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Stonehill v Diokno

Facts:

Forty-two (42) search warrants were issued at different dates against petitioners and the corporations of which they
were officers. Peace officers were directed to search the persons of the petitioners and/or their premises of their
offices, warehouses and/or residences. Books of accounts, financial records, vouchers, correspondence, receipts,
ledgers, journals, portfolios, credit journals, typewriters, and other documents and/or papers showing all business
transactions including disbursements receipts, balance sheets, and profit and loss statements and Bobbins were to be
seized. Petitioner contends that the issued search warrants were null and void as having contravened the Constitution
and the Rules of Court for, among others, it did not describe the documents, books and things to be seized
PARTICULARLY.

Issue:

Whether or not the search warrant has been validly issued.

Whether or not the seized articles may be admitted in court.

Held:

The authority of the warrants in question may be split in two major groups: (a) those found and seized in the offices of
the corporations; and (b) those found and seized in the residences of the petitioners.

The petitioners have no cause of action against the contested warrants on the first major group. This is because
corporations have their respective personalities, separate and distinct from the personality of their officers, directors
and stockholders. The legality of a seizure can be contested only by the party whose rights have been impaired, the
objection to an unlawful search and seizure purely being personal cannot be availed by third parties.

As to the second major group, two important questions need be settled: (1) whether the search warrants in question,
and the searches and seizures made under authority thereof, are valid or not; and (2) if the answer is no, whether said
documents, papers and things may be used in evidence against petitioners.

The Constitution protects the rights of the people from unreasonable searches and seizure. Two points must be stressed
in connection to this constitutional mandate: (1) no warrant shall be issued except if based upon probable cause
determined personally by the judge by the manner set in the provision; and (2) the warrant shall describe the things to
be seized with particularly.

In the present case, no specific offense has been alleged in the warrant’s application. The averments of the offenses
committed were abstract and therefore, would make it impossible for judges to determine the existence of probable
cause. Such impossibility of such determination naturally hinders the issuance of a valid search warrant.

The Constitution also requires the things to be seized described with particularity. This is to eliminate general warrants.

The Court held that the warrants issued for the search of three residences of petitioners are null and void.

Soliven vs Makasiar

● While the President is immune from suit, she may not be prevented from instituting suit. The privilege of immunity
from suit, pertains to the President by virtue of the office and may be invoked only by the holder of the office; not by
any other person in the President's behalf.

● Due process of law does not require that the respondent in a criminal case actually file his counter-affidavits before
the preliminary investigation is deemed completed. All that is required is that the respondent be given the opportunity
to submit counter-affidavits if he is so minded.

● What the Constitution underscores is the exclusive and personal responsibility of the issuing judge to satisfy himself of
the existence of probable cause. In satisfying himself of the existence of probable cause for the issuance of a warrant of
arrest, the judge is not required to personally examine the complainant and his witnesses.
Facts:

Pres. Cory Aquino filed a criminal complaint for libel against Beltran. Beltran argues that "the reasons which necessitate
presidential immunity from suit impose a correlative disability to file suit". He contends that if criminal proceedings
ensue by virtue of the President's filing of her complaint-affidavit, she may subsequently have to be a witness for the
prosecution, bringing her under the trial court's jurisdiction. This would in an indirect way defeat her privilege of
immunity from suit, as by testifying on the witness stand, she would be exposing herself to possible contempt of court
or perjury. Beltran also contends that he could not be held liable for libel because of the privileged character of the
publication. He also says that to allow the libel case to proceed would produce a “chilling effect” on press freedom.

Issues:

(1) whether or not petitioners were denied due process when informations for libel were filed against them although
the finding of the existence of a prima facie case was still under review by the Secretary of Justice and, subsequently, by
the President;

(2) whether or not the constitutional rights of Beltran were violated when respondent RTC judge issued a warrant for his
arrest without personally examining the complainant and the witnesses, if any, to determine probable cause; and

(3) whether or not the President of the Philippines, under the Constitution, may initiate criminal proceedings against the
petitioners through the filing of a complaint-affidavit.

