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ARTICLE 45.

1. (SANCHEZ)

SEA LION FISHING CORPORATION, PETITIONER, VS. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, RESPONDENT.
G.R. No. 172678, March 23 : 2011
DEL CASTILLO, J.:

When an instrument or tool used in a crime is being claimed by a third-party not liable to the offense, such
third-party must first establish its ownership over the same.

FACTS: In response to fishermen's report of poaching off Mangsee Island in Balabac, Palawan, a combined
team of Philippine Marines, Coast Guard and barangay officials conducted search and seizure operations
therein. There they found F/V Sea Lion anchored three nautical miles northwest of Mangsee Island. Beside it
were five boats and a long fishing net already spread over the water. The team boarded the vessel and
apprehended her captain, a Filipino, and a crew composed of three Filipinos and three Chinese. Also arrested
were 17 Chinese fishermen aboard F/V Sea Lion.

Various charges were thereafter filed (1) Violation of Section 97 [7] of Republic Act (RA) No. 8550[8] against all
those arrested (I.S. No. 2004-032); (2) (I.S. No. 2004-061); and (3) Violation of Section 27(a) and (f)[10] of RA
9147[11] and of Section 87[12] of RA 8550 against all those arrested and the President of the corporation which
owned the vessel(I.S. Nos. 2004-68, 2004-69, and 2004-70)

Ruling of the Provincial Prosecutor: Dismissed I.S. Nos. 2004-61, 2004-68 and 2004-69, he nevertheless
found probable cause for the remaining charges [13] but only against the 17 Chinese fishermen.[14] The crew of
F/V Sea Lion did not assent to the illegal acts of said 17 Chinese fishermen who were rescued by the crew of
the F/V Sea Lion from a distressed Chinese vessel. The prosecutor concluded that the crew, unarmed,
outnumbered and hampered by language barrier, acted only out of uncontrollable fear of imminent danger to
their lives and property which hindered them from asserting their authority over these Chinese nationals.

Petitioner filed before the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor an Urgent Motion for Release of
Evidence[15] alleging that it owns the vessel. Said Office thus issued a Resolution: F/[V] Sea Lion is hereby
recommended to be released to the movant upon proper showing of evidence of its ownership of the
aforesaid vessel and the posting of a bond. This Resolution was later amended: In addition to the conditions
therein, the release of the said vessel shall be with the approval of the Provincial Committee on Illegal Entrants
which has jurisdiction over all apprehended vessels involved in poaching. [19] Petitioner, however, failed to act in
accordance with said Resolutions.

The case for Violation of Section 97 of RA 8550 was docketed as Criminal Case No. 18965 while that for
Violation of Section 87 of the same law was docketed as Criminal Case No. 19422.
Ruling of the RTC CC No. 18965: The Chinese nationals entered separate pleas of "not guilty" which they
later changed to "guilty" for the lesser offense of Violation of Section 88, sub-paragraph (3) [20] of RA 8550. They
were declared guilty of said lesser offense. The Sentence further provided that the Fishing Vessel F/V Sea Lion
I as well as the fishing paraphernalia and equipments used by the accused in committing the crime [are] hereby
ordered confiscated in favor of the government. Also, having appeared that the accused have been detained
since January 19, 2004, the period of their detention is hereby credited in their favor.

Ruling of the RTC CC No. 19422: WHEREFORE, with the plea of guilty of all seventeen (17) accused, the
Court hereby finds them guilty beyond reasonable doubt as principals of the crime of Violation of Section 87 of
R.A. 8550 (Poaching). The Fishing Vessel F/V Sea Lion 1 as well as the fishing paraphernalia and equipments
used by the accused in committing the crime [are] hereby ordered confiscated in the favor of the government.

It was only after the issuance of the above Sentences that petitioner again made its move by filing a Motion for
Reconsideration. It prayed for the trial court to delete from said Sentences the confiscation of F/V Sea Lion.
The Office of the Provincial Prosecutor filed an Opposition thereto. Trial court denied petitioner's Motion for
Reconsideration. Hence, petitioner filed a Petition for Certiorari and Mandamus[28] with the CA.

Ruling of the CA: Denied the petition.[29] The CA ruled that there was no lack of jurisdiction, excess of
jurisdiction or grave abuse of discretion on the part of the trial court since it had jurisdiction over the crimes as
alleged in the Informations and the penalty for violating the laws stated therein. Necessarily, it had the authority
to seize the F/V Sea Lion which was mentioned in the said Informations. The CA further held that while the
petitioner attempted to claim as its own the fishing vessel, its effort is undeserving of merit due to failure to
adduce evidence. The appellate court also denied petitioner's subsequent Motion for Reconsideration.
Petitioner contends that F/V Sea Lion should be released to it because it is the registered owner of said vessel
and her captain and crew members were not among those accused of and convicted.Petitioner invokes Article
45 of the Revised Penal Code which provides: ART. 45. Confiscation and forfeiture of the proceeds or
instruments of the crime. - Every penalty imposed for the commission of a felony shall carry with it the
forfeiture of the proceeds of the crime and the instruments or tools with which it was committed. Such proceeds
and instruments or tools shall be confiscated and forfeited in favor of the Government, unless they be the
property of a third person not liable for the offense, but those articles which are not subject of lawful
commerce shall be destroyed.

Respondent argues that since the 17 Chinese nationals were charged with violations of the provisions of RA
8550, a special law, Article 45 of the Revised Penal Code does not apply. This is in view of Article 10 of said
Code which specifically declares that acts punishable by special laws are not subject to the provisions of the
Revised Penal Code. They are only supplementary to such laws unless the latter should specifically provide
the contrary. Hence, the forfeiture and confiscation of the fishing vessel under RA 8550 are different from the
forfeiture and confiscation under the Revised Penal Code which are additional penalties imposed in the event
of conviction. And, since RA 8550 provides that the vessel used in connection with or in direct violation of the
provisions of RA 8550 shall be subjected to forfeiture in favor of the government without mention of any
distinction as to who owns the vessel, the forfeiture of F/V Sea Lion was proper.

ISSUE: Whether the confiscation of F/V Sea Lion was valid.[33]

HELD: Petitioner's claim of ownership of F/V Sea Lion is not supported by any proof on record. The only
document on record that is relevant in this regard is a request for the release of the F/V Sea Lion based on
petitioner's alleged ownership filed with the Provincial Prosecutor. While the latter authorized the release of
said fishing vessel, this was conditioned upon petitioner's submission of a proof of ownership and the filing of a
bond, with which petitioner failed to comply. Even when judicial proceedings commenced, nothing was heard
from the petitioner.
As correctly observed by the CA: There is firstly the factual issue - to be proved by proper evidence in order to
be properly considered by the court - that the vessel is owned by a third party other than the accused. Article
45 required too that proof be adduced that the third party is not liable for the offense. After the admission by the
accused through their guilty plea that the vessel had been used in the commission of a crime, we believe and
so hold that this additional Article 45 requirement cannot be simply inferred from the mere fact that the alleged
owner is not charged in the same case before the court.[43]
Accordingly, petitioner's recourse to a motion for reconsideration was not proper. Although it attached a copy of
an alleged Certificate of Registration, the same cannot be considered by the trial court because it has not been
formally offered, pursuant to Section 34, Rule 132 of the Rules of Court. As suggested by the CA, petitioner
should have instead moved for a new trial or reopening of the trial on the confiscation aspect, rather than a
mere motion for reconsideration.[44]

Given the absence of any admissible evidence of third-party ownership and the failure to comply with the
additional Article 45 requirement, the court's order to confiscate the F/V Sea Lion pursuant to Article 87 of R.A.
No. 8550 cannot be incorrect to the point of being an act in grave abuse of discretion. [45]
In fine, it has been established beyond reasonable doubt that F/V Sea Lion was used by the 17 Chinese
fishermen in the commission of the crimes. On the other hand, petitioner presented no evidence at all to
support its claim of ownership of F/V Sea Lion. Therefore, the forfeiture of F/V Sea Lion in favor of the
government was proper.

CHAPTER IV. APPLICATION OF PENALTIES (Arts. 46-88)

ARTICLE 48. Penalty for complex crimes.

1. (SANTOS)
INTESTATE ESTATE OF MANOLITA GONZALES v. People (Santos)

Petitioners contention:

After my appointment as Administratrix, I was able to confer with some of the children of my sister
Zenaida Carungcong Sato[,] who predeceased our mother Manolita Carungcong Y Gonzales, having
died in Japan in 1991.

In my conference with my nieces Karen Rose Sato and Wendy Mitsuko Sato, age[d] 27 and 24
respectively, I was able to learn that prior to the death of my mother Manolita Carungcong Y
Gonzale[s], [s]pecifically on o[r] about November 24, 1992, their father William Sato, through
fraudulent misrepresentations, was able to secure the signature and thumbmark of my mother on a
Special Power of Attorney whereby my niece Wendy Mitsuko Sato, who was then only twenty (20)
years old, was made her attorney-in-fact, to sell and dispose four (4) valuable pieces of land in
Tagaytay City. William Sato told her that the documents she was being made to sign involved her
taxes. At that time, my mother was completely blind, having gone blind almost ten (10) years prior to
November, 1992.

William Sato failed to account for the same and never delivered the proceeds to Manolita

The City Prosecutor of Quezon City dismissed the complaint. 4 On appeal, however, the
Secretary of Justice reversed and set and directed the City Prosecutor of Quezon City to file an
Information against Sato for violation of Article 315, paragraph 3(a) of the Revised Penal Code

Sato moved for the quashal of the Information, claiming that under Article 332 of the Revised Penal Code, his
relationship to the person allegedly defrauded, the deceased Manolita who was his mother-in-law, was an
exempting circumstance.

The trial court granted Satos motion and ordered the dismissal of the criminal case.

Motion for Reconsideration: The Trial Prosecutors contention is that the death of the wife of the accused
severed the relationship of affinity between accused and his mother-in-law. Therefore, the mantle of protection
provided to the accused by the relationship is no longer obtaining.

TC: DENIED

Certiorari in the CA: Dismissed. TC finding was sustained.

Hence, this petition:


The resolution of this case rests on the interpretation of Article 332 of the Revised Penal Code. In particular, it
calls for the determination of the following: (1) the effect of death on the relationship by affinity created between
a surviving spouse and the blood relatives of the deceased spouse and (2) the extent of the coverage of Article
332.

Effect of Death on Relationship By Affinity as Absolutory Cause

Article 332 provides for an absolutory cause16in the crimes of theft, estafa (or swindling) and malicious mischief.
It limits the responsibility of the offender to civil liability and frees him from criminal liability by virtue of his
relationship to the offended party.

If marriage gives rise to ones relationship by affinity to the blood relatives of ones spouse, does the
extinguishment of marriage by the death of the spouse dissolve the relationship by affinity?

The continuing affinity view maintains that relationship by affinity between the surviving spouse and the kindred
of the deceased spouse continues even after the death of the deceased spouse, regardless of whether the
marriage produced children or not.29 Under this view, the relationship by affinity endures even after the
dissolution of the marriage that produced it as a result of the death of one of the parties to the said marriage.
This view considers that, where statutes have indicated an intent to benefit step-relatives or in-laws, the "tie of
affinity" between these people and their relatives-by-marriage is not to be regarded as terminated upon the
death of one of the married parties.30

However, the coverage of Article 332 is strictly limited to the felonies mentioned therein. The plain, categorical
and unmistakable language of the provision shows that it applies exclusively to the simple crimes of theft,
swindling and malicious mischief. It does not apply where any of the crimes mentioned under Article 332 is
complexed with another crime, such as theft through falsification or estafa through falsification. 39

The allegations in the Information essentially charged a crime that was not simple estafa. Sato resorted to
falsification of public documents (particularly, the special power of attorney and the deeds of sale) as a
necessary means to commit the estafa.

Since the crime with which respondent was charged was not simple estafa but the complex crime of estafa
through falsification of public documents, Sato cannot avail himself of the absolutory cause provided under
Article 332 of the Revised Penal Code in his favor.

In considering whether the accused is liable for the complex crime of estafa through falsification of public
documents, it would be wrong to consider the component crimes separately from each other. While there may
be two component crimes (estafa and falsification of documents), both felonies are animated by and result from
one and the same criminal intent for which there is only one criminal liability.48 That is the concept of a complex
crime. In other words, while there are two crimes, they are treated only as one, subject to a single criminal
liability.
As opposed to a simple crime where only one juridical right or interest is violated (e.g., homicide which violates
the right to life, theft which violates the right to property), 49 a complex crime constitutes a violation of diverse
juridical rights or interests by means of diverse acts, each of which is a simple crime in itself. 50 Since only a
single criminal intent underlies the diverse acts, however, the component crimes are considered as elements of
a single crime, the complex crime. This is the correct interpretation of a complex crime as treated under Article
48 of the Revised Penal Code.

Although [a] complex crime quantitatively consists of two or more crimes, it is only one crime in law on which a
single penalty is imposed and the two or more crimes constituting the same are more conveniently termed as
component crimes.53 (emphasis supplied)

In [a] complex crime, although two or more crimes are actually committed, they constitute only one crime in the
eyes of the law as well as in the conscience of the offender. The offender has only one criminal intent. Even in
the case where an offense is a necessary means for committing the other, the evil intent of the offender is only
one.54

Applying the above principles to this case, the allegations in the Information show that the falsification of public
document was consummated when Sato presented a ready-made SPA to Manolita who signed the same as a
statement of her intention in connection with her taxes. While the falsification was consummated upon the
execution of the SPA, the consummation of the estafa occurred only when Sato later utilized the SPA. He did
so particularly when he had the properties sold and thereafter pocketed the proceeds of the sale. Damage or
prejudice to Manolita was caused not by the falsification of the SPA (as no damage was yet caused to the
property rights of Manolita at the time she was made to sign the document) but by the subsequent use of the
said document. That is why the falsification of the public document was used to facilitate and ensure (that is, as
a necessary means for) the commission of the estafa.

The situation would have been different if Sato, using the same inducement, had made Manolita sign a deed of
sale of the properties either in his favor or in favor of third parties. In that case, the damage would have been
caused by, and at exactly the same time as, the execution of the document, not prior thereto.

Therefore, the crime committed would only have been the simple crime of estafa. 63 On the other hand, absent
any inducement (such as if Manolita herself had been the one who asked that a document pertaining to her
taxes be prepared for her signature, but what was presented to her for her signature was an SPA), the crime
would have only been the simple crime of falsification. 64

Petition is hereby GRANTED. The case is remanded to the trial court which is directed to try the accused with
dispatch for the complex crime of estafa through falsification of public documents.

2. (TABILOG)
Art 48. In a complex crime, although two or more crimes are actually committed, they constitute only
one crime in the eyes of the law as well as in the conscience of the offender, hence, there is only one
penalty imposed for the commission of a complex crime.
PEOPLE VS GAFFUD [TABILOG]
GR No. 168050, September 19, 2008
Puno, C.J.

