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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR


QuAMTO (1987-2010)

UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE



QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE
BAR

QuAMTO (1987-2010)

Criminal Law





ACADEMICS COMMITTEE

ALJON D. DE GUZMAN CHAIRPERSON
MARK KEVIN U. DELLOSA VICE-CHAIR FOR ACADEMICS
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JAMES BRYAN V. ESTELEYDES VICE-CHAIR FOR RESEARCH


RESEARCH COMMITTEE

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ROBBIE BAAGA MEMBER
MONICA S. CAJUCOM MEMBER
DOMINIC VICTOR C. DE ALBAN MEMBER
ANNABELLA HERNANDEZ MEMBER
MA. CRISTINA MANZO-DAGUDAG MEMBER
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CHARMAINE PANLAQUE MEMBER
OMAR DELOSO MEMBER




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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
QuAMTO (1987-2010)

UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE






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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
QuAMTO (1987-2010)

UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
GENERAL PRINCIPLES

Q: What are the three cardinal features or main
characteristics of Philippine Criminal Law? (1998,
1988)

A: The three main characteristics of Philippine
criminal law are:

a. Generality or its being binding to all persons
who live or sojourn in Philippine territory subject
to certain exceptions

b. Territoriality or its having force and effect only
within Philippine territory, subject to certain
exceptions also

c. Irretrospectivity/Prospectivity or its application
only to acts and omissions committed/incurred
after the effectivity of the law except if it favors
the offender unless he is a habitual delinquent or
the law otherwise provides

Q: Hubert and Eunice were married in the
Philippines. Hubert took graduate studies in New
York and met his former girlfriend Eula. They
renewed their friendship and finally decided to get
married. The first wife, Eunice, heard about the
marriage and secures a copy of the marriage
contract in New York. Eunice filed a case of Bigamy
against Hubert in the Philippines.

1. Will the case prosper? Explain.
2. If Eunice gave her consent to the second
marriage, what will your answer be?
Explain. (2008)

A:
1. No, because Philippine courts have no
jurisdiction over a crime committed outside
of the Philippine territory. Under the
principle of territoriality, penal laws,
specifically the RPC are enforceable only
within the bounds of our territory (Art. 2,
RPC).
2. The answer would be the same. The
consent of Eunice would not confer
jurisdiction on Philippine courts. Bigamy is a
public crime and not subject to agreement
between the victim and the accused. The
legal obstacle to the institution of a case for
bigamy in the Philippines is jurisdictional
and cannot be excused or waived by the
parties affected.

Q: Distinguish between a crime mala prohibita
from a crime mala in se (2005, 2003, 2001, 1999,
1997, 1988)

A: In crimes mala prohibita, the acts are not by
nature wrong, evil or bad. They are punished only
because there is a law prohibiting them for public
good, and thus, good faith or lack of criminal intent
in doing the prohibited act is not a defense. In
crimes mala in se, the acts are by nature wrong, evil
or bad, and so generally condemned. The moral trait
of the offender is involved; thus, good faith or lack of
criminal intent on the part of the offender is a
defense, unless the crime is the result of criminal
negligence. Correspondingly, modifying
circumstances are considered in punishing the
offender.

Q: When is motive relevant to prove a case? When
is it not necessary to be established? (2006, 1999)

A: Motive is relevant to prove a case when there is
doubt as to the identity of the offender or when the
act committed gives rise to variant crimes and there
is the need to determine the proper crime to be
imputed to the offender. Proof of motive is not
required when the offender is positively identified or
has admitted the commission of the crime and when
the crime committed is a malum prohibitum or
where the crime is a product of culpa or criminal
negligence.

Q: Distinguish intent from motive (2004, 1999,
1996, 1988)

A: Intent is the purpose for using a particular means
to achieve the desired result, and is an ingredient of
dolo or malice and thus an element of deliberate
felonies whereas motive is the moving power which
impels a person to act for a definite result and is not
an element of a crime.

Q: The defense raised by an accused in a
prosecution for murder is that the corpus delicti is
not established since the body of the victim was
not recovered, is the contention correct? (2006,
2001, 2000)

A: No, the contention is incorrect. Corpus delicti
does not refer to the body of the purported victim
which had not been found. Corpus delicti literally
means the body or substance of the crime or the fact
that a crime has been committed. It is a compound
fact made up of two things: the existence of certain
act or result forming the basis of the criminal charge
and the existence of criminal agency as the cause of
the act. Even without the body of the victim, the
offender can be convicted when the facts and
circumstances of a crime is established.

Q: After due hearing on a petition for a writ of
amparo founded on the acts of enforced
disappearance and extralegal killing of the son of
the complainant allegedly done by the respondent
military officers, the court granted the petition.
May the military officers be criminally charged in
court with enforced disappearance and extralegal
killing? Explain fully. (2008)

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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
QuAMTO (1987-2010)

UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
A: No. Enforced disappearance and extralegal killing
is not per se a criminal offense although it is
wrongful. The grant of a writ of amparo only
provides for a relief; it does not establish a basis for
a crime. Unless the writ was issued because of
specific overt acts shown to have been committed
by the respondent military officers and such acts are
crimes under penal laws, no criminal charge may be
routinely filed just because the petition for the writ
was granted.

Q: Are human rights violations considered as crimes
in the Philippines? Explain. (2008)

A: Not necessarily, since there are human rights
violations which do not amount to a criminal
offense. In this country, there can be no crime when
there is no law punishing an act or omission as a
crime. However, if the acts constitute violations of
customary international law, they may be
considered violations of Philippine law (Sec. 8, Art. II,
Constitution). Also, the acts may constitute elements
of offenses penalized under Philippine laws, like
kidnapping/illegal detention.

Q: Because of the barbarity and hideousness of the
acts committed by the suspects/respondents in
cutting off their victims appendages, stuffing their
torsos, legs, body parts into oil drums and bullet-
riddled vehicles and later on burying these oil
drums, vehicles with the use of backhoes and other
earth-moving machinery, the Commission on
Human Rights (CHR) investigating team
recommended to the panel of public prosecutors
that all respondents be charged with violation of
the Heinous Crimes Law. The prosecution panel
agreed with the CHR. As the Chief Prosecutor
tasked with approving the filing of the Information,
how will you pass upon the recommendation?
Explain. (2010)

A: The CHR is correct in describing the crimes
committed as heinous crimes as defined in the
preamble of the Heinous Crimes Law (R.A. 7659),
despite the passage of R.A. 9346 prohibiting the
imposition of death penalty.

However, the Heinous Crimes Law does not define
crimes; it is only an amendatory law increasing the
penalty for the crimes specified therein as heinous,
to a maximum of death. Thus, the heinous crimes
committed shall be prosecuted under the penal law
they are respectively defined and penalized, such as
the Revised Penal Code as the case may be. The
circumstances making the crimes heinous may be
alleged as qualifying or generic aggravating, if
proper. The crime shall be designated as defined and
punished under the penal law violated and the
penalty shall be reclusion perpetua without the
benefit of parole or life imprisonment without the
benefit of parole, as the case may be, in lieu of death
penalty.
FELONIES

Q: Luis Cruz was deeply hurt when his offer of love
wsa rejected by his girlfriend Marivella one
afternoon when he visited her. When he left her
house, he walked as if he was sleepwalking so
much so that a teenage snatcher was able to grab
his cellphone and flee without being chased by Luis.
At the next LRT station, he boarded one of the
coachers bound for Baclaran. While seated, he
happened to read a newspaper left on the seat and
noticed that the headlines were about the sinking
of the Super Ferry while on its way to Cebu. He
went over the list of missing passengers who were
presumed dead and came across the name of his
grandfather who had raised him from childhood
after he was orphaned. He was shocked and his
mind went black for minutes, after which he ran
amuck and, using his balisong, started stabbing at
the passengers who then scampered away, with
three of them jumping and landing on the road
below. All the three passengers died later of their
injuries at the hospital. Is Luis liable for the death of
the three passengers who jumped out of the
moving train? (2001, 1996, 1994, 1987)

A: Yes, Luis is liable for their deaths because he was
committing a felony when he started stabbing at the
passengers and such wrongful act was the proximate
cause of said passengers jumping out of the train;
hence, their deaths. Under Art. 4 of the RPC, any
person committing a felony shall incur criminal
liability although the wrongful act done be different
from that which he intended. In this case, the death
of the three passengers was the direct, natural and
logical consequence of Luis felonious act which
created an immediate sense of danger in the minds
of said passengers who tried to avoid or escape from
it by jumping out of the train.
Q: What do you understand by aberratio ictus,
error in personae and praeter intentionem? (1999
1994, 1989)

A: Aberratio ictus or mistake in the blow occurs
when the offender delivered the blow at his
intended victim but missed and instead such blow
landed on an unintended victim. The situation
generally brings about complex crimes where from a
single act, two or more grave or less grave felonies
may result, namely, the attempt against the
intended victim and the consequence on the
unintended victim. It is only when the resulting
crimes are only light that complex crimes do not
result and separate penalties may be imposed.

Error in personae or mistake in identity occurs when
the offender actually hit the person to whom the
blow was directed but turned out to be different
from and not the victim intended. The criminal
liability of the offender is not affected unless the
mistake in identity resulted to a crime different from
what the offender intended to commit, in which
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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
QuAMTO (1987-2010)

UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
case the lesser penalty between the crime intended
and the crime committed shall be imposed but in the
maximum period (Art. 49, RPC).

In praeter intentionem, the injurious result is greater
than that intended by the offender. This is a
mitigating circumstance of lack of intent to commit
so grave a wrong when the resulting felony could not
reasonably be anticipated or foreseen by the
offender from the act or means employed by him.

Q: What is the doctrine of implied conspiracy?
(2003, 1998)

A: The doctrine of implied conspiracy holds two or
more person participating in the commission of a
crime collectively responsible and liable as co-
conspirators although absent any agreement to that
effect, when they act in concert, demonstrating
unity of criminal intent and a common purpose or
objective. The existence of conspiracy can be
inferred or deduced from the manner the
participants in the commission of crime carried out
its execution and thus the act of one shall be
deemed the act of all.

Q: Ricky was reviewing for the bar exam when the
commander of a vigilante group came to him and
showed him a list of five policemen to be liquidated
by them for graft and corruption. He was further
asked if any of them is innocent. After going over
the list, Ricky pointed to two of the policemen as
honest. Later, the vigilante group liquidated the
three other policemen in the list. The commander
of the vigilante group reported the liquidation to
Ricky. Is Ricky criminally liable? Explain. (2008)

A: No, there was no conspiracy between Ricky and
the Commander of vigilante. Mere vouching for the
honesty of 2 policemen in the list cannot make him a
co-conspirator for the killing. Ricky enjoys the
presumption of innocence.

