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Katz v. United States, 389 U.S. 347 (1967)
The warrantless wiretapping of a public pay phone violates the unreasonable search and
seizure protections of the Fourth Amendment.



The petitioner, Charles Katz, was charged with conducting illegal
gambling operations across state lines in violation of federal law. In
order to collect evidence against Katz, federal agents placed a
warrantless wiretap on the public phone booth that he used to conduct
these operations. The agents listened only to Katz's conversations, and
only to the parts of his conversations dealing with illegal gambling
In the case of Olmstead v. United States (1928), the Supreme Court
held that the warrantless wiretapping of phone lines did not constitute an
unreasonable search under the Fourth Amendment. According to the
Court, physical intrusion (a trespass) into a given area, and not mere
voice amplification (the normal result of a wiretap), is required for an
action to constitute a Fourth Amendment search. This is known as the
"trespass doctrine." Partly in response to this decision, Congress
passed the Federal Communications Act of 1933. This Act required,
among other things, federal authorities to obtain a warrant before
wiretapping private phone lines. In the case of Silverman v. United
States (1961), the Supreme Court refined the Olmstead trespass
doctrine by holding that an unreasonable search occurs only if a
"constitutionally protected area" has been intruded upon.
At his trial, Katz sought to exclude any evidence connected with these
wiretaps, arguing that the warrantless wiretapping of a public phone
booth constitutes an unreasonable search of a "constitutionally
protected area" in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The federal
agents countered by saying that a public phone booth was not a
"constitutionally protected area," therefore, they could place a wiretap on
it without a warrant.
Does the warrantless wiretapping of a public phone booth violate the
unreasonable search and seizure clause of the Fourth Amendment to
the United States Constitution?
By a 7-1 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed with Katz and held that
placing of a warrantless wiretap on a public phone booth constitutes an
unreasonable search in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The majority
opinion, written by Justice Potter Stewart, however, did not address the
case from the perspective of a "constitutionally protected area." In
essence, the majority argued that both sides in the case were wrong to
think that the permissibility of a warrantless wiretap depended upon the
area being placed under surveillance. "For the Fourth Amendment
protects people, not places. What a person knowingly exposes to the
public, even in his own home or office, is not a subject of Fourth
Amendment protection . . . . But what he seeks to preserve as private
even in an area accessible to the public, may be constitutionally
protected," the Court stated.
Building upon this reasoning, the Court held that it was the duty of the
Judiciary to review petitions for warrants in instances in which persons
may be engaging in conduct that they wish to keep secret, even if it
were done in a public place. The Court held that, in the absence of a


judicially authorized search warrant, the wiretaps of the public phone
booth used by Katz were illegal. Therefore, the evidence against him
gathered from his conversations should be suppressed.
Justice John Marshall Harlan's Concurrence: Test for Constitutionally
Protected Searches
Although he agreed with the majority opinion of the Court, Justice
Harlan went further to provide a test for what is a constitutionally
protected search. He said it was necessary to clarify when private
actions, conducted in a public place, may be constitutionally protected.
Expanding upon the general principles enunciated by the majority
opinion, Justice Harlan proposed the following two-pronged test to
address this issue: "My understanding of the rule that has emerged from
prior judicial decisions is that there is a twofold requirement, first that a
person have exhibited an actual (subjective) expectation of privacy; and
second, that the expectation be one that society is prepared to
recognize as 'reasonable.'"
Both the Supreme Court and the lower federal courts have looked to this
two-pronged test, and not the majority holding per se, to determine
when private actions in public places may be constitutionally protected.
In essence, this concurrence has come to be seen as the main point of
the Katz decision, and it is the test that, typically, has been used when
deciding upon the constitutionality of warrantless wiretaps.

Brief Fact Summary. The petitioner, Katz (the “petitioner”), was convicted of transmitting
wagering information over telephone lines in violation of federal law. The government had
entered into evidence the petitioner’s end of telephone conversations that the government had
obtained by placing a listening device to the phone booth that the petitioner used. The Court of
Appeals rejected the petitioner’s contention that the evidence should be suppressed.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. The protection of the Fourth Amendment of the United States
Constitution (”Constitution”), against unreasonable searches and seizures, follows the person
and not the place.
Facts. The petitioner used a public telephone booth to transmit wagering information from Los
Angeles to Boston and Miami in violation of federal law. After extensive surveillance, the FBI
placed a listening device to the top of the telephone booth and recorded the petitioner’s end of
the telephone conversations which was then used as evidence against him at his trial. The
petitioner moved to have the evidence suppressed under the Fourth Amendment of the
Constitution, and that motion was denied. The Court of Appeals rejected the contention that the
evidence is inadmissible. Certiorari was granted.
