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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)

Vena V. Verga
I. History of the Revised Penal Law Codification Movement -- sought to have all
laws codified or written in a single body of aw. Spanish Codigo Penal which, wit
hout expressly prohibiting certain acts, impose a penalty on their commission. N
ote: Non-payment of taxes is merely a civil liability/indemnity. The tax code as
it exists today which carries punishments may be considered penal provisions. P
eople vs. Moran Facts: The accused violated the election code and was sentenced
by the lower court. He was asking for reconsideration and filed a special motion
alleging that the crime complained of had prescribed under the provision of sec
tion 71 of Act 3030, enacted by the Legislature on March 9, 1922. Issue: W/N pen
al laws provide for not only penalty but also prescription. Decision: Yes. Decis
ion: The court found the crime to have prescribed (in accordance with the new la
w) and set aside the decision. The Election law contained in the Administrative
Code and Act 3030 which amended and modified the former, it is evident that the
provision declaring that offenses resulting from the violations of said Act shal
l prescribe one year after their commission must have retroactive effect, the sa
me being favorable to the accused. An exception- to give them retroactive effect
when favorable to accused. The exception applies to a law dealing with prescrip
tion of crime: Art 22 applies to a law dealing with prescription of an offense w
hich is intimately connected with that of the penalty, for the length of time fo
r prescription depends upon the gravity of the offense. Penal laws not only prov
ide for penalties but also prescriptions. III. Rationale of Penal Laws US vs. So
tto Facts: Vicente Sotto is the director, editor, publisher and printer of a wee
kly paper. On May 1915, he edited the paper with the intention of attacking them
reputation of Lope K. Santos and two other principals of a labor group. He was
found guilty of libel. Issue: W/N Sotto was guilty Decision: Yes. Penalties are
used to deter people from doing the same crime. A deterrent effect upon others i
s one of the purposes of the infliction of a penalty for the violation of the cr
iminal law (Exemplarity). People vs. Carillo and Raquenio
A. B.
The royal order dated December 17, 1886, directing the execution of the royal de
cree of September 4, 1884, wherein it was ordered that the Penal Code in force i
n the Peninsula, as amended in accordance with the recommendations of the code c
ommittee, be published and applied in the Philippine Islands, as well as the Pro
visional Law of Criminal Procedure which accompanied it. These two laws, having
been published in the Official Gazette of Manila on March 13 and 14, 1887, becam
e effective in July 14, 1876. (US. vs. Tamparong)
C. D.
Codigo Penal ng Pilipinas modified the Spanish Penal Code. US Period they tried
to translate the Penal code but certain areas were defectively translated
II. Definition of Penal Law and Criminal Law
A. B. C. D. E. F.
Penal laws laws which relates to penalties Criminal laws laws which relates to c
rimes Felony -- A crime under the Revised Penal Code is referred to as a felony.
Do not use this term in reference to a violation of special law. Offense -- A c
rimes punished under a special law is called as statutory offense. Misdemeanor -A minor infraction of the law, such as a violation of an ordinance, is referred
to as a misdemeanor. Crime -- Whether the wrongdoing is punished under the Revi
sed Penal Code or under a special law, the generic word crime can be used.

Lorenzo vs. Posadas Issue: W/N Art. 3606 of a tax law is a penal law thus can be
applied retroactively in conformity with the provisions of Art. 22 of RPC. Deci
sion: A statute is penal when it imposes punishment for an offense committed aga
inst the state. Penal Statutes are statutes, which command or prohibit certain act
s and establish penalties for their violation, and even those,
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Facts: Carillo was sentenced with death penalty for the crimes of robbery, attem
pted rape and homicide. His accomplice was only charged for robbing Emma Abaya a
nd Marcelino Lontok. Issue: W/N the penalty for Carillo was justified. Decision:
The accused is a dangerous enemy of the society thus, imposition of the highest
penalty if justified. Carillo has proved himself to be a dangerous enemy of soc
iety. The latter must protect itself from such enemy by taking his life in retri
bution for his offense and as an example and warning to others. In these days of
rampant criminality it should have a salutary effect upon the criminally minded
to know that the courts do not shirk their disagreeable duty to impose the deat
h penalty in cases where the law so requires. People vs. Young Facts: Jimmy Youn
g is a hired killer who committed a crime of murder under Art 248 of the RPC. He
refused to plea guilty because according to him, his guilt is lighter than thos
e who ordered the killing of Alfonso Liongto. He was sentenced with death penalt
y in accordance with Art 248 in relation to Art 64 of the RPC. However, RA 296,
which was approved 17 June 1948, provides that for a penalty of death is imposed
, all justices of the Supreme Court must first concur. Said law is procedural th
us can be applied to cases pending at the time of its approval. Issue: W/N Young
should be charged with the crime of murder. Decision: One of the justices disse
nted, thus death penalty was not imposed. The killing in question was attended b
y evident premeditation which qualified the crime as murder: (a) it was committe
d in consideration of a price reward or promise and (b) with treachery. This cas
e also provides the notion of aggravating circumstances (acts that would provide
for higher penalties art 14) and mitigating circumstances (provides for lighter
penalties art 13). Death penalty was imposed to rationalize the concept of Exem
plarity: making a person example to serve as a deterrent) People vs. Revilla Fac
ts: The accused was charged for the crime of infidelity in the custody of the pr
isoners. Nicasio Junio, the prisoner, was only sentenced to suffer six days of a
rresto menor only, a penalty that may be served in the house of the offender bec
ause of the condition of his health. The municipality also could not feed him Ni
casio for lack of appropriation, Revilla then believed that this act in permitti
ng Nicasio to sleep in his own house was not grave in nature, being at most a me
re relaxation of the rules prescribed for the care and custody of municipal pris
oners. Revilla was charged under Art 223 for his actions.
Vena V. Verga
Issue: W/N the charge against Revilla is proportionate to the act he committed.
Decision: No. His action then was due to a mistaken conception of his duty, henc
e it is obvious that the penalty imposed against him is notoriously excessive to
the extent of being cruel for being out of proportion with the crime committed.
The penalty was not proportionate to the evil to be curbed. Retribution, the pe
nalty should be commensurate with the gravity of the offense. The penalty impose
d upon the accused for infidelity in the custody of a prisoner sentenced to only
six days of arresto menor being excessive, such fact should be brought to the a
ttention of His Excellency, the President of the Philippines for him to decide w
hether or not it would be convenient to recommend to the national assembly the a
mendment of art 223 of RPC (conniving with or consenting to evasion) so as to ma
ke it more in consonance with the amplitude of the matters that a court must con
sider in meting out punishment to whoever may have the misfortune f infringing t
he precept regarding infidelity in the custody of prisoners or detained prisoner
s. People vs. Galano Facts: Galano was accused of falsification of one peso bill
, which he used to purchase four eggs. He was found guilty and was sentenced to
suffer intermediate penalty ranging from 10 years and 1 day to 12 years and 10 m
onths. The Solicitor General believes that the punishment is too harsh. Issue: W
/N the penalty if too harsh Decisions: The punishment is too harsh and it may no
t actually serve the purpose of the legislator. Imprisonment may change an indiv
idual but it can also expose the person to hardened criminal. Thus, punishments
should be applied with care. A copy of the decision was sent to the president fo
r the exercise of executive clemency. IV. Two theories in Criminal Law

1. 2. 3. 4.
Classical Theory Basis of criminal liability is human free will and purpose of p
enalty is retribution An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. Oculo pro oculo, den
te pro dente.] Man is a moral creature with absolute free will to choose between
good and evil, thereby placing more stress upon the effect or result of felonio
us act than upon the man. Endeavored to establish a mechanical and direct propor
tion between crime and penalty
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5. The purpose of penalty is retribution. The offender is made to suffer for the
wrong he has done. There is scant regard to the human element.
Vena V. Verga
provisions of a municipal ordinance. The petitioner was criminally convicted by
the trial court for not paying the surcharge. Issue: W/N the petitioner can be p
rosecuted criminally of her non-payment of the rental. Decision: No. The surchar
ge for non-payment if not a penalty under criminal law but only an amount added
to the usual charge. It is more of an administrative penalty, which can be recov
ered only by civil action. VI. Common Law Crimes
Positivist theory 1. Man is occasionally subdued by a strange and morbid phenome
nal which pushes him to do wrong in spite or contrary to his volition 2. Crime i
s a social and natural phenomenon, it cannot be created and checked by applicati
on of abstract principle of law and jurisprudence nor by imposition of penalties
, fixed and determined a priori. 3. Rehabilitation by means of individual measur
es on case to case basis. Advocates personal and individual investigation, condu
cted by competent body of psychiatrist and social scientist.
A. B. C.
Crimes Definition 1. Felony 2. Offense 3. Infraction of Ordinance (a) When penal
ty imposed is not an exercise of sovereign power to define crimes and provide pu
definition: body of principles, usages and rules of action which
their authority upon any express or positive declaration of the
islature common law crimes are not recognized in the country the
vement provided for all crimes to be codified, thus, a crime not
aw is not a crime at all.

do not rest for

will of the leg
codification mo
punishable by l

VII.Power to define and punish crimes

People vs. Santiago Facts: Defendant was found guilty of killing a seven-year-ol
d boy. He is now appealing the decision stating that Act 2886 of the Philippine
Legislature, which provides that all prosecution for offenses shall be in the nam
e of the People of the Philippines is unconstitutional for amending General Order
No. 58 which has a character of a constitutional law. Issue: W/N Act 2886 is un
constitutional. Decision: The procedure in criminal matters is not incorporated
in the constitution but is left in the hands of the legislature so that it falls
within the real of public statutory law. The state has the authority, under its
police power, to define and punish crimes and to lay down the rules of criminal
procedure. States, as a part of their police power, have a large measure of dis
cretion in creating and defining criminal offenses. People vs. Taylor Facts: The
defendant, being the acting editor and proprietor, manager, printer and publish
er of Manila Bulletin was accused of committing libel against a member of the Ph
ilippine bar. Issue: W/N the defendant is guilty of libel.
De Guzman vs. Subido Facts: de Guzman who is a civil service eligible for passin
g the civil service exam was disqualified from any appointment for having violat
ed the Jaywalking laws and ordinance concerning cocheros, which according to the
lower court constitutes a crime. Issue: W/N said acts constitute a crime Decisi
on: No. A penalty imposed for breach of a municipal regulation does not necessar

ily constitute a criminal offense. A violation of a municipal ordinance to quali

fy as a crime must involve a least a certain degree of evil doing, immoral condu
ct, corruption, malice or want of principles reasonably related to the requireme
nts of the public office. A crime is an act committed or omitted in violation of
public laws. Ordinances are not public laws. Criminal acts, in its commission,
have some immoral intention. Conde vs. Mamenta Facts: Petitioner refused to pay
the new rates of the stall she was holding stating that the increased rate was e
xcessive. The increase is based on the
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Decision: In the Philippines, there exist no crimes called common law crimes No ac
t constitutes a crime here unless it is made so by law. Libel is made a crime he
re by Act 277 of the US Philippine Commission. However, in order to prove that t
he defendant is Guilty of the crime, it must be proven that he is the auditor, ed
itor, or proprietor of the said newspaper. There was no proof of this because evi
dence shows that he is merely the manager. Petition was dismissed. People vs. Po
mar Facts: The manager of La Flor granted a maternity leave to Macaria but refus
ed to pay Php 80.00 to which the employee is entitled as her regular wage as sta
ted in Sec. 13 of Act 3071. Issue: W/N Act 3071 us unlawful exercise of police p
ower. Decision: The police power is the power vested in the legislature of the s
tate to make, ordain, and establish all manner of wholesome and reasonable laws,
statutes, and ordinances, either with penalties or without, which are not repug
nant to the constitution as they shall judge to be for the good and welfare of t
he commonwealth, and of the subjects of the state US vs. Pablo Facts: Andres Pab
lo, a policeman, reported that he saw Rodrigo and Malicsi in the jueteng arena a
nd then testified on the contrary during the trial. He was charged with perjury
and convicted under Act. 1697 which was said to have repealed articles 318 and 3
24 of the penal code. Issue: Can the defendant be punished? Decision: The right
of prosecution and punishment for a crime is one of the attributes that by a nat
ural law belongs to the sovereign power instinctively charged by the common will
of the members of society to look after, guard and defend the interests of the
community as well as rights of each individual. Imposing punishments should be t
he last resort: our laws do not merely provide for retribution but it also provi
des for laws that are in favor of the offender. US vs. Gustillo Facts: Gustillo
was already convicted of a crime for illegal possession of firearms. However, an
other information was filed against him for the same crime but for a different a
mmunition which he already possessed at the same time and same place the first i
nformation was filed against him. Issue: W/N Gustillo may be prosecuted for the
second time for the same violation. Decision:
Vena V. Verga
The prosecution violated the Philippines Bill and Act No. 89 which embody the pr
inciple that no person shall be twice put in jeopardy for the same offense becau
se this rule covers as nearly as possible every single criminal act born of a si
ngle criminal intent even though more than one crime is committed by said act. P
eople vs. Chong Hong Facts: The defendants were convicted for violation of Ordin
ance No. 394, which prohibits the playing of jueteng. The court ordered for the
dismissal of the case on the ground that said ordinance is null and void for it
conflicts with Art 195 of the RPC, which provides for lesser penalties than the
ordinance. Issue W/N Ordinance 394 conflicts with the law. Decision: It is admit
ted that jueteng is already prohibited and penalized in article 195 of the Revis
ed Penal Code. But the fact that an act is already prohibited and penalized by a
general law does not preclude the enactment of a municipal ordinance covering t
he same matter. The rule is well settled that the same act may constitute an off
ense against both the state and a political subdivision thereof and both jurisdi
ctions may punish the act, without. infringing any constitutional principle. As
a general rule, additional regulation to that of the state law does not constitu
te a conflict therewith. The fact that an ordinance enlarges upon the provisions
of a statute by requiring more than the statute requires creates no conflict th
erewith, unless the statute limits the requirement for all cases to its own pres
cription. Both the ordinance and RPC prohibit and penalize the same act and the
distinction in penalties is necessary because of the peculiar conditions of the
locality. Ngo Yao Tit and Chia Eng Cheng vs. Sheriff of Manila Facts: Before the
court is an application for the writ of habeas corpus. Petitioners were charged
of visiting a house where opium was smoked. They now claimed that the court err
ed in their decision because it does not have jurisdiction over the case. Issue:
W/N the court has jurisdiction to try the case. Decision: It is not a jurisdict
ional defect and one which deprives the trial court of its authority to try, con

vict, and pass sentence, that a criminal action is brought in the name of the ci
ty of Manila instead of the United States. That fact constitutes a mere defect o
r error curable at any stage of the action does not deprive the court of the pow
er to pronounce a valid judgment and impose a valid sentence. Offenses committed
in the Philippines are crimes against the people of the Philippines.
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1. VIII.Characteristics of criminal law (a) (b)
Vena V. Verga
Persons subject to Military Law (Art. 2 of the Commonwealth Act No. 408, article
s of war) are not immune from suit but are covered by the articles of war. Offic
ers, members of nurse corps and soldiers belonging to the regular forces of the
Philippine Army All reservist from the date of theor call to active duty and whi
le on such active duty All trainees undergoing military duty All persons lawfull
y called/drafted Cades. Flying cadets and probationary third lieutenants Retaine
rs to the camp All persons under sentence adjudged by courts martial As provided
in the treaties and laws of preferential application. Example: Bases agreements
between US and Philippines and RP-US Visiting Forces Accord. RA No. 75 law of p
referential application in favor of diplomatic representatives. It extends the d
iplomatic privilege to the members of the household and domestic servants that w
ere registered with the DFA The constitution is a law of preferential operation
By virtue of principles of Pubic international law these people possess immunity
from the criminal jurisdiction of the country of their sojourn and cannot be su
ed, arrested or punished by the law of that country: Absolute Exemptions (a) Sov
ereigns and other chiefs of state (b) Ambassadors, ministers plenipotentiary, mi
nisters resident, and charges daffaires, ambassadors extraordinary (Vienna Conven
tion on Diplomatic Relations and Protocol) Relative Exemptions (c) consuls and v
ice consuls: honorary consuls not exempted. Note: a) b) Public International Law
and treaties are deemed part of the law of the land. For a person to be immune,
he/she must be able to invoke a provision of public international law/treaty; l
aw of preferential application or customary international law.
GENERAL -- criminal law is binding on all persons who live or sojourn in Philipp
ine territory (art 14, New Civil Code).
People vs. Galacgac Facts: Enrique Galacgac was a naturalized US citizen. He arr
ived in the Philippines to visit his wife and in his possession is a gun, which
is gift to the said spouse. Upon reaching his in-laws home, he and his wife had a
fight, which caused his brother in law to beat him on the head. In retaliation,
he fired indiscriminately wounding his wifes brothers and sisters. He was accuse
d of attempted parricide but retorted that the Philippines has no jurisdiction o
ver him since he is an American Citizen. Issue: W/N Galagcac enjoys extra-territ
oriality rights Decision: No. No foreigner enjoys in this country extra-territor
ial right to be exempted from its laws and jurisdiction, with exception of heads
of states and diplomatic representatives who, by virtue of customary law of nat
ions, are not subject to the Philippine territorial jurisdiction. Note: As a gen
eral rule, the jurisdiction of the civil courts is not affected by the military
character of the accused US vs. Sweet Facts: Sweet was an employee of the US Arm
y in the Philippines. He assaulted a prisoner of war for which he was charged wi
th the crime of physical injuries. Sweet interposed the defense that the fact th
at he was an employee of the US military authorities deprived the court if the j
urisdiction to try and punish him. Issue: W/N Philippine courts have jurisdictio
n to try Sweet Decision: An assault committed by a military employee upon a pris
oner of war is a violation of the general penal law, and as such it imposes crim
inal responsibility. Jurisdiction of the civil tribunals is unaffected by the mi
litary or other special character of the person brought before them for trial, u
nless controlled by express legislation to the contrary. Exemptions to the Princ
iple of Generality 3. 2.
(c) (d) (e) (f) (g)
(a) (b)

Schneckenburger vs. Moran Facts: Petitioners is a honorary consul of Uruguay in
manila charged with falsification of private documents. He objected on the juris
diction of the Courts
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of First Instance on the ground that under the Philippine an US constitution, lo
wer courts have no jurisdiction to try him Issue: W/N the lower courts have juri
sdiction to try the consul. Decision: It is well settled that a consul is not en
titled to the privileges and immunities of an ambassador or minister, but is sub
ject to the laws and regulations of the country to which he is accredited. A con
sul is not exempt from criminal prosecution for violations of the laws of the co
untry where he resides. Courts of First Instance were vested with original juris
diction over all criminal cases in which a penalty of more than six months impr
isonment or a fine exceeding one hundred dollars might be imposed. Such jurisdic
tion included the trial of criminal actions brought against consuls. Time Inc. v
s. Reyes Facts: Enrile and Villegas filed a suit against Time Inc for an article
regarding corruption in Asia where the two were featured. RA 4363 provides that
public officials should file their petitions in the place where they are render
ing their service. Villegas filed his petition in Rizal and not in Manila. Issue
: W/N the case will prosper and W/N corporations may be sued Decision: The rule
is that where a statute creates a right and provides a remedy for its enforcemen
t, the remedy is exclusive; and where it confers jurisdiction upon a particular
court, that jurisdiction is likewise exclusive, unless otherwise provided. Hence
, the venue provisions of Republic Act No. 4363 should be deemed mandatory for t
he party bringing the action, unless the question of venue should be waived by t
he defendant which was not the case here. A corporation is immune from suit but
it may, by writ of prohibition, seek relief against the wrongful assumption of j
urisdiction. And a foreign corporation seeking a writ of prohibition against fur
ther maintenance of a suit, on the ground of want of jurisdiction, is not bound
by the ruling of the court in which the suit was brought. WHO vs. Aquino Facts:
Respondent judge issued a search warrant for the search and seizure of the perso
nal effects of the petitioner, an official of the WHO. Despite intervention of t
he Solicitor General and the DFA that Mr. Verstuyft is covered with diplomatic i
mmunity, the judge refused to withdraw the search warrant. Issue: W/N the action
of the judge is a violation of RA 75 and thus an abuse of discretion. Decision:
Yes. It is a recognized principle of international law and under our system of
separation of powers that diplomatic immunity is essentially a political questio
n and courts should refuse to look beyond a determination by 1. 2. 3. 4.
Vena V. Verga
the executive branch of the government, and where the plea of diplomatic immunit
y is recognized and affirmed by the executive branch of government as, in the ca
se at bar, it is then the duty of the courts to accept the claim of immunity upo
n appropriate suggestion by the principal law officer of the government, the Sol
icitor General in this case, or other officer acting under his direction. Hence,
in adherence to the settled principle that courts may not so exercise their jur
isdiction by seizure and detention of property, as to embarrass the executive ar
m of the government in conducting foreign relations, it is accepted doctrine tha
t "in such cases the judicial department of (this) government follows the action
of the political branch and will not embarrass the latter by assuming an antago
nistic jurisdiction."
PRINCIPLE OF TERRITORIALITY -- As a rule. Penal laws of the Philippines are enfo
rceable only within its territory. If the power to define crimes is the power of
the sovereign, it must be followed that such sovereign can only exercise such p
ower within its jurisdiction/territory. Territory Atmosphere Interior Waters Mar
itime zone
Note: Limits of the territorial sea (by UNCLOS) is only 3 miles from the seashor
e. What is followed now is the 12-mile rule plus the 12-mile contiguous zone. Bu
t for purposes of criminal law, our jurisdiction only extends to the territorial
sea. Classification of Vessels: 1. Foreign public vessels war vessels/war ships

(ex. Lawton Ship in US vs. Fowler). War vessels are considered to be an extensi
on of the nationality of the owner of said vessel and cannot be subjected to the
laws of the state (a) US vs. Fowler Facts: Theft was committed on board a trans
port while navigating the high seas. The accused were brought to trial and defen
dants contends that the Court of First Instance have no jurisdiction over the ca
se because the crime was committed in a foreign public vessel and on high seas.
Issue: W/N the court has jurisdiction to try the case. Decision: No. Courts of F
irst Instance of the Philippines have no jurisdiction to take cognizance of crim
es committed on the high seas on board of a transport or other vessel not regist
ered or licensed in the Philippines. Warships are Foreign Public Vessels
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always reputed to be the territory of the country to which they belong an cannot
be subjected to the laws of another state. A US Army transport is considered a
warship. 2. Foreign merchant vessels more or less subjected to the territorial l
Vena V. Verga
US vs. Look Chaw Facts: The defendant was charged with unlawful possession and s
ale of opium. He was on board the steamship Errol, which was of English national
ity, which came from Hong Kong and was bound to Mexico via the ports of Manila.
The defense moved for the dismissal of the case on the ground that the courts ha
ve no jurisdiction since the act does not constitute a crime. Issue: W/N the cou
rts have jurisdiction over a foreign vessel in transit. Decision: Mere possessio
n of opium aboard a foreign merchant vessel in transit is not triable in the Phi
lippines, because that fact alone does not constitute a breach of public order.
The mere possession of opium on such a ship, without being used in our territory
, does not bring about in this country those disastrous effects that our law con
templates on avoiding. But our courts acquire jurisdiction when the tunes of opi
um are landed from the vessel on Philippine sol. Landing or using opium is an op
en violation of the Philippine laws. (c) US vs. Ah Sing Facts: Defendant is a fi
reman of the steamship Shun Chang, a foreign steamer, which docked at the port o
f Cebu. Defendant brought eight cans of opium and upon inspection, authorities f
ound said substances. A charge of illegal importation was served against him. Is
sue: W/N the crime of illegal importation of opium in to the Philippines was pro
ven. Decision: When a foreign merchant vessel is not in transit because the Phil
ippines is its terminal port, the person in possession of opium on board the ves
sel is liable, because he may be held guilty of illegal importation of opium. Im
portation is complete when the ship anchored in the Philippine port. It is not n
ecessary that the opium be discharged or taken from the ship (US vs. Jose). Exem
ptions to the territorial application of criminal law Article 2 of RPC provides
that its provisions shall be forced outside of the jurisdiction of the Philippin
es against those who: 1) Should commit an offense while on a Philippine ship or
airship. Foreign Merchant Vessels not in transit
Note: The state is not obligated to give immunity on crimes done in foreign publ
ic vessels. This is just a matter of comity. Rules as to jurisdiction over crime
s committed aboard foreign merchant vessels while in the territorial waters of a
nother country 1. French Rule such crimes are not triable in the courts of that
country, unless their commission affects the peace and security of the territory
or the safety of the state is endangered. French courts therefore claim exclusi
ve jurisdiction over crimes committed on board French merchant vessels in foreig
n ports by one member of the crew against another. (US vs. Bull) English Rule The
English only exercise their jurisdiction on issues that involve the internal ma
nagement of vessel, otherwise, such crimes are triable in that country where the
y were committed. (US vs. Bull)
Note: In the Philippines, we observe the English rule (a) US vs. Bull Facts: H.N
Bull, who was the master of a vessel transporting cattle, carabao and other ani
mals from Formosa to Manila, failed to provide suitable means for securing anima
s while they are in transit. Such neglect was a violation of Act. No. 275 of the
Philippine Commission. Bull contends that the Philippine courts have no jurisdi
ction over his offense. Issue: W/N the Philippines has jurisdiction over this ca
se. Decision: When a vessel comes within 3 miles from the headland which embrace
the entrance of Manila Bay, the vessel is within the territorial waters and thu
s, the laws of the Philippines shall apply. A continuing crime committed on boar
d a Norwegian merchant vessel sailing to the Philippines is within the jurisdict
ion of the courts of the Philippine when the forbidden conditions existed during

the time the ship was within the territorial waters, regardless of the fact tha
t the same conditions existed when the ship sailed from the foreign port and whi
le it was on the high seas. (b) Foreign Merchant Vessel In Transit Foreign Merch
ant Vessels
Note: A Philippine vessel or aircraft must be understood as that which is regist
ered in the Philippine Bureau of Customs. It is the registration of the vessel o
r aircraft in accordance with the laws of the Philippines, not the citizenship o
f its owner, which makes it a Philippine ship or airship.
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Vena V. Verga
Decision: Yes. By virtue of the Treaty of Paris, Spain ceded the Philippine Isla
nds to the US. It is but a logical construction that wherever "Spain" is mention
ed in the Penal Code, it should be substituted by the words "United States" and
wherever "Spaniards" are mentioned, the word should be substituted by the expres
sion, "citizens of the United States and citizens of the Philippine Islands." Pi
racy is a crime not against any particular State but against all mankind. It may
be punished in the competent tribunal of any country where the offender may be
found or into which lie may be carried. The jurisdiction of piracy unlike all ot
her crimes has no territorial limits. Note: This case is an exception to the exc
When the offender should forge or counterfeit any coin or currency note of the P
hilippines or obligations and securities by the Government.
Note: Counterfeiting or forging Philippine coins or bank notes in a foreign coun
try may be prosecuted before Philippine civil courts. 3) When the offender shoul
d be liable for acts connected with the introduction to the Philippines of the o
bligations and securities mentioned in the preceding number.
Note: Introducing fake currency in the Philippine is as dangerous as forging or
counterfeiting of the same, to the economical interest of the country. 4) When t
he offender, while being a public officer or employee, should commit an offense
in the exercise of his functions.
Note: crimes that may be committed, even in abroad, in the exercise of public fu
nctions are: a) b) c) d) e) f) g) h) i) 5) direct bribery indirect bribery fraud
s against the public treasury possession of prohibited interest malversation of
public funds or property failure of accountable officer to render accounts illeg
al use of public funds or property failure to make delivery of public funds or p
roperty falsification by a public officer or employee committed with abuse of hi
s official position.
nishable in a manner in which it was not punishable when it was not committed. A
t 366 of RPC provide that crimes are punished under the laws in force at the tim
e of their commission. It is logical for laws to look forward and not backward.
Nullum crimen, nulla poena sine lege -- There is no crime when there is no law p
unishing the same. This is true to civil law countries, but not to common law co
untries. US vs. Macasaet Facts: The defendant was proven guilty of selling nativ
e wine at retail without the license required by law. He was sentenced to pay a
fine and was also sentenced to imprisonment in case of insolvency with respect t
o the fine imposed. The judge imposed a sentence with heavier penalty in accorda
nce with a new law, which took effect two months after the trial. Issue: W/N Act
. No. 1732 which imposed both the fine and the imprisonment should be applied on
this case. Decision: No. Inasmuch as Act No. 1732 did not go into force until a
fter the commission of the offense, subsidiary imprisonment can not be lawfully
imposed. Penal statutes cannot be made retroactive with respect to a crime, or o
ther offense, unless they are favorable to the person accused. Ex post facto law
s Rule: No ex post facto laws shall be enacted. An ex post facto law is one whic
h: (1) makes criminal in act done before the passage of the law and which was in
nocent when done, and punishes such in act. (2) aggravates a crime, or makes it
greater than it was, when committed;

When the offender should commit any of the crimes against the national security
and law of nations.
Note: This include, treason, conspiracy and proposal to commit treason, espionag
e, inciting was and giving motives for reprisals, violation of neutrality, corre
spondence with hostile country, flight to enemys country, piracy and mutiny on th
e high seas. People vs. LOL-LO and SARAW Facts: The defendants were charged of t
he crime of piracy for pirating two Dutch boats as well as raping two of the wom
en. Defendants contend that the provisions of the penal code dealing with piracy
are no longer in force. Issue: W/N the provisions of the penal code dealing wit
h the crime of piracy are still in force.
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(3) changes the punishment and inflicts a greater punishment than the law annexe
d to the crime when committed; (4) alters the legal rules of evidence, and autho
rizes conviction upon less or different testimony than the law required at the t
ime of the commission of the offense; (5) assuming to regulate civil rights and
remedies only, in effect imposes penalty or deprivation of a right for something
which when done was lawful; and (6) deprives a person accused of a crime of som
e lawful protection to which he has become entitled, such as the protection of a
former conviction or acquittal, or a proclamation of amnesty. In re: Kay Villeg
as Kami, Inc. Facts: The petitioners are assailing the constitutionality of Sec.
8 (a) and 18 of RA No. 6132 saying that it is an ex post facto law. The said la
w prohibits the petitioners nominee to be nominated in the constitutional convent
ion since he represents a part. Issue: W/N the said law is an ex post facto law
and thus unconstitutional. Decision: No. The prohibition against ex post facto l
aws applies only to criminal or penal matters, not to laws, which concern civil
matters. Although section 18 penalizes a violation of any of the provision of RA
1632, the penalty is imposed only for acts committed after the approval of the
law and not those perpetuated prior thereto. Bill of Attainder as Ex Post Facto
Law People vs. Ferrer Facts: The defendants assail the constitutionality of RA N
o. 1700 or the Anti Subversion Act on the ground that is a bill of attainder. Is
sue: W/N the law is unconstitutional Decision: A bill of attainder is a legislat
ive act, which inflicts punishment without trial. Its essence is the substitutio
n of a legislative for a judicial determination of guilt. Section 4 of the AntiSubversion Act expressly states that the prohibition therein applies only to act
s committed "After the approval of this Act." Only those who "knowingly, willful
ly and by overt acts affiliate themselves with, become or remain members of the
Communist Party of the Philippines and/or its successors or of any subversive as
sociation" after June 20, 1957, are punished. Exceptions to the prospective appl
ication of criminal laws (When penal law apply retroactively) 1. When favorable
to the accused
Vena V. Verga
People vs. Macasaet Escalante vs. Santos Facts: Petitioner was convicted for the
crime of estafa and was sentenced to serve for 2 years and 11 months imprisonme
nt to indemnify the offended party. After 3 years, he has not yet been released.
He is petitioning for habeas corpus. Issue: W/N the petition is justified. Deci
sion: Yes. The petitioner, having already served for more than three years is en
titled to be discharged under the provisions of Art. 22 of the penal code. The p
rinciple of the retroactivity of penal laws in so far as it is favorable to the
defendant is sanctioned by the Revised Penal Code. Even if the accused is servin
g final judgment, as long as he is not a habitual delinquent, he can avail of th
e amended, lighter penalty. (a) Degree of Imposable Penalty is reduced
People vs. Subido Facts: CFI of Manila found the accused guilty of libel and is
hereby sentenced to 3 months of arresto mayor with accessory penalties of the la
w, to pay a fine of 500 pesos, to indemnify the offended party, Mayor Arsenio La
cson in the sum of 10,000 pesos with subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolven
cy. Appealed to the Court of Appeals. The CA ordered the accused to pay a fine o
f 500 pesos and indemnity is reduced to 5,000 pesos only. Appellant said that he
could not be required to serve the amount of fine and indemnity in the form of
subsidiary imprisonment because said judgment did not expressly provide that. Th
is was denied. Sheriff then attached whatever rights, interest of accused in the
twostorey building, but the same was registered in the name of Agapito Subido,
and so he filed a third party claim enjoining the sheriff to proceed with the sa
le. Lower court issued a writ of injunction. Lower court states that he should s
uffer subsidiary imprisonment, even if the same was not stated in the decision o
f CA. Issue: W/N Subido be required to suffer subsidiary imprisonment, in case o
f insolvency to pay his civil liability. Decision: No. Accused-appellant is favo
red by the retroactive force of Art. 39 of the RPC, as amended by R.A. 5465 whic

h exempts an accused person from subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency t

o pay his civil liability. Considering that Art. 39, as amended is favorable to
the accused, the same should be made applicable to him. It is so provided in Art
. 22 of the RPC. Applying Art. 39 as amended, he cannot also be required to serv
e his civil liability to the offended party in form of subsidiary imprisonment b
ecause this is no longer required by the aforesaid article.
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Note: Removal of subsidiary imprisonment to pay civil liability (b) Prescribing
Grounds for Mitigation or Extinction of Criminal Liability
Vena V. Verga
Facts: The accused was charged with offense of injurias graves under articles of
the RPC. Issue: W/N the new law can apply to the accused. Decision: No. Section
13 of the new act provides as follows: "All laws and parts of laws now in force
, so far as the same may be in conflict herewith, are hereby repealed: Provided,
That nothing herein contained shall operate as a repeal of existing laws in so
far as they are applicable to pending actions or existing causes of action, but
as to such causes of action or pending actions existing laws shall remain in ful
l force and effect." The general rule that penal laws shall be retroactive in so
far as they favor the accused has no application where the later law is express
ly made inapplicable to pending actions or existing causes of action.
Laceste vs. Santos Facts: The petitioner, Clemente Laceste, prays the court to s
et him at liberty through the writ of habeas corpus, pleading that there is no s
ufficient legal ground for continuing his imprisonment any longer. With Nicolas
Lachica, he had been prosecuted, found guilty, and sentenced to commitment for t
he crime of rape. Nicola Lachica married the victim, Magdalena de Ocampo, and wa
s accordingly relieved from the criminal prosecution by virtue of section 2, Act
No. 1773, and article 448 of the Penal Code then in force, which provided that
such a marriage extinguished penal liability, and hence, the penalty. But the pe
titioner herein continued serving his sentence, which was not affected by the ma
rriage of his coaccused and the offended party. Issue: W/N Laceste should be fre
ed. Decision: It is believed that the Revised Penal Code, Act No. 3815, article
344, last paragraph, applies to the case of the herein petitioner, and that he s
hould be discharged from prison. All penal laws have been declared retroactive b
y the Honorable Supreme Court. And the Legislature, under section 366 of the New
Penal Code, has clearly intended to give retroactive effect to article 22, beca
use section 366 provides: "Without prejudice to the provisions contained in arti
cle 22 of this Code, felonies and misdemeanors, committed prior to the date of e
ffectiveness of this Code, shall be punished in accordance with the Code or Acts
in force at the time of their commission." If it was not the intention of the L
egislature to make the new Code retroactive, it would have used the words "notwi
thstanding" or "in spite of", instead of "without prejudice." The principle of r
etroactivity of penal laws in so far as they favor the defendant, has been sanct
ioned in the Revised Penal Code, as it was in the Code that preceded it. (c) Pro
viding for Prescription of offenses
PRINCIPLE OF LEGALITY: Nullum crimen, nulla poena sine lege -- There is no crime
when there is no law punishing the same. This is true to civil law countries, b
ut not to common law countries; all crimes must be so defined and penalized unde
r the law (art. 21) PERSONAL Penal laws does not allow anyone to assume anothers
criminal liability PRINCIPLE OF CERTAINTY every act made punishable by law must
be so defined as to leave no penumbra of doubt or uncertainty as to its applicab
ility to a given case.
E. F.
IX. Other fundamental Assumptions of Penal Law
A. B.
Free-will or freedom to choose between right and wrong; no liability if feloniou
s act is committed without free will Ignorance of the law excuses no one from co

mpliance therewith Limitations on the power of the lawmaking body to enact penal
legislation No ex post facto law or bill of attainder shall be enacted No perso
n shall be held to answer for criminal offenses without due process of law crimi
nal laws must be of general application and must clearly define the acts and omi
ssions punished as crimes.
People vs. Moran Exceptions to retroactivity of laws (a) Accused is a habitual c
riminal (Art. 22) (b) Accused Disregards Later law and invokes prior statute und
er which he was prosecuted. (c) Later Statute Precludes Application to Existing
Actions or Pending Cases Tavera vs. Valdez
A. B.
XI. Basic Maxims in Criminal Law
Principle of Pro Reo -- Whenever a penal law is to be construed or applied and t
he law admits of two interpretations one lenient to the
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offender and one strict to the offender that interpretation which is lenient or
favorable to the offender will be adopted. People vs. Alzaga Facts: Roy Alzaga w
as found guilty by the RTC for the crime of murder. The accused maintained his i
nnocence saying that tit was the victim who accidentally shot himself while they
were battling for the gun. There were two witnesses with contradicting testimon
ies. There were also testimonies which were inconsistent to the guilt of the acc
used. Issue: W/N the Alzaga should be charged beyond reasonable doubt. Decision:
No. Where inculpatory facts are susceptible of two interpretations, one consist
ent and another inconsistent with the guilt of the accused, the accused should b
e acquitted since evidence failed to fulfill the test of moral certainty to supp
ort a conviction. The court agrees with the accused that where facts are suscept
ible of two interpretations, then we have to sustain the interpretation, which l
eads to acquittal. Proof of guilt must convince beyond reasonable doubt. People
vs. Ng Facts: The defendant was charged with the crime of forcible abduction wit
h rape. During arraignment, accused pleaded not guilty. RTC convicted the defend
ant but he appealed contending that evidences were not enough to warrant a convi
ction. Issue: W/N the evidences were enough to warrant a charge of guilty beyond
reasonable doubt. Decision: No. Charge of rape based upon the sole testimony of
the one who complains of rape should be regarded with utmost caution and that t
he person charged with the offense should not be convicted unless the complainan
t s testimony is impeccable and rings true throughout. The case at bar falls sho
rt to the quantum of evidence required to sustain a conviction of rape thereby c
reating reasonable doubt as to appellant s guilt. The rule is that reasonable do
ubt in criminal cases must be resolved in favor of the accused. The requirement
of proof beyond reasonable doubt calls for moral certainty of guilt -- a certain
ty that convinces and satisfies the reason and the conscience of those who are t
o act upon it.
Vena V. Verga
XII.Construction of penal laws
Liberal Construction In Favor of the Offender (a) Reason Note: Ambiguity occurs
when an act falls under more than one law or when the law is susceptible to more
than one interpretation People vs. Purisima Facts: Twenty six petitions for rev
iew were filed by the People of the Philippines involving the information filed
charging the respective accused with violation of PD No. 9. The courts of first
instances issued an order quashing the in formations filed alleging that the fac
ts failed to state one essential element of the crime Issue: W/N the information
s filed by the people were sufficient in form and substance to constitute an off
ence of illegal possession of deadly weapon penalized under PD No. 9. Decision: No
. The informations merely contained the first element that is, carrying outside
ones residence of any bladed, blunt or pointed weapon but it failed to include th
e second element, which is the intention or motivation behind it. This kind of c
onstruction is very much open to police extortion thus must be avoided. Penal st
atues must be construed strictly against the state and liberally in favor of the
accused. The reason for this is the tenderness of the law of the rights of indiv
iduals; the object is to establish a certain rule by conformity to which mankind
would be safe, and the discretion of the court limited. The purpose is not to e
nable the guilty person to escape punishment through technicality but to provide
precise definition of forbidden acts. Penal laws should be construed strictly.
No person should be brought within their terms who is not clearly within them no
r should any act be pronounced criminal which is not made clearly so be a statut
See: Principle of Pro-reo

Actus non facit reum, nisi mens sit rea
mind is not criminal. This is true to a
felony resulting from culpa. This maxim
applied to culpable felonies, or those

-- The act cannot be criminal where the

felony characterized by dolo, but not a
is not an absolute one because it is not
that result from negligence.

Penal laws are strictly construed against the Government and liberally in favor
of the accused (US vs. Abad Santos). This rule may be invoked only where the law
is ambiguous and there is doubt as to its interpretation. Where the law is clea
r and unambiguous, there is no room for the application of this rule (People vs.
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(a) When the law is clear, there is no room for interpretation. The task of the
court is to apply the law. Will not also apply when strict construction will def
eat the intent, policy and purpose. If the law is ambiguous, the task of the cou
rt of to know the meaning and intention of the law.
Vena V. Verga
the statute itself explicitly mentions the unauthorized "recording" of private c
ommunications with the use of tape-recorders as among the acts punishable. US vs.
Toribio Facts: Defendant was charged for violation of Art. 30 and 33 of Act 114
7, which regulates the registration, branding and slaughtering of large cattle w
ithout a license. There are two constructions of these prohibitions: (c) The phr
ase at the municipal slaughter house may be taken as limiting and restricting both
the word slaughtered and killed for food in section 30 and killing for food in sectio
n 33. The phrase at the municipal slaughterhouse may bet taken as limiting and re
stricting the words killed for food
Ramirez vs. Court of Appeals Facts: Petitioner filed a case against private resp
ondent, Garcia for allegedly vexing and humiliating her. In support of her alleg
ations, she presented a transcript of her conversation with the respondent. As a
result of her actions, respondent filed a case against her for violation of Rep
ublic Act 4200, entitled An Act to prohibit and penalize wire-tapping and other
related violations of private communication, and other purposes. Petitioner also
alleged that private conversation, which she and the respondent had, is not the
same with private communication. Issue: W/N there is ambiguity in the meaning o
f private conversation and private communication. Decision: There is no ambiguit
y. Legislative intent is determined principally from the language of a statute.
Where the language of a statute is clear and unambiguous, the law is applied acc
ording to its express terms, and interpretation would be resorted to only where
a literal interpretation would be either impossible or absurd or would lead to a
n injustice. The afore stated provision clearly and unequivocally makes it illeg
al for any person, not authorized by all the parties to any private communicatio
n to secretly record such communication by means of any gadget. Gaanan vs. Inter
mediate Appellate Court (in contrast with Ramirez vs. CA) Facts: This case invol
ves an act of overhearing a conversation by use of an extension line. Issue: W/N
there is ambiguity in the phrase "device(s) or arrangement(s)" Decision: The us
e of a telephone extension for the purpose of overhearing a private conversation
without authorization did not violate R.A. 4200 because a telephone extension d
evice was neither among those devices enumerated in Section 1 of the law nor was
it similar to those "device(s) or arrangement(s)" enumerated therein. The phras
e is ambiguous and the principle that "penal statutes must be construed strictly
in favor of the accused." Must be followed. The case of Ramirez turns on a diff
erent note, because the applicable facts and circumstances pointing to a violati
on of R.A. 4200 suffer from no ambiguity, and
Appellant contends that since in his town, there are no slaughterhouses, the pro
hibitions of Act 1147 does not apply. Issue: W/N the defendant incurred liabilit
y. Decision: Yes. The act primarily seeks to protect large cattle from theft; th
us, the latter construction should be adopted. When the language if a statute is
susceptible of more than one construction, that construction should be adopted
which will most tend to give effect to the manifest intent of the legislature. S
ec. 30 and 33 of the act prohibit and penalize the slaughtering or causing to be
slaughtered for human consumption of large cattle at any place without the perm
it provided for in sec. 30. US vs. Chico Facts: Defendant was charged for violat
ing sec. 1 of Act. No. 1696 of the Philippine commission which prohibits the dis
play of any flag, banner or device used during the insurrections in the Philippi

nes. He contends that he is ignorant of the law and that the prohibition is only
against the actual use of identical banners and devices which were used during
the Philippine insurrection. Issue: W/N the accused should be held liable for th
e violation. Decision: Yes. The contention is nonsense. In cases like this, the
court shall resort to the principle that the spirit of the law controls the lett
er. The intention of the legislature and object aimed at are to control the lite
ral interpretation of a particular language in a statute. Language capable of mo
re than one meaning is to be taken in the sense, which will harmonize the intent
ion and object. When there is ambiguity, and there is doubt as to the subject ma
tter to which the law is to be applied, the preamble may be used.
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Vena V. Verga
had no jurisdiction over the person of the defendant or the subject matter of th
e action, because the complaint had not been filed by the offended party, but by
the chief of police. The victim then filed the same complaint. This time, Manab
a filed a motion to dismiss on the ground of jeopardy for the same offense. Issu
e: W/N the plea for double jeopardy should be granted. Decision: The third parag
raph of article 344 of the Revised Penal Code provides that: The offenses of sed
uction, abduction, rape or acts of lasciviousness, shall not be prosecuted excep
t upon a complaint filed by the offended party.. It will be observed that the Span
ish equivalent of the word "filed" is not found in the Spanish text, which is co
ntrolling, as it was the Spanish text of the Revised Penal Code that was approve
d by the Legislature. Since the first complaint filed was not the complaint of t
he offended party, it was not a valid complaint in accordance with the law. The
judgment of the court was therefore void for lack of jurisdiction over the subje
ct matter, and the defendant was never in jeopardy. People vs. Mesias Facts: The
defendant was accused of robbing seven sacks of rice and before arraignment, he
contended that the term rice does not only mean hulled rice but also includes p
alay. If the word rice includes the grain in its original state without the hull
being taken away, then "rice is included under the term semilla alimenticia
or cereal seed. Therefore, the thing stolen was really hulled rice (arroz) but t
here is nothing in the complaint which shows that fact. The complaint merely all
eges that the object stolen was seven sacks of rice. It may be hulled rice (arro
z) or it may be rice seeds (palay). Under the circumstances, the defendant submi
ts that the doubt should always be resolved in favor of the accused. Issue: W/N
the phrase "hulled rice" was within the meaning of "semilla alimenticia" as used
in the Spanish text. Decision: The English word "cereal", into which was transl
ated the phrase "semilla alimenticia", used in the Spanish text of article 303 o
f the Revised Penal Code, is incorrect. Inasmuch as hulled rice (arroz) cannot b
e considered as seedling (semilla alimenticia), the offense with which the appel
lee is charged in the information does not fall under article 303 of the Revised
Penal Code but under the second to the last paragraph of article 302 where the
offense therein defined is penalized with arresto mayor in its maximum degree to
prision correccional. In cases of doubt in the interpretation of the Revised Pe
nal Code, the Spanish text should prevail. Note: There are already amendments th
at use English terms. For these amendments, there is no need to go back to the S
panish text. But for those, which remained in their original form, the Spanish t
ext is controlling.
Cultural environment by which the legislature is operating can also be a source
of the meaning as well as the intention of the law.
Legamia vs. Intermediate Appellate Court Facts: Petitioner has been living with
a married man for 20 years and the relationship ended with the death of the man.
After the death of husband Emilio, Corazon filed for support for their son. Thi
s came to the knowledge of the real spouse thus she filed a complaint against Co
razon for using the name Reyes although she was not married to Emilio. Issue: W/
N Corazon violated the Anti-Alias Law. Decision: It is in the light of our cultu
ral environment that the law must be construed. Our society is a tolerant one an
d surely, the lawmakers could not have meant to criminalize what Corazon had don
e especially because some of them probably had their own Corazons.
In the construction or interpretation of the provisions of the RPC, the Spanish
text is controlling.