Q: Angelo devised a Ponzi Scheme in which 500
persons were deceived into investing their money
upon a promise of a capital return of 25%,
computed monthly, and guaranteed by post-dated
checks. During the first two months following the
investment, the investors received their profits, but
thereafter, Angelo vanished. Angelo was charged
with 500 counts of estafa and 2,000 counts of
violation of Batas Pambansa (BP) 22. In his motion
to quash, Angelo contends that he committed a
continued crime, or delito continuado, hence, he
committed only one count of estafa and one count
of violation of BP 22. (2009)

1. What is delito continuado?
2. Is Angelos contention tenable? Explain.

A:
1. Delito continuado refers to a crime
constituted by several overt acts committed
by the offender in one place, at about the
same time, and all such overt acts violate
one and the same provision of penal law,
thus, demonstrating that all such acts are
the product of a single indivisible criminal
resolution. Hence, all said acts are
considered as one crime only.
2. No. His contention is not tenable. He
committed as many counts of estafa against
the 500 victims and 2000 counts of violation
of BP 22, since each swindling is achieved
through distinct fraudulent machinations
contrived at different times or dates, and in
different amounts. Moreover, his drawing
separate checks payable to each payee is a
separate criminal resolution, as they must
be of different amounts and of different
dates. He acted with separate fraudulent
intent against each swindling victim and
had distinct criminal intent in drawing and
issuing each check. It cannot be maintained
that his acts are the product of one criminal
resolution only.

Q: What is delito continuado? Differentiate it from
a continuing crime (2005, 1994)

A: Delito continuado or continued crime is
constituted by a series of overt acts committed by
the offender arising from a single criminal resolution
which are carried out in the same place and at about
the same time andviolating one and the same penal
provision. On the other hand, a continuing offense is
one whose essential ingredients took place in more
than one municipality or city, so much so that the
criminal prosecution may be instituted and the place
tried in the competent court of any one of such
municipality or city.

Q: Distinguish between compound and complex
crimes (2004, 1999)

A: Compound crimes result when the offender
committed only a single felonious act from which
two or more crimes resulted. The resulting crimes
are limited only to grave and/or less grave felonies.
Hence, light felonies are excluded even though the
resulting from the same single act. Complex crimes
result when the offender has to commit an offense
as a necessary means for committing another
offense.

Q: Distinguish an ordinary complex crime from a
special complex crime (2005, 2003, 1999)

A: An ordinary complex crime is made up of two or
more crimes being punished in distinct provisions of
the Revised Penal Code but alleged in one
information either because they were brought about
by a single felonious act or because one offense is a
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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
QuAMTO (1987-2010)

UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
necessary means for committing the other offense
or offenses. They are alleged in one information so
that only one penalty shall be imposed. The penalty
for the most serious crime shall be imposed and in
its maximum period.

In special complex crime, also known as composite
crime, the component crimes constitute a single
indivisible offense and are thus penalized as one
crime under one Article of the Revised Penal Code.
The component crimes are not regarded as distinct
crimes and so it is the penalty specifically provided
for the special complex crime that shall be applied.


CIRCUMSTANCES AFFECTING CRIMINAL LIABILITY

Q: Distinguish between justifying and exempting
circumstance (2004, 1998)

A: Justifying circumstance affects the act, not the
actor; while exempting circumstance affects the
actor. In justifying circumstance, no criminal and
generally, no civil liability is incurred; while in
exempting circumstance, civil liability is generally
incurred although there is no criminal liability.

Q: Jack and Jill have been married for seven years.
One night, Jack came home drunk. Finding no food
on the table, Jack started hitting Jill only to
apologize the following day. A week later, the same
episode occurred Jack came home drunk and
started hitting Jill. Fearing for her life, Jill left and
stayed with her sister. To woo Jill back, Jack sent
her floral arrangements of spotted lilies and
confectioneries. Two days later, Jill returned home
and decided to give Jack another chance. After
several days, however, Jack again came home
drunk. The following day, he was found dead. Jill
was charged with parricide but raised the defense
of battered woman syndrome.

1. Define Battered Woman Syndrome.
2. What are the three phases of the
Battered Woman Syndrome?
3. Would the defense prosper despite the
absence of any of the elements for
justifying circumstances of self-defense
under the Revised Penal Code? Explain.
(2010)

A:
1. Battered woman syndrome refers to a
scientifically defined pattern of
psychological and behavioral symptoms
found in women living in battering
relationships as a result of cumulative
abuse (Sec. 3(d) of R.A. 9262)
2. The three phases of BWS are: a.) tension-
building phase, b.) acute battering incident,
and c.) tranquil, loving or non violent phase
(People v. Genosa GR No. 135981, Jan. 15,
2004)
3. Yes. Sec. 26 of R.A. 9262 provides that
victim survivors who are found by the
courts to be suffering from battered woman
syndrome does not incur any Criminal and
civil liability notwithstanding the absence of
any of the elements for justifying
circumstances of self defense under the
RPC.

Q: Distinguish between entrapment and instigation
(2003, 1995)

A: In entrapment, the criminal design originates
from and is already in the mind of the lawbreaker
even before entrapment and that the law enforcers
resort to ways and means for the purpose of
capturing the lawbreaker in flagrante delicto. This
circumstance is then no bar to prosecution and
conviction of the lawbreaker. In instigation, the idea
and design to bring about the commission of the
crime originate and developed in the mind of the law
enforcers who induce, lure or incite a person who is
not minded to commit a crime and would not
otherwise commit it, into committing the crime. This
circumstance absolves the accused from criminal
liability.

Q: Joe was 17 years old when he committed
homicide in 2005. The crime is punishable by
reclusion temporal. After two years in hiding, he
was arrested and appropriately charged in May
2007. Since Republic Act 9344 (Juvenile Justice and
Welfare Act of 2006) was already in effect, Joe
moved to avail of the process of intervention or
diversion.

1. What is intervention or diversion? Is Joe
entitled to intervention or diversion?
Explain.
2. Suppose Joes motion for intervention or
diversion was denied, and he was
convicted two (2) years later when Joe was
already 21 years old, should the judge
apply the suspension of sentence? Explain
3. Suppose Joe was convicted of attempted
murder with a special aggravating
circumstance and was denied suspension
of sentence, would he be eligible for
probation under Presidential Decree (PD)
968, considering that the death penalty is
imposable for the consummated felony?
Explain (2009)

A:
1. Intervention refers to a series of activities
which are designed to address issues that
caused the child to commit an offense. It
may take the form of an individualized
treatment program which may include
counseling, skills training, education, and
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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
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UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
other activities that will enhance his/her
psychological, emotional and psycho-social
well-being. This is available to a child 15
years old or less at the time of the
commission of the offense or although over
15 but below 18 years old at the time of
commission of the crime, the child acted
without discernment.

Diversion refers to an alternative, child
appropriate process of determining the
responsibility and treatment of a child in
conflict with the law on the basis of his/her
social, cultural, economic, psychological or
educational background without resorting
to formal court proceedings. This process
governs when the child is over 15 years old
but below 18 at the time of the commission
of the crime and he acted with
discernment. Joe is entitled to diversion.
Being only 17 years old at the time he
committed the crime of homicide, he is
treated as a child in conflict with the law
under RA 9344

2. No. the judge should not suspend the
sentence anymore because Joe was already
21 years old. Suspension of sentence is
availing under R.A. 9344 only until a child
reaches the maximum age of 21 years.

3. Yes. He would be eligible for probation
because the penalty imposable on Joe will
not exceed 6 years imprisonment. Even if it
would be considered that the crime
committed was punishable by death, the
penalty as far Joe is concerned can only be
reclusion perpetua because R.A 9344
forbids the imposition of the capital
punishment upon the offenders
thereunder. The murder being attempted
only, the prescribed penalty is 2 degree
lower than reclusion perpetua; hence,
prision mayor. Because Joe was 17 years old
when he committed the crime, the penalty
of prision mayor should be lowered further
by one degree because his minority is a
privileged mitigating circumstance; hence,
prision correccional or imprisonment within
the range of 6 months and 1 day to 6 years
is the imposable.

Q: While his wife was on a 2-year scholarship
abroad, Romeo was having an affair with his maid
Dulcinea. Realizing that the affair was going
nowhere, Dulcinea told Romeo that she was going
back to the province to marry her childhood
sweetheart. Clouded by anger and jealousy, Romeo
strangled Dulcinea to death while she was sleeping
in the maids quarters. The following day, Romeo
was found catatonic inside the maids quarters. He
was brought to the National Center for Mental
Health (NCMH) where he was diagnosed to be
mentally unstable. Charged with murder, Romeo
pleaded insanity as a defense.

1. Will Romeos defense prosper? Explain.
2. What is the effect of the diagnosis of the
NCMH on the case? (The diagnosis will be
taken as a defense of insanity) (2010)

A:
1. No, Romeos defense of insanity will not
prosper because, even assuming that
Romeo was insane when diagnosed after he
committed the crime, insanity as a defense
to the commission of a crime must have
existed and proven to be existing at the
time precise moment when the crime was
committed. The facts of the case indicate
that Romeo committed the crime with
discernment
2. The effect of the diagnosis made by NCMH
sis possibly a suspension of the proceedings
against Romeo and his commitment to
appropriate institution for treatment until
he could already understand the
proceedings

Q: True or False: Voluntary surrender is a
mitigating circumstance in all acts and omissions
punishable under the Revised Penal Code. (2009)

A: False. Voluntary surrender may not be
appreciated in cases of criminal negligence under
Art. 365 since in such cases, the courts are
authorized to impose a penalty without considering
Art. 62 regarding mitigating and aggravating
circumstances.

PERSONS CRIMINALLY LIABLE/DEGREE OF
PARTICIPATION

Q: Ponciano borrowed Rubens gun, saying that he
would use it to kill Freddie. Because Ruben also
resented Freddie, he readily lent his gun, but told
Ponciano: "O, pagkabaril mo kay Freddie, isauli mo
kaagad, ha." Later, Ponciano killed Freddie, but
used a knife because he did not want Freddies
neighbors to hear the gunshot
1. What, if any, is the liability of Ruben?
Explain.
2. Would your answer be the same if, instead
of Freddie, it was Manuel, a relative of
Ruben, who was killed by Ponciano using
Rubens gun? Explain. (2009)

A:
1. Rubens liability is that of an accomplice
because he merely cooperated in
Poncianos determination to kill Freddie.
Such cooperation is not indispensable to
the killing, as in fact the killing was carried
out without the use of Rubens gun. Neither
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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
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UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
may Ruben be regarded as a co-conspirator
since he was not a participant in the
decision-making of Ponciano to kill Freddie;
he merely cooperated in carrying out the
criminal plan which was already in place.
2. No. The answer would not be the same
because Ruben lent his gun purposely for
the killing of Freddie only, not only for any
other killing. Poncianos using Rubens gun
in killing a person other than Freddie is
beyond Rubens criminal intent and willing
involvement. Only Ponciano will answer for
the crime against Manuel. It has been ruled
that when the owner of the gun knew that
it would be used to kill a particular person,
the owner of the gun is not an accomplice
as to the killing of another person. While
there was community of design between
Ponciano and Ruben, there was none with
respect to the killing.

Q: Manolo revealed to his friend Domeng his desire
to kill Cece. He likewise confided to Domeng his
desire to borrow his revolver. Domeng lent it.
Manolo shot Cece in Manila with Domeng's
revolver. As his gun was used in the killing,Domeng
asked Mayor Tan to help him escape. The mayor
gave Domeng P5,000.00 and told him to proceed to
Mindanao to hide. Domeng went to Mindanao. The
mayor was later charged as an accessory to Cece's
murder.

