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Case Title : LEONILO SANCHEZ alias NILO, appellant, vs.

PEOPLE OF THE
PHILIPPINES and COURT OF APPEALS, appelleesCase Nature : PETITION for
review on certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals.
Syllabi Class : Criminal Procedure|Information
Syllabi:
1. Criminal Law; Republic Act No. 7610 (Child Abuse Law); Definition
of Child Abuse.Under Subsection (b), Section 3 of R.A. No. 7610, child abuse refers to the
maltreatment of a child, whether habitual or not, which includes any of the
following: (1) Psychological and physical abuse, neglect, cruelty, sexual
abuse and emotional maltreatment; (2) Any act by deeds or words which
debases, degrades or demeans the intrinsic worth and dignity of a child as a
human being; (3) Unreasonable deprivation of his basic needs for survival,
such as food and shelter; or (4) Failure to immediately give medical
treatment to an injured child resulting in serious impairment of his growth
and development or in his permanent incapacity or death.
2. Criminal Procedure; Information; What controls is not the title of the
information or the designation of the offense but the actual facts recited
therein.+
3. Same; Same; Penalties; Indeterminate Sentence Law; Although
Republic Act No. 7610 is a special law, the rules in the Revised Penal
Code for graduating penalties by degrees or determining the proper
period should be applied; Where the special law adopted penalties from
the Revised Penal Code, the Indeterminate Sentence Law will apply just as it
would in felonies.The penalty for Other Acts of Child Abuse is prision mayor in its minimum
period. This penalty is derived from, and defined in, the Revised Penal Code.
Although R.A. No. 7610 is a special law, the rules in the Revised Penal Code
for graduating penalties by degrees or determining the proper period should
be applied. Thus, where the special law adopted penalties from the Revised
Penal Code, the Indeterminate Sentence Law will apply just as it would in
felonies.
4. Same; Same; Evidence; Appeals; Witnesses; Full weight and respect
are usually accorded by the appellate court to the findings of the trial court
on the credibility of witnesses since the trial judge had the opportunity to
observe the demeanor of the witnesses.+
5. Same; Same; As defined in the law, child abuse includes physical abuse
of the child, whether the same is habitual or not.Appellant contends that, after proof, the act should not be considered as
child abuse but merely as slight physical injuries defined and punishable
under Article 266 of the Revised Penal Code. Appellant conveniently forgets
that when the incident happened, VVV was a child entitled to the protection

extended by R.A. No. 7610, as mandated by the Constitution. As defined in


the law, child abuse includes physical abuse of the child, whether the same
is habitual or not. The act of appellant falls squarely within this definition.
We, therefore, cannot accept appellants contention.

Case Title : PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. ANTONINE B. SALEY


a.k.a. ANNIE B. SALEY, accused-appellant.
Case Nature : APPEAL from a decision of the Regional Trial Court of La Trinidad,
Benguet, Br. 10.
Syllabi Class : Criminal Law|Illegal Recruitment|Criminal Procedure; Appeals|Words
and Phrases|Evidence|Witnesses|Aggravating and Mitigating Circumstances|Illegal
Recruitment in Large Scale|Estafa|Double Jeopardy|Penalties|Indeterminate
Sentence Law
Syllabi:
1. Criminal Law; Illegal Recruitment; Criminal Procedure; Appeals; The Supreme
Court has appellate jurisdiction over ordinary appeals in criminal cases directly from
the Regional Trial Courts when the penalty imposed is reclusion perpetua or higher
but appeals of criminal cases involving penalties lower than reclusion perpetua or
life imprisonment may likewise be brought to the Supreme Court where the offenses
were committed on the same occasion or arising out of the same occurrence that
gave rise to the more serious offense for which the penalty of death or life
imprisonment is imposed.+
2. Same; Same; Penalties; Indeterminate Sentence Law; The penalty next lower
should be based on the penalty prescribed by the Revised Penal Code for the
offense, without first considering any modifying circumstance attendant to the
commission of the crimethe modifying circumstances are considered only in the imposition of the
maximum term of the indeterminate sentence.In the case of People vs. Gabres,
the Court has had occasion to so state thatUnder the Indeterminate Sentence
Law, the maximum term of the penalty shall be that which, in view of the attending
circumstances, could be properly imposed under the Revised Penal Code, and the
minimum shall be within the range of the penalty next lower to that prescribed for
the offense. The penalty next lower should be based on the penalty prescribed by
the Code for the offense, without first considering any modifying circumstance
attendant to the commission of the crime. The determination of the minimum
penalty is left by law to the sound discretion of the court and it can be anywhere
within the range of the penalty next lower without any reference to the periods into
which it might be subdivided. The modifying circumstances are considered only in
the imposition of the maximum term of the indeterminate sentence. The fact that
the amounts involved in the instant case exceed P22,000.00 should not be
considered in the initial determination of the indeterminate penalty; instead, the
matter should be so taken as analogous to modifying circumstances in the
imposition of the maximum term of the full indeterminate sentence. This
interpretation of the law accords with the rule that penal laws should be construed
in favor of the accused.