Issue. Whether the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution protects telephone conversations
conducted in a phone booth and secretly recorded from introduction as evidence against a
Held. Justice Potter Stewart filed the majority opinion. The petitioner strenuously asserted that
the phone booth was a constitutionally protected area. However, the Fourth Amendment protects
persons and not places from unreasonable intrusion. Even in a public place, a person may have
a reasonable expectation of privacy in his person. Although the petitioner did not seek to hide his
self from public view when he entered the telephone booth, he did seek to keep out the uninvited
ear. He did not relinquish his right to do so simply because he went to a place where he could be

Justice John Harlan (”J. GORGONIA MACARAEG. ROSELA CONDE. be applied to eavesdropped evidence of conversations. to protect privacy. BONIFACIA ANTIVO. all evidence obtained is inadmissible. J. pays the toll. that the expectation be one that society is prepared to recognize as reasonable. MILAGROS GONZALES. JOSEFINA CABRERA. it is clear that the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution protects persons and not areas from unreasonable searches and seizures. Having no specific target house in mind.. By clever wording. conversations out in the open public would not be protected against being overheard as the expectation of privacy would not be reasonable.’ These arrests are all conducted without any warrants of arrest duly issued by a judge. VIOLETA SEVILLA. While the examination of the bodies of the men are being conducted by the raiders. GEN. NATURE: Petition for Prohibition with Preliminary Injunction PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND: Supreme Court: Original Petition for Prohibition with Preliminary Injunction FACTS: The forty one (41) petitioners. First. The Government’s activities in electron ically listening to and recording the petitioner’s telephone conversations constituted a search and seizure under the Fourth Amendment and absent a search warrant predicated upon sufficient probable cause. Discussion. To support such claim. PETITIONERS: EDDIE GUAZON. There is a twofold requirement for what protection is afforded to those people. CRESTITA LICUP. 7. LAUREANA JOAQUIN. ERLINDA RESTORAN. RAFAEL VILLABRILLE. MA. 3. and then ordering the residents within to come out of their respective residences. the following acts were committed: 1. The two-part test for this protection is introduced by J. FRANCISCO HORTILLANO. not places. kicking their doors open (destroying some in the process). 4. CONRADA HOBALANE. Dissent. BRIG. SOSIMA COSTO. ESTELITA BILLONES.R. and COL. ALFREDO LIM. ROSALINA DOMINGO. in the dead of the night or early morning hours. Black observed that eavesdropping was an ancient practice that the Framers were certainly aware of when they drafted the United States Constitution (”Constitution”). ALEXANDER AGUIRRE. Men were ordered to strip down to their briefs for the police to examine their tattoo marks. second. Jr. The petitioners claim that in all these drives. ERIBERTO MATEO. shouting. Most of the policemen are in their civilian clothes and without nameplates or identification cards. RECHILDA SABALZA. These raiders rudely rouse residents from their sleep by banging on the walls and windows of their homes. Manila were unconstitutional. De Villa G. Most of them are in civilian clothes and without nameplates or identification cards. Had they wished to prohibit this activity under the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution they would have added such language that would have effectively done so. The residents were at the point of high-powered guns and herded like cows. many residents have complained that the raiders ransack their homes. J. SOLIDAD ABURDO. The residents at the point of high-powered guns are herded like cows. walls are destroyed. ceilings are damaged in the raiders’ illegal effort to ‘fish’ for incriminating evidence. the Supreme Court finds it plausible to argue that language aimed specifically at searches and seizures of things that can be searched and seized may. 2. 6. In many instances.seen. A person who enters into a telephone booth may expect the protection of the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution as he assumes that the words he utters into the telephone will not be broadcast to the world. police and military units without any search warrant or warrant of arrest cordon an area of more than one residence and sometimes whole barangay or areas of barangay in Metro Manila. EDITHA MAAMO. GEN. ALEXANDER LABADO. the men are ordered to strip down to their briefs and examined for tattoo marks and other imagined marks. The critical fact in this case is that a person who enters a telephone booth shuts the door behind him. Harlan. Once this is acknowledged. Justice Hugo Black (”J. RAMON MONTANO. the person must have exhibited an actual expectation of privacy and. ESTRELITA ESTARES. PATRIA VALLES. ARESTIO YANGA. LYDIA ELA. claiming to represent “the citizens of Metro Manila who have similar interests and are so numerous that it is impracticable to bring them all before th[e] Court. second. 2. QUERUBIN BILLONES. RENATO DE VILLA. they claim that the “saturation drive” or “aerial target zoning” that were conducted in Tondo. they specifically alleged that there is no specific target house to be search and that there is no search warrant or warrant of arrest served. On the other hand. WYNEFREDO REYES. nor under the conditions that will Guanzon v. Black”) filed a dissenting opinion. BRIG. MELANIO GAROFIL. The residents were rudely roused from their sleep by banging on the walls and windows of their houses. JOSEFINA ALDIANO. GEN. ANATALIA PESIMO. 80508 30 January 1990 PONENTE: Gutierrez. ROSA MARTIN and JAIME BONGAT RESPONDENTS: MAJ. In several instances. LOSENDO GARBO. VIRGINIA LORESTO. some of the members of the raiding team force their way into each and every house within the cordoned off area and then proceed to conduct search of the said houses without civilian witnesses from the neighborhood. Harlan”) filed a dissenting opinion. JESUS GARCIA . BRIG. that a person has exhibited an actual expectation of privacy and. YOLANDA DACUNES. Some victims of these illegal operations have complained with increasing frequency that their money and valuables have disappeared after the said operations. VERIDIAN FLORA. 5. PARTIES: 1. that expectation must be reasonable. ELENIETA BANOSA. ANDREW GO. The Fourth Amendment of the Constitution provides constitutional protection to individuals and not to particular places. No. In their petition. All men and some women who respond to these illegal and unwelcome intrusions are arrested on the spot and hauled off to waiting vehicles that take them to detention centers where they are interrogated and ‘verified.” filed a petition for prohibition with preliminary injunction to prohibit the military and police officers from conducting “Aerial Target Zonings” or “Saturation Drives” in Metro Manila. ROSALINA VILLARDA. ERLINDA LEE. First. and is surely entitled to assume that his conversation is not being intercepted. The Fourth Amendment of the Constitution protects persons. tossing about the residents’ belongings without total regard for their value. GEN. ROSARIO SESPENE. Concurrence.

