You are on page 1of 10

Ong Chia

The authenticity of the alleged petition for naturalization (SCN Case No. 031767) which was supposedly filed by Ong Chia
under LOI 270 has not been established. In fact, the case number of the alleged petition for naturalization. . . is 031767 while
the case number of the petition actually filed by the appellee is 031776. Thus, said document is totally unreliable and should
not be considered by the Honorable Court in resolving the instant appeal. 17
Indeed the documents and papers in question are inadmissible in evidence. The constitutional injunction declaring the
privacy of communication and correspondence [to be] inviolable3 is no less applicable simply because it is the wife (who
thinks herself aggrieved by her husbands infidelity) who is the party against whom the constitutional provision is to be
enforced. The only exception to the prohibition in the Constitution is if there is a lawful order [from a] court or when public
safety or order requires otherwise, as prescribed by law.4 Any violation of this provision renders the evidence obtained
inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding.
The weight of the prosecutions evidence must be appreciated in light of the well-settled rule which provides that an accused
can be convicted even if no eyewitness is available, as long as sufficient circumstantial evidence is presented by the
prosecution to prove beyond doubt that the accused committed the crime.
In assessing the probative value of DNA evidence, courts should consider, inter alia, the following factors: how the samples
were collected, how they were handled, the possibility of contamination of the samples, the procedure followed in analyzing
the samples, whether the proper standards and procedures were followed in conducting the tests, and the qualification of the
analyst who conducted the tests.
In Daubert v. Merrell Dow,33 it was ruled that pertinent evidence based on scientifically valid principles could be used as long
as it was relevant and reliable.
No ex-post facto law is involved in the case at bar. The science of DNA typing involves the admissibility, relevance and
reliability of the evidence obtained under the Rules of Court. Whereas an ex-post facto law refers primarily to a question of
law, DNA profiling requires a factual determination of the probative weight of the evidence presented
Generally, courts should only consider and rely upon duly established evidence and never on mere conjectures or suppositions. The legal
relevancy of evidence denotes "something more than a minimum of probative value," suggesting that such evidentiary relevance must
contain a "plus value."41 This may be necessary to preclude the trial court from being satisfied by matters of slight value, capable of
being exaggerated by prejudice and hasty conclusions. Evidence without "plus value" may be logically relevant but not legally sufficient
to convict. It is incumbent upon the trial court to balance the probative value of such evidence against the likely harm that would result
from its admission.
The judgment in a criminal case can be upheld only when there is relevant evidence from which the court can properly find or infer that
the accused is guilty beyond reasonable doubt. Proof beyond reasonable doubt requires moral certainty of guilt in order to sustain a
conviction. Moral certainty is that degree of certainty that convinces and directs the understanding and satisfies the reason and judgment
of those who are bound to act conscientiously upon it. It is certainty beyond reasonable doubt. 42 This requires that the circumstances,
taken together, should be of a conclusive nature and tendency; leading, on the whole, to a satisfactory conclusion that the accused, and no
one else, committed the offense charged.43 In view of the totality of evidence appreciated thus far, we rule that the present case passes the
test of moral certainty.
However, as a matter of procedure, and for the purpose of meeting the requirement of proof beyond reasonable doubt,
motive is essential for conviction when there is doubt as to the identity of the culprit.
strong and convincing evidence beyond mere preponderance is required to show the falsity or nullity of a notarial document.
In the present case, the main evidence presented by private respondents in proving their allegation that the subject deed of sale did not
reflect the true intention of the parties thereto is the sworn statement of Daniela dated December 28, 1977. The trial court admitted the
said sworn statement as part of private respondents evidence and gave credence to it. The CA also accorded great probative weight to this