3. Same; Estafa; Illegal Recruitment; Double Jeopardy; Conviction for illegal


recruitment under the Labor Code does not bar the punishment of the offender for
estafa.+
4. Same; Illegal Recruitment in Large Scale; Requisites.+
5. Same; Same; Aggravating and Mitigating Circumstances; The provisions of the
Revised Penal Code on the application of the circumstances that could modify the
criminal liability of an accused are inapplicable to special laws.Altogether, the evidence against appellant has established beyond any discernible
shadow of doubt that appellant is indeed guilty of illegal recruitment on various
counts. Being neither a licensee nor a holder of authority to recruit, appellant must
suffer under Article 39(c) of the Labor Code the penalty of imprisonment of not less
than four years nor more than eight years or a fine of not less than P20,000.00 nor
more than P100,000.00 or both such imprisonment and fine, at the discretion of the
court. In imposing the penalty, the provisions of the Revised Penal Code on the
application of the circumstances that could modify the criminal liability of an
accused cannot be considered, these provisions being inapplicable to special laws.
6. Same; Same; Same; The absence of receipts to evidence payment to an indictee
in a criminal case for illegal recruitment does not warrant an acquittal of the
accused, and it is not necessarily fatal to the prosecutions cause.+
7. Same; Same; Evidence; Witnesses; The rule has always been that the testimony
of witnesses is to be weighed, not that the witnesses be numbered, and it is not an
uncommon experience to have a conclusion of guilt reached on the basis of the
testimony of a single witness.+
8. Same; Same; Same; Words and Phrases; Recruitment includes the act of referral
or the act of passing along or forwarding of an applicant for employment after an
initial interview of a selected applicant for employment to a selected employer,
placement officer or bureau.+
9. Same; Same; Elements of Illegal Recruitment.+

Case Title : EVANGELINE LADONGA, petitioner, vs. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES,


