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1) Ong Chia v.

Republic of the Philippines and the Court of Appeals irreproachable manner during his stay in the Philippines, the State contended
Digested by: MDP that, although petitioner claimed that he and Ramona Villaruel had been married
twice, petitioner actually lived with his wife without the benefit of marriage from
Facts: This is a petition for review of the decision of the Court of Appeals 1953 until they were married in 1977. It was alleged that petitioner failed to
reversing the decision of the RTC South Cotabato admitting petitioner Ong Chia to present his 1953 marriage contract, if there be any. The State also annexed a
Philippine citizenship. copy of petitioner's 1977 marriage contract and a Joint-Affidavit executed by
petitioner and his wife. These documents show that when petitioner married
Petitioner was born in Amoy, China. At the age of 9 he arrived at the port of Ramona Villaruel on February 23, 1977, no marriage license had been required in
Manila. Since then, he has stayed in the Philippines where he found employment accordance with the Civil Code because petitioner and Ramona Villaruel had been
and eventually started his own business, married a Filipina, with whom he had living together as husband and wife since 1953 without the benefit of marriage.
four children. In 1989, at the age of 66, he filed a verified petition to be admitted This, according to the State, belies his claim that when he started living with his
as a Filipino citizen under the Revised Naturalization Law. Petitioner, after stating wife in 1953, they had already been married.
his qualifications as required and lack of the disqualifications of the law, his
petition was not acted upon owing to the fact that the said Special Committee on The State also argued that, as shown by petitioner's Immigrant Certificate of
Naturalization was not reconstituted after the February, 1986 revolution such that Residence, petitioner resided at "J.M. Basa Street, Iloilo," but he did not include
processing of petitions for naturalization by administrative process was said address in the petition.
CA: Reversed the trial court and denied petitioner's application for naturalization.
During the hearings, petitioner testified as to his qualifications and presented It ruled that due to the importance naturalization cases, the State is not
three witnesses to corroborate his testimony. So impressed was Prosecutor Isaac precluded from raising questions not presented in the lower court and brought up
Alvero V. Moran with the testimony of petitioner that, upon being asked by the for the first time on appeal.
court whether the State intended to present any witness present any witness
against him, he remarked that the testimony of the petitioner himself is already As correctly observed by the Office of the Solicitor General, petitioner Ong Chia
convincing that petitioner really deserves to be admitted as a citizen of the failed to state in this present petition for naturalization his other name, "LORETO
Philippines. And for this reason, we do not wish to present any evidence to CHIA ONG," which name appeared in his previous application. Names and
counteract or refute the testimony of the witnesses for the petitioner, as well as pseudonyms must be stated in the petition for naturalization and failure to include
the petitioner himself. the same militates against a decision in his favor. This is a mandatory
requirement to allow those persons who know (petitioner) by those other names
Accordingly, on August 25, 1999, the trial court granted the petition and admitted to come forward and inform the authorities of any legal objection which might
petitioner to Philippine citizenship. The State, however, through the Office of the adversely affect his application for citizenship.
Solicitor General, appealed all the names by which he is or had been known; (2)
failed to state all his former place of residence; (3) failed to conduct himself in a Furthermore, Ong Chia failed to disclose in his petition for naturalization that he
proper and irreproachable manner during his entire stay in the Philippines; (4) formerly resided in "J.M. Basa St., Iloilo" and "Alimodian, Iloilo." The Law requires
has no known lucrative trade or occupation and his previous incomes have been the applicant to state in his petition "his present and former places of residence."
insufficient or misdeclared; and (5) failed to support his petition with the This requirement is mandatory and failure of the petitioner to comply with it is
appropriate documentary evidence. fatal to the petition. As explained by the Court, the reason for the provision is to
give the public, as well as the investigating agencies of the government, upon the
Annexed to the State's appellant's brief was a copy of a 1977 petition for publication of the petition, an opportunity to be informed thereof and voice their
naturalization filed by petitioner with the Special Committee on Naturalization in objections against the petitioner. By failing to comply with this provision, the
which petitioner stated that in addition to his name of "Ong Chia," he had likewise petitioner is depriving the public and said agencies of such opportunity, thus
been known since childhood as "Loreto Chia Ong." As petitioner, however, failed defeating the purpose of the law.
to state this other name in his 1989 petition for naturalization, it was contended
that his petition must fail. The state also annexed income tax returns allegedly Ong Chia had not also conducted himself in a proper and irreproachable manner
filed by petitioner to show that his net income could hardly support himself and when he lived-in with his wife for several years, and sired four children out of
his family. To prove that petitioner failed to conduct himself in a proper and wedlock. It has been the consistent ruling that the "applicant's 8-year


cohabitation with his wife without the benefit of clergy and begetting by her three
children out of wedlock is a conduct far from being proper and irreproachable as Petitioner offered no evidence to disprove the authenticity of the documents
required by the Revised Naturalization Law", and therefore disqualifies him from presented by the State.
becoming a citizen.
Furthermore, the Court notes that these documents petitioner's marriage
Lastly, petitioner Ong Chia's alleged annual income in 1961 of P5,000.00, contract, the joint affidavit executed by him and his wife, and petitioner's income
exclusive of bonuses, commissions and allowances, is not lucrative income. His tax returns are all public documents. As such, they have been executed under
failure to file an income tax return "because he is not liable for income tax yet" oath. They are thus reliable. Since petitioner failed to make a satisfactory showing
confirms that his income is low. Now that they are in their old age, petitioner Ong of any flaw or irregularity that may cast doubt on the authenticity of these
Chia and his wife are living on the allowance given to them by their children. The documents, it is our conclusion that the appellate court did not err in relying upon
monthly pension given by the elder children of the applicant cannot be added to them.
his income to make it lucrative it is contingent, speculative and precarious.
Address: "J.M. Basa St., Iloilo" in his petition. This address appears on
Issue: WON appellate court erred in considering the documents which had petitioner's Immigrant Certificate of Residence, a document which forms part of
merely been annexed by the State to its appellant's brief and, on the basis of the records as Annex A of his 1989 petition for naturalization. Petitioner admits
which, justified the reversal of the trial court's decision. Not having been that he failed to mention said address in his petition, but argues that since the
presented and formally offered as evidence, they are mere "scraps of paper Immigrant Certificate of Residence containing it had been fully published and
devoid of any evidentiary value," such publication constitutes substantial compliance. It is settled, however, that
naturalization laws should be rigidly enforced and strictly construed in favor of the
Ruling: The contention has no merit. Petitioner failed to note Rule 143 of the government and against the applicant. As noted by the State, C.A. No. 473, 7
Rules of Court which provides that These rules shall not apply to land clearly provides that the applicant for naturalization shall set forth in the petition
registration, cadastral and election cases, naturalization and insolvency his present and former places of residence. This provision and the rule of strict
proceedings, and other cases not herein provided for, except by analogy application of the law in naturalization cases defeat petitioner's argument of
or in a suppletory character and whenever practicable and convenient. "substantial compliance" with the requirement under the Revised Naturalization
Law. On this ground alone, the instant petition ought to be denied.
The rule on formal offer of evidence now being invoked by petitioner is
clearly not applicable to the present case involving a petition for 2) Bantolino, et al v. Coca-cola Bottlers, G.R. No. 153660, 10 June 2003
naturalization. The only instance when said rules may be applied by Digested by: KAD
analogy or suppletorily in such cases is when it is "practicable and
convenient." That is not the case here, since reliance upon the documents Facts: Petitioners Bantolino, et.al., filed a complaint against respondents for
presented by the State for the first time on appeal, in fact, appears to be the unfair labor practice through illegal dismissal. The respondents filed for the
more practical and convenient course of action considering that decisions in dismissal of the complaint alleging that there was no employer-employee
naturalization proceedings are not covered by the rule on res judicata. relationship. The Labor Arbiter ruled in favor of the employees, and ordered their
Consequently, a final favorable judgment does not preclude the State from later reinstatement and payment of the back wages. Labor Arbiter ruled that in
on moving for a revocation of the grant of naturalization on the basis of the same contrast with the negative declarations of respondent as to the existence of
documents. employer-employee relationship, the testimonies of the complainants were more
credible as they sufficiently supplied every detail of their employment, specifically
Petitioner claims that as a result of the failure of the State to present and formally identifying who their salesmen/drivers were, their places of assignment, aside
offer its documentary evidence before the trial court, he was denied the right to from their dates of engagement and dismissal. The NLRC sustained the decision
object against their authenticity, effectively depriving him of his fundamental right of the Labor Arbiter. However, the Court of Appeals modified such decision on the
to procedural due process. We are not persuaded. Indeed, the reason for the ground that the affidavits of the complainants should not have been given
rule prohibiting the admission of evidence is to afford the opposite probative value for their failure to affirm the contents thereof and to undergo
party the chance to object to their admissibility. Petitioner cannot claim cross-examination, thus mere hearsay evidence and has no real evidentiary value.
that he was deprived of the right to object to the authenticity of the documents
submitted to the appellate court by the State.


Issue: Whether or not administrative bodies such as the NLRC should be strictly collective bargaining agreement which would otherwise have been entered into
bound by the rules of evidence. by the parties.