The aerial target zoning were intended to flush out subversives and criminal elements coddled by the communities were the said drives were conducted. The Supreme Court likewise forwarded to the Commission on Human Rights. PERTINENT ISSUES: 1. Many have also reported incidents of on-the-spot beatings. No permanent relief can be given – Under the circumstances of this taxpayers’ suit.” as long as the Court is convinced that the event actually happened. Duty of the court to stop the transgression and encroachment upon the rights of the individual – Where a violation of human rights specifically guaranteed by the Constitution is involved. No. It is basically one for the executive departments and for trial courts. Anarchy may reign if the military and the police decide to sit down in their offices because all concerted drives where a show of force is present are totally prohibited. no permanent relief can be given at this time. (Rollo. round up suspected rebels and otherwise quell the mutiny or rebellion without having to secure search warrants and without violating the Bill of Rights. there is no erring soldier or policeman whom we can order prosecuted. pp. and Pasay City where the petitioners may present evidence supporting their allegations and where specific erring parties may be pinpointed and prosecuted. clear policy guidelines on the behavior of soldiers and policemen must not only be evolved. it is the duty of the court to stop the transgression and state where even the awesome power of the state may not encroach upon the rights of the individual. In the meantime and in the face of a prima facie showing that some abuses were probably committed and could be committed during future police actions. some arrested persons are released without charge after a few days of arbitrary detention. In other instances. the military. Whether or not the saturation drives performed by respondents involved acts which violated human rights. SUPREME COURT RULINGS: 1. The problem is appropriate for the Commission on Human Rights. Those who are detained for further ‘verification’ by the raiders are subjected to mental and physical torture to extract confessions and tactical information. In some instances. Whether or not the original action for prohibition is the proper remedy. 2. The rules of constitutional litigation have been evolved for an orderly procedure in the vindication of rights. They should be followed. Where not one victim complains and not one violator is properly charged. 10. ON SATURATION DRIVES AND VIOLATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS The Court believes it highly probable that some violations were actually committed. 2. A high level conference should bring together the heads of the Department of Justice. A method of pinpointing human rights abuses and identifying violators is necessary. the respondents. 2 -4) In their defense. being undertaken without some undisciplined soldiers and policemen committing certain abuses. A blanket prohibition such as that sought by the petitioners would limit all police actions to one-onone confrontations where search warrants and warrants of arrests against specific individuals are easily procured. arrested persons are released after the expiration of the period wherein they can be legally detained without any charge at all. They said that they have intelligently and carefully planned months ahead for the actual operation and that local and foreign media joined the operation to witness and record such event. the Secretary of Justice. Further investigation of the petitioners’ charges and a hard look by administration officials at the policy implications of the prayed for blanket prohibition are also warranted. represented by the Solicitor General. we have to temporarily restrain the alleged banging on walls. the Secretary of National Defense. If our policy-makers sustain the contention of the military and the police that occasional saturation drives are essential to maintain the stability of government and to insure peace and order. 8. When saturation drives may be conducted without having to secure search warrants and without violating the Bill of Rights – Where there is large scale mutiny or actual rebellion. It is the duty of the court to take remedial action even in cases such as the present petition where the petitioners do not complain they were victims of the police actions. maulings and maltreatment. and the police to the Supreme Court as if we are the repository of all remedies for all evils. including the essential and legitimate ones. 11. and where the prayer is a general one to stop all police “saturation drives.” We cannot imagine police actions of the magnitude described in the petitions and admitted by the respondents. where no names of any of the thousands of alleged victims are given. enter affected residences or buildings.authorize warrantless arrest. We see nothing wrong in police making their presence visibly felt in troubled areas. 2. the problem is not initially for the Supreme Court. Respondents contend that the Constitution grants to government the power to seek and cripple subversive movements for the maintenance of peace in the state. Police cannot respond to riots or violent demonstrations if they do not move in sufficient numbers. Well-meaning citizens with only second-hand knowledge of the events cannot keep on indiscriminately tossing problems of the executive. Some hooded men are used to fingerpoint suspected subversives. Department of National Defense and the operating heads of affected agencies and institutions to devise procedures for the prevention of abuses. In the absence of clear facts ascertained through an orderly procedure. they should also be enforced. A show of force is sometimes necessary as long as the rights of people are protected and not violated. Malabon. However. 9. the violation of residences even if these are humble shanties of squatters. This is so inspite of the alleged pleas of barangay officials for the thousands of residents “to submit themselves voluntarily for character and personal verification. the police or military may go out in force to the combat areas. the herding of half-naked men to assembly areas for examination of tattoo marks. The raiders almost always brandish their weapons and point them at the residents during these illegal operations. the remedy is not to stop all police actions. ON VIOLATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND REMEDY The present petition is an improper remedy – The remedy is not an original action for prohibition brought through a taxpayers’ suit. alleged that the accusations of the petitioners were “total lies”. and the Commanding General of the Philippine Constabulary – Integrated National Police for the drawing up and enforcement of clear . DISPOSITIVE: The Supreme Court remanded the petition to the Regional Trial Courts of Manila. and the other alleged acts which are shocking to the conscience. ANSWER: 1. Yes. the kicking in of doors.

