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REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS

(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)

CRIMINAL JURISDICTION TO RULE 112


CASE DIGESTS
I.

CRIMINAL JURISDICTION

1.

PEOPLE VS MARIANO

Principle:

It is a settled rule that the jurisdiction of a court


is determined by the statute in force at the time
of the commencement of the action. The
conferment of jurisdiction upon courts or judicial
tribunals is derived exclusively from the
constitution and statutes of the forum.

charge against Mayor Nolasco before the Military


Commission. Estafa and malversation are two separate
and distinct offenses and in the case now before us the
accused in one is different from the accused in the other.
But more fundamental is the fact that We do not have
here a situation involving two tribunals vested with
concurrent jurisdiction over a particular crime so as to
apply the rule that the court or tribunal which first takes
cognizance of the case acquires jurisdiction thereof
exclusive of the other. The Military Commission is
without power or authority to hear and determine the
particular offense charged against respondent Mariano,
hence, there is no concurrent jurisdiction between it and
respondent court to speak of. Estafa as described in the
Information filed in Criminal Case No. SM-649 falls
within the sole exclusive jurisdiction of civil courts.

2.

Facts:
The office of the Provincial Fiscal of Bulacan filed an
Information
accusing private respondent herein
Hermogenes Mariano, Liaison Officer of incumbent
Municipal Mayor, Constantino Nolasco, of estafa for
misappropriating and converting to his own personal
use and benefit items valued at $717.50 or P4,797.35,
belonging to USAID/NEC, to the damage and prejudice of
the said owner in the said sum of $717,50 or P4,797.35.
In his motion to quash, Mariano claimed that the items
which were the subject matter of the Information against
him were the same items for which Mayor Constantino A.
Nolasco of San Jose del Monte, province of Bulacan, was
indicted before a Military Commission under a charge of
malversation of public property, and for which Mayor
Nolasco had been found guilty. He argued that inasmuch
as the case against Mayor Nolasco had already been
decided by the Military Tribunal, the Court of First
Instance of Bulacan had lost jurisdiction over the case
against him.
ISSUE: Whether or not civil courts and military
commissions exercise concurrent jurisdiction over the
offense of estafa of goods valued at not more than six
thousand pesos and allegedly committed by a civilian

HELD:
Respondent court therefore gravely erred when it ruled
that it lost jurisdiction over the estafa case against
respondent Mariano with the filing of the malversation
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HONRALES VS HONRALES
(G.R.182651 8/25/2010)

Principle :

Once jurisdiction is acquired by the court in


which the Information is filed, it is there
retained.

Facts:
Respondent Jonathan Honorales was charged of
parricide when she shot her wife, Jane Honorales.
Assistant City Prosecutor Rebagay then issued a
recommendation of withdrawing the parricide and
instead respondent be charged only of reckless
imprudence
resulting
to
parricide.
While the motion to withdraw the information was still
pending, a new information for reckless imprudence was
filed with the MTC against respondent. The heirs
meanwhile filed for a petition for review with the Office
of the President for the downgrading of the offense.
While the motion to withdraw was still pending,
respondent pleaded guilty and was found guilty with the
MTC for reckless imprudence. He also filed a motion to
dismiss his parricide case with the RTC citing that his
arraignment and judgment as grounds for dismissal.
Heirs then filed a certiorari with the CA as the RTC judge
granted respondent's motion to withdraw arguing that
an appeal was still pending. CA denied the certiorari and
cited
that
double
jeopardy
would
attach.

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
Petitioner argues that MTC did not acquire jurisdiction
and it remained in the RTC.

Issue :

Whether MeTC or RTC has jurisdiction over the

case.

Held:
In this case, the MeTC took cognizance of the Information
for reckless imprudence resulting in parricide while the
criminal case for parricide was still pending before the
RTC. In Dioquino v. Cruz, Jr., we held that once
jurisdiction is acquired by the court in which the
Information is filed, it is there retained. Therefore, as the
offense of reckless imprudence resulting in parricide was
included in the charge for intentional parricide pending
before the RTC, the MeTC clearly had no jurisdiction over
the criminal case filed before it, the RTC having retained
jurisdiction over the offense to the exclusion of all other
courts. The requisite that the judgment be rendered by a
court of competent jurisdiction is therefore absent.
A decision rendered without jurisdiction is not a decision
in contemplation of law and can never become executory.

3.

SERNA VS SANDIGANBAYAN

Principle :

P.D. No. 1606 explicitly vest the Sandiganbayan


with jurisdiction over Presidents, directors or
trustees, or managers of government-owned or
controlled corporations, state universities or
educational institutions or foundations.

Facts:

peers; 2.) that she was a simple student and did not
receive any salary as a UP student regent; and 3.) she
does not fall under Salary Grade 27.
The Ombudsman contends that petitioner, as a member
of the BOR is a public officer, since she had the general
powers of administration and exercise the corporate
powers of UP. Compensation is not an essential part of
public office.
Moreover, the Charter of the University of the Philippines
reveals that the Board of Regents, to which accusedmovant belongs, exclusively exercises the general
powers of administration and corporate powers in the
university. It is well-established in corporation law that
the corporation can act only through its board of
directors, or board of trustees in the case of non-stock
corporations.
Issue: Whether a government scholar and UP student
regent is a public officer.
Held:
Yes.
First, Public office is the right, authority, and duty created
and conferred by law, by which for a given period, either
fixed by law or enduring at the pleasure of the creating
power, an individual is invested with some portion of the
sovereign functions of the government, to be exercise by
him for the benefit of the public. The individual so
invested is a public officer. (Laurel vs Desierto)
Delegation of sovereign functions is essential in the
public office. An investment in an individual of some
portion of the sovereign functions of the government, to
be exercised by him for the benefit of the public makes
one a public officer.

Serana is a government scholar and a student regent of


the University of the Phillipines charged with Estafa .
While in the performance of her official functions, she
represented to former President Estrada that the
renovation of the Vinzons Hall of the UP will be
renovated and renamed as Pres. Joseph Ejercito Estrada
Student Hall and for which purpose accused requested
the amount of P15,000,000.00.

Second, Section 4(A)(1)(g) of P.D. No. 1606 explicitly vest


the Sandiganbayan with jurisdiction over Presidents,
directors or trustees, or managers of government-owned
or controlled corporations, state universities or
educational institutions or foundations. Hence, it is not
only the salary grade that determines the jurisdiction of
the Sandiganbayan.

Petitioner claims that the Sandiganbayan had no


jurisdiction over her person because as a UP student
regent, she was not a public officer due to the following:
1.) that being merely a member in representation of the
student body since she merely represented her

As the Sandiganbayan pointed out, the BOR performs


functions similar to those of a board of trustees of a nonstock corporation. By express mandate of law, petitioner
is a public officer as contemplated by P.D. No. 1606 the
statute defining the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan.

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Third, it is well established that compensation is not an
essential element of public office. At most, it is merely
incidental to the public office.
Hence, Petitioner is a public officer by express mandate
of P.D.No. 1606 and jurisprudence.

4.
5.
6.

7.

PEOPLE VS MONTEJO (108 SCRA


652)
BARRIGA VS SANDIGANBAYAN
(4/26/2005)
LACSON VS EXECUTIVE
SECRETARY (301 SCRA 298)

Undoubtedly, in vesting in family courts exclusive


original jurisdiction over criminal cases involving
minors, the law but seeks to protect their welfare
and best interests. For this reason, when the need for
such protection is not compromised, the Court is able
to relax the rule.
Here, the two minor victims, for whose interests the
people wanted the murder cases moved to a family court,
are dead. As respondents aptly point out, there is no
living minor in the murder cases that require the special
attention and protection of a family court. In fact, no
minor would appear as party in those cases during trial
since the minor victims are represented by their parents
who had become the real private offended parties.

PEOPLE VS YADAO (265 SCRA 204)


8.

Facts:
A number of high ranking police officers (including
Panfilo Lacson) were implicated in the murder of 11
alleged members of the Kuratong-baleleng gang.
The case was filed with the regular court. However,
evidence were submitted showing that two of the
deceased victims are minors. This prompted the
prosecution to amend the information and file motion for
re-raffle of the case with the family court. The motion
was denied on the ground that the minor-victims were
already dead.
Issue: WON the family court has jurisdiction.
Ruling:
Yes. The Court is not impervious to the provisions of
Section 5 of R.A. 8369, that vest in family courts
jurisdiction over violations of R.A. 7610, which in turn
covers murder cases where the victim is a minor. Thus:
Sec. 5. Jurisdiction of Family Courts. The Family
Courts shall have exclusive original jurisdiction to
hear and decide the following cases: a) Criminal
cases where one or more of the accused is below
eighteen (18) years of age but not less than nine
(9) years of age, or where one or more of the
victims is a minor at the time of the
commission of the offense: Provided, That if the
minor is found guilty, the court shall promulgate
sentence and ascertain any civil liability which the
respondent may have incurred.

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GARCIA VS DRILON (VAWC CASE)

Facts:
Ms. Garcia filed an application for TRO against her
husband, pursuant to R.A. 9262 (VAWC). She claimed to
be a victim of violence. The RTC (acting as family court)
granted the application.
Thus, Mr. Garcia filed before the CA a petition for
prohibition and assails the constitutionality of the RA
9262 for violating the due process and equal protection
clauses. CA dismissed the petition on the ground that it
was not raised at the earliest opportunity, i.e., at the trial
in the family court. The petitioner, on the other hand
avers that it could not raise the issue of constitutionality
before the family court as it would constitute a collateral
attack on the statute and that the family court acting as a
special court has no authority to determine issue of
constitutionality.
Issue: Does the family court, acting on special
jurisdiction have the authority to pass on the
constitutionality of VAWC?
Ruling:
Family Courts have authority and jurisdiction to
consider the constitutionality of a statute.
At the outset, it must be stressed that Family Courts are
special courts, of the same level as Regional Trial Courts.
Under R.A. 8369, otherwise known as the "Family Courts
Act of 1997," family courts have exclusive original
jurisdiction to hear and decide cases of domestic violence
against women and children.

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
Inspite of its designation as a family court, the RTC of
Bacolod City remains possessed of authority as a
court of general original jurisdiction to pass upon all
kinds of cases whether civil, criminal, special
proceedings,
land
registration,
guardianship,
naturalization, admiralty or insolvency. It is settled that
RTCs
have
jurisdiction
to
resolve
the
constitutionality of a statute, "this authority being
embraced in the general definition of the judicial
power to determine what the valid and binding laws
are by the criterion of their conformity to the
fundamental law."

Ruling:
Yes. There is no question that Act No. 3326,
appropriately entitled An Act to Establish Prescription for
Violations of Special Acts and Municipal Ordinances and to
Provide When Prescription Shall Begin, is the law
applicable to offenses under special laws which do not
provide their own prescriptive periods. Thus;
We agree that Act. No. 3326 applies to offenses
under B.P. Blg. 22. An offense under B.P. Blg.
22 merits the penalty of imprisonment of not
less than thirty (30) days but not more than
one year or by a fine, hence, under Act No.
3326, a violation of B.P. Blg. 22 prescribes in
four (4) years from the commission of the
offense or, if the same be not known at the
time,
from
the
discovery
thereof.
Nevertheless, we cannot uphold the
position that only the filing of a case in
court can toll the running of the
prescriptive period.

The Constitution vests the power of judicial review or


the power to declare the constitutionality or validity of a
law, treaty, international or executive agreement,
presidential decree, order, instruction, ordinance, or
regulation not only in this Court, but in all RTCs.

II.

RULE 110 (PROSECUTION OF


OFFENSES)

9.

PANAGUITON VS DOJ
(11/25/2008)

Facts:
Cawili and Tongson borrowed money from Panaguiton
and later issued checks as payment. But checks were
dishonored.
After the 1995 demand to pay failed, Panaguiton filed a
complaint against Cawili and Tongson for violating BP
Blg. 22 before the Prosecutor's Office on June 1995.
The DOJ's flip-flopping resolutions took the case 9 years
on preliminary investigation stage until it finally settle
the issue holding that the case had already prescribed
pursuant to Act. No. 3326 (which gives the BP22 a
prescription of 4 years).
It states that in this case the 4 year period started on the
date the checks were dishonored and that the filing of
complaint in the prosecutor's office did not interrupt the
running of the prescriptive period as the law (RA 3326)
contemplates judicial and not administrative
proceedings.
Issue: Whether the filing of the affidavit-complaint for
violation of BP Blg. 22 against respondent with the Office
of the City Prosecutor interrupted the period of
prescription of such offense.
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While it may be observed that the term "judicial


proceedings" in Sec. 2 of Act No. 3326 appears before
"investigation and punishment" in the old law, with the
subsequent change in set-up whereby the investigation
of the charge for purposes of prosecution has become the
exclusive function of the executive branch, the term
"proceedings" should now be understood either
executive or judicial in character: executive when it
involves the investigation phase and judicial when it
refers to the trial and judgment stage. With this
clarification, any kind of investigative proceeding
instituted against the guilty person which may ultimately
lead to his prosecution should be sufficient to toll
prescription.

10.

SEC VS INTERPORT (10/6/2008)

PRICIPLE:

It is well settled that every law has in its favor the


presumption of validity. Unless and until a
specific provision of the law is declared invalid
and unconstitutional, the same is valid and
binding for all intents and purposes.

It is an established doctrine that a preliminary


investigation interrupts the prescription period.

FACTS:

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
Securities and Exchange Commission ordered
an Omnibus order which aims to create a special
investigation panel to investigate an insider trading.

authorities have the power to promulgate rules


and regulations to implement a given statute
and to effectuate its policies, provided such
rules and regulations conform to the terms and
standards prescribed by the statute as well as
purport to carry into effect its general policies.
Nevertheless, it is undisputable that the rules
and regulations cannot assert for themselves a
more extensive prerogative or deviate from the
mandate of the statute. Moreover, where the
statute contains sufficient standards and an
unmistakable intent, as in the case of Sections
30 and 36 of the Revised Securities Act, there
should
be
no
impediment
to
its
implementation.

Respondents then filed a petition before the CA


questioning the Omnibus Order. CA granted their motion
and issued a writ of preliminary injunction, which
effectively enjoined the SEC from filing any criminal, civil
or administrative case against the respondents.
ISSUES:
1.

2.

Whether the absence of implementing rules of


Revised Securities Act violates due process
and equal protection of the respondents. (NO)
Whether the instant case has already
prescribed. (NO, PI interrupts the prescriptive
period)

The Court of Appeals made an evident


mistake when it ruled that no civil, criminal or

RULING:
1.

administrative actions can possibly be had


In the absence of any constitutional or
statutory infirmity, which may concern
Sections 30 and 36 of the Revised Securities
Act, this Court upholds these provisions as legal
and binding. It is well settled that every law has
in its favor the presumption of validity. Unless
and until a specific provision of the law is
declared invalid and unconstitutional, the same
is valid and binding for all intents and
purposes. The mere absence of implementing
rules cannot effectively invalidate provisions of
law, where a reasonable construction that will
support the law may be given.
The
necessity
for
vesting
administrative authorities with power to make
rules and regulations is based on the
impracticability of lawmakers providing
general regulations for various and varying
details of management. To rule that the
absence of implementing rules can render
ineffective an act of Congress, such as the
Revised Securities Act, would empower the
administrative bodies to defeat the legislative
will by delaying the implementing rules. To
assert that a law is less than a law, because it is
made to depend on a future event or act, is to
rob the Legislature of the power to act wisely
for the public welfare whenever a law is passed
relating to a state of affairs not yet developed,
or to things future and impossible to fully
know. It is well established that administrative

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against the respondents in connection with


Sections 8, 30 and 36 of the Revised Securities
Act due to the absence of implementing
rules. These provisions are sufficiently clear
and

complete

by

themselves. Their

requirements are specifically set out, and the


acts which are enjoined are determinable. In
particular, Section 8 of the Revised Securities
Act is a straightforward enumeration of the
procedure for the registration of securities and
the particular matters which need to be
reported

in

the

registration

statement

thereof. The Decision, dated 20 August 1998,


provides no valid reason to exempt the
respondent IRC from such requirements. The
lack of implementing rules cannot suspend
the effectivity of these provisions. Thus, this
Court cannot find any cogent reason to prevent
the SEC from exercising its authority to
investigate respondents for violation of Section
8 of the Revised Securities Act.
2.

