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G.R. No. 140128
June 6, 2001



Sometime Sept 7, 1994, Leonida Umacob, a public school, teacher went to the
office of Mr. Rolando P. Suase to follow up her request for transfer to a
different district. Therein, Arnold Mollaneda, school Division Superintendent,
after entertaining her request hugged her, embraced her, kissed her nose and
lip in a torrid manner, and mashed her breast. Mollaneda did these acts for
several times then warned Umacob not to tell the incident to anybody.

Umacob reported the incident to the police station and filed a complaint for
acts of lasciviousness before the Municipal Trial Court. She also filed an
administrative complaint as well with the Civil Service Commission - Regional
Office XI, Davao City (CSC-RO XI). She furnished the Department of Education,
Culture and Sports - Regional Office XI, Davao City (DECS-RO XI) a copy of her

A DECS investigating committee was formed, which later recommended to the

DECS Regional Director "the dropping of the case" for lack of merit.
Meanwhile, the case before the CSC was heard before Atty. Anacleto Buena,
which hearing was attended by both parties and their counsel. CSC found
Mollaneda guilty, which was affirmed by the Court of Appeals. Thus Mollaneda
elevated the case to the SC. Mollaneda alleges that 1) Umacob was guilty of
forum shopping, 2) He was denied due process, and 3) witnesses' testimonies
were hearsay. Pending the SC case, the Municipal Trial Court dismissed the case
of acts of lasciviousness.


1) Whether or not Umacob was guilty of forum shopping;

2) Whether or not court erred in giving weight to witnesses' testimonies; and
3) Whether or not dismissal of the case in the MTC merits dismissal of the CSC.


1) No. With regard to the DECS and CSC, DECS was just furnished a copy of
the complaint - it was not filed before the DECS. The resolution of DECS was
just a recommendatory resolution. With regard to the filing of the case both in
the CSC and the court, the case filed before the CSC is an administrative case
while that before the court is a criminal case, thus it does not constitute forum

2) No. The witnesses' testimonies were offered not to prove its truth, but
merely to prove that Umacob told the witnesses what transpired in the office.
What was given more credence was the testimony of Umacob which was
straight and replete with details consistent with human nature.

3) No. Long-ingrained in our jurisprudence is the rule that the dismissal of a

criminal case against an accused who is a respondent in an administrative case
on the ground of insufficiency of evidence does not foreclose the
administrative proceeding against him or give him a clean bill of health in all
respects. In dismissing the case, the MTC is simply saying that the prosecution
was unable to prove the guilt of the respondent beyond reasonable doubt, a
condition sine qua non for conviction because of the presumption of innocence
which the Constitution guarantees an accused. However, in administrative
proceedings, the quantum of proof required is only substantial evidence, which
the court finds in this case.