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BLOCK A 2021 | CRIMINAL PROCEDURE | Atty.

Arroyo

investigation lasted for about 5 years and 3 months from the date of the filing of
WEEK 10 CASE DIGESTS the formal complaint. Since the duration of the preliminary investigation is
excessive, it is incumbent then on the prosecution to justify the delay. The
1. Magante v. Sandiganbayan (ANNE) prosecution provided that there were 10 respondents in the complaint led with
July 23, 2018| Velasco, Jr., J. | Rights of accused to have a speedy trial the OMB and each of them was afforded the right to explain themselves and that
the records of the case were allegedly voluminous that entailed considerable
time to study and analyze. However, these ​reasons do not sufficiently explain
PETITIONER​​: Elpidio Tagaan Magante
the more than five-year long preliminary investigation​​. Contrary to the
RESPONDENTS​​: Sandiganbayan (Third Division) and People of the
finding of the Sandiganbayan, there is a hiatus on the part of the Ombudsman
Philippines
during this period. ​Left unsatisfactorily explained, this amounts to a violation
of petitioner's constitutional right to a speedy disposition of case, corollarily
SUMMARY​​: 2 separate Informations for Falsification of Public Documents,
warranting the dismissal of the criminal case against him. ​Magante's ​alleged
and for Splitting of Contracts, were led against Magante and his 5
failure to assert his right is not a veritable ground for the denial of the
co-respondents therein before the Sandiganbayan. Magante led a Motion to
motion in the absence of any motion, pleading, or act on his part that
Dismiss the cases against him on the ground that inordinate delay attended the
contributed to the delay​​. It is not for him to ensure that the wheels of justice
conduct of the preliminary investigation of his alleged crimes, in violation of his
continue to turn but for the State to guarantee that the case is disposed within a
constitutional right to a speedy disposition of cases. The prosecution claimed
reasonable period. It is sufficient that he raised the constitutional infraction prior
that there was neither hiatus, inaction nor any intentional delay on the part of the
to his arraignment before the Sandiganbayan. There could have been ​no grave
Ombudsman and that Magante failed to assert his right to a speedy disposition of
prejudice suffered by the State ​from the delay ​since the criminal charges for
his cases all throughout the proceedings, and, thus, like any other constitutional
falsification of public documents and splitting of contracts are offenses that
right, the same may be waived. The prosecution appropriately explained the
chiefly rely on the presentation of documentary evidence.
circumstances surrounding the drafting of the 2 Informations against the 10
respondents, all of whom were accorded their constitutional right to be heard.
DOCTRINE: SECTION 16, Article III of the 1987 Constitution. All persons
Based thereon, the Sandiganbayan did not find that the proceedings before
shall have the right to a speedy disposition of their cases before all judicial,
Ombudsman were attended by any vexatious, capricious and oppressive delays.
quasi-judicial, or administrative bodies.
The issue here is WON the Sandiganbayan committed grave abuse of discretion
Prevailing jurisprudence on the speedy disposition of cases is sourced from the
amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction in issuing the assailed resolutions
landmark ruling of the US Supreme Court in ​Barker v. Wingo​, wherein a delicate
without regard to the constitutional right of Magante to speedy disposition of the
balancing test was crafted to determine whether or not the right had been
investigation.
violated. A balancing test necessarily compels courts to approach speedy trial
cases on an ad hoc basis. The Court identified 4 factors which courts should
The Court held that there was grave abuse of discretion. The Court adopted the
assess in determining whether a particular defendant has been deprived of his
factors set forth in ​Barker ​(e.g. delay, the reason for the delay, the defendant's
right: length of delay, the reason for the delay, the defendant's assertion of his
assertion of his right, and prejudice to the defendant). Magante’s preliminary
right, and prejudice to the defendant.

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7. The Final Evaluation Report recommended the upgrading of the


FACTS: fact- finding investigation into a criminal and administrative case
1. In the Ombudsman's Resolution dated April 25, 2016, 2 separate before the Ombudsman.
informations for Falsification of Public Documents, and for 8. The Public Assistance and Corruption Prevention Office of the
Splitting of Contracts, were led against Magante and his 5 Deputy Ombudsman for Visayas (PACPO-OMB-Visayas) led a
co-respondents therein on October 7, 2016 before the formal complaint against Magante on January 7, 2011.
Sandiganbayan. 9. The Resolution finding probable cause was only promulgated on
2. Magante led a ​Motion to Dismiss the cases against him on the April 15, 2016 because there were 10 respondents in the complaint
ground that inordinate delay attended the conduct of the and each of them was afforded the right to explain themselves. The
preliminary investigation of his alleged crimes, in violation of records of the case were also voluminous that entailed
his constitutional right to a speedy disposition of cases​​. considerable time to study and analyze.
3. Magante claimed that it took the Ombudsman about 7 years, from 10. The prosecution further claimed that Magante failed to assert his
the commencement of the fact-finding investigation in 2009 up to right to a speedy disposition of his cases all throughout the
2016, to issue its Resolution directing the filing of 2 informations proceedings, and, thus, like any other constitutional right, the same
against him. may be waived.
4. Magante reckoned the period from April 21, 2009, the date of the 11. The Sandiganbayan denied Magante’s Motion to Dismiss for utter
Affidavit and Narrative Audit Report that was submitted by lack of merit and affirmed the prosecution’s findings that the
Aguilar, Regional Director of the Commission on Audit Regional rulings in the cases cited are inapplicable to the cases at bar
Office, which led to the commencement of a fact-finding because of the material differences in their factual milieu.
investigation by the Ombudsman. 12. In contrast to the following cases, the attendant circumstances in
5. Magante also asserted that even if the period were to be counted these cases do not show a deliberate attempt to delay the
from February 15, 2011, which is the date when the Ombudsman proceedings.
issued an Order directing him and his co-respondents therein to a. Tatad- the 3-year delay in terminating the preliminary
submit their respective counter-affidavits, up to the approval of its investigation against him was attended by "political
Resolution, there is still a clear inordinate delay of 5 years and 2 motivations which played a vital role in activating and
months in resolving his case. propelling the prosecutorial process;" and, there was a
6. The prosecution asserted that there was neither hiatus, inaction, departure from the established procedure in conducting
nor any intentional delay on the part of the Ombudsman from the the preliminary investigation and that the issues involved
time that the letter-complaint of Aguilar against Magante was were simple. The present cases involve no imputation of
received by the OMB-Visayas on September 1, 2009, until the any political motivation in the filing of the present
approval of the Final Evaluation Report dated June 30, 2010 by the Informations against Magante.
then Ombudsman Gutierrez on November 18, 2010. b. Roque- no explanation was given why it took almost six
years for the Ombudsman to resolve the complaints

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c. People v. Sandiganbayan- inordinate delay on the part of


the Ombudsman when it resolved a complaint-affidavit ISSUES:
only on April 15, 2008, notwithstanding the fact that it 1. WON the Sandiganbayan committed grave abuse of
was filed on December 23, 2002. discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction in
d. Achangco, Jr- the delay of more than 6 years in resolving issuing the assailed resolutions without regard to the
the complaints was violation of the accused's constitutional right of Magante to speedy disposition of the
constitutional right to due process and speedy disposition investigation? – YES.
of cases for two (2) reasons: [1] the administrative aspect
of the case had already been dismissed; and [2] RATIO:
petitioner's several motions for early resolution and The right to speedy disposition of cases and the Ombudsman's bounden duty
motion to dismiss remained unacted even at the time of to observe the same
the petition for mandamus before the Supreme Court. 1. The constitutional guarantee to speedy disposition of cases was
Here, Magante did not file any motion or letter seeking reproduced verbatim in Article III, Sec. 16 which provides:
the early resolution of the case against him and signifying SECTION 16. All persons shall have the right to a speedy disposition
that he was not waiving his right to its speedy disposition. of their cases before all judicial, quasi-judicial, or administrative bodies.
e. Coscolluela- petitioners were unaware that a preliminary 2. It expanded the speedy trial guarantee afforded to the accused in a
investigation against them was ongoing so the Court ruled criminal proceeding, which was already in place in the 1935
that they could not be faulted for their alleged failure to Constitution.
assert their right to speedy disposition of cases. Here, 3. The 1989 case of ​Tatad w ​ as the first to have applied the provision
Magante was very much aware that there was a pending as a personal right against the conduct of a proceeding, rather than
investigation against him, as in fact he led his counter-a as a constitutional challenge against a statute.
davit before the OMB-Visayas and also lated led a MR of 4. In ​Dansal v. Fernandez​, the right in Article III, Sec. 16 embraces
an adverse Resolution of the Ombudsman. He actively the periods before, during and after trial.
participated in the proceedings before the Ombudsman 5. In Article XI, Sec. 12 of the Constitution, it was stated that the
and failed to assert his right to a speedy disposition of Ombudsman shall act promptly on complaints led in any form or
cases. manner, which was further amplified by Sec. 13 of RA 6770.
13. The prosecution appropriately explained the circumstances 6. However, these provisions do not specify a period for the OMB to
surrounding the drafting of the two 2 Informations against the 10 render its ruling in cases or matters before it. Neither did the
respondents, all of whom were accorded their constitutional right mentioned laws enumerate the criteria in determining what
to be heard. Based thereon, the Sandiganbayan does not find that duration of disposition could be considered as "prompt."
the proceedings before Ombudsman were attended by any 7. The ​lack of statutory definition on what constitutes "prompt"
vexatious, capricious and oppressive delays. action on a complaint opened the gates for judicial interpretation,
14. The petitioner moved for its reconsideration but it was also denied which merely listed factors to consider in treating petitions
for being pro forma and/or lack of merit. invoking the right to speedy disposition of cases.

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with a hasty resolution of cases at the expense of thoroughness and


Attempts in jurisprudence to define "inordinate delay" correctness.
8. Prevailing jurisprudence on the speedy disposition of cases is 14. This duty does not license this Court to a specific period for the
sourced from the landmark ruling of the US Supreme Court in office to resolve the cases and matters before it, lest the Court
Barker v. Wingo​, wherein a delicate balancing test was crafted to encroaches upon the constitutional prerogative of the Ombudsman
determine whether or not the right had been violated. to promulgate its own rules and procedure.
9. A ​balancing test necessarily compels courts to approach speedy 15. The reckoning point when delay starts to run is the date of the
trial cases on an ad hoc basis. The Court identified 4 factors which filing of a formal complaint by a private complainant or the filing
courts should assess in determining whether a particular defendant by the Field Investigation Office with the Ombudsman of a formal
has been deprived of his right: length of delay, the reason for the complaint based on an anonymous complaint or as a result of its
delay, the defendant's assertion of his right, and prejudice to the motu proprio investigations. The period devoted to the fact-finding
defendant. investigations prior to the date of the filing of the formal complaint
10. The Court adopted the factors set for forth in ​Barker in local with the Ombudsman shall NOT be considered in determining
jurisprudence in determining ​inordinate delay. inordinate delay. After the filing of the formal complaint, the time
a. Length of the delay devoted to fact-finding investigations shall always be factored in.
11. The Court has never set a threshold period for concluding ​b. Reasons for the delay
preliminary investigation proceedings before the OMB premised 16. Valid reasons for the delay identified and accepted by the Court
on the idea that "speedy disposition" is a relative and flexible include, but are not limited to: (1) extraordinary complications
concept. It has often been held that a ​mere mathematical such as the degree of difficulty of the questions involved, the
reckoning of the time involved is not sufficient in determining number of persons charged, the various pleadings led, and the
whether or not there was inordinate delay on the part of the voluminous documentary and testimonial evidence on record; and
investigating officer, and that particular regard must be taken of (2) acts attributable to the respondent.
the facts and circumstances peculiar to each case. 17. The period for re-investigation cannot automatically be taken
12. This is opposed with Sec. 58 of the 2008 Manual for Prosecutors against the State. Re-investigations cannot generally be considered
observed by the National Prosecutorial Service, and that mandated as "vexatious, capricious, and oppressive" practices proscribed by
by the Constitution to resolve matters and controversies within a the constitutional guarantee since these are performed for the
definite timeline. The prescribed period for the Judicial branch at benefit of the accused.
least gives the party litigants an idea on when they could c. Assertion of Right by the Accused
reasonably expect a ruling from the courts, and at the same time 22. The Court ruled in several cases that failure to move for the early
ensures that judges are held to account for the cases not so timely resolution of the preliminary investigation or similar reliefs before
disposed. the Ombudsman amounted to a virtual waiver of the constitutional
13. The Court is not unmindful of the duty of the Ombudsman under right.
the Constitution and RA 6770 to act promptly on complaints
brought before him but this imposition should not be mistaken