FACTS: In the morning of May 10, 1994 Dominga Salvador, wife of Manuel, went to the house of Bernardino
Gaffud, Jr. to claim her husbands share/fees in the construction of the Barangay Hall. Gaffud told her that he
will go to her house later in the afternoon. On or about 6:30PM Barangay Captain Potado Ballang saw Gaffud
along the riverbank, a few meters away from the house of Manuel. Ballang asked Gaffud what he was doing,
and Gaffud answered he was looking for his boat. However, Ballang knew that the Gaffud did not own a boat.
On or about 8:00PM Dan Dangpals, while inside his house, heard successive gunshots, and when he went out
of his house, he saw Manuel Salvadors house burning about 200 meters away. He heard persons laughing
and saw the light of a flashlight and persons moving away from the burning house. At the same time, Orly
Salvador, also heard two gunshots then he saw the house of his uncle, Manuel, burning. Because of the glow
emanating therefrom, he saw three persons within the vicinity of the burning house. He saw them hurriedly
leaving the place towards the direction of the Cagayan river. One of the three was holding a flashlight, whom he
identified as Gaffud. After the house was burned, Orly went towards the barangay hall to see if his uncle
Manuel Salvador was there, but he met Ballang who informed him that his uncle was not at the barangay
hall. They then proceeded to the burned house, and found the charred remains of Manuel Salvador and Analyn
Salvador. It is also good to note that Dominga testified in the courts that before the murder was committed, she
had filed a complaint against Gaffud and his brother in their barangay for their act of slaughtering her pig, ergo
Gaffud has a long standing grudge to the victims.

Defense- Gaffud denied the accusation leveled against him, and testified that the approximate time of the
burning of the victims house, he was at home, entertaining his in-laws, Balbino Bravo and Rufina Bravo, who
was there for a visit. After eating dinner, he and Balbino Bravo talked. At around 7:00 to 8:00 PM, he and
Balbino Bravo saw a blaze coming from the other side of the Cagayan River, about 50 to 80 meters away from
the house of the Bravos. They did not mind the blaze, and instead went to sleep. Also he is questioning the
decision of the RTC. He states that there is no proof whatsoever as to what overt act he committed which
would constitute the crime of murder.

Crime charged against assailant: Double Murder for the death of Manuel and Analyn Salvador.

RTC- guilty beyond reasonable doubt of Two counts of Murder imposing him the penalty of death for the
murder of Manuel and another penalty of death for the murder of Analyn.
As the death penalty was imposed, the case was elevated to this Court for automatic review. The case was
transferred to the CA for appropriate action and disposition per Resolution [6] of this Court dated August 24,
2004.
CA- guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the complex crime of double murder imposing him the penalty of death

ISSUE: Whether or not a complex crime is attendant in this case.

HELD: Yes.
SC guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the complex crime of double murder imposing him the penalty of
reclusion perpetua.

Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC), as amended, reads: ARTICLE 48. Penalty for complex crimes.
When a single act constitutes two or more grave or less grave felonies, or when an offense is a necessary
means for committing the other, the penalty for the most serious crime shall be imposed, the same to be
applied in its maximum period. In a complex crime, although two or more crimes are actually committed, they
constitute only one crime in the eyes of the law as well as in the conscience of the offender. Hence, there is
only one penalty imposed for the commission of a complex crime. There are two kinds of complex crime. The
first is known as compound crime, or when a single act constitutes two or more grave or less grave
felonies. The second is known as complex crime proper, or when an offense is a necessary means for
committing the other. The classic example of the first of kind is when a single bullet results in the death of two
or more persons. A different rule governs where separate and distinct acts result in a number killed. Deeply
rooted is the doctrine that when various victims expire from separate shots, such acts constitute separate and
distinct crimes.
The underlying philosophy of complex crimes in the Revised Penal Code, which follows the pro reo principle, is
intended to favor the accused by imposing a single penalty irrespective of the crimes committed. The rationale
being, that the accused who commits two crimes with single criminal impulse demonstrates lesser perversity
than when the crimes are committed by different acts and several criminal resolutions. In light of these
precedents, we hold that the single act of accused-appellant burning the house of Manuel Salvador, with the
main objective of killing the latter and his daughter, Analyn Salvador, resulting in their deaths resulted in the
complex crime of double murder. Under Article 248 of the RPC, murder is committed by means of fire. Since
the maximum penalty imposed for murder was death, when the case was pending in the CA, the CA correctly
imposed the penalty of death for the complex crime of double murder instead of the two death penalties
imposed by the RTC for two counts of murder. In view, however, of the passage of Republic Act No. 9346
(otherwise known as An Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty in the Philippines), we reduce the
penalty of death to reclusion perpetua with no eligibility for parole.

3. (TAMONDONG)

Article 48- If homicide or murder is committed with the use of an unlicensed firearm, such use of an
unlicensed firearm shall be considered as an aggravating circumstance.

People vs. Malinao

G.R. No. 128148. February 16, 2004

AUSTRIA-MARTINEZ, J.:

FACTS:

Appellant Johnny Malinao, armed with a .38 caliber revolver, was drinking with some friends at a table on a
sidewalk near his house at the corner of McKinley Street, a narrow alley. Victim Nestor was on his way home
from work and passed by the place where appellant was drinking with some friends. As Nestor was
approaching, appellant fired his gun and invited Nestor to join them and offered him a drink which Nestor
accepted. Then Nestor excused himself for home but appellant offered him another drink, which he politely
refused. Enraged at the refusal, appellant drew his revolver from his waist and shot Nestor on the chest. When
Nestor fell, appellant shot him again at the back of the head, resulting in his immediate death

Appellant was charged with two information for the crime of Murder under the Revised Penal Code and Illegal
Possession of Firearm and Ammunition under P.D. No. 1866. Appellant admits having killed Nestor but claims
self-defense. He testified that on the day of the incident, Nestor, armed with a .38 caliber handgun, drew his
weapon to fire at appellant but appellant grappled with Nestor for possession of the gun and in the struggle, the
gun exploded. He further stated that after he succeeded in wrestling the gun from Nestor, Nestor fought back
and held his legs so he fired at Nestor. Thereafter, he left and went to the house of his brother in law. Later, he
met Fiscal Wayne Villarin and they went to the Catbalogan Police Station where he surrendered to the police

The trial court sustained the evidence presented by the prosecution and found appellants claim of self-defense
to be not credible. The trial court likewise found that the prosecution had established that appellant was not a
licensee of any firearm. In convicting appellant, the trial court, applying People vs. Barros, where Supreme
Court held that an accused who is charged with having committed murder or homicide with the use of an
unlicensed firearm should be liable only for the graver offense of aggravated illegal possession of firearm under
the second paragraph of Section 1 of PD 1866 because the situation contemplated therein is from the punitive
standpoint, virtually of the nature of the so-called special complex crimes, which should more appropriately be
called composite crimes and only a single penalty is imposed for each of such composite crimes although
composed of two or more offenses. The dispositive portion of the decision thus reads: WHEREFORE, the
information for murder against Johnny Malinao in is hereby dismissed and judgment for illegal possession of
firearm is hereby rendered finding him guilty beyond reasonable doubt of illegal possession of firearm in its
aggravated form. He is hereby sentenced to the penalty of death.

Hence, the case is before the Court on automatic review.

ISSUE: Whether or not Johnny Malinao is guilty beyond reasonable doubt of illegal possession of firearm in its
aggravated form?

HELD: No. Johnny Malinao is liable for the crime of murder only. We note that P.D. 1866 as invoked by the trial
court was amended by R.A. 8294. The law now provides that if homicide or murder is committed with the use of
an unlicensed firearm, such use of an unlicensed firearm shall be considered as an aggravating circumstance.
This signifies a legislative intent to treat as a single offense the illegal possession of firearms and the
commission of murder or homicide with the use of an unlicensed firearm. Thus where an accused used an
unlicensed firearm in committing homicide or murder, he may no longer be charged with what used to be the
two (2) separate offenses of homicide or murder under The Revised Penal Code and qualified illegal
possession of firearms used in homicide or murder under P.D. 1866; in other words, where murder or homicide
was committed, the penalty for illegal possession of firearms is no longer imposable since it becomes merely a
special aggravating circumstance.

Applied to the present case, appellant may not now be convicted of illegal possession of firearm in its
aggravated form by considering the commission of Murder or Homicide as an aggravating circumstance
because under R.A. No. 8294, the use of an unlicensed firearm in a murder or homicide case is considered
simply as a special aggravating circumstance in the crime of homicide or murder and no longer treated as a
separate offense in its aggravated form.

The use of the unlicensed firearm by appellant in killing Nestor may not be used against appellant as a special
aggravating circumstance because there is no allegation that the crime of Murder was committed with the use
of an unlicensed firearm, as mandated by Section 8 of Rule 110 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure.

In fine, appellant may be held liable only for murder which is punishable by reclusion perpetua to death.
Nighttime, while alleged in the information, cannot be appreciated as an aggravating circumstance because
there is no evidence that appellant purposely sought nighttime to facilitate the killing or to insure its execution or
accomplishment or to evade his arrest. ]But the mitigating circumstance of voluntary surrender should be
appreciated in favor of the appellant. Hence, appellant Johnny Malinao is found GUILTY beyond reasonable
doubt of murder and sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua.

4. (TAN)
Art. 48 Penalty for complex crimes. Where the law provides a single penalty for two or more component
offenses, the resulting crime is called a special complex crime. A special complex crime, or more properly, a
composite crime, has its own definition and special penalty in the Revised Penal Code, as amended.
G.R. No. 178321October 5, 2011
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee,
vs.
CONRADO LAOG y RAMIN, accused-appellant. (Tan)

FACTS:
AAA testified that at around six oclock in the evening of June 6, 2000, she and her friend, Jennifer Patawaran-
Rosal, were walking along the rice paddies on their way to apply for work at a canteen near the National
Highway in Sampaloc, San Rafael, Bulacan. Suddenly, appellant, who was holding an ice pick and a lead pipe,
waylaid them and forcibly brought them to a grassy area at the back of a concrete wall. Without warning,
appellant struck AAA in the head with the lead pipe causing her to feel dizzy and to fall down. When Jennifer
saw this, she cried out for help but appellant also hit her on the head with the lead pipe, knocking her down.
Appellant stabbed Jennifer several times with the ice pick and thereafter covered her body with thick grass.

Appellant then turned to AAA. He hit AAA in the head several times more with the lead pipe and stabbed her on
the face. While AAA was in such defenseless position, appellant pulled down her jogging pants, removed her
panty, and pulled up her blouse and bra. He then went on top of her, sucked her breasts and inserted his penis
into her vagina. After raping AAA, appellant also covered her with grass. At that point, AAA passed out.

When AAA regained consciousness, it was nighttime and raining hard. She crawled until she reached her
uncles farm at daybreak on June 8, 2000. When she saw him, she waved at him for help. Her grandfather,
BBB, and a certain Nano then brought her to Carpa Hospital in Baliuag, Bulacan where she stayed for more
than three weeks. She later learned that Jennifer had died. CCC, neighbor of AAA and Jennifer, testified that
sometime after June 6, 2000, she visited AAA at the hospital and asked AAA about the whereabouts of
Jennifer. AAA told her to look for Jennifer somewhere at Buenavista. She sought the assistance of Barangay
Officials and they went to Buenavista where they found Jennifers cadaver covered with grass and already
bloated.

During cross-examination, AAA explained that she did not try to run away when appellant accosted them
because she trusted appellant who was her uncle by affinity. She said that she never thought he would harm
them.

Appellant, on the other hand, denied the charges against him, although he admitted that his nipa hut is more or
less only 100 meters away from the scene of the crime. Appellant testified that he was at home cooking dinner
around the time the crimes were committed. With him were his children, Ronnie, Jay, Oliver and Conrado, Jr.
and his nephew, Rey Laog. At around seven oclock, he was arrested by the police officers of San Rafael,
Bulacan. He learned that his wife had reported him to the police after he went wild that same night and struck
with a lead pipe a man whom he saw talking to his wife inside their house. When he was already incarcerated,
he learned that he was being charged with murder and rape.

When arraigned, appellant pleaded not guilty to both charges. The two cases were thereafter tried jointly
because they arose from the same incident.

Charges: Murder of Jennifer Patawaran-Rosal and Rape of AAA before the RTC Branch 11, Malolos, Bulacan
RTC: Found appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the separate crimes of Murder and Rape
CA: Affirmed trial courts decision

RULING:
WON the trial court erred in finding appellant guilty of the separate crimes of Murder and Rape.
YES. The facts alleged and proven clearly show that the crime committed by appellant is rape with homicide,
a special complex crime provided under Article 266-B, paragraph 5 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended
by R.A. No. 8353.

Where the law provides a single penalty for two or more component offenses, the resulting crime is called a
special complex crime. In a special complex crime, the prosecution must necessarily prove each of the
component offenses with the same precision that would be necessary if they were made the subject of
separate complaints. A special complex crime, or more properly, a composite crime, has its own definition and special
penalty in the Revised Penal Code, as amended. Composite crimes are neither of the same legal basis as nor subject to
the rules on complex crimes in Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code, since they do not consist of a single act giving
rise to two or more grave or less grave felonies [compound crimes] nor do they involve an offense being a
necessary means to commit another [complex crime proper]. However, just like the regular complex crimes, only a
single penalty is imposed for each of such composite crimes although composed of two or more offenses.

Article 266-B of the Revised Penal Code, as amended, provides only a single penalty of death for the
composite acts of rape and the killing (homicide) committed by reason or on the occasion of the rape.
Considering that the prosecution in this case was able to prove both the rape of AAA and the killing of Jennifer
both perpetrated by appellant, he is liable for rape with homicide under the abovementioned provision. There is
no doubt that appellant killed Jennifer to prevent her from aiding AAA or calling for help once she is able to run
away, and also to silence her completely so she may not witness the rape of AAA, the original intent of
appellant. His carnal desire having been satiated, appellant purposely covered AAAs body with grass, as he did
earlier with Jennifers body, so that it may not be easily noticed or seen by passersby. Appellant indeed thought
that the savage blows he had inflicted on AAA were enough to cause her death as with Jennifer. But AAA
survived and appellants barbaric deeds were soon enough discovered.

The facts established showed that the constitutive elements of rape with homicide were consummated, and it is
immaterial that the person killed in this case is someone other than the woman victim of the rape . In the special
complex crime of rape with homicide, the term homicide is to be understood in its generic sense, and includes
murder and slight physical injuries committed by reason or on occasion of the rape . Hence, even if any or all of
the circumstances (treachery, abuse of superior strength and evident premeditation) alleged in the information
have been duly established by the prosecution, the same would not qualify the killing to murder and the crime
committed by appellant is still rape with homicide. As in the case of robbery with homicide, the aggravating
circumstance of treachery is to be considered as a generic aggravating circumstance only. There is no special
complex crime of rape with murder under the Revised Penal Code. Here, treachery forms part of the
circumstances proven concerning the actual commission of the complex crime. Logically it could not qualify the
homicide to murder but, as generic aggravating circumstance, it helps determine the penalty to be imposed.

Abuse of superior strength


The aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength is considered whenever the aggressor purposely
used excessive force that is out of proportion to the means of defense available to the person attacked. In this
case, as personally witnessed by AAA, appellant struck Jennifer in the head with a lead pipe then stabbed her
repeatedly until she was dead. Clearly, the manner by which appellant had brutally slain Jennifer with a lethal
weapon, by first hitting her in the head with a lead pipe to render her defenseless and vulnerable before
stabbing her repeatedly, unmistakably showed that appellant intentionally used excessive force out of
proportion to the means of defense available to his unarmed victim. It has long been established that an attack
made by a man with a deadly weapon upon an unarmed and defenseless woman constitutes the circumstance
of abuse of that superiority which his sex and the weapon used in the act afforded him, and from which the
woman was unable to defend herself.

Abuse of superior strength in this case therefore is merely a generic aggravating circumstance to be
considered in the imposition of the penalty. The penalty provided in Article 266-B of the Revised Penal Code,
as amended, is death. However, in view of the passage on June 24, 2006 of R.A. No. 9346, entitled An Act
Prohibiting the Imposition of the Death Penalty in the Philippines, the Court is mandated to impose on the
appellant the penalty of reclusion perpetua without eligibility for parole.

