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A close scrutiny of the records of this case reveals that the evidence presented by

TIJING vs. CA
Bienvenida is sufficient to establish that John Thomas Lopez is actually her missing
(facial similarity to prove kinship) son, Edgardo Tijing, Jr.
Petitioners EDGARDO A. TIJING and BIENVENIDA R. TIJING are husband XXX
and wife. They have six children. The youngest is Edgardo Tijing, Jr., who was born on Fourth, the trial court observed several times that when the child and Bienvenida
April 27, 1989, at the clinic of midwife and registered nurse Lourdes Vasquez in Sta. were both in court, the two had strong similarities in their faces, eyes, eyebrows and
Ana, Manila. Petitioner Bienvenida served as the laundrywoman of private respondent head shapes. Resemblance between a minor and his alleged parent is competent and
ANGELITA DIAMANTE.
material evidence to establish parentage. [18] Needless to stress, the trial courts
According to Bienvenida in August 1989, Angelita went to her house to fetch her conclusion should be given high respect, it having had the opportunity to observe the
for an urgent laundry job. Since Bienvenida was on her way to do some marketing, she physical appearances of the minor and petitioner concerned.
asked Angelita to wait until she returned. She also left her four-month old son, Edgardo, Xxx
Jr., under the care of Angelita as she usually let Angelita take care of the child while
Bienvenida was doing laundry. (discussion on DNA)
When Bienvenida returned from the market, Angelita and Edgardo, Jr., were A final note. Parentage will still be resolved using conventional methods unless
gone. Bienvenida forthwith proceeded to Angelitas house, but did not find them we adopt the modern and scientific ways available. Fortunately, we have now the
there. Angelitas maid told Bienvenida that her employer went out for a stroll and told facility and expertise in using DNA test[19] for identification and parentage testing. The
Bienvenida to come back later. She returned to Angelitas house after three days, only University of the Philippines Natural Science Research Institute (UP-NSRI) DNA
to discover that Angelita had moved to another place. Bienvenida then complained to Analysis Laboratory has now the capability to conduct DNA typing using short tandem
her barangay chairman and also to the police. repeat (STR) analysis. The analysis is based on the fact that the DNA of a child/person
has two (2) copies, one copy from the mother and the other from the father. The DNA
Bienvenida and her husband looked for their missing son in other from the mother, the alleged father and child are analyzed to establish parentage. [20] Of
places. Notwithstanding their serious efforts, they saw no traces of his whereabouts. course, being a novel scientific technique, the use of DNA test as evidence is still open
Four years later or in October 1993, Bienvenida read in a tabloid about the death to challenge.[21] Eventually, as the appropriate case comes, courts should not hesitate
of Tomas Lopez, allegedly the common-law husband of Angelita, and whose remains to rule on the admissibility of DNA evidence. For it was said, that courts should apply
were lying in state in Hagonoy, Bulacan. Bienvenida went to Hagonoy, Bulacan, where the results of science when competently obtained in aid of situations presented, since
she allegedly saw her son Edgardo, Jr., for the first time after four years. She claims to reject said result is to deny progress.[22] Though it is not necessary in this case to
that the boy, who was pointed out to her by Benjamin Lopez, a brother of the late resort to DNA testing, in future it would be useful to all concerned in the prompt
Tomas Lopez, was already named John Thomas Lopez. [1] She avers that Angelita resolution of parentage and identity issues.
refused to return to her the boy despite her demand to do so.
Bienvenida and Edgardo filed their petition for habeas corpus with the trial court in
order to recover their son. To substantiate their petition, petitioners presented two PP v. RONNIE RULLEPA y GUINTO
witnesses. The first witness, Vasquez, testified that she assisted in the delivery of one (appearance to establish age)
Edgardo Tijing, Jr. on April 27, 1989. The second witness, Benjamin Lopez, declared
that his brother, the late Tomas Lopez, could not have possibly fathered John Thomas Ronnie Rullepa y Guinto (Rullepa), a houseboy, was charged and found guilty
Lopez as the latter was sterile with Rape of Cyra May (then only three and a half years old) before (RTC).

For her part, Angelita claimed that she is the natural mother of the child. She The crime committed by accused-appellant is statutory rape.
asserts that at age 42, she gave birth to John Thomas Lopez on April 27, 1989, The two elements of statutory rape are (1) that the accused had carnal knowledge
RTC: concluded that since Angelita and her common-law husband could not of a woman, and (2) that the woman is below twelve years of age.
have children, the alleged birth of John Thomas Lopez is an impossibility. The trial court The crime of rape shall be punished by reclusion perpetua.
also held that the minor and Bienvenida showed strong facial similarity. Accordingly, it
ruled that Edgardo Tijing, Jr., and John Thomas Lopez are one and the same person Furthermore, the victims age may constitute a qualifying circumstance,
who is the natural child of petitioners. warranting the imposition of the death sentence. The same Article states:
CA: Reversed The death penalty shall also be imposed if the crime of rape is committed when
the victim is x x x a child below seven (7) years old.
ISSUE: Whether or not kinship may be proven be facial similarity. YES
The victim and her mother testified that she was only three years old at the time of
HELD: (Edgardo is the son of bienvenida) the rape. However, the prosecution did not offer the victims certificate of live birth or
similar authentic documents in evidence.
Finding for the prosecution, the RTC rendered judgment finding Rullepa guilty Whether the victim was below seven years old, however, is another matter. Here,
beyond reasonable doubt of rape and accordingly sentenced him to death. The case reasonable doubt exists. A mature three and a half-year old can easily be mistaken for
was placed for automatic review of the Supreme Court an underdeveloped seven-year old. The appearance of the victim, as object evidence,
cannot be accorded much weight and, following Pruna, the testimony of the mother is,
ISSUE: Whether or not the trial court erred in imposing the supreme penalty of death
by itself, insufficient.
upon Rullepa when the age of the victim was only evidenced by appearance. NO
As it has not been established with moral certainty that Cyra May was below
HELD: A persons appearance, where relevant, is admissible as object evidence, the
seven years old at the time of the commission of the offense, accused-appellant cannot
same being addressed to the senses of the court. As to the weight to accord such be sentenced to suffer the death penalty. Only the penalty of reclusion perpetua can be
appearance, especially in rape cases, the Court in People v. Pruna laid down the imposed upon him.
guideline.
A persons appearance, as evidence of age (for example, of infancy, or of being
under the age of consent to intercourse), is usually regarded as relevant; and, if so, People vs Ulzoron
the tribunal may properly observe the person brought before it.
(Absence of marks of physical Violence)
There can be no question, therefore, as to the admissibility of a persons
appearance in determining his or her age. As to the weight to accord such appearance, FACTS: Samuel Ulzoron was charged with rape with the use of a deadly weapon.
especially in rape cases, Pruna laid down guideline no. 3, which is again reproduced (Samuel grabbed her wrists and locked them with one hand behind her back
hereunder: with the other drawing his bolo and pointing it at her neck. She struggled to free herself
3. If the certificate of live birth or authentic document is shown to have been lost or from his hold but was so intimidated with the bolo that she could not shout for help; she
destroyed or otherwise unavailable, the testimony, if clear and credible, of the victims lost her strength eventually. After she weakened, he dragged her some forty (40)
mother or a member of the family either by affinity or consanguinity who is qualified to meters away to the bushes and tall grasses. He forced her to lie down; then he
testify on matters respecting pedigree such as the exact age or date of birth of the mounted her. He laid his bolo beside him, pinned her arms with one hand, and with the
offended party pursuant to Section 40, Rule 130 of the Rules on Evidence shall be other, loosened the buttons of her dress. Emily could only struggle in vain until he
sufficient under the following circumstances: ripped off her dress and panties. He opened the zipper of his pants and then inserted
his penis to her vagina. He copulated with her for about fifteen (15) minutes. She did
a. If the victim is alleged to be below 3 years of age and what is sought to be proved is everything to disengage herself from the sexual imbroglio but her efforts proved no
that she is less than 7 years old; match to his strength.)
b. If the victim is alleged to be below 7 years of age and what is sought to be proved is On the strength of the testimony of the complaining witness Emily Gabo, the
that she is less than 12 years old; trial court convicted the accused. It found the latters testimony straightforward and
c. If the victim is alleged to be below 12 years of age and what is sought to be proved is credible.
that she is less than 18 years old. Appellant faults the trial court for convicting him on the basis of his defense.
Under the above guideline, the testimony of a relative with respect to the age of He argues that the undisputed facts and circumstances made it more likely that Emily
the victim is sufficient to constitute proof beyond reasonable doubt in cases (a), (b) and was involved in an adulterous relationship with him.
(c) above. In such cases, the disparity between the allegation and the proof of age is so He claims, for instance, that there was absolutely nothing to support the
great that the court can easily determine from the appearance of the victim the veracity victims claim of struggle, and that while he allegedly dragged her forty (40) meters
of the testimony. The appearance corroborates the relatives testimony. away before assaulting her sexually, the examining physician could not conclude that
As the alleged age approaches the age sought to be proved, the persons physical force was actually inflicted since she did not sustain any physical injuries.
appearance, as object evidence of her age, loses probative value. Doubt as to her true ISSUE1: W/N accused-appellants guilt was sufficiently established
age becomes greater and such doubt must be resolved in favor of the accused.
HELD1: Contrary to accused-appellants claim that he was convicted because of his
In the present case, the prosecution did not offer the victims certificate of live birth weak defense, his conviction was actually founded on the overwhelming evidence of
or similar authentic documents in evidence. The victim and her mother, however, the prosecution.
testified that she was only three years old at the time of the rape.