1. Can he be held liable for the charge?
Explain.
2. Can he be held liable for any other
offense? Explain fully. (2008)

A:
1. Domeng, being an accomplice and not a
principal to the crime of murder, the Mayor
may not be held liable as an accessory since
he merely assisted in the escape of an
accomplice. Art. 19 of the RPC speak of
harboring or assisting in the escape of a
principal. The mayor can however be held
liable as principal in the crime of maliciously
refraining from instituting or prosecuting an
offender under Art. 208 of the RPC.
2. Yes. For obstruction of justice or violation of
P.D. 1829 for assisting Domeng, who was
involved in the commission of a crime to
escape from Manila to Mindanao.

PENALTIES

Q: What is the difference between reclusion
perpetua and life imprisonment? (2001, 1994)

A: Reclusion perpetua is a penalty prescribed by the
RPC with a fixed duration of imprisonment from 20
years and 1 day to 40 years and carries it with
accessory penalties. Life imprisonment on the other
hand is a penalty prescribed by special laws, with no
fixed duration of imprisonment and without any
accessory penalty.

Q: True or False: Life imprisonment is a penalty
more favorable to the convict than reclusion
perpetua. (2009)

A: False. Life imprisonment is unfavorable to a
convict because the penalty is without a fixed
duration, unlike reclusion perpetua which has a fixed
duration of 40 years and the convict may be eligible
for pardon after 30 years of imprisonment (People v
Penillos, 205 SCRA 546)

Rules on Indeterminate Sentence Law (2007, 2005,
2003, 2002, 1999, 1990, 1989, 1988)

Q: How are the maximum and the minimum terms
of the indeterminate sentence determined? (2002,
1989, 1988)

A: For crimes punished under the Revised Penal
Code, the maximum term of the Indeterminate
Sentence shall be the penalty properly imposable
under the same Code after the penalty properly
imposable under the same Code after considering
the attending mitigating and/or aggravating
circumstances. The minimum term of the same
sentence shall be fixed within the range of the
penalty next lower in degree to that prescribed for
the crime under the said Code.

For crimes punished under special laws, the
indeterminate sentence shall consist of a maximum
term which shall not exceed the maximum fixed by
the special law and a minimum term which shall not
be less than the minimum term prescribed by the
same.

Q: What is the purpose for fixing the maximum and
the minimum terms of the indeterminate sentence?
(2002)

A: The purpose of the law in fixing the minimum
term of the sentence is to set the grace period at
which the convict may be released on parole from
imprisonment, unless by his conduct he is not
deserving of parole and thus he shall continue
serving his prison term in jail but in no case to go
beyond the maximum term fixed in the sentence.

Q: In a conviction for homicide, the trial court
appreciated two (2) mitigating circumstances and
one (1) aggravating circumstance. Homicide under
Article 249 of the Revised Penal Code is punishable
by reclusion temporal, an imprisonment term of
twelve (12) years and one (1) day to twenty (20)
years. Applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law,
determine the appropriate penalty to be imposed.
(2009)

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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
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UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
A: Under the Indeterminate Sentence Law, the
minimum of the sentence shall be anywhere within
the range of 6 years and 1 day to 12 years
imprisonment while the maximum of the sentence
shall be anywhere within the range of Reclusion
Temporal minimum i.e. not lower than 12 years and
1 day to not more than 14 years and 8 months.

Q: When would the Indeterminate Sentence Law be
inapplicable? (2003, 1999, 1988)

A:
a. persons convicted of offenses punished with
death penalty or life-imprisonment;
b. to those convicted of treason, conspiracy or
proposal to commit treason;
c. to those convicted of misprision of treason,
rebellion, sedition or espionage;
d. to those convicted of piracy;
e. to those who are habitual delinquents;
f. to those who have escaped from confinement or
evaded sentence;
g. to those who having been granted conditional
pardon by the Chief Executive shall have violated the
terms thereof;
h. to those whose maximum term of imprisonment
does not exceed one year,
i. to those already sentenced by final judgment at
the time of approval of this Act,
j. those whose sentence imposes penalties which do
not involve imprisonment like destierro

Q: Carlos was charged and convicted of murder. He
was sentenced to life imprisonment and to
indemnify the offended party in the amount of
P30,000. He sought a reconsideration of the penalty
on the ground that he should be entitled to the
benefits of the Indeterminate Sentence Law. Decide
(1990)

A: Carlos is not entitled to avail of the Indeterminate
Sentence because Sec 2 of said law specifically
disqualifies and disallows application thereof to
persons sentenced to life imprisonment.

Q: While serving sentence for destierro, Macky
entered the prohibited area and had pot session
with Ivy. Is Macky entitled to an indeterminate
sentence in case he is found guilty of use of
prohibited substances? (2007)

A: No, Macky is not entitled to the benefit of the
Indeterminate sentence law for having evaded the
sentence which placed him on destierro. Sec. 2 of
the said law expressly provides that the law shall not
apply to those who have evade sentence. Moreover,
the penalty for use of any dangerous drug by a first
offender is rehabilitation for a minimum period of 6
months. The Indeterminate sentence law does not
apply when the penalty is imprisonment not
exceeding 1 year.

Q: Harold was convicted of a crime defined and
penalized by a special penal law where the
imposable penalty is from 6 months as minimum to
3 years as maximum. Can the court correctly
impose the following penalties:
a. a straight penalty of 10 months
b. 6 months as minimum to 11 months as maximum
c. a straight penalty of 2 years (2005, 1999)

A:
a. The court may validly impose a straight penalty of
10 months imprisonment because the penalty
prescribed by law is imprisonment of 6 months to 3
years and the Indeterminate Sentence Law does not
apply when the penalty imposed is imprisonment
which does not exceed 1 year.

b. a prison term of 6 months as minimum to 11
months as maximum may not be imposed by the
court because the indeterminate sentence law does
not apply when the penalty imposed as maximum of
the sentence is imprisonment which does not
exceed 1 year.

c. the court may not validly impose a straight penalty
of 2 years because the Indeterminate sentence law
requires the court to set a minimum and a maximum
of the sentence where the imprisonment to be
imposed already exceeds 1 year, unless the offender
is disqualified from the benefits of the said law.

Q: An agonizing and protracted trial having come to
a close, the judge found A guilty beyond reasonable
doubt of homicide and imposed on him a straight
penalty of SIX (6) YEARS and ONE (1) DAY of prision
mayor.
The public prosecutor objected to the sentence on
the ground that the proper penalty should have
been TWELVE (12) YEARS and ONE (1) DAY of
reclusion temporal.

The defense counsel chimed in, contending that
application of the Indeterminate Sentence Law
should lead to the imposition of a straight penalty
of SIX (6) MONTHS and ONE (1) DAY of prision
correccional only. Who of the three is on the right
track? Explain. (2010)

A: None of the contentions is correct because the
Indeterminate Sentence Law has not been followed.
The imposition of penalty for the crime of homicide,
which is penalized by imprisonment exceeding one
(1) year and is divisible, is covered by the
Indeterminate Sentence Law. The said law required
that the sentence in this case should reflect a
minimum term for purposes of parole, and a
maximum term fixing the limit of the imprisonment.
Imposing a straight penalty is incorrect.

RULES ON PROBATION (1988, 1989, 1990, 1992,
1993, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005)

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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
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UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
Q. Who are the offenders disqualified from availing
themselves the benefits of the probation law?
(1988)

A: The following offenders are disqualified from
availing of the benefits of the Probation Law:

a. those sentenced to serve a maximum term of
imprisonment of more than 6 years
b. those convicted of subversion or any crime
against national security or public order
c. those who have previously been convicted by
final judgment of an offense punished by
imprisonment of not less than one month and one
day and/ or a fine of not less than P200
d. those who have been once on probation under
the provisions of the decree
e. those who are already serving sentence at the
time the substantive provisions of this decree
applicable pursuant to Sec 33 of PD 968.

Q: Matt was found guilty of drug trafficking while
his younger brother Jeff was found guilty of
possession of equipment, instrument, apparatus
and other paraphernalia for dangerous drugs under
Section 12 of Republic Act No. 9165. Matt filed a
petition for probation. Jeff appealed his conviction
during the pendency of which he also filed a
petition for probation. The brothers counsel
argued that they being first time offenders, their
petitions for probation should be granted. How
would you resolve the brothers petitions for
probation? Explain. (2010)

A: The brothers petition for probation should both
be denied. Matts petition for probation shall be
denied because he was convicted for drug
trafficking. Sec. 24 of R.A. 9165 expressly provides
that Any person convicted for drug trafficking or
pushing regardless of the penalty imposed by the
court, cannot avail of the privilege granted by the
Probation Law. On the other hand, Jeffs application
for probation cannot also be entertained or granted
because he has already appealed his conviction by
the trial court.

Q: PX was convicted and sentenced to
imprisonment of thirty days and a fine of one
hundred pesos. Previously, PX was convicted of
another crime for which the penalty imposed on
him was thirty days only. Is PX entitled to
probation? (2004, 2002, 1990)

A: Yes, PX may apply for probation since the penalty
imposed on him does not exceed 6 years. The
previous conviction for another crime does not
disqualify him since the penalty for his previous
conviction did not exceed 1 month.

Q: Juan was convicted by the Regional Trial Court of
a crime and sentenced to suffer the penalty of
imprisonment for a minimum of eight years. He
appealed both his conviction and the penalty
imposed upon him to the Court of Appeals. The
appellate court ultimately sustained Juans
conviction but reduced his sentence to a maximum
of four years and eight months imprisonment.
Could Juan forthwith file and application for
probation? (2003, 2001, 1992)

A: No, Juan can no longer avail of the probation
because he appealed from the judgment of
conviction of the trial court, and therefore, cannot
apply for probation anymore. Section 4 of the
Probation Law, as amended, mandates that no
application for probation shall be entertained or
granted if the accused has perfected an appeal from
the judgment of conviction.

Q: A was charged with theft and upon arraignment,
pleaded guilty to the charge. He was detained for
failure to post bail. After 2 months, a decision was
rendered, sentencing A to an indeterminate
sentence of 6 months and 1 day as minimum to 1
year and 1 month as maximum and to pay the
offended party the amount of P700. On January 16,
1985, the very day the sentence was read to A, the
Judge issued a Commitment Order addressed to the
Provincial Jail Warden. On January 28, 1985, A
applied for probation but his application was
denied on the ground that the sentence of
conviction became final and executory on January
16, 1985, when A commenced to serve his
sentence. Is A eligible for probation? (1989, 1993)

A: A is still eligible for probation since he filed his
application for probation within 15 days from the
promulgation of the judgment. Under the Probation
law, the accused may apply for probation within the
period for perfecting an appeal which is 15 days
from promulgation or notice thereof. The probation
law does not speak of filing an application for
probation before judgment has become final. It only
speaks of filing the application within the period for
perfecting an appeal. There is nothing in the
probation law which bars an accused who has
commenced to serve his sentence from filing an
application for probation provided he does so within
the period for perfecting an appeal.

