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People vs.

Famularcano Facts: Famularcano, a driver at the Camp John Hay, followedDionisia after she alighted from the truck. She took her bythe waist, held her to his breast and private parts. Sheresisted and was able to extricate herself. She thenwalked towards the house of her friend, instead of goinghome.When a complaint for acts of lasciviousness was filedagainst him, Famularcano claimed that he had no intentionof having sexual intercourse with her. He did the acts a s arevenge for what Dionisias father did to his wife. Issue: Whether or not actsof lasciviousness has a frustrated stage. HELD: The accused cannot be convicted of frustrated actsof lasciviousness for under the very terms of the law suchfrustration can never take place. In cases of acts oflasciviousness, as in all cases of crimes against chastity likeadultery and rape, from the moment the offender performsall the elements necessary for the existence of the felony,he actually attains his purpose, and from that moment, all the essential elements of the offense have also beenaccomplished. Motive of revenge is of no consequencesince the essence of lewdness is in the very act itself. Hewas convicted of consummated acts of lasciviousness. People vs. Fontanilla Facts: Fe Castro, a fifteen-year old virgin, was brought by hermother to the house of the appellant and his second wifeto serve as a helper. Fe Castro testified that during herstay in the house of Fontanilla for about three months the accused succeeded in having carnal knowledge of her repeatedly, the total number of times she could not recall.She was certain, however, that the accused consummatedthe first sexual intercourse with her one night inSeptember. She also declared that prior to this incident,the accused had made amorous overtures and advancestoward her. Aside from giving her money, the accused repeatedly promised to abandon his wife to live with her. Fe Castro repeatedly yielded to the carnal desires of theaccused, as she was induced by his promises of marriageand frightened by his acts of intimidation. Their intimacieslasted for almost three months until her aunt, the wife ofthe accused, caught them in flagrante on the kitchen floor.The following day she returned to her parents, and revealed everything to her mother two days later.Fontanilla denies everything. Issue: Whether or not deceit is an element of the crime of qualified seduction. HELD: It was qualified seduction. Anent the said marital promise, Fontanilla also claims that there is no evidence on record supporting its veracity. Granting this to be correct,it is nevertheless settled that deceit, although an essentialelement of ordinary or simple seduction, does not need tobe proved or established in a charge of qualified seduction. It is replaced by abuse of confidence. When the offender isa public officer, a priest or minister, a servant, domestic,tutor, teacher, or under any title is in charge of theeducation or keeping of the offended woman, as in thepresent case, the act is punishable although fraud or deceitmay not have been used or, if employed, has not been proved. The seduction of a virgin over twelve and undereighteen years of age, committed by any of the persons enumerated in Art. 337 "is constitutive of the crime ofqualified seduction . . . even though no deceit intervenesor even when such carnal knowledge were voluntary on thepart of the virgin, because in such a case, the law takes forgranted the existence of the deceit as an integral elementof the said crime and punishes it with greater severity thanit does the simple seduction . . . taking into account theabuse of confidence on the part of the agent (culprit), an abuse of confidence which implies deceit or fraud." Babanto vs. Zosa Facts: Babanto, a policeman, brought Leonida Dagohoy, 13 years old andwith low mentality, to the ABC Hall where he succeeded inhaving sexual intercourse with her. Babanto was chargedwith rape but convicted of qualified seduction. Issue: Whether or not virginity must be alleged in the complaint in order to qualify the crime to qualified seduction.

HELD: The complaint filed alleged that the accused abusedhis position as policeman by having carnal knowledge of a13 year old girl. However, there is no allegation that thecomplainant was a virgin. Though it is true that virginity is presumed if the girl is over 12 but under 18, unmarried andof good reputation, virginity is still an essential element ofthe crime of qualified seduction and must be alleged in thecomplaint. A conviction of the crime of qualified seductionwithout the allegation of virginity would violate thepetitioners right to be informed of the nature and cause ofthe accusation against him. Petitioner is guilty of rape,consider the victims age, mental abnormality anddeficiency. There was also sufficient intimidation with theaccused wearing his uniform. Perez vs. CA Facts: Perez was able to have sexual intercourse with Mendozatwice after he promised marriage to her. As he did notmake good on said promises, Mendoza filed a complaint forConsented Abduction. The trial court found that the actsconstituted seduction, and so it acquitted him on thecharge of consented abduction. Mendoza then filed acomplaint for qualified seduction. Perez moved to quashon the grounds of double jeopardy. Issue: Whether or not acquittal from the crime of consented abduction will prejudice the filing of the crime of qualified seduction. HELD: There are similar elements between ConsentedAbduction and Qualified Seduction, namely: (1) theoffended party is a virgin, and (2) over 12 but under 18years of age. However, there are other elements whichdifferentiate the two crimes. For example, consentedabduction requires the taking away of the victim withouther consent, while qualified seduction requires that therebe abuse of authority, confidence or relationship. Thus, anacquittal for Consented Abduction will not preclude thefiling of a charge for Qualified Seduction, because theelements of the two crimes are different.

People vs. Sunpongco Facts: Juanita Angeles was abducted from the jeepney by SilvestreSunpongco with the aid of 3 men and was brought to Hilltop Hotel where Silvestre succeeded in having sexual intercourse with her. Issue: HELD. Article 344 of the RPC and the Rules on Criminal Procedure require that the offenses of abduction and rape and other offenses which cannot be prosecuted de oficio shall not be prosecuted except upon complaint filed by the offended party. In the CAB, it is admitted that the sworn complaint of the victim was not formally offered in evidence by the prosecution. This failure to adhere to the rules however is not fatal and did not oust the court of itsjurisdiction to hear and decide the case. Whether or not the crime of rape can be prosecuted de oficio.