Baking vs. Director of prisons Facts: Petitioner has been in detention for 18 ye
ars of preventive imprisonment for the crime of rebellion. He is claiming for al
lowance for good conduct as provided for by Art 97 of the RPC. Issue: W/N Art 97
of the RP is applicable to detention prisoners or prisoners who are just servin
g preventive imprisonment. Decision: The term "any prisoner" in the English text
of Art. 97 regarding good conduct allowance is, in the Spanish text, "el penado
," who is a convict or a person already sentenced by final judgment. There is no
doubt that Article 97 does not embrace detention prisoners within its reach. Be
cause it speaks of the buena conducta observada por el penado - not one under "p
rison preventiva." The allowance for good conduct "for each month of good behavi
or" then unquestionably refers to good behavior of a prisoner while he is servin
g his term as a convict and not otherwise. Inasmuch as the Revised Penal Code wa
s originally approved and enacted in Spanish, the Spanish text governs. People v
s. Manaba Facts: Manaba was charged with rape. The first complaint was made by t
he chief of police of Dumagete. The accused was tried and convicted, but the jud
gment was set aside and the case dismissed on the ground that the court
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Vena V. Verga
Decision: The repeal is absolute. Where the repeal is absolute and not a reenact
ment or repeal by implication, the offense ceases to be criminal. The defendant
must be acquitted. David vs. Dancel Facts: Petitioner is assailing the promotion
of Angel Dancel to Chief of Tax Registration a position to which he claims to b
e lawfully entitled. He further contends that EO No. 503, which prescribes a min
imum efficiency of 85% for promotion, was superceded by the Compilation of Civil
Service Laws and Rules under which his rating of 84% is considered a high degre
e of efficiency. Issue: W/N EO 503 was repealed by Compilation of Civil Service
Laws and Rules, an Administrative Compilation. Decision. No. The Compilation of
Civil Service Laws and Rules was prepared merely by the Bureau of Civil Service
and could not possibly have repealed Executive Order No. 503, series of 1934 sin
ce under Article 7 of the Civil Code, "laws are repealed only by subsequent ones
and their violation or nonobservance shall not be excused by disuse, or custom
or practice to the contrary." People vs. Almuete Facts: The defendant supposedly
violated Sec 39 of he Agricultural Tenancy Law which is premised on the existen
ce of the rice share tenancy system. The act of pre-reaping and pre-treshing wit
hout notice to the landlord, which was an offense under the Agricultural Tenancy
, has ceased to be an offense under the subsequent law, the Code of Agrarian Ref
orms. To prosecute it as an offense when the Code of Agrarian Reforms is already
in force would be repugnant to the policy and spirit of that Code and would sub
vert the manifest legislative intent not to punish anymore pre-reaping sod pre-t
hreshing without notice to the landholder. Issue: W/N Almuete violated a law. De
cision: The Agricultural Land Reform Code superseded the Agricultural Tenancy La
w (except as qualified in sections 4 and 35 of the Code). The Code instituted th
e leasehold system and abolished share tenancy subject to certain conditions ind
icated in section 4 thereof. It is significant that section 39 is not reproduced
in the Agricultural Land Reform Code whose section 172 repeals "all laws or par
t of any law inconsistent with" its provisions. The prohibition against pre-thre
shing has no more raison d etre because the lessee is obligated to pay a fixed r
ental as prescribed in section 34 of the Agricultural Land Reform Code, or the C
ode of Agrarian Reforms, as redesignated in Republic Act No. 6389 which took eff
ect on September 10, 1971. Thus, the legal maxim cessante ratione legis, cessat
ipsa lex (the reason for the law ceasing, the law itself also ceases), applies t
o the case at bar.
People vs. Balubar Facts: Balubar was found guilty of the crime of physical inju
ries by the lower court. The victim lost four of his front teeth. The conflict a
rose from the ambiguous term any other members which is necessary for the charge.
The English text contained loss on any other part of his body while the Spanish te
xt provided the loss of any other member resulting in disfigurement. Later cases see
m to suggest that loss of teeth does not constitute disfigurement because it can
easily be replaced. Issue: W/N the accused is still liable for his actions. Dec
ision: In this case, Spanish text is given more weight. "Cualquier otro miembro"
is more accurately translated "any other member", meaning any other member than
an eye, a hand, a foot, an arm, or a leg resulting to "Deforme" or "disfigured"
. Such is the case at bar. The accused is not relieved of liability from the req
uisite deforme even if the victim can lessen the deformity through artificial mean
s. One who unlawfully wounds another is responsible for the consequences of his
act. XIII.Repeals
Different effects of repeal of penal law If repeal makes the penalty lighter in
the new law, the new law shall be applied, except when the offender is a habitua
l delinquent or when the new law is made not applicable to pending action or exi
sting causes of action. If the new law imposes a heavier penalty, the law in for

ce at the time of the commission of the offense shall be applied If the new law
totally repeals the existing law so that the act, which was penalized under the
old law, is no longer punishable, the crime is obliterated.
2) 3)
People vs. Tamayo Facts: The accused was prosecuted for and convicted of a viola
tion of an ordinance. While the case was pending appeal, the ordinance was repea
led by eliminating the section under which the accused was being prosecuted. Iss
ue: W/N the absolute repeal obliterated the criminal liability.
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Vena V. Verga
Decision: Provisions of the Penal Code, which define and punish grave insults, w
hen those crimes are expressed publicly in writing, are repealed by Act No. 277the Libel Law. A penal law, like any other statute, may be repealed either expre
ssly or by necessary implication; and such statute or law is repealed by implica
tion if the later statute is so repugnant to the earlier one that the two cannot
stand together or if the whole subject of the earlier statute is covered by the
latter one having the same object, and which was clearly intended to prescribe
the only rule applicable to the subject. If a criminal law deals with the same s
ubject as a prior law and is inconsistent with and repugnant to the prior law, t
he former is thereby repealed. Where the latter or revising statute clearly cove
rs the whole subject matter of antecedent acts, and it plainly appears to have b
een the purpose of the Legislature to give expression in it to the whole law on
the subject, the latter is held to be repealed by necessary implication. Defenda
nt was acquitted. People vs. Perfecto Facts: Gregorio Perfecto, editor of La Nac
ion was found guilty of violating Art. 257 of the Penal Code for attacking the v
irtue of the members of the Senate. Art 256 of the Penal Code provides that any
person who by writing, shall defame, abuse or insult any minister of the Crown o
r other person shall be punished. Defendant questions whether this article is st
ill in force or whether the Libel law already repealed it. Issue: W/N Art 256 is
still in force. Decision: The Philippine Libel Law, Act No. 277, has had the ef
fect of repealing so much of article 256 of the Penal Code as related to written
defamation, abuse, or insult. Article 256 of the Spanish Penal Code is not now
in force because abrogated by the change from Spanish to American sovereignty ov
er the Philippines and because inconsistent with democratic principles of govern
ment. Where the later statute clearly covers the old subject-matter of anteceden
t acts, and it plainly appears to have been the purpose of the Legislature to gi
ve expression in it to the whole law on the subject, previous laws are held to b
e repealed by necessary implication. c. Effects (1) Pending Criminal Action is n
ot dismissed
Consequences if repeal of penal law is partial or relative If a case is pending
in court involving the violation of the repealed law, and the repealing law is m
ore favorable to the accused, it shall be the one applied to him. So whether he
is a habitual delinquent or not, if the case is still pending in court, the repe
aling law will be the one to apply unless there is a saving clause in the repeal
ing law that it shall not apply to pending causes of action. If a case is alread
y decided and the accused is already serving sentence by final judgment, even if
the repealing law is partial or relative, the crime still remains to be a crime
. Those who are not habitual delinquents will benefit on the effect of that repe
al, so that if the repeal is more lenient to them, it will be the repealing law
that will henceforth apply to them. Express or implied repeal Express or implied
repeal refers to the manner the repeal is done. 1. An implied repeal will take
place when there is a law on a particular subject matter and a subsequent law is
passed also on the same subject matter but is inconsistent with the first law,
such that the two laws cannot stand together, one of the two laws must give way.
It is the earlier that will give way to the later law because the later law exp
resses the recent legislative sentiment. (a) (b) Repeal by implication is not fa
vored There is implied repeal if there are irreconcilable inconsistencies.
People vs. Castro Facts: The defendant was charged with injuries graves for send

ing letter to a medical health officer which contained insults and accusations.
The appellant contends (a) that the evidence adduced during the trial did not sh
ow that he was guilty of the crime of injurias graves as defined under the Penal
Code, and (b) that even though the evidence did show that he had violated the p
rovisions of the Penal Code providing a punishment for injurias graves, he could
not be punished, for the reason that said provisions of the Penal Code had been
repealed by the Libel Law (Act No. 277). Issue: W/N the penal code provisions w
ere already repealed by the Libel Law.
Buscayno vs. Military Commissions No. 1, 2, 6 and 25 Facts: The petitioners were
accused of rebellion for having allegedly participated in public uprising to ov
erthrow the government. They were accused of subversion under RA 1700 (Anti-Subv
ersion Law). Sometime of 1976, PD No. 885 which repealed RA 1700 took effect. On
e of the petitioners contends that her criminal liability was extinguished by th
e repeal.
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
Issue: W/N in repealing RA 1700, PD No. 885 extinguished the criminal liabilitie
s of persons charged with violation of the older law. Decision: No. That decree,
which is the Revised Anti-Subversion Law, in repealing or superseding Republic
Act No. 1700, expressly provides in its Section 7 that "acts committed in violat
ion" of the former law before the effectivity of the said decree "shall be prose
cuted and punished in accordance with the provisions of the former Art" and that
nothing in the said decree "shall prevent prosecution of cases pending for viol
ation of" Republic Act No. 1700. That saving or transitory clause is reenacted i
n section 14(i) of the National Security Code. It is similar to article 366 of t
he Revised Penal Code which provides that felonies and misdemeanors committed pr
ior to the effectivity of the Revised Penal Code shall be punished in accordance
with the old Penal Code and the laws in force at the time of their commission.
The fact that Presidential Decree No. 885 does not mention the CPP does not mean
that the party is no longer regarded as a subversive organization. The purpose
of the party is the decisive factor in determining whether it is a subversive or
ganization. (2) But penalty under second law will be applied if favorable to acc
used. Express repeal takes place when a subsequent law contains a provision that
such law repeals an earlier enactment.
Vena V. Verga
(1) If a penal law is impliedly repealed, the subsequent repeal of the repealing
law will revive the original law. So the act or omission which was punished as
a crime under the original law will be revived and the same shall again be crime
s although during the implied repeal they may not be punishable. (2) If the repe
al is express, the repeal of the repealing law will not revive the first law, so
the act or omission will no longer be penalized. (3) Effects of nullity of repe
aling laws Cruz vs. Youngberg Facts: Petitioner attacked the constitutionality o
f Act No. 3155 which prohibits the importation of cattle from foreign countries
to the Philippines. Respondent demurred that even id Act No. 3155 was declared u
nconstitutional, the petitioner would still be prohibited from importing because
Act. No. 3052 which was repealed by Act. No 3155 will be revived. Issue: W/N Ac
t. No 3155 is constitutional. Decision: Yes. An unconstitutional statute can hav
e no effect to repeal former laws or parts of laws by implication, since being v
oid; it is not inconsistent with such former law. It is entirely unnecessary to
pass upon the validity of the statute attacked because even if it were declared
unconstitutional, the petitioner would not be entitled to relief because of Act.
No. 3052. XIV.Distinction between crimes punished under the Revised Penal Code
and crimes punished under special laws 1. As to moral trait of the offender In c
rimes punished under the Revised Penal Code, the moral trait of the offender is
considered. This is why liability would only arise when there is dolo or culpa i
n the commission of the punishable act. In crimes punished under special laws, t
he moral trait of the offender is not considered; it is enough that the prohibit
ed act was voluntarily done. 2. As to use of good faith as defense In crimes pun
ished under the Revised Penal Code, good faith or lack of criminal intent is a v
alid defense; unless the crime is the result of culpa In crimes punished under s
pecial laws, good faith is not a defense
People vs. Soliman Facts: Defendant was accused of perjury under Art 1697. While
he was serving his sentence, Act. No. 1697 was expressly repealed by a Section
in the administrative code. Accused contends that his criminal liability should
be extinguished because of the repeal. Issue: W/N the criminal liability was ext
inguished because of the repeal. Decision: Section 12 of the administrative code
provides that a law, which expressly repealed a prior law, is itself repealed;
the first law repealed shall not be revived unless expressly provided. Therefore
, the old rule continues in force where a law, which repeals a prior law, is not
expressly, but by implication, is itself repealed. Act no. 1697 impliedly repea
ls Art. 319 of the penal code, which also defines and penalizes perjury. Act. No

. 2657 expressly repealed Act no. 1697, thus, the provisions of the penal code i
s revived.
Consequences if repeal of penal law is express or implied
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
Vena V. Verga
the most advantageous to the municipality. The losing bidder challenged the vali
dity of the contract, but the trial court sustained its validity. The case goes
to the Sandiganbayan and the mayor gets convicted for violation of Republic Act
No. 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act). He appeals alleging his defense
s raised in the Sandiganbayan that he did not profit from the transaction, that
the contract was advantageous to the municipality, and that he did not act with
intent to gain. Rule. Judgment affirmed. The contention of the mayor that he did
not profit anything from the transaction, that the contract was advantageous to
the municipality, and that he did not act with intent to gain, is not a defense
. The crime involved is malum prohibitum. In the case of People v. Sunico, an el
ection registrar was prosecuted for having failed to include in the voters regist
er the name of a certain voter. There is a provision in the election law which p
roscribes any person from preventing or disenfranchising a voter from casting hi
s vote. In trial, the election registrar raised as good faith as a defense. The
trial court convicted him saying that good faith is not a defense in violation o
f special laws. On appeal, it was held by he Supreme Court that disenfranchising
a voter from casting his vote is not wrong because there is a provision of law
declaring it as a crime, but because with or without a law, that act is wrong. I
n other words, it is malum in se. Consequently, good faith is a defense. Since t
he prosecution failed to prove that the accused acted with malice, he was acquit
ted. Test to determine if violation of special law is malum prohibitum or malum
in se Analyze the violation: Is it wrong because there is a law prohibiting it o
r punishing it as such? If you remove the law, will the act still be wrong? If t
he wording of the law punishing the crime uses the word willfully, then malice mus
t be proven. Where malice is a factor, good faith is a defense.
As to degree of accomplishment of the crime In crimes punished under the Revised
Penal Code, the degree of accomplishment of the crime is taken into account in
punishing the offender; thus, there are attempted, frustrated, and consummated s
tages in the commission of the crime. In crimes punished under special laws, the
act gives rise to a crime only when it is consummated; there are no attempted o
r frustrated stages, unless the special law expressly penalize the mere attempt
or frustration of the crime.
As to mitigating and aggravating circumstances In crimes punished under the Revi
sed Penal Code, mitigating and aggravating circumstances are taken into account
in imposing the penalty since the moral trait of the offender is considered. In
crimes punished under special laws, mitigating and aggravating circumstances are
not taken into account in imposing the penalty.
As to degree of participation In crimes punished under the Revised Penal Code, w
hen there is more than one offender, the degree of participation of each in the
commission of the crime is taken into account in imposing the penalty; thus, off
enders are classified as principal, accomplice and accessory. In crimes punished
under special laws, the degree of participation of the offenders is not conside
red. All who perpetrated the prohibited act are penalized to the same extent. Th
ere is no principal or accomplice or accessory to consider.
Questions & Answers 1. Three hijackers accosted the pilot of an airplane. They c
ompelled the pilot to change destination, but before the same could be accomplis
hed, the military was alerted. What was the crime committed? Grave coercion. The

re is no such thing as attempted hijacking. Under special laws, the penalty is n

ot imposed unless the act is consummated. Crimes committed against the provision
s of a special law are penalized only when the pernicious effects, which such la
w seeks to prevent, arise. 2. A mayor awarded a concession to his daughter. She
was also the highest bidder. The award was even endorsed by the municipal counci
l as
In violation of special law, the act constituting the crime is a prohibited act.
Therefore culpa is not a basis of liability, unless the special law punishes an
omission. When given a problem, take note if the crime is a violation of the Re
vised Penal Code or a special law. XV. Article 2
Source of RPC (1) Rafael del Pans Correctional Code of 1916 (2) Code of Maruecos
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
(3) Original Draft of German Penal Code of 1913 Where offense punishable under R
PC is also punished under military law Piracy is triable anywhere (see Lo-Lol an
d Saraw) (1)
Vena V. Verga
When the crime is committed in a war vessel of a foreign country, because war ve
ssels are part of the sovereignty of the country to whose naval force they belon
g; When the foreign country in whose territorial waters the crime was committed
adopts the French Rule, which applies only to merchant vessels, except when the
crime committed affects the national security or public order of such foreign co
B. C.
n Article 2 embraces two scopes of applications: (1) (2) Intraterritorial refers
to the application of the Revised Penal Code within the Philippine territory; E
xtraterritorial refers to the application of the Revised Penal Code outside the
Philippine territory.
The French Rule The French Rule provides that the nationality of the vessel foll
ows the flag which the vessel flies, unless the crime committed endangers the na
tional security of a foreign country where the vessel is within jurisdiction in
which case such foreign country will never lose jurisdiction over such vessel. T
he American or Anglo-Saxon Rule This rule strictly enforces the territoriality o
f criminal law. The law of the foreign country where a foreign vessel is within
its jurisdiction is strictly applied, except if the crime affects only the inter
nal management of the vessel in which case it is subject to the penal law of the
country where it is registered. Both the rules apply only to a foreign merchant
vessel if a crime was committed aboard that vessel while it was in the territor
ial waters of another country. If that vessel is in the high seas or open seas,
there is no occasion to apply the two rules. If it is not within the jurisdictio
n of any country, these rules will not apply.
Intraterritorial application In the intraterritorial application of the Revised
Penal Code, Article 2 makes it clear that it does not refer only to Philippine a
rchipelago but it also includes the atmosphere, interior waters and maritime zon
e. So whenever you use the word territory, do not limit this to land area only.
As far as jurisdiction or application of the Revised Penal Code over crimes comm
itted on maritime zones or interior waters, the Archipelagic Rule shall be obser
ved. So the three-mile limit on our shoreline has been modified by the rule. Any
crime committed in interior waters comprising the Philippine archipelago shall
be subject to our laws although committed on board a foreign merchant vessel. A
vessel is considered a Philippine ship only when it is registered in accordance
with Philippine laws. Under international law, as long as such vessel is not wit
hin the territorial waters of a foreign country, Philippine laws shall govern. E
xtraterritorial application Extraterritorial application of the Revised Penal Co
de on crime committed on board Philippine ship or airship refers only to a situa
tion where the Philippine ship or airship is not within the territorial waters o
r atmosphere of a foreign country. Otherwise, it is the foreign countrys criminal
law that will apply. However, there are two situations where the foreign countr
y may not apply its criminal law even if a crime was committed on board a vessel
within its territorial waters and these are:
Question & Answer A vessel is not registered in the Philippines. A crime is comm
itted outside Philippine territorial waters. Then the vessel entered our territo
ry. Will the Revised Penal Code apply? Yes. Under the old Rules of Criminal Proc

edure, for our courts to take cognizance of any crime committed on board a vesse
l during its voyage, the vessel must be registered in the Philippines in accorda
nce with Philippine laws. Under the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, however
, the requirement that the vessel must be licensed and registered in accordance
with Philippine laws has been deleted from Section 25, paragraph c of Rule 110 o
f the Rules of Court. The intention is to do away with that requirement so that
as long as the vessel is not registered under the laws of any country, our court
s can take cognizance of the crime committed in such vessel.
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
Question & Answer
Vena V. Verga
More than this, the revised provision added the phrase in accordance with general
ly accepted principles of International Law. So the intention is clear to adopt g
enerally accepted principles of international law in the matter of exercising ju
risdiction over crimes committed in a vessel while in the course of its voyage.
Under international law rule, a vessel which is not registered in accordance wit
h the laws of any country is considered a pirate vessel and piracy is a crime ag
ainst humanity in general, such that wherever the pirates may go, they can be pr
osecuted. Prior to the revision, the crime would not have been prosecutable in o
ur court. With the revision, registration is not anymore a requirement and repla
ced with generally accepted principles of international law. Piracy is considere
d a crime against the law of nations. In your answer, reference should be made t
o the provision of paragraph c of Section15 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Pro
cedure. The crime may be regarded as an act of piracy as long as it is done with
intent to gain. When public officers or employees commit an offense in the exerci
se of their functions The most common subject of bar problems in Article 2 is pa
ragraph 4: While being public officers or employees, [they] should commit an offe
nse in the exercise of their functions: As a general rule, the Revised Penal Code
governs only when the crime committed pertains to the exercise of the public of
ficials functions, those having to do with the discharge of their duties in a for
eign country. The functions contemplated are those, which are, under the law, to
be performed by the public officer in the Foreign Service of the Philippine gov
ernment in a foreign country. Exception: The Revised Penal Code governs if the c
rime was committed within the Philippine Embassy or within the embassy grounds i
n a foreign country. This is because embassy grounds are considered an extension
of sovereignty. Illustration: A Philippine consulate official who is validly ma
rried here in the Philippines and who marries again in a foreign country cannot
be prosecuted here for bigamy because this is a crime not connected with his off
icial duties. However, if the second marriage was celebrated within the Philippi
ne embassy, he may be prosecuted here, since it is as if he contracted the marri
age here in the Philippines.
A consul was to take a deposition in a hotel in Singapore. After the deposition,
the deponent approached the consuls daughter and requested that certain parts of
the deposition be changed in consideration for $10,000.00. The daughter persuad
ed the consul and the latter agreed. Will the crime be subject to the Revised Pe
nal Code? If so, what crime or crimes have been committed? Yes. Falsification. N
ormally, the taking of the deposition is not the function of the consul, his fun
ction being the promotion of trade and commerce with another country. Under the
Rules of Court, however, a consul can take depositions or letters rogatory. Ther
e is, therefore, a definite provision of the law making it the consuls function t
o take depositions. When he agreed to the falsification of the deposition, he wa
s doing so as a public officer in the service of the Philippine government. Para
graph 5 of Article 2, use the phrase as defined in Title One of Book Two of this
Code. This is a very important part of the exception, because Title I of Book 2 (
crimes against national security) does not include rebellion. So if acts of rebe
llion were perpetrated by Filipinos who were in a foreign country, you cannot gi
ve territorial application to the Revised Penal Code, because Title I of Book 2
does not include rebellion. Illustration: When a Filipino who is already married
in the Philippines, contracts another marriage abroad, the crime committed is b
igamy. But the Filipino can not be prosecuted when he comes back to the Philippi
nes, because the bigamy was committed in a foreign country and the crime is not
covered by paragraph 5 of Article 2. However, if the Filipino, after the second
marriage, returns to the Philippines and cohabits here with his second wife, he
commits the crime of concubinage for which he can be prosecuted. The Revised Pen
al Code shall not apply to any other crime committed in a foreign country which

does not come under any of the exceptions and which is not a crime against natio
nal security.
XVI.Article 3: Felonies HOW A FELONY MAY ARISE
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
Vena V. Verga
Decision: No. Mere passive presence at the scene of anothers crime, mere silence
and failure to give alarm, without evidence of agreement or conspiracy is not pu
nishable. Romana was acquitted.
Punishable by the Revised Penal Code The term felony is limited only to violatio
ns of the Revised Penal Code. When the crime is punishable under a special law y
ou do not refer to this as a felony. So whenever you encounter the term felony,
it is to be understood as referring to crimes under the Revised Penal Code . Thi
s is important because there are certain provisions in the Revised Penal Code wh
ere the term felony is used, which means that the provision is not extended to cri
mes under special laws. A specific instance is found in Article 160 Quasi-Recidi
vism, which reads: A person who shall commit a felony after having been convicte
d by final judgment, before beginning to serve sentence or while serving the sam
e, shall be punished under the maximum period of the penalty. Note that the word
"felony" is used.
Classification of Felonies Intentional Felonies (a) Act or omission of offender
is malicious; act committed by means of dolo (b) Act is performed with deliberat
e intent. 2. Culpable Felonies performed without malice; act committed by means
of culpa (a) Negligence lack of foresight (b) Imprudence lack of skill 1.
US vs. Divino Facts: Divino was charged for the crime of lesiones graves for bu
rning the feet Alfonsa believing in good faith that applying petroleum on her so
res and ulcers would cure her wounds. Unfortunately, Alfonsa became more injured
and deformed after the treatment. Issue: W/N Divino committed a crime consideri
ng he acted on good faith. Decision: One who, not being regular practitioner, un
dertakes to render medical assistance to another person, is liable for any injur
ies resulting, from such treatment, and the fact that he acted in good faith and
according to the best of his ability does not relieve him from responsibility,
although his ignorance may be considered as a mitigating circumstance. Divino wa
s held liable for culpable felony because the acts he committed were out of igno
rance with the intent to bring about remedy instead of harm. Note: Reckless Negl
igence means voluntary act without malice. WHEN THERE IS NEITHER MALICE OR FAULT
People vs. Catangay Facts: Catangay was found guilty of homicide through reckle
ss negligence. On the night of the crime, Catangay was tasked to negotiate the d
istance. But as he was nearing the quarry, he accidentally stumbled onan embankm
ent and two shots were discharged, one killing his companion. Issue: W/N Catanga
y was guilty of reckless negligence
Definition: Felonies are acts and omissions punishable by the law.
Note: The phrase punishable by law is not only constrained to those acts that are
punishable by the RPC. Crimes can also be punishable by special laws. Elements:
Nullum crimen, nulla poena sine lege. If there is no law that defines an act as
a crime and provides for its penalty, such act is not a crime. Acts may be omiss
ions or commissions; only external acts are punished Omission is synonymous to i
naction, the failure to perform a positive duty which one is bound to do. There
must be a low requiring the performance of such act.

2. 3.
People vs. Silvestre and Atienza Facts: Martin and Romana were both convicted of
the crime of arson by the Court of First Instance. The case of Romana was appea
led because there is no strong evidence that can prove that she was an accomplic
e of Martin. Issue: W/N Romanas act of omission is punishable.
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
Decision: No. The discharge of a firearm that caused the, victim s death having
been purely accidental and wholly involuntary on the part of the accused, his ac
tion lacks the element essential for holding that it was performed with reckless
negligence, which requires that the damage be inflicted without malice but thro
ugh a voluntary act. In this case, there was no intent because Catangay had a ve
ry good relationship with the victim. There was no negligence either because ope
ning the latch while approaching the quarry is very usual for hunters. The emban
kment cannot also be anticipated. US vs. Ramirez Facts: Pedro Ramirez went on hu
nting together with two other companions. He asked his two companions to watch o
ver their prey while he looks for another. After walking for about 50 meters, he
seemed to have seen an eye of a deer and shot it. To his surprise, he shot one
of his companions. Issue: W/N there is reckless imprudence on this case. Decisio
n: Yes. He performed a voluntary act in discharging his gun, although the result
ing homicide was without malice, because he did not have the intention of killin
g the deceased. But nonetheless, he knew he had two companions, thus, he should
have exercised all the necessary diligence to avoid every undesirable accident.
Moreover, the eyes of a man is not luminous in the dark thus it would be impossi
ble to mistake it to that of a deer. The fact that the defendant offered to the
mother of the deceased a carabao and a horse by way of indemnity indicates that
the defendant admitted the commission of the crime although he performed that ac
t without criminal intent and only through imprudence. The accused is guilty of
homicide through reckless imprudence. REASON WHY CULPABLE FELONIES ARE PUNISHED
People vs. Maleza Facts: Maleza and Adlaon were charged with crimes of falsifica
tion of public documents by reason of reckless negligence. Maleza is the municip
al treasurer and he certified an account showing payments for the construction o
f the municipal building. Adlaon signed that he received the money when in fact
the money was never for the construction of municipal building but was to be giv
en to Bastes who loaned a sum of money to the municipal president and treasurer.
Defendants maintained that falsification does not constitute the crime complain
ed of. Issue: W/N reckless negligence is considered a crime. Decision: Between a
n act performed voluntarily and intentionally, and another committed unconscious
ly and quite unintentionally, there exists another, performed without malice, bu
t at the same time punishable, though in a lesser degree and with an equal mater
ial result; an intermediate act which the Penal 2.
Vena V. Verga
Code qualifies as negligence, or reckless negligence. Felonies are committed not
only by means of deceit (dolo) but also by means of fault (culpa). Note: Reason
for punishing acts of negligence: A man must use common sense, and exercise due
reflection in all his acts; it is his duty to be cautious, careful, and prudent
, if not from instinct, then through fear of incurring punishment. He is respons
ible for such results as anyone might foresee and for acts, which no one would h
ave performed, except through culpable abandon. Otherwise his own person, rights
and property, and those of his fellow beings, would ever be exposed to all mann
er of danger and injury. (People vs. Maleza and Adlaon).
Crimes punished under special laws. Rule: There is no need for the pattern analy
sis for acts that involve public policy (statutory law); no dolo is required (US
. vs. Go Chico) Act alone constitutes the offense
US vs. Siy Cong Bien Facts: Defendants Benito Siy Cong Bieng and Co Kong were co
nvicted of a violation of Section 7 of Act. No. 1655 of the Philippine Commissio
n known as the Pure Food and Drugs Act. Benito Siy Cong Bieng appealed for: (a)
He did not have any knowledge of the acts done by his agent which was the sale o
f adulterated coffee. (b) Co Kong was in charge of the store. Issue: W/N defenda
nt Siy Cong Being should be held liable for the actions of his store manager. De

cision: Under the Philippine Pure Food and Drugs Act, proof of the fact of the s
ale of prohibited drugs and food products is sufficient to sustain a conviction
of a violation of the statute, without proof of guilty knowledge of the fact of
adulteration or criminal intent in the making of the sale. It is a mistaken noti
on that positive, willful intent, as distinguished from a mere intent, to violat
e the criminal law, is an essential ingredient in every criminal offense, and th
at where there is the absence of such intent there is no offense; this is especi
ally so as to statutory offenses. When the statute plainly forbids an act to be
done, and it is done by some person, the law implies conclusively the guilty int
ent, although the offender was honestly mistaken as to the meaning of the law he
violates. When the language is plain and positive, and the offense is not made
to depend upon the positive, willful intent and purpose, nothing is left to inte
rpretation. 3. Mala Prohibita and Mala in Se Mala in Se Mala Prohibita
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
Definition Acts that are wrong from their nature. Intent governs. RPC Criminal I
ntent Acts that are wrong merely because it is prohibited by a statute. Intent i
s not important. Special penal laws Intent to perpetuate a crime People vs. Orqu
ijo and Ongsod
Vena V. Verga
Intent Violates Minimum required for a person to incur criminal liability 4.
Facts: Orquijo and Ongsod were guilty of the crime of robbery, in addition, Ongs
od was also found guilty of the crime of illegal possession of firearms. The tes
timony of the witnesses were credible and accurate, enough to call for a convict
ion. Ongsod contends that it was Orquijo who owned the gun and it was merely in
his possession when the Philippine constabulary seized it. He further stated tha
t he has every intention of surrendering the gun. Issue: W/N the absence of crim
inal intent and good faith are valid defenses in crimes punishable by special la
ws. Decision: No. It does not matter for the conviction of Ongsod that he is the
owner or borrower of the gun because this fact has no bearing on his guilt. The
mere unlicensed possession of firearm, regardless of the intent of the holder i
s sufficient to sustain a conviction. Since the offense is malum prohibitum puni
shed by special law, and good faith and absence of criminal intent are not valid
defenses. 6. Exceptions to the good faith rule in crimes of Mala Prohibita. Int
ent to perpetuate the act is required.
Good faith can be invoked as defense for violation of the RPC (Mala in Se)
Timoner vs. People Facts: The Court of Appeals found the petitioner guilty beyon
d reasonable doubt of the crime of Grave Coercion penalized under Art. 286 of th
e Revised Penal Code. The petitioner was the mayor of a town and by the recommen
dation of the Municipal Health Officer, he barricaded some establishments and st
alls which protruded into the sidewalk of the Maharlika highway and who were not
complying with certain health and sanitation requirement. The petitioner then f
iled a complaint against the owners of the stalls saying that these stalls const
ituted public nuisance as well as nuisance per se. The owners of the stalls char
ged the petitioner with the offense of grave coercion. Issue: W/N the conviction
of the court of appeals that the petitioner committed grave coercion is correct
the complainants were public nuisance. Decision: The court is in agreement that
the complainants were public nuisance for affecting a considerable number of pe
rsons in their neighborhood. Petitioner, as mayor of the town, merely implemente
d the aforesaid recommendation of the Municipal Health Officer. Having then acte
d in good faith in the performance of his duty, petitioner incurred no criminal
liability. Grave coercion is committed when "a person who, without authority of
law, shall by means of violence, prevent another from doing something not prohib
ited by law or compel to do something against his will, either it be right or wr
ong." The third element being absent in the case at bar, petitioner cannot be he
ld guilty of grave coercion. 5. Good Faith and absence of criminal intent are no
t valid defenses in crimes punished by special laws (Mala Prohibita)
People vs. Mallari Facts: Mallari was found guilty of illegal possession of fire
arms. Despite his plea that he already applied for the renewal of his license, w
hich expired some 3 months before he was arrested, a fact corroborated by an off
ice of the constabulary, he was still sentence by the lower court. Issue: W/N th
e lower court was correct in their decision. Decision: The accused was absolved.
In statutory offenses, it is enough that the statue has been violated and that
it is not necessary to inquire whether there was intent to violate it. However,
for the court can adopt a more liberal view. The spirit of the law regarding pos
session of firearms is to punish those who possess the same without knowledge of
the authorities concerned, and without even bothering themselves to legalize su
ch possession. Where the accused had a pending application for permanent permit

to possess a firearm, and such possession was not unknown to an agent of the law
who advised the former to keep it in the meantime, any doubt as to his claim sh
ould be resolved in his favor. People vs. Mapa Facts: The accused is a secret ag
ent contending that being such; he should be exempted from the law prohibiting i
llegal possession of firearm. Issue: W/N Mapa should be exempted from complying
with the law.
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desired of one s act while the latter relates to the moral significance that per
son ascribes to the said act. Hence a person may not intend to shoot another but
may be aware of the consequences of his negligent act, which may cause injury t
o the same person in negligently handling an air rifle. Discernment constitutes
an exception to the exemption from criminal liability of a minor under fifteen y
ears of age but over nine, who commits an act prohibited by law, is his mental c
apacity to understand the difference between right and wrong. In evaluating felo
nies committed by means of culpa, three (3) elements are indispensable, namely,
intelligence, freedom of action, and negligence. Obviously, intent is wanting in
such felonies. However, intelligence remains as an essential element, hence, it
is necessary that a minor above nine but below fifteen years of age be possesse
d with intelligence in committing a negligent act which results in a quasi-offen
se. For him to be criminally liable, he must discern the rightness or wrongness
of the effects of his negligent act. Indeed, a minor over nine years of age but
below fifteen may be held liable for a quasi-offense under Article 365. (b) (1)
(2) (c) Kinds of Intent general notion of intent motive is not essential in esta
blishing this notion of criminal intent specific notion of intent there is no gr
eat difference between specific criminal intent ad motive. Distinguished from Mo
Decision: As secret agent is not included in the enumeration in Section 879 of t
he Revised Administrative Code of persons who are not prohibited in Section 878,
Revised Administrative Code, as amended by Republic Act No. 4, from possessing
any firearm. Appellant is not also exempted from the requirement of license. The
first and fundamental duty of courts is to apply the law. Construction and inte
rpretation come only after it has been demonstrated that application is impossib
le or inadequate without them.
1. 2.
Pattern of analysis in determining criminal liability Was there criminal intent
(dolo)? Or was the act done by means of culpa (imprudence/negligence)? Delito De
loso and Delito Culposa Elements Delito Deloso (dolo) Freedom Intelligence Inten
t (a) Delito culposa (culpa) Freedom Intelligence Negligence/Imprudence
Intent Defined distinguished from discernment
Guevarra vs. Hon. Ignacio Almodovar Facts: Petitioner John Philip Guevarra, 11 y
ears old, was playing with his best friend. They were target-shooting a bottle c
ap placed with an air rifle borrowed from a neighbor. In the course of their gam
e, Teodoro was hit by a pellet on his left collar bone which caused his death. F
iscal exculpated petitioner due to his age and because the unfortunate occurrenc
e appeared to be an accident. The victim s parents appealed to the Ministry of J
ustice, which ordered the Fiscal to file a case against petitioner for Homicide
through reckless Imprudence. The petitioner was in position that "discernment" c
onnotes "intent". The Solicitor General insists that discernment and intent are
two different concepts. Issue: 1. 2. W/N an eleven (11) year old boy could be ch
arged with the crime of homicide thru reckless imprudence. W/N the term "discern
ment", as used in Article 12(3) of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) is synonymous wi
th "intent."
WHEN MOTIVE IS RELEVANT People vs. Dorico Facts: Romualdo Dorico, Dionisio Ballo
nico and Fernando Dorico were all found guilty beyond reasonable doubt for murde
ring Gervacio Dapulag and was sentenced each with death penalty. The three were

said to have killed the accused because he insisted on filing a criminal complai
nt against Romualdo for the killing of his nephew. Dionisio said that he was mer
ely a bystander and did not participate in the crime Issue: W/N motive is releva
nt to establish guilt Decision: It is true that no motive has been shown why he
would kill Gervacio Dapulag, but this Court has repeatedly held that motive is p
ertinent only when there is doubt as to the identity of the culprit. This not a
situation which falls under who had done it since DIONISIO BALLONICO was positivel
y identified by credible witnesses as one of the assailants of the victim. Proof
of motive is not essential for conviction. There was no reason shown why the wi
tnesses for the prosecution would foist a crime on DIONISIO BALLONICO if he did
not really commit it. Disclosure of motive is an aid in completing the proof of
the commission of the crime.
Decision: The two terms should not be confused. It is clear that the terms "inte
nt" and "discernment" convey two distinct thoughts. While both are products of t
he mental processes within a person, the former refers to the
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An extreme moral perversion may lead a man to commit a crime with a real motive
but just for the sake of committing it. Or, he apparent lack of a motive for com
mitting a criminal act does not necessarily mean that there are none, but that s
imply they are not known to us, for we cannot probe into the depths of one s con
science where they may be found, bidden away and inaccessible to our observation
. WHEN MOTIVE IS IRRELEVANT When assailant is positively identified People vs. D
iva Facts: Maximo Diva and his wife were accused of murdering Ananias Bano. Thei
r dispute was regarding boundaries of the adjoining lands they own. On the day t
he crime was committed, Maximo and Cesaria Diva conspired to attack the victim.
Before the victims life expired, he was able to tell his wife who his attackers w
ere. Maximo and Cesaria contended that it was Ananias who first attacked them an
d that Maximo merely defended himself. Maximo also contended that the trial cour
t erred in saying that the motive of the killing was a land case because he has
no interest therein since it was his father who was the plaintiff in the said ca
se. Even if there is such motive, it is not a sufficient ground for him to ambus
h, attack and kill Ananias. Since the prosecution was not able to establish the
motive, Maximo claims that he should not be convicted of the crime. Issue: W/N t
he motive is needed to convict the defendants. Decision: No. Motive is not impor
tant to have a conviction. The question of what motive is sufficient to impel on
e to commit a particular act is always relative and no fixed norm of conduct can
be said to be decisive of every imaginable case. But motive is unessential to c
onviction in murder cases when there is no doubt as to the identity of the culpr
it or where the offender had admitted the deed; and the failure of the prosecuti
on to establish motive is completely inconsequential. Where, as in this case, th
e identity of the appellant as the author of the killing is not disputed as he a
dmitted having killed the deceased, his motive in committing the act becomes irr
elevant to his conviction and the failure of the State to establish his motive i
s of no moment. Note: When assailant is positively identified, motive need not b
Note: Circumstantial Evidences defined: indirect evidence; fact that was seen in
the vicinity of the crime; an aid to the prosecution; proof of crime US vs. Go
Foo Suy Facts: Fire broke out in house no. 30. After some time, fire also broke
out in House no. 26, which was just across the passageway from House No, 30. The
accused had dry goods store in house no. 26. However, witnesses testified that
the fire in House no. 26 broke out when the fire in House no. 30 was about to be
put out. While the firefighters were trying to break into the storeroom, they h
eard something moving. When they got inside, they found a hole, which supported
the fact that someone, set fire on house no. 26. Issue: W/N the accused was guil
ty of arson. Decision: The accused were found guilty of the crime. The fact that
the defendants owned a stock of goods, that it was insured for three times its
value, and that their business operations over a period approximately eighteen m
onths just prior to the fire had resulted in a considerable loss, furnishes a po
werful motive for the commission of the crime (circumstantial evidence). The app
ellants had been conducting their business at a loss for nearly 18 months. The s
uccess of their crime meant that they would receive about twice the value of the
ir stock of goods and thus converting a losing investment into a profitable one.
Lack of motive may be an aid in showing the innocence of the accused People vs.
Taneo Facts: Potenciano Taneo was accused of parricide for killing his wife, an
d wounding his father in law and two of their guests. It appears from the eviden
ce that that the day before the commission of the crime, the accused had a fight
with Enrique Collantes and Valentin Abadilla, who invited him to come down and
fight, and when he was about to go down, he was stopped by his wife and his moth
er. On the day of the commission of the crime, it was noted that the defendant w
as not feeling well, thus, he went to bed and slept. The defendant states that w
hen he fell asleep, he dreamed that Collantes was trying to stab him with a bolo
while Abadilla held his feet, by reason of which he got up; and as it seemed to

him that his enemies were inviting him to come down, he armed himself with a bo
lo and left the room. Issue: W/N the defendant is guilty of the crime of parrici
de. Decision: No. The defendant was not held suddenly hot up in his sleep left t
he room meeting with his wife who tried to stop attacked other, for having acted
in a dream; liable for the crime. A person who with a bolo in his hand, and upo
n him, wounded her abdomen and he had no criminal intent.
US vs. Ramirez
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It must be noted that there could be no motive in this case because Ramirez and
the victim were good friends. The act could not have been done deliberately. PRO
Vena V. Verga
extremely disappointed in President Roxas for his alleged failure to redeem his
promises made by him during the presidential election. Hence, he was determined
to assassinate the president. He carried two hand grenades in Plaza Miranda and
hurled it on the stage where the president was making a speech. General Castaned
a, upon seeing the grenade, kicked it away from the platform. When the grenade e
xploded, it injured Simeon Varela and four other men. Simeon died because of the
injuries he sustained. Issue: W/N Julio Guillen is guilty of the crime charge c
onsidering that it was the president which he intended to kill and not Simeon Va
Facts: Mariano Marcos, his son Ferdinand Marcos and brother in law, Quirino Liza
rdo were accused for the murder of Julio Nalundasan, Marianos archrival. During t
he 1935 elections, Julio won over Mariano for the office of representative of Il
ocos Norte. During the victory parade, Julios men were said to have passed over M
arianos house to humiliate the defeated candidate. The following night, Julio was
found dead. The Marcoses and Lizardo became the suspects. The primary witness o
f the prosecution was Lizardos bodyguard who said that he was there when the crim
e was committed and the motive was said to be the victory parade before Julios de
ath. Issue: W/N the parade was a sufficient motive to warrant a sentence. Decisi
on: No. While the defeat of Marcos followed by such insulting parade, might have
irritated the herein defendants, the existence of a motive alone, though perhap
s an important consideration, is not proof of the commission of a crime, much le
ss of the guilt of the defendants-appellants. By and large, the court found the
testimony of Aguinaldo to be inherently improbable and full of contradictions in
important details, thus it shall be discredited. It is neither necessary nor pr
ofitable to examine the corroborative evidence presented by the prosecution. Whe
re the principal and basic evidence upon which the prosecution rests its case fa
ils, all evidence intended to support or corroborate it must likewise fail. (d)
When crimes may be committed without criminal intent
Decision: Yes. In throwing a hand grenade at the President with the intention of
killing him, the appellant acted with malice. He is therefore liable for all th
e consequences of his wrongful act; for in accordance with article 4 of the Revi
sed Penal Code, criminal liability is incurred by any person committing a felony
(delito) although the wrongful act done be different from that which he intende
d to do. In the words of Viada, in order that an act may be qualified as impruden
ce it is necessary that neither malice nor intention to cause injury should inte
rvene; where such intention exists, the act should be qualified by the felony it
has produced, even though it may not have been the intention of the actor to ca
use an evil of such gravity as that produced. The qualifying circumstance of trea
chery may properly be considered, even when the victim of the attack was not the
one whom the defendant intended to kill, if it appears from the evidence that n
either of the two persons could in any manner put up a defense against the attac
k, or became aware of it. In criminal negligence, the injury caused to another s
hould be unintentional, it being simply the incident of another act performed wi
thout malice. People vs. Nanquil GR No. 17933 March 23, 1922 Facts: Nanquil was
investigating a certain Severino Ramiscal for the theft of Juan Rosass carabao. D
uring the investigation, Nanquil struck Severino with his gun. As a consequence,
the victim died after a few moments. Issue: W/N the accused should be charged w
ith a crime of homicide through reckless imprudence. Decision: Yes. The accused
having had no intention to commit so serious an evil as that which resulted, the
crime committed by him cannot be that of homicide through reckless imprudence,
because he did have the intention to do some evil unlawfully (maltreating the de
ceased), and this intention, although it was not that of killing, is inconsisten

t with reckless imprudence. (f) (g) (h) in both, acts are voluntary (People vs.
Ramirez) Acts that are negligently executed are voluntary Intent is shown by ove
rt acts
LA PROHIBITA (e) Intentional and Culpable Felonies Distinguished
People vs. Guillen GR No. L-1477 January 18, 1950 Facts: Julio Guillen was found
guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of murder and multiple frustrated m
urder. According to the accused, he was
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Issue: W/N the accused was guilty of the said crime considering that his actions
were not contrary to law. Decision: That act of the accused, in permitting the
sums deposited with him to be attached in the satisfaction of the judgment rende
red by him, was not unlawful. Everything he did was in good faith under the beli
ef that he was acting judiciously and correctly. The act committed, so far as ap
pears form the record, at most a pure mistake of judgment, an error of the mind
operating upon a state of facts. A crime is not committed if the mind if the per
son performing the act complained of be innocent (actus non facit reum, nisi mes
sit rea). Good faith is a defense and in this case, there is good faith. Good f
aith negates intent. When there is no intent, there is no crime. Note: It is a p
rima facie evidence in Malversation that such missing funds or property have bee
n put to personal use or used for personal ends by such person. In this case, it
was not proven that the accused justice of peace used the money for personal us
e. US vs. Ah Chong Facts: Defendant was a cook and the deceased was a house boy,
and both were employed in the same place and usually slept in the same room. On
e night, after the defendant had gone to bed, he was awakened by some one trying
to open the door, and called out twice. Believing that he was being attacked, h
e seized a kitchen knife, struck and fatally wounded the intruder, who turned ou
t to be his roommate. Issue: W/N Ah Chong should be acquitted because of mistake
of fact. Decision: Under such circumstances, there is no criminal liability, pr
ovided that the ignorance or mistake of fact was not due to negligence or bad fa
ith. In other words, if such ignorance or mistake of facts is sufficient to nega
te a particular intent which, under the law, is a necessary ingredient of the of
fense charged it destroys the presumption of intent and works an acquittal; exce
pt in those cases where the circumstances demand a conviction under the penal pr
ovisions governing negligence, and in cases where, under the provisions of artic
le 1 of the Penal Code, a person voluntarily committing an act incurs criminal l
iability even though the act be different from that which he intended to commit.
The circumstances proved that in Ah Chongs mind, he was being attacked, regardle
ss of the circumstances outside him. Would the facts been as he though them to b
e, there would have been no crime. Mistake of fact indicates good faith. Good fa
ith negates intent. Without intent, there is no crime. Note:
People vs. Mabug-at Facts: The accused and Juana Buralo were sweethearts. One da
y, the accused invited Juana to take a walk with him, but the latter refused on
account of the accused having frequently visited the house of a certain Carmen.
Later on, the accused went to a house where Juana had gone to take part in some
devotion. Thereafter, the accused threatened that if Juana refuses to see him, h
e will enter the house, get the gild and kill anyone who would stop him. After t
he devotion, the accused followed the girl and her niece on their way home. When
they were about to go up their house, the accused fired a shot intended for Jua
na but which wounded Perfecta instead. Issues: W/N the accused is guilty of frus
trated murder. Decision: Yes. Although the mere act of firing at a person is not
proof per se of intent to kill, yet when the surrounding circumstances of the a
ct are such that they leave no room for doubt that the intention was to kill the
person fired upon, the crime is not simply "discharge of firearm," but homicide
or murder as the case may be. The qualifying circumstance of treachery may prop
erly be considered, even when the victim of the attack was not the one whom the
defendant intended to kill, if it appears from the evidence that neither of the
two persons could in any manner put up a defense against the attack, or become a
ware of it. (i) Criminal Intent Presumed from Commission of the crime
Mistake of fact while ignorance of the law excuses no one (ignorantia legis non
excusat), ignorance or mistake of fact relieves tha accused from criminal liabil
ity (ignoratia facti excusat) MISTAKE OF FACT AS A DEFENSE People vs. Catolico G
R No. 6486 02 March 1911 Facts: The defendant, a justice of peace, was charged o
f malversation of public funds. He rendered decisions in certain cases, each one

for damages resulting from a breach of contract, from which the defendants appe
aled. As required by law, the defendants deposited Php 16.00 and a bond of Php 5
0.00 for each case. It appeared that the sureties on the said bonds were insolve
nt and that the defendants did not present new bonds within the time fixed by th
e accused as justice of peace. Upon petition of the plaintiffs, the accused dism
issed the appeals and ordered said sums attached and delivered to the plaintiffs
in satisfaction of the judgment. The accused was prosecuted for malversation, a
felony under Art. 217.
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2. 2. 3. 4. Lack of intent to kill the deceased, because the intention was to ki
ll another, does not relieve the accused from criminal responsibility (People vs
. Gona). In mistake of fact, the intention of the accused in performing the act
should be lawful. There is no crime of resistance when there is a mistake of fac
t (US vs. Bautista) When the accused is negligent, mistake of fact is not a defe
nse. (People vs. Fernando)
Vena V. Verga
the consent of his or her parents. The women believed that she was born in 1879;
that so her parents gave her to understand ever since she was young; and she di
d not ask them concerning her age. In the same instance, the husband relied on t
he statement of his wife that she is of age when they got married. Issue: W/N th
e husband and the wife violated the said provision of the Penal code Decision: A
minor who marries without parental consent in the false belief that she is of a
ge is not criminally responsible. It is not criminal negligence for a husband to
rely upon his wife s statement of her age nor for the wife to rely upon that of
her father. In effect it suffices to remember the first article, which states t
hat where there is no intent there is no crime. In order to assert without fear
of mistake that in our Code the substance of a crime does not exist if there is
not a deed, an act that falls within the sphere of ethics if there is not a mora
l wrong. One cannot be convicted under Art. 475 when by reason of a mistake of f
acts there does not exist the intention to commit the crime. Mistake of fact est
ablishes good faith because have the facts been as she thought them to be, the a
ct would have been lawful. Good faith negates intent. When there is no intention
, there is no crime. Good faith is transferable (in this case, to the husband).
Note: There is no felony by dolo if there is no intent. People vs. Coching Facts
: Coching and several others were accused of falsification of public document an
d violation of the election code. Conching and the others sincerely believed tha
t booklets 4100 to 4120 were sample ballots because three ballots from the bookl
et were detached and two ballots were used to cover the openings of the boxes th
at was given to them before the election. They have no way of checking since the
receipt copy signed by Coching when he received the ballots were not given to t
hem. Thus, they did not include in the counting booklets 4100 to 4120. Issue: W/
N Coching and the others are guilty of the crime charges. Decision: No. The lowe
r court was in agreement that the defendants did not intend to perpetuate the ac
t. But according to them, since the act is malum prohibitum against a law/statut
e, intention is immaterial. The Court is in disagreement with this notion. The a
ct, according to the court, being an act mala prohibita has no bearing on the ca
se because this is not a case of willful or conscious violation of a penal statu
e, nor of ignorance of the law. The case at bar is a case of ignorance of the fa
ct. The defendants are in honest belief that the series of unused ballots were n
ot official but sample ballots. Upholding the maxim ignorantia facti excusat as
established in People vs. Oanis. The courts should judge the accused not by the
facts as they later turned out to be
Good faith has many sources (a) Mistake of fact (b) Act is lawful The point is:
when good faith is established, it negates criminal intent. No criminal intent,
no crime. People vs. Formaran No. 12089-CR Facts: Formaran was accused of a crim
e of perjury for having sworn to a Civil Service Form No. 1 before a notary publ
ic that he was never accused of a violation of any law before any court or tribu
nal, when the truth and in fact he had been charged with the offense of unjust v
exation in a criminal case before the Justice of the Peace Court. When he testif
ied in his defense, the defendant claimed that he answered No to the question whet
her he had been accused of a violation of any law, because he relied on the opin
ion of the provincial fiscal that unjust vexation does not involve moral turpitu
de and he thought it was not necessary to mention it in Civil Service Form No. 1
. It appeared that he was previously prosecuted twice for perjury for answering N
O to the same question but he was acquitted on the first case and the second case
was dismissed. Issue: W/N Formaran was unjustly prosecuted on the case at bar.