N.B. WON prosecution witness AAAs testimonies were credible.


YES. Jurisprudence has decreed that the issue of credibility of witnesses is a question best addressed to the
province of the trial court because of its unique position of having observed that elusive and incommunicable
evidence of the witnesses deportment on the stand while testifying which opportunity is denied to the appellate
courts and absent any substantial reason which would justify the reversal of the trial courts assessments and
conclusions, the reviewing court is generally bound by the formers findings, particularly when no significant
facts and circumstances are shown to have been overlooked or disregarded which when considered would
have affected the outcome of the case. This rule is even more stringently applied if the appellate court
concurred with the trial court.

Here, both the trial and appellate courts gave credence and full probative weight to the testimony of AAA, the
lone eyewitness to Jennifers killing and was herself brutally attacked by appellant who also raped her.
On the other hand, appellant merely interposed the defense of denial and alibi. He claimed that at the time of
the incident, he was at his house with his children and nephew cooking dinner. His defense, however, cannot
prevail over the straightforward and credible testimony of AAA who positively identified him as the perpetrator of
the murder and rape. Time and again, we have held that positive identification of the accused, when categorical
and consistent and without any showing of ill motive on the part of the eyewitness testifying, should prevail over
the alibi and denial of the appellant whose testimony is not substantiated by clear and convincing evidence. In
fact, during his cross-examination, appellant admitted that his house was more or less only 100 meters from
the crime scene. Thus, his defense of alibi is not worthy of any credit for the added reason that he has not
shown that it was physically impossible for him to be at the scene of the crime at the time of its commission.
Thus we have ruled that a medical examination of the victim, as well as the medical certificate, is merely
corroborative in character and is not an indispensable element for conviction in rape. What is important is that
the testimony of private complainant about the incident is clear, unequivocal and credible, as what we find in
this case.

N.B. Exemplary Damages


The aggravating/qualifying circumstances of abuse of superior strength and use of deadly weapon have greater
relevance insofar as the civil aspect of this case is concerned. Articles 2229 and 2230 of the Civil Code provide:
Art. 2229. Exemplary or corrective damages are imposed, by way of example or correction for
the public good, in addition to the moral, temperate, liquidated or compensatory damages.

Art. 2230. In criminal offenses, exemplary damages as a part of the civil liability may be
imposed when the crime was committed with one or more aggravating circumstances. Such
damages are separate and distinct from fines and shall be paid to the offended party.

In view of the presence of abuse of superior strength in the killing of Jennifer, her heirs are entitled to
exemplary damages pursuant to Article 2230. With respect to the rape committed against AAA, Article 266-B of
the Revised Penal Code, as amended, provides that a man who shall have carnal knowledge of a woman
through force, threat or intimidation under Article 266-A (a), whenever such rape is committed with the use of a
deadly weapon or by two or more persons, the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death. Since the use of a
deadly weapon raises the penalty for the rape, this circumstance would justify the award of exemplary
damages to the offended party (AAA) also in accordance with Article 2230. Article 266-B likewise provides for
the imposition of death penalty if the crime of rape is committed with any of the aggravating/qualifying
circumstances enumerated therein. Among these circumstances is minority of the victim and her relationship to
the offender.

The failure of the prosecution to allege in the information AAAs relationship to appellant will not bar the
consideration of the said circumstance in the determination of his civil liability. In any case, even without the
attendance of aggravating circumstances, exemplary damages may still be awarded where the circumstances
of the case show the highly reprehensible or outrageous conduct of the offender. In this case, the brutal
manner by which appellant carried out his lustful design against his niece-in-law who never had an inkling that
her own uncle would do any harm to her and her friend, justified the award of exemplary damages. Such
vicious assault was made even more reprehensible as it also victimized Jennifer, who sustained more stab
wounds and beatings, causing her violent death. Article 2229 of the Civil Code allows the award of exemplary
damages in order to deter the commission of similar acts and to allow the courts to forestall behavior that would
pose grave and deleterious consequences to society.

5. (TUTAAN)

People Vs. Villaflores 669 SCRA 365 (2012)

FACTS:
Marita(victim), was only four years and eight months old. She had been playing at the rear of their residence
when Julia, her mother, first noticed her missing from home. the next day, Manito reported to the police that
Marita was missing. In her desperation, Julia sought out a clairvoyant (manghuhula) , and the latter hinted that
Marita might be found only five houses away from their own. Following the clairvoyants direction, they found
Maritas lifeless body inside the comfort room of an abandoned house about five structures away from their own
house. She was covered with a blue sack with her face bloodied and her body soaked to the skin. He found a
yellow sack under her head and a white rope around her neck about 2 and a half feet long and the diameter,
about the size of his middle finger. (blue sack was used to cover the face of the child while the yellow sack was
at the back of the victim.) She had been tortured and strangled till death. The ensuing police investigation led to
two witnesses, Aldrin Bautista and Jovy Solidum, who indicated that Villaflores might be the culprit who had
raped and killed Marita. They narrated that at about 10:00 oclock in the morning of July 2, 1999, they saw
Edmundo Villaflores, known in the neighborhood by his Batman tag and a neighbor of the [victims family],
leading Marita by the hand (umakay sa bata). At about noon time they were at Batmans house where they
used shabu for a while. Both Aldrin and Jovie are drug users. While in Batmans place, although he did not see
Marita, Jovie presumed that Batman was hiding the child at the back of the house. Jovie related that about 3:00
oclock in the afternoon of the same day, he heard cries of a child as he passed by the house of Batman
(Narinig ko pong umiiyak ang batang babae at umuungol). At about 7:00 oclock in the evening, Jovie saw again
Batman carrying a yellow sack towards a vacant house. He thought that the child must have been in the sack
because it appeared heavy. It was the sack that he saw earlier in the house of Batman. Physician reported that
the cause of death is asphyxia by strangulation with rope.

Charge: rape with homicide


RTC: same
SC: guilty of rape with homicide, subject to the following MODIFICATIONS, namely: (a) that he shall
suffer reclusion perpetua without eligibility for parole under Act No. 4103 (Indeterminate Sentence Law)

ISSUE:
1. Nature of rape with homicide as composite crime, exlained.
2. WON same was proven beyond reasonable doubt?

HELD:
1.The felony of rape with homicide is a composite crime. A composite crime, also known as a special complex
crime, is composed of two or more crimes that the law treats as a single indivisible and unique offense for
being the product of a single criminal impulse. It is a specific crime with a specific penalty provided by law, and
differs from a compound or complex crime under Article 48 of the RPC.

There are distinctions between a composite crime, on the one hand, and a complex or compound crime under
Article 48, supra, on the other hand. In a composite crime, the composition of the offenses is fixed by law; in a
complex or compound crime, the combination of the offenses is not specified but generalized, that is, grave
and/or less grave, or one offense being the necessary means to commit the other. For a composite crime, the
penalty for the specified combination of crimes is specific; for a complex or compound crime, the penalty is that
corresponding to the most serious offense, to be imposed in the maximum period. A light felony that
accompanies a composite crime is absorbed; a light felony that accompanies the commission of a complex or
compound crime may be the subject of a separate information.

Republic Act No. 8353 (Anti-Rape Law of 1997) pertinently provides:

Article 266-A. Rape; When and How Committed. Rape is committed

1) By a man who have carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the following
circumstances:

a) Through force, threat, or intimidation;


b) When the offended party is deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious;
c) By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse of authority; and
d) When the offended party is under twelve (12) years of age or is demented, even though none
of the circumstance mentioned above be present.
xxx

Article 266-B. Penalties. Rape under paragraph 1 of the next preceding article shall be
punished by reclusion perpetua.
xxx
When the rape is attempted and a homicide is committed by reason or on the
occasion thereof, the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death.

When by reason or on the occasion of the rape, homicide is committed, the penalty
shall be death.
xxx

The law on rape quoted herein thus defines and sets forth the composite crimes of attempted rape with
homicide and rape with homicide. In both composite crimes, the homicide is committed by reason or on the
occasion of rape. As can be noted, each of said composite crimes is punished with a single penalty, the former
with reclusion perpetuato death, and the latter with death. The phrases by reason of the rape and on the
occasion of the rape are crucial in determining whether the crime is a composite crime or a complex or
compound crime. The phrase by reason of the rape obviously conveys the notion that the killing is due to the
rape, the offense the offender originally designed to commit. The victim of the rape is also the victim of the
killing. The indivisibility of the homicide and the rape (attempted or consummated) is clear and admits of no
doubt. In contrast, the import of the phrase on the occasion of the rape may not be as easy to determine. To
understand what homicide may be covered by the phrase on the occasion of the rape, a resort to the meaning
the framers of the law intended to convey thereby is helpful. Indeed, during the floor deliberations of the Senate
on Republic Act No. 8353, the legislative intent on the import of the phrase on the occasion of the rape to refer
to a killing that occurs immediately before or after, or during the commission itself of the attempted or
consummated rape, where the victim of the homicide may be a person other than the rape victim herself for as
long as the killing is linked to the rape

2. YES. Elements of rape and homicide: (a) that Villaflores had carnal knowledge of Marita; (b) that he
consummated the carnal knowledge without the consent of Marita; and (c) that he killed Marita by reason of the
rape.Under Article 266-A, supra, rape is always committed when the accused has carnal knowledge of a
female under 12 years of age. The crime is commonly called statutory rape, because a female of that age is
deemed incapable of giving consent to the carnal knowledge.

We have often conceded the difficulty of proving the commission of rape when only the victim is left to testify on
the circumstances of its commission. The difficulty heightens and complicates when the crime is rape with
homicide, because there may usually be no living witnesses if the rape victim is herself killed. Yet, the situation
is not always hopeless for the State, for the Rules of Court also allows circumstantial evidence to establish the
commission of the crime as well as the identity of the culprit. Direct evidence proves a fact in issue directly
without any reasoning or inferences being drawn on the part of the factfinder; in contrast, circumstantial
evidence indirectly proves a fact in issue, such that the factfinder must draw an inference or reason from
circumstantial evidence.[22] To be clear, then, circumstantial evidence may be resorted to when to insist on
direct testimony would ultimately lead to setting a felon free. The Rules of Court makes no distinction between
direct evidence of a fact and evidence of circumstances from which the existence of a fact may be inferred;
hence, no greater degree of certainty is required when the evidence is circumstantial than when it is direct. In
either case, the trier of fact must be convinced beyond a reasonable doubt of the guilt of the accused. [24] Nor
has the quantity of circumstances sufficient to convict an accused been fixed as to be reduced into some
definite standard to be followed in every instance.

Both the RTC and the CA considered several circumstances, which when appreciated together and not piece
by piece, according to the CA, were seen as strands which create a pattern when interwoven, and formed an
unbroken chain that led to the reasonable conclusion that Villaflores, to the exclusion of all others, was guilty
of rape with homicide. We concur with the RTC and the CA. "the testimonies of Solidum and Bautista attesting
to Villaflores as the person they had seen holding Marita by the hand going towards the abandoned house
before the victim went missing, the hearing by Solidum of moaning and crying of a child from within Villaflores
house, and the tracing to Villaflores of the yellow sack and the white rope found at the crime scene sufficiently
linked Villaflores to the crime."

6. (VERGARA)

ARTICLE 48. A delito compuesto, in contrast, arises from a single physical act resulting in
simultaneous (or almost simultaneous) injury to two (2) or more victims.
People vs. Mision
G.R. No. 63480. February 26, 1991
FELICIANO, J.:

FACTS: At noontime on October 24, 1978, the accused sought to buy drinks on credit from Luciana
Dagohoy at Esperanza, Masbate. Luciana Dagohoy had a small store adjacent to her house. She
refused the accused. At about 7:30 oclock in the evening of said day, as Lelith (Mercy) Dagohoy, a
niece of Luciana, was about to close the door of the store for the night, the accused pushed it open.
Once inside, he immediately stabbed Lelith on her left shoulder. The latter fell down. Thereafter, the
accused approached Luciana, who was sitting some three (3) meters away, and likewise stabbed her,
hitting her on the right breast. When Lelith saw her aunt being stabbed, she became unconscious.
Meanwhile the accused fled. He used a knife eight (8) inches long.
CFI- complex crime of murder with frustrated murder

ISSUE: Whether complex crime?

HELD: NO.
The trial court characterized the acts of the appellant as a delito compuesto, the complex crime
defined under the first clause of Article 48. In the present case, however, the evidence established
that appellant inflicted a stab wound on each of the two (2) victims who were separated from each
other by a distance of three (3) meters. There were, in other words, two (2) distinct acts, directed at
two (2) different victims successively, separated from each other by a brief but discernible interval of
time and space. A delito compuesto, in contrast, arises from a single physical act resulting in
simultaneous (or almost simultaneous) injury to two (2) or more victims. The two (2) distinct offenses
here having arisen from two (2) distinct physical acts, such offenses cannot be characterized as
constituting a delito compuesto.

7. (BUSINE)

CPP/NPA
People vs. Asuncion
G.R. No.s 83837-42, April 22, 1992
Justice Nocon

FACTS:

The facts as presented by the prosecution reveal that sometime in February 1988, elements of the
Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines apprehended the private respondents in
separate operations.

Various ammunitions, firearms, and explosives were found in their possession, while subsequent
searches in their respective hide-outs resulted in the confiscation of several subversive materials,
including documents showing that they are ranking members of the Communist Party of the
Philippines/New People's Army, or are mere members.

Private respondents, in their motion to quash, argued that the filing of two (2) separate information for
each of the accused violates the rule on double jeopardy, and that there being only a single criminal
intent, the other offense of illegal possession of firearms, ammunition and explosives should be absorbed
in the charge of violation of R.A. 1700, following the doctrine in People v. Hernandez.
RTC: granted motion to quash

Applying by analogy the doctrine laid down in the case of People v. Hernandez (99 Phil. 515), the
possession of firearms, ammunition and explosives to which all the accused are charged before this Court
is a constitutive ingredient of the crime of subversion and, hence, absorbed by the same and cannot be
punished separately. Deadly weapons are needed and necessary to generate the kind of force and
violence to accomplish the purpose of subversion. As pointed out by Atty. Poncevic Ceballos, counsel for
the accused, the elements of force, violence and other illegal means mentioned in the law (R.A., 1700 as
amended), may be done with the use of violence, explosives and ammunition or the possession thereof.

Private respondents do not dispute the fact that rebellion is distinct from subversion. However, they want
to adopt by analogy existing jurisprudence on rebellion to subversion on the theory that both crimes are
political offenses intended to destabilize and overthrow the government with the use of force, violence or
other illegal means.

ISSUE: Whether the crime of illegal possession of firearms, ammunition and explosives, punishable
under P.D. 1866, is absorbed by the crime of subversion, i.e., membership in a subversive organization,
punishable under R.A. 1700, as amended.

RULING:
NO. Violation of Republic Act No. 1700, or subversion, as it is more commonly called, is a crime distinct
from that of actual rebellion. The crime of rebellion is committed by rising publicly and taking up arms
against the Government for any of the purposes specified in Article 134 of the Revised Penal Code; while
the Anti-Subversion Act (Republic Act No. 1700) punishes affiliation or membership in a subversive
organization as defined therein. In rebellion, there must be a public uprising and taking of arms against
the Government; whereas, in subversion, mere membership in a subversive association is sufficient and
the taking up of arms by a member of a subversive organization against the Government is but a
circumstance which raises the penalty to be imposed upon the offender.

