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State Prosecutors v Muro (Forex Restrictions, Imelda Marcos; Judicial notice on a statute prior to publishing/ effectivity)

Facts: Judge Muro dismissed 11 cases against Mrs. Marcos for violation of CB Circular 960 or the CB Foreign Exchange Restrictions. The
dismissal was based solely on newspaper reports concerning the announcement of the president of the Philippines of the lifting of all foreign
exchange restrictions as embodied in the circular. Judge said that the announcement had the effect of repealing CB 960.

Issue: WON dismissal of the cases were proper.

HELD: No.

Matters of judicial notice have 3 material requisites:

1. matter of common and general knowledge;

2. it must be authoritatively settled and not doubtful or uncertain; and

3. known to be w/in the limits of jurisdiction of the court.

The principal guide in determining what facts may be assumed to be judicially known is that of notoriety. Hence, it can be said that
judicial notice is limited to facts evidenced by public records and facts of general notoriety (court assumes that the matter is so
notorious that it will not be disputed).

Judicial notice is not equivalent to judicial knowledge. The mere personal knowledge of the judge is not the judicial knowledge of the
court, and he is not authorized to make his individual knowledge of a fact, not generally or professionally known, the basis of his
action.

Things of common knowledge, of which courts take judicial notice, may be matters coming to the knowledge of men generally in the
course of the ordinary experiences of life, or they may be matters which are generally accepted by mankind as true and are capable
of ready and unquestioned demonstration. Thus, facts which are universally known, and which may be found in encyclopedias,
dictionaries or other publications, are judicially noticed, provided they are of such universal notoriety and so generally understood that
they may be regarded as forming part of the common knowledge of every person.

Judicial notice cannot be taken of a statute before it becomes effective. A law not yet in force and hence still inexistent,
cannot be of common knowledge capable of unquestionable demonstration.

Spouses Latip v. Chua (Goodwill money, Baclaran store lease)

Facts: Respondent Chua is the owner of Roferxane Building, a commercial building, located at No. 158 Quirino Avenue corner Redemptorist
Road, Barangay Baclaran, Paraaque City.

Rosalie filed a complaint for unlawful detainer plus damages against petitioners (Spouses Latip). Rosalie attached to the complaint a contract of
lease over two cubicles in Roferxane Bldg., signed by Rosalie, as lessor, and by Spouses Latip, as lessees thereof.

Spouses Latip asserted that Rosalie offered for sale lease rights over two (2) cubicles in Roferxane Bldg.. According to Spouses Latip, the
immediate payment of P2,570,000.00 would be used to finish construction of the building giving them first priority in the occupation of the
finished cubicles.

MeTC and RTC ruled in favor of the spouses Latip but CA reversed the decision. CA ,in ruling for Rosalie and upholding the ejectment of
Spouses Latip, took judicial notice of the alleged practice of prospective lessees in the Baclaran area to pay goodwill money to the lessor.

Issue: WON Judicial notice was proper.

Held: No. Judicial notice does not meet the requisite of notoriety.

SC reiterated the requisite of notoriety for the taking of judicial notice in the recent case of Expertravel & Tours, Inc. v. Court of Appeals, which
cited State Prosecutors:

Moreover, a judicially noticed fact must be one not subject to a reasonable dispute in that it is either: (1) generally known within the territorial
jurisdiction of the trial court; or (2) capable of accurate and ready determination by resorting to sources whose accuracy cannot reasonably be
questionable.

Things of common knowledge, of which courts take judicial notice, may be matters coming to the knowledge of men generally in the course of
the ordinary experiences of life, or they may be matters which are generally accepted by mankind as true and are capable of ready and
unquestioned demonstration. Thus, facts which are universally known, and which may be found in encyclopedias, dictionaries or other
publications, are judicially noticed, provided, they are such of universal notoriety and so generally understood that they may be regarded as
forming part of the common knowledge of every person. As the common knowledge of man ranges far and wide, a wide variety of particular
facts have been judicially noticed as being matters of common knowledge. But a court cannot take judicial notice of any fact which, in part, is
dependent on the existence or non-existence of a fact of which the court has no constructive knowledge.

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From the foregoing provisions of law and our holdings thereon, it is apparent that the matter which the appellate court took judicial notice of
does not meet the requisite of notoriety. To begin with, only the CA took judicial notice of this supposed practice to pay goodwill money to the
lessor in the Baclaran area. Neither the MeTC nor the RTC, with the former even ruling in favor of Rosalie, found that the practice was of
common knowledge or notoriously known.

We note that the RTC specifically ruled that Rosalie, apart from her bare allegation, adduced no evidence to prove her claim that the amount of
P2,570,000.00 simply constituted the payment of goodwill money. Subsequently, Rosalie attached an annex to her petition for review before the
CA, containing a joint declaration under oath by other stallholders in Roferxane Bldg. that they had paid goodwill money to Rosalie as their
lessor. On this score, we emphasize that the reason why our rules on evidence provide for matters that need not be proved under Rule 129,
specifically on judicial notice, is to dispense with the taking of the usual form of evidence on a certain matter so notoriously known, it will not be
disputed by the parties.

However, in this case, the requisite of notoriety is belied by the necessity of attaching documentary evidence, i.e., the Joint Affidavit of
the stallholders, to Rosalies appeal before the CA. In short, the alleged practice still had to be proven by Rosalie; contravening the
title itself of Rule 129 of the Rules of Court What need not be proved.

Apparently, only that particular division of the CA had knowledge of the practice to pay goodwill money in the Baclaran area. As was held in
State Prosecutors, justices and judges alike ought to be reminded that the power to take judicial notice must be exercised with caution and
every reasonable doubt on the subject should be ample reason for the claim of judicial notice to be promptly resolved in the negative.

Ultimately, on the issue of whether Spouses Latip ought to be ejected from the leased cubicles, what remains in evidence is the documentary
evidence signed by both parties the contract of lease and the receipts evidencing payment of P2,570,000.00.

People v. Reanzares (Highway Robbery; Judicial notice on value of Seiko watch)

FACTS:

1. Spouses Gregorio and Lilia Tactacan are owners of a sari-sari store.

2. At around 8:10 p.m. they closed their store and left for home on board their passenger type jeepney.

3. As Gregorio was maneuvering his jeep backwards from where it was parked, two unidentified men suddenly climbed on board.

4. They asked that they be dropped of in the town proper.

5. Lilia informed the two men that they were not passing through the town.

6. The two then said that they would get off at the nearest intersection.

7. About 500 meters they robbed the spouses and stabbed Lilia resulting to her death.

8. Two informations were filed against Armando Reanzares charging him with Anti-Piracy and Anti Highway Robbery, and violation of RA 6539
(Carnapping)

9. The RTC found him guilty of Highway Robbery with Homicide under PD 532 (Anti-Piracy and Anti-Highway Robbery). He was sentenced to
the supreme penalty of death. It further ordered him to pay the heirs of Lilia Tactacan P50,000.00 as indemnity for death, P172,000.00 for
funeral, burial and related expenses, and P1,000.00 for the cash taken from her bag.

The accused was also ordered to reimburse Gregorio Tactacan P2,500.00 for the Seiko wristwatch taken from him

ISSUE: Was the conviction by the RTC proper?

HELD: No.

Indeed the accused is guilty. But that the accused was guilty of Highway Robbery with Homicide under PD 532 was erroneous (Guilty
of special complex crime of Robbery with homicide). As held in a number of cases, conviction for highway robbery requires proof that
several accused were organized for the purpose of committing it indiscriminately. There is no proof in the instant case that the
accused and his cohorts organized themselves to commit highway robbery. Neither is there proof that they attempted to commit
similar robberies to show the indiscriminate perpetration thereof. On the other hand, what the prosecution established was only a
single act of robbery against the particular persons of the Tactacan spouses. Clearly, this single act of depredation is not what is
contemplated under PD 532 as its objective is to deter and punish lawless elements who commit acts of depredation upon persons
and properties of innocent and defenseless inhabitant who travel from one place to another thereby disturbing the peace and
tranquility of the nation and stunting the economic and social progress of the people.

The amount of P2,500.00 as reimbursement for the Seiko wristwatch taken from Gregorio Tactacan must be deleted in the absence of
receipts or any other competent evidence aside from the self-serving valuation made by the prosecution. An ordinary witness
cannot establish the value of jewelry and the trial court can only take judicial notice of the value of goods which is a matter
of public knowledge or is capable of unquestionable demonstration. The value of jewelry therefore does not fall under either
category of which the court can take judicial notice.

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People v Tundag (Incestuous rape- father-daughter; judicial notice on age of the victim)

Facts: For automatic review is the judgment of the RTC of Mandaue City, finding appellant Tomas Tundag guilty of two counts of incestuous
rape (daughter is Mary Ann) and sentencing him to death twice.

Issue: WON the penalty of death is proper.

Held: No. Guilty of two counts of simple rape.

Section 335 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by Section 11 of R.A. No. 7659, penalizes rape of a minor daughter by her father as
qualified rape and a heinous crime. In proving such felony, the prosecution must allege and prove the elements of rape: (1) sexual congress; (2)
with woman; (3) by force or without her consent and in order to warrant the imposition of capital punishment, the additional elements that: (4)
the victim is under 18 years of age at the time of the rape and (5) the offender is a parent of the victim.

In this case, it was sufficiently alleged and proven that the offender was the victims father. But the victims age was not properly and sufficiently
proved beyond reasonable doubt. She testified that she was thirteen years old at the time of the rapes. However, she admitted that she did not
know exactly when she was born because her mother did not tell her. She further said that her birth certificate was likewise with her mother. In
her own words, the victim testified - [30]

COURT TO WITNESS

Q: When were you born?