Decision: No. it was held that in view of the factual background of the case, th
e act of the defendant in answering no to the question can be considered only as a
n error of judgment and did not indicate an intention to commit the crime of per
jury. The defendant was not liable for the crime because he had no intent to com
mit the crime. Note: Lack of intent to commit a crime may be inferred from the f
acts of the case. People vs. Penalosa GR No 424 January 27, 1902 Facts: A minor
married without parental consent, in violation of Art 475 of he old Penal Code w
hich punished any minor who shall contract marriage without
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but what they believed to be as facts at the time of the offense and the conditi
ons obtaining them (US vs. Ah Chong). Defendants were acquitted. MISTAKE OF FACT
NOT A DEFENSE See: People vs. Oanis People vs. de Fernando GR No 24978 27 March
1926 Facts: The accused, a policeman, was informed that three convicts had esca
ped. The residents of the barrio were alarmed of the news. While doing rounds in
the barrio, he was called by the daughter of a certain Delgado to inform him th
at three unknown persons were prowling around their house. After some time, they
saw a person going up the stairs dressed in dark clothes and carrying a bolo. A
ccused called out to the person to identify himself. The person, did not answer
thus, de Fernando fired a shot in the air. As the unknown person continued to as
cend the stairs and believing that he was one of the escaped convicts, the accus
ed fired directly at the man who turned our to be the nephew of the house. Issue
: W/N de Fernando was guilty of homicide through reckless negligence. Decision:
Yes. An agent of the law, to whom notice had been given of the presence of suspi
cious looking persons, who might be escaped prisoners from a nearby penitentiary
, prowling around the vicinity, and who enters a house to keep watch, and later
in the evening sees a person with a bolo in hand approaching the house in the -a
ttitude of going up the stairs, who does not answer the challenge of the officer
of the law, and continues his advance notwithstanding that the latter had fired
a shot into the air, and the said agent of the law considering that the said st
ranger has not been recognized by any person in the household, and thinking him
to be an evil-doer, shoots and kills him, is not guilty of murder or homicide. H
e however, acted with reckless negligence in failing to exercise the ordinary di
ligence that, under the circumstances, he should have exercised by inquiring of
the occupants of the house whether the stranger was known to them, as he seemed
to have called somebody in the house, or was really what be thought him to be, b
efore shooting him, which makes said officer guilty of homicide through reckless
Vena V. Verga
PEOPLE vs. BINDOY Facts: The accused was charged of the crime of homicide for wo
unding with his bolo Emigdio who was merely a spectator of the fight, which ensu
ed between the defendant and a certain Pacas. Issue: W/N Bindoy should be charge
d for killing Emigdio Decision: The appellant should be acquitted since there is
no evidence, which shows that Emigdio took part in the fight. Neither was there
any indication that the accused was aware of the victims presence. Had the defen
dant tried to wound his adversary and instead had bit the bystander, he would, o
f course, have had to answer for his criminal act. But in view of the evidence,
the injury was accidental and the defendant should be acquitted. (1) PEOPLE vs.
SALINAS 62 O.G. 3186 Facts: Crisanto Salinas was charged for the death of Jaime
Tibule. Jaime died after falling from his mothers hold while the mother was freei
ng his father from Crisantos hold. Crisanto was holding the victims grandfather in
order to prevent him from fighting with the defendants father. Issue: W/N Crisan
to should be liable for the death of the baby Decision: No. The accepted rule is
that an offender is always liable for the consequence of his criminal action ev
en though the result be different from what he intended. Under the circumstances
, it cannot be held that the accused was committing a crime and it cannot be sai
d that the death of the child was a direct result of a crime. The act being lawf
ul, there could have been no crime committed. The defendant was acquitted. (b) U
S vs. VALDEZ Wrong done is direct, natural, logical consequence of felony commit
ted When act is lawful
XVII.Article 4: Criminal Liability

Committing a felony even if the consequences are unintended Elements: (a) Felony
is committed
Facts: The accused was not satisfied with the slow raising of the anchor which c
aused him to abuse his men with offensive language. One of the crew remonstrated
that they would be able to work better if the accused stops insulting them. Inf
uriated, the accused moved towards the victim with big knife threatening to stab
him. The victim, believing that he is going to be killed, threw himself in wate
r and never resurface. Issue: W/N the defendant should be liable for his crews de
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61 PHIL. 341 Decision: Yes. The crews death was a consequence of the defendants ac
tion. If a person against whom, a criminal assault is directed reasonably believ
es himself to be in danger of death or great bodily harm, a d in order to escape
jumps into water, impelled by the instincts of self-preservation, the assailant
us responsible for homicide in case death results by drowning. PEOPLE vs. QUIAN
SON 62 PHIL. 162 Facts: The defendant, was convicted of a crime of homicide for
the death of Andres Aribuabo, a deranged person who constantly asked for food fr
om the former. The defendant took hold of a firebrand and applied it to the abdo
men of the man who pestered him. Victim was treated in the hospital but died. De
fendant contends that the victim would have survived if he did not remove the dr
ainage placed to isolate the infection. Issue: W/N Quianson should be held liabl
e for the death of the victim Decision: One who inflicts an injury on another is
deemed by law to be guilty of homicide if the injury contributes mediately or i
mmediately to the death of the victim. The fact that other causes contribute to
the death does not relieve the actor of responsibility. As the wound, which the
appellant inflicted upon the deceased, was the cause, which determined his death
, it is evident that the act in question should be qualified as homicide. (1) PE
OPLE vs. ILLUSTRE 54 PHIL. 544 Facts: The defendant, who was in charged in makin
g sure that the roasted pig will not be consumed before the end of the parade ga
ve a blow to Juan Magsino who tried getting a piece of the pig. Juan died of int
ernal hemorrhage and contusion on the liver. Issue: W/N the defendant should be
held liable for the death of the victim. Decision: Yes. It was the defendants blo
w in the right hypocondrium, which bruised the liver and produced internal hemor
rhage. That the victim had a delicate condition and suffered from incipient tube
rculosis does not affect criminal liability of the defendant who gave him a seve
re blow, which was the cause of the death; even of the weakened condition made t
he blow more fatal, the efficient cause of the death remains the same. There was
no intent but this does not extinguish the crime. (2) Blow was proximate cause
of death PEOPLE vs. REYES Blow was efficient cause of death
Vena V. Verga
Facts: The appellant and victim were having an illicit relationship. When the vi
ctim tried to end their affair, the appellant dragged the deceased towards the s
treets and stabbed her in the chest with the fan knife. The victim was said to h
ave died from shock. Issue: W/N the appellant should be acquitted considering th
e fact that the wound was only a slight one Decision: No. In this jurisdiction,
it is a well settled that such is not the law. A person is responsible for the c
onsequences of his criminal act even of the deceased have been shown to be suffe
ring from a deceased heart (which was not shown). Appellants assault being the pr
oximate cause of the death, he should be responsible. The girl died from shock a
s a result of the wound inflicted by the defendant. There is intention in the co
mmission of the crime because when a person who stabs another with a lethal weap
on, death could reasonable be anticipated. The accused is presumed to have inten
ded the natural consequences of the wrongful act. (i) How proximate cause is det
VDA. DE BATACLAN, ET AL. vs. MEDINA 102 PHIL. 181 Facts: The victim, husband of
the petitioner, died from the explosion of the bus of which he was a passenger.
Before the explosion, the vehicle zig-zagged into a canal, causing said bus to o
verturn. Due to overturning of the bus, the gasoline leaked soaking the soil und
erneath thus, when the rescuers came with torches came near the bus; the bus was
set on fire. Issue: W/N the overturning of the bus was the proximate cause of t
he death. Decision: Yes. The reason that when the vehicle turned, the leaking of
the gasoline was the natural consequence. It was also natural that the rescuers
would innocently approach the bus to extend aid. Thus, the burning of the bus w
as a natural cause and should be attributed to the negligence of the driver and
the conductor. (ii) Definition URBANO vs. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT 157 SCRA
1 Facts: Urbano was charged for the crime of homicide for the death of Marcelo J

avier. A fight ensued between the two when Urbano learned that Javier
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opened the floodgates thereby causing his palay to be flooded. Marcelo was only
hit in the palm and while the wound was healing, the victim continued working. A
fter 22 days, he died from tetanus. Issue: W/N the hacking incident can be consi
dered a proximate cause of Marcelos death. Decision: No. Proximate cause it the c
ase, which in natural and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient interve
ning cause, produces injury, and without which, the result would not have occurr
ed. The hacking incident could not have been the cause of the victims death since
the tetanus appeared only on the 22nd day after the hacking incident. It is pos
sible that the victim may have been inflicted with a mild tetanus but since Javi
er died only two or three days from the onset, it is logical to assume that ther
e may be other causes other than the hacking incident. It is a rule that in crim
inal conviction, the proof that the accused caused the victims death must convinc
e a rational mind beyond reasonable doubt. Since there may be other efficient ca
uses of the death, the accused should be acquitted. (iii) When felony committed
not proximate cause: (3) Intervening active force, which is distinct and absolut
ely foreign to felonious act of accused (i) Resulting injury is due to intention
al act of victim (ii) Death attributable to fever prevalent in locality
Vena V. Verga
obey thus, defendant struck him on the thighs with a slipper. Two days later, th
e child died. Issue: W/N the defendant should be held liable for the death of th
e child. Decision: No. Since the cause of the death was unknown, the defendant c
annot be held liable for said death. Embate was acquitted. (iv) Death attributab
le to tetanus URBANO vs. INTERMEDIATE APPELLATE COURT (4) Blow accelerated death
PEOPLE vs. RODRIGUEZ Facts: The defendant was charged with having dealt with Man
ciano Magno with two blows which knocked the victim down. It was found that Magn
o provoked the defendant. Decision: When the fact is well established that the a
ccused struck the victim twice with his fist, in the abdomen and in the back, wh
erefore the latter fell to the ground and had hardly risen and started to walk w
hen he again fell down dead, the crime committed is rightly classified as homici
de and the accused is responsible therefore. Even though a blow with the fist or
a kick does not cause any external wound it may easily produce inflammation of
the spleen and peritonitis and cause death, and even though the victim may have
been previously affected by some internal malady, yet if a blow with the fist or
foot accelerated death, he who caused such acceleration is responsible for the
death as the result of an injury willfully and unlawfully inflicted. (c) When th
ere is an intervening cause US vs. PALALON The defendant was convicted of homici
de largely on the testimony of a young physician who stated, in substance, that
he examined the body of the deceased on the day after the commission of the crim
e and found ecchymosis on the body from which he concluded that hard blows had b
een inflicted on the deceased and that as a result thereof, there was a congesti
on of the right lung which was the principal cause of the death. No autopsy of t
he body was made and the physician admitted that his conclusions were partly bas
ed upon the statements of the members of the family of the deceased. Held: That
the testimony of the physician was not conclusive and that the ecchymosis descri
bed by him might have been nothing, but suggillations or "death spots" formed af
ter the death. In case of death under suspicious circumstances, it is the duty o
f the physician performing the post mortem. examination to exercise the utmost c
are and not draw unwarranted conclusions from external appearances susceptible o
f different interpretations. (1) Instances not constituting efficient intervenin
g cause:
PEOPLE vs. PALALON 49 PHIL. 177 Facts: Appellant was found guilty of the crime o
f homicide for the death of a child whom he slapped after answering insolently.
The child fell but continued to work. That same afternoon, the child was brought
home sick by his father. One-half days later, the child died. The doctor testif
ied it was the blow which was the cause of the death. Issue: W/N the defendant s
hould be held liable for the death of the child. Decision: No. It appears that t

he examination of the body was incomplete and the conclusion of the doctor have
been much more than mere guesses. Furthermore, it was proven that fever was prev
alent among the children in the locality thus, there is reasonable doubt as to t
he true cause of the death. Appellant therefore should be acquitted. (iii) Cause
of death not proved US vs. EMBATE Facts: The child has been seriously ill for t
hree weeks. One day, as the child lain on a damp floor, defendant ordered said c
hild to transfer. The child did not
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(i) Weak or diseased physical condition of victim
Vena V. Verga
fingers of the left hand, a motion for a new trial will be denied when based upo
n the allegation that appellant would be able to prove, if opportunity were give
n, that the finger, although useless at present, could be restored to substantia
lly its normal condition by a surgical operation. A person injured in an assault
is not obliged to submit to a surgical operation to relieve the person who assa
ulted him from the results of his crime. (d) Even if unintended. (1) Error in pe
rsonae: mistake in identity of victim PEOPLE vs. OANIS PEOPLE vs. GONA There can
be no doubt that the defendant killed Mapudul and that he is guilty of the crim
e charged, but his attorney argues that in view of the fact that said defendant
had no intention to kill the deceased and committed the crime by mistake, he sho
uld have been found guilty of homicide through negligence under paragraph 1 of a
rticle 568 of the Penal Code and not of the graver crime of intentional homicide
. This contention is contrary to earlier decisions of this court. In the case of
United States vs. Mendieta (34 Phil., 242), the court said: "Even admitting tha
t the defendant intended to injure Hilario Lauigan instead of Pedro Acierto, eve
n that, in view of the mortal wound which he inflicted upon the latter, in no wa
y could be considered as a relief from his criminal act. That he made a mistake
in killing one man instead of another, when it is proved that he acted malicious
ly and willfully, cannot relieve him from criminal responsibility. Neither do we
believe that the fact that he "And any such person who shall make a false or fr
audulent return shall be punished by a fine not exceeding ten thousand pesos or
by imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years, or both." (2) Aberratio ictu
s: mistake in the blow PEOPLE vs. MABUG-AT (3) Prater intentionem: injurious res
ult is greater than that intended
PEOPLE vs. ILLUSTRE, SUPRA PEOPLE vs. REYES, SUPRA (ii) Nervousness or temperame
nt of victim PEOPLE vs. ALMONTE When a person dies in consequence of an internal
hemorrhage brought on by moving about against the doctor s orders, not because
of carelessness or a desire to increase the criminal liability of his assailant,
but because of his nervous condition due to the wound inflicted by said assaila
nt, the crime is homicide and not merely slight physical injuries, simply becaus
e the doctor was of opinion that the wound might have healed in seven days. The
accused is then liable for all acts contrary to law and their natural and logica
l consequences. PEOPLE vs. QUIANSON Where it does not appear that the victim, in
removing the drainage from his wound, had acted voluntarily and with the knowle
dge that he was performing an act prejudicial to his health, as this should be a
ttributed to his pathological condition and to his state of nervousness and rest
lessness on account of the physical pain caused by the peritonitis from which he
was suffering, such act of the victim does not have the effect of altering the
natural juridical consequences of the punishable act of the accused all the more
because, as the defense itself claims, the victim was mentally deranged. (iii)
Causes inherent in victim: (1) Addiction to tuba drinking US vs. BAYUTAS The fac
t that the victim was addicted to the habit of drinking tuba, on account of whic
h it is admitted that his constitution and physical condition retarded the heali
ng of his wounds, according to the opinion of the physician who attended him, be
yond the time that it should have taken, cannot lessen the assailant s responsib
ility, because he is responsible for all the consequences of the personal injury
which was produced by the act that he had willfully performed in violation of a
prohibitive law, and because his responsibility cannot be lessened on account o
f the bad state of health and the weakened constitution of the victim. (2) Victi
m did no know how to swim US vs. VALDEZ, SUPRA (iv) Neglect of victim or third p
erson: (1) Victim refused medical attendance or surgical operation
PEOPLE vs. CAGOCO Keywords: Fell backwards Decision: Under the circumstances of
this case the defendant is liable for the killing of the deceased because his de
ath was the direct consequence of defendants felonious act of striking him on th

e head. If the defendant had not committed the assault in a treacherous manner,
he would nevertheless have been guilty of homicide, although he did not intend t
o kill the deceased, and since the defendant did commit the crime with treachery
, he is guilty of murder because of the presence of the qualifying circumstance
of treachery. 2. Cause of the cause is the cause of the evil caused
US vs. MARASIGAN Where it appears from the evidence in the case that the appella
nt inflicted a wound upon the complaining witness which destroyed the use of one
of the
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If a person against whom a criminal assault is directed reasonably believes hims
elf to be in danger of death or great bodily harm and in order to escape jumps i
nto the water, impelled by the instinct of self preservation, the assailant is r
esponsible for homicide in case death results by drowning Appellant should likew
ise be chargeable with Homicide. The mitigating circumstance of lack of intent t
o commit so grave a wrong cannot be appreciated in appellant s favor. The determ
ined resolution to do the victim wrong was evident when, even after the victim h
ad disappeared beneath the surface of the sea, he cruelly asked "are you already
dead?" Appellant s bid for acquittal in his sixth assignment of error, therefor
e, deserves no consideration. II. IMPOSSIBLE CRIMES Requisites: 1. act performed
is against property 2. That the act was done with evil intent 3. That its accom
plishment is inherently impossible or the means employed is either inadequate or
ineffectual 4. The act performed should not constitute a violation f another pr
ovision of the RPC INTOD vs. CA In our jurisdiction, impossible crimes are recog
nized. The impossibility of accomplishing the criminal intent is not merely a de
fense, but an act penalized by itself. Furthermore, the phrase "inherent impossi
bility" that is found in Article 4(2) of the Revised Penal Code makes no distinc
tion between factual or physical impossibility and legal impossibility. Ubi lex
non distinguit nee nos distinguiere debemos. The factual situation in the case a
t bar presents a physical impossibility which rendered the intended crime imposs
ible of accomplishment. And under Article 4, paragraph 2 of the Revised Penal Co
de, such is sufficient to make the act an impossible crime. 1. To uphold the con
tention of respondent that the offense was Attempted Murder because the absence
of Palangpangan was a supervening cause independent of the actor s will, will re
nder useless the provision in Article 4, which makes a person criminally liable
for an act "which would be an offense against persons or property, were it not f
or the inherent impossibility of its accomplishment x x x." In that case, all ci
rcumstances which prevented the consummation of the offense will be treated as a
n accident independent of the actor s will which is an element of attempted and
frustrated felonies. Impossible crime An impossible crime is an act which would
be an offense against person or property were it not for the inherent impossibil
ity of its accomplishment or on account of the employment of inadequate or ineff
ectual means. Question & Answer
Vena V. Verga
1. Accused was a houseboy in a house where only a spinster resides. It is custom
ary for the spinster to sleep nude because her room was warm. It was also the ha
bit of the houseboy that whenever she enters her room, the houseboy would follow
and peek into the keyhole. Finally, when the houseboy could no longer resist th
e urge, he climbed into the ceiling, went inside the room of his master, placed
himself on top of her and abused her, not knowing that she was already dead five
minutes earlier. Is an impossible crime committed? Yes. Before, the act perform
ed by the offender could not have been a crime against person or property. The a
ct performed would have been constituted a crime against chastity. An impossible
crime is true only if the act done by the offender constitutes a crime against
person or property. However, with the new rape law amending the Revised Penal Co
de and classifying rape as a crime against persons, it is now possible that an i
mpossible crime was committed. Note, however, that the crime might also fall und
er the Revised Administrative Code desecrating the dead. 2. A was driving his ca
r around Roxas Boulevard when a person hitched a ride. Because this person was e
xquisitely dressed, A readily welcomed the fellow inside his car and he continue
d driving. When he reached a motel, A suddenly swerved his car inside. A started
kissing his passenger, but he found out that his passenger was not a woman but
a man, and so he pushed him out of the car, and gave him fist blows. Is an impos
sible crime committed? If not, is there any crime committed at all? It cannot be
an impossible crime, because the act would have been a crime against chastity.
The crime is physical injuries or acts of lasciviousness, if this was done again
st the will of the passenger. There are two ways of committing acts of lasciviou

sness. Under Article 336, where the acts of lasciviousness were committed under
circumstances of rape, meaning to say, there is employment of violence or intimi
dation or the victim is deprived of reason. Even if the victim is a man, the cri
me of acts of lasciviousness is committed. This is a crime that is not limited t
o a victim who is a woman. Acts of lasciviousness require a victim to be a woman
only when it is committed under circumstances of seduction. If it is committed
under the circumstances of rape, the victim may be a man or a woman. The essence
of an impossible crime is the inherent impossibility of accomplishing the crime
or the inherent impossibility of the means employed to bring about the crime. W
hen we say inherent impossibility, this means that under any and all circumstanc
es, the crime could not have materialized. If the crime could have materialized
under a different set of facts, employing the same mean or the same act, it is n
ot an impossible crime; it would be an attempted felony. Under Article 4, paragr
aph 2, impossible crime is true only when the crime committed would have been ag
ainst person or against property. It is,
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therefore, important to know what are the crimes under Title VIII, against perso
ns and those against property under Title X. An impossible crime is true only to
any of those crimes. 3. A entered a department store at about midnight, when it
was already closed. He went directly to the room where the safe or vault was be
ing kept. He succeeded in opening the safe, but the safe was empty. Is an imposs
ible crime committed? If not, what crime is possibly committed? This is not an i
mpossible crime. That is only true if there is nothing more to steal. But in a d
epartment store, where there is plenty to steal, not only the money inside the v
ault or safe. The fact that the vault had turned out to be empty is not really i
nherently impossible to commit the crime of robbery. There are other things that
he could take. The crime committed therefore is attempted robbery, assuming tha
t he did not lay his hands on any other article. This could not be trespass to d
welling because there are other things that can be stolen. 4. A and B were lover
s. B was willing to marry A except that A is already married. A thought of killi
ng his wife. He prepared her breakfast every morning, and every morning, he plac
ed a little dose of arsenic poison into the breakfast of the wife. The wife cons
umed all the food prepared by her husband including the poison but nothing happe
ned to the wife. Because of the volume of the household chores that the wife had
to attend to daily, she developed a physical condition that rendered her so str
ong and resistance to any kind of poisoning, so the amount of poison applied to
her breakfast has no effect to her. Is there an impossible crime? No impossible
crime is committed because the fact itself stated that what prevented the poison
from taking effect is the physical condition of the woman. So it implies that i
f the woman was not of such physical condition, the poison would have taken effe
ct. Hence, it is not inherently impossible to realize the killing. The crime com
mitted is frustrated parricide. If it were a case of poisoning , an impossible c
rime would be constituted if a person who was thinking that it was a poison that
he was putting into the food of the intended victim but actually it was vetsin
or sugar or soda. Under any and all circumstances, the crime could not have been
realized. But if due to the quantity of vetsin or sugar or soda, the intended v
ictim developed LBM and was hospitalized, then it would not be a case of impossi
ble crime anymore. It would be a case of physical injuries, if the act done does
not amount to some other crime under the Revised Penal Code. Do not confuse an
impossible crime with the attempted or frustrated stage. 5. Scott and Charles ar
e roommate in a boarding house. Everyday, Scott leaves for work but before leavi
ng he would lock the food cabinet where he kept his food. Charles resented this.
One day, he got an electric cord tied the one end to the door knob and plugged
the other end to an
Vena V. Verga
electric outlet. The idea was that, when Scott comes home to open the door knob,
he would be electrocuted. Unknown to Charles, Scott is working in an electronic
shop where he received a daily dosage of electric shock. When Scott opened the
doorknob, nothing happened to him. He was just surprised to find out that there
was an electric cord plugged to the outlet and the other hand to the door knob.
Whether an impossible crime was committed or not? It is not an impossible crime.
The means employed is not inherently impossible to bring about the consequence
of his felonious act. What prevented the consummation of the crime was because o
f some cause independent of the will of the perpetrator. 6. A and B are enemies.
A, upon seeing B, got the revolver of his father, shot B, but the revolver did
not discharge because the bullets were old, none of them discharged. Was an impo
ssible crime committed? No. It was purely accidental that the firearm did not di
scharge because the bullets were old. If they were new, it would have fired. Tha
t is a cause other than the spontaneous desistance of the offender, and therefor
e, an attempted homicide. But if let us say, when he started squeezing the trigg
er, he did not realize that the firearm was empty. There was no bullet at all. T
here is an impossible crime, because under any and all circumstances, an unloade
d firearm will never fire. Whenever you are confronted with a problem where the
facts suggest that an impossible crime was committed, be careful about the quest

ion asked. If the question asked is: Is an impossible crime committed?, then you j
udge that question on the basis of the facts. If really the facts constitute an
impossible crime, then you suggest than an impossible crime is committed, then y
ou state the reason for the inherent impossibility. If the question asked is Is h
e liable for an impossible crime?, this is a catching question. Even though the f
acts constitute an impossible crime, if the act done by the offender constitutes
some other crimes under the Revised Penal Code, he will not be liable for an im
possible crime. He will be prosecuted for the crime constituted so far by the ac
t done by him. The reason is an offender is punished for an impossible crime jus
t to teach him a lesson because of his criminal perversity. Although objectively
, no crime is committed, but subjectively, he is a criminal. That purpose of the
law will also be served if he is prosecuted for some other crime constituted by
his acts which are also punishable under the RPC. 7. A and B are neighbors. The
y are jealous of each others social status. A thought of killing B so A climbed t
he house of B through the window and stabbed B on the heart, not knowing that B
died a few minutes ago of bangungot. Is A liable for an impossible crime?
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No. A shall be liable for qualified trespass to dwelling. Although the act done
by A against B constitutes an impossible crime, it is the principle of criminal
law that the offender shall be punished for an impossible crime only when his ac
t cannot be punished under some other provisions in the Revised Penal Code. In o
ther words, this idea of an impossible crime is a one of last resort, just to te
ach the offender a lesson because of his criminal perversity. If he could be tau
ght of the same lesson by charging him with some other crime constituted by his
act, then that will be the proper way. If you want to play safe, you state there
that although an impossible crime is constituted, yet it is a principle of crim
inal law that he will only be penalized for an impossible crime if he cannot be
punished under some other provision of the Revised Penal Code. If the question i
s Is an impossible crime is committed?, the answer is yes, because on the basis of
the facts stated, an impossible crime is committed. But to play safe, add anoth
er paragraph: However, the offender will not be prosecuted for an impossible cri
me but for _____ [state the crime]. Because it is a principle in criminal law th
at the offender can only be prosecuted for an impossible crime if his acts do no
t constitute some other crimes punishable under the Revised Penal Code. An impos
sible crime is a crime of last resort. Modified concept of impossible crime: In
a way, the concept of impossible crime has been modified by the decision of the
Supreme Court in the case of Intod v. CA, et al., 215 SCRA 52. In this case, fou
r culprits, all armed with firearms and with intent to kill, went to the intende
d victims house and after having pinpointed the latters bedroom, all four fired at
and riddled said room with bullets, thinking that the intended victim was alrea
dy there as it was about 10:00 in the evening. It so happened that the intended
victim did not come home on the evening and so was not in her bedroom at that ti
me. Eventually the culprits were prosecuted and convicted by the trial court for
attempted murder. The Court of Appeals affirmed the judgment but the Supreme Co
urt modified the same and held the petitioner liable only for the so-called impo
ssible crime. As a result, petitioneraccused was sentenced to imprisonment of on
ly six months of arresto mayor for the felonious act he committed with intent to
kill: this despite the destruction done to the intended victims house. Somehow,
the decision depreciated the seriousness of the act committed, considering the l
awlessness by which the culprits carried out the intended crime, and so some mem
bers of the bench and bar spoke out against the soundness of the ruling. Some as
ked questions: Was it really the impossibility of accomplishing the killing that
brought about its non-accomplishment? Was it not purely accidental that the int
ended victim did not come home that evening and, thus, unknown to the culprits,
she was not in her bedroom at the time it was shot and riddled with bullets? Sup
pose, instead of using firearms, the culprits set fire on the intended victims ho
use, believing she was there when in fact she was not, would the criminal liabil
ity be for an impossible crime?
Vena V. Verga
Until the Intod case, the prevailing attitude was that the provision of the Revi
sed Penal Code on impossible crime would only apply when the wrongful act, which
would have constituted a crime against persons or property, could not and did n
ot constitute another felony. Otherwise, if such act constituted any other felon
y although different from what the offender intended, the criminal liability sho
uld be for such other felony and not for an impossible crime. The attitude was s
o because Article 4 of the Code provides two situations where criminal liability
shall be incurred, to wit: Art 4. incurred: 1. Criminal liability Criminal liab
ility shall be
By any person committing a felony (delito) although the wrongful act be differen
t from that which he intended. By any person performing an act which would be an
offense against persons or property, were it not for the inherent impossibility
of its accomplishment or on account of the employment of inadequate or ineffect
ual means.

Paragraph 1 refers to a situation where the wrongful act done constituted a felo
ny although it may be different from what he intended. Paragraph 2 refers to a s
ituation where the wrongful act done did not constitute any felony, but because
the act would have given rise to a crime against persons or against property, th
e same is penalized to repress criminal tendencies to curtail their frequency. B
ecause criminal liability for impossible crime presupposes that no felony result
ed from the wrongful act done, the penalty is fixed at arresto mayor or a fine f
rom P200.00 to P500.00, depending on the social danger and degree of criminality
shown by the offender (Article 59), regardless of whether the wrongful act was an
impossible crime against persons or against property. There is no logic in appl
ying paragraph 2 of Article 4 to a situation governed by paragraph 1 of the same
Article, that is, where a felony resulted. Otherwise, a redundancy and duplicit
y would be perpetrated. In the Intod case, the wrongful acts of the culprits cau
sed destruction to the house of the intended victim; this felonious act negates
the idea of an impossible crime. But whether we agree or not, the Supreme Court
has spoken, we have to respect its ruling. NO CRIME UNLESS THERE IS A LAW PUNISH
ING IT When a person is charged in court, and the court finds that there is no l
aw applicable, the court will acquit the accused and the judge will give his opi
nion that the said act should be punished.
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Vena V. Verga
there is yet something to be performed but he was not able to perform all the ac
ts of execution due to some cause or accident other than his own spontaneous des
istance, then you have an attempted felony. You will notice that the felony begi
ns when the offender performs an overt act. Not any act will mark the beginning
of a felony, and therefore, if the act so far being done does not begin a felony
, criminal liability correspondingly does not begin. In criminal law, there is s
uch a thing as preparatory act. These acts do not give rise to criminal liabilit
Article 5 covers two situations: (1) The court cannot convict the accused becaus
e the acts do not constitute a crime. The proper judgment is acquittal, but the
court is mandated to report to the Chief Executive that said act be made subject
of penal legislation and why. Where the court finds the penalty prescribed for
the crime too harsh considering the conditions surrounding the commission of he
crime, the judge should impose the law. The most that he could do is to recommen
d to the Chief Executive to grant executive clemency.
Question & Answer A and B are husband and wife. A met C who was willing to marry
him, but he is already married. A thought of eliminating B and to poison her. S
o, he went to the drugstore and bought arsenic poison. On the way out, he met D.
D asked him who was sick in the family, A confided to D that he bought the pois
on to poison his wife in order to marry C. After that, they parted ways. D went
directly to the police and reported that A is going to kill his wife. So the pol
icemen went to As house and found A still unwrapping the arsenic poison. The poli
cemen asked A if he was planning to poison B and A said yes. Police arrested him
and charged him with attempted parricide. Is the charge correct? No. Overt act
begins when the husband mixed the poison with the food his wife is going to take
. Before this, there is no attempted stage yet. An overt act is that act which i
f allowed to continue in its natural course would definitely result into a felon
y. In the attempted stage, the definition uses the word directly. This is signific
ant. In the attempted stage, the acts so far performed may already be a crime or
it may be just an ingredient of another crime. The word "directly" emphasizes th
e requirement that the attempted felony is that which is directly linked to the
overt act performed by the offender, not the felony he has in his mind. In crimi
nal law, you are not allowed to speculate, not to imagine what crime is intended
, but apply the provisions of the law of the facts given. When a person starts e
ntering the dwelling of another, that act is already trespassing. But the act of
entering is an ingredient of robbery with force upon things. You could only hol
d him liable for attempted robbery when he has already completed all acts perfor
med by him directly leading to robbery. The act of entering alone is not yet ind
icative of robbery although that may be what he may have planned to commit. In l
aw, the attempted stage is only that overt act which is directly linked to the f
elony intended to be committed.
STAGES IN THE COMMISSION OF FELONY The classification of stages of a felony in A
rticle 6 are true only to crimes under the Revised Penal Code. This does not app
ly to crimes punished under special laws. But even certain crimes which are puni
shed under the Revised Penal Code do not admit of these stages. The purpose of c
lassifying penalties is to bring about a proportionate penalty and equitable pun
ishment. The penalties are graduated according to their degree of severity. The
stages may not apply to all kinds of felonies. There are felonies which do not a
dmit of division. Formal crimes Formal crimes are crimes which are consummated i
n one instance. For example, in oral defamation, there is no attempted oral defa
mation or frustrated oral defamation; it is always in the consummated stage. So
also, in illegal exaction under Article 213 is a crime committed when a public o

fficer who is authorized to collect taxes, licenses or impose for the government
, shall demand an amount bigger than or different from what the law authorizes h
im to collect. Under sub-paragraph a of Article 213 on Illegal exaction, the law
uses the word demanding. Mere demanding of an amount different from what the law
authorizes him to collect will already consummate a crime, whether the taxpayer
pays the amount being demanded or not. Payment of the amount being demanded is n
ot essential to the consummation of the crime. The difference between the attemp
ted stage and the frustrated stage lies on whether the offender has performed al
l the acts of execution for the accomplishment of a felony. Literally, under the
article, if the offender has performed all the acts of execution which should p
roduce the felony as a consequence but the felony was not realized, then the cri
me is already in the frustrated stage. If the offender has not yet performed all
the acts of execution
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In US v. Namaja, the accused was arrested while he was detaching some of the woo
d panels of a store. He was already able to detach two wood panels. To a layman,
the only conclusion that will come to your mind is that this fellow started to
enter the store to steal something. He would not be there just to sleep there. B
ut in criminal law, since the act of removing the panel indicates only at most t
he intention to enter. He can only be prosecuted for trespass. The removal of th
e panelling is just an attempt to trespass, not an attempt to rob. Although, Nam
aja was prosecuted for attempted robbery, the Supreme Court held it is only atte
mpted trespass because that is the crime that can be directly linked to his act
of removing the wood panel. There are some acts which are ingredients of a certa
in crime, but which are, by themselves, already criminal offenses. In abduction,
your desire may lead to acts of lasciviousness. In so far the woman being carri
ed is concerned, she may already be the victim of lascivious acts. The crime is
not attempted abduction but acts of lasciviousness. You only hold him liable for
an attempt, so far as could be reasonably linked to the overt act done by him.
Do not go far and imagine what you should do.
Vena V. Verga
felony brought about his act. What is negated is only the attempted stage, but t
here may be other felony constituting his act. Illustrations: A fired at B and B
was hit on the shoulder. But B s wound was not mortal. What A then did was to a
pproach B, and told B, Now you are dead, I will kill you. But A took pity and kept
the revolver and left. The crime committed is attempted homicide and not physic
al injuries, because there was an intention to kill. The desistance was with the
second shot and would not affect the first shot because the first shot had alre
ady hit B. The second attempt has nothing to do with the first. In another insta
nce, A has a very seductive neighbor in the person of B. A had always been looki
ng at B and had wanted to possess her but their status were not the same. One ev
ening, after A saw B at her house and thought that B was already asleep, he ente
red the house of B through the window to abuse her. He, however, found out that
B was nude, so he lost interest and left. Can a be accused of attempted rape? No
, because there was desistance, which prevented the crime from being consummated
. The attempted stage was erased because the offender desisted after having comm
enced the commission of the felony. The attempted felony is erased by desistance
because the offender spontaneously desisted from pursuing the acts of execution
. It does not mean, however, that there is no more felony committed. He may be l
iable for a consummated felony constituted by his act of trespassing. When A ent
ered the house through the window, which is not intended for entrance, it is alw
ays presumed to be against the will of the owner. If the offender proceeded to a
buse the woman, but the latter screamed, and A went out of the window again, he
could not be prosecuted for qualified trespass. Dwelling is taken as an aggravat
ing circumstance so he will be prosecuted for attempted rape aggravated by dwell
ing. In deciding whether a felony is attempted or frustrated or consummated, the
re are three criteria involved: (1) (2) (3) The manner of committing the crime;
The elements of the crime; and The nature of the crime itself.
Question & Answer A awakened one morning with a man sleeping in his sofa. Beside
the man was a bag containing picklocks and similar tools. He found out that the
man entered his sala by cutting the screen on his window. If you were to prosec
ute this fellow, for what crime are you going to prosecute him? The act done by
him of entering through an opening not intended for the purpose is only qualifie
d trespass. Qualified trespass because he did so by cutting through the screen.
There was force applied in order to enter. Other than that, under Article 304 of
the Revised Penal Code, illegal possession of picklocks and similar tools is a
crime. Thus, he can be prosecuted for two crimes: (1) qualified trespass to dwel
ling, and (2) illegal possession of picklocks and similar tools; not complex bec
ause one is not necessary means to commit the other. Desistance Desistance on th
e part of the offender negates criminal liability in the attempted stage. Desist
ance is true only in the attempted stage of the felony. If under the definition

of the felony, the act done is already in the frustrated stage, no amount of des
istance will negate criminal liability. The spontaneous desistance of the offend
er negates only the attempted stage but not necessarily all criminal liability.
Even though there was desistance on the part of the offender, if the desistance
was made when acts done by him already resulted to a felony, that offender will
still be criminally liable for the
Manner of committing a crime For example, let us take the crime of bribery. Can
the crime of frustrated bribery be committed? No. (Incidentally, the common conc
ept of bribery is that
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it is the act of one who corrupts a public officer. Actually, bribery is the cri
me of the receiver not the giver. The crime of the giver is corruption of public
official. Bribery is the crime of the public officer who in consideration of an
act having to do with his official duties would receive something, or accept an
y promise or present in consideration thereof.) The confusion arises from the fa
ct that this crime requires two to commit -- the giver and the receiver. The law
called the crime of the giver as corruption of public official and the receiver
as bribery. Giving the idea that these are independent crimes, but actually, th
ey cannot arise without the other. Hence, if only one side of the crime is prese
nt, only corruption, you cannot have a consummated corruption without the corres
ponding consummated bribery. There cannot be a consummated bribery without the c
orresponding consummated corruption. If you have bribery only, it is only possib
le in the attempted stage. If you have a corruption only, it is possible only in
the attempted stage. A corruptor gives money to a public officer for the latter
not to prosecute him. The public officer received the money but just the same,
arrested him. He received the money to have evidence of corruption. Do not think
that because the corruptor has already delivered the money, he has already perf
ormed all the acts of execution, and, therefore, the corruption is already beyon
d the attempted stage. That thinking does away with the concept of the crime tha
t it requires two to commit. The manner of committing the crime requires the mee
ting of the minds between the giver and the receiver. When the giver delivers th
e money to the supposed receiver, but there is no meeting of the minds, the only
act done by the giver is an attempt. It is not possible for him to perform all
the acts of execution because in the first place, the receiver has no intention
of being corrupted. Similarly, when a public officer demands a consideration by
official duty, the corruptor turns down the demand, there is no bribery. If the
one to whom the demand was made pretended to give, but he had reported the matte
r to higher authorities, the money was marked and this was delivered to the publ
ic officer. If the public officer was arrested, do not think that because the pu
blic officer already had the money in his possession, the crime is already frust
rated bribery, it is only attempted bribery. This is because the supposed corrup
tor has no intention to corrupt. In short, there is no meeting of the minds. On
the other hand, if there is a meeting of the minds, there is consummated bribery
or consummated corruption. This leaves out the frustrated stage because of the
manner of committing the crime. But indirect bribery is always consummated. This
is because the manner of consummating the crime does not admit of attempt or fr
ustration. You will notice that under the Revised Penal Code, when it takes two
to commit the crime, there could hardly be a frustrated stage. For instance, the
crime of adultery. There is no frustrated adultery. Only attempted or consummat
ed. This is because it requires the link of two participants. If that link is th
ere, the crime
Vena V. Verga
is consummated; if such link is absent, there is only an attempted adultery. The
re is no middle ground when the link is there and when the link is absent. There
are instances where an intended felony could already result from the acts of ex
ecution already done. Because of this, there are felonies where the offender can
only be determined to have performed all the acts of execution when the resulti
ng felony is already accomplished. Without the resulting felony, there is no way
of determining whether the offender has already performed all the acts or not.
It is in such felonies that the frustrated stage does not exist because without
the felony being accomplished, there is no way of stating that the offender has
already performed all the acts of execution. An example of this is the crime of
rape. The essence of the crime is carnal knowledge. No matter what the offender
may do to accomplish a penetration, if there was no penetration yet, it cannot b
e said that the offender has performed all the acts of execution. We can only sa
y that the offender in rape has performed all the acts of execution when he has
effected a penetration. Once there is penetration already, no matter how slight,
the offense is consummated. For this reason, rape admits only of the attempted

and consummated stages, no frustrated stage. This was the ruling in the case of
People v. Orita. In rape, it requires the connection of the offender and the off
ended party. No penetration at all, there is only an attempted stage. Slightest
penetration or slightest connection, consummated. You will notice this from the
nature of the crime requiring two participants. This is also true in the crime o
f arson. It does not admit of the frustrated stage. In arson, the moment any par
ticle of the premises intended to be burned is blackened, that is already an ind
ication that the premises have begun to burn. It does not require that the entir
e premises be burned to consummate arson. Because of that, the frustrated stage
of arson has been eased out. The reasoning is that one cannot say that the offen
der, in the crime of arson, has already performed all the acts of execution whic
h could produce the destruction of the premises through the use of fire, unless
a part of the premises has begun to burn. If it has not begun to burn, that mean
s that the offender has not yet performed all the acts of execution. On the othe
r hand, the moment it begins to burn, the crime is consummated. Actually, the fr
ustrated stage is already standing on the consummated stage except that the outc
ome did not result. As far as the stage is concerned, the frustrated stage overl
aps the consummated stage. Because of this reasoning by the Court of Appeals in
People v. Garcia, the Supreme Court followed the analysis that one cannot say th
at the offender in the crime of arson has already performed all the acts of exec
ution which would produce the arson as a consequence, unless and until a part of
the premises had begun to burn. In US v. Valdez, the offender had tried to burn
the premises by gathering jute sacks laying these inside the room. He lighted t
hese, and as soon as the jute
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sacks began to burn, he ran away. The occupants of the room put out the fire. Th
e court held that what was committed was frustrated arson. This case was much th
e way before the decision in the case of People v. Garcia was handed down and th
e Court of Appeals ruled that there is no frustrated arson. But even then, the a
nalysis in the case of US v. Valdez is correct. This is because, in determining
whether the felony is attempted, frustrated or consummated, the court does not o
nly consider the definition under Article 6 of the Revised Penal Code, or the st
ages of execution of the felony. When the offender has already passed the subjec
tive stage of the felony, it is beyond the attempted stage. It is already on the
consummated or frustrated stage depending on whether a felony resulted. If the
felony did not result, frustrated. The attempted stage is said to be within the
subjective phase of execution of a felony. On the subjective phase, it is that p
oint in time when the offender begins the commission of an overt act until that
point where he loses control of the commission of the crime already. If he has r
eached that point where he can no longer control the ensuing consequence, the cr
ime has already passed the subjective phase and, therefore, it is no longer atte
mpted. The moment the execution of the crime has already gone to that point wher
e the felony should follow as a consequence, it is either already frustrated or
consummated. If the felony does not follow as a consequence, it is already frust
rated. If the felony follows as a consequence, it is consummated. The trouble is
that, in the jurisprudence recognizing the objective phase and the subjective p
hase, the Supreme Court considered not only the acts of the offender, but also h
is belief. That although the offender may not have done the act to bring about t
he felony as a consequence, if he could have continued committing those acts but
he himself did not proceed because he believed that he had done enough to consu
mmate the crime, Supreme Court said the subjective phase has passed. This was ap
plied in the case of US v. Valdez, where the offender, having already put kerose
ne on the jute sacks, lighted the same, he had no reason not to believe that the
fire would spread, so he ran away. That act demonstrated that in his mind, he b
elieved that he has performed all the acts of execution and that it is only a ma
tter of time that the premises will burn. The fact that the occupant of the othe
r room came out and put out the fire is a cause independent of the will of the p
erpetrator. The ruling in the case of US v. Valdez is still correct. But in the
case of People v. Garcia, the situation is different. Here, the offender who put
the torch over the house of the offended party, the house being a nipa hut, the
torch which was lighted could easily burn the roof of the nipa hut. But the tor
ch burned out.
Vena V. Verga
In that case, you cannot say that the offender believed that he had performed al
l the acts of execution. There was not even a single burn of any instrument or a
gency of the crime. The analysis made by the Court of Appeals is still correct:
that they could not demonstrate a situation where the offender has performed all
the acts of execution to bring about the crime of arson and the situation where
he has not yet performed all the acts of execution. The weight of the authority
is that the crime of arson cannot be committed in the frustrated stage. The rea
son is because we can hardly determine whether the offender has performed all th
e acts of execution that would result in arson, as a consequence, unless a part
of the premises has started to burn. On the other hand, the moment a particle or
a molecule of the premises has blackened, in law, arson is consummated. This is
because consummated arson does not require that the whole of the premises be bu
rned. It is enough that any part of the premises, no matter how small, has begun
to burn. There are also certain crimes that do not admit of the attempted or fr
ustrated stage, like physical injuries. One of the known commentators in crimina
l law has advanced the view that the crime of physical injuries can be committed
in the attempted as well as the frustrated stage. He explained that by going th
rough the definition of an attempted and a frustrated felony under Article 6, if
a person who was about to give a fist blow to another raises his arms, but befo
re he could throw the blow, somebody holds that arm, there would be attempted ph

ysical injuries. The reason for this is because the offender was not able to per
form all the acts of execution to bring about physical injuries. On the other ha
nd, he also stated that the crime of physical injuries may be committed in the f
rustrated stage when the offender was able to throw the blow but somehow, the of
fended party was able to sidestep away from the blow. He reasoned out that the c
rime would be frustrated because the offender was able to perform all the acts o
f execution which would bring about the felony were it not for a cause independe
nt of the will of the perpetrator. The explanation is academic. You will notice
that under the Revised Penal Code, the crime of physical injuries is penalized o
n the basis of the gravity of the injuries. Actually, there is no simple crime o
f physical injuries. You have to categorize because there are specific articles
that apply whether the physical injuries are serious, less serious or slight. If
you say physical injuries, you do not know which article to apply. This being s
o, you could not punish the attempted or frustrated stage because you do not kno
w what crime of physical injuries was committed.
Questions & Answers 1. Is there an attempted slight physical injuries?
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If there is no result, you do not know. Criminal law cannot stand on any specula
tion or ambiguity; otherwise, the presumption of innocence would be sacrificed.
Therefore, the commentators opinion cannot stand because you cannot tell what par
ticular physical injuries was attempted or frustrated unless the consequence is
there. You cannot classify the physical injuries. 2. A threw muriatic acid on th
e face of B. The injuries would have resulted in deformity were it not for timel
y plastic surgery. After the surgery, B became more handsome. What crime is comm
itted? Is it attempted, frustrated or consummated? The crime committed here is s
erious physical injuries because of the deformity. When there is deformity, you
disregard the healing duration of the wound or the medical treatment required by
the wound. In order that in law, a deformity can be said to exist, three factor
s must concur: (1) (2) (3) The injury should bring about the ugliness; The uglin
ess must be visible; The ugliness would not disappear through natural healing pr
Vena V. Verga
If the personal property was received by the offender, this is where you have to
decide whether what was transferred to the offender is juridical possession or
physical possession only. If the offender did not receive the personal property,
but took the same from the possession of the owner without the latters consent,
then there is no problem. That cannot be estafa; this is only theft or none at a
ll. In estafa, the offender receives the property; he does not take it. But in r
eceiving the property, the recipient may be committing theft, not estafa, if wha
t was transferred to him was only the physical or material possession of the obj
ect. It can only be estafa if what was transferred to him is not only material o
r physical possession but juridical possession as well. When you are discussing
estafa, do not talk about intent to gain. In the same manner that when you are d
iscussing the crime of theft, do not talk of damage. The crime of theft is the o
ne commonly given under Article 6. This is so because the concept of theft under
the Revised Penal Code differs from the concept of larceny under American commo
n law. Under American common law, the crime of larceny which is equivalent to ou
r crime of theft here requires that the offender must be able to carry away or t
ransport the thing being stolen. Without that carrying away, the larceny cannot
be consummated. In our concept of theft, the offender need not move an inch from
where he was. It is not a matter of carrying away. It is a matter of whether he
has already acquired complete control of the personal property involved. That c
omplete control simply means that the offender has already supplanted his will f
rom the will of the possessor or owner of the personal property involved, such t
hat he could exercise his own control on the thing. Illustration: I placed a wal
let on a table inside a room. A stranger comes inside the room, gets the wallet
and puts it in his pocket. I suddenly started searching him and I found the wall
et inside his pocket. The crime of theft is already consummated because he alrea
dy acquired complete control of my wallet. This is so true when he removed the w
allet from the confines of the table. He can exercise his will over the wallet a
lready, he can drop this on the floor, etc. But as long as the wallet remains on
the table, the theft is not yet consummated; there can only be attempted or fru
strated theft. If he has started lifting the wallet, it is frustrated. If he is
in the act of trying to take the wallet or place it under, attempted. Taking in th
e concept of theft, simply means exercising control over the thing. If instead o
f the wallet, the man who entered the room pretended to carry the table out of t
he room, and the wallet is there. While taking the table out of the room, I appr
ehended him. It turned out that he is not authorized at all and is interested on
ly in the wallet, not the table. The crime is not yet consummated.
Along this concept of deformity in law, the plastic surgery applied to B is besi
de the point. In law, what is considered is not the artificial or the scientific
treatment but the natural healing of the injury. So the fact that there was pla
stic surgery applied to B does not relieve the offender from the liability for t
he physical injuries inflicted. The crime committed is serious physical injuries

