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CALIXTO SAÑADO, petitioners, vs. THE COURT OF APPEALS and SIMEON G. NEPOMUCENO, respondents. [G.R. No. 108338. April 17, 2001] MELO, J.

: This case is one of the older ones which was raffled to undersigned ponente pursuant to the Court’s Resolution in A.M. 00-9-03 dated February 27, 2001 and concerns a petition seeking the reversal of the decision of the Court of Appeals dated September 11, 1992 and its resolution dated October 15, 1992 denying reconsideration. The Court of Appeals modified the decision of Branch 18 of the Regional Trial Court of the Ninth Judicial Region stationed in Pagadian City which was rendered in favor of herein petitioner. Disposed thus the Court of Appeals in its CA-G.R. CV No. 23165 per Justice Montenegro, with Justices Paras and Ordoñez-Benitez concurring: WHEREFORE, premises considered, judgment is hereby rendered: (a) affirming the judgment appealed from with modification as follows: 1. Ordering and sentencing defendant-appellant Simeon G. Nepomuceno to pay the share of plaintiff-appellee in the amount of P168,000.00 covering the period of four (4) years from February 19, 1975 to February 19, 1979, with only eight (8) hectares considered to be productive; 2. Ordering defendant-appellant Simeon G. Nepomuceno to pay reasonable rental of the fishpond area in question from February 20, 1979 to March 20, 1980 in the amount of P25,000.00; 3. Ordering and sentencing defendant-appellant Simeon G. Nepomuceno and defendant Edgar J. Chu, to jointly pay plaintiff-appellee the reasonable rentals of the fishpond area in question at the rate of P25,000.00 per annum from March 21, 1980 to January 2, 1985; 4. Ordering and sentencing defendant-appellant Simeon G. Nepomuceno and defendant Edgar J. Chu, to jointly and severally pay plaintiff-appellee the sum of P100,000.00 as attorney' fees; 5. Ordering and sentencing defendant-appellant Simeon G. Nepomuceno and Edgar J. Chu to pay the costs; and (b) reversing the decision appealed from insofar as it ordered "defendants jointly to restore possession and control of the fishpond area in question to the plaintiff‖. (pp. 37-38, Rollo.) The generative facts are chronicled as follows: The controversy began on October 28, 1969 when the defunct Philippine Fisheries Commission issued in favor of petitioner Sañado Ordinary Fishpond Permit No. F-5810-X covering an area of fifty hectares situated in Bo. Monching Siay, Zamboanga del Sur. As a consequence, petitioner on January 6, 1972 executed a deed of quitclaim involving twenty hectares of the original area of fifty hectares in favor of his uncle and brother (Decision of the Office of the President, p. 46, Rollo). On July 16, 1973, petitioner as First Party and private respondent Nepomuceno as Second Party executed a contract entitled "Contract of Fishpond Development and Financing", which pertinently provided: That the FIRST PARTY is the possessor and holder of a piece of agricultural land with an area of approximately FIFTY (50) HECTARES COVERED BY Ordinary Fishpond Permit No. F-5810-X situated at Monching, Siay, Zamboanga del Sur; That the SECOND PARTY agreed to undertake full expenses for the development of an area of THIRTY (30) hectares, out of the approximately FIFTY (50) hectares, covered by Ordinary Fishpond Permit No. F-5810-X of the FIRST PARTY and which parcel is described and bounded as follows:

xxx xxx

xxx

That the development which shall be undertaken by the SECOND PARTY on the aforesaid area of THIRTY (30) hectares, consists of: a -- Construction of dumps; gates, buildings and other accessories pertinent to the full development of the fishpond area; b -- Construction of dikes and the purchase of Bangus Fry for the said fishpond; That the whole amount invested by the SECOND PARTY for the development of the aforesaid area for fishpond shall first be recovered out of the products of the fishpond area; That after the full investment of the SECOND PARTY shall have been recovered, the sharing basis with the FIRST PARTY shall immediately commence for a period of Four (4) years and the sharing basis shall be in accordance with the following percentage: THIRTY FIVE PERCENT (35%) of the Net per harvest - FIRST PARTY; SIXTY FIVE PERCENT (65%) of the Net per harvest - SECOND PARTY; That after the expiration of the Four (4) years of sharing basis on the Net harvest, this contract of sharing basis shall be renewed at the option of the second party for a period of another Four (4) years; (pp. 26-27, Rollo.) On July 18, 1973, the contracting parties executed a handwritten agreement, modifying the earlier agreement by excluding the area of ten hectares already cultivated and fully developed by petitioner and providing that "the contract will be renewed for another four (4) years with another agreement beneficial to both parties." Simply stated, instead of the renewal being at the option of private respondent, it shall be renewed on terms acceptable to both petitioner and private respondent. Based on the agreement as modified by the aforestated handwritten agreement, private respondent proceeded with the development of the fishpond area, excluding the area of ten hectares already developed by petitioner. On September 28, 1979, the Director of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources recommended to the then Ministry of Natural Resources the conversion of Ordinary Fishpond Permit No. F-5810-X into a 25-year fishpond loan agreement which covered a reduced area of 26.7450 hectares (p. 165, Rollo). Pursuant to said recommendation, Fishpond Lease Agreement No. 3090 was issued to petitioner on October 8, 1979. On March 20, 1980, private respondent waived his rights, interest, and participation over the fishpond area in favor of one Edgar J. Chu. On March 28, 1980, apparently to oppose the issuance of the 25-year fishpond lease agreement in favor of petitioner, private respondent informed the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources in writing of his financing/development contract with petitioner and that the fishpond was almost fully developed at his expense (Ibid.). Parenthetically, sometime that year, private respondent submitted to petitioner an accounting of the income or proceeds of the fishpond as well as his expenditures in the development thereof (tsn, July 5, 1983, pp. 10-14). This document, marked as Exhibit "D" and dated February 19, 1975, showed earnings of the fishpond in the amount of P98,106.35, expenses and advances in the sum of P87,405.25, and cash on hand of P10,701.10. The original copy thereof was filed with the Bureau of Fisheries and Development as evidenced by the stamp of the office thereon. On July 17, 1981, petitioner filed a complaint against private respondent and Edgar J. Chu with the regional trial court docketed as Civil Case No. 2085 for recovery of possession and damages, wherein he alleged that on February 19, 1975, private respondent had already recovered his investment in full; that as of said date, the total earnings had amounted to P98,106.35 leaving an excess of P10,701.10 to be divided between petitioner and private respondent at 35-65 sharing; that the 4-year period during which petitioner and private respondent would share the net harvest commenced on February 19, 1975 and expired on February 18, 1979; that after February 18, 1975, private respondent

Later. are hereby considered complied with.000.00). Rollo. 1975 to February 19.704 (Revising and Consolidating All Laws and Decrees Affecting Fishing and Fisheries) to any qualified applicant pursuant to applicable rules and regulations thereon. 2085 with the trial court.has not accounted for the income of the fishpond and has failed and refused. 23165. 1979 up to the time the same fishpond area shall have been duly restored to the possession of the plaintiff. 1986. 4. Chu (who was said to be the actual possessor of the area) had been dismissed. 1979. Chu's appeal was dismissed. judgment is hereby rendered in favor of the plaintiff and against the defendants: 1. private respondent maintained that: (a) the trial court erred in ruling that private respondent has fully recovered his financial investment in the fishpond area in question as of February 19. and costs. 1991.1989 decision of the Office of the President. an order was issued by then Minister of Agriculture and Food Salvador H. 3. 3050. as well as P100. 1972. For his part. during the pendency of the appeal of Civil Case No. as an attachment to his comment.) Private respondent and Edgar J.00 as attorney's fees. 1989 decision of the Court of Appeals directing "defendants jointly to restore possession and control of the fishpond area to the plaintiff. 125 prohibits the awardee of a fishpond lease agreement from transferring or subletting the fishpond granted to him without the previous consent or approval of the ministry concerned. 1991 restoring possession of the fishpond area to him. only four hectares more or less. he transferred his rights over the 26. IT IS SO ORDERED. (b) the trial court erred in ruling that private respondent cannot waive his right to finance the development of the fishpond area. On June 19. 1991. petitioner's grumble and protest is confined to that portion of the June 19. Setting aside the factual ramifications of the instant case." Petitioner points out that the July 31. he transferred 20 hectares of the original 50-hectare fishpond area to his brother and uncle. during the pendency of the aforesaid Civil Case No. 1982. Chu both appealed the trial court's decision. Elma is a new matter which should not have been treated by the appellate court with legal force and effect because "it was merely incidental to the propriety or impropriety of the issuance of a writ of preliminary mandatory injunction respecting the earlier Writ of Execution granted by the trial court in favor of Calixto Sañado" (p. said order was reconsidered to the extent that private respondent was given priority to apply for the area and that his improvements thereon were not considered forfeited in favor of the government. 1985 which cancelled the Fishpond Lease Agreement No. on January 28. and on September 12. Petitioner elevated the matter to the Office of the President but his appeal was dismissed in a decision rendered on July 31.00 more or less. to deliver petitioner's share of the net harvest for four years which totaled P250. Petitioner then proceeds to mention that on June 11. The appellate court denied the same. including the bond. 1989 decision. we find that the only issue thereof refers to the legal effect and evidentiary weight of the July 19. dated January 28. (2) the Sañado-Nepomuceno contract is not the only instance when petitioner transferred/subleased his rights over the fishpond area without approval of the appropriate ministry head since on January 6.000. Ordering defendant Simeon Nepomuceno to pay the share of plaintiff in the amount of P168. the appellate court issued a resolution dated June 14. Said cancellation was premised on the following factors: (1) violation by petitioner of the terms of the fishpond lease agreement and of Fisheries Administrative Order (FAO) 125 (s. stating that the appeal of Edgar J. 1991 ordering that anyone who had anything to do with the enforcement of the writ of execution issued by the trial court was restrained temporarily from enforcing said writ. 1975 to February 19. and (3) petitioner's failure to develop forty percent of the area within three years and to completely develop the remaining portions within five years. through then Deputy Executive Secretary Magdangal B. An exchange of pleadings followed where.153. 1979) when he transferred/subleased his leasehold rights without government approval.00 per annum reckoned from February 19. Ordering defendants jointly to restore possession and control of the fishpond area in question to the plaintiff. In consequence thereof. Petitioner posits that the appellate court committed grave abuse of discretion in doing so and in applying said matters in its disposition of the case. in gross and evident bad faith despite renewed and repeated demands.7450 area to the Samahang Kabuhayan ng Barangay Monching Association which later assigned its leasehold rights in favor of the Development Bank of the Philippines in consideration of the amount of P653. the Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court's decision as regards petitioner's share in the produce from February 19.000. both to commence from the date of the issuance of the lease agreement in accordance with the terms and conditions of the lease agreement (out of the whole area occupied by petitioner. 2085. the restoration of the subject fishpond to herein petitioner would in effect destroy the essence of said Malacañang decision which affirmed the cancellation of the Fishpond Lease Agreement No. 24-25. with only eight (8) hectares considered to be productive. 1989. 1975 to February 19. 1979 (P168. and (c) the trial court committed grave error and injustice in not dismissing petitioner's complaint and in ordering respondent to pay petitioner the amounts of P168. and similarly. who was acknowledged to be in possession of the subject property consisting of five ponds at the time of the issuance of the aforesaid writs. 5. Rollo). he filed with the appellate court a motion for execution pending appeal.000. corresponding to 60% to 70% was developed). for failure to file brief. 1979 to March 20. On May 21. Escudero III.000. 2. the dispositive portion of which reads as follows: WHEREFORE. 1989. The petition before us hinges on the argument that the Court of Appeals entertained evidence and/or other matters not duly covered or taken up in the trial of Civil Case No. Meanwhile. Verily. petitioner mentions that on December 11. In the subject July 31. 3090 on the following grounds: (1) Section 5(k) of Fisheries Administrative Order (FAO) No. series of 1979. Ordering defendants to jointly pay plaintiff the rentals of the fishpond area in question at the reasonable rate of P25. Declaring the Waiver of All Rights.00 per annum constituting reasonable rentals from February 19. upholding the January 28.00 covering the period of four years from February 19. However. IN VIEW OF ALL THE FOREGOING. Elma.000. 2085 and CA-G. the lessee shall not sublet or enter into a sub-lease contract over the area or portion covered by the fishpond lease agreement. As a last note.46. claiming that the Sheriff’s Return of Service dated June 6. Let us first examine the premise and basis of the aforesaid July 31. private respondent presented a photostat copy of the subject July 31. 1985 Escudero Order.. 3090 issued to petitioner and forfeited in favor of the government the improvements thereof. 1975 (hence the sharing of the net harvest should not commence on said date). the Office of the President.000. alleging that the trial court has not yet issued the corresponding writ of preliminary mandatory injunction to restore private respondent to the possession of the subject fishpond area. 125. should remain in the possession thereof until further notice by the court. the subject decision stated that it mainly deals with the validity of the cancellation by the Ministry of Agriculture and Food of petitioner's Fishpond Lease . CV No.00 as attorney's fees. 1980 to January 2. private respondent filed with the appellate court an "Ex-Parte Urgent Motion for Issuance of Writ of Preliminary Mandatory Injunction". The appellate court thus held that all these violations are recognized grounds for the termination and cancellation of a fishpond lease agreement under Section 9 of the FAO No.000. (pp.00 as petitioner's share covering the period beginning February 19. P25. Later. 1991 stated that "the restoration to and/or placement of plaintiff Sañado thereof on said fishpond area in controversy x x x. Petitioner stresses that it was at this particular stage of the proceedings that the subject July 31. 1985 cancelling Fishpond Lease Agreement No. 1989 decision rendered by the Office of the President in relation to Civil Case No. 1989 Malacañang decision was initially mentioned by private respondent who thereby argued that the trial court failed to consider that prior to the issuance of the writ of execution. 3090 and forfeiting the improvements thereon in favor of the government. In this light. As mentioned earlier. and ruled that the area with the improvements shall be disposed of in accordance with Presidential Decree No. 1989 decision of the Office of the President.R. the trial court itself ordered the immediate restoration of possession of the subject fishpond area to herein private respondent. Ordering defendants jointly and severally pay plaintiff the sum of P100. private respondent filed a petition for relief from judgment and or execution which resulted in an order dated June 7. 1979. 1989 decision rendered by the Office of the President through Deputy Executive Secretary Magdangal B. 1980 and from March 21. 19. the trial court rendered its decision in Civil Case No. the reasonable rental of the fishpond area (P25. Interests and Participations Over a Fishpond Area (Part) (Exhibit "E") executed by defendant Nepomuceno in favor of defendant Edgar Chu as null and void." Thereafter.000. and 6. 1990.00). petitioner filed another motion for issuance of writ of execution.00 per annum) from February 20. and (2) failure of petitioner to comply with the development requirements. as well as attorney's fees (P100. 1979 up to the time the fishpond area shall have been restored to petitioner. 2085. 2085. A perusal thereof reveals that it resolved the appeal filed by petitioner and the Samahang Kabuhayan ng Barangay Monching from the order of the then Minister of Agriculture and Food. dismissed petitioner's appeal and affirmed the cancellation of the subject Fishpond Lease Agreement No. To pay the costs. such that private respondent.000.