There is no issue in the admissibility of the subject sworn statement. However, the admissibility of evidence should not be equated with
weight of evidence.22 The admissibility of evidence depends on its relevance and competence while the weight of evidence pertains to
evidence already admitted and its tendency to convince and persuade. 23 Thus, a particular item of evidence may be admissible, but its
evidentiary weight depends on judicial evaluation within the guidelines provided by the rules of evidence.24 It is settled that affidavits are
classified as hearsay evidence since they are not generally prepared by the affiant but by another who uses his own language in writing the
affiants statements, which may thus be either omitted or misunderstood by the one writing them. 25 Moreover, the adverse party is
deprived of the opportunity to cross-examine the affiant.26 For this reason, affidavits are generally rejected for being hearsay, unless the
affiants themselves are placed on the witness stand to testify thereon.27 The Court finds that both the trial court and the CA committed
error in giving the sworn statement probative weight. Since Daniela is no longer available to take the witness stand as she is already dead,
the RTC and the CA should not have given probative value on Danielas sworn statement for purposes of proving that the contract of sale
between her and petitioner was simulated and that, as a consequence, a trust relationship was created between them.
A dying declaration, although generally inadmissible as evidence due to its hearsay character, may nonetheless be admitted when the
following requisites concur, namely: (a) that the declaration must concern the cause and surrounding circumstances of the declarants
death; (b) that at the time the declaration is made, the declarant is under a consciousness of an impending death; (c) that the declarant is
competent as a witness; and (d) that the declaration is offered in a criminal case for homicide, murder, or parricide, in which the declarant
is a victim.
Scc Cchemicals
"SEC. 34. Offer of evidence. The court shall consider no evidence which has not been formally offered. The purpose for
which the evidence is offered shall be specified."
Petitioner likewise submits that none of the signatures affixed in the documentary evidence presented by SIHI were offered in
We note that the Court of Appeals found that SCC failed to appear several times on scheduled hearing dates despite due
notice to it and counsel. On all those scheduled hearing dates, petitioner was supposed to cross-examine the lone witness
offered by SIHI to prove its case. Petitioner now charges the appellate court with committing an error of law when it failed to
disallow the admission in evidence of said testimony pursuant to the "hearsay rule" contained in Section 36, Rule 130 of the
Rules of Court.
Where a party failed to object to hearsay evidence, then the same is admissible.9 The rationale for this exception is to be
found in the right of a litigant to cross-examine. It is settled that it is the opportunity to cross-examine which negates the claim
that the matters testified to by a witness are hearsay.10 However, the right to cross-examine may be waived. The repeated
failure of a party to cross-examine the witness is an implied waiver of such right. Petitioner was afforded several opportunities
by the trial court to cross-examine the other party's witness. Petitioner repeatedly failed to take advantage of these
opportunities. No error was thus committed by the respondent court when it sustained the trial court's finding that petitioner
had waived its right to cross-examine the opposing party's witness. It is now too late for petitioner to be raising this matter of
hearsay evidence.

Judicial Notice
LBP vs. Banal
the RTC, in concluding that the valuation of respondents property is P703,137.00, merely took judicial notice of the average
production figures in theRodriguez case pending before it and applied the same to this case without conducting a hearing
and worse, without the knowledge or consent of the parties,
Well-settled is the rule that courts are not authorized to take judicial notice of the contents of the records of other cases even
when said cases have been tried or are pending in the same court or before the same judge.[24] They may only do so in the
absence of objection and with the knowledge of the opposing party,[25] which are not obtaining here.