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23. Following ​Dela Peña​, it is the duty of the respondent to bring to 2. The fact- finding investigation, having preceded the filing of the
the attention of the investigating officer the perceived inordinate formal complaint, is excluded in computing the duration of the
delay in the proceedings of the formal preliminary investigation. delay. Thus, petitioner's preliminary investigation lasted for about
d. Prejudice to the respondent 5 years and 3 months from the date of the filing of the formal
25. The length of the delay and the justification proffered by the complaint, and 5 years and 2 months from when petitioner was
investigating officer therefore would necessarily be ordered to file his counter-affidavit.
counterbalanced against any prejudice suffered by the respondent. 3. Since the duration of the preliminary investigation is excessive, it
26. Reasonable deferment of the proceedings may be allowed or is incumbent then on the prosecution to justify the delay.
tolerated to the end that cases may be adjudged only after full and 4. The prosecution provided that there were 10 respondents in the
free presentation of evidence by all the parties, especially where complaint led with the OMB and each of them was afforded the
the deferment would cause no substantial prejudice to any party. right to explain themselves and that the records of the case were
27. In the macro-perspective, it is not only the respondent who stands allegedly voluminous that entailed considerable time to study and
to suffer prejudice from any delay in the investigation of his case. analyze. However, these ​reasons do not sufficiently explain the
For inordinate delays likewise makes it difficult for the more than five-year long preliminary investigation​​.
prosecution to perform its bounden duty to prove the guilt of the 5. No clarificatory hearing or further investigation was conducted
accused beyond reasonable doubt when the case is filed in court. that could have added a new dimension to the case.
28. It is for the Courts then to determine who between the two parties 7. The prosecution did not offer any acceptable explanation for the
was placed at a greater disadvantage by the delay in the gap between February 15, 2011 and April 15, 2016. Contrary to
investigation. the finding of the Sandiganbayan, there is a hiatus on the part of
the Ombudsman during this period. ​Left unsatisfactorily
​Time frame for resolution of criminal complaint explained, this amounts to a violation of petitioner's
29. The Ombudsman has the power to formulate its own rules on constitutional right to a speedy disposition of case​​, corollarily
pleading and procedure. All these controversies surrounding warranting the dismissal of the criminal case against him.
inordinate delay can easily be avoided had it prescribed a rule on 9. The plea for dismissal cannot be premised on the finding that the
the disposition period for the investigating graft officer to resolve instant criminal complaints were not politically-motivated unlike
the preliminary investigation of the formal complaints. in ​Tatad.​
10. Duterte had modified the ruling to the effect that the Court is now
Application in the case at bar agnostic of whether or not the political strong-arm is being flexed
1. The Court ​must first determine the extent of the delay in the to prosecute the accused. That the filing of the criminal complaint
conduct of the preliminary investigation before the Ombudsman. is ill-motivated is not a requisite before the right to a speedy
The Court deem the case against petitioner initiated on January 7, disposition of a case can be invoked.
2011, when the PACPO-OMB-Visayas led a formal complaint 11. Magante's ​alleged failure to assert his right is not a veritable
against petitioner. ground for the denial of the motion in the absence of any
motion, pleading, or act on his part that contributed to the

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delay​​. It is not for him to ensure that the wheels of justice continue
to turn but for the State to guarantee that the case is disposed
within a reasonable period. It is sufficient that he raised the
constitutional infraction prior to his arraignment before the
Sandiganbayan.
12. Neither can petitioner be deemed to have waived his right to a
speedy disposition of a case when he led a motion for
reconsideration against an adverse resolution of the Ombudsman.
The filing of this singular motion cannot by itself be considered
as active participation in the preliminary investigation
proceeding that amounted to a waiver of a constitutional right.
13. There could have been ​no grave prejudice suffered by the State
from the delay ​since the criminal charges for falsification of
public documents and splitting of contracts are offenses that
chiefly rely on the presentation of documentary evidence that, at
this point, has already formed part of the records of the case.

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2. Cagang v. Sandiganbayan (Fifth) (Rhald) The Supreme Court said that there was delay but there is no violation of the
July 31, 2018 | Leonen, J. | Right to speedy disposition of cases (inordinate accused's right to speedy disposition of cases considering that there was a waiver
delay) of the delay of a complex case. Admittedly, while there was delay, petitioner has
not shown that he asserted his rights during this period, choosing instead to wait
PETITIONERS: ​Cesar Matas Cagang until the information was filed against him with the Sandiganbayan.
RESPONDENTS: ​ Sandiganbayan, Fifth Division
DOCTRINE​​:
SUMMARY: ​[​This case is long. A lot of facts and block quotes (plus the fact 1. First, the right to speedy disposition of cases is different from the right
that it’s written by Leonen).]
to speedy trial. While the rationale for both rights is the same, the right
This is a consolidation of three cases involving the same accused. Accused is
to speedy trial may only be invoked in criminal prosecutions against
charged with violation of RA 3019 and Malversation of Public Funds. Cadang,
courts of law. The right to speedy disposition of cases, however, may
the Governor of Sarranggani, and a handful of officers of the Provincial Office
be invoked before any tribunal, whether judicial or quasi-judicial.
of Saranggani were charged with Malversation of Public Funds through an
2. Second, a case is deemed initiated upon the filing of a formal complaint
anonymous complaint. So an investigation by COA started. It was later found
prior to a conduct of a preliminary investigation. This Court
out the the embezzlement was done in conspiracy with Brgy. Captain
acknowledges, however, that the Ombudsman should set reasonable
Macagcalat and Mangalen (President and Treasurer of Kamaga Muslim
periods for preliminary investigation, with due regard to the
Christian Fishermen’s Cooperative. They made it appear that funds were
complexities and nuances of each case. Delays beyond this period will
extended to the Cooperative but in reality, there was none. The criminal
be taken against the prosecution. The period taken for fact-finding
complaint against petitioner was filed on ​February 10, 2003​​. On ​August 11,
investigations prior to the filing of the formal complaint shall not be
2004​​, the Office of the Ombudsman issued a Resolution finding probable cause
included in the determination of whether there has been inordinate
against petitioner. This Resolution, however, was modified by the Resolution
delay.
dated ​October 18, 2004​​, which ordered the conduct of further fact-finding
3. Third, courts must first determine which party carries the burden of
investigation against some of the other respondents in the case. This further
proof. If the right is invoked within the given time periods contained in
fact-finding was resolved by the Office of the Ombudsman on ​April 12, 2005.
current Supreme Court resolutions and circulars, 171 and the time
On ​August 8, 2011​​, or six (6) years after the recommendation to file
periods that will be promulgated by the Office of the Ombudsman, the
informations against petitioner was approved by Tanodbayan Marcelo, Assistant
defense has the burden of proving that the right was justifiably invoked.
Special Prosecutor II Pilarita T. Lapitan submitted the informations for
a. If the defense has the burden of proof, it must prove first,
Ombudsman Carpio Morales' review. Informations against petitioner were filed
whether the case is motivated by malice or clearly only
on ​November 17, 2011​​. Cagang filed a Motion to Quash/Dismiss with Prayer to
politically motivated and is attended by utter lack of evidence,
Void and Set Aside Order of Arrest while Macagcalat and Mangalen separately
and second, that the defense did not contribute to the delay.
filed their own Motion to Quash/Dismiss with Prayer to Void and Set Aside
b. Once the burden of proof shifts to the prosecution, the
Order of Arrest Cagang argued ​that there was an inordinate delay of seven (7)
prosecution must prove first, that it followed the prescribed
years in the filing of the Informations. ​The issue is was whether there was a
procedure in the conduct of preliminary investigation and in
delay and whether the accused’s right to speedy disposition of cases violated.

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the prosecution of the case; second, that the complexity of the with Prayer to Void and Set Aside Order of Arrest in Criminal
issues and the volume of evidence made the delay inevitable; Case Nos. SB-11-CRIM-0456 and SB-11-CRM-0457.
and third, that no prejudice was suffered by the accused as a 3. [Third case] Cagang’s petition for Certiorari with an urgent prayer
result of the delay. for the issuance of a temporary restraining order and/or writ of
4. Fourth, determination of the length of delay is never mechanical. Courts preliminary injuction assailing Resolutions of Sandiganbayan.
must consider the entire context of the case, from the amount of 4. All the Petitions questions the Sandiganbayan’s denial to quash the
evidence to be weighed to the simplicity or complexity of the issues Informations and Order of Arrest against Cagang despite the
raised. Office of the Ombudsman’s alleged inordinate delay.
a. An exception to this rule is if there is an allegation that the 5. On February 10 2003, On February 10, 2003, the Office of the
prosecution of the case was solely motivated by malice, such Ombudsman received an anonymous complaint alleging that
as when the case is politically motivated or when there is Amelia May Constantino, Mary Ann Gadian, and Joy Tangan of
continued prosecution despite utter lack of evidence. the Vice Governor's Office, Sarangani Province committed graft
Malicious intent may be gauged from the behavior of the and corruption by diverting public funds given as grants or aid
prosecution throughout the proceedings. If malicious using barangay officials and cooperatives as "dummies."
prosecution is properly alleged and substantially proven, the 6. On December 31, 2002, the Commission on Audit submitted its
case would automatically be dismissed without need of further audit report finding that the officials and employees of the
analysis of the delay. Provincial Government of Sarangani appear to have embezzled
b. Another exception would be the waiver of the accused to the millions in public funds by sourcing out the funds from grants, aid,
right to speedy disposition of cases or the right to speedy trial. and the Countrywide Development Fund of Representative Erwin
If it can be proven that the accused acquiesced to the delay, the Chiongbian using dummy cooperatives and people's organizations.
constitutional right can no longer be invoked. 7. COA found the following:
5. Fifth, the right to speedy disposition of cases or the right to speedy trial a. Releases of financial assistance intended for
must be timely raised. The respondent or the accused must file the nongovernmental organizations/people's organizations
appropriate motion upon the lapse of the statutory or procedural and local government units that were fraudulently and
periods. Otherwise, they are deemed to have waived their right to illegally made through inexistent local development
speedy disposition of cases. projects, resulting in a loss of P16,106,613.00.
b. Financial assistance was granted to cooperatives whose
officials
FACTS:
and members were government personnel or relatives of
1. This is a consolidation of 3 cases before the Supreme Court. Same
officials
accused: Cesar Matas Cagang, the provincial treasurer of the
of Sarangani. (P2,456,481.00)
Provincial Government of Saranggani.
c. Fraudulent encashment and payment of checks, and
2. [First two cases] Cagang is appealing the Resolution of the
frequent travels of the employees of the Vice Governor's
Sandiganbayan when it did not grant his Motion to Quash/Dismiss
Office. (P83,212.34)

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d. Inexistent Sagiptaniman projects were set up for farmers Documents and Violation of Section 3(e) of Republic Act No.
affected by calamities, which resulted in wastage and 3019.
misuse of government funds amounting to P4,000,000.00. 17. Tanodbayan Simeon Marcelo ordered the conduct of further
8. The Ombudsman issued a Joint Order terminating the cases. It fact-finding investigations on some of the other accused in the
concurred with COA and recommended that a criminal case for case. Thus, a preliminary investigation docketed as
Malversation of Public Funds through Falsification of Public OMB-M-C-0480-K was conducted on accused Hadji Moner
Documents and Violation of Section 3(e) of RA 3019 ​be filed Mangalen (Mangalen) and Umbra Macagcalat (Macagcalat).
against public officers named by COA. 18. In the meantime, the Office of the Ombudsman filed an
9. The list involved 180 accused. Information dated July 12, 2005, charging Miguel Draculan
10. Ombusman had to identify the accused who appeared the most Escobar ​(Governor)​​, Margie Purisima ​Rudes (Board Member)​​,
responsible. Perla Cabilin ​Maglinte (Provincial Administrator)​​, Maria
11. The accused were directed to file their counter-affidavits and Deposo ​Camanay (Provincial Accountant)​​, and Cesar Matas
submit controlling evidence. Cagang (Provincial Treasurer) of Malversation of Public Funds
12. All of the accused (elective and appointive alike) filed a Petition thru Falsification of Public Documents.
for Prohibition, Mandamus, injunction with Writ of Preliminary a. Amount of P375,000.00 by encashment through a DBP
Injunction and Temporary Restraining Order with Brach 28, RTC check.
of Alabel Saranggani. 19. June 17, 2010​: Gov. Escobar, Provincial Adminin. Magligante, and
13. The RTC issued a Temporary Restraining Order enjoining the Prov. Treasurer Cagang pleaded not guilty. Board Member Rudes
Office of the Ombudsman from enforcing its October 29, 2003 and Prov. Accountant Camanay remianed at large.
Joint Order. 20. Escobar, Magligante, Cagang found not guilty for insufficiency of
14. In an Order dated December 19, 2003, the RTC dismissed the evidence. Case of Rudes and Camanay were archived for
Petition on the ground that the officials had filed another similar Sandiganbayan’s inability to acquire jurisdiction over them.
Petition with the Supreme Court, which the SC had dismissed. 21. August 8, 2011: Omb. Carpio-Morales found probable cause to
Thus, some of the accused filed their counter-affidavits. charge Mangalen and Macagcalat with Malversation of Public
15. After what the Office of the Ombudsman referred to as "a Funds through Falsification and Violation of Section 3( e) of
considerable period of time," it issued another Order directing the Republic Act No. 3019.
accused who had not yet filed their counter-affidavits to file them a. A certain Mary Ann Gadian was made as a State witness
within seven (7) days or they will be deemed to have waived their regarding the cases of malversation in the Pronvince of
right to present evidence on their behalf. Saranggani.(Later on it was said that Ombudsman said
16. The Ombudsman found probable cause to charge ​Governor that one of the reasons of the delay was ascertaining
Miguel D. Escobar, ​Vice Governor Felipe Constantino, ​Board whether may serve as a state witness)
Members​​, and ​several employees of the Office of the Vice b. Felipe Constantino was found to be dead. (Later on,
Governor of Sarangani and the Office of the Sangguniang Ombudsman said that one reason for the delay was their
Panlalawigan with Malversation through Falsification of Public