Respondents have taken the position that this


case is moot and academic, since any criminal
complaint that may be filed against them
resulting from the SECs investigation of this
case has already prescribed. They point out
that the prescription period applicable to

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
offenses punished under special laws, such as

person has violated the Revised Securities Act,

violations of the Revised Securities Act, is

the SEC may refer the case to the DOJ for

twelve years under Section 1 of Act No. 3326, as

preliminary investigation and prosecution.

amended by Act No. 3585 and Act No. 3763,


entitled An Act to Establish Periods of

While the SEC investigation serves

Prescription for Violations Penalized by Special

the same purpose and entails substantially

Acts and Municipal Ordinances and to Provide

similar duties as the preliminary investigation

When Prescription Shall Begin to Act. Since the

conducted by the DOJ, this process cannot

offense was committed in 1994, they reasoned

simply

that prescription set in as early as 2006 and

disregarded. In Baviera v. Paglinawan, this

rendered this case moot. Such position,

Court enunciated that a criminal complaint is

however, is incongruent with the factual

first filed with the SEC, which determines the

circumstances of this case, as well as the

existence

applicable laws and jurisprudence.

preliminary investigation can be commenced


by

It is an established doctrine that a

be

of probable

the

DOJ. In

cause,

before

the aforecited case,

a
the

complaint filed directly with the DOJ was

the

dismissed on the ground that it should have

preliminary

been filed first with the SEC. Similarly, the

investigation is essentially a determination

offense was a violation of the Securities

whether an offense has been committed, and

Regulations Code, wherein the procedure for

whether there is probable cause for the accused

criminal prosecution was reproduced from

to have committed an offense:

Section 45 of the Revised Securities Act.

preliminary

investigation

prescription

period. A

interrupts

A preliminary investigation
is merely inquisitorial, and it
is often the only means of
discovering the persons
who may be reasonably
charged with a crime, to
enable the fiscal to prepare
the
complaint
or
information. It is not a trial
of the case on the merits and
has no purpose except that
of determining whether a
crime has been committed
or
whether
there is
probable cause to believe
that the accused is guilty
thereof.

Indubitably, the prescription period is


interrupted by commencing the proceedings
for the prosecution of the accused. In criminal
cases, this is accomplished by initiating the
preliminary investigation. The prosecution of
offenses

under

the

Revised

Code is initiated by the filing of a complaint


with the SEC or by an investigation conducted
by the SEC motu proprio. Only after a finding of
probable cause is made by the SEC can the DOJ
instigate a preliminary investigation. Thus, the
investigation that was commenced by the SEC
in

Under Section 45 of the Revised

punishable

Securities Act and the Securities Regulations

1995,

soon

questionable

after it discovered

acts

the

of

the

respondents,

interrupted

the

prescription

Securities Act, which is entitled Investigations,

effectively

Injunctions and Prosecution of Offenses, the

period. Given the nature and purpose of the

Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) has the

investigation conducted by the SEC, which is

authority to make such investigations as it

equivalent to the preliminary investigation

deems necessary to determine whether any

conducted by the DOJ in criminal cases, such

person has violated or is about to violate any

investigation would surely interrupt the

provision of this Act XXX. After a finding that a

prescription period.

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The Petition is denied.
11.

JADEWELL PARKING SYSTEM VS


LIDUA, SR. (G.R. 169588
10/7/2013) CITY ORDINANCE

PRICIPLE:

Under Section 9 of the Rule [sic] on Summary


Procedure, the running of the prescriptive
period shall be halted on the date the case is
filed in Court and not on any date before that.

FACTS:
On October 2, 2003, two criminal Informations
were filed with the MTC Baguio City.
Respondent Benedicto Balajadia and the other
accused filed a Motion to Quash and/or
Manifestation which sought the quashal of the two
Informations on the following grounds: extinguishment
of criminal action or liability due to prescription; failure
of the Information to state facts that charged an offense;
and the imposition of charges on respondents with more
than one offense.
Respondent Judge Lidua, Sr., Presiding Judge of
the MTC of Baguio City, granted the accused's Motion to
Quash and dismissed the cases. Petitioner filed MR but
was denied.
Petitioner then filed a Petition for Certiorari
under Rule 65 with the RTC of Baguio City. Petitioners
argued that the respondent judge ruled erroneously
saying that the prescriptive period for the offenses
charged against the private respondents was halted by
the filing of the Complaint/Information in court and not
when the Affidavit-Complaints were filed with the Office
of the City Prosecutor of Baguio City.
RTC of Baguio dismissed the Petition for
Certiorari. It held that, since cases of city ordinance
violations may only be commenced by the filing of an
Information, then the two-month prescription period
may only be interrupted by the filing of Informations
against the respondents in court. Hence, this petition.
ISSUE: Whether the filing of the Complaint with the
Office of the City Prosecutor tolled the prescription
period of the commission of the offense charged against
respondents. (NO)
RULING:
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The resolution of this case requires an examination of


both the substantive law and the procedural rules
governing the prosecution of the offense. With regard to
the prescription period, Act No. 3326, as amended, is the
only statute that provides for any prescriptive period for
the violation of special laws and municipal ordinances.
No other special law provides any other prescriptive
period, and the law does not provide any other
distinction. Petitioner may not argue that Act No. 3326 as
amended does not apply.
In resolving the issue of prescription of the offense
charged, the following should be considered: (1) the
period of prescription for the offense charged; (2) the
time the period of prescription starts to run; and (3) the
time the prescriptive period was interrupted.
With regard to the period of prescription, it is now
without question that it is two months for the offense
charged under City Ordinance 003-2000.

12.

REODICA VS CA PUNISHED BY
RPC BUT COVERED BY SUMMARY
PROCEDURE

PRICIPLE:

The jurisdiction to try a criminal action is to be


determined by the law in force at the time of the
institution of the action, unless the statute
expressly provides, or is construed to the effect
that it is intended to operate as to actions
pending before its enactment.

It must be stressed that prescription in criminal


cases is a matter of substantive law. Pursuant to Section
5(5), Article VIII of the Constitution, this Court, in the
exercise of its rule-making power, is not allowed to
diminish, increase or modify substantive rights. Hence, in
case of conflict between the Rule on Summary Procedure
promulgated by this Court and the Revised Penal Code, the
latter prevails.
FACTS:
An information was filed before the RTC of
Makati charging petitioner (Reodica) with Reckless
Imprudence Resulting in Damage to Property with Slight
Physical Injury.
Upon arraignment, petitioner pleaded not
guilty to the charge. Trial then ensued.
7

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
RTC rendered a decision convicting petitioner of
the quasi offense of reckless imprudence resulting in
damage to property with slight physical injuries, and
sentencing her to suffer imprisonment of six (6) months
of arresto mayor, and to pay the complainant, Norberto
Bonsol, the sum of P13,542 without subsidiary
impairment in case of insolvency.
Petitioner appealed from the decision to the
CA. After her motions for extension of time to file her
brief were granted, she filed a Motion to Withdraw
Appeal for Probation Purposes, and to Suspend, Ex
Abundanti Cautela, Period for Filing Appellants
Brief. However, respondent CA denied this motion and
directed petitioner to file her brief.
CA affirmed.

ISSUES:
1.

2.

3.

Whether the duplicity of the information may


be questioned for the first time on appeal.
(NO)
Whether the Regional Trial Court had
jurisdiction over the offenses in question. (NO,
MTC-BP 129)
Whether the quasi offenses in question have
already prescribed. (NO)

RULING:
1.
Following Lontok, the conclusion is inescapable here,
that the quasi offense of reckless imprudence resulting in
slight physical injuries should have been charged in a
separate information because it is not covered by Article
48 of the Revised Penal Code. However, petitioner may
no longer question, at this stage, the duplicitous
character of the information, i.e., charging two separate
offenses in one information, to wit: (1) reckless
imprudence resulting in damage to property; and (2)
reckless imprudence resulting in slight physical
injuries. This defect was deemed waived by her failure to
raise it in a motion to quash before she pleaded to the
information. Under Section 3, Rule 120 of the Rules of
Court, when two or more offenses are charged in a single
complaint or information and the accused fails to object
to it before trial, the court may convict the accused of as
many offenses as are charged and proved and impose on
him the penalty for each of them
2.

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The jurisdiction to try a criminal action is to be


determined by the law in force at the time of the
institution of the action, unless the statute expressly
provides, or is construed to the effect that it is intended
to operate as to actions pending before its enactment.
At the time of the filing of the information in this
case, the law in force was Batas Pambansa Blg. 129,
otherwise known as The Judiciary Reorganization Act of
1980. Section 32(2) thereof provided that except in cases
falling within the exclusive original jurisdiction of the
Regional Trial Courts and of the Sandiganbayan, the
Metropolitan Trial Courts (MeTCs), Municipal Trial
Courts (MTCs), and Municipal Circuit Trial Courts
(MCTCs) had exclusive original jurisdiction over all
offenses punishable with imprisonment of not exceeding
four years and two months, or a fine of not more than
four thousand pesos, or both fine and imprisonment,
regardless of other imposable accessory or other
penalties, including the civil liability arising from such
offenses or predicated thereon, irrespective of kind,
nature, value or amount thereof.
The criminal jurisdiction of the lower courts was
then determined by the duration of the imprisonment
and the amount of fine prescribed by law for the offense
charged. The question thus arises as to which court has
jurisdiction over offenses punishable by censure, such as
reckless imprudence resulting in slight physical injuries.

3.
Pursuant to Article 90 of the Revised Penal Code, reckless
imprudence resulting in slight physical injuries, being a
light felony, prescribes in two months. On the other hand,
reckless imprudence resulting in damage to property in
the amount of P8,542.00, being a less grave felony whose
penalty is arresto mayor in its minimum and medium
periods, prescribes in five years.
To resolve the issue of whether these quasi offenses have
already prescribed, it is necessary to determine whether
the filing of the complaint with the fiscals office three
days after the incident in question tolled the running of
the prescriptive period.
Article 91 of the Revised Penal Code provides:
ART. 91. Computation of prescription
of
offenses. -- The
period
of
prescription shall commence to run
from the day on which the crime is
discovered by the offended party, the
authorities, or their agents, and shall
be interrupted by the filing of the
complaint or information, and shall
commence to run again when such
proceedings terminate without the

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
accused being convicted or acquitted,
or are unjustifiably stopped by any
reason
not
imputable
to
him. (emphasis supplied)
Notably, the aforequoted article, in declaring that the
prescriptive period shall be interrupted by the filing of
the complaint or information, does not distinguish
whether the complaint is filed for preliminary
examination or investigation only or for an action on the
merits. Thus, in Francisco v. Court of Appeals and People
v. Cuaresma, this Court held that the filing of the
complaint even with the fiscals office suspends the
running of the statute of limitations.
We cannot apply Section 9 of the Rule on Summary
Procedure, which provides that in cases covered thereby,
such as offenses punishable by imprisonment not
exceeding 6 months, as in the instant case, the
prosecution commences by the filing of a complaint or
information directly with the MeTC, RTC or MCTC
without need of a prior preliminary examination or
investigation; provided that in Metropolitan Manila and
Chartered Cities, said cases may be commenced only by
information. However, this Section cannot be taken to
mean that the prescriptive period is interrupted only by
the filing of a complaint or information directly with said
courts.
It must be stressed that prescription in criminal cases is
a matter of substantive law. Pursuant to Section 5(5),
Article VIII of the Constitution, this Court, in the exercise
of its rule-making power, is not allowed to diminish,
increase or modify substantive rights. Hence, in case of
conflict between the Rule on Summary Procedure
promulgated by this Court and the Revised Penal Code,
the latter prevails.
Neither does Zaldivia control in this instance. It must be
recalled that what was involved therein was a violation
of a municipal ordinance; thus, the applicable law was
not Article 91 of the Revised Penal Code, but Act. No.
3326, as amended, entitled An Act to Establish Periods of
Prescription for Violations Penalized by Special Acts and
Municipal Ordinances and to Provide When Prescription
Shall Begin to Run. Under Section 2 thereof, the period of
prescription is suspended only when judicial
proceedings are instituted against the guilty
party. Accordingly, this Court held that the prescriptive
period was not interrupted by the filing of the complaint
with the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor, as such did
not constitute a judicial proceeding; what could have
tolled the prescriptive period there was only the filing of
the information in the proper court.
In the instant case, as the offenses involved are covered
by the Revised Penal Code, Article 91 thereof and the
rulings
in Francisco and Cuaresma apply. Thus,
the
prescriptive period for the quasi offenses in question
was interrupted by the filing of the complaint with the
fiscals office three days after the vehicular mishap and
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remained tolled pending the termination of this case. We


cannot, therefore, uphold petitioners defense of
prescription of the offenses charged in the information in
this case.

13.

PEOPLE VS MANABA

PRINCIPLE:

Whether the defendant was placed in jeopardy


for the second time or not when he was tried in
the present case depends on whether or not he
was tried on a valid complaint in the first case.

The first complaint filed against the defendant


was signed and sworn to by the chief of police.
As it was not the complaint of the offended
party, it was not a valid complaint in
accordance with the law. The judgment of the
court was therefore void for lack of jurisdiction
over the subject matter, and the defendant was
never in jeopardy.

FACTS:
On May 10, 1932, the chief of police of Dumaguete
subscribed and swore to a criminal complaint charging
Pedro Manaba with the crime of rape, committed against
Celestina Adapon before the justice of the peace of
Dumaguete and in due course, the case reached the CFI.
The accused was tried and convicted, but on motion of
the defendants attorney, the judgment was set aside and
the case dismissed on the ground that the court had no
jurisdiction over the person of the defendant or the
subject matter of the action, because the complaint had
not been filed by the offended party, but by the chief of
police (Criminal case No. 1801).
On August 17, 1932, the offended girl subscribed and
swore to a complaint charging the defendant with the
crime of rape. This was filed in the CFI (Criminal case No.
1872), but was referred to the justice of the peace of
Dumaguete for preliminary investigation. The defendant
waived his right to the preliminary investigation, but
asked for the dismissal of the complaint on the ground
that he had previously been placed in jeopardy for the
same offense. This motion was denied by the justice of
the peace, and the case was remanded to the CFI where
the provincial fiscal in an information charged the
defendant with having committed the crime of rape.
The defendant renewed his motion for dismissal in the
case on the ground of double jeopardy, but his motion
was denied; and upon the termination of the trial, the
defendant was found guilty and sentenced to suffer the
penalty of 17 years and 4 months of reclusion temporal,

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
and the accessory penalties of the law, to indemnify the
offended party, in the amount of P500, to maintain the
offspring, if any, at P5 a month until said offspring should
become of age, and to pay the costs.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the accused can invoke double jeopardy.
RULING:
No. Whether the defendant was placed in jeopardy for
the second time or not when he was tried in the present
case depends on whether or not he was tried on a valid
complaint in the first case. The offense in question was
committed on May 9, 1932, or subsequent to the date
when the Revised Penal Code became effective.
The third paragraph of the article 344 of the Revised
Penal Code, which relates to the prosecution of the
crimes of adultery, concubinage, seduction, rape and acts
of lasciviousness reads as follows:
The offenses of seduction, abduction, rape or acts of
lasciviousness, shall not be prosecuted except upon a
complaint filed by the offended party or her parents,
grandparents, or guardian, nor, in any case, if the
offender has been expressly pardoned by the above-named
persons, as the case may be.
The Spanish equivalent of the word "filed" is not found in
the Spanish text, which is controlling, as it was the
Spanish text of the Revised Penal Code that was
approved by the Legislature.
The first complaint filed against the defendant was
signed and sworn to by the chief of police of Dumaguete.
As it was not the complaint of the offended party, it was
not a valid complaint in accordance with the law. The
judgment of the court was therefore void for lack of
jurisdiction over the subject matter, and the defendant
was never in jeopardy.
It might be observed in this connection that the
judgment was set aside and the case dismissed on the
motion of defendant's attorney, who subsequently set
up the plea of double jeopardy in the present case.