. from the Escudero Order of January 25. 1989 did not attain finality. p. 3090 for violation of the terms thereof and/or the fisheries rules. CV No. the herein appeal of Sañado. For to award possession to petitioner is futile since he has lost the fishpond license. And such task belongs to the administrative body which has jurisdiction over the matter . what more if the judgment has not yet attained finality? It is thus plain in the case at bar that the July 31. 315 SCRA 461 [1999]). upon which a decision is to be made and rights and liabilities determined (De Leon. such as the President. This policy is specially applicable in the grant of licenses. petitioner also notes that the decision of the Office of the President is dated July 31.. 1989 decision was rendered while Civil Case No. 2085 and CA-G. considering its patent implications in the result of both Civil Case No. the subject July 31. 23165.the Ministry of Agriculture and Food. Guiao (315 SCRA 396 [1997]) where we held that judgment is not confined to what appears on the face of the decision.. Further. its principal officers. Verily. 24. Judicial notice must be taken of the organization of the Executive Department. or in suspending or revoking. or the approval. the July 31. For example.R. 143-144). as where certain facts and circumstances justifying or requiring such modification or alteration transpired after the judgment has become final and executory (David vs. plaintiff-appellee. What is the nature of the July 31. 1993 ed. his powers and duties (Francisco. The lease agreement having been cancelled. Gallo. The only exception is when there is a clear showing of capricious and whimsical exercise of judgment or grave abuse of discretion. Accordingly. It is not a vested right given by the government but a privilege with corresponding obligations and is subject to governmental regulation.) . 1989 decision of the Office of the President which can hardly be described as an unrelated matter. If the court could modify or alter a judgment even after the same has become executory whenever circumstances transpire rendering its decision unjust and inequitable. The cancellation or revocation of petitioner’s license necessarily eliminated his right to possess the same since the new licensee would then be the one to enjoy this right. permits. rejection. WHEREFORE. Hence.Agreement No. ROMAN MENESES Y MARIN. 1989 decision a foreign matter which was not raised in the court below and hence should not have been treated by the Court of Appeals with legal force and effect. and due process dictate that parties cannot raise for the first time on appeal issues which they could have raised but never did during the trial (Reburiano vs. 1985 Order being considered in force and effect. . 1985 stands unchallenged. True. a license. what is being enforced is Presidential Decree No.D. vs. By analogy. 301 SCRA 342 [1999]). 704). justice. 2 Canal Zone 170). the July 31. 3090 of plaintiff-appellee which was affirmed on appeal by the Office of the President.P. 1989 decision before the appellate court had caused no undue surprise upon petitioner who. 1989. 1996 ed. P. 704 which consolidated and revised all laws and decrees affecting fishing and fisheries. we repeat. 2085 was pending appeal. 1989 decision whi ch would easily lose its ―teeth‖ or force if petitioner were restored in possession.which is to enforce the law. JJ. private respondent could have not been expected to present the July 31. and leases. petitioner considers the July 31. and which cancellation has been sustained by the Office of the President? Petitioner must remember the essence of the grant of a license. Court of Appeals. 1985 remains the only obstacle. 3090. if petitioner disagrees with the decision of the Office of the President. The right to possess the subject fishpond area is necessarily included in the decision. the July 31. which we find absent in the case at bar. Panganiban. 1989 Malacañang decision and what is its effect on the resolution of Civil Case No. Court of Appeals.R. elected or appointed.R No. In other words. In addition. Further. 316 SCRA 710 [1999]) and when it becomes imperative in the higher interest of justice or when supervening events warrant it (People vs. To reiterate. was the one who filed the appeal. challenging the January 28. However. it appearing that the defeated party’s claim to the possession thereof is based on his claim of ownership. to allow petitioner to possess the subject area is to run counter to the execution and enforcement of the July 31. In this instance. 1998] KAPUNAN. For how could the appellate court award possession to the very same party whose license has been cancelled by the executive or administrative officer tasked to exercise licensing power as regards the development of fishpond areas. No. The policy of the courts as regards such factual findings is not to interfere with actions of the executive branch on administrative matters addressed to the sound discretion of government agencies. or certificate of public convenience and necessity is administrative or quasi-judicial. franchise. But one thing is for sure. Such enforcement must be true to the policy behind such laws which is "to accelerate and promote the integrated development of the fishery industry and to keep the fishery resources of the country in optimum productive condition through proper conservation and protection" (Section 2. pp. Escudero III cancelling Fishpond Lease Agreement No. are definitely solid and logical grounds for the cancellation of one's license. the Court of Appeals correctly held -- (p. 37 SCRA 745 [1971]). the issue of whether or not petitioner is still entitled to possession of the subject fishpond area is underpinned by an ascertainment of facts. CV No. 111742. It was appealed within the reglementary period. such fact is of no moment considering that said decision of the trial court did not attain finality and was seasonably appealed. the July 31. where the ownership of a parcel of land is decreed in the judgment. 2958) on the subject fishpond area. J. The rendition of the subject July 31. 1989 decision of the Office of the President is explicitly an official act of and an exercise of quasi-judicial power by the Executive Department headed by the highest officer of the land. 1989 decision of the Office of the President is a substantial supervening event which drastically changed the circumstances of the parties to the subject fishpond lease agreement. Administrative Law: Text and Cases. Vitug. 1989. the instant petition is hereby DENIED for lack of merit. . 23165 is hereby AFFIRMED. Rollo. Rules of fair play. Mena. THE PEOPLE 0F THE PHILIPPINES. 31. In this regard. .. concur. 1989 decision was rendered a few days after the trial court handed down its decision ordering herein petitioner to be restored to the possession of the subject fishpond area. The reasons given by the Office of the President in dismissing petitioner's appeal are quite clear. He knew about the appeal since he was precisely the one who filed it. 1989 decision stated: The Escudero Order of May 14. As such. 1985 order of Minister Escudero which gave private respondent priority in applying for the subject area and which considered respondent's improvements thereon as not forfeited in favor of the government. the trial court's decision of July 19. March 26. 1992 decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. is not confined to the validity of the cancellation by the Ministry of Agriculture and Food of petitioner’s Fishpond Lease Agreement No. petitioner argues that the subject decision of the Office of the President was merely incidental to the propriety or impropriety of the issuance of a writ of preliminary mandatory injunction to restore private respondent to the possession of the fishpond area after a writ of execution was issued by the trial court in favor of petitioner. It thus squarely falls under matters relative to the executive department which courts are mandatorily tasked to take judicial notice of under Section 1. possession of the fishpond area covered by the lease agreement cannot be returned to plaintiff-appellee even if the waiver of rights.Evidence [Rules 128-134]. permit. Case No. Significantly. Rule 129 of the Rules of Court. and participation is held null and void . to the said May 14. Transferring or subletting the fishpond granted to a licensee without the consent or approval of the administrative body concerned. It is thus proper to consider the same a supervening event the existence of which cannot just be disregarded by the appellate court. 2085 was rendered June 19. as well as the failure to develop the area required by the fisheries rules. whereas the decision of Civil Case No. 1989 decision during the trial because it was obviously not yet extant during that time. he should have elevated the matter by petition for review before the Court of Appeals for the latter's exercise of judicial review. In point is our ruling in Baluyot vs. the delivery of the possession of the land should be considered included in the decision. the presentation of the July 31. 1989 decision. 50. [G. Withal. (p. citing Canal Zone vs. Understandably. Rollo. on the administrative level. et al. The issue (on waiver of rights and interests and participation by respondent) is rendered moot and academic by the order of then MAF Minister Salvador H. The act is not purely administrative but quasi-judicial or adjudicatory since it is dependent upon the ascertainment of facts by the administrative agency. Such respect is based on the time-honored doctrine of separation of powers and on the fact that these bodies are considered co-equal and coordinate rank as courts. As such. petitioner knew that there was a pending administrative case (O. SO ORDERED. Gonzaga-Reyes. to restore petitioner to the possession of the fishpond area is to totally disregard the July 31. accused-appellant. Hence. petitioner is not assailing the May 14. and that a decision in Civil Case No. or revocation of applications therefor (Manuel vs. 2085? The action of an administrative agency in granting or denying. . but also covers those necessarily included therein or necessary thereto.: . 1989 Malacañang decision is premised on the essential function of the executive department . 1985 order of then Minister Escudero which cancelled Fishpond Lease Agreement No. Nowhere in the record do we find such action on petitioner's part. 1989 decision. and Sandoval-Gutierrez. 2085 which is a possessory action has hardly any bearing in the resolution of the aforestated appeal. Villena. interests. The September 11. as pointed out in the July 31.) In addition. 3090 for violation of the terms thereof and/or fisheries rules.