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verification of Constatino’s death; because if he’s alive, rights to due process and to speedy disposition of cases. (This case
he would have been included in the charge). heavily cited Tatad v. Sandiganbayan).
22. November 17, 2011: Omb. Carpio-Morales approved 24. Prosecution: Argues that the accused have not yet submitted
recommendation and filed information against Cagang, Camanay, themselves to the jurisdiction of the court and that there was no
Macagcalat, Mangalen. (See FACT # 21; so the previously charged showing that delay in the filing was intentional, capricious,
people plus Macagcalat and Mangalen this time pursuant to Omb’s whimsical, or motivated by personal reasons.
finding of probable cause) 25. September 10, 2012: ​Sandiganbayan issued a Resolution denying
a. They are charged for violating the following: the Motions to Quash/Dismiss.
i. Section 3(e) of RA 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt a. It found that Cagang, Macagcalat, and Mangalen
Practices Act) voluntarily submitted to the jurisdiction of the court by
ii. Malversation of Public Funds thru Falsification the filing of the motions.
of Public Documents. b. It also found that there was no inordinate delay in the
b. The information provides that the accused conspired with issuance of the information, considering that 40
Brgy. Captain Macagcalat and Mangalen (President and different individuals were involved with direct
Treasurer of Kamaga Muslim Christian Fishermen’s participation in more or less 81 different transactions.
Cooperative (Cooperative)). c. Accordingly, ​Tatad is not applicable ​because the filing
i. “ x x x to make it appear that financial assistance of the Informations was ​not politically motivated​​.
was requested and given to the Cooperative, d. It pointed out that ​the accused did not invoke their right
when in truth and in fact, neither was there a to speedy disposition of cases ​before t​ he Office of the
request for financial assistance received by the Ombudsman but only did so after the filing of the
said Cooperative after the check was encashed, Informations.
as herein accused, conspiring and confederating e. Cagang filed for an MR; it was denied.
with each other, did then and there malverse, 26. G.R. Nos. 206438 and 206458:
embezzle, misappropriate and convert to their a. Cagang filed for a Petition for Certiorari before the SC
own personal use and benefit the said amount of (concerning FACTS # 25)
P350,000.00 thereby causing undue injury to the 27. G.R. Nos. 210141-42:
government in the aforesaid amount” a. June 13, 2013: Cagang filed an Urgent Motion to Quash
23. Cagang filed a Motion to Quash/Dismiss with Prayer to Void and Order of Arrest. Cagang alleged that an Order of Arrest
Set Aside Order of Arrest while Macagcalat and Mangalen was issued against him. He moved for the quashal of the
separately filed their own Motion to Quash/Dismiss with Prayer to Order on the ground that he had a pending Petition for
Void and Set Aside Order of Arrest Cagang argued ​that there was Certiorari before this Court.
an inordinate delay of seven (7) years in the filing of the b. June 28. 2013: Sandiganbayan denied the Urgent Motion
Informations​​. Citing Tatad v. Sandiganbayan and Roque v. on the ground that it failed to comply with the three
Ombudsman, he argued that the delay violated his constitutional

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(3)-day notice rule and that no temporary restraining order than seven (7) years to study the evidence needed to
was issued by this Court. (See FACT #27a) establish probable cause.
c. September 10, 2013: Sandiganbayan denied MR. f. Petitioner likewise emphasizes that the Sandiganbayan
d. Cagang filed for a TRO in SC. should have granted his Motion to Quash Order of Arrest
e. February 5, 2014: SC granted the TRO enjoining the since there was a pending Petition before this Court
Sandiganbayan from continuing with the proceedings of questioning the issuance of the Informations against him.
the case and from implementing the warrant of arrest He argues that the case would become moot if the Order
against Cagang. of Arrest is not quashed
28. After granting the TRO (FACT #27e), SC consolidated the cases. 30. Prosecution’s defense:
29. Petitioner argues that the Sandiganbayan committed grave abuse of a. Petitioner should have invoked his right to speedy
discretion when: disposition of cases when the case was still pending
a. It dismissed his Motion to Quash/Dismiss since the before the Office of the Ombudsman, not when the
Informations filed against him violated his constitutional Information was already filed with the Sandiganbayan.
rights to due process and to speedy disposition of cases. b. Tatad was inapplicable since there were peculiar
b. Citing Tatad v. Sandiganbayan, Cagang argues that the circumstances which prompted this Court to dismiss the
Office of the Ombudsman lost its jurisdiction to file the information due to inordinate delay.
cases in view of its inordinate delay in terminating the c. It points out that a petition for certiorari is not the proper
preliminary investigation almost seven (7) years after the remedy to question the denial of a motion to quash and
filing of the complaint. that the appropriate remedy should be to proceed to trial.
c. This delay violates Article III, Section 16 of the
Constitution and Rule 112, Section 3(f) of the Rules of ISSUE:
Court. PROCEDURAL:
d. He points out that the Sandiganbayan overlooked two 1. Whether or not the pendency of a petition for certiorari with this
(2) instances of delay by the Office of the Court suspends the proceedings before the Sandiganbayan. ​No, it
Ombudsman​​: will not prevent the Sandiganbayan from proceeding with the
i. The filing of the complaint on February 10, 2003 case absent the issuance of TRO or writ of preliminary
to the filing of the Informations on November injunction.
17, 2011. (7 years) 2. Whether or not the denial of a motion to quash may be the subject
ii. The conclusion of the preliminary investigation of a petition for certiorari. ​No.
in 2005 to the filing of the Informations on SUBSTANTIVE:
November 1 7, 2011. 1. Whether or not the Sandiganbayan committed grave abuse of
e. Cagang stated that the it has already been investigated by discretion in denying petitioner Cesar Matas Cagang's Motion to
the Commission on Audit in its Audit Report; thus, the Quash/Dismiss with Prayer to Void and Set Aside Order of Arrest
Office of the Ombudsman should not have taken more and Urgent Motion to Quash Order of Arrest on the ground of

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inordinate delay. ​There was delay BUT there is no violation of 3. Neither the Constitution nor Republic Act No. 6770 provide for
the accused's right to speedy disposition of cases considering a specific period within which to measure promptness​​. Neither
that there was a waiver of the delay of a complex case. do they provide for criteria within which to determine what could
already be considered as delay in the disposition of complaints.
RULING: Thus, ​judicial interpretation became necessary to determine
WHEREFORE, the Petitions are DENIED. The Temporary Restraining what could be considered "prompt" and what length of time
Order dated February 5, 2014 is LIFTED. The Sandiganbayan is could amount to unreasonable or "inordinate delay."
DIRECTED to resolve Case No. SB-ll-CRM-0456 and Case No. SB-11- 4. The concept of inordinate delay was introduced in ​Tatad v.
CRM-0457 with due and deliberate dispatch. Sandiganbayan,​ where this Court was constrained to apply the
“radical relief” of dismissing the criminal complaint against an
RATIO: accused due to the delay in the termination of the preliminary
ISSUE # 1 & 2 (PROCEDURAL): investigation.
1. Contrary to petitioner's arguments, the pendency of a petition for 5. So in ​Tatad v. Sandiganbayan​:
certiorari before this Court will not prevent the Sandiganbayan a. A report was submitted to the Legal Panel, Presidential
from proceeding to trial absent the issuance of a temporary Security Command sometime in October 1974, ​charging
restraining order or writ of preliminary injunction Francisco S. Tatad (Tatad) ​with ​graft and corruption
2. Since this Comi did not issue injunctive relief when the Petition in during his stint as Minister of Public Information.
G.R. Nos. 206438 and 206458 (FACT # was filed, the b. Long story short: It was only a year after when he was
Sandiganbayan cannot be faulted from proceeding with trial. charged. Then only 3 years after is when the information
3. As a general rule, the denial of a motion to quash is not appealable was approved by the Tanodbayan but Sandiganbayan still
as it is merely interlocutory. Likewise, it cannot be the subject of a asked them to amend the date of commission of the crime.
petition for certiorari. After the change of administration brought by EDSA
4. The adequate, plain, and speedy remedy is to ​proceed to trial Revolution, the new Tanodbayan said that they’ll still
and to determine the guilt or innocence of the accused. prosecute Tatad because his offense was against the State.
5. A party may, however, question the denial in a petition for c. In deciding, the Supreme Court took note that the finding
certiorari if the party can establish that the denial was tainted of ordinate delay applied on a case-to-case basis.
with grave abuse of discretion​​. d. This Court found that there were peculiar circumstances
which attended the preliminary investigation of the
ISSUE # 3 (SUBSTANTIVE): complaint, the most blatant of which was that the 1974
1. The right to a speedy trial is invoked against the courts in a report ​against Tatad was only acted upon by the
criminal prosecution. Tanodbayan when Tatad had a falling out with
2. The right to speedy disposition of cases, however, is invoked even President Marcos in 1979.
against quasi-judicial or administrative bodies in civil, criminal, or e. Thus, the delay of three (3) years in the tennination of the
administrative cases before them. preliminary investigation was found to have been

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inordinate delay, which was violative of petitioner's 13. (A LOT OF BLOCK QUOTES STATING LAWS THAT
constitutional rights. MANDATE SPEEDY DISPOSITION OF CASES; I INCLUDED
6. Political motivation, however, is merely one of the circumstances A FEW)
to be factored in when determining whether the delay is inordinate. a. The Speedy Trial Act of 1998 provides that the entire trial
(Leonen goes on citing A LOT of cases which used Tatad as the period must not exceed 180 days, except as otherwise
standard) provided for by this Court.
7. This Court, however, emphasized that "[a] mere mathematical i. The law likewise provides for a time limit of 30
reckoning of the time involved is not sufficient" to rule that there days from the filing of the information to
was inordinate delay. conduct the arraignment, and 30 days after
8. Despite the promulgation of Tatad, however, this Court struggled arraignment for trial to commence.
to apply a standard test within which to determine the presence of b. Supreme Court Circular No. 38-98
inordinate delay. The SC introduced another test called the i. The time limit with respect to the period from
“balancing test.” arraignment to trial imposed by said provision
9. The ​Barker balancing test provides that courts must consider the shall be one hundred eighty (180) days. For the
following factors when determining the existence of inordinate second twelve-month period, the time limit shall
delay. be one hundred twenty (120) days, and for the
a. First, the length of delay; third twelve-month period the time limit shall be
b. Second, the reason for delay; eighty (80) days.
c. Third, the defendant's assertion or non-asse1iion of his or 14. A ​dilemma arises as to whether the period includes
her right; proceedings in quasi-judicial agencies before a formal
d. Fourth, the prejudice to the defendant as a result of the complaint is actually filed. The Office of the Ombudsman, for
delay. example, has no set periods within which to conduct its
(Again, Leonen goes on citing A LOT of cases which used this fact-finding investigations.
Baker balancing test.) 15. They are only mandated to act promptly. Thus, in People v.
10. Then, SC applied ​both the Tatad doctrine and the Barker balancing Sandiganbayan, Fifth Division, ​this Court stated ​that a
test in the 1991 case of Gonzales v. Sandiganbayan. fact-finding investigation conducted by the Office of the
11. Determining the length of delay necessarily involves a query on Ombudsman should not be deemed separate from preliminary
when a case is deemed to have commenced. investigation for the purposes of determining whether there
12. In Dans al v. Fernandez, this Court recognized that the right to was a violation of the right to speedy disposition of cases​​.
speedy disposition of cases does not only include the period from a. RE-EXAMINATION OF PEOPLE V.
which a case is submitted for resolution. Rather, ​it covers the SANDIGANBAYAN, FIFTH DIVISION.
entire period of investigation even before trial. Thus, the right b. When an anonymous complaint is filed or the Office of
may be invoked as early as the preliminary investigation or the Ombudsman conducts a motu proprio fact-finding
inquest. investigation, ​the proceedings are not yet adversarial.