Jurisprudence reveals that if the complaint in a case whichcannot be prosecuted de oficio is forwarded to the trialcourt as part of the records of the preliminary investigationof the case, the court can take judicial notice of the same without the necessity of its formal introduction as evidence for the prosecution. The records of the case forwarded tothe CFI include the complaint filed by Juanita in the municipal court of Guiguinto which conducted thepreliminary investigation. Subject complaint was also marked as an exhibit. People vs Jose Facts: June 26, 1967 Magdalena de la Riva was abducted outside her own by Jaime Jose, Edgardo Aquino, Basilio Pineda and Rogelio Canal. They brought Maggie to Swanky Hotel. Jose, Aquino, Pineda and Canal took turns raping Maggie. They decided to leave her on a spot in front of the Free Press Building not far from Epifanio de los Santos Avenue near Channel 5 to make it appear, according to them, that the complainant had just come from the studio. They threatened that she would be doused with acid if she would inform anyone of the incident. When she was inside the cab and alone with the driver, Miguel F. Campos, she broke down and cried. She kept asking the driver if a car was following them; and each time the driver answered her in the negative When she reached home she informed her mother of the incident. Appellant Canal and Pineda executed swore to separate statements on the day of their arrest. 1.Caal confirmed the information previously given by Jose that the four of them waited for Miss De la Riva to come down from the ABS Studio, and that they had planned to abduct and rape her. Appellant Caal admitted that all four of them participated in the commission of the crime, but he would make it appear that insofar as he was concerned the complainant yielded her body to him on condition that he would release her 2.Pineda executed a statement stating that he and his other three companions wept to the ABS Studio, and that, on learning that Miss De la Riva was there, they made plans to wait for her and to follow her. He admitted that his group followed her car and snatched her and took her to the Swanky Hotel. He would make it appear, however, that the complainant voluntarily acceded to having sexual intercourse with him. Jose, Aquino, Canal pleaded not guilty while Pineda pleaded guilty. Issue: Whether or not the crime of forcible abduction can be complexed with the crime of rape. HELD: While the first act of rape was being performed, thecrime of forcible abduction had already been consummated, so that each of the three succeeding crimesof the same nature cannot legally be considered as stillconnected with the abduction. In other words, they should be detached from, and considered independently of, thatof forcible abduction, and therefore, the former can no longer be complexed with the latter. As regards therefore, the complex crime of forciblea bduction with rape, the first of the crimes committed, the latter is definitely the more serious crime. Hence,pursuant to Article 48, the penalty prescribed shall beimposed in the maximum period. Consequently, theaccused should suffer the extreme penalty of death. No need to consider aggravating circumstances for the same would not alter the nature of the penalty imposed. People vs. Alburo Facts: Alburo and 2 other men raped Evelyn Cantina. She was a jeepney passenger when she was prevented from leavingthe jeepney, taken to a remote place and was raped there. Issue: Whether or not the crime of forcible abduction can be complexed with the crime of rape. HELD: They are guilty of the complex crime of FORCIBLE ABDUCTION WITH RAPE. In reviewing the evidenceadduced by the prosecution for this crime of Rape, we havelikewise been guided by three well-known principles ,namely, (1) that an accusation of rape can be made with facility, is difficult to prove, but more difficult for the person accused,

though innocent, to disprove; (2) thatin view of the intrinsic nature of the crime of rapewhere only two persons are usually involved, thetestimony of the complainant must be scrutinized withextreme caution; and (3) that the evidence for the prosecution must stand or fall on its own merits, and cannot be allowed to draw strength from theweaknesses of the evidence for the defense. The factual milieu of this criminal charge before us gives us no reason to depart from these established rules. On thecontrary, we find that Appellant had taken Evelyn awayagainst her will, with lewd designs, subsequently forcedher to submit to his lust and rendering her unconscious inthe process, thereby justifying his conviction for thecomplex crime of Forcible Abduction with Rape underArticle 48 in relation to Articles 335 and 342 of the RevisedPenal Code, with which he has herein been charged. People vs. Godines Facts: Esther Ancajas witnessed the killing of Vilaksi by the 2 accused.The accused, upon seeing her with her baby, dragged herto a vacant lot where they took turns in raping her. Trialcourt convicted them of the crime of rape. Issue: Whether or not the crime of forcible abduction is absorbed in the crime of rape. HELD: Trial Court correctly held that forcible abduction is absorbed in the crime of rape if the main objective of the accused is to rape the victim.The appellants are charged of conspiring and confederating with each other in the commission of the offense charged. No doubt the evidence show the appellants through force and intimidation and conspiring with each other successfully raped the victim by taking turns in raping her while the other held the child of the victim and threatened her against resisting. Obviously two (2) rapes were committed by the appellants. In a conspiracy the act of one is the act of all.

People vs. Sangalang Facts: The Sangalang spouses together with Gloria and Bienvenidowere charged of the crime of simulation of birth. Theinformation alleged that a child was furnished by Gloria to the Sangalangs. Accused Bienvenido registered the birth of said child in the local civil registrar by supplying to said office the necessary information required so that a birth certificate would be issued. He named the Sangalangs asthe childs parents. A birth certificate was hence issued.Information did not contain any specific allegation as to what the spouses did, except that they had conspired with Gloria and Bienvenido. Issue: Whether or not the act of registration is a requirement to commit the crime of simulation of birth. HELD: In the crime of simulation of births, it must beshown that the pretending parents have registered or caused in the registration of the child as their own with theRegistry of Births, or that in doing so they were motivatedby a desire to cause the loss of any trace as to the childstrue filiation to his prejudice.In the instant case, SC found no evidence to sport thefinding of Trial Court that the registration was effected by theSangalangs. As the evidence would show, it was their daughter Alicia (not Bienvenido, but still not the spouses)who had a hand in the registration of the child). People vs. Aragon Facts: Proceso Rosima contracted marriage with Gorrea. While his marriage with the latter subsist, he contracted a canonical marriage with Faicol. Gorrea is staying in Cebu while Faicol is in Iloilo. He was a traveling salesman thus, he commuted between Iloilo and Cebu. When Gorrea died, he brought Faicol to Cebu where the latter worked as teacher-nurse. She later on suffered injuries in her eyes caused by physical maltreatment of Rosima and was sent to Iloilo to undergo treatment. While she was in Iloilo, Rosima contracted a third marriage with Maglasang. CFI-Cebu found him guilty of bigamy.

ISSUE: Whether or not the third marriage is null and void. HELD: The action was instituted upon the complaint of the second wife whose marriage with Rosima was not renewed after the death of the first wife and before the third marriage was entered into. Hence, the last marriage was a valid one and prosecution against Rosima for contracting marriage cannot prosper.
Tenebro vs Court of Appeals

