RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0

G.R. No. 174656 [Formerly G.R. Nos. 155271-73] PEOPLE OF THE vs. ZALDY IBAÑEZ y FRANCISCO, Appellant. May 11, 2007 The NBI’s medical examination in Living Case No. MG-99-477 revealed that AAA’s hymen had an old-healed laceration at the four o’clock position and that the hymenal orifice admitted a tube 2.5 cm. in diameter.7 Appellant denied raping his daughter. As alibi, he claimed that he was often away from home and usually returned only four days after because he was hooked on gambling and drugs. He would usually return home in the morning after his wife had gone to work to avoid quarrels. By then, AAA would already be in school. He admitted being in a rehabilitation center for sometime, but continued to take drugs upon his release. He also admitted that he would beat and threaten his wife if she did not give him money for drugs. He testified further that in January 1999, he left the house, stayed in Pasig and returned home only to steal his wife’s car. His wife threatened to have him arrested if he did not return the car. He asked his cousin to return it minus the stereo. When he returned home, his family had gone and he started to sell their things to buy shabu.8 After trial, the lower court found appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of qualified rape in Criminal Cases Nos. 7197-99 and 7199-99. Appellant was acquitted in Criminal Case No. 7198-99. The dispositive portion of the Decision9 dated July 17, 2002 reads: WHEREFORE, finding the accused guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the felony of rape as charged in the informations in criminal cases nos. 7197-99 and 7199-99, said accused is hereby sentenced to die by lethal injection and to pay the private complainant the amount of P50,000.00 as indemnity, another sum of P50,000.00 as moral damages, P25,000.00 as exemplary damages and the cost of this suit. The accused however is hereby acquitted of the felony of rape as charged in the information in criminal case no. 7198-99. SO ORDERED.10 Hence, the instant resort to automatic review of appellant’s conviction.1awphi1.nét Following People v. Mateo,11 the case was transferred and referred to the Court of Appeals. Upon review, the Court of Appeals rendered its Decision 12 dated May 31, 2006, affirming with modification the decision of the lower court. The fallo of the decision reads: WHEREFORE, appeal is hereby DISMISSED and the assailed July 17, 2002 Decision of the Regional Trial Court of xxx, Cavite, Branch 21, is hereby AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that accused-appellant Zaldy Ibañez is sentenced to DEATH for each conviction in Criminal Cases Nos. 7197-99 [and] 7199-99 and accused-appellant Zaldy Ibañez is hereby ORDERED to pay private complainant AAA P150,000.00 as civil indemnity and P100,000.00 as moral damages. Pursuant to Section 13 (a), Rule 124 of the 2000 Rules of Criminal Procedure as amended by A.M. No. 00-5-03-SC dated September 28, 2004, which became effective on October 15, 2004, the Court of Appeals, after rendering judgment, hereby refrains from making an entry of judgment and forthwith certifies the case and elevates the entire record of this case to the Supreme Court for review. SO ORDERED.13 Before us, appellant raises this issue for our resolution: THE TRIAL COURT GRAVELY ERRED IN NOT CONSIDERING THE INFORMATIONS IN CRIMINAL CASES NOS. 7197-99 AND 7199-99 INSUFFICIENT TO SUPPORT A JUDGMENT OF CONVICTION FOR FAILURE OF THE PROSECUTION TO STATE THE PRECISE DATES OF THE COMMISSION OF THE ALLEGED RAPES, IT BEING AN ESSENTIAL ELEMENT OF THE CRIME CHARGED.14 Simply stated, should the precise dates of the commission of the rape be alleged in the information?

1

PHILIPPINES,

Appellee,

Appellant Zaldy Ibañez y Francisco was charged with three counts of Rape under three informations, docketed as Criminal Cases Nos. 7197-99, 7198-99 and 7199-99, before the Regional Trial Court (RTC), xxx, Cavite, Branch 21. The informations read: CRIMINAL CASE NO. 7197-99 That sometime in June 1997, in xxx, Cavite, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, above-named accused, with lewd designs and by taking advantage of his moral ascendancy over his own daughter, AAA, then twelve (12) years old and by means of force, threat and intimidation, did, then and there, wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously lie and have sexual intercourse with AAA, a minor, against her will and consent. CONTRARY TO LAW.1 CRIMINAL CASE NO. 7198-99 That during the period January to December 1998, in xxx, Cavite, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, above-named accused, with lewd designs and by taking advantage of his moral ascendancy over his own daughter, AAA, then thirteen (13) years old and by means of force, threat and intimidation, did, then and there, wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously lie and have sexual intercourse with AAA, a minor, against her will and consent. CONTRARY TO LAW.2 CRIMINAL CASE NO. 7199-99 That sometime in April 1999, in xxx, Cavite, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, above-named accused, with lewd designs and by taking advantage of his moral ascendancy over his own daughter, AAA, [then] fourteen (14) years old and by means of force, threat and intimidation, did, then and there, wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously lie and have sexual intercourse with AAA, a minor, against her will and consent. CONTRARY TO LAW.3 When arraigned, appellant entered pleas of not guilty. Whereupon, trial on the merits ensued. On the first charge of rape, AAA testified that she was in their home at xxx, Cavite in June 1997.1awphi1.nét Her mother was in Isabela at the time. Her youngest sibling, BBB, and she were sleeping inside her parents’ room when her father carried BBB and placed BBB on the floor. He told her to be quiet as he undressed her, kissed her lips, her breasts, then inserted his penis in her vagina. He was on top of her for around 10 minutes. She kept still because she was afraid of him, as she had always been because he was a drug dependent. Though he did not threaten her, she told no one of the incident.4 On the second charge of rape, AAA testified that appellant raped her eight times from January to December 1998 in their home and she did not tell her mother because she was afraid of appellant.5 AAA testified that the third rape happened sometime in the morning of April 1999 in their house while her mother was at work. Appellant called her to come in her parents’ room. When she refused, he came out, took her by the arms and dragged her into the room. Inside, he undressed her, kissed her body and raped her. After the incident, she told a cousin what happened and the latter brought her to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) where her complaint-affidavit was executed.6