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Even if the accused is invited to attend these petitioner was approved by Tanodbayan Marcelo, Assistant Special
investigations, ​this period cannot be counted since Prosecutor II Pilarita T. Lapitan submitted the informations for
these are merely preparatory to the filing of a formal Ombudsman Carpio Morales' review. Informations against
complaint​​. At this point, the Office of the Ombudsman petitioner were filed on ​November 17, 2011​​.
will not yet determine if there is probable cause to charge 20. Six (6) years is beyond the reasonable period of fact-finding of
the accused. ninety (90) days. The burden of proving the justification of the
c. The period of investigation will not be counted in the delay, therefore, is on the prosecution, or in this case, respondent.
determination of whether the right to speedy 21. Respondent alleged that the delay in the filing of the informations
disposition of cases was violated. was justified since it was still determining whether accused Mary
d. Thus, this Court now holds that for the purpose of Ann Gadian (Gadian) could be utilized as a state witness and it still
determining whether inordinate delay exists, ​a case is had to verify accused Felipe Constantino's death. The
deemed to have commenced from the filing of the recommendation, however, to utilize Gadian as a state witness was
formal complaint and the subsequent conduct of the approved by Tanodbayan Marcelo on December 20, 2004. Felipe
preliminary investigation. Constantino's death was verified by the Sandiganbayan in its
16. For the court to appreciate a violation of the right to speedy November 14, 2006 Order.
disposition of cases, delay must not be attributable to the defense. 22. Admittedly, while there was delay, petitioner has not shown
17. Certain unreasonable actions by the accused will be taken against that he asserted his rights during this period, choosing instead
them. This includes delaying tactics like failing to appear despite to wait until the information was filed against him with the
summons, filing needless motions against interlocutory actions, or Sandiganbayan​​.
requesting unnecessary postponements that will prevent courts or 23. The records of the case show that the transactions investigated are
tribunals to properly adjudicate the case. When proven, this may complex and numerous. As respondent points out, there were over
constitute a waiver of the right to speedy trial or the right to speedy a hundred individuals investigated, and eventually, 40 of them
disposition of cases. were determined to have been involved in 81 different anomalous
18. So in this case, there is no showing that this case was attended by transactions.
malice. There is no evidence that it was politically motivated. 24. This Court finds that there is no violation of the accused's right
19. The criminal complaint against petitioner was filed on ​February to speedy disposition of cases considering that there was a
10, 2003​​. On ​August 11, 2004​​, the Office of the Ombudsman waiver of the delay of a complex case.
issued a Resolution finding probable cause against petitioner. This  
Resolution, however, was modified by the Resolution dated  
October 18, 2004​​, which ordered the conduct of further  
fact-finding investigation against some of the other respondents in  
the case. This further fact-finding was resolved by the Office of the  
Ombudsman on ​April 12, 2005. On ​August 8, 2011​​, or six (6)  
 
years after the recommendation to file infonnations against
 

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3. People v. Sandiganbayan (Brian)


DOCTRINE​​: A mere mathematical reckoning of the time involved is not
April 16, 2018 | Tijam, J. | Right to speedy disposition of cases
sufficient. The right to speedy disposition of a case, like the right to speedy trial,
is deemed violated only:
PETITIONERS: ​People of the Philippines ● when the proceeding is attended by vexatious, capricious, and
RESPONDENTS: Sandiganbayan 4​th Division, Alejandro Gamos, Rosalyn oppressive delays; or
Gile ● when unjustified postponements of the trial are asked for and secured;
● when without cause or justifiable motive, a long period of time is
allowed to elapse without the party having his case tried.
SUMMARY: ​On February 18, 2008, a complaint was filed against former Sta.
Magdalena, Sorsogon Mayor Alejandro E. Gamos (Gamos), Municipal
Accountant Rosalyn E. Gile (Gile), and Municipal Treasurer Virginia E. Laco FACTS: Take note of the dates underlined!
(Laco) for violation of Section 3(e) of Republic Act No. 3019. On March 30, 1. Two separate complaints were filed against ​Gamos, Gile and
2015, two Informations for malversation of public funds were filed against Laco for violation of ​Sec. 3(e) of RA 3019 ​and of ​Art. 217 of
Gamos, Gile, and Laco before the Sandiganbayan. ​On February 1, 2017, the 1
RPC from alleged illegal cash advances.
Sandiganbayan issued its assailed Resolution, dismissing the cases, on the
a. Gamos is the former Sta. Magdalena Sorsogon Mayor;
ground of delay, depriving the respondents-accused Gamos, Gile and Laco of
their right to a speedy disposition of their cases. Sandiganbayan found that seven Gile is the Municipal Accountant; ​Laco is the Municipal
years had passed since the filing of the First Complaint in 2008 until the filing of Treasurer
the Informations before it. The issue in this case is whether or not the 2. February 18, 2008​​: ​First complaint ​was filed before Deputy
Sandiganbayan committed grave abuse of discretion when it dismissed the cases Ombudsman Luzon by Jocelyn Gallanosa and Joselito Robillos
before it on the ground of delay. ​Supreme Court ruled in the affirmative. The (both are Sangguniang Bayan Members). They alleged that the
conduct of both the prosecution and defendant are weighed apropos the four-fold three accused, in conspiracy with each other, made illegal cash
factors, to wit: (1) length of the delay; (2) reason for the delay; (3) defendant's advances in the total amount of P6,380,725.84 in 2004 and 2006,
assertion or non-assertion of his right; and (4) prejudice to defendant resulting
as per COA Audit Observation Memorandum.
from the delay.
3. March 31, 2008​: ​Gamos, Gije, and Laco were directed to submit
It is not unreasonable for the investigating officer to embark into the detailed counter-affidavits but they filed motion for extension of time to
investigation of the cases. As alleged, there were 63 cash advance transactions in file.
the two complaints to investigated upon, covering the period of 2004 to 2007. 4. May 12, 2008: ​The 3 accused filed their counter-affidavits,
There is nothing on record that would show that respondents asserted this right praying for the dismissal of the cases for being malicious, baseless,
to speedy disposition during the OMB proceedings when they alleged that the and premature.
delay occurred. In fact, it took respondents one year and eight months after the a. In return, in August 2009, Gallanosa filed a Manifestation
Informations were filed before the court a quo on March 30, 2015 before they
and Urgent Motion for Preventive Suspension.
finally asserted such right in their Motion to Dismiss. Neither was there a
considerable prejudice caused by a delay upon the respondents. Respondents 5. December 3, 2009: ​Gallanosa filed ​a Second Complaint against
were practically not made to undergo any investigative proceeding prior to the the three accused. She alleged that the three accused, in conspiracy
COA's response to respondents' request for the review of the audit reports upon
which the complaints were anchored.
1
Malversation of public funds 

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with each other, made illegal cash advances amounting to 2010 was attached, which effectively denies the request for the
P2,226,500 made in Jan-May 2007. review of the audit report.
a. Gallanosa was the elected-mayor during this time. 14. June 13, 2013​​: ​Gallanosa and Robillos ​MR (fact 12) ​was finally
6. February 23, 2010: ​The three accused were directed to file their resolved, granting the same​. There was a finding of probable
counter-affidavits to the Second Complaint. Accused, once again, cause to indict Gamos, Gile and Laco for malversation of public
filed motions for extension of time to file their counter-affidavits. funds
7. May 7, 2010: The three-accused filed their counter-affidavit for 15. Gamos MR was received by OMB Luzon in Februray 2014 but
the second complaint asking for its dismissal. was denied in June 2014. OMB approved the denial of Gamos’
8. September 1, 2010: Gamos filed a Comment/Opposition to the MR in February 2015.
earlier motion praying for his preventive suspension (Fact 4a) 16. March 30, 2015​​: Two informations for malversation of public
9. October 7, 2010: The three accused file ​an Ex-parte funds were filed against Gamos, Gile, and Laco before the
manifestation and motion to Admit Letter to COA Chairman Sandiganbayan.
requesting for the review of the audit reports on which the 17. For several times, Gamos failed to appear before the said court for
complaints were based. his arraignment despite notice. As such, Sandiganbayan issued a
10. October 19, 2010 OMB Resolution​​: OMB Investigation officer Resolution directing Gamos to show cause why he should not be
found that it is ​premature to determine criminal and cited in contempt.
administrative liabilities as the COA audit reports​​, wherein the 18. November 22, 2016: ​Gamos and Giles filed Motion to Dimiss ​on
complaints were based, ​were not yet final​.​ the ground of capricious and vexatious delay in the OMB’s
a. Recommended for the dismissal of the complaints conduct of preliminary investigation to the damage and prejudice
without prejudice to the outcome of review requested of the accused.
by the three accused (Fact 9) and to the refiling of the 19. Sandiganbayan: dismissed the cases on the ground of delay,
complaints if circumstances warrant. depriving the three-accused of their right to speedy disposition of
11. OMB Resolution ​(Fact 10) were only approved ​on May 17, 2011 their cases.
by Acting OMB Casimiro. a. Seven years had passed since the filing of the first
a. Reason: ​delay was caused by the resignation of Deputy complaint.
OMB for Luzon Jalandoni and OMB Gutierrez. b. While the accused may have contributed to the delay for
12. Gallanosa and Robillos (Complainants) moved for motion for filing several motions for extension, the OMB took 2
reconsideration of OMB Resolution. This was received by OMB years to act upon the complaints.
Luzon ​on July 7, 2011​​. The three accused were only able to file i. OMB investigating officer issued resolution in
their Comment-Opposition to the Motion ​on December 5, 2011 October 2010 but was only approved in May
after requesting for motion for extension 2011 (Fact 10 &11)
13. January 9, 2012: ​OMB-Luzon received Gallanosa and Robillos’ c. The resignations of the Deputy OMB and OMB were not
Position Paper, wherein the COA Chairman’s Letter dated Sep. justifiable reasons for the delay.

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d. The OMB Investigating officer took another 2 years in prosecution and defendant. Their conducts are weighed according
granting the MR filed by Gallanosa and Robillos (Fact to these four factors:
14) and the delay was not satisfactorily explained by the a. Length ​of delay
prosecution. b. Reason ​for delay
20. Hence, this petition. People imputes grave abuse of discretion c. Defendant’s assertion or non-assertion of this right
against the Sandiganbayan in dismissing the cases on the ground of d. Prejudice ​to the defendant as a result of the delay.
delay. 5. Sandiganbayan’s conclusion that the right was violated because the
OMB took 7 years to resolve from the filing of the first complaint
ISSUE: is not well-taken.
1. Was there a violation of Gamos and Gile’s right to speedy 6. Based from the series of events and circumstances that happened,
disposition of their cases to warrant the dismissal thereof? – NONE no delay was contemplated.
2. WoN this petition shall be dismissed based on double jeopardy? – a. First Complaint was filed on Feb. 18, 2008. ​By March 1,
NO 2008, OMB already acted on complaint by directing the
accused to respond.
RULING: ​Petition is GRANTED. Sandiganbayan’s resolution (Fact 19) is b. April-June of the same year, pleadings from both parties
hereby REVERSED. were filed.
c. Pending this, the second complaint was filed. Again, there
RATIO: were exchanges of pleadings filed.
1. Section 16, Art. 3 of the Constitution declares: All persons shall d. OMB investigating officer issued October 2010
have the right to a speedy disposition of their cases before all Resolution recommending for the dismissal of the cases
judicial, quasi-judicial or administrative bodies. based on prematurity.
2. But​​, the Court has held that this right is a flexible concept. ​A mere e. In view of the consecutive resignations of Deputy OMB
mathematical reckoning of the time involved is not sufficient. and OMB, the Resolution was only approved on May 17,
3. The right to speedy disposition of a case, like the right to 2011 or 11 days after the former OMB’s resignation.
speedy trial, is deemed violated ​only: f. Gallanosa and Robillos’ MR was filed followed by the
a. when the proceeding is attended by vexatious, submission of COA Chairman’s letter-response to the
capricious, and oppressive delays; or accused’s request for review of COA’s audit reports,
b. when unjustified postponements of the trial are asked informing the accused of denial of their request.
for and secured; or 7. The Court does not find it unreasonable for the investigating
c. when without cause or justifiable motive, a long period officer to embark into the detailed investigation of the cases.
of time is allowed to elapse without the party having 8. Allegedly, there were 63 cash advance transactions in the
his case tried. complaints to be investigated on, covering periods from
4. In determining whether this right is violation, ​the balancing test 2004-2007. ​It took the investigating officer only 1 year and 3
must be applied. Balancing test weighs the conduct of both the

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months from the receipt of last pleading to conclude the


investigation​​ and find probable cause against respondents.
9. This Court takes judicial notice of the fact that these cases are not
the only ones pending before the OMB. ​The Sandiganbayan
merely ventured into a mathematical computation of the
period from the filing of the First complaint up to the filing of the
Informations before it.
10. The concept of speedy trial or speedy disposition of cases for that
matter is a relative term and must necessarily be a flexible concept.
11. Another essential matter disregarded by the Sandiganbayan is
the fact that there is nothing on record that would show that
the respondents asserted this right to speedy disposition during
the OMB proceedings.
a. It took respondents 1 year and 8 months after the
Informations were filed before they asserted this right in
their Motion to Dismiss.
12. Neither was there a considerable prejudice caused by a delay upon
the accused. Accused were practically not made to undergo any
investigative proceeding prior to COA’s response to their request
for review.
13. Hence, the investigating officer recommended the dismissal of the
complaints as it was premature. In fact, upon COA’s denial of such
request, the investigating officer started the investigation.
14. The determination of whether or not there was delay in the
investigation proceedings cannot be indiscriminately reckoned
form the filing of the first complaint.
15. In this case, there is no allegation, much less proof, that
respondents were persecuted, oppressed, or made to undergo any
vexatious process such as in the above-cited cases, during the
investigation period before the filing of the Informations.
16. What the Constitution prohibits

