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G.R. No.

180764

January 19, 2010

TITUS B. VILLANUEVA, Petitioner, vs.EMMA M. ROSQUETA, Respondent. FACTS: Rosqueta, formerly Deputy Commissioner of the Revenue Collection and Monitoring Group of the Bureau of Customs, tendered her courtesy resignation from that post on January 23, 2001, shortly after President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo assumed office. But five months later on June 5, 2001, she withdrew her resignation, claiming that she enjoyed security of tenure and that she had resigned against her will on orders of her 1 superior. Meantime, on July 13, 2001 Gil Valera (Valera) was appointed to respondent Rosquetas position. Challenging such appointment, Rosqueta filed a petition for prohibition, quo warranto, and injunction against petitioner VILLANUEVA, then Commissioner of Customs, the Secretary of Finance, and Valera with the RTC of Manil, which issued a temporary restraining order (TRO), enjoining them from implementing Valeras appointment, and superseded the TRO with a writ of preliminary injunction. During the Bureaus celebration of its centennial anniversary in February 2002, its special Panorama magazine edition featured all the customs deputy commissioners, except respondent Rosqueta. The souvenir program, authorized by the Bureaus Steering Committee headed by petitioner Villanueva to be issued on the occasion, had a space where Rosquetas picture was supposed to be but it instead stated that her position was "under litigation." Meanwhile, the commemorative billboard displayed at the Bureaus main gate included Valeras picture but not Rosquetas. Rosquetta file a complaint for damages alleging that the latter maliciously excluded her from the centennial anniversary memorabilia. ISSUE: Whether or not the CA erred in holding petitioner Villanueva liable in damages to respondent Rosqueta for ignoring the preliminary injunction order that the RTC issued in the quo warranto case (Civil Case 01101539), thus denying her of the right to do her job as Deputy Commissioner of the Bureau and to be officially recognized as such public officer.

HELD: NO. petitioner Villanueva cannot seek shelter in the alleged advice that the OSG gave him. Surely, a government official of his rank must know that a preliminary injunction order issued by a court of law had to be obeyed, especially since the question of Valeras right to replace respondent Rosqueta had not yet been properly resolved. That petitioner Villanueva ignored the injunction shows bad faith and intent to spite Rosqueta who remained in the eyes of the law the Deputy Commissioner. His exclusion of her from the centennial anniversary memorabilia was not an honest mistake by any reckoning. Indeed, he withheld her salary and prevented her 13 from assuming the duties of the position. As the Court said in Amonoy v. Spouses Gutierrez, a partys refusal to abide by a court order enjoining him from doing an act, otherwise lawful, constitutes an abuse and an unlawful exercise of right. Under the abuse of right principle found in Article 19 of the Civil Code, a person must, in the exercise of his legal right or duty, act in good faith. He would be liable if he instead acts in bad faith, with intent to prejudice 10 11 another. Complementing this principle are Articles 20 and 21 of the Civil Code which grant the latter 12 indemnity for the injury he suffers because of such abuse of right or duty.
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Filipinas synthetic fiber corpORATION,Petitioner v. Wilfredo de los santos, BENITO JOSE DE LOS SANTOS, MARIA ELENA DELOS SANTOS and CARMINA VDA. DE LOS SANTOS, Respondents. G.R. No. 152033March 16, 2011 On the night of September 30, 1984, Teresa Elena Legarda-de los Santos (Teresa Elena), the wife of respondent Wilfredo de los Santos, performed at the Rizal Theater in Makati City, Metro Manila as a member of the cast for the musical play, Woman of the Year. At the request of Wilfredo, his brother Armando de los Santos (Armando), husband of respondent Carmina Vda. de los Santos, went to the Rizal Theater to fetch Teresa Elena after the latter's performance. He drove a 1980 Mitsubishi Galant Sigma (Galant Sigma) with Plate No. NSL 559, a company car assigned to Wilfredo. Two other members of the cast of Woman of the Year, namely, Annabel Vilches (Annabel) and Jerome Macuja, joined Teresa Elena in the Galant Sigma. Around 11:30 p.m., while travelling along the Katipunan Road (White Plains), the Galant Sigma collided with the shuttle bus owned by petitioner and driven by Alfredo S. Mejia (Mejia), an employee of petitioner. The Galant Sigma was dragged about 12 meters from the point of impact, across the White Plains Road landing near the perimeter fence of Camp Aguinaldo, where the Galant Sigma burst into flames and burned to death beyond recognition all four occupants of the car. ISSUE: Whether or not petitioner is liable to pay damages. HELD: Yes. The Court is convinced that defendant Mejia was negligent when it was running real fast along EDSA when he saw a vehicle on the opposite side suddenly turn left towards White Plains. It was well established that Mejia was driving at the speed of 70 km/h, a speed beyond the rate of speed required by law, which is 50km/h, specifically Section 35 of Republic Act No. (RA) 4136. Under the New Civil Code,9unless there is proof to the contrary, it is presumed that a person driving a motor vehicle has been negligent if at the time of the mishap, he was violating any traffic regulation. Apparently, in the present case, Mejia's violation of the traffic rules does not erase the presumption that he was the one negligent at the time of the collision.