G.R. No.

133917

February 19, 2001

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. NASARIO MOLINA y MANAMA @ !O!ONG a"# GREGORIO M$LA y MALAG$RA @ !O!O% , accused-appellants. %NARES&SANTIAGO, J.' To sanction disrespect and disregard for the Constitution in the name of protecting the society from lawbreakers is to make the government itself lawless and to subvert those values upon which our ultimate freedom and liberty depend.1 For automatic review is the Decision of the !egional Trial Court of Davao City, "ranch 1#, in Criminal Case $o. %#, &'-(&, finding accused-appellants $asario )olina y )anamat alias *"obong* and +regorio )ula y )alagura alias *"oboy,* guilty beyond reasonable doubt of violation of ,ection -,% of the Dangerous Drugs .ct of 1(# /!epublic .ct $o. &' 01, as amended by !epublic .ct $o. #&0(, ' and sentencing them to suffer the supreme penalty of death. The information against accused-appellants reads2 That on or about .ugust -, 1((&, in the City of Davao, 3hilippines, and within the 4urisdiction of this 5onorable Court, the above-named accused, in conspiracy with each other, did then and there willfully, unlawfully and feloniously was found in their possession ('&.( grants of dried mari4uana which are prohibited. C6$T!.!7 T6 8.9.0 :pon arraignment on ,eptember ', 1((&, accused-appellants pleaded not guilty to the accusation against them.&Trial ensued, wherein the prosecution presented 3olice ,uperintendent ;riel )allorca, ,361 8eonardo 7. 3amplona, <r., and ,361 )arino ,. 3aguidopon, <r. as witnesses. The antecedent facts are as follows2 ,ometime in <une 1((&, ,361 )arino 3aguidopon, then a member of the 3hilippine $ational 3olice detailed at 3recinct $o. %, )atina, Davao City, received an information regarding the presence of an alleged mari4uana pusher in Davao City. # The first time he came to see the said mari4uana pusher in person was during the first week of <uly 1((&. ,361 3aguidopon was then with his informer when a motorcycle passed by. 5is informer pointed to the motorcycle driver, accusedappellant )ula, as the pusher. .s to accused-appellant )olina, ,361 3aguidopon had no occasion to see him before the arrest. )oreover, the names and addresses of the accused- appellants came to the knowledge of ,361 3aguidopon only after they were arrested..t about #2%= in the morning of .ugust -, 1((&, ,361 3aguidopon received an information that the alleged pusher will be passing at $5., )a- a, Davao City any

time that morning.( Conse>uently, at around -2== ..). of the same day, he called for assistance at the 3$3, 3recinct $o. %, )atina, Davao City, which immediately dispatched the team of ,36' Dionisio Cloribel /team leader1, ,36 3aguidopon /brother of ,361 )arino 3aguidopon1, and ,361 3amplona, to proceed to the house of ,361 )arino 3aguidopon where they would wait for the alleged pusher to pass by.1= .t around (2%= in the morning of .ugust -, 1((&, while the team were positioned in the house of ,361 3aguidopon, a *trisikad* carrying the accused-appellants passed by. .t that instance, ,361 3aguidopon pointed to the accused-appellants as the pushers. Thereupon, the team boarded their, vehicle and overtook the *trisikad.*11 ,361 3aguidopon was left in his house, thirty meters from where the accused-appellants were accosted.1 The police officers then ordered the *trisikad* to stop. .t that point, accusedappellant )ula who was holding a black bag handed the same to accused-appellant )olina. ,ubse>uently, ,361 3amplona introduced himself as a police officer and asked accused-appellant )olina to open the bag. 1% )olina replied, "Boss, if possible we will settle this."1' ,361 3amplona insisted on opening the bag, which revealed dried mari4uana leaves inside. Thereafter? accused-appellants )ula and )olina were handcuffed by the police officers.10 6n December &, 1((&, accused-appellants, through counsel, 4ointly filed a Demurrer to ;vidence, contending that the mari4uana allegedly sei@ed from them is inadmissible as evidence for having been obtained in violation of their constitutional right against unreasonable searches and sei@ures. 1& The demurrer was denied by the trial court.1#. motion for reconsideration was filed by accused-appellants, but this was likewise denied. .ccused-appellants waived presentation of evidence and opted to file a 4oint memorandum. 6n .pril 0, 1((#, the trial court rendered the assailed decision, 1- the decretal portion of which reads2 95;!;F6!;, finding the evidence of the prosecution alone without any evidence from both accused who waived presentation of their own evidence through their counsels, more than sufficient to prove the guilt of both accused of the offense charged beyond reasonable doubt, pursuant to ,ec. =, sub. par. 0 of !epublic .ct #&0(, accused $.,.!A6 )68A$. and +!;+6!A6 ):8., are sentenced to suffer a ,:3!;); 3;$.8T7 6F D;.T5 through lethal in4ection under !epublic .ct -1#&, to be effected and implemented as therein provided for by law, in relation to ,ec. ' of !ep. .ct #&0(. The "ranch Clerk of Court of this court, is ordered to immediately elevate the entire records of this case with the Clerk of Court of the ,upreme Court, )anila, for the automatic review of their case by the ,upreme Court and its appropriate action as the case may be. ,6 6!D;!;D.1(

3ursuant to .rticle '# of the !evised penal Code and !ule 1 , ,ection 1= of the !ules of Court, the case was elevated to this Court on automatic review. .ccusedappellants contend2 A. T5.T T5; ).!A<:.$. A, A$ .D)A,,A"8; A$ ;BAD;$C; F6! 5.BA$+ ";;$ ,;AC;D A$ BA68.TA6$ 6F .33;88.$T,D C6$,TAT:TA6$.8 !A+5T, .+.A$,T :$!;.,6$."8;, ,;.!C5;, .$D ,;AC:!;,? AA. T5.T .,,:)A$+ AT A, .D)A,,A"8; A$ ;BAD;$C;, T5; +6B;!$);$T 5., $6T 6T5;!9A,; 3!6B;D T5;A! +:A8T ";76$D !;.,6$."8; D6:"T? .$D AAA. T5.T, FA$.887, .,,:)A$+ T5;A! +:A8T 5., ";;$ 3!6B;D ";76$D !;.,6$."8; D6:"T, T5; A)36,."8; 3;$.8T7 F6! BA68.TA6$ 6F ,;C. - 6F !. $o. #&0( (sic), A$ T5; .",;$C; 6F .$7 .++!.B.TA$+ CA!C:),T.$C;, A, 8AF; A)3!A,6$);$T, $6T D;.T5. = The ,olicitor +eneral filed a )anifestation and )61ion /An 8ieu of "rief1, wherein he prayed for the ac>uittal of both accused-appellants. The fundamental law of the land mandates that searches and sei@ures be carried out in a reasonable fashion, that is, by virtue or on the strength of a search warrant predicated upon the eEistence of a probable cause. The pertinent provision of the Constitution provides2 ,;C. . The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and sei@ures of whatever nature and for any purpose shall be inviolable, and no search warrant or warrant of arrest shall issue eEcept upon probable cause to be determined personally by the 4udge after eEamination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be sei@ed. 1 Complementary to the foregoing provision is the eEclusionary rule enshrined under .rticle AAA, ,ection %, paragraph , which bolsters and solidifies the protection against unreasonable searches and sei@ures. Thus2 .ny evidence obtained in violation of this or the preceding section shall be inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding. 9ithout this rule, the right to privacy would be a form of words, valueless and undeserving of mention in a perpetual charter of inestimable human liberties? so too, without this rule, the freedom from state invasions of privacy would be so ephemeral and so neatly severed from its conceptual neEus with the freedom from all brutish means of coercing evidence as not to merit this CourtDs high regard as a freedom implicit in the concept of ordered liberty. %

The foregoing constitutional proscription, however, is not without eEceptions. ,earch and sei@ure may be made without a warrant and the evidence obtained therefrom may be admissible in the following instances2 /11 search incident to a lawful arrest? / 1 search of a moving motor vehicle? /%1 search in violation of customs laws? /'1 sei@ure of evidence in plain view? /01 when the accused himself waives his right against unreasonable searches and sei@ures? ' and /&1 stop and frisk situations /Terry search1. 0 The first eEception /search incidental to a lawful arrest1 includes a valid warrantless search and sei@ure pursuant to an e>ually valid warrantless arrest which must precede the search. An this instance, the law re>uires that there be first a lawful arrest before a search can be made --- the process cannot be reversed. & .s a rule, an arrest is considered legitimate if effected with .a valid warrant of arrest. The !ules of Court, however, recogni@es permissible warrantless arrests. Thus, a peace officer or a private person may, without warrant, arrest a person2 /a1 when, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense /arrest in flagrante delicto1? /b1 when an offense has 4ust been committed and he has probable cause to believe based on personal knowledge of facts or circumstances that the person to be arrested has committed it /arrest effected in hot pursuit1? and /c1 when the person to be arrested is a prisoner who has escaped from a penal establishment or a place where he is serving final 4udgment or is temporarily confined while his case is pending, or has escaped while being transferred from one confinement to another / arrest of escaped prisoners 1. # An the case at bar, the court a quo anchored its 4udgment of conviction on a finding that the warrantless arrest of accused-appellants, and the subse>uent search conducted by the peace officers, are valid because accused-appellants were caught in flagrante delicto in possession of prohibited drugs. - This brings us to the issue of whether or not the warrantless arrest, search and sei@ure in the present case fall within the recogni@ed eEceptions to the warrant re>uirement. An People v. Chua Ho San, ( the Court held that in cases of in flagrante delicto arrests, a peace officer or a private person may, without a warrant, arrest a person when, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense. The arresting officer, therefore, must have personal knowledge of such fact or, as recent case law adverts to, personal knowledge of facts or circumstances convincingly indicative or constitutive of probable cause. .s discussed in People v. oria,%= probable cause means an actual belief or reasonable grounds of suspicion. The grounds of suspicion are reasonable when, in the absence of actual belief of the arresting officers, the suspicion that the person to be arrested is probably guilty of committing the offense, is based on actual facts, i.e., supported by circumstances sufficiently strong in themselves to create the probable cause of guilt of the person to be arrested. . reasonable suspicion therefore must be founded on probable cause, coupled with good faith on the part of the peace officers making the arrest. .s applied to in flagrante delicto arrests, it is settled that *reliable information* alone, absent any overt act indicative of a felonious enterprise in the presence and

within the view of the arresting officers, are not sufficient to constitute probable cause that would 4ustify an in flagrante delicto arrest. Thus, in People v. !"innudin,%1 it was held that *the accused-appellant was not, at the moment of his arrest, committing a crime nor was it shown that he was about to do so or that he had 4ust done so. 9hat he was doing was descending the gangplank of the #$9ilcon ( and there was no outward indication that called for his arrest. To all appearances, he was like any of the other passengers innocently disembarking from the vessel. At was only when the informer pointed to him as the carrier of the mari4uana that he suddenly became suspect and so sub4ect to apprehension.* 8ikewise, in People v. #engote,% the Court did not consider *eyes... darting from side to side 2.. FwhileG holding ... FoneDsG abdomen*, in a crowded street at 112%= in the morning, as overt acts and circumstances sufficient to arouse suspicion and indicative of probable cause. .ccording to the Court, *FbGy no stretch of the imagination could it have been inferred from these acts that an offense had 4ust been committed, or was actually being committed or was at least being attempted in Fthe arresting officersDG presence.* ,o also, in People v. %ncinada,%%the Court ruled that no probable cause is gleanable from the act of riding a "otorela while holding two plastic baby chairs.&'wphi&.n(t Then, too, in #alacat v. Court of !ppeals,%' the trial court concluded that petitioner was attempting to commit a crime as he was *Hstanding at the comer of 3la@a )iranda and Iue@on "oulevardD with his eyes Dmoving very fastD and Dlooking at every person that come /sic1 nearer /sic1 to them.D* %0 An declaring the warrantless arrest therein illegal, the Court said2 5ere, there could have been no valid in flagrante delicto ... arrest preceding the search in light of the lack of personal knowledge on the part of B u, the arresting officer, or an overt physical act, on the part of petitioner, indicating that a crime had 4ust been committed, was being committed or was going to be committed.%& At went on to state that J ,econd, there was nothing in petitionerDs behavior or conduct which could have reasonably elicited even mere suspicion other than that his eyes were *moving very fast* - an observation which leaves us incredulous since 7u and his teammates were nowhere near petitioner and it was already &2%= p.m., thus presumably dusk. 3etitioner and his companions were merely standing at the comer and were not creating any commotion or trouble... Third, there was at all no ground, probable or otherwise, to believe that petitioner was armed with a deadly weapon. $one was visible to 7u, for as he admitted, the alleged grenade was *discovered* *inside the front waistline* of petitioner, and from all indications as to the distance between 7u and petitioner, any telltale bulge, assuming that petitioner was indeed hiding a grenade, could not have been visible to 7u.%#

Clearly, to constitute a valid in flagrante delicto arrest, two re>uisites must concur2 /11 the person to be arrested must eEecute an overt act indicating that he has 4ust committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit a crime? and / 1 such overt act is done in the presence or within the view of the arresting officer. %An the case at bar, accused-appellants manifested no outward indication that would 4ustify their arrest. An holding a bag on board a trisi)ad, accused-appellants could not be said to be committing, attempting to commit or have committed a crime. At matters not that accused-appellant )olina responded *"oss, if possible we will settle this* to the re>uest of ,361 3amplona to open the bag. ,uch response which allegedly reinforced the *suspicion* of the arresting officers that accused-appellants were committing a crime, is an e>uivocal statement which standing alone will not constitute probable cause to effect an inflagrante delicto arrest. $ote that were it not for ,361 )arino 3aguidopon /who did not participate in the arrest but merely pointed accused-appellants to the arresting officers1, accused-appellants could not be the sub4ect of any suspicion, reasonable or otherwise. 9hile ,361 3aguidopon claimed that he and his informer conducted a surveillance of accused-appellant )ula, ,361 3aguidopon, however, admitted that he only learned )ulaDs name and address after the arrest. 9hat is more, it is doubtful if ,361 3aguidopon indeed recogni@ed accused-appellant )ula. At is worthy to note that, before the arrest, he was able to see )ula in person only once, pinpointed to him by his informer while they were on the side of the road. These circumstances could not have afforded ,361 3aguidopon a closer look at accused-appellant )ula, considering that the latter was then driving a motorcycle when, ,361 3aguidopon caught a glimpse of him. 9ith respect to accused-appellant )olina, ,361 3aguidopon admitted that he had never seen him before the arrest. This belies the claim of ,361 3amplona that he knew the name of accusedappellants even before the arrest, to wit J *I9hen you said that certain )ula handed a black bag to another person and how did you know that it was )ula who handed the black bag to another personK ."ecause A have already information from 3aguidopon, regarding )ula and )olina, when they pass by through the street near the residence of 3aguidopon. 5e told that the one who is big one that is +regorio )ula and the thin one is $a@ario )olina*%( The aforecited testimony of ,361 3amplona, therefore, is entirely baseless ,361 3amplona could not have learned the name of accused-appellants from ,361 3aguipodon because 3aguipodon himself, who allegedly conducted the surveillance, was not even aware of accused-appellantsD name and address prior to the arrest. ;vidently, ,361 3aguidopon, who acted as informer of the arresting officers, more so the arresting officers themselves, could not have been certain of accusedappellantsD identity, and were, from all indications, merely fishing for evidence at the time of the arrest.

Compared to People v. %ncinada, the arresting officer in the said case knew appellant ;ncinada even before the arrest because of the latterDs illegal gambling activities, thus, lending at least a semblance of validity on the arrest effected by the peace officers. $evertheless, the Court declared in said case that the warrantless arrest and the conse>uent search were illegal, holding that *FtGhe prosecutionDs evidence did not show any suspicious behavior when the appellant disembarked from the ship or while he rode the "otorela. $o act or fact demonstrating a felonious enterprise could be ascribed to appellant under such bare circumstances.*'= )oreover, it could not be said that accused-appellants waived their right against unreasonable searches and sei@ure. Amplied ac>uiescence to the search, if there was any, could not have been more than mere passive conformity given under intimidating or coercive circumstances and is thus considered no consent at all within the purview of the constitutional guarantee.'1 9ithal, the Court holds that the arrest of accused-appellants does not fall under the eEceptions allowed by the rules. 5ence, the search conducted on their person was likewise illegal. Conse>uently, the mari4uana sei@ed by the peace officers could not be admitted as evidence against accused-appellants, and the Court is thus, left with no choice but to find in favor of accused-appellants. 9hile the Court strongly supports the campaign of the government against drug addiction and commends the efforts of our law-enforcement officers towards this drive, all efforts for the achievement of a drug-free society must not encroach on the fundamental rights and liberties of individuals as guaranteed in the "ill of !ights, which protection eEtends even to the basest of criminals. (HEREFORE, the Decision of the !egional Trial Court of Davao City, "ranch 1#, in Criminal Case $o. %#, &'-(&, is RE)ERSE* and SET ASI*E. For lack of evidence to establish their guilt beyond reasonable doubt, accused-appellants $asario )olina y )anamat alias *"obong* and +regorio )ula y )alagura alias *"oboy*, areA+,$ITTE* and ordered RELEASE* from confinement unless they are validly detained for other offenses. $o costs. SO OR*ERE*.

-G.R. No. 12.299. /a"uary 22, 19990 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. FLOREN+IO *ORIA y !OLA*O, a"# )IOLETA GA**AO y +ATAMA @ NENETH, accused-appellants. *E+ISION P$NO, J.' 6n December #, 1((0, accused-appellants Florencio Doria y "olado and Bioleta +addao y Catama L *$eneth* were charged with violation of ,ection ', in relation to ,ection 1 of the Dangerous Drugs .ct of 1(# .F1G The information reads2 *That on or about the 0th day of December, 1((0 in the City of )andaluyong, 3hilippines, a place within the 4urisdiction of this 5onorable Court, the above-named accused, conspiring, confederating and mutually helping and aiding one another and without having been authori@ed by law, did, then and there willfully, unlawfully and feloniously sell, administer, deliver and give away to another eleven /111 plastic bags of suspected mari4uana fruiting tops weighing #,&'1.=- grams in violation of the above-cited law. C6$T!.!7 T6 8.9.*
F G

him at the corner of ,haw "oulevard and <acinto ,treet while he got the mari4uana from his associate.F0G .n hour later, *<un* appeared at the agreed place where 36% )anlangit, the CA and the rest of the team were waiting. *<un* took out from his bag an ob4ect wrapped in plastic and gave it to 36% )anlangit. 36% )anlangit forthwith arrested *<un* as ,361 "adua rushed to help in the arrest. They frisked *<un* but did not find the marked bills on him. :pon in>uiry, *<un* revealed that he left the money at the house of his associate named *$eneth.* F&G *<un* led the police team to *$enethDs* house nearby at Daang "akal. The team found the door of *$enethDs* house open and a woman inside. *<un* identified the woman as his associate. F#G ,361 "adua asked *$eneth* about the 31,&==.== as 36% )anlangit looked over *$enethDs* house. ,tanding by the door, 36% )anlangit noticed a carton boE under the dining table. 5e saw that one of the boEDs flaps was open and inside the boE was something wrapped in plastic. The plastic wrapper and its contents appeared similar to the mari4uana earlier *sold* to him by *<un.* 5is suspicion aroused, 36% )anlangit entered *$enethDs* house and took hold of the boE. 5e peeked inside the boE and found that it contained ten /1=1 bricks of what appeared to be dried mari4uana leaves. ,imultaneous with the boEDs discovery, ,361 "adua recovered the marked bills from *$eneth.*F-G The policemen arrested *$eneth.* They took *$eneth* and *<un,* together with the boE, its contents and the marked bills and turned them over to the investigator at head>uarters. At was only then that the police learned that *<un* is Florencio Doria y "olado while *$eneth* is Bioleta +addao y Catama. The one /11 brick of dried mari4uana leaves recovered from *<un* plus the ten /1=1 bricks recovered from *$enethDs* house were eEamined at the 3$3 Crime 8aboratory. F(G The bricks, eleven /111 in all, were found to be dried mari4uana fruiting tops of various weights totalling #,&'1.=- grams.F1=G The prosecution story was denied by accused-appellants Florencio Doria and Bioleta +addao. Florencio Doria, a %%-year old carpenter, testified that on December 0, 1((0, at #2== in the morning, he was at the gate of his house reading a tabloid newspaper. Two men appeared and asked him if he knew a certain *Totoy.* There were many *Totoys* in their area and as the men >uestioning him were strangers, accused-appellant denied knowing any *Totoy.* The men took accused-appellant inside his house and accused him of being a pusher in their community. 9hen accused-appellant denied the charge, the men led him to their car outside and ordered him to point out the house of *Totoy.* For five /01 minutes, accused-appellant stayed in the car. Thereafter, he gave in and took them to *TotoyDs* house. Doria knocked on the door of *TotoyDs* house but no one answered. 6ne of the men, later identified as 36% )anlangit, pushed open the door and he and his companions entered and looked around the house for about three minutes. .ccusedappellant Doria was left standing at the door. The policemen came out of the house and they saw Bioleta +addao carrying water from the well. 5e asked Bioleta where *Totoy* was but she replied he was not there. Curious onlookers and kibit@ers were, by that time, surrounding them. 9hen Bioleta entered her house, three men were

The prosecution contends the offense was committed as follows2 An $ovember 1((0, members of the $orth )etropolitan District, 3hilippine $ational 3olice /3$31 $arcotics Command /$arcom1, received information from two / 1 civilian informants /CA1 that one *<un* was engaged in illegal drug activities in )andaluyong City. The $arcom agents decided to entrap and arrest *<un* in a buy-bust operation. .s arranged by one of the CADs, a meeting between the $arcom agents and *<un* was scheduled on December 0, 1((0 at ;. <acinto ,treet in )andaluyong City. 6n December 0, 1((0, at &2== in the morning, the CA went to the 3$3 5ead>uarters at ;D,., Mamuning, Iue@on City to prepare for the buy-bust operation. The $arcom agents formed Team .lpha composed of 3NAnsp. $olasco Cortes as team leader and 36% Celso )anlangit, ,361 ;dmund "adua and four /'1 other policemen as members. 3NAnsp. Cortes designated 36% )anlangit as the poseur-buyer and ,361 "adua as his back-up, and the rest of the team as perimeter security. ,uperintendent 3edro .lcantara, Chief of the $orth )etropolitan District 3$3 $arcom, gave the team 3 ,===.== to cover operational eEpenses. From this sum, 36% )anlangit set aside 31,&==.==-- a one thousand peso bill and siE /&1 one hundred peso billsF%G-- as money for the buy-bust operation. The market price of one kilo of mari4uana was then 31,&==.==. 36% )anlangit marked the bills with his initials and listed their serial numbers in the police blotter. F'G The team rode in two cars and headed for the target area. .t #2 = of the same morning, *<un* appeared and the CA introduced 36% )anlangit as interested in buying one /11 kilo of mari4uana. 36% )anlangit handed *<un* the marked bills worth 31,&==.==. *<un* instructed 36% )anlangit to wait for

already inside. .ccused-appellant Doria, then still at the door, overheard one of the men say that they found a carton boE. Turning towards them, Doria saw a boE on top of the table. The boE was open and had something inside. 36% )anlangit ordered him and Bioleta to go outside the house and board the car. They were brought to police head>uarters where they were investigated. .ccused-appellant Doria further declared that his co-accused, Bioleta +addao, is the wife of his ac>uaintance, Totoy +addao. 5e said that he and Totoy +addao sometimes drank together at the neighborhood store. This closeness, however, did not eEtend to Bioleta, TotoyDs wife.F11G .ccused-appellant Bioleta +addao, a %0-year old rice vendor, claimed that on December 0, 1((0, she was at her house at Daang "akal, )andaluyong City where she lived with her husband and five /01 children, namely, .rvy, aged 1=, .r4ay, aged -, the twins !aymond and !aynan, aged 0, and <ason, aged %. That day, accusedappellant woke up at 02%= in the morning and bought pan de sal for her childrenDs breakfast. 5er husband, Totoy, a housepainter, had left for 3angasinan five days earlier. ,he woke her children and bathed them. 5er eldest son, .rvy, left for school at &2'0 ..). Ten minutes later, she carried her youngest son, <ayson, and accompanied .r4ay to school. ,he left the twins at home leaving the door open. .fter seeing .r4ay off, she and <ayson remained standing in front of the school soaking in the sun for about thirty minutes. Then they headed for home. .long the way, they passed the artesian well to fetch water. ,he was pumping water when a man clad in short pants and denim 4acket suddenly appeared and grabbed her left wrist. The man pulled her and took her to her house. ,he found out later that the man was 36% )anlangit. Anside her house were her co-accused Doria and three /%1 other persons. They asked her about a boE on top of the table. This was the first time she saw the boE. The boE was closed and tied with a piece of green straw. The men opened the boE and showed her its contents. ,he said she did not know anything about the boE and its contents. .ccused-appellant Bioleta +addao confirmed that her co-accused Florencio Doria was a friend of her husband, and that her husband never returned to their house after he left for 3angasinan. ,he denied the charge against her and Doria and the allegation that marked bills were found in her person.F1 G .fter trial, the !egional Trial Court, "ranch 10&, 3asig City convicted the accused-appellants. The trial court found the eEistence of an *organi@edNsyndicated crime group* and sentenced both accused-appellants to death and pay a fine of 30==,===.== each. The dispositive portion of the decision reads as follows2 *95;!;F6!;, the guilt of accused, F86!;$CA6 D6!A. y "68.D6 L *<un* and BA68;T. +.DD.6 y C.T.). L *$eneth* having been established beyond reasonable doubt, they are both C6$BACT;D of the present charge against them. .ccording to the amendatory provisions of ,ec. 1% of !epublic .ct $o. #&0( which cover violations of ,ec. ' of !epublic .ct $o. &' 0 and which was eEhaustively

discussed in 3eople v. ,imon, %' ,C!. 000, the penalty imposable in this case is reclusion perpetua to death and a fine ranging from five hundred thousand pesos to ten million pesos. Taking into consideration, however, the provisions of ,ec. %, also of !epublic .ct $o. #&0( which eEplicitly state that2 DThe maEimum penalty shall be imposed if the offense was committed by any person who belongs to an organi@edNsyndicated crime group. .n organi@edNsyndicated crime group means a group of two or more persons collaborating, confederating or mutually helping one another for purposes of gain in the commission of any crime.D the Court is hereby constrained to sentence /hereby sentences1 said F86!;$CA6 D6!A. y "68.D6 L *<un* and BA68;T. +.DD.6 y C.T.). L *$eneth* to D;.T5 and to pay a fine of Five 5undred Thousand 3esos /30==,===.==1 each without subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency and to pay the costs. The confiscated mari4uana bricks /#,&'1.=- grams1 shall be turned over to the Dangerous Drugs "oard, $"A for destruction in accordance with law. 8et a Commitment 6rder be issued for the transfer of accused D6!A. from the )andaluyong City <ail to the $ew "ilibid 3risons, )untinlupa City and also for accused +.DD.6 for her transfer to the Correctional Anstitute for 9omen, )andaluyong City. 8et the entire records of this case be forwarded immediately to the ,upreme Court for mandatory review. ,6 6!D;!;D.*F1%G "efore this Court, accused-appellant Doria assigns two errors, thus2 I. T5; C6:!T . I:6 +!.B;87 ;!!;D A$ +ABA$+ 9;A+5T T6 T5; T;,TA)6$7 6F T5; 9AT$;,,;, F6! T5; 3!6,;C:TA6$ 95;$ T5;A! T;,TA)6$A;, 9;!; ,56T 9AT5 DA,C!;3.$CA;,, A$C6$,A,T;$CA;, .$D T5.T T5; C6!3:, D;8ACTA 6F T5; ).!A<:.$. .88;+;D87 T.M;$ F!6) .33;88.$T 9., $6T 36,ATAB;87 AD;$TAFA;D "7 T5; 36,;:!-":7;!. II. T5; C6:!T . I:6 +!.B;87 ;!!;D A$ .D)ATTA$+ ., ;BAD;$C; T5; ).!A<:.$. F!:ATA$+, F6:$D A$,AD; T5; C.!T6$ "6O ., T5;,; 9;!; 6"T.A$;D T5!6:+5 . 9.!!.$T8;,, ,;.!C5 .$D D6;, $6T C6); 9AT5A$ T5; 38.A$ BA;9 D6CT!A$;.*F1'G .ccused-appellant Bioleta +addao contends2 I. T5; 869;! C6:!T ;!!;D A$ FA$DA$+ .33;88.$T +:A8T7 D;,3AT; T5; A$C!;DA"A8AT7 6F T5; 368AC; B;!,A6$ 6F T5; ).$$;! T5; .88;+;D ":7-":,T ., C6$D:CT;D.

II. T5; 3$3 6FFAC;!,D B;!,A6$, ., T6 95;!; T5; ":7-":,T )6$;7 C.); F!6) .!; A$C6$,A,T;$T 9AT5 6$; .$6T5;! .$D .8,6 !;;M, 9AT5 A$C!;DA"A8AT7. III. T5; 869;! C6:!T ;!!;D A$ FA$DA$+ .33;88.$T +:A8T7 .$D ,;$T;$CA$+ 5;! T6 D;.T5 D;,3AT; T5; ).$AF;,T87 A!!;C6$CA8."8; A$C6$,A,T;$CA;, A$ T5; B;!,A6$, 6F T5; 368AC; ., T6 569 .$D "7 956) T5; .88;+;D ":7-":,T )6$;7 9., !;C6B;!;D F!6) 5;!, 95AC5 A$ C6$,;I:;$C; !;,:8T, A$ T5; ;BAD;$C;, 6F !;T!A;B.8 F!6) 5;! 6F T5; ,.);, $;":86:,, .T ";,T, $A8, .T 96!,T. I). T5; 869;! C6:!T ;!!;D A$ :3568DA$+ T5; B.8ADAT7 6F T5; 9.!!.$T8;,, ,;.!C5 8;.DA$+ T6 T5; ,;AC:!; 6F T5; ).!A<:.$. .88;+;D87 F6:$D A$,AD; T5; 56:,; 6F .CC:,;D.33;88.$T.*F10G The assigned errors involve two principal issues2 /11 the validity of the buybust operation in the apprehension of accused-appellant Doria? and / 1 the validity of the warrantless arrest of accused-appellant +addao, the search of her person and house, and the admissibility of the pieces of evidence obtained therefrom. .ccused-appellants were caught by the police in a buy-bust operation. . buybust operation is a form of entrapment employed by peace officers as an effective way of apprehending a criminal in the act of the commission of an offense. F1&G ;ntrapment has received 4udicial sanction when undertaken with due regard to constitutional and legal safeguards.F1#G ;ntrapment was unknown in common law. At is a 4udicially created twentiethcentury .merican doctrine that evolved from the increasing use of informers and undercover agents in the detection of crimes, particularly li>uor and narcotics offenses.F1-G ;ntrapment sprouted from the doctrine of estoppel and the public interest in the formulation and application of decent standards in the enforcement of criminal law.F1(G At also took off from a spontaneous moral revulsion against using the powers of government to beguile innocent but ductile persons into lapses that they might otherwise resist.F =G An the .merican 4urisdiction, the term *entrapment* has a generally negative meaning because it is understood as the inducement of one to commit a crime not contemplated by him, for the mere purpose of instituting a criminal prosecution against him.F 1G The classic definition of entrapment is that articulated by <ustice !oberts in Sorrells v. *nited States,F G the first ,upreme Court decision to acknowledge the concept2 *;ntrapment is the conception and planning of an offense by an officer, and his procurement of its commission by one who would not have perpetrated it eEcept for the trickery, persuasion or fraud of the officer.* F %G At consists of two / 1 elements2 /a1 acts of persuasion, trickery, or fraud carried out by law enforcement officers or the agents to induce a defendant to commit a crime? and /b1 the origin of the criminal design in the minds of the government officials rather than

that of the innocent defendant, such that the crime is the product of the creative activity of the law enforcement officer. F 'G At is recogni@ed that in every arrest, there is a certain amount of entrapment used to outwit the persons violating or about to violate the law. $ot every deception is forbidden. The type of entrapment the law forbids is the inducing of another to violate the law, the *seduction* of an otherwise innocent person into a criminal career.F 0G 9here the criminal intent originates in the mind of the entrapping person and the accused is lured into the commission of the offense charged in order to prosecute him, there is entrapment and no conviction may be had. F &G 9here, however, the criminal intent originates in the mind of the accused and the criminal offense is completed, the fact that a person acting as a decoy for the state, or public officials furnished the accused an opportunity for commission of the offense, or that the accused is aided in the commission of the crime in order to secure the evidence necessary to prosecute him, there is no entrapment and the accused must be convicted.F #G The law tolerates the use of decoys and other artifices to catch a criminal. ;ntrapment is recogni@ed as a valid defense F -G that can be raised by an accused and partakes of the nature of a confession and avoidance. F (G At is a positive defense. Anitially, an accused has the burden of providing sufficient evidence that the government induced him to commit the offense. 6nce established, the burden shifts to the government to show otherwise. F%=G 9hen entrapment is raised as a defense, .merican federal courts and a ma4ority of state courts use the *sub4ective* or *origin of intent* test laid down in Sorrells v. *nited StatesF%1G to determine whether entrapment actually occurred. The focus of the in>uiry is on the accusedDs predisposition to commit the offense charged, his state of mind and inclination before his initial eEposure to government agents. F% G .ll relevant facts such as the accusedDs mental and character traits, his past offenses, activities, his eagerness in committing the crime, his reputation, etc., are considered to assess his state of mind before the crime.F%%G The predisposition test emphasi@es the accusedDs propensity to commit the offense rather than the officerDs misconduct F%'G and reflects an attempt to draw a line between a *trap for the unwary innocent and the trap for the unwary criminal.*F%0G Af the accused was found to have been ready and willing to commit the offense at any favorable opportunity, the entrapment defense will fail even if a police agent used an unduly persuasive inducement. F%&G ,ome states, however, have adopted the *ob4ective* test.F%#G This test was first authoritatively laid down in the case of +ross"an v. StateF%-G rendered by the ,upreme Court of .laska. ,everal other states have subse>uently adopted the test by 4udicial pronouncement or legislation. 5ere, the court considers the nature of the police activity involved and the propriety of police conduct.F%(G The in>uiry is focused on the inducements used by government agents, on police conduct, not on the accused and his predisposition to commit the crime. For the goal of the defense is to deter unlawful police conduct. F'=G The test of entrapment is whether the conduct of the law enforcement agent was likely to induce a normally law-abiding person, other than one who is ready and willing, to commit the offense? F'1G for purposes of this test, it is presumed that a lawabiding person would normally resist the temptation to commit a crime that is

presented by the simple opportunity to act unlawfully. F' G 6fficial conduct that merely offers such an opportunity is permissible, but overbearing conduct, such as badgering, ca4oling or importuning,F'%G or appeals to sentiments such as pity, sympathy, friendship or pleas of desperate illness, are not. F''G 3roponents of this test believe that courts must refuse to convict an entrapped accused not because his conduct falls outside the legal norm but rather because, even if his guilt has been established, the methods employed on behalf of the government to bring about the crime *cannot be countenanced.* To some eEtent, this reflects the notion that the courts should not become tainted by condoning law enforcement improprieties. F'0G 5ence, the transactions leading up to the offense, the interaction between the accused and law enforcement officer and the accusedDs response to the officerDs inducements, the gravity of the crime, and the difficulty of detecting instances of its commission are considered in 4udging what the effect of the officerDs conduct would be on a normal person.F'&G "oth the *sub4ective* and *ob4ective* approaches have been critici@ed and ob4ected to. At is claimed that the *sub4ective* test creates an *anything goes* rule, i.e., if the court determines that an accused was predisposed to commit the crime charged, no level of police deceit, badgering or other unsavory practices will be deemed impermissible.F'#G Delving into the accusedDs character and predisposition obscures the more important task of 4udging police behavior and pre4udices the accused more generally. At ignores the possibility that no matter what his past crimes and general disposition were, the accused might not have committed the particular crime unless confronted with inordinate inducements.F'-G 6n the other eEtreme, the purely *ob4ective* test eliminates entirely the need for considering a particular accusedDs predisposition. 5is predisposition, at least if known by the police, may have an important bearing upon the >uestion of whether the conduct of the police and their agents was proper.F'(G The undisputed fact that the accused was a dangerous and chronic offender or that he was a shrewd and active member of a criminal syndicate at the time of his arrest is relegated to irrelevancy. F0=G 6b4ections to the two tests gave birth to hybrid approaches to entrapment. ,ome states in the :nited ,tates now combine both the *sub4ective* and *ob4ective* tests.F01G An Cru, v. State,F0 G the Florida ,upreme Court declared that the permissibility of police conduct must first be determined. Af this ob4ective test is satisfied, then the analysis turns to whether the accused was predisposed to commit the crime.F0%G An Baca v. State,F0'G the $ew )eEico ,upreme Court modified the stateDs entrapment analysis by holding that *a criminal defendant may successfully assert a defense of entrapment, either by showing lack of predisposition to commit the crime for which he is charged, or, that the police eEceeded the standards of proper investigation.F00G The hybrid approaches combine and apply the *ob4ective* and *sub4ective* tests alternatively or concurrently. .s early as 1(1=, this Court has eEamined the conduct of law enforcers while apprehending the accused caught in flagrante delicto. An *nited States v. Phelps, F0&G we ac>uitted the accused from the offense of smoking opium after finding that the government employee, a "A! personnel, actually induced him to commit the crime in

order to prosecute him. ,mith, the "A! agent, testified that 3helpsD apprehension came after he overheard 3helps in a saloon say that he liked smoking opium on some occasions. ,mithDs testimony was disregarded. 9e accorded significance to the fact that it was ,mith who went to the accused three times to convince him to look for an opium den where both of them could smoke this drug. F0#G The conduct of the "A! agent was condemned as *most reprehensible.* F0-G An People v. !bella,F0(G we ac>uitted the accused of the crime of selling eEplosives after eEamining the testimony of the apprehending police officer who pretended to be a merchant. The police officer offered *a tempting price, EEE a very high one* causing the accused to sell the eEplosives. 9e found that there was inducement, *direct, persistent and effective* by the police officer and that outside of his testimony, there was no evidence sufficient to convict the accused. F&=G An People v. -ua Chu and *. Se /ieng, F&1G we convicted the accused after finding that there was no inducement on the part of the law enforcement officer. 9e stated that the Customs secret serviceman smoothed the way for the introduction of opium from 5ongkong to Cebu after the accused had already planned its importation and ordered said drug. 9e ruled that the apprehending officer did not induce the accused to import opium but merely entrapped him by pretending to have an understanding with the Collector of Customs of Cebu to better assure the sei@ure of the prohibited drug and the arrest of the surreptitious importers.F& G At was also in the same case of People v. -ua Chu and *. Se /ieng F&%G we first laid down the distinction between entrapment vis-a-vis instigation or inducement. Iuoting 1& Corpus <uris,F&'G we held2 *;$T!.3);$T .$D A$,TA+.TA6$. -- 9hile it has been said that the practice of entrapping persons into crime for the purpose of instituting criminal prosecutions is to be deplored, and while instigation, as distinguished from mere entrapment, has often been condemned and has sometimes been held to prevent the act from being criminal or punishable, the general rule is that it is no defense to the perpetrator of a crime that facilities for its commission were purposely placed in his way, or that the criminal act was done at the Ddecoy solicitationD of persons seeking to eEpose the criminal, or that detectives feigning complicity in the act were present and apparently assisting in its commission. ;specially is this true in that class of cases where the offense is one of a kind habitually committed, and the solicitation merely furnishes evidence of a course of conduct. )ere deception by the detective will not shield defendant, if the offense was committed by him, free from the influence or instigation of the detective. The fact that an agent of an owner acts as a supposed confederate of a thief is no defense to the latter in a prosecution for larceny, provided the original design was formed independently of such agent? and where a person approached by the thief as his confederate notifies the owner or the public authorities, and, being authorised by them to do so, assists the thief in carrying out the plan, the larceny is nevertheless committed. At is generally held that it is no defense to a prosecution for an illegal sale of li>uor that the purchase was made by a Dspotter,D detective, or hired informer? but there are cases holding the contrary.* F&0G