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17. are unreasonable, arbitrary and oppressive delays which dismissed at respondent-accused’s insistence, thus, with their
render rights nugatory. express consent.
23. In the resolution of this case, the Court has to take into
On matters raised by the respondents-accused in their consideration not only the rights of the respondents as accused
Comment/Opposition but also the equally important right of the State to due process
Gamos and Gile argued that the instant petition should be dismissed as it and/or to prosecute offenses.
effectively put them in jeopardy and also for being filed out of time. The 24. The Sandiganbayan's indiscriminate and erroneous dismissal of the
motion for reconsideration was unnecessary and prohibited as the nature of cases deprived the People of a day in court. Rights are shields
an acquittal is final, immediately executory and unappealable. In addition, against abuses, not weapons, which may be wielded at any time
this petition was filed out of the 60-day prescriptive period; the prescriptive according to the holder's whims and caprices.
period should have been reckoned from the issuance of the Sandiganbayan 25. While no less than the Constitution guarantees the right of the
Resolution​, ​not from its receipt of the denial. accused to speedy disposition of cases, such right does not
preclude the rights of public justice, especially when
18. An order, decision, or resolution rendered with grave abuse of wrongfully asserted.
discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction (GADALEJ)
is a void judgment. ​A void judgment is no judgment at all
legally and it can never become final.
19. A petition for certiorari under Rule 65 is the proper remedy to
annul Sandiganbayan’s resolution as it was issued with
GADALEJ.
20. Hence, since Sandiganbayan’s dismissal of the cases was void,
it is as if there was no acquittal or dismissal of the cases at all.
21. Double jeopardy also does not exist in this case. ​Double jeopardy
attaches only when the following elements concur:
a. Accused is ​charged under a complaint of Information
sufficient in form and substance to sustain their
conviction
b. Court ​has jurisdiction
c. Accused ​has been arraigned and has pleaded
d. He/she is ​convicted or acquitted ​or the case is ​dismissed
without his/her consent.
22. In this case, the order of dismissal was rendered by a court who
acted with GADALEJ; the three accused have not yet been
arraigned for their refusal to appear therein and the cases were

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4. Alva v. CA (Marian) 2. MR: Alva explained that he has a bail 2 duly approved by Judge
April 12, 2006 | J. Chico-Nazario | Rule 116, Sec 1 - Jurisdiction over Muro
person 3. 2002 Resolution - dismissed the appeal since Alva failed to
PETITIONER​​: Arnold Alva secure bond
RESPONDENTS​​: Hon. Court of Appeals 4. MR: Alva explained that he thought he was just asked to explain
SUMMARY​​: Alva was charged with estafa under par. 2a where he why there was no bond. Alva appended a Bond Endorsement
defrauded Veranga to pay to him P120k in exchange of a US Visa which showing that Bail 2 was extended up to May 2003
Alva knew to be false. A warrant was issued but retracted due to Alva’s 5. 2003 Resolution - disposed MR because Alva failed to submit
filing of bail approved by Hon. Bayhon (bail 1). ​Alva was arraigned himself to the custody of law & no valid bond
where he pled not guilty. Subsequently, Alva’s counsel filed a motion to Issue: WON Alva submitted himself to the court’s jurisdiction. - Yes.
cancel promulgation of RTC’s decision from May 5 to June 17 because of SC differentiated custody of the law & jurisdiction over the person (see
prior commitment but the RTC only moved it on May 19. Alva failed to doctrine).
show up on this date so the RTC promulgated its decision in absentia and 1. Alva correctly argues that he has been under the court’s
a bench warrant was issued. Alva was found guilty of the offense and jurisdiction evident from the numerous pleadings he submitted
sentenced to an imprisonment of 9-17 years. Appended to this decision is after the RTC’s decision
a personal bail bond secured by Mega Pacific Insurance Corp (Bail 2). On 2. However, he is not under the custody of the law because he was
the same day however, Alva’s Bail 1 was executed upon due to the not arrested nor is he detained.
bondsman’s failure to secure his presence on trial. The Chief of Warrant 3. *personal note, Rule 116, Sec 1g says that arraignment generally
and Subpoena then manifested that they were not able to serve the warrant happens 30 days after acquiring jurisdiction over person. Since
because it was out of their coverage area & Alva changed his address. Alva was arraigned, it follows that jurisdiction over him was
Alva then MR-ed thru registered mail. This is what happened at the RTC: acquired.
1. RTC declined to rule on the MR DOCTRINE:
2. Alva filed a Notice of Appeal - RTC declined to give due course
Custody of the Law Jurisdiction over Person
to this since it was filed out of time
3. Alva MR-ed again - granted in the interest of justice because Arrest or voluntary surrender. Arrest or voluntary appearance.
Alva, a non-lawyer, prepared his own paperworks. However, Literal custody over body of Lost only when case is terminated
RTC said that their decision was based on merits so they stick by accused. and exists despite escape.
their decision (convicting Alva of estafa) and ordered the records
be submitted to the CA In custody but not yet subject to Subject to jurisdiction but not in
jurisdiction​ when person files a custody​ when an accused escapes
On the CA:
motion to quash warrant before custody after his trial has
1. 2001 Resolution - asked Alva to show cause why appeal should trial commenced.
not be dismissed despite failure to secure bail bond for his
provisional liberty

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FACTS: medical certificate stating that Alva’s absence is due to


1. This is a petition for review on certiorari assailing the 2 resolutions hypertension
of the CA 8. So RTC issued an order directing the promulgation of its decision
a. Resolution 1 dated Oct 2002 - dismissed the appeal in absentia
because Alva failed to post a new bond in compliance a. May 19, 1999 → RTC also issued a bench warrant of
with the 2001 CA Resolution arrest2
b. Resolution 2 dated Feb 2003 - Alva failed to submit b. May 25, 1999 → Later on RTC found Alva guilty of
himself to the jurisdiction of the court or under custody of estafa (2a). He was sentenced to an indeterminate term of
law since his conviction in 1999 imprisonment
c. These resolutions dismissed Alva’s appeal of the RTC’s i. Prision mayor min → 9 years and 1 day to
decision convicting him due to his failure to post a new ii. Reclusion temporal max → 17 years
bail bond to secure his provisional liberty on appeal 9. Appearing in the records of the RTC of the duplicate of the
2. An information charged Alva of estafa under Art 315, par 2a of the decision in no. 8 was a document entitled Personal Bail Bond
RPC issued by Mega Pacific Insurance Corp. (dated May 21, 1999,
a. On Oct to December 1993 in Manila City hereinafter ​Bail 2​) approved by Judge Muro
b. Alva defrauded Veranga by means of false manifestation a. This means that Alva was admitted to bail again after his
c. Where Alva told Veranga that he can process her US Visa conviction at the RTC (note: “again” because his 1st bail
in if she pays him P120,000 (with intent to defraud) was in Fact 4)
d. Veranga did pay Alva and Alva 10. However, in an order released on same day as judgment of
3. This led to a criminal case at the Manila RTC Branch 54 → ℅ conviction, Alva’s Bail 1 was forfeited against the Easter Insurance
Judge Muro, a warrant was subsequently issued and Surety Corp in the amount of P17,000 because of Alva’s
4. This warrant was retracted thru a Recall Order because of the bail failure to appear within the 10 day period abovementioned (note:
bond approved by Hon. Bayhon of Manila (hereinafter ​Bail 1​) I’m assuming the 10 day period began from Alva’s failure to
5. Upon arraignment, Alva pled not guilty. ​The case was now appear on May 19 for promulgation)
submitted for decision. 11. Police Superintendent De Jesus (Chief of Warrant and Subpoena
6. Alva’s counsel filed an Urgent Motion to Cancel Promulgation to section) manifested to the RTC the return of the bench warrant
reset the schedule of the promulgation of RTC’s decision from because Alva’s address (Unit 12 Fersal Condominium, Kalayaan
May 5, 1999 to June 17, 1999 because the counsel had prior Ave, Diliman) was out of their area of responsibility & Alva
commitment of equal importance moved out without informing the RTC
a. This was granted but moved only to May 19, 1999
b. However, on May 18 (day before approved date), counsel 2
Provision on bench warrant is expressed under Section 9, Rule 71 of the Rules of Court which
again sought a reschedule states that "[w]hen a ​respondent released on bail fails to appear on the day fixed for the
hearing​​, the court may issue another order of arrest or may order the bond for his appearance
7. Come May 19, Alva & counsel did not appear so a Joey Perez to be forfeited and confiscated, or both. A ​bench warrant is defined as a writ issued directly
(alleged Alva’s representative) delivered to the RTC a handwritten by a judge to a law-enforcement officer​​, especially for the arrest of a person who has been
held in contempt, has disobeyed a subpoena, or has to appear for a hearing or trial

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12. On July 15, a Remedios Caneda delivered to the RTC Alva’s b. Alva also reiterated that Bail 2 has been extended (they
request for the photocopies of his exhibits submitted to the RTC on appended to this MR a ​Bond Endorsement extending the
trial bail coverage from May 21, 1999 → May 21, 2003)
13. On July 21, Alva filed a Termination of Legal Services before the 19. OSG was asked to comment on the MR and they stated the ff
RTC because he fired his counsel & was looking for a new one objections
14. On July 26, Alva filed an MR thru registered mail a. Application for bail can only be availed by a person ​in
a. On Aug 30, RTC declined to rule on said MR and custody of law
considered it as a mere scrap of paper b. Bail on appeal is a matter of discretion when the
15. On Sept 2, Alva filed a Notice of Appeal penalty imposed by the RTC is greater than 6 years
a. RTC declined to give due course to this again because it imprisonment
was filed out of time. The MR filed on July 26 (July 23 20. CA Resolution (2003) → disposed the MR. Held that Alva failed
sabi sa case pero tingin ko yung July 26 pinepertain) was to submit himself to the jurisdiction of the court or under custody
not acted upon; thus, it did not stop the reglamentary of law since his conviction in 1999. There was also no valid bond
period to file an appeal. when he appealed.
16. On Nov 25, Alva MR-ed again. This was granted by the RTC in 21. Hence, finally, this petition.
the interest of justice because Alva, not a lawyer, solely prepared
his MR. However, the RTC denied the MR because the decision ISSUES:
being reconsidered has aptly decided on merits. Now, the appeal is 1. WON CA erred in dismissing the appeal due to Alva’s failure to
given due course since it was filed on time pending this MR. RTC post bail bond on appeal → No. By jumping bail, Alva waived his
ordered the records of the case be transmitted to the CA. right to appeal.
17. CA Resolution (Oct 16, 2001) → asked Alva to show cause within 2. WON Alva failed to submit himself to the jurisdiction of the
10 days why appeal should not be dismissed despite absence of court → No, Alva submitted himself to the court’s jurisdiction
bail bond for his provisional liberty when he was arraigned.
a. Oct 29 → Alva, thru new counsel, complied with this and a. Note: I think this issue relates to Rule 116 because:
explained that he filed Bail 2 duly approved by Judge i. Under Rules of Court, arraignment shall be held
Muro 30 days from date the court acquires jurisdiction
18. CA Resolution (2002) → dismissed the appeal because Alva failed over the person of the accused unless there is a
to post a new bond in compliance with the 2001 CA Resolution shorter period ℅ special law or SC Circular
a. Alva MR-ed. His counsel explained that they thought the [Rule 116, 1g]
2001 CA Resolution merely required them to explain, ii. Note also that accused cannot be tried in absentia
they did not understand that it required the posting of a if he hasn’t been arraigned.
new bail bond iii. In this case, since there was an arraignment (fact
5), trial in absentia pushed through. Thus, he
submitted himself to the jurisdiction of the court.

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RULING: 4. Posting of bail bond presupposes that accused is detained or in the


WHEREFORE, the instant petition is DENIED for lack of merit. The custody of law. In this case, it is evident that the bench warrant
assailed Resolutions of the Court of Appeals, in CA-G.R. CR No. 24077, was never served.
which dismissed petitioners appeal, are hereby AFFIRMED. In this a. No record showing that he was arrested nor did Alva
connection, Judge Manuel Muro is DIRECTED to issue forthwith a warrant voluntarily surrender.
of arrest for the apprehension of Petitioner Arnold Alva and for proper b. Right to bail can only be availed of by person in
disposition of the case in line with the foregoing discussion. Costs against custody of the law or deprived of liberty.
the petitioner. 5. No bail should have been granted to the petitioner. Bail 2 was
irregularly approved.
RATIO: a. No record of a motion filed by Alva formally applying for
1. Alva’s main arguments before the SC Bail 2
a. CA erred in ruling that Alva did not submit himself to the b. Assuming that Bail 2 was regularly approved, it is invalid
jurisdiction of the court because, evidently, Alva filed because Alva is not entitled to bail on appeal. The
several pleadings after the promulgation of judgment at prosecution was not duly notified that he applied for such
the RTC bail; thus, Alva’s argument of lack of notice on the bail
b. Alva recognizes that his bail might have been denied in negating circumstances (Ratio 1b) is unsound.
lieu of Rule 114 but he should have been given proper c. Alva falls under one of the bail negating circumstances -
notice by the prosecution that he is under the bail negating violation of condition/s of bail - because of his absence
circumstances. Still he argues that none of these during the promulgation of the RTC decision.
circumstances apply to him. d. His hypertension as evidenced by a medical certificate is
2. People, thru OSG, avers that despite presence of Bail 2, Alva never lacking because was no description of his physical state
surrendered, was arrested, nor deprived of his liberty after that would render him unable to go to court for an hour or
promulgation of RTC decision. Specifically, two. Worse, though said medical certificate (examined by
a. The bench warrant issued by the RTC was returned Rodel Aquino, MD) was notarized, affiant’s identity was
b. RTC rendered a judgment against Bail 1 due to the not provided (sketch)
bondsman’s failure to secure Alva’s presence before the e. Further evidence of violation of bail is Alva’s change of
court. address without informing the court as evidenced by the
c. Alva’s belatedly attached the bond endorsement (fact 18b) Process Server’s Return (this is a document ata)
does not guarantee that said bail bond’s efficacy 6. Dismissal of the appeal was also proper in lieu of Rule 124,
3. [Issue 1] Sec 5, Rule 114 addresses this issue. Section 8 of the Rules of Court where a person who jumps bail will
a. Alva was convicted by the RTC with a penalty of have his appeal dismissed.
imprisonment exceeding 6 years. a. Within the contemplation of the Revised Rules on
b. Thus, approval of his bail is discretionary. Crimpro, a person withdraws his appeal by jumping bail
because he is beyond the reach & application of the law;

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thus, he merely relies on the appeal to speculate his


chances of the reversal of the unfavorable decision of the
lower court.
7. [Issue 2] Jurisdiction once acquired, is not lost at the instance of
the parties but continues until the case is terminated.
a. Alva is correct that he has been under the court’s
jurisdiction
b. This is evident when he appeared and entered pled not
guilty to the crime charged even if he later on jumped
bail
8. However, Alva is not under the custody of the law because custody
signifies restraint on the person where he is deprived of his will &
liberty to be obedient to the law. Custody of the law is equated to
the custody of the body of the accused and since Alva is a fugitive,
he cannot be granted any relief by the CA.

SEPARATE OPINIONS: none


CONCURRING: none

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5. Miranda v. Tuliao (Sel) proceeding necessarily carries with it the reinstatement of the orders set
March 31, 2006 | Chico-Nazario | Rule 116 - Section 1 aside by the nullified proceeding and No double jeopardy in the
reinstatement of a criminal case dismissed before arraignment

PETITIONER​​: Jose Miranda, Alberto Dalmacio, Romeo Ocon DOCTRINE: ​Regarding rule 116 → ​The reinstatement of a criminal
RESPONDENTS​​: Virgilio Tuliao case dismissed before arraignment does not constitute double
jeopardy. Double jeopardy cannot be invoked where the accused has
SUMMARY​​: ​2 burnt cadavers were discovered in Ramon, Isabela which not been arraigned and it was upon his express motion that the case
were later identified as the bodies of Bauzon and Tuliao, son of the private was dismissed
respondent Virgilio Tuliao who is now under the witness protection
program. Two Informations for murder were filed against 5 police officers
including SPO2 Maderal in the RTC of Santiago City. The venue was later FACTS:
transferred to the RTC of Manila. The RTC convicted the accused and 1. 2 burnt cadavers were discovered in Ramon, Isabela. It was later
sentenced them two counts of reclusion perpetua except SPO2 Maderal identified to be the bodies of ​Bauzon and ​Tuliao (son of
who was yet to be arraigned at that time being at large. Upon automatic respondent Virgilio) who is now under the witness protection
review, the SC acquitted the accused on the ground of reasonable doubt. In program.
Sept. 1999, Maderal was arrested. He executed a sworn confession and 2. 2 informations for murder were filed against ​SPO1 Leaño, SPO1
identified the petitioners as the ones responsible for the death of the Marzan, SPO1 Agustin, SPO2 Micu, SPO2 Maderal and SPO4
victims, so, Tuliao filed a criminal complaint for murder against the Ramirez ​in RTC Santiago City.
petitioners. Acting Presiding Judge Tumaliuan issued a warrant of arrest 3. Venue was later moved to Manila. RTC Manila convicted all of the
against the petitioners and SPO2 Maderal. Then, the petitioners filed an accused and sentenced them to 2 counts of RP except SPO2
urgent motion to complete preliminary investigation, to reinvestigate, and Maderal who was yet to be arraigned because he was still at large.
to recall or quash the warrant of arrest. In the hearing of the urgent motion, 4. The case was appealed to the SC on automatic review and
Judge Tumaliuan noted the absence of the petitioners and issued a Joint acquitted the accused on the ground of reasonable doubt.
order denying the urgent motion on the ground that since the court did not 5. SPO2 Maderal was finally arrested. He pointed to a number of
acquire jurisdiction over their persons, the motion cannot be properly individuals as the persons responsible for the death of Bauzon and
heard by the court. Issue: W/N erred in setting aside Judge Anghad’s order Tuliao.
-- No. The SC said that ​adjudication of a motion to quash a warrant of 6. So Virgilio filed a criminal complaint for murder against the
arrest requires neither jurisdiction over the person of the accused nor petitioners (Miranda, et al) based on SPO2 Maderal’s sworn
custody of law over of the body of the accused, quashing a warrant of confession.
arrest based on a subsequently filed petition for review with the SoJ and 7. Judge Tumaliuan then issues warrants of arrests against petitioners
based on doubts endangered by the political climate constitutes GAD, and SPO2 Maderal.
dismissing a criminal case on the basis of a decision of the SC in 8. Petitioners filed a motion to complete preliminary investigation, to
another case with different accused constitutes GAD, nullification of a reinvestigate, and to quash the warrants of arrest.

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9. Judge Tumaliuan noted the absence of petitioners and denied their Adjudication of a motion to quash a warrant of arrest requires neither
motion since the court did not acquire jurisdiction over their jurisdiction over the person of the accused nor custody of law over of the
persons. body of the accused
10. In the meantime, petitioners appealed the resolutions of State
Prosecutor Reyes to the DOJ. 1. CA said that Miranda, Ocon, and Dalmacio cannot seek any
11. The new presiding judge (Judge Anghad) reversed the order of judicial relief since they were not yet arrested or deprived of their
Judge Tumaliuan. He also ordered the cancellation of the warrant liberty at the time they filed their “urgent motion to complete
of arrest of Miranda, Ocon, and Dalmacio. preliminary investigation; to reinvestigate, to quash warrants of
12. State Prosecutor Reyes and Virgilio moved for reconsideration and arrest”.
the inhibition of Judge Anghad but was denied. 2. Petitioners naman say that jurisdiction over the person of the
13. Virgilio filed for a petition for certiorari, mandamus and TRO accused is required only in applications for bail. They quoted
seeking to enjoin Judge Anghad from further proceeding with the retired CA Justice Herrera. They also said that jurisdiction over
case. their person was already acquired by their filing of the above
14. Court granted the TRO against Judge Anghad. urgent motion (quoted Santiago case)
15. Shortly after the resolution, Judge Anghad issued a Joint Order 3. SC says the Santiago cases distinguishes between ​custody of the
dismissing the 2 informations against the petitioners. law​ and ​jurisdiction over the person.​
16. Virgilio filed with the SC a motion to cite Judge Anghad in a. Custody of the law = required before the court can act
contempt for deliberately and willfully committing contempt of upon the application for bail but not required for
court when he dismissed the informations. The SC referred the adjudication of other reliefs; accomplished either by arrest
motion to the CA which it ordered the reinstatement of the or voluntary surrender → you can be under custody of
criminal cases as well as the warrants of arrest. law but not yet subject to the jurisdiction of the court over
17. So the petitioners appealed to the SC. his person like when a person arrested by virtue of a
warrant files a motion before arraignment to quash
warrant → custody of law is literally custody over the
ISSUES: body of the accused
1. W/N the CA erred in setting aside Judge Anghad’s order -- NO b. Jurisdiction over the person = acquired upon arrest or
2. W/N the CA erred in reinstating the criminal cases and for the voluntary appearance → you can be subject to the
reissuance of the warrants of arrest -- NO jurisdiction of the court over his person and not yet be in
3. W/N CA erred in reinstating the criminal case alleging that the custody of the law like when an accused escapes custody
order of dismissal issued had become final and executory -- NO after his trial has commenced.
4. GR: one who seeks an affirmative relief is deemed to have
RATIO: submitted to the jurisdiction of the court → constitutes voluntary
appearance.

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5. E: in the case of pleadings whose prayer is precisely for the b. Given by someone who rendered himself untrustworthy
avoidance of the jurisdiction of the court which only leads to a for being a fugitive for 5 years
special appearance c. Given in exchange for an obvious reward of discharge
a. In civil cases -- motions to dismiss on the ground of lack d. Given during the election period amidst a politically
of jurisdiction over the person charged scenario
b. In criminal cases -- motions to quash a complaint on 6. BUT SC said there’s no reason to disturb the findings of probable
the ground of lack of jurisdiction over the person of cause of Judge Tumaliuan.
the accused
c. Motions to quash a warrant of arrest Dismissing a criminal case on the basis of a decision of the SC in another
6. THUS, the requirement of custody of law in applications for bail case with different accused constitutes GAD
are not present in motions to quash the warrant of arrest.
1. Judge Anghad quashed the warrant of arrest on the ground that
Quashing a warrant of arrest based on a subsequently filed petition for there was a petition for review of the assistant prosecutor’s
review with the SoJ and based on doubts endangered by the political resolution before the SOJ
climate constitutes GAD 2. But after the SOJ affirmed the prosecutor’s resolution, Judge
Anghad summarily dismissed the 2 criminal cases because:
1. There’s GAD in the assailed actions of Judge Anghad. He was a a. Maderal was one of the accused in another criminal case
little too eager to dismiss the criminal cases. in which he pinpointed to Miranda as the mastermind
2. First, he quashed the standing warrant of arrest issued by his 3. There is GAD because Judge Anghad had no right to twist the
predecessor because of a subsequently filed appeal to the SOJ and SC’s decision and interpret it to the discredit of SPO2 Maderal
because of his doubts on the existence of probable cause due to the who was still at large when the evidence of the prosecution in the
political climate in the city other case was presented.
3. Second, after the SOJ affirmed the prosecution’s resolution, he 4. A decision acquitting the accused therein of a crime cannot be the
dismissed the criminal cases on the basis of a decision of the SC in basis of the dismissal of criminal case against different accused for
another case with different accused 2 days ​after the SC issued a the same crime
TRO against him. 5. Plus, the accused was acquitted in the other case based on
4. Third, Judge Anghad said Miranda’s constitutional rights were reasonable doubt; the SC never said that no crime happened.
violated regarding the issuance of the warrant of arrest Judge 6. Also, the accused in that other case had no motive to kill Virgilio’s
Tumaliuan daw relied solely on the prosecutor’s certification BUT son whereas petitioners here had been implicated in the testimony
this is untrue. The Joint Order even indicated the contrary of Virgilio before the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee.
(“personally evaluating the records”)
5. Fourth, Judge Anghad said the SPO2 Maderal’s confession was PS: Other criminal case is ​Leaño
incredible because
a. It was given after almost 2 years in the custody of the NBI

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Nullification of a proceeding necessarily carries with it the reinstatement


of the orders set aside by the nullified proceeding

1. Whether the CA ordered the issuance of new warrants of arrest or


merely ordered the reinstatement of the warrants is just a matter of
semantics -- the slight inaccuracy should not be allowed to affect
the dispositions on the merits
2. First, the CA reinstated Judge Tumaliuan’s issuance of warrants of
arrest
3. Second, the CA likewise declared the proceedings conducted by
Judge Anghad void
4. So, the declaration of nullity of proceedings should be deemed to
carry with it the reinstatement of the orders set aside by the
nullified proceedings.

No double jeopardy in the reinstatement of a criminal case dismissed


before arraignment

1. Petitioners must’ve forgotten that Virgilio’s Petition for certiorari,


prohibition and mandamus were not filed with the CA but with the
SC
2. The CA decided the case because the SC referred it to them.
3. The reinstatement of a criminal case dismissed before
arraignment does not constitute double jeopardy. Double
jeopardy cannot be invoked where the accused has not been
arraigned and it was upon his express motion that the case was
dismissed

RULING: petition is DENIED. CA decision and resolution are


AFFIRMED.