All printing equipment. Chief of Staff. paraphernalia. we take cognizance of this petition in view of the seriousness and urgency of the constitutional issues raised not to mention the public interest generated by the search of the “We Forum” offices. subalterns. the business premises of the “Metropolitan Mail” and “We Forum” newspapers were searched. THE CHIEF. Jr. were seized. BAYANI SORIANO and J. 2. Quezon Avenue. which was televised in Channel 7 and widely publicized in all metropolitan dailies. before impugning the validity of the warrants before this Court. RESPONDENTS: THE CHIEF OF STAFF. Quezon City. THE JUDGE ADVOCATE GENERAL. books. publication and distribution of the said newspapers. and subdue terrorist activities. and he can do . entitled People v. J. Light-a-Fire Movement and April 6 Movement. prohibition and mandamus with preliminary mandatory and prohibitory injunction was filed after 6 months following the raid to question the validity of said search warrants. Motor vehicles used in the distribution/circulation of the “WE FORUM” and other subversive materials and propaganda. and other publication to promote the objectives and purposes of the subversive organizationknown as Movement for Free Philippines. PRESIDENTIAL SECURITY COMMAND. petitioners. It is always in the power of the Supreme Court to suspend its rules or to except a particular case from its operation. office and printing machines. the Supreme Court enjoined the acts violative of human rights alleged by petitioners as committed during the police actions until such time as permanent rules to govern such rules are promulgated. Quezon City. dictaphone and the like used and/or connected in the printing of the “WE FORUM” newspaper and any and all documents communication. Prohibition.R. and Mandamus with Prayer for Issuance of Writs of Preliminary Mandatory and Prohibitory Injunction PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND: Supreme Court: Original Petition filed with the Supreme Court 1. letters and facsimile of prints related to the “WE FORUM” newspaper. RMS Building. tape recorders. PHILIPPINE CONSTABULARY. pamphlets. and 784 Units C & D. et al. Jr. Whether or not the two (2) search warrants were validly issued. PETITIONERS: JOSE BURGOS. issued two (2) search warrants where the premises at 19 Road 3. paper. books and other written literature allegedly possessed by Jose Burgos. 3] A delivery truck with Plate No. 3. flush out criminal elements. But this procedural flaw notwithstanding. In the meantime. However the Court took cognizance of the petition in view of the seriousness and urgency of the constitutional issues raised not to mention the public interest generated by the search of the “We Forum” offices. business addresses of the “Metropolitan Mail” and “We Forum” newspapers. Thereafter. leaflets. 2] DATSUN pick-up colored white with Plate No. Q. Q022782 of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. The search warrants describe the articles sought to be seized in this wise: 1. the City Fiscal of Quezon City. Pursuant to the said search warrants. THE CHIEF LEGAL OFFICER. tables. These documents lawfully belong to petitioner Jose Burgos. PARTIES: 1. communications/recording equipment. 2. 2. No. 5] TOYOTA Hi-Lux. 2. had used and marked as evidence some of the seized documents in Criminal Case No. colored white with Plate No. which was televised in Channel 7 and widely publicized in all metropolitan dailies. 60 SCRA 295 [1974]). No.Paño. photo (equipment. equipment. ON VALIDITY OF SEARCH WARRANTS Use of evidence seized in an illegal search does not prevent a party from questioning its validity – Respondents also submit the theory that since petitioner Jose Burgos. 4] TOYOTA-TAMARAW. ANSWERS: 1. NKA 892. L-64261 26 December 1984 PONENTE: Escolin. AFP G. JOSE BURGOS. motor vehicles and other articles used in the printing. cabinets. publisher-editor of the “We Forum” newspaper. Judge Ernani Cruz-Paño. Jr. NBS 524. 1] Toyota-Corolla. REMEDY AGAINST ILLEGAL SEARCH The correct remedy for petitioners was to file a motion to quash the search warrants – Indeed. assistants. should have filed a motion to quash said warrants in the court that issued them (Templo v. substitute or successors from using the articles seized as evidence in Criminal Case No. Accordingly. typewriters.. No. NGV 427 with marking “Bagong Silang. Jr.. Project 6. Jose Burgos. The existence of this special circumstance justifies this Court to exercise its inherent power to suspend its rules. Whether or not the immediate recourse to the Supreme Court was proper to question the validity of the two (2) search warrants. pick-up truck with Plate No. and. A petition for certiorari. Subversive documents.guidelines to govern police actions intended to abate riots and civil disturbances. PBP 665. colored yellow with Plate No. whenever the purpos es of jus tice require it. NKV 969. the premises of both printing offices were padlocked and sealed thereby preventing the publication of the aforementioned newspapers. their representatives. ET AL. PERTINENT ISSUES: NATURE: Petition for Certiorari. and. paraphernalia. We do not follow the logic of respondents. JR.” SUPREME COURT RULINGS: 1. FACTS: On 7 December 1982. subordinates. Dela Cruz. INC.022872. SR. more particularly. he is now estopped from challenging the validity of the search warrants. respectively. as well as numerous papers.. ink. documents. ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES. Burgos v. 2. Executive Judge of the Court of First Instance of Quezon City. and to enjoin the Judge Advocate General of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). Respondents sought the dismissal of the petition on the ground that the petitioners came immediately before the Supreme Court without having previously sought the quashal of the search warrants before Judge Cruz. BURGOS MEDIA SERVICES.

the ambiguity that might have arisen by reason of the typographical error is more apparent than real. In fact. and constitutes a virtual denial of petitioners’ freedom to express themselves in print. It may or may not be owned by him.” was declared void by the U. one of the properties that may be seized is stolen property. 4200 AN ACT TO PROHIBIT AND PENALIZE WIRE TAPPING AND OTHER RELATED VIOLATIONS OF THE PRIVACY OF COMMUNICATION. “that the evidence gathered and collated by our unit clearly shows that the premises above-mentioned and the articles and things above. Mere generalization will not suffice. DISPOSITIVE: The Supreme Court held that the Search Warrants Nos. illegal organizations such as the Light-a-Fire Movement. pamphlets.” In mandating that “no warrant shall issue except upon probable cause to be determined by the judge. In Stanford v. and April 6 Movement. It would be quite absurd and illogical for respondent judge to have issued two warrants intended for one and the same place.” The seizure of articles belonging to other persons not named in the warrant does not invalidate the search warrant or the search conducted – Section 2 of Rule 126 (now Section 3 of Rule 126) of the Rules of Court provides that a search warrant may be issued for the search and seizure of (a) property subject of the offense. Gutierrez and Pedro U. In like manner. Thus. it has been held “that the executing officer’s prior knowledge as to the place intended in the warrant is relevant.whatever he pleases with them. 19 Road 3. Abadilla himself who headed the team which executed the search warrants. directions to “seize any evidence in connection with the violation of SDC 13-3703 or otherwise” have been held too general. Quezon Avenue.” General warrants are unconstitutional – Another factor which makes the search warrants under consideration constitutionally objectionable is that they are in the nature of general warrants. The closure of the business premises of the “Metropolitan Mail” and “We Forum” newspapers violates the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of the press – As heretofore stated. RMS Building. the application and/or its supporting affidavits must contain a specification. AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES. these premises were padlocked and sealed. and when he knows that the judge who issued the warrant intended the building described in the affidavit. 