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Evidence Part II

II.

WHAT NEED NOT BE PROVED A. RULE 129, SECTIONS 1-4; RULE 129 WHAT NEED NOT BE PROVED SECTION 1. Judicial notice, when mandatory. – A court shall take judicial notice, without the introduction of evidence, of the existence and territorial extent of states, their political history, forms of government and symbols of nationality, the law of nations, the admiralty and maritime courts of the world and their seals, the political constitution and history of the Philippines, the official acts of the legislative, executive and judicial departments of the Philippines, the laws of nature, the measure of time, and the geographical divisions. (1a) SECTION 2. Judicial notice, when discretionary. – A court may take judicial notice of matters which are of public knowledge, or are capable of unquestionable demonstration, or ought to be known to judges because of their judicial functions. (1a) SECTION 3. Judicial notice, when hearing necessary. – During the trial, the court, on its own initiative, or on the request of a party, may announce its intention to take judicial notice of any matter and allow the parties to be heard thereon. After trial, and before judgment or on appeal, the proper court, on its own initiative or on request of a party, may take judicial notice of any matter and allow the parties to be heard thereon if such matter is decisive of a material issue in the case. (n) SECTION 4. Judicial Admissions. – An admission, verbal or written, made by a party in the course of the proceedings in the same case, does not require proof. The admission may be contradicted only by

showing that it was made through palpable mistake or that no such admission was made. (2a) RULE 10, SECTION 8 SECTION 8. Effect of amended pleadings. An amended pleading supersedes the pleading that it amends. However, admissions in superseded pleadings may be received in evidence against the pleader; and claims or defenses alleged therein not incorporated in the amended pleading shall be deemed waived. CASES: 1. JUDICIAL NOTICE City of Manila vs. Garcia 19 SCRA 413 (1967) Judicial Notice FACTS: Finding that it was necessary to expand the school grounds of Epifanio de los Santos Elementary School, Manila‘s City Engineer, pursuant to the Mayor‘s directive, ordered the illegal occupants/squatters (defendants) to vacate the property contiguous to the school. The defendants refused to vacate, thus, prompting the City of Manila to file a suit to recover possession over the land. The Court of First Instance (CFI) of Manila favored the plaintiff. Consequently, the squatters appealed and questioned the lower court‘s finding that the city needs the premises for s chool purposes. The city‘s evidence on this point was the certification of the Chairman Committee on Appropriations of the Municipal Board. The certification recites that the amount of P100,000 had been set aside in Ordinance 4566, the 1962-63 Manila City Budget, for the construction of an additional building of the elementary school. The said document was originally deemed inadmissible, but was, subsequently, admitted into evidence by the lower court. Hence, the defendants appealed. ISSUE: Whether or not the CFI of Manila had properly found that the City of Manila needs the premises for school purposes (considering that it had a contradictory stance regarding the admissibility of the evidence of the City on this point).

RULING: The CFI of Manila properly found that the city needs the premises for school purposes. It is beyond debate that a court of justice may alter its ruling while the case is within its power, to make it conformable to law and justice. Such was done here. The defendants‘ remedy was to bring the attention of the court to its contradictory stance. Not having done so, the Supreme Court will not reopen the case solely for this purpose. Anyway, elimination of the certification as evidence would not benefit the defendants. For in reversing his stand, the trial judge could have well taken – because he was duty bound to take judicial notice of Ordinance 4566. The reason being that the city charter of Manila requires that all courts sitting therein to take judicial notice of all ordinances passed by the municipal board of Manila. By: Aaron Roi B Riturban

Baguio vs. . Vda de Jalagat 42 SCRA 337 (1971) Judicial Notice

FACTS: GABRIEL BAGUIO filed for the quieting of title to real property against TEOFILA JALAGAT and her minor children with the Court of First Instance (CFI) of Misamis Oriental. The Jalagats filed a motion to dismiss on the ground that the present complaint is barred by a previous judgment rendered by the same court. The previous case involved practically the same property, the same cause of action, and the same parties, with Melecio Jalagat (Teofila‘s deceased husband and predecessor in interest) as the defendant. The previous case was terminated with the court dismissing Baguio‘s complaint. Acting on the motion and taking judicial notice of its previous judgment, the lower court dismissed the present complaint on the ground of res judicata. Consequently, Baguio appealed the order of dismissal. He claimed that for the ground of res judicata to suffice as a basis for dismissal it must be apparent on the face of the complaint.

ISSUE: Whether or not the CFI of Misamis Oriental was correct in finding that there was res judicata by taking judicial notice of its previous judgment.

RULING: THE CFI OF MISAMIS ORIENTAL WAS CORRECT IN TAKING JUDICIAL OF ITS PREVIOUS JUDGMENT. It ought to be clear even to the appellant that under the circumstances, the lower court certainly could take judicial notice of the finality of judgment in a case that was previously pending and thereafter decided by it. That was all that was done by the lower court in decreeing the dismissal. Certainly, such an order is not contrary to law. The Supreme Court quoted Chief Justice Morgan, who said: ―Courts have also taken judicial notice of previous cases

Gabriel appealed to the Supreme Court to question the dismissal of his second petition. his heirs had a new certificate of title registered in their names. the court dismissed his second petition on the ground of res judicata. He claimed that the lower court should have not dismissed his first petition for failure to prosecute because ―no ‗parole‘ evidence need be taken to support it. After Zeferino died.to determine whether or not the case pending is a moot one or whether or not the previous ruling is applicable in the case under consideration. Arroyo 14 SCRA 549 (1965) Judicial Notice FACTS: ZEFERINO ARROYO and GABRIEL PRIETO were registered owners of adjoining lots in Camarines Sur. Thereafter. However. They.‖ By: Aaron Roi B Riturban Prieto vs. therefore. and was less in area by 157 square meters. his petition was dismissed for failure to prosecute. Gabriel filed a second petition containing similar allegations. the matters therein alleged being part of the records land registration proceedings. He insisted that there was no res judicata since the dismissal of his first petition was erroneous. Hence. filed a petition for the correction of the said description in their titles. As expected. Gabriel filed a petition to annul the order granting the correction claiming that the 157 square meters were unduly taken from his lot. Subsequently. the heirs discovered that the technical description set forth in their transfer certificate of title and in the original certificate of title did not conform with that embodied in the decision of the land registration court (which registered the land in Zeferino‘s name). the court issued an order directing the correction of the technical description of the land covered by their title. Thus.‖ . which were well within the judicial notice and cognizance of the court.

courts are not authorized to take judicial notice. making the dismissal for failure to prosecute erroneous. thus. RULING: THE CFI OF CAMARINES SUR WAS CORRECT IN NOT TAKING JUDICIAL NOTICE OF THE RECORDS THE LAND REGISTRATION PROCEEDINGS. leaving real and personal properties in the Philippines. even when such cases have been tried or are pending in the same court. died intestate. the dismissal on the ground of res judicata must be sustained. As a general rule. Sy-Gonzales 167 SCRA 736 (1988) Judicial Notice FACTS: Sy Kiat.ISSUE: Whether or not the Court of First Instance (CFI) of Camarines Sur (in dismissing the first petition of Gabriel) erred in not taking judicial notice of the parts of the records of the land registration proceedings that would have supported Gabriel‘s allegations. a Chinese national. of the contents of other cases. For failing to do so in the appropriate time. in the adjudication of the cases pending before them. he should have presented the proper request or manifestation to that effect. AIDA SY-GONZALES and the other children of Sy with . By: Aaron Roi B Riturban Yao-Kee vs. the dismissal of the first petition is now valid and binding on him. if Gabriel really wanted the court to take judicial notice of such records. Thus. and notwithstanding the fact that both cases may have been tried or actually pending before the same judge. Besides.

Yao still failed to show that the law assumed to recognized in Sy Joc Lieng case (wherein the marriage was celebrated in 1847) was still applicable during the time of her marriage to Sy. Under the Philippine jurisprudence. Yao filed a petition for review with the Supreme Court claiming that the CA erred in holding that the validity of the foreign marriage between Yao and Sy had not been proven. thus. she has failed to prove the Chinese laws on marriage that would show the validity of her marriage to Sy. Yao cannot rely on a the case of Sy Joc Lieng v. They must be alleged and proved as any other fact. On this point.Asuncion Gillego filed a petition for the settlement of his estate. RULING: COURTS CANNOT TAKE JUDICIAL NOTICE OF FOREIGN LAWS. which took place 84 years later. and (2) the alleged foreign marriage by convincing evidence. Yao claimed that the CA should have taken judicial notice of the Chinese laws on marriage which show the validity of her marriage to Sy. Even assuming for the sake of argument that the court did take judicial notice of Chinese laws or customs on foreign marriages in that case. Chinese laws on marriage). Court of Appeals 196 SCRA 650 (1991) Judicial Notice . to establish a valid foreign marriage two things must be proven: (1) the existence of the foreign law as a question of fact. Hence. 137 (1910)) to prove her case. ISSUE: Whether or not the CA should take judicial notice of foreign laws (i. but the Court of Appeals (CA) reversed the lower court‘s decision and held that the petitioner‘s and Yao‘s children were all of illegitimate status. The probate court sustained the validity of Yao‘s marriage to Sy. The CA ruled that the marriage between Yao and Sy was not proven to be valid under the Chinese laws. Well-established is the rule that Philippine courts cannot take judicial notice of foreign laws or customs.e. The ruling that case did not show that the court took judicial notice of Chinese laws on marriages. the CA was correct in considering that the validity of the marriage between Yao and Sy has not been established. Hence. YAO KEE filed her opposition to the petition claiming that she is the legitimate wife of Sy. Sy Quia (16 Phil. relieving Yao of her duty of proving the validity of her marriage under Chinese laws. By: Aaron Roi B Riturban Tabuena vs. To support this contention. Though Yao may have established the fact of marriage.

The trial court rejected his defense that the subject of the sale was a different lot and that he was the absolute owner of the said property by virtue of the inheritance he acquired from his deceased parent.‖ and ―C‖ were marked at pre-trial but this was only for identifying them and not for making a formal offer. & ―C‘ which had been marked but not formally offered in evidence by Tabernilla. It is true that Exhibits ―A. After trial. rejecting therein his claim that the trial court erred in taking cognizance of Exhibits ―A‖. she was supposedly allowed by Tabernilla to remain in the said lot provided she paid the realty taxes on the property which she did do so. it was found that the lot was sold by Juan Peralta. meters in Makato. Upon Tabernilla‘s return to the Philippines in 1934. The Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the trial court. It is during the trial that the party presenting the marked evidence decides whether to offer the evidence or .‖ ―B. an action for recovery of ownership was filed by the estate of Alfredo Tabernilla against Jose Tabuena. in 1926 to Tabernilla while they were in the United States. ―B‖. She remained on the lot until her death and. the court ordered Tabuena to return the property to Tabernilla. This complaint was filed after a demand for Tabuena to vacate was made. The mere fact that a particular document is marked as an exhibit does not mean it has thereby already been offered as part of the evidence of a party. mother of Juan Peralta acting upon Juan‘s instructions conveyed the land to Tabernilla. Upon her request. At the trial. Damasa Timtiman. the property was taken possession by Tabuena.FACTS: The subject of the dispute is a parcel of residential land of about 440 sq. thereafter. ISSUE(S): (1) Whether or not it was proper for the CA and trial court properly took cognizance of the exhibits even if they were not formally offered during trial? (2) Whether or not the trial court erred in taking judicial notice of Tabuena‘s testimony in a case it had previously heard which was closely connected with the case before it? RULING: The SC reversed the decision and ruled in favor of Tabuena. Aklan. Jr. (1) No. In 1973.

it applied the exception that ―in the absence of objection. wherein the court ruled that evidence even if not offered can be admitted against the adverse party if: first. 1327. ―courts are not authorized to take judicial notice in the adjudication of cases pending before them of the contents of the records of other cases. it has been duly identified by testimony duly recorded and second. were not established in this case. The Court of Appeals conceded that as a general rule.‖ or ―at the request or with the consent of the parties.‖ ―with the knowledge of the opposing party. In this case. The documents were indeed testified to but there was no recital of its contents having been read into the records. it has itself been incorporated in the records of the case.not. even when such events have been tried or are pending in the same court. these requirements had not been satisfied. Thus. and notwithstanding the fact that both cases may have been heard or are actually pending before the same judge. such documents cannot be considered evidence. Napat-a. In case they don‘t. These conditions however.‖ the case is clearly referred to or ―the original or part of the records of the case are actually withdrawn from the archives‖ and admitted as part of the record of the case then pending. (2) Yes. nor can they be given any evidentiary value. the said act by the trial court was improper. An exception was given in People vs. Tabuena was completely unaware that the court had taken judicial notice of Civil Case no. By: Frank John Abdon .‖ Nevertheless.

To support his claim that they were lovers. After three days. He admitted having had sex with her and that they indeed stayed in Sunset Gardens and in Edward‘s Subdivision. Complainant Mia Taha alleged that Godoy. but it was because they were lovers and that Mia had consented to their having sex. 1994 in her cousin‘s boarding house wherein upon entering the back door. he presented two letters supposedly delivered to him in the provincial jail while he was detained by Mia‘s cousin Lorna. The next day. she was not able to resist. Godoy came by their house and asked the permission of her parents if she can join him in soliciting funds. who was charged in two separate informations with rape and another for kidnapping with serious illegal detention. Godoy pointed a knife at her. It was after Mia‘s return that her parents accompanied her to a medico-legal which found lacerations in her vagina concluding that ―she just had sexual intercourse. a knife was pointed at her neck. Godoy 250 SCRA 676 (1995) Judicial Notice FACTS: This is an automatic review of the decision of the RTC in view of the death sentence imposed upon Danny Godoy. As Godoy removed her panties and brought out his penis to rape her. During this time. Godoy denied that he raped Mia Taha. The delivery of the letter was denied by Lorna but the defense presented the provincial jail guard on duty on the supposed date of the delivery and testified that indeed Lorna had visited Godoy on said date. She was later released by Godoy after a certain Naem interceded and only after her parents agreed to settle the case. they transferred to Edward‘s subdivision where she was kept in a lodging house and was again raped. Palawan National School (PNS). As such. her Physics Teacher and a married man raped her first on Jan.People vs. 21. There Mia explained that it was her parents who forced her to testify against him. since Mia was a candidate for Ms. Mia‘s parents allowed her to go with Godoy and she was allegedly brought to the Sunset Garden Motel where she was repeatedly raped again. Several witnesses were also . a police blotter had already been placed for the missing Mia.‖ She and her mother Helen went to the police and executed sworn statements stating that the accused Godoy had raped and abducted Mia.

b) the testimony of the complainant must be scrutinized with extreme caution. the claim of the complainant of having been threatened appears to be a common testimonial expedient and face-saving subterfuge. and c) that the evidence for the prosecution must stand or fall on its own merits and cannot be allowed to draw strength from the weakness of the evidence for the defense. ISSUE: Whether or not the prosecution was able to prove beyond reasonable doubt the guilt of the accused RULING: The Supreme Court acquitted Danny Godoy . Three guiding principles in the appellate review of the evidence of the prosecution for the crime of rape. the Supreme Court said that it is not unaware that in rape cases. Any breath of scandal which brings dishonor to their character humiliates their entire families. though innocent. In taking judicial notice. Great caution is observed so that their reputations shall remain untainted. it must be borne in mind that it is an accusation easy to be made. But it had not been duly corroborated by other evidence nor proved that the accused indeed always carried a knife. Mia claimed that the appellant always carried a knife but it was never explained how she was threatened with the same in such a manner that she was allegedly always cowed into giving in to his innumerable sexual demands. namely: a) while rape is a most detestable crime. The SC also takes judicial cognizance of the fact that in rural areas (such as in Palawan) young ladies are strictly required to act with circumspection and prudence.presented including two former teachers of Mia who knew the handwriting on the two said letters as belonging to Mia having been their former student and where thus familiar with her handwriting particularly those made in her test papers. Other witnesses were presented by the defense attesting that they saw the two together in a manner that was affectionate and cordial. but harder to be defended by the party accused. hard to be proved. prior to the said ―kidnapping‖ and even during such. It could precisely be that complainant‘s mother wanted to save .

and in an effort to conceal her daughter‘s indiscretion and escape wagging tongues of their small rural community.491. The CA affirmed the CTA. The CTA dismissed BPI‘s petition on the ground that petitioner failed to present as evidence its Corporate Annual ITR for 1990 to establish the fact that BPI had not yet credited the amount of P297. BPI‘s 1989 Income Tax Return (ITR) shows that it had a total refundable amount of P297. urges the Supreme Court not to do so. BPI filed a petition for review with the CTA. By: Frank John Abdon BPI-Savings vs. 1990. seeking the refund of the amount of P112. 4897 involving its claim for refund for the year 1990 wherein the Tax Court held that ―petitioner suffered a net loss for the taxable year 1990. However.492.00 being claimed as tax refund in this present controversy. Without waiting for the CIR to act on the claim for refund.00 representing BPI‘s tax withheld for the year 1989. Hence.491.492 inclusive of the P112.491. this Petition. BPI filed a Motion for Reconsideration which was denied by the CTA.00.491.492.‖ Respondent.00 will be applied as tax credit to the succeeding taxable year.00 to its 1990 income tax liability. On October 11. however. Court of Tax Appeals 330 SCRA 507 (2000) Judicial Notice FACTS: This case involves a claim for tax refund in the amount of P112. she had to weave the scenario of this rape drama. BPI declared in the same 1989 ITR that the said total refundable amount of P297. Before the Supreme Court. the petitioner called the attention of the Court to a Decision rendered by the Tax Court in CTA Case No.00 with the Commissioner of Internal Revenue (CIR) alleging that it did not apply the 1989 refundable amount to its 1990 Annual ITR or other tax liabilities due to the alleged business losses it incurred for the same year.face in the community where everybody knows everybody else. . BPI filed a written claim for refund in the amount of P112.

even when such cases have been tried or are pending in the same court.000. Guerrero sought payment of damages allegedly for (1) illegally withheld taxes charged against interests on his checking account with the Bank. that by stipulation Guerrero’s account is governed by New York law and this law does not permit any of Guerrero’s claims except actual damages. 4897 was attached to the Petition for Review filed before this Court. Indeed. respondents do not claim at all that the said Decision was fraudulent or nonexistent.ISSUE: Whether or not the Court may take judicial notice of the Decision by the CTA in deciding the present case? RULING: AS A RULE. GUERRERO FACTS: - - On May 17. respondent Guerrero filed a complaint for damages against petitioner Bank with the RTC of Manila.that petitioner suffered a net loss in 1990 – the same way that it refused to controvert the same fact established by petitioner‘s other documentary exhibits. 1994. "courts are not authorized to take judicial notice of the contents of the records of other cases. the Court notes that a copy of the Decision in CTA Case No. the Bank filed a Motion for Partial Summary Judgment seeking the dismissal of Guerrero‘s claims for consequential. they do not even dispute the contents of the said Decision. 1995. In this case. Subsequently.00 due to signature verification problems. Significantly. . This merely showed the weakness of the respondent‘s case because they did not take steps to prove that BPI did not suffer any loss in 1990. claiming merely that the Court cannot take judicial notice thereof. temperate. MANUFACTURERS HANOVER TRUST CO. the Bank filed its Answer alleging. and/or CHEMICAL BANK vs. 4897 is not the sole basis of petitioner‘s case. It is merely one more bit of information showing that the petitioner did not use its 1989 refund to pay its taxes for 1990. On September 1. (2) a returned check worth US$18. Section 2. Rule 129 provides that courts may take judicial notice of matters ought to be known to judges because of their judicial functions. inter alia. moral and exemplary damages as well as attorney‘s fees on the same ground alleged in its Answer. The Decision in CTA Case No. and notwithstanding the fact that both cases may have been heard or are actually pending before the same judge. Guerrero amended his complaint on April 18." Be that as it may. RAFAEL MA. 1995. Respondents opted not to assail the fact appearing therein . nominal. and (3) unauthorized conversion of his account.

a New York attorney. WHICH PROVES FOREIGN LAW AS A FACT. - RULING: The petition is devoid of merit. The Court of Appeals considered the New York law and jurisprudence as public documents defined in Section 19. ISSUE: WON CA erred in HOLDING THAT [THE BANK’S] AFFIDAVIT. The Philippine Consular Office in New York authenticated the Walden affidavit. The RTC denied the Bank‘s Motion for Partial Summary Judgment and its motion for reconsideration. Hence. The affidavit of Alyssa Walden. temperate. CA ruled that the Walden affidavit does not serve as proof of the New York law and jurisprudence relied on by the Bank to support its motion. supported the Bank’s Motion for Partial Summary Judgment. Guerrero opposed the motion. it was entitled to use the Walden affidavit to prove that the stipulated foreign law bars the claims for consequential. nominal and exemplary damages and attorney‘s fees. The Bank filed a petition for certiorari and prohibition with the Court of Appeals assailing the RTC Orders. moral. outright dismissal by summary judgment of these claims is warranted. IS "HEARSAY" AND THEREBY ‘CANNOT SERVE AS PROOF OF THE NEW YORK LAW RELIED UPON BY PETITIONERS IN THEIR MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT. the instant petition. Alyssa Walden’s affidavit ("Walden affidavit" for brevity) stated that Guerrero’s New York bank account stipulated that the governing law is New York law and that this law bars all of Guerrero’s claims except actual damages.- - - The Bank contended that the trial should be limited to the issue of actual damages. It also argues that since Guerrero did not submit any opposing affidavit to refute the facts contained in the Walden affidavit. Consequently. Rule 132 of the Rules on Evidence. he failed to show the need for a trial on his claims for damages other than actual. . The Court of Appeals dismissed the petition and the MR was also denied. Arguments: The Bank argues that in moving for partial summary judgment.

sham or fictitious.00 due to signature verification problems. except the amount of damages. Guerrero’s complaint before the RTC contains a statement of the ultimate facts on which he relies for his claim for damages. admissions. Apparently. the Bank‘s motion for partial summary judgment as supported by the Walden affidavit does not demonstrate that Guerrero‘s claims are sham. they must be alleged and proven. There can be no summary judgment where questions of fact are in issue or where material allegations of the pleadings are in dispute. Like any other fact. In such event. as shown by affidavits. the crucial question is: are the issues raised in the pleadings genuine. the conflicting allegations as to whether New York law or Philippine law applies to Guerrero’s claims present a clear dispute on material allegations which can be resolved only by a trial on the merits." In its Answer. Rule 34 of the old Rules of Court A court may grant a summary judgment to settle expeditiously a case if. depositions or admissions accompanying the motion? A genuine issue means an issue of fact which calls for the presentation of evidence as distinguished from an issue which is fictitious or contrived so as not to constitute a genuine issue for trial. the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law. depositions.000. the Walden affidavit shows that the facts and material allegations as pleaded by the parties are disputed and there are substantial triable issues necessitating a formal trial. He is seeking damages for what he asserts as "illegally withheld taxes charged against interests on his checking account with the Bank. Certainly.- - - - The Bank filed its motion for partial summary judgment pursuant to Section 2. However. the court can determine whether there are genuine issues in a case based merely on the affidavits or counter-affidavits submitted by the parties to the court. a returned check worth US$18. In a motion for summary judgment. Foreign laws are not a matter of judicial notice. facts are asserted in Guerrero’s complaint while specific denials and affirmative defenses are set out in the Bank’s answer. and affidavits that no important issues of fact are involved. on motion of either party. and unauthorized conversion of his account. On the contrary. True. as correctly ruled by the Court of Appeals. fictitious or contrived. the Bank set up its defense that the agreed foreign law to govern their contractual relation bars the recovery of damages other than actual. there appears from the pleadings. . A perusal of the parties’ respective pleadings would show that there are genuine issues of fact that necessitate formal trial. The resolution of whether a foreign law allows only the recovery of actual damages is a question of fact as far as the trial court is concerned since foreign laws do not prove themselves in our courts.

Yet. However. court decisions cited in the Walden affidavit. if the record is not kept in the Philippines. the record of public documents of a sovereign authority or tribunal may be proved by (1) an official publication thereof or (2) a copy attested by the officer having the legal custody thereof. These cases involved attorneys testifying in open court during the trial in the Philippines and quoting the particular foreign laws sought to be established. Thus.Next. SC held that The Bank cannot rely on these cases to support its cause. the Walden affidavit was taken abroad ex parte and the affiant never testified in open court. the pertinent provision of Section 3.S. While the Bank attached copies of some of the U.On the other hand. and authenticated by the seal of his office.S. The citations in the Walden affidavit of various U. The certificate may be issued by any of the authorized Philippine embassy or consular officials stationed in the foreign country in which the record is kept.- Under Section 24 of Rule 132. or a specific part thereof. However. in substance. . Rule 35 of the old Rules of Court did not make the submission of an opposing . and must be under the official seal of the attesting officer. court decisions do not constitute proof of the official records or decisions of the U. The Walden affidavit cannot be considered as proof of New York law on damages not only because it is self-serving but also because it does not state the specific New York law on damages.The W alden affidavit states conclusions from the affiant‘s personal interpretation and opinion of the facts of the case vis a vis the alleged laws and jurisprudence without citing any law in particular. what New York law and jurisprudence are on the matters at issue. .The Bank‘s intention in presenting the Walden affidavit is to prove New York law and jurisprudence. that the copy is a correct copy of the original. . . Such official publication or copy must be accompanied.Certain exceptions to this rule were recognized in some cases. but has not proved. the Bank has only alleged. as the case may be. the Walden affidavit did not prove the current state of New York law and jurisprudence. the Bank makes much of Guerrero‘s failure to submit an opposing affidavit to the Walden affidavit. with a certificate that the attesting officer has the legal custody thereof. The attestation must state. . these copies do not comply with Section 24 of Rule 132 on proof of official records or decisions of foreign courts. courts. because of the failure to comply with Section 24 of Rule 132 on how to prove a foreign law and decisions of foreign courts.S.

There is a need to determine by presentation of evidence in a regular trial if the Bank is guilty of any wrongdoing and if it is liable for damages under the applicable laws. 136804.Moreover. . . the veracity of the statements in the Walden affidavit. . expressly or impliedly. No. It is axiomatic that the term "may" as used in remedial law. Guerrero did not admit. the courts a quo correctly denied the Bank‘s motion for partial summary judgment.Certainly. . although he did not present an opposing affidavit.There being substantial triable issues between the parties.affidavit mandatory. . as there was no need for one. FIRST DIVISION [G. the Bank has the burden of clearly demonstrating the absence of any genuine issue of fact and that any doubt as to the existence of such issue is resolved against the movant. it would have been redundant and pointless for Guerrero to submit an opposing affidavit considering that what the Bank seeks to be opposed is the very subject matter of the complaint. February 19. The Bank still had the burden of proving New York law and jurisprudence even if Guerrero did not present an opposing affidavit.R. As the party moving for summary judgment. because the Walden affidavit did not establish what the Bank intended to prove. 2003] . Guerrero may not have presented an opposing affidavit.A party should not be made to deny matters already averred in his complaint. is only permissive and not mandatory.Guerrero need not file an opposing affidavit to the Walden affidavit because his complaint itself controverts the matters set forth in the Bank‘s motion and the Walden affidavit. . Guerrero opposed the motion for partial summary judgment.Guerrero cannot be said to have admitted the averments in the Bank‘s motion for partial summary judgment and the Walden affidavit just because he failed to file an opposing affidavit.

MANUFACTURERS HANOVER TRUST CO. and/or CHEMICAL BANK, petitioners, vs. RAFAEL MA. GUERRERO, respondent. DECISION CARPIO, J.:

The Case This is a petition for review under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court to set aside the Court of Appeals‘[1] Decision of August 24, 1998 and Resolution of December 14, 1998 in CA-G.R. SP No. 42310[2] affirming the trial court‘s denial of petitioners‘ motion for partial summary judgment.

The Antecedents On May 17, 1994, respondent Rafael Ma. Guerrero (―Guerrero‖ for brevity) filed a complaint for damages against petitioner Manufacturers Hanover Trust Co. and/or Chemical Bank (―the Bank‖ for brevity) with the Regional Trial Court of Manila (―RTC‖ for brevity). Guerrero sought payment of damages allegedly for (1) illegally withheld taxes charged against interests on his checking account with the Bank; (2) a returned check worth US$18,000.00 due to signature verification problems; and (3) unauthorized conversion of his account. Guerrero amended his complaint on April 18, 1995. On September 1, 1995, the Bank filed its Answer alleging, inter alia, that by stipulation Guerrero‘s account is governed by New York law and this law does not permit any of Guerrero‘s claims except actual damages. Subsequently, the Bank filed a Motion for Partial Summary Judgment seeking the dismissal of Guerrero‘s claims for consequential, nominal, temperate, moral and exemplary damages as well as attorney‘s fees on the same ground alleged in its Answer. The Bank contended that the trial should be limited to the issue of actual damages. Guerrero opposed the motion. The affidavit of Alyssa Walden, a New York attorney, supported the Bank‘s Motion for Partial Summary Judgment. Alyssa Walden‘s affidavit (―Walden affidavit‖ for brevity) stated that Guerrero‘s New York bank account stipulated that the governing law is New York law and that this law bars all of Guerrero‘s claims except actual damages. The Philippine Consular Office in New York authenticated the Walden affidavit. The RTC denied the Bank‘s Motion for Partial Summary Judgment and its motion for reconsideration on March 6, 1996 and July 17, 1996, respectively. The Bank filed a petition for certiorari and prohibition with the Court of Appeals assailing

the RTC Orders. In its Decision dated August 24, 1998, the Court of Appeals dismissed the petition. On December 14, 1998, the Court of Appeals denied the Bank‘s motion for reconsideration. Hence, the instant petition.

The Ruling of the Court of Appeals The Court of Appeals sustained the RTC orders denying the motion for partial summary judgment. The Court of Appeals ruled that the Walden affidavit does not serve as proof of the New York law and jurisprudence relied on by the Bank to support its motion. The Court of Appeals considered the New York law and jurisprudence as public documents defined in Section 19, Rule 132 of the Rules on Evidence, as follows: ―SEC. 19. Classes of Documents. – For the purpose of their presentation in evidence, documents are either public or private. Public documents are: (a) The written official acts, or records of the official acts of the sovereign authority, official bodies and tribunals, and public officers, whether of the Philippines, or of a foreign country; x x x.‖ The Court of Appeals opined that the following procedure outlined in Section 24, Rule 132 should be followed in proving foreign law: ―SEC. 24. Proof of official record. – The record of public documents referred to in paragraph (a) of Section 19, when admissible for any purpose, may be evidenced by an official publication thereof or by a copy attested by the officer having the legal custody of the record, or by his deputy, and accompanied, if the record is not kept in the Philippines, with a certificate that such officer has the custody. If the office in which the record is kept is in a foreign country, the certificate may be made by a secretary of the embassy or legation, consul general, consul, vice consul, or consular agent or by any officer in the foreign service of the Philippines stationed in the foreign country in which the record is kept, and authenticated by the seal of his office.‖ The Court of Appeals likewise rejected the Bank‘s argument that Section 2, Rule 34 of the old Rules of Court allows the Bank to move with the supporting Walden affidavit for partial summary judgment in its favor. The Court of Appeals clarified that the Walden affidavit is not the supporting affidavit referred to in Section 2, Rule 34

that would prove the lack of genuine issue between the parties. The Court of Appeals concluded that even if the Walden affidavit is used for purposes of summary judgment, the Bank must still comply with the procedure prescribed by the Rules to prove the foreign law.

The Issues The Bank contends that the Court of Appeals committed reversible error in ―x x x HOLDING THAT [THE BANK‘S] PROOF OF FACTS TO SUPPORT ITS MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT MAY NOT BE GIVEN BY AFFIDAVIT; x x x HOLDING THAT [THE BANK‘S] AFFIDAVIT, WHICH PROVES FOREIGN LAW AS A FACT, IS ―HEARSAY‖ AND THEREBY ‗CANNOT SERVE AS PROOF OF THE NEW YORK LAW RELIED UPON BY PETITIONERS IN THEIR MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT x x x‘.‖[3] First, the Bank argues that in moving for partial summary judgment, it was entitled to use the Walden affidavit to prove that the stipulated foreign law bars the claims for consequential, moral, temperate, nominal and exemplary damages and attorney‘s fees. Consequently, outright dismissal by summary judgment of these claims is warranted. Second, the Bank claims that the Court of Appeals mixed up the requirements of Rule 35 on summary judgments and those of a trial on the merits in considering the Walden affidavit as ―hearsay.‖ The Bank points out that the Walden affidavit is not hearsay since Rule 35 expressly permits the use of affidavits. Lastly, the Bank argues that since Guerrero did not submit any opposing affidavit to refute the facts contained in the Walden affidavit, he failed to show the need for a trial on his claims for damages other than actual. The Court’s Ruling The petition is devoid of merit. The Bank filed its motion for partial summary judgment pursuant to Section 2, Rule 34 of the old Rules of Court which reads: ―Section 2. Summary judgment for defending party. – A party against whom a claim, counterclaim, or cross-claim is asserted or a declaratory relief is sought may, at any time, move with supporting affidavits for a summary judgment in his favor as to all or any part thereof.‖

A court may grant a summary judgment to settle expeditiously a case if, on motion of either party, there appears from the pleadings, depositions, admissions, and affidavits that no important issues of fact are involved, except the amount of damages. In such event, the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law.[4] In a motion for summary judgment, the crucial question is: are the issues raised in the pleadings genuine, sham or fictitious, as shown by affidavits, depositions or admissions accompanying the motion?[5] A genuine issue means an issue of fact which calls for the presentation of evidence as distinguished from an issue which is fictitious or contrived so as not to constitute a genuine issue for trial.[6] A perusal of the parties‘ respective pleadings would show that there are genuine issues of fact that necessitate formal trial. Guerrero‘s complaint before the RTC contains a statement of the ultimate facts on which he relies for his claim for damages. He is seeking damages for what he asserts as ―illegally withheld taxes charged against interests on his checking account with the Bank, a returned check worth US$18,000.00 due to signature verification problems, and unauthorized conversion of his account.‖ In its Answer, the Bank set up its defense that the agreed foreign law to govern their contractual relation bars the recovery of damages other than actual. Apparently, facts are asserted in Guerrero‘s complaint wh ile specific denials and affirmative defenses are set out in the Bank‘s answer. True, the court can determine whether there are genuine issues in a case based merely on the affidavits or counter-affidavits submitted by the parties to the court. However, as correctly ruled by the Court of Appeals, the Bank‘s motion for partial summary judgment as supported by the Walden affidavit does not demonstrate that Guerrero‘s claims are sham, fictitious or contrived. On the contrary, the Walden affidavit shows that the facts and material allegations as pleaded by the parties are disputed and there are substantial triable issues necessitating a formal trial. There can be no summary judgment where questions of fact are in issue or where material allegations of the pleadings are in dispute.[7] The resolution of whether a foreign law allows only the recovery of actual damages is a question of fact as far as the trial court is concerned since foreign laws do not prove themselves in our courts.[8] Foreign laws are not a matter of judicial notice.[9] Like any other fact, they must be alleged and proven. Certainly, the conflicting allegations as to whether New York law or Philippine law applies to Guerrero‘s claims present a clear dispute on material allegations which can be resolved only by a trial on the merits. Under Section 24 of Rule 132, the record of public documents of a sovereign authority or tribunal may be proved by (1) an official publication thereof or (2) a copy attested by the officer having the legal custody thereof . Such official publication or copy must be accompanied, if the record is not kept in the Philippines, with a certificate that the attesting officer has the legal custody thereof. The

Sec. or a specific part thereof. a publication of Bancroft-Whitney Co. it was held by the Court that evidence of the law of a foreign country on reciprocity regarding the acquisition of citizenship. in a number of decisions. in substance. in several naturalization cases. cannot rely on Willamette Iron and Steel Works v. the Supreme Court held in the case of Willamette Iron and Steel Works v. the Supreme Court considered the testimony under oath of an attorney-at-law of San Francisco. as sufficient evidence to establish the existence of said law. The attestation must state. the Court is ―satisfied of the authenticity of the written proof offered. Inc. in the light of all the circumstances. a full quotation of the cited section was offered in evidence by respondents. may be allowed and used as basis for favorable action. 13851 (a) & (b) of the California Internal and Revenue Code as published in Derring‘s California Code. however. Muzzal or Collector of Internal Revenue v. Court of Appeals[10] which held that: ―x x x: Although it is desirable that foreign law be proved in accordance with the above rule. Accordingly. the witness cited Article 4.. that the copy is a correct copy of the original. Muzzal. Fisher to support its cause.. mere authentication of the Chinese Naturalization Law by the Chinese Consulate General of Manila was held to be competent proof of that law. he is familiar with the revenue and taxation laws of the State of California.‖ Thus. and must be under the official seal of the attesting officer. in line with this view. the counsel for respondent ―testified that as an active member of the California Bar since 1951. who quoted verbatim a section of California Civil Code and who stated that the same was in force at the time the obligations were contracted. On the other hand. upheld the Tax Court in considering the pertinent law of California as proved by the respondents‘ witness. as the case may be. The Walden affidavit cannot be considered as proof of New York law on damages not only because it is self-serving but also because it does not state the . although not meeting the prescribed rule of practice. In that case. the Supreme Court in the Collector of Internal Revenue v. These cases involved attorneys testifying in open court during the trial in the Philippines and quoting the particular foreign laws sought to be established. if. the Walden affidavit was taken abroad ex parte and the affiant never testified in open court. Certain exceptions to this rule were recognized in Asiavest Limited v. Fisher et al. however. Rule 132 of the Revised Rules of Court) does not exclude the presentation of other competent evidence to prove the existence of a foreign law. Rule 123 (Section 25. When asked by the lower court to state the pertinent California law as regards exemption of intangible personal properties. California.‖ Likewise. and authenticated by the seal of his office. that Section 41. In that case. And as part of his testimony.‖ (Emphasis supplied) The Bank.certificate may be issued by any of the authorized Philippine embassy or consular officials stationed in the foreign country in which the record is kept.

Y.. 770 F. ….N.D. Official Comment 2. 1991).2d 31. 7. Guerrero claims that this was a wrongful dishonor. v.Y. that is a legitimate and justifiable reason not to pay. and have found no cases that use it.Y. Moray Homes. I have reviewed Dobbs. The Uniform Commercial Code (―UCC‖) governs many aspects of a Bank‘s relationship with its depositors.2d 868. 540 N. and could not verify Guerrero‘s signature. damage to reputation and mental distress are considered consequential damages.Y. I have also done a computerized search for the phrase in all published New York cases. 319.Y. 389 N.2d 387. Donald Park Acres.2d 312. Such damages are awarded both in tort and contract cases when the plaintiff establishes a cause of action against the defendant.. occurs when a bank refuses to pay a check for reasons such as a missing indorsement. he cannot ask for nominal damages. As a matter of New York law.Y. Consequential damages are not available in the ordinary case of a justifiable refusal to pay. National Westminster Bank U. 390 (3d Dep‘t 1989) Martin v. but is unable to prove‖ actual damages. Kenford Co. a well-respected treatise. Supp. I have never heard the phrase used in American law. 86970 (4th Dep‘t 1975) damage to reputation). 5. consistent with the UCC.2d 718. Geler v. 73 N. 215 (S. Ltd.S. Dobbs.. requests for lost profits. Country of Erie.32 at 294 (1993).4(1) at 63 (emotional distress). 32 (2nd Dep‘t 1976).A. Pitcherello v.D. In New York.2d 860.2d 975. v. trivial sums such as six cents or $1. the UCC states that ―justifiable refusal to pay or accept‖ as opposed to dishonor. Motif Construction Corp. In this case.. it governs Guerrero‘s claim arising out of the non-payment of the $18. a claim for emotional distress cannot be recovered for a breach of contract. a missing or illegible signature or a forgery. which may allow consequential damages in a breach of contract case (as does the UCC where there is a wrongful dishonor).2d 1.S.540 N..D.000 check. There is no concept of temperate damages in New York law.S. which does not use the phrase ―temperate damages‖ in its index. Buffalo Savings Bank. § 3-510. 210. 150 A. Since Guerrero is claiming for actual damages. MHT returned the check because it had no signature card on …. UCC 1-106 provides that ―neither consequential or special or punitive damages may be had except as specifically provided in the Act or by other rule of law‖. § 3.S. This is more restrictive than the New York common law. 54 A.specific New York law on damages. Law of Remedies. 8. Damage to reputation is also not recoverable for . Inc.D. 6. We reproduce portions of the Walden affidavit as follows: ―3. UCC 4-103 further provides that consequential damages can be recovered only where there is bad faith. However. ―[n]ominal damages are damages in name only. 374 N. In my opinion. 50 A. Law of Remedies §12. Under New York law.S. 4.. to the Complaint. 4-5 (1989) (lost profits). Dobbs.

Geler v. 1991).Catalogue Service of …chester[11]_v. 488 N.2d 241.S. 210.2d 921. 110 A. 215 (S. Supp. (quoting Chapman v. Furthermore. 770 F.2d 66 (1st Dep‘t 1978).Y.g. Inc. Sheldon. 463 N. New York courts will not take into consideration the performance of the stock after the breach. 74 A.D.S. 319.Y.D. 406 N. Senior v. Soho Landmark Assocs.2d 601. Ring Assocs.‖ Kenford Co.Y. only a private wrong and not a public right is involved.D.Y. 12. 90 A. While the Bank attached copies of some of the U. 11.2d 833.Y. F. 838. 559 (4th Dep‘t 1982). Motif Construction Corp. 73 A. damages will be based on the value of the stock at the time of the breach. 374 N. Atkin.S.. E.S. court decisions .2d 1276.. 59 N. Aroneck v. den.2d 312. Geler v. 9. 10.2d at 86970.2d 497. 770 F. 14. Rather.2d 966. 582 N.2d 837. National Westminster Bank. 449 N.Y. it has been consistently held under New York law that exemplary damages are not available for a mere breach of contract for in such a case.Supp. Under New York law. 1991).2d 1023 (1983)..2d 396 (1st Dep‘t 1992). Exemplary.S. of North America.2d 1.M.Y.S.D. Insurance Co.2d 165. Walker v.S.D.S.D.2d 401. 637 (2d Dep‘t 1980). 577 N. Fargo. Buffalo Savings Bank. courts.Y. 63 A.E. 32. The citations in the Walden affidavit of various U. 242 (2d Dep‘t 1985). court decisions do not constitute proof of the official records or decisions of the U. even where the plaintiff claims the defendant acted with malice... 3 (1989).S. National Westminster Bank.Y.2d 558. 425 N.Y. or punitive damages are not allowed for a breach of contract.Y. Under New York law. 210. 223 N. Manufacturers Hanover Trust Co. 13.N. Camatron Sewing Mach.Y.D. Inc. 179 N.E. a plaintiff is not entitled to attorneys‘ fees unless they are provided by contract or statute. Stanisic v. 213 (S. app.2d 488 (1961).Y.2d 635. 281 (1st Dep‘t 1991).2d 268. 223 N. a party can only get consequential damages if they were the type that would naturally arise from the breach and if they were ―brought within the contemplation of parties as the probable result of the breach at the time of or prior to contracting.a contract. v. 36 (1918).D.Y. In cases where the issue is the breach of a contract to purchase stock. 73 N. Exemplary or punitive damages may be recovered only where it is alleged and proven that the wrong supposedly committed by defendant amounts to a fraud aimed at the public generally and involves a high moral culpability. The North Insurance Company.Y.‖[12] The Walden affidavit states conclusions from the affiant‘s personal interpretation and opinion of the facts of the case vis a vis the alleged laws and jurisprudence without citing any law in particular. Thaler v.S. There is no statute that permits attorney‘s fees in a case of this type. 179 A. Country of Erie.Y. 10 N.S. Inc. v.S.S.. 540 N.2d 280. v. as a matter of law. 456 N.N.

As the party moving for summary judgment. A party should not be made to deny matters already averred in his complaint. Guerrero may not have presented an opposing affidavit. the Walden affidavit did not prove the current state of New York law and jurisprudence. it would have been redundant and pointless for Guerrero to submit an opposing affidavit considering that what the Bank seeks to be opposed is the very subject matter of the complaint. However. The adverse party prior to the day of hearing may serve opposing affidavits. The Bank still had the burden of proving New York law and jurisprudence even if Guerrero did not present an opposing affidavit. The Bank‘s intention in presenting the Walden affidavit is to prove New York law and jurisprudence. Motion and proceedings thereon.‖ (Emphasis supplied) It is axiomatic that the term ―may‖ as used in remedial law. However. because the Walden affidavit did not establish what the Bank intended to prove. because of the failure to comply with Section 24 of Rule 132 on how to prove a foreign law and decisions of foreign courts. After the hearing. – The motion shall be served at least ten (10) days before the time specified for the hearing. what New York law and jurisprudence are on the matters at issue. although he did not present an opposing affidavit. the Bank makes much of Guerrero‘s failure to submit an opposing affidavit to the Walden affidavit. Next. there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law. together with the affidavits. the Bank has the burden of clearly demonstrating the absence of any genuine issue of fact and that any doubt as to the existence of such issue is resolved against the movant. except as to the amount of damages. expressly or impliedly. these copies do not comply with Section 24 of Rule 132 on proof of official records or decisions of foreign courts. Guerrero opposed the motion for partial summary judgment. thus: ―SEC. Guerrero did not admit. depositions and admissions on file. Guerrero need not file an opposing affidavit to the Walden affidavit because his complaint itself controverts the matters set forth in the Bank‘s motion and the Walden affidavit. is only permissive and not mandatory. the pertinent provision of Section 3. Thus. . Certainly. Rule 35 of the old Rules of Court did not make the submission of an opposing affidavit mandatory. but has not proved. 3.[13] Guerrero cannot be said to have admitted the averments in the Bank‘s motion for partial summary judgment and the Walden affidavit just because he failed to file an opposing affidavit. the Bank has only alleged. show that.cited in the Walden affidavit. the judgment sought shall be rendered forthwith if the pleadings.[14] Moreover. the veracity of the statements in the Walden affidavit. as there was no need for one.

no part. si Kuya Ronnie lagay niya titi niya at sinaksak sa pepe.. concur. 3 yr old daughter Cyra May said. C. 1998 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. RTC found Rullepa guilt beyond reasonable doubt of rape and sentenced him to death. There is a need to determine by presentation of evidence in a regular trial if the Bank is guilty of any wrongdoing and if it is liable for damages under the applicable laws. Digest People v. Cyra May said she was raped twice in Ronnie‘s room. They waited till morning to take him to Camp Karingal where he admitted the imputations against him & where he was detained thereafter. Davide. The Decision dated August 24. Vitug and Azcuna. SP No. This case has been delayed long enough by the Bank‘s resort to a motion for partial summary judgment.. FACTS: In Nov 1995. to aid parties in avoiding the expense and loss of time involved in a trial.‖ Kuya Ronnie is accused-appellant Ronnie Rullepa. the Buenafe‘s houseboy. He opined that it was because Mrs Gloria Buenafe was against him for not answering her queries about her H‘s whereabouts that‘s why she found fault against him. Unable to contain her anger. Ronnie however later denied having anything to do w/ the abrasions found in Cyra May‘s genitalia. J. the Bank has successfully defeated the very purpose for which summary judgments were devised in our rules. Ronnie readily admitted doing those things but only once at 4PM of Nov 17 ‘95. . JJ. 3 days earlier. 1998 and the Resolution dated December 14. Jr. puwit at sa bibig ko.. Ironically. the petition is DENIED for lack of merit. SO ORDERED. WHEREFORE. Sps verified from Ronnie if what Cyra May told her was true. She further stated that it was caused by friction w/ an object. Gloria slapped him many times. Ynares-Santiago. Medico-legal Officer Dr Preyra testified that Cyra May is in virgin state physically and the presence of abrasions in her female organ. perhaps an erect penis and doubted if riding on a bicycle had caused such injuries. the courts a quo correctly denied the Bank‘s motion for partial summary judgment.J. 42310 is AFFIRMED.There being substantial triable issues between the parties.. while her mother Gloria Buenafe was about to set the table. (Chairman). which is.R. ―Mama. Rullepa Nature: Automatic Review of a decision of RTC QC. Gloria waited for her H to arrive that night.

Wherefore. Moreover.HELD: Rullepa guilty of statutory rape. His prior admission became conclusive upon him. Rullepa prays that he be held liable for acts of lasciviousness instead or rape since Cyra May testified that he merely ―scrubbed‖ his penis against her vagina. In addition. Neither is it normal tv fare. as well as the implication of his failure to deny the same. No. Rule 130 of the Rules of Evidence. Although no document was offered as evidence to prove Cyra May‘s age a person‘s appearance is relevant as evidence of age so the tribunal may properly observe the person brought before it . Besides. Cyra May‘s account of the event could not possibly be a mere product of her imagination for it is hardly the stuff of romance or fairy tales. EN BANC [G. Preyra that there were abrasions in her labia minora. warranting the imposition of the death sentence as per the same Article . Because of the vast disparity between the alleged age (3 yrs old) and the age sought to be proved (below 12 yrs old ). 2003] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. vs. However. there is no doubt as regards the existence of the 2nd element of statutory rape. Moreover. Her very tender age still made her possess the necessary intelligence and perceptiveness sufficient to invest her w/ the competence to testify about her experience. plaintiff-appellee. Rullepa is sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua and not the death penalty. March 5. Accused had carnal knowledge of a woman 2. 131516. that the victim was below 12 yrs old at the time of the commission of the offense. Woman is below 12 yrs of age Cyra May‘s age is relevant in this case of rape since it may constitute an element of the offense as per RA 7659.R. were disregarded. even if such admission. Judgment affirmed w/ modification.e. i. the victim‘s age may constitute a qualifying circumstance. the testimony of a member of the family may be accepted as regards the exact age or date of birth of the offended party pursuant to Sec 40. . Furthermore. RONNIE RULLEPA y GUINTO. accused-appellant. her testimony was corroborated by the findings of Dr. it was proven that there was indeed penetration. 2 Elements of Statutory Rape: 1. the evidence suffices to establish his guilt beyond reasonable doubt.