Ruling: NO. Administrative bodies like the NLRC are not bound by the technical The appellate courts ruling that giving credence to the Pahayag and the
niceties of law and procedure and the rules obtaining in courts of law. To require minutes of the meeting which were not verified and notarized would violate the
otherwise would be to negate the rationale and purpose of the summary nature rule on parol evidence is erroneous. Parol evidence rule should not be
of the proceedings mandated by the Rules and to make mandatory the strictly applied in labor cases. In labor cases, the rules of evidence prevailing
application of the technical rules of evidence. The argument that the affidavit is in courts of law or equity are not controlling. Labor Arbiter is not precluded from
hearsay because the affiants were not presented for cross-examination is not accepting and evaluating evidence other than and even contrary to what is
persuasive because the rules of evidence are not strictly observed in proceedings stated in the CBA.
before administrative bodies like the NLRC where decisions may be reached on
the basis of position papers only." Under the Rules of the Commission, the Labor
Arbiter is given the discretion to determine the necessity of a formal trial or 4) Atienza v. Board of Medicine, 9 February 2011
hearing. Labor Arbiter and the NLRC are authorized to adopt reasonable means to Digested by: CMU
ascertain the facts in each case speedily and objectively and without regard to
technicalities of law and procedure, all in the interest of due process. Facts: Due to her lumbar pains, private respondent Editha Sioson went to Rizal
Medical Center (RMC) for check-up. She was referred to Dr. Pedro Lantin
III of RMC who, accordingly, ordered several diagnostic laboratory tests. The
3) Cirtek Employees v. Cirtek Electronics, 6 June 2011 tests revealed that her right kidney is normal. It was ascertained, however, that
Digested by: JV her left kidney is non-functioning and non-visualizing. Thus, she underwent
kidney operation.
Facts: Cirtek Electronics avers that petitioner, in filing the petition for certiorari
under rule 65 availed of a wrong remedy. The Court erred in resolving a factual Private respondent's husband, Romeo Sioson, filed a complaint for gross
issue (whether the August 24, 2005 MOA was validly entered into) which is not negligence and/or incompetence before the [BOM] against the doctors
the office of petition for certiorari. who allegedly participated in the fateful kidney operation. It was alleged
in the complaint that the gross negligence and/or incompetence committed by the
Respondent-movant maintains that the Secretary of Labor cannot insist on a said doctors, including petitioner, consists of the removal of private
ruling beyond the compromise agreement entered into by the parties; and that, respondent's fully functional right kidney, instead of the left non-
as early as February 5, 2010, petitioner Union had already filed with the functioning and non-visualizing kidney. The complaint was heard by the
Department of Labor and Employment a resolution of disaffiliation from the [BOM]. After complainant Romeo Sioson presented his evidence, private
Federation of Free Workers resulting in the latters lack of personality to represent respondent Editha Sioson, also named as complainant there, filed her formal
the workers in the present case. offer of documentary evidence. Attached to the formal offer of documentary
evidence are her Exhibits "A" to "D," which she offered for the purpose of proving
The petitioner indeed availed of the wrong remedy, however the Court resolved that her kidneys were both in their proper anatomical locations at the time she
to give it due course since whether the petition was filed under Rule 65 or Rule was operated. Exhibit A to D were certified photocopies of the X-ray request
45 it was filed within 15 days from petitioners receipt of the resolution of CA forms on which are handwritten entries which are the interpretation of the
denying its MR. The ultimate purpose of all rules of procedures is to results of the examination.
achieve substantial justice as expeditiously as possible.
Petitioners Allegations: He alleged that said exhibits are inadmissible because
Issue: Whether or not the Secretary of Labor is empowered to give arbitral the same are mere photocopies, not properly identified and authenticated, and
awards in the exercise of his authority to assume jurisdiction over labor disputes. intended to establish matters which are hearsay. He added that the exhibits are
incompetent to prove the purpose for which they are offered.
Ruling: Yes. Secretary of Labor acted well within his jurisdiction. While an
arbitral award cannot per se be categorized as an agreement voluntarily entered The Board of Medicine admitted the documentary evidence offered by private
into by the parties, the award can be considered as an approximation of a respondent. Petitioner moved for reconsideration. The BOM denied the motion for


reconsideration of petitioner in its Order dated October 8, 2004. It concluded that their proper anatomical locations at the time she was operated on, is
it should first admit the evidence being offered so that it can determine its presumed under Section 3, Rule 131 of the Rules of Court:
probative value when it decides the case. According to the Board, it can Sec. 3. Disputable presumptions. The following presumptions are
determine whether the evidence is relevant or not if it will take a look at it satisfactory if uncontradicted, but may be contradicted and overcome
through the process of admission. Disagreeing with the BOM, and as previously by other evidence:
adverted to, Atienza filed a petition for certiorari with the CA, assailing the BOM's xxx xxx xxx
Orders which admitted Editha Sioson's Formal Offer of Documentary Evidence. (y) That things have happened according to the ordinary
The CA dismissed the petition for certiorari for lack of merit. course of nature and the ordinary habits of life.

Issue: WON the evidence offered by Editha Sioson are admissible or not. The exhibits are certified photocopies of X-ray Request Forms filed in connection
with Editha's medical case. The documents contain handwritten entries
Ruling: The evidence is admissible. interpreting the results of the examination. These exhibits were actually attached
as annexes to Dr. Pedro Lantin III's counter affidavit filed with the Office of the
To begin with, it is well-settled that the rules of evidence are not strictly City Prosecutor of Pasig City, which was investigating the criminal complaint for
applied in proceedings before administrative bodies such as the negligence filed by Editha against the doctors of Rizal Medical Center (RMC) who
BOM. [I]t is the safest policy to be liberal, not rejecting them on doubtful or handled her surgical procedure. To lay the predicate for her case, Editha offered
technical grounds, but admitting them unless plainly irrelevant, immaterial or the exhibits in evidence to prove that her "kidneys were both in their proper
incompetent, for the reason that their rejection places them beyond the anatomical locations at the time" of her operation.
consideration of the court, if they are thereafter found relevant or competent; on
the other hand, their admission, if they turn out later to be irrelevant or The fact sought to be established by the admission of Editha's exhibits, that her
incompetent, can easily be remedied by completely discarding them or ignoring "kidneys were both in their proper anatomical locations at the time" of her
them. operation, need not be proved as it is covered by mandatory judicial notice.

From the foregoing, we emphasize the distinction between the Unquestionably, the rules of evidence are merely the means for ascertaining the
admissibility of evidence and the probative weight to be accorded the same truth respecting a matter of fact. Thus, they likewise provide for some facts
pieces of evidence. Admissibility of evidence refers to the which are established and need not be proved, such as those covered by judicial
question of whether or not the circumstance (or evidence) is to be considered at notice, both mandatory and discretionary. Laws of nature involving the physical
all. On the other hand, the Probative value of evidence refers to the sciences, specifically biology, include the structural make-up and
question of whether or not it proves an issue. composition of living things such as human beings. In this case, we may take
judicial notice that Editha's kidneys before, and at the time of, her operation, as
Petitioner's insistence that the admission of Editha's exhibits violated his with most human beings, were in their proper anatomical locations.
substantive rights leading to the loss of his medical license is misplaced. Petitioner
mistakenly relies on Section 20, Article I of the Professional Regulation Contrary to the assertion of petitioner, the best evidence rule is inapplicable.
Commission Rules of Procedure, which reads: Section 3 of Rule 130 provides:
Section 20. Administrative investigation shall be conducted in
accordance with these Rules. The Rules of Court shall only apply in Sec. 3. Original document must be produced; exceptions.
these proceedings by analogy or on a suppletory character and When the subject of inquiry is the contents of a document, no
whenever practicable and convenient. Technical errors in the evidence shall be admissible other than the original document itself,
admission of evidence which do not prejudice the substantive rights of except in the following cases:
either party shall not vitiate the proceedings. (a) When the original has been lost or destroyed, or cannot be
produced in court, without bad faith on the part of the offeror;
As pointed out by the appellate court, the admission of the exhibits did not (b) When the original is in the custody or under the control of the
prejudice the substantive rights of petitioner because, at any rate, the party against whom the evidence is offered, and the latter fails to
fact sought to be proved thereby, that the two kidneys of Editha were in produce it after reasonable notice;


(c) When the original consists of numerous accounts or other rest room and after hearing the door slam he called the police. The two men had
documents which cannot be examined in court without great taken watches and rings of the stipulated value of $4,455.21 and $140 in cash
loss of time and the fact sought to be established from them is only from the register. Krekeler identified the appellant from pictures, and three weeks
the general result of the whole; and later, after his capture, in a hospital and upon the trial positively identified him as
(d) When the original is a public record in the custody of a public the taller of the two holdup men.
officer or is recorded in a public office.
The appellant objects, however, in his motion for a new trial that a police officer
Finally, these exhibits do not constitute hearsay evidence of the anatomical was permitted to testify that $258.02 in currency and two pennies were taken
locations of Editha's kidneys. To further drive home the point, the anatomical from his person. It is said that the introduction of these exhibits was "immaterial
positions, whether left or right, of Editha's kidneys, and the removal of one or and irrelevant, neither tended to prove nor disprove any of the issues involved in
both, may still be established through a belated ultrasound or x-ray of her this case;
abdominal area. In fact, the introduction of secondary evidence, such as
copies of the exhibits, is allowed. Witness Dr. Nancy Aquino testified that Issue: WON testimony as to the $258.02 is admissible?
the Records Office of RMC no longer had the originals of the exhibits "because [it]
transferred from the previous building, . . . to the new building." Ultimately, Ruling: NO. Unlike the roll of dimes in State v. Hampton, Mo., 275 S.W.2d 356,
since the originals cannot be produced, the BOM properly admitted the testimony as to the $258.02 was not offered in proof of the substantive fact
Editha's formal offer of evidence and, thereafter, the BOM shall of the crime. In that case the five-dollar roll of dimes wrapped in a roll of green
determine the probative value thereof when it decides the case. paper was found on the defendant the same day of the burglary and while the
fact was a circumstance admissible in evidence it was held to not constitute
5) Gomez v. Gomez, G.R. No. 156284, 6 February 2007 substantive evidence inconsistent with the hypothesis of the defendant's
Digested by: AS innocence of burglary.

6) People v. Turco, 337 SCRA 714 (2000) The proof of the money here was evidently on the theory that Ball did not have or
Digested by: JQ was not likely to have such a sum of money on his person prior to the
commission of the offense.
7) State of Missouri v. William Arthur Bull, 339 S.W. 2d 783 Mo. 1960,
Digested by: TS As to this the facts were that he had been out of the penitentiary about eight
months and the inference the state would draw is that he had no visible means of
Facts: About 2:30 in the afternoon of October 15, 1958, two colored men, one of support and no employment and could not possibly have $258.02 except from
them tall and the other short, entered the Krekeler Jewelry Store at 1651 South robberies. Of course, there was no such proof and Ball claimed that he had
39th Street. The taller man spent ten or fifteen minutes selecting and buying a worked intermittently for a custodian or janitor of an apartment house and that
cigarette lighter, he also talked about buying and looked at watches and rings. As he had won the $258.02 in a series of crap games at a named place. Not only
the taller man looked at jewelry and made his purchase the shorter man looked in was Krekeler unable to identify the money or any of the items on Ball's person as
the cases and moved about in the store. Later in the day, about 5:50, as John having come from the jewelry store so that in fact they were not admissible in
Krekeler was placing rings and watches in the safe preparatory to closing the evidence (annotation 3 A.L.R. 1213), the charge here was that Ball and his
store two men entered, one of them tall and the other short, and Krekeler accomplice took jewelry of the value of $4,455.21 and $140 in cash from the cash
immediately recognized them as the two men who had been in the store at 2:30, register. There was no proof as to the denomination of the money in the cash
especially the taller man. He recognized the taller man's narrow-brimmed, tall register, it was simply a total of $140. Here nineteen days had elapsed, there was
hat, brown jacket, gray stirt and particularly a scar on his face. The shorter man no proof that Ball had suddenly come into possession of the $258.02 (annotation
started to walk behind the counter and as Krekeler intercepted him he "drew a 123 A.L.R. 119) and in all these circumstances "The mere possession of a
long barreled blue .38 and stuck it in my face." Both men followed Krekeler, the quantity of money is in itself no indication that the possessor was the taker of
shorter man with the gun in "his back," directing him to the watch repair money charged as taken, because in general all money of the same denomination
department and finally into the rest room in the rear of the store. He was told not and material is alike, and the hypothesis that the money found is the same as the
to turn around and stood facing the wall. He could hear jewelry being dumped money taken is too forced and extraordinary to be receivable." 1 Wigmore,
into a bag and the "jingle" of the cash register. The two men left Krekeler in the Evidence, Sec. 154, p. 601. In the absence of proof or of a fair inference from the


record that the money in Ball's possession at the time of his arrest came from or Ruling: The Supreme Court held that the reputation of the company that
had some connection with the robbery and in the absence of a plain showing of manufactured the safety mechanism as well as the reputation of other companies
his impecuniousness before the robbery and his sudden affluence (State v. that uses the same kind of safety mechanism is relevant because it has a logical
Garrett, 285 Mo. 279, 226 S.W. 4), the evidence was not in fact relevant connection to the fact in issue. The fact that no suit has been filed against them
and in the circumstances was obviously prejudicial for if it did not tend arising from the same complaint is relevant evidence. It tends to prove or
to prove the offense for which the appellant was on trial the jury may disprove the fact in issue.
have inferred that he was guilty of another robbery.