. It is consummated. In determining whether a felony is attempted, frustrated or

consummated, you have to consider the manner of committing the felony, the elem
ent of the felony and the nature of the felony itself. There is no real hard and
fast rule. Elements of the crime In the crime of estafa, the element of damage
is essential before the crime could be consummated. If there is no damage, even
if the offender succeeded in carting away the personal property involved, estafa
cannot be considered as consummated. For the crime of estafa to be consummated,
there must be misappropriation already done, so that there is damage already su
ffered by the offended party. If there is no damage yet, the estafa can only be
frustrated or attempted. On the other hand, if it were a crime of theft, damage
or intent to cause damage is not an element of theft. What is necessary only is
intent to gain, not even gain is important. The mere intent to derive some profi
t is enough but the thinking must be complete before a crime of theft shall be c
onsummated. That is why we made that distinction between theft and estafa.
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It is only frustrated because as far as the table is concern, it is the confines
of this room that is the container. As long as he has not taken this table out
of the four walls of this room, the taking is not complete. A man entered a room
and found a chest on the table. He opened it found some valuables inside. He to
ok the valuables, put them in his pocket and was arrested. In this case, theft i
s consummated. But if he does not take the valuables but lifts the entire chest,
and before he could leave the room, he was apprehended, there is frustrated the
ft. If the thing is stolen from a compound or from a room, as long as the object
has not been brought out of that room, or from the perimeter of the compound, t
he crime is only frustrated. This is the confusion raised in the case of US v. D
io compared with People v. Adio and People v. Espiritu. In US v. Dio, the accused
loaded boxes of rifle on their truck. When they were on their way out of the Sou
th Harbor, they were checked at the checkpoint, so they were not able to leave t
he compound. It was held that what was committed was frustrated Theft. In People
v. Espiritu, the accused were on their way out of the supply house when they we
re apprehended by military police who found them secreting some hospital linen.
It was held that what was committed was consummated theft. The emphasis, which w
as erroneously laid in some commentaries, is that, in both cases, the offenders
were not able to pass the checkpoint. But why is it that in one, it is frustrate
d and in the other, it is consummated? In the case of US v. Dio, the boxes of rif
le were stocked file inside the compound of the South Harbor. As far as the boxe
s of rifle are concerned, it is the perimeter of the compound that is the contai
ner. As long as they were not able to bring these boxes of rifle out of the comp
ound, the taking is not complete. On the other hand, in the case of People v. Es
piritu, what were taken were hospital linens. These were taken from a warehouse.
Hospital linens were taken from boxes that were diffused or destroyed and broug
ht out of the hospital. From the moment they took it out of the boxes where the
owner or the possessor had placed it, the control is complete. You do not have t
o go out of the compound to complete the taking or the control. This is very dec
isive in the problem because in most problems given in the bar, the offender, af
ter having taken the object out of the container changed his mind and returned i
t. Is he criminally liable? Do not make a mistake by saying that there is a desi
stance. If the crime is one of theft, the moment he brought it out, it was consu
mmated. The return of the thing cannot be desistance because in criminal law, de
sistance is true only in the attempted stage. You cannot talk of desistance anym
ore when it is already in the consummated stage. If the offender has already acq
uired complete control of what he intended to take, the fact that he changed his
mind and returned the same will
Vena V. Verga
no longer affect his criminal liability. It will only affect the civil liability
of the crime because he will no longer be required to pay the object. As far as
the crime committed is concerned, the offender is criminally liable and the cri
me is consummated theft. Illustration: A and B are neighbors. One evening, A ent
ered the yard of B and opened the chicken coop where B keeps his fighting cocks.
He discovered that the fighting cocks were not physically fit for cockfighting
so he returned it. The crime is consummated theft. The will of the owner is to k
eep the fighting cock inside the chicken coop. When the offender succeeded in br
inging the cock out of the coop, it is clear that his will completely governed o
r superseded the will of the owner to keep such cock inside the chicken coop. He
nce, the crime was already consummated, and being consummated, the return of the
owners property is not desistance anymore. The offender is criminally liable but
he will not be civilly liable because the object was returned. When the recepta
cle is locked or sealed, and the offender broke the same, in lieu of theft, the
crime is robbery with force upon things. However, that the receptacle is locked
or sealed has nothing to do with the stage of the commission of the crime. It re
fers only to whether it is theft or robbery with force upon things. Nature of th
e crime itself In crimes involving the taking of human life parricide, homicide,
and murder in the definition of the frustrated stage, it is indispensable that

the victim be mortally wounded. Under the definition of the frustrated stage, to
consider the offender as having performed all the acts of execution, the acts a
lready done by him must produce or be capable of producing a felony as a consequ
ence. The general rule is that there must be a fatal injury inflicted, because i
t is only then that death will follow. If the wound is not mortal, the crime is
only attempted. The reason is that the wound inflicted is not capable of bringin
g about the desired felony of parricide, murder or homicide as a consequence; it
cannot be said that the offender has performed all the acts of execution which
would produce parricide, homicide or murder as a result. An exception to the gen
eral rule is the so-called subjective phase. The Supreme Court has decided cases
which applied the subjective standard that when the offender himself believed t
hat he had performed all the acts of execution, even though no mortal wound was
inflicted, the act is already in the frustrated stage. CONSPIRACY AND PROPOSAL T
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
Vena V. Verga
provides that a conspiracy to commit a crime is punishable only in the
which the law specifically makes them so. The information in this case
he defendants with the crime of estafa, and does not attempt to charge
the crime of conspiracy (a) But of pivotal importance perpetuators of
determining liability of

cases in
charges t
them with
crime in

Two ways for conspiracy to exist: (1) (2) There is an agreement. The participant
s acted in concert or simultaneously which is indicative of a meeting of the min
ds towards a common criminal goal or criminal objective. When several offenders
act in a synchronized, coordinated manner, the fact that their acts complimented
each other is indicative of the meeting of the minds. There is an implied agree
PEOPLE vs. PERALTA Facts: The accused were OXO members and were charged for mult
iple murder for killing three members/sympathizers of the Sigue-Sigue gang durin
g a prison riot. The prison riot was an offshoot of the long standing clashes be
tween the warring groups. Sigue-sigues members are predominantly Tagalogs while O
XOs members came from Visayas and Mindanao: Issue: W/N there is conspiracy in thi
s case Decision: A conspiracy exists when two or more persons come to an agreeme
nt concerning the commission of a felony and decide to commit it. Generally, con
spiracy is not a crime except when the law specifically provides for a penalty t
herefore as in treason, rebellion and sedition. The crime of conspiracy known to
the common law is not an indictable offense in the Philippines. An agreement to
commit a crime is a reprehensible act from the viewpoint of morality, but as lo
ng as the conspirators do not perform overt acts in furtherance of their malevol
ent design, the sovereignty of the State is not outraged and the tranquility of
the public remains undisturbed. However, when in resolute execution of a common
scheme, a felony is committed by two or more malefactors, the existence of consp
iracy assumes pivotal importance in the determination of liability of the perpet
rators. Exception: As provided by Law 2. conspiracies punished by RPC (a) conspi
racy to commit treason (Art 115) (b) conspiracy to commit rebellion (Art 136) (c
) conspiracy to commit sedition (Art 141) 3. Proposals punished in the code (a)
proposal to commit treason (Art 115) (b) Proposal to commit rebellion (Art 136)
4. conspiracies punished by special laws (a) commonwealth act no 616 sec. 5 (b)
RA 1700 II.
Two kinds of conspiracy: (1) (2) Conspiracy as a crime; and Conspiracy as a mann
er of incurring criminal liability
When conspiracy itself is a crime, no overt act is necessary to bring about the
criminal liability. The mere conspiracy is the crime itself. This is only true w
hen the law expressly punishes the mere conspiracy; otherwise, the conspiracy do
es not bring about the commission of the crime because conspiracy is not an over
t act but a mere preparatory act. Treason, rebellion, sedition, and coup detat ar
e the only crimes where the conspiracy and proposal to commit to them are punish
General Rule: conspiracies and proposals to commit a felony are not punishable N
ot indictable in the Philippines
US vs. LIM BUANCO Facts: Defendants are being accused of estafa for defrauding E
l Banco EspanolFilipino. Lim Buanco had an account with the said bank and drew l
arge sums of money therefrom by means of checks that were signed by him and endo
rsed by Reyes. However, conspiracy existed between the defendants for the withdr

awal of funds from the bank regardless of whether Lim Baunco had funds in the ba
nk to his credit or not. Reyes manipulated the books as to make them show an app
arent credit when in fact Lim Buanco was owing the bank a large sum of money. Is
sue: W/N the defendants should be charged with conspiracy or estafa. Decision: U
nder the common law, a combination of two or more persons to do an unlawful act
by lawful means, or a lawful act by unlawful means, to the prejudice of an indiv
idual or public is a distinct offense. The Penal code defines certain acts as co
nspiracies and makes them punishable. Article 4 of the Penal code says that ther
e is a conspiracy when two or more persons act together for the commission of a
crime, and decide to commit it. The crime of conspiracy as known to the common l
aw does not exist under the system embodied in the Spanish Penal Code, which def
ines certain specific acts as conspiracies, and
A. B. C.
Trade (Art 186) Brigandage (Art 306) Certain violations of the dangerous drugs a
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Vena V. Verga
an agreement concerning the commission of a felony and decide to commit it. The
objective then on the part of the conspirators is to perform an act or omission
punishable by law. What is required is assent to the perpetration of such a mis
deed. That must be their intent. There is need in the language of Justice Mapa i
n the early leading case of United States v. Magcomot, a 1909 decision, for con
currence of wills or unity of action and purpose. The usual phraseology employ
ed in many of the later cases is common and joint purpose and design. Thus a co
nspiracy need not be proved be direct evidence; it may be deduced from the mode
and manner in which the offense was perpetrated. The conditions attending its co
mmission and the acts executed may be indicative of a common design to accomplis
h a criminal purpose and objective. If such be the case then, the act of one is
the act of all the others involved and each is to be held to the same degree of
liability as the others.
US vs. GLORIA Facts: Gloria was an unsuccessful candidate for election as presid
ent of his town. Upon filing a protest, he approached the treasurer of said trea
surer of said province, a member of said board, and offered and promised to give
him the sum of 200 pesos if he would "lend his aid and support to the said prot
est. Defendant was charged with attempt" to commit the crime of bribery Issue: W/N
the act is punishable by the RPC. Decision: It is urged that the said offer was
a mere proposal to commit a crime, and that under the provisions of article 4 s
uch proposals can only be punished in cases where specific authority therefor is
to be found in the Penal Code, and that there is nothing in said code which pen
alizes a proposal to commit the crime of bribery. In the case in question the pr
oposal was in fact an "attempt" as defined in article 3 of said code, wherein it
is said that "there is an attempt when the guilty person makes a beginning in t
he commission of a crime by direct, overt acts and does not perform all of the a
cts of execution which constitute the crime, by reason of some cause or action o
ther than his own voluntary desistance;" the accused, having made an offer of mo
ney for the purpose of bribery, can not be said to have made a mere proposition,
as the offer of money is an overt act in a crime of this nature, and its refusa
l on the part of the official whom it was proposed to bribe alone prevented the
consummation of the crime. IV. ELEMENTS OF CONSPIRACY
A. B. C.
Two or more persons come to an agreement (US vs. Villarino) Agreement concerns c
ommission of felony (US vs. Figueras) They decide to commit it. ELEMENTS OF PROP
OSAL A person has decided to commit a crime He proposes its commission to anothe
r 1. if proposal is accepted, there is a conspiracy CONSPIRACY TO COMMIT A CRIME
A. B.
Note: When conspiracy relates to crime actually committed, not a felony but only
a means of incurring criminal liability. VII.
A. B.
LIABILITY OF CONSPIRATOR determination to commit felony taking part in every det
ail is not essential

PEOPLE vs. CABILING Facts: The victim was a driver of a truck that was to delive
r a truckload of rice to Manila. Their truck broke down while in the highway cau
sing them to stop. Suddenly, three men, who previously had a confrontation with
one the truck passengers, came and attacked the persons inside the truck killing
the victim. Guido died from traumatic injuries in the head. Cabiling contends t
hat he could not have killed Guido since he was not the one with the lead pipe.
Issue: W/N Cabiling is as guilty as his other companions for the murder of Guido
. Decision: Yes. It is not essential that each conspirator shall take part in ev
ery act, or that one should know the exact part to be performed by the other con
spirator in the execution of the conspiracy. Conspiracy implies concert of
PEOPLE vs. OGAPAY Facts: The defendants was said to have conspired to kill Ogapa
y, the godson of one of the defendants. A conflict arose between the victim and
one of the defendants when the former accused the latter of land-grabbing lands
owned by the formers grandfather. Moreover, the victim did not support the defend
ant during the elections. Thus the defendant, with several others had the victim
killed. Issue: W/N there is conspiracy in the case at bar. Decision: There is n
o conspiracy in this case. According to People v. Malilay and People v. Pudpud :
"A conspiracy exists when two or more persons come to
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design and not participation in every detail of execution. If it is proved that
two or more persons aimed, by their acts, at the accomplishment of some unlawful
object, each doing a part so that their acts, through apparently, were in fact
connected and cooperative, indicating a closeness of personal association and a
concurrence of sentiments, conspiracy may be inferred although no actual meeting
between them to conspire is proved, for the prosecution need not establish that
all the parties thereto agreed to every detail in the execution of the crime or
that they were actually together at all stages of the conspiracy. It is enough
that from the individual acts of each accused, it may be reasonably deduced that
they had a common plan to commit the felony. Every one of the conspirators who
took active part in its execution is therefore responsible for all he acts of th
e others done in the furtherance of the common design.
Vena V. Verga
and although he did not directly participate in the robbery he gave moral encour
agement to them with his presence and shared in the loot in the amount of Php .5
0, he should be criminally responsible as an accomplice for the crime of robbery
. An accomplice is one who cooperates in the execution of the crime by previous
or simultaneous acts, provided that he has not taken direct part in the executio
n of the crime or forced or induced others to execute it, or cooperated in its p
erpetuation by an indispensable act. PEOPLE vs. QUINTO Facts: The defendants wer
e charged of murder for hitting and inflicting upon the vital parts of Patrolman
Butawas body mortal gunshot wounds, which caused his untimely death. It was said
that Quinto and his companions, who were at that time already drunk, had a heat
ed encounter with the victims in topside caf. However, the prosecution was not ab
le to establish whether it was really the defendant who killed the victim. Issue
: W/N Quinto should be acquitted Decision: It is significant that in the instant
case, there is no evidence tending to show conspiracy. In the absence of conspi
racy, it is necessary to prove who shot and killed the victim, as mere Presence
of the accused at the scene of the crime, in the company of others, among whom c
ould have been the culprits, does not establish criminal liability. It is settle
d that where conspiracy is absent, each of the accused is responsible only for t
he consequences of his own act. In the instant case, the nature and extent of ap
pellant s participation, if any, in the acts leading to the commission of the fe
lony has not been established by the evidence for the prosecution. Quintos guilt
was not proved beyond reasonable doubt thus he was acquitted.
C. D. E.
Conspirators need not all join in the agreement at the same time Collective crim
inal responsibility: Act of one, act of all (People vs. Alonzo) Solidary indemni
gree of proof required to establish crime 1. Mere companionship does not establi
sh conspiracy 2. Mere presence at crime scene does not establish conspiracy Posi
tive and convincing Founded on facts and not mere conjectures, inferences presum
ptions LIABILITY IN ABSENCE OF CONSPIRACY Individual liability
A. B. C.
PEOPLE vs. TOLING Facts: The defendants were all found guilty for the crime of R
obbery in Band with Homicide. Toling an Bolando robbed a certain Francisco Lumpa
yao. Upon seeing this, Francisco shouted for help. The victim went to Franciscos
house. Upon seeing Isabelo, Toling shot Isabelo thereby killing him. Bolando con

tends that he did not know of Tolings plan till they were in the barrio. He only
joined them because of the Php .50 share in the loot that was promised to him.
Issue: W/N Bolando is as guilty as the other defendants Decision: Conspiracy not
having been established, the criminal responsibility of several accused is indi
vidual. Conspiracy is not proven in this case because it does not appear that th
e appellants had a common design. According to Bolando, he went along with Tolin
g because he was afraid to displease the latter and he only learned of their pur
pose on their way. Considering that Bolando after knowing that thy were to rob s
omeone still went with them to the Barrio,
Question & Answer Union A proposed acts of sedition to Union B. Is there a crime
committed? Assuming Union B accepts the proposal, will your answer be different
? There is no crime committed. Proposal to commit sedition is not a crime. But i
f Union B accepts the proposal, there will be conspiracy to commit sedition whic
h is a crime under the Revised Penal Code. When the conspiracy is only a basis o
f incurring criminal liability, there must be an overt act done before the co-co
nspirators become criminally liable.
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When the conspiracy itself is a crime, this cannot be inferred or deduced becaus
e there is no overt act. All that there is the agreement. On the other hand, if
the co-conspirator or any of them would execute an overt act, the crime would no
longer be the conspiracy but the overt act itself. Illustration: A, B, C and D
came to an agreement to commit rebellion. Their agreement was to bring about the
rebellion on a certain date. Even if none of them has performed the act of rebe
llion, there is already criminal liability arising from the conspiracy to commit
the rebellion. But if anyone of them has committed the overt act of rebellion,
the crime of all is no longer conspiracy to commit rebellion but rebellion itsel
f. This subsists even though the other co-conspirator does not know that one of
them had already done the act of rebellion. This legal consequence is not true i
f the conspiracy is not a crime. If the conspiracy is only a basis of criminal l
iability, none of the co-conspirators would be liable, unless there is an overt
act. So, for as long as anyone shall desist before an overt act in furtherance o
f the crime was committed, such a desistance would negate criminal liability. Il
lustration: Three persons plan to rob a bank. For as long as none of the conspir
ators has committed an overt act, there is no crime yet. But when one of them co
mmits any overt act, all of them shall be held liable, unless a co-conspirator w
as absent from the scene of the crime or he showed up, but he tried to prevent t
he commission of the crime As a general rule, if there has been a conspiracy to
commit a crime in a particular place, anyone who did not appear shall be presume
d to have desisted. The exception to this is if such person who did not appear w
as the mastermind. We have to observe the distinction between the two because co
nspiracy as a crime, must have a clear and convincing evidence of its existence.
Every crime must be proved beyond reasonable doubt. When the conspiracy is just
a basis of incurring criminal liability, however, the same may be deduced or in
ferred from the acts of several offenders in carrying out the commission of the
crime. The existence of a conspiracy may be reasonably inferred from the acts of
the offenders when such acts disclose or show a common pursuit of the criminal
objective. This was the ruling in People v. Pinto, 204 SCRA 9. Although conspira
cy is defined as two or more person coming to an agreement regarding the commiss
ion of a felony and deciding to commit it, the word person here should not be unde
rstood to require a meeting of the coconspirator regarding the commission of the
felony. A conspiracy of the second
Vena V. Verga
kind can be inferred or deduced even though they have not met as long as they ac
ted in concert or simultaneously, indicative of a meeting of the minds toward a
common goal or objective. Conspiracy is a matter of substance which must be alle
ged in the information, otherwise, the court will not consider the same. In Peop
le v. Laurio, 200 SCRA 489, it was held that it must be established by positive
and conclusive evidence, not by conjectures or speculations. In Taer v. CA, 186
SCRA 5980, it was held that mere knowledge, acquiescence to, or approval of the
act, without cooperation or at least, agreement to cooperate, is not enough to c
onstitute a conspiracy. There must be an intentional participation in the crime
with a view to further the common felonious objective. When several persons who
do not know each other simultaneously attack the victim, the act of one is the a
ct of all, regardless of the degree of injury inflicted by any one of them. All
will be liable for the consequences. A conspiracy is possible even when particip
ants are not known to each other. Do not think that participants are always know
n to each other. Illustrations: A thought of having her husband killed because t
he latter was maltreating her. She hired some persons to kill him and pointed at
her husband. The goons got hold of her husband and started mauling him. The wif
e took pity and shouted for them to stop but the goons continued. The wife ran a
way. The wife was prosecuted for parricide. But the Supreme Court said that ther
e was desistance so she is not criminally liable. A law student resented the fac
t that his brother was killed by A. He hired B to kill A and offered him P50,000
.00. He disclosed to B that A was being arraigned in the City Hall of Manila and
told him to execute the plan on the following day. In the evening of that same

day, the law student changed his mind so he immediately went to the police and t
old them to dispatch police officers to prevent B from committing the crime. Unf
ortunately, the police were caught in traffic causing their delay, so that when
they reached the place, B had already killed A. In this case, there was no propo
sal but a conspiracy. They have conspired to execute a crime but the crime invol
ved here is murder and a conspiracy to commit murder is not a crime in itself bu
t merely a basis for incurring criminal liability. This is just a preparatory ac
t, and his desistance negates criminal liability. Proposal is true only up to th
e point where the party to whom the proposal was made has not yet accepted the p
roposal. Once the proposal was accepted, a conspiracy arises. Proposal is unilat
eral, one party makes a proposition to the other; conspiracy is bilateral, it re
quires two parties.
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As pointed out earlier, desistance is true only in the attempted stage. Before t
his stage, there is only a preparatory stage. Conspiracy is only in the preparat
ory stage. The Supreme Court has ruled that one who desisted is not criminally l
iable. When a person has set foot to the path of wickedness and brings back his f
oot to the path of righteousness, the law shall reward him for doing so. Where th
ere are several persons who participated, like in a killing, and they attacked t
he victim simultaneously, so much so that it cannot be known what participation
each one had, all these participants shall be considered as having acted in cons
piracy and they will be held collectively responsible. Do not search for an agre
ement among the participants. If they acted simultaneously to bring about their
common intention, conspiracy exists. And when conspiracy exists, do not consider
the degree of participation of each conspirator because the act of one is the a
ct of all. As a general rule, they have equal criminal responsibility. Question
& Answer There are several offenders who acted simultaneously. When they fled, a
victim was found dead. Who should be liable for the killing if who actually kil
led the victim is not known? There is collective responsibility here. Without th
e principle of conspiracy, nobody would be prosecuted; hence, there is the rule
on collective responsibility since it cannot be ascertained who actually killed
the victim. There is conspiracy when the offenders acted simultaneously pursuing
a common criminal design; thus, acting out a common criminal intent. Illustrati
on: A, B and C have been courting the same lady for several years. On several oc
casions, they even visited the lady on intervening hours. Because of this, A, B
and C became hostile with one another. One day, D invited the young lady and she
accepted the invitation. Eventually, the young lady agreed to marry D. When A,
B and C learned about this, they all stood up to leave the house of the young la
dy feeling disappointed. When A looked back at the young lady with D, he saw D l
aughing menacingly. At that instance, A stabbed D. C and B followed. In this cas
e, it was held that conspiracy was present. The common notion is that when there
is conspiracy involved, the participants are punished as principals. This notio
n is no longer absolute. In the case of People v. Nierra, the Supreme Court rule
d that even though there was conspiracy, if a co-conspirator merely cooperated i
n the commission of the crime with insignificant or minimal acts, such that even
without his cooperation,
Vena V. Verga
the crime could be carried out as well, such co-conspirator should be punished a
s an accomplice only. The reason given is that penal laws always favor a milder
form of responsibility upon an offender. So it is no longer accurate to think th
at when there is a conspiracy, all are principals. Notwithstanding that there is
conspiracy, a co-conspirator may be held liable only as an accomplice. That mea
ns the penalty which shall be imposed upon him is one degree lower. For example,
there was a planned robbery, and the taxi driver was present during the plannin
g. There, the conspirators told the taxi driver that they are going to use his t
axicab in going to the place of robbery. The taxi driver agreed but said, I will
bring you there, and after committing the robbery I will return later. The taxi d
river brought the conspirators where the robbery would be committed. After the r
obbery was finished, he took the conspirators back to his taxi and brought them
away. It was held that the taxi driver was liable only as an accomplice. His coo
peration was not really indispensable. The robbers could have engaged another ta
xi. The taxi driver did not really stay during the commission of the robbery. At
most, what he only extended was his cooperation. That is why he was given only
that penalty for an accomplice. A, B, and C, under the influence of marijuana, b
roke into a house because they learned that the occupants have gone on an excurs
ion. They ransacked the house. A got a colored TV, B saw a camera and took that,
and C found a can of salmon and took that. In the crime of robbery with force u
pon things, the penalty is based on the totality of the value of the personal pr
operty taken and not on the individual property taken by him. In Siton v. CA, it
was held that the idea of a conspiracy is incompatible with the idea of a free
for all. There is no definite opponent or definite intent as when a basketball c

rowd beats a referee to death. Composite crimes Composite crimes are crimes whic
h, in substance, consist of more than one crime but in the eyes of the law, ther
e is only one crime. For example, the crimes of robbery with homicide, robbery w
ith rape, robbery with physical injuries. In case the crime committed is a compo
site crime, the conspirator will be liable for all the acts committed during the
commission of the crime agreed upon. This is because, in the eyes of the law, a
ll those acts done in pursuance of the crime agreed upon are acts which constitu
te a single crime. Illustrations: A, B, and C decided to commit robbery in the h
ouse of D. Pursuant to their agreement, A would ransack the second floor, B was
to wait outside, and C would stay on the first floor. Unknown to B and C, A rape
d the girl upstairs. All
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of them will be liable for robbery with rape. The crime committed is robbery wit
h rape, which is not a complex crime, but an indivisible felony under the Articl
e 294 of the Revised Penal Code. Even if B and C did not know that rape was bein
g committed and they agreed only and conspired to rob, yet rape was part of robb
ery. Rape can not be separated from robbery. A, B and C agreed to rob the house
of D. It was agreed that A would go the second floor, B would stay in the first
floor, and C stands guard outside. All went to their designated areas in pursuit
of the plan. While A was ransacking the second floor, the owner was awakened. A
killed him. A, B and C will be liable for robbery with homicide. This is becaus
e, it is well settled that any killing taking place while robbery is being commi
tted shall be treated as a single indivisible offense. As a general rule, when t
here is conspiracy, the rule is that the act of one is the act of all. This prin
ciple applies only to the crime agreed upon. The exception is if any of the co-c
onspirator would commit a crime not agreed upon. This happens when the crime agr
eed upon and the crime committed by one of the co-conspirators are distinct crim
es. Exception to the exception: In acts constituting a single indivisible offens
e, even though the co-conspirator performed different acts bringing about the co
mposite crime, all will be liable for such crime. They can only evade responsibi
lity for any other crime outside of that agreed upon if it is proved that the pa
rticular conspirator had tried to prevent the commission of such other act. The
rule would be different if the crime committed was not a composite crime. Illust
ration: A, B and C agreed to kill D. When they saw the opportunity, A, B and C k
illed D and after that, A and B ran into different directions. C inspected the p
ocket of the victim and found that the victim was wearing a ring a diamond ring
and he took it. The crimes committed are homicide and theft. As far as the homic
ide is concerned, A, B and C are liable because that was agreed upon and theft w
as not an integral part of homicide. This is a distinct crime so the rule will n
ot apply because it was not the crime agreed upon. Insofar as the crime of theft
is concerned, C will be the only one liable. So C will be liable for homicide a
nd theft. (3)
Vena V. Verga
What the examiner had in mind was Articles 3, 6 and 9. Do not write classificati
on of felonies under Book 2 of the Revised Penal Code. That was what the examine
r had in mind because the question does not require candidate to classify but al
so to define. Therefore, the examiner was after classifications under Articles 3
, 6 and 9. Felonies are classified as follows: (1) According to the manner of th
eir commission Under Article 3, they are classified as, intentional felonies or
those committed with deliberate intent; and culpable felonies or those resulting
from negligence, reckless imprudence, lack of foresight or lack of skill. (2) A
ccording to the stages of their execution Under Article 6., felonies are classif
ied as attempted felony when the offender commences the commission of a felony d
irectly by overt acts, and does not perform all the acts of execution which shou
ld produce the felony by reason of some cause or accident other than his own spo
ntaneous desistance; frustrated felony when the offender commences the commissio
n of a felony as a consequence but which would produce the felony as a consequen
ce but which nevertheless do not produce the felony by reason of causes independ
ent of the perpetrator; and, consummated felony when all the elements necessary
for its execution are present. According to their gravity Under Article 9, felon
ies are classified as grave felonies or those to which attaches the capital puni
shment or penalties which in any of their periods are afflictive; less grave fel
onies or those to which the law punishes with penalties which in their maximum p
eriod was correccional; and light felonies or those infractions of law for the c
ommission of which the penalty is arresto menor. Why is it necessary to determin
e whether the crime is grave, less grave or light? To determine whether these fe
lonies can be complexed or not, and to determine the prescription of the crime a
nd the prescription of the penalty. In other words, these are felonies classifie
d according to their gravity, stages and the penalty attached to them. Take note
that when the Revised Penal Code speaks of grave and less grave felonies, the d

efinition makes a reference specifically to Article 25 of the Revised Penal Code

. Do not omit the phrase In accordance with Article 25 because there is also a cla
ssification of penalties under Article 26 that was not applied. the not the the
CLASSIFICATION OF FELONIES This question was asked in the bar examination: How d
o you classify felonies or how are felonies classified?
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If the penalty is fine and exactly P200.00, it is only considered a light felony
under Article 9. If the fine is imposed as an alternative penalty or as a singl
e penalty, the fine of P200.00 is considered a correctional penalty under Articl
e 26. If the penalty is exactly P200.00, apply Article 26. It is considered as c
orrectional penalty and it prescribes in 10 years. If the offender is apprehende
d at any time within ten years, he can be made to suffer the fine. This classifi
cation of felony according to gravity is important with respect to the question
of prescription of crimes. In the case of light felonies, crimes prescribe in tw
o months. After two months, the state loses the right to prosecute unless the ru
nning period is suspended. If the offender escapes while in detention after he h
as been loose, if there was already judgment that was passed, it can be promulga
ted even if absent under the New Rules on Criminal Procedure. If the crime is co
rrectional, it prescribes in ten years, except arresto mayor, which prescribes i
consequence of the legal requirement that you have to distinguish those punishe
d under special laws and those under the Revised Penal Code. With regard to Arti
cle 10, observe the distinction. In Article 10, there is a reservation provision
of the Revised Penal Code may be applied suppletorily to special laws. You will o
nly apply the provisions of the Revised Penal Code as a supplement to the specia
l law, or simply correlate the violated special law, if needed to avoid an injus
tice. If no justice would result, do not give suppletorily application of the Re
vised Penal Code to that of special law. For example, a special law punishes a c
ertain act as a crime. The special law is silent as to the civil liability of on
e who violates the same. Here is a person who violated the special law and he wa
s prosecuted. His violation caused damage or injury to a private party. May the
court pronounce that he is civilly liable to the offended party, considering tha
t the special law is silent on this point? Yes, because Article 100 of the Revis
ed Penal Code may be given suppletory application to prevent an injustice from b
eing done to the offended party. Article 100 states that every person criminally
liable for a felony is also civilly liable. That article shall be applied suppl
etory to avoid an injustice that would be caused to the private offended party,
if he would not be indemnified for the damages or injuries sustained by him. In
People v. Rodriguez, it was held that the use of arms is an element of rebellion
, so a rebel cannot be further prosecuted for possession of firearms. A violatio
n of a special law can never absorb a crime punishable under the
Vena V. Verga
Revised Penal Code, because violations of the Revised Penal Code are more seriou
s than a violation of a special law. But a crime in the Revised Penal Code can a
bsorb a crime punishable by a special law if it is a necessary ingredient of the
crime in the Revised Penal Code. In the crime of sedition, the use of firearms
is not an ingredient of the crime. Hence, two prosecutions can be had: (1) sedit
ion; and (2) illegal possession of firearms. But do not think that when a crime
is punished outside of the Revised Penal Code, it is already a special law. For
example, the crime of cattle-rustling is not a mala prohibitum but a modificatio
n of the crime theft of large cattle. So Presidential Decree No. 533, punishing
cattle-rustling, is not a special law. It can absorb the crime of murder. If in
the course of cattle rustling, murder was committed, the offender cannot be pros
ecuted for murder. Murder would be a qualifying circumstance in the crime of qua
lified cattle rustling. Thias was the ruling in People v. Martinada. The amendme
nts of Presidential Decree No. 6425 (The Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972) by Republi
c Act No. 7659, which adopted the scale of penalties in the Revised Penal Code,
means that mitigating and aggravating circumstances can now be considered in imp
osing penalties. Presidential Decree No. 6425 does not expressly prohibit the su
ppletory application of the Revised Penal Code. The stages of the commission of
felonies will also apply since suppletory application is now allowed. Circumstan
ces affecting criminal liability There are five circumstances affecting criminal
liability: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) Justifying circumstances; Exempting circumstance
s; Mitigating circumstances; Aggravating circumstances; and Alternative circumst

There are two others which are found elsewhere in the provisions of the Revised
Penal Code: (1) (2) Absolutory cause; and Extenuating circumstances.
In justifying and exempting circumstances, there is no criminal liability. When
an accused invokes them, he in effect admits the commission of a crime but
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tries to avoid the liability thereof. The burden is upon him to establish beyond
reasonable doubt the required conditions to justify or exempt his acts from cri
minal liability. What is shifted is only the burden of evidence, not the burden
of proof. Justifying circumstances contemplate intentional acts and, hence, are
incompatible with dolo. Exempting circumstances may be invoked in culpable felon
ies. Absolutory cause The effect of this is to absolve the offender from crimina
l liability, although not from civil liability. It has the same effect as an exe
mpting circumstance, but you do not call it as such in order not to confuse it w
ith the circumstances under Article 12. Article 20 provides that the penalties p
rescribed for accessories shall not be imposed upon those who are such with resp
ect to their spouses, ascendants, descendants, legitimate, natural and adopted b
rothers and sisters, or relatives by affinity within the same degrees with the e
xception of accessories who profited themselves or assisting the offender to pro
fit by the effects of the crime. Then, Article 89 provides how criminal liabilit
y is extinguished: Death of the convict as to the personal penalties, and as to
pecuniary penalties, liability therefor is extinguished if death occurs before f
inal judgment; Service of the sentence; Amnesty; Absolute pardon; Prescription o
f the crime; Prescription of the penalty; and Marriage of the offended woman as
provided in Article 344. Under Article 247, a legally married person who kills o
r inflicts physical injuries upon his or her spouse whom he surprised having sex
ual intercourse with his or her paramour or mistress in not criminally liable. U
nder Article 219, discovering secrets through seizure of correspondence of the w
ard by their guardian is not penalized. Under Article 332, in the case of theft,
swindling and malicious mischief, there is no criminal liability but only civil
liability, when the offender and the offended
Vena V. Verga
party are related as spouse, ascendant, descendant, brother and sister-in-law li
ving together or where in case the widowed spouse and the property involved is t
hat of the deceased spouse, before such property had passed on to the possession
of third parties. Under Article 344, in cases of seduction, abduction, acts of
lasciviousness, and rape, the marriage of the offended party shall extinguish th
e criminal action. Absolutory cause has the effect of an exempting circumstance
and they are predicated on lack of voluntariness like instigation. Instigation i
s associated with criminal intent. Do not consider culpa in connection with inst
igation. If the crime is culpable, do not talk of instigation. In instigation, t
he crime is committed with dolo. It is confused with entrapment. Entrapment is n
ot an absolutory cause. Entrapment does not exempt the offender or mitigate his
criminal liability. But instigation absolves the offender from criminal liabilit
y because in instigation, the offender simply acts as a tool of the law enforcer
s and, therefore, he is acting without criminal intent because without the insti
gation, he would not have done the criminal act which he did upon instigation of
the law enforcers. Difference between instigation and entrapment In instigation
, the criminal plan or design exists in the mind of the law enforcer with whom t
he person instigated cooperated so it is said that the person instigated is acti
ng only as a mere instrument or tool of the law enforcer in the performance of h
is duties. On the other hand, in entrapment, a criminal design is already in the
mind of the person entrapped. It did not emanate from the mind of the law enfor
cer entrapping him. Entrapment involves only ways and means which are laid down
or resorted to facilitate the apprehension of the culprit. Illustrations: An age
nt of the narcotics command had been tipped off that a certain house is being us
ed as an opium den by prominent members of the society. The law enforcers cannot
themselves penetrate the house because they do not belong to that circle so wha
t they did was to convince a prominent member of society to visit such house to
find out what is really happening inside and that so many cars were congregating
there. The law enforcers told the undercover man that if he is offered a cigare
tte, then he should try it to find out whether it is loaded with dangerous drugs
or not. This fellow went to the place and mingled there. The time came when he
was offered a stick of cigarette and he tried it to see if the cigarette would a

ffect him. Unfortunately, the raid was conducted and he was among those prosecut
ed for violation of the Dangerous Drugs Act. Is he criminally liable? No. He was
only there upon instigation of the law enforcers. On his own, he would not be t
here. The reason he is there is because he cooperated with the law enforcers. Th
ere is absence of criminal intent.
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Vena V. Verga
a citizen who only cooperated with the law enforcer. The private citizen believe
s that he is a law enforcer and that is why when the law enforcer tells him, he
believes that it is a civil duty to cooperate. If the person instigated does not
know that the person is instigating him is a law enforcer or he knows him to be
not a law enforcer, this is not a case of instigation. This is a case of induce
ment, both will be criminally liable. In entrapment, the person entrapped should
not know that the person trying to entrap him was a law enforcer. The idea is i
ncompatible with each other because in entrapment, the person entrapped is actua
lly committing a crime. The officer who entrapped him only lays down ways and me
ans to have evidence of the commission of the crime, but even without those ways
and means, the person entrapped is actually engaged in a violation of the law.
Instigation absolves the person instigated from criminal liability. This is base
d on the rule that a person cannot be a criminal if his mind is not criminal. On
the other hand, entrapment is not an absolutory cause. It is not even mitigatin
g. In case of somnambulism or one who acts while sleeping, the person involved i
s definitely acting without freedom and without sufficient intelligence, because
he is asleep. He is moving like a robot, unaware of what he is doing. So the el
ement of voluntariness which is necessary in dolo and culpa is not present. Somn
ambulism is an absolutory cause. If element of voluntariness is absent, there is
no criminal liability, although there is civil liability, and if the circumstan
ce is not among those enumerated in Article 12, refer to the circumstance as an
absolutory cause. Mistake of fact is not absolutory cause. The offender is actin
g without criminal intent. So in mistake of fact, it is necessary that had the f
acts been true as the accused believed them to be, this act is justified. If not
, there is criminal liability, because there is no mistake of fact anymore. The
offender must believe he is performing a lawful act. Extenuating circumstances T
he effect of this is to mitigate the criminal liability of the offender. In othe
r words, this has the same effect as mitigating circumstances, only you do not c
all it mitigating because this is not found in Article 13. Illustrations: An unw
ed mother killed her child in order to conceal a dishonor. The concealment of di
shonor is an extenuating circumstance insofar as the unwed mother or the materna
l grandparents is concerned, but not insofar as the father of the child is conce
rned. Mother killing her new born child to conceal her dishonor, penalty is lowe
red by two degrees. Since there is a material
If the law enforcer were able to enter the house and mingle there, nobody would
offer him a cigarette because he is unknown. When he saw somebody, he pleaded to
spare him a smoke so this fellow handed to him the cigarette he was smoking and
found out that it was loaded with a dangerous drug. He arrested the fellow. Def
ense was that he would not give a cigarette if he was not asked. Is he criminall
y liable? Yes. This is a case of entrapment and not instigation. Even if the law
enforcer did not ask for a cigarette, the offender was already committing a cri
me. The law enforcer ascertained if it is a violation of the Dangerous Drugs Act
. The means employed by the law enforcer did not make the accused commit a crime
. Entrapment is not an absolutory cause because in entrapment, the offender is a
lready committing a crime. In another instance, a law enforcer pretended to be a
buyer of marijuana. He approached a person suspected to be a pusher and prevail
ed upon this person to sell him two kilos of dried marijuana leaves and this fel
low gave him and delivered them. He apprehended the fellow. Defense is instigati
on, because he would not have come out for the marijuana leaves if the law enfor
cer had not instigated him. It is a case of entrapment because the fellow is alr
eady committing the crime from the mere fact that he is possessing marijuana. Ev
en without selling, there is a crime committed by him: illegal possession of dan
gerous drugs. How can one sell marijuana if he is not in possession thereof. The
law enforcer is only ascertaining if this fellow is selling marijuana leaves, s
o this is entrapment, not instigation. Selling is not necessary to commit the cr
ime, mere possession is already a crime. A fellow wants to make money. He was ap

proached by a law enforcer and was asked if he wanted to deliver a package to a

certain person. When that fellow was delivering the package, he was apprehended.
Is he criminally liable? This is a case of instigation; he is not committing a
crime. A policeman suspected a fellow selling marijuana. The law enforcer asked
him, Are you selling that? How much? Could you bring that to the other fellow the
re? When he brought it there, the person, who happens to be a law enforcer, to wh
om the package was brought to found it to be marijuana. Even without bringing, h
e is already possessing the marijuana. The fact that he was appointed to another
person to find out its contents, is to discover whether the crime is committed.
This is entrapment. The element which makes instigation an absolutory cause is
the lack of criminal intent as an element of voluntariness. If the instigator is
a law enforcer, the person instigated cannot be criminally liable, because it i
s the law enforcer who planted that criminal mind in him to commit the crime, wi
thout which he would not have been a criminal. If the instigator is not a law en
forcer, both will be criminally liable, you cannot have a case of instigation. I
n instigation, the private citizen only cooperates with the law enforcer to a po
int when the private citizen upon instigation of the law enforcer incriminates h
imself. It would be contrary to public policy to prosecute
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lowering of the penalty or mitigating the penalty, this is an extenuating circum
stance. The concealment of honor by mother in the crime of infanticide is an ext
enuating circumstance but not in the case of parricide when the age of the victi
m is three days old and above. In the crime of adultery on the part of a married
woman abandoned by her husband, at the time she was abandoned by her husband, i
s it necessary for her to seek the company of another man. Abandonment by the hu
sband does not justify the act of the woman. It only extenuates or reduces crimi
nal liability. When the effect of the circumstance is to lower the penalty there
is an extenuating circumstance. A kleptomaniac is one who cannot resist the tem
ptation of stealing things which appeal to his desire. This is not exempting. On
e who is a kleptomaniac and who would steal objects of his desire is criminally
liable. But he would be given the benefit of a mitigating circumstance analogous
to paragraph 9 of Article 13, that of suffering from an illness which diminishe
s the exercise of his will power without, however, depriving him of the consciou
sness of his act. So this is an extenuating circumstance. The effect is to mitig
ate the criminal liability. Distinctions between circumstances justifying circum
stances and exempting
Vena V. Verga
Since there is a crime committed but there is no criminal, there is civil liabil
ity for the wrong done. But there is no criminal liability. However, in paragrap
hs 4 and 7 of Article 12, there is neither criminal nor civil liability.
When you apply for justifying or exempting circumstances, it is confession and a
voidance and burden of proof shifts to the accused and he can no longer rely on
weakness of prosecutions evidence Justifying circumstances Since the justifying c
ircumstances are in the nature of defensive acts, there must be always unlawful
aggression. The reasonableness of the means employed depends on the gravity of t
he aggression. If the unlawful aggressor was killed, this can only be justified
if it was done to save the life of the person defending or the person being defe
nded. The equation is life was taken to save life. Self Defense In justifying circ
umstances, the most important is self-defense. When this is given in the bar, it
is the element of unlawful aggression that is in issue. Never confuse unlawful
aggression with provocation. Mere provocation is not enough. Illustration: A and
B are long standing enemies. Because of their continuous quarrel over the bound
aries of their adjoining properties, when A saw B one afternoon, he approached t
he latter in a menacing manner with a bolo in his hand. When he was about five f
eet away from B, B pulled out a revolver and shot A on the chest, killing him. I
s B criminally liable? What crime was committed, if any? The act of A is nothing
but a provocation. It cannot be characterized as an unlawful aggression because
in criminal law, an unlawful aggression is an attack or a threatened attack whi
ch produces an imminent danger to the life and limb of the one resorting to self
-defense. In the facts of the problem given above, what was said was that A was
holding a bolo. That bolo does not produce any real or imminent danger unless a
raises his arm with the bolo. As long as that arm of A was down holding the bolo
, there is no imminent danger to the life or limb of B. Therefore, the act of B
in shooting A is not justified. Defense of rights is included in the circumstanc
es of defense and so is defense of honor. In US v. Mateo, while a woman was slee
ping, her sister and brother-in-law went to see a movie and came home late that
evening. The accused was
In justifying circumstances (1) (2) (3) (4) The circumstance affects the act, no
t the actor; The act complained of is considered to have been done within the bo
unds of law; hence, it is legitimate and lawful in the eyes of the law; Since th
e act is considered lawful, there is no crime, and because there is no crime, th
ere is no criminal; Since there is no crime or criminal, there is no criminal li

ability as well as civil liability.

