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Title People v. Valenciano GR No. 180926 10 December 2008 Velasco, Jr., J.
Facts Lourdes Valenciano, Teresita Marquez aka Teresita Imperial, Romeo Marquez aka Rodante Imperial, and Rommel Marquez aka Rommel Imperial purported themselves to be connected with Middle East International Manpower Resources, Inc. and obtained money from four people whom they promised to recruit for work at a factory in Taiwan. Valenciano received the payments, but turned them over to the Marquezes who issued receipts. While the Marquezes remain at large, Valenciano was caught and tried. She was found guilty by the lower court of illegal recruitment in large scale. The CA affirmed the decision. Valenciano appealed, claiming that she was an ordinary employee of the Middle East International Manpower Resources, Inc., and that her promise that the four recruits would be employed in Taiwan was made in good faith, and in the performance of her duties as a clerk in the company.
Issue/s W/N Valenciano was engaged in illegal recruitment.
Ruling YES. Valenciano’s claim that she was a mere employee of her coaccused does not relieve her of liability. An employee of a company or corporation engaged in illegal recruitment may be held liable as principal, together with his employer, if it is shown that the employee actively and consciously participated in illegal recruitment. 1. As testified to by the complainants, accusedappellant was among those who met and transacted with them regarding the job placement offers. In some instances, she made the effort to go to their houses to recruit them. She even gave assurances that they would be able to find employment abroad and leave for Taiwan after the filing of their applications. Accusedappellant was clearly engaged in recruitment activities, notwithstanding her gratuitous protestation that her actions were merely done in the course of her employment as a clerk. 2. It is sufficient that the accused promises or offers for a fee employment to warrant conviction for illegal recruitment. Accusedappellant made representations that complainants would receive employment abroad, and this suffices for her conviction, even if her name does not appear on the receipts issued to complainants as evidence
Doctrine/s One cannot escape liability by claiming that he is not aware that before working for his employer in the recruitment agency, he should first be registered with the POEA. Illegal recruitment in large scale is malum prohibitum, not malum in se. Good faith is not a defense. Money is not material to a prosecution for illegal recruitment, as the definition of “recruitment and placement” in the Labor Code includes the phrase, “whether for profit or not.” To prove illegal recruitment in large scale, the prosecution is burdened to prove three essential elements: (1) the person charged undertook a recruitment activity under Article 13(b) or any prohibited practice under Article 34 of the Labor Code; (2) accused did not have the license or authority to lawfully engage in the recruitment and placement of workers; and (3) accused committed the same against three or more persons individually or as a group.
Labor Standards Case Digest Matrix 3 – Stef Macapagal
People v. Hu GR No. 182232 6 October 2008 Chico-Nazario, J.
Nenita Hu is the President of Brighturn International Services, Inc. a land-based recruitment agency duly licensed by the POEA to engage in the business of recruitment and placement of workers abroad. Ethel Genoves, on the other hand, worked as a consultant and marketing officer of Brighturn. Aside from her stint at Brighturn, she was also connected with Riverland Consultancy Service, another recruitment agency. Brighturn was authorized to recruit, process, and deploy land-based workers for the period of 18 December 1999 to 17 December 2001.
W/N Hu was engaged in recruitment in large scale.
that payment was made. Certifications made by the POEA stated that accused-appellant in her personal capacity was not licensed or authorized to recruit workers for overseas employment and that any recruitment activities undertaken by her are illegal, and that her name does not appear on the list of employees submitted by Middle East International Manpower Resources, Inc. Accusedappellant thus could point to no authority allowing her to recruit complainants, as she was not an employee of Middle East, nor was she allowed to do so in her personal capacity. Furthermore, she undertook recruitment activities outside the premises of the office of a licensed recruitment agency, which can only be done with the prior approval of the POEA. NO. A conviction for large scale illegal recruitment must be based on a finding in each case of illegal recruitment of three or more persons whether individually or as a group. While it is true that the law does not require that at least three victims testify at the trial, nevertheless, it is necessary that there is a sufficient evidence proving that the offense was committed against three or more persons. In the case at bar, the prosecution failed to adduce sufficient evidence to prove that illegal recruitment was committed against three or more persons. The illegal recruitment was committed against only one person: Garcia, 3.