with evident premeditation and treachery. without a warrant after being implicated in the crime by his wife. Manila.[2] The prosecution presented the following witnesses: Christopher R. with several stab wounds. Christopher was again brought to the precinct where. 1991. The arrest was based on the report of Angelina Victoria. which reads: That on or about December 15. raising reasonable doubt in the mind of the Court as to appellant’s culpability. as stated in his Autopsy Report. Tuazon Street. and Christopher used to live with him and his wife Angelina. in the City of Manila. decisive of the success or failure of the [1] prosecution. he arrested appellant. before the crack of dawn. Tondo. but that at the police station. On cross-examination. On the day of the crime. Christopher cried. 2. Appellant even sent his nephew Christopher to school. Manila called the precinct informing him that Cesar Victoria was found stabbed to death. thus: WHEREFORE. Roman Meneses. Appellant Roman Meneses was charged with the murder of Cesar Victoria. appellant alleged that he was in San Isidro. when Cesar was stabbed after he (Cesar) got out of prison. at around three o’clock. what (sic) did you found (sic) at the body of the victim? A . the victim was not lying down when stabbed. Christopher could not identify nor describe the attacker. after he had a misunderstanding with Angelina. on the night of December 14. With three policemen. the trial found appellant guilty. 1991. Christopher’s other siblings lived elsewhere in Tondo and his mother was living in Quezon. arriving there at around three o’clock in the morning. 1991. SPO3 Jaime Mendoza. in an Information dated December 27. assault and use personal violence upon one CESAR VICTORIA y FERNANDEZ. and had been there since the tenth or eleventh of that month. On redirect examination however. Appellant testified that the victim. Subject of the Court’s scrutiny in the instant criminal case is the credibility of a child’s alleged eyewitness account on which the appellant’s conviction by the trial court was solely anchored. Mendoza said that Christopher identified the assailant as appellant. who implicated appellant in the crime. during a confrontation with appellant. 1991. Gonzales and his companions brought appellant to Police Station No. The room was connected by a divider with a door to a house owned by the Spouses Ard iete. Christopher Victoria. He further testified that he was awakened from sleep and saw his father being stabbed in the heart with a ―veinte nueve. III ON THE ASSUMPTION THAT APPELLANT IS GUILTY. Victoria testified that he witnessed the stabbing of his father. and he is hereby sentenced with the penalty of Reclusion Perpetua. Tondo. After announcing that they were policemen and that appellant was being arrested as the suspect in the stabbing of Cesar Victoria. 1991. thereby inflicting upon the said CESAR VICTORIA y FERNANDEZ mortal wounds which were the direct and immediate cause of his death immediately. two of which were fatal. SPO3 Mendoza testified thus: Q . appellant yielded a balisong. lying on a wooden bed. unlawfully and feloniously. The policemen saw the victim’s bloodied body. Zone 9. 1993. 1991. he never admitted though to killing Cesar Victoria. in most cases. 1324. Christopher R. The policemen found appellant at the place pointed to by Angelina. thirty-three year old Cesar Victoria was stabbed to death while sleeping by his seven-year old son Christopher in a rented makeshift room in Tondo. Mendoza and the policemen brought Christopher to the precinct where his statement was taken. the said accused. which was a flower box at the corner of Tuazon and Mithi Streets. Pampanga. did then and there willfully.[5] Medico-Legal Officer Florante P. was ―cardio-respiratory arrest due to shock and hemorrhage secondary to sta b wounds. appellant assigns to the trial court the following errors: I THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN NOT GIVING EXCULPATORY WEIGHT TO THE EVIDENCE ADDUCED BY THE DEFENSE.You said you found the body of the victim.‖[12] such as in the instant case. appellant’s wife. He was brought to the police station where he was mauled by policemen. Gonzales stated that he and his companions merely ―invited‖ appellant to go with them to the police station for investigation. At around three o’clock in the early morning of December 15.000. Christopher identified appellant as the person who stabbed his father.[13] Nowhere in the description of the crime scene by witness SPO3 Mendoza in his testimony was it established that there was light or illumination of any sort by which Christopher could see the attacker.[6] He opined that based on the direction of the stab wounds. THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN CONVICTING HIM OF MURDER INSTEAD OF HOMICIDE ONLY. Mendoza described the scene as a makeshift room about three by five square meters. In fact. II THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN CONVICTING APPELLANT OF THE CRIME CHARGED NOTWITHSTANDING THE FAILURE OF THE PROSECUTION TO PROVE HIS GUILT BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT.The makeshift room which was adjacent to the house. who identified appellant as the one who he allegedly saw stab his father.We found the body of the victim on adjacent makeshift of the No. . he went to his father’s rented makeshift room to sleep after he (Christopher) was whipped by his brother. Frisked. He testified in court that the cause of death of the victim. who was his brother-in-law. Tondo. Gonzales testified that at about two o’clock in the morning of December 25. Appellant was later transferred to the Homicide Section. 1991.‖ and that the victim sustained five external injuries. the victim’s landlord. it is still quite dark and that daylight comes rather late in this time of year. but that the child said he could identify him because he knew his face. the victim’s sister.[10] The issue in the instant case is credibility. He testified that while he lived with his Kuya Odeng on Kasipagan Street.Eyewitness identification is vital evidence and. The accused is hereby ordered to indemnify and pay the heirs of the victim Cesar Victoria the sum of P50.It was owned by Cesar Victoria and his son Christopher. He interposed the defense of denial and alibi. a police investigator of the Western Police District testified that on December 15. Appellant also denied that there was animosity between him and his brother-in-law. but could have been standing or sitting when stabbed by the attacker who could have also been standing. Manila. appellant verbally admitted to stabbing Cesar Victoria. that at around three in the morning during the Christmas season.[3] After the appellant was arrested and turned over to the investigators on December 26.00 as [9] damages sustained by them on account of the victim’s death. Mexico. The judgment of appellant’s conviction is anchored entirely on the testimony of the single eyewitness. He further testified that he was arrested on December 24. SPO3 Eduardo Gonzales and Medico-Legal Officer Florante Baltazar. in their house at A. It was established that the crime took place in the wee hours of the morning. Baltazar of the Philippine National Police Crime Laboratory conducted the autopsy on the victim. Q . appellant even brought him to the hospital and paid for his medical [8] expenses. whose house of that makeshift was adjacent? A . In a Decision dated July 26. Mendoza immediately went to the crime scene.[4] SPO3 Eduardo C. a kagawad of Barangay 123. 1991. Mendoza testified that when he questioned Christopher. In this appeal. judgment is hereby rendered convicting the accused of the crime of Murder. Philippines. his brother-in-law. Victoria.[11] The court can take judicial notice of the ―laws of nature.‖ After the assailant ran away. SPO3 Jaime Mendoza. who was then in the house. We find that the trustworthiness of the identification of appellant by Christopher is dubious. attack. with intent to kill.[7] The lone witness for the defense was the appellant himself. by then and there stabbing the latter with a fan knife (balisong) on the different parts of his body.

sir. and talking to Christopher Victoria who can identify the suspect. Q .When you responded to the scene of the crime. he can identify. ATTY. Q . sir.Part of the house. much less identify the knife used. and experience. Q .‖ The prosecution failed to paint a crystal-clear picture of the environ by which Christopher could have made an accurate and reliable identification of the attacker. only division separate. thus: Q .[17] This inconsistency in the testimony of SPO3 Mendoza not only tolls on his credibility as well as the credibility of his testimony.The son of the victim said that he can identified (sic) the suspect.Yes.Because that portion.[16] During his direct and cross-examination. Q .Did you asked (sic) him if he can identify? A . the son of the victim was not able to tell you who the suspect was? A . but the Court merely A . Your Honor. sir. It is highly improbable that a young boy.He knows the face of the suspect.It was occupied intended for the victim Cesar Victoria and his son. SPO3 Mendoza testified thus: Q . COURT: QDid you talked (sic) to the son of the victim? Q .Yes. there was a door before you can get inside.He can’t tell the description of the suspect but he insist (sic) that if he can see him again. sir.Only a division within that house. FISCAL SULLA: Q . Christopher’s testimony being improbable.How wide? A .Now who occupied the room adjacent to the room occupied by the victim? A .The main door going to the house. sir. if he knows him at that time? A . what that makeshift was for? A . Because he openly sees the face. Roman Meneses. is not credible. however.He told me he can remember the suspect whenever he sees him again. Your Honor. xxx Q . where did you see this couple? A .You said you interviewed a couple named Ardiete.Yes. did you asked [sic] him why he can identify the suspect? A . [15] observation.Where was the son of the victim when you arrived? A .Did you ask him the name of the suspect. .Inside the house. Q . nor the son tell you that they saw the killing? A . Q .What is the name? A . as a ―veinte nueve.Neither the wife nor the husband [referring to the spouses Ardiete.Yes.Yes.What did he say? A .Yes.‖ We now consider the identification itself. Q .You said that the makeshift was adjacent to the house.Then he can identify him? A .Did you come to know. xxx.Roman Meneses.Yes. sir.Yes. except its conformity to our knowledge. there was a door. does the Court understand from you that the makeshift was attach to the house? A .So the place where you found the victim is a place which can be used for living purposes? A .He can’t tell the name. sir. Evidence is credible when it is ―such as the common experience of mankind can approve as probable under the circumstances. Q . Q .How far is that house to the house of the victim? A .Q . as Christopher did. not inconsequential. Q . Q . Significantly. they actually rented the space. We have no test of the truth of human testimony. Q .[14] The crime took place in a makeshift room measuring about three by five square meters. Your Honor. sir.More or less about three meters or five meters. in the testimony of SPO3 Mendoza regarding Christopher’s identification of appellant. COURT: Q .What did he tell you? A . SPO3 Mendoza asserted that Christopher could not name his father’s attacker nor give a description. SARMIENTO: Q . Q . Q . While the room had a door.And did you ask him why he can remember the face? A . veracity and reliability of the alleged identification itself.He remember [sic] the face. in his re-direct examination he said that Christopher mentioned categorically appellant’s name. casts doubt on the trustworthiness.Did you asked [sic] the son what is the name of his uncle? A .So at the time that you were there. Q . sir.And what did he tell you? A .Did he tell you the description of the suspect? A .How did you come to that conclusion? A .Is there an opening on it? A . could identify the attacker. there was no mention of a window which could have allowed entry of some kind of light from the outside.How big is that room more or less? A .Yes. We note a glaring discrepancy. just roused from sleep and his eyes adjusting to the unlit room. sir. this inconsistency was noted by the trial court with vexation.Inside the house. sice (sic) he was his uncle. Q . but more significantly.The spouses Ardiete.