Q: May a probationer appeal from the decision
revoking the grant of probation or modifying the
terms and conditions thereof? (2002)

A: No. Under Sec. 4 of the Probation Law, as
amended, an order granting or denying probation is
not appealable.

Q: a.) Maganda was charged with violation of BP 22
punishable by imprisonment of not less than 30
days but not more than 1 year or a fine shall not
exceed P200,000 or both. The court convicted her
of the crime and sentenced her to pay a fine of
P50,000 with subsidiary imprisonment in case of
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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
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UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
insolvency and to pay the private complainant the
amount of the check. Maganda was unable to pay
the fine but filed a petition for probation. The court
granted the petition subject to the condition,
among others, that she should not change her
residence without the courts prior approval. What
is the proper period of probation? (2005)

A: The period of probation shall not be less than the
total number of days of subsidiary imprisonment or
more than twice said number of days as computed
at the rate established under the RPC.

b.) Supposing before the Order of Discharge was
issued by the court but after the lapse of the period
of probation, Maganda transferred residence
without prior approval of the court. May the court
revoke the Order of Probation and order her to
serve the subsidiary imprisonment?

A: Yes, the court may revoke the Order of Probation
and order the convicted accused to serve the
subsidiary imprisonment, because she violated the
condition of her probation before the Order of
Discharge was issued by the court. The conditions of
probation are not co-terminous with the period of
probation; such conditions continue even after the
probation had ended and thus requires faithful
compliance or fulfillment, for as long as the court
which placed the convict on probation has not issued
the Order of Discharge that would release her from
probation (Bala v. Martinez, 181 SCRA 459)

MODIFICATION AND EXTINCTION OF CRIMINAL
LIABILITY

Q: OW is a private person engaged in cattle
ranching. One night, he saw AM stab CV
treacherously, then throw the dead mans body
into ravine. For 25 years, CVs body was never seen
nor found; and OW told no one what he had
witnessed. Yesterday after consulting the parish
priest, OW decided to tell the authorities what he
had witnessed, and revealed that AM had killed CV
25 years ago. Can AM be prosecuted for murder
despite the lapse of 25 years? (2004, 2000)

A: Yes, AM can be prosecuted for murder despite
the lapse of 25 years, because the crime has not yet
prescribed and legally, its prescriptive period has not
even commenced to run. The period of a crime shall
commence to run only from the day on which the
crime shall commence to run only from the day on
which the crime has been discovered by the
offended party, the authorities or their agents (Art.
91, RPC). OW, a private citizen who saw the killing
but never disclosed it is not the offended party nor
has the crime been discovered by the authorities or
their agents.

Q: Antero Makabayan was convicted of the crime
of Rebellion. While serving sentence, he escaped
from jail. Captured, he was charged with, and
convicted of, Evasion of Service of Sentence.
Thereafter, the President of the Philippines issued
an amnesty proclamation for the offense of
Rebellion. Antero applied for and was granted the
benefit of the amnesty proclamation. Antero then
filed a petition for habeas corpus, praying for his
immediate release from confinement. He claims
that the amnesty extends to the offense of Evasion
of Service of Sentence. As judge, will you grant the
petition? Discuss fully. (2009)

A: Yes, I will grant the petition because the sentence
that was evaded proceeded from the crime of
Rebellion which has been obliterated by the grant of
amnesty to the offender. Since the amnesty erased
the criminal complexion of the act committed by the
offender as a crime of rebellion and rendered such
act as though innocent, the sentence lost its legal
basis. The purported evasion thereof cannot
therefore subsist (People v. Patriarca, 341 SCRA
464). Amnesty obliterates, not only the basis of
conviction but also all the legal effects thereof.

CRIMES AGAINST NATIONAL SECURITY

Q: Because peace negotiations on the Spratlys
situation had failed, the Peoples Republic of China
declared war against the Philippines. Myra, a
Filipina who lives with her Italian expatriate
boyfriend, discovered e-mail correspondence
between him and a certain General Tung Kat Su of
China. On March 12, 2010, Myra discovered that on
even date her boyfriend had sent an e-mail to
General Tung Kat Su, in which he agreed to provide
vital information on the military defense of the
Philippines to the Chinese government in exchange
for P1 million and his safe return to Italy. Two
weeks later, Myra decided to report the matter to
the proper authorities. Did Myra commit a crime?
Explain. (2010)

A: Yes, Myra committed the crime of Misprision of
treason under Art. 116 of RPC for failing to report or
make known as soon as possible to the governor or
provincial fiscal or to the mayor or fiscal of the city
where she resides, the conspiracy between her
Italian boyfriend and the Chinese General to commit
treason against the Philippine Government in time of
war. She decided to report the matter to the proper
authorities only after two weeks.

Q: The inter-island vessel M/V Viva Lines I, while
cruising off Batanes, was forced to seek shelter at
the harbor of Kaoshiung, Taiwan because of a
strong typhoon. While anchored in said harbor,
Max, Baldo and Bogart arrived in a speedboat, fired
a bazooka at the bow of the vessel, boarded it and
divested the passengers of their money and
jewelry. A passenger of M/V Viva Lines I, Dodong
took advantage of the confusion to settle an old
grudge with another passenger, and killed him.
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UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
After their apprehension, all four were charged
with qualified piracy before a Philippine court.
1. Was the charge of qualified piracy against
the three person ( Max, Badong and Bogart
) who boarded the inter-island vessel
correct? Explain.
2. Was Dodong correctly charged before the
Philippine court for qualified piracy?
Explain. (2008)

A:
1. Yes, they boarded and fired upon the ship,
and divested the passengers of their money
and jewelry. As long as murder or homicide
is committed as a result or on occasion of
piracy, the special complex crime of
qualified piracy is committed.
2. Dodong was correctly charged before
Philippine court, though it should be for
murder or homicide because he did not act
in conspiracy or in concert with the pirates,
Under the territorial principle of jurisdiction
in International Law, the Philippine court
will have jurisdiction over the offense of
murder or homicide because it was
committed by Dodong on a vessel of
Philippine registry, and the crime is also
cognizable by the courts of Kaoshing
Taiwan.

CRIMES AGAINST PUBLIC ORDER

Q: Rigoberto gate-crashed the 71st birthday party
of Judge Lorenzo. Armed with a piece of wood
commonly known as dos por dos, Rigoberto hit
Judge Lorenzo on the back, causing the latters
hospitalization for 30 days. Upon investigation, it
appeared that Rigoberto had a grudge against
Judge Lorenzo who, two years earlier, had cited
Rigoberto in contempt and ordered his
imprisonment for three (3) days.

1. Is Rigoberto guilty of Direct Assault? Why
or Why not?
2. Would your answer be the same if the
reason for the attack was that when Judge
Lorenzo was still a practicing lawyer ten
years ago, he prosecuted Rigoberto and
succeeded in sending him to jail for one
year? Explain your answer. (2009)

A:
1. No. Regoberto is not guilty of direct assault
because Judge Lorenzo has ceased to be a
judge when he was attacked. He has retired
from his position as a person in authority
when he was attacked. Hence, the attack on
him cannot be regarded as against a person
in authority anymore.
2. Yes. Rigoberto is guilty of Direct Assault
because the employment of violence was
by reason of an actual performance of a
duty by the offended party acting as a
practicing lawyer. Lawyers are considered
persons in authority by virtue of BP 873,
which states that lawyers in the actual
performance of their professional duties or
on the occasion of such performance shall
be deemed persons in authority. But the
crime having been committed 10 years ago,
may have already prescribed because it is
punishable by a correctional penalty.

Q: A teacher at Mapa High School, having gotten
mad at X, one of his pupils, because of the latter's
throwing paper clips at his classmates, twisted his
right ear. X went out of the classroom crying and
proceeded home located at the back of the school.
He reported to his parents Y and z what A had done
to him. Y and Z immediately proceeded to the
school building and because they were running and
talking in loud voices, they were seen by the
barangay chairman, B, who followed them as he
suspected that an untoward incident might happen.
Upon seeing A inside the classroom, X pointed him
out to his father, Y, who administered a fist blow
on A, causing him to fall down. When Y was about
to kick A, B rushed towards Y and pinned both of
the latter's arms. Seeing his father being held by B,
X went near and punched B on the face, which
cause him to lose his grip on Y. Throughout this
incident, Z shouted words of encouragement at Y,
her husband, and also threatened to slap A. Some
security guards arrived, intervened and sorrounded
X, Y, and Z so that they could be investigated in the
principal's office. Before leaving, Z passed near A
and threw a small flower pot at him but it was
deflected by B. What if any, are the respective
criminal liability of X. Y. and Z? Would your answer
be the same if B were a barangay tanod only?
(2001,2002, 1993)

A: X is liable for Direct Assault only, assuming the
physical injuries inflicted on B, the Brangay Chairman
to be only slight and hence, would be absorbed in
the direct assault. A Barangay Chairman is a person
in authority and in this case was performing his duty
to maintaining peace and order when attacked.

Y is liable for the complex crime of Direct Assault
with Less serious Physical Injuries for the fist blow on
A, the teacher, which caused the latter to fall down.
For purposes of the crimes in Art. 148 and 151 of the
RPC, a teacher is considered a person in authority
and having been attacked by Y by reason of his
performance of official duty, direct assault is
committed with the resulting less serious physical
injuries complexed.

Z, the mother of X may only be liable as an
accomplice to the complex crimes of direct assault
with less serious physical injuries committed by Y.
Her participation should not be considered as that of
a co-principal, since her reactions wre only incited by
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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
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UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
her relationship to X and Y as the mother of X and
the wife of Y.

If B were a Branagay Tanod only, the act of X of
laying a hand on him, being an agent of a person in
authority only would constitute the crime of
Resistance and Disobedience since X, a high school
pupil, could not be considered as having acted out of
contempt for authority but more of helping his
father get free from the grip of B. Laying hand on
anagent of a person in authority is not ipso facto
direct assault, while it would always be direct assault
if done to a person in authority in defiance to the
latter's exercise of authority.

Q: To secure the release of his brother Willy, a
detention prisoner, and his cousin Vincent, who is
serving sentence for homicide, Chito asked the RTC
Branch Clerk of Court to issue an Order which
would allow the two prisoners to be brought out of
jail. At first, the Clerk refused, but when Chito gave
her P50,000.00, she consented. She then prepared
an Order requiring the appearance in court of Willy
and Vincent, ostensibly as witnesses in a pending
case. She forged the judges signature, and
delivered the Order to the jail warden who, in turn,
allowed Willy and Vincent to go out of jail in the
company of an armed escort, Edwin. Chito also
gave Edwin P50,000.00 to leave the two inmates
unguarded for three minutes and provide them
with an opportunity to escape. Thus, Willy and
Vincent were able to escape. What crime or crimes,
if any, had been committed by Chito, Willy,
Vincent, the Branch Clerk of Court, Edwin, and the
jail warden? Explain your answer. (2009)

A: Chito committed the crimes of Delivery of
Prisoners from Jail for working out the escape of
prisoners Willy and Vincent. He is also liable for two
counts of Corruption of Public Officials and
Falsification of Public Documents as a principal by
inducement.