The distinction above->uoted was reiterated in two / 1 decisions of the Court of .ppeals. An People v. +alicia,F&&G the appellate court declared that *there is a wide difference between entrapment and instigation.* The instigator practically induces the would-be accused into the commission of the offense and himself becomes a coprincipal. An entrapment, ways and means are resorted to by the peace officer for the purpose of trapping and capturing the lawbreaker in the eEecution of his criminal plan.F&#G An People v. /an /iong,F&-G the Court of .ppeals further declared that *entrapment is no bar to the prosecution and conviction of the lawbreaker.* F&(G The pronouncement of the Court of .ppeals in People v. +alicia was affirmed by this Court in People v. /iu *a.F#=G ;ntrapment, we further held, is not contrary to public policy. At is instigation that is deemed contrary to public policy and illegal. F#1G At can thus be seen that the concept of entrapment in the .merican 4urisdiction is similar to instigation or inducement in 3hilippine 4urisprudence. ;ntrapment in the 3hilippines is not a defense available to the accused. At is instigation that is a defense and is considered an absolutory cause. F# G To determine whether there is entrapment or instigation, our courts have mainly eEamined the conduct of the apprehending officers, not the predisposition of the accused to commit the crime. The *ob4ective* test first applied in *nited States v. Phelps has been followed in a series of similar cases.F#%G $evertheless, adopting the *ob4ective* approach has not precluded us from likewise applying the *sub4ective* test. An People v. Boholst,F#'G we applied both tests by eEamining the conduct of the police officers in a buy-bust operation and admitting evidence of the accusedDs membership with the notorious and dreaded ,igue-,igue ,putnik +ang. 9e also considered accusedDs previous convictions of other crimesF#0G and held that his opprobrious past and membership with the dreaded gang strengthened the stateDs evidence against him. Conversely, the evidence that the accused did not sell or smoke mari4uana and did not have any criminal record was likewise admitted in People v. 0utucF#&G thereby sustaining his defense that led to his ac>uittal. The distinction between entrapment and instigation has proven to be very material in anti-narcotics operations. An recent years, it has become common practice for law enforcement officers and agents to engage in buy-bust operations and other entrapment procedures in apprehending drug offenders. .nti-narcotics laws, like anti-gambling laws are regulatory statutes. F##G They are rules of convenience designed to secure a more orderly regulation of the affairs of society, and their violation gives rise to crimes "ala prohibita.F#-G They are not the traditional type of criminal law such as the law of murder, rape, theft, arson, etc. that deal with crimes "ala in seor those inherently wrongful and immoral.F#(G 8aws defining crimes "ala prohibita condemn behavior directed, not against particular individuals, but against public order.F-=G Biolation is deemed a wrong against society as a whole and is generally unattended with any particular harm to a definite person. F-1G These offenses are carried on in secret and the violators resort to many devices and subterfuges to avoid detection. At is rare for any member of the public, no matter how furiously he condemns acts "ala prohibita, to be willing to assist in the enforcement of the law. At is necessary, therefore, that government in detecting and

punishing violations of these laws, rely, not upon the voluntary action of aggrieved individuals, but upon the diligence of its own officials. This means that the police must be present at the time the offenses are committed either in an undercover capacity or through informants, spies or stool pigeons.F- G Though considered essential by the police in enforcing vice legislation, the confidential informant system breeds abominable abuse. Fre>uently, a person who accepts payment from the police in the apprehension of drug peddlers and gamblers also accept payment from these persons who deceive the police. The informant himself may be a drug addict, pickpocket, pimp, or other petty criminal. For whatever noble purpose it serves, the spectacle that government is secretly mated with the underworld and uses underworld characters to help maintain law and order is not an inspiring one.F-%G ;>ually odious is the bitter reality of dealing with unscrupulous, corrupt and eEploitative law enforcers. 8ike the informant, unscrupulous law enforcersD motivations are legion-- harassment, eEtortion, vengeance, blackmail, or a desire to report an accomplishment to their superiors. This Court has taken 4udicial notice of this ugly reality in a number of casesF-'G where we observed that it is a common "odus operandi of corrupt law enforcers to prey on weak and hapless persons, particularly unsuspecting provincial hicks.F-0G The use of shady underworld characters as informants, the relative ease with which illegal drugs may be planted in the hands or property of trusting and ignorant persons, and the imposed secrecy that inevitably shrouds all drug deals have compelled this Court to be eEtra-vigilant in deciding drug cases. F-&G Criminal activity is such that stealth and strategy, although necessary weapons in the arsenal of the police officer, become as ob4ectionable police methods as the coerced confession and the unlawful search. .s well put by the ,upreme Court of California in People v. Barra,a,F-#G *F;Gntrapment is a facet of a broader problem. .long with illegal search and sei@ures, wiretapping, false arrest, illegal detention and the third degree, it is a type of lawless enforcement. They all spring from common motivations. ;ach is a substitute for skillful and scientific investigation. ;ach is condoned by the sinister sophism that the end, when dealing with known criminals of the Dcriminal classes,D 4ustifies the employment of illegal means.* F--G At is thus imperative that the presumption, 1uris tantu", of regularity in the performance of official duty by law enforcement agents raised by the ,olicitor +eneral be applied with studied restraint. This presumption should not by itself prevail over the presumption of innocence and the constitutionally-protected rights of the individual.F-(G At is the duty of courts to preserve the purity of their own temple from the prostitution of the criminal law through lawless enforcement. F(=G Courts should not allow themselves to be used as an instrument of abuse and in4ustice lest an innocent person be made to suffer the unusually severe penalties for drug offenses.F(1G 9e therefore stress that the *ob4ective* test in buy-bust operations demands that the details of the purported transaction must be clearly and ade>uately shown. This must start from the initial contact between the poseur-buyer and the pusher, the

offer to purchase, the promise or payment of the consideration until the consummation of the sale by the delivery of the illegal drug sub4ect of the sale. F( G The manner by which the initial contact was made, whether or not through an informant, the offer to purchase the drug, the payment of the *buy-bust* money, and the delivery of the illegal drug, whether to the informant alone or the police officer, must be the sub4ect of strict scrutiny by courts to insure that law-abiding citi@ens are not unlawfully induced to commit an offense. Criminals must be caught but not at all cost. .t the same time, however, eEamining the conduct of the police should not disable courts into ignoring the accusedDs predisposition to commit the crime. Af there is overwhelming evidence of habitual delin>uency, recidivism or plain criminal proclivity, then this must also be considered. Courts should look at all factors to determine the predisposition of an accused to commit an offense in so far as they are relevant to determine the validity of the defense of inducement. An the case at bar, the evidence shows that it was the confidential informant who initially contacted accused-appellant Doria. .t the pre-arranged meeting, the informant was accompanied by 36% )anlangit who posed as the buyer of mari4uana. 36% )anlangit handed the marked money to accused-appellant Doria as advance payment for one /11 kilo of mari4uana. .ccused-appellant Doria was apprehended when he later returned and handed the brick of mari4uana to 36% )anlangit. 36% )anlangit testified in a frank, spontaneous, straighforward and categorical manner and his credibility was not crumpled on cross-eEamination by defense counsel. )oreover, 36% )anlangitDs testimony was corroborated on its material points by ,361 "adua, his back-up security. The non-presentation of the confidential informant is not fatal to the prosecution. Anformants are usually not presented in court because of the need to hide their identity and preserve their invaluable service to the police. F(%G At is well-settled that eEcept when the appellant vehemently denies selling prohibited drugs and there are material inconsistencies in the testimonies of the arresting officers, F('G or there are reasons to believe that the arresting officers had motives to testify falsely against the appellant, F(0G or that only the informant was the poseur-buyer who actually witnessed the entire transaction, F(&G the testimony of the informant may be dispensed with as it will merely be corroborative of the apprehending officersD eyewitness testimonies. F(#G There is no need to present the informant in court where the sale was actually witnessed and ade>uately proved by prosecution witnesses.F(-G The inconsistencies in 36% )anlangitDs and ,361 "aduaDs testimonies and the other police officersD testimonies are minor and do not detract from the veracity and weight of the prosecution evidence. The source of the money for the buy-bust operation is not a critical fact in the case at bar. At is enough that the prosecution proved that money was paid to accused-appellant Doria in consideration of which he sold and delivered the mari4uana. Contrary to accused-appellant DoriaDs claim, the one kilo of mari4uana *sold* by him to 36% )anlangit was actually identified by 36% )anlangit himself before the trial court. .fter appellantsD apprehension, the $arcom agents placed this one /11 brick of mari4uana recovered from appellant Doria inside the carton boE lumping it

together with the ten /1=1 bricks inside. This is why the carton boE contained eleven /111 bricks of mari4uana when brought before the trial court. The one /11 brick recovered from appellant Doria and each of the ten /1=1 bricks, however, were identified and marked in court. Thus2 *.TT7. .!A.,, Counsel for Florencio Doria2 )r. 3olice 6fficer, when you identified that boE,. Tell the court, how were you able to identify that boEK A T123 23 41e bo5 41a4 I brou614 4o 41e 7r28e 9abora4ory :1271 7o"4a2"e# 41e e9e;e" <2e7e3 o= 8ar2>ua"a br27? :e 7o"=237a4e# =ro8 41e 3u3<e74, 32r. I 3lease open it and show those eleven bricks. 3!6,;C:T6! 9itness bringing out from the said boE... .TT7. B.8D;C, Counsel for Bioleta +addao2 7our 5onor, A must protest the line of >uestioning considering the fact that we are now dealing with eleven items when the >uestion posed to the witness was what was handed to him by <unK C6:!T ,o be it. .TT7. .!A., )ay we make it of record that the witness is pulling out item after item from the boE showed to him and brought in front of him. C6:!T $oted. , No: 4e99 41e 7our4, 1o: #2# you ?"o: 41a4 41o3e are 41e e9e;e" br27?3@ 5 5 5. A I 1a;e 8ar?2"63 o" 41e3e e9e;e" br27?3, 32r. I 3oint to the court, where are those markingsK . 5ere, sir, my signature, my initials with the date, sir. 3!6,;C:T6! 9itness showed a white wrapper and pointing to C8) and the signature. I 9hose signature is thatK .TT7 B.8D;C 7our 5onor, may we 4ust limit the in>uiry to the basic >uestion of the fiscal as to what was handed to him by the accused <un, your 5onorK 3!6,;C:T6! 7our 5onor, there is already a ruling by this 5onorable Court, your 5onor, despite reconsideration. C6:!T 8et the prosecution do its own thing and leave the appreciation of what it has done to the court. .TT7. B.8D;C 9e submit, your 5onor. A T123 br27? 23 41e o"e 41a4 :a3 1a"#e# 4o 8e by 41e 3u3<e74 /u", 32r. +O$RT (1y #o you ?"o: 41a4 41a4 23 41e 412"6@ Are you 3ure 41a4 23 "o4 42?oy@ A %e3, your Ho"or. , (1a4 8a?e3 you 3o 3ure@ A I a8 3ure 41a4 4123 23 41e o"e, your Ho"or. T123 23 41e E512b24 A :1271 I 8ar?e# be=ore I brou614 24 4o 41e P++L, your Ho"or. , (1a4 are you 3ure o=@ A I a8 3ure 41a4 4123 23 41e br27? 41a4 :a3 62;e" 4o 8e by o"e a92a3 /u", 32r.

, A

(1a4 8a?e3 you 3o 3ure@ !e7au3e I 8ar?e# 24 :241 8y o:" 2"242a93 be=ore 62;2"6 24 4o 41e 2";e3426a4or a"# be=ore :e brou614 24 4o 41e P++L, your Ho"or. E E E. PROSE+$TOR May :e reAue34 41a4 a 4a6 be <9a7e# o" 4123 :124e <9a3427 ba6 a"# 4123 be 8ar?e# a3 E512b24 *@ +O$RT Mar? 24 a3 E512b24 *. I To stress, who made the entries of this date, ;Ehibit *.* then the other letters and figures on this plasticK . This one, the signature, A made the signature, the date and the time and this ;Ehibit *..* I 5ow about this oneK . A donDt know who made this marking, sir. 3!6,;C:T6! )ay it be of record that this was 4ust entered this morning. I A am asking you about this *itim* and not the *asul.* . This C8), the date and the time and the ;Ehibit *.,* A was the one who made these markings, sir. 3!6,;C:T6! )ay we place on record that the one that was enclosed... .TT7. .!A., 7our 5onor, there are also entries included in that enclosure where it appears D-%('-(0, also ;Ehibit *.,* etc. etc., that was not pointed to by the witness. A want to make it of record that there are other entries included in the enclosure. C6:!T $oted. The court saw it. , No:, a"# 4123 a99e6e# br27? o= 8ar2>ua"a :241 a <2e7e o= <a<er, :241 a "e:3<a<er :ra<<2"6 :241 a <2e7e o= <a<er 2"32#e :1271 rea#3' *&39B& 9., E512b24 A, 970 6ra83 SSL be 8ar?e# a3 our E512b24 *&2@ +O$RT Ta6 24. Mar? 24. , T123 <ar427u9ar e512b24 41a4 you 2#e"42=2e#, 41e :ra<<er a"# 41e 7o"4e"43 :a3 62;e" 4o you by :1o8@ A I4 :a3 62;e" 4o 8e by 3u3<e74 /u", 32r. , (1erea4@ A A4 41e 7or"er o= !ou9e;ar# a"# /a72"4o S4., 32r. , Ho: abou4 41e o41er 24e83 41a4 you :ere ab9e 4o re7o;er@ 5 5 5. A T1e3e o41er 8ar2>ua"a br27?3, be7au3e #ur2"6 our =o99o:&u<, be7au3e a77or#2"6 4o /u" 41e 8o"ey :1271 I 6a;e 128 :a3 2" 41e 1a"#3 o= Ne"e41 a"# 3o :e <ro7ee#e# 4o 41e 1ou3e o= Ne"e41, 32r. 5 5 5.
F((G

mari4uana after he *paid* 31,&==.== strains credulity. .ppellant cannot capitali@e on the circumstance that the money and the mari4uana in the case at bar did not change hands under the usual *kaliwaan* system. There is no rule of law which re>uires that in *buy-bust* operations there must be a simultaneous eEchange of the marked money and the prohibited drug between the poseur-buyer and the pusher. F1=1G .gain, the decisive fact is that the poseur-buyer received the mari4uana from the accusedappellant.F1= G 9e also hold that the warrantless arrest of accused-appellant Doria is not unlawful. 9arrantless arrests are allowed in three instances as provided by ,ection 0 of !ule 11% of the 1(-0 !ules on Criminal 3rocedure, to wit2 *Sec. 2. !rrest without warrant3 when lawful. -- . peace officer or a private person may, without a warrant, arrest a person2 CaD (1e", 2" 123 <re3e"7e, 41e <er3o" 4o be arre34e# 1a3 7o88244e#, 23 a74ua99y 7o882442"6, or 23 a44e8<42"6 4o 7o8824 a" o==e"3eE CbD (1e" a" o==e"3e 1a3 2" =a74 >u34 bee" 7o88244e#, a"# 1e 1a3 <er3o"a9 ?"o:9e#6e o= =a743 2"#27a42"6 41a4 41e <er3o" 4o be arre34e# 1a3 7o88244e# 24E a"# /c1 9hen the person to be arrested is a prisoner who escaped from a penal establishment or place where he is serving final 4udgment or temporarily confined while his case is pending, or has escaped while being transferred from one confinement to another. E E E.*F1=%G :nder ,ection 0 /a1, as above->uoted, a person may be arrested without a warrant if he *has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense.* .ppellant Doria was caught in the act of committing an offense. 9hen an accused is apprehended in flagrante delicto as a result of a buy-bust operation, the police are not only authori@ed but duty-bound to arrest him even without a warrant.F1='G The warrantless arrest of appellant +addao, the search of her person and residence, and the sei@ure of the boE of mari4uana and marked bills are different matters. 6ur Constitution proscribes search and sei@ure without a 4udicial warrant and any evidence obtained without such warrant is inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding.F1=0G The rule is, however, not absolute. ,earch and sei@ure may be made without a warrant and the evidence obtained therefrom may be admissible in the following instances2F1=&G /11 search incident to a lawful arrest? F1=#G / 1 search of a moving motor vehicle?F1=-G/%1 search in violation of customs laws? F1=(G /'1 sei@ure of evidence in plain view?F11=G /01 when the accused himself waives his right against unreasonable searches and sei@ures.F111G The prosecution admits that appellant +addao was arrested without a warrant of arrest and the search and sei@ure of the boE of mari4uana and the marked bills were

The first brick identified by 3=% )anlangit was the brick of mari4uana *given to FhimG by suspect <un* at the corner of "oulevard and <acinto ,treets. This brick, including the newspaper and white plastic wrapping were marked as ;Ehibits *D,* *D-1,* and *D- * and described as weighing nine hundred seventy /(#=1 grams.F1==G 9e also re4ect appellantDs submission that the fact that 36% )anlangit and his team waited for almost one hour for appellant Doria to give them the one kilo of

likewise made without a search warrant. At is claimed, however, that the warrants were not necessary because the arrest was made in *hot pursuit* and the search was an incident to her lawful arrest. To be lawful, the warrantless arrest of appellant +addao must fall under any of the three /%1 instances enumerated in ,ection 0 of !ule 11% of the 1(-0 !ules on Criminal 3rocedure as afore>uoted. The direct testimony of 36% )anlangit, the arresting officer, however shows otherwise2 *.TT7 B.8D;C, Counsel for appellant +addao2 9e submit at this 4uncture, your 5onor, that there will be no basis for that >uestion. I This particular eEhibit that you identified, the wrapper and the contents was given to you by whomK . At was given to me by suspect <un, sir. I 9hereatK . .t the corner of "oulevard and <acinto ,treet, sir. I 5ow about the other items that you were able to recoverK .TT7. B.8D;C2 9e submit at this 4uncture, your 5onor, that there will be no basis for that >uestion. C6:!T There is. .nswer. . These other mari4uana bricks, be7au3e #ur2"6 our =o99o:&u<, be7au3e a77or#2"6 4o /u" 41e 8o"ey :1271 I 6a;e 128 :a3 2" 41e 1a"#3 o= Ne"e41 a"# 3o :e <ro7ee#e# 4o 41e 1ou3e o= Ne"e41, 32r. , (1erea4@ A A4 *aa"6 !a?a9 "ear 41e 7r28e 37e"e a4 S1a: !ou9e;ar#, 32r. , A"# :1a4 1a<<e"e# u<o" arr2;a9 41erea4@ A (e 3a: a92a3 Ne"e41 2"32#e 41e 1ou3e a"# :e a3?e# 128 4o 62;e u3 41e buy&bu34 8o"ey, 32r. I 7ou mentioned *himK* A Her, 32r. (e a3?e# 1er 4o 62;e u3 41e 8o"ey, 41e 8ar?e# 8o"ey :1271 /u" 6a;e 1er, 32r. I .nd what happenedK . .t this instance, it was ,361 "adua who can testify regarding this buy-bust money, sir. E E E.*F11 G ,361 "adua testified on cross-eEamination that2 , (1a4 :a3 your 2"4e"42o" 2" 6o2"6 4o 41e 1ou3e o= A92"6 Ne"e41@ A To arre34 1er, 32r. , !u4 41e =a74 23, Mr. (24"e33, :1e" you rea71e# 41e 1ou3e o= A92"6 Ne"e41, A92"6 Ne"e41 :a3 41ere@ A %e3, 32r. , A3 =ar a3 you 7a" 3ee, 31e :a3 >u34 2"32#e 1er 1ou3e@ A I 3a: 1er ou432#e, 32r. , S1e :a3 =e4712"6 :a4er a3 a 8a44er o= =a74@ A S1e :a3 F3a ba"#a"6 <o3o.G , +arry2"6 a baby@

A ,

No, 32r. A4 41a4 <ar427u9ar 428e :1e" you rea71e# 41e 1ou3e o= A92"6 Ne"e41 a"# 3a: 1er ou432#e 41e 1ou3e, 31e :a3 "o4 7o882442"6 a"y 7r28e, 31e :a3 >u34 ou432#e 41e 1ou3e@ A No, 32r. , S1e :a3 "o4 abou4 4o 7o8824 a"y 7r28e be7au3e 31e :a3 >u34 ou432#e 41e 1ou3e #o2"6 1er #a29y 71ore3. A8 I 7orre74@ A I >u34 3a: 1er ou432#e, 32r. , A"# a4 41a4 <o2"4 2" 428e you a9rea#y :a"4e# 4o arre34 1er. T1a4 23 7orre74, 23 24 "o4@ A %e3, 32r. I $ow, if any memory of your testimony is correct, according to you ,361 )anlangit approached herK . 36% )anlangit, sir. I 7ou did not approach her because 36% )anlangit approached herK . 7es, sir. I During all the time that this confrontation, arrest or whatever by ,36% )anlangit was taking place, you were 4ust in the side linesK . A was 4ust watching, sir. I ,o you were 4ust an on-looker to what )anlangit was doing, because precisely according to you your role in this buy-bust operation was as a back-upK . 7es, sir. I 9ho got the alleged mari4uana from inside the house of )rs. $enethK . 36% )anlangit, sir. I )anlangit got the mari4uanaK . 7es, sir. I .nd the money from .ling $enethK . A donDt know, sir. I 7ou did not even know who got the money from .ling $enethK 3!6,;C:T6!2 There is no basis for this >uestion, your 5onor. )oney, thereDs no testimony on that. .TT7. B.8D;C2 A was asking him precisely. 3!6,;C:T6!2 $o basis. C6:!T2 ,ustained. I .lright. A will ask you a >uestion and A eEpect an honest answer. .ccording to the records, the amount of 31,&==.== was recovered from the person of .ling $eneth. ThatDs rightK . 7es, sir, the buy-bust money. I 9hat you are now saying for certain and for the record is the fact that you were not the one who retrieved the money from .ling $eneth, it was )anlangit maybeK

. I . I

A saw it, sir. At was )anlangit who got the money from .ling $enethK The buy-bust money was recovered from the house of .ling $eneth, sir. At was taken from the house of .ling $eneth, not from the person of .ling $eneth. As that what you are trying to tell the CourtK . $o, sir. .TT7. B.8D;C2 A am through with this witness, your 5onor.*F11%G .ccused-appellant +addao was not caught red-handed during the buy-bust operation to give ground for her arrest under ,ection 0 /a1 of !ule 11%. ,he was not committing any crime. Contrary to the finding of the trial court, there was no occasion at all for appellant +addao to flee from the policemen to 4ustify her arrest in *hot pursuit.*F11'G An fact, she was going about her daily chores when the policemen pounced on her. $either could the arrest of appellant +addao be 4ustified under the second instance of !ule 11%. *3ersonal knowledge* of facts in arrests without warrant under ,ection 0 /b1 of !ule 11% must be based upon *probable cause* which means an *actual belief or reasonable grounds of suspicion.*F110G The grounds of suspicion are reasonable when, in the absence of actual belief of the arresting officers, the suspicion that the person to be arrested is probably guilty of committing the offense, is based on actual facts, i.e., supported by circumstances sufficiently strong in themselves to create the probable cause of guilt of the person to be arrested. F11&G . reasonable suspicion therefore must be founded on probable cause, coupled with good faith on the part of the peace officers making the arrest.F11#G .ccused-appellant +addao was arrested solely on the basis of the alleged identification made by her co-accused. 36% )anlangit, however, declared in his direct eEamination that appellant Doria named his co-accused in response to his /36% )anlangitDs1 >uery as to where the marked 8o"ey was.F11-G .ppellant Doria did not point to appellant +addao as his associate in the drug business, but as the person with whom he left the marked bills. This identification does not necessarily lead to the conclusion that appellant +addao conspired with her co-accused in pushing drugs. .ppellant Doria may have left the money in her house, F11(G with or without her knowledge, with or without any conspiracy. ,ave for accused-appellant DoriaDs word, the $arcom agents had no reasonable grounds to believe that she was engaged in drug pushing. Af there is no showing that the person who effected the warrantless arrest had, in his own right, knowledge of facts implicating the person arrested to the perpetration of a criminal offense, the arrest is legally ob4ectionable. F1 =G ,ince the warrantless arrest of accused-appellant +addao was illegal, it follows that the search of her person and home and the subse>uent sei@ure of the marked bills and mari4uana cannot be deemed legal as an incident to her arrest. This brings us to the >uestion of whether the trial court correctly found that the boE of mari4uana was in plain view, making its warrantless sei@ure valid. 6b4ects falling in plain view of an officer who has a right to be in the position to have that view are sub4ect to sei@ure even without a search warrant and may be

introduced in evidence.F1 1G The *plain view* doctrine applies when the following re>uisites concur2 /a1 the law enforcement officer in search of the evidence has a prior 4ustification for an intrusion or is in a position from which he can view a particular area? /b1 the discovery of the evidence in plain view is inadvertent? /c1 it is immediately apparent to the officer that the item he observes may be evidence of a crime, contraband or otherwise sub4ect to sei@ure. F1 G The law enforcement officer must lawfully make an initial intrusion or properly be in a position from which he can particularly view the area. F1 %G An the course of such lawful intrusion, he came inadvertently across a piece of evidence incriminating the accused. F1 'G The ob4ect must be open to eye and handF1 0G and its discovery inadvertent.F1 &G At is clear that an ob4ect is in plain view if the ob4ect itself is plainly eEposed to sight. The difficulty arises when the ob4ect is inside a closed container. 9here the ob4ect sei@ed was inside a closed package, the ob4ect itself is not in plain view and therefore cannot be sei@ed without a warrant. 5owever, if the package proclaims its contents, whether by its distinctive configuration, its transparency, or if its contents are obvious to an observer, then the contents are in plain view and may be sei@ed. F1 #G An other words, if the package is such that an eEperienced observer could infer from its appearance that it contains the prohibited article, then the article is deemed in plain view.F1 -G At must be immediately apparent to the police that the items that they observe may be evidence of a crime, contraband or otherwise sub4ect to sei@ure.
F1 (G

36% )anlangit, the $arcom agent who found the boE, testified on crosseEamination as follows2 *.TT7. B.8D;C2 ,o here we are. 9hen you and "adua arrived, .ling $eneth was inside the houseK . 7es, sir. I "adua demanded from .ling $eneth the buy-bust moneyK . 7es, sir. , A4 41a4 <ar427u9ar 2"34a"7e, you 3a: 41e 7ar4o"@ A %e3, 32r. , T123 7ar4o", a77or#2"6 4o you :a3 u"#er a 4ab9e@ A %e3, 32r, #2"2"6 4ab9e. , I "o427e# 41a4 4123 7ar4o" 1a3 a 7o;er@ A %e3, 32r. , I a3? you :ere 41e =9a<3 o= 41e 7o;er ra23e# or 79o3e#@ A I4 :a3 o<e", 32r. No4 92?e 41a4. C6:!T +o down there. ,how to the court. A$T;!3!;T;! 9itness went down the witness stand and approached a carton boE. . 8ike this, sir. 3!6,;C:T6! Can we describe itK .TT7. B.8D;C

7es. PROSE+$TOR O"e =9a< 23 2"32#e a"# 41e o41er =9a< 23 34a"#2"6 a"# :241 41e 7o"4e"43 ;232b9e. +O$RT No4e#. , A4 4123 >u"74ure, you :e"4 2"32#e 41e 1ou3e@ A %e3, 32r. , A"# 6o4 1o9# o= 4123 7ar4o"@ A %e3, 32r. , *2# you 8e"42o" a"y412"6 4o A92"6 Ne"e41@ A I a3?e# 1er, :1a4G3 4123... I $o, no. no. did you mention anything to .ling $eneth before getting the cartonK . A think it was "adua who accosted .ling $eneth regarding the buy-bust money and he asked *,a iyo galing ang mari4uanang ito, nasaan ang buybust money naminK* sir. I )aking reference to the mari4uana that was given by alias <unK . 7es, sir. I 9hen you proceeded to take hold of this carton, .ling $eneth was not yet frisked, is it not FsicGK . A 4ust donDt know if she was frisked already by "adua, sir. I 9ho got hold of thisK . A was the one, sir. I 7ou were the one who got thisK . 7es, sir. I .t that particular point in time, you did not know if the alleged buy-bust money was already retrieved by "aduaK . 7es, sir. I 7ou went inside the houseK . 7es, sir. I 7ou did not have any search warrantK . 7es, sir. I An fact, there was nothing yet as far as you were concerned to validate the fact that )rs. +adao was in possession of the buy-bust money because according to you, you did not know whether "adua already retrieved the buy-bust money from herK . 7es, sir. I 5ow far was this from the doorK . Two and a half meters from the door, sir. At was in plain view. I :nder the table according to youK . 7es, sir, dining table. I ,omewhere hereK . AtDs far, sir. 3!6,;C:T6! )ay we re>uest the witness to place it, where he saw itK

. 5ere, sir. , (1a4 you 3ee 23 a 7ar4o"@ A %e3, 32r, :241 <9a3427. , Mar?e# S"o: T28e I7e Po<@ A %e3, 32r. , (241 a <2e7e o= <9a3427 ;232b9e o" 4o< o= 41e 7ar4o"@ A %e3, 32r. , T1a4 23 a99 41a4 you 3a:@ A %e3, 32r. 3!6,;C:T6! For the record, your 5onor... I 7ou were only able to verify according to you... 3!6,;C:T6! 3anero, wait. "ecause A am ob4ecting to the words a piece of plastic. "y reading it... .TT7. B.8D;C ThatDs a piece of plastic. 3!6,;C:T6! "y reading it, it will connote... this is not a piece of plastic. .TT7. B.8D;C 9hat is thatK 9hat can you say, FiscalK ADm asking youK 3!6,;C:T6! 9ith due respect, what A am saying is, letDs place the si@e of the plastic. . piece of plastic may be big or a small one, for record purposes. C6:!T 8eave that to the court. 3!6,;C:T6! 8eave that to the court. , T1e o"9y rea3o" a77or#2"6 4o you, you :ere ab9e 4o... Loo? a4 4123, "o e;e" Su<er8a"... I :241#ra: 41a4. No4 e;e" a 8a" :241 ;ery ?2" - sic0 eye3 7a" 4e99 41e 7o"4e"43 1ere. A"# a77or#2"6 4o 41e +our4, 24 7ou9# be 42?oy, 23 24 "o4 -sic0@ A %e3, 32r. , S2o<ao@ A %e3, 32r. , +a""e# 6oo#3@ A %e3, 32r. , I4 7ou9# be 27e 7rea8 be7au3e 24 3ay3 S"o: Po<, I7e Po<@ A I <re3u8e# 24 :a3 a93o 8ar2>ua"a be7au3e 24 8ay ... , I a8 "o4 a3?2"6 you :1a4 your <re3u8<42o"3 are. IG8 a3?2"6 you :1a4 24 7ou9# <o332b9y be. A I4G3 41e 3a8e <9a3427, 32r. .TT7. B.8D;C ADm not even asking you that >uestion so why are you voluntarily saying the information. 8et the prosecutor do that for you. C6:!T

Continue. $eEt >uestion. E E

E.*F1%=G

36% )anlangit and the police team were at appellant +addaoDs house because they were led there by appellant Doria. The $arcom agents testified that they had no information on appellant +addao until appellant Doria named her and led them to her.F1%1G ,tanding by the door of appellant +addaoDs house, 36% )anlangit had a view of the interior of said house. Two and a half meters away was the dining table and underneath it was a carton boE. The boE was partially open and revealed something wrapped in plastic. An his direct eEamination, 36% )anlangit said that he was sure that the contents of the boE were mari4uana because he himself checked and marked the said contents. F1% G 6n cross-eEamination, however, he admitted that he merely <re3u8e# the contents to be mari4uana because it had the same plastic wrapping as the *buy-bust mari4uana.* . close scrutiny of the records reveals that the plastic wrapper was not colorless and transparent as to clearly manifest its contents to a viewer. Ea71 o= 41e 4e" C10D br27?3 o= 8ar2>ua"a 2" 41e bo5 :a3 2"#2;2#ua99y :ra<<e# 2" o9# "e:3<a<er a"# <9a7e# 2"32#e <9a3427 ba63&& :124e, <2"? or b9ue 2" 7o9or. F1%%G PO3 Ma"9a"624 1283e9= a#8244e# o" 7ro33&e5a82"a42o" 41a4 41e 7o"4e"43 o= 41e bo5 7ou9# be 24e83 o41er 41a" 8ar2>ua"a. He #2# "o4 ?"o: e5a749y :1a4 41e bo5 7o"4a2"e# 41a4 1e 1a# 4o a3? a<<e99a"4 Ga##ao abou4 243 7o"4e"43. F1%'G I4 :a3 "o4 288e#2a4e9y a<<are"4 4o PO3 Ma"9a"624 41a4 41e 7o"4e"4 o= 41e bo5 :a3 8ar2>ua"a. The mari4uana was not in plain view and its sei@ure without the re>uisite search warrant was in violation of the law and the Constitution. F1%0G At was fruit of the poisonous tree and should have been eEcluded and never considered by the trial court.F1%&G The fact that the boE containing about siE /&1 kilos of mari4uana F1%#G was found in the house of accused-appellant +addao does not 4ustify a finding that 31e herself is guilty of the crime charged. F1%-G .propos is our ruling in People v. !"innudin, F1%(G vi@2 *The Court strongly supports the campaign of the government against drug addiction and commends the efforts of our law enforcement officers against those who would inflict this malediction upon our people, especially the susceptible youth. "ut as demanding as this campaign may be, it cannot be more so than the compulsions of the "ill of !ights for the protection of the liberty of every individual in the realm, including the basest of criminals. The Constitution covers with the mantle of its protection the innocent and the guilty alike against any manner of high-handedness from the authorities, however praiseworthy their intentions. Those who are supposed to enforce the law are not 4ustified in disregarding the right of the individual in the name of order. 6rder is too high a price for the loss of liberty. .s <ustice 5olmes, again, said, DA think it a less evil that some criminals should escape than that the government should play an ignoble part.D At is simply not allowed in the free society to violate a law to enforce another, especially if the law violated is the Constitution itself.*F1'=G

,ection ' of !epublic .ct $o. &' 0, the Dangerous Drugs .ct of 1(# , as amended by ,ection 1% of !epublic .ct $o. #&0( punishes the *sale, administration, delivery, distribution and transportation of a prohibited drug* with the penalty of reclusion perpetua to death and a fine ranging from 30==,===.== to 31= million, to wit2 *Sec. 4. Sale, !d"inistration, eliver., istribution and /ransportation of Prohibited rugs.-- The penalty of reclusion perpetua to death, and a fine ranging from five hundred thousand pesos to ten million pesos shall be imposed upon any person who, unless authori@ed by law, shall sell, administer, deliver, give away to another, distribute, dispatch in transit or transport any prohibited drug, or shall act as a broker in any of such transactions. E E E.* An every prosecution for illegal sale of dangerous drugs, what is material is the submission of proof that the sale took place between the poseur-buyer and the seller thereof and the presentation of the drug, i.e., the corpus delicti, as evidence in court. F1'1G The prosecution has clearly established the fact that in consideration of 31,&==.== which he received, accused-appellant Doria sold and delivered nine hundred seventy /(#=1 grams of mari4uana to 36% )anlangit, the poseur-buyer. The prosecution, however, has failed to prove that accused-appellant +addao conspired with accused-appellant Doria in the sale of said drug. There being no mitigating or aggravating circumstances, the lower penalty of reclusion perpetua must be imposed.F1' G IN )IE( (HEREOF, the decision of the !egional Trial Court, "ranch 10&, 3asig City acting as a ,pecial Court in Criminal Case $o. %%=#-D is reversed and modified as follows2 1. .ccused-appellant Florencio Doria y "olado is sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua and to pay a fine of five hundred thousand pesos /30==,===.==1. . .ccused-appellant Bioleta +addao y Catama is ac>uitted. SO OR*ERE*.
Two civilian informants informed the PNP Narcom that one “Jun was engaged in illegal drug activities and the Narcom agents decided to entrap and arrenst “Jun” in a buy-bust operation. ? n the day of entrapment! P " #anlangit handed “Jun” the mar$ed bills and “Jun” instructed P " #anlangit to wait for him while he got the mari%uana from his associate. ? &hen they met up! “Jun” gave P " something wrapped in plastic upon which P " arrested “Jun”. They fris$ed Jun but did not find the mar$ed bills on him. “Jun” revealed that he left the money at the house of his associate named “neneth” ? They wen to Neneth's house. P " #anlangit noticed a carton bo( under the dinin table and noticed something wrapped in plastic inside the bo(.