Furthermore, as earlier stated, the Rules of Court shall apply to all proceedings before the Special Agrarian Courts. In
this regard, Section 3, Rule 129 of the Revised Rules on Evidence is explicit on the necessity of a hearing before a court
takes judicial notice of a certain matter, thus:
SEC. 3. Judicial notice, when hearing necessary. During the trial, the court, on its own initiative, or on request of a party, may announce
its intention to take judicial notice of any matter and allow the parties to be heard thereon.
After the trial, and before judgment or on appeal, the proper court, on its own initiative or on request of a party, may take judicial notice
of any matter and allow the parties to be heard thereon if such matter is decisive of a material issue in the case. (emphasis added)
People vs. Kulais
The trial courts erroneous taking of judicial notice of a witness testimony in another case, also pending before it, does not
affect the conviction of the appellant, whose guilt is proven beyond reasonable doubt by other clear, convincing and
overwhelming evidence, both testimonial and documentary.
Appellant Kulais argues that he was denied due process when the trial court took judicial notice of the testimony given in
another case by one Lt. Melquiades Feliciano, who was the team leader of the government troops that captured him and his
purported cohorts.[16] Because he was allegedly deprived of his right to cross-examine a material witness in the person of
Lieutenant Feliciano, he contends that the latters testimony should not be used against him.[17]
True, as a general rule, courts should not take judicial notice of the evidence presented in other proceedings, even if
these have been tried or are pending in the same court, or have been heard and are actually pending before the same judge.
[18] This is especially true in criminal cases, where the accused has the constitutional right to confront and cross-examine
the witnesses against him.
Having said that, we note, however, that even if the court a quo did take judicial notice of the testimony of Lieutenant
Feliciano, it did not use such testimony in deciding the cases against the appellant. Hence, Appellant Kulais was not denied
due process. His conviction was based mainly on the positive identification made by some of the kidnap victims, namely,
Jessica Calunod, Armando Bacarro and Edilberto Perez. These witnesses were subjected to meticulous cross-examinations
conducted by appellants counsel. At best, then, the trial courts mention of Lieutenant Felicianos testimony is a decisional
surplusage which neither affected the outcome of the case nor substantially prejudiced Appellant Kulais.
Laureano vs. ca
"Neither can the Court determine whether the termination of the plaintiff is legal under the Singapore Laws because of the
defendant's failure to show which specific laws of Singapore Laws apply to this case. As substantially discussed in the
preceding paragraphs, the Philippine Courts do not take judicial notice of the laws of Singapore. The defendant that claims
the applicability of the Singapore Laws to this case has the burden of proof. The defendant has failed to do so. Therefore, the
Philippine law should be applied."
With respect to the banking laws of Switzerland cited by petitioners, the rule is that Philippine courts cannot take judicial
notice of foreign laws.53 Laws of foreign jurisdictions must be alleged and proved.
The Court cannot take judicial notice of foreign laws,1 which must be presented as public documents2 of a foreign country
and must be "evidenced by an official publication thereof."3Mere reference to a foreign law in a pleading does not suffice for it
to be considered in deciding a case.
Nor do we think that any such authority can be derived from the broader language, used in the same section, where it is said that our
courts may take judicial notice of matters of public knowledge "similar" to those therein enumerated. The proper rule we think is to
require proof of the statutes of the States of the American Union whenever their provisions are determinative of the issues in any action
litigated in the Philippine courts.
Nevertheless, even supposing that the trial court may have erred in taking judicial notice of the law of Illinois on the point in question,
such error is not now available to the petitioner, first, because the petition does not state any fact from which it would appear that the law
of Illinois is different from what the court found, and, secondly, because the assignment of error and argument for the appellant in this