Held:

(1) The allegation of denial of due process of law in the preliminary investigation is negated by the fact that instead of
submitting his counter- affidavits, he filed a "Motion to Declare Proceedings Closed," in effect waiving his right to refute
the complaint by filing counter-affidavits. Due process of law does not require that the respondent in a criminal case
actually file his counter-affidavits before the preliminary investigation is deemed completed. All that is required is that
the respondent be given the opportunity to submit counter-affidavits if he is so minded.

(2) What the Constitution underscores is the exclusive and personal responsibility of the issuing judge to satisfy himself
of the existence of probable cause. In satisfying himself of the existence of probable cause for the issuance of a warrant
of arrest, the judge is not required to personally examine the complainant and his witnesses. Following established
doctrine and procedure, he shall: (1) personally evaluate the report and the supporting documents submitted by the
fiscal regarding the existence of probable cause and, on the basis thereof, issue a warrant of arrest; or (2) if on the basis
thereof he finds no probable cause, he may disregard the fiscal's report and require the submission of supporting
affidavits of witnesses to aid him in arriving at a conclusion as to the existence of probable cause.

Sound policy dictates this procedure, otherwise judges would be unduly laden with the preliminary examination and
investigation of criminal complaints instead of concentrating on hearing and deciding cases filed before their courts.

(3) The rationale for the grant to the President of the privilege of immunity from suit is to assure the exercise of
Presidential duties and functions free from any hindrance or distraction, considering that being the Chief Executive of
the Government is a job that, aside from requiring all of the office holder's time, also demands undivided attention.

But this privilege of immunity from suit, pertains to the President by virtue of the office and may be invoked only by the
holder of the office; not by any other person in the President's behalf. Thus, an accused in a criminal case in which the
President is complainant cannot raise the presidential privilege as a defense to prevent the case from proceeding against
such accused.

Moreover, there is nothing in our laws that would prevent the President from waiving the privilege. Thus, if so minded
the President may shed the protection afforded by the privilege and submit to the court's jurisdiction. The choice of
whether to exercise the privilege or to waive it is solely the President's prerogative. It is a decision that cannot be
assumed and imposed by any other person.

(4) Court reiterates that it is not a trier of facts. Court finds no basis at this stage to rule on the “chilling effect” point.
(Beltran vs. Makasiar, G.R. No. 82585 November 14, 1988)
G.R. No. 81510 March 14, 1990

HORTENCIA SALAZAR, petitioner,

vs.

HON. TOMAS D. ACHACOSO, in his capacity as Administrator of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, and
FERDIE MARQUEZ, respondents.

FACTS: This concerns the validity of the power of the Secretary of Labor to issue warrants of arrest and seizure under
Article 38 of the Labor Code, prohibiting illegal recruitment.

On October 21, 1987, Rosalie Tesoro filed with the POEA a complaint against petitioner. Having ascertained that the
petitioner had no license to operate a recruitment agency, public respondent Administrator Tomas D. Achacoso issued
his challenged CLOSURE AND SEIZURE ORDER.

The POEA brought a team to the premises of Salazar to implement the order. There it was found that petitioner was
operating Hannalie Dance Studio. Before entering the place, the team served said Closure and Seizure order on a certain
Mrs. Flora Salazar who voluntarily allowed them entry into the premises. Mrs. Flora Salazar informed the team that
Hannalie Dance Studio was accredited with Moreman Development (Phil.). However, when required to show
credentials, she was unable to produce any. Inside the studio, the team chanced upon twelve talent performers —
practicing a dance number and saw about twenty more waiting outside, The team confiscated assorted costumes which
were duly receipted for by Mrs. Asuncion Maguelan and witnessed by Mrs. Flora Salazar.

A few days after, petitioner filed a letter with the POEA demanding the return of the confiscated properties. They
alleged lack of hearing and due process, and that since the house the POEA raided was a private residence, it was
robbery.

On February 2, 1988, the petitioner filed this suit for prohibition. Although the acts sought to be barred are already fait
accompli, thereby making prohibition too late, we consider the petition as one for certiorari in view of the grave public
interest involved.

ISSUE: May the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (or the Secretary of Labor) validly issue warrants of
search and seizure (or arrest) under Article 38 of the Labor Code?

HELD: PETITION GRANTED. it is only a judge who may issue warrants of search and arrest. Neither may it be done by a
mere prosecuting body.

We reiterate that the Secretary of Labor, not being a judge, may no longer issue search or arrest warrants. Hence, the
authorities must go through the judicial process. To that extent, we declare Article 38, paragraph (c), of the Labor Code,
unconstitutional and of no force and effect.

Moreover, the search and seizure order in question, assuming, ex gratia argumenti, that it was validly issued, is clearly in
the nature of a general warrant. We have held that a warrant must identify clearly the things to be seized, otherwise, it
is null and void

For the guidance of the bench and the bar, we reaffirm the following principles:

Under Article III, Section 2, of the l987 Constitution, it is only judges, and no other, who may issue warrants of arrest and
search:

The exception is in cases of deportation of illegal and undesirable aliens, whom the President or the Commissioner of
Immigration may order arrested, following a final order of deportation, for the purpose of deportation.

Mata vs. Bayona

G.R. No. L-50720, 26 March 1984

FACTS: Soriano Mata was accused under Presidential Decree (PD) 810, as amended by PD 1306, the information against
him alleging that Soriano Mata offered, took and arranged bets on the Jai Alai game by “selling illegal tickets known as
‘Masiao tickets’ without any authority from the Philippine Jai Alai & Amusement Corporation or from the government
authorities concerned.” Mata claimed that during the hearing of the case, he discovered that nowhere from the records
of the said case could be found the search warrant and other pertinent papers connected to the issuance of the same,
so that he had to inquire from the City Fiscal its whereabouts, and to which inquiry Judge Josephine K. Bayona, presiding
Judge of the City Court of Ormoc replied, “it is with the court”. The Judge then handed the records to the Fiscal who
attached them to the records. This led Mata to file a motion to quash and annul the search warrant and for the return of
the articles seized, citing and invoking, among others, Section 4 of Rule 126 of the Revised Rules of Court. The motion
was denied by the Judge on 1 March 1979, stating that the court has made a thorough investigation and examination
under oath of Bernardo U. Goles and Reynaldo T. Mayote, members of the Intelligence Section of 352nd PC Co./Police
District II INP; that in fact the court made a certification to that effect; and that the fact that documents relating to the
search warrant were not attached immediately to the record of the criminal case is of no moment, considering that the
rule does not specify when these documents are to be attached to the records. Mata’s motion for reconsideration of the
aforesaid order having been denied, he came to the Supreme Court, with the petition for certiorari, praying, among
others, that the Court declare the search warrant to be invalid for its alleged failure to comply with the requisites of the
Constitution and the Rules of Court, and that all the articles confiscated under such warrant as inadmissible as evidence
in the case, or in any proceedings on the matter.

ISSUE: WON the judge must before issuing the warrant personally examine on oath or affirmation the complainant and
any witnesses he may produce and take their depositions in writing, and attach them to the record, in addition to any
affidavits presented to him?

HELD: YES. Under the Constitution “no search warrant shall issue but upon probable cause to be determined by the
Judge or such other responsible officer as may be authorized by law after examination under oath or affirmation of the
complainant and the witnesses he may produce”. More emphatic and detailed is the implementing rule of the
constitutional injunction, The Rules provide that the judge must before issuing the warrant personally examine on oath
or affirmation the complainant and any witnesses he may produce and take their depositions in writing, and attach them
to the record, in addition to any affidavits presented to him. Mere affidavits of the complainant and his witnesses are
thus not sufficient. The examining Judge has to take depositions in writing of the complainant and the witnesses he may
produce and to attach them to the record. Such written deposition is necessary in order that the Judge may be able to
properly determine the existence or nonexistence of the probable cause, to hold liable for perjury the person giving it if
it will be found later that his declarations are false. We, therefore, hold that the search warrant is tainted with illegality
by the failure of the Judge to conform with the essential requisites of taking the depositions in writing and attaching
them to the record, rendering the search warrant invalid.