Furthermore, in the case of Buscayno vs. Military Commissions, 12 this Court said that subversion, like
treason, is a crime against national security, while rebellion is a crime against public order. Rising publicly
and taking arms against the Government is the very element of the crime of rebellion. 13 On the other
hand, R.A. 1700 was enacted to outlaw the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), other similar
associations and its successors because their existence and activities constitute a clear, present and
grave danger to national security.

The first Whereas clause of R.A. 1700 states that the CPP is an organized conspiracy to overthrow the
Government, not only by force and violence but also by deceit, subversion and other illegal means. This is
a recognition that subversive acts do not only constitute force and violence (contra to the arguments of
private respondents), but may partake of other forms as well. One may in fact be guilty of subversion by
authoring subversive materials, where force and violence is neither necessary or indispensable.

Undeniably, it is easier to prove that a person has unlawfully possessed a firearm and/or ammunition
under P.D. 1866 than to establish that he had knowingly, willfully and by overt acts affiliated himself with,
became or remained a member of the Communist Party of the Philippines and/or its successor or of any
subversive organization under R.A. 1700, as conviction under the latter "requires that membership must
be knowing or active, with specific intent to further the illegal objectives of the Party" (quoting from People
v. Ferrer, supra).

However, that the same act may be penalized under two different statutes with different penalties, even if
considered highly advantageous to the prosecution and onerous to the accused, will not necessarily call
for the invalidation of the third paragraph of Section 1 of P.D. 1866 which provides for the higher penalty.

We find this petition meritorious and the resolution of the trial court dated May 4, 1988 quashing the
information for violation of PD 1866 is hereby reversed and the information reinstated.

8. (CERDA)

Article 48 Distinction should be made as to when the crimes of Estafa and Falsification will constitute
as one complex crime and when they are considered as two separate offenses

ANNA LERIMA PATULA v. PEOPLE


G.R. No. 164457, April 11, 2012

FACTS:
Petitioner was an employee of Footlucker's, starting as a saleslady in 1996 until she became a sales
representative. And as a sales representative she was authorized to take orders from wholesale customers
coming from different towns, collect payments from them, she could issue and sign official receipts of
Footlucker's for the payments, which she would then remit, and she would then submit the receipts for the
payments for tallying and reconciliation. According to the testimony of Lamberto Go, branch manager of
Footluckers Inc

At first her volume of sales was quite high, but later on dropped, leading him to confront her.He summoned the
accounting clerk to verify the accounting clerk discovered erasures on some collection receipts so he decided
to subject her to an audit by company auditor Karen Guivencan. He also learned from a customer of
petitioner's that the customer's outstanding balance had already been fully paid although that balance
appeared unpaid in Footlucker's records. One night later on, petitioner and her parents went to his house to
deny having misappropriated any money of Footlucker's and to plead for him not to push through with a case
against her, promising to settle her account on a monthly basis; and that she did not settle after that, but
stopped reporting to work.

According to the Accounting Clerk Karen Guivencan


The amounts appearing on the original copies of receipts in the possession of around 50 ustomers varied from
the amounts written on the duplicate copies of the receipts petitioner submitted to the office; that upon
completing her audit, she submitted to Go a written report denominated as List of Customers Covered by
Saleswoman LERIMA PATULA w/ Differences in Records as per Audit Duly Verified March 16-20, 1997
marked as Exhibit A; and that based on the report, petitioner had misappropriated the total amount of
P131,286.92.

Prosecution marked the ledgers of petitioner's various customers allegedly with discrepancies as Exhibits B to
YY and their derivatives - the originals and duplicates of the receipts supposedly executed and issued by
petitioner. They formally offered these documents.

RTCs RULING
Inasmuch as petitioner had opted not to present evidence for her defense the Prosecution's evidence
remained unrefuted and uncontroverted, rendered its decision finding petitioner guilty of estafa.

Contention of Petitioner (Patula)


- while the charge against her is estafa under Art. 315, par. 1 (b) of the Revised Penal Code, the evidence
presented against her and upon which her conviction was based, was falsification, an offense not alleged or
included in the Information under which she was arraigned and pleaded not guilty.
- the testimony of Karen Guivencan should therefore not be considered at all as it tended to prove an offense
not charged or included in the [i]nformation and would violate [the] accused's constitutional and statutory right
to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against her.

ISSUE:
Whether the accused or any accused for that matter, charged of Estafa under ART. 315, PAR. 1 (B) OF THE
REVISED PENAL CODE can be convicted upon or by evidence of Falsification which is not even alleged in
theinformation.

HELD:
The Court holds that there is no necessity of alleging the falsification in the Information as it is not an element
of the crime charged.
Elements of Estafa
The elements of the offense charged were as follows:
(a)That the offender received money, goods or other personal property in trust, or on commission, or for
administration, or under any other obligation involving the duty to make delivery of, or to return, the same;
(b) That the offender misappropriated or converted such money, goods or other personal property, or denied his
part in its receipt;
(c) That the misappropriation or conversion or denial was to the prejudice of another; and
(d) That the offended party made a demand on the offender for the delivery or return of such money, goods or
other personal property.

Distinction should be made as to when the crimes of Estafa and Falsification will constitute as one
complex crime and when they are considered as two separate offenses. The complex crime of Estafa
Through Falsification of Documents is committed when one has to falsify certain documents to be able to
obtain money or goods from another person. In other words, the falsification is a necessary means of
committing estafa. However, if the falsification is committed to conceal the misappropriation, two separate
offenses of estafa and falsification are committed.

In the instant case, when accused collected payments from the customers, said collection which was in her
possession was at her disposal. The falsified or erroneous entries which she made on the duplicate copies of
the receipts were contrived to conceal some amount of her collection which she did not remit to the company.
Hence, there are actually two separate offenses and since what was charged is estafa, falsification need not be
alleged.
However, the Court SETS ASIDE AND REVERSES the decision convicting ANNA LERIMA PATULA of
estafa as charged, and ACQUITS her because of failure of the Prosecution to prove her guilt beyond
reasonable doubt, (Testimonial and documentary evidence,being hearsay, did not prove petitioner's guilt
beyond reasonable doubt, Lack of their proper authentication rendered Exhibits B to YY and their
derivatives inadmissible as judicial evidence, No reliable evidence on damage) without prejudice to a civil
action brought against her for the recovery of any amount still owing in favor of Footlucker's Chain of Stores,
Inc.

9. (CHUA)
ARTICLE 48 PENALTY FOR COMPLEX CRIME. There can be only one complex crime of forcible
abduction with rape committed against the same victimthe crime of forcible abduction is necessary
only for the first rape and the subsequent rape can no longer be considered as a separate instance
thereof.

PEOPLE vs. DANILO CARAANG, VIRGILIO CANLAS JR., MANNY BELAGOT (at large), ROLANDO
REBOTA (at large) and four JOHN DOES (at large)
G.R. Nos. 148424-27 , December 11, 2003
PANGANIBAN, J.

FACTS:
Version of the Prosecution
About 11 oclock on the night of November 10, 1990, the group of Vanelyn Flores, Lorna Salazar, Angeline
Flores, Jona Ampil, Gina Canzon, Froilan Galamay, Jimmy Pascual and Tirso Ganzon were on their way home
to Sitio Abibeg, Gen. Luna, Carranglan, Nueva Ecija. The group had just attended a bangsal-bangsal or a pre-
nuptial dance at Barangay Dipaan, Car[r]anglan, Nueva Ecija. The moon [had] just begun to rise, and the road
they were traversing was quite dark. Reaching the boundary of Abibeg and Dipaan, the group was accosted by
two (2) armed men. Brandishing their guns, the men ordered the group to follow them. The two (2) armed men
wore bonnets. However, Vanelyn Flores recognized one of them as appellant Danilo Caraang, having known
him for a long time since they were neighbors in the same barangay and because of the peculiar way he
walked and stood. Jimmy Pascual likewise recognized the two armed men as appellant Danilo Caraang and
Virgilio Canlas.The group was forced to walk through rice paddies till they reached an uninhabited and grassy
place near a creek or parang, approximately 500 meters away from the place where they were waylaid. Upon
reaching the parang, the armed men ordered the female members of the group to sit down while the male
members were ordered to lie on the ground face down. Vanelyn Flores was the first female removed from the
group by appellant. She knew that it was appellant who grabbed her hand and who pulled her to a nearby
creek about 50 meters away. There, Vanelyn saw another man waiting. All of a sudden, appellant poked his
gun on Vanelyns temple and ordered her to remove her pants. Vanelyn became terrified and cried. Appellant
forced her to lie down on the ground. He repeated his order that she remove her pants. Vanelyn, however,
refused. This prompted appellants companion to grab both of Vanelyns hands. As Vanelyn was immobilized,
appellant succeeded in removing her pants and underwear. Thereafter, appellant removed his pants, mounted
Vanelyn and had sexual intercourse with her. Vanelyn felt excruciating pain. By then, the place was well-
illuminated by moonlight. The moment appellant removed his bonnet, Vanelyn saw that her rapist was indeed
appellant Danilo Caraang. Vanelyn was sexually abused by appellant for more than 15 minutes, after which she
was returned to their group.

After an hour, Vanelyn was again forcibly brought by appellant to the nearby creek. Vanelyn was made to lie
down by appellant who poked his gun at her. Petrified with fear, Vanelyn could not resist as appellants
companion removed her underwear and her pants. Then appellants companion mounted her and sexually
abused her. Vanelyn again cried because of terrible pain. After appellants companion had satisfied his lust,
appellant returned Vanelyn to the group. He approached Lorna Salazar and forced her to go with him.

Lorna Salazar was first blindfolded and then brought to a place away from the group. She was turned over to a
man who removed the cover from her eyes. Lorna saw [that] the man [was] wearing a bonnet. The man
ordered Lorna to remove her pants but she fought back. Thus, he kicked Lorna hard in the abdomen which
caused her to lose consciousness. When she regained consciousness, Lorna felt weak and dizzy. She also
saw that she was naked. The man who raped her ordered her to put on her pants. Thereafter, she was returned
back to the group. Subsequently, two other companions of appellant, who were also armed, took Lorna Salazar
away from the group. They also wanted to rape her. However, as the men were starting to remove her clothes,
Lorna cried and pleaded for mercy. The two men relented. One of them asked Lorna to give him a kiss mark
instead. As he prepared to be kissed, the man removed his bonnet. Lorna was able to identify him as Manny
Belagot. Then she was returned to the group.
Around 4 oclock in the morning, the group was released at the place where they were abducted. Before
departing, the armed men threatened the group thus pag nagsumbong kayo, papatayin naming kayo lahat.
Vanelyn Flores and her sister Angeline, together with Lorna Salazar, arrived at their house crying. They
narrated to Vanelyns parents all about the incident.

Immediately, Vanelyn was brought by her parents to San Jose City, where she was examined by Dr. Rolando
Valencia. Dr. Valencia. Lorna Salazar was medically examined by Dr. Restituto Duran.
CHARGE: 4 counts of rape with forcible abduction:
1. 2 information for Abduction with lewd design and by means of force and intimidation of Vanelyn Flores
to an uninhabited grassy upland five hundred (500) meters away;
2. 2 information for Abduction with lewd design and by means of force and intimidation of Lorna Salazar
to an uninhabited grassy upland five hundred (500) meters away.
The trial court issued a Warrant of Arrest against all the accused. Appellant and Canlas Jr. were arrested and
detained, but all the others remained at large. On arraignment, the two pleaded not guilty. Since there were
common witnesses and the acts complained of arose from the same incident, the cases were consolidated and
tried jointly.

Version of the Defense


CARAANG denies the accusations against him. He maintains that he is innocent and that he was not at the
place of the incident and that he was sick at that time.

DECISION OF THE RTC: The RTC convicted Danilo Caraang, together with Virgilio Canlas Jr., of the
complex crime of abduction with rape, two counts of rape and one count of acts of lasciviousness.
They were sentenced to reclusion perpetua for each of the first three crimes; and imprisonment of four
(4) years, two (2) months, one (1) day to six (6) years of prision correccional for the last.
The court a quo found that only one act of abduction had been committed by all the accused. It added that the
crafty way in which they made the victims go with them revealed the lewd intention of the abduction. That the
former had intended to have carnal knowledge of the latter from the very beginning was further held by the
lower court. The rapes were thus complexed with the crime of abduction. However, the RTC held that the
subsequent instances of rape committed were separate and distinct counts thereof. As to the fourth criminal
Complaint, it found appellant guilty only of acts of lasciviousness, since no carnal knowledge had occurred.
Hence, this appeal.

ISSUES:
1. Whether or not the trial court properly charged the accused with complex crime of abduction with
rape, two counts of rape and one count of acts of lasciviousness.
2. Whether or not the trial court erred in finding that there was conspiracy. NO
3. Whether or not the trial court erred in finding that there was positive identification of Caraang as
the rapist; NO
4. Whether or not the trial court erred in not appreciating the existence of other facts and
circumstances which are of weight and substance in favor of the accused-appellant which shows
that there is reasonable doubt; NO
5. Whether or not the evidence against the accused did not fulfill the test of moral certainty and is not
sufficient for conviction; NO
6. Whether or not there is double jeopardy. NO
HELD:
1. One Complex Crime Against Each Victim- Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code governs complex
crimes as follows: When a single act constitutes two or more grave or less grave felonies, or when an
offense is a necessary means for committing the other, the penalty for the most serious crime shall be
imposed, the same to be applied in its maximum period. However, there can be only one complex crime of
forcible abduction with rape committed against each victim. The crime of forcible abduction was necessary
only for the first rape. After the complex crime had already been consummated, the subsequent rape can
no longer be considered as a separate instance thereof. That is, it should be detached from, and
considered independently of, the forcible abduction. Hence, any subsequent rape of the same victim is
simply rape and can no longer be considered as a separate complex crime of forcible abduction with rape.
Penalty for the More Serious Crime - As earlier adverted to, the forcible abduction was necessary for the
succeeding rape of each victim. Consequently, for the complex crime of forcible abduction with rape, the
penalty for the rape -- which is the more serious crime -- shall be imposed in its maximum period. At the
time of the commission of the crime, the applicable penalty for rape committed by two or more persons was
reclusion perpetua to death. Since the rape was committed by two or more persons -- a fact duly alleged in
the Information and proven in court -- it should have warranted the imposition of the death penalty.
However, appellant committed the crime of forcible abduction with rape on November 10, 1990 -- before
the passage of Republic Act 7659 or the Death Penalty Law, which took effect on December 31, 1993.
Thus, the trial court correctly ruled that the penalty that could be imposed was reclusion perpetua.
As regards the act of rape committed against Flores, appellant is likewise sentenced to reclusion perpetua.
This separate act of rape, directly and successively committed against her by his co-accused, was the only
one remaining for which he may be further held liable. All told, three terms of reclusion perpetua should
be imposed upon him.
2. Proof of Conspiracy - He claims that the RTC erred in finding conspiracy, since the prosecution had
likewise failed to prove that there was prior agreement among the accused.

SC: We disagree. There is no doubt that appellant and his co-accused acted in conspiracy, as seen
through their concerted actions in abducting the victims with lewd design and later on raping them.
Direct proof is not essential to establish conspiracy; which may be inferred from the acts of the assailants
before, during and after the commission of the crime. In a conspiracy, it is not necessary to show that all the
conspirators actually committed all the elements of the crime charged; what is important is that all of them
performed specific acts with such closeness and coordination as to indicate an unmistakably common purpose
or design to commit the crime. Thus, the act of one becomes the act of all, and each of them will thereby be
deemed equally guilty of all the crimes committed. It must be shown that each co-accused cooperated in the
commission of the offense -- either morally through advice, encouragement or agreement; or materially through
external acts indicating a manifest intent of supplying aid in the efficacious perpetration of the crime. In this
case, the testimonies of the victims and their witnesses, as well as all other pieces of evidence presented
indubitably established the concerted design of all the accused to abduct the group forcibly and to rape its
female members.