The admission of the evidence in the circumstances of this record infringed the 9) People v. Bongcarawan, G.R. No. 143944, 11 July 2002
right to a fair trial and for that reason the judgment is reversed and the cause Digested by: DPS
Facts: Accused Basher Bongcarawan y Macarambon was charged in an
Information which reads, thus:
8) Lopez v. Heesen, 69 N.M. 206, 365 P. 2d 448 N.M. 1961, 22 August That on or about March 13, 1999, in Iligan City, the said accused, without
1961 authority of law, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously have in his
Digested by: DJT possession, custody and control eight (8) packs of Methamphetamine
Hydrochloride, a regulated drug commonly known as Shabu, weighing
Facts: This is an action for damages arising from a shooting incident where the approximately 400 grams, without the corresponding license or prescription.
complainant, Mr. Lopez was injured as a result of an accidental discharge of a
rifle belonging to Mr. Heesen. Contrary to and in violation of Section 16, Article III of RA 6425, otherwise known
as the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972, as amended by RA 7659.
Mr. Heesen is a former military officer who went into deer hunting. The rifle was
manufactured by Sears and Co. In the course of deer hunting, the rifle During the arraignment, the accused pleaded not guilty. Trial ensued.
accidentally discharged hitting Mr. Lopez in the chest. Originally, the action was
filed against Mr. Heesen but eventually the complaint was amended to implead Evidence for the prosecution shows that on March 11, 1999, an interisland
the manufacturer. The case went on appeal but only insofar as the manufacturer. passenger ship, M/V Super Ferry 5, sailed from Manila to Iligan City. At about
3:00 a.m. on March 13, 1999, the vessel was about to dock at the port of Iligan
The theory of the complainant was that the safety mechanism of the rifle is City when its security officer received a complaint from a passenger about her
defective and unsafe because it readily goes into fire from safety mode. The missing jewelry. The passenger suspected one of her co-passengers at cabin no.
manufacturer interposed the defense that the safety mechanism of the rifle is not 106 as the culprit. The security officer and four (4) other members of the vessel
defective. In order to prove its defense, the manufacturer presented an expert security force accompanied the passenger to search for the suspect whom they
witness to prove the reputation of the company that manufactured the safety later found at the economy section. The suspect was identified as the accused,
mechanism and the reputation of the other companies, which manufactured Basher Bongcarawan, he was then informed of the complaint and was invited to
guns, which used the same safety mechanism. The witness tried to prove that for go back to cabin no. 106. With his consent, he was bodily searched, but no
all the years that these companies were in business, they have never been sued jewelry was found. He was then escorted by two (2) security agents back to the
for alleged defective safety mechanisms. Mr. Lopez objected to these pieces of economy section to get his baggage. The accused took a Samsonite suitcase and
evidence on the ground of irrelevancy. He argued that the reputation of the brought this back to the cabin. When requested by the security, the accused
manufacturer is irrelevant to the issue of whether the safety mechanism is opened the suitcase, revealing a brown bag and small plastic packs containing
defective. white crystalline substance. Suspecting the substance to be shabu, the security
personnel immediately reported the matter to the ship captain and took pictures
Issue: WON the reputation of the company that manufactured the safety of the accused beside the suitcase and its contents. They also called the
mechanism and the reputation of the other companies which used the same Philippine Coast Guard for assistance. At about 6:00 a.m., some members of the
mechanism is relevant Philippine Coast Guard arrived and took custody of the accused and the seized
items--the Samsonite suitcase, a brown bag and eight (8) small plastic packs of
white crystalline substance. When asked about the contraband articles, the


accused explained that he was just requested by a certain Alican Alex Macapudi
to bring the suitcase to the latters brother in Iligan City. The accused and the 1.) Yes, it is admissible as evidence. The right against unreasonable search and
seized items were later turned over by the coast guard to the Presidential Anti- seizure is a fundamental right protected by the Constitution. Evidence acquired in
Organized Crime Task Force (PAOCTF). The accused was brought to the PAOCTF violation of this right shall be inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding.
Headquarters, while the packs of white crystalline substance were sent to the NBI Whenever this right is challenged, an individual may choose between invoking the
Regional Office in Cagayan de Oro City for laboratory examination. NBI Forensic constitutional protection or waiving his right by giving consent to the search and
Chemist Nicanor Cruz later confirmed the substance to be methamphetamine seizure. It should be stressed, however, that protection is against transgression
hydrochloride, commonly known as shabu, weighing 399.3266 grams. committed by the government or its agent. As held by this Court in the case
of People v. Marti, in the absence of governmental interference, liberties
The accused testified and proffered his own version. On March 11, 1999, at about guaranteed by the Constitution cannot be invoked against the State. The
10:00 p.m., he was in Quiapo, Manila where he met Alican Alex Macapudi. He constitutional proscription against unlawful searches and seizures applies as a
was requested by Macapudi to bring a Samsonite suitcase containing sunglasses restraint directed only against the government and its agencies tasked with the
and watches to Iligan City, and to give it to Macapudis brother at the Iligan port. enforcement of the law. Thus, it could only be invoked against the State to whom
He boarded the M/V Super Ferry 5 on the same night, carrying a big luggage full the restraint against arbitrary and unreasonable exercise of power is imposed.
of clothes, a small luggage or maleta containing the sunglasses and brushes he
bought from Manila, and the Samsonite suitcase of Macapudi. He stayed at cabin In this case, the baggage of the accused-appellant was searched by the vessel
no. 106. At about 4:00 a.m of March 13, 1999, as the vessel was about to dock at security personnel. It was only after they found shabu inside the suitcase that
the Iligan port, he took his baggage and positioned himself at the economy they called the Philippine Coast Guard for assistance. The search and seizure of
section to be able to disembark ahead of the other passengers. There, he met a the suitcase and the contraband items was therefore carried out without
friend, Ansari Ambor. While they were conversing, five (5) members of the vessel government intervention, and hence, the constitutional protection against
security force and a woman whom he recognized as his co-passenger at cabin no. unreasonable search and seizure does not apply.
106 came and told him that he was suspected of stealing jewelry. He voluntarily
went with the group back to cabin no. 106 where he was frisked. Subsequently, The vessel security officer in the case at bar is a private employee and does not
he was asked to get his baggage, so he went back to the economy section and discharge any governmental function. In contrast, police officers are agents of the
took the big luggage and Macapudis Samsonite suitcase. He left the state tasked with the sovereign function of enforcement of the law.
small maleta containing sunglasses and brushes for fear that they would be
confiscated by the security personnel. When requested, he voluntarily opened the 2.) Yes. In a prosecution for illegal possession of dangerous drugs, the following
big luggage, but refused to do the same to the Samsonite suitcase which he facts must be proven beyond reasonable doubt, viz: (1) that the accused is in
claimed was not his and had a secret combination lock. The security personnel possession of the object identified as a prohibited or a regulated drug; (2) that
forcibly opened the suitcase and found packs of white crystalline substance inside such possession is not authorized by law; and (3) that the accused freely and
which they suspected to be shabu. They took pictures of him with the consciously possessed the said drug. The first two elements were sufficiently
merchandise, and asked him to sign a turn over receipt which was later given to proven in this case, and were in fact undisputed. We are left with the third.
the Philippine Coast Guard, then to the PAOCTF.
Possession of dangerous drugs constitutes prima facie evidence of knowledge
On December 27, 1999, the trial court rendered judgment against Bongcarawan. or animus possidendi sufficient to convict an accused in the absence of a
satisfactory explanation of such possession. Hence, the burden of evidence is
Issues: shifted to the accused to explain the absence of knowledge or animus possidendi.
1.) Whether or not the Samsonite suitcase containing the methamphetamine
hydrochloride or shabu which was allegedly forcibly opened and searched without In this respect, Bongcarawan has utterly failed. His testimony, uncorroborated,
the consent of the accused is admissible as evidence against him. self-serving and incredulous, was not given credence by the trial court. We find
no reason to disagree. Well-settled is the rule that in the absence of palpable
2.) Whether or not Bongcarawan can be convicted of the crime charged even if error or grave abuse of discretion on the part of the trial judge, the trial courts
he has no knowledge or intent to possess the dangerous drug. evaluation of the credibility of witnesses will not be disturbed on appeal.
Moreover, evidence must be credible in itself to deserve credence and weight in
Ruling: law. In this case, the accused-appellant admits that when he was asked to get his


baggage, he knew it would be inspected. Why he got the Samsonite suitcase Marti contended that the evidence subject of the imputed offense had been
allegedly not owned by him and which had a combination lock known only to the obtained in violation of his constitutional rights against unreasonable search and
owner remains unclear. He also claims that he did not present his seizure and of privacy of communication (Sec 2 and 3, Art. III, Constitution) and
small maleta for inspection for fear that its contents consisting of expensive therefore argued that it should be held inadmissible as evidence.
sunglasses and brushes would be confiscated, but he brought the Samsonite
suitcase which is not his and also contained expensive sunglasses, and even Issue: Whether or not the subject searched and seized is admissible as evidence.
Ruling: In a number of cases, the Court strictly adhered to the exclusionary rule
The things in possession of a person are presumed by law to be owned by him. and has struck down the admissibility of evidence obtained in violation of the
To overcome this presumption, it is necessary to present clear and convincing constitutional safeguard against unreasonable searches and seizures. It must be
evidence to the contrary. In this case, the accused points to a certain Alican Alex noted, however, that in all those cases adverted to, the evidence so obtained
Macapudi as the owner of the contraband, but presented no evidence to support were invariably procured by the State acting through the medium of its law
his claim. enforcers or other authorized government agencies.

Mere denial of ownership will not suffice especially if, as in the case at bar, it is On the other hand, the case at bar assumes a peculiar character since the
the keystone of the defense of the accused-appellant. Stories can easily be evidence sought to be excluded was primarily discovered and obtained by a
fabricated. It will take more than bare-bone allegations to convince this Court that private person, acting in a private capacity and without the intervention and
a courier of dangerous drugs is not its owner and has no knowledge or intent to participation of State authorities. Under the circumstances, can accused/appellant
possess the same. validly claim that his constitutional right against unreasonable searches and
seizure has been violated? Stated otherwise, may an act of a private individual,
10) People v. Marti, 193 SCRA 57 allegedly in violation of appellant's constitutional rights, be invoked against the
Digested by: LT State?

