. 1967. v. Reyes.58 Indeed. not to impose a penalty on the wrongdoer. v. 1999. Suyom factual basis for the award57 and its causal connection to the acts of 49 Petitioner’s Memorandum. Court of Appeals. and similar injury unjustly caused a person. social humiliation. 1996. 109. 182 SCRA 899 February 28. Court of Appeals. 145 SCRA 713.52 This is so because moral damages are in the category of an award designed to compensate the claimant for actual injury suffered.. the damages and injuries suffered by respondents were the proximate result of petitioner’s tortious act or omission. the present case falls squarely within the purview of Article 2219 (2). p. 52 Philtranco Services Enterprises. 2002 457 Equitable Leasing Corporation vs. 457 VOL. besmirched reputation. (2) Quasi-delicts causing physical injuries.‛ compensate50 and alleviate in some way the physical suffering. 1997. 2219. 53 Radio Communication v. September 29. Moral damages may be recovered in the following and analogous cases: omission. 15. but are designed to (1) A criminal offense resulting in physical injuries. San Miguel Brewery.55 Having established the liability of petitioner as the registered owner of the vehicle. 1986. p. serious anxiety. November 25.53 Viewed as an action for quasi delict.59 Further. x x x x x x x x x. SEPTEMBER 5.49 Moral damages are not punitive in nature. mental anguish. Rollo.62 Page 1990. Court of Appeals.between the factual basis of their claim and their wrongful act or 54 ‚Art. 51 Expertravel & Tours. wounded feelings. July 26. 259 SCRA 426. the amount of indemnity being left to the discretion of the court. Inc. moral shock.61 award fact consistent with rule 204 562. . 21 SCRA 292. if any. 50 Dee Hua Liong Electrical Equipment Corp.

‛ 58 Philippine Veterans Bank v. 60 ‚ART. 2216. 1967. 59 San Miguel Brewery. 2217. Moral damages include physical suffering. 388 SCRA 445(2002)] AFFIRMED. may be adjudicated. NLRC. supra. moral shock. 321 SCRA 584 [1999]) ——o0o—— [Equitable Leasing Corporation vs.—The basis. fright. for holding an employer solidarity responsible for the negligence of its employee is found in Article 2180 of the Civil Code. Though incapable of pecuniary computation. mental anguish. 317 SCRA 510. liquidated or exemplary damages. serious anxiety. Suyom. according to the circumstances of each case. Court of Appeals. nominal. SO ORDERED. Dee Hua Liong Electrical Equipment Corp v.. judgment affirmed. 458 . Puno (Chairman).‛ 205 Page 61 Salao v. moral damages may be recovered if they are the proximate result of the defendant’s wrongful act or omission. 1998. besmirched reputation. On leave. Reyes. supra. JJ. v. 21 SCRA 292.WHEREFORE. J. No proof of pecuniary loss is necessary in order that moral. Corona and Carpio-Morales. Magno. the Petition is DENIED and the assailed Decision 458 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Hugo vs. Costs against petitioner. Sandoval-Gutierrez. October 26.. Court of Appeals. _______________ 57 ‚ART. Petition denied. social humiliation. 62 Philippine Airlines v. Court of Appeals. concur. temperate. September 29. Inc. and similar injury. is left to the discretion of the court. 284 SCRA 493. January 22. (Ramos vs. 1999. Court of Appeals Note. wounded feelings. except liquidated ones. The assessment of such damages.

OCTOBER 17. A dismissed employee is not required to prove his innocence of the charges leveled against him by his employer. However. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION.—It is a basic principle that in the dismissal of employees. This is in * THIRD DIVISION. The determination of the existence and sufficiency of a just cause must be VOL. generally accorded not only respect but even finality. A dismissed employee is not required to prove his innocence of the charges leveled against him by his employer. JR. vs. which must be complied with even with respect to seamen on board a vessel. who are deemed to have acquired expertise in matters within their respective jurisdictions. Factual acquired expertise findings of labor officials. 569. JR. petitioners. there is a need to review the records to determine which of them should be preferred as more conformable to evidentiary facts. The minimum requirement of due process in termination proceedings. October 17. Labor Law. Illegal Dismissals. with fairness and in good faith and after observing due Appeals. Termination of Employment. 415 206 consonance with the guarantee of security of tenure in the Constitution and in the Labor Code.R. when the findings of the LA and the NLRC are inconsistent with that of the CA. Termination of Employment. one of which is when the findings of fact of the labor officials on which the conclusion is based are not supported by substantial evidence.* NFD INTERNATIONAL MANNING AGENTS and A/S VULCANUS OSLO. ILAGAN.—Factual findings of labor officials. The Court finds that the present case falls under the above-mentioned exceptions..exercised process. respondents. the burden of proof rests upon the employer to show that the dismissal is for a just and valid cause and failure to do so would necessarily mean that the dismissal is not justified. are generally accorded not only respect but even finality. as in the instant case. and CONSTANTINO CO. JOSE I. 2008. Moreover. Labor Law. 165389. consists of notice to the employees opportunity _______________ intended to be dismissed and the grant to them of an G. who are deemed in matters within their respective to have are jurisdictions. the rule is not without exceptions. 2008 Page . deduced facts adduced evidence. No. Another exception inferred is or when it is from perceived bare that far too in much is concluded.

a complete report should be sent to manning agency. 416 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED NFD International Manning Agents vs. Moral damages are recoverable where the dismissal of the employee was at416 Commission to present their own side on the alleged offense or misconduct. the Court still sustains the finding of the CA that the dismissal of private respondents and their companions was done in bad faith. An erring seaman is given a written notice of the charge against him and is afforded an opportunity to explain or defend himself. the employer must furnish the worker sought to be dismissed with two written notices before termination of employment can be legally effected. 392 SCRA 371 (2002). good customs or public policy. v. i. contrary to morals. supported by substantial evidence of the findings. Moral Damages. the ‚two-notice rule‛ is indicated. or was done in a manner contrary to morals. Same. Mira. a complete report should be sent to the manning agency. Moral damages are recoverable where the dismissal of the employee was attended by bad faith or fraud or constituted an act oppressive to labor. Same. Inc.e. then a written notice of penalty and the reasons for it shall be furnished the erring seafarer. exemplary policy requires that these damages acts must are be proper when suppressed the and dismissal was effected in a wanton. Damages. On and public the other hand.—While the Court agrees with petitioners that there is no evidence to prove that force.. Seafarers. supported by substantial evidence of the findings. Moreover.—Explaining the notice requirements under Section 17. consists of notice to the employees intended to be dismissed and the grant to them of an opportunity to present led their to the own side on the alleged offense or misconduct. good customs or public policy. Same. the total absence of any prior written notice charges against defend against such charges and a written notice of the subsequent decision of the Ship Master to terminate their employment establish the arbitrary and Page 207 . which management’s decision to terminate. but just the same. It is only in the exceptional case of clear and existing danger to the the safety of the crew or vessel that the required notices are dispensed with. and (2) the subsequent notice after due hearing which informs the employee of the employers’ decision to dismiss him. violence or intimidation was employed to effect the disembarkation of the Filipino seamen. Should sanctions be imposed. National Labor Relations Same. In the instant case. discouraged. but just the same. unceremoniously the opportunity directed to to disembark themselves from their vessel. good customs or public policy. (1) a notice which apprises the employee of the particular acts or omissions for which his dismissal is sought.—The minimum requirement of due process in termination proceedings. it is undisputed that respondents and the other Filipino seamen were actually engaged in the performance of their assigned tasks aboard M/T Lady Helene and were even rendering overtime of the work when they were them. or was done in a manner contrary to morals. which must be complied with even with respect to seamen on board a vessel. oppressive or malevolent manner. To meet the requirements of due process. which led to the management’s decision to terminate. National Labor Relations Commission tended by bad faith or fraud or constituted an act oppressive to labor. this Court held in Skippers Pacific. thus entitling them to the award of moral and exemplary damages. arbitrary and oppressive to labor. It is only in the exceptional case of clear and existing danger to the safety of the crew or vessel that the required notices are dispensed with.415 NFD International Manning Agents vs. that: x x x under Section 17 of what is termed the Standard Format.

oppressive

character

of

the

dismissal

from

employment

of

private

VOL. 569, OCTOBER 17, 2008 417 NFD International Manning Agents vs. National Labor Relations

respondents and their companions. PETITION for review on certiorari of the decision and resolution of the Court of Appeals. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. Ma. Fe Concepcion Guirnalda for petitioners. Capuyan & Quimpo for respondents. AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ, J.: Assailed in the present Petition for Review on Certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court is the June 21, 2004 Decision1 and September 14, 2004 Resolution2 of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. SP No. 78870. The facts of the case are as follows: Jose I. Ilagan, Jr. and Constantino Co, Jr. (private respondents) were among 21 Filipino seamen hired by herein petitioner NFD International Manning Agents, Inc. (NFD) to work on board the _______________

Commission chemical tanker M/T Lady Helene, a vessel owned and operated by

petitioner A/S Vulcanus Oslo (Vulcanus), NFD’s foreign principal. On February 11, 1997, while M/T Lady Helene was at Island View Port, Durban, South Africa, Ship Master Captain Steiner Andersen dismissed the 21 Filipino seamen, including herein private respondents, from their employment. They were subsequently repatriated, arriving in the Philippines on February 15, 1997. On March 3, 1997, the NFD 21 in filed before the Adjudication (POEA), they desert October the 12, that to Office a were of the of and the by

Philippine complaint mutiny, POEA conspiracy.

Overseas against

Employment

Administration alleging

disciplinary guilty 1999, filed vessel

seamen an

insubordination, Subsequently, Adjudication

desertion/attempting Order3 the dismissed

dated

Office

disciplinary

complaint

NFD, ordering that the names of the 21 seamen be removed from the POEA watchlist. Meanwhile, filed with on the illegal May 6, 1997, Labor City, and private respondents, together with eight

(complainants) of the 21 seamen whose employments were terminated, 1 Penned by Justice Eliezer R. De los Santos with the concurrence of Justices Ruben T. Reyes and Arturo D. Brion (now both members of this Court), Rollo, p. 72. 2 417 CA Rollo, p. 341. National in dismissal Relations a damages Commission for against (NLRC), and National of Vulcanus, Capital contract, Region Quezon Complaint4 wrongful NFD breach

contending that: they were summarily dismissed from their employment without just and valid cause and in gross violation of the terms of their employment contracts; they were forcibly disembarked from the vessel; at the time of their discharge, and up to the filing of their complaint, they had not been paid their accrued salaries, guaranteed overtime pay and leave pay; for their summary dismissal, forcible disembarkation and subsequent repatriation, they seek recovery of their unpaid wages and

Page

208

other benefits as well as moral and exemplary damages and attorney’s fees. In their Position Paper,5 NFD and Vulcanus (petitioners) contended: The complainants were validly and lawfully dismissed _______________

to

any

of

the

amounts NFD

which for the

they

sought

to

recover, by

instead, the latter

they in

should

reimburse

expenses

incurred

connection with their valid dismissal and subsequent repatriation to the Philippines. In their Reply to Respondents’ Position Paper,6 complainants averred that no single specific act of insubordination, desertion or attempt to desert the vessel or refusal to sail with the vessel was attributed to them; the Filipino crewman who reportedly instigated the alleged mutiny was among

3 CA Rollo, p. 151. 4 Id., at pp. 21-29. 5 CA Rollo, pp. 68-83. 418

those absolved of any liability by petitioners in exchange for a waiver or quitclaim cases petitioners which to he may them have was had a against from the a latter; resorted the to disciplinary by for herein illegal filed against tactical move filing

preempt

complainants

complaint

dismissal; nothing was alleged and no evidence was presented to prove that complainants were accorded the benefit of due process before they were terminated from their employment. In their Rejoinder,7 private respondents contended that the Affidavit8 of

418 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED NFD International Manning Agents vs. National Labor Relations

Anselmo V. Rodriguez, NFD President and General Manager, contained several attachments proving the illegal acts of the complainants; that it was an act of desperation on the part of complainants to put color to the action of NFD in promptly reporting to _______________ employment to for desert their the in acts of ‚mutiny, and trip insubordination, among to 6 Id., at pp. 84-94. 7 Id., at pp. 95-97. 8 Annex ‚F,‛ Rollo, p. 85. 419

Commission from their

desertion/attempting failing to join M/T

vessel its

conspiracy or

themselves together with the other Filipino seamen in refusing and or Lady Helene next destination Mauritius without just and valid cause‛; contrary to complainants’ claim, they were not forcibly disembarked from the vessel; four out of the ten complainants had already withdrawn their complaints; out of the remaining six complainants, and rejoin five it were in its given next the trip option to to return the to M/T of Lady the Helene Mauritius; filing

209
Page

complaint was merely an afterthought of the complainants after NFD filed cases for disciplinary action against them; complainants were not entitled VOL. 569, OCTOBER 17, 2008

419 NFD International Manning Agents vs. National Labor Relations

_______________

Commission the POEA the illegal acts committed by the latter; that, on the contrary, the complaint for illegal dismissal, which was filed three months after their termination from employment took place, was the complainants’ belated move to serve as a smokescreen for their illegal acts. On January the 30, 1998, the on Labor the Arbiter that (LA) the rendered judgment were

9

See Labor Arbiter’s Decision, CA Rollo, pp. 98-113.

10 Id., at pp. 114-125. 11 Id., at pp. 163-186. 12 Id., at pp. 185-186. 13 Id., at pp. 188-201. 14 Id., at pp. 202-210. 15 CA Rollo, pp. 211-219. 16 Id., at pp. 220-221.

dismissing

Complaint

ground

complainants

lawfully dismissed for just cause.9 Complainants filed an appeal with the NLRC.10 On August 30, 2001, the NLRC promulgated a Decision,11 the

dispositive portion of which reads as follows: ‚WHEREFORE, the assailed decision is set aside. The respondents

420

[herein petitioners] are directed to jointly and severally pay the appellants complainants[herein private respondents and their companions] their wages for the payment of the unexpired portion of their respective contracts, and unpaid wages including moral and exemplary damages of P50,000.00 each and ten percent (10%) attorney’s fees of the total amount awarded. The complaint of Alcesar Baylosis is hereby dismissed in view of the settlement of the monetary claims effected on July 17, 1997. SO ORDERED.‛12 Herein petitioners then filed a Motion for Reconsideration.13 On April 9, 2002, the NLRC came up with the herein assailed Resolution14 which granted petitioners’ motion and reinstated the Decision dated January 30, 1998 of the LA in their favor. Complainants filed a Motion for Reconsideration15 but it was denied by the NLRC in its Order16 promulgated on June 16, 2003. 420 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED NFD International Manning Agents vs. National Labor Relations

Commission Thereafter, five out of the ten original complainants, to wit: Jose I.

Ilagan, Jr. (herein private respondent), Reynaldo G. Digma, Francisco C. Octavio, Constantino D. Co, Jr. (herein private respondent) and Jesus G. Domingo filed a special civil action for certiorari with the CA assailing the April 9, 2002 Resolution and the June 16, 2003 Order of the NLRC.17

Page

210

On September 17, 2003, the CA issued a Resolution18 denying due course to and dismissing the petition for certiorari on the ground that only one out of the five petitioners therein signed the verification and certificate showing against that such forum-shopping petitioner was attached duly to the petition to sign without for and any in authorized

20 Id., at p. 233. 21 CA Rollo, p. 297. 22 Id., at pp. 308-318. 421

behalf of the other petitioners. On October 3, 2002, herein private respondents filed a Motion for

Reconsideration with Motion to Exclude Reynaldo G. Digma, Francisco C. Octavio and Jesus G. Domingo as petitioners on the ground that the above-named seamen were still abroad by reason of their employment.19 In a Resolution20 dated October 16, 2003, the CA reinstated the petition insofar as herein private respondents were concerned. On June 21, 2004, the CA promulgated the presently assailed Decision in favor of private respondents, the dispositive portion of which reads: ‚WHEREFORE, NLRC are premises considered, and the SET petition ASIDE. is The GRANTED. NLRC The VOL. 569, OCTOBER 17, 2008 421 NFD International Manning Agents vs. National Labor Relations

Commission Hence, the present petition with the following assignment of errors: I. THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED GRAVE ERROR IN

resolution and order dated April 9, 2002 and June 16, 2003 of the hereby ANNULLED decision dated August 30, 2001 is hereby REINSTATED. SO ORDERED.‛21 (Italics supplied) Herein petitioners filed a Motion for Reconsideration22 but the CA denied it in its Resolution of September 14, 2004. _______________

DISREGARDING THE FINDINGS OF THE LABOR ARBITER AND THE NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, WHICH FINDINGS ARE SUPPORTED BY SUBSTANTIAL EVIDENCE. II. THE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED GRAVE ERROR IN HOLDING THAT PETITIONERS THAT FAILED TO PRESENT WERE SUBSTANTIAL FOR EVIDENCE JUST AND PROVING RESPONDENTS DISMISSED

VALID CAUSE. 17 Id., at pp. 2-20. THE EVIDENCE ON RECORD PROVES THAT RESPONDENTS WERE GUILTY OF MUTINY, INSUBORDINATION, DESERTION/AT-TEMPT-ING TO DESERT THE VESSEL AND CONSPIRACY WITH THE OTHER FILIPINO SEAFARERS IN REFUSING AND/OR FAILING TO JOIN M/T LADY HELENE IN ITS NEXT TRIP OR DESTINATION.

211
Page

18 Id., at p. 224. 19 Id., at p. 225.

III. THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS ERRED IN HOLDING THAT [RESPONDENTS’] TERMINATION WAS EFFECTED WITHOUT DUE PROCESS OF LAW. IV. THE HONORABLE COURT COMMITTED GRAVE ERROR IN HOLDING THAT [RESPONDENTS’] TERMINATION WAS ATTENDED BY BAD FAITH OR DONE CONTRARY TO MORALS, GOOD CUSTOMS OR PUBLIC POLICY.23 The petition has no merit. The basic issue to be resolved in the instant case is whether private respondents’ termination from their employment was valid. There are two requisites which must be complied with by an employer for a valid dismissal of employees, to wit: (1) the dismissal must be for a just or authorized cause; and (2) the employee _______________

must be afforded due process, i.e., he must be given opportunity to be heard and to defend himself.24 Anent the first requisite, it is a basic principle that in the dismissal of employees, the burden of proof rests upon the employer to show that the dismissal is for a just and valid cause and failure to do so would necessarily mean that the dismissal is not justified.25 This is in consonance with the guarantee of security of tenure in the Constitution and in the Labor Code. A dismissed employee is not required to prove his innocence of the charges leveled against him by his employer.26 The determination of the existence and sufficiency of a just cause must be exercised with fairness and in good faith and after observing due process.27 The Court is not persuaded by petitioners’ contentions in its first and second assigned errors that the CA should have accorded respect and finality to the findings of fact and conclusions of the LA as these are supported by substantial evidence; that petitioners, in fact, were able to present substantial evidence to prove that private respondents were guilty of mutiny, insubordination, desertion/attempt to desert their vessel and conspiracy with the other Filipino seamen in refusing to join said vessel in its next trip. Factual findings in of labor officials, who within their are deemed to have are acquired generally

23 Rollo, pp. 35-36. 422

expertise

matters

respective

jurisdictions,

accorded not only respect but even finality. However, the rule is not without exceptions, one of which is when the findings of fact of the labor officials on which the conclusion is based _______________

422

212

SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED NFD International Manning Agents vs. National Labor Relations

24 Skippers United Pacific, Inc. v. Maguad, G.R. No. 166363, August 15, 2006, 498 SCRA 639, 658.

Page

Commission

25 De Jesus v. National Labor Relations Commission, G.R. No. 151158, August 17, 2007, 530 SCRA 489, 498; Ranises v. National Labor Relations Commission, G.R. No. 111914, September 24, 1996, 262 SCRA 371, 376. 26 Philippine Transmarine Carriers, Inc. v. Carilla, G.R. No. 157975,

‚[Herein its next

petitioners] trip.

charged

[herein for

private the

respondents]

for

mutiny, Capt.

insubordination, desertion and conspiracy in refusing to join the vessel in However, except disagreement between Andersen and Engine Fitter Castillo, when the latter refused to resume his work in the Engine Room wherein the other Filipino crew sided with Castillo, there is no proof showing the alleged mutinous and concerted actions of the [private respondents] against Capt. Andersen. There is also the glaring absence of corroborative statements of other officers or crew on board attesting that [private respondents] participated directly or indirectly to any wrong doing, or even intervened in the quarrel between Andersen and Castillo. The records fail to establish clearly the commission of any threat, or any serious misconduct which would justify

June 26, 2007, 525 SCRA 586, 594. 27 Id. 423

VOL. 569, OCTOBER 17, 2008 423 NFD International Manning Agents vs. National Labor Relations

[private respondents’] dismissal.‛31 _______________

Commission are not supported by substantial evidence.28 Another exception is when it is perceived that far too much is concluded, inferred or deduced from bare facts adduced in evidence.29 Moreover, when the findings of the LA and the NLRC are inconsistent with that of the CA, as in the instant case, there is a need to review the records to determine which of them should be preferred as more conformable to evidentiary facts.30 The Court finds that the present case falls under the above-mentioned exceptions. After a review of the arguments and evidence of the parties, the Court sustains the findings and conclusions of the CA, the same being in accord with the facts and law of the case.

28 Felix

v.

National

Labor

Relations

Commission,

G.R.

No.

148256,

November 17, 2004, 442 SCRA, 465, 477. 29 Felix v. National Labor Relations Commission, supra note 28, at p. 477. 30 Portuguez 169570, March v. 2, GSIS 2007, Family 517 Bank SCRA (Comsavings 309, 319; Bank), G.R. v. No.

Macahilig

National

Labor Relations Commission, G.R. No. 158095, November 23, 2007, 538 SCRA 375, 383. 31 CA Rollo, p. 296. 424

213

The Court agrees with the following findings and conclusion of the CA, to wit: 424 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED

Page

In the absence of substantial evidence. 2008 425 NFD International Manning Agents vs. Inc. there is no record in the logbook or journal of the ship to indicate that the 21 Filipino seamen.NFD International Manning Agents vs. charges Page private respondents and the other Filipino seamen.‛33 Moreover. OCTOBER 17. insubordination.. and punishable under the ‚Table of Offense and Corresponding Administrative Penalties of the Standard Employment Contract Governing Employment of All Filipino Seamen on Commission as a result of the misunderstanding that happened between the Ship Master and a Filipino crew member. Petitioners’ claim that private respondents and their fellow Filipino seamen were guilty of conspiracy in committing mutiny. must be established by clear. the charge of inciting mutiny/refusal to sail cannot be given credence. including herein private respondents who were terminated from their employment. such as in the instant case.‛34 through telex messages. petitioners . no other proof. The absence of competent evidence or corroborative statements of other officers or crew on board attesting to the fact that complainants have participated directly or indirectly. Pertinent portions of the POEA Order reads: ‚Aside from telexes and telefax messages exchanged between VOL. 1999 Order dismissing the disciplinary complaint filed by NFD against herein private respondents and their companions. thus: ‚We also noted that [herein petitioners’] various charges against the [private respondents] were bereft of factual details showing the alleged mutinous and concerted actions of herein [private respondents] against the ship captain. 34 CA Rollo. 33 Id. such as official logbook extracts. and incontrovertible pieces of evidence. the above-quoted findings of the CA and the NLRC are 32 Should be ‚Castillo‛ per Records. attempting to desert their by vessel and refusing to sail with from of the the NFD. 156-157. National Labor Relations Indeed. 2001 Decision. being a serious offense. General presented was Aside Manager to communications. sent by representatives of petitioner Vulcanus President proof documentary hearing or substantiate Moreover. 180. to any wrongdoing or intervened in the quarrel of the Ship Captain with Fitter Bautista32 deters us in considering the said charges with probity. strong. entry and/or proper documentation in the vessel’s logbook/journal. pp. Had respondents committed the offense charged. no competent against did not 214 Board Ocean Going Vessels‛ for two to three year suspension. National Labor Relations complainant NFD International Manning Agents. was adduced in support of the complaint. threatened to cease and desist from working and to abandon their vessel _______________ Commission which affirmed the earlier finding of the NLRC in its August 30. at p. this should at least deserve attention. Inciting mutiny. No record of any investigation presented. and its principal AS Vulcanus which are all self-serving in nature. 569. the vessel is not supported and the substantial and was evidence. 425 consistent with the findings of the POEA in its October 12.

dated February 12. from a Captain Helge Grotle whose position at Vulcanus was also not indicated. It is not enough for the LA to declare in his Decision that ‚the established facts of the case.36 (3) telex message. dated February 11. standing alone and uncorroborated by any other competent evidence. However. and that ‚some other crew‛ have communicated their intention to leave if Castillo would leave. 1997. do not constitute substantial proof that herein private proves respondents their from M/T are indeed First. whose connection NFD with or position had at Vulcanus no solution was to not their informing that there been Castillo has not left the vessel. National Labor Relations Page Commission . 1997. Hovland indicated. dated February 28. Petitioners insist that the findings and conclusions of the LA should be respected. the Court finds that the LA failed to cite substantial evidence to support his conclusions. It is true that the LA cited documents consisting of the following: (1) telex message. and that a Filipino crewman named 426 messages officer of representatives The hearsay because they did not come directly from the Ship Master or Helene. 1997. from the NFD President and General Manager addressed to all NFD officers and crew warning them of the possible consequences. these documents. of On the of and contrary. 1997.38 (5) letter from the NFD President and General Manager. or that ‚records show that complainants were discharged from their employment for committing acts of mutiny. however. and advising them to refrain from refusing to work and to treat their problem intelligently and not to involve others. dated February 11. should they decide to leave their vessel to accompany Castillo. guilty the of mutiny. 1997. sent by a certain Marianne D. and that according to Grotle. However. informing NFD that the Ship Master of M/T Lady Helene decided to dismiss its crew for refusal to go to sea with the vessel. petitioners failed to present any telex message. dated February 12. insubordination and desertion and/or attempting to desert the vessel as well as conspiracy among themselves in refusing to join M/T Lady Helene in its next trip to Mauritius without just and valid cause x x x‛ without specifying the evidence upon which he derived his conclusions. which included herein petitioners. reveal that complainant[s] were lawfully dismissed for just cause‛.present the Ship Master or any member of the ship’s crew in order to validate or verify the truth regarding the charge against the 21 Filipino seamen.37 (4) telex message. supposed Lady evidence consisting Vulcanus telex problems. All that were presented by petitioners were allegations which they claimed to have gathered from information provided by the Ship Master that herein private respondents and their fellow Filipino seamen were guilty of the various acts of which they were accused to have committed. the option to return to the vessel on the ground that these seamen were not involved in the alleged mutiny.39 However. testimony or _______________ 215 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED NFD International Manning Agents vs. the NFD in it are these innocence. informing the POEA about the dismissal of the 21 Filipino seamen on grounds of mutiny and conspiracy for their concerted refusal to work and join the vessel in going to its next destination. the act of the crew constituted mutiny. information contained communications were merely based on the alleged report or message 426 which came from the Ship Master. from Captain Andersen informing NFD of his decision to give 14 of the Filipino seamen.35 (2) telex message.

Hence. which act. OCTOBER 17. National Labor Relations 216 subject Decision reinstated Decision. consists of notice to the employees intended to be dismissed and the grant to them of an opportunity to present their own side on the alleged offense or misconduct. they were given the option to return to the vessel if they wished to. 278. Second. any evidence as basis for adopting the factual findings of the LA. The next question is whether there was compliance with the second requisite of a valid dismissal which is due process. according to petitioners. Even the of NLRC. which led to 428 428 petition. National Labor Relations The Court does not agree with petitioners’ asseverations in their third assigned error that in dismissing respondents from their employment.35 CA Rollo. Commission even an affidavit of the Ship Master or any other crew member or officer of the subject vessel to prove that private respondents and their companions were guilty of the acts with which they were charged. dismissed the complaint of NFD. August cite SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED NFD International Manning Agents vs.. 30. Page Commission . 273. the lettercomplaint filed by NFD with the POEA was later found baseless as the POEA. Third.. 38 Id. in its Order dated October 12. p. 569. the telex message dated February 12.. 427 The Court also finds that in their pleadings before the LA. is recognized under the provisions POEA Standard Employment Contract. at p. The minimum requirement of due process in termination proceedings. the CA was correct in reinstating the NLRC August 30. 39 Id. 275. petitioners failed to cite any direct and substantial evidence to support their claim that private respondents and their companions were guilty of mutiny and conspiracy. 2001 Decision finding that petitioners failed to discharge their burden of proving that the dismissal of private respondents was for a just and valid cause. VOL. in fact. 36 Id. 2008 427 NFD International Manning Agents vs. 2001 specific which must be complied with even with respect to seamen on board a vessel. p. at p. the CA and this Court. at p. 2002. 274. herein and in its subsequent wherein LA’s it the Resolution set aside did dated its not April 9. the NLRC. 1999. 1997 which came from the Ship Master himself established that private respondents and 12 of their companions were not guilty of mutiny as. the Ship Master simply acted within his management of rights the in order to protect the safety of the vessel and its crew. 37 CA Rollo. 276.

663. C. This information shall be entered in the ship’s logbook. the Master is convinced that imposition of a penalty is justified..41 Petitioner maintains that the Ship Master is allowed to dismiss an erring seafarer without notice under Section 17. Section 17 of the Revised Standard Employment against the seafarer concerned.the management’s decision to terminate. at p. 055-96 made effective on January 1. 663. An entry on the investigation shall be entered into the ship’s logbook. the employer must furnish the worker sought to be dismissed with two written notices before termination of employment can be legally effected. National Labor Relations Commission notice of penalty and the reasons for it to the seafarer. Inc. Maguad. Inc. Dismissal furnishing the for just cause with may a be effected of by the if Master doing without so will seafarer notice dismissal prejudice the safety of the crew or the vessel. B. 429 VOL. Page . giving the seafarer the opportunity to explain or 217 defend himself against the charges. 1997. 41 Skippers United Pacific. as in cases of mutiny. DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURES The Master shall comply with the following disciplinary procedures against an erring seafarer: A. The Master shall send a complete report to the manning agency substantiated by witnesses. testimonies and any other documents in support thereof. v. v. OCTOBER 17. to wit: Section 17. (Emphasis supplied) Under paragraph D. with copies furnished to the Philippine agent. D. the Ship Master is excused from furnishing a seafarer with the required notice of dismissal if doing so will prejudice the safety of the crew and the vessel.40 To meet the requirements of due process. 569. and (2) the subsequent notice after due hearing which informs the employee of the employers’ decision to dismiss him. supra note 24. 2. (1) a notice which apprises the employee of the particular acts or omissions for which his dismissal is sought. The Master shall furnish the seafarer with a written notice containing the following: 1. The Master or his authorized representative shall conduct the investigation or hearing. paragraph D of the Revised Standard Employment Terms and Conditions Governing the Employment of Filipino Seafarers on Board Ocean-Going Vessels42 issued by the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA). after the investigation or hearing. Date.e. Maguad. the Master shall issue a written Terms and Conditions Governing the Employment of Filipino Seafarers on Board Ocean-Going Vessels. supra note 24. Section 17 sets forth the disciplinary procedures against erring seafarers. If. 42 POEA Memorandum Circular No. at p. time and place for a formal investigation of the charges _______________ 40 Skippers United Pacific. Grounds for the charges as listed in Section 31 of this Contract. i. 2008 429 NFD International Manning Agents vs.

Should sanctions be imposed. respondents and the other Filipino seamen were verbally ordered to disembark from the vessel and were repatriated to the Philippines without being given written notice of the reasons why. arbitrary and oppressive to labor. 44 Id. 382. the Court still sustains the finding of the CA that the dismissal of private 43 G.‛44 NFD International Manning Agents vs.. 392 SCRA 371. Neither was there evidence to show that private respondents and their companions were given opportunity to answer the charges against them. good customs or public policy. Inc. in the instant case. Even if the Ship Master was justified in dispensing with the notice requirements. they posed a clear and present danger to the vessel and its crew which would have justified the Ship Master in dispensing with the required notices. but just the same. this Court held in Skippers Pacific. 2002. No. v. Thus. Instead. Anent the last assigned error. petitioners should have complied with Section 17A quoted above. While the Court agrees with petitioners that there is no evidence to prove that force. It is only in the exceptional case of clear and existing danger to with. the Court sustains the findings of the CA that private respondents and the other complainants were not given the benefit of procedural due process before they were terminated from their employment. supported by substantial evidence of the findings. An erring seaman is given a written notice of the charge against him and is afforded an opportunity to explain or defend himself. National Labor Relations Commission it was essential that his decision to dismiss the Filipino seamen should have been entered in the ship’s logbook. and that a complete report. still. violence or intimidation was employed to effect the disembarkation of the Filipino seamen. There being no mutiny. substantiated by witnesses. 144314. employee damages recoverable where dismissal Page . The record of this case is bereft of any such entry in the ship’s logbook or journal and of any report and supporting documents. _______________ stating the particular acts or omissions constituting the grounds for their termination. in any other manner. The records reveal that Section 17A was not complied with by the Ship Master. testimonies and any other documents in support thereof. 430 218 430 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED respondents and their companions was done in bad faith. Mira.Explaining the notice requirements under Section 17. November 21.R.43 that: ‚x x x under Section 17 of what is termed the Standard Format. petitioners failed to establish that private respondents and their companions were guilty of mutiny or that. then a written notice of penalty and the reasons for it shall be furnished the erring seafarer. Petitioners and failed to present evidence were to prove that private notices respondents their fellow complainants served written (Emphasis supplied) However. at p. the ‚two-notice rule‛ is indicated. thus Moral entitling them are to the award of moral the and exemplary of the damages. a complete report should be sent to the the safety of the crew or vessel that the required notices are dispensed manning agency. contrary to morals. duly sent to the manning agency.

R. the opportunity to defend themselves against such charges and a written notice of the subsequent decision of the Ship Master to 219 terminate their employment establish the arbitrary and oppressive character of the dismissal from employment of private respondents and their companions. Machine 431 Guzman v. SP No. 2004 in CA-G. 2004 and September 14. the total absence of any prior written notice of the charges against them. exemplary damages are proper when the dismissal was effected in a wanton.. Carpio-Morales.. Reiner Pacific International Shipping. OCTOBER 17. Inc. Note. judgment and resolution affirmed.—The ship’s logbook is the official record of a ship’s voyage which its captain is obligated by law to keep—the entries made in the ship’s logbook by a person performing duty required by law are prima facie evidence of the facts stated therein. and public policy requires that these acts must be suppressed and discouraged. 529 SCRA 413 [2007]) ——o0o—— [NFD International Manning Agents vs.46 In the instant case. oppressive or malevolent manner. 569 SCRA 414(2008)] December Burger VOL. good customs or public policy.was attended by bad faith or fraud or constituted an act oppressive to labor. JJ. 2007. or was done in a manner contrary to morals.** Chico-Nazario and 45 De 167701. The Decision and Resolution of the Court of Appeals dated June 21. National 12. Ynares-Santiago (Chairperson). 2008 431 NFD International Manning Agents vs. the instant Petition is DENIED for lack of merit. No.45 On the _______________ WHEREFORE. Labor 540 Relations SCRA 21. it is seamen were undisputed engaged that respondents and in the performance the other Filipino of their assigned actually tasks aboard M/T Lady Helene and were even rendering overtime work when they were unceremoniously directed to disembark from their vessel. Petition denied.R. 78870 are AFFIRMED. Nachura. Page . National Labor Relations Commission. 37. concur. (Sadagnot vs. Commission. Moreover. National Labor Relations Commission other hand. SO ORDERED. Aguilar G. v. 569.