? )uspicious! P " entered the house and too$ hold of the bo( and found that it ha *+ bric$s of what appeared to be dried mari%uana leaves. ? )imultaneously! )P * ,adua recovered the mar$ed bills from Neneth. The policemen arrested Neneth and too$ both her and Jun! together with the co-! its contents and the mar$ed bill and turned them over to the investigator at head.uarters! ? Jun was then learned to be /lorencio 0oria while Neneth is 1iolata 2addao.

? The prosecution thus had failed to prove that 2addao conspired with 0oria in the sale of the said drug. Thus! 2addao is ac.uitted

? They were both convicted feloniously selling! administering and giving away to another ** plastic bags of suspected mari%uana fruiting tops! in violation of 3.4 5678! as amended by 34 958: ;ssue< & N 1ioleta 2addao is liable ? =ntrapment is recogni-ed as a valid defense that can be raised by an accused > parta$es the nature of a confession > avoidance. ? 4merican federal courts and state courts usually use the “sub%ective” or “origin of intent” test laid down in )orrells v. ?.). to determine whether entrapment actually occurred. The focus of the in.uiry is on the accused's predisposition to commit the offense is charged! his state of mind and inclination before his initial e(posure to government agents. ? 4nother test is the ob%ective test where the test of entrapment is whether the conduct of the law enforcement agenst was li$ely to induce a normally law-abiding person! other than one who is ready and willing! to commit the offense. ? The ob%ective test in buy-bust operations demands that the details of the purported transaction must be clearly > ade.uately shown. @ourts should loo$ at all factors to determine the predisposition of an accused to commit an offense in so far as they are relevant to determine the validty of the defense of inducement. ? ;n the case at bar! 2addao was not caught red-handed during the buy-bust operation to give ground for her arrest uner )ec. 8a of 3ule **". )he was not committing any crime. @ontrary to the finding of the T@! there was no occasion at all for 2addao to flee from the policement to %ustify her arrest in “hot pursuit” ? Neither could her arrest ne %ustified under second instance of “personal $nowledge” in 3ule **" as this must be based upon probable cause which means an actual belief or reasonable grounds for suspicion. 2addao was arrested solely on the basis of the alleged indentification made by her co-accused. P " #anlangt! however! declared in his direct e(amination that appellant 0oria named his co-accused in response to his .uery as to where the mar$ed money was. 0oria did not point to 2addao as his associate in the drug business! but as the person with whom he lfet the mar$ed bills. This identification does not necessarily lead to the conclusion that 2addao conspired with 0oria in pushing drugs! ;f there is no showing that the person who effected the warrantless arrest had! in his own right! $nowledge of the acts implicating the person arrested to the perpetration of a criminal offense! the arrest is legally ob%ectionable. ? /urthermore! the fact that the bo( containing about 5 $ilos of mari%uana was found in 2addao's house does not %ustify a finding that she herself is guilty of the crime charged.

-G.R. No. 130H12. May 11, 19990 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. !ERNAR*INO *OMANTA%, @ I/$NIOR OTOT,J accused-appellant. S%NOPSIS .ppellant, ( years old, was charged with rape with homicide for the death of <ennifer Domantay, a &-year old girl whose body was found in a bamboo grove with %- stab wounds at the back and whose hymen was completely lacerated on the right side, though found fully clothed in blue shorts and white shirt. The trial court found appellant guilty as charged and was sentenced to death. Conviction was based primarily on the testimonies of ,361 ;spino@a and Celso )anuel, a radio reporter. ,361 ;spino@a testified that appellant confessed to the killing of <ennifer and disclosed to him the location of the bayonet used which was submitted as evidence for the prosecution. .ccording to him, appellant waived assistance of counsel but the waiver was not put in writing nor made in the presence of counsel. 6n the other hand, )anuel declared that appellant, in an interview, admitted the brutal killing of <ennifer? that he was 4ust outside the cell when he interviewed appellant accompanied by his uncle inside the 4ail, that the nearest policemen were about -% meters from him and that no lawyer assisted appellant during the interview. .lso presented as a witness was Dr. "andonill, medico-legal eEpert of the $"A, who testified that it was possible that the lacerations on the victim could have been caused by something blunt other than the male organ. !aised in this appeal was the admissibility of two confessions made before ,361 ;spino@a and )anuel which appellant claimed to have been obtained from him in violation of ,ection 1 /11, .rticle AAA of the Constitution. The right to counsel of a person under custodial investigation can be waived only in writing and with assistance of counsel and that confessions or admissions obtained in violation thereof are inadmissible in evidence. 5owever, this prohibition does not apply to confessions or admissions made to private individuals, such as radio reporters. .buse of superior strength is appreciated where the victim, a siE-year old child, was assaulted by a fully grown man of ( years. . physicianPs finding, standing alone, that the hymen of the alleged victim was lacerated does not prove rape. At must be corroborated by other evidence proving carnal knowledge. The prosecution having failed to establish the fact of rape, appellant was found guilty of homicide, not rape with homicide, with the aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength. S%LLA!$S 1. REME*IAL LA(E E)I*EN+EE EKTRA/$*I+IAL +ONFESSIONE RE,$ISITES FOR A*MISSI!ILIT%. -- For an eEtra4udicial confession to

be admissible, it must satisfy the following re>uirements2 /11 it must be voluntary? / 1 it must be made with the assistance of competent and independent counsel? /%1 it must be eEpress? and /'1 it must be in writing. 2. I*.E I*.E I*.E I*.E +ASE AT !AR. -- An the case at bar, when accused-appellant was brought to the )alasi>ui police station in the evening of 6ctober 1#, 1((&, he was already a suspect, in fact the only one, in the brutal slaying of <ennifer Domantay. 5e was, therefore, already under custodial investigation and the rights guaranteed in .rt. AAA, Q 1 /11 of the Constitution applied to him. EEE "ut though he waived the assistance of counsel, the waiver was neither put in writing nor made in the presence of counsel. For this reason, the waiver is invalid and his confession is inadmissible. ,361 ;spino@aDs testimony on the alleged confession of accused-appellant should have been eEcluded by the trial court. ,o is the bayonet inadmissible in evidence, being, as it were, the fruit of the poisonous tree. 3. I*.E I*.E EKTRA/$*I+IAL +ONFESSION !EFORE RA*IO REPORTER, A*MISSI!LE. -- 9e agree with the ,olicitor +eneral, however, that accused-appellantDs confession to the radio reporter, Celso )anuel, is admissible. An 3eople v. .ndan, the accused in a rape with homicide case confessed to the crime during interviews with the media. An holding the confession admissible, despite the fact that the accused gave his answers without the assistance of counsel, this Court said2 F.GppellantDs ForalG confessions to the newsmen are not covered by ,ection 1 /11 and /%1 of .rticle AAA of the Constitution. The "ill of !ights does not concern itself with the relation between a private individual and another individual. At governs the relationship between the individual and the ,tate. The prohibitions therein primarily addressed to the ,tate and its agents.

B. +RIMINAL LA(E AGGRA)ATING +IR+$MSTAN+ESE A!$SE OF S$PERIOR STRENGTHE SIK&%EAR OL* +HIL* LILLE* !% A F$LL GRO(N MAN. -- The killing was committed with the generic aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength. The record shows that the victim, <ennifer Domantay, was siE years old at the time of the killing. ,he was a child of small build, '& in height. At is clear then that she could not have put up much of a defense against accused-appellantDs assault, the latter being a fully grown man of ( years. Andeed, the physical evidence supports a finding of abuse of superior strength2 accused-appellant had a weapon, while the victim was not shown to have had any? there were %- stab wounds? and all the knife wounds are located at the back of <enniferDs body. .. I*.E I*.E +R$ELT%E M$ST !E *ELI!ERATEL% AN* SA*ISTI+ALL% A$GMENTE* )I+TIMGS S$FFERINGE NOT +ONSI*ERE* IN +ASE AT !AR. -- "ut we think the lower court erred in finding that the killing was committed with cruelty. The trial court appears to have been led to this conclusion by the number of wounds inflicted on the victim. "ut the number of wounds is not a test for determining whether there was cruelty as an aggravating circumstance. The test . . . is whether the accused deliberately and

sadistically augmented the victimDs suffering thus . . . there must be proof that the victim was made to agoni@e before the Fthe accusedG rendered the blow which snuffed out FherG life. An this case, there is no such proof of cruelty. Dr. "andonill testified that any of the ma4or wounds on the victimDs back could have caused her death as they penetrated her heart, lungs and liver, kidney and intestines. H. +RIMINAL LA(E RAPEE +ARNAL LNO(LE*GE, NOT ESTA!LISHE* IN +ASE AT !AR. -- .s the victim here was siE years old, only carnal knowledge had to be proved to establish rape. Carnal knowledge is defined as the act of a man having seEual intercourse or seEual bodily connections with a woman. For this purpose, it is enough if there was even the slightest contact of the male seE organ with the labia of the victimDs genitalia. 5owever, there must be proof, by direct or indirect evidence, of such contact. EEE ;ven assuming that <ennifer had been raped, there is no sufficient proof that it was accused-appellant who had raped her. 5e did not confess to having raped the victim. From the foregoing, we cannot find that accused-appellant also committed rape. An the special compleE crime of rape with homicide, both the rape and the homicide must be established beyond reasonable doubt.

#engote, the indemnity should be fiEed at 30=,===.== and the moral damages at 30=,===.==. *E+ISION MEN*ONA, J.' This case is here on appeal from the decision F1G of the !egional Trial Court of Dagupan City /"ranch 0#1, finding accused-appellant guilty of rape with homicide and sentencing him to death, and to indemnify the heirs of the victim in the amount of 3'-=,===.==, and to pay the costs. The facts hark back to the afternoon of 6ctober 1#, 1((&, at around ' oPclock, when the body of siE-year old <ennifer Domantay was found sprawled amidst a bamboo grove in +uilig, )alasi>ui, 3angasinan. The childPs body bore several stab wounds. <ennifer had been missing since lunch time. The medical eEamination conducted the following day by Dr. )a. Fe 8eticia )acaranas, the rural health physician of )alasi>ui, showed that <ennifer died of multiple organ failure and hypovolemic shock secondary to %- stab wounds at the back. Dr. )acaranas found no lacerations or signs of inflammation of the outer and inner labia and the vaginal walls of the victimPs genitalia, although the vaginal canal easily admitted the little finger with minimal resistance. $oting possible commission of acts of lasciviousness, Dr. )acaranas recommended an autopsy by a medico-legal eEpert of the $"A.F G The investigation by the )alasi>ui police pointed to accused-appellant "ernardino Domantay, a cousin of the victimPs grandfather, as the lone suspect in the gruesome crime. .t around &2%= in the evening of that day, police officers )ontemayor, de la Cru@, and de +u@man of the )alasi>ui 3hilippine $ational 3olice /3$31 picked up accused-appellant at the )alasi>ui public market and took him to the police station where accused-appellant, upon >uestioning by ,361 .ntonio ;spino@a, confessed to killing <ennifer Domantay. 5e likewise disclosed that at around %2%= that afternoon, he had given the fatal weapon used, a bayonet, to ;lsa and <orge Casingal, his aunt and uncle respectively, in 3oblacion ,ur, "ayambang, 3angasinan. The neEt day, 6ctober 1-, 1((&, ,361 ;spino@a and another policeman took accused-appellant to "ayambang and recovered the bayonet from a tricycle belonging to the Casingal spouses. The police officers eEecuted a receipt to evidence the confiscation of the weapon.F%G 6n the basis of the post-mortem findings of Dr. )acaranas, ,36' <uan Carpi@o, the 3hilippine $ational 3olice chief investigator at )alasi>ui, filed, on 6ctober 1, 1((&, a criminal complaint for murder against accused-appellant before the )unicipal Trial Court /)TC1 of )alasi>ui. 6n 6ctober 0, 1((&, Dr. !onald "andonill, medico-legal eEpert of the $"A, performed an autopsy on the embalmed body of <ennifer. The result of his eEamination of the victimPs genitalia indicated that the childPs hymen had been completely lacerated on the right side. "ased on this finding, ,36' Carpi@o amended the criminal complaint against accused-appellant to rape with homicide. ,ubse>uently, the following information was filed2F'G

7. REME*IAL LA(E E)I*EN+EE PH%SI+IANGS FIN*INGS THAT H%MEN OF )I+TIM (AS LA+ERATE*, *OES NOT PRO)E RAPE. -- 5ymenal laceration is not necessary to prove rape? neither does its presence prove its commission. .s held in People v. *lili, a medical certificate or the testimony of the physician is presented not to prove that the victim was raped but to show that the latter had lost her virginity. Conse>uently, standing alone, a physicianDs finding that the hymen of the alleged victim was lacerated does not prove rape. At is only when this is corroborated by other evidence proving carnal knowledge that rape may be deemed to have been established. M. +I)IL LA(E *AMAGESE A+T$AL *AMAGESE M$ST !E *$L% S$PPORTE* !% E)I*EN+E. -- The list of eEpenses produced by the victimDs father, <aime Domantay, only totaled 3 -,'%=.==. 6f this amount, only 31 ,===.== was supported by a receipt. .rt. 1(( of the Civil Code provides that a party may recover actual or compensatory damages only for such loss as he has duly proved. Therefore, the award of actual damages should be reduced to 31 ,===.==. 9. I*.E I*.E EKEMPLAR% *AMAGESE RE+O)ERA!LE (HERE +RIME (AS ATTEN*E* !% AGGRA)ATING +IR+$MSTAN+E. -- An addition, the heirs of <ennifer Domantay are entitled to recover eEemplary damages in view of the presence of the aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength. .rt. %= of the Civil Code provides for the payment of eEemplary damages when the crime is committed with one or more aggravating circumstance. .n amount of 3 0,===.== is deemed appropriate. 10. I*.E *AMAGESE IN*EMNIT% AN* MORAL *AMAGES AT P.0,000.00 EA+H. -- An accordance with our rulings in People v. 5obles and People v.

That on or about the 1#th day of 6ctober, 1((&, in the afternoon, in barangay +uilig, )unicipality of )alasi>ui, province of 3angasinan, 3hilippines and within the 4urisdiction of this 5onorable Court, the above-named accused, with lewd design and armed with a bayonnete, did then and there, wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously have seEual intercourse with <ennifer Domantay, a minor of & years old against her will and consent, and on the same occasion, the said accused with intent to kill, then and there, wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously stab with the use of a bayonnete, the said <ennifer Domantay, inflicting upon her multiple stab wounds, which resulted to her death, to the damage and pre4udice of her heirs. .t the trial, the prosecution presented seven witnesses, namely, ;dward, <ie@l, 8oren@o, all surnamed Domantay, <oselito )e4ia, .ntonio ;spino@a, Celso )anuel, and Dr. !onald "andonill, to establish its charge that accused-appellant had raped and killed <ennifer Domantay. ;dward Domantay testified that in the morning of 6ctober 1#, 1((&, accusedappellant and his two brothers-in-law, <aime Caballero and Daudencio )acasaeb, had a round of drinks in front of the latterPs house in +uilig, )alasi>ui, 3angasinan. ;dward Domantay said that he was in front of )acasaebPs house, tending to some pigeons in his yard. F0G .fter the group had consumed several bottles of ,an )iguel gin, accused-appellant gave money to ;dward Domantay and asked him to buy two bottles of gin and a bottle of ,prite. F&G ;dward said he 4oined the group and sat between Daudencio )acasaeb and accused-appellant. F#G ;dward said that accused-appellant, who, apparently had one too many then, rolled up his shirt and said2 R$o diad !ntipolo tan -6i7pa et wala. "assacre, diad +uilig wala, wala. "assacren )od dia, wala. ona)is8a)isS /RAn .ntipolo and 8ipa, there were massacres? here in +uilig, there will also be a massacre. A will massacre somebody here, and they will cry and cryS1. ;dward Domantay saw that tucked in the left side of accused-appellantPs waistline was a bayonet without a cover handle. F-G At was not the first time that ;dward had seen accused-appellant with the knife as the latter usually carried it with him.F(G <ie@l Domantay, 1=, likewise testified. ,he said that, at about oPclock in the afternoon on 6ctober 1#, 1((&, she and four other children were playing in front of their house in +uilig, )alasi>ui, 3angasinan. <ie@l saw accused-appellant and <ennifer Domantay walking towards the bamboo grove of .mparo Domantay where <enniferPs body was later found. .ccused-appellant was about two meters ahead of <ennifer. The bamboo grove was about - to 1= meters from the house of <ie@l Domantay.F1=G 8oren@o Domantay, a relative of the victim, corroborated <ie@lPs testimony that accused-appellant had gone to .mparo DomantayPs bamboo grove in the afternoon of 6ctober 1#, 1((&. 8oren@o said that that afternoon, on his way to his farm, he saw accused-appellant about %= meters away, standing at the spot in the bamboo grove where <enniferPs body was later found. .ccused-appellant appeared restless and worried as he kept looking around. 5owever, as 8oren@o was in a hurry, he did not try to find out why accused-appellant appeared to be nervous.F11G

3rosecution witness <oselito )e4ia, a tricycle driver, said that, in the afternoon of 6ctober 1#, 1((&, he was about to take his lunch at home in .lacan, a neighboring barangay about half a kilometer from +uilig, when accused-appellant implored )e4ia to take him to )alasi>ui at once. )e4ia told accused-appellant that he was going to take his lunch first, but the latter pleaded with him, saying they will not be gone for long. )e4ia, therefore, agreed. )e4ia noticed that accused-appellant was nervous and afraid. .ccused-appellant later changed his mind. Anstead of going to the town proper, he alighted near the )ormonPs church, outside )alasi>ui.F1 G An addition, the prosecution presented ,361 .ntonio ;spino@a and Celso )anuel who testified that, on separate occasions, accused-appellant had confessed to the brutal killing of <ennifer Domantay. ,361 ;spino@a testified that he investigated accused-appellant after the latter had been brought to the )alasi>ui police station in the evening of 6ctober 1#, 1((&. "efore he commenced his >uestioning, he apprised accused-appellant of his constitutional right to remain silent and to have competent and independent counsel, in ;nglish, which was later translated into 3angasinense. F1%G .ccording to ,361 ;spino@a, accused-appellant agreed to answer the >uestions of the investigator even in the absence of counsel and admitted killing the victim. .ccused-appellant also disclosed the location of the bayonet he used in killing the victim. F1'G 6n crosseEamination, ;spino@a admitted that at no time during the course of his >uestioning was accused-appellant assisted by counsel. $either was accused-appellantPs confession reduced in writing.F10G ;spino@aPs testimony was admitted by the trial court over the ob4ection of the defense. Celso )anuel, for his part, testified that he is a radio reporter of station D93!, an .) station based in Dagupan City. 5e covers the third district of 3angasinan, including )alasi>ui. ,ometime in 6ctober 1((&, an uncle of the victim came to Dagupan City and informed the station about <ennifer DomantayPs case. F1&G 6n 6ctober %, 1((&, )anuel went to )alasi>ui to interview accused-appellant who was then detained in the municipal 4ail. 5e described what transpired during the interview thus2F1#G 3!6,. I:A$AT2 I Did you introduce yourself as a media practitionerK . 7es, sir. I 5ow did you introduce yourself to the accusedK . A showed to "ernardino Domantay alias R<unior 6totS my A.D. card and A presented myself as a media practitioner with my tape recorder FinG my hand, sir. I 9hat was his reaction to your re>uest for an interviewK . 5e was willing to state what had happened, sir. I 9hat are those matters which you brought out in that interview with the accused "ernardino Domantay alias R<unior 6totSK . A asked him what was his purpose for human interestPs sake as a reporter, why did he commit that alleged crime. .nd A asked also if he committed the crime and he answered Ryes.S ThatPs it.

.... 3!6,. I:A$AT2 I 7ou mentioned about accused admitting to you on the commiFssionG of the crime, how did you ask him thatK . A asked him very politely. I )ore or less what have you asked him on that particular matterK . A asked R<unior 6tot,S "ernardino Domantay, RMung pinagsisisihan mo ba ang iyong ginawaKS R6poS sabi niya, RAbig mo bang sabihin <un, ikaw ang pumatay kay <enniferKS, R.ko nga poS. The FlGast part of my interview, RMung nakikinig ang mga magulang ni <ennifer, ano ang gusto mong iparatingKS, Rkung gusto nilang makamtan ang hustisya ay tatanggapin koS. That is what he said, and A also asked <unior 6tot, what was his purpose, and he said, it was about the boundary dispute, and he used that little girl in his revenge. 6n cross-eEamination, )anuel eEplained that the interview was conducted in the 4ail, about two to three meters away from the police station. .n uncle of the victim was with him and the nearest policemen present were about two to three meters from him, including those who were in the radio room. F1-G There was no lawyer present. "efore interviewing accused-appellant, )anuel said he talked to the chief of police and asked permission to interview accused-appellant. F1(G 6n >uestioning by the court, )anuel said that it was the first time he had been called to testify regarding an interview he had conducted. F =G .s in the case of the testimony of ,361 ;spino@a, the defense ob4ected to the admission of )anuelPs testimony, but the lower court allowed it. Dr. "andonill, the $"A medico-legal who conducted an autopsy of the victim on 6ctober 0, 1((&, testified that <ennifer Domantay died as a result of the numerous stab wounds she sustained on her back, F 1G the average depth of which was siE inches.F G 5e opined that the wounds were probably caused by a Rpointed sharpedged instrument.SF %G 5e also noted contusions on the forehead, neck, and breast bone of the victim.F 'G .s for the results of the genital eEamination of the victim, Dr. "andonill said he found that the laceration on the right side of the hymen was caused within ' hours of her death. 5e added that the genital area showed signs of inflammation.F 0G 3acifico "ulatao, the photographer who took the pictures of the scene of the crime and of the victim after the latterPs body was brought to her parentsP house, identified and authenticated the five pictures /;Ehibits ., ", C, D, and ;1 offered by the prosecution. The defense then presented accused-appellant as its lone witness. .ccusedappellant denied the allegations against him. 5e testified he is an uncle of <ennifer Domantay /he and her grandfather are cousins1 and that he worked as a 4anitor at the )alasi>ui )unicipal 5all. 5e said that at around 1 oPclock in the afternoon of 6ctober 1#, 1((&, he was bathing his pigs outside the house of his brother-in-law Daudencio )acasaeb in +uilig, )alasi>ui, 3angasinan. 5e confirmed that Daudencio was then having drinks in front of his /)acasaebPs1 house. .ccused-

appellant claimed, however, that he did not 4oin in the drinking and that it was ;dward Domantay, whom the prosecution had presented as witness, and a certain <aime Caballero who 4oined the party. 5e also claimed that it was he whom )acasaeb had re>uested to buy some more li>uor, for which reason he gave money to ;dward Domantay so that the latter could get two bottles of gin, a bottle of ,prite, and a pack of cigarettes.F &G 5e denied ;dward DomantayPs claim that he /accusedappellant1 had raised his shirt to show a bayonet tucked in his waistline and that he had said he would massacre someone in +uilig.F #G .ccused-appellant also confirmed that, at about oPclock in the afternoon, he went to .lacan passing on the trail beside the bamboo grove of .mparo Domantay. "ut he said he did not know that <ennifer Domantay was following him. 5e further confirmed that in .lacan, he took a tricycle to )alasi>ui. The tricycle was driven by <oselito )e4ia. 5e said he alighted near the )ormon church, 4ust outside of the town proper of )alasi>ui to meet his brother. .s his brother did not come, accused-appellant proceeded to town and reported for work. That night, while he was in the )alasi>ui public market, he was picked up by three policemen and brought to the )alasi>ui police station where he was interrogated by ,361 ;spino@a regarding the killing of <ennifer Domantay. 5e denied having owned to the killing of <ennifer Domantay to ,361 ;spino@a. 5e denied he had a grudge against the victimPs parents because of a boundary dispute. F -G 9ith respect to his eEtra4udicial confession to Celso )anuel, he admitted that he had been interviewed by the latter, but he denied that he ever admitted anything to the former. F (G .s already stated, the trial court found accused-appellant guilty as charged. The dispositive portion of its decision reads2F%=G 95;!;F6!;, in light of all the foregoing, the Court hereby finds the accused, "ernardino Domantay L R<unior 6totS guilty beyond reasonable doubt with the crime of !ape with 5omicide defined and penali@ed under .rticle %%0 of the !evised 3enal Code in relation and as amended by !epublic .ct $o. #&0( and accordingly, the Court hereby sentences him to suffer the penalty of death by lethal in4ection, and to indemnify the heirs of the victim in the total amount of Four 5undred ;ighty Thousand 3esos /3'-=,===.==1,F%1G and to pay the costs. ,6 6!D;!;D. An this appeal, accused-appellant alleges that2F% G I. T5; C6:!T . I:6 ;!!;D A$ .33!;CA.TA$+ T5; ;OT!.<:DACA.8 C6$F;,,A6$F,G ).D; "7 T5; .CC:,;D.33;88.$T. T5; C6:!T . I:6 ;!!;D A$ C6$BACTA$+ T5; .CC:,;D D;,3AT; F.A8:!; 6F T5; 3!6,;C:TA6$ T6 3!6B; 5A, +:A8T ";76$D !;.,6$."8; D6:"T.

II.

F2r34. .ccused-appellant contends that his alleged confessions to ,361 .ntonio ;spino@a and Celso )anuel are inadmissible in evidence because they had

been obtained in violation of .rt. AAA, Q1 /11 of the Constitution and that, with these vital pieces of evidence eEcluded, the remaining proof of his alleged guilt, consisting of circumstantial evidence, is inade>uate to establish his guilt beyond reasonable doubt.F%%G .rt. AAA, Q1 of the Constitution in part provides2 /11 .ny person under investigation for the commission of an offense shall have the right to be informed of his right to remain silent and to have competent and independent counsel preferably of his own choice. Af the person cannot afford the services of counsel, he must be provided with one. These rights cannot be waived eEcept in writing and in the presence of counsel. .... /%1 .ny confession or admission obtained in violation of this section or section 1# hereof shall be inadmissible in evidence. This provision applies to the stage of custodial investigation, that is, Rwhen the investigation is no longer a general in>uiry into an unsolved crime but starts to focus on a particular person as a suspect.S F%'G !... $o. #'%- has eEtended the constitutional guarantee to situations in which an individual has not been formally arrested but has merely been RinvitedS for >uestioning.F%0G DecisionsF%&G of this Court hold that for an eEtra4udicial confession to be admissible, it must satisfy the following re>uirements2 /11 it must be voluntary? / 1 it must be made with the assistance of competent and independent counsel? /%1 it must be eEpress? and /'1 it must be in writing. An the case at bar, when accused-appellant was brought to the )alasi>ui police station in the evening of 6ctober 1#, 1((&, F%#G he was already a suspect, in fact the only one, in the brutal slaying of <ennifer Domantay. 5e was, therefore, already under custodial investigation and the rights guaranteed in .rt. AAA, Q1 /11 of the Constitution applied to him. ,361 ;spino@a narrated what transpired during accused-appellantPs interrogation2F%-G FAG interrogated "ernardino Domantay, prior to the interrogation conducted to him, A informed him of his constitutional right as follows? that he has the right to remain silent? that he has the right to a competent lawyer of his own choice and if he can not afford Fa counselG then he will be provided with one, and further informed FhimG that all he will say will be reduced into writing and will be used the same in the proceedings of the case, but he told me that he will cooperate even in the absence of his counsel? that he admitted to me that he killed <ennifer Domantay, and he revealed also the weapon used FandG where he gave FitG to. "ut though he waived the assistance of counsel, the waiver was neither put in writing nor made in the presence of counsel. For this reason, the waiver is invalid and his confession is inadmissible. ,361 ;spino@aPs testimony on the alleged confession of accused-appellant should have been eEcluded by the trial court. ,o is

the bayonet inadmissible in evidence, being, as it were, the Rfruit of the poisonous tree.S .s eEplained in People v. !licando2F%(G . . . .ccording to this rule, once the pri"ar. source /the RtreeS1 is shown to have been unlawfully obtained, any secondar. or derivative evidence /the RfruitS1 derived from it is also inadmissible. ,tated otherwise, illegally sei@ed evidence is obtained as a direct result of the illegal act, whereas the *fruit of the poisonous treeS is at least once removed from the illegally sei@ed evidence, but it is e>ually inadmissible. The rule is based on the principle that evidence illegally obtained by the ,tate should not be used to gain other evidence because the originally illegal obtained evidencetaints all evidence subse>uently obtained. 9e agree with the ,olicitor +eneral, however, that accused-appellantPs confession to the radio reporter, Celso )anuel, is admissible. An People v. !ndan, F'=G the accused in a rape with homicide case confessed to the crime during interviews with the media. An holding the confession admissible, despite the fact that the accused gave his answers without the assistance of counsel, this Court said2F'1G F.GppellantPs ForalG confessions to the newsmen are not covered by ,ection 1 /11 and /%1 of .rticle AAA of the Constitution. The "ill of !ights does not concern itself with the relation between a private individual and another individual. At governs the relationship between the individual and the ,tate. The prohibitions therein are primarily addressed to the ,tate and its agents. .ccused-appellant claims, however, that the atmosphere in the 4ail when he was interviewed was Rtense and intimidatingS and was similar to that which prevails in a custodial investigation.F' G 9e are not persuaded. .ccused-appellant was interviewed while he was inside his cell. The interviewer stayed outside the cell and the only person besides him was an uncle of the victim. .ccused-appellant could have refused to be interviewed, but instead, he agreed. 5e answered >uestions freely and spontaneously. .ccording to Celso )anuel, he said he was willing to accept the conse>uences of his act. Celso )anuel admitted that there were indeed some police officers around because about two to three meters from the 4ail were the police station and the radio room.F'%G 9e do not think the presence of the police officers eEerted any undue pressure or influence on accused-appellant and coerced him into giving his confession. .ccused-appellant contends that Rit is . . . not altogether improbable for the police investigators to ask the police reporter /)anuel1 to try to elicit some incriminating information from the accused.S F''G This is pure con4ecture. .lthough he testified that he had interviewed inmates before, there is no evidence to show that Celso was a police beat reporter. ;ven assuming that he was, it has not been shown that, in conducting the interview in >uestion, his purpose was to elicit incriminating information from accused-appellant. To the contrary, the media are known to take an opposite stance against the government by eEposing official wrongdoings.

Andeed, there is no showing that the radio reporter was acting for the police or that the interview was conducted under circumstances where it is apparent that accused-appellant confessed to the killing out of fear. .s already stated, the interview was conducted on 6ctober %, 1((&, & days after accused-appellant had already confessed to the killing to the police. .ccused-appellantPs eEtra4udicial confession is corroborated by evidence of corpus delicti, namely, the fact of death of <ennifer Domantay. An addition, the circumstantial evidence furnished by the other prosecution witnesses dovetails in material points with his confession. 5e was seen walking toward the bamboo grove, followed by the victim. 8ater, he was seen standing near the bamboo grove where the childPs body was found. !ule 1%% of the !evised !ules on ;vidence provides2 Q%. %9tra1udicial confession, not sufficient ground for conviction. T .n eEtra4udicial confession made by an accused, shall not be sufficient ground for conviction, unless corroborated by evidence of corpus delicti. Q'. %vidence necessar. in treason cases. T $o person charged with treason shall be convicted unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court. .ccused-appellant argues that it was improbable for a brutal killing to have been committed without the children who were playing about eight to ten meters from .mparo DomantayPs grove, where the crime took place, having heard any commotion.F'0G The contention has no merit. .ccused-appellant could have covered the young childPs mouth to prevent her from making any sound. An fact, Dr. "andonill noted a five by two inch /0S E S1 contusion on the left side of the victimPs forehead, which he said could have been caused by a hard blunt instrument or by impact as her head hit the ground. F'&G The blow could have rendered her unconscious, thus precluding her from shouting or crying. .ccused-appellant also contends that the testimony of <ie@l Domantay contradicts that of 8oren@o Domantay because while <ie@l said she had seen accusedappellant walking towards the bamboo grove, followed by the victim, at around oPclock in the afternoon on 6ctober 1#, 1((&, 8oren@o said he saw accused-appellant standing near the bamboo grove at about the same time. These witnesses, however, did not testify concerning what they saw at eEactly the same time. 9hat they told the court was what they had seen Rat aroundS oPclock in the afternoon. There could have been a difference in time, however little it was, between the time <ie@l saw accused-appellant and the victim walking and the time 8oren@o saw accused-appellant near the place where the victimPs body was later found. Far from contradicting each other, these witnesses confirmed what each had said each one saw. 9hat is striking about their testimonies is that while <ie@l said she saw accused-appellant going toward the bamboo grove followed by the victim Rat aroundS oPclock in the afternoon on 6ctober 1#, 1((&, 8oren@o said he had seen accused-appellant near the bamboo grove Rat aroundS that time. 5e described accused-appellant as nervous and worried. There is no reason to doubt the claim of these witnesses. 8oren@o is a relative of accused-appellant. There is no reason he

would testify falsely against the latter. <ie@l, on the other hand, is also surnamed Domantay and could also be related to accused-appellant and has not been shown to have any reason to testify falsely against accused-appellant. .t the time of the incident, she was only 1= years old. For the foregoing reasons, the Court is convinced of accused-appellantPs guilt with respect to the killing of the child. At is clear that the prosecution has proven beyond reasonable doubt that accused-appellant is guilty of homicide. .rt. '( of the !evised 3enal Code provides2 .ny person who, not falling within the provisions of .rticle '& FparricideG shall kill another without the attendance of any of the circumstances enumerated in the neEt preceding article FmurderG, shall be deemed guilty of homicide and be punished by reclusion te"poral. The killing was committed with the generic aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength. The record shows that the victim, <ennifer Domantay, was siE years old at the time of the killing. ,he was a child of small build, '&S in height.F'#G At is clear then that she could not have put up much of a defense against accusedappellantPs assault, the latter being a fully grown man of ( years. Andeed, the physical evidence supports a finding of abuse of superior strength2 accusedappellant had a weapon, while the victim was not shown to have had any? there were %- stab wounds? and all the knife wounds are located at the back of <enniferPs body. "ut we think the lower court erred in finding that the killing was committed with cruelty. F'-G The trial court appears to have been led to this conclusion by the number of wounds inflicted on the victim. "ut the number of wounds is not a test for determining whether there was cruelty as an aggravating circumstance. F'(G RThe test . . . is whether the accused deliberately and sadistically augmented the victimPs suffering thus . . . there must be proof that the victim was made to agoni@e before the Fthe accusedG rendered the blow which snuffed out FherG life.S F0=G An this case, there is no such proof of cruelty. Dr. "andonill testified that any of the ma4or wounds on the victimPs back could have caused her death as they penetrated her heart, lungs and liver, kidney and intestines.F01G Se7o"#. There is, however, no sufficient evidence to hold accused-appellant guilty of raping <ennifer Domantay. .rt. %%0 of the !evised 3enal Code, as amended, in part provides2 .!T. %%0. :hen and how rape is co""itted. T !ape is committed by having carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the following circumstances. 1. "y using force or intimidation? . 9hen the woman is deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious? and %. 9hen the woman is under twelve years of age or is demented. .s the victim here was siE years old, only carnal knowledge had to be proved to establish rape. Carnal knowledge is defined as the act of a man having seEual

intercourse or seEual bodily connections with a woman. F0 G For this purpose, it is enough if there was even the slightest contact of the male seE organ with the labia of the victimPs genitalia.F0%G 5owever, there must be proof, by direct or indirect evidence, of such contact. Dr. !onald "andonillPs report on the genital eEamination he had performed on the deceased reads2F0'G +;$AT.8 ;O.)A$.TA6$? showed a complete laceration of the right side of the hymen. The surrounding genital area shows signs of inflamation. .... !;).!M,2 11 Findings at the genital area indicate the probability of penetration of that area by a hard, rigid instrument. 5ymenal laceration is not necessary to prove rape? F00G neither does its presence prove its commission. .s held in People v. *lili,F0&G a medical certificate or the testimony of the physician is presented not to prove that the victim was raped but to show that the latter had lost her virginity. Conse>uently, standing alone, a physicianPs finding that the hymen of the alleged victim was lacerated does not prove rape. At is only when this is corroborated by other evidence proving carnal knowledge that rape may be deemed to have been established.F0#G This conclusion is based on the medically accepted fact that a hymenal tear may be caused by ob4ects other than the male seE organ F0-G or may arise from other causes.F0(G Dr. "andonill himself admitted this. 5e testified that the right side of the victimPs hymen had been completely lacerated while the surrounding genital area showed signs of inflammation.F&=G 5e opined that the laceration had been inflicted within ' hours of the victimPs death and that the inflammation was due to a trauma in that area.F&1G 9hen asked by the private prosecutor whether the lacerations of the hymen could have been caused by the insertion of a male organ he said this was possible. "ut he also said when >uestioned by the defense that the lacerations could have been caused by something blunt other than the male organ. Thus, he testified2
F& G

. I . I . I

. I . .... C6:!T2 I 7ou mentioned that the hymen was lacerated on the right sideK . 7es, your 5onor. I .nd if there is a complete erection by a human organ is this possible that the laceration can only be on the right side of the hymenK . 7es, your 5onor, its possible. I 5ow about if the penetration was done by a finger, was it the same as the human organK . 9ell, it depends on the si@e of the finger that penetratFesG the organ, if the finger is small it could the superficial laceration, and if the finger is large then it is possible your honor. I 5ow about two fingersK . 3ossible, sir. To be sure, this Court has sustained a number of convictions for rape with homicide based on purely circumstantial evidence. An those instances, however, the prosecution was able to present other tell-tale signs of rape such as the location and description of the victimPs clothings, especially her undergarments, the position of the body when found and the like. F&%G An People v. #acalino,F&'G for instance, the Court affirmed a conviction for the rape of a two year-old child on the basis of circumstantial evidence2F&0G The Court notes that the testimony or medical opinion of Dr. +a4ardo that the fresh laceration had been produced by seEual intercourse is corroborated by the testimony given by complainant ;li@abeth that when she rushed upstairs upon hearing her daughter suddenly cry out, she found appellant #acalino beside the child buttoning his own pants and that she found so"e stic). fluid on the child;s buttoc)s and so"e blood on her private part. /;mphasis in the original1 An contrast, in the case at bar, there is no circumstantial evidence from which to infer that accused-appellant seEually abused the victim. The only circumstance from which such inference might be made is that accused-appellant was seen with the victim walking toward the place where the girlPs body was found. )aybe he raped

9ell, sir when A say hard rigid instrument it should not be sharp pointed and sharp rigid, it should be a hard blFuGnt instrument. Do you consider a bolo a blFuGnt instrument, or a daggerK The dagger is a sharp rigid but it is not a blFuGnt instrument, sir. This +enital ;Eamination showed a complete laceration of the right side of the hymen, this may have been possibly caused by a dagger, is it notK $o, sir. A wonPt say that this would have been caused by a dagger, because a dagger would have made at its incision . . . not a laceration, sir. "ut this laceration may also have been caused by other factors other the human male organ, is that correctK . hard blFuGnt instrument, sir could show. )y >uestion is other than the human male organK 3ossible, sir.