We hold in the negative. In the absence of governmental interference, the

Facts: Andre Marti and his common law wife went to the booth of Manila liberties guaranteed by the Constitution cannot be invoked against the State.
Packing and Export Forwarders carrying with them 4 packs of wrapped packages.
The proprietress asked the if the package can be examined but was refused and The contraband in the case at bar having come into possession of the
was reassured that the package contained books, cigars, and gloves and were Government without the latter transgressing appellant's rights against
gifts to his friend in Zurich, Switzerland. Before delivery to the to the Bureau of unreasonable search and seizure, the Court sees no cogent reason why the same
Customs and/or Bureau of Posts, following the standard operating procedure, Mr. should not be admitted against him in the prosecution of the offense charged.
Job Reyes (Proprietor) opened the box for final inspection. When he opened the
box, a peculiar odor emitted therefrom and out of curiosity took a several grams The constitutional proscription against unlawful searches and seizures therefore
of the contents thereof. applies as a restraint directed only against the government and its agencies
tasked with the enforcement of the law. Thus, it could only be invoked against the
Mr. Reyes prepared a letter reporting the shipment to the NBI and requested State to whom the restraint against arbitrary and unreasonable exercise of power
laboratory sample he extracted from the package. In the presence of NBI agents, is imposed.
Mr. Job brought out of the box in which the package were placed and opened the
top flaps, removed the styro-foan and look out the cellophane wrappers from If the search is made upon the request of law enforcers, a warrant must generally
inside the gloves. Dried marijuana leaves were found to have been contained be first secured if it is to pass the test of constitutionality. However, if the search
inside the cellophane wrapper. The other packages were likewise opened by is made at the behest or initiative of the proprietor of a private establishment for
Reyes and found to contain marijuana leaves. The NBI made an inventory and its own and private purposes, as in the case at bar, and without the intervention
took charge of the box. After examination by forensic chemists, the dried leaves of police authorities, the right against unreasonable search and seizure cannot be
were found to be marijuana flowering tops. Thereafter, an information was filed invoked for only the act of private individual, not the law enforcers, is involved. In
against Marti for violation of RA 6425, known as the Dangerous Drug Act. sum, the protection against unreasonable searches and seizures cannot be


extended to acts committed by private individuals so as to bring it within the owner and shipper thereof giving more weight to the presumption that, things
ambit of alleged unlawful intrusion by the government. which a person possesses, or exercises acts of ownership over, are owned by him.
At this point, appellant is therefore estopped to claim otherwise.
Alleged violations against unreasonable search and seizure may only be invoked
against the State by an individual unjustly traduced by the exercise of sovereign 11) People v. Maqueda, 242 SCRA 565
authority. To agree with appellant that an act of a private individual in violation of Digested by: LAR
the Bill of Rights should also be construed as an act of the State would result in
serious legal complications and an absurd interpretation of the constitution. Facts: Early morning of 27 August 91, Horace Barker was brutally slain and
Teresita, the wife, badly battered with lead pipes on the occasion of a robbery in
Similarly, the admissibility of the evidence procured by an individual effected their home at Tuba, Benguet. The suspects of the crime of robbery with homicide
through private seizure equally applies, in pari passu, to the alleged violation, and serious physical injuries were Rene Salvamante (former houseboy of the
non-governmental as it is, of appellant's constitutional rights to privacy and spouse) and co-conspirator Richard Malig y Severino and Hector Maqueda aka
communication. Putol.

Appellant would like us to believe that he was not the owner of the packages Witnesses of the prosecution:
which contained prohibited drugs but rather a certain Michael, a German national, Mike Tabayan and Mark Pacio who positively identified salvamante and
whom appellant met in a pub along Ermita, Manila; that in the course of their 30- maqueda as the men who asked directions from them
minute conversation, Michael requested him to ship the packages and gave him Norie Dacara and Julieta Villanueva (the housemaids of the spouses) and
P2,000.00 for the cost of the shipment since the German national was about to Teresita Mendoza Barker.
leave the country the next day (October 15, 1987, TSN, pp. 2-10).
The charge against Malig was dropped because further evaluation of the
Rather than give the appearance of veracity, we find appellant's disclaimer as evidence disclosed no sufficient evidence against him. Maqueda was captured
incredulous, self-serving and contrary to human experience. It can easily be while Salvamante was still at large.
fabricated. An acquaintance with a complete stranger struck in half an hour could On 4 March 1992, Maqueda was arrested Guinyangan and he was thereafter
not have pushed a man to entrust the shipment of four (4) parcels and shell out brought in the Benguet Provincial Jail. Maqueda thereafter signed a Sinumpaang
P2,000.00 for the purpose and for appellant to readily accede to comply with the Salaysay wherein he narrated his participation in the crime at the Barker house
undertaking without first ascertaining its contents. As stated by the trial court, on 27 August 1991.
"(a) person would not simply entrust contraband and of considerable value at that
as the marijuana flowering tops, and the cash amount of P2,000.00 to a complete Maquedas Contention:
stranger like the Accused. The Accused, on the other hand, would not simply Alibi - that at the time the crime Was committed he was not in Benguet but
accept such undertaking to take custody of the packages and ship the same from in Sukat, Muntinlupa, Metro Manila, and the failure of the star witnesses
a complete stranger on his mere say-so" (Teresita and the housemaids) for the Prosecution to identify him. He alleges
that Teresita, when investigated at the hospital, Pointed to Richard Malig as
Denials, if unsubstantiated by clear and convincing evidence, are negative self- the companion of Rene Salvamante, and that when initially investigated, the
serving evidence which deserve no weight in law and cannot be given greater two housemaids gave a description of Salvamante's companion that fitted
evidentiary weight than the testimony of credible witnesses who testify on Richard Malig.
affirmative matters. last time he was with salvamante was on the day after Christmas in calauag
and he helped the latter in selling a cassette recorder
Evidence to be believed, must not only proceed from the mouth of a credible
witness, but it must be credible in itself such as the common experience and Trial Court Ruling:
observation of mankind can approve as probable under the circumstances. As Trial court had doubts on the identification of Maqueda by prosecution witnesses
records further show, appellant did not even bother to ask Michael's full name, his Teresita Mendoza Barker, Norie Dacara, and Julieta Villanueva and thus
complete address or passport number. Furthermore, if indeed, the German disregarded their testimonies on this matter, it decreed a conviction "based on
national was the owner of the merchandise, appellant should have so indicated in the confession and the proof of corpus delicti" as well as on circumstantial
the contract of shipment. On the contrary, appellant signed the contract as the evidence.


Issue: WON the circumstances shown is sufficient for conviction?
The circumstances shown by the prosecution which tend to show the guilt of the
accused are: Ruling: YES. In the light of his admissions to Prosecutor Zarate and Ray Dean
1. A physical demonstration to which the accused and his counsel did not offer Salvosa and his willingness to be a state witness, Maqueda's participation in the
any objection shows that despite his being handicapped, accused Maqueda could commission of the crime charged was established beyond moral certainty. His
well and easily grip a lead pipe and strike a cement post with such force that it defense of alibi was futile because by his own admission he was not only at the
produced a resounding vibration. It is not farfetched then to conclude that scene of the crime at the time of its commission, he also admitted his
accused Maqueda could have easily beat Mr. Barker to death. participation therein. Even if we disregard his extrajudicial admissions to
Prosecutor Zarate and Salvosa, his guilt was, as correctly ruled by the trial court,
2. His presence within the vicinity of the crime scene right after the incident in the established beyond doubt by circumstantial evidence. The following circumstances
company of accused Salvamante was testified to by Mike Tabayan, the only were duly proved in this case:
prosecution witness who noticed the defective hands of the accused. As they had (1) He and a companion were seen a kilometer away from the Barker house
to ask for directions from the witness in the Tagalog dialect shows that they were an hour after the crime in question was committed there;
strangers to the place. (2) Rene Salvamante, who is still at large, was positively identified by Mrs.
Barker, Norie Dacara, and Julieta Villanueva as one of two persons who
3. Accused Maqueda knows or is familiar with accused Rene Salvamante as they committed the crime;
from the same town. By his own testimony, accused Maqueda has established (3) He and co-accused Rene Salvamante are friends;
that he Salvamante are close friends to the point that they went out together (4) He and Rene Salvamante were together in Guinyangan, Quezon, and
during the Christmas vacation in 1991 and he even accompanied Salvamante in both left the place sometime in September 1991;
selling the black radio cassette recorder. (5) He was arrested in Guinyangan, Quezon, on 4 March 1992; and
(6) He freely and voluntarily offered to be a state witness stating that "he is
4. His Motion to Grant Bail contains this statement that he is willing and the least guilty."
volunteering to be State witness in the above-entitled case, it the accused in
appearing that he is the least guilty along This in effect, supports his extrajudicial Section 4, Rule 133 of the Rules of Court provides that circumstantial evidence is
confession trade to the police at Although he claims that he did not his signature sufficient for conviction if:
would lean his as he was just told that release from detention, this is a flimsy (a) There is more than one circumstance;
excuse which cannot Had he not understood what the motion meant, he could (b) The facts from which the inferences are derived are
have easily asked his sister and brother-in-law what it meant seeing that their proven; and
signatures up already affixed on the motion. (c) the combination of all the circumstances is such as to produce a
conviction beyond reasonable doubt.
5. This time, his admission to Prosecutor Zarate that he was at the Barker house
that fateful morning and his even more damaging admission to Ray Dean Salvosa Or, as jurisprudentially formulated, a judgment of conviction based on
as to what he actually did can be considered as another circumstance to already circumstantial evidence can be upheld only if the circumstances proved constitute
bloster the increasing circumstances against the accused. an unbroken chain which leads to one fair and reasonable conclusion which points
to the accused, to the exclusion of all others, as the guilty person, i.e. the
6. The accused's defense is alibi. As stated in a long Line of cases, alibi is at best circumstances proved must be consistent with each other, consistent with the
a weak defense and easy of fabrication. For alibi to be given credence, it must hypothesis that the accused is guilty, and at the same time inconsistent with any
not only appear that the accused interposing the same was at some other place other hypothesis except that of guilty.
but also that it was physically impossible for him to be at the scene of the crime
at the time of its commission. This defense easily crumbles down as Tayaban The rule is settled that for the defense of alibi to prosper, the requirements of
placed accused Maqueda at vicinity of the crime scene. time and place must be strictly met. It is not enough to prove that the accused
The combination of all these circumstances plus extrajudicial confession produce was somewhere else when the crime was committed, he must demonstrate that it
the needed proof beyond reasonable doubt that indeed accused Maqueda is guilty was physically impossible for him to have been at the scene of the crime at the
of the crime. time of its commission. 34 Through the unrebutted testimony of Mike Tayaban,
which Maqueda does not controvert in his brief, it was positively established that


Maqueda and a companion were seen at 7:00 a.m. of 27 August 1991 at the Department, as this would impair the company's control of purchases and,
waiting shed in Aguyad, Tuba, Benguet, a place barely a kilometer away from the besides she was not authorized to deal directly with the suppliers.
house of the Barkers. It was not then impossible for Maqueda and his companion
to have been at the Barker house at the time the crime was committed. On 29 January 1990, WATEROUS Control Clerk Eugenio Valdez informed Co that
Moreover, Fredisminda Castrence categorically declared that Maqueda started he noticed an irregularity involving Catolico and Yung Shin Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
working in her polvoron factory in Sukat only on 7 October 1991, thereby belying regarding:
his, testimony that he started working on 5 July 1991 and continuously until 27 Purchase Order (P.O.) No. 19045 with YSP Sales Invoice No. 266 representing
August 1991. purchase of ten (10) bottles of Voren tablets at P384.00 per unit. Previews P.O.s
issued to YSP, Inc. showed that the price per bottle is P320.00 while P.O. No.
19045 is priced at P384.00 or an over price of P64.00 per bottle (or total of
12) Zulueta v. Court of Appeals, 253 SCRA 699 P640.00). YSP, Inc. Accounting Department (Ms. Estelita Reyes) confirmed that
Digested by: JS the difference represents refund of jack-up price of ten bottles of Voren tablets
per sales invoice no. 266 as per their check voucher no. 629552 (shown to the
Facts: This is a petition for review against the decision of the CA upholding the undersigned), which was paid to Ms. Catolico through China Bank check no.
decision of rtc. The decision is ordering petitioner to return the documents and 892068 dated November 9, 1989.
papers she took from the drawer of her husband in his clinic. Cecilia went to the
clinic of her husband ransacking the latters drawer and cabinets, and taking The undersigned talked to Ms. Catolico regarding the check but she denied
documents and papers intended by the former to use for legal separation and having received it and that she is unaware of the overprice. However, upon
malpractice against Dr. Martin. Dr. Martin filed a case for the return of the 157 conversation with Ms. Saldana, EDRC Espana Pharmacy Clerk, she confirmed that
documents and for an injunctive relief against petitioner to prevent Cecilia to use the check amounting to P640.00 was actually received by Ms. Catolico. As a
the taken documents as evidence for her case. The RTC decided in favor of Dr. matter of fact, Ms. Catolico even asked Ms. Saldana if she opened the envelope
Martin and the same is upheld by the appellate court. containing the check but Ms. Saldana answered her "talagangganyan, bukas." It
appears that the amount in question (P640.00) had been pocketed by Ms.
Issue: is the CA correct in upholding the decision of the RTC? Catolico.

Ruling: YES. The CA is correct in upholding the decision of RTC. Indeed the Forthwith, in her memorandum dated 37 January 1990, Co asked Catolico to
documents and papers in question are inadmissible in evidence. The explain, within twenty-four hours, her side of the reported irregularity. Catolico
constitutional injunction declaring the privacy of communication and asked for additional time to give her explanation, and she was granted a 48-hour
correspondence [to be] inviolable is no less applicable simply because it is the extension from 1 to 3 February 1990. However, on 2 February 1990, she was
wife (who thinks herself aggrieved by her husbands infidelity) who is the party informed that effective 6 February 1990 to 7 March 1990, she would be placed on
against whom the constitutional provision is to be enforced. The only exception to preventive suspension to protect the interests of the company.
the prohibition in the Constitution is if there is a lawful order [from a] court or
when public safety or order requires otherwise, as prescribed by law. Any In a letter dated 2 February 1990, Catolico requested access to the file containing
violation of this provision renders the evidence obtained inadmissible for any Sales Invoice No. 266 for her to be able to make a satisfactory explanation. In
purpose in any proceeding. said letter she protested Saldaa's invasion of her privacy when Saldaa opened
an envelope addressed to Catolico.

13) Waterous Drug Corp. v. NLRC, 280 SCRA 735 In a letter to Co dated 10 February 1990, Catolico, through her counsel, explained
Digested by: KN that the check she received from YSP was a Christmas gift and not a "refund of
overprice." She also averred that the preventive suspension was ill-motivated, as
Facts: Catolico was hired as a pharmacist by petitioner Waterous Drug it sprang from an earlier incident between her and Co's secretary, Irene Soliven.
Corporation. On 31 July 1989, Catolico received two memorandums, one warning
her not to dispense medicine to employees chargeable to the latter's accounts On 5 March 1990, WATEROUS Supervisor Luzviminda Bautro, issued a
because the same was a prohibited practice and another warning her not to memorandum notifying Catolico of her termination finding her actuation
negotiate with suppliers of medicine without consulting the Purchasing constituting an act of dishonesty detrimental to the interest of the company.


and assisted by a representative if the employee so desires. Ample opportunity
Catolico filed with the Labor Arbiter for unfair labor practice, illegal dismissal and connotes every kind of assistance that management must accord the employee to
illegal suspension. Arbiter Lopez decided that although there is no proof of unfair enable him to prepare adequately for his defense, including legal representation.
labor practice, her dismissal is without just cause and due process. He thus
declared the dismissal and suspension illegal but disallowed reinstatement, as it In the case at bar, although Catolico was given an opportunity to explain her side,
would not be to the best interest of the parties. Accordingly, he awarded no hearing was ever conducted. The Supervisor's memorandum spoke of
separation pay to Catolico computed at one-half month's pay for every year of "evidences in Waterous possession," which were not, however, submitted. What
service; back wages for one year; and the additional sum of P2,000.00 for illegal the "evidences" other than the sales invoice and the check were, only the
suspension "representing 30 days work." Supervisor knew.

Petitioners seasonably appealed from the decision and urged the NLRC to set it It clearly appears then that Catolico's dismissal was based on hearsay
aside because the Labor Arbiter erred in finding that Catolico was denied due information. Estelita Reyes never testified nor executed an affidavit relative to this
process and that there was no just cause to terminate her services. case; thus, we have to reject the statements attributed to her by Valdez. Hearsay
evidence carries no probative value.
NLRC affirmed the findings of the Labor Arbiter on the ground that petitioners
were not able to prove a just cause for Catolico's dismissal from her employment. Besides, it was never shown that petitioners paid for the Voren tablets. MBTC
It found that petitioner's evidence consisted only of the check of P640.00 drawn Check No. 222832 allegedly showing payment of P384 per unit was never
by YSP in favor of complainant, which her co-employee saw when the latter presented in evidence, nor was any receipt from Yung Shin offered by petitioners.
opened the envelope. But, it declared that the check was inadmissible in evidence
pursuant to Sections 2 and 3(1 and 2) of Article III of the Constitution. Moreover, the two purchase orders for Voren tablets presented by petitioners do
not indicate an overcharge. The difference in price may then be attributed to the
Issue: WON the check of P640.00 drawn by YSP is inadmissible in evidence different packaging used in each purchase order.
pursuant to Sections 2 and 3(1 and 2) of Article III of the Constitution
Catolico's dismissal then was obviously grounded on mere suspicion, which in no
Ruling: The Court finds no reason to revise the doctrine laid down in People case can justify an employee's dismissal. Suspicion is not among the valid causes
vs. Marti that the Bill of Rights does not protect citizens from unreasonable provided by the Labor Code for the termination of employment; and even the
searches and seizures perpetrated by private individuals. It is not true, as counsel dismissal of an employee for loss of trust and confidence must rest on substantial
for Catolico claims, that the citizens have no recourse against such assaults. On grounds and not on the employer's arbitrariness, whims, caprices, or suspicion.
the contrary, and as said counsel admits, such an invasion gives rise to both Besides, Catolico was not shown to be a managerial employee, to which class of
criminal and civil liabilities. employees the term "trust and confidence" is restricted.

(Sorry this is the only reason the case gave. Though there is also a manifestation Separation Pay
by the OSG that there was no violation of the right of communication but the Finally, since it has been determined by the Labor Arbiter that Catolico's
reason is that petitioner WATEROUS was justified in opening an envelope from reinstatement would not be to the best interest of the parties, he correctly
one of its regular suppliers as it could assume that the letter was a business awarded separation pay to Catolico. Separation pay in lieu of reinstatement is
communication in which it had an interest. But this obviously cannot be taken as computed at one month's salary for every year of service. 35 In this case,
part of the ruling because it is more of like a comment. Furthermore, its opinion however, Labor Arbiter Lopez computed the separation pay at one-half month's
regarding observance by petitioner of due process is different to that of the salary for every year of service. Catolico did not oppose or raise an objection. As
Supreme Court. It said that the requirement of just cause and due process was such, we will uphold the award of separation pay as fixed by the Labor Arbiter.
complied with because petitioner gave her an opportunity to explain.)

Illegal Dismissal 14) Bon v. People, G.R. No. 152160, 13 January 2004
Concededly, Catolico was denied due process. Procedural due process requires Digested by: IP
that an employee be apprised of the charge against him, given reasonable time to
answer the charge, allowed ample opportunity to be heard and defend himself,