" for a rape committed sometime in the first week of May 1998. P75.R. Such being the case.R.18 Also. the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) submits that the two criminal informations filed against appellant are sufficient to inform appellant of the accusations against him.5 Province of Quezon. moral damages. he did not. WHEREFORE. the following shall be imposed: (a) the penalty of reclusion perpetua. no woman. 7197-99 and 7199-99. the material fact or circumstance to be considered is the occurrence of the rape. with lewd designs. unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge with one [AAA].000 as moral damages. He avers that the informations are not explicit and certain as to the dates of the rape. allow an examination of her private parts and subject herself to public trial or ridicule if she has not. in truth. The allegation adequately afforded appellant an opportunity to prepare his defense. He argues that such uncertainties run afoul of the constitutionally protected right of the accused to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against him.6 his own daughter. P150. threats and intimidation.4 Municipality of x x x. least of all a minor. 2007 THE PHILIPPINES. Pursuant to prevailing jurisprudence." Further. and "sometime in the month of September 1998. The precise time of the crime has no substantial bearing on its commission.7 Criminal Case No. CONTRARY TO LAW. appellant was charged. appellee. for the two counts of rape.000." After considering the submissions of the parties. we are in agreement with the submission of the Court of Appeals and the OSG that the RTC erred in the imposition of the appropriate penalty because it imposed only one penalty of death for two convictions of rape. In lieu of the death penalty. for each conviction of rape which is qualified by circumstances warranting the imposition of the death penalty. When a woman. been a victim of rape and impelled to seek justice for the wrong done to her. consistent with prevailing jurisprudence. when the law violated does not make use of the nomenclature of the penalties of the Revised Penal Code. 9346. CR-H. appellant cannot complain that he was deprived of his right to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against him. Philippines. another P150. 6204-G and 6694-G where appellant Lamberto Rafon was found guilty of raping his minor daughter and sentenced to suffer the penalty of death. when the law violated makes use of the nomenclature of the penalties of the Revised Penal Code. 11 years of age. not the time of its commission. However. more so if she is a minor.000 as exemplary damages in light of the presence of the qualifying circumstances of minority and relationship. This doctrine applies with more vigor when the culprit is a close relative of the victim. against her will. 169059 September 5. Act No. Instead. it is not essential that it be alleged in the information with ultimate precision. Section 1116 of the same rule provides that the precise date of the commission of the offense needs to be alleged in the information only when "it is a material ingredient of the offense. it is now too late for appellant to question the sufficiency of the criminal informations regarding the dates of the commission of the offense.23 However. in view of the enactment of Republic Act No. 6204-G That sometime in the year 1994. No. and P25.24 Besides.000 as moral damages and P50.17 The gravamen of the offense is carnal knowledge of a woman. this Court upholds the Court of Appeals’ ruling that the award of damages be modified.000 and P75. THE PEOPLE OF vs. says that she has been raped. did then and there willfully. the accusatory portions of which read. This treats of the appeal from the Decision1 dated 5 May 2005 of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G. without eligibility for parole as provided under Rep. or a total of P150.000. appellant.C. Thus. 2006 of the Court of Appeals finding appellant Zaldy Ibañez y Francisco guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of qualified rape is AFFIRMED with the following MODIFICATIONS: (1) the penalty of death meted out on the appellant is reduced to RECLUSION PERPETUA. 2006 prohibiting the imposition of the death penalty. 934626 on June 24. and P25.000. and her father at that.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 In his brief. Appellant also alleged that AAA filed the rape cases to have him imprisoned because of his failure to fulfill his paternal obligations. or (b) the penalty of life imprisonment. appellant has waived his right to object to the informations on the ground of an error as to the time of the alleged rape. within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. LAMBERTO RAFON.27 the civil indemnity and moral damages to be awarded are P75. An information is valid as long as it distinctly states the elements of the offense and the acts or omissions constitutive thereof.000 as exemplary damages." for a rape which was committed in 1993. (Emphasis supplied. in a prosecution for rape.000 as civil indemnity. we find appellant’s contention devoid of merit. the above-named accused. Thus. 2 G.25 Withal. We are not persuaded by his allegation.000.) Further. he had himself arraigned and entered a plea of not guilty to the crime of rape. thus: Criminal Case No. appellant should pay AAA P150. respectively. 2. 6694-G . for each count of rape. Branch 61 in Criminal Case Nos. and P50. a minor. No.000 as civil indemnity. and exemplary damages against appellant are set at P75. 00115 affirming the Decision2 dated 8 July 2002 of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Gumaca. Hence. The penalty imposed on the appellant should be modified so that in each case. by means of force. SO ORDERED. the Decision dated May 31. she says in effect all that is necessary to constitute the commission of the crime that has been inflicted on her. "on or about May 1998. Therefore. for each count of rape. the conviction of rape should separately be penalized by death. at Barangay x x x. appellant contends that he should have been acquitted in Criminal Cases Nos. On the other hand. would concoct a story of defloration. and (2) the awards of civil indemnity.000 as exemplary damages. Rule 110 15 of the Rules of Court merely requires that the information state "the approximate time of the commission of the offense." for a rape committed on an evening in September 1998. The exact date of the commission of a crime is not an essential element of the crime charged. Quezon. Appellant could have filed a motion for a bill of particulars before his arraignment22 or a motion to quash on the ground that the informations alleged erroneous dates prior to his entry of plea. This Court has previously upheld complaints and informations in prosecutions for rape which merely alleged that a rape has been committed "sometime in the month of April 1993. it cannot be seriously asserted that appellant was deprived of his constitutional right to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against him when the prosecution failed to state the exact date of the commission of the offense. respectively. the penalty in each case to be meted on appellant is reclusion perpetua in accordance with Section 2 thereof which reads: SEC. The OSG contends that Section 6.19 The allegation in the informations that the appellant committed the rape "sometime in June 1997" 20 and "sometime in April 1999"21 was sufficient to inform appellant that he was being charged of qualified rape committed against his daughter. In two (2) separate Informations3 filed on 5 March 1999. At any rate.

According great respect to the findings and conclusions of the trial court on the credibility of witnesses.27 appellant avers that the court a quo erred: (1) in giving credence to the testimony of AAA. thus: Certainly. Atimonan. and similarly increasing the award of exemplary damages from P10. In addition.00 for each count in accordance with jurisprudence. 1983 and that her name [AAA] as Exh. (People v. AAA did not dare tell her mother BBB of her sufferings in the hands of her father. It stressed that although there were inconsistencies in her testimony as to who removed her clothes and as regards the whereabouts of her siblings at the time of the rape incidents. and 9 o'clock positions that according to her could have been caused by sexual intercourse. In fact.00 as moral damages and P10. 335 of the Revised Penal Code[." 26 It further held that AAA's testimony is corroborated by physical evidence. the innocent but natural and straightforward testimony of [AAA] alone on [sic] the detailed narration of a pretty girl on [sic] her teens on how she was repeatedly violated by her own father from 1994 to 1998 is sufficient to sustain the conviction of her father.000.12 The appellate court affirmed the judgment of the trial court with the following modification: WHEREFORE. 254 SCRA 140). transferring the case to the CA for intermediate review conformably with the ruling in People v. Daquilanea found healed hymenal lacerations in AAA at the 3 o'clock. (People v. Daquilanea testified that AAA went to see her on 4 January 1999 at the Doña Marta District Hospital to have herself examined because she was raped. and (2) in finding him guilty beyond reasonable doubt despite the uncertainty of the commission of the crime charged. The assailed Decision dated 8 July 2002 is AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION. against her will. based on the foregoing premises. the CA affirmed the RTC's decision.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 That sometime in the year 1998. Costs against the accused. People v. AAA relayed the rape incidents to her and they both went to the police to report the matter. AAA. On cross-examination. Lao. thus: WHEREFORE. Quezon. these are trivial and do not impair her credibility as "a rape victim is not expected to mechanically keep memory details of the rape incident and then when called to testify automatically give an accurate account of the traumatic experience she suffered.9 The case was thereafter elevated to this Court on automatic review and the parties were directed to file their respective Briefs. the above-named accused. 131 SCRA 56). and Dr.000. Campesino. the appeal is DENIED. and successfully having his way with her. "B") indicating that she was born on March24 [sic] 3." Computing her age based on November 3.000. 249 SCRA 137). CCC allegedly initiated the instant case because he owed appellant P10.000. Gaban. and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. The relation that exists between the complainant and the accused as daughter and father is established beyond cavil not only as shown in the birth certificate (Exh. 3 . unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge of one [AAA].] as amended by R. "B-1" and the name of Lamberto Rafon as her father was marked as Exh. When BBB arrived home in January 1999. Esquila. She tried to cross her legs but was overpowered by her father and she could not do anything but cry silently. xxxx Verily. her own father (People v. Philippines. her age in 1994 was 11 years old and in 1998 is 15 years old.000. AAA recalled that the last incident was similar to the first.00 to P50.000.00 as exemplary damages for each count of rape.00 to P20. [No.] 7659[.00.13 The case is again before us for our final disposition. CONTRARY TO LAW. The age of [AAA] has been established beyond cavil by her birth certificate (Exh.18 Dr. From 1994 to 1998. No one indeed would want to go through the troubles and humiliation of a trial for a much debasing offense unless she was really raped and her motive was solely to seek justice. Appellant is ordered to pay [AAA] P50.16 Appellant allegedly raped her several more times thereafter until she was in second year high school.000.23 In finding the appellant guilty. She did not report the harrowing experience to anyone for fear that appellant would make good his threats.00 and was angry at him. Her testimony deserves the highest credence. SO ORDERED. The evidence for the prosecution consists mainly of the testimonies of private complainant.22 who had a grudge against him because the latter wanted a share in the money sent to him by his wife. 6 o'clock.00 as exemplary damages for each count of rape or the total amount of P60. He then warned her not to make any noise or he would kill her and her siblings.000. a resident physician of the Doña Marta District Hospital. She would not have admitted in public that she was deflowered by her own father unless she was telling the truth for in doing so. it is entitled to greater weight since her accusing words are directed against a close relative. a minor. Cheres Daquilanea. modifying it only to increase the award of moral damages from P20.000. Mateo. He claimed that it was his brother-in-law. 15 years of age. It is indeed extremely difficult to believe that the complainant Arlene. "B-3. she was compromising her family.000. the RTC made the following findings. CCC. In his brief. the last incident being sometime in 1998. with lewd designs. young as she was. he worked as a laborer so that he sometimes went to Lopez. Appellant who was drunk allegedly forced her to lie down on the papag and remove her clothes. the appellate court gave full faith and credence to AAA's positive and straightforward testimony as against appellant's bare denial.14 She is one of five children born to appellant and BBB.] and is hereby imposed the penalty of DEATH for each crime of rape. at Barangay x x x. Afraid of what appellant might do to her and her family.000. It was at the instance of her boyfriend to whom she first revealed the truth about her father that she eventually had the courage to tell BBB. AAA testified that she was born on 3 November 1983 as evidenced by her birth certificate. Her two younger brothers were at a neighbor's house watching television while her two sisters were studying in the poblacion.00 for each count. x x x x25 Like the lower court. appellant denied the charges against him. did then and there willfully.A. the Court issued a Resolution11 on 21 September 2004.20 Averring that BBB never left their house during the said period. However. premises considered. [AAA] is a credible witness.17 Dr.15 She recounted that appellant first raped her in their house sometime in 1994 when she was in grade five and while her mother was working overseas. The dispositive portion of the judgment reads.21 His parents allegedly stayed with them in their house while BBB was away. "B") but by the testimony of both complainant and the accused. by means of force. he testified that BBB had been working as a beautician in Saudi Arabia since 1995 and came home for a vacation every two years. He is further ordered to indemnify [AAA] the amount of P75. trial ensued which culminated in the guilty verdict. which according to him was unreliable and unbelievable. Quezon to haul coco lumber. she having sustained hymenal lacerations.00. threats and intimidation.000. accused shall pay her likewise P20. accused LAMBERTO RAFON is hereby found GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt of two (2) counts of rape defined and penalized under Art. 262 SCRA 598.00 as moral damages and P25. with the appellant forcing her to lie down and to remove her clothes.19 As the lone witness for his defense. Appellant started kissing her then she felt pain when he inserted his penis inside her vagina and proceeded to have sexual intercourse with her. Province of Quezon. 1983. He testified that AAA is his daughter and he is legally married to BBB. however. Forthwith.8 Appellant pleaded not guilty on arraignment.00 for each act or P150. his own daughter. appellant wondered why AAA would file a criminal case against him as he had very cordial relations with her. could have guile and craft to accuse her father of such heinous crime. Municipality of x x x.10 The parties complied.