The term dragged should not indeed be taken in the meaning understood by
Because of the vast disparity between the alleged age (three years old) and the appellant as dragged along on the ground. When asked on cross-examination by the
age sought to be proved (below twelve years), the trial court would have had no defense counsel to describe how she and appellant travelled at (sic) forty (40) meters
difficulty ascertaining the victims age from her appearance. No reasonable doubt, distance, she said, He was holding my hands and at the same time he is (sic) pushing
therefore, exists that the second element of statutory rape, i.e., that the victim was me forward. This testimony adequately explains the absence of injuries in her body. At
below twelve years of age at the time of the commission of the offense, is present. any rate, it is not necessary for the commission of rape that there be marks of physical
violence on the victims body. While Emily repeatedly mentioned her struggles to be
released from his grasp, such efforts need not always result in physical
injuries. Besides, they did not refer to the circumstances when she was being dragged ISSUE: W/N the guilt of the accused proved beyond reasonable doubt.
by the accused, but to the circumstances when he initially grabbed her hands, when he HELD: Anent the paraffin test, it is true that it produced a negative result but such
was on top of her, when he was undressing her, and when she was exerting efforts to fact does not ipso facto merit Delfins acquittal. This Court acknowledges that the
disengage herself from the sexual anchorage. absence of powder burns in a suspects hand is not conclusive proof that he has not
The circumstances of force and intimidation attending the instant case were fired a gun. In fact, the traces of nitrates can easily be removed by the simple act of
manifested clearly not only in the victims testimony but also in the physical evidence washing ones hand.
presented during the trial consisting of her torn dress and underwear as well as the
medico-legal report. Such pieces of evidence indeed are more eloquent than a hundred
witnesses. The fact of carnal knowledge is not disputed. It was positively established Caballes vs. CA
through the offended partys own testimony and corroborated by that of her examining
(Search of moving vehicles)
physician.
[At] about 9:15 p.m. of June 28, 1989, Sgt. Victorino Noceja and Pat. Alex de
Moreover, the conduct of the complaining witness immediately following the
assault clearly established the truth of her charge that she was raped by accused- Castro, while on a routine patrol in Barangay Sampalucan, Pagsanjan, Laguna, spotted
a passenger jeep unusually covered with "kakawati" leaves.
appellant.
Suspecting that the jeep was loaded with smuggled goods, the two police
officers flagged down the vehicle. The jeep was driven by appellant. When asked what
ABALOS vs. CA was loaded on the jeep, he did not answer; he appeared pale and nervous.

(absence of gun powder) With appellant's consent, the police officers checked the cargo and they
discovered bundles of 3.08 mm aluminum/galvanized conductor wires exclusively
Delfin Abalos was charged with murder for the killing of Liberato Damias. [1] The owned by National Power Corporation (NPC). Thereafter, appellant and the vehicle with
Information alleged that the accused, using an unlicensed firearm, with intent to kill, the high-voltage wires were brought to the Pagsanjan Police Station.
employing treachery and taking advantage of superior strength, shot and killed Liberato
Damias on the night of 27 January 1993 As his last straw of argument, the accused questions the constitutionality of
the search and validity of his arrest on the ground that no warrant was issued to that
Veronica Bukatao (girlfriend of the deceased) narrated that on that night, Liberato effect.
visited her at around 7 o'clock. As she was entertaining him at the balcony of their
house she noticed petitioner walking back and forth in front of their house. He was just ISSUE: whether the evidence taken from the warrantless search is admissible against
about four (4) meters or so away from them. As she was ill at ease with petitioners the appellant.
conspicuous demeanor below, she asked Liberato to transfer to their sala where they HELD: The conviction or acquittal of petitioner hinges primarily on the validity of the
could continue talking. When they moved inside, Liberato sat near the entrance of the warrantless search and seizure made by the police officers, and the admissibility of the
house with his left side towards the door with Veronica sitting in front of him. The evidence obtained by virtue thereof.
positions of Liberato and Veronica and their proximity to one another could have
heightened Delfin's animosity that he suddenly appeared at the door and in a semi- Search of moving vehicle - Highly regulated by the government, the vehicle's
kneeling position shot Liberato on his left side. Veronica positively identified petitioner inherent mobility reduces expectation of privacy especially when its transit in public
Delfin Abalos as he scurried away since the sala of her house was adequately lit by a thoroughfares furnishes a highly reasonable suspicion amounting to probable cause
kerosene lamp and he was only one (1) meter away from them when he pulled the that the occupant committed a criminal activity. 15 Thus, the rules governing search and
trigger. seizure have over the years been steadily liberalized whenever a moving vehicle is the
object of the search on the basis of practicality. This is so considering that before a
RTC: It found petitioner guilty of murder. However, the aggravating circumstance warrant could be obtained, the place, things and persons to be searched must be
of use of an unlicensed firearm was not appreciated as the weapon was never described to the satisfaction of the issuing judge a requirement which borders on the
recovered. impossible in the case of smuggling effected by the use of a moving vehicle that can
CA: homicide. transport contraband from one place to another with impunity. We might add that a
warrantless search of a moving vehicle is justified on the ground that it is not
Contention of the accused: the appellate court erred in finding him guilty beyond practicable to secure a warrant because the vehicle can be quickly moved out of the
reasonable doubt of homicide. He argues that he had a solid alibi (he was at the locality or jurisdiction in which the warrant must be sought. 16 Searches without warrant
tobacco field) to prove his innocence and that the paraffin test yielded negative for of automobiles is also allowed for the purpose of preventing violations of smuggling or
powder burns on his hand, hence confirming that he never fired the shot that killed immigration laws, provided such searches are made at borders or 'constructive borders'
Liberato. like checkpoints near the boundary lines of the State.17
The mere mobility of these vehicles, however, does not give the police officers is replete with cases where tipped information has become a sufficient probable cause
unlimited discretion to conduct indiscriminate searches without warrants if made within to effect a warrantless search and seizure. Unfortunately, none exists in this case.
the interior of the territory and in the absence of probable cause. 18 Still and all, the
important thing is that there was probable cause to conduct the warrantless search, accused Rudy Caballes is hereby ACQUITTED of the crime charged.
which must still be present in such a case.
Although the term eludes exact definition, probable cause signifies a MUSTANG LUMBER, INC VS. CA
reasonable ground of suspicion supported by circumstances sufficiently strong in
themselves to warrant a cautious man's belief that the person accused is guilty of the (Search of moving vehicles)
offense with which he is charged; or the existence of such facts and circumstances
FACTS: On 1 April 1990, acting on an information that a huge stockpile of narra
which could lead a reasonably discreet and prudent man to believe that an offense has
been committed and that the items, articles or objects sought in connection with said flitches, shorts, and slabs were seen inside the lumberyard of the petitioner in
Valenzuela, Metro Manila, the SAID organized a team of foresters and policemen and
offense or subject to seizure and destruction by law is in the place to be searched.The
sent it to conduct surveillance at the said lumberyard. In the course thereof, the team
required probable cause that will justify a warrantless search and seizure is not
members saw coming out from the lumberyard the petitioner's truck, with Plate No.
determined by a fixed formula but is resolved according to the facts of each case.
CCK-322, loaded with lauan and almaciga lumber of assorted sizes and dimensions.
One such form of search of moving vehicles is the "stop-and-search" without Since the driver could not produce the required invoices and transport documents, the
warrant at military or police checkpoints which has been declared to be not illegal per team seized the truck together with its cargo and impounded them at the DENR
se, for as long as it is warranted by the exigencies of public order and conducted in a compound at Visayas Avenue, Quezon City.1 The team was not able to gain entry into
way least intrusive to motorists. A checkpoint may either be a mere routine inspection the premises because of the refusal of the owner.
or it may involve an extensive search.
On 3 April 1990, RTC Valenzuela issued a search warrant. On same day, the team
Routine inspections are not regarded as violative of an individual's right seized from the lumberyard narra shorts, trimmings and slabs, narra lumber, and
against unreasonable search. The search which is normally permissible in this instance various species of lumber and shorts.
is limited to the following instances: (1) where the officer merely draws aside the curtain
On 4 April 1990, team returned to lumberyard and placed under administrative seizure
of a vacant vehicle which is parked on the public fair grounds; (2) simply looks into a
(owner retains physical possession of seized articles, only an inventory is taken) the
vehicle; (3) flashes a light therein without opening the car's doors; 26 (4) where the
remaining lumber because Mustang Lumber failed to produce required documents
occupants are not subjected to a physical or body search; 27 (5) where the inspection of
upon demand. Upon recommendation of SAID Chief Robles, DENR Sec Factoran
the vehicles is limited to a visual search or visual inspection; 28 and (6) where the routine
suspended Mustang Lumbers permit and confiscated in favor of the govt the seized
check is conducted in a fixed area.29
articles.
None of the foregoing circumstances is obtaining in the case at bar. The police
Mustang Lumber filed for a TRO against Factoran and Robles, and questioned the
officers did not merely conduct a visual search or visual inspection of herein petitioner's
validity of the April 1 and 4 seizure.
vehicle. They had to reach inside the vehicle, lift the kakawati leaves and look inside
the sacks before they were able to see the cable wires. It cannot be considered a ISSUES: a) WON the search and seizure on April 1 was valid.
simple routine check.