Illegal recruitment is committed when two elements concur: (1) the offender has no valid license or authority required by law to enable him to lawfully engage in the recruitment and placement of workers; and (2) he undertakes any activity within the meaning of “recruitment and placement” defined under Article 13(b) of the Labor Code. The crime becomes Illegal Recruitment in Large Scale when the foregoing two elements concur, with the addition of a third element—the recruiter committed the same against three or more persons, individually or as a group.
Labor Standards Case Digest Matrix 3 – Stef Macapagal
Genoves and Hu were charged with Illegal Recruitment in Large Scale following the complaint from 6 people that they promised the latter employment/job placement abroad and collected fees from them. However, when the job placements never materialized, the complainants demanded that the money they gave as placement fees be returned to them. Hu was not able to refund the same. Four of these complainants were promised employment during the validity of Brighturn’s license. Garcia applied on April 2002, when Brighturn’s license had already expired. She was referred to Best One, another recruitment agency, but her placement fee was paid with Brighturn. For her defense, Hu cited that the receipts that the complainants showed her were issued by Riverland. She denied knowing Genoves. In January 1993, Rosario Villar and Dolores Placa represented to Nila Panilag that they would be able to find her a job abroad and obtained from the latter P6,500 as placement fee, but they did not have any license or authority to do so. An Information was filed against Villar and Placa with the title designating their offense under RA 8042. In 2002, after the trial, the RTC held Villar liable for the offense of illegal recruitment under the Labor Code. Villar appealed to the CA, which found that Villar should have only been charged under Article 13(b) of the Labor Code and not under RA 8042. It then held that Villar was liable under Article 38 of the Labor Code, in relation to Article 13(b) and Article 39 of the same Code. It then
because Hu referred Garcia to another agency without the license or authority to do so. Illegal recruitment cannot successfully attach to the allegations of the others since they testified that they accomplished their pre-employment requirements through Brighturn from June 2001 up to October of the same year, a period wherein Brighturn’s license to engage in recruitment and placement was still in full force and effect. However, failure of the prosecution to prove the guilt of Hu beyond reasonable doubt does not absolve her of her civil obligation to return the money she collected from the complainants. Neither does her acquittal herein exempt her from subsequent criminal prosecution for estafa provided that deceit, which is an essential element of estafa, be proven by the prosecution.
The act of referral, which means the act of passing along or forwarding an applicant after an initial interview to a selected employer, placement or bureau, is included in recruitment. The absence of receipts in the case of illegal recruitment does not warrant the acquittal of the appellant and is not fatal to the prosecution’s case. As long as the prosecution is able to establish through credible and testimonial evidence that the appellant had engaged in illegal recruitment, a conviction for the offense can be very well justified. Obiter: Ei incumbit probation qui dicit non qui negat – he who asserts, not he who denies, must prove.
Villar v. People GR No. 176169 14 November 2008 Tinga, J.
W/N RA 8042 was retroactively used as basis for filing a criminal action against Villar for illegal recruitment.
NO. Petitioner was charged in 1998 under an Information that erroneously designated the offense as covered by RA 8042, but alleged in its body acts which are punishable under the Labor Code. As it was proven that she had committed the acts she was charged with, she was properly convicted under the Labor Code, and not under RA 8042. YES. The prosecution established beyond reasonable doubt that petitioner had performed the acts constituting the offense defined in Art. 38, in relation to Art. 13(b) and punished by Art. 39 of the Labor Code, as alleged in the body of the Information. THE LABOR CODE. A criminal act is punishable under the laws in force
W/N Villar is guilty of illegal recruitment.
The real nature of the crime charged is determined, not from the caption or preamble of the information nor from the specification of the law alleged to have been violated, but by the actual recital of facts in the complaint or information. What controls is not the designation but the description of the offense charged. If the accused performed the acts alleged in the body of the information, in the manner stated, the then he ought to be punished and punished adequately, whatever may be the name of the crime which those acts constitute.
Under which law should Villar be held accountable?