Willy committed the crime of Delivery of Prisoners
from Jail as a principal by indispensable cooperation
of he was aware of the criminal plan of Chito to have
them escape pursuant to such criminal plan;
otherwise he would not be liable for said crime of he
escaped pursuant to human instinct only.

Vincent, being a prisoner serving sentence by final
judgment, committed the crime of Evasion of Service
of Sentence for escaping during the term of his
imprisonment.

The Branch Clerk of Court committed the crimes of
a.) Direct Bribery for accepting the P50,000 in
consideration of the Order she issued to enable the
prisoners to get out of jail, b.) Falsification of Public
Document for forging the judges signature of said
order, c.) Delivery of Prisoners from Jail as a co-
principal of Chito by indispensable cooperation for
making the false order and forging the judges
signature thereon, to enable the prisoners to get out
of jail, d.) Evasion of service of sentence as a co-
principal of Vincent by indispensable cooperation for
making the false order that enabled Vincent to
evade service of his sentence.

Edwin committed the crimes of Infidelity in the
Custody of Prisoners specifically conniving with or
consenting to Evasion for leaving unguarded the
prisoners escorted by him and provide them an
opportunity to escape, and Direct Bribery for
receiving the P50,000 as consideration for leaving
the prisoners unguarded and allowing then the
opportunity to escape.

The jail warden did not commit a crime there being
no showing that he was aware of what his
subordinates had done not of any negligence on his
part that would amount to infidelity in the custody
of prisoners.

CRIMES AGAINST PUBLIC INTEREST

Q: Define Money Laundering. What are the three
(3) stages in money laundering? (2010)

A: Money laundering is the process by which a
person conceals the existence of unlawfully obtained
money and makes it appear to have originated from
lawful sources. The intention behind such a
transaction is to hide the beneficial owner of said
funds and allows criminal organizations or criminals
to enjoy the proceeds of such criminal activities.

The three stages in money laundering are:
a. placement/infusion or the physical disposal of
the criminal proceeds
b. layering or the separation of the criminal
proceeds from their source by creating layers of
financial transactions to disguise such proceeds as
legitimate and to avoid the audit of trail
c. integration or the provision of apparent
legitimacy to the criminal proceeds

Q: There being probable cause to believe that
certain deposits and investments in a bank are
related to an unlawful activity of smuggling by
Alessandro as defined under Republic Act (RA) No.
9160, as amended (Anti-Money Laundering Act) an
application for an order to inquiry into his deposit
was filed with the Regional Trial Court. After
hearing the application, the court granted the
application and issued a freeze order. Pass upon
the correctness of the courts order. Explain. (2010)

A: The freeze order issued by the RTC is not correct
because jurisdiction to issue said freeze order is now
vested with the Court of Appeals. The Regional Trial
Court is without jurisdiction to issue a freeze order
of the money involved.

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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
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UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
Q: Al Chua, a Chinese national, filed a petition
under oath for naturalization, with the Regional
Trial Court of Manila. In his petition, he stated that
he is married to Leni Chua; that he is living with her
in Sampaloc Manila; that he is of good moral
character; and that he has conducted himself in an
irreproachable manner during his stay in the
Philippines. However, at the time of the filing of the
petition, Leni Chua was already living in Cebu, while
Al was living with Babes Toh in Manila, with whom
he has an amorous relationship. After his direct
testimony, Al Chua withdrew his petition for
naturalization. Is he liable for perjury? (2005, 1997,
1996, 1991, 1987)

A: Yes. The crime of perjury is committed by Al Chua
when he stated under oath that he was living with
Leni Chua in Sampaloc when in fact he was living
with his mistress, and Leni Chua was already living in
Cebu at the time of the filing of the petition. It is a
false allegation under oath, on a material matter
required by law in naturalization cases.

CRIMES RELATIVE TO OPIUM AND OTHER
PROHIBITED DRUGS

Q: Following his arrest after a valid buy-bust
operation, Tommy was convicted of violation of
Section 5, Republic Act 9165. On appeal, Tommy
questioned the admissibility of the evidence
because the police officers who conducted the buy-
bust operation failed to observe the requisite
"chain of custody" of the evidence confiscated
and/or seized from him. What is the "chain of
custody" requirement in drug offenses? What is its
rationale? What is the effect of failure to observe
the requirement? (2009)

A: Chain of custody requirement in drug offenses
refers to the duly recorded, authorized movement
and custody of seized dangerous drugs, controlled
chemicals, plant sources of dangerous drugs, and
laboratory equipment for dangerous drugs from the
time of confiscation/seizure thereof from the
offender, to its turn-over and receipt in the forensic
laboratory for examination, to its safekeeping and
eventual presentation/ offer in court as evidence of
the criminal violation, and for destruction.

Its rationale is to preserve the authenticity of the
corpus delicti or body of the crime by rendering it
improbable that the original item seized/confiscated
in the violation has been exchanged or substituted
with another or tampered with or contaminated. It is
a method of authenticating the evidence as would
support a finding beyond reasonable doubt that the
matter is what the prosecution claims it to be.

Failure to observe the chain of custody requirement
renders the evidence questionable, not trustworthy
and insufficient to prove the corpus delicti beyond
reasonable doubt. Hence, Tommy would be
acquitted on reasonable doubt.

CRIMES COMMITTED BY PUBLIC OFFICERS

Q: Malversation (2006, 2005, 2001, 1999, 1990,
1987)

1. A Municipal Treasurer, accountable for public
funds or property, encashed with public funds
private checks drawn in favor of his wife. The
checks bounced, the drawer not having enough
cash in the drawee bank. The municipal treasurer,
in encashing private checks from public funds
violated regulations of his office. Notwithstanding
restitution of the amount of the checks, can the
municipal treasurer nevertheless be criminally
liable? What crime did he commit?

A: He is liable for malversation. Malversation is
committed by a public officer who, by reason of his
duties of his office, is accountable of public funds or
property, shall take, misappropriate, or shall
consent, or through abandonment or negligence,
shall permit any other person to take such public
funds or property. Notwithstanding the restitution of
the amount of the check, the municipal treasurer
will be criminally liable as restitution does not
negate criminal liability although it may be
considered as a mitigating circumstance analogous
to voluntary surrender. However, if the restitution
was made immediately, under vehement protest
against an imputation of malversation, and without
leaving the office, he may not be criminally liable.

2. Alex Reyes, together with Jose Santos, were
former warehousemen of the Rustan Department
Store. In 1986, the PCGG sequestered the assets,
fund and properties of the owners-incorporators of
the store, alleging that they constitute ill gotten
wealth of the Marcos family. Upon their
application, Reyes and Santos were appointed as
fiscal agents of the sequestered building and its
contents, including various vehicles used in the
firms operations. After a few months, an inventory
was conducted and it was discovered that 2
delivery vans were missing. After demand was
made upon them, Reyes and Santos failed ot give
any satisfactory explanation why the cans were
missing or to turn them over to the PCGG; hence,
they were charged with malversation of public
property. During the trial, the two acused claimed
that they are not public accountable officers and if
any crime was committed, it should be estafa.
What is the proper offense committed?

A: The proper offense if malversation of public
property not estafa considering that Reyes and
Santos, upon their application, were constituted as
fiscal agents of the sequestered firm and were given
custody and possession of the sequestered
properties including the delivery cans which later
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they could not account for. They were thus made the
depositary and administrator of properties
deposited by public authority and hence, by the
duties of their office/ position, they are accountable
for such properties. Such properties, having been
sequestered by the government through the PCGG,
are in custodial egis and therefore impressed with
the character of public property, even though the
properties belong to a private individual. The failure
of Reyes and Santos to give any satisfactory
explanation why the vans were missing, is prima
facie evidence that they had put the same to their
personal use.

Q: Eliseo, the deputy sheriff, conducted the
execution sale of the property of Andres to satisfy
the judgment against him in favor of ABC
Corporation, a government-owned or controlled
corporation with an original charter. However, the
representative of the corporation failed to attend
the auction sale. Gonzalo , the winning bidder,
purchased property for P100,000 which he paid to
Eliseo. Instead of remitting the amount to the Clerk
of Court as ex-officio Provincial Sheriff, Eliseo lent
the amount to Myrna, his officemate, who
promised to repay the amount within two months,
with interest thereon. However, Myrna reneged on
her promise. Despite demands of ABC Corporation,
Eliseo failed to remit the said amount.

1. State with reasons, the crime or crimes, if
any, committed by Eliseo.
2. Would your answer to the first question be
the same if ABC Corporattion were a
private corporation? Explain. (2008)

A:
1. Eliseo committed Malversation for allowing
Myrna to misappropriate the money for
which he, as sheriff, is accountable. In this
case, the act of Eliseo of lending the
amount to his officemate is tantamount to
permitting any other person to take the
public funds, considering that the P100,000
involved is a public funds, it should be
turned over to the Office of the Clerk of
Court.
2. The answer would be the same since even if
ABC is a private corporation, Eliseo is still
accountable for it, and the same should be
delivered to the Court. The property was in
custodia legis, and although not strictly
public property, it has become impressed
with the character of public property when
Eliseo, in his official capacity, conducted the
execution sale and received its proceeds.

Q: May a public officer charged under Section 3(b)
of Republic Act No. 3019 [directly or indirectly
requesting or receiving any gift, present, share,
percentage or benefit, for himself or for any other
person, in connection with any contract or
transaction between the government and any other
party, wherein the public officer in his official
capacity has to intervene under the law] also be
simultaneously or successively charged with direct
bribery under Article 210 of the Revised Penal
Code? Explain. (2010)

A: Yes, a public officer charged under Sec. 3 (b) of
R.A. 3019 may also be charged simultaneously or
successively for the crime of direct bribery under
Art. 210 of RPC because the two crimes are
essentially different and are penalized under distinct
philosophies. Whereas violation of Sec. 3(b) of R.A.
3019 is a malum prohibitum, the crime under Art.
210 of RPC is a malum in se. In Merencillo vs. People
G.R. Nos. 142369-70, the Court ruled that the
violation of Section 3(b) of RA 3019 is neither
identical nor necessarily inclusive of direct bribery.
While they have common elements, not all the
essential elements of one offense are included
among or form part of those enumerated in the
other. Whereas the mere request or demand of a
gift, present, share, percentage or benefit is enough
to constitute a violation of Section 3(b) of RA 3019,
acceptance of a promise or offer or receipt of a gift
or present is required in direct bribery. Moreover,
the ambit of Section 3(b) of RA 3019 is specific. It is
limited only to contracts or transactions involving
monetary consideration where the public officer has
the authority to intervene under the law. Direct
bribery, on the other hand, has a wider and more
general scope: (a) performance of an act constituting
a crime; (b) execution of an unjust act which does
not constitute a crime and (c) agreeing to refrain or
refraining from doing an act which is his official duty
to do.

Q: Charina, Clerk of Court of an RTC Branch,
promised the plaintiff in a case pending before the
court that she would convince the Presiding Judge
to decide the case in plaintiffs favor. In
consideration therefor, the plaintiff gave Charina
P20,000.00. Charina was charged with violation of
Section 3 (b) of Republic Act No. 3019, prohibiting
any public officer from directly or indirectly
requesting or receiving any gift, present,
percentage, or benefit in connection with any
contract or transaction x x x wherein the public
officer, in his official capacity, has to intervene
under the law.