respondent.
Case Nature : PETITION for review on certiorari of a decision of the Court of Appeals.
Syllabi Class : Criminal Law|Bouncing Checks Law (B.P. Blg. 22)|Conspiracy
Syllabi:
1. Criminal Law; Bouncing Checks Law (B.P. Blg. 22); Article 10 of the RPC is
composed of two clausesthe first providing that offenses which in the future are
made punishable under special laws are not subject to the provisions of the RPC,
while the second makes the RPC supplementary to such laws; The first clause
should be understood to mean only that the special penal laws are controlling with
regard to offenses therein specifically punished, and the second clause contains the
soul of the article, the main idea and purpose of the article being embodied in the
provision that the code shall be supplementary to special laws, unless the latter
should specifically provide the contrary.Article 10 of the RPC reads as follows: ART.
10. Offenses not subject to the provisions of this Code.Offenses which are or in the future may be punishable under special laws are not
subject to the provisions of this Code. This Code shall be supplementary to such
laws, unless the latter should specially provide the contrary. The article is composed
of two clauses. The first provides that offenses which in the future are made
punishable under special laws are not subject to the provisions of the RPC, while the
second makes the RPC supplementary to such laws. While it seems that the two
clauses are contradictory, a sensible interpretation will show that they can perfectly
be reconciled. The first clause should be understood to mean only that the special
penal laws are controlling with regard to offenses therein specifically punished. Said
clause only restates the elemental rule of statutory construction that special legal
provisions prevail over general ones. Lex specialis derogant generali. In fact, the
clause can be considered as a superfluity, and could have been eliminated
altogether. The second clause contains the soul of the article. The main idea and
purpose of the article is embodied in the provision that the code shall be
supplementary to special laws, unless the latter should specifically provide the
contrary.
2. Criminal Law; Bouncing Checks Law (B.P. Blg. 22); Conspiracy; In the absence of
contrary provision in B.P. Blg. 22, the general provisions of the RPC which, by their
nature, are necessarily applicable, may be applied suppletorily, including the
provisions on conspiracy.B.P. Blg. 22 does not expressly proscribe the suppletory application of the provisions
of the RPC. Thus, in the absence of contrary provision in B.P. Blg. 22, the general
provisions of the RPC which, by their nature, are necessarily applicable, may be
applied suppletorily. Indeed, in the recent case of Yu vs. People, the Court applied

suppletorily the provisions on subsidiary imprisonment under Article 39 of the RPC


to B.P. Blg. 22. The suppletory application of the principle of conspiracy in this case
is analogous to the application of the provision on principals under Article 17 in U.S.
vs. Ponte. For once conspiracy or action in concert to achieve a criminal design is
shown, the act of one is the act of all the conspirators, and the precise extent or
modality of participation of each of them becomes secondary, since all the
conspirators are principals.
3. Criminal Law; Bouncing Checks Law (B.P. Blg. 22); Conspiracy; To be held guilty as
a co-principal by reason of conspiracy, the accused must be shown to have
performed an overt act in pursuance or furtherance of the complicity; Mere
presence when the check was issued does not necessarily lead to an inference of
concurrence with the criminal design to issue a bad check.Article 8 of the RPC provides that a conspiracy exists when two or more persons
come to an agreement concerning the commission of a felony and decide to commit
it. To be held guilty as a co-principal by reason of conspiracy, the accused must be
shown to have performed an overt act in pursuance or furtherance of the complicity.
The overt act or acts of the accused may consist of active participation in the actual
commission of the crime itself or may consist of moral assistance to his coconspirators by moving them to execute or implement the criminal plan. In the
present case, the prosecution failed to prove that petitioner performed any overt act
in furtherance of the alleged conspiracy. As testified to by the lone prosecution
witness, complainant Alfredo Oculam, petitioner was merely present when her
husband, Adronico, signed the check subject of Criminal Case No. 7068. With
respect to Criminal Case Nos. 7069-7070, Oculam also did not describe the details
of petitioners participation. He did not specify the nature of petitioners
involvement in the commission of the crime, either by a direct act of participation, a
direct inducement of her co-conspirator, or cooperating in the commission of the
offense by another act without which it would not have been accomplished.
Apparently, the only semblance of overt act that may be attributed to petitioner is
that she was present when the first check was issued. However, this inference
cannot be stretched to mean concurrence with the criminal design.
4. Criminal Law; Bouncing Checks Law (B.P. Blg. 22); Conspiracy; Even knowledge,
acquiescence in or agreement to cooperate, is not enough to constitute one as a
party to a conspiracy, absent any active participation in the commission of the
crime with a view to the furtherance of the common design and purpose.Conspiracy must be established, not by conjectures, but by positive and conclusive
evidence. Conspiracy transcends mere companionship and mere presence at the
scene of the crime does not in itself amount to conspiracy. Even knowledge,
acquiescence in or agreement to cooperate, is not enough to constitute one as a
party to a conspiracy, absent any active participation in the commission of the
crime with a view to the furtherance of the common design and purpose.