33). The description of the articles sought to be seized under the search warrants in question cannot be characterized differently. and it is sufficient that the person against whom the warrant is directed has control or possession of the property sought to be seized. Supreme Court for being too general. … after examination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce.S. receipts. A mere typographical error in a search warrant does not render the same invalid –The search warrant used to search the premises of the “We Forum” newspaper at 784 Units C & D. stolen property must be owned by one other than the person in whose possession it may be at the time of the search and seizure. This state of being is patently anathematic to a democratic framework where a free. REPUBLIC ACT No. the broad statement in Col. this Court ruled that “the oath required must refer to the truth of the facts within the personal knowledge of the petitioner or his witnesses. memoranda. which address appeared in the opening paragraph of the said warrant. and since it was Col. The fact that he has used them as evidence does not and cannot in any way affect the validity or invalidity of the search warrants assailed in this petition. news publications and other documents which were used and are all continuously being used as a means of committing the offense of subversion punishable under Presidential Decree 885. (b) property stolen or embezzled and other proceeds or fruits of the offense. As a consequence of the search and seizure.82[b] was applied for was 728 Units C & D. Quezon City indicated that the articles sought to be seized were allegedly kept at No. Such closure is in the nature of previous restraint or censorship abhorrent to the freedom of the press guaranteed under the fundamental law. within legal bounds. And it has also been said that the executing officer may look to the affidavit in the official court file to resolve an ambiguity in the warrant as to the place to be searched. is of no consequence. two search warrants were applied for and issued because the purpose and intent were to search two distinct premises. In Alvarez v. under Section 2(b). And when the search warrant applied for is directed against a newspaper publisher or editor in connection with the publication of subversive materials. Movement for Free Philippines. Precisely. Probable cause for issuance of a search warrant must be based on personal knowledge of the applicant or his witness – Equally insufficient as basis for the determination of probable cause is the statement contained in the joint affidavit of Alejandro M. Obviously this is the same place that respondent judge had in mind when he issued the said search warrant. 20. Necessarily. Tango. alert and even militant press is essential for the political enlightenment and growth of the citizenry. 20-82[a] and 20-82[b] are null and void and are accordingly set aside. recordings and other written instruments concerning the Communist Party in Texas. The prayer for a writ of mandatory injunction for the return of the seized articles was likewise granted and all articles seized by virtue of such warrants were ordered released to petitioners. and to promote the objective of. Court of First Instance (64 Phil. Quezon Avenue. and (c) property used or intended to be used as the means of committing an offense. therefore. This would seem to be especially true where the executing officer is the affiant on whose affidavit the warrant had issued. with the further result that the printing and publication of said newspapers were discontinued. and that portion of a search warrant which authorized the seizure of any “paraphernalia which could be used to violate Sec. as in the case at bar. stating with particularity the alleged subversive material he has published or is intending to publish. Besides. Quezon City as contained in the warrant. Quezon City. of the existence of probable cause. Ownership. The defect pointed out is obviously a typographical error. In the determination of whether a search warrant describes the premises to be searched with sufficient particularity. pictures. Mere unsubstantiated allegations or baseless conclusions of law do not constitute probable cause for issuance of a search warrant – Probable cause for a search is defined as such facts and circumstances which would lead a reasonably discreet and prudent man to believe that an offense has been committed and that the objects sought in connection with the offense are in the place sought to be searched. lists. State of Texas the search warrant which authorized the search for “books.described were used and are continuously being used for subversive activities in conspiracy with. records. Abadilla’s application that petitioner “is in possession or has in his control printing equipment and other paraphernalia. It does not require that the property to be seized should be owned by the person against whom the search warrant is directed. the addresses of the places sought to be searched were specifically set forth in the application. RMS Building. The fact is that the place for which Search Warrant No. not the individual making the affidavit and seeking the issuance of the warrant. as amended …” is a mere conclusion of law and does not satisfy the requi rements of probable cause. the premises searched were the business and printing offices of the “Metropolitan Mail” and the “We Forum newspapers. because the purpose thereof is to convince the committing magistrate. . cards. 54-197 of the Connecticut General Statutes [the statute dealing with the crime of conspiracy]” was held to be a general warrant. the Constitution requires no less than personal knowledge by the complainant or his witnesses of the facts upon which the issuance of a search warrant may be justified. and therefore invalid. Project 6.

or copies thereof. piracy. All laws inconsistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed or accordingly amended. have actually been or are being committed. or by using any other device or arrangement. and shall be accompanied by an affidavit of the peace officer granted such authority stating the number of recordings made. Neither was she about to commit one nor had she just committed a crime. At 6:30 in the evening of 14 Dec 1988. or if made. The envelope or package so deposited shall not be opened. The NARCOM agents would not have apprehended Aruta were it not for the furtive finger of the informant because. Aruta was merely crossing the street and was not acting in any manner that would engender a reasonable ground for the NARCOM agents to suspect and conclude that she was committing a crime. NARCOM officers approached her and introduced themselves as NARCOM agents. in the case of telegraphic or telephonic communications. Abello about the contents of her travelling bag. of any communication or spoken word secured either before or after the effective date of this Act in the manner prohibited by this law. and violations of Commonwealth Act No. The court referred to in this section shall be understood to mean the Court of First Instance within whose territorial jurisdiction the acts for which authority is applied for are to be executed. or record such communication or spoken word by using a device commonly known as a dictaphone or dictagraph or dictaphone or walkie-talkie or tape recorder. ISSUE: Whether or not the conducted search and seizure is constitutional. purport. effect. and. Any person who willfully or knowingly does or who shall aid. not being authorized by all the parties to any private communication or spoken word. substance. inciting to sedition. or records included in the deposit. or to furnish transcriptions thereof. permits. and (3) that there are no other means readily available for obtaining such evidence. or to the solution of. the arrest being incipiently illegal. discussions. conspiracy and proposal to commit rebellion. if the offender is an alien he shall be subject to deportation proceedings. It shall be unlawful for any person. 616. sedition. the number of tapes. be he a participant or not in the act or acts penalized in the next preceding sentence. and (4) the period of the authorization. discs. or spoken words. or causes such violation shall. permit. 