In People v. Thus. Ma'am. what year? A: 1994. a statement of the year of the commission of the offense. As regards the rape that occurred in 1998. is a denial of due process as no less than the Constitution guarantees that the accused must be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against him. He should have made his objection before he was arraigned. the offense falls under paragraph 1 (a) of Art. Q: And after he removed his clothes. The offense being statutory rape. as a consequence. he concludes. Rule 117 of the Rules of Criminal Procedure provides. Ma'am. guardian. the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that the carnal knowledge occurred through the use of force. xxxx Q: Now. As regards AAA's failure to recall the exact time and date of the commission of the offenses. to wit: The failure of the accused to assert any ground of a motion to quash before he pleads to the complaint or information. would suffice. We now go into the crux of the controversy. you said it was nighttime when you were first raped in 1994 by your father. the OSG notes that the same are minor and inconsequential and seem more apparent than real. Thus. except when it is an essential element of the offense. The applicable law then already considered carnal knowledge with a woman under 12 years of age as rape. Bugayong. In its brief. 8353 or the Anti-Rape Law of 1997. it is too late in the day for appellant to raise this issue. one in 1994 and another in 1998. as amended. The Court therein held that the victim's Sworn Statement which categorically stated that she had been raped by the accused in 1993 when she was in grade three substantially cured the vagueness in the information and considered accused to have been sufficiently informed thereby. Appellant argues that the statement only of the year of commission of the offense is too vague so that he was deprived of his constitutional right to be informed of the accusation against him and to fully prepare for his defense. there was no denial of due process. appellant herein cannot be said to have been deprived of his right to be informed. As to the 1994 rape incident. AAA categorically testified that appellant had sexual intercourse with her. relative by consanguinity or affinity within the third civil degree. Ma'am. as in the instant case. what else did he do? A: Then he told me to remove my clothes. This time. We disagree. Under the new rape law the imposable penalty in that instance is death. cannot result in a judgment of guilt. Hence. The absence of a struggle or an outcry during the rape plus the long delay in reporting the incidents defy a woman's natural instinct for self-preservation. As to the 1994 rape incident. what else did he do? A: He told me not to make noise. In both cases.30 The gravamen of rape is carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the circumstances provided by law. Section 9. it need not be proven as alleged and x x x the complaint will be sustained if the proof shows that the offense was committed at any time within the period of the statute of limitations and before the commencement of the action. Furthermore. he argues. Q: What did you do when he ordered you to remove your clothes? A: I was forced to remove my clothes. Q: Were you wearing clothes at that time or no clothes at all? A: I still have clothes. AAA was already 15 years old at that time.A. We shall first address the issue of the insufficiency of the Informations. so he stresses. 266-A of the RPC. (b). 266-A and 266-B of the RPC.33 As regards the rape incident in 1998. thus: Q: When was the first time that you were raped by your father [sic]. It is unnecessary to state in the information the precise date that the offense was committed. what essentially had to be established was simply the fact of having sexual intercourse with AAA. deprived him of the chance to interpose the defense of alibi. either because he did not file a motion to quash or failed to allege the same in said motion. step-parent. (g). it was alleged that AAA was only 11 years old at that time. the applicable provisions are Arts. How did you[r] father rape you? A: He laid me down in our papag and there he raped me. Appellant also challenges the two Informations filed against him for being ambiguous as they did not specify the date or at the very least the month as to when the rape incidents allegedly took place. shall be deemed a waiver of any objections except those based on the grounds provided for in paragraphs (a).31 we held that "when the time given in the complaint is not of the essence of the offense.28 the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) maintains that appellant's guilt has been proven beyond reasonable doubt by the positive and credible testimony of AAA. Addressing the inconsistencies in her testimony. As was held in Bugayong. Q: And after he warned you not to make noise. accused therein was charged with raping his stepdaughter several times before and until 15 October 1994 but was convicted of his dastardly acts committed in 1993. it observes that the time of commission is not a material ingredient of rape. what else did he do if he did any? A: He removed his clothes. This.29 The date of commission is not an element of the offense of rape.34 as introduced by the Anti-Rape Law of 1997. ascendant.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 Appellant insists that he cannot be convicted based on AAA's incredible testimony. Proof of the use of force in committing the sexual act was unnecessary and superfluous. The OSG points out that AAA resisted her father's bestial acts but to no avail and that his moral ascendancy also cowed her to submission. Ma'am."32 In said case. Q: Why were you fo[r]ced to remove your clothes? 4 . No. 335 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) before the enactment of R. and (i) of section 3 of this Rule. Ma'am. Ma'am. He maintains that all these cast doubt on the prosecution's evidence which. Ma'am. threat. He claims that there was no imminent danger to AAA's life and she had every opportunity to report the incident and to prevent a recurrence but she failed to do so. A careful examination of the records as well as the transcripts of stenographic notes of the instant case lead us to affirm appellant's guilt. or intimidation. The first which was committed in 1994 is governed by Art. The OSG adds that appellant did not object to the sufficiency of the Informations before he entered his plea and it is now too late for him to complain. He did not timely object to the alleged defects in the Informations and he actively participated in the trial. Q: After he laid you in the papag. he asserted that it reeked of inconsistencies. defending himself and confronting the witnesses against him. the offense of rape is qualified when the victim is under eighteen (18) years of age and the offender is a parent. The allegations that he committed two counts of rape. Questioning the truthfulness of AAA's testimony. We note that appellant was charged with two counts of rape. or the common-law spouse of the parent of the victim.