A: I do not know.

Q: You do not know your birthday?

A: My mama did not tell me exactly when I asked her.

COURT: Proceed.

FISCAL PEREZ: For our failure to secure the Birth Certificate Your Honor, may we just request for judicial notice that the victim here is below 18
years old.

ATTY. SURALTA: Admitted.

Judicial notice is the cognizance of certain facts which judges may properly take and act on without proof because they already know them.
Under the Rules of Court, judicial notice may either be mandatory or discretionary. Section 1 of Rule 129 of the Rules of Court provides when
court shall take mandatory judicial notice of facts.

With respect to other matters not falling within the mandatory or discretionary judicial notice, the court can take judicial notice of a fact pursuant
to the procedure in Section 3 of Rule 129 of the Rules of Court (Judicial notice, when hearing necessary).

In this case, judicial notice of the age of the victim is improper, despite the defense counsels admission, thereof acceding to the
prosecutions motion. As required by Section 3 of Rule 129, as to any other matters such as age, a hearing is required before courts
can take judicial notice of such fact. Generally, the age of the victim may be proven by the birth or baptismal certificate of the victim,
or in the absence thereof, upon showing that said documents were lost or destroyed, by other documentary or oral evidence
sufficient for the purpose.

In several recent cases, we have emphasized the need for independent proof (such as baptismal cert) of the age of the victim, aside from
testimonial evidence from the victim or her relatives. In People v. Javier we stressed that the prosecution must present independent proof of the
age of the victim, even though it is not contested by the defense. The minority of the victim must be proved with equal certainty and clearness
as the crime itself.

In People v. Cula,[36] we reiterated that it is the burden of the prosecution to prove with certainty the fact that the victim was below 18 when the
rape was committed in order to justify the imposition of the death penalty. Since the record of the case was bereft of any independent evidence
thereon, such as the victims duly certified Certificate of Live Birth, accurately showing private complainants age, appellant could not be
convicted of rape in its qualified form.

Considering the statutory requirement in Section 335 of the Revised Penal Code as amended by R.A. No. 7659 and R.A. No. 8353, we reiterate
here what the Court has held in Javier without any dissent, that the failure to sufficiently establish victims age by independent proof is a bar to
conviction for rape in its qualified form.

Camitan v Fidelity (Preliminary conference, counsel of petitioner admitted that TCT of respondent is a genuine owners copy)

Facts: The case arose from the Petition for the issuance of another duplicate copy of Certificate of Title by herein petitioners, together with
Alipio Camitan, before the RTC of Calamba, Laguna. (the first copy was lost)

RTC granted the petition, directed the Register of Deeds of Calamba, Laguna to issue a second owners duplicate copy of the TCT.

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Respondent Fidelity Investment Corporation (Fidelity) filed a Petition for annulment of judgment and cancellation of title before the CA.
According to Fidelity, it purchased the property covered by the subject certificate of title from the registered owners thereof pursuant to a Deed
of Absolute Sale.

CA gave due course to the petition for annulment of judgment, and a preliminary conference was set, directing Fidelity to bring the owners
duplicate copy of the TCT. At the preliminary conference, Fidelitys counsel presented what was claimed to be the owners duplicate copy of the
TCT. Counsel for private respondents examined the certificate of title and admitted that it is the genuine owners copy thereof.

In their Memorandum, private respondents retracted their counsels admission on the genuineness of the owners duplicate copy of the TCT
presented by Fidelity, citing honest mistake and negligence owing to his excitement and nervousness in appearing before the CA. They pointed
to some allegedly irreconcilable discrepancies between the copy annexed to the petition and the exhibit presented by Fidelity during the
preliminary conference.

Fidelity argued that private respondents are bound by the judicial admission made by their counsel during the preliminary conference.

CA ruled in favor of Fidelity. It declared that the RTC was without jurisdiction to issue a second owners duplicate copy of the title in light of the
existence of the genuine owners duplicate copy in the possession of petitioner, as admitted by private respondents through counsel. According
to the CA, a judicial admission is conclusive upon the party making it and cannot be contradicted unless previously shown to have been made
through palpable mistake or that no such admission was made. It said that honest mistake and negligence, as raised by private respondents in
retracting their counsels admission, are not sufficient grounds to invalidate the admission.

Petitioners claim that the honest mistake and negligence of their counsel amount to palpable mistake.

Issue: WON CA erred in not considering judicial admission of the counsel of petitioners was a palpable mistake.

Held: No.

The transcript of the preliminary conference indubitably shows that counsel for petitioners made a judicial admission and failed to refute that
admission during the said proceedings despite the opportunity to do so. A judicial admission is an admission, verbal or written, made by a party
in the course of the proceedings in the same case, which dispenses with the need for proof with respect to the matter or fact admitted. It may
be contradicted only by a showing that it was made through palpable mistake or that no such admission was made.

Petitioners, in their Memorandum before the CA, attempted to retract their counsels judicial admission on the authenticity of the owners
duplicate copy of TCT in the possession of Fidelity. Petitioners explicate that the wrong admission was an honest mistake and negligence
attributable to the counsels nervousness and excitement in appearing for the first time before the CA. However, as correctly pointed out by the
CA, such an admission may only be refuted upon a proper showing of palpable mistake or that no such admission was made. Thus, the claim
of honest mistake and negligence on the part of the counsel due to his excitement and nervousness in appearing before the CA did not
suffice.

As shown in the transcript of the proceedings, there was ample opportunity for petitioners counsel to examine the document, retract his
admission, and point out the alleged discrepancies. But he chose not to contest the document. Thus, it cannot be said that the admission of
the petitioners counsel was made through palpable mistake.

Aguenza vs. Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co. (admission without corporate ratification)

Facts: Petition for review on certiorari seeking the reversal of the Decision of the IAC finding petitioner Aguenza liable under a continuing surety
agreement to pay private respondent Metrobank a loan jointly obtained by the General Manager Arrieta and bookkeeper Perez of Intertrade a
corporation of which petitioner is President and in whose behalf petitioner had, in the past, obtained credit lines.

Private respondents Arrieta and Perez defaulted in the payment of several installments.

Metrobank files a complaint to collect from Arreta and Perez, the company Intertrade, and also impleading petitioner Aguenza on account of a
Continuing Suretyship agreement.

After hearing on the merits, the trial court rendered its decision absolving petitioner from liability and dismissing private respondent Metrobank's
complaint against him.

The CA reversed the RTC and ruled that Intertrade and Aguenza are solidarily liable, absolving Arrieta and Perez from paying the loan, thus: No
dispute exists as to the promissory note and the suretyship agreement. The controversy centers on whether the note was a corporate
undertaking and whether the suretyship agreement covered the obligation in the note.

The principal reason for respondent appellate court's reversal of the trial court's absolution of petitioner is its finding that the loan made by
private respondent Arrieta and Lilia Perez were admitted by Intertrade to be its own obligation.

As far as Intertrade is concerned, it seems clear from its answer that the loan evidenced by the note was a corporate liability.
Paragraph 1.3 of the answer admits ". . . defendant's obtention of the loan from the plaintiff . . ."; the affirmative defenses admit
default, and invoking the defense of usury, plead adjustment of excessive interest which Intertrade refused to make.

On the basis of this admission, it is no longer in point to discuss, as the appealed decision does, the question of the capacity in which
Arrieta and Perez signed the promissory note, Intertrade's admission of its corporate liability being admission also that the signatories

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signed the note in a representative capacity. The Bank itself gave corroboration with its insistence on Intertrade's liability under the
note. . .

Issue: WON the judicial admission by CA was valid.

Held: No.

After a careful scrutiny of the records, however, we find and we so rule that there is neither factual nor legal basis for such a finding by
respondent Appellate Court.

First, the general rule that "the allegations, statements, or admissions contained in a pleading are conclusive as against the pleader" is not an
absolute and inflexible rule 7 and is subject to exceptions. Rule 129, Section 4, of the Rules of Evidence, provides:

Sec. 4. Judicial admissions. An admission, verbal or written, made by a party in the course of the proceedings in the same case, does not
require proof. The admission may be contradicted only by showing that it was made through palpable mistake or that no such admission was
made. (Emphasis supplied).

In other words, an admission in a pleading on which a party goes to trial may be contradicted by showing that it was made by improvidence or
mistake or that no such admission was made, i.e., "not in the sense in which the admission was made to appear or the admission was taken
out of context."

In the case at bench, we find that the respondent Court of Appeals committed an error in appreciating the "Answer" filed by the lawyer of
Intertrade as an admission of corporate liability for the subject loan. A careful study of the responsive pleading filed by Atty. Francisco
Pangilinan, counsel for Intertrade, would reveal that there was neither express nor implied admission of corporate liability warranting the
application of the general rule. Thus, the alleged judicial admission may be contradicted and controverted because it was taken out of context
and no admission was made at all.

In any event, assuming arguendo that the responsive pleading did contain the aforesaid admission of corporate liability, the same may not still
be given effect at all. As correctly found by the trial court, the alleged admission made in the answer by the counsel for Intertrade was
"without any enabling act or attendant ratification of corporate act," as would authorize or even ratify such admission . In the absence
of such ratification or authority, such admission does not bind the corporation.

Second, the respondent appellate court likewise adjudged Intertrade liable because of the two letters emanating from the office of Mr. Arrieta
which the respondent court considered "as indicating the corporate liability of the corporation." These documents and admissions cannot have
the effect of a ratification of an unauthorized act. As we elucidated in the case of Vicente v. Geraldez, "ratification can never be made on the
part of the corporation by the same persons who wrongfully assume the power to make the contract, but the ratification must be by the officer
as governing body having authority to make such contract." In other words, the unauthorized act of respondent Arrieta can only be ratified by
the action of the Board of Directors and/or petitioner Aguenza jointly with private respondent Arrieta.