court raises no question based on such supposed error. Though the trial court may have acted upon pure conjecture as to the law
prevailing in the State of Illinois, its judgment could not be set aside, even upon application made within six months under section 113 of
the Code of Civil Procedure, unless it should be made to appear affirmatively that the conjecture was wrong.
That there was fraud or bad faith on the part of respondent airline when it did not allow petitioners to board their flight for Los
Angeles in spite of confirmed tickets cannot be disputed. The U.S. law or regulation allegedly authorizing overbooking has
never been proved. Foreign laws do not prove themselves nor can the courts take judicial notice of them. Like any other fact,
they must be alleged and proved. 6 Written law may be evidenced by an official publication thereof or by a copy attested by
the officer having the legal custody of the record, or by his deputy, and accompanied with a certificate that such officer has
custody. The certificate may be made by a secretary of an embassy or legation, consul general, consul, vice-consul, or
consular agent or by any officer in the foreign service of the Philippines stationed in the foreign country in which the record is
kept, and authenticated by the seal of his office. 7
However, as the Court ruled in People v. Buntag, if the declarant repeats the statement in court, his extrajudicial confession becomes a
judicial admission, making the testimony admissible as to both conspirators.
[W]e must make a distinction between extrajudicial and judicial confessions. An extrajudicial confession may be given in evidence
against the confessant but not against his co-accused as they are deprived of the opportunity to cross-examine him. A judicial confession
is admissible against the declarants co-accused since the latter are afforded opportunity to cross-examine the former. Section 30, Rule 130
of the Rules of Court applies only to extrajudicial acts or admissions and not to testimony at trial where the party adversely
affected has the opportunity to cross-examine the declarant. Mercenes admission implicating his co-accused was given on the witness
stand. It is admissible in evidence against appellant Palijon. Moreover, where several accused are tried together for the same offense, the
testimony of a co-accused implicating his co-accused is competent evidence against the latter
Republic vs. sandiganbayan
The petitioner also claims that since the Bane deposition had already been previously introduced and admitted in Civil Case No. 0130,
then the Sandiganbayan should have taken judicial notice of the Bane deposition as part of its evidence.
Judicial notice is the cognizance of certain facts that judges may properly take and act on without proof because these facts are already
known to them.[152] Put differently, it is the assumption by a court of a fact without need of further traditional evidentiary support. The
principle is based on convenience and expediency in securing and introducing evidence on matters which are not ordinarily capable of
dispute and are not bona fide disputed.[153]
The foundation for judicial notice may be traced to the civil and canon law maxim, manifesta (or notoria) non indigent probatione.
[154] The taking of judicial notice means that the court will dispense with the traditional form of presentation of evidence. In so doing,
the court assumes that the matter is so notorious that it would not be disputed.
The concept of judicial notice is embodied in Rule 129 of the Revised Rules on Evidence. Rule 129 either requires the court to take
judicial notice, inter alia, of the official acts of the x x x judicial departments of the ,[155] or gives the court the discretion to take judicial
notice of matters ought to be known to judges because of their judicial functions.[156] On the other hand, a party-litigant may ask the
court to take judicial notice of any matter and the court may allow the parties to be heard on the propriety of taking judicial notice of the
matter involved.[157] In the present case, after the petitioner filed its Urgent Motion and/or Request for Judicial Notice, the respondents
were also heard through their corresponding oppositions.
In adjudicating a case on trial, generally, courts are not authorized to take judicial notice of the contents of the records of other cases, even
when such cases have been tried or are pending in the same court, and notwithstanding that both cases may have been tried or are actually
pending before the same judge.[158] This rule though admits of exceptions.
As a matter of convenience to all the parties, a court may properly treat all or any part of the original record of a case filed in its archives
as read into the record of a case pending before it, when, with the knowledge of, and absent an objection from, the adverse
party, reference is made to it for that purpose, by name and number or in some other manner by which it is sufficiently
designated; or when the original record of the former case or any part of it, is actually withdrawn from the archives at the court's direction,
at the request or with the consent of the parties, andadmitted as a part of the record of the case then pending.[159]
Courts must also take judicial notice of the records of another case or cases, where sufficient basis exists in the records of the case before
it, warranting the dismissal of the latter case.[160]