1965 PEOPLE VS ARUTA Search and Seizure – Informer’s Tip In the morning of 13 Dec 1988. and inciting to sedition. the law enforcement officers received information from an informant named “Benjie” that a certain “Aling Rosa” would be leaving for Baguio City on 14 Dec 1988 and would be back in the afternoon of the same day carrying with her a large volume of marijuana. mutiny in the high seas. punishing espionage and other offenses against national security:Provided. to secretly overhear. That such written order shall only be issued or granted upon written application and the examination under oath or affirmation of the applicant and the witnesses he may produce and a showing: (1) that there are reasonable grounds to believe that any of the crimes enumerated hereinabove has been committed or is being committed or is about to be committed: Provided. or record the communications. Neither was there any semblance of any compliance with the rigid requirements of probable cause and warrantless arrests. they found dried marijuana leaves. legislative or administrative hearing or investigation. The authorization shall be effective for the period specified in the order which shall not exceed sixty (60) days from the date of issuance of the order. wire record. (2) the identity of the peace officer authorized to overhear. either verbally or in writing. Section 2. That in cases involving the offenses of rebellion. be punished by imprisonment for not less than six months or more than six years and with the accessory penalty of perpetual absolute disqualification from public office if the offender be a public official at the time of the commission of the offense. discussions. shall render it unlawful or punishable for any peace officer. provoking war and disloyalty in case of war. Consequently. to tap any wire or cable. upon conviction thereof. or to replay the same for any other person or persons. except upon order of the court. sedition. That the use of such record or any copies thereof as evidence in any civil. Section 4. as clearly illustrated by the evidence on record. conspiracy to commit sedition. intercept. any of such crimes. When they opened the same. be deposited with the court in a sealed envelope or sealed package. conspiracy to commit sedition. to any other person: Provided. conversations. there being no probable cause and the accusedappellant not having been lawfully arrested. or spoken words are to be overheard. criminal investigation or trial of offenses mentioned in section 3 hereof. unless extended or renewed by the court upon being satisfied that such extension or renewal is in the public interest. or to the prevention of. (2) that there are reasonable grounds to believe that evidence will be obtained essential to the conviction of any person for. or the existence. however. espionage. rebellion. with due notice and opportunity to be heard to the person or persons whose conversation or communications have been recorded. When asked by Lt. contents. All recordings made under court authorization shall. to knowingly possess any tape record. whether complete or partial. or cause to be done any of the acts declared to be unlawful in the preceding section or who violates the provisions of the following section or of any order issued thereunder. to execute any of the acts declared to be unlawful in the two preceding sections in cases involving the crimes of treason. there was no reason whatsoever for them to suspect that accused-appellant was committing a crime. however. shall not be covered by this prohibition. there was no legal basis for the NARCOM agents to effect a warrantless search of Aruta’s bag. quasi-judicial. except for the pointing finger of the informant. or the recordings replayed. the telegraph line or the telephone number involved and its location. or meaning of the same or any part thereof. or used in evidence. The order granted or issued shall specify: (1) the identity of the person or persons whose communications. Stated otherwise. Any communication or spoken word. conspiracy and proposal to commit rebellion. kidnapping as defined by the Revised Penal Code. Section 5. or their contents revealed. Aruta was then brought to the NARCOM office for investigation. intercepted. which shall not be granted except upon motion. It was only when the informant pointed to Aruta and identified her to the agents as the carrier of the marijuana that she was singled out as the suspect. or any other such record. who is authorized by a written order of the Court. inciting to rebellion. conversations. Section 3. and certifying that no duplicates or copies of the whole or any part thereof have been made.Section 1. . HELD: The SC ruled in favor of Aruta and has noted that some drug traffickers are being freed due to technicalities. Aruta alighted from a Victory Liner Bus carrying a travelling bag even as the informant pointed her out to the law enforcement officers. or however otherwise described: It shall also be unlawful for any person. or aids. inciting to rebellion. This Act shall take effect upon its approval. Approved: June 19. Aruta cannot be said to be committing a crime. within forty-eight hours after the expiration of the period fixed in the order. The SC could neither sanction nor tolerate as it is a clear violation of the constitutional guarantee against unreasonable search and seizure. Nothing contained in this Act. or recorded and. intercept. she gave the same to him. the dates and times covered by each recording. or to communicate the contents thereof. or any information therein contained obtained or secured by any person in violation of the preceding sections of this Act shall not be admissible in evidence in any judicial. Section 6. such authority shall be granted only upon prior proof that a rebellion or acts of sedition. that all such duplicates or copies are included in the envelope or package deposited with the court. as the case may be. disc record. (3) the offense or offenses committed or sought to be prevented.

Issues not raised below cannot be pleaded for the first time on appeal. the vehicle’s inherent mobility reduces expectation of privacy especially when its transit in public thoroughfares furnishes a highly reasonable suspicion amounting to probable cause that the occupant committed a criminal activity. and where nothing in the initial stages of the encounter serves to dispel his reasonable fear for his own or others' safety. it being not incidental to a lawful arrest. It did not. 3(2) of the Constitution. In this case however. Said neighbor then asked the policemen to let Manalili go seeing as they had not found anything illegal but Manalili was put on a cell who was brought to a fiscal later that day and was told not to say anything despite his saying that the policemen had not found mj on his person. Warrantless search incidental to a lawful arrest recognized under Section 12. 5) waiver of the accused of his rights against unreasonable searches and seizures. he is entitled for the protection of himself and others in the area to conduct a carefully limited search of the outer clothing of such persons in an attempt to discover weapons which might be used to assault him. Manalili vs CA Facts: This is a petition for certiorari seeking the reversal of CA’s decision in affirming TC’s decision on convicting Manalili of illegal possession of prohibited drug violating RA 6425. Manalili’s suspicious behavior was characteristic of drug addicts who were high. . As People vs Lacerna enumerated 5 recognized exceptions to the rule against warrantless searches and seizures: 1) search incidental to lawful arrest. 4. 4) customs search. where in the course of investigating this behavior he identified himself as a policeman and makes reasonable inquiries. 2 W/N Manalili’s actions constituted a waiver of his rights. Ruling: I I. Customs search. the man held out his wallet and allowed Espiritu to examine it. A valid waiver of right against unreasonable searches and seizures require the concurrence of these requisites: 1) the right to be waived existed. let the driver go but brought Manalili along to the police station. (c) the evidence must be immediately apparent. pursuant to Article III. Stop and Frisk. and any weapon seized may properly be introduced in evidence against the person from whom they were taken. therefore. the policemen bodily searched both Manalili and the driver and upon finding nothing illegal on their persons. and 3) he/she had actual intention to relinquish the right. saw a man who appeared to be high on drugs and introduced themselves as policemen. 