Facts: Tenebro contracted marriage with Ancajas in 1990. The two lived together continuously and without interruption until the latter part of 1991, when Tenebro informed Ancajas that he had been previously married to a certain Hilda Villareyes in 1986. Petitioner thereafter left the conjugal dwelling which he shared with Ancajas, stating that he was going to cohabit with Villareyes. In 1993, petitioner contracted yet another marriage with a certain Nilda Villegas. Ancajas thereafter filed a complaint for bigamy against petitioner. Villegas countered that his marriage with Villareyes cannot be proven as a fact there being no record of such. He further argued that his second marriage, with Ancajas, has been declared void ab initio due to psychological incapacity. Hence he cannot be charged for bigamy. ISSUE: Whether or not Tenebro is guilty of bigamy. HELD: The prosecution was able to establish the validity of the first marriage. As a second or subsequent marriage contracted during the subsistence of petitioners valid marriage to Villareyes, petitioners marriage to Ancajas would be null and void ab initio completely regardless of petitioners psychological capacity or incapacity. Since a marriage contracted during the subsistence of a valid marriage is automatically void, the nullity of this second marriage is not per se an argument for the avoidance of criminal liability for bigamy. Pertinently, Article 349 of the Revised Penal Code criminalizes any person who shall contract a second or subsequent marriage before the former marriage has been legally dissolved, or before the absent spouse has been declared presumptively dead by means of a judgment rendered in the proper proceedings. A plain reading of the law, therefore, would indicate that the provision penalizes the mere act of contracting a second or a subsequent marriage during the subsistence of a valid marriage. Malit vs. People Facts: Petitioner Malit was counselof a certain Ruth Fernandez in an administrative case filed against her by a Dr. Macaspac. On cross examination by Malit stated I doubt how did youbecome a doctor because Dr. Macaspac would not understand the word made. Hence, Dr. Macaspac filed a complaint for slander (but an information for UNJUST VEXATION was filed). Issue: Whether or not the utterance of the counsel is privileged in nature. Held: Well settled rule that parties, counsel and witnesses are exemptedf r o m l i a b i l i t y f r o m l i b e l o r s l a n d e r c a s e s f o r w o r d s o t h e r w i s e defamatory, uttered or published in the course of judicial proceedings, provided the statements are pertinent or relevant to the case Utterances made in the course of judi cial or administrativeproceedings belong to the class of communications that are absolutelyprivileged.

Mercado vs. CFI 1 Facts: A telegram (by Rafael Mercado) addressed to a superior officer (Sec. David Consunji; Dep. Of Public Works and Communications) asked to investigate private respondent Virginia Mercados assets since the letter alleged that she has enriched herself thru corrupt practices (since her husband was jobless and she had assets which her salary could not possibly afford). Issue: Whether or not qualified privileged communication may be lost. Held: In United States vs. Bustos a qualified privilege maybe lost by proof of malice; qualified privilege - > complaint made in good faith and without malice in regard to the character or conduct of a public official when addressed to an officer or a board having some interest or duty in the matter. In the case at bar, what casts doubt on the good faith of petitioner is his tenacity with which he had pursued a course of conduct on its face would seem to indicated that a doubt could reasonably be entertained (even if Virginia had proven to be innocent of the charges against her) Qualified privileges can be lost by proof of malice; letters to a board or superior officer are only qualified privileges

Agbayani vs. Sayo Facts: Mahinan filed a complaint of libel against his subordinates in GSIS (Agbayani et al) for making documents that allegedly depicted him as an incorrigible managerial misfit, despoiler of public office, spendthrift of GSIS funds, inveterate gambler, chronic falsifier and an unreformed convict Issue: Whether or not the crime of libel can be prosecuted in any court where the libelous article circulated. Held: Mahinan cannot file his case in CFI of Nueva Viscaya since he was stationed in Isabela where the alleged libel was committed. Actions for damages in cases of written defamations shall be filed in the courts within the province or city where the libelous article is printed and first published (regardless of where it was written) or where the offended parties actually reside at the time of the commission of the offense. Newsweek vs. IAC Facts: Private respondents, incorporated associations of sugarcane planters, filed a libel suit against Newsweek for its article which portrayed Negros Occidental as a place dominated by sugarcane planters who exploited workers and brutalized them with impunity. Issue: Whether or not the sugarcane planters are directly injured by the articles of Newsweek. Held: 1. Complainants have no cause of action for it made no allegation that anything contained in the article referred to specifically to any one of them. In order to maintain a libel suit, it is essential that the victim be identifiable. 2. Defamatory remarks directed at a group of persons is not actionable UNLESS the statements are all-embracing or sufficiently specific for victim to be identifiable.

Lacsa vs. IAC Facts: Lacsa was a CPA and a member of the Board of Directors of the Phil. Columbian Association; complainant is Ponciano Marquez (President of Board). Lacsa had access to the records of its members and he discovered that Marquez was a mere associate member of the association. Hence, he questioned Marquezs qualifications and wrote a letter to the Board (and even to Marquez; which was later published and circulated to the members) branded Marquez as a DE FACTO president. Issue: Whether or not a mere letter, though circulated, will lose its privileged nature. Held: 1. Test of libelous meaning is NOT the analysis of a sentence into component phrases with the meticulous care of the grammarian or stylist, but the import conveyed by the entirety of the language to the ordinary reader. 2. Even if the letter is a privileged communication, it lost its character as such when the matter was published in the newsletter and circulated among the members. 3. No good faith since it was his irresponsible act of letter writing to expose his alleged discovery of what he perceived to be an anomaly without the verification which ordinary prudence demands.

Soriano vs. IAC Facts: Chairman of the COA Francis Tantuico filed a libel suit against Soriano for imputing that he tampered election returns in the 84 elections. Soriano (editor) and 6 others were employees of THE GUARDIAN (newspaper) which published an article alleging such. Issue: Whether or not publication of the same libelous document may constitute separate and distinct offenses. Held: 1. Multiple publication rule each and every publication of the same libel constitutes a distinct offense 2. The editor/business manager of a daily newspaper or magazine shall be responsible for the defamation contained therein to the same extent as if he were the author himself. 3. As the respondent held office in QC and that the offending newspaper is published in QC, the case should be filed in a QC court.

Bulletin Publishing Corp. vs. Noel Facts: 21 alleged relatives of the late Amir Mindalano (in behalf of him and their clan) filed a complaint (LIBEL) against petitioner for the article by Jamil Flores which appeared in an issue of the Philippine Panorama. Private respondents' action was anchored on a feature article written by Jamil Maidan Flores entitled "A Changing of the Guard," which appeared in the 22 June 1986 issue ofPhilippine Panorama, a publication of petitioner Bulletin Publishing Corporation. In particular, exception was taken to the following excerpt: The division of Lanao into Sur and Norte in 1959 only emphasized the feudal nature of Maranaw politics. Talk of Lanao politics and you find yourself confined to a small circle of the Alonto, Dimaporo, Dimakuta, Dianalan, Lucman families and a few more. These are big, royal families. If you are a Maranaw with aspirations for political leadership, you better be a certified bona fide member of one or several of these clans.