The issue before us does not involve the applicability of the rule on mandatory taking of judicial notice; neither is the applicability of the
rule on discretionary taking of judicial notice seriously pursued. Rather, the petitioner approaches the concept of judicial notice from
a genealogical perspective of treating whatever evidence offered in any of the children cases Civil Case 0130 as evidence in the parent
case Civil Case 0009 - or of the whole family of cases.[161] To the petitioner, the supposed relationship of these cases warrants the taking
of judicial notice.
We strongly disagree. First, the supporting cases[162] the petitioner cited are inapplicable either because these cases involve only a single
proceeding or an exception to the rule, which proscribes the courts from taking judicial notice of the contents of the records of other cases.
[163] Second, the petitioners proposition is obviously obnoxious to a system of orderly procedure. The petitioner itself admits that the
present case has generated a lot of cases, which, in all likelihood, involve issues of varying complexity. If we follow the logic of the
petitioners argument, we would be espousing judicial confusion by indiscriminately allowing the admission of evidence in one case,
which was presumably found competent and relevant in another case, simply based on the supposed lineage of the cases. It is the duty of
the petitioner, as a party-litigant, to properly lay before the court the evidence it relies upon in support of the relief it seeks, instead of
imposing that same duty on the court. We invite the petitioners attention to our prefatory pronouncement in Lopez v. Sandiganbayan:[164]
Down the oft-trodden path in our judicial system, by common sense, tradition and the law, the Judge in trying a case sees
only with judicial eyes as he ought to know nothing about the facts of the case, except those which have been adduced
judicially in evidence. Thus, when the case is up for trial, the judicial head is empty as to facts involved and it is incumbent
upon the litigants to the action to establish by evidence the facts upon which they rely. (emphasis ours)
We therefore refuse, in the strongest terms, to entertain the petitioners argument that we should take judicial notice of the Bane deposition
In Mallillin v. People,[40] People v. Obmiranis[41] and People v. Garcia[42] and Carino v. People[43] we declared that
the failure of the prosecution to offer the testimony of key witnesses to establish a sufficiently complete chain of custody of a
specimen of shabu, and the irregularity which characterized the handling of the evidence before the same was finally offered
in court, fatally conflict with every proposition relative to the culpability of the accused. It is this same reason that now moves
us to reverse the judgment of conviction in the present case.

In evidence, the one who offers real evidence, such as the narcotics in a trial of drug case, must account for the custody of the evidence
from the moment in which it reaches his custody until the moment in which it is offered in evidence, and such evidence goes to weight
not to admissibility of evidence. Com. V. White, 353 409, 232 N.E.2d 335.
Both agreed that the illegal sale of shabu was proven beyond reasonable doubt. For the successful prosecution of offenses
involving the illegal sale of drugs under Section 5, Article II of R.A. No. 9165, the following elements must be proven: (1) the
identity of the buyer and seller, object and consideration; and (2) the delivery of the thing sold and the payment therefor.
What is material to the prosecution for illegal sale of dangerous drugs is the proof that the transaction or sale actually took
place, coupled with the presentation in court of evidence of corpus delicti.
In the prosecution for the crime of illegal sale of prohibited drugs, the following elements must concur: (1) the identities of the
buyer and seller, object, and consideration; and (2) the delivery of the thing sold and the payment thereof. What is material to
the prosecution for illegal sale of dangerous drugs is the proof that the transaction or sale actually occurred, coupled with the
presentation in court of the substance seized as evidence.
The Court further finds that the arresting officers had substantially complied with the rule on the chain of custody of the
dangerous drugs as provided under Section 21 of Republic Act No. 9165. Jurisprudence has decreed that, in dangerous
drugs cases, the failure of the police officers to make a physical inventory and to photograph the sachets of shabu, as well as
to mark the sachets at the place of arrest, do not render the seized drugs inadmissible in evidence or automatically impair the
integrity of the chain of custody of the said drugs.29What is of utmost importance is the preservation of the integrity and the

evidentiary value of the seized items, as these would be utilized in the determination of the guilt or innocence of the accused.

