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Ampatuan vs. Macaraig, G.R. No.

182497, June 29, 2010


NURHIDA JUHURI AMPATUAN vs. JUDGE VIRGILIO V. MACARAIG
G.R. No. 182497, 29 June 2010

FACTS: Atty. Alioden D. Dalaig, Head of the COMELEC Legal Department, was killed at
the corner of M. H. Del Pilar and Pedro Gil Streets, Ermita, Manila. Investigation
conducted by the Manila Police District Homicide Section yielded the identity of the male
perpetrator as PO1 Ampatuan. Consequently, PO1 Ampatuan was commanded to the
MPD District Director for proper disposition. Likewise, inquest proceedings were
conducted by the Manila Prosecutors Office.

On 18 April 2008, Police Senior Superintendent Guinto, rendered his Pre-Charge


Evaluation Report against PO1 Ampatuan, finding probable cause to charge PO1
Ampatuan with Grave Misconduct (Murder) and recommending that said PO1 Ampatuan
be subjected to summary hearing.

Meanwhile, on 21 April 2008, the City Prosecutor of Manila recommended that the case
against PO1 Ampatuan be set for further investigation and that the latter be released
from custody unless he is being held for other charges/legal grounds.

Armed with the 21 April 2008 recommendation of the Manila Citys Prosecution Office,
petitioner, who is the wife of PO1 Ampatuan, filed a Petition for the Issuance of a Writ of
Habeas Corpus before the RTC of Manila on 22 April 2008.

On 24 April 2008, RTC ordered the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus commanding
therein respondents to produce the body of PO1 Ampatuan and directing said
respondents to show cause why they are withholding or restraining the liberty of PO1
Ampatuan.

Seeking the reversal of RTC, the respondents averred that the filing of the administrative
case against PO1 Ampatuan is a process done by the PNP and this Court has no
authority to order the release of the subject police officer. The petitioner countered that
the letter resignation of PO1 Ampatuan has rendered the administrative case moot and
academic. Respondent however stressed that the resignation has not been acted by the
appropriate police officials of the PNP, and that the administrative case was filed while
PO1 Ampatuan is still in the active status of the PNP. The RTC reversed and dismissed
the petition.

ISSUE: THE RESPONDENT COURT GRAVELY ABUSED ITS DISCRETION WHEN IT


FAILED TO CONSIDER THAT THE ARREST AND DETENTION OF PO1 BASSER B.
AMPATUAN WAS MADE WITHOUT ANY WARRANT AND THEREFORE, ILLEGAL.

HELD: The objective of the writ is to determine whether the confinement or detention is
valid or lawful. If it is, the writ cannot be issued. What is to be inquired into is the legality
of a person's detention as of, at the earliest, the filing of the application for the writ of
habeas corpus, for even if the detention is at its inception illegal, it may, by reason of
some supervening events, such as the instances mentioned in Section 4 of Rule 102, be
no longer illegal at the time of the filing of the application

In this case, PO1 Ampatuan has been placed under Restrictive Custody. Republic Act
No. 6975 (also known as the Department of Interior and Local Government Act of 1990),
as amended by Republic Act No. 8551 (also known as the Philippine National Police
Reform and Reorganization Act of 1998), clearly provides that members of the police
force are subject to the administrative disciplinary machinery of the PNP.

Given that PO1 Ampatuan has been placed under restrictive custody, such constitutes a
valid argument for his continued detention. This Court has held that a restrictive custody
and monitoring of movements or whereabouts of police officers under investigation by
their superiors is not a form of illegal detention or restraint of liberty.

Restrictive custody is, at best, nominal restraint which is beyond the ambit of habeas
corpus. It is neither actual nor effective restraint that would call for the grant of the
remedy prayed for. It is a permissible precautionary measure to assure the PNP
authorities that the police officers concerned are always accounted for.

In sum, petitioner is unable to discharge the burden of showing that she is entitled to the
issuance of the writ prayed for in behalf of her husband, PO1 Ampatuan. The petition
fails to show on its face that the latter is unlawfully deprived of his liberty guaranteed and
enshrined in the Constitution.