35 [Emphasis supplied] A: In our house. How long did he stay on top of you? A: I do not know how long he was on top of me but he stayed long. Q: And while on top of you. Q: Why galit at takot? As regards the rape episode in 1998. Thus: 5 . Q. what did you do. What else did he do? A: He placed himself on top of me. what did he do next? A: He raped me. did your father engage in drinking liquor? A: Yes. Ma'am. what did he do? By the way. How did he do that? Can you explain to us? You were both naked. Q: And after he left you. Q: And what did you feel while your father was doing that to you? A: I was angry and afraid. Q: And after he [sic] removed your clothes as ordered by your father. he will kill all of us. where were you? A: In [sic] the papag. xxxx Q: When your mother left for abroad. Ma'am. Ma'am. if any? A: It was painful. Ma'am. And after his penis was inserted on [sic] your vagina. Ma'am.] Miss Witness? A: Because the penis of my father was inserted. sir. was he wearing clothes or none? A: No more. Ma'am. Ma'am.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 A: Because he told me that if I would not do that. Q: What [sic] that your first experience? A: Yes. was he moving or not? A: He was moving. Ma'am. Ma'am. Ma'am. Ma'am. Q: What is that same thing? What did he do? A: He laid me down and I was told to lay [sic] down and I was ordered to remove my clothes. xxxx Q: Can you tell this Court in what place does your father used to drink? Q: And how did your father rape you in 1998 – last raped you in 1998? A: The same thing was done to me. Ma'am. Q: Where was it inserted? A: To [sic] my vagina. Q: Then? A: He was touching my breast. when your father laid on top of you. Ma'am. Q: When you were ordered to lay [sic] down. what else did he do? A: He again inserted his penis to [sic] my vagina. Ma'am. Q: Why was your vagina painful[. if any? A: I cried. what did you feel when you were raped as you said? A: I got afraid and I felt that my vagina was painful. what did he do next? A: He laid on top of me. what did you feel. Q: And after you removed your clothes. Q: He was moving. Ma'am. Ma'am. AAA testified in a clear-cut manner on the coercion or intimidation exerted by appellant that forced her into sexual intercourse with him. Ma'am. Ma'am. When he was on top of you. Q. Q: And why were you afraid? A: Because he might do what he was telling me that he will kill us. Ma'am. Ma'am. Ma'am. xxxx A: I was angry at myself because I could not defend myself. Q: And when he inserted his penis to [sic] your vagina. Q: You said you were hinalay. sir. Q: And where were your brothers at that time? A: Watching TV in the house of our neighbor. what did your father do? (No answer)You said that you were raped. Q: Aside from touching your breast. Ma'am.

the testimony of a witness must be considered and calibrated in its entirety and not in truncated portions or isolated passages. free from material inconsistency. what did you do? A: I was just crying. 37 and the trial court is in the best position to resolve the question. respectively. sir. sir. it is appellant who was inconsistent when he first testified that his wife never left the house from 1994 to 1998 and then later stated on cross-examination that he received money from her while she worked as a beautician in Saudi Arabia during those years.43 Although we have subsequently held that the moral ascendancy of the accused in incestuous rapes. sir. sir. Q: You did not push him away? A: I pinched him.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 Q: Now.000.00 as civil indemnity and exemplary damages. and Third. 9346.44 it may be considered a contributing factor when coupled with other threatening circumstances such as those in this case. xxxx Q: But you did not shout? misapplied some fact or circumstance of weight and substance that would have affected the result of the case. the lower court correctly meted out to appellant the penalty of death on both counts. having heard the witnesses and observed their demeanor during trial. Moreover. No.45 6 A: No. That appellant had sexual intercourse with his daughter in 1994 was sufficiently proven. I was just crying. Q: You did not bite him? A: No. she stated that she removed her clothes but on cross-examination. In many instances.000. alone.00 and P25.41 that in incestuous rapes. Threats to kill her and her siblings who lived with a drunkard of a father under one roof coupled with his moral ascendancy and influence over her are sufficient factors to build a climate of psychological terror. or .36 [Emphasis supplied] At the core of almost all rape cases is the issue of credibility of witnesses. the findings of the trial court pertaining to the credibility of witnesses are entitled to great weight and respect since it had the opportunity to examine their demeanor as they testified on the witness stand. the victim suddenly finds the will to summon unknown sources of courage to cry out for help and bring her depraved malefactor to justice. Q: What did your father do when you were trying to close your two legs? A: He was trying to separate my legs. We sustain the awards of P75. 39 The lower court and the appellate court found appellant guilty of rape on both counts. However.40 If at all. for each count of rape but increase the award of moral damages from P50. Thus.00 to P75. sir. They are plainly insufficient to render complainant's testimony doubtful. (2) she narrated that her brothers were watching television at their neighbor's house when her father first raped her but when asked again later. In a few cases. this Court has laid down the following parameters. a witness who testified in a categorical.000. does not lead to the conclusion that sufficient intimidation was present. prohibits the imposition of the death penalty. R. the appellate court will not disturb the factual findings of the lower court unless there is a showing that it had overlooked. sir. sir. Melivo. It was observed in People v. Appellant thus shall suffer only the penalty of reclusion perpetua.00 for each count in line with prevailing jurisprudence. That he forced her into sexual congress in 1998 was likewise proven. straightforward. deserves full faith and credence especially when set against appellant's bare denial. more they do not negate the commission of rape. Considering the foregoing. thus: First. We find no cogent reason to disturb their findings. AAA's clear and categorical narration of the sexual assaults against her. The age of AAA at the time of the rape incidents as well as her relationship with appellant were sufficiently established by the prosecution and admitted by appellant. There is no other conclusion than that her declarations bear the ring of truth. The courts below similarly gave full faith and credence to AAA's testimony. Q: Did you not cross your two legs? A: I was trying to do that. on what time of the day do they have drinking session[s] in your house? A: Sometimes in the afternoon. "[t]he rapist perverts whatever moral ascendancy and influence he has over his victim in order to intimidate and force the latter to submit to repeated acts of rape over a period of time. misunderstood.000. sir. xxxx Q: You did not box him? A: No. xxxx Q: Was he under the influence of liquor during that time? A: Yes." 42 That ascendancy or influence flows from the father's parental authority over his children and from the latter's correlative duty of reverence and respect towards the former." signed into law on 24 June 2006. That she would falsely accuse her own father of committing so grave a crime as rape only to fuel a grudge harbored by her uncle is hardly believable. Second. He challenged the truthfulness of her testimony given the following inconsistencies: (1) on direct examination. she answered that they were sleeping. The courts below correctly found that appellant had indeed employed threats and intimidation in order to subject AAA to his evil desires. xxxx Q: And when your father placed himself on your top.A. Appellant's attempt to damage the credibility of AAA is futile. and (3) she claimed that her mother was abroad when the rape incidents transpired but her mother never left their house in the years 1994 to 1998 according to appellant. we thus find appellant guilty of rape on both counts. Q: Do they drink in the evening? A: Yes. sir. The appellate court correctly held that the adverted inconsistencies are minor and inconsequential. sir.38 In assessing the credibility of witnesses. spontaneous and frank manner and remained consistent on crossexamination is a credible witness. he succeeds and the crime is forever kept on a lid. entitled an "An Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty in the Philippines. she testified that it was her father who undressed her. Thus.