In exempting circumstances (1) (2) (3) The circumstances affect the actor, not t
he act; The act complained of is actually wrongful, but the actor acted without
voluntariness. He is a mere tool or instrument of the crime; Since the act compl
ained of is actually wrongful, there is a crime. But because the actor acted wit
hout voluntariness, there is absence of dolo or culpa. There is no criminal;
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already asleep. The brother-in-law came up first while his wife was still in the
staircase. He started feeling through the dark, and in the process, he awakened
the accused. Believing that her honor was at stake, she got a pair of scissors
and stabbed the man. When the lights were turned on, she realized that she had s
tabbed her brother-in-law. The accused claimed as having acted in defense of her
honor and mistake of fact. She said that she believed that her own honor was at
stake. It was held that the whole matter is purely her imagination. Touching th
e arm could not produce such danger as would really be imminent to the honor of
the woman. Apparently, under the Revised Penal Code, the honor of a woman in res
pect of her defense is equated with her virginity. In US v. Jaurigue, it was hel
d that it was not possible to rape the accused because the whole thing transpire
d in the church, where there were so many people. Therefore, her availing of def
ense of honor is not tenable. She could not possibly be raped in that place. Def
ense of honor here is being equated with one of abuse of chastity of a woman. In
this case, the offended party placed his hand on the thigh of the woman who was
then praying. There was already some sort of aggression but it was not enough t
o warrant the act resorted to by the accused in getting a small knife from her b
ag and thrusting it on the chest of the offended party. Do not confuse unlawful
aggression with provocation. What justifies the killing of a supposed unlawful a
ggressor is that if the offender did not kill the aggressor, it will be his own
life that will be lost. That will be the situation. If that is not the situation
, even if there was an unlawful aggression that has already begun, you cannot in
voke self-defense. Illustration: Two policemen quarreled inside a police precinc
t. One shot the other. The other was wounded on his thigh. The policeman who was
wounded on the thigh jumped on the arm of the fellow who shot him. In the proce
ss, they wrestled for possession of the gun. The policeman who shot the other gu
y fell on the floor. On that point, this policeman who was shot at the thigh was
already able to get hold of the revolver. In that position, he started emptying
the revolver of the other policeman who was lying on the floor. In this case, i
t was held that the defense of self-defense is no available. The shooting was no
t justified. In People v. Rodriguez, a woman went into the house of another woma
n whom she suspected of having an affair with her husband. She started pouring g
asoline on the house of the woman. Since the woman has children inside the house
, she jumped out to prevent this other woman from pouring gasoline around the ho
use. The woman who was pouring gasoline had a bolo, so she started hacking the o
ther woman with it. They grappled with the bolo. At that moment, the one who jum
ped out of the house was able to wrest the bolo away and started hacking the oth
er woman. It was held that the hacking was not
Vena V. Verga
justified. Actually, when she killed the supposed unlawful aggressor, her life a
nd limb were no longer in imminent danger. That is the focal point. At the time
the accused killed the supposed unlawful aggressor, was her life in danger? If t
he answer is no, there is no self-defense. But while there may be no justifying
circumstance, do not forget the incomplete self-defense. This is a mitigating ci
rcumstance under paragraph 1 of Article 13. This mitigating circumstance is eith
er privileged or ordinary. If ordinary, it has the effect of reducing the imposa
ble penalty to the minimum period. But if it is privileged, it has the effect of
lowering the penalty by one to two degrees, depending on how the court will reg
ard the absence or presence of conditions to justify the act. Defense of propert
y rights This can only be invoked if the life and limb of the person making the
defense is also the subject of unlawful aggression. Life cannot be equal to prop
erty. Defense of stranger If the person being defended is already a second cousi
n, you do not invoke defense of relative anymore. It will be defense of stranger
. This is vital because if the person making the defense acted out or revenge, r
esentment or some evil motive in killing the aggressor, he cannot invoke the jus
tifying circumstance if the relative defended is already a stranger in the eyes
of the law. On the other hand, if the relative defended is still within the cove
rage of defense of relative, even though he acted out of some evil motive, it wo

uld still apply. It is enough that there was unlawful aggression against the rel
ative defended, and that the person defending did not contribute to the unlawful
aggression. Question & Answer The person being defended was a relative a first
cousin. But the fellow who killed the aggressor had some score to settle with th
e aggressor. Is he entitled to a justifying circumstance? Yes. In law, the condi
tion that a person making the defense did not act out of revenge, resentment or
evil motive is not a requirement in defense of relative. This is only required i
n defense of strangers. Incomplete self-defense or incomplete justifying circums
tance or incomplete exempting circumstances When you say incomplete justifying c
ircumstance, it means that not all the requisites to justify the act are present
or not the requisites to exempt from criminal liability are present.
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Vena V. Verga
How, if at all, may incomplete self-defense affect the criminal liability of the
offender? If the question specifically refers to incomplete self-defense, defen
se of relative or defense of stranger, you have to qualify your answer. First, t
o have incomplete self-defense, the offended party must be guilty of unlawful ag
gression. Without this, there can be no incomplete self-defense, defense of rela
tive, or defense of stranger. Second, if only the element of unlawful aggression
is present, the other requisites being absent, the offender shall be given only
the benefit of an ordinary mitigating circumstance. Third, if aside from the el
ement of unlawful aggression another requisite, but not all, are present, the of
fender shall be given the benefit of a privileged mitigating circumstance. In su
ch a case, the imposable penalty shall be reduced by one or two degrees dependin
g upon how the court regards the importance of the requisites present. Or absent
. If the question refers generally to justifying or exempting circumstances, the
question should be, how may incomplete justifying circumstance affect criminal l
iability of the offender, if at all? Make a separate answer with respect to selfdefense, defense of relative or defense of stranger because in these cases, you
always have to specify the element of unlawful aggression; otherwise, there woul
d be no incomplete selfdefense, defense of relative or defense of stranger. In g
eneral, with respect to other circumstances, you need only to say this: If less
than a majority of the requisites necessary to justify the act or exempt from cr
iminal liability are present, the offender shall only be entitled to an ordinary
mitigating circumstance. If a majority of the requisites needed to justify the
act or exempt from criminal liability are present, the offender shall be given t
he benefit of a privileged mitigating circumstance. The penalty shall be lowered
by one or two degrees. When there are only two conditions to justify the act or
to exempt from criminal liability, the presence of one shall be regarded as the
majority. State of necessity The state of necessity must not have been created
by the one invoking the justifying circumstances. For example, A drove his car b
eyond the speed limit so much so that when he reached the curve, his vehicle ski
dded towards a ravine. He swerved his car towards a house, destroying it and kil
ling the occupant therein. A cannot be justified because the state of necessity
was brought about by his own felonious act.
Civil liability referred to in a state of necessity is based not on the act comm
itted but on the benefit derived from the state of necessity. So the accused wil
l not be civilly liable if he did not receive any benefit out of the state of ne
cessity. On the other hand, persons who did not participate in the damage or inj
ury would be pro tanto civilly liable if they derived benefit out of the state o
f necessity. Civil liability is based on the benefit derived and not on the act,
damage or injury caused. It is wrong to treat this as an exception to the rule
that in justifying circumstances, there is no criminal nor civil liability, on t
he principle that no one should enrich himself at the expense of another. Illustra
tion: A and B are owners of adjoining lands. A owns the land for planting certai
n crops. B owns the land for raising certain goats. C used another land for a ve
getable garden. There was heavy rain and floods. Dam was opened. C drove all the
goats of B to the land of A. The goats rushed to the land of A to be saved, but
the land of A was destroyed. The author of the act is C, but C is not civilly l
iable because he did not receive benefits. It was B who was benefited, although
he was not the actor. He cannot claim that it was fortuitous event. B will answe
r only to the extent of the benefit derived by him. If C who drove all the goats
is accused of malicious mischief, his defense would be that he acted out of a s
tate of necessity. He will not be civilly liable. Fulfillment of duty In the jus
tifying circumstance of a person having acted out of fulfillment of a duty and t
he lawful exercise of a right or office, there are only two conditions: (1) (2)
The felony was committed while the offender was in the fulfillment of a duty or
in the lawful exercise of a right or office; and The resulting felony is the una

voidable consequence of the due fulfillment of the duty or the lawful exercise o
f the right or office.
Invariably, when you are given a problem on this premise, and the first conditio
n is present, but the second is not because the offender acted with culpa, the o
ffender will be entitled to a privelege mitigating circumstance. This is what yo
u call incomplete justification of fulfillment of duty or incomplete justificati
on of exercise of a right. In that case, the penalty would be reduced by one or
two degrees. In People v. Oanis and Callanta, the accused Chief of Police and th
e constabulary soldier were sent out to arrest a certain Balagtas, supposedly a
notorious bandit. There was an order to kill Balagtas if he would resist. The ac
cused arrived at the house of a dancer who was supposedly the girlfriend of Bala
gtas. When they were there, they saw a certain person who resembled Balagtas in
all his bodily appearance sleeping on a bamboo bed but facing the
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other direction. The accused, without going around the house, started firing at
the man. They found out later on that the man was not really Balagtas. They trie
d to invoke the justifying circumstance of having acted in fulfillment of a duty
. The second requisite is absent because they acted with negligence. There was n
othing that prevented them from looking around the house and looking at the face
of the fellow who was sleeping. There could not be any danger on their life and
limb. Hence, they were held guilty of the crime of murder because the fellow wa
s killed when he was sleeping and totally defenseless. However, the Supreme Cour
t granted them the benefit of incomplete justification of fulfillment of duty an
d the penalty was reduced by one or two degrees. Do not confuse fulfillment of a
duty with self-defense. Illustration: A, a policeman, while waiting for his wif
e to go home, was suddenly stabbed at the back by B, a hoodlum, who mistook him
for someone else. When A saw B, he drew his revolver and went after B. After fir
ing a shot in the air, B did not stop so A shot B who was hit at a vital part of
the body. B died. Is the act of A justified? Yes. The justifying circumstance o
f self-defense cannot be invoked because the unlawful aggression had already cea
sed by the time A shot B. When the unlawful aggressor started fleeing, the unlaw
ful aggression ceased. If the person attacked runs after him, in the eyes of the
law, he becomes the unlawful aggressor. Self-defense cannot be invoked. You app
ly paragraph 5 on fulfillment of duty. The offender was not only defending himse
lf but was acting in fulfillment of a duty, to bring the criminal to the authori
ties. As long as he was not acting out of malice when he fired at the fleeing cr
iminal, he cannot be made criminally liable. However, this is true only if it wa
s the person who stabbed was the one killed. But if, let us say, the policeman w
as stabbed and despite the fact that the aggressor ran into a crowd of people, t
he policeman still fired indiscriminately. The policeman would be held criminall
y liable because he acted with imprudence in firing toward several people where
the offender had run. But although he will be criminally liable, he will be give
n the benefit of an incomplete fulfillment of duty. Exempting circumstances In e
xempting circumstances, the reason for the exemption lies on the involuntariness
of the act one or some of the ingredients of voluntariness such as criminal int
ent, intelligence, or freedom of action on the part of the offender is missing.
In case it is a culpable felony, there is absence of freedom of action or intell
igence, or absence of negligence, imprudence, lack of foresight or lack of skill
Vena V. Verga
Imbecility and insanity There is complete absence of intelligence. Imbecile has
an IQ of 7. The intellectual deficiency is permanent. There is no lucid interval
unlike in insanity. The insanity that is exempting is limited only to mental ab
erration or disease of the mind and must completely impair the intelligence of t
he accused. Under common law countries, emotional or spiritual insanity are exem
pting circumstances unlike in this jurisdiction because the Revised Administrati
ve Code, as defined is limited to mental aberration of the mind. This was the ru
ling in People v. Dungo. In People v. Rafanan, decided on November 21, 1991, the
following are the two tests for exemption on grounds of insanity: (1) (2) The t
est of cognition, or whether the accused acted with complete deprivation of inte
lligence in committing said crime; and The test of volition, or whether the accu
sed acted in total deprivation of freedom of will.
Schizoprenia (dementia praecox) can only be considered a mitigating circumstance
because it does not completely deprive the offender of consciousness of his act
Minority In exempting circumstances, the most important issue is how the minorit
y of the offender affected his criminal liability. It seems that the view of man
y is that when the offender is a youthful offender, he must necessarily be confi
ned in a reformatory. This is wrong. A youthful offender can only be confined in

a reformatory upon order of the court. Under the amendment to Presidential Decr
ee No. 603, Presidential Decree No. 1179 requires that before a youthful offende
r may be given the benefit if a suspension of sentence, there must be an applica
tion filed with the court which should pronounce sentence. Note that the commitm
ent of the offender in a reformatory is just a consequence of the suspension of
the sentence. If the sentence is not suspended, there is no commitment in a refo
rmatory. The commitment is in a penitentiary, since suspension of sentence requi
res certain conditions: (1) (2) The crime committed should not be punishable by
reclusion perpetua or death penalty; The offender should not have been given the
benefit of a suspended sentence before. This means he is a first timer;
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(3) He must be below 18 years old because a youthful offender is one who is belo
w 18.
Vena V. Verga
When the offender is over nine but below 15, the penalty to be imposed is discre
tionary on the court, but lowered by at least two degrees. It may be lowered by
three or four degrees, depending upon whether the court deems best for the inter
est of the offender. The limitation that it should be lowered by at least two de
grees is just a limitation on the power of the court to reduce the penalty. It c
annot be less than two degrees. (4) If the offender is 15 years old and above bu
t below 18, there is no exemption anymore but he is also given the benefit of a
suspended sentence under the conditions stated earlier and if at the time the se
ntence is promulgated, he is not 18 years old or over yet. If the sentence is pr
omulgated, the court will impose a penalty one degree lower. This time it is fix
ed. It is to be imposed one degree lower and in the proper periods subject to th
e rules in Article 64.
Note that the age of majority has been reduced to 18. There is no more bracket w
here the offender is a minor yet no longer entitled to a mitigating circumstance
. An offender below 18 is always entitled to a mitigating or exempting circumsta
nce. How does the minority of the offender affect his criminal liability? (1) If
the offender is within the bracket of nine years old exactly or less, he is exe
mpt from criminal liability but not from civil liability. This type of offenders
are absolutely exempt. Even if the offender nine years or below acted with disc
ernment, this should not be taken against him because in this age bracket, the e
xemption is absolute. If over nine but below 15, a distinction has to be made wh
ether the offender acted with or without discernment. The burden is upon the pro
secution to prove that the offender acted with discernment. It is not for the mi
nor to prove that he acted without discernment. All that the minor has to show i
s that he is within the age bracket. If the prosecution would want to pin crimin
al liability on him, it has to prove that the crime was committed with discernme
nt. Here, if the offender was exempt from criminal liability because the prosecu
tion was not able to prove that the offender acted with discernment, he is only
civilly liable but he will be committed to the surveillance of his parents who w
ill be required to report to the court periodically on the progress or developme
nt of the offender. If the offender is proven to have acted with discernment, th
is is where the court may give him the benefit of a suspended sentence. He may b
e given the benefit of a suspended sentence under the conditions mentioned earli
er and only if he would file an application therefor. Suspension of sentence is
not automatic. If the youthful offender has filed an application therefor. (3) I
f at the time the judgment is to be promulgated he is already above 18, he canno
t avail of a suspended sentence. The reason is because if the sentence were to b
e suspended, he would be committed in a reformatory. Since he cannot be committe
d to a reformatory anymore because he is not less than 18 years old, he would ha
ve to be committed to a penitentiary. That means promulgation of the sentence sh
all not be suspended. If the sentence should not be suspended, although the mino
r may be qualified, the court will promulgate the sentence but the minor shall b
e entitled to the reduction of the penalty by at least two degrees.
Damnum absque injuria Under Article 12, paragraph 4, the offender is exempt not
only from criminal but also from civil liability. This paragraph embodies the La
tin maxim damnum absque injuria. Illustration: A person who is driving his car wit
hin the speed limit, while considering the condition of the traffic and the pede
strians at that time, tripped on a stone with one of his car tires. The stone fl
ew hitting a pedestrian on the head. The pedestrian suffered profuse bleeding. W
hat is the liability of the driver? There is no civil liability under paragraph
4 of Article 12. Although, this is just an exempting circumstance, where general

ly there is civil liability, yet, in paragraph 4 of Article 12, there is no civi

l liability as well as criminal liability. The driver is not under obligation to
defray the medical expenses. However, correlate paragraph 4 of Article 12 with
the second paragraph of Article 275. Article 275 gives you the crime of abandoni
ng the victim of ones own accident. It is a crime. Here, the accident referred to
in paragraph 2 of Article 275 is in the concept of paragraph 4 of Article 12. T
his means that the offender must be performing a lawful act, that he was doing i
t with due care but somehow, injury resulted by mere accident without fault or i
ntention of causing it. If at the very beginning, the offender was negligent, yo
u do not apply Article 275, paragraph 2. Instead, it will be Article 365 on crim
inal negligence. Notice that in the last paragraph of Article 365, in the case o
f the so-called hit and run drivers who have injured somebody and would abandon
the victim of the accident, the penalty is qualified to a higher degree. Here, u
nder paragraph 4 of Article 12, the infliction of the injury by mere accident do
es not give rise to a
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criminal or civil liability, but the person who caused the injury is duty bound
to attend to the person who was injured. If he would abandon him, it is in that
abandonment that the crime arises which is punished under the second paragraph o
f Article 275. Compulsion of irresistible uncontrollable fear force and under th
e impulse of an
Vena V. Verga
Privilege mitigating circumstances operate to reduce the penalty by one or two d
egrees, depending upon what the law provides. You can easily detect whether the
circumstance which mitigates the liability of the offender is privilege or not,
that is, if the penalty is reduced by degree. If the penalty is lowered by one o
r two degrees, it is privilege; therefore, even if there is an aggravating circu
mstance, do not compensate because that would be violating the rules. The circum
stances under Article 13 are generally ordinary mitigating, except in paragraph
1, where it is privilege, Article 69 would apply. So also, paragraph 2, in cases
where the offender is below 18 years old, such an offender if criminally liable
is entitled to the lowering of penalty by one degree. But if over nine but unde
r 15, he is entitled to a discretionary penalty of at least two degrees lower. W
hen there is a lowering of penalties by degrees, it is a privilege. It cannot be
offset by an aggravating circumstance. Although the bulk of the circumstances i
n Article 13 are ordinary mitigating circumstances, yet, when the crime committe
d is punishable by a divisible penalty, two or more of this ordinary mitigating
circumstances shall have the effect of a privilege mitigating circumstances if t
here is no aggravating circumstance at all. Correlate Article 13 with Articles 6
3 and 64. Article 13 is meaningless without knowing the rules of imposing the pe
nalties under Articles 63 and 64. In bar problems, when you are given indetermin
ate sentences, these articles are very important. When the circumstance which mi
tigates criminal liability is privileged, you give effect to it above all consid
erations. In other words, before you go into any circumstance, lower first the p
enalty to the proper degree. That is precisely why this circumstance is consider
ed privileged. It takes preference over all other circumstances. Question & Answ
er A 17 year old boy committed parricide. Will he be given the benefit of Indete
rminate Sentence Law? Then, the facts state, penalty for parricide is reclusion
perpetua to death. You have learned that the Indeterminate Sentence Law does not
apply, among other situations, when the penalty imposed is death or life impris
onment. But then in the problem given, the offender is a 17-year old boy. That c
ircumstance is privileged. So before you go in the Indeterminate Sentence Law, y
ou have to apply that circumstance first. Being a 17-year old boy, therefore, th
e penalty would go one degree lower and the penalty for parricide which now stan
ds at reclusion perpetua will go down to reclusion
The offender must be totally deprived of freedom. If the offender has still free
dom of choice, whether to act or not, even if force was employed on him or even
if he is suffering from uncontrollable fear, he is not exempt from criminal liab
ility because he is still possessed with voluntariness. In exempting circumstanc
es, the offender must act without voluntariness. In a situation where the offend
er would otherwise be exempt, but the requisites for exemption are not all prese
nt, the offender is still entitled to a mitigating circumstance of incomplete ex
emption under paragraph 1 of Article 13. Apply the rule if majority of the requi
sites to exempt from criminal liability are present. The offender shall be given
the benefit of privelege mitigating circumstances. That means that the penalty
prescribed of the crime committed shall be reduced by one or two degrees in acco
rdance with Article 69 of the Revised Penal Code. If less than a majority of the
requisites for exemption are present, the offender shall be given only the bene
fit of ordinary mitigating circumstances. That means the penalty shall be reduce
d to the minimum period of the prescribed penalty, unless the mitigating circums
tance is offset by an aggravating circumstance. Mitigating circumstances Distinc
tions between ordinary mitigating circumstances (1) mitigating circumstances and

As to the nature of the circumstances Ordinary mitigating circumstances can be o

ffset by aggravating circumstances. Privilege mitigating circumstance aggravatin
g circumstance. can never be offset by any
As to effect Ordinary mitigating circumstances, if not offset, will operate to r
educe the penalty to the minimum period, provided the penalty is a divisible one
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temporal. Reclusion temporal is already governed by the Indeterminate Sentence L
aw. The answer, therefore, is yes. He shall be given the benefit of the Indeterm
inate Sentence Law. Although the penalty prescribed for the crime committed is r
eclusion perpetua, that is not the imposable penalty, since being 17 years old i
s a privilege mitigating circumstance. That privilege lowers the penalty by one
degree. The imposable penalty, therefore, is reclusion temporal. The Indetermina
te Sentence Law applies to this and so the offender will be given its benefit. C
riminal laws are to be construed always in a manner liberal or lenient to the of
fender. Between giving the offender the benefit of the Indeterminate Sentence La
w and withholding it away from him, there is more reason to give him its benefit
. It is wrong for you to determine whether the Indeterminate Sentence Law will a
pply or not on the basis of reclusion perpetua because that is not the imposable
penalty. The moment you do that, you disregard the privileged character of mino
rity. You are only treating it as an ordinary mitigating circumstance. Privilege
mitigating circumstance will apply over and above all other considerations. Whe
n you arrive at the correct penalty, that is the time when you find out whether
the Indeterminate Sentence Law will apply or not. For purposes of lowering the p
enalty by one or two degrees, the age of the offender at the time of the commiss
ion of the crime shall be the basis, not the age of the offender at the time the
sentence is to be imposed. But for purposes of suspension of the sentence, the
age of the offender at the time the crime was committed is not considered, it is
the age of the offender at the time the sentence is to be promulgated. Praeter
intentionem The common circumstance given in the bar of praeter intentionem, und
er paragraph 3, means that there must be a notable disproportion between the mea
ns employed by the offender compared to that of the resulting felony. If the res
ulting felony could be expected from the means employed, this circumstance does
not avail. This circumstance does not apply when the crime results from criminal
negligence or culpa. When the crime is the product of reckless imprudence or si
mple negligence, mitigating circumstances does not apply. This is one of the thr
ee instances where the offender has performed a felony different from that which
he intended. Therefore, this is the product of intentional felony, not a culpab
le one. Sufficient threat or provocation This is mitigating only if the crime wa
s committed on the very person who made the threat or provocation. The common se
t-up given in a bar problem is
Vena V. Verga
that of provocation was given by somebody. The person provoked cannot retaliate
against him; thus, the person provoked retaliated on a younger brother or on an
elder father. Although in fact, there is sufficient provocation, it is not mitig
ating because the one who gives the provocation is not the one against whom the
crime was committed. Question & Answer A was walking in front of the house of B.
B at that time was with his brother C. C told B that sometime in the past, A bo
xed him, and because he was small, he did not fight back. B approached A and box
ed him, but A cannot hit back at B because B is bigger, so A boxed C. Can A invo
ke sufficient provocation to mitigate criminal liability? No. Sufficient provoca
tion must come from the offended party. There may actually be sufficient provoca
tion which immediately preceded the act, but if provocation did not come from th
e person offended, paragraph 4, Article 13 will not apply. The commission of the
felony must be immediate to the threat or provocation in order that this circum
stance be mitigating. If there is sufficient break of time before the provocatio
n or threat and the consequent commission of the crime, the law presupposes that
during that interval, whatever anger or diminished self control may have emerge
d from the offender had already vanished or disappeared. In applying this mitiga
ting circumstance, the courts are generally considering that there must be no br
eak between the provocation or threat and the commission of the felony. In other
words, the felony was committed precisely because he was then and there provoke
d. However, the recent rulings of the Supreme Court, as well as the Court of App
eals, has stretched this criterion it is not only a matter of time anymore. Befo
re, there was a ruling that if a period of one hour had lapsed between the provo

cation and the commission of the felony, this mitigating circumstance is no long
er applicable. Illustration: The accused went to a barrio dance. In that gatheri
ng, there was a bully and he told the accused that he is not allowed to go insid
e. The accused tried to reason out but the bully slapped him several times in fr
ont of so many people, some of whom were ladies who were being courted by the ac
cused, so he was humiliated and embarrassed. However, he cannot fight the bully
at that time because the latter was much bigger and heavier. Accused had no choi
ce but to go home. When he saw the bully again, this time, he was armed with a k
nife and he stabbed the bully to death. The evidence for the accused showed that
when he went home, he was not able to sleep throughout the night, thinking of t
he humiliation and outrage done to him, despite the lapse of about 22 hours.
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The Supreme Court gave him the benefit of this mitigating circumstance. The reas
on stated by the Supreme Court for allowing the accused to be benefited by this
mitigating circumstance is that the effect of the humiliation and outrage emitte
d by the offended party as a provocation upon the accused was still present when
he committed the crime and, therefore, the reason for paragraph 4 still applies
. The accused was still acting under a diminished self control because he was th
inking of the humiliation he suffered in the hands of the offended party. The ou
trage was so serious unless vindicated. This is the correct interpretation of pa
ragraph 4, Article 13. As long as the offender at the time he committed the felo
ny was still under the influence of the outrage caused by the provocation or thr
eat, he is acting under a diminished self control. This is the reason why it is
mitigating. You have to look at two criteria: (1) If from the element of time, t
here is a material lapse of time stated in the problem and there is nothing stat
ed in the problem that the effect of the threat or provocation had prolonged and
affected the offender at the time he committed the crime, then you use the crit
erion based on the time element. However, if there is that time element and at t
he same time, facts are given indicating that at the time the offender committed
the crime, he is still suffering from outrage of the threat or provocation done
to him, then he will still get the benefit of this mitigating circumstance. was
the the the
Vena V. Verga
The word immediate here does not carry the same meaning as that under paragraph 4.
The word immediate here is an erroneous Spanish translation because the Spanish w
ord is proxima and not immediatementa. Therefore, it is enough that the offender com
mitted the crime with the grave offense done to him, his spouse, his ascendant o
r descendant or to his brother or sister, whether natural, adopted or legitimate
and that is the proximate cause of the commission of the crime. Passion or obfu
scation This stands on the premise or proposition that the offender is suffering
from a diminished self control because of the passion or obfuscation. The same
is true with the circumstances under paragraphs 4 and 5. So, there is a ruling t
o the effect that if the offender is given the benefit of paragraph 4, he cannot
be given the benefit of paragraph 5 or 6, or vice-versa. Only one of the three
mitigating circumstances should be given in favor of the offender. However, in o
ne case, one of the mitigating circumstances under paragraphs 4, 5 and 6 stands
or arises from a set of facts, and another mitigating circumstance arises from a
nother set of facts. Since they are predicated on different set of facts, they m
ay be appreciated together, although they arose from one and the same case. Henc
e, the prohibition against considering all these mitigating circumstances togeth
er and not as one applies only if they would be taken on the basis of the same s
et of facts. If the case involves a series of facts, then you can predicate any
one of these circumstances on one fact and the other on another fact and so on.
The passion must be legitimate. As a rule, it cannot be based on common law rela
tionship because common law relationships are illicit. However, consider whether
passion or obfuscation is generated by common law relationship or by some other
human consideration. In a case where the relationship between the accused and t
he woman he was living with was one of common law, he came home and surprised hi
s common law wife having sexual intercourse with a friend. This infuriated him.
He killed the friend and he claimed passion or obfuscation. The trial court deni
ed his claim because the relationship was a common law one. On review, the accus
ed was given the benefit of the circumstances and the basis of considering passi
on or obfuscation in favor of the accused was the act of the common law wife in
committing adultery right from the conjugal bed. Whether or not they are married
, any man who discovers that infidelity was committed on the very bed provided b
y him to the woman would naturally be subjected to obfuscation. When a married p
erson surprised his better half in the act of sexual intercourse with another, h
e gets the benefit of Article 247. However, that requisite which in

In People v. Diokno, a Chinaman eloped with a woman. Actually, it almost three d

ays before accused was able to locate the house where Chinaman brought the woman
. Here, sufficient provocation was one of mitigating circumstances considered by
the Supreme Court in favor of accused. Vindication of a grave offense
The word offense should not be taken as a crime. It is enough if what was imputed
or what was done was wrong. In considering whether the wrong is a grave one upon
the person who committed the crime, his age, education and social status will b
e considered. Here, in vindication of a grave offense, the vindication need not
be done by the person upon whom the grave offense was committed. So, unlike in s
ufficient threat or provocation where the crime should be inflicted upon the ver
y person who made the threat or provocation, here, it need not be the same perso
n who committed the grave offense or who was offended by the wrong done by the o
ffended party.
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the first place, the offender must have surprised his/her spouse actually commit
ting sexual intercourse should be present. If the surprising was done not in the
actual act of sexual intercourse but before or after it, then Article 247 does
not apply. Although this is the ruling, still, the accused will be given the ben
efit of sufficient provocation if the intercourse was done in his dwelling. If t
his act was done somewhere else and the accused kills the paramour or the spouse
, this may be considered as mitigation of a grave offense to him or otherwise as
a situation sufficient to create passion or obfuscation. Therefore, when a marr
ied man upon coming home, surprises his wife who was nude and lying with another
man who was also nude, Article 247 does not apply. If he kills them, vindicatio
n of a grave offense will be mitigating in favor of the offender. Illustrations:
A is courting B, a receptionist in a beerhouse. C danced with B. A saw this and
stabbed C. It was held that jealousy is an acknowledged basis of passion. A, a
male classmate is escorting B, a female classmate. On the way out, some men whis
tled lustfully. The male classmate stabbed said men. This was held to be obfusca
tion. When a man saw a woman bathing, almost naked, for which reason he raped he
r, such man cannot claim passion as a mitigating circumstance. A man and a woman
were living together for 15 years. The man left the village where they were liv
ing and never returned home. The common law wife learned that he was getting mar
ried to a classmate. On the scheduled wedding day, she stabbed the groom in the
chest, instantly killing him. She confessed and explained that any woman cannot
tolerate what he did to her. She gave him the best years of her life. She practi
cally waited for him day and night. It was held that passion and obfuscation wer
e considered mitigating. Ingratitude was shown here. Voluntary surrender The ess
ence of voluntary surrender requires that the offender, after having committed t
he crime, had evaded the law enforcers and the law enforcers do not know of his
whereabouts. In short, he continues to elude arrest. If, under this circumstance
, the offender would come out in the open and he gives himself up, his act of do
ing so will be considered as indicative of repentance and he also saves the gove
rnment the time and the expense of looking for him. As a general rule, if after
committing the crime, the offender did not flee and he went with the responding
law enforcers meekly, voluntary surrender is not applicable.
Vena V. Verga
However, there is a ruling that if after committing the crime, the offender did
not flee and instead waited for the law enforcers to arrive and he surrendered t
he weapon he used in killing the victim, the ruling was that voluntary surrender
is mitigating. In this case, the offender had the opportunity to go into hiding
, the fact that he did not flee is not voluntary surrender. However, if he comes
out from hiding because he is seriously ill and he went to get medical treatmen
t, the surrender is not considered as indicative of remorse or repentance. The s
urrender here is only done out of convenience to save his own self. Hence, it is
not mitigating. Even if the offender may have gone into hiding, if the law enfo
rcers had already known where he is hiding and it is just a matter of time befor
e he is flushed out of that place, then even if the law enforcers do not know ex
actly where he was hiding and he would come out, this is not voluntary surrender
. Whether or not a warrant of arrest had been issued against the offender is imm
aterial and irrelevant. The criterion is whether or not the offender had gone in
to hiding or had the opportunity to go into hiding and the law enforcers do not
know of his whereabouts. If he would give up, his act of surrendering under such
circumstance indicates that he is willing to accept the consequences of the wro
ng he has done and also thereby saves the government the effort, the time and th
e expenses to be incurred in looking for him. Where the offender went to the mun
icipal building not to own responsibility for the killing, such fact is not tant
amount to voluntary surrender as a mitigating circumstance. Although he admitted
his participation in the killing, he tried to avoid responsibility by claiming
self-defense which however he was not able to prove. People v. Mindac, decided D
ecember 14, 1992. Surrender to be considered voluntary and thus mitigating, must
be spontaneous, demonstrating an intent to submit himself unconditionally to th

e person in authority or his agent in authority, because (1) he acknowledges his

guilt (2) he wishes to save the government the trouble and expenses of searchin
g and capturing him. Where the reason for the surrender of the accused was to in
sure his safety, his arrest by policemen pursuing him being inevitable, the surr
ender is not spontaneous. Physical defect The physical defect that a person may
have must have a relation to the commission of the crime. In a case where the of
fender is deaf and dumb, personal property was entrusted to him and he misapprop
riated the same. The crime committed was estafa. The fact that he was deaf and d
umb is not mitigating because that does not bear any relation to the crime commi
tted. Not any physical defect will affect the crime. It will only do so if it ha
s some relation to the crime committed. If a person is deaf and dumb and he has
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slandered, he cannot talk so what he did was, he got a piece of wood and struck
the fellow on the head. The crime committed was physical injuries. The Supreme C
ourt held that being a deaf and dumb is mitigating because the only way is to us
e his force because he cannot strike back. If the offender is blind in one eye,
as long as his means of action, defense or communication with others are not res
tricted, such circumstance is not mitigating. This circumstance must also have a
bearing on the crime committed and must depend on how the crime was committed.
Analogous cases The act of the offender of leading the law enforcers to the plac
e where he buried the instrument of the crime has been considered as equivalent
to voluntary surrender. The act of a thief in leading the authorities to the pla
ce where he disposed of the loot has been considered as analogous or equivalent
to voluntary surrender. Stealing by a person who is driven to do so out of extre
me poverty is considered as analogous to incomplete state of necessity. However,
this is not so where the offender became impoverished because of his own way of
living his life. If his lifestyle is one of having so many vices, as a result o
f which he became poor, his subsequent stealing because of his poverty will not
be considered mitigated by incomplete state of necessity. Aggravating circumstan
ces Kinds of aggravating circumstances: (1) (2) (3) (4) Generic or those that ca
n generally apply to all crime; Specific or those that apply only to a particula
r crime; Qualifying or those that change the nature of the crime; Inherent or th
ose that must of necessity accompany the commission of the crime.
Vena V. Verga
because there is no qualifying circumstance that is not aggravating. To say qual
ifying aggravating circumstance is redundant. In the examination, if you find qu
alifying circumstances, you have to think about these as aggravating circumstanc
es which are the ingredients of the crime. Distinctions between aggravating and
qualifying circumstances: In aggravating circumstances (1) (2) The circumstance
circumstance; can be offset by an ordinary mitigating
No need to allege this circumstance in the information, as long as it is proven
during trial. If it is proved during trial, the court would consider the same in
imposing the penalty; It is not an ingredient of a crime. It only affects the p
enalty to be imposed but the crime remains the same.
In qualifying circumstance (1) The circumstance affects the nature of the crime
itself such that the offender shall be liable for a more serious crime. The circ
umstance is actually an ingredient of the crime; Being an ingredient of the crim
e, it cannot be offset by any mitigating circumstance; Qualifying circumstances
to be appreciated as such must be specifically alleged in the complaint or infor
mation. If not alleged but proven during the trial, it will be considered only a
s generic aggravating circumstance. If this happens, they are susceptible of bei
ng offset by a mitigating circumstance.
(2) (3)
An aggravating circumstance is qualifying when it is an ingredient of the crime.
Therefore it is included in the provision of law defining the crime. If it is n
ot so included, it is not qualifying. In Article 248, in the crime of murder, th
e law specifically mentions thereunder several circumstances which are aggravati
ng under Article 14. All of these will qualify a killing from homicide to murder
; however, you understand that only one is qualifying. If let us say, the accuse
d was charged with murder. Three of these circumstances: treachery, evident prem
editation and act was done in consideration of a price, reward or promise were a
lleged as aggravating. Only one of these is qualifying. If any one of the three
circumstances was proven, the crime was already murder. If the other two are als
o proven, even if they are alleged in the information or complaint, they are onl

y to be taken as
The aggravating circumstances must be established with moral certainty, with the
same degree of proof required to establish the crime itself. Most important of
the classification of aggravating circumstances are the qualifying and the gener
ic aggravating circumstances. In practice, the so-called generic aggravating cir
cumstances are referred to simply as aggravating circumstances. The so-called qu
alifying aggravating circumstances are simply referred to as qualifying circumst
ances. This is so
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generic. If there is any mitigating circumstance in favor of the offender, the t
wo other circumstances which are otherwise qualifying could be offset by the mit
igating, provided the mitigating circumstance is not a privileged mitigating cir
cumstance. Therefore, if there are three of the qualifying circumstances alleged
in the complaint or information, only one will qualify the crime. The others wi
ll merely be considered as generic. Thus, if there is any ordinary mitigating ci
rcumstance in favor of the accused, such will be wiped out by these circumstance
s, although initially they are considered as qualifying. Do not hesitate to offs
et on the principle that a qualifying circumstance cannot be offset by an ordina
ry mitigating circumstance because only one is necessary. Even if any of the qua
lifying circumstances under Article 248 on murder was proven, if that is not the
circumstance alleged in the information, it cannot qualify the crime. Let us sa
y, what was alleged in the information was treachery. During the trial, what was
proven was the price, reward or promise as a consideration for killing. The tre
achery was not proved. Just the same, the accused cannot be convicted of murder
because the circumstance proven is not qualifying but merely generic. It is gene
ric because it is not alleged in the information at all. If any of these qualify
ing circumstances is not alleged in the information, it cannot be considered qua
lifying because a qualifying is an ingredient of the crime and it cannot be take
n as such without having alleged in the information because it will violate the
right of the accused to be informed of the nature of the accusation against him.
Correlate Article 14 with Article 62. Article 62 gives you the different rules
regarding aggravating circumstances. Aggravating circumstances will not be consi
dered when it is the crime itself. If the crime charged is qualified trespass to
dwelling, dwelling is no longer aggravating. When the aggravating circumstance
refers to the material execution of the crime, like treachery, it will only aggr
avate the criminal liability of those who employed the same. Illustration: A per
son induced another to kill somebody. That fellow killed the other guy and emplo
yed treachery. As far as the killing is concerned, the treachery will qualify on
ly the criminal liability of the actual executioner. The fellow who induced him
becomes a co-principal and therefore, he is liable for the same crime committed.
However, let us say, the fellow was hired to kill the parent of the one who hir
ed him. He killed a stranger and not the parent. What was committed is different
from what was agreed upon. The fellow who hired him will not be liable for the
crime he had done because that was not the crime he was hired to commit. Taking
advantage of public position Article 62 was also amended by the Republic Act No.
7659. The legal import of this amendment is that the subject circumstance has b
een made a qualifying or special aggravating that shall not be offset or compens
ated by a mitigating
Vena V. Verga
circumstance. If not alleged in the information, however, but proven during the
trial, it is only appreciated as a generic aggravating circumstance. The mitigat
ing circumstance referred to in the amendment as not affecting the imposition of
the penalty in the maximum are only ordinary mitigating circumstances. Privileg
ed mitigating circumstances always lower the penalty accordingly. Disrespect due
to rank, age, sex Aggravating only in crimes against persons and honor, not aga
inst property like Robbery with homicide (People v. Ga, 156 SCRA 790). Teachers,
professors, supervisors of public and duly recognized private schools, colleges
and universities, as well as lawyers are persons in authority only for purposes
of direct assault and simple resistance, but not for purposes of aggravating ci
rcumstances in paragraph 2, Article 14. (People v. Taoan, 182 SCRA 601). Abuse o
f confidence Do not confuse this with mere betrayal of trust. This is aggravatin
g only when the very offended party is the one who reposed the confidence. If th
e confidence is reposed by another, the offended party is different from the fel
low who reposed the confidence and abuse of confidence in this case is not aggra
vating. Illustrations: A mother left her young daughter with the accused because
she had nobody to leave the child with while she had to go on an errand. The ac
cused abused the child. It was held that the abuse of confidence is not aggravat

ing. What is present is betrayal of trust and that is not aggravating. In a case
where the offender is a servant, the offended party is one of the members of th
e family. The servant poisoned the child. It was held that abuse of confidence i
s aggravating. This is only true however, if the servant was still in the servic
e of the family when he did the killing. If he was driven by the master already
out of the house for some time and he came back and poisoned the child, abuse of
confidence is no longer aggravating. The reason is because that confidence has
already been terminated when the offender was driven out of the house.
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Dwelling Dwelling will only be aggravating if it is the dwelling of the offended
party. It should also not be the dwelling of the offender. If the dwelling is b
oth that of the offended party and the offender, dwelling is not aggravating. Dw
elling need not be owned by the offended party. It is enough that he used the pl
ace for his peace of mind, rest, comfort and privacy. The rule that dwelling, in
order to be aggravating must be owned by the offended party is no longer absolu
te. Dwelling can be aggravating even if it is not owned by the offended party, p
rovided that the offended party is considered a member of the family who owns th
e dwelling and equally enjoys peace of mind, privacy and comfort. Illustration:
Husband and wife quarreled. Husband inflicted physical violence upon the wife. T
he wife left the conjugal home and went to the house of her sister bringing her
personal belongings with her. The sister accommodated the wife in the formers ho
me. The husband went to the house of the sister-in-law and tried to persuade the
wife to come back to the conjugal home but the wife refused because she is more
at peace in her sister s house than in the conjugal abode. Due to the wife s re
fusal to go back to the conjugal home and live with the husband, the husband pul
led out a knife and stabbed the wife which caused her death. It was held that dw
elling was aggravating although it is not owned by the offended party because th
e offended party is considered as a member of the family who owns the dwelling a
nd that dwelling is where she enjoyed privacy. Peace of mind and comfort. Even a
room in a hotel if rented as a dwelling, like what the salesmen do when they ar
e assigned in the provinces and they rent rooms, is considered a dwelling. A roo
m in a hotel or motel will be considered dwelling if it is used with a certain d
egree of permanence, where the offended party seeks privacy, rest, peace of mind
and comfort. If a young man brought a woman in a motel for a short time and the
re he was killed, dwelling is not aggravating. A man was killed in the house of
his common law wife. Dwelling is aggravating in this case because the house was
provided by the man. Dwelling should not be understood in the concept of a domic
ile. A person has more than one dwelling. So, if a man has so many wives and he
gave them a places of their own, each one is his own dwelling. If he is killed t
here, dwelling will be aggravating, provided that he also stays there once in a
while. When he is only a visitor there, dwelling is not aggravating. The crime o
f adultery was committed. Dwelling was considered aggravating on the part of the
paramour. The paramour is not a resident of the same dwelling.
Vena V. Verga
However, if the paramour was also residing on the same dwelling, dwelling is not
considered aggravating. The term dwelling includes all the dependencies necessary
for a house or for rest or for comfort or a place of privacy. If the place used
is on the second floor, the stairs which are used to reach the second floor is
considered a dwelling because the second floor cannot be enjoyed without the sta
irs. If the offended party was assaulted while on the stairs, dwelling is alread
y aggravating. For this reason, considering that any dependency necessary for th
e enjoyment of a place of abode is considered a dwelling. Illustrations: A and B
are living in one house. A occupies the ground floor while B the upper floor. T
he stairs here would form part only of B s dwelling, the same being necessary an
d an integral part of his house or dwelling. Hence, when an attack is made while
A is on the stairs, the aggravating circumstance of dwelling is not present. If
the attack is made while B was on the stairs, then the aggravating circumstance
of dwelling is present. Whenever one is in his dwelling, the law is presuming t
hat he is not intending to commit a wrong so one who attacks him while in the tr
anquility of his home shows a degree of perversity in him. Hence, this aggravati
ng circumstance. Dwelling is not limited to the house proper. All the appurtenan
ces necessary for the peace and comfort, rest and peace of mind in the abode of
the offended party is considered a dwelling. Illustrations: A man was fixing som
ething on the roof of his house when he was shot. It was held that dwelling is a
ggravating. Roof still part of the house. In the provinces where the comfort roo
ms are usually far from the house proper, if the offended party while answering
the call of nature is killed, then dwelling is aggravating because the comfort r

oom is a necessary dependency of the house proper. A person while in the room of
his house, maintaining the room, was shot. Dwelling is aggravating. If the offe
nder entered the house and the offended party jumped out of the house, even if t
he offender caught up with him already out of the house, dwelling is still aggra
vating. The reason is because he could not have left his dwelling were it not fo
r the fact that the attacker entered the house. If the offended party was inside
the house and the offender was outside and the latter shot the former inside th
e house while he was still outside. Dwelling is still aggravating even if the of
fender did not enter the house.
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Vena V. Verga
A is on board a banca, not so far away. B and C also are on board on their respe
ctive bancas. Suddenly, D showed up from underwater and stabbed B. Is there an a
ggravating circumstance of uninhabited place here? Yes, considering the fact tha
t A and C before being able to give assistance still have to jump into the water
and swim towards B and the time it would take them to do that, the chances of B
receiving some help was very little, despite the fact that there were other per
sons not so far from the scene. Evidence tending to prove that the offender took
advantage of the place and purposely availed of it is to make it easier to comm
it the crime, shall be necessary. Nighttime What if the crime started during the
daytime and continued all the way to nighttime? This is not aggravating. As a r
ule, the crime must begin and end during the nighttime. Crime began at day and e
nded at night, as well as crime began at night and ended at day is not aggravate
d by the circumstance of nighttime. Darkness is what makes this circumstance agg
ravating. Illustration: One evening, a crime was committed near the lamp post. T
he Supreme Court held that there is no aggravating circumstance of nighttime. Ev
en if the crime was committed at night, but there was light, hence, darkness was
not present, no aggravating circumstance just by the fact of nighttime alone. E
ven if there was darkness but the nighttime was only an incident of a chance mee
ting, there is no aggravating circumstance here. It must be shown that the offen
der deliberately sought the cover of darkness and the offender purposely took ad
vantage of nighttime to facilitate the commission of the offense. Nocturnity is
the period of time after sunset to sunrise, from dusk to dawn. Different forms o
f repetition or habituality of the offender
A garage is part of the dwelling when connected with an interior passage to the
house proper. If not connected, it is not considered part of the dwelling. One-h
alf of the house is used as a store and the other half is used for dwelling but
there is only one entrance. If the dwelling portion is attacked, dwelling is not
aggravating because whenever a store is open for business, it is a public place
and as such is not capable of being the subject of trespass. If the dwelling po
rtion is attacked where even if the store is open, there is another separate ent
rance to the portion used for dwelling, the circumstance is aggravating. However
, in case the store is closed, dwelling is aggravating since here, the store is
not a public place as in the first case. Balcony is part of the dwelling because
it is appurtenant to the house Dwelling is aggravating in robbery with homicide
because the crime can be committed without necessarily transgressing the sancti
ty of the home (People v. De Los Reyes, decided October 22, 1992). Dwelling is a
ggravating where the place is, even for a brief moment, a home, although he is not
the owner thereof as when victim was shot in the house of his parents. Band In
band, there should at least be four persons. All of them should be armed. Even i
f there are four, but only three or less are armed, it is not a band. Whenever y
ou talk of band, always have in mind four at least. Do not say three or more bec
ause it is four or more. The way the law defines a band is somewhat confusing be
cause it refers simply to more than 3, when actually it should be 4 or more. Cor
relate this with Article 306 - Brigandage. The crime is the band itself. The mer
e forming of a band even without the commission of a crime is already a crime so
that band is not aggravating in brigandage because the band itself is the way t
o commit brigandage. However, where brigandage is actually committed, band becom
es aggravating. Uninhabited place It is determined not by the distance of the ne
arest house to the scene of the crime but whether or not in the place of the com
mission of the offense , there was a reasonable possibility of the victim receiv
ing some help. Illustration:
Recidivism under Article 14 (9) The offender at the time of his trial for one cr
ime shall have been previously convicted by final judgment of another embraced i

n the same title of the Revised Penal Code. Repetition or reiteracion under Arti
cle 14 (10) The offender has been previously punished for an offense which the l
aw attaches an equal or
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greater penalty or for two or more crimes to which it attaches a lighter penalty
. (3) Habitual delinquency under Article 62 (5) The offender within the period o
f 10 years from the date of his release or last conviction of the crimes of seri
ous or less serious physical injuries, robo, hurto, estafa or falsification, is
found guilty of the any of said crimes a third time or oftener. Quasi-recidivism
under Article 160 Any person who shall commit a felony after having been convic
ted by final judgment before beginning to serve such sentence or while serving s
uch sentence shall be punished by the maximum period prescribed by law for the n
ew felony. (5)
Vena V. Verga
penalty shall be imposed depending upon whether it is already the third convicti
on, the fourth, the fifth and so on . . . The circumstance must be alleged in th
e information; otherwise the court cannot acquire jurisdiction to impose additio
nal penalty.
Recidivism In recidivism, the emphasis is on the fact that the offender was prev
iously convicted by final judgement of a felony and subsequently found guilty of
another felony embraced in the same title of the Revised Penal Code. The law co
nsiders this aggravating when a person has been committing felonies embraced in
the same title because the implication is that he is specializing on such kind o
f crime and the law wants to prevent any specialization. Hence, ordinarily, when
a person commits a crime under different titles, no aggravating circumstance is
present. It is important that the conviction which came earlier must refer to t
he crime committed earlier than the subsequent conviction. Illustration: In 1980
, A committed robbery. While the case was being tried, he committed theft in 198
3. He was found guilty and was convicted of theft also in 1983. The conviction b
ecame final because he did not appeal anymore and the trial for his earlier crim
e which was robbery ended in 1984 where he was also convicted. He also did not a
ppeal this decision. Is the accused a recidivist? The subsequent conviction must
refer to a felony committed later in order to constitute recidivism. The reason
for this is as the time the first crime was committed, there was no other crime
of which he was convicted so he cannot be regarded as a repeater. In recidivism
, the crimes committed should be felonies. Recidivism cannot be had if the crime
committed is a violation of a special law. Recidivism does not prescribe. No ma
tter how long ago the offender was convicted, if he is subsequently convicted of
a crime embraced in the same title of the Revised Penal Code, it is taken into
account as aggravating in imposing the penalty. Pardon does not erase recidivism
, even if it is absolute because only excuses the service of the penalty, but no
t the conviction. If the offender has already served his sentence and he was ext
ended an absolute pardon, the pardon shall erase the conviction including recidi
vism because there is no more penalty so it shall be understood as referring to
the conviction or the effects of the crime. Recidivism may be considered even th
ough not alleged in the information because this is only a generic aggravating c
Distinctions between recidivism and habitual delinquency In recidivism (1) (2) (
3) (4) Two convictions are enough. The crimes are not specified; it is enough th
at they may be embraced under the same title of the Revised Penal Code. There is
no time limit between the first conviction and the subsequent conviction. Recid
ivism is imprescriptible. It is a generic aggravating circumstance which can be
offset by an ordinary mitigating circumstance. If not offset, it would only incr
ease the penalty prescribed by law for the crime committed to its maximum period
. The circumstance need not be alleged in the information.

