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Navallo vs.

Sandiganbayan
G.R. No. 97214, July 18, 1994

Facts:
Petitioner Ernesto Navallo, as the Collecting and Disbursing Officer of Numancia National
Vocational School was charged of malversation. A warrant of arrest was issued, but he was not
immediately found. When he was finally arrested, he posted bail bond. When arraigned by the
Regional Trial Court, he pleaded not guilty.

In his defense, he contend that he have been deprived of his constitutional rights under Section
12, Article III, of the 1987 Constitution. He claimed that signed the cash count only because he
was pressured by Macasemo who assured him that Macasemo would settle everything. The
collections in 1976, reflected in the Statement of Accountability, were not his but those of
Macasemo, his superior, who had unliquidated cash advances. He also admitted having
received the demand letter but he did not reply because he was already in Manila looking for
another employment. He was in Manila when the case was filed against him. He did not exert
any effort to have Macasemo appear in the preliminary investigation, relying instead on
Macasemo's assurance that he would settle the matter.

Issue:
Whether or not petitioner was under custodial investigation when he signed the certification
prepared by State Auditing Examiner

Ruling:
No, A person under a normal audit examination is not under custodial investigation. An audit
examiner himself can hardly be deemed to be the law enforcement officer. Thus he cannot
invoke such right for he was not under custodial investigation. Furthermore, it cannot be said
that he has been pressured to sign the auditors report, but may have been persuaded only.