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CRIMINAL LAW

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1990 BAR EXAMINATION

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I.

Aki and Ben, while walking together, met Caloy. There was an altercation between Ben and Caloy so that
Ben chased and stabbed Caloy with a knife hitting his right arm thereby causing slight physical injury. Ben desisted from
further assaulting Caloy, but Aki lunged at Caloy and felled him this time with a bolo which mortally wounded Caloy.
Thus, he died.

a.) What is the criminal liability of Aki? How about that of Ben? Explain your answers.

b.) Assuming conspiracy is established, will your answer in problem (a) be the same? Explain your answer.

SUGGESTED ANSWER:

a.) Aki is liable for homicide because, while it is clear that he intentionally caused the death of Caloy,
none of the circumstances attendant to murder are present. Intent to kill is clear as Aki lunged at
Caloy, after the latter was inflicted a wound at the right arm, and gave him amortal wound.

Ben is guilty only of slight physical injuries as it is evident from the wound he inflicted upon Caloy
that he did not intend to kill the latter. Also, there was no other act on part of Ben to show such intent.

b.) No, there being no conspiracy each will be liable for their own individual act. This time both will be
liable for homicide because in conspiracy, the act of one is the act of all (People v. Damaso, G.R. Nos. L-
30116-7, 20 November 1978).

II.

Dencio, who is the Municipal Treasurer of the town was also the treasurer of a charity ball of the church. Because
he was short of payroll funds for the municipal employees, he used part of the church funds to replenish the payroll funds
with the intention of returning the same when the public funds came.

a.) Is Dencio guilty of malversation under the Revised Penal Code? State your reasons.

b.) Assuming that he failed to replenish the church funds, may he be held criminally liable thereby? Explain.

SUGGESTED ANSWER:

a.) No. The church funds used by Dencio do not constitute public funds which are the proper subject of
malversation. Neither does said funds constitute the so-called private funds, which could be the proper
subject of malversation under Article 222, Revised Penal Code which pertain to private property
placed in the custody of public officers by reason of their office.

b.) Yes, momentary use of funds, since there is defraudation, is tantamount to estafa under Article 215 of
the Revised Penal Code. This is because he received the funds in his fiduciary as treasurer and there
was temporary damage caused. Personal benefit is not an element of the crime of estafa.

III.

a.) In mercy killing, is the attending physician criminally liable for deliberately turning off the life support
system consequently costing the life of the patient? State reasons.

b.) How about in an instance when in saving the life of the mother, the doctor sacrificed the life of the unborn
child? Explain your answer.
SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) The attending physician is criminally liable. Euthanasia is not a justifying circumstance in Philippine
jurisdiction.
b.) There is no criminal liability on the part of the doctor because his acts are justified under Article 11(4)
of the revised Penal Code which provides that: “The following do not incur any criminal liability: x x x
4) any person, who in order to avoid an evil or injury, does an act which causes damage to another,
provided that the following requisites are present: First: That the evil sought to be avoided actually
exists; Second: That the injury feared be greater than that done to avoid it.; Third: That there be no
other practical and less harmful means of preventing it.”

ALTERNATIVE ANSWER:

There is no criminal liability on the part of the doctor because of his acts are justified under Article 11(5) of
the Revised Penal Code which provides that: “The following do not incur any criminal liability: x x x (5) Any
person who acts in the fulfillment of a duty or in the lawful exercise of a right or office.”

IV.

In the middle of the night, Enyong heard the footsteps of an intruder inside their house. Enyong picked up his rifle
and saw a man, Gorio, with a pistol ransacking Enyong’s personal effects in his study. He shot and killed Gorio.

a.) Is Enyong criminally liable for killing the robber Gorio? State your reasons.

b.) Suppose Enyong shot Gorio while he was running away from Enyong’s house with his television set, what is
Enyong liable for? Explain your answer.

SUGGESTED ANSWER:

a.) Enyong is not criminally liable because he was acting in defense of property rights. Under the case of
People v. Narvaez (G.R. Nos. L-33466-67, April 20, 1983, 121 SCRA 389) defense of property need not
necessarily be coupled with aggression against persons.

b.) There is criminal liability this time with the mitigating circumstance of incomplete self-defense. Under
the case of People v. Narvaez, defense of property can be availed of even when there is no assault against
a person. It is a recognized as an unlawful aggression.

V.

Rico was convicted of raping Letty, his former sweetheart, by the Regional Trial Court of Manila and he was
ordered to serve the penalty of life imprisonment, to indemnify Letty in the amount of P30,000.00 and to support their
offspring. Pending appeal in the Supreme Court, Rico died. His widow, Bernie, moved for a dismissal of the case.

a.) What is the legal effect of Rico’s death on his criminal liability? Explain your answer.

b.) How about on hid civil liability? State your reasons.

SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) The criminal liability of Rico is extinguished on the basis of Article 89 of the Revised Penal Code which
provides that: “How criminal liability is totally extinguished: 1. By the death of the convict, as to
personal penalties; and as to pecuniary penalties, liability therefor is extinguished only when the death
of the offender occurs before final judgment.

b.) The civil liability of Rico survives. (People v. Sendavdiego, Hanuary 20, 1978, 74 O.G. 4371: People v.
Tirol, G.R. No. L-30588, January 31, 1981l People v. Naboa, et. al., 132 SCRA 410).

VI.
a.) Lando and Marco are candidates in the local elections. In his speeches Lando attacked his opponent Marco
alleging that he is the son of nanding, a robber and a thief who amassed his wealth through shady deals. May
Marco file a case against Lando for grave oral defamation? State your reasons.

b.) Suppose Marco also delivered a speech stating therein that he had charged Lando of estafa through
falsification in the Tanodbayan so much so that since his (Lando’s) integrity is doubtful he should not be
elected. May Marco also be held liable for grave oral defamation?

SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) Marco cannot file a case for grave oral defamation. If at all, he may file a case for light slander. In the
case of People v. Laroga, (40 O.G. 123), it was held that defamation in a political meeting, when feelings
are running high and people could not think clearly, only amount to light slander.

b.) No, Marco cannot be held liable for grave oral defamation considering that Lando was merely stating
what appears in a public record, referring to the exercise of a legal right to file suit. Moreover, his
statement against Marco pertains to a person who is running for public office wherein a wider latitude
is given.

VII.

Oscar owns and operates a gift and jewelry shop. Pilar sold to him for P1,000.00 a five (5) carat diamond ring
which she stole.

a.) May Oscar be held criminally liable under the Anti-Fencing Law (P.D. No. 1612)? Explain your answer.

b.) How can Oscar acquire immunity from criminal prosecution for purchasing the diamond ring from Pilar and
thus enable him to tsell the same to the general public for a profit?

SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) Yes, he is liable for fencing. The price is unconscionable. This shows that he would have known of the
fact that the ring was stolen. Section 2 of P.D. 1612., the Anti-Fencing Law of 1979, provides that: a
“Fencing” is the act of any person who, with intent to gain for himself or for another, shall buy, receive
x x x, sell or dispose of, or shall buy and sell, or in any other manner deal in any article x x x of value
which he knows, or should be known to him, to have been derived from proceeds of the crime of
robbery or theft.”

b.) Oscar should secure a clearance/permit to sell the second-hand ring from the proper INP station
commander pursuant to Section 6, P.D. 1612. The said section states that any person who fails to secure
the clearance or permit, upon conviction, shall be punished as a fence.

VIII.

Rina, who was a suspended Clerk of Court, was convicted of malversation and was sentenced to imprisonment, to
pay a fine of P5,000.00 and to indemnify the government in the same amount. Pending appeal in the Court of Appeals, she
was extended an absolute, pardon by the President. Thus, she applied for reinstatement, payment of backwages, and
absolution from payment of the fine and indemnify.

Decide the issue with reasons.

SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

Rina cannot apply for reinstatement, etc. as there was no effective pardon by the President. It is basic that
pardon can only be granted after final conviction. (Barrioquinto v. Fernandez, 85 Phil. 642).

IX.

a.) Melda, who is the private secretary of Judge Tolits Naya, was persuaded by a litigant, Jumbo, to have his case
calendared as early as possible for a consideration of P500.00. May she held criminally liable? Explain your
answer.

b.) What will be the criminal liability of Melda if she volunteered to persuade Judge Tolits Naya to rule in
Jumbo’s favor without asking any consideration? Explain your answer.
SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) The answer would depend/be qualified by the implication of the phrase “to have this case
calendared as early as possible”.

If the phrase is interrupted as an unjust act and in violation of the rule to give priority to the older
cases, then she would be liable under direct bribery for an act which does not constitute a crime but is
unjust. He may also be held liable under Section 3(e) of R.A. 3019, the Anti-Graft and Corrupt
Practices Act, as amended: “x x x giving any private party any unwanted benefits.”

If you interpret the phrase as a non-violation of the rules and regulations then he can only be held
liable for direct bribery.

b.) Melda is not criminally liable because the act of volunteering to persuade is not a criminal act. It is
the act of persuading that is considered a criminal act. The act does not fall under Article 210 of the
Revised Penal Code on Direct Brivery nor does it fall under Article 211 of the RPC on Indirect Bribery.
Neither does it fall under the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. Section 3(a) of R.A. 3019 refers to
acts of persuading another public official to violate rules and regulations.

X.

Exidor issued a check in payment of goods and delivered to him by Virginia. Unfortunately the check bounced for
lack of sufficient funds.

a.) What is the criminal liability of Exidor? Explain your answer.

b.) Suppose the bouncing check was postdated, will your answer be the same? State your reasons.

SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) Exidor is liable under the Bouncing Checks Law (B.P. 22) and for Estafa under Article 315, par. 2(d),
Revised Penal Code.

b.) He will only be liable under the Bouncing Checks Law. (B.P. 22).