2. Issues: 1 W/N evidence seized during a stop-and-frisk is admissible. The man was brought to the Anti-Narcotics Unit and turned out to be Manalili. Consented warrantless search. and 7. 2) the person waiving it had knowledge. Such a search is a reasonable search under the Fourth Amendment. 2) search of moving vehicles. SG’s contention that Manalili effectively waived the inadmissibility of the evidence illegally obtained when he failed to raise this issue or object during trial. 6. when they asked what the man was holding in his hand. at the earliest opportunity possible. From Espiritu’s experience as a member of the Anti-Narcotics Unit of Caloocan City Police. Manalili while on the way to the station saw a neighbor whom he signaled to follow them and when he was again searched in the station. Exigent and Emergency logically follows that the subsequent search was similarly illegal. who found what he suspected to be crushed mj leaves. Manalili’s version of the story was that early afternoon he was riding in a tricycle when 3 policemen stopped the tricycle and informed them of the suspected possession of mj. however abandon the rule that the police must. The constitutional guarantee against unreasonable search and seizure must perforce operate in favor of accused-appellant. 3) seizure in plain view. The substance found on Manalili’s wallet was sent to NBI Foresic Chemistry Section and was confirmed as mj. Highly regulated by the government. must be rejected. Seizure of evidence in “plain view. whenever practicable. (b) the evidence was inadvertently discovered by the police who had the right to be where they are. Sec. and (d) “plain view” justified mere seizure of evidence without further search. Said man avoided them and tried to resist. 3 W/N the evidence is sufficient to prove Manalili’s guilt. 3. it is deemed that Manalili has waived such right for failure to raise its violation before the trial court. he was asked to strip his pants where they found nothing illegal.” the elements of which are: (a) a prior valid intrusion based on the valid warrantless arrest in which the police are legally present in the pursuit of their official duties. As such. obtain advance judicial approval of searches and seizures through the warrant procedure. excused only by exigent circumstances. a stop-and-frisk was defined as the vernacular designation of the right of a police officer to stop a citizen on the street. II. Lumabas and driver Enriquez conducted surveillance along the front of Kalookan Cemetery based on the information that drug addicts were roaming around in the area. interrogate him and pat him for weapons: W)here a police officer observes an unusual conduct which leads him reasonably to conclude in light of his experience that criminal activity may be afoot and that the persons with whom he is dealing may be armed and presently dangerous. In Terry vs Ohio. NOTES: When is a warrantless search allowed? 1. Search of a moving vehicle. 5. the articles seized could not be used as evidence against accused-appellant for these are “fruits of a poisoned tree” and. Rule 126 of the Rules of Court 8 and by prevailing jurisprudence. Said tricycle driver and neighbor testified on court as to how the 2 searches yielded nothing illegal on Manalili’s person. Police operatives Espiritu.

WHEREFORE. commanding him to search for personal property and bring it before the court. statutory or reglementary. The court wherein the criminal case is pending shall have primary jurisdiction to issue search warrants necessitated by and for purposes of said case. Petitioners presented a Motion for Consolidation. Where no motion to quash the search warrant was filed in or resolved by the issuing court. it held that the trial court’s assessment of the credibility of the witnesses particularly when affirmed by CA is accorded great weight and respect as it had opportunity to observe their demeanor and deportment as they testified before it. a motion to quash shall consequently be governed by the omnibus motion rule. such court shall be considered as vested with primary jurisdiction to act on applications for search warrants incident to the criminal case. The elements of illegal possession of mj are: a) the accused is in possession of an item or object which is identified to be a prohibited drug. Where the issue of which court will try the case shall have been resolved. drastic in its nature. the interested party may move in the court where the criminal case is pending for the suppression as evidence of the personal property seized under the warrant if the same is offered therein for said purpose. The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution (”Constitution”) requires no more than a finding by an issuing magistrate that there is a “substantial basis” that a search will uncover evidence of wrongdoing. subpoena. ELIZALDE MALALOAN and MARLON LUAREZ vs. provided. no legal provision. on the foregoing premises. Moreover. existent or known during the proceedings for the quashal of the warrant may be raised in the hearing of the motion to suppress. not a criminal action. 410 (1969). 4. Firearms. Facts. weapons and other contraband in the defendants’ home and automobile. 393 U. Since two separate courts with different participations are involved in this situation. plans to traffic drugs from Florida to Illinois. ILLINOIS VS GATES Brief Fact Summary. however. It is clear. However. the police found drugs. a motion to quash the same may be filed in and shall be resolved by said court. 3. An application for a search warrant may be filed with another court only under extreme and compelling circumstances that the applicant must prove to the satisfaction of the latter court which may or may not give due course to the application depending on the validity of the justification offered for not filing the same in the court with primary jurisdiction thereover. It is a special and peculiar remedy. said warrant does not become functus officio but is enforceable indefinitely until the same is enforced or recalled. police obtained a search warrant and found drugs. Quashal of Search Warrant and For the Suppression of All Illegally Acquired Evidence. A judicial process is defined as a writ. When the latter court issues the search warrant. Upon execution of the warrant.COURT OF APPEALS FACTS: Lt. therefore. such behavior clearly shows that he knew he was holding mj and it was prohibited by law. The police received a highly detailed anonymous tip that the defendants were trafficking drugs. The search warrant was sought for in connection with an alleged violation of P. The police received an anonymous letter outlining specific details about the Defendants. On the basis of the tip and the defendants’ corroborating activities. The police. weapons and other contraband in the defendants’ automobile and home. otherwise they shall be deemed waived. all personal property seized under the warrant shall forthwith be transmitted by it to the court wherein the criminal case is pending. Where an anonymous tip is corroborated with actual police findings. Manalili’s contention that the charge was trumped up to extort money and testimonies of the arresting officers were inconsistent. thereafter.III. Salboro of the CAPCOM filed with the RTC of Kalookan City an application for search warrant. and made necessary because of a public necessity. United States. merely constitutes process. expressly or impliedly provides a jurisdictional or territorial limit on its area of enforceability. if one has already been instituted. A search warrant is defined in our jurisdiction as an order in writing issued in the name of the People of the Philippines signed by a judge and directed to a peace officer. a “totality of the circumstances” approach is an appropriate way of determining probable cause instead of using the two-pronged test of “veracity/reliability” and “basis of knowledge” from Spinelli v. observed the defendants conducting specific activities which were outlined in the tip. . Gates and others (the “defendants”). Where the court which issued the search warrant denies the motion to quash the same and is not otherwise prevented from further proceeding thereon. or in anticipation thereof. All grounds and objections then available. 