Before secondary evidence may be admitted to prove the contents of original documents, the offeror must prove the due
execution and the subsequent loss or unavailability of the original.
Anent the best evidence rule, Section 3( d) of Rule 130 of the Rules of Court provides that when the subject of inquiry is the contents of a
document, no evidence shall be admissible other than the original document itself, except when the original is a public record in the
custody of a public officer or is recorded in a public office.22 Section 7 of the same Rule provides that when the original of a document is
in the custody of a public officer or is recorded in a public office, its contents may be proved by a certified copy issued by the public
officer in custody thereof.23 Section 24 of Rule 132 provides that the record of public documents may be evidenced by a copy attested by
the officer having the legal custody or the record.24
Rep. Act No. 4200 entitled "An Act to Prohibit and Penalize Wire Tapping and Other Related Violations of the Privacy of
Communication, and for other purposes" expressly makes such tape recordings inadmissible in evidence. The relevant provisions of Rep.
Act No. 4200 are as follows:
Sec. 1. It shall be unlawful for any person, not being authorized by all the parties to any private
communication or spoken word, to tap any wire or cable, or by using any other device or arrangement, to
secretly overhear, intercept, or record such communication or spoken word by using a device commonly
known as a dictaphone or dictagraph or detectaphone or walkie-talkie or tape-recorder, or however
otherwise described. . . .
Sec. 4. Any communication or spoken word, or the existence, contents, substance, purport, or meaning of the
same or any part 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, quasijudicial, legislative or administrative hearing or investigation.
Lapu lapu
There is no dispute that the promissory notes had already matured. However, the petitioners insist that the loans had not
become due and demandable as they deny receipt of the respondent Banks demand letters. When presented the registry
return cards during the trial, petitioner Tan claimed that he did not recognize the signatures thereon. The petitioners allegation
and denial are self-serving. They cannot prevail over the registry return cards which constitute documentary evidence and
which enjoy the presumption that, absent clear and convincing evidence to the contrary, these were regularly issued by the
postal officials in the performance of their official duty and that they acted in good faith.[9] Further, as the CA correctly opined,
mails are presumed to have been properly delivered and received by the addressee in the regular course of the mail.[10] As
the CA noted, there is no showing that the addresses on the registry return cards were wrong. It is the petitioners burden to
overcome the presumptions by sufficient evidence, and other than their barefaced denial, the petitioners failed to support
their claim that they did not receive the demand letters; therefore, no prior demand was made on them by the respondent
As a corollary, the parol evidence rule likewise constrains this Court to reject petitioner Tans claim regarding the purported
unwritten agreement between him and the respondent Bank on the payment of the obligation. Section 9, Rule 130 of the of
the Revised Rules of Court provides that [w]hen the terms of an agreement have been reduced to writing, it is to be
considered as containing all the terms agreed upon and there can be, between the parties and their successors-in-interest,
no evidence of such terms other than the contents of the written agreement.[17]
In this case, the promissory notes are the law between the petitioners and the respondent Bank. These promissory
notes contained maturity dates as follows: February 5, 1978, March 28, 1978, April 11, 1978 and May 5, 1978, respectively.
That these notes were to be paid on these dates is clear and explicit. Nowhere was it stated therein that they would be
renewed on a year-to-year basis or rolled-over annually until paid from the proceeds of petitioner Tans shares in the

Lapulapu Industries Corp. Accordingly, this purported unwritten agreement could not be made to vary or contradict the terms
and conditions in the promissory notes.
Evidence of a prior or contemporaneous verbal agreement is generally not admissible to vary, contradict or defeat the
operation of a valid contract.[18] While parol evidence is admissible to explain the meaning of written contracts, it cannot
serve the purpose of incorporating into the contract additional contemporaneous conditions which are not mentioned at all in
writing, unless there has been fraud or mistake.[19] No such allegation had been made by the petitioners in this case.
The petitioners argument calls to fore the application of the parol evidence rule,35 i.e., when the terms of an agreement are reduced to
writing, the written agreement is deemed to contain all the terms agreed upon and no evidence of these terms can be admitted other than
what is contained in the written agreement.36 Whatever is not found in the writing is understood to have been waived and abandoned.37
To avoid the operation of the parol evidence rule, the Rules of Court allows a party to present evidence modifying, explaining or adding to
the terms of the written agreement if he puts in issue in his pleading, as in this case, the failure of the written agreement to express the true
intent and agreement of the parties. The failure of the written agreement to express the true intention of the parties is either by reason of
mistake, fraud, inequitable conduct or accident, which nevertheless did not prevent a meeting of the minds of the parties.