While the case was being tried, the Ombudsman
filed another information against Charina for
Indirect Bribery under the Revised Penal Code.
Charina demurred to the second information,
claiming that she can no longer be charged under
the Revised Penal Code having been charged for the
same act under R.A. 3019. Is Charina correct?
Explain. (2009)

A: No. Charina is not correct. Although the charge
for violation of R.A. 3019 and the charge for Indirect
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Bribery arose from the same act, the elements of the
violation charged under R.A. 3019 are not the same
as the felony charged for indirect bribery under the
RPC (Mejia v. Pamaran, 160 SCRA 457). Hence, the
crimes charged are separate and distinct from each
other, with different penalties. The two charges do
not constitute a ground for a motion to dismiss or
motion to quash, as there is no jeopardy against the
accused.

CRIMES AGAINST PERSONS

Q: Murder (2007, 2005, 2004, 2001, 1999, 1996,
1987)

1. Define murder. What are the elements of the
crime?

A: Murder is the unlawful killing of a person which
otherwise would constitute only homicide, had it not
been attended attended by any of the following
circumstances:

a.) with treachery, or taking advantage of superior
strength, or with the aid of armed men, or
employing means to weaken the defense or of
means of persons to insure or afford impunity
b.) in consideration of a price, reward or promise
c.) by means or on the occasion of inundation, fire,
poison, explosion, shipwreck, stranding of a vessel,
derailment or assault upon a railroad, fall of an
airship, or by means of motor vehicles, or with the
aid of any other means involving great waste and
ruin
d.) on occasion of an earthquake, eruption of a
volcano, destructive cyclone, epidemic or other
public calamity
e.) with evident premeditation
f.) with cruelty, by deliberately and inhumanly
augmenting the suffering of the victim, or outraging
or scoffing at his person or corpse

The elements of murder are:
1.) That a person was unlawfully killed;
2.) That such killing was attended by any of the
above mentioned circumstances;
3.) That the killing is not parricide nor infanticide;
4.) That the accused killed the victim.

2. Juan had a land dispute with Pedro for a number
of years. As Juan was coming down to his house, he
saw his brother, Rodolfo attack Pedro with a bolo
from behind. Rodolfo was about to hit Pedro a
second time while the latter was prostrate on the
ground, when Carling, Pedros son, shouted, Ill kill
you This distracted Rodolfo, who turned to
Carling. Rodolfo and Carling fought with their bolos.
Carling suffered a number of wounds and died on
the spot. Pedro who was in serious condition was
rushed to the hospital. He died five days later for
loss of blood because the blood purchased from
Manila which could have saved him did not arrive
on time. What crime/s was committed by Rodolfo?

A: Rodolfo committed murder regarding the killing
of Pedro since Pedro was attacked from behind. The
killing was attended by the qualifying circumstance
of treachery. The mode of attack deprived Pedro of
any chance to defend himself or to retaliate. Rodolfo
is also liable for homicide regarding the killing of
Carling, Pedros son, as that is the result of a fight,
both of them being armed with bolos.

3. Fidel and Fred harbored a long standing grudge
against Jorge who refused to marry their sister
Lorna, after the latter got pregnant by Jorge. After
weeks of surveillance, they finally cornered Jorge in
Ermita, Manila when the latter was walking home
late at night. Fidel and Fred forcibly brought Jorge
to Zambales where they kept him hogtied in a small
nipa house located in the middle of a rice field. Two
days later, they killed Jorge and dumped his body
into the river. What crime/s did Fidel and Fred
commit?

A: Fidel and Fred committed the crime of murder,
the killing being qualified by evident premeditation.
This is due to the long standing grudge entertained
by the two accused occasioned by the victims
refusal to marry their sister after impregnating her.
In People v. Alfeche, 219 SCRA 85, the intention of
the accused is determinative of the crime
committed. Where the intention is to kill the victim
and the latter is forcibly taken to another place and
later killed, it is murder. There is no indication that
the offenders intended to deprive the victim of his
liberty. Whereas, if the victim is kidnapped, and
taken to another situs and killed as an afterthought,
it is kidnapping with homicide.

4. Mang Jose, a septuagenarian, was walking with is
ten year old grandson along Paseo de Roxas and
decided to cross at the intersection of Makati
Avenue but both were hit by a speeding CRV
Hondavan and were sent sprawling on the
pavement, a meter apart. The driver, a Chinese
mestizo, stopped his car after hitting the two
victims but then reversed his gears and ran over
Mang Joses prostrate body anew and third time by
advancing his car forward. Mang Jose suffered
multiple fractures and broken ribs, causing his
instant death. The driver was arrested and charged
with murder for the death of Mang Jose. Is the
charge correct?

A: Yes, the charge is correct. For deliberately
running over Mang Joses prostrate body after
having bumped him and his grandson, the driver
indeed committed murder qualified by treachery.
Said drivers deliberate intent to kill Mang Jose was
demonstrated by his running over the latters body
twice, by backing up the van and driving it forward,
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whereas the victim was helpless and not in a
position to defend himself or to retaliate.

Q: Roger, the leader of a crime syndicate in Malate,
Manila, demanded the payment by Antonio, the
owner of a motel in that area, of P10,000 a month
as "protection money". With the monthly payment,
Roger assured, the syndicate would provide
protection to Antonio, his business, and his
employees. Should Antonio refuse, Roger warned,
the motel owner would either be killed or his
establishment destroyed. Antonio refused to pay
the protection money. Days later, at round 3:00 in
the morning, Mauro, a member of the criminal
syndicate, arrived at Antonio's home and hurled a
grenade inti an open window of the bedroom
where Antonio, his wife and their three year-old
daughter were sleeping. All three of them were
killed instantly when the grenade exploded. State,
with reason, the crime or crimes that had been
committed as well as the aggravating
circumstances, if any, attendant thereto. (2008)

A: By demanding protection money under threat and
intimidation that the businessman would be killed or
his establishment destroyed if he would refuse to
pay the protection money, the crime of grave threats
is committed by Roger, the leader of the crime
syndicate.

Roger and Mauro conspired to commit the crime of
murder qualified by treachery, with the use of
means involving great waste and ruin. In this case,
Mauro is liable as a principal by direct participation
by using a grenade and hurled into an open window
of the victims bedroom. Killing the victims while
they were sleeping and in no position to defend
themselves is a treacherous act (People v. Aguilar, 88
Phil 693)

The aggravating circumstances includes Sec. 3 of R.A.
8294 which provides that when a person commits
any of the crime under RPC or special laws with the
use of explosive and like incendiary devices which
resulted in the death of any person. Likewise is
Art.23 of R.A. 7659 as organized/syndicated crime
group. It also includes dwelling because the killings
were committed in the home of the victims who had
not given any provocation, nocturnity, considering
that the offenders carried out the killing at around
3:00AM, indicative of a deliberate choice of
nighttime for the commission of the crime, and
treachery considering that the victims were asleep
when killed.

Q: A and B are husband and wife. A is employed as
a security guard at Landmark, his shift being from
11:00 p.m.to 7:00 a.m. One night, he felt sick and
cold, hence, he decided to go home around
midnight after getting permission from his duty
officer. Upon reaching the front yard of his home,
he noticed that the light in the master bedroom
was on and that the bedroom window was open.
Approaching the front door, he was surprised to
hear sighs and giggles inside the bedroom. He
opened the door carefully and peeped inside where
he saw his wife B having sexual intercourse with
their neighbor C. A rushed inside and grabbed C but
the latter managed to wrest himself free and
jumped out of the window. A followed suit and
managed to catch C again and after a furious
struggle, managed also to strangle him to death. A
then rushed back to his bedroom where his wife B
was cowering under the bed covers. Still enraged, A
hit B with fist blows and rendered her unconscious.
The police arrived after being summoned by their
neighbors and arrested A who was detained,
inquested and charged for the death of C and
serious physical injuries of B. Is A liable for the
death of C? Why? Is A liable for Bs injuries? (2007,
2005, 2001, 1991)

A: Yes, A is liable for Cs death but under the
exceptional circumstances in Art. 247 of the RPC
where only destierro is prescribed. Art. 247 governs
since A surprised his wife B in the act of having
sexual intercourse with C, and the killing of C was
immediately thereafter as the discovery, escape,
pursuit and killing of C form one continuous act.
Likewise, A is liable for serious physical injuries he
inflicted on his wife B but under the same
exceptional circumstances in Art. 247 of RPC.

Q: The conduct of wife A aroused the ire of her
husband B. Incensed with anger almost beyond his
control, B could not help but inflict physical injuries
on A. Moments after B started hitting A with his
fists, A suddenly complained of severe chest pains.
B, realizing that A was indeed in serious trouble,
immediately brought her to the hospital. Despite
efforts to alleviate A's pains, she died of heart
attack. It turned out that she had been suffering
from a lingering heart ailment. What crime, if any,
could B be held guilty of? (2003, 1999, 1996, 1994)

A: B could be held liable for parricide because his act
of hitting his wife with fist blows and therewith
inflicting physical injuries on her, is felonious. A
person committing a felonious act incurs criminal
liability although the wrongful consequence is
different from what he intended. Although A died of
heart attack, the said attack was generated by B's
felonious act of hitting her with is fists. Even though
B may have acted without intent to kill his wife, lack
of such intent is of no moment when the victim dies.
However, B may be given the mitigating
circumstance if having acted without intention to
commit so grave a wrong as that committed.

Note: When the husband strikes his pregnant wife, he
commits the crime of maltreatment. Consequently, if the
pregnant wife together with the unborn baby dies, the
husband is liable for parricide with unintentional abortion
there being no intention to cause the abortion of his wife.
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Inasmuch as the single act of striking the pregnant wife
produced 2 grave or less grave felonies, it falls under Art.
48 of RPC (complex crime)

On the other hand, if it is a child which was killed, he/she
must be at least 3 years old to be liable for parricide. If
he/she is less than 3 years old, parricide is not committed,
instead, it is infanticide.

Q: Francis and Joan were sweethearts, but their
parents had objected to their relationship because
they were first cousins. They forged a pact in
writing to commit suicide. The agreement was
shoot each other in the head which they did. Joan
died. Due to medical assistance, Francis survived. Is
Francis criminally liable for the death of Joan?
Explain (2008)

A: Yes. Francis act of shooting Joan, although done
pursuant to a solemn pact is nevertheless felonious
and is the proximate cause of Joans death.
Moreover, Francis is criminally liable for assisting in
the suicide of Joan under Art. 253 of RPC, as
evidenced by their written pact.