3!6,. F. I:A$AT2 I $ow, what might have caused the complete laceration of the right side of the hymen, doctorK . 9ell, sir, if you look at my report there is a remark and it says there? findings at the genital area indicated the probability of penetration of that area by a hard rigid instrument. I Could it have been caused by a human organK . Af the human male organ is erect, fully erect and hard then it is possible, sir. .... .TT7. B.8D;C2 I An your remarks? finding at the genital area indicates the probability of penetration of that area by a hard rigid instrument, this may have also been caused by a dagger used in the killing of <ennifer Domantay is that correctK

the girl. )aybe he did not. )aybe he simply inserted a blunt ob4ect into her organ, thus causing the lacerations in the hymen. 6therwise, there is no circumstance from which it might reasonably be inferred that he abused her, e.g., that he was @ipping up his pants, that there was spermato@oa in the girlPs vaginal canal. Andeed, the very autopsy report of Dr. "andonill militates against the finding of rape. An describing the stab wounds on the body of the victim, he testified2F&&G F.Gfter eEamining the body A took note that there were several stab wounds . . . these were all found at the bac) area sir . . . eEtending from the back shoulder down to the lower back area from the left to the right. Considering the relative physical positions of the accused and the victim in crimes of rape, the usual location of the eEternal bodily in4uries of the victim is on the face, F&#G neck,F&-G and anterior portionF&(G of her body. .lthough it is not unnatural to find contusions on the posterior side, these are usually caused by the downward pressure on the victimPs body during the seEual assault. F#=G At is un>uestionably different when, as in this case, allthe stab wounds /eEcept for a minor cut in the lower left leg1 had their entry points at the back running from the upper left shoulder to the lower right buttocks. At is noteworthy that the deceased was fully clothed in blue shorts and white shirt when her body was brought to her parentPs house immediately after it was found.F#1G Furthermore, there is a huge bloodstain in the back portion of her shorts. F# G This must be because she was wearing this piece of clothing when the stab wounds were inflicted or immediately thereafter, thus allowing the blood to seep into her shorts to such an eEtent. .s accused-appellant would naturally have to pull down the girlPs lower garments in order to consummate the rape, then, he must have, regardless of when the stab wounds were inflicted, pulled up the victimPs shorts and undergarments after the alleged rape, otherwise, the victimPs shorts would not have been stained so eEtensively. .gain, this is contrary to ordinary human eEperience. ;ven assuming that <ennifer had been raped, there is no sufficient proof that it was accused-appellant who had raped her. 5e did not confess to having raped the victim. From the foregoing, we cannot find that accused-appellant also committed rape. An the special compleE crime of rape with homicide, both the rape and the homicide must be established beyond reasonable doubt.F#%G T12r#. The trial court ordered accused-appellant to pay the heirs of <ennifer Domantay the amount of 3%=,===.== as actual damages. 5owever, the list of eEpenses produced by the victimPs father, <aime Domantay, only totaled 3 -,'%=.==. 6f this amount, only 31 ,===.== was supported by a receipt. .rt. 1(( of the Civil Code provides that a party may recover actual or compensatory damages only for such loss as he has duly proved. Therefore, the award of actual damages should be reduced to 31 ,===.==.

An addition, the heirs of <ennifer Domantay are entitled to recover eEemplary damages in view of the presence of the aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength. .rt. %= of the Civil Code provides for the payment of eEemplary damages when the crime is committed with one or more aggravating circumstance. .n amount of 3 0,===.== is deemed appropriate.F#'G An accordance with our rulings in People v. 5oblesF#0G and People v. #engote, the indemnity should be fiEed at 30=,===.== and the moral damages at 30=,===.==.F##G
F#&G

(HEREFORE, the 4udgment of the trial court is ,;T .,AD; and another one is rendered FA$DA$+ accused-appellant guilty of homicide with the aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength and sentencing him to a prison term of 1 years of prision "a.or, as minimum, to = years of reclusion te"poral, as maEimum, and 6!D;!A$+ him to pay the heirs of <ennifer Domantay the amounts of 30=,===.==, as indemnity, 30=,===.==, as moral damages, 3 0,===.==, as eEemplary damages, and 31 ,===.==, as actual damages, and the costs.

SO OR*ERE*. avide, <r., C.<., 5o"ero, Bellosillo, #elo, Puno, =itug, >apunan, Panganiban, ?uisu"bing, Pardo, +on,aga8 5e.es, and 0nares8Santiago, <<., concur. Purisi"a, and Buena, <<., took no part in the deliberations.

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. (ILFRE*O RO*RIG$EN % +$LO a"# LARR% ARTELLERO % RI+O, F1G accused, LARR% ARTELLERO % RI+O, accused-appellant. *E+ISION ,$IS$M!ING, J.' 6n appeal is the decision dated $ovember 1%, 1((0 of the !egional Trial Court of )anila, "ranch (,F G in Criminal Case $o. (1-((0 &, convicting appellant and his co-accused of the crime of murder, sentencing them to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua, ordering them to pay the heirs of the victim 30=,===.== as indemnity, and to pay the costs. .ppellant 8arry .rtellero was employed as a cement miEer and helper of coaccused 9ilfredo !odrigue@, a mason in the construction of the upper floors of the

Far ;ast "ank and Trust Company, "lumentritt "ranch, ,ta. Cru@, )anila. "oth were charged with the crime of robbery with homicide for the killing of the bank security guard, !amon )atias y Abay. The trial court found both guilty of murder. "oth appealed. 5owever, !odrigue@ withdrew his appeal for financial reasons. .lthough only .rtellero is the appellant now, in view of the circumstances obtaining in this case, we are compelled to review !odrigue@Ps conviction as well. The facts of the case are as follows2 6n 6ctober 11, 1((1, early in the morning, at the Far ;ast "ank and Trust Company branch office in !i@al .venue cor. "atangas ,t., ,ta. Cru@, )anila, a messenger discovered the lifeless body of )atias, inside the bank premises. The body was hogtied with a nylon cord, and bore % stab wounds. The chairs and tables inside the bank were in disarray. The bankPs emergency eEit vault bore chisel marks. .t around &2== ..)., ,36% )endo@a and two other officers of the 9estern 3olice District arrived after receiving a report on the incident. They interviewed the bank 4anitor, a )r. Cawagdan, and the other security guard, Dionisio Bargas. Then they ordered the transfer of the body of )atias to the morgue. The police found a bloodstained scissorPs mate inside a podium located near the main entrance of the bank. The head guard of the bankPs security agency /8eopard1 also reported that three .%- cal. revolvers and five 1 gauge shotguns were missing from the guard rostrum.F%G .t around '2== 3.)., ,36% <amoralin and four other 93D policemen conducted a follow-up investigation. They learned from Bargas that there was an ongoing construction on the upper floors of the bank, and that appellant and his coaccused had access to the bank after office hours. ,36% <amoralin asked Bargas to accompany them to the barracks of the construction workers where they saw appellant at the ground floor of the construction site. 6n the third floor, they saw the co-accused, !odrigue@, packing his personal belongings. 9hen asked why he was packing, !odrigue@ replied that he had Rnothing more to do /at the site1.S ,36% <amoralin and the other police officers saw a pair of worn-out RmaongS pants on appellantPs bed, which had reddish stains on the right leg. The police also saw reddish stains on accusedPs shirt. !odrigue@ eEplained that he had a wound on his neck. 5owever, when the police eEamined his neck, they found no wound.The police then arrested !odrigue@ and appellant and brought them to the police station for interrogation. The police took the maong and t-shirt and had them eEamined by the Chemistry ,ection of $ational "ureau of Anvestigation /$"A1. F'G 6n 6ctober 10, 1((1, !odrigue@ eEecuted a sworn statement confessing that he and appellant together with one !ading )endo@a, and two other men whose names he did not know, killed )atias. !odrigue@ was assisted by .tty. 3rocopio 8ao AAA, of the 3ublic .ttorneyPs 6ffice. 6n 6ctober 1-, 1((1, appellant and !odrigue@ were charged with the crime of !obbery with 5omicide under the following Anformation2F0G That on or about 6ctober 11, 1((1, in the City of )anila, 3hilippines, the said accused, whose true names, identities and present whereabouts are still unknown and

helping one another, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously, with intent to kill, attack, assault and use personal violence upon the person of !.)6$ ).TA.,, a security guard on duty at Far ;ast "ank and Trust Company, by then and there stabbing the latter several times with a bladed instrument, hitting him on the different parts of the body, thereby inflicting upon the said !.)6$ ).TA., mortal stab wounds which were the direct and immediate cause of his death? that once the said !.)6$ ).TA., was attacked, assaulted andNor killed in the manner above-described, the said accused, with intent of gain, take, rob and carry away three /%1 pieces of caliber .%- revolvers and five /01 pieces of 1 gauge shotguns, all valued not less than 30.==? belonging to the Far ;ast "ank and Trust Company, to the damage and pre4udice of the said bank in the aforesaid amount of 30.==, 3hilippine Currency. Contrary to 8aw. :pon arraignment on $ovember their respective pleas of not guilty. F&G , 1((1, appellant and !odrigue@ entered

During trial, the prosecution presented the following witnesses2 /11 ,36% <aime D. )endo@a, / 1 ,36% !odolfo .. <amoralin, <r., both of the Crimes against 3ersons Division of the 93D, /%1 .tty. 3rocopio 8ao AAA of the 3ublic .ttorneyPs 6ffice /3.61, and /'1 Carolyn 7. Custodio, ,upervisor of the Chemistry District of the $"A. Custodio testified that the reddish stains on !odrigue@Ps pants and shirt were positive for type 6 human blood, which was also the blood type of !odrigue@. F#G The testimony of Dr. Dario 8. +a4ardo, Chief and )edico-8egal 6fficer of the 3$3 Crime 8aboratory, was dispensed with upon admission of the defense of the authenticity of the $ecropsy !eport, F-G which stated that the cause of death was Rcardio-respiratory arrest due to shock and hemorrhage secondary to multiple stab wounds in the body.SF(G The prosecution likewise offered in evidence the photograph of the body of the victim when it was found, the nylon cord used to tie him, the ,worn ,tatement of security guard Dionisio Bargas, the Certification issued by the 8eopard .gency as to the missing firearms, the sworn statement of !odrigue@, the 3rogress !eport of ,36% <amoralin, the "ooking ,heet and .rrest !eport, the 8etter-!e>uest of Chief Anspector <ose 3ring addressed to the Director of the $"A, the $"A 8aboratory !eport $o. "-(1-1&1%, the maong pants and shirt, and the 3$3 )edico-8egal !eport.F1=G .fter presentation of the prosecutionPs evidence, appellant filed a Demurrer to the ;videnceF11Gon the grounds that the prosecution failed to establish the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt and that testimonies of the prosecution witnesses were hearsay. :pon the 6ppositionF1 G of the public prosecutor, the trial court denied the demurrer for lack of merit.F1%G

The evidence for the defense consists of the testimonies of the following witnesses2 /11 ;vangelo :. <avellano, <r., "ank )anager of the F;"TC, "lumentritt branch, who testified that bank policy prohibits the guards from allowing persons into the bank after office hours, eEcept for official visitors coming from higher ranks, F1'G / 1 appellant, and /%1 !odrigue@. 6n the stand, both !odrigue@ and appellant admitted that they were provincemates from )asbate and co-workers in the construction site. They slept inside the building on the night before the incident but denied any participation in killing. They claimed that they learned of the killing only on 6ctober 11, 1((1, at around #2== ..)., when they saw many people milling around the area.!odrigue@ claimed that on the night of 6ctober 11, 1((1, he was mauled by policemen to confess to the crime. .ppellant, on his part, testified that the policemen merely placed him outside the room where !odrigue@ was being interrogated, and that the police did not take any statement from him. .ppellant also denied owning the maong pants which the police said were taken from his bed.F10G .fter due trial, the trial court rendered a decisionF1&G finding appellant and !odrigue@ guilty of murder, instead of robbery with homicide, disposing thus2 95;!;F6!;, the accused 8arry .rtellero 7 !ico and 9ilfredo !odrigue@ 7 Culo are hereby found guilty of the crime of )urder as defined and penali@ed under .rt. '- of the !evised 3enal Code and each of them are /sic1 hereby sentenced to suffer the penalty of 5eclusion Perpetua and pay civil indemnity of 30=,===.== by each of them to the heirs of the victim !amon )atias 7 Abay and to pay the costs. The charge of !obbery with 5omicide is dismissed it being not the proper charge. The accused are ac>uitted from the charge of !obbery for insufficiency of evidence. ,6 6!D;!;D. 6nly appellant pursued his appeal. An his brief,F1#G he contends that the trial court erred in2 A. ... +ABA$+ C!;D;$C; T6 T5; ;OT!.<:DACA.8 C6$F;,,A6$ 6F C6-.CC:,;D, 9A8F!;D6 !6D!A+:;C, .88;+;D C6C6$,3A!.T6!, A$ 3!6BA$+ C6$,3A!.C7 ., CA!C:),T.$TA.8 ;BAD;$C; T6 ,569 3!6"."A8AT7 6F 3.!TACA3.TA6$ 6F 8.!!7 .!TA88;!6 ., C6-C6$,3A!.T6!. AA. ... 568DA$+ T5.T T5; ).6$+ 3.$T, ,T.A$;D 9AT5 5:).$ "866D T73; R6S A, T5.T 6F .CC:,;D-.33;88.$T, .$D ., 3.!T 6F CA!C:),T.$TA.8 ;BAD;$C; 6F +:A8T 6! 3.!TACA3.TA6$ A$ T5; C6))A,,A6$ 6F T5; C!A);. AAA. ... 568DA$+ T5.T T5; F.CT 6F 96!MA$+ .$D ,8;;3A$+ T6+;T5;! 9AT5 C6-.CC:,;D F6! ,AO /&1 )6$T5,, ., 3.!T 6F CA!C:),T.$TA.8 ;BAD;$C; T6 FA$+;! 36A$T +:A8T T6 .CC:,;D-.33;88.$T.

AB. ... !;$D;!A$+ D;CA,A6$ )6!; ,;!A6:, T5.$ C5.!+;D A$ T5; A$F6!).TA6$. Anstead of filing an .ppelleePs "rief, the 6ffice of the ,olicitor +eneral filed a )anifestation and )otion in 8ieu of .ppelleePs "rief F1-G contending that2 /11 T5; T!A.8 C6:!T ;!!;D A$ .D)ATTA$+ A$ ;BAD;$C; T5; ;OT!.<:DACA.8 C6$F;,,A6$ 6F .CC:,;D 9A8F!;D6 !6D!A+:;C .+.A$,T 5A, C6-.CC:,;D, .33;88.$T 8.!!7 .!T;88;!6. / 1 .,,:)A$+ F6! T5; ,.M; 6F .!+:);$T T5.T .CC:,;D !6D!A+:;CP, ;OT!.<:DACA.8 C6$F;,,A6$ A, .D)A,,A"8; .+.A$,T .33;88.$T .!T;88;!6, T5; T!A.8 C6:!T ;!!;D A$ FA$DA$+ .33;88.$T +:A8T7 6F T5; C!A); 6F ):!D;!. The 6,+ points out that the prosecution failed to prove the eEistence of a conspiracy between appellant and !odrigue@ independent of the eEtra4udicial confession of the latter. The fact that !odrigue@ and appellant have been working in the construction site for siE months prior to the incident is insufficient to make a finding of conspiracy. Further, the fact that type 6 blood stains were found on appellantPs maong pants and !odrigue@Ps t-shirt has no probative value since appellant denied owning the maong pants, and more importantly, the victimPs blood type was not eEamined, hence there was no point of comparison. 8astly, the 6,+ contends that the trial court erred in convicting appellant of murder considering that the Anformation failed to allege the circumstances >ualifying the killing to murder. The resolution of the issue regarding the guilt of appellant, in our view, hinges on whether the eEtra4udicial confession of accused !odrigue@ is admissible not only against him but also against appellant. 9e find that !odrigue@Ps confession is constitutionally flawed so that it could not be used as evidence against them at all. The four fundamental re>uisites for the admissibility of a confession are /11 the confession must be voluntary? / 1 the confession must be made with the assistance of competent and independent counsel? /%1 the confession must be eEpress? and /'1 the confession must be in writing.F1(G 9e find the second re>uisite lacking. 3rosecution witness ,36% <amoralin testified that the accused and appellant were arrested and brought to the police station at around 02== 3.). of 6ctober 11, 1((1. F =G The records show that the eEtra4udicial confession of !odrigue@ was taken down by 3at. David D. Tua@on at 2== 3.). of 6ctober 10, 1((1.F 1G .tty. 8ao confirmed on the stand that the police investigators called him at around 2== 3.). of 6ctober 10, 1((1, and that he conferred with the accused for about 1= minutes prior to the eEecution of the eEtra4udicial confession.F G ;vidently, !odrigue@ and appellant were detained for four days, but .tty. 8ao of the 3.6 was called only on the fourth day of detention when accused was about to put his confession in writing. :nder the factual milieu, the moment accused and appellant were arrested and brought to the police station, they were already under custodial investigation.

An the case of People v. Bolanos,F %G we held that an accused who is on board the police vehicle on the wa. to the police station is already under custodial investigation, and should therefore be accorded his rights under the Constitution. An this case, the teaching of Bolanos clearly went unheeded. The rights of persons under custodial investigation is enshrined in .rticle AAA, ,ection 1 of the 1(-# Constitution which provides2 ,ec. 1 /11 .ny person under investigation for the commission of an offense shall have the right to be informed of his right to remain silent and to have competent and independent counsel preferably of his own choice. Af the person cannot afford the services of counsel, he must be provided with one. These rights cannot be waived eEcept in writing and in the presence of counsel. / 1 $o torture, force, violence, threat, intimidation or any other means which vitiates the free will shall be used against him. ,ecret detention places, solitary, inco""unicado, or other similar forms of detention are prohibited. /%1 .ny confession or admission obtained in violation of this or section 1# hereof /right against self-incrimination1 shall be inadmissible in evidence against him. /'1 The law shall provide for penal and civil sanctions for violation of this section as well as compensation for the rehabilitation of victims of tortures or similar practices, and their families. Custodial investigation refers to the critical pre-trial stage when the investigation is no longer a general in>uiry into an unsolved crime but has begun to focus on a particular person as a suspect. F 'G 9hen !odrigue@ and appellant were arrested by the police in the afternoon of 6ctober 11, 1((1, they were already the suspects in the slaying of the security guard, !amon )atias, and should have been afforded the rights guaranteed by .rticle AAA, ,ection 1 of the 1(-# Constitution, particularly the right to counsel. The records do not show that !odrigue@ and appellant, at the time of their arrest in the afternoon of 6ctober 11, 1((1, were informed of the well-known #iranda rights. 9orse, they were not provided with competent and independent counsel during the custodial investigation prior to the eEecution of the eEtra4udicial confession. An People v. e la Cru,, #( ,C!. '0 /1((#1, we declared as inadmissible the eEtra4udicial confession of accused where the interrogation started at (2== ..). and his lawyer arrived only at 112== ..).. <urisprudence is clear that an accused under custodial investigation must continuousl. have a counsel assisting him from the very start thereof. F 0G An this case, !odrigue@ and appellant were in the hands of the police for about four days without the assistance of counsel. An People v. Co"pil, F &G we held that2 The operative act, it has been stressed, is when the police investigation is no longer a general in>uiry into an unsolved crime but has begun to focus on a particular suspect who has been taken into custody by the police to carry out a process of interrogation that lends itself to eliciting incriminatory statements, and not the signing by the

suspect of his supposed eEtra4udicial confession.Thus in People v. de <esus / 1% ,C!. %'0 F1(( G1 we said that admissions obtained during custodial investigation without the benefit of counsel although later reduced to writing and signed in the presence of counsel are still flawed under the Constitution. ,o flagrant a violation of the constitutional right to counsel of the accused cannot be countenanced. An People v. @livare,, <r.,F #G we eEplained that2 The purpose of providing counsel to a person under custodial investigation is to curb the uncivili@ed practice of eEtracting confession even by the slightest coercion as would lead the accused to admit something false. 9hat is sought to be avoided is the Revil of eEtorting from the very mouth of the person undergoing interrogation for the commission of an offense, the very evidence with which to prosecute and thereafter convict him.S These constitutional guarantees have been made available to protect him from the inherently coercive psychological, if not physical, atmosphere of such investigation. )oreover, so stringent is this re>uirement that even if the confession of an accused speaks the truth, if it was made without the assistance of counsel, it is inadmissible in evidence regardless of the absence of coercion, or even if it had been voluntarily given.F -G ,ince the eEtra4udicial confession eEecuted by !odrigue@ was given in violation of the safeguards in .rt. AAA, ,ec. 1 of the 1(-# Constitution, we hold that !odrigue@Ps confession is totally inadmissible, and it was error for the trial court to use it in convicting !odrigue@ and appellant. Ansofar as !odrigue@ is concerned, the trial court relied on his eEtra4udicial confession in convicting him. .side from said eEtra4udicial confession, however, there is a dearth of evidence on record, whether direct or circumstantial, linking !odrigue@ to the commission of the crime. .s to appellant, the trial court convicted him on the basis of two pieces of circumstantial evidence which show conspiracy2 /11 the eEtra4udicial confession of accused implicating him as one of the perpetrators and / 1 the fact that the maong pants allegedly belonging to appellant was found positive of type 6 blood. The former being inadmissible and the latter being of no probative value since the blood type of appellant and the victim were not taken for purposes of comparison, there remains nothing to support appellantPs conviction. .s pointed out by the 6ffice of the ,olicitor +eneral, even granting arguendo that the eEtra4udicial confession of accused was admissible, ,ection %% of !ule 1%= of the !ules of Court provides that such confession is only admissible against the confessant. An order to be admissible against his co-accused, ,ection %= of !ule 1%= of the !ules of Court re>uire there must be independent evidence aside from the eEtra4udicial confession to prove conspiracy. An this case, however, no other piece of evidence was presented to prove the alleged conspiracy.

.lthough it is only appellant who persisted with the present appeal, the wellestablished rule is that an appeal in a criminal proceeding throws the whole case open for review of all its aspects, including those not raised by the parties. F (G The records show that !odrigue@ had withdrawn his appeal due to financial reasons. F%=G 5owever, ,ection 11 /a1 of !ule 1 of the !ules of Court provides that RFaGn appeal taken by one or more FofG several accused shall not affect those who did not appeal, eEcept insofar as the 4udgment of the appellant court is favorable and applicable to the latter.S .s we have elucidated, the evidence against and the conviction of both appellant and !odrigue@ are ineEtricably linked. 5ence, appellantPs ac>uittal, which is favorable and applicable to !odrigue@, should benefit the latter. (HEREFORE, the decision of the trial court convicting appellant 8.!!7 .!T;88;!6 y !AC6 and co-accused 9A8F!;D6 !6D!A+:;C y C:86 is hereby !;B;!,;D. .ppellant and !odrigue@ are .CI:ATT;D of the crime of murder and ordered immediately released from prison, unless held for another lawful cause. The Director of 3risons is directed to inform this Court of his compliance, within ten /1=1 days from receipt of this Decision. $o costs. SO OR*ERE*.

-G.R. No. 123.9.. *e7e8ber 12, 19970 SAMM% MALA+AT y MAN*AR, petitioner, vs. +O$RT OF APPEALS, a"# PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents. *E+ISION *A)I*E, /R., J.' An an AnformationF1G filed on %= .ugust 1((=, in Criminal Case $o. (=--&#'before the !egional Trial Court /!TC1 of )anila, "ranch 0, petitioner ,ammy )alacat y )andar was charged with violating ,ection % of 3residential Decree $o. 1-&&,F G as follows2 That on or about .ugust #, 1((=, in the City of )anila, 3hilippines, the said accused did then and there willfully, unlawfully and knowingly keep, possess andNor ac>uire a hand grenade, without first securing the necessary license andNor permit therefor from the proper authorities. .t arraignmentF%G on ( 6ctober 1((=, petitioner, assisted by counsel de oficio, entered a plea of not guilty. .t pre-trial on 11 )arch 1((1, petitioner admitted the eEistence of ;Ehibits R.,S R.-1,S and R.- ,SF'G while the prosecution admitted that the police authorities were not armed with a search warrant nor warrant of arrest at the time they arrested petitioner.F0G .t trial on the merits, the prosecution presented the following police officers as its witnesses2 !odolfo 7u, the arresting officer? <osefino +. ,erapio, the investigating officer? and 6rlando !amilo, who eEamined the grenade. !odolfo 7u of the 9estern 3olice District, )etropolitan 3olice Force of the Antegrated $ational 3olice, 3olice ,tation $o. %, Iuiapo, )anila, testified that on # .ugust 1((=, at about &2%= p.m., in response to bomb threats reported seven days earlier, he was on foot patrol with three other police officers /all of them in uniform1 along Iue@on "oulevard, Iuiapo, )anila, near the )ercury Drug store at 3la@a )iranda. They chanced upon two groups of )uslim-looking men, with each group, comprised of three to four men, posted at opposite sides of the corner of Iue@on "oulevard near the )ercury Drug ,tore. These men were acting suspiciously with RFtGheir eyes U moving very fast.SF&G 7u and his companions positioned themselves at strategic points and observed both groups for about thirty minutes. The police officers then approached one group of men, who then fled in different directions. .s the policemen gave chase, 7u caught up with and apprehended petitioner. :pon searching petitioner, 7u found a fragmentation grenade tucked inside petitionerPs Rfront waist line.S F#G 7uPs companion, police officer !ogelio )alibiran, apprehended .bdul Casan from whom a .%- caliber revolver was recovered. 3etitioner and Casan were then brought to 3olice ,tation $o. % where 7u placed an ROS mark at the bottom of the grenade and thereafter gave it to his commander.F-G

6n cross-eEamination, 7u declared that they conducted the foot patrol due to a report that a group of )uslims was going to eEplode a grenade somewhere in the vicinity of 3la@a )iranda. 7u recogni@ed petitioner as the previous ,aturday, 0 .ugust 1((=, likewise at 3la@a )iranda, 7u saw petitioner and others attempt to detonate a grenade. The attempt was aborted when 7u and other policemen chased petitioner and his companions? however, the former were unable to catch any of the latter. 7u further admitted that petitioner and Casan were merely standing on the corner of Iue@on "oulevard when 7u saw them on # .ugust 1((=. .lthough they were not creating a commotion, since they were supposedly acting suspiciously, 7u and his companions approached them. 7u did not issue any receipt for the grenade he allegedly recovered from petitioner.F(G <osefino +. ,erapio declared that at about (2== a.m. of - .ugust 1((=, petitioner and a certain .bdul Casan were brought in by ,gt. ,a>uilla F1=G for investigation. Forthwith, ,erapio conducted the in>uest of the two suspects, informing them of their rights to remain silent and to be assisted by competent and independent counsel. Despite ,erapioPs advice, petitioner and Casan manifested their willingness to answer >uestions even without the assistance of a lawyer. ,erapio then took petitionerPs uncounselled confession /;Eh. R;S1, there being no 3.6 lawyer available, wherein petitioner admitted possession of the grenade. Thereafter, ,erapio prepared the affidavit of arrest and booking sheet of petitioner and Casan. 8ater, ,erapio turned over the grenade to the Antelligence and ,pecial .ction Division /A,.D1 of the ;Eplosive 6rdnance Disposal :nit for eEamination.F11G 6n cross-eEamination, ,erapio admitted that he took petitionerPs confession knowing it was inadmissible in evidence.F1 G 6rlando !amilo, a member of the "omb Disposal :nit, whose principal duties included, among other things, the eEamination of eEplosive devices, testified that on )arch 1((1, he received a re>uest dated 1( )arch 1((1 from 8t. ;duardo Cabrera and 36 Diosdado Diotoy for eEamination of a grenade. !amilo then affiEed an orange tag on the sub4ect grenade detailing his name, the date and time he received the specimen. During the preliminary eEamination of the grenade, he RFfGound that FtheG ma4or components consisting of FaG high filler and fuse assembly FwereG all present,S and concluded that the grenade was RFlGive and capable of eEploding.S 6n even date, he issued a certification stating his findings, a copy of which he forwarded to Diotoy on 11 .ugust 1((1.F1%G 3etitioner was the lone defense witness. 5e declared that he arrived in )anila on <uly 1((= and resided at the )uslim Center in Iuiapo, )anila. .t around &2%= in the evening of # .ugust 1((=, he went to 3la@a )iranda to catch a breath of fresh air. ,hortly after, several policemen arrived and ordered all males to stand aside. The policemen searched petitioner and two other men, but found nothing in their possession. 5owever, he was arrested with two others, brought to and detained at 3recinct $o. %, where he was accused of having shot a police officer. The officer showed the gunshot wounds he allegedly sustained and shouted at petitioner R 6i7to ang ta"a "o sa a)in.S This officer then inserted the mu@@le of his gun into

petitionerPs mouth and said, R6.7ou are the one who shot "e .S 3etitioner denied the charges and eEplained that he only recently arrived in )anila. 5owever, several other police officers mauled him, hitting him with benches and guns. 3etitioner was once again searched, but nothing was found on him. 5e saw the grenade only in court when it was presented.F1'G The trial court ruled that the warrantless search and sei@ure of petitioner was akin to a Rstop and frisk,S where a Rwarrant and sei@ure can be effected without necessarily being preceded by an arrestS and Rwhose ob4ect is either to maintain the status quo momentarily while the police officer seeks to obtain more information.SF10G 3robable cause was not re>uired as it was not certain that a crime had been committed, however, the situation called for an investigation, hence to re>uire probable cause would have been Rpremature.S F1&G The !TC emphasi@ed that 7u and his companions were RFcGonfronted with an emergency, in which the delay necessary to obtain a warrant, threatens the destruction of evidenceS F1#G and the officers RFhGad to act in haste,S as petitioner and his companions were acting suspiciously, considering the time, place and Rreported cases of bombing.S Further, petitionerPs group suddenly ran away in different directions as they saw the arresting officers approach, thus RFiGt is reasonable for an officer to conduct a limited search, the purpose of which is not necessarily to discover evidence of a crime, but to allow the officer to pursue his investigation without fear of violence.SF1-G The trial court then ruled that the sei@ure of the grenade from petitioner was incidental to a lawful arrest, and since petitioner RFlGater voluntarily admitted such fact to the police investigator for the purpose of bombing the )ercury Drug ,tore,S concluded that sufficient evidence eEisted to establish petitionerPs guilt beyond reasonable doubt. An its decisionF1(G dated 1= February 1((' but promulgated on 10 February 1((', the trial court thus found petitioner guilty of the crime of illegal possession of eEplosives under ,ection % of 3.D. $o. 1-&&, and sentenced him to suffer2 FTGhe penalty of not less than ,;B;$T;;$ /1#1 7;.!,, F6:! /'1 )6$T5, .$D 6$; /11 D.7 6F 5%C-*SA@$ /%#P@5!-, as minimum, and not more than T5A!T7 /%=1 7;.!, 6F 5%C-*SA@$ P%5P%/*!, as maEimum. 6n 1- February 1((', petitioner filed a notice of appeal F =G indicating that he was appealing to this Court. 5owever, the record of the case was forwarded to the Court of .ppeals which docketed it as C.-+.!. C! $o. 10(-- and issued a notice to file briefs.F 1G An his .ppellantPs "rief F that2 1. T5; 869;! C6:!T ;!!;D A$ 568DA$+ T5.T T5; ,;.!C5 :36$ T5; 3;!,6$ 6F .CC:,;D-.33;88.$T .$D T5; ,;AC:!; 6F T5; .88;+;D 5.$D+!;$.D; F!6) 5A) R9., .$ .33!63!A.T; A$CAD;$T T6 5A, .!!;,T.S
G

. T5; 869;! C6:!T ;!!;D A$ .D)ATTA$+ ., ;BAD;$C; .+.A$,T .CC:,;D-.33;88.$T T5; 5.$D+!;$.D; .88;+;D87 ,;AC;D F!6) 5A) ., AT 9., . 3!6D:CT 6F .$ :$!;.,6$."8; .$D A88;+.8 ,;.!C5. An sum, petitioner argued that the warrantless arrest was invalid due to absence of any of the conditions provided for in ,ection 0 of !ule 11% of the !ules of Court, citing People vs. #engote.F %G .s such, the search was illegal, and the hand grenade sei@ed, inadmissible in evidence. An its "rief for the .ppellee, the 6ffice of the ,olicitor +eneral agreed with the trial court and prayed that its decision be affirmed in toto.F 'G An its decision of ' <anuary 1((&,F 0G the Court of .ppeals affirmed the trial court, noting, first, that petitioner abandoned his original theory before the court a quo that the grenade was RplantedS by the police officers? and second, the factual finding of the trial court that the grenade was sei@ed from petitionerPs possession was not raised as an issue. Further, respondent court focused on the admissibility in evidence of ;Ehibit RD,S the hand grenade sei@ed from petitioner. )eeting the issue s>uarely, the Court of .ppeals ruled that the arrest was lawful on the ground that there was probable cause for the arrest as petitioner was Rattempting to commit an offense,S thus2 9e are at a loss to understand how a man, who was in possession of a live grenade and in the company of other suspicious characterFsG with unlicensed firearmFsG lurking in 3la@a )iranda at a time when political tension haFdG been enkindling a series of terroristic activities, FcanG claim that he was not attempting to commit an offense. 9e need not mention that 3la@a )iranda is historically notorious for being a favorite bomb site especially during times of political upheaval. .s the mere possession of an unlicensed grenade is by itself an offense, )alacatPs posture is simply too preposterous to inspire belief. An so doing, the Court of .ppeals took into account petitionerPs failure to rebut the testimony of the prosecution witnesses that they received intelligence reports of a bomb threat at 3la@a )iranda? the fact that 36 7u chased petitioner two days prior to the latterPs arrest, or on # .ugust 1((=? and that petitioner and his companions acted suspiciously, the RaccumulationS of which was more than sufficient to convince a reasonable man that an offense was about to be committed. )oreover, the Court of .ppeals observed2 The police officers in such a volatile situation would be guilty of gross negligence and dereliction of duty, not to mention of gross incompetence, if they FwouldG first wait for )alacat to hurl the grenade, and kill several innocent persons while maiming numerous others, before arriving at what would then be an assured but moot conclusion that there was indeed probable cause for an arrest. 9e are in agreement with the lower court in saying that the probable cause in such a situation should not be the kind of proof necessary to convict, but rather the practical considerations of everyday life on which a reasonable and prudent mind, and not legal technicians, will ordinarily act.