1995. in Quezon City. by means of force and intimidation. As on the night of November 20. 3 years of age. namely Cyra May. at 4:00 p. ―Mama. Gloria slapped accused-appellant several times. Gloria‘s sworn statement[5] was then taken. si kuya Ronnie lagay niya titi niya at sinaksak sa puwit at sa bibig ko. the said accused.[4] she waited until their arrival at past 11:00 p. Dr.[6] .: On complaint of Cyra May Francisco Buenafe. against her will and without her consent. kissing her lips and vagina and thereafter rubbing his penis and inserting the same to the inner portion of the vagina of the undersigned complainant. 1996. Buenafe and Gloria verified from him whether what Cyra May had told them was true. Since it was already midnight. of November 17. J.DECISION CARPIO-MORALES. Cyra May.[1] Arraigned on January 15. the Buenafes‘ house boy. to which she answered many times.[3] her mother Gloria Francisco Buenafe. accused-appellant Ronnie Rullepa y Guinto was charged with Rape before the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Quezon City allegedly committed as follows: That on or about the 17th day of November. Buenafe. and Cyra May indicated the room where accused-appellant slept and pointed at his pillow. Gloria then sent accused-appellant out on an errand and informed her husband about their daughter‘s plaint. the spouses waited until the following morning to bring accused-appellant to Camp Karingal where he admitted the imputations against him. Ronnie readily admitted doing those things but only once. a minor. Buenafe thereupon talked to Cyra May who repeated what she had earlier told her mother Gloria. Gloria asked Cyra May what else he did to her. then only three and a half years old. Gloria asked Cyra May how many times accused-appellant did those things to her. who was sometimes left with Cyra May at home. Preyra. Cristina V. Unable to contain her anger. 1995 accused-appellant was out with Gloria‘s husband Col. 1995. When accused-appellant returned.‖ ―Kuya Ronnie‖ is accused-appellant Ronnie Rullepa.m. 1995 or three days earlier. Pursuing. unlawfully and feloniously removing her panty. the prosecution established the following facts: On November 20. to wit: by then and there willfully. as Gloria was about to set the table for dinner at her house in Quezon City. on account of which he was detained. told her. accused-appellant pleaded not guilty. Philippines.m. and SPO4 Catherine Borda.[2] From the testimonies of its witnesses.

1995. GENITAL: There is absence of pubic hair. On separating the same is disclosed an abraded posterior fourchette and an elastic. Cyra May declared at the witness stand: ―Sinaksak nya ang titi sa pepe ko. (Emphasis supplied. perhaps an erect penis. he used to be ordered to buy medicine for Cyra May who had difficulty urinating. at sa bunganga . Abdomen is flat and soft. Breasts are undeveloped. convex and coaptated with congested and abraded labia minora presenting in between. Thus: qAccording to them you caused the abrasions found in her genital? . Gloria would always find fault in him. the Medico-Legal Officer and Chief of the Biological Science Branch of the Philippine National Police Crime Laboratory who examined Crya May. He denied having anything to do with the abrasions found in Cyra May‘s genitalia. She added that accused-appellant did these to her twice in his bedroom. came up with her report dated November 21. fleshy type intact hymen. xxx CONCLUSION: Subject is in virgin state physically. Preyra‘s explanation. Dr. Preyra. who was 28 and single at the time he took the witness stand on June 9. 1997. External vaginal orifice does not admit the tip of the examining index finger. Labia majora are full. Ma.[7] containing the following findings and conclusions: FINDINGS: GENERAL AND EXTRA GENITAL: Fairly developed. He further alleged that after he refused to answer Gloria‘s queries if her husband Buenafe. was womanizing.Recalling what accused-appellant did to her.[8] The defense‘s sole witness was accused-appellant. fairly nourished and coherent female child subject. She doubted if riding on a bicycle had caused the injuries. and claimed that prior to the alleged incident. the abrasions on the labia minora could have been caused by friction with an object. sa puwit ko.) By Dr. There are no external signs of recent application of any form of trauma at the time of examination. whom he usually accompanied whenever he went out of the house. He suggested that Gloria was behind the filing of the complaint. Cristina V.‖ thus causing her pain and drawing her to cry.

[9] qaqaqa- Finding for the prosecution.000. Buenafe got mad at me because after I explained to her that I was going with her gusband (sic) to the children of the husband with a former marriage.[10] (Italics in the original. Did you know why the child has difficulty in urinating? No. this automatic review. I do not know. sir. If that is not true. The accused is ordered to pay CYRA MAE BUENAFE the amount of P40. accused-appellant assigning the following errors to the trial court: I THE COURT A QUO ERRED IN CONSIDERING AS ADMISSIBLE IN EVIDENCE THE ACCUSED-APPELLANT‘S ADMISSION. Branch 96 of the Quezon City RTC rendered judgment. III .00 as civil indemnity. the complaint filed by the mother of the victim? I did not do it. sir. What is the truth. Costs to be paid by the accused. what can you say about this present complaint filed against you? As I said Mrs. sir. And how about the present complaint filed against you. and he is accordingly sentenced to death. judgment is hereby rendered finding accused RONNIE RULLEPA y GUINTO guilty beyond reasonable doubt of rape.aqa- That is not true. II THE COURT A QUO ERRED ON (sic) RULING THAT THE ACCUSED-APPELLANT‘S SILENCE DURING TRIAL AMOUNTED TO AN IMPLIED ADMISSION OF GUILT.) Hence. the dispositive portion of which reads: WHEREFORE. what is the truth? As I have mentioned earlier that before I started working with the family I was sent to Crame to buy medicine for the daughter because she had difficulty in urinating.

THE COURT A QUO ERRED IN FINDING THAT THE GUILT OF THE ACCUSEDAPPELLANT FOR THE CRIME CHARGED HAS BEEN PROVEN BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT. IV THE COURT A QUO GRAVELY ERRED IN IMPOSING THE SUPREME PENALTY OF DEATH UPON THE ACCUSED-APPELLANT.[11] (Emphasis supplied.) Accused-appellant assails the crediting by the trial court, as the following portion of its decision shows, of his admission to Gloria of having sexually assaulted Cyra May: In addition, the mother asserted that Rullepa had admitted Cyra Ma[y]‘s complaint during the confrontation in the house. Indeed, according to the mother, the admission was even expressly qualified by Rullepa‘s insistence that he had committed the sexual assault only once, specifying the time thereof as 4:00 pm of November 17, 1995. That qualification proved that the admission was voluntary and true. An uncoerced and truthful admission like this should be absolutely admissible and competent. xxx Remarkably, the admission was not denied by the accused during trial despite his freedom to deny it if untrue. Hence, the admission became conclusive upon him.[12] (Emphasis supplied.) To accused-appellant, the statements attributed to him are inadmissible since they were made out of fear, having been elicited only after Cyra May‘s parents ―bullied and questioned him.‖ He thus submits that it was error for the trial court to take his failure to deny the statements during the trial as an admission of guilt. Accused-appellant‘s submission does not persuade. The trial court considered his admission merely as an additional ground to convince itself of his culpability. Even if such admission, as well as the implication of his failure to deny the same, were disregarded, the evidence suffices to establish his guilt beyond reasonable doubt. The plain, matter-of-fact manner by which Cyra May described her abuse in the hands of her Kuya Ronnie is an eloquent testament to the truth of her accusations. Thus she testified on direct examination: qaqaDo you recall if Ronnie Rullepa did anything to you? Yes, sir. What did he do to you? ―Sinaksak nya ang titi sa pepe ko, sa puwit ko, at sa bunganga‖

qa-

How many times did he do that to you? Twice, sir.

xxx qaqaDo you remember when he did these things to you? Opo. When was that? When my mother was asleep, he put – he removed my panty and inserted his penis inside my vagina, my anus and my mouth, sir.

xxx qaqaqaAfter your Kuya Ronnie did those things to you what did you feel? ―Sabi nya ganito (Witness putting her finger in her lips) Nasaktan po ako at umiyak po ako‖. Did you cry because of hurt? Yes. What part of your body hurt? ―Pepe ko po.‖ When I went to the bathroom to urinate, I felt pain in my organ, sir.[13]

Cyra May reiterated her testimony during cross-examination, providing more revolting details of her ordeal: qaSo, you said that Kuya Ronnie did something to you what did he do to you on November 17, 1995? ―Sinaksak nga yong titi nya‖. He inserted his penis to my organ and to my mouth, sir.

xxx qWhen you said that your kuya Ronnie inserted his penis into your organ, into your mouth, and into your anus, would you describe what – his penis? It is a round object, sir.

a-

C o u r t: Is this titi of your kuya Ronnie a part of his body? aqaOpo. Was that in the head of kuya Ronnie? No, sir.

q-

Which part of his body that titi located?

(Witness pointing to her groin area) C o u r t: Continue xxx qaqaqaqaqaWhy were you in that room? Gusto nya po matulog ako sa kuwarto niya. When you were in that room, what did Kuya Ronnie do to you? ―Hinubo po niya ang panty ko.‖ And after he remove your panty, what did Kuya Ronnie do, what did he do to you? He inserted his penis to my organ, sir. Why did kuya Ronnie, was kuya Ronnie already naked or he was already wearing any clothing? Still had his clothing on, sir. So, where did his penis, saan lumabas ang penis ni Kuya Ronnie? Dito po, (Witness referring or pointing to her groin area) So, that‘s the –and at the time, you did not cry and you did not shout for help? Sabi nya po, not to make any noise because my mother might be roused from sleep. How long was kuya Ronnie did that to you? Matagal po. After kuya Ronnie scrub his penis to your vagina, what other things did he do? After that he inserted his penis to my mouth, and to my anus, sir. You did not complain and you did not shout? I cried, sir.[14]

xxx qaqaqaqa-

Accused-appellant draws attention to the statement of Cyra May that he was not in the house on November 17 (1995), as reflected in the following transcript of her testimony:

qaqaqa-

Is it not a fact that you said a while ago that when your father leaves the house, he [was] usually accompanied by your kuya Ronnie? Opo. Why is it that Kuya Ronnie was in the house when you father left the house at that time, on November 17? He was with Kuya Ronnie, sir. So, it is not correct that kuya Ronnie did something to you because your kuya Ronnie [was] always with your Papa? Yes, sir.[15]

The above-quoted testimony of Cyra May does not indicate the time when her father Col. Buenafe left their house on November 17, 1995 with accused-appellant and, thus, does not preclude accused-appellant‘s commission of rape on the same date. In any event, a young child is vulnerable to suggestion, hence, her affirmative response to the defense counsel‘s above-quoted leadingquestions. As for the variance in the claim regarding when Gloria was informed of the rape, Gloria having testified that she learned of it on November 20, 1995 [16] while Cyra May said that immediately after the incident, she awakened her mother who was in the adjacent room and reported it:[17] This is a minor matter that does not detract from Cyra May‘s categorical, material testimony that accused -appellant inserted his penis into her vagina. Accused-appellant goes on to contend that Cyra May was coached, citing the following portion of her testimony: qa―Yong sinabi mong sinira nya ang buhay mo,‖ where did you get that phrase? It was the word of my Mama, sir.[18]

On the contrary, the foregoing testimony indicates that Cyra May was really narrating the truth, that of hearing her mother utter ―sinira niya ang buhay mo.‖ Accused-appellant‘s suggestion that Cyra May merely imagined the things of which he is accused, perhaps getting the idea from television programs, is preposterous. It is true that ―the ordinary child is a ‗great weaver of romances,‘‘‘ a nd her ―imagination may induce (her) to relate something she has heard or read in a story as personal experience.‖[19] But Cyra May‘s account is hardly the stuff of romance or fairy tales. Neither is it normal TV fare, if at all. This Court cannot believe that a victim of Cyra May‘s age could concoct a tale of defloration, allow the examination of her private parts, and undergo the expense, trouble, inconvenience, not to mention the trauma of public trial.[20]

It is possible that accused-appellant‘s penis failed to penetrate her anus as deeply as it did her vagina. her testimony is corroborated by the findings of Dr. No mother in her right mind would subject her child to the humiliation. That the Medical-Legal Officer found ―no external signs of recent application of any form of trauma at the time of the examination‖ does not preclude accused appellant‘s conviction since the infliction of force is immaterial in statutory rape. He surmises that she could have scratched herself which caused the abrasions. disgrace and trauma attendant to a prosecution for rape if she were not motivated solely by the desire to incarcerate the person responsible for the child‘s defilement. if at all. Her demeanor as a witness – manifested during trial by her unhesitant.[22] The abrasions could not. [24] Courts are seldom.[23] More. This Court thus accords great weight to the following assessment of the trial court regarding the competency and credibility of Cyra May as a witness: Her very tender age notwithstanding. accused-appellant claims that even before the alleged incident Cyra May was already suffering from pain in urinating. quoted verbatim.) In a futile attempt at exculpation. Cyra Ma(y) nonetheless appeared to possess the necessary intelligence and perceptiveness sufficient to invest her with the competence to testify about her experience. convinced that a mother would stoop so low as to subject her daughter to physical hardship and shame concomitant to a rape prosecution just to assuage her own hurt feelings.[25] Alternatively. Needless to state. which rendered inconceivable for her to describe a ―bad‖ act of the accused unless it really happened to her. Preyra that there were abrasions in her labia minora. have been self-inflicted.Besides. and plain responses to questions – further enhanced her claim to credit and trustworthiness. apparently on the basis of the following testimony of Cyra May. that he merely ―scrubbed‖ his penis against her vagina: . the former being more resistant to extreme forces than the latter. Her responses during the examination of counsel and of the Court established her consciousness of the distinction between good and bad. Preyra. That Cyra May suffered pain in her vagina but not in her anus despite her testimony that accused-appellant inserted his penis in both orifices does not diminish her credibility. Accused-appellant‘s imputation of ill motive on the part of Gloria is puerile. she described the act of the accused as bad. could have been caused by friction with an erect penis. spontaneous.[21] (Italics in the original. She stated categorically that that part of the female organ is very sensitive and rubbing or scratching it is painful. therefore. however. accused-appellant prays that he be held liable for acts of lasciviousness instead of rape. which she opined. Dr. was quick to rule out this possibility. She might have been an impressionable child – as all others of her age are – but her narration of Kuya Ronnie‘s placing his ―titi‖ in her ―pepe‖ was certainly one which could not be considered as a common child‘s tale.

found abrasions in the labia minora. when the victim is under eighteen (18) years of age and the offender is a parent. The same is true with respect to the second element. The victim‘s age is relevant in rape cases since it may constitute an element of the offense. guardian. step-parent. the first element. the victim‘s age may constitute a qualifying circumstance. sir. – Rape is committed by having carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the following circumstances: x x x. warranting the imposition of the death sentence. relative by consanguinity or affinity with the third civil degree. The same Article states: The death penalty shall also be imposed if the crime of rape is committed with any of the following attendant circumstances: 1. And when – he did not actually penetrated your vagina? Yes. x x x. 3. not just a mere rubbing or ―scrubbing‖ of the penis against its surface. 7659. x x x. or the common-law spouse of the parent of the victim. Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code. carnal knowledge.[26] Dr. and (2) that the woman is below twelve years of age. [28] As shown in the previous discussion. as amended by Republic Act No. Preya. however. . Furthermore. The crime of rape shall be punished by reclusion perpetua.[29] provides: Art. the crime committed by accused-appellant is not merely acts of lasciviousness but statutory rape. ascendant. The two elements of statutory rape are (1) that the accused had carnal knowledge of a woman. sir. When and how rape is committed. When the woman is under twelve years of age x x x.‖[27] proving that there was indeed penetration of the vagina. which is ―directly beneath the labia majora. had been established beyond reasonable doubt. In fine.qaqa- Is it not a fact that kuya Ronnie just made some scrubbed his penis into your vagina? Yes. 335.

If the certificate of live birth or authentic document is shown to have been lost or destroyed or otherwise unavailable. when the victim is x x x a child below seven (7) years old. 6. the testimony. the complainant‘s testimony will suffice provided that it is expressly and clearly admitted by the accused. b. . or the testimony of the victim‘s mother or relatives concerning the victim‘s age. similar authentic documents such as baptismal certificate and school records which show the date of birth of the victim would suffice to prove age. if clear and credible. If the victim is alleged to be below 3 years of age and what is sought to be proved is that she is less than 7 years old. x x x.[30]established a set of guidelines in appreciating age as an element of the crime or as a qualifying circumstance. In the absence of a certificate of live birth. Because of the seemingly conflicting decisions regarding the sufficiency of evidence of the victim‘s age in rape cases. If the victim is alleged to be below 12 years of age and what is sought to be proved is that she is less than 18 years old. In the absence of a certificate of live birth. in the recently decided case of People v. Pruna. to wit: 1. If the victim is alleged to be below 7 years of age and what is sought to be proved is that she is less than 12 years old. c.x x x. Rule 130 of the Rules on Evidence shall be sufficient under the following circumstances: a. of the victim‘s mother or a member of the family either by affinity or consanguinity who is qualified to testify on matters respecting pedigree such as the exact age or date of birth of the offended party pursuant to Section 40. The trial court should always make a categorical finding as to the age of the victim. It is the prosecution that has the burden of proving the age of the offended party. 3. authentic document. The best evidence to prove the age of the offended party is an original or certified true copy of the certificate of live birth of such party. The failure of the accused to object to the testimonial evidence regarding age shall not be taken against him. 4. this Court. 5. 2. 4.

In view of the uncertainty of LIZETTE‘s exact age.) . she replied that she was 5 years old. the Medico-Legal Report relied upon by the trial court does not in any way prove the age of LIZETTE. testified (that the victim was three years old at the time of the commission of the crime). For PRUNA to be convicted of rape in its qualified form and meted the supreme penalty of death. xxx Likewise. No. 3 (b) of the foregoing guidelines. in relation to no. LIZETTE testified on 20 November 1996. this Court in the Pruna case held that the therein accused-appellant could only be sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua since: x x x no birth certificate or any similar authentic document. Thus. Her mother. Jacqueline. Such being the case. and hence the death penalty cannot be imposed on him. x x x. having carnal knowledge of a woman under 12 years of age is punishable by reclusion perpetua. as amended by R. conformably with no. PRUNA cannot be convicted of qualified rape. Only testimonial evidence was presented to establish LIZETTE‘s age. especially its irreversible and final nature once carried out. makes the decision-making process in capital offenses aptly subject to the most exacting rules of procedure and evidence. or almost two years after the incident. when the defense counsel asked her how old she was on 3 January 1995. she could not answer. It must be stressed that the severity of the death penalty. However. 3 of the first paragraph thereof. (Italics in the original. and not death penalty. the testimony of LIZETTE‘s mother that she was 3 years old at the time of the commission of the crime is sufficient for purposes of holding PRUNA liable for statutory rape. the penalty to be imposed on PRUNA should be reclusion perpetua.A. Under the second paragraph of Article 335. or rape of a girl below 12 years of age. baptismal certificate or any other authentic document should be introduced in evidence in order that the qualifying circumstance of ―below seven (7) years old‖ is appreciated against the appellant. such as a baptismal certificate of LIZETTE. The lack of objection on the part of the defense as to her age did not excuse the prosecution from discharging its burden. 7659. it must be established with certainty that LIZETTE was below 7 years old at the time of the commission of the crime. x x x. that she was 5 years old. That the defense invoked LIZETTE‘s tender age for purposes of questioning her competency to testify is not necessarily an admission that she was below 7 years of age when PRUNA raped her on 3 January 1995.Applying the foregoing guidelines. However. was presented to prove her age. corroborative evidence such as her birth certificate. Upon further question as to the date she was born. for there is nothing therein which even mentions her age. However. or at the time of the rape.

it ―is the cognizance of certain facts which judges may properly take and act on without proof because they already know them. however. as to which he will not be required to offer evidence. rather. it does. Rule 129 of the Rules of Court. the prosecution has the burden of proving with certainty the fact that the victim was under 18 years of age when the rape was committed in order to justify the imposition of the death penalty under the above-cited provision. is a phrase sometimes used in a loose way to cover some other judicial action. without the requisite hearing prescribed by Section 3. A person‘s appearance. Judicial notice signifies that there are certain ―facta probanda. Section 1.‖ or propositions in a party‘s case. are frequently referred to in terms of judicial notice. Certain rules of Evidence.‖ When the trier of facts observes the appearance of a person to ascertain his or her age. the object of which is to do away with the presentation of evidence.Several cases[31] suggest that courts may take ―judicial notice‖ of the appearance of the victim in determining her age. that the presentation of the certificate of birth is at all times necessary to prove minority. inconvenient. the same being addressed to the senses of the court. [35] cannot take judicial notice of the victim‘s age. (Emphasis supplied. where the provisions governing judicial notice are found. of facts which are already known to courts. he is conducting an examination of the evidence. and expensive both to parties and the court to require proof.‖ Rule 129 of the Rules of Court. he is not taking judicial notice of such fact. a handful of cases[34] holds that courts. For example. The minority of a victim of tender age who may be below the age of ten is quite manifest and the court can take judicial notice thereof. Tipay. This is not to say that the process is not sanctioned by the Rules of Court. these will be taken for true by the tribunal without the need of evidence.[37] The process by which the trier of facts judges a person‘s age from his or her appearance cannot be categorized as judicial notice. Judicial notice is based upon convenience and expediency for it would certainly be superfluous. Such a process militates against the very concept of judicial notice.[38] As Tundag puts it. In this situation. in People v.[32] qualified the ruling inPeople v. Javier. The crucial years pertain to the ages of fifteen to seventeen where minority may seem to be dubitable due to one‘s physical appearance. where relevant. on the contrary. usually known under other names.) On the other hand. [36] Judicial notice. in the ordinary way.[33] which required the presentation of the birth certificate to prove the rape victim‘s age. is entitled ―What Need Not Be Proved. the evidence being the appearance of the person. is admissible as object evidence. Rule 130 provides: . the Court. however. with the following pronouncement: This does not mean.

of a wound by the judge where mayhem was alleged. [44] This Court itself has sanctioned the determination of an alien‘s age from his appearance. the inspection and comparison of seals. The person of a Chinese alien seeking admission into the Philippine Islands is evidence in an investigation by the board of special inquiry to determine his right to enter. Thus. a contrary rule would for such an inference be pedantically over-cautious.‖[40] (Emphasis supplied. if so. as evidence of age (for example. whether judge or jury. When an object is relevant to the fact in issue. to be the child of another.[42] Consequently. or of being under the age of consent to intercourse). the jury or the court trying an issue of fact may be allowed to judge the age of persons in court by observation of such persons. and such body may take into consideration his appearance to determine or assist in determining his age and a finding that the applicant is not a minor based upon such appearance is not without evidence to support it.[45] this Court ruled that: The customs authorities may also determine from the personal appearance of the immigrant what his age is. and of the person of one alleged to be an infant.) A person‘s appearance. Agadas. it may be exhibited to. [41] Experience teaches that corporal appearances are approximately an index of the age of their bearer. in order to fix his age. in a bastardy proceeding. in real actions. In every case such evidence should be accepted and weighed for what it may be in each case worth. Object as evidence. ―To be sure. In Braca v. are few illustrations of what may be found abundantly in our own legal records and textbooks for seven centuries past. This Court has also implicitly recognized the same process in a criminal case. Collector of Customs. The examination and cross-examination of a party before the jury are equivalent to exhibiting him before the jury and an offer of such person as an exhibit is properly refused. has its roots in ancient judicial procedure. things or persons relevant to the fact in dispute. in United States v. is usually regarded as relevant. of objects which furnish evidence.[43] The formal offer of the person as evidence is not necessary.SECTION 1. examined or viewed by the court. The view of the land by the jury.‖[39] The author proceeds to quote from another authority: ―Nothing is older or commoner in the administration of law in all countries than the submission to the senses of the tribunal itself.(‘) the implements with which a crime was committed or of a person alleged. to determine whether they are (‗)blemished. the outward physical appearance of an alleged minor may be considered in judging his age.[46] this Court held: . the examination of writings.‖ one author writes. In particular. – Objects as evidence are those addressed to the senses of the court. ―this practice of inspection by the court of objects. particularly for the marked extremes of old age and youth. and. of infancy. the tribunal may properly observe the person brought before it.

‖ This court.‖ In United States vs. but judging by his appearance he is a youth 18 or 19 years old.Pruna laid down guideline no. that he had never purchased a cedula. yet the trial court reached the conclusion. Taking into consideration the marked difference in the penalties to be imposed upon that age. x x x. in fact 18 years of age at the time the robbery was committed. that he then was only 16 years of age. you had better get some positive evidence to that effect. There is no proof in the record.Rosario Sabacahan testified that he was 17 years of age.‖ While it is true that in the instant case Rosario testified that he was 17 years of age. There can be no question. Thereupon the court asked this defendant these questions: ―You are a pretty big boy for seventeen. said: ―The defendant.‖ Answer: ―I do not remember. 1984) Estavillo testified. in passing upon the age of Estavillo. and he is. This doubt must be resolved in favor of the defendant. as I already stated on what date and in what year I was born. notwithstanding his testimony giving his age as 16 years. But the trial judge said: ―The accused Estavillo. sentenced to six months of arresto mayor in lieu of six years ten months and one day of presidio mayor. testified that he thought that he was about 17 years of age.‖ Answer: ―I cannot tell exactly because I do not remember when I was born. As to the weight to accord such appearance. as to the admissibility of a person‘s appearance in determining his or her age. just two years over 18. at least.‖ The court. is. therefore. and by so doing reached the conclusion that he was at least 20. but 17 years is my guess. therefore. especially in rape cases.. of the Penal code. we must. Gaz. conclude (resolving all doubts in favor of the appellants) that the appellants‘ ages were 16 and 14 respectively. held: ―We presume that the trial court reached this conclusion with reference to the age of Estavillo from the latter‘s personal appearance. which fact it is held to be incumbent upon the defense to establish by satisfactory evidence in order to enable the court to give an accused person the benefit of the mitigating circumstance. which even tends to establish the assertion that this appellant understated his age. not less than 20. therefore. Estavillo and Perez (10 Off. judging from the personal appearance of Rosario. paragraph 2. and this testimony stands uncontradicted. This appellant testified that he was only 16. He has shown that he has no positive information on the subject and no effort was made by the defense to prove the fact that he is entitled to the mitigating circumstance of article 9. 3. and that he was going to purchase a cedula the following january. in determining the question of the age of the defendant. with reference to the question whether Rosario was. as we have said. which is again reproduced hereunder: . as a matter of fact. we must conclude that there exists a reasonable doubt. that ―he is a youth 18 or 19 years old. There was no other testimony in the record with reference to his age. Rosario Sabacahan. when the case was tried in the court below.‖ Applying the rule enunciated in the case just cited. * * * It is true that the trial court had an opportunity to note the personal appearance of Estavillo for the purpose of determining his age. Rosario Sabacahan.‖ Court: ―If you are going to take advantage of that excuse.

sir. c. supra. If the victim is alleged to be below 12 years of age and what is sought to be proved is that she is less than 18 years old. the person‘s appearance. following Agadas. The victim and her mother. the testimony of a relative with respect to the age of the victim is sufficient to constitute proof beyond reasonable doubt in cases (a). If the victim is alleged to be below 7 years of age and what is sought to be proved is that she is less than 12 years old. nothing but proof beyond reasonable doubt of every fact necessary to constitute the crime must be substantiated. The appearance corroborates the relative‘s testimony. In such cases. For the extreme penalty of death to be upheld. loses probative value. Be it remembered that the proof of the victim‘s age in the present case spells the difference between life and death. sir. (b) and (c) above. the minority of the victim should be not only alleged but likewise proved with equal certainty and clearness as the crime itself. however. the prosecution did not offer the victim‘s certificate of live birth or similar authentic documents in evidence. Cyra May‘s testimony goes: qaqaYour name is Cyra Mae is that correct? Yes.[48] . Under the above guideline. b. the disparity between the allegation and the proof of age is so great that the court can easily determine from the appearance of the victim the veracity of the testimony. Rule 130 of the Rules on Evidence shall be sufficient under the following circumstances: a. Verily.3. such doubt must be resolved in favor of the accused. And you are 3 years old? Yes. if clear and credible. the victim‘s mere physical appearance is not enough to gauge her exact age. This is because in the era of modernism and rapid growth. Doubt as to her true age becomes greater and. as object evidence of her age. As the alleged age approaches the age sought to be proved. testified that she was only three years old at the time of the rape. If the victim is alleged to be below 3 years of age and what is sought to be proved is that she is less than 7 years old.[47] In the present case. the testimony. If the certificate of live birth or authentic document is shown to have been lost or destroyed or otherwise unavailable. of the victim‘s mother or a member of the family either by affinity or consanguinity who is qualified to testify on matters respecting pedigree such as the exact age or date of birth of the offended party pursuant to Section 40.

reasonable doubt exists. and is sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua. defined and punished by Article 335 (3) of the Revised Penal Code.. Branch 96. He is ordered to pay private complainant. and Azcuna. Bellosillo. When was she born? In Manila. cannot be accorded much weight and. Sandoval-Gutierrez. and Corona. Callejo.J. as object evidence. .That of her mother goes: Q A Q A How old was your daughter when there things happened? 3 and ½ years old. is present.000.000. that the victim was below twelve years of age at the time of the commission of the offense.[49] Because of the vast disparity between the alleged age (three years old) and the age sought to be proved (below twelve years). Puno. however. the amount of P50. concur. In line with settled jurisprudence.000... insufficient.. Panganiban. Carpio. following Pruna. JJ. C.00. Austria-Martinez. In addition. 1992. Quisumbing. the civil indemnity awarded by the trial court is increased to P50. SO ORDERED. exists that the second element of statutory rape. Mendoza. JJ.00. Here. May 10. Vitug.00 as civil indemnity and P50. Whether the victim was below seven years old. the testimony of the mother is. by itself. Jr. Cyra May is entitled to an award of moral damages in the amount ofP50.00 as moral damages. Accused-appellant Ronnie Rullepa y Guinto is found GUILTY of Statutory Rape. A mature three and a half-year old can easily be mistaken for an underdeveloped seven-year old. the trial court would have had no difficulty ascertaining the victim‘s age from her appearance. is AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION. i. Cyra May Buenafe y Francisco. Ynares-Santiago.. Davide. As it has not been established with moral certainty that Cyra May was below seven years old at the time of the commission of the offense. is another matter. as amended. The appearance of the victim.. therefore. Sr. Only the penalty of reclusion perpetua can be imposed upon him. on leave.000. the Decision of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. accused-appellant cannot be sentenced to suffer the death penalty. No reasonable doubt.e.[50] WHEREFORE.

1998.7600 Value P148.3422 hectares of agricultural land situated in San Felipe. the PARAD rendered its Decision affirming the Landbank‘s valuation. DECISION SANDOVAL-GUTIERREZ.A. 6.000.19 25.A. Petitioners therein prayed for a compensation ofP100. Series of 1992. SPOUSES VICENTE BANAL and LEONIDAS ARENAS-BANAL. Branch 40. T-6296. a petition for determination of just compensation. Camarines Norte.2330 hectares (5.[3] the Land Bank of thePhilippines[4] (Landbank). A portion of the land consisting of 6. Impleaded as respondents were the DAR and the Landbank. or an aggregate amount of P623.675.[1] as amended. 2004] LANDBANK OF THE PHILIPPINES. No. Series of 1994. petitioner. respondents.36 ========== P173. Basud. July 20.918. 11.) No.00 per hectare for both coconut land and riceland.243. Eventually. In accordance with the formula prescribed in DAR Administrative Order No. the parties submitted to the RTC the following admissions of facts: (1) the subject property is governed by the provisions of . 6806. designated as a Special Agrarian Court.4730 0. otherwise known as the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988. 143276.: Spouses Vicente and Leonidas Banal.7600 planted to palay) was compulsorily acquired by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) pursuant to Republic Act (R. respondents filed with the Regional Trial Court (RTC). are the registered owners of 19. pursuant to Section 16(d) of R. petitioner. 6657. Camarines Norte covered by Transfer Certificate of Title No. Daet. During the pre-trial on September 23. respondents.[2] as amended by DAR Administrative Order No. a summary administrative proceeding was conducted before the Provincial Agrarian Reform Adjudicator (PARAD) to determine the valuation of the land.000.THIRD DIVISION [G. made the following valuation of the property: Acquired property Coconut land Riceland Area in hectares 5. vs.R. docketed as Civil Case No. as amended.55 Respondents rejected the above valuation. 6657.4730 of which is planted to coconut and 0. J. Dissatisfied with the Decision of the PARAD.00. Thus.

The court further awarded compounded interest at P79.R. 667 9.7600 hectares of riceland the sum of FORTY-SIX THOUSAND PESOS (P46. et al.‖).137.00) in cash and in bonds in the proportion provided by law. the court issued an Order dispensing with the hearing and directing the parties to submit their respective memoranda.4730 hectares of coconut land the sum of SIX HUNDRED FIFTY-SEVEN THOUSAND ONE HUNDRED THIRTY-SEVEN PESOS (P657.000. Ordering respondent Landbank to pay the petitioners.[6] In its Decision dated February 5. judgment is hereby rendered as follows: 1.A.[5] On the same day after the pre-trial. the spouses Dr. using the following formula: For the coconut land 1.00) in cash and in bonds in the proportion provided by law.137. and (3) the Landbank deposited the provisional compensation based on the valuation made by the DAR.‖ In determining the valuation of the land. 3844 ) [8] For the riceland . the trial court computed the just compensation for the coconut land at P657. Average Gross Production (AGP) x . which is beyond respondents‘ valuation of P623. and Ordering respondent Landbank to pay the petitioners the sum of SEVENTY-NINE THOUSAND SEVEN HUNDRED THIRTY-TWO PESOS (P79. 2. Ordering respondent Landbank to pay the petitioners for the .732.00 and for the riceland at P46. DAR.00 in cash. (2) it was distributed to the farmers-beneficiaries. or a total of P703. [7] 2. as amended.00.70 (price per kilo of coconut) = Net Income (NI) NI / 6% = Price Per Hectare (PPH) (applying the capitalization formula under Republic Act No. The dispositive portion of the Decision reads: ―WHEREFORE. IT IS SO ORDERED.000.00. ―Luz Rodriguez vs.732.00. 1999.00) as the compounded interest in cash. 6657.70 x 9.137. for the 5. 3. Vicente Banal and Leonidas Arenas-Banal. the trial court based the same on the facts established in another case pending before it (Civil Case No.000.

‖[18] . which provides: ―SEC. the Landbank and other interested parties to submit evidence as to the just compensation for the land. the Appellate Court rendered a Decision[10] affirming in toto the judgment of the trial court. Quasi-Judicial Powers of the DAR. 50. – The DAR is hereby vested with primary jurisdiction to determine and adjudicate agrarian reform matters and shall have exclusive original jurisdiction over all matters involving the implementation of agrarian reform. SP No.5 x AGP x Government Support Price (GSP) = Land Value (LV) or PPH (using the formula under Executive Order No.[16] These functions by the DAR are in accordance with its quasi-judicial powers under Section 50 of R. 2. 52163.[11] Hence.[14] In case the landowner rejects the offer or fails to reply thereto. 228 ) [9] AGP x 6% compounded annually for 26 years x GSP = Interest (pursuant to DAR AO No. As earlier mentioned. under Section 1 of Executive Order No. 2000. The Landbank‘s motion for reconsideration was likewise denied. as amended. Series of 1994) Forthwith.1. 13. 405 (1990). the Landbank shall pay him the purchase price of the land after he executes and delivers a deed of transfer and surrenders the certificate of title in favor of the government. this petition for review on certiorari. 2.A. the Landbank is charged ―primarily‖ with ―the determination of the land valuation and compensation for all private lands suitable for agriculture under the Voluntary Offer to Sell or Compulsory Acquisition arrangement…‖ For its part. docketed as CA-G. the DAR makes an offer to the landowner. The fundamental issue for our resolution is whether the Court of Appeals erred in sustaining the trial court‘s valuation of the land.[12] Based on the Landbank‘s valuation of the land.‖ A party who disagrees with the decision of the DAR adjudicator may bring the matter to the RTC designated as a Special Agrarian Court[17] ―for final determination of just compensation. 6657. To begin with. On March 20. the DAR adjudicator[15] conducts summary administrative proceedings to determine the compensation for the land by requiring the landowner. there was no trial on the merits. the DAR relies on the determination of the land valuation and compensation by the Landbank. x x x. the Landbank filed with the Court of Appeals a petition for review.[13] If the landowner accepts the offer. except those falling under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).R.

– In determining just compensation. as well as the non-payment of taxes or loans secured from any government financing institution on the said land.6) + (CS x 0.A. and to file a written report t hereof x x x. 6.1 When the CS factor is not present and CNI and MV are applicable. Determination of Just Compensation.9) + (MV x 0.1) A. The social and economic benefits contributed by the farmers and the farmworkers and by the Government to the property. 11. 6657. thus: ―Sec.3) + (MV x 0. the current value of like properties.2 When the CNI factor is not present. the formula shall be: LV = (CS x 0. A. the sworn valuation by the owner.3 When both the CS and CNI are not present and only MV is applicable.A. as amended. 6. and the assessment made by government assessors shall be considered. including the valuation of properties.9) + (MV x 0. as amended. the formula shall be: LV = (CNI x 0.1) LV = Land Value CNI = Capitalized Net Income CS = Comparable Sales MV = Market Value per Tax Declaration The above formula shall be used if all the three factors are present.‖ These factors have been translated into a basic formula in DAR Administrative Order No. the tax declarations. investigate and ascertain facts relevant to the dispute. on its own initiative or at the instance of any of the parties. it is mandated to apply the Rules of Court[19] and. the RTC is required to consider several factors enumerated in Section 17 of R. Series of 1994. the cost of acquisition of the land. 6657. the formula shall be: LV = MV x 2‖ .1) A. as amended. 17. and CS and MV are applicable. Series of 1992. issued pursuant to the DAR‘s rule-making power to carry out the object and purposes of R.[21] The formula stated in DAR Administrative Order No. ―appoint one or more commissioners to examine. is as follows: ―LV = (CNI x 0. relevant and applicable.In the proceedings before the RTC. its nature. as amended by DAR Administrative Order No. actual use and income. shall be considered as additional factors to determine its valuation.‖[20] In determining just compensation.

6679 also for just compensation for coconut lands and Riceland situated at Basud. 5. the assessment made by government assessors.A. In the present case. 4. Such action is grossly erroneous since the determination of just compensation involves the examination of the following factors specified in Section 17 of R. Obviously. thus: ―x x x.. 7.the value fixed therein was 1. Firstly. we consider 506. 2. as amended: 1.95 kilos average gross production per year per hectare to be very low considering that farm practice for coconut lands is harvest every forty-five days. the social and economic benefits contributed by the farmers and the farmworkers and by the government to the property.52 kilos per annum per hectare for coconut land and the price per kilo is P8. the sworn valuation by the owner. Section 58 of the same law even authorizes the Special Agrarian Courts to appoint commissioners for such purpose.Here.95 kilos only. its nature. 3. Secondly.4730 hectares. the current value of like properties. in concluding that the valuation of respondents‘ property is P703. the RTC failed to observe the basic rules of procedure and the fundamental requirements in determining just compensation for the property. but in the very recent case of Luz Rodriguez vs. 6. In fact. if any.137. these factors involve factual matters which can be established only during a hearing wherein the contending parties present their respective evidence. the RTC.061. defendants determined the average gross production per year at 506.82. 6657. and the non-payment of taxes or loans secured from any government financing institution on the said land. filed and decided by this court in Civil Case No. DAR. actual use and income. but in the instant case the price per kilo is P9. the tax declarations. merely took judicial notice of the average production figures in the Rodriguez case pending before it and applied the same to this case without conducting a hearing and worse. the cost of the acquisition of the land. it dispensed with the hearing and merely ordered the parties to submit their respective memoranda. We cannot also comprehended why in .00. to underscore the intricate nature of determining the valuation of the land.70. Camarines Norte wherein also the lands in the aboveentitled case are situated. without the knowledge or consent of the parties. et al. In the case x x x of the coconut portion of the land 5.

But as already noted. The value of the riceland therefore in this case is 46 cavans x 2. The compounded interest on the 46 cavans for 26 years is 199. At P400. Camarines Norte.A.000. We believe that it is more fair to adapt the 1. [24] They may only do so ―in the absence of objection‖ and ―with the knowledge of the opposing party.19 divided by 6%. [22] ―PARC Resolution 94-24-1 of 25 October 1994.000 kilos or 60 cavans per year. the average gross production a year of 506. compelling this court then to adapt 1.00 per hectare.‖ (emphasis added) [23] Well-settled is the rule that courts are not authorized to take judicial notice of the contents of the records of other cases even when said cases have been tried or are pending in the same court or before the same judge.70 per kilo as this is the value that Landbank fixed for this case. granted interest on the compensation at 6% compounded annually.00.52 kilos per hectare per year as average gross production.204.70 equals P7.069.204.‖ [25] which are not obtaining here. the defendants fixed the average gross production of palay at 3.00 per cavan.4730 hectares is P657.061. Therefore. 3844 to the net income of P7. In the Rodriguez case. 27 as of October 21.the Rodriguez case and in this case there is a great variance in average production per year when in the two cases the lands are both coconut lands and in the same place of Basud. Applying the capitalization formula of R. the legal rate of interest.4730 hectares. then the . ―The Riceland taken under Presidential Decree No. the value of the compounded interest is P79. The court is also constrained to apply this yearly palay production in the Rodriguez case to the case at bar. the just compensation for the 5.00.00 equals P46. the area of the coconut land taken under CARP is 5. implemented by DAR AO 13.19 per hectare.137. We have to apply also the price of P9.732. . equals P120.7600 hectare. If in the Rodriguez case the Landbank fixed the average gross production of 3000 kilos or 60 cavans of palay per year.061 kilos when the coconut land in both cases are in the same town of Basud.061 x . Camarines Norte. ―The net income of the coconut land is equal to 70% of the gross income.061 kilos as the average gross production a year of the coconut land in this case.5 x P400. xxx xxx xxx ―As shown in the Memorandum of Landbank in this case.7600 hectare in this case would be 46 cavans. the net income of the coconut land is 1. 1972 has an area of . So.00.96 kilos per hectare fixed by Landbank is too low as compared to the Rodriguez case which was 1.70 x 9.33 cavans.

on its own initiative or on request of a party. the trial court shall consider the factors provided under Section 17 of R. 228 whose owners have not been compensated. the Rules of Court shall apply to all proceedings before the Special Agrarian Courts. (DAR Administrative Order No. as amended. or on request of a party. While the determination of just compensation involves the exercise of judicial discretion. as amended. 13. however.A.A. and respondents have been paid the provisional compensation thereof.Furthermore. What the trial court should have applied is the formula in DAR Administrative Order No. 6.‖ (emphasis added) The RTC failed to observe the above provisions. as stipulated during the pre-trial. and in granting compounded interest pursuant to DAR Administrative Order No. we deem it proper to remand this case to the RTC for trial on the merits wherein the parties may present their respective evidence. usufructuary. Thus. 3844 governs agricultural leasehold relation between ―the person who furnishes the landholding. Lastly. ―After the trial. 6. civil law lessee. and the person who personally cultivates the same.‖[29] Here. may announce its intention to take judicial notice of any matter and allow the parties to be heard thereon. 3844. as . as amended. while R. 3. Section 3. either as owner.A. Series of 1994. such discretion must be discharged within the bounds of the law.[27] as amended. Series of 1992. Here. as amended by DAR Administrative Order No. on its own initiative.A.11). 13. The formula prescribed by the DAR in Administrative Order No.[28] It must be stressed that EO No. the RTC erred in applying the formula prescribed under Executive Order (EO) No. the proper court. In this regard. the RTC wantonly disregarded R. when hearing necessary. 228 covers private agricultural lands primarily devoted to rice and corn. mentioned earlier. As regards the award of compounded interest. Series of 1994 does not apply to the subject land but to those lands taken under Presidential Decree No. Judicial notice. as earlier stated. Rule 129 of the Revised Rules on Evidence is explicit on the necessity of a hearing before a court takes judicial notice of a certain matter. 228[26] and R. No. – During the trial. and its implementing rules and regulations. as amended by DAR Administrative Order No. in determining the valuation of the property. and before judgment or on appeal. may take judicial notice of any matter and allow the parties to be heard thereon if such matter is decisive of a material issue in the case. In sum. suffice it to state that DAR Administrative Order No. or legal possessor. 27 [30] and Executive Order No.A. thus: ―SEC. we find that the Court of Appeals and the RTC erred in determining the valuation of the subject land. 6. 11 discussed earlier. In this case. 6657. In determining the valuation of the subject property. the court. 6657. 6657. the land is planted to coconut and rice and does not involve agricultural leasehold relation. the property is covered by R.

6806 is REMANDED to the RTC. encumber. Camarines Norte. (Chairman)..amended by DAR Administrative Order No. the petition is GRANTED. assign. WHEREFORE. In 1978. They averred that Eusebio’s deed of assignment and deed of mortgage were clouds on their title which should be nullified. Eusebio executed a deed of assignment of rights over one-half of the property in favor of respondent who proceeded to occupy the front half portion. SO ORDERED. The assailed Decision of the Court of Appeals dated March 20. the trial court may appoint one or more commissioners to examine. at any time. No. On June 17. lease. 150712 May 2.and was survived by his children. Series of 1994. J. Respondent continued to occupy the front half portion through his tenant. 11. 1996. title was issued in Eusebio’s name over the entire property. and Carpio-Morales. settled on a government lot owned by the People’s Homesite and Housing Corporation (PHHC). concur.R. shall be used in the valuation of the land.R. in any manner whatsoever. SP No. ESTRELLA PIGAO. The trial judge is directed to observe strictly the procedures specified above in determining the proper valuation of the subject property. herein petitioners. petitioners filed a case in the RTC of Quezon City against respondent and Ymata wherein they sought to quiet their title over the entire lot and to recover possession of the front half portion. On January 29. In 1973. the subject lot was included in the extrajudicial settlement of Eusebio’s estate and a new title was issued for the entire lot in the name of petitioners. al. upon its own initiative. for trial on the merits with dispatch. on leave. Corona. et. In 1970." To support their claim. the late Eusebio Pigao and his family. sublet or in any other manner affect his right under this contract. 52163 is REVERSED. Eusebio executed a deed of mortgage over the same half-portion of the property in favor of respondent. Petitioners failed to present during the trial the conditional contract to sell between Eusebio and PHHC which they claimed . Gil Ymata. This affidavit was duly annotated on said title. A contract to sell was entered into by Eusebio and PHHC. respondent executed an affidavit of adverse claim over the front half portion of the lot registered in Eusebio’s name. they request this Court to take judicial notice of the fact that the pro-forma conditional contracts-to. Furthermore. Branch 40. in whole or in part. In 1988. investigate and ascertain facts relevant to the dispute. Petitioners’ contend that when the final deed of sale was issued by PHHC in favor of Eusebio in 1973. Eusebio died. petitioners were issued a reconstituted title in the name of Eusebio which no longer carried the annotation of the adverse claim of respondent. this deed contained a prohibition against the alienation of the lot that the applicant agree “(d) not to sell. In 1959. without first obtaining the written consent of the Corporation. Civil Case No.. The RTC ruled in favor of petitioners: CA reversed the RTC decision in favor of respondent. 2006 FACTS: In 1947. JJ. or at the instance of any of the parties.SAMUEL RABANILLO G.sell between PHHC and applicants. mortgage. Panganiban. after the Office of the Register of Deeds of Quezon City was gutted by fire. vs. Daet. 1979. 2000 in CA-G. In 1992.

which petitioners are presenting for the first time. and (3) it must be known to be within the limits of jurisdiction of the court. and the opposing counsel given an opportunity to object to it or crossexamine the witness called upon to prove or identify it. This document is not among the matters the law mandatorily requires us to take judicial notice of. it must be formally offered. . But even assuming that it were. A document. The opposing party will be deprived of his chance to examine the document and object to its admissibility. Besides. A formal offer is necessary since judges are required to base their findings of fact and judgment only — and strictly — upon the evidence offered by the parties at the trial. this document does not even pertain to the lot and parties involved here. It is too late to present it now when nothing prevented petitioners from introducing it before. What they submitted to this Court was a copy of a conditional contract to sell between a certain Armando Bernabe and the PHHC pertaining to a lot located at 94 K5th St.that they did not have a copy thereof. The pertinent provisions of the Revised Rules of Court on the inclusion on appeal of documentary evidence or exhibits in the records cannot be stretched as to include such pleadings or documents not offered at the hearing of the case.. Accordingly. Otherwise. it is neither relevant nor material evidence. it should have been presented during trial and formally offered as evidence. ISSUES: WON the said conditional contract to sell between Armando Bernabe and PHHC may be given judicial notice HELD: NO. We cannot take cognizance of this document – the conditional contract to sell between Bernabe and the PHHC alleged to be the pro-forma contract used by PHHC with its applicants . Care must be taken that the requisite notoriety exists and every reasonable doubt on the subject should be promptly resolved in the negative. then it would substantially affect the outcome of the case so respondent should have been given the chance to scrutinize the document and object to it during the trial of the case. Kamuning. We have held that: Matters of judicial notice have three material requisites: (1) the matter must be one of common and general knowledge. Quezon City to prove the existence of the aforementioned condition. Neither can we consider it of public knowledge nor capable of unquestionable demonstration nor ought to be known to judges because of their judicial functions. (2) it must be well and authoritatively settled and not doubtful or uncertain. The appellate court will have difficulty reviewing documents not previously scrutinized by the court below. or any article for that matter. Respondent objects to this attempt of petitioners to seek admission of evidence which was presented neither during trial nor on appeal. for this document to be properly considered by us. The power of taking judicial notice is to be exercised by courts with caution. (emphasis supplied) Consequently. we would be denying due process of law to respondent. is not evidence when it is simply marked for identification. To allow a party to attach any document to his pleading and then expect the court to consider it as evidence may draw unwarranted consequences.

R. must personally exercise. Any transfer of rights. Transfer Certificate of Title No.: This petition for review seeks the reversal of the decision1 of the Court of Appeals (CA) dated October 29. 2006 ESTRELLA PIGAO. Petitioners. ISABELITA ABAD. Under PHHC rules. must be in line with the policy of PHHC which was to provide "decent housing for those who may be found unable otherwise to provide themselves therewith. Stated otherwise. there is no proof that respondent would have been allowed to avail of the preferential rights exclusively granted to bona fide occupants of PHHC-owned lots like Eusebio. CV No. It should therefore be struck down as null and void. DECISION CORONA. Thus. 60069. it could not be transferred to just another person. the PHHC was clothed with authority to determine if a person was qualified to purchase a residential lot from it. the decision rendered in Civil Case No." Thus. Q-96-26270 on February 27. Respondent. as determined by PHHC. ROMEO PIGAO. SAMUEL RABANILLO. As a personal right. as a bona fide occupant of the subject lot. As prayed for in the answer. frustrated the public policy of the government. VIRGILIO PIGAO and EVANGELINE KIUNISALA. EMMANUEL PIGAO. had a vested right to buy the property. preference for the purchase of residential lots from the PHHC was accorded to bona fide occupants of such lots. to be valid. No.DEED OF ASSIGNMENT: NULL AND VOID for being contrary to public policy. J. who was not a bona fide occupant of the lot. This did not. the dispositive portion of which read: WHEREFORE. specially one who was unqualified to avail of it. The right to purchase was a personal right that the qualified applicant.R. 2001 in CA-G. any transfer of an applicant’s right to buy a lot was invalid if done without the consent of PHHC. 56210 over the 240 square-meter lot located at 92 (now 102) K-5th Street.25 There is no showing that the PHHC’s approval for the assignment of half of the lot to respondent was ever obtained. Kamuning. CESAR PIGAO. The same policy was enunciated by the terms of the deed of sale. 150712 May 2. TERESITA PIGAO. give him the unbridled freedom to transfer his right to a third party. Eusebio. Republic of the Philippines SUPREME COURT Manila SECOND DIVISION G. PURITA SARTIGA. 1998 is hereby REVERSED and SET ASIDE. however. Quezon City issued in the name of Eusebio Pigao‘s children is hereby ordered CANCELLED and the Register of Deeds . the assignment of rights by Eusebio to respondent. Undoubtedly. vs.

the PHHC issued a deed of sale over the entire lot in favor of Eusebio. after the Office of the Register of Deeds of Quezon City was gutted by fire. 56210 and declaring the deed of assignment issued by the late Eusebio Pigao in favor of [respondent] null and void. petitioners‘ father. 197941 was issued in Eusebio‘s name.4 Eusebio applied for the purchase of the subject lot and a contract to sell for a consideration ofP1. 27287. together with his family. Respondent continued to occupy the front half portion through his tenant.19 was thereafter entered into by Eusebio and PHHC. Kamuning. the late Eusebio Pigao. herein petitioners. TCT No. 1996. 2. Eusebio died and was survived by his children. Sometime in 1947. petitioners instituted civil case no. In 1959. RT-11374 was issued.000. This was approved in 1990 and TCT No. Q-96-26270 in the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Quezon City.5 The RTC ruled in favor of petitioners: WHEREFORE. In 1978. They averred that Eusebio‘s deed of assignment and deed of mortgage were clouds on their title which should be nullified. for a consideration of P1. respondent executed an affidavit of adverse claim over the front half portion of the lot registered in Eusebio‘s name. against respondent and Ymata wherein they sought to quiet their title over the entire lot and to recover possession of the front half portion. As a consequence.022. The parcel of land used to be government property owned by the People‘s Homesite and Housing Corporation (PHHC). Let a copy of this decision be furnished the Register of Deeds of Quezon City for proper action. 1979. After the amortizations on the subject lot were fully paid in 1973. In 1970. petitioners executed an extrajudicial settlement of Eusebio‘s estate among themselves. judgment is hereby rendered in the following: 1.of Quezon City is hereby ordered to ISSUE a new one in lieu thereof in the names of both Eusebio Pigao‘s children and Samuel Rabanillo. or to compel . 197941. 56210 was issued for the entire lot in the name of petitioners. Eusebio executed a deed of assignment of rights over one-half of the property in favor of respondent. petitioner Estrella Pigao applied for the reconstitution of the original of TCT No. with the front half portion of the lot pertaining to the latter and the back half portion pertaining to the former. Ordering [petitioners] to pay [respondent] the value of the house and improvements thereon in the event that they choose to appropriate the same in which case [respondent] is given the right of retention until he has been reimbursed by [petitioners]. This affidavit was duly annotated on TCT No. 197941 that was burned. Declaring [petitioners] the absolute owners of the entire land described in TCT No. Gil Ymata. On January 29. Consequently. On June 17. Quezon City.2 The antecedent facts follow. and paid the amortizations for the said portion. established a residential building thereon. Branch 95. including the entire subject lot. Eusebio executed a deed of mortgage over the same half-portion of the property in favor of respondent. Respondent proceeded to occupy the front half portion. settled on a 240 square meter lot located at 92 (now 102) K-5th Street. SO ORDERED. In 1992.3 under Transfer Certificate of Title (TCT) No. In 1988. This reconstituted title no longer carried the annotation of the adverse claim of respondent. still in the name of Eusebio. TCT No.

141 (CA 141)8otherwise known as the Public Land Act. nor shall they become liable to the satisfaction of any debt contracted prior to the expiration of said period. Petitioners argue that the lot subject of this case was public land granted by the PHHC to their predecessor. units. was applicable: Sec. Dismissing the case against defendant Gil Ymata for lack of cause of action there being no privity of contract between him and [petitioners]. associations.. the entire period from the date of approval of Eusebio‘s application to purchase up to five years from and after the date of issuance of the patent to him in 1973. 118.[respondent] to buy the land in case they choose not to. In the latter case. they contend that Section 118 of Commonwealth Act No. Dismissing both [petitioners‘] and [respondent‘s] claims for damages and attorney‘s fees there being no satisfactory warrant thereto. (emphasis supplied) xxx xxx xxx Petitioners assert that the deed of assignment was null and void because it was entered into during the prohibited period. or corporations. and 5. 3. lands acquired under free patent or homestead provisions shall not be subject to encumbrance or alienation from the date of the approval of the application and for a term of five years from and after the date of issuance of the patent or grant.10 . THE [CA] ERRED IN DECLARING THAT A RELATIONSHIP OF IMPLIED TRUST OVER THE [ONE-HALF] (1/2) PORTION OF THE SUBJECT LOT WAS CREATED BETWEEN EUSEBIO PIGAO AND [RESPONDENT]. Except in favor of the Government or any of its branches. Petitioners filed this petition on the following grounds: I. or institutions. No pronouncements as to costs.7 The first issue before us is the validity of the deed of assignment whereby Eusebio assigned to respondent his rights to half of the lot. Respondent counters that CA 141 did not apply because it covered only homestead or sales patents. 4. [respondent] cannot be compelled to buy the land if the value thereof is higher than the value of the improvements. Hence. II. the CA reversed the RTC decision and ruled in favor of respondent.6 As stated earlier. IT IS SO ORDERED. Eusebio. THE [CA] ERRED IN DECLARING THAT THE SUBJECT DEED OF ASSIGNMENT IS VALID AND THAT THERE IS NO PROHIBITION [AGAINST] THE SALE [OF] RIGHTS OVER THE AWARDED LOT MADE BY EUSEBIO PIGAO.e.9 i. but the improvements or crops on the land may be mortgaged or pledged to qualified persons.

for this document to be properly considered by us. It went on to conclude that the deed of assignment was perfectly valid since Eusebio was under no prohibition to sell such right. without first obtaining the written consent of the Corporation. held that what was assigned by Eusebio in 1959 was his right to buy.. 27287. The power of taking judicial notice is to be exercised by courts with caution. it should have been presented during trial and formally offered as evidence. This document is not among the matters the law mandatorily requires us to take judicial notice of. It was owned by PHHC. a government corporation. Care must be taken that the requisite notoriety exists and every reasonable doubt on the subject should be promptly resolved in the negative.16 In fact. Respondent objects to this attempt of petitioners to seek admission of evidence which was presented neither during trial nor on appeal.net It was not disputed that Eusebio and respondent entered into a deed of assignment in 1959. The deed of assignment itself explicitly stated that the property was "owned by the PHHC.12 under TCT No. we would be denying due process of law to respondent: . in whole or in part. they claimed that they did not have a copy thereof." Although they admitted that they failed to present during the trial the conditional contract to sell between Eusebio and PHHC. at any time. Quezon City17 to prove the existence of the aforementioned condition.15 The CA.21 (emphasis supplied) Consequently. what they submitted to this Court was a copy of a conditional contract to sell between a certain Armando Bernabe and the PHHC pertaining to a lot located at 94 K-5th St. assign. Otherwise. the lot in dispute was neither homestead land nor one acquired through patent."14 And when the (final) deed of sale was issued by PHHC in favor of Eusebio in 1973. Petitioners insist there was such a prohibition.which petitioners are presenting for the first time. title to the lot was still in the name of PHHC.We agree that CA 141 was inapplicable. shall be made or registered without the written consent of the Vendor.19 Neither can we consider it of public knowledge nor capable of unquestionable demonstration nor ought to be known to judges because of their judicial functions. encumber. mortgage. sublet or in any other manner affect his right under this contract. and (3) it must be known to be within the limits of jurisdiction of the court. To support their claim. this deed contained a prohibition against the alienation of the lot: (2) Within a period of one year from the issuance of the Certificate of Title by virtue of this deed.11 Here. in whole or in part. no transfer or alienation whatsoever of the property subject hereof. (2) it must be well and authoritatively settled and not doubtful or uncertain. lease. however. The proscription under CA 141 on re-sale within the fiveyear restricted period referred to free patents and homestead lands only. We cannot take cognizance of this document – the conditional contract to sell between Bernabe and the PHHC alleged to be the pro-forma contract used by PHHC with its applicants . and such transfer or alienation may be made only in favor of persons qualified to acquire residential lands under the laws of the Philippines. they request this Court to take judicial notice of the fact that the pro-forma conditional contracts-to. Kamuning.sell between PHHC and applicants for the purchase of its lots contained a condition stating that "the applicant agree(d) not to sell.18 We agree with respondent. in any manner whatsoever. At that time.13 1avvphil. long before PHHC executed a (final) deed of sale in favor of Eusebio in 1973.20 We have held that: Matters of judicial notice have three material requisites: (1) the matter must be one of common and general knowledge. own and occupy the front half portion of the lot and not the lot itself.

" Thus. A formal offer is necessary since judges are required to base their findings of fact and judgment only — and strictly — upon the evidence offered by the parties at the trial. specially one who was unqualified to avail of it. Nevertheless. we hold that the deed of assignment between Eusebio and respondent is null and void for being contrary to public policy. As a personal right. must be in line with the policy of PHHC which was to provide "decent housing for those who may be found unable otherwise to provide themselves therewith. and the opposing counsel given an opportunity to object to it or crossexamine the witness called upon to prove or identify it. had a vested right to buy the property. Any transfer of rights. the PHHC was clothed with authority to determine if a person was qualified to purchase a residential lot from it. lease and sell lands and construct. The pertinent provisions of the Revised Rules of Court on the inclusion on appeal of documentary evidence or exhibits in the records cannot be stretched as to include such pleadings or documents not offered at the hearing of the case. frustrated the public policy of the government. It should therefore be struck down as null and void. preference for the purchase of residential lots from the PHHC was accorded to bona fide occupants of such lots.22 Besides. subdivide. it could not be transferred to just another person. this document does not even pertain to the lot and parties involved here. not respondent who was not even given a chance to object as the documents were never offered in evidence. Undoubtedly. Thus. It is too late to present it now when nothing prevented petitioners from introducing it before. The opposing party will be deprived of his chance to examine the document and object to its admissibility. develop.25 There is no showing that the PHHC‘s approval for the assignment of half of the lot to respondent was ever obtained. Under PHHC rules. any transfer of an applicant‘s right to buy a lot was invalid if done without the consent of PHHC. Stated otherwise.24 (emphasis supplied) Eusebio. is not evidence when it is simply marked for identification. This did not. or any article for that matter. who was not a bona fide occupant of the lot. it is neither relevant nor material evidence. then it would substantially affect the outcome of the case so respondent should have been given the chance to scrutinize the document and object to it during the trial of the case. however. To allow a party to attach any document to his pleading and then expect the court to consider it as evidence may draw unwarranted consequences. The same policy was enunciated by the terms of the deed of sale. it must be formally offered. must personally exercise. as a bona fide occupant of the subject lot. the assignment of rights by Eusebio to respondent. xxx If [petitioners] neglected to offer [any document] in evidence. The appellate court will have difficulty reviewing documents not previously scrutinized by the court below.23 This policy was supported by the PHHC charter given that one of the purposes of the PHHC was: to acquire. [they] only have themselves to blame. A document. The right to purchase was a personal right that the qualified applicant. to be valid. as determined by PHHC. improve. Accordingly.It is settled that courts will only consider as evidence that which has been formally offered. . give him the unbridled freedom to transfer his right to a third party. there is no proof that respondent would have been allowed to avail of the preferential rights exclusively granted to bona fide occupants of PHHC-owned lots like Eusebio. however vital [it] may be. lease and sell buildings or any interest therein in the cities and populous towns in the Philippines with the object of providing decent housing for those who may be found unable otherwise to provide themselves therewith. But even assuming that it were.

Express trusts are created by the intention of the trustor or of the parties. Per Article 1448 of the Civil Code. Resulting trusts are based on the equitable doctrine that valuable consideration and not legal title determines the equitable title or interest and are presumed always to have been contemplated by the parties. They arise from the nature or circumstances of the consideration involved in a transaction whereby one person thereby becomes invested with legal title but is obligated in equity to hold his legal title for the benefit of another. the equitable ownership of the former entitling him to the performance of certain duties and the exercise of certain powers by the latter. "there is an implied trust when property is sold. while the latter is referred to as the beneficiary. There is an implied trust when property is sold. either through implication of an intention to create a trust as a matter of law or through the imposition of the trust irrespective of. [respondent] proceeded to buy the front half portion from PHHC by paying the amortizations due thereon in exercise of the right which he purchased by way of deed of assignment. and the legal estate is granted to one party but the price is paid by another for the purpose of having the beneficial interest of the property. and even contrary to. 1448. when the purchase price for the entire lot was finally paid. while the latter is the beneficiary. Court of Appeals. who is the beneficiary. The former is the trustee. who. We do not agree with the reasoning of the CA: xxx [A]fter the execution of the deed of assignment. holds the front half portion thereof in trust for [respondent].It follows that the second issue of whether an implied trust relationship was created between Eusebio and his heirs as trustees and respondent as beneficiary must also be resolved against respondent. with the title to the entire lot issued to him. In turn. xxx xxx xxx In Morales v. xxx xxx xxx26 The CA declared that Article 1448 of the Civil Code was applicable: Art. xxx xxx xxx Trusts are either express or implied. Therefore. and the legal estate is granted to one party but the price is paid by another for the purpose of having the beneficial interest of the property. He also established his residence on this portion since he was then secure in the knowledge that he eventually will own the same portion having also purchased this right to own in the deed of assignment. the deed of its conveyance was finally executed and the title to the entire lot was issued in Eusebio Pigao‘s name. implied trusts are either resulting or constructive trusts. xxx xxx xxx . In the case at bench. an implied trust relationship was created over the front half portion between Pigao and [respondent]." The former party is referred to as the trustee. any such intention. while implied trusts come into being by operation of law.27 we extensively discussed the concept of "trust:" A trust is the legal relationship between one person having an equitable ownership in property and another person owning the legal title to such property. the trustee is Pigao.

32 However. that in which an actual contrary intention is proved. the instant petition is hereby GRANTED. CV No. their stipulations must not be contrary to law. as an exception to the law on trusts. Otherwise. There are recognized exceptions to the establishment of an implied resulting trust. To give rise to a purchase money resulting trust. SO ORDERED. even though its performance does not involve the commission of a criminal or tortious act by the trustee. morals. public order. We have already ruled that the transfer of rights by Eusebio to respondent was null and void ab initio for being contrary to public policy. The Court of Appeals decision dated October 29. and such consideration must be furnished by the alleged beneficiary of a resulting trust. it is essential that there be: 1." The parties must necessarily be subject to the same limitations on allowable stipulations in ordinary contracts. Q-96-26270 is REINSTATED. they cannot impliedly or implicitly do so in the guise of a resulting trust. "[a] trust or a provision in the terms of a trust is invalid if the enforcement of the trust or provision would be against public policy. or public policy. the presumption being that a gift was intended. an actual payment of money.. The trust is created in order to effectuate what the law presumes to have been the intention of the parties in the circumstances that the person to whom the land was conveyed holds it as trustee for the person who supplied the purchase money. good customs.30 (emphasis supplied) Admittedly. WHEREFORE. i. The first is stated in the last part of Article 1448 itself. 2. Court of Appeals:29 Otherwise stated.A resulting trust is exemplified by Article 1448 of the Civil Code xxx The trust created under the first sentence of Article 1448 is sometimes referred to as a purchase money resulting trust.R. a trust does not result. The decision of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. it would again run against public policy. or an equivalent. where A pays the purchase money and title is conveyed by absolute deed to A's child or to a person to whom A stands in loco parentis and who makes no express promise. Another exception is. Branch 95 in Civil Case No. As we held in Ramos v. What the parties then cannot expressly provide in their contracts for being contrary to law and public policy. Also where the purchase is made in violation of an existing statute and in evasion of its express provision. He also paid for the realty taxes for the said portion. . respondent shouldered half of the amortizations which were received by Eusebio‘s wife31 and paid to the PHHC for the purchase of the lot.e. this was not an implied trust wherein petitioners held the title over the front half portion in trust for respondent. no trust can result in favor of the party who is guilty of the fraud. Thus. of course. constituting valuable consideration. 60069 is REVERSED and SET ASIDE.28 Another exception to the establishment of an implied resulting trust under Article 1448 is when its enforcement contravenes public policy. property or services. 2001 in CA-G.

In an undertaking7 dated 2 July 2002 and an employment contract8 dated 4 July 2002. (MPI) is the Philippine agent of Michaelmar Shipping Services. Petitioner. J. JR. JOSE.. EIGHT (8) MONTHS Vacation Leave with Pay US$ 190. (MSSI). DECISION CARPIO. 2009 BERNARDO B. MICHAELMAR PHILS. (M)02-12-3137-00. signed a declaration10 dated 10 June 2002 stating that: .1 Duration of Contract Position Basic Monthly Salary Hours of Work Overtime OILER US$ 450. PHILIPPINES9 In connection with the employment contract.R. and MICHAELMAR SHIPPING SERVICES. Jose.00 & US$ 39. The Court of Appeals set aside the 19 January4 and 22 March5 2004 Resolutions of the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) in NLRC NCR CA No.: The Case This is a petition1 for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. Inc. Respondents. Jr.) as oiler of M/T Limar. 169606 November 27. MSSI through MPI engaged the services of Bernardo B. Jr. 105 HRS/ MOS. Inc. INC. Jose..00 & US$ 150 OWNERS BONUS Point of Hire MANILA. INC. Jr. The Facts Michaelmar Philippines. The petition challenges the 11 May 2005 Decision2 and 5 August 2005 Resolution3 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. SP No.00 FIXED OT. vs. No.R. The employment contract stated: That the employee shall be employed on board under the following terms and conditions: 1.00 TANKER ALLOWANCE 48 HOURS/WEEK US$ 386..Republic of the Philippines SUPREME COURT Manila SECOND DIVISION G. 036666-03 and reinstated the 18 June 2003 Decision6 of the Labor Arbiter in NLRC NCR OFW Case No. (Jose. 83272.

received a 96% total rating and was described as very hardworking. Jr. procured drug tests from Manila Doctors Hospital.‘s work performance for the period of 1 August to 28 November 2002. Jr. On 8 October 2002. began performing his duties on board the M/T Limar on 21 August 2002.12 S. was informed about the result of his drug test and was asked if he was taking any medication. the Labor Arbiter dismissed the complaint for lack of merit. Jose.14 He was found negative for marijuana. MPI ignored his request. The Labor Arbiter’s Ruling In her 18 June 2003 Decision. When Jose. said that he was taking Centrum vitamins. In the Sea Going Staff Appraisal Report11 on Jose Jr. M/T Limar reached the next port after the random drug test and Jose. It is established that complainant. Jose. Jr. Jose. and reliable. Therefore any seaman will be instantly dismissed if: xxx They are found to have positive trace of alcohol or any of the banned substances in any random testing sample. Jr. Jr. arrived in the Philippines. was found positive for marijuana. Jr. Jose.M. managed vessels. after an unannounced drug test conducted by the respondent principal on the officers and crew on board the vessel. Disciplinary action up to and including dismissal will be taken against any employee found to be in possession of or impaired by the use of any of the above mentioned substances. Jose. Jose. Jr. Jr. this office inclined [sic] to rule in favor of the respondents: we find that complainant’s termination from employment was valid and lawful.In order to implement the Drug and Alcohol Policy on board the managed vessels the following with [sic] apply: All alcoholic beverages. The Labor Arbiter held that: Based from the facts and evidence. Jr. Inc. Jr. Lazo Medical Clinic. Jose.. A system of random testing for any of the above banned substances will be used to enforce this policy. On 29 December 2002. was repatriated to the Philippines. It is a universally known fact the menace that drugs bring on . trustworthy. Any refusal to submit to such tests shall be deemed as a serious breach of the employment contract and shall result to the seaman‘s dismissal due to his own offense.13 and Maritime Clinic for International Services. was found positive of marijuana. On his own. a prohibited drug. banned substances and unprescribed drugs including but not limited to the following: Marijuana Cocaine Phencyclidine Amphetamines Heroin Opiates are banned from Stelmar Tankers (Management) Ltd. a random drug test was conducted on all officers and crew members of M/T Limar at the port of Curacao. Jose. he asked MPI that a drug test be conducted on him. filed with the NLRC a complaint against MPI and MSSI for illegal dismissal with claim for his salaries for the unexpired portion of the employment contract. Inc. was allowed to continue performing his duties on board the M/T Limar from 8 October to 29 November 2002.

MD". among others. violation of the drug and alcohol policy of the company carries with it the penalty of dismissal to be effected by the master of the vessel. Jr. a copy of the purported drug test result for Complainant indicates. the veracity of this purported drug test result is questionable. Jr. claimed that the Labor Arbiter committed grave abuse of discretion in ruling that he was dismissed for just cause.".R. R. the following typewritten words "Hoofd: Drs. which is an indication that the Master. On the contrary. We are therefore more inclined to believe the original results of the unannounced drug test as it was officially conducted on board the vessel rather than the subsequent testing procured by complainant on his own initiative. He was not dismissed right there and then but it was only on December 29. Indeed there is reason for the Master of the vessel to doubt . 2002. Records). the findings of the doctor on board should be given credence as he would not make a false clarification. said test result does not contain any signature. it cannot be deemed as substantial proof that Complainant violated his employer’s "no alcohol. was in doubt with the purported drug test result. For this reason that respondents would not terminate [sic] the services of complainant were it not for the fact that he violated the drug and alcohol policy of the company. much less the signature of any of the doctors whose names were printed therein (Page 45. no drug" policy." However. 2002 that he was repatriated for cause. Heath.A. A. Petronia Apotheker" and "THC-COOH POS. 2002 message to Stelmar Tanker Group. Thus.L. the handwritten word "Marihuana". The NLRC held that: Here. suggested that another drug test for complainant should be taken when the vessel arrived [sic] in Curacao next call for final findings (Page 33. "SHIP’S DOCTOR" and "29 OKT.the user as well as to others who may have got on his way. It is noted too that complainant worked on board a tanker vessel which carries toxic materials such as fuels. Moreover. and the stamped words "Dr. [H]ence. We can not also say that respondents were motivated by ill will against the complainant considering that he was appraised to be a good worker. hence. Verily. his salaries for the unexpired portion of the employment contract. gasoline and other combustible materials which require delicate and careful handling and being an oiler. It is therefore a risk that should be avoided at all cost. Jr. the first test prevails. we agree with respondents that immediate repatriation of complainant is warranted for the safety of the vessel as well as to complainant’s co-workers on board.R. the NLRC set aside the Labor Arbiter’s 18 June 2003 Decision. A. complainant is expected to be in a proper disposition. Jose. The result of the original drug test is evidence in itself and does not require additional supporting evidence except if it was shown that the drug test was conducted not in accordance with the drug testing procedure which is not obtaining in this particular case. Dr. 2002. Records). It is also noted that complainant was made aware of the results of the drug test as per Drug Test Certificate dated October 29. In fact. the Master of the vessel where Complainant worked.A Heath could not be said to have outrageously contrived the results of the complainant‘s drug test.’s dismissal was illegal and ordered MPI and MSSI to pay Jose. As to the complainant‘s contention that the ship doctor‘s report can not be relied upon in the absence of other evidence supporting the doctor‘s findings for the simple reason that the ship doctor is under the control of the principal employer. in his November 14. the same is untenable. The NLRC held that Jose.R. Jr.15 Jose. The NLRC’s Ruling In its 19 January 2004 Resolution. himself. under the POEA Standard Employment Contract as cited by the respondents (supra). appealed the Labor Arbiter‘s 18 June 2003 Decision to the NLRC. [T]hus. we find that just cause exist [sic] to justify the termination of complainant.

" referring to his personal relationship and his interactions with the rest of the ship’s staff and his attitude towards his job and how the rest of the crew regard him. Jr. (2) awarded Jose. and (4) ruled that Jose. Significantly. Truly. 2002 to November 28. Jr. Indeed. In its 22 March 2004 Resolution. and reviewed by the Master of the vessel himself on complainant’s work performance as Wiper from August 1. Respondents argue that there was no need for him to be notified of his dismissal. Respondents‘ invoke the provision in the employment contract which allows summary dismissal for cases provided therein. Jr. perfected his appeal within the reglementary period. valid or authorized cause as defined by law or contract. Inc.that Complainant was taking in the prohibited drug "marihuana. 8042. plus his salaries for the unexpired portion of his employment contract or for three (3) months for every year of the unexpired term. Such blatant violation of basic labor law principles cannot be permitted by this Office. Ability (30%). The Court of Appeals’ Ruling In its 11 May 2005 Decision. No. which provides that "In cases of termination of overseas employment without just. was legally dismissed. 1999). if Complainant had been a threat to the safety of the vessel. August 24. under the category "Behavior & Attitude (20%). indicates that out of a total score of 100% on Safety Consciousness (30%).R. Clearly. Records). Jr. Worse. Amaro. the Court of Appeals set aside the 19 January and 22 March 2004 Resolutions of the NLRC and reinstated the 18 June 2003 Decision of the Labor Arbiter. (3) awarded Jose. the NLRC denied the motion for lack of merit. 2002. vs. G. its officers and crew members. $386 overtime pay. MPI and MSSI claimed that the NLRC gravely abused its discretion when it (1) reversed the Labor Arbiter’s factual finding that Jose. whichever is less. There is no showing that Complainant‘s employer furnished him with a written notice apprising him of the particular act or omission for which his dismissal was sought and a subsequent written notice informing him of the decision to dismiss him. Respondents failed to accord Complainant due process prior to his dismissal. a worker who had been taking in prohibited drug could not have given such an excellent job performance. officers and crew members. Relative thereto. Jr. Although a contract is law between the parties. Consequently. NLRC." The Sea Going Staff Appraisal Report signed by Appraiser David A. MPI and MSSI filed with the Court of Appeals a petition17 for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court. much less any proof that Complainant was given an opportunity to answer and rebut the charges against him prior to his dismissal. he would not be been [sic] allowed to continue working almost three (3) months after his alleged offense until his repatriation on December 29. Complainant was assessed a score of 96% (Pages 30-31. 2002 which included a two-month period after the purported drug test. Respondents failed to present substantial proof that Complainant’s dismissal was with just or authorized cause. his salaries for the unexpired portion of the employment contract."16 MPI and MSSI filed a motion for reconsideration. Moreover. Records). The Court of Appeals held that: . the worker shall be entitled to the full reimbursement of his placement fee with interest of twelve percent (12%) per annum. Complainant was assessed the full score of 20% (Page 31. it is worth noting Section 10 of Republic Act No. the provisions of positive law which regulate such contracts are deemed included and shall limit and govern the relations between the parties (Asia World Recruitment. Reliability (20%) and Behavior & Attitude (20%). 113363. which belies Respondents’ insinuation that his alleged offense directly affected the safety of the vessel.

We can hardly belabor the reasons and justification for this policy. he says. has even been suggested in this particular case. therefore.The POEA standard employment contract adverted to in the labor arbiter‘s decision to which all seamen‘s contracts must adhere explicitly provides that the failure of a seaman to obey the policy warrants a penalty of dismissal which may be carried out by the master even without a notice of dismissal if there is a clear and existing danger to the safety of the vessel or the crew. National Labor Relations Commission. The regularity of the procedure observed in the administration and reporting of the tests is the very assurance of the report‘s admissibility and credibility under the laws of the evidence. and the failure or refusal of a seaman to comply with it should constitute serious misconduct or willful disobedience that is a just cause for the termination of employment under the Labor Code (Aparente vs. That the petitioners were implementing a no-alcohol. once made known to the employee. and it was a matter of course for medical reports to be issued and released by the medical officer. He undertook to comply with the policy and abide by all the relevant rules and guidelines. which are transactions made by persons in the regular course of their duty or business. In the ultimate analysis. so that it is necessary to maintain at every moment the efficiency and competence of the crew. It was under his name and with his handwritten comments that the report on the respondent came out. Without an effective no alcohol. The tests administered to the crew were routine measures of the vessel conducted to enforce its stated policy. As the labor arbiter points out. a vessel is only as seaworthy as the men who sail it. The safety of the vessel on the high seas is a matter of supreme and unavoidable concern to all — the owners. 331 SCRA 82). which. and there is no basis to suspect that these results were issued other than in the ordinary course of his duty. a reasonable and lawful order or regulation that. the crew and the riding public. . must be observed by him. including the system of random testing that would be employed to enforce it. no drug policy that was communicated to the respondent when he embarked is not in question. A number of evidence of this sort are called entries in the course of business. the seriousness and earnestness in the enforcement of the ban is highlighted by the provision of the POEA Standard Employment Contract allowing the ship master to forego the notice of dismissal requirement in effecting the repatriation of the seaman violating it. He had signed a document entitled Drug and Alcohol Declaration in which he acknowledged that alcohol beverages and unprescribed drugs such as marijuana were banned on the vessel and that any employee found possessing or using these substances would be subject to instant dismissal. parenthetically. Nothing of the sort. not all unsigned documents or papers fail the test of admissibility. There are kinds of evidence known as exceptions to the hearsay rule which need not be invariably signed by the author if it is clear that it issues from him because of necessity and under circumstances that safeguard the trustworthiness of the paper. We agree with the labor arbiter that the drug test result constitutes entries made in the ordinary or regular course of duty of a responsible officer of the vessel. the drug test report is evidence in itself and does not require additional supporting evidence except if it appears that the drug test was conducted not in accordance with drug testing procedures. Heath. The ship‘s physician at Curacao under whom the tests were conducted was admittedly Dr. xxxx Under legal rules of evidence. is the lowest rung in the ladder of evidence. the vessel‘s safety will be seriously compromised. no drug policy on board the ship. The policy is. As the labor arbiter has discerned. It is from the fact that a report or entry is a part of the regular routine work of a business or profession that it derives its value as legal evidence. We see no reason why it cannot be considered substantial evidence.

A. and the stamped words "Dr.. among others. a month had passed by after the date of the medical report before they reached the next port. Hence. claims that he was illegally dismissed from employment for two reasons: (1) there is no just cause for his dismissal because the drug test result is unsigned by the doctor. For the NLRC to annul the process because he was somehow not furnished with written notice is already being pedantic. xxxx Even assuming arguendo that there was just cause. Finally. The Issues In his petition dated 13 September 2005. Unlike the tests made at his instance. In its 5 August 2005 Resolution. the present petition. the handwritten word "Marihuana". the fact that the respondent obtained negative results in subsequent drug tests in the Philippines does not negate the findings made of his condition on board the vessel. much less the signature of any of the doctors whose name [sic] were printed therein." [sic]. We may not second-guess the judgment of the master in allowing him to remain at his post in the meantime. It is still reasonable to believe that the proper safeguards were taken and proper limitations observed during the period when the respondent remained on board. MD". Jr.R.18 Jose.L. Jose. greater than the subsequent ones. said test result does not contain any signature. [sic] Petronia Apotheker" [sic] and :THC-COOH POS. and (2) he was not afforded due process. A drug test can be negative if the user undergoes a sufficient period of abstinence before taking the test. the following: [sic] typwritten words ‗Hool: Drs. the ship captain came out in support of him and asked his superiors to give him another chance. He could not show any history of medication that could account for the traces of drugs in his system. Jr. In a motion20 dated 1 August 2007.R. The petitioners have explained that that [sic] it is usually at the next port of call where the offending crewman is made to disembark. respondents miserably failed to show that the presence of the petitioner in the vessel constitutes a clear and existing danger to the safety of the crew or the vessel. Inc. R. These developments prove that the respondent was afforded due process consistent with the exigencies of his service at sea. Consequently. therefore. Despite his lack of plausible excuses.A Heath.Then the respondent was notified of the results and allowed to explain himself. He stated that: 2. the purported drug test result cannot be deemed as substantial proof that petitioner violated his employer‘s "no alcohol. The POEA Standard Employment Contract allows the ship master to implement a repatriation for just cause without a notice of dismissal if this is necessary to avoid a clear and existing danger to the vessel. The purported drug test result conducted to petitioner indicates. the drug test on the vessel was unannounced. The credibility of the first test is. What is the importance to the respondent of the difference between a written and verbal notice when he was actually given the opportunity to be heard? x x x The working environment in a seagoing vessel is sui generis which amply justifies the difference in treatment of seamen found guilty of serious infractions at sea. In a Resolution21 dated 14 November 2007. the Court of Appeals denied the motion for lack of merit. This omission is fatal as it goes to the veracity of the said purported drug test result. x x x . no drug policy‘ [sic]. MPI and MSSI prayed that they be substituted by OSG Ship Management Manila. "SHIP‘S DOCTOR" and "29 OKT. 2002. as respondent in the present case." However. In this case. filed a motion19 for reconsideration. the Court noted the motion.

Jr.24 the Court held that: Petitioner asserts that there is a question of law involved in this appeal. The Court of Appeals gave credence to the drug test result showing that Jose. Jr. the burden is on the employer to show that the dismissal was for a just and valid cause. the Court of Appeals held that there was just cause for Jose. In a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. informing petitioner of the decision to dismiss. unfounded and on the basis of the drug test report that was not even signed by the doctor who purportedly conducted such test. Heath. There is also no proof on record that petitioner was given an opportunity to answer and rebut the charges against him prior to the dismissal. he says. In Encarnacion v. Moreover. There are kinds of evidence known as exceptions to the hearsay rule which need not be invariably signed by the author if it is clear that it issues from him because of necessity and under circumstances that safeguard the trustworthiness of the paper.23 (Emphasis supplied) Jose.22 The Court’s Ruling In its 11 May 2005 Decision. whether the questioned decision is supported by the . i.‘s dismissal. A number of evidence of this sort are called entries in the course of business. respondents failed to observe due process in terminating petitioner‘s employment. Petitioner‘s employment was terminated on the basis only of a mere allegation that is unsubstantiated.. The Court of Appeals considered the drug test result as part of entries in the course of business. and there is no basis to suspect that these results were issued other than in the ordinary course of his duty. Jr. The petition must state the law or jurisprudence and the particular ruling of the appellate court violative of such law or jurisprudence. claims that the Court of Appeals erred when it ruled that there was just cause for his dismissal. the drug test report is evidence in itself and does not require additional supporting evidence except if it appears that the drug test was conducted not in accordance with drug testing procedures. Court of Appeals. was positive for marijuana. which are transactions made by persons in the regular course of their duty or business. 5. The Court of Appeals held that: Under legal rules of evidence.e. The tests administered to the crew were routine measures of the vessel conducted to enforce its stated policy. and it was a matter of course for medical reports to be issued and released by the medical officer.xxxx It is a basic principle in Labor Law that in termination disputes. The Court is not impressed. The ship‘s physician at Curacao under whom the tests were conducted was admittedly Dr. It was under his name and with his handwritten comments that the report on the respondent came out. The appeal involves an appreciation of facts. has even been suggested in this particular case. We agree with the labor arbiter that the drug test result constitutes entries made in the ordinary or regular course of duty of a responsible officer of the vessel. a mere statement that the Court of Appeals erred is insufficient. We do not think so. not all unsigned documents or papers fail the test of admissibility. Nothing of the sort. there is also no evidence on record that the second notice. x x x xxxx x x x [T]he Honorable Labor Arbiter as well as the Honorable Court of Appeals clearly erred in ruling that there was just cause for the termination of petitioner‘s employment. As the labor arbiter points out. Furthermore. There is no evidence on record that petitioner was furnished by his employer with a written notice apprising him of the particular act or omission which is the basis for his dismissal. was served to the petitioner.

Jose. the paymaster and the president. (2) the entries were made at or near the time of the transactions to which they refer. 43. The fact that the drug test result is unsigned does not necessarily lead to the conclusion that Jose. In KAR ASIA. the appellate court observed that the same contain only the signatures of Ermina Daray and Celestino Barreto. and (5) the entries were made in the ordinary or regular course of business or duty. i. or unable to testify. did the Court of Appeals commit a reversible error in considering the trouble record of the subject telephone? Or is this within the province of the appellate court to consider? Absent grave abuse of discretion.evidence and the records of the case. It is therefore incumbent upon the respondents to adduce clear and convincing evidence in support of their claim. In disputing the probative value of the payrolls for December 1994. 1avv phi1 In Canque v. Corona.. (2) the entries were made near the time the random drug test was conducted. (Emphasis supplied) In the present case. It further opined that the payrolls presented were only copies of the approved payment. the absence of . Heath made the entries in his professional capacity and in the performance of his duty. of the Rules of Court states: SEC. by a person deceased. Here. and not copies disclosing actual payment. Inc. or near the time of the transactions to which they refer. outside the country. who was in a position to know the facts therein stated. The December 1994 payrolls contain a computation of the amounts payable to the employees for the given period. v. respectively. In other words.26 the Court admitted in evidence unsigned payrolls. and (5) the entries were made in the ordinary or regular course of business or duty. respondents‘ naked assertions without proof in corroboration will not suffice to overcome the disputable presumption. including a breakdown of the allowances and deductions on the amount due. (3) the person who made the entry was in a position to know the facts stated in the entries. The petition must specify the law or prevailing jurisprudence on the matter and the particular ruling of the appellate court violative of such law or previous doctrine laid down by the Supreme Court. all the requisites are present: (1) Dr. Jr. or unable to testify. (3) Dr. was not found positive for marijuana. Ideally. (4) Dr. Court of Appeals. but the signatures of the respondents are conspicuously missing. the signatures of the respondents should appear in the payroll as evidence of actual payment. Section 43. if such person made the entries in his professional capacity or in the performance of duty and in the ordinary or regular course of business or duty. invoking the usual reason. (4) the entries were made in a professional capacity or in the performance of a duty. In a petition for review under Rule 45. Unfortunately.25 the Court laid down the requisites for admission in evidence of entries in the course of business: (1) the person who made the entry is dead. being entries in the course of business.e. Section 43 of the Rules of Court. that the Court of Appeals has decided a question of substance not in accord with law or with applicable decisions of the Supreme Court. However. In that case. the Court held that: Entries in the payroll. Rules of Court. may be received as prima facie evidence. — Entries made at. Heath is outside the country. did not show that the Court of Appeals‘ ruling is violative of any law or jurisprudence. Jr. Heath was in a position to know the facts made in the entries. Entries in the course of business. Rule 130. this Court will not reverse the appellate court‘s findings of fact. a mere statement of the ceremonial phrase is not sufficient to confer merit on the petition. enjoy the presumption of regularity under Rule 130.

(4) the drug test result of Jose. which is one of the just causes for termination. Nothing of the sort. Drug use in the premises of the employer constitutes serious misconduct. Falcon Maritime & Allied Services. constitute just cause for his separation. Inc. and (2) the employee must be afforded due process. v. failed to show that the Court of Appeals gravely abused its discretion. The Court agrees. Heath.28 In Encarnacion. findings of fact of the appellate court will not be disturbed. Article 282(a) of the Labor Code states that the employer may terminate an employment for serious misconduct. a dereliction of duty. This Court took judicial notice of scientific findings that drug abuse can damage the mental faculties of the user. The ship‘s physician at Curacao under whom the tests were conducted was admittedly Dr. Jr. The misconduct to be serious within the meaning of the Act must be of such a grave and aggravated character and not merely trivial or unimportant. It is beyond question therefore that any employee under the influence of drugs cannot possibly continue doing his duties without posing a serious threat to the lives and property of his co-workers and even his employer. in connection with the work of the employee. (Emphasis supplied) In the present case. the employer must furnish the employee with two written notices — a notice apprising the employee of the particular act or omission for which the dismissal is sought and another notice informing the employee of the employer‘s decision to dismiss. however serious. Such misconduct. Heath was the authorized physician of M/T Limar. and implies wrongful intent and not merely an error in judgment. "unless there is a clearly grave or whimsical abuse on its part.30 the Court held that: The charge of drug use inside the company‘s premises and during working hours against petitioner constitutes serious misconduct. Misconduct is improper or wrong conduct. the Court will not disturb the Court of Appeals‘ factual findings.29 the Court held that. As the labor arbiter points out. Jr.27 Factual findings of the Court of Appeals are binding on the Court. Such requirement is not a mere formality that may be dispensed with . There are two requisites for a valid dismissal: (1) there must be just cause. the following facts are established (1) random drug tests are regularly conducted on all officers and crew members of M/T Limar. Jr. Jr. (2) a random drug test was conducted at the port of Curacao on 8 October 2002. willful in character. the drug test report is evidence in itself and does not require additional supporting evidence except if it appears that the drug test was conducted not in accordance with drug testing procedures. Absent grave abuse of discretion. It was under his name and with his handwritten comments that the report on the respondent came out. The Court of Appeals found that: The tests administered to the crew were routine measures of the vessel conducted to enforce its stated policy. (Emphasis supplied) Jose. must nevertheless. has even been suggested in this particular case. showed that he was positive for marijuana. The Supreme Court will only exercise its power of review in known exceptions such as gross misappreciation of evidence or a total void of evidence. and it was a matter of course for medical reports to be issued and released by the medical officer. Treasure Island Industrial Corporation. Heath‘s name and contained his handwritten comments. a forbidden act." Jose. In Bughaw. claims that he was not afforded due process. (3) Dr.such signatures does not necessarily lead to the conclusion that the December 1994 COLA was not received.32 the Court held that: [R]espondent failed to comply with the procedural due process required for terminating the employment of the employee.. (5) the drug test result was issued under Dr. and there is no basis to suspect that these results were issued other than in the ordinary course of his duty. It is the transgression of some established and definite rule of action.31 To meet the requirements of due process. In Talidano v. he says.

of course. This is especially true in the case of a vessel on the ocean or in a foreign port. JUDICIAL ADMISSIONS Lucido vs. The minimum requirement of due process termination proceedings. is ordered to pay Bernardo B.000 in nominal damages. 48 (1914) Judicial Admissions FACTS: The properties of Leonardo Lucido were sold on auction on Feb. Jr. the propriety of Jose. which led to the management‘s decision to terminate. The 11 May 2005 Decision and 5 August 2005 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. Jose.000 in nominal damages. On March 30. SO ORDERED. Calupitan 27 Phil. which must be complied with even with respect to seamen on board a vessel. the petition is DENIED. To meet the requirements of due process. The Labor Code does not. 83272 are AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that OSG Ship Management Manila. i. On the same day. was not given any written notice about his dismissal. consists of notice to the employees intended to be dismissed and the grant to them of an opportunity to present their own side of the alleged offense or misconduct. Rosales and Zolaivar with the consent of Lucido.. 1.‘s dismissal is not affected by the lack of written notices.at will.e. Inc. However.33 WHEREFORE. P30. 10. SP No. sold the properties to Calupitan via a public document.R. the lack of due process does not render the dismissal ineffectual but merely gives rise to the payment of P30. When the dismissal is for just cause. Calupitan and Lucido executed a document admitting the sale and that their real agreement was that redemption by Lucido can only be effected 3 . and (2) the subsequent notice after due hearing which informs the employee of the employer‘s decision to dismiss him. Jose. 1903 to Rosales and Zolaivar. (1) a notice which apprises the employee of the particular acts or omissions for which his dismissal is sought. (Emphasis supplied) In the present case. Jr. the employer must furnish the worker sought to be dismissed with two written notices before termination of employment can be legally effected. Its disregard is a matter of serious concern since it constitutes a safeguard of the highest order in response to man‘s innate sense of justice. 1903. require a formal or trial type proceeding before an erring employee may be dismissed. Jr.

years. from the date of the document. Lucido tendered the redemption price to Calupitan. For failure of the latter to surrender the properties to Lucido, this case was instituted. Calupitan claimed that the sale was not one with a right to redeem. The lower court decided in favor of Lucido.

ISSUE: Whether or not Calupitan’s original answer to the complaint may be used as evidence against him to prove that a sale with a right to redeem was in fact agreed to by both parties?

RULING: Yes, Calupitan’s original answer to the complaint expressly stated that the transaction was one of sale with right to repurchase. The Court held that its admission was proper, especially in view of the fact that it was signed by Calupitan himself, who was acting as his own attorney.

The Court cited Jones on Evidence (sec. 272, 273) which stated that although pleadings were originally considered as inadmissible as admissions because it contained only pleader‘s matter (fiction stated by counsel and sanctioned by the courts), modern tendency was to treat pleadings as statements of real issues and herein, admissions of the parties.
By: Frank John Abdon

Torres vs. Court of Appeals 11 SCRA 24 (1984) Judicial Admissions

FACTS:

This is a Petition for Review, treated as a special civil action praying that the decision of the CA be set aside. Lot no. 551 was originally owned by Margarita Torres. Margarita was married to Claro Santillan and out of this union were begotten Vicente and Antonina. Claro died. Antonina married and had six children, who, together with Vicente are the private respondents. After Claro’s death, Margarita cohabited with Leon Arbole, and out of this, petitioner Macaria Torres was born. Lot no. 551, an urban lot, was leased to Margarita, who was the actual occupant of the lot. A Sale Certificate was issued to Margarita by the Director of Lands. The purchase price was to be paid in installments. According to testimonial evidence, Leon paid the installments out of his own earnings. Before his death, Leon sold and transferred all his rights to ½ portion of the lot in favor of petitioner Macaria. Subsequently, Vicente executed an Affidavit claiming possession of Lot no. 551 and petitioned the Bureau of Lands for the issuance of title in his name. A title was then issued in the name of the legal heirs of Margarita (private respondents). On June 3, 1954, respondents filed a complaint against petitioner for forcible entry alleging that petitioner entered a portion of Lot no. 551 without their consent and constructed a house therein. The case was decided against the petitioner. On June 8, 1954, petitioner instituted an action for Partition of Lot. N0. 551 alleging that said lot was conjugal property and the she is the legitimated child of Margarita and Leon. The ejectment case and the partition case was consolidated.

The trial court ruled that the lot was paraphernal property of Maragarita and adjudicated 2/3 of the lot to respondents and 1/3 to petitioner Macaria. On Motion for Reconsideration, the decision was amended with Macaria being entitled to 4/6 of the lot. On appeal to the CA, the CA changed Macaria‘s share to ½ of the lot and declared that she is not a legitimated child.
Petitioner now alleges that although the CA is correct in declaring that she is not a legitimated child of the spouses, it has overlooked to include in its findings of facts the admission made by the respondents that she and Vicente and Antonina are brothers and sisters and they are the legal heirs and nearest of relatives of Maragarita. The admission adverted to appears in paragraph 3 of respondents’ original complaint in the Ejectment Case, which was however subsequently amended.

ISSUE: Whether or not said statement in the original complaint must be treated as a judicial admission despite the fact that the same statements no longer appears in the amended complaint?

RULING:

No, in the Amended Complaint filed by respondents in the same ejectment case, the supposed admission was deleted and in fact the statement simply read, “That plaintiffs are the legal heirs and nearest of kin of Margarita.” By virtue thereof, the amended complaint takes the place of the original. The latter is regarded as abandoned and ceases to perform any further function as a pleading. The original complaint no longer forms part of the record. If petitioner had intended to utilize the original complaint, she should have offered it in evidence. Having been amended, the original complaint lost its character as a judicial admission, which would have required no proof, and became merely an extrajudicial admission of which as evidence, required its formal offer. Contrary to petitioner’s submission, therefore, there can be no estoppel by extrajudicial admission in the original complaint, for the failure to offer it in evidence.

Teehankee, separate opinion: Such admission did not cease to be a judicial admission simply because respondents subsequently deleted the same in their amended complaint. The original complaint, although replaced by an amended complaint, does not cease to be part of the judicial record, not having been expunged therefrom.

THIRD DIVISION

[G.R. No. 119053. January 23, 1997.]

FLORENTINO ATILLO III, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS, AMANCOR, INC., and MICHELL LHUILLIER, respondents. RESOLUTION
FRANCISCO, J.:

This is a petition for review on certiorari of the decision of the respondent Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. No. 3677 promulgated on August 4, 1994 affirming in toto the decision of Branch 7 of the Regional Trial Court of Cebu City in Civil Case No. CEB9801 entitled "Florentino L. Atillo III versus Amancor, Inc. and Michell Lhuillier". The material antecedents are as follows:

On August 15, 1985, respondent Amancor, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as AMANCOR for brevity), a corporation then owned and controlled by petitioner

Florentino L. Atillo III, contracted a loan in the amount of P1,000,000.00 with Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company, secured by real estate properties owned by the petitioner. Before the said loan could be paid, petitioner entered into a Memorandum of Agreement dated June 14, 1988 (Annex "A" of the Complaint) with respondent Michell Lhuillier (hereinafter referred to as LHUILLIER for brevity) whereby the latter bought shares of stock in AMANCOR. As a consequence of the foregoing transaction, petitioner and LHUILLIER each became owner of 47% of the outstanding shares of stock of AMANCOR while the officers of the corporation owned the remaining 6%.
[1] [2]

In view of the urgent and immediate need for fresh capital to support the business operations of AMANCOR, petitioner and LHUILLIER executed another Memorandum of Agreement on February 13, 1989 (Annex "B" of the Complaint) by virtue of which LHUILLIER undertook to invest additional capital in AMANCOR. As an addendum to the foregoing, a Supplemental Memorandum of Agreement was entered into by the petitioner and LHUILLIER on March 11, 1989. Relevant to the case at bar is a stipulation in the said Supplemental Memorandum of Agreement which provides as follows:
[3] [4]

"4. F.L. Atillo III may dispose off (sic) his properties at P. del Rosario St., Cebu City which may involve pre-payment of AMANCOR'S mortgage loan to the bank estimated at 300,000.00 and while AMANCOR may not yet be in the position to repay said amount to him, it shall pay the interests to him equivalent to prevailing bank rate."
[5]

Pursuant to this stipulation, petitioner assumed AMANCOR' s outstanding loan balance of P300,000.00 with Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company. After offsetting the amount ofP300,000.00 with some of the accounts that petitioner had with AMANCOR, the amount which remained due to the petitioner was P199,888.89. Because of the failure of AMANCOR to satisfy its obligation to repay petitioner, the latter filed a complaint for collection of a sum of money docketed as Civil Case No. Ceb-9801 against AMANCOR and LHUILLIER before Branch 7 of the Regional Trial Court of Cebu City. At the pre-trial conference, petitioner, AMANCOR and LHUILLIER, assisted by their respective counsels, stipulated on the following:

"1. That the parties admit the due execution and genuineness of the Memorandum of Agreement dated 14 June 1988 (Annex A), the Memorandum of Agreement dated 13 February 1989 (Annex B) and Supplemental Agreement dated 11 March 1989 (Annex C);

Lhuillier.89 as of October 1.[8] It is from the trial court's conclusion of non-liability that petitioner appealed to respondent court.89 with interest equivalent to the bank rate prevailing as of March 11. 1989. is Michell J. x x x. if the latter is liable.[9] The respondent court found petitioner's contention bereft of merit and held in part that: "Contrary to plaintiffs-appellants (sic) allegation. Defendant Lhuillier acted only as an officer/agent of the corporation by signing the said Memorandum of Agreement. Considering the allegations in the complaint and those contained in the Memorandum of Agreement. absolved of any personal liability therefor. 1990. From the aforesaid Annexes A. the indebtedness of P199.000. ordering AMANCOR to pay petitioner the amount ofP199.2. plaintiff could have ofted (sic) to sue defendant Lhuillier in his personal capacity the whole amount of indebtedness and not implead the defendant corporation as co-defendant. That the defendants admit that the claim of the plaintiff amounted to P199.00 with Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company" x x x.888. pay the plaintiff?" (Underscoring supplied. however. alone. xxx xxx xxx x x x [T]he indebtedness was incurred by the defendant corporation as a legal entity to pay the mortgage loan. As it is.. INC." [10] ." [6] and submitted the following issues to be resolved by the trial court: "a.89 was incurred by defendant AMANCOR.. INC.888. A thorough study of the records shows that plaintiff's cause of action for collection of a sum of money arose from "his payment of the defendant corporation's outstanding loan balance of P300. Lhuillier personally liable to the plaintiff? b. he should not have offsetted (sic) some of his accounts with the defendant corporation. B and C. LHUILLIER was. LHUILLIER should have been declared jointly and severally liable with AMANCOR. the respondent court properly ruled that the liability was incurred by defendant AMANCOR. the trial court rendered a decision in favor of the petitioner. What rate of interests shall the defendant corporation and Michell J. We grant that if plaintiff really believes that the indebtedness was incurred by defendant Lhuillier in his personal capacity.888. arguing therein that as LHUILLIER signed the Memorandum of Agreement without the official participation nor ratification of AMANCOR. singly.) [7] On the basis of the stipulation of facts and the written arguments of the parties.

xxx xxx xxx 3. by his judicial admissions. has affirmed that he has personal liability in a certain transaction.14 . petitioner contends that the decision of the respondent court absolving LHUILLIER of personal liability is manifest error for being contrary to law. petitioner brought this instant petition submitting the following issue for the resolution of this Court: "When a party. Inc. The admission may be contradicted only by showing that it was made through palpable mistake or that no such admission was made. at most. should be ignored." [13] We find petitioner's contention to be without merit and the reliance on the general rule regarding judicial admissions enunciated by the abovementioned provision of law and jurisprudence misplaced. does not require proof. the general rule that a judicial admission is conclusive upon the party making it and does not require proof admits of two exceptions: 1) when it is shown that the admission was made through palpable mistake. it was between plaintiff and Lhuillier personally without the official participation of Amancor. unenforceable insofar as the subject claim of plaintiff is concerned. Inc." [12] And on the basis of such admission.11. In all the subject dealings. may a court rule against such an admission despite clear indications that it was not affected by mistakes palpable or otherwise?" [11] Petitioner claims that LHUILLIER made a judicial admission of his personal liability in his Answer wherein he stated that: "3.Aggrieved by the decision of respondent court. whether objection is interposed by the party or not x x x. made by a party in the course of the proceedings in the same case. did not formally ratify nor acceded (sic) to the personal agreement between plaintiff and Lhuillier through no fault of the latter. Since the board of Amancor." Petitioner would want to further strengthen his contention by adverting to the consistent pronouncement of this Court that: "x x x an admission made in the pleadings cannot be controverted by the party making such admission and are conclusive as to him. As provided for in Section 4 of Rule 129 of the Rules of Court. the corporation is not bound and the actionable documents are. verbal or written. particularly Section 4 of Rule 129 of the Rules of Court which provides that: "An admission. and 2) when it is shown that no such admission was in fact . and that all proofs submitted by him contrary thereto or inconsistent therewith.

This may be interpreted as to mean 'not in the sense in which the admission is made to appear. pending improvement of Amancor's finances. . 4 of Annex C. if a party invokes an 'admission' by an adverse party. Petitioner is seemingly misleading this Court by isolating paragraph 3. while Amancor may not yet be in the position to repay said amount to him.11 of his Answer "out of context".[14] The latter exception allows one to contradict an admission by denying that he made such an admission. "For instance. At most.made.11 has reference to the fact that in all investments made with AMANCOR through stock purchases.11 of the said Answer from the preceding paragraphs. for the corporation to repay plaintiff the amount of the pre. ". the question of whether or not LHUILLIER is personally liable for the obligation of AMANCOR to petitioner. The foregoing act of . petitioner was well aware that LHUILLIER had never admitted personal liability for the said obligation. In fact." [Underscoring supplied. Lhuillier did not engage to personally pay the corporate loans secured by plaintiff's property as to release the property to plaintiff. then he should not have offset his accounts with those of AMANCOR's. [16] Paragraph 3.11 is part of the affirmative allegations recounting how LHUILLIER was persuaded to invest in AMANCOR which was previously owned and managed by petitioner. . for said corporation to pay interest at prevailing bank rate. x x x. if petitioner really believed that the liability was incurred by LHUILLIER in his personal capacity.) [18] Furthermore. therefore. 4 of the actionable Supplemental Memorandum of Agreement dated 11 March 1989 (Annex C). 12 of the Actionable Memorandum of Agreement dated 13 February 1989 (Annex B) and par.terminated corporate loans with the bank and.13. and in the succeeding paragraphs of the said Answer asserted the following: "3.' That is the reason for the modifier 'such'. in delineating the issues to be resolved by the trial court. IT shall pay the interests to him equivalent to prevailing bank rate. but cites the admission 'out of context'. both parties submitted for the determination of the court. as explicitly stated in the aforesaid par. As evident in the wordings of par. as correctly observed by respondent court." "3. LHUILLIER had categorically denied personal liability for AMANCOR's corporate debts. A careful scrutiny of the Answer in its entirety will show that paragraph 3. petitioner appears to have taken the admissions made by LHUILLIER in paragraph 3.11 has nothing to do with the obligation of AMANCOR to petitioner which is the subject of the present case.] [15] Here.12.[19] Moreover. On the contrary. [17] It is more than obvious that paragraph 3. Lhuillier x x x only agreed. only petitioner and LHUILLIER dealt with each other. then the one making the admission may show that he made no 'such' admission." (Underscoring supplied. Contrary to petitioner's allegations. or that his admission was taken out of context.

petitioner is a clear indication that he recognized AMANCOR and not LHUILLIER as the obligor. that the allegations made by Ariosto Santos in his pleadings and in his declarations in open court differed will not militate against the findings herein made nor support the reversal by respondent court. Furthermore. or the veil of corporation fiction may be pierced and the individual shareholder may be personally liable (sic) to the obligations of the corporation only when the corporation is used as ‗a cloak or cover for fraud or illegality." [21] . As ARIOSTO SANTOS himself. it is clear that in spite of the presence of judicial admissions in a party's pleading. Applicable by analogy is our ruling in the case of Gardner vs. respondent court did not err when it refused to pierce the veil of corporate fiction. but this is not an absolute and inflexible rule. however. We hold that such admission is not conclusive upon him. the trial court is still given leeway to consider other evidence presented. had repudiated the defenses he had raised in his ANSWER and against his own interest. his testimony is deserving of weight and credence. As distinctly stated in the stipulation of facts entered into during the pre-trial conference. plaintiff-appellant failed to show that defendant Lhuillier acted otherwise than what is required of him as an agent of a corporation. An answer is a mere statement of fact which the party filing it expects to prove. in open court. Both the Trial Court and the Appellate Court believed in his credibility and we find no reason to overturn their factual findings thereon. thereby absolving LHUILLIER of liability for corporate obligations and deciding the question in this wise: "The separate personality of the corporation may be disregarded. "B" and "C" of the Complaint. Thus: "The fact." (Underscoring supplied. the trial court correctly relied on the provisions contained in the said Memoranda of Agreement when it absolved LHUILLIER of personal liability for the obligation of AMANCOR to petitioner. or where necessary to achieve equity or when necessary for the protection of the creditors. but it is not evidence. Court of Appeals which allowed a party's testimony in open court to override admissions he made in his answer. This rule should apply with more reason when the parties had agreed to submit an issue for resolution of the trial court on the basis of the evidence presented. As a general rule. This situation does not obtain in this case. In the case at bar. Thus.) [20] Prescinding from the foregoing. on the basis of the same evidence abovementioned. It does not appear either that defendant-appellee Michel (sic) Lhuillier is jointly and severally liable with AMANCOR INC. facts alleged in a party's pleading are deemed admissions of that party and are binding upon it. Granting arguendo that LHUILLIER had in fact made the alleged admission of personal liability in his Answer. the parties agreed that the determination of LHUILLIER's liability shall be based on the Memoranda of Agreement designated as ANNEXES "A". absent an express stipulation to that effect and sans clear and convincing evidence as to his personal liability. or to work an injustice.

Ferdinand E. MARCOS (REPRESENTED BY HIS ESTATE/HEIRS: IMELDA R.373. JJ. are final and conclusive and may not be reviewed on appeal. EN BANC [G.. MARCOS. HONORABLE SANDIGANBAYAN (SPECIAL FIRST DIVISION).: This is a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court seeking to (1) set aside the Resolution dated January 31. J. concur.J. conclusive upon us pursuant to the well established rule that factual findings of the Court of Appeals.R..60 as of January 31.The foregoing pronouncement is based on factual findings of the lower court which were upheld by the respondent court. 1991. No. the decision appealed from is hereby AFFIRMED and this petition is DENIED. finding no reversible error.. DECISION CORONA. through the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG). vs. and (2) reinstate its earlier decision dated September 19. (Chairman). SO ORDERED. petitioner Republic. Melo. Jr.. 2000 which forfeited in favor of petitioner Republic of the Philippines (Republic) the amount held in escrow in the Philippine National Bank (PNB) in the aggregate amount of US$658. FERDINAND E. FERDINAND R.[22] ACCORDINGLY. and Panganiban. 152154. MARCOS. respondents. C. 2002 issued by the Special First Division of the Sandiganbayan in Civil Case No. 2003] REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES. represented by the Office of the Solicitor General . 0141 entitled Republic of the Philippines vs. MARIA IMELDA [IMEE] MARCOS-MANOTOC. Narvasa. JR. and which are thus.175. al. supported by substantial evidence on the record. AND IRENE MARCOS-ARANETA) AND IMELDA ROMUALDEZ MARCOS. 2002. Davide. July 15. petitioner. et. Marcos. BACKGROUND OF THE CASE On December 17.

[3] 14[4] and 14-A. by virtue of the freeze order issued by the PCGG. Maria Imelda M. cause the inventory of and distribute all assets presumed to be owned by the Marcos family under the conditions contained therein.‖ The said decision of the Swiss Federal Supreme Court affirmed the decision of Zurich District Attorney Peter Consandey. . collate. 1990. represented by his Estate/Heirs and Imelda R. other lawful income as well as income from legitimately acquired property. petitioner sought the declaration of the aggregate amount of US$356 million (now estimated to be more than US$658 million inclusive of interest) deposited in escrow in the PNB. a General Agreement and the Supplemental Agreements[6] dated December 28. Marcos. The treasury notes are frozen at the Central Bank of the Philippines. Rosalys-Aguamina Foundation accounts and Maler Foundation accounts. Xandy-Wintrop: Charis-Scolari-Valamo-Spinus. that the Three Hundred Fifty-six Million U. 1995 for the approval of said agreements and for the enforcement thereof. Manotoc. Ferdinand E. 0141 entitled Republic of the Philippines vs. The General Agreement/Supplemental Agreements sought to identify. as ill-gotten wealth. respondents Imelda R. Marcos.(OSG). 1993 were executed by the Marcos children and then PCGG Chairman Magtanggol Gunigundo for a global settlement of the assets of the Marcos family. filed their answer. The funds were previously held by the following five account groups. dollars (US$356 million) belongs in principle to the Republic of the Philippines provided certain conditionalities are met x x x. the petition sought the forfeiture of US$25 million and US$5 million in treasury notes which exceeded the Marcos couple‘s salaries. Jr. Araneta and Ferdinand R.[2] 2.pursuant to RA 1379[1] in relation to Executive Order Nos. 1. Marcos. Marcos. The aforementioned General Agreement specified in one of its premises or ―whereas clauses‖ the fact that petitioner ―obtained a judgment from the Swiss Federal Tribunal on December 21. In addition. respondent Marcos children filed a motion dated December 7. now Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. 1993. filed a petition for forfeiture before the Sandiganbayan. Before the case was set for pre-trial.S. docketed as Civil Case No. Trinidad-Rayby-Palmy Foundation accounts. granting petitioner‘s request for legal [7] assistance. using various foreign foundations in certain Swiss banks: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) Azio-Verso-Vibur Foundation accounts. Subsequently. Irene M. Consandey declared the various deposits in the name of the enumerated foundations to be of illegal provenance and ordered that they be frozen to await the final verdict in favor of the parties entitled to restitution.Avertina Foundation accounts.[5] In said case. On October 18.

NO. respondent Marcos children moved that the funds be placed incustodia legis because the deposit in escrow in the PNB was allegedly in danger of dissipation by petitioner. 1995. on August 10. filed another motion for summary judgment pertaining to the forfeiture of the US$356 million. based on the following grounds: I THE ESSENTIAL FACTS WHICH WARRANT THE FORFEITURE OF THE FUNDS SUBJECT OF THE PETITION UNDER R. the case was set for trial. Mrs. Meanwhile. THUS WARRANTING THE RENDITION OF SUMMARY JUDGMENT. 2000. Subsequently. Switzerland. 1379 ARE ADMITTED BY RESPONDENTS IN THEIR PLEADINGS AND OTHER SUBMISSIONS MADE IN THE COURSE OF THE PROCEEDING. 1999 and January 21. After the pre-trial and the issuance of the pre-trial order and supplemental pre-trial order dated October 28. Marcos filed a manifestation on May 26. was presented as witness for the purpose of establishing the partial implementation of said agreements. Respondent Ferdinand. 1998. On appeal by the Marcoses. [8] . After several resettings. In its resolution dated November 20. the funds were remitted to the Philippines in escrow. In 1998. 1998 claiming she was not a party to the motion for approval of the Compromise Agreement and that she owned 90% of the funds with the remaining 10% belonging to the Marcos estate. On October 18. an additional request for the immediate transfer of the deposits to an escrow account in the PNB. upheld the ruling of the District Attorney of Zurich granting the request for the transfer of the funds.‖ Respondent Mrs. Jr. Respondent Mrs. petitioner. Jr. II RESPONDENTS‘ ADMISSION MADE DURING THE PRE-TRIAL THAT THEY DO NOT HAVE ANY INTEREST OR OWNERSHIP OVER THE FUNDS SUBJECT OF THE ACTION FOR FORFEITURE TENDERS NO GENUINE ISSUE OR CONTROVERSY AS TO ANY MATERIAL FACT IN THE PRESENT ACTION. in a decision dated December 10. respectively. Manotoc. 2000. Marcos filed her opposition thereto which was later adopted by respondents Mrs. petitioner filed with the District Attorney in Zurich. 1996. petitioner filed a motion for summary judgment and/or judgment on the pleadings. the Swiss Federal Supreme Court.Hearings were conducted by the Sandiganbayan on the motion to approve the General/Supplemental Agreements. on March 10. Araneta and Ferdinand. The request was granted. The Sandiganbayan. the Sandiganbayan denied petitioner‘s motion for summary judgment and/or judgment on the pleadings on the ground that the motion to approve the compromise agreement ―(took) precedence over the motion for summary judgment.A. granted the motion. in its resolution dated September 8. 1997. 1997.

On March 24. after the pre-trial conference. . Mrs. the Sandiganbayan granted petitioner‘s motion for summary judgment: CONCLUSION There is no issue of fact which calls for the presentation of evidence. 2002. Araneta and Ferdinand. declaring the Swiss deposits which were transferred to and now deposited in escrow at the Philippine National Bank in the total aggregate value equivalent to US$627. Manotoc and Ferdinand. Jr. In a resolution[11] dated January 31. [10] Respondent Mrs. Manotoc. which opposition was later adopted by her co-respondents Mrs. Manotoc and Ferdinand. Respondent Mrs. In a decision[9] dated September 19. Jr. Mrs. judgment is hereby rendered in favor of the Republic of the Philippines and against the respondents. Marcos. Araneta filed a manifestation dated October 4. certain facts were established. 2000. the Sandiganbayan reversed its September 19. Mrs. 2000. Likewise. Mrs. thus denying petitioner‘s motion for summary judgment: CONCLUSION In sum. filed their own motion for reconsideration dated October 5. DISPOSITION WHEREFORE. petitioner filed its opposition thereto. 2000. Jr. warranting a summary judgment on the funds sought to be forfeited. Subsequently. the evidence offered for summary judgment of the case did not prove that the money in the Swiss Banks belonged to the Marcos spouses because no legal proof exists in the record as to the ownership by the Marcoses of the funds in escrow from the Swiss Banks.544.95 as of August 31. Marcos filed her opposition to the petitioner‘s motion for summary judgment. The Swiss deposits which were transmitted to and now held in escrow at the PNB are deemed unlawfully acquired as ill-gotten wealth. 2000. The Motion for Summary Judgment is hereby granted.Petitioner contended that. Marcos filed a motion for reconsideration dated September 26. 2000 together with the increments thereof forfeited in favor of the State.608. 2000 adopting the motion for reconsideration of Mrs. a hearing on the motion for summary judgment was conducted. 2000 decision.

MARCOS AND IN THE MOTION TO PLACE THE RES IN CUSTODIA LEGIS. MARCOS AS PUBLIC OFFICIALS BUT ALSO THE EXTENT OF THEIR SALARIES AS SUCH PUBLIC OFFICIALS. MARCOS AND IMELDA R. ADMISSION IN THE GENERAL / SUPPLEMENTAL AGREEMENTS THEY SIGNED AND SOUGHT TO IMPLEMENT. AND ADMISSION IN THE UNDERTAKING TO PAY THE HUMAN RIGHTS VICTIMS. B. In filing the same. perforce. PRIVATE RESPONDENTS ALSO ADMITTED THE EXISTENCE OF THE SWISS DEPOSITS AND THEIR OWNERSHIP THEREOF: 1. committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction considering that -I PETITIONER WAS ABLE TO PROVE ITS CASE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE REQUISITES OF SECTIONS 2 AND 3 OF R. ADMISSION IN A MANIFESTATION OF PRIVATE RESPONDENT IMELDA R. . in reversing its September 19.A. 2000 is reconsidered and set aside. must also have been without basis. WERE PROHIBITED FROM ENGAGING IN THE MANAGEMENT OF FOUNDATIONS. MARCOS AND IMELDA R. the decision of this Court dated September 19. 2000 decision. 2. 4. PRIVATE RESPONDENTS CATEGORICALLY ADMITTED NOT ONLY THE PERSONAL CIRCUMSTANCES OF FERDINAND E. petitioner argues that the Sandiganbayan. 1379: A. the instant petition.The basis for the forfeiture in favor of the government cannot be deemed to have been established and our judgment thereon. [12] Hence. WHEREFORE. MARCOS AS PUBLIC OFFICIALS. 3. NO. ADMISSIONS IN PRIVATE RESPONDENTS‘ ANSWER. PETITIONER HAS PROVED THE EXTENT OF THE LEGITIMATE INCOME OF FERDINAND E. and this case is now being set for further proceedings. C. WHO UNDER THE CONSTITUTION.

AND THIS FURTHER JUSTIFIED THE RENDITION OF A SUMMARY JUDGMENT. asserts that nowhere in the respondents‘ motions for reconsideration and supplemental motion for reconsideration were the authenticity. 1999 WHEN IT DENIED THE MOTION TO RELEASE ONE HUNDRED FIFTY MILLION US DOLLARS ($150. accuracy and admissibility of the Swiss decisions ever challenged.D. PRIVATE RESPONDENTS ABANDONED THEIR SHAM DEFENSE OF LEGITIMATE ACQUISITION. in the main. II SUMMARY JUDGMENT IS PROPER SINCE PRIVATE RESPONDENTS HAVE NOT RAISED ANY GENUINE ISSUE OF FACT CONSIDERING THAT: A. PRIVATE RESPONDENTS‘ DEFENSE THAT SWISS DEPOSITS WERE LAWFULLY ACQUIRED DOES NOT ONLY FAIL TO TENDER AN ISSUE BUT IS CLEARLY A SHAM.00) TO THE HUMAN RIGHTS VICTIMS. it was incorrect for the Sandiganbayan to use the issue of lack of authenticated translations of the decisions of the Swiss Federal Supreme Court as the basis for .000. AND B. [13] Petitioner.000. IN SUBSEQUENTLY DISCLAIMING OWNERSHIP OF THE SWISS DEPOSITS. III THE FOREIGN FOUNDATIONS NEED NOT BE IMPLEADED. PETITIONER HAS ESTABLISHED A PRIMA FACIE PRESUMPTION OF UNLAWFULLY ACQUIRED WEALTH. WHEN EARLIER THE SANDIGANBAYAN HAS QUOTED EXTENSIVELY A PORTION OF THE TRANSLATION OF ONE OF THESE SWISS DECISIONS IN HIS ―PONENCIA‖ DATED JULY 29. Otherwise stated. IV THE HONORABLE PRESIDING JUSTICE COMMITTED GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION IN REVERSING HIMSELF ON THE GROUND THAT ORIGINAL COPIES OF THE AUTHENTICATED SWISS DECISIONS AND THEIR ―AUTHENTICATED TRANSLATIONS‖ HAVE NOT BEEN SUBMITTED TO THE COURT. V PRIVATE RESPONDENTS ARE DEEMED TO HAVE WAIVED THEIR OBJECTION TO THE AUTHENTICITY OF THE SWISS FEDERAL SUPREME COURT DECISIONS.

According to Mrs. its petition before this Court must be dismissed. the comment of Mrs. B. Mrs. [14] Mrs. Mrs. PETITIONER HAS A PLAIN. this particular issue relating to the translation of the Swiss court decisions could not be resurrected anymore because said decisions had been previously utilized by the Sandiganbayan itself in resolving a ―decisive issue‖ before it. 2002. 2002. Manotoc and Ferdinand. Likewise. Corollarily. Jr. Since petitioner has a plain. Araneta were filed on May 27. speedy and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law in view of the resolution of the Sandiganbayan dated January 31. speedy and adequate remedy. that is. petitioner now elevates the matter to this Court. Marcos asserts that the petition should be denied on the following grounds: A. Manotoc and Ferdinand. to proceed to trial and submit authenticated translations of the Swiss decisions. Petitioner faults the Sandiganbayan for questioning the non-production of the authenticated translations of the Swiss Federal Supreme Court decisions as this was a marginal and technical matter that did not diminish by any measure the conclusiveness and strength of what had been proven and admitted before the Sandiganbayan. in their comment. and the separate comment of Mrs. SPEEDY. prayed for the dismissal of the petition on the grounds that: (A) BY THE TIME PETITIONER FILED ITS MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT ON 10 MARCH 2000. . a petition for certiorari which does not comply with the requirements of the rules may be dismissed. that is. Furthermore.reversing itself because respondents themselves never raised this issue in their motions for reconsideration and supplemental motion for reconsideration. Mrs. THE SANDIGANBAYAN DID NOT ABUSE ITS DISCRETION IN SETTING THE CASE FOR FURTHER PROCEEDINGS. Jr. Marcos contends that petitioner has a plain. After several motions for extension which were all granted. Marcos filed her comment to the petition on May 22. that the funds deposited by the Marcoses constituted ill-gotten wealth and thus belonged to the Filipino people. In compliance with the order of this Court. IT WAS ALREADY BARRED FROM DOING SO. Marcos. Instead of availing of said remedy.. 2000 directing petitioner to submit the authenticated translations of the Swiss decisions. the Sandiganbayan‘s ruling to set the case for further proceedings cannot a nd should not be considered a capricious and whimsical exercise of judgment. AND ADEQUATE REMEDY AT THE SANDIGANBAYAN.

is a penal statute. Thus. .A. for the sake of argument. 1379 with respect to the identification. By its positive acts and express admissions prior to filing the Motion for Summary Judgment on 10 March 1990. the applicable law. As such. are mandatory in nature. petitioner has failed to establish the other proper earnings and income from legitimately acquired property of the Marcos couple over and above their government salaries. by the time the Motion was filed on 10 March 2000. Petitioner has failed to establish the third and fourth essential elements in Section 3 of R. and approximate amount of the property which the Marcos couple allegedly ―acquired during their incumbency‖. THE SANDIGANBAYAN IS CORRECT IN RULING THAT PETITIONER HAS NOT YET ESTABLISHED A PRIMA FACIE CASE FOR THE FORFEITURE OF THE SWISS FUNDS. petitioner had legally bound itself to go to trial on the basis of existing issues. it clearly waived whatever right it had to move for summary judgment. 1379. 1379. Even assuming. (B) (2) EVEN ASSUMING THAT PETITIONER WAS NOT LEGALLY BARRED FROM FILING THE MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT. (2) (3) In contravention of the essential element stated in Section 3 (e) of R. estoppel by laches had already set in against petitioner. particularly the essential elements stated in section 3 thereof.A. Thus. that the fact of acquisition has been proven. (1) Republic Act No. ownership. These should be strictly construed against petitioner and liberally in favor of private respondents. petitioner has categorically admitted that it has no evidence showing how much of the Swiss funds was acquired ―during the incumbency‖ of the Marcos couple from 31 December 1965 to 25 February 1986. its provisions.(1) The Motion for Summary Judgment was based on private respondents‘ Answer and other documents that had long been in the records of the case. (a) (b) Petitioner has failed to prove that the Marcos couple ―acquired‖ or own the Swiss funds.

be no premature forfeiture of the funds. the General and Supplemental Agreements. Mrs. AND PRIVATE RESPONDENTS HAVE NOT MADE ANY JUDICIAL ADMISSION THAT WOULD HAVE FREED IT FROM ITS BURDEN OF PROOF. THEREFORE. R. THE SANDIGANBAYAN DID NOT COMMIT GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION IN DENYING THE MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT. Araneta manifests that she is as eager as respondent Sandiganbayan or any interested person to have the Swiss Court . 1379. claims that obviously petitioner is unable to comply with a very plain requirement of respondent Sandiganbayan.A.(4) Since petitioner failed to prove the three essential elements provided in paragraphs (c) (d). Respondent Mrs. in her comment to the petition. are expressly barred from being admissible in evidence against private respondents. there would be a demonstrable showing that no such ―judicial admissions‖ were made by private respondents. save that pertaining to the authentication of the translated Swiss Court decisions. The instant petition is allegedly an attempt to elevate to this Court matters. and (e) of Section 3. therefore. [15] [16] [17] (C) IT WAS ONLY BY ARBITRARILY ISOLATING AND THEN TAKING CERTAIN STATEMENTS MADE BY PRIVATE RESPONDENTS OUT OF CONTEXT THAT PETITIONER WAS ABLE TO TREAT THESE AS ―JUDICIAL ADMISSIONS‖ SUFFICIENT TO ESTABLISH A PRIMA FACIE AND THEREAFTER A CONCLUSIVE CASE TO JUSTIFY THE FORFEITURE OF THE SWISS FUNDS. as well as the other written and testimonial statements submitted in relation thereto. Araneta. are irrelevant and impertinent as far as this Court is concerned. (D) (2) SINCE PETITIONER HAS NOT (YET) PROVEN ALL THE ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS TO ESTABLISH A PRIMA FACIE CASE FOR FORFEITURE. DOES NOT LIE. the inescapable conclusion is that the prima facie presumption of unlawful acquisition of the Swiss funds has not yet attached. [18] For her part. (1) Under Section 27. There can. issues and incidents which should be properly threshed out at the Sandiganbayan. Rule 130 of the Rules of Court. Araneta. To respondent Mrs. CERTIORARI. Had petitioner bothered to weigh the alleged admissions together with the other statements on record. ESPECIALLY AS THIS COURT IS NOT A TRIER OF FACTS. all other matters.

Normally. including the takeover or sequestration of all business enterprises and entities owned or controlled by them during his administration. we would like to stress that we are treating this case as an exception to the general rule governing petitions for certiorari. authority. This should stop all speculations on what indeed is contained therein. 1986.[20] But where the case is undeniably ingrained with immense public interest. connections or relationship. Araneta prays that the petition be denied for lack of merit and for raising matters which. this Court has seen fit to set aside technicalities and formalities that merely serve to delay or impede judicious resolution. 2002 should be threshed out. their relatives. Marcos. Thus. by taking undue advantage of their public office and/or using their powers. not mere legalisms or perfection of form.[21] One of the foremost concerns of the Aquino Government in February 1986 was the recovery of the unexplained or ill-gotten wealth reputedly amassed by former President and Mrs. public policy and deep historical repercussions. respondent Mrs. influence. not Rule 65. the very first Executive Order (EO) issued by then President Corazon Aquino upon her assumption to office after the ouster of the Marcoses was EO No. relatives. PROPRIETY OF PETITIONER’S ACTION FOR CERTIORARI But before this Court discusses the more relevant issues. She says the authenticated official English version of the Swiss Court decisions should be presented. should now be relentlessly and . Marcos. decisions of the Sandiganbayan are brought before this Court under Rule 45. in elaborated fashion. the question regarding the propriety of petitioner Republic's action for certiorari under Rule 65[19] of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure assailing the Sandiganbayan Resolution dated January 21. certiorari is allowed notwithstanding the existence and availability of the remedy of appeal. subordinates and close associates. In all the alleged ill-gotten wealth cases filed by the PCGG. or nearly so. are impertinent and improper before this Court. Lobregat[22]: surely x x x an enterprise "of great pith and moment". But substantial justice to the Filipino people and to all parties concerned." The urgency of this undertaking was tersely described by this Court in Republic vs. Ferdinand E. It created the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) and charged it with the task of assisting the President in the "recovery of all ill-gotten wealth accumulated by former President Ferdinand E. At the outset. Thus. friends and business associates. whether located in the Philippines or abroad.the national coffers were empty. it was attended by "great expectations". 1. it was initiated not only out of considerations of simple justice but also out of sheer necessity .decisions officially translated in our known language. issued on February 28. his immediate family. This Court prefers to have such cases resolved on the merits at the Sandiganbayan. directly or through nominees.

ISSUES BEFORE THIS COURT The crucial issues which this Court must resolve are: (1) whether or not respondents raised any genuine issue of fact which would either justify or negate summary judgment.[26] The theory of summary judgment is that. Almost two decades have passed since the government initiated its search for and reversion of such ill-gotten wealth. depositions or other documents. misappropriation. fraud or illicit conduct.A party seeking to recover upon a claim. (1) THE PROPRIETY OF SUMMARY JUDGMENT We hold that respondent Marcoses failed to raise any genuine issue of fact in their pleadings. supported by affidavits. In the early case of Auman vs. depositions or admissions for a summary judgment in his favor upon all or any part thereof. the Court is justified in dispensing with the trial and rendering summary judgment for petitioner Republic. with notice upon the adverse party who may in turn file an opposition supported also by affidavits. summary judgment should take place as a matter of right. This is after the court summarily hears both parties with their respective proofs and finds that there is no genuine issue between them. move with supporting affidavits. and (2) whether or not petitioner Republic was able to prove its case for forfeiture in accordance with Sections 2 and 3 of RA 1379. Summary judgment for claimant. The Solicitor General made a very thorough presentation of its case for forfeiture: . summary judgment was described as a judgment which a court may render before trial but after both parties have pleaded. The definitive resolution of such cases on the merits is thus long overdue. depositions or other documents. [23] We thus take cognizance of this case and settle with finality all the issues therein. counterclaim. accumulation. Summary judgment is sanctioned in this jurisdiction by Section 1. let it be brought out now. if it is demonstrated by affidavits.. Rule 35 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure: SECTION 1. free from all the delaying technicalities and annoying procedural sidetracks. on motion of petitioner Republic. at any time after the pleading in answer thereto has been served. depositions or admissions that those issues are not genuine but sham or fictitious. Estenzo[24]. It is ordered by the court upon application by one party. Let the ownership of these funds and other assets be finally determined and resolved with dispatch. [25] Summary judgment is proper when there is clearly no genuine issue as to any material fact in the action. If there is proof of illegal acquisition. or cross-claim or to obtain a declaratory relief may.firmly pursued. Thus. although an answer may on its face appear to tender issues requiring trial.

Imelda R. as Minister of Human Settlements from June 1976 to February 22-25. Schedule B: Schedule of Income Tax Paid (Annex ―T-1‖ hereof). 1365-055-1. Respondent Imelda Romualdez Marcos (Imelda. Senate President and President of the Republic of the Philippines from December 31. 1965 up to his ouster by direct action of the people of EDSA on February 22-25. x x x xxx xxx xxx 11. Marcos. 1986. however.xxx 4. For the years 1976 until 1984. the returns were filed under Tax Identification No.000 a year and from 1977 to 1985. At the outset. 1986 was P75. The data contained in the ITRs and Balance Sheet filed by the ―Marcoses are summarized and attached to the reports in the following schedules: Schedule A: Schedule of Income (Annex ―T‖ hereof). 13. P100. ANALYSIS OF RESPONDENTS LEGITIMATE INCOME xxx 12. Respondent Ferdinand E. . Based on available documents. the ITRs of the Marcoses for the years 1965-1975 were filed under Tax Identification No. She likewise served once as a member of the Interim Batasang Pambansa during the early years of martial law from 1978 to 1984 and as Metro Manila Governor in concurrent capacity as Minister of Human Settlements. the total salaries of former President Marcos as President form 1966 to 1976 was P60. for short) the former First Lady who ruled with FM during the 14-year martial law regime. 5. Senator.000 a year. occupied the position of Minister of Human Settlements from June 1976 up to the peaceful revolution in February 22-25. while that of the former First Lady.000 a year xxx. 1986. M 6221-J 1117-A-9. it must be pointed out that based on the Official Report of the Minister of Budget. Marcos (now deceased and represented by his Estate/Heirs) was a public officer for several decades continuously and without interruption as Congressman.

414. the amount of P10.00 100.00 in reported income from legal practice. Likewise.581.109.00 15.484. much less the P10. Of the P11. On the other hand.71% 149. there is nothing on record that will show any known Marcos client as he has no known law office.408.Schedule C: Schedule of Net Disposable Income (Annex ―T-2‖ hereof).521.01% 11.109.325.00 and P1.65M that he decided to later recognize as income.. FM‘s official salary pertains to his compensation as Senate President in 1965 in the amount of P15.91% 15.935. 14. In the guise of reporting income using the cash method under Section 38 of the National Internal Revenue Code. There are no documents showing any withholding tax certificates.836.00% .00. 16. The sources of income are as follows: Official Salaries Legal Practice Farm Income Others Total P 2. As summarized in Schedule A (Annex ―T‖ hereof).649.420.836.408.836. National Home Mortgage Finance Corporation. National Food Authority Council. Schedule D: Schedule of Networth Analysis (Annex ―T-3‖ hereof). he was still receiving payments almost 20 years after.00 67.00 or US$2.700. The only problem is that in his Balance Sheet attached to his 1965 ITR immediately preceeding his ascendancy to the presidency he did not show any Receivables from client at all. 17. Inc.00 16. Light Rail Transit Authority and Home Development Mutual Fund.00 2.00 as President of the Philippines during the period 1966 until 1984. As previously stated.37% P16.442.646.91 in total income over a period of 20 years from 1965 to 1984. his .627. the Marcoses reported P16. FM made it appear that he had an extremely profitable legal practice before he became a President (FM being barred by law from practicing his law profession during his entire presidency) and that. The records indicate that the reported income came from her salary from the Ministry of Human Settlements and allowances from Food Terminal.442. Imelda reported salaries and allowances only for the years 1979 to 1984 in the amount of P1.00 or 96% represents ―receivables from prior years‖ during the period 1967 up to 1984.191.000. incredibly.

00 in December. covering the year immediately preceding their ascendancy to the presidency.000. This is the amount that represents that portion of the Marcoses income that is free for consumption. Revenue Region No.487. The total deductions in the amount of P1. Further.756. the income approach was utilized. stationeries and contributions while the other deductions in the amount of P567. 1. indicates an ending networth of P120. The joint income tax returns of FM and Imelda cannot. as well as the tax-exempt salary of the President for the years 1966 until 1972. Computations establish the total networth of spouses Ferdinand and Imelda.59.667. represents the total accumulated networth of spouses. The Marcoses paid income taxes totaling P8. as the case may be. the taxable reported income over the twenty-year period was P14. 20. In Schedule C. 19.325. 18. Quezon City and Revenue No.709. BIR attested that no records were found on any filing of capital gains tax return involving spouses FM and Imelda covering the years 1960 to 1965. Finally. 21. In computing for the networth.301. Revenue Region No. conceal the skeletons of their kleptocracy.097. FM reported a total of P2. they did not find any records involving the tax transactions of spouses Ferdinand and Imelda in Revenue Region No. the beginning capital is increased or decreased. The business expenses in the amount of P861.220. Likewise.00 which represents 88% of the gross income.845. medicare fees. The amount is arrived at by adding back to the net income after tax the personal and additional exemptions for the years 1965-1984. therefore. the net cumulative disposable income amounts to P6. the networth analysis in Schedule D.00 represent expenses incurred for subscription. the Office of the Revenue Collector of Batac. . Ferdinand and Imelda. 1965.00 which FM declared as Library and Miscellaneous assets. 4B1.75.000.00 as Other Income for the years 1972 up to 1976 which he referred to in his return as ―Miscellaneous Items‖ and ―Various Corporations. savings and investments. Leyte.994.296. In Schedule B. Respondent‘s Balance Sheet attached to their 1965 ITR. Spouses Ferdinand and Imelda did not declare any income from any deposits and placements which are subject to a 5% withholding tax.00 represents interest charges. Tacloban.463.595.networth was a mere P120.00 represents 12% of the total gross income. 22. 8.77.521.‖ There is no indication of any payor of the dividends or earnings. for the years 1965 until 1984 in the total amount of US$957. Under this approach. taxes and licenses.00 or US$980. The Bureau of Internal Revenue attested that after a diligent search of pertinent records on file with the Records Division.00 or US$1. depending upon the income earned or loss incurred.233.748.4A. Manila. postage. Baguio City. assuming the income from legal practice is real and valid x x x.

On November 12. In an undated instrument. for him to establish the AZIO Foundation. as the foundation‘s first and sole beneficiary. H. 25. Theo Bertheau. the AZIO FOUNDATION was renamed to VERSO FOUNDATION. Inc. Walter Fessler and Ernst Scheller. FM again issued another written order naming Austrahil PTY Ltd. Marcos changed the first and sole beneficiary to CHARIS FOUNDATION. with balances amounting to about $356-M with a reservation for the filing of a supplemental or separate forfeiture complaint should the need arise. legal counsel of Schweizeresche Kreditanstalt or SKA.G. the following presentation is confined to five identified accounts groups. But due to the difficulty if not the impossibility of detecting and documenting all those secret accounts as well as the enormity of the deposits therein hidden. 1972. Pursuant to the said Marcos mandate. 1981. Marcos executed a power of attorney in favor of Roberto S. Marcos issued a written directive to liquidated VERSO FOUNDATION and to transfer all its assets to account of FIDES TRUST COMPANY at Bank Hofman in Zurich under the account ―Reference OSER. 1981. On June 11. 1971.‖ The Board of Trustees decided to dissolve the foundation on June 25. fronts or agents who formed those foundations or corporate entities. THE AZIO-VERSO-VIBUR FOUNDATION ACCOUNTS 24. On the same date. Benedicto empowering him to transact business in behalf of the said foundation. Through their dummies/nominees. On March 11. also of SKA Legal Service. AZIO Foundation was formed on June 21. 1978. 1971. THE SECRET MARCOS DEPOSITS IN SWISS BANKS 23. and Dr. This was recorded on December 14. Helmuth Merling from Schaan were designated as members of the Board of Trustees of the said foundation. 1971. 26. In Sydney. Australia. was second beneficiary. The Board of Trustees remained the same. On August 29. Ferdinand Marcos was named first beneficiary and the Marcos Foundation. also known as Swiss Credit Bank. 1971 in Vaduz. Ferdinand Marcos issued a written order to Dr. This change was recorded on December 4. The following presentation very clearly and overwhelmingly show in detail how both respondents clandestinely stashed away the country‘s wealth to Switzerland and hid the same under layers upon layers of foundations and other corporate entities to prevent its detection. . they opened and maintained numerous bank accounts.

In an apparent maneuver to bury further the secret deposits beneath the thick layers of corporate entities. Ivo Beck and Limag Management. This is the biggest group from where the $50-M investment fund of the Marcoses was drawn when they bought the Central Bank‘s dollar-denominated treasury notes with high-yielding interests. eventually joined together and became one (1) account group under the AVERTINA FOUNDATION for the benefit of both FM and Imelda. On March 18. 1981 readily reveals that exactly the same securities were listed. two (2) groups under the foundation organized by Marcos dummies/nominees for FM‘s benefit. As of December 31. the liquidation was an attempt by the Marcoses to transfer the foundation‘s funds to another account or bank but this was prevented by the timely freeze order issued by the Swiss authorities. Another document signed by G. XANDY-WINTROP: CHARIS-SCOLARIVALAMO-SPINUS-AVERTINA FOUNDATION ACCOUNTS 31. comparison of the listing of the securities in the safe deposit register of the VERSO FOUNDATION as of February 27. under the General Account No. Under the foregoing circumstances. the balance of the bank accounts of VIBUR FOUNDATION with SKA.597. One of the latest documents obtained by the PCGG from the Swiss authorities is a declaration signed by Dr. Atty. 1981 with that of VIBUR FOUNDATION as of December 31.544. 28. 1986. Raber of SKA shows that VIBUR FOUNDATION is owned by the ―Marcos Familie‖ 30. 469857 totaled $3. Apparently. it is certain that the VIBUR FOUNDATION is the beneficial successor of VERSO FOUNDATION. Ivo Beck (the trustee) stating that the beneficial owner of VIBUR FOUNDATION is Ferdinand E. Zurich. 1981. a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fides Trust. As the Flow Chart hereof shows. However. The account was officially opened with SKA on September 10. 1981 in Vaduz. . 29.00 I. 1986.27. This is the most intricate and complicated account group. The beneficial owner was not made known to the bank since Fides Trust Company acted as fiduciary. the Marcos-designated Board of Trustees decided to liquidate VIBUR FOUNDATION. A notice of such liquidation was sent to the Office of the Public Register on March 21. 1989. FM effected the establishment of VIBUR FOUNDATION on May 13. Marcos. the bank accounts and respective balances of the said VIBUR FOUNDATION remained with SKA. However. were designated as members of the Board of Trustees.

35. Scheller were named as members of the Board of Trustees. were accomplished forms for ―Declaration/Specimen Signatures‖ submitted by the Marcos couple. C. 1968. Likewise. on March 27. 1968. 1981. the securities listed in the safe deposit register of WINTROP FOUNDATION Category S as of December 31. 1981. namely: CAR and NES.. 33. In the handwritten Regulations signed by the Marcos couple as well as in the type-written Regulations signed by Markus Geel both dated February 13. after his second year in the presidency. 1970 in Vaduz. a wholly-owned subsidiary of FIDES TRUST CO. Later. 1970. The next day.W. The XANDY FOUNDATION was established on March 3.Under the . 1978. However. as members of the Board of Trustees. Fessler. the Marcos spouses were named the first beneficiaries. Under the caption ―signature(s)‖ Ferdinand and Imelda signed their real names as well as their respective aliases underneath. WINTROP FOUNDATION was dissolved. On March 10. The beneficial owner of AVERTINA was not made known to the bank since the FIDES TRUST CO. 1980 were the same as those listed in the register of Avertina Category NES as of December 31. Found among the voluminous documents in Malacañang shortly after they fled to Hawaii in haste that fateful night of February 25. apparently to hide his true identity. his First Lady. FM and Imelda issued the written mandate to establish the foundation to Markus Geel of SKA on March 3. 34. were opened on September 10. March 21. the securities listed in the safe deposit register of WINTROP FOUNDATION Category R as of December 31. These accounts were actively operated and maintained by the Marcoses for about two (2) years until their closure sometime in February. 1986. 1981 in Vaduz with Atty. (Bongbong) and Irene – as equal third beneficiaries. 1970. However. C.32. The Board of Trustees remained the same at the outset. Souviron and E. 1981. 1981. JANE RYAN. Mrs. Ivo Beck and Limag Management. 1980. the surviving spouse as the second beneficiary and the Marcos children – Imee. Jr. Two (2) account categories. On March 20. Imelda Marcos also opened her own bank accounts with the same bank using an Americansounding alias. The AVERTINA FOUNDATION was established on May 13. 1980 were the same as those listed in the register of AVERTINA FOUNDATION Category CAR as of December 31. 36. Marcos opened bank accounts with SKA using an alias or pseudonym WILLIAM SAUNDERS. Souviron was replaced by Dr. 1970 and the balances transferred to XANDY FOUNDATION. Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos issued a written order to the Board of Wintrop to liquidate the foundation and transfer all its assets to Bank Hofmann in Zurich in favor of FIDES TRUST COMPANY. Ferdinand. Peter Ritter. The XANDY FOUNDATION was renamed WINTROP FOUNDATION on August 29. acted as fiduciary.

1980 are practically the same with those listed in the safe deposit register of Spinus Foundation as of December 31.366. However. In July/August. The account was officially opened with SKA on September 10. Ivo Beck and Limag Management.00 while that of Category NES as of 12-31-83 was US$8. Charis Foundation was renamed Scolari Foundation but the directors remained the same. Raber of SKA indicates that Avertina Foundation is owned by the ―Marcos Families. 41. 1981 FM ordered in writing that the Valamo Foundation be liquidated and all its assets be transferred to Bank Hofmann. The CHARIS FOUNDATION was established in VADUZ on December 27.‖ 37. The beneficial owner of the foundation was not made known to the bank since Fides Trust Co. FM gave a power of attorney to Roberto S. several transfers from the foundation‘s German . 1982. a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fides Trust Co. Walter Fessler and Ernst Scheller of SKA and Dr. Dr. the list of securities in the safe deposit register of Valamo Foundation as of December 31.. Peter Ritter were named as directors. Latest documents received from Swiss authorities included a declaration signed by IVO Beck stating that the beneficial owners of AVERTINA FOUNDATION are FM and Imelda. 1982. 1981. Benedicto on February 15. The Board of Directors decided on the immediate dissolution of Valamo Foundation on June 25. 39. as members of the Foundation‘s Board of Directors. 1981. AG in favor of Fides Trust Company under the account ―Reference OMAL‖. 1981 in Vaduz with Atty. SKA legal counsel. The other groups of foundations that eventually joined AVERTINA were also established by FM through his dummies.190.894. FM himself was named the first beneficiary and Xandy Foundation as second beneficiary in accordance with the handwritten instructions of FM on November 12.647. 1971. On September 6. it is certain that the beneficial successor of WINTROP FOUNDATION is AVERTINA FOUNDATION. 1989 amounted to US$231. acted as founding director in behalf of FM by virtue of the mandate and agreement dated November 12. it is certain that the Spinus Foundation is the beneficial successor of the Valamo Foundation. 38. On December 13. 1981.circumstances. which started with the CHARIS FOUNDATION. Another document signed by G. 1971. The balance of Category CAR as of December 31. 1972 to act in his behalf with regard to Charis Foundation. 40 The SPINUS FOUNDATION was established on May 13. 1974. there was a written instruction from Spinus Foundation to SKA to close its Swiss Franc account and transfer the balance to Avertina Foundation. Theo Bertheau. acted as fiduciary. Under the circumstances. 1971 and the Regulations.00. On March 11.

Theo Bertheau to establish the foundation with a note that the foundation‘s capitalization as well as the cost of establishing it be debited against the account of Trinidad Foundation. a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fides Trust Co. J. as members of the Foundation‘s Board of Directors. Jr. Fessler and E. 1973 in Vaduz with Fessler. TRINIDAD-RAYBY-PALMY FOUNDATION ACCOUNTS 42. Imelda issued a written mandate to Dr. Imelda issued a written order to transfer all the assets of Rayby Foundation to Trinidad Foundation and to subsequently liquidate Rayby. The PALMY FOUNDATION was established on May 13. 1988.W.1980 with that of the Palmy Foundation as of December 31. On March 10. Imelda was named the first beneficiary and her children Imelda (Imee). Imelda issued a written mandate to establish the foundation to Markus Geel on August 26. Ferdinand. 44. 1982 shows that all the securities of Spinus were transferred to Avertina. Moreover. Imelda apparently had the intention in 1973 to transfer part of the assets of Trinidad Foundation to another foundation. Ivo Beck and Limag Management. a comparison of the list of securities of the Spinus Foundation as of February 3. 1982 with the safe deposit slips of the Avertina Foundation Category CAR as of August 19. 1981. Irene were named as equal second beneficiaries. However. 1970 in Vaduz with C. both dated August 28. one can clearly see that practically the same securities were listed. she issued a written order to the board of Trinidad to dissolve the foundation and transfer all its assets to Bank Hofmann in favor of Fides Trust Co. transfer of assets never took place. The regulations as well as the agreement. thus the establishment of Rayby Foundation.5-M and $58-M. 1981 and Trinidad was liquidated on August 3. The account was officially opened with the SKA on September 10. Scheller of SKA and Dr. when one compares the listing of securities in the safe deposit register of Trinidad Foundation as of December 31. 1970. 1970 were likewise signed by Imelda.‖ Rayby was dissolved on April 6. 1981. On the same date. The beneficial owner was not made known to the bank since Fides Trust Co. Rayby Foundation was established on June 22. 1981 in Vaduz with Dr. respectively.marks and US dollar accounts were made to Avertina Category CAR totaling DM 29. Under the account ―Reference Dido. Imelda was named the first and only beneficiary of Rayby foundation. Otto Tondury as the foundation‘s directors. 43. The Trinidad Foundation was organized on August 26. 1981. Under the . However. acted as fiduciary. According to written information from SKA dated November 28. 1980. (Bongbong) and. Scheller and Ritter as members of the board of directors.

circumstances, it is certain that the Palmy Foundation is the beneficial successor of the Trinidad Foundation. 45. As of December 31, 1989, the ending balance of the bank accounts of Palmy Foundation under General Account No. 391528 is $17,214,432.00. 46. Latest documents received from Swiss Authorities included a declaration signed by Dr. Ivo Beck stating that the beneficial owner of Palmy Foundation is Imelda. Another document signed by Raber shows that the said Palmy Foundation is owned by ―Marcos Familie‖. K. ROSALYS-AGUAMINA FOUNDATION ACCOUNTS 47. Rosalys Foundation was established in 1971 with FM as the beneficiary. Its Articles of Incorporation was executed on September 24, 1971 and its By-Laws on October 3, 1971. This foundation maintained several accounts with Swiss Bank Corporation (SBC) under the general account 51960 where most of the bribe monies from Japanese suppliers were hidden. 48. On December 19, 1985, Rosalys Foundation was liquidated and all its assets were transferred to Aguamina Corporation‘s (Panama) Account No. 53300 with SBC. The ownership by Aguamina Corporation of Account No. 53300 is evidenced by an opening account documents from the bank. J. Christinaz and R.L. Rossier, First VicePresident and Senior Vice President, respectively, of SBC, Geneva issued a declaration dated September 3, 1991 stating that the by-laws dated October 3, 1971 governing Rosalys Foundation was the same by-law applied to Aguamina Corporation Account No. 53300. They further confirmed that no change of beneficial owner was involved while transferring the assets of Rosalys to Aguamina. Hence, FM remains the beneficiary of Aguamina Corporation Account No. 53300. As of August 30, 1991, the ending balance of Account No. 53300 amounted to $80,566,483.00. L. MALER FOUNDATION ACCOUNTS 49. Maler was first created as an establishment. A statement of its rules and regulations was found among Malacañang documents. It stated, among others, that 50% of the Company‘s assets will be for sole and full right disposal of FM and Imelda during their lifetime, which the remaining 50% will be divided in equal parts among their children. Another Malacañang document dated October 19,1968 and signed by Ferdinand and Imelda pertains to the appointment of Dr. Andre Barbey and Jean

Louis Sunier as attorneys of the company and as administrator and manager of all assets held by the company. The Marcos couple, also mentioned in the said document that they bought the Maler Establishment from SBC, Geneva. On the same date, FM and Imelda issued a letter addressed to Maler Establishment, stating that all instructions to be transmitted with regard to Maler will be signed with the word ―JOHN LEWIS‖. This word will have the same value as the couple‘s own personal signature. The letter was signed by FM and Imelda in their signatures and as John Lewis. 50. Maler Establishment opened and maintained bank accounts with SBC, Geneva. The opening bank documents were signed by Dr. Barbey and Mr. Sunnier as authorized signatories. 51. On November 17, 1981, it became necessary to transform Maler Establishment into a foundation. Likewise, the attorneys were changed to Michael Amaudruz, et. al. However, administration of the assets was left to SBC. The articles of incorporation of Maler Foundation registered on November 17, 1981 appear to be the same articles applied to Maler Establishment. On February 28, 1984, Maler Foundation cancelled the power of attorney for the management of its assets in favor of SBC and transferred such power to Sustrust Investment Co., S.A. 52. As of June 6, 1991, the ending balance of Maler Foundation‘s Account Nos. 254,508 BT and 98,929 NY amount SF 9,083,567 and SG 16,195,258, respectively, for a total of SF 25,278,825.00. GM only until December 31, 1980. This account was opened by Maler when it was still an establishment which was subsequently transformed into a foundation. 53. All the five (5) group accounts in the over-all flow chart have a total balance of about Three Hundred Fifty Six Million Dollars ($356,000,000.00) as shown by Annex ―R-5‖ hereto attached as integral part hereof. x x x x x x.
[27]

Respondents Imelda R. Marcos, Maria Imelda M. Manotoc, Irene M. Araneta and Ferdinand Marcos, Jr., in their answer, stated the following:

xxx xxx 4.

xxx

Respondents ADMIT paragraphs 3 and 4 of the Petition.

5. Respondents specifically deny paragraph 5 of the Petition in so far as it states that summons and other court processes may be served on Respondent Imelda R.

Marcos at the stated address the truth of the matter being that Respondent Imelda R. Marcos may be served with summons and other processes at No. 10-B Bel Air Condominium 5022 P. Burgos Street, Makati, Metro Manila, and ADMIT the rest. xxx xxx xxx

10. Respondents ADMIT paragraph 11 of the Petition. 11. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 12 of the Petition for lack of knowledge sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents were not privy to the transactions and that they cannot remember exactly the truth as to the matters alleged. 12. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 13 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs and Balance Sheet. 13. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 14 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs. 14. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 15 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs. 15. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 16 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs. 16. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 17 of the Petition insofar as it attributes willful duplicity on the part of the late President Marcos, for being false, the same being pure conclusions based on pure assumption and not allegations of fact; and specifically DENY the rest for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs or the attachments thereto. 17. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 18 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs.

18. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 19 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs and that they are not privy to the activities of the BIR. 19. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 20 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs. 20. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 21 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs. 21. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 22 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents cannot remember with exactitude the contents of the alleged ITRs. 22. Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 23 insofar as it alleges that Respondents clandestinely stashed the country‘s wealth in Switzerland and hid the same under layers and layers of foundation and corporate entities for being false, the truth being that Respondents aforesaid properties were lawfully acquired. 23. Respondents specifically DENY paragraphs 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29 and 30 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since Respondents were not privy to the transactions regarding the alleged Azio-Verso-Vibur Foundation accounts, except that as to Respondent Imelda R. Marcos she specifically remembers that the funds involved were lawfully acquired. 24. Respondents specifically DENY paragraphs 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36,37, 38, 39, 40, and 41 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations since Respondents are not privy to the transactions and as to such transaction they were privy to they cannot remember with exactitude the same having occurred a long time ago, except that as to Respondent Imelda R. Marcos she specifically remembers that the funds involved were lawfully acquired. 25. Respondents specifically DENY paragraphs 42, 43, 44, 45, and 46, of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations since Respondents were not privy to the transactions and as to such transaction they were privy to they cannot remember with exactitude the same having occurred a long time ago, except that as to Respondent Imelda R. Marcos she specifically remembers that the funds involved were lawfully acquired.

and Supplemental Motion for Reconsideration dated October 9. Marcos. 1999 of Ferdinand. 1999 of Mrs. 50. 2000 filed by Mrs. 2000 filed by Mrs. (c) (d) (e) (f) . Demurrer to Evidence dated May 2.26. Jr.. and Mrs. Pre-trial Brief dated October 4. Marcos and the Marcos children indubitably failed to tender genuine issues in their answer to the petition for forfeiture. Manotoc and Ferdinand. Marcos. of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations since Respondents were not privy to the transactions and as to such transaction they were privy to they cannot remember with exactitude the same having occurred a long time ago. Upon careful perusal of the foregoing. Marcos and Memorandum dated December 17. Memorandum dated December 12. Marcos which the other respondents (Marcos children) adopted. A genuine issue is an issue of fact which calls for the presentation of evidence as distinguished from an issue which is fictitious and contrived. the Court finds that respondent Mrs. Jr. Imee Marcos-Manotoc adopting the pre-trial brief of Mrs.. 2000 likewise jointly filed by Mrs. set up in bad faith or patently lacking in substance so as not to constitute a genuine issue for trial. 2000. Jr. The following pleadings filed by respondent Marcoses are replete with indications of a spurious defense: (a) (b) Respondents' Answer dated October 18. except that as to Respondent Imelda R. Marcos she specifically remembers that the funds involved were lawfully acquired. Respondents‘ defenses of ―lack of knowledge for lack of privity‖ or ―(inability to) recall because it happened a long time ago‖ or. Marcos.respondents. 51 and 52. that ―the funds were lawfully acquired‖ are fully insufficient to tender genuine issues. Motion for Reconsideration dated September 26. 2000 of Mrs. Marcos and adopted by the Marcos children. Opposition to Motion for Summary Judgment dated March 21. Respondent Marcoses‘ defenses were a sham and evidently calibrated to compound and confuse the issues. 1999 of Irene Marcos-Araneta adopting the pre-trial briefs of her co. Manotoc and Ferdinand. and Manifestation dated October 19. Motion for Reconsideration dated October 5. filed by Mrs. 2000 of the Marcos children. Marcos. 2000 jointly filed by Mrs. Supplemental Pre-trial Brief dated October 19. on the par t of Mrs. Respondents specifically DENY paragraphs 49. 1993.

respondents failed to specifically deny each and every allegation contained in the petition for forfeiture in the manner required by the rules. more deeply schooled and skilled in the subtle art of movement and position. 1993. Rule 8 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. It is rather a contest in which each contending party fully and fairly lays before the court the facts in issue and then. shall set forth the substance of the matters upon which he relies to support his denial. On the part of Mrs. she failed to particularly state the ultimate facts surrounding the lawful manner or mode of acquisition of the subject funds. are not to be won by a rapier‘s thrust. ―the funds were lawfully acquired.‖ and. whenever practicable. brushing aside as wholly trivial and indecisive all imperfections of form and technicalities of procedure. Lawsuits. Our jurisdiction adheres to this rule to avoid and prevent unnecessary expenses and waste of time by compelling both parties to lay their cards on the table. together with the matters they rely upon in support of such denial. Section 10. by the presentation of . and General/Supplemental Agreement dated December 23. provides: A defendant must specify each material allegation of fact the truth of which he does not admit and. As explained in Alonso vs.[29] A litigation is not a game of technicalities in which one. [28] The purpose of requiring respondents to make a specific denial is to make them disclose facts which will disprove the allegations of petitioner at the trial.‖ without stating the basis of such assertions. and this shall have the effect of a denial. Marcos. An examination of the foregoing pleadings is in order. thus reducing the controversy to its true terms. Marcos. In their answer. entraps and destroys the other. she claimed that the funds were lawfully acquired. Simply put. All they gave were stock answers like ―they have no sufficient knowledge‖ or ―they could not recall because it happened a long time ago. asks that justice be done upon the merits. Even in this case before us. unlike duels. 1998. Where a defendant is without knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of a material averment made in the complaint. as to Mrs.  Respondents’ Answer dated October 18. he shall so state. Where a defendant desires to deny only a part of an averment.(g) (h) Manifestation dated May 26. he shall specify so much of it as is true and material and shall deny the remainder. However. she merely stated in her answer with the other respondents that the funds were ―lawfully acquired‖ without detailing how exactly these funds were supposedly acquired legally by them. Villamor. 1993. her assertion that the funds were lawfully acquired remains bare and unaccompanied by any factual support which can prove.

that is. Through their dummies/nominees. It is true that one of the modes of specific denial under the rules is a denial through a statement that the defendant is without knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the material averment in the complaint. The question. But due to the difficulty if not the impossibility of detecting and documenting all those secret accounts as well as the enormity of the deposits therein hidden. [32] Respondents‘ lame denial of the aforesaid allegation was: 22. InMorales vs. Court of Appeals. Such a general. a denial pregnant with the admission of the substantial facts in the pleading responded to which are not squarely denied. performed or committed a particular act which the latter did not in fact do. that indeed the funds were acquired legitimately by the Marcos family. fronts or agents who formed those foundations or corporate entities. The following presentation very clearly and overwhelmingly show in detail how both respondents clandestinely stashed away the country‘s wealth to Switzerland and hid the same under layers upon layers of foundations and other corporate entities to prevent its detection. perform or commit. however. self-serving claim of ignorance of the facts alleged in the petition for forfeiture was insufficient to raise an issue. Respondent Marcoses should have positively stated how it was that they were supposedly ignorant of the facts alleged. despite the serious and specific allegations against them. Here.evidence at a hearing. Respondents‘ denials in their answer at the Sandiganbayan were based on their alleged lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations of the petition. a categorical and express denial must be made. with balances amounting to about $356-M with a reservation for the filing of a supplemental or separate forfeiture complaint should the need arise. It was in . Respondents specifically DENY paragraph 23 insofar as it alleges that Respondents clandestinely stashed the country‘s wealth in Switzerland and hid the same under layers and layers of foundations and corporate entities for being false. this particular denial had the earmark of what is called in the law on pleadings as a negative pregnant. the Marcoses responded by simply saying that they had no knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of such allegations. the following presentation is confined to five identified accounts groups.[31] To elucidate. the allegation of petitioner Republic in paragraph 23 of the petition for forfeiture stated: 23.[30] this Court ruled that if an allegation directly and specifically charges a party with having done. is whether the kind of denial in respondents‘ answer qualifies as the specific denial called for by the rules. they opened and maintained numerous bank accounts. the truth being that Respondents‘ aforesaid properties were lawfully acquired . [33] Evidently. We do not think so.

were deemed admitted by them pursuant to Section 11. as to respondent Imelda R. Therefore. 28. Where a fact is alleged with qualifying or modifying language and the words of the allegation as so qualified or modified are literally denied. 35.effect an admission of the averments it was directed at. the following unsupported denials of respondents in their answer were pregnant with admissions of the substantial facts alleged in the Republic‘s petition for forfeiture: 23. 32. except that. [34] Stated otherwise. 27. [36] By the same token.[35] In the instant case. 33. Marcos. not having been specifically denied by respondents in their answer. 38. Respondents specifically DENY paragraphs 31. xxx shall be deemed admitted when not specifically denied. It is a denial pregnant with an admission of the substantial facts alleged in the pleading. she specifically remembers that the funds involved were lawfully acquired. has been held that the qualifying circumstances alone are denied while the fact itself is admitted. 1990. xxx. the allegations in the petition for forfeiture on the existence of the Swiss bank deposits in the sum of about US$356 million. The denial contained in paragraph 22 of the answer was focused on the averment in paragraph 23 of the petition for forfeiture that ―Respondents clandestinely stashed the country‘s wealth in Switzerland and hid the same under layers and layers of foundations and corporate entities. the material allegations in paragraph 23 of the said petition were not specifically denied by respondents in paragraph 22 of their answer. 25. 41 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations since respondents were not privy to the transactions and as to such transactions they were privy to. a negative pregnant is a form of negative expression which carries with it an affirmation or at least an implication of some kind favorable to the adverse party. 24. Rule 8 of the 1997 Revised Rules on Civil Procedure: Material averment in the complaint. 36. 34. they cannot remember with exactitude the . 29 and 30 of the Petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegation since respondents were not privy to the transactions regarding the alleged Azio-Verso-Vibur Foundation accounts.‖ Paragraph 22 of the respondents‘ answer was thus a denial pregnant with admissions of the following substantial facts: (1) the Swiss bank deposits existed and (2) that the estimated sum thereof was US$356 million as of December. 39. 37. 26. 40. Respondents specifically DENY paragraphs 24.

she specifically remembers that the funds involved were lawfully acquired. Marcos. Respondent Imelda R. except that as to respondent Imelda R. As . indicating that said documents were within their knowledge. Marcos never specifically denied the existence of the Swiss funds. Mrs. Respondents specifically DENY paragraphs 42. Marcos. except as to respondent Imelda R. 25. Respondents specifically DENY paragraphs 49. and 46 of the petition for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to from a belief as to the truth of the allegations since respondents were not privy to the transactions and as to such transaction they were privy to. the same having occurred a long time ago. Marcos. Ferdinand E. she specifically remembers that the funds involved were lawfully acquired. Moreover. they cannot remember with exactitude. 45. This only reinforced her earlier admission of the allegation in paragraph 23 of the petition for forfeiture regarding the existence of the US$356 million Swiss bank deposits. 50. Marcos and her late husband. respondents‘ denial of the allegations in the petition for forfeiture ―for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations since respondents were not privy to the transactions‖ was just a pretense. The allegations in paragraphs 47[37] and 48[38] of the petition for forfeiture referring to the creation and amount of the deposits of the Rosalys-Aguamina Foundation as well as the averment in paragraph 52-a[39] of the said petition with respect to the sum of the Swiss bank deposits estimated to be US$356 million were again not specifically denied by respondents in their answer.[42] It is worthy to note that the pertinent documents attached to the petition for forfeiture were even signed personally by respondent Mrs.same having occurred a long time ago. Marcos‘ privity to the transactions was in fact evident from her signatures on some of the vital documents[41] attached to the petition for forfeiture which Mrs. it is equivalent to an admission. except that as to respondent Imelda R. she specifically remembers that the funds involved were lawfully acquired. nature and amount of the Swiss funds were therefore deemed admitted by them.[40] if a defendant‘s denial is a negative pregnant. 51 and 52 of the petition for lack of knowledge and information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations since respondents were not privy to the transactions and as to such transaction they were privy to they cannot remember with exactitude the same having occurred a long time ago. Nee Bon Sing. 26. Her claim that ―the funds involved were lawfully acquired‖ was an acknowledgment on her part of the existence of said deposits. Marcos. The respondents did not at all respond to the issues raised in these paragraphs and the existence. As held in Galofa vs. The matters referred to in paragraphs 23 to 26 of the respondents‘ answer pertained to the creation of five groups of accounts as well as their respective ending balances and attached documents alleged in paragraphs 24 to 52 of the Republic‘s petition for forfeiture. 43. Marcos failed to specifically deny as required by the rules.

as well as the veracity of the contents thereof. 6) transferring funds and assets of the Foundations to other Foundations or Fides Trust. Marcos and her late husband personally masterminded and participated in the formation and control of said foundations? This is a fact respondent Marcoses were never able to explain. 4) opening of bank accounts for the Foundations. They also had the means and opportunity of verifying the same from the records of the BIR and the Office of the President. Marcos and Imelda R.[44] An unexplained denial of information within the control of the pleader. Not only that. using the Foundations as dummies. is evasive and is insufficient to constitute an effective denial. [43] How could respondents therefore claim lack of sufficient knowledge or information regarding the existence of the Swiss bank deposits and the creation of five groups of accounts when Mrs.correctly pointed out by Sandiganbayan Justice Francisco Villaruz. [45] The form of denial adopted by respondents must be availed of with sincerity and in good faith. When matters regarding which respondents claim to have no knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief are plainly and necessarily within their knowledge. and certainly not for the purpose of confusing the adverse party as to what allegations of the petition are really being challenged. Petition [for forfeiture] strongly indicate that FM and/or Imelda were the real owners of the assets deposited in the Swiss banks. Petitioner correctly points out that respondents' denial was not really grounded on lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief but was based on lack of recollection. Jr. Respondents' answer also technically admitted the genuineness and due execution of the Income Tax Returns (ITRs) and the balance sheets of the late Ferdinand E. They did not. 3) approving regulations of the Foundations for the distribution of capital and income of the Foundations to the First and Second beneficiary (who are no other than FM and his family). By reviewing their own records. respondent Marcoses could have easily determined the genuineness and due execution of the ITRs and the balance sheets. nor should it be made for the purpose of delay. a profession of ignorance about a fact which is patently and necessarily within the pleader‘s knowledge or means of knowing is as ineffective as no denial at . in his dissenting opinion: The pattern of: 1) creating foundations. 5) changing the names of the Foundations. the Marcoses did not only present unsubstantiated assertions but in truth attempted to mislead and deceive this Court by presenting an obviously contrived defense. their alleged ignorance or lack of information will not be considered a specific denial. The answer again premised its denials of said ITRs and balance sheets on the ground of lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the contents thereof. Marcos attached to the petition for forfeiture. 2) use of pseudonyms and dummies.[46] In the instant case. Simply put. or is readily accessible to him. 7) liquidation of the Foundations as substantiated by the Annexes U to U-168.

[49] It is unquestionably within the court‘s power to require the parties to submit their pre-trial briefs and to state the number of witnesses intended to be called to the stand.P. 1993 The pre-trial brief of Mrs. it becomes apparent if genuine issues are being put forward necessitating the . [48] Thus. and the substance of their respective testimonies. therefore. and a brief summary of the evidence each of them is expected to give as well as to disclose the number of documents to be submitted with a description of the nature of each. Lianga Industries.  PRE-TRIAL BRIEF DATED OCTOBER 18. Marcos stressed that the funds involved were lawfully acquired. Mrs. as in their answer. In said brief. x x x their respective pre-trial briefs which shall contain. they failed to state and substantiate how these funds were acquired lawfully. Marcos and are therefore bound by the acts of their father vis-a-vis the Swiss funds.[47] Respondents‘ ineffective denial thus failed to properly tender an issue and the averments contained in the petition for forfeiture were deemed judicially admitted by them. As held in J. xxx (f) the number and names of the witnesses. vs. Section 6. Inc. They failed to present and attach even a single document that would show and prove the truth of their allegations. The tenor and character of the testimony of the witnesses and of the documents to be deduced at the trial thus made known.: Its ―specific denial‖ of the material allegation of the petition without setting forth the substance of the matters relied upon to support its general denial. Juan & Sons. failed to properly tender on issue. Rule 18 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure provides: The parties shall file with the court and serve on the adverse party. among others: xxx (d) the documents or exhibits to be presented. the general denial of the Marcos children of the allegations in the petition for forfeiture ―for lack of knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations since they were not privy to the transactions‖ cannot rightfully be accepted as a defense because they are the legal heirs and successors-in-interest of Ferdinand E. stating the purpose thereof. Marcos was adopted by the three Marcos children.all. when such matters were plainly within its knowledge and it could not logically pretend ignorance as to the same. But. Inc. in addition to the particular issues of fact and law.

the judgment sought shall be rendered forthwith if the pleadings. there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law. Rule 35 of the 1997 Rules on Civil Procedure: x x x The adverse party may serve opposing affidavits. Mrs. or admissions at least three (3) days before hearing. merely stated: xxx WITNESSES 4. depositions or admissions as required by Section 3. as subsequently adopted by respondent Marcos children.[50] The pre-trial brief of Mrs. the case became ripe for summary judgment. 2000 of petitioner Republic was merely adopted by the Marcos children as their own opposition to the said motion. We hold that. supporting affidavits.holding of a trial. 2000 The opposition filed by Mrs.  OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT DATED MARCH 21. Marcos only who in fact had previously claimed ignorance and lack of knowledge. Such cunning tactics of respondents are totally unacceptable to this Court. as required by the rules.1 Respondent Imelda will present herself as a witness and reserves the right to present additional witnesses as may be necessary in the course of the trial. And even then. However. since no genuine issue was raised. After hearing. Marcos to the motion for summary judgment dated March 21.1 Respondent Imelda reserves the right to present and introduce in evidence documents as may be necessary in the course of the trial. depositions. depositions. was not made known either. What alone appeared certain was the testimony of Mrs. Marcos. the parties are obliged not only to make a formal identification and specification of the issues and their proofs. xxx DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE 5. Marcos did not enumerate and describe the documents constituting her evidence. show that. [51] . except as to the amount of damages. it was again not accompanied by affidavits. and to put these matters in writing and submit them to the court within the specified period for the prompt disposition of the action. and admissions on file. the substance of her testimony. Neither the names of witnesses nor the nature of their testimony was stated. Likewise.

2000.  Demurrer to Evidence dated May 2. her counsel stated that his client was just a beneficiary of the funds. MARCELO: Yes. Marcos disclaimed ownership of or interest in the funds. respondents merely made general denials without alleging facts which would have been admissible in evidence at the hearing. Marcos and the Marcos children[54] All these pleadings again contained no allegations of facts showing their lawful acquisition of the funds. thereby failing to raise genuine issues of fact. Okay. What is your point here? Does the estate of Marcos own anything of the $360 million subject of this case. PJ Garchitorena: That‘s it. This is yet another indication that respondents presented a fictitious defense because. Marcelo that the US$360 million more or less subject matter of the instant lawsuit as allegedly obtained from the various Swiss Foundations do not belong to the estate of Marcos or to Imelda Marcos herself. Atty. Counsel for Manotoc and Manotoc. during the pre-trial. Marcos and the Marcos children denied ownership of or interest in the Swiss funds: PJ Garchitorena: Make of record that as far as Imelda Marcos is concerned through the statement of Atty. Armando M. during the pre-trial.The absence of opposing affidavits. depositions and admissions to contradict the sworn declarations in the Republic‘s motion only demonstrated that the averments of such opposition were not genuine and therefore unworthy of belief. Mrs. 2002 that. Mrs. That‘s your statement of facts? Atty.[53] and Memoranda of Mrs. TECSON: We joined the Manifestation of Counsel. PJ Garchitorena: . Once more. contrary to petitioner Republic‘s allegation that Mrs. Marcos insists in her memorandum dated October 21.[52] Motions for Reconsideration. Your Honor. Jr.

and now this Court. General/Supplemental Compromise Agreement dated December 28. 1998 filed by MRS. being the sole beneficiary of the dollar deposits in the name of the various foundations alleged in the case. Your Honor. Your Honor. Marcos owns 90% of the subject matter of the aboveentitled case.You do not own anything? Atty. SISON: I join the position taken by my other compañeros here. Your Honor. respondents alleged either that they had no knowledge of the existence of the Swiss deposits or that they could no longer remember anything as it happened a long time ago. and before this Honorable Court. [55] We are convinced that the strategy of respondent Marcoses was to confuse petitioner Republic as to what facts they would prove or what issues they intended to pose for the court's resolution. PJ Garchitorena: Counsel for Irene Araneta? Atty. There is no doubt in our mind that they were leading petitioner Republic. Mrs.  Manifestation dated May 26. As to Mrs. Marcos. she remembered that it was lawfully acquired. TECSON: Yes. Marcos. . if not trying to drag this forfeiture case to eternity. Marcos stated that: COMES NOW undersigned counsel for respondent Imelda R. to perplexity. most respectfully manifests: That respondent Imelda R. xxx Atty. 1993 These pleadings of respondent Marcoses presented nothing but feigned defenses. Marcos. SISON: Irene Araneta as heir do (sic) not own any of the amount. 1998. In her Manifestation dated May 26. In their earlier pleadings.

depositions or admissions that those issues are not genuine but fictitious. are not sufficient to raise genuine issues of fact and will not defeat a motion for summary judgment.[56] In sum. petitioner Republic attached sworn statements of witnesses who had personal knowledge of the Marcoses' participation in the illegal acquisition of funds deposited in the Swiss accounts under the names of five groups or foundations. respondent Marcoses denied knowledge as well as ownership of the Swiss funds.[58] Summary judgment is a procedural device for the prompt disposition of actions in which the pleadings raise only a legal issue. summary judgment is appropriate when there are no genuine issues of fact requiring the presentation of evidence in a full-blown trial. therefore. if unaccompanied by any fact which will be admissible in evidence at a hearing. summary judgment is proper. admissions and affidavits that there are no important questions or issues of fact posed and. Marcos. in reality comprised mere verbiage that was evidently wanting in substance and constituted no genuine issues for trial. [59] In the various annexes to the petition for forfeiture. These sworn statements substantiated the illgotten nature of the Swiss bank deposits. the movant is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law. however. as already pointed out. A motion for summary judgment is premised on the assumption that the issues presented need not be tried either because these are patently devoid of substance or that there is no genuine issue as to any pertinent fact. It is a method sanctioned by the Rules of Court for the prompt disposition of a civil action where there exists no serious controversy. In their answer and other subsequent pleadings. under the circumstances.That in fact only 10% of the subject matter in the above-entitled case belongs to the estate of the late President Ferdinand E. Under the rules. The theory of summary judgment is that. it is the law itself which determines when summary judgment is called for. We therefore rule that. Anyway we look at it. the Court is justified in dispensing with the trial and rendering summary judgment for petitioner. if the affidavits. the Marcoses merely made general denials of the allegations . But. Even if on their face the pleadings appear to raise issue. In fact. This was. then summary judgment as prescribed by the rules must ensue as a matter of law. although an answer may on its face appear to tender issues requiring trial. during the pre-trial conference.[57] A summary judgment is one granted upon motion of a party for an expeditious settlement of the case. to us. The ―facts‖ pleaded by respondents. if it is established by affidavits. an unequivocal admission of ownership by the Marcoses of the said deposits. respondent Marcoses have put forth no real defense. including the Swiss deposits. mere denials. respondent Marcoses sought to implement the agreed distribution of the Marcos assets. In the Compromise/Supplemental Agreements. while ostensibly raising important questions or issues of fact. depositions. not a genuine issue as to any material fact. it appearing from the pleadings. depositions and admissions show that such issues are not genuine.

The alleged positive acts and express admissions of the petitioner did not preclude it from filing a motion for summary judgment. . petitioner Republic had bound itself to go to trial on the basis of existing issues. it is only to delay disposition and gain time. they also claim ownership of 90% of the funds and allege that only 10% belongs to the Marcos estate. at any time after the pleading in answer thereto has been served. Summary judgment for defending party. counterclaim. a trial would have served no purpose at all and would have been totally unnecessary. thus justifying a summary judgment on the petition for forfeiture. all respondents have offered are foxy responses like ―lack of sufficient knowledge or lack of privity‖ or ―they cannot recall because it happened a long time ago‖ or. ―the funds were lawfully acquired. it had legally waived whatever right it had to move for summary judgment. There were no opposing affidavits to contradict the sworn declarations of the witnesses of petitioner Republic.‖ But.against them without stating facts admissible in evidence at the hearing. depositions or admissions for a summary judgment in his favor upon all or any part thereof. Marcos Jr. leading to the inescapable conclusion that the matters raised in the Marcoses‘ answer were false. Without the deceptive reasoning and argumentation. Summary judgment for claimant. if the semblance of a defense is interposed at all. this Court has encountered cases like this which are either only half-heartedly defended or. Under these circumstances. Section 2.A party against whom a claim. Marcos. Since 1991.A party seeking to recover upon a claim. this protracted litigation could have ended a long time ago. to the prejudice of the Republic and ultimately of the Filipino people. It has been an incredible charade from beginning to end. at any . In the hope of convincing this Court to rule otherwise. respondents Maria Imelda Marcos-Manotoc and Ferdinand R. Time and again. Rule 35 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure provides: Rule 35 Summary Judgment Section 1. . a candid demonstration of respondents‘ good faith should have been made to the court below. or cross-claim or to obtain a declaratory relief may. It is certainly not in the interest of justice to allow respondent Marcoses to avail of the appellate remedies accorded by the Rules of Court to litigants in good faith. Thus. counterclaim. From the beginning. contend that "by its positive acts and express admissions prior to filing the motion for summary judgment on March 10."[60] We do not think so. up to the present. when the petition for forfeiture was first filed. thereby failing to raise any genuine issues of fact. 2000. as to Mrs. or cross-claim is asserted or a declaratory relief is sought may. move with supporting affidavits. whenever it suits them.

some rules. depositions or admissions for a summary judgment in his favor as to all or any part thereof. Like Rule 113 of the Rules of Civil Practice of New York.e.[65] the New York Supreme Court ruled: "PER CURIAM. (Emphasis ours) [61] Under the rule. This being so. However. a decision was not rendered within sixty days after the final adjournment of the term at which the case was tried. This being so. move with supporting affidavits. Under the New York rule. the New York Supreme Court's interpretation of Rule 113 of the Rules of Civil Practice can be applied by analogy to the interpretation of Section 1. the plaintiff can move for summary judgment ―at any time after the pleading in answer thereto (i. and that a party against whom a claim. particularly those of the United States where many of our laws and rules were copied. ours do not provide for a fixed reglementary period within which to move for summary judgment. after issues have been joined. the plaintiff moved for a new trial under Section 442 of the Civil Practice Act. Rule 35. Owing to the serious illness of the trial justice.[63] No fixed prescriptive period is provided.time. [62] Under said rule. counterclaim or cross-claim may move for summary judgment at any time after the expiration of 20 days from the commencement of the action or after service of a motion for summary judgment by the adverse party." No fixed reglementary period is provided by the Rules. the motion for summary judgment may be made at any stage of the litigation. Muzysh. meaning. particularly Rule 113 of the Rules of Civil Practice of New York. counterclaim or cross-claim is asserted may move for summary judgment at any time. counterclaim or cross-claim) has been served. How else does one construe the phrase "any time after the answer has been served?‖ This issue is actually one of first impression. Plaintiff introduced her evidence and the defendants rested on the case made by the plaintiff. that is. in answer to the claim. the plaintiff has to wait for the answer before he can move for summary judgment.. The plaintiff also moved for . Rule 56 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that a party seeking to recover upon a claim. after the issues have been joined. is in order. The case was submitted. With the approval of the trial justice. an examination of foreign laws and jurisprudence.[64] And like the New York rules. No local jurisprudence or authoritative work has touched upon this matter. the motion for summary judgment may be made at any stage of the litigation. specifically provide that a motion for summary judgment may not be made until issues have been joined. of our 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. only after an answer has been served. our rules also provide that a motion for summary judgment may not be made until issues have been joined. And what exactly does the phrase "at any stage of the litigation" mean? In Ecker vs.

the phrase "anytime after the pleading in answer thereto has been served" in Section 1. plaintiff was allowed to move for summary judgment even after trial and submission of the case for resolution." (emphasis ours) On the basis of the aforequoted disquisition. that is. The amount due and unpaid under the contract is not in dispute.summary judgment under Rule 113 of the Rules of Civil Practice. Rule 35 of our Rules of Civil Procedure means "at any stage of the litigation. A contrary interpretation would go against the very objective of the Rule on Summary Judgment which is to "weed out sham claims or defenses thereby avoiding the expense and loss of time involved in a trial. "any stage of the litigation" means that "even if the plaintiff has proceeded to trial. petitioner "waived" its right to summary judgment. The motion was opposed mainly on the ground that. The object of Rule 113 is to empower the court to summarily determine whether or not a bona fide issue exists between the parties. and there is no limitation on the power of the court to make such a determination at any stage of the litigation. In Ecker. or that the defenses raised by the defendant(s) are sham or frivolous. by agreeing to proceed to trial during the pre-trial conference. by proceeding to trial. protracted and expensive litigation and encourages the speedy and prompt disposition of cases. Respondent Marcoses argue that."[66] In the case at bar. the plaintiff had waived her right to summary judgment and that the answer and the opposing affidavits raised triable issues. The law looks with disfavor on long. This is rank injustice we cannot tolerate. "that plaintiff had waived her right to summary judgment" by her act of proceeding to trial. petitioner moved for summary judgment after pre-trial and before its scheduled date for presentation of evidence. The Special Term properly held that the answer and the opposing affidavits raised no triable issue. as correctly ruled by the New York court. Therefore." [68] In cases with political undertones like the one at bar. This argument must fail in the light of the New York Supreme Court ruling which we apply by analogy to this case. plaintiff may move for summary judgment. If." Whenever it becomes evident at any stage of the litigation that no triable issue exists. That is why the law and the .[67] the defendant opposed the motion for summary judgment on a ground similar to that raised by the Marcoses. this does not preclude him from thereafter moving for summary judgment. The Special Term granted both motions and the defendants have appealed. more so should we permit it in the present case where petitioner moved for summary judgment before trial. Rule 113 of the Rules of Civil Practice and the Civil Practice Act prescribe no limitation as to the time when a motion for summary judgment must be made. adverse parties will often do almost anything to delay the proceedings in the hope that a future administration sympathetic to them might be able to influence the outcome of the case in their favor.

Rule 1 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure that the "[r]ules should be liberally construed in order to promote their objective of securing a just. we hereby rule that petitioner Republic could validly move for summary judgment any time after the respondents‘ answer was filed or. the Marcoses denied ownership of the Swiss funds. Summary judgment is one of them. however. for that matter. The motion was denied because of the pending compromise agreement between the Marcoses and petitioner. respondents must show not only unjustified inaction but also that some unfair injury to them might result unless the action is barred.[72] This. It was the subsequent events that transpired after the answer was filed. the principle of laches is one of estoppel because "it prevents people who have slept on their rights from prejudicing the rights of third parties who have placed reliance on the inaction of the original parties and their successors-in-interest". speedy and inexpensive disposition of every action and proceeding. This interpretation conforms with the guiding principle enshrined in Section 6. It was definitely not because of neglect or inaction that petitioner filed the (second) motion for summary judgment years after respondents' answer to the petition for forfeiture. respondents failed to bear out. 1996.[70] In effect. prompting petitioner to file another motion for summary judgment now under consideration by this Court. Faithful therefore to the spirit of the law on summary judgment which seeks to avoid unnecessary expense and loss of time in a trial. which prevented petitioner from filing the questioned motion. Petitioner Republic initially filed its motion for summary judgment on October 18. warranting a presumption that the person has abandoned his right or declined to assert it. Estoppel by laches is the failure or neglect for an unreasonable or unexplained length of time to do that which. Thus.[71] A careful examination of the records. could or should have been done earlier. at any subsequent stage of the litigation. therefore. the Marcoses disclaimed ownership of the Swiss deposits. In fact. including the motion for summary judgment. reveals that petitioner was in fact never remiss in pursuing its case against respondent Marcoses through every remedy available to it. The fact that petitioner agreed to proceed to trial did not in any way prevent it from moving for summary judgment. Not being the owners. as indeed no genuine issue of fact was ever validly raised by respondent Marcoses."[69] Respondents further allege that the motion for summary judgment was based on respondents' answer and other documents that had long been in the records of the case. 2000. therefore. We disagree. by the time the motion was filed on March 10. estoppel by laches had already set in against petitioner. In invoking the doctrine of estoppel by laches. But during the pre-trial conference. by exercising due diligence. as they .rules provide for a number of devices to ensure the speedy disposition of cases. during the pre-trial conference.

claimed.[75] Equity demands that petitioner Republic should not be barred from pursuing the people's case against the Marcoses. the issue of whether or not petitioner Republic was able to prove its case for forfeiture in accordance with the requisites of Sections 2 and 3 of RA 1379 now takes center stage. The law raises the prima facie presumption that a property is unlawfully acquired. Provided.[73] Nor can estoppel validate an act that contravenes law or public policy. respondents did not have any vested right or interest which could be adversely affected by petitioner's alleged inaction. That no judgment shall be rendered within six months before any general election or within three months before any special election. the doctrine of estoppel or laches does not apply when the government sues as a sovereign or asserts governmental rights. xxx xxx Sec. Judgment – If the respondent is unable to show to the satisfaction of the court that he has lawfully acquired the property in question. – Whenever any public officer or employee has acquired during his incumbency an amount or property which is manifestly out of proportion to his salary as such public officer or employee and to his other lawful income and the income from legitimately acquired property. Sections 2 and 6 of RA 1379[76] provide: xxx xxx Section 2. said property shall be presumed prima facie to have been unlawfully acquired. But even assuming for the sake of argument that laches had already set in. 6. in addition. refer this case to the corresponding Executive Department for administrative or criminal action. forfeited in favor of the State. The Court may.[74] As a final point. and by virtue of such judgment the property aforesaid shall become the property of the State. hence subject to forfeiture. (2) The Propriety of Forfeiture The matter of summary judgment having been thus settled. From the above-quoted provisions of the law. if its amount or value is manifestly disproportionate to the official salary and other lawful income of the public officer who owns it. or both. then the court shall declare such property in question. Hence. it must be emphasized that laches is not a mere question of time but is principally a question of the inequity or unfairness of permitting a right or claim to be enforced or asserted. the following facts must be established in order that forfeiture or seizure of the Swiss deposits may be effected: . Filing of petition.

1986. Marcos who once served as a member of the Interim Batasang Pambansa from 1978 to 1984 and as Metro Manila Governor.000 P1. Marcos and Imelda R.000/year P718.[80] The Certification showed that.750: Ferdinand E. dollars on the basis of the corresponding peso-dollar exchange rates prevailing during the .288. e. i. Marcos.833. Senator.[78] Respondent Mrs. 1965 to February 25. respondents admitted in their answer the contents of paragraph 5 of the petition as to the personal circumstances of Imelda R. from June 1976 to February 1986.583.. or a total of P2.000/year 1985 at P110. the legitimate income of the public officer.000/year P660. whether it be in his name or otherwise. their total accumulated salaries amounted to P2.570. is grossly disproportionate to.00 Imelda R.[79] The combined accumulated salaries of the Marcos couple were reflected in the Certification dated May 27. as Minister June 1976-1985 at P75. Hence. Converted to U. Senate President and President of the Republic of the Philippines from December 1. Marcos.000 In addition to their accumulated salaries from 1966 to 1985 are the Marcos couple‘s combined salaries from January to February 1986 in the amount of P30. concurrently Minister of Human Settlements.[77] Likewise. Marcos had accumulated salaries in the amount of P1.(1) (2) ownership by the public officer of money or property acquired during his incumbency.33.000 800.570.000 110. 1986 issued by then Minister of Budget and Management Alberto Romulo.S. Marcos also admitted in paragraph 10 of her answer the allegations of paragraph 11 of the petition for forfeiture which referred to the accumulated salaries of respondents Ferdinand E. from 1966 to 1985. Marcos and Imelda R. respectively.33. and the extent to which the amount of that money or property exceeds.750.319. Paragraph 4 of respondent Marcoses' answer categorically admitted the allegations in paragraph 4 of the petition for forfeiture as to the personal circumstances of Ferdinand E. Marcos. Marcos as a public official who served without interruption as Congressman. Ferdinand E.000/year 1977-1984 at P100. That spouses Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos were public officials during the time material to the instant case was never in dispute. as President 1966-1976 at P60.000 andP718.

Ferdinand E. Sec. the total amount had an equivalent value of $304. respectively. under the 1973 Constitution. 11 – No Member of the National Assembly shall appear as counsel before any court inferior to a court with appellate jurisdiction.[84] Likewise. or be financially interested directly or indirectly in any contract with. as in the pre-trial of the case. during their tenure.‖[85] In fact. facts pleaded in the petition and answer. Article VII. or instrumentality thereof. or in any franchise . hold any other office except when otherwise provided in this Constitution. as required by law.[82] Thus. Ferdinand E.43 should be held as the only known lawful income of respondents since they did not file any Statement of Assets and Liabilities (SAL). The dollar equivalent was arrived at by using the official annual rates of exchange of the Philippine peso and the US dollar from 1965 to 1985 as well as the official monthly rates of exchange in January and February 1986 issued by the Center for Statistical Information of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. x x x. who are not permitted to contradict them or subsequently take a position contrary to or inconsistent with such admissions.372. (b) in the course of the trial either by verbal or written manifestations or stipulations. or (c) in other stages of judicial proceedings. from which their net worth could be determined. Neither shall he. Sec. made by a party in the course of the proceedings in the same case does not require proof.[83] The sum of $304. under the 1935 Constitution.43. or in any franchise or special privilege granted by the Government or any other subdivision. [81] It is settled that judicial admissions may be made: (a) in the pleadings filed by the parties. are deemed admissions of petitioner and respondents. participate directly or indirectly in the management of any business. nor may they practice any profession. was expressly prohibited under the 1973 Constitution: Article VII. verbal or written. Marcos as President could ―not receive during his tenure any other emolument from the Government or any other source. his management of businesses. like the administration of foundations to accumulate funds. Marcos as President could not receive ―any other emolument from the Government or any of its subdivisions and instrumentalities‖. 4(2) – The President and the Vice-President shall not. Section 4. Prescinding from the aforesaid admissions. The admission may be contradicted only by showing that it was made through palpable mistake or that no such admission was made. Rule 129 of the Rules of Court provides that: Section 4. be interested financially in any contract with. as in the case at bar. Besides. – Judicial admissions – An admission. directly or indirectly. including any government owned or controlled corporation. agency.applicable period when said salaries were received.372.