Testimony of what one heard a party say is not necessarily hearsay. It is petitioner. It ruled that the requirements for the sufficiency of the latter type of
admissible in evidence, not to show that the statement was true, but that it was evidence under Section 4 of Rule 133 of ROC were amply satisfied by the
in fact made. If credible, it may form part of the circumstantial evidence following established facts: 1) in the presence of Dangalan, Lascano and
necessary to convict the accused. Natividad Legaspi, petitioner admitted that he had ordered the cutting of the
trees; 2) on February 12, 1990, he and his son Rosalio went to Teresita,
Facts: Petitioner Virgilio Bon and Alejandro Jeniebre, Jr. were charged for demanding that she pay the value of the trees cut; and 3) on February 13, 1990,
violating Section 68 of PD 705, together with Rosalio Bon. In the month of petitioner asked her to forgive him for cutting the trees. The CA held, however,
January or February, 1990, at Barangay Basud, Sorsogon, the accused cut, gather that the same circumstances did not support the conviction of Jeniebre. Aside
and manufacture into lumber 4 narra trees, 1 cuyao-yao tree, and 1 amugis tree, from the testimony of Oscar Narvaez that Jeniebre hired him to cut the trees into
valued at approximately P25,000.00, without the knowledge and consent of the flitches, no other evidence was presented to show the latters participation in the
owner Teresita Dangalan-Mendoza and without having first obtained from proper offense charged. It thus acquitted him.
authorities the necessary permit or license and/or legal supporting documents.
Prosecutions evidence was supplied by Julian Lascano, Oscar Narvaez, Alexander (1) The admissibility of Virgilios purported extrajudicial admission of the
Mendones, Manuel Dangalan, Nestor Labayane and TeresitaDangalan-Mendoza. allegation, testified to by the prosecution witnesses, that he had ordered the
Teresita owns a titled agricultural land under located in Basud, Sorsogon, cutting of the trees; and
administered by Virgilio Bon. She sent her brother Manuel to investigate upon (2) The credibility and the sufficiency of the testimonies of those witnesses
receiving information that trees inside the land were being stolen, cut and sawed
into lumber by her administrator. Manuel sought the help of barangay tanod, Ruling: The Petition has no merit.
Julian Lascano. Together with Julian Lascano, Manuel Dangalan, Ricardo
Valladolid, Natividad Legaspi and Virgilio Bon went to the land and they (1) Admissibility of the Extrajudicial Admission
discovered 6 stumps of trees. On the land, Virgilio Bon admitted ordering the Petitioner contends that Lascanos and Dangalans separate testimonies regarding
cutting and sawing of the trees into lumber. Oscar Narvaez testified that he his alleged extrajudicial admission constitute hearsay evidence and are, therefore,
sawed the trees into six flitches upon instruction of Alejandro Jeniebre, Jr. inadmissible. He also argues that his supposed admission should not have been
admitted, because it had been taken without the assistance of counsel at a time
In their defense, all the three accused took the witness stand and denied the when he was already regarded as a suspect.
accusation. Rosalio Bon, the son of Virgilio denied the charge. He said that he
was in Manila from December 1989 and returned to Sorsogon on March 21, 1990. We disagree. Under Sec 36 of Rule 130 of the ROC, any evidence -- whether
He mentioned that the purpose of filing this case was to eject his father as tenant oral or documentary -- is hearsay if its probative value is not based on the
of the land. Virgilio Bon testified that he is the tenant of the land and was personal knowledge of the witness, but on that of some other person who is not
instituted as such by Teresitas father, but that Teresita wanted to eject him. He on the witness stand. Hence, information that is relayed to the former by the
and Teresita have an agrarian case. Alejandro Jeniebre, Jr., son-in-law of Virgilio latter before it reaches the court is considered hearsay. In the instant case,
Bon, denied that he hired Oscar Narvaez to saw the lumber. Oscar Narvaez Lascano and Dangalan testified that they had heard petitioner admit to having
indicted him of the crime because the former had a grudge against him. ordered the cutting of the trees. Their testimonies cannot be considered as
hearsay for three reasons:
RTC: Convicted Virgilio Bon and Jeniebre for the crime charged. Rosalio Bon was First, they were indisputably present and within hearing distance when
acquitted. he allegedly made the admission. Therefore, they testified to a matter of
fact that had been derived from their own perception.
In their appeal to the CA, petitioner and Jeniebre questioned the prosecution Second, what was sought to be admitted as evidence was the fact that
witnesses credibility and the sufficiency of the evidence proving their guilt. the utterance was actually made by petitioner, not necessarily that the
matters stated therein were true. On this basis, a statement attributed to
CA: Sustained the trial courts assessment of the credibility of Julian Lascano and a person who is not on the witness stand is admissible; it is not covered
Manuel Dangalan. Both testified that petitioner had admitted to having ordered by the hearsay rule. Gotesco Investment Corporation v. Chatto ruled
the cutting of trees. The appellate court held that despite the absence of direct that evidence regarding the making of such statement is not secondary
evidence in this case, the circumstantial evidence was sufficient to convict


but primary, because the statement itself may constitute a fact in issue circumstantial evidence, as long as the circumstances proven constitute
or be circumstantially relevant as to the existence of that fact. an unbroken chain that leads to a fair and reasonable conclusion that
Third, even assuming that the testimonies were hearsay, petitioner is the accused is guilty beyond reasonable doubt.
barred from questioning the admission of Dangalans testimony, because
he failed to object to it at the time it was offered. It has been held that To sustain a conviction based on circumstantial evidence, it is necessary
when parties fail to object to hearsay evidence, they are deemed to have that the following elements concur: 1) there is more than one
waived their right to do so; thus, it may be admitted. circumstance; 2) the facts from which the inferences are derived are
proven; and 3) the combination of all the circumstances is such as to
Moreover, a partys verbal admission that is established through the testimonies produce a conviction beyond reasonable doubt.
of the persons who heard it fall under Sec 26 of Rule 130 of the ROC which
provides that: "[t]he act, declaration or omission of a party as to a relevant fact The circumstances in this case satisfy the above requirements. The RTC
may be given in evidence against him." This rule is based upon the notion that no considered the following proven facts and circumstances: Accused Virgilio Bon,
man would make any declaration against himself, unless it is true. The testimony being the tenant is in actual possession and control over the land, fruit trees and
of petitioner may, therefore, be received in evidence against him. big trees. He has a better chance to cut and saw the lumber. He admitted before
the barangay tanod, Julian Lascano, that he ordered the cutting of the trees and
Regarding his alleged uncounselled admission, suffice it to stress that it was not the sawing thereof by his son-in-law, accused Jeniebre. His admission was
given during a custodial investigation and, certainly, not to police authorities. corroborated by Oscar Narvaez, the one hired by Jeniebre to saw the lumber. His
Custodial investigation has been defined as any questioning initiated by law extrajudicial confession is admissible evidence against him as it was voluntary and
enforcement officers after a person has been taken into custody or otherwise not under custodial investigation.
deprived of freedom of action in any significant way. Constitutional procedures on
custodial investigation do not apply to a spontaneous statement that is not The CA found that the following circumstances sufficiently proved petitioners
elicited through questioning by the authorities, but is given in an ordinary culpability: 1) in the presence of Dangalan, Lascano and Natividad Legaspi,
manner. petitioner admitted that he had ordered the cutting of the trees; 2) on February
12, 1990, he and his son Rosalio went to Teresita, demanding that she pay the
(2) Credibility and Sufficiency of Prosecution Evidence value of the trees cut; and 3) on February 13, 1990, petitioner asked her to
Factual findings and conclusions of the trial court on the credibility of witnesses forgive him for cutting the trees.
deserve to be respected because of its unique advantage of having observed their
demeanor as they testified. Equally established is the rule that factual findings of The records also show that the fact of the alleged cutting, gathering and
the Court of Appeals are conclusive on the parties and carry even more weight manufacture of lumber from the trees was proven by the prosecution through the
when such findings affirm those of the trial court, as in this case. This Court following pieces of documentary evidence: photographs of tree stumps, the
refrains from disturbing the CAs findings, if no glaring errors bordering on a gross investigation report of an officer of the Community Environment and Natural
misapprehension of facts can be gleaned from them. We affirm the lower courts Resources (CENRO) that no permit was secured for the cutting of the trees, and
assessment of the credibility of the prosecution witnesses. the CENROs computation of the value of the timber generated from the felled
trees. This fact, together with the circumstantial evidence, indubitably points to
We now come to the sufficiency of the prosecutions evidence. Punishable under no other conclusion than that petitioner was guilty as charged.
Sec 68 of the Forestry Code are the following acts: (1) cutting, gathering,
collecting or removing timber or other forest products from the places therein
mentioned without any authority; and (b) possessing timber or other forest 15) People v. Ulysses Garcia, G.R. No. 1451761, 30 March 2004
products without the legal documents. Digested by: AD

Petitioner was charged with the first offense. It was thus necessary for the In the case at bar, the accused was convicted of QUALIFIED THEFT -- took, stole,
prosecution to prove the alleged illegal cutting, gathering or manufacture of and carried away punctured currency notes due for shredding in the total amount
lumber from the trees. It is undisputed that no direct evidence was presented. of P194,190.00, belonging to the Central Bank of the Philippines. There was grave
This kind of evidence, however, is not the only matrix from which the trial court abuse of confidence they being at the time employed as Currency Reviewers,
may draw its conclusions and findings of guilt. Conviction may be based on


Driver, Currency Assistant I and Money Counter and as such they had free access of three pieces of perforated P100 bills from Garcia's wallet and the flight
to the property stolen. of Peralta and Datuin Jr. were indicative of the guilt of the accused.

Facts: Pedro Labita of Central Bank went to the Theft and Robbery Section of Issue: WON the following are admissible as evidence?
Western Police District Command (WPDC), and filed a complaint for Qualified 1. Sufficiency of evidence
Theft against Santiago Peralta, Armando Datuin, Jr., Ulysses Garcia, Miguelito de - the three confessions given by Garcia and the three perforated P100
Leon, Librando Flores and Antonio S. Loyola. Pedro Labita submitted to the currency notes confiscated from him
investigating officer at WPDC, punctured currency notes in bills (face value o 2. extrajudicial confessions
Php194,190.00). Was recovered by the BSP Cash Department during its cash - alleged three Sworn Statements of Garcia were obtained without the
counting of punctured currency bills submitted by different banks. The punctured assistance of counsel.
bills were rejected by the BSP money counter machine. Investigation revealed, it
was determined that said rejected currency bills were actually punctured notes Ruling:
already due for shredding which means, theyre no longer intended for circulation.
Before these notes could be shredded, they were stolen from the BSP by the "SECTION 12. (1) Any person under investigation for the commission of an
above-named accused. offense shall have the right to be informed of his right to remain silent and to
have competent and independent counsel, preferably of his own choice. If the
Ulysses Garcia (driver of armoured car of BSP) was apprehended while waiting for person cannot afford the services of counsel, he must be provided with one.
a passenger bus on his way to BSP. Garcia gave three separate statements These rights cannot be waived except in writing and in the presence of counsel.
admitting guilt . He also identified his cohorts, and accomplices. Hence, the other
named accused were called for questioning and later charged with qualiied theft. "(2) No torture, force, violence, threat, intimidation, or any other means which
vitiate the free will shall be used against him. Secret detention places,
Defense Argument: solitary, incomunicado, or other similar forms of detention are prohibited."
- That Garcia was dragged to ride the car; was arrested without a valid In the three extrajudicial confessions, Garcia was not assisted by Atty. Sanchez.
warrant of his arrest. He was handcuffed, hit, blindfolded. Later on, The signature of the latter on those documents was affixed after the word
dragged down the car and up and down the stairs. Suddenly, he felt "SAKSI." That the lawyer did not assist Garcia during the investigation. That he
somebody frisk his pocket. only signed as a witness.
- At a safe house, someone was telling him the name of his co-accused
and if refused, would box him at his chest. His mouth was covered and RTC is erred when it admitted as evidence his sworn statement absence presence
water was poured on the accused. When he cant bear the torture, he of a counsel.
obeyed their instructions. His ears were hit by the palms and as he was
being brought down, he felt somebody returning his personal belongings The right to counsel is to prevent the use of duress and other undue influence in
to his pocket (license, coin purse, and impt papers). His blindfolds were extracting confessions from a suspect in a crime. The basic law requires that any
removed when he reached the police officer. waiver of this right must be made in writing and executed in the presence of a
- "It was actually Mr. Labita, and not accused-appellant Garcia, who gave counsel. Hence, the lawyer's role cannot be reduced to being that of a mere
the answers appearing in accused-appellant Garcia's alleged three sworn witness to the signing of a pre-prepared confession. The accused is entitled to
statements dated November 4, 1992, November 5, 1992 and November effective, vigilant and independent counsel.
6, 1992. It was said that he was asked to sign the sworn statements by
Colonel otherwise, he would be tortured again. A waiver in writing, which the trial court relied upon in the present case, is not
enough. Without the assistance of a counsel, the waiver has no evidentiary
Trial Court: relevance.
- rejected the disclaimer by Garcia of his own confessions, as such
disclaimer was "an eleventh hour concoction to exculpate himself and his PERFORATED CURRENCY
co-accused." The trial court found his allegations of torture and coerced The OSG evades the issue and argues, instead, that appellants waived the
confessions unsupported by evidence. Further, it held that the recovery illegality of their arrest when they entered a plea. He further contends that the