* RAFAEL PAGSUYUIN and PEREGRINA PAGSUYUIN-SUBIDO. No. Parol Evidence. Same. Civil Procedure. the trial court has a first hand advantage to assess the value to be given the testimony of a witness. Cantiveros. the demeanor. et al. Sarol. Intermediate Appellate Court G. that ‚it is a fundamental rule in criminal as well as in civil cases that in the matter of credibility of witnesses the findings of the trial court are given great weight and the highest degree of respect by the appellate court (People v. of evidence and have have more not made than Salud been convincing private which preponderant. 139 SCRA 125 [1985]). Same. Same. axiomatic factual findings of the trial court and Court of Appeals are entitled to _______________ writing the exclusive evidence of the agreement therein stated is not applicable when the validity of such agreement is the fact in dispute. Indeed. FEBRUARY 6. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT and SALUD PAGSUYUIN. as early as 1919 in the case of Bough v. 1991. * SECOND DIVISION.—As can be clearly gleaned from the foregoing.R. Same. IAC. February 6.VOL. vs. parol evidence may be introduced to establish illegality or fraud. 40 Phil. intimidation. this Court laid down the rule that where the validity of the agreement is the issue. convincing and more than merely preponderant. Intermediate Appellate Court great respect (Vda. Same. violence or undue influence (Art. 220 Same. Same. no instrument is so sacred when tainted with fraud as to scrutiny evidence. Private by evidence respondent’s clear. de Roxas v.—While the place writing it itself beyond may the have been of accompanied extrinsic by the most This solemn evidence formalities. 1330. Same. the rule making a writing the exclusive evidence of the agreement therein stated. 193. 209. the probability or improbability of the testimony. petitioners. is not applicable when the validity of such agreement is the fact in dispute. It is a fundamental rule in criminal as well as of in civil cases by the that in the matter of credibility it is of witnesses that the the findings of the trial court are given great weight and the highest degree respect appellate court. The rule making a made out a case of fraud by evidence clear. In fact. A contract may be annulled where the consent of one of the contracting parties was procured by mistake. respondents. 72121.—The and two rebutted by testimonies instrumental the petitioners respondent Page Pagsuyuin satisfactorily witnesses Rafael Pagsuyuin. New Civil Code). 548 548 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Pagsuyuin vs. No Instrument is so sacred when tainted with fraud as to place it beyond the scrutiny of extrinsic evidence. case of fraud her Same. fraud.—Moreover. Same. unquestionably because the trial judge is in a superior position to gauge the credibility of those who take the witness seat before him. the manner of testifying. overcomes the known presumption fraus est odiosa et non praesumenda. He has the opportunity to size up the appearance. of the witnesses. Remedial Law. Same. 143 SCRA 77 [1987]). 1991 547 Pagsuyuin vs. have . out a merely Same.

et al. FEBRUARY 6.G. damages with preliminary injunction. concurred in by Justices Jorge Coquia. private in the then a of acquintance loan respondent amount Pagsuyuin secure P165. Gregoria B.‛ for annulment of document. 549 VOL.—As shown in the records of the case. J. are in the category of an award designed to compensate the claimant for actual injury suffered and not to impose a penalty on the wrongdoer. pp.00 with the Manila Banking Corporation at Olongapo City upon security of a real estate mortgage of property belonging to Salud Pagsuyuin consisting of two (2) two-storey buildings: the first two-storey building has an area of 114 square meters and the second two-storey building has an area of 98 square meters. Annex ‚D‛. J. CV-67019 entitled ‚Salud Pagsuyuin vs. though incapable of pecuniary estimation. Aurea Aragon-Casiano for private respondent. as well as the commercial In this petition for review on certiorari. 67). of Schlander. which loan was obtained by the said Mrs. et al. Ejercito. City able one and to Mrs. petitioners seek to reverse and set aside the decision1 of the Intermediate Appellate Court (now Court of Appeals) dated June 6. Olongapo was 1974. the trial court and respondent Court of Appeals are in unison as to the findings of the former that a sufficient cause of action had been proved by overwhelming be awarded. Amended Record on Appeal. PARAS. during preponderance it is the essential trial the of evidence the of the private must respondent as against the petitioners Rafael Pagsuyuin. For moral damages to be awarded. Damages. R. Olongapo Townsite Subdivision) with an area of 339 square meters upon which these two (2) two-storey buildings are erected.000. PETITION for certiorari to review the decision of the then Intermediate Appellate Court.: Sometime resident Salud a of in August. This is so because moral damages. 193. No. Records show that private respondent Salud Pagsuyuin and petitioners Peregrina Pagsuyuin-Subido and Rafael Pagsuyuin are first cousins. 1991 549 Pagsuyuin vs. it is essential that the claimant must have satisfactorily proved during the trial the existence of the factual basis of the damages and its causal connection with adverse party’s acts. Carlos & Associates Law Offices for petitioners.R. 54. 2139-0 entitled ‚Salud Pagsuyuin v.Civil Law. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. TS-308. p. an Gregoria a B.‛ affirming with modification the decision2 of the then Court of First Instance (now RTC) of Zambales. Page 221 . Branch I in Civil Case No. For moral damages to that claimant of the have satisfactorily of the proved existence factual basis 1 Penned by Justice Bienvenido Ejercito. Rafael Pagsuyuin et al. 1985 in AC _______________ lot (Lot 3114. Rafael Pagsuyuin. Schlander upon a forged power of attorney allegedly signed by Salud Pagsuyuin (Rollo. Intermediate Appellate Court G. Mariano Zosa and Floreliana Castro-Bartolome. damages and its causal connection with adverse party’s acts.

1976 in the presence of witnesses Marietta Javier and Federico Javier (Rollo. 222 Page Petitioners Rafael Pagsuyuin and Peregrina Pagsuyuin-Subido. Ibid.362. offered to the latter to settle the bank loan so as to keep her peace of mind and to retain the ownership of her mortgaged properties (Rollo. p. Salud Pagsuyuin filed suit in the Court of First Instance of Olongapo City. As the loan indicated hereinabove was not paid at maturity. Veridiano II. Petition. 46). 7). These documents were: 1) Deed of Assignment (morning version) stating that Salud Pagsuyuin allegedly amount delivered transferred of to Salud her properties and that for the and amount in of consideration P30. Gregoria B. two (2) documents were allegedly executed involving the transfer of the properties of Salud Pagsuyuin to Peregrina PagsuyuinSubido and Rafael Pagsuyuin. Consequently. Rafael and Banking Corporation to inquire about Salud. Ibid. 17-19).. The two (2) documents (Deeds of Assignment) were notarized by Notary Public Edmundo Tubio allegedly on the 13th of September. Civil Case No.362. p. Gregoria B.On December 1975. pp. Schlander had already absconded and left for the United States (Rollo. To protect. 1976 (Rollo. 1976 (Rollo. 1918-0 against the Manila Banking _______________ Manila the amicable settlement of the loan. 47). Schlander in favor of said bank and she immediately went to verify the accuracy of the information which she found to be true. including the City Sheriff of Olongapo City. Mrs. namely Peregrina. 48). Branch III. Ibid. and it was at this juncture that the petitioners told Salud Pagsuyuin that they would help her in settling her mortgage loan if petitioner Peregrina Pagsuyuin-Subido will stay free of charge whatever in the leased will premises be and that by Salud Pagsuyuin to will Salud repay with amount advanced the petitioners interest (Rollo. Ibid. which allegedly afternoon of September 13.. Petition. 18). 16. pp.95. p.000. went to possibility of the an had been mortgaged by Mrs.00 of will the be P256.00.. 8). her interest on her property. Pagsuyuin upon signing the instrument.96 but there was no indication that there will be a down payment P30. Salud Pagsuyuin and her witnesses denied having executed 551 550 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Pagsuyuin vs.. Ibid. pp. 13-16). Schlander. Petition.. 2) Deed of Assignment (afternoon version) stating that Salud Pagsuyuin allegedly transferred of her properties for and was in consideration signed of in the the amount of P256. the Manila Banking Corporation at Olongapo City started to foreclose the mortgaged properties extrajudicially (Rollo. Intermediate Appellate Court Corporation. 550 allegedly signed in the morning of September 13. but then Mrs. p. brother and sister and first cousins of Salud Pagsuyuin. Salud Pagsuyuin was informed that her property The three cousins. to annul the said real estate mortgage with a prayer for preliminary injunction (Rollo. p.000. Schlander and her husband Mr. which was 2 Penned by Judge Regino T. .

Intermediate Appellate Court the above deeds of assignment on September 13. refunded by the plaintiff to the defendants with legal interest. Defendants’ counterclaim are hereby denied. Naval Base. while his wife Marietta Javier was at Olongapo City. namely. and e of the dispositive portion of the decision to read as follows: Page . premises considered.S. 1977.000. Marietta Pagsuyuin-Javier and Federico Javier in the Deeds of Assignment were obtained thru fraud and trickery perpetrated by the petitioners Rafael Pagsuyuin and Peregrina PagsuyuinSubido (Rollo. p. ruled: ‚WHEREFORE. that the signature of private respondent Salud Pagsuyuin and her witnesses. the trial court rendered its decision. A and B) as null and void.00 as moral damages and exemplary damages. pp. 54. 552 special defense that it was the private respondent Salud Pagsuyuin who proposed to the petitioners the transfer of all the properties covered by a Real Estate Mortgage (Rollo. p. on March 1. On March 21.000. pp. the decision appealed from is (Salud) and against the defendants (herein petitioners) as follows: a) Declaring the Deeds of Assignment (Exhs. d) Ordering defendants jointly and severally to pay plaintiff the amount of P20. 69-70). damages with preliminary injunction. Consequently. Annex ‚D‛. Intermediate Appellate Court 54. Amended Record on Appeal. 54. c) Ordering all other payments made by the defendants offsetting the plaintiff’s indebtedness such as made to Felix Makalintal. 1985. Batangas while her instrumental witnesses Federico Javier was working at the U. Amended Record on Appeal. On March 24. On Appeal. p.VOL. d. 1976 as she was on that date at Alitagtag.00 as attorney’s fees. the Intermediate Appellate Court in its decision dated June 6. and e) Ordering defendants jointly and severally to pay the amount of P20.96 to the Manila Bank. 1991 551 Pagsuyuin vs. 5-19). Annex ‚H‛. SO ORDERED. and Irene de Leon. 193.362. Theodore Ilagan. 1980. Annex ‚D‛. the plaintiff is hereby directed to refund the same amount to the defendants with legal interest. Amended Record on Appeal. FEBRUARY 6. judgment is hereby rendered in favor of the plaintiff 552 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Pagsuyuin vs. pp. alleging among others. petitioners filed an answer claiming by way of b) If there was payment of indebtedness in the amount of P226.‛ (Rollo. an amended complaint was filed by Salud Pagsuyuin before the Court of First Instance of Zambales for the annulment of documents. 223 affirmed but with the modification of paragraphs b. the dispositive portion of which reads: ‚WHEREFORE. 23-32). 1977.

Petitioners evidence document Rafael Pagsuyuin. pp. Intermediate Appellate Court (b) xxxx xxx (Sec. it was denied (Rollo. is not applicable when the validity of such agreement is the fact in dispute. her which signed same evening (when house) presence around witnesses a. fraud. 1985. Javier to On the other hand.96 with legal interest from dates of said payment and expenses paid by the defendants to the Manila Bank.000. FEBRUARY 6. A motion for reconsideration was filed on June 25. 193. private respondent’s evidence clearly shows that on September International returned Then on to 7. violence or undue influence (Art. between the said parties and their successors in interest. Cantiveros. contend that both lower courts As can be clearly gleaned from the foregoing..362. or the validity of the agreement is put in issue by the pleadings. 1330. however. 1976 in Marietta Pagsuyuin-Javier and Federico admissibility of parol evidence. The contention is untenable. .00 as moral and exemplary damages. SO ORDERED. In the case at bar.b. p. d. 1976 a document she in the at was brought that of 6:00 to her at the Manila she and Airport. Annex ‚B‛. 50-51).) Ordering defendants jointly and severally to pay plaintiff the amount of P5. P5. 40 Phil. In fact. Rule 130). pp.000. 209. Decision. petitioners of the Deeds of relied heavily on the fact of notarial Assignment by Notary Public the Edmundo deflect the presence of gravely erred in voiding the Deeds of Assignment based upon extrinsic of alleged reduced to vitiated consent of the writing is deemed to assignor-private have contained respondent all such Salud Pagsuyuin in defiance of the settled rule of parol evidence that a terms and conditions as contemplated by the parties and there can be.m. as early as 1919 in the case of Bough v. 1991 553 Pagsuyuin vs. no evidence of the terms of the agreement other than the contents of the writing itself. and e.) Ordering defendants jointly and severally to pay the amount of 553 VOL. With costs against the defendants’.00 as attorney’s fees. certification witnesses Tubio allegedly on the 13th of September. this Court laid down the rule that where the validity of the agreement is the issue. 72-76). New Civil Code).) Ordering plaintiff to pay defendants the amount of P226. 7. et al. intimidation. Federico 224 The rule on parol evidence recognizes the following exceptions: (a) where a mistake or imperfection of the writing. A contract may be annulled where the consent of one of the contracting parties was procured by mistake.‛ (Rollo. Annex ‚A‛. 52). the rule making a writing the exclusive evidence of the agreement therein stated. September 8. this petition. The main issue in the instant case is whether or not parol evidence is admissible to annul the deed of assignment on the ground of fraud. Relying on the assurances of petitioner Rafael that the same were additional copies of the documents they had signed Page express the true intent and agreement of the parties. 1976 Rafael Pagsuyuin went to the house of the private respondent Salud Pagsuyuin with more documents for signature. or its failure to Marietta Javier but they were not given copies thereof (Rollo. Hence. parol evidence may be introduced to establish illegality or fraud.

This evidence overcomes the known presumption fraus est odiosa et non praesumenda (Yturralde v. Intermediate Appellate Court Page . the findings of the trial court which were affirmed by the appellate court are quoted with approval: ‚x x x the instruments of sale (Exh. defendants vitiated consent in the preparation instrumental witnesses which have not been satisfactorily rebutted by the petitioners Rafael Pagsuyuin. he broke completely down in court and could not continue his declaration against his cousin the herein plaintiff.‛ VOL. Rollo. Vagilidad. 40-51).). FEBRUARY 6. 74-75) and he only showed them the latter portion and refused to show the contents of the documents (TSN. contrary to the intent of private respondent.in the evening of September 7. et al. Hearing of January 31.‛ (C. pp. pp. 1978. . Rollo. pp. 28 SCRA 393 [1969]). Rollo. but said witness developed cold feet and discontinued declaring against the plaintiff. Salud and her witnesses signed without reading as petitioner Rafael was in a hurry (TSN. the pp. Hearing of May 9. no instrument is so sacred when tainted with fraud as to place it beyond the scrutiny of extrinsic evidence. 1991 555 Pagsuyuin vs. . Intermediate Appellate Court ers. The authenticity and genuineness of the documents were attacked because . While the writing itself may have been accompanied by the most solemn formalities. 9-13. As it turned out. These testimonies were never satisfactorily rebutted by the petition554 554 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Pagsuyuin vs. The failure of defendant Rafael Pagsuyuin to give testimony was a fatal defect that torpedoed the efforts of the defendants and witnesses to prove the defense that there was a valid transfer of the properties. house 75-76). 1978. Decision. Hearing of October 13. the documents were denominated as Deeds of Assignment. of After he had obtained leaving their any signatures. Ibid. Rollo. have 555 225 and execution of said documents as plaintiff was misled into believing the same is a deed of mortgage instead of a deed of assignment. . the court had very well observed that he could not explain the dubious circumstances that characterized the transfer of the property between him and the plaintiff. 193. ‚A‛ and ‚B‛) lacked the valid consent of the transferor Salud Pagsuyuin as there was fraud enlisted in making plaintiff sign the documents without understanding the contents thereof. most probably because of deep-rooted fear of being discovered falsifying the truth and experiencing the fangs of guilty conscience. Judging from his demeanor and attitude.A. At this juncture. so that his counsel withdrew him as a witness and his entire testimony was disregarded by this court. 1977. The evidence had proven that plaintiff was tricked and deceived into signing two (2) deeds of assignment which was not her intention to do so (sic). 73-74). Rafael left Salud again without The trial court continued: ‚The person who could have enlightened this court as to the disputed facts is none other than Rafael Pagsuyuin himself. . 1976 (TSN. Hearing of January 31. The testimonies of private respondent Salud Pagsuyuin and her two copy of the document (TSN. 1978. pp.

As shown in the records of the case. He has the opportunity to size up the appearance. Page 226 .. Padilla. For moral damages to be awarded. Melencio-Herrera (Chairman). Indeed. al. PREMISES CONSIDERED. was in fact given and accepted as a mortgage does not violate the rule against admission of oral evidence to vary or contradict the terms of a written instrument. the trial court has a first hand advantage to assess the value to be given the testimony of a witness (Yturralde v. also assign as error the grant of moral and exemplary damages plus attorney’s fees in favor of private respondent Salud Pagsuyuin. of witnesses SCRA the 125 findings of the trial court are given great weight and the highest degree respect appellate court (People 139 [1985]). concur. Montejo galado. Petitioners Rafael Pagsuyuin. This is so because moral damages. SO ORDERED. et. JJ. et al. it is essential that the claimant must have satisfactorily proved during the trial the existence of the factual basis of the damages and its causal connection with adverse party’s acts. IAC. supra). though incapable of pecuniary estimation.) [Pagsuyuin vs.. (Ramos vs. 193 SCRA 547(1991)] petitioners Rafael Pagsuyuin. convincing and more than merely preponderant. 180 SCRA 635. 1985 is AFFIRMED. the trial court and respondent Court of Appeals are in unison as to the findings of the former that a sufficient cause of of action of had the been private proved respondent by as overwhelming against the preponderance evidence The wrongful act attributable to the petitioners—the employment of fraudd— is the proximate cause of the mental anguish suffered by private respondent Salud Pagsuyuin. the probability or improbability of the testimony. 157 SCRA 253 [1988]). of the witnesses.made out a case of fraud by evidence clear. 143 SCRA 77 [1987]). de Roxas v. Decision affirmed. Note.—Admission of parol testimony to prove that a deed. Sarmiento and Re556 556 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Sucaldito vs. absolute in form. the demeanor. it is axiomatic that the factual findings of the trial Court and Court of Appeals are entitled to great respect (Vda. Intermediate Appellate Court. the decision of the Intermediate Appellate Court dated June 6. that ‚it is a fundamental rule in criminal as well as of in civil cases by the that in the matter of credibility v. Moreover. the manner of testifying. Court of Appeals. Court of Appeals. unquestionably because the trial judge is in a superior position to gauge the credibility of those who take the witness seat before him. Vagilidad. Sarol. are in the category of an award designed to compensate the claimant for actual injury suffered and not to impose a penalty on the wrongdoer (Makabili v.

Labor Law. Damages. must be grave and not merely trivial. It is willful in character and implies a wrongful intent. She is thus entitled to reinstatement without loss of seniority rights and other privileges and to full backwages. Moral damages are recoverable where the dismissal of the employee was attended with bad faith or was done in G. ROLF PFISTERER AND BENILDA QUEVEDOSANTOS.Misconduct. even though intermittent. 554. is deemed regular with respect to the activity performed and while such activity actually exists. any employee who has rendered at least one year of service. not a mere error in judgment. 167310. ELAINE M. 551 regular activities performed usually necessary or desirable in the usual business of the employer. ALIPIO. petitioners.—An * SECOND DIVISION. It is willful in character and implies a wrongful intent. Alipio was illegally dismissed because petitioners failed on both counts to comply with the twin requisites for a valid termination. vs. Same. respondent. or was their be monetary up no to to equivalent the month time feasible. Labor Law.—Alipio was illegally dismissed because petitioners failed on both counts to comply with the twin requisites for a valid termination. Alipio Page . 227 However. Regular Employees.—We defined forbidden act or dereliction of duty. The misconduct. and to other Should benefits. VOL. every reinstatement longer one equivalent service in lieu of reinstatement. No. Illegal Dismissal. June 17.* a manner contrary to good customs—exemplary damages _______________ THE PENINSULA MANILA. error judgment. pay computed of for actual Alipio her is from the entitled year time to of compensation separation pay withheld reinstatement.R. JUNE 17. 2008. Same. to be serious. not a mere We have in defined misconduct have as any forbidden misconduct act as or any dereliction of duty. inclusive of allowances. An employment is deemed regular when the activities in performed the usual when by the the employee of the are usually by the necessary employment employee or is are desirable deemed business employer. 2008 551 The Peninsula Manila vs.

pp.4 dismissing the complaint for illegal dis_______________ hotel at the time of the controversy. at pp. which reversed the Decision3 dated December 29. De Leon. 34-52. Magnaye & Azucena (IDLAMA) Law Offices for petitioners. The hotel also engages the services of reliever nurses who substitute for the regular nurses who are either off-duty or absent. Damages. with Associate concurring... 2000). Co-petitioners Rolf Pfisterer and Benilda Quevedo-Santos were the general manager and human resources manager. Penned by Associate Justice Marina L. PETITION for review on certiorari of the decision and resolution of the Court of Appeals. Respondent Elaine M. Leogardo. Exemplary damages may also be awarded if the dismissal is effected in a wanton. The NLRC had earlier affirmed with modification the Labor Arbiter’s Decision. at pp. The award of attorney’s fees equivalent to ten percent (10%) of the and total thus monetary ought to award be is consistent with of prevailing jurisprudence affirmed. 552 attorney’s fees equivalent to ten percent (10%) of the total monetary award is consistent with prevailing jurisprudence and thus ought to be affirmed.. The hotel operates a clinic 24 hours a day and employs three regular nurses who work eight hours each day on three separate shifts. 67007. 2005 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. The Peninsula Manila. 2 Id. 53-57. SP No. of the For review on certiorari are the Decision1 dated August 23. 62-72 (Dated March 15.: 552 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Peninsula Manila vs. Attorney’s Fees. she had been performing the usual tasks and functions of a . Alipio missal against herein petitioners. Guariña III and Santiago Javier Ranada oppressive or malevolent manner. Alipio was hired merely as a reliever nurse. 4 Id. Ang for respondent Sentro ng Alternatibong Lingap Panligal (SALIGAN). is a corporation engaged in the hotel business.may also be awarded if the dismissal is effected in a wanton. Justices Mario L.—Moral damages are recoverable where the dismissal of the employee was attended with bad faith or was done in a manner contrary to good customs. 023890-00. Page 228 However. The pertinent facts are as follows: Petitioner. Atienza. QUISUMBING.R. Buzon. Inocentes. respectively.000. oppressive or malevolent manner. 1 Rollo. 2000 of the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) in NLRC NCR CA No. but awarding respondent herein separation pay amounting to P20. 2004 and Resolution2 dated March 11. at pp.—The award 3 Id. Levy Edwin C. 74-82. J.

In response. the Court of Appeals reversed the decision of the NLRC after ascertaining that the findings of the Labor Arbiter and the NLRC that Alipio is not an employee of Peninsula and that she was validly dismissed is not supported by the evidence on record. 554. at p. On December 18. 6 Id.‛6 Upon further review.00. Santos was peeved with Alipio’s response because the latter was allegedly not entitled to get copies of her payslip vouchers. she inquired why she was not receiving her 13th month pay. Alipio Aggrieved. 2008 553 The Peninsula Manila vs. After due proceedings. ‚WHEREFORE. 7 Id... The Labor Arbiter held. When Alipio met with Santos on December 21. Alipio was asked regarding her payslip vouchers.regular nurse since the start of her employment on December 11. Alipio was paid P8. at p. to wit: ‚WHEREFORE. She told Santos that she made copies of her payslip vouchers because Peninsula does not give her copies of the same.‛5 On appeal. However.00 based on an average monthly pay of P8.7 The dispositive portion of the Decision dated August 23. 40. petitioners required her to submit a summary of her tour of duty for 1997. but directed that Peninsula pay Alipio separation pay amounting to P20. the appeal of the complainant is dismissed for lack of merit. petitioners.. considering . 81. in the total amount of P20. but her request was denied. 1993. at p. 72. in view of the foregoing. the decision appealed from is affirmed with the modification that the award of separation pay is hereby deleted. judgment is hereby rendered DISMISSING the instant complaint for lack of merit. after about four years of employment in the hotel. Santos likewise directed Alipio not to report for work anymore. 2004 of the Court of Appeals reads: VOL. 1998. SO ORDERED. Alipio likewise requested for the payment of her 13th month pay for 1993 to 1996.000. the respondent hotel is ordered to give her separation pay equivalent to one-half month pay for every year of complainant’s reliever service. SO ORDERED. Alipio was informed by a fellow nurse that she can only report for work after meeting up with petitioner Santos. After she had submitted the said summary.000 as her 13th month pay for 1997. the NLRC affirmed with modification the Labor Arbiter’s decision. 553 that complainant had served as reliever for respondent hotel for a long period. 554 229 Page of merit.000. Hence. Accordingly. 1998. JUNE 17. the Labor Arbiter dismissed the complaint for lack Alipio filed a complaint for illegal dismissal against the _______________ 5 Id.000.

and (2) there is no vacancy for the said Labor Relations Commission for the computation of the monetary claims of petitioner. Private respondents The Peninsula Manila and Benilda Quevedo-Santos are ordered to reinstate petitioner Elaine M.]00. 2008 555 The Peninsula Manila vs. 139-140. Alipio. and (2) petitioners’ failure to 230 SUPPOSED FINDINGS ERRORS WHICH COMMITTED NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION AND IN REVERSING THE LATTER’S OF FACT WERE SUPPORTED SUBSTANTIAL EVIDENCE IN THE RECORD. is not beyond the scope of judicial review because palpable mistake was committed in disregarding evidence showing (1) her status as a regular employee of Peninsula. the instant petition for review on certiorari contending that the Court of Appeals seriously erred: I.‛8 (Emphasis supplied. at p. AND Page . Petitioners likewise argue that Alipio cannot be reinstated as a regular staff nurse because (1) she never served in that capacity. full backwages and all the benefits to which she is entitled under the Labor Code from December 12. counters that the NLRC decision. TOGETHER WITH PAYMENT OF MORAL AND EXEMPLARY DAMAGES AND ATTORNEY’S FEES. exemplary damages in the amount of P20. the petition is GRANTED and the Decision dated II. Alipio Petitioners contend that the Court of Appeals should have accorded the unanimous findings of the Labor Arbiter and the NLRC due respect and finality as the conclusion reached by the two bodies is supported by substantial evidence on record. jointly and severally.00. Let this case be remanded to the Labor Arbitration Branch. 50. to pay petitioner.) Petitioners moved for reconsideration but their motion was denied. 2000 and the Order dated June 29.554 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Peninsula Manila vs. and attorney’s fees equivalent to ten (10%) percent of the total monetary award.000. moral damages in the amount of P30. affirming that of the Labor Arbiter. for her part. JUNE 17. SO ORDERED.9 _______________ December 29. National 8 Id. Petitioners insist Alipio was terminated for a just cause and with due process. IN GIVING DUE COURSE WAS TO THE RESPONDENT’S BASED ON BY PETITION THE BY FOR OF CERTIORARI WHICH FACTUAL MAINLY ALLEGATIONS position or any equivalent position to which she may be reinstated.000[. 1994 up to the time of her actual reinstatement. Hence.. Alipio ‚WHEREFORE. 555 VOL. at pp. 9 Id. 554.. IN DECLARING THE RESPONDENT’S DISMISSAL TO BE ILLEGAL AND ORDERING HER REINSTATEMENT WITH FULL BACK WAGES. Alipio as regular staff nurse without loss of seniority rights. 2001 of the National Labor Relations Commission are REVERSED and SET ASIDE.

year be of That. However. She points out that a Certification dated April 22. 2008 dismissed. 1997 issued by the hotel proves she was a regular staff nurse until at her the illegal dismissal. even 556 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Peninsula Manila vs. an employment shall be deemed to be regular where the employee has been engaged to perform activities which are usually necessary or desirable in the usual business or trade of the employer.‛ (Emphasis supplied. agreement Regular to the and Casual Employment. that Alipio _______________ 10 Trendline Employees Association-Southern Philippines Federation of Labor v. National Labor Relations Commission. except where the employment has been fixed for a specific project or undertaking the completion or termination of which has been determined at the time of the engagement of the employee or where the work or services to be performed is seasonal in nature and the employment is for the duration of the season. After carefully weighing the parties’ arguments.—The and provisions of of written oral contrary notwithstanding regardless the agreement of the parties. any employee who has rendered at least one year of service. 272 SCRA 172. service. 557 231 was not a regular employee of the hotel and that she was validly VOL. however. an employment is deemed regular when the activities performed by the employee are usually necessary or desirable in the usual business of the employer. the Court may be compelled to deviate from this general rule if the Labor Arbiter and the NLRC misappreciated the facts. An employment shall be deemed to be casual if it is not covered by the preceding at or paragraph: least one broken. she contends that obtaining copies of her own payslips does not indicate a perverse attitude justifying dismissal for serious misconduct or willful disobedience. May 5. considered any a employee such regular who service has is with rendered continuous whether negate the fact that she also worked as a regular nurse of the hotel.observe substantive and procedural due process.) Thus. City She stresses Center that does her not supposed employment Quezon Medical ‚ART. Article 280 of the Labor Code provides: Page . 112923. JUNE 17. we resolve to deny the petition.10 The conclusions reached by the NLRC and the Labor Arbiter. She further claims that bad faith attended her dismissal. It is doctrinal that the factual findings of quasi-judicial agencies like the NLRC are generally accorded respect and finality if such are supported by substantial evidence. In some instances. She adds.R. 280. G. thereby resulting in the impairment 556 employee respect to the activity in which he is employed and his employment shall continue while such activity exists. 1997. Alipio of the worker’s constitutional and statutory right to security of tenure. 554. are not supported by law and evidence on record. No. Additionally. shall Provided. there is no showing that her refusal to return copies of her payslips caused material damage to petitioners. 179.

as her employer. Alipio though intermittent. National Labor Relations Commission. 12 ART. Being a regular employee. G.13 _______________ person of his employer or any immediate member of his family or his duly authorized representative. August 21. 176 SCRA 615. Alipio’s act of obtaining copies of her payslips cannot be characterized as a misconduct.11 In this case. The misconduct. No. . records show that Alipio’s services were engaged by the hotel intermittently from 1993 up to 1998. 621. (c) Fraud or willful breach by the employee of the trust reposed in him by his employer or duly authorized representative. to give her copies of her payslips as 232 Page employment for any of the following causes: (a) Serious misconduct or willful disobedience by the employee of the lawful orders of his employer or representative in connection with his work. 144939. 13 Voyeur Visage Studio.R. Inc. Her services as a reliever nurse were undoubtedly necessary and desirable in the hotel’s business of providing comfortable accommodation to its guests. 70705.14 In this case.R.—An employer may terminate an in judgment. 282. she was already a ‚regular staff nurse‛ until her dismissal. is deemed regular with respect to the activity (b) Gross and habitual neglect by the employee of his duties. not a mere error 11 De Leon v. 558 558 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Peninsula Manila vs. Alipio enjoys security of tenure. we find it absurd that she had to resort to her own resourcefulness to get hold of these documents since it was incumbent upon Peninsula. 1989. G. March 18. and (2) the employee must be given an opportunity to be heard and to defend himself. Her services may be terminated only upon compliance with the substantive and procedural requisites for a valid dismissal: (1) the dismissal must be for any of the causes provided in Article 28212 of the Labor Code. since she had rendered more than one year of intermittent service as a reliever nurse at the hotel. v. (d) Commission of a crime or offense by the employee against the performed and while such activity actually exists. she had become a regular employee as early as December 12. Termination by employer. much less a grave misconduct. 1997. and (e) Other causes analogous to the foregoing. 729. No. Court of Appeals. Lastly.557 The Peninsula Manila vs. 2005. per the hotel’s own Certification dated April 22. In any case. must be grave and not merely trivial. On the contrary. It is willful in character and implies a wrongful intent. Alipio Did Alipio commit serious misconduct when she obtained copies of her payslips? We have defined misconduct as any forbidden act or dereliction of duty. to be serious. 1994. 453 SCRA 721.

18 In this case. An employee who is unjustly dismissed from work shall be entitled to reinstatement without loss of seniority rights and other privileges and to his full backwages. 166379. 1997 and recognized Alipio as a regular employee. Security employer shall not of Tenure.000.R. v. 1998. 2008 559 . Clearly. G.17 Exemplary damages may also be awarded if the dismissal is effected in a wanton. oppressive or malevolent manner. 554. and to his other benefits or their monetary equivalent computed from the time his compensation was withheld from him up to the time of his actual reinstatement. moral damages are recoverable where the dismissal of the employee was attended with bad faith or was done in a manner contrary to good customs. or their monetary equivalent computed from the time compensation was withheld up to the time of actual reinstatement. while the petitioners issued a Certification dated April 22. Alipio Should reinstatement pay be no to longer one feasible.16 Furthermore.a matter of course. We are thus convinced that Alipio’s dismissal was not based on a just cause. Lastly. services employee except for a just cause or when authorized by this 559 Title. she is also entitled to moral damages in the amount of P15. 279. Thus. No. Was Alipio afforded an opportunity to be heard and to defend herself? When Santos had a meeting with Alipio on December 21. inclusive of allowances.000 and exemplary damages in the amount of P10.—In terminate the cases of regular of an employment. inclusive of allowances. 623.15 _______________ affording opportunity heard The Peninsula Manila vs. and to other benefits. JUNE 17. 2004 and Resolution _______________ herself. defend process. Under these circumstances. Neither was she informed of the ground for which her dismissal was sought. Alipio was illegally dismissed because petitioners failed on both counts to comply with the twin requisites for a valid termination. 473 SCRA 617. they deprived her of copies of her own payslips. She was simply thereby told right Alipio there no was and likewise then for that her she to of be was already and due dismissed. Inc. WHEREFORE. She is thus entitled to reinstatement without loss of seniority rights and other privileges and to full backwages. Belga. the petition is DENIED for lack of merit. 233 Page VOL. pay Alipio for her is entitled year to of separation equivalent month every service in lieu of reinstatement. the ART. she was not informed that the hotel was contemplating her dismissal. 2005. The assailed Decision dated August 23. Moreover. her dismissal was effected in a manner whereby she was deprived of due process. 15 Labor Code. deprived procedural 14 Lakpue Drug. as a rule. October 20. the award of attorney’s fees equivalent to ten percent (10%) of the total monetary award is consistent with prevailing jurisprudence19 and thus ought to be affirmed.