HELD: Yes. It was duly established that on 1 April 1990, the petitioner's truck with
On the other hand, when a vehicle is stopped and subjected to an extensive Plate No. CCK-322 was coming out from the petitioner's lumberyard loaded with lauan
search, such a warrantless search would be constitutionally permissible only if the and almaciga lumber of different sizes and dimensions which were not accompanied
officers conducting the search have reasonable or probable cause to believe, before with the required invoices and transport documents. The seizure of such truck and its
the search, that either the motorist is a law-offender or they will find the instrumentality cargo was a valid exercise of the power vested upon a forest officer or employee by
or evidence pertaining to a crime in the vehicle to be searched. 31 Section 80 of P.D. No. 705, as amended by P.D. No. 1775. Then, too, as correctly held
by the trial court and the Court of Appeals in the FIRST CIVIL CASE, the search was
In the case at bar, the vehicle of the petitioner was flagged down because the
conducted on a moving vehicle. Such a search could be lawfully conducted without a
police officers who were on routine patrol became suspicious when they saw that the
back of the vehicle was covered with kakawati leaves which, according to them, was search warrant.
unusual and uncommon. Search of a moving vehicle is one of the five doctrinally accepted exceptions to the
constitutional mandate 34 that no search or seizure shall be made except by virtue of a
We hold that the fact that the vehicle looked suspicious simply because it is
warrant issued by a judge after personally determining the existence of probable cause.
not common for such to be covered with kakawati leaves does not constitute "probable
cause" as would justify the conduct of a search without a warrant. The other exceptions are (3) search as an incident to a lawful arrest, (2) seizure of
evidence in plain view, (3) customs searches, and (4) consented warrantless search.
In addition, the police authorities do not claim to have received any
confidential report or tipped information that petitioner was carrying stolen cable wires
in his vehicle which could otherwise have sustained their suspicion. Our jurisprudence PEOPLE v. BALINGAN
(Checkpoints)
On August 1988, the Narcotics Division of the Baguio City police received a People vs. Johnson
telephone call from an unnamed male informant, alleging that petitioner Balingan is
(Routine Airport Procedures)
going to Manila with a bag full of marijuana.
Acting on such information, police officer Obrera conducted surveillance of Accused-appellant Leila Reyes Johnson was, at the time of the incident, 58 years
petitioner in different places, such as her house and at bus stations around the city. old, a widow, and a resident of Ocean Side, California, U.S.A.

Upon receiving information that petitioner boarded a Dangwa Bus, Obrera On June 16, 1998, she arrived in the Philippines to visit her sons family in
immediately went to the terminal to confirm the said report. He boarded the bus and Calamba, Laguna. She was due to fly back to the United States on July 26.
saw petitioner carrying a gray maleta. A prior checkpoint along Kennon Road was set- At around 7:30 p.m. of that day, Olivia Ramirez was on duty as a lady frisker at
up by the police in order to apprehend petitioner. Upon arrival at the checkpoint, the Gate 16 of the NAIA departure area.
bus stopped and yielded to the police officers. Obrera announced a routine check on
petitioner, but petitioner did not respond. The police officers then grabbed the bag in When she frisked accused-appellant Leila Johnson, a departing passenger bound
the overhead compartment of petitioner Balingan and opened it. Just as they for the United States, she felt something hard on the latters abdominal area. Upon
suspected, they found approximately 3 kilos of marijuana. inquiry, Mrs. Johnson explained she needed to wear two panty girdles as she had just
undergone an operation as a result of an ectopic pregnancy.
The police officers then requested Balingan to go with them to the police
station. However, the petitioner resisted and bit one of the police officers. Eventually, Not satisfied with the explanation, Ramirez reported the matter to her superior,
after thirty minutes, they were able to pull Balingan out of the bus and brought her to saying that she does not believe that it is just a panty. She was directed to take
the Baguio City Police Station and locked her up in jail. accused-appellant to the nearest womens room for inspection.

ISSUE Whether or not there was sufficient probable cause for the police officers to Ramirez then asked her to bring out the thing under her girdle. Accused-appellant
believe that she was then and there committing a crime so as to justify the warrantless brought out three plastic packs, which Ramirez then turned over to her superior, outside
search and seizure of the bag the womens room.[9]

HELD: Yes. The confiscated packs were found to be shabu.[10]

We also find no merit in appellant's argument that the marijuana flowering tops Accused-appellant claims that she was arrested and detained in gross violation of
should be excluded as evidence, they being the products of an alleged illegal her constitutional rights. She argues that the shabu confiscated from her is inadmissible
warrantless search. The search and seizure in the case at bench happened in a against her because she was forced to affix her signature on the plastic bags while she
moving, public vehicle. was detained at the 1st RASO office, without the assistance of counsel and without
having been informed of her constitutional rights. Hence, she argues, the
Search and seizure must be supported by a valid warrant is not an absolute methamphetamine hydrochloride, or shabu, should have been excluded from the
rule. There are at least three (3) well-recognized exceptions thereto. These are: [1] a evidence.[17]
search incidental to an arrest, [2] a search of a moving vehicle, and [3] seizure of
evidence in plain view (emphasis supplied). The circumstances of the case clearly ISSUE: admissibility of the seized illegal drugs at the airport
show that the search in question was made as regards a moving vehicle. Therefore, a HELD: The methamphetamine hydrochloride seized from her during the routine frisk at
valid warrant was not necessary to effect the search on appellant and his co-accused. the airport was acquired legitimately pursuant to airport security procedures.
Unquestionably, the warrantless search in the case at bench is not bereft of a Persons may lose the protection of the search and seizure clause by exposure of
probable cause. The Baguio INP Narcotics Intelligence Division received an information their persons or property to the public in a manner reflecting a lack of subjective
that appellant was going to transport marijuana in a bag to Manila. Their surveillance expectation of privacy, which expectation society is prepared to recognize as
operations revealed that appellant, whose movements had been previously monitored reasonable.[19]
by the Narcotics Division boarded a Dangwa bus bound for Manila carrying a
suspicious looking gray luggage bag. When the moving, public bus was stopped, her Such recognition is implicit in airport security procedures. With increased concern
bag, upon inspection, yielded marijuana. Under those circumstances, the warrantless over airplane hijacking and terrorism has come increased security at the nations
search of appellant's bag was not illegal. airports. Passengers attempting to board an aircraft routinely pass through metal
detectors; their carry-on baggage as well as checked luggage are routinely subjected to
x-ray scans. Should these procedures suggest the presence of suspicious objects,
physical searches are conducted to determine what the objects are. There is little
question that such searches are reasonable, given their minimal intrusiveness, the
gravity of the safety interests involved, and the reduced privacy expectations
associated with airline travel. Indeed, travelers are often notified through airport public
address systems, signs, and notices in their airline tickets that they are subject to
search and, if any prohibited materials or substances are found, such would be subject In this appeal, accused-appellant Aspiras questions the existence of the buy-bust
to seizure. These announcements place passengers on notice that ordinary operation, imputes ill-motive on the police officers and asserts that the evidence against
constitutional protections against warrantless searches and seizures do not apply to him is planted.
routine airport procedures.
ISSUE:Is the evidence presented before the trial court sufficient to warrant
The packs of methamphetamine hydrochloride having thus been obtained through accused-appellants conviction?
a valid warrantless search, they are admissible in evidence against the accused-
appellant herein. Corollarily, her subsequent arrest, although likewise without warrant, HELD: While the conviction of accused-appellant in selling prohibited drugs is
was justified since it was effected upon the discovery and recovery of shabu in her warranted, accused-appellant should be liable only for such crime and his acquittal for
person in flagrante delicto. possessing two bricks of marijuana flower tops is called for.
It appears that the police officers justification for the seizure of the prohibited
drugs was rooted from the fact that the intrusion and search was pursuant to accused-
PEOPLE vs ASPIRAS appellants lawful arrest after selling marijuana to a member of the buy-bust team. A
search incident to a lawful arrest is limited to the person of one arrested and the
(seizure of evidence in plain view) premises within his immediate control. [15]
On December 26, 1994, Sr. Inspector Valdez of Paraaque Philippine National Under the plain view doctrine, unlawful objects within the plain view of an officer
Police Drug Enforcement Unit received a telephone call, informing him that a certain who has the right to be in the position to have that view are subject to seizure and may
alias Rolly, later identified as accused-appellant Rolando Aspiras, be presented in evidence.[16] Nonetheless, the seizure of evidence in plain view must
of Tambo Paraaque was peddling prohibited drugs. comply with the following elements: (a) a prior valid intrusion based on the
Upon such information, Sr. Insp. Valdez constituted PO3 Jose Soreta, Police valid warrantless arrest in which the police are legally present in the pursuit of their
Aides (P/A) Abelardo Soto and Jerry Sabino to conduct a surveillance operation on official duties; (b) the evidence was inadvertently discovered by the police who had the
Rolando Aspiras. On the same day, surveillance was conducted at J. Puyat Compound right to be where they are; (c) the evidence must be immediately apparent; and (d) plain
where the house of the suspected peddler was located. view justified mere seizure of evidence without further search. [17]

Afterwards, the surveillance team went back to the police station and planned a The record shows that the two bricks of marijuana flower tops were recovered
buy-bust operation. On December 27, 1994, at around 7 in the evening, P/A under the table, wrapped in a plastic bag.
