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[G.R. No. 130423.

November 18, 2002]


VIRGIE SERONA, petitioner, vs. HON. COURT OF APPEALS and THE PEOPLE
OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents.
YNARES-SANTIAGO, J.:
Facts:
Virgie Serano received in trust from Leonida E. Quilatan various pieces of jewelry in
the total value of P567,750.00 to be sold on commission basis under the express
duty and obligation of remitting the proceeds thereof to Quilantan if sold or
returning the same to the latter if unsold.
Unknown to Quilatan, Serona entrusted the jewelry to one Marichu Labrador for the
latter to sell on commission basis. Serona was not able to collect payment from
Labrador, which caused her to likewise fail to pay her obligation to Quilatan.
Issue/s:
1. W/N THERE WAS AN ABUSE OF CONFIDENCE ON THE PART OF PETITIONER IN
ENTRUSTING THE SUBJECT JEWELRIES TO HER SUB-AGENT FOR SALE ON
COMMISSION TO PROSPECTIVE BUYERS.
2. W/N THERE WAS MISAPPROPRIATION OR CONVERSION ON THE PART OF
PETITIONER WHEN SHE FAILED TO RETURN THE SUBJECT JEWELRIES TO
PRIVATE COMPLAINANT.
Held:
Virgie Serona is ACQUITTED of the crime of estafa, but is held civilly liable.
Ratio:
An agent who is not prohibited from appointing a sub-agent but does so without
express authority is responsible for the acts of the sub-agent.
1. Serano did not ipso facto commit the crime of estafa through conversion or
misappropriation by delivering the jewelry to a sub-agent for sale on
commission basis.
The law on agency in our jurisdiction allows the appointment by an agent of a
substitute or sub-agent in the absence of an express agreement to the
contrary between the agent and the principal. In the case at bar, the
appointment of Labrador as petitioners sub-agent was not expressly
prohibited by Quilatan, as the acknowledgment receipt does not contain any

such limitation. Neither does it appear that petitioner was verbally forbidden
by Quilatan from passing on the jewelry to another person before the
acknowledgment receipt was executed or at any other time. Thus, it cannot
be said that petitioners act of entrusting the jewelry to Labrador is
characterized by abuse of confidence because such an act was not proscribed
and is, in fact, legally sanctioned.
2. It was established that the inability of petitioner as agent to comply with her
duty to return either the pieces of jewelry or the proceeds of its sale to her
principal Quilatan was due, in turn, to the failure of Labrador to abide by her
agreement with petitioner. Notably, Labrador testified that she obligated
herself to sell the jewelry in behalf of petitioner also on commission basis or
to return the same if not sold. In other words, the pieces of jewelry were
given by petitioner to Labrador to achieve the very same end for which they
were delivered to her in the first place. Consequently, there is no conversion
since the pieces of jewelry were not devoted to a purpose or use different
from that agreed upon.
Similarly, it cannot be said that petitioner misappropriated the jewelry or
delivered them to Labrador without right. Aside from the fact that no
condition or limitation was imposed on the mode or manner by which
petitioner was to effect the sale, it is also consistent with usual practice for
the seller to necessarily part with the valuables in order to find a buyer and
allow inspection of the items for sale.

[G.R. No. 129039. September 17, 2002]


SIREDY ENTERPRISES, INC. petitioner, vs. HON. COURT OF APPEALS and
CONRADO DE GUZMAN, respondents.
QUISUMBING, J.:
Facts:
Conrado De Guzman is an architect-contractor doing business under the name and
style of Jigscon Construction. Siredy Enterprises, Inc. (hereafter Siredy) is the owner
and developer of Ysmael Village, a subdivision in Sta. Cruz, Marilao, Bulacan. The
president of Siredy is Ismael E. Yanga.
As stated in its Articles of Incorporation, the primary corporate purpose of Siredy is
to acquire lands, subdivide and develop them, erect buildings and houses thereon,
and sell, lease or otherwise dispose of said properties to interested buyers.
Sometime before October 1978, Yanga executed an undated Letter of Authority duly
signed by Yanga which constituted Hermogenes Santos as Siredys agent, whose

authority included entering into a contract for the building of housing units at
Ysmael Village.
Thereafter, Santos entered into a Deed of Agreement with De Guzman.
From October 1978 to April 1990, De Guzman constructed 26 residential units at
Ysmael Village. Thirteen (13) of these were fully paid but the other 13 remained
unpaid. The total contractual price of these 13 unpaid houses is P412,154.93 which
was verified and confirmed to be correct by Santos, per an Accomplishment
Billing that the latter signed. Yanga is not a signatory to the said contact.
De Guzman tried but failed to collect the unpaid account from petitioner. Thus, he
instituted the action below for specific performance against Siredy, Yanga, and
Santos who all denied liability.
During the trial, Santos disappeared and his whereabouts remain unknown.

Issue:
W/N Hermogenes B. Santos was a duly constituted agent of Siredy, with authority to
enter into contracts for the construction of residential units in Ysmael Village and
thus the capacity to bind Siredy to the Deed of Agreement.

Held:
Siredy Enterprises, Inc. is ordered to pay Conrado de Guzman actual damages with
legal interest.

Ratio:
By the relationship of agency, one party called the principal authorizes another
called the agent to act for and in his behalf in transactions with third persons. The
authority of the agent to act emanates from the powers granted to him by his
principal; his act is the act of the principal if done within the scope of the authority.
He who acts through another acts himself.
On its face, the Letter of Authority executed by Yanga clearly and unequivocally
constituted Santos to do and execute, among other things, the act of negotiating
and entering into contract or contracts to build Housing Units on the subdivision lots
in Ysmael Village, Sta. Rosa, Marilao, Bulacan. Nothing could be more express than
the written stipulations contained therein.

It was upon the authority of this document that De Guzman transacted business
with Santos that resulted in the construction contract denominated as the Deed of
Agreement.