filed with the Court of .ppeals, petitioner asserted

Finally, the Court of .ppeals held that the rule laid down in 3eople v. )engote, which petitioner relied upon, was inapplicable in light of RFcGrucial differences,S to wit2
F &G

The penalty provided by ,ection % of 3.D. $o. 1-&& upon any person who shall unlawfully possess grenades is reclusion te"poral in its maEimum period to reclusion perpetua. For purposes of determining appellate 4urisdiction in criminal cases, the maEimum of the penalty, and not the minimum, is taken into account. ,ince the maEimum of the penalty is reclusion perpetua, the appeal therefrom should have been to us, and not the Court of .ppeals, pursuant to ,ection (/%1 of the <udiciary !eorgani@ation .ct of 1(-= /".3. "lg. 1 (1, F #G in relation to ,ection 1# of the <udiciary .ct of 1('-,F -G ,ection 0/ 1 of .rticle BAAA of the Constitution F (G and ,ection %/c1 of !ule 1 of the !ules of Court. F%=G The term Rlife imprisonmentS as used in ,ection ( of ".3. "lg. 1 (, the <udiciary .ct of 1('-, and ,ection % of !ule 1 must be deemed to include reclusion perpetua in view of ,ection 0/ 1 of .rticle BAAA of the Constitution. 3etitionerPs $otice of .ppeal indicated that he was appealing from the trial courtPs decision to this Court, yet the trial court transmitted the record to the Court of .ppeals and the latter proceeded to resolve the appeal. 9e then set aside the decision of the Court of .ppeals for having been rendered without 4urisdiction, and consider the appeal as having been directly brought to us, with the petition for review as petitionerPs "rief for the .ppellant, the comment thereon by the 6ffice of the ,olicitor +eneral as the "rief for the .ppellee and the memoranda of the parties as their ,upplemental "riefs. Deliberating on the foregoing pleadings, we find ourselves convinced that the prosecution failed to establish petitionerPs guilt with moral certainty. First, serious doubt surrounds the story of police officer 7u that a grenade was found in and sei@ed from petitionerPs possession. $otably, 7u did not identify, in court, the grenade he allegedly sei@ed. .ccording to him, he turned it over to his commander after putting an ROS mark at its bottom? however, the commander was not presented to corroborate this claim. 6n the other hand, the grenade presented in court and identified by police officer !amilo referred to what the latter received from 8t. ;duardo Cabrera and police officer Diotoy not immediately after petitionerPs arrest, but nearly seven /#1 months later, or on 1( )arch 1((1? further, there was no evidence whatsoever that what !amilo received was the very same grenade sei@ed from petitioner. An his testimony, 7u never declared that the grenade passed on to !amilo was the grenade the former confiscated from petitioner. 7u did not, and was not made to, identify the grenade eEamined by !amilo, and the latter did not claim that the grenade he eEamined was that sei@ed from petitioner. 3lainly, the law enforcement authorities failed to safeguard and preserve the chain of evidence so crucial in cases such as these. ,econd, if indeed petitioner had a grenade with him, and that two days earlier he was with a group about to detonate an eEplosive at 3la@a )iranda, and 7u and his fellow officers chased, but failed to arrest them, then considering that 7u and his three fellow officers were in uniform and therefore easily cogni@able as police officers, it was then unnatural and against common eEperience that petitioner simply

FAn )engoteG the police officers never received any intelligence report that someone FatG the corner of a busy street FwouldG be in possession of a prohibited article. 5ere the police officers were responding to a FsicG public clamor to put a check on the series of terroristic bombings in the )etropolis, and, after receiving intelligence reports about a bomb threat aimed at the vicinity of the historically notorious 3la@a )iranda, they conducted foot patrols for about seven days to observe suspicious movements in the area. Furthermore, in )engote, the police officers FhadG no personal knowledge that the person arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense. 5ere, 36% 7u FhadG personal knowledge of the fact that he chased )alacat in 3la@a )iranda two days before he finally succeeded in apprehending him. :nable to accept his conviction, petitioner forthwith filed the instant petition and assigns the following errors2 1. T5; !;,36$D;$T C6:!T ;!!;D A$ .FFA!)A$+ T5; FA$DA$+ 6F T5; T!A.8 C6:!T T5.T T5; 9.!!.$T8;,, .!!;,T 6F 3;TATA6$;! 9., B.8AD .$D 8;+.8. . T5; !;,36$D;$T C6:!T ;!!;D A$ 568DA$+ T5.T T5; !:8A$+ A$ 3;638; B,. );$+6T; D6;, $6T FA$D .338AC.TA6$ A$ T5; A$,T.$T C.,;. An support thereof, petitioner merely restates his arguments below regarding the validity of the warrantless arrest and search, then disagrees with the finding of the Court of .ppeals that he was Rattempting to commit a crime,S as the evidence for the prosecution merely disclosed that he was Rstanding at the corner of 3la@a )iranda and Iue@on "oulevardS with his eyes Rmoving very fastS and Rlooking at every person that come /sic1 nearer /sic1 to them.S Finally, petitioner points out the factual similarities between his case and that of People v. #engote to demonstrate that the Court of .ppeals miscomprehended the latter. An its Comment, the 6ffice of the ,olicitor +eneral prays that we affirm the challenged decision. For being impressed with merit, we resolved to give due course to the petition. The challenged decision must immediately fall on 4urisdictional grounds. To repeat, the penalty imposed by the trial court was2 F$Got less than ,;B;$T;;$ /1#1 7;.!,, F6:! /'1 )6$T5, .$D 6$; /11 D.7 6F 5%C-*SA@$ /%#P@5!-, as minimum, and not more than T5A!T7 /%=1 7;.!, 6F 5%C-*SA@$ P%5P%/*!, as maEimum.

stood there in proEimity to the police officers. $ote that 7u observed petitioner for thirty minutes and must have been close enough to petitioner in order to discern petitionerPs eyes Rmoving very fast.S Finally, even assuming that petitioner admitted possession of the grenade during his custodial investigation by police officer ,erapio, such admission was inadmissible in evidence for it was taken in palpable violation of ,ection 1 /11 and /%1 of .rticle AAA of the Constitution, which provide as follows2 ,;C. 1 /11. .ny person under investigation for the commission of an offense shall have the right to be informed of his right to remain silent and to have competent and independent counsel preferably of his own choice. Af the person cannot afford the services of counsel, he must be provided with one. These rights cannot be waived eEcept in writing and in the presence of counsel. EEE /%1 .ny confession or admission obtained in violation of this or ,ection 1# hereof shall be inadmissible in evidence against him. ,erapio conducted the custodial investigation on petitioner the day following his arrest. $o lawyer was present and ,erapio could not have re>uested a lawyer to assist petitioner as no 3.6 lawyer was then available. Thus, even if petitioner consented to the investigation and waived his rights to remain silent and to counsel, the waiver was invalid as it was not in writing, neither was it eEecuted in the presence of counsel. ;ven granting e9 gratia that petitioner was in possession of a grenade, the arrest and search of petitioner were invalid, as will be discussed below. The general rule as regards arrests, searches and sei@ures is that a warrant is needed in order to validly effect the same.F%1G The Constitutional prohibition against unreasonable arrests, searches and sei@ures refers to those effected without a validly issued warrant,F% G sub4ect to certain eEceptions. .s regards valid warrantless arrests, these are found in ,ection 0, !ule 11% of the !ules of Court, which reads, in part2 ,ec. 0. -- .rrest, without warrant? when lawful -- . peace officer or a private person may, without a warrant, arrest a person2 /a1 9hen, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense? /b1 9hen an offense has in fact 4ust been committed, and he has personal knowledge of facts indicating that the person to be arrested has committed it? and /c1 9hen the person to be arrested is a prisoner who has escaped VVV . warrantless arrest under the circumstances contemplated under ,ection 0/a1 has been denominated as one *in flagrante delicto,* while that under ,ection 0/b1 has been described as a *hot pursuit* arrest.

Turning to valid warrantless searches, they are limited to the following2 /11 customs searches? / 1 search of moving vehicles? /%1 sei@ure of evidence in plain view? /'1 consent searches?F%%G/01 a search incidental to a lawful arrest? F%'G and /&1 a *stop and frisk.*F%0G An the instant petition, the trial court validated the warrantless search as a Rstop and friskS with Rthe sei@ure of the grenade from the accused FasG an appropriate incident to his arrest,S hence necessitating a brief discussion on the nature of these eEceptions to the warrant re>uirement. .t the outset, we note that the trial court confused the concepts of a *stop-andfrisk* and of a search incidental to a lawful arrest. These two types of warrantless searches differ in terms of the re>uisite >uantum of proof before they may be validly effected and in their allowable scope. An a search incidental to a lawful arrest, as the precedent arrest determines the validity of the incidental search, the legality of the arrest is >uestioned in a large ma4ority of these cases, e.g., whether an arrest was merely used as a preteEt for conducting a search.F%&G An this instance, the law re>uires that there first be a lawful arrest before a search can be made -- the process cannot be reversed. F%#G .t bottom, assuming a valid arrest, the arresting officer may search the person of the arrestee and the area within which the latter may reach for a weapon or for evidence to destroy, and sei@e any money or property found which was used in the commission of the crime, or the fruit of the crime, or that which may be used as evidence, or which might furnish the arrestee with the means of escaping or committing violence.
F%-G

5ere, there could have been no valid in flagrante delicto or hot pursuit arrest preceding the search in light of the lack of personal knowledge on the part of 7u, the arresting officer, or an overt physical act, on the part of petitioner, indicating that a crime had 4ust been committed, was being committed or was going to be committed. 5aving thus shown the invalidity of the warrantless arrest in this case, plainly, the search conducted on petitioner could not have been one incidental to a lawful arrest. 9e now proceed to the 4ustification for and allowable scope of a *stop-andfrisk* as a *limited protective search of outer clothing for weapons,* as laid down in /err., thus2 9e merely hold today that where a police officer observes unusual conduct which leads him reasonably to conclude in light of his eEperience that criminal activity may be afoot and that the persons with whom he is dealing may be armed and presently dangerous, where in the course of investigating this behavior he identifies himself as a policeman and makes reasonable in>uiries, and where nothing in the initial stages of the encounter serves to dispel his reasonable fear for his own or othersD safety, he is entitled for the protection of himself and others in the area to conduct a carefully limited search of the outer clothing of such persons in an attempt to discover weapons which might be

used to assault him. ,uch a search is a reasonable search under the Fourth .mendment VVVF%(G 6ther notable points of Terry are that while probable cause is not re>uired to conduct a *stop and frisk,*F'=G it nevertheless holds that mere suspicion or a hunch will not validate a *stop and frisk.* . genuine reason must eEist, in light of the police officerDs eEperience and surrounding conditions, to warrant the belief that the person detained has weapons concealed about him. F'1G Finally, a *stop-and-frisk* serves a two-fold interest2 /11 the general interest of effective crime prevention and detection, which underlies the recognition that a police officer may, under appropriate circumstances and in an appropriate manner, approach a person for purposes of investigating possible criminal behavior even without probable cause? and / 1 the more pressing interest of safety and self-preservation which permit the police officer to take steps to assure himself that the person with whom he deals is not armed with a deadly weapon that could uneEpectedly and fatally be used against the police officer. 5ere, here are at least three /%1 reasons why the Rstop-and-friskS was invalid2 First, we harbor grave doubts as to 7uPs claim that petitioner was a member of the group which attempted to bomb 3la@a )iranda two days earlier. This claim is neither supported by any police report or record nor corroborated by any other police officer who allegedly chased that group. .side from impairing 7uDs credibility as a witness, this likewise diminishes the probability that a genuine reason eEisted so as to arrest and search petitioner. Af only to further tarnish the credibility of 7uDs testimony, contrary to his claim that petitioner and his companions had to be chased before being apprehended, the affidavit of arrest /;Eh. *.*1 eEpressly declares otherwise, i.e., upon arrival of five /01 other police officers, petitioner and his companions were *immediately collared.* ,econd, there was nothing in petitionerPs behavior or conduct which could have reasonably elicited even mere suspicion other than that his eyes were Rmoving very fastS J an observation which leaves us incredulous since 7u and his teammates were nowhere near petitioner and it was already &2%= p.m., thus presumably dusk. 3etitioner and his companions were merely standing at the corner and were not creating any commotion or trouble, as 7u eEplicitly declared on crosseEamination2 I . I . I . .nd what were they doingK They were merely standing. 7ou are sure of thatK 7es, sir. .nd when you saw them standing, there were nothing or they did not create any commotionK $one, sir.

I .

$either did you see them create commotionK $one, sir.F' G

Third, there was at all no ground, probable or otherwise, to believe that petitioner was armed with a deadly weapon. $one was visible to 7u, for as he admitted, the alleged grenade was RdiscoveredS Rinside the front waistlineS of petitioner, and from all indications as to the distance between 7u and petitioner, any telltale bulge, assuming that petitioner was indeed hiding a grenade, could not have been visible to 7u. An fact, as noted by the trial court2 9hen the policemen approached the accused and his companions, they were not yet aware that a handgrenade was tucked inside his waistline. They did not see any bulging ob4ect in FsicG his person.F'%G 9hat is une>uivocal then in this case are blatant violations of petitionerPs rights solemnly guaranteed in ,ections and 1 /11 of .rticle AAA of the Constitution. (HEREFORE, the challenged decision of the ,eventeenth Division of the Court of .ppeals in C.-+.!. C! $o. 10(-- is ,;T .,AD; for lack of 4urisdiction on the part of said Court and, on ground of reasonable doubt, the decision of 1= February 1((' of "ranch 0 of the !egional Trial Court of )anila is !;B;!,;D and petitioner ,.))7 ).8.C.T y ).$D.! is hereby .CI:ATT;D and 6!D;!;D immediately released from detention, unless his further detention is 4ustified for any other lawful cause. Costs de oficio. SO OR*ERE*.

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. ALFONSO PATALIN, /R., ALEK MI/A,$E, AN* NESTOR RAS, accused-appellants. S%NOPSIS .ccused-appellants .leE )i4a>ue, .lfonso 3atalin <r. and $estor !as were charged before "ranch 0 of the !egional Trial Court of Aloilo City with the crime of robbery with physical in4uries and robbery with multiple rape. :pon arraignment on $ovember 1 , 1(-0, accused-appellants entered a plea of not guilty to both crimes charged. .fter trial on the merits, a 4oint 4udgment was rendered finding herein appellants guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the charges filed against them and sentenced them to suffer the penalty of ten years and one day of prision "a.or as

minimum to seventeen years and four months of reclusion te"poral as maEimum for the crime of robbery with physical in4uries and death penalty for the crime of robbery with multiple rape. "ecause of the penalty imposed, the case was forwarded to the ,upreme Court for automatic review. The errors assigned by appellants in their individual briefs are summari@ed as follows2 /11 The trial court erred in finding that the appellants are responsible for the crimes charged? / 1 The trial court erred in convicting appellant 3atalin notwithstanding the fact that the latter was arrested without a warrant? /%1 .ssuming without conceding that herein appellants committed the crimes charged, the trail court erred in imposing the penalty of death as the same was suspended upon the ratification of the 1(-# Constitution. The Court found appellantsP contention not tenable. . close eEamination of the records convinced the Court of the prosecution witnessesP credibility, particularly the ravished victims who, for approEimately two agoni@ing hours, were sub4ected to hellish nightmare occurring in the very privacy of their homes. .s pointed out by the 6,+ in its consolidated brief, the defense was not able to prove any motive on the part of the private complainants to falsely testify that they were robbed and raped by the appellants. An fact, the rape victims, were even married to first cousins of the appellant 3atalin and would not ordinarily turn against a relative although this be by mere affinity unless they really suffered the fate they narrated. Concerning accusedappellantsP defense that they were arrested without warrants, suffice it to say that any ob4ection, defect or irregularity attending the arrest must be made before the accused enters his plea. .s correctly pointed out in the 3eoplePs consolidated brief, the record shows no ob4ection was ever interposed prior to the arraignment and trial. 5owever, the Court agrees with the appellants that the abolition of the death penalty retroactively affected and benefited them as mandated by .rticle of the !evised penal Code and the subse>uent reimposition of the death penalty did not affect them. .ccordingly, the Court affirmed the challenged decision with the modification that the penalty imposed for the crime of robbery with physical in4uries was increased due to the presence of several aggravating circumstances. 8ikewise, the penalty imposed for the crime of robbery with multiple rape was reduced to reclusion perpetua. S%LLA!$S 1. REME*IAL LA(E E)I*EN+EE +RE*I!ILIT% OF (ITNESSESE ASSESSMENT OF +RE*I!ILIT% OF (ITNESSES AN* THEIR TESTIMON% IS A MATTER !EST $N*ERTALEN !% THE TRIAL +O$RTE +ASE AT !AR. - 6f primordial consideration in appellate matters is the legal principle that the assessment of the credibility of witnesses and their testimony is a matter best undertaken by the trial court because of its uni>ue opportunity to observe the witnesses firsthand and to note their demeanor, conduct, and attitude under grilling eEamination / People vs. @"brog, &,C!. (% F1((#G1. 9e generally uphold and respect this appraisal since, as an appellate court, we do not deal with live witnesses but only with the cold pages of a written record /People vs. Herbieto, &( ,C!. '# F1((#G1. . close eEamination of the record convinces us of the prosecution witnessesP

credibility, particularly the ravished victims, who, for approEimately two agoni@ing hours, were sub4ected to a hellish nightmare occurring in the very privacy of their own homes. .s pointed out by the 6ffice of the ,olicitor +eneral in its consolidated brief, the defense was not able to prove any motive on the part of the private complainants to falsely testify that they were robbed and raped by accused-appellants. An fact, two of the rape victims, <osephine "elisario and !ogelia Carcillar, were even married to first cousins of accusedappellant 3atalin, and would not ordinarily turn against a relative although this be by mere affinity unless they really suffered the fate they narrated. 2. I*.E I*.E I*.E *ELA% IN LO*GING A +RIMINAL A++$SATION *OES NOT IMPAIR THE +RE*I!ILIT% OF (ITNESSESE +ASE AT !AR. Time and again, we have ruled that delay in lodging a criminal accusation does not impair the credibility of a witness if such delay is satisfactorily eEplained /People vs. Bugarin, #% ,C!. %-' F1((#G1. .n eEamination of !eynaldo .limanPs sworn statement shows that he clearly identified one of the callers as accused-appellant .lfonso 3atalin. .nent his failure to mention accusedappellant )i4a>uePs name, he eEplained on cross-eEamination that he did not know yet the name of the person who attacked him with the bolo at the time he eEecuted his sworn statement. At was only later that he found out that the name of his assailant was .leE )i4a>ue. .s regards <esus 8arang, the fact that he mentioned Runknown personsS in his report does not affect !eynaldoPs categorical and positive identification of accused-appellants 3atalin and )i4a>ue as the perpetrators of the hacking and robbery incidents at his home. .nent the rape victims, it was clearly eEplained that their assailants told them not to report the matter to the police, otherwise, the assailants will return and kill them. The victims were overcome by fear and shame. "esides, the delay in reporting the multiple rapes was not procrastination as this was only % days from the date of the incident, a far shorter period than those mentioned inPeople vs. +eco"o / 0' ,C!. - F1((&G1 where we held that a delay of 1# or %0 days, or even & months, by a victim of rape in reporting the attack on her honor, does not detract from the veracity of her charge. 3. I*.E I*.E I*.E POSITI)E I*ENTIFI+ATION, PRE)AILS O)ER ALI!I AN* *ENIALE +ASE AT !AR. - 9ith respect to the defenses of denial and alibi, significantly, these defenses, if unsubstantiated by clear and convincing evidence, are negative and self-serving, deserve no weight in law, and cannot be given evidentiary value over the testimony of credible witnesses who testify on affirmative matters /People vs. +a.on, &( ,C!. 0-# F1((#G1. 3ositive identification, where categorical and consistent and without any showing of ill motive on the part of the eyewitnesses testifying on the matter, prevails over alibi and denial /People vs. <avier, &( ,C!. 1-1 F1((#G1. Berily, even if the defense of denial is supported by the testimony of friends of the accused, it deserves the barest consideration / People vs. +a"iao, '= ,C!. 0' F1((0G1. At will be given weight only if it would preclude any doubt that the accused could not have been physically present at the place of the crime or its vicinity at the time of commission / People vs. aquipil, '= ,C!. %1'

F1((0G? People vs. e 5o9as, '1 ,C!. %&( F1((0G? People vs. #orin, '1 ,C!. #=( F1((0G? People vs. 5ivera, ' ,C!. & F1((0G? People vs. ela Aglesia, '1 ,C!. #1- F1((0G? People vs. *"ali, ' ,C!. 1# F1((0G? People vs. a.son, ' ,C!. 1 ' F1((0G? People vs. %spinosa, <r., '% ,C!. # F1((0G? People vs. Parica, '% ,C!. 00# F1((0G? People vs. %scoto, '' ,C!. -# F1((0G1. .ccused-appellant )i4a>ue testified that on .ugust 11, 1(-', he was in )anduriao, Aloilo. The overland travel time from the town of )anduriao to 8ambunao is approEimately one hour and twenty minutes. .ccused-appellant 3atalin testified that he was in "arangay 3andan, which is merely ad4acent to 8ambunao. 8astly, accused-appellant $estor !as testified that he was in .nti>ue, a province neighboring Aloilo, which is approEimately two hours away therefrom via overland transportation. The defense tried to corroborate these alibis by presenting witnesses who testified on details which happened ten years prior to the date their testimony was given, and hence of naturally doubtful credibility. #utatis "utandi People vs. ?ueli,a / #( ,C!. 1'0 F1((#G1, considering that the places where accusedappellants alleged they were at could be traversed by motori@ed vehicles, it was not impossible that accused-appellants could not have been at the crime scene by # oPclock or #2%= oPclock in the evening on .ugust 11, 1(-'. )ore importantly and damning yet is the positive identification of their presence thereat by the victims. B. +RIMINAL LA(E AGGRA)ATING +IR+$MSTAN+ESE TRIAL +O$RT +ORRE+TL% APPRE+IATE* THE AGGRA)ATING +IR+$MSTAN+ES OF NIGHTTIME AN* *(ELLINGE +ASE AT !AR. - The trial court correctly appreciated the aggravating circumstances of nighttime and dwelling in Criminal Case $o. 1-%#& considering that nighttime facilitated the commission of the crime and the evidence shows that accusedappellants took advantage of the darkness to successfully consummate their plans /People vs. !pduhan, <r., ' ,C!. #(- F1(&-G1. Dwelling is clear from the abuse of confidence which the victims reposed in the offenders by opening the door to them, as well as the violation of the sanctity of privacy in the victimsP homes. 5e who goes to anotherPs house to slander him, hurt him, or do him wrong, is more guilty than he who offends him elsewhere. 9e further affirm the trial courtPs finding on the presence of the aggravating circumstance of band considering that !eynaldo .liman testified that accused-appellants 3atalin and two other companions /one of whom was later identified as accused-appellant )i4a>ue1 entered his home. This was corroborated by <osephine "elisario who even saw four /'1 persons enter their gate, one of whom was accused-appellant 3atalin. These same aggravating circumstances likewise attended the commission of the crime of robbery with multiple rape in Criminal Case $o. 1-%=0 and this was clearly testified to by the victims thereof who stated that five persons, including accused-appellant 3atalin, armed with a bolo, a knife, and a long gun, entered their dwelling that unfortunate night. .. I*.E +ONSPIRA+%E EKISTS (HEN T(O OR MORE PERSONS +AME TO AN AGREEMENT +ON+ERNING THE +OMMISSION OF A

FELON% AN* *E+I*E TO +OMMIT ITE +ASE AT !AR. & At is indubitable that there was conspiracy in the commission of the crimes in both Criminal Cases $o. 1-%#& and 1-%=0. An the first criminal case, the evidence clearly shows that accused-appellants 3atalin and )i4a>ue, together with unidentified companions, committed the crime charged. ,aid culprits shared the common criminal ob4ective of robbing the victims and inflicting wounds upon !eynaldo .liman on the occasion of the robbery. An the second case, all three accused-appellants /together with unidentified companions1, who were positively identified by the victims themselves, undoubtedly had the common criminal design of robbing the household of <esusa Carcillar, and of committing multiple rape on the occasion of the robbery. .ccused-appellant )i4a>ue dragged <osephine "elisario to her auntPs house and the other culprits followed suit. .ccused-appellant 3atalin boEed <esusa Carcillar and announced that they were staging a hold-up. .fter robbing the household, they proceeded in ravishing the four young female victims, !ogelia, <uliana, <osephine, and 3erpetua, one after the other, thus truly eEhibiting their concerted acts. Conspiracy eEists when two or more persons came to an agreement concerning the commission of a felony and decide to commit it / People vs. !barri, ' ,C!. %( F1((0G1. At cannot be merely presumed. ,imilar to the physical act constituting the crime itself, the elements of conspiracy must be proven beyond reasonable doubt. An the case at bar, although there was no proof of previous actual agreement among accused-appellants adduced at the trial - . . .direct proof is not essential to show conspiracy. At need not be shown that the parties actually came together and agreed in eEpress terms to enter into and pursue a common design. The eEistence of the assent of minds which is involved in a conspiracy maybe, and from the secrecy of the crime, usually must be inferred by the court from proof of facts and circumstances which, taken together, apparently indicate that they are merely parts of some complete whole. Af it is proved that two or more persons aimed by their acts towards the accomplishment of the same unlawful ob4ect, each doing a part so that their acts, though apparently independent, were in fact connected and cooperative, indicating a closeness of personal association and a concurrence of sentiment, then a conspiracy maybe inferred though no actual meeting among them to concert means is proved /People vs. Carbonel, '- 3hil. -&-? ,ee also People vs. =ira., 1'# ,C!. 1'&? People vs. Balignasa., +.!. $o. #&#'%, )ay , 1(( ? People vs. +alit, %= ,C!. '-&1... /People vs. #iranda., ' ,C!. & = F1((0G1. Berily, the participation of each of the accused-appellants was eEhibited by the straightforward testimony of the victims themselves. H. I*.E RATIFI+ATION OF 19M7 +ONSTIT$TION A$TOMATI+ALL% +OMM$TE* AN% *EATH PENALT% ALREA*% IMPOSE*. - .rticle 1 of the !evised 3enal Code provides that no felony shall be punishable by any penalty not prescribed by law prior to its commission. .t the time of the commission of the crime in 1(-', as held by the trial court, robbery with rape, if committed with the use of a deadly weapon or by two or more persons, was punishable by reclusion perpetua to death /.rticle ('F G, !evised 3enal Code

Fas amended by 3residential Decree $o. #&#G1. True, in 1(-#, the Constitution abolished the death penalty sub4ect to CongressP future restoration thereof Rfor compelling reasons involving heinous crimes.S .t the time of such ratification, the instant case was still at its trial stage. $o penalty had as yet then been imposed. Considering that the provision provides that RFaGny death penalty already imposed shall be reduced to reclusion perpetua,B it is clear that the framers intended said provision to have a retroactive effect on cases pending without any penalty of death having been imposed yet. Conse>uently, upon ratification of the 1(-# Constitution, any death penalty already imposed is automatically - without need for any eEecutive action commuted. 7. I*.E A!OLITION OF *EATH PENALT% !ENEFITS HEREIN A++$SE*& APPELLANTE +ASE AT !AR. &There is no doubt that the abolition of the death penalty in 1(-# retroactively affected and benefited accusedappellants. .rticle of the !evised 3enal Code provides that RFpGenal laws shall have a retroactive effect insofar as they favor the person guilty of a felony, who is not habitual criminal. . . although at the time of the publication of such laws a final sentence has been pronounced and the convict is serving the same.S . statute is penal when it imposes punishment for an offense committed against the state /!quino, The !evised 3enal Code, Bol. A, 1(-# ed., p. 01. The above-cited provision of the constitution is penal in character since it deals with the penalty to be imposed for capital crimes. This penal provision may be given retroactive effect during three possible stages of a criminal prosecution2 /a1 when the crime has been committed and the prosecution began? /b1 when sentence has been passed but the service has not begun? and /c1 when the sentence is being carried out /+regorio, Fundamentals of Criminal 8aw !eview, 1(-- ed., p. 1&#, citing %scalante vs. Santos, 0& 3hil. '-% F1(% G1. An the light of the discussion above, there is no >uestion that the abolition of the death penalty benefits herein accused-appellants. 3erforce, the subse>uent reimposition of the death penalty will not affect them. The framers of the Constitution themselves state that the law to be passed by Congress reimposing the death penalty /!epublic .ct #&0(1 can only have prospective application. *E+ISION MELO, J.' .ccused-appellants .leE )i4a>ue and .lfonso 3atalin, <r. were charged before "ranch 0 of the !egional Trial Court of the &th <udicial !egion stationed in Aloilo City, with the crime of robbery. V The .mended Anformation dated 6ctober 11, 1(-0 charged2 That on or about .ugust 11, 1(-', in the municipality of 8ambunao, province of Aloilo, 3hilippines, and within the 4urisdiction of this Court, the above named two / 1 accused, conspiring, confederating and cooperating with three /%1 others whose identities are still unknown and who are still at large, armed with bladed weapons by means of force, violence and intimidation, taking advantage of the nighttime to better reali@e their purpose, and in the dwelling of the offended party, did then and there

wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously take, steal and carry away, with intent to gain, cash amount of Three 5undred /3%==.==1 3esos, 3hilippine Currency, owned by the victim Cora@on .liman and the following personal property2 one /11 ad4ustable wrench, one /11 vise grip, one /11 screw driver, one /11 pair of levis pants, one /11 travelling bag and one /11 wallet containing ten /31=.==1 pesos, with a total value of Four 5undred /3'==.==1 3esos, 3hilippine Currency, owned by the victims !eynaldo .liman and <osephine "elesario, the over all total of cash and personal property being ,;B;$ 5:$D!;D /3#==.==1 3;,6,, 3hilippine Currency, without the consent of the above-mentioned offended parties and to their damage and pre4udice in the aforestated amount? that by reason or on the occasion of said !obbery, the above named two / 1 accused did then and there hack victim !eynaldo .liman twice hitting him and inflicting wounds which re>uired medical attendance of more than thirty /%=1 days, as well as inflict physical in4uries to the other victims Cora@on .liman and <osephine "elesario causing them to sustain in4uries re>uiring medical attendance for several number of days. C6$T!.!7 T6 8.9. /pp. ( -(%, AA !ecord.1 An a ,econd .mended Anformation also dated 6ctober 11, 1(-0 and docketed as Criminal Case $o. 1-%=0, accused-appellants .leE )i4a>ue, .lfonso 3atalin, <r., and $estor !as were charged before the same court with the crime of robbery with multiple rape, thusly2 That on or about .ugust 11, 1(-', in the municipality of 8ambunao, province of Aloilo, 3hilippines, and within the 4urisdiction of this Court, the above-named three /%1 accused, with deliberate intent, and without any 4ustifiable motive, conspiring, confederating and working together with !ichard Doe, 3hilip Doe and !obert Doe who are still at large, all armed with firearms and otherdeadly weapons, thereby performing FsicG themselves into a band, entered the dwelling of <esusa Carcillar, and once inside, with intent to gain and with violence against, andNor intimidation of persons, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously take, steal and carry away Five 5undred /30==.==1 3esos in cash, one /11 ring worth Two Thousand /3 ,===.==1 3esos, one /11 pair of earrings worth 6ne Thousand /31,===.==1 3esos, and one /11 ,eiko wrist watch worth Three Thousand /3%,===.==1 3esos, making a total of ,iE Thousand Five 5undred /3&,0==.==1 3esos, against the will andNor consent of the owner? that on the occasion thereof, the above-named three /%1 accused, conspiring and working together with their companions who are still at large, by means of force and intimidation, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously have seEual intercourse with 3erpetua Carcillar, <uliana Carcillar, !ogelia Carcillar and <osephine "elesario, against their will and consent. C6$T!.!7 T6 8.9. /pp. (=-(1, AA !ecord.1 :pon arraignment on $ovember 1 , 1(-0, accused-appellants entered a plea of Rnot guiltyS to both crimes charged /p. 1=%, AA !ecord1.