Umil vs. Ramos G.R. No. 81567, July 9, 1990

Facts: on 1 February 1988, the Regional Intelligence Operations Unit of the Capital Command (RIOU-CAPCOM) received
confidential information about a member of the NPA Sparrow Unit (liquidation squad) being treated for a gunshot
wound at the St. Agnes Hospital in Roosevelt Avenue, Quezon City. Upon verification, it was found that the wounded
person, who was listed in the hospital records as Ronnie Javelon, is actually Rolando Dural, a member of the NPA
liquidation squad, responsible for the killing of two (2) CAPCOM soldiers the day before, or on 31 January 1988, in
Macanining Street, Bagong Barrio, Caloocan City. In view of this verification, Rolando Dural was transferred to the
Regional Medical Services of the CAPCOM, for security reasons. While confined thereat, or on 4 February 1988, Rolando
Dural was positively identified by eyewitnesses as the gunman who went on top of the hood of the CAPCOM mobile
patrol car, and fired at the two (2) CAPCOM soldiers seated inside the car. As a consequence of this positive
identification, Rolando Dural was referred to the Caloocan City Fiscal who conducted an inquest and thereafter filed
with the Regional Trial Court of Caloocan City an information charging Rolando Dural alias Ronnie Javelon with the crime
of “Double Murder with Assault Upon Agents of Persons in Authority.” The case was docketed therein as Criminal Case
No. C-30112 and no bail was recommended. On 15 February 1988, the information was amended to include, as
defendant, Bernardo Itucal, Jr. who, at the filing of the original information, was still unidentified. As to Rolando Dural, it
clearly appears that he was not arrested while in the act of shooting the two (2) CAPCOM soldiers aforementioned. Nor
was he arrested just after the commission of the said offense for his arrest came a day after the said shooting incident.
Seemingly, his arrest without warrant is unjustified. However, Rolando Dural was arrested for being a member of the
New Peoples Army (NPA), an outlawed subversive organization. Subversion being a continuing offense, the arrest of
Rolando Dural without warrant is justified as it can be said that he was committing an offense when arrested. The crimes
of rebellion, subversion, conspiracy or proposal to commit such crimes, and crimes or offenses committed in furtherance
thereof or in connection therewith constitute direct assaults against the State and are in the nature of continuing
crimes.
Issue: Whether an arrest and search warrant is required for the crimes of rebellion, subversion, conspiracy or proposal
to commit such crimes, and crimes or offenses committed in furtherance thereof or in connection therewith constitute
direct assaults against the State.

Held: No, the claim of the petitioners that they were initially arrested illegally is, therefore, without basis in law and in
fact. The crimes of insurrection or rebellion, subversion, conspiracy or proposal to commit such crimes, and other crimes
and offenses committed in the furtherance, on the occasion thereof, or incident thereto, or in connection therewith
under Presidential Proclamation No. 2045, are all in the nature of continuing offenses which set them apart from the
common offenses, aside from their essentially involving a massive conspiracy of nationwide magnitude. Clearly then, the
arrest of the herein detainees was well within the bounds of the law and existing jurisprudence in our jurisdiction. The
arrest of persons involved in the rebellion whether as its fighting armed elements, or for committing non-violent acts
but in furtherance of the rebellion, is more an act of capturing them in the course of an armed conflict, to quell the
rebellion, than for the purpose of immediately prosecuting them in court for a statutory offense. The arrest, therefore,
need not follow the usual procedure in the prosecution of offenses which requires the determination by a judge of the
existence of probable cause before the issuance of a judicial warrant of arrest and the granting of bail if the offense is
bailable. Obviously, the absence of a judicial warrant is no legal impediment to arresting or capturing persons
committing overt acts of violence against government forces, or any other milder acts but equally in pursuance of the
rebellious movement. The arrest or capture is thus impelled by the exigencies of the situation that involves the very
survival of society and its government and duly constituted authorities. If killing and other acts of violence against the
rebels find justification in the exigencies of armed hostilities which is of the essence of waging a rebellion or
insurrection, most assuredly so in case of invasion, merely seizing their persons and detaining them while any of these
contingencies continues cannot be less justified. In this case, whatever may be said about the manner of his arrest, the
fact remains that the defendant was actually in court in the custody of the law on March 29, when a complaint sufficient
in form and substance was read to him. To this he pleaded not guilty. The trial followed, in which, and in the judgment of
guilty pronounced by the court, we find no error. Whether, if there were irregularities in bringing him personally before
the court, he could have been released on a writ of habeas corpus or now has a civil action for damages against the
person who arrested him we need not inquire. It is enough to say that such irregularities are not sufficient to set aside a
valid judgment rendered upon a sufficient complaint and after a trial free from error.