157634..16 P. No.R. Alipio. 560 560 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Peninsula Manila vs. 155279. loss of seniority rights and other privileges and to his full backwages. April 29.—Article 279 of the Labor Code. concur. 2005. May 16. Inc. 554 SCRA 550(2008)] Commission.000 and the exemplary damages to only P10. 482 2005. February 23. Adana. Antonio. Inc. 484 SCRA 33 [2006]) Instances (Poseidon when the employee vs. 559. Petition denied. SO ORDERED. 2005.000. (Big AA Manufacturer vs. 162472. Notes. assailed decision and resolution affirmed with modification. 158758. SP No. National Labor Relations Commission. 17 Mayon Hotel & Restaurant v. G. No. 19 Micro Sales Operation Network v. No. National Labor Relations Fishing. National Labor Relations Commission. 2005 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. 799. G. Inc.** Leonardo-De Castro*** and Brion.R.R. No. v. Alipio dated March 11. provides that a regular employee who is unjustly dismissed from work is entitled to reinstatement without Page 234 . inclusive of allowances and to his other benefits or their monetary equivalent computed from the time his compensation was withheld from him up to the time of his actual reinstatement. JJ.R.J. 104690. 1994. v. 18 Kay Products. 458 SCRA 609. National Labor Relations Commission. 268. such that the amount of moral damages is reduced to only P15. No. 2005. Court of Appeals.R. SCRA 717 [2006]) ——o0o—— [The Peninsula Manila vs. 457 SCRA 784. Tinga. 464 SCRA 544. Reyes. 331. October 11. No pronouncement as to costs. G. Lhuillier. 639.R. G. must be deemed a regular employee. 230 SCRA 260. 472 SCRA 328. citing Gaco v. 67007 are hereby AFFIRMED as MODIFIED. July 28. G.

235 (b) the reasonable necessity of the means employed to prevent or repel it. No. Criminal Law. CHRISTOPHER TABUELOG y CLAOR. 2008 301 People vs. 2008. Self-Defense.VOL.—In self-defense. must rely on strength own evidence and not on weakness Page . Elements. 542. vs. the and (c) lack of of his sufficient provocation on the part the of the person of the defending himself. whether complete or incomplete. JANUARY 22. namely: (a) unlawful aggression on the part of the victim.R. 178059. in cases of self-defense. Tabuelog G. the onus probandi is shifted to the accused to prove by clear and convincing evidence all the elements of justifying circumstance. January 22. appellee. In self-defense. invoking the onus probandi is shifted to the accused to prove by clear and convincing evidence all the circumstance. Justifying Circumstances. The accused. elements of whether justifying complete or incomplete. appellant. Murder.* PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES.

In the instant case. Words and Phrases. the defense must necessarily fail.000.00 as moral damages in line with prevailing jurisprudence. hence he may only be held liable for self-defense evidence after alibi. * THIRD DIVISION. Same.00 as civil indemnity and P50. disbelieved admitted defense P25. Same. 302 Same. Same. Quantum of Evidence. thus.000. and it is not clear and convincing. Evidence. Treachery must be proved with the same quantum of evidence as the crime itself. which and imperils one’s unexpected life or limb. it the be easily homicide. sudden attack VOL. Unlawful aggression. precluding any possible way for the victim to defend himself.prosecution’s evidence since he admits the commission of the alleged criminal act. Aggravating Circumstances. However. but an actual. Same. not murder.—We cannot agree . One who admits the infliction of injuries which caused the death of another has _______________ findings of the trial court that treachery attended the commission of the crime. which imperils merely a threatening or an intimidating attitude. Mere suddenness of the attack does not amount to treachery. Treachery. presupposes not merely a threatening or an intimidating attitude.000. Tabuelog established with certainty.‛ Nevertheless. The prosecution has the burden to prove that at the time of the attack.—It bears stressing that treachery cannot be presumed. Current jurisprudence allows the grant of if the like of the accused a prosecution were himself had which can 302 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. It is the first and primordial element of self-defense. Same. the justifying circumstance cannot be invoked.—Unlawful aggression presupposes not or an imminent danger thereof. but an actual. and that the offender consciously and deliberately adopted the particular means. there was no proof that appellant consciously adopted the mode of attack. the victim was not in a position to defend himself. burden not be of proving evidence. Same. Same. we cannot sustain the trial court’s award for with the 236 Page one’s life or limb. the is with sufficient and convincing weak. sudden and unexpected attack or an imminent danger thereof.—The trial court correctly awarded P50. It must be proved with the same quantum of evidence as the crime itself.00 as temperate damages when it appears that the heirs of the victim suffered pecuniary loss but the award thereof cannot be 303 concocted. The trial court appreciated the qualifying circumstance of treachery because ‚the attack by the accused upon the victim was sudden and coming from behind. Same. method and forms of attack employed by him. If the accused’s evidence is of doubtful veracity. JANUARY 22. Without it. 2008 303 People vs. Damages. mere suddenness of the attack does not amount to treachery. for even Self-defense. The fact that the victim might have been unaware or helpless when he was stabbed does not constitute proof of treachery. Same. 542. Tabuelog the could killing.

and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. The award of actual damages is proper only if the actual amount of loss was proven with a reasonable degree of certainty. The trial court awarded the same noting that it was ‚agreed upon during trial. Cruz and Jose C. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. Lanzanas and concurred in by Associate Justices Edgardo P. pp. Marqueza Badinas. in the City of Laoag. 2002. Tabuelog On October 14. loss but the however. Thus. 2002. allows the grant of P25. 10408-162 finding appellant Christopher Tabuelog guilty of murder and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua. penned by Associate Justice Enrico A. testified on the civil aspect of the case. penned by Judge Conrado A. she only presented a list of expenses without submitting the corresponding receipts. accused. treachery and and with intent to stabbed kill.00. It should be supported by receipts.actual damages in the amount of P113. the parties agreed on the following stipulation of facts.776. Philippines. 2 CA Rollo. 64-73. Reyes. with wilfully. the abovenamed there death.4 During pre-trial conference. The Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee. PETITION for review on certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals. actual or compensatory appears that damages the heirs cannot of the be victim awarded. did then and unlawfully feloniously from behind Clinton Badinas on the left side of his body that resulted to his instantaneous Assailed in the instant petition for review on certiorari is the Decision of the Court of Appeals dated November 30. Branch 16 in Crim. J. Page 237 _______________ . 2006 in CA-G. suffered Current pecuniary jurisprudence.‛ Appellant pleaded not guilty when arraigned on October 25. Public Attorney’s Office for accused-appellant. CONTRARY TO LAW. 2002.000. Ragucos. Case No.00 as temperate damages when it 1 Rollo. an Information3 was filed charging appellant with award thereof cannot be established with certainty.‛ This is not allowed. 304 304 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.R.: murder committed as follows: ‚That on or about the 12th day of October. 2-14. 01038 1 affirming the Decision of the Regional Trial Court of Laoag City. While the victim’s mother. to wit: ‚That the defense admits that whenever prosecution witnesses mentioned the name Christopher Tabuelog they would be referring to the accused who is charged and arraigned under the Information. Jr. pp. YNARES-SANTIAGO. CR No.

Roger Domingo came and shouted to Great Ceasar Martinez ‚You are fooling. The penetration could have damaged the heart and lungs of the victim. The victim came to pacify Roger Domingo by placing his arm over his shoulder and saying ‚pacencia ka ta nabartek. Immediately. the victim was brought to the Laoag City General Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Tom Tejada. Rodrigo Catcatan of the Laoag City General Hospital and the mother of the deceased who testified on the civil aspect. 2002. Jay-arr Martinez testified that: On October 12. at Calayab.‛ The victim eventually led Domingo away. Banie Mosilet and Great Ceasar Martinez.. Using the jeep. 9:30 He went in with the Great Ceasar Martinez. jeep Brgy. Clinton Badinas and Tom Tejada owner-type arriving place o’clock morning. the accused ran towards the mini-bus (presumably their vehicle for the field trip) eighty (80) meters away. Tabuelog wounds: Stab wound. 22. 3-4 centimeters. They were not able to catch the accused though because the victim pleaded to be rushed to the hospital. Laoag City. 5 Id. That his group was at the Calayab Beach at 4:00 o’clock in the afternoon. at p. and when near. he stabbed the left side of the body of the victim. Suddenly. Abra. while Great Ceasar Martinez. 37. the victim was conversing with a (former) teacher inside a cottage about two (2) meters away. Rodrigo Catcatan the victim sustained the following Colleges. 4 Id.‛5 Trial on the merits thereafter ensued. At that juncture. the students of Abra Valley College has a field trip in to an Fort Ilocandia. Page . According to Dr. 1. As the jeep was parked near one of the cottages in the area.. 305 238 VOL. drew a knife. Dr. left. That the accused admits that he stabbed Clinton Badinas on or about that time on said place and as a consequence of the wound he sustained Clinton Badinas died. chased by the victim. The prosecution and defense agreed into the following issues: Whether or not the stabbing of Clinton Badinas by the accused was attended by treachery and whether or not the accused acted in self defense in stabbing Clinton Badinas. That said accused joined a field trip in Calayab Beach. level 6-7 Intercostal Space (ICS). Banie Mosilet. the Laoag at City. Bangued. _______________ 3 Records. I am from Bangued (Abra)!‛ The latter was allegedly mad and drunk at that instance. at p. JANUARY 22.That on October 12. 2008 305 People vs. which caused his death and the assailant could have been southwest of the victim. Jay-Arr Martinez and Banie Mosilet were at the jeep. Using his left hand. p. 27. the accused came behind the victim and Domingo. 2002 accused was a student of Abra Valley The facts as found by the trial court are as follows: ‚The witnesses for the prosecution were Jay-arr Martinez. 542.

the victim was According to the accused. It was after the group finished drinking at about three to four o’clock in the afternoon that the accused heard Roger Domingo and Great Ceasar Martinez quarreling in front of the cottage. thus the rejecting appellant’s theory of self-defense. Tabuelog Jay-Arr Martinez likewise participated in the drinking session.‛6 The court trial court found a the version finding of the prosecution guilty of credible murder. Adrian Benabese and others. the Fort sliding accused back to avoid the attack. seeing the circumstances unfolding. supporting himself with his two hands. 2008 307 People vs. reason for which the latter moved backwards in an attempt to evade the stabbing act. for failure of the accused to prove self-defense. stopping to stab him. he fell down to the ground as result. In that position. complete or incomplete. at pp. The knife hit the area below the armpit of the victim. Calayab. they had a drinking session inside one of the cottages. After hearing a lecture on Police Photography. the accused was able to grasp the knife and swayed it upward with his right hand. to which the victim reacted by next facing the accused. together with Roger Domingo. the victim chased Domingo around the jeep. The victim pushed him on his breast while holding the broken bottle and accused was leaning backward. Great Ceasar Martinez and 306 continuously assaulting him with the broken bottle he was holding. Brgy. the victim still tried to stab him by going ‚on top of him‛ when accused was sitting on his buttocks and wiggled away with his two hands. Unfortunately. Tabuelog 239 Page two (1-2) meters away from each other. 2005. On May 6. they were on a field trip together with the Criminology students Abra College Ilocandia Beach Resort (Calayab Beach). The accused. he heard Great Ceasar shouted ‚Uncle Clinton. and the fact that the _______________ 6 Id. The consequently threw a water pitcher hitting the breast of the victim. About five together with Great Ceasar Martinez and Jay-Arr Martinez used in joining the field trip. the victim tried to stab the chest of the accused. and in the process picked up a bottle and broke it (by using) a post. The victim. At a distance of one to took this opportunity to run at the parked mini bus. Next. Afterwards. Laoag City. to which the latter responded by wiggling and . However. The victim allegedly continued going near the accused.. premises considered. the trial rendered Decision appellant dispositive portion of which reads: ‚WHEREFORE. JANUARY 22. and likewise continued to wiggle backwards and attempted to hold a knife used in chopping ice. on the other of hand. 122-125. While doing so. come here!‛ Clinton Badinas then appeared in front of the cottage coming from the back. 307 VOL. the presented Valley a different at scenario. shouted for Roger to stop. 542. The accused then 306 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.The other defense.

Self-defense. One who admits for the even infliction if the of injuries which of the caused the death of another has the burden of proving self-defense with convincing the evidence. and it is not clear and convincing. Appellant alleges that the justifying circumstance of selfdefense was not properly considered in his favor. the defense must necessarily fail. the accused CHRISTOPHER TABUELOG is hereby found GUILTY of the crime of Murder under Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code and the penalty of Reclusion Perpetua will all its accessory penalties is imposed upon him.9 We agree with the findings of the trial court as affirmed by the Court of Appeals that the defense miserably failed to establish the elements of self-defense namely: a) unlawful aggression on the part of the victim. like alibi. 8 People v.000. and (c) lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person defending himself. He is also Ordered to pay the heirs of CLINTON BADINAS Fifty _______________ 7 Id. evidence prosecution were weak.. Tabuelog alleged sufficient criminal and act. (b) the reasonable necessity of the means employed to prevent or repel it. 169060. 514 SCRA 660. this petition. whether complete or incomplete.prosecution was able to prove the qualifying aggravating circumstance of treachery beyond reasonable doubt in the killing of CLINTON BADINAS. namely: (a) unlawful aggression on the part of the victim. Fifty Thousand Pesos (P50. must rely on the strength of his own evidence and not on the weakness of the prosecution’s evidence since he admits the commission of the 240 Page intimidating attitude. 2007. Hence. that assuming the killing was committed not in self-defense. If the accused’s evidence is of doubtful veracity.‛7 On appeal. in cases of self-defense. still the courts below erred in appreciating the qualifying circumstance of treachery. Unlawful aggression presupposes not merely a threatening or an probandi is shifted to the accused to prove by clear and convincing evidence all the elements of justifying circumstance. but an actual. which imperils one’s life or limb. G. the onus 308 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. b) the reasonable necessity of the means employed to prevent or repel it. The petition is partly meritorious. In invoking self-defense. and One Hundred Thirteen Thousand Seven Hundred Seventy Six Pesos (P113.8 The accused. SO ORDERED.R. it could not be disbelieved after the accused himself had admitted killing. Concepcion. at pp. sudden and unexpected attack or an imminent danger thereof. and the Costs. February 6. It is the first .00) as actual damages being the amount agreed upon during the trial.00) as civil indemnity. No. and c) lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person defending himself.00) as moral damages.000. 308 Thousand Pesos (P50. 129-130.776. the Court of Appeals affirmed in toto the Decision of the trial court. is a defense which can easily be concocted.

I am from Bangued. testified that the stabbing incident was precipitated by an argument between Great Ceasar Martinez and Roger Domingo. q And to whom did Roger Domingo addressed? VOL. ‚the presence of a pitcher of water which the accused picked up to repel the attack of the deceased and the knife which the accused was able to grasp and swung it to the _______________ owner jeep. Page .and primordial element of selfdefense. Tabuelog (victim) hitting him near the left armpit seems to suggest that pitchers a Great Ceasar Martinez. then it is preposterous for the appellant to shout at and order Domingo. to wit: Testimony of Jay-arr Martinez: q After Roger Domingo went near the passenger seat in front of the disadvantageous the relentless remained surprising unscathed.‛11 Moreover. 10 Id. Without it. appellant failed to establish unlawful aggression on the part of the As victim. what happened again? 9 Id. as well as the appellant. madam. Prosecution witness Jay-arr Martinez. alleged assault from court. witness strengthen theory. The testimony did of not Roger help Domingo or who was the presented defense’s as a defense In fact. moreover. Domingo’s testimony was full of inconsistencies and improbabilities that it deserves no credence at all. q At the time what did you observe with this Roger Domingo? a He was mad. As noted by the trial court.10 In the instant case. correctly victim.12 Testimony of appellant Christopher Tabuelog: 241 and knives are scattered around Fort Ilocandia. 2008 309 People vs. 309 a I heard him uttered. instead of the victim. considering and appellant inconceivable that he was not harmed by his alleged pursuer. the justifying Further. you are fooling. if Domingo stopped as narrated by appellant. then it is circumstance cannot be invoked. thus putting Domingo’s life at risk. The presence of a pitcher and a knife conveniently within the reach of appellant was highly suspect and coincidental. observed position it is of his by the narration the trial appellant that of the events the was the unbelievable. 542. if it were true that the victim was pursuing Roger Domingo with a broken bottle. to stop. JANUARY 22.

sir. _______________ People vs. sir. sir. sir. Tabuelog q Where were they quarelling in relation to you inside the cottage? a Infront of the cottage where I stayed. come here!‛ 11 Records. 2003. Mr. q And what did you hear while they were quarelling? a Roger Domingo prohibits Great Cesar Martinez to make the niece of Roger Domingo as his girlfriend. 5. January 31. p. q While they were quarelling. who are they. sir. q And do you recognized who are those persons quarelling? a Yes. what happened? a I heard Great Cesar Martinez shouted. what happened? a I heard somebody quarelling. 126. sir. 310 242 310 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED q How far were you when you heard the shout of Great Cesar Martinez? a Page . q And. 12 TSN. p. q What did you hear as he shouted? a ‚Uncle Clinton. Witness? a Roger Romindo (Domingo) and Great Cesar Martinez.q While you were there inside the cottage.

Tabuelog a I don’t know. you never saw Great Cesar Martinez? a I don’t know that person. when Roger Domingo was placed on the witness stand. sir. sir. q And who was that person who appeared responding that call? a Clinton Badinas.Five (5) meters away. sir. Clinton Badinas. and Great Ceasar thus: q You remember encountering the group of the deceased in this case Martinez. come here!‛. January 11. sir. 2005. 2008 311 People vs. sir q But do you remember talking to a man whose name you do not know? a None. q And after Great Ceasar Martinez shouted. Martines talk to each other on October 12. Clinton Badinas? a No. JANUARY 22. he denied meeting or talking with the victim. q 243 Page When the witness of the prosecution JR Martinez came to court he told the Honorable Court and we are referring now to the sworn statement of the witness that Roger Domingo referring to you and Great Cesar . Witness. what can you say as to that? _______________ 13 TSN. 9-10. He also disavowed witnessing the stabbing incident. do you recall whether there was a person appeared? a Yes. pp. 311 VOL. 542. sir. q Do you mean to say Mr. sir. ‚Uncle Clinton.13 However. 2002 at about 4:00 in the afternoon.

in do the you Bangued. I’m still referring to the testimony of JR Martinez vernacular described ‚ginabbay remember that instance? a None. sir. Atty. Witness. in the were police named blotter herein which as mark a as exhibit for in the a 312 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. that the police blotter is not our evidence. q prosecution you having participation 244 Page heated altercation with the victim Clinton Badinas we are referring to the exact copy of the police blotter? Fiscal Frez . sir. Tabuelog a None. Barba October 12.q You did not talk to anybody aside from Christopher Tabuelog on May we pray. Barba Martinez vernacular Lines 12. sir. your honor. q And during that conversation. Atty. q When JR Martinez with Great came Cesar to court he and also you said said that in you the has an It’s a form part of the record. 2002 at 4:00 o’clock in the afternoon? a None. sir. Abra? 312 argument ‚luklukuen nak sa met taga Bangued dak‛? a I did not say that remark. your honor. Barba q During which the victim has heated altercation meaning Clinton Badinas heated altercation to a fellow criminology student Roger Domingo of Clinton he Badinas it came near na you ni Roger Roger Domingo Domingo. Atty. q Mr. 13 and 14.

sir. q Do you remember saying to me that you do not want to come to court to testify in this case? a Yes. to wit: q Do you remember telling me that you were drank at that time you saw Clinton Badinas the victim in this case armed with a broken bottle? a Yes. 2002? a I did not see any crime. Roger Domingo completely reversed himself by stating. q Can you tell us why initially you did not want to come to court to testify in this case? a Because I don’t witness what happened. sir. q And do you remember what was my advised to you regarding your honoring the subpoena? a Yes.Why are you here in court today Mr. sir. Witness? a Yes. Mr. sir. q Do you remember coming to the Public Attorney’s Office on July 7. _______________ Page 245 . after disavowing any knowledge about the stabbing incident. can you tell us? a Because of the subpoena sent to me.14 However. q Do you remember that you told at the Public Attorney’s Office? a Tell the truth. sir. sir. q Do you remember me asking you what you witnessed during the field trip on October 12. sir. Witness. q And do you remember talking to me. sir. that was a Monday 2003? a Yes. sir.

q Your Honor. sir. Atty. is.I don’t know. pp. he just holding the broken bottle. 2008 313 People vs. sir. 2002 at 4:00 o’clock in the afternoon? a Yes. 2003. July 16. 313 q Was he approaching anybody with the broken bottle? Fiscal Frez VOL. sir. Fiscal Frez Sustain. the witness said he saw the victim Clinton Badinas holding a broken bottle but he do not know the purpose of that possession. Tabuelog q So you did see the victim Clinton Badinas on October 12. 2002? a I saw him but I don’t see how he was killed. your honor. 7-10. q My question. JANUARY 22. did you see Clinton Badinas armed with a broken bottle on October 12. Barba Leading. Atty. Court 246 Page What was Clinton Badinas doing with a broken bottle? a . 14 TSN. 542. Barba Your Honor. we have it declared this witness as reluctant witness and that we be allowed to ask leading questions because initially he was very consistent in saying he did not know anything even saying he did not even see Clinton Badinas the victim in this case but for now he changed his mind and he is now saying he did see him armed with broken bottle.

q Did he execute any affidavit? Atty. Court a Clinton Badinas chased me. I thought I was running. your honor. May we then proceed. Atty. Barba Leading your honor. counsel. Atty. now. q Do you remember telling me at the Public Attorney’s Office that you were in a stopper and you were glued to the 314 Page 247 . sir. sir. Tabuelog a That is my plan. Witness? Fiscal Frez The court is not yet satisfied. Barba q What do you mean. sir. your honor. q Why did you plan to run. Mr. Barba Why do you say you thought you were running you mean to say you did not move at all.That’s why I want to ask leading questions. sir. Mr. Witness? place where you were standing while you viewed Clinton Badinas armed with broken bottle? a Clinton Badinas wanted to hit me with a broken bottle. q So you have the urge to run? 314 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. I thought I was running? a I thought I was running but my classmates told me I was standing.

JANUARY 22. q May we put on record the word ‚pinagtrippandak. Tabuelog q What about JR Martinez did you have altercation? a None. Barba What about the other member of the Cesar Martinez? Fiscal Frez group by the name of Great May we have the word ‚kursonada‛ remain on the record. Atty. 542. q There is another person in that group of Great Cesar Martinez by the name of Boni Mosilet. Barba q Did you have other altercation with Clinton Badinas prior to the armed of broken bottle? a 248 Page None.‛ can you tell us? a I was just the subject of their trip. sir.Atty.‛ your honor. Court Put that on record. do you have any misunderstanding with him? a None. q . Atty. ‚pinagtripandak. q What do you mean by the word ‚kursonada. 2008 315 People vs. your honor. your honor. Barba 315 VOL.‛ Fiscal Frez Already answered. sir. sir.

q Reform. 2002? We will reform. Barba They were 4 and I’m 2 meters away from them so I turned around and I wanted to run. he did not say that he wanted to run he thought he was running but he is standing according to the witness. q Did you sustain any injury on October 12. q Were the other 3 armed with other weapon? a I don’t know. Atty. your honor.So. sir. sir. Barba q You said you thought you were running but you stayed glued in your post was Clinton Badinas able to reach you? a No. what happened why he was not able to reach you? a . Atty. when you said that you tried to run did you see if Clinton Badinas was able to approach you? Fiscal Frez I don’t know. sir. q But you were still looking at him. sir. q What bottle? a about the other 3 companions of Christopher Badinas do you remember how they acted when Clinton Badinas was armed with broken The 3 at the same time approach me. is it not? a Objection. your honor. 316 249 Page Can you tell us why he was not able to reach you. sir. Court a No. sir.

542. JANUARY 22. precluding any possible way for the victim to defend himself. 317 VOL. 16 Pelonia v. April 13. treachery. 2007. between Appellant’s Domingo testimony and that Great the Ceasar victim Martinez was prior to the pursuing Domingo However.R. the testimony of defense witness Roger Domingo was full of inconsistencies and improbabilities that it deserves scant consideration.sir. p.. In fine. No. at pp. 10-15. there is no need to discuss whether the means employed to repel the attack was reasonable or whether appellant sufficiently provoked the victim into attacking him. 521 SCRA 207. appreciated the qualifying circumstance of treachery because ‚the attack by the accused upon the victim was sudden and coming from behind. to what direction did he lead Roger Domingo? a likewise contradicted Domingo’s version that he was rooted to the ground and was not moving while the victim was pursuing him. sir. Tabuelog The only prosecution evidence on the matter was the testimony of Jayarr Martinez that while the victim and Roger Domingo were walking.‛17 Nevertheless. Tabuelog q You said that you see how Clinton Badinas was stabbed to death but you are sure it is Christopher Tabuelog. 2008 317 People vs. the trial court correctly held that the defense failed to prove the element of unlawful aggression on the part of the victim. G. thus. the appellant stabbed the victim from behind. 72.316 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. 17 CA Rollo. thus: q You said that Clinton Badinas led Roger Domingo away from the jeep. _______________ mere suddenness of the attack does not amount to 15 Id. There being no unlawful aggression. 168997. People. treachery we cannot agree the with the findings of the of the trial The court trial that court attended commission crime.15 Clearly. It was inconsistent with the narration of the appellant that there was an altercation stabbing.16 Page 250 . I just heard it. is that correct? a I did not say that. q So when did you first heard that Clinton Badinas was already dead? a The following morning when they told me that he died.

where were Clinton Badinas and Roger Domingo facing? a They were facing north. madam. madam. q How far away south in relation to the jeep? a Around three to four meters. q When they reached the distance that you were pointing. q Why did you go there? a I observed what will happen. q You said that Roger Domingo and Clinton Badinas were facing north. madam. who was in the east of the two? a Clinton. what did you do? a I went to join them. q As you were observing the two. madam. madam. please point a distance to show a distance why you estimate three to four meters away? a From my seat to the electric fan. q From the place where you were sitting. madam. q About you. Christopher Tabuelog came. what happened next if any? a (witness estimating a distance of about three to four meters). madam. madam. q Where did Christopher Tabuelog go? a Behind Clinton and Roger.They went southward. madam. Page 251 . madam. q How far away from you from Clinton Badinas and Roger Domingo? a Also three to four meters.

madam. Tabuelog q How far away was Clinton to Roger Domingo? a They were near each other. madam. q You said that Christopher Tabuelog went behind them. madam. madam. q 318 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. q When Christopher Tabuelog stabbed Clinton Badinas with the knife. q 252 Page q Will you tell the Court what that something is? a . madam. q After you saw Christopher Tabuelog drew a knife. madam. what did he do with it? a He stabbed it. Christopher Tabuelog do after he was near the two? a He drew something. madam.318 A knife. q Did you see what Christopher Tabuelog drew? a Yes. where was Clinton Badinas facing at the time? a He was facing north. madam. what did Will you describe to this Court his knife? a It was a pointed instrument. q Whom did he stab? a Clinton Badinas.

is it two seconds? three seconds? a Two seconds. was 319 People vs. q Sustained. 253 Page 319 VOL. Court: a His left hand. 542. q immediately transpired before that? a None. madam. madam. what What part of the body of Clinton Badinas was stabbed that you saw? a Left side of his body. q How long after Christopher Tabuelog went near the two Roger Domingo and Clinton Badinas that Christopher Tabuelog drew a knife and stabbed Clinton Badinas? a Short time. JANUARY 22. madam. Leading. Fiscal: q Before the stabbing was made by Christopher Tabuelog.Immediately there any Tabuelog? Atty. Grande: before heated Christopher words Tabuelog stabbed Clinton Badinas. Tabuelog q What hand did Christopher Tabuelog used in stabbing Clinton Badinas? between Clinton Badinas and Christopher We object. q How short it is. q Who was defending? a Clinton Badinas defending Roger Domingo. 2008 . madam. he was defending him.

madam. He went backward. Grande: Already answered. madam. I was hit. madam. where did Christopher Fiscal: q He went backward. if any? a He went backward. madam. if any? 320 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. I was hit. Tabuelog q 254 Page Atty. q To what direction did he run to? a Northeast. madam. madam. what did Christopher Tabuelog do? a He ran away. how far Clinton Badinas go? a Around two meters. q What did you do then? a I pointed to the one who stabbed him. q Will you tell what the shout was? a He shouted. Christopher Tabuelog. Did you see him went? . madam. q When Clinton Badinas shouted. q After he went backward two meters away from Clinton Badinas. 320 Tabuelog go. q And what was the action. what happened next if any? a Clinton Badinas shouted.After Clinton Badinas was stabbed.

2003. the petition is PARTIALLY jurisprudence. not murder. the award allows thereof the grant of be P25. Applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law.a Yes. The the penalty maximum for homicide is reclusion is temporal. madam. The Decision of the Court of Appeals dated November 30. pp. JANUARY 22.00. the range of which is from 14 years. actual compensatory damages cannot be awarded. method and forms of attack instant case. the penalty of imprisonment that should be imposed up on to appellant 17 years should and be 4 10 years of of prision mayor. There in being its neither medium expenses without submitting the corresponding receipts. appellant consciously adopted the mode of attack. 2008 321 People vs. is proper only or if the actual amount of loss was proven with a reasonable degree of certainty.18 It bears stressing that treachery cannot be presumed. loss but however. The trial court as correctly moral awarded in P50. 8 months and 1 day to 17 years and 4 months.776. In the and offender there was consciously no proof and that However. premises considered.20 The trial court awarded the same noting that it was ‚agreed upon during trial.000. 2006 in CA-G.R. paragraph 1 of the Revised Penal Code. Marqueza Badinas. Current pecuniary certainty. hence he may only be held liable for homicide. supra note 8. The fact that the victim might have been unaware or helpless when he was stabbed does not constitute proof of treachery. Concepcion. January 31.00 damages prevailing jurisprudence. 321 VOL. the minimum imposable penalty is prision mayor the range of which is from 6 years and 1 day to 12 years. CR No. q Where did he go? a At the mini bus.‛21 This is It not allowed. The prosecution has the burden to prove that to by at the time of the attack. Tabuelog testified on the civil aspect of the case. _______________ 18 TSN. 542.000. It must be proved with the same quantum of evidence as the crime itself. 19 People v. imposable penalty reclusion temporal period. pursuant to Article 64. maximum.23 WHEREFORE. she only presented a list of deliberately adopted the particular means.19 himself. that the the victim was not in a position employed defend him.22 damages Thus.00 established as with mitigating nor aggravating circumstances in the commission of the crime. Hence. 01038 finding appellant guilty of murder is P50. temperate damages when it appears that the heirs of the victim suffered cannot 255 Page GRANTED. . as as minimum.000. 7-10. madam. we cannot sustain the trial court’s award for actual damages in the amount of P113.00 line with as civil indemnity and months reclusion temporal. While the victim’s mother. The award of actual should be supported by receipts.

concur.00 as temperate damages. ** In lieu of Justice Minita V.MODIFIED. No. Abesamis. Austria-Martinez. He is also ordered to pay the heirs of Clinton Badinas the amounts of P50. p.00 as civil indemnity.000. 322 322 256 Page SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Vargas vs.000.—If no unlawful aggression attributable to the victim is established. 2008. complete or incomplete. 130.00 as moral damages and P25. 22 People v.000. p. Primo . Chico-Nazario. Corona. to 17 years and 4 months of reclusion temporal. 21 Records. as maximum. 140985.** Nachura and Reyes.. 542 SCRA 301(2008)] 20 TSN. De sentenced to suffer the penalty of imprisonment of 10 years of prision mayor. We find appellant guilty of Homicide and is hereby Notes. and unexpected vs. 484 dated January 11. 2003. not sudden sufficient. reasonable necessity of the means employed to repel the aggression. 264 SCRA 200 [1996]) Self-defense as a justifying circumstance on must the on part satisfy of the following (2) requirements—(1) and (3) lack of unlawful aggression the of victim. 2007. Dorado. there can be no self-defense. JJ. (People vs. Petition partially granted. (People vs. P50. sufficient provocation the part the accused. SO ORDERED. G. 23 Id. 6. per Special Order No.R. Tabuelog. 531 SCRA 300. Bautista. 254 SCRA 621 [1996]) Unlawful threatening aggression or presupposes attitude an is actual. March 11. 303 SCRA 61 [1999]) ——o0o—— [People vs. as minimum. _______________ attack or imminent danger on the life and limb of a person—a mere intimidating (People Gracia. August 28.

ACTUAL OR COMPENSATORY. similar offense resulting in physical injuries quasi-delicts causing physical injuries.—Where a mishap occurs resulting in the death of a passenger being transported by a common carrier the spouse. fright. wounded are or the other social criminal or humiliation. anxiety. seduction.ID. 109 Phil. 16. damages shock.. [52] 8593. serious besmirched and reputation. slander or any other form of defamation. 1. L-14333. 257 3.—He establish and who prove claims by actual or compensatory actual damages pecuniary must loss competent evidence (Malonzo vs.) 2. mental anguish. Galang. adultery concubinage. EXTENT OF PROOF OF RECOVERY. violation of specific provisions of the Civil Code on human relations.ID. 60 Off. Gaz. abduction. 28 January 1961] OSCAR VENTANILLA. DEATH OF PASSENGER THRU MISHAP.. of a are recoverable only when physical suffering. illegal or arbitrary detention or arrest. libel.—Moral feelings. GREGORIO CENTENO. plaintiff and appellant vs. and willful injury to property. descendants and ascendants of the deceased Page .[No. malicious prosecution disrespect for the dead or wrongful interference with funerals. defendant and appellee. MORAL DAMAGES WHEN RECOVERABLE.. illegal search. injury rape.DAMAGES.. proximate lascivious moral result acts.

which certified the case to this Court on the ground that only questions of law are raised. enclosing copies of the decision and that notice of appeal. After trial. 1961 813 Ventanilla vs. Pascual for appellee.000. Court of First Instance of Nueva Ecija). 1955. Espinosa & Ventanilla for appellant. 110. Centeno Plaintiff Oscar Ventanilla after receiving the letter and copy of the 258 Page Artemio R. and a notice of appeal was filed by Atty. as found by the trial court. 18833 was an action for the recovery of P4. if the defendants wanton..ID. 4. 813 RECOVERED right and the RIGHT will DISCRETION or not COURT. The plaintiff appealed to the Court of Appeals. are: TEMPERATE MODERATE DAMAGES.. fraudulent. oppressive or malevolent manner. the Court rendered judgment in favor of the plaintiff and against the defendant. plaintiff retained the service of Atty.—When claimant been compensatory nominal damages by the trial court. Gregorio Centeno to represent him and prosecute the case. Gregorio Centeno on July 21.00 together with damages. Exhibit A. Decision unfavorable to the plaintiff was received by Atty. JANUARY 28. ordering the latter to pay the former the sum of P200 as nominal damages and the costs. 18833 of the Court of First Instance of Manila. VOL.passenger are entitled to demand moral damages for mental anguish by reason of the passenger's death.ID. The facts. J. reckless. Centeno wrote to the plaintiff the letter. Centeno on July 25. Alejandrino. On July 30.— should be Exemplary or corrective damages cannot be recovered as a matter of Court decide acted whether in a they adjudicated. PADILLA. 2063. MAY OF NOT BE In civil case No. Edilberto Alejandrino and Aida G. Civil Case No. Atty. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. Centeno in his Office in Manila about August .: decision went to see Atty. 812 812 PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Ventanilla vs. The defendant did not appeal. 1955. and stating that he was not conformable to the decision and had not hesitated to file the notice of appeal. 1955. Leuterio. such award precludes the recovery of temperate or moderate damages. EXEMPLARY AS OR OF CORRECTIVE BUT AT DAMAGES. J. attorney's fees and costs (civil No. APPEAL from a judgment of the Court of First Instance of Nueva Ecija. Centeno 5. entitled Oscar Ventanilla vs. 18833. entitled AWARD OR actual to OF or NOMINAL DAMAGES damages PRECLUDES the has but RECOVERY is not awarded This is an action to recover damages claimed to have been suffered by the plaintiff due to the defendant's neglect in perfecting within the reglementary period his appeal from an adverse judgment rendered by the Court of First Instance of Manila in civil case No.