Issue: Whether or not the featured article is libelous. Held: The identification of Amir Mindalano is thus merely illustrative or incidental to the course of the development of the theme of the article. Language of the article appeals simply declaratory or expository in character, matter-of-fact and unemotional in tone and tenor. No derogatory or derisive implications. We note that the subject matter of the article "A Changing of the Guard" is clearly one of legitimate public interest. As pointed out earlier, petitioners in the exercise of freedom of speech and of the press have kept well within the generally accepted moral and civil standards of the community as to what may be characterized as defamatory. The complaint in the court below failed to state a cause of action and should have been dismissed by respondent Judge. MVRS Publications vs Islamic Da Wah Council

FACTS: Islamic DaWah Council of the Philippines, Inc., a local federation of more than 70 Muslim religious organizations, filed a complaint for damages against MVRS Publications, Inc., arising from an article, which reads: "ALAM BA NINYO? Na ang mga baboy at kahit anong uri ng hayop sa Mindanao ay hindi kinakain ng mga Muslim? Para sa kanila ang mga ito ay isang sagradong bagay. Hindi nila ito kailangang kainin kahit na sila pa ay magutom at mawalan ng ulam sa tuwing sila ay kakain. Ginagawa nila itong Diyos at sinasamba pa nila ito sa tuwing araw ng kanilang pangingilin lalung-lalo na sa araw na tinatawag nilang 'Ramadan'." ISSUE: Whether or not this is an action for defamation (libel) or an emotional distress tort action HELD: The Supreme Court held that there is no cause of action for defamation. DEFAMATION DEFINED: Defamation, which includes libel and slander, means the offense of injuring a person's character, fame or reputation through false and malicious statements. It is that which tends to injure reputation or to diminish the esteem, respect, good will or confidence in the plaintiff or to excite derogatory feelings or opinions about the plaintiff. It is the publication of anything which is injurious to the good name or reputation of another or tends to bring him into disrepute. Defamation is an invasion of a relational interest since it involves the opinion which others in the community may have, or tend to have, of the plaintiff. GROUP LIBEL/DEFAMATION: where the defamation is alleged to have been directed at a group or class, it is essential that the statement must be so sweeping or all-embracing as to apply to every individual in that group or class, or sufficiently specific so that each individual in the class or group can prove that the defamatory statement specifically pointed to him, so that he can bring the action separately, if need be. The statements published by petitioners in the instant case did not specifically identify nor refer to any particular individuals who were purportedly the subject of the alleged libelous publication. Respondents can scarcely claim to having been singled out for social censure pointedly resulting in damages.

The action likewise is not for emotional distress. EMOTIONAL DISTRESS v. DEFAMATION: Primarily, an "emotional distress" tort action is personal in nature, i.e., it is a civil action filed by an individual to assuage the injuries to his emotional tranquility due to personal attacks on his character. It has no application in the instant case since no particular individual was identified in the disputed article of Bulgar. Also, the purported damage caused by the article, assuming there was any, falls under the principle of relational harm which includes harm to social relationships in the community in the form of defamation; as distinguished from the principle of reactive harm which includes injuries to individual emotional tranquility in the form of an infliction of emotional distress. In their complaint, respondents clearly asserted an alleged harm to the standing of Muslims in the community, especially to their activities in propagating their faith in Metro Manila and in other non-Muslim communities in the country. It is thus beyond cavil that the present case falls within the application of the relational harm principle of tort actions for defamation, rather than the reactive harm principle on which the concept of emotional distress properly belongs. Santos vs. CA 203 SCRA Facts: Santos, as a columnist of then Manila Daily Bulletin wrote in his weekly column a quoted statement from an unverified complaint filed w/ the SEC (by Rosario Sandejas charging CMS Stock Brokerage Inc. particularly priv resp). He was then charged of libel as well as other employees of the newspaper. Issue: Whether or not a quoted statement from a complaint when published is libelous. Held: 1. Malice is presumed in every defamatory imputation but does not arise if the communication is privileged under Art. 354. 2. The published article is privileged, being a fair and true report of a judicial proceeding, without comments or remarks, and therefore not punishable since it was a faithful reproduction of a pleading filed before a quasi-judicial body.

Sazon vs. CA Facts: Petitioner Fernando Sazon and private complainant Abdon Reyes were both residents of the PML Homes in East Drive, Parang Marikina, Metro Manila. They were likewise members of the PML-Parang Bagong Lipunan Community Association, Inc. (PML-BLCA), an association of homeowners of PML Homes. The association had a monthly newsletter, the PML-Homemaker, of which the petitioner was the editor. On December 11, 1983, the PML-BLCA held an election for the members of its board of directors. Among those who ran in the election were the private complainant and the petitioner. The petitioner was elected as a director. He was likewise elected by the new board as president of the homeowners' association. The private complainant lost in said election. Unable to accept defeat, the private complainant, on January 16, 1984, wrote a letter to the Estate Management Office of the Home Financing Corporation (EMO-HFC) protesting the election of the petitioner as a director and president of the homeowners' association. He alleged that the election was a nullity because of: (1) the lack of authority of the petitioner to call for such an election; (2) the absence of a quorum; and (3) lack of the required notice to the homeowners. On January 18, 1984, the private complainant wrote his co-homeowners explaining to them his election protest and urging them not to recognize the petitioner and the other members who won in the election. Meanwhile, in response to the election protest, the EMO-HFC ordered-the PML-BLCA to conduct a referendum to be supervised by the EMO-HFC. The private complainant then notified his co-homeowners about this development and requested them to attend a general meeting with the representatives of the EMO-HFC which was to be held before the referendum. Soon after the general meeting, several copies of a leaflet called the "PML Scoop" were received by the homeowners. The leaflet was entitled "Supalpal si Sazon,"' obviously referring to the affirmative action taken by the EMOHFC in connection with the private respondent's election protest. At about the same time, the phrase "Sazon, nasaan ang