5. 5 A search warrant is in the nature of a criminal process akin to a writ of discovery. These guidelines shall likewise be observed where the same criminal offense is charged in different informations or complaints and filed in two or more courts with concurrent original jurisdiction over the criminal action. in our jurisdiction. warrant. Considering that he was high and tried to avoid and resist. When the details were corroborated by the defendants’ actions. The following are the guidelines when there are possible conflicts of jurisdiction where the criminal case is pending in one court and the search warrant is issued by another court for the seizure of personal property intended to be used as evidence in said criminal case: 1. 2. Absalon V. and although within ten days from the delivery of the warrant of arrest for execution a return thereon must be made to the issuing judge. following up on the tip. the court denied the quashal of the search warrant and the validity of which warrant was upheld invoking paragraph 3(b) of the Interim Rules and Guidelines which provides that search warrants can be served not only within the territorial jurisdiction of the issuing court but anywhere in the judicial region of the issuing court. In order to prevent forum shopping. The resolution of the court on the motion to suppress shall likewise be subject to any proper remedy in the appropriate higher court.S. that objections not available. b) such possession is not authorized by law. with the necessary safeguards and documentation therefore. no period is provided for the enforceability of warrants of arrest. a motion to quash a search warrant and a motion to suppress evidence are alternative and not cumulative remedies. The substance found on Manalili’s wallet was identified as mj which was prohibited and knowingly without authority. that a search warrant is merely a judicial process designed by the Rules to respond only to an incident in the main case. explosive materials and subversive documents were seized and taken during the search. without prejudice to any proper recourse to the appropriate higher court by the party aggrieved by the resolution of the issuing court. existent or known shall be raised in the original or subsequent proceedings for the quashal of the warrant. 1866 (Illegal Possession of Firearms and Ammunitions). such as a warrant of arrest or a search warrant. ISSUE: W/N a court may take cognizance of an application for a search warrant in connection with an offense committed outside its territorial boundary and. the instant petition is DENIED. Since a search warrant is a judicial process. Synopsis of Rule of Law.D. the police obtained a search warrant. and c) the accused freely and consciously possessed the said drug. issue the warrant to conduct a search on a place outside the court's supposed territorial jurisdiction HELD: A warrant. or other formal writing issued by authority of law.

without special pronouncement as to costs. upon careful investigation of the facts. the warrant avers that they are actually being used for such purpose.. against the internal revenue agent or agents who obtained and executed the warrant in question. It was not asked that the things belonging to Atty. documents and papers belonging to his clients. the informant’s “credibility/reliability” was undermined and therefore the warrant should not have been issued. . the authorities seized. Inc. May a magistrate issue a valid warrant on the basis of an anonymous tip where there is no indicia of the informer’s “basis of knowledge” if the information contained in the tip is corroborated with police findings? Held. “Basis of knowledge” cannot fully be supported solely on the basis that some factual assertions corroborate with actual police findings. For all the foregoing reasons. the Fourth Amendment is not violated.“Credibility/reliability” and “basis of knowledge” of an informant are very relevant in determining the value of a tip. To sufficiently uphold Fourth Amendment rights. plaintiff-appellee. The main focus should be whether there is an inference. taking into consideration the provisions of the law and of the Constitution relative thereto? 2. These elements alone do not form the entire basis of inquiry in deciding whether probable cause exists. Does the art metal filing cabinet seized by the agents of the Bureau of Internal Revenue belong to Santiago Sy Juco or to Teopisto B. So long as the magistrate had a substantial basis for concluding a search would uncover evidence of wrongdoing. Aguilar and the elaboration in Spinelli sets forth the analysis magistrates should follow on determinations of probable cause. in accordance with the provisions of article 129 of the Revised Penal Code. In the process. notwithstanding the lack of such allegation. Even if the factual findings by police were only corroborated by innocuous behavior. Is the search warrant in question valid or not. together with the key thereof seized by the internal revenue agent by virtue of the judicial warrant in question. it assumes that the entire building is occupied by Santiago Sy Juco. among others. Remo. which is hereby declared null and void. if he deems it justified. vs. Remo to be his and contained some letters. Remo? Ruling: The search and seizure was not valid. Also. when the only ground upon which such assumption is based is the BIR agent's statement which is mere hearsay (coming from an informant) and when in fact part thereof was occupied by Atty. Concurrence. a valid warrant could still have been issued because the defendants’ actions were suspicious. were seized.. based upon the suspects’ actions. Pursuant to a search warrant issued. be immediately returned unopened to the appellant. Dissent. the appealed judgment is reversed. Also. Facts: The crime alleged is fraud of revenue against the Government. Police cannot use findings of an illegal search to substantiate a previously issued warrant. an art metal filing cabinet claimed by Atty. the officers searched the building occupied by Santiago Sy Juco. books belonging to Salakam Lumber Co. Since some of the anonymous tips were not corroborated and actually proved false. and it is ordered that the art metal filing cabinet. Discussion. and that a copy of this decision be sent to the Solicitor-General for him to take action. and finding that the errors assigned by the appellant are very well founded. SANTIAGO SY JUCO. the elements of the informant’s “credibility/reliability” and “basis of knowledge” are to be used as guides when considering the “totality of the circumstances” and are not to be exclusive requirements applied in every case. Issue: 1. Remo and to others also be searched and seized. documents or records referred to therein are being used or are intended to be used in the commission of fraud against the Government and. that the informant is credible and the information was obtained in a reliable manner. It is not stated in the affidavit that the books. magistrates must look at both the “credibility/reliability” and “basis of knowledge” of the informant.Issue. When a court decides whether or not to issue a search warrant. defendant. THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES.