Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 6

1.

People vs Echegaray, 267 SCRA 682 Facts: The SC rendered a decision in the instant case affirming the conviction of the accused-appellant for the crime of raping his ten-year old daughter. The crime having been committed sometime in April, 1994, during which time Republic Act (R.A.) No. 7659, commonly known as the Death Penalty Law, was already in effect, accused-appellant was inevitably meted out the supreme penalty of death. The accused-appellant timely filed a Motion for Reconsideration which focused on the sinister motive of the victim's grandmother that precipitated the filing of the alleged false accusation of rape against the accused. This was dismissed. On August 6, 1996, accused-appellant discharged the defense counsel, Atty. Julian R. Vitug, and retained the services of the Anti-Death Penalty Task Force of the Free Legal Assistance Group of the Philippines. A supplemental Motion for Reconsideration was prepared by the FLAG on behalf of accused-appellant. Issue: Whether or not Article III, Section 19 (1) absolutely abolished the death penalty. Held: One of the indispensable powers of the state is the power to secure society against threatened and actual evil. Pursuant to this, the legislative arm of government enacts criminal laws that define and punish illegal acts that may be committed by its own subjects, the executive agencies enforce these laws, and the judiciary tries and sentences the criminals in accordance with these laws. By this amendment, the death penalty was not completely abolished by the 1987 Constitution. Rather, it merely suspended the death penalty and gave Congress the discretion to review it at the propitious time. Article III, Section 19 (1) of the 1987 Constitution plainly vests in Congress the power to re-impose the death penalty "for compelling reasons involving heinous crimes". This power is not subsumed in the plenary legislative power of Congress, for it is subject to a clear showing of "compelling reasons involving heinous crimes." It is specifically against the foregoing capital crimes that the test of heinousness must be squarely applied. The elements of heinousness and compulsion are inseparable and are, in fact, interspersed with each other. Because the subject crimes are either so revolting and debasing as to violate the most minimum of the human standards of decency or its effects, repercussions, implications and consequences so destructive, destabilizing, debilitating, or aggravating in the context of our socio-political and economic agenda as a developing nation, these crimes must be frustrated, curtailed and altogether eradicated. R.A. No. 7659 states is that "the Congress, in the interest of justice, public order and rule of law, and the need to rationalize and harmonize the penal sanctions for heinous crimes, finds compelling reasons to impose the death penalty for said crimes." 2. Echagaray vs Secretary of Justice 301 SCRA 96 Facts: The SC affirmed the conviction of petitioner Leo Echegaray y Pilo for the crime of rape of the 10 year-old daughter of his common-law spouse and the imposition upon him of the death penalty for the said crime. He filed an MFR and a supplemental MFR raising for the first time the issue of the constitutionality of Republic Act No. 7659 and the death penalty for rape. The Court denied both motions. In the meantime, Congress had seen it fit to change the mode of execution of the death penalty from electrocution to lethal injection, and passed Republic Act No. 8177, AN ACT DESIGNATING DEATH BY LETHAL INJECTION AS THE METHOD OF CARRYING OUT CAPITAL PUNISHMENT, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE ARTICLE 81 OF THE REVISED PENAL CODE, AS AMENDED BY SECTION 24 OF REPUBLIC ACT NO. 7659. The convict filed a Petition for prohibition from carrying out the lethal injection against him under the grounds that it constituted cruel, degrading, or unusual punishment, being violative of due process, a violation of the Philippines' obligations under international covenants, an undue delegation of legislative power by Congress, an unlawful exercise by respondent Secretary of the power to legislate, and an unlawful delegation of delegated powers by the Secretary of Justice to respondent Director.