PHILAMGEN v. Sweet Lines, Inc.

Facts: The vessel belonging to or operated by SCI Line (Shipping Corp. of India) took on board 2 consignment of cargoes for shipment from LA
to Manila and Davao covered by bills of lading issued by SCI Line.

The cargoes were insured by Tagum Plastics and PHILAMGEN. For the purpose of transhipment from Manila to Davao, SCI Line made use of
M/V Sweet Love owned and operated by Sweet Lines.

The cargoes were comingled with similar cargoes. After the shipments were discharged, it was discovered that there were damages, losses
and shortages on the cargo covered by the bills of lading.

Philamgen and Tagum Plastics commenced a suit against Sweet Lines Inc.(SLI), Davao Arastre, SCI Line and FE Zuellig to recover the cost of
damaged shipment.

SLI: Cause of action of Philamgen prescribed based on shortened period for filing a claim as stated in the bill of lading.

Philamgen: SLI failed to adduce any evidence in support of the ground of prescription and that the bills of lading said to contain the shortened
periods for filing and for instituting a court action against the carrier were never offered in evidence.

Issue: WON the bills of lading may be considered as evidence though not formally offered?

Held: Yes. Although the bills of lading were not offered in evidence, the litigation obviously revolves on such bills of lading w/c are practically the
documents or contracts sued upon, hence they are inevitably involved and their provisions cannot be disregarded in the determination of the
relative rights of the parties thereto.

As petitioners are suing upon SLI's contractual obligation under the contract of carriage as contained in the bills of lading, such bills of lading
can be categorized as actionable documents w/c under the Rules must be properly pleaded either as causes of action or defenses, and the
genuineness and due execution of w/c are deemed admitted unless specifically denied under oath by the adverse party.

Philamgens failure to specifically deny the existence, much less the genuineness and due execution, of the instruments in question amounts to
an admission.

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Judicial admissions, verbal or written, made by the parties in the pleadings or in the course of the trial or other proceedings in the same case
are conclusive, no evidence being required to prove the same, and cannot be contradicted unless shown to have been made through palpable
mistake or that no such admission was made. Moreover, when the due execution and genuineness of an instrument are deemed admitted
because of the adverse party's failure to make a specific verified denial thereof, the instrument need not be presented formally in evidence for it
may be considered an admitted fact.

Even granting that petitioners' averment in their reply amounts to a denial, it has the procedural earmarks of what in the law on pleadings is
called a negative pregnant, that is, a denial pregnant with the admission of the substantial facts in the pleading responded to which are not
squarely denied. It is in effect an admission of the averment it is directed to. Thus, while petitioners objected to the validity of such agreement
for being contrary to public policy, the existence of the bills of lading and said stipulations were nevertheless impliedly admitted by them.

Alano vs. CA (Stipulations in pre-trial conference as judicial admission, prejudicial question-estafa- double sale)

Facts: Petitioner Arturo Alano this petition for review of the decision of the Court of Appeals the order of the Regional Trial Court of Manila,
denying petitioner's motion for the suspension of proceeding of Criminal Case for estafa (on account of double sale- first sale to Roberto Carlos,
second sale to Erlinda Dandoy, depriving Carlos of rightful ownership of a parcel of land in Taguig), as well as his motion for reconsideration.

Petitioner moved for the suspension of the criminal case on the ground that there was a prejudicial question pending resolution in another case
being tried in the Regional Trial Court, National Capital Region, Pasig.- concerns nullity of first sale because petitioner alleges that his signature
in the deed of absolute sale was a forgery..

Issue: WON the pendency of Civil Case, is a prejudicial question justifying the suspension of the proceedings in Criminal Case filed against the
petitioner.

Held: No.

SC affirmed decision of CA.

Petitioner, in the stipulation of facts, had already admitted during the pre-trial order dated of the criminal case the validity of his signature in the
first deed of sale between him and the private respondent, as well as his subsequent acknowledgment of his signature in twenty-three (23)
cash vouchers evidencing the payments made by the private respondent. Moreover, it was also noted by the Court of Appeals that petitioner
even wrote to the private respondent offering to refund whatever sum the latter had paid.

In this regard, the pre-trial provision on criminal procedure found in Rule 118 of the Rules of Court provides:

Sec. 2. Pre-trial conference; subject. . . . The pre-trial conference shall consider the following:

(a) Plea bargaining

(b) Stipulation of facts

From the foregoing, there is no question that a stipulation of facts by the parties in a criminal case is recognized as declarations
constituting judicial admissions, hence, binding upon the parties and by virtue of which the prosecution dispensed with the
introduction of additional evidence and the defense waived the right to contest or dispute the veracity of the statement contained in
the exhibit.

Accordingly, the stipulation of facts stated in the pre-trial order amounts to an admission by the petitioner resulting in the waiver of his
right to present evidence on his behalf. While it is true that the right to present evidence is guaranteed under the Constitution, this right may
be waived expressly or impliedly.

Since the suspension of the criminal case due to a prejudicial question is only a procedural matter, the same is subject to a waiver by virtue of
the prior acts of the accused. After all, the doctrine of waiver is made solely for the benefit and protection of the individual in his private capacity,
if it can be dispensed with and relinquished without infringing on any public right and without detriment to the community at large.

Accordingly, petitioner's admission in the stipulation of facts during the pre-trial of the criminal amounts to a waiver of his defense of forgery in
the civil case. Hence, we have no reason to nullify such waiver, it being not contrary to law, public order, public policy, morals or good customs,
or prejudicial to a third person with a right recognized by law. Furthermore, it must be emphasized that the pre-trial order was signed by the
petitioner himself. As such, the rule that no proof need be offered as to any facts admitted at a pre-trial hearing applies.

People v Solayao (Illegal possession of firearms, testimonial evidence, extra-judicial admission)

Facts:

1. On 9 June 1992, CAFGU members, headed by SPO3 Nino, were conducting an intelligence patrol to verify reports on the presence of
armed persons roaming around the barangays of Caibiran.

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2. In Baragay Onion, they met the 5-man group of accused Nilo Solayao, who was also wearing a camouflage uniform. His companions,
upon seeing the government agents, fled.

3. SPO3 Nio told Salayao not to run away and introduced himself as "PC," after which he seized the dried coconut leaves which the
latter was carrying and found wrapped in it a 49-inch long homemade firearm locally known as "latong."

4. When he asked Salayao who issued him a license to carry said firearm or whether he was connected with the military or any
intelligence group, the latter answered that he had no permission to possess the same.

5. Thereupon, SPO3 Nio confiscated the firearm and turned him over to the custody of the policemen of Caibiran who subsequently
investigated him and charged him with illegal possession of firearm.

6. Salayao did not contest the confiscation of the shotgun but averred that this was only given to him by one of his companions,
Hermogenes Cenining, when it was still wrapped in coconut leaves, which they were using the coconut leaves as a torch.

7. Salayaos claim was corroborated by one Pedro Balano. On 15 August 1994, the RTC of Naval Biliran (Branch 16) found Salayao
guilty of illegal possession of firearm under Section 1 of PD 1866 and imposed upon him the penalty of imprisonment ranging from
reclusion temporal maximum to reclusion perpetua.

8. The trial court, having found no mitigating but one aggravating circumstance of nighttime, sentenced accused-appellant to suffer the
prison term of reclusion perpetua with the accessory penalties provided by law. Salayao appealed to the SC.

Issue: WON admission in criminal cases sufficient to prove beyond reasonable doubt the commission of the crime charged.

Held: No.

This court, in the case of People v. Lualhati ruled that in crimes involving illegal possession of firearm, the prosecution has the burden of
proving the elements thereof, viz: (a) the existence of the subject firearm and (b) the fact that the accused who owned or possessed it does not
have the corresponding license or permit to possess the same.

In the case at bar, the prosecution was only able to prove by testimonial evidence that accused-appellant admitted before Police Officer Nio at
the time that he was accosted that he did not have any authority or license to carry the subject firearm when he was asked if he had one. In
other words, the prosecution relied on accused-appellant's admission to prove the second element.

By its very nature, an "admission is the mere acknowledgment of a fact or of circumstance from which guilt may be inferred, tending to
incriminate the speaker, but not sufficient of itself to establish his guilt." In other words, it is a "statement by defendant of fact or facts pertinent
to issues pending, in connection with proof of other facts or circumstances, to prove guilt, but which is, of itself, insufficient to authorize
conviction." From the above principles, this Court can infer that an admission in criminal cases is insufficient to prove beyond reasonable
doubt the commission of the crime charged.

Moreover, said admission is extra-judicial in nature. As such, it does not fall under Section 4 of Rule 129 of the Revised Rules of
Court which states:

An admission, verbal or written, made by a party in the course of the trial or other proceedings in the same case does not require
proof.

Not being a judicial admission, said statement by accused-appellant does not prove beyond reasonable doubt the second element of illegal
possession of firearm. It does not even establish a prima facie case. It merely bolsters the case for the prosecution but does not stand as proof
of the fact of absence or lack of a license.

This Court agrees with the argument of the Solicitor General that "while the prosecution was able to establish the fact that the subject firearm
was seized by the police from the possession of appellant, without the latter being able to present any license or permit to possess the same,
such fact alone is not conclusive proof that he was not lawfully authorized to carry such firearm. In other words, such fact does not relieve the
prosecution from its duty to establish the lack of a license or permit to carry the firearm by clear and convincing evidence, like a certification
from the government agency concerned." 24

Putting it differently, "when a negative is averred in a pleading, or a plaintiff's case depends upon the establishment of a negative, and the
means of proving the fact are equally within the control of each party, then the burden of proof is upon the party averring the negative."