The admissibility of evidence should be distinguished from its probative value. Just because a piece of evidence is admitted
does not ipso facto mean that it conclusively proves the fact in dispute.
Pleadings filed via fax machines are not considered originals and are at best exact copies. As such, they are not admissible
in evidence, as there is no way of determining whether they are genuine or authentic.
The admissibility of evidence should not be confused with its probative value. Admissibility refers to the question of whether
certain pieces of evidence are to be considered at all, while probative value refers to the question of whether the admitted
evidence proves an issue.[26] Thus, a particular item of evidence may be admissible, but its evidentiary weight depends on
judicial evaluation within the guidelines provided by the rules of evidence.[27]
torres vs. pagcor
A facsimile is not a genuine and authentic pleading. It is, at best, an exact copy preserving all the marks of an original. Without the
original, there is no way of determining on its face whether the facsimilepleading is genuine and authentic and was originally signed by
the party and his counsel. It may, in fact, be a sham pleading.
We, therefore, conclude that the terms "electronic data message" and "electronic document," as defined under the Electronic Commerce
Act of 2000, do not include a facsimile transmission. Accordingly, a facsimile transmission cannot be considered as electronic
evidence. It is not the functional equivalent of an original under the Best Evidence Rule and is not admissible as electronic evidence.
Ang vs. republic
Rustan claims that the obscene picture sent to Irish through a text message constitutes an electronic document. Thus, it should be
authenticated by means of an electronic signature, as provided under Section 1, Rule 5 of the Rules on Electronic Evidence (A.M. 01-701-SC).
But, firstly, Rustan is raising this objection to the admissibility of the obscene picture, Exhibit A, for the first time before this Court. The
objection is too late since he should have objected to the admission of the picture on such ground at the time it was offered in evidence.
He should be deemed to have already waived such ground for objection.14
Besides, the rules he cites do not apply to the present criminal action. The Rules on Electronic Evidence applies only to civil actions,
quasi-judicial proceedings, and administrative proceedings
In People v. Trelles,24 where the trial court relied heavily on the therein mentally retarded private complainants testimony irregardless of

her "monosyllabic responses and vacillations between lucidity and ambiguity," this Court held:
A mental retardate or a feebleminded person is not, per se, disqualified from being a witness, her mental condition not being a
vitiation of her credibility. It is now universally accepted that intellectual weakness, no matter what form it assumes, is not a
valid objection to the competency of a witness so long as the latter can still give a fairly intelligent and reasonable narrative of
the matter testified to.25
It can not then be gainsaid that a mental retardate can be a witness, depending on his or her ability to relate what he or she knows. 26 If his
or her testimony is coherent, the same is admissible in court.27
alvarez vs. ramirez
Sec. 22. Disqualification by reason of marriage. During their marriage, neither the husband nor the wife may testify for or
against the other without the consent of the affected spouse, except in a civil case by one against the other, or in a criminal
case for a crime committed by one against the other or the latters direct descendants or ascendants.
The reasons given for the rule are:
There is identity of interests between husband and wife;
If one were to testify for or against the other, there is consequent danger of perjury;
The policy of the law is to guard the security and confidences of private life, even at the risk
of an occasional failure of justice, and to prevent domestic disunion and unhappiness; and
Where there is want of domestic tranquility there is danger of punishing one spouse through
the hostile testimony of the other.[11]
But like all other general rules, the marital disqualification rule has its own exceptions, both in civil actions
between the spouses and in criminal cases for offenses committed by one against the other. Like the rule
itself, the exceptions are backed by sound reasons which, in the excepted cases, outweigh those in support of
the general rule. For instance, where the marital and domestic relations are so strained that there is no more
harmony to be preserved nor peace and tranquility which may be disturbed, the reason based upon such
harmony and tranquility fails. In such a case, identity of interests disappears and the consequent danger of
perjury based on that identity is non-existent. Likewise, in such a situation, the security and confidences of
private life, which the law aims at protecting, will be nothing but ideals, which through their absence, merely
leave a void in the unhappy home.
Sunga chan