14. PEOPLE VS FLORES (12/7/2002)


PRINCIPLE:
It is settled that what characterizes the charge
is the actual recital of facts in the complaint or
information. For every crime is made up of
certain acts and intent which must be set forth
in the complaint or information with
reasonable particularity of time, place, names
(plaintiff and defendant), and circumstances. In
other words, the complaint must contain a

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specific allegation of every fact and


circumstance necessary to constitute the crime
charged, the accused being presumed to have
no independent knowledge of the facts that
constitute the offense.
FACTS:
Pedro Flores Jr. y Flores alias Pesiong was charged for
two counts of rape of his then 11 year old daughter. The
criminal complaint read as follows: That xxxxxxxxx the
above-named accused, by means of force and
intimidation, did then and there, willfully, unlawfully,
criminally and feloniously sexually abuse the herein
complaining witness FILIPINA FLORES Y LAZO, 11 years
old, all against her will.
Upon arraignment, accused pleaded not guilty to the
charges. After trial, the court found him guilty of
Statutory Rape and sentenced him to suffer the penalty
of death in each case. In view of the penalty of death
imposed by the trial court, the case reached before the SC
on automatic review.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the accused was denied of his
constitutional right to be informed of the nature and
cause of the accusation against him.
RULING:
Yes. It is at once apparent, from a reading of the abovequoted complaints, that accused-appellant was denied
the constitutional right to be informed of the nature and
cause of the accusation against him. This right has the
following objectives:
1. To furnish the accused with such a description of the
charge against him as will enable him to make the
defense;
2. To avail himself of his conviction or acquittal for
protection against further prosecution for the same
cause;
3. To inform the court of the facts alleged, so that it may
decide whether they are sufficient in law to support a
conviction if one should be had.
The right cannot be waived for reasons of public policy.
Hence, it is imperative that the complaint or information
filed against the accused be complete to meet its
objectives. As such, an indictment must fully state the
elements of the specific offense alleged to have been
committed. For an accused cannot be convicted of an
offense, even if duly proven, unless it is alleged or
necessarily included in the complaint or information.
The court a quo found accused-appellant guilty of
Statutory Rape under Article 335 of the Revised Penal
Code, as amended by R. A. No. 7659 (which restored the

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
death penalty for heinous crimes effective December 31,
1993) which provides:
Article 335. When and how rape is committed.--- Rape
is committed by having carnal knowledge of a woman
under any of the following circumstances:
1. By using force or intimidation;
2. When the woman is deprived of reason or otherwise
unconscious; and
3. When the woman is under twelve years of age or is
demented.
The gravamen of the crime of rape is carnal knowledge
or sexual intercourse between a man and a woman under
the circumstances enumerated in the penal code. Thus,
to sustain a conviction, the complaint or information
must allege that the accused had carnal knowledge of or
sexual intercourse with the private complainant. In the
criminal complaints at bar, however, no such allegation
was made.
The allegation that accused-appellant did sexually abuse
Filipina does not suffice. In the recent case of People v.
Lito Egan alias Akiao, this Court ruled that although the
prosecution has proved that [the therein private
complainant] Lenie was sexually abused, the evidence
proffered is inadequate to establish carnal knowledge.
Hence, sexual abuse cannot be equated with carnal
knowledge or sexual intercourse. The allegation in the
instant criminal complaints that accused-appellant
sexually abuse[d] the private complainant cannot thus be
read to mean that accused-appellant had carnal
knowledge or sexual intercourse with the private
complainant.
This Court is not unaware of the rule in case there is a
variance between allegation and proof as etched in
Section 4 of Rule 120 of the Revised Rules of Criminal
Procedure which reads:
SEC. 4. Judgment in case of variance between allegation
and proof.When there is variance between the offense
charged in the complaint or information and that proved,
and the offense as charged is included in or necessarily
includes the offense proved, the accused shall be
convicted of the offense proved which is included in the
offense charged, or of the offense charged which is
included in the offense proved.
The case at bar, however, is not one of variance between
allegation and proof. The recital of facts in the criminal
complaints simply does not properly charge rape, sexual
abuse not being an essential element or ingredient
thereof.
Neither can accused-appellant be convicted of acts of
lasciviousness or of any offense for that matter under our
penal laws. It is settled that what characterizes the
charge is the actual recital of facts in the complaint or
information. For every crime is made up of certain acts
and intent which must be set forth in the complaint or
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information with reasonable particularity of time, place,


names (plaintiff and defendant), and circumstances. In
other words, the complaint must contain a specific
allegation of every fact and circumstance necessary to
constitute the crime charged, the accused being
presumed to have no independent knowledge of the facts
that constitute the offense.
And even under the provisions of Republic Act No. 7610
(The Special Protection of Children Against Child Abuse,
Exploitation and Discrimination Act),accused-appellant
cannot be held liable.
Section 2 (g) of the Rules and Regulations on the
Reporting and Investigation of Child Abuse Cases, issued
pursuant to Section 32 of Republic Act No. 7610, defines
sexual abuse by inclusion as follows:
Sexual abuse includes 1) the employment, use,
persuasion, enticement, or coercion of a child to
engage in, or assist another person to engage in
sexual intercourse or lascivious conduct or 2) the
molestation, 3) prostitution, or 4) incest with
children. (Underscoring supplied)
From this broad, non-exclusive definition, this Court
finds that the phrase sexually abuse in the criminal
complaints at bar does not comply with the requirement
that the complaint must contain a specific averment of
every fact necessary to constitute the crime. Notably, the
phrase sexual abuse is not used under R.A. No. 7610 as
an elemental fact but as an altogether separate offense.
Section 5 of said law enumerates the punishable acts that
must be alleged in the complaint or information to hold
an accused liable, none of which is reflected in the
complaints at bar charging accused-appellant.

15.

PEOPLE VS VALDESANCHO
(1/30/2001)

PRINCIPLE:

The Court has many times declared that the


date of commission of the rape is not an
essential element of the crime. While this is true
in the cases at bar, the dates when the rapes
were committed are nonetheless essential to
the accused defense of alibi.

In all criminal prosecutions, it is the right of the


accused to be informed of the nature and cause
of the accusation against him. To convict an
accused for an offense not alleged in the
complaint or information violates such right.

FACTS:

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
Vicente Valdesancho y Delmo is the husband of Elvie's
sister, Erlinda. Elvie and her two younger brothers, Erick
and Eddie, lived with their brother. In 1994, however,
Elvie's mother, Leonida Basco, requested the spouses
Valdesancho to let Elvie, Erick and Eddie live in their
house. The three were going to study in Barangay San
Antonio. They resided with the accused from 24 June
1994 to June 1995. Elvie was then 14 years old and in
Grade 1.
The first incident of rape happened in the early morning
of 15 August 1994. Elvie was in the house of Valdesancho
while Erlinda was then in Manila. Valdesancho
succeeded in having carnal knowledge of Elvie,
subsequent to Valdesancho's order to powder his back.
Valdesancho warned her not to reveal the dastardly act
to anybody, otherwise he would kill her and her family.
All this time, Elvie's brothers were sleeping in the other
room.
The second incident of rape happened in the evening of
16 August 1994. Elvie was in the house of Valdesancho
studying. He called Elvie to his room and ordered her to
look under the bed for a chick. Valdesancho again had
carnal knowledge of her against her will. Again,
Valdesancho threatened Elvie not to report the incident
to anybody, otherwise he would kill her and her family.
Elvie kept her harrowing experience to herself for fear
that Valdesancho would carry out his threat.
In September 1995, however, when Elvie was already
residing with her brother and mother, she reported the
rape incidents to her Tiya Soling. She was fearful that
Valdesancho might rape her again. Tiya Soling reported
the rape incidents to Elvie's mother who verified the
story from Elvie herself. On 15 January 1996, Elvie
executed a sworn statement at the Mabitac Police Station
narrating the rape incidents. On 27 March 1996, two
informations were filed against Valdesancho. The
accused denied the rape charges leveled against him. He
contends that Elvie, with the assistance of her mother
Leonida, filed the instant cases against him because of
the serious quarrel between his wife, Erlinda, and
Leonida spurred by Leonida's relationship with a lesbian
named Melita Flores. The trial court upheld the
prosecution's story. The court found the accused guilty
beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of "rape" and
sentenced him to 2 Reclusion Perpetua. Valdesancho
appealed.
ISSUE:
Whether or not Valdesancho was denied of due process
when he was convicted for rape allegedly committed on
August 15 and 16, 1993, when the information alleged
such rapes were committed on August 15 and 16, 1994.
RULING:

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A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

Yes. Article III, Section 14 of the 1987 Constitution


mandates that no person shall be held liable for a
criminal offense without due process of law. It further
provides that in all criminal prosecutions, the accused
shall be informed of the nature and cause of accusation
against him and shall enjoy the right to be heard by
himself and counsel. Similarly, the Revised Rules of
Criminal Procedure, as amended, which took effect on 1
December 2000, provides that in all criminal
prosecutions, it is the right of the accused to be
informed of the nature and cause of the accusation
against him. To convict an accused for an offense not
alleged in the complaint or information violates such
right.
The rationale behind informing the accused in writing of
the charges against him was explained by this Court as
early as 1904 in U.S. v. Karelsen, viz:
"First. To furnish the accused with such a description of the
charge against him as will enable him to make his defense;
and second, to avail himself of his conviction or acquittal
for protection against a further prosecution for the same
cause; and third, to inform the court of the facts alleged, so
that it may decide whether they are sufficient in law to
support a conviction, if one should be had (United States
vs. Cruikshank, 92 U.S. 542). In order that this
requirement may be satisfied, facts must be stated,
not conclusions of law. Every crime is made up of
certain acts and intent; these must be set forth in the
complaint with reasonable particularity of time,
place, names (plaintiff and defendant), and
circumstances. In short, the complaint must contain
a specific allegation of every fact and circumstances
necessary to constitute the crime charged."
In the cases at bar, the informations in Criminal Case No.
S-1964 and Criminal Case No. S-1965 charged the
accused with rape committed against Elvie Basco on
August 15, 1994 and August 16, 1994, respectively. All
evidence of the prosecution tried to prove that the victim
was raped by the accused on these dates. The accused
interposed the defense of alibi. He proved that on these
dates he was in the town of Sta. Maria helping a friend
butcher a pig for the town fiesta. He also proved that on
said dates, the victim, Elvie, was no longer living with
them in Mabitac, Laguna. She already transferred to
Minayutan, Famy, Laguna where she was in Grade 2.
Despite the parties evidence, the trial court convicted the
accused for allegedly raping Elvie on August 15 and 16,
1993. Without doubt, the accused was not given any
chance to prove where he was on August 15 and 16,
1993. What he did was to prove where he was on August
15 and 16, 1994 for the informations charged him with
rapes on those specific dates. He had no opportunity to
defend himself on the rapes allegedly committed on the
earlier dates. This is plain denial of due process.

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)

16.

PEOPLE VS MENDEZ (G.R. 179962


6/11/2014)

PRINCIPLE:

Amendments that do not charge another


offense different from that charged in the
original one; or do not alter the prosecution's
theory of the case so as to cause surprise to the
accused and affect the form of defense he has or
will assume are considered merely as formal
amendments.

The jurisprudential test on whether a defendant is


prejudiced by the amendment of an information pertains
to the availability of the same defense and evidence that
the accused previously had under the original
information. This test, however, must be read together
with the characteristic thread of formal amendments,
which is to maintain the nature of the crime or the
essence
of
the
offense
charged.
FACTS:
Petitioner Dr. Mendez has been operating as a single
proprietor under the trade names Mendez Body and Face
Salon and Spa, Mendez Body and Face Skin Clinic, Weigh
Less Center and Mendez Weigh Less Center. BIR filed a
complaint against petitioner for failure to file his income
tax returns for taxable years 2001 to 2003. In his defense,
he admitted that he has been operating as a single
proprietor under these trade names in Quezon City,
Makati, Dagupan and San Fernando. However, he
countered that he did not file his income tax returns in
these places because his business establishments were
registered only in 2003, thus, were not yet in existence at
the time of his alleged failure to file his income tax return.
An Information was filed against him with the CTA for
violation of Section 255 of RA No. 8424 (Tax Reform Act
of 1997) which reads:
That on or about the 15th day of April, 2002, at Quezon
City, and within the jurisdiction of [the CTA] the above
named accused, a duly registered taxpayer, and sole
proprietor of "Weigh Less Center" with principal office
at No. 31 Roces Avenue, Quezon City, and with several
branches in Quezon City, Makati, San Fernando and
Dagupan City, did then and there, wilfully, unlawfully
and feloniously fail to file his Income Tax Return (ITR)
with the Bureau of Internal Revenue for the taxable
year 2001, to the damage and prejudice of the
Government in the estimated amount of P1,089,439.08,
exclusive of penalties, surcharges and interest.

QUANTUM LEAP (USJ-R SCHOOL OF LAW (BATCH 2017)


A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

The accused was arraigned and pleaded not guilty on


March 5, 2007. On May 4, 2007, the prosecution filed a
"Motion to Amend Information with Leave of Court."The
amended information reads:
That on or about the 15th day of April, 2002, at Quezon
City, and within the jurisdiction of [the CTA] the above
named accused, doing business under the name and
style of "Weigh Less Center"/Mendez Medical
Group", with several branches in Quezon City,
Muntinlupa City, Mandaluyong City and Makati City,
did then and there, wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously
fail to file his income tax return (ITR) with the Bureau of
Internal Revenue for income earned for the taxable
year 2001, to the damage and prejudice of the
Government in the estimated amount of P1,089,439.08,
exclusive of penalties, surcharges and interest
(underscoring and boldfacing in the original)
Petitioner failed to file his comment to the motion within
the required period; thus, the CTA First Division granted
the prosecutions motion. He then assails the validity of
the amended information contending that the
prosecutions amendment is a substantial amendment
prohibited under Section 14, Rule 110 of the Revised
Rules of Criminal Procedure.
ISSUE:
Whether or not prosecutions amendments made after
the arraignment are substantial in nature and must
perforce be denied.
RULING:
No.
There is no precise definition of what constitutes a
substantial amendment. According to jurisprudence,
substantial matters in the complaint or information
consist of the recital of facts constituting the offense
charged and determinative of the jurisdiction of the
court. Under Section 14 Rule 110 of the Revised Rules of
Criminal Procedure, however, the prosecution is given
the right to amend the information, regardless of the
nature of the amendment, so long as the amendment is
sought before the accused enters his plea, subject to the
qualification under the second paragraph of Section 14.
Once the accused is arraigned and enters his plea,
however, Section 14 prohibits the prosecution from
seeking a substantial amendment, particularly
mentioning those that may prejudice the rights of the
accused. One of these rights is the constitutional right of
the accused to be informed of the nature and cause of
accusation against him, a right which is given life during
the arraignment of the accused of the charge of against
him. The theory in law is that since the accused officially
begins to prepare his defense against the accusation on
the basis of the recitals in the information read to him

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
during arraignment, then the prosecution must establish
its case on the basis of the same information.
Amendments that do not charge another offense
different from that charged in the original one; or do not
alter the prosecution's theory of the case so as to cause
surprise to the accused and affect the form of defense he
has or will assume are considered merely as formal
amendments.
In the present case, the amendments sought by the
prosecution pertains to (i) the alleged change in the date
in the commission of the crime from 2001 to 2002; (ii)
the addition of the phrase "doing business under the
name and style of Mendez Medical Group;" (iii) the
change and/or addition of the branches of petitioners
operation; and (iv) the addition of the phrase "for income
earned." We cannot see how these amendments would
adversely affect any substantial right of the petitioner as
accused.
I.

The "change" in the date from 2001 to


2002 and the addition of the phrase "for
income earned"
At the outset we note that the actual year of the
commission of the offense has escaped both the
petitioner and prosecution. In its Motion to Amend the
Information, the prosecution mistakenly stated that the
information it originally filed alleged the commission of
the offense as "on or about the 15th day of April, 2001"
even if the record is clear that that the actual year of
commission alleged is 2002. The petitioner makes a
similar erroneous allegation in its petition before the
Court.
Interestingly, in its August 13, 2007 resolution, denying
the petitioners motion for reconsideration, the CTA
implicitly ruled that there was in fact no amendment of
the date in the information by correctly citing what the
original information alleges. This, notwithstanding, the
petitioner still baselessly belaboured the point in its
present petition by citing the erroneous content of the
prosecutions motion to amend instead of the original
information itself. This kind of legal advocacy obviously
added nothing but confusion to what is otherwise a
simple case and another docket to the High Courts
overwhelming
caseload.
That the actual date of the commission of the offense
pertains to the year 2002 is only consistent with the
allegation in the information on the taxable year it
covers, i.e., for the taxable year 2001. Since the
information alleges that petitioner failed to file his
income tax return for the taxable year 2001, then the
offense could only possibly be committed when
petitioner failed to file his income tax return before the
due date of filing, which is on April of the succeeding
year, 2002. Accordingly, the addition of the phrase "for
the income earned" before the phrase "for the taxable
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year 2001" cannot but be a mere formal amendment


since the added phrase merely states with additional
precision something that is already contained in the
original information, i.e., the income tax return is
required to be filed precisely for the income earned for
the preceding taxable year.
II.

