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(1) Ejercito v.

Sandiganbayan, 509 SCRA 190 (2006)


FACTS: -In the case of Pp. v. Estrada] Special Prosecution Panel (composed of the Ombudsman, the Special Prosecutor,Deputy Special Prosecutor, Asst. Ombudsman, Special Prosecution III and SP II), filed before Sandiganbayan a request for the issuance of subpoena duces tecum directing the president of Export and Industry Bank (EIB) or his/her representative to produce documents relating to the acts therein specified. -The Special Prosecution Panel likewise requested for issuance of Subpoena Duces Tecum / Ad testificandum directed to the authorized representative of Equitable-PCI Bank to produce statements of accounts in the name of Jose Velarde and testify thereon. -Estrada, claiming to have learned from the media that the Special Prosecution Panel had requested for the issuance of subpoenas the examination of bank accounts belonging to him, attended the hearing of the case andfiled before the Sandiganbayan a letter of opposition and requested that he be given time to retain the services of a lawyer and prayed that the issuance of the subpoena be held in abeyance for at least 10 days to enable him to take appropriate legal steps. -In open court, Associate Justice Sandoval of Sandiganbayan advised Estrada that his remedy was to file a motion to quash, for which he was given up to 12nn the following day. -Estrada unassisted by counsel filed a motion to quash claiming that his bank accounts are covered by RA 1405 and do not fall under any of the exceptions stated therein. -Other requests for issuance of Subpoenas were filed, and thus issued, hence, motion to quash was filed by Estrada but was denied by Sandiganbayan. Sandiganbayan further denied Motion for reconsideration. ISSUES:

1. Whether or not Estradas Account is covered by the term deposit as used in RA 1405.
2. Whether or not Estradas Trust and Savings accounts are excepted from the protection of RA 1405. HELD: -An examination of RA 1405 shows that the term deposits used therein is to be understood broadly and not limited to accounts which give rise to a creditor-debtor relationship between the depositor and the bank. If the money deposited under an account may be used by banks for authorized loans to third persons, then such account, regardless of whether it creates a creditor-debtor relationship between the depositor and the bank falls under the category of accounts which the law precisely seeks to protect. The phrase of whatever nature proscribes any restrictive interpretation of deposits. RA 1405 applies not only to money which are invested, such as those placed in a trust account. -These accounts are no longer protected by the Secrecy of Bank Deposits Law, there being two exceptions applicable in this case namely: (1) the examination of bank accounts is upon order of a competent court in cases of bribery or dereliction of duty of public officials, and (2) the money deposited or invested is the subject matter of the litigation. Exception 1 applies since the plunder case pending against former President Estrada is analogous to bribery or dereliction of duty, while exception 2 applies because the money deposited in Estradas bank accounts is said to form part of the subject matter of the same plunder case.

(2) Union Bank of the Philippines v. CA, 321 SCRA 563 (1999)
FACTS: - A check in the amount of One Million Pesos (P1,000,000.00) was drawn against Account No. 0111-01854-8 with Allied Bank payable to the order of one Jose Ch. Alvarez. The payee deposited the check with Union Bank who credited the P1,000,000.00 to the account of Mr. Alvarez. -Union Bank sent the check for clearing through the Philippine Clearing House Corporation (PCHC). When the check was presented for payment, a clearing discrepancy was committed by Union Banks clearing staff when the amount of One Million Pesos (P1,000,000.00) was erroneously under-encoded to One Thousand Pesos (P1,000.00) only. -Union Bank only discovered the under-encoding almost a year later. -Thus, Union Bank Notified Allied Bank of the discrepancy by way of a charge slip for Nine Hundred Ninety-NineThousand Pesos (P999,000.00) for automatic debiting against the account of Allied Bank. -The latter, however, refused to accept the charge slip since [the] transaction was completed per your [Union Banks] original instruction and clients account is now insufficiently funded. -Subsequently, Union Bank filed a complaint against Allied Bank before the PCHC Arbitration Committee (Arbicom) ,alleging that Allied Bank should have informed it of the under coding pursuant to the Section 25 of PCHC handbook which states that: The receiving bank should inform the erring bank about the under coding of the amount not later than 10 am of the following clearing day. -The judgment on the arbitration case was held in abeyance pending the resolution of the petition filed by Union Bank. -RTC, affirmed by CA dismissed the petition holding that case of Union Bank does not fall under any of the exceptions to warrant a disclosure of or inquiry into the ledger/books of account in dispute. -CA held that the case was not one where the money deposited is the subject matter of the litigation, particularly nowhere in Union Banks complaint does it mention of the amount it seeks to recover from the Account itself, but seeks of P999,000 only as an incident of its alleged opportunity losses and interest as a result of its own employees admitted error in encoding the check. -Hence, this petition. ISSUE: -Whether or not the case at bar falls under the last exception. HELD: -A collecting bank which sued the drawee bank to recover the deficiency between the amount credited to the account of the depositor and the amount obtained from the drawee bank because the latter had erroneously undercoded the amount of the check it presented for clearing from P1M to P1,000 is not entitled to examine the account of the drawer of the check, because the money in the account of the drawer is not the subject matter of the litigation. The collecting bank was only fishing for information so it could determine the culpability of the drawee bank and the amounts of damages it could recover from the latter. It does not seek the recovery of the very money contained in the deposit. The subject matter of the dispute may be the amount of P999,000 that the collecting bank seeks from the drawee bank as a result of the latters alleged failure to inform the former of the discrepancy ; but it is not the P999,000 deposited in the drawers account. By the terms of RA 1405, the money deposited itself should be the subject matter of the litigation.