1998. are as follows: FINDINGS: GENERAL AND EXTRAGENITAL: Fairly developed. CRIMINAL CASE NO. She was 12 years of age in the year 1996 when the alleged incidents of rape took place. the said accused by means of force and intimidation. Q-99-87053. CRIMINAL CASE NO. he is hereby ordered to pay private complainant P75. inside a bedroom and undressed her and put himself on top of her and thereafter have carnal knowledge with said AAA against her will and without her consent. trial on the merits ensued. unlawfully and feloniously drag said AAA. Q-99-87054 That in or about the month of May. 177150 November 22. DDD and EEE to play outside the house. in XXX. Philippines. Angel Cordero (Dr.6 BBB was not able to accompany AAA in filing the instant case against appellant because she was also detained for drug pushing and was released only on 5 December 1999. papatayin kita. unlawfully and feloniously drag said AAA. appellant stood up and warned her not to tell anyone of the incident or he would kill her. When AAA was already inside the room. PO3 Jesus Deduque (PO3 Deduque). Appellant told her. appellant placed himself on top of her and removed her shorts and panty. one evening of May 1998. fairly nourished and coherent female subject. at around 5:00 in the afternoon. AAA was employed as a house helper. Branch 107. and Q-99-87055 dated 4 August 2004. BBB. No. she immediately sought AAA and.00 as civil indemnity. AAA did not shout because appellant threatened to kill her. appellant ordered her to lie down on the cemented floor. personally examined AAA. to wit: by then and there. not just the commotion caused by appellant in front of her employer’s house when she did not give him money. After his release from jail. 12 years of age. When arraigned on 6 March 2000. "Wag kang maingay. appellant was arrested by PO3 Deduque and PO3 Baldeswis. CCC. she and her younger siblings. Appellant pulled her left arm and made her face him. For the third time. unlawfully and feloniously drag said AAA. the said accused by means of force and intimidation. He removed his shorts and placed himself on top of her. After satisfying his lust. AAA. in the evening of May 1998. Appellant pulled her left arm and made her lie in a straight body position. his own daughter. 1998. AAA’s mother. Upon her release from jail.R. Cordero). and again inserted his penis into her vagina. but also that appellant previously raped her several times. Abdomen is flat and soft. premises considered. with the assistance of counsel de oficio.000. appellant stood up and reiterated his threat to kill her if she would tell anyone what happened. in XXX. and charged with rape. The prosecution presented as witnesses AAA. He then pulled down her shorts and panty. taken together. minor. the appealed decision is hereby AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION.00 as exemplary damages. were left at their house with appellant. a physician of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Crime Laboratory. P75. PO3 Melba Baldeswis (PO3 Baldeswis). to wit: by then and there. PEOPLE OF THE vs. 01798 dated 3 August 2006. and P25. but to no avail because appellant pressed his feet against hers.R. Philippines. Appellant placed himself on top of her and removed her shorts and panty. AAA proceeded to the house of BBB’s kumare. From June 1998 to February 1999. For each count of rape. WILLIAM CHING. and Dr. SO ORDERED." plaintiff-appellee. Afterwards. inside a bedroom and undressed her and put himself on top of her and thereafter have carnal knowledge with said AAA against her will and without her consent. AAA is the third child in a brood of eight children born to appellant and BBB. When she did. 12 years of age. James Belgira (Dr.000. 2007 PHILIPPINES. as stated in the medicolegal report. inside a bedroom and undressed her and put himself on top of her and thereafter have carnal knowledge with said AAA against her will and without her consent.7 Dr. She screamed "Tulungan po ninyo ako!" and resisted. Subsequently. AAA felt pain but she could not move because appellant held both her hands above her head. in Criminal Cases No. present the following narrative: .00 as moral damages. Philippines. minor. Thereafter. accused-appellant. to wit: by then and there. Sometime in the year 1996. 12 years of age. EEE and FFF. his own daughter. Their testimonies. AAA and her younger siblings were sleeping on the cemented floor inside the bedroom when appellant entered and lay down beside her. For review is the Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. namely. she fully supported AAA in the instant case against appellant. Q-99-87053 That in or about the month of May. appellant. Aling Leony.3 The factual antecedents are as follows: On 1 October 1999. willfully. when informed of the incident.000. She did not shout out of fear. appellant was arrested and detained for drug pushing. three separate informations4 were filed with the RTC against appellant for qualified rape allegedly committed as follows: CRIMINAL CASE NO. CR-HC No. appellant stood up and left the bedroom. Appellant Lamberto Rafon is GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt of two counts of qualified rape and is sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua for each count. For the second time. willfully. Appellant then removed his shorts and brief and thereafter inserted his penis into her vagina. Appellant told CCC. AAA was then cooking rice when appellant instructed her to go inside the bedroom. She did not inform BBB of the incident because of her fear that appellant would make good his threats to kill her.1 affirming with modifications the Decision of the Quezon City Regional Trial Court (RTC). Fed up. pleaded "Not Guilty" to each of the charges in the informations. Despite the pain.2 convicting accused-appellant William Ching of three counts of rape committed against his minor daughter. the said accused by means of force and intimidation. willfully. to forget and recover from the incident. appellant would go to see AAA at her employer’s house demanding money and creating a scene when AAA refused to give him any. while BBB was at the market buying food. Subsequently.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 WHEREFORE. Costs against appellant.5 Thereafter. minor. DDD. GENITAL: 7 G. these informations were consolidated for joint trial. his own daughter. AAA sneaked out of her employer’s house and proceeded to the nearby barangay hall to report. Q-99-87054. Breasts are conical with dark brown areola and nipple from which no secretions could be pressed out. His findings. in XXX. while AAA and her younger siblings were sleeping inside the bedroom. Q-99-87055 That in or about the year of 1996. appellant lay down beside her. In the meantime. Belgira). he had carnal knowledge of her. Hence.