The Commission on Human Rights filed a Motion for Leave of Court to Intervene and/or Appear as Amicus Curiae with the attached Petition to Intervene and/or Appear as Amicus Curiae. Concisely put, petitioner argues that R.A. No. 8177 and its implementing rules do not pass constitutional muster for: (a) violation of the constitutional proscription against cruel, degrading or inhuman punishment, (b) violation of our international treaty obligations, (c) being an undue delegation of legislative power, and (d) being discriminatory. Issue: 1. Is it a violation of the constitutional proscription against cruel, degrading or inhuman punishment? No 2. Is it discriminatory and contrary to law? Yes Held: 1. Petitioner contends that death by lethal injection constitutes cruel, degrading and inhuman punishment considering that (1) R.A. No. 8177 fails to provide for the drugs to be used in carrying out lethal injection, the dosage for each drug to be administered, and the procedure in administering said drug/s into the accused; (2) R.A. No. 8177 and its implementing rules are uncertain as to the date of the execution, time of notification, the court which will fix the date of execution, which uncertainties cause the greatest pain and suffering for the convict; and (3) the possibility of "botched executions" or mistakes in administering the drugs renders lethal injection inherently cruel. Now it is well-settled in jurisprudence that the death penalty per se is not a cruel, degrading or inhuman punishment. Harden v. Director of Prisons- "punishments are cruel when they involve torture or a lingering death; but the punishment of death is not cruel, within the meaning of that word as used in the constitution. It implies there something inhuman and barbarous, something more than the mere extinguishment of life." Would the lack in particularity then as to the details involved in the execution by lethal injection render said law "cruel, degrading or inhuman"? The implementing details of R.A. No. 8177 are matters which are properly left to the competence and expertise of administrative officials. Petitioner contends that Sec. 16 of R.A. No. 8177 is uncertain as to which "court" will fix the time and date of execution, and the date of execution and time of notification of the death convict. As petitioner already knows, the "court" which designates the date of execution is the trial court which convicted the accused. The procedure is that the "judgment is entered fifteen (15) days after its promulgation, and 10 days thereafter, the records are remanded to the court below including a certified copy of the judgment for execution. Neither is there any uncertainty as to the date of execution nor the time of notification. As to the date of execution, Section 15 of the implementing rules must be read in conjunction with the last sentence of Section 1 of R.A. No. 8177 which provides that the death sentence shall be carried out "not earlier than one (1) year nor later then eighteen (18) months from the time the judgment imposing the death penalty became final and executory, without prejudice to the exercise by the President of his executive clemency powers at all times." Hence, the death convict is in effect assured of eighteen (18) months from the time the judgment imposing the death penalty became final and executor wherein he can seek executive clemency and attend to all his temporal and spiritual affairs. Petitioner further contends that the infliction of "wanton pain" in case of possible complications in the intravenous injection that respondent Director is an untrained and untested person insofar as the choice and administration of lethal injection is concerned, renders lethal injection a cruel, degrading and inhuman punishment. This is unsubstantiated. First. Petitioner has neither alleged nor presented evidence that lethal injection required the expertise only of phlebotomists and not trained personnel and that the drugs to be administered are unsafe or ineffective. Petitioner simply cites situations in the United States wherein execution by lethal injection allegedly resulted in prolonged and agonizing death for the convict, without any other evidence whatsoever. Second. Petitioner overlooked Section 1, third paragraph of R.A. No. 8177 which requires that all personnel involved in the execution proceedings should be trained prior to the performance of such task. We must presume that the public officials entrusted with the implementation of the death penalty will carefully avoid inflicting cruel punishment. Third. Any infliction of pain in lethal injection is merely incidental in carrying out the execution of death penalty and does not fall within the constitutional proscription against cruel, degrading and inhuman punishment. "In a limited sense, anything is cruel which is calculated to give pain or distress, and since punishment imports pain or suffering to the convict, it may be said that all punishments are cruel. But of course the Constitution does not mean that crime, for this

