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Restraint that is lawful and pursuant to a court process
cannot be inquired into through habeas corpus.
-On June 16, 2003 petitioner Anita Mangila and four
others were charged with seven criminal complaints of
syndicated estafa with violation of RA no. 8042Migrant
Workers and Overseas Filipino Act of 1995). The
complaints arose from the recruiting and promising of
employment to private complainants as overseas contract
workers in Canada and from the collection of fees without
lawful authority from the Philippine Overseas
Employment Administration (POEA)
-On the following day, the presiding judge Pangilinan,
herein respondent, conducted a preliminary investigation
on complaints. And after examining Miguel Palayonone
of the complainants, Judge Pangilinan issued a WOA of
petitioner and her cohorts without bail. Subsequently the
records of the cases were transmitted to the City
Prosecutor for further proceedings and appropriate
action. On June 18, 2003, Mangila was detained at the
-Mangila petitioned for habeas corpus to the CA claiming
that Judge Pangilinan did not have authority to conduct

preliminary investigation and the same was not yet

completed when he issued the WOA and the issuance
thereof was without finding probable cause. The CA
denied the petition for lack of merit.
-The petition lacks merit.
-The writ of habeas corpus has been devised as a
speedy and effective remedy to relieve persons from
unlawful restraint. It is a summary remedy and does not
act upon the prisoner who seeks relief but upon the
person who holds him in what is alleged to be the
unlawful authority. The writ cannot be used to investigate
and consider questions of error that might be raised
relating to procedure or on the merits.
-Habeas corpus cannot be issued as a writ of error or as
a means of reviewing errors of law and irregularities not
involving the question of jurisdiction occurring during the
course of the trial, subject to the caveat that constitutional
safeguards of human life and liberty must be preserved
and not destroyed. The object of the writ is to inquire into
the legality of the detention and if the same is found to be
illegal, require the release of the detainee.

-The writ will not issue when the person it is sought for is
on bail or in the custody of an officer under process
issued by a court or judge with jurisdiction or by virtue of
a judgment or order of a court of record.
-In the case at bar, contrary to the position of the
petitioner, respondent Judge was empowered to conduct
preliminary investigation as it is within a crime cognizable
by the court in its respective territorial jurisdiction. His
authority is provided in Sec. 2 of Rule 112 of the Rules of
Criminal Procedure.
-Under Section 6(b) of Rule 112of the Revised Rules of
Criminal Procedure, the investigating judge could issue a
warrant of arrest during the preliminary investigation even
without awaiting its conclusion should he find after an
examination in writing and under oath of the complainant
and the witnesses in the form of searching questions and
answers that a probable cause existed, and that there
was a necessity of placing the respondent under
immediate custody in order not to frustrate the ends of
-It is relevant to point out at this juncture that the
authority of the MTC and MTCC judges to conduct
preliminary investigations was removed only
effective on October 3, 2005 pursuant to A.M. No. 058-26-SC.

-With Mangilas arrest and detention being by virtue of the

order lawfully issued by Judge Pangilinan, the writ of
habeas corpus was not an appropriate remedy to relieve
her from restraint on her libertybeing lawful, it cannot
be inquired into through habeas corpus.
-And, lastly, it was clear that under Section 5,16 Rule 112
of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, the
resolution of the investigating judge was not final but was
still subject to the review by the public prosecutor who
had the power to order the release of the detainee if no
probable cause should be ultimately found against her.
-The CA decision is AFFIRMED.
-Petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the rules of court
assailing the RTC decision which denied the petition for
Habeas Corpus filed by petitioner Nurhida Ampatuan in
behalf of her husband PO1 Basser Ampatuan.
-PO1 Ampatuan was assigned in Sultan Kudarat
Municipal Police Station and on April 2008 he was
directed to stay at the Police Provincial Office of
Maguindanao without being informed of the cause of his
retraint. The next day, he was brought to Manila where a
press briefing was conducted and it was announced that

PO1 Ampatuan was arrested for the killing of two

Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Officials.
-He was then detained at the Police Jail in Manila and
was brought to inquest Prosecutor Gonzaga due to the
alleged murder of Atty. Dalaig of the COMELEC. He was
later turned over to the Regional HQ in Camp Bagong
-On April 21, 2008, Chief Inquest Prosecutor Salva
ordered the release for further investigation of PO1
Ampatuan. But Police Senior Supt. Yee Jr. and Police
Chief Inspector Quimson refused to release PO1
Ampatuan. This prompted the petition for the writ of
habeas corpus in the RTC of Manila.
-The respondents had another version of facts where they
narrated that an investigation conducted by the Manila
Police yielded the identity of PO1 Ampatuan as the
perpetrator for the death of Atty. Dalaig. That PO1
Ampatuan was commanded to MPD for proper
disposition and an inquest proceeding was conducted.
And on the 18 of April, Police Senior Supt. Atty. Guinto
rendered his pre-charge evaluation report against PO1
Ampatuan finding probable cause to charge the same
with grave misconduct (murder) and recommended him
to be subject to a summary hearing.
-The RTC through respondent Judge ordered the

issuance of the writ and commanded private respondents

to produce the body of PO1 Ampatuan and to show
cause why they are withholding the same. Pursuant to
this, the respondents assert that Ampatuan was under
restrictive custody since he is facing an administrative
case for grave misconduct. With that the RTC dismissed
the petition for habeas corpus.
-The writ of habeas corpus applies to all cases of illegal
confinement or detention by which a person is deprived
of his liberty and Rule 102 of the Rules of Court sets forth
the procedure to be followed in the issuance of the writ.
The objective of the writ is to determine whether the
confinement or detention is valid or lawful. If it is lawful,
the writ cannot be issuedwhen the custody over the
person is by virtue of a judicial process or a valid
-The basic criterion is that the individual seeking relief is
illegally deprived of his freedom of movement or place
under some illegal restraint.
-Judicial discretion is called for in its issuance and it must
be clear to the judge to whom the petition is presented
that, prima facie, the petitioner is entitled to the writ. It is

only if the court is satisfied that a person is being

unlawfully restrained of his liberty will the petition for
habeas corpus be granted. If the respondents are not
detaining or restraining the applicant or the person in
whose behalf the petition is filed, the petition should be
-In the case at bar, PO1 Ampatuan has been placed
under Restrictive CustodyRA No. 6975 which clearly
provides that members of the police force are subject to
the administrative disciplinary machinery of the PNP. It is
a valid argument for his continued detention

regardless of the fact that his release was ordered

based on the criminal charge by the Chief Inquest
-Restrictive custody is, at best, nominal restraint which is
beyond the ambit of habeas corpus. It is a permissible
precautionary measure to assure the PNP authorities that
the police officers concerned are always accounted for.
And since his restrictive custody is based on
administrative case filed against him, his remedy is within
such administrative process.
-The petition is DISMISSED for lack of merit.