(3) Sia vs. CA


FACTS: Sia rented a safety deposit box of Security Bank to place his stamp collection but those stamp collection were damaged by flood the prompted Sia to file a case before the trial court which favored Sia. The CA reversed. ISSUE: Whether or not the bank is liable for damages. HELD: Yes. The bank is liable for damages for its failure to notify immediately to recover the stamps when the flood water entered the room where those stamps were located and the stipulation that the bank is not a depositary and not liable for the contents of the safety deposit box is void for being contrary to law and public policy.

(4) Marquez v. Desierto, 359 SCRA 772 (2001);Office of the Ombudsman v. Ibay, 364 SCRA 281 (2001)
FACTS: - Marquez received an Order from the Ombudsman Aniano A. Desierto, to produce several bank documents for purposes of inspection in camera relative to various accounts maintained at Union Bank of the Philippines, Julia Vargas Branch, where Marquez is the branch manager. The accounts to be inspected are involved in a case pending with the Ombudsman entitled, Fact-Finding and Intelligence Bureau (FFIB) v. Amado Lagdameo, et. al. -Marquez failed to comply with the order due to the fact that the bank could not identify the account since the checks were issued in cash or bearer. -OMB found the explanation unacceptable and warned Marquez that her failure to comply would subject her in pain of contempt and prosecution for obstruction. -Instead of complying, Marquez together with Union Bank filed a petition for declaratory relief seeking a definite ruling as regards her rights under RA 1405 and the power of OMB to inspect bank deposit under Sec. 15 RA6770 -Prayer for TRO was denied by TC. -OMB moved to dismiss but was denied.

ISSUE: -Whether or not the order of the OMB to have an in camera inspection of the questioned account pending investigation at its office is allowed as an exception to the law on secrecy of bank deposits.

HELD: -Before an in camera inspection may be allowed, there must be a pending case before a court of competent jurisdiction. Further, the account must be clearly identified, the inspection limited to the subject matter of the pending case before the court of competent jurisdiction. The bank personnel and the account holder must be notified to be present during the inspection, and such inspection may cover only the account identified in the pending case. In Union Bank of the Philippines v. Court of Appeals, we held that Section 2 of the Law on Secrecy of Bank Deposits, as amended, declares bank deposits to be absolutely confidential except: (1) In an examination made in the course of a special or general examination of a bank that is specifically authorized by the Monetary Board after being satisfied that there is reasonable ground to believe that a bank fraud or serious irregularity has been or is being committed and that it is necessary to look into the deposit to establish such fraud or irregularity, (2) In an examination made by an independent auditor hired by the bank to conduct its regular audit provided that the examination is for audit purposes only and the results thereof shall be for the exclusive use of the bank, (3) Upon written permission of the depositor, (4) In cases of impeachment, (5) Upon order of a competent court in cases of bribery or dereliction of duty of public officials, or (6) In cases where the money deposited or invested is the subject matter of the litigation In the case at bar, there is yet no pending litigation before any court of competent authority. What is existing is an investigation by the office of the Ombudsman. In short, what the Office of the Ombudsman would wish to do is to fish for additional evidence to formally charge Amado Lagdameo, et. al., with the Sandiganbayan. Clearly, there was no pending case in court which would warrant the opening of the bank account for inspection.

