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Padilla vs.

Dizon 158 SCRA 127

On July 17, 1991, State Prosecutor of DOJ Manila, JovencitoZuño ±led an administrative complaint against Judge
BaltazarDizon of RTC Pasay City because he acquitted the defendants in four cases of illegal possession of ±rearms,
all of them had been arrested at NAIA while attempting to smuggle ±rearms into and out of the country. One of
the accused, Lo Chi Fai was caught by Customs guards at NAIA while attempting to smuggle foreign currency and
foreign exchange instruments out of the country. Lo Chi Fai was acquitted. Judge Dizon acquitted him saying that
he had no willful intention to violate the law. He also directed the release to Lo Chi Fai of at least the amount of
3,000 USD under the Central Bank Circular No. 960. Issue Thus, Custom Commissioner Padilla ±led a complaint
against Judge Dizon.
Issue: Whether or not respondent Judge Dizon is guilty of gross incompetence or gross ignorance of the law in
holding the accussed Lo Chi Fai for violation of Central Bank Circular No. 960
Held Yes, Judge Dizon is guilty. Baltazar R. Dizon ignored the fact that the foreign currency and foreign currency
instruments found in the possession of Lo Chi Fai when he was apprehended at the airport and the amounts of
such foreign exchange did not correspond to the foreign currency declarations presented by Lo Chi Fai at the trial,
and that these currency declarations were declarations belonging to other people. In invoking the provisions of the
Central Bank Circular No. 960 to justify the release of US$3,000.00 to Lo Chi Fai, Baltazar R. Dizon again diplayed
gross incompetence and gross ignorance of law. There is nothing in the Central Bank Circular which could be taken
as authority for the trial court to release the said amount of US Currency to Lo Chi Fai.

The respondent-judge has shown gross incompetence or gross ignorance of the law in holding that to convict the
accused for violation of Central Bank Circular No. 960, the prosecution must establish that the accused had the
criminal intent to violate the law. The respondent ought to know that proof of malice or deliberate intent (mens
rea) is not essential in offenses punished by special laws, which are mala prohibita. In requiring proof of malice, the
respondent has by his gross ignorance allowed the accused to go scot free. The accused at the time of his
apprehension at the Manila International Airport had in his possession the amount of US$355,349.57 in assorted
foreign currencies and foreign exchange instruments (380 pieces), without any specific authority from the Central
Bank as required by law. At the time of his apprehension, he was able to exhibit only two foreign currency
declarations in his possession. These were old declarations made by him on the occasion of his previous trips to
the Philippines

An information is filed against former President Joseph Ejercito Estrada a.k.a. 'Asiong Salonga' and 'Jose Velarde,'
together with Jose 'Jinggoy' Estrada, Charlie 'Atong' Ang, Edward Serapio, Yolanda T. Ricaforte, Alma Alfaro, John
Doe a.k.a. Eleuterio Tan or Eleuterio Ramos Tan or Mr. Uy, Jane Doe a.k.a. Delia Rajas and John Does & Jane Does
of the crime of Plunder under RA 7080 (An Act Defining and Penalizing the Crime of Plunder)
June, 1998 to January 2001: Estrada himself and/or in connivance/conspiracy with his co-accused, who are
members of his family, relatives by affinity or consanguinity, business associates, subordinates and/or other
persons, by taking undue advantage of his official position, authority, relationship, connection, or influence, did
then and there willfully, unlawfully and criminally amass, accumulate and acquire by himself, directly or indirectly,
ill-gotten wealth of P4,097,804,173.17 thereby unjustly enriching himself or themselves at the expense and to the
damage of the Filipino people and the Republic of the Philippines, through any or a combination or a series of
overt or criminal acts, or similar schemes or means
Received P545,000,000.00 in the form of gift, share, percentage, kickback or any form of pecuniary benefit, by
himself and/or in connection with co-accused Charlie 'Atong' Ang, Jose 'Jinggoy' Estrada, Yolanda T. Ricaforte,
Edward Serapio, and John Does and Jane Does, in consideration of toleration or protection of illegal gambling
Diverting, receiving, misappropriating, converting or misusing directly or indirectly, for his or their personal
gain and benefit, public funds of P130,000,000.00, more or less, representing a portion of P200,000,000.00)
tobacco excise tax share allocated for the province of Ilocos Sur under R.A. No. 7171, by himself and/or in
connivance with co-accused Charlie 'Atong' Ang, Alma Alfaro, John Doe a.k.a. Eleuterio Ramos Tan or Mr. Uy, Jane
Doe a.k.a. Delia Rajas, and other John Does & Jane Does
For His Personal Gain And Benefit, The Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) To Purchase 351,878,000
Shares Of Stocks, More Or Less, And The Social Security System (SSS), 329,855,000 Shares Of Stock, More Or Less,
Of The Belle Corporation worth P1,102,965,607.50 and P744,612,450.00 respectively and by collecting or
receiving, directly or indirectly, by himself and/or in connivance with John Does and Jane Does, commissions or
percentages by reason of said purchases which became part of the deposit in the equitable-pci bank under the
account name “Jose Velarde”
by unjustly enriching himself from commissions, gifts, shares, percentages, kickbacks, or any form of pecuniary
benefits, in connivance with John Does and Jane Does, P3,233,104,173.17 and depositing the same under his
account name “Jose Velarde” at the Equitable-Pci Bank
Estrada questions the constitutionality of the Plunder Law since for him:

1. it suffers from the vice of vagueness

2. it dispenses with the "reasonable doubt" standard in criminal prosecutions
3. it abolishes the element of mens rea in crimes already punishable under The Revised Penal Code
· April 4, 2001: Office of the Ombudsman filed before the Sandiganbayan 8 separate Informations, docketed
1. Crim. Case No. 26558, for violation of RA 7080, as amended by RA 7659
2. Crim. Cases Nos. 26559 to 26562, inclusive, for violation of Secs. 3, par. (a), 3, par. (a), 3, par. (e) and 3, par. (e),
of RA 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act), respectively
3. Crim. Case No. 26563, for violation of Sec. 7, par. (d), of RA 6713 (The Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards
for Public Officials and Employees)
4. Crim. Case No. 26564, for Perjury (Art. 183 of The Revised Penal Code)
5. Crim. Case No. 26565, for Illegal Use Of An Alias (CA No. 142, as amended by RA 6085)
· April 11, 2001: Estrada filed an Omnibus Motion on the grounds of lack of preliminary investigation,
reconsideration/reinvestigation of offenses and opportunity to prove lack of probable cause. - Denied
· April 25, 2001: Sandiganbayan issued a Resolution in Crim. Case No. 26558 finding that a probable cause for
the offense of plunder exists to justify the issuance of warrants for the arrest of the accused
· June 14, 2001: Estrada moved to quash the Information in Crim. Case No. 26558 on the ground that the facts
alleged therein did NOT constitute an indictable offense since the law on which it was based was unconstitutional
for vagueness and that the Amended Information for Plunder charged more than 1 offense – Denied
· Estrada filed a petition for certiorari are:
1. The Plunder Law is unconstitutional for being vague
2. The Plunder Law requires less evidence for proving the predicate crimes of plunder and therefore violates the
rights of the accused to due process
3. Whether Plunder as defined in RA 7080 is a malum prohibitum, and if so, whether it is within the power of
Congress to so classify it

3. W/N the Plunder Law is a malum prohibitum

3. NO
· plunder is a malum in se which requires proof of criminal intent (mens rea)
o Any person who participated with the said public officer in the commission of an offense contributing to the
crime of plunder shall likewise be punished for such offense.
o In the imposition of penalties, the degree of participation and the attendance of mitigating and extenuating
circumstances, as provided by the Revised Penal Code, shall be considered by the court.
§ indicates quite clearly that mens rea is an element of plunder since the degree of responsibility of the offender
is determined by his criminal intent
o The legislative declaration in R.A. No. 7659 that plunder is a heinous offense implies that it is a malum in se. For
when the acts punished are inherently immoral or inherently wrong, they are mala in se and it does not matter
that such acts are punished in a special law, especially since in the case of plunder the predicate crimes are mainly
mala in se

FACTS: Vicente C. Rivera, then DOTC Secretary, and petitioner Henry Go, Chairman and President of PIATCO, were
charged with violation of Section 3(g) of RA 3019, also known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Go, in
relation to the voided 1997 Concession Agreement and the Amended and Restated Concession Agreement (ARCA)
entered into by the government with Philippine International Air Terminals Co., Inc (PIATCO).