000. c. On separating the same disclosed an elastic. but he was detained for selling drugs in 1997. that the accused shall be pardoned by the President.22 In view of the penalty imposed upon appellant. Belgira to personally appear before the trial court. The dispositive portion of the decision reads: WHEREFORE.000. Q-99-87054. b. Further. Q99-87055 is AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that the sentence imposed on appellant is reduced to reclusion perpetua for each count of qualified rape. the RTC rendered a Decision convicting appellant of three counts of rape.00 for moral damages and P25. this Court finds that the prosecution established the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt and is therefore found guilty of the offenses charged. the Court imposed on appellant the penalty of reclusion perpetua. (8) request for laboratory examination forwarded by Police Station 4 to the PNP Crime Laboratory17. To pay the costs of the suit. (2) marriage contract of BBB and appellant11. To indemnify the private complainant AAA the amount of P75. On several occasions. In Crim. Cervix is firm and closed. IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING. External vaginal orifice offers moderate resistance to the introduction of the examining index finger. Cordero. While he was in jail.00. Q-99-87053. the Court of Appeals promulgated its Decision. accused-appellant shall not be eligible for parole under Act No. d. thus: WHEREFORE. To pay the private complainant AAA the amount of P75. and that pursuant to said law. affirming with modifications the Decision of the RTC.000.000.00 for exemplary damages. In Criminal Case No. To pay the costs of the suit. Upon his release from jail in February 1999. d. to wit: (1) Sinumpaang Salaysay of AAA10. however. CONCLUSION: Subject is in non-virgin state physically. but he was again imprisoned for robbery and drug cases. he would see AAA at her employers’ house to ask for money.00 for exemplary damages for each count of qualified rape. (4) letter referral of Police Station 4. the RTC elevated the records of the case directly to the Court of Appeals for review pursuant to our ruling in People v. another P75. of the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City. It was AAA’s employer and BBB who coached AAA to file rape charges against appellant. in lieu of death penalty. Branch 107 convicting accused-appellant William Ching of three (3) counts of qualified rape in Crim. Q-99-87053 and Q-99-87054. fleshy-type hymen with shallow healed lacerations at 5 and 9 o’clock position.000. To indemnify the private complainant AAA the amount of P50. who appeared in court for the purpose of producing and interpreting the medical records of AAA and confirming that the same was conducted in accordance with the protocol of the PNP. To suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua. To pay the private complainant AAA the amount of P50. in view of the unavailability of Dr. Labia majora are full. Cases Nos.00 for moral damages. Case No.00 for moral damages. he is.8 However. d. Quezon City. appellant immediately went home and found his eldest son taking care of his other children.000.00. In Crim.000. Belgira as the medico-legal officer of the PNP Crime Laboratory15.00 for civil indemnity. Case No. another physician at the PNP crime laboratory. premises considered. Mateo. and 3. (3) the baptismal certificate of AAA with her date of birth entered as 12 August 198312. In the event.000. (9) the initial laboratory report issued by the PNP Crime Laboratory18. cellphone or send text messages or with the use of any electrical devices.9 The prosecution also presented documentary evidence to bolster its version of the events.21 On 27 July 2004. 4103. Vaginal canal is narrow with prominent rugosities. (6) the medico-legal report with regard to AAA issued and signed by Dr. There are no external signs of application of any form of physical trauma. 2.000. e. forever barred from showing himself to the private complainant. Q-99-87055. He was released on 29 March 1998.000. To suffer the penalty of DEATH. accused-appellant is ordered to pay the victim AAA the amounts of P75. promulgated on 04 August 2004.00 for moral damages. Case No.000. to wit: THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN NOT CONSIDERING THE INFORMATIONS CHARGING THE ACCUSED-APPELLANT OF THE CRIME OF RAPE INSUFFICIENT TO SUPPORT A JUDGMENT OF CONVICTION FOR FAILURE OF THE PROSECUTION TO STATE WITH PARTICULARITY THE APPROXIMATE DATE OF THE COMMISSION OF THE ALLEGED RAPES. He must not approach the private complainant. he worked as a driver. Novaliches. f. Q-99-87054: a. appellant was sentenced to death. the Decision dated 27 July 2004. (10) the sexual crime narrative report based on the narration of AAA19. The accused is hereby sentenced: 1. To pay the private complainant AAA the amount of P75. c. From 1992 to 1996. as amended. Q-99-87055: a. To pay the private complainant AAA the amount of P50.00 for exemplary damages.000. To indemnify the private complainant AAA the amount of P75.24 Before us.23 On 3 August 2006. Q-99-87053: a. by reason of Republic Act No. telephone. b.20 Appellant singly testified in his own behalf and denied the foregoing accusations. and (11) manifestation of consent executed by AAA as accompanied by PO3 Baldeswis. To pay the private complainant AAA the amount of P75. To pay the costs of the suit. otherwise known as the Indeterminate Sentence Law. To suffer the penalty of DEATH.00 by way of civil indemnity. convex and slightly gaping with an area of erythematous at the middle of the left labium and the dark brown labia minora presenting in between. appellant assigns a single error. and e. b.00 for exemplary damages. it was Dr. He admitted that AAA is his daughter and third child with his wife. he learned that BBB asked AAA to find a job and that BBB was subsequently detained for drugs. (5) joint sworn affidavit of the arresting officers14. This purportedly irked AAA and the latter’s employer. In Criminal Cases No. however.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 There is scanty growth of pubic hair. To pay the private complainant AAA the amount of P75. (7) the routing slip from the PNP Crime Laboratory16. In Crim. he shall never contact the private complainant directly or indirectly either by letters. of the instant case to the Office of the City Prosecutor13. c.25 8 . 9346. BBB.

32 In People v. the following shall be imposed: a) the penalty of reclusion perpetua. This Court has upheld complaints and informations in prosecutions for rape which merely alleged the month and year of its commission. provided it appears that the specific crime charged was in fact committed prior to the date of the filing of the complaint or information within the period of the statute of limitations and at a place within the jurisdiction of the court. the time the first rape was committed. Rule 110 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure specifically provides that it is not necessary to state in the information the precise date the offense was committed except when it is a material ingredient of the offense. that she talked with comadre because the latter took all the necessary papers relevant to the birth of AAA.29 With respect to the date of the commission of the offense. Q-99-87054 and Q-99-87055 specifically alleged that AAA was a minor at the time she was raped and that the offender. Notwithstanding the reduction of the penalty imposed on appellant. It is sufficient that the complaint or information states that the crime has been committed at any time as near as possible to the date of its actual commission. the approximate date of the commission of the offense. that the informations in the instant case do not state the approximate time of the alleged rapes. 28 The purpose of the requirement for the information’s validity and sufficiency is to enable the accused to suitably prepare for his defense since he is presumed to have no independent knowledge of the facts that constitute the offense. subscribed by the prosecutor and filed with the court. BBB submitted AAA’s baptismal certificate dated 23 August 2001 issued by Rev. in view of the effectivity of Republic Act No. in the absence of a certificate of live birth. As such. was the law applicable in the year 1996. for the gravamen of the offense is carnal knowledge of a woman. the time or place of commission in rape cases need not be accurately stated. Romeo M. an information must state the name of the accused. Hence. In rape cases. the prosecution adduced the marriage contract of appellant and BBB showing that they were married on 29 February 1980. appellant cannot complain that he was deprived of the right to be informed of the nature of the case filed against him. the designation of the offense given by the statute.30 In sustaining the view that the exact date of commission of the rape is immaterial. This implies that AAA was about 13 years old at the time she was raped by appellant in 1996. that the date and time of the alleged rapes are so indefinite thereby depriving appellant of the opportunity to prepare for his defense. Fr. BBB testified during the trial that at the time she gave birth to AAA through the assistance of a comadrona. 8353. Magbanua. and that comadre told her that such papers were lost. Q-99-87053. he is not eligible for parole following Section 3 of said law which provides: 9 . The reason is obvious. that to the best of her knowledge. conviction may be had on proof of the commission of the crime. Quezon City. thus: Although the information did not state with particularity the dates when the sexual attacks took place. and the place where the offense was committed. Further. In lieu of the death penalty. Section 11. was the law pertinent to the two rapes committed in May 1998. 7659. or if the proof fails to sustain the existence of some immaterial fact set out in the complaint. or b) the penalty of life imprisonment. Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code. As early as 1908. Kamuning. the penalty of death for each of the three counts of rape committed against AAA is proper. the prosecution was not able to present the birth certificate of AAA because. we already held that where the time or place or any other fact alleged is not an essential element of the crime charged. The baptismal certificate also states that appellant is the father of AAA. according to BBB. and that appellant’s constitutional right to be informed of the nature and cause of accusation against him was violated. even if it appears that the crime was not committed at the precise time or place alleged. SVD. that the informations are fatally defective. However. similar authentic documents.34 The informations in Criminal Cases No.26 The contentions are devoid of merit. An information can withstand the test of judicial scrutiny as long as it distinctly states the statutory designation of the offense and the acts or omissions constitutive thereof. such as a baptismal certificate. As such. the allegations in the informations which stated that the three incidents of rape were committed in the year 1996 and in May 1998 are sufficient to affirm the conviction of appellant in the instant case. the date or time need not be stated with absolute accuracy. the best evidence to prove the age of the offended party for the purpose of appreciating the qualifying circumstance of minority is an original or certified true copy of the certificate of live birth of such party. as amended by Republic Act No. we held in People v. time and again that the date is not an essential element of the crime of rape. comadre registered the birth of AAA.27 To be considered as valid and sufficient. The date or time of the commission of rape is not a material ingredient of the said crime because the gravamen of rape is carnal knowledge of a woman through force and intimidation. otherwise known as the Anti-Rape Law of 1997.38 Appellant admitted that AAA is his daughter and BBB is his wife. which show the date of birth of the victim would suffice to prove age.35 In the case at bar. and that the offense may be alleged to have been committed on a date as near as possible to the actual date of its commission. Since the sole issue raised by appellant was resolved by this Court in favor of the validity of the informations filed against him. we believe that the allegations therein that the acts were committed "on (sic) the year 1991 and the days thereafter" substantially apprised appellant of the crime he was charged with since all the essential elements of the crime of rape were stated in the information.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 Appellant maintains that the approximate time of the commission of the offense must be stated in the complaint or information.36 Nonetheless. The prosecution also proved during the trial the presence of the qualifying circumstances of minority and relationship through documentary and testimonial evidence. when the law violated makes use of the nomenclature of the penalties of the Revised Penal Code. However.39 Given the foregoing considerations.37 The baptismal certificate states that AAA was born on 12 August 1983. herein appellant. then the subsequent trial court proceedings and the resulting judgment of conviction against appellant should likewise be affirmed. that when AAA was about to enroll in school. the penalty to be meted to appellant shall be reclusion perpetua in accordance with Section 2 thereof which reads: SECTION 2. she went to the Quezon City Hall to secure a birth certificate of AAA but she was told therein that there are no records of birth of AAA. is her father. Parish Priest of Sacred Heart Parish. Purazo31 that: We have ruled. when the law violated does not make use of the nomenclature of the penalties of the Revised Penal Code. Castro. the acts or omissions complained of as constituting the offense. There is no cogent reason to deviate from these precedents especially so that all the essential elements of rape were also stated in the informations. An information is an accusation in writing charging a person with an offense. On the other hand. the birth of AAA was not registered with the appropriate government agencies. As a rule. the name of the offended party. We further uphold the penalty imposed on appellant by the Court of Appeals.33 we sustained the validity of the information for rape which merely alleged the year of its commission. the latter told her that a neighbor known only as comadre volunteered and suggested to register the birth of AAA together with the registration of birth of comadre’s child. 9346 prohibiting the imposition of the death penalty. Republic Act No. Both laws state that the death penalty shall be imposed if the rape victim is a minor and the offender is a parent. The precise time when the rape took place has no substantial bearing on its commission. As such. The qualifying circumstances of minority of the victim and the latter’s relationship with the offender must be alleged in the complaint or information and proved during the trial to warrant the imposition of the death penalty. there being no other questions raised by appellant as to them. failure to specify the exact dates or times when the rapes occurred does not ipso facto make the information defective on its face. and that she was barely 14 years and 9 months old when she was twice raped by appellant in May 1998.