(5) PNB v. Gancayco, 15 SCRA 91 (1965);Filipino Saving and Mortgage Bank v. Purisima, 161 SCRA 576 (1988)
FACTS: -Ernesto Jimenez was the former administrator of the Agricultural Credit and Cooperative Administration (ACCA). -He was investigated for unexplained wealth. -The special prosecutors of DOJ Emilio Gancayco and Florentino Flor required Philippine National Bank to produce at a hearing the records of the bank deposits of Jimenez. -PNB declined to reveal its records invoking RA 1405. -On the other hand, the special prosecutors demanded anew that Eduardo Romualdez, as bank president, produce the records or he would be prosecuted for contempt citing the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (3019). - Because of the threat of prosecution, plaintiffs filed an action for declaratory judgment -. After trial, during which Senator Arturo M. Tolentino, author of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act testified, the court rendered judgment, sustaining the power of the defendants to compel the disclosure of bank accounts of ACCFA Administrator Jimenez. The court said that, by enacting section 8 of, the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, Congress clearly intended to provide an additional ground for the examination of bank deposits. Without such provision, the court added prosecutors would be hampered if not altogether frustrated in the prosecution of those charged with having acquired unexplained wealth while in public office. -PNB appealed the decision. ISSUE: -Whether or not a bank can be compelled to disclosed the records of accounts of a depositor who is under investigation for unexplained wealth. HELD: - While Republic Act No. 1405 provides that bank deposits are "absolutely confidential ... and [therefore] may not be examined, inquired or looked into," except in those cases enumerated therein, the Anti-Graft Law directs in mandatory terms that bank deposits "shall be taken into consideration in the enforcement of this section, notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary." The only conclusion possible is that section 8 of the Anti-Graft Law is intended to amend section 2 of Republic Act No. 1405 by providing additional exception to the rule against the disclosure of bank deposits. - With regard to the claim that disclosure would be contrary to the policy making bank deposits confidential, it is enough to point out that while section 2 of Republic Act 1405 declares bank deposits to be "absolutely confidential,"it nevertheless allows such disclosure in the following instances: (1) Upon written permission of the depositor; (2) In cases of impeachment; (3) Upon order of a competent court in cases of bribery or dereliction of duty of public officials; (4) In cases where the money deposited is the subject matter of the litigation. Cases of unexplained wealth are similar to cases of bribery or dereliction of duty and no reason is seen why these two classes of cases cannot be excepted from the rule making bank deposits confidential. The policy as to one cannot be different from the policy as to the other. This policy express the motion that a public office is a public trust and any person who enters upon its discharge ge does so with the full knowledge that his life, so far as relevant to his duty, is open to public scrutiny.

(6) Mellon Bank, N.A. v. Magsino, 190 SCRA 633 (1990)


FACTS: - Dolores Ventosa requested the transfer of $1,000 from the First National Bank of Moundsville, West Virginia, U.S.A. to Victoria Javier in Manila through the Prudential Bank. Accordingly, the First National Bank requested the petitioner, Mellon Bank, to effect the transfer. -Unfortunately the wire sent by Mellon Bank to Manufacturers Hanover Bank, a correspondent of Prudential Bank, indicated the amount transferred as "US$1,000,000.00" instead of US$1,000.00. Hence Manufacturers Hanover Bank transferred one million dollars less bank charges of $6.30 to the Prudential Bank for the account of Victoria Javier. -Javier opened a new dollar account in the Prudential Bank and deposited $999,943.70. Immediately, Victoria Javier and her husband, Melchor Javier, Jr., made withdrawals from the account, deposited them in several banks only to withdraw them later in an apparent plan to conceal, "launder" and dissipate the erroneously sent amount. -Formal demands of Mellon Bank and Manufacturers Hanover Bank, through Prudential Bank proved futile. -Hence Mellon Bank filed a complaint praying that that the Javiers and each of them who used a portion of said funds be declared as holders of the property in trust for it and later be compelled to transfer legal title and possession. -During trial, Mellon Bank sought to introduce testimonies which revealed in formation on the bank account of various persons whom it believed were responsible for the acquisitions to aid and abet Javiers in dissipating the funds. -The admission of the testimonies were objected to on the ground that it violates RA 140 -Initially the Lower Court conditionally allowed the testimonies. -Said testimonies were moved to be stricken off. -The motion was granted. -Motion for Reconsideration was denied, hence Mellon bank filed the instant petition. HELD: -Republic Act No. 1405 on the secrecy of bank deposits, Section 2 of said law allows the disclosure of bank deposits in cases where the money deposited is the subject matter of the litigation. Inasmuch as Civil is aimed at recovering the amount converted by the Javiers for their own benefit, necessarily, an inquiry into the whereabouts of the illegally acquired amount extends to whatever is concealed by being held or recorded in the name of persons other than the one responsible for the illegal acquisition.