The common purpose of the accused was manifestly shown by the deliberate and methodical manner in which
the crimes were committed. The victims were first tricked into going with appellant. When they arrived at a
secluded place, the women were ordered to line up, while their male companions were told to lie on their
stomachs. According to the victims, more men were already waiting at the place where the former were
brought, a fact that only shows that all the accused indeed knew what was going to happen. Thereafter the
women were brought, one at a time, to the place where the rapes were to occur. The manner in which the
crimes were committed points to no other conclusion than that all the accused had knowledge of the criminal
design. In fact, appellant himself committed the first act of rape on Flores. Moreover, he was an indispensable
participant in the second act thereof. He was the one who brought her to his companions who took turns in
raping her,76 while he pointed a gun at her. Holding the victim and threatening her with a gun while another was
raping her was more than sufficient to show indubitably a common criminal design.

After appellant had satisfied his own lust and later aided his companion in raping Flores, the evidence indicates
that he and his co-accused intended to commit rape again -- which they actually accomplished -- this time on
Salazar. He was also involved in her forcible abduction with rape, as it was again he who took her away from
her group and handed her over to one of his co-accused. The pattern of the rapes committed and the
indispensable role of appellant therein is clear. Any intimation that he had nothing to do with them would be
nothing less than unbelievable. In view of the presence of conspiracy, all the co-accused bear equal
responsibility.
The finding of conspiracy is significant, because it changes the criminal liability of all the accused and makes
them answerable as co-principals regardless of the degree of their participation in the crime. Their liability
becomes collective, with each participant deemed equally responsible for the acts of the others. To reiterate,
conspiracy arises when two or more persons come to an agreement concerning the commission of a felony
and decide to commit it. It comes to life at the very instant the plotters agree, expressly or impliedly, to commit
the felony and forthwith to pursue it actually. As in this case, conspiracy is proved by concerted acts or other
forms of evidence indicative of actual cooperation -- a common purpose or design, as well as a concurrence of
sentiments to commit the felony and to pursue it actually.

The two elements of forcible abduction, as defined in Article 342 of the Revised Penal Code, are as follows: (1)
taking a woman against her will and (2) doing so with lewd designs. This complex crime occurs when there is
carnal knowledge of the abducted woman under any of the circumstances mentioned earlier when force or
intimidation is used; when the woman is deprived of reason or is otherwise unconscious; and when the woman
is under twelve years of age or is demented. All told, the prosecution sufficiently proved the elements of forcible
abduction -- the taking of the victims against their will with lewd design. As to the first element, although they
voluntarily went with appellant, it was indubitably shown that they did so upon being deceived. According to
their testimonies, he told them that his leader wanted to talk to them, and that no harm would be done to them.
Upon this representation, they went with him. The employment of deception suffices to constitute forcible
abduction. This Court has previously ruled that if the victims consent was obtained through deceit and there
was therefore no valid consent, the crime is forcible abduction, as the deceit may be considered as constructive
force. The second element, lewd design, was established by the actual rapes.

Proceeding to the charges, aside from alleging the necessary elements of the crimes, the prosecution
convincingly established that appellant and his co-accused had conspired, confederated and mutually aided
one another in having carnal knowledge of the victims against the latters will by means of force and
intimidation.

3. Positive Identification - He alleges that Flores could not have positively identified him as one of the
perpetrators of the crimes, because it was nighttime when the incident occurred. He further argues that
she did not directly testify to having seen him; instead, she merely identified him by the way he spoke,
stood and moved.

SC: We disagree. The testimony of Flores was categorical, convincing and unequivocal. According to Flores,
on the night the incident occurred, the place where they were brought was brightly illuminated by the moon.
Thus, she was able to take a good look at and remember the face of appellant. Visibility is indeed a vital factor
in determining whether an eyewitness could have identified the perpetrator of a crime. It is settled that when
conditions of visibility are favorable, and when the witnesses do not appear to be biased, their assertion as to
the identity of the malefactor should normally be accepted. In proper situations, illumination produced by a
kerosene or wick lamp, a flashlight, even moonlight or starlight may be considered sufficient to allow
identification of persons. Under such circumstance, any attack on the credibility of witnesses, based solely on
the ground of insufficiency or absence of illumination, becomes unmeritorious. To be sure, Flores had an
unobstructed view of appellant because of their proximity with each other. Given her familiarity with him, as well
as the illumination provided by the moonlight on that fateful evening -- reasonably sufficient for the identification
of persons -- we doubt if she could have erred in identifying him.
Furthermore, the contention of appellant that Flores did not directly testify that she had seen him is
completely belied by her above-quoted testimony. Although she did mention that she recognized him by
the way he spoke, stood and moved, those qualities were not her only bases for identifying him; she was
also able to see his face during the incident. Besides, even the witnesses presented by appellant could
not exculpate him from criminal liability. If indeed he had witnesses to prove that he did not leave the
house, he should have presented them, so that they could positively testify that he never left their sight.
Instead, he presented the barangay chair, who admitted that she had been too busy during the dance
party to have kept an eye on him throughout the night; and his sister, whom he did not even mention, who
testified that she had been with him at the time.

4. A. Discrepancy Between the Sworn and the Court Testimony - He points to alleged inconsistencies
between her court testimony and her sworn affidavit before the police.

SC: Again, we cannot sustain this contention. Appellants reliance on the affidavit of Flores in order to cast
doubt on her testimony is futile. The Court has consistently ruled that discrepancies between the statements in
an affidavit and those made on the witness stand do not necessarily downgrade the latter. Ex parte affidavits
are usually incomplete, frequently prepared by administering officers, and cast in their language and
understanding of what affiants have said. Almost always, the latter would simply sign such documents after
being read to them. They are products sometimes of partial suggestions and at other times of want of
suggestions and inquiries, without the aid of which witnesses may be unable to recall the connected
circumstances necessary for accurate recollection.

Affidavits are generally subordinate in importance to open-court declarations, because the former are often
executed when the mental faculties of affiants are not in such state as to afford them a fair opportunity to
narrate more extensively the incidents that have transpired. By its very nature and the manner it is taken, an
affidavit can hardly compare with the weight of a testimony given in open court. Likewise, the supposed failure
of eyewitnesses to include some material facts in their affidavits does not in any way diminish the veracity of
their court testimonies. In other words, whenever there is inconsistency between the two, the latter commands
greater weight. We have also repeatedly held that minor disparities do not detract from the essential credibility
of testimonies that are coherent and intrinsically believable on the whole. What is clear is that the responsibility
of appellant for the crime charged was indubitably established by both the sworn statement and the
testimonies..
B. Failure to Immediately File a Complaint with the Police - He cites questionable circumstances that
allegedly create reasonable doubt. He specifically points to the fact that Flores, instead of immediately
filing a complaint with the police, went first to the CAFGU detachment with her group -- supposedly a sign
that she was unsure of the identities of the culprits.
SC: It should be clear that after the crime had been committed against them, they went home and reported
the incident to their parents, then sought medical doctors for physical examination. Going to the CAFGU
detachment was but a logical response of Flores and her group to the incident that happened. They
wanted the culprits to be arrested; because the latter were members of the local CAFGU, naturally, the
former proceeded to that office. Certainly, there was no delay in the filing of a complaint with the police.
When Flores went to the CAFGU detachment, she was able to identify him positively. To be sure, his
assertion that the victims had to go to the CAFGU detachment because they were unsure of the
identities of the culprits was not only unfounded, but also speculative.

5. Physical Evidence - He faults the prosecution for failing to present any bloodied panty, pants or dress
belonging to the victim. Such failure was supposedly fatal for its part, because it did not present any
other physical evidence to prove the rape. Though he concedes that these objects are not essential in
proving rape, he invokes our ruling in People v. Godoy, which is supposedly applicable to the present
controversy. In that case, the deliberate non-presentation of the bloodstained skirt was ruled to have
weakened the cause of the prosecution.
SC: Again, this argument fails to convince us. In Godoy, the testimony of the complainant was inherently
weak, and no other physical evidence was presented by the prosecution to bolster the charge of rape,
except for the medical report which had even negated one of the essential elements of the crime. Hence,
the deliberate non-presentation of the complainants bloodstained skirt was held to "vigorously militate
against the prosecutions cause. In the case before us, the convincing and unwavering testimonies of not
only one victim, but two victims -- taken together with the similarly credible corroborative testimonies of
other witnesses -- leave no room to doubt appellants guilt. Moreover, unlike in Godoy, the medical findings
presented in the present case are sufficient to sustain the charge of rape. The testimony of Dr. Valencia,
coupled with the corresponding Medical Reports, clearly establishes the rape. Thus, the non-presentation
of Flores bloodied underwear, skirt and pants is not indispensable to proving the rape.
Neither was it important for the prosecution to prove that appellant was afflicted with a sexually
transmissible disease that he had passed on to Flores. In the crime of rape, all that has to be proven is
carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the following circumstances: 1) when force, threat or
intimidation is used; 2) when the offended party is deprived of reason or is otherwise unconscious; 3) when
fraudulent machination or grave abuse of authority is employed; or 4) when the offended party is under
twelve years of age or is demented, even though none of the circumstances mentioned above be present.
At most, in rape, the transmission of a sexually transmissible disease to the victim is not an element of the
crime, but an aggravating/qualifying circumstance that has to be proven to sustain conviction.
When the victim cannot testify on the actual commission of the rape because she had been rendered
unconscious before the act was committed, the conviction may be based on circumstantial evidence. Such
evidence is admissible, provided that more than one circumstance is duly proven, and that the totality or
the unbroken chain of the circumstances proven lead to no other logical conclusion than that of the guilt of
the accused.
Other than this bare, passing statement, absolutely no other evidence was presented to prove the charge
of acts of lasciviousness. Salazar did not even testify on the surrounding circumstances of this incident.
Given the utter lack of evidence, we have no other option but to dismiss that charge.

6. No Double Jeopardy
Hence, appellant is guilty of two complex crimes of forcible abduction with rape -- one against Flores and the
other against Salazar. Since there were two victims, the trial court erred in convicting him of only one count of
the complex crime of forcible abduction with rape. There can be no violation of the constitutional right of
appellant against double jeopardy, because the decisive issue here is whether he was convicted of a crime
charged in the Information. A reading of the four separate Informations shows that in each one, he was indeed
charged with forcible abduction with rape. Having been sufficiently informed of the accusations against him, he
can thus be convicted of two counts of the complex crime of forcible abduction with rape, as we have done
here based on the evidence presented.

Moreover, it is settled that when the accused appeals from the sentence of the trial court, they waive their right
to the constitutional safeguard against double jeopardy and throw the whole case open to review by the
appellate court. The latter court is then called upon to render such judgment as law and justice dictate --
whether favorable or unfavorable to them, and whether the issues it resolves have been assigned as errors or
not. Such an appeal confers upon it full jurisdiction over the case and renders it competent to examine the
records, revise the judgment appealed from, increase the penalty, and cite the proper provision of the penal
law.

10. (SANTOS)

People v. Delos Santos

FACTS:

On the early morning of October 5, 1995, at the Maitum Highway in Cagayan de Oro City, a team of PNP
members undergoing a Special Training Course wearing black T-shirts and black short pants were performing
an Endurance Run. They were jogging at the right side of the lane. A speeding Isuzu Elf driven by Glenn with
deliberate intent to kill, taking advantage of his driven motor vehicle, an Isuzu Elf, and with treachery, did then
and there willfully, unlawfully and feloniously kill and inflict mortal wounds from behind in a sudden and
unexpected manner with the use of said vehicle ran into them, in spite of the warning or signals from the other
joggers. . Lemuel and Weldon saw their co-trainees being hit by the said vehicle, falling like dominoes one after
the other. Some were thrown, and others were overrun by the vehicle. The driver did not reduce his speed even
after hitting the first and second columns which resulted to deaths and injuries. The accused surrendered to the
Governor.

PO3 Jose Cabugwas testified that several members of the PNP came to their station and reported that they
had been bumped by a certain vehicle. Immediately after receiving the report, he and two other policemen
proceeded to the traffic scene to conduct an ocular inspection. Only bloodstains and broken particles of the hit-
and-run vehicle remained on the highway. They did not see any brake marks on the highway, which led him to
conclude that the brakes of the vehicle had not been applied. The policemen measured the bloodstains and
found them to be 70 ft. long.

GLENNs version of the events that transpired that evening is as follows:

At about 10:30 p.m. of 4 October 1995, he was asked by his friend Enting Galindez and the latters fellow band
members to provide them with transportation, if possible an Isuzu Forward, that would bring their band
instruments, band utilities and band members from Cagayan de Oro City, to Balingoan. It was the thirteenth
time that Enting had asked such a favor from him. Three of his friends asked to go along, namely, Roldan
Paltonag, Andot Pea, and a certain Akut.[7]

After leaving GLENNs house, the group decided to stop at Celebrity Plaza Restaurant. GLENN saw
his kumpare Danilo Cosin and the latters wife, and joined them at the table. GLENN finished three bottles of
pale pilsen beer. When the Cosin spouses left, GLENN joined his travelling companions at their table. The
group left at 12:00 midnight for Bukidnon. The environment was dark and foggy, with occasional rains. It took
them sometime looking for the Isuzu Forward truck. Finally, they saw the truck in Agusan Canyon. Much to their
disappointment, the said truck had mechanical problems. Hence, GLENN decided to go back to Cagayan de
Oro City to tell Enting that they would use the Isuzu Elf truck instead. [8]

GLENN drove slowly because the road was slippery. The vicinity was dark: there was no moon or star; neither
were there lampposts. At the vicinity of Mambatangan junction, as the Elf was negotiating a left curve going
slightly downward, GLENN saw a very bright and glaring light coming from the opposite direction of the national
highway. GLENN blinked his headlights as a signal for the other driver to switch his headlights from bright to
dim. GLENN switched his own lights from bright to dim and reduced his speed from 80 to 60 kilometers per
hour. It was only when the vehicles were at a distance of 10 to 15 meters from each other that the other cars
headlights were switched from bright to dim. As a result, GLENN found it extremely hard to adjust from high
brightness to sudden darkness.[9]

It was while the truck was still cruising at a speed of 60 km./hr., and immediately after passing the oncoming
vehicle, that GLENN suddenly heard and felt bumping thuds. At the sound of the first bumping thuds, GLENN
put his right foot on the brake pedal. But the impact was so sudden that he was astonished and afraid. He was
trembling and could not see what were being bumped. At the succeeding bumping thuds, he was not able to
pump the brake, nor did he notice that his foot was pushing the pedal. He returned to his senses only when one
of his companions woke up and said to him: Gard, it seems we bumped on something. Just relax, we might all
die. Due to its momentum, the Elf continued on its track and was able to stop only when it was already very
near the next curve.[10]

GLENN could not distinguish in the darkness what he had hit, especially since the right headlights of the truck
had been busted upon the first bumping thuds. In his confusion and fear, he immediately proceeded
home. GLENN did not report the incident to the Puerto Police Station because he was not aware of what
exactly he had hit. It was only when he reached his house that he noticed that the grill of the truck was broken;
the side mirror and round mirror, missing; and the windshield, splintered. Two hours later, he heard on Bombo
Radyo that an accident had occurred, and he realized that it was the PNP group that he had hit. GLENN
surrendered that same day to Governor Emano. [11]