it is submitted. but had not accused him when making her original complaint to the police. On the state of this record. at the time of the incident. 1991 xxx Q . Although she knew the defendant prior to her husband’s death. Q . We further find objectionable Christopher’s identification of appellant during a ―show-up‖ at the police station. the victim’s widow identified the defendant prior to her husband’s killers. she testified that it came to her mind that he assault. Q . and on the same day. he failed to point to appellant as the attacker when questioned by [20] the police immediately after the incident.[19] Indeed.The eye witness Your Honor. in any event. is not satisfactorily explained. In an Idaho prosecution for rape. she testified that she had not recognized him during the commission of the crime.We make confrontation between the suspect and him. Christopher was at that time coherent and answering clearly questions from the police. thus: When a person has been the victim of a crime committed by a friend.PO Eddie Gonzales sir. We realize…. It was after he left. that: If we give credence to their testimony. no mention was made regarding an identification made by Christopher when questioned immediately after the crime. it appears that they were able to and did observe fully the fact and general appearance of one of the three alleged robbers who was identified by them 17 months later as the defendant ….When was he arrested? A . it usually produces that reasonable doubt which causes a jury to acquit. That the issue is one of credibility and that. who was sleeping beside the latter during the commission of the crime when interviewed stated that he was awakened while his father was being stabbed by suspect. 8 years old. no conviction should occur or should be allowed to stand in the absence of independent and persuasive evidence of the defendant’s guilt.. where was the suspect when he was identified by the witness? A . Q . dictates that when this danger signal is present in a case. A conviction for murder in the first degree was reversed because the trial judge had failed to charge the jury that they should consider those facts in determining the accuracy of the identification. such issued is for the trier of the facts. From SPO3 Mendoza’s testimony. thus: Q . As an explanation. even though he was previously known to her. or that her purse had been snatched by the grocer’s delivery boy.e. The occasional failure of a complainant to do this is a danger signal of which the courts have sometimes taken note. 1991. who for some time he was staying with. if he is able to do so. and asked none other than the defendant to wait with her – a course of action which was commented upon by the appellate court which reversed the conviction on grounds which included the insufficiency of the evidence of identification. Wall in his work on eyewitness identification expound on the danger signals which a trial court judge and the appellate courts should watch out for when considering identifications in criminal cases.In what particular place inside your office? . And in a recent New York robbery prosecution. Even in the Advance Information prepared by SPO3 Mendoza on December 15. Q . In a New York murder prosecution. and admitted also that she had told the coroner that she had never before seen her husband’s murderers. ―I made confrontation between them.The eye witness positively identified the suspect as the one who stabbed the victim.Who was able to arrest the suspect? A . Common sense. Case to be further investigated and follow-up to determine the motive behind the knife-slaying and efforts will be exerted to establish the identity of suspect. i. for he had a veil covering his face. it taxes the credibility of Christopher’s testimony that while he knew appellant prior to the crime. COURT: Who identified? A . it is reasonable to expect that they would have given this information promptly to the police….December 25. if. The conviction was reversed on appeal.And what did you do when you invited the eye witness? A . But once the victim decides to make a criminal complaint. and decides to make a complaint to the police. stating that the identification of appellant by Christopher during the subsequent confrontation rendered such inconsistency unimportant.Exactly. in any event. then at least the identity) of the person whom they should arrest.Where? A . to pass along to the police within a reasonable time information which would have led them to identify the defendant as one of the robbers. a new trial should be had in the interests of justice. and that. because when the point actually arises in a case. Q . however. to name or designate the perpetrator of the crime immediately. Of course. then he will almost invariably name or designate the perpetrator of the crime immediately. Mendoza testified on the circumstances surrounding the ―confrontation‖ between Christopher and appellant. they had recognized the particular individual as one whom they knew or as resembling one with whom they were acquainted. and the failure of the witness or complainant to do what would normally be done. we have concluded that the finding of the jury as to the guilt of the [18] defendant… is contrary to the weight of the evidence. It may also be of some significance that when a jury convicts despite such a glaring weakness in the identification. being his uncle.‖ referring to Christopher and appellant SPO3. for one reason or another. the complainant was a young married woman who had known the defendant prior to the commission of the alleged crime. These four cases should suffice to illustrate how the courts react to this danger signal on the rather rare occasions when it is in the record before them.Right after the suspect was arrested. with respect to the identifying witnesses. The victim would normally tell the police that he had been hit by John Smith. son of victim. The prosecution did not endeavor to explain Christopher’s failure to name the attacker at the time he was questioned immediately after the crime. Q . the complaining witness identified the defendant at the trial. she admitted that she had not named him to the police on the night of the crime. even though they had known him previously. the court stating. for example.And what did you do when you informed about this? A . she became afraid to stay alone at home while waiting for her husband to return. or other person previously familiar to him. As testified to by SPO3 Mendoza. generally speaking. on the whole record. She identified him at the trial.And then in the confrontation between the suspect and the eye witness. it is to be expected that he would immediately inform them of the name (or it that be unknown. to recognized the defendant at the time of the robbery or. Certainly. there was no plausible explanation for the failure of the two women. Mendoza wrote: CHRISTOPHER VICTORIA. The ensuing conviction was reversed on the ground that he evidence of identification was insufficient. whom he claimed he can identify if he can see him again. the son of the victim. or one of them.I invited again the eye witness. Here. some crimes are never reported. however. Those occasions are rare. but admitted that she had not recognized him during the assault. it is usually in the type of case that stirs up the greatest emotions – sex crimes and crimes of violence. since he was the son of an acquaintance of one of them.Inside the office. what happened? A .When was that? A . In an Iowa prosecution for assault with intent to commit rape. it was brought out that the two women who had identified the defendant at the trial had not immediately named him to the police. acquaintance.glossed over the same. xxx FISCAL SULLA: Q . relative.Inside the room sir.

‖[27] From Mendoza’s testimony we can gather that appellant was presented as the suspect in the crime to Christopher inside Mendoza’s office in the Homicide Section of the police station. 432 US 98 (1977). 1968 ed.Crime against person.And when the suspect was turned-over to your office. An NBI agent improperly suggested to them petitioner’s person. Q . COURT: Did you tell something. the circumstances pointed out by the trial court plants in mind the plausibility that appellant’s wife Angelina could h ave coached the young impressionable Christopher.[26] is seriously flawed. sir. what did the son tell you? A .He pin-pointed the suspect. Q . his aunt Angelina.About three meters. how far is your office to the detention cell? A .No.[23] xxx. We stated thus: x x x the mode of identification other than an identification parade is a show-up. Q . Jr.When did the confrontation exactly took (sic) place? [22] . the accused therein was pointed to by the alleged eyewitnesses after an NBI agent first pointed him out to them. it constitutes the most grossly suggestive identification procedure now or ever used by the police (See Louisell. he told me that he saw him in the room they rented at Alinia.You said that the suspect was inside the jail. (3) the accuracy of any prior description given by the witness. sir. Q . homicide. John.He told me he can. Q . who were there? A . did you asked (sic) did you tell anything to the son before the confrontation? A . (4) the level of certainty demonstrated by the witness at the identification. COURT: What did the son told (sic) you? A . Q . 346) Indeed. what did you do? A . xxx [21] A . or later in the detention cell the boy was made to approach. Q . after I made a confrontation between the son of the victim and the suspect. Rather than reinforce the identification.Did you point them the suspect? A . and Waltz.Yes. The test lists three factors to consider: x x x (1) the witness’ opportunity to view the criminal at the time of the crime. Del Carmen.[25] the Court stated that an identification of the accused during a ―show-up‖ or where the suspect alone is brought face to face with the witness for identification. what did you do? A .Yes. Q .Together with Angelina? xxx Q . and he pinpointed to me that the suspect was really the one. A . 1263) In the Tuason case.Immediately during my investigation I made a confrontation with the suspect and the victim. the presentation of a single suspect to a witness for purposes of identification. Wall.‖[28] Even applying the totality of circumstances test set in People v.I investigated again. 409 US 188 (1973).How about Angelina? A .[29] formulated and used by courts in resolving the admissibility and reliability of out-of-court identifications.Yes. 3rd Edition.Yes. Kaplan. Q . Jon R. Together with its aggravated forms.So the suspect was turn-over (sic) over to you? A .What happened when they arrived.Was there confrontation between the suspect and the son together with Angelina? A .A . were (sic) he there? A . (2) the witness’ degree of attention at that time. The Court said that ―[the eyewitnesses’] identification of [petitioner] from a [subsequent] li ne-up at the NBI was not spontaneous and independent.. during a first encounter in the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) headquarters. when you made the investigation in your office.He is Roman Meneses.How about the son of the victim. Teehankee. David W.I just saw him (there) when I arrive (sic). Manson v.She did not. COURT: Did you asked (sic) him where did he saw (sic) the person pointed to? A . sir. when the accused was arrested and you were informed about it. Criminal Procedure. Cases and Materials on Evidence. These circumstances are: Q . Q .And from that time how long did it take? When they arrive (sic).. COURT: And during the confrontation. p. Brathwaite. Q . sir.I took immediately the statement of the son of the victim.What happened during the confrontation? A . (5) the length of time between the crime and the identification.Day after December 25.So. Q . we cannot discount the angle that young Christopher was influenced by prior prompting or manipulation by an adult.And after he told you he can. Court of Appeals.When was that? A . While Mendoza did not literally point to appellant as in the Tuason case.[24] In Tuason v. p.I made confrontation between them. (6) the suggestiveness of the identification process. how long (did) this Christopher Victoria identify the suspect? A .The son of the victim.Son of the victim alone? A . (See Neil v.. equally pervasive in the ―confrontation‖ in the instant case is what Wigmore calls ―the suggestion of guilty identity. Eyewitness Identification in Criminal Cases. and.I let the son of the victim to go (sic) nearer the detention cell. 1992. Q .Who pin-pointed the suspect? A .The night shift in charge. Q . we must hold the identification of appellant by Christopher to be seriously flawed. Law and Practice.. Biggers.