The plaintiff Ventanilla. Plaintiff. which he could have recovered if the appeal had duly been perfected. Centeno . Centeno at that time the amount for the appeal bond. moderate.00. On August 17. Centeno returned to Manila and went to his office at about 10 o'clock in the morning of August 22. for P60. It was. The fact that the record on appeal was admitted for filing is the best evidence that Atty. is one is to entitled as to an or adequate compensation only for such pecuniary loss suffered by him as duly Such compensation referred actual compensatory damages. by not paying the appeal bond of P60. however. Atty. Centeno by telephone and that he issued the check upon instruction of Atty. indicates 259 Page has been filed within the time prescribed by law. for it is not in his power to determine whether or not the appeal bond had not in fact filed any appeal bond. Exhibit 1. Centeno was in Laguna campaigning for his candidacy as member of the Provincial Board. moral. decided to file a cash appeal bond of P60. but was informed by the clerk. 1955. The record on appeal was disapproved because it was filed out of time and no appeal bond had been filed by the plaintiff. and not P2.) 814 814 PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Ventanilla vs. Centeno was in Laguna. Centeno. 1955. He cashed the check. and in not ordering the appellee to pay the appellant the sum of P500 as attorney's fee. 1955. and then went to the office of the Clerk of Court to file the appeal bond. and delivered the same to Leonardo Sanchez with instruction to give the same to Atty. Article 2199 of the new Civil Code provides: Except he has as provided proved. Atty. 33-36. Centeno. In fact the record on appeal was accepted and filed on September 5. Centeno that afternoon. Atty. Centeno. Centeno prepared the motion for extension of time to file the record on appeal. instead of executing an appeal bond. Exhibit D. He went to the office of Atty. Leonardo Sanchez. rec. 18833. Leonardo Sanchez had informed the plaintiff that Atty. Centeno informed him that he intended to appeal and plaintiff agreed. Neither the Clerk of Court. however.000 and moral and actual damages. According to Atty. He who claims actual or compensatory damages must establish and prove by competent evidence actual pecuniary loss. and that it was only at that time he came to know that the period of appeal had expired. Centeno at about 4 o'clock on August 18. Centeno upon his arrival. Centeno wrote a letter to the plaintiff enclosing therein forms for an appeal bond. (pp. with the Marvel Building Corporation. by law or by stipulation.5. that Atty.00 as appeal bond. on app. Atty. Centeno it was not accepted because the period of appeal had already expired. negligence and failure to perfect within the reglementary period his appeal from an adverse judgment rendered in civil case No. Centeno The appellant to claims pay him that the trial or court erred in not ordering temperate the or appellee actual compensatory. therefore improbable that he could contact Atty. did not have with Atty. The Court does not believe plaintiff's testimony that Sanchez had contacted Atty. and if he were in Manila. in ordering the appellee to pay the appellant only the sum of P200. he lost his chance to recover from the defendants therein the sum of P4. About the middle of August 1955. Plaintiff then issued the check Exhibit 1. 1 The appellant's bare allegation that by reason of the appellee's indifference. and because of his reluctance to pay the premium on the appeal bond. or any of the employees had the 'right to refuse an appeal bond that is being filed. Centeno. and exemplary or corrective damages. The Court does not likewise believe the testimony of Atty.000 as nominal damages. but no appeal bond has been filed by Atty. Sanchez could not have known the whereabouts of Atty. which was filed only on August 20. 1955.

110. Moral damages may be recovered in the following and Page analogous cases: defamation. provisions Code on moral damages state: ______________ 1 Malonzo vs. form or of other lascivious or arrest. 32. 9 of this article. or abused. concubinage.that his claim for actual or compensatory damages is highly speculative. slander or any other form of defamation. Willful injury to property may be a legal ground for awarding moral damages if the court should find that. (10) Acts and actions referred to in articles 21. rape. 2219. (3) Seduction. suffering. quasi-delicts causing physical injuries. similar incapable anguish. 26. 27. mental anxiety. 18833. (8) Malicious prosecution. and wounded feelings worthy for the of his appellee's trust and faithful to his client and of the new Civil confidence. feelings. 1961 815 Ventanilla vs. by a serious anxiety upon learning that his for and adversary open mere entitled failure technicality. abducted. The parents of the female seduced. The spouse. (6) Illegal search. seduction. serious social damages include besmirched and physical reputation. malicious . illegal adultery search.. 28. The same rule applies to breaches of contract where the defendant acted fraudulently or in bad faith. The appellant claims that he suffered mental anguish upon learning that his appeal had not been perf ected within the reglementary period due to the appellee's had won he negligence. Moral fright. serious anxiety. 2220. 30. or any other rape. (9) Acts mentioned in article 309. 815 34. descendants. or abduction. Moral damages are recoverable only when physical suffering. ascendants. shock. (5) Illegal or arbitrary detention or arrest. and 35. abduction. 3 of this article. besmirched reputation. in the order named. Art. 2217. to to collect remain The besmirched the sum of reputation P4. mental wounded Though anguish. under the circumstances. social humiliation. Galang 109 Phil. may also recover moral damages. Art. slander illegal arbitrary detention 260 pecuniary computation. humiliation. injury. such damages are justly due. acts. wounded feelings. losing the opportunity to substantiate his claim made while testifying in court that was damages from the defendants in civil case No. or libel. and brothers and sisters may bring the VOL. 29. 16. moral shock. referred to in No.000 (1) A criminal offense resulting in physical injuries. or other lascivious acts. and similar injury are the proximate result of a criminal offense resulting in physical injuries. Centeno ART. (7) Libel. (4) Adultery or concubinage. Hence he is not entitled to such damages. raped. (2) Quasi-delicts causing physical injuries. moral of action mentioned in No. JANUARY 28. fright. moral damages may be recovered if they are the proximate result of the defendant's wrongful act or omission.

prosecution. 109 Phil. Figueras.4 and so the . JANUARY 28. new Civil Code. 2219 specifically mentions "quasi-delicts causing physical 2 Necesito vs. Galang. oppressive or malevolent manner. (104 Phil. disrespect for the dead or wrongful interference with funerals. this Court categorically stated that— * * * Art. As regards exemplary or corrective damages also claimed by the appellant. the special torts referred to in Art. 414.3 Since the appellant's cause of action for recovery of moral damages is not predicated upon any of those specifically enumerated. 321) excepting of course. 2219). the spouse. be proved with certainty. resolution on motion for reconsideration. 108 Phil. Art. from the nature of the case. To this we may 816 trial court did not err in refusing to award temperate or moderate damages to the appellant. 714.. supra. descendants and ascendants of the deceased passenger are entitled to demand moral damages for mental anguish by reason of the passenger's death. Gaz. 26.. 96 Phil. 4 In view of the provision of article 2224. 266.2 In Malonzo vs. Miranda. 2219) and in Arts.6 the trial court has judiciously.. may be recovered when the court finds that some pecuniary loss has been suffered but its amount cannot. and willful injury to property. which provides that "Temperate or moderate damages.. 5 if the defendant acted in a wanton. 57 Off. 28. 56 Off. 309 (par. 110. [44] 7938). 29. thereby implying that all other quasi-delicts not resulting in physical injuries are excluded (Strebel vs. reckless. 1961 817 Ventanilla vs. since it cannot be recovered as a matter of right and the court will decide whether or not they _______________ 816 PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Ventanilla vs. VOL. 3 See also Mercado vs... 9. 34 and 35 on the chapter on human relations (par. Concerning temperate or moderate damages claimed by the appellant. 10. Bautista. [23] 4023). Parás. 11 September 1958. Centeno add that where a mishap occurs resulting in the death of a passenger being transported by a common carrier. violation of specific provisions of the Civil Code on human relations. 30. 21. Centeno should be adjudicated.. wisely and correctly exercised its discretion in not awarding them to the appellant." as an instance when moral damages may be allowed. such award precludes the recovery of temperate or moderate damages. 75. Art. Fores vs. Gaz. (105 Phil. Rex Taxicab vs. 261 Page considering that he is not entitled to actual or compensatory damages but has been awarded nominal damages by the trial court. fraudulent." 817 injuries. 32. the trial court did not err in declining to award moral damages to him. Court of Appeals. 27. which are more than nominal but less than compensatory damages.

18833 had been the duly perfected. 7 Considering the circumstances. January 28. because the appeal was not Page . new Civil Code.. not for Nevertheless. Barrera. JJ. defendant-appellee. in not depositing on time the appeal bond and filing the record on appeal within the extension period granted by the court. As regards attorney's fees. Bengzon. and Dizon. plaintiff-appellant. according to the circumstances of the case.—The 262 5 Article 2233. The assessment of nominal damages is left to the discretion of the court. nominal damages 7 Article 2216. The judgment appealed from is affirmed. Judgment affirmed. 1961. Labrador. was considered highly speculative. J.Relative to the sufficiency of the sum of P200 as nominal damages awarded by the trial court to the appellant. article 2221 of the new Civil Code provides: Nominal damages are adjudicated in order that a right of the plaintiff. same Code. J. Centeno. same Code. the amount of P200 awarded by the trial court to the appellant considering as nominal that damages may seem are exiguous. C. Damages. claim of a client for damages against a lawyer. and that even if the appeal in civil case No.. 1961 215 Ventanilla vs. __________ [Ventanilla vs. without special pronouncement as to costs. Parás. Del Castillo vs. the amount awarded to the appellant for nominal damages should not be disturbed. L. 811(1961)] VOL. Reyes. a lawyer. 110 Phil. nominal amount is the appellant seeks recover all damages excessive. L-14333. Gutiérrez David. as found by the trial court. 1. Centeno indemnification of loss suffered but for the vindication or recognition of a right violated or invaded. Attorneys. Bautista Angelo. GREGORIO CENTENO.000 it was not an assurance to that the as the appellant would succeed in recovering the amount he had claimed in his complaint.. _______________ No. OSCAR VENTANILLA. Guerrero. who failed to perfect the client's appeal from a judgment. which brought about the refusal by the trial court to allow the record on appeal. 6 Article 2232. The claim was based on the theory that. may be vindicated or recognized. the appellee may not be compelled to satisfy it. concur. JANUARY 28. After weighing carefully considerations. of P2. B. 108 Phil. Effect of lawyer's failure to perfect appeal. 818 818 PHILIPPINE REPORTS ANNOTATED Edralin vs. Edralin new Civil Code. 985. and not for the purpose of indemnifying the plaintiff for any loss suffered by him. since the appellant's claim does not fall under any of those enumerated in article 2208. and the degree of negligence committed by the appellee.. vs. which has been violated or invaded by the defendant. Paredes.

perfected,

the

client

was

not

able

to

recover

on

appeal

moral

and

Same; Damages due from lawyer who was negligent in not perfecting client's appeal.—The award of P200 as nominal damages to a client who sued his lawyer for damages by reason of the latter's negligence in not perfecting the client's appeal, was considered sufficient under the facts of the instant case. APPEAL from a decision of the Court of First Instance of Manila.

actual damages "from the adverse party. Same: When moral damages are recoverable.—Moral damages may be recovered in the cases mentioned in article 2219 of the New Civil Code and in the case of the death of a passenger being transported by a common carrier. No moral damages may be recovered for quasi-delicts not causing physical injuries. Moral damages cannot be recovered in an action by the client 216

The facts are -stated in the opinion of the Court. Espinosa & Ventanilla for plaintiff-appellant. Artemio R. Pascual for defendant-appellee.

216 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Ventanilla vs. Centeno against a lawyer who was negligent in not perfecting the client's appeal from a judgment. Same; Temperate damages.—Moderate damages cannot be recovered in case no actual damages, but only nominal damages, were awarded. Same; Exemplary damages.—Corrective damages cannot be recovered as a matter of right. They can be recovered, in the discretion of the court, if the defendant acted in a wanton, fraudulent, reckless, oppressive or malevolent manner.

PADILLA, J.:

This is an action to recover damages claimed to have been suffered by the plaintiff due to the defendant's neglect in perfecting within the reglementary period his appeal from an adverse judgment rendered by the Court of First Instance of Manila in civil case No. 18833, attorney's fees and costs (civil No. 2063, Court of First Instance of Nueva Ecija). After trial, the Court rendered judgment in favor of the plaintiff and against the defendant, ordering the latter to pay the former the sum of P200 as nominal damages and the costs. The plaintiff appealed to the Court of Appeals, which certified the case to this Court on the ground that only questions of law are raised. The defendant did not appeal. The facts, as found by the trial court, are: In Civil Case No. 18833 of the Court of First Instance of Manila,

263

Same; Nominal damages.—The assessment of nominal damages is left to the discretion of the court, according to the circumstances of the case. They are not intended for indemnification of loss suffered but for the vindication or recognition of a right violated or invaded.

entitled Oscar Ventanilla vs. Edilberto Alejandrino and 217

Page

known the whereabouts of Atty, Centeno. It was, therefore improbable VOL. 1, JANUARY 28, 1961 217 Ventanilla vs. Centeno Aida G. Alejandrino, plaintiff retained the service of Atty. Gregorio damages. Gregorio that he could contact Atty. Centeno that afternoon. On August 17, Atty. Centeno prepared the motion for extension of time to file the record on appeal, Exhibit D, which was filed only on August 20, 1955. Atty. Centeno returned to Manila and went to his office at about 10 o'clock in the morning of August 22. He cashed the check, Exhibit 1, with the Marvel Building Corporation, and then went to the office of the Clerk of Court to file the appeal bond. According to Atty. Centeno it was not accepted because the period of appeal had already expired, and that it was only at that time he came to know that the period of appeal had expired. The Court does not likewise believe the testimony of Atty. Centeno. Neither the Clerk of Court, or any of the employees had the right to refuse an appeal bond that is being filed power to determine whether 218 for it is not in his

Centeno to represent him and prosecute the case. Civil Case No. 18833 was an action Decision for the to recovery the of P4,000.00 was together with by Atty. unfavorable plaintiff received

Centeno on July 21, 1955, and a notice of appeal was filed by Atty. Centeno on July 25, 1955. On July 30, 1955, Atty. Centeno wrote to the plaintiff the letter, Exhibit A, enclosing copies of the decision and that notice of appeal, and stating that he was not conformable to the decision and had not hesitated to file the notice of appeal. Plaintiff Oscar Ventanilla after receiving the letter and copy of the decision went to see Atty. Centeno in his Office in Manila about August 5, 1955. Atty. Centeno informed him that he intended to appeal and plaintiff agreed. Plaintiff, however, did not leave with Atty. Centeno at that time the amount for the appeal bond. About the middle of Aug. 1955, Atty. Centeno wrote a letter to the plaintiff enclosing therein forms for an appeal bond. The plaintiff Ventanilla, however, instead of executing an appeal bond, and because of his reluctance to pay the premium on the appeal bond, decided to file a cash appeal bond of P60.00. He went to the office of Atty. Centeno at about 4 o'clock on August 18, 1955, but was informed by the clerk, Leonardo Sanchez, that Atty. Centeno was in Laguna campaigning for his candidacy as member of the Provincial Board. Plaintiff then issued the check Exhibit 1, for P60.00 as appeal bond, and delivered the same to Leonardo Sanchez with instruction to give the same to Atty. Centeno upon his arrival, The Court does not believe plaintiff's testimony that Sanchez had contacted Atty. Centeno by telephone and that he issued the check upon instruction of Atty. Centeno. Leonardo Sanchez had informed the plaintiff that Atty. Centeno was in Laguna, and if he were in Manila, Sanchez could not have

218 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Ventanilla vs. Centeno or not the appeal bond has been filed within the time prescribed by law. In fact the record on appeal was accepted and filed on September 5, 1955, but no appeal bond has been filed by Atty. Centeno. The fact that the record on appeal was admitted for filing is the best evidence that Atty. Centeno had not in fact filed any appeal bond. The record on appeal was disapproved because it was filed out, of time and no appeal bond had been filed by the plaintiff. (pp. 33-36, rec. on app.) The appellant to claims pay him that the trial or court erred in not ordering temperate the or

264

appellee

actual

compensatory,

moral,

Page

moderate, and exemplary or corrective damages; in ordering the appellee to pay the appellant only the sum of P200, and not P2,000 as nominal

damages; and in not ordering the appellee to pay the appellant the sum of P500 as attorney's fee. Article 2199 of the new Civil Code provides: Except he has as provided proved. by law or by stipulation, is one is to entitled as to an or

VOL. 1, JANUARY 28, 1961 219 Ventanilla vs. Centeno sum of P4.000 and damages from the defendants in civil case No.

adequate compensation only for such pecuniary loss suffered by him as duly Such compensation referred actual compensatory damages. He who claims actual or compensatory damages must establish and

18833; and wounded feelings for the appellee's failure to remain faithful to his client and worthy of his trust and confidence. The provisions of the new Civil Code on moral damages state: Art. fright, shocks, 2217. Moral damages include and physical reputation, similar suffering, wounded Though mental anguish, moral of

prove by competent evidence actual pecuniary loss.1 The appellant's bare allegation that by reason of the appellee's indifference, negligence and failure to perfect within the reglementary period his appeal from an adverse judgment rendered in civil case No. 18833, by not paying the appeal bond of P60, he lost his chance to recover from the defendants therein the sum of P4,000 and moral and actual damages, which he could have recovered if the appeal had duly been perfected, indicates that his claim for actual or compensatory damages is highly speculative. Hence he is not entitled to such damages. The appellant claims that he suffered mental anguish upon learning that his appeal had not been perfected within the reglementary period due to the appellee's had negligence; won by a serious mere anxiety upon learning that his for adversary technicality; besmirched reputation

serious social

anxiety,

besmirched

feelings,

humiliation,

injury.

incapable

pecuniary computation, moral damages may be recovered if they are the proximate result of the defendant's wrongful act or omission. Art. 2219. Moral damages may be recovered in the following and

analogous cases: (1) A criminal offense resulting in physical injuries; (2) Quasi-delicts causing physical injuries; (3) Seduction, abduction, rape, or other lascivious acts; (4) Adultery or concubinage; (5) Illegal or arbitrary detention or arrest; (6) Illegal search; (7) Libel, slander or any other form of defamation;

losing the opportunity to substantiate his claim made while testifying in open court that he was entitled to collect the _______________

265

1 Malonzo vs. Galang, G.R. No. L-13851, 27 July 1960. 219

(8) Malicious prosecution; (9) Acts mentioned in article 309;

Page

(10) Acts and actions referred to in articles 21, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32, 34, and 35. The parents of the female seduced, abducted, raped, or abused, referred to in No. 3 of this article, may also recover moral damages. The spouse, descendants, ascendants, and brothers and sisters may

demand moral damages for mental anguish by reason of the passenger's death.2 that— x x x Art. 2219 specifically mentions "quasi-delicts causing physical In Malonzo vs. Galang, supra, this Court categorically stated

injuries," as an instance when moral damages may be allowed, thereby implying that all other quasi-delicts not resulting in physical injuries are excluded (Strebel vs. Figueras, G.R. L-4722, Dec. 29, 1954), excepting, of course, the special torts referred to in Art. 309 (par. 9, Art. 2219) and in Arts. 21, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32, 34 and 35 on the chapter on human relations (par. 10, Art. 2219).3 Since the appellant's cause of action for recovery of moral damages is

bring the action mentioned in No. 9 of this article, in the order named. Art. 2220. Willful injury to property may be a legal ground for awarding moral damages if the court should find that, under the circumstances, such damages are justly due. The same rule applies to breaches of contract where the defendant acted fraudulently or in bad faith. Moral moral result damages shocks, of a are social recoverable humiliation, offense only and when similar in physical injury suffering, are the mental

not predicated upon any of those specifically enumerated, the trial court did not err in declining to award moral damages to him. Concerning temperate or moderate damages claimed by the appellant,

anguish, fright, serious anxiety, besmirched reputation, wounded feelings, proximate criminal resulting physical injuries, quasi-delicts

causing physical injuries, seduction, abduction, rape, or. other lascivious acts, adultery or concubinage, illegal or 220

considering that he is not entitled to actual or compensatory damages but has been awarded nominal damages by the trial court, such award precludes the recovery of temperate or moderate damages,4 and so the trial court did not err in re- fusing to award temperate or moderate damages to the appellant. _______________

220 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Ventanilla vs. Centeno arbitrary detention or arrest, illegal search, libel, slander or any other form of defamation, malicious prosecution, disrespect for the dead or 2 Necesito vs. Paras, G.R. No. L-10605-06, resolution on motion 11 September 1958; Fores vs. Miranda, G.R. No. for L-

reconsideration, September 1960.

12163, 4 March 1959; Rex Taxicab vs. Bautista, G.R. No. L-15382, 30

266

wrongful interference with funerals, violation of specific provisions of the Civil Code on human relations, and willful injury to property. To this we may add that where a mishap by occurs a resulting in the death the of a passenger being transported common carrier, spouse,

3 See also Mercado vs. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. L-14342, 80 May 1960. 4 In view of the provision of article 2224, damages, new Civil Code, more which than

Page

descendants and ascendants of the deceased passenger are entitled to

provides

that "temperate

or moderate

which

are

nominal but less than compensatory damages. may be recovered when the court finds that some pecuniary loss has been suffered but its amount cannot, from the nature of the case, be proved With certainty." 221

court

to

the

appellant considering

as

nominal that

damages

may

seem are

exiguous. not for

Nevertheless,

nominal

damages

indemnification of loss suffered but for the vindication or recognition of a right violated or invaded; and that even if the appeal in civil case No. 18833 had been the duly perfected, of P2,000 it was not an assurance to that the as the appellant would succeed in recovering the amount he had claimed in his complaint, amount is the appellant seeks recover all

VOL. 1, JANUARY 28, 1961 221 Ventanilla vs. Centeno As regards exemplary or corrective damages also claimed by the

nominal

damages

excessive.

After

weighing

carefully

considerations, the amount awarded to the appellant for nominal damages should not be disturbed. As regards attorney's fees, since the appellant's claim does not fall

under any of those enumerated in article _______________

appellant. since it cannot be recovered as a matter of right and the court will decide defendant acted whether or not they should be adjudicated,5 in a wanton, fraudulent, reckless, if the or oppressive

malevolent manner,6 the trial court has judiciously, wisely and correctly exercised its discretion in not awarding them to the appellant. Relative to the sufficiency of the sum of P200 as nominal damages awarded by the trial court to the appellant, article 2221 of the new Civil Code provides: "Nominal damages are adjudicated in order that a right of the plaintiff, which has been violated or invaded by the defendant, may be vindicated or recognized, and not for the purpose of indemnifying the plaintiff for any loss suffered by him. The assessment of nominal damages is left to the discretion of the court, according by to the circumstances lawyer, of in the not case.7 Considering on time the the circumstances, as found by the trial court, and the degree of negligence

5 Article 2233, new Civil Code. 6 Article 2232, same Code. 7 Article 2216, same Code; Del Castillo vs. Guerrero, G.R. No. L-11994, 26 July 1960. 222

222 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Edralin vs. Edralin 2208, new Civil Code, the appellee may not be compelled to satisfy it.

267

committed

the

appellee, a

depositing

appeal bond and filing the record on appeal within the extension period granted by the court, which. brought about the refusal by the trial court to allow the record on appeal, the amount of P200 awarded by the trial

Page

The judgment appealed from is affirmed, without special pronouncement as to costs. Paras, C.J., Bengzon, Bautista, Angelo, Labrador, Reyes, J.B.L., Barrera, Gutierrez David, Paredes and Dizon, JJ., concur. Concepcion, J., took no part. Judgment affirmed. Note.—See Heredia vs. Salinas, 10 Phil. 157, which involves also action for damages filed by a client against a lawyer who failed to perfect an appeal. ——————— [Ventanilla vs. Centeno, 1 SCRA 215(1961)] G.R. No. 179278. PEOPLE OF THE March 28, 2008.* PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. CHARLIE VILLA,

JR., accused-appellant. Criminal Law; Murder; Justifying Circumstances; Self-Defense; Requisites.— Self-defense as a justifying circumstance may exempt an accused from criminal liability when the following requisites are met, namely: (1) there was an unlawful aggression on the part of the victim; (2) the means employed to prevent or repel such aggression was reasonably necessary; and (3) the person defending himself had not provoked the victim into committing the act of aggression. The burden of proving by clear and convincing evidence that the killing was justified is on the accused. In doing so, he must rely on the strength of his own evidence and not on the weakness of that of the prosecution. _______________

268

Page

* THIRD DIVISION. 481

manner that would or the 269 witnesses. Same. Flight. appellate declarant’s truth and such testimony position discriminate between 482 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. judge who. who that treachery or no can be of appreciated: execution for be (1) the employment offended manner methods has. had because said or findings are generally arbitrarily A scrutiny conclusive the of facts the and and binding upon this Court unless it be manifestly shown that the lower overlooked of disregarded in the case. appellate courts will not disturb the credence. Jr. conduct and position to discriminate between truth and falsehood. or lack of it.—The time-tested doctrine is that the matter of assigning values to declarations performed can conduct weigh and on by the the witness trial to stand in light is of best unlike the and most competently magistrates. Villa. Appellant’s behavior right after the incident runs contrary to his avowed innocence. thus. accorded by the trial court to the testimonies of witnesses. MARCH 28. appellant immediately went after the victim as VOL. Two essential elements are required of in order means. circumstances significance records shows that no such error was committed by either the RTC or the Court of Appeals. and without warning. The time-tested doctrine is that the matter of assigning values to declarations on the witness stand is best and most competently can performed weigh by the trial judge in who. appellant’s posture can hardly succeed. The unlawful aggression did not originate from the victim but from the appellant himself. Witnesses. Same. Same. With this evidence adduced by the prosecution. appellant poured his anger towards the victim by punching the latter’s nape until he fell unconscious. and (2) deliberate or conscious choice of means. Same. 550. demeanor. treachery information and proved during the trial.—The reason of the falsehood. Feeling responsible for it. This is especially true when the trial court’s findings have been affirmed by the appellate courts court. to the police authorities are circumstances highly indicative of guilt and negate his claim of self-defense. himself by Elements. he fled. Page . Same.—From the testimonies of the prosecution essence of treachery is a deliberate and sudden attack that renders the unprepared suddenness and severity of the attack. Not suspecting that the appellant harbored rancor. Same. Same. of opportunity must self-defense alleged in retaliation. it is readily clear that the first requisite of self-defense is wanting. He was the aggressor. light of unlike the appellate magistrates. 2008 481 People vs.Nurturing that ill feeling. appellant realized what he had done. The act of the accused of fleeing from the scene of the crime instead of reporting the incident to the police authorities are circumstances highly indicative of guilt and negate his claim of self-defense. Same. Jr. methods or execution. such testimony the latter was leaving. the victim walked on his way home. to defend Treachery. Villa. With the brass knuckle around his right fist. ensure the offender’s safety from any retaliatory act on the part of the party. Moreover. Appellant was offended when the victim reprimanded him by telling him not to make fun of the sleeping child. When he came to his senses. Thus. His act of fleeing from the scene of the crime instead of reporting the incident 482 declarant’s demeanor. unable Aggravating and Circumstances. thereby exposing his back to the attack of the appellant. victim Same. It is an aggravating circumstance that qualifies the killing of the person to murder. Same.

00 the New and as as Civil a damages serve Article serious Appeals in CA-G. finding appellant Charlie Villa. Same. When a crime is committed with an aggravating circumstance. since the qualifying circumstance of treachery was proven by the prosecution.000. 550. CR-H. guilty of the crime of murder and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua. the family of the victim incurred expenses for the wake and funeral. Public Attorney’s Office for accused-appellant. No.—In addition to these damages. and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. abuse of superior strength. exemplary Code—to either as qualifying is a justified deterrent or generic. did then and there willfully.000. and evident premeditation. Same. to the heirs of the victim is justified. armed with a brass knuckle. under to an award 2230 of of 25. Jr. _______________ Page . Jr. 2008 483 People vs. The accusatory portion of the Information reads: ‚That sometime on or about 18 July 1997 at around 3:00 o’clock in the morning. Rizal. Same. when death occurs.C. Province of Rizal.00. CHICO-NAZARIO. MARCH 28. appellant Charlie Villa. J.R. unlawfully and feloniously attack and assault one Rodolfo Arevalo y Gamboa by punching him on the left nape with the use of the hand where he wrongdoings vindication of undue sufferings and wanton invasion of the rights of an injured. and acting with treachery. with intent to kill. awarded temperate damages. This either kind of qualifying damage is or generic. the family of the victim incurred expenses for the wake and funeral. 00859 which affirmed the Decision2 dated 9 October 2002 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Antipolo.—Although the prosecution receipts damages presented evidence The where that award no the of heirs incurred expenses. was charged before the RTC of Antipolo. the above-named accused. of amount of P25. Fourth Judicial Region. Villa.000. when death occurs. exemplary damages should also be awarded to the heirs of the victim. of Temperate actual damages was are awarded in where the no trial an injured. Philippines.Same. In an Information dated 6 October 1997. Jr. in no the were are presented. The Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee. Branch 35. APPEAL from a decision of the Court of Appeals. Same. in the Municipality of Antipolo. or as a punishment for those guilty of outrageous conduct. Rizal with the crime of murder under Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code. Damages.: For review is the Decision1 dated 13 March 2007 of the Court of documentary evidence damages presented because it is reasonable to presume that. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. or as a punishment for those guilty of outrageous conduct. Temperate documentary evidence actual damages was presented in the trial because it is reasonable to presume that. Code.00 as exemplary damages is justified under Article 2230 of the serve deterrent to serious wrongdoings and as a vindication of undue sufferings and wanton invasion of the rights of 483 270 VOL. as amended. intended to an award as of a P25. When a crime is committed with an aggravating New Civil circumstance.

7 Id. 2 Penned by Judge Mauricio M.4 Thereafter. p. the person at the wake who was hit by appellant and who was present when the punching of the victim took place. Zone 10. At the trial. Barangay was also Roque.‛3 During his arraignment on 26 November 1998. testified on the cause of death of the same. ‚Anong pakialam mo?‛8 Soon after.‛7 Appellant reacted and said. 6. Justice Rosmari Jr. p. VOL. 485 assistance of counsel de oficio. Dr. Jr.5 He then turned his direction to a sleeping boy and started Villarama.. Ma. at p. the son of the deceased-victim who saw the events prior to.. CA Rollo. pp. Appellant. who attending wake. Rodolfo left the wake and headed for home. the appellant. hitting him on the nape. 4. the medico-legal officer who conducted the autopsy on the cadaver of the victim. MARCH 28. 6 Id. followed Rodolfo and punched the latter three concurring. and (3) Roger Herrera (Roger).9 Rodolfo fell to the ground. but Rodolfo 3:00 Arevalo of (Rodolfo) same located day. Jr. Villa. 4-16. Rodolfo was there at the wake drinking coffee. the Antipolo City. and D. who was wearing a brass knuckle wrapped in a handkerchief. at all. 484 484 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Mariflor Punzalan putting some biscuits into the boy’s mouth. 4 Id. 2008 485 271 On 18 July 1997.10 They asked appellant to help them carry Rodolfo. namely: (1) Orly Arevalo (Orly). during and after the killing of his father. suddenly boxed the face of a certain Marlo Rellosa for no reason Page .m.1 Penned Justices by Martin Associate S. Rivera. At around a.. Carandang P. Rollo. entered a ‚not guilty‛ plea. at p. who corroborated the testimony of Orly. to fives times. 5. 21. 19-25. at p. Cristina Freyra. the prosecution presented the oral testimonies of the three eyewitnesses to the incident. with the _______________ 3 Records.6 This caught the attention of Rodolfo who advised appellant not to disturb the boy and said. was wearing the brass knuckle thereby resulting in a skull fracture which caused the death of said Rodolfo Arevalo y Gamboa. 23 March 1999. with Associate Castillo. ‚Huwag mo pagtripan ang batang natutulog. 1. Some people tried to help Rodolfo and carried him to the house of his sister nearby. appellant. 550. trial ensued. a wake was held at in a house close to San that of People vs. 5 TSN. pp. Villa. (2) Marlo Rellosa (Marlo). 8 Id.

8-9. armed with a club. sell food to the FX drivers near the Cathedral of Antipolo City.17 The people in the wake asked both appellant and Rodolfo to leave the place. After asking money from his mother. testified that at exactly 3:00 a. pp. Appellant made fun of this boy by feeding him with biscuits. he was assisting his mother _______________ 9 TSN. 9.m. 8. Villa. p. She said that the three injuries were at the head and the other one was in the trunk. 11. he proceeded to the wake. Rodolfo berated appellant when he saw what the latter was doing with the boy and asked him why he was forcibly feeding the boy. a friend of appellant. 23 March 1999.19 Appellant just stood up and Page 272 .m. There he played cards with his friends. According to her. 10 TSN. was then that appellant boxed the victim on the nape once. the cause of death of the victim is Intracranial 486 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. 11 Id. Rodolfo was then transferred to a community hospital in the city. While he was walking. This reply of the appellant angered Rodolfo who picked up a stone and was about to hit the head of the appellant when the latter’s friends prevented Rodolfo. and Walter Villa.13 Per autopsy report. He then saw Rodolfo hit the hands of the appellant for forcibly feeding a little boy.appellant Appellant merely then smiled crossed and the told street them and that Rodolfo a just fainted. p. Randy Jose Gonzales. it was at the Amang Rodriguez Hospital in Marikina City that Rodolfo was accepted and treated.15 The defense. ‚Antayin mo ako. Near the table where they were playing was a little boy. invoked self-defense. But before Rodolfo left. of 18 July 1997. babalikan kita. Rodolfo passed away. 15 TSN. Jr. of the date in question.14 Medico-legal Officer Dr. Cristina Freyra found four external injuries on the cadaver of the victim. 21 January 1999. 486 boarded jeepney Manila. Appellant answered Rodolfo to mind his own business. It Hemorrhage Secondary to Skull Fracture. 1 June 1999. p. the testimonies of the appellant.. the victim came back and.‛18 Appellant went home. appellant’s younger brother.12 Rodolfo was rushed to Unciano Hospital in Antipolo City but the staff there refused to accept him since they felt they could not handle his severe injury. hit the former.. 11. but the hospital staff also refused to accept him for the same reason. 143. all of which were contusions. To prove this. 10. at p. he was there at the wake watching appellant gambling with some persons.m. 12 TSN. 21 January 1999. causing the latter to fall down. he uttered to the accused. Finally. the fracture in the right parietal occipital region could have been caused by a hard blunt object. of the same day. p. at p. on the other hand. at 3:00 p. Unfortunately.11 going to 13 Id. Ma. Appellant testified that on the afternoon of 17 July 1997 until 1:00 a. were presented.16 At around 2:30 in the morning of 18 July 1997. they went home. Defense witness Randy Jose Gonzales. 14 Records.