In this case, a certification from the Firearms and Explosives Unit of the Philippine National Police that accused-appellant was not a licensee of
a firearm of any kind or caliber would have sufficed for the prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt the second element of the crime of
illegal possession of firearm.

People v. Manalo (Parrafin Test)

Facts:

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1. Accused Rolando Manalo for shooting one Warlito Bonillo and one Carlito Diomampo with an unlicensed pistol Colt Caliber .45.

2. The conviction was the result of the filing of two (2) amended informations. The accused pleaded not guilty. After trial on the merits the
accused was found guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of murder in relation to PD 1728.

3. Witness Carlos Lacbay narrated that at about 5PM of Nov. 29, 1989 he visited one of the victims, Diomampo, in the latter's house where they
conversed over some wine and camote regarding the latter's interest in buying a motorcycle. After 2 hours, witness Lacbay decided to leave,
while Diomampo and a brother-in-law offered to accompany him home. After this, Lacbay rode on his service motorcycle while Diomampo and
the other person (Bonilla) rode in tandem in their own motorcycle.

4. When the group arrived at Bgy. San Rafael in San Pablo City at about 7 pm, and parked their motorcycles, accused Manalo (an
acquaintance of both victims) arrived and invited the victims to his house for some drinks. The two acceded after insisting that Lacbay would go
as he did, with them. As they were walking to accused house, Bonilla and Diamampao walked ahead, with accused following close by and
Lacbay behind the latter.

5. After the victims entered the house of accused, the latter suddenly drew a .45 Caliber gun and shot Diomampo once in the head and then
Bonilla on the temple about 3 meters from behind. Both died immediately, nevertheless, accused fired another shot at Diomampo. Lacbay who
saw everything was so shocked. The accused told him that he shot both because Diomampo had impregnated his daughter, Dina Manalo. After
this, accused asked Lacbay to dig, to which the latter refused. Finally, accused asked him not to leave the place as he would look for someone
to do the digging. Lacbay took this chance to flee the scene. Subsequently, both the bodies of Bonilla and Diomampo were found buried in a
shallow pit under the 'banggerahan' of accused' house.

6. The defense maintains the innocence of Manalo, arguing that he is merely a witness to the crime perpetrated by two unknown assailants.
According to the defense' version of the story, it was these two unknown persons who killed both victims. Accordingly, the assailants were
already waiting in the area for Bonilla and Diomampo, then thereafter shot them.

Issue: WON a paraffin test yielding a negative result will prove the innocence of the accused.

Held: No.

The court had examined the evidence and it found that it supported the judgement of the lower court. The accused banks on the alleged
absence of physical evidence showing that accused fired a gun. The court held that this circumstance did not prove his innocence since even if
a paraffin test would yield a negative result, it is still possible for one to have fired a gun and washed his hands thereafter. The court also
recognized the great possibility that there will be no paraffin traces left in the hands when a bullet was fired from a .45 Caliber pistol, as held in
the case of People vs. Rebullar (188 SCRA 838).

Finally, the lone witness to the crime, Lacbay has positively identified Manalo as the sole perpetrator of the killing. Lacbay can never be said to
be a prejudiced witness since he had no other motive nor misunderstanding to maliciously testify against Manalo. The little delay in reporting
the killings to the authorities was due to the shock, confusion and fear of Lacbay and that he had to wait ans consult with a relative who was a
member of the Philippine marines.

More importantly, the accused Manalo has executed an extrajudicial statement admitting the killings but which he later on withdrew during the
trial. Accused adopted two irreconciliable stands that is actually the heart of the case, rendering him unworthy of credit and belief. Accused also
wrote several letters, one to Mr. Marcela Bonilla offering money as settlement for the death of the two victims and then to Fiscal Escondo
requesting him no to charge murder but only homicide as he had no intention to kill the victims. In one of these letters, he even asked
forgiveness for the crime he had committed.

People vs. Malimit (Robbery with homicide using bolo, wallet of the victim as object evidence)

Doctrine: The right against self-incrimination is simply a prohibition against legal process to extract from the accuseds own lips, against his ill,
admission of his guilt. It does NOT apply when the evidence sought is NOT an incriminating statement but an object evidence; Miranda rights
covers only inadmissibility of extrajudicial confession or admission made during custodial investigation; other evidence (like IDs, wallet, keys,
etc) is not affected even if obtained or taken in the course of custodial investigation.

Facts: Appellant Jose Encarnacion Malimit, charged with and convicted of the special complex crime of robbery with homicide, was meted by
the trial court 3 the penalty of reclusion perpetua. He was also ordered to indemnify the heirs of Onofre Malaki (owner of the store whom he
killed with bolo) the sum of Fifty Thousand Pesos (P50,000.00) without subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency, and to pay the cost.

Accused-appellant asserts that the trial court erred in admitting as evidence the wallet and its contents although the circumstances which lead
to its production was obtained in violation of constitutional rights of the accused.

Issue: WON the wallet may be admitted as object evidence.

Held: Yes. See doctrine.

In his second assignment of error, appellant asseverates that the admission as evidence of Malaki's wallet together with its contents, viz., (1)
Malaki's residence certificate; (2) his identification card; and (3) bunch of keys, violates his right against self-incrimination. Likewise, appellant
sought for their exclusion because during the custodial investigation, wherein he pointed to the investigating policemen the place where he hid
Malaki's wallet, he was not informed of his constitutional rights.

8
We are not persuaded. The right against self-incrimination guaranteed under our fundamental law finds no application in this case. This right, as
put by Mr. Justice Holmes in Holt vs. United States, ". . . is a prohibition of the use of physical or moral compulsion, to extort communications
from him . . ." It is simply a prohibition against legal process to extract from the [accused]'s own lips, against his will, admission of his guilt. It
does not apply to the instant case where the evidence sought to be excluded is not an incriminating statement but an object evidence.

Neither are we prepared to order the exclusion of the questioned pieces of evidence pursuant to the provision of the Constitution under Article
III, Section 12, viz:

(1) Any person under investigation for the commission of an offense shall have the right to be informed of his right to remain silent and to
have competent and independent counsel preferably of his own choice. If the person cannot afford the services of counsel, he must be provided
with one. These rights cannot be waived except in writing and in the presence of counsel.

xxx xxx xxx

(3) Any confession or admission obtained in violation of this or Sec. 17 hereof, shall be inadmissible in evidence against him. (Emphasis
ours.)

xxx xxx xxx

These are the so-called "Miranda rights" so oftenly disregarded by our men in uniform. However, infractions thereof render inadmissible only the
extrajudicial confession or admission made during custodial investigation. The admissibility of other evidence, provided they are relevant to the
issue and is not otherwise excluded by law or rules, is not affected even if obtained or taken in the course of custodial investigation.
Concededly, appellant was not informed of his right to remain silent and to have his own counsel by the investigating policemen during the
custodial investigation. Neither did he execute a written waiver of these rights in accordance with the constitutional prescriptions. Nevertheless,
these constitutional short-cuts do not affect the admissibility of Malaki's wallet, identification card, residence certificate and keys for the purpose
of establishing other facts relevant to the crime. Thus, the wallet is admissible to establish the fact that it was the very wallet taken from Malaki
on the night of the robbery. The identification card, residence certificate and keys found inside the wallet, on the other hand, are admissible to
prove that the wallet really belongs to Malaki. Furthermore, even assuming arguendo that these pieces of evidence are inadmissible, the same
will not detract from appellant's culpability considering the existence of other evidence and circumstances establishing appellant's identity and
guilt as perpetrator of the crime charged.

People v Jumamoy (Firearm used in killing was not presented in court during trial)

Facts: Two (2) separate informations for "Murder" and "Qualified Illegal Possession of Firearm and Ammunitions" were filed by the Office of the
Provincial Fiscal of Bohol with the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Tagbilaran City against accused Luciano Jumamoy y Aora, alias Junior. RTC
convicted the accused of the crimes charged.

Accused alleges that RTC erred in convicting him because the firearm alleged to have been used by the accused in killing the victim was not
presented in court during the trial. Its caliber and make was never established by sufficient evidence, so that there is no basis to convict the
accused for illegal possession of firearm.

Issue: WON presentation of the firearm used by the accused is indispensable for the prosecution to establish proof beyond reasonable doubt.

Held: No.

There is no law or rule of evidence which requires the prosecution to do so; there is also no law which prescribes that a ballistics examination
be conducted to determine the source and trajectory of the bullets. For conviction to lie it is enough that the prosecution establishes by
proof beyond reasonable doubt that a crime was committed and that the accused is the author thereof. The production of the weapon
used in the commission of the crime is not a condition sine qua non for the discharge of such a burden for the weapon may not have
been recovered at all from the assailant. If the rule were to be as proposed by the accused, many criminals would go scot-free and much
injustice would be caused to the victims of crimes, their families and society. In the instant case, it was established with moral certainty that the
accused attacked, assaulted and shot the victim Rolando Miel with an unlicensed firearm, thereby inflicting upon the latter multiple gunshot
wounds which caused his death. Such proof was all that was needed for the conviction of the accused.

Against the overwhelming evidence consisting of his positive identification (by witnesses) as the author of Rolando Miel's death, accused has
nothing to offer but alibi. It is a fundamental judicial dictum that the defense of alibi (alibi is even obviously fabricated as he changed his
statements during rebuttel) cannot prevail over the positive identification of the accused.

People v Flores

Facts: This is an appeal from the decision of the Regional Trial Court of Malolos, Bulacan, convicting accused-appellant Rosalino Flores alias
"Jianggo" of the crime of murder for killing Antontio Garcia with a .38 caliber hand gun.