Q: Dang was a beauty queen in a university. Job, a
rich classmate, was so enamored with her that he
persistently wooed and pursued her. Dang, being in
love with another man, rejected him. This angered
Job. Sometime in September 2003, while Dang and
her sister Lyn were on their way home, Job and his
minor friend Nonoy grabbed them and pushed
them inside a white van. They brought them in an
abandoned warehouse where they forced them to
dance naked. Thereafter, they brought them to a
hill in a nearby barangay where they took turns
raping them. After satisfying their lust, Job ordered
Nonoy to push Dang down a ravine, resulting in her
death. Lyn ran away but Job and Nonoy chased her
and pushed her inside the van. Then the duo drove
away. Lyn was never seen again. What crime or
crimes were committed by Job and Nonoy? (2006,
1998)

A: Job and Nonoy each committed 2 counts of the
special complex crime of rape with homicide under
Art. 266-B for the rapes respectively committed on
Dang and Lyn. Their felonious acts grabbing and
pushing the victims inside their van and later forcing
them to dance naked may only be appreciated as
part of the violence and lewd desires attending the
rape, and are therefore absorbed by the rape.
Although there is no indication that the same
culprits killed Lyn who was never seen again, it is
reasonable to assume from what the culprits did to
Dang, and from the acts of violence they employed
on Lyn, that they are answerable also for the
presumed death of Lyn whom the culprits took with
them by force and was never seen again. Hence, the
rape committed against her is attended by homicide
giving rise to the special complex crime of rape with
homicide. It would be different if Lyn was not
subjected to physical violence.

Q: AJ, a medical student, was in a border in the
house of Mr. and Mrs. M who had a good-looking
25 year old retarded daughter with the mental age
of an 11 year old girl. One day, when the couple
were out, Perlita, the retarded daughter, entered
AJ's room, came near him and started kissing him.
He tried to avoid her, but she persisted. They had
sexual intercourse. This was repeated everytime
Perlita's parents were out until Perlita got
pregnant. Mr. and Mrs. M filed a complaint of rape
against Aj who claimed that it was Perlita who
seduced him; that Perlita was intelligent, clearly
understood what she was doing; and that since
Perlita was already 25 years old did not herself file
the complaint, her parents had no personality to
file the complaint for rape. How would you resolve
the case? (1987, 1996)

A: The contention of Aj cannot be sustained. Sexual
intercourse with Perlita, who is a mental retardate,
although 25 years old but with a mental age of 11
year old girl is rape. She is the same class as a
woman deprived of reason or otherwise
unconscious. Since she is suffering from an
incapacity, being incompetent on account of her
mental age, the parents have the right to file the
complaint for rape.

CRIMES AGAINST PERSONAL LIBERTY AND SECURITY

Q: Virgilio, armed with a gun, stopped a van along a
major thoroughfare in Manila, pointed the gun at
the driver and shouted: "Tigil! Kidnap ito!"
Terrified, the driver, Juanito, stopped the van and
allowed Virgilio to board. Inside the van were
Jeremias, a 6-year-old child, son of a multi-
millionaire, and Daday, the childs nanny. Virgilio
told Juanito to drive to a deserted place, and there,
ordered the driver to alight. Before Juanito was
allowed to go, Virgilio instructed him to tell
Jeremias parents that unless they give a ransom of
P10-million within two (2) days, Jeremias would be
beheaded. Daday was told to remain in the van and
take care of Jeremias until the ransom is paid.
Virgilio then drove the van to his safehouse. What
crime or crimes, if any, did Virgilio commit? Explain.
(2009)

A: The crime committed against Jeremias is
Kidnapping and Serious Illegal Detention. The
evident criminal intent of the offender, Virgilio, is to
lock up the child to demand ransom. Whether or not
the ransom was eventually obtained will not affect
the crime committed because the demand for
ransom is not an element of the crime; it only
qualifies the penalty for the crime. As to Daday, the
nanny of the child who was told to remain in the van
and take care of the child until the ransom is paid,
the crime committed is Serious Illegal Detention
because the offender party deprived of liberty is a
female. As to Juanito, the driver of the van who was
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seriously intimidated with a gun pointed at him and
directed to stop the van and allow the gun-man to
board the same, and thereafter to drive to a
deserted place, the crime committed by Virgilio is
Grave Coercion and Slight Illegal Detention for
holding the driver before he was allowed to go.

Q: A and B, conspiring with each other, kidnapped
C and detained him. The duo then called up Cs wife
informing her that they had her husband and would
release him only if she paid a ransom in the amount
of P10,000, and that if she were to fail, they would
kill him. The next day, C, who had just recovered
from an illness had a relapse. Fearing he might die
if not treated at once by a doctor, A and B released
C during the early morning of the third day of
detention. Was the crime committed kidnapping
and serious detention or slight illegal detention?
(1997, 1991)

A: The crime committed by A and B is kidnapping
and serious illegal detention because they made a
demand for ransom and threatened to kill C if the
latters wife did not pay the same. Without the
demand for ransom, the crime could have been
slight illegal detention only.

Note: Had it been the wife who was kidnapped, even in the
absence of ransom, it will still constitute serious illegal
detention because the victim is a woman.

Q: A, B, C, D, and E were members of a gang
operating in Mindanao with Gorio as over-all
leader. Gorio assigned A, B and C to get money
from Pedro, a businessman from Agusan. As
instructed, A, B, and C, armed with guns, went to
see Pedro and demanded P100,000. When Pedro
refused, A pointed his gun at him while B hit him
with the butt of his gun. Pedro gave the amount
demanded. After the 3 left, Pedro went to the PC
Command to tell them what happened. On the
way, he met Orlando, also a businessman, who told
him that D and E, a week earlier, wrote him a letter
asking P50,000 and threatening to kill his son and
wife should he fail to give the amount. Afraid that
the two wuold make good their threat, he gave the
money when D called him that day. Orlando was
also on his way to the PC to report what happened.
What crime did D and E commit? (1987, 1988)

A: D and E committed grave threats. The reason is
that intimidation employed refers to the killings of
the wife and son of Orlando should he fail to give the
amount of P50,000 demanded in the letter which D
and E sent to him. The distinction between robbery
and grave threats when the purpose is the same,
that is, to extort money, is that in robbery, the
intimidation is actual and immediate whereas on
grave threats, the intimidation is future and
conditional.


CRIMES AGAINST PROPERTY

Q: A entered the house of another without
employing force or violence upon things. He was
seen by a maid who wanted to scream but was
prevented from doing so because A threatened her
with a gun. A then took money and other valuables
and left. Is A guilty of theft or of robbery? (2002,
1992)

A: A is liable for robbery because of the intimidation
he employed on the maid before the taking of the
money and other valuables. It is the intimidation of
person relative to the taking that qualifies the crime
as robbery, instead of simply theft. The non-
employment of force upon things is of no moment
because robbery is committed not only by employing
force upon things but also by employing violence
against or intimidation of persons.

Q: A learned two days ago that B had received
dollar bills amounting to $10,000 from his daughter
working in the United States. With the intention of
robbing B of those dollars, A entered Bs house at
midnight, armed with a knife which he used to gain
entry, and began quietly searching the drawers,
shelves, and other likely receptacle of the cash.
While doing that, B awoke, rushed out from the
bedroom, and grappled with A for the possession of
the knife which A was then holding. After stabbing
B to death, A turned over Bs pillow and found the
latters wallet underneath the pillow, which was
bulging with the dollar bills he was looking for. A
took the bills and left the house. What crime was
committed? (2007, 2005, 2003, 1998, 1996, 1995)

A: The crime committed is robbery with homicide, a
composite crime. This is because As primordial
intent is to commit a robbery and in the course of
the robbery, the killing of B took place. Both the
robbery and the killing were consummated, thus
giving rise to the special complex crime of robbery
with homicide. The primary intent being to commit
robbery, any killing on the occasion of robbery,
though not by reason thereof, is considered a
component of the crime of robbery with homicide as
a single indivisible offense.

Q: Together XA, YB and ZC planned to rob Miss OD.
They entered her house by breaking one of the
windows in her house. After taking her personal
properties and as they were abut to leave, XA
decided on impulse to rape OD. As XA was
molesting her, YB and ZC stood outside the door of
her bedroom and did nothing to prevent XA from
raping OD. What crime did XA, YB, and ZC commit?
(2004, 1999, 1997, 1996)

A: The crime committed by XA, YB, and ZC is the
composite crime of robbery with rape, a single,
indivisible offense under Art. 294 of RPC. Although
the conspiracy among the offenders was only to
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commit robbery and only XA raped OD, the other
robbers, YB and ZC were present and aware of the
rape being committed by their co-conspirator.
Having done nothing to stop XA from committing the
rape, YB and ZC thereby concurred in the
commission of the rape by their co-conspirator XA.

Q: Oscar owns and operates a gift and jewelry
shop. Pilar sold to him for P1,000 a 5 carat diamond
ring which he stole. May Oscar be liable under the
Anti Fencing Law? How can Oscar acquire immunity
from criminal prosecution for purchasing the
diamond and thus enable him to sell the same to
the general public for a profit? (1990, 1987)

A: Oscar is liable for fencing. The price is
unconscionable. This shows that he would have
known of the fact that the ring was stolen. Fencing is
the act of any person who, with intent to gain for
himself or another, shall buy, receive, sell, or dispose
in any other manner deal in any article of value
which he knows, or should be known to him to have
been derived from the proceeds of the crime of
robbery or theft. Oscar can acquire immunity by
securing a clearance/permit to sell second hand ring
from the proper INP station commander.

Note: The law refers to buy and sell of articles of value
which are the proceeds of robbery and theft and does not
apply to the proceeds of the crime of malversation as when
the items to be sold were received from an accountable
public officer.

Q: True or False: In a prosecution for fencing under
P.D. 1612, it is a complete defense for the accused
to prove that he had no knowledge that the goods
or articles found in his possession had been the
subject of robbery. (2009)

A: False. Fencing is committed if the accused should
have known that the goods or articles had been the
subject of theft or robbery. Mere possession of the
stolen goods gives rise to prima facie presumption of
fencing.

Q: Estafa (2007, 2005, 1998, 1996, 1995, 1991,
1989)

1. Divina is the owner of a 500 square meter
residential lot in Makati City covered by TCT No.
1998. As her son needed money for his trip abroad,
Divina mortgaged her lot to her neighbor Dino for
P1,000,000. Later, Divina sold the same lot to Angel
for P2,000,000. In the Deed of Sale, she expressly
stated that the property is free from any lien or
encumbrance. What crime, if any, did Divina
commit?

A: Divina committed estafa or swindling under Art.
316 par. 2 of the RPC because knowing that the real
property being sold is encumbered, she still made a
misrepresentation in the Deed of Sale that the same
is free from any lien or encumbrance. There is thus a
deceit or fraud in causing damage to the buyer of
the lot.

2. Is there such a crime as estafa through
negligence?

A: There is no such crime as estafa through
negligence. In estafa, the profit or gain must be
obtained by the accused personally, through his own
acts, and his mere negligence in allowing another to
take advantage of/or benefit from the entrusted
property cannot constitute estafa.

3. Aurelia introduced Rosa to Victoria, a dealer in
jewelry who does business in Timog, Quezon City.
Rosa, a resident of Cebu City, agreed to sell a
diamond ring and bracelet to Victoria on a
commission basis, on condition that, if these items
cannot be sold, they may be returned to Victoria
forthwith. Unable to sell the ring and bracelet, Rosa
delivered both items to Aurelia in Cebu City with
the understanding that Aurelia shall in turn, return
the items to Victoria. Aurelia dutifully returned the
bracelet to Victoria but sold the ring, kept in cash
the proceeds thereof herself and issued a check to
Victoria which bounced. Victoria sued Rosa for
estafa insisting that delivery to a third person of the
thing held in trust is not a defense in estafa. Is Rosa
criminally liable for estafa?