Barredo vs. Vinarao, G.R. No. 168728, August 2, 2007

The writ may not be availed of when the person in custody is under a
judicial process or by virtue of a valid judgment. [13]However, the writ may be
allowed as a post-conviction remedy when the proceedings leading to the
conviction were attended by any of the following exceptional circumstances:
(1) there was a deprivation of a constitutional right resulting in the
restraint of a person;
(2) the court had no jurisdiction to impose the sentence or
(3) the imposed penalty was excessive, thus voiding the sentence as to
such excess.[14]

The rule is that if a person alleged to be restrained of his liberty is in custody of an


officer under process issued by a court or judge or by virtue of a judgment or order
of a court of record the writ of habeas corpus will not be allowed. [15] Thus, Section
4, Rule 102 of the Rules of Court provides:

Sec. 4. When writ not allowed or discharge authorized. If it appears


that the person alleged to be restrained of his liberty is in the
custody of an officer under process issued by a court or judge or by
virtue of a judgment or order of a court of record, and that the court
or judge had jurisdiction to issue the process, render the judgment,
or make the order, the writ shall not be allowed; or if the jurisdiction
appears after the writ is allowed, the person shall not be discharged by
reason of any informality or defect in the process, judgment, or
order. Nor shall anything in this rule be held to authorize the
discharge of a person charged with or convicted of an offense in the
Philippines, or of a person suffering imprisonment under lawful
judgment. (emphasis supplied)

Petitioner was detained pursuant to a final judgment of the Quezon City RTC
convicting him for the crimes of carnapping and illegal possession of firearms. He
is therefore not entitled to the writ of habeas corpus.

Kiani vs. Bureau of Immigration and Deportation, G.R. No. 160922, February 27, 2006
In this case, when petitioner filed her Petition for Habeas Corpus with the RTC in behalf of her
husband, a Charge Sheet had already been filed against him for violation of Section 37(a)(7) and
Section 45 of the Philippine Immigration Act of 1940, as amended. The filing of the Charge Sheet
before the BSI cured whatever irregularities or infirmities were attendant to his arrest. The remedy of
petitioner was to file a motion for the dismissal of the Charge Sheet and the Mission Order of the
Immigration Commissioner, not a petition for a writ of habeas corpus before the RTC. The RTC had
no authority to nullify the Mission Order issued by the Immigration Commissioner, much less set
aside the arrest of Javed Kiani. As held by this Court in Commissioner Rodriguez v. Judge
Bonifacio:34

Be that as it may, there was a valid judicial process justifying Ma Jings detention even before
respondent judge rendered his decision as shown by the Return of the Writ which averred, among
others, that a Charge Sheet was filed against Ma Jing. Even granting that the arrest of Ma Jing was
initially illegal, the filing of the Charge Sheet cured whatever incipient infirmity there was in her
arrest. Respondent judge therefore had no authority to release the party who was thus committed.
Section 4, Rule 102 of the Rules of Court provides:

SEC. 4. When writ not allowed or discharge authorized. If it appears that the person to be
restrained of his liberty is in the custody of an officer under process issued by a court or judge; or by
virtue of a judgment or order of a court of record, and that court or judge had jurisdiction to issue the
process, render the judgment, or make the order, the writ shall not be allowed; or if the

jurisdiction appears after the writ is allowed, the person shall not be discharged by reason of any
informality or defect in the process, judgment or order. Nor shall anything in this rule be held to
authorize the discharge of a person charged with or convicted of an offense in the Philippines, or of
a person suffering imprisonment under lawful judgment.

Once a person detained is duly charged in court, he may no longer question his detention through a
petition for issuance of a writ of habeas corpus. His remedy would be to quash the information
and/or the warrant of arrest duly issued. The writ of habeas corpus should not be allowed after the
party sought to be released had been charged before any court. The term "court" includes quasi-
judicial bodies like the Deportation Board of the Bureau of Immigration. 35

The CA acted in accord with jurisprudence when it affirmed the ruling of the RTC declaring that it had
no jurisdiction over petitioners plea to set aside the Summary Deportation Order issued by the BOC
against her husband Javed Kiani. Under Section 8, Chapter 3, Title I, Book III of Executive Order No.
292, the power to deport aliens is vested on the President of the Philippines, subject to the
requirements of due process. The Immigration Commissioner is vested with authority to deport
aliens under Section 37 of the Philippine Immigration Act of 1940, as amended. Thus, a party
aggrieved by a Deportation Order issued by the BOC is proscribed from assailing said Order in the
RTC even via a petition for a writ of habeas corpus. Conformably with ruling of the Court in Domingo
v. Scheer,36 such party may file a motion for the reconsideration thereof before the BOC. The Court
ruled therein that "there is no law or rule which provides that a Summary Deportation Order issued
by the BOC in the exercise of its authority becomes final after one year from its issuance, or that the
aggrieved party is barred from filing a motion for a reconsideration of any order or decision of the
BOC." The Court, likewise, declared that in deportation proceedings, the Rules of Court may be
applied in a suppletory manner and that the aggrieved party may file a motion for reconsideration of
a decision or final order under Rule 37 of said Rules.