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PETITIONER​​: Antonio Gamas and Florencio Sobio


RESPONDENTS​​: Judge Orlando Oco and PNP SP04 Willie Adulacion

SUMMARY​​: Gamas and Sobrio arrested for theft of corn. They were told by
SPO4 Adulacion, police prosecutor, to plead guilty so they can get minimum
penalty, apply for probation and avoid imprisonment. They were presented to
Judge Oco, to whom they pleaded guilty. They signed a document with the
assurance that they will be considered as star witnesses. This was done without
the presence of any lawyer. They later found out that what they signed was an
order finding them guilty of theft and sentencing them to imprisonment for 6
months. After procuring a counsel and asking for a re-arraignment, they
contend that Judge Oco should be held administratively liable for rendering
judgment against them without the benefit of an arraignment and in violation
of their right counsel. Judge Oco’s defense is he knew that they wanted to plea
guilty to get a minimum sentence and to avoid imprisonment. He contends that
6. Gamas v. Oco (Mika) he informed the both of them of their rights, such as their right to counsel, but
March 17, 2004 | Carpio, J | Rule 116 Section 1- Arraignment both accused still insisted on pleading guilty. However the SC found that there
was no valid of waiver of their right to counsel. In determining whether the
accused can make a valid waiver, the court must take into the educational
attainment of the accused, considering that they were both tricycle drivers. SC
also found that Judge Oco failed to comply with the requirements for a valid
arraignment as discussed in Rule 116.
DOCTRINE:
Section 1(a) of Rule 116 requires that the arraignment should be made in
open court by the judge himself or by the clerk of court
1. furnishing the accused a copy of the complaint or information
with the list of witnesses stated therein, then
2. reading the same in the language or dialect that is known to him,
and
3. asking him what his plea is to the charge.

FACTS: ​(Administrative Case)


Facts regarding the crime are from the narration of Judge Oco

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1. Gamas and Sobrio have long pending warrants of arrest for the 8. They also contend that Judge Oco is administratively liable for
crime of theft of corn worth P4,500. They were caught with their 2 rendering judgment against them without the benefit of an
relatives hauling 3 or 4 tricycle loads of corn. arraignment and in violation of their right to be represented by
2. SPO4 Adulacion, a police prosecutor, brought Gamas and counsel.
Sobrio to Judge Oco. Defense of Judge Oco:
Facts by the Court 1. He asked Gamas and Sobrio if what Adulacion said was true and
1. Gamas and Sobria allege that they are accused in a case for theft they replied yes. From that moment, he knew that Gamas and
which was pending in the sala of Judge Oco. As the latter had Sobrio wanted things done instantly so they won’t be locked in jail.
issued warrants for their arrest, the former went to MTC Polomok 2. He read the records thoroughly in front of both the accused and
to post bail. even asked them why they were released with the tricycles in spite
2. Gamas and Sobrio alleged that SPO4 Adulacion enticed them of this apprehension, but he didn't get an answer.
to plead guilty to the charge, apply for probation and thus 3. He knows that what Gamas and Sobria wants is to plead guilty,
avoid imprisonment. get a minimum sentence, be allowed on probation, and they be
3. They allege that Adulacion, who had allegedly prepared a draft released on recognizance. Because of this, he began discoursing
decision embodying his suggestion, conferred with Judge Oco, and their rights as accused. (Right to counsel, be given free of
handed the draft decision to the latter. charge if they cannot afford to solicit services of one, to
4. After reading the document, Judge Oco signed it, told confront the witnesses and cross examine and because they had
complainants "O, plead guilty man kamo" ("O, you're pleading voluntarily articulated the desire to plead guilty)
guilty"), and handed the document to a clerk. Judge Oco told the 4. Thereafter, he arraigned them. He read to them in the dialect they
clerk to read the contents of the decision to complainants and to understand the accusation and informed them [of] the nature of the
instruct them on what to do. The clerk read the contents of the evidence arrayed but they pleaded guilty, always begging that they
document to complainants and asked them to sign it. be sentenced with the most minimum penalty, allowed probation
5. Gamas and Sobrio signed the document upon Adulacion's and released immediately in their recognizance. Thus, there was
assurance that once the police apprehend the rest of the arraignment and their plea of guilt was voluntary.
accused, the police will revive the case and Adulacion will 5. He wrote the decision in long hand in their very presence then
present complainants as "star witnesses." handed it to the typist who typed it. He signed [the 3 October 1996
6. Complainants later found out that what they signed was an Order Order], then required his court interpreter to read the whole
("3 October 1996 Order") finding them guilty of theft and decision in the language they know. He said that both accused
sentencing them each to imprisonment for 6 months and 1 day. looked satisfied that what the interpreter was reading corresponded
7. Because of this, Gamas and Sobrio sought the assistance of a with what they proposed and what we discussed. After the reading,
lawyer and upon their motion, Judge Oco vacated his 3 October Gamas and Sobrio signed the decision.
1996 Order, on the ground that they entered improvident guilty 6. In sum, he said he counselled both of their rights and gave the
pleas. They were scheduled a re-arraignment. exact penalty. There was no lawyer but it was not his problem
and since they were caught, the lawyer would not have much

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use. Although, he suggested on giving them a PAO lawyer but 2. The only instance when the court can arraign an accused without
still Gamas and Sobrio insisted on just pleading guilty. the benefit of counsel is if the accused waives such right and the
Findings of Investigating Judge court finding the accused capable, allows him to represent
1. Gamas and Sobrio did not satisfactorily waive their right to himself in person.
counsel 3. However, to be a valid waiver, the accused must make the
2. Gamas and Sobrio were not properly arraigned waiver voluntarily, knowingly, and intelligently. In
3. Gamas and Sobrio failed to adduce evidence that Adulacion was determining whether the accused can make a valid waiver, the
the one who prepared the the 3 October 1996 Order. court must take into the educational attainment of the accused.
4. Judge Oco is liable for simple neglect of duty and a P10,000 fine 4. In the present case, Judge Oco did not properly apprise
OCA’s Evaluation and Recommendation: complainants of their right to counsel prior to their arraignment.
1. Judge Oco is liable not for mere simple neglect of duty but for Consequently, there was no basis for both accused’s alleged waiver
gross ignorance of the law. Fine of P20,000 of such right.
ISSUES: 5. Judge Oco does not deny that there was no lawyer present during
1. WON Judge Oco failed to Properly Apprise Complainants of arraignment. He even said that the lawyer was their problem and it
their Right to Counsel. YES wouldn't be of much use. ​Although he informed them that they
2. WON failed to comply with requirements for valid can have a PAO lawyer, Judge Oco did not appoint a PAO
arraignment. YES. lawyer despite being informed that both accused could not
3. WON Judge’s acts constitute gross ignorance of the law. YES afford one.
RATIO: 6. SC held that his actions do not amount to compliance with Sec.
Judge Oco failed to properly apprise Gamas and Sobria of their right 6 of Rule 116. Judge Oco is grossly mistaken in saying that
to counsel. securing a "lawyer was their (complainants') problem." ​Once
1. Sec. 6 of Rule 116 means When a defendant appears [at the the accused informs the judge that he cannot afford a lawyer
arraignment] without [an] attorney, the court has four and the court has not allowed the accused to represent himself,
important duties to comply with: or the accused is incapable of representing himself, the judge
1. It must inform the defendant that it is his right to have has the duty to appoint a counsel de officio​​.
[an] attorney before being arraigned; 7. Judge Oco knew that both accused are mere tricycle drivers.
2. After giving him such information the court must ask He could not have expected complainants to be conversant with
him if he desires the aid of attorney; the rules on criminal procedure. Judge Oco should not only
3. If he desires and is unable to employ attorney, the have followed Sec. 6 of Rule 116 to the letter, but should also
court must assign [an] attorney de officio to defend have ascertained that complainants understood the import of
him; and the proceedings.
4. If the accused desires to procure an attorney of his 8. SC also found out that Gamas and Sobria did not even know
own the court must grant him a reasonable time what “plead guilty” means. ​The latter did not ask anymore what
therefor.

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it meant because Adulacion added that they will be given a lighter


sentence.
Highly Irregular Arraignment
1. Section 1(a) of Rule 116 requires that the arraignment should
be made in open court by the judge himself or by the clerk of
court
i. furnishing the accused a copy of the complaint
or information with the list of witnesses stated
therein, then
ii. reading the same in the language or dialect
that is known to him, and
iii. asking him what his plea is to the charge.
2. The requirement that the reading be made in a language or
dialect that the accused understands and knows is a mandatory
requirement, just as the whole of said Section 1 should be
strictly followed by trial courts. This the law affords the
accused by way of implementation of the all-important
constitutional mandate regarding the right of an accused to be
informed of the precise nature of the accusation leveled at him
and is, therefore, really an avenue for him to be able to hoist
the necessary defense in rebuttal thereof. It is an integral
aspect of the due process clause under the Constitution.
3. Gamas and Sobria both deny the Judge's claim that he arraigned
the latter by "reading to them [the information] in the dialect they
understand and informing them of the nature of the evidence
arrayed against them. However, there is no disputing that Judge
Oco failed to furnish complainants a copy of the information with
the list of the witnesses.
Judge Oco was found guilty of gross ignorance of the law w/ a fine of P20k.
They have no jurisdiction over SPO4 Adulacion since this is an
administrative case.

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7. People v. Apatay (Jaya) 1. the accused, in pleading guilty, is doing so voluntarily — meaning, he
July 7, 2004 | Per Curiam | Sec. 3, Rule 116 - When accused pleads guilty to was not coerced or threatened of physical harm, or placed under a state
a capital offense of duress; and
2. that he is truly guilty on the basis of his testimony.
PETITIONER: ​PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, appellee
RESPONDENTS:​​ REY APATAY y BALO, appellant. FACTS:
1. On October 20, 2000 at around 7:30 pm, Rey Apatay knew that
SUMMARY: Caridad would go to the hospital.
Catalina Baluran, 77 years old, was left alone in her house after her niece was 2. Caridad (niece of Catalina) and her mother named Toribia went to
rushed to the hospital. Rey Apatay, 24 years old, knew that Catalina was alone. the hospital together with their neighbors Odelion and Buchan.
Apatay entered the house of Catalina and raped her. Apatay was recognized by Thus, Catalina Baluran, 77 years old, was left alone in the house.
Catalina so he decided to kill Catalina by strangulation and by striking her with a 3. Apatay saw Catalina alone in the sala. Apatay entered the house
firewood several times in the head and face. A search was conducted the thru the broken sink in the kitchen. He put off the lights and forced
following day wherein Apatay joined the search. 2 days after, Catalina’s body Catalina to the room. He sexually abused Catalina by inserting his
was found. penis into her vagina.
4. Catalina tried to stop Apatay and said “Ayaw lagi, Rey” (Don’t
Apatay surrendered himself to the police because he was overwhelmed by his Rey).
conscience. He voluntarily executed a sworn statement with the assistance of his 5. Afraid that Catalina recognized him, Apatay strangled Catalina
counsel, after he was informed of his constitutional rights. Upon arraignment he until she had no voice. He then proceeded to get a firewood and
pleaded guilty. A searching inquiry was conducted by the RTC judge. used it to hit Catalina’s head and face several times until she was
motionless.
RTC found Apatay guilty beyond reasonable doubt. 6. Afterwards, Apatay carried Catalina to the abandoned toilet in the
The case was elevated to SC for automatic review. upper ground of the house and dropped her into the hole.
7. The next day, Buchan and Odelion learned that Catalina could not
SC found that the trial court has lawfully complied with the procedure under be found. They went inside the house of Catalina to look for her
Sec. 3 of Rule 116 in cases when an accused pleads guilty to a capital offense. but only saw drops of blood and a piece of wood. They
Hence, the trial court did not err in its decision. immediately conducted a search for Catalina. Apatay joined the
search.
DOCTRINE: 8. On October 22, 2000 (two days after), the body of Catalina was
There is no hard and fast rule as to how a judge may conduct a "searching found. Dr. Romulo Villaflor conducted a post-mortem
inquiry," or as to the number and character of questions he may ask the accused, examination. The post-mortem report provides that Catalina had
or as to the earnestness with which he may conduct it, since each case must be vaginal lacerations at 6, 9 and 12 o’clock positions indicating that
measured according to its individual merit. The singular barometer is that the she was a victim of a forcible sexual assault, and that she died due
judge must, in all cases, fully convince himself that: to hemorrhage secondary to multiple skull fracture.

