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People vs.

Go
G.R. Number 201644 | 736 SCRA 501 | September 24, 2014 | Perlas-Bernabe, J. FACTS
Petition: Certiorari  On September 28, 2000, seven informations were filed against various
Petitioner: People of the Philippines individuals, including respondents, for allegedly committing estafa by
Respondents: Jose C. Go and Aida C. Dela Rosa falsification of commercial documents
Sections 5 & 16, Rule 110, Rules of Court; Who Must Prosecute o Accused allegedly defrauded Orient Commercial Banking
Corporation of the amount of P159,000,000.00
DOCTRINE o Criminal complaint instituted by the Philippine Deposit Insurance
 While the failure to implead an indispensable party is not per se a ground Corporation (PDIC)
for the dismissal of an action, considering that said party may still be added  After many postponements, accused were arraigned on November 13,
by order of the court, on motion of the party or on its own initiative at any 2001
stage of the action and/or such times as are just, it remains essential – as  Numerous postponements and cancellations caused by the prosecution
it is jurisdictional – that any indispensable party be impleaded in the marred the hearings; ultimately, prosecution was not able to complete its
proceedings before the court renders judgment. Absence of such presentation of evidence
indispensable party renders all subsequent actions of the court null and o Hearing even reached almost five years
void for want of authority to act, not only as to the absent parties but even o Respondents filed a Motion to Dismiss, on December 11, 2007, for
as to those present failure to prosecute and for violation of their right to speedy trial
 Court Proceedings / Procedural History
Rules of Court Provisions o RTC: Ultimately, against the accused
Section 5. Who must prosecute criminal action. - All criminal actions either commenced by  At first, dismissed the case against the accused for violating
complaint or by information shall be prosecuted under the direction and control of a public
prosecutor. In case of heavy work schedule of the public prosecutor or in the event of lack
their right to speedy trial
of public prosecutors, the private prosecutor may be authorized in writing by the Chief of  When prosecution moved for reconsideration, RTC granted
the Prosecution Office or the Regional State Prosecutor to prosecute the case subject to it in the interest of justice (criminal cases reinstated)
the approval of the court. Once so authorized to prosecute the criminal action, the private  Motion for reconsideration from accused denied
prosecutor shall continue to prosecute the case up to end of the trial even in the absence o CA: in favor of accused
of a public prosecutor, unless the authority is revoked or otherwise withdrawn.  A copy of the petition for certiorari was served only on private
The crimes of adultery and concubinage shall not be prosecuted except upon a
complaint filed by the offended spouse. The offended party cannot institute criminal complainant and not the People of the Philippines (through
prosecution without including the guilty parties, if both are alive, nor, in any case, if the the OSG)
offended party has consented to the offense or pardoned the offenders.  OSG was not even impleaded as party to the case
The offenses of seduction, abduction and acts of lasciviousness shall not be prosecuted  CA reversed RTC Decision on its September 28, 2011
upon a complaint filed by the offended party of her parents, grandparents or guardian, nor, Decision, saying that right to speedy trial and right against
in any case, if the offender has been expressly pardoned by any of them. If the offended
party dies or becomes incapacitated before she can file the complaint, and she has no
double jeopardy of accused were violated
known parents, grandparents or guardian, the State shall initiate the criminal action in her  No order to implead the People
behalf.  On reconsideration, through an April 17, 2012 Resolution,
The offended party, even if a minor, has the right to initiate the prosecution of the CA denied
offenses of seduction, abduction and acts of lasciviousness independently of her parents, o PDIC transmitted copies of the CA Decision to the OSG
grandparents, or guardian, unless she is incompetent or incapable of doing so. Where the
offended party, who is a minor, fails to file the complaint, her parents, grandparents, or
 OSG filed the petition for certiorari with the SC, imputing
guardian may file the same. The right to file the action granted to parents, grandparents, or grave abuse of discretion on CA, that the People was neither
guardian shall be exclusive of all other persons and shall be exercised successively in the impleaded nor served a copy of said petition, thereby
order herein provided, except as stated in the preceding paragraph. violating its right to due process of law
No criminal action for defamation which consists in the imputation of any of the offenses
mentioned above shall be brought except at the instance of and upon complaint filed by
the offended party.
ISSUE
The prosecution for violation of special laws shall be governed by the provision thereof. 1. W/N the People, through the OSG, should have been impleaded in the
Sec. 16. Intervention of the offended party in criminal action. – Where the civil action for case – YES
recovery of civil liability is instituted in the criminal action pursuant to Rule 111, the
offended party may intervene by counsel in the prosecution of the offense. RULING & RATIO
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1. The People, through the OSG, should have been impleaded first
a. Court: The certiorari petition before the CA should not have been
acted upon by the CA without the People, as represented by the
OSG, having first been impleaded; this stems from the recognition
that the People is an indispensable party to the proceedings
b. Vda de Manguerra v Risos
i. Respondents failed to implead the People. Because of
this, the petition was defective. As provided in Section 5,
Rule 110, Rules of Court, “all criminal actions are
prosecuted under the direction and control of the public
prosecutor.” Therefore, it behooved petitioners to implead
the People of the Philippines, through the OSG, as
respondent in the CA case to enable the People to
comment on the petition.
c. While the failure to implead an indispensable party is not per se a
ground for the dismissal of an action, considering that said party
may still be added by order of the court, on motion of the party or
on its own initiative at any stage of the action and/or such times
as are just, it remains essential – as it is jurisdictional – that any
indispensable party be impleaded in the proceedings before the
court renders judgment. Absence of such indispensable party
renders all subsequent actions of the court null and void for want
of authority to act, not only as to the absent parties but even as to
those present
d. Lotte Philippines Co, Inc v Dela Cruz
i. An indispensable party is a party-in-interest without whom
no final determination can be had of an action, and who
shall be joined either as plaintiffs or defendants. The
joinder of indispensable parties is mandatory… without
the presence of indispensable parties to a suit or
proceeding, judgment of a court cannot attain real
finality…
e. Court: The CA proceeded to render judgment (September 28,
2011 Decision and April 17, 2012 Resolution) without
indispensable party (People of the Philippines, through the OSG)
having been impleaded; Decision and Resolution should be set
aside for not impleading an indispensable party to the case

DISPOSITION
 Petition granted
o CA September 28, 2011 Decision and April 17, 2012 Resolution set
aside
 Case remanded to CA, and CA ordered to implead the People of the
Philippines, through the OSG

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