.fter trial on the merits, a 4oint 4udgment was rendered, disposing2 9herefore, premises considered there being sufficient and satisfactory proof showing that the accused in these two cases are guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the charges filed against them, they are hereby sentenced as follows2 a1 An Crim. Case $o. 1-%#& for !obbery with 3hysical An4uries, accused .lfonso 3atalin, <r. and .leE )i4a>ue are penali@ed to suffer the indeterminate penalty of imprisonment of Ten /1=1 years, and 6ne /11 day of 3rision )ayor, as minimum, to ,eventeen /1#1 years and Four /'1 months of !eclusion Temporal, as maEimum, to indemnify Cora@on .liman the amount of 3#==.== representing the value of her property robbed from her and also to indemnify !eynaldo .liman the amount of 3-,===.== representing the eEpenses he incurred for his medication and hospitali@ation due to the wounds he suffered. b1 An Criminal Case $o. 1-%=0 for !obbery with )ultiple !apes, accused .lfonso 3atalin, <r., .leE )i4a>ue and $estor !as are sentenced to a death penalty and to indemnify the members of the Carcillar family the amount of 3&,0==.== representing the cash and articles taken from them. An both cases the accused are also ordained to pay the costs. ,6 6!D;!;D. /p. -=, !ollo.1 The trial court arrived at the aforestated conclusion based on the following findings2 Criminal Case $o. 1-%#& The crime of robbery /with physical in4uries1 was indeed committed by accused-appellants .lfonso 3atalin, <r. and .leE )i4a>ue, as well as by their unidentified companions, based on the positive identification made by complaining witness Cora@on .liman, and corroborated by her son !eynaldo and the latterPs half sister <osephine "elisario /p. ##, !ollo1. Criminal Case $o. 1-%=0 .ccused-appellants .lfonso 3atalin, <r., .leE )i4a>ue, and $estor !as, as well as an unidentified companion, acted in concert to commit the crime of robbery with multiple rape. They were positively identified by the following witnesses2 <uliana Carcillar who was raped twice by .leE )i4a>ue? <osephine "elisario who was raped once by .leE )i4a>ue? !ogelia Carcillar who was raped by .leE )i4a>ue? and 3erpetua Carcillar, who was raped by $estor !as, after .lfonso 3atalin, <r. failed in his attempt to rape her. .ccused-appellant 3atalin was likewise identified by !eynaldo .liman who personally knew him as a former barangay-mate for along time, as well as by Cora@on .liman, mother of !eynaldo. The identification of accused-appellants was facilitated and aided by a bright full moon and due to the fact that they tarried in the crime scene for a long period of time, thus allowing their victims to imprint in their memory the countenance or visage of accused-

appellants. ,aid positive and clear identification by the complaining witnesses, who were not shown to have any ill motive to falsify the truth and to implicate accusedappellants, prevails over the latterPs defense of denial. "and, nocturnity, and dwelling, were likewise appreciated against accused-appellants /pp. #--#(, !ollo1. The errors assigned by accused-appellants in their individual briefs are summari@ed as follows2 /11 The trial court erred in finding that accused-appellants are responsible for the crimes charged? / 1 The trial court erred in convicting accused-appellant 3atalin notwithstanding the fact that the latter was arrested without a warrant? /%1 .ssuming without conceding that accused-appellants /3atalin and !as1 committed the crimes charged, the trial court erred in imposing the penalty of death as the same was suspended upon the ratification of the 1(-# Constitution /pp. -&, 1'&, =', !ollo1. The prosecutionPs version of the .ugust 11, 1(-' incident, based on the testimony of prosecution witnesses Dr. ;dgardo Carmelo, Dra. 8eticia ,itchon ,antiago, !eynaldo .liman, Cora@on .liman, <osephine "elisario, <uliana Carcillar, !ogelia Carcillar, and 3erpetua Carcillar, is summari@ed in the ,olicitor +eneralPs consolidated "rief, as follows2 .t about #2%= in the evening of .ugust 11, 1(-', while !eynaldo .liman, his half sister <osephine "elisario, and their mother Cora@on .liman were having a conversation inside their house at "arangay 8umanay, municipality of 8ambunao, province of Aloilo, appellant .lfonso 3atalin, <r., who was outside the fenced perimeter of said house, called out !eynaldo .liman by his nickname and asked the latter to let him and the other persons with him in /pp. 0-&, T,$, Dec. 1&, 1(-&1. !eynaldo .liman opened the window and, because of the moonlight, saw appellant .lfonso 3atalin, <r. with / 1 other persons. .ppellant .lfonso 3atalin, <r. asked again !eynaldo .liman to let them in /pp. #--, ibid.1. !eynaldo .liman opened the gate and .lfonso 3atalin together with his companions, one of whom is appellant .leE )i4a>ue, entered the premises /pp. -, 1=-11, ibid.1. Ammediately upon entering, appellant .lfonso 3atalin, <r. pointed the beam of his flashlight at !eynaldo .liman. .t this 4uncture, appellant .leE )i4a>ue hacked !eynaldo .liman twice with a bolo hitting the latter at the neck, right arm, and the chest /pp. 1'-1&, ibid.1. Thereupon, !eynaldo .liman immediately ran away /p. 1#, ibid.1. Cora@on .liman and <osephine "elisario, who went to the balcony of their house, witnessed the hacking incident and the former shouted for help /p. &, T,$, <uly 1, 1(-#? pp. --(, T,$, <une %=, 1(--1. Two of the assailants, one of whom is appellant .leE )i4a>ue, pushed Cora@on .liman and <osephine "elisario inside their house, covered their mouth and told them not to make any noise. 8ater, appellant .leE )i4a>ue dragged <osephine "elisario to the house of the latterPs aunt /sister of Cora@on .liman1 which is beside their house. The other man stayed put and while holding a double-bladed knife, threatened to kill Cora@on .liman if the latter will not give him money. .fter Cora@on .liman gave him three hundred pesos /3%==.==1 cash, he ransacked the house and took one /11 wrist watch, one /11 vise grip, one /11 screw driver, one /11 pair of 8eviPs trousers, one /11 travelling bag, and one /11

wallet containing ten pesos /31=.==1? the total value thereof is seven hundred pesos /3#==.==1 inclusive of the three hundred pesos /3%==.==1 cash. Thereafter, the man also dragged Cora@on .liman to her sisterPs house /pp. &--, T,$, <uly 1, 1(-#? pp. 11-1 , T,$, <une %=, 1(--1. <osephine "elisario, who was dragged by .leE )i4a>ue to her auntPs house which is 4ust twenty / =1 meters away, saw siE /&1 persons, one of whom is appellant .lfonso 3atalin, <r., outside the house of her aunt. <osephine "elisario was forced to call out her auntPs name and ask that the door be opened for her. 9hile the door was being opened, it was kicked by one of the siE /&1 persons. .lfonso 3atalin immediately went in, boEed the aunt of <osephine "elisario on the body and announced that they are staging a hold-up. The other companions of appellant .lfonso 3atalin, <r., including appellant .leE )i4a>ue, who were armed with knives, a bolo, and a gun also went in and restrained <osephine "elisarioPs cousins, namely !ogelia, <uliana, 3erpetua, !oy, and Bictoriano, who are all surnamed Carcillar /pp. 11-10, T,$, <une %=, 1(--? p. 11, T,$, <une (, 1(-(1. <osephine "elisario together with her aunt and cousins were all forced to lie face down on the floor of the sala /p. 10, T,$, <une %=, 1(--? p. #, T,$, Feb. 10, 1((=1. .ppellant .lfonso 3atalin got hold of )rs. Carcillar /<osephine "elisarioPs aunt and the mother of her cousins1, kicked and boEed the latter and eEclaimed2 R)oney, moneyS. RAt is money we want.S .ppellant .lfonso 3atalin forced )rs. Carcillar into a room where the latter gave him money /p. 1&, T,$, <une %=, 1(--? pp. #--, February 10, 1((=1. Then, appellants and their companions sei@ed the following personalities of the Carcillars2 /11 one ,eiko 0 wristwatch worth three thousand pesos /3%,===.==1, / 1 two / 1 pairs of ladyPs rings worth two thousand /3 ,===.==1, /%1 one /11 pair of earrings, and /'1 two / 1 travelling bags /p. (, T,$, February 10, 1((=1. !ogelia Carcillar was brought outside their house by appellant .leE )i4a>ue who was armed with a butcherPs knife and threatened to kill her if she will not lie down. "ecause of fear, she did as she was told /pp. 1=, 1&-1#, T,$, February 10, 1((=1. .ppellant .leE )i4a>ue forcibly removed her underwear and placed himself on top of !ogelia. ,he tried to resist but appellant .leE )i4a>ue pressed the tip of his knife at the formerPs neck and succeeded in having seEual intercourse with her /pp. 11-1 , ibid.1. Thereafter, appellant .leE )i4a>ue brought her inside the house and ordered her to lie face down on the floor again /pp. 1%-1', ibid.1. Then, one of the companions of appellant .leE )i4a>ue who was armed with a gun took her outside and brought her to a place not far from where she was raped /p. 1', ibid.1. This man, at the point of a gun, threatened to kill her if she will not obey his orders. !ogelia Carcillar, who feared for her life, was left with no choice but to obey the manPs orders. There, she was raped for the second time by this gun-wielding man /pp. 10-1&, ibid.1. 9hile !ogelia Carcillar was being raped, appellant .lfonso 3atalin was also outside the house standing on guard /p. 1-, ibid.1. <uliana Carcillar was likewise brought outside the house by appellant .leE )i4a>ue who, with his knife, tried to rape her but he initially failed because of her resistance. This angered appellant .leE )i4a>ue and he tried to kill <uliana Carcillar

by stabbing the latter but was prevailed upon not to do so by one of his companions /pp. 1 -10, T,$, <une (, 1(-(1. .ppellant .leE )i4a>ue, after delivering fist blows on the body of <uliana Carcillar, turned her over to one of his companions who was in the garden outside the house and armed with a gun. This man threatened her with the gun and mauled her. ,he was overpowered and he undressed her. 5e inserted his finger on her seE organ and eventually succeeded in having seEual intercourse with her /pp. 10-1#, ibid.1. Then, this companion of appellant .leE )i4a>ue brought <uliana Carcillar back inside the house and ordered to look for money. 9hen she told him that they have no more money, he kept on harming her. An the course thereof, he found and took a ,eiko wristwatch owned by 3erpetua Carcillar. Then, he brought her outside the house again where he had a brief conversation with appellants $estor !as and .lfonso 3atalin. ,he was then brought back inside the house and ordered to lie face down on the floor again. 9hile at this position, appellant .leE )i4a>ue approached her and brought her outside the house. ,he refused to obey appellant .leE )i4a>uePs order to lie down on the ground so he pushed her downwards. 5er strength gave out and he succeeded in raping her twice. ,he was then brought back inside the house /pp. 1-- 1, T,$, <une (, 1(-(1. <osephine "elisario, while laying face down on the floor of the sala, was dragged by appellant .leE )i4a>ue inside one of the rooms. 5e threatened her with his knife and was able to undress her. 5e fondled her breasts, pulled her pubic hair and eventually succeeded in having seEual intercourse with her. ,he was then left inside the room. Two companions of appellant .leE )i4a>ue came in bringing with them her cousins !ogelia and 3erpetua Carcillar. 6ne of them saw <osephine "elisario and brought her to another room. The man demanded money from her but she was not able to give him money. The man was also carrying a knife and threatened her with the same. ,he resisted when he was forcing her to lie down on the bed but her strength finally gave out. 5e likewise succeeded in having seEual intercourse with her. .fter raping her, the man took a piggy bank which was at the foot of the bed and brought her back to the room where she was first raped. 5er aunt and cousins were also inside the said room /pp. 1#- 0, T,$, <une %=, 1(--1. 3erpetua Carcillar suffered the same fate. 9hile laying face down on the floor of the living room, she was pulled by the heir by appellant .lfonso 3atalin and ordered to stand up. 9hen she stood up, she reali@ed that her sister were no longer there. .ppellant .lfonso 3atalin, armed with a double-bladed knife, brought her outside the house, ordered her to undress and lie down. "ecause of fear, 3erpetua Carcillar, who was then only thirteen /1%1 years old, obeyed appellant .lfonso 3atalin. 5e tried to force his penis into her vagina but did not succeed. Then, appellant .lfonso 3atalin handed her over to appellant $estor !as, a member of their group who was only about two / 1 arms length away. .ppellant $estor !as, armed with a double-bladed knife which he was pointing at 3erpetua Carcillar, ordered her to lie down. 5e fondled her breasts, kissed her, and succeeded in having seEual intercourse with her. .fter raping her, appellant $estor !as brought her back inside the house. 9hen she was returned inside the house, the intruders were still

demanding for money from her mother and were taking turns in beating the latter /pp. ', 10- %, T,$, <uly 1 , 1((=1. .ppellants left, together with the other assailants, taking with them the valuables stated earlier after threatening them not to report the matter to the police or else they will return and kill all of them /p. 1(, T,$, February 10, 1((=1. !eynaldo .liman was brought to !icardo 8adrido )emorial 5ospital where he received first aid. 5e was then brought to 9est Bisayas )edical Center located in )anduriao, Aloilo /pp. 1-- =, T,$, December 1&, 1(-&1 and was treated by Dr. ;dgardo Carmelo /p. ', T,$, )ay 1', 1(-&1. !eynaldo .liman sustained the following in4uries2 /11 hack wound, mid forearm, area ulnar side middle third forearm, and / 1 hack wound, left side of neck /pp. 0-&, ibid? ;Ehibit .1. !eynaldo .liman was confined in the hospital for almost three /%1 months and he spent more than eight thousand pesos /3-,===.==1 for medicines, food and other eEpenditures /p. 1(, T,$, December 1&, 1(-&1. Dr. 8eticia ,itchon ,antiago eEamined and treated <osephine "elisario two days after she was raped. . hematoma, about %E' inches in diameter, was found on the left shoulder of <osephine "elisario which could have been caused by forcing the latter to lie down on the ground. <osephine "elisario Rvagina admits two / 1 fingersS. Further, hematoma was noted in the hymen at nine oPclock and three oPclock positions and fresh lacerations was also noted at nine, eleven, and three oPclock positions. These are indications that a foreign ob4ect, which could be a human penis, was inserted in the vagina and caused the lacerations of the hymen /pp. &-(, T,$, ,eptember %, 1(-&1. !ogelia Carcillar, <uliana Carcillar and 3erpetua Carcillar were also eEamined and treated by Dr. 8eticia ,antiago but such was conducted three days after the incident /p. 1#, ibid1. . hematoma was noted in the occipital region of the head of !ogelia Carcillar /p. 1-, ibid1. 5er vagina admits two fingers snugly and the perineum has a lacerated wound which is one centimeter in length /pp. 1--1(, ibid? pp. -%, T,$, $ovember 1=, 1(-&1. Fresh lacerations were likewise noted in her hymen at eight, eleven and three oPclock positions /p. %, T,$, $ovember 1=, 1(-&1. Dr. ,antiago further testified that a foreign ob4ect was inserted in the vagina of !ogelia Carcillar /p. 1(, T,$, ,eptember %, 1(-&? p. %, T,$, $ovember 1=, 1(-&1. <uliana Carcillar, years old, sustained a hematoma in the forehead, left and right side of the face, upper right arm, uppermost and lower portions of the left thigh, occipital region of the head and left side of the mouth. ,he also sustained the following in4uries2 /11 W cm. lacerated wound on the left side of the lower lip, / 1 bite mark with hematoma on the left shoulder, /%1 1 cm. incised wounds on the right indeE finger and right thumb, /'1 ' inches incised wound on the right forearm, and /01 multiple abrasions at the back including the portion below the waistline, her vagina admits two fingers and fresh lacerations in the hymen were noted at eight, eleven, and four oPclock positions /pp. 1=-10, T,$, $ovember 1=, 1(-&1.

3erpetua Carcillar, 1% years old, sustained a 1 centimeter lacerated wound on the perineum which was also swollen. 5er vagina admits two fingers snugly /pp. --(, ibid1. . fresh laceration at siE oPclock position and a hematoma also at siE oPclock position were noted on her hymen /;Ehibit C, p. 10, !ecord1. /pp. %==-%11, !ollo.1 Denial and alibi were set up by accused-appellants based on their testimony and that of their witnesses, .le4andro Tabucan, Feli@ardo 8ebona, !hodora 8osaria, and Cristina +umban. The denials, together with other arguments, are summari@ed as follows2 .lfonso 3atalin .ccused-appellant .lfonso 3atalin alleges that his name was only included by <esus 8arang, whom he described as the landlord of <esusa Carcillar and the Carcillar sisters, to force him to reveal the names of the persons who staged the robbery and rape. Berily, he declared on the stand that when the victims saw him at the police station, two of them /<osephine "elisario and !eynaldo .liman1 even smiled at him /tsn, .ugust 1%, 1((%, pp. 1=-11, 1(- =1. An his brief, he argues that he was not positively identified, rationali@ing that when prosecution witness <osephine "elisario was asked on the stand if she recogni@ed Rthe person who called FherG brother !eynaldo,S said witness responded that she did not know the person who called her brother, and that she only recogni@ed the callerPs voice /tsn, .ugust 11, 1(--, pp. %=-%11. Further, accusedappellant 3atalin also alleges that he was arrested without a warrant. .leE )i4a>ue .ccused-appellant .leE )i4a>ue argues that in the sworn statement of !eynaldo .liman /p. %, AA !ecord1, there is no mention of his name nor that of accused-appellant 3atalin as the perpetrators of the crimes charged. )oreover, during the preliminary eEamination in the lower court, accused-appellant )i4a>ue was also not named as one of the malefactors. 5e likewise points out that in the police blotter, the first report mentioned that the alleged offenders were unknown persons. $o rape was reported. An the second report, it was blottered that the alleged offenders were four unidentified persons. .gain, no rape was reported. .ccusedappellant )i4a>ue likewise takes note of the report given by !ogelia Carcillar who merely narrated the robbery but did not report any rape. .ccording to this accused-appellant, the police authorities of Aloilo, )anduriao /also referred to in the record as R)andurriaoS1 received a complaint from a resident thereat that his television set was stolen previous to the incidents herein involved. .ccused-appellant )i4a>ue was suspected as the thief and was picked up by the agents of the )anduriao 3olice ,tation without any warrant of arrest and was thence detained for three days without any complaint /p. (%, !ollo1. )eanwhile, the robbery at 8ambunao, Aloilo was being flashed at all police stations in Aloilo. The arresting officers of the )anduriao 3olice ,tation, so accused-appellant )i4a>ue

contends, in order to save themselves from charges of arbitrary detention, immediately referred him for custodial investigation in regard to the 8ambunao robbery. Conse>uently, three days after his confinement, a criminal complaint for robbery with physical in4uries and another for robbery with rape was filed against him by the Chief of 3olice of 8ambunao, Aloilo. $estor !as The third accused-appellant, $estor !as, argues that his name was never mentioned by Dr. ;dgardo Carmelo, and that <osephine "elisario was merely led by the public prosecutor into mentioning his name. 5e also states that the witnessesP declarations as regards his identification are confusing and inconsistent /pp. =-- 1=, !ollo1. Further, it is contended that !ogelio Carcillar himself, when asked by the public prosecutor about what happened to his sister 3erpetua Carcillar, testified that R$othing happened to themS /p. 1=, id1. .nd when 3erpetua Carcillar and the other female prosecution witnesses reported the alleged incident to the police authorities, they never mentioned that they were raped. .s mentioned, all three accused-appellants, aside from denying the charges, also presented their respective alibis. .ccused-appellant 3atalin testified that he was at home with his parents, wife, and children, at 3andan, 8ambunao /tsn, .ugust 1%, 1((%, pp. 1&-1#1 at the time of the incident. .s corroborative witness, he presented Feli@ardo 8ebona, the person in charge of the plantation where he was working, who testified that accused-appellant 3atalin did not leave the plantation house from .ugust ( to 1 , 1(-' /tsn, 6ctober 10, 1((%, pp. '-01. For his part, accused-appellant )i4a>ue insists that he had no opportunity to get out of the farm where he was working which was located in )anduriao, Aloilo /tsn, )ay &, 1((%, p. &1. An <uly, 1(-0, he was arrested for theft of a television set and detained in the 8ambunao 4ail for investigation. .lthough three of the herein complainants were brought in front of his detention cell, he was not identified. Anstead, the policemen pointed to him and said, RThat is .leE )i4a>ue who raped you. Af you will not include him, he will file a case against you.S )oreover, he testified that he was mauled in 4ail /tsn, <uly (, 1((%, pp. 1=1%1. Defense witness, .le4andro Tabucan, neighbor of accused-appellant )i4a>ue, corroborated the latterPs alibi that on .ugust 11, 1(-', they had a drinking spree from & oPclock in the evening to 1 oPclock midnight, and accused-appellant )i4a>ue was not able to leave the premises in )anduriao. Tabucan also said that he saw )i4a>ue still asleep the following morning /tsn, .ugust &, 1((%, pp. '-0, 1=1. 8astly, accused-appellant $estor !as declared that he was in the province of .nti>ue /particularly, in Agbangkal, Dao1 on .ugust 11, 1(-' /tsn, December 1#, 1((%, p. '1. .s corroborative witness, he presented Cristina +umban, a vendor who testified that on .ugust 11, 1(-', she bought cassava and sweet potatoes from accused-appellant !as in Agbangkal, Dao, .nti>ue from % oPclock to 0 oPclock in the afternoon, and that he saw !as put the purchased items in a sack /tsn, )arch ', 1((', p. '1.

9e are not persuaded by the above posturings and are compelled to affirm. 6f primordial consideration in appellate matters is the legal principle that the assessment of the credibility of witnesses and their testimony is a matter best undertaken by the trial court because of its uni>ue opportunity to observe the witnesses firsthand and to note their demeanor, conduct, and attitude under grilling eEamination /People vs. @"brog, &- ,C!. (% F1((#G1. 9e generally uphold and respect this appraisal since, as an appellate court, we do not deal with live witnesses but only with the cold pages of a written record / People vs. Herbieto, &( ,C!. '# F1((#G1. . close eEamination of the record convinces us of the prosecution witnessesP credibility, particularly the ravished victims, who, for approEimately two agoni@ing hours, were sub4ected to a hellish nightmare occurring in the very privacy of their own homes. .s pointed out by the 6ffice of the ,olicitor +eneral in its consolidated brief, the defense was not able to prove any motive on the part of the private complainants to falsely testify that they were robbed and raped by accused-appellants. An fact, two of the rape victims, <osephine "elisario and !ogelia Carcillar, were even married to first cousins of accused-appellant 3atalin /pp. % #-% -, !ollo1, and would not ordinarily turn against a relative although this be by mere affinity unless they really suffered the fate they narrated. .ccused-appellants rely on the delay or vacillation on the part of the complaining witnesses. .s discussed above in their individual defenses, they emphasi@e that !eynaldo .liman failed to mention the names of the perpetrators in his sworn statement? that on .ugust 11, 1(-', !eynaldo instructed a relative, <esus 8arang, to report the hacking and robbery incidents at the 8ambunao 3olice Department, as well as the robbery committed in the Carcillar household, and that the police blotter stated that the alleged offenders were unknown persons but contained no report of any rape? and that !ogelia CarcillarPs report did not mention that she was raped. Time and again, we have ruled that delay in lodging a criminal accusation does not impair the credibility of a witness if such delay is satisfactorily eEplained /People vs. Bugarin, #% ,C!. %-' F1((#G1. .n eEamination of !eynaldo .limanPs sworn statement /p. %, A !ecord1 shows that he clearly identified one of the callers as accused-appellant .lfonso 3atalin. .nent his failure to mention accused-appellant )i4a>uePs name, he eEplained on cross-eEamination that he did not know yet the name of the person who attacked him with the bolo at the time he eEecuted his sworn statement /tsn, Dec. 1&, 1(-&, pp. %0, %--%(1. At was only later that he found out that the name of his assailant was .leE )i4a>ue. .s regards <esus 8arang, the fact that he mentioned Runknown personsS in his report does not affect !eynaldoPs categorical and positive identification of accused-appellants 3atalin and )i4a>ue as the perpetrators of the hacking and robbery incidents at his home. .nent the rape victims, it was clearly eEplained that their assailants told them not to report the matter to the police, otherwise, the assailants will return and kill

them /tsn, Feb. 10, 1((=, p. 1(1. The victims were overcome by fear and shame /ibid., p. %11. "esides, the delay in reporting the multiple rapes was not procrastination as this was only % days from the date of the incident /tsn, <une %=, 1(--, p. 1, a far shorter period than those mentioned in People vs. +eco"o / 0' ,C!. - F1((&G1 where we held that a delay of 1# or %0 days, or even & months, by a victim of rape in reporting the attack on her honor, does not detract from the veracity of her charge. The defense also notes certain inconsistencies in the testimony of the complaining witnesses, as follows2 /11 <uliana Carcillar testified earlier that the only light in the house came from a kerosene lamp placed on a small table which was eEtinguished as a result of it being knocked down, thus placing the house in darkness, while on the other hand, 3erpetua Carcillar, earlier said that although there was no more light in the house coming from the lamp, yet she could still see because the light of the moon still illuminated their house, allegedly through the plastic roofing? and / 1 the prosecution witnesses could not agree concerning the date they went to ,an Dionisio, Aloilo to identify accused-appellant $estor !as, as well as the date when !as was arrested. Anconsistencies in the testimony of witnesses, when referring only to minor details and collateral matters do not affect either the substance of their declaration, their veracity, or the weight of their testimony, and do not impair the credibility of such witnesses where there is consistency in relating the principal occurrence and the positive identification of the assailant / Su"alpong vs. Court of !ppeals, &- ,C!. #&' F1((#G1. An fact, honest inconsistencies on minor and trivial matters serve to strengthen rather than destroy the credibility of a witness to a crime, especially so when the crime is shocking to the conscience and numbing to the senses / People vs. !gunias, #( ,C!. 0 F1((#G1. 9ith respect to the defenses of denial and alibi, significantly, these defenses, if unsubstantiated by clear and convincing evidence, are negative and self-serving, deserve no weight in law, and cannot be given evidentiary value over the testimony of credible witnesses who testify on affirmative matters / People vs. +a.on, &( ,C!. 0-# F1((#G1. 3ositive identification, where categorical and consistent and without any showing of ill motive on the part of the eyewitnesses testifying on the matter, prevails over alibi and denial / People vs. <avier, &( ,C!. 1-1 F1((#G1. Berily, even if the defense of denial is supported by the testimony of friends of the accused, it deserves the barest consideration / People vs. +a"iao, '= ,C!. 0' F1((0G1. At will be given weight only if it would preclude any doubt that the accused could not have been physically present at the place of the crime or its vicinity at the time of commission / People vs. aquipil, '= ,C!. %1' F1((0G? People vs. e 5o9as, '1 ,C!. %&( F1((0G? People vs. #orin, '1 ,C!. #=( F1((0G? People vs. 5ivera, ' ,C!. & F1((0G? People vs. ela Aglesia, '1 ,C!. #1- F1((0G? People vs. *"ali, ' ,C!. 1# F1((0G? People vs. a.son, ' ,C!. 1 ' F1((0G? People vs. %spinosa, <r. '% ,C!. # F1((0G? People vs. Parica, '% ,C!. 00# F1((0G? People vs. %scoto, '' ,C!. -# F1((0G1.

.ccused-appellant )i4a>ue testified that on .ugust 11, 1(-', he was in )anduriao, Aloilo. The overland travel time from the town of )anduriao to 8ambunao is approEimately one hour and twenty minutes. .ccused-appellant 3atalin testified that he was in "arangay 3andan, which is merely ad4acent to 8ambunao. 8astly, accused-appellant $estor !as testified that he was in .nti>ue, a province neighboring Aloilo, which is approEimately two hours away therefrom via overland transportation. The defense tried to corroborate these alibis by presenting witnesses who testified on details which happened ten years prior to the date their testimony was given, and hence of naturally doubtful credibility. #utatis #utandi People vs. ?ueli,a / #( ,C!. 1'0 F1((#G1, considering that the places where accused-appellants alleged they were at could be traversed by motori@ed vehicles, it was not impossible that accused-appellants could not have been at the crime scene by # oPclock or #2%= oDclock in the evening on .ugust 11, 1(-'. )ore importantly and damming yet is the positive identification of their presence thereat by the victims. The trial court correctly appreciated the aggravating circumstances of nighttime and dwelling in Criminal Case $o. 1-%#& considering that nighttime facilitated the commission of the crime and the evidence shows that accused-appellants took advantage of the darkness to successfully consummate their plans / People vs. !pduhan, <r., ' ,C!. #(- F1(&-G1. Dwelling is clear from the abuse of confidence which the victims reposed in the offenders by opening the door to them, as well as the violation of the sanctity of privacy in the victimsP homes. 5e who goes to anotherPs house to slander him, hurt him, or do him wrong, is more guilty than he who offends him elsewhere /5e.es, The !evised 3enal Code J Criminal 8aw, Bol. A, 1((% ed., citing the dissenting opinion of <ustice Billareal in People vs. !"bis, &3hil. &%0 F1(%(G and =iada, 0th ed., Bol. AA, pp. % %-% '1. 9e further affirm the trial courtPs finding on the presence of the aggravating circumstance of band considering that !eynaldo .liman testified that accused-appellants 3atalin and two other companions /one of whom was later identified as accused-appellant )i4a>ue1 entered his home /tsn, p. #, Dec. 1&, 1(-&1. This was corroborated by <osephine "elisario who even saw four /'1 persons enter their gate, one of whom was accusedappellant 3atalin /tsn, p. 1=, <une %=, 1(--1. These same aggravating circumstances likewise attended the commission of the crime of robbery with multiple rape in Criminal Case $o. 1-%=0 and this was clearly testified to by the victims thereof who stated that five persons, including accused-appellant 3atalin, armed with a bolo, a knife, and a long gun, entered their dwelling that unfortunate night /tsn, <une (, 1(-(, p. 1=? February 10, 1((=, p. 01. 9ith respect to accused-appellants 3atalin and )i4a>uePs defense that they were arrested without warrants, suffice it to say that any ob4ection, defect, or irregularity attending an arrest must be made before the accused enters his plea /Padilla vs. C!, &( ,C!. '= F1((#G1. .s correctly pointed out in the 3eoplePs consolidated brief, the record shows no ob4ection was ever interposed prior to arraignment and trial /p. % ', !ollo1.

At is indubitable that there was conspiracy in the commission of the crimes in both Criminal Cases $o. 1-%#& and 1-%=0. An the first criminal case, the evidence clearly shows that accused-appellants 3atalin and )i4a>ue, together with unidentified companions, committed the crime charged. ,aid culprits shared the common criminal ob4ective of robbing the victims and inflicting wounds upon !eynaldo .liman on the occasion of the robbery. An the second case, all three accused-appellants /together with unidentified companions1, who were positively identified by the victims themselves, undoubtedly had the common criminal design of robbing the household of <esusa Carcillar, and of committing multiple rape on the occasion of the robbery. .ccused-appellant )i4a>ue dragged <osephine "elisario to her auntPs house and the other culprits followed suit. .ccused-appellant 3atalin boEed <esusa Carcillar and announced that they were staging a hold-up. .fter robbing the household, they proceeded in ravishing the four young female victims, !ogelia, <uliana, <osephine, and 3erpetua, one after the other, thus truly eEhibiting their concerted acts. Conspiracy eEists when two or more persons came to an agreement concerning the commission of a felony and decide to commit it / People vs. !barri, ' ,C!. %( F1((0G1. At cannot be merely presumed. ,imilar to the physical act constituting the crime itself, the elements of conspiracy must be proven beyond reasonable doubt. An the case at bar, although there was no proof of previous actual agreement among accused-appellants adduced at the trial J ...direct proof is not essential to show conspiracy. At need not be shown that the parties actually came together and agreed in eEpress terms to enter into and pursue a common design. The eEistence of the assent of minds which is involved in a conspiracy maybe, and from the secrecy of the crime, usually must be, inferred by the court from proof of facts and circumstances which, taken together, apparently indicate that they are merely parts of some complete whole. Af it is proved that two or more persons aimed by their acts towards the accomplishment of the same unlawful ob4ect, each doing a part so that their acts, though apparently independent, were in fact connected and cooperative, indicating a closeness of personal association and a concurrence of sentiment, then a conspiracy maybe inferred though no actual meeting among them to concert means is proved /People vs. Carbonel, '3hil. -&-? ,ee also People vs. =ira., 1'# ,C!. 1'&? People vs. Balignasa., +.!. $o. #&#'%, )ay , 1(( ? People vs. +alit, %= ,C!. '-&1... /People vs. #iranda., ' ,C!. & = F1((0G1. Berily, the participation of each of the accused-appellants was eEhibited by the straightforward testimony of the victims themselves. This brings us to the crucial issue raised by accused-appellants on the death penalty. .t the time the crimes charged were committed in 1(-', robbery with rape was punishable by death /.rt. (', !evised 3enal Code1. 5owever, by virtue of the ratification of the 1(-# Constitution, specifically 3aragraph /11, ,ection 1( of .rticle AAA thereof, the death penalty was abolished. 5ence, the argument that it could not be imposed upon accused-appellants. ,aid provision reads as follows2

,ec. 1( /11 ;Ecessive fines shall not be imposed, nor cruel, degrading or inhuman punishment inflicted. $either shall death penalty be imposed, unless, for compelling reasons involving heinous crimes, the Congress hereafter provides for it. .ny death penalty already imposed shall be reduced to reclusion perpetua. The constitutional abolition of the death penalty immediately took effect upon the ratification of the 1(-# Constitution. 5owever, said provision left the matter open for Congress to revive capital punishment at its discretion, Rfor compelling reasons involving heinous crimes.S ,imply stated, it did not prevent the legislature from reimposing the death penalty at some future time / Bernas, The 1(-# Constitution of the !epublic of the 3hilippines2 . Commentary, 1((& ed., pp. 0=#0=-1. Congress eventually restored the death penalty by virtue of !epublic .ct $o. #&0( or the Death 3enalty 8aw which took effect on <anuary 1, 1(('. .ccused-appellants are of the position that since the ConstitutionPs abolition of the death penalty had retroactive effect, being beneficial to the accused, the restoration or imposition of the death penalty on <anuary 1, 1((' would no longer cover them notwithstanding the fact that the decision was rendered by the trial court on <une 1', 1((0, when the Death 3enalty 8aw had already taken effect. .rticle 1 of the !evised 3enal Code provides that no felony shall be punishable by any penalty not prescribed by law prior to its commission. .t the time of the commission of the crime in 1(-', as held by the trial court, robbery with rape, if committed with the use of a deadly weapon or by two or more persons, was punishable by reclusion perpetua to death /.rticle ('F G, !evised 3enal Code Fas amended by 3residential Decree $o. #&#G1. True, in 1(-#, the Constitution abolished the death penalty sub4ect to CongressP future restoration thereof Rfor compelling reasons involving heinous crimes.S .t the time of such ratification, the instant case was still at its trial stage. $o penalty had as yet then been imposed. Considering that the provision provides that RFaGny death penalty already imposed shall be reduced to reclusion perpetua,S it is clear that the framers intended said provision to have a retroactive effect on cases pending without any penalty of death having been imposed yet. Conse>uently, upon ratification of the 1(-# Constitution, any death penalty already imposed is automatically J without need for any eEecutive action J commuted / Bernas, The 1(-# Constitution of the !epublic of the 3hilippines2 . Commentary, 1((& ed., p. 0=-1. The instant case poses the following issue2 9hen the death penalty was abolished in 1(-# and was retroactively applied to herein accused-appellants, did they gain a vested right thereto so that any future act restoring the death penalty would no longer cover themK .n affirmative answer would free accused-appellants from the fatal clutches of the death penalty. 6urs is a government of laws and not of men. The idea that an individual may be compelled to hold his life /or lose it1, or the means of living, at the mere will of another, is intolerable in any country where freedom prevails /=illavicencio vs.

-u)ban, %( 3hil ##- F1(1(G1. "efore us is a heinous crime indeed where 3eople were harmed, robbed, ravished, and abused in the defaced sanctity of their own homes. At is but human nature to feel some measure of loathing, disgust, and hatred for the offenders considering the inhuman aspect of the crime committed. 5owever, the ascendancy of the law is aEiomatic in our type of government. ;very official act must be based on and must conform to the authority of a valid law, lacking which the act must be re4ected /Cru,, 3hil. 3olitical 8aw, 1((& ed., p. 011. The nobility of our intention is insufficient. There is no doubt that the abolition of the death penalty in 1(-# retroactively affected and benefited accused-appellants. .rticle of the !evised 3enal Code provides that RFpGenal laws shall have a retroactive effect insofar as they favor the person guilty of a felony, who is not a habitual criminal . . . although at the time of the publication of such laws a final sentence has been pronounced and the convict is serving the same.S . statute is penal when it imposes punishment for an offense committed against the state /!quino, The !evised 3enal Code, Bol. A, 1(-# ed., p. 01. The above-cited provision of the Constitution is penal in character since it deals with the penalty to be imposed for capital crimes. This penal provision may be given retroactive effect during three possible stages of a criminal prosecution2 /a1 when the crime has been committed and the prosecution began? /b1 when sentence has been passed but the service has not begun? and /c1 when the sentence is being carried out /+regorio, Fundamentals of Criminal 8aw !eview, 1(-- ed., p. 1&#, citing %scalante vs. Santos, 0& 3hil '-% F1(% G1. An the light of the discussion above, there is no >uestion that the abolition of the death penalty benefits herein accused-appellants. 3erforce, the subse>uent reimposition of the death penalty will not affect them. The framers of the Constitution themselves state that the law to be passed by Congress reimposing the death penalty /!epublic .ct #&0(1 can only have prospective application / Bernas, The 1(-# Constitution the !epublic of the 3hilippines2 . Commentary, 1((& ed., p. 0=-, citing A !;C6!D, p. #'-? Bernas, The Antent of the 1(-& Constitution 9riters, 1((0 ed., p. #, citing A !ecord, p. #'#-#'-1. There is no >uestion that a person has no vested right in any rule of law which entitles him to insists that it shall remain unchanged for his benefit, nor has he a vested right in the continued eEistence of a statute which precludes its change or repeal, nor in any omission to legislate on a particular matter. 5owever, a subse>uent statute cannot be so applied retroactively as to impair a right that accrued under the old law /!gpalo, ,tatutory Construction, 1(-& ed., p. &', citing Benguet Consolidated #ining Co. vs. Pineda, (- 3hil #11 F1(0&G? -aurel vs. #isa, #& 3hil %# F1('&G1. Courts have thus given statutes strict construction to prevent their retroactive operation in order that the statutes would not impair or interfere with vested or eEisting rights. Clearly, accused-appellantsP right to be benefited by the abolition of the death penalty accrued or attached by virtue of .rticle of the !evised 3enal Code. This benefit cannot be taken away from them.

,ince the retroactive application of a law usually divests rights that have already become vested /Ben,onan vs. Court of !ppeals, =0 ,C!. 010 F1(( G1, the rule in statutory construction is that all statutes are to be construed as having only a prospective operation unless the purpose and intention of the legislature to give them a retrospective effect is eEpressly declared or is necessarily implied from the language used /Balatbat vs. Court of !ppeals, =0 ,C!. '1( F1(( G1. "y analogy, we apply the rule in labor law which provides that benefits accruing to workmen under the old law cannot be taken away from them by a succeeding law. An the case at bar, there is greater reason to apply this principle since the very taking of life is involved and is at issue. .s regards accused-appellantPs civil liability, the trial court, in Criminal Case $o. 1-%#&, correctly awarded 3#==.== to Cora@on .liman representing the total value of the cash and personal property forcibly taken, and 3-,===.== to !eynaldo .liman representing eEpenses incurred for medication and hospitali@ation. 5owever, in Criminal Case $o. 1-%=0, the trial court failed to order indemnification for the multiple rapes. Thus, in line with the pronouncement in People vs. =ictor /+.!. $o. 1 #(=%, <uly (, 1((-1 wherein we said2 6ne other point of concern has to be addressed. Andictments for rape continue unabated and the legislative response has been in the form of higher penalties. The Court believes that, on like considerations, the 4urisprudential path on the civil aspect should follow the same direction. 5ence, starting with the case at bar, if the crime of rape is committed or effectively >ualified by any of the circumstances under which the death penalty is authori@ed by the present amended law, the indemnity for the victim shall be in the increased amount of not less than 3#0,===.==. this is not only a reaction to the apathetic societal perception of the penal law and the financial fluctuations over time, but also an eEpression of the displeasure of the Court over the incidence of heinous crimes against chastity. accused-appellants should be made to pay 3%#0,===.== as indemnification for five counts of rape /considering that <uliana Carcillar was twice raped by accusedappellant )i4a>ue1 in addition to the sum of 3&,0==.== representing the value of the cash and articles that were taken from the victims. An line with the recent ruling in People vs. Prades /+.!. $o. 1 #0&(, <uly %=, 1((-1, moral damages in the amount of 30=,===.== for each count of rape, or a total of 3 0=,===.== is likewise awarded. 8astly, so that the instant case may serve as an ob4ect lesson to the public, eEemplary damages in the amount of 31=,=== per count of rape is further awarded /People vs. Burce, &( ,C!. (% F1((#G1. "ecause of the findings of conspiracy, accused-appellants 3atalin and )i4a>ue are 4ointly and severally liable for the amounts awarded in Criminal Case $o. 1-%#&? whereas all three accused-appellants are solidarily liable for the amounts awarded in Criminal Case $o. 1-%=0. (HEREFORE, finding the conviction of accused-appellants 4ustified by the evidence on record, the Court hereby .FFA!), said 4udgment, with the following modifications2

/a1 An Criminal Case $o. 1-%#&, for purposes of the Andeterminate ,entence 8aw, considering that the aggravating circumstances of band, nighttime, and dwelling attended the commission of the crime, accused-appellants 3atalin and )i4a>ue are hereby sentenced to an indeterminate penalty ranging from siE /&1 years of prision correccional, as minimum, to fourteen /1'1 years, eight /-1 months, and one /11 day of reclusion te"poral, as maEimum? /b1 .ccused-appellants 3atalin and )i4a>ue are 4ointly and severally held liable for the amounts awarded by the trial court in said criminal case, particularly, the amount of 3#==.== representing the total value of the cash and articles taken from Cora@on .liman, and 3-,===.== representing the eEpenses incurred by !eynaldo .liman for medication and hospitali@ation? /c1 An Criminal Case $o. 1-%=0, the penalty imposed is reduced to reclusion perpetua? and /d1 .side from the amount of 3&,0==.== already awarded by the trial court to the Carcillar family representing the value of the cash and articles taken, the victims in Criminal Case $o. 1-%=0 are hereby awarded an additional 3#0,=== as indemnity for each count of rape, 30=,===.== for each count of rape as moral damages, and 31=,=== for each count of rape as eEemplary damages, for which amounts all three accused-appellants are 4ointly and severally liable. ,6 6!D;!;D.