Accused-appellant contends that RTC erred in convicting him because he was tested negative in the paraffin test and the gun used in the
commission of the crime and slug recovered from the victim were not presented as evidence.

Issue: WON presentation for the hand gun used and slug recovered from the victims body were necessary to establish the guilt of the accused.

Held: No.

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The fact that accused-appellant tested negative in the paraffin test; that the prosecution did not present the gun used in the commission of the
crime and the slug recovered from the body of the victim is of no moment. It has been held that the negative findings of the paraffin test do not
conclusively show that a person did not discharge a firearm at the time the crime was committed for the absence of nitrates is possible if a
person discharged a firearm with gloves on, or if he thoroughly washed his hands thereafter.23 Since accused-appellant submitted himself for
paraffin test 3 days after the shooting, it is likely that he has already washed his hands thoroughly and removed all traces of nitrates in his hand.
It has also been held that the non-presentation by the prosecution of the gun used and the slug recovered from the body of the victim
is not fatal to the case24 when there is positive identification of the assailant (by the witnesses-daughter of the victim,others) as in the
instant case.

On circumstantial evidence:

Circumstantial evidence is sufficient to convict provided the following requisites are present, namely: (1) there is more than one circumstance;
(2) the facts from which the inferences are derived from are proven; and (3) the combination of all the circumstances is such as to produce a
conviction beyond reasonable doubt. The circumstantial evidence must constitute an unbroken chain of events so as to lead to a fair and
reasonable conclusion that points to the guilt of the accused.

Although Myla and Roberto may not have seen the accused-appellant in the actual act of shooting the victim, the unrebutted testimony of the
witnesses for the prosecution point to him as the only person who may have been responsible for the commission of the crime to the exclusion
of any other person. Witness for the prosecution Myla Garcia, daughter of the victim, testified in a plain and straightforward manner that she
saw accused-appellant standing 3 arms' length away from the place where her father Antonio Garcia and his companions were drinking; that
she approached him at a distance of about one arm length; that she saw him pointing a gun at her father; that as she rushed towards her father
she heard a shot that hit her father who leaned and then fell on her side; that she embraced him and walked him towards their house; that
before they entered the house, she saw accused-appellant still there but when she shouted, "si Jianggo, si Jianggo," he ran away.

The other witness for the prosecution, Roberto Santiago, testified that as he was about to enter the gate of the victim's residence to attend the
latter's birthday celebration, he heard a shot and someone shouted, "si Jianggo, si Jianggo". He passed through the front door and went out the
back door to where he heard the shot. Thereafter, he saw accused-appellant holding a gun and running away from the place of the incident.

At the time Myla and Roberto saw accused-appellant they were at a distance reasonable to make an accurate identification. Myla was only an
arm's length away, while Roberto was 10 to 11 meters away from accused-appellant. Further, Myla and Roberto are familiar with the accused-
appellant as they live in the same place and accused-appellant is Myla's uncle.

All these circumstances put together constitute an unbroken chain, consistent with each other and the theory that accused-appellant authored
the crime charged. The culpability of the accused is further strengthened by that fact that he fled from the place after the commission of the
crime. 16 This Court has already ruled time and again that flight of an accused from the scene of the crime removes any remaining shreds of
doubts on his guilt.

BPI vs. Reyes (100K vs 200K deposit in new savings account)

Physical evidence is a mute but eloquent manifestation of truth, and it ranks high in our hierarchy of trustworthy evidence-

where the physical evidence on record runs counter to the testimonial evidence of the prosecution witnesses, the Court has consistently ruled
that the physical evidence should prevail; To uphold the declaration of the Court of Appeals that it is unlikely for the bank depositor and her
daughter to concoct a false story against a banking institution is to give weight to conjectures and surmises, which the Court cannot
countenance.Physical evidence is a mute but eloquent manifestation of truth, and it ranks high in our hierarchy of trustworthy evidence. We
have, on many occasions, relied principally upon physical evidence in ascertaining the truth. Where the physical evidence on record runs
counter to the testimonial evidence of the prosecution witnesses, we consistently rule that the physical evidence should prevail.

Great evidentiary weight is given to the tellers tape, considering that it is inserted into the banks computer terminal, which records the
tellers daily transactions in the ordinary course of business, and there is no showing that the same had been purposely manipulated
to prove the banks claim.-

The tellers tape definitely establishes the fact of respondent Jesusas original intention to withdraw the amount of P200,000.00, and not
P100,000.00 as she claims, from her savings account, to be transferred as her initial deposit to her new Express Teller account, the
insufficiency of her balance in her savings account, and finally the fund transfer of the amount of P100,000.00 from her savings account to her
new Express Teller account. We give great evidentiary weight to the tellers tape, considering that it is inserted into the banks computer
terminal, which records the tellers daily transactions in the ordinary course of business, and there is no showing that the same had been
purposely manipulated to prove petitioners claim.

Facts: Respondent Jesusa Reyes together with her daughter, went to BPI Zapote Branch to open an ATM account.

Respondent informed one of petitioners employees, Mr. Capati, that they wanted to open an ATM account for the amount of P200,000.00,
P100,000.00 of which shall be withdrawn from her exiting savings account with BPI bank which is account no. 0233-2433-88 and the other
P100,000.00 will be given by her in cash.

Capati allegedly made a mistake and prepared a withdrawal slip for P200,00.00 to be withdrawn from her existing savings account with said
bank and the respondent believing in good faith that Capati prepared the papers with the correct amount signed the same unaware of the
mistakes in figures.

10
Minutes later after the slips were presented to the teller, Capati returned to where the respondent was seating and informed the latter that the
withdrawable balance could not accommodate P200,000.00.

Respondent explained that she is withdrawing the amount of P100,000.00 only and then changed and correct the figure two (2) into one (1)
with her signature super-imposed thereto signifying the change, afterwhich the amount of P100,000.00 in cash in two bundles containing 100
pieces of P500.00 peso bill were given to Capati with her daughter Joan witnessing the same. Thereafter Capati prepared a deposit slip for
P200,000.00 in the name of resondent Jesusa Reyes with the new account no. 0235-0767-48 and brought the same to the teller's booth.

After a while, he returned and handed to the respondent her duplicate copy of her deposit to account no. 0235-0767-48 reflecting the amount of
P200,000.00 with receipt stamp showing December 7, as the date.

Later on, respondent would become aware that her ATM account only contained the amount of P100,000.00 with interest. Hence, she filed an
action before the RTC.

Petitioner claimed that there was actually no cash involved with the transactions which happened on December 7, 1990 as contained in the
banks teller tape.

On August 12, 1994, the RTC issued a Decision upholding the versions of respondents.

Aggrieved, petitioner appealed to the CA which affirmed the RTC decision with modification

ISSUE: Whether the CA erred in sustaining the RTC's finding that respondent Jesusa made an initial deposit of P200,000.00 in her newly
opened Express Teller account on December 7, 1990.

HELD: Yes.

It is a basic rule in evidence that each party to a case must prove his own affirmative allegations by the degree of evidence required by law. In
civil cases, the party having the burden of proof must establish his case by preponderance of evidence, or that evidence which is of greater
weight or is more convincing than that which is in opposition to it. It does not mean absolute truth; rather, it means that the testimony of one
side is more believable than that of the other side, and that the probability of truth is on one side than on the other.

Hence, to arrive at the truth, we thoroughly reviewed the transcripts of the witnesses' testimonies and examined the pieces of evidence on
record.

After a careful and close examination of the records and evidence presented by the parties, we find that respondents failed to successfully
prove by preponderance of evidence that respondent Jesusa made an initial deposit of P200,000.00 in her Express Teller account.

Respondent Jesusa and her daughter Joan testified that at the outset, respondent Jesusa told Capati that she was opening an Express Teller
account for P200,000.00; that she was going to withdraw and transfer P100,000.00 from her savings account to her new account, and that she
had an additional P100,000.00 cash. However, these assertions are not borne out by the other evidence presented. Notably, it is not refuted
that Capati prepared a withdrawal slip for P200,000.00. This is contrary to the claim of respondent Jesusa that she instructed Capati to make a
fund transfer of only P100,000.00 from her savings account to the Express Teller account she was opening. Yet, respondent Jesusa signed the
withdrawal slip. We find it strange that she would sign the withdrawal slip if her intention in the first place was to withdraw only P100,000.00
from her savings account and deposit P100,000.00 in cash with her.

Moreover, respondent Jesusa's claim that she signed the withdrawal slip without looking at the amount indicated therein fails to convince us, for
respondent Jesusa, as a businesswoman in the regular course of business and taking ordinary care of her concerns, would make sure that she
would check the amount written on the withdrawal slip before affixing her signature. Significantly, we note that the space provided for her
signature is very near the space where the amount of P200,000.00 in words and figures are written; thus, she could not have failed to notice
that the amount of P200,000.00 was written instead of P100,000.00.

The fact that respondent Jesusa initially intended to transfer the amount of P200,000.00 from her savings account to her new Express Teller
account was further established by the teller's tape presented as petitioner's evidence and by the testimony of Emerenciana Torneros, the teller
who had attended to respondent Jesusa's transactions.

Tellers tape as evidence- The first column shows the exact time of the transactions; the second column shows the date of the transactions; the
third column shows the bank transaction code; the fourth column shows the teller's code; and the fifth column shows the client's account
number. The teller's tape reflected various transactions involving different accounts on December 7, 1990 which included respondent Jesusa's
Savings Account No. 233243388 and her new Express Teller Account No. 235076748. It shows that respondent Jesusa's initial intention to
withdraw P200,000.00, not P100,000.00, from her Savings Account No. 233324299 was begun at 3 o'clock, 12 minutes and 45 seconds as
shown in Exhibit "1-c."