Petitioner Go contended that it was error to charge him with the violation given that he was not a public officer, a
necessary element of the offense under Sec 3(g) of RA 3019. He further assert that conspiracy by a private party
with a public officer is chargeable only with the offense under Sec3(e).

Whether or not Petitioner Go, a private person, may be charged with violation of Sec 3(g) of RA 3019.

RULING: YES. The application of the anti-graft law extends to both public officers and private persons.
As early as in 1970, through the erudite Justice J.B.L. Reyes in Luciano v. Estrella,15 the Court had ascertained the
scope of Section 3(g) of RA 3019 as applying to both public officers and private persons:

x x x [T]he act treated thereunder [referring to Section 3(g) of RA 3019] partakes the nature of malum prohibitum;
it is the commission of that act as defined by law, not the character or effect thereof, that determines whether or
not the provision has been violated. And this construction would be in consonance with the announced purpose
for which Republic Act 3019 was enacted, which is the repression of certain acts of public officers and private
persons constituting graft or corrupt practices act or which may lead thereto.

FACTS: The case began as a simple altercation between the daughter of accused George Bongalon, Mary Rose Ann,
and the son of private complainant Rolando Dela Cruz, Jayson, both minor children.

During a religious procession in Legazpi City, Mary Rose Ann threw stones at Jayson and called him “sissy” as he
and his brother passed by the front of the Bongalon residence. In the belief however that it was his daughter who
was being harmed, the accused confronted Jayson and struck him on the back and slapped him on the face.

Outraged by the acts committed against his son, Jayson’s father filed a criminal complaint against Bongalon and
the latter was eventually tried and convicted for the crime of child abuse, which carried a minimum penalty of six
years imprisonment. The Court, on appeal, modified the conviction to Slight Physical Injuries.

RULING: Although we affirm the factual findings of fact by the RTC and the CA to the effect that the petitioner
struck Jayson at the back with his hand and slapped Jayson on the face, we disagree with their holding that his acts
constituted child abuse within the purview of the above-quoted provisions. The records did not establish beyond
reasonable doubt that his laying of hands on Jayson had been intended to debase the "intrinsic worth and dignity"
of Jayson as a human being, or that he had thereby intended to humiliate or embarrass Jayson. The records
showed the laying of hands on Jayson to have been done at the spur of the moment and in anger, indicative of his
being then overwhelmed by his fatherly concern for the personal safety of his own minor daughters who had just
suffered harm at the hands of Jayson and Roldan. With the loss of his self-control, he lacked that specific intent to
debase, degrade or demean the intrinsic worth and dignity of a child as a human being that was so essential in the
crime of child abuse.

In Oct 2007, petitioner was officially disqualified to run for a congressional seat in the May 2007 election because
of a Sandiganbayan decision rendered against him in 2005 involving a crime, allegedly, of moral turpitude.

The Comelec likewise rendered the issue raised by petitioner as moot since the latter lost in the said election.
Comelec disqualified petitioner in view of the petitioner’s conviction.

The Court ruled that the crime for which petitioner was convicted in Sandiganbayan in 2005 did not involve moral

As found in the Sandiganbayan, petitioner, then Mayor of Valencia, did not use his influence, authority or power to
gain pecuniary or financial interest in the cockpit. Second, while possession of business and pecuniary interest in a
cockpit licensed by the local government unit is expressly prohibited by the present LGC, however, its illegality
does not mean that violation thereof necessarily involves moral turpitude or makes such possession of interest
inherently immoral

The morality of gambling is not a justiciable issue. Gambling is not illegal per se. It was held that it was not for the
judiciary to settle questions which is for other branches of the government to deal with.

Being so, the Court reversed the Comelec’s decision of disqualifying petitioner. The case was not moot since the
resolution of which would determine petitioner’s qualification in future elections.