if it relates to the acts or omissions of a lower court or of a corporation. Costs de oficio. concur.-G. respondents. National Capital Judicial Region. that he was the one who killed the victim. 2000 Order of the appellate court. and Purisima. 2000 or allegedly on the 60th day from their receipt of the March 23. Another was the resentment of the accused against his brother-in-law-victim brought about by the latter’s intervention in that serious quarrel between him and his wife. as represented by Lydia Co Hao and Lilibeth Manlugon v. it was not even shown that appellant’s supposed admissions of guilt were made [33] with benefit of counsel.[36] We must rule that the prosecution failed to so discharge its burden. Petitioners filed a petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals on June 7. Romero. The appellant however during the trial denied having made such verbal admissions of guilt. Here. The mere assertion by a police office that after an accused was informed of his constitutional right to remain silent and to counsel he readily admitted his guilt. and that 3. (Chairman). J. it holding that: Per records. he was arrested. who was his wife Angelina’s brother.. If it involves the acts or omissions of a quasi-judicial agency. – The petition may be filed not later than sixty (60) days from notice of the judgment. 91-101878 convicting appellant ROMAN MENESES y MARIN is REVERSED and appellant is ACQUITTED of the crime charged on the ground of reasonable doubt. Lolita O.. Petitioners thereupon filed (on July 10.A. order. It may also be filed in the Court of Appeals whether or not the same is in aid of its jurisdiction. the petition must be denied due course. without credible positive identification. on motion of private respondent.R. The People points out that appellant had verbally admitted having committed the crime at the time of his arrest [31] and later during the conduct of the investigation. their complaint. it appears that petitioners had only until May 29. whether such motion is required or not. and envy proceeding from Angelina’s giving financial support to the victim may [30] constitute motive. She was also with the boy when he was made to identify appellant during the ―confrontation. It is conceded that appellant’s defense of alibi is weak. motive alone. vs. 2000 within which to file the Petition for Certiorari considering the following: 1. the aggrieved party may file the petition within the remaining period. 1999 Order on November 17. for being belatedly filed. 2000. SP No. the period herein fixed shall be interrupted. Petitioners filed a motion for reconsideration of the October 20. the petition shall be filed in and cognizable only by the Court of Appeals. No. Siena Realty Corporation. HON. just the same the petition fails. 2000 Order denying their motion for reconsideration on April 8. reckoned from notice of such denial. Thus. When and where petition filed. the instant petition is hereby DISMISSED. – The petition shall be filed not later than sixty (60) days from notice of the judgment. 2000. In the meantime. order or resolution. Since the petition attributes grave abuse of discretion on the part of the Court of Appeals in the issuance of subject resolution. Rule 65 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure: SECTION 4. however. and the COURT OF APPEALS. 59096.J. (Emphasis and underscoring supplied) The amendment to Sec. does not make the supposed confession admissible against [32] the purported confessant. Angelina was the one who went to the police to implicate appellant in the crime and who directed the police to where he could be found.M. If the petitioner had filed a motion for new trial or reconsideration after notice of said judgment. Hon.First. 2000. the same would not be admissible in evidence against him because the constitutional preconditions for its admission were not complied with. The settled rule however is that conviction should rest on the strength of the prosecution and not on the weakness of the defense. . The Court of Appeals. 145169 May 13. WHEREFORE. No extension of time shall be granted except for the most compelling reason and in no case to exceed fifteen (15) days . Petitioners received a copy of the October 20. If the motion is denied. DECISION CARPIO MORALES. 4. for being filed out of time. was the insistence of [appellant’s] wife as testified by the accused himself. SO ORDERED. as Presiding Judge of the RTC of Manila.R. as Presiding Judge of Br. Petitioners received a copy of the March 23. by Resolution of June 20. but which shall not be less than five (5) days in any event. officer or person. thus. cannot be a basis for conviction. 00-2-03-SC (Reglamentary Period to File Petitions for Certiorari and Petition for Review on Certiorari) a Resolution dated August 1. Branch 34 in Criminal Case No. the Decision dated July 26. Rule 65. and unless otherwise provided by law or these Rules. this Court issued in A. Where petition filed. Thirdly. what should have been filed was one for certiorari under Rule 65. Branch 44. the sixty (60) day period shall be counted from notice of the denial of the said motion. 2000 or nine (9) days late. She later herded Christopher to the police station for the boy to give his statement. in view of the foregoing. petitioner.: Challenged via petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the 1997 Revised Rules of Court is the September 13. Quite revealingly. C. 2000 approving the amendment to the following provision of Section 4.[35] The onus is on the prosecution to prove the accused guilty beyond reasonable doubt. SPECIAL 13th DIVISION. and Anita Co Ng in trust for Rockefeller Ng. board. especially when we consider that per SPO3 Mendoza’s testimony. 44 of the RTC of Manila. 1999. ANITA CO NG in trust for ROCKEFELLER NG. Gal-lang. No. dismissed petitioner’s petition for certiorari. The instant petition was filed on June 7. order or resolution. and was pointed to by her as the assailant. 2000) a motion for reconsideration2 of the above-said June 20. 2. And while the above circumstances. Narvasa. Granting arguendo that appellant indeed made such verbal admissions.‖ We see Angelina’s actuations as suspect. the supposed resentment of appellant against the victim. 1 G. JJ. particularly. which took effect on September 1. 1999. reads: SECTION 4. as represented by LYDIA CO HAO and LILIBETH MANLUGON. In case a motion for reconsideration or new trial is timely filed. [34] But even if technicality were set aside. 1993 of the Regional Trial Court of Manila. 2000 Resolution of the Court of Appeals in C. that the accused no doubt disliked the financial support and subsistence being given by his wife to the victim. 1999 Order denying their [counsel’s] Notice of Withdrawal [and likewise denying petitioners’ Motion for Reconsideration of the Order dismissing their complaint] on November 8. in view of the constitutional presumption of the innocence of the accused. 2004 SIENA REALTY CORPORATION. in the Regional Trial Court exercising jurisdiction over the territorial area as defined by the Supreme Court. the boy could not simply name the attacker. 2000 Order of Branch 44 of the Manila Regional Trial Court denying their motion for Reconsideration of said court’s Order dismissing. The Court orders his RELEASE from commitment unless he is held for some other legal cause or ground. LOLITA GAL-LANG. resolution sought to be assailed in the Supreme Court or. On this score alone. when he questioned Christopher immediately after the crime.

the admiralty and maritime courts of the world and their seals. the political constitution and history of the Philippines. RULE 65 OF THE 1997 RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE. 1133. The witnesses testified that Josefa Gacot was married to Vicente Dantic. Community Environment and Natural Resources Officer (CENRO) of Puerto Princesa City while the claimant appeared without counsel. which provides as follows: respondent’s allegation that the matter was no longer pending and undetermined. Despite this declaration however. 1998. Sr. No extension of time to file the petition shall be granted except for compelling reason and in no case exceeding fifteen (15) days. 13. GLRO Cadastral Record No. if it relates to the acts or omissions of a lower court or of a corporation. This case was set for hearing on August 9. dated 22 February 1995. . Palawan but the area was not indicated. in the Regional Trial Court exercising jurisdiction over the territorial area as defined by the Supreme Court. board. If the motion is denied. or in the Sandiganbayan if it is in aid of its appellate jurisdiction. No extension of time shall be granted except for the most compelling reason and in no case to exceed fifteen (15) days. Before the scheduled hearing on August 13.M. represented by THE DIRECTOR OF LANDS." Verily. Magsaysay. the hearing was reset to August 13. 4. but from the date of the receipt of the questioned order or decision. and the geographical divisions. 5367 in Cadastral Case No. It appears from the record that the lot is located in Barangay Los Angeles. The antecedents are amply summarized in the appealed decision of the Court of Appeals. G. officer or person. HON. Matter No. the instant motion is DENIED. for reason above-stated. unless otherwise provided by law or these rules. when mandatory. not a petition for certiorari. now deceased Josefa Gacot. At the time petitioners filed before the appellate court their petition for certiorari on the 60th day following their receipt of the October 20. Judicial notice. it 5 was subject to appeal. Vicente Dantic. their political history. The amendatory rule in their favor notwithstanding.: The Republic of the Philippines. Contrary to private REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES. it appears that he overlooked the provision of second paragraph of Sec.R. by Resolution of September 13. 1971. (Emphasis and underscoring supplied) The Court of Appeals. 119288 August 18. Consequently. the period herein fixed shall be interrupted. having bought the same from Cipriana Dantic-Llanera as per deed of sale dated April 22. No. the instant petition is. the present Petition for Certiorari is DISMISSED with finality. 1999 Order of the trial court denying their Motion for Reconsideration of its dismissal order. denied. she continued her occupation and introduced improvements thereon as well as declared Lot 5367 for taxation purposes in her name (Exhibit 2) and paid the corresponding taxes thereon up to the present . NO. the petition shall be filed in and cognizable only by the Court of Appeals. 2000.The petition shall be filed in the Supreme Court or. Rule 65 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure as amended per Supreme Court Circular dated July 21. the measure of time. executive and judicial departments of the Philippines. the issue of whether the petition for certiorari was timely filed was still pending reconsideration when the amendment took effect on September 1.4 (Underscoring supplied) Petitioner’s argument is well -taken.03 SC WHICH RESOLUTION TOOK EFFECT ON SEPTEMBER 1. petitioner. hereby DENIED. viz: The entire lot 5367 is being claimed by Josefa Gacot as per answer she filed on June 7. WHEREFORE. the petition at bar. to herein private respondent. J. but which shall not be less than five (5) days in any event. 1990. acting on petitioners’ Motion for Reconsideration of its Order of June 20. the sixty (60) day period within which to file a Petition for Certiorari is not counted from the date of the receipt of the denial of Motion for Reconsideration. COURT OF APPEALS and JOSEFA GACOT. 1950 declaring this lot as property of the Republic of the Philippines. the law of nations. represented by the Director of Lands. order and as such. the Court received a report from the Land Registration Authority calling the Court's attention of the decision rendered by Judge Lorenzo Garlitos on October 20.M. covered by the its retroactive application. hence. WHEREFORE. the claimant in the cadastral case. the laws of nature. (Emphasis and underscoring supplied) Even if petitioner did not raise or allege the amendment in their motion for reconsideration before it. 1990 and the petitioner was represented by Assistant Provincial Prosecutor Reynaldo Guayco and Rogelio Paglinawan. forms of government and symbols of nationality. If it involves the acts or omissions of a quasi-judicial agency. 2000. of the existence and territorial extent of states. AND WHICH AMENDED THE SECOND PARAGRAPH OF SECTION 4. the official acts of the legislative. SO ORDERED. It also appeared that Ceferino Sabenacio is her co-owner. the Court of Appeals should have taken mandatory judicial notice of this Court’s resolution in A. of the Court of Appeals affirming the 12th August 1993 judgment of the Regional Trial Court of Palawan (Branch 50-Puerto Princesa) which has adjudicated Lot No. the aggrieved party may file the petition within the remaining period. 1999 Order had become final and executory after the 15th day following petitioners’ receipt thereof. the petitioner nor the government did not bar the claimant from filing her answer. 1997 "If the petitioner had filed a motion for new trial or reconsideration after notice of said judgment. In view thereof.3 said motion in this wise: xxx From the argument espoused by petitioners’ counsel. Since she acquired the property from Cipriana Llanera. 2000. 1955 in Cuyono dialect (Exhibit 1 and 1-A). 1990. The resolution did not have to specify that it had retroactive effect as it pertains to a procedural matter. (Underscoring supplied) Hence. RESOLUTION VITUG. reckoned from notice of such denial. 00-2 . order or resolution. without the introduction of evidence. petitioners challenging the September 13. The order of the trial court granting private respondent’s Motion to Dismiss the complaint was a final. the said October 20. in 1940 and were in actual possession of the property for more than 30 years. . 00 -02-03 SC. Jr. except that such 60-day period is interrupted upon the filing of a Motion for Reconsideration. prays in the instant petition for review oncertiorari for the annulment of the decision. ISSUED WITH GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION AS IT WAS MADE WITHOUT TAKING PRIOR JUDICIAL NOTICE OF SUPREME COURT A. in light of the foregoing discussions. – A court shall take judicial notice. respondents. possessing and occupying the lot and in fact accepted her tax payments and issuing her tax declaration on the same. 2000 Resolution of the appellant court as having been . 2000. petitioners’ petition fails as stated early on. Section 1. vs. not i nterlocutory. The claimant presented herself as witness as well as her son. It may also be filed in the Court of Appeals whether or not the same is in the aid of its appellate jurisdiction. Rule 129 of the Rules on Evidence reads: SECTION 1.