(7) Onate v. Abrogar, 241 SCRA 659 (1995)


FACTS: - Oate offered to sell to Sunlife Assurance Company of Canada treasury bills at a discounted price. -Sunlife paid the price by means of a check payable to Brunner Development Corporation. -Brunner issued to it receipt with the undertaking to deliver the treasury bills to Sunlife. -However, Brunner delivered instead promissory note in which it was made to appear that the transaction was a money placement instead of sale of treasury bills. -Hence, Sunlife sued Oate, Econ and Brunner for the delivery of the treasury bills. -During trial, the judge ordered the examination of the books of accounts and ledgers of Brunner at the Urban Bank and the records of account of Oate at BPI, even orderedPNB to produce the records regarding certain checks deposited in it. -The court orders were based on the allegations of Sunlife that the money paid by it to Brunner was subsequently withdrawn from Urban Bank after it had been deposited by Brunner and then transferred to Oates account in the BPI and to the unnamed account in the PNB. -These orders were contended by Oate as a fishing expedition which the trial court should not have allowed. ISSUE: -Whether or not the examination of the bank account in this case is prohibited by RA 1405. HELD: -The examination of the bank account in which the money paid by an insurance company for treasury bills was deposited is prohibited by RA 1405 even if the insurance company sued the seller of the treasury bills for failure to deliver the treasury bills, for the money is not subject matter of the litigation. -Whether the transaction is considered a sale or money placement does not make the money the subject matter of litigation within the meaning of Sec.2 of RA 1405 which prohibits the disclosure or inquiry into bank deposits except in cases where the money deposited or interested is the subject matter of litigation nor will it matter whether the money was swindled as Sunlife contends -However, since the attachment of the properties was invalid, the examination ordered with such attachment must also be considered invalid.

(8) CHINA BANKING CORP vs. Ortega G.R. No. L-34964 January 31, 1973
FACTS: Petitioner refuses to comply with a court process garnishing the bank deposit of a judgment debtor by invoking the provisions of Republic Act No. 1405 (Secrecy of Bank Deposits Act) which allegedly prohibits the disclosure of any information relative to bank deposits. ISSUE: Whether or not a banking institution may validly refuse to comply with a court process garnishing the bank deposit of a judgment debtor, by invoking the provisions of Republic Act No. 1405. HELD: No. It is sufficiently clear from the foregoing discussion of the conference committee report of the two houses of Congress that the prohibition against examination of or inquiry into a bank deposit under Republic Act 1405 does not preclude its being garnished to insure satisfaction of a judgment. Indeed there is no real inquiry in such a case, and if the existence of the deposit is disclosed the disclosure is purely incidental to the execution process. It is hard to conceive that it was ever within the intention of Congress to enable debtors to evade payment of their just debts, even if ordered by the Court, through the expedient of converting their assets into cash and depositing the same in a bank