pondo ng simbahan?" was seen boldly written on the walls near the entrance gate of the subdivision. There was no proof, however, as to who was responsible for these writings. Aggrieved by the aforequoted article, the private complainant initiated the necessary complaint against the petitioner, and on May 25, 1984, an Information was filed before the trial court charging the petitioner with libel. Issue: Whether or not the words in controversy are not defamatory of private comlaint as they are not actionable epthets written without malice. Held: Even assuming, ex gratia argumenti, that petitioner's article qualifies under the category of privileged communication, this does not still negative the presence of malice in the instant case. It is well to note that the existence of malice in fact may be shown by extrinsic evidence that the defendant bore a grudge against the offended party, or that there was rivalry or illfeeling between them which existed at the date of the publication of the defamatory imputation or that the defendant had an intention to injure the reputation of the offended party as shown by the words used and the circumstances attending the publication of the defamatory imputation. 13 The circumstances under which the subject article was published by the petitioner serve to buttress the inference that petitioner was animated solely by revenge towards the private complainant on account of the leaflet entitled "Supalpal si Sazon," earlier circulated among the homeowners as well as the writings near the entrance gate of the subdivision, all of which petitioner believes to be the handiwork of the private complainant. Furthermore, the words used in the questioned article were mostly uncalled for, strongly sending the message that petitioner's objective was merely to malign and injure the reputation of the private complainant. This is certainly indicative of malice in fact on the part of the petitioner. Vasquez vs. CA Facts: Vasquez is a resident of the Tondo Foreshore Area. After going to the National House Authority to follow up on their complaint against their Barangay captain (herein complainant OLDMEDO), he was interviewed by newspaper reporters. In the article released by Ang Tinig ng Masa, he stated that Olmedo was corrupt and the source of their problems regarding the land disputes. Hence, Olmedo filed a complaint for libel. Issue: Whether or not the statements made are libelous. 1. Vasquez cannot claim to have been the source of only a few statements in the article and point to the other parties as the source of the rest since he admitted that he was correctly identified as the spokesperson of the families during the interview. 2. Under Art. 361, if the defamatory statement is made against a public official with respect to the discharge of his official duties and functions and truth of the allegation is shown, the accused will be entitled to an acquittal even though he does not prove that the imputation was published with good motives and for justifiable ends. In the case at bar, he did prove that what he said was INDEED true. Even if the defamatory statement is FALSE, no liability can attach if it relates to official conduct, unless the public official concerned proves that the statement was made with actual malice.

GMA Network Inc. vs. Bustos Facts: Examinees who failed the August 1987 physicians licensureexaminations filed a mandamus in the RTC of Manila against the Board of Medicine of the Professional Regulation Commission (herein respondents). The examinees alleged that the Board committed manifest errors in the checking of answers. Petitioners (GMA and Vidal) secured a copy of the petition, made a report, and aired it in their Headline News. Respondents filed a libel suit against the petitioners. The RTC ruled in favor of GMA and Bustos. On appeal, the CA reversed the prior ruling. The CA held GMA and Bustos liable and ordered them to pay damages. Hence, this case.

Issues: (1) Whether or not the televised news report in question is libelous? (2) Whether or not the insertion of old film footage constitutes malice to warrant award of damages? Held: (1) No, the report was not libelous. Liability for libel attaches when the following elements are present: (a) an allegation or imputation of a discreditable act or condition concerning another (b) publication of the imputation (c) identity of the person defamed (d) existence of malice. Malice is a term use to indicate the fact that the offender is prompted by personal ill will or spite and speaks not in response to duty, but merely to injure he reputation of the person defamed. In this case the report aired by petitioners was basically a narration of the contents of the petition for mandamus. (Side topic: petitionersreport is also covered by qualified privilege communication, although not specified in Article 354 of Revised Penal Code). (2) No, petitioner is not liable for damages. Moral damages may be recovered only if the existence of the factual and legal bases for the claim and causal connection to the acts complained of are satisfactorily proven. Sadly, the required quantum of proof is miserably wanting in this caseNot being entitled to moral damages, neither may the respondents lay claim for exemplary damages. CHAVEZ vs. Court of Appeals FACTS: An Information for Libel was filed before the RTC of Manila against private respondents Baskinas and Manapat, with petitioner Francisco Chavez as the complainant. Private respondents moved to quash the Information and the warrants of arrest which was denied by the RTC. Private respondents then filed a Petition for Certiorari with the CA, which was granted holding that the fact that the Information against private respondents states that the libelous matter was "caused to be published in Smart File, a magazine of general circulation in Manila." CA held that the Information failed to allege where the written defamation was "printed and first published," an allegation sine qua non "if the circumstances as to where the libel was printed and first published is used as the basis of the venue of the publication." The Information, it was noted, did not indicate that the libelous articles were printed or first published in Manila, or that petitioner resided in Manila at the time of the publication of the articles. The CA further observed that even during the preliminary investigation, private respondents had already interposed that Smart File was actually printed and first published in the City of Makati, and that the address of the publisher Animal Farms Publication as indicated in the editorial page of the publication itself was a post office box with the Makati Central Post Office. ISSUE: Whether or not the subject information sufficiently vest jurisdiction in the Manila trial courts to hear the libel charge, in consonance with Article 360 of the Revised Penal Code? HELD: NO. The rules on venue in article 360 may be restated thus: 1. Whether the offended party is a public official or a private person, the criminal action may be filed in the Court of First Instance of the province or city where the libelous article is printed and first published. 2. If the offended party is a private individual, the criminal action may also be filed in the Court of First Instance of the province where he actually resided at the time of the commission of the offense. 3. If the offended party is a public officer whose office is in Manila at the time of the commission of the offense, the action may be filed in the Court of First Instance of Manila. 4. If the offended party is a public officer holding office outside of Manila, the action may be filed in the Court of First Instance of the province or city where he held office at the time of the commission of the offense. The Information states that the libelous articles were published in Smart File, and not that they were published in Manila. The place "Manila" is in turn employed to situate where Smart File was in general circulation, and not where the libel was published or first printed. The fact that Smart File was in general circulation in Manila does not necessarily establish that it