In the Matter of the Petition for Habeas Corpus of Kunting, G.R. No. 167193, April 19, 2006
Under Section 1, Rule 102 of the Rules of Court, the writ of habeas
corpus extends to all case of illegal confinement or detention by which any person
is deprived of his liberty, or by which the rightful custody of any person is
withheld from the person entitled thereto. The remedy of habeas corpus has one
objective: to inquire into the cause of detention of a person, [3] and if found illegal,
the court orders the release of the detainee. [4] If, however, the detention is proven
lawful, then the habeas corpus proceedings terminate.[5]

Section 4, Rule 102 of the Rules of Court provides when the writ is not
allowed:

SEC. 4. When writ not allowed or discharge authorized.If it


appears that the person alleged to be restrained of his liberty is in the
custody of an officer under process issued by a court or judge or by
virtue of a judgment or order of a court of record, and that the court or
judge had jurisdiction to issue the process, render the judgment, or make
the order, the writ shall not be allowed; or if the jurisdiction appears after
the writ is allowed, the person shall not be discharged by reason of any
informality or defect in the process, judgment, or order. Nor shall
anything in this rule be held to authorize the discharge of a person
charged with or convicted of an offense in the Philippines, or of a
person suffering imprisonment under lawful judgment. [6]

In this case, Kuntings detention by the PNP-IG was under process issued by
the RTC. He was arrested by the PNP by virtue of the alias order of arrest issued by
Judge Danilo M. Bucoy, RTC, Branch 2, Isabela City, Basilan. His temporary
detention at PNP-IG, Camp Crame, Quezon City, was thus authorized by the trial
court.

Moreover, Kunting was charged with four counts of Kidnapping for Ransom
and Serious Illegal Detention in Criminal Case Nos. 3608-1164, 3537-1129, 3674-
1187, and 3611-1165. In accordance with the last sentence of Section 4 above, the
writ cannot be issued and Kunting cannot be discharged since he has been charged
with a criminal offense. Bernarte v. Court of Appeals[7] holds that once the person
detained is duly charged in court, he may no longer question his detention by a
petition for the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus.

Nevertheless, this Court notes that the RTC in its Order dated February 11,
2005 reiterated its Order dated September 15, 2003, directing the Police
Superintendent and Chief, Legal Affairs Division, PNP-IG,
Camp Crame, Quezon City, to turn over Kunting to the court. The trial court has
been waiting for two years for the PNP-IG to turn over the person of Kunting for
the trial of his case. The PNP-IG has delayed the turn over because it is waiting for
the DOJ to request for the transfer of venue of the trial of the case
from Isabela City, Basilan to Pasig City. In its Comment, the Office of the Solicitor
General stated that the PNP-IG is presently awaiting the resolution of the Motion
for Transfer of Venue it requested from the DOJ. In this regard, the Police Chief
Superintendent is, therefore, directed to take positive steps towards action on said
motion.

WHEREFORE, the instant petition for habeas corpus is


hereby DISMISSED.
In the Matter of the Petition for Habeas Corpus of Eufemia E. Rodriguez, G.R. No. 169482, January 29,
2008
The writ of habeas corpus extends to all cases of illegal confinement or detention by which any
person is deprived of his liberty or by which the rightful custody of a person is being withheld from
the one entitled thereto.10 It is issued when one is either deprived of liberty or is wrongfully being
prevented from exercising legal custody over another person.11 Thus, it contemplates two instances:
(1) deprivation of a persons liberty either through illegal confinement or through detention and (2)
withholding of the custody of any person from someone entitled to such custody.

In this case, the issue is not whether the custody of Eufemia is being rightfully withheld from
petitioner but whether Eufemia is being restrained of her liberty. Significantly, although petitioner
admits that he did not have legal custody of Eufemia, he nonetheless insists that respondents
themselves have no right to her custody. Thus, for him, the issue of legal custody is irrelevant. What
is important is Eufemias personal freedom.

Fundamentally, in order to justify the grant of the writ of habeas corpus, the restraint of liberty must
be in the nature of an illegal and involuntary deprivation of freedom of action. 12

In general, the purpose of the writ of habeas corpus is to determine whether or not a
particular person is legally held. A prime specification of an application for a writ of habeas
corpus, in fact, is an actual and effective, and not merely nominal or moral, illegal restraint of
liberty. "The writ of habeas corpus was devised and exists as a speedy and effectual remedy
to relieve persons from unlawful restraint, and as the best and only sufficient defense of
personal freedom. A prime specification of an application for a writ of habeas corpus is
restraint of liberty. The essential object and purpose of the writ of habeas corpus is to inquire
into all manner of involuntary restraint as distinguished from voluntary, and to relieve a
person therefrom if such restraint is illegal. Any restraint which will preclude freedom of
action is sufficient."13 (emphasis supplied)

In passing upon a petition for habeas corpus, a court or judge must first inquire into whether the
petitioner is being restrained of his liberty.14 If he is not, the writ will be refused. Inquiry into the cause
of detention will proceed only where such restraint exists.15 If the alleged cause is thereafter found to
be unlawful, then the writ should be granted and the petitioner discharged. 16 Needless to state, if
otherwise, again the writ will be refused.