A: No, Rosa cannot be held liable for estafa.
Although she received the jewelry from Victoria
under an obligation to return the same or deliver the
proceeds thereof, she did not misappropriate it. In
fact, she gave them to Aurelia specifically to be
returned to Victoria. The misappropriation was done
by Aurelia and absent the showing of any conspiracy
between Aurelia and Rosa, the latter cannot be held
criminally liable for Aurelias acts. Furthermore,
Rosas negligence which may have allowed Aurelia to
misappropriate the jewelry does not make her
criminally liable for estafa.

Q: A entrusted her car for repainting at the agreed
cost of P7,800,000. When the painting job was
finished, A wanted to get the car but B refused to
deliver until payment is made. When A came back
the next day, the shop was already closed, and B
and the car were nowhere to be found. When
finally B was located, he told A that he sold the car
and applied the amount to the repainting cost and
labor. The trial court convicted B of estafa. Is the
conviction proper?

A: Conviction was correct. Estafa was committed as
B had both physical and juridical possession of the
car. Having painted the car, he acquired a lien
thereto, and therefore could exercise that right
against the whole world, including the owner.

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5. A sold a washing machine to B in credit, with the
understanding that B could return the appliance
within two weeks if, after testing the same, B
decided not to buy it. Two weeks lapsed without B
returning the appliance. A found out that B had
sold the washing machine to a third party. Is B
liable for estafa?

A: No, B is not liable for estafa because he is not just
an entrustee of the washing machine which he sold;
he is the owner thereof by virtue of the sale of the
washing machine to him. The sale being on credit, B
as buyer is only liable for the unpaid price of the
washing machine; his obligation is only a civil
obligation. There is no felonious misappropriation
that could constitute estafa.

Q: Dennis leased his apartment to Myla for P10,000
a month. Myla failed to pay the rent for 3months.
Gabriel , the son of Dennis, prepared a demand
letter falsely alleging that his father had authorized
him to collect the unpaid rentals. Myla paid the
unpaid rentals to Gabriel who kept the payment.

1. Did Gabriel commit a crime? Explain
2. Can Gabriel invoke his relationship with
Dennis to avoid criminal liability? Explain
(2008)

A:
1. Yes, Gabriel committed the crime of Estafa
under Art. 315 par. 2(a) of RPC by
fraudulent acts executed prior to or
simultaneous with the fraud or falsely
pretending to possess agency. Myla paid
the money because she relied upon the
demand letter prepared by Gabriel with the
false allegation that he was authorized to
collect rentals
2. No. Gabriel cannot invoke Art. 332 of RPC
(persons exempt from criminal liability). It is
Myla, not the father Dennis, who is the
offended party.

Q: Can an accused be charged with BP 22 and
estafa? (1990, 1987)

A: Yes. Although there can be no complex crime of
estafa and violation of BP 22 because complex
crimes refer only to felonies punished by the RPC, a
person can be liable for the two offenses. BP 22
specifically provides that liability under said act is
without prejudice to any liability for estafa under the
RPC. Damage is not an element of the offense
punished by BP 22 whereas in estafa, damage is an
element. Estafa is an act mala in se which requires
intent as an element while the offense punished by
BP 22 is an act mala prohibita where intent is not an
element. However, if the check was postdated and in
payment of a pre-existing obligation, the liability is
only for violation of BP 22 and not estafa

Q: A, a businessman, borrowed P500,000 from B, a
friend. To pay the loan, A issued a postdated check
to be presented for payment 30 days after the
transaction. Two days before the maturity date of
the check, A called up B and told him not to deposit
the check on the date stated on the face thereof, as
A had not deposited in teh drawee bank the
amount needed to cover the check. Nevertheless, B
deposietd the check in uestion and the same was
dishonored of insufficiency of funds. A failed to
settle the amount with B in spite of the latter's
demands. Is A guilty of violating BP 22? Explain
(2002, 2003, 1996, 1995, 1990)

A: Yes, A is liable for violation of BP 22. Although
knowledge by the drawer of insufficiency or lack of
funds at the time of the issuance of the check is an
essential element of the violation, the law presumes
prima facie such knowledge, unless within 5 banking
days of notice of dishonor or non-payment, the
drawer pays the holder thereof the amount due
thereon or makes arrangements for payment in full
by the drawee of such checks. A mere notice by the
drawer A to the payee B before the maturity date of
the check will not defeat the presumption of
knowledge created by the law; otherwise, the
purpose and spirit of BP 22 will be rendered useless.

Q: A asked financial support from her showbiz
friend B who accommodated her by issuing in her
favor a postdated check in the sum of P90,000.00.
Both of them knew that the check would not be
honored because Bs account had just been closed.
The two then approached trader C whom they
asked to change the check with cash, even agreeing
that the exchange be discounted at P85,000.00 with
the assurance that the check shall be funded upon
maturity. Upon Cs presentment of the check for
payment on due date, it was dishonored because
the account had already been closed. What
action/s may C commence against A and B to hold
them to account for the loss of her P85,000.00?
Explain. (2010)

A: A criminal complaint for violation of B.P. 22 may
be filed against B who drew the postdated check
against a closed account, for value paid by C, and
with knowledge at the time he issued the check that
the account thereof is already closed.

A cannot be held liable under BP 22 because he was
a mere endorser of Bs check to C who exchanged
the check with cash. BP 22 does not apply to
endorser of checks. Hence, only a civil action may be
filed by C against A to recover the P85,000. Although
a simultaneous action for estafa is authorized by law
for the issuance of a worthless check, under the
given facts, the check was discounted and thus
issued in a credit transaction for a pre existing
indebtedness. Criminal liability for estafa does not
arise when a check has been issued in payment for a
pre-existing debt.
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UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE

Q: One early evening, there was a fight between
Eddie Gutierrez and Mario Cortez. Later that
evening, at about 11 o'clock, Eddie passed by the
house of Mario carrying a plastic bag containing
gasoline, threw the bag at the house of Mario who
was inside the house watching television, and then
lit it. The front wall of the house started blazing and
some neighbors yelled and shouted. Forthwith,
Mario poured water on the burning portion of the
house. Neighbors also rushed in to help put the fire
under control before any great damage could be
inflicted and before the flames have extensively
spread. Only a portion of the house was burned.
Discuss Eddie's liability. (2000, 2004,1994)

A: Eddie is liable for destructive arson in the
consummated stage. It is destructive arson because
fire was resorted to in destroying the house of Mario
which is an inhabited house or dwelling. The arson is
consummated because the house was in fact already
burned although not totally. In arson, it is not
required that the premises be totally burned for the
crime to be consummated. It is enough that the
premises suffer destruction by burning.

Note: Burning of property even of small value is arson, not
malicious mischief because burning of property with small
value as malicious mischief has long been repealed by PD
1613, hence, there is no more legal basis to consider
burning property of small value as malicious mischief.

CRIMES AGAINST CHASTITY

Q:Sometime in December 1992, retired Lt. Col.
Agaton, celebrating the first year of his compulsory
retirement from the Armed Forces of the
Philippines, had in his company a 14 year old girl
whose parents were killed by the Mt. Pinatubo
eruption and being totally orphaned has been living
or fending for herself in the streets in Manila. They
were alone in one room in a beach resort and
stayed there for two nights. No sexual intercourse
took place between them. Before they parted,
retired Lt. Col. Agaton gave the girl P1,000 for her
services, she gladly accepted it. What crime may
the retired colonel be charged with? What possible
defenses can he interposed? (1993, 2004, 2005,
2006)

A: The retired colonel may be charged with child
abuse in violation of R.A. 7610. One of the acts of
child abuse or exploitation penalized under R.A.
7610 is that of keeping company of a minor who is
ten years or more younger than the offender in a
hotel, motel, or beerhouse, disco joint, pension
house, cabaret, sauna, or massage parlor, beach
resort and similar places, considering that Lt. Agaton
is a retiree pursuant to a compulsory retirement,
while the child he kept company within a private
room in the beach resort is only 14 years old, there
must be a difference of more than 10 years between
them. This fact plus the circumstance that Lt. Col.
Agaton stayed with the child, a girl in one room at
such beach resort for two nights, and thereafter, he
gave her P1,000 for her services constitutes the very
evil punished, among other acts in said law.

The possible defenses Lt. Col. Agaton may interpose
are that the child is related to him by affinity or by
consanguinity within the 4th degree, or by a bond
recognized in law, or local customs and traditions, or
that he was only acting in pursuance of a moral,
social, or legal duty.

CRIMES AGAINST HONOR

Q: During a seminar workshop attended by
government employees from the Bureau of
Customs and the Bureau of Internal Revenue, A, the
speaker, in the course of his lecture, lamented the
fact that a great majority of those serving in said
agencies were utterly dishonest and corrupt. The
following morning, the whole group of employees
in the two bureaus who attended the seminar, as
complainants, filed a criminal complaint against A
for uttering what the group claimed to be
defamatory statements of the lecturer. In court, A
filed a motion to quash the information, reciting
fully the above facts on the ground that no crime
was committed. If you were the judge, how would
you resolve the motion? (2003, 2002 2005)

A: I would grant the motion to quash on the ground
that the facts charged do not constitute an offense,
since there is no definite person or persons
dishonored. The crime of libel or slander is a crime
against honor such that the person or persons
dishonored must be identifiable even by innuendos;
otherwise the crime against honor is not committed.
Moreover, A was not making a malicious imputation,
but merely stating an opinion; he was delivering a
lecture with no malice at all during a seminar
workshop. Malice being inherently absent in the
utterance, the statement is not actionable as
defamatory.

Q: True or False: In the crime of libel, truth is an
absolute defense. (2009)

A: False. Art. 361 of the RPC provides that proof of
truth shall be admissible in libel cases only if the
same imputes a crime or is made against a public
officer with respect to facts related to the discharge
of their official duties, and moreover must have
been published with good motives and for justifiable
ends. Hence, truth as a defense on its own, is not
enough.

CRIMINAL NEGLIGENCE

Q: Olimpio caught a cold and was running a fever.
His doctor prescribed paracetamol. Olimpio went to
a drug store with the prescription, and the
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QUESTIONS ASKED MORE THAN ONCE IN THE BAR
QuAMTO (1987-2010)

UST ACADEMICS COMMITTEE
pharmacist sold him three (3) tablets. Upon arriving
home, he took a tablet. One hour later, he had a
seizure and died. The autopsy showed that the
tablet he had taken was not paracetamol but a pill
to which he was allergic. The pharmacist was
charged with murder. Is the charge proper? If not,
what should it be? Explain. (2008)

A: The charge was improper. The pharmacist should
be charged with criminal negligence, or reckless
imprudence resulting in homicide, because there
was no intent to kill Olimpio. The accused
inexcusably lacked precaution in failing to dispense
the proper medicine to the victim which cause his
death.