Jerry Sabino acted as the poseur-buyer while PO3 Soreta, P/A Soto and Crisanto Cruz While it is true that the police officers had prior justification for intrusion, permitting
positioned themselves approximately ten meters away from Aspiras house. a warrantless seizure of any piece of evidence incriminating an accused, nonetheless,
When Sabino called for Aspiras, alias Bukol went out and inquired applying the plain view doctrine, such must be limited to those evidence that the police
what Sabino wanted. Sabino related to San Lorenzo that he wanted to score or buy officer came across inadvertently.
marijuana for P50.00 pesos. Sabino then gave to San Lorenzo the marked 5 pieces of
ten peso bills worth P50.00. The prosecution failed to show whether or not the plastic bag was transparent that
would prove beyond reasonable doubt that the plain view of such plastic bag would
Upon receipt of such amount, San Lorenzo entered Aspiras house. Soon readily disclose that its contents are marijuana. In our criminal justice system, the
after, Aspiras came out and asked Sabino if he was the one who wanted to score. overriding consideration is not whether the court doubts the innocence of the accused
When Sabino confirmed, Aspiras handed five (5) pieces of aluminum foils. Upon but whether it entertains a reasonable doubt as to his guilt. If the inculpatory facts and
verifying its contents as marijuana, Sabino signaled his companions to make the arrest. circumstances are capable of two or more explanations, one of which is consistent with
When Aspiras saw the rest of Sabinos companions, he rushed inside his house the innocence of the accused and the other consistent with his guilt, then the evidence
and the police team sought after him. Thereat, the marked money was recovered does not fulfill the test of moral certainty and is not sufficient to support a
from Aspiras while PO3 Soreta seized two bricks of marijuana flower tops wrapped in conviction.[21] Corollarily, the two bricks of marijuana are inadmissible in evidence
plastic bag under a table. Afterwards, Aspiras and San Lorenzo were brought to the against accused-appellant.
headquarters and the marijuana flower tops were sent to the NBI for examination.
Charges were then filed against Aspiras and San Lorenzo for violation of Sections 4
and 8 of R.A. 6425, as amended. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. QUE MING KHA
RTC: rendered its judgment convicting accused-appellant Aspiras and (Plain View) (Facts: go to the last paragraph)
accused San Lorenzo of selling marijuana. With respect to the charge of possessing
prohibited drugs under Section 8 thereof, accused San Lorenzo was acquitted while Go further argued that the search made on the van was illegal and therefore the
accused-appellant Aspiras was convicted. shabu discovered from that search is inadmissible as evidence. We do not agree.
The Constitution proscribes search and seizure without a judicial warrant and any
evidence obtained without such warrant is inadmissible for any purpose in any
proceeding. The rule is, however, not absolute. Search and seizure may be made Appellant contends that there was unlawful search. First, the records show that
without a warrant and the evidence obtained therefrom may be admissible in the the law enforcers had more than ample time to secure a search warrant. Second, that
following instances: (1) search incident to a lawful arrest; (2) search of a moving motor the marijuana plants were found in an unfenced lot does not remove appellant from the
vehicle; (3) search in violation of customs laws; (4) seizure of evidence in plain mantle of protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.
view; (5) when the accused himself waives his right against unreasonable searches
and seizures.[22] The search made in the case at bar falls under the fourth The Office of the Solicitor General argues that the records clearly show that there
exception. We held in People vs. Doria:[23] was no search made by the police team, in the first place. The OSG points out that the
marijuana plants in question were grown in an unfenced lot and as each grew about
Objects falling in plain view of an officer who has a right to be in a position to have that five (5) feet tall, they were visible from afar, and were, in fact, immediately spotted by
view are subject to seizure even without a search warrant and may be introduced in the police officers when they reached the site. The seized marijuana plants were, thus,
evidence. The 'plain view' doctrine applies when the following requisites concur: (a) the in plain view of the police officers. The instant case must, therefore, be treated as a
law enforcement officer in search of the evidence has a prior justification for an warrantless lawful search under the "plain view" doctrine
intrusion or is in a position from which he can view a particular area; (b) the discovery of
evidence in plain view is inadvertent; (c) it is immediately apparent to the officer that the ISSUE: (1) Was the search and seizure of the marijuana plants in the
item he observes may be evidence of a crime, contraband or otherwise subject to present case lawful?
seizure. The law enforcement officer must lawfully make an initial intrusion or properly (2) Were the seized plants admissible in evidence against the accused?
be in a position from which he can particularly view the area. In the course of such
lawful intrusion, he came inadvertently across a piece of evidence incriminating the HELD: NO.
accused. The object must be open to eye and hand and its discovery inadvertent. The Constitution lays down the general rule that a search and seizure must be
The facts show that while the van was traversing Don Antonio Avenue in Quezon carried on the strength of a judicial warrant. Otherwise, the search and seizure is
City, it accidentally hit a seven-year old ambulant vendor. The van stopped and the deemed "unreasonable." Evidence procured on the occasion of an unreasonable
owner got off to bring the boy to the hospital. A police officer who witnessed the search and seizure is deemed tainted for being the proverbial fruit of a poisonous tree
accident approached the van to apprehend the driver for reckless imprudence. As he and should be excluded.[32]Such evidence shall be inadmissible in evidence for any
stood near the van, he saw through the lightly tinted window of the van several sacks purpose in any proceeding.[33]
placed at the back of the van. One of the sacks was open, revealing several plastic In the instant case, there was no search warrant issued by a judge after personal
bags containing white crystalline substance which the police suspected to be determination of the existence of probable cause. From the declarations of the police
shabu. Clearly, the prohibited substance was within the plain view of the police officer officers themselves, it is clear that they had at least one (1) day to obtain a warrant to
who was in a position to be near the van at the time. The substance is therefore not a search appellant's farm. Their informant had revealed his name to them. The place
product of an illegal search and not inadmissible as evidence. where the cannabis plants were planted was pinpointed. From the information in their
possession, they could have convinced a judge that there was probable cause to justify
the issuance of a warrant. But they did not. Instead, they uprooted the plants and
PEOPLE vs. VALDEZ apprehended the accused on the excuse that the trip was a good six hours and
inconvenient to them. We need not underscore that the protection against illegal search
(plain view) and seizure is constitutionally mandated and only under specific instances are searches
SPO3 Marcelo Tipay, testified that at around 10:15 a.m. of September 24, 1996, allowed without warrants.[34] The mantle of protection extended by the Bill of Rights
he received a tip from an unnamed informer about the presence of a marijuana covers both innocent and guilty alike against any form of high-handedness of law
plantation, allegedly owned by appellant Abe Valdez. The prohibited plants were enforcers, regardless of the praiseworthiness of their intentions.
allegedly planted close to appellant's hut. Police Inspector Alejandro R. Parungao, then We find no reason to subscribe to Solicitor General's contention that we apply the
formed a reaction team from his operatives to verify the report. "plain view" doctrine. For the doctrine to apply, the following elements must be present:
At approximately 5:00 o'clock A.M. the following day, said police team, (a) a prior valid intrusion based on the valid warrantless arrest in which the
accompanied by their informer, left for the site where the marijuana plants were police are legally present in the pursuit of their official duties;
allegedly being grown. The police operatives arrived at the place pinpointed by their
informant. The police found appellant alone in his nipa hut. They, then, proceeded to (b) the evidence was inadvertently discovered by the police who have the
look around the area where appellant had his kaingin and saw seven (7) five-foot high, right to be where they are; and
flowering marijuana plants in two rows, approximately 25 meters from appellant's
(c) the evidence must be immediately apparent; and
hut.[5]PO2 Balut asked appellant who owned the prohibited plants and, according to
Balut, the latter admitted that they were his. [6] The police uprooted the seven marijuana (d) plain view justified mere seizure of evidence without further search. [35]
plants. The police took photos of appellant standing beside the cannabis
plants.[8] Appellant was then arrested. In the instant case, recall that PO2 Balut testified that they first located the
marijuana plants before appellant was arrested without a warrant. [36] Hence, there was
no valid warrantless arrest which preceded the search of appellant's premises. Note
further that the police team was dispatched to appellant's kaingin precisely to search for While inside the hut, appellant surrendered to the team two cans containing dried
and uproot the prohibited flora. The seizure of evidence in "plain view" applies only marijuana fruiting tops. One can contained twenty (20) bricks of fruiting tops. The team
where the police officer is not searching for evidence against the accused, but searched the hut in the presence of appellant and his live-in partner. They found a
inadvertently comes across an incriminating object. [37] Clearly, their discovery of the plastic container under the kitchen table, which contained four (4) big bricks of dried
cannabis plants was not inadvertent. We also note the testimony of SPO2 Tipay that marijuana leaves and a .38 caliber revolver with four live ammunitions.The team seized
upon arriving at the area, they first had to "look around the area" before they could spot the prohibited drug, the revolver and ammunitions. The team seized and signed a
the illegal plants.[38] Patently, the seized marijuana plants were not "immediately receipt for the seized items. Barangay Captain Barnachea and SPO1 Edgar Bermudez
apparent" and a "further search" was needed. In sum, the marijuana plants in question of the Masinloc Police Station also signed the receipt as witnesses. SPO1 Buloron and
were not in "plain view" or "open to eye and hand." The "plain view" doctrine, thus, his companions arrested appellant and brought him to San Marcelino, Zambales.
cannot be made to apply.