2061. Palawan have not made any protest nor interposed any objection on the claim of Josefa Gacot during the hearings. Hernando Dantic. . widow and a resident of Barangay Los Angeles. Besides. 1958. In its resolution. the Republic of the Philippines failed to offer as its exhibit the said order. And the sad part was that the government had accepted without any protest all the taxes due the property paid by the claimant religiously. indeed. 1950 of Judge Lorenzo Garlitos declaring Lot No. to support its claim that claimant-appellee Josefa Gacot filed her answer beyond the period fixed by said law and therefore the court a quo did not acquire jurisdiction over the case. prayed that with regards to Lot No. during the rehearing. in the adjudication of cases pending before them. this Court finds the claim of Josefa Gacot Dantic to be in order. Thus. they offered their exhibits and rested their case. 1950. cited in p. both laws setting the time limits for the filing of applications. 5367 as government property . 931. . That claimant is now a widow and has 5 children namely. R.time (Exhibit 3). 31 C. the Government missed its opportunity to have the claim of Josefa Gacot. Garlitos of the Court of First Instance of Palawan.. Jr. the government represented by the Assistant Provincial Prosecutor and the Community Environment and Natural Resources Officer (CENRO) for Puerto Princesa City and Cuyo. Felipe Dantic. 1950. Accordingly. Sec. to present in evidence the said order. This is not to say that this order has been considered in the previous decision of this Court which is hereunder quoted as follows: xxx xxx xxx With this finding of the Court. eon.A. Rec. among other things. Second Ed. public and notorious in the concept of an owner since 38 years ago was well taken and therefore entitled to the lawful adjudication of Lot 5367 in her name. 2061. 1953 and Republic Act No. Antero Dantic. viz: This case was set for hearing several times for the government to present its evidence and for the parties to submit their respective memorandum in support of their respective stand on the matter. Palawan with all the improvements the. declaring that Lot No. even though the trial judge in fact knows or remembers the contents thereof. In its now assailed decision of 22 February 1995.R. Garlitos . Neither was there a manifestation of protest or claim of government use coming from the municipal officials of Magsaysay. 1968. 5367 was among lots declared as property of the Republic of the Philippines. Under R. 92.A. the petitioner thru counsel manifested that it is not presenting controverting evidence and is submitting the 1 case for resolution. Evidence. contends The Republic. thus — WHEREFORE. . Francisco) Indeed. the court a quo did not acquire jurisdiction over the instant claim since she did not file her answer within the period fixed by R. 25. neither has he submitted any memorandum to support the government's stand on this matter. it is its considered opinion and so holds. With the foregoing development. 34) It is true that the Order of 20 October 1950 has been appended to the records of this case ( see p.." (pp. Rollo) [Emphasis Ours] This Court granted the motion and ordered the records of the case remanded to the court a quo for further proceedings "to enable the government to present in evidence the judgment dated October 20. "Neither can We take judicial notice of the Order of Judge Garlitos. During the pendency of the appeal. On 05 September 1990. The Solicitor General thus filed a motion with the appellate court to have the case reopened and remanded to the court a quo to allow the Republic of the Philippines to present the decision of Judge Garlitos. 19. . What transpired thereafter was narrated by the trial court in its 12th August 1993 decision. 5367 as government property. 1950. Unfortunately. 42. Lot 5367 is hereby adjudicated to Josefa Gacot-Dantic. however. the Office of the Solicitor General claims that "records of the re-hearing show that on October 20. 5367 to Josefa Gacot." For. Palawan despite notice sent to them of the cadastral hearing.A. assigning a sole error. an order was. 30-31. the time for filing an application shall not extend beyond December 31.J." (Rule 132. as reflected in the appealed decision. thru the Office of the Solicitor General. dated 26 December 1991. 5367 as property of the Republic of the Philippines. to invoke R. 623-624. the trial court rendered judgment adjudicating Lot No. through the Solicitor General. the alleged co-owner of claimant Josefa Gacot appeared in Court and manifested that he is waiving his claim over Lot 5367 in favor of Josefa Gacot who is in actual possession of the property as he is only a boundary owner. SO ORDERED. As a general rule. Cipriano Sabenacio.)." (p. the Republic. petitioner-appellant argues that since claimant-appellee Josefa Gacot filed her answer only on 07 June 1971. courts are not authorized to take judicial knowledge of the contents of the record of other cases. Fe Dantic and Vicente Dantic. subject to the estate tax as provided by law. the herein appellee. Magsaysay. Rec. et al. which took effect on June 30. Thus. . But it is misleading on the part of the Solicitor General to state that "Records of the rehearing show that on October 20. or even when said other cases have been heard or are pending in the same court and notwithstanding the fact that both cases may have been heard or are really pending before the same judge. The Solicitor General. 5367 "the proceedings therein be ordered reopened and the same be remanded to the court a quo to enable the Republic of the Philippines to present the judgment dated October 20. No. (Municipal Council vs. The claimant submitted her memorandum while the government represented by the Assistant Provincial Prosecutor assigned to this sala has not presented any witness to support the government's claim. There is no basis for the appellant. elevated the case to the Court of Appeals. the Government failed to present the said order of Judge Garlitos in evidence. p. 2061. the Court of Appeals affirmed in toto the judgment of the trial court. The claimant submitted her memorandum while the government represented by the Assistant Provincial Prosecutor has not presented any witness to present the government's claim neither has he submitted any memorandum to support the government's stand on this matter. therefore. Rollo) [Emphasis Ours] It is the rule that "The court shall consider no evidence which has not been formally offered. 4 In the that — instant petition." (p.) It now invokes Republic Act No. 7th Judicial District.S. Precisely. 3 An appeal was taken by the Republic from the decision of the trial court. the Court of Appeals granted the motion. issued by Judge Lorenzo C. the Office of the Solicitor General was able to verify that Lot 5367 was earlier declared to be the property of the Republic in a decision rendered by Judge Lorenzo Garlitos on 20 October 1950 following an order of general default. G. was presented as evidence in the rehearing of this case. the purpose of the rehearing was to enable the Republic of the Philippines. indeed. that there is no reason to disturb its previous decision aforequoted. 2061. issued by Judge Lorenzo C. 19. in its Motion dated 21 May 1991. an order was. This would be true. Colegio de San Jose. approved on June 30.J. the government did not present any evidence nor any memorandum despite having been ordered by the court a quo. The appellate court ratiocinated: . 2 In its brief. the Court is of the opinion that the subsequent application or claim of Josefa Gacot-Dantic on Lot 5367 which became part of the public domain where her occupation thereto having been open to the whole world. L-45460." (see p. the court a quo said in its appealed decision: This case was set for hearing several times for the government to present its evidence and for the parties to submit their respective memoranda in support of their respective stand on the matter. No. After the presentation of claimant and her son. 3. for the reopening of judicial proceedings on certain lands which were declared public land. if the Order dated 20 October 1950 of Judge Lorenzo Garlitos declaring Lot No. declared as a nullity. considering that no evidence was presented by it in opposition thereto. Rollo) [Emphasis Ours] During the rehearing. Thereafter. Appellant's Brief.declaring Lot No.

do not sanction the grant of evidentiary 8 9 value. Judicial notice. PARDO. invokes the rule that the Republic is not estopped by the mistake or error on the part of its officials or agents. For cal. Malolos an Information charging petitioner Vicente del Rosario y Nicolas with violation of P. the official acts of the legislative.00. albeit with reasonable dispatch. No. Furthermore. the measure of time. of the Rules of Court provides: Sec.000. No costs. closed for entry. Firstly. The area of Lot No.1âwphi1. would appear to contain an area of 394. of evidence which is not formally offered. therefore. unlawfully and feloniously have in his possession under his custody and control. the above-named accused. with such comment in order not to unduly delay the remand of the case to the trial court for further proceedings. nevertheless. of Judge Garlitos has been appended to page 19 thereof. 2001 VICENTE DEL ROSARIO y NICOLAS. D. as well as of the record of another case between different parties in the same court. per Land Classification (LC) No. petitioner. The Solicitor General thereupon moved that the heirs of Josefa Gacot be impleaded party respondents in substitution for the deceased. Bulacan. No. 1866. 1996. exploitation and settlement. which under Proclamation No. G. executive and judicialdepartments of the Philippines. the trial court arraigned the petitioner.043 square meters. It is not evident. without the introduction of evidence. SINCE IT (HAS) FAILED TO OFFER AS ITS 5 EXHIBIT THE ORDER. the political constitution and history of the Philippines. Lot No. In appropriate cases. as follows: "That on or about the 15th day of June 1996. Rule 129. The Solicitor General. Philippines. Indeed.56. Marquez of Bulacan filed with the Regional Trial Court. 45 SN:70G23792 (w/o license) "b) One (1) pc. He pleaded not guilty.nêt On June 17.56 (M16) "g) Twenty (20) rds live ammunitions for cal 5. and secondly. Magazines short for cal. The Court. the admiralty and maritime courts of the world and their seals. as minimum. the rules may have to be so construed 10 liberally as to meet and advance the cause of substantial justice. Mr.45 A court will take judicial notice of its own acts and records in the same case. representing the government during the rehearing. In addition judicial notice will be taken of the record. dated 20 October 1950. SO ORDERED. nine (9) months and eleven (11) days of prision correccional. the enforcement of substantive law may not remain assured. Section 1. the following. 2061 TO SUPPORT ITS CLAIM THAT JOSEFA GACOT FILED HER ANSWER BEYOND THE PERIOD FIXED BY THE SAID LAW AND THEREFORE THE TRIAL COURT DID NOT ACQUIRE JURISDICTION OVER THE CASE. eight (8) months and one (1) day of prision mayor. Magazines for cal. 5. to six (6) years. did not present it. 1996. Paras 11 opined: WHEREFORE. the law of nations. DATED OCTOBER 20. 5367. . that technical rules of procedure are not ends in themselves but primarily devised and designed to help in the proper and expedient dispensation of justice. No. of facts established in prior proceedings in the same case. by Republic Act No. in the municipality of Norzagaray.A. . without it. as amended. 5367 claimed and awarded to the late Josefa Gacot had not been specified in the records. of the authenticity of its own records of another case between the same parties. J. Assistant Provincial Prosecutor Eufracio S. as maximum. It must now dispense. when mandatory. of the files of related cases in the same court. as it hereby dispenses.R. "Contrary to law. To this day. — A court shall take judicial notice. and of public records on file in the same court.000 square meters of which were classified as Alienable and Disposable land and 94. their political history. 2152. did then and there wilfully. why the Assistant Provincial Prosecutor and the Community Environment and Natural Resources Officer ("CENRO") for Puerto Princesa.THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS (HAS) ERRED IN RULING THAT THERE IS NO BASIS FOR PETITIONER TO INVOKE R. private respondents have not submitted their comment. dated 29 December 1981. indeed. 22 "f) Five (5) pcs. 1950 OF JUDGE LORENZO GARLITOS. . "d) Five (5) pcs. and finding him guilty beyond reasonable doubt of violation of P. that the rules of procedure and jurisprudence. The Court must add. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES. 22 SN:48673 (w/o license) "c) Twenty Seven (27) rds live ammos. 8294 (illegal possession of firearms). of the existence and territorial extent of states. No. nevertheless. Josefa Gacot passed away. Revolver Cal. Bulacan. however. The motion was granted. and to pay a fine of P30.: Petitioner Vicente del Rosario y Nicolas appeals via certiorari from a decision of the Court of Appeals1 affirming with modification the decision of the Regional Trial Court. "without first having obtained" a proper license therefor. Judicial notice will also be taken of court personnel. 1246 of 15 January 1936. D. sentencing him to four (4) years. vs. Branch 20. for the final resolution of this case. on the basis of the Certification of the Forest Management Services of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.3 Trial ensued.45 "e) Eight (8) rds live ammunitions for cal. in ordinary trials.043 square meters as Timberland. cannot allow the case to remain pending and unresolved indefinitely. respondent. and the geographical divisions. the Court realizes the points observed by the appellate court over which there 6 7 should be no quarrel. 300. and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. and the heirs were directed to comment on the government's petition. Let it initially be said that. In the meantime."2 On June 25. the laws of nature. The Solicitor General explains that the records of the reopened case would show that a certified copy of the decision. Province of Bulacan. to wit: "a) One (1) pc. 142295 May 31. that adjective law is not to be taken lightly for. 13 It behooves all concerned that the above matters be carefully looked into. Justice Edgardo L. however. 12 The remand of the case would likewise seem to be unavoidable. had been included to form part of the Mangrove Swamp Forest Reserve. 1. forms of government and symbols of nationality. Malolos. the case is REMANDED to the trial court for further proceedings for it to ascertain and resolve the conflicting claims of the parties conformably with the foregoing opinion of the Court. 1866. Pistol Cal. pleadings or judgment of a case in another court between the same parties or involving one of the same parties.