The addition of the phrase "doing


business under the name and style of
Mendez Medical Group and the change
and/or addition of the branches of
petitioners operation
Under the National Internal Revenue Code, a resident
citizen who is engaged in the practice of a profession
within the Philippines is obligated to file in duplicate an
income tax return on his income from all sources,
regardless of the amount of his gross income.
Since the petitioner operates as a sole proprietor from
taxable years 2001 to 2003, the petitioner should have
filed a consolidated return in his principal place of
business, regardless of the number and location of his
other branches. Consequently, we cannot but agree with
the CTA that the change and/or addition of the branches
of the petitioners operation in the information does not
constitute substantial amendment because it does not
change the prosecutions theory that the petitioner failed
to file his income tax return.
As to when the rights of an accused are prejudiced by
an amendment made after he had pleaded to the
original information, Montenegro ruled that
prejudice exists when a defense under the original
information would no longer be available after the
amendment is made, and when any evidence the
accused might have, would be inapplicable to the
Information as amended.
Here, the prosecutions theory of the case, i.e., that
petitioner failed to file his income tax return for the
taxable year 2001 did not change. The prosecutions
cause for filing an information remained the same as the
cause in the original and in the amended information. For
emphasis, the prosecutions evidence during the
preliminary investigation of the case shows that
petitioner did not file his income tax return in his place
of legal residence or principal place of business in
Quezon City or with the Commissioner. In short, the
amendment sought did not alter the crime charged.
At first, a change in the location of branches alleged in the
information may appear to deprive the petitioner of his
defense in the original information, i.e., the petitioners
branches in Dagupan and San Fernando were registered
only in 2003 and were therefore "in existent" in 2001.
However, this is not the kind of defense contemplated
under the Rules of Criminal Procedure, and broadly
under the due process of law.

14

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
Contrary to the petitioners claim, the opportunity given
to the accused to present his defense evidence during the
preliminary investigation is not exhaustive. In the same
manner that the complainants evidence during
preliminary investigation is only required to establish
the minimal evidentiary threshold of probable cause, the
evidence that the respondent may present during trial is
not limited to what he had presented during the
preliminary investigation, so long as the evidence for
both parties supports or negates the elements of the
offense charged.

17.
PRINCIPLE:

To be sure, the jurisprudential test on whether a


defendant is prejudiced by the amendment of an
information pertains to the availability of the same
defense and evidence that the accused previously had
under the original information. This test, however, must
be read together with the characteristic thread of formal
amendments, which is to maintain the nature of the
crime or the essence of the offense charged.
In the present case, this thread remained consistently
under the amended information, alleging the petitioners
failure to file his return and consequently to pay the
correct amount of taxes. Accordingly, the petitioner
could not have been surprised at all.
We also reject for lack of merit petitioners claim that the
inclusion of the phrase "doing business under the name
and style of Mendez Medical Group" after his preliminary
investigation and arraignment deprives him of the right
to question the existence of this "entity."
The petitioner however has not drawn our attention to
any of his related operations that actually possesses its
own juridical personality. In the original information,
petitioner is described as "sole proprietor of Weigh Less
Center." A sole proprietorship is a form of business
organization conducted for profit by a single individual,
and requires the proprietor or owner thereof, like the
petitioner-accused, to secure licenses and permits,
register the business name, and pay taxes to the national
government without acquiring juridical or legal
personality of its own.
In the amended information, the prosecution
additionally alleged that petitioner is "doing business
under the name and style of Weigh Less Center/Mendez
Medical Group." Given the nature of a sole
proprietorship, the addition of the phrase "doing
business under the name and style" is merely descriptive
of the nature of the business organization established by
the petitioner as a way to carry out the practice of his
profession. As a phrase descriptive of a sole
proprietorship, the petitioner cannot feign ignorance of
the "entity" "Mendez Medical Group" because this entity
is nothing more than the shadow of its business owner petitioner himself.

QUANTUM LEAP (USJ-R SCHOOL OF LAW (BATCH 2017)


A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

ALMEDA VS VILLALUZ (160 PHIL


750)

The additional allegations of habitual


delinquency and recidivism do not have the
effect of charging another offense different or
distinct from the charge of qualified theft (of a
motor vehicle) contained in the information.
Neither do they tend to correct any defect in the
jurisdiction of the trial court over the subjectmatter of the case. They do not alter the
prosecution's theory of the case nor possibly
prejudice the form of defense the accused has
or will assume.

FACTS:
Petitioner Almeda was charged with the crime of
qualified theft in the court presided by respondent Judge
Villaluz and was recommended P15,000 bond for his
provisional release to be posted entirely in cash. In the
scheduled hearing, he asked the court toto allow him to
post a surety bond in lieu of the cash bond. This request
was denied, and so was an oral motion for
reconsideration, on the ground that the amended
information imputed habitual delinquency and
recidivism on the part of Almeda.
At the same hearing, the respondent city fiscal reiterated
his oral motion for amendment of the information so
as to include allegations of recidivism and habitual
delinquency. Almeda objected, arguing that (a) such an
amendment was premature since no copies of prior
conviction could yet be presented in court, (b) the
motion to amend should have been made in writing in
order to enable him to object formally, and (c) the
proposed amendment would place him in double
jeopardy considering that he had already pleaded not
guilty to the information. The court nevertheless granted
the respondent fiscal's motion in open court. An oral
motion for reconsideration was denied. The petitioner
forthwith moved for the dismissal of the charge on the
ground of double jeopardy, but this motion and a motion
for reconsideration were denied in open court.
ISSUE: Whether OR NOT the amendment to the
information, after a plea of not guilty thereto, was
properly allowed in both substance and procedure.
HELD:

15

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
YES. The amendment of the information to include
allegations of habitual delinquency and recidivism, after
a previous plea thereto by the accused, is valid and in no
way violates his right to be fully apprised before trial
of the charges against him.
Under section 13 of Rule 110 of the Rules of Court, the trial
court has discretion to allow amendments to the
information on all matters of form after the defendant has
pleaded and during the trial when the same can be done
without prejudice to the rights of the defendant. What are
prohibited at this stage of the proceedings are
amendments in substance. And the substantial matter in a
complaint or information is the recital of facts constituting
the offense charged and determinative of the jurisdiction
of the court. All other matters are merely of form.
The additional allegations of habitual delinquency
and recidivism do not have the effect of charging
another offense different or distinct from the charge
of qualified theft (of a motor vehicle) contained in
the information. Neither do they tend to correct any
defect in the jurisdiction of the trial court over the
subject-matter of the case. The said new allegations
relate only to the range of the penalty that the court
might impose in the event of conviction. They do not
alter the prosecution's theory of the case nor
possibly prejudice the form of defense the accused
has or will assume. Consequently, in authorizing the
amendments, the respondent judge acted with due
consideration of the petitioner's rights and did not abuse
his discretion.

amend the information, it would sustain the objection.


The fiscal filed an amended information alleging that it
was Bruno who carried the revolver and Cecilio the knife.
The court admitted said amendment.
ISSUE: Whether or not the resolution so rendered be
declared null and void on the ground that the court
exceeded its jurisdiction and abused its discretion in
permitting the amendment to the information.
HELD:
No. The court did not abuse its discretion.
The amendment to the information was merely a matter
of form. It neither affects nor alters the nature of the
crime because, whether it be Bruno or Cecilio who
inflicted the mortal wound, the crime would be the same.
Neither does it affect the extent of the liability of the
appellants because, it being alleged in the information
that both accused conspired and helped each other to
commit the crime, they would be liable to the same
extent, whoever inflicted the wound which resulted in
the death of the deceased. Therefore, it is purely an
amendment of form which does not substantially alter
the information nor affect the rights of the accused.

19.
PRINCIPLE:

18.

AREVALO VS NEPOMUCENO (63


PHIL 657)

PRINCIPLE:

An amendment of form does not substantially


alter the information nor affect the rights of the
accused

FACTS:
In the court of First Instance of Nueva Ecija, an
information for the crime of murder was filed against
Bruno Arevalo and Cecilio Arevalo, alleging that Bruno
was armed with a knife and Cecilio with a revolver. After
the accused had pleaded not guilty upon arraignment,
and upon proceeding with the trial of the case on the day
fixed therefor, a witness was presented who testified that
it was Bruno who carried the revolver and Cecilio, the
knife. Alleging that according to the information it was
Bruno who carried the knife and Cecilio the revolver, the
attorney for the defense filed an objection to said
testimony. The court stated that if the fiscal did not
QUANTUM LEAP (USJ-R SCHOOL OF LAW (BATCH 2017)
A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

US VS DELA CRUZ (3 PHIL 657)

The amendment to the complaint made before


the presentation of the evidence for the defense
has not prejudiced, nor could it have
prejudiced, any essential rights of the
defendants as well because it did not affect the
essence of the crime charged, but merely an
accidental detail of the same, as because it did
not deprive the accused of an opportunity to
produce evidence for their defense.

FACTS:
The defendants were prosecuted on an information for
the crime of brigandage. After the prosecution rested but
before the presentation of the evidence of the defense,
the trial court permitted the prosecuting officer to
amend the information eliminating the words "led by one
Silverio" and substituting therefor the words "under the
command of Luciano San Miguel."
The defendants were sentenced in the Court of First
Instance to the penalty of twenty years imprisonment
for the crime of brigandage, punished by section 1 of Act
No. 518 of the Commission. The merits of the case

16

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
demonstrate sufficiently the guilt of the said defendants
and justify the sentence for the aforementioned crime.
ISSUE: Whether or not the amendment was valid.
HELD:
Yes. It is valid.
The amendment to the complaint made before the
presentation of the evidence for the defense has not
prejudiced, nor could it have prejudiced, any essential
rights of the defendants as well because it did not affect
the essence of the crime charged, but merely an
accidental detail of the same, as because it did not
deprive the accused of an opportunity to produce
evidence for their defense, if they had desired, in relation
to the said amendment; its allowance was not, therefore,
a fatal error, as the defense contends, relying upon
section 10 of General Orders, No. 58.

20.
21.

23.

VEGA VS PANIS
PEOPLE VS SOBERANO (472 SCRA
125)
TEHANKEE VS MADAYAG
(3/6/1992)
GALVEZ VS CA (10/24/1994)

24.

US VS INFANTE (36 PHIL 146)

22.

PRINCIPLE:

The two pawn tickets were wholly separate and


distinct documents. They had no relation to
each other as members of a series of
instruments, so intimately related, that the
falsification of one individual of the series
would be, in effect, a falsification of the entire
series. The crime of falsification of a private
document was complete and consummated
when, with intent to prejudice a third person,
the first pawn ticket was actually falsified; and
a wholly separate and distinct crime was
initiated and consummated when the second
ticket was falsified

FACTS:
Appellants in this case were convicted in the former case
of the crime of falsification of a private document, in that
they falsified a pawn ticket issued by the Monte de
QUANTUM LEAP (USJ-R SCHOOL OF LAW (BATCH 2017)
A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

Piedad, to the prejudice of and with intent to prejudice


the complaining witness. The evidence disclosed that the
accused changed the description of the pawned article as
it appeared on the face of the pawn ticket and substituted
therefor another article of greatly superior value, and
that thereafter the falsified ticket was itself pawned in
the pawnshop of the complaining witness for an amount
largely in excess of the true value of the article pawned
in the Monte de Piedad, for which the original pawn ticket
was issued.
Evidence discloses that this pawn ticket was falsified by
these accused at or about the same time when they
falsified the pawn ticket for the falsification of which they
were convicted at the former trial;
ISSUE:
CAN THE ACCUSED BE CHARGED IN A SEPARATE
INFORMATIONS ALTHOUGH IT WAS SHOWN THAT THE
TWO PAWN TICKETS WERE FALSIFIED AT OR ABOUT
THE SAME TIME?
RULING:
YES.
The two pawn tickets were wholly separate and distinct
documents. They had no relation to each other as
members of a series of instruments, so intimately
related, that the falsification of one individual of the
series would be, in effect, a falsification of the entire
series. The crime of falsification of a private document
was complete and consummated when, with intent to
prejudice a third person, the first pawn ticket was
actually falsified; and a wholly separate and distinct
crime was initiated and consummated when the second
ticket was falsified. That both documents may have been
falsified to be used together in the perpetration of an
embezzlement in no wise affects the case, as under the
definition of the crime of falsification of private
documents set out in article 304 of the Penal Code, the
crime is consummated and complete at the moment
when such a document is actually falsified, to the
prejudice of, or with intent to prejudice a third person, it
matters not to what use the document may be put
thereafter, as will readily be seen from the express terms
of that article, which are as follows:
Any person who, to the damage of another, or
with the intent to cause such damage, shall in
any private document commit any of the acts of
falsification enumerated in article three
hundred shall suffer the penalty of presidio
correccional in its minimum and medium
degrees and be fined in a sum not less than six
17

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
hundred and twenty-five and not more than six
thousand two hundred and fifty pesetas.
We find no error in the proceedings had in the court
below prejudicial to the rights of the accused, and the
judgment convicting and sentencing him should,
therefore, be affirmed, with costs.

25.

VILLAROSA VS MAGALLANES
(4/29/2003)

PRINCIPLE:

As provided in Section 15, Rule 110 of the


Rules on Criminal Procedure, 15 it is a
fundamental principle that the criminal
action shall be instituted and tried in the
court of the municipality or province where
the offense was committed or where any of
its essential ingredients took place.
it is not the intent of our lawmakers that all
perjury cases committed in relation to an
election offense must be filed in Manila the
seat of the Law Department of COMELEC, which
under the COMELEC Rules of Procedure
conducts preliminary investigations in election
offenses. 19 Surely, such situation will congest
the dockets of courts in Manila. It will also be
physically and financially burdensome on
litigants nationwide, who must travel from
remote areas just to pursue the course of justice
in Manila. This scenario will inevitably
discourage the prosecution of offenses of this
nature a situation which, to our mind, is not
only unlikely, but an absurd one, farthest from
the imagination of our legislators.

FACTS:
petitioner Emilio Villarosa and private respondent Jude
Thaddeus Sayson were candidates for barangay captain,
with private respondent emerging the victor.
one Victoria S. Delfin filed a verified complaint
against private respondents with the Office of the
Election Officer in Bacolod City, for violation of the
Omnibus Election Code. The complaint alleged that
private respondents posted campaign streamers prior to
the start of the campaign period.
the counter-affidavits of private respondents were
forwarded to the Law Department of the Commission on
Elections (COMELEC), in Manila, Private respondent was
QUANTUM LEAP (USJ-R SCHOOL OF LAW (BATCH 2017)
A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

also found to have made untruthful statements upon a


material matter in a counter-affidavit submitted before
the COMELEC, duly subscribed and sworn to by him
before Asst. City Prosecutor Cesar L. Beloria of the
Bacolod City Prosecution Office, a competent person
authorized to administer oath, which counter-affidavit is
required by law in the preliminary investigation of said
case, which found the existence of probable cause for the
indictment of private respondents. The counteraffidavits filed by private respondents with the
COMELEC served as the basis for petitioner to file a
complaint for perjury against private respondents with
the Office of the City Prosecutor of Bacolod City.
private respondents filed a motion to quash the
informations on the ground that exclusive jurisdiction
lies with the proper court in Manila since the counteraffidavits were forwarded to the Law Department of the
COMELEC in Manila.
ISSUE:
WHERE should the case be filed?
RULING:
In Bacolod City
We agree with the petitioner and the OSG that the
perjury case must be filed in Bacolod where the case for
violation of the Omnibus Election Code was pending. As
provided in Section 15, Rule 110 of the Rules on
Criminal Procedure, 15 it is a fundamental principle
that the criminal action shall be instituted and tried
in the court of the municipality or province where
the offense was committed or where any of its
essential ingredients took place. In this case, the
disputed affidavit containing the alleged false statements
was filed by private respondents with the Office of the
Election Officer in Bacolod City, where a complaint for
violation of the Omnibus Election Code was lodged
against
them.
The transmission of the purported untruthful affidavit to
the Law Department of COMELEC in Manila for purposes
of preliminary investigation did not make the offense
triable in the Manila courts. We are in full accord with the
reasoning of the OSG that it was in the Office of the
Election Officer in Bacolod City where the counteraffidavits were executed and originally submitted by
private respondents; hence, it was in that place that the
operative acts constituting the crime of perjury, if
proven,
were
committed.
18

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)

Lastly, to hold that the Manila court has jurisdiction over


the present case would open the floodgates to a judicial
anarchy. To our mind, it is not the intent of our
lawmakers that all perjury cases committed in relation to
an election offense must be filed in Manila the seat of
the Law Department of COMELEC, which under the
COMELEC Rules of Procedure conducts preliminary
investigations in election offenses. 19 Surely, such
situation will congest the dockets of courts in Manila. It
will also be physically and financially burdensome on
litigants nationwide, who must travel from remote areas
just to pursue the course of justice in Manila. This
scenario will inevitably discourage the prosecution of
offenses of this nature a situation which, to our mind,
is not only unlikely, but an absurd one, farthest from the
imagination
of
our
legislators.
In sum, jurisdiction over the crime of perjury in the
instant case is vested in the Municipal Trial Court in
Cities of Bacolod City, where the affidavit constituting
false evidence was filed. Accordingly, respondent judge
erred and committed grave abuse of discretion in holding
otherwise.

26.