Shirley Almazan of the PAG-ASA Office, Cagayan de Oro City, testified that based on an observed weather
report within the vicinity of Cagayan de Oro City, there was rain from 8:00 p.m. of October 1995 to 2:00 a.m.
the next day; and the sky was overcast from 11:00 p.m. of 4 October 1995 to 5:00 a.m. of 5 October
1995. What she meant by overcast is that there was no break in the sky; and, definitely, the moon and stars
could not be seen.[13]

TC: convicted of the complex crime of multiple murder, multiple frustrated murder and multiple attempted
murder, with the use of motor vehicle as the qualifying circumstance. Penalty of death, hence the automatic
review.
ISSUE: Whether there was intentional killing or attempt to kill the policemen, or a mere reckless imprudence

HELD: From the convergence of circumstances, we are inclined to believe that the tragic event was more a
product of reckless imprudence than of a malicious intent on Glenns part. First, as testified to by prosecution
rebuttal witness Danilo Olarita, the place of the incident was "very dark," as there was no moon. And according
to PAGASAs observed weather report within the vicinity of Cagayan de Oro City covering a radius of 50
kilometers, at the time the event took place, the sky was overcast, i.e., there was absolutely no break in the
thick clouds covering the celestial dome globe; hence, there was no way for the moon and stars to be seen.
Neither were there lampposts that illuminated the highway. Second, the jogging trainees and the rear guards
were all wearing black T-shirts, black short pants, and black and green combat shoes, which made them hard
to make out on that dark and cloudy night. The rear guards had neither reflectorized vests or gloves nor
flashlights in giving hand signals. Third, GLENN was driving on the proper side of the road, the right lane. On
the other hand, the jogging trainees were occupying the wrong lane, the same lane as Glenns vehicle was
traversing. Worse, they were facing the same direction as Glenns truck such that their backs were turned
towards the oncoming vehicles from behind. Fourth, no convincing evidence was presented to rebut Glenns
testimony that he had been momentarily blinded by the very bright and glaring lights of the oncoming vehicle at
the opposite direction as his truck rounded the curve. He must have been still reeling from the blinding effect of
the lights coming from the other vehicle when he plowed into the group of police trainees. Indeed, as pointed
out by appellant, instinct tells one to stop or swerve to a safe place the moment he sees a cow, dog, or cat on
the road, in order to avoid bumping or killing the same"; and more so if the one on the road is a person. It would
therefore be inconceivable for GLENN, then a young college graduate with a pregnant wife and three very
young children who were dependent on him for support, to have deliberately hit the group with his truck.

We are convinced that the incident, tragic though it was in light of the number of persons killed and seriously
injured, was an accident and not an intentional felony. It is significant to note that there is no shred of evidence
that GLENN had an axe to grind against the police trainees that would drive him into deliberately hitting them
with intent to kill. Glenns offense is in failing to apply the brakes, or to swerve his vehicle to the left or to a safe
place the movement he heard and felt the first bumping thuds. Had he done so, many trainees would have
been spared.

The test for determining whether a person is negligent in doing an act whereby injury or damage results to the
person or property of another is this: Could a prudent man, in the position of the person to whom negligence is
attributed, foresee harm to the person injured as a reasonable consequence of the course actually pursued? If
so, the law imposes a duty on the actor to refrain from that course or to take precautions to guard against its
mischievous results, and the failure to do so constitutes negligence. Reasonable foresight of harm, followed by
the ignoring of the admonition born of this prevision, is always necessary before negligence can be held to
exist.

GLENN showed an inexcusable lack of precaution. Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code states that reckless
imprudence consists in voluntarily, but without malice, doing or failing to do an act from which material damage
results by reason of inexcusable lack of precaution on the part of the person performing or failing to perform
such act, taking into consideration (1) his employment or occupation; (2) his degree of intelligence; (4) his
physical condition; and (3) other circumstances regarding persons, time and place.

GLENN, being then a young college graduate and an experienced driver, should have known to apply the
brakes or swerve to a safe place immediately upon hearing the first bumping thuds to avoid further hitting the
other trainees. By his own testimony, it was established that the road was slippery and slightly going downward;
and, worse, the place of the incident was foggy and dark. He should have observed due care in accordance
with the conduct of a reasonably prudent man, such as by slackening his speed, applying his brakes, or turning
to the left side even if it would mean entering the opposite lane (there being no evidence that a vehicle was
coming from the opposite direction). It is highly probable that he was driving at high speed at the time. And
even if he was driving within the speed limits, this did not mean that he was exercising due care under the
existing circumstances and conditions at the time.

Considering that the incident was not a product of a malicious intent but rather the result of a single act of
reckless driving, GLENN should be held guilty of the complex crime of reckless imprudence resulting in multiple
homicide with serious physical injuries and less serious physical injuries.

Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code provides that when the single act constitutes two or more grave or less
grave felonies, or when an offense is a necessary means for committing the other, the penalty for the most
serious crime shall be imposed, the same to be applied in its maximum period. Since Article 48 speaks of
felonies, it is applicable to crimes through negligence in view of the definition of felonies in Article 3 as acts or
omissions punishable by law committed either by means of deceit (dolo) or fault.

The slight physical injuries caused by GLENN to the ten other victims through reckless imprudence,
would, had they been intentional, have constituted light felonies. Being light felonies, which are not covered by
Article 48, they should be treated and punished as separate offenses. Separate informations should have,
therefore, been filed.

In the case at bar, it has been alleged in the information and proved during the trial that GLENN escaped
from the scene of the incident, leaving behind the victims. It being crystal clear that GLENN failed to render aid
to the victims, the penalty provided for under Article 365 shall be raised by one degree. Hence, for reckless
imprudence resulting in multiple homicide with serious physical injuries and less serious physical injuries, the
penalty would be prision correccional in its maximum period to prision mayor in its medium period. Applying
Article 48, the maximum of said penalty, which is prision mayor in its medium period, should be imposed. For
the separate offenses of reckless imprudence resulting in slight physical injuries, GLENN may be sentenced to
suffer, for each count, the penalty of arresto mayor in its minimum period.

Although it was established through the testimonies of prosecution witness Lemuel Pangca [33] and of
GLENN that the latter surrendered to Governor Emano of Misamis Oriental, such mitigating circumstance need
not be considered pursuant to the aforestated fifth paragraph of Article 365.

11. (DALAGUETE)

ART. 48. NO COMPLEX CRIME OF ARSON WITH MULTIPLE HOMICIDE

PEOPLE V. MALNGAN
GR No. 170470
Chico-Nazario, J.:

FACTS:

From the personal account of Remigio Bernardo, the Barangay Chairman in the area, as well as the personal
account of the pedicab driver named Rolando Gruta, it was at around 4:45 a.m. on January 2, 2001 when
Remigio Bernardo and his tanods saw the accused-appellant EDNA, one hired as a housemaid by Roberto
Separa, Sr., with her head turning in different directions, hurriedly leaving the house of her employer at No. 172
Moderna Street, Balut, Tondo, Manila. She was seen to have boarded a pedicab which was driven by a person
later identified as Rolando Gruta. She was heard by the pedicab driver to have instructed that she be brought
to Nipa Street, but upon her arrival there, she changed her mind and asked that she be brought instead to
Balasan Street where she finally alighted, after paying for her fare.

Thirty minutes later, at around 5:15 a.m. Barangay Chairman Bernardos group later discovered that a fire
gutted the house of the employer of the housemaid. Barangay Chairman Bernardo and his tanods responded
to the fire upon hearing shouts from the residents and thereafter, firemen from the Fire District 1-NCR arrived at
the fire scene to contain the fire.

When Barangay Chairman Bernardo returned to the Barangay Hall, he received a report from pedicab driver
Rolando Gruta, who was also a tanod, that shortly before the occurrence of the fire, he saw a woman (the
housemaid) coming out of the house at No. 172 Moderna Street, Balut, Tondo, Manila and he received a call
from his wife telling him of a woman (the same housemaid) who was acting strangely and suspiciously on
Balasan Street. Barangay Chairman Bernardo, Rolando Gruta and the other tanods proceeded to Balasan
Street and found the woman who was later identified as the accused-appellant. After Rolando Gruta positively
identified the woman as the same person who left No. 172 Moderna Street, Balut, Tondo, Manila, Barangay
Chairman Bernardo and his tanods apprehended her and brought her to the Barangay Hall for investigation. At
the Barangay Hall, Mercedita Mendoza, neighbor of Roberto Separa, Sr. and whose house was also burned,
identified the woman as accused-appellant EDNA who was the housemaid of Roberto Separa, Sr. Upon
inspection, a disposable lighter was found inside accused-appellant EDNAs bag. Thereafter, accused-appellant
EDNA confessed to Barangay Chairman Bernardo in the presence of multitudes of angry residents outside the
Barangay Hall that she set her employers house on fire because she had not been paid her salary for about a
year and that she wanted to go home to her province but her employer told her to just ride a broomstick in
going home.

Accused-appellant EDNA was then turned over to arson investigators headed by S[F]O4 Danilo Talusan, who
brought her to the San Lazaro Fire Station in Sta. Cruz, Manila where she was further investigated and then
detained.

When Mercedita Mendoza went to the San Lazaro Fire Station to give her sworn statement, she had the
opportunity to ask accused-appellant EDNA at the latters detention cell why she did the burning of her
employers house and accused-appellant EDNA replied that she set the house on fire because when she asked
permission to go home to her province, the wife of her employer Roberto Separa, Sr., named Virginia Separa
(sic) shouted at her: Sige umuwi ka, pagdating mo maputi ka na. Sumakay ka sa walis, pagdating mo maputi
ka na (TSN, January 22, 2002, p.6) (Go ahead, when you arrive your color would be fair already. Ride a
broomstick, when you arrive your color would be fair already.) And when Mercedita Mendoza asked accused-
appellant EDNA how she burned the house, accused-appellant EDNA told her: Naglukot ako ng maraming
diyaryo, sinindihan ko ng disposable lighter at hinagis ko sa ibabaw ng lamesa sa loob ng bahay (TSN, January
22, 2002, p. 7.) (I crumpled newspapers, lighted them with a disposable lighter and threw them on top of the
table inside the house.)

When interviewed by Carmelita Valdez, a reporter of ABS-CBN Network, accused-appellant EDNA while under
detention (sic) was heard by SFO4 (sic) Danilo Talusan as having admitted the crime and even narrated the
manner how she accomplished it. SFO4 (sic) Danilo Talusan was able to hear the same confession, this time at
his home, while watching the television program True Crime hosted by Gus Abelgas also of ABS-CBN Network.

The fire resulted in [the] destruction of the house of Roberto Separa, Sr. and other adjoining houses and the
death of Roberto Separa, Sr. and Virginia Separa together with their four (4) children, namely: Michael,
Daphne, Priscilla and Roberto, Jr.

CRIME CHARGED: Arson with Multiple Homicide


RTC: Convicted as charged (Accused filed a Motion for Demurrer of Evidence, alleging the crime charged is
not defined by the law)

ISSUE: Whether or not there is a complex crime of Arson with Multiple Homicide

HELD:
No. Arson is governed by the Art. 320 of the RPC and PD 1613. Art. 320 of the RPC, as amended, with respect
to destructive arson, and the provisions of PD No. 1613 respecting other cases of arson provide only one
penalty for the commission of arson, whether considered destructive or otherwise, where death results
therefrom. The raison d'tre is that arson is itself the end and death is simply the consequence

When fire is used with the intent to kill a particular person who may be in a house and that objective is attained
by burning the house, the crime is murder only. When the Penal Code declares that killing committed by means
of fire is murder, it intends that fire should be purposely adopted as a means to that end. There can be no
murder without a design to take life.[26] In other words, if the main object of the offender is to kill by means of
fire, the offense is murder. But if the main objective is the burning of the building, the resulting homicide may be
absorbed by the crime of arson.

If the house was set on fire after the victims therein were killed, fire would not be a qualifying circumstance. The
accused would be liable for the separate offenses of murder or homicide, as the case may be, and arson.

Accordingly, in cases where both burning and death occur, in order to determine what crime/crimes was/were
perpetrated whether arson, murder or arson and homicide/murder, it is de rigueur to ascertain the main
objective of the malefactor: (a) if the main objective is the burning of the building or edifice, but death results by
reason or on the occasion of arson, the crime is simply arson, and the resulting homicide is absorbed; (b) if, on
the other hand, the main objective is to kill a particular person who may be in a building or edifice, when fire is
resorted to as the means to accomplish such goal the crime committed is murder only; lastly, (c) if the objective
is, likewise, to kill a particular person, and in fact the offender has already done so, but fire is resorted to as a
means to cover up the killing, then there are two separate and distinct crimes committed homicide/murder and
arson.

Based on the facts of this case her intent was merely to destroy her employers house through the use of fire.

12. (DIMAYUGA)
Article 48 - Special complex crime of qualified carnapping or carnapping in an aggravated form;
Treachery only applies to crimes against persons

People v. Lobitania
G.R. No. 142380, September 5, 2002

Facts: On automatic appeal is the decision of RTC of Urdaneta City, convicting accused-appellant SPO1 Danilo
Lobitania of the crime of aggravated carnapping with murder and sentencing him to suffer the penalty of death.

Prosecution witness Jolito Sanchez was a cargador at the Navotas Fishport. He first met Lobitania, on
December 4, 1998 outside a beerhouse at the fishport when the latter ordered fish from him. On December 5,
1998, after the delivery of the fish, accused-appellant offered him a job as a helper in an ice plant in
Pangasinan. Sanchez agreed and, together with Lobitania and his companions Montolo, Sidro, Daniel and Jr.
Saburin, they boarded a bus bound for Urdaneta, Pangasinan at about 9 P.M.

The group alighted at Barangay Nancayasen and flagged down a tricycle driven by victim Alexander de
Guzman. Daniel and Jr. Subarin rode at the back of the driver while, Montolo and Sidro were inside the tricycle
with Sanchez in the sidecar. The driver turned left at an alley and after travelling a short distance, the driver
was shot at the right side of his chest below the armpit by Montolo. Sidro then grabbed the driver from his seat,
tied his hands behind his back and then shoved him out of the tricycle. Sanchez and Jr. Saburin tried to help
the driver but Montolo and Lobitania poked their guns at them and threatened that the same thing would
happen to them if they did not go with the group.

The group took the tricycle. Upon reaching a sugarcane plantation, Sanchez and Jr. Saburin, detached the
sidecar from the motorcycle. It was about 3 A.M. when the group boarded a different tricycle which brought
them to the fish market in Urdaneta. Sanchez and Jr. Saburin were told to stay but eventually left after two
hours of waiting.
Daniel, arrived and warned Sanchez not to squeal or else something would happen to him. Sanchez then went
out to look for Jr. Saburin whom he later found out was at the Presidential Anti-Organized Task Force in Camp
Crame. Sanchez and Jr. Saburin revealed to Major Danny Salvador (PAOCTF member) what they knew of the
incident in Pangasinan. They were accompanied by Major Salvador and Police Officer Nolasco to the
sugarcane plantation located in Barangay San Agustin, San Manuel Tarlac where the sidecar and motorcycle
were left but they found only the chain and cover. They went to the police station where they gave their sworn
statements regarding the theft of the tricycle and the killing of its driver whom they later identified as victim
Alexander de Guzman.

The Urdaneta police received the report of the killing of de Guzman, the recovery of the sidecar on December
6, 1998 and of the tricycle on December 12, 1998 from the police authorities of San Manuel, Tarlac where
these items were found. The owner, David Sarto, went to the San Manuel police station, identified the sidecar
and motorcycle as his, and stated that the vehicle was regularly driven by victim de Guzman. Based on the
autopsy report, de Guzman died due to hypovolemic shock due to gunshot wound, lungs, right.