In explaining the entries in the teller's tape, Torneros testified that when she was processing respondent Jesusa's withdrawal in the amount of
P200,000.00, her computer rejected the transaction because there was a discrepancy;21 thus, the word "BIG AMOUNT" appeared on the tape.
"Big amount" means that the amount was so big for her to approve,22 so she keyed in the amount again and overrode the transaction to be
able to process the withdrawal using an officer's override with the latter's approval.23 The letter "J" appears after Figure 288 in the fourth
column to show that she overrode the transaction. She then keyed again the amount of P200,000.00 at 3 o'clock 13 minutes and 9 seconds;
however, her computer rejected the transaction, because the balance she keyed in based on respondent Jesusa's passbook was wrong;24 thus
appeared the phrase "balance error" on the tape, and the computer produced the balance of P229,257.64, and so she keyed in the withdrawal
of P200,000.00.25 Since it was a big amount, she again had to override it, so she could process the amount. However, the withdrawal was
again rejected for the reason "TOD, overdraft,"26 which meant that the amount to be withdrawn was more than the balance, considering that
there was a debited amount of P30,935.16 reflected in respondent Jesusa's passbook, reducing the available balance to only P198,322.48.27

11
Torneros then called Capati to her cage and told him of the insufficiency of respondent Jesusa's balance. Capati then motioned respondent
Jesusa to the teller's cage; and when she was already in front of the teller's cage, Torneros told her that she could not withdraw P200,000.00
because of overdraft; thus, respondent Jesusa decided to just withdraw P100,000.00.29

This explains the alteration in the withdrawal slip with the superimposition of the figure "1" on the figure "2" and the change of the word "two" to
"one" to show that the withdrawn amount from respondent Jesusa's savings account was only P100,000.00, and that respondent Jesusa
herself signed the alterations.

The teller's tape showed that the withdrawal of the amount of P100,000.00 by fund transfer was resumed at 3 o'clock 17 minutes and 27
seconds; but since it was a big amount, there was a need to override it again, and the withdrawal/fund transfer was completed. At 3 o'clock 18
minutes and 27 seconds, the amount of P100,000.00 was deposited to respondent Jesusa's new Express Teller Account No. 235076748.

The teller's tape definitely establishes the fact of respondent Jesusa's original intention to withdraw the amount of P200,000.00, and not
P100,000.00 as she claims, from her savings account, to be transferred as her initial deposit to her new Express Teller account, the
insufficiency of her balance in her savings account, and finally the fund transfer of the amount of P100,000.00 from her savings account to her
new Express Teller account. We give great evidentiary weight to the teller's tape, considering that it is inserted into the bank's computer
terminal, which records the teller's daily transactions in the ordinary course of business, and there is no showing that the same had been
purposely manipulated to prove petitioner's claim.

Respondent Jesusa's bare claim, although corroborated by her daughter, that the former deposited P100,000.00 cash in addition to the fund
transfer of P100,000.00, is not established by physical evidence. While the duplicate copy of the deposit slip was in the amount of P200,000.00
and bore the stamp mark of teller Torneros, such duplicate copy failed to show that there was a cash deposit of P100,000.00. An examination of
the deposit slip shows that it did not contain any entry in the breakdown portion for the specific denominations of the cash deposit. This
demolishes the testimonies of respondent Jesusa and her daughter Joan.

Furthermore, teller Torneros's explanation of why the duplicate copy of the deposit slip in the amount of P200,000.00 bore the teller's stamp
mark is convincing and consistent with logic and the ordinary course of business. She testified that Capati went to her cage bringing with him a
withdrawal slip for P200,000.00 signed by respondent Jesusa, two copies of the deposit slip for P200,000.00 in respondent Jesusa's name for
her new Express Teller account, and the latter's savings passbook reflecting a balance of P249,657.6431 as of November 19, 1990. Thus, at
first glance, these appeared to Torneros to be sufficient for the withdrawal of P200,000.00 by fund transfer. Capati then got her teller's stamp
mark, stamped it on the duplicate copy of the deposit slip, and gave the duplicate to respondent Jesusa, while the original copy of the deposit
slip was left in her cage.34 However, as Torneros started processing the transaction, it turned out that respondent Jesusa's balance was
insufficient to accommodate the P200,000.00 fund transfer as narrated earlier.

Since respondent Jesusa had signed the alteration in the withdrawal slip and had already left the teller's counter thereafter and Capati was still
inside the teller's cage, Torneros asked Capati about the original deposit slip and the latter told her, "Ok naman iyan," and Capati superimposed
the figures "1" on "2" on the deposit slip36 to reflect the initial deposit of P100,000.00 for respondent Jesusa's new Express Teller account and
signed the alteration. Torneros then machine-validated the deposit slip. Thus, the duplicate copy of the deposit slip, which bore Torneross
stamp mark and which was given to respondent Jesusa prior to the processing of her transaction, was not machine-validated unlike the original
copy of the deposit slip.

While the fact that the alteration in the original deposit slip was signed by Capati and not by respondent Jesusa herself was a violation of the
bank's policy requiring the depositor to sign the correction, nevertheless, we find that respondents failed to satisfactorily establish by
preponderance of evidence that indeed there was an additional cash of P100,000.00 deposited to the new Express Teller account.

Country Bankers Insurance Corp v Lagman

Facts: Nelson Santos (Santos) applied for a license with the National Food Authority (NFA) to engage in the business of storing palay in his
warehouse at Barangay Malacampa, Camiling, Tarlac. Under General Bonded Warehouse Act, as amended, the approval for said license was
conditioned upon posting of a cash bond,a bond secured by real estate, or a bond signed by a duly authorized bonding company. Accordingly,
Country Bankers Insurance Corporation (Country Bankers) issued Warehouse Bonds through its agent, herein respondent Antonio Lagman
(Lagman). Santos was the bond principal, Lagman was the surety and the Republic of the Philippines, through the NFA was the obligee

Inconsideration of these issuances, corresponding Indemnity Agreements were executed by Santos, as bond principal, together with Lagman
and others as co-signors. The latter bound themselves jointly and severally liable to Country Bankers for any damages, prejudice,losses, costs,
payments, advances and expenses of whatever kind and nature, including attorneys fees and legal costs, which it may sustain as a
consequence of the said bond. Santos then secured a loan using his warehouse receipts as collateral. When the loan matured, Santos
defaulted in his payment. The sacks of palay covered by the warehouse receipts were no longer found in the bonded warehouse. By virtue of
the surety bonds, Country Bankers was compelled to pay. After payment, Country Bankers filed a complaint for a sum of money before the
Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Manila.

In his Answer, Lagman alleged that 1990 Warehouse Bonds supersedes, cancels, and renders no force and effect the 1989 Bonds, and thus he
can no longer be held liable because he was not one of the signatories in corresponding Indemnity agreements in such 1990 Bonds.

The trial court rendered judgment declaring Lagman jointly and severally liable to pay Country Bankers. Lagman then filed an appeal to the
Court of Appeals presenting a mere photocopy of the 1990 which then rendered the assailed decision reversing and setting aside the Decision
of the RTC and ordering the dismissal of the complaint filed against Lagman saying that 1990 Bond superseded the 1989 Bonds after which,
Country Bankers expectedly assailed the decision of CA to Supreme Court for review on certiorari.

12
Issue: WON a photocopy of the bond is admissible as evidence.

Held: No.

Lagmans insistence on novation depends on the validity, nay, existence of the allegedly novating 1990 Bond. Country Bankers understandably
impugns both. We see the point. Lagman presented a mere photocopy of the 1990 Bond. We rule as inadmissible such copy.

Under the best evidence rule, the original document must be produced whenever its contents are the subject of inquiry. The rule is
encapsulated in Section 3, Rule 130 of the Rules of Court, as follow:

Sec. 3. Original document must be produced; exceptions. When the subject of inquiry is the contents of a documents, no evidence shall be
admissible other than the original document itself, except in the following cases:

(a) When the original has been lost or destroyed, or cannot be produced in court, without bad faith on the part of the offeror;

(b) When the original is in the custody or under the control of the party against whom the evidence is offered, and the latter fails to produce
it after reasonable notice;

(c) When the original consists of numerous accounts or other documents which cannot be examined in court without great loss of time and
the fact sought to be established from them is only the general result of the whole; and

(d) When the original is a public record in the custody of a public officer or is recorded in a public office.[26]

A photocopy, being a mere secondary evidence, is not admissible unless it is shown that the original is unavailable.[27] Section 5, Rule 130 of
the Rules of Court states:

SEC.5 When original document is unavailable. When the original document has been lost or destroyed, or cannot be produced in court, the
offeror, upon proof of its execution or existence and the cause of its unavailability without bad faith on his part, may prove its contents by a
copy, or by a recital of its contents in some authentic document, or by the testimony of witnesses in the order stated.

Before a party is allowed to adduce secondary evidence to prove the contents of the original, the offeror must prove the following: (1)
the existence or due execution of the original; (2) the loss and destruction of the original or the reason for its non-production in
court; and (3) on the part of the offeror, the absence of bad faith to which the unavailability of the original can be attributed. The
correct order of proof is as follows: existence, execution, loss, and contents.

In the case at bar, Lagman mentioned during the direct examination that there are actually four (4) duplicate originals of the 1990 Bond: the first
is kept by the NFA, the second is with the Loan Officer of the NFA in Tarlac, the third is with Country Bankers and the fourth was in his
possession. A party must first present to the court proof of loss or other satisfactory explanation for the non-production of the original
instrument. When more than one original copy exists, it must appear that all of them have been lost, destroyed, or cannot be produced in court
before secondary evidence can be given of any one. A photocopy may not be used without accounting for the other originals.