Appellant claims that the hut,[14] which was searched by the police and where the
Nor can we sustain the trial court's conclusion that just because the marijuana subject marijuana was recovered, does not belong to him. He points to another
plants were found in an unfenced lot, appellant could not invoke the protection afforded house[15] as his real residence. To support his claim, he presents a document [16] that
by the Charter against unreasonable searches by agents of the State. The right against shows that the subject hut was sold to his brother Leonardo C. Estella by one Odilon
unreasonable searches and seizures is the immunity of one's person, which includes Eclarinal. The OSG, on the other hand, argues that just because appellant has another
his residence, his papers, and other possessions. [39] The guarantee refers to "the right house in a place away from the hut that was searched does not necessarily mean that
of personal security"[40] of the individual. As appellant correctly points out, what is the hut is not occupied by him or under his full control. [17] The prosecution cites the
sought to be protected against the State's unlawful intrusion are persons, not testimony of Rey Barnachea, the barangay captain of that place, to show that the hut in
places.[41] To conclude otherwise would not only mean swimming against the stream, it question belongs to appellant.
would also lead to the absurd logic that for a person to be immune against
unreasonable searches and seizures, he must be in his home or office, within a fenced ISSUE: Whether or not the search and seizure was valid.
yard or a private place. The Bill of Rights belongs as much to the person in the street as HELD: No. The OSG argues that [e]ven assuming that appellant was not the occupant
to the individual in the sanctuary of his bedroom. of the hut, the fact remains that he voluntarily surrendered the marijuana to the police
We therefore hold, with respect to the first issue, that the confiscated plants were officers. After appellant had surrendered the prohibited stuff, the police had a right to
evidently obtained during an illegal search and seizure. As to the second issue, which arrest him even without a warrant and to conduct a search of the immediate vicinity of
involves the admissibility of the marijuana plants as evidence for the prosecution, we the arrestee for weapons and other unlawful objects as an incident to the lawful
find that said plants cannot, as products of an unlawful search and seizure, be used as arrest.[31]
evidence against appellant.They are fruits of the proverbial poisoned tree. It was, The above argument assumes that the prosecution was able to prove that
therefore, a reversible error on the part of the court a quo to have admitted and relied appellant had voluntarily surrendered the marijuana to the police officers. As earlier
upon the seized marijuana plants as evidence to convict appellant. adverted to, there is no convincing proof that he indeed surrendered the prohibited
drug, whether voluntarily or otherwise. In fact, the testimony of Prosecution Witness
Barnachea clouds rather than clarifies the prosecutions story.
PEOPLE vs. ANTONIO C. ESTELLA Given this backdrop, the police authorities cannot claim that the search was
(plain view) incident to a lawful arrest. Such a search presupposes a lawful or valid arrest and can
only be invoked through Section 5, Rule 113 of the Revised Rules on Criminal
Prior to November 20, 1996, a warrant was issued for the conduct of a search and Procedure, which we quote:
seizure in the residence of appellant at Purok Yakal, Barangay Baloganon, Masinloc,
Zambales. SEC. 5. Arrest without warrant; when lawful - A peace officer or a private person may,
without a warrant, arrest a person:
In the morning of November 20, 1996, Senior Police Officer 1 (SPO1) Antonio Bulor[o]n
et.al enforced the search warrant. Barangay Captain Barnaceha accompanied the (a) When, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually
police officers to the place mentioned in the search warrant. committing, or is attempting to commit an offense;

On their way to Purok Yakal, SPO1 Buloron saw appellant sitting on a rocking chair (b) When an offense has just been committed and he has probable cause to believe
located about two (2) meters away from a hut owned by Narding Estella, brother of based on personal knowledge of facts or circumstances that the person to be arrested
appellant, and being rented by appellants live-in partner, named Eva. They approached has committed it; and
appellant and introduced themselves as police officers. They showed appellant the (c) When the person to be arrested is a prisoner who has escaped from a penal
search warrant and explained the contents to him. SPO1 Buloron asked appellant if establishment or place where he is serving final judgment or is temporarily confined
indeed he had in his possession prohibited drug and if so, to surrender the same so he while his case is pending, or has escaped while being transferred from one confinement
would deserve a lesser penalty. to another.
In cases falling under paragraphs (a) and (b) above, the person arrested without a informed them that he did not have territorial jurisdiction over the matter. [5] The team
warrant shall be forthwith delivered to the nearest police station or jail and shall be then left Bacolod City for San Carlos City. They arrived there around six-thirty in the
proceeded against in accordance with Section 7 Rule 112. evening, then went to the house of Executive Judge Roberto S. Javellana to secure a
search warrant. They were not able to do so because it was nighttime and office hours
Never was it proven that appellant, who was the person to be arrested, was in were obviously over. They were told by the judge to go back in the morning. [6]
possession of the subject prohibited drug during the search. It follows, therefore, that
there was no way of knowing if he had committed or was actually committing an offense Nonetheless, the team proceeded to barangay Bagonbon and arrived at the
in the presence of the arresting officers. Without that knowledge, there could have been residence of accused-appellant in the early morning of July 13, 1995. SPO4 Villamor
no search incident to a lawful arrest. knocked at the gate and called out for the accused-appellant. The prosecution
contends that the accused-appellant opened the gate and permitted them to come
Assuming arguendo that appellant was indeed committing an offense in the in. He was immediately asked by SPO4 Villamor about the suspected marijuana plants
presence of the arresting officers, and that the arrest without a warrant was lawful, it still and he admitted that he planted and cultivated the same for the use of his wife who
cannot be said that the search conducted was within the confines of the law. Searches was suffering from migraine. SPO4 Villamor then told him that he would be charged for
and seizures incident to lawful arrests are governed by Section 12, Rule 126 of the violation of Section 9 of R.A. No. 6425 and informed him of his constitutional rights. The
Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, which reads: operatives then uprooted the suspected marijuana plants. SPO1 Linda conducted an
Section 12. Search incident to lawful arrest. A person lawfully arrested may be initial field test of the plants by using the Narcotics Drug Identification Kit. The test
searched for dangerous weapons or anything which may have been used or constitute yielded a positive result.[7]
proof in the commission of an offense without a search warrant. On his part, accused-appellant .he heard somebody knocking outside his
However, the scope of the search should be limited to the area within which the house. He went down bringing with him a flashlight. After he opened the gate, four (4)
person to be arrested can reach for a weapon or for evidence that he or she can persons who he thought were members of the military, entered the premises then went
destroy.[32] The prevailing rule is that the arresting officer may take from the arrested inside the house. . One of the four men told him to sit in the living room. Some of the
individual any money or property found upon the latters person -- that which was used men went upstairs while the others went around the house. None of them asked for his
in the commission of the crime or was the fruit of the crime, or which may provide the permission to search his house and the premises.
prisoner with the means of committing violence or escaping, or which may be used in ISSUE:
evidence in the trial of the case
HELD: The relevant constitutional provisions are found in Sections 2 and 3 [2],
The purpose of the exception is to protect the arresting officer from being harmed Article III of the 1987 Constitution which read as follows:
by the person being arrested, who might be armed with a concealed weapon, and to
prevent the latter from destroying evidence within reach. The exception, therefore, Sec. 2. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and
should not be strained beyond what is needed to serve its purpose. [36] effects against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature and for any
purpose shall be inviolable
In the case before us, searched was the entire hut, which cannot be said to have
been within appellants immediate control. Thus, the search exceeded the bounds of Sec. 3. xxx
that which may be considered to be incident to a lawful arrest.
(2) Any evidence obtained in violation of this or the preceding section shall be
inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding.

PEOPLE vs. ARMANDO COMPACION Said constitutional provisions are safeguards against reckless, malicious and
unreasonable invasion of privacy and liberty.
(Consented Search)
A search and seizure, therefore, must be carried out through or with a judicial
Acting on a confidential tip supplied by a police informant that accused-appellant warrant; otherwise, such search and seizure becomes unreasonable within the
Armando S. Compacion was growing and cultivating marijuana plants, SPO1 Gilbert L. meaning of the constitutional provision.Evidence secured thereby, i.e., the fruits of the
Linda and SPO2 Basilio Sarong conducted a surveillance of the residence of accused- search and seizure, will be inadmissible in evidence for any purpose in any proceeding.
appellant who was then the barangay captain of barangay Bagonbon, San Carlos City,
Negros Occidental on July 9, 1995. During the said surveillance, they saw two (2) tall The requirement that a warrant must be obtained from the proper judicial authority
plants in the backyard of the accused-appellant which they suspected to be marijuana prior to the conduct of a search and seizure is, however, not absolute. There are
plants.[4] several instances when the law recognizes exceptions, such as when the owner of the
premises consents or voluntarily submits to a search; when the owner of the premises
SPO1 Linda and SPO2 Sarong reported the result of their surveillance and a team waives his right against such incursion; when the search is incidental to a lawful
was formed immediately. arrest; when it is made on vessels and aircraft for violation of customs laws: when it is
On July 12, 1995, the team applied for a search warrant with the office of made on automobiles for the purpose of preventing violations of smuggling or
Executive Judge Bernardo Ponferrada in Bacolod City. However, Judge Ponferrada immigration laws; when it involves prohibited articles in plain view; when it involves a
stop and frisk situation; when the search is under exigent and emergency
circumstances; or in cases of inspection of buildings and other premises for the Appellant Jerry Ting Uy, a Taiwanese national, was charged on July 24, 1998 for
enforcement of fire, sanitary and building regulations. In these instances, a search may violating the Dangerous Drugs Act.
be validly made even without a warrant.