In habitual delinquency (1) (2) At least three convictions are required. The cri
mes are limited and specified to: (a) serious physical injuries, (b) less seriou
s physical injuries, (c) robbery, (d) theft, (e) estafa or swindling and (f) fal
sification. There is a time limit of not more than 10 years between every convic
tions computed from the first conviction or release from punishment thereof to c
onviction computed from the second conviction or release therefrom to the third
conviction and so on . . . Habitual delinquency is a special aggravating circums
tance, hence it cannot be offset by any mitigating circumstance. Aside from the
penalty prescribed by law for the crime committed, an additional
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Vena V. Verga
When the offender is a recidivist and at the same time a habitual delinquent, th
e penalty for the crime for which he will be convicted will be increased to the
maximum period unless offset by a mitigating circumstance. After determining the
correct penalty for the last crime committed, an added penalty will be imposed
in accordance with Article 62. Habitual delinquency, being a special or specific
aggravating circumstance must be alleged in the information. If it is not alleg
ed in the information and in the course of the trial, the prosecution tried to p
rove that the offender is a habitual delinquent over the objection of the accuse
d, the court has no jurisdiction to consider the offender a habitual delinquent.
Even if the accused is in fact a habitual delinquent but it is not alleged in t
he information, the prosecution when introducing evidence was objected to, the c
ourt cannot admit the evidence presented to prove habitual delinquency over the
objection of the accused. On the other hand, recidivism is a generic aggravating
circumstance. It need not be alleged in the information. Thus, even if recidivi
sm is not alleged in the information, if proven during trial, the court can appr
eciate the same. If the prosecution tried to prove recidivism and the defense ob
jected, the objection should be overruled. The reason is recidivism is a generic
aggravating circumstance only. As such, it does not have to be alleged in the i
nformation because even if not alleged, if proven during trial, the trial court
can appreciate it. Right now, the present rule is that it can be appreciated eve
n if not alleged in the information. This is the correct view because recidivism
is a generic aggravating circumstance. The reason why habitual delinquency cann
ot be appreciated unless alleged in the information is because recidivism has no
thing to do with the crime committed. Habitual delinquency refers to prior convi
ction and therefore this must be brought in the information before the court can
acquire jurisdiction over this matter. Generally, the procedure you know that w
hen the prosecutor alleges habitual delinquency, it must specify the crimes comm
itted, the dates when they were committed, the court which tried the case, the d
ate when the accused was convicted or discharged. If these are not alleged, the
information is defective. However, in a relatively recent ruling of the Supreme
Court, it was held that even though the details of habitual delinquency was not
set forth in the information, as long as there is an allegation there that the a
ccused is a habitual delinquent, that is enough to confer jurisdiction upon the
court to consider habitual delinquency. In the absence of the details set forth
in the information, the accused has the right to avail of the so-called bill of
particulars. Even in a criminal case, the accused may file a motion for bill of
particulars. If the accused fails to file such, he is deemed to have waived the
required particulars and so the court can admit evidence of the habitual delinqu
ency, even though over and above the objection of the defense.
It is necessary to allege recidivism in the information, but if the defense does
not object to the presentation of evidence during the trial and the same was pr
oven, the court shall consider such aggravating circumstance because it is only
generic. In recidivism, although the law defines it as a circumstance where a pe
rson having been convicted by final judgement was previously convicted also by f
inal judgement for a crime embraced in the same title in the Revised Penal Code,
it is necessary that the conviction must come in the order in which they are co
mmitted. Question & Answer In 1975, the offender committed robbery. While the sa
me was being tried in 1978, he committed theft. In 1980, he was convicted of the
ft and he did not appeal this decision. The trial for robbery ended in 1981. May
the judge in imposing the penalty for robbery consider the accused a recidivist
considering that he was already convicted in 1980 for the crime of theft which
is under the same title of the Revised Penal Code as that of robbery? No, becaus
e the robbery which was committed earlier would be decided later. It must be the
other way around. This is because in 1975 when he committed the robbery, there
was no crime committed yet. Thus, even though in imposing the penalty for the ro
bbery, there was already a previous conviction, if that conviction is subsequent

to the commission of the robbery, he is not a recidivist. If you will interpret

the definition of recidivism, this would seem to be covered but that is not so.
Habitual delinquency We have to consider the crimes in it and take note of the
titles of crimes in the Revised Penal Code. If the offender had committed and wa
s convicted of each of the crimes under each category so that no two crimes fall
under the same title of the Revised Penal Code, you have a situation where the
offender is a habitual delinquent but not a recidivist because no two crimes fal
l under the same title of the Code. If the first conviction is for serious physi
cal injuries or less serious physical injuries and the second conviction is for
robbery, theft or estafa and the third is for falsification, then the moment the
habitual delinquent is on his fourth conviction already, you cannot avoid that
he is a habitual delinquent and at the same time a recidivist because at least,
the fourth time will have to fall under any of the three categories.
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Vena V. Verga
Reiteracion This has nothing to do with the classification of the felonies. In r
eiteracion, the offender has already tasted the bitterness of the punishment. Th
is is the philosophy on which the circumstance becomes aggravating. It is necess
ary in order that there be reiteracion that the offender has already served out
the penalty. If the offender had not yet served out his penalty, forget about re
iteracion. That means he has not yet tasted the bitterness of life but if he had
already served out the penalty, the law expects that since he has already taste
d punishment, he will more or less refrain from committing crimes again. That is
why if the offender committed a subsequent felony which carries with it a penal
ty lighter than what he had served, reiteracion is not aggravating because the l
aw considers that somehow, this fellow was corrected because instead of committi
ng a serious crime, he committed a lesser one. If he committed another lesser on
e, then he becomes a repeater. So, in reiteracion, the penalty attached to the c
rime subsequently committed should be higher or at least equal to the penalty th
at he has already served. If that is the situation, that means that the offender
was never reformed by the fact that he already served the penalty imposed on hi
m on the first conviction. However, if he commits a felony carrying a lighter pe
nalty; subsequently, the law considers that somehow he has been reformed but if
he, again commits another felony which carries a lighter penalty, then he become
s a repeater because that means he has not yet reformed. You will only consider
the penalty in reiteracion if there is already a second conviction. When there i
s a third conviction, you disregard whatever penalty for the subsequent crimes c
ommitted. Even if the penalty for the subsequent crimes committed are lighter th
an the ones already served, since there are already two of them subsequently, th
e offender is already a repeater. However, if there is only a second conviction,
pay attention to the penalty attached to the crime which was committed for the
second crime. That is why it is said that reiteracion is not always aggravating.
This is so because if the penalty attached to the felony subsequently committed
is not equal or higher than the penalty already served, even if literally, the
offender is a repeater, repetition is not aggravating. Quasi-recidivism This is
found in Article 160. The offender must already be convicted by final judgement
and therefore to have served the penalty already, but even at this stage, he com
mitted a felony before beginning to serve sentence or while serving sentence. Il
Offender had already been convicted by final judgement. Sentence was promulgated
and he was under custody in Muntinlupa. While he was in Muntinlupa, he escaped
from his guard and in the course of his escape, he killed someone. The killing w
as committed before serving sentence but convicted by final judgement. He become
s a quasi-recidivist because the crime committed was a felony. The emphasis here
is on the crime committed before sentence or while serving sentence which shoul
d be a felony, a violation of the Revised Penal Code. In so far as the earlier c
rime is concerned, it is necessary that it be a felony. Illustration: The offend
er was convicted of homicide. While serving sentence in Muntinlupa, he was found
smoking marijuana. He was prosecuted for illegal use of prohibited drugs and wa
s convicted. Is he a quasi-recidivist? No, because the crime committed while ser
ving sentence is not a felony. Reverse the situation. Assume that the offender w
as found guilty of illegal use of prohibited drugs. While he was serving sentenc
e, he got involved in a quarrel and killed a fellow inmate. Is he a quasi-recidi
vist? Yes, because while serving sentence, he committed a felony. The emphasis i
s on the nature of the crime committed while serving sentence or before serving
sentence. It should not be a violation of a special law. Quasi-recidivism is a s
pecial aggravating circumstance. This cannot be offset by any mitigating circums
tance and the imposition of the penalty in the maximum period cannot be lowered
by any ordinary mitigating circumstance. When there is a privileged mitigating c
ircumstance, the penalty prescribed by law for the crime committed shall be lowe

red by 1 or 2 degrees, as the case may be, but then it shall be imposed in the m
aximum period if the offender is a quasirecidivist.
In consideration of a price, reward or promise The Supreme Court rulings before
indicate that this circumstance aggravates only the criminal liability of the pe
rson who committed the crime in consideration of the price, promise, or reward b
ut not the criminal liability of the person who gave the price, reward or consid
eration. However, when there is a promise, reward or price offered or given as a
consideration for the commission of the crime, the person making the offer is a
n inducer, a principal by inducement while the person receiving the price, rewar
d or promise who would execute the crime is a principal by direct participation.
Hence, their responsibilities are the same. They are both principals and that i
s why the recent rulings of the Supreme Court are to the effect that this aggrav
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circumstance affects or aggravates not only the criminal liability of the receiv
er of the price, reward or promise but also the criminal liability of the one gi
ving the offer. By means of inundation or fire Fire is not aggravating in the cr
ime of arson. Whenever a killing is done with the use of fire, as when to kill s
omeone, you burn down his house while the latter is inside, this is murder. Ther
e is no such crime as murder with arson or arson with homicide. The crime commit
ted is only murder. If the victim is already dead and the house is burned, the c
rime is arson. It is either arson or murder. If the intent is to destroy propert
y, the crime is arson even if someone dies as a consequence. If the intent is to
kill, there is murder even if the house is burned in the process. Illustration:
A and B were arguing about something. One argument led to another until A struc
k B to death with a bolo. A did not know that C, the son of B was also in their
house and who was peeping through the door and saw what A did. Afraid that A mig
ht kill him, too, he hid somewhere in the house. A then dragged B s body and pou
red gasoline on it and burned the house altogether. As a consequence, C was burn
ed and eventually died too. As far as the killing of B is concerned, it is homic
ide since it is noted that they were arguing. It could not be murder. As far as
the killing of C is concerned, the crime is arson since he intended to burn the
house only. No such crime as arson with homicide. Law enforcers only use this to
indicate that a killing occurred while arson was being committed. At the most,
you could designate it as death as a consequence of arson. Evident premeditation F
or evident premeditation to be aggravating, the following conditions must concur
: (1) (2) The time when the accused determined to commit the crime; An act manif
estly indicating that the accused has clung to his determination;
Vena V. Verga
Sufficient lapse of time between such determination and execution, to allow him
to reflect upon the consequences of his act.
Illustration: A, on Monday, thought of killing B on Friday. A knew that B is com
ing home only on Friday so A decided to kill B on Friday evening when he comes h
ome. On Thursday, A met B and killed him. Is there evident premeditation? None b
ut there is treachery as the attack was sudden. Can there be evident premeditati
on when the killing is accidental? No. In evident premeditation, there must be a
clear reflection on the part of the offender. However, if the killing was accid
ental, there was no evident premeditation. What is necessary to show and to brin
g about evident premeditation aside from showing that as some prior time, the of
fender has manifested the intention to kill the victim, and subsequently killed
the victim. Illustrations: A and B fought. A told B that someday he will kill B.
On Friday, A killed B. A and B fought on Monday but since A already suffered so
many blows, he told B, "This week shall not pass, I will kill you." On Friday,
A killed B. Is there evident premeditation in both cases? None in both cases. Wh
at condition is missing to bring about evident premeditation? Evidence to show t
hat between Monday and Friday, the offender clung to his determination to kill t
he victim, acts indicative of his having clung to his determination to kill B. A
and B had a quarrel. A boxed B. A told B, "I will kill you this week." A bought
firearms. On Friday, he waited for B but killed C instead. Is there evident pre
meditation? There is aberratio ictus. So, qualify. Insofar as B is concerned, th
e crime is attempted murder because there is evident premeditation. However, tha
t murder cannot be considered for C. Insofar as C is concerned, the crime is hom
icide because there was no evident premeditation. Evident premeditation shall no
t be considered when the crime refers to a different person other than the perso
n premeditated against. While it is true that evident premeditation may be absor
bed in treachery because the means, method and form of attack may be premeditate
d and would be resorted to by the offender. Do not consider both aggravating cir
cumstances of treachery and evident premeditation against the offender. It is on

ly treachery because the evident premeditation is the very conscious act of the
offender to ensure the execution. But there may be evident premeditation and the
re is treachery also when the attack was so sudden.
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A and B are enemies. They fought on Monday and parted ways. A decided to seek re
venge. He bought a firearm and practiced shooting and then sought B. When A saw
B in the restaurant with so many people, A did not dare fire at B for fear that
he might hit a stranger but instead, A saw a knife and used it to stab B with al
l suddenness. Evident premeditation was not absorbed in treachery because treach
ery refers to the manner of committing the crime. Evident premeditation is alway
s absorbed in treachery. This is one aggravating circumstance where the offender
who premeditated, the law says evident. It is not enough that there is some pre
meditation. Premeditation must be clear. It is required that there be evidence s
howing meditation between the time when the offender determined to commit the cr
ime and the time when the offender executed the act. It must appear that the off
ender clung to his determination to commit the crime. The fact that the offender
premeditated is not prima facie indicative of evident premeditation as the meet
ing or encounter between the offender and the offended party was only by chance
or accident. In order for evident premeditation to be considered, the very perso
n/offended party premeditated against must be the one who is the victim of the c
rime. It is not necessary that the victim is identified. It is enough that the v
ictim is determined so he or she belongs to a group or class who may be premedit
ated against. This is a circumstance that will qualify a killing from homicide t
o murder. Illustration: A person who has been courting a lady for several years
now has been jilted. Because of this, he thought of killing somebody. He, then b
ought a knife, sharpened it and stabbed the first man he met on the street. It w
as held that evident premeditation is not present. It is essential for this aggr
avating circumstance for the victim to be identified from the beginning. A preme
ditated to kill any member of particular fraternity. He then killed one. This is
murder a homicide which has been qualified into murder by evident premeditation
which is a qualifying circumstance. Same where A planned to kill any member of
the Iglesio ni Kristo. There are some crimes which cannot be aggravated by evide
nt premeditation because they require some planning before they can be committed
. Evident premeditation is part of the crime like kidnapping for ransom, robbery
with force upon things where there is entry into the premises of the offended p
arty, and estafa through false pretenses where the offender employs insidious me
ans which cannot happen accidentally. Craft
Vena V. Verga
Aggravating in a case where the offenders pretended to be bona fide passengers o
f a jeepney in order not to arouse suspicion, but once inside the jeepney, robbe
d the passengers and the driver (People v. Lee, decided on December 20, 1991). A
buse of superior strength There must be evidence of notorious inequality of forc
es between the offender and the offended party in their age, size and strength,
and that the offender took advantage of such superior strength in committing the
crime. The mere fact that there were two persons who attacked the victim does n
ot per se constitute abuse of superior strength (People v. Carpio, 191 SCRA 12).
Treachery Treachery refers to the employment of means, method and form in the c
ommission of the crime which tend directly and specially to insure its execution
without risk to himself arising from the defense which the offended party might
make. The means, method or form employed my be an aggravating circumstance whic
h like availing of total darkness in nighttime or availing of superior strength
taken advantage of by the offender, employing means to weaken the defense. Illus
tration: A and B have been quarreling for some time. One day, A approached B and
befriended him. B accepted. A proposed that to celebrate their renewed friendsh
ip, they were going to drink. B was having too much to drink. A was just waiting
for him to get intoxicated and after which, he stabbed B. A pretended to befrie
nd B, just to intoxicate the latter. Intoxication is the means deliberately empl
oyed by the offender to weaken the defense of the offended party. If this was th
e very means employed, the circumstance may be treachery and not abuse of superi
or strength or means to weaken the defense. What is the essence of treachery? Th
e essence of treachery is that by virtue of the means, method or form employed b
y the offender, the offended party was not able to put up any defense. If the of

fended party was able to put up a defense, even only a token one, there is no tr
eachery anymore. Instead some other aggravating circumstance may be present but
not treachery anymore. Illustration: A and B quarreled. However A had no chance
to fight with B because A is much smaller than B. A thought of killing B but the
n he cannot just attack B because
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of the latter s size. So, A thought of committing a crime at nighttime with the
cover of darkness. A positioned himself in the darkest part of the street where
B passes on his way home. One evening, A waited for B and stabbed B. However, B
pulled a knife as well and stabbed A also. A was wounded but not mortal so he ma
naged to run away. B was able to walk a few steps before he fell and died. What
crime was committed? The crime is only homicide because the aggravating circumst
ance is only nocturnity and nocturnity is not a qualifying circumstance. The rea
son why treachery cannot be considered as present here is because the offended p
arty was able to put up a defense and that negates treachery. In treachery, the
offended party, due to the means, method or form employed by the offender, the o
ffended party was denied the chance to defend himself. If because of the cover o
f darkness, B was not able to put up a defense and A was able to flee while B di
ed, the crime is murder because there is already treachery. In the first situati
on, the crime was homicide only, the nighttime is generic aggravating circumstan
ce. In the example where A pretended to befriend B and invited him to celebrate
their friendship, if B despite intoxication was able to put up some fight agains
t A but eventually, B died, then the attendant circumstance is no longer treache
ry but means employed to weaken the defense. But in murder, this is also a quali
fying circumstance. The crime committed is murder but then the correct circumsta
nce is not treachery but means employed to weaken the defense. In the same manne
r, if the offender avails of the services of men and in the commission of the cr
ime, they took advantage of superior strength but somehow, the offended party fo
ught back, the crime is still murder if the victim is killed. Although the quali
fying circumstance is abuse of superior strength and not treachery, which is als
o a qualifying circumstance of murder under Article 248. Treachery is out when t
he attack was merely incidental or accidental because in the definition of treac
hery, the implication is that the offender had consciously and deliberately adop
ted the method, means and form used or employed by him. So, if A and B casually
met and there and then A stabbed B, although stabbing may be sudden since A was
not shown to have the intention of killing B, treachery cannot be considered pre
sent. There must be evidenced on how the crime was committed. It is not enough t
o show that the victim sustained treacherous wound. Example: A had a gunshot wou
nd at the back of his head. The SC ruled this is only homicide because treachery
must be proven. It must be shown that the victim was totally defenseless. Sudde
nness of the attack does not by itself constitute treachery in the absence of ev
idence that the manner of the attack was consciously adopted by the
Vena V. Verga
offender to render the offended party defenseless (People v. Ilagan, 191 SCRA 64
3). But where children of tender years were killed, being one year old and 12 ye
ars old, the killing is murder even if the manner of attack was not shown (Peopl
e v. Gahon, decided on April 30, 1991). In People v. Lapan, decided on July 6, 1
992, the accused was prosecuted for robbery with homicide. Robbery was not prove
n beyond reasonable doubt. Accused held liable only for the killings. Although o
ne of the victims was barely six years old, the accused was convicted only for h
omicide, aggravated by dwelling and in disregard of age. Treachery not appreciat
ed where quarrel and heated discussion preceded a killing, because the victim wo
uld be put on guard (People v. Gupo). But although a quarrel preceded the killin
g where the victim was atop a coconut tree, treachery was considered as the vict
im was not in a position to defend himself (People v. Toribio). Distinction betw
een ignominy and cruelty Ignominy shocks the moral conscience of man while cruel
ty is physical. Ignominy refers to the moral effect of a crime and it pertains t
o the moral order, whether or not the victim is dead or alive. Cruelty pertains
to physical suffering of the victim so the victim has to be alive. In plain lang
uage, ignominy is adding insult to injury. A clear example is a married woman be
ing raped before the eyes of her husband. In a case where the crime committed is
rape and the accused abused the victims from behind, the Supreme Court consider
ed the crime as aggravated by ignominy. Hence, raping a woman from behind is ign
ominous because this is not the usual intercourse, it is something which offends

the moral of the offended woman. This is how animals do it. In a case of homici
de, while the victim after having been killed by the offender, the offender shov
ed the body inside a canal, ignominy is held aggravating. After having been kill
ed, the body was thrown into pile of garbage, ignominy is aggravating. The Supre
me Court held that it added shame to the natural effects of the crime. Cruelty a
nd ignominy are circumstances brought about which are not necessary in the commi
ssion of the crime. Illustration: A and B are enemies. A upon seeing B pulled ou
t a knife and stabbed B 60 times. Will that fact be considered as an aggravating
circumstance of cruelty?
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No, there is cruelty only when there are evidence that the offender inflicted th
e stab wounds while enjoying or delighted to see the victim in pain. For cruelty
to exist as an aggravating circumstance, there must be evidence showing that th
e accused inflicted the alleged cruel wounds slowly and gradually and that he is
delighted seeing the victim suffer in pain. In the absence of evidence to this
effect, there is no cruelty. Sixty stab wounds do not ipso facto make them aggra
vating circumstances of cruelty. The crime is murder if 60 wounds were inflicted
gradually; absence of this evidence means the crime committed is only homicide.
Cruelty is aggravating in rape where the offender tied the victim to a bed and
burnt her face with a lighted cigarette while raping her laughing all the way (P
eople v. Lucas, 181 SCRA 315). Unlawful entry Unlawful entry is inherent in the
crime of robbery with force upon things but aggravating in the crime of robbery
with violence against or intimidation of persons. Motor vehicle The Supreme Cour
t considers strictly the use of the word committed, that the crime is committed wi
th the use of a motor vehicle, motorized means of transportation or motorized wa
tercraft. There is a decision by the Court of Appeals that a motorized bicycle i
s a motor vehicle even if the offender used only the foot pedal because he does
not know how to operate the motor so if a bicycle is used in the commission of t
he crime, motor vehicle becomes aggravating if the bicycle is motorized. This ci
rcumstance is aggravating only when used in the commission of the offense. If mo
tor vehicle is used only in the escape of the offender, motor vehicle is not agg
ravating. To be aggravating, it must have been used to facilitate the commission
of the crime. Aggravating when a motorized tricycle was used to commit the crim
e Organized or syndicated crime group In the same amendment to Article 62 of the
Revised Penal Code, paragraphs were added which provide that the maximum penalt
y shall be imposed if the offense was committed by any person who belongs to an
organized or syndicated crime group.
Vena V. Verga
An organized or syndicated crime group means a group of two or more persons coll
aborating, confederating or mutually helping one another for purposes of gain in
the commission of a crime. With this provision, the circumstance of an organize
d or syndicated crime group having committed the crime has been added in the Cod
e as a special aggravating circumstance. The circumstance being special or quali
fying, it must be alleged in the information and proved during the trial. Otherw
ise, if not alleged in the information, even though proven during the trial, the
court cannot validly consider the circumstances because it is not among those e
numerated under Article 14 of the Code as aggravating. It is noteworthy, however
, that there is an organized or syndicated group even when only two persons coll
aborated, confederated, or mutually helped one another in the commission of a cr
ime, which acts are inherent in a conspiracy. Where therefore, conspiracy in the
commission of the crime is alleged in the information, the allegation may be co
nsidered as procedurally sufficient to warrant receiving evidence on the matter
during trial and consequently, the said special aggravating circumstance can be
appreciated if proven. Alternative circumstances Four alternative circumstances
(1) (2) (3) (4) Relationship; Intoxication; Degree of instruction; and Education
Use only the term alternative circumstance for as long as the particular circums
tance is not involved in any case or problem. The moment it is given in a proble
m, do not use alternative circumstance, refer to it as aggravating or mitigating
depending on whether the same is considered as such or the other. If relationsh
ip is aggravating, refer to it as aggravating. If mitigating, then refer to it a
s such. Except for the circumstance of intoxication, the other circumstances in
Article 15 may not be taken into account at all when the circumstance has no bea
ring on the crime committed. So the court will not consider this as aggravating
or mitigating simply because the circumstance has no relevance to the crime that
was committed. Do not think that because the article says that these circumstan
ces are mitigating or aggravating, that if the circumstance is present, the cour

t will have to take it as mitigating, if not mitigating, aggravating. That is wr

ong. It is only the circumstance of intoxication which if not mitigating, is aut
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aggravating. But the other circumstances, even if they are present, but if they
do not influence the crime, the court will not consider it at all. Relationship
may not be considered at all, especially if it is not inherent in the commission
of the crime. Degree of instruction also will not be considered if the crime is
something which does not require an educated person to understand. Relationship
Relationship is not simply mitigating or aggravating. There are specific circum
stances where relationship is exempting. Among such circumstances are: (1) (2) I
n the case of an accessory who is related to the principal within the relationsh
ip prescribed in Article 20; Also in Article 247, a spouse does not incur crimin
al liability for a crime of less serious physical injuries or serious physical i
njuries if this was inflicted after having surprised the offended spouse or para
mour or mistress committing actual sexual intercourse. Those commonly given in A
rticle 332 when the crime of theft, malicious mischief and swindling or estafa.
There is no criminal liability but only civil liability if the offender is relat
ed to the offended party as spouse, ascendant, or descendant or if the offender
is a brother or sister or brother in law or sister in law of the offended party
and they are living together. Exempting circumstance is the relationship. This i
s an absolutory cause.
Vena V. Verga
this reason is not present, intoxication will not be considered mitigating. So t
he mere fact that the offender has taken one or more cases of beer of itself doe
s not warrant a conclusion that intoxication is mitigating. There must be indica
tion that because of the alcoholic intake of the offender, he is suffering from
diminished self control. There is diminished voluntariness insofar as his intell
igence or freedom of action is concerned. It is not the quantity of alcoholic dr
ink. Rather it is the effect of the alcohol upon the offender which shall be the
basis of the mitigating circumstance. Illustration: In a case, there were two l
aborers who were the best of friends. Since it was payday, they decided to have
some good time and ordered beer. When they drank two cases of beer they became m
ore talkative until they engaged in an argument. One pulled out a knife and stab
bed the other. When arraigned he invoked intoxication as a mitigating circumstan
ce. Intoxication does not simply mean that the offender has partaken of so much
alcoholic beverages. The intoxication in law requires that because of the qualit
y of the alcoholic drink taken, the offender had practically lost self control.
So although the offender may have partaken of two cases of beer, but after stabb
ing the victim he hailed a tricycle and even instructed the driver to the place
where he is sleeping and the tricycle could not reach his house and so he has to
alight and walk to his house, then there is no diminished self control. The Sup
reme Court did not give the mitigating circumstance because of the number of wou
nds inflicted upon the victim. There were 11 stab wounds and this, the Supreme C
ourt said, is incompatible with the idea that the offender is already suffering
from diminished self control. On the contrary, the indication is that the offend
er gained strength out of the drinks he had taken. It is not the quantity of dri
nk that will determine whether the offender can legally invoke intoxication. The
conduct of the offender, the manner of committing the crime, his behavior after
committing the crime must show the behavior of a man who has already lost contr
ol of himself. Otherwise intoxication cannot legally be considered. Degree of in
struction and education These are two distinct circumstances. One may not have a
ny degree of instruction but is nevertheless educated. Example: A has been livin
g with professionals for sometime. He may just be a maid in the house with no de
gree of instruction but he may still be educated. It may happen also that the of
fender grew up in a family of professionals, only he is the black sheep because
he did not want to go to school. But it does not follow that he is bereft of edu
cation. If the offender did not go higher than Grade 3 and he was involved in a
felony, he was invoking lack of degree of education. The Supreme Court held that
although he did not receive schooling, yet it cannot be said that he lacks

Sometimes, relationship is a qualifying and not only a generic aggravating circu

mstance. In the crime of qualified seduction, the offended woman must be a virgi
n and less than 18 yrs old. But if the offender is a brother of the offended wom
an or an ascendant of the offended woman, regardless of whether the woman is of
bad reputation, even if the woman is 60 years old or more, crime is qualified se
duction. In such a case, relationship is qualifying. Intoxication This circumsta
nce is ipso facto mitigating, so that if the prosecution wants to deny the offen
der the benefit of this mitigation, they should prove that it is habitual and th
at it is intentional. The moment it is shown to be habitual or intentional to th
e commission of the crime, the same will immediately aggravate, regardless of th
e crime committed. Intoxication to be considered mitigating, requires that the o
ffender has reached that degree of intoxication where he has no control of himse
lf anymore. The idea is the offender, because of the intoxication is already act
ing under diminished self control. This is the rational why intoxication is miti
gating. So if
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education because he came from a family where brothers are all professionals. So
he understands what is right and wrong. The fact that the offender did not have
schooling and is illiterate does not mitigate his liability if the crime commit
ted is one which he inherently understands as wrong such as parricide. If a chil
d or son or daughter would kill a parent, illiteracy will not mitigate because t
he low degree of instruction has no bearing on the crime. In the same manner, th
e offender may be a lawyer who committed rape. The fact that he has knowledge of
the law will not aggravate his liability, because his knowledge has nothing to
do with the commission of the crime. But if he committed falsification, that wil
l aggravate his criminal liability, where he used his special knowledge as a law
yer. (a)
Vena V. Verga
PEOPLE vs. LUAGUE Keyword: Woman about to be raped while her husband was at work
. Victim, jumping from the window fell on some stones. Issue: W/N the defendant
is entitled on grounds of legitimate selfdefense. Decision: Yes. The defendants a
ct constitutes a justifying circumstance since: Aside from the right to life on
which rests the legitimate defense of our person, we have the right to property
acquired by us, and the right to honor which is not the least prized of our patr
imony. All the requisites of exempting circumstance are present and should be ta
. APEGO Keyword: Paranoid sister, couple coming from Nasugbu, husband stabbed at
the vital organ by the sister with fan knife and TIN CANS. Issue: W/N the defen
dant can plead complete self-defense. Decision: When a sleeping woman is awakene
d at night by some one touching her or grasping her arm, and she, believing that
some person is attempting to abuse her asks who the intruder is and receives no
reply, attacks the said person with a pocketknife, and the nature of the wound
shows that she was either standing up or sitting up at the time, it is concluded
that, notwithstanding the woman s belief in the supposed attempt, there was not
sufficient provocation to justify her in using a deadly weapon; although she ac
tually believed it to be the beginning of an attempt against her, she was not wa
rranted in making such a deadly assault, as the injured person did not insist or
repeat any act which could be considered as an attempt against her honor. The a
ccused exceeded her right of self-defense since there was really no need of woun
ding the victim. There was no reasonable cause for striking a blow in the center
of the body where the vital parts are located. Thus, in the commission of the c
rime, there was present the circumstance of incomplete exemption from responsibi
lity since the second requisite is missing. KILLING OF PARAMOUR NOT ATTRIBUTABLE
PEOPLE vs. NARVAEZ Keywords: fencing, gaddemit!, land dispute, self-defense Issue:
Can the defendant, after admitting having shot the deceased from the window of
his house with a shotgun under the foregoing circumstances claim that he did so
in defense of his person and his rights and therefore he should be exempted from
criminal liability. Decision: No. defense of ones person or rights is treated as
a justifying circumstance under Article 11 , paragraph 1 of the RPC, but in ord
er for it to be appreciated, the following requisite should be present: unlawful
aggression, reasonable necessity of the means employed to prevent or repel it a

nd lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person defending himself. T

here is no question that there was aggression on the part of the victims: one of
the deceased ordering while the other actually participating in the fencing. Th
e third element is also present. However, reasonableness of the resistance is al
so a requirement of the justifying circumstance of self-defense or defense of on
e s rights under paragraph I of Article 11, Revised Penal Code. When the appella
nt fired his shotgun from his window, killing his two victims, his resistance wa
s disproportionate to the attack. Appellant is therefore guilty beyond reasonabl
e doubt of only two (2) homicides, mitigated by the privileged extenuating circu
mstance of incomplete self-defense. (1) WHEN KILLING FOR HONOR HELD JUSTIFIED.
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PEOPLE vs. MOJICA PEOPLE vs. POTESTAS Keywords: Woman kills her paramour who was
not her live-in partner saying that the latter tried to rape her. Issue: W/N th
e woman can plead self-defense considering that the man seems to be asleep when
he was killed. Decision: When it is proven that the deceased had for some time m
aintained illicit relations with the accused, being accustomed to pass the night
in her house, it cannot be believed that it was necessary for him to resort to
violence, and therefore a statement alleging such violence is improbable and ina
dmissible as a basis for an exemption from liability, upon the ground that the a
ccused in committing the homicide acted in self-defense. The crime having been c
ommitted by the owner of the house against the person who had by mutual consent
frequented the house, and at a time when they were both in bed, the circumstance
of nocturnity cannot be considered because the nighttime was not purposely sele
cted by the accused. i. Unlawful Aggression When present Attempt to rape a woman
PEOPLE VS. LUAGUE, SUPRA US vs. DOMEN Keyword: Fight over a carabao, striking w
ith a Japanese wood and inflicting with a tuba knife causing the victims death. Iss
ue: W/N there is a reasonable necessity for the means employed to repel the atta
ck. Decision: Yes. There was reasonable necessity for the means employed by X to
repel the attack. The ancient common law rule in homicide was denominated retrea
t to the wall. This doctrine make it the duty of a person assailed to retreat as
far as he can before he is justified in meeting force with force. This principle
has now given way in the US to stand ground when in the right rule. Accused did n
ot provoke the assault. The law did not require the accused to retreat. The elem
ent of practicability made it impossible for him to determine during the heat of
a sudden attack whether he would increase or diminish the risk to which exposed
by standing his ground or stepping aside. The resistance was not disappropriate
to the assault thus the accused is exempted from criminal liability because he
acted in legitimate defense of his person. Keywords: Constabulary versus Police.
threatened by the constabulary.
Vena V. Verga
Defendant was a police
Issue: W/N the defendant can maintain that he killed the victim in self-defense
and that he is exempt from criminal liability. Decision: Yes. There was no provo
cation on the defendants part. A policeman in the performance of his duty must st
and his ground and cannot take refuge in flight when attacked. His duty requires
him to overcome his opponent and the force he may exert therefore differs somew
hat from that which ordinarily may be offered in self-defense. Under the circums
tances, the force employed by the defendant was reasonably necessary and that he
acted in legitimate self-defense. PEOPLE vs. ALCONGA Keywords: Gambling, defend
ant cheated the victim. Victim became so angry and threatened to inflict harm on
the defendant. Guards. Issue: W/N the defendant is entitled to acquittal for ha
ving killed the victim in the exercise of his right of self-defense. Decision: N
o. There were two stages in the fight. In the initial stage, the deceased assaul
ted the defendant but the latter was able to resist the aggression. When the dec
eased retreated, there was no longer any danger to the life of the accused but t
he latter pursued him and inflicted many additional wounds. An accused was no lo
nger acting in self-defense when he pursued and killed a fleeing adversary, thou
gh originally the unlawful aggressor, there being then no more aggression to def
end against, the same having ceased from the moment the deceased took to his hee
ls. Since one of the ingredients of self-defense is missing, complete self-defen
se cannot be invoked. PEOPLE vs. LAUREL Keywords: Stolen kiss. Both men accused
each other for starting the fight. Issue: W/N it was the defendant who was the a
ssailant. Decision: Considering the preceding relations between the contending p
arties, it is the offended party who was directly or indirectly affected and who
would naturally be interested in demanding an explanation and therefore in seek
ing the interview, so that when they meet it is to be presumed that such offende
d party, when not satisfied with the

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explanation offered, would be the aggressor, and this presumption is confirmed b
y the evidence. The victim then can invoke self-defense. PEOPLE VS. CABUNGCAL Ke
ywords: ROCK THE BOAT! Issue: W/N the defendant is completely exempted from all
criminal liability. Decision: Yes. The appellant having acted in defense of his
wife and child and the other passengers in the boat in striking the deceased wit
h an oar in order to make him desist from trying to upset the boat, and the mean
s employed having been reasonably necessary in this defense, while it was at the
cost of the life of the deceased, he is completely exempt from criminal liabili
ty. US vs. SUBINGSUBING Keywords: 78 year old man aided by another man to parry
the blows of X who made unchaste proposals to the old mans wife. Issue: W/N the p
erson who aided the old man by furnishing a weapon to the latter makes the forme
r liable for homicide. Decision: No. Where the one, who used the weapon, was dec
lared to be exempt from responsibility in repelling the attack of which he was t
he victim and in wounding his assailant therewith, the logical consequence of th
at declaration of exemption from responsibility is that the other, who furnished
the legitimate weapon used in his defense should be also acquitted and declared
exempt from any responsibility. If one who defends a third person under the con
ditions and with the requisites the penal law lays down for exempting him from r
esponsibility should be acquitted of the charge in a case prosecuted against him
, then when a person who did nothing more than furnish a weapon to one whom he s
aw in peril and in great need of defending himself and repelling a serious assau
lt, it is illogical and unjust to deny to said assistant the same exemption from
responsibility and the exoneration granted the slayer on the grounds of self-de
fense, as was held in the same judgment to be lawful and right. PEOPLE vs. DELIM
A Keywords: Escapee who was killed by a policeman while ordering the latter to s
urrender. Issue: W/N the policeman should be held liable
Vena V. Verga
Decision: No. The killing was done in the performance f a duty. The deceased was
under the obligation to surrender and had no right after evading service of his
sentence, to commit assault and disobedience with a weapon in the hand, which a
lthough the policeman to resort to such an extreme means which, although it prov
ed to be fatal, was justified by the circumstance. Policeman committed no crime.
VALCORZA vs. PEOPLE Keywords: Detention prisoner charged of stealing chickens.
Poultry area. Police only tried to hit the victim on the leg but unfortunately h
it him on the back. The deceased did not head several warning shots. Issue: W/N
the action of the defendant can be justified. Decision: The act performed was co
mmitted in the performance of official duty and was more or less necessary to pr
event the escaping prisoner from successfully eluding the officers of the law. T
o hold the accused guilty of homicide may have the effect of demoralizing police
officers discharging official functions identical or similar to those in the pe
rformance of which petitioner was engaged at the time he fired at the deceased,
with the result that thereafter, there would be halfhearted and dispirited effor
ts on their part to comply with such official duty. This would be a great detrim
ent to public interest. PEOPLE vs. BONOAN Keywords: barbershop, insanity Ill kill
you, Ill pay you Issue: W/N the prosecution have the burden of proving that the accu
sed was sane at the time he committed the crime. Decision: No. In the Philippine
s, the burden, to be sure, is on the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable do
ubt that the defendant committed the crime, but sanity is presumed, and when a d
efendant in a criminal case interposes the defense of mental incapacity, the bur
den of establishing that fact rests upon him. In the case at bar, the defense in
terposed being that the defendant was insane at the time he killed the deceased,
the obligation of proving that affirmative allegation rests on the defense. HOW
INSANITY IS PROVED In order to ascertain a person s mental condition at the tim
e of the act, it is permissible to receive evidence of the condition of his mind
a reasonable period both before and after that time. Direct testimony is not re
quired nor are specific acts of derangement essential to establish insanity as a
defense. Mind can only be known by outward acts. Thereby, we read the thoughts,
the motives and emotions of a person and come to determine whether his sets con

form to the practice of

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people of sound mind. To prove insanity, therefore, circumstantial evidence, if
clear and convincing, suffice (People vs. Bonoan). PEOPLE vs. RENEGADO Keywords:
Insane security guard. Slave-driver teacher who asked the guard to type test qu
estionnaires. Issue: W/N the defendant can be acquitted with the argument that h
e should be exempted from criminal liability on account of insanity. Decision: N
o. For purposes of disposing of appellant s defense it becomes necessary to rest
ate certain basic principles in criminal law, viz. that a person is criminally l
iable for a felony committed by him; that a felonious or criminal act (delito do
loso) is presumed to have been done with deliberate intent, that is, with freedo
m intelligence, and malice because the moral and legal presumption is that freed
om and intelligence constitute the normal condition of a person in the absence o
f evidence to the contrary; that one of the causes which will overthrow this pre
sumption of voluntariness and intelligence is insanity in which even the actor i
s exempt from criminal liability as provided for in Article 12, paragraph 1, of
the Revised Penal Code. In the eyes of the law, insanity exist when there is a c
omplete deprivation of intelligence in committing the act, that is, the accused
is deprived of reason, he acts without the least discernment because there is a
complete absence of the power to discern, or that there is a total deprivation o
f freedom of the will; mere abnormality of the mental faculties will not exclude
imputability. The onus probandi rest upon him who invokes insanity as an exempt
ing circumstances and he must prove it by clear and positive evidence. Applying
these principles, defense fails. US vs. KNIGHT Keyword: chauffer of US Army. Chi
ld was run over while the defendant was trying to overtake. Issue: W/N the defen
dant should be charged for reason of reckless negligence. Decision: No. One pers
on is not compelled to travel behind another on the highway, and one has not the
exclusive right to precede another. The traveler may pass to the front when he
has good and sufficient grounds to believe that he can do so in safety. Whatever
may have been the cause of an automobile accident, if it cannot be attributed t
o the misconduct or the negligence of the operator in the management of his mach
ine, he cannot be held liable either civilly or criminally. US vs. ELICANAL
Vena V. Verga
Keyword: Captain killed by shipmates. Impulse of uncontrollable fear of a greate
r injury should the defendant refuse. Issue: W/N the defendant can invoke that h
e was acting under the impulse if an uncontrollable fear of a greater injury. De
cision: Chief mate did not exercise influence over the accused. Before a force c
an be considered to be an irresistible one, or must produce such an effect upon
the individual that in spite of all resistance, it reduces him to a mere instrum
ent. The defense in a criminal action that the defendant in committing the crime
acted under the impulse of an uncontrollable fear produced by a threat of an eq
ual or greater injury to himself can be held to be sustained, it must appear tha
t the threat which caused the fear was of an evil greater that, or at least equa
l to that which he was required to commit and that it promised an evil of such g
ravity and imminence that it might be said, that the, ordinary man would have su
cceeded to it. US vs. VICENTILLO Keywords: illegal detention; unfortunate circum
stances than prolonged the detention; trivial crime committed by X to a municipa
l president. Issue: W/N the municipal president can be found guilty of illegal an
d arbitrary detention of the accused for a period of three days. Decision: No. Th
e case of U. S. vs. Fortaleza followed as to the authority of a municipal presid
ent to make an arrest without a warrant for an offense committed in his presence
, the municipal president being held to have all the usual powers of a public of
ficer for the making of arrests without warrant. Under all the circumstances of
this case, as set forth in the opinion, the defendant, after having arrested the
complaining witness without a warrant, brought him before a justice of the peac
e as soon as "practicable" thereafter, notwithstanding the fact that three days
were expended in doing so. In the absence of all evidence to the contrary, this
court will not presume that, in a particular case of defiance of local authority
by the unlawful violation of a local ordinance even where the offense thus comm

itted is, in itself, trivial and unimportant, it may not have been necessary or
at least expedient to make an arrest and bring the offender forthwith before the
proper judicial officer. PEOPLE vs. BANDIAN Keywords: infanticide; baby killed
by animal bites; abandonment
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Vena V. Verga
circumstances to the same person if he is of compos mentis. Under the delusion t
est, an insane person believes in a state of things, the existence of which no r
ational person would believe. A person acts under an irresistible impulse when,
by reason of duress or mental disease, he has lost the power to choose between r
ight and wrong, to avoid the act in question, his free agency being at the time
destroyed. Under the right and wrong test, a person is insane when he suffers fr
om such perverted condition of the mental and moral faculties as to render him i
ncapable of distinguishing between right and wrong. So far, under our jurisdicti
on, there has been no case that lays down a definite test or criterion for insan
ity. However, We can apply as test or criterion the definition of insanity under
Section 1039 of the Revised Administrative Code, which states that insanity is
"a manifestation in language or conduct, of disease or defect of the brain, or a
more or less permanently diseased or disordered condition of the mentality, fun
ctional or organic, and characterized by perversion, inhibition, or by disordere
d function of the sensory or of the intellective faculties, or by impaired or di
sordered volition." Insanity as defined above is evinced by a deranged and perve
rted condition of the mental faculties, which is manifested in language or condu
ct. An insane person has no full and clear understanding of the nature and conse
quence of his act. Thus, insanity may be shown by surrounding circumstances fair
ly throwing light on the subject, such as evidence of the alleged deranged perso
n s general conduct and appearance, his acts and conduct inconsistent with his p
revious character and habits, his irrational acts and beliefs, and his improvide
nt bargains. Evidence of insanity must have reference to the mental condition of
the person whose sanity is in issue, at the very time of doing the act, which i
s the subject of inquiry. However, it is permissible to receive of his mental co
ndition for a reasonable period both before and after the time of the act in que
stion. Direct testimony is not required nor the specific acts of derangement ess
ential to establish insanity as a defense. The vagaries of the mind can only be
known by outward acts: thereby we read the thoughts, motives and emotions of a p
erson; and through which we determine whether his acts conform to the practice o
LVING PLEA OF INSANITY Generally, in criminal cases, every doubt is resolved in
favor of the accused. However, in the defense of insanity, doubt as to the fact
of insanity should be resolved in favor of sanity. The burden of proving the aff
irmative allegation of insanity rests on the defense. Thus: In considering the p
lea of insanity as a defense in a prosecution for crime, the starting premise is
that the law presumes all persons to be of sound mind. Otherwise stated, the la
w presumes all acts to be voluntary, and that it is improper to presume that act
s were done
Issue: W/N the mother can be held liable for infanticide and or abandonment of a
minor. Decision: Infanticide and abandonment of a minor, to be punishable, must
be committed willfully or consciously, or at least it must be the result of a v
oluntary, conscious and, free act or omission. Even in cases where said crimes a
re committed through mere imprudence, the person who commits them, under said ci
rcumstance, must be in the full enjoyment of his mental faculties, or must be co
nscious of his acts, in order that he may be held liable. The law exempts from c
riminal liability any person who acts under the circumstances in which the appel
lant acted in this case, by giving birth to a child in a thicket and later aband
oning it, not because of imprudence or any other cause than that she was overcom
e by severe dizziness and extreme debility, with no fault or intention on her pa
rt. She has in her favor the fourth and seventh exempting circumstances. PEOPLE
vs. DUNGO Keywords: confined in a mental hospital for insanity but found sane wh
ile perpetuating the crime. Hiding a deadly weapon and embarking to evade arrest
are conscious adoption of the pattern to kill. DAR employee killed. Issue: W/N
the defendant can be acquitted on the grounds of insanity. Decision: One who suf
fers from insanity at the time of the commission of the offense charged cannot i