Despite knowledge of the existence and whereabouts of these duplicate originals, Lagman merely presented a photocopy. He admitted that he
kept a copy of the 1990 Bond but he could no longer produce it because he had already severed his ties with Country Bankers. However, he
did not explain why severance of ties is by itself reason enough for the non-availability of his copy of the bond considering that, as it appears
from the 1989 Bonds, Lagman himself is a bondsman. Neither did Lagman explain why he failed to secure the original from any of the three
other custodians he mentioned in his testimony. While he apparently was able to find the original with the NFA Loan Officer, he was merely
contented with producing its photocopy. Clearly, Lagman failed to exert diligent efforts to produce the original.

Fueling further suspicion regarding the existence of the 1990 Bond is the absence of an Indemnity Agreement. While Lagman argued that a
1990 Bond novates the 1989 Bonds, he raises the defense of non-existence of an indemnity agreement which would conveniently exempt him
from liability. The trial court deemed this defense as indicia of bad faith

NAPOCOR vs. Codilla (Photocopies not considered as electronic document)

Facts: A ship being operated and owned by the herein private respondent Bangpai shipping company under its hip agent Wallem shipping Inc.,
accidentally bumped the power barge of the herein petitioner, NAPOCOR. The latter filed a complaint for damages before the sala of the herein
public respondent judge. During the presentation of evidence, the petitioner presented as pieces of evidence Xerox copies, to which such was
admitted by the court. However, a motion to strike out the evidence was filed before the court to which the court ordered that such pieces of
evidence be stricken out of the records but has to be attached to the documents for proper disposition by the appellate in case of appeal before
the latter. The petitioner aver that such documents be admitted for the basic reason that such is within the purview of the electronic evidence.

Issue: Whether or not the pieces of evidence submitted by the petitioner be regarded within the purview of the electronic evidence for the court
be compelled to admit?

Held: No, the Supreme Court mentioned the following:

The Trial Court (as affirmed by SC) finds merit in the objections raised and the motion to strike out filed respectively by the defendants. The
record shows that the plaintiff has been given every opportunity to present the originals of the Xerox or photocopies of the documents it offered.
It never produced the originals. The plaintiff attempted to justify the admission of the photocopies by contending that "the photocopies offered

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are equivalent to the original of the document" on the basis of the Electronic Evidence (Comment to Defendant Wallem Philippines Objections
and Motion to Strike). But as rightly pointed out in defendant Wallems Reply to the Comment of Plaintiff, the Xerox copies do not constitute the
electronic evidence defined in Section 1 of Rule 2 of the Rules on Electronic Evidence as follows:

"(h) "Electronic document" refers to information or the representation of information, data, figures, symbols or other models of written
expression, described or however represented, by which a right is established or an obligation extinguished, or by which a fact may be proved
and affirmed, which is received, recorded, transmitted, stored, processed, retrieved or produced electronically. It includes digitally signed
documents and any printout, readable by sight or other means which accurately reflects the electronic data message or electronic document.
For the purpose of these Rules, the term "electronic document" may be used interchangeably with "electronic data message".

On the other hand, an "electronic document" refers to information or the representation of information, data, figures, symbols or other models of
written expression, described or however represented, by which a right is established or an obligation extinguished, or by which a fact may be
proved and affirmed, which is received, recorded, transmitted, stored, processed, retrieved or produced electronically. It includes digitally signed
documents and any printout, readable by sight or other means which accurately reflects the electronic data message or electronic document.

The rules use the word "information" to define an electronic document received, recorded, transmitted, stored, processed, retrieved or produced
electronically. This would suggest that an electronic document is relevant only in terms of the information contained therein, similar to any other
document which is presented in evidence as proof of its contents. However, what differentiates an electronic document from a paper-based
document is the manner by which the information is processed; clearly, the information contained in an electronic document is received,
recorded, transmitted, stored, processed, retrieved or produced electronically.

A perusal of the information contained in the photocopies submitted by petitioner will reveal that not all of the contents therein, such as the
signatures of the persons who purportedly signed the documents, may be recorded or produced electronically. By no stretch of the imagination
can a persons signature affixed manually be considered as information electronically received, recorded, transmitted, stored, processed,
retrieved or produced. Hence, the argument of petitioner that since these paper printouts were produced through an electronic process, then
these photocopies are electronic documents as defined in the Rules on Electronic Evidence is obviously an erroneous, if not preposterous,
interpretation of the law. Having thus declared that the offered photocopies are not tantamount to electronic documents, it is consequential that
the same may not be considered as the functional equivalent of their original as decreed in the law.

Section 2, Rule 130 of the Rules of Court:

"SECTION 2. Original writing must be produced; exceptions. There can be no evidence of a writing the contents of which is the subject of
inquiry, other than the original writing itself, except in the following cases:

(a) When the original has been lost, destroyed, or cannot be produced in court;

(b) When the original is in the possession of the party against whom the evidence is offered, and the latter fails to produce it after reasonable
notice;

(c) When the original is a record or other document in the custody of a public officer;

(d) When the original has been recorded in an existing record a certified copy of which is made evidence by law;

(e) When the original consists of numerous accounts or other documents which cannot be examined in court without great loss of time and the
fact sought to be established from them is only the general result of the whole."

When the original document has been lost or destroyed, or cannot be produced in court, the offeror, upon proof of its execution or existence
and the cause of its unavailability without bad faith on his part, may prove its contents by a copy, or by a recital of its contents in some authentic
document, or by the testimony of witnesses in the order stated. The offeror of secondary evidence is burdened to prove the predicates thereof:
(a) the loss or destruction of the original without bad faith on the part of the proponent/offeror which can be shown by circumstantial evidence of
routine practices of destruction of documents; (b) the proponent must prove by a fair preponderance of evidence as to raise a reasonable
inference of the loss or destruction of the original copy; and (c) it must be shown that a diligent and bona fide but unsuccessful search has been
made for the document in the proper place or places. However, in the case at bar, though petitioner insisted in offering the photocopies as
documentary evidence, it failed to establish that such offer was made in accordance with the exceptions as enumerated under the abovequoted
rule. Accordingly, we find no error in the Order of the court a quo denying admissibility of the photocopies offered by petitioner as documentary
evidence.

Indeed the documents presented by the petitioner as evidence before the court were not within the purview electronic document or electronic
data message. It will be highly unacceptable to regard an information manually written down to be regarded as electronic message. The
petitioner cannot aver now to submit the original copies of the documents since they were given enough time to submit such but they refused to
do so and insist that the photocopies be admitted instead.

The high court denied such petition.

Borje vs Sandiganbayan (Falsification of public document- original document must be presented)

FACTS:

Borje was accused of the crime of falsification of public document. Complainant Ducusin alleged that Borje, as the Provincial Plant Officer of the
Bureau of Plant Industry in La Union, took advantage of his position in falsifying the Timebook and Payroll of his office for the periods January

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to March 1977, Daily Time Record of Ducusin by causing it to appear that Ducusin participated in the same and affixed his signatures thereon
when in fact he did not sign the documents, in order to receive P225 which was supposed to have been received by Ducusin

1. To prove that Borje committed the crime, the prosecution presented the following documents as evidence: (a) Exhibit A, Timebook and
Payroll of accused-appellants office for the period January to March 1977; (b) Exhibit D, Daily Time Record for the same period of Rodrigo
Ducusin; and (c) Exhibit C, certification that Ducusin was detailed to the program

2. Ducusin testified that he was no longer connected with the Program during the period of January to March 1977 because his assignment had
been terminated. When asked for evidence to prove that he was terminated, Ducusin only referred to a verbal order

3. On appeal, Borje argued that proof beyond reasonable doubt was not established since:

a. The originals of the alleged falsified documents were not presented in court and hence, the corpus delicti was not established as
held in US v. Gregorio

b.There is no iota of evidence that the petitioner falsified the complainants signature on the alleged falsified documents

4.Reacting to the defenses contention, the Sandiganbayan held that the accuseds

reliance in the case of US v. Gregorio is misplaced since the issue in the instant case is not one of alteration or superimposition of signature or
word or figure. Sandiganbayan also questioned the relevancy of the decision in US v. Gregorio since there are modern copying devices virtually
eliminate the possibility of error in reproduction of the original

ISSUES:

1. WON Ducusins testimony with regard to his non-participation in the program is admissible

2. WON the presentation of Xerox copies of the falsified documents is enough to prove the crime of falsification of public documents

HELD:

FIRST ISSUE: No. The alleged verbal order is doubtful for under normal and usual official procedure, a written special order is issued by a
government office is cancelled, amended or modified only by another written special order, not only for the purpose of record on file but also to
prevent conflict and confusion in government operations. Under the Best Evidence Rule, the supposed verbal order cannot prevail over
the Special Order no 172 which lists Ducusin in the payroll for the Program.

SECOND ISSUE: No. In US v. Gregorio, the SC held that:

In a criminal case for the falsification of document, it is indispensable that the judges and the courts have before them the document
alleged to have been simulated, counterfeited or falsified, in order that they may find, pursuant to the evidence produced at the trial,
whether or not the crime of falsification was actually committed; in the absence of the original document, it is improper to conclude,
with only a copy of the said original in view, that there has been a falsification of a document which was neither found nor exhibited,
because in such a case, even the existence of such original document may be doubted

Widows and Orphans Association, Inc. vs. CA 212 S 360 (Certified true copy of OCT under Land Registration Act-admissible)

Facts:

1. Petitioner Widows' and Orphans Association, Inc.instituted applied for original registration of title over a parcel of land described in CFI
Quezon City.

2. Private respondent Ortigas & Co. Limited Partnership, Inc. filed an opposition to the application.

3. In a supplementary report, the Commissioner of Land Registration informed the trial court that the land sought to be registered was
"identically the same".