Appellant was charged with the crime of Other Acts of Child Abuse in an Information[6] dated August 29, 2001
which reads:

The undersigned, Second Assistant Provincial Prosecutor, hereby accuses Leonilo Sanchez alias Nilo of Lajog, Clarin,
Bohol of the crime of Other Acts of Child Abuse, committed as follows:

That on or about the 2nd day of September, 2000 in the municipality of Clarin, province of Bohol, Philippines, and
within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, acting as a Family Court, the above-named accused, with intent to
abuse, exploit and/or to inflict other conditions prejudicial to the child's development, did then and there willfully,
unlawfully and feloniously abuse physically one [VVV],[7] a sixteen (16) year old minor, by hitting her thrice in the
upper part of her legs, and which acts are prejudicial to the child-victim's development which acts are not covered
by the Revised Penal Code, as amended, but the same are covered by Art. 59, par. 8 of P.D. No. 603 as amended;
to the damage and prejudice of the offended party in the amount to be proved during the trial.

The appellant argues that the injuries inflicted by him were minor in nature that it is not prejudicial to the child-
victim’s development and therefore P.D. No. 603 is not applicable and he should be charged under the Revised
Penal Code for slight physical injuries.

Whether or not P.D. 603 as amended is applicable to the case at hand.


In this case, the applicable laws are Article 59 of P.D. No. 603 and Section 10(a) of R.A. No. 7610. Section 10(a) of
R.A. No. 7610 provides:

SECTION 10. Other Acts of Neglect, Abuse, Cruelty or Exploitation and Other Conditions Prejudicial to the Child's
Development. —

(a) Any person who shall commit any other acts of child abuse, cruelty or exploitation or be responsible for
other conditions prejudicial to the child's development including those covered by Article 59 of Presidential Decree
No. 603, as amended, but not covered by the Revised Penal Code, as amended, shall suffer the penalty of prision
mayor in its minimum period.

As gleaned from the foregoing, the provision punishes not only those enumerated under Article 59 of Presidential
Decree No. 603, but also four distinct acts, i.e., (a) child abuse, (b) child cruelty, (c) child exploitation and (d) being
responsible for conditions prejudicial to the child’s development. The Rules and Regulations of the questioned
statute distinctly and separately defined child abuse, cruelty and exploitation just to show that these three acts are
different from one another and from the act prejudicial to the child’s development. Contrary to petitioner’s
assertion, an accused can be prosecuted and be convicted under Section 10(a), Article VI of Republic Act No. 7610
if he commits any of the four acts therein. The prosecution need not prove that the acts of child abuse, child
cruelty and child exploitation have resulted in the prejudice of the child because an act prejudicial to the
development of the child is different from the former acts.

Moreover, it is a rule in statutory construction that the word “or” is a disjunctive term signifying dissociation and
independence of one thing from other things enumerated. It should, as a rule, be construed in the sense which it
ordinarily implies. Hence, the use of “or” in Section 10(a) of Republic Act No. 7610 before the phrase “be
responsible for other conditions prejudicial to the child’s development” supposes that there are four punishable
acts therein. First, the act of child abuse; second, child cruelty; third, child exploitation; and fourth, being
responsible for conditions prejudicial to the child’s development. The fourth penalized act cannot be interpreted,
as petitioner suggests, as a qualifying condition for the three other acts, because an analysis of the entire context
of the questioned provision does not warrant such construal.

Appellant contends that, after proof, the act should not be considered as child abuse but merely as slight physical
injuries defined and punishable under Article 266 of the Revised Penal Code. Appellant conveniently forgets that
when the incident happened, VVV was a child entitled to the protection extended by R.A. No. 7610, as mandated
by the Constitution. As defined in the law, child abuse includes physical abuse of the child, whether the same is
habitual or not. The act of appellant falls squarely within this definition. We, therefore, cannot accept appellant's

Acts committed contrary to the provisions of Section 10(a) in relation to Sections 3(a) and 3(b) No. 1 of Rep. Act
No. 7610 and Sec. 59(8) of PD 603, amended.

Short Version:
Appellant was charged guilty of illegal recruitment and estafa. Conviction for these various offenses under
the Labor Code does not bar the punishment of the offender for estafa. Illegal recruitment is a malum prohibitum
offense where criminal intent of the accused is not necessary for conviction while estafa is malum in se which
requires criminal intent to warrant conviction.