G.R. No. M70.9 /u"e 22, 1992 THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. ROGELIO MENGOTE y TE/AS, accused-appellant. +R$N, J.: .ccused-appellant !ogelio )engote was convicted of illegal possession of firearms on the strength mainly of the stolen pistol found on his person at the moment of his warrantless arrest. An this appeal, he pleads that the weapon was not admissible as evidence against him because it had been illegally sei@ed and was therefore the fruit of the poisonous tree. The +overnment disagrees. At insists that the revolver was validly received in evidence by the trial 4udge because its sei@ure was incidental to an arrest that was doubtless lawful even if admittedly without warrant. The incident occurred shortly before noon of .ugust -, 1(-#, after the 9estern 3olice District received a telephone call from an informer that there were three suspicious-looking persons at the corner of <uan 8una and $orth "ay "oulevard in Tondo, )anila. . surveillance team of plainclothesmen was forthwith dispatched to the place. .s later narrated at the trial by 3atrolmen !olando )ercado and .lberto <uan, 1 they there saw two men *looking from side to side,* one of whom was holding his abdomen. They approached these persons and identified themselves as policemen, whereupon the two tried to run away but were unable to escape because the other lawmen had surrounded them. The suspects were then searched. 6ne of them, who turned out to be the accused-appellant, was found with a .%- caliber ,mith and 9esson revolver with siE live bullets in the chamber. 5is companion, later identified as $icanor )orellos, had a fan knife secreted in his front right pants pocket. The weapons were taken from them. )engote and )orellos were then turned over to police head>uarters for investigation by the Antelligence Division. 6n .ugust 11, 1(-#, the following information was filed against the accusedappellant before the !egional Trial Court of )anila2 The undersigned accuses !6+;8A6 );$+6T; y T;<., of a violation of 3residential Decree $o. 1-&&, committed as follows2 That on or about .ugust -, 1(-#, in the City of )anila, 3hilippines, the said accused did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and knowingly have in his possession and under his custody and control a firearm, to wit2 one /11 ,erial $o. -# =-T cal. %*, X 9* bearing

to )engote as one of the robbers. 5e had duly reported the robbery to the police, indicating the articles stolen from him, including the revolver. 2 For his part, )engote made no effort to prove that he owned the firearm or that he was licensed to possess it and claimed instead that the weapon had been *3lanted* on him at the time of his arrest. 3 The gun, together with the live bullets and its holster, were offered as ;Ehibits ., ", and C and admitted over the ob4ection of the defense. .s previously stated, the weapon was the principal evidence that led to )engoteDs conviction for violation of 3.D. 1-&&. 5e was sentenced to reclusion perpetua. B At is submitted in the .ppellantDs "rief that the revolver should not have been admitted in evidence because of its illegal sei@ure. no warrant therefor having been previously obtained. $either could it have been sei@ed as an incident of a lawful arrest because the arrest of )engote was itself unlawful, having been also effected without a warrant. The defense also contends that the testimony regarding the alleged robbery in DangananDs house was irrelevant and should also have been disregarded by the trial court. The following are the pertinent provision of the "ill of !ights2 ,ec. . The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and sei@ures of whatever nature and for any purpose shall be inviolable, and no search warrant or warrant of arrest shall issue eEcept upon probable cause to be determined personally by the 4udge after eEamination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be sei@ed. ,ec. % /11. The privacy of communication and correspondence shall be inviolable eEcept upon lawful order of the court, or when public safety or order re>uires otherwise as prescribed by law. / 1 .ny evidence obtained in violation of this or the preceding section shall be inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding. There is no >uestion that evidence obtained as a result of an illegal search or sei@ure is inadmissible in any proceeding for any purpose. That is the absolute prohibition of .rticle AAA, ,ection %/ 1, of the Constitution. This is the celebrated eEclusionary rule based on the 4ustification given by <udge 8earned 5and that *only in case the prosecution, which itself controls the sei@ing officials, knows that it cannot profit by their wrong will the wrong be repressed.* The ,olicitor +eneral, while conceding the rule, maintains that it is not applicable in the case at bar. 5is reason is that the arrest and search of )engote and the sei@ure of the revolver from him were lawful under !ule 11%, ,ection 0, of the !ules of Court reading as follows2 ,ec. 0. !rrest without warrant when lawful. Y . peace officer or private person may, without a warrant, arrest a person?

without first having secured the necessary license or permit therefor from the proper authorities. "esides the police officers, one other witness presented by the prosecution was !igoberto Danganan, who identified the sub4ect weapon as among the articles stolen from him during the robbery in his house in )alabon on <une 1%, 1(-#. 5e pointed

/a1 9hen, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense? /b1 9hen an offense has in fact 4ust been committed, and he has personal knowledge of facts indicating that the person to be arrested has committed it? and /c1 9hen the person to be arrested is a prisoner who has escaped from a penal establishment or place where he is serving final 4udgment or temporarily confined while his case is pending, or has escaped while being transferred from one confinement to another. An cases failing under paragraphs /a1 and /b1 hereof, the person arrested without a warrant shall be forthwith delivered to the nearest police station or 4ail, and he shall be proceeded against in accordance with !ule 11 , ,ection #. 9e have carefully eEamined the wording of this !ule and cannot see how we can agree with the prosecution. 3ar. /c1 of ,ection 0 is obviously inapplicable as )engote was not an escapee from a penal institution when he was arrested. 9e therefore confine ourselves to determining the lawfulness of his arrest under either 3ar. /a1 or 3ar. /b1 of this section. 3ar. /a1 re>uires that the person be arrested /11 after he has committed or while he is actually committing or is at least attempting to commit an offense, / 1 in the presence of the arresting officer. These re>uirements have not been established in the case at bar. .t the time of the arrest in >uestion, the accused-appellant was merely *looking from side to side* and *holding his abdomen,* according to the arresting officers themselves. There was apparently no offense that had 4ust been committed or was being actually committed or at least being attempted by )engote in their presence. The ,olicitor +eneral submits that the actual eEistence of an offense was not necessary as long as )engoteDs acts *created a reasonable suspicion on the part of the arresting officers and induced in them the belief that an offense had been committed and that the accused-appellant had committed it.* The >uestion is, 9hat offenseK 9hat offense could possibly have been suggested by a person *looking from side to side* and *holding his abdomen* and in a place not eEactly forsakenK These are certainly not sinister acts. .nd the setting of the arrest made them less so, if at all. At might have been different if )engote bad been apprehended at an ungodly hour and in a place where he had no reason to be, like a darkened alley at % oDclock in the morning. "ut he was arrested at 112%= in the morning and in a crowded street shortly after alighting from a passenger 4eep with A his companion. 5e was not skulking in the shadows but walking in the clear light of day. There was nothing clandestine about his being on that street at that busy hour in the bla@e of the noonday sun.

6n the other hand, there could have been a number of reasons, all of them innocent, why his eyes were darting from side to side and be was holding his abdomen. Af they eEcited suspicion in the minds of the arresting officers, as the prosecution suggests, it has nevertheless not been shown what their suspicion was all about. An fact, the policemen themselves testified that they were dispatched to that place only because of the telephone call from the informer that there were *suspicious-looking* persons in that vicinity who were about to commit a robbery at $orth "ay "oulevard. The caller did not eEplain why he thought the men looked suspicious nor did he elaborate on the impending crime. An the recent case of People v. #al"stedt, . the Court sustained the warrantless arrest of the accused because there was a bulge in his waist that eEcited the suspicion of the arresting officer and, upon inspection, turned out to be a pouch containing hashish. An People v. Claudio, H the accused boarded a bus and placed the buri bag she was carrying behind the seat of the arresting officer while she herself sat in the seat before him. 5is suspicion aroused, be surreptitiously eEamined the bag, which he found to contain mari4uana. 5e then and there made the warrantless arrest and sei@ure that we subse>uently upheld on the ground that probable cause had been sufficiently established. The case before us is different because there was nothing to support the arresting officersD suspicion other than )engoteDs darting eyes and his hand on his abdomen. "y no stretch of the imagination could it have been inferred from these acts that an offense had 4ust been committed, or was actually being committed, or was at least being attempted in their presence. This case is similar to People v. !"innudin, 7 where the Court held that the warrantless arrest of the accused was unconstitutional. This was effected while be was coming down a vessel, to all appearances no less innocent than the other disembarking passengers. 5e had not committed nor was be actually committing or attempting to commit an offense in the presence of the arresting officers. 5e was not even acting suspiciously. An short, there was no probable cause that, as the prosecution incorrectly suggested, dispensed with the constitutional re>uirement of a warrant. 3ar. /b1 is no less applicable because its no less stringent re>uirements have also not been satisfied. The prosecution has not shown that at the time of )engoteDs arrest an offense had in fact 4ust been committed and that the arresting officers had personal )nowledge of facts indicating that )engote had committed it. .ll they had was hearsay information from the telephone caller, and about a crime that had yet to be committed. The truth is that they did not know then what offense, if at all, had been committed and neither were they aware of the participation therein of the accused-appellant. At was only later, after Danganan had appeared at the 3olice head>uarters, that they learned of the robbery in his house and of )engoteDs supposed involvement therein. M .s for the illegal possession of the firearm found on )engoteDs person, the

policemen discovered this only after he had been searched and the investigation conducted later revealed that he was not its owners nor was he licensed to possess it. "efore these events, the 3eace officers had no knowledge even of )engoteD identity, let alone the fact /or suspicion1 that he was unlawfully carrying a firearm or that he was involved in the robbery of DangananDs house. An the landmark case of People v. Burgos, 9 this Court declared2 :nder ,ection &/a1 of !ule 11%, the officer arresting a person who has 4ust committed, is committing, or is about to commit an offense must have personal )nowledge of the fact. /he offense "ust also be co""itted in his presence or within his view. /,ayo v. Chief of 3olice, -= 3hil. -0(1. /;mphasis supplied1 EEE EEE EEE An arrests without a warrant under ,ection &/b1, however, it is not enough that there is reasonable ground to believe that the person to be arrested has committed a crime. ! cri"e "ust in fact or actuall. have been co""itted first. /hat a cri"e has actuall. been co""itted is an essential precondition. At is not enough to suspect that a cri"e "a. have been co""itted. /he fact of the co""ission of the offense "ust be undisputed. The test of reasonable ground applies only to the identity of the perpetrator. /;mphasis supplied1 This doctrine was affirmed in !lih v. Castro, 10 thus2 Af the arrest was made under !ule 11%, ,ection 0, of the !ules of Court in connection with a crime about to be committed, being committed, or 4ust committed, what was that crimeK There is no allegation in the record of such a falsification. 3arenthetically, it may be observed that under the !evised !ule 11%, ,ection 0/b1, the officer "a)ing the arrest "ust have personal )nowledge of the ground therefor as stressed in the recent case of People v. Burgos. /;mphasis supplied1 At would be a sad day, indeed, if any person could be summarily arrested and searched 4ust because he is holding his abdomen, even if it be possibly because of a stomach-ache, or if a peace officer could clamp handcuffs on any person with a shifty look on suspicion that he may have committed a criminal act or is actually committing or attempting it. This simply cannot be done in a free society. This is not a police state where order is eEalted over liberty or, worse, personal malice on the part of the arresting officer may be 4ustified in the name of security. There is no need to discuss the other issues raised by the accused-appellant as the ruling we here make is sufficient to sustain his eEoneration. 9ithout the evidence of the firearm taken from him at the time of his illegal arrest, the prosecution has lost its most important eEhibit and must therefore fail. The testimonial evidence against )engote /which is based on the said firearm1 is not sufficient to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt of the crime imputed to him.

9e commend .tty. Bioleta Calvo-Drilon for her able and spirited defense of the accused-appellant not only in the brief but also in the reply brief, which she did not have to file but did so 4ust the same to stress the constitutional rights of her client. The fact that she was acting only as a counsel de oficio with no eEpectation of material reward makes her representation even more commendable. The Court feels that if the peace officers had been more mindful of the provisions of the "ill of !ights, the prosecution of the accused-appellant might have succeeded. .s it happened, they allowed their over-@ealousness to get the better of them, resulting in their disregard of the re>uirements of a valid search and sei@ure that rendered inadmissible the vital evidence they had invalidly sei@ed. This should be a lesson to other peace officers. Their impulsiveness may be the very cause of the ac>uittal of persons who deserve to be convicted, escaping the clutches of the law because, ironically enough, it has not been observed by those who are supposed to enforce it. 95;!;F6!;, the appealed decision is !;B;!,;D and ,;T .,AD;. The accused-appellant is .CI:ATT;D and ordered released immediately unless he is validly detained for other offenses. $o costs. ,6 6!D;!;D.

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, appellee, vs. MI+HAEL MONTE y A!*$L, appellant. *E+ISION

%NARES&SANTIAGO, J.' This is an appeal from the decision of the !egional Trial Court of )anila, "ranch 1-, in Criminal Case $o. ((-1#1 -, finding appellant )ichael )onte guilty beyond reasonable doubt of violation of .rticle AAA, ,ection 10 of !epublic .ct &' 0, otherwise known as the Dangerous Drugs .ct of 1(# , F G as amended, and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua, with all the accessory penalties provided by law, and to pay the costs. .ppellant )ichael )onte was charged with violation of .rticle AAA, ,ection 10, of !. &' 0, as amended, in an information which reads2 That on or about )arch 1, 1(((, in the City of )anila, 3hilippines, the said accused, not having been authori@ed by law to sell, dispense, deliver, transport or distribute any regulated drug, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully, and knowingly sell or offer for sale five /01 heat-sealed transparent plastic bags each containing white crystalline substance with a total weight FofG & . # grams known as shabu containing methamphetamine hydrochloride, which is a regulated drug. Contrary to law.F%G 9hen arraigned, appellant pleaded not guilty. Thereafter, trial ensued. The following facts are established2 6n )arch 1, 1(((, at about &2== in the morning, ,36 Birgilio )artine@ of the )etro )anila Drug ;nforcement +roup, $ational Capital !egion 3olice 6ffice /))D;+-$C!361, Camp "agong Diwa, Taguig )etro )anila, received a call from a confidential informant about the illegal drug activities of appellant )ichael )onte on 3. Casal ,treet, ,an )iguel )anila.F'G . team of eight operatives, ,361 Asagani <imene@ included, was organi@ed to conduct surveilance and buy-bust operations.F0G They prepared fake money which were arranged in a bundle placed in between genuine 30==.== bills.F&G ,361 <imene@ was designated as the poseur buyer. F#G :pon arriving at 3. Casal ,treet, the confidential informant met ,361 <imene@ and introduced him to appellant as a prospective buyer of 0= grams of shabu. .ppellant told them that he can deliver the desired >uantity of shabu at 30=,===.== per 0= gram. .fter ,361 <imene@ agreed to the price, appellant told him to come back at 1=2== in the evening of the same day.F-G The team returned to the scene at the designated time and positioned themselves strategically around the area. .fter a few minutes, the informant and appellant arrived and, after a brief conversation, ,361 <imene@ handed the bundle of money to appellant, who in turn gave <imene@ white crystalline substance contained in five plastic sachets. Ammediately, ,361 <imene@ introduced himself as a police officer and simultaneously raised his right hand as a pre-arranged signal to his companions that the sale had been consummated. .ppellant tried to escape, but he was arrested by ,361 <imene@, with the help of his companions who had rushed to the scene after seeing the signal. ,361 <imene@ confiscated from appellant the bundle of money. .ppellant was then brought to the ))D;+-$C!36 station for
F1G

investigation. The five plastic sachets containing the white crystalline substance, which weighed & . # grams were forwarded to the 3$3 Crime 8aboratory for eEamination and were found positive for methamphetamine hydrochloride or shabu, a regulated drug. .ppellant denied the charge and claimed that he was framed up by the police. 5e alleged that on )arch 1, 1(((, at %2%= in the afternoon, his friend, a certain ,herman, and the latterPs female companion, dropped by his sisterPs house where he was then staying. ,herman invited him to go with them to the 8uneta 3ark and later to have a snack at <ollibee.F(G They boarded a black )itsubishi 3a4ero. .s soon as they passed .yala bridge, they were blocked by a 5onda Civic. ;ight armed men in civilian clothes alighted therefrom and introduced themselves as police officers. .ppellant and his companions were ordered to alight from the 3a4ero and were frisked.F1=G .fterwards, appellant was made to board the 5onda Civic while ,herman and his female companion boarded the 3a4ero. F11G Anside the 5onda Civic, appellant was mauled by the police officers. F1 G 5e was brought to the Drug ;nforcement :nit in "icutan, Taguig, where he was tortured by putting a plastic bag over his head and tying it around his neck.F1%G 5e was told to put up a bailbond for his release. F1'G 6n <uly 1=, == , the trial court rendered a decision convicting appellant of the crime charged, the dispositive portion of which reads2 95;!;F6!;, the accused, )ichael )onte y .bdul, is hereby convicted of the crime of Biolation of ,ection 10, .rticle AAA of !... &' 0 as amended without any aggravating andNor mitigating circumstances, and sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua with all the accessory penalties provided by law and to pay the costs. The & . # grams of shabu is forfeited in favor of the government and is ordered turned over to the Dangerous Drugs "oard, for proper disposition. ,6 6!D;!;D.F10G 5ence this appeal, raising the following errors2 A. T5; C6:!T ! ?*@ +!.B;87 ;!!;D A$ +ABA$+ 9;A+5T .$D C!;D;$C; T6 T5; :$";8A;B.8; T;,TA)6$7 6F 3!6,;C:TA6$ 9AT$;,, ,361 A,.+.$A <A);$;C .$D A$ +ABA$+ A$ 5A, F.B6! T5; 3!;,:)3TA6$ 6F !;+:8.!AT7 A$ T5; 3;!F6!).$C; 6F D:T7 D;,3AT; T5; .33.!;$T A!!;+:8.!ATA;, A$ T5; ).$$;! T5;7 C6$D:CT;D T5; .88;+;D ":7-":,T 63;!.TA6$. AA. T5; C6:!T ! ?*@ +!.B;87 ;!!;D A$ +ABA$+ ,C.$T C6$,AD;!.TA6$ T6 T5; ;BAD;$C; 3!;,;$T;D "7 T5; .CC:,;D .33;88.$T. AAA. T5; C6:!T ! ?*@ +!.B;87 ;!!;D A$ FA$DA$+ T5.T T5; +:A8T 6F T5; .CC:,;D-.33;88.$T F6! T5; C!A);

C5.!+;D 5., ";;$ 3!6B;$ ";76$D !;.,6$."8; D6:"T.F1&G The issue of whether or not the prosecution was able to prove beyond reasonable doubt the guilt of appellant )ichael )onte is the core of the instant appeal. .ppellant argues that the trial court failed to consider the irregularities in the conduct of the buy-bust operation which could have eEculpated him from criminal liability. 5e said that while the prosecution claimed that two genuine 0== peso bills were put, one on top and the other at the bottom of the fake money, it failed to show the source of the said bills, which creates doubt as to their eEistence and to the prosecutionPs claim that said genuine 0== peso bills were taken from appellant. .ppellant maintains that as a standard operating procedure in buy-bust operations, the law enforcers put mark on the money bills and have them photocopied. An the case at bar, the police officers who participated in the buy bust neither marked nor photocopied the two 0== peso bills. .lso, ,361 <imene@, the lone prosecution witness, testified that he confiscated from appellant & . # grams of shabu. 5owever, he did not present the "ooking ,heet and .rrest !eport which would show that shabu was indeed taken from appellant. The appeal is without merit. An the prosecution for the sale of regulated drugs, like shabu, what is material is the proof that the transaction or sale transpired, coupled with the presentation in court of the corpus delicti.F1#GCorpus delicti is the body or substance of the crime, and establishes the fact that a crime has been actually committed. F1-G At has two elements, namely2 /11 proof of the occurrence of a certain event? and / 1 some personPs criminal responsibility for the act.F1(G ,361 <imene@, the poseur-buyer, clearly established the above elements, vi,2 an illegal sale of the regulated drug actually took place and appellant was the author thereof. 5e testified as follows2 3rosecutor 3anfilo 3abelonia, <r. to witness I2 9hen you arrived at that bridge F3. CasalG, was the accused already thereK .2 5e was not yet there, ,ir. I2 5ow long did you waitK .2 .round 1= minutes then the accused arrived. I2 The accused arrived together with the confidential informantK .2 7es, ,ir. I2 .fter the accused arrived together with the confidential informant, what transpiredK .2 5e asked me the money and A also asked him where is the shabu, and when A handed the money to him A asked him to hand to me the shabu and when the shabu was handed to me, A introduced myself as police officer and at the same time A held the accused and signaled for my companions to approach us.F =G

The result of the laboratory eEamination conducted on the white crystalline substance confiscated from appellant and forwarded to the 9estern 3olice District bolsters the foregoing testimony that, indeed, what was sold by appellant was shabu, a regulated drug. The results of the eEamination states2 FA$DA$+,2 Iualitative eEamination conducted on the above-stated specimens gave 36,ATAB; results to the tests for methylamphetamine hydrochloride, a regulated drug. E E E C6$C8:,A6$2 ,pecimen . contains methylamphetamine hydrochloride, a regulated drug. E E E.F 1G )oreover, the prosecution witness was able to present and identify in court the confiscated drugs, which are corroborating pieces of evidence of the corpus delicti, thus2 3rosecutor <aime +uray to witness2 I2 .nd you also testified that you were handed by the accused 0 plastic sachets containing white crystalline substanceK .2 7es, sir. I2 Af shown to you these five plastic sachets containing white crystalline substance which you said was handed to you by the accused, will you be able to identify the sameK .2 7es, sir. I2 )ay A invite you in the table, )r. witness, and eEamine these five plastic sachets which have been marked as ;Ehibit F, F-1 to F-0 for the prosecution and tell us what relation is these five plastic sachets to the plastic sachets which you stated that was handed to you by the accusedK .2 These were the shabu that were sold to me by the accused, sir.F
G

9e find no reason to deviate from the findings of the trial court. At is very clear from the testimony of the prosecution witness that his narration of events was positive, probable and in accord with human eEperience. At bears the badges of truth, such that it is eEtremely difficult for a rational mind not to find it credible. ,361 <imene@Ps testimony was coherent, straightforward and unperturbed even under the intense cross-eEamination by the defense and searching >uestions by the trial court. .ppellant claims that there were irregularities in his arrest. 5e said that instead of bringing him to the 9estern 3olice District on :nited $ations .venue, )anila, the arresting officers brought him to the Drug ;nforcement :nit in "icutan, Taguig, )etro )anila, in clear violation of the mandate of ,ection 0, !ule 11% of the !ules of Court.F %G Further, the arresting officers did not inform him of his basic

constitutional rights. 5e was not afforded the assistance of a competent and independent counsel of his choice during custodial investigation. 9e find nothing irregular in the turn-over of appellant to the Drug ;nforcement :nit in Taguig, )etro )anila, although the !ules provide that persons arrested without a warrant shall be delivered to the nearest police station or 4ail. .s correctly argued by the ,olicitor +eneral, the place where appellant was brought after the arrest for in>uest is immaterial to the ultimate issue of whether he peddled illicit drugs. )oreover, the records show that appellant was brought to the Drug ;nforcement :nit in Taguig, )etro )anila because the arresting officers belonged to the )etro )anila Drug ;nforcement +roup, $ational Capital !egion 3olice 6ffice /))D;+-$C!361, Camp "agong Diwa, Taguig, )etro )anila, which office was more speciali@ed in the area of drug investigation. An People v. +arcia,F 'G it was held that there was nothing irregular in the turnover of appellant, who was arrested without a warrant for illegal possession of mari4uana, to the Criminal Anvestigation ,ervice /CA,1 6ffice at the "aguio 9ater District Compound instead of bringing him to the nearest police station, since the CA, office was more speciali@ed in the area of investigation of drug offenses. $evertheless, considering that appellant had entered his plea and actively participated in the trial of the case, he submitted to the 4urisdiction of the trial court, thereby curing any defect in his arrest.F 0G ;ven assuming that appellant was not afforded the assistance of a counsel of his own choice, the proceedings in the trial court will not necessarily be struck down because no incriminatory evidence in the nature of a compelled or involuntary confession or admission was used as evidence against him. .ppellantPs guilt was clearly established by the evidence adduced by the prosecution, which consisted of the testimony of ,361 <imene@, the arresting officer and poseur buyer, together with the documentary and ob4ect evidence which were formally offered and admitted in evidence in the trial court. .nent the appellantPs defense that he was framed-up, we are aware that in some instances, law enforcers resort to the practice of planting evidence to eEtract information or even to harass civilians.F &G 5owever, like alibi, frame-up is viewed with disfavor for it is self-serving, can easily be fabricated and is a common standard defense ploy in most prosecutions for violations of the Dangerous Drugs .ct. F #G Clear and convincing evidence is re>uired to prove the defense. F -G An the case at bar, apart from claiming that he was a victim of frame-up and eEtortion by the narcotics agents of the ))D;+-$C!36, appellant failed to present any evidence to substantiate his claim. 5e testified that he was accompanied by a friend, a certain ,herman and the latterPs female companion, when the vehicle they were boarding was blocked by the 5onda Civic being used by the narcotics operatives. 5owever, he failed to present in court these two persons to corroborate his claim.

;verything considered, we find that the prosecution has established appellantPs guilt beyond reasonable doubt. .ccordingly, he must suffer for his serious crime of being a merchant of death, a Rkiller without mercy who poisons the mind and deadens the bodyS of his victims.F (G The penalty prescribed under ,ection 10 of .rticle AAA, in relation to ,ection = of .rticle AB, of the Dangerous Drugs .ct of 1(# , as amended by !. #&0(, for unauthori@ed sale of == grams or more of shabu or methylamphetamine hydrochloride is reclusion perpetua to death and a fine ranging from five hundred thousand pesos to ten million pesos. An the case at bar, as the penalty of reclusion perpetua to death consists of two / 1 indivisible penalties, appellant was correctly meted the lesser penalty of reclusion perpetua, conformably with .rticle &% / 1 of the !evised 3enal Code that when there are neither mitigating nor aggravating circumstances in the commission of the deed, the lesser penalty shall be applied. 5owever, we note that the trial court did not impose a fine. The imposition of fine is mandatory in cases of conviction of unauthori@ed sale of regulated drugs. Courts may fiE any amount within the limits established by law and? in fiEing the amount in each case, attention shall be given, not only to the mitigating and aggravating circumstances, but more particularly to the wealth or means of the culprit.F%=G .s stated above, the law prescribes the penalty of reclusion perpetua to death and a fine ranging from five hundred thousand pesos to ten million pesos if the shabu involved weighs == grams or more. Considering that the amount of shabu sold in this case weighed & . # grams, we deem the amount of Five 5undred Thousand 3esos /30==,===.==1 reasonable.F%1G (HEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, the decision of the !egional Trial Court of )anila, "ranch 1-, in Criminal Case $o. ((-1#1 -, finding appellant )ichael )onte y .bdul guilty beyond reasonable doubt of violation of .rticle AAA, ,ection 10 of !epublic .ct $o. &' 0, as amended, and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua with all the accessory penalties provided by law, is .FFA!);D, with the )6DAFAC.TA6$ that appellant is further ordered to pay a fine in the amount of Five 5undred Thousand 3esos /30==,===.==1. Costs de oficio. SO OR*ERE*. avide, <r., C.<., (Chair"an), =itug, Carpio, and !,cuna, <<., concur. G.R. No3. 172070&72 /u"e 1, 2007

)I+ENTE P. LA*LA*, NATHANAEL S. SANTIAGO, RAN*ALL !. E+HANIS, a"# RE% +LARO +. +ASAM!RE, 3etitioners, vs. SENIOR STATE PROSE+$TOR EMMAN$EL %. )ELAS+O, SENIOR STATE PROSE+$TOR /OSELITA +. MEN*ONA, SENIOR STATE PROSE+$TOR AILEEN MARIE S. G$TIERREN, STATE PROSE+$TOR

IR(IN A. MARA%A, a"# STATE PROSE+$TOR MER!A A. (AGA, 2" 41e2r 7a<a724y a3 8e8ber3 o= 41e *e<ar48e"4 o= /u3427e <a"e9 o= <ro3e7u4or3 2";e3426a42"6 I.S. No3. 200H&22., 200H&22H a"# 200H&23B, /$STI+E SE+RETAR% RA$L M. GONNALEN, *IRE+TOR GENERAL ART$RO +. LOMI!AO, 2" 123 7a<a724y a3 +12e=, P1292<<2"e Na42o"a9 Po927e, PO+S$PT. RO*OLFO !. MEN*ONA, /R., a"# POS$PT. %OLAN*A G. TANIG$E,!espondents. E- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -E G.R. No3. 17207B&7H /u"e 1, 2007 LINA L. MANA, /OEL G. )IRA*OR, SAT$RNINO +. O+AMPO, TEO*ORO A. +ASIPO, +RISPIN !. !ELTRAN, a"# RAFAEL ). MARIANO, 3etitioners, vs. RA$L M. GONNALEN, 2" 123 7a<a724y a3 Se7re4ary o= 41e *e<ar48e"4 o= /u3427e, /O)EN+ITO R. N$PO, 2" 123 7a<a724y a3 +12e= S4a4e Pro3e7u4or, 41e Pa"e9 o= I";e3426a42"6 Pro3e7u4or3 7o8<o3e# o= EMMAN$EL %. )ELAS+O, /OSELITA +. MEN*ONA, AILEEN MARIE S. G$TIERREN, IR(IN A. MARA%A a"# MER!A A. (AGA CPa"e9D, RO*OLFO !. MEN*ONA, 2" 123 7a<a724y a3 A742"6 *e<u4y *2re74or, *2re74ora4e =or I";e3426a42o" a"# *e4e742;e Ma"a6e8e"4 C*I*MD, %OLAN*A G. TANIG$E, 2" 1er 7a<a724y a3 A742"6 E5e7u42;e O==27er o= *I*M, 41e *EPARTMENT OF /$STI+E C*O/D, a"# 41e PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLI+E CPNPD, !espondents. E- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -E G.R. No. 17.013 /u"e 1, 2007 +RISPIN !. !ELTRAN, 3etitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, SE+RETAR% RA$L M. GONNALEN, 2" 123 7a<a724y a3 41e Se7re4ary o= /u3427e a"# o;era99 3u<er2or o= 41e Pub927 Pro3e7u4or3, HONORA!LE EN+ARNA+ION /A/A G. MO%A, 2" 1er 7a<a724y a3 Pre32#2"6 /u#6e o= Re62o"a9 Tr2a9 +our4 o= Ma?a42 +24y, !ra"71 1BH, a"# HONORA!LE ELMO M. ALAME*A, 2" 123 7a<a724y a3 Pre32#2"6 /u#6e o= Re62o"a9 Tr2a9 +our4 o= Ma?a42 +24y, !ra"71 1.0, !espondents. D;CA,A6$ +ARPIO, J.: The Case These are consolidated petitions for the writs of prohibition and certiorari to en4oin petitionersP prosecution for !ebellion and to set aside the rulings of the Department of <ustice /D6<1 and the !egional Trial Court of )akati City /!TC )akati1 on the investigation and prosecution of petitionersP cases. The Facts

3etitioner in +.!. $o. 1#0=1%, Crispin ". "eltran /"eltran1, and petitioners in +.!. $os. 1# =#'-#&, 8i@a 8. )a@a /)a@a1, <oel +. Birador /Birador1, ,aturnino C. 6campo /6campo1, Teodoro .. CasiZo /CasiZo1, and !afael B. )ariano /)ariano1,1 are members of the 5ouse of !epresentatives representing various partylist groups. 3etitioners in +.!. $os. 1# =#=-# are private individuals. 3etitioners all face charges for !ebellion under .rticle 1%' in relation to .rticle 1%0 of the !evised 3enal Code in two criminal cases pending with the !TC )akati. +.!. $o. 1#0=1% /The "eltran 3etition1 Following the issuance by 3resident +loria )acapagal-.rroyo of 3residential 3roclamation $o. 1=1# on ' February ==& declaring a *,tate of $ational ;mergency,* police officers % arrested "eltran on 0 February ==&, while he was en route to )arilao, "ulacan, and detained him in Camp Crame, Iue@on City. "eltran was arrested without a warrant and the arresting officers did not inform "eltran of the crime for which he was arrested. 6n that evening, "eltran was sub4ected to an in>uest at the Iue@on City 5all of <ustice for Anciting to ,edition under .rticle 1' of the !evised 3enal Code based on a speech "eltran allegedly gave during a rally in Iue@on City on ' February ==&, on the occasion of the = th anniversary of the ;D,. !evolution. The in>uest was based on the 4oint affidavit of "eltranPs arresting officers who claimed to have been present at the rally. The in>uest prosecutor'indicted "eltran and filed the corresponding Anformation with the )etropolitan Trial Court of Iue@on City /)eTC1.0 The authorities brought back "eltran to Camp Crame where, on # February ==&, he was sub4ected to a second in>uest, with 1 st 8t. 8awrence ,an <uan /,an <uan1, this time for !ebellion. . panel of ,tate prosecutors & from the D6< conducted this second in>uest. The in>uest was based on two letters, both dated # February ==&, of 7olanda Tanigue /Tanigue1 and of !odolfo )endo@a /)endo@a1. Tanigue is the .cting ;Eecutive 6fficer of the Criminal Anvestigation and Detection +roup /CAD+1, 3hilippine $ational 3olice /3$31, while )endo@a is the .cting Deputy Director of the CAD+. The letters referred to the D6< for appropriate action the results of the CAD+Ps investigation implicating "eltran, the petitioners in +.!. $os. 1# =#'-#&, ,an <uan, and several others as *leaders and promoters* of an alleged foiled plot to overthrow the .rroyo government. The plot was supposed to be carried out 4ointly by members of the Communist 3arty of the 3hilippines /C331 and the )akabayang Mawal ng 3ilipinas /)M31, which have formed a *tactical alliance.* 6n # February ==&, the D6< panel of prosecutors issued a !esolution finding probable cause to indict "eltran and ,an <uan as *leadersNpromoters* of !ebellion. The panel then filed an Anformation with the !TC )akati. The Anformation alleged that "eltran, ,an <uan, and other individuals *conspiring and confederating with each other, E E E, did then and there willfully, unlawfully, and feloniously form a tactical alliance between the C33N$3., renamed as 3artidong Momunista ng 3ilipinas /3M31 and its armed regular members as Matipunan ng .nak ng "ayan /M."1 with the )akabayang Mawal ng 3ilipinas /)M31 and thereby rise publicly and take up arms against the duly constituted government, E E E.* # The Anformation, docketed as

Criminal Case $o. =&-'0 , was raffled to "ranch 1%# under 3residing <udge <enny 8ind !. .ldecoa-Delorino /<udge Delorino1. "eltran moved that "ranch 1%# make a 4udicial determination of probable cause against him.- "efore the motion could be resolved, <udge Delorino recused herself from the case which was re-raffled to "ranch 1'& under <udge ;ncarnacion <a4a)oya /<udge )oya1. An its 6rder dated %1 )ay ==&, "ranch 1'& sustained the finding of probable cause against "eltran.( "eltran sought reconsideration but <udge )oya also inhibited herself from the case without resolving "eltranPs motion. <udge ;lmo ). .lameda of "ranch 10=, to whom the case was re-raffled, issued an 6rder on ( .ugust ==& denying "eltranPs motion. 5ence, the petition in +.!. $o. 1#0=1% to set aside the 6rders dated %1 )ay ==& and ( .ugust ==& and to en4oin "eltranPs prosecution. An his Comment to the petition, the ,olicitor +eneral claims that "eltranPs in>uest for !ebellion was valid and that the !TC )akati correctly found probable cause to try "eltran for such felony. +.!. $os. 1# =#=-# and 1# =#'-#& /The )a@a and 8adlad 3etitions1 "ased on Tanigue and )endo@aPs letters, the D6< sent subpoenas to petitioners on & )arch ==& re>uiring them to appear at the D6< 6ffice on 1% )arch ==& *to get copies of the complaint and its attachment.* 3rior to their receipt of the subpoenas, petitioners had >uartered themselves inside the 5ouse of !epresentatives building for fear of being sub4ected to warrantless arrest. During the preliminary investigation on 1% )arch ==&, the counsel for the CAD+ presented a masked man, later identified as <aime Fuentes /Fuentes1, who claimed to be an eyewitness against petitioners. Fuentes subscribed to his affidavit before respondent prosecutor ;mmanuel Belasco who then gave copies of the affidavit to media members present during the proceedings. The panel of prosecutors 1= gave petitioners 1= days within which to file their counter-affidavits. 3etitioners were furnished the complete copies of documents supporting the CAD+Ps letters only on 1# )arch ==&. 3etitioners moved for the inhibition of the members of the prosecution panel for lack of impartiality and independence, considering the political milieu under which petitioners were investigated, the statements that the 3resident and the ,ecretary of <ustice made to the media regarding petitionersP case, 11 and the manner in which the prosecution panel conducted the preliminary investigation. The D6< panel of prosecutors denied petitionersP motion on )arch ==&. 3etitioners sought reconsideration and additionally prayed for the dismissal of the cases. 5owever, the panel of prosecutors denied petitionersP motions on ' .pril ==&. 3etitioners now seek the nullification of the D6< 6rders of .pril ==&. )arch ==& and '

.cting on petitionersP prayer for the issuance of an in4unctive writ, the Court issued a status >uo order on 0 <une ==&. 3rior to this, however, the panel of prosecutors, on 1 .pril ==&, issued a !esolution finding probable cause to charge petitioners and '& others with !ebellion. The prosecutors filed the corresponding Anformation with "ranch 0# of the !TC )akati, docketed as Criminal Case $o. =&-('' /later consolidated with Criminal Case $o. =&-'0 in "ranch 1'&1, charging petitioners and their co-accused as *principals, masterminds, ForG heads* of a !ebellion.1 Conse>uently, the petitioners in +.!. $os. 1# =#=-# filed a supplemental petition to en4oin the prosecution of Criminal Case $o. =&-(''. An his separate Comment to the )a@a petition, the ,olicitor +eneral submits that the preliminary investigation of petitioners was not tainted with irregularities. The ,olicitor +eneral also claims that the filing of Criminal Case $o. =&-('' has mooted the )a@a petition. The Assues The petitions raise the following issues2 1. An +.!. $o. 1#0=1%, /a1 whether the in>uest proceeding against "eltran for !ebellion was valid and /b1 whether there is probable cause to indict "eltran for !ebellion? and . An +.!. $os. 1# =#=-# and 1# =#'-#&, whether respondent prosecutors should be en4oined from continuing with the prosecution of Criminal Case $o. =&-(''.1% The !uling of the Court 9e find the petitions meritorious. 6n the "eltran 3etition The An>uest 3roceeding against "eltran for !ebellion is Boid. An>uest proceedings are proper only when the accused has been lawfully arrested without warrant.1' ,ection 0, !ule 11% of the !evised !ules of Criminal 3rocedure provides the instances when such warrantless arrest may be effected, thus2 !rrest without warrant3 when lawful.C . peace officer or a private person may, without a warrant, arrest a person2 /a1 9hen, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense? /b1 9hen an offense has 4ust been committed and he has probable cause to believe based on personal knowledge of facts or circumstances that the person to be arrested has committed it? and EEEE An cases falling under paragraphs /a1 and /b1 above, the person arrested without a warrant shall be forthwith delivered to the nearest police station or 4ail and shall be proceeded against in accordance with section # of !ule 11 .