6. convicted the appellant of murder. Jr. 25 G. appellant was forced to face his attacker.left the place to avoid Rodolfo.m. The hitting incident was only recounted to him by a lad.20 Walter Villa declared on the witness stand that he arrived at the scene after the incident had happened. 147678-87. The dispositive portion of the RTC decision reads: ‚WHEREFORE. 7 20 TSN.21 At around 21 TSN. 8 March 2001.24 The trial court ordered the transmittal of the entire records of the case to this Court. period during be undergone preventive imprisonment shall serving the foregoing sentence. 22 Id. Appellant was . at p. He went along _______________ also ordered to indemnify the heirs of the victim in the amounts of P50. 134. 550.000. Rodolfo ran after appellant until he went past the latter. Villa. on 13 March 2007. and another P50.00 to P25.00 as death indemnity and another amount of Php50. 9 December 2000. 19 TSN. p. 7 December 2000. promulgated its Decision affirming the decision of the RTC in all respects. the RTC in its decision dated 9 October 2002. p. 2008 487 People vs. 5-6. Armed with a dos por dos. A fistfight ensued which ended with Rodolfo being floored face down.00 temperate damages.000.000. 7 July 2004. accused Charlie Villa. 25 January 2001. Having been cornered. referred the case to the Court of Appeals for intermediate review. Jr.00 as temperate damages. 18 Id. 3. appellant filed a notice of appeal. conformably to the ruling in People v.. 487 On 6 November 2002. Mateo. pp.000. except the award of temperate damages which it reduced from the amount of P50.000. MARCH 28. premises considered. and imposed upon him the penalty of reclusion perpetua.25 The Court of Appeals.00. The Court of Appeals decreed: _______________ VOL. Said accused is hereby further ordered amount accused his favor Php50. with the victim when the latter was brought to the hospital. p. is hereby found to as pay guilty the beyond heirs of reasonable Rodolfo The doubt Arevalo as y charged Gamboa which credited and the the in is hereby of had in sentenced to reclusion perpetua. p. pp. 433 SCRA 640. 7. 24 Records. he went home.000. 17 Id. 23 CA Rollo.22 Unconvinced that appellant killed the victim in self-defense.R.‛23 16 TSN. 9. however. This Court. 24-25.. at p.00 as death indemnity. 488 273 Page 7:00 a. Nos.

Appellant takes exception to the trial court’s verdict convicting him and maintains elements that he of was able to To self-defense. ‚WHEREFORE. It was fortunate that appellant was able to evade the first swing. The award of temperate damages is hereby reduced to P25. Self-defense as a justifying circumstance may exempt an accused from criminal liability when the following requisites are met. The assailed decision of the Regional Trial Court. Appellant insists 488 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Jr. MARCH 28. (2) the means employed to prevent or repel such aggression was reasonably necessary. Appellant likewise asserts that he was able to prove that there was unlawful aggression on the part of the victim since he initiated the attack by clobbering appellant. Before appellant could further harm him and put his life on the verge of danger. competent evidence all he states that there the was 26 Rollo. Appellant claims he hit the victim only once. 2002 finding accused-appellant Charlie Villa. p. _______________ JUSTIFYING CIRCUMSTANCE SELF-DEFENSE THE ACCUSED-APPELLANT. Jr. especially that fatal wound at the back. put nature up of It is the of the prove by this. namely: (1) there was an unlawful aggression on the part of the victim. the instant case. 489 that when he boxed the victim. injuries sustained by the victim. Villa.00. According to appellant. 550. but eventually he was hit by the second. appellant instinctively retaliated by boxing the victim on his nape.‛26 Hence. the act of punching the victim was commensurate with the onslaught initiated and continued by the latter. premises considered. 15. he lost his balance and fell down. but because the latter was drunk. Jr. the appellant assigns a single error: THE TRIAL COURT GRAVELY ERRED OF IN NOT CONSIDERING INTERPOSED THE BY VOL.appellant to an imminent and actual danger to his life. support unlawful aggression on the part of the deceased Rodolfo Arevalo. Having established all elements of selfdefense. the instant appeal is DISMISSED. thereby exposing conviction considering appellant number cannot successfully self-defense. Villa. Branch 73 of Antipolo City dated October 9. which he did not know would result in Rodolfo’s demise. appellant argues he deserves acquittal. wounds however. and the differs.27 The burden of proving by clear and Page 274 . sentencing him to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua is AFFIRMED. guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of murder. The Office of that the the Solicitor of General. and (3) the person defending himself had not provoked the victim into committing the act of aggression. In his brief. when the latter hit him with a club or a piece wood.000. he was merely employing reasonable means to repel the attack carried out by the victim. It avers that the failure of appellant to surrender to authorities after the incident and to report the same indicates he was not acting in self-defense. 2008 489 People vs.

14. p. 393 SCRA 488. Cabansay. in addition to the testimonies of prosecution witnesses who did not show any motive to falsely testify and implicate or point on erring finger at the accused inside the courtroom as the perpetrator of the crime. which had the opportunity to observe the demeanor of the witnesses on the stand. 24. 625 (2004). according to the medico-legal officer. We find no reason to reverse or alter the evaluation of the trial court as affirmed by the Court of Appeals. established that the accused’s act was not an act of self-defense but a determined effort to kill his victim. 693 to discriminate between truth and falsehood. 24. The varying accounts of the prosecution and of the defense as to who initiated the aggression was resolved by the RTC which gave full faith and credence to the testimonies of the prosecution witnesses over those of the defense.‛28 The trial court. These facts. 468 Phil. the Court finds the narrations of the sequence of events by the accused decidedly unconvincing. was the most fatal one among those sustained by the victim as it fractured . The time-tested on doctrine the is that the is matter best of assigning most values to declarations witness stand and competently performed by the trial judge who. 441 Phil.29 Thus. unlike appellate magistrates. because said findings are generally conclusive and binding upon this Court unless it be manifestly shown that the lower courts had overlooked or disregarded 490 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. accorded by the trial court to the testimonies of witnesses. the burden of evidence having been shifted. v.convincing evidence that the killing was justified is on the accused. The wound located at the back of the head of the victim indicates that the accused indeed followed the victim when he left the wake and punched him with a hard blunt object. 353 SCRA 686. 423 SCRA 617. x x x x _______________ his skull and eventually caused his death. Be that as it may. can weigh such testimony in light of the declarant’s demeanor. conduct and position 27 People (2001). 818. 247.30 This is especially true when the trial court’s findings have been affirmed by the appellate court. In doing so. Piedad. 490 v. Matito. self-defense on the part of the accused is further 28 CA Rollo. he must rely on the strength of his own evidence and not on the weakness of that of the prosecution. 30 People (2002). 406 Phil. was convinced of the veracity of the prosecution witnesses’ testimonies and not that of appellant’s. Such wound. 29 People v. 838-839. 257. Jr. thus: ‚In the present case. Villa. 502 arbitrarily the _______________ 275 Page negated by the physical evidence in the case. appellate courts will not disturb the credence. or lack of it.

I was attending a wake. sir. Jr. Antipolo. 492 appellant: Q: Mr. Q: Did you find out the reason why you were boxed by Charlie Villa.R.m. Marlo declared on the witness stand the incident prior to the killing of the victim. 1997 at 3:00 o’clock in the morning? A: Yes. in what place? A: Barangay San Roque. 118912.491 Q: Did you wake up from your sleep? A: Yes. MARCH 28. 430 SCRA 40. No. Jr. Villa. Q: Where was that. do you recall where you were on July 18. G. 550. Witness. _______________ straightforward manner as to what had really transpired on that fateful day. An assiduous evaluation of the transcript of stenographic notes indicates that the three agree prosecution on witnesses—Marlo. sir.31 A scrutiny of the records shows that no such error was committed by either the RTC or the Court of Appeals. A: In my face. . Q: What were you doing that time? A: I was sleeping. Jr. Villa. Jr. 50. inside or out where the wake was held? 492 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. VOL. Q: What is the full name of this Hapon you are referring to? A: Charlie Villa. Q: In what part of your body were you boxed by this Charlie Villa. and also his own experience at the hands of the 31 People v. 2008 491 People vs. facts and circumstances of significance in the case. points. Castillo. Q: Was there any particular reason why you woke up from your sleep? A: I was box (sic) by Hapon. Orly in and a Roger—whose candid and accounts material testified Q: Around what time did you wake up? A: 3:00 a. 28 May 2004.? 276 Page A: I was near the place. Jr. sir. where were you. Q: You said you were attending a wake.

Q: What is the complete name of this Mang Loloy? A: I don’t know. Q: Who is this friend you are referring to? A: Buboy. what happened next? A: He also took a fancy to my friend. what happened next? A: Mang Loloy stood up and walked away and Charlie Villa followed him and boxed him and he fell to the ground.‛ Q: What was the reaction of Charlie Villa if any? A: Charlie said. . ‚anong pakialam mo. Jr. 550. Q: While Charlie Villa was putting biscuit on the mouth of Buboy while sleeping. what was Buboy doing then? A: He was sleeping. Q: How far was Charlie Villa from Mang Loloy when he answered that way? A: About a meter away. sir.‛ Q: When you woke up when you were boxed by Charlie Villa. in the face. Q: Then what happened next? A: Mang Loloy went to Charlie Villa and said. Q: What is his full name? A: I don’t know. Q: Did you see what part of the body of Mang Loloy was boxed by Charlie? A: On his nape. MARCH 28. Q: By the way. Villa. what happened? Q: Up to now you do not know the name of this Mang Loloy? A: Yes.‛ 493 VOL. how old is this Buboy? A: Still young. Q: When Charlie Villa was putting biscuit in the mouth of this Buboy.32 277 Page A: Mang Loloy tried to prevent him. ‚Huwag mong pagtripan ang batang natutulog.A: ‚Pinag-tripan po ako. Q: In what way did Charlie Villa took a fancy to your friend? A: He fed him with biscuit. Jr. Q: How far away was Buboy when you saw this? A: About four meters away. we just call him Buboy. 2008 493 People vs. Q: After Charlie Villa told Mang Loloy to mind his own business.

278 32 TSN dated 23 March 1999. sir. pp. what happened next? A: Charlie Villa arrived and he fed a child with biscuit and he was prevented by my father. Jr. Q: After he drank coffee. what happened next? A: Charlie Villa said. what was the child doing prior to the time he was fed biscuit? A: He was sleeping. ‚huwag mo akong pakialaman. Q: That child which Charlie Villa fed biscuit. x x x x Q: Can you tell the Court why you were there in that area on that particular date and time? A: Because there was a wake at the house nearby.Witness wearing Orly a testified brass that when appellant by boxed a the victim. 3-6. Q: After Charlie Villa fed the child who was sleeping with biscuit. Q: After your father told that to Charlie Villa. corroborated what Marlon stated: Q: Where were you on the date the incident happened? A: I was at the other street corner. I just could not get near them immediately because Charlie Villa immediately rode on a jeep.‛ Q: After Charlie Villa responded by saying. Q: July 18? A: Yes. Q: When did this incident happen? A: On the night of the 18th at past 2:00 in the morning. 494 Page Q: So. ‚huwag mo akong was accosted by my father not to disturb the child who is knuckle wrapped handkerchief. he was leaving the wake? . _______________ pakialaman. Villa. what was he doing prior to the incident wherein he was punched by accused Charlie Villa? A: He was drinking coffee at the wake. what about your father Rodolfo Arevalo. he He was also 494 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. x x x x Q: You said there was a wake that time near your house. what happened next? A: He sleeping.‛ what happened next? A: My father left. Q: To what direction did your father go when he left? A: To the direction of our house.

Q: Did you see the metal knuckle? A: Yes. what did you see Charlie Villa do? A: He crossed the street and suddenly rode a jeep. sir. Jr. Q: After your father fell down face first. happened next? A: That was the time when I saw that he punched my father. 1997 at around 3:00 o’clock in the morning? A: Yes. where was he hit in those three times? A: All in his nape. Q: After your father was hit in the nape by the several punches made by Charlie Villa. 2008 495 279 Page People vs. Q: After Charlie followed your father when he left the wake. because it is bulging. did you notice at the hand of Charlie Villa which he used in punching your father? A: His fist was wrapped with a handkerchief that covered the metal knuckle. sir. sir. if anything. Q: What hand did Charlie Villa use in punching your father? A: His right fist. Q: Was your father hit when he was punched by Charlie Villa? A: Yes. what Q: Where was he hit? A: On his nape. . Q: And in those three to five times that Charlie Villa punched your father. was your father hit? A: Yes. Q: What. Q: How did he fall down? A: Face first.A: Yes.33 Roger narrated a similar story. what happened next? A: He fell down unconscious. sir. MARCH 28. x x x x 495 VOL. Villa. 550. Q: In that three to five times that Charlie Villa hit your father. Q: How many times did Charlie Villa hit your father? A: About three to five times. sir. Q: When your father left the wake. what happened next? A: Charlie followed him. thus: Q: Do you recall where you were on July 20.

that’s why we saw him. sir. where did Rodolfo Arevalo go after you saw him for the x x x x Q: Do you know the reason why Rodolfo Arevalo was lying on the ground? A: Yes. sir. sir. Q: How did you see him lying on the ground? A: Because when a vehicle passed by the light of the vehicle fell on the body of this Rodolfo Arevalo. Jr. 4-9. Q: What was the reason? A: He was punched by using metal knuckle on his nape. did you come to see the person of Rodolfo Arevalo on 20 July 1997 at that place? A: Yes. sir. Q: Why did you know that he was not able to go home? A: Because we saw him [fell] down on the ground at the store of Aling Helen. Q: How far was the place you saw him lying down on the ground from the place where the wake was being held? A: Five (5) meters. sir. Villa. it is readily clear that the first requisite of self-defense is wanting. sir. The unlawful aggression did not originate from the victim but period of 1/2 hour at that wake? A: He went home. Q: Was he able to go home? A: No. 33 TSN. Q: How did you know that he was going home? Page 280 . sir. and he said he will go home. _______________ A: He said goodbye.. 496 496 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs.Q: Where were you on that date and on that particular time? A: I was attending a wake. x x x x Q: Now. sir. Q: Who was this person who punched him who used metal knuckle? A: Charlie Villa. Q: Did you see him going home? A: Yes. pp. 21 January 1999. Jr. x x x x Q: Now.34 From the testimonies of the prosecution witnesses.

His act of fleeing from the scene of the crime instead of reporting the incident to the police authorities are circumstances highly indicative of guilt and negate his claim of self-defense. It is also inconceivable how he could have hit the victim at the back of the latter’s head when. With the brass knuckle around his right fist. appellant immediately went after the victim as the latter was leaving. Jr. The autopsy report. 497 VOL. 5-11. _______________ reprimanded him by telling him not to make fun of the sleeping child. With this evidence adduced by the prosecution. Macuha. 550. The autopsy report revealed Page highly suspect. he was already holding a club. Feeling responsible for it. it defies logic why he had to deliver several blows on the head of the . the victim walked on his way home. indeed. MARCH 28. why should appellant wear a brass knuckle if he had no intention to kill the victim? Another troubling account of the defense is the conflicting version of 34 TSN. Nurturing that ill feeling._______________ that the victim sustained four injuries. 498 498 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. He was the aggressor.35 The version of the defense detailing the manner in which he supposedly 35 People v. Appellant. appellant realized what he had done. He claims that he boxed the victim on his nape only once. bared that it was the victim who first left the wake and went home. 267. Appellant’s behavior right after the incident runs contrary to his avowed innocence. appellant poured his anger towards the victim by punching the latter’s nape until he fell unconscious. Not suspecting that the appellant harbored rancor. Furthermore. 2008 497 People vs. Jr. When he came to his senses. Witness Randy Jose Gonzales declared it was the appellant who first left the wake and was subsequently chased by the victim with a dos por dos. 10 August 1999. belies appellant’s assertion. pp. appellant’s posture can hardly succeed. Villa. 23 (1999). the defense interposed by the appellant was merely an afterthought. 369 Phil. The nature and number of injuries likewise make appellant’s defense 281 defended himself from the assault of the victim is hard to believe. 257. If appellant punched the victim just to defend himself. When the victim returned. he fled. These diverging statements of the defense tend to support the RTC opinion that. on the other hand. three of which were at the head near the nape and one at the trunk. and without warning. 310 SCRA 14. Villa. as he claimed. thereby exposing his back to the attack of the appellant. from the appellant himself. Appellant was offended when the victim both defense witnesses. however. they were facing each other and appellant was just defending himself.

victim. brass the victim was walking him to when fall. since the onslaught was from behind. as the attack was swift and he was not in the position to repel the same. 433 SCRA 562. Penal the to mitigating crime. MARCH 28. P50.000. Article for murder perpetua of Article attended Considering aggravating circumstances reclusion commission proper perpetua pursuant 36 People v. can manner Two be of person methods prosecution established that the victim was punched from behind while on his way home. one blow from the appellant 499 People vs. It has been held in this regard that the location and presence of several injuries on the body of the victim is physical evidence that eloquently refutes appellant’s allegations of selfdefense. Unwary that appellant had taken badly his piece of advice. since the victim thought he was just giving a constructive advice. the latter did not have the slightest idea that he was about to be attacked by the former.00 as temperate damages. 578. 2008 _______________ . The award of moral damages does not require allegation and proof of the emotional suffering of the heirs. who has. It that is an to or aggravating murder. In the instant case. 7 July 2004.39 Civil indemnity 282 499 Page VOL. But appellant could not contain his fury for being humiliated by the victim. The essence of treachery is a deliberate and sudden attack that renders the victim unable and unprepared to defend himself by reason of the suddenness circumstance essential appreciated: and that (1) severity qualifies are the of the the killing in of attack.37 of the order means. 37 People v. the would have been sufficient to repel the alleged attack coming from the victim. since the emotional wounds from the vicious killing of the victim cannot be denied. Jr. methods or manner of execution. and (2) deliberate or conscious choice of means. 139456. In order to gratify himself he had to box the victim until the latter became unconscious. Also affirmed upon is the the ruling appellant under to death. If indeed the victim was drunk. _______________ imposing penalty reclusion imposition the penalty reclusion Revised neither of perpetua. thus. the Court of Appeals correctly awarded to the heirs of the victim the amount of P50. 550.00 as civil indemnity. The prosecution sufficiently proved treachery.000.38 As to the award of damages. No heated argument or a physical contest had occurred prior to the punching incident. no opportunity for self-defense or retaliation.00 as moral damages and P25. While there may have been an exchange of words between the appellant and the victim prior to the killing.R. Villa. Code elements required treachery employment execution that would ensure the offender’s safety from any retaliatory act on the part of the offended party. Saragina. the appellant could behind not suddenly put up a punched him three times at the back of his head with the use of a knuckle. paragraph 2 of the Revised Penal Code. G. Abatayo. No. of the 248 the is RTC of and of the that the Court of Appeals The is nor the 63. Moreover. 332 SCRA 219 (2000).000. treachery must be alleged in the information and proved during the trial. causing The victim defense.36 The RTC appreciated the presence of treachery qualifying the killing of Rodolfo to murder.

MARCH 28. no receipts were presented. either qualifying or generic. G.000.00 as exemplary damages is justified under Article 2230 of the New Civil Code.000. since the qualifying circumstance of treachery was proven by the prosecution.00 in favor of the heirs of the victim is in order.000. P50. 24 January 2006. 663. 627. 171017. 248. Villa. in addition to these damages.43 This kind of damage is intended to serve as a deterrent to serious wrongdoings and as a vindication of . 479 SCRA 610.41 However. 347 expenses. 550.000. 42 People v.00. Jr. 85 (2003). 98. Aguila. Guillermo.R.000. Malejana. the Decision of the Court of Appeals dated 13 March 2007 convicting appellant Charlie Villa. is mandatory and granted to the heirs of the victim without need of proof other than the commission of the crime.00 as temperate damages. 145002. 283 Page committed with an aggravating circumstance.undue sufferings and wanton invasion of the rights of an injured. 41 Id. 510 SCRA 642. 6 December 2006. the amount of P25. Jr. 274. the RTC award of civil indemnity ex delicto in the amount of P50. to damages that. 43 Id. 2008 501 People vs. Jr. of murder and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua is hereby AFFIRMED with MODIFICATIONS with _______________ 500 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. evidence of Temperate presume documentary of the actual damages was presented in the trial because it is reasonable to death family victim incurred expenses for the wake and funeral.42 When a crime is VOL. 39 People v. Caraig. 78. The award of temperate damages. Villa. Based on current jurisprudence.00 as moral damages. respect to the award of damages. 501 v.000. an award of P25.00 as exemplary damages and another P25. exemplary damages should also be awarded to the heirs of the victim.44 WHEREFORE. G. Appellant is ordered to indemnify the heirs of Rodolfo Arevalo the amount of P50. the heirs of the where the no victim is justified.00 as civil indemnity. 500 a punishment for those guilty of outrageous conduct.R. or as 38 People v. when are awarded occurs. No. 400 SCRA 67. 44 Id.40 Although in the prosecution presented evidence that the heirs incurred 40 People (2004). No. 448 Phil. Costs against appellant. P25. 420 SCRA 326. 465 Phil.000.

550 SCRA 480(2008)] Page 284 .—Self-defense is not credible in the face of the flight of the (Actg.** Nachura and Reyes. 461 SCRA 248 [2005]) Our based laws on on self-defense we should are supposed to approximate impulses person’s in the the natural face when of he human responses to danger..SO ORDERED. Tinga. Jr. People. Judgment affirmed with modifications. (Sullon vs. 465 SCRA 267 [2005]) ——o0o—— _______________ [People vs. Austria-Martinez concur. JJ. (Soplente vs. Notes. People. Villa.. accused from the crime scene and his failure to inform the authorities about the incident. and not serve as our inconvenient textbook which acclimatize to our peril—it would be wrong to compel the accused to have discerned the appropriate calibrated response another kicking himself was staring at the evil eye of danger. Chairperson).

when amply supported by evidence on record and affirmed by the appellate court. corporate himself fiction from of the justify ASJ wrong. Corp. 158086. February 14. Appeals. Corporation Law. was claims used of by and San Juan a to insulate public legitimate respondents. is in a better position to pass judgment on their credibility. While there are exceptional circumstances when these findings may be set aside. 285 Certiorari.R.— Although no hard and fast rule can be accurately laid down under which the juridical personality of a corporate entity may be disregarded. No. corporation’s subsidiary liability for damages. SPS. (5) There is no bona fide intention to treat ASJ Corp. Evangelista G. We need not assess and evaluate the evidence all over again where the findings of both courts on these matters coincide. as well established in Page . These findings. being purely one of fact. (3) ASJ Corp. only errors of law are reviewable by this Court in a petition for review to under Rule observe 45.our jurisprudence. are binding upon this Court and will not be disturbed on appeal. (4) San Juan complete control of the corporation. The trial court. Only errors of law are * SECOND DIVISION. defend crime. Actions. none of them is present in this case.. factual findings of the trial court. as a different entity from San Juan. the having demeanor had of the the opportunity personally and analyze witnesses while testifying. More importantly. had no the other properties it is or assets.—Petitioners seek to establish a set of facts contrary to the factual findings of the trial and appellate courts. respondents. except for is the in hatchery plant and lot where located. evade defeat convenience. the following probative factors of identity justify the application of the doctrine of piercing the veil of corporate fiction in this case: (1) San Juan and his wife own the bulk of shares of ASJ Corp. 301 reviewable by the Supreme Court in a petition for review under Rule 45. However. should be respected. Piercing the Veil of Corporate Fiction. Factors. 2008.* ASJ CORPORATION and ANTONIO SAN JUAN. petitioners. Pleadings and Practice. (2) The lot where the hatchery plant is located is owned by the San Juan spouses. vs. and (6) The 300 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED ASJ Corporation vs. _______________ EFREN & MAURA EVANGELISTA.

while and petitioners had of the right to withhold as aptly delivery. Same. generally of a monetary character.—It simultaneous who fulfillment of the other—from the moment one of the parties fulfills his 286 obligation. Evangelista Obligations and Contracts. temperate damages although are the recoverable. More so. On several setting reports. Under Article 19 of the Civil Code. of respondents’ accounts were as a condition to fully However. consequently giving rise to petitioners’ right of retention. petitioners opted to demand precedent the to full the settlement delivery. there was no valid application of payment in this case. such the performance delay by one other conditioned begins.—San Juan’s subsequent acts of threatening respondents should not remain among those treated with impunity. respondents cannot substitute or apply as their payment the value of the chicks and by-products they expect to derive because it is necessary that all the debts be for the same kind.VOL. When respondents’ accounts accumulated because of their successive failure to pay on several setting reports. he has no right to engage in high-handed and oppressive acts. Reciprocal obligations are those which arise from the same cause. Under Article 1248 of the Civil Code. are binding and conclusive and will not be disturbed on appeal. Respondents’ offer to partially satisfy their accounts is not enough to extinguish their obligation. Evangelista which is exercised in bad faith. This case is clearly one among the species of non-performance of a reciprocal obligation. Needless to say. suffered some pecuniary loss anchored on petitioners’ abuse of rights. and (c) for the sole intent of prejudicing or injuring the another. that Reciprocal obligations of the are is those which arise upon was from the the same found by the two courts below. Under Article 1248 of the Civil Code. when adopted and confirmed by the appellate court. wherein each Page . unless there is an express stipulation to that effect. delay by the other party begins. unless there is an express stipulation to that effect. wherein each party is a debtor and a creditor of the other. exact amount of actual damages cannot be cause. but delivery/pick-up tolerated party is a debtor and a creditor of the other. Here. the creditor to the cannot be compelled the of chicks to accept partial payments from the debtor. settle their accounts.—Since it was established that respondents ascertained. We need not weigh the corresponding pieces of evidence all over again because factual findings of the trial court. 2008 301 ASJ Corporation vs. Same. made delays their payments. Abuse of Rights. Where it was established that a person suffered some pecuniary loss anchored on another person’s abuse of rights. From the moment one of the parties fulfills his obligation. Application of Payment. party respondents violated the very essence of reciprocity in contracts. the creditor cannot be compelled to accept partial payments from the debtor. an act constitutes an abuse of right if the following elements are present: (a) the existence of a legal right or duty. petitioners such delay. 545. Damages. respondents unable 302 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED ASJ Corporation vs.—Petitioners’ corresponds respondents to obligation three dates: on deliver date and the by-products hatching. Even if a party has the right to do something. FEBRUARY 14. Elements. (b) 302 date and the date of respondents’ payment. high-handed oppressive acts petitioners. had no legal leg to stand on. such that the performance of one is conditioned upon the simultaneous fulfillment of the other. although the exact amount of actual damages cannot be ascertained.

are expected to derive. society. In arriving at a reasonable level of temperate damages of P408. CV No. 1993. 109 to 113. are in a The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. J. 2008 303 Bulacan in and and under the selling Nueva the their availed name and style of (chicks) hatchery of and R. Evangelista PETITION for review on certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals. Same. not to injure others and to give everyone his due. attorney’s fees are also proper. non alterum laedere et jus suum cuique tribuere (To live virtuously. dated after July 8. 109 and 110. are as follows: Respondents. To live virtuously. incubation hatching respondents services corporation duly registered in the name of San Juan and his family. (d) 68. on the average. . or the total number of broiler eggs under Setting Report Nos.10.3 The pertinent facts. Since exemplary damages are awarded. As enshrined in civil law jurisprudence: Honeste vivere. it Where the a person’s award of conduct moral flouts and the norms of civil For review on certiorari is the Decision1 dated April 30..) and Antonio San Juan solidarily liable to respondents Efren and Maura Evangelista for the unjustified retention of the chicks and egg by-products covered by Setting Report Nos. QUISUMBING. 1996 the of the of Regional piercing Trial the Court veil of (RTC) of Malolos. which is equivalent to the value of the chicks and by-products. held petitioners ASJ Corporation (ASJ Corp. which respondents. respectively.: justifies exemplary damages—as enshrined in civil law jurisprudence: Honeste vivere. The Court of applying doctrine corporate fiction.20. hatching of these hatchlings the by-products4 ASJ Corp. or the then unit market price of the chicks and by-products.temperate damages are recoverable. 303 large-scale Ecija. as found by the RTC and the Court of Appeals. VOL. and (e) P14. 108 to 113. FEBRUARY 14. which are the pick-up dates for Setting Report Nos. representing the average rates of conversion of broiler eggs into hatched chicks and egg by-products as tabulated by the trial court based on available statistical data which was unrebutted by petitioners.—We agree that petitioners’ conduct flouts the norms of civil society and justifies the award of moral and exemplary damages. the rates of (b) 41% and (c) 17%. Bulacan. 2003 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.M. not to injure others and to give everyone his due). eggs.G. which had affirmed the Decision2 Appeals. 56082.784 eggs. this Court was guided by the following factors: (a) award of temperate damages will cover only Setting Report Nos. Ferry Law Offices for petitioner. E. broiler egg of and Sy Chicks. engaged them. 545. 109 to 113 since the threats started only on February 10 and 11. Venustiano S. business For of the buying eggs. 745-M-93.852. Branch 9 in Civil Case No. Roxas & Associates Law Office for respondents. _______________ 287 Page ASJ Corporation vs.00 and (f) P1. Same.R. non alterum laedere et jus suum cuique tribuere.

1993. Penned by Judge D. 1993 1/20/1993 SR 109 21. De Los Santos and Regalado E. Initially.. through a lighting system. 1993 1/22/1993 SR 110 7. respondents’ delays on their payments were tolerated by San Juan. Such as ‚balut.213 eggs February 12. 3 Id.3[50]5 eggs. of eggs delivered Date hatched/ Pick-up date 1/13/1993 SR 108 304 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED ASJ Corporation vs. 28-42.. detailed as follows:6 . 64-66. as there may be. 79-97. out of keeping 32. Masadao. From January 13 to February 3. which is also the date respondents would pick-up the chicks and by-products. Roy A. 30. who just carried over the balance. and the date of hatching.485 eggs February 10. 1993 1/28/1993 SR 111 to 14. at pp.495 eggs 288 goodwill with respondents. with Associate Justices Eliezer R. Brawner. But as their business went along. Jr. Penned by Associate Justice Romeo A. whether successfully hatched or not. Each delivery was reflected in a ‚Setting Report‛ indicating the following: the number of eggs delivered.566 eggs February 3. pp. the date of setting or the date the eggs were delivered and laid out in the incubators. 4 Id. Maambong concurring. at pp. Evangelista Sometime in 1991. respondents had delivered Page San Juan a total of 101. respondents delivered to petitioners various quantities of eggs at an agreed service fee of 80 centavos per egg. 2 Id. the date of candling or the date the eggs. the service fees were paid upon release of the eggs and by-products to respondents. at p. into the next delivery.‛ 304 Date Set SR Number No.1 Rollo.‛ ‚penoy‛ and ‚exploders.. were inspected and determined if viable or capable of being hatched into chicks.

pp. San P15.350 eggs settlement of respondents’ accounts before releasing the chicks and byOn February 3. On February 10.00. 1993 1/30/1993 SR 112 15. 109. respondent Maura. but San Juan again refused to release the same unless respondents fully settle their accounts. to pick up the chicks and by-products covered by Setting Report No.242 in other parts of the Records. 1993.000. 6 Rollo.24[5]7 eggs February 24. 108.245 eggs covered by Setting Report No.347 in other parts of the Records. 64-66. insisted 101. Maura promised to settle their accounts only upon Juan detain disliked them the at idea the and hatchery proper accounting by San Juan. Fearing San Juan’s Page threats. 90. respondents never went back to the hatchery. San to if impound they their should vehicle come and back compound threatened unprepared to fully settle their accounts with him. respondents directed their errand boy. She explained that she was unable to pay their balance Juan because accepted she the was hospitalized but for an undisclosed on the full ailment. 1993. 545. with her son Anselmo. Nevertheless. On February 11. respondent Efren went to the hatchery to pick up the chicks and by-products covered by Setting Report No.February 18. 1993.000. In the afternoon of the same day. San Juan was firm in his refusal and reiterated his threats on respondents. FEBRUARY 14. tendered P15. Evangelista setting reports starting from Setting Report No. Efren returned to the hatchery to pick up the chicks and by-products covered by Setting Report No.000. 7 10. 113 and P15. . San Juan accepted from Efren 10.346 eggs February 20. 1993 2/3/1993 SR 113 10. Allan 289 5 101. but San Juan refused to release the same due to respondents’ failure to settle accrued service fees on several _______________ products. and tried to claim the chicks and by-products. Believing firmly that the total value of the eggs delivered was more than sufficient to cover the outstanding balance. 2008 305 ASJ Corporation vs. 81. 110 and also to ascertain if San Juan was still willing to settle amicably their differences. 1993 TOTAL 305 VOL.008 in cash as partial payment for the accrued service fees.009 to San Juan. Blanco. Unfortunately.

00 as attorney’s fees.. but to no avail. FEBRUARY 14. 108 to 113. 14 Id.. 88-92. 1996. 93-94.00 as moral damages. 92-93..‛14 Both parties appealed to the Court of Appeals.00 as actual damages for the cost of other while 306 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED ASJ Corporation vs. 107. at pp. entire decision.727.80 as actual damages. 13 Id. plus the costs of suit. Evangelista retention of the chicks and by-products covered by Setting Report Nos.000. 87-88.687. 108 to the value of the hatched legal chicks and by-products which the plaintiffs on the average expected to derive Setting from 113.644. plus 290 interests and costs of suit. 11 Id..000. _______________ disregarded the corporate fiction of ASJ Corp. 2008 307 ASJ Corporation vs. Evangelista Page applicable thereon. at pp. respondents owed petitioners (3) the P102.80.11 and chicks by-products on unjustified The accompanied threats and intimidations respondents. P50. at pp.. 545. jointly and severally. Respondents prayed for an additional award of P76.80.000. 12 Id. at pp.52 reversal of as the unrealized trial court’s profits. laws/jurisprudence based on the evidence on is record hereby and the VOL.00 as attorney’s fees. with interest thereon the date of this judgment until the same shall authorities.336. the RTC ruled in favor of respondents and made the following findings: (1) as of Setting Report No. 306 SO ORDERED. p.The parties tried to settle amicably their differences before police ordering the defendants to pay. 108-113.13 and held it and San Juan solidarily liable to respondents for P529. 8 Rollo. inclusive. P100. 307 unreturned petitioners by-products prayed for and the P1.139. 96-97. unto the plaintiffs the amounts under of P529.12 10 Id. 67. judgment rendered . P100. respondents filed with the RTC an action for damages based on petitioners’ _______________ have been fully paid. at pp.00 as moral damages and P50.644.. The decretal portion of the decision reads: ‚WHEREFORE.10 retention by of the (2) petitioners and withheld the was release of the and RTC chicks and by-products covered by Setting Report Nos. Reports representing Nos. Thus.000. 9 Id. On July 8.