XI.

Amy was apprehended and arrested by Patrolman Bart for illegal parking. She was detained at the police precint,
underwent investigation, and released only after 48 hours.

a.) Patrolman Bart liable for any offense? Explain your answer.

b.) Suppose Amy resisted the arrest and grappled with patrolman Bart, is she criminally liable thereby? State
your reasons.

SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) Patrolman Bart is liable for slight disobedience under Article 151 of the Revised Penal Code-Delay on
the Delivery of Detained Persons to the Proper Judicial Authorities.

b.) She is criminally liable for slight disobedience under Article 151 of the Revised Penal Code-Resistance
and disobedience to a person in authority or the agents of such person.

XII.

a.) Carlos was charged and convicted of murder. He was sentenced to life imprisonment and to indemnify the
offended party in the amount of P30,000.00. He sought a reconsideration of the penalty on the ground that he
should be entitled to the benefits of the Indeterminate Sentence Law. Decide with reasons.

b.) Suppose that instead of filing a motion of reconsideration he applies for probation. If you were the judge, will
you grant the same? Explain your answer.

SUGGESTED ANSWER:

a.) Carlos is not entitled to avail of the Indeterminate Sentence Law because Section 2 of said Law
specifically disqualifies and disallows application thereof to persons sentenced to life imprisonment.
b.) I will not grant the application for probation as it is clear in the Probation Law that the benefits thereof
shall not apply to those sentenced to serve a maximum term of imprisonment of more than six (6) years.
(P.D. 1990).

XIII.

Maloling is a public official who resigned from the service on February 1, 1984. On February 15, 1990, the
Solicitor General filed a petition in court for the forfeiture of the property of Maloling which was allegedly unlawfully
acquired.

a.) If you were the counsel of Maloling, what defense or defenses would you interpose? Explain your answer.

b.) Besides property unlawfully acquired found to be in the name of Maloling, what are the other properties not
in his name which may nevertheless be considered unlawfully acquired? Explain your answer.

SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) I would interpose the defense of prescription as the right to file a petition for forfeiture under Republic
Act No. 1379 Section 2 prescribes in four (4) years from the date of resignation.

b.) Property which may still be considered as unlawfully acquire, though not in the name of Maloling at
the time of filing of the petition for forfeiture, shall include:

1) Property unlawfully acquired by the respondent but its ownership concealed by being recorded in
the name of, or held by, the respondent’s spouse, ascendants, descendants, relatives or any other
person; and

2) Property unlawfully acquired by the respondent, but transferred by him to another person/s. (R.A.
1379 Section 1(b)).

XIV.

Rodolfo is an informer who told the police authorites that Aldo is a drug pusher. Policeman Taba then posed as a
buyer and persuaded Aldo to sell marijuana worth P10.00 to the former. Aldo agreed. He delivered the goods and so was
apprehended with the marked money. He is now prosecuted for violation of the Dangerous Drugs Act.

a.) Aldo’s defense is that he was the victim of an instigation of the police who persuaded him to sell the goods to
him. Decide the case with reasons.

SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) Aldo’s defense in untenable as what happened here was entrapment. With or without the act of
Policeman Taba, Aldo would have went on selling the marijuana to another buyer. The finding, it must
be noted, was that Aldo was continuously engaged in the act of pushing drugs. (People v. Tia, 51 O.G.
1863).

ALTERNATIVE ANSWER:

a.) This is a case of instigation because Aldo was persuaded by Policeman Taba, who was posing as buyer,
to sell Marijuana.

b.) Suppose policeman Taba told Aldo that he (Taba) has a supply of marijuana and he persuaded Aldo to sell it
to him because he (Taba) needed the money badly. Aldo succeeded in selling P20.00 worth of marijuana to
Moye. What is the criminal liability of Aldo if apprehended in the act? Explain.

SUGGESTED ANSWER:

Aldo is liable for violating the Dangerous Drugs Act. (R.A. No. 6425, as amended) in performing the act of
selling narcotics.

XV.

a.) Ka Jacinto, who is an NPA commander, was apprehended with unlicensed firearms and explosives. He was
accordingly charged with illegal possession of said firearms and explosives. He now questions the filing of
the charges on the ground that they are deemed absorbed in a separate change of rebellion filed against him.
Decide the issue.

b.) Suppose Ka Jacinto, using one of the unlicensed firearms, shot and killed his neighbor in an altercation. May
the charge of murder and illegal possession of firearms be deemed absorbed in the separate charge of
rebellion filed against him? Resolve the matter with reasons?

SUGGESTED ANSWERS:

a.) The charge of illegal possession of firearms and explosives is deemed absorbed in the crime of rebellion,
such possession being a necessary means for the perpetration of the latter crime. (Elias v. Rodriguez,
107 Phil. 659).

b.) The charges here could not be absorbed in the separate charge of rebellion as it is clear that the act of
murder with the possession of an unlicensed forearm, was not in furtherance of the rebellion.