was published and first printed in Manila, in the same way that while leading national dailies such as the Philippine Daily Inquirer or the Philippine Star are in general circulation in Cebu, it does not mean that these newspapers are published and first printed in Cebu. Petitioner does submit that there is no need to employ the clause "printed and first published" in indicating where the crime of libel was committed, as the term "publish" is "generic and within the general context of the term 'print' in so far as the latter term is utilized to refer to the physical act of producing the publication." Where the law does not distinguish, we should not distinguish. Indeed, if we hold that the Information at hand sufficiently vests jurisdiction in Manila courts since the publication is in general circulation in Manila, there would be no impediment to the filing of the libel action in other locations where Smart File is in general circulation. If this disquisition impresses an unduly formalistic reading of the Information at hand, it should be reiterated that the flaws in the Information strike at the very heart of the jurisdiction of the Manila RTC. It is settled that jurisdiction of a court over a criminal case is determined by the allegations of the complaint or information, and the offense must have been committed or any one of its essential ingredients took place within the territorial jurisdiction of the court. Article 360 states, in as unequivocal a manner as possible, that the criminal and civil action for libel shall be filed with the court of the province or city "where the libelous article is printed and first published, or where any of the offended parties actually resides at the time of the commission of the offense." If the Information for libel does not establish with particularity any of these two venue requirements, the trial court would have no jurisdiction to hear the criminal case. Reyes v. People Facts: Reyes was a civilian employee in the Naval Base in Sangley Point in Cavite. He was, however, terminated in May1961.A month later, he led a demonstration of 20 to 30 people in front of the base. They carried placards containingmalicious and derogatory statements against Agustin Hallare. Col. Monzon, who was assigned in maintaining harmony inthe base & the surrounding community, met them. He learned that the demo was directed to Hallare & not to the base.Hallare saw the demo and feared for his security. He asked Monzon to escort him to his residence to whichMonzon agreed. They rode Monzons car. As they passed by the demo, Monzon slowed down and told Hallare to readthe placards. Upon seeing Hallare, the demonstrators rode their jeepneys and trailed Hallare up to his residence wherethey continued the demo. It was then that Reyes shouted Putang ina mo & Papatayin kita.The case was filed in the MTC but the prosecution moved to amend the complaint on the day of the hearing.They had the word orally removed from the complaint for grave threats. Reyes objected but it was, nonetheless,allowed. Issues: (1) Whether or not guilty of grave threats, (2) Whether or not guilty of oral defamation Held: Acquitted from oral defamation.(1)Yes.The elements for grave threat are (a) the offender threaten another of inflicting a wrong upon his person, (b) thewrong amounted to a crime, and (c) the threat is NOT conditional.Evidence presented by the prosecution successfully proves these elements. The manner by which the threats weremade is not an element of the crime. Hence, the deletion of the word orally from the complaint is not substantial and will not prejudice Reyess rights nor is there a need for a second plea.Petitioners contention that the crime should be LIGHT threats only is contradicted by the evidence. They staged ademo in the base with placards bearing derogatory statements, they persistently trailed Hallare up to his residence, andthey continued the demo in front of his house clearly, the threats were made with intention to make Hallare believethat the threats will be carried out. They are not merely due to a temporary fit of anger considering that the terminationhappened a month earlier.(2) No.This is a usual expression intended to express anger and passion & not intended for slander. It should be viewed aspart of the crime of grave threats.In a previous decision of the court (Yebra, GR. No. 14348, 1960), it said that the libelous remarks therein were morethreatening than libelous. They were used merely to express passion which culminated into the principal objective of threatening the victim for which the writer should not be separately prosecuted for the crime of libel.

Victorio vs. CA Facts: Atty. Vivencio Ruiz, a practising lawyer since 1926, one time Justice of the Peace and member of the Provincial Board of Nueva Ecija, a professor of law and for sometime president of the Nueva Ecija Bar Association, has been the attorney of petitioner Exequiel Victorio in certain civil cases from 1953 until 1963 when petitioner decided to hire the services of another lawyer, Atty. L. Castillo in place of Atty. Ruiz and his collaborator Judge Alfredo Guiang, then Municipal Judge of Guimba, Nueva Ecija. Exequiel Victorio and his wife afterwards filed an administrative charge against Judge Guiang which was assigned to Judge Ramon Avancena, Presiding Judge of the Court of First Instance of Nueva Ecija, for investigation and disbarment proceedings against Atty. Ruiz, then pending in the Office of the Solicitor General. Petitioner Daniel Victorio is the son of Exequiel Victoria. During the hearing of the administrative case on that particular afternoon of January 9, 1964 in the sala of Judge Avancea, Atty. Castillo, counsel of the Victorios, presented an urgent motion to disqualify Judge Avancea to hear the administrative case, who apparently taken aback, called down Atty. Castillo and gave him a lecture, while Atty. Ruiz, as counsel for respondent Judge Guiang in the administrative case, moved that Atty. Castillo be cited for contempt of court. After the said hearing and while the two accused were later walking down the corridor leading to the stairs from the sala of Judge Avancea, the incident that gave rise to the criminal prosecution for oral defamation took place. Petitioners were overheard by Emiliano Manuzon, a policeman of Cabanatuan City and one of the witnesses for the prosecution, to have uttered the following defamatory words: Daniel: "Kayabang ng putang-inang abogadong Ruiz na iyan, tunaw naman ang utak, suwapang at estapador." Exequiel: "Lastog ta ukinnanata abogado Ruiz, suwapang, estapador, paltogak ta ukinana ta abogado Ruiz, suwapang ken estapador." (Translated in Tagalog as, Mayabang yang putang-inang abogado Ruiz na iyan, babarilin ko ang putang inang iyan, suwapang at estapador.") Issue: Whether or not utterances of defamatory words during the height of anger may mitigate the degree of the offense. Held: In the instant case, appellant-petitioner imputed the crime of estafa against a prominent lawyer one-time Justice of the Peace and member of the Provincial Board of Nueva Ecija, a professor of law and for sometime a president of the Nueva Ecija Bar Association. As the scurrilous imputation strikes deep into the character of the victim, no special circumstance need be shown for the defamatory words uttered to be considered grave oral defamationBalite v. People, supra. In addition, the fact that the offended party is a lawyer, the totality of such words as "kayabang", "tunaw ang utak", "swapang at estapador", imputed against him has the import of charging him with dishonesty or improper practice in the performance of his duties, hence, actionable per se. Petitioner argues that this Court in People v. Doronila (40 O.G. No. 15, Supp. 11, p. 231 [1941]) and People v. Modesto (40 O.G. No. 15, Supp. 11, p. 128 [1941]) ruled that defamatory words uttered in the heat of anger could only give rise to slight oral defamation (Rono, p. 13). We disagree. An examination of the rulings relied upon by petitioner showed that said cases were decided not by this Court but by the respondent court. Suffice it to say that said decisions do not bind this Court. Nevertheless, the cases adverted to by petitioner would not in any manner help his cause. As pointed out by the Solicitor General, there was no reason for the petitioner to be angry at the offended party who was merely performing his duties as a lawyer in defense of his client. Petitioner's anger was not lawfully caused. (Brief for the Appellee, p. 7). The fact that the defamatory words were uttered by the petitioner without provocation by private respondent and taken seriously by the latter, renders inapplicable the cases relied upon by petitioner. As a matter of fact, the scurrilous remarks were found by the respondent court to have been uttered in a loud voice, in the presence of at least ten (10) persons, taken seriously by the offended party and without provocation on his part.

People vs. Judge Orcullo Facts: The accused Venida Peralta uttered the following slanderous words against Lydia Flores: A hostess and has a paramour, any kind of penis has penetrated your vagina. within the hearing distance of several people. The accused filed a motion to quash on the grounds that the crime alleged cannot be prosecuted de oficio because the crime being imputed by the accused is that of adultery against Lydia is therefore a private crime and must be brought by a complaint filed by the complainant (according to par. 5, Art. 360 RPC). Respondent judge quashes the charge on such grounds Issue:Whether or not the slanderous words can be prosecuted de officio. Held: 1. The Sol-Gens comment is correct that the crime being imputed is not adultery but prostitution because of the usage of hostess which has taken a notiorius connotation and since the charge does not allege that the victim is married and should thus be presumed single. 2. In people vs. Hong Din Chu, an imputation that a married woman is a prostitute not only proclaims her as an adulterer, which is a private offense, but also as one who has committed a crime against public moral, prostitution and can therefore be prosecuted de oficio. 3. It must be noted that only when the derogatory remarks clearly and categorically reflect the elements of adultery would the complaint for libel/slander by the offended party be necessary to commence prosecution.

