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JURISDICTION OF THE MTC, RTC AND SANDIGANBAYAN


IN CRIMINAL CASES

A) Jurisdiction of Metropolitan Trial Courts, Municipal Trial


Courts and Municipal Circuit Trial Courts in criminal cases.

The MTC shall exercise exclusive original jurisdiction over criminal


actions involving:

1) Violations of city or municipal ordinances committed


within their respective territorial jurisdiction; (Paragraph 1 of Sec.
32, B. P. Blng. 129 as amended by R.A, No. 7691)

2) Offenses punishable with imprisonment of not more than


six (6) years regardless of fine, accessory penalties or civil
liability; (Paragraph 2 of Sec. 32, B. P. Blng. 129 as amended by
R.A, No. 7691)

EXCEPTIONS to paragraph 2 of Section 32 of BP 129:

a) Libel by means of writings or other similar means


which is punishable by imprisonment of not more than six (6)
years but, by express provision of Article 355 of the RPC, is
placed within the exclusive original jurisdiction of the RTC;

b) Some forms of direct bribery under Article 210 of the


RPC which are punishable by imprisonment of not more than six
(6) years) but, by express provision of Sec. 4(a) of P. D. No. 1606
as amended, are placed within the exclusive jurisdiction of the
Sandiganbayan;

c) Indirect bribery which is punishable by imprisonment


of less than six (6) years under Article 211 of the RPC but, by
express provision of Sec. 4(a) of P. D. No. 1606 as amended, is
placed within the exclusive original jurisdiction of the
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Sandiganbayan.

3) Offenses where the penalty prescribed is only a fine of not


more than P4,000.00. (SC Administrative Circular 09-94, June 14,
1994)

4) Offenses involving damage to property through criminal


negligence regardless of amount of fine which is the only
imposable penalty under the third paragraph of Article 365 of the
RPC. (Paragraph 2 of Sec. 32, B. P. Blng. 129 as amended by R.A,
No. 7691)

***

B) Jurisdiction of the Regional Trial Court in criminal cases:

I) The RTC shall exercise exclusive original jurisdiction over:

1) Criminal cases not within the exclusive jurisdiction of any court,


tribunal or body;

2) Criminal cases designated by the SC under B. P. 129, Sec. 23;

3) Criminal cases placed within the exclusive original jurisdiction of


the RTC regardless of the imposable penalty by express provision of
specific laws such as:

a) Libel by means of writings or other similar means which is


punishable imprisonment of not more than six (6) years under Article 355
of the RPC;

b) Violations of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002


under Sec. 90 thereof;

c) Violations of intellectual property rights under A. M. No. 03-03-


03-SC;
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d) Violations of Anti-Money Laundering Act except those


committed by public officers or private persons in conspiracy with public
officers.

e) Violations of R. A. No. 6657 also known as the Comprehensive


Agrarian Reform Law of 1988

II) The RTC shall exercise appellate jurisdiction over all criminal
cases decided by the MTC within its territorial jurisdiction (B. P. 129, Sec.
22);

***

C) Jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan under P. D. No. 1606 as


amended by R.A. No. 7975 and R.A. No. 8249.

(I) The Sandiganbayan shall exercise exclusive original


jurisdiction over criminal actions where the requisites stated in (A) and
(B) concur:

A) One or more of the persons charged are any of the following:

1) Officials of the executive branch occupying the positions


classified as Grade 27 and higher whether in a permanent, acting or
interim capacity, at the time of the commission of the offense,
specifically including:

(a) Provincial governors, vice-governors, members of the


sangguniang panlalawigan, and provincial treasurers, assessors, engineers,
and other provincial department heads;

(b) City mayors, vice-mayors, members of the sangguniang


panlungsod, city treasurer, assessors, engineers, and other city department
heads;
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(c) Officials of the diplomatic service occupying the position of


consul and higher;

(d) Philippine army and air force colonels, naval captains, and all
officers of higher rank;

(e) Officers of the Philippine National Police while occupying the


position of provincial director and those holding the rank of senior
superintendent or higher;

(f) City and provincial prosecutors and their assistants, and officials
and prosecutors in the Office of the Ombudsman and special prosecutor;

(g) Presidents, directors or trustees, or managers of government-


owned or controlled corporations, state universities or educational
institutions or foundations;

(NOTE: Some of the public officers listed under subparagraphs a


to g occupy positions below Salary Grade 27 but by express provision
of law are placed under the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan.)

2) Members of Congress and officials thereof with Salary Grade


27;

3) Members of the judiciary without prejudice to the provisions of


the Constitution;

4) Chairmen and members of Constitutional Commissions,


without prejudice to the provisions of the Constitution; and

5) All other national and local officials with Salary Grade 27 and
higher.

6) Private individuals provided one or more of the accused are


public officers with Salary Grade 27 or are listed under Section 4 of P. D.
No.1606 as amended.

B) The offense charged is any of the following:


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1) Violations of Republic Act No. 3019, as amended, otherwise


known as the Anti-Graft and Corruption Practices Act, and Republic Act
No. 1379, and Chapter II, Section 2, Title VII of the Revised Penal Code;

2) Any offense (even those not included in the preceding paragraph)


committed by public officials and employees with Salary Grade 27 or
higher or those with Salary Grade below 27 but mentioned in Section 4
of PD No. 1606 as amended provided the offense was committed by them
in relation to their office; and

3) Cases filed pursuant to or in connection with Executive Order


Nos. 1, 2, 14 and 14-A, issued in 1986.

* In cases where the offense charged is one of those


mentioned in Section 4 of PD 1606 as amended but none of the
accused occupies a position classified as Salary Grade 27 or higher
or none of the accused is among those listed in Section 4 of P. D. No.
1606 as amended, exclusive original jurisdiction thereof shall be
vested in the RTC or MTC pursuant to its respective jurisdiction
(depending on the imposable penalty whether imprisonment or only
fine) as provided in B. P. Blg. 129, as amended.

(II) The Sandiganbayan shall exercise exclusive appellate jurisdic-


tion over judgments rendered by the RTC in cases mentioned in the
immediately preceding paragraph whether in the exercise of its original
jurisdiction or appellate jurisdiction.

* The Sandiganbayan shall exercise exclusive original


jurisdiction over petitions for the issuance of the writs of mandamus,
prohibition, certiorari, habeas corpus, injunctions, and other ancillary
writs and processes in aid of its appellate jurisdiction and over
petitions of similar nature, including quo warranto, arising or that
may arise in cases filed or which may be filed under Executive Order
Nos. 1, 2, 14 and 14-A, issued in 1986: Provided, That the jurisdiction
over these petitions shall not be exclusive of the Supreme Court.
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