The 4oint affidavit of "eltranPs arresting officers 10 states that the officers arrested "eltran, without a warrant,1& for Anciting to ,edition, and not for !ebellion. Thus, the in>uest prosecutor could only have conducted J as he did conduct J an in>uest for Anciting to ,edition and no other. Conse>uently, when another group of prosecutors sub4ected "eltran to a second in>uest proceeding for !ebellion, they overstepped their authority rendering the second in>uest void. $one of "eltranPs arresting officers saw "eltran commit, in their presence, the crime of !ebellion. $or did they have personal knowledge of facts and circumstances that "eltran had 4ust committed !ebellion, sufficient to form probable cause to believe that he had committed !ebellion. 9hat these arresting officers alleged in their affidavit is that they saw and heard "eltran make an allegedly seditious speech on ' February ==&.1# Andeed, under D6< Circular $o. &1, dated 1 ,eptember 1((%, the initial duty of the in>uest officer is to determine if the arrest of the detained person was made *in accordance with the provisions of paragraphs /a1 and /b1 of ,ection 0, !ule 11%.* 1- Af the arrest was not properly effected, the in>uest officer should proceed under ,ection ( of Circular $o. &1 which provides2 9here .rrest $ot 3roperly ;ffected.Y ,hould the An>uest 6fficer find that the arrest was not made in accordance with the !ules, he shall2 a1 recommend the release of the person arrested or detained? b1 note down the disposition on the referral document? c1 prepare a brief memorandum indicating the reasons for the action taken? and d1 forward the same, together with the record of the case, to the City or 3rovincial 3rosecutor for appropriate action. 9here the recommendation for the release of the detained person is approved by the City or 3rovincial 3rosecutor but the evidence on hand warrant the conduct of a regular preliminary investigation, the order of release shall be served on the officer having custody of said detainee and shall direct the said officer to serve upon the detainee the subpoena or notice of preliminary investigation, together with the copies of the charge sheet or complaint, affidavit or sworn statements of the complainant and his witnesses and other supporting evidence. /;mphasis supplied1 For the failure of "eltranPs panel of in>uest prosecutors to comply with ,ection #, !ule 11 in relation to ,ection 0, !ule 11% and D6< Circular $o. &1, we declare "eltranPs in>uest void.1( "eltran would have been entitled to a preliminary investigation had he not asked the trial court to make a 4udicial determination of probable cause, which effectively took the place of such proceeding. There is $o 3robable Cause to Andict "eltran for !ebellion. 3robable cause is the *eEistence of such facts and circumstances as would eEcite the belief in a reasonable mind, acting on the facts within the knowledge of the

prosecutor, that the person charged was guilty of the crime for which he was prosecuted.* = To accord respect to the discretion granted to the prosecutor and for reasons of practicality, this Court, as a rule, does not interfere with the prosecutorPs determination of probable cause for otherwise, courts would be swamped with petitions to review the prosecutorPs findings in such investigations. 15owever, in the few eEceptional cases where the prosecutor abused his discretion by ignoring a clear insufficiency of evidence to support a finding of probable cause, thus denying the accused his right to substantive and procedural due process, we have not hesitated to intervene and eEercise our review power under !ule &0 to overturn the prosecutorPs findings. This eEception holds true here. !ebellion under .rticle 1%' of the !evised 3enal Code is committed J F"Gy rising publicly and taking arms against the +overnment for the purpose of removing from the allegiance to said +overnment or its laws, the territory of the !epublic of the 3hilippines or any part thereof, or any body of land, naval, or other armed forces or depriving the Chief ;Eecutive or the 8egislature, wholly or partially, of any of their powers or prerogatives. The elements of the offense are2 1. That there be a /a1 public uprising and /b1 taking arms against the +overnment? and . That the purpose of the uprising or movement is either J /a1 to remove from the allegiance to said +overnment or its laws2 /11 the territory of the 3hilippines or any part thereof? or / 1 any body of land, naval, or other armed forces? or /b1 to deprive the Chief ;Eecutive or Congress, wholly or partially, of any of their powers and prerogatives. % Thus, by its nature, rebellion is a crime of the masses or multitudes involving crowd action done in furtherance of a political end. ' The evidence before the panel of prosecutors who conducted the in>uest of "eltran for !ebellion consisted of the affidavits and other documents 0 attached to the CAD+ letters. 9e have gone over these documents and find merit in "eltranPs contention that the same are insufficient to show probable cause to indict him for !ebellion. The bulk of the documents consists of affidavits, some of which were sworn before a notary public, eEecuted by members of the military and some civilians. ;Ecept for two affidavits, eEecuted by a certain !uel ;scala /;scala1, dated = Febuary ==&, & and !aul Cachuela /Cachuela1, dated % February ==&, # none of the affidavits mentions "eltran. - An his affidavit, ;scala recounted that in the afternoon of = February ==&, he saw "eltran, 6campo, CasiZo, )a@a, )ariano, Birador, and other individuals on board a vehicle which entered a chicken farm in "ucal, 3adre +arcia, "atangas and that after the passengers alighted, they were met by another individual who looked like ,an <uan. For his part, Cachuela stated that he was a

former member of the C33 and that /11 he attended the C33Ps *1= th 3lenum* in 1(( where he saw "eltran? / 1 he took part in criminal activities? and /%1 the arms he and the other C33 members used were purchased partly from contributions by Congressional members, like "eltran, who represent party-list groups affiliated with the C33. The allegations in these affidavits are far from the proof needed to indict "eltran for taking part in an armed public uprising against the government. 9hat these documents prove, at best, is that "eltran was in "ucal, 3adre +arcia, "atangas on = February ==& and that 1' years earlier, he was present during the 1(( C33 3lenum. $one of the affidavits stated that "eltran committed specific acts of promoting, maintaining, or heading a rebellion as found in the D6< !esolution of # February ==&. $one of the affidavits alleged that "eltran is a leader of a rebellion. "eltranPs alleged presence during the 1(( C33 3lenum does not automatically make him a leader of a rebellion. An fact, CachuelaPs affidavit stated that "eltran attended the 1(( C33 3lenum as *Chairman, Milusang )ayo :no /M):1.* .ssuming that "eltran is a member of the C33, which "eltran does not acknowledge, mere membership in the C33 does not constitute rebellion. ( .s for the alleged funding of the C33Ps military e>uipment from "eltranPs congressional funds, CachuelaPs affidavit merely contained a general conclusion without any specific act showing such funding. Cachuela merely alleged that *ang mga ibang mga pondo namin ay galing sa mga party list na naihalal sa Mongreso tulad ng ".7.$ ):$. J pimumunuan nila ,.T:! 6C.)36 at C!A,3A$ ";8T!.$, E E E.*%=,uch a general conclusion does not establish probable cause. An his Comment to "eltranPs petition, the ,olicitor +eneral points to FuentesP affidavit, dated 0 February ==&,%1as basis for the finding of probable cause against "eltran as Fuentes provided details in his statement regarding meetings "eltran and the other petitioners attended in ==0 and ==& in which plans to overthrow violently the .rroyo government were allegedly discussed, among others. The claim is untenable. FuentesP affidavit was not part of the attachments the CAD+ referred to the D6< on # February ==&. Thus, the panel of in>uest prosecutors did not have FuentesP affidavit in their possession when they conducted the !ebellion in>uest against "eltran on that day. Andeed, although this affidavit is dated 0 February ==&, the CAD+ first presented it only during the preliminary investigation of the other petitioners on 1% )arch ==& during which Fuentes subscribed to his statement before respondent prosecutor Belasco. !espondent prosecutors later tried to remedy this fatal defect by motu proprio submitting to "ranch 1%# of the !TC )akati FuentesP affidavit as part of their Comment to "eltranPs motion for 4udicial determination of probable cause. ,uch belated submission, a tacit admission of the dearth of evidence against "eltran during the in>uest, does not improve the prosecutionPs case. .ssuming them to be true, what the allegations in FuentesP affidavit make out is a case for Conspiracy to Commit !ebellion, punishable under .rticle 1%& of the !evised 3enal Code, not !ebellion

under .rticle 1%'. .ttendance in meetings to discuss, among others, plans to bring down a government is a mere preparatory step to commit the acts constituting !ebellion under .rticle 1%'. ;ven the prosecution acknowledged this, since the felony charged in the Anformation against "eltran and ,an <uan in Criminal Case $o. =&-'0 is Conspiracy to Commit !ebellion and not !ebellion. The Anformation merely alleged that "eltran, ,an <uan, and others conspired to form a *tactical alliance* to commit !ebellion. Thus, the !TC )akati erred when it nevertheless found probable cause to try "eltran for !ebellion based on the evidence before it. The minutes% of the = February ==& alleged meeting in "atangas between members of )M3 and C33, including "eltran, also do not detract from our finding.&aDEFphi&.net $owhere in the minutes was "eltran implicated. 9hile the minutes state that a certain *Cris* attended the alleged meeting, there is no other evidence on record indicating that *Cris* is "eltran. ,an <uan, from whom the *flash drive* containing the so-called minutes was allegedly taken, denies knowing "eltran. To repeat, none of the affidavits alleges that "eltran is promoting, maintaining, or heading a !ebellion. The Anformation in Criminal Case $o. =&-'0 itself does not make such allegation. Thus, even assuming that the Anformation validly charges "eltran for taking part in a !ebellion, he is entitled to bail as a matter of right since there is no allegation in the Anformation that he is a leader or promoter of the !ebellion.%% 5owever, the Anformation in fact merely charges "eltran for *conspiring and confederating* with others in forming a *tactical alliance* to commit rebellion. .s worded, the Anformation does not charge "eltran with !ebellion but with Conspiracy to Commit !ebellion, a bailable offense.%' 6n the 8adlad and )a@a 3etitions The 3reliminary Anvestigation was Tainted 9ith Arregularities. .s in the determination of probable cause, this Court is similarly loath to en4oin the prosecution of offenses, a practice rooted on public interest as the speedy closure of criminal investigations fosters public safety. %0 5owever, such relief in e>uity may be granted if, among others, the same is necessary /a1 to prevent the use of the strong arm of the law in an oppressive and vindictive manner %& or /b1 to afford ade>uate protection to constitutional rights.%# The case of the petitioners in +.!. $os. 1# =#=# and 1# =#'-#& falls under these eEceptions. The procedure for preliminary investigation of offenses punishable by at least four years, two months and one day is outlined in ,ection %, !ule 11 of the !evised !ules of Criminal 3rocedure, thus2 Procedure.YThe preliminary investigation shall be conducted in the following manner2 /a1 The complaint shall state the address of the respondent and shall be accompanied by the affidavits of the complainant and his witnesses, as well as other supporting documents to establish probable cause. They shall be in

such number of copies as there are respondents, plus two / 1 copies for the official file. The affidavits shall be subscribed and sworn to before any prosecutor or government official authori@ed to administer oath, or, in their absence or unavailability, before a notary public, each of whom must certify that he personally eEamined the affiants and that he is satisfied that they voluntarily eEecuted and understood their affidavits. /b1 9ithin ten /1=1 days after the filing of the complaint, the investigating officer shall either dismiss it if he finds no ground to continue with the investigation, or issue a subpoena to the respondent attaching to it a copy of the complaint and its supporting affidavits and documents. The respondent shall have the right to eEamine the evidence submitted by the complainant which he may not have been furnished and to copy them at his eEpense. Af the evidence is voluminous, the complainant may be re>uired to specify those which he intends to present against the respondent, and these shall be made available for eEamination or copying by the respondent at his eEpense. 6b4ects as evidence need not be furnished a party but shall be made available for eEamination, copying, or photographing at the eEpense of the re>uesting party. /c1 9ithin ten /1=1 days from receipt of the subpoena with the complaint and supporting affidavits and documents, the respondent shall submit his counter-affidavit and that of his witnesses and other supporting documents relied upon for his defense. The counter-affidavits shall be subscribed and sworn to and certified as provided in paragraph /a1 of this section, with copies thereof furnished by him to the complainant. The respondent shall not be allowed to file a motion to dismiss in lieu of a counter-affidavit. /d1 Af the respondent cannot be subpoenaed, or if subpoenaed, does not submit counter-affidavits within the ten /1=1 day period, the investigating officer shall resolve the complaint based on the evidence presented by the complainant. /e1 The investigating officer may set a hearing if there are facts and issues to be clarified from a party or a witness. The parties can be present at the hearing but without the right to eEamine or cross-eEamine. They may, however, submit to the investigating officer >uestions which may be asked to the party or witness concerned. The hearing shall be held within ten /1=1 days from submission of the counter-affidavits and other documents or from the eEpiration of the period for their submission. At shall be terminated within five /01 days. /f1 9ithin ten /1=1 days after the investigation, the investigating officer shall determine whether or not there is sufficient ground to hold the respondent for trial. /;mphasis supplied1

Anstead of following this procedure scrupulously, as what this Court had mandated in an earlier ruling, *so that the constitutional right to liberty of a potential accused can be protected from any material damage,* %- respondent prosecutors nonchalantly disregarded it. !espondent prosecutors failed to comply with ,ection %/a1 of !ule 11 which provides that the complaint /which, with its attachment, must be of such number as there are respondents1 be accompanied by the affidavits of the complainant and his witnesses, subscribed and sworn to before any prosecutor or government official authori@ed to administer oath, or, in their absence or unavailability, before a notary public. !espondent prosecutors treated the unsubscribed letters of Tanigue and )endo@a of the CAD+, 3$3 as complaints %( and accepted the affidavits attached to the letters even though some of them were notari@ed by a notary public without any showing that a prosecutor or >ualified government official was unavailable as re>uired by ,ection %/a1 of !ule 11 . Further, ,ection %/b1 of !ule 11 mandates that the prosecutor, after receiving the complaint, must determine if there are grounds to continue with the investigation. Af there is none, he shall dismiss the case, otherwise he shall *issue a subpoena to the respondents.* 5ere, after receiving the CAD+ letters, respondent prosecutors peremptorily issued subpoenas to petitioners re>uiring them to appear at the D6< office on 1% )arch ==& *to secure copies of the complaints and its attachments.* During the investigation, respondent prosecutors allowed the CAD+ to present a masked Fuentes who subscribed to an affidavit before respondent prosecutor Belasco. Belasco proceeded to distribute copies of FuentesP affidavit not to petitioners or their counsels but to members of the media who covered the proceedings. !espondent prosecutors then re>uired petitioners to submit their counter-affidavits in 1= days. At was only four days later, on 1# )arch ==&, that petitioners received the complete copy of the attachments to the CAD+ letters.&aDEFphi&.net These uncontroverted facts belie respondent prosecutorsP statement in the 6rder of )arch ==& that the preliminary investigation *was done in accordance with the !evised !ules oFfG Criminal 3rocedure.* '= Andeed, by peremptorily issuing the subpoenas to petitioners, tolerating the complainantPs antics during the investigation, and distributing copies of a witnessP affidavit to members of the media knowing that petitioners have not had the opportunity to eEamine the charges against them, respondent prosecutors not only triviali@ed the investigation but also lent credence to petitionersP claim that the entire proceeding was a sham. . preliminary investigation is the crucial sieve in the criminal 4ustice system which spells for an individual the difference between months if not years of agoni@ing trial and possibly 4ail term, on the one hand, and peace of mind and liberty, on the other hand. Thus, we have characteri@ed the right to a preliminary investigation as not *a mere formal or technical right* but a *substantive* one, forming part of due process in criminal 4ustice.'1 This especially holds true here where the offense charged is punishable by reclusion perpetua and may be non-bailable for those accused as principals.

Contrary to the submission of the ,olicitor +eneral, respondent prosecutorsP filing of the Anformation against petitioners on 1 .pril ==& with "ranch 0# of the !TC )akati does not moot the petitions in +.!. $os. 1# =#=-# and 1# =#'-#&. 6ur power to en4oin prosecutions cannot be frustrated by the simple filing of the Anformation with the trial court.&aDEFphi&.net 6n !espondent 3rosecutorsP 8ack of Ampartiality 9e find merit in petitionersP doubt on respondent prosecutorsP impartiality. !espondent ,ecretary of <ustice, who eEercises supervision and control over the panel of prosecutors, stated in an interview on 1% )arch ==&, the day of the preliminary investigation, that, *9e Fthe D6<G will 4ust declare probable cause, then itPs up to the FCGourt to decide E E E.* ' 3etitioners raised this issue in their petition,'% but respondents never disputed the veracity of this statement. This clearly shows pre-4udgment, a determination to file the Anformation even in the absence of probable cause. . Final 9ord The obvious involvement of political considerations in the actuations of respondent ,ecretary of <ustice and respondent prosecutors brings to mind an observation we made in another e>ually politically charged case. 9e reiterate what we stated then, if only to emphasi@e the importance of maintaining the integrity of criminal prosecutions in general and preliminary investigations in particular, thus2 F9Ge cannot emphasi@e too strongly that prosecutors should not allow, and should avoid, giving the impression that their noble office is being used or prostituted, wittingly or unwittingly, for political ends, or other purposes alien to, or subversive of, the basic and fundamental ob4ective of observing the interest of 4ustice evenhandedly, without fear or favor to any and all litigants alike, whether rich or poor, weak or strong, powerless or mighty. 6nly by strict adherence to the established procedure may be publicPs perception of the impartiality of the prosecutor be enhanced.'' &aDEFphi&.net 95;!;F6!;, we +!.$T the petitions. An +.!. $o. 1#0=1%, we ,;T .,AD; the 6rder dated %1 )ay ==& of the !egional Trial Court, )akati City, "ranch 1'& and the 6rder dated ( .ugust ==& of the !egional Trial Court, )akati City, "ranch 10=. An +.!. $os. 1# =#=-# and 1# =#'-#&, we ,;T .,AD; the 6rders dated )arch ==& and ' .pril ==& issued by respondent prosecutors. 9e 6!D;! the !egional Trial Court, )akati City, "ranch 10= to DA,)A,, Criminal Case $os. =&'0 and =&-(''. ,6 6!D;!;D.

RO*OLFO SORIA a"# E*IMAR !ISTA, petitioners, vs. HON. ANIANO *ESIERTO 2" 123 7a<a724y a3 Hea# o= 41e O==27e o= 41e O8bu#38a", HON. ORLAN*O +. +ASIMIRO 2" 123 7a<a724y a3 *e<u4y O8bu#38a" =or M2924ary, POINS. /EFFRE% T. GOROSPE, SPO2 ROLAN*O G. REGA+HO, SPO1 ALFRE*O !. AL)IAR, /R., PO3 /AIME *. LANARO, PO2 FLORANTE !. +AR*ENAS, PO1 /OSEPH A. !ENANA, SPO1 FRANLLIN *. +A!A%A a"# SPOB PE*RO PAREL, respondents. *E+ISION +HI+O&NANARIO, J.' 7et again, we are tasked to substitute our 4udgment for that of the 6ffice of the 6mbudsman in its finding of lack of probable cause made during preliminary investigation. .nd, yet again, we reaffirm the time-honored practice of noninterference in the conduct of preliminary investigations by our prosecutory bodies absent a showing of grave abuse of discretion on their part.

3etitioners, thru a special civil action for certiorari,F1G contend precisely that the public respondents herein J officers of the 6ffice of the 6mbudsman J gravely abused their discretion in dismissing the complaint for violation of .rticle 1 0 of the !evised 3enal Code /Delay in the delivery of detained persons1 against private respondents herein, members of the 3hilippine $ational 3olice stationed at the )unicipality of ,anta, Alocos ,ur. From the respective pleadings F G of the parties, the following facts appear to be indubitable2 1. 6n or about M'30 2" 41e e;e"2"6 o= 13 May 2001 /a ,unday and the day before the 1' )ay ==1 ;lectionsF%G1, petitioners were arrested without a warrant by respondents police officers for alleged illegal possession of firearms and ammunition? . 3etitioner ,oria was arrested for alleged illegal possession of .%- cal. revolver /a crime which carries with it the penalty of prision correccional in its maEimum period1 and for violation of .rticle &1 par. /f1 of the 6mnibus ;lection Code in relation to the Commission on ;lection !esolution $o. %% - /which carries the penalty of imprisonment of not less than one F1G year but not more than siE F&G years1? %. 3etitioner "ista was arrested for alleged illegal possession of sub-machine pistol :CA, cal. (mm and a . cal. revolver with ammunition? '. Ammediately after their arrest, petitioners were detained at the ,anta, Alocos ,ur, 3olice ,tation. At was at the ,anta 3olice ,tation that petitioner "ista was identified by one of the police officers to have a standing warrant of arrest for violation of "atas 3ambansa "lg. & issued by the )unicipal Trial Court /)TC1 of Bigan, Alocos ,ur, docketed as Criminal Case $o. 1 # ? 0. T1e "e54 #ay, a4 abou4 B'30 <.8. o= 1B May 2001 /)onday and election day1, petitioners were brought to the residence of 3rovincial 3rosecutor <essica Biloria in ,an <uan, Alocos ,ur, before whom a R<oint-.ffidavitS against them was subscribed and sworn to by the arresting officers. From there, the arresting officers brought the petitioners to the 3rovincial 3rosecutorPs 6ffice in Bigan, Alocos ,ur, and there at about &2== p.m. the R<oint-.ffidavitS was filed and docketed? &. A4 abou4 H'30 2" 41e e;e"2"6 o= 41e 3a8e #ay, 1B May 2001, <e4242o"er Sor2a :a3 re9ea3e# upon the order of 3rosecutor Biloria to undergo the re>uisite preliminary investigation, while petitioner "ista was brought back and continued to be detained at the ,anta 3olice ,tation. From the time of petitioner ,oriaPs detention up to the time of his release, 4:e"4y&4:o C22D 1our3 1a# a9rea#y e9a<3e#E #. 6n 10 )ay ==1, at around 2== in the afternoon, petitioner "ista was brought before the )TC of Bigan, Alocos ,ur, where the case for violation of "atas 3ambansa "lg. & was pending. 3etitioner "ista posted bail and an 6rder of Temporary !elease was issued thereafter?

-. .t this point in time, no order of release was issued in connection with petitioner "istaPs arrest for alleged illegal possession of firearms. A4 B'30 2" 41e a=4er"oo" o= 41e 3a8e #ay C1. May 2001D , an information for Allegal 3ossession of Firearms and .mmunition, docketed as Criminal Case $o. ''1%-,, was filed against petitioner "ista with the 'th )unicipal Circuit Trial Court of $arvacan, Alocos ,ur. .t 02== in the afternoon, informations for Allegal 3ossession of Firearms and .mmunition and violation of .rticle &1 par. /f1 of the 6mnibus ;lection Code in relation to C6);8;C !esolution $o. %% -, docketed as Criminal Cases $o. &($ and $o. &--$, respectively, were filed in the !egional Trial Court at $arvacan, Alocos ,ur? (. O" 0M /u"e 2001, petitioner "ista was released upon filing of bail bonds in Criminal Cases $o. &--$ and $o. ''1%-,. He :a3 #e4a2"e# =or 2H #ay3. 1=. 6n 10 .ugust ==1, petitioners filed with the 6ffice of the 6mbudsman for )ilitary .ffairs a complaint-affidavit for violation of .rt. 1 0 of the !evised 3enal Code against herein private respondents. 11. .fter considering the partiesP respective submissions, the 6ffice of the 6mbudsman rendered the first assailed <oint !esolution dated %1 <anuary == dismissing the complaint for violation of .rt. 1 0 of the !evised 3enal Code for lack of merit? and 1 . 6n =' )arch == , petitioners then filed their motion for reconsideration which was denied for lack of merit in the second assailed !esolution dated 0 )arch == . .rticle 1 0 of the !evised 3enal Code states2 .rt. 1 0. Delay in the delivery of detained persons to the proper 4udicial authorities. - The penalties provided in the neEt preceding article shall be imposed upon the public officer or employee who shall detain any person for some legal ground and shall fail to deliver such person to the proper 4udicial authorities within the period of2 twelve /1 1 hours, for crimes or offenses punishable by light penalties, or their e>uivalent? eighteen /1-1 hours, for crimes or offenses punishable by correctional penalties, or their e>uivalent? and thirty-siE /%&1 hours, for crimes or offenses punishable by afflictive or capital penalties, or their e>uivalent. An every case, the person detained shall be informed of the cause of his detention and shall be allowed, upon his re>uest, to communicate and confer at any time with his attorney or counsel. At is not under dispute that the alleged crimes for which petitioner ,oria was arrested without warrant are punishable by correctional penalties or their e>uivalent, thus, criminal complaints or information should be filed with the proper 4udicial authorities within 1- hours of his arrest. $either is it in dispute that the alleged crimes for which petitioner "ista was arrested are punishable by afflictive or capital penalties, or their e>uivalent, thus, he could only be detained for %& hours without

criminal complaints or information having been filed with the proper 4udicial authorities. The sole bone of contention revolves around the proper application of the 1 1--%& periods. 9ith respect specifically to the detention of petitioner ,oria which lasted for hours, it is alleged that public respondents gravely erred in construing .rticle 1 0F'G as eEcluding ,undays, holidays and election days in the computation of the periods prescribed within which public officers should deliver arrested persons to the proper 4udicial authorities as the law never makes such eEception. ,tatutory construction has it that if a statute is clear and une>uivocal, it must be given its literal meaning and applied without any attempts at interpretation. F0G 3ublic respondents, on the other hand, relied on the cases of #edina v. @ro,co, <r.,F&G and Sa.o v. Chief of Police of #anilaF#G and on commentariesF-G of 4urists to bolster their position that ,undays, holidays and election days are eEcluded in the computation of the periods provided in .rticle 1 0,F(G hence, the arresting officers delivered petitioners well within the allowable time. An addition to the foregoing arguments and with respect specifically to petitioner "ista, petitioners maintain that the filing of the information in court against petitioner "ista did not 4ustify his continuous detention. The information was filed at B'30 <.8. o= 1. May 2001 but the orders for his release were issued by the !egional Trial Court and )unicipal Trial Court of $arvacan, Alocos ,ur, only on 0M /u"e 2001. They argued that based on law and 4urisprudence, if no charge is filed by the prosecutor within the period fiEed by law, the arresting officer must release the detainee lest he be charged with violation of .rticle 1 0. F1=G 3ublic respondents countered that the duty of the arresting officers ended upon the filing of the informations with the proper 4udicial authorities following the rulings in !gba. v. eput. @"buds"an for the #ilitar.,F11G and People v. !costa.F1 G From a study of the opposing views advanced by the parties, it is evident that public respondents did not abuse their discretion in dismissing for lack of probable cause the complaint against private respondents. +rave abuse of discretion is such capricious and whimsical eEercise of 4udgment on the part of the public officer concerned which is e>uivalent to an eEcess or lack of 4urisdiction. The abuse of discretion must be so patent and gross as to amount to an evasion of a positive duty or a virtual refusal to perform a duty en4oined by law, or to act at all in contemplation of law as where the power is eEercised in an arbitrary and despotic manner by reason of passion or hostility. F1%G $o grave abuse of discretion, as defined, can be attributed to herein public respondents. Their disposition of petitionersP complaint for violation of .rticle 1 0 of the !evised 3enal Code cannot be said to have been con4ured out of thin air as it was properly backed up by law and 4urisprudence. 3ublic respondents ratiocinated thus2 .s aptly pointed out by the respondents insofar as the complaint of !odolfo ,oria is concerned, based on applicable laws and 4urisprudence, an election day or a special holiday, should not be included in the computation of the period prescribed by law

for the filing of complaintNinformation in courts in cases of warrantless arrests, it being a Rno-office day.S /)edina vs. 6rosco, 1 0 3hil. %1%.1 An the instant case, while it appears that the complaints against ,oria for Allegal 3ossession of Firearm and Biolation of C6);8;C !esolution $o. %% - were filed with the !egional Trial Court and )unicipal Trial Court of $arvacan, Alocos ,ur, only on )ay 10, ==F1G at '2%= p.m., he had already been released the day before or on )ay 1', ==1 at about &2%= p.m. by the respondents, as directed by 3rov. 3rosecutor <essica FBiloriaG. 5ence, there could be no arbitrary detention or violation of .rticle 1 0 of the !evised 3enal Code to speak of.F1'G Andeed, we did hold in #edina v. @ro,co, <r.,F10G that Y . . . The arresting officerPs duty under the law was either to deliver him to the proper 4udicial authorities within 1- hours, or thereafter release him. The fact however is that he was not released. From the time of petitionerPs arrest at 1 2== oPclock p.m. on $ovember # to %2'= p.m. on $ovember 1= when the information against him for murder actually was in court, over #0 hours have elapsed. "ut, stock should be taken of the fact that $ovember # was a ,unday? $ovember was declared an official holiday? and $ovember ( /election day1 was also an official holiday. An these three no-office days, it was not an easy matter for a fiscal to look for his clerk and stenographer, draft the information and search for the <udge to have him act thereon, and get the clerk of court to open the courthouse, docket the case and have the order of commitment prepared. .nd then, where to locate and the uncertainty of locating those officers and employees could very well compound the fiscalPs difficulties. These are considerations sufficient enough to deter us from declaring that .rthur )edina was arbitrarily detained. For, he was brought to court on the very first office day following arrest. .nd, in Sa.o v. Chief of Police of #anilaF1&G -. . . 6f course, for the purpose of determining the criminal liability of an officer detaining a person for more than siE hours prescribed by the !evised 3enal Code, the means of communication as well as the hour of arrest and other circumstances, such as the time of surrender and the material possibility for the fiscal to make the investigation and file in time the necessary information, must be taken into consideration. .s to the issue concerning the duty of the arresting officer after the information has already been filed in Court, public respondents acted well within their discretion in ruling thus2 An the same vein, the complaint of ;dimar "ista against the respondents for Biolation of .rticle 1 0, will not prosper because the running of the thirty-siE /%&1-hour period prescribed by law for the filing of the complaint against him from the time of his arrest was tolled by one day /election day1. )oreover, he has a standing warrant of arrest for Biolation of ".3. "lg. & and it was only on )ay 10, ==1, at about 2== p.m. that he was able to post bail and secure an 6rder of !elease. 6bviously,

however, he could only be released if he has no other pending criminal case re>uiring his continuous detention. The criminal Anformations against "ista for Biolations of .rticle 1 0, !3C and C6);8;C !esolution $o. %% - were filed with the !egional Trial Court and )unicipal Trial Court of $arvacan, Alocos ,ur, on )ay 10, ==1 /.nneEes R+S and RAS, Complaint-.ffidavit of ;dimar "ista1 but he was released from detention only on <une -, ==1, on orders of the !TC and )TC of $arvacan, Alocos ,ur /.nneEes R<S and RMS, Complaint-.ffidavit1. 9as there a delay in the delivery of detained person to the proper 4udicial authorities under the circumstancesK The answer is in the negative. The complaints against him was /sic1 seasonably filed in the court of 4ustice within the thirty-siE /%&1-hour period prescribed by law as discussed above. The duty of the detaining officers is deemed complied with upon the filing of the complaints. Further action, like issuance of a !elease 6rder, then rests upon the 4udicial authority /3eople v. .costa FC.G 0' 6.+. '#%(1.F1#G The above disposition is in keeping with !gba. v. #ilitar.,F1-G wherein we ordained that J eput. @"buds"an for the

with regard to complaints filed before it. An much the same way, the courts will be swamped with cases if they will have to review the eEercise of discretion on the part of fiscals or prosecuting attorneys each time the latter decide to file an information in court or dismiss a complaint by a private complainant.F1(G /;mphasis supplied1 (HEREFORE, premises considered, the petition dated # )ay == is hereby DA,)A,,;D for lack of merit. The <oint !esolution dated %1 <anuary == and the 6rder dated 0 )arch == of the 6ffice of the 6mbudsman are hereby .FFA!);D. $o costs. SO OR*ERE*. Puno, (Chair"an), !ustria8#artine,, Calle1o, Sr., and /inga, <<., concur.

. . . Furthermore, upon the filing of the complaint with the )unicipal Trial Court, the intent behind .rt. 1 0 is satisfied considering that by such act, the detained person is informed of the crime imputed against him and, upon his application with the court, he may be released on bail. 3etitioner himself acknowledged this power of the )CTC to order his release when he applied for and was granted his release upon posting bail. Thus, the very purpose underlying .rticle 1 0 has been duly served with the filing of the complaint with the )CTC. 9e agree with the position of the 6mbudsman that such filing of the complaint with the )CTC interrupted the period prescribed in said .rticle. .ll things considered, there being no grave abuse of discretion, we have no choice but to defer to the 6ffice of the 6mbudsmanPs determination that the facts on hand do not make out a case for violation of .rticle 1 0 of the !evised 3enal Code. .s we have underscored in numerous decisions -9e have consistently refrained from interfering with the investigatory and prosecutorial powers of the 6mbudsman absent any compelling reason. This policy is based on constitutional, statutory and practical considerations. 9e are mindful that the Constitution and !. &##= endowed the 6ffice of the 6mbudsman with a wide latitude of investigatory and prosecutorial powers, virtually free from legislative, eEecutive or 4udicial intervention, in order to insulate it from outside pressure and improper influence. )oreover, a preliminary investigation is in effect a realistic 4udicial appraisal of the merits of the case. ,ufficient proof of the guilt of the accused must be adduced so that when the case is tried, the trial court may not be bound, as a matter of law, to order an ac>uittal. He"7e, 2= 41e O8bu#38a", u32"6 <ro=e332o"a9 >u#68e"4, =2"#3 41e 7a3e #2382332b9e, 41e +our4 31a99 re3<e74 3u71 =2"#2"63, u"9e33 79o41e# :241 6ra;e abu3e o= #237re42o" . 6therwise, the functions of the courts will be grievously hampered by innumerable petitions assailing the dismissal of investigatory proceedings conducted by the 6ffice of the 6mbudsman