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9. On October 24, 2000, Apatay was bothered by his conscience so b. require the prosecution to prove his guilt and the precise
he surrendered to the Sikatuna Police Station, Tagbiliran City. He degree of culpability
was assisted by PAO counsel Atty. Adriano Damalerio when he c. The accused may present evidence in his behalf.
voluntarily executed his sworn statement in the Visayan dialect 2. With regard to the searching inquiry, SC said that there is no hard
after he has been informed of his constitutional rights. and fast rule as to how a judge may conduct a "searching inquiry,"
10. An information charging Apatay of rape with homicide was filed or as to the number and character of questions he may ask the
in RTC-Tagbiliran. accused, or as to the earnestness with which he may conduct it,
11. Upon arraignment, Apatay pleaded guilty. The judge asked Apatay since each case must be measured according to its individual merit.
searching questions and confirmed the details of his extra-judicial The singular barometer is that the judge must, in all cases, fully
confession. Apatay was asked if he wants to present evidence on convince himself that:
his behalf but he opted not to. a. the accused, in pleading guilty, is doing so voluntarily —
12. RTC found Apatay guilty beyond reasonable doubt and ordered meaning, he was not coerced or threatened of physical
him to pay P100,000 as civil indemnity. harm, or placed under a state of duress; and
13. The case was elevated to Supreme Court for automatic review. b. that he is truly guilty on the basis of his testimony.
Apatay assailed the RTC decision contending that 3. Here, the above jurisprudential guidelines were faithfully complied
a. the trial court failed to conduct a searching inquiry into with by the trial judge. Records show that during the arraignment,
the voluntariness and full comprehension by hims of the the Information was read to appellant in the Visayan dialect which
consequences of his plea he speaks and understands. After he entered a plea of guilty, the
b. that the trial court did not ask him if he wants to present trial judge properly conducted a searching inquiry translated by the
evidence on his behalf court interpreter into his Visayan dialect.
14. OSG brief says that the trial court did not commit any error in 4. Records of the case show that Apatay’s answers to the trial judge's
convicting Apatay. questions are spontaneous and categorical. He declared that his
confession (that he committed the crime) is voluntary and that
ISSUE: nobody forced him to do so. He also manifested full understanding
1. W/N the trial court failed to comply with the procedure under Sec. of the consequences of his plea, specifically that the imposable
3 of Rule 116 in case an accused pleads guilty to a capital offense. penalty upon him is death. Yet, he would not change his plea.
-​ NO 5. After the prosecution present its witnesses Dr. Villaflor, Buchan
and Odelion, the trial court asked Apatay if he wanted to present
RATIO: evidence on his behalf but the defense opted not to considering
1. Sec. 3, Rule 116 provides that when the accused pleads guilty to a Apatay’s plea of guilty.
capital offense, the court shall 6. Hence, SC finds that the trial court correctly found appellant guilty
a. conduct a searching inquiry into the voluntariness and full beyond reasonable doubt of rape with homicide and properly
comprehension of the consequences of his plea imposed upon him the death penalty. It is clear from the appellant's

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extra-judicial confession and the evidence for the prosecution that


he had carnal knowledge of Catalina Baluran through force.
7. SC affirmed the decision of trial court with modification ordering
Apatay to pay the heirs of Catalina P75,000 as moral damages and
P25,000 as temperate damages in addition to the trial court's award
of P100,000.00 as civil indemnity.

SEPARATE OPINIONS: None


CONCURRING: None

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8. People v. Ong y Li (Cassie)


DOCTRINE​​: The requirement that the information should be read in a language
June 21, 2004 | Puno J. | Rule 116 Sec. 3
or dialect known to the accused is ​mandatory. It must be strictly complied with
as it is intended to protect the constitutional right of the accused to be informed
PETITIONERS: ​People of the Philippines of the nature and cause of the accusation against him. The constitutional
RESPONDENTS: ​ William Ong y Li and Ching De Ming @ Robert Tiu protection is part of due process. Failure to observe the rules necessarily nullifies
the arraignment.
SUMMARY: ​Based on prosecution through the testimony of SPO1 Rodolfo S. FACTS:
Gonzales, in the afternoon of July 23, 1998, a confidential informant (CI) of the 1. Accused William Ong y Li and Ching De Ming @ Robert Tiu
Special Operations Division (SOD), PNP Narcotics Group, reported to Chief were charged with violation of Sec. 15 Article III in relation to
Inspector Albert Ignatius D. Ferro about the alleged illicit drug activities of Section 2 Article I of RA No. 6425 or the Dangerous Drugs Act of
accused William Ong and Ching De Ming @ Robert Tiu. As per order of Chief
1972.
Inspector Ferro, a team of eight decided to conduct a buy-bust operation. Once,
CI confirmed the meeting time and venue with the drug dealer, and exchanges of 2. The information states that the two accused “did then and there
gift-wrapped packages rendered of one (1) sealed plastic bag with a white willfully and unlawfully sell or offer for sale 980.50 grams of
crystalline substance by the accused Ong and boodle money placed in a “W. Methyl Amphetamine Hydrochloride, which is a regulated drug.”
Brown” plastic bag by SPO1 Gonzales, thereafter, the latter arrested Ong while 3. The records did not show whether they had sufficient knowledge
the CI and the back-up agents arrested co-accused De Ming. The two (2) accused of English language but during the course of the trial, the two
were brought to the police office where the corresponding booking sheets and accused were given the service of a Chinese interpreter.
arrest report were prepared. The plastic bag containing the illegal drug 4. On July 1998, at around 5:00 pm, a confidenital informant of the
substance, was referred to the Philippine National Police (PNP) Crime
Special Operations Division (SOD), PNP Narcotics Group,
Laboratory for examination, positive for methyl amphetamine hydrochloride or
shabu, a regulated drug. However, the appellants denied the story of the reported to Chief Inspector Ferro about illicit drug activities of a
prosecution. certain William Ong and an unidentified Chinese male partner.
5. A buy-bust operation was conducted. The confidential informant
The issue before the SC is whether or not the accused are guilty of the crime (CI) called up the alleged pusher, placed an order for one kilo of
charged. The Court held no because of violation of Rule 116 of the Rules of shabu and agreed to a P600K consideration. They agreed to meet
Court. From the records, it was clear that appellants only knew the Chinese on July 24, 1998 at 6th St. cor. Gilmore Avenue, New Manila,
language, however the appellants were arraigned on an information written in Quezon City, between 4:00 to 5:00 am.
the English language. The requirement that the information should be read in a
6. The CI received a call from the drug dealer changing the meeting
language or dialect known to the accused is mandatory. It must be strictly
complied with as it is intended to protect the constitutional right of the accused time between 2-3:00 pm.
to be informed of the nature and cause the of the accusation against him. The 7. Ong approached the car of the team. The CI introduced him to
constitutional protection is part of due process. Failure to observe the rules SPO1 Gonzales who told accused Ong in broken Tagalog to get in
necessarily nullifies the arraignment. After the arraignment and in the course of the car. When Ong inquired about the money in payment of the
the trial, the lower court had to secure the services of a certain Richard Ng Lee shabu, SPOI Gonzales showed him the slightly opened plastic bag
as Chinese interpreter. containing the boodle money.

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8. When SPO1 Gonzales asked to see the shabu, Ong went out of the
car, walked a few steps and then waved his right to somebody. CHING DE MING’S VERSION:
While waiving, Gonzales saw a green Toyota Corolla coming. 1. He testified that he is a legitimate businessman engaged in the
Ching De Ming @ Robert Tiu alighted, approached Ong and RTW business.
handed to him a gift-wrapped package. 2. While waiting inside his car for his girlfriend and her mother who
9. Gonzales opened it and inside was one sealed plastic bag with a just went in a townhouse on that fateful day and place, he was
white crystalline substance. SPO1 Gonzales handed the money in a approached by persons unknown to him.
plastic bad and thereafter signaled his back-up team by turning on 3. They asked what he was doing there and a person pointed at him
the hazard lights of the car. saying “maybe he is the one.”
10. Gonzales himself arrested Ong while the CI and back-up agents 4. He was then dragged out of his car and brought to the other car.
arrested De Ming. They took his clutch bag, blindfolded and brought him to a place.
They removed his blindfold at Camp Crame. He dnied knowing
ONG’S VERSION: Ong and the charge of conspiring with him to deliver shabu in New
1. William Ong, a Chinese citizen from the People’s Republic of Manila QC.
China, claimed that he came to Philippine in 1997 to look for a job. 5. Avelina Cardoz, the mother of his girlfriend who is a divine healer,
2. He was able to work in a pancit canton factory in QC upon corroborated his story. She asked the accused to accompany her in
recommendation of a friend. He then stopped working at the that place to cure a patient but when she and her daughter returned
factory in June 1998 and hunted for another job. Two weeks prior to the car, the accused was nowhere to be found.
to his arrest, Ong was introduced by his friend Kian Ling to Ong
Sin for a possible job as a technician in a bihon factory owned by RTC: convicted appellants and imposed on them penalty of death. The case
Ong Sin. went directly to the SC on automatic review.
3. Ong Sn called up and set a meeting at the Tayuman branch of
Jollibee. Ong Sin called Ong saying that he could not meet him ISSUE: Whether or not the accused are guilty of the crime charged
and that his twp-workers would pick him.
4. Ong joined the two men in the yellow car and upon reaching a RULING: NO.
certain place, the driver reached for his cellphone and called up 1. Rule 116, Section 1(a) of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure
someone. Ong Sin was on the line and informed him that the driver provides:
would accompany him to the bihon factory. SECTION 1. Arraignment and plea; how made. —
5. The driver went out of the car and Ong followed him. Upon (a) The accused must be arraigned before the court where the
returning to the car after picking up something, the companion of complaint or information was filed or assigned for trial. ​The
the driver poked a gun at him, arrested, blindfolded and brought arraignment shall be made in open court by the judge or clerk by
him to an undisclosed place. furnishing the accused with a copy of the complaint or
6. Several hours after, he was taken to the police station where he met information, reading the same in the language or dialect known
Ching De Ming for the first time. to him, and asking him whether he pleads guilty or not guilty. The

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prosecution may call at the trial witnesses other than those named 9. Appellants' conviction is based on the lone testimony of SPO1
in the complaint or information. Gonzales​​. He was the designated poseur-buyer in the team formed
2. The arraignment of appellants violated the above rule. Appellants for the buy-bust operation. But a careful reading of his testimony
are Chinese Nationals. Their Certificate of Arraignment states that will reveal that ​he was not privy to the sale transaction that
they were informed of the accusations against them. ​It does not, transpired between the CI and appellant William Ong​​, the
however, indicate whether the Information was read in the alleged pusher. It is beyond contention that a contract of sale is
language or dialect known to them. perfected upon a meeting of the minds of the parties on the object
3. Neither does the August 4, 1998 Order of Judge Diosdado M. and its price.
Peralta of RTC-Br. 95, Quezon City, disclose compliance with the 10. Not all elements of the sale were established by the testimony
rule on arraignment. It merely stated in part that "[w]hen both of SPO1 Gonzales
accused William Ong y Li and Ching De Ming @ Robert Tiu were 11. It is abundantly clear that it was the CI who made the initial
arraigned, assisted by counsel de parte, both accused entered a plea contact, albeit only through the telephone, with the pusher. ​The
of not guilty CI was likewise the one who closed the deal with appellant Ong as
4. From the records, it is clear that appellants only knew the Chinese to the quantity of shabu to be purchased and its price. He also set
language. the venue and time of the meeting when the sale would take
5. After arraignment and in the course of the trial, the lower court had place.
to secure the services of a certain Richard Ng Lee as Chinese 12. It is therefore understandable that in his account of his meeting
interpreter. with appellant William Ong, SPO1 Gonzales made no reference to
6. What leaps from the records of the case is the inability of any further discussion of the price and the quantity of the shabu.
appellants to fully or sufficiently comprehend any other language 13. Since ​only the CI had personal knowledge of the offer to
than Chinese and any of its dialect. Despite this inability, however, purchase shabu, the acceptance of the offer and the
the appellants were arraigned on an Information written in the consideration for the offer​​, we hold ​that SPO1 Gonzales is, in
English language effect, not the "poseur-buyer" but merely the delivery man.
7. We again emphasize that the requirement that the information 14. The Court also held that the prosecution failed to establish its
should be read in a language or dialect known to the accused is claim of entrapment. The Court stressed the ​“objective” test in
mandatory. It must be strictly complied with as it is intended to buy-bust operations. The prosecution must present a complete
protect the ​constitutional right of the accused to be informed of picture detailing the transaction, which "​must start from the
the nature and cause of the accusation against him. The initial contact between the poseur-buyer and the pusher, the
constitutional protection is part of due process. Failure to observe offer to purchase, the promise or payment of the consideration
the rules necessarily nullifies the arraignment. until the consummation of the sale by the delivery of the illegal
8. More important than the invalid arraignment of the appellants, ​we drug subject of the sale.
find that the prosecution evidence failed to prove that 15. In the case at bar, the prosecution evidence about the buy-bust
appellants willfully and unlawfully sold or offered to sell operation is incomplete. The confidential informant who had sole
shabu.

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knowledge of how the alleged illegal sale of shabu started and how
it was perfected was not presented as a witness.
16. SPO1 Gonzales' testimony is hearsay and possesses no probative
value unless it can be shown that the same falls within the
exception to the hearsay rule.
17. Should the confidential informant be presented in Court? YES. In
the case at bar, the crime charged the appellants is capital in
character and can result in the imposition of the death penalty.
Where the testimony of the informer is indispensable, it should be
disclosed.

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