G.R. No. 89139 August 2, 1990ROMEO POSADAS y ZAMORA,

petitioner,vs.

THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS and THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES,

respondents.

GANCAYCO,

J.:

Facts:While Pat. Ungab and Umpar were conducting a surveillance along Magallanes Street,Davao City, they spotted
petitioner carrying a "buri" bag and they noticed him to beacting suspiciously.They approached the petitioner and
identified themselves asmembers of the INP. Petitioner attempted to flee but his attempt to get away wasthwarted by
the two notwithstanding his resistance.They then checked the "buri" bag of the petitioner where they found one (1)
caliber .38revolver, two (2) rounds of live ammunition for a .38 caliber gun, a smoke (tear gas)grenade, and two (2) live
ammunitions for a .22 caliber gun. The petitioner was askedto show the necessary license or authority to possess the
firearms and ammunitions butfailed to do so.

Issue:

Whether or not the warantless arrest and search was valid.

Ruling:

An arrest without a warrant may be effected by a peace officer or private person, among others, when in his presence
the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense; or when an
offense has in fact just been committed, and he has personal knowledge of the facts indicating that the person arrested
has committed it. Contrary to the argument of the Solicitor General that when the two policemen approached the
petitioner, he was actually committing or had just committed the offense of illegal possession of firearms and
ammunitions in the presence of the police officers and consequently the search and seizure of the contraband was
incidental to the lawful arrest in accordance with Section 12, Rule 126 of the 1985 Rules on Criminal Procedure; At the
time the peace officers in this case identified themselves and apprehended the petitioner as he attempted to flee they
did not know that he had committed, or was actually committing the offense of illegal possession of firearms and
ammunitions. They just suspected that he was hiding something in the buri bag. They did not know what its contents
were. The said circumstances did not justify an arrest without a warrant.

PEOPLE VS MENGOTE Y TEJAS

People of the Philippines vs. Rogelio Mengote y. TejasG.R. No. 8759, June 22, 1992

Facts:

A telephone call was received by Western Police district that here were three suspicious-looking persons at the
corner of Juan Luna and North Bay Boulevard in Tondo Manila. A surveillance team of plain clothes men was dispatch to
the place. They saw two men “looking from side to side” one of whom is holding his abdomen. They approached these
persons and identified themselves as policemen, whereupon the two tried to run away but were unable to escape
because the other lawmen had surrounded them. The suspects were then searched. One of them, who turned out to be
the accused was found with a .38 caliber Smith and Wesson revolver with six live bullets in the chamber. His companion
had a fan knife. The weapons were taken from them.

Issue:

Whether or not the accused constitutional right against unreasonable search and seizure is violated

Ruling:

The Supreme court held that par(a) section 5 Rule 113 of rules of court requires that a person be arrested 1 After
he has committed or while he is actually committing or is at least attempting to commit an offense 2 In the presence of
the arresting officer.

These requirements have not been established in the case at bar at bar. At the time of the arrest in question, the
accused was merely “looking from side to side” and “holding his abdomen”. There was apparently no offense that has
just been committed or was being actually committed or at least being attempted by Mengote in their presence.

Par. B. is no less applicable because it’s no less stringent requirements have not been satisfied. The prosecution
has not shown that at the time of arrest an offense had in fact just been committed and that the arresting officer had
personal knowledge of facts indicating that Mengote had committed it. All they had was hearsay information from the
telephone caller, and about a crime that had yet to be committed.

– ACQUITTED

MALACAT vs. CA

Facts:

Petitioner was arrested for having in his possession a hand grenade after he was searched by a group of policemen when
he was said to be acting suspiciously when he was hanging around Plaza Miranda with his eyes moving fast together
with other Muslim-looking men. When the policemen approached the group of men, they scattered in all directions
which prompted the police to give chase and petitioner was then apprehended and a search was made on his person.