RTC found him guilty beyond reasonable doubt of aggravated carnapping with murder and sentenced him to
suffer the supreme penalty of death.

Issue: Whether or not the trial court erred in convicting Lobitania when the evidence presented by the
prosecution was insufficient to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt

Ruling: No. The offense committed by Lobitania is the special complex crime of qualified carnapping or
carnapping in an aggravated form under Section 14 of Republic Act No. 6539, the Anti-Carnapping Act of 1992,
as amended by Section 20 of Republic Act No. 7659, the Death Penalty Law, which took effect on 31
December 1993.

Section 2 of R. A. 6536 as amended, defines the crime of carnapping as the taking, with intent to gain, of a
motor vehicle belonging to another without the latters consent, or by means of violence against or intimidation
of persons, or by using force upon things. It becomes qualified when in the course of the commission or on
occasion of the carnapping, the owner, driver or occupant of the carnapped vehicle is killed or raped. When the
carnapping is qualified, the penalty imposable is reclusion perpetua to death.

Conspiracy was present in the commission of the crime. The unity in purpose and design was evident in the
execution of the crime: the tricycle driver was ordered to turn left at an alley from the highway by accused-
appellant; Montolo fired at the driver; Sidro grabbed the driver, tied his hands and pushed him out of the
tricycle; Daniel and accused-appellant both poked their guns at prosecution witness Sanchez and Jr. Saburin
and threatened them; Daniel drove the tricycle after the driver was left on the road. Long-settled is the rule that
in conspiracy, the act of one is the act of all. All are deemed guilty of the crime committed regardless of who
fired the fatal shot.

As the crime was committed on December 6, 1998, R. A. 7659 applies to the case at bar. Under the
amendatory law, the penalty of reclusion perpetua to death is imposed when the owner, driver or occupant of
the carnapped motor vehicle is killed or raped in the course of the commission of the carnapping or on
occasion thereof. In imposing the penalty for a crime punishable by two indivisible penalties, Article 63 of the
Revised Penal Code provides that when there is no mitigating or aggravating circumstance, the lesser penalty
should be applied. There was one aggravating circumstance: abuse of superior strength. We thus uphold the
penalty of death imposed by the trial court but not for the reasons stated by the court below.

In imposing the death penalty, the trial court considered three aggravating circumstances against the accused-
appellant: the use of unlicensed firearms, grave abuse of authority and treachery. We agree with the penalty,
not with the justification. The use of unlicensed firearms was not alleged in the information and cannot therefore
be taken against accused-appellant. Grave abuse of authority also cannot be appreciated inasmuch as it was
not proven that accused-appellant took advantage of the prestige or ascendancy of his position as a police
officer. Treachery cannot likewise serve to aggravate the crime inasmuch as it only applies to crimes against
persons. Accused-appellant is found guilty of qualified carnapping or carnapping in an aggravated form, a
special complex crime, which is essentially a crime against property.

Since qualified carnapping is a crime against property, the trial court erred in appreciating treachery in as much
as the latter can only be considered in crimes against persons. This provides no comfort to accused-appellant,
however, because we find that the crime was aggravated by the abuse of superior strength, a circumstance
alleged in the information and duly proven by the prosecution. Three members of the Court maintain their
position that Republic Act No. 7659, insofar as it prescribes the death penalty, is unconstitutional; nevertheless,
they submit to the ruling of the Court, by majority vote, that the law is constitutional and the death penalty
should be accordingly imposed.

The decision of the RTC finding Lobatania guilty beyond reasonable doubt of qualified carnapping (or
carnapping in an aggravated form) is affirmed. Lobitania is sentenced to suffer the penalty of death.

***Note:

The case had a lengthy discussion on the effects of conspiracy with regard to a complex crime and cited a
number of jurisprudence where the court ruled that Art 48 may still apply despite the fact that several acts were
performed by several accused in the commission of the crime resulting to the death and/or injuries to their
victims. Particularly, the court discussed that there can be a scenario when the act or acts complained of
resulted from a single criminal impulse, it will constitute a single offense, and the existence of a single
criminal impulse is prevalent in cases of conspiracy. However, this fact varies on a case to case basis
and in this instance, the Court opined that still Art 48 will NOT APPLY.

13. (DIONISIO)

ARTICLE 48. When various victims expire from separate shots, such acts constitute separate and
distinct crimes

PEOPLE OF THE PIIILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, vs. WENCESLAO NELMIDA @ "ESLAO," and RICARDO
AJOK @ "PORDOY," Accused-Appellants.

PEREZ, J.:

FACTS:
Mayor Tawan-tawan of Salvador, Lanao del Norte, together with his security escorts composed of some
members of the Philippine Army, Philippine National Police (PNP) and civilian aides, to wit: (1) T/Sgt. Dacoco;
(2) PFC Angni; (3) PFC Tomanto; (4) PO3 Dela Cruz; (5) Juanito; (6) Mosanip; (7) Macasuba; and (8) a certain
Jun, respectively, were in Tubod, Lanao del Norte. In the afternoon, the group went home to Salvador, Lanao
del Norte, on board the yellow pick-up service vehicle of Mayor Tawan-tawan with Plate No. JRT 818 driven by
Juanito. Sitting at the passenger seat of the aforesaid vehicle was Mayor Tawan-tawan while those at the back
seat were Mosanip, Jun, and Macasuba, who was sitting immediately behind Juanito. Those seated on a
wooden bench installed at the rear (open) portion of the said yellow pick-up service vehicle were PFC Tomanto,
PFC Angni, PO3 Dela Cruz and T/Sgt. Dacoco. PFC Tomanto and PFC Angni were sitting beside each other
facing the right side of the road while PO3 Dela Cruz and T/Sgt. Dacoco were both seated behind PFC
Tomanto and PFC Angni facing the left side of the road.
At around 3:00 p.m. of the same day, appellants, together with other co-accused, brought Samuel to a waiting
shed located on the left side of the road going to Salvador, Lanao del Norte. Samuel was instructed by
appellants and their co-accused to stay in the said waiting shed while they assembled themselves in a diamond
position on both sides of the road, which is more or less five (5) meters away from the shed. Then, appellants
and their co-accused surreptitiously waited for the vehicle of the group of Mayor Tawan-tawan. A few minutes
later, Samuel saw the yellow pick-up service vehicle of Mayor Tawan-tawan approaching towards the direction
of Salvador, Lanao del Norte. The moment the yellow pick-up service vehicle of Mayor Tawan-tawan passed by
the aforesaid waiting shed, appellants and their co-accused opened fire and rained bullets on the vehicle using
high-powered firearms.

Both Macasuba, who was sitting immediately behind the driver, and PFC Tomanto, who was then sitting on the
rear (open) portion of the yellow pick-up service vehicle, saw appellant Wenceslao on the right side of the road
firing at them in a squatting position using an M-16 armalite rifle.

Macasuba was also able to identify appellants Ricardo, Pedro, Eduardo, Sr., Eduardo, Jr., Brigido and Alfredo
as among the ambushers. Mayor Tawan-tawan ordered Juanito to keep on driving to avoid greater casualties.
The vehicle stopped upon reaching the army and Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit (CAFGU)
detachment in Curva, Miagao, Salvador, Lanao del Norte. Mayor Tawan-tawan then asked assistance
therefrom. As a result of the ambush, two security escorts of Mayor Tawan-tawan died, while others
suffered injuries.

After a manhunt, Samuel was apprehended by military forces and was brought in for investigation, a few days
after, Wenceslao and Ricardo were also apprehended. The other accused remained at large.

RTC: Both accused appellants are guilty of the crime of double murder, frustrated multiple murder, and double
attempted murder

CA: Affirmed the trial courts ruling

ISSUE: WON the accused appellants should be held liable for the crimes aforementioned

RULING: NO. They should be liable for the separate crimes of 2 counts of murder and 7 counts of
attempted murder

The Supreme Court ruled that appellants should be convicted not of a complex crime but of separate crimes of
two (2) counts of murder and seven (7) counts of attempted murder as the killing and wounding of the victims in
this case were not the result of a single act but of several acts of the appellants, thus, making Article 48 of the
Revised Penal Code inapplicable.
Appellants and their co-accused simultaneous act of riddling the vehicle boarded by Mayor Tawan-tawan and
his group with bullets discharged from their firearms when the said vehicle passed by San Manuel, Lala, Lanao
del Norte, resulted in the death of two security escorts of Mayor Tawan-tawan.

Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code provides:

ART. 248. Murder. Any person who, not falling within the provisions of article 246 shall kill another, shall be
guilty of murder and shall be punished by reclusion perpetua to death if committed with any of the following
attendant circumstances:

1. With treachery, taking advantage of superior strength, with the aid of armed men, or employing means to
weaken the defense or of means or persons to insure or afford impunity.

xxxx

5. With evident premeditation. [Emphasis supplied].

Treachery, which was alleged in the Information, attended the commission of the crime. Time and again, this
Court, in a plethora of cases, has consistently held that there is treachery when the offender commits any of the
crimes against persons, employing means, methods or forms in the execution thereof, which tend directly and
specially to ensure its execution without risk to himself arising from the defense that the offended party might
make. There are two (2) conditions that must concur for treachery to exist, to wit: (a) the employment of means
of execution gave the person attacked no opportunity to defend himself or to retaliate; and (b) the means or
method of execution was deliberately and consciously adopted. "The essence of treachery is that the attack is
deliberate and without warning, done in a swift and unexpected manner, affording the hapless, unarmed and
unsuspecting victim no chance to resist or escape.

The deadly successive shots of the appellants and their co-accused did not allow the hapless victims, i.e., PO3
Dela Cruz and T/Sgt. Dacoco, any opportunity to put up a decent defense. The attack was executed by
appellants and their-co-accused in such a vicious manner as to make the defense virtually impossible. Thus,
as to the death of PO3 Dela Cruz and T/Sgt. Dacoco, appellants should be held liable for murder.

As regards the victims Macasuba, Mosanip, PFC Tomanto, PFC Angni and Juanito, although they were injured
during the ambush and were all hospitalized, except for Macasuba, it was not mentioned that their injuries and
wounds were mortal or fatal such that without the timely medical assistance accorded to them, they would have
died. However, it does not necessarily follow that the crimes committed against the aforenamed victims were
simply less serious physical injuries. Also, even though Mayor Tawan-tawan and Jun did not sustain any injury
during the ambush, it does not mean that no crime has been committed against them. The latter were just
fortunate enough not to have sustained any injury on the occasion thereof. Since appellants were motivated by
the same intent to kill, thus, as to Macasuba, Mosanip, PFC Tomanto, PFC Angni, Juanito, Mayor Tawan-tawan
and Jun, appellants should be held guilty of attempted murder.

What brings this case out of the ordinary is the issue of applicability of Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code. Its
resolution would determine whether the conviction of appellants must be for the separate crimes of two (2)
counts of murder and seven (7) counts of attempted murder or of the complex crime of double murder with
multiple frustrated murders and double attempted murder.

In a complex crime, two or more crimes are actually committed, however, in the eyes of the law and in
the conscience of the offender they constitute only one crime, thus, only one penalty is imposed. There
are two kinds of complex crime. The first is known as compound crime, or when a single act constitutes two or
more grave or less grave felonies while the other is known as complex crime proper, or when an offense is a
necessary means for committing the other. The classic example of the first kind is when a single bullet results
in the death of two or more persons. A different rule governs where separate and distinct acts result in a
number killed. Deeply rooted is the doctrine that when various victims expire from separate shots,
such acts constitute separate and distinct crimes

Evidently, there is in this case no complex crime proper. And the circumstances present in this case do
not fit exactly the description of a compound crime.

From its factual backdrop, it can easily be gleaned that the killing and wounding of the victims were not the
result of a single discharge of firearms by the appellants and their co-accused. To note, appellants and their co-
accused opened fire and rained bullets on the vehicle boarded by Mayor Tawan-tawan and his group. As a
result, two security escorts died while five (5) of them were wounded and injured. The victims sustained
gunshot wounds in different parts of their bodies. Therefrom, it cannot be gainsaid that more than one bullet
had hit the victims. Moreover, more than one gunman fired at the vehicle of the victims. As held in People v.
Valdez, each act by each gunman pulling the trigger of their respective firearms, aiming each particular
moment at different persons constitute distinct and individual acts which cannot give rise to a complex
crime.

Obviously, appellants and their co-accused performed not only a single act but several individual and distinct
acts in the commission of the crime. Thus, Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code would not apply for it speaks
only of a "single act."

The Information filed against appellants and their co-accused alleged conspiracy, among others. Although the
trial court did not directly state that a conspiracy existed, such may be inferred from the concerted actions of
the appellants and their co-accused, to wit: (1) appellants and their co-accused brought Samuel to a waiting
shed located on the left side of the road where the yellow pick-up service vehicle boarded by Mayor Tawan-
tawan and his group would pass; (2) appellants and their co-accused, thereafter, assembled themselves on
both sides of the road and surreptitiously waited for the aforesaid yellow pick-up service vehicle; (3) the
moment the yellow pick-up service vehicle passed by the waiting shed, appellants and their co-accused
opened fire and rained bullets thereon resulting in the killing and wounding of the victims; (4) immediately,
appellants and their co-accused ran towards the house of Samuels aunt to get their bags and other stuff; (5)
Samuel followed appellants and their co-accused; and (6) appellants and their co-accused fled.

Conspiracy is very much evident from the afore-enumerated actuations of the appellants and their co-accused.
Clearly, their acts were coordinated. They were motivated by a single criminal impulse - to kill the victims.
Indubitably, conspiracy is implied when the accused persons had a common purpose and were united in its
execution. Spontaneous agreement or active cooperation by all perpetrators at the moment of the commission
of the crime is sufficient to create joint criminal responsibility.

With the presence of conspiracy in the case at bench, appellants and their co-accused had assumed
joint criminal responsibility the act of one is the act of all. The ascertainment of who among them
actually hit, killed and/or caused injury to the victims already becomes immaterial. It is as though each
one performed the act of each one of the conspirators. Each one is criminally responsible for each one of the
deaths and injuries of the several victims. The severalty of the acts prevents the application of Article 48.
The applicability of Article 48 depends upon the singularity of the act, thus the definitional phrase "a
single act constitutes two or more grave or less grave felonies."

With all the foregoing, this Court holds appellants liable for the separate crimes of two (2) counts of
murder and seven (7) counts of attempted murder.

***Note:

The case had a lengthy discussion on the effects of conspiracy with regard to a complex crime and cited a
number of jurisprudence where the court ruled that Art 48 may still apply despite the fact that several acts were
performed by several accused in the commission of the crime resulting to the death and/or injuries to their
victims. Particularly, the court discussed that there can be a scenario when the act or acts complained of
resulted from a single criminal impulse, it will constitute a single offense, and the existence of a single
criminal impulse is prevalent in cases of conspiracy. However, this fact varies on a case to case basis
and in this instance, the Court opined that still Art 48 will NOT APPLY.

14. (ENRIQUEZ)

ARTICLE 48. A judgment of acquittal cannot be reopened or appealed because of the doctrine that
nobody may be put twice in jeopardy for the same offense. Hence, even if seemingly erroneous, a
judgment of acquittal is the final verdict. But where the court never acquired jurisdiction over the
person of the accused, it would be grave abuse of discretion on the part of the court to acquit him.