exclusion from the evidence of the three punctured currency bills would not alter guilty for transporting, possessing and delivering prohibited drugs under Article IV
the findings of the trial court. of Republic Act No. 6425 (Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972, as amended by Republic
This is wrong. It was Garcia who was unlawfully arrested. The legality of Act No. 7659), and imposing upon them the penalty of reclusion perpetua.
an arrest can be contested only by the party whose rights have been
impaired thereby. Objection to an unlawful search and seizure is purely Issues:
personal, and third parties cannot avail themselves of it.
1. Whether or not the search conducted by the police officers was incident
NO LAWFUL ARREST to a lawful arrest and there was probable cause to justify the search and
At the time of his arrest, he had not committed, was not committing, and was not seizure of the backpack.
about to commit any crime. Neither was he acting in a manner that would 2. Whether or not there was conspiracy among the appellants.
engender a reasonable ground to suspect that he was committing a crime. .
Nonetheless, not having raised the matter before entering his plea, he is deemed Ruling:
to have waived the illegality of his arrest. Note, however, that this waiver is
limited to the arrest. It does not extend to the search made as an incident thereto 1. Yes. Searches conducted in checkpoints are valid for as long as they are
or to the subsequent seizure of evidence allegedly found during the search. warranted by the exigencies of public order and are conducted in a way
Without a judicial warrant, arrests are allowed only under the following least intrusive to motorists. For as long as the vehicle is neither searched
exceptional circumstances: (1) a search incident to a lawful arrest, (2) seizure of nor its occupants subjected to a body search, and the inspection of the
evidence in plain view, (3) search of a moving motor vehicle, (4) customs search, vehicle is limited to a visual search, said routine checks cannot be
(5) stop and frisk situations, and (6) consented search. regarded as violative of an individuals right against unreasonable
search. Checkpoints are not illegal per se. Thus, under exceptional
Where the arrest was incipiently illegal, it follows that the subsequent search was circumstances, as where the survival of organized government is on the
similarly illegal. Any evidence obtained in violation of the constitutional provision balance, or where the lives and safety of the people are in grave peril,
is legally inadmissible in evidence under the exclusionary rule. In the present checkpoints may be allowed and installed by the government.
case, the perforated P100 currency notes were obtained as a result of a search
made without a warrant subsequent to an unlawful arrest; hence, they are Warrantless search of the personal effects of an accused has been
inadmissible in evidence. declared by this Court as valid, because of existence of probable cause,
where the smell of marijuana emanated from a plastic bag owned by the
accused, or where the accused was acting suspiciously, and attempted
to flee. In light then of appellants speeding away after noticing the
checkpoint and even after having been flagged down by police officers,
16) People v. Vinecario, G.R. No. 141137, 20 January 2004 their suspicious and nervous gestures when interrogated on the contents
Digested by: KR of the backpack which they passed to one another, and the reply of
Vinecario, when asked why he and his co-appellants sped away from the
Facts: On the night of April 10, 1995, as about fifteen police officers were checkpoint, that he was a member of the Philippine Army, apparently in
manning a checkpoint at Ulas, Davao City pursuant to COMELEC Resolution No. an attempt to dissuade the policemen from proceeding with their
2735, otherwise known as the COMELEC gun ban, a motorcycle with three men inspection, there existed probable cause to justify a reasonable belief on
on board namely appellant Victor Vinecario (Vinecario), Arnold Roble (Roble) the part of the law enforcers that appellants were offenders of the law
Gerlyn Wates (Wates) sped past of the police officers. When they were ordered to or that the contents of the backpack were instruments of some offense.
return to the checkpoint, a police officer asked what the backpack contains which
the appellants answered that it was only a mat. The police officers suspected that 2. Yes. Conspiracy exists when two or more persons come to an agreement
it was a bomb and when appellant opened the bag it turns out that its contents concerning the commission of a crime and decide to commit it. Where
were marijuana. The three were then brought to the police station and later to the acts of the accused collectively and individually demonstrate the
Camp Catitipan and there they were investigated by police officials without the existence of a common design towards the accomplishment of the same
assistance of counsel, following which they were made to sign some documents unlawful purpose, conspiracy is evident, and all the perpetrators will be
which they were not allowed to read. The Regional Trial Court rendered them liable as principals. To exempt himself from criminal liability, the


conspirator must have performed an overt act to dissociate or detach Digested by: MC
himself from the unlawful plan to commit the crime.
Facts: This case is for automatic review of the judgment of the RTC of Anitpolo
In People v. Concepcion, this Court held: City finding Guillermo guilty of murder and sentencing him to suffer death
Proof of agreement need not rest on direct evidence as the same may penalty. Guillermo was accused of murdering his employer, Victor Francisco
be inferred from the conduct of the parties indicating a common Keyser, the owner and manager of Keyser Plastic Manufacturing Corp. On March
understanding among them with respect to the commission of the 22, 1998, prosecution witness Romualdo Campos, a security guard assigned to
offense. It is not necessary to show that two or more persons met Greatmore was on duty. At around 8:00 a.m., he saw appellant Eric G. Guillermo
together and entered into an explicit agreement setting out the details of enter the premises of Keyser Plastics. Campos ignored Guillermo, as he knew him
an unlawful scheme or the details by which an illegal objective is to be to be one of the trusted employees of Keyser Plastics. An hour later, he saw
carried out. It may be deduced from the mode and manner in which the Victor F. Keyser arrive. Keyser checked the pump motor of the deep well, which
offense was perpetrated or inferred from the acts of the accused was located in the area of Greatmore, after which he also went inside the part of
evincing a joint or common purpose and design, concerted action and the building occupied by Keyser Plastics.[9] Campos paid scant attention to
community of interest. Keyser. Later, at around 10:00 a.m., Campos was making some entries in his
logbook, when he heard some loud noises (kalabugan) coming from the Keyser
In the case at bar, as established by the evidence, appellants connived Plastics area. He stopped to listen, but thinking that the noise was coming from
in unlawfully transporting the subject marijuana. Roble, who was driving the machines used to make plastics, he did not pay much attention to the sound.
the motorcycle at Ulas, did not stop but instead sped away upon seeing At around noontime, Campos was suddenly interrupted in the performance of his
the checkpoint in a clear attempt to avoid inspection by the police duties when he saw appellant Guillermo look through one of the holes in the
officers. When asked as to the contents of the backpack by SPO1 Goc- dividing wall. According to Campos, appellant calmly told him that he had killed
ong, appellants passed the same to one another, indicating that they Victor Keyser and needed Campos assistance to help him carry the corpse to the
knew its contents. These circumstances manifest appellants concerted garbage dump where he could burn it. Shocked by this revelation, Campos
efforts and cooperation towards the attainment of their criminal immediately dashed off to telephone the police. Guillermo claimed being
objective. maltreated by Keyser which was his motive for killing the latter. Keysers death
shocked the nation. Appellant Guillermo, who was then in police custody, was
In fine, appellants defenses fail in light of their clearly proven act of interviewed on separate occasions by two TV reporters, namely: Augusto Gus
delivering or transporting marijuana. Abelgas of ABS-CBN News and Kara David of GMA Channel 7. Both interviews
were subsequently broadcast nationwide. Appellant admitted to David that he
The evidence shows that accused-appellant was apprehended in the act committed the crime and never gave it second thought. At the trial, appellant
of delivering or transporting illegal drugs. Transport as used under the Guillermos defense consisted of outright denial. He alleged he was a victim of
Dangerous Drugs Act is defined to mean: to carry or convey from one police frame-up. He testified that he had been an employee of Keyser for more
place to another. When accused-appellant used his vehicle to convey the than a year prior to the latters death. On the date of the incident, he was all
package containing marijuana to an unknown destination, his act was alone at the Keyser Plastics factory compound as a stay-in employee. Other
part of the process of transporting the said prohibited substance. employees have left allegedly due to Keysers maltreatment of them.
Inherent in the crime of transporting the prohibited drug is the use of a
motor vehicle. The very act of transporting a prohibited drug, like in the Appellant contends that his conviction was based on inadmissible evidence. He
instant case, is a malum prohibitum since it is punished as an offense points out that there is no clear showing that he was informed of his
under a special law. The mere commission of the act constitutes the constitutional rights nor was he made to understand the same by the police
offense and is sufficient to validly charge and convict an individual investigators. In fact, he says, he was only made to read said rights in printed
committing the act, regardless of criminal intent. Since the appellant was form posed on the wall at the police precinct. He was not provided with the
caught transporting marijuana, the crime being mala prohibita, accused- services of counsel during the custodial investigation, as admitted by SPO1 Reyes.
appellants intent, motive, or knowledge, thereof need not be shown. In view of no showing on record that he had waived his constitutional rights,
appellant argues that any evidence gathered from him, including his alleged
confession, must be deemed inadmissible.
17) People v. Eric Guillermo, G.R. No. 147786, 20 January 2004