PEOPLE VS YABUT (11/29/1977)

venue or jurisdiction in a case of estafa for postdating


or issuing a check without insufficient funds
PRINCIPLE: . Section 14(a), Rule 110 of the Revised
Rules of Court provides: "In all criminal prosecutions the
action shall be instituted and tried in the Court of the
municipality or province wherein the offense was
committed or any one of the essential ingredients thereof
took place." The theory is that a person indicted with a
transitory offense may be validly tried in any jurisdiction
where the offense was in part committed. 3 However, if
all the acts material and essential to the crime and
requisite of its consummation occurred in one
municipality or province, the court of that
municipality or province has the sole jurisdiction to
try the case.
The delivery of the instrument is the final
act essential to its consummation as an obligation
FACTS:

QUANTUM LEAP (USJ-R SCHOOL OF LAW (BATCH 2017)


A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

That during the period from February 22, to February 26,


1975, in the Municipality of Malolos, Province of Bulcan,
Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable
Court, the said accused Cecilia Que Yabut, as treasurer of
the Yabut Transit Line, by means of false pretenses and
pretending to have sufficient funds in the Merchants
Banking Corporation, located and doing business in
Caloocan City, prepared issued and make out Check Nos.
CB-19035 B, CB-190396 and CB-190397, dated February
22, 1975, February 24, 1975 and February 26, 1975, in
the total sum of P6,568.94, drawn against the Merchants
Banking Corporation, payable to Freeway Tires Supply,
owned and operated by Alicia P. Andan, in payment of
articles and merchandise delivered to and received by
said accused, gave and delivered the said checks to
the said Freeway Tires Supply, the said accused Cecilia
Que Yabut well knowing that at the time there was no or
insufficient funds in the said Merchants Banking
Corporation, and upon presentation of the said checks to
the bank, the checks were dishonored and inspite of
repeated demands by the owner of the Freeway Tires
Supply to deposit the necessary funds to cover the checks
within the reglementary period enjoined by law, failed
and refused to do so, to the damage and prejudice of
Alicia P. Andan, owner and operator of the Freeway Tires
Supply, in the total amount of P6,568.94.
Instead of entering a plea, respondent Cecilia Que Yabut
filed a motion to quash ON THE GROUND THAT the
venue was improperly laid in Malolos, Bulacan, because
the postdated checks were issued and delivered to, and
received by, the complainant in the City of Caloocan,
where she (respondent Que Yabut) holds office.
ISSUE:
WHETHER VENUE IS IMPROPERLY LAID
RULING:
NO
Estafa by postdating or issuing a bad check under Art.
315, par. 2 (d) of the Revised Penal Code may be a
transitory or continuing offense. 1 Its basic elements of
deceit and damage 2 may independently arise in separate
places. In the event of such occurrence, the institution of
the criminal action in either place is legally allowed.
Section 14(a), Rule 110 of the Revised Rules of Court
provides: "In all criminal prosecutions the action shall be
instituted and tried in the Court of the municipality or
province wherein the offense was committed or any one
of the essential ingredients thereof took place." The theory
19

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
is that a person indicted with a transitory offense may be
validly tried in any jurisdiction where the offense was in
part committed. 3 However, if all the acts material and
essential to the crime and requisite of its consummation
occurred in one municipality or province, the court of
that municipality or province has the sole jurisdiction to
try the case.
. While the subject checks were written, signed, or
dated in Caloocan City, they were not completely
made or drawn there, but in Malolos, Bulacan, where
they were uttered and delivered. That is the place of
business and residence of the payee. The place
where the bills were written, signed, or dated does
not necessarily fix or determine the place where they
were executed. What is of decisive importance is the
delivery thereof. The delivery of the instrument is the
final
act essential to
its consummation as
an
obligation. 4 An undelivered bill or note is inoperative.
Until delivery, the contract is revocable. 5 And the
issuance as well as the delivery of the check must be to a
person who takes it as a holder, which means
"(t)he payee or indorsee of a bill or note, who is in
possession of it, or the bearer thereof." 6 Delivery of the
check signifies transfer of possession, whether actual or
constructive, from one person to another with intent
to transfer title thereto. 7 Thus, the penalizing clause of
the provision of Art. 315, par. 2 (d) states: "By postdating
a check, or issuing a check in payment of an
obligation when the offender had no funds in the bank, or
his funds deposited therein were not sufficient to cover
the amount of the check." Clearly, therefore, the element
of deceit thru the issuance and delivery of the worthless
checks to the complainant took place in Malolos, Bulcan,
conferring upon a court in that locality jurisdiction to try
the case.
The venue of the offense lies at the place where the check
was executed and delivered to the payee. 16 Since in the
instant case it was in Malolos, Bulacan where the checks
were uttered and delivered to complaint Andan, at which
place, her business and residence were also located, the
criminal prosecution of estafa may be lodged
therein.17 As earlier pointed out, the giving of the checks
by the two private respondents in Caloocan City to
Modesto Yambo cannot be treated as valid delivery of the
checks, because Yambo is a mere "messenger" or "parttime employee" and not an agent of complaint Alicia P.
Andan.

QUANTUM LEAP (USJ-R SCHOOL OF LAW (BATCH 2017)


A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

27.

PEOPLE VS GROSPE (1/20/1988)

PRINCIPLE: .

What is of decisive importance is the delivery


thereof. The delivery of the instrument is the
final
act
essential
to
its consummation as an obligation.

FACTS:
Manuel Parulan is an authorized dealer of San Mig Corp
in Bulacan. He issued 2checks in connection with beer
purchases and which he delivered to the Sales supervisor
(Mr. Cornelio) of San Mig. The checks were dishonored
by Planters Devt Bank (drawee) in Bulacan.
FIRST ISSUANCE:
ISSUED AT: Santa Maria, Bulacan Branch
SUM INVVOLVED: of P86,071.20
DELIVERED AND RECEIVED BY: the SMC Regional
Office at San Fernando, Pampanga
WHERE DISHONORED: the Bank of the Philippine
Islands (BPI), San Fernando Branch
SECOND ISSUANCE:
ISSUED AT: Santa Maria, Bulacan Branch
SUM INVOLVED: of P11,918.80
DELIVERED AND RECEIVED BY: SMC Regional Office
in San Fernando, Pampanga
WHERE DISHONORED: the PDB, in Santa Maria,
Bulacan.

ISSUE:
WHERE SHOULD THE CASE BE FILED
HELD:
Estafa by postdating or issuing a bad check may be
a
transitory
or
continuing offense. Its basic elements of deceit and
damage may arise independently in separate places. In
this case, it did and jurisdiction may be conferred in any

20

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
of the two places wherein the two elements arose.
For while the subject check was issued in Bulaca
n,
it
wasn't
completely
drawn thereat, but in Pampanga. What is of dec
isive importance is the delivery thereof. The
delivery of the instrument is the final act essential to
its consummation as an obligation. For although
the
check
was
received
by the SMC Supervisor in Bulacan, that was not
delivery in the contemplation of law. The rule is that
the issuancve as well as the delivery of the check must be
to a person who takes it as a holder, which means
the payee or indorser of a bill or note, who is in p
ossession
of
it,
or
the
bearer thereof. The said representative had to forw
ard the check TO the regional office of San Mig in
Pampanga. Deceit took place in Pampanga where the
check was legally issued and delivered.

e pre-trial conference, the prosecution presented its evi


dence-in-chief. After the prosecution rested its case, Cho
i filed a Motion for Leave of Court to File Demurrer to Ev
idence to which he attached his Demurrer, asserting tha
t the prosecution failed to prove that he received the not
ice of dishonor, hence, the presumption of the element o
f knowledge of insufficiency of funds did not arise.
Metropolitan Trial Court of Makati, Branch 65 (MeTC 6
5) granted the Demurrer and dismissed the case.
Petitioner, Hun Hyung Park (Park) appealed the civil as
pect of the case to the Regional Trial Court (RTC60), con
tending that the dismissal of the criminal case should no
t include its civil aspect.
By Decision, the RTC 60 held that while the evidence pre

III.

RULE 111 (PROSECUTION OF CIVIL


ACTIONS)

sented was insufficient to prove respondents criminal li


ability, it did not altogether extinguish his civil liability. I
t accordingly granted the appeal of petitioner and order
ed respondent to pay him the amount of P1,875,000 wit

28.

HUN HYUNG PARK VS EUNG WON


CHOI (2/12/2007)

Principle:

For, in case of acquittal, the accused may still


be adjudged civilly liable. The extinction of the
penal action does not carry with it the extincti
on of the civil action where (a) the acquittal is
based on reasonable doubt as only preponder
ance of evidence is required; (b) the court decl
ares that the liability of the accused is only civ
il; and (c) the civil liability of the accused does
not arise from or is not based upon the crime
of which the accused was acquitted.

Facts:
In an Information, respondent, Eung Won Choi (Choi), w
as charged for violation of BP 22, for issuing PNB Check
No. 0077133 in the amount of P1,875,000 which was di
shonored for having been drawn against insufficient fun
ds.
Upon arraignment, Choi, with the assistance of counsel,
pleaded "not guilty" to the offense charged. Following th
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h legal interest.
Upon Chois MR however, the RTC set aside its decision
and ordered the remand of the case to the MeTC "for fur
ther proceedings, so that the defendant [-respondent he
rein] may adduce evidence on the civil aspect of the case
."
Petitioner appealed RTC60's reversal of its prior decisio
n but the same was denied by CA
Issue:
Whether or not the private offended party can appeal fo
r the civil aspect of the case when the accused has been
acquitted.
Ruling:
Yes. As a rule, a judgment of acquittal is immediately fin
al and executory and the prosecution cannot appeal the
acquittal because of the constitutional prohibition again
st double jeopardy. Either the offended party or the acc
used may, however, appeal the civil aspect of the judgm
ent despite the acquittal of the accused.

21

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
When a demurrer to evidence is filed without leave of c

ollow that the same evidence is insufficient to establish

ourt, the whole case is submitted for judgment on the ba

a preponderance of evidence. For if the court grants the

sis of the evidence for the prosecution as the accused is

demurrer, proceedings on the civil aspect of the case ge

deemed to have waived the right to present evidence. At

nerally proceeds. The only recognized instance when an

that juncture, the court is called upon to decide the case

acquittal on demurrer carries with it the dismissal of th

including its civil aspect, unless the enforcement of the c

e civil aspect is when there is a finding that the act or o

ivil liability by a separate civil action has been waived or

mission from which the civil liability may arise did not e

reserved.

xist. Absent such determination, trial as to the civil aspe


ct of the case must perforce continue.

If the filing of a separate civil action has not been reserv


ed or priorly instituted or the enforcement of civil liabili

The case is REMANDED to MeTC 65 which is DIRECTED

ty is not waived, the trial court should, in case of convict

to forthwith set Criminal Case No. 294690 for further pr

ion, state the civil liability or damages caused by the wr

oceedings only for the purpose of receiving evidence on

ongful act or omission to be recovered from the accused

the civil aspect of the case.

by the offended party, if there is any.


For, in case of acquittal, the accused may still be adjudge

29.

d civilly liable. The extinction of the penal action does n


ot carry with it the extinction of the civil action where (a

DAYAP VS SENDIONG (1/29/2009)

Principle:

) the acquittal is based on reasonable doubt as only prep


onderance of evidence is required; (b) the court declare

The civil action based on delict may be deeme

s that the liability of the accused is only civil; and (c) the

d extinguished if there is a finding on the final

civil liability of the accused does not arise from or is not

judgment in the criminal action that the act or

based upon the crime of which the accused was acquitte

omission from which the civil liability may ari

d.

se did not exist or where the accused did not c


ommit the acts or omission imputed to him.

The civil action based on delict may, however, be deeme


d extinguished if there is a finding on the final judgment

Facts:

in the criminal action that the act or omission from whic

Herwin Petitioner Dayap was charged with the crime of

h the civil liability may arise did not exist.

Reckless Imprudence resulting to Homicide, Less Seriou


s Physical Injuries, and Damage to Property before MTC

In case of a demurrer to evidence filed with leave of cou

Sibulan.

rt, the accused may adduce countervailing evidence if th


e court denies the demurrer. Such denial bears no distin

After the prosecution has rested its case, Dayap filed de

ction as to the two aspects of the case because there is a

murrer to evidence. MTC granted the demurrer and acq

disparity of evidentiary value between the quanta of evi

uitted petitioner of the crime of reckless imprudence. T

dence in such aspects of the case. In other words, a cour

he MTC found that the evidence presented by responde

t may not deny the demurrer as to the criminal aspect a

nts failed to establish the allegations in the Information.

nd at the same time grant the demurrer as to the civil as

RTC affirmed the acquittal of petitioner but ordered the

pect, for if the evidence so far presented is not insufficie

remand of the case to the MTC for further proceedings o

nt to prove the crime beyond reasonable doubt, then the

n the civil aspect of the case.

same evidence is likewise not insufficient to establish ci


vil liability by mere preponderance of evidence.

Issue :
Whether or not the acquittal of the accused carries with

On the other hand, if the evidence so far presented is ins

it the extinction of the civil liability.

ufficient as proof beyond reasonable doubt, it does not f


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REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
Ruling :

e of the accident is the damage to the rear portion of the


truck caused by the swerving of the Colt Galant into the

Yes. The acquittal of the accused does not automatically

rear left portion of the cargo truck and not the reckless

preclude a judgment against him on the civil aspect of th

driving of the truck by petitioner, clearly establishing th

e case. The extinction of the penal action does not carry

at petitioner is not guilty of reckless imprudence. Conse

with it the extinction of the civil liability where: (a) the a

quently, there is no more need to remand the case to the

cquittal is based on reasonable doubt as only preponder

trial court for proceedings on the civil aspect of the case,

ance of evidence is required; (b) the court declares that

since petitioners acquittal has extinguished his civil liab

the liability of the accused is only civil; and (c) the civil li

ility.

ability of the accused does not arise from or is not based


upon the crime of which the accused is acquitted. Howe

30.

ver, the civil action based on delict may be deemed extin


guished if there is a finding on the final judgment in the

DMPI EMPLOYEES CORP VS VELEZ


(11/29/2001)

criminal action that the act or omission from which the


civil liability may arise did not exist or where the accuse
d did not commit the acts or omission imputed to him.

Principle:

There is no more need for a reservation of the


right to file the independent civil actions unde

Thus, if demurrer is granted and the accused is acquitte

r Articles 32, 33, 34 and 2176 of the Civil Code

d by the court, the accused has the right to adduce evide

of the Philippines. The reservation and waiver

nce on the civil aspect of the case unless the court also d

referred to refers only to the civil action for th

eclares that the act or omission from which the civil liab

e recovery of the civil liability arising from the

ility may arise did not exist.34 This is because when the

offense charged. This does not include recover

accused files a demurrer to evidence, he has not yet add

y of civil liability under Articles 32, 33, 34 and

uced evidence both on the criminal and civil aspects of t

2176 of the Civil Code of the Philippines arisin

he case. The only evidence on record is the evidence for

g from the same act or omission which may be

the prosecution. What the trial court should do is issue a

prosecuted separately even without a reservat

n order or partial judgment granting the demurrer to ev

ion.

idence and acquitting the accused, and set the case for c
ontinuation of trial for the accused to adducevidence by

Issue :

way of rebuttal. Thereafter, the court shall render judg

Whether or not the civil case could proceed independen

ment on the civil aspect of the case.

tly of the criminal case for estafa without having reserve


d the filing of the civil action.

A scrutiny of the MTCs decision supports the conclusio


n that the acquittal was based on the findings that the ac

Ruling :

t or omission from which the civil liability may arise did


not exist and that petitioner did not commit the acts or

Yes. Under the present rule, only the civil liability arisin

omission imputed to him; hence, petitioners civil liabilit

g from the offense charged is deemed instituted with th

y has been extinguished by his acquittal. It should be not

e criminal action unless the offended party waives the ci

ed that the MTC categorically stated that it cannot find a

vil action, reserves his right to institute it separately, or

ny evidence which would prove that a crime had been c

institutes the civil action prior to the criminal action.

ommitted and that accused was the person responsible f


or it. It added that the prosecution failed to establish tha

There is no more need for a reservation of the right to fil

t it was petitioner who committed the crime as charged

e the independent civil actions under Articles 32, 33, 34

since its witnesses never identified petitioner as the one

and 2176 of the Civil Code of the Philippines. The reserv

who was driving the cargo truck at the time of the incide

ation and waiver referred to refers only to the civil actio

nt. Furthermore, the MTC found that the proximate caus

n for the recovery of the civil liability arising from the of

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REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
fense charged. This does not include recovery of civil lia

r the same act or omission he is accused of in the crimin

bility under Articles 32, 33, 34 and 2176 of the Civil Cod

al case. This is expressly allowed in paragraph 6, Section

e of the Philippines arising from the same act or omissio

1 of the present Rule 111 which states that the counterc

n which may be prosecuted separately even without a r

laim of the accused may be litigated in a separate civil ac

eservation.

tion. This is only fair for two reasons. First, the accused i
s prohibited from setting up any counterclaim in the civi

Thus, Civil Case No. CV-94-214, an independent civil acti

l aspect that is deemed instituted in the criminal case. T

on for damages on account of the fraud commited again

he accused is therefore forced to litigate separately his c

st respondent Villegas under Article 33 of the Civil Code,

ounterclaim against the offended party. If the accused d

may proceed independently even if there was no reserv

oes not file a separate civil action for quasi-delict, the pr

ation as to its filing.

escriptive period may set in since the period continues t


o run until the civil action for quasi-delict is filed.