reason, is to go unpunished." The cruelty against which the Constitution protects a convicted man is cruelty inherent in the method of punishment, not the necessary suffering involved in any method employed to extinguish life humanely. What is cruel and unusual "is not fastened to the obsolete but may acquire meaning as public opinion becomes enlightened by a humane justice" and "must draw its meaning from the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society." 2. Petitioner contends that Section 17 of the Implementing Rules is unconstitutional for being discriminatory as well as for being an invalid exercise of the power to legislate by respondent Secretary. Petitioner insists that Section 17 amends the instances when lethal injection may be suspended, without an express amendment of Article 83 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by section 25 of R.A. No. 7659. "SEC. 17. SUSPENSION OF THE EXECUTION OF THE DEATH SENTENCE. Execution by lethal injection shall not be inflicted upon a woman within the three years next following the date of the sentence or while she is pregnant, nor upon any person over seventy (70) years of age. In this latter case, the death penalty shall be commuted to the penalty of reclusion perpetua with the accessory penalties provided in Article 40 of the Revised Penal Code." Petitioner contends that Section 17 is unconstitutional for being discriminatory as well as for being an invalid exercise of the power to legislate by respondent Secretary. Petitioner insists that Section 17 amends the instances when lethal injection may be suspended, without an express amendment of Article 83 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by section 25 of R.A. No. 7659, stating that the death sentence shall not be inflicted upon a woman while she is pregnant or within one (1) year after delivery, nor upon any person over seventy years of age. While Article 83 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by Section 25 of Republic Act No. 7659, suspends the implementation of the death penalty while a woman is pregnant or within one (1) year after delivery, Section 17 of the implementing rules omits the one (1) year period following delivery as an instance when the death sentence is suspended, and adds a ground for suspension of sentence no longer found under Article 83 of the Revised Penal Code as amended, which is the three-year reprieve after a woman is sentenced. This addition is, in petitioner's view, tantamount to a gender-based discrimination sans statutory basis, while the omission is an impermissible contravention of the applicable law. Being merely an implementing rule, Section 17 aforecited must not override, but instead remain consistent and in harmony with the law it seeks to apply and implement. 3. People vs. Galigao, January 14, 2003 Facts: Sometime on February 1996 at Sitio Paho, Barangay Canubing 1, Municipality of Calapan, Province of Oriental Mindoro, Bobby raped Dorivie who was then 8 years old and allegedly raped Deborrah on March 17, 1996; and Daisy allegedly raped on March 19, 1996, all his daughters. Apparently he raped his daughters for revenge against his wife who left him with her paramour. On October 13, 1999, the court found accused guilty beyond reasonable doubt of Rape on three counts with the qualifying circumstance that in all these cases, the victims were all under 18 years of age, and that the offender is the parent of the victims, accused to suffer THREE (3) DEATH PENALTIES together with all the accessory penalties imposed by law and to indemnify the victims. Issue: Is the Court correct in sentencing the Bobby with death penalty each for the 3 rapes when in fact rape as a heinous crime was not yet punishable by death when the same were committed by him? Held: Nevertheless, while accused-appellants guilt was proved beyond reasonable doubt, we find the imposition of the three death penalties against him excessive and unwarranted. In imposing upon accused-appellant the supreme penalty of death, the trial court erroneously cited Article 266-A (formerly Article 335), as well as Article 266-B, (1), of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by Republic Act No. 8353. Considering that the crimes were committed prior to the effectivity of R.A. No. 8353 on October 22, 1997, the

provisions of R.A. No. 7659, which was the law in effect at the time the rapes were committed should have been applied. The pertinent provisions of Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by Section 11 of R.A. No. 7659, read as follows: ART. 335. When and how rape is committed. Rape is committed by having carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the following circumstances: The death penalty shall also be imposed if the crime is committed with any of the following attendant circumstances: 1. When the victim is under eighteen (18) years of age and the offender is a parent, ascendant, step-parent, guardian, relative by consanguinity or affinity within the third civil degree, or the common-law spouse of the parent of the victim. x x x. We pointed out in the Echegaray case that the imposition of the death penalty in those cases where the law provides for a penalty ranging from reclusion perpetua to death does not give the trial court an unfettered but, rather, a guided discretion in the imposition