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Reyes v.

Mangino (2005)
Facts: Yolanda Reyes filed a complaint against Judge Marvin B. Mangino charging him with gross ignorance of the law, extortion, graft and corruption, fraud and deception. Reyes is the accused in a criminal case for other deceits where Mangino is the presiding judge. She avers that Mangino set up a meeting at the lobby of Manila Hotel and assured them of the dismissal of the case. At the meeting, P20,000 was paid to the respondent judge. Mangino subsequently told the spouses not to appear at the promulgation of judgment anymore and promised to just send the copy of the decision through mail. Another P40,000 was sent at the request of Mangino. The spouses received a copy of the decision finding them guilty and liable to pay civil liability. Judge Mangino denies the complainants allegations. However, he admitted that on the promulgation date of the decision, they agreed among themselves that they would just receive copies of the decision. In the investigation of the Executive Judge, Mangino claimed that he could not have been at the alleged meeting at Manila Hotel since he solemnized two marriages that morning in Tarlac and he couldnt have gotten in Manila in time. However, upon investigation of the Executive Judge, he discovered that the marriages he purportedly solemnized on the same day were made on different dates and that the marriage contracts were sent to the couples bearing an erroneous date (date of meeting). The Executive Judge recommended that Judge Mangino be dismissed from service. Issues: 1. W/N Judge Mangino is guilty of extortion. 2. W/N Judge Mangino is guilty of gross ignorance of the law. Held/Ratio:

1. NO. Judge Mangino cannot be held administratively liable on the ground of extortion and fraud.
In administrative proceedings, the burden of proof that the respondent committed the acts complained of rests on the complainant. Thus, if the latter fails to satisfactorily show the facts upon which he bases his claim, the respondent is under no obligation to prove his defense. In this case, the complainant could have easily gathered enough extrinsic evidence, such as testimonies of waiters, restaurant employees, or other disinterested witnesses, to prove the alleged meeting with the respondent Judge. But the complainant failed to do so. Where the charge on which removal is sought is misconduct in office, willful neglect, corruption, or incompetence, the general rules in regard to admissibility of evidence in criminal trials apply. The ground for the removal of a judicial officer should be established beyond reasonable doubt. Regarding the conviction of the complainant and his spouse, the rule is that only judicial errors tainted with fraud, dishonesty, gross ignorance, bad faith, or deliberate intent to do an injustice will be administratively sanctioned. In such a case, the remedy of the aggrieved party is not to file an administrative complaint but to elevate the error to the higher court for review and correction. 2. YES. Judge Mangino is liable for gross ignorance of the law in not requiring the presence of the accused during the promulgation of the decision in the criminal case, as admitted by him in his comment. The case does not fall under any of the instances when judgment may be promulgated even without the personal presence of the accused. Being held guilty of gross ignorance of the law, Judge Mangino was fined P10,000.