Villanueva vs People Facts: On 12 September 1994, at 10:00 oclock in the morning, two utility men came to complainants office, bringing with them the application for monetized leave ofSangguniang Bayan member Noel Villanueva, petitioner in this case. The application for monetized leave was not immediately attended to by complainant as she was then busy dictating some important matters to her secretary. The accused at that time was standing in front of the Vice Mayors Office and he allegedly said: E ano kung wala sa mood, e ano kung galit sya. These utterances of accused were disregarded by complainant but accused then entered the complainants office bringing with him his Application for Monetized Leave. The accused addressed the complainants secretary: Malou, pag atiu ne keng mood, papirma mu ne. The alleged request of accused to the Secretary was made in a very sarcastic manner. Complainant got the monetized leave and filed it in her in and out files and while doing this, the paper accidentally fell on the floor. When she was about to pick it up, the accused allegedly got a yellow pad and swung it at complainants face, but she was able to evade it. Accused then said: Ibuat daka ken, inabu daka keng awang, e baling masukulnaku. (I will lift you from there and I will throw you out of the window and I dont care if I will go to jail). Then the accused went out of the office and before leaving, he pointed a dirty finger at complainant, prompting the latter to stand and get an empty bottle of coke to shield her face. Accused proceeded towards the office of the municipal mayor. Because accused was still frothing invectives, complainant purportedly rolled the empty bottle of coke towards him. The incident was witnessed by so many people numbering about 20 to 30 who were then at the municipal hall. Prosecution evidence further showed that accused allegedly mouthed the following disparaging remarks, Magmalinis ka, ena ka man malinis, garapal ka. Balamumansanas kang malutu, pero king kilub ularan ka, tiktak karinat (You are pretending to be clean and honest yet you are not clean and honest, you are corrupt. You are like red apple, you are worm infested inside and extremely dirty). While this was going on, the Municipal Attorney, Atty. Pepito Torres, intervened to pacify the accused, but he was unable to do so. Based on the account of the prosecution witnesses, from the municipal session hall, the complainant was persuaded to enter the office of the Sangguniang Bayan Secretary. Accused followed her and inside said office, the accused again said, Ibuat daka, inabu daka keng awang, e baling masukul ku (I will lift you from there and I will throw you out of the window and I dont care if I will go to ail). I Tata mu tinagal yang kapitan pero masambut ya, pero ing kaputul ku sinambut ne man (Your father ran for barangay captain and lost but my brother won)[10] and again, the accused pointed a dirty finger at complainant.

Issue: (1) Whether or notuttering defamatory words in the heat of anger, with some provocation on the part of the offended party constitutes only a light felony. (2)Whether or not pointing a dirty finger constitutes the crime of slander by deed. Held: Slander is libel committed by oral (spoken) means, instead of in writing. The term oral defamation or slander as now understood, has been defined as the speaking of base and defamatory words which tend to prejudice another in his reputation, office, trade, business or means of livelihood. There is grave slander when it is of a serious and insulting nature. The gravity of the oral defamation depends not only (1) upon the expressions used, but also (2) on the personal relations of the accused and the offended party, and (3) the circumstances surrounding the case. Indeed, it is a doctrine of ancient respectability that defamatory words will fall under one or the other, depending not only upon their sense, grammatical significance, and accepted ordinary meaning judging them separately, but also upon the special circumstances of the case, antecedents or relationship between the offended party and the offender, which might tend to prove the intention of the offender at the time. In our previous rulings, we held that the social standing and position of the offended party are also taken into account and thus, it was held that the slander was grave, because the offended party had held previously the Office of Congressman, Governor, and Senator and was then a candidate for Vice-President, for which no amount of sophistry would take the statement out of the compass of grave oral defamation. However, we have, likewise, ruled in the past that uttering defamatory words in the heat of anger, with some provocation on the part of the offended party constitutes only a light felony. In the case at bar, as a public official, petitioner, who was holding the position of Councilor at that time, is hidebound to be an exemplar to society against the use of intemperate language particularly because the offended party was a ViceMayor. However, we cannot keep a blind eye to the fact that such scathing words were uttered by him in the heat of anger triggered by the fact, as found by the Court of Appeals, that complainant refused, without valid justification to approve the monetization of accrued leave credits of petitioner . In a manner of speaking, she sowed the wind that reaped the storm. Guided by the foregoing precedents, we find petitioner guilty only of slight oral defamation because of the attendant circumstances in the case at bar. Lest we be misconstrued, the Court does not condone the vilification or use of scurrilous language on the part of petitioner, but following the rule that all possible circumstances favorable to the accused must be taken in his favor, it is our considered view that the slander committed by petitioner can be characterized as slight slander following the doctrine that uttering defamatory words in the heat of anger, with some provocation on the part of the offended party, constitutes only a light felony. In fact, to be denied approval of monetization of leave without valid justification, but as an offshoot of a political dissension may have been vexing for petitioner and may have been perceived by him as provocation that triggered him to blow his top and utter those disparaging words. In hindsight, to be denied monetization of leave credits must have stirred upon the petitioner a feeling akin to begging for money that he was legally entitled to. This oppressive conduct on the part of complainant must have scarred petitioners self-esteem, too, to appear as begging for money. But again, this is not an excuse to resort to intemperate language no matter how such embarrassment must have wreaked havoc on his ego. The next issue that faces this Court is whether or not petitioners act of poking a dirty finger at complainant constitutes grave slander by deed. Following the same principle as enunciated in our foregoing discussion of the first issue, we find petitioner guilty only of slight slander by deed in Criminal Case No. 140-94 inasmuch as we find complainants unjust refusal to sign petitioners application for monetization and her act of throwing a coke bottle at him constituted a perceived provocation that triggered the poking of finger incident. Article 359 of the Revised Penal Code provides: Art. 359. Slander by deed. The penalty of arresto mayor in its maximum period to prision correccional in its minimum period or a fine ranging from 200 to 1,000 pesos shall be imposed upon any person who shall perform any act not included and punished in this title, which shall cast dishonor, discredit, or contempt upon another person. If said act is not of a serious nature, the penalty shall be arresto menor or a fine not exceeding 200 pesos. Slander by deed is a crime against honor, which is committed by performing any act, which casts dishonor, discredit, or contempt upon another person. The elements are (1) that the offender performs any act not included in any other crime against honor, (2) that such act is performed in the presence of other person or persons, and (3) that such act casts dishonor, discredit or contempt upon the offended party. Whether a certain slanderous act constitutes slander by deed of a serious