"14 In this case. Alfabeto. a search warrant (Exhibit A) was issued by Judge Gil Femandez. and that barangay Bigte in the certification was a typographical error. Supt. as amended by Republic Act No.45 pistol recovered in his bedroom and that the other items seized during the search including the caliber . Insp. and two 2-way radios found in his daughter's bedroom. Licence Branch.00). of the Indeterminate Sentence Law. Records Branch.000. there is stamped the words "Validity of computerized license is extended until renewed license is printed" dated January 17. Insp. P/Sr. we find that petitioner was the holder of a valid firearm license for the . a team led by P/Sr. were planted by the police or were illegally seized. Sr. Bulacan is not a licensed/registered firearm holder of any kind and caliber. Firearms and Explosives Division. and that he has a valid firearm license. PNP Criminal Investigation Command. When the appellant came out. The court is duty bound to examine the evidence assiduously to determine the guilt or innocence of the accused. The inventories were signed by P/Sr. Chief.16 In fact.56 mm. as they were not mentioned in the search warrant. M and N). assailing the decision for being contrary to facts and the law.13 The "findings of fact by the Court of Appeals will not be disturbed by the Court unless these findings are not supported by evidence. we do not review the factual findings of the Court of Appeals and the trial courts. Upon arrival at the house of appellant. premises considered. 1996.22 revolver. PNP under the signature of Reynaldo V. Firearms and Explosives Division. Chief.45 caliber firearm and ammunition seized in his bedroom. Adique informed him that they had a search warrant and that they were authorized to search his house. Appellant likewise assails the manner in which the search was carried out.The facts.45 caliber Colt pistol and ammunition seized in his bedroom. Firearms and Explosives Division. the police officers requested Barangay Chairman Rogelio de Silva and Barangay Councilman Aurelio Panteleon to accompany them in the implementation of the warrant. RCL 1614021915 issued to him on July 13. Armalite rifle. appellant contends that he had a license for the caliber . cal. He also submits that he had a license for the .23 As a senior police officer. the trial court erred grievously in not taking judicial notice of the barangays within its territorial jurisdiction. 10 9 8 Petitioner submits that the search conducted at his residence was illegal the search warrant was issued in violation of 11 the Constitution and consequently. Adique. Norzagaray. were merely planted by the police officers. the appellant and the barangay officials who witnessed the search. prepared three separate inventories of the seized items (Exhibits H. No. On July 20. Philippine National Police stating that Vicente "Vic" del Rosario of Barangay Bigte. 2000. Insp. a . Senior Inspector Adique could easily determine the genuineness and authenticity of the computerized printed . Police Senior Inspector Jerito A. 17 Petitioner presented to the head of the raiding team. the Court of Appeals promulgated its decision affirming with modification the decision of the trial court as set out in the opening paragraph of this decision. 1993. a magazine for 5. were either planted by the police or illegally seized. cannot prevail over a valid firearm license duly issued to petitioner. Insp. he claimed that the barangay officials arrived only after the police already had finished the search.19 On the dorsal side of the printed computerized license.22 revolver with Serial No. one of the searching officers. Adique applied for a search warrant to enable his team to search the house of appellant. and that in any event. "For his defense. Norzagaray. and to pay a fine of Fifteen. 1998. (b) five magazines of 5. Adique went to Norzagaray to serve the warrant. Thousand Pesos (P15. Norzagaray. 1999. "SPO2 Marion Montezon. Furthermore.20 Coupled with this indefinite extension. the findings of the lower courts even directly contradict the evidence. of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. 1995. Armed with the said certification. petitioner appealed to the Court of Appeals. After appellant gave his permission. Bulacan. Chief. Bulacan.22 caliber revolver seized in a drawer at the kitchen of his house. the dispositive portion of which reads: "WHEREFORE. the appellant failed to produce any. the trial court rendered a judgment of conviction. and pursuant to the provisions.15 As against this. Pampanga inquired from the PNP Firearms and Explosive Division "whether or not the report was true. Insp. Colt pistol in question was duly licensed. the Court hereby sentences the accused to suffer imprisonment of six (6) months of arresto mayor. 1996. Branch 217. Velasco. petitioner submitted that he was not the person referred to in the said certification because he is Vicente del Rosario y Nicolas from Barangay Tigbe. 1996. such certification referred to another individual and thus. the evidence seized was inadmissible. Hence. Norzagaray. by the Chief. Roque of the PNP Firearms and Explosives Division issued a certification (Exhibit L) stating that per records in his office. this appeal. the police officers introduced themselves to the wife of appellant. P/Sr.7 On August 10. In this case. Bulacan.nêt "On June 13. Norzagaray. not to him. the Court of Appeals denied the motion for reconsideration for lack of merit. The Court takes judicial notice of the existence of both barangay Tigbe and barangay Bigte. PNP on the absence of a firearm license. Bulacan. P/Sr. 8294. Police Senior Inspector Jerito A. this case comes within the exceptions. We find the petition impressed with merit. Inspector Edwin C. Before proceeding to the residence of the appellant. the appellant is not a licensed/registered firearm holder of any kind and caliber. expiring in January 1995.1âwphi1. He contended that the certification issued by the Chief. The search yielded the following items: (a) a caliber . the Court finds the accused VICENTE DEL ROSARIO y NICOLAS guilty beyond reasonable doubt of violation of P. 48673 (Exhibit F) containing 8 pieces of live ammunition (Exhibit M) found in the kitchen of the house. He comes from barangay Tigbe. cal. Normally. petitioner presented the license to the head of the raiding team. petitioner paid the license fees for the extension of the license for the next two-year period.56 mm.45 (Exhibits B and H) found at the master's bedroom. as minimum. Thereafter SPO2 Montezon prepared a certification of orderly search (Exhibit I) which was signed by the appellant and the barangay officials attesting to the orderly conduct of the search. 1996. Roque. of P/Sr. 1998. When asked about his license to possess the firearms. to six (6) years of prision correctional. 1999. 703792 with five magazines of caliber . Sr. We define the issues as follows: First: whether petitioner had a license for the .56 M-16 rifle and two radios (Exhibits C to C-4) found in the room of appellant's daughter. "After trial and on July 2. petitioner filed with the Court of Appeals a motion for reconsideration and/or new trial. Acting upon the report. 1996. in Norzagaray.21 Consequently.45 caliber Colt pistol seized in the bedroom of his house on June 15. signed by Police Chief Inspector Franklin S.6 On July 9. believing the prosecution's submission that there was only barangay Tigbe. This prompted the police officers to seize the subject firearms. are as follows: "Sometime in May 1996. petitioner presented the printed computerized copy of License No. a magazine for 5. FEO.22 caliber revolver seized in a drawer at the kitchen of his house. 1996. Firearms and Explosives Division. and (c) a caliber .22 As required. First: The . It is true that the court may rely on the certification of the Chief. at about 7:00 o'clock in the morning. The trial court held that the copy of the license presented was blurred. PNP. Adique of the Criminal Investigation Division Group. Armalite rifle and two 2-way radios found in his daughter's bedroom. a valid firearm license. (GSC) PNP. we review the evidence. Chief. On February 22. Insp. as maximum. P/Sr. "Conformably with the provisions of said law. authorizing the search of the residence of appellant at Barangay Tigbe. 1866 as charged under the Information dated June 17. D. the police officers conducted a search of the house.45 cal. Edwin C. and Second: whether the . Jerito Adique of the PNP Criminal Investigation Group at Camp Olivas. the police received a report that accused-appellant Vicente del Rosario was in possession of certain firearms without the necessary licenses. Philippine National Police stating that the person named therein had not been issued a firearm license referred to a certain Vicente "Vic" del Rosario of barangay Bigte. On May 10. 12 However. as found by the Court of Appeals. Bulacan. We shall resolve the issues in seriatim.45 pistol with Serial No. claiming that the police officers just barged into his house without asking permission. Adique. FEO. The other firearm. Operations Branch. the court could rely on the certification dated May 10. Hence. 18 However.4 On June 15.