Their failure to file their SAL was in itself a violation of law and to allow them to successfully assail the Republic for not presenting their SAL would reward them for their violation of the law. respondents should have specifically stated the same in their answer. Section 9 of the PCGG Rules and Regulations provides that. or practice any profession. Marcos' Manifestation and Constancia dated May 5. (d) and (e) of RA 1379. it was enough to specify the known lawful income of respondents. Article VIII hereof and may not appear as counsel before any court or administrative body. 1999. the value of the accumulated assets.or special privilege granted by the Government. The respondent Marcos couple did not file any Statement of Assets and Liabilities (SAL) from which their net worth could be determined. and shall also be subject to such other disqualification as may be provided by law. paragraphs (c). the admissions made by them in their various pleadings and documents were valid. As the Act is a penal statute. or instrumentality thereof including any government owned or controlled corporation during his term of office. Further. Sec. Article IX. Respondents argue that petitioner was not able to establish a prima facie case for the forfeiture of the Swiss funds since it failed to prove the essential elements under Section 3. the latter were in a better position to know if there were such other sources of lawful income. and the Undertaking dated February 10. 1 and 2 must be out of proportion to the known lawful income of such persons. agency. contrary to the claim of respondents. We hold that it was not for petitioner to establish the Marcoses‘ other lawful income or income from legitimately acquired property for the presumption to apply because. Insofar as petitioner Republic was concerned. properties and other material possessions of those covered by Executive Order Nos. Their only known lawful income of $304. or manage any business.372. It is of record that respondents judicially admitted that the money deposited with the Swiss banks belonged to them. as between petitioner and respondents. . the General/Supplemental Agreements. or any subdivision. its provisions are mandatory and should thus be construed strictly against the petitioner and liberally in favor of respondent Marcoses. We agree with petitioner that respondent Marcoses made judicial admissions of their ownership of the subject Swiss bank deposits in their answer. And if indeed there was such other lawful income. Mrs. We take note of the fact that the Associate Justices of the Sandiganbayan were unanimous in holding that respondents had made judicial admissions of their ownership of the Swiss funds. He shall not intervene in any matter before any office of the government for his pecuniary benefit. 7 – The Prime Minister and Members of the Cabinet shall be subject to the provision of Section 11. 1999. in determining prima facie evidence of ill-gotten wealth.43 can therefore legally and fairly serve as basis for determining the existence of a prima facie case of forfeiture of the Swiss funds.

As discussed earlier. but even after 7 years. 1990. aside from admitting the existence of the subject funds. The whereas clause in the General Agreement declared that: WHEREAS. Respondents specifically DENY PARAGRAPH 23 insofar as it alleges that respondents clandestinely stashed the country's wealth in Switzerland and hid the same under layers and layers of foundations and corporate entities for being false. While the Supplemental Agreement warranted. that the $356 million belongs in principle to the Republic of the Philippines provided certain conditionalities are met. The General[87] and Supplemental[88] Agreements executed by petitioner and respondents on December 28. respondents likewise admitted ownership thereof. [89] They insist that nothing in those agreements could thus be admitted in evidence against them because they stood . Section 11.In their answer. Respondents make much capital of the pronouncement by this Court that the General and Supplemental Agreements were null and void. respondents‘ willingness to agree to an amicable settlement with the Republic only affirmed their ownership of the Swiss deposits for the simple reason that no person would acquiesce to any concession over such huge dollar deposits if he did not in fact own them. (emphasis supplied) By qualifying their acquisition of the Swiss bank deposits as lawful. Respondent Mrs. the FIRST PARTY has obtained a judgment from the Swiss Federal Tribunal on December 21. that: In consideration of the foregoing. Marcos also admitted ownership of the Swiss bank deposits by failing to deny under oath the genuineness and due execution of certain actionable documents bearing her signature attached to the petition. inter alia. the parties hereby agree that the PRIVATE PARTY shall be entitled to the equivalent of 25% of the amount that may be eventually withdrawn from said $356 million Swiss deposits. the FIRST PARTY has not been able to procure a final judgment of conviction against the PRIVATE PARTY. respondents unwittingly admitted their ownership thereof. Rule 8[86] of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure provides that material averments in the complaint shall be deemed admitted when not specifically denied. the truth being that respondents' aforesaid properties were lawfully acquired. The stipulations set forth in the General and Supplemental Agreements undeniably indicated the manifest intent of respondents to enter into a compromise with petitioner. Corollarily. Paragraph 22 of respondents' answer stated: 22. 1993 further bolstered the claim of petitioner Republic that its case for forfeiture was proven in accordance with the requisites of Sections 2 and 3 of RA 1379.

We quote the salient portions of Ferdinand Jr. or by reason of not being signed. executed or delivered. Otherwise stated. Jr. remain binding on the respondents. an offer of compromise is not an admission of any liability and is not admissible in evidence against the offeror. FERNANDO: Mr. JR. in the decision dated September 19. did you ever have any meetings with PCGG Chairman Magtanggol C. ATTY. or incompetency of a party thereto. Marcos. The reasons relied upon by the Court never in the least bit even touched on the veracity and truthfulness of respondents’ admission with respect to their ownership of the Swiss funds.[92] The testimony of respondent Ferdinand Marcos. during the hearing on the motion for the approval of the Compromise Agreement on April 29.: Yes. and (3) the government‘s undertaking to cause the dismissal of all cases filed against the Marcoses pending before the Sandiganbayan and other courts encroached on the powers of the judiciary. provides that ―in civil cases. respondents cannot now deny that they voluntarily admitted owning the subject Swiss funds.‘s formal declarations in open court: ATTY. notwithstanding the fact that the agreements themselves were later declared null and void. [91] A written statement is nonetheless competent as an admission even if it is contained in a document which is not itself effective for the purpose for which it is made. Accordingly. 1998 also lent credence to the allegations of petitioner Republic that respondents admitted ownership of the Swiss bank accounts. (2) the PCGG‘s commitment to exempt from all forms of taxes the properties to be retained by the Marcos heirs was against the Constitution. I have had very many meetings in fact with Chairman.‖ We find no merit in this contention. 2000 could not have been better said: x x x The declaration of nullity of the two agreements rendered the same without legal effects but it did not detract from the admissions of the respondents contained therein. either by reason of illegality. MARCOS. Besides. Rule 130[90] of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. as quoted above. The declaration of nullity of said agreements was premised on the following constitutional and statutory infirmities: (1) the grant of criminal immunity to the Marcos heirs was against the law. although they may be unenforceable. contracts have been held as competent evidence of admissions. The following observation of Sandiganbayan Justice Catalino Castañeda. under Section 27. Jr. having made certain admissions in those agreements. Gunigundo? F.on the same ground as an accepted offer which. the admissions made in said agreements. FERNANDO: Would you recall when the first meeting occurred? .

we are very much always in search of resolution to the problem of the family and any approach that has been made us. I was a little surprised because we hadn‘t really discussed the details of the transfer of the funds. JR.: The nature of our meetings was solely concerned with negotiations towards achieving some kind of agreement between the Philippine government and the Marcos family.: I assumed that we are beginning to implement the agreement because this was forwarded through the Philippine government lawyers through our lawyers and then. FERNANDO: What was your reaction when Atty. we have entertained. And so my reaction was the same as what I have always … why not? Maybe this is the one that will finally put an end to this problem. MARCOS. JR. FERNANDO: In connection with the ongoing talks to compromise the various cases initiated by PCGG against your family? F. after being apprised of this contract in connection herewith? F. Mesina informed you of this possibility? F. we are always open. The discussions that led up to the compromise agreement were initiated by our then counsel Atty. what were the true amounts of the assets in the bank? PJ GARCHITORENA: So.: My reaction to all of these approaches is that I am always open. JR.: Well. that the agreement was perfected and that we were xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx xxx . what the bank accounts. MARCOS. we are talking about liquid assets here? Just Cash? F. to me. But nevertheless. MARCOS. JR. I was happy to see that as far as the PCGG is concerned. what the mechanism would be. any assets. FERNANDO: Basically. Anything that was under the Marcos name in any of the banks in Switzerland which may necessarily be not cash.[95] xxx PJ GARCHITORENA: x x x What did you do in other words. subsequently.PJ GARCHITORENA: In connection with what? ATTY. basically. MARCOS. Simeon Mesina x x x.[94] xxx ATTY.[93] xxx ATTY.

The rule is that the testimony on the witness stand partakes of the nature of a formal judicial admission when a party testifies clearly and unequivocally to a fact which is peculiarly within his own knowledge. in accordance with Section 8. of the instruments bearing her signature. xxx xxx xxx Respondents‘ ownership of the Swiss bank accounts as borne out by Mrs. much less the genuineness and due execution. deliberately concedes a fact.‘s testimony that the Marcos family agreed to negotiate with the Philippine government in the hope of finally putting an end to the problems besetting the Marcos family regarding the Swiss accounts. 1999. being the sole beneficiary of the dollar deposits in the name of the various foundations alleged in the case. Marcos owns 90% of the subject matter of the aboveentitled case.[96] Ferdinand Jr.[98] In her Manifestation[99] dated May 26. As already mentioned. in her Constancia[101] dated May 6. She further made the following manifestations: xxx xxx xxx .[97] It is apparent from Ferdinand Jr. Marcos. Likewise. she failed to specifically deny under oath the authenticity of such documents. was tantamount to a judicial admission of the genuineness and due execution of said instruments.beginning to implement it and that was a source of satisfaction to me because I thought that finally it will be the end. And her claim that she is merely a beneficiary of the Swiss deposits is belied by her own signatures on the appended copies of the documents substantiating her ownership of the funds in the name of the foundations. This was doubtlessly an acknowledgment of ownership on their part. such concession has the force of a judicial admission. Admissions of a party in his testimony are receivable against him. respondent Imelda Marcos furthermore revealed the following: That respondent Imelda R. taken in context and in their entirety. especially those involving ―William Saunders‖ and ―Jane Ryan‖ which actually referred to Ferdinand Marcos and Imelda Marcos. If a party. Imelda Marcos prayed for the approval of the Compromise Agreement and the subsequent release and transfer of the $150 million to the rightful owner. as a witness. That in fact only 10% of the subject matter in the above-entitled case belongs to the estate of the late President Ferdinand E. Marcos' manifestation is as bright as sunlight. were a confirmation of respondents‘ recognition of their ownership of the Swiss bank deposits.'s pronouncements. 1998. Rule 8[100] of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. respectively. That failure of Imelda Marcos to specifically deny the existence.

the Republic may yield to the Marcoses. and Maria Irene Marcos-Araneta filed a motion[102] on May 4. Jr. 1995.‖ On the other hand. 1998. The Republic‘s cause of action over the full amount is its forfeiture in favor of th e government if found to be ill-gotten. Such display of deep. The subject Undertaking brought to light their readiness to pay the human rights victims out of the funds held in escrow in the PNB. confirmed the Marcoses‘ ownership of the Swiss bank deposits. Conversely. by releasing. Consistent with the foregoing. and the Marcoses having committed themselves to helping the less fortunate. assigning and or waiving US$150 million of the funds held in escrow under the Escrow Agreements dated August 14. Truly. the PNB and the Marcos foundations on February 10. 1999. 1998 asking the Sandiganbayan to place the res (Swiss deposits) in custodia legis: 7. in the interest of peace. the Republic of the Philippines sympathizes with the plight of the human rights victims-plaintiffs in the aforementioned litigation through the Second Party. . Lastly. If it turns out that the account is of lawful origin. its dissipation or misappropriation by the petitioner looms as a distinct possibility. Ferdinand Marcos. 1997. defendant MADAM IMELDA ROMUALDEZ MARCOS. hereby affirms her agreement with the Republic for the release and transfer of the US Dollar 150 million for proper disposition. without prejudice to the final outcome of the litigation respecting the ownership of the remainder. reconciliation and unity. On the other hand. the Undertaking[103] entered into by the PCGG. and January 8. by filing said motion. Therefore. respondents Maria Imelda Marcos-Manotoc. Again. the Marcoses defend that it is a legitimate asset. Indeed. (underscoring supplied) xxx xxx xxx 3. the Marcoses must yield to the Republic. It stated: WHEREAS. personal interest can only come from someone who believes that he has a marked and intimate right over the considerable dollar deposits. the above statements were indicative of Imelda‘s admission of the Marcoses‘ ownership of the Swiss deposits as in fact ―the Marcoses defend that it (S wiss deposits) is a legitimate (Marcos) asset. in firm abidance thereby. the Marcos children revealed their ownership of the said deposits. although the Republic is not obligated to do so under final judgments of the Swiss courts dated December 10 and 19. both parties have an inchoate right of ownership over the account.2. the prevailing situation is fraught with danger! Unless the aforesaid Swiss deposits are placed in custodia legis or within the Court‘s protective mantle. desires to assist in the satisfaction of the judgment awards of said human rights victims-plaintiffs.

and that all proofs submitted by him contrary thereto or inconsistent therewith should be ignored. may be given in evidence against such party after the partnership or agency is shown by evidence other than such act or declaration. respondents‘ judicial admission of ownership of the Swiss deposits is definitely binding on them. individually and totally. ─ An admission. There is no doubt in our mind that respondent Marcoses admitted ownership of the Swiss bank deposits. while holding the title. or omission of the latter. verbal or written. [105] In the absence of a compelling reason to the contrary. 29. We analyzed. we considered and examined. in relation to the property. or other person jointly interested with the party. This Court carefully scrutinized the proofs presented by the parties. materiality and implications of every pleading and document submitted in this case. Admission by co-partner or agent. by authority of the rules and jurisprudence. the act. The same rule applies to the act or declaration of a joint owner. Admission by privies. is evidence against the former. 4. The individual and separate admissions of each respondent bind all of them pursuant to Sections 29 and 31. made by a party in the course of the proceedings in the same case. [107] . ─ The act or declaration of a partner or agent of the party within the scope of his authority and during the existence of the partnership or agency. All told. [106] SEC.‖ The Court is fully aware of the relevance. whether an objection is interposed by the adverse party or not.[104] This doctrine is embodied in Section 4. even if it might have bordered on factual adjudication which. the foregoing disquisition negates the claim of respondents that ―petitioner failed to prove that they acquired or own the Swiss funds‖ and that ―it was only by arbitrarily isolating and taking certain statements made by private respondents out of context that petitioner was able to treat these as judicial admissions. 31. joint debtor. Owing to the far-reaching historical and political implications of this case. assign and/or waive all its rights and interests over said US$150 million to the aforementioned human rights victims-plaintiffs. the Third Party is likewise willing to release. does not require proof. Rule 130 of the Rules of Court: SEC. is not usually done by this Court. assessed and weighed them to ascertain if each piece of evidence rightfully qualified as an admission.WHEREAS. Rule 129 of the Rules of Court: SEC. the evidence of the parties. We have always adhered to the familiar doctrine that an admission made in the pleadings cannot be controverted by the party making such admission and becomes conclusive on him. Judicial admissions. The admission may be contradicted only by showing that it was made through palpable mistake or that no such admission was made. ─ Where one derives title to property from another. declaration.

and said amount is manifestly out of proportion to his salary as such public officer or employee and to his other lawful income and the income from legitimately acquired property. money or property is manifestly out of proportion to the public officer‘s salary and his other lawful income. And where several co-parties to the record are jointly interested in the subject matter of the controversy. The Marcos couple indubitably acquired and owned properties during their term of office. the first element is clearly extant. It is undisputed that spouses Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos were former public officers. privity exists among the respondents in this case. as its findings and conclusions were not borne out by the voluminous records of this case.[108] Consequently. Hence. We believe petitioner was able to establish the prima facie presumption that the assets and properties acquired by the Marcoses were manifestly and patently disproportionate to their aggregate salaries as public officials.[110] Respondents insist that the Sandiganbayan is correct in ruling that petitioner Republic has failed to establish a prima facie case for the forfeiture of the Swiss deposits.The declarations of a person are admissible against a party whenever a ―privity of estate‖ exists between the declarant and the party. It is the proof of this third element that is crucial in determining whether a prima facie presumption has been established in this case. There is proof of the existence and ownership of these assets and properties and it suffices to comply with the second element. The third requirement is met if it can be shown that such assets. We disagree. x x x‖ The elements which must concur for this prima facie presumption to apply are: (1) (2) (3) the offender is a public officer or employee. an admission of one in privity with a party to the record is competent. Petitioner Republic presented not only a schedule indicating the lawful income of the Marcos spouses during their incumbency but also evidence that they had huge deposits beyond such lawful income in Swiss banks under the names of five different foundations.[109] Without doubt. he must have acquired a considerable amount of money or property during his incumbency. the admission of one is competent against all. to say the least. the term ―privity of estate‖ generally denoting a succession in rights. Otherwise . The sudden turn-around of the Sandiganbayan was really strange. The second element deals with the amount of money or property acquired by the public officer during his incumbency. Section 2 of RA 1379 explicitly states that ―whenever any public officer or employee has acquired during his incumbency an amount of property which is manifestly out of proportion to his salary as such public officer or employee and to his other lawful income and the income from legitimately acquired property. the five groups of Swiss accounts were admittedly owned by them. said property shall be presumed prima facie to have been unlawfully acquired. In fact.

an indispensable party must be impleaded for the complete determination of the suit. Section 7. petitioner presented enough evidence to convince us that the Marcoses had dollar deposits amounting to US $356 million representing the balance of the Swiss accounts of the five foundations. unless the fact thus prima facie established by legal presumption is disproved. that the total amount of the Swiss deposits was considerably out of proportion to the known lawful income of the Marcoses. Marcos argues that the foreign foundations should have been impleaded as they were indispensable parties without whom no complete determination of the issues could be made. Generally.43 during their incumbency as government officials. if the court cannot render justice between the parties in his absence. It was sufficient for the petition for forfeiture to state the approximate amount of money and property acquired by the respondents. 1 and No. and their total government salaries. and other material possessions of those persons covered by Executive Orders No. the presumption that said dollar deposits were unlawfully acquired was duly established. therefore. 2. whose value is out of proportion to their known lawful income is prima facie deemed illgotten wealth.[111] Respondent Mrs. the court is not divested of its power to render a decision even in the absence of indispensable parties. it must stand as proved. and if this interest is such that it cannot be separated from that of the parties to the suit. – Any accumulation of assets. Furthermore. Section 9 of the PCGG Rules and Regulations states: Prima Facie Evidence. Thus. Considering. the non-inclusion of the foreign foundations violated the conditions prescribed by the Swiss government regarding the deposit of the funds in escrow. A presumption is prima facie proof of the fact presumed and.[114] An indispensable party[115] has been defined as one: [who] must have a direct interest in the litigation. way beyond their aggregate legitimate income of only US$304.[113] taken from Rule 19b of the American Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. failure to join an indispensable party does not divest the court of jurisdiction since the rule regarding indispensable parties is founded on equitable considerations and is not jurisdictional. if the decree will have an injurious effect . Rule 3 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. However. properties. though such judgment is not binding on the non-joined party.stated. She asserts that the failure of petitioner Republic to implead the foundations rendered the judgment void as the joinder of indispensable parties was a sine qua non exercise of judicial power. Indeed.372. the burden of proof was on the respondents to dispute this presumption and show by clear and convincing evidence that the Swiss deposits were lawfully acquired and that they had other legitimate sources of income. deprived them of their day in court and denied them their rights under the Swiss constitution and international law.[112] The Court finds that petitioner Republic did not err in not impleading the foreign foundations. provides for the compulsory joinder of indispensable parties. an amount way.

In the present case. as formal owners. Sandiganbayan. Thus. or having received ill-gotten funds. fraud or other illicit conduct – in other words. The directive given by the Swiss court for the foundations to participate in the proceedings was for the purpose of protecting whatever nominal interest they might have had in the assets as formal owners. In Republic vs.[118] But this was already refuted by no less than Mrs. must be given an opportunity to participate in the proceedings hinged on the assumption that they owned a nominal share of the assets. The admission of respondent Imelda Marcos only confirmed what was already generally known: that the foundations were established precisely to hide the money stolen by the Marcos spouses from petitioner Republic. that the foreign foundations owned even a nominal part of the assets in question. their impleading is not proper on the strength alone of their having been formed with ill-gotten funds. There are two essential tests of an indispensable party: (1) can relief be afforded the plaintiff without the presence of the other party? and (2) can the case be decided on its merits without prejudicing the rights of the other party? [116] There is. however. But inasmuch as their ownership was subsequently repudiated by Imelda Marcos. 1998 Manifestation before the Sandiganbayan that she was the sole beneficiary of 90% of the subject matter in controversy with the remaining 10% belonging to the estate of Ferdinand Marcos. The judgment ordering the return of the $356 million was neither inimical to the foundations‘ interests nor inconsistent with equity and good conscience. The rulings of the Swiss court that the foundations.[119] this Court ruled that impleading the firms which are the res of the action was unnecessary: ―And as to corporations organized with ill-gotten wealth.upon his interest. Indeed.[117] Viewed against this admission. there was an admission by respondent Imelda Marcos in her May 26. without more. absent any other particular wrongdoing on their part… Such showing of having been formed with. or if the final determination of the controversy in his absence will be inconsistent with equity and good conscience. does not. they could no longer be considered as indispensable parties and their participation in the proceedings became unnecessary. It negated whatever illusion there was. Marcos herself. the foreign foundations were not indispensable parties. warrant identifying the . this can only be determined in the context and by the facts of the particular suit or litigation. she cannot now argue that the ruling of the Sandiganbayan violated the conditions set by the Swiss court. no fixed formula for determining who is an indispensable party. if any. but are not themselves guilty of misappropriation. the res thereof – there is no need to implead them either. the companies themselves are not the object or thing involved in the action. Their non-participation in the proceedings did not prevent the court from deciding the case on its merits and according full relief to petitioner Republic. however strong or convincing.

for without them no judgment may be rendered. in principle. in fact even after rendition of judgment by this Court. Rule 5 of the Rules of Court [specifying the remedy of amendment during trial to authorize or to conform to the evidence]. as where said firms were allegedly used. and there is. asportation. and actively cooperated with the defendants.‖ [121] . Section 1. Distinguished in terms of juridical personality and legal culpability from their erring members or stockholders. their creation or organization was merely the result of their members‘ (or stockholders‘) manipulations and maneuvers to conceal the illegal origins of the assets or monies invested therein. etc.. particularly in the case of indispensable parties. set out in Section 11. Rule 3 of the Rules of Court. the foreign foundations here were set up to conceal the illegally acquired funds of the Marcos spouses.. of the embezzlement. Rule 20 [governing amendments before trial]. since their presence and participation is essential to the very life of the action.‖ Just like the corporations in the aforementioned case. innocent acquisition to illegally amassed wealth – at the least.g. no cause of action against them and no ground to implead them as defendants in said actions. and that. where it appears that the complaint otherwise indicates their identity and character as such indispensable parties. not so as place on the Government the onus of impleading the former with the latter in actions to recover such wealth. amendments of the complaint in order to implead them should be freely allowed. as instruments or conduits for conversion of public funds and property or illicit or fraudulent obtention of favored government contracts. Sandiganbayan:[120] ―Even in those cases where it might reasonably be argued that the failure of the Government to implead the sequestered corporations as defendants is indeed a procedural abberation. they are simply the res in the actions for the recovery of illegally acquired wealth. slight reflection would nevertheless lead to the conclusion that the defect is not fatal. as held in the previously cited case of Republic vs. that the foundations were indispensable parties. etc. Assuming arguendo. however. even on appeal.corporations in question with the person who formed or made use of them to give the color or appearance of lawful. the failure of petitioner to implead them was a curable error. that gave rise to the Government‘s cause of action for recovery.. they were simply the res in the action for recovery of ill-gotten wealth and did not have to be impleaded for lack of cause of action or ground to implead them. Section 10. Thus. in relation to the rule respecting omission of so-called necessary or indispensable parties. In this light. It is relevant in this context to advert to the old familiar doctrines that the omission to implead such parties ―is a mere technical defect which can be cured at any stage of the proceedings even after judgment‖. said corporations are not themselves guilty of the sins of the latter. but one correctible under applicable adjective rules – e.

Earlier PJ Garchitorena had quoted extensively from the unofficial translation of one of these Swiss decisions in his ponencia dated July 29. 1999 when he denied the motion to release US$150 Million to the human rights victims. the Swiss deposits should be considered illgotten wealth and forfeited in favor of the State in accordance with Section 6 of RA 1379: SEC. The better view is that non-joinder is not a ground to dismiss the suit or annul the judgment. respondent Marcoses failed to justify the lawful nature of their acquisition of the said assets. such cases do not jibe with the matter at hand. through motion or on order of the court on its own initiative.Although there are decided cases wherein the non-joinder of indispensable parties in fact led to the dismissal of the suit or the annulment of judgment. she should have moved for their inclusion. which was allowable at any stage of the proceedings. While we are in reality perplexed by such an incomprehensible change of heart. Rule 3[122] of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. there might nevertheless not be any real need to belabor the issue. It prohibits the dismissal of a suit on the ground of nonjoinder or misjoinder of parties and allows the amendment of the complaint at any stage of the proceedings. Instead she assailed the judgment rendered. [126] Thus. She never did.[125] Mere delay in filing the joinder motion does not necessarily result in the waiver of the right as long as the delay is excusable. allows the joinder of indispensable parties even after judgment has been entered if such is needed to afford the moving party full relief. was binding on all the parties before it though not on the absent party. even in the absence of indispensable parties. The presentation of . 6. from which our Section 7. petitioner Republic contends that the Honorable Sandiganbayan Presiding Justice Francis Garchitorena committed grave abuse of discretion in reversing himself on the ground that the original copies of the authenticated Swiss decisions and their authenticated translations were not submitted to the court a quo. jurisprudence on the Federal Rules of Procedure. [127] If she really felt that she could not be granted full relief due to the absence of the foreign foundations.─ If the respondent is unable to show to the satisfaction of the court that he has lawfully acquired the property in question. Hence. Marcos cannot correctly argue that the judgment rendered by the Sandiganbayan was void due to the non-joinder of the foreign foundations. [123] Likewise. In the face of undeniable circumstances and the avalanche of documentary evidence against them. then the court shall declare such property forfeited in favor of the State. THE FAILURE TO PRESENT AUTHENTICATED TRANSLATIONS OF THE SWISS DECISIONS Finally. And the spirit of the law is reflected in Section 11. Rule 3[124] on indispensable parties was copied. and by virtue of such judgment the property aforesaid shall become property of the State x x x. The rule on joinder of indispensable parties is founded on equity. Judgment. respondent Mrs. The court had jurisdiction to render judgment which.

.. RESOLUTION .60 as of January 31. are hereby forfeited in favor of petitioner Republic of the Philippines. In this instance. 149453. respondent.. the evidence on hand tilts convincingly in favor of petitioner Republic. For that matter. C.373. The assailed Resolution of the Sandiganbayan dated January 31.. the Sandiganbayan‘s decision was not dependent on the determination of the Swiss courts. Sandoval-Gutierrez. Puno. SO ORDERED. No. STATE PROSECUTORS PETER L. Panganiban. despite the absence of the authenticated translations of the Swiss decisions. THE SECRETARY OF JUSTICE. 2002 is SET ASIDE. PANFILO M. and Tinga. the petition is hereby GRANTED. ZACARIAS. J. LACSON. WHEREFORE.. JJ.. 2003] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. Carpio-Morales. DIRECTOR GENERAL OF THE PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE. Austria-Martinez. 2ND ASSISTANT CITY PROSECUTOR CONRADO M. The release of the Swiss funds held in escrow in the PNB is dependent solely on the decision of this jurisdiction that said funds belong to the petitioner Republic.the authenticated translations of the original copies of the Swiss decision was not de rigueur for the public respondent to make findings of fact and reach its conclusions. EN BANC [G. petitioners.175. Sr. no part.J. JAMOLIN and CITY PROSECUTOR OF QUEZON CITY CLARO ARELLANO. 2002. CHIEF STATE PROSECUTOR JOVENCITO ZUÑO. plus interest. vs. Carpio. Davide. Ynares-Santiago. and Vitug. in the result Quisumbing. In short. Azcuna. Bellosillo. ONG and RUBEN A.. Callejo. concur. What is important is our own assessment of the sufficiency of the evidence to rule in favor of either petitioner Republic or respondent Marcoses. on official leave. J. The Swiss deposits which were transferred to and are now deposited in escrow at the Philippine National Bank in the estimated aggregate amount of US$658. Jr. neither is this Court‘s. April 1. JJ.R.

: Before the Court is the petitioners‘ Motion for Reconsideration of the Resolution dated May 28. (1) whether the provisional dismissal of the cases had the express consent of the accused. who was 16 years old. Rolando Siplon. Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure could be given retroactive effect.. of the 44th Infantry Batallion of the Philippine Army. (3) whether the 2-year period to revive it has already lapsed. Joel Amora. 2002. the respondent and his co-accused were charged with multiple murder for the shooting and killing of eleven male persons identified as Manuel Montero.. (5) whether notices to the offended parties were given before the cases of respondent Lacson were dismissed by then Judge Agnir. Meleubren Sorronda. The trial court was thus directed to resolve the following: .. Jevy Redillas. Welbor Elcamel. J. In the aforesaid criminal cases. The Court further held that the reckoning date of the two-year bar had to be first determined whether it shall be from the date of the order of then Judge Agnir. Sherwin Abalora.CALLEJO. dismissing the cases. who was 19 years old. SR. for the determination of several factual issues relative to the application of Section 8 of Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure on the dismissal of Criminal Cases Nos. bandied as members of the Kuratong Baleleng Gang. Jr. The respondent opposed petitioners‘ motion for reconsideration. former Corporal of the 44th Infantry Batallion of the Philippine Army. Pacifico Montero. Ray Abalora. Branch 81. there is still a need to determine whether the requirements for its application are attendant. The Court also held therein that although Section 8. Q-99-81679 to Q-99-81689 filed against the respondent and his co-accused with the said court. (4) whether there is any justification for the filing of the cases beyond the 2-year period. Jr. remanding this case to the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Quezon City. or from the dates of receipt thereof by the .. [1] [2] [3] [4] The Court ruled in the Resolution sought to be reconsidered that the provisional dismissal of Criminal Cases Nos. (6) whether there were affidavits of desistance executed by the relatives of the three (3) other victims. (2) whether it was ordered by the court after notice to the offended party. a former Corporal of the Philippine Army. and Alex Neri. who was 14 years old. SPO1 Carlito Alap-ap of the Zamboanga PNP. Q-99-81679 to Q-99-81689 were with the express consent of the respondent as he himself moved for said provisional dismissal when he filed his motion for judicial determination of probable cause and for examination of witnesses. (7) whether the multiple murder cases against respondent Lacson are being revived within or beyond the 2-year bar.

Jr. The records allegedly indicate clearly that only the handling city prosecutor was furnished a copy of the notice of hearing on said motion. According to the Court. 1999 hearing on the respondent‘s motion for judicial determination of the existence of probable cause. of Criminal Cases Nos. In support of their Motion for Reconsideration.. According to the petitioners. if the cases were revived only after the two-year bar. Q-99-81679 to Q-99-81689. The Court shall resolve the issues seriatim. Disagreeing with the ruling of the Court. RULE 117 OF THE REVISED RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE IS NOT APPLICABLE TO CRIMINAL CASES NOS. Q-99-81679 to Q-99-81689. the petitioners contend that (a) Section 8. or even agree to a provisional dismissal thereof. The petitioners further submit that it is not necessary that the case be remanded to the RTC to determine whether private complainants were notified of the March 22. The respondent allegedly admitted in his pleadings filed with the Court of Appeals and during the hearing thereat that he did not file any motion to dismiss said cases. the State must be given the opportunity to justify its failure to comply with the said time-bar. I. or from the date of effectivity of the new rule. the petitioners maintain that the respondent did not give his express consent to the dismissal by Judge Agnir. However. Q-99-81679 TO Q-99-81689. The petitioners aver that Section 8. the State is not precluded from presenting compelling reasons to justify the revival of cases beyond the two-year bar. Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure is not applicable to Criminal Cases Nos. Moreover. the heirs of the victims were allegedly not given prior notices of the dismissal of the said cases by Judge Agnir. Godwin Valdez was properly retained and authorized .various offended parties. Jr. the respondent‘s express consent to the provisional dismissal of the cases and the notice to all the heirs of the victims of the respondent‘s motion and the hearing thereon are conditions sine qua non to the application of the time-bar in the second paragraph of the new rule. and (b) the time-bar in said rule should not be applied retroactively.. Jr. 1999. issued his resolution of March 29. It emphasized that the new rule fixes a time-bar to penalize the State for its inexcusable delay in prosecuting cases already filed in court. There is allegedly no evidence that private prosecutor Atty. SECTION 8. Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure is not applicable to Criminal Cases Nos. Q-99-81679 to Q99-81689 because the essential requirements for its application were not present when Judge Agnir.

and the private complainants merely prosecute the civil aspect thereof. namely: 1. stating that the respondent and the other accused filed separate but identical motions for the dismissal of the criminal cases should the trial court find no probable cause for the issuance of warrants of arrest against them. 8. on the other hand. Jr. With respect to offenses punishable by imprisonment of more than six (6) years. through the public and private prosecutors. the prosecution with the express conformity of the accused or the accused moves for a provisional (sin perjuicio) dismissal of the case. were duly notified of said motion and the hearing thereof. – A case shall not be provisionally dismissed except with the express consent of the accused and with notice to the offended party. It is their contention that Atty. Having invoked said rule before the petitioners-panel of prosecutors and before the Court of Appeals. He contends that it was sufficient that the public prosecutor was present during the March 22. . 1999 hearing on the motion for judicial determination of the existence of probable cause because criminal actions are always prosecuted in the name of the People. The respondent further asserts that the heirs of the victims. Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure reads: Sec. in his resolution. as found by the Court in its Resolution and Judge Agnir. shall become permanent one (1) year after issuance of the order without the case having been revived. He cites the resolution of Judge Agnir. the respondent himself moved for the provisional dismissal of the criminal cases. The provisional dismissal of offenses punishable by imprisonment not exceeding six (6) years or a fine of any amount. Jr. or both the prosecution and the accused move for a provisional dismissal of the case. The Court has reviewed the records and has found the contention of the petitioners meritorious. Section 8.by all the private complainants to represent them at said hearing. their provisional dismissal shall become permanent two (2) years after issuance of the order without the case having been revived. Provisional dismissal. or both. the respondent is burdened to establish the essential requisites of the first paragraph thereof. Valdez merely identified the purported affidavits of desistance and that he did not confirm the truth of the allegations therein. The respondent. insists that.

[5] Although the second paragraph of the new rule states that the order of dismissal shall become permanent one year after the issuance thereof without the case having been revived. if a criminal case is provisionally dismissed without the express consent of the accused or over his objection. The foregoing requirements are conditions sine qua non to the application of the time-bar in the second paragraph of the new rule. the provision should be construed to mean that the order of dismissal shall become permanent one year after service of the order of dismissal on the public prosecutor who has control of the prosecution without the criminal case having been revived. If a criminal case is provisionally dismissed with the express consent of the accused. 4. 3. The case may be revived or refiled even beyond the prescribed periods subject to the right of the accused to oppose the same on the ground of double jeopardy or that such revival or refiling is barred by the statute of limitations. the court issues an order granting the motion and dismissing the case provisionally. the writing amounts to express consent of the accused to a provisional dismissal of the case. direct. The public prosecutor cannot be expected to comply with the timeline unless he is served with a copy of the order of dismissal. the offended party is notified of the motion for a provisional dismissal of the case. the new rule would not apply. Where the accused writes on the motion of a prosecutor for a provisional dismissal of the case No objection or With my conformity. the public prosecutor is served with a copy of the order of provisional dismissal of the case. unequivocal consent requiring no inference or implication to supply its meaning.2. the case may be revived only within the periods provided in the new rule. [6] Express consent to a provisional dismissal is given either viva voce or in writing. The mere inaction or silence of the accused to a motion for a provisional dismissal of the case or his failure to object to a provisional dismissal does not amount to express consent. [7] [8] [9] [10] A motion of the accused for a provisional dismissal of a case is an express consent to such provisional dismissal. On the other hand. [11] [12] [13] . It is a positive. The raison d’ etre for the requirement of the express consent of the accused to a provisional dismissal of a criminal case is to bar him from subsequently asserting that the revival of the criminal case will place him in double jeopardy for the same offense or for an offense necessarily included therein.

A new preliminary investigation is also required if aside from the original accused. dismissed Criminal Cases Nos. the original witnesses of the prosecution or some of them may have recanted their testimonies or may have died or may no longer be available and new witnesses for the State have emerged. the role of a fiscal is not mainly to prosecute but essentially to do justice to every man and to assist the court in dispensing that justice. The respondent contended therein that until after the trial court shall have personally determined the presence of probable cause.The case may be revived by the State within the time-bar either by the refiling of the Information or by the filing of a new Information for the same offense or an offense necessarily included therein. the warrant should be recalled by the trial court. Section 2 of the Constitution and the decision of this Court in Allado v. For his part. or if under a new criminal complaint. a new preliminary investigation must be conducted before an Information is refiled or a new Information is filed. ―the fiscal is not called by the Rules of Court to wait in ambush. Q-99-81679 to Q-9981689. an order be issued directing the prosecution to present the private complainants and their witnesses at a hearing scheduled therefor. Irrefragably.‖ [14] [15] [16] In this case. However. or if under a new criminal complaint. no warrant of arrest should be issued against the respondent and if one had already been issued. The accused must be accorded the right to submit counter-affidavits and evidence. the prosecution did not file any motion for the provisional dismissal of the said criminal cases. Article III of the Constitution be conducted by this Honorable Court. among other cases. and . other persons are charged under a new criminal complaint for the same offense or necessarily included therein. the respondent has failed to prove that the first and second requisites of the first paragraph of the new rule were present when Judge Agnir. Diokno. and for this purpose. the original charge has been upgraded. the respondent merely filed a motion for judicial determination of probable cause and for examination of prosecution witnesses alleging that under Article III. the criminal liability of the accused is upgraded from that as an accessory to that as a principal. After all. Jr. in a case wherein after the provisional dismissal of a criminal case. there was a need for the trial court to conduct a personal determination of probable cause for the issuance of a warrant of arrest against respondent and to have the prosecution‘s witnesses summoned before the court for its examination. He then prayed therein that: [17] 1) a judicial determination of probable cause pursuant to Section 2. There would be no need of a new preliminary investigation.

” [19] During the hearing in the Court of Appeals on July 31. JUSTICE SALONGA: . and definitely declared that he did not file any motion to dismiss the criminal cases nor did he agree to a provisional dismissal thereof. made one further conclusion that not only was this case lacking in probable cause for purposes of the issuance of an arrest warrant but also it did not justify proceeding to trial. A copy of the aforesaid motion is hereto attached and made integral part hereof as Annex “A. Q-99-81679 to Q-99-81689. or. if issued. in his reply filed with the Court of Appeals.. therefore.2) warrants for the arrest of the accused-movants be withheld. Article III of the Constitution. Then Judge Agnir. that the dismissal of the case was made with the consent of the petitioner.. unequivocally. the respondent. through counsel. recalled in the meantime until the resolution of this incident. of Criminal Cases Nos. the reliefs prayed for therein by the petitioner are: (1) a judicial determination of probable cause pursuant to Section 2. thus: JUSTICE SALONGA: And it is your stand that the dismissal made by the Court was provisional in nature? ATTY. JUSTICE SALONGA: And it is expressly provided under Section 8 that a case shall not be provisionally dismissed except when it is with the express conformity of the accused. It cannot be said. In fact. [18] The respondent did not pray for the dismissal. particularly those who had withdrawn their affidavits. and (2) that warrants for the arrest of the accused be withheld. FORTUN: It was in (sic) that the accused did not ask for it. to a mere provisional dismissal of the cases. provisional or otherwise. ATTY. categorically. An examination of the Motion for Judicial Determination of Probable Cause and for Examination of Prosecution Witnesses filed by the petitioner and his other co-accused in the said criminal cases would show that the petitioner did not pray for the dismissal of the case. Neither did he ever agree. FORTUN: That is correct. On the contrary. upon the presentation by the parties of their witnesses. or if issued. impliedly or expressly. Other equitable reliefs are also prayed for. recalled in the meantime until the resolution of the motion. What they wanted at the onset was simply a judicial determination of probable cause for warrants of arrest issued. respondent emphasized that: . 2001. Your Honor.

Your Honor. ATTY. We were not asked to sign any order. Your Honor. That was the only prayer that we asked. Your Honor. I have a copy of that particular motion. In fact. and if I may read my prayer before the Court. In fact they ask the accused to come forward.And with notice to the offended party. JUSTICE GUERRERO: Now. FORTUN: There was none. an order be issued directing the . Your Honor. Pumapayag ka ba dito. FORTUN: That the arrest warrants only be withheld. you filed a motion. and the judge himself or herself explains the implications of a provisional dismissal. JUSTICE SALONGA: Was there an express conformity on the part of the accused? ATTY. Puwede bang pumirma ka? JUSTICE ROSARIO: You were present during the proceedings? ATTY. it is respectfully prayed that (1) a judicial determination of probable cause pursuant to Section 2. JUSTICE GUERRERO: Did you make any alternative prayer in your motion that if there is no probable cause what should the Court do? ATTY. it said: ―Wherefore. had done in respect of provisional dismissal or the matter of Mr. Lacson agreeing to the provisional dismissal of the case. My very limited practice in criminal courts. including other provisional dismissal. which would normally be required by the Court on pre-trial or on other matters. FORTUN: Yes. FORTUN: That is correct. FORTUN: That is correct. And there was nothing of that sort which the good Judge Agnir. the other accused then filed a motion for a judicial determination of probable cause? ATTY. Your Honor. Article III of the Constitution be conducted. Your Honor. JUSTICE ROSARIO: You represented the petitioner in this case? ATTY. FORTUN: Yes. or any statement. and for this purpose. had taught me that a judge must be very careful on this matter of provisional dismissal. who is most knowledgeable in criminal law.

Petitioner and the others promptly filed a motion for judicial determination of probable cause (Annex B). FORTUN: Yes. Your Honor. FORTUN: There is but it simply says other equitable reliefs are prayed for.prosecution to present the private complainants and their witnesses at the scheduled hearing for that purpose. because I knew fully well at that time that my client had already been arraigned. the case was assigned to Branch 81. and therefore I did not take any further step in addition to rocking the boat or clarifying the matter further because it probably could prejudice the interest of my client. contrary to respondent OSG’s claim. the SC in early 1999 rendered a decision declaring the Sandiganbayan without jurisdiction over the cases. neither were we asked to sign any assent to the provisional dismissal. He asked that warrants for his arrest not be issued. now a member of this Court. and the arraignment was valid as far as I was concerned. and (2) the warrants for the arrest of the accused be withheld. if issued. Your Honor. So. [21] . FORTUN: I did not. JUSTICE GUERRERO: Continue. JUSTICE GUERRERO: Don‘t you surmise Judge Agnir. the respondent declared in no uncertain terms that: Soon thereafter. I will not second say (sic) yes the Good Justice.[20] In his memorandum in lieu of the oral argument filed with the Court of Appeals. Your Honor. JUSTICE GUERRERO: If you did not agree to the provisional dismissal did you not file any motion for reconsideration of the order of Judge Agnir that the case should be dismissed? ATTY. precisely addressed your prayer for just and equitable relief to dismiss the case because what would be the net effect of a situation where there is no warrant of arrest being issued without dismissing the case? ATTY. or. JUSTICE GUERRERO: There is no general prayer for any further relief? ATTY. but what is plain is we did not agree to the provisional dismissal. the dismissal. recalled in the meantime until resolution of this incident. He did not move for the dismissal of the Informations. by Judge Agnir operated to benefit me. The records were remanded to the QC RTC: Upon raffle.

(b) attempts to make witnesses unavailable. Section 4 of the Rules of Court. Such notice will enable the offended party or the heirs of the victim the opportunity to seasonably and effectively comment on or object to the motion on valid grounds. Such notice may be served on the offended party or the heirs of the victim through the private prosecutor. 1999. It must be stressed that the respondent filed his motion only on March 17.The respondent‘s admissions made in the course of the proceedings in the Court of Appeals are binding and conclusive on him. 1999 and set . even if the respondent‘s motion for a determination of probable cause and examination of witnesses may be considered for the nonce as his motion for a provisional dismissal of Criminal Cases Nos. Q-99-81679 to Q-99-81689 would be to add to or make exceptions from the new rule which are not expressly or impliedly included therein. however. the requirement of the new rule will become illusory. otherwise. In the case at bar. The proof of such service must be shown during the hearing on the motion. The respondent is barred from repudiating his admissions absent evidence of palpable mistake in making such admissions. provide opportunity for the destruction or loss of the prosecution‘s physical and other evidence and prejudice the rights of the offended party to recover on the civil liability of the accused by his concealment or furtive disposition of his property or the consequent lifting of the writ of preliminary attachment against his property. or through the public prosecutor who in turn must relay the notice to the offended party or the heirs of the victim to enable them to confer with him before the hearing or appear in court during the hearing. or (c) the provisional dismissal of the case with the consequent release of the accused from detention would enable him to threaten and kill the offended party or the other prosecution witnesses or flee from Philippine jurisdiction. [23] The Court also agrees with the petitioners‘ contention that no notice of any motion for the provisional dismissal of Criminal Cases Nos. This the Court cannot and should not do. It must be borne in mind that in crimes involving private interests. [22] To apply the new rule in Criminal Cases Nos. Q-99-81679 to Q99-81689 or of the hearing thereon was served on the heirs of the victims at least three days before said hearing as mandated by Rule 15. the new rule requires that the offended party or parties or the heirs of the victims must be given adequate a priori notice of any motion for the provisional dismissal of the criminal case. Q-9981679 to Q-99-81689. the heirs of the victims were not notified thereof prior to the hearing on said motion on March 22. if there is one. including: (a) the collusion between the prosecution and the accused for the provisional dismissal of a criminal case thereby depriving the State of its right to due process.

The State can thus revive or refile Criminal Cases Nos. Although the public prosecutor was served with a copy of the motion. Leyte. There is as well no proof in the records that the public prosecutor notified the heirs of the victims of said motion or of the hearing thereof on March 22. II.. The said heirs were thus deprived of their right to be heard on the respondent‘s motion and to protect their interests either in the trial court or in the appellate court. and . dismissing the eleven cases. the public prosecutor and/or the private prosecutor to notify all the heirs of the victims of the respondent‘s motion and the hearing thereon and of the resolution of Judge Agnir. and Meleubren Sorronda. THE TIME-BAR IN SECTION 8. Nenita Alap-ap. There is no proof on record that all the heirs of the victims were served with copies of the resolution of Judge Agnir. 1999. the records do not show that notices thereof were separately given to the heirs of the victims or that subpoenae were issued to and received by them. Jr. Jr. the two-year bar in Section 8 of Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure should be applied prospectively and not retroactively against the State. dismissing said cases. There was no appearance for the heirs of Alex Neri. [24] [25] [26] [27] Since the conditions sine qua non for the application of the new rule were not present when Judge Agnir. Valdez entered his appearance as private prosecutor. including those who executed their affidavits of desistance who were residents of Dipolog City or Piñan. Myrna Abalora.it for hearing on March 22. 1999 or barely five days from the filing thereof. Margarita Redillas. In fine. Q-99-81679 to Q-99-81689 or file new Informations for multiple murder against the respondent. Imelda Montero. there never was any attempt on the part of the trial court. and Leonora Amora who (except for Rufino Siplon) executed their respective affidavits of desistance. Rufino Siplon. Carmelita Elcamel. The petitioners contend that even on the assumption that the respondent expressly consented to a provisional dismissal of Criminal Cases Nos. Pacifico Montero. Jr. dismissing the said cases. issued his resolution. To apply the time limit retroactively to the criminal cases against the respondent and his co-accused would violate the right of the People to due process. Jr. the State is not barred by the time limit set forth in the second paragraph of Section 8 of Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure. Jr. Q-9981679 to Q-99-81689 and all the heirs of the victims were notified of the respondent‘s motion before the hearing thereon and were served with copies of the resolution of Judge Agnir. Zamboanga del Norte or Palompon. Although Atty. he did so only for some but not all the close kins of the victims. namely. RULE 117 OF THE REVISED RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE SHOULD NOT BE APPLIED RETROACTIVELY.