PEOPLE v. SANDIGANBAYAN

FACTS:

Soledad Oppen Montilla (now deceased) was the owner of a residential house and a prawn farm in Barangay
Ubay, Pulupandan, Negros Occidental. She has two grandsons: brothers Magdaleno and Bonifacio
Pea.Initially, Bonifacio managed Soledads properties and businesses. He was then in possession of her
residential house. Later, Soledad executed a SPA appointing Magdaleno as her attorney-in-fact. Consequently,
Bonifacio was ejected from her residential house and Magdaleno took possession of it. Bonifacio then
threatened to evict Magdaleno from the residential house. This prompted Magdaleno to file a petition for
injunction with prayer for a TRO. The trial court denied the petition and reinstated Bonifacio to his possession of
the residential house. Magdaleno filed a motion for reconsideration but it was denied.

After the Order became final and executory, the trial court, on November 23, 1990, issued a writ of execution,
designating the Commanding Officer of the Criminal Investigation Services (CIS) at Bacolod City as Special
Sheriff to implement the writ. The Commanding General of the Negros Island Command of the Armed Forces of
the Philippines was also mandated to give full assistance to the Special Sheriff.

Meanwhile, Magdaleno filed with the CA a petition for certiorari with prayer for a TRO. On November 23, 1990,
(the day the trial court issued the writ of execution), the Court of Appeals granted Magdalenos prayer for a
TRO.

The following day, November 24, 1990, Magdalenos counsel furnished the Provincial Commander a copy of the
TRO from the CA. In turn, the latter apprised the CIS and the Commanding General of the Negros Island
Command about the same TRO.

Respondents (military and police officers) nonetheless proceeded to enforce the writ. They forcibly entered
Soledads residential house. Respondent Brigadier General Raymundo Jarque directed the operation through a
radio. Inside the compound, Magdaleno showed them a copy of the TRO issued by the Court of Appeals, but
they disregarded it. The civilian respondents, Pulupandan Mayor Antonio Suatengco, Atty. Alan Zamora, Jesus
Clavecilla and Manuel Malapitan, Sr., joined the men in uniform. The respondents then forced open several
cabinets and took a Baume & Mercier watch, two M-16 assault rifles, a Benelli shotgun, and P85,000.00 in
cash. Magdaleno then left the compound.

Respondents occupied the premises from November 24, 1990 to January 3, 1991. On November 27, 1990,
they entered Soledads fishpond located some two (2) kilometers from the residential house and harvested 2.5
tons of prawns. Despite the directive of former President Fidel V. Ramos, then the Secretary of National
Defense, to respondents to comply with the TRO, they remained obstinate and harvested more prawns on
December 6, 1990 and January 3, 1991.

Meanwhile, on May 30, 1991, the Court of Appeals promulgated its Decision in favor of Magdaleno, restraining
and prohibiting Bonifacio from taking possession of the residential house

At the instance of Magdaleno, the Office of the Ombudsman filed with the Sandiganbayan, the Informations
(earlier mentioned) for robbery, violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, and three (3) counts of
qualified theft against herein respondents.
When arraigned, the respondents, duly-assisted by counsel, pleaded not guilty to all the charges. Respondents
Jesus Clavecilla and Manuel Malapitan, Sr. were never arraigned.

After the prosecution had rested its cases, the defense filed, without leave of court, a demurrer to evidence on
the ground that the prosecution failed to prove the guilt of respondents beyond reasonable doubt.

On January 20, 1999, the Sandiganbayan rendered its Decision granting respondents demurrer to evidence
and acquitting all the respondents for insufficiency of evidence.

In acquitting respondents, the Sandiganbayan held that they were only seeking to implement a lawful order of
the trial court. They came to know of the TRO issued by the Court of Appeals only after they had implemented
the writ of execution. The charges were fabricated to enable Magdaleno to get even with the respondents for
implementing the writ.

ISSUE: WON the Sandiganbayan, in granting respondents demurrer to evidence, acted without jurisdiction or
with grave abuse of discretion.

HELD: The petition is partly meritorious.

Records show that two of the respondents, Jesus Clavecilla and Manuel Malapitan, Sr., were never arraigned
before the Sandiganbayan. Nor were they ever arrested. Hence, the Sandiganbayan did not acquire jurisdiction
over them.[ Basic is the rule that before a court can act upon the case of an accused, it must first acquire
jurisdiction over his person. Jurisdiction over the accused is acquired by (a) his arrest, or (b) his voluntary
submission. If the accused is a fugitive from justice, the court cannot even proceed with a trial in absentia,
unless he has been previously arraigned. We thus hold that the Sandiganbayan committed grave abuse of
discretion in acquitting both respondents for lack of jurisdiction over their persons. Clearly, they could not validly
file a demurrer to evidence.

With respect to the rest of the respondents, we rule that the Sandiganbayan did not abuse its discretion in
granting their demurrer to evidence. Section 15, Rule 119 of the 1985 Rules on Criminal Procedure then
applicable provides:

SEC. 15. Demurrer to evidence. After the prosecution has rested its case, the court may dismiss the
case on the ground of insufficiency of evidence: (1) on its own initiative after giving the prosecution
an opportunity to be heard; or (2) on motion of the accused filed with prior leave of court.
If the court denies the motion for dismissal, the accused may adduce evidence in his defense. When the
accused files such motion to dismiss without express leave of court, he waives the right to present evidence
and submits the case for judgment on the basis of the evidence for the prosecution. (n) (As amended by
Resolution of the Supreme Court, dated July 7, 1988)

The above Rule authorizes the trial court to dismiss a criminal case motu proprio or upon motion of the
accused provided that the prosecution has been given an opportunity to be heard. In the instant cases, there is
no question that the prosecution had presented its evidence in support of the charges against the accused.

Judicial action on a motion to dismiss or demurrer to evidence is best left to the exercise of sound judicial
discretion. Accordingly, unless the Sandiganbayan acted without jurisdiction or with grave abuse of discretion,
its Decision to grant or deny the demurrer may not be disturbed.

Grave abuse of discretion is the capricious and whimsical exercise of judgment as equivalent to lack of
jurisdiction or where the power is exercised in an arbitrary or despotic manner by reason of passion or personal
hostility, and it must be so patent and gross as to amount to an evasion of positive duty or a virtual refusal to
perform the duty enjoined or to act in contemplation of law. [16] We have carefully scrutinized the records of
Criminal Cases Nos. 17282-86 and found that none of these was committed by the Sandiganbayan in granting
the demurrer to evidence.

First, petitioners theory that the Sandiganbayan totally disregarded the prosecutions evidence in granting the
demurrer has no basis. Petitioner points out that the assailed Decision did not cite any transcript of
stenographic notes or any of the prosecutions documentary evidence. A decision need not be a complete
recital of the evidence presented. It is sufficient if it states the facts as found by the court. To test the adequacy
of the challenged Decision, the proper yardstick is Section 14 of Article VIII of the Constitution which states in
part that no decision shall be rendered by any court without expressing therein clearly and distinctly the facts
and the law on which it is based. The purpose of this provision is to inform the parties of how the court reached
its conclusion after considering the pertinent facts and the applicable laws. The losing party is entitled to know
why he lost and following analysis of the decision, he may elevate what he considers its errors to a higher
tribunal for review. The fact that the Sandiganbayan did not cite any transcript of stenographic notes or
documentary proof does not mean that it totally disregarded the prosecutions evidence. In its ratiocination, the
court discussed the issues as borne by the evidence and cited the laws applicable. Simply stated, its
conclusion is based on the evidence presented by the prosecution and the laws applicable.

Second, the petitioner submits that inasmuch as Associate Justice Rodolfo G. Palattao did not participate in the
hearing of the cases, he committed grave abuse of discretion when he penned the assailed Decision. We find
nothing whimsical, capricious, or despotic on his part. It is settled that the decision of the judge who did not try
the case is not by that reason alone erroneous, especially when the decision has been deliberated upon by a
collegiate court, like the Sandiganbayan. Significantly, the other Justices present during the entire proceedings
concurred in the ponencia. The absence of a dissent is telling.
The demurrer to evidence in criminal cases, such as the one at bar, is filed after the prosecution had rested its
case, and when the same is granted, it calls for an appreciation of the evidence adduced by the prosecution
and its sufficiency to warrant conviction beyond reasonable doubt, resulting in a dismissal of the case on the
merits, tantamount to an acquittal of the accused. Such dismissal of a criminal case by the grant of demurrer to
evidence may not be appealed, for to do so would be to place the accused in double jeopardy. The verdict
being one of acquittal, the case ends there.

The sole office of an extraordinary writ of certiorari is the correction of errors of jurisdiction including the
commission of grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction. For as long as the court
acted within its jurisdiction, an error of judgment that it may commit in the exercise thereof is not correctible
through the special civil action ofcertiorari. To reiterate, the Sandiganbayan, in rendering the challenged
Decision, acted with jurisdiction and did not gravely abuse its discretion.

15. (GASAPO)

Under Article 48 of the RPC, complex crimes encompass either (1) an act which constitutes two or
more grave or less grave offenses; or (2) an offense which is a necessary means for committing
another and petitioner neither performed a single act resulting in less or less grave crimes nor
committed an offense as a means of consummating another.

PAERA V. PEOPLE (2011)

FACTS:

This resolves the petition for review of the ruling of the Regional Trial Court of Dumaguete City (RTC) finding
petitioner Santiago Paera guilty of three counts of Grave Threats, in violation of Article 282 of the Revised Penal
Code (RPC).

As punong barangay of Mampas, Bacong, Negros Oriental, petitioner Santiago Paera (petitioner) allocated his
constituents use of communal water coming from a communal tank by limiting distribution to the residents
of Mampas, Bacong. The tank sits on a land located in the neighboring barangay ofMampas, Valencia and
owned by complainant Vicente Darong (Vicente), father of complainant Indalecio Darong (Indalecio). Despite
petitioners scheme,Indalecio continued drawing water from the tank. On 7 April 1999, petitioner
reminded Indalecio of the water distribution scheme and cut Indalecios access.

The following day, petitioner inspected the tank after constituents complained of water supply interruption.
Petitioner discovered a tap from the main line which he promptly disconnected. To stem the flow of water from
the ensuing leak, petitioner, using a borrowed bolo, fashioned a wooden plug. It was at this point
when Indalecio arrived. What happened next is contested by the parties.
According to the prosecution, petitioner, without any warning, picked-up his bolo and charged
towards Indalecio, shouting Patyon tikaw! (I will kill you!). Indalecio ran for safety, passing along the way his
wife, Diosetea Darong (Diosetea) who had followed him to the water tank. Upon seeing
petitioner,Diosetea inquired what was the matter. Instead of replying, petitioner
shouted Wala koy gipili, bisag babaye ka, patyon tikaw! (I dont spare anyone, even if you are a woman, I will
kill you!). Diosetea similarly scampered and sought refuge in the nearby house of a relative. Unable to
pursue Diosetea, petitioner turned his attention back to Indalecio. As petitioner chased Indalecio, he passed
Vicente, and, recognizing the latter, repeatedly thrust his bolo towards him, shouting Bisag gulang ka, buk-
on nako imo ulo! (Even if you are old, I will crack open your skull!)

According to petitioner, however, it was Indalecio who threatened him with a bolo, angrily inquiring why
petitioner had severed his water connection. This left petitioner with no choice but to take a defensive stance
using the borrowed bolo, prompting Indalecio to scamper.

MCTC: Guilty as charged

RTC: Affirmed the decision of the lower court

ISSUE: The question is whether petitioner is guilty of three counts of Grave Threats.

HELD: Yes.

To limit his liability to one count of Grave Threats, petitioner tries to fit the facts of the case to the concept of
continued crime (delito continuado) which envisages a single crime committed through a series of acts arising
from one criminal intent or resolution. To fix the penalty for his supposed single continued crime, petitioner
invokes the rule for complex crime under Article 48 of the RPC imposing the penalty for the most serious crime,
applied in its maximum period.

The nature of the crime of Grave Threats and the proper application of the concepts of continued and
complex crimes preclude the adoption of petitioners theory.

Article 282 of the RPC holds liable for Grave Threats any person who shall threaten another with the
infliction upon the person x x x of the latter or his family of any wrong amounting to a crime[.] This
felony is consummated as soon as the threats come to the knowledge of the person threatened.
Applying these parameters, it is clear that petitioners threat to kill Indalecio and Diosetea and crack open
Vicentes skull are wrongs on the person amounting to (at the very least) homicide and serious physical injuries
as penalized under the RPC. These threats were consummated as soon as Indalecio, Diosetea, and Vicente
heard petitioner utter his threatening remarks. Having spoken the threats at different points in time to these
three individuals, albeit in rapid succession, petitioner incurred three separate criminal liabilities.

Petitioners theory fusing his liability to one count of Grave Threats because he only had a single mental
resolution, a single impulse, and single intent to threaten the Darongs assumes a vital fact: that he had
foreknowledge of Indalecio, Diosetea, and Vicentes presence near the water tank in the morning of 8 April
1999. The records, however, belie this assumption. Thus, in the case of Indalecio, petitioner was as much
surprised to see Indalecio as the latter was in seeing petitioner when they chanced upon each other near the
water tank. Similarly, petitioner came across Diosetea as he was chasing Indalecio who had scampered for
safety. Lastly, petitioner crossed paths with Vicente while running after Indalecio. Indeed, petitioner went to the
water tank not to execute his single intent to threaten Indalecio, Diosetea, and Vicente but to investigate a
suspected water tap. Not having known in advance of the Darongs presence near the water tank at the time in
question, petitioner could not have formed any intent to threaten any of them until shortly before he
inadvertently came across each of them.

The importance of foreknowledge of a vital fact to sustain a claim of continued crime undergirded our ruling
in Gamboa v. Court of Appeals. There, the accused, as here, conceded liability to a lesser crime one count
of estafa, and not 124 as charged theorizing that his conduct was animated by a single fraudulent intent to
divert deposits over a period of several months. We rejected the claim

[f]or the simple reason that [the accused] was not possessed of any fore-knowledge of any
deposit by any customer on any day or occasion and which would pass on to his possession
and control. At most, his intent to misappropriate may arise only when he comes in
possession of the deposits on each business day but not infuturo, since petitioner company
operates only on a day-to-day transaction. As a result, there could be as many acts of
misappropriation as there are times the private respondent abstracted and/or diverted the
deposits to his own personal use and benefit. 15 x x x x (Emphasis supplied)

Similarly, petitioners intent to threaten Indalecio, Diosetea, and Vicente with bodily harm arose only when he
chanced upon each of his victims.

Indeed, petitioners theory holds water only if the facts are altered that is, he
threatened Indalecio, Diosetea, and Vicente at the same place and at the same time. Had this been true,
then petitioners liability for one count of Grave Threats would have rested on the same basis grounding our
rulings that the taking of six roosters or 13 cows found at the same place and taken at the same time results in
the commission of only one count of theft because

[t]here is no series of acts committed for the accomplishment of different purposes, but only of
one which was consummated, and which determines the existence of only one crime. The act
of taking the roosters [and heads of cattle] in the same place and on
the same occasioncannot give rise to two crimes having an independent existence of their
own, because there are not two distinct appropriations nor two intentions that characterize two
separate crimes. (Emphasis in the original)
Having disposed of petitioners theory on the nature of his offense, we see no reason to extensively
pass upon his use of the notion of complex crime to avail of its liberal penalty scheme. It suffices to
state that under Article 48 of the RPC, complex crimes encompass either (1) an act which constitutes
two or more grave or less grave offenses; or (2) an offense which is a necessary means for committing
another and petitioner neither performed a single act resulting in less or less grave crimes nor
committed an offense as a means of consummating another.

Decision of the RTC is affirmed.