4. Trial court denied Ortigas' motion to dismiss, holding that its TCT's were apparently not derived from the OCT's mentioned on their
faces and did not appear to have been based on an existing original decree of registration.

5. Ortigas' motion for reconsideration having been denied, and the trial court having set the case for hearing on the merits, Ortigas filed a
petition for certiorari with prayer for a writ of preliminary injunction with the public respondent Court of Appeals.

6. Court of Appeals gave due course to the petition and nullified the trial court's order. It held that TCTs were derived from an OCT,
which in turn was based on Decree of Registration No. 1425 issued in favor of Ortigas' predecessor-in-interest.

7. Its motion for reconsideration having been denied, Widora filed the present petition for review with the Court. The Court's Third
Division set aside the decision of the Court of Appeals and reinstated the order of the trial court.

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8. The Court's Third Division held that the Court of Appeals erred in making factual findings determinative of Widora's application on the
basis of "secondary evidence" offered by Ortigas, in unilaterally correcting entries in the Ortigas Torrens titles and held that the
controversy regarding the authenticity of said titles should be resolved in "full-blown" hearings before the trial Court.

9. Hence, the present Motion for Reconsideration filed by Ortigas.

Issue: WON certified true copy of the OCT presented by Ortigas was admissible.

Held: Yes.

In arriving at its conclusion that TCT Nos. 77652 and 77653 are proper derivatives of OCT No. 351, which in turn had been issued pursuant to
Decree No. 1425, the Court of Appeals had relied on (a) a certified true copy of OCT No. 351; (b) survey plans prepared by Ortigas' Geodetic
Engineer, Mr. Carlos Angeles, which were based on plottings of the boundaries of parcels of land appearing in the Notice of Initial Hearing in
G.L.R.O. Record No. 917 and in the technical description found in the body of OCT No. 351, and in TCT Nos. 77652 and 77653; and (c) the
testimony of Engineer Angeles that these plottings showed that the land covered by the TCTs was inside the larger parcel of land covered by
the OCT, which in turn was inside the much larger parcel of land (The Hacienda de Mandaloyon) adjudicated to Ortigas' predecessor-in-interest
by Decree No. 1425 issued in G.L.R.O. Record No. 917. As noted earlier, the above evidence had been presented by Ortigas before the trial
court during the prolonged hearings on its motion to dismiss. The Court described the above evidence as "secondary" in nature and noted that
Ortigas did not establish the due execution and subsequent loss of the original documents, as required by the Rule on Secondary Evidence.
After careful re-examination of the evidence of record and applicable rules of evidence, the Court considers that the word "secondary evidence"
was inaccurate. The copy of OCT No. 351 offered by Ortigas was a certified true copy of the original thereof found in the Registration Book of
the Register of Deeds of Rizal . The admissibility of such a copy in court proceedings is an exception to the ordinary rule on secondary
evidence; such admissibility is in fact mandated by Section 47 of Act No. 496 (The Land Registration Act). Under the Land
Registration Act which was in force at the time OCT No. 351 was issued, the original thereof found in the Registration Book of the
Register of Deeds of Rizal was an official transcript of Decree No. 1425, with respect to the land covered by such decree situated in
the Province of Rizal.

Thus, OCT No. 351 constitutes direct proof of the existence of Decree No. 1425 upon which the Ortigas TCTs (Nos. 77652 and 77653) are
based. We believe further that the Court of Appeals was justified in relying upon the plotting prepared by Engineer Carlos Angeles and his
testimony explaining the significance thereof, notwithstanding the secondary nature of that plotting and testimony. For, as will be seen shortly,
authenticity and correctness of this survey plans and of Engineer Angeles's explanation thereof had already been judicially sustained in
previously decided cases.

People v. Tandoy (Photocopy of buy-bust money as evidence)

Doctrines:

The best evidence rule applies only when the contents of the document are the subject of inquiry.

Since the aforesaid marked money was presented by the prosecution solely for the purpose of establishing its existence and not its
contents, other substitutionary evidence, like a xerox copy thereof, is therefore admissible without the need of accounting for the
original.

Facts: The decision of the Regional Trial Court of Makati, convicting Mario Tandoy of the crime of violation of Art. II, Sec. 4 of Rep. Act No.
6425 known as the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972, is before us on appeal.

The accused-appellant contends that the Court a quo erred in admitting in evidence against the accused merely a xerox copy of the P10.00 bill
allegedly used as buy-bust money.

Under the second assigned error, the accused-appellant invokes the best evidence rule and questions the admission by the trial court of the
xerox copy only of the marked P10.00 bill.

Issue: WON Trial court erred in admitting evidence of Xerox xopy of the buy-bust money.

Held: No. See doctrines.

The Solicitor General, in his Comment, correctly refuted that contention thus:

This assigned error centers on the trial court's admission of the P10.00 bill marked money (Exh. E-2-A) which, according to the appellant, is
excluded under the best evidence rule for being a mere xerox copy. Apparently, appellant erroneously thinks that said marked money is an
ordinary document falling under Sec. 2, Rule 130 of the Revised Rules of Court which excludes the introduction of secondary evidence except
in the five (5) instances mentioned therein.:-cralaw

The best evidence rule applies only when the contents of the document are the subject of inquiry. Where the issue is only as to
whether or not such document was actually executed, or exists, or in the circumstances relevant to or surrounding its execution, the
best evidence rule does not apply and testimonial evidence is admissible.

Since the aforesaid marked money was presented by the prosecution solely for the purpose of establishing its existence and not its contents,
other substitutionary evidence, like a xerox copy thereof, is therefore admissible without the need of accounting for the original.

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Moreover, the presentation at the trial of the "buy-bust money" was not indispensable to the conviction of the accused-appellant because the
sale of the marijuana had been adequately proved by the testimony of the police officers. So long as the marijuana actually sold by the
accused-appellant had been submitted as an exhibit, the failure to produce the marked money itself would not constitute a fatal omission.

WHEREFORE, the appeal is DISMISSED and the challenged decision AFFIRMED in toto, with costs against the accused-appellant.

Security Bank and Trust Co. vs. Triumphs Lumber and Construction Corp. (Forged Checks)

Doctrine:

When the subject of inquiry is the contents of a document, no evidence shall be admissible other than the original document itself;
Exceptions

Case at bar: Photocopies may be admitted for failure of the other party to tender an appropriate objection to their admission, though
their probative value is nil nevertheless.

Facts: In this petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court the petitioner asks this Court to reverse the decision of Court
of Appeals ordering the petitioner to reimburse the private respondent the value of the alleged forged checks drawn against private
respondents account, plus interest and attorneys fees.

Petitioner alleges that the best evidence of the forgery were the original checks bearing the alleged forged signatures of private respondents
officers. In spite of the timely objection made by the petitioner, the private respondent introduced in evidence mere photocopies of the
questioned checks. The failure to produce the originals of the checks was a fatal omission inasmuch as there would be no evidentiary basis for
the court to declare that the instruments were forgeries. Likewise such failure amounted to a willful suppression of evidence, which created a
presumption that its production would be unfavorable to respondents case. It could also be presumed that the checks in question [were]
genuine checks regularly issued by the respondent in the course of its business, bearing the genuine signatures of the officers whom it
authorized to sign in its behalf. Also, an unfavorable inference could be drawn from the unexplained failure of private respondent to call as its
witness Mr. Co Yok Teng, whose signature was among those allegedly forged.

Issue: WON photocopy of forged checks are admissible.

Held: Yes.

On the issue of forgery, we are unable to agree with the finding of the Court of Appeals that the petitioner admitted in its Answer to the
complaint the forgery of the signatures. Far from admitting the forgery, petitioner categorically denied that the signatures on the questioned
checks were forgeries. However, by way of an alternative affirmative defense, petitioner contended that it had exercised reasonable degree of
diligence in detecting whether there was forgery. Even assuming that the signatures on the checks were forged, still petitioner could not be held
liable for the value of the checks because all the checks were complete and regular on their face. The alleged forged signatures were
sufficiently adroit as to escape detection even under the officers scrutiny.

The Court of Appeals also erred in holding that forgery was duly established. First, Section 3, Rule 130 of the Rules of Court was not complied
with by private respondent. The Section explicitly provides that when the subject of inquiry is the contents of a document, no evidence shall be
admissible other than the original document itself. This is what is known as the best evidence rule. The exceptions are as follows:

1. When the original has been lost or destroyed, or cannot be produced in court, without bad faith on the part of the offeror;

2. When the original is in the custody or under the control of the party against whom the evidence is offered, and the latter fails to produce it
after reasonable notice;

3. When the original consists of numerous accounts or other documents which cannot be examined in court without great loss of time, and the
fact sought to be established from them is only the general result of the whole; and

4. When the original is a public record in the custody of a public officer or is recorded in a public office.

In this case, the originals of the alleged forged checks had to be produced, since it was never shown that any of these exceptions was present.
What the private respondent offered were mere photocopies of the checks in question marked as Exhibits A, B, and C.[13] It never
explained the reason why it could not produce the originals of the checks. Its expert witness Crispina Tabo admitted though that the original
checks were taken back by the investigating policeman, Glenn Ticson

It is true that the photocopies of the questioned checks were all identified by private respondents witness Yu Chun Kit during his direct
testimony without objection on the part of petitioners counsel. The latter even cross-examined Yu Chun Kit, and, at the formal offer of said
exhibits, he objected to their admission solely on the grounds that they were irrelevant, immaterial and self-serving. The photocopies of the
checks may therefore be admitted for failure of petitioner to tender an appropriate objection to their admission. Nevertheless, their probative
value is nil.

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