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PEOPLE vs.

LORENO & MARANTAL (JULY 9, 1984)


En Banc | Concepcion Jr., J.
B. Exempting Circumstances (RPC Art. 12) | Irresistible force or uncontrollable fear of greater
injury
FACTS
The CFI of Camarines Sur found the accused Loreno guilty of robbery (with the total amount of Php
10,305) with double rape, and there being aggravating circumstances, is sentenced to life
imprisonment. For accused Marantal, he was found guilty of robbery and sentenced an indeterminate
penalty of prison correccional to minimum of prison mayor, there being aggravating circumstance.
ANTECEDENT FACTS
Jan. 7, 1978. Elias was at his house along with his daughters Monica (14), Cristina (22, married),
Rachel (4 mos.) wife Beata, sons Mario (11) and Nilo (13), and farm helper Francisco.
While Francisco was at the balcony, he saw four men with flashlights approaching. He then heard one
of them calling Elias that a he has a letter from the chief hepe. He then called Elias, who went out to the
balcony where a man in dark sweater (DS) handed him the letter. Because it was too dark for the letter
to be read, Elias invited the man inside the sala. Once inside, he called Monica to fetch his reading
glasses and subsequently, read the letter: "Kami mga NPA." Monica, scared (shitless), ran to her
mother. Cristina attempted to get a bolo from the kitchen but was held back by the DS guy and
threatened her no to make any ruckus. When Elias went to the kitchen to see the commotion, a gun
was pointed at his back by the DS guy who ordered everyone inside to be on the floor.
Meanwhile, another man in a red shirt (RS), who stayed with Francisco in the balcony, asked Mario for
a glass of water. Mario did not obey so Francisco himself went inside to get a glass, only to be followed
by the RS guy. When he reached the sala, a gun was pointed at his back and a knife at his neck.
Francisco then recognized RS guy as Loreno -- who was also recognized by Monica and Cristina who
were lying flat on their stomachs on the floor. Marantal (recognized by Francisco) stayed as lookout
outside the house.
DS guy then instructed Loreno to tie all their victims on the floor (hands behind backs) which he
complied. DS guy then got a hold of Monica and dragged her to a room where she was asked where her
piggy bank is. When she said there was none, he then forcibly removed her pants. She screamed for
help to her parents, only to be boxed. Despite the struggle, he managed to remove her panties and
successfully had sex with her. After this, he dragged Monica back to the sala and proceeded to do the
same to Cristina
While of this was happening, the other men then proceeded to ransack the house and found and took a
lot of valuables. Thereafter, Loreno entered the room where Cristina was lying on the floor and
proceeded to kiss and touch her vagina. Suddenly, he was called to hurry up because someone was
approaching the house. When he went back, DS guy warned everyone not to tell anyone, got their
valuables, and left.
They managed to untie themselves eventually and after positively affirming the identities of their
malefactors, along with Elias finding out the sexual abuse his daughters suffered, filed a report against
the robbery-rape incident. After substantial examination to his daughters and initial investigation, the
accused were detained, charged, and found guilty. Accused are before the SC claiming that they acted
under the compulsion of an irresistible force and/or under the impulse of uncontrollable fear of equal
or greater injury. Marantal admitted that they were in the house of Elias Monge on the night of January
7, 1978, but they were only forced by a man wearing black sweater and his five companions who
claimed to be members of the New People's Army (NPA), operating in the locality, with the threat that
if they did not obey, appellants and their families would be killed.
ISSUES

Whether or not the act was done under compulsion of an irresistible force/uncontrollable fear
of equal or greater injury. NO.
Marantal, who was standing at the gate of the house below, must have heard the shouts of Monica
Monge for help and must have known by then that Monica Monge was being abused by his two
companions who earlier went up the house. As a "lookout" or guard, Marantal gave his companions
effective means and encouragement to commit the crimes of robbery and rape. There was no showing
that he raised a voice of protest or did an act to prevent the commission of the crimes.
All these demonstrated the voluntary participation and the conspiracy of the appellants. The foregoing
acts, though separately performed from those of their unidentified companions, clearly showed their
community of interest and concert of criminal design with their unidentified companions which
constituted conspiracy without the need of direct proof of the conspiracy itself.
Conspiracy may be inferred and proven by the acts of the accused themselves and when said acts point
to joint purpose and concert of action and community of interest, which unity of purpose and concert
of action serve to establish the existence of conspiracy, and the degree of actual participation petition
by each of the conspirators is immaterial. Conspiracy having been establish, all the conspirators are
liable as co-penpals regardless of the extent and character of their participation because in
contemplation of law, the act of one is the act of all.