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Republic of the Philippines

COURT OF APPEALS
National Capital Judicial Region
Manila

PEDRO BATONGBUHAY, a.k.a


“PETE LIVINGSTONE”,
Plaintiff,

CA-GR. No. 4444


-versus-
For: Specific Performance
With Damages

PITAK REALTY, INC.,


represented by its Chairman,
GLORIA BATONGBUHAY-
GRACIA,
Defendant.

x---------------------------------------x

BRIEF FOR THE PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT


PLAINTIFF -APPELANTS, by counsel, unto this Honorable Court respectfully submit
their Brief, in support of their appeal from the Decision dated 03 May 2018 of the
Regional Trial Court of Baguio City, Branch 4, in Civil Case No.4, and state:

I. THE PARTIES

Plaintiff-Appellant, PEDRO BATONGBUHAY, a.k.a “PETE LIVINGSTONE”,


is a shareholder and a director of the defendant-appellee, tasked to manage the
affairs of which from the year 1995 to 2006.

Defendants-Appellee, PITAK REALTY, INC., is a corporation duly registered


and incorporated under the laws of the Philippines, with the address of No. 23
Mapukpukaw Street, Baguio City.
II. STATEMENT OF THE CASE

This is an ordinary appeal under Rule 41 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure
filed by the herein Plaintiff-Appellant (brevity) PEDRO BATONGBUHAY, a.k.a “PETE
LIVINGSTONE”, against Defendant-Appellee PITAK REALTY, INC. seeking to SET
ASIDE and REVERSE the Decision dated 03 May 2018 of the Regional Trial Court
of Baguio City, Branch 4, in Civil Case No.4 entitled, “PEDRO BATONGBUHAY,
a.k.a “PETE LIVINGSTONE” vs. PITAK REALTY, INC., represented by its
Chairman, GLORIA BATONGBUHAY- GRACIA.”

In the appealed Decision dated 03 May 2018, the court a quo rendered
judgment against the plaintiff-appellant as follow:

“WHEREFORE, judgment is hereby rendered partially in favor of the


plaintiff, ordering the defendant to indorse the one corporate share of the “A”
Club SPA and to deliver the title to Unit 4 of the Lipat Bahay Condominium.
The defendant is likewise ordered to pay FIFTY THOUSAND PESOS (P
50,000.00) as attorney’s fees and expenses of litigation.”

A Complaint for Specific Performance was filed by the Plaintiff-appellant


pursuant to Board Resolution 12-31-01 Series of 2008 dated December 31,
2008against herein Defendant-Appellee, where it prayed for judgment in its favor,
asking the court to order the defendant:

1. To compel the defendant to pay the plaintiff FOUR MILLION


PESOS (P4, 000,000) in lieu of the 7 hectare agricultural
land and Unit 3 of Lipat Bahay Condominium that can no
longer be delivered and transferred to Mr. Pedro
Batongbuhay’s name;

2.To order the defendant to transfer and deliver the properties


subject of said board resolution specifically: 1 Units 1, 2,
and 4 of Lipat Bahay Condominium.

3. To compel the defendant to cause the registration in the


Stock and Transfer Book of “A” Club SPA its 1 corporate
share under the name of the plaintiff.
4. To order defendant to pay moral damages amounting to ONE
HUNDRED THOUSAND PESOS (P100,000.00);

5. To order the defendant to pay attorney’s fees ONE


HUNDRED THOUSAND PESOS (P 100,000.00) plus
FIVE THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED PESOS (P 5,500.00)
per court appearance; and
6. To pay cost of the suit.1

Defendants-appellee’s answer denies the claim of the plaintiff. The


defendant alleged that the following properties were actually delivered to the
plaintiff:

a. 1 corporate share of “A” Club SPA;

b. Titles of Unit 1 and 2 of Lipat Bahay Condominium;

c. Owner’s Copy of OCT No. 03;

d. Notarized Deed of Sale executed by Daga in favor of


Pitak Realty Inc. over the land covered by OCT No.
03.
The defendant as a counterclaim alleged that it was constrained to secure the
services of the undersigned counsel. As such, the plaintiff shall be made to pay the
amount of not less than FIFTY THOUSAND PESOS (P50,000.00) by way of
ATTORNEY’S FEES, FIVE THOUSAND PESOS (P5,000.00) for every court
appearance of counsel, and shall likewise pay the cost of the suit defendant raise
the defense of the delivery of the Owner’s Copy and the Notarized Deed of Sale of
the land covered by OCT No. 03, as well as the introduction of improvements
thereon by the plaintiff purport that the defendant shall not be liable for the monetary
equivalent of the land covered by OCT No. 03 amounting to FOUR MILLION PESOS
(P 4,000,000.00), and that the obligation of the defendant with regard to the 1
corporate share should only be the indorsement of such share to “A” Club Spa, and
not the transfer thereof to the plaintiff.2

sought the dismissal of the Complaint, and by way of compulsory counterclaims,


sought payment by plaintiff of the following amounts: Five Hundred Thousand Pesos
(P500,000.00) as and by way of moral and exemplary damages; One Hundred
Thousand Pesos (P100,000.00), as and by way of attorney’s fees; and Fifty
Thousand Pesos (P50,000.00) as and by way of litigation expenses.3

Pre-trial4 and trial of the case ensued, with the parties presenting their
respective testimonial and documentary evidence. Plaintiff-appellee presented
witnesses in the persons of Ayne and Alfred Ramos, while Harvey and Selina Santos
testified for the defendants. The parties were also ordered to file their respective

1
Complaint dated 17 January 2017, pp. 6-7; Rollo, pp. 45-50
2
Defendants’ Answer (with Compulsory Counterclaims) dated 25 January 2017, pp. 3-4; Rollo, pp.57-61.
3
Defendants’ Answer (with Compulsory Counterclaims) dated 25 October 2006, pp. 3-4; Rollo, pp.57-61.
4
Pre-trial Order was issued on 22 February 2008, After attempts at setting the case proved futile, the case
was set for initial trial on 16 May 2008.
Formal Offer of Exhibits as well as the Comments/Objections thereto, and the court
accordingly ruled upon the same in its Orders dated 29 September 20085 and 15
April 2009.6

Defendants-appellant sought a reconsideration of the assailed Decision by


filing a Motion for Reconsideration dated 08 August 20097 where they averred,
among others that: (a) the evidence presented by plaintiff was insufficient to justify
the decision; (b) the monetary award was excessive; and (c) they should be granted
damages and attorney’s fees.

Plaintiff-appellee filed its Comment/Opposition dated 04 September 20098 to


the Motion for Reconsideration filed by defendants.

On 18 September 2009, the court rendered the Assailed Order denying the
Motion for Reconsideration filed by the defendants-appellant.9

5
Order dated 29 September 2008, Rollo, p. 218.
6
Order dated 15 April 2009, Rollo, p. 303.
7
Motion for Reconsideration dated 08 August 2009, Rollo, pp. 348-354.
8
Comment/Opposition dated 04 September 2009, Rollo, pp.358-363.
9
Order dated 18 September 2009, Rollo, pp.364-365.