1. Appellant was indicted in eleven separate informations for estafa under Article 315, paragraph 2(1), of the
Revised Penal Code. For the violation of Article 38, in relation to Article 39, of the Labor Code, five separate
informations were also instituted against appellant on various dates.
2. Appellant pleaded not guilty to all the charges of illegal recruitment and estafa. The criminal cases filed
were raffled off to two (2) branches of the Regional Trial Court of Benguet; later, however, the cases were
consolidated at the instance of the prosecution.
3. The defense posited the theory that appellant merely assisted the complainants in applying for overseas
employment with duly accredited travel agencies for and from which she derived a commission.
a. According to the 37-year-old appellant, she used to be the liaison officer of the Friendship Recruitment
Agency from 1983 to 1986. In that capacity, she would submit to the POEA "contracts for processing job orders for
applicants" and assist applicants prior to their departure at the airport.
b. When the licensed agency closed in 1986, she went to Baguio where she engaged in the purchase and
sale of vegetables and flowers. Even then, however, she would not hesitate extending help to applicants for
overseas employment by recommending licensed agencies which could assist said applicants in going abroad. She
named the Dynasty Travel and Tours and the Mannings International as such licensed agencies.
4. The trial court rendered its decision finding appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crimes
charged. It found implausible appellant's claim that she was merely an agent of Dynasty Travel and Tours and/or
Maritess Tapia and Carol Cornelio.
5. Appellant Antonine B. Saley, a.k.a. Annie B. Saley, seeks a reversal of the verdict finding her guilty beyond
reasonable doubt of eleven counts of estafa punishable under the Revised Penal Code and six counts of illegal
recruitment, one committed in large scale, proscribed by the Labor Code.

1) Whether the trial court had erred in giving credence to the testimonies of the complaining witnesses and
in finding her guilty of the crimes charged? (NO)

The Decision finding appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crimes of illegal recruitment, illegal
recruitment in large scale and estafa is hereby AFFIRMED.

1. The Court agrees with the trial court that appellant, indeed, violated the law against illegal recruitment.
• Art. 38 (a) of the Labor Code considers illegal any recruitment activity "undertaken by non-licensees or
non-holders of authority."
• Illegal recruitment is committed when two elements concur:
o That the offender has no valid license or authority required by law to enable one to lawfully engage in
recruitment and placement of workers; and
o That the offender undertakes either any activity within the meaning of recruitment and placement
defined under Article 13(b), or any prohibited practices enumerated under Article 34. 46
• Altogether, the evidence against appellant has established beyond any discernible shadow of doubt that
appellant is indeed guilty of illegal recruitment on various counts.
• Being neither a licensee nor a holder of authority to recruit, appellant must suffer under Article 39(c) of
the Labor Code the penalty of imprisonment of not less than four years nor more than eight years or a fine of not
less than P20,000.00 nor more than P100,000.00 or both such imprisonment and fine, at the discretion of the
• In imposing the penalty, the provisions of the Revised Penal Code on the application of the circumstances
that could modify the criminal liability of an accused cannot be considered, these provisions being inapplicable to
special laws.
2. Defendant is also guilty of estafa.
• Conviction for these various offenses under the Labor Code does not bar the punishment of the offender
for estafa.
o Illegal recruitment is a malum prohibitum offense where criminal intent of the accused is not necessary
for conviction while estafa is malum in se which requires criminal intent to warrant conviction.
• Under Article 315, paragraph 2(a), of the Revised Penal Code, the elements of the offense (estafa) are that
(1) the accused has defrauded another by abuse of confidence or by means of deceit and (2) damage or prejudice
capable of pecuniary estimation is caused to the offended party or third person. Clearly, these elements have
sufficiently been shown in the cases under review.
• It would appear that of the seven complainants for illegal recruitment in large scale, only five of them filed
separate charges of estafa against appellant. Accordingly, appellant was only and could only be held liable for five
counts of estafa arising from the charge of illegal recruitment in large scale.
• On November 10, 1988 Martin Simon y Sunga was charged with a violation of Section 4, Article 2 of R.A.
No. 6425 (Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972)
o Alleging that on October 22, 1988 he sold 4 tea bags of marijuana to a Narcotic Command (NARCOM) in a
sum of PHP40
• On March 2, 1989 he was arraigned with counsel following his escape from Camp Olivas, San Fernando,
o Appellant pleaded NOT GUILTY
Voluntarily waived his right to a pre-trial conference
• A NARCOM operative informed the police of illegal drug activities of ALYAS PUSA. Capt. Francisco
Bustamante (Commanding Officer of the 3rd Narcotics Regional Unit) formed a team to bust appellant
o Lopez was handed 2 marijuana bags which cost a total of PHP40
o Lopez signaled the team with a scratch on the head and they busted the appellant
o Pfc. Villacruz corroborated Lopez’ testimony
o Sgt. Domingo Pejoro conducted the custodial investigation
He apprised the rights of Simon: “You have the right to remain silent, etc.”
Simon orally waived his right to counsel
Prepared “Exhibit G”, The Receipt of Property Seized/Confiscated
o Dr. Pedro Clara examined the appellant
Normal except for high blood pressure
No physical injuries
Appellant had gastrointestinal pains due to history of peptic ulcer
• Appellant’s side of the story
o He was told that he was a pusher on a jeep ride with the officers and forced to sign papers. He was
punched in the stomach when he refused to do so.
o Admitted that he escaped from the NARCOM office BUT it was because of the maltreatment
Went to his uncle’s house (Bienvenido Sunga)
Confined in the hospital for 3 days
• Appellant’s brother (Norberto Simon) testified that his brother was in the hospital that was likely due to
his peptic ulcer
o Confirmed by Dr. Evelyn Gomez-Aguas
• On December 4, 1989, the trial court convicted the appellant for a violation of the Dangerous Drug Act
o Penalty = Life imprisonment, fine of PHP20,000, and pay the costs
o 4 tea bags of marijuana were confiscated by the Government
• Appellant was caught in flagrante delicto engaging in the illegal sale of prohibited drugs. Thus, it is unlikely
that he was set-up and more likely that he committed the crime.

