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REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES

REGIONAL TRIAL COURT


11TH JUDICIAL REGION
BRANCH 20
DIGOS CITY, DAVAO DEL SUR

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES,


Plaintiff,
-

versus

Crim. Case No. 101001-2015


For: KIDNAPPING FOR RANSOM
WITH MURDER

URIEL PIETER PABALAN,


Accused.
x ----------------------------------------------- x

DEMURRER TO EVIDENCE
The Accused URIEL PIETER PABALAN, through the undersigned counsel, most
respectfully submits its Demurrer to Evidence and avers:
BASIS FOR THE DEMURRER
It is incumbent upon the prosecution to adduce evidence sufficient to prove
beyond reasonable doubt (a) the commission of the crime, and (b) the precise degree of
participation therein by the accused (Gutib vs. Court of Appeals, 312 SCRA 365). The
charges against an accused must be dismissed if there is no competent or sufficient
evidence adduced that would sustain the charges against him, should the same be
raised in a demurrer to the evidence. Section 23, Rule 119 of the Revised Rules of
Criminal Procedure provides:
Sec. 23 After the prosecution rests its case, the court may dismiss the action on
the ground of insufficiency of evidence (1) on its own initiative after giving the
prosecution the opportunity to be heard or (2) upon demurrer to evidence filed by the
accused with or without leave of court.
x x x
It is well-settled rule that conviction for a criminal offense should be based on
clear and positive evidence and not on mere assumption. (Gaerlan vs. CA 179 SCRA
20). The burden lies upon the prosecution to prove the guilt of the accused beyond
reasonable doubt rather that upon the accused to prove that he is in fact innocent.
(People vs. Lati, 184 SCRA 336). Failing in this, the presumption of innocence will
prevail. (Sec. 1 (a) Rule 115).
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ARGUMENTS/DISCUSSION
The witnesses presented by the prosecution failed to sufficiently prove in court
that: (1) there was unlawful restraint of freedom against Ms. VIRGINIA ABIL, and (2) no
evidence was presented by the prosecution to positively identify Mr. Pabalan as the one
responsible for the death of Ms. Abil, other than the self-serving testimony of Traffic
Enforcer Mikaelo Florentino.
The witnesses presented by the prosecution namely, Marx Yap and Joseph
Madriaga did not allege and failed to prove that there was unlawful restraint of freedom
against Ms. Abil. As a matter of fact, there testimonies only falls squarely on the alleged
waiting of a certain person to deliver the money. Nothing was ever shown that there was
no freedom of actions. What is more dubious is that if indeed there was kidnapping, Mr.
Yap and Mr. Madriaga have passed several Police Headquarters and Checkpoints
which could have easily helped them, but they deliberately did not seek any help and
assistance from the Police. It can also be noted that both of their testimonies are
extremely contradictory and inconsistent, sufficient to doubt their credibility. Mr. Yap
mentioned that he dropped them at Felcris Toril, while Mr. Madriaga claims that they
flagged him at St. Peters Toril. Such inconsistency is grave as it refers to distance
which is relatively far when traversed through walking. If indeed the allegaions were
true, help could have been easily obtained as Toril is a crowded place. Furthermore,
there were no witnesses who could possibly testify with the alleged ransom, other than
the self-serving and speculative testimonies of Ms. Babor. Just because Ms. Abil was
uneasy during the phone conversation with Ms. Babor would it translate to the former
having been kidnapped. In other words, the element of kidnapping was not sufficiently
proved and that there was no witness at all who had seen the alleged taking, murder
and carrying away of the cash money. Moreover, no evidence was presented in court
other than the self-serving testimonies of the witnesses.
Noteworthy is the fact that the husband of the victim did not testify to corroborate
his complaint-affidavit. Hence, the basis of the complainant in charging the accused for
kidnapping for ransom with murder is not substantiated considering that it is purely
speculative and have no probative value whether objected to or not. In addition, the
whole complaint stemmed from the phone call made by Mr. Yap to Mr. Abil, which
without a doubt holds no water. Considering that during the entire time, based on the
affidavits of the witnesses, Ms. Abil had complete and absolute access with her phone.
If indeed the allegations were true, it should have been her who contacted Mr. Abil. In
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criminal cases the accused shall enjoy the right of being confronted with the witnesses
testifying against him and to cross-examine them. Moreover the court is without
opportunity to test the credibility of hearsay statements by observing the demeanor of
the person who supposedly made them (20 Am. Jur. 400-401; cited at 7-1, Francisco,
Revised Rules of Court, 1973 ed., p. 437). People vs. MeloSantos, 245 SCRA 569,
July 3, 1995.
PRAYE R
WHEREFORE, premises considered, it is respectfully prayed that the Honorable
Court that this Demurrer to Evidence be granted and that the criminal charge of
Kidnapping for Ransom with Murder against the accused URIEL PIETER PABALAN be
DISMISSED.
Other reliefs, just and equitable, are likewise prayed for.
Digos City, Davao del Sur, Philippines, May 6, 2015.
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
Public Attorneys Office
Hall of Justice, Digos City.
By:
ATTY. JAY ALBERT UY
Public Attorney II
NOTICE OF HEARING
Hon. Armelen Casalan
Assistant City Prosecutor
Clerk of Court
RTC 20
Greetings!
Please submit the foregoing Demurrer to Evidence for the approval and
consideration of the Honorable Court on 5 May 2015 at 8:30 a.m.
JAY ALBERT UY
Copy Furnished:
Hon. Armelen Casalan
Assistant City Prosecutor