assuming that the license presented was expired during the period January 1995 to January 1997. The stamp is clearly visible.40 . License 26 must be presented before an authority to purchase ammo could be obtained. as it was. Meantime. and (b) the negative fact that the accused had no license or permit to own or possess the firearm or explosive which fact may be established by the testimony or certification of a representative of the PNP Firearms and Explosives Unit that the accused has no license or permit to possess the subject firearm or explosive. Exhibit this license whenever demanded by proper authority. Colt caliber . Bulacan. the applicant may keep the gun at home pending renewal of the firearm license and issuance of a printed computerized license. 5. del Rosario of Barangay Tigbe. 1997. it would only be a matter of course to determine whether the accused has a license to possess the firearm.45 caliber Colt pistol with serial No. Application for the purchase of ammunition should be made in case of a resident of Metro Manila direct to the Chief. providing that possession of a firearm with an expired 24 25 license was unlawful took effect only on July 7. Firearms and Explosives Division. viz. Printed at the dorsal side of the computerized license is a notice reading: "IMPORTANT 1. and no malice or intent to commit a crime need be proved. within six (6) months from your birth month. Republic Act No. D.: (a) the existence of the subject firearm or explosive which may be proved by the presentation of the subject firearm or explosive or by the testimony of witnesses who saw accused in possession of the same. del Rosario of Barangay Tigbe. Manila. PNP that Vicente N. After possession is established by the prosecution. petitioner duly paid the license fees for the automatic renewal of the firearm license for the next two years upon expiration of the license in January. Nevertheless. 8294. b. 70G23792. on January 25. a malum prohibitum. the service. For those within Metro. FEO and for residents of a Province to secure recommendation letter to the nearest PNP Provincial Command who will thereafter endorse same to CHIEF. 7615186. He belonged to the same national police organization. The license would be renewed. such permit is proof that the regular firearm license was renewed and subsisting within the two-year term up to January 1997. Inspector Edwin C. 1996. 1995. 3. a.: (a) the existence of the subject firearm and (b) the fact that the accused who owned or possessed it does not have the license or permit to possess the same. However. Although the permit to carry firearm outside residence was valid for only one year. according to him.35 The essence of the crime of illegal possession is the possession. According to firearm licensing regulations. "In crimes involving illegal possession of firearm. for the years covering the period from July 13."38 Illegal possession of firearm is a crime punished by special law. Philippine National Police would not issue a permit to carry firearm outside residence unless petitioner had a valid and subsisting firearm license. 1995.32 Chief. Failure to sign license. Conviction by competent court for a crime involving moral turpitude or for any offense where the penalty carries an imprisonment of more than six (6) months or fine of at least Pl. The Chief. d. Roque. 1993 to January 1995. of the subject firearm." 30 Unquestionably. 4. whether actual or constructive. with an expiry date January 1997. This firearm license is valid for two (2) years. When firearms become permanently unserviceable."37 "To convict an accused for illegal possession of firearms and explosives under P. f. a . without which there can be no conviction for illegal possession. 1866 is primarily the accused's lack of license or permit to carry or possess the firearm. Aside from the clearly valid and subsisting license issued to petitioner.00. Failure to renew this license by paying annual license. PNP. to the issuance of his renewed license on January 17. 6.33 Reinforcing the aforementioned certification. 1997. Senior Insp. of P/Sr. and the extension appearing at the back thereof for the years 1995 to 1997. two (2) essential elements must be indubitably established. He must know the computerized license printed form. Philippine National Police issued to him a permit to carry firearm outside residence valid until January 25. It could not be given retroactive effect. for the succeeding two-year period. however. 1997. for the firearm in 29 question.45 cal. Failure to notify the Chief of PNP in writing of your change of address. Firearms and Explosives Division. Carrying of firearm/s outside of residence without appropriate permit and/or carrying firearm/s in prohibited places. and/or qualification. Finally. The absence of license and legal authority constitutes an essential ingredient of the offense of illegal possession of firearm and every ingredient or essential element of an offense must be shown by the prosecution by proof beyond reasonable doubt. your next of kin should surrender your firearm/s to the nearest PNP Unit. Dismissal for cause from. possession of the firearm in question. petitioner would have been correctly acquitted. on January 17. the Chief. 1997. PNP renewed petitioner's license for the .provided that the license had not been cancelled or revoked. possession of firearm with an expired license was not considered unlawful. the negative fact of lack or absence of license constitutes an essential ingredient of the offense which the prosecution has the duty not only to allege but also. 1866. He was not obliged to surrender the weapon. e. 2. RL-C1614021915. Records Branch. thus sparing this Court of valuable time and effort. fees. was issued firearm license No. 1996.45 Pistol with Serial Number 70G23792.45 with serial number 70G23792. covered by computerized license issued dated June 15. 1996. D. because petitioner still possessed the required qualifications. The firearm was kept at home. Renewal of your license can be made within your birth month or month preceding your birth month. Meantime.license presented. petitioner had a valid firearm license during the interregnum between January 17. 28 In fact. not carried outside residence. Stated otherwise. FEO for issuance of the permit. there is no rhyme or reason why the Court of Appeals and the trial court did not accept with alacrity the certification dated June 25. there must be possession coupled with intent to possess (animus possidendi) the firearm. He could decipher the words and the signature of the authorized signing official of the Firearms and Explosives Division. a renewed license was issued on January 17. stating that Vicente N. 1995. Adique rejected the license presented because. 1995. Norzagaray. Norzagaray."36 "Possession of any firearm becomes unlawful only if the necessary permit or license therefor is not first obtained. Under any of the following instances. surrender should be made with FEO." x x x We stress that the essence of the crime penalized under P. and expired on January 25. 1995. the validity of the license was extended until the renewed computerized license was printed. Camp Crame. it was expired. dated 27 January 17. the Chief. Loss of firearm/s through negligence.39 To support a conviction. as evidenced by official receipt No. On June 15. Unauthorized loan of firearm/s to another person is punishable by permanent disqualification and forfeiture of the firearm in favor of the government. The expired license was not cancelled or revoked. g. as amended. or sign ID picture or affix right thumb mark. Bulacan is a licensed/registered holder of Pistol. the prosecution has the burden of proving the elements thereof. 1999. ammunition or explosive as possession by itself is not prohibited by law. viz. at the time of the seizure of the firearm in question. It served as temporary authority to possess the firearm until the renewed license was issued. c. 31 Colt pistol in question. during that period was not illegal. they should be deposited with the nearest PNP Unit and ownership should be relinquished in writing so that firearms may be disposed of in accordance with law. for caliber ." Indeed. to prove beyond reasonable doubt. the renewal of a firearm license was automatically applied for upon payment of the license fees for the renewal period. 1996. still." A Permit to Carry Firearm Outside Residence presupposes that the party to whom it is issued is duly licensed to possess the firearm in question. your license shall be revoked for which reason your firearm/s is/are subject to confiscation and its/their forfeiture in favor of the government. Late renewal shall be penalized with 50% surcharge for the first month (from the first day to the last day of this month) followed by an additional 25% surcharge for all of the succeeding five (5) months compounded monthly.34 Had the lower courts given full probative value to these official issuances. as heretofore stated.000. petitioner submitted another certification dated August 27. Clearly then. If termination is due to death. Surrender your firearm/s to the nearest PNP Unit upon revocation or termination of this license.

it shall be inadmissible in evidence for any purpose in any proceeding. Right from the start. sir. immediately apparent to such officer that the item he sees may be evidence of a crime or a contraband or is otherwise subject to seizure. the complainant and such witnesses as the latter may produce. sir. We condemn the seizure as illegal and a plain violation of a citizen's right. The same is true with respect to the 5. to emphasize. This firearm. the judge must examine.' x x x x Hence. the confiscation of the two 2-way radios was clearly illegal. was not mentioned in the search warrant. Q: How about the unlicensed firearms in your barangay which he asked. and (3) it is. because he was just trying to squeeze something from me. A: I told him my firearm is licensed and I do not have money. However.In upholding the prosecution and giving credence to the testimony of police officer Jerito A. More importantly. the 50 seizure was illegal. About the . No. The possession of such radios is not even included in the charge of illegal possession of firearms (violation of P. The seizure of items not mentioned in the search warrant was illegal. Doria. a distinction should be made between criminal intent and intent to possess. inadvertently found in plain view.1866. the firearm was not found inadvertently and in plain view. This is a flagrant error because his testimony is directly contradictory to the official records of the Firearms and Explosives Division. (b) the evidence was inadvertently discovered by the police who had the right to be where they are.45 firearm can not be licensed to a private individual. D.54 we clarified the meaning of possession for the purpose of convicting a person under P. Insp. P/Sr. True that as an exception. What was your comment to what he said? A: I said my firearm is licensed and we have Courts of law who do not conform with officials like you and then he laughed and laughed. the absence of even one will cause" its downright . Hence. the possessor must know of the existence of the subject firearm in his possession or control.22 cal. there was absolutely no reason for the seizure. I will not give him. "Section 2. (c) the evidence must be immediately apparent. absent which such search and seizure becomes 'unreasonable' within the meaning of said constitutional provision. The National Telecommunication Commission is the sole agency authorized to seize unlicensed two-way radios.45 Colt pistol in question. suffice it to say that the firearm was not mentioned in the search warrant applied for and issued for the search of petitioner's house. the trial court relied 41 on the presumption of regularity in the performance of official duties by the police officers. "In People v. The seizure was invalid and the seized items were inadmissible in evidence. pistol." In the language of the fundamental law. from you? I said I do not know any unlicensed firearm in our barangay. Q: A: Q: How did he say about the ten thousand pesos? He said "palit kalabaw na lang tayo" sir. In the absence of animus possidendi. Q: A: Q: A: Q: A: sir. the possessor of a firearm incurs no criminal liability. and (d) "plain view" justified mere seizure of evidence without further search. Searching officers are without discretion regarding what 48 articles they shall seize.22 found in a drawer in your kitchen? A: He told me that since my firearm is licensed. It was found as a result of a meticulous search in the kitchen of petitioner's house.45 pistol and the alleged cal. As explained in People v. it must still be shown that there was animus possidendi or an intent to possess on the part of the accused. seizure of evidence in "plain view" is justified when there is: (a) a prior valid intrusion based on the valid warrantless arrest in which the police are legally present in the pursuit of their official duties. Adigui. Morever. the petitioner rightly rejected the firearm as planted and not belonging to him. PNP. Worse. (2) the probable cause must be determined by the judge himself and not by the applicant or any other person.53 Hence."44 This ruling has no basis either in law or in jurisprudence. 56 the "plain view" doctrine applies when the following requisites concur: (1) the law if enforcement officer is in a position where he has a clear view of a particular area or alias prior justification for an intrusion. sir. Article III of the Constitution lays down the general rule that a search and seizure must be carried out through or on the strength of a judicial warrant. under oath or affirmation.56 cal. Insp. P/Sr. give him ten thousand pesos (P10. the police may seize without warrant illegally possessed firearm or any contraband for that matter.The National Telecommunications Commission may license two-way radios at its discretion. but inadvertently comes across an 52 incriminating object.nêt Consequently. (2) said officer inadvertently comes across (or sees in plain view) a piece of incriminating evidence. the Court will believe me because I am a police officer. The seizure without the requisite search warrant was in plain violation of the law and the 51 Constitution. which must prevail. D. D. the petitioner was not charged with illegal possession of the two-way radios.49 In this case. thus: x x x 'In the present case. Adigue proceeded to detain petitioner and charged him with illegal possession of firearms.22 caliber revolver with Serial No." 46 "Supporting jurisprudence thus outlined the following requisites for a search warrant's validity. the two-way radios were not mentioned in the search warrant. what was your answer to him? I told him that it was not mine." Specifically. The prosecution was not able to prove that the firearm was in the effective possession or control of the petitioner without a license. We quote pertinent portions of the testimony of petitioner: Q: What else did Adigue tell you after showing to him the license of your cal. admittedly. the presumption of regularity can not prevail over the Constitutional presumption of 42 innocence. What did he say next? He said that it is your word against mine. And what did you answer him? nullification: (1) it must be issued upon probable cause. 48673. 1866 is one where the accused possessed a firearm either physically or constructively with animus possidendi or intention to possess the same. No.45 Second issue.00) and for me to tell who among the people in our barangay have unlicensed firearm." Seizure is limited to those items particularly described in a valid search warrant. "[t]he seizure of evidence in 'plain view' applies only where the police officer is not searching for evidence against the accused. as amended) alleged in the Information. No. In illegal possession of firearms. Jerito A. . Despite this fact. magazine found in the bedroom of petitioner's daughter. sir. Evidence seized on the occasion of such an unreasonable search and seizure is tainted and excluded for being the proverbial "fruit of a poisonous tree.1âwphi1. the kind of possession punishable under P. de Gracia. The if radios were not contraband per se. that the police raiding team found in a drawer at the kitchen of petitioner's house. (3) in the determination of probable cause."43 The trial court was obviously misguided when it held that "it is a matter of judicial notice that a caliber . . and (4) the warrant 47 issued must particularly describe the place to be searched and persons or things to be seized. With respect to the . While mere possession without criminal intent is sufficient to convict a person for illegal possession of a firearm. if I have. 1866.000." With particular reference to the two 2-way radios that the raiding policemen also seized in the bedroom of petitioner's daughter.57 The burden is on the prosecution to show that the two-way radios were not licensed. sir."55 That is the meaning of animus possidendi. they planted it. Adigue was aware that petitioner possessed a valid license for the caliber . he will return my firearm.

22 caliber revolver with Serial No. Bulacan. the five (5) extra magazines and twenty seven (27) rounds of live ammunition. as amended by R. 48673. The Chief. with Serial Number No. The . No. Costs de oficio. 8294 (illegal possession of firearms and ammunition).WHEREFORE. and the two 2way radios confiscated from him. caliber Armalite rifle are confiscated in favor of the government.45 Colt pistol.1âwphi1. 70023792. Malolos.nêt SO ORDERED. No. or his duly authorized representative shall show to this Court proof of compliance herewith within fifteen (15) days from notice. PNP shall return to petitioner his caliber .56 mm. The Chief. Firearms and Explosives Division. D. and eight (8) live ammunition and the magazine for 5. The Court ACQUITS petitioner Vicente del Rosario y Nicolas of the charge of violation of P. CR No. R. A. 22255. the Court hereby REVERSES the decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. in Criminal Case No. promulgated on July 09. . Regional Trial Court. 800-M-96. 1866. 1999. Branch 20. Philippine National Police.