31.

CASUPANAN VS LAROYA (388


SCRA 28)

Principle:

The accused in a pending criminal case for rec


kless imprudence can validly file, simultaneou
sly and independently, a separate civil action f
or quasi-delict against the private complainan
t in the criminal case.

Facts :
Two vehicles, one driven by respondent Laroya and the
other owned by petitioner Capitulo and driven by Casu
panan, figured in an accident. As a result, two cases wer

Second, the accused, who is presumed innocent, has a ri


ght to invoke Article 2177 of the Civil Code, in the same
way that the offended party can avail of this remedy whi
ch is independent of the criminal action. To disallow the
accused from filing a separate civil action for quasi-delic
t, while refusing to recognize his counterclaim in the cri
minal case, is to deny him due process of law, access to t
he courts, and equal protection of the law.
Thus, the civil action based on quasi-delict filed separat
ely by Casupanan and Capitulo is proper. The order of di
smissal by the MCTC of Civil Case No. 2089 on the groun
d of forum-shopping is erroneous.

e filed with the MCTC Capas. Laroya filed a criminal case

32.

against Casupanan for reckless imprudence resulting in


damage to property. On the other hand, Casupanan and
Capitulo filed a civil case against Laroya for quasi-delict.
Laroya, defendant in the civil case, filed a motion to dis
miss the civil case on the ground of forum-shopping con
sidering the pendency of the criminal case. The MCTC gr
anted the motion and dismissed the civil case.
Issue :

PEOPLE VS BAYOTAS (as to civil


liability)

FACTS:
Rogelio Bayotas y Cordova was charged with
Rape and eventually convicted thereof. Pending appeal of
his conviction, Bayotas died. Consequently, the Supreme
Court dismissed the criminal aspect of the appeal.
However, it required the Solicitor General to file its
comment with regard to the civil liability of Bayotas
arising from his commission of the offense charged.

Whether or not an accused in a pending criminal case fo


r reckless imprudence can validly file, simultaneously a
nd independently, a separate civil action for quasi-delict
against the private complainant in the criminal case.
Ruling :

ISSUE:
Whether or not the death of the accused
pending appeal of his conviction extinguish his civil
liability.
HELD:

Yes. The accused can file a civil action for quasi-delict fo


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REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
Article 89 of the Revised Penal Code provides
that by death of the convict personal liabilities are
extinguished, as to pecuniary penalties liability therefore
is extinguished only when the death of the offender
occurs before final judgment.

resolution dismissed the appeal for has been rendered


moot.
ISSUE:

Thus the court made a ruling as follows:

Whether or not the death of the accused


pending appeal of his conviction extinguish his civil
liability.

1.
Death of the accused pending appeal of his
conviction extinguishes his criminal liability as well as
the civil liability based solely thereon;

HELD:

2.
Corollarily, the claim for civil liability
survives notwithstanding the death of the accused, if the
same may also be predicated on a source of obligation
other than delict. Aricle 1157 of the Civil Code
enumerates these other sources of obligation from which
the civil liability may arise as a result of the same act or
omission:
Law,
Contracts,
Quasi-contracts,
Delicts,Quasi-delicts;
3.
Where the civil liability survives, an
action for recovery therefore may be pursued but only by
way of separate civil action and may be enforced either
against the executor/administrator of the estate of the
accused, depending on the source of obligation aside
from delicts;
4.
Finally, the private offended party need
not fear a forfeiture of his right to file this separate civil
action by prescription, in cases where during the
prosecution of the criminal action and prior to its
extinction, the private offended party instituted together
therewith the civil action. In such case, the statute of
limitations on the civil liability is deemed interrupted
during the pendency of the criminal case, conformably
with provisions of Article 1155 of the Civil Code, that
should thereby avoid any apprehension on a possible
privation of right by prescription.
In the case at bar, the death of Bayotas
extinguished his criminal and civil liability based solely
on the act of rape. Hence, his civil liability also
extinguished together with his criminal liability upon his
death.

33.

PEOPLE VS DATO (12/12/2010)

FACTS:
Datu was charged with Acts of Lasciviousness penalized
under Art. 3 of R.A. 7610 because he inserted his middle
finger inside a 5 year old girls vagina. He was convicted
thereof but during appeal he died. In light of the
supervening event In which occurred while petitioners
appeal of the judgment of his conviction was pending
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Article 89 of the Revised Penal Code provides


that by death of the convict personal liabilities are
extinguished, as to pecuniary penalties liability therefore
is extinguished only when the death of the offender
occurs before final judgment.
Thus the court made a ruling as follows:
1.
Death of the accused pending appeal of his
conviction extinguishes his criminal liability as well as
the civil liability based solely thereon;
2.
Corollarily, the claim for civil liability
survives notwithstanding the death of the accused, if the
same may also be predicated on a source of obligation
other than delict. Aricle 1157 of the Civil Code
enumerates these other sources of obligation from which
the civil liability may arise as a result of the same act or
omission:
Law,
Contracts,
Quasi-contracts,
Delicts,Quasi-delicts;
3.
Where the civil liability survives, an
action for recovery therefore may be pursued but only by
way of separate civil action and may be enforced either
against the executor/administrator of the estate of the
accused, depending on the source of obligation aside
from delicts;
4.
Finally, the private offended party need
not fear a forfeiture of his right to file this separate civil
action by prescription, in cases where during the
prosecution of the criminal action and prior to its
extinction, the private offended party instituted together
therewith the civil action. In such case, the statute of
limitations on the civil liability is deemed interrupted
during the pendency of the criminal case, conformably
with provisions of Article 1155 of the Civil Code, that
should thereby avoid any apprehension on a possible
privation of right by prescription.
It is therefore evident from the foregoing
discussion that venturing into the merits of petitioners
appeal given the circumstance of his untimely demise has
become superfluous because, even assuming this Court
would proceed to affirm the lower courts judgment of
conviction, such a ruling would be of no force and effect
as the resultant criminal liability is totally extinguished

25

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
by his death. Consequently, his civil liability arising from
the crime, being civil liability ex delicto, is likewise
extinguished by his death. Since his appeal was still
pending before this Court, there was no final judgment of
conviction upon which an award of civil indemnity could
be based.

34.

PEOPLE VS BERNARDO
(10/5/2015)

FACTS:
Bernardo was charged with violation of B.P. 22.
She was convicted thereof in the RTC. On appeal, she
died. Due to such death, Bernardos heirs argued that the
death of Bernardo extinguished her civil liability. In the
alternative, they contended that any civil liability should
be settled in a separate civil action.
ISSUES:
1.) Whether or not the death of Bernardo
extinguished her civil liability arising out of the
case for B.P. 22.
2.) Whether or not the B.P. 22 case as appealed by
Petition for Review on Certiorari under Rule 45
be dismissed and the civil liabilty be severed
with separately in another civil action.
HELD:
1.) No. Bernardo's civil liability survived her death
as it is based on contract.
As a general rule, the death of an accused
pending appeal extinguishes her criminal liability and
the corresponding civil liability based solely on the
offense (delict). The death amounts to an acquittal of the
accused based on the constitutionally mandated
presumption of innocence in her favor, which can be
overcome only by a finding of guilt - something that
death prevents the court from making. In a sense, death
absolves
the
accused
from
any
earthly
responsibility arising from the offense a divine act
that no human court can reverse, qualify, much less
disregard.
The independent civil liabilities, however,
survive death and an action for recovery therefore
may begenerally pursued but only by filing a
separate civil action and subject to Section 1, Rule
111 of the Rules on Criminal Procedure as
amended. This separate civil action may be enforced
against the estate of the accused.
As a necessary consequence of this special rule,
the civil liabilities arising from the issuance of a
worthless check are deemed instituted in a case for
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violation of B.P. 22; the death of Bernardo did not


automatically extinguish the action. The independent
civil liability based on contract, which was deemed
instituted in the criminal action for B.P. 22, may still
be enforced against her estate in the present case.
In B.P. 22 cases, the criminal action shall be
deemed to include the corresponding civil actions.
Instead of instituting two separate cases, only a single
suit is filed and tried. This rule was enacted to help
declog court dockets, which had been packed with B.P.
22 because creditors used the courts as collectors.
2.) No, because it would be costly, burdensome,
and time-consuming to dismiss the present
case and require the Bumanglags to file a
separate civil action.
Other principles:
It is not required that the accused be convicted
to be entitled to civil liability based on delict. As long as
the facts constituting the offense charged are established
by preponderance of evidence, civil liability may be
awarded. Moreover, the civil liability based ondelict is
deemed instituted with the criminal action unless the
offended party waives the civil action, reserves the right
to institute it separately, or institutes the civil action
prior to the criminal action.

35.

SAN MIGUEL INC VS PEREZ (705


SCRA 38)

FACTS:
San Miguel as represented by Atty. Orendain as
its duly authorized rehabilitation receiver appointed by
the SEC purchased lots from BF Homes. San Miguel
already paid the full price thereof but the Transfer
Certificate Title (TCT) was not yet delivered to it. BF
Homes claimed that it withheld the TCT because Atty.
Orendain had ceased to be its rehabilitation receiver at
the time of the transactions after being meanwhile
replaced as receiver by FBO Network Management, Inc.
BF Homes refused to deliver the 20 TCTs
despite demands promting San Miguel to file a criminal
charge against the directors and officers of BF Homes
with non-delivery of titles in violation of Section 25, in
relation to Section 39, both of Presidential Decree No.
957 (I.S. No. 00-2256). At the same time, San Miguel
Properties sued BF Homes for specific performance in
the HLURB praying to compel BF Homes to release the
TCT in its favor.
ISSUE:

26

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
Whether or not a prejudicial question is
present to the subject criminal case while there is also a
case for specific performance pending before HLURB
that needs to be resolved.

IV.

RULE 112 (PRELIMINARY INVESTIGATION)

HELD:
Yes. The essential elements of a prejudicial
question are provided in Section 7, Rule 111 of the Rules
of Court, to wit: (a) the previously instituted civil action
involves an issue similar or intimately related to the
issue raised in the subsequent criminal action, and (b)
the resolution of such issue determines whether or not
the criminal action may proceed.
Action for specific performance, even if
pending in the HLURB, an administrative agency, raises a
prejudicial question BF Homes posture that the
administrative case for specific performance in the
HLURB posed a prejudicial question that must first be
determined before the criminal case for violation of
Section 25 of Presidential Decree No. 957 could be
resolved is correct.
The concept of a prejudicial question involves a
civil action and a criminal case. Yet, contrary to San
Miguel Properties submission that there could be no
prejudicial question to speak of because no civil action
where the prejudicial question arose was pending, the
action for specific performance in the HLURB raises a
prejudicial question that sufficed to suspend the
proceedings determining the charge for the criminal
violation of Section 25 of Presidential Decree No. 957.
This is true simply because the action for specific
performance was an action civil in nature but could not
be instituted elsewhere except in the HLURB, whose
jurisdiction over the action was exclusive and original.
Conformably with the foregoing, the action for
specific performance in the HLURB would determine
whether or not San Miguel Properties was legally
entitled to demand the delivery of the TCT, while the
criminal action would decide whether or not BF Homes
directors and officers were criminally liable for
withholding the TCT. The resolution of the former must
obviously precede that of the latter, for should the
HLURB hold San Miguel Properties to be not entitled to
the delivery of the TCT because Atty. Orendain did not
have the authority to represent BF Homes in the sale due
to his receivership having been terminated by the SEC,
the basis for the criminal liability for the violation of
Section 25 of Presidential Decree No. 957 would
evaporate, thereby negating the need to proceed with the
criminal case.

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36.

HASHIM VS BUNCAN (71 PHIL 216)

PRINCIPLE (as discussed in the lecture of Judge D):

Viewed in the light of fundamental principles,


the right to a preliminary investigation is
statutory, not constitutional. Its oft-repeated
purpose is to secure the innocent against hasty,
malicious, and oppressive prosecutions, and to
protect him from open and public accusation of
crime, from the trouble, expenses and anxiety
of a public trial, and also to protect the State
from useless and expensive prosecutions.

FACTS:
Petitioner, Hashim, was arrested without warrant for the
possession of counterfeit treasury certificates of the
Commonwealth of the Philippines. He was released on
the same day upon filing a bond. The following day, a
complaint was filed against him with the Office of the City
Fiscal, and after the corresponding investigation
conducted by the respondent Fiscal an information was
lodged against him. A warrant of arrest was issued, and
he was later admitted to bail. Before arraignment, his
counsel filed motions asking the Fiscal to furnish the
clerk of court with the testimony of the witnesses who
testified at the PI. The Fiscal opposed the motion on the
ground that the provisions of the Rules of Court on
"Preliminary Investigation" do not apply to PIs
conducted by the Fiscal for the City of Manila. CFI Manila
Judge Boncan dismissed the motion. By another motion,
petitioner asked the warrant be cancelled and insisted
that the court conduct the PI referred to in Sec 1, Rule
108 of the Rules of Court. The respondent Fiscal filed an
objection on the ground, among others, that there was no
necessity for the court to conduct a PI in this case
because the substitute therefor had already been
performed by the Fiscal. Judge Boncan again dismissed
the motion.
ISSUE: Whether, in a preliminary investigation
conducted by the fiscal for the City of Manila, the accused
is entitled to be informed of the substance of the
testimony and of the evidence presented against him as
marked in Section 13 of Rule 108.
RULING:
No. This examination corresponds to the preliminary
investigation conducted by a justice of the peace or
municipal judge after the arrest of the defendant in
27

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
accordance with Acts 194, 1450 and 1627. To subject the
respondent Fiscal to the provisions of this section is, as
elsewhere emphasized, to prolong an otherwise brief
investigation which said officer is authorized to conduct
under existing laws. Hence, our persuasion that section
11, like section 13, of Rule 108 was not meant to apply to
the preliminary investigations conducted by the City
Fiscal.
Viewed in the light of fundamental principles,
the right to a preliminary investigation is statutory, not
constitutional. Its oft-repeated purpose is to secure the
innocent against hasty, malicious, and oppressive
prosecutions, and to protect him from open and public
accusation of crime, from the trouble, expenses and
anxiety of a public trial, and also to protect the State from
useless and expensive prosecutions. The new Rules were
drafted in the light of the courts experience with cases
where preliminary investigations had dragged on for
weeks and even months. The court had intended to
remove this clog upon the judicial machinery and to
make a preliminary investigation as simple and as
speedy as is consistent with the substantial rights of the
accused. The investigation is advisedly called
preliminary, to be followed by the trial proper. The
investigating judge or prosecuting officer acts upon
probable cause and reasonable belief, not upon proof
beyond a reasonable doubt. The occasion is not for the
full and exhaustive display of the parties evidence; it is
for the presentation of such evidence only as may
engender well-grounded belief that an offense has been
committed and that the accused is probably guilty
thereof. When all this is fulfilled, the accused will not be
permitted to cast about for fancied reasons to delay the
proceedings; the time to ask for more is at the trial. The
petitioners case is a good example. A preliminary
investigation was conducted by the respondent fiscal at
which evidence was adduced warranting the filing of an
information against the petitioner. The in formation was
filed in court, and the presiding judge, upon the strength
of the said preliminary investigation and sworn
information, issued a warrant for the arrest of the
petitioner. To ask for the abstract of testimony at this
stage of the proceedings, ostensibly for no other purpose
than to scrutinize the same evidence which convinced
the respondent fiscal and the presiding judge that there
was probable ground to proceed against the petitioner,
is in effect to ask for another preliminary investigation.
Not this, however, but a trial upon the merits, is what
section 4 of Rule 108 ordains.

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37.

ARROYO VS DOJ (7/23/2013)

PRINCIPLE:

The doctrine of concurrent jurisdiction means


equal jurisdiction to deal with the same subject
matter. Contrary to the contention of the
petitioners, there is no prohibition on
simultaneous exercise of power between two
coordinate bodies. What is prohibited is the
situation where one files a complaint against a
respondent initially with one office (such as
the Comelec) for preliminary investigation
which was immediately acted upon by said
office and the re-filing of substantially the
same complaint with another office (such as
the DOJ). The subsequent assumption of
jurisdiction by the second office over the cases
filed will not be allowed. Indeed, it is a settled
rule that the body or agency that first takes
cognizance of the complaint shall exercise
jurisdiction to the exclusion of the others.