1. Whether or not the appellant is guilty of selling prohibited drugs and having possession. YES.
2. Whether or not the Indeterminate Sentence Law is applicable to the case. YES.

1. YES.
a. Dangerous Drugs Act - punishes any person who unless authorized by law, shall sell, administer, deliver,
give away to another, distribute, dispatch in transit or transport any prohibited drug, or shall act as a broker in any
of such transactions
i. To sustain a conviction for selling prohibited drugs, the sale must be clearly and unmistakably established.
ii. One cannot sell the drugs without first having possession over it.
b. No law or jurisprudence requires that an arrest or seizure, to be valid, be witnessed by a relative, a
barangay official or any other civilian, or be accompanied by the taking or pictures.
2. YES.
a. It is indeterminate in the sense that after serving the MINIMUM, the convict may be released on parole,
or if he is not fitted for release, he shall continue serving his sentence until the end of the MAXIMUM.
b. Drug offenses are not included in nor has appellant committed any act, which would put him within the
exceptions to said law, and the penalty to be imposed does not involve reclusion perpetua to death. The
Indeterminate Sentence Law is a legal and social measure of compassion, and should be liberally interpreted in
favor of the accused.



In 1989, spouses Adronico and Evangeline Ladonga, petitioner, became the regular customer of Alfredo
Oculam in his pawnshop. Sometime in May 1990, the Ladonga spouses obtained a loan from him, guaranteed by
check of United Coconut Planters Bank, issued by Adronico. On last week of April 1990 and during the first week of
May 1990 the spouses obtained additional loan guaranteed by UCPD. And between May and June 1990, the
spouses obtained the third loan guaranteed by UCPD. The three checks bounced upon presentment for the reason
that the account was closed. When the spouses failed to redeem the check, despite repeated demands, Oculam
filed a criminal complaint against them.
While admitting that the checks issued by Adronico bounced because there was no sufficient deposit or the
account was closed, the spouses claim that the checks were issued only to guarantee the obligation, with an
agreement that Oculam should not encash the checks when they mature, and, that petitioner is not a signatory of
the checks and had no participation in the issuance thereof.


Whether or not the petitioner, who was not the issuer of the three checks that bounced, could be held liable
for violation of Batas Pambansa Bilang 22 as conspirator.