of capital punishment. Particularly enlightening on how such discretion is to be exercised is the recent case of People v. Antonio Roque,[37] where the accused was likewise sentenced by the trial court to death for raping his two daughters aged nine and eleven. In the said case, we reduced the penalties from death to reclusion perpetua, to wit: The death penalty could thus be decreed; nevertheless, Section 22 of Republic Act No. 7659, amending Article 47 of the Revised Penal Code, recognizes that in death penalty cases the High Tribunal puts to a vote not only the issue of guilt of an appellant but also the question on the imposition of the death penalty itself. The law provides thusly: Sec. 22. Article 47 of the same Code is hereby amended to read as follows: ART. 47. In what cases the death penalty shall not be imposed; Automatic review of Death Penalty Cases. The death penalty shall be imposed in all cases in which it must be imposed under existing laws, except when the guilty person is below eighteen (18) years of age at the time of the commission of the crime or is more than seventy years of age or when upon appeal or automatic review of the case by the Supreme Court, the required majority vote is not obtained for the imposition of the death penalty, in which cases, the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua. Apparently, the trial court convicted accused-appellant of three counts of rape on the belief that he was being tried under the provisions of R.A. No. 8353. However, the crimes for which he was convicted were committed in 1996, before R.A. No. 8353 took effect in 1997. The said statute can not be made to apply retroactively for reasons earlier stated. Prior to its amendment by R.A. No. 8535, Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code required a criminal complaint before an Information is filed. There being no such complaint for the crime of rape on Daisy, Bobby is guilty for two counts of rape committed against his daughters, Dorivie and Deborrah. But given the circumstances attendant to this case, there is sufficient justification in imposing on accused-appellant the reduced penalty of reclusion perpetua for each count of rape. 4. People vs. Bernardino Domantay alias Junior Otot G.R. No. 130612, May 11, 1999 FACTS: This case is an appeal from the decision of the Regional Trial Court of Dagupan City (Branch 57), finding Bernardino Domantay guilty of rape with homicide and sentencing him to death, and to indemnify the heirs of the victim. Conviction was based primarily on the testimonies of SPO1 Espinoza and Celso Manuel, a radio reporter. SPO1 Espinoza testified that Bernardino confessed to the killing of Jennifer, 6 years old, whose body bore 38 stab wounds at the back and laceration on the right side of her hymen was found on October 17, 1996, 4pm on a bamboo grove in Guilig, Malasiqui Pangasinan and disclosed to him the location of the bayonet used which

was submitted as evidence for the prosecution. According to him, appellant waived assistance of counsel but the waiver was not put in writing nor made in the presence of counsel. On the other hand, Manuel declared that Bernardino, in an interview, admitted the brutal killing of Jennifer; that he was just outside the cell when he interviewed Bernardino who was then with his uncle. Also presented as a witness was Dr. Bandonill, medico-legal expert of the NBI, who testified that it was possible that the laceration could have been caused by something blunt other than the male organ. Edward Domantay also testified that apparently Bernardino said No diad Antipolo tan L[i]pa et walay massacre, diad Guilig wala, walay massacren kod dia, walay onakis-akis (In Antipolo and Lipa, there were massacres; here in Guilig, there will also be a massacre. I will massacre somebody here, and they will cry and cry). Edward Domantay saw that tucked in the left side of accused-appellants waistline was a bayonet without a cover handle. Issue: Is the conviction correct? Held: There is no circumstantial evidence from which to infer that accused-appellant sexually abused the victim. The only circumstance from which such inference might be made is that accused-appellant was seen with the victim walking toward the place where the girls body was found. Maybe he raped the girl. Maybe he did not. Maybe he simply inserted a blunt object into her organ, thus causing the lacerations in the hymen. Otherwise, there is no circumstance from which it might reasonably be inferred that he abused her, e.g., that he was zipping up his pants, that there was spermatozoa in the girls vaginal canal. Even assuming that Jennifer had been raped, there is no sufficient proof that it was accused-appellant who had raped her. He did not confess to having raped the victim. judgment of the trial court is SET ASIDE and another one is rendered FINDING accused-appellant guilty of homicide with the aggravating circumstance of abuse of superior strength and sentencing him to a prison term of 12 years of prision mayor, as minimum, to 20 years of reclusion temporal, as maximum, and ORDERING him to pay the heirs of Jennifer Domantay the amounts of P50,000.00, as indemnity, P50,000.00, as moral damages,P25,000.00, as exemplary damages, and P12,000.00, as actual damages, and the costs. 