[28] For his part. Petitioners thus pray to the Court to set aside its Resolution of May 28. the former should prevail. They submit that in case of conflict between the Revised Penal Code and the new rule. may be retroactively applied so long as they favor the accused. under the new rule. willing and able to provide their testimony but the prosecution failed to act on these cases until it became politically expedient in April 2001 for them to do so.unduly impair. he claims that the effects of a provisional dismissal under said rule do not modify or negate the operation of the prescriptive period under Article 90 of the Revised Penal Code. However. 2002. They posit that under Article 90 of the Revised Penal Code. the State only had one year and three months within which to revive the cases or refile the Informations. When the new rule took effect on December 1. Prescription under the Revised Penal Code simply . the State only had two years from notice of the public prosecutor of the order of dismissal of Criminal Cases Nos. the State is given the right under the Court‘s assailed Resolution to justify the filing of the Information in Criminal Cases Nos. Q-99-81679 to Q-99-81689 within which to revive the said cases. In any event. 01-101102 to 01-101112 beyond the timebar under the new rule. the State had twenty years within which to file the criminal complaints against the accused. reduce. [29] [30] [31] The respondent insists that Section 8 of Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure does not broaden the substantive right of double jeopardy to the prejudice of the State because the prohibition against the revival of the cases within the one-year or two-year periods provided therein is a legal concept distinct from the prohibition against the revival of a provisionally dismissed case within the periods stated in Section 8 of Rule 117. Moreover.‘ According to the respondent. 1999 and lapsed two years thereafter was more than reasonable opportunity for the State to fairly indict him. He asserts that the two-year period commenced to run on March 29. 2000. They also insist that the State had consistently relied on the prescriptive periods under Article 90 of the Revised Penal Code. and diminish the State‘s substantive right to prosecute the accused for multiple murder. penal laws. either procedural or substantive. It was not accorded afair warning that it would forever be barred beyond the two-year period by a retroactive application of the new rule. the respondent asserts that the new rule under Section 8 of Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure may be applied retroactively since there is no substantive right of the State that may be impaired by its application to the criminal cases in question since ‗[t]he State‘s witnesses were ready. The period for the State to charge respondent for multiple murder under Article 90 of the Revised Penal Code was considerably and arbitrarily reduced.

in effect. Its terms not only strike down the right of . albeit disputably. Statutes of limitations are construed as acts of grace.becomes irrelevant upon the application of Section 8. By the same token. The dismissal becomes ipso facto permanent. if a criminal case is dismissed on motion of the accused because the trial is not concluded within the period therefor. which filing tolls the running of the prescriptive period under Article 90. to have abandoned or waived its right to revive the case and prosecute the accused. a substantive law. the prescriptive periods under the Revised Penal Code are not thereby diminished. [35] The time-bar under the new rule does not reduce the periods under Article 90 of the Revised Penal Code. the State is presumed. enacts that when the specified period shall have arrived. Upon the lapse of the timeline under the new rule. But whether or not the prosecution of the accused is barred by the statute of limitations or by the lapse of the time-line under the new rule. The State may revive a criminal case beyond the one-year or two-year periods provided that there is a justifiable necessity for the delay. so that the lapse of the time-bar operates to extinguish the right of the State to prosecute the accused. the right of the state to prosecute shall be gone. [32] The Court agrees with the respondent that the new rule is not a statute of limitations. Such statutes are considered as equivalent to acts of amnesty founded on the liberal theory that prosecutions should not be allowed to ferment endlessly in the files of the government to explode only after witnesses and proofs necessary for the protection of the accused have by sheer lapse of time passed beyond availability. and the liability of the offender to be punished — to be deprived of his liberty—shall cease. He can no longer be charged anew for the same crime or another crime necessarily included therein. and a surrender by the sovereign of its right to prosecute or of its right to prosecute at its discretion. It is but a limitation of the right of the State to revive a criminal case against the accused after the Information had been filed but subsequently provisionally dismissed with the express consent of the accused. Rule 117 because a complaint or information has already been filed against the accused. He is spared from the anguish and anxiety as well as the expenses in any new indictments. [33] [34] On the other hand. The periods fixed under such statutes are jurisdictional and are essential elements of the offenses covered. the effect is basically the same. the time-bar under Section 8 of Rule 117 is akin to a special procedural limitation qualifying the right of the State to prosecute making the time-bar an essence of the given right or as an inherent part thereof. As the State Supreme Court of Illinois held: [36] [37] [38] [39] [40] … This.

and injurious consequences. The retroactive application of procedural laws is not violative of any right of a person who may feel that he is adversely affected. unreasonable. or oppressive results if such interpretation could be avoided. the reason for the enactment should be kept in mind and the statute should be construed with reference to the intended scope and purpose. It has been held that ―a person has no vested right in any particular remedy. there is ample basis for avoiding ―the injustice of hardship‖ by a holding of nonretroactivity. In Tan. In this respect. its language goes deeper than statutes barring civil remedies usually do. Time and again. Nor is the retroactive application of procedural statutes constitutionally objectionable. and that inferentially is held to abate the right which such remedy would enforce. This Court should not adopt an interpretation of a statute which produces absurd. Jr. and declares that this right and this liability are at an end. The reason is that as a general rule no vested right may attach to. Court of Appeals.action which the state had acquired by the offense. v. In a per curiam decision in Cipriano v. of any other than the existing rules of procedure. wrongful. indefensible. procedural laws. … [41] The Court agrees with the respondent that procedural laws may be applied retroactively. but this statute is aimed directly at the very right which the state has against the offender—the right to punish. and perfect the title which such remedy would invade. unjust. mischievous. In construing a statute. Procedural laws are retroactive in that sense and to that extent. as the only liability which the offender has incurred. whether civil or criminal. the United States Supreme Court ruled that where a decision of the court would produce substantial inequitable results if applied retroactively. which will avoid all objectionable. They expressly take away only the remedy by suit. and a litigant cannot insist on the application to the trial of his case. procedural law provides or regulates the steps by which one who has committed a crime is to be punished. A construction of which a statute is fairly susceptible is favored. As applied to criminal law. City of Houma. this Court held that: [42] Statutes regulating the procedure of the courts will be construed as applicable to actions pending and undetermined at the time of their passage. but also remove the flaw which the crime had created in the offender‘s title to liberty. [43] [44] [45] [46] [47] . It further ruled therein that a procedural law may not be applied retroactively if to do so would work injustice or would involve intricate problems of due process or impair the independence of the Court. The fact that procedural statutes may somehow affect the litigants‘ rights may not preclude their retroactive application to pending actions. this Court has decreed that statutes are to be construed in light of the purposes to be achieved and the evils sought to be remedied. nor arise from.

either with no time-bar for the revival thereof or with a specific or definite period for such revival by the public prosecutor. the Court balanced the societal interests and those of the accused for the orderly and speedy disposition of criminal cases with minimum prejudice to the State and the accused. the Court agrees with the petitioners that the time-bar of two years under the new rule should not be applied retroactively against the State. the particular conduct sought to be remedied and the effect thereon in the administration of justice and of criminal laws in particular. as now construed by the Court. The petitioners failed to show a manifest shortness or insufficiency of the time-bar. on first impression. (b) the extent of the reliance by law enforcement authorities on the old standards. In a per curiam decision in Stefano v. In the new rule in question. such as the history of the new rule. or doctrine of the Court designed to enhance and implement the constitutional rights of parties in criminal proceedings may be applied retroactively or prospectively depending upon several factors. There were times when such criminal cases were no longer revived or refiled due to causes beyond the control of the public prosecutor or because of the . However. or procedural rule. It took into account the substantial rights of both the State and of the accused to due process. and whether the retrospective application will further its operation. in fixing the time-bar. The Court believed that the time limit is a reasonable period for the State to revive provisionally dismissed cases with the consent of the accused and notice to the offended parties.Remedial legislation. The time-bar fixed by the Court must be respected unless it is shown that the period is manifestly short or insufficient that the rule becomes a denial of justice. unreasonable compared to the periods under Article 90 of the Revised Penal Code. it has fixed a time-bar of one year or two years for the revival of criminal cases provisionally dismissed with the express consent of the accused and with a priori notice to the offended party. and (c) the effect on the administration of justice of a retroactive application of the new standards. Woods. [50] The new rule was conceptualized by the Committee on the Revision of the Rules and approved by the Court en banc primarily to enhance the administration of the criminal justice system and the rights to due process of the State and the accused by eliminating the deleterious practice of trial courts of provisionally dismissing criminal cases on motion of either the prosecution or the accused or jointly. The time-bar may appear. the United States Supreme Court catalogued the factors in determining whether a new rule or doctrine enunciated by the High Court should be given retrospective or prospective effect: [48] [49] ―(a) the purpose to be served by the new standards. its purpose and effect.‖ In this case.

subject him to public obloquy and create anxiety in him and his family. especially if he greatly fears the consequences of his trial and conviction. Instead of giving the State two years to revive provisionally dismissed cases. a mere provisional dismissal of a criminal case does not terminate a criminal case. the more difficult it is to prove the crime. [55] [56] The time-bar under the new rule was fixed by the Court to excise the malaise that plagued the administration of the criminal justice system for the benefit of the State and the accused. In the long run. Physical evidence may have been lost. dismissing the criminal cases is inconsistent with the intendment of the new rule. Jr. 1999 when the public prosecutor received his copy of the resolution of Judge Agnir. The accused may become a fugitive from justice or commit another crime. The period is short of the two-year period fixed under . the chances of the accused for employment. The new rule took effect on December 1. 2001 within which to revive these criminal cases. He continues to suffer those penalties and disabilities incompatible with the presumption of innocence. curtail his association. [52] [53] The inordinate delay in the revival or refiling of criminal cases may impair or reduce the capacity of the State to prove its case with the disappearance or nonavailability of its witnesses. Judge Agnir. apathy or the lackadaisical attitude of public prosecutors to the prejudice of the State and the accused despite the mandate to public prosecutors and trial judges to expedite criminal proceedings. Q-99-81679 to Q99-81689 on March 29. 2000. The possibility that the case may be revived at any time may disrupt or reduce. not for the accused only. it may diminish his capacity to defend himself and thus eschew the fairness of the entire criminal justice system. Thus. the State would have only one year and three months or until March 31. Jr. Memories of witnesses may have grown dim or have faded. The Court agrees with the petitioners that to apply the time-bar retroactively so that the two-year period commenced to run on March 31. 1999. He is unable to lead a normal life because of community suspicion and his own anxiety. If the Court applied the new time-bar retroactively. The longer the lapse of time from the dismissal of the case to the revival thereof. if not derail. Passage of time makes proof of any fact more difficult.indolence. [54] On the other side of the fulcrum. dismissed Criminal Cases Nos. the State had considerably less than two years to do so. He may also lose his witnesses or their memories may fade with the passage of time. He is hesitant to disturb the hushed inaction by which dominant cases have been known to expire. [51] It is almost a universal experience that the accused welcomes delay as it usually operates in his favor.

therefore. so is the State. that those who did not avail themselves of it waived their rights …. This would be a rank denial of justice. per Mr. unreasonable. The period from April 1. The State must be given a period of one year or two years as the case may be from December 1. 2000 or until December 1. ―the concept of fairness must not be strained till it is narrowed to a filament.the new rule. As the United States Supreme Court said. Villon. As the United States Supreme Court said. oppressive. This is in consonance with the intendment of the new rule in fixing the time-bar and thus prevent injustice to the State and avoid absurd. in Griffin v.‖ In Dimatulac v. the State would have two years from December 1. this Court emphasized that ―the judge‘s action must not impair the substantial rights of the accused nor the right of the State and offended party to due process of law. We are to keep the balance true. if the time limit is applied prospectively. for justice to prevail. the accused is entitled to justice and fairness. the scales must balance. 2000 to revive the criminal case without requiring the State to make a valid justification for not reviving the case before the effective date of the new rule. Although in criminal cases. It cannot even be argued that the State waived its right to revive the criminal cases against respondent or that it was negligent for not reviving them within the two-year period under the new rule. To require the State to give a valid justification as a condition sine qua non to the revival of a case provisionally dismissed with the express consent of the accused before the effective date of the new rule is to assume that the State is obliged to comply with the time-bar under the new rule before it took effect. State of Massachussetts. The interests of society and the offended parties which have been . per Justice Felix Frankfurter. inSnyder v. On the other hand. 2002 within which to revive the cases. People: [57] We should not indulge in the fiction that the law now announced has always been the law and. justice is not to be dispensed for the accused alone. The two-year period fixed in the new rule is for the benefit of both the State and the accused. It should not be emasculated and reduced by an inordinate retroactive application of the time-bar therein provided merely to benefit the accused. 1999 to November 30. and wrongful results in the administration of justice. injurious. For to do so would cause an ―injustice of hardship‖ to the State and adversely affect the administration of justice in general and of criminal laws in particular. 1999 should be excluded in the computation of the two-year period because the rule prescribing it was not yet in effect at the time and the State could not be expected to comply with the time-bar. Justice Benjamin Cardozo. This Court further said: [58] [59] Indeed.

65034 is REVERSED. vs. INC. SO ORDERED. is DIRECTED to forthwith proceed with Criminal Cases Nos. RESOLUTION CALLEJO. J. to the society offended and the party wronged. 01-101102 to 01-101112 were filed with the Regional Trial Court on June 6. for. the petitioners‘ Motion for Reconsideration is GRANTED. August 11. and ST. petitioner. The Decision of the Court of Appeals. IN THE LIGHT OF ALL THE FOREGOING..: This is a petition for review on certiorari assailing the Decision[1]of the Court of Appeals which dismissed the petition to annul the Decision [2] of the Regional Trial Court .. In this case. SECOND DIVISION [G. Represented by JOVITA HERRERASEÑA. The Resolution of this Court. Branch 81. The Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. in CA-G. No pronouncements as to costs. No. dated August 24. SP No. 2002. dated May 28. on one hand. and an acquittal is not necessarily a triumph of justice. the eleven Informations in Criminal Cases Nos. is SET ASIDE. this Court finds the motion for reconsideration of petitioners meritorious. COURT OF APPEALS. In sum. The Petition of the Respondent with the Regional Trial Court in Civil Case No. SR. it could also mean injustice. and the State and offended party. 01-101102 to 01-101112 with deliberate dispatch. respondents.wronged must be equally considered.R. 143736. JOSEPH RESOURCES DEVELOPMENT. 01-100933 is DISMISSED for being moot and academic. a verdict of conviction is not necessarily a denial of justice. on the other. 2001 well within the two-year period.R. 2004] OFELIA HERRERA-FELIX. Justice then must be rendered even-handedly to both the accused. Verily. 2001.

1967.00 73. ordering the latter to pay the former the following: 1. Amount of Fish Purchased P 183.50. 1992 December 14.014.065. 2.400. Costs of suit.840. 1992 December 11. 1992 December 8. Joseph Resource Development.360. Metro Manila. Inc.00 108.100.50 from their aggregate purchases.379. thus: WHEREFORE. 1992 November 19. . respondent St.of Malabon. it is respectfully prayed that judgment be rendered in favor of plaintiff and against defendants. representing their unpaid obligation. Attorney‘s fees equivalent to 25% of the foregoing amount. 1993. 1992 December 13. 1992 November 20.132. 1992 December 3.00 It was also alleged that the Felix Spouses still had an outstanding obligation amounting to P1.00 183. .00 114. in Civil Case No.000. 1992 November 17.00 102. and 3. The respondent prayed that.00 159.615. P1. on the ground of lack of jurisdiction over the person of herein petitioner Ofelia Herrera-Felix.065. 1992. including unpaid tubs. Branch 73.50. . filed a complaint for sum of money against the Spouses Restituto and Ofelia Felix with a prayer for a writ of preliminary attachment.500. . It was alleged therein that. 1992 December 12. 1992 December 2. after due proceedings.692.50 275.380.181. after deducting their total payment of P438.516.00 56. 1992 to December 14. plus legal interest from the date of filing of the complaint. . judgment be rendered in its favor.132.00 70. during the period from November 16. as follows: Date of Purchase November 16.025. 1992 Total .00 32.190. 1992 December 9.300.00 79.50 ----------------P 1. the Felix Spouses purchased from the respondent tubs of assorted fish.00 78. 1992 December 5. The Antecedents On March 11.

the Felix Spouses failed to file their answer to the complaint. Ofelia Herrera-Felix was out of the country. the decretal portion of which reads: WHEREFORE. 1993.132.[5] On April 6. the Felix Spouses.00) – as/for reasonable Attorney‘s fees.565. 1993.50) plus legal rate of interest from the date of the filing of the complaint. Other just and equitable relief is also prayed for.Plaintiff likewise prays that a writ of preliminary attachment be issued ex parte against the properties of defendants as security for the satisfaction of any judgment that may be recovered. On March 26. jointly and severally.[8] Copies of the said decision were mailed to the Felix Spouses and their counsel. On August 11. The defendants to pay. SO ORDERED. Celestino C. The defendants to pay. judgment is hereby rendered ordering: 1. summons and complaint were served on them at their residence. by registered mail. The Sheriff levied and took custody of some of the personal properties of the Felix Spouses. The defendants to pay the costs of this suit. as per the information relayed to him by Ma.077. 1993. the trial court issued an Order granting the motion. 3. . 1993 to declare the said spouses in default. OnApril 5. Luisa Herrera. the plaintiffs the amount of ONE MILLION SEVENTY-SEVEN THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED SIXTY-FIVE PESOS AND FIFTY CENTAVOS(P1. A copy of the said resolution was sent to and received by the counsel of the Felix Spouses through registered mail. The copy of the decision addressed to the spouses was returned to the court after two notices for having been ―Unclaimed. 1967. through the sister of Ofelia Herrera-Felix. Ma. 1993. Celestino C.[6] which motion was granted by the court in its Resolution[7] dated May 13. jointly and severally. a copy of the writ of preliminary attachment. Juan. then counsel for the Felix Spouses received his copy of the decision. the court a quo rendered a decision in favor of the respondent.[4] According to the Sheriff‘s Return. the amount of TWENTY-FIVE THOUSAND PESOS (P25. The trial court granted the respondent‘s prayer for a writ of preliminary attachment on a bond of P1. The respondent then filed a Motion dated April 23. through Atty. 1993. However. Luisa Herrera. 1993.000.065.‖ However. Juan. filed a motion praying for an extension of time to file their answer to the complaint.50 which was posted on March 26. 2. Atty.[3] The case was docketed as Civil Case No.

the writ of execution issued by the said court. through her sister Ma. the following personal properties of the latter were levied upon and sold by the sheriff at public auction for P83. that the complaint and summons were handed over to her sister. The respondent filed a motion for a writ of execution.200. through her counsel. as evidenced by his Certificate of Death. did not constitute as a voluntary submission to the jurisdiction of the court. Juan. Ma. the defect was cured when the latter. 1988. 2000. The respondent. Luisa Herrera. was valid and effective. In her reply to the comment of the respondent. On June 7. likewise. Luisa Herrera. who was then temporarily outside the Philippines. The petitioner alleged. the appearance of Atty. petitioner Ofelia Herrera-Felix. Jovita Herrera-Seña. as her counsel. but they failed to oppose the motion. 1996. Thereafter. The court thereafter issued an order granting the motion and directing the issuance of a writ of execution. filed a petition with the Court of Appeals under Rule 47 of the Rules of Court for the nullification of the trial court‘s judgment by default. Juan. who was merely a visitor in her house and. The respondent also maintained that the petitioner and her counsel were served with copies of the decision of the court a quo. Section 7 of the Rules of Court. as such.[10] On September 13.00 to the respondent as the winning bidder: (1) unit Jeep-semi stainless (1) unit Jeep-stainless (1) Victor-Radio/TV/Cassette Recorder (1) Sony ―17‖ TV w/ remote control (1) Kawai Electric Organ (3) Hitachi Stand Fan (1) Standard Desk Fan (1) 6 pieces Sala Set. Atty. appeared in court and moved for an extension of time to file her responsive pleading. the Sheriff executed a Certificate of Sale of personal properties. the dispositive portion of which reads: . She also alleged that her husband Restituto Felix had died as early as April 23. 1995. A copy thereof was served on the said spouses by registered mail.[11] In its comment on the petition. represented by another sister. but that the petitioner failed to appeal the decision. was not a valid substituted service under Rule 14. Celestino C. the petitioner alleged that since she failed to file a responsive pleading to the complaint. and the sale of her properties at public auction. The counsel for the Felix Spouses received a copy of the said order.The decision of the trial court became final and executory after the Felix Spouses failed to appeal the same. the respondent alleged that the substituted service of the complaint and summons on the petitioner. the CA rendered a decision. inter alia. averred that even if such substituted service on the petitioner was defective. Celestino C.[9] On August 14.

are null and void. he thereby gives his assent to the jurisdiction of the court over his person. either by personal service or by substituted service or by extra-territorial service thereof or by his voluntary personal appearance before the court or through counsel. As such. and unless by such appearance he specifically objects to the jurisdiction of the court.[14] we ruled that: A voluntary appearance is a waiver of the necessity of a formal notice. While the formal method of entering an appearance in a cause pending in the courts is to deliver to the clerk a written direction ordering him to enter the appearance of the person who subscribes it. Court of Appeals. now comes to this Court via a petition for review on certiorari praying for the reversal of the decision of the Court of Appeals. When the .[13] By filing the said motion. Jovita Herrera-Seña.[12] The petitioner. and filed a motion for extension of time to file her answer to the complaint which the trial court granted. This formal method of appearance is not necessary. He may appear by presenting a motion. through counsel. She further alleges that even assuming the validity of the trial court‘s decision. Luisa Herrera. hence. for example. without explicitly objecting to the jurisdiction of the court over the person. this petition is hereby DISMISSED for lack of merit SO ORDERED. The court acquires jurisdiction over the person of the defendant by service of the complaint and summons on him. through counsel. She maintains that the latter was a mere visitor in her house. finding that the court a quo validly acquired jurisdiction over the action and absent any ground warranting the annulment of its judgment. the petitioner thereby submitted herself to the jurisdiction of the trial court. She even admitted in the said motion that she was served with a copy of the complaint as well as the summons. Such party is precluded from denying the same unless there is proof of palpable mistake or that no such admission was made. in Busuego vs. The contentions of the petitioner have no merit. an appearance may be made by simply filing a formal motion. such decision never became final and executory since she was not served a copy of the same. through her sister. The admissions made in a motion are judicial admissions which are binding on the party who made them.WHEREFORE. Indeed. not a resident therein. An appearance in whatever form. the petitioner appeared before the court. the sale of her personal properties at public auction. Ma. as well as the issuance of the Certificate of Sale. She alleges that the trial court did not acquire jurisdiction over her person through the service of the complaint and summons on her sister. She asserts that the actuations of both the trial court and the Sheriff deprived her of her right to due process. or plea or answer. the writ of execution issued by the trial court. is a submission to the jurisdiction of the court over the person. premises considered. In this case. the decision of the trial court is null and void. He may appear without such formal appearance and thus submit himself to the jurisdiction of the court.

. Costs against the petitioner. Austria-Martinez. is binding on her. Tinga. 2000 is hereby AFFIRMED.R. Chairperson. WHEREFORE. There can be no denial of due process where a party had the opportunity to participate in the proceedings but failed to do so through his own fault. 155508 Present: PUNO.[15] Equally barren of factual basis is the claim of the petitioner that she was not served with a copy of the decision of the trial court. SECOND DIVISION HEIRS OF PEDRO CLEMEÑA Y ZURBANO. who received the same. Section 2 of the Rules of Court. concur. through counsel. No. another copy of the decision was served on her through her counsel. it must be for the sole and separate purpose of objecting to the jurisdiction of the court. The records show that aside from the copy of the decision sent to her by the Branch Clerk of Court by registered mail. conformably to Rule 13. J. SANDOVAL-GUTIERREZ. Petitioners. If his motion is for any other purpose than to object to the jurisdiction of the court over his person.[16] We reject the petitioner‘s plaint of having been deprived of her right to due process. JJ. Atty. What the law proscribes.. Celestino C. therefore.appearance is by motion objecting to the jurisdiction of the court over his person. Juan. The essence of due process is a reasonable opportunity to be heard and submit evidence in support of one‘s defense. The service of the decision on the petitioner.. G. the petition is DENIED DUE COURSE. and Chico-Nazario. is the lack of opportunity to be heard.[17] A party who opts not to avail of the opportunity to answer cannot complain of procedural due process. (Chairman). SO ORDERED. Puno. he thereby submits himself to the jurisdiction of the court. The assailed decision of the Court of Appeals dated June 7.

.. AZCUNA and GARCIA.... HEIRS OF IRENE B...... Municipality of Tiwi.. Bien..... JJ.... BIEN.. J...... Albay......... should be made to pay respondents. 2006 x . Respondents...... Promulgated: September 11. the heirs of Pedro Clemeña y Zurbano...: The only question presented in this petition for review on certiorari[1] is whether petitioners. .... the heirs of Irene B. compensatory damages for depriving them of the owner’s share of the harvest from a tract of riceland in Bolo...-x DECISION CORONA......versus - CORONA..

y al Oeste – Marcial Copino. Declared as Tax No. 5299 and assessed at P310.644 metros cuadrados poco mas o menos. The Irene Bien’s complaint read: pertinent averments in [T]he plaintiff is x x x the absolute owner of a parcel of land situated in the province of Albay described and limited as follows: ―Una parcela de terreno arrozal en el sitio de Bolo. and the said Victoriano Napa in turn acquired the same by purchase from FranciscoBarrameda who also bought the said land from the administrator of the estate of Pedro Clemeña y Conde which sale had been duly authorized and approved by this Honorable Court in Civil Case No. lindante al Norte . al Este – Pedro Clemeña y Conde.00” [T]he plaintiff acquired the above parcel of land by purchase from Victoriano Napa as per deed of sale in her favor x x x. con una extension superficial de 20.644 square meters. Municipio de Tiwi. was one of three lots[2] involved in two consolidated cases[3] for recovery of possession and ownership filed in the 1940s by respondents’ predecessor Irene Bien (through her attorney-in-fact Gregorio Clemeña) against petitioners’ predecessor Pedro Clemeña y Zurbano. 3410-In re The Estate of Pedro Clemeña y Conde x x x. described in Tax Declaration No.Eulalio Copino y Esteban Bobis. 5299 (TD 5299) as having a surface area of more or less 20.This piece of land. al Sur Canal de Ragadio y Valentina Conde. [T]he defendant ever since he was removed as administrator of the Estate of Pedro Clemeña y Conde in the year 1939 deliberately continued to occupy and usurp the possession and use of the above described parcel of land x x x. and has ever since . Pedro Clemeña y Valentina Conde. Provincia de Albay.

[10] Subsequently. it ruled that the contending parties had failed to prove their respective claims of ownership and therefore the land in question still belonged to its original owner. however. the RTC reconsidered its findings with respect to ownership. the RTC rendered a decision[9] declaring petitioners to be the absolute owners of the land described in TD 5299 and directing respondents to respect petitioners’ possession thereof. Pedro Clemeña y Zurbano alleged that the land was his and that it was in his exclusive possession. passed away in 1953 and was substituted by respondents. On August 10. the plaintiff will suffer damages and in fact has suffered damages beginning this October 1943 harvest at the rate of 25 cavans ofpalay per harvest or 50 cavans yearly x x x[4] In his answer. Eventually. petitioners succeeded the defendant Pedro Clemeña y Zurbano who died in 1955. [B]y reason of this unlawful occupation and usurpation by the defendant.[5] His claim of ownership was similarly based on a sale by the estate of the late Pedro Clemeña y Conde to his predecessor-in-interest. the estate of the late Pedro Clemeña y Conde. the cases were re-raffled to Branch 2[8] of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Legaspi City in November of 1994.[11] the RTC modified the dispositive portion of its decision to read: .refused to relinquish the possession of the same to the lawful owner thereof notwithstanding the fact that he has no right or any color of title over the said land.[6] Not long after that. 1995. Irene Bien.[7] The trial lasted decades. 1995. Neither one of the original parties lived to see the end of the trial. Thus. in an order dated November 13. This time. The plaintiff.

no award concerning is awarded (sic). Considering that the parcel of land covered by [TD] No. 5681. plaintiffs [respondents] are declared the owners thereof. 74.000 in damages as compensation for their . no longer disputes (sic) the ownership of the plaintiffs [respondents] as regards the parcel covered by [TD] No. the predecessor-in-interest of the defendants [petitioners].] in their opposition to the motion for reconsideration. No damages having been proved. CV No. Considering that the parcel covered by [TD] No. SO ORDERED. respondents appealed to the Court of Appeals (CA). 50912. is not included among those parcels sold by the estate of the late Pedro Clemeña yConde to Francisco Barameda. the defendants [petitioners] are declared the owners thereof and therefore entitled to its possession. as stated in the decision. and further considering that said deed of sale is earlier than the sale executed in favor of Mr. since it was not duly established that the defendants [petitioners] entered and occupied a portion of said property. 3. It proceeded to award respondents P118.[12] From that order. 115. Considering that the defendants [petitioners. 5299. 2.[13] the CA affirmed the RTC’s resolution of the issues relating to the other two parcels of land but reversed the ruling on the ownership of the land covered by TD 5299. It was docketed as CA-G.R. no damage is just the same awarded. 5685 is included in the sale executed by Special Administrator Salustiano Zubeldia to Jesus Salazar. Francisco Barameda. In a decision dated April 4. the other parcel subject matter of Civil Case No. the same still forms part of the estate of the late Pedro Clemeña y Conde. 2002. Neither the plaintiffs [respondents] nor the defendants [petitioners] own the same. As regards the claim for damages by the plaintiffs [respondents].1. the predecessor of the original plaintiff Irene Bien and neither was it included in the sale executed by Special Administrator Salustiano Zubeldia in favor of Jesus Salazar. subject matter of Civil Case No.

The remaining issue to be determined is the amount of damages sustained by appellants [respondents] from appellees’ *petitioners’+ retention of possession thereof. A Q A How big is this parcel of land? More or less. to wit: “Q This second parcel of land described in the SECOND cause of action which is Tax No. 5299. Q A What is the average owner’s share of the harvest? About fifty cavans of palay. 5299. The findings on which this award was based were stated in the appellate court’s decision: [T]he recovered exhibits of the appellants [respondents] clearly indicate that ownership thereof belongs to [them] by virtue of the following documents of sale x x x. Hence. xxx xxx xxx .having been deprived of possession and the owner’s share in the harvest. two (2) hectares. Gregorio Clemeña testified on the damages incurred from the appellees’ occupation of the property in the form of deprivation of the owner’s share of the harvest. what kind of land is this? Riceland. the appellants [respondents] are the owners of the property covered by Tax Declaration No.

A Q A How about after 1950 to 1960? The same. 5299? The late Pedro Clemeña y Zurbano when he was still alive and then his children after his death. WHEREFORE.00) Pesos per cavan. dated November 13. Q A How about from 1960 to 1970? At present.000 computed in the following manner: P1. starting from the year 1945 up to 1950? About Fifteen (P15.00 (50 cavans multiplied by two [the number of harvests in a year] multiplied byP25. known as Tax No.00 (50 cavans multiplied by two [the number of harvests in a year] multiplied by P15. Branch II.700.” A He likewise testified on the changes in the price of a cavan of palay over the years. 1995. in the exercise of discretion. it is Twenty Five (P25.00) multiplied by 27 years (1943 to 1970) and P2.00) Pesos a sack. the appeal is partly granted in that the Order. in two consolidated cases.Q From the time you filed this case in the year 1943. of the Regional Trial Court of Legazpi City. . thus: “Q What was the current average price of palay after liberation.00) multiplied by 31 years (1971-2001). who had been receiving the owner’s share from this property.” xxx xxx xxx We believe.500. that the [respondents] are entitled to an award of damages in the amount of P118.

74 and 155. proceeding as it did from one of the plaintiffs. 2002. with legal interest thereon from the date of finality of this decision until actual payment thereof.[15] Hence.” [14] Petitioners’ motion for reconsideration was denied in a resolution dated October 1. however. was selfserving and therefore could not have been a proper basis for such an award. Appellants *respondents+ are hereby DECLARED entitled to the ownership of the property covered by Tax Declaration No. The petition is devoid of merit. that they cannot be held liable to respondents for the harvest because (1) they never took possession of the property declared in TD 5299 and (2) the evidence the CA relied on to determine the amount of damages. .docketed as Civil Case Nos. They insist. both of them simple and rather obvious. Petitioners’ contention that the land was never in their possession should be dismissed outright for two reasons. The appellees [petitioners] and all persons claiming under them are hereby ORDERED to vacate this tract of land immediately and to turn over the possession of such land together with all improvements thereon to appellants. Petitioners no longer dispute respondents’ ownership of the property covered by TD 5299. is affirmed with the modification that paragraph 1 is deleted and replaced with the following: “1. by way of actual and compensatory damages.000. Appellees [petitioners] are further directed to pay to appellants [respondents] the amount of one hundred and eighteen thousand pesos (P118. 5299.00). this petition.

and all proof submitted by him contrary thereto or inconsistent therewith should simply be ignored by the court. petitioners’ predecessor Pedro Clemeña y Zurbano alleged in his answer that the land declared in TD 5299 was in his exclusive possession.[19] The rule on judicial admissions found its way into black-letter law only in 1964 but its content is supplied by case law much older and in many instances more explicit than the present codal expression. Justice Street in the 1918 decision Ramirez v.[18] A judicial admission conclusively binds the party making it. Orientalist Co.[16] That statement. may relieve a party from the consequences of his admission. He cannot thereafter contradict it. verbal or written. in the exercise of its discretion and because of strong reasons to support its stand.:[22] [20] An admission made in a pleading can not be controverted by the party making such admission. does not require proof. The exception is found only in those rare instances when the trial court. Pitargue. insofar as it confirmed the allegation in the complaint that petitioners’ predecessor had retained possession of the land in question. The rule was more forcibly stated by Mr. In the early case of Irlanda v. The admission may be contradicted only by showing that it was made through palpable mistake or that no such admission was made. made by a party in the course of proceedings in the same case. Rule 129 of the Rules of Court: An admission.[21] this Court laid down the doctrine that acts or facts admitted do not require proof and cannot be contradicted unless it can be shown that the admission was made through palpable mistake.First.[23] .[17] took on the character of a judicial admission contemplated in Section 4. whether objection is interposed by the opposite party or not.

[27] The Court is well aware. of course. (2) the decision sought to be reviewed is against the law and in complete disregard of the rules on evidence.[28] But this case does not fall within any of these. petitioners have shown no contradiction between the findings of the CA and the RTC on the matter.[24] the Court declared that: the allegations. the issue of whether petitioners ever had possession of the land is undeniably a question of fact. Second. they were bound by the admission of Pedro Clemeña y Zurbano. petitioners invoke a number of these exceptions. Amparo. And for obvious reasons. and (4) the CA failed to notice relevant facts and evidence which if properly considered would justify a different conclusion. that this rule has been watered down by a slew of exceptions. For one.[25] Petitioners’ newly-contrived assertion that they were never in possession of the land cannot hold up against these pronouncements. our preceding . namely: (1) the factual findings of the trial court and the CA are contradictory. As substituting defendants.[26] Without any showing that the admission was made through palpable mistake or that no such admission was made. Questions of this nature cannot be raised in a petition for review on certiorari as the remedy is confined to pure questions of law. statements. petitioners cannot now contradict it. Hoping to convince the Court to reverse the CA’s findings.And in Cunanan v. their predecessor in the litigation. or admissions contained in a pleading are conclusive as against the pleader. or inconsistent with. his pleadings. A party cannot subsequently take a position contrary to. (3) there was grave abuse of discretion in the appreciation of facts.

is the sense in which petitioners are using it now. At any rate. it seems.[30] Evidence of this sort is excluded on the same ground as any hearsay evidence. is a concept much misunderstood. Petitioners’ next proposition. “Self-serving evidence” is not to be taken literally to mean any evidence that serves its proponent’s interest. that his testimony was inaccurate or untrue. not susceptible to an objection on the ground that it is self-serving. i.[31] In contrast. for all their protestations against the use of Gregorio Clemeña’s testimony. is just as unworthy of this Court’s favorable consideration. and it does not include testimony that he gives as a witness in court. . This is a grave error. a party’s testimony in court is sworn and subject to cross-examination by the other party.disquisition on the conclusiveness of Pedro Clemeña y Zurbano’s admission of the fact of possession makes the rest of the grounds invoked by petitioners undeserving of even passing consideration. lack of opportunity for cross-examination by the adverse party and on the consideration that its admission would open the door to fraud and fabrication.e. the term is employed as a weapon to devalue and discredit a party’s testimony favorable to his cause.” perhaps owing to its descriptive formulation.[29] The term.[32] and therefore. if used with any legal sense. Not infrequently. “Self-serving evidence. much less tried to show. petitioners’ objection is founded solely on the mere fact that he. petitioners never once alleged. refers only to acts or declarations made by a party in his own interest at some place and time out of court. That. that is.. that Gregorio Clemeña’s testimony was self-serving and therefore an improper basis for the damages awarded to respondents. As already observed. being a plaintiff.

was a witness interested in the outcome of the case. the Court cannot subscribe to the view. the petition is hereby DENIED. Workmen’s Compensation Commission[34] that interest alone is not a ground for disregarding a party’s testimony. 50912 areAFFIRMED. . The award of damages must stand. we hold that the appellate court committed no reversible error in relying on Gregorio Clemeña’s testimony. Our justice system will not survive such a rule for obdurate cynicism on the part of a court is just as odious to the administration of justice as utter gullibility.[33] To insist otherwise would be the height of naiveté. WHEREFORE. 2002 decision and October 1.[35] Elsewhere it has been said that the interest of a witness does not ipso facto deprive his testimony of probative force or require it to be disregarded. SO ORDERED. Petitioners’ arguments to the contrary must be rejected. Moreover. it is true that a party’s interest may to some extent affect his credibility as a witness. In view of the foregoing. that a party’s testimony favorable to himself must be disregarded on account solely of his interest in the case.R. implicit in petitioners’ argument. and the trier of facts is entitled to accept as much of the witness’ testimony as he finds credible and to reject the rest.[36] To these dicta we give our complete assent. this Court held in National Development Company v. Now. CV No. 2002 resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. Nonetheless. The April 4.

...... CJ. SR..... and ...-x DECISION .. CALLEJO..... Promulgated: December 18. No. (Working Chairman) AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ.... R.. G........FIRST DIVISION LUCIANO TAN.. JJ.......versus - CHICO-NAZARIO.. 2006 RODIL ENTERPRISES....* YNARESSANTIAGO...... 168071 Present: PANGANIBAN... Petitioner. x.. Respondent..

R. Court of . The validity of the 18 May 1992 and the 25 May 1992 contracts was placed in question in several actions involving Rodil Enterprises. RodilEnterprises and the Republic.CHICO-NAZARIO. Manila. Branch 13 in Civil Case No. and dismissed the Complaint filed by respondent RodilEnterprises against petitioner Luciano Tan for utter lack of merit. This Court upheld the validity of the aforesaid contracts in a Decision rendered on 29 November 2001. The IdesO’Racca Building. The RTC reversed the 6 October 2000 Decision[4] of the Metropolitan Trial Court (MeTC) of Manila. is owned by the Republic of the Philippines. thus. v. Branch 13. J. This case has its origin from the Complaint[5] for Unlawful Detainer filed on 13 March 2000 by Rodil Enterprises against Luciano Tan with the MeTC of Manila. 166584. the Ides O’Racca Building since 1959. in the consolidated cases of RodilEnterprises.: The instant Petition for Review on Certiorari assails the Decision[1] dated 21 October 2002 and the Resolution[2] dated 12 May 2005 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. 67201. de Santos and Folgueras Streets in Binondo.. On 18 May 1992. docketed as Civil Case No. located at the corner of M. through the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). The factual antecedents to the filing of the Complaint show that Rodil Enterprises is a lessee of the subject premises. which set aside the 18 June 2001 Decision[3] of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Manila. entered into a Renewal of a Contract of Lease over the Ides O’RaccaBuilding. A subsequent Supplementary Contract dated 25 May 1992 was similarly entered into. Inc. SP No. extending the lease agreement until 1 September 1997. 01-99797. 166584. Branch 26 in Civil Case No. and other tenants. Inc. the Ides O’Racca Building Tenants Association.

a Resolution was rendered in the same case denying with finality the amended Motion for Reconsideration. Likewise. 129609) and Rodil Enterprises. Rodil Enterprises filed a Petition for Review on Certiorari with the Court of Appeals on the Order of Execution. 34586 which was dismissed by the appellate court for non-compliance with procedural requirements.R. Teresita Bondoc-Esto.rendered a Decision dated 8 February 1994. No. No. the Court of Appeals ordered the Office of the President to abide by the 29 November 2001 Decision of the Supreme Court in the consolidated cases of G. On 25 January 2006. SP No 79157.R. 4968 entitled.R. 169892.R. No. Spouses Saturnino B. Rodil Enterprises Company. in G. dated 18 May 1992 and the 25 May 1992. It appears that Rodil Enterprises appealed the 8 February 1994 Decision to the Court of Appeals. the Court. 119711 which was also dismissed. the Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. Inc. to the Supreme Court. respectively. the Office of the President issued an Order of Execution of its 8 February 1994 Decision in OP Case No. Inc. docketed as G. and v. Inc. of no force and effect. 4968. [6] IdesO’Racca Building Tenants Association. No. (G. upholding the validity of the Renewal of Contract of Lease and the Supplemental Contract. SP No. Thereafter.R.R. dated 18 May 1992 and 25 May 1992. Carmen Bondoc. 129609 and G. docketed as CA-G. The Court of Appeals rendered a Decision therein dated 28 March 2005 which annulled the Order of Execution. Subsequently. docketed as CA-G.R. and docketed as G. 4968. Inc. No. Alvarez and Epifania Binay Alvarez [7] v. issued a Resolution denying the Petition. No. and enjoined the Office of the President from enforcing its 8 February 1994 Decision in OP Case No. the Office of the President in OP Case No.Appeals. 169892. The dismissal was appealed by Rodil Enterprises to the Supreme Court. declaring the Renewal of Contract of Lease and the Supplementary Contract. respectively. On 20 March 2006. 135537). Finally. Divisoria Footwear Chua Huay Soon (G.R. No. SP No.R.R. Prior thereto. 79157 was brought on certiorari by the Ides O’Racca Building Tenants Association. 135537. .

However. representing the reasonable use and occupancy of the said premises. prayed for the dismissal of the Complaint. In his Answer. he has the right to lease the said premises pending the disposition and sale of the building.00 as monthly rentals. thus. Luciano Tan insists that he is a legitimate tenant of the government who owns the Ides O’Racca Building and not of Rodil Enterprises.00 until Luciano Tan vacatesBotica Divisoria. a subsequent Contract of Lease was drawn between Rodil Enterprises and the Republic.67. Rodil Enterprises subleased various units of the property to members of the Ides O’Racca Building Tenants Association. A space thereof. Rodil Enterprises prayed that Luciano Tan and those claiming rights under him be ordered to vacate the leased premises.206.750. He. the former alleged that Luciano Tan bound himself to pay under a Contract of Sublease. of which LucianoTan is a member. on 18 October 1999. and despite repeated oral and written demands. amounting toP385. Luciano Tan unjustifiably and unreasonably refused to pay the rentals from September 1997 up to the time of the filing of the Complaint. In Rodil Enterprises’ Complaint for Unlawful Detainer filed against Luciano Tan.00 was similarly sought. during the pendency of the preceding cases. Accordingly. A payment of rentals in arrears. As such. 4968. subsequent monthly rentals in the amount of P13. refused to vacate the premises and to pay the rents due. had declared the Renewal of Contract of Lease dated 18 May 1992 and the Supplemental Contract dated 25 May 1992 between Rodil Enterprises and the Republic to be without force and effect. subject to adjustment upon the approval of a new appraisal covering the Ides O’Racca Building. the Office of the President in OP Case No. the amount of P13. Inc. Luciano Tan.750.Meanwhile. as well as. including attorney’s fees and litigation costs. the same to be effective retroactively from 1 September 1997 to 21 August 2012 at a monthly rental of P65. known as Botica Divisoria was subleased to herein petitioner. Inc. He based his claim on the fact that on 8 February 1994. and for the return of .000. the DENR was directed to award the lease contract in favor of the Ides O’Racca Building Tenants Association.

00. Luciano Tan filed a Motion to Allow Defendant to Deposit Rentals. that the rentals in arrears from September 1997 amounted to P467. and the subsequent monthly rentals as they fall due. declared. 2000.750. inter alia. the parties and counsel agreed in principle in open court to the following terms to put an end to this civil case for ejectment between them: 1. the MeTC issued an Order.[8] On 14 August 2000. recognizing an agreement entered into in open court by Luciano Tan and Rodil Enterprises.[10] Rule 70 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure.00. The Order.) that [Luciano Tan] will pay P440. 1997 up to the present. made payable to the City Treasurer of Manila.000. However. and 2. which is the outstanding obligation of [Luciano Tan] as of June.) [Luciano Tan] will pay the monthly rentals computed at P13. on 15 August 2000. and in line with his good faith in dealing with Rodil Enterprises.00 representing rentals from September.00 on or before the 5th day of each month after June 30. 2000. On 27 June 2000. . or during such time when he was still paying rentals to the latter.whatever amount Rodil Enterprises had collected from 1987 to 1997. He prayed that he be allowed to deposit the Manager’s Check for the amount of P467.500. he would like to deposit the aforesaid amount.500. the MeTC denied the Motion on the rationalization that Luciano Tan’s prayer to deposit the specified sum with the City Treasurer of Manila contravenes Section 19. thus: On second call. 2000.[9] averring therein that he had agreed to pay all the rentals due on the subject premises and to pay the subsequent monthly rentals as they fall due. on or before June 30.

650.” On the other hand. viz: 1.00. [Luciano Tan+’s counsel formulated the issues of the case in the following manner[.] to wit: 1) Whether or not under the circumstances[. the MeTC rendered a Decision in favor of Rodil Enterprises. on or before June 30.00 representing rentals from September 1997 up to the present. 2000. revolved on: “Whether *Rodil Enterprises] is legally entitled to collect from [Luciano Tan] the amount of rentals and interest thereon as prayed for in the complaint and to ask for the ejectment of the defendant from the leased premises.[11] On 6 October 2000. and 2) [[Luciano Tan] will pay the monthly rentals computed at P13. . 2000. 2) Whether or not under the circumstances[. 2000. and in fact admitted in judicio.750.) That [Luciano Tan] will pay P440. which is the outstanding obligation of the defendant as of June. to wit: [T]he issue insofar as [Rodil Enterprises]. The court said that Luciano Tan did not contest the sublease on a monthly basis. the issues for the resolution of the MeTC were synthesized by the court in its Order. on or before the 5th day of each month after June 30.Subsequently.][Luciano Tan] could be ejected from the premises in question.00.] [Rodil Enterprises] should be made to return the amounts collected from [Luciano Tan] from 1987 to 1997 amounting to P988. dated 25 July 2000.000.

like the existence of a debt which can serve as proof of the loan. Complaint. Ycasiano. notwithstanding the evidentiary norm in civil cases that an offer of compromise is not an admission of any liability. and was thus. 89 Phil. and a secondary matrix for.” Position Paper for the Defendant. it will place the cart ahead of the horse. rendered him a deforciant (1 Regalado. explained further: Prescinding from the foregoing discourse. 1997. admissible. 2000)[12] According to the MeTC. states. 44). especially so when non-payment of rentals is an accepted prelude to. and is not admissible in evidence against the offeror. coupled with a proposal to liquidate. Remedial Law Compendium. 6th Revised Edition. thus. a tenant’s eviction (Article 1673 (2). when juxtaposed with another pending controversy between the parties before the Supreme Court (Annex “1. as appreciated by the MeTC. citing Dikit vs. the cognition of which were recognized (paragraphs VII and IX.” Answer to Counterclaim).[15] The MeTC. page 770. Estoppel. precludes him from disavowing the fact of lease implied from the tender of payment for the rentals in arrears. were akin to an admission of a fact. paragraph 2. The decretal portion of the Decision. the court cannot overlook the frank representations by Luciano Tan’s counsel of the former’ s liability in the form of rentals. From a different plane. Annex “B. Rule 70 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. Answer). in a manner of speaking.(Order dated June 27. viz: .[14] The court pronounced that Luciano Tan had explicitly acknowledged his liability for the periodic consideration for the use of the subleased property.[13] The foregoing gestures. it ineluctably follows that [Luciano Tan+’s indifference to heed the two demand letters. and was thus vulnerable to the special civil action under Section 1. [Luciano Tan+’s quest at this juncture for recovery of the rentals he paid to the plaintiff from 1987 to 1997 will not merit the desired result since. New Civil Code).

and 5.00) as reasonable attorney’s fees. It found that the MeTC erred in holding that the offer to compromise by Luciano Tan’s counsel was akin to an admission of fact. As reasoned by the RTC: . in view of the foregoing premises. 3. and all persons claiming rights under him.[19] Rule 130 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure. starting July. until possession is delivered to the plaintiff’s representative. the same being contrary to Section 27. 2000. defendant’s counterclaim is hereby DISMISSED. Meanwhile. Luciano Tan appealed the Decision to the RTC. Defendant Luciano Tan. and to peacefully deliver possession to the plaintiff’s representative.750.WHEREFORE. judgment is hereby rendered in favor of [Rodil Enterprises]. IT IS SO ORDERED. Defendant [Luciano Tan] to pay the sum of FOUR HUNDRED FORTY THOUSAND PESOS (P440. 4. 1997 up to June 30. Defendant [Luciano Tan] to pay the sum of THIRTEEN THOUSAND SEVEN HUNDRED FIFTY PESOS (P13.000. Rodil Enterprises filed a Motion for Issuance of Writ of Execution. the RTC rendered a Decision reversing the judgment appealed from and dismissing the Complaint.[16] Aggrieved thereby. 2000.000. For want of merit. Defendant [Luciano Tan] to pay the sum of FIVE THOUSAND PESOS (P5. On 18 June 2001.00) as recognized unpaid rentals from September. ordering: 1. and every month thereafter. 2. Defendant [Luciano Tan] to pay the cost of suit.[17] which was subsequently denied by the MeTC in the Order[18] of 15 December 2000. to vacate the subject realty.00) as agreed rental per month.

Rodil Enterprises filed a Petition for Review with the appellate court.During the pre-trial conference held in the lower court. 166584 for utter lack of merit. disposed. which. and affirmed and reinstated the 6 October 2000 Decision of the MeTC.[22] The period of the lease. should not be considered admissible evidence against him. It. held that the prayer for recovery of rentals from 1987 to 1997 is premature. there is. between Rodil Enterprises and the Republic of the Philippines. the RTC ruled that the controversy is still pending before the Supreme Court. According to the appellate court. which was normally inspired by the desire to “buy peace”. dated 18 May 1992 and 25 May 1992. The RTC. the judgment appealed from is hereby REVERSED. and a new judgment is hereby entered DISMISSING the complaint in Civil Case No. proposals and counterproposals emanated from the parties’ counsels. under the 18 October 1999 contract is from 1 September 1997 to 31 August 2012. The Court of Appeals gave credence to the fact that the existence . as follows: IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING. thus. to put an end to the troubles of litigation. a valid and subsisting Contract of Lease executed on 18 October 1999.[20] Proceeding to the issue of the right of Rodil Enterprises to collect rentals and eject Luciano Tan based on the contracts. the same for a period of fifteen (15) years. nay. in a Decision dated 21 October 2002 set aside the judgment of the RTC. and to promote settlement of disputes as a matter of public policy.[21] Subsequently. The act of defendant/appellant’s (sic) in the midst of pre-trial is not an admission of any liability and therefore.