Labor Standards Case Digest Matrix 3 – Stef Macapagal
affirmed the trial court’s decision. Villar appealed, claiming that the CA failed to consider that RA 8042 cannot be given retroactive effect and the decision of the RTC constitutes a violation of the constitutional prohibition against ex post facto law.
at the time of its commission. Thus, Villar can only be charged and found guilty under the Labor Code which was in force in 1993 when the acts attributed to her were committed. W/N RA 8042 was applied retroactively in Villar’s case. NO. Neither the trial court nor the appellate court give RA 8042 a retroactive application because both courts passed upon Villar’s case only under the aegis of the Labor Code. The proceedings before the trial court and the appellate court did not violate the prohibition against ex post facto law nor involved a retroactive application of RA 8042 in any way. YES. Diaz was neither a licensee nor a holder of authority to qualify him to lawfully engage in recruitment and placement activity. Appellant told the three women that he was recruiting contract workers for abroad, particularly Brunei, and promised them job opportunities if they can produce various amounts of money for expenses and processing of documents. He manifestly gave the impression to the three women that he had the ability to send workers abroad. Misrepresenting himself as a recruiter of workers for Brunei, he promised them work for a fee and convinced them to give their money for the purpose of getting an employment overseas.
People v. Diaz GR No. 112175 26 July 1996 Torres, Jr., J.
Three women (Navarro, Fabricante, and Ramirez) were enrolled at the Henichi Techno Exchange Cultural Foundation in Davao City, studying Niponggo, when they were informed by their teacher, Mrs. Aplicador, that she knew of a Mr. Paulo Lim who also knew of one Engineer Erwin Diaz who was recruiting applicants for Brunei. Accompanied by Mrs. Aplicador, the three women went to Mr. Lim who told them that his children had already applied with Engr. Diaz. The four women were then accompanied by Mr. Lim to the CIS Detention Center where Engr. Diaz was already being detained. After Navarro and Ramirez had already given 20k as placement fee, Fabricante went to the office of the POEA and found out the Engr. Diaz was not licensed. Fabricante informed the two women about her discovery and they all withdrew their applications. Engr. Diaz refunded their payments. The trial court held Engr. Diaz guilty of illegal recruitment in large scale. Bulu Chowdury, a consultant of Craftrade Overseas Developers, interviewed potential applicants for work at a factory in South Korea,
W/N Diaz was engaged in illegal recruitment.
The crime of illegal recruitment, as defined under Article 38(a) in relation to Articles 13(b) and 34 and penalized under Article 39 of the Labor Code, as amended by PD 1920 and PD 2018, is any recruitment activity, including the prohibited practices enumerated under Article 34, undertaken by a non-licensee or non-holder of authority. A person is guilty of illegal recruitment when he gives the impression that he has the power to send workers abroad.
People v. Chowdury GR No. 129577-80 15 February 2000 Puno, J.
W/N Chowdury should be held liable for illegal recruitment in large scale.
NO. The persons criminally liable for illegal recruitment are the principals, accomplices, and accessories. In case of juridical persons, the officers
The existence of the corporate entity does not shield from prosecution the corporate agent who knowingly and intentionally causes the corporation
Labor Standards Case Digest Matrix 3 – Stef Macapagal
namely Aser Sasis, Estrella Calleja, and Melvin Miranda. The three were charged processing fees which were received by one Josephine Ong. They were promised that they would be able to work abroad, but they were never deployed. They tried to refund their money from Craftrade to no avail, and filed a case against Chowdury for illegal recruitment. It appears that Craftrade was previously licensed to recruit workers for abroad, and the license expired on 15 December 1993. It was granted a temporary license effective 16 December 1993 until 11 September 1994. From 11 September, the POEA granted Craftrade another temporary authority to process the expiring visas of overseas workers who have already been deployed. On 14 December 1994, POEA suspended Craftrade’s temporary license. Chowdury, for his part, was an interviewer for Craftrade until his resignation on 12 November 1994. The trial court found Chowdury guilty of illegal recruitment in large scale.
having control, management or direction of their business shall be liable. An employee of a company or corporation engaged in illegal recruitment may be held liable as principal, together with his employer, if it is shown that he actively and consciously participated in illegal recruitment. However, at the time Chowdury was employed by Craftrade, the company was operating under a temporary authority given by the POEA pending renewal of its license. The temporary license included the authority to recruit workers. Although Craftrade failed to register Chowdury’s name in the POEA as an employee, Chowdury was unaware of that fact.
to commit a crime. The employee or agent of a corporation engaged in unlawful business naturally aids and abets in the carrying on of such business and will be prosecuted as principal if with knowledge of the business, its purpose and effect, he consciously contributes his efforts to its conduct and promotion, however slight his contribution may be.