PETITIONERS WITHHELD/OR FAILED TO RELEASE THE CHICKS AND BYPRODUCTS COVERED BY SETTING REPORT NOS. the instant petition. V. II. HONORABLE ERRED IN COURT NOT OF APPEALS. the Decision appealed from is hereby AFFIRMED. . 2003. with the slight modification that exemplary damages in the amount of P10. SO ORDERED. applying the doctrine of piercing the veil of corporate fiction. 111. AND CONSEQUENTLY HOLDING PETITIONERS JOINTLY SEVERALLY LIABLE RESPONDENTS THE SUM OF P529. at pp. 41-42.00 in favor of respondents.644. assigning the following errors: I. Costs against defendants. 291 HEARSAY ITS RELEASE TESTIMONY THAT CHICKS THE OF MAURA EVANGELISTA SUPPORTIVE FAILED OF TO FINDINGS PETITIONERS AND WITHHELD/OR BYPRODUCTS COVERED BY SETTING Page REPORT NOS. the Court of Appeals denied both appeals for lack of merit and affirmed the trial court’s decision. with the slight modification of including an award of exemplary damages of P10. DID COURT QUO. THE QUO. The fallo of the Court of Appeals’ decision reads: ‚WHEREFORE. THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS ERRED IN HOLDING. 108 AND 109. 308 308 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED ASJ Corporation vs. 108 AND 109. AS DID THE THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS ERRED IN ADMITTING THE COURT A QUO.. III.000. 110.000.[80]. The Court of Appeals. Evangelista THE HONORABLE AS COURT THE OF APPEALS A GRIEVOUSLY THAT ERRED IN PRODUCTS AND 113.00 are awarded to plaintiffs. THAT AND THE PIERCING OF THE VEIL TO OF PAY CORPORATE ENTITY IS JUSTIFIED.‛15 Hence.On April 30. THAT AS DID THE COURT FAILED A TO FINDING RESPONDENTS RETURN TO THE PLANT TO GET THE CHICKS AND BY _______________ 15 Id. IV. and San Juan as one entity. 112 HOLDING. considered ASJ Corp. COVERED BY SETTING REPORT NOS. after finding that there was no bona fide intention to treat the corporation as separate and distinct from San Juan and his wife Iluminada. in view of the foregoing.

497. 18 People v. February 15. 2005. Galam.17 The trial court.80 accrued service fees for Setting Report Nos. No. (c) it did not find that it was respondents who failed to return to the hatchery to pick up the chicks and by-products covered by Setting Report Nos. and (d) it pierced San the Juan veil as of corporate one entity? fiction Second. Heirs of Primitivo Hernaez. when amply supported by evidence on record and affirmed by the appellate court. only errors of law are reviewable by this Court in a petition for review under Rule THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS ERRED IN NOT AWARDING PETITIONERS’ COUNTERCLAIM. following facts were uncontroverted: (1) As of Setting Report No.16 Plainly.21 (2) Petitioners.336. 12-13. there are two sets of issues that the petitioners have raised. are binding upon this Court and will not be disturbed on appeal.22 did not release the chicks and byproducts cov_______________ petitioners solidarily liable to respondents for the payment of P529. 325 SCRA 16 Id. ATTORNEY’S FEES. G. none of them is present in this case. 114740. FEBRUARY 14. 110 to 113. The first set is factual. 466 SCRA 120. is in a better position to pass judgment on their credibility. 128-129. based on San Juan’s own admission. (b) it admitted the testimony of Maura. 489. No. 2008 309 ASJ Corporation vs. Petitioners seek to establish a set of facts contrary to the factual findings of the trial and appellate _______________ 17 Estate of Salvador Serra Serra v. Based on the records. as well established in our jurisprudence. Evangelista courts. 545. 2000. as the DAMAGES.309 THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS ERRED IN HOLDING THAT PETITIONERS ART. 19 OF AWARDING HAVE THE MORAL VIOLATED NEW CIVIL THE PRINCIPLES AND EXEMPLARY ENUNCIATED DAMAGES IN IN AND CODE CONSEQUENTLY VOL. 107. 90 to 107.. 108 and 109. the issues submitted for resolution are: First. at pp.644. as well to as the parties’ for own admissions. factual findings of the trial court. to and hold Antonio was proper 45.R. Page 292 . VI.R. August 9. respondents were indebted petitioners P102.19 While there are exceptional circumstances20 when these findings may be set aside.80 and other damages? In our view. having had the opportunity to personally observe and analyze the demeanor of the witnesses while testifying. However.18 More importantly. 142913. and held it ASJ Corp. did the Court of Appeals err when (a) it ruled that petitioners withheld or failed to release the chicks and by-products covered by Setting Report Nos. G.

what can you say to that? x x x x WITNESS A: That is true. No. petitioners contend that the retention was justified and did not constitute an abuse of rights since it was respondents who failed to comply with their obligation. fact. They further state that despite their offer to partially satisfy the accrued service fees. (3) ASJ Corp. except for the hatchery plant and the lot where it is located.. 20 Union Refinery Corporation v. On the second set of issues.26 evidence should all justify be wrong. defeat public convenience. ATTY. G. respected. pp. had no other properties or assets. sir. although no hard and fast rule can be accurately laid down under which the the juridical following personality probative of a corporate of entity may be the disregarded. No.R. 310 matters coincide. ered by Setting Report Nos. and (6) The corporate fiction of ASJ Corp.19 MOF Company. 382 SCRA 248. 2002. Respondents. aver that all the elements on abuse of rights were present.R. 22-23. (5) There is no bona fide intention to treat ASJ Corp. (2) The lot where the hatchery plant is located is owned by the San Juan spouses. defend We crime. being purely one of not assess of both and over again where the findings courts these corresponding to Setting Report Nos. 110 to 113. 471 SCRA 613. Inc. G. as a different entity from San Juan. Page .23 Furthermore. 2005.. v. need and evade a corporation’s evaluate on the subsidiary liability for damages. according to the plaintiff[. 252. May 9. 108 up to 113 were not released by your plant because your company refused to release them because of the fact that no payment was made. August 16. 195-196.] the chicks and spoiled eggs application of the doctrine of piercing the veil of corporate fiction24 in this case: (1) San Juan and his wife own the bulk of shares of ASJ Corp. 21 Rollo. 310 _______________ 293 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED ASJ Corporation vs. Sr. FERRY x x x x Q: Now.25 These findings. (4) San Juan is in complete control of the corporation. 89-91. and (3) Due to San Juan’s threats. 618-619. factors identity justify September 30. 1995. was used by San Juan to insulate himself from the legitimate claims of respondents. Enriquez. Evangelista 23 Rollo. 108 and 109 for failure of respondents to fully settle their previous accounts. Tolentino. pp. pp. for their part. 22 TSN. See Tabulation of Payments and Balances. respondents never returned to the hatchery to pick up those covered by Setting Report Nos. 155653. 149280.

petitioners still chose to withhold the delivery. generally of a monetary character. Furthermore. wherein each party is a debtor and Page . is simple enough. G. 494 SCRA 493. FEBRUARY 14. 2008 311 ASJ Corporation vs. When respondents’ accounts accumulated because of their successive failure to pay on several setting reports. 1996. there was no valid application of payment in this case. Under Article 124827 of the Civil Code. Dyne-Sem Electronics Corporation. To begin with.Unless there is an express stipulation to that effect. National Labor Relations precedent to the delivery. the creditor cannot be compelled to accept partial payments from the debtor. x x x x 312 312 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED ASJ Corporation vs. 2006. respondents cannot substitute or apply as their payment the value of the chicks and byproducts they expect to derive because it is necessary that all VOL. retention. v. petitioners such delay. consequently giving rise to petitioners’ right of This species nonperformance of a reciprocal obligation. May 29. but the delivery/pick-up tolerated Needless to say. 149237. Evangelista and the fact that the value of the chicks and by-products was more than sufficient to cover their unpaid obligations.G. Respondents’ offer to partially satisfy their accounts is not enough to extinguish their obligation. 1248. in our considered view. it was case respondents is clearly who one violated among the the very essence of of 294 date and the date of respondents’ payment. July 11. The crux of the controversy. pp. 311 settle their accounts. matter. Inc.R. Evangelista the debts be for the same kind. the creditor cannot be compelled partially to receive the prestations in which the obligation consists. Was petitioners’ retention of the chicks and byproducts on account of respondents’ While the failure trial and act of to pay the corresponding had chicks the and service fees unjustified? on the appellate withholding courts the same decisions by-products is _______________ 27 ART. 26 China Banking Corporation v. petitioners opted to demand the full settlement of respondents’ accounts as a condition reciprocity in contracts. Worth stressing. respondents made delays their payments. More so. 158. The retention had legal basis. No. petitioners’ obligation to deliver the chicks and by-products corresponds to three dates: on the date of hatching.R. Neither may the debtor be required to make partial payments. 499. 108734. suffice it to say that a modification is proper. respondents were unable to fully Commission. However. 257 SCRA 149.24 See Concept Builders. Reciprocal obligations are those which arise from the same cause. On several setting reports. 34-37. petitioners’ entirely different from petitioners’ unjustifiable acts of threatening respondents. 25 See Rollo. 545. No. unless there is an express stipulation to that effect. the threats had none.

382. Every person must.R. which are the pickup dates for Setting Report Nos. while petitioners had the right to withhold delivery. (b) which is exercised in bad faith. which 28 Cortes v..80. 2005.10.32 Here. of Eggs Delivered X P0. such that the performance of one is conditioned upon the simultaneous fulfillment of the other. delay by the other party begins. 2008 313 ASJ Corporation vs.784 eggs. 30 Service Fees for Setting Report Nos. FEBRUARY 14. G. 107. 29 CIVIL CODE. computed as follows: From respondents’ outstanding balance of P102. act with justice. as aptly found by the two courts below. are expected Report Nos. July 12. 126083. In arriving at a reasonable level of temperate damages of P408. Jr.80 per egg.00 and (f) _______________ 295 the performance of his duties. the high-handed and oppressive acts of petitioners.852.34 or the total number of broiler eggs under Setting Report Nos. 108-113 = Total No. are binding and conclusive and will not be disturbed on appeal. which is equivalent to the value of the products. 1169. Pacilan. No.29 Since respondents they are are guilty liable of to delay pay in the performance actual of their of VOL.0030 for Setting Report Nos. Page . temperate damages are recoverable. we add the corresponding services fees of P81. July 29. had no legal leg to stand on.80 per egg. the rates of (b) 41% and court (c) 17%.33 Since it was established that respondents suffered some pecuniary loss anchored on petitioners’ abuse of rights. 313 32 Far East Bank and Trust Company v.28 From the moment one of the parties fulfills his obligation. since the the average. and (c) for the sole intent of prejudicing or injuring _______________ this Court was guided by the following factors: (a) award of temperate cover threats started only on February 10 and 11. give everyone his due. 109 and 110. on only Setting chicks and byto derive.416. Art. 576. when adopted and confirmed by the appellate court. 465 SCRA 372.336. Court of Appeals. Evangelista another.R. G. 494 SCRA 570. 157314. 109 to 113. representing the average based on available statistical rates of conversion which was of broiler by eggs into hatched chicks and egg by-products as tabulated by the trial data unrebutted petitioners. Nonetheless. San should not remain among those treated with impunity. 31 ART. 109 to 113 obligations. petitioners damages P183. P81. last paragraph. 2006.350 eggs X P0. (d) 68. 545. as of Setting Report No. and (e) P14. 1993.00 = 101. an act constitutes an abuse of right if the following elements are present: (a) the existence of a legal right or duty. Under Article 1931 of the Civil Code. No. 19.a creditor of the other.80. We need not weigh Juan’s subsequent acts of threatening respondents the corresponding pieces of evidence all over again because factual findings of the trial court.080. and observe honesty and good faith. 108 to 113 which had remain unpaid.080. although the exact amount of actual damages cannot be ascertained. in the exercise of his rights and in damages will respondents.

20.820.346 eggs SR No. we agree that petitioners’ conduct flouts the norms of civil society and justifies the award of moral and exemplary damages. 113 10.213 eggs SR No.784 eggs 314 ASJ Corporation vs. Article 2208 of the Civil Code provides that: Page .20) = P 14. As enshrined in civil law jurisprudence: Honeste vivere. 128. 112 15.495 eggs SR No.10 At bottom. the temperate damages of P408.784 eggs X P14) = P394. 111 4.245 eggs TOTAL 68. non alterum laedere et jus suum cuique tribuere. of eggs delivered SR No.485 eggs SR No.16 17% X (68. supra note 17.33 Estate of Salvador Serra Serra v. respectively. at p. 296 314 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED attorney’s fees are also proper. To live virtuously. No. Evangelista P1. 110 7. or the then unit market price of the chicks and byproducts.852.94 [P394.820.031.784 eggs X P1. 109 21.94] = P408. 34 Setting Report No.16 + P14.35 Since exemplary damages are awarded. Heirs of Primitivo Hernaez.10 is computed as follows: [b X (d X e) + c X (d X f)] = Temperate Damages 41% X (68.852. not to injure others and to give everyone his due. Thus.031.

80 in favor of respondents Manila Garden vs. Inc. (Nikko Hotel VOL. exemplary damages and attorney’s fees of P100.. CV No. x x x x‛ WHEREFORE. No. P10. attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation. JJ. is even to depart the from act the is classical not illicit. Carpio-Morales. vs. the petition is PARTLY GRANTED. Notes. 2006.00. with interest of 6% from the date of filing of the complaint until fully paid. Respondents are ORDERED to pay petitioners P183. December 6. and to grant indemnity for damages in cases where there when Commercial Company. 2003 of the Court of Appeals in CAG. plus legal interest of 12% from the finality of this decision until fully paid. P50. Evangelista b. in favor of respondents is hereby AFFIRMED. concur. The Decision dated April 30.416. known to contain what is commonly 35 Uypitching v. Reyes. Petition partly granted.R. other than judicial costs. 2008 315 ASJ Corporation vs. _______________ c. Carpio.000. except: (1) When exemplary damages are awarded. Court of Appeals. No pronouncement as to costs.000. with legal interest of 12% from the date of finality of this judgment until fully paid. and (Sea traditional theory. Jr. The award of moral damages. Quiamco.644. 545.00. SO ORDERED. .10.R.00. judgment modified. Evangelista. The award of actual damages of P529.000. 146322. 452 SCRA 532 [2005]) [ASJ Corporation vs. FEBRUARY 14. Tinga and Velasco. 510 SCRA 172. cannot be recovered. d..852. 545 SCRA 300(2008)] 297 Page is hereby REDUCED to P408. respectively.80 as actual damages.—The principle of abuse of rights stated in Article 19 of the Civil Code departs from the classical theory that ‚he who uses a right injures no one‛—the is an modern abuse of tendency rights. 315 referred to as the principle of abuse of rights. the object of the article being to set certain standards which must be observed not only in the exercise of one’s rights but also in the performance of one’s duties. 56082 is hereby MODIFIED as follows: a. All other claims are hereby DENIED. is not a panacea for all human hurts and social grievances. 319 SCRA 210 [1999]) Article 19 of the Civil Code. 173. G.‚In the absence of stipulation.

p. It provides that it was "responsible for the availability of bottom or vessel" and that it "guarantees the availability of bottom or vessel to ship the quantity of sulfur within the time specified in this bid" (Exh.—They acted of within sale. 1982 789 wishing told to purchase cable crude it via that it should does from not disclose its to a that third the sulfur principal. defendants-appellants. exceeds the limits of its authority in subsequently signing the contract. October 23. 117. the sales not sign contract unless it wish to assume sole responsibility for the shipment. 22. vs.—Namerco's bid or offer is even more explicit. contend the The delivery of the sulfur was conditioned on the availability of a vessel to shipment as agent Namerco the scope authority signing contract documentary evidence belies these contentions. The invitation to bid issued by the NPC provides that nonavailability of a steamer to transport the sulfur is not a ground for nonpayment of the liquidated damages in case of nonperformance by the seller. National Merchandising Corp. L-33819 and L-33897. . Same. CORPORATION plaintiff-appellant. and DOMESTIC vs. Record on Appeal). Same. Contracts. Same. not carry barne the Damages.* * SECOND DIVISION. NATIONAL INSURANCE MERCHANDISING COMPANY OF THE PHILIPPINES. out by Defendant's the and in terms that of contention the that it is not liable that of for the its damages in case of non-availability of a steamer to deliver the sulfur is contract. 36. Agency. An agent which person principal VOL. In the contract of sale itself item 15 of the invitation to bid is reproduced in Article 9 which provides that "it is clearly understood that in no event shall the seller be entitled to an extension of time or be exempt from the payment of liquidated damages herein specified for reason of lack of bottom or vessel" (Exh.NATIONAL POWER CORPORATION. B. 1982.—We ________________ 298 Page National Power Corp. Same. Defendants' Record on Appeal). Nos. OCTOBER 23. p. Same. E.

Same. 725). or one day before the contract of sale was signed. Three days later. Same. Same. 6th Ed.—Manresa says that the agent who exceeds the limits of his authority is personally liable "porque realmente obra sin poderes" and the third person who contracts with the agent in such a case would be defrauded if he would not be allowed to sue the agent (11 Codigo Civil. Here. Same. 1982 791 National Power Corp. 1956. And that rule is complemented by article 1898 of the Civil Code which Page . 14. In the instant case. Same. 8th Ed. In a cable dated October 16. replied the NPC would in his VOL. Same. 1956. lo que equivale a obrar sin mandato" (4 Derecho Civil Español. agree with the trial court that Namerco is liable for damages because under article 1897 of the Civil Code the agent who exceeds the limits of his authority without giving the party with whom he contracts sufficient notice of his powers is personally liable to such party. National Merchandising Corp. and. The rule that a person dealing with an agent must 299 inquire into the limits of the agent's authority does not apply where the agent is being held directly responsible for taking chances in exceeding its authority. Same. 117. V). As observed by Castan Tobeñas. Same. Same. Same. vs. OCTOBER 23. 14-A and Exh. The rule in Art. p. Same. Same. Same. or on October 19.. it acted in its own name. The truth is that even before the contract of sale was signed Namerco was already aware that its principal was having difficulties in booking shipping space.. p. that he had no choice forfeit Namerco's bidder's bond in the sum of P45. it exceeded because article 1897 implies that the agent who acts in excess of his authority is personally liable to the party with whom he contracted. National Merchandising Corp. Same. the contract containing the stipulation for liquidated damages is not being enforced against its principal but against the agent and its surety. T). the New York firm cabled contract Namerco of sale that and the that firm did not consider the itself bound on by its the own Namerco signed contract responsibility. vs. damages against the agent itself for doing what it did without authority.790 its authority. Same. 1403 of the Civil Code that a contract entered into by an agent beyond his authority is unenforceable does not apply where the contract is being enforced as to 791 790 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED National Power Corp. it is the agent that is sought to be held liable on a contract of sale which was expressly repudiated by the principal because the agent took chances.—Sycip.100 posted by the Domestic Insurance Company if the contract was not formalized (Exh. 1956. Same. the New York supplier advised Namerco that the latter should not sign the contract unless it (Namerco) wished to assume sole responsibility for the shipment (Exh. Namerco's but to finalize the contract of sale because president. An agent who exceeds his authority is personally liable for damages.—That is not so in this case. an agent "que haya traspasado los limites del mandato. Same. 1972. 520).—It is being enforced against the agent letter to the seller dated also October 16. in effect.— We hold that defendants' contention is untenable because article 1403 refers to the unenforceability of the contract against the principal.

It would not be correct to hold in this case that the NPC suffered damages in name only or that the breach of contract was merely technical in character. whom contracted is aware of the limits of the powers granted by the principal". Agency. authority. It became the principal in the performance bond. In the last analysis. and the principal does not ratify contract. Liquidated damages agreed upon may be equitably 300 Page 792 reduced. Namerco is bound under the contract of sale. as of said the agent virtually is acted that as the its own principal. Same. An agent must disclose the limits of its authority to For avoid that personal reason bound liability and by for ultra vires contracts. sulfur.—These contentions have already been resolved in the preceding discussion. vs.provides the that "if it the shall agent be contracts void if the in the party name with of the principal.J. affect the surety's liability thereon. because the Namerco of exceeded which. The stipulation for liquidated damages is intended to obviate controversy on the amount of by it for damages. That contention cannot be sustained because it was Namerco that actually solicited the bond from the Domestic Insurance Company and. enforceable against its principal. Damages.S. it virtually acted in its own name and not as agent and it is. as explained already. We find no sanction or justification for NPC's claim that it is . the Domestic Insurance Company acted as surety for Namerco. Same. Interest. especially in the absence of fraud. Same. Same.—With respect to the imposition of the legal of interest on or a damages a filing of the defendants' of complaint contention this case quarter century that exceeding the scope of his authority. A surety company which guaranteed meritorious.—The rule is that "want of authority 792 nondelivery liquidated damages to be paid as indemnity to the NPC.J. the agent SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED National Power Corp. Same. 466). exact the fixed The that difficult the ascertain So. It would be manifestly inequitable to collect interest on the damages especially considering disposition been considerably delayed due to no fault of the defendants.—Namerco the limits never of is its not disclosed to the NPC the cabled or written instructions of its principal. the where litigation prolonged in is has through no fault of defendant. Bonds. the complaint was the of filed is not from just the ago. National Merchandising Corp. If. as a general rule. Contracts. the agent. Contracts. Same. 525). Same. therefore.S. Same. Same. Same. On the other hand.— Insurance Another contention defendants Domestic should be enforced instead of awarding only nominal damages. but for the New York firm which is not liable on the contract of sale. contract sale however. of the person who executes an obligation as the agent or representative of the principal will not. even though the obligation is not binding on the principal" (72 C. amount Company is not liable to the NPC because its bond was posted. then it follows that it is bound by the stipulation for liquidated damages in that contract. reason might of be of There the can be no of question the the they that the NPC parties of suffered damages because its production of fertilizer was disrupted or diminished foresaw damages nondelivery to sulfur. Same. Where liquidated damages are agreed upon the same performance of foreign principal of a domestic agent is liable on its guarantee to the party with which the local agent dealt with in excess of its authority. as contemplated in articles 1897 and 1898. Imposition of interest on principal as of the time rate 1957.—No proof of pecuniary loss is required for the recovery of liquidated damages. not for Namerco. Namerco is being held liable under the contract of sale because it virtually acted in its own name. nominal damages are damages in name only or are in fact the same as no damages (25 C.

Luna.716 (Exh. 117. E). ordering defendants National Merchandising Corporation and Domestic Insurance Company of the Philippines to pay solidarity to the National Power Corporation reduced liquidated damages in the sum of Page .114.: 794 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED National Power Corp. of the National Power Corporation and National of 11 VOL. 794 The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. rate of interest from the filing of the complaint and the costs (Civil Case No. APPEAL from the decision of the Court of First Instance of Manila. Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellant. On October 17. 301 Plaintiff National Power Corporation appealed on questions of law from the decision of the Court of First Instance of Manila dated October 10. Manalo & Feliciano for defendants-appellants. 2613 which amended section 17 of the Judiciary Law. On that same date.56 plus legal.100 which is equivalent to their bidder's bond or to about ten percent of the selling price of the sulfur. a performance bond in the sum of P90.143. executed in Manila a contract for the purchase by the NPC from the New York firm of four thousand long tons of crude sulfur for its Maria Cristina Fertilizer Plant in Iligan City at a total price of (450. 793 P72. National Merchandising Corp. vs.20 was executed by the Domestic Insurance Company in favor of the NPC to guarantee the seller's obligations (Exh. Sycip. A painstaking evaluation of the equities of the case in the light of the arguments of the parties as expounded in their five briefs leads to the conclusion that the damages due from the defendants should be further reduced to P45. OCTOBER 23. 33114). J. Salazar. The two defendants appealed from the same decision allegedly because it is contrary to law and the evidence. It was stipulated in the contract of sale that the seller would deliver the sulfur at Iligan City within sixty days from notice of the establishment in its favor of a letter of credit for $212.120 and that failure to effect delivery would subject the seller and its surety to the payment of liquidated damages at the rate of two-fifth of one percent of the full contract price for the first thirty days of default and four-fifth of one This case is about the recovery of liquidated damages from a seller's agent that allegedly exceeded its authority in negotiating the sale.80 and defendants' appeal is tied up with plaintiff's appeal on questions of law. as the representative the International Commodities Corporation Mercer Street. C). Merchandising Corporation (Namerco) of 3111 Nagtahan Street. AQUINO. Manila. 1982 793 National Power Corp. As the amount originally involved is P360. 1956.572. National Merchandising Corp. defendants' appeal can be entertained under Republic Act No. 1966. vs.entitled to the full payment of the liquidated damages computed by its official. New York City (Exh.

although the records on appeal were P360.085. The trial court in its order of January 17. The two cases. Total: P360. 1957 demanded from The same counsel in his Namerco the payment of VOL. of July 11. 1957 there was a shutdown of the NPC's fertilizer plant because there was no sulfur. 1957 (Exh. He explained that time was of the essence of the contract.572.percent for every day thereafter until complete delivery is made (Art. 1957. as the assignee of the New York corporation and after the latter was dropped as a defendant in Civil Case No. The New York supplier was not able to deliver the sulfur due to its inability to secure shipping space. of the opening on November 8 of a letter of credit for $212. Namerco and the Domestic Insurance Company for the recovery of the stipulated liquidated damages (Civil Case No. Page . On November 5.572. In a letter dated February 27. 80-Wallick). 1957. 37019. and May 9. Defendants' Record on Appeal). Notice of that letter of credit was received by cable by the New York firm on November 15.486.120 in favor of International Commodities Corporation which would expire on January 31. 1982 795 National Power Corp. or P54. K). the NPC sued the New York firm. 33114). In this Civil Case No. Thus. During the period from January 20 to 26. The appeal was dismissed because the record on appeal did not disclose that the appeal was perfected on time (Res. No fertilizer was produced (Exh. the trial court dismissed Wallick's action for damages against Namerco because the assignment in favor of Wallick was champertous in character. the deadline for the delivery of the sulfur was January 15. 111. 117. both filed in the Court of First Instance of Manila. In Civil Case No. On the other hand. G). Namerco was notified of the rescission of the contract. 1956. I). they were elevated to this Court in 1971.80. 8. In a letter dated November 12.92 for the first thirty days and P306. A joint trial was held. the president of Namerco. The Government Corporate Counsel in his letter to Sycip dated May 8. vs. A similar demand was made upon the surety (Exh. 60. Defendants' Record on Appeal). Melvin Wallick. 1972 in L33893). The liquidated damages were computed on the basis of the 115-day period between January 15. the general manager of the NPC advised Namerco and the Domestic Insurance Company that under Article 9 of the contract of sale "nonavailability of bottom or vessel" was not a fortuitous event that would excuse nonperformance and that the NPC would resort to legal remedies to enforce its rights (Exh. the NPC advised John Z. 37019). 1957 rescinded the contract of sale due to the New York supplier's nonperformance of its obligations (Exh. 33114. L and M). 33114. OCTOBER 23. The lower court rendered separate decisions in the two cases on the same date. Sycip. 1957. the deadline for the delivery of the 302 sulfur at Iligan City. Wallick appealed to this Court. p. sued Namerco for damages in connection with the same sulfur transaction (Civil Case No.88 for the remaining eighty-five days. 1956 (Exh. were consolidated. inexplicably. 1957. H and H-1). letter of June 8. 1957 when 795 approved in 1967. National Merchandising Corp. 1958 dismissed the case as to the New York firm for lack of jurisdiction because it was not doing business in the Philippines (p.80 as liquidated damages. That anomaly initially contributed to the delay in the adjudication of this case.

The invitation to bid issued by the NPC provides that nonavailability of a steamer to transport the sulfur is not a ground for non796 in no event shall the herein Contractor specified be for exempt reason from of the of payment bottom of or liquidated damages lack vessel. In case of award of contract. failure to ship on time allegedly due to nonavailability of vessels shall not exempt the Contractor from payment of liquidated damages provided in item 15 of this specification. x x x. was not a justification for nonpayment of the liquidated damages. Record on Appeal). payment of the liquidated damages in case of nonperformance by the seller.Defendants' appeal.—They contend that the delivery of the sulfur was conditioned on the availability of a vessel to carry the shipment and that Namerco acted within the scope of its authority as agent in signing the contract of sale. Lack of bottom or nonavailability of vessel shall. 1982 797 National Power Corp. B. contrary to its principal's instruction. Responsibility for availability of vessel. vs. National Merchandising Corp. N). The documentary evidence belies these contentions. p. 36. It is agreed that prior making made previous arrangements regarding shipments within the required time. The trial court rightly concluded that Namerco acted beyond the bounds of its authority because it violated its principal's cabled instructions (1) that the delivery of the sulfur should be "C & F Manila". National Merchandising Corp. p. In the contract of sale itself item 15 of the invitation to bid is 796 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED National Power Corp." "15. OCTOBER 23." Namerco's bid or offer is even more explicit. Defendants' Record on Appeal). 117. the terms 'unforeseeable causes beyond reproduced in Article 9 which provides that "it is clearly understood that in no event shall the seller be entitled to an extension of time or be exempt from the payment of liquidated damages herein specified for reason of lack of bottom or vessel" (Exh. 22. Liquidated damages. in no case. Namerco did not disclose that cable to the NPC and. L-33819. However. It provides that it was "responsible for the availability of bottom or vessel" and that it "guarantees the availability of bottom or vessel to ship the quantity of sulfur within the time specified in this bid" (Exh. "4. vs.—xxx xxx xxx "Availability of vessel being a responsibility of the Contractor as specified in item 4 of this specification.—The availability of vessel to transport the quantity of sulfur within the time specified in item 14 of this specification shall be the responsibility of the bidder. be considered as a ground for extension of time. E. It is clearly understood that Page . used a herein bidder shall shall not have be deemed to embrace or include lack or nonavailability of bottom or vessel. not "C & F 303 the control and without the fault or negligence of the Contractor' and 'force to majeure' his as bid. 1956 stated that the sale was subject to availability of a steamer (Exh. it agreed that nonavailability of a steamer 797 VOL. It is true that the New York corporation in its cable to Namerco dated August 9.

1956 were even more revealing. 304 Page Three days later. Said the vice-president of the New York firm to Namerco: "As we have pointed out to you before. In its letters dated November 8 and 19. Record on Appeal). for its failure to do so. Here. the New York corporation informed Namerco that since the latter acted contrary to the former's cabled instructions. that he had no choice but to finalize the contract of sale because the NPC would forfeit Namerco's bidder's bond in the sum of P45.100 posted by the Domestic Insurance Company if the contract was not formalized (Exh. it acted in its own name. 1956. The defendants argue that it was incumbent upon the NPC to inquire into the extent of the agent's authority and.Iligan City". or one day before the contract of sale was signed. The truth is that even before the contract of sale was signed Namerco was already aware that its principal was having difficulties in booking shipping space. it could not claim any liquidated damages which. 14-A and Exh. according to the defendants. you have acted strictly contrary to our repeated instructions and. It bluntly told Namerco that the latter was never authorized to enter into the contract and that it acted contrary to the repeated instructions of the former (Exh. (2) that the sale be subject to the availability of a steamer and (3) that the seller should be allowed to withdraw right away the full amount of the letter of credit and not merely eighty percent thereof (pp. Sycip. 1956. in effect. T). Namerco's president. The letters of the New York firm dated November 26 and December 11. were provided for merely to make the seller more diligent in looking for a steamer to transport the sulfur. In a cable dated October 16. We the agree limits with of the trial court that Namerco giving is the is liable for damages whom to he such 798 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED National Power Corp. the former disclaimed Y-1). U and Z). cabled contract Namerco of sale that and the that firm did not consider the itself bound on by its the own Namerco signed contract responsibility (Exh. V). it is the agent that it sought to be held liable on a contract of sale which was expressly repudiated by the principal because the agent took chances. vs. replied in his letter to the seller dated also October 16. it exceeded its authority. sufficient powers personally dealing with an agent is put upon inquiry and must discover upon his peril the authority of the agent would apply in this case if the principal is sought to be held liable on the contract entered into by the agent. or on October 19. the New York firm 798 . Y and because under article 1897 of the Civil Code the agent who exceeds his authority notice of without his party with liable contracts party." The rule relied upon by the defendants-appellants that every person responsibility for the contract and that the responsibility for the sale rested on Namerco (Exh. the New York supplier advised Namerco that the latter should not sign the contract unless it (Namerco) wished to assume sole responsibility for the shipment (Exh. you have no one but yourselves to blame. however regretfully. 123-124. 14. W). and. The NPC counter-argues that Namerco should have advised the NPC of the limitations on its authority to negotiate the sale. National Merchandising Corp. 1956. That is not so in this case.

the defendants cite article 1403 of the Civil Code which provides that a contract entered into in the name of another person by one who has acted beyond his powers is unenforceable. sea responsable personalmente respecto de el des las consecuencias de tal falta de aceptacion por parte del mandate. an agent "que haya traspasado los limites dew mandato." (26. whom contracted is aware of the limits of the powers granted by the principal". It is being enforced against the agent because article 1897 implies that the agent who acts in excess of his authority is personally liable to the party with whom he contracted. Manresa says that the agent who exceeds the limits of his authority is 800 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED National Power Corp. pp. OCTOBER 23. 1972. And that rule is complemented by article 1898 of the Civil Code which provides that "if it the shall agent be contracts void if the in the party name with of the principal. 799 The defendants also contend that the trial court erred in holding as enforceable the stipulation for liquidated damages despite its finding that the contract was executed by the agent in excess of its authority and is.As observed by Castan Tobeñas. In the instant case. 1951. que quiere que aquel que contrata como mandatario este obligado a garantizar al tercero la efectiva existencia de los poderes que afirma se halla investido. Efecto de tal garantia es el resarcimiento de los daños causados al tercero como consecuencia de la negativa del mandante a reconocer lo actuado por el mandatario. and the principal does not ratify the contract. 6th Ed. 725). In support of that contention. Scaevola. garantia impuesta coactivamente por la ley. 305 personally person liable "porque realmente the obra sin in poderes" such a and case the would third be who contracts with agent defrauded if he would not be allowed to sue the agent (11 Codigo Civil. 1956. Tal responsabilidad del mandatario se informa en el principio de la falta de garantia de la existencia del mandato y de la cualidad de mandatario. As opined by Olivieri. vs. Codigo Civil. part II. Page . 800 VOL. "si el mandante contesta o impugna el negocio juridico concluido por el mandatario con el tercero. the contract containing the stipulation for liquidated damages is not being enforced against its principal but against the agent and its surety. 1982 799 National Power Corp. que ha tratado con engaño al tercero. National Merchandising Corp. p. es justo que el mandatario. 520). therefore. p. 117. the agent exceeding the scope of his authority. vs.. We hold that defendants' contention is untenable because article 1403 refers to the unenforceability of the contract against the principal. allegedly unenforceable. 8th Ed. lo que equivale a obrar sin mandato" (4 Derecho Civil Español. siempre que el tercero mismo sea de buena fe.. National Merchandising Corp. 358-9). aduciendo el exceso de los limites impuestos.