n a legal sense entertain a criminal intent and cannot be held criminally respon
sible for his acts. His unlawful act is the product of a mental disease or a men
tal defect. In order that insanity may relieve a person from criminal responsibi
lity, it is necessary that there be a complete deprivation of intelligence in co
mmitting the act, that is, that the accused be deprived of cognition; that he ac
ts without the least discernment; that there be complete absence or deprivation
of the freedom of the will (People vs. Puno). The fact that the defendant rememb
ered his acts proves that he was not insane or if insane, his insanity admitted
of lucid intervals. Insanity in law exists when there is a complete deprivation
of intelligence. DISTINGUISH INSANITY FROM SANITY It is difficult to distinguish
from insanity. There no definite defined border between sanity and insanity. Un
der foreign jurisdiction, there are three major criteria in determining the exis
tence of insanity, namely: delusion test, irresistible impulse test, and the rig
ht and wrong test. Insane delusion is manifested by a false belief for which the
re is no reasonable basis and which would be incredible under the given
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unconsciously. Whoever, therefore, invokes insanity as a defense has the burden
of proving its existence. The quantum of evidence required to overthrow the pres
umption of sanity is proof beyond reasonable doubt. Insanity is a defense in a c
onfession and avoidance, and as such must be proved beyond reasonable doubt. Ins
anity must be clearly and satisfactorily proved in order to acquit an accused on
the ground of insanity. Appellant has not successfully discharged the burden of
overcoming the presumption that he committed the crime as charged freely, knowi
ngly, and intelligently. Lastly, the State should guard against sane murderer es
caping punishment through a general plea of insanity. (People vs. Dungo). PEOPLE
vs. RAFANAN Keywords: Schizophrenic person pleading not guilty for the crime of
rape. Accused confined in the mental hospital after the incident. Seclusive who
allege that he hears sounds, which he described as parang ibon, tinig ng ibon. Is
sue: W/N the defendant can be acquitted of the charge of rape on the ground that
he was suffering from a mental disorder called schizophrenia at the time he com
mitted the crime. Decision: No. The allegation of insanity or imbecility must be
clearly proved. Without positive evidence that the defendant had previously los
t his reason or was demented, a few moments prior to or during the perpetration
of the crime, it will be presumed that he was in normal condition. Acts penalize
d by law are always refuted to be voluntary, and it is improper to conclude that
a person acted unconsciously, in order to relieve him from liability, on the ba
sis of his mental condition, unless his insanity and absence of will are proved.
The standard set out in Formigones were commonly adopted in subsequent case, na
mely: (a) the tests of cognition-"complete deprivation of intelligence in commit
ting the [criminal] act," and (b) the test of violation-"or that there be a tota
l deprivation of freedom of the will." But our case law shows common reliance on
the test of cognition, rather than on the test relating to "freedom of the will
;" examination of the case law has failed to turn up any case where this Court h
as exempted an accused on the sole ground that he was totally deprived of "freed
om of the will," i.e., without an accompanying "complete deprivation of intellig
ence." This is perhaps to be expected since person s volition naturally reaches
out only towards that which is presented as desirable by his intelligence, wheth
er that intelligence be diseased be healthy. In any case, where the accused fail
ed to show complete impairment or loss of intelligence, the Court has recognized
at most a mitigating, not an exempting, circumstance in accord with Article 13(
9) of the Revised Penal Code. "Such illness of the offender as would diminish th
e exercise of the willpower of the offender without however depriving him of the
consciousness of his Acts." The law presumes every man to be sane. A
Vena V. Verga
person accused of a crime has the burden of proving his affirmative allegation o
f insanity. AGGARVATING AND MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCES US vs. HICKS Keyword: AfroAmerican soldier and Moro woman having an illicit affair. The woman found anothe
r man. Jealousy. Evident premeditation. Issue No 1: W/N murder was committed. De
cision: The above-stated facts, which have been fully proven in the present case
, constitute the crime of murder, defined and punished by article 403 of the Pen
al Code, in that the woman Agustina Sola met a violent death, with the qualifyin
g circumstance of treachery (alevosia), she being suddenly and roughly attacked
and unexpectedly fired upon with a 45-caliber revolver, at close, if not point b
lank range, while the injured woman was unarmed and unprepared, and at a time wh
en she was listening to a conversation, in which she was concerned, between her
aggressor and a third person, and after usual and customary words had passed bet
ween her and her aggressor. From all of the foregoing it is logically inferred t
hat means, manners, and forms were employed in the attack that directly and spec
ially insured the consummation of the crime without such risk to the author ther
eof as might have been offered by the victim who, owing to the suddenness of the
attack, was doubtless unable to flee from the place where she was standing, or
even escape or divert the weapon. Issue No. 2: W/N Evident premeditation can be
appreciated. Decision: Yes. The circumstance of premeditation can be appreciated
but should only be considered as merely a generic one. Premeditation is, howeve

r, manifest and evident by reason of the open acts executed by the accused. All
the foregoing circumstances conclusively prove that the accused, deliberately an
d after due reflection had resolved to kill the woman who had left him for anoth
er man, and in order to accomplish his perverse intention with safety, notwithst
anding the fact that he was already provided with a clean and well-prepared weap
on and carried other loaded cartridges besides those already in his revolver, he
entered the house, greeting everyone courteously and conversed with his victim,
in what appeared to be a proper manner, disguising his intention and calming he
r by his apparent repose and tranquility, doubtless in order to successfully acc
omplish his criminal design, behaving himself properly as he had planned to do b
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Issue No 3: W/N the accused can invoke loss of reason and selfcontrol produced b
y jealousy. Decision: No. The only causes which mitigate the criminal responsibi
lity for the loss of self-control are such as originate from legitimate feelings
, not those which arise from vicious, unworthy, and immoral passions. US vs. DEL
A CRUZ Keywords: Due to heat of passion, a man kills his concubine upon discover
ing that she had carnal communication with another man. Issue No. 1: W/N the cir
cumstances can be considered an extenuation of his criminal liability. Decision:
Yes. The commission of the offense of which defendant was convicted was marked
with the extenuating circumstance defined in subsection 7 of article 9, in that
defendant "acted upon an impulse so powerful as naturally to have produced passi
on and obfuscation," the evidence disclosing that in the heat of passion he kill
ed the deceased, who had theretofore been his querida (concubine or lover), upon
discovering her in flagrante in carnal communication with a mutual acquaintance
. Issue No 2: W/N this case can be decided based on Hicks case. Decision: No. In
the former case the cause of the alleged "passion and obfuscation" of the aggres
sor was the convict s vexation, disappointment and anger engendered by the refus
al of the woman to continue to live in illicit relations with him, which she had
a perfect right to do, his reason for killing her being merely that she had ele
cted to leave him and with his full knowledge to go and live with another. In th
e case at bar the impulse upon which the defendant acted, and which naturally pr
oduced "passion and obfuscation," was not that the woman declined to have illici
t relations with him, but the sudden revelation that she was untrue to him, and
his discovery of her in flagrante in the arms of another. As said by the supreme
court of Spain in the above cited decision, this was a "sufficient impulse" in
the ordinary and natural course of things to produce the passion and obfuscation
which the law declares to be one of the extenuating circumstances to be taken i
nto consideration by the court. PEOPLE vs. YUMAN Keyword: Man refused to go back
to his live-in partner. that woman; penknife Issue No. 1: W/N the woman committed
a crime.
Vena V. Verga
Decision: Yes. Her act of mortally wounding her lover had not been precede by ag
gression on the part of the latter. There is no occasion to speak her of the reas
onable necessity of the means employed to prevent or repel it", nor is it necess
ary to inquire whether or not there was "sufficient provocation" on the part of
the one invoking legitimate self-defense because both circumstances presuppose u
nlawful aggression, which, we repeat, was not present in the instant case. Issue
No. 2: W/N a slight pushing of the head which hurt the woman can be considered
a mitigating circumstance: Decision: No. A slight push of the head with the hand
-which, according to her was the cause that led her to stab him, such act does n
ot constitute the unlawful aggression mentioned by the Code, to repel which it i
s lawful to employ a means of defense which may be reasonably necessary. "Consid
ering that an unlawful aggression. as a fundamental requisite of self-defense is
not necessarily implied in any act of aggression against a particular person, w
hen the author of the same does not persist in his purpose or when he desists th
erefrom to the extent that the person attacked is no longer in peril. Issue No.
3: W/N she is entitled to a mitigating circumstance of lack of intention to caus
e grave injury. . Decision: No. The stab-wound inflicted upon the deceased by th
e accused was not only mortal, but the victim thus wounded and running away was
also pursued by the accused, knife in hand, and- the latter would perhaps have i
nflicted upon him other wounds had it not been for the timely arrival of policem
an who calmed her bellicose attitude and placed her under arrest. This marked ob
stinacy of the accused in her aggression clearly reveals her intention to cause
to its full extent the injury she has committed. Issue No. 4: W/N the defendant
is entitled circumstance that she acted under obfuscation. to a mitigating
Decision: Yes. This mitigating circumstance should be taken into consideration i
n favor of the accused, in view of the peculiar circumstances of the case, espec

ially the fact that the accused had been abandoned by the deceased after living
together for three or four years, and the harsh treatment which the deceased gav
e the accused on the afternoon of the day in question, a short time before the a
ggression. Issue No 5: W/N she entitled to the mitigating circumstance of volunt
ary surrender to the authorities.
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Decision: No. Under the circumstance, it would be an error to take into consider
ation this circumstance. Issue No. 6: W/N she is entitled to a mitigating circum
stance of lack of instruction. Decision: Yes. The defendant is a mere wage-earne
r and could not even sign her statement before the police and had to affix her t
humb mark. PEOPLE vs. BELLO Keyword: Old man; kaingero; induced his young bride
to work as a public hostess. Woman refused to give support and was seeing anothe
r man. 5 glasses of tuba; White slave trade. Issue No.1: W/N treachery can be ap
preciated in order to qualify the crime to murder. Decision: While it cannot be
denied that Alicia was stabbed at the back, the wound was but a part and continu
ation of the aggression. The four (4) stab wounds were inflicted indiscriminatel
y, without regard as to which portion of her body was the subject of attack. The
trial court itself found that the stab in the back was inflicted as the victim
was running away. For this reason, treachery cannot be imputed Issue No. 2: W/N
there is evident premeditation. Decision: Evident premeditation was, likewise, n
ot established.. The accused had been carrying a balisong with him for a long ti
me as a precaution against drunkards, and without any present plan or intent to
use it against his commonlaw wife. That he watched her movements daily manifeste
d his jealous character, but there is no evidence that from this jealousy sprout
ed a plan to snuff out her life. Issue No. 3: W/N the crime can be qualified by
abuse of superior strength. Decision: No. The evidence does not show, either, an
y superior strength on the part of the accused, and, not possessing it, he could
not take advantage of it. True that he was armed with a balisong, but he was ol
d and baldado (invalid), while Alicia was in the prime of her youth, and not inf
irm. The facts are not sufficient to draw a comparison of their relative strengt
h. Possession of a balisong gives an aggressor a formidable advantage over the u
narmed victim, but the physique of the aggressor ought also to be considered. At
any rate, taking into account the emotional excitement of the accused, it is no
t clearly shown that there was "intencin deliberada de prevalerse de la superiori
dad aprovecharse intencionadamente de la misma" i.e., deliberate intent to take
advantage of superior strength.
Vena V. Verga
Issue No. 4: W/N nighttime maybe appreciated as aggravating circumstance. Decisi
on: No. The crime was committed at nighttime, but the accuse did no seek or take
advantage of it to better accomplish his purpose. In fact, the place was bright
and well lighted; hence the circumstance did not aggravate the crime. Issue no.
5: W/N the can be aggravating circumstance of abuse of confidence and obvious u
ngratefulness. Decision: No. There is nothing to show that the assailant and his
common-law wife reposed in one another any special confidence that could be abu
sed, or any gratitude owed by one to the other that ought to be respected, and w
hich would bear any relation, or connection, with the crime committed. None is i
nferable from the fact that the accused was much older than his victim, or that
he was penniless while she was able to earn a living and occasionally gave him m
oney, since, both lived together as husband and wife. Neither is it shown that t
he accused took advantage of any such special confidence in order to carry out t
he crime. Issue No. 6: W/N the accused can claim a mitigating circumstance of ha
ving acted on provocation strong to cause passion and obfuscation. Decision: Yes
. It will be recalled that the lower court found that the accused had previously
reproved the deceased for allowing herself to be caressed by a stranger. Her lo
ose conduct was forcibly driven home to the accused by a remark he heard on the
very day of the crime that the accused was the husband "whose wife was being use
d by Maring for purposes of prostitution", a remark that so deeply wounded the a
ppellant s feelings that he was driven to consume a large amount of wine (tuba)
before visiting the deceased to plead with her to leave her work. Alicia s insul
ting refusal to renew her liaison with the accused, therefore, was not motivated
by any desire to lead a chaste life henceforth, but showed her determination to
pursue a lucrative profession that permitted her to distribute her favors indis
criminately. We can not see how the accused s insistence that she live with him

again, and his rage at her rejection of the proposal, can be properly qualified
as arising from immoral and unworthy passions. Even without benefit of wedlock,
a monogamous liaison appears morally of a higher level than gainful promiscuity.
PEOPLE vs. MACBUL Keywords: habitual delinquent; stealing two sacks of papers w
hich belong to the Provincial Government of Sulu. Mitigating circumstance of ple
a of guilt and extreme poverty.
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Issue: W/N the court erred in considering the defendant a habitual delinquent. D
ecision: Yes. A person shall be deemed to be habitually delinquent, if within a
period of ten years from the date of his release or last conviction of the crime
s of robo, hurto, estafa, or falsificacin, he is found guilty of any of said crim
es a third time or oftener." Therefore, appellant s first conviction, cannot be
taken into account because his second conviction took place fourteen years later
. Hence within the purview of habitual delinquents, one previous conviction agai
nst him, namely, that last one. Issue No. 2: circumstance. W/N extreme poverty c
an be appreciated as a mitigating PEOPLE vs. ONG
Vena V. Verga
Keyword: Debt; Kidnapped, stabbed to death and buried. Victim even made a propos
al of love to the wife of the accused in lieu the latters gambling debt. Issue: W
/N the accused be held liable for the crimes of kidnapping and murder. Decision:
No. The crime was murder only. There was no illegal detention and victim was ki
lled and promptly buried. On the basis of the foregoing evidence, the accused ca
n hardly be held liable for kidnapping as well. It may not be amiss to state tha
t an accused is entitled to acquittal unless his guilt is shown by proof beyond
reasonable doubt. (Rule 133, Section 1, Revised Rules of Court). The evidence at
hand hardly satisfied the requirement of proof beyond reasonable doubt as to th
e charge of kidnapping. The necessary result is that the accused can he held lia
ble only for the killing of the victim. In other words, the time interval when t
he deceased was actually deprived of his liberty was short and the same was only
incidental to the main objective of murdering him. Issue No 2: W/N treachery ca
n be appreciated in qualifying the crime to murder. Decision: Yes. Treachery (al
evosia) qualified the killing to murder. Undisputed facts show that the victims h
ands were tied and his mouth was gagged with a flannel cloth before he was stabb
ed twice with an icepick and buried in a shallow grave near a creek. These facts
portray well that the tied hands of the victim rendered him defenseless and hel
pless thereby allowing the accused to commit the crime without risk at all to th
eir person. Issue: W/N treachery can be appreciated as regards the two other acc
used who did not do the actual stabbing. Decision: Conspiracy, connivance and un
ity of purpose and intention among the accused were present throughout in the ex
ecution of this crime. The four participated in the planning and execution of th
e crime and were at the scene in all its stages. They cannot escape the conseque
nce of any of their acts even if they deviated in some detail from what they ori
ginally thought of. Conspiracy implies concert of design and not participation i
n every detail of execution. Thus, treachery should be considered against all pe
rsons participating or cooperating in the perpetration of the crime. Issue No. 3
: W/N the aggravating circumstance of nighttime can be absorbed in treachery.
Decision: Yes. This court approves it, recognizing the immanent principle that t
he right to life is more sacred than a mere property right. That is not to encou
rage or even countenance theft but merely to dull somewhat the keen and pain-pro
ducing edges of the stark realities of life.
PEOPLE vs. DY POL Keyword: falsification of public document; reduction of penalt
y due to mitigating circumstance of plea of guilty and lack of irreparable mater
ial damage. Issue: W/N the accused is entitled to a mitigating circumstance of p
lea of guilt. Decision: Yes. The plea of guilty spontaneously entered by the acc
used prior to the presentation of the evidence for the prosecution constitutes m
itigating circumstance. Issue No. 2: W/N the accused can invoke the fact that no
irreparable material damage was caused to the offended part in the commission o
f the crime. Decision: No. The mitigating circumstance so invoked, which is that
the crime committed by the accused has caused no irreparable material damage to
the offended party, is not recognized by the RPC. Neither is it among those whi
ch may be considered as similar nature and analogous to those expressly recogniz
ed in accordance with Article 13 section 10 and therefore it cannot correctly be

taken into consideration.

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Decision: It is clear that appellants took advantage of nighttime in committing
the felonies charged. Inasmuch as the treachery consisted in the fact that the v
ictims hands were tied at the time they were beaten, the circumstance of nightt
ime is not absorbed in treachery, but can be perceived distinctly therefrom, sin
ce the treachery rests upon an independent factual basis. A special case therefo
re is present to which the rule that nighttime is absorbed in treachery does not
apply. This aggravating circumstance was correctly appreciated by the lower cou
rt regardless of whether or not the same was purposely and deliberately sought b
y the accused for it is clear that the darkness of the night facilitated the com
mission of the crime and was taken advantage of by them. Issue: W/N the purposiv
e selection of uninhabited place be appreciated. Decision: The place was ideal n
ot merely for burying the victim but also for killing him for it was a place whe
re the possibility of the victim receiving some help from third persons was comp
letely absent. The accused sought the solitude of the place in order to better a
ttain their purpose without interference, and to secure themselves against detec
tion and punishment. The purposive selection of an uninhabited place is thus cle
ar from the evidence. Issue No. 5: W/N the aggravating circumstance of abuse of
confidence can be appreciated. Decision: In order for this circumstance to obtai
n, it is necessary that there be a relation of trust and confidence between the
accused and the one against whom the crime was committed, and that the accused m
ade use of such relation to commit the crime. It is essential too that the confi
dence be a means of facilitating the commission of the crime, the culprit taking
advantage of the offended party s belief that the former would not abuse said c
onfidence. The accused and the victim were together that night in the nightclub
as well as in the car not because of said confidence. It was merely because the
accused had some accounts to settle with him. Issue No. 6: W/N the use of motor
vehicle be appreciated as aggravating circumstance. Decision: Yes. The motor veh
icle facilitated the stark happening. It has been held that the use of a motor v
ehicle is aggravating in murder where the said vehicle was used in transporting
the victim and the accused. Issue No. 7: W/N cruelty can be appreciated as an ag
gravating circumstance. Decision: No. Cruelty (ensaamiento), is an aggravating ci
rcumstance, cannot be considered here. The brief of the Acting Solicitor General
agrees with that of the accused in denying the attendance of cruelty as an aggr
avating circumstance. Indeed, as it appears from the record, the group intended
Vena V. Verga
to kill the victim, bury him, and flee from the locale of the fearful crime. For
cruelty to exist, it must be shown that the accused enjoyed and delighted in ma
king their victim suffer slowly and gradually, causing him unnecessary physical
or moral pain in the consummation of the criminal act. Even granting that the vi
ctim died because of asphyxiation when he was buried and not hemorrhage from sta
b wounds, it appears that the victim s burial was not meant to make him suffer a
ny longer but simply to conceal his body and the crime itself. Issue No. 8: W/N
there is evident premeditation. Decision: Yes. the qualifying circumstance of ev
ident premeditation (premeditacion conocida) attended the commission of the crim
e. The accused meditated and tenaciously persisted in the accomplishment of the
crime and were not prompted merely by the impulse of the moment. Issue: W/N the
plead of guilt can be used as a mitigating circumstance. Decision: Yes. Since th
e kidnapping portion of the crime cannot be appreciated beyond reasonable doubt,
it would appear that the plead of guilty to this information naturally would be
most unfair to the accused since the penalty would be that of capital punishmen
t. The accused showed signs of remorsefulness upon his arrest when he cooperated
with the police authorities in the solution of the crime. Issue: W/N the accuse
d can be credited with any mitigating circumstance. Decision: The accused Benjam
in Ong is likewise is entitled to the mitigating circumstance that is analogous
to passion and obfuscation (Art. 13, par. 10, Revised Penal Code). US vs. GAMAO
Keywords: Priest killed in exchange of a sum of money. Inducement by the uncle;
nephew refused the money but nonetheless carried on with the crime. Issue: W/N t

he aggravating circumstance that the accused forced or induced his nephew to mur
der the priest by hire or reward be appreciated. Decision: No. The record does n
ot show beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused was forced or induced to comm
it this crime. It is true that he owed his uncle a sum of money and the latter c
ould have used these obligations in order to force his nephew to commit the crim
e but it has not been shown beyond reasonable doubt that the uncle actually hire
d his nephew to kill the deceased since the nephew rejected the offer. Issue No.
2: Was the crime properly classified as murder?
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Decision: Yes. The deceased received the fatal blow while he was in the dark spa
ce between the door and the stairs leading to the upper portion of the convent.
He was unable to see by whom the blow was struck. He had no opportunity to offer
any resistance whatever. The murderer taking advantage of the darkness was lyin
g in wait for his victim, thereby employing means or methods in the execution of
this crime which tended directly and specially to insure its execution without
risk to himself, arising from the defense which the priest might make. These fac
ts clearly establish the qualifying circumstance of alevosia in so far as the ac
cused is concerned. Issue No. 3: W/N extreme ignorance can be used as a mitigati
ng circumstance. Decision: Yes. Owing to his extreme ignorance, the SC was compe
lled to give him the benefits of the mitigating circumstance of lack of discreti
on since it was shown the nephew was a poor ignorant fisherman and only depends
on his uncle for subsistence. Issue No. 4: W/N the uncle should be considered as
a principal by induction. Decision: Yes. The nephew merely depends on his uncle
for his subsistence while the latter was found to be a man of great influence.
He hated the Roman Catholic Church and called a meeting in his house where the q
uestion of murdering the priest was discussed. He selected his nephew to commit
the crime and dominated all who were present. The influence exercised by the unc
le over his nephew was so great and powerful that the latter could not resist it
. There can be no question that the latter was directly induced by his uncle to
kill the priest. PEOPLE vs. DE LA ROSA Keywords: demonstration; FEATI; security
guard threw a pillbox hitting one of the demonstrators in the head. Issue No. 1:
W/N the act of the accused can be characterized as murder and multiple attempte
d murder Decision: Yes. The crime committed is murder with multiple attempted mu
rder qualified by the use of explosive. Issue No. 2: W/N the aggravating circums
tance of treachery be appreciated as well. Decision: Yes. Issue No 3: W/N the ac
cused be credited with aggravating circumstance of lack of intention to commit s
o grave a wong as that actually done. Decision: No. II. I. INTOXICATION WHEN MIT
Vena V. Verga
US vs. FITZGERALD Facts: The accused and the victim had a dispute in a distiller
y. It can be deduced that both are intoxicated. The victim (Marsh) struck Fitzge
rald, which knocked the latter down. Fitzgerald immediately arose, and saying I w
ill show you sons of bs, ran toward the ice plant in search of a revolver and retu
rned. After which, he saw Marsh and fired at him. Marsh died soon after. Issue:
W/N a mitigating circumstance can be considered. Decision: In the presence of pr
oof to the contrary, it will be presumed that intoxication is not habitual, and
the fact that the accused was drunk at the time of the commission of the crime m
ust then be considered as a mitigating circumstance. Also, where it appears that
the accused fired a loaded revolver at the deceased and killed him, it must be
presumed that he intended the natural consequences of his act, and he is not ent
itled to the benefit of the mitigating circumstance established by the Penal Cod
e. Provocation on the part of Marsh cannot be considered as a mitigating circums
tance since there was no evidence how the quarrel arose. Nor can the fact that t
he homicide was immediately preceded by an affray between the deceased and the d
efendant may be considered as a mitigating circumstance. No other mitigating cir
cumstance can be appreciated in his favor for one who attacks another with a dea
dly weapon as a revolver must know that the most probable result of such an aggr
ession is the death of the person attacked. Accused is only entitled to a mitiga
ting defense of intoxication. ii) DEFINING HABITUAL DRUNKARD AS ONE GIVEN TO INT
Facts: McMann and on McKay (one the victims) were packers at Camp Vicars in Mind

anao. McMann and McKay went to the house of a Moro to get some matches with whic
h to light their cigarettes however, the owners of the house would not allow the
m to enter. McMann then saw another Moro who was carving the head of a bolo. McM
ann snatched the bolo cutting the latters
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fingers. The moro then reported McMann to the authorities. Thereafter, the Moro,
McMann and McKay found themselves waiting in a room (not clear if they were wai
ting to be investigated, but they were all together during that time). McMann su
ddenly fired at McKay hitting the latter. When the Moro tried to run, Mcmann als
o fired at him. Issue: W/N intoxication may be considered a mitigating circumsta
nce. Decision: It is unlikely that the shooting was accidental since he witnesse
s testified that they say McMann aiming the gun at Mac Kays head. It is probable
that McMann was actually going to shoot the Moro but because he was drunk at tha
t time, killed Mac Kay instead. Clearly, defendant cannot claim lack of intentio
n. The court also held that the defendant was drunk at the time the crime was co
mmitted. But intoxication in this case cannot be considered as a mitigating circ
umstance since the defendant is a habitual drunkard. Habitual drunkard is define
d as one who habituated to intemperance whenever the opportunity offered ACCUSED
Uncle killed his niece to taste human flesh; banana
Vena V. Verga
Decision: Yes. The commission of the crime was attended by aggravating circumsta
nce of disregard of the respect due the offended party on account of her sex. Is
sue No. 4: W/N Ignominy can be added to the natural effects of the act. Decision
. No. Nothing in the record shows that before the deceased died, she was subject
ed to such indignities as would cause her shame or moral suffering. Issue No. 5:
W/N the fact that the victim was the niece of the accused aggravate the crime.
Decision: No. The alternative circumstance of relationship shall be taken into c
onsideration only when the offended party is the spouse, ascendant, descendant,
legitimate, natural or adopted brother or sister or relative by affinity in the
same degree of the offended. Issue No. 6: W/N there are any mitigating circumsta
nce that can be appreciated in favor of the accused. Decision: Yes. The circumst
ance of his having made a voluntary plea of guilt before the court of evidence b
y the prosecution. PERSONS WHO ARE CRIMINALLY LIABLE Under the Revised Penal Cod
e, when more than one person participated in the commission of the crime, the la
w looks into their participation because in punishing offenders, the Revised Pen
al Code classifies them as: (1) (2) (3) principal; accomplice; or accessory.
Issue No. 1: W/N it can be contended that three years after the commission of th
e crime, that the court should have subjected the accused to some psychiatric te
st to determine his sanity. Decision: No. The record constitutes sufficient just
ification for the conclusion that the accused was not insane at the time of the
commission of the crime. The accused had made several statements which were redu
ced into writing and signed by him. The facts and circumstances narrated by the
accused in those different statements tally in important details. The accused vo
luntarily admitted his guilt. Since the accused was charged of having killed the
deceased for more than three years ago, it is not possible now to ascertain the
mental condition of the defendant as of the time when he committed the crime of
which he is charged. Issue No. 2: W/N the accused used superior strength. Decis
ion: Yes. The attendant circumstance qualifies the crime committed as murder. Is
sue No. 3: W/N sex can be appreciated as an aggravating circumstance against the
This classification is true only under the Revised Penal Code and is not used un
der special laws, because the penalties under the latter are never graduated. Do
not use the term principal when the crime committed is a violation of special l
aw. Only use the term offender. Also only classify offenders when more than one to
ok part in the commission of the crime to determine the proper penalty to be imp
osed. So, if only one person committed a crime, do not use principal. Use the off
enders, culprits, or the accused. When a problem is encountered where there are sever
al participants in the crime, the first thing to find out is if there is a consp
iracy. If there is, as a general rule, the criminal liability of all will be the

same, because the act of one is the act of all.

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However, if the participation of one is so insignificant, such that even without
his cooperation, the crime would be committed just as well, then notwithstandin
g the existence of a conspiracy, such offender will be regarded only as an accom
plice. The reason for this ruling is that the law favors a milder form of crimin
al liability if the act of the participant does not demonstrate a clear perversi
ty. As to the liability of the participants in a felony, the Code takes into con
sideration whether the felony committed is grave, less grave, or light. When the
felony is grave, or less grave, all participants are criminally liable. But whe
re the felony is only light only the principal and the accomplice are liable. Th
e accessory is not. But even the principal and the accomplice will not be liable
if the felony committed is only light and the same is not consummated unless su
ch felony is against persons or property. If they are not and the same is not co
nsummated, even the principal and the accomplice are not liable. Therefore it is
only when the light felony is against person or property that criminal liabilit
y attaches to the principal or accomplice, even though the felony is only attemp
ted or frustrated, but accessories are not liable for liable for light felonies.
Principal by accomplice indispensable cooperation distinguished from an
Vena V. Verga
In the first situation, the facts indicate that if the fellow who held the legs
of the victim and spread them did not do so, the offender on top could hardly pe
netrate because the woman was strong enough to move or resist. In the second sit
uation, the son was much bigger than the woman so considering the strength of th
e son and the victim, penetration is possible even without the assistance of the
father. The son was a robust farm boy and the victim undernourished. The act of
the father in holding the legs of the victim merely facilitated the penetration
but even without it the son would have penetrated. The basis is the importance
of the cooperation to the consummation of the crime. If the crime could hardly b
e committed without such cooperation, then such cooperation would bring about a
principal. But if the cooperation merely facilitated or hastened the consummatio
n of the crime, this would make the cooperator merely an accomplice. In a case w
here the offender was running after the victim with a knife. Another fellow came
and blocked the way of the victim and because of this, the one chasing the vict
im caught up and stabbed the latter at the back. It was held that the fellow who
blocked the victim is a principal by indispensable cooperation because if he di
d not block the way of the victim, the offender could not have caught up with th
e latter. In another case, A was mauling B. C, a friend of B tried to approach b
ut D stopped C so that A was able to continuously maul B. The liability of the f
ellow who stopped the friend from approaching is as an accomplice. Understandabl
y he did not cooperate in the mauling, he only stopped to other fellow from stop
ping the mauling. In case of doubt, favor the lesser penalty or liability. Apply
the doctrine of pro reo. Principal by inducement Concept of the inducement one
strong enough that the person induced could hardly resist. This is tantamount to
an irresistible force compelling the person induced to carry out the execution
of the crime. Ill advised language is not enough unless he who made such remark
or advice is a co-conspirator in the crime committed. While in the course of a q
uarrel, a person shouted to A, Kill him! Kill him. A killed the other fellow. Is t
he person who shouted criminally liable. Is that inducement? No. It must be stro
ng as irresistible force. There was a quarrel between two families. One of the s
ons of family A came out with a shotgun. His mother then shouted, Shoot!. He shot
and killed someone. Is the mother liable? No. Examples of inducement:
It is not just a matter of cooperation, it is more than if the crime could hardl
y be committed. It is not that the crime would not be committed because if that
is what you would imply it becomes an ingredient of the crime and that is not wh
at the law contemplates. In the case of rape, where three men were accused, one
was on top of the woman, one held the hands, one held the legs, the Supreme Cour
t ruled that all participants are principals. Those who held the legs and arms a
re principals by indispensable cooperation. The accused are father and son. The

father told his son that the only way to convince the victim to marry him is to
resort to rape. So when they saw the opportunity the young man grabbed the woman
, threw her on the ground and placed himself on top of her while the father held
both legs of the woman and spread them. The Supreme Court ruled that the father
is liable only as an accomplice. The point is not just on participation but on
the importance of participation in committing the crime.
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I will give you a large amount of money. I will not marry you if you do not kill B(l
et us say he really loves the inducer). They practically become co-conspirators.
degree of inducement anymore. Therefore you do not look into the
Vena V. Verga
One cannot be an accessory unless he knew of the commission of the crime. One mu
st not have participated in the commission of the crime. The accessory comes int
o the picture when the crime is already consummated. Anyone who participated bef
ore the consummation of the crime is either a principal or an accomplice. He can
not be an accessory. When an offender has already involved himself as a principa
l or accomplice, he cannot be an accessory any further even though he performs a
cts pertaining to an accessory. Accessory as a fence The Revised Penal Code defi
nes what manners of participation shall render an offender liable as an accessor
y. Among the enumeration is by profiting themselves or by assisting the offender
to profit by the effects of the crime. So the accessory shall be liable for the s
ame felony committed by the principal. However, where the crime committed by the
principal was robbery or theft, such participation of an accessory brings about
criminal liability under Presidential Decree No. 1612 (Anti-Fencing Law). One w
ho knowingly profits or assists the principal to profit by the effects of robber
y or theft is not just an accessory to the crime, but principally liable for fen
cing under Presidential Decree No. 1612. Any person who, with intent to gain, ac
quires and/or sell, possesses, keeps or in any manner deals with any article of
value which he knows or should be known to him to be the proceeds of robbery or
theft is considered a fence and incurs criminal liability for fencing under said dec
ree. The penalty is higher than that of a mere accessory to the crime of robbery
or theft. Likewise, the participation of one who conceals the effects of robber
y or theft gives rise to criminal liability for fencing, not simply of an accessor
y under paragraph 2 of Article 19 of the Code. Mere possession of any article of
value which has been the subject of robbery or theft brings about the presumpti
on of fencing. Presidential Decree No. 1612 has, therefore, modified Article 19 of
the Revised Penal Code. Questions & Answers 1. May one who profited out of the
proceeds of estafa or malversation be prosecuted under the Anti-Fencing Law? No.
There is only a fence when the crime is theft or robbery. If the crime is embez
zlement or estafa, still an accessory to the crime of estafa, not a fence.
In People v. Balderrama, Ernesto shouted to his younger brother Oscar, Birahin mo
na, birahin mo na. Oscar stabbed the victim. It was held that there was no consp
iracy. Joint or simultaneous action per se is not indicia of conspiracy without
showing of common design. Oscar has no rancor with the victim for him to kill th
e latter. Considering that Ernesto had great moral ascendancy and influence over
Oscar being much older, 35 years old, than the latter, who was 18 yrs old, and
it was Ernesto who provided his allowance, clothing as well as food and shelter,
Ernesto is principal by inducement. In People v. Agapinay, 186 SCRA 812, the on
e who uttered Kill him, we will bury him, while the felonious aggression was takin
g place cannot be held liable as principal by inducement. Utterance was said in
the excitement of the hour, not a command to be obeyed. In People v. Madali, 188
SCRA 69, the son was mauled. The family was not in good graces of the neighborh
ood. Father challenged everybody and when neighbors approached, he went home to
get a rifle. The shouts of his wife Here comes another, shoot him cannot make the
wife the principal by inducement. It is not the determining cause of the crime i
n the absence of proof that the words had great dominance and influence over the
husband. Neither is the wifes act of beaming the victim with a flashlight indisp
ensable to the commission of the killing. She assisted her husband in taking goo
d aim, but such assistance merely facilitated the felonious act of shooting. Con
sidering that it was not so dark and the husband could have accomplished the dee
d without his wifes help, and considering further that doubts must be resolved in
favor of the accused, the liability of the wife is only that of an accomplice.
Accessories Two situations where accessories are not criminally liable: (1) (2)
When the felony committed is a light felony; When the accessory is related to th

e principal as spouse, or as an ascendant, or descendant or as brother or sister

whether legitimate, natural or adopted or where the accessory is a relative by
affinity within the same degree, unless the accessory himself profited from the
effects or proceeds of the crime or assisted the offender to profit therefrom.
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2. If principal committed robbery by snatching a wristwatch and gave it to his w
ife to sell, is the wife criminally liable? Can she be prosecuted as an accessor
y and as a fence? The liability of the wife is based on her assisting the princi
pal to profit and that act is punishable as fencing. She will no longer be liabl
e as an accessory to the crime of robbery. In both laws, Presidential Decree No.
1612 and the Revised Penal Code, the same act is the basis of liability and you
cannot punish a person twice for the same act as that would go against double j
eopardy. Acquiring the effects of piracy or brigandage It is relevant to conside
r in connection with the criminal liability of accessories under the Revised Pen
al Code, the liability of persons acquiring property subject of piracy or brigan
dage. The act of knowingly acquiring or receiving property which is the effect o
r the proceeds of a crime generally brings about criminal liability of an access
ory under Article 19, paragraph 1 of the Revised Penal Code. But if the crime wa
s piracy of brigandage under Presidential Decree No. 533 (Anti-piracy and AntiHi
ghway Robbery Law of 1974), said act constitutes the crime of abetting piracy or
abetting brigandage as the case may be, although the penalty is that for an acc
omplice, not just an accessory, to the piracy or brigandage. To this end, Sectio
n 4 of Presidential Decree No. 532 provides that any person who knowingly and in
any manner acquires or receives property taken by such pirates or brigands or in
any manner derives benefit therefrom shall be considered as an accomplice of the
principal offenders and be punished in accordance with the Rules prescribed by
the Revised Penal Code. It shall be presumed that any person who does any of the
acts provided in this Section has performed them knowingly, unless the contrary
is proven. Although Republic Act No. 7659, in amending Article 122 of the Revis
ed Penal Code, incorporated therein the crime of piracy in Philippine territoria
l waters and thus correspondingly superseding Presidential Decree No. 532, Secti
on 4 of the Decree which punishes said acts as a crime of abetting piracy or bri
gandage, still stands as it has not been repealed nor modified, and is not incon
sistent with any provision of Republic Act No. 7659. Destroying the corpus delic
ti When the crime is robbery or theft, with respect to the second involvement of
an accessory, do not overlook the purpose which must be to prevent discovery of
the crime.
Vena V. Verga
The corpus delicti is not the body of the person who is killed, even if the corp
se is not recovered, as long as that killing is established beyond reasonable do
ubt, criminal liability will arise and if there is someone who destroys the corp
us delicti to prevent discovery, he becomes an accessory. Harboring or concealin
g an offender In the third form or manner of becoming an accessory, take note th
at the law distinguishes between a public officer harboring, concealing or assis
ting the principal to escape and a private citizen or civilian harboring conceal
ing or assisting the principal to escape. In the case of a public officer, the c
rime committed by the principal is immaterial. Such officer becomes an accessory
by the mere fact that he helped the principal to escape by harboring or conceal
ing, making use of his public function and thus abusing the same. On the other h
and, in case of a civilian, the mere fact that he harbored concealed or assisted
the principal to escape does not ipso facto make him an accessory. The law requ
ires that the principal must have committed the crime of treason, parricide, mur
der or attempt on the life of the Chief Executive. If this is not the crime, the
civilian does not become an accessory unless the principal is known to be habit
ually guilty of some other crime. Even if the crime committed by the principal i
s treason, or murder or parricide or attempt on the life of the Chief Executive,
the accessory cannot be held criminally liable without the principal being foun
d guilty of any such crime. Otherwise the effect would be that the accessory mer
ely harbored or assisted in the escape of an innocent man, if the principal is a
cquitted of the charges. Illustration: Crime committed is kidnapping for ransom.
Principal was being chased by soldiers. His aunt hid him in the ceiling of her
house and aunt denied to soldiers that her nephew had ever gone there. When the
soldiers left, the aunt even gave money to her nephew to go to the province. Is

aunt criminally liable? No. Article 20 does not include an auntie. However, this
is not the reason. The reason is because one who is not a public officer and wh
o assists an offender to escape or otherwise harbors, or conceals such offender,
the crime committed by the principal must be either treason, parricide murder o
r attempt on the life of the Chief executive or the principal is known to be hab
itually guilty of some other crime. The crime committed by the principal is acce
ssory who harbors, conceals knowing person is a public officer, the nature of ma
terial is that he used his public function determinative of the liability of the
that the crime is committed. If the the crime is immaterial. What is in assisti
ng escape.
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However, although under paragraph 3 of Article 19 when it comes to a civilian, t
he law specifies the crimes that should be committed, yet there is a special law
which punishes the same act and it does not specify a particular crime. Preside
ntial Decree No. 1829, which penalizes obstruction of apprehension and prosecuti
on of criminal offenders, effective January 16, 1981, punishes acts commonly ref
erred to as obstructions of justice. This Decree penalizes under Section 1(c) ther
eof, the act, inter alia, of (c) Harboring or concealing, or facilitating the esc
ape of any person he knows or has reasonable ground to believe or suspect, has c
ommitted any offense under existing penal laws in order to prevent his arrest, p
rosecution and conviction. Here, there is no specification of the crime to be com
mitted by the offender for criminal liability to be incurred for harboring, conc
ealing, or facilitating the escape of the offender, and the offender need not be
the principal unlike paragraph 3, Article 19 of the Code. The subject acts may
not bring about criminal liability under the Code, but under this decree. Such a
n offender if violating Presidential Decree No. 1829 is no longer an accessory.
He is simply an offender without regard to the crime committed by the person ass
isted to escape. So in the problem, the standard of the Revised Penal Code, aunt
is not criminally liable because crime is kidnapping, but under Presidential De
cree No. 1829, the aunt is criminally liable but not as an accessory. Whether th
e accomplice and the accessory may be tried and convicted even before the princi
pal is found guilty. There is an earlier Supreme Court ruling that the accessory
and accomplice must be charged together with the principal and that if the latt
er be acquitted, the accomplice and the accessory shall not be criminally liable
also, unless the acquittal is based on a defense which is personal only to the
principal. Although this ruling may be correct if the facts charged do not make
the principal criminally liable at all, because there is no crime committed. Yet
it is not always true that the accomplice and accessory cannot be criminally li
able without the principal first being convicted. Under Rule 110 of the Revised
Rules on Criminal Procedure, it is required that all those involved in the commi
ssion of the crime must be included in the information that may be filed. And in
filing an information against the person involved in the commission of the crim
e, the law does not distinguish between principal, accomplice and accessory. All
will be accused and whether a certain accused will be principal or accomplice o
r accessory will depend on what the evidence would show as to his involvement in
the crime. In other words, the liability of the accused will depend on the quan
tum of evidence adduced by the prosecution against the particular accused. But t
he prosecutor must initiate proceedings versus the principal. Even if the princi
pal is convicted, if the evidence presented against a supposed accomplice or a s
upposed accessory does not meet the required proof beyond reasonable doubt, then
said accused will be acquitted. So the criminal liability
Vena V. Verga
of an accomplice or accessory does not depend on the criminal liability of the p
rincipal but depends on the quantum of evidence. But if the evidence shows that
the act done does not constitute a crime and the principal is acquitted, then th
e supposed accomplice and accessory should also be acquitted. If there is no cri
me, then there is no criminal liability, whether principal, accomplice, or acces
sory. Under paragraph 3, Article 19, take note in the case of a civilian who har
bors, conceals, or assists the escape of the principal, the law requires that th
e principal be found guilty of any of the specified crimes: treason, parricide,
etc. The paragraph uses the particular word guilty. So this means that before the
civilian can be held liable as an accessory, the principal must first be found g
uilty of the crime charged, either treason, parricide, murder, or attempt to tak
e the life of the Chief Executive. If the principal is acquitted, that means he
is not guilty and therefore, the civilian who harbored, concealed or assisted in
the escape did not violate art. 19. That is as far as the Revised Penal Code is
concerned. But not Presidential Decree No. 1829. This special law does not requ
ire that there be prior conviction. It is a malum prohibitum, no need for guilt,
or knowledge of the crime. In Taer v. CA, accused received from his co-accused

two stolen male carabaos. Conspiracy was not proven. Taer was held liable as an
accessory in the crime of cattle rustling under Presidential Decree No. 533. [Ta
er should have been liable for violation of the Anti-fencing law since cattle ru
stling is a form of theft or robbery of large cattle, except that he was not cha
rged with fencing.] In Enrile v. Amin, a person charged with rebellion should no
t be separately charged under Presidential Decree No. 1829. The theory of absorp
tion must not confine itself to common crimes but also to offenses punished unde
r special laws which are perpetrated in furtherance of the political offense. PE
NALTIES Measures of prevention not considered as penalty The following are the m
easures of prevention or safety which are not considered penalties under Article
24: (1) The arrest and temporary detention of accused persons as well as their
detention by reason of insanity or imbecility or illness requiring their confine
ment in a hospital. The commitment of a minor to any of the institutions mention
ed in art. 80 for the purposes specified therein. Suspension from the employment
or public office during the trial or in order to institute proceedings.
(2) (3)
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(4) Fines and other corrective measures which, in the exercise of their administ
rative disciplinary powers, superior officials may impose upon their subordinate
s. Deprivation of rights and reparations which the civil laws may establish in p
enal form.
Vena V. Verga
So, if the accused has actually undergone preventive imprisonment, but if he has
been convicted for two or more crimes whether he is a recidivist or not, or whe
n he has been previously summoned but failed to surrender and so the court has t
o issue a warrant for his arrest, whatever credit he is entitled to shall be for
feited. If the offender is not disqualified from the credit or deduction provide
d for in Article 29 of the Revised Penal Code, then the next thing to determine
is whether he signed an undertaking to abide by the same rules and regulations g
overning convicts. If he signed an undertaking to abide by the same rules and re
gulations governing convicts, then it means that while he is suffering from prev
entive imprisonment, he is suffering like a convict, that is why the credit is f
ull. But if the offender did not sign an undertaking, then he will only be subje
cted to the rules and regulations governing detention prisoners. As such, he wil
l only be given 80% or 4/5 of the period of his preventive detention. From this
provision, one can see that the detention of the offender may subject him only t
o the treatment applicable to a detention prisoner or to the treatment applicabl
e to convicts, but since he is not convicted yet, while he is under preventive i
mprisonment, he cannot be subjected to the treatment applicable to convicts unle
ss he signs and agrees to be subjected to such disciplinary measures applicable
to convicts. Detention prisoner has more freedom within the detention institutio
n rather than those already convicted. The convicted prisoner suffers more restr
aints and hardship than detention prisoners. Under what circumstances may a dete
ntion prisoner be released, even though the proceedings against him are not yet
Why does the Revised Penal Code specify that such detention shall not be a penal
ty but merely a preventive measure? This article gives justification for detaini
ng the accused. Otherwise, the detention would violate the constitutional provis
ion that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty and property without due p
rocess of law. And also, the constitutional right of an accused to be presumed i
nnocent until the contrary is proved. Repeal of Article 80 When may a minor be c
ommitted to a reformatory? If the minor is between 9 - 15 years old and acted wi
th discernment, sentence must first be suspended under the following conditions:
(1) (2) (3) Crime committed is not punishable by death or reclusion perpetua; H
e is availing of the benefit of suspension for the first time; He must still be
a minor at the time of promulgation of the sentence. Correlating Article 24 with
Article 29 Although under Article 24, the detention of a person accused of a cr
ime while the case against him is being tried does not amount to a penalty, yet
the law considers this as part of the imprisonment and generally deductible from
the sentence. When will this credit apply? If the penalty imposed consists of a
deprivation of liberty. Not all who have undergone preventive imprisonment shal
l be given a credit Under Article 24, preventive imprisonment of an accused who
is not yet convicted, but by express provision of Article24 is not a penalty. Ye
t Article 29, if ultimately the accused is convicted and the penalty imposed inv
olves deprivation of liberty, provides that the period during which he had under
gone preventive detention will be deducted from the sentence, unless he is one o
f those disqualified under the law.
Article 29 of the Revised Penal Code has been amended by a Batas Pambansa effect
ive that tool effect on September 20, 1980. This amendment is found in the Rules
of Court, under the rules on bail in Rule 114 of the Rules on Criminal Procedur
e, the same treatment exactly is applied there. In the amendment, the law does n

ot speak of credit. Whether the person is entitled to credit is immaterial. The

discharge of the offender from preventive imprisonment or detention is predicate
d on the fact that even if he would be found guilty of the crime charged, he has
practically served the sentence already, because he has been detained for a per
iod already equal to if not greater than the maximum penalty that would be possi
bly be imposed on him if found guilty. If the crime committed is punishable only
by destierro, the most the offender may be held under preventive imprisonment i
s 30 days, and whether the proceedings are terminated or not, such detention pri
soner shall be discharged.
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
Understand the amendment made to Article 29. This amendment has been incorporate
d under Rule 114 precisely to do away with arbitrary detention. Proper petition
for habeas corpus must be filed to challenge the legality of the detention of th
e prisoner. Questions & Answers If the offender has already been released, what
is the use of continuing the proceedings? The proceedings will determine whether
the accused is liable or not. If he was criminally liable, it follows that he i
s also civilly liable. The civil liability must be determined. That is why the t
rial must go on. Duration of penalties Reclusion perpetua What is the duration o
f reclusion perpetua? Do not answer Article 27 to this question. The proper answ
er would be that reclusion perpetua has no duration because this is an indivisib
le penalty and indivisible penalties have no durations. Under Article 27, those
sentenced to reclusion perpetua shall be pardoned after undergoing the penalty f
or 30 years, unless such person, by reason of his conduct or some other serious
cause, shall be considered by the Chief Executive as unworthy of pardon. Under A
rticle 70, which is the Three-Fold Rule, the maximum period shall in no case exc
eed 40 years. If a convict who is to serve several sentences could only be made
to serve 40 years, with more reason, one who is sentenced to a singly penalty of
reclusion perpetua should not be held for more than 40 years. The duration of 4
0 years is not a matter of provision of law; this is only by analogy. There is n
o provision of the Revised Penal Code that one sentenced to reclusion perpetua c
annot be held in jail for 40 years and neither is there a decision to this effec
t. Destierro What is the duration of destierro? (3) (4) (2)
Vena V. Verga
The duration of destierro is from six months and one day, to six year, which is
the same as that of prision correcional and suspension. Destierro is a principal
penalty. It is a punishment whereby a convict is vanished to a certan place and
is prohibited form entering or coming near that place designated in the sentenc
e, not less than 25 Kms.. However, the court cannot extend beyond 250 Kms. If th
e convict should enter the prohibited places, he commits the crime of evasion of
service of sentence under Article 157. But if the convict himself would go furt
her from which he is vanished by the court, there is no evasion of sentence beca
use the 240-Km. limit is upon the authority of the court in vanishing the convic
t. Under the Revised Penal Code, destierro is the penalty imposed in the followi
ng situations: (1) When a legally married person who had surprised his or her sp
ouse in the act of sexual intercourse with another and while in that act or imme
diately thereafter should kill or inflict serious physical injuries upon the oth
er spouse, and/or the paramour or mistress. This is found in Article 247. In the
crime of grave threat or light threat, when the offender is required to put up
a bond for good behavior but failed or refused to do so under Article 284, such
convict shall be sentenced to destierro so that he would not be able to carry ou
t his threat. In the crime of concubinage, the penalty prescribed for the concub
ine is destierro under Article 334. Where the penalty prescribed by law is arres
to mayor, but the offender is entitled privileged mitigating circumstance and lo
wering the prescribed penalty by one degree, the penalty one degree lower is des
tierro. Thus, it shall be the one imposed.
Civil Interdiction Civil interdiction is an accessory penalty. offender during t
he time of his sentence: (1) (2) (3) (4) Civil interdiction shall deprive the
The rights of parental authority, or guardianship either as to the person or pro
perty of any ward; Marital authority; The right to manage his property; and The
right to dispose of such property by any act or any conveyance inter vivos.
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Can a convict execute a last will and testament? Yes. Primary classification of
penalties Principal penalties and accessory penalties The penalties which are bo
th principal and accessory penalties are the following: (1) (2) Perpetual or tem
porary absolute disqualification; Perpetual or temporary special disqualificatio
n. (3) (4)
Vena V. Verga
If asked what are the accessory penalties, do not just state the accessory penal
ties. State the principal penalty and the corresponding accessory penalties. Pen
alties in which other accessory penalties are inherent: (1) (2) Article 40. Deat
h - perpetual absolute disqualification, and civil interdiction during 30 years
following date of sentence; Article 41. Reclusion perpetua and reclusion tempora
l - civil interdiction for life or during the period of the sentence as the case
may be, and perpetual absolute disqualification; Article 42. Prision mayor - te
mporary absolute disqualification perpetual special disqualification from the ri
ght of suffrage; Article 43. Prision correccional - suspension from public offic
e, from the right to follow a profession or calling, and perpetual special disqu
alification from the rights of suffrage if the duration of said imprisonment sha
ll exceed 18 months. Article 44. Arresto - suspension of the right to hold offic
e and the right of suffrage during the term of the sentence.
Questions & Answers 1. is the duration? If the penalty of suspension is imposed
as an accessory, what
Its duration shall be that of the principal penalty. 2. If the penalty of tempor
ary disqualification is imposed as principal penalty, what is the duration? The
duration is six years and one day to 12 years. 3. What do we refer to if it is p
erpetual or temporary disqualification? We refer to the duration of the disquali
fication. 4. What do we refer to if it is special or absolute disqualification?
There are accessory penalties which are true to other principal penalties. An ex
ample is the penalty of civil interdiction. This is an accessory penalty and, as
provided in Article 34, a convict sentenced to civil interdiction suffers certa
in disqualification during the term of the sentence. One of the disqualification
s is that of making a conveyance of his property inter vivos. Illustration: A ha
s been convicted and is serving the penalty of prision mayor. While serving sent
ence, he executed a deed of sale over his only parcel of land. A creditor moved
to annul the sale on the ground that the convict is not qualified to execute a d
eed of conveyance inter vivos. If you were the judge, how would you resolve the
move of the creditor to annul the sale? Civil interdiction is not an accessory p
enalty in prision mayor. The convict can convey his property. Questions & Answer
s What accessory penalty is common to all principal penalties? Confiscation or f
orfeiture on the instruments or proceeds of the crime.
We refer to the nature of the disqualification. The classification of principal
and accessory is found in Article 25. In classifying the penalties as principal
and accessory, what is meant by this is that those penalties classified as acces
sory penalties need not be stated in the sentence. The accessory penalties follo
w the principal penalty imposed for the crime as a matter of course. So in the i
mposition of the sentence, the court will specify only the principal penalty but
that is not the only penalty which the offender will suffer. Penalties which th
e law considers as accessory to the prescribed penalty are automatically imposed
even though they are not stated in the judgment. As to the particular penalties
that follow a particular principal penalty, Articles 40 to 45 of the Revised Pe
nal Code shall govern.