FACTS:
The Comelec issued Resolution No. 9266 approving the
creation of a joint committee with the Department of
Justice (DOJ), which shall conduct preliminary
investigation on the alleged election offenses and
anomalies committed during the 2004 and 2007
elections.
The Comelec and the DOJ issued Joint Order No. 0012011 creating and constituting a Joint Committee and
Fact-Finding Team on the 2004 and 2007 National
Elections electoral fraud and manipulation cases
composed of officials from the DOJ and the Comelec. In
its initial report, the Fact-Finding Team concluded that
manipulation of the results in the May 14, 2007
senatorial elections in the provinces of North and South
Cotabato and Maguindanao were indeed perpetrated.
The Fact-Finding Team recommended that herein
petitioners Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (GMA), et al. to be
subjected to preliminary investigation for electoral
sabotage.
After the preliminary investigation, the COMELEC en
banc adopted a resolution ordering that information/s
for the crime of electoral sabotage be filed against GMA,
et al. while that the charges against Jose Miguel Arroyo,
among others, should be dismissed for insufficiency of
evidence.Thereafter, petitioners filed before the Court
separate Petitions for Certiorari and Prohibition with
Prayer for the Issuance of a Temporary Restraining
Order (TRO) and/or Writ of Preliminary Injunction
assailing the creation of the Joint Panel.

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
ISSUE:
1. Whether or not the creation of the Joint Panel undermines
the decisional independence of the Comelec AND
2. Whether or not the DOJ should conduct preliminary
investigation only when deputized by the Comelec but
not exercise concurrent jurisdiction

RULING:
1.
While recognizing the Comelecs exclusive
power to investigate and prosecute cases under Batas
Pambansa Bilang 881 or the Omnibus Election Code, the
Court pointed out that the framers of the 1987
Constitution did not have such intention. This exclusivity
is thus a legislative enactment that can very well be
amended by Section 43 of RA 9369. Therefore, under the
present law, the Comelec and other prosecuting arms of
the government, such as the DOJ, now exercise
concurrent jurisdiction in the investigation and
prosecution of election offenses.
To be sure, the creation of a Joint Committee is
not repugnant to the concept of "concurrent jurisdiction"
authorized by the amendatory law. As we explained in
our September 18, 2012 Decision:
x x x The doctrine of concurrent jurisdiction means equal
jurisdiction to deal with the same subject matter.
Contrary to the contention of the petitioners, there is no
prohibition on simultaneous exercise of power between
two coordinate bodies. What is prohibited is the
situation where one files a complaint against a
respondent initially with one office (such as the Comelec)
for preliminary investigation which was immediately
acted upon by said office and the re-filing of substantially
the same complaint with another office (such as the DOJ).
The subsequent assumption of jurisdiction by the second
office over the cases filed will not be allowed. Indeed, it
is a settled rule that the body or agency that first takes
cognizance of the complaint shall exercise jurisdiction to
the exclusion of the others.xxx
Notwithstanding the grant of concurrent
jurisdiction, the Comelec and the DOJ nevertheless
included a provision in the assailed Joint Order whereby
the resolutions of the Joint Committee finding probable
cause for election offenses shall still be approved by the
Comelec in accordance with the Comelec Rules of
Procedure.45 With more reason, therefore, that we
cannot consider the creation of the Joint Committee as an
abdication of the Comelecs independence enshrined in
the 1987 Constitution.
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2.
The procedure in conducting the preliminary
investigation is governed by Rule 112 of the Revised
Rules on Criminal Procedure and Rule 34 of the Comelec
Rules of Procedure. Under both Rules,46 the respondent
shall submit his counter-affidavit and that of his
witnesses and other supporting documents relied upon
for his defense, within ten (10) days from receipt of the
subpoena, with the complaint and supporting affidavits
and documents.47 Also in both Rules, respondent is given
the right to examine evidence, but such right of
examination is limited only to the documents or evidence
submitted by complainants which she may not have been
furnished and to copy them at her expense.
As to GMAs right violated when her motion for
extension of time within which to submit her counteraffidavit and countervailing evidence was consequently
denied. The Rules use the term "shall" in requiring the
respondent to submit counter-affidavit and other
countervailing evidence within ten (10) days from
receipt of the subpoena. It is settled that the use of the
word "shall" which is a word of command, underscores
the mandatory character of the rule.50 As in any other
rule, though, liberality in the application may be allowed
provided that the party is able to present a compelling
justification for the non-observance of the mandatory
rules. In the 2008 Revised Manual for Prosecutors,
investigating prosecutors allow or grant motions or
requests for extension of time to submit counteraffidavits when the interest of justice demands that
respondent be given reasonable time or sufficient
opportunity to engage the services of counsel; examine
voluminous records submitted in support of the
complaint or undertake research on novel, complicated
or technical questions or issues of law and facts of the
case. PETITION DENIED.

38.

PEOPLE VS BELTRAN (6/1/2007)

PRINCIPLE:

Inquest proceedings are proper only when the


accused has been lawfully arrested without
warrant.

A preliminary investigation is the crucial sieve in the


criminal justice system which spells for an individual the
difference between months if not years of agonizing trial
and possibly jail term, on the one hand, and peace of
mind and liberty, on the other hand. Thus, we have
characterized the right to a preliminary investigation as
not "a mere formal or technical right" but a "substantive"

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
one, forming part of due process in criminal
justice.41 This especially holds true here where the
offense charged is punishable by reclusion perpetua and
may be non-bailable for those accused as principals.

In his Comment to the petition, the Solicitor


General claims that Beltrans inquest for Rebellion was
valid and that the RTC Makati correctly found probable
cause to try Beltran for such felony.

FACTS:

ISSUE:

These are consolidated petitions for the writs of


prohibition and certiorari to enjoin petitioners
prosecution for Rebellion and to set aside the rulings of
the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Regional Trial
Court of Makati City (RTC Makati) on the investigation
and prosecution of petitioners cases.

1. Whether the inquest proceeding against Beltran for


Rebellion was valid and

Petitioner in G.R. No. 175013, Crispin B. Beltran


(Beltran), and petitioners in G.R. Nos. 172074-76, are
members of the House of Representatives representing
various party-list groups. Petitioners all face charges for
Rebellion under Article 134 in relation to Article 135 of
the Revised Penal Code in two criminal cases pending
with the RTC Makati. Beltran was arrested without a
warrant and the arresting officers did not inform Beltran
of the crime for which he was arrested. On that evening,
Beltran was subjected to an inquest at the Quezon City
Hall of Justice for Inciting to Sedition under Article 142 of
the Revised Penal Code based on a speech Beltran
allegedly gave during a rally in Quezon City on 24
February 2006, on the occasion of the 20thanniversary
of the EDSA Revolution. The inquest was based on the
joint affidavit of Beltrans arresting officers who claimed
to have been present at the rally. The authorities brought
back Beltran to Camp Crame where he was subjected to
a second inquest, this time for Rebellion. The letters
referred to the DOJ for appropriate action the results of
the CIDGs investigation implicating Beltran, the
petitioners in G.R. Nos. 172074-76, San Juan, and several
others as leaders and promoters of an alleged foiled
plot to overthrow the Arroyo government. The plot was
supposed to be carried out jointly by members of the
Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP)and the
Makabayang Kawal ng Pilipinas (MKP), which have
formed a tactical alliance.
The DOJ panel of prosecutors issued a
Resolution finding probable cause to indict Beltran and
San Juan as leaders/promoters of Rebellion. The
Information alleged that Beltran, San Juan, and other
individuals conspiring and confederating with each
other, x x x, did then and there willfully, unlawfully, and
feloniously form a tactical alliance between the
CPP/NPA, renamed as Partidong Komunista ngPilipinas
(PKP) and its armed regular members as Katipunan ng
Anak ng Bayan (KAB) with theMakabayang Kawal ng
Pilipinas (MKP) and thereby rise publicly and take up
arms against the dulyconstituted government.

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2. whether the preliminary investigation On the Ladlad


and Maza Petitions were proper?
RULING:
1. The Inquest Proceeding against Beltran for
Rebellion is Void. Inquest proceedings are proper only
when the accused has been lawfully arrested without
warrant.
The joint affidavit of Beltrans arresting officers15 states
that the officers arrested Beltran, without a
warrant,16 for Inciting to Sedition, and not for Rebellion.
Thus, the inquest prosecutor could only have conducted
as he did conduct an inquest for Inciting to Sedition
and no other. Consequently, when another group of
prosecutors subjected Beltran to a second inquest
proceeding for Rebellion, they overstepped their
authority rendering the second inquest void. None of
Beltrans arresting officers saw Beltran commit, in their
presence, the crime of Rebellion. Nor did they have
personal knowledge of facts and circumstances that
Beltran had just committed Rebellion, sufficient to form
probable cause to believe that he had committed
Rebellion. What these arresting officers alleged in their
affidavit is that they saw and heard Beltran make an
allegedly seditious speech on 24 February 2006.17
Indeed, under DOJ Circular No. 61, dated 21
September 1993, the initial duty of the inquest officer is
to determine if the arrest of the detained person was
made "in accordance with the provisions of paragraphs
(a) and (b) of Section 5, Rule 113."18 If the arrest was not
properly effected, the inquest officer should proceed
under Section 9 of Circular No. 61 which provides:
Where Arrest Not Properly Effected. Should
the Inquest Officer find that the arrest was not made in
accordance with the Rules, he shall:
a) recommend the release of the person
arrested or detained;
b) note down the disposition on the referral
document;

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
c) prepare a brief memorandum indicating the
reasons for the action taken; and
d) forward the same, together with the record
of the case, to the City or Provincial Prosecutor
for appropriate action.
For the failure of Beltrans panel of inquest
prosecutors to comply with Section 7, Rule 112 in
relation to Section 5, Rule 113 and DOJ Circular No. 61,
we declare Beltrans inquest void.19 Beltran would have
been entitled to a preliminary investigation had he not
asked the trial court to make a judicial determination of
probable cause, which effectively took the place of such
proceeding.
2. The Preliminary Investigation was Tainted With
Irregularities. On the Ladlad and Maza Petitions. The
procedure for preliminary investigation of offenses
punishable by at least four years, two months and one
day is outlined in Section 3, Rule 112 of the Revised Rules
of Criminal Procedure. Instead of following this
procedure scrupulously, "so that the constitutional right
to liberty of a potential accused can be protected from
any material damage,"38 respondent prosecutors
nonchalantly disregarded it. Respondent prosecutors
failed to comply with Section 3(a) of Rule 112 which
provides that the complaint (which, with its attachment,
must be of such number as there are respondents) be
accompanied by the affidavits of the complainant and his
witnesses, subscribed and sworn to before any
prosecutor or government official authorized to
administer oath, or, in their absence or
unavailability, before a notary public. Respondent
prosecutors treated the unsubscribed letters of Tanigue
and Mendoza of the CIDG, PNP as complaints39 and
accepted the affidavits attached to the letters even
though some of them were notarized by a notary public
without any showing that a prosecutor or qualified
government official was unavailable as required by
Section 3(a) of Rule 112.
Further, Section 3(b) of Rule 112 mandates that
the prosecutor, after receiving the complaint, must
determine if there are grounds to continue with the
investigation. If there is none, he shall dismiss the case,
otherwise he shall "issue a subpoena to the
respondents." Here, after receiving the CIDG letters,
respondent prosecutors peremptorily issued subpoenas
to petitioners requiring them to appear at the DOJ office
on 13 March 2006 "to secure copies of the complaints
and its attachments." By peremptorily issuing the
subpoenas to petitioners, tolerating the complainants
antics during the investigation, and distributing copies of
a witness affidavit to members of the media knowing
that petitioners have not had the opportunity to examine
the charges against them, respondent prosecutors not
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only trivialized the investigation but also lent credence


to petitioners claim that the entire proceeding was a
sham.
A preliminary investigation is the crucial sieve
in the criminal justice system which spells for an
individual the difference between months if not years of
agonizing trial and possibly jail term, on the one hand,
and peace of mind and liberty, on the other hand. Thus,
we have characterized the right to a preliminary
investigation as not "a mere formal or technical right"
but a "substantive" one, forming part of due process in
criminal justice.41 This especially holds true here where
the offense charged is punishable by reclusion perpetua
and may be non-bailable for those accused as principals.

39.

TATAD VS SANDIGANBAYAN (159


SCRA 70)

PRINCIPLE:

The inordinate delay in terminating the


preliminary investigation (5 years in this
case) and filing the information in the instant
case is violative of the constitutionally
guaranteed right of the petitioner to due
process and to a speedy disposition of the
cases against him.

FACTS:
The complainant, Antonio de los Reyes, originally filed
what he termed "a report" with the Legal Panel of the
Presidential Security Command (PSC) on October 1974,
containing charges of alleged violations of Rep. Act No.
3019 against then Secretary of Public Information
Francisco S. Tatad. The "report" was made to "sleep" in
the office of the PSC until the end of 1979 when it became
widely known that Secretary (then Minister) Tatad had a
falling out with President Marcos and had resigned from
the Cabinet. On December 12, 1979, the 1974 complaint
was resurrected in the form of a formal complaint filed
with the Tanodbayan. The Tanodbayan acted on the
complaint on April 1, 1980-which was around two
months after petitioner Tatad's resignation was accepted
by Pres. Marcos by referring the complaint to the CIS,
Presidential Security Command, for investigation and
report. On June 16, 1980, the CIS report was submitted to
the Tanodbayan, recommending the filing of charges for
graft and corrupt practices against former Minister Tatad
and Antonio L. Cantero. By October 25, 1982, all
affidavits and counter-affidavits were in the case was

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
already for disposition by the Tanodbayan. However, it
was only on July 5, 1985 that a resolution was approved
by the Tanodbayan, recommending the ring of the
corresponding criminal informations against the accused
Francisco Tatad. Five (5) criminal informations were
filed with the Sandiganbayan on June 12, 1985, all
against petitioner Tatad alone.

After a careful review of the facts and


circumstances of this case, we are constrained to hold
that the inordinate delay in terminating the preliminary
investigation and filing the information in the instant
case is violative of the constitutionally guaranteed right
of the petitioner to due process and to a speedy
disposition of the cases against him.

ISSUE: Was petitioner deprived of his constitutional


right to due process and the right to "speedy disposition"
of the cases against him as guaranteed by the
Constitution?

40.
41.

RULING:

42.

We find the long delay in the termination of the


preliminary investigation by the Tanodbayan in the
instant case to be violative of the constitutional right of
the accused to due process. Substantial adherence to the
requirements of the law governing the conduct of
preliminary investigation,
including substantial
compliance with the time limitation prescribed by the
law for the resolution of the case by the prosecutor, is
part of the procedural due process constitutionally
guaranteed by the fundamental law. Not only under the
broad umbrella of the due process clause, but under the
constitutional guarantee of "speedy disposition" of cases
as embodied in Section 16 of the Bill of Rights (both in
the 1973 and the 1987 Constitutions), the inordinate
delay is violative of the petitioner's constitutional rights.
A delay of close to three (3) years can not be deemed
reasonable or justifiable in the light of the circumstance
obtaining in the case at bar. We are not impressed by the
attempt of the Sandiganbayan to sanitize the long delay
by indulging in the speculative assumption that "the
delay may be due to a painstaking and gruelling scrutiny
by the Tanodbayan as to whether the evidence presented
during the preliminary investigation merited
prosecution of a former high ranking government
official." In the first place, such a statement suggests a
double standard of treatment, which must be
emphatically rejected. Secondly, three out of the five
charges against the petitioner were for his alleged failure
to file his sworn statement of assets and liabilities
required by Republic Act No. 3019, which certainly did
not involve complicated legal and factual issues
necessitating such "painstaking and gruelling scrutiny"
as would justify a delay of almost three years in
terminating the preliminary investigation. The other two
charges relating to alleged bribery and alleged giving of
unwarranted benefits to a relative, while presenting
more substantial legal and factual issues, certainly do not
warrant or justify the period of three years, which it took
the Tanodbayan to resolve the case.

43.
44.

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A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

45.