The record shows that at around 3:30 in the afternoon of July 21, 1998, a
In the instant case, the search and seizure conducted by the composite team in Chinese-Filipino police informant went to the Western Police headquarters in Ermita to
the house of accused-appellant was not authorized by a search warrant. It does not inform the police officers that a certain Jerry Ting Uy was engaged in illegal drug
appear either that the situation falls under any of the above mentioned activities in Sta. Cruz, Manila. PO3 Chico asked the police informant to contact
cases. Consequently, accused-appellants right against unreasonable search and appellant and to negotiate with him for the purchase of shabu. The police informant
seizure was clearly violated. called up appellant at about 5 oclock in the afternoon, and they agreed that appellant
would deliver half a kilo of shabu to the informant for P200,000.00 at 6:30 in the
It is extant from the records that accused-appellant did not consent to the evening of that same day.
warrantless search and seizure conducted. While the right to be secure from
unreasonable search and seizure may, like every right, be waived either expressly or Police officers, led by SPO2 Rodolfo Rival, then planned a buy-bust operation for
impliedly,[27] such waiver must constitute a valid waiver made voluntarily, knowingly and the entrapment of appellant. Eight genuine P500.00 bills, marked with the letter C, were
intelligently. The act of the accused-appellant in allowing the members of the military to prepared. These marked P500.00 bills were then placed at the top and at the bottom of
enter his premises and his consequent silence during the unreasonable search and four bundles of bogus money. The police designated PO3 Chico to be the poseur-
seizure could not be construed as voluntary submission or an implied acquiescence to buyer.
warrantless search and seizure especially so when members of the raiding team were
intimidatingly numerous and heavily armed. His implied acquiescence, if any, could not At around 6 oclock in the evening, 13 police officers left the police station and
have been more than mere passive conformity given under coercive or intimidating proceeded to the designated meeting place. Ten minutes later, appellant arrived on
circumstances and is, thus, considered no consent at all within the purview of the board a green Mitsubishi Lancer. Appellant stopped in front of the police informant and
constitutional guarantee. Consequently, herein accused-appellants lack of objection to PO3 Chico, rolled down the window of his car, and talked to the police informant in
the search and seizure is not tantamount to a waiver of his constitutional right or a Chinese. The police informant then told PO3 Chico to board appellants car. PO3 Chico
voluntary submission to the warrantless search and seizure. [28] The case of People v. slid into the front passenger seat while the police informant sat at the backseat of the
Burgos,[29] is instructive. In Burgos, the Court ruled that the accused is not to be car.
presumed to have waived the unlawful search simply because he failed to object. Appellant then asked for the payment of half a kilo of shabu. PO3 Chico handed
There, we held: the marked money to appellant. Appellant reached down under his seat, took a plastic
xxx To constitute a waiver, it must appear first that the right exists; secondly, that the bag and gave it to PO3 Chico. When PO3 Chico opened the plastic bag, he saw a
person involved had knowledge, actual or constructive, of the existence of such a right; transparent plastic bag containing substance which he suspected to be shabu.
and lastly, that said person had an actual intention to relinquish the right (Pasion Vda. At this point, PO3 Chico introduced himself as a police officer and immediately
De Garcia v. Locsin, 65 Phil. 689). The fact that the accused failed to object to the entry arrested appellant. PO3 Chico then retrieved the marked money from appellants
into his house does not amount to a permission to make a search therein (Magoncia v. lap. Thereafter, PO3 Chico inspected the space underneath the drivers seat and found
Palacio, 80 Phil. 770). As pointed out by Justice Laurel in the case of Pasion Vda. De three more plastic bags containing suspected shabu. After Chicos arrest of appellant,
Garcia v. Locsin (supra); SPO2 Rival arrived and informed appellant of his constitutional rights. Appellant was
xxx xxx xxx then brought to the WPD headquarters.

x x x As the constitutional guaranty is not dependent upon any affirmative act of the Appellants contention: that the shabu seized from him is inadmissible in evidence
citizen, the courts do not place the citizen in the position of either contesting an officers ISSUE:
authority by force, or waiving his constitutional rights; but instead they hold that a
peaceful submission to a search or seizure is not a consent or an invitation thereto, but HELD: Appellant was arrested by virtue of a buy-bust operation conducted by the
is merely a demonstration of regard for the supremacy of the law. Drug Enforcement Unit of the Western Police District. A buy-bust operation is a form of
entrapment whereby ways and means are resorted to for the purpose of trapping and
We apply the rule that: courts indulge every reasonable presumption against waiver of capturing lawbreakers in the execution of their criminal plans. It is a procedure or
fundamental constitutional rights and that we do not presume acquiescence in the loss operation sanctioned by law and which has consistently proven itself to be an effective
of fundamental rights. method of apprehending drug peddlers. Thus, unless there is a clear and convincing
evidence that the members of the buy-bust team were inspired by improper motives or
were not properly performing their duties, their testimony on the operation deserves full
THE PEOPLE vs. JERRY TING UY faith and credit

(search incidental to a lawful arrest) In this case, the evidence shows that it was the police informant who initially
contacted and arranged a drug deal with appellant. At the pre-arranged meeting, the
informant was accompanied by PO3 Chico, who posed as a buyer of shabu. PO3 Chico
handed marked money to appellant as payment for half a kilo of shabu. Appellant was "On January 30, 1995, a search warrant was issued. Said search warrant
then arrested when he handed a plastic bag containing shabu to PO3 Chico. ordered the search of the premises of one PETER DOE alias FERDIE and the seizure
of dried marijuana leaves allegedly in the possession of aforesaid person.
In the same vein, appellants contention that the 1,510.8 grams of shabu seized
from him is inadmissible in evidence must also be rejected. The Constitution generally "After the search warrant was issued, the team hatched a plan that a buy-bust
proscribes searches and seizures without judicial warrant. Any evidence obtained operation be conducted on the accused first before the implementation of the search
without such warrant is inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding (Sections 2 and warrant. It was agreed that P01 CAMANTIGUE will be accompanied by their informant
3(2), Article III). The rule is not absolute, however. Searches and seizures may be who will introduce the former to FERDIE as a user who is interested in buying
made without warrant and the evidence obtained therefrom may be admissible in the marijuana.
following instances: (1) the search was incident to a lawful arrest; (2) the search is of a
moving motor vehicle; (3) the search concerns violation of customs laws; (4) the seizure At about 3:30 that same afternoon, a team of policemen together with their informant,
of evidence in plain view; and (5) when the accused himself waives his right against proceeded to where accused resides. Upon arrival thereat, as planned, the informant
unreasonable searches and seizures (People vs. Doria, 301 SCRA 668 [1999]). introduced CAMANTIGUE to FERDIE as a user who wants to buy marijuana. FERDIE
at that time was standing by the door of his store which is just an extension of the
Clearly, the search made by the police officers in the instant case was incidental house where he was staying.
to a lawful arrest. Section 13, Rule 126 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure
explicitly states that a person lawfully arrested may be searched for dangerous The marijuana worth P150.00 was handed to CAMANTIGUE. He then removed his cap
weapons or anything which may have been used or constitute proof in the commission as a signal to his companions that the sale has been consummated. SPO1
of an offense without a search warrant. Undoubtedly, appellant was lawfully arrested, SARMIENTO, P02 MOJICA and his companions approached them and they identified
caught as he was in flagrante delicto as a result of a buy-bust operation conducted by themselves as policemen. They then arrested FERDIE.
police officers. FLORY (wife) was asked to go out of the store, and the policemen announced to the
A buy-bust operation is vastly different from an ordinary arrest. In lawful arrests in couple that they had with them a search warrant for the search and seizure of
the course of a buy-bust operation, it becomes both the duty and the right of the marijuana in the premises of both accused. Before the raiders proceeded to search the
apprehending officers to conduct a warrantless search not only on the person of the house of the accused, they called for barangay officials in the area to witness the
accused but also in the permissible area within his reach, i.e., that point which is within conduct of the search.
the effective control of the person arrested, or that which may furnish him the means of Inside the bedroom of the accused, SPO1 SARMIENTO found a balikbayan
committing violence or of escaping (People vs. Cueno, 298 SCRA 621 [1998]). In other box which contained dirty clothes, a brick of dried flowering tops of marijuana wrapped
words, a warrantless search incidental to a lawful arrest may extend beyond the person in a newspaper and twenty one (21) plastic tea bags containing dried flowering tops of
of the one arrested to include the premises or surroundings under his immediate marijuana together with rolling papers.
control. In this case, the three plastic bags containing a total of 1,500 grams of shabu
were seized inside the car where appellant himself was arrested. Appellant would question his conviction in Criminal Case No. 38-
95(possession and control of a prohibited drug) allegedly because of the illegality of the
search made in his house.
PEOPLE vs. FERDINAND GUENO ISSUE:
(incidental to a lawful search) HELD: The arrest of appellant has been made in the course of a buy-bust
operation, thus, in flagrante delicto.
On January 25, 1995, an asset accompanied P01 AVELINO CAMANTIGUE
and pointed to the house of the accused FERDINAND CUENO. Upon instructions of A buy-bust operation - a form of entrapment which has repeatedly been
their commanding officer, PO1 CAMANTIGUE together with SPO1 AQUILINO accepted to be a valid means of arresting violators of the Dangerous Drugs Law [15] - is
SARMIENTO and P02 EDWIN MOJICA conducted surveillance operations on the far variant from an ordinary arrest. In lawful arrests, it becomes both the duty and the
alleged drug pushing activities of accused FERDINAND GUENO at around 9:30 in the right of the apprehending officers to conduct a warrantless search not only on the
morning of January 26, 1995. P01 CAMANTIGUE who posed as a newspaper vendor person of the suspect but also in the permissible area within his reach, i.e., that point
observed from a distance of 15 meters from the store of FERDIE CUENO that a person which is within the effective control of the person arrested, or that which may furnish
was handing money to said accused and FERDIE in turn gave something to the person him with the means of committing violence or of escaping.
who immediately inserted the same in his pocket. CAMANTIGUE allegedly overheard
FERDIE saying: 'hindi ka lugi sa halagang P20.00 at iyan ay malakas.' At that time
SARMIENTO and MOJICA passed by CAMANTIGUE who removed his cap as a signal PEOPLE vs. EUGENIO CATAN,
that the sale was already consummated. After this, the group returned to their station,
and reported the result of their surveillance to their commanding officer who instructed (incident to a lawful arrest)
them to apply for a search warrant.