While habeas corpus is a writ of right, it will not issue as a matter of course or as a mere perfunctory
operation on the filing of the petition.17 Judicial discretion is called for in its issuance and it must be
clear to the judge to whom the petition is presented that, prima facie, the petitioner is entitled to the
writ.18 It is only if the court is satisfied that a person is being unlawfully restrained of his liberty will the
petition for habeas corpus be granted.19 If the respondents are not detaining or restraining the
applicant or the person in whose behalf the petition is filed, the petition should be dismissed. 20

In this case, the Court of Appeals made an inquiry into whether Eufemia was being restrained of her
liberty. It found that she was not:

There is no proof that Eufemia is being detained and restrained of her liberty by
respondents. Nothing on record reveals that she was forcibly taken by
respondents. On the contrary, respondents, being Eufemias adopted children, are taking
care of her.21 (emphasis supplied)
The Court finds no cogent or compelling reason to disturb this finding.

Vicente vs. Majaducon, A.m. No. RT J-02-1698 (Formerly OCA IPI No. 00-1024-RTJ), June 23, 2005
Andal vs. Peopleof the Philippines, G.R. No. 138268, May 26, 1999
Evangelista vs. Sistoza, G.R. No. 143881, August 9, 2001
People vs. Caco, G.R. No.s. 94994-95, March 7, 1997
Salientes vs. Abanilla, G.R. No. 162734, August 29, 2006
Hernandez vs. San Juan-Santos, G.R. No. 166470, August 7, 2009
Araneta vs. Araneta, G.r. No. 190814, October 9, 2013
Mother given custody of child below seven years old
Pablo-Gualberto vs. Gualberto, G.R. 154994, June 28, 2005

Petition for habeas corpus involving custody of minors


Summons not required in petition for habeas corpus
Writ of habeas corpus enforceable within the courts judicial region
Tujan-Militante vs. Cada-Deapera, G.R. No. 210636, July 28, 2014

Jurisdiction of Supreme Court and Court of Appeals and to issue writ of habeas corpus involving
custody of children
Writ issued by Supreme Court and Court of Appeals enforceable anywhere in the Philippines
Thorton vs. Thorton, G.R. No. 154598, August 16, 2004

In the Matter of the Application for the Writ of Habeas Corpus Reclassifying Sentence to R.A. No. 8353
in behalf of Rogelio Ormilla, et al. vs. The Director, Bureau of Corrections, G.R. No. 170497, January 22,
2007

Office of the Solicitor General vs. Judge de Castro, A.M. No. RTJ-062018 (Formerly Adm. Matter
OCA-IPI No. 05-2360-RTJ, August 3, 2007

Office of the Court Administrator vs. Judge Perello, A.M. No. RTJ-051952, December 24, 2008

Fletcher vs. The Director of Bureau of Corrections, UDK-14071, July 17, 2009

Go Sr. vs. Ramos, G.R. No. 16769, September 4, 2009

Hernandez vs. San Juan-Santos, G.R. No. 166470, August 7, 2009

Secretary of National Defense vs. Manalo, G.R. No. 180906, October 7, 2008
Canlas vs. Napico Homeowners Association I-XIII, Inc., G.R. No. 182795, June 5, 2008
Does not protect right to travel
Remedy should be resorted to and granted judiciously
Not proper remedy to obtain custody of a minor child
Caram vs. Segui, G.R. No. 193652, August 5, 2014

Differences between Amparo and search warrant


De Lima vs. Gatdula, G.R. No. 204528, February 19, 2013
Rodriguez vs. Arroyo, G.R. No. 191805, November 15, 2011
Jurisprudence:
Tapuz vs. Judge del Rosario, G.R. No. 182795, June 5, 2008
Castillo vs. Cruz, G.R. No. 182165, November 25, 2009
Manila Electric Company vs. Lim, G.R. No. 184769, October 5 2010
Substantial evidence required
Not only direct but circumstantial evidence may be considered

Saez vs. Arroyo, G.R. No. 183533, September 25, 2012

Most Reverend Predro D. Arigo vs. Scott S. Swift, G.R. No. 2016510, September 16, 2014