COSCOLUELA VS SANDIGANBAYAN
(G.R. 191411)
WINSTON GARCIA CASE (no
citation)
PEREZ VS HAGONOY BANK
(3/29/2001)
SANTOS VS GO (10/19/2005)
VILLANUEVA VS OPLE (475 SCRA
531)

CRESPO VS MOGUL (151 SCRA


462)

PRINCIPLE:

The rule therefore in this jurisdiction is that


once a complaint or information is filed in
Court any disposition of the case as its
dismissal or the conviction or acquittal of the
accused rests in the sound discretion of the
Court. Although the fiscal retains the direction
and control of the prosecution of criminal
cases even while the case is already in Court he
cannot impose his opinion on the trial court.
The Court is the best and sole judge on what to
do with the case before it

FACTS:
Assistant Fiscal Proceso K. de Gala with the approval of
the Provincial Fiscal filed an information for estafa
against Mario Fl. Crespo When the case was set for
arraigment the accused filed a motion to defer
arraignment on the ground that there was a pending
petition for review filed with the Secretary of Justice of
the resolution of the Office of the Provincial Fiscal for the
filing of the information. the presiding judge, Leodegario
L. Mogul, denied the motion. 2 A motion for
reconsideration of the order was denied.
A petition for certiorari and prohibition with prayer for
a preliminary writ of injunction was filed by the accused
in the Court of Appeals 4 In an order of August 17, 1977
the Court of Appeals restrained Judge Mogul from

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
proceeding with the arraignment of the accused until
further orders of the Court. 5
A decision was rendered by the Court of Appeals
granting the writ and perpetually restraining the judge
from enforcing his threat to compel the arraignment of
the accused in the case until the Department of Justice
shall have finally resolved the petition for review. 7
ThenUndersecretary of Justice, Hon.Catalino Macaraig,
Jr., resolving the petition for review reversed the
resolution of the Office of the Provincial Fiscal and
directed the fiscal to move for immediate dismissal of the
information filed against the accused. 8 A motion to
dismiss for insufficiency of evidence was filed by the
Provincial Fiscal .the Judge denied the motion and set the
arraigniment.

ISSUE: whether the trial court acting on a motion to


dismiss a criminal case filed by the Provincial Fiscal upon
instructions of the Secretary of Justice to whom the case
was elevated for review, may refuse to grant the motion
and insist on the arraignment and trial on the merits?
Ruling:
Yes.
While it is true that the fiscal has the quasi
judicial discretion to determine whether or not a
criminal case should be filed in court or not, once the case
had already been brought to Court whatever disposition
the fiscal may feel should be proper in the case thereafter
should be addressed for the consideration of the
Court, 35 The only qualification is that the action of the
Court must not impair the substantial rights of the
accused. 36 or the right of the People to due process of
law. 36a
Whether the accused had been arraigned or not and
whether it was due to a reinvestigation by the fiscal or a
review by the Secretary of Justice whereby a motion to
dismiss was submitted to the Court, the Court in the
exercise of its discretion may grant the motion or deny it
and require that the trial on the merits proceed for the
proper determination of the case.
The role of the fiscal or prosecutor as We all know is to
see that justice is done and not necessarily to secure the
conviction of the person accused before the Courts. Thus,
in spite of his opinion to the contrary, it is the duty of the
fiscal to proceed with the presentation of evidence of the
prosecution to the Court to enable the Court to arrive at
its own independent judgment as to whether the accused
should be convicted or acquitted. The fiscal should not
shirk from the responsibility of appearing for the People
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of the Philippines even under such circumstances much


less should he abandon the prosecution of the case
leaving it to the hands of a private prosecutor for then the
entire proceedings will be null and void. 37 The least that
the fiscal should do is to continue to appear for the
prosecution although he may turn over the presentation
of the evidence to the private prosecutor but still under
his direction and control. 38
The rule therefore in this jurisdiction is that once a
complaint or information is filed in Court any disposition
of the case as its dismissal or the conviction or acquittal
of the accused rests in the sound discretion of the Court.
Although the fiscal retains the direction and control of
the prosecution of criminal cases even while the case is
already in Court he cannot impose his opinion on the trial
court. The Court is the best and sole judge on what to do
with the case before it. The determination of the case is
within its exclusive jurisdiction and competence. A
motion to dismiss the case filed by the fiscal should be
addressed to the Court who has the option to grant or
deny the same. It does not matter if this is done before or
after the arraignment of the accused or that the motion
was filed after a reinvestigation or upon instructions of
the Secretary of Justice who reviewed the records of the
investigation.
In order therefor to avoid such a situation whereby the
opinion of the Secretary of Justice who reviewed the
action of the fiscal may be disregarded by the trial court,
the Secretary of Justice should, as far as practicable,
refrain from entertaining a petition for review or appeal
from the action of the fiscal, when the complaint or
information has already been filed in Court. The matter
should be left entirely for the determination of the Court.
WHEREFORE, the petition is DISMISSED.

46.

CEREZO VS PEOPLE (6/1/2011)

PRINCIPLE:

Well-entrenched is the rule that once a case


is filed with the court, any disposition of it
rests on the sound discretion of the court. In
thus resolving a motion to dismiss a case or
to withdraw an Information, the trial court
should not rely solely and merely on the
findings of the public prosecutor or the
Secretary of Justice.[20] It is the courts
bounden duty to assess independently the
merits of the motion, and this assessment
must be embodied in a written order
disposing of the motion.[21]

The Facts

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
Joseph Cerezo filed a complaint for libel against
respondents Juliet Yaneza, Pablo Abunda, Jr., and Vicente
Afulugencia (respondents), as well as Oscar Mapalo
(Mapalo).[5]
Finding probable cause to indict respondents,[6] the
Quezon City Prosecutors Office (OP-QC) filed the
corresponding Information against them before the
RTC.[7]
Respondents thereafter filed a Motion for
Reconsideration and/or Motion to Re-evaluate
Prosecutions Evidence before the OP-QC.[8]
the OP-QC reversed its earlier finding and
recommended
the
withdrawal
of
the
Information.[9] Consequently, a Motion to Dismiss
and Withdraw Information was filed before the RTC.
In deference to the prosecutors last
resolution, the RTC ordered the criminal case
dismissed in its Order dated March 17, 2004, viz.:
Settled is the rule that the determination of the
persons to be prosecuted rests primarily with the
Public Prosecutor who is vested with quasi-judicial
discretion in the discharge of this function. Being
vested with such power, he can reconsider his own
resolution if he finds that there is reasonable ground
to do so. x x x.
Aggrieved,
petitioner
moved
for
reconsideration of the said Order, arguing that the
November 20, 2003 OP-QC resolution has not yet
attained finality, considering that the same was the
subject of a Petition for Review filed before the
Department of Justice (DOJ).[12]The RTC deferred
action on the said motion to await the resolution of
the DOJ.[13]
The Secretary of Justice promulgated his
resolution reversing and setting aside the OP-QCs
November 20, 2003 resolution, and directing the
latter to refile the earlier Information for libel.[14]
On October 24, 2006, the RTC issued its first
assailed Order granting petitioners motion for
reconsideration, conformably with the resolution of the
DOJ Secretary
Respondents moved for reconsideration, but the
motion was denied in the RTCs second assailed
Order.
ISSUE: Whether or not the judge is bound by the
recommendation of the prosecutor and the ruling of the
secretary of justice?

the public prosecutor or the Secretary of Justice.[20] It is


the courts bounden duty to assess independently the
merits of the motion, and this assessment must be
embodied in a written order disposing of the
motion.[21] While the recommendation of the prosecutor
or the ruling of the Secretary of Justice is persuasive, it is
not binding on courts.
In this case, it is obvious from the March 17, 2004 Order
of the RTC, dismissing the criminal case, that the RTC
judge failed to make his own determination of whether
or not there was a prima facie case to hold respondents
for trial. He failed to make an independent evaluation or
assessment of the merits of the case. The RTC judge
blindly relied on the manifestation and recommendation
of the prosecutor when he should have been more
circumspect and judicious in resolving the Motion to
Dismiss and Withdraw Information especially so when
the prosecution appeared to be uncertain, undecided,
and irresolute on whether to indict respondents.
The same holds true with respect to the October 24,
2006 Order, which reinstated the case. The RTC judge
failed to make a separate evaluation and merely awaited
the resolution of the DOJ Secretary. This is evident from
the general tenor of the Order and highlighted in the
following portion thereof:
As discussed during the hearing of the Motion
for Reconsideration, the Court will resolve it depending
on the outcome of the Petition for Review. Considering
the findings of the Department of Justice reversing the
resolution of the City Prosecutor, the Court gives
favorable action to the Motion for Reconsideration.[22]
By relying solely on the manifestation of the public
prosecutor and the resolution of the DOJ Secretary, the
trial court abdicated its judicial power and refused to
perform a positive duty enjoined by law. The said Orders
were thus stained with grave abuse of discretion and
violated the complainants right to due process. They
were void, had no legal standing, and produced no effect
whatsoever.[23]

47.

AGCAOILI VS COLINA (240 SCRA


482) (NOT FOUND)

48.

SOLIVEN VS MAKASIAR
(11/14/1988)

Our Ruling
NO.

Principal issues:

Well-entrenched is the rule that once a case is


filed with the court, any disposition of it rests on the
sound discretion of the court. In thus resolving a motion
to dismiss a case or to withdraw an Information, the trial
court should not rely solely and merely on the findings of

(1) whether or not petitioners were denied due process


when information for libel were filed against them
although the finding of the existence of a prima facie case
was still under review by the Secretary of Justice and,
subsequently, by the President;

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(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
(2) whether or not the constitutional rights of Beltran
were violated when respondent RTC judge issued a
warrant for his arrest without personally examining the
complainant and the witnesses, if any, to determine
probable cause
Principles:
1. The allegation of denial of due process of law in the
preliminary investigation is negated by the fact that
instead of submitting his counter- affidavits, he filed a
"Motion to Declare Proceedings Closed," in effect waiving
his right to refute the complaint by filing counteraffidavits. Due process of law does not require that the
respondent in a criminal case actually file his counteraffidavits before the preliminary investigation is deemed
completed. All that is required is that the respondent be
given the opportunity to submit counter-affidavits if he
is so minded.
2. What the Constitution underscores is the exclusive and
personal responsibility of the issuing judge to satisfy
himself of the existence of probable cause. In satisfying
himself of the existence of probable cause for the
issuance of a warrant of arrest, the judge is not required
to personally examine the complainant and his
witnesses. Following established doctrine and
procedure, he shall: (1) personally evaluate the report
and the supporting documents submitted by the fiscal
regarding the existence of probable cause and, on the
basis thereof, issue a warrant of arrest; or (2) if on the
basis thereof he finds no probable cause, he may
disregard the fiscal's report and require the submission
of supporting affidavits of witnesses to aid him in
arriving at a conclusion as to the existence of probable
cause.

49.

OCAMPO VS ABANDO (2/11/2014)

Principle:

A preliminary investigation is "not a casual


affair." It is conducted to protect the innocent
from the embarrassment, expense and anxiety
of a public trial. While the right to have a
preliminary investigation before trial is
statutory rather than constitutional, it is a
substantive right and a component of due
process in the administration of criminal
justice.
Probable cause for the issuance of a warrant of
arrest has been defined as "such facts and
circumstances which would lead a reasonably
discreet and prudent man to believe that an
offense has been committed by the person
sought to be arrested."

Facts:

QUANTUM LEAP (USJ-R SCHOOL OF LAW (BATCH 2017)


A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

Police Chief Inspector George L. Almaden of the PNP


Regional Office 8 and Staff Judge Advocate Army Captain
Tiu of the 8th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army
sent 12 undated letters to the Provincial Prosecutor of
Leyte through Assistant Provincial Prosecutor Vivero.
The letters requested appropriate legal action on 12
complaint-affidavits attached therewith accusing 71
named members of the CPP/NPA/NDFP of murder,
including petitioners herein along with several other
unnamed members.
On the basis of the 12 letters and their attachments,
Prosecutor Vivero issued a subpoena requiring, among
others, petitioners to submit their counter-affidavits and
those of their witnesses. Petitioner Ocampo submitted
his counter-affidavit. Petitioners Echanis and Baylosis
did not file counter-affidavits because they were
allegedly not served the copy of the complaint and the
attached documents or evidence. Counsel of petitioner
Ladlad made a formal entry of appearance on 8
December 2006 during the preliminary investigation.
However, petitioner Ladlad did not file a counteraffidavit because he was allegedly not served a subpoena.
On 6 March 2007, Judge Abando issued an Order finding
probable cause "in the commission by all mentioned
accused of the crime charged." He ordered the issuance
of warrants of arrest against them with no recommended
bail for their temporary liberty.
Issue:
WON Petitioners were accorded due process during
preliminary investigation and in the issuance of the
warrants of arrest.
Held:
A preliminary investigation is "not a casual affair." It is
conducted to protect the innocent from the
embarrassment, expense and anxiety of a public trial.
While the right to have a preliminary investigation
before trial is statutory rather than constitutional, it is a
substantive right and a component of due process in the
administration of criminal justice.
Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution provides that "no
search warrant or warrant of arrest shall issue except
upon probable cause to be determined personally by the
judge after examination under oath or affirmation of the
complainant and the witnesses he may produce."
Probable cause for the issuance of a warrant of arrest has
been defined as "such facts and circumstances which
would lead a reasonably discreet and prudent man to
believe that an offense has been committed by the person
sought to be arrested." Although the Constitution
provides that probable cause shall be determined by the
judge after an examination under oath or an affirmation
of the complainant and the witnesses, we have ruled that
35

REMEDIAL LAW REVIEW II CASE DIGESTS


(JUDGE ANACLETO DEBALUCOS)
a hearing is not necessary for the determination thereof.
In fact, the judges personal examination of the
complainant and the witnesses is not mandatory and
indispensable for determining the aptness of issuing a
warrant of arrest.

50.

MINO VS NAVARRO (8/28/2007)

Principle:
When the preliminary investigation was conducted by
the prosecutor, the judge has three options after the
filing of the information and upon evaluation of the
prosecutors resolution and its supporting evidence.
He/she may (a) dismiss the case, (b) issue a warrant of
arrest or a commitment order, as the case may be, against
the accused, or (c) require the prosecution to submit
additional evidence to support the existence of probable
cause.
Facts:
By letter of March 7, 20051 addressed to the Court
Administrator which was received by the Office of the
Court Administrator (OCA) on March 14, 2005, Sandra
Mino (complainant) charged Judge Donato Sotero A.
Navarro (respondent), Presiding Judge of Branch 6 of the
Municipal Trial Court in Cities in Cebu City, with gross
inexcusable negligence arising from his failure to issue a
warrant of arrest, within the period prescribed by the
Rules of Court, in Criminal Case No. 124511-R, People of
the Philippines v. Allan Arcilla, for Attempted Homicide.
It appears that the above-said criminal case was raffled
to the sala of respondent on October 21, 2003. Despite
repeated requests for the issuance of a warrant for the
arrest of the accused, respondent did not grant the same.
After ninety seven (97) days from the raffling of the case
to his sala or on February 5, 2004, respondent issued an
Order2 declaring that on the basis of the affidavits of the
offended party and his witness, "the accused may
actually be charged only with Grave Threats, as there is
no probable cause to believe that the accused had acted
with intent to kill, not having persisted in his threat
against the offended party."

No. SEC. 6. When warrant of arrest may issue. (a) By the


Regional Trial Court. Within ten (10) days from the
filing of the compliant or information, the judge shall
personally evaluate the resolution of the prosecutor and
its supporting evidence. He may immediately dismiss the
case if the evidence on record fails to establish probable
cause. If he finds probable cause, he shall issue a warrant
of arrest, or a commitment order if the accused has
already been arrested pursuant to a warrant issued by
the judge who conducted the preliminary investigation
or when the complaint or information was filed pursuant
to [S]ection 7 of this Rule. In case of doubt on the
existence of probable cause, the judge may order the
prosecution to present additional evidence within five
(5) days from notice and the issue must be resolved by
the court within thirty (30) days from the filing of the
complaint or information.
On the issue of downgrading the crime charged from
attempted homicide to grave threats, respondent judge
manifested ignorance of the rule mentioned above. When
the preliminary investigation was conducted by the
prosecutor, the judge has three options after the filing of
the information and upon evaluation of the prosecutors
resolution and its supporting evidence. He/she may (a)
dismiss the case, (b) issue a warrant of arrest or a
commitment order, as the case may be, against the
accused, or (c) require the prosecution to submit
additional evidence to support the existence of probable
cause. Nowhere in the rule was the judge authorized to
determine the proper crime that the accused should be
charged with. The options given to the judge are
exclusive, and preclude him/her from interfering with
the discretion of the public prosecutor in evaluating the
offense charged.

51.

LEVISTE ALAMEDA (G.R. 182677


8/3/2010)

Respondent accordingly ordered the remand of the


record of the case to the Office of the City Prosecutor "so
that the information may be amended to reflect the
proper crime."
Issue:
WON judges are authorized to the proper crime that the
accused should be charged with.
Held:
QUANTUM LEAP (USJ-R SCHOOL OF LAW (BATCH 2017)
A LEAP TO SUCCEED.

36