(G. 1997 up to the present. What Luciano Tan. Court of Appeals. and that he had reneged in the payment of rentals since 1 September 1997. Teresita Bondoc-Esto. 129609) and Rodil Enterprises. Divisoria Footwear and Chua Huay Soon (G. thus: The evidence on record indubitably shows that respondent [Luciano Tan] is a sublessee of petitioner [Rodil Enterprises] who failed to pay rentals from 01 September 1997 and even until the case was filed before the [M]etropolitan [T]rial [C]ourt. which is the outstanding obligation of the defendant as of June. 2000. Carmen Bondoc.750. the Court of Appeals held that the former made an implied admission of the existence of a contract of sublease between him and Rodil Enterprises on the subject premises. No. impugned was the validity of the contracts dated 18 and 25 May 1992. 2000. on or before June 30. when respondent [Luciano Tan+ “agreed in principle in open court” to the following terms: 1) that the defendant [Luciano Tan] will pay P440. The appellate court elucidated.R. 135537). v. which was upheld by this Court in the consolidated cases of Rodil Enterprises. v. Inc.00 representing rentals from September. Inc.00 on or before the 5th day of each month after June 30. [23] Ides O’Racca Building Tenants Association. . Inc. Moreover.000. it deemed Luciano Tan’s Motion to Allow Defendant to Deposit Rentals as another admission in favor of RodilEnterprises. No. 2000. instead. Ruling on the more important question of whether Luciano Tan made a judicial admission anent his liability as a sublessee of Rodil Enterprises.of the aforesaid contract was not denied nor controverted by Luciano Tan. and 2) defendant [Luciano Tan] will pay the monthly rentals computed at P13.R.

citing Section 4. By such acts. petitioner comes before us. Oscar M. Branch 26 is hereby SET ASIDE. Respondent [Luciano Tan+’s admission was further bolstered by the fact that he filed a “Motion to Allow Defendant to Deposit Rentals” (Rollo. thus: WHEREFORE. Annex “9” of petition). The Decision dated 06 October 2000 of the Metropolitan Trial Court of Manila. p.[25] The appellate court denied Luciano Tan’s Motion for Reconsideration thereon.[26] dated 12 May 2005. respondent [Luciano Tan] in effect made an implied judicial admission that there was a subsisting contract of sublease between him and petitioner. Branch 13 is AFFIRMED and REINSTATED. to wit: I THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED A GRAVE REVERSIBLE ERROR WHEN IT ISSUED ITS RESOLUTION DENYING PETITIONER’S MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION OF . by a party accepting for the purposes of the suit the truth of some alleged fact. the petition for review is GIVEN DUE COURSE. Rule 129 of the Revised Rules on Evidence and Evidence by Salonga).at the hearing on 27 June 2000 though no settlement was eventually reached between the parties. states. and that he was remiss in the payment of rentals from 01 September 1997 up to that day (Rollo. verbal or written. respondent [Luciano Tan] accepted the truth of petitioner [Rodil Enterprises’+ allegation of the existence of a contract of sublease between them and of his non-payment of the rentals from 01 September 1997. which said party cannot thereafter disprove (Remedial Law by Herrera. The Decision dated 18 June 2001 of the Regional Trial Court of Manila. in a Resolution. A judicial admission is an admission made in the course of the proceedings in the same case. 3 of Annex “15” of petition).[24] The decretal portion of the 21 October 2002 Court of Appeals’ Decision. raising the following grounds. in the light of the foregoing. Thus.

79157. 1994 DUE TO NON-COMPLIANCE WITH PROCEDURAL RULES. entitled.[28] .ITS DECISION BY RELYING SOLELY AND EXCLUSIVELY ON THE MARCH 28. v. Rodil Enterprises.R. 2005 DECISION OF THE COURT OF APPEALS AND DESPITE THE FACT THAT THE SAID DECISION HAS NOT YET BECOME FINAL AND EXECUTORY. DESPITE THE FACT THAT ITS PREVIOUS PETITION FOR REVIEW FILED WITH THE COURT OF APPEALS OF THE SAME DECISION OF THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT DATED 8 FEBRUARY 1994 HAD BEEN DISMISSED BY THE COURT OF APPEALS IN ITS RESOLUTION DATED NOVEMBER 17. SP No. 4968. Inc.R. The Office of the President and Ides O’Racca Building Tenants Association. dated 28 March 2005 in CA-G. Inc. III THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS COMMITTED A SERIOUS REVERSIBLE ERROR AND A GRAVE MISAPPREHENSION OF THE FACTS AND MISAPPRECIATION OF THE EVIDENCE WHEN IT RULED THAT PETITIONER IS A SUBLESSEE OF RESPONDENT AND THAT PETITIONER WAS REMISS IN THE PAYMENT OF HIS RENTALS OVER THE PREMISES. NO. 79517 SEEKING TO NULLIFY THE ORDER OF EXECUTION BY THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT OF ITS 8 FEBRUARY 1994 DECISION IN OP CASE NO. We shall address the first ground raised by petitioner with regard to the alleged reliance of the Court of Appeals on the Decision of the Tenth Division of the same court. II RESPONDENT RODIL ENTERPRISES IS GUILTY OF FORUM SHOPPING WHEN IT FILED THE PETITION FOR CERTIORARI WITH THE COURT OF APPEALS DOCKETED AS CA-G.[27] The Petition is without merit. SP.

79157 in resolving petitioner’s Motion for Reconsideration.R. SP No. SP No. 79517 has not attained finality has become mute when viewed within recent factual developments. More significantly.R. 79517 is premature and misplaced. This belies petitioner’s claim that the resolution on the Motion for Reconsideration was based solely on the ruling of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. SP No. SP No. This Court in a Resolution[29] dated 25 January 2006 denied the Petition for Review on Certiorari filed by the Ides O’Racca Building Tenants Association. SP No.Contrary to petitioner’s contention. 79517 has long reached finality.R. SP No. The ruling in CA-G.R.R.[30] Moreover. Inc. on 12 April 2004.[33] Forum shopping is the act of a party against whom an adverse judgment has been rendered in one forum. As respondent Rodil Enterprises asseverated. we do not find that the Court of Appeals was in error when it took notice of the ruling in CA-G. 79517.[32] after it filed an Appeal with the appellate court in CA-G. 34586. for the appellate court to ignore a decision rendered by a division thereof would be to turn a blind eye on a valid judgment rendered by the same appellate body. docketed as CA-G. thereon. the appellate court issued a Resolution. seeking another and possibly favorable opinion in another forum other than by appeal or special civil action ofcertiorari. Neither can we give merit to petitioner’s submission that the reliance by the Court of Appeals on its Decision in CA-G. We come to the second ground raised by the petitioner. the contention of the petitioner that the Decision in CA-G. 79157.[34] .R.R. SP No. this Court denied with finality the Motion for Reconsideration of the 25 January 2006 Resolution for lack of compelling reason or substantial argument.[31] granting petitioner a hearing on its Motion for Reconsideration as the grounds cited therein needed further clarification. Petitioner argues that Rodil Enterprises is guilty of forum shopping when it filed the Petition for Certiorari with the Court of Appeals. On 20 March 2006.

Petitioner assails the factual findings of the Court of Appeals . SP No. We proceed to the final ground raised by the petitioner for the allowance of the instant Petition. and the Supplemental Contract of no force and effect. on appeal to this Court.The question of forum shopping is not even material to the instant petition. SP No.R.R.R. which was the basis of the Order of Execution. 79517.R. No. 67201 now before us. 79517 was already given due course by the Court of Appeals and its ruling therein has long attained finality when. at first instance. Case No.R. docketed as G. 79517 was instituted during the pendency of CA-G. SP No.R. such question should have been raised by petitioner. SP No. These cases are separate and distinct from CA-G. which reversed the ruling of the RTC. dated 12 May 2005 in CA G. SP No. Whatever matters concerning the said case is now beyond the jurisdiction of this Court to resolve. SP No. ordering Luciano Tan to vacate the premises and peacefully deliver possession to Rodil Enterprises.R. 34586 is before this Court for consideration. before the Court of Appeals in CA-G. 79157 was a Petition for Review on Certiorari seeking to nullify the Order of Execution of the Office of the President of its 8 February 1994 Decision in OP Case No. SP No. 169892.P. CA-G. 79157 nor CA-G. 34586 was an appeal on the Decision in O. SP No. It must be emphasized that neither CA-G. we denied the said appeal with finality in our Resolutions dated 25 January 2000 and dated 20 March 2006. and affirmed the MeTC. 4968 finding the Renewal of Contract of Lease. What are assailed in the instant Petition are the Decision of the Court of Appeals.R.R. SP No. 34586. On the other hand.R. 67201. dated 21 October 2002 and the Resolution. It should be noted that the petition in CA-G. SP No. CAG. If there has indeed been forum shopping when CA-G. The matter in controversy is the refusal of Luciano Tan to pay the monthly rentals over Botica Divisoria under the contract of sublease between the parties.R. 4968.

2000.when it ruled that there was a judicial admission as to petitioner’s liability under a contract of sublease between him and Rodil Enterprises.[35] On 14 August 2000. to wit: On second call. and 2. 2000 on or before June 30.00 representing rentals from September. The MeTC issued an Order.00. in the amount of P467. made in open court.000. and then. dated 27 June 2000 of the following import.) that the defendant [Luciano Tan] will pay P440. reiterated in his Motion to Allow Defendant to Deposit Rentals. which is the outstanding obligation of the defendant as of June.500. citing Section 27. 1997 up to the present. 2000.00 on or before the 5th day of each month after June 30. To resolve this issue. and the subsequent monthly rentals as it falls due. Petitioner posits that the aforesaid admission. a reading of the significant orders of the MeTC and the pleadings filed by petitioner is warranted. praying that he be allowed to deposit the rentals due as of August 2000. petitioner filed a Motion to Allow Defendant to Deposit Rentals with the MeTC.) the defendant [Luciano Tan] will pay the monthly rentals computed at P13. Rule 130 of the Rules of .750. cannot be taken as an admission of his liability. the parties and counsel agreed in principle in open court to the following terms to put an end to this civil case for ejectment between them: 1.

If in the course thereof. the admission is admissible to prove such indebtedness (Moran. Thus. 5. 12 Pac. Court of Appeals.[37] to wit: To determine the admissibility or non-admissibility of an offer to compromise. p. 9 L. v. ed. Vol. inter alia. the circumstances of the case and the intent of the party making the offer should be considered. The MeTC found that petitioner did not contest the existence of the sublease.Court. that an offer of compromise in a civil case is not a tacit admission of liability. 186 SCRA 640 [1990].. and his . if a party denies the existence of a debt but offers to pay the same for the purpose of buying peace and avoiding litigation. This much was elucidated by this Court in Trans-Pacific Industrial Supplies.]).M. the MeTC and the Court of Appeals properly appreciated petitioner’s admission as an exception to the general rule of inadmissibility. Handicraft Manufacturing Corp. Indeed. Inc. 325 [1973 ed.[38] Similarly. 233 [1980 ed. in the case of Varadero de Manila v. Comments on the Rules of Court. It is not admissible in evidence against the offeror. v. the offer of settlement is inadmissible. In Varadero¸ there was neither an expressed nor implied denial of liability. Holbrook.[39] the Court applied the exception to the general rule. is not iron-clad. the Court did not apply the rule of exclusion of compromise negotiations. The rule. (US) 84.] citing McNiel v. and considering that the only question discussed was the amount to be paid.[36] which states. The general rule is an offer of compromise in a civil case is not an admission of liability. the defendant expressed a willingness to pay the plaintiff. p. then. 1009). Finding that there was no denial of liability. In the case at bar. x x x. Court of Appeals. but during the course of the abortive negotiations therein. an offer of settlement is an effective admission of a borrower’s loan balance (L. however. Insular Lumber Co. Vol. the party making the offer admits the existence of an indebtedness combined with a proposal to settle the claim amicably. Francisco. VII. Rules of Court.

affirming and reinstating the 6 October 2000 Decision of the MeTC in Civil Case No. dated 18 October 1999 was not denied by petitioner. No. 135537.00 on or before the 5th day of each month after 30 June 2000. the validity of which has been upheld by this Court in the consolidated cases of G.R.00. as to the amount of indebtedness in the form of rentals due. The Order of the MeTC dated 27 June 2000 was clear that the petitioner agreed in open court to pay the amount of P440.[41] WHEREFORE. 166584 are AFFIRMED. wherein petitioner stated that the rentals due on the premises in question from September 1997 up to the present amounted to P467. Finally. The Decision dated 21 October 2002 and the Resolution dated 12 May 2005 in CA-G. which said party cannot thereafter disprove. 67201. and that all proofs submitted by him contrary thereto or inconsistent therewith should be ignored whether objection is interposed by a party or not. and affirmed by the Court of Appeals finds particular significance when viewed together with his Motion to Allow Defendant to Deposit Rentals. The Court of Appeals agreed with the MeTC. Indeed. Petitioner cannot now be allowed to reject the same.R.000. The petitioner’s judicial admission in open court.[40] A judicial admission is an admission made by a party in the course of the proceedings in the same case. and that petitioner will pay the monthly rentals computed at P13. representing petitioner’s unpaid rentals from September 1997 to June 2000. the existence of the Contract of Lease. This expressed admission was coupled with a proposal to liquidate.counsel made frank representations anent the former’s liability in the form of rentals. . SP No. as of the date of filing the Motion. for purposes of the truth of some alleged fact. but also.750. The Motion to Allow Defendant to Deposit Rentals was deemed by the MeTC as an explicit acknowledgment of petitioner’s liability on the subleased premises. An admission made in the pleading cannot be controverted by the party making such admission and are conclusive as to him. not only as to his liability. 129609 and G. we find a categorical admission on the part of petitioner. as found by the MeTC. The contracts that were assailed by petitioner are the contracts dated 18 and 25 May 1992. Costs against petitioners.00.R.500. the Petition is DENIED. No.

. SECOND DIVISION RUSTICO ABAY.. JR...... JJ......R. Petitioners... CARPIO MORALES. and BRION. 165896 Present: QUISUMBING....-x .SO ORDERED. Chairperson..... G. PEOPLE OF THEPHILIPPINES. JR..versus TINGA. Respondent... J... 2008 x... VELASCO........... and REYNALDO DARILAG... Promulgated: September 19... No......... ..

DECISION QUISUMBING. Said information reads: xxxx That on or about 7:30 o’clock in the evening of February 17. who are principals by direct participation. Reynaldo Darilag. Laguna. Reynaldo Darilag y Apolinario. The facts are as follows: On January 13. Rustico Abay. Jr.000. 9045-B. 2003 and the Resolution[2] dated October 14. P3. Ramon Punzalan y Carpena. The Court of Appeals had affirmed the Decision[3] of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of San Pedro. 2004 of the Court of Appeals in CA G. 1994. unlawfully and feloniously divest and take away personalties of the passengers and/or occupants therein. Cruz. J. finding petitioners guilty of the crime of Highway Robbery in Criminal Case No. who are principals by indispensable cooperation and mutually helping each other.: This petition for review assails the Decision[1] dated October 27..00 cash. accused Ramoncito Aban y Casiano. Ramoncito Aban. Isagani Espeleta y Arguelles and Cesar Camacho y Deolazo.00 dollars and eyeglasses (Perare) worth P5. among them were: a) b) Thelma Andrade y Lorenzana.R. did then and there wilfully. Isagani Espeleta. Branch 31. Province of Laguna.00. conspiring and confederating together with Ariston Reyes y Plaza. Gloria Tolentino y Pamatmat. at the South Luzon Expressway. $2.500. Ernesto Ricalde.000. CR No. Cesar Camacho. an Information was filed charging Rustico Abay. P30. and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. Laguna and a semi stainless owner type jeep with plate number PJD-599 as backup vehicle. Leonardo Perello and Danilo Pascual with the crime of Highway Robbery/Brigandage.00 cash. Jr.000. Municipality of Biñan. form themselves as band of robbers and conveniently armed with handguns and deadly bladed weapons. Ariston Reyes. and while on board a Kapalaran Bus Line with plate number DVT-527 bound for Sta. accused with the use of the aforesaid handguns and bladed weapons with intent to gain and taking the passengers of the bus by surprise. . Leonardo Perello y Esguerra and Danilo Pascual y Lagata. Ernesto Ricalde y Jovillano. 1995. 25212. y Serafico. Ramon Punzalan.

as follows: 1) Ramoncito Aban y Casiano with prison number 121577 as recidivist. Branch 34. having been convicted by final judgment on September 2.00. having been convicted by final judgment on March 11. being prison guards. by a band and with the use of motor vehicle. 039 by the RTC. but nevertheless. that is by the timely medical assistance rendered to Rogelio Ronillo y Lumboy. in Criminal Case No. With the additional aggravating circumstance that accused Isagani Espeleta y Arguelles and Cesar Camacho y Deolazo. 3874-M for Robbery with Homicide. have taken advantage of their public position by bringing out prison inmates and equipped them with deadly weapons and were utilized in the commission of robbery: With the further additional aggravating circumstance on the following accused/inmates. Manila in Criminal Case No.00 cash. Branch 5. 1982 by the CFI. and to his damage and prejudice and to the damages and prejudices of the following: a) b) c) Thelma Andrade y Lorenzana in the sum of P3. convicted on March 25.00 That the commission of the offense was attended with the aggravating circumstances of nighttime. as recidivist. Cagayan and as a recidivist for having been previously . having been convicted by final judgment on June 15. assorted used clothes of undetermined amount. Quezon City. Gloria Tolentino y Pamatmat in the sum of P30. and by reason or on occasion of the said robbery. 1991 by the RTC. 1987 by the RTC Branch 94. 82-3001 for Robbery.000.c) d) Lilian Ojeda y Canta. did not produce by reason of causes independent of the will of the accused. Malolos.00. Lilian Ojeda y Canta in the sum of P120. 2) Ariston Reyes y Plaza with prison number 115906-P. 37432 for Robbery. 3) Reynaldo Darilag y Apolinario with prison number 129552-P for reiteracion or habituality for having been previously punished for an offense of murder in Criminal Case No. P120. and for Reiteracion or habituality for having served sentence for Homicide. Bulacan. accused shot passenger Rogelio Ronillo y Lumboy.500. Paul Masilang y Reyes. Quezon City. in Criminal Case No. inflicting upon him gunshot wounds on the neck. thus. Branch VI. 1984 by the RTC. Tuguegarao. accused performed all the acts of execution that would produce the crime of homicide.

convicted by final judgment on July 8. y Serafico with prison number 132566-P as a recidivist for having been previously convicted by final judgment on August 31. Jr. She said that . 1992 by the RTC. 17738 for simple theft. 1981. Branch 163 Manila. to wit: January 8. and Having been previously convicted by final judgment by the City Court of San Pablo City on March 30. Gloria Tolentino and Ramoncito Aban. [4] When arraigned. the bus she was on was held-up. on September 11. 040 for Robbery. October 7. San Pablo City on the following dates. Lucena City in Criminal Case No. 1987 by the same Court in Criminal Case No. as a recidivist for having been previously convicted by final judgment on August 2. 2549 for Theft. 1981 in Criminal Case No. The prosecution presented the following witnesses: Thelma Andrade. 4) Rustico Abay. Thus. testified that in the evening of February 17. Ramoncito Aban. However. December 8. upon motion filed by accused Ramoncito Aban. 1981 in Criminal Case No. 2550-SP for Carnapping. in Criminal Case No. in Criminal Case No. Thelma Andrade. pleaded “guilty” to the crime of simple robbery and on even date. 5) Ramon Punzalan y Carpena with prison number 113605-P as recidivist for having been previously convicted by final judgment by the RTC. 1983 in Criminal Case No. 1994. 6) Ernesto R[i]calde y Jov[i]llano with prison number N92P-2735. all the accused pleaded not guilty. 71060 for Theft. a conductress of the Kapalaran Bus Line. Branch 54. trial proceeded with respect to the other accused. CONTRARY TO LAW. for Robbery in Band. with the assistance of his counsel. Branch 111. 1997. Meanwhile. with the conformity of the public prosecutor and private complainants Thelma Andrade and Gloria Tolentino. the trial court sentenced him. 91-679 for simple theft. he was allowed to withdraw his earlier plea of “not guilty”. 2454-SP. 1988 by the RTC.

and Darilag.m. testified that on February 22. Jr.. Punzalan. 1994 hold-up was the fourth staged by their group. the last witness. Ariston Reyes. testified that someone shouted “hold-up” and ordered them to bow their heads. According to Aban. Branch 31 found petitioners Abay. According to Tolentino. testified that they were at home then. Darilag.[9] Genaro Alberto. Darilag. Jr. as one of the companions of the robbers.. Jr. 1994. Camacho and Espeleta. presented the testimony of petitioners Rustico Abay. Abay. the RTC of San Pedro. took her money and pieces of jewelry and handed them over to Reynaldo Darilag. a prison guard at the Bureau of Corrections. 2000. a passenger of the bus. the other co-accused. Ricalde.[10] In a Decision dated November 29. Jr. and Genaro Alberto. 1994. 13 and 17. and 8:00 p. Reyes and Ricalde. testified that during the headcount of the inmates conducted at 5:00 p. took him and his companions.[6] Ramoncito Aban. and all four hold-ups were staged by the same persons. He said they held-up a Kapalaran bus and it was Punzalan and Darilag who took the money and other belongings of the passengers in the bus. and Ernesto Ricalde as two of the other companions of Aban. testified that they were confined in the NBP at the time the incident happened.[8] Pascual and Perello. Perello and Pascual. who were detention prisoners. She also identified Rustico Abay. the fares she collected from the passengers of the bus. 1994. Laguna.[7] The defense. She also identified Rustico Abay. on board the owner-type jeepney of Camacho to stage a hold-up. both civilians.Ramoncito Aban took from her.. the other hold-ups were carried out on February 11. Jr. The trial court decreed as follows: . as well as the other accused guilty of the crime charged. He further testified that the February 22. All the accused denied participation in the robbery that happened on February 17.[5] Gloria Tolentino. who were both prison guards of the New Bilibid Prison (NBP). Abay. Reyes. on February 17. at gunpoint. the man seated beside her.m. She obeyed the order but once in a while she would raise her head. Jr. no inmate was found to be missing. for its part. and Reynaldo Darilag.

but their motion was denied. Ricalde and Reyes. With respect to accused-appellants Rustico Abay. Ernesto Ricalde. y Serafico. Jr. Cesar Camacho y Deolazo. are concerned. 9045-B.000. Jr. this Court hereby renders judgment convicting accused Ernesto Ricalde y Jovillano. Hence. the amount of P3. Camacho and Punzalan of the crime charged but affirmed the conviction of petitioners Abay. Reynaldo Darilag and Ariston Reyes.WHEREFORE. Rustico Abay. Branch 31. inCriminal Case No. the amount of P30.000 and US$2.500 and Gloria Tolentino. and 3) to pay the costs. is REVERSED and SET ASIDE. the assailed decision of the Regional Trial Court of San Pedro. Laguna.[12] Petitioners Abay. nine (9) months and eleven (11) days as maximum.Ariston Reyes y Plaza.[11] The Court of Appeals on appeal acquitted Espeleta. Unless held for any other charge/charges their immediate release is hereby ordered. Jr. 2003 states: WHEREFORE. but only insofar as accused-appellants Isagani Espeleta. and Darilag. Isagani Espeleta y Arguelles. 2) to indemnify Thelma Andrade. SO ORDERED. Reynaldo Darilag y Apolicario. Leonardo Perello y Esguerra and Danilo Pascual y Lagata of the crime of highway robbery/holdup attended by the aggravating circumstance of a band only and hereby sentences each of them: 1) to suffer an indeterminate penalty of imprisonment *of+ … twelve (12) years and one (1) day as minimum to thirteen (13) years. in Criminal Case No. Cesar Camacho and Ramon Punzalan are hereby ACQUITTED. Cesar Camacho and Ramon Punzalan. Jr. Isagani Espeleta. Branch 31. both of reclusion temporal in its minimum period. the said decision of the Regional Trial Court of San Pedro. finding them guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of highway robbery/hold-up is hereby AFFIRMED IN TOTO. Laguna. SO ORDERED. for insufficiency of evidence. Ramon Punzalan y Carpena. The dispositive portion of the Decision dated October 27. they filed the instant petition raising a single issue: . 9045-B. and Darilag moved for a reconsideration of the aforesaid decision..

They fault the trial court and Court of Appeals for disregarding their defense of alibi and in giving credence to the testimonies of Andrade and Tolentino. pointing to petitioners as his co-participants.[16] Here. The Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) challenges the petition on the ground that the petition raises a question of fact. we note that it was not Aban’s extrajudicial confession but his court testimony reiterating his declarations in his extrajudicial admission. THELMA ANDRADE AND GLORIA TOLENTINO. At the outset. They argue that Ramoncito Aban is not a credible witness and that he testified on an incident which happened on February 22. did the Court of Appeals err in affirming on the basis of the testimonies of said three witnesses the conviction of petitioners Abay.[15] After a thorough examination of the evidence presented. which was instrumental in convicting petitioners of the crime charged. contending that these testimonies were incredible and unsubstantiated.WHETHER OR NOT PETITIONERS MAY BE CONVICTED ON THE BASIS OF THE TESTIMONIES OF RAMONCITO ABAN.[13] Stated simply. It also maintains that Aban is a credible witness and that petitioners’ defense of alibi cannot prevail over the positive testimonies of the prosecution witnesses. They likewise point to a related case filed against them wherein they were acquitted. They likewise contend that the lower courts erred in relying on Aban’s extrajudicial confession which was coerced. 1994 as alleged in the information.[14] petitioners Abay. 1994 and not on February 17. we are in agreement that the appeal lacks merit. Petitioners also claim that no physical evidence linking petitioners to the crime was presented. Settled is the rule that when the extrajudicial admission of a conspirator is confirmed at the trial. being a testimony of an eyewitness admissible in evidence against those it implicates. it ceases to be hearsay. and Darilag assert that their guilt has not been proven beyond reasonable doubt. Thus. Jr. and Darilag? In their petition. Jr. the extrajudicial confession of Aban was affirmed by him in open court during the trial. It becomes instead a judicial admission. such .

Biñan. Petitioners claim that no physical evidence was presented by the prosecution linking the petitioners to the crime charged.[17] Further. As correctly observed by the OSG. Camacho and Punzalan. it is also worth stressing as part of the prosecution evidence that Aban testified that malefactors used the same route and strategy in the perpetration of the robberies which happened on four occasions -. not only is their conviction based on the testimony of Aban. 17 and 22. 1994. but it was also established by the eyewitness testimony of Andrade and Tolentino who identified positively the petitioners in open court. the alleged failure of the prosecution to present physical evidence does not adversely affect the over-all weight of the evidence actually presented. since Aban’s testimony is not credible as to Espeleta. they were acquitted by the trial court of Imus. anent the herein petitioners’ participation in the crime. on the witness stand was testifying specifically also about the offense that took place on February 17 in the Expressway. We likewise agree in finding without merit the petitioners’ argument that. however. 13. Other than the testimony of Aban. In contrast. the petitioners are not similarly situated as their aforementioned co-accused. not February 17.confession already partook of judicial testimony which is admissible in evidence against the petitioners. Cavite. petitioners assert that in a similar case filed against them. But in our considered view. Laguna. then it should also be held not credible as to them. there is no showing that the amount and quality of evidence in the present . that Aban.February 11. What happened on February 22 was but a replication. It is very clear. However. Granted that Ramoncito Aban in fact testified on the details of the robbery which happened on February 22. so to speak. 1994. Physical evidence would be merely corroborative because there are credible witnesses who testified on the complicity of petitioners in the crime charged. of the robbery scenarios earlier perpetrated by the same gang on three previous dates. there were no other witnesses who testified on the participation of Espeleta. But in this case. Petitioners further aver that Aban testified on a robbery which took place on February 22. 1994. 1994. Camacho and Punzalan who were acquitted.

[21] In this case. this Court has consistently ruled that the defense of alibi must be received with suspicion and caution. the scene of the crime at the time of its commission. Worth stressing. Tolentino and Aban would openly concoct a story that would send innocent men to jail. But as the trial court correctly ruled. or near. we are in agreement with the OSG that the defense of alibi cannot prevail over the positive identification of the accused in this case. but also because it can be easily fabricated. and stress that Andrade and Tolentino were not able to identify all the accused. Moreover. Indeed.case and those in the case where petitioners were allegedly acquitted are the same. if petitioners truly believed that the prosecution evidence is deficient to establish their guilt. An alibi cannot prevail over the positive identification of the petitioners by credible witnesses who have no motive to testify falsely.[18] Additionally. The OSG. petitioners claim that the trial court and the Court of Appeals erred in disregarding their defense of alibi. their defense could have earlier filed a demurrer to evidence in this case. petitioners’ defense of alibi rested solely upon their own selfserving testimonies. For their defense of alibi to prosper. petitioners assert that the testimonies of Andrade and Tolentino are incredible and unsubstantiated. But. it should have been clearly and indisputably demonstrated by them that it was physically impossible for them to have been at.[20] Alibi is a weak defense that becomes even weaker in the face of the positive identification of the accused. maintains that the testimonies of Andrade and Tolentino are credible since the facts testified to by them and Aban support each other. it was not impossible for the petitioners to be at the scene of the crime since petitioners’ place of detention is less than an hour ride from the crime scene. Absent the most compelling reason. not only because it is inherently weak and unreliable.[19] However. no dubious reason or improper motive was established to render the testimonies of Andrade. They question the failure of Tolentino to identify Punzalan in court. on the other hand. . they did not.[22] Similarly. it is highly inconceivable why Andrade. Tolentino and Aban false and unbelievable.

Puno:[24] In fine.We find petitioners‘ allegations untenable. and not acts of robbery committed against only a predetermined or particular victim…[Emphasis supplied. 532. It is but logical that the witnesses would not be able to identify all of the accused. they were only able to raise their heads from time to time. extortion or other unlawful purposes.[23] Highway Robbery/Brigandage is the seizure of any person for ransom. indiscriminate highway robbery. the purpose of brigandage is. It must be noted that it took years before Tolentino was placed on the witness stand. During the robbery.] The elements of the crime of Highway Robbery/Brigandage have been clearly established in this case. Considering the testimonies of witnesses and the evidence presented by the parties. As to the allegation that the testimony of Andrade and Tolentino are incredible because they were not able to identify all the accused deserves scant consideration. we are in agreement that the crime of Highway Robbery/Brigandage was duly proven in this case. 532 punishes as highway robbery or brigandage only acts of robbery perpetrated by outlaws indiscriminately against any person or persons on Philippine highways as defined therein. the prosecution evidence demonstrated with clarity that the petitioners‘ group was organized for the purpose of committing robbery in a highway. as held in People v. As defined under Section 2(e) of Presidential Decree No. the crime is only robbery. Next. Tolentino and Aban corroborate each other. . If the purpose is only a particular robbery. Their testimonies agree on the essential facts and substantially corroborate a consistent and coherent whole. committed by any person on any Philippine highway. The failure of Tolentino to point to Punzalan in court does not dent her credibility as a witness. inter alia. First. or the taking away of the property of another by means of violence against or intimidation of person or force upon things or other unlawful means. The Kapalaran bus was chosen indiscriminately by the accused upon reaching their agreed destination -Alabang. that Presidential Decree No. Muntinlupa. The testimonies given by Andrade. there is no predetermined victim. Also. they were told to bow their heads and hence. or robbery in band if there are at least four armed participants… Further.

and REYES. J. and Reynaldo Darilag are guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of Highway Robbery/Brigandage. Laguna. Chairperson. are hereby AFFIRMED. G. Jr. Branch 31 in Criminal Case No. (MAXICARE). THIRD DIVISION PHILIPPINE HEALTH-CARE PROVIDERS.R. 2000 of the Regional Trial Court of San Pedro. 2003 and the Resolution dated October 14.R. INC. No pronouncement as to costs. CR No. WHEREFORE. CORONA. . 25212..All told. No. affirming the Decision dated November 29. 171052 Present: YNARES-SANTIAGO. 9045-B.versus AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ. we rule that petitioners Rustico Abay. 2004 of the Court of Appeals in CA G. SO ORDERED. . the Decision dated October 27. JJ. Petitioner.* NACHURA.

The facts. follow: .R. 66040 which affirmed in toto the Decision[2] dated October 8. sole proprietor of Cara Health Services. 2008 x------------------------------------------------------------------------------------x DECISION NACHURA. 1999 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC). Respondent. as found by the CA and adopted by Maxicare in its petition. of Makati City in an action for breach of contract and damages filed by respondent Carmela Estrada. (Maxicare).: This petition for review on certiorari assails the Decision[1] dated June 16. CV No. Inc.CARMELA ESTRADA/CARA HEALTH SERVICES. 2005 of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G. against Philippine Health-Care Providers. Branch 135. J. Promulgated: January 28.

[Maxicare] is a domestic corporation engaged in selling health insurance plans whose Chairman Dr.: Commission In consideration of the performance of your functions and duties as specified in this letter-agreement. 1991. Macasaet. Plaintiff-appellee [Estrada] submitted proposals and made representations to the officers of MERALCO regarding the MAXICARE Plan but when MERALCO decided to subscribe to the MAXICARE Plan. and in fact. MERALCO account included. The letter agreement provided for plaintiff-appellee’s *Estrada’s+ compensation in the form of commission. and 10% on standard plans of commissionable amount on corporate accounts from all membership dues collected and remitted by you to [Maxicare]. viz. group accounts. 1990. [Maxicare] formally appointed *Estrada+ as its “General Agent. [Maxicare] allegedly engaged the services of Carmela Estrada who was doing business under the name of CARA HEALTH [SERVICES] to promote and sell the prepaid group practice health care delivery program called MAXICARE Plan with the position of Independent Account Executive. On September 15.” evidenced by a letter-agreement dated February 16. 1991. [Estrada] alleged that it did apply with [Maxicare] for the MERALCO account and other accounts. family. was renewed on February 11. its franchise to solicit corporate accounts. [Maxicare] shall pay you a commission equivalent to 15 to 18% from individual. Chief Operating Officer Virgilio del Valle. . [Maxicare] directly negotiated with MERALCO regarding the terms and conditions of the agreement and left plaintiff-appellee [Estrada] out of the discussions on the terms and conditions. *Maxicare+ alleged that it followed a “franchising system” in dealing with its agents whereby an agent had to first secure permission from [Maxicare] to list a prospective company as client.5 to 10% on tailored fit plans. 2. Roberto K. and Sales/Marketing Manager Josephine Cabrera were impleaded as defendants-appellants.

c) P4. As of May 1996. if any.00 in 1994. 1992. the total amount of premium paid by MERALCO to [Maxicare] was P20.782.169. 1991. through counsel. The contract was renewed twice for a term of three (3) years each. b) P3. 2) retired executives and their dependents who have opted to enroll and/or continue their MAXICARE membership up to age 65.223.00 in December 1991.00 in 1992. Defendants-appellants [Maxicare] and its officers filed their Answer with Counterclaim on September 13. [Estrada] filed a complaint on March 18. e) P5.394.e.) and that no agent was given the go signal to intervene in the negotiations for the terms and conditions and the signing of the service agreement with MERALCO and the other accounts so that if ever [Maxicare] was indebted to [Estrada].788.292. docketed as Civil Case No. alleging that: plaintiff-appellee [Estrada] had no cause of action. 1991 to November 30. raffled to Branch 135. demanded from [Maxicare] that it be paid commissions for the MERALCO account and nine (9) other accounts.873.555. On March 24. respectively.102. denied *Estrada’s+ claims for commission for the MERALCO and other accounts because [Maxicare] directly negotiated with MERALCO and the other accounts(.335.00. should be is against [Maxicare] only and not against its officers. 1992 while the second took effect on December 1. 1995. CARA HEALTH’s appointment as agent under the February 16.00 in 1995. 93-935. MERALCO eventually subscribed to the MAXICARE Plan and signed a Service Agreement directly with [Maxicare] for medical coverage of its qualified members. and P2. *Maxicare+. and 3) regular MERALCO female executives (exclusively for maternity benefits).00 and P43. In reply. 1992.450. The premium amounts paid by MERALCO to [Maxicare] were alleged to be the following: a) P215.00 in 1993.710. and Mr. Its duration was for one (1) year from December 1. plaintiff-appellee [Estrada].564. 1993 against [Maxicare] and its officers with the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Makati City. 1993. it was only for P1. Enrique Acosta.l2 as commissions on the accounts of Overseas Freighters Co.On November 28.108. i. d)P4. . 1991 letter-agreement to promote the MAXICARE Plan was for a period of one (1) year only.: 1) the enrolled dependent/s of regular MERALCO executives.00 in May 1996. the cause of action. the first started on December 1. through counsel. 1993 and their Amended Answer with Counterclaim on September 28.

and P10. raising the following issues.000. 1995.169.[6] .000.000.00 in litigation expenses. Whether the Court of Appeals committed serious error in affirming Estrada’s entitlement to commissions for the execution of the service agreement between Meralco and Maxicare.000. and attorney’s fees in the amount of P100. In ruling for Estrada. representing her commission for the total premiums paid by Meralco to Maxicare from the year 1991 to 1996. v. Corollarily.335. 1993. By way of counterclaim.[3] After trial.00 in exemplary damages.00.said agency was not renewed after the expiration of the one (1) year period. P100.000.00 in attorney’s fees. whether Estrada is entitled to commissions for the two (2) consecutive renewals of the service agreement effective on December 1. Inc. to wit: 1. 1992[5] and December 1. P100.00. On appeal. Court of Appeals. defendantsappellants [Maxicare] and its officers claimed P100. the RTC found Maxicare liable for breach of contract and ordered it to pay Estrada actual damages in the amount equivalent to 10% of P20. and *Estrada’s+ alleged other clients/accounts were not accredited with [Maxicare] as required. Maxicare comes to this Court and insists on the reversal of the RTC Decision as affirmed by the CA. 2. [Estrada] did not intervene in the negotiations of the contract with MERALCO which was directly negotiated by MERALCO with *Maxicare+.00 in moral damages for each of the officers of [Maxicare] impleaded as defendant. plus legal interest computed from the filing of the complaint on March 18. the CA affirmed in toto the RTC’s decision.[4] Undaunted. since the agency contract on the MAXICARE health plans were not renewed. both the trial and appellate courts held that Estrada was the “efficient procuring cause” in the execution of the service agreement between Meralco and Maxicare consistent with our ruling in Manotok Brothers.

(3) when there is grave abuse of discretion in the appreciation of facts. such as: (1) when the findings of a trial court are grounded entirely on speculation. Estrada is entitled to commissions for the premiums paid under the service agreement between Meralco and Maxicare from 1991 to 1996. Court of Appeals.[9] and the erroneous conclusion upholding Estrada’s entitlement to commissions on contracts completed without her participation.e.We are in complete accord with the trial and appellate courts’ ruling. (6) when the findings of fact are conclusions without mention of the specific evidence on which they are based. the lower courts disregarded Estrada’s admission that the negotiations with Meralco failed. surmises or conjectures. will justify a different conclusion. i. (5) when there is a misappreciation of facts. or fail to notice certain relevant facts which. collection and contemporaneous remittance of premium dues by Estrada to Maxicare. the flawed application of the “efficient procuring cause” doctrine enunciated in Manotok Brothers. are premised on the absence of evidence. are accorded the highest degree of respect and are considered conclusive between the parties. 1991 letter agreement authorizing the payment of commissions only upon satisfaction of twin conditions. (4) when the findings of the appellate court go beyond the issues of the case. or are contradicted by evidence on record. Thus. Maxicare urges us that both the RTC and CA failed to take into account the stipulations contained in the February 19. especially when affirmed by the appellate court. v. Inc. absurd or impossible. . (2) when a lower court’s inference from its factual findings is manifestly mistaken. Well-entrenched in jurisprudence is the rule that factual findings of the trial court. if properly considered.[7] A review of such findings by this Court is not warranted except upon a showing of highly meritorious circumstances..[8]None of the foregoing exceptions which would warrant a reversal of the assailed decision obtains in this instance. Allegedly.

1991. Both courts were one in the conclusion that Maxicare successfully landed the Meralco account for the sale of healthcare plans only by virtue of Estrada’s involvement and participation in the negotiations. and that it was favorably recommended and the same be approved by the Meralco Management Committee. to wit: . using her connections with some of Meralco Executives. Sapitula on September 5. Carmela Estrada has initiated talks with us since November 1990 with regards (sic) to the HMO requirements of both our rank and file employees. making submissions and representations regarding the health plan. 1999 Decision. Plaintiff-appellee *Estrada+ was the efficient “intervening cause” in bringing about the service agreement with Meralco.” xxxx This Court finds that plaintiff-appellee *Estrada’s+ efforts were instrumental in introducing the Meralco account to *Maxicare+ in regard to the latter’s Maxicare health insurance plans. The assailed Decision aptly states: There is no dispute as to the role that plaintiff-appellee [Estrada] played in selling *Maxicare’s+ health insurance plan to Meralco. etc. inviting said executives to dinner meetings. These efforts were recognized by Meralco as shown by the certification issued by its Manpower Planning and Research Staff Head Ruben A. Contrary to Maxicare’s assertion. sending follow-up letters.We are not persuaded. managers and executives. As pointed out by the trial court in its October 8. Plaintiff-appellee *Estrada’s+ efforts consisted in being the first to offer the Maxicare plan to Meralco. the trial and the appellate courts carefully considered the factual backdrop of the case as borne out by the records. to wit: “This is to certify that Ms.

PHPI would still be an anonymity. Donatila San Juan.[11] The jettisoning of the petition is inevitable even upon a close perusal of the merits of the case. Messrs. only questions of law may be put into issue. 1992to then .[12] Even without that admission. We cannot overemphasize the principle that in petitions for review on certiorari under Rules 45 of the Rules of Court. Questions of fact are not cognizable by this Court. It is readily apparent that Maxicare is attempting to evade payment of the commission which rightfully belongs to Estrada as the broker who brought the parties together. Lopez and Guingona of Meralco. The finding of “efficient procuring cause” by the CA is a question of fact which we desist from passing upon as it would entail delving into factual matters on which such finding was based. we are hard pressed to disturb the findings of the RTC. the rule is that factual findings of the trial court.“xxx Had not *Estrada+ introduced Maxicare Plans to her bosom friends. First. Maxicare’s contention that Estrada may only claim commissions from membership dues which she has collected and remitted to Maxicare as expressly provided for in the letter-agreement does not convince us. which the CA affirmed. we note that Meralco’s Assistant VicePresident. Maxicare’s former Chairman Roberto K. In fact. Macasaet testified that Maxicare had been trying to land the Meralco account for two (2) years prior to Estrada’s entry in 1990. are conclusive on this Court when supported by the evidence on record. in a letter[13] dated January 21. xxx”[10] Under the foregoing circumstances. To reiterate. especially those affirmed by the CA.

thus: [O]ne who is engaged.Maxicare President Pedro R. (Maxicare) through the initiative and efforts of Ms. a broker earns his pay merely by bringing the buyer and the seller together. initially closed to Maxicare. categorically acknowledged Estrada’s efforts relative to the sale of Maxicare health plans to Meralco. Prior to this time. In Tan v.[16] . for others.[14] we had occasion to define a broker and distinguish it from an agent. At the very least. Carmela Estrada. On the other hand. never acting in his own name but in the name of those who employed him. its officers. effective December 1. commerce or navigation. on a commission. Sen. The only reason Estrada was not able to participate in the collection and remittance of premium dues to Maxicare was because she was prevented from doing so by the acts of Maxicare. we did not know that Maxicare is a major health care provider in the country. even if no sale is eventually made. [A] broker is one whose occupation is to bring the parties together. Estrada penetrated the Meralco market. who introduced Maxicare to Meralco. 1991 to November 30. and employees. the negotiator between the other parties. We have since negotiated and signed up with Maxicare to provide a health maintenance plan for dependents of Meralco executives. Gullas. Meralco received a proposal from Philippine Health-Care Providers. 1992.[15] An agent receives a commission upon the successful conclusion of a sale. thus: Sometime in 1989. and laid the groundwork for a business relationship. in matter of trade. negotiating contracts relative to property with the custody of which he has no concern. Inc.

willing and able to buy on the owner’s terms. no sale could have been consummated. 1992 addressed to Estrada.[17] To be regarded as the “procuring cause” of a sale as to be entitled to a commission. Without her intervention. The letter contains a unilateral declaration by Maxicare that the efforts initiated and negotiations undertaken by Estrada failed. a broker’s efforts must have been the foundation on which the negotiations resulting in a sale began. thus: As provided for in Section 4 of Rule 129 of the Rules of Court. the latter effectively declares that Estrada is not the “efficient procuring cause” of the sale. result in the accomplishment of the prime objective of the employment of the broker—producing a purchaser ready. Estrada was instrumental in the sale of the Maxicare health plans to Meralco. is not entitled to commissions.[18] Verily. and as such.In relation thereto. Our holding in Atillo III v. refers to a cause originating a series of events which. We observe that this Annex “F” is. Maxicare’s counsel’s letter dated April 10. We intoned therein that in spite of the presence of judicial admissions in a party’s pleading. Thus. the trial court is still given leeway to consider other evidence presented. we have held that the term “procuring cause” in describing a broker’s activity.[20] We ruled. in fact. provides a contrary answer to Maxicare’s ridiculous contention. Court of Appeals. Second.[19] ironically the case cited by Maxicare to bolster its position that the statement in Annex “F” amounted to an admission. the general rule that a judicial admission is conclusive upon the party making it and does not require proof admits of two exceptions: 1) when it is shown that the admission was made . without break in their continuity. Maxicare next contends that Estrada herself admitted that her negotiations with Meralco failed as shown in Annex “F” of the Complaint. such that the service agreement with Meralco was supposedly directly negotiated by Maxicare. The chicanery and disingenuousness of Maxicare’s counsel is not lost on this Court.

” That is the reason for the modifier “such. This may be interpreted as to mean “not in the sense in which the admission is made to appear.”[21] In this case. readily show that Estrada does not concede. For instance.[23] Even a cursory reading of the Complaint and all the pleadings filed thereafter before the RTC. is not. the letter was attached to the Complaint. Clearly. Moreover. and this Court. but cites the admission “out of context. that her negotiations with Meralco failed. Maxicare’s assertion that Estrada herself does not pretend to be the “efficient . an admission of the statements contained therein. especially since the bone of contention relates to Estrada’s entitlement to commissions for the sale of health plans she claims to have brokered. The latter exception allows one to contradict an admission by denying that he made such an admission. Section 34. It is more than obvious from the entirety of the records that Estrada has unequivocally and consistently declared that her involvement as broker is the proximate cause which consummated the sale between Meralco and Maxicare. to demonstrate Maxicare’s bad faith and ill will towards Estrada. although part of Estrada’s Complaint. ipso facto.[22] Rule 132 of the Rules of Court requires the purpose for which the evidence is offered to be specified. or that his admission was taken out of context.through palpable mistake. the letter. and 2) when it is shown that no such admission was in fact made. Undeniably. if a party invokes an “admission” by an adverse party. at any point.” then the one making the admission may show that he made no “such” admission. CA. and offered in evidence.

After muddling the issues and representing that Estrada made an admission that her negotiations with Meralco failed. Considering that we have sustained the lower courts’ factual finding of Estrada’s close. in turn. such entitlement only covers the initial year of the service agreement and should not include the premiums paid for the succeeding renewals thereof. remind every member of the Bar that the practice of law carries with it responsibilities which are not to be trifled with. . Third. we are not wont to disturb Estrada’s complete entitlement to commission for the total premiums paid until May 1996 in the amount ofP20.335. Maxicare’s counsel then proceeds to cite a case which does not.169. We. by any stretch of the imagination.00.procuring cause” in the execution of the service agreement between Meralco and Maxicare is baseless and an outright falsehood. Rule 10. Finally. therefore.02. bolster the flawed contention. Maxicare’s argument that assuming Estrada is entitled to commissions. specifically.02 – A lawyer shall not knowingly misquote or misrepresent the contents of a paper. proximate and causal connection to the sale of health plans. ADMONISH Maxicare’s counsel. fails to impress. the language or the argument of opposing counsel. or assert as a fact that which has not been proved. we likewise affirm the uniform ruling of the RTC and CA that Estrada is entitled to 10% of the total amount of premiums paid[25] by Meralco to Maxicare as of May 1996. to wit: Rule 10. or the text of a decision or authority. or knowingly cite as law a provision already rendered inoperative by repeal or amendment. and. Maxicare’s counsel ought to be reacquainted with Canon 10[24] of the Code of Professional Responsibility.

WHEREFORE. the petition is hereby DENIED. . SO ORDERED. premises considered and finding no reversible error committed by the Court of Appeals. Costs against the petitioner.