The facts follow: On 8 April 1989, the Special Action Team, NARCOM, headed
by Lt. Maximo Valiente, decided to conduct a "buy-bust" operation. A team of
operatives was dispatched to the place at around 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. on said date. firearm or whether he was connected with the military or any intelligence group, the
Two (2) members of the team, acting as poseur-buyers, sought out Appellant at the latter answered that he had no permission to possess the same. Thereupon, SPO3 Nio
said address. Inside the latter's house, they negotiated for the purchase of 300 grams confiscated the firearm and turned him over to the custody of the policeman of Caibiran
of marijuana worth P450.00. who subsequently investigated him and charged him with illegal possession of
firearm.[4]
In the meantime, the other members of the team positioned themselves
outside. Crisostomo and Bascuna gave the amount of P500.00 to Appellant. Accused-appellant argued that the trial court erred in admitting the subject firearm
in evidence as it was the product of an unlawful warrantless search. He maintained that
Soon after receiving the marijuana from Appellant, Crisostomo and Bascuna the search made on his person violated his constitutional right to be secure in his
went out of the house and gave a pre-arranged signal to their companions who were person and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures.
waiting outside. The other team members rushed inside the house and arrested
Appellant. Appellant, however, was able to pass the marked bills to a companion inside Hence, the search being unlawful, the homemade firearm confiscated from him is
the house who was able to escape during the commotion that ensued. The marked bills inadmissible in evidence for being "the fruit of the poisonous tree." [11] As such, the
were never recovered. prosecution's case must necessarily fail and the accused-appellant acquitted.
Immediately thereafter, the NARCOM team conducted a search of the premises in the ISSUE:
presence of barangay official, Jess Abundo, a certain Mrs. Catan, the house owner,
and Appellant finding more marijuanas. HELD: The circumstances in this case are similar to those obtaining in Posadas v.
Court of Appeals[15] where this Court held that "at the time the peace officers identified
ISSUE: themselves and apprehended the petitioner as he attempted to flee, they did not know
that he had committed, or was actually committing the offense of illegal possession of
HELD: Appellant's assertion that he was illegally arrested and that the search of his firearm and ammunitions. They just suspected that he was hiding something in the buri
premises was likewise illegal is not well taken. Appellant was arrested in flagrante bag. They did not know what its contents were. The said circumstances did not justify
delicto in the act of selling and delivering marijuana to the poseur-buyers. His case
an arrest without a warrant."
therefore falls under the category of a valid warrantless arrest (Sec. 5, Rule 113, 1985
Rules on Criminal Procedure). This Court, nevertheless, ruled that the search and seizure in the Posadas case
brought about by the suspicious conduct of Posadas himself can be likened to a "stop
The subsequent search of his house which immediately followed yielding other and frisk" situation. There was a probable cause to conduct a search even before an
incriminating evidence, and which became the basis of his conviction for possession of arrest could be made.
a prohibited drug, was a search contemporaneously made and as an incident to a valid
warrantless arrest in the immediate vicinity where the arrest was made. That is a In the present case, after SPO3 Nino told accused-appellant not to run away, the
recognized exception to the general rule that any search and seizure must be former identified himself as a government agent. [16] The peace officers did not know
supported by a valid warrant. The inclusion of the seized items, therefore, as evidence that he had committed, or was actually committing, the offense of illegal possession of
for the prosecution, was in conformity with the provision on lawful searches. firearm. Tasked with verifying the report that there were armed men roaming around in
the barangays surrounding Caibiran, their attention was understandably drawn to the
group that had aroused their suspicion. They could not have known that the object
THE PEOPLE vs. NILO SOLAYAO wrapped in coconut leaves which accused-appellant was carrying hid a firearm.

(stop and frisk) As with Posadas, the case at bar constitutes an instance where a search and
seizure may be effected without first making an arrest. There was justifiable cause to
Accused-appellant Nilo Solayao was charged with the crime of illegal possession "stop and frisk" accused-appellant when his companions fled upon seeing the
of firearm and ammunition. government agents. Under the circumstances, the government agents could not
possibly have procured a search warrant first.
SPO3 Jose Nio, narrated that at about 9:00 o'clock in the evening of July 9, 1992,
with 2 CAFGU members, he went to Barangay Caulangohan, Caibiran, Biliran. They Thus, there was no violation of the constitutional guarantee against unreasonable
were to conduct an intelligence patrol as required of them by their intelligence officer to searches and seizures. Nor was there error on the part of the trial court when it
verify reports on the presence of armed persons roaming around the barangays of admitted the homemade firearm as evidence.
Caibiran. They met the group of accused-appellant Nilo Solaya. The former became
suspicious when they observed that the latter were drunk and that accused-appellant
himself was wearing a camouflage uniform or a jungle suit. People of the Philippines vs Mikael Malmstedt
Police Officer Nio told accused-appellant not to run away and introduced himself (Stop and frisk)
as "PC," after which he seized the dried coconut leaves which the latter was carrying
and found wrapped in it a 49-inch long homemade firearm locally known as Accused Mikael Malmstedt, a tourist Swedish national went to a bus stop in
"latong." When he asked accused-appellant who issued him a license to carry said Sagada to catch the first available trip to Baguio City. From Baguio City, accused
planned to take a late afternoon trip to Angeles City, then proceed to Manila to catch papers, when ordered to do so, only managed to arouse the suspicion of the officer that
his flight out of the country, scheduled on 13 May 1989. From Sagada, accused took a accused was trying to hide his identity. For is it not a regular norm for an innocent man,
Skyline bus. who has nothing to hide from the authorities, to readily present his identification papers
when required to do so?
At about 8: 00 o'clock in the morning of that same day (11 May 1989), Captain
Alen Vasco, the Commanding Officer of the First Regional Command (NARCOM) The receipt of information by NARCOM that a Caucasian coming from Sagada
stationed at Camp Dangwa, ordered his men to set up a temporary checkpoint at had prohibited drugs in his possession, plus the suspicious failure of the accused to
Kilometer 14, Acop, Tublay, Mountain Province, for the purpose of checking all vehicles produce his passport, taken together as a whole, led the NARCOM officers to
coming from the Cordillera Region. The order to establish a checkpoint in the said area reasonably believe that the accused was trying to hide something illegal from the
was prompted by persistent reports that vehicles coming from Sagada were authorities. From these circumstances arose a probable cause which justified the
transporting marijuana and other prohibited drugs. Moreover, information was received warrantless search that was made on the personal effects of the accused. In other
by the Commanding Officer of NARCOM, that same morning, that a Caucasian coming words, the acts of the NARCOM officers in requiring the accused to open his pouch bag
from Sagada had in his possession prohibited drugs.2 and in opening one of the wrapped objects found inside said bag (which was
discovered to contain hashish) as well as the two (2) travelling bags containing two (2)
The group set up a checkpoint at the designated area at about 10:00 o'clock in teddy bears with hashish stuffed inside them, were prompted by accused's own attempt
the morning and inspected all vehicles coming from the Cordillera Region. to hide his identity by refusing to present his passport, and by the information received
At about 1:30 o'clock in the afternoon, the bus where accused was riding was by the NARCOM that a Caucasian coming from Sagada had prohibited drugs in his
stopped. Sgt. Fider and CIC Galutan boarded the bus and announced that they were possession. To deprive the NARCOM agents of the ability and facility to act
members of the NARCOM and that they would conduct an inspection. The two (2) accordingly, including, to search even without warrant, in the light of such
NARCOM officers started their inspection from the front going towards the rear of the circumstances, would be to sanction impotence and ineffectiveness in law enforcement,
bus. Accused who was the sole foreigner riding the bus was seated at the rear thereof. to the detriment of society.
During the inspection, CIC Galutan noticed a bulge on accused's waist.
Suspecting the bulge on accused's waist to be a gun, the officer asked for accused's
passport and other identification papers. When accused failed to comply, the officer Manalili v CA
required him to bring out whatever it was that was bulging on his waist. The bulging (stop and frisk)
object turned out to be a pouch bag and when accused opened the same bag, as
ordered, the officer noticed four (4) suspicious-looking objects wrapped in brown At about 2:10 PM on April 11, 1988, Police Anti-Narcotics Unit of Kalookan City
packing tape, prompting the officer to open one of the wrapped objects. The wrapped conducted surveillance along A. Mabini Street, in front of the Kalookan City Cemetery.
objects turned out to contain hashish, a derivative of marijuana. This was done after receiving information that drug addicts were roaming around said
area.
Thereafter, accused was invited outside the bus for questioning. But before he alighted
from the bus, accused stopped to get two (2) travelling bags from the luggage carrier. Upon reaching the cemetery, the policemen chanced upon a male person, the
petitioner, in front of the cemetery who appeared high on drugs. The petitioner had
Upon stepping out of the bus, the officers got the bags and opened them. A teddy bear reddish eyes and was walking in a swaying manner.
was found in each bag. Feeling the teddy bears, the officer noticed that there were
bulges inside the same which did not feel like foam stuffing. It was only after the officers Petitioner was trying to avoid the policemen, but the officers were able to introduce
had opened the bags that accused finally presented his passport. themselves and asked him what he was holding in his hands. Petitioner resisted.
Policeman Espiritu asked him if he could see what the petitioner had in his hands. The
Accused was then brought to the headquarters of the NARCOM at Camp Dangwa, La petitioner showed his wallet and allowed the officer to examine it. Policeman Espiritu
Trinidad, Benguet for further investigation. At the investigation room, the officers found suspected crushed marijuana residue inside. He kept the wallet and its marijuana
opened the teddy bears and they were found to also contain hashish. contents and took petitioner to headquarters to be further investigated.