Issue: If it is a Sunday and no lawyer is available, can this be waived? Nestor Galvez, PO3 Bienvenido Sagum and Chief Forensic Chemist Daisy
Panganiban-Babor. Meanwhile, the defense presented the testimonies of the
Ruling: No. While the investigating officer was aware of the appellants right to appellant and Reynaldo Nunag, purok chairman of Sitio Makabakle.
be represented by counsel, the officer exerted no effort to provide him with one
on the flimsy excuse that it was a Sunday. Despite the absence of counsel, the According to the police officers who are members of the Criminal Detection and
officer proceeded with said investigation. Moreover, the record is bare of any Intelligence Group based at Diamond Subdivision, Balibago, Angeles City, they
showing that appellant had waived his constitutional rights in writing and in the have received an information from an informant that a woman will be
presence of counsel. As well said in People v. Dano, even if the admission or transporting bulks of marijuana leaves from Mountain Province to Sapang Biabas,
confession of an accused is gospel truth, if it was made without the assistance of Mabalacat, Pampanga.
counsel, it is inadmissible in evidence regardless of the absence of coercion or
even if it had been voluntarily given. At around 5:00 oclock in the morning of August 13, 1999, their informant went to
their headquarters and informed them that their suspect is due to arrive at
Under Article III of the Constitution, a confession to be admissible must satisfy Sapang Biabas, Mabalacat. So the police officers went to Sapang Biabas, and
the following requisites: (a) the confession must be voluntary; (b) the confession when the informant pointed at the particular woman who was carrying two sacks
must be made with the assistance of competent and independent counsel; (c) the with camote fruits on top, they have proceeded to the woman. When the officers
confession must be express; and (d) the confession must be in writing. The right requested the woman to put out the contents of the sacks, they have discovered
of a person under interrogation to be informed implies a correlative obligation on that it contained some camote fruits and 15 brick-like substance wrapped in
the part of the police investigator to explain and contemplates an effective brown paper and masking tape. Since one of the bricks was damaged on the side,
communication that results in an understanding of what is conveyed. Absent that they have seen that the contents were dried marijuana leaves. Hence, they
understanding, there is a denial of the right to be informed, as it cannot be said apprehended the woman and confiscated the contents of the sack. After
that the person has been truly informed of his rights. Ceremonial shortcuts in the examination, it was confirmed that the contents were indeed, marijuana.
communication of abstract constitutional principles ought not be allowed for it
diminishes the liberty of the person facing custodial investigation. However, the defense has another version of the facts. Lita Ayangao claimed that
she only went to Sapang Biabas due to the request of Magda Dumpao to help the
Be that as it may, however, the inadmissibility of the appellants confession to latter over some transactions regarding Dumpaos sold house. Allegedly, Ayangao
SPO1 Reyes at the Antipolo PNP Station as evidence does not necessarily lead to was only at the place to talk to Alarcon who was acting as the Dumpaos agent
his acquittal. For constitutional safeguards on custodial investigation (known, also and when she was already sleeping at Alarcons house, she was apprehended by
as the Miranda principles) do not apply to spontaneous statements, or those not the police officers and brought inside a car. While she was inside the car, she saw
elicited through questioning by law enforcement authorities but given in an a sack and a carton box. Consequently, Reynaldo Nunag, the purok chariman,
ordinary manner whereby the appellant verbally admits to having committed the testified that he did not notice anything unusual incident nor he saw the arrest of
offense. The rights enumerated in the Constitution, Article III, Section 12, are the accused.
meant to preclude the slightest use of the States coercive power as would lead an
accused to admit something false. But it is not intended to prevent him from The trial court found the prosecutions version to be credible, held that accused
freely and voluntarily admitting the truth outside the sphere of such power. was guilty of violating Section 4 of Article II of R.A. 6425 as amended by R.A.
7659 by transporting fourteen kilograms and seventy five hundredths (14.75) of a
The facts in this case clearly show that appellant admitted the commission of the kilogram of marijuana, a prohibited drug, without authority and sentenced her to
crime not just to the police but also to private individuals (media and the security suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua. Accused Lita Ayangao-Batong-og (sic) is
guard). Thus, the RTC decision is affirmed. further ordered to pay a fine of five hundred thousand (P500,000.00) pesos.

Hence, the appeal.

18) People v. Lita Ayangao, G.R. No. 142356, 14 April 2004
Digested by: CT Issues:
1. WON the lower court erred in giving full credence to the testimonies of
Facts: Appellant Lita Ayangao was charged with transporting 14.75 kilograms of prosecutions witnesses.
marijuana in an information. The prosecution presented three witnesses: PO3


2. WON the lower court erred in not considering favorably the defense of alibi as Validity of Arrest- The Court finds that the arrest was lawful as appellant was
a ground for the acquittal of defendant-appellant. actually committing a crime when she was arrested transporting marijuana, are
act prohibited by law. Since a lawful arrest was made, the resulting warrantless
Ruling: search on appellant was also valid as the legitimate warrantless arrest authorized
1. No, this Court finds that the prosecution was able to discharge its burden of the arresting police officers to validly search and seize from the offender (1) any
proving the appellants guilt beyond reasonable doubt. The decision of the trial dangerous weapons and (2) the things which may be used as proof of the
court was supported by the evidence on record. commission of the offense.

Regarding the credibility of witnesses, this Court has ruled time and again that
this is a matter best assessed by the trial court judge since he has the opportunity 19) People v. Laguio, Jr., G.R. No. 128587, 16 March 2007
to observe the witnesses demeanor and deportment on the stand.8 Besides, in Digested by: RP
this case, the inconsistencies criticized by the appellant were minor ones involving
negligible details which did not negate the truth of the witnesses testimonies nor FACTS: Police operatives of the Public Assistance and Reaction Against Crime of
detract from their credibility. the DILG namely arrested SPO2 Vergel de Dios, Rogelio Anoble and a certain
Arellano, for unlawful possession of shabu. In the course of the investigation of
The judgment call of the trial court on which of the two conflicting testimonies to the three arrested persons, Redentor Teck, alias Frank, and Joseph Junio were
believe should prevail because it involved the assessment of the credibility of identified as the source of the drug. An entrapment operaton was conducted.
witnesses. Thus, without proof that some facts or circumstances of weight or Redentor Teck and Joseph Junio were arrested while they were about to hand
substance having a bearing on the result of the case have been overlooked, over another bag of shabu to SPO2 De Dios and company. They denied the
misunderstood or misapplied, this Court will not overturn such finding as the allegations and claimed that they were talent managers and gymnast instructors.
judge was in a better position to observe the demeanor of the two witnesses. Redentor Teck and Joseph Junio did not disclose their source of shabu but
admitted that they were working for Wang. They also disclosed that they knew of
a scheduled delivery of shabu early the following morning of 17 May 1996, and
2. No, the trial court did not err in considering favorably the defense of alibi as a that their employer (Wang) could be found at the Maria Orosa Apartment in
ground for the acquittal of defendant-appellant. Malate, Manila. The police operatives decided to look for Wang to shed light on
the illegal drug activities of Redentor Teck and Joseph Junio. Police Inspector
Appellants alibi could not prevail over the overwhelming evidence presented by Cielito Coronel and his men then proceeded to Maria Orosa Apartment and placed
the prosecution. Alibi as a defense is inherently weak and for it to serve as basis the same under surveillance.
for an acquittal, the accused must establish by clear and convincing evidence:
(a) his presence at another place at the time of the perpetration of the offense Prosecution witness Police Inspector Cielito Coronel testified that Wang, who was
and described to the operatives by Teck, came out of the apartment and walked
(b) the physical impossibility to be at the scene of the crime. towards a parked BMW car. On nearing the car, he together with Captain
Margallo and two other police officers approached Wang, introduced themselves
The appellant failed to meet these two requirements. Jaime Alarcons house to him as police officers, asked his name and, upon hearing that he was Lawrence
where appellant claimed to be sleeping at the time of her arrest, was only 10 Wang, immediately frisked him and asked him to open the back compartment of
meters from the tricycle terminal where she was arrested by the officers. Thus, the BMW car. When frisked, there was found inside the front right pocket of
the trial court was correct in ruling that the alibi of appellant was not enough to Wang and confiscated from him an unlicensed gun. The BMW contains shabu and
acquit her of the charges. various unlicensed guns and ammunitions. Then and there, Wang resisted the
warrantless arrest and search.
Miranda rights- Any objection to the arrest or acquisition of jurisdiction over the On 6 December 1996, the prosecution rested its case and upon motion, accused
person of the accused must be made before he enters his plea, otherwise the Wang was granted 25 days from said date within which to file his intended
objection is deemed waived. Demurrer to Evidence. On 19 December 1996, the prosecution filed a
Manifestation to the effect that it had rested its case only in so far as the charge


for Violation of the Dangerous Drugs Act is concerned. (3 charges were filed by his friend, David Lee. He was not committing any visible offense then.
against him and RTC acquitted Wang on all charges) Therefore, there can be no valid warrantless arrest in flagrante delicto under
paragraph (a) of Section 5. It is settled that "reliable information" alone, absent
Wang filed his undated Demurrer to Evidence, praying for his acquittal and the any overt act indicative of a felonious enterprise in the presence and within the
dismissal of the three cases against him for lack of a valid arrest and search view of the arresting officers, is not sufficient to constitute probable cause that
warrants and the inadmissibility of the prosecutions evidence against him. would justify an in flagrante delicto arrest.
Considering that the prosecution has not yet filed its Opposition to the demurrer,
Wang filed an Amplification to his Demurrer of Evidence. The prosecution filed its Neither may the warrantless arrest be justified under paragraph (b) of Section 5.
Opposition alleging that the warrantless search was legal as an incident to the What is clearly established from the testimonies of the arresting officers is that
lawful arrest. Trial court granted Wang's demurrer to evidence and acquitted him. Wang was arrested mainly on the information that he was the employer of
Redentor Teck and Joseph Junio who were previously arrested and charged for
ISSUE: whether there was lawful arrest, search and seizure by the police illegal transport of shabu. Teck and Junio did not even categorically identify Wang
operatives in this case despite the absence of a warrant of arrest and/or a search to be their source of the shabu they were caught with in flagrante delicto. Upon
warrant. the duo's declaration that there will be a delivery of shabu on the early morning
of the following day, May 17, which is only a few hours thereafter, and that Wang
RULING: NO. The pertinent provisions of Rule 113 of the Rules on Criminal may be found in Maria Orosa Apartment along Maria Orosa Street, the arresting
Procedure on warrantless arrest provide: officers conducted "surveillance" operation in front of said apartment, hoping to
Sec. 5. Arrest without warrant; when lawful. A peace find a person which will match the description of one Lawrence Wang, the
officer or a private person may, without a warrant, arrest a employer of Teck and Junio. These circumstances do not sufficiently establish the
person: existence of probable cause based on personal knowledge as required in
a) When, in his presence, the person to be arrested has paragraph (b) of Section 5.
committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit
an offense; The inevitable conclusion, as correctly made by the trial court, is that the
b) When an offense has just been committed, and he has warrantless arrest was illegal. Ipso jure, the warrantless search incidental to the
probable cause to believe based on personal knowledge of illegal arrest is likewise unlawful.
facts or circumstances that the person to be arrested has
committed it; and The People's contention that Wang waived his right against unreasonable search
c) When the person to be arrested is a prisoner who has and seizure has no factual basis. While we agree in principle that consent will
escaped from a penal establishment or place where he is validate an otherwise illegal search, however, based on the evidence on record,
serving final judgment or is temporarily confined while his Wang resisted his arrest and the search on his person and belongings. The
case is pending, or has escaped while being transferred from implied acquiescence to the search, if there was any, could not have been more
one confinement to another. than mere passive conformity given under intimidating or coercive circumstances
and is thus considered no consent at all within the purview of the constitutional
For a warrantless arrest of an accused caught in flagrante delicto under guarantee. Moreover, the continuing objection to the validity of the warrantless
paragraph (a) of Section 5 to be valid, two requisites must concur: (1) the person arrest made of record during the arraignment bolsters Wang's claim that he
to be arrested must execute an overt act indicating that he has just committed, is resisted the warrantless arrest and search.
actually committing, or is attempting to commit a crime; and (2) such overt act is
done in the presence or within the view of the arresting officer.

The facts and circumstances surrounding the present case did not manifest any
suspicious behavior on the part of private respondent Lawrence Wang that would
reasonably invite the attention of the police. He was merely walking from the
Maria Orosa Apartment and was about to enter the parked BMW car when the
police operatives arrested him, frisked and searched his person and commanded
him to open the compartment of the car, which was later on found to be owned