Article 8 of the Revised Penal Code provides that “a conspiracy exist when two or more persons come to an
agreement concerning the commission of a felony and decide to commit it.” To be held liable guilty as co-principal
by reason of conspiracy, the accused must be shown to have perform an overt act in pursuance or furtherance of
the complicity.
It was not proven by direct evidence; petitioner was merely present at the time of the issuance of the checks.
However, this inference cannot be stretched to mean concurrence with the criminal design. Conspiracy must be
established, not by conjectures, but by positive and conclusive evidence.


ESC Transport hired Luisito Bustinera as a taxi driver. It was agreed that appellant would drive the taxi from 6:00
a.m. to 11:00 p.m., after which he would return it to ESC Transport's garage and remit the boundary fee in the
amount of P780.00 per day. On December 25,1996, appellant admittedly reported for work and drove the taxi, but
he did not return it on the same day as he was supposed to. The owner of ESC reported the taxi stolen. On January
9, 1997, Bustinera's wife went to ESC Transport and revealed that the taxi had been abandoned. ESC was able to
recovered. The trial court found him guilty beyond reasonable doubt of qualified theft.


Bustinera was convicted of qualified theft under Article 310 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended for the
unlawful taking of a motor vehicle. However, Article 310 has been modified, with respect to certain vehicles, by
Republic Act No. 6539, as amended, otherwise known as "AN ACT PREVENTING AND PENALIZING CARNAPPING.
"When statutes are in pari materia or when they relate to the same person or thing, or to the same class of
persons or things, or cover the same specific or particular subject matter, or have the same purpose or object, the
rule dictates that they should be construed together. The elements of the crime of theft as provided for in Article
308 of the Revised Penal Code are: (1) that there be taking of personal property; (2) that said property belongs to
another; (3) that the taking be done with intent to gain; (4) that the taking be done without the consent of the
owner; and (5) that the taking be accomplished without the use of violence against or intimidation of persons or
force upon things. Theft is qualified when any of the following circumstances is present: (1) the theft is committed
by a domestic servant; (2) the theft is committed with grave abuse of confidence; (3) the property stolen is either a
motor vehicle, mail matter or large cattle; (4) the property stolen consists of coconuts taken from the premises of
a plantation; (5) the property stolen is fish taken from a fish pond or fishery; and (6) the property was taken on the
occasion of fire, earthquake, typhoon, volcanic eruption, or any other calamity, vehicular accident or civil
disturbance. On the other hand, Section 2 of Republic Act No.6539, as amended defines "car napping" as "the
taking, with intent to gain, of a motor vehicle belonging to another without the latter's consent, or by means of
violence against or intimidation of persons, or by using force upon things." The elements of car napping are thus:
(1) the taking of a motor vehicle which belongs to another; (2) the taking is without the consent of the owner or by
means of violence against or intimidation of persons or by using force upon things; and (3) the taking is done with
intent to gain. Car napping is essentially the robbery or theft of a motorized vehicle, the concept of unlawful taking
in theft, robbery and car napping being the same. From the foregoing, since appellant is being accused of the
unlawful taking of a Daewoo sedan, it is the anti-car napping law and not the provisions of qualified theft which
would apply

On April 18, 1999, Sharica Mari Go-Tan and Steven Tan were married. Out of this union, two female children were
born, Kyra Danielle and Kristen Denise. On January 12, 2005, barely six years into the marriage, petitioner Go-Tan
filed a petition with prayer for the issuance of a Temporary Protective Order (TPO) against Steven, in conspiracy
with respondents, were causing verbal, psychological, and economic abuses upon her in violation of Section 5,
paragraphs (e) (2) (3) (4), (h) (5) and (i) of Republic Act No. 9262.

Whether or not respondents-spouses, Perfecto and Juanita, parents-in-law of Sharica, may be included in the
petition for the issuance of a protective order, in accordance with RA 9262.


Yes, the Court ruled in favor of the petitioner. While the provisions of RA 9262 provides that the offender be ralted
or connected to the victim by marriage, former marriage, or a sexual or dating relationship, it does not preclude
the application of the principle of conspiracy under the RPC. In Section 47 of RA 9262, it has expressly provides for
the suppletory application of the RPC. Hence, legal principles developed from the Penal Code may be applied in a
supplementary capacity to crimes punished under special laws, such as RA 9262 in which the special law is silent
on a particular matter.