00 is fitting even though it was not pleaded or its basis established by evidence.40 Further. shall not be eligible for parole under Act No. Branch 58 in Criminal Case No. as amended. except on Saturdays. Mateo. and to remain thereat until the penalty imposed upon him may be served. which reads: That on or about the month of August 1996.] willfully. did then and there[. the amount of P75. 96-601 before the Lucena City Regional Trial Court. 00-5-03-SC which took effect on October 15.00.00. let the entire records of this case be elevated to the Supreme Court for review. a minor. The Branch Clerk of Court is hereby directed to forward the entire records of this case to the Supreme Court. pulled down her underwear.00. consistent. however. Further. 1996. by means of force. Quezon.P. Philippines[. 2006.00 is the correct amount to be awarded if the crime is qualified by circumstances that warrant the imposition of the death penalty. his own daughter. threats and intimidation. Accused-appellant denied the accusation and gave his side of the case as follows: He could not have raped AAA as his job as a canvasser of plastic wares required him to be out of the house most of the time. Muntinlupa City. and inserted his penis in her vagina.-H. The Jail Warden.[6] On September 12. 4103. as exemplary damages. Persons convicted of offenses punished with reclusion perpetua. premises considered.R. No costs. is hereby ordered to immediately deliver the person of Meliton Jalbuena y Tadiosa to the National Bilibid Prisons. as amended by R. otherwise. as well as to her mother BBB who refused to believe it.[14] disposing as follows: WHEREFORE. We also sustain the award of damages made by the Court of Appeals in favor of AAA for each of the three rapes. 1996. Rule 124 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure. this Court referred the case to the Court of Appeals by Resolution of July 26.000.[4] The incident was repeated on two other occasions. date and time of the commission of the offense. direct and without any hesitation when confronted by the presence of her own abuser.000. 7659. the last of which was in the morning and witnessed by her uncle CCC while accused-appellant was on top of her. for automatic review of the case pursuant to the provision of Article 47 of the Revised Penal Code. With respect to moral damages.[3] From the evidence for the prosecution. pursuant to prevailing jurisprudence. as moral damages.41 WHEREFORE. defined and punished under Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code. as civil indemnity. found the testimony of AAA “clear. Meliton Jalbuena y Tadiosa is hereby sentenced to suffer the extreme penalty of DEATH. accused-appellant’s indictment. underscoring supplied) This case was forwarded to this Court for automatic review in view of the death penalty imposed. 2007 x-----------------------------------------------------------------------------x Accused-appellant Meliton Jalbuena y Tadiosa was charged with rape of a daughter. docketed as Criminal Case No. C.[8] Appellant’s wife BBB corroborated his claim. By Resolution of February 21.[13] The appellate court. In accordance with A. No. to an aunt. Per People v.[2] against her will. after due deliberation. this Court required the parties to submit Supplemental Briefs within 30 days from notice if they so desire. P50. in the Municipality of Tayabas.C. affirmed the Judgment of the trial court by Decision of November 18. the present review of the case.[17] In his Brief filed before the appellate court. 2003:[10] WHEREFORE.”[9] It discredited appellant’s defense of alibi. CCC reported what he saw to AAA’s grandfather who merely advised her to avoid her father. TABUENA July 4. accused MELITON JALBUENA y TADIOSA of Bgy. Marilyn Salumbides examined AAA and reduced her findings to writing as follows: P.[5] AAA later mustered enough courage to narrate her ordeals to two classmates who reported them to their teacher. or whose sentences will be reduced to reclusion perpetua. 2005. [AAA] the amounts of P75.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 SECTION 3. The award of civil indemnity in the amount of P75. something bad would occur to her. at Barangay Ilayang Nangka. Province of Quezon. 11 years of age.: Normal Looking External Genitalia Internal Exam – admits tip of finger with difficulty Hymen – intact Vaginal Smear taken for Spermatozoa – NONE SEEN x x x x[7] (Emphasis supplied) . the following version is culled: In the morning of August 19.M. and P25.000. the above-named accused. Dr. with lewd design. Branch 58 of the RTC of Lucena City. albeit he would return home in the afternoon or evening. placed himself on top of her. Lucena City. who in turn reported and brought her to the school principal. 96601 finding MELITON JALBUENA y TADIOSA guilty of Statutory Rape and sentencing him to suffer the supreme penalty of DEATH is hereby AFFIRMED.000. accused is hereby ordered to pay to the offended party. unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge of one [AAA].000. The trial court thus disposed in its Judgment of September 11. accused-appellant faulted the trial court (1) for convicting him despite the failure of the prosecution to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt and (2) in not considering the information insufficient to support a judgment of conviction for failure to state the precise date of the commission of the rape.[1] in an Information. otherwise known as the Indeterminate Sentence Law. amending Section 13. 2004. as amended. Hence.[18] 10 PEOPLE VS. and in the absence of any mitigating circumstance and with the special aggravating circumstances of minority and relationship alleged and duly proven by the prosecution. No. She was warned not to report the incident to anyone.[12] however.[15] (Emphasis in the original) Hence. Ilayang Nangka. the Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. Manila. Tayabas.000.[11] (Emphasis in the original. by reason of this Act. 01798 dated 3 August 2006 is hereby AFFIRMED in toto. SO ORDERED.[16] Both parties filed their respective Manifestations that they are no longer filing any Supplemental Briefs. 2005.] and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court. her father-accused-appellant approached AAA while she was in bed. Quezon Provincial Jail. there being no proof that it was physically impossible for him to be at the place. the appealed judgment dated September 11.A. a minor.00 is authorized due to the presence of the qualifying circumstances of minority and relationship. finding that the testimony of AAA is credible and free from material inconsistencies and contradictions.R. while her mother BBB was out of the house. 2003 of the Regional Trial Court of Lucena City.E. is hereby found guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of statutory rape. the award of exemplary damages in the amount of P25.