He was then convicted under PD 1866 in the lower court. Hence, the present petition wherein petitioner contended that
the lower court erred in holding that the search made on him and the seizure of the hand grenade from him was an
appropriate incident to his arrest and that it erred in admitting the hand grenade as evidence since it was admissible
because it was a product of an unreasonable and illegal search.

Issue: WON the search and seizure conducted by the police was valid.

Held:
The general rule as regards arrests, searches and seizures is that a warrant is needed in order to validly effect the same.
31 The Constitutional prohibition against unreasonable arrests, searches and seizures refers to those effected without a
validly issued warrant, 32 subject to certain exceptions. As regards valid warrantless arrests, these are found in Section
5, Rule 113 of the Rules of Court, which reads, in part:

Sec. 5. — Arrest, without warrant; when lawful — A peace officer or a private person may, without a warrant, arrest a
person:

(a) When, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit
an offense;

(b) When an offense has in fact just been committed, and he has personal knowledge of facts indicating that the person
to be arrested has committed it; and

(c) When the person to be arrested is a prisoner who has escaped . . .

A warrantless arrest under the circumstances contemplated under Section 5(a) has been denominated as one "in
flagrante delicto," while that under Section 5(b) has been described as a "hot pursuit" arrest.

Turning to valid warrantless searches, they are limited to the following: (1) customs searches; (2) search of moving
vehicles; (3) seizure of evidence in plain view; (4) consent searches; 33 (5) a search incidental to a lawful arrest;34 and
(6) a "stop and frisk.’

At the outset, we note that the trial court confused the concepts of a "stop-and-frisk" and of a search incidental to a
lawful arrest. These two types of warrantless searches differ in terms of the requisite quantum of proof before they may
be validly effected and in their allowable scope.

In a search incidental to a lawful arrest, as the precedent arrest determines the validity of the incidental search, the
legality of the arrest is questioned in a large majority of these cases, e.g., whether an arrest was merely used as a
pretext for conducting a search. 36 In this instance, the law requires that there first be a lawful arrest before a search
can be made — the process cannot be reversed. 37 At bottom, assuming a valid arrest, the arresting officer may search
the person of the arrestee and the area within which the latter may reach for a weapon or for evidence to destroy, and
seize any money or property found which was used in the commission of the crime, or the fruit of the crime, or that
which may be used as evidence, or which might furnish the arrestee with the means of escaping or committing violence.

We now proceed to the justification for and allowable scope of a "stop-and-frisk" as a "limited protective search of outer
clothing for weapons," as laid down in Terry, thus:

We merely hold today that where a police officer observes unusual conduct which leads him reasonably to conclude in
light of his experience that criminal activity may be afoot and that the persons with whom he is dealing may be armed
and presently dangerous, where in the course of investigating this behavior he identifies himself as a policeman and
makes reasonable inquiries, and where nothing in the initial stages of the encounter serves to dispel his reasonable fear
for his own or others' safety, he is entitled for the protection of himself and others in the area to conduct a carefully
limited search of the outer clothing of such persons in an attempt to discover weapons which might be used to assault
him. Such a search is a reasonable search under the Fourth Amendment . .

Other notable points of Terry are that while probable cause is not required to conduct a "stop and frisk," it nevertheless
holds that mere suspicion or a hunch will not validate a "stop and frisk." A genuine reason must exist, in light of the
police officer's experience and surrounding conditions, to warrant the belief that the person detained has weapons
concealed about him. Finally, a "stop-and-frisk" serves a two-fold interest: (1) the general interest of effective crime
prevention and detection, which underlies the recognition that a police officer may, under appropriate circumstances
and in an appropriate manner, approach a person for purposes of investigating possible criminal behavior even without
probable cause; and (2) the more pressing interest of safety and self-preservation which permit the police officer to take
steps to assure himself that the person with whom he deals is not armed with a deadly weapon that could unexpectedly
and fatally be used against the police officer.
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. IDEL AMINNUDIN y AHNI

G.R.No. 74869 July 6, 1988

Facts:

The PC (Philippine Constabulary) officer received a tip from one of their informers that the accused was on board
a vessel bound for Iloilo City and was carrying marijuana. He was identified by name. Acting on this tip, they waited for
him in the evening and approached him as he descended from the gangplank after the informer pointed at him. They
detained him and inspected the bag he was carrying. It was found to contained three kilos of what were later analyzed
as marijuana leaves by the NBI forensic examiner. On the basis of the finding, the corresponding charge was then filed
against Aminnudin.