nature or not, depends on the social standing of the offended party, the circumstances under which the act was committed, the occasion, etc.[32] It is libel committed by actions rather than words. The most common examples are slapping someone or spitting on his/her face in front of the public market, in full view of a crowd, thus casting dishonor, discredit, and contempt upon the person of another. Moreover, pointing a dirty finger ordinarily connotes the phrase Fuck You, which is similar to the expression Puta or Putang Ina mo, in local parlance. Such expression was not held to be libelous in Reyes v. People,[38] where the Court said that: This is a common enough expression in the dialect that is often employed, not really to slander but rather to express anger or displeasure. It is seldom, if ever, taken in its literal sense by the hearer, that is, as a reflection on the virtues of a mother. Following Reyes, and in light of the fact that there was a perceived provocation coming from complainant, petitioners act of pointing a dirty finger at complainant constitutes simple slander by deed, it appearing from the factual milieu of the case that the act complained of was employed by petitioner "to express anger or displeasure" at complainant for procrastinating the approval of his leave monetization. While it may have cast dishonor, discredit or contempt upon complainant, said act is not of a serious nature, thus, the penalty shall bearresto menor meaning, imprisonment from one day to 30 days or a fine not exceeding P200.00

People vs. Motita Facts: Accused was seen in the public market holding a mirror between the legs of the complainant Mrs. Pilar N. Letada and thus allowing people to see a reflection of her private part. Sol-Gen agrees that what was committed was slander by deed but disagrees on the gravity of the deed and says that it is not serious Issue: Whether or not the crime committed is slander by deed. Held: 1. The crime committed could be unjust vexation or slander by deed. However, though irritation or annoyance exists in both crimes, slander by deed is committed when such annoyance is attended with publicity, dishonor or contempt. If the annoyance was attended by those circumstances mentioned in rape, the crime would be acts of lasciviousness. The facts of the case show that the act committed was slander by deed. 2. We disagree with the Sol-Gen regarding his comment on the gravity of the slander by deed. In considering the seriousness of the act, we are moved by considerations of public policy and morals, namely, the degeneration of the respect accorded to Filipinas.

People vs. Alagao Facts: The said accused, being members of the Manila Polic Department, were charged with the complex crime of incriminatory machinations through unlawful arrest. The allegedly unlawfully arrested complainant, Marcial Apolonio y Santos, and planted on his person a marked P1.00 bill in order to impute to him the crime of bribery. The accused filed a motion to quash said information on the grounds that said crime does not exist. Issue: Whether or not the crime being charged against the accused can be complexed. Held: 1. A perusal of the charge shows that it is a complex crime in the sense that the unlawful arrest was used as a means to commit the crime of incriminatory machinations. The accused had to detain the complainant through the unlawful arrest first before they proceeded with the planting. 2. Sol-Gen points out that the unlawful arrest was a necessary act in order for the planting of the evidence to have been committed. The trial courts finding that the planting happened long after the unlawful arrest was not proven by evidence and even assuming that it was, it still doesnt disprove the necessity of the unlawful arrest in committing the evidence planting

Ganaan vs IAC Facts: Complainant Atty. Pintor called up Lenoanrdo Laconico to discuss the withdrawal of the charge of direct assault against latter. Laconico requested the appellant, Atty. Ganaan, to listen in on the conversation, by using the phone extension, between Pintor and Laconico wherein Pintor offered to drop the charges if Laconico paid him P8,000. Gaanan executed an affidavit attesting that he heard the complainant extort/ commit robbery against Laconico. Complainant then files a complaint against Ganaan for violating the Anti-wiretapping law. Issue: Whether or not a telephone extension is included in the enumeration of devices in RA 4200 Held: A telephone extension is not considered as subsumed under the phrase any other device or arrangement since a telephone extension is not deliberately installed for the purpose of overhearing, intercepting or recording spoken words. 1. Statutory construction will nor permit telephone extensions to be included in the enumeration of prohibited devices in the law 2. The records of the congressional hearings show that they were concerned more with penalizing the act of recording rather than just listening to phone conversations 3. The act of mere listening can only be prosecuted if committed strictly with the use of the enumerated devices or others of a similar nature 4. Crossed-lines phenomenon will prevent inadvertent listeners to report crimes for fear of being prosecuted under RA 4200 if we sustain such prosecution of the accused at hand Ramirez vs. CA Facts: A civil case for damages was filed by petitioner Socorro Ramirez in the RTC of Quezon City alleging that the private respondent, Ester Garcia, in a confrontation in the latters office, allegedly vexed, insulted and humiliated her in a hostile and furious mood and in a manner offensive to petitioners dignity and personality, contrary to morals, good customs and public policy. In support of her claim, petitioner produced a verbatim transcript of the event. The transcript on which the civil case was based was culled from a tape recording of the confrontation made by petitioner. As a result of petitioners recording of the event and alleging that the said act of secretly taping the confrontation was illegal, private respondent filed a criminal case before the RTC of Pasay City for violation of RA 4200, entitled An Act to Prohibit and Penalize Wiretapping and Other Related Violations of Private Communication, and Other Purposes. Upon arraignment, in lieu of a plea, petitioner filed a Motion to Quash the Information on the ground that the facts charged do not constitute an offense particularly a violation of RA 4200. The trial court granted the Motion to Quash, agreeing with petitioner. From the trial courts Order, the private respondent filed a Petition for Review on Certiorari with this Court, which forthwith referred the case to the CA. Respondent Court of Appeals promulgated its assailed Decision declaring the trial courts order null and void. Issue: Whether or not RA 4200 applies to taping of a private conversation by one of the parties to a conversation. Held: Legislative intent is determined principally from the language of a statute. Where the language of a statute is clear and unambiguous, the law is applied according to its express terms, and interpretation would be resorted to only where a literal interpretation would be either impossible or absurd or would lead to an injustice.

Section 1 of RA 4200 clearly and unequivocally makes it illegal for any person, not authorized by all parties to any private communication, to secretly record such communication by means of a tape recorder. The law makes no distinction as to whether the party sought to be penalized by the statute ought to be a party other than or different from those involved in the private communication. The statutes intent to penalize all persons unauthorized to make such recording is underscored by the use of qualifier any. Consequently, as respondent CA correctly concluded, even a (person) privy to a communication who records his private conversation with another without the knowledge of the latter (will) qualify as a violator under this provision of RA 4200. The unambiguity of the express words of the provision therefore plainly supports the view held by the respondent court that the provision seeks to penalize even those privy to the private communications. Where the law makes no distinctions, one does not distinguish.