(9) BENEDICTO and RIVERA vs. COURT OF APPEALS, [G.R. No. 125359, September 4, 2001]
FACTS: On December 27, 1991, Mrs. Imelda Marcos and Messrs. Benedicto and Rivera were indicted for violation of Section 10 of Circular No. 960 1 in relation to Section 34 of the Central Bank Act (Republic Act No. 265, as amended) in five Informations filed with the Regional Trial Court of Manila. Docketed as Criminal Cases Nos. 91-101879 to 91-101883, the charge sheets alleged that the trio failed to submit reports of their foreign exchange earnings from abroad and/or failed to register with the Foreign Exchange Department of the Central Bank within the period mandated by Circular No. 960. Said Circular prohibited natural and juridical persons from maintaining foreign exchange accounts abroad without prior authorization from the Central Bank.On August 11, 1994, petitioners moved to quash all the Informations filed against them inCriminal Cases Nos. 91-101879 to 91-101883; 91-101884 to 91-101892, and 91-101959 to 91-101969. Their motion was grounded on lack of jurisdiction, forum shopping, absence of a preliminary investigation and extinction of criminal liability with the repeal of Circular No. 960.On September 6, 1994, the trial court denied petitioners' motion. A similar motion filed on May 23, 1994 by Mrs. Marcos seeking to dismiss the dollar-salting cases against her due to the repeal of Circular No. 960 had earlier been denied by the trial court in its order dated June 9,1994. Petitioners then filed a motion for reconsideration, but the trial court likewise denied this motion on October 18, 1994. ISSUES: (1)Whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in denying the Motion to Quash for absence of a valid preliminary investigation.(2)Whether or not the repeal of Central Bank Circular No. 960 and Republic Act No. 265 by Circular No. 1353 and Republic Act No. 7653 respectively, extinguish the criminal liability of petitioners. HELD: (1) NO . Preliminary investigation is not part of the due process guaranteed by the Constitution. It is an inquiry to determine whether there is sufficient ground to engender a well-founded belief that a crime has been committed and the respondent is probably guilty thereof. Instead, the right to a preliminary investigation is personal. It is afforded to the accused by statute, and can be waived, either expressly or by implication. When the records of the case were disclosed to them, in opting to enter their respective pleas to the charges, and filed various motions and pleadings, they are deemed to have made an express waiver of their right to have a preliminary investigation. (2) NO . In the instant case, it must be noted that despite the repeal of Circular No. 960, Circular No. 1353 retained the same reportorial requirement for residents receiving earnings or profits from non-trade foreign exchange transactions. Even the most cursory glance at the repealing circulars, Circular Nos. 1318 and 1353 shows that both contain a saving clause expressly providing that the repeal of Circular No. 960 shall have no effect on pending actions for violation of the latter Circular. A saving clause operates to except from the effect of the repealing law what would otherwise be lost under the new law. In the present case, the respective saving clauses of Circular Nos. 1318 and 1353 clearly manifest the intent to reserve the right of the State to prosecute and punish offenses for violations of the repealed Circular No. 960, where the cases are either pending or under investigation

(10)

China Bank Corporation v. Court of Appeals, 511 SCRA 110 (2006)

FACTS: - Jose Gotianuy accused his daughter Mary Margaret Dee of stealing, among his other properties, US dollar deposits with Citibank N.A. amounting to not less than P35,000,000.00 and US$864,000.00. Mary Margaret Dee received these amounts from Citibank N.A. through checks which she allegedly deposited at China Banking Corporation (China Bank). He likewise accused his son-in-law, George Dee, husband of his daughter, Mary Margaret, of transferring his real properties and shares of stock in George Dees name without any consideration. -Jose Gotianuy, died during the pendency of the case before the trial court. He was substituted by his daughter, Elizabeth Gotianuy Lo. The latter presented the US Dollar checks withdrawn by Mary Margaret Dee from his US dollar placement with Citibank. -Upon motion of Elizabeth Gotianuy Lo, the trial court issued a subpoena to Cristota Labios and Isabel Yap,employees of China Bank, to testify on the case. -China Bank opposed. TC: -The disclosure is only as to the name or whose name the said fund is deposited is not violative of the law CA: -Affirmed TC. The law protects only the deposit itself but not the name of depositor. CBs Contention: -Jose Gotianuy is not the owner of the questioned foreign currency deposit, thus, he cannot invoke the aid of the court in compelling the disclosure of someone elses foreign currency deposit. ISSUE: -Whether or not Jose Gotianuy as co payee of a foreign currency depositor in checks deposited in the account of Mary Margaret Dee is a depositor. HELD: -The law provides that all foreign currency deposits authorized under Republic Act No. 6426, as amended by Sec. 8 is only one exception to the secrecy of foreign currency deposits, that is, disclosure is allowed upon the written permission of the depositor. -As the owner of the funds unlawfully taken and which are undisputably now deposited with China Bank, Jose Gotianuy has the right to inquire into the said deposits. -A depositor, in cases of bank deposits, is one who pays money into the bank in the usual course of business, to be placed to his credit and subject to his check or the beneficiary of the funds held by the bank as trustee. -As CA ruled: Furthermore, it is indubitable that the Citibank checks were drawn against the foreign currency account with Citibank, NA. The monies subject of said checks originally came from the late Jose Gotianuy, the owner of the account. Thus, he also has legal rights and interests in the CBC account where said monies were deposited. More importantly, the Citibank checks readily demonstrate that the late Jose Gotianuy is one of the payees of said checks. Being a co-payee thereof, then he or his estate can be considered as a codepositor of said checks. Ergo, since the late Jose Gotianuy is a co-depositor of the CBC account, then his request for the assailed subpoena is tantamount to an express permission of a depositor for the disclosure of the name of the account holder.,

Renzi C. Abidin LLB III-C