Issue:

Whether or not accused constitutional right against unreasonable search and seizure is violated

Ruling:

The Supreme Court Held that warrantless arrest allowed under Rule 113 of the rules of court not justified unless
the accused was caught in flagrante or a crime was about to be committed or had just been committed.

A vessels and aircraft are subject to warrantless searches and seizures for violation of the customs law because these
vehicles may be quickly moved out of the locality or jurisdiction before the warrant can be secured.

In the present case, from the conflicting declarations of the PC witnesses, it is clear that they had at least two
days within which they could have obtained a warrant to arrest and search Aminnudin who was coming to Iloilo on the
M/V Wilcon 9. His name was known. The vehicle was identified. The date of his arrival was certain. And from the
information they have received, they could have persuaded a judge that there was a probable cause, indeed, to justify
the issuance of a warrant. Yet they did nothing. The Bill of Rights was ignored altogether because the PC lieutenant who
was the head of the arresting team had determine on his own authority that a search warrant was not necessary.

The evidence of probable cause should be determined by a judge and not law enforcement agents.

ACQUITTED

PEOPLE VS MALMSTEDT

THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. MIKAEL MALMSTEDTG.R. No. 91107 June 19, 1991

Facts:

Captain Alen Vasco, the commanding officer of the first regional command (NARCOM) stationed at camp Dangwa,
ordered his men to set up a temporary checkpoint for the purpose of checking all vehicles coming from the Cordillera
Region. The order to establish a checkpoint was prompted by persistent reports that vehicles coming from Sagada were
transporting marijuana and other prohibited drugs. And an information also was received about a Caucasian coming
from Sagada had in his possession prohibited drugs.

In the afternoon the bus where accused was riding stopped. Sgt. Fider and CIC Galutan boarded the bus and
announced that they were members of the NARCOM and that they would conduct an inspection. During the inspection
CIC Galutan noticed a bulge on accused waist. Suspecting the bulge on accused waist to be a gun, the officer asked for
accused’s passport and other identification papers. When accused failed to comply, the officer required him to bring out
whatever it was that was bulging o his waist. And it turned out to be a pouched bag and when accused opened the same
bag the officer noticed four suspicious looking objects wrapped in brown packing tape. It contained hashish, a derivative
of marijuana.

Thereafter, the accused was invited outside the bus for questioning. But before he alighted from the bus accused
stopped to get two travelling bags. The officer inspects the bag. It was only after the officers had opened the bags that
the accused finally presented his passport. The two bags contained a stuffed toy each, upon inspection the stuff toy
contained also hashish.

Issue:

Whether or not there is a violation of the constitutional right against unreasonable search and seizure

Ruling:

The Supreme Court held that under Section 5 Rule 113 of the Rules of Court provides:

“Arrest without warrant; when lawful – a peace officer or a private person may, without a warrant, arrest a person:

a) When, in the presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit
an offense;

b) When an offense has in fact just been committed, and he has personal knowledge of facts indicating that the person
to be arrested has committed it; and

c) When the person to be arrested is a prisoner who has escaped from a penal establishment or place where he is
serving final judgment or temporary confined while his case is pending, or has escaped while being transferred from one
confinement to another”

Accused was searched and arrested while transporting prohibited drugs. A crime was actually being committed by the
accused and he was caught in flagrante delicto, thus the search made upon his personal effects falls squarely under
paragraph 1 of the foregoing provision of law, which allows a warrantless search incident to a lawful arrest.

Probable cause has been defined as such facts and circumstances which could lead a reasonable, discreet and prudent
man to believe that an offense has been committed, and that the object sought in connection with the offense are in the
placed sought to be searched.

When NARCOM received the information that a Caucasian travelling from Sagada to Baguio City was carrying with him a
prohibited drug, there was no time to obtain a search warrant.