801 VOL. as a general rule. As correctly argued by the NPC. as agent. 525). "Furthermore. And that rule is complemented by article 1898 of the Civil Code which provides the that "if it the shall agent be contracts void if the in the party name with of the principal. that interest should not be collected on the amount of damages and that the damages should be computed on the basis of a forty-five-day period and not for a period of one hundred fifteen days. Namerco is bound under Company is not liable to the NPC because its bond was posted. For that reason and because Namerco exceeded the limits of its authority. even though the obligation is not binding on the principal" (72 C. The New York corporation in its letter of April 26.It is being enforced against the agent because article 1897 implies that the agent who acts in excess of his authority is personally liable to the party with whom he contracted. As priorly discussed. If. and the principal does not ratify contract. is not well-taken. as explained already. 306 Page the contract of sale. affect the surety's liability thereon. however. cases. whom contracted is aware of the limits of the powers granted by the principal".J. Another contention of the defendants is that the Domestic Insurance authority in contracting with the NPC in the name of its principal. 42 ALR 1307. 1956 said: "We hereby certify that National Merchandising Corporation x x x are our exclusive representatives in the Philippines for the sale of our products. but for the New York firm which is not liable on the contract of sale. OCTOBER 23. 149 N. It became the principal in the performance bond.S. the agent exceeding the scope of his authority. Namerco never disclosed to the NPC the cabled or written instructions of its principal.E. therefore. Defendants' other contentions are that they should be held liable only for nominal damages. it would be unjust and inequitable for Namerco to escape liability after it had deceived the NPC. the Domestic Insurance Company acted as surety for Namerco. Namerco is being held liable under the contract of sale because it virtually acted in its own name. 38. 1982 801 National Power Corp. especially in the absence of fraud. vs. That contention cannot be sustained because it was Namerco that actually solicited the bond from the Domestic Insurance Company and. 117. The NPC was unaware of the limitations on the powers granted by the New York firm to Namerco. as contemplated in articles 1897 and 1898." (Exh. Defendants' contention that Namerco's liability should be based on tort or quasi-delict. we certify that they are empowered to present our offers in our behalf in accordance with our cabled or written instructions. the agent. like Mendelsohn vs. Namerco. not for Namerco. The rule is that "want of authority of the person who ex-ecutes an obligation as the agent or representative of the principal will not. it virtually acted in its own name and not as agent and it is. as held in some American . then it follows that it is bound by the stipulation for liquidated damages in that contract. National Merchandising Corp. In the last analysis. C). bound by the contract of sale which. exceeded the limits of its Holton. is not enforceable against its principal.

The trial court also took into account the fact that the selling price of the sulfur was P450. National Merchandising Corp. L-33897. In reducing the liquidated damages. Texas to reach Iligan City. with more reason. 803 amount of damages for nondelivery of the sulfur. There can be no question that the NPC suffered damages 802 persistent efforts of Namerco and its principal to charter a steamer and 802 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED National Power Corp. The NPC contends it should that be Namerco responsible was for an all obligor in bad which faith could and. It would be manifestly inequitable to collect interest on the damages especially considering that the disposition of this case has been considerably delayed due to no fault of the defendants. Apparently. Namerco and its surety) because it is clearly provided that liquidated damages are recoverable for delay in the delivery of the sulfur and. NPC's appeal. nominal damages are damages in name only or are in fact the same as no damages (25 C. On the other hand.—The trial court reduced the liquidated damages to twenty percent of the stipulated amount. required liquidated leaving be Galveston. The NPC contends that it is entitled to the full amount of liquidated damages in the sum of P360. because its production of fertilizer was disrupted or diminished by reason of the nondelivery of the sulfur.With respect to the imposition of the legal rate of interest on the correct to hold in this case that the NPC suffered damages in name only or that the breach of contract was merely technical in character. The parties foresaw that it might be difficult to ascertain the exact that the failure of the New York firm to secure shipping space was not attributable to its fault or negligence. they fixed the 307 Page liquidated damages to be paid as indemnity to the NPC. be therefore. or a quarter of a century ago.80. The contention that only nominal damages should be adjudged is basis in days. that point need not be resolved view conclusion that damages should equivalent to the amount of the bidder's bond posted by Namerco.J. the trial court regarded as an equitable consideration the contrary to the intention of the parties (NPC. The stipulation for liquidated damages is intended to obviate controversy on the amount of damages. 466). for nondelivery. damages reasonably attributed to its nonperformance of the obligation as provided in article 2201 of the Civil Code. whether intended as an indemnity or a penalty.572. So.S. shall be equitably reduced if they are iniquitous or unconscionable". vs.716 and that to award as liquidated damages more than eighty percent of the price would not be altogether reasonable. As to the of contention forty-five of our that the the damages period the should be by computed a vessel on the damages from the filing of the complaint in 1957. No proof of pecuniary loss is required for the recovery of liquidated damages. It would not be . the trial court relied on article 2227 of the Civil Code which provides that "liquidated damages. defendants' contention is meritorious.

37 SCRA 663). 117 SCRA 789(1982)] equities of the case in the light of the arguments of the parties as expounded in their five briefs leads to the conclusion that the damages due from the defendants should be further reduced to P45. Savellano actual damages. was not liable for the liquidated damages stipulated in the alleged liability should be based on tort or quasi-delict and not on the contract of sale. OCTOBER 23. National Merchandising Corp. because as it was able to secure the unenforceable sulfur from that 804 contract award already is and noted. (Limjoco vs. Court of Appeals. vs. 13 SCRA 762).. is likewise not liable. Concepcion. 1982 803 National Power Corp. WHEREFORE. Tabora.100 which is equivalent to their bidder's bond or to about ten percent of the selling price of the sulfur. Page .—A painstaking evaluation of the amount as the earnest money to be returned cannot be assailed on the ground of its being iniquitous or unconscionable. Abad Santos. SO ORDERED. Notes. We find no sanction or justification for NPC's claim that it is entitled to the full payment of the liquidated damages computed by its official. On the other hand. 1960) and that the reduced stipulated acted in damages faith considering not Namerco good suffer any SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED Meralco Securities Corporation vs. concur. then the insurance company. its surety. National Merchandising Corp. These contentions have already been resolved in the preceding An agreement for the payment of liquidated damages in the same discussion. 804 another source (58-59 tsn November 10.. [National Power Corp. highly that the Namerco's iniquitous. (Lawyers Cooperative vs.VOL. the defendants argue that Namerco having acted as a mere agent. De Castro. Judgment modified. that. that if Namerco is not liable. Guerrero. and Escolin. JJ. Jr. NPC did Makasiar (Chairman). the are lower court's to judgment pay is modified to the and defendants Power National Merchandising Corporation and Domestic Insurance Company of 308 the Philippines ordered solidarity National Corporation the sum of P45. 117. Ruling on the amount of damages. vs.. No costs.100.00 as liquidated damages. that the NPC is entitled only to nominal of of damages sale.—A debtor should not be made to pay liquidated damages when his denial to pay the balance of the account is not due to bad faith.

The essence of the crime of kidnapping is the actual deprivation of the victim’s liberty coupled with the intent of the accused to effect it.—If the victim is a minor. _______________ * EN BANC. plaintiff-appellee. 174659.Criminal elements: to detain Law. July 28. manner deprives the latter of his liberty. if the victim is kidnapped and illegally detained for the purpose of extorting ransom. 299 VOL. Same. July 28. detains has not the either or following of in the any parents of the victim or a public officer who has a duty under the law person. 560. (3) the act of detention or kidnapping must be illegal and (4) in the commission of the offense. the duration of his detention becomes inconsequential.* 309 299 People vs. kidnaps another. 2008 G.R. any of the following for circumstances more than is present: days. vs. (b) (a) it the is kidnapping committed or by detention lasts three simulating public authority. If the victim is a minor. the duration of his detention is immaterial. female or a public official. No. Mamantak PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. Same.—The is he a private or crime individual. or the victim is kidnapped and illegally detained for the purpose of extorting ransom. the offender (2) Elements. (c) any serious physical injuries are inflicted upon the person kidnapped or detained or threats to kill him are made or (d) the person kidnapped or detained is a minor. accused-appellants. (1) a Kidnapping. the duration of his detention becomes inconsequential. Page . 2008. Likewise. RAGA SARAPIDA MAMANTAK and LIKAD SARAPIDA TAURAK.

The Solicitor General for plaintiff-appellee. Damages. Evidence to be believed must not only proceed from the mouth of a credible witness but must be credible in itself. Same. the or correction. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court.—Ransom captivity. Moreover. the P50. amount purpose for ransom immaterial. 9346 or the Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty has banned the death penalty and reduced all death Taurak for accused-appellants. Penalties. 521 SCRA 327 (2007). When the crime of kidnapping is attended by a demand award of for ransom.000 Moreover. Evidence. we 300 300 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Mamantak reduce the penalty imposed on appellants from death to reclusion whatever form and for whatever length of time. Same. APPEAL from a decision of the Court of Appeals. RA 9346 has banned the death penalty and reduced all death sentences to reclusion perpetua without eligibility for parole. CORONA. are accorded great. of The trial and and appellate correctly statements Taurak perpetua.000 to indemnity was Pursuant minority Garalde. essence It of the not his crime only liberty of the in kidnapping is the actual deprivation of the victim’s liberty coupled with accused person includes of imprisonment deprivation sentences point of to law. Words him him and from from as Phrases. 310 Same. 7659). civil by way of example proper. J. a No consideration paid or demanded for the redemption of a captured person specific chip in form required to consummate the felony of kidnapping for ransom as long as ransom intended The bargaining of and exchange the victim’s freedom.000 considering Christopher. While the penalty for kidnapping for the purpose of extorting ransom from the victim or any other person under Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code is death.000 moral damages is increased P200. Republic Act No. to but effect also the The it. Saber. since the crime was attended by a demand for ransom.: Page . the award of P50. Same.000 People v. Same. reclusion While perpetua the penalty without for eligibility kidnapping for for parole. Pursuant to this law.—In line with prevailing jurisprudence. that that the Same. Same.—One the purpose final of extorting ransom from the victim or any other person under Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code is death.—Evidence to be believed must not only proceed from the mouth of a credible courts witness but must ruled be that credible the in itself. value when affirmed by the Court of Appeals. Witnesses. of price price ransom for or or is the is consideration paid or demanded for the redemption of a captured person will will release release is captivity. to P100. money. if not conclusive. Rashid A. factual findings of the trial court. And liberty is not limited to mere physical restraint but embraces one’s right to enjoy his Godgiven faculties subject only to such restraints necessary for the common welfare. exemplary damages is proper. including its assessment of the credibility of the witnesses and the probative weight thereof. without eligibility for parole. ‚Ransom‛ means means money.The crime is qualified and becomes punishable by death even if none of the circumstances mentioned in paragraphs 1 to 4 of Article 267 of the the Revised intent of of Penal the a Code is present. Same. Raga Sarapida Mamantak and Likad Sarapida Mamantak did not deserve credence. to of P100. Christopher is entitled exemplary damages. Death Penalty Law (RA No. and by way of example or correction.

000 in exchange for the boy. She then contacted the mysterious woman through the cellphone number the latter had previously given her. Justice law. Mamantak Barely had Christopher gone from his mother’s sight when she realized that he had disappeared. There are people who are simply incapable of feeling pity or Despite the publicity. And again upon being reunited with him some 16 months later when he could neither recognize her nor remember who he was.information. Teresa sought the help of the Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Task Force (PAOCTF). Teresa and Christopher looked for a vacant table while Zenaida proceeded to order their food. A team was formed and Police Officer (PO)31 Juliet Palafox was designated to act as Teresa’s niece. Ma. When the woman instructed her to immediately board a ship for Mindanao. Teresa went with demands that those responsible for this cruel and agonizing sounded claimed have Christopher and asked for P30. they reported him missing to the nearest police detachment. 2001. Together with the PAOCTF team. 2001. Lanao del Norte. 302 311 their continued search for the child was futile. on December 13. they arrived in Iligan City and proceeded to the designated meeting place. Manila.m. a 2001. muslim. On April 7. Manila. The following day. when Teresa went there. Worse. someone gave her a recent picture of Christopher. Teresa reasoned that she had not raised the ransom money yet.. As 1 In some parts of the records. two weeks before Christmas on December 13. to no avail. Christopher followed Zenaida to the counter. Binondo. 2008 301 People vs. Teresa went to several TV and radio stations to Page inform the public of the loss of Christopher and to appeal for help and 302 . 301 VOL. On March 27. Teresa 2001. Teresa The received caller a call from to a woman custody who of compassion for others. On February like 25. pranksters were gleefully having a field day aggravating her misery. 1999. 1999. July 28. At about 3:00 p. They then agreed to conduct the pay off in the morning of April 7. 2001 at Pitang’s Carinderia in Kapatagan. She and her sister frantically looked for him inside and outside the premises of the fastfood outlet. PO2. to the a same recent muslim-sounding photo of her woman son from called the and Jalal instructed get Restaurant at the Muslim Center in Quiapo. Teresa Basario must have felt a dagger deep in her heart when she lost her two-year old son. Christopher. Shortly after Teresa took her seat. Teresa left for Mindanao on April 4. Teresa received no word about Christopher’s whereabouts. True enough. 560. _______________ separation of mother and child be punished to the full extent of the Christopher and her elder sister Zenaida to a McDonald’s outlet in the KP Tower in Juan Luna St. however.

the above-named accused conspiring. PO3 Palafox gave the pre-agreed signal and the PAOCTF team then closed in and arrested Mamantak and Taurak. In was defense. she was pregnant with her third child. The sisters Mamantak and Taurak were charged with kidnapping for Mamantak then told Teresa that she would ask a cousin of Bato if the latter was already in Kapatagan. The child. Mamantak wares and in Taurak Divisoria denied market. They were Raga Sarapida Mamantak and Likad Sarapida Taurak. CONTRARY TO LAW. Taurak came near Teresa and PO3 Palafox and informed them that she had Christopher. However. she talked to him but he did not seem to understand her. 2008 303 People vs. At this juncture. Palafox 312 which Taurak’s watchful Inside Taurak testified that at the time and date of the alleged kidnapping. the child was unmoved. supposedly the cousin of Bato. When Christopher wandering about aimlessly.000. and Taurak interrupted that her under and Teresa niece PO3 and it demanded and boarded eyes. saw She was answered parked had pointed Thereafter. the boy gave a muslim name with ‚Taurak‛ as surname.00) to the damage and prejudice of Christopher Basario in said amount and such other amount as maybe awarded to him under the provisions of the Civil Code. Several hours later. Mamantak money. carry away and deprive Christopher Basario. Teresa almost lost her sanity. She asked Teresa to go with her but the latter insisted on their agreement that the boy be handed over at the carinderia. She knew Bato. in the afternoon of the same day.m. the a ransom to PO3 the jeepney ransom under the following Information: ‚That on December 13. the charges against she them. On the other hand. Mamantak outside.. Teresa cried and embraced him. PO3 Palafox handed the ransom money to Mamantak. Taurak asked Teresa and PO3 Palafox to come with her but they refused. Mamantak Christopher relearned Tagalog after a month and gradually began to forget the incident. He no longer recognized nor understood her for he could only speak in the muslim dialect. a two-year old minor of his liberty against his will for the purpose of extorting ransom as in fact a demand for ransom was made as a condition for his release amounting to THIRTY THOUSAND PESOS (P30.SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Page . Palafox. eventually died. When asked who he was. Mamantak turned to Taurak.‛ Mamantak and Taurak pleaded not guilty when arraigned. Taurak returned and told Teresa that Christopher was in a nearby ice plant. Manila and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. left and came back after several minutes with Christopher. Taurak relented. After pre-trial. confederating and mutually helping one another and grouping themselves together. 1999 in Binondo. the name written at the back of the picture she showed the photo to received in Jalal Restaurant in who stated that she Manila. At the time Christopher was kidnapped. while Teresa and PO3 Palafox were waiting at Pitang’s Carinderia. trial ensued and the parties presented their respective evidence. Mamantak At around 8:30 a. Taurak reluctantly agreed to leave Mamantak with them while she fetched Christopher. 560. Teresa replied that they were waiting for a certain Rocma Bato. Mamantak approached Teresa and PO3 Palafox and asked who they were waiting for. Mamantak 303 VOL. unlawfully and feloniously take. born very sickly. Upon seeing her son. she peddling Manila. two women came. did then and there. July 28. willfully. She took the boy under her care and waited jeepney.

Sometime later. she did not know the exact whereabouts of Taurak who was in Manila and whom she had not seen for some time. July 28. Both accused are given credit for the preventive imprisonment undergone by them during the pendency of this case. When Teresa arrived later. Court of Appeals Records.00 as compensatory damages and PHP50. she was shocked when members of the PAOCTF suddenly arrested her. 304 304 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. As it was already 7:00 p. Mamantak On February 17. 1999.00 as moral damages. the trial court rendered a decision2 on November 30. She protested because she was innocent. 2001 at Pitang’s Carinderia but only by chance. Taurak She was stunned when PAOCTF members suddenly arrested her and her sister as she had not committed any crime and there was no warrant for her arrest. The next day.000. she and her husband took the boy to the nearest police outpost but no one was there so they just brought the boy to their stall. judgment is hereby rendered finding both accused LIKAD SARAPIDA TAURAK and accused RAGA SARAPIDA _______________ 2 Penned by Acting Presiding Judge Amor A. She did not bring the boy at first as a precautionary measure. pp. Only after confirming that Teresa was the boy’s mother did she relinquish custody to her. Lanao del Norte on April 7. 7659 and both are hereby sentenced to suffer the penalty of RECLUSION PERPETUA. she brought the boy home with her to the Muslim Center in Quiapo. No one did. 560. They met again on April 7.. 23-39. Mamantak [MAMANTAK] GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of Kidnapping for Ransom as amended by RA No. Taurak brought the child to Maganding. Taurak told her that she had found the boy and was returning him to his mother. Lanao del Sur. Reyes of the Regional Trial Court of Manila. Mamantak corroborated her sister Taurak’s testimony. At that time. Teresa contacted her and asked for Christopher’s picture for confirmation. She claimed that she was at Nunungan. Sultan Kumander. Both accused are hereby jointly and severally ordered to pay the Christopher Basario represented by the mother.‛3 313 Page talked to her and then left. 305 VOL. Branch 43. They opted to keep the boy until his parents could claim him.for someone to come for him.000.] Teresa Basario the amount of PHP50. Lanao del Norte on December 13. . Mamantak stayed in the carinderia all the while. returning after a few hours with Christopher whom Mamantak saw for the first time. With costs against the accused. waiting for her ride home at 4:00 p. However. 2001. There were no charges against her nor was there a warrant for her arrest. [Ma. SO ORDERED.m. 2004 finding Taurak and Mamantak guilty as charged: ‚WHEREFORE. After evaluating the respective evidence of the parties. 2008 305 People vs. 2001. It was at this point that Taurak arranged a meeting at Pitang’s Carinderia in Kapatagan. She happened to be there when Taurak came.m.

to March in not 31. Rollo. If the person kidnapped or detained shall be a minor. or in any _______________ committed for the purpose of extorting ransom from the victim or any other person. 306 314 Page 306 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED .6 We affirm the Court of Appeals. pp. not either of the parents of the victim7 or a public officer who has a duty under the law to detain a person. Such circumstance required the imposition of the death penalty. Kidnapping is defined and punished under Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code. 2006. 1. Kidnapping and serious illegal detention. 3 Id. 267.5 13. or is subjected to torture or dehumanizing acts. and Barrios Santiago (deceased) Javier and When the victim is killed or dies as a consequence of the detention or is raped. female or a public officer. If days.‛ The crime has the following elements: (1) the offender is a private individual.Taurak and Mamantak appealed to the Court of Appeals. Roberto III A. Mamantak other manner deprive him of his liberty. The penalty shall be death where the kidnapping or detention was the kidnapping or detention shall have lasted more than three case to this Court and accordingly ordered the elevation of the records. 5 Id. except when the accused is any of the parents. 2-20. or in any manner deprives the latter of his liberty. In a decision4 dated erred Thus. the maximum penalty shall be imposed. 4 Penned concurred by in Associate by Mario Justice L. 4. 2.000 conviction 124 demand Taurak amended certified People vs. or if threats to kill him shall have been made. Mamantak with modification amending the penalty from reclusion perpetua death. the appellate Pursuant Matter court to No. 6 Id. shall suffer the penalty of ransom.—Any private individual who shall kidnap or detain another. If it shall have been committed simulating public authority. the the appellate demand affirmed Section court for the ruled that as of as court the a trial court for and by the considering P30. If any serious physical injuries shall have been inflicted upon the person kidnapped or detained.8 (2) he kidnaps or detains another. with a modification of penalty. as amended by Republic Act (RA) 7659: ‚ART. _______________ Guariña Ranada (retired) of the Fifth Division of the Court of Appeals. even if none of the circumstances above-mentioned were present in the commission of the offense. 3. Rule Administrative 00-5-03-SC. the appellate reclusion perpetua to death.

Mamantak (3) (4) the act of detention or kidnapping must be illegal and in the commission of the offense. 522 SCRA 174. go with them to a far away place and learn a culture and dialect alien to him.11 And liberty is not limited to mere physical restraint but embraces one’s right to enjoy his God-given faculties subject only to such restraints necessary for the common welfare. 24 April 2007. If the victim is a minor. 12 See Rubi v.10 It . 39 Phil. he was certainly _______________ VOL. No. the crime is defined and penalized under the second paragraph of Article 271 of the Revised Penal Code. 308 308 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. 2008 307 People vs. a public officer who has no legal duty to detain a person may be prosecuted for illegal detention and kidnapping. is present: (a) the kidnapping or detention lasts for more than three days. At such a very tender age. female or a public official. Norte. (c) any serious physical injuries are inflicted upon the person kidnapped or detained or threats to kill him are made or (d) the person kidnapped or detained is a minor. he was deprived of the liberty to enjoy the company and care of his family.7 When the victim is a minor and the accused is any of the parents. He had no choice but to stay with total strangers. Likewise. During the entire time the boy was kept away from his mother. Jatulan. specially his mother. (b) it is committed by simulating public authority. the duration of his detention becomes inconsequential. Mamantak deprived or restrained of his liberty. G. Thus.R. Provincial Board of Mindoro. any of the following circumstances 9 People v. 8 A public officer (such as policeman) who has a duty under the law to detain a person but detains a person without legal ground is liable for arbitrary detention defined and penalized under Article 124 of the Revised Penal Code. 10 Id. 171653. The crime is qualified and becomes punishable by death 315 Page even if none of the circumstances mentioned in paragraphs 1 to 4 of Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code is present. He had no means. opportunity or capacity to leave appellants’ custody and return to his family on his own. the duration of his detention is immaterial.12 The and two-year-old was (both Christopher only them of suddenly almost disappeared 16 months in Binondo. 560. 307 includes not only the imprisonment of a person but also the deprivation of his liberty in whatever form and for whatever length of time. 660 (1919). from Manila and del recovered after private Taurak Lanao Mamantak individuals) in Kapatagan. 11 Id. if the victim is kidnapped and illegally detained for the purpose of extorting ransom. July 28.9 The essence of the crime of kidnapping is the actual deprivation of the victim’s liberty coupled with the intent of the accused to effect it.

July 28. of are the factual credibility findings of the if of not the trial court. On the other hand. It was like the apocryphal tale of a man accused of theft of large cattle. price or consideration paid or demanded for the redemption of a captured person that will release him from captivity. On the other hand. 519. One final point of law. Alba. when affirmed by the Court of Appeals. These were the identical factual findings of both the trial and appellate courts. It therefore treated the amount not as ransom but as a reimbursement of expenses incurred for taking care of the child.16 The amount of and purpose for the ransom is immaterial. .. (Kidnappers in Mindanao today call it reimbursement for ‚board-and-lodging.. 256 SCRA 505 (1996). 326 Phil. assessment thereof.14 The Court of Appeals considered the demand the for P30. 560.g. conclusive.g.15 No specific form of ransom is required to consummate the felony of kidnapping for ransom as long as the ransom is intended as a bargaining chip in exchange for the victim’s freedom. Mamantak’s actions (e. Thus. 309 VOL. the value including probative witnesses and weight accorded great.‛) Ransom means money. on her and clearly The role in unequivocal arranging the testimonies for the of the of prosecution of Teresa witnesses and The payment Evidence to be believed must not only proceed from the mouth of a credible witness but must be credible in itself. And how could Teresa have initiated her phone conversations with Taurak when they were total strangers to each other? Similarly. established Mamantak principal in the kidnapping of Christopher. the Court of Appeals correctly considered it as a demand for ransom.000 in exchange for his return to his mother. the trial court deemed the amount as too measly.000 was demanded as a condition for the release of Christopher to his mother. Taurak’s story that she merely gave Christopher refuge was incredible. Moreover. 2008 316 309 People vs.000 of the as a qualifying circumstance which necessitated imposition death penalty. She never even tried to bring the boy to the proper authorities or surrender him to the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s social workers in her barangay or in the city hall at any time during the 16 months he was with her. confirming the identity demanding evidence receiving ransom that money) showed was a otherwise.13 The trial and appellate courts correctly ruled that the statements of Taurak and Mamantak did not deserve its credence. the payment of P30. his excuse was that he saw a piece of rope and brought it home not knowing that there was a cow tied to the other end. While the penalty for kidnapping for the purpose of extorting ransom from the victim or any other _______________ ransom and the release of the kidnap victim (e. Mamantak Page 13 People v. There is no reason to disturb them as they are sufficiently supported by evidence. her presence in the carinderia and her acceptance of the ransom) showed without doubt that she was aiding her sister and was acting in concert with her. She demanded P30. In this case.Taurak unlawfully kept the child under her control and custody and even brought him to Lanao del Norte. compared to what must have been actually spent for the care and subsistence of Christopher for almost two years. Mamantak’s account that she was at Pitang’s Carinderia only by coincidence and that it was only there that she first saw Christopher invites nothing but disbelief.

concur. 161 (2002). 444 Phil. Pursuant to People v. People v. Moreover. G. 343 SCRA 20 (2000). 21 See People v. since the crime was attended by a demand for ransom. decision of the the appeal is hereby in DENIED. Puno (C. 61 (2003). Leonardo-De Castro and Brion. 373 SCRA 134. 66.R. Jr. G. Mamantak person under Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code17 is death.14 People v.00021 moral P200. People v. CR-H. 173055. 396 SCRA 31. 18 An Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty in the Philippines.R. Garalde. 537 SCRA 746. Jatulan. jointly and severally. They 317 are further ordered to pay. 560. 22 Id. 194. Solangon.22 WHEREFORE. 16 Id. Baldogo. 35. July 28. is increased the to award of P50. 13 April 2007. No. Carpio. The March 31. J. Azcuna and Tinga..C. 424 Phil. P50. Yambot. Ynares-Santiago.000 minority of Christopher.000 exemplary damages to their young victim Christopher Basario. 15 People v. 397 Phil. Austria-Martinez. P200. People v. and by way of example or correction. without eligibility for parole. CarpioMorales. Garcia.000 moral damages and P100. RA 934618 has banned the death penalty and reduced all death sentences to reclusion perpetua without eligibility for parole. Christopher is entitled to P100.20 the award of P50. Nachura. 521 SCRA 327. 2006 is VOL. Mamantak SO ORDERED.000 considering civil the _______________ 17 As amended by RA 7659. 2008 311 People vs. supra. 311 indemnity19 was proper.).. Court of Appeals CA-G. 21 November 2007.. 23. In line with prevailing damages jurisprudence. Quisumbing.R. JJ. Pursuant to this law.000 civil indemnity. Appellants Raga Sarapida Mamantak and Likad Sarapida Taurak are hereby found guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of kidnapping for ransom for which they are sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua without eligibility for parole. 19 See People v. No part. Solangon. 00729 AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION. No. Page . 172693. JJ. 158. Chico-Nazario. On Official Leave.. supra. 20 Supra note 12. Garalde.J.000 exemplary damages. Costs against appellants. 310 310 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. Velasco. we reduce the penalty imposed on appellants from death to reclusion perpetua. No.

Notes. is meaning. In kidnapping.—The purpose of the offender in extorting ransom is a qualifying circumstance which may be proven by his words and overt acts before. 560 SCRA 298(2008)] Page 318 . during and after the kidnapping and detention of the victim. the victim need not be taken by the accused forcibly or against his will—what is controlling is the act of the accused in detaining the victim against his or her will after the offender is able to take the victim in his custody. payment captivity. (People or or vs. or the deprivation of his liberty. kidnapped money demanded person. value. 414 SCRA 146 [2003]) [People vs. judgment affirmed with modification. J. as employed in the law. Deduyo. a price.Reyes. Appeal denied. Ransom. (People vs. Mamantak. detained a sum paid a of or consideration so used in its common or that other for releases thing from of of redemption or ordinary sense. On Leave. 429 SCRA 364 [2006]) The primary element of the crime of kidnapping is the actual confinement or restraint of the victim.. Ejandra.

However. 2004 79 The Insular Life Assurance Company. and (11) when the Court of Appeals manifestly overlooked certain relevant facts not disputed by the parties. (9) when the facts set forth in the petition as well as in the petitioner’s main and reply briefs are not disputed by the respondent. surmises or conjectures. (7) when the findings are contrary to the trial court. the Court is not a trier of facts and does not normally undertake the re-examination of the evidence presented by the contending parties is a during settled the rule trial that of in the the case recognized of the several Supreme exceptions.. Ltd. all the words. Court of Appeals when in making its findings the Court of Appeals went beyond the issues of the case. 126850. Remedial Law.80 VOL. APRIL 28.‛ Page . Appeals. that is. No. LTD. or its findings are contrary to the admissions of both the appellant and the appellee. and words in context. April 28. vs. Civil Law. not just a particular word or two. the entirety of the contract must be considered. (3) when there is grave abuse of discretion.—It exercise Court’s power of review. vs. to Furthermore. (5) when the findings of facts are conflicting. all the words. petitioner. not merely the clause relating to the ‚option to renew. Ltd. (10) when the findings of fact are premised on the supposed absence of evidence and contradicted by the evidence on record. It is a cardinal rule in contract interpretation that the ascertainment of the intention of the contracting parties is to be discharged by looking to the words they used to project that intention in their contract. 428. (2) when the inference made is manifestly mistaken. vs. attributing the doubtful ones that sense which may result from of them taken jointly. Contracts. and words in context.—It is a cardinal rule in contract interpretation that the ascertainment of the intention of the contracting parties is to be discharged by looking to the words they used to project that intention in their contract. Court of Appeals G. the Court had recognized several exceptions to this rule.* THE INSULAR LIFE ASSURANCE COMPANY. that is. the Court is not a trier of facts and does not normally undertake the re-examination of the evidence presented by the contending parties during the trial of the case considering that the findings of facts of the CA are conclusive and binding on the Court. if properly considered. Rule that in the exercise of the Supreme Court’s power of review. Article 1374 of the Civil Code requires all that the various stipulations of a contract shall be interpreted together. (6) _______________ 319 * SECOND DIVISION.R. (8) when the findings are conclusions without citation of specific evidence on which they are based. absurd or impossible. 80 disputed ‚option to renew‛ clause in the contract of lease. not words standing alone. to wit: (1) when the findings are grounded entirely on speculation. (4) when the judgment is based on a misapprehension of facts. not words standing alone. not just a particular word or two. 2004. SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Insular Life Assurance Company. to ascertain the true meaning or import of the COURT OF APPEALS and SUN BROTHERS & COMPANY. Conformably. which. respondents. would justify a different conclusion.

is not tenable. The Court would be rewriting the contract of lease between Insular and Sun Brothers under the guise of construction were we to interpret the ‚option to renew‛ clause as Sun Brothers propounds it.—As to moral damages. Balane. which can be suffered only by one having a nervous system. 2004 81 The Insular Life Assurance Company. renewal oppressive. and damages oppressive defendant fraudulent. a court. original As contract Court of has lease held and in the contracting Filipina. has no right to make new contracts for the parties or ignore those already made by them. no senses. despite the express provision in the acts. although its prior actions since January 29. indicated that it was wellaware of the contractual stipulation that after a twenty-year period of lease. Same. Damages. parties’ Inc.: corporation. the courts may not read into it any other intention that would contradict its plain import. simply to avoid seeming hardships. Posadas Law Firm for respondents. Sun Brothers was in evident bad faith when in the of negotiations for the third lease contract in 1992. The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court. vs. 428. Page . Insular’s may award for the or exemplary reckless. no emotions. subsequent Court of the Riviera wounded feelings or moral shock or social humiliation. When the language of the contract is explicit leaving no doubt as to the intention of the drafters thereof. Being an artificial person and having suffering. Insular’s prayer that moral damages not less than P5 Million be awarded because its name and reputation has been defamed by Sun Brothers.—As award the a to court wanton. serious a corporation has no feelings. fraudulent. plea if malevolent court may exemplary damages. malevolent manner. experience physical anguish. the Court finds the same meritorious. Same. The rule is that 320 moral damages can not be granted in favor of a corporation. J. APRIL 28. contemplation. Court of Appeals Same. In contracts if or the a the and quasi-contracts. AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ. In contracts quasi-contracts. existence mental only in legal fright. Ltd. Same. even the Supreme Court. of the damages defendant course wanton. justifies Neither abstract of a justice contract nor for the the rule of liberal construction the creation parties which they did not make themselves or the imposition upon one party to a contract of an obligation not assumed. 1958 when the original contract of lease was executed. anxiety. Tamase Alampay Law Offices for petitioner. the courts may not read into it any other intention that would contradict its plain import.‛ 81 VOL.— When the language of the contract is explicit leaving no doubt as to the intention of the drafters thereof. it cannot. acted in manner. acted in exemplary reckless. spanning more than three decades. as expressly provided for in the original contract of lease. vs. Moral damages can not be granted in favor of a PETITION for review on certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals. therefore.Same. the right to renew the lease was subject to such terms and conditions that the parties may mutually agree upon at the time. Appeals. it wantonly and oppressively insisted that it had a unilateral right to renew to lease thereby resulting in an impasse between the parties and which Sun Brothers took advantage of and used as a basis for instituting the proceedings for declaratory relief.