The Dead Mans Statute provides that if one party to the alleged transaction is precluded from testifying
by death, insanity, or other mental disabilities, the surviving party is not entitled to the undue advantage
of giving his own uncontradicted and unexplained account of the transaction.[9] But before this rule can
be successfully invoked to bar the introduction of testimonial evidence, it is necessary that:
1. The witness is a party or assignor of a party to a case or persons in whose behalf a case is
2. The action is against an executor or administrator or other representative of a deceased person or a
person of unsound mind;
3. The subject-matter of the action is a claim or demand against the estate of such deceased person or
against person of unsound mind;
4. His testimony refers to any matter of fact which occurred before the death of such deceased person
or before such person became of unsound mind.[10]

Two reasons forestall the application of the Dead Mans Statute to this case.
First, petitioners filed a compulsory counterclaim[11] against respondent in their answer before the trial
court, and with the filing of their counterclaim, petitioners themselves effectively removed this case
from the ambit of the Dead Mans Statute.[12] Well entrenched is the rule that when it is the executor or
administrator or representatives of the estate that sets up the counterclaim, the plaintiff, herein
respondent, may testify to occurrences before the death of the deceased to defeat the counterclaim.
[13] Moreover, as defendant in the counterclaim, respondent is not disqualified from testifying as to
matters of fact occurring before the death of the deceased, said action not having been brought against
but by the estate or representatives of the deceased.[14]
Second, the testimony of Josephine is not covered by the Dead Mans Statute for the simple reason
that she is not a party or assignor of a party to a case or persons in whose behalf a case is
prosecuted. Records show that respondent offered the testimony of Josephine to establish the existence
of the partnership between respondent and Jacinto. Petitioners insistence that Josephine is the alter ego
of respondent does not make her an assignor because the term assignor of a party means assignor of a
cause of action which has arisen, and not the assignor of a right assigned before any cause of action has
arisen.[15] Plainly then, Josephine is merely a witness of respondent, the latter being the party plaintiff.

As to the alleged violation of the dead mans statute, [18] suffice it to state that said rule finds no
application in the present case. The dead mans statute does not operate to close the mouth
of a witness as to any matter of fact coming to his knowledge in any other way than through
personal dealings with the deceased person, or communication made by the deceased to the
Chan vs. chan
SEC. 24. Disqualification by reason of privileged communication. The following persons cannot testify as to
matters learned in confidence in the following cases:
(c) A person authorized to practice medicine, surgery or obstetrics cannot in a civil case, without the consent of the
patient, be examined as to any advice or treatment given by him or any information which he may have acquired in
attending such patient in a professional capacity, which information was necessary to enable him to act in that
capacity, and which would blacken the reputation of the patient.
The physician-patient privileged communication rule essentially means that a physician who gets information while
professionally attending a patient cannot in a civil case be examined without the patients consent as to any facts
which would blacken the latters reputation. This rule is intended to encourage the patient to open up to the physician,
relate to him the history of his ailment, and give him access to his body, enabling the physician to make a correct
diagnosis of that ailment and provide the appropriate cure. Any fear that a physician could be compelled in the future
to come to court and narrate all that had transpired between him and the patient might prompt the latter to clam up,
thus putting his own health at great risk


The stern rule against representation of conflicting interests is founded on principles of public policy and
good taste. It springs from the attorney's duty to represent his client with undivided fidelity and to maintain
inviolate the client's confidence as well as from the injunction forbidding the examination of an attorney as
to any of the privileged communications of his client.

At common law a governmental privilege against disclosure is recognized with respect to state secrets
bearing on military, diplomatic and similar matters. This privilege is based upon public interest of such
paramount importance as in and of itself transcending the individual interests of a private citizen, even
though, as a consequence thereof, the plaintiff cannot enforce his legal rights.