Seeking the reversal of the decision of the trial court finding him guilty of the crime The suspected marijuana was sent to the NBI Forensic Chemistry Section for analysis.
charged, accused argues that the search of his personal effects was illegal because it
was made without a search warrant and, therefore, the prohibited drugs which were Issue: Whether or not the search and seizure of the suspected marijuana is
discovered during the illegal search are not admissible as evidence against him. unreasonable, and hence inadmissible as evidence.

ISSUE Held: Stop-and-frisk has already been adopted as another exception to the general rule
against a search without a warrant. In Posadas vs. Court of Appeals ,[24] the Court held
HELD: It must be observed that, at first, the NARCOM officers merely conducted a that there are many instances where a search and seizure can be effected without
routine check of the bus (where accused was riding) and the passengers therein, and necessarily being preceded by an arrest, one of which is stop-and-frisk. In said case,
no extensive search was initially made. It was only when one of the officers noticed a members of the Integrated National Police of Davao stopped petitioner, who was
bulge on the waist of accused, during the course of the inspection, that accused was carrying a buri bag and acting suspiciously. They found inside petitioners bag one .38-
required to present his passport. The failure of accused to present his identification cal. revolver with two rounds of live ammunition, two live ammunitions for a .22-cal. gun
and a tear gas grenade. In upholding the legality of the search, the Court said that to cartons of M-16 ammunition, five bundles of C-4 dynamites, M-shells of different
require the police officers to search the bag only after they had obtained a search calibers, and "molotov" bombs inside one of the rooms belonging to a certain Col.
warrant might prove to be useless, futile and much too late under the circumstances. In Matillano which is located at the right portion of the building. Sgt. Oscar Obenia, the first
such a situation, it was reasonable for a police officer to stop a suspicious individual one to enter the Eurocar building, saw appellant De Gracia inside the office of Col.
briefly in order to determine his identity or to maintain the status quo while obtaining Matillano, holding a C-4 and suspiciously peeping through a door. De Gracia was the
more information, rather than to simply shrug his shoulders and allow a crime to occur. only person then present inside the room. A uniform with the nametag of Col. Matillano
was also found. As a result of the raid, the team arrested appellant, as well as Soprieso
In the case at hand, Patrolman Espiritu and his companions observed during their Verbo and Roberto Jimena who were janitors at the Eurocar building. They were then
surveillance that appellant had red eyes and was wobbling like a drunk along the made to sign an inventory, written in Tagalog, of the explosives and ammunition
Caloocan City Cemetery, which according to police information was a popular hangout confiscated by the raiding team. No search warrant was secured by the raiding team
of drug addicts. From his experience as a member of the Anti-Narcotics Unit of the because, according to them, at that time there was so much disorder considering that
Caloocan City Police, such suspicious behavior was characteristic of drug addicts who the nearby Camp Aguinaldo was being mopped up by the rebel forces and there was
were high. The policemen therefore had sufficient reason to stop petitioner to simultaneous firing within the vicinity of the Eurocar office, aside from the fact that the
investigate if he was actually high on drugs. courts were consequently closed. The group was able to confirm later that the owner of
Eurocar office is a certain Mr. Gutierrez and that appellant is supposedly a "boy"
therein.
PEOPLE vs.ROLANDO DE GRACIA
HELD: II. The next question that may be asked is whether or not there was a valid
(Under exigent and emergency cirmustances) search and seizure in this case.
The incidents involved in this case took place at the height of the coup d' etat staged in It is admitted that the military operatives who raided the Eurocar Sales Office were not
December, 1989 by ultra-rightist elements headed by the Reform the Armed Forces armed with a search warrant at that time. 15 The raid was actually precipitated by
Movement-Soldiers of the Filipino People (RAM-SFP) against the Government. intelligence reports that said office was being used as headquarters by the
RAM. 16 Prior to the raid, there was a surveillance conducted on the premises wherein
Accused-appellant Rolando de Gracia was charged in two separate informations for
the surveillance team was fired at by a group of men coming from the Eurocar building.
illegal possession of ammunition and explosives in furtherance of rebellion.
When the military operatives raided the place, the occupants thereof refused to open
The records show that in the early morning of December 1, 1989, Maj. Efren Soria of the door despite requests for them to do so, thereby compelling the former to break into
the Intelligence Division, National Capital Region Defense Command, was on board a the office. 17 The Eurocar Sales Office is obviously not a gun store and it is definitely
brown Toyota car conducting a surveillance of the Eurocar Sales Office located at not an armory or arsenal which are the usual depositories for explosives and
Epifanio de los Santos Avenue in Quezon City, together with his team composed of ammunition. It is primarily and solely engaged in the sale of automobiles. The presence
Sgt. Crispin Sagario, M/Sgt. Ramon Briones, S/Sgt. Henry Aquino, one S/Sgt. Simon of an unusual quantity of high-powered firearms and explosives could not be justifiably
and a Sgt. Ramos. The surveillance, which actually started on the night of November or even colorably explained. In addition, there was general chaos and disorder at that
30, 1989 at around 10:00 P.M., was conducted pursuant to an intelligence report time because of simultaneous and intense firing within the vicinity of the office and in
received by the division that said establishment was being occupied by elements of the the nearby Camp Aguinaldo which was under attack by rebel forces. 18 The courts in
RAM-SFP as a communication command post. the surrounding areas were obviously closed and, for that matter, the building and
houses therein were deserted.
Sgt. Crispin Sagario, the driver of the car, parked the vehicle around ten to fifteen
meters away from the Eurocar building near P. Tuazon Street, S/Sgt. Henry Aquino had Under the foregoing circumstances, it is our considered opinion that the instant case
earlier alighted from the car to conduct his surveillance on foot. A crowd was then falls under one of the exceptions to the prohibition against a warrantless search. In the
gathered near the Eurocar office watching the on-going bombardment near Camp first place, the military operatives, taking into account the facts obtaining in this case,
Aguinaldo. After a while, a group of five men disengaged themselves from the crowd had reasonable ground to believe that a crime was being committed. There was
and walked towards the car of the surveillance team. At that moment, Maj. Soria, who consequently more than sufficient probable cause to warrant their action. Furthermore,
was then seated in front, saw the approaching group and immediately ordered Sgt. under the situation then prevailing, the raiding team had no opportunity to apply for and
Sagario to start the car and leave the area. As they passed by the group, then only six secure a search warrant from the courts. The trial judge himself manifested that on
meters away, the latter pointed to them, drew their guns and fired at the team, which December 5, 1989 when the raid was conducted, his court was closed. 19 Under such
attack resulted in the wounding of Sgt. Sagario on the right thigh. Nobody in the urgency and exigency of the moment, a search warrant could lawfully be dispensed
surveillance team was able to retaliate because they sought cover inside the car and with.
they were afraid that civilians or bystanders might be caught in the cross-fire.
As a consequence, at around 6:30 A.M. of December 5, 1989, a searching team
composed of F/Lt. Virgilio Babao as team leader, M/Sgt. Lacdao, Sgt. Magallion, Sgt. HIZON, et. al. Vs.COURT OF APPEALS
Patricio Pacatang, and elements of the 16th Infantry Battalion under one Col. delos (Searches of vessel)
Santos raided the Eurocar Sales Office. They were able to find and confiscate six
The accused crew members and fishermen of F/B Robinson owned by First Fishermen
Fishing Industries, Inc., represented by Richard Hizon were apprehended by SPO3
Romulo Enriquez, and the members of the Task Force BantayDagat for allegedly
fishing in the shoreline of coastal waters of Puerto Princesa, Palawan, with the use of
obnoxious or poisonous substance (sodium cyanide), of more or less one (1) ton of
assorted live fishes. Such acts constitute an offense of Illegal Fishing with the use of
obnoxious or poisonous substance penalized under PD No. 704, the Fisheries Decree
of 1975. A day following the arrest, random samples of fish from the fish cage of F/B
Robinson were gathered for laboratory examination. The specimens were brought to
the NBI sub-office to determine the method of catching the same for record or
evidentiary purposes. The NBI Forensic Chemist conducted two tests on the fish
samples and found that they contained sodium cyanide.
The trial court convicted the petitioners of the offense charged and CA affirmed the
decision, hence this petition.
ISSUE: Whether the fish specimen, which yielded a positive result to the test of the
presence of sodium cyanide, are admissible being illegally seized on the occasion of
warrantless search and arrest.
RULING: On the first issue, the court sustained the warrantless arrest and therefore
the evidence obtained was admissible.
Our Constitution proscribes search and seizure and the arrest of persons without a
judicial warrant. As a general rule, any evidence obtained without a judicial warrant is
inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding. The rule is, however, subject to certain
exceptions. Some of these are: (1) a search incident to a lawful of arrest; (2) seizure of
evidence in plain view; (3) search of a moving motor vehicle; and (4) search in violation
of customs laws.
Search and seizure without search warrant of vessels and aircrafts for violations of
customs laws have been the traditional exception to the constitutional requirement of a
search warrant. It is rooted on the recognition that a vessel and an aircraft, like motor
vehicles, can be quickly moved out of the locality or jurisdiction in which the search
warrant must be sought and secured. Yielding to this reality, judicial authorities have
not required a search warrant of vessels and aircrafts before their search and seizure
can be constitutionally effected.
The same exception ought to apply to seizures of fishing vessels and boats breaching
our fishery laws. These vessels are normally powered by high-speed motors that
enable them to elude arresting ships of the Philippine Navy, the Coast Guard and other
government authorities enforcing our fishery laws.
We thus hold as valid the warrantless search on the F/B Robinson, a fishing boat
suspected of having engaged in illegal fishing. The fish and other evidence seized in
the course of the search were properly admitted by the trial court. Moreover, petitioners
failed to raise the issue during trial and hence, waived
their right to question any irregularity that may have attended the said search and
seizure.