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This is a case of an alleged bigamy committed by a woman named Beru, wife of a seafarer

named Owen who is onboard for around 7-9 months, they are married to each other since 2005. They
have a child named gayla who was born on 2010. The problem all began when Owen noticed that Beru
was no longer as affectionate as before prior to the birth of their child.
It made Owen suspicious, thinking that his wife was seeing another man which was reinforced
by an email from a friend who allegedly saw Beru having dinner with another man on two occasions.
Upon investigation, Owen got hold of a valid marriage contract he got from the national statistics office
which lead to the filing of the bigamy case against Beru.
On November 10, 2014 Beru received the summon for the City Prosecutor of Mandaue and by
virtue of a counter-affidavit, denied all allegation claiming that he was not previously married although
admitting the fact that she had previously signed a marriage contract with her former boyfriend Lando.
However, such marriage contract with Lando was supposedly a mere simulation since Lando
impregnated a woman named Corde and in order to discourage and prevent the latter from pursuing
lando, he begged for Berus signature which in turn, Beru signed as she was very much in love and a
pretend ceremony with a pastor was then celebrated.

Is the marriage of Lando and Beru valid?


We first note that the best evidence to prove marriage is the marriage contract (lim tanhu v. Ramolete,
66 SCRA 425. Therefore, before everything else we must presumed that Lando and Berus marriage is
valid, corroborated by Owens letter that according the copy of such marriage contract, such marriage is
still existing and valid.
Assuming that Berus story was true, we should ask if such marriage is one that is void or that of a
voidable marriage. The facts of Berus story meant that such marriage is not that of void ab initio by
virtue of Article 35, 36 ,37 and 38 of the Family Code. It appears that such marriage is one that is
voidable according to article 45 of the family code, one where consent of either party was obtained by
fraud, Unless such party afterwards, with the full knowledge of the facts constituting the fraud, freely
cohabited with the other as husband and wife but careful reading of such provision does not really fit
with Berus story and is quite incompatible with good faith, since she has full knowledge of such fraud
itself. Nonetheless, even if such marriage was voidable, judicial decision is still needed leaving the
subsequent marriage of Beru and owen, invalid by virtue of article 40 of the family code.
Is Beru guilty of Bigamy.