and the building constructed thereon. Sun Brothers. 5 Id. for an additional five years. Makati City (RTC for brevity) in Civil Case No. vs. 1992.R. 1987 until November 30. pp. provided the exercise of the option to renew the lease shall be made by the tenant in writing to The Insular Life Assurance Company. 92-27754 extending the lease contract subject of the petition for declaratory relief and ordering petitioner to pay attorney’s fees and costs. APRIL 28. 428. 1988. Hormachuelos. Galvez and Portia A. 1994.00.205.000. with an approximate area of 4. 83 321 Under the contract. exclusive of real estate taxes and 1 Penned by Justice Antonio M. 3 Original Record. Martinez and concurred in by Justices Ricardo P. The contract further provided for monthly rental of P50. Ltd.00.4 Sun Brothers alleged that since the lease contract does not contain any provision as to the rental or any provision for any new or additional terms or conditions in case of renewal.000. Sun Brothers & Company (Sun Brothers for brevity) filed a petition for declaratory relief with the RTC seeking judicial interpretation of the ‚option to renew‛ clause under a Contract of Lease dated September 20. 1. Sun Brothers leased for a period of five years from December 1. Ltd. 46987 affirming the Decision.205. a parcel of land. and.2 dated April 25.5 82 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Insular Life Assurance Company. The factual antecedents are as follows: On September 24. p.215 square meters. (Insular for brevity) at least ninety days before the expiration of the period. It prayed that judgment be rendered: (a) declaring that renewal under the contract of lease be for an additional period of five years under the same terms and conditions and the monthly rental should be P73. 198-199.. 1. (b) ordering Insular to pay Sun Brothers P20. 82 insurance premiums which are for the account of Sun Brothers.1 dated May 20.Before the Court is a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court which seeks the reversal of the Decision. 1996. the terms and conditions of the renewal of lease should be the same and the monthly rental should remain at P73.00 as attorney's fees and to pay the costs of suit. p. 1992. CV No.3 2 Penned by Judge Erna Falloran Aliposa. 4 Id. of the Court of Appeals (CA for brevity) in CA_______________ that the lease was renewable at the option of the tenant. 2004 83 Page . located in Makati (then a Municipality). The contract stipulated VOL. Court of Appeals G.. _______________ rendered by the Regional Trial Court (Branch 150).00 for the first year and an increase of 10% per annum for the succeeding years.

considering all the foregoing. a contract of adhesion. Court of Appeals On November 6. Ltd.00 exclusive of real estate taxes and insurance premiums. the parties still negotiated. dated April 25. the same tenant. thus. It could have provided therein that any renewal of the lease would be by mutual agreement of the parties or had specifically limited the period of the lease. is vested solely with the option to renew the said contract of the only condition made known respondent in writing at least 90 days before its expiration. ‚D‛). clearing up as it did vague portions of the previous contracts. it has always been the agreement of the parties that Sun Brothers does not have the right to impose. ‘b) declaring that the monthly rental on the leased premises be 322 entirely drafted. finalized and notarized by respondent and is. as correctly pointed out by the petitioner. judgment is hereby rendered as follows: ‘a) declaring that the contract of lease dated 30 September 1988 be renewed for another 5 years starting from 30 November 1992 and up to 1 December 1997. herein to the contract if. 8 Rollo. vs. 7 Id. Ltd. that all the contracts of lease between the parties and the repeated renewals thereof were 84 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Insular Life Assurance Company. 1992. Being a contract of adhesion. Petitioner. Amancio L. pp. such was not the intention of the parties.. pp.. less any amounts that petitioner may have paid respondent in the meantime. indeed. ruling as follows: The wording of and the need x x no x provisions of the contract The be is clear. as a matter of course. petitioner. vs.The Insular Life Assurance Company.7 that despite the presence of the renewal clause in the previous contracts of lease. It must be noted. a renewal of the lease as to the period or the rentals. Page . for the renewal of the lease in 1977 and 1987. p. Court of Appeals ‚WHEREFORE. Respondent’s claim that the lease contract (Exh. on its sole will. ‚C‛) does not contain the true intent of the parties deserves scant consideration. 16-17. 84 unambiguous lease on further that interpretation. 1994. since there is no mention of any change or increase in the amount of monthly rental. 15. Insular filed its Answer6 claiming that while the lease contract grants Sun Brothers the option to renew the lease by giving notice thereof to Insular at least ninety days before the expiration of the period. expressed its desire to exercise the option granted in the contract. that negotiation was the usual norm between the parties. petitioner understood it to mean that the renewal will be under the same terms and conditions. The respondent could have easily deleted this questioned renewal clause in P100. 1993 (Exh. 63-64.000. After trial on the merits. Sun to sign the same. in its letter to respondent dated May 22. petitioner’s only role was for its general manager.8 The dispositive portion of the assailed decision reads: _______________ 6 Id. the RTC rendered its decision.

p.000.‘c) ordering the respondent to pay herein petitioner the amount of 12 Court of Appeals (CA). p.17 Insular filed a motion for reconsideration18 which was denied by the CA in its Resolution dated October 10. 397. such subsequent contract should follow the terms and conditions of the original contract. THE EXERCISE ACTUAL AND TO OF JUDICIAL POWER OF ISSUES ENTAILS LEGALLY THE DUTY BY TO THE Insular’s improvements Brothers still have an appraised value. IT IS A JUDICIAL ABDICATION OF DUTY TO SIMPLY AND MERELY Page . 108. and ‘d) to pay the cost. 1996. the CA affirmed the decision of the trial court.000. CONTROVERSIES DECIDE UPON DEMANDABLE SUBMITTED B. p. 19.‛9 On June 1. Rollo.000. Court of Appeals. FAILS TO EXPRESS COURT IS THE TRUE INTENT TO OF THE THE THE LOWER MANDATED CONSIDER EXTRINSIC EVIDENCE PRESENTED AND THEN DECIDE WHAT THE TRUE INTENT IS.14 Millare vs.. applying the doctrine laid down in the cases of Ledesma vs. 11 Id. CONTRACT PARTIES.16 As regards the monthly rental. 2004 85 The Insular Life Assurance Company. 16 166 SCRA 577 (1988). BY THE VERY NATURE OF THIS CHALLENGE. Hernando. 65.’ ‚SO ORDERED. vs. 1994. the present petition for review anchored on the following grounds: A.00 after considering that Sun Brothers had shouldered the maintenance expenses _______________ SETTLE RIGHTS PARTIES. 13 Rollo. which value is considered by the CA in favor of Sun Brothers in the determination of the terms of the extended lease. 10 Original Record. the CA held that there was no merit to Insular’s testimony allegation of that the trial court acted month arbitrarily in fixing by the the Sun amount of the rent at P100. Insular filed a motion for reconsideration10 which the RTC denied in its Order dated July 18.00 a witness that since it considered introduced VOL. APRIL 28. Insular appealed to the CA. 14 121 SCRA 794 (1983). Court of Appeals on the building and paid real estate taxes as well as insurance premiums thereon. Ltd. 1994..11 Dissatisfied. WHERE A PARTY PUTS IN ISSUE IN HIS PLEADING THAT THE 323 9 Id.15 and Fernandez vs. 445.19 Hence. 428.00 as attorney’s fees.13 It reasoned that since the renewal clause to in the the terms latest and contract of Insular of the and Sun Brothers is silent as conditions subsequent contract. The CA added that the trial court arrived at the amount of P100. Javellana. p.12 In a Decision dated May 20. p. 15 151 SCRA 484 (151). 1996. 85 P20.

at least ninety days before the expiration of the period. that is. posits that the option to renew is its unilateral right effectively exercised by mere notice to Insular of the intention to extend the lease. (9) when the facts set forth in the petition as well as in the petitioner’s (10) absence main when of and the reply findings and briefs of are fact not are by disputed premised the by on the the on respondent. not just a particular word or two. pp. pp. It is a cardinal rule in contract interpretation that the ascertainment of the intention of the contracting parties is to be discharged by looking to the words they used to project that intention in their contract. to wit: (1) when the findings are grounded entirely on speculation.RULE THAT THE CONTRACT IS CLEAR AND MUST BE INTERPRETED AS SUCH. 20 Rollo. 118. absurd or impossible. present in this case. D. Court of Appeals the contending parties during the trial of the case considering that the findings of facts of the CA are conclusive and binding on the Court. C. Sun Brothers. p. surmises or conjectures. on the other hand. (7) when the findings are contrary to the trial court.23 Furthermore. (10) and (11) are 17 Rollo. 113-114. (4) when the judgment is based on a misapprehension of facts. Article 1374 of the Civil Code requires that the various _______________ 324 Page 86 . (6) when in making its findings the Court of Appeals went beyond the issues of the case. the issue herein is the real nature of the option to renew the lease under the contractual agreement of the parties.. 159. the Court is not a trier of facts and does not normally undertake the re-examination of the evidence presented by _______________ evidence contradicted evidence record. (5) when the findings of facts are conflicting. supposed EXEMPLARY DAMAGES AND ATTORNEY’S FEES. the Court had recognized several exceptions to this rule. PETITIONER IS ENTITLED TO AN AWARD OF MORAL AND 86 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Insular Life Assurance Company. It is a settled rule that in the exercise of the Supreme Court’s power of review. or its findings are contrary to the admissions of both the appellant and the appellee. not words standing alone. 22-23. 19 Id. and (11) when the Court of Appeals manifestly overlooked certain relevant facts not disputed by the parties. which. THE AMOUNT OF REASONABLE RENT IS DETERMINED ON THE BASIS OF EVIDENCE PRESENTED. (8) when the findings are conclusions without citation of specific evidence on which they are based. 18 CA Rollo. if properly considered. Insular insists that the option to renew is a bilateral agreement subject to the terms and conditions the parties may agree upon. vs. and words in context. without qualification as to monthly rental or term of the lease.21 However. all the words.20 Succinctly. Ltd. would justify a different conclusion. (2) when the inference made is manifestly mistaken. (3) when there is grave abuse of discretion. p.22 Exceptions (4).

1977 until 325 Page of the contract must be considered.). for a period of TEN (10) YEARS from the date provided for in Clause IX hereof.21 Pestaño vs. vs. APRIL 28. 317 SCRA 176. 310 (1999). VOL. ones that sense to which may the result true from all or of them taken of the Conformably. 271 (2000). Nokom 110 vs. 23 Limson vs. 1978 for a period of another 10 years. . Sumayang. 338 (1996). . de Dayot. Maria vs. 514 (1990). 22 Langkaan Realty Development. not merely the clause relating to the ‚option to renew. Inc. . 216 (2001). 357 (1998). from December 1. 346 SCRA 870. Triumph Lumber and Construction Corporation. Security Bank and Trust Company vs. Jr. ascertain meaning import III INSULAR expressly covenants that if on or before the expiration of the period of TWENTY (20) YEARS (covered by the original TEN (10) years period of the lease and the renewal still period to of TEN (10) the years hereinabove stipulated) TENANT desires occupy building. Commissioner between renewal provide: I the parties The but. 428. vs. 166 SCRA 577. . 336 549 SCRA (2000). 301 SCRA 537. Court of Appeals. 182 (1999). that the exercise of the options to renew the lease as herein stated shall be made by the TENANT in writing to INSULAR at least NINETY (90) DAYS before the expiration of the periods herein mentioned. Vda. the entirety INSULAR shall give the TENANT first priority to lease the building at the monthly rental and under such other terms and conditions as may be agreed upon by the parties at that time. 97. the Court finds it significant that the disputed contract of lease is not the first contract . Court of Appeals. All renewals shall be under the same terms and conditions hereinstated. 1958. Ltd. 87 INSULAR does hereby lease the abovementioned land and building unto the TENANT and the TENANT does hereby accept in lease from INSULAR the said land and building. (2000). Heirs of Severo Legaspi. China Banking Corporation vs. 305 SCRA 70. Sun.‛ After a careful examination of the records of the case. . in fact. . PROVIDED. Borromeo vs. 285 SCRA 351. . Court of Appeals. 587 (1988). with the original contract of lease. Lagrosa vs. 265 SCRA 327. HOWEVER. Court of Appeals.24 portions of which Revenue vs. renewable at the option of the TENANT for an additional period of TEN (10) YEARS. Sta. Bañas. 548 (1999). parties’ lessor-lessee relationship started January 29. vs. 74 (1999). National Labor of Relations Internal Commission. Fernandez vs. 312 SCRA 298. United Coconut Planters Bank. Embroidery and Garments Industries (Phil. 2004 87 The Insular Life Assurance Company. 347 SCRA 542. . Sr. Inc. disputed ‚option to renew‛ clause in the contract of lease. .. 357 SCRA 209. 879 (2000). 325 SCRA 259. Court of Appeals. 188 SCRA 508. 25 (Emphasis supplied) The first renewal of the lease contract was made on January 20. attributing to the doubtful jointly. vs. Court of Appeals. Court of Appeals stipulations of a contract shall be interpreted together. the third contract or all the second on contract.

1987. On July 31..... P 3. the monthly rental for the 2nd Five (5) years of the said 10-year period is estimated to be P30.. P 4........ during the first (5) years of the above 10-year period. all the other terms and conditions of the Contract of Lease dated 29 January 1958 remain in full force and effect.... assessments expiration of the period provided.00 Total Current Value ... prior to the expiration of the foregoing contract in November 1987..... SUN BROTHERS.......00 Improvements.5% per annum of the imputed value increment on the land compounded at 5% annually .....600..... 3) Except for the foregoing modification/amendment..00 exclusive of real estate taxes............ Court of Appeals the option of the Sun Brothers for an additional period of five years with the proviso that the exercise of the option to renew the lease shall be made by the tenant in writing to Insular at least ninety days before the that: 2) For the use and occupancy of the leased premises TENANT shall... 25 Id. pay in advance at the office of INSULAR..793.... The parties agreed that the lease was renewable at _______________ for a period of five (5) years using the current value of the leased property as base.......00 On the basis of the above current value...28 2. the rental shall be adjusted beginning on the sixth year of this lease with an effective increase equivalent to 6.. vs............... 1987. (d) _______________ insurance premiums of the leased properties shall be for the account of 326 Page the TENANT). 88 88 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Insular Life Assurance Company. other assessments and insurance premiums for the leased properties.... within the first five (5) days of every month a monthly rental of P24... expressed its 24 Original Record... an exchange of letters ensued between the contracting parties. Thereafter....002.. 188...............100.325....000. which by that time had added up to twenty years of lease. which current value is hereby agreed upon by the parties as follows: Land .. (b) basic monthly rental of P60...... as follows: 1.26 The contract further provided intention to renew the lease for a period of five years.... pp.November 30.00.500.. p.. taxes. (c) annual escalation rate of 10%.27 (Emphasis supplied) Thereafter..00 (All real exclusive estate of real other estate taxes and and insurance premiums.. 188-189.. in a letter dated July 15... Ltd... and.490... 1987.... INSULAR informed SUN BROTHERS that it was agreeable to the renewal of the lease subject to the following terms: (a) lease period from 01 December 1987 to 30 November 1992.. 697.

29 3. 27 Id.. realty taxes.‛ hence in a letter dated October 5..000.00.. 33 Id.000. other government assessments if any. (c) annual escalation rate of 10%. p. and an increase of 10% per annum for _______________ subsequently found the said terms to be ‚quite heavy. 428.000. p. The contract again stipulated that the lease was renewable at the option of the tenant for an additional five years provided the exercise of the option to renew the lease shall be made by the tenant in writing to Insular at least ninety days before the expiration of the period.00. APRIL 28. p. 195. 2004 89 The Insular Life Assurance Company. (b) annual escalation rate of 5% which is a new condition not in the old contract. 1987 INSULAR informed SUN BROTHERS that it was not amenable to the foregoing ‚compromise‛ terms. Court of Appeals insurance premiums. 258. 32 Id.00 monthly rental and yearly increase of 5%.32 Page . 1988. On December 10. and.000. Ltd. 28 Id. 31 Id. 196. 263. 34 Id.. 30 Ibid. 1987. 1992. 262. it offered the following ‚compromise‛ term: (a) basic monthly rental increase of 50% over the present monthly rental of P30. shall be for the account of SUN BROTHERS. 1987 until November 30. (d) insurance premiums.34 VOL. 1987.00 for the first year..00 is fair and reasonable in the 29 Id. other government assessments if any. 261. 259.00. which shall be for the account of SUN BROTHERS. shall be for the account of SUN BROTHERS. thereby making the new monthly rental to P45. p. other government assessments if any. p. with a monthly rental of P50. INSULAR informed SUN BROTHERS that it was agreeable to renewal of the lease subject to the following terms: (a) lease period from 01 December 1987 to 30 November 1992. SUN BROTHERS requested reconsideration 26 Id. vs. SUN BROTHERS acceded to the terms of INSULAR30 but The foregoing exchange of communications ultimately led to the Contract of Lease dated September 20. On November 20..5.000. and. p. p. (b) basic monthly rental of P50.33 6. which is the second renewed Contract of Lease or third contract of lease between the parties.000. It reasoned that the new basic rental rate of P60. 260. realty taxes. in addition to the insurance premiums. p.31 4.. 1987.. from December 1. 327 considering the present market value rates of other properties immediate vicinity. realty taxes. On November 27. The lease was for a period of five years. 89 and accept its new offer of P50.

SUN BROTHERS has the right to renew the lease for another period of five (5) years the without of any written condition notice for at the exercise ninety of the days option.37 2. 1992. 37 Id.. INSULAR rental of Brothers filed the petition for declaratory relief with the RTC. p. p. an exchange of letters once more transpired between the parties.39 VOL. 1992. On September 5. 198-199. 91 offered monthly P500.000. 1992. Court of Appeals the succeeding which years. 41 Id..00. APRIL 28. 1992. the explaining that the contract of lease granted SUN BROTHERS only the option 90 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Insular Life Assurance Company. pp. 1992. 168.90 4.. thus: 1. 2004 91 Page . 202.. all the other terms and conditions of the Contract of Lease dated 29 January 1958 remain in full force and effect. 38 Id.‛36 Prior to the expiration of the second renewal Contract of Lease in 1992. 36 Id. 266. under the provisions of the contract of lease.40 5. On May 22. before except giving least (90) November 30. SUN BROTHERS communicated to INSULAR its intention to renew the lease contract. 40 Id. 265.41 which apparently brought about an impasse by reason of which Sun premiums account Brothers. 199. expressed that. in a letter dated August 5..00 as monthly rental. SUN BROTHERS. 39 Id.35 contract provided that ‚except for the foregoing modification/amendment. p. Ltd. 428. INSULAR replied to the foregoing letter.38 3. More than a month later. On September to 1. quoting P100. p. 1992 and that the rental due INSULAR is the current 328 rental. SUN BROTHERS insisted that INSULAR’s consent is not necessary to the renewal of the lease and the monthly rental due is the current rental paid by it. p. especially on the amount of rentals to be paid. the renew the lease contract and not the right to dictate terms and conditions of the renewed contract.. In response a lease thereto period in a of letter one dated year June at a 10. Thus. _______________ 35 Id. p. 200.000. vs.. are exclusive for the of real of estate Sun taxes and insurance Again. SUN BROTHERS reiterated its position that it has validly exercised the option to renew the lease contract under the same terms and conditions by giving notice to INSULAR as provided in the lease contract.

the original contract of lease dictates the The cases of Ledesma vs. Court of Appeals. the courts may not read into it any other intention that would contradict its plain import. pp.44 a court. even the Supreme Court. or after the second contract of lease which was to expire November 30. Court of Appeals Clearly. Court of Appeals renewal contracts explicitly adopted all the other provisions of the original contract of lease dated January term of the lease. The contracting parties’ intent as can be gleaned from the original contract of lease and confirmed by their subsequent acts in the 1977 and 1987 renewal contracts. Ltd. relied upon by the lower courts. is not plausible. despite Sun the the Brothers to express Inc. the subsequent acts of the parties. the monthly rentals and other terms and conditions of the proposed renewal contract were agreed upon by the parties in said 1978 and 1987 renewed contracts of lease. dated ‚all 29 the other terms and conditions in full of the and Contract January 1958 remain force 42 Id. the lessee. midway through the negotiations in the face of a P500.. under renew‛ were ‚option 29. simply to avoid seeming hardships. the ‚option to renew‛ clause means simply that after the 20-year period of lease. 1958. Sun Brothers’ interpretation based solely on the renewal 92 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Insular Life Assurance Company. after Sun Brothers signified its intention renew lease 1987. find no application in the present case since the 1977 and 1987 _______________ interpretation of the renewal clause.‛42 and.000. therefore. was to constitute the renewal of the lease subject to terms and conditions to be agreed upon by the parties at the time of each renewal. has no right to make new contracts for the parties or ignore those already made by them. 196. Sun Brothers complied with clause acts. including the provision on contract renewals. clearly show that their understanding and interpretation of the clause in explicitly a provided of original contract of lease. Consequently.‛ The renewal contracts of 1978 and 1987 each contained the stipulation that except for the modification or amendment relating to the monthly rental and term of of the Lease lease.00 monthly rental pegged by Insular. Page . Thus. Millare vs.The Insular Life Assurance Company. 92 effect.43 The Court would be rewriting the the guise contract of lease of construction Sun the Brothers Court as As between we propounds held in Insular and to interpret it. vs. in this case. Furthermore. Javellana. provision in the original contract of lease and the contracting parties’ subsequent has Riviera Filipina. in pursuance thereof. 199. Sun Brothers did a volte face and suddenly insisted that it had a unilateral right to renew. Sun Brothers. Hernando and Fernandez vs. vs. except those that relate to the monthly rental and the clause under scrutiny completely ignoring the original contract of lease. vs. 1987. Court of Appeals. Neither abstract justice nor the rule of liberal construction justifies the creation of a contract for the 329 the terms of the original contract of lease on the option to renew until 1992 when. Ltd. ‚option to evidenced to renew‛ the by the is 1977 exchange that and which in of is letters between the in two the and contenders. is given ‚first priority to lease the building at the monthly rental and under such other terms and conditions as may be agreed upon by the parties at that time. When the language of the contract is explicit leaving no doubt as to the intention of the drafters thereof. series offers counter-offers on the monthly rental and the term of lease followed until the parties reached an agreement thereon. Under the original contract of lease.

00.47 was not proven by Sun Brothers to be biased and partial on their estimation of the fair rental value of the subject leased property. unconscionable. Court of Appeals.00 as of October 30. 43 German Marine Agencies. 44 380 SCRA 245 (2002). 45 Id. However. Court of Appeals In addition. can be considered actual or compensatory damages representing reasonable rental value or unrealized monthly income for Sun Brothers’ continued occupation and en_______________ 330 93 48 The contract of Winsome Development Corporation provided for the following monthly rental scheme: Page . the Court cannot validly impose said amount on Sun Brothers as monthly rental since it was not agreed upon by the parties.50 Based thereon.parties which they did not make themselves or the imposition upon one party to a contract of an obligation not assumed. where rental and damages. Insular pleads that the Court should fix the monthly rental at P500. starting December 1992. 428. 252 (1998).000. the Court finds the amount of P500. vs. Sun Brothers alleges that the said amount is unreasonable. 47 TSN. Ltd. other than its self-serving assertion. p.‛45 The Court will now discuss the merit of Insular’s claim for monthly VOL.000. Suffice it to state that courts may take judicial notice of the general increase in rentals of lease contract renewals much more with business establishments.00 as reasonable monthly rental. 1991. However. Inc.200 subject square leased meter property and which is almost located twice in property likewise 1993 involving an the size of the the Makati. 39 P2d 986. vs.000. of the Cuervo Appraisers.000. 46 Original Record. On the other hand. Insular presented the Contract of Lease it entered into with Winsome Development Corporation dated March 30. 263. Oliver Morales.000. 2004 93 The Insular Life Assurance Company. _______________ monthly rental for the first year. Insular submitted in evidence the Appraisal Report which estimated the fair rental value of the subject leased property at P700. Engr. p.49 especially in this case where the subject leased property covers a 4. 8. 180 Wash 347. Northwest Casualty Co.00 a month since 1992 or P6 Million a year. National Labor Relations Commission.48 Sun Brothers failed to demonstrate that this contract has been assailed in court or that the agreed monthly rental was found to be unconscionable. 287.51 But the amount of P500. It is not the province of the Court to make a contract for the parties or bind parties to one when no consensual agreement was entered into. 350 SCRA 629. Cruz vs.. Executive Vice President. 641 (2001). Inc.215 square meter prime property centrally located in a well-developed commercial district of the City of Makati. 1992. APRIL 28. citing Collins vs. 97 ALR 1235. was offered by Sun Brothers to substantiate its contention. was fixed at P600. if not.. 293 SCRA 239. no evidence.46 The testimony of the appraiser. October 6.00.

260 SCRA 645. 355 SCRA 29. established experience.‛ granted mere some speculation. is imposed. the familiar rule is that damages consisting of unrealized profits. delicts or quasi-delicts is breached. records disclose that in an Order dated April 30. Chua vs. Court of Appeals.. 622 (2002). for the regardless The govern of its source. be When held an obligation. the _______________ 331 Page joyment of the leased property. 301 SCRA 356. When the obligation is breached. or direct inference from known circumstances. 1998 to 30 Nov. 384 SCRA 105. Ltd.. the date of monthly of rentals or such this in consigned55 compensatory rate of 12% until should deducted herein from amount actual Ramos. 404 (2001).00—01 Dec. 49 Catungal vs. Ramnani vs. . There are two kinds of actual or compensatory damages: one is the loss of what a person already possesses. Inc. 2000 to 30 Nov. Court of Appeals 52 wherein the Court had enunciated the kinds of actual damages. the rate of interest. as follows: 1. . accordance with the ruling of this Court in Eastern Shipping Lines. LL and Company Development and Agro-Industrial Corporation vs. 2000 P939.. Court of Appeals. 1992 to 30 Nov. and it consists in the payment of a sum of money. International Corporate Book. 51 Barrera vs. 364 (1999). II.56 to wit: I.000. 1997 P759. 41 (2001). 656 (2001). thus: . 378 SCRA 612.263. p. Huang Chao Chun. Court of Appeals. Court of Appeals ‚Damages‛ determining measure recoverable damages. Pascual vs.000. 2002 (Original Record. 364 SCRA 385. 115 (2002). reference reasonably definite standard such as market value.54 The the to amount total Insular. Hao.00—01 Dec. conjecture. 389 SCRA 329. the contravenor can liable of damages.544. a loan or forbearance of money. are frequently not or to referred be but as rather ‚ganacias on by the frustradas‛ basis of to or ‚lucrum cessans. 1993 the trial court authorized Sun Brothers to make a consignation of its monthly rentals of P69. XVIII on of quasi-contracts. otherwise known as ‚The Charter of the City of Makati. This is in consonance with Producers Bank of the Philippines vs. surmise.00—01 Dec. 1994. 360 SCRA 645. In the latter instance. 1997 to 30 Nov. 333 (2002).00—01 Dec. vs. Lorenzo. law.53 In addition. 1993 P660.e. 50 The Municipality of Makati was converted into the City of Makati by virtue of Republic Act No. as well as the accrual thereof. Sabio vs. of finality of actual or compensatory damages due shall earn interest at the legal annum computed would from have decision payment actually been made. Civil Code provisions in under 94 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Insular Life Assurance Company.‛ which was approved on July 19. vs. i. 303). 94 damages per full granted Furthermore. Inc. Court of Appeals.75 starting the month of December 1992 while the case pends in the be trial court. Title the contracts.00—01 Dec. 1993 to 30 Nov.875. 1998 P853. 667 (1996). With regard particularly to an award of interest in the concept of actual and compensatory damages. and the other is the failure to receive as a benefit that which would have pertained to him x x x. i.000.e. Cuizon vs. 7854. .P600.

The Court cannot disregard this fact simply because disadvantageous party. where the demand is established with reasonable certainty. the rate of interest shall be 12% per annum to be computed from default. whether the case falls under paragraph 1 or paragraph 2. When an obligation. 1993. 95 is made judicially or extrajudicially (Art. an interest on the amount of damages awarded may be imposed at the discretion of the court at the rate of 6% per annum. Inc. 1169. this interim period being deemed to be by then an equivalent to a forbearance of credit. 115-118. the interest shall begin to run only from the date the judgment of the court is made (at which time the quantification of damages may be deemed to have been reasonably ascertained). the Court takes exception from the CA’s opinion that the VOL.e. 96 332 Page reasonable certainty. 3. be on the amount finally adjudged.. 53 Id. the rate of legal interest. In the absence of stipulation. APRIL 28. The fact that Sun Brothers had shouldered maintenance expenses on the building and paid real estate taxes as well as insurance premiums is inconsequential and immaterial in it the later in fixing the of rent.claim 52 365 SCRA 326 (2001). i. The actual base for the computation of legal interest shall. 95-97. Inc. the The improvements rental one in the introduced contracts and of when the lease Sun payment of expenses. (Emphasis supplied)57 Moreover. when shall or be adjudged the on unliquidated can be claims or with damages except until demand established improvements introduced by Sun Brothers should be considered in the latter’s favor in considering the terms of the rent. Ltd. Accordingly.. Asociacion de Agricultores de Talisay-Silay. 428. No interest. 56 234 SCRA 78 (1994). p.268. 337. 2. pp. pp. Furthermore. vs. taxes and premiums have always been excluded determination becomes monthly to between the parties. Id.. the interest due shall itself earn legal interest from the time it is judicially demanded. however. from judicial or extrajudicial demand under and subject to the provisions of Article 1169 of the Civil Code. is breached.When the judgment of the court awarding a sum of money becomes final and executory. 247 SCRA 361. Court of Appeals interest due should be that which may have been stipulated in writing.. _______________ 57 Id. especially Brothers voluntarily assumed the obligation in the original contract. 2004 95 The Insular Life Assurance Company. 55 As of May 13. not constituting a loan or forbearance of money. citing Talisay-Silay Milling Co. Sun Brothers has consigned P417. the interest shall begin to run from the time the .. 107. p. in any case. Civil Code) but when such certainty cannot be so reasonably established at the time the demand is made. vs. above. 381 (1995).50 for monthly rentals from December 1992 to May 1993. 54 Original Record. shall be 12% per annum from such finality until its satisfaction..

indicated that it was well-aware of the contractual stipulation that after a twenty-year period of lease. Civil Code. bad of faith the lease the in defendant the in fraudulent. LBC Express. experience physical anguish. 649 (2001). having suffering. 1958 when the original contract of lease was executed. CV No. Court of Appeals its interest by reason of an unjustified act of the other party. 428. Court of Appeals As to moral damages. 46987 is REVERSED and SET ASIDE.59 1992. serious corporation has no feelings. anxiety. Ltd. the right to renew the lease was subject to such terms and conditions that the parties may mutually agree upon at the time. Rubber and Plastic Corp. the a Sun court wanton. of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. 369 SCRA 629. Brothers for and may award was the in damages oppressive. an award of exemplary damages in the amount of P500. judgment is rendered ordering respondent Sun Brothers and Company to pay petitioner Insular Life contract the oppressively took insisted that it had a unilateral right to renew to lease thereby resulting impasse between parties and Sun Brothers advantage of and used as a basis for instituting the proceedings for declaratory relief. 607 (1994). APRIL 28. as expressly provided for in the original contract of lease.R. vs.000.00 is reasonable in view of the time it has taken this case to be resolved.96 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED The Insular Life Assurance Company. Consequently.000. therefore. has that been moral an a defamed damages artificial Sun Brothers. although its prior actions since January 29.60 In the present case. 2004 97 The Insular Life Assurance Company. Insular was constrained to engage the services of counsel and to incur expenses of litigation in order to protect its interest to the subject property against Sun Brothers’ utterly unfounded insistence on an alleged unilateral right to renew the lease. Philipp Brothers Oceanic.58 As to Insular’s plea for exemplary damages. 260 SCRA 714. Page 333 .. Acme Shoe.61 WHEREFORE. Ltd. favor of only and The a in reputation rule is corporation. attorney’s fees may be awarded not only when exemplary damages is awarded but also when a party is compelled to litigate or to incur expenses to protect _______________ 58 National Power Corporation vs. Court of Appeals. dated May 20. the Court finds the same meritorious. it cannot. evident renewal in an In contracts if or when and quasi-contracts. Insular’s prayer that moral damages not less than P5 Million by can person be awarded not and be because is granted in its name tenable. vs. vs. vs. Ltd. 14 (2001). the assailed Decision. exemplary reckless. legal fright. 97 Being existence mental contemplation. third malevolent course negotiations wantonly which VOL. 362 SCRA 1. The award of P250. no emotions. wounded feelings or moral shock or social humiliation. no senses.. Court of Appeals. 59 Article 2232. Inc. 722 (1996).00 is in order by way of example and correction for the public good and also to serve as a deterrent to the commission of similar misdeeds by others. spanning more than three decades. Court of Appeals. not Under Article 2208 of the Civil Code. vs. 236 SCRA 602. Inc. In lieu thereof. Hanil Development Co. 1996. which can be suffered only by one having a nervous system. acted of it in manner.

(3) In criminal cases of malicious prosecution against the plaintiff._______________ In all cases. attorney’s Thousand Pesos (P250.00) petitioner monthly. Court of Appeals. of In the absence than of stipulation. ordered Hundred of sum In to Two interest at the legal rate of 12% per annum computed from the date of this Sun decision Brothers in addition. evident just bad faith in 98 SUPREME COURT REPORTS ANNOTATED People vs. pay Thousand Hundred respondent exemplary Company fees petitioner (6) In actions for legal support. Ching Sen Ben vs. 60 ART. No. 314 SCRA 762. (11) In any other case where the court deems it just and equitable that attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation should be recovered. SO ORDERED.00). other judicial recovered.000. laborers and skilled workers. Sr. (10) When at least double judicial costs are awarded. (9) In crime. November 11.000. finality indemnity under workmen’s compensation and of compensatory full payment is Five the of in damages thereof. The consigned deducted from the total amount of actual or compensatory damages due. and Tinga. 147800.000. Ramos. Teofilo C. 2208. Layugan Assurance Hundred unrealized amount of Company. Double costs against private respondent.R. (5) Where to the defendant the acted ’s in gross plainly and valid. (4) In case of a clearly unfounded civil action or proceeding against the plaintiff. Judgment reversed and set aside. 61 United Coconut Planters Bank vs. 1992 until respondent vacates the leased premises. Page 334 . Quisumbing. G. 415 SCRA 596. costs. Furthermore. Callejo. satisfy plaintiff and demandable Million trial December 1. 773 (1999). Puno (Chairman). a separate civil action to recover civil liability arising from a damages and amount (P500. attorney’s cannot be fees and expenses except: litigation. 98 (1) When exemplary damages are awarded. (8) In actions for employer’s liability laws.00). JJ. the attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation must be reasonable. (2) When the defendant’s act or omission has compelled the plaintiff to litigate with third persons or to incur expenses to protect his interest. Thousand monthly monthly such Ltd. (7) In actions for the recovery of wages of household helpers. 2003. Pesos income rentals actual or until and the actual of damages or with in P6 the the amount a court due of year shall shall Five the from be earn private Pesos Fifty (P500. representing refusing claim. concur..

Court of Appeals.Note. vs. vs. (University Physicians Services. 324 SCRA 52 [2000]) [The Insular Life Assurance Company. Inc. Court of Appeals. Ltd.—In the construction and interpretation of a contract. the intention of the parties must be sought. 428 SCRA 79(2004)] Page 335 .

Page 336 .

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