the credibility of the victim is almost always the single most important issue. in the presence of the public and her father.[36] several subpoenas[37] for.[39] On accused-appellant’s alibi. this Court held that parental punishment or disciplinary chastisement is not enough for a daughter in a Filipino family to falsely accuse her father of rape. the specification of the exact date or time of its commission is not important. undergo the trauma and humiliation of public trial. is sentenced to suffer reclusion perpetua without eligibility for parole.” accused-appellant must be sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua without eligibility for parole. Appellant questions as fatally defective the information for failure to allege the date and time of the commission of the offense charged.[41] The qualifying circumstances of minority and relationship were alleged and established.000 which was awarded by the trial court and affirmed by the appellate court.[32] A torn or broken hymen is not an essential element of rape. however. it must be established with clear and convincing evidence not only that he was somewhere else when the crime was committed. x x x [A] daughter would not accuse her own father of a serious offense like rape. if the appellant was of the belief that the criminal complaint was defective. the rule is settled that for it to prosper. 2005 Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G. the subpoena/warrant officer of the Philippine National Police in Tayabas. so he claims. first be resolved. the death penalty imposed by the trial court and affirmed by the Court of Appeals is proper. the prerogative to determine the witnesses he is going to present. but also that it was physically impossible for him to have been at the scene of the crime at the time of its commission. It was only when the case was brought to this Court on automatic review that he raised the question of the supposed insufficiency of the criminal complaint. which is now too late by any reckoning. as provided for under Rule 116. as it was shown to the contrary that he participated in the trial and was even able to give an alibi in his defense. her mother was out of their home. Rule 110 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure. to the prosecutor. some are elastic and flexible that even in cases of several deliveries. drag herself and the rest of her family to a lifetime of shame. In view. on cross. passing on AAA’s credibility.000. Her testimony is one and the same – her father sexually abused her not once. Besides. the records show that on the request of the prosecution. Worse. and embarrass herself with the need to narrate in detail how she was raped if she was not in fact raped. of the subsequent enactment on June 24. 11.[26] If the testimony of the victim passes the test of credibility.RULE 110 SECTION 11 (Criminal Procedure0 The second assigned error shall. for obvious reasons. and that every time she was subjected to this maltreatment. the accused may be convicted solely on that basis.[29] her testimony is entitled to greater weight.[19] (Emphasis and underscoring supplied) In rape. Meliton Jalbuena y Tadiosa. placed his sexual organ into her own private part and made push and pull.[33] Dr. The appellant failed to do so. the amount of P50.[21] If accused-appellant found the information defective as it bears only the month and year of the incident complained of. CCC. he should have filed a Motion for Bill of Particulars. had ceased to reside in Barangay Ilayang Nangka and his whereabouts could not be ascertained. Section 11. and make them the object of gossip among their classmates and friends. he goes home in the afternoon or early evening. 11 .[40] This. 01496 is AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION in that in lieu of death penalty. to the teacher. 2006 of Republic Act No. had she really not been aggrieved.[30] (Underscoring supplied) Accused-appellant’s claim that AAA charged him with rape because he would scold her very often does not impress. and the award of P50. but thrice.000 for moral damages.[42] A word on the award of moral damages.[31] (Underscoring supplied) That AAA’s hymen remained intact despite the claim of three occasions of rape is not impossible and does not negate a finding that they were committed. People v.C. The Court finds [AAA’s] testimony to have passed said test. And accused-appellant questions the prosecution’s failure to present as witness AAA’s uncle CCC who allegedly saw him on top of AAA. hence. Her testimony against him is entitled to greater weight. It is noted that [AAA] had to tell her story several times – to her two classmates. Rule 110 of the Rules of Court. she was always warned not to tell anyone about the incidents or her father would kill her. It takes depravity for a young girl to concoct a tale of defloration. as in this case where AAA accused her very own father. like in this case. which would put her own father on death row. His failure to do so amounted to a waiver of the defect or detail desired in the information. is increased to P75. Salumbides that her hymen was intact. noted: The credibility of the testimony of the offended party is put to a stringent test in order that it could be said as credible to sustain a conviction. x x x That she would accuse her own father of this heinous crime had she not been aggrieved would be absurd. being the carnal knowledge of a woman. the trial court.” Such an allegation in the criminal complaint as to the time of the offense was committed is sufficient compliance with the provisions of Section 11. the doctor. Bidoc instructs: x x x In previous cases. not even when the victim is an innocent child. as well as bench warrants[38] against. willful suppression of evidence. accused-appellant participated in the trial and never objected to the presentation of evidence by the prosecution that the rape was committed “on or about the month of August 1996.[27] Significantly. in the case at bar. Time of the commission of the offense. prior and subsequent thereto. or rubbing motions (binubundol-bundol o ikinikiskis). for failure to serve the subpoena. [20] In statutory rape. the criminal complaint states that the rape was committed “on or about the month of August 1996.R. in light of the finding of Dr. “An Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty in the Philippines. 9346. a prosecutor has the discretion.examination. The trial court in fact even reprimanded on one occasion SPO2 Edilberto Conjares. the police. which failure amounts to. the date is not an essential element. Hence. since reverence and respect for elders is too deeply ingrained in Filipino children and is even recognized by law. Quezon.[43] WHEREFORE. Prior to its substantial incorporation in the Revised Rules of Court in 2000. he admitted that after work. the hymen remains intact.[28] (Underscoring supplied) Apropos is this Court’s taking stock of the fact that when one accuses a close relative of having raped her. thus violating his constitutionally protected right to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against him and depriving him of the opportunity to prepare for his defense.[23] Indeed. but the act may be alleged to have been committed at any time as near to the actual date at which offense was committed as the information or complaint will permit. She would not subject herself to an examination of her private parts. is increased to P75.” Appellant likewise never objected to the presentation of evidence by the prosecution to prove that the offenses were committed “on or about sometime (sic) 1987. to the social worker and to this Court.000. Her testimony given in open court is clear. direct and without any hesitation when confronted by the presence of her own abuser.[24] At all events. Salumbides. CCC were issued. the assailed November 18. the principal. laid on top of her. testified that there are several classes of hymen. her father would pull down her panty. however. the Municipal Trial Court Judge who conducted the preliminary investigation. In rape cases. In accordance with prevailing jurisprudence.[22] before he entered a plea. the gravamen of the offense.[35] In any event.[25] (Italics in the original) On the merits.[34] As to the failure of the prosecution to present AAA’s uncle CCC and to proffer a plausible explanation therefor. No. – It is not necessary to state in the complaint or information the precise time at which the offense was committed except when the time is a material ingredient of the offense.” He cannot now pretend that he was unable to defend himself in view of the vagueness of the allegation in the Information as to when the crimes were committed. reads: Sec. SO ORDERED. what matters most is that the information alleges that the victim is a minor under twelve years of age and that the accused had carnal knowledge of her. As reflected above. accusedappellant failed to do. accused-appellant assails the credibility of AAA’s testimony that she was raped three times. accused-appellant. consistent. CR-H. he should have filed a motion for a bill of particulars with the trial court before his arraignment.

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