5. People vs Empante FACTS: Pedro B. Empante is married to Flaviana Intong Empante, they have 4 children. Elvie, the eldest, was born on March 6, 1982. Pedro at that time was a laborer at a quarry in Barangay Unidos, Plaridel, Misamis Occidental, while his wife worked as a domestic helper and goes home only on weekends. In November 1994, Elvie, then only 12 years old and a Grade VI student, was left alone with her father, Pedro in their house. She was cleaning their living room Pedro called her to his room and poked a hunting knife on her and warned her not to make any noise, otherwise he would kill her. Elvie resisted and tried to prevent Pedro from raping her by closing her thighs, to no avail. She was then warned not to tell her mother otherwise he would kill both of them. Elvie knew her father to be a violent man. He maltreated her mother. After the family moved to another place, in the evening of December 24, 1996, Elvie was going to church with her mother to hear midnight mass, but Pedro told her to stay at home. She then prepared to go to sleep with Pedro on her left side and her brothers beside Pedro. Then again Pedro raped his daughter, kissed her all over and even asked to stick out her tongue while pointing a hunting knife at her side. Elvie did not tell her mother, who arrived late that night, about the incident because of fear of her father, instead asked her mother that she from then on will sleep in another room, Pedro after seeing that Elvie was not in his room, got mad. Until finally Elvie told her mother about her experience. Elvies mother confronted her father and a quarrel ensued between the two. On January 16, 1997, Elvies mother left their house to work in Manila after being beaten up by Pedro. In the evening of January 18, 1997, she was again molested by her father and even asked the latter Why do you sexually abuse me? Why not go to others? Pedro replied, Why *do I have to+ go to others when you are here? Elvie feared that, with her mother gone, her father would make a mistress of her. She went to the house of her grandmother the next morning and told her her story. Her grandmother, Lourdes Intong, brought her to the barangay captain who referred them to the police and advised them to take Elvie to the hospital for examination. On June 20, 1997, Elvie filed with the Philippine National Police at Plaridel, Misamis Occidental three criminal complaints for rape which became the basis of informations lodged with the Regional Trial Court of Oroquieta City against Pedro.

CONTENTION OF THE STATE: Guilty beyond reasonable doubt for raping his own daughter and should suffer the penalty of death. CONTENTION OF THE ACCUSED Reversal of the findings of the TC as they made a mistake in not appreciating two mitigating circumstances in his favor, i.e., voluntary confession of guilt and intoxication, and sentenced him to a lesser penalty. ISSUE: Does Pedro deserve a penalty of reclusion perpertua and not death despite his plea for humanitarian consideration, plea of guilty and defense of intoxication which mitigate his liability? HELD: No. Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by Republic Act No. 7659, states: When and how rape is committed. - Rape is committed by having carnal knowledge of a woman under any of the following circumstances: 1. By using force or intimidation; 2. When the woman is deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious; and 3. When the woman is under twelve years of age or is demented. The crime of rape shall be punished by reclusion perpetua. Whenever the crime of rape is committed with the use of a deadly weapon or by two or more persons, the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death. When by reason or on the occasion of the rape, the victim has become insane, the penalty shall be death. When the rape is attempted or frustrated and a homicide is committed by reason or on the occasion thereof, the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death. When by reason or on the occasion of the rape, a homicide is committed, the penalty shall be death. The death penalty shall also be imposed if the crime of rape is committed with any of the following attendant circumstances: 1. when the victim is under eighteen (18) years of age and the offender is a parent, ascendant, step-parent, guardian, relative by consanguinity or affinity within the third civil degree, or the common-law spouse of the parent of the victim. 2. when the victim is under the custody of the police or military authorities. 3. when the rape is committed in full view of the husband, parent, any of the children or other relatives within the third degree of consanguinity. 4. when the victim is a religious or child below seven (7) years old. 5. when the offender knows that he is afflicted with Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) disease. 6. when committed by any member of the Armed Forces of the Philippines or the Philippine National Police or any law enforcement agency. 7. when by reason or on the occasion of the rape, the victim has suffered permanent physical mutilation.