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Designation of penalty Bond to keep the peace One of the principal penalties com
mon to the others is bond to keep the peace. There is no crime under the Revised
Penal Code which carries this penalty. Bond for good behavior Bond for good beh
avior is prescribed by the Revised Penal Code for the crimes of grave threats an
d light threats under Article 234. You cannot find this penalty in Article 25 be
cause Article 25 only provides for bond to keep the peace. Remember that no felo
ny shall be punished by any penalty not prescribed by law prior to its commissio
n pursuant to Article 21. Questions & Answers 1. If bond to keep the peace is no
t the same as bond for good behavior, are they one and the same bond that differ
only in name? No. The legal effect of each is entirely different. The legal eff
ect of a failure to post a bond to keep the peace is imprisonment either for six
months or 30 days, depending on whether the felony committed is grave or less g
rave on one hand, or it is light only on the other hand. The legal effect of fai
lure to post a bond for good behavior is not imprisonment but destierro under Ar
ticle 284. Thus, it is clear that the two bonds are not the same considering tha
t the legal effect or the failure to put up the bond is not the same. Divisible
and indivisible penalties When we talk of period, it is implying that the penalt
y is divisible. If, after being given a problem, you were asked to state the per
iod in which the penalty of reclusion perpetua is to be imposed, remember that w
hen the penalty is indivisible, there is no period. Do not talk of period, becau
se when you talk of period, you are implying that the penalty is divisible becau
se the period referred to is the minimum, the medium, and the maximum. If it is
indivisible, there is no such thing as minimum, medium and maximum. The capital
punishment You were asked to state whether you are in favor or against capital p
unishment. Understand that you are not taking the examination in Theology. Expla
in the issue on the basis of social utility of the penalty. Is it beneficial in
deterring crimes or not? This should be the premise of your reasoning. Reclusion
perpetua as modified
Vena V. Verga
Since the principal penalties carry with them certain accessory penalties, the c
ourts are not at liberty to use any designation of the principal penalty. So it
was held that when the penalty should be reclusion perpetua, it is error for the
court to use the term life imprisonment. In other words, the courts are not corre
ct when they deviate from the technical designation of the principal penalty, be
cause the moment they deviate from this designation, there will be no correspond
ing accessory penalties that will go with them. Illustration: When the judge sen
tenced the accused to the penalty of reclusion perpetua, but instead of saying r
eclusion perpetua, it sentenced the accused to life imprisonment, the designatio
n is wrong.
Before the enactment of Republic Act No. 7659, which made amendments to the Revi
sed Penal Code, the penalty of reclusion perpetua had no fixed duration. The Rev
ised Penal Code provides in Article 27 that the convict shall be pardoned after
undergoing the penalty for thirty years, unless by reason of his conduct or some
other serious cause, he is not deserving of pardon. As amended by Section 21 of
Republic Act No. 7659, the same article now provides that the penalty of reclus
ion perpetua shall be from 20 years to 40 years. Because of this, speculations a
rose as to whether it made reclusion perpetua a divisible penalty. As we know, w
hen a penalty has a fixed duration, it is said to be divisible and, in accordanc
e with the provisions of Articles 65 and 76, should be divided into three equal
portions to form one period of each of the three portions. Otherwise, if the pen
alty has no fixed duration, it is an indivisible penalty. The nature of the pena
lty as divisible or indivisible is decisive of the proper penalty to be imposed
under the Revised Penal Code inasmuch as it determines whether the rules in Arti
cle 63 or the rules in Article 64 should be observed in fixing the penalty. Thus
, consistent with the rule mentioned, the Supreme Court, by its First Division,
applied Article 65 of the Code in imposing the penalty for rape in People v. Con

rado Lucas, GR No. 108172-73, May 25, 1994. It divided the time included in the
penalty of reclusion perpetua into three equal portions, with each portion compo
sing a period as follows: Minimum - 20 years and one day, to 26 years and eight
months; Medium - 26 years, eight months and one day, to 33 years and four months
; Maximum - 34 years, four months and one day, to 40 years.
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
Vena V. Verga
Considering the aggravating circumstance of relationship, the Court sentenced th
e accused to imprisonment of 34 years, four months and one day of reclusion perp
etua, instead of the straight penalty of reclusion perpetua imposed by the trial
court. The appellee seasonably filed a motion for clarification to correct the
duration of the sentence, because instead of beginning with 33 years, four month
s and one day, it was stated as 34 years, four months and one day. The issue of
whether the amendment of Article 27 made reclusion perpetua a divisible penalty
was raised, and because the issue is one of first impression and momentous impor
tance, the First Division referred the motion to the Court en banc. In a resolut
ion promulgated on January 9, 1995, the Supreme Court en banc held that reclusio
n perpetua shall remain as an indivisible penalty. To this end, the resolution s
tates: After deliberating on the motion and re-examining the legislation history
of RA 7659, the Court concludes that although Section 17 of RA 7659 has fixed t
he duration of Reclusion Perpetua from twenty years (20) and one (1) to forty 40
years, there was no clear legislative intent to alter its original classificati
on as an indivisible penalty. It shall then remain as an indivisible penalty. Ve
rily, if reclusion perpetua was classified as a divisible penalty, then Article
63 of the Revised Penal Code would lose its reason and basis for existence. To i
llustrate, the first paragraph of Section 20 of the amended RA No. 6425 provides
for the penalty of reclusion perpetua to death whenever the dangerous drugs inv
olved are of any of the quantities stated herein. If Article 63 of the Code were
no longer applicable because reclusion perpetua is supposed to be a divisible p
enalty, then there would be no statutory rules for determining when either reclu
sion perpetua or death should be the imposable penalty. In fine, there would be
no occasion for imposing reclusion perpetua as the penalty in drug cases, regard
less of the attendant modifying circumstances. Now then, if Congress had intende
d to reclassify reclusion perpetua as divisible penalty, then it should have ame
nded Article 63 and Article 76 of the Revised Penal Code. The latter is the law
on what are considered divisible penalties under the Code and what should be the
duration of the periods thereof. There are, as well, other provisions of the Re
vised Penal Code involving reclusion perpetua, such as Article 41 on the accesso
ry penalties thereof and paragraphs 2 and 3 of Article 61, which have not been t
ouched by a corresponding amendment.
Ultimately, the question arises: What then may be the reason for the amendment fi
xing the duration of reclusion perpetua? This question was answered in the same c
ase of People v. Lucas by quoting pertinent portion of the decision in People v.
Reyes, 212 SCRA 402, thus: The imputed duration of thirty (30) years for reclus
ion perpetua, thereof, is only to serve as the basis for determining the convicts
eligibility for pardon or for the application of the three-fold rule in the ser
vice of penalties. Since, however, in all the graduated scales of penalties in t
he Code, as set out in Article 25, 70 and 21, reclusion perpetua is the penalty
immediately next higher to reclusion temporal, it follows by necessary implicati
on that the minimum of reclusion perpetua is twenty (20) years and one (1) day w
ith a maximum duration thereafter to last for the rest of the convicts natural li
fe, although, pursuant to Article 70, it appears that the maximum period for the
service of penalties shall not exceed forty (40) years. It would be legally abs
urd and violative of the scales of penalties in the Code to reckon the minimum o
f Reclusion Perpetua at thirty (30) years since there would thereby be a resulta
nt lacuna whenever the penalty exceeds the maximum twenty (20) years of Reclusio
n Temporal but is less than thirty (30) years. Innovations on the imposition of
the death penalty Aside form restoring the death penalty for certain heinous cri
mes, Republic Act No. 7659 made innovations on the provisions of the Revised Pen
al Code regarding the imposition of the death penalty: (1) Article 47 has been r
eworded to expressly include among the instances where the death penalty shall n
ot be imposed, the case of an offender who is below 18 years old at the time of

the commission of the offense. But even without this amendment, the death penalt
y may not be meted out on an offender who was below 18 years of age at the time
of the commission of the crime because Article 68 the lowers the imposable penal
ty upon such offenders by at least one degree than that prescribed for the crime
. In the matter of executing the death penalty, Article 81 has been amended and,
thus, directs that the manner of putting the convict to death by electrocution
shall be changed to gas poisoning as soon as the facilities are provided, and th
e sentence shall be carried out not later that one year after the finality of ju
dgment. The original provision of Article 83, anent the suspension of the execut
ion of the death penalty for three years if the convict was a
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
woman, has been deleted and instead, limits such suspension to last while the wo
man was pregnant and within one year after delivery. Subsidiary penalty Is subsi
diary penalty an accessory penalty? No. If the convict does not want to pay fine
and has so many friends and wants to prolong his stay in jail, can he stay ther
e and not pay fine? No. After undergoing subsidiary penalty and the convict is a
lready released from jail and his financial circumstances improve, can he be mad
e to pay? Yes, for the full amount with deduction. Article 39 deals with subsidi
ary penalty. There are two situations there: (1) (2) When there is a principal p
enalty of imprisonment or any other principal penalty and it carries with it a f
ine; and When penalty is only a fine. Questions & Answers
Vena V. Verga
In People v. Subido, it was held that the convict cannot choose not to serve, or
not to pay the fine and instead serve the subsidiary penalty. A subsidiary pena
lty will only be served if the sheriff should return the execution for the fine
on the property of the convict and he does not have the properties to satisfy th
e writ.
The penalty imposed by the judge is fine only. The sheriff then tried to levy th
e property of the defendant after it has become final and executory, but it was
returned unsatisfied. The court then issued an order for said convict to suffer
subsidiary penalty. The convict was detained, for which reason he filed a petiti
on for habeas corpus contending that his detention is illegal. Will the petition
prosper? Yes. The judgment became final without statement as to subsidiary pena
lty, so that even if the convict has no money or property to satisfy the fine, h
e cannot suffer subsidiary penalty because the latter is not an accessory and so
it must be expressly stated. If the court overlooked to provide for subsidiary
penalty in the sentence and its attention was later called to that effect, there
after, it tried to modify the sentence to include subsidiary penalty after perio
d to appeal had already elapsed, the addition of subsidiary penalty will be null
and void. This is tantamount to double jeopardy. If the fine is prescribed with
the penalty of imprisonment or any deprivation of liberty, such imprisonment sh
ould not be higher than six years or prision correccional. Otherwise, there is n
o subsidiary penalty. ii. (1) When is subsidiary penalty applied
Therefore, there shall be no subsidiary penalty for the non-payment of damages t
o the offended party. This subsidiary penalty is one of important matter under t
he title of penalty. A subsidiary penalty is not an accessory penalty. Since it
is not an accessory penalty, it must be expressly stated in the sentence, but th
e sentence does not specify the period of subsidiary penalty because it will onl
y be known if the convict cannot pay the fine. The sentence will merely provide
that in case of non-payment of the fine, the convict shall be required to save s
ubsidiary penalty. It will then be the prison authority who will compute this. S
o even if subsidiary penalty is proper in a case, if the judge failed to state i
n the sentence that the convict shall be required to suffer subsidiary penalty i
n case of insolvency to pay the fine, that convict cannot be required to suffer
the accessory penalty. This particular legal point is a bar problem. Therefore,
the judgment of the court must state this. If the judgment is silent, he cannot
suffer any subsidiary penalty. The subsidiary penalty is not an accessory penalt
y that follows the principal penalty as a matter of course. It is not within the
control of the convict to pay the fine or not and once the sentence becomes fin
al and executory and a writ of execution is issued to collect the fine, if convi
ct has property to levy upon, the same shall answer for the fine, whether he lik
es it or not. It must be that the convict is insolvent to pay the fine. That mea
ns that the writ of execution issued against the property of the convict, if any
, is returned unsatisfied.
If the subsidiary penalty prescribed for the non-payment of fine which goes with
the principal penalty, the maximum duration of the subsidiary penalty is one ye

ar, so there is no subsidiary penalty that goes beyond one year. But this will o
nly be true if the one year period is higher than 1/3 of the principal penalty,
the convict cannot be made to undergo subsidiary penalty more than 1/3 of the du
ration of the principal penalty and in no case will it be more than 1 year - get
1/3 of the principal penalty - whichever is lower. If the subsidiary penalty is
to be imposed for non payment of fine and the principal penalty imposed be fine
only, which is a single penalty, that means it does not go with another princip
al penalty, the most that the convict will be required to undergo subsidiary imp
risonment is six months, if the felony committed is grave or less grave, otherwi
se, if the felony committed is slight, the maximum duration of the subsidiary pe
nalty is only 15 days.
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
There are some who use the term subsidiary imprisonment. The term is wrong becau
se the penalty is not only served by imprisonment. The subsidiary penalty follow
s the nature of the principal penalty. If the principal penalty is destierro, th
is being a divisible penalty, and a penalty with a fixed duration, the non-payme
nt of the fine will bring about subsidiary penalty. This being a restriction of
liberty with a fixed duration under Article 39 for the nonpayment of fine that g
oes with the destierro, the convict will be required to undergo subsidiary penal
ty and it will also be in the form of destierro. Illustration: A convict was sen
tenced to suspension and fine. This is a penalty where a public officer anticipa
tes public duties, he entered into the performance of public office even before
he has complied with the required formalities. Suppose the convict cannot pay th
e fine, may he be required to undergo subsidiary penalty? Yes, because the penal
ty of suspension has a fixed duration. Under Article 27, suspension and destierr
o have the same duration as prision correccional. So the duration does not excee
d six years. Since it is a penalty with a fixed duration under Article 39, when
there is a subsidiary penalty, such shall be 1/3 of the period of suspension whi
ch in no case beyond one year. But the subsidiary penalty will be served not by
imprisonment but by continued suspension. If the penalty is public censure and f
ine even if the public censure is a light penalty, the convict cannot be require
d to pay the fine for subsidiary penalty for the non-payment of the fine because
public censure is a penalty that has no fixed duration. Do not consider the tot
ality of the imprisonment the convict is sentenced to but consider the totality
or the duration of the imprisonment that the convict will be required to serve u
nder the Three-Fold Rule. If the totality of the imprisonment under this rule do
es not exceed six years, then, even if the totality of all the sentences without
applying the Three-Fold Rule will go beyond six years, the convict shall be req
uired to undergo subsidiary penalty if he could not pay the fine. Illustration:
A collector of NAWASA collected from 50 houses within a certain locality. When h
e was collecting NAWASA bills, the charges of all these consumers was a minimum
of 10. The collector appropriated the amount collected and so was charged with e
stafa. He was convicted. Penalty imposed was arresto mayor and a fine of P200.00
in each count. If you were the judge, what penalty would you impose? May the co
nvict be required to undergo subsidiary penalty in case he is insolvent to pay t
he fine?
Vena V. Verga
The Three-Fold Rule should not applied by the court. In this case of 50 counts o
f estafa, the penalty imposed was arresto mayor and a fine of P200.00. Arresto m
ayor + P200.00 x 50. Arresto Mayor is six months x 50 = 25 years. P200.00 x 50 =
P10,000.00. Thus, I would impose a penalty of arresto mayor and a fine of P200.
00 multiplied by 50 counts and state further that as a judge, I am not in the pos
ition to apply the Three-Fold Rule because the ThreeFold Rule is to be given eff
ect when the convict is already serving sentence in the penitentiiary. It is the
prison authority who will apply the Three-Fold Rule. As far as the court is con
cerned, that will be the penalty to be imposed. For the purposes of subsidiary pe
nalty, apply the Three-Fold Rule if the penalty is arresto mayor and a fine of P
200.00 multiplied by 3. This means one year and six months only. So, applying th
e Three- Fold Rule, the penalty does not go beyond six years. Hence, for the non
- payment of the fine of P10,000.00, the convict shall be required to undergo su
bsidiary penalty. This is because the imprisonment that will be served will not
go beyond six years. It will only be one year and six months, since in the servi
ce of the sentence, the Three-Fold Rule will apply. It is clearly provided under
Article 39 that if the means of the convict should improve, even if he has alre
ady served subsidiary penalty, he shall still be required to pay the fine and th
ere is no deduction for that amount which the convict has already served by way
of subsidiary penalty. Articles 63 and 64 If crime committed is parricide, penal
ty is reclusion perpetua. The accused, after committing parricide, voluntarily s
urrendered and pleaded guilty of the crime charged upon arraignment. It was also
established that he was intoxicated, and no aggravating circumstances were pres

ent. What penalty would you impose? Reclusion perpetua, because it is an indivis
ible penalty. When there are two or more mitigating circumstances and there is n
o aggravating circumstance, penalty to be imposed shall be one degree lower to b
e imposed in the proper period. Do not apply this when there is one aggravating
circumstance. Illustration: There are about four mitigating circumstances and on
e aggravating circumstance. Court offsets the aggravating circumstance against t
he mitigating circumstance and there still remains three mitigating circumstance
s. Because of that, the judge lowered the penalty by one degree. Is the judge co
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Criminal Law 1 Reviewer (Padilla cases and notes combined with Ortega Notes)
No. In such a case when there are aggravating circumstances, no matter how many
mitigating circumstances there are, after offsetting, do not go down any degree
lower. The penalty prescribed by law will be the penalty to be imposed, but in t
he minimum period. Cannot go below the minimum period when there is an aggravati
ng circumstance. Go into the lowering of the penalty by one degree if the penalt
y is divisible. So do not apply the rule in paragraph 5 of Article 64 to a case
where the penalty is divisible. Article 66 When there are mitigating circumstanc
e and aggravating circumstance and the penalty is only fine, when it is only ord
inary mitigating circumstance and aggravating circumstance, apply Article 66. Be
cause you determine the imposable fine on the basis of the financial resources o
r means of the offender. But if the penalty would be lowered by degree, there is
a privileged mitigating circumstance or the felony committed is attempted or fr
ustrated, provided it is not a light felony against persons or property, because
if it is a light felony and punishable by fine, it is not a crime at all unless
it is consummated. So, if it is attempted or frustrated, do not go one degree l
ower because it is not punishable unless it is a light felony against person or
property where the imposable penalty will be lowered by one degree or two degree
s. Penalty prescribed to a crime is lowered by degrees in the following cases: (
1) When the crime is only attempted or frustrated If it is frustrated, penalty i
s one degree lower than that prescribed by law. If it is attempted, penalty is t
wo degrees lower than that prescribed by law. This is so because the penalty pre
scribed by law for a crime refers to the consummated stage. (2) When the offende
r is an accomplice or accessory only Penalty is one degree lower in the case of
an accomplice. Penalty is two degrees lower in the case of an accessory. This is
so because the penalty prescribed by law for a given crime refers to the consum
mated stage. (3) When there is a privilege mitigating circumstance in favor of t
he offender, it will lower the penalty by one or two degrees than that
Vena V. Verga
prescribed by law depending on what the particular provision of the Revised Pena
l Code states. (4) When the penalty prescribed for the crime committed is a divi
sible penalty and there are two or more ordinary mitigating circumstances and no
aggravating circumstances whatsoever, the penalty next lower in degree shall be
the one imposed. Whenever the provision of the Revised Penal Code specifically
lowers the penalty by one or two degrees than what is ordinarily prescribed for
the crime committed.
Penalty commonly imposed by the Revised Penal Code may be by way of imprisonment
or by way of fine or, to a limited extent, by way of destierro or disqualificat
ion, whether absolute or special. In the matter of lowering the penalty by degre
e, the reference is Article 71. It is necessary to know the chronology under Art
icle 71 by simply knowing the scale. Take note that destierro comes after arrest
o mayor so the penalty one degree lower than arresto mayor is not arresto menor,
but destierro. Memorize the scale in Article 71. In Article 27, with respect to
the range of each penalty, the range of arresto menor follows arresto mayor, si
nce arresto menor is one to 30 days or one month, while arresto mayor is one mon
th and one day to six months. On the other hand, the duration of destierro is th
e same as prision correccional which is six months and one day to six years. But
be this as it is, under Article 71, in the scale of penalties graduated accordi
ng to degrees, arresto mayor is higher than destierro. In homicide under Article
249, the penalty is reclusion temporal. One degree lower, if homicide is frustr
ated, or there is an accomplice participating in homicide, is prision mayor, and
two degrees lower is prision correccional. This is true if the penalty prescrib
ed by the Revised Penal Code is a whole divisible penalty -- one degree or 2 deg
rees lower will also be punished as a whole. But generally, the penalties prescr
ibed by the Revised Penal Code are only in periods, like prision correcional min
imum, or prision correcional minimum to medium. Although the penalty is prescrib

ed by the Revised Penal Code as a period, such penalty should be understood as a

degree in itself and the following rules shall govern: (1) When the penalty pre
scribed by the Revised Code is made up of a period, like prision correccional me
dium, the penalty one degree lower is prision correccional minimum, and the pena
lty two degrees lower is arresto mayor maximum. In other words, each degree will
be made
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up of only one period because the penalty prescribed is also made up only of one
period. When the penalty prescribed by the Code is made up of two periods of a
given penalty, every time such penalty is lowered by one degree you have to go d
own also by two periods. Illustration: If the penalty prescribed for the crime i
s prision correccional medium to maximum, the penalty one degree lower will be a
rresto mayor maximum to prision correccional minimum, and the penalty another de
gree lower will be arresto mayor minimum to medium. Every degree will be compose
d of two periods. (3) When the penalty prescribed by the Revised Penal Code is m
ade up of three periods of different penalties, every time you go down one degre
e lower, you have to go down by three periods. Illustration: The penalty prescri
bed by the Revised Penal Code is prision mayor maximum to reclusion temporal med
ium, the penalty one degree lower is prision correccional maximum to prision may
or medium. Another degree lower will be arresto mayor maximum to prision correcc
ional medium. These rules have nothing to do with mitigating or aggravating circ
umstances. These rules refer to the lowering of penalty by one or two degrees. A
s to how mitigating or aggravating circumstances may affect the penalty, the rul
es are found in Articles 63 and 64. Article 63 governs when the penalty prescrib
ed by the Revised Penal Code is indivisible. Article 64 governs when the penalty
prescribed by the Revised Penal Code is divisible. When the penalty is indivisi
ble, no matter how many ordinary mitigating circumstances there are, the prescri
bed penalty is never lowered by degree. It takes a privileged mitigating circums
tance to lower such penalty by degree. On the other hand, when the penalty presc
ribed by the Revised Penal Code is divisible, such penalty shall be lowered by o
ne degree only but imposed in the proper period, when there are two or more ordi
nary mitigating circumstance and there is no aggravating circumstance whatsoever
. Article 75 Fines With respect to the penalty of fine, if the fine has to be lo
wered by degree either because the felony committed is only attempted or frustra
ted or because there is an accomplice or an accessory participation, the fine is
lowered by deducting 1/4 of the maximum amount of the fine from such maximum wi
thout changing the minimum amount prescribed by law. Illustration:
Vena V. Verga
If the penalty prescribed is a fine ranging from P200.00 to P500.00, but the fel
ony is frustrated so that the penalty should be imposed one degree lower, 1/4 of
P500.00 shall be deducted therefrom. This is done by deducting P125.00 from P50
0.00, leaving a difference of P375.00. The penalty one degree lower is P375.00.
To go another degree lower, P125.00 shall again be deducted from P375.00 and tha
t would leave a difference of P250.00. Hence, the penalty another degree lower i
s a fine ranging from P200.00 to P250.00. If at all, the fine has to be lowered
further, it cannot go lower than P200.00. So, the fine will be imposed at P200.0
0. This rule applies when the fine has to be lowered by degree. Article 66 In so
far as ordinary mitigating or aggravating circumstance would affect the penalty
which is in the form of a fine, Article 66 of the Revised Penal Code shall gove
rn. Under this article, it is discretionary upon the court to apply the fine tak
ing into consideration the financial means of the offender to pay the same. In o
ther words, it is not only the mitigating and/or aggravating circumstances that
the court shall take into consideration, but primarily, the financial capability
of the offender to pay the fine. For the same crime, the penalty upon an accuse
d who is poor may be less than the penalty upon an accused committing the same c
rime but who is wealthy . For instance, when there are two offenders who are coconspirators to a crime, and their penalty consists of a fine only, and one of t
hem is wealthy while the other is a pauper, the court may impose a higher penalt
y upon the wealthy person and a lower fine for the pauper. Penalty for murder un
der the Revised Penal Code is reclusion temporal maximum to death. So, the penal
ty would be reclusion temporal maximum reclusion perpetua death. This penalty ma
de up of three periods. The Three-Fold Rule Under this rule, when a convict is t

o serve successive penalties, he will actually serve the penalties imposed by la

w. Instead, the most severe of penalties imposed on him shall be multiplied by t
hree and the period will be only term of the penalty to be served by him. Howeve
r, in no case should penalty exceed 40 years. not the the the
This rule is intended for the benefit of the convict and so, you will only apply
this provided the sum total of all the penalties imposed would be greater than
the product of the most severe penalty multiplied by three but in no case will t
he penalties to be served by the convict be more than 40 years.
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Although this rule is known as the Three-Fold rule, you cannot actually apply th
is if the convict is to serve only three successive penalties. The Three-Fold Ru
le can only be applied if the convict is to serve four or more sentences success
ively. If the sentences would be served simultaneously, the Three-Fold rule does
not govern. The chronology of the penalties as provided in Article 70 of the Re
vised Penal Code shall be followed. It is in the service of the penalty, not in
the imposition of the penalty, that Three-Fold rule is to be applied. The threeFold rule will apply whether sentences are the product of one information in one
court, whether sentences are promulgated in one day or whether the sentences pr
omulgated by different courts on different days. What is material is that convic
t shall serve more than three successive sentences. the the the are the Illustra
Vena V. Verga
A district engineer was sentenced by the court to a term of 914 years in prison.
A person was sentenced to three death sentences. Significance: If ever granted
pardon for 1 crime, the two remaining penalties must still be executed. This rul
e will apply only if sentences are to be served successively. Act No. 4013 (Inde
terminate Sentence Law), as amended Three things to know about the Indeterminate
Sentence Law: (1) (2) (3) Its purpose; Instances when it does not apply; and Ho
w it operates
For purposes of the Three-Fold Rule, even perpetual penalties are taken into acc
ount. So not only penalties with fixed duration, even penalties without any fixe
d duration or indivisible penalties are taken into account. For purposes of the
Three-Fold rule, indivisible penalties are given equivalent of 30 years. If the
penalty is perpetual disqualification, it will be given and equivalent duration
of 30 years, so that if he will have to suffer several perpetual disqualificatio
n, under the Three-Fold rule, you take the most severe and multiply it by three.
The Three-Fold rule does not apply to the penalty prescribed but to the penalty
imposed as determined by the court. Illustration: Penalties imposed are One pri
sion correcional minimum 2 years and 4 months One arresto mayor One prision mayo
r - 1 month and 1 day to 6 months - 6 years and 1 day to 12 years
Indeterminate Sentence Law governs whether the crime is punishable under the Rev
ised Penal Code or a special Law. It is not limited to violations of the Revised
Penal Code. It applies only when the penalty served is imprisonment. imprisonme
nt, then it does not apply. If not by
Purpose The purpose of the Indeterminate Sentence law is to avoid prolonged impr
isonment, because it is proven to be more destructive than constructive to the o
ffender. So, the purpose of the Indeterminate Sentence Law in shortening the pos
sible detention of the convict in jail is to save valuable human resources. In o
ther words, if the valuable human resources were allowed prolonged confinement i
n jail, they would deteriorate. Purpose is to preserve economic usefulness for t
hese people for having committed a crime -- to reform them rather than to deteri
orate them and, at the same time, saving the government expenses of maintaining
the convicts on a prolonged confinement in jail. If the crime is a violation of
the Revised Penal Code, the court will impose a sentence that has a minimum and
maximum. The maximum of the indeterminate sentence will be arrived at by taking
into account the attendant mitigating and/or aggravating circumstances according
to Article 64 of the Revised Penal Code. In arriving at the minimum of the inde
terminate sentence, the court will take into account the penalty prescribed for
the crime and go one degree lower. Within the range of one degree lower, the cou
rt will fix the
Do not commit the mistake of applying the Three- Fold Rule in this case. Never a
pply the Three-Fold rule when there are only three sentences. Even if you add th

e penalties, you can never arrive at a sum higher than the product of the most s
evere multiplied by three. The common mistake is, if given a situation, whether
the Three-Fold Rule could be applied. If asked, if you were the judge, what pena
lty would you impose, for purposes of imposing the penalty, the court is not at
liberty to apply the Three-Fold Rule, whatever the sum total of penalty for each
crime committed, even if it would amount to 1,000 years or more. It is only whe
n the convict is serving sentence that the prison authorities should determine h
ow long he should stay in jail.
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minimum for the indeterminate sentence, and within the range of the penalty arri
ved at as the maximum in the indeterminate sentence, the court will fix the maxi
mum of the sentence. If there is a privilege mitigating circumstance which has b
een taken in consideration in fixing the maximum of the indeterminate sentence,
the minimum shall be based on the penalty as reduced by the privilege mitigating
circumstance within the range of the penalty next lower in degree. If the crime
is a violation of a special law, in fixing the maximum of the indeterminate sen
tence, the court will impose the penalty within the range of the penalty prescri
bed by the special law, as long as it will not exceed the limit of the penalty.
In fixing the minimum, the court can fix a penalty anywhere within the range of
penalty prescribed by the special law, as long as it will not be less than the m
inimum limit of the penalty under said law. No mitigating and aggravating circum
stances are taken into account. The minimum and the maximum referred to in the I
ndeterminate Sentence Law are not periods. So, do not say, maximum or minimum pe
riod. For the purposes of the indeterminate Sentence Law, use the term minimum t
o refer to the duration of the sentence which the convict shall serve as a minim
um, and when we say maximum, for purposes of ISLAW, we refer to the maximum limi
t of the duration that the convict may be held in jail. We are not referring to
any period of the penalty as enumerated in Article 71. Courts are required to fi
x a minimum and a maximum of the sentence that they are to impose upon an offend
er when found guilty of the crime charged. So, whenever the Indeterminate Senten
ce Law is applicable, there is always a minimum and maximum of the sentence that
the convict shall serve. If the crime is punished by the Revised Penal Code, th
e law provides that the maximum shall be arrived at by considering the mitigatin
g and aggravating circumstances in the commission of the crime according to the
proper rules of the Revised Penal Code. To fix the maximum, consider the mitigat
ing and aggravating circumstances according to the rules found in Article 64. Th
is means (1) Penalties prescribed by the law for the crime committed shall be im
posed in the medium period if no mitigating or aggravating circumstance; If ther
e is aggravating circumstance, no mitigating, penalty shall be imposed in the ma
ximum; If there is mitigating circumstance, no aggravating, penalty shall be in
the minimum; If there are several mitigating and aggravating circumstances, they
shall offset against each other. Whatever remains, apply the rules. (5)
Vena V. Verga
If there are two or more mitigating circumstance and no aggravating circumstance
, penalty next lower in degree shall be the one imposed.
Rule under Art 64 shall apply in determining the maximum but not in determining
the minimum. In determining the applicable penalty according to the Indeterminat
e Sentence Law, there is no need to mention the number of years, months and days
; it is enough that the name of the penalty is mentioned while the Indeterminate
Sentence Law is applied. To fix the minimum and the maximum of the sentence, pe
nalty under the Revised Penal Code is not the penalty to be imposed by court bec
ause the court must apply the Indeterminate Sentence Law. The attendant mitigati
ng and/or aggravating circumstances in the commission of the crime are taken int
o consideration only when the maximum of the penalty is to be fixed. But in so f
ar as the minimum is concerned, the basis of the penalty prescribed by the Revis
ed Penal Code, and go one degree lower than that. But penalty one degree lower s
hall be applied in the same manner that the maximum is also fixed based only on
ordinary mitigating circumstances. This is true only if the mitigating circumsta
nce taken into account is only an ordinary mitigating circumstance. If the mitig
ating circumstance is privileged, you cannot follow the law in so far as fixing
the minimum of the indeterminate sentence is concerned; otherwise, it may happen
that the maximum of the indeterminate sentence is lower than its minimum. In on
e Supreme Court ruling, it was held that for purposes of applying the Indetermin
ate Sentence Law, the penalty prescribed by the Revised Penal Code and not that
which may be imposed by court. This ruling, however, is obviously erroneous. Thi
s is so because such an interpretation runs contrary to the rule of pro reo, whi

ch provides that the penal laws should always be construed an applied in a manne
r liberal or lenient to the offender. Therefore, the rule is, in applying the In
determiante Sentence Law, it is that penalty arrived at by the court after apply
ing the mitigating and aggravating circumstances that should be the basis. Crime
s punished under special law carry only one penalty; there are no degree or peri
ods. Moreover, crimes under special law do not consider mitigating or aggravatin
g circumstance present in the commission of the crime. So in the case of statuto
ry offense, no mitigating and no aggravating circumstances will be taken into ac
count. Just the same, courts are required in imposing the penalty upon the offen
der to fix a minimum that the convict should serve, and to set a maximum as the
limit of that sentence. Under the law, when the crime is punished under a specia
l law, the court may fix any penalty as the maximum without exceeding the penalt
y prescribed by special law for the crime committed. In the same manner, courts
are given discretion to fix a minimum anywhere within the range of the penalty p
rescribed by special law, as long as it will not be lower than the penalty presc
ribed. Disqualification may be divided into three, according to
(2) (3) (4)
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Vena V. Verga
Without regard to the nature of the crime, only those whose penalty does not exc
eed six years of imprisonment are those qualified for probation. If the penalty
is six years plus one day, he is no longer qualified for probation. If the offen
der was convicted of several offenses which were tried jointly and one decision
was rendered where multiple sentences imposed several prison terms as penalty, t
he basis for determining whether the penalty disqualifies the offender from prob
ation or not is the term of the individual imprisonment and not the totality of
all the prison terms imposed in the decision. So even if the prison term would s
um up to more than six years, if none of the individual penalties exceeds six ye
ars, the offender is not disqualified by such penalty from applying for probatio
n. On the other hand, without regard to the penalty, those who are convicted of
subversion or any crime against the public order are not qualified for probation
. So know the crimes under Title III, Book 2 of the Revised Penal Code. Among th
ese crimes is Alarms and Scandals, the penalty of which is only arresto menor or
a fine. Under the amendment to the Probation Law, those convicted of a crime ag
ainst public order regardless of the penalty are not qualified for probation. Ma
y a recidivist be given the benefit of Probation Law?
(1) (2) (3)
The time committed; The penalty imposed; and The offender involved.
The Indeterminate Sentence Law shall not apply to: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (
8) Persons convicted of offense punishable with death penalty or life imprisonme
nt; Persons convicted of treason, conspiracy or proposal to commit treason; Pers
ons convicted espionage; of misprision of treason, rebellion, sedition,
Persons convicted of piracy; Persons who are habitual delinquents; Persons who s
entence; shall have escaped from confinement or evaded
As a general rule, no. Exception: If the earlier conviction refers to a crime th
e penalty of which does not exceed 30 days imprisonment or a fine of not more th
an P200.00, such convict is not disqualified of the benefit of probation. So eve
n if he would be convicted subsequently of a crime embraced in the same title of
the Revised Penal Code as that of the earlier conviction, he is not disqualifie
d from probation provided that the penalty of the current crime committed does n
ot go beyond six years and the nature of the crime committed by him is not again
st public order, national security or subversion. Although a person may be eligi
ble for probation, the moment he perfects an appeal from the judgment of convict
ion, he cannot avail of probation anymore. So the benefit of probation must be i
nvoked at the earliest instance after conviction. He should not wait up to the t
ime when he interposes an appeal or the sentence has become final and executory.
The idea is that probation has to be invoked at the earliest opportunity. An ap
plication for probation is exclusively within the jurisdiction of the trial cour
t that renders the judgment. For the offender to apply in such court, he should
not appeal such judgment. Once he appeals, regardless of the purpose of the appe
al, he will be disqualified from applying for Probation, even though he may ther
eafter withdraw his appeal.
Those who have been granted conditional pardon by the Chief Executive and shall
have violated the term thereto; Those whose maximum term of imprisonment does no
t exceed one year, but not to those already sentenced by final judgment at the t
ime of the approval of Indeterminate Sentence Law.
Although the penalty prescribed for the felony committed is death or reclusion p
erpetua, if after considering the attendant circumstances, the imposable penalty
is reclusion temporal or less, the Indeterminate Sentence Law applies (People v

. Cempron, 187 SCRA 278). Presidential Decree No. 968 (Probation Law) Among the
different grounds of partial extinction of criminal liability, the most importan
t is probation. Probation is a manner of disposing of an accused who have been c
onvicted by a trial court by placing him under supervision of a probation office
r, under such terms and conditions that the court may fix. This may be availed o
f before the convict begins serving sentence by final judgment and provided that
he did not appeal anymore from conviction.
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If the offender would appeal the conviction of the trial court and the appellate
court reduced the penalty to say, less than six years, that convict can still f
ile an application for probation, because the earliest opportunity for him to av
ail of probation came only after judgment by the appellate court. Whether a conv
ict who is otherwise qualified for probation may be give the benefit of probatio
n or not, the courts are always required to conduct a hearing. If the court deni
ed the application for probation without the benefit of the hearing, where as th
e applicant is not disqualified under the provision of the Probation Law, but on
ly based on the report of the probation officer, the denial is correctible by ce
rtiorari, because it is an act of the court in excess of jurisdiction or without
jurisdiction, the order denying the application therefore is null and void. Pro
bation is intended to promote the correction and rehabilitation of an offender b
y providing him with individualized treatment; to provide an opportunity for the
reformation of a penitent offender which might be less probable if he were to s
erve a prison sentence; to prevent the commission of offenses; to decongest our
jails; and to save the government much needed finance for maintaining convicts i
n jail Probation is only a privilege. So even if the offender may not be disqual
ified of probation, yet the court believes that because of the crime committed i
t was not advisable to give probation because it would depreciate the effect of
the crime, the court may refuse or deny an application for probation. Generally,
the courts do not grant an application for probation for violation of the Dange
rous Drugs Law, because of the prevalence of the crime. So it is not along the p
urpose of probation to grant the convict the benefit thereof, just the individua
l rehabilitation of the offender but also the best interest of the society and t
he community where the convict would be staying, if he would be released on prob
ation. To allow him loose may bring about a lack of respect of the members of th
e community to the enforcement of penal law. In such a case, the court even if t
he crime is probationable may still deny the benefit of probation. Consider not
only the probationable crime, but also the probationable penalty. If it were the
non-probationable crime, then regardless of the penalty, the convict cannot ava
il of probation. Generally, the penalty which is not probationable is any penalt
y exceeding six years of imprisonment. Offenses which are not probationable are
those against natural security, those against public order and those with refere
nce to subversion. Persons who have been granted of the benefit of probation can
not avail thereof for the second time. Probation is only available once and this
may be availed only where the convict starts serving sentence and provided he h
as not perfected an appeal. If the convict perfected an appeal, he forfeits his
right to apply for probation. As far as offenders who are under preventive impri
sonment, that because a crime committed is not bailable or the crime
Vena V. Verga
committed, although bailable, they cannot afford to put up a bail, upon promulga
tion of the sentence, naturally he goes back to detention, that does not mean th
at they already start serving the sentence even after promulgation of the senten
ce, sentence will only become final and executory after the lapse of the 15-day
period, unless the convict has waived expressly his right to appeal or otherwise
, he has partly started serving sentence and in that case, the penalty will alre
ady be final and exeuctory, no right to probation can be applied for. Probation
shall be denied if the court finds: (1) (2) (3) That the offender is in need of
correctional treatment that can be provided most effectively by his commitment t
o an institution; That there is undue risk that during the period of probation t
he offender will commit another crime; or Probation will depreciate the seriousn
ess of the crime.
The probation law imposes two kinds of conditions: (1) (2) Mandatory conditions;
and Discretionary conditions. iii. Mandatory conditions: (1) The convict must r
eport to the Probation Officer (PO) designated in the court order approving his
application for Probation within 72 hours from receipt of Notice of such order a
pproving his application; and The convict, as a probationer, must report to the

PO at least once a month during the period of probation unless sooner required b
y the PO.
These conditions being mandatory, the moment any of these is violate, the probat
ion is cancelled. Discretionary conditions: The trial court which approved the a
pplication for probation may impose any condition which may be constructive to t
he correction of the offender, provided the same would not violate the constitut
ional rights of the offender and subject to this two restrictions: (1) the condi
tions imposed should not be unduly restrictive of the probationer; and (2) such
condition should not be incompatible with the freedom of conscience of the proba
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grounds by which criminal liability is extinguished. administrative cases but no
t criminal cases. Death of the offender
Vena V. Verga
This is only true to
EXTINCTION OF CRIMINAL LIABILITY Always provide two classifications when answeri
ng this question. Criminal liability is totally extinguished as follows: (1) By
the death of the convict as to personal penalties; and as to pecuniary penalties
, liability therefore is extinguished only when the death of the offender occurs
before final judgment By service of sentence; By amnesty which completely extin
guished the penalty and all its effects; By absolute pardon; By prescription of
the crime; By prescription of the penalty; By the marriage of the offended women
as in the crimes of rape, abduction, seduction and acts of lasciviousness.
(2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7)
Where the offender dies before final judgment, his death extinguishes both his c
riminal and civil liabilities. So while a case is on appeal, the offender dies,
the case on appeal will be dismissed. The offended party may file a separate civ
il action under the Civil Code if any other basis for recovery of civil liabilit
y exists as provided under Art 1157 Civil Code. (People v. Bayotas, decided on S
eptember 2, 1994) Amnesty and pardon The effects of amnesty as well as absolute
pardon are not the same. Amnesty erases not only the conviction but also the cri
me itself. So that if an offender was convicted for rebellion and he qualified f
or amnesty, and so he was given an amnesty, then years later he rebelled again a
nd convicted, is he a recidivist? No. Because the amnesty granted to him erased
not only the conviction but also the effects of the conviction itself. Suppose,
instead of amnesty, what was given was absolute pardon, then years later, the of
fended was again captured and charged for rebellion, he was convicted, is he a r
ecidivist? Yes. Pardon, although absolute does not erase the effects of convicti
on. Pardon only excuses the convict from serving the sentence. There is an excep
tion to this and that is when the pardon was granted when the convict had alread
y served the sentence such that there is no more service of sentence to be execu
ted then the pardon shall be understood as intended to erase the effects of the
conviction. So if the convict has already served the sentence and in spite of th
at he was given a pardon that pardon will cover the effects of the crime and the
refore, if he will be subsequently convicted for a felony embracing the same tit
le as that crime, he cannot be considered a recidivist, because the pardon wipes
out the effects of the crime.
Criminal liability is partially extinguished as follows: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) By
conditional pardon; By commutation of sentence; For good conduct, allowances whi
ch the culprit may earn while he is serving sentence; Parole; and Probation. Tot
al extinction of criminal liability Among the grounds for total extinction as we
ll as those for partial extinction, you cannot find among them the election to p
ublic office. In one case, a public official was charged before the Sandiganbaya
n for violation of Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. During the ensuing elec
tion, he was nevertheless reelected by the constituents, one of the defenses rai
sed was that of condonation of the crime by his constituents, that his constitue
nts have pardoned him. The Supreme Court ruled that the re-election to public of
fice is not one of the
But if he was serving sentence when he was pardoned, that pardon will not wipe o
ut the effects of the crime, unless the language of the pardon absolutely reliev
e the offender of all the effects thereof. Considering that recidivism does not
prescribe, no matter how long ago was the first conviction, he shall still be a
recidivist. Illustrations:

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When the crime carries with it moral turpitude, the offender even if granted par
don shall still remain disqualified from those falling in cases where moral turp
itude is a bar. Pedro was prosecuted and convicted of the crime of robbery and w
as sentenced to six years imprisonment or prision correccional. After serving se
ntence for three years, he was granted absolute pardon. Ten years later, Pedro w
as again prosecuted and convicted of the crime of theft, a crime embraced in the
same title, this time he shall be a recidivist. On the other hand, if he has se
rved all six years of the first sentence, and his name was included in the list
of all those granted absolute pardon, pardon shall relieve him of the effects of
the crime, and therefore even if he commits theft again, he shall not be consid
ered a recidivist. In Monsanto v. Factoran, Jr., 170 SCRA 191, it was held that
absolute pardon does not ipso facto entitle the convict to reinstatement to the
public office forfeited by reason of his conviction. Although pardon restores hi
s eligibility for appointment to that office, the pardoned convict must reapply
for the new appointment . Pardon becomes valid only when there is a final judgme
nt. If given before this, it is premature and hence void. There is no such thing
as a premature amnesty, because it does not require a final judgment; it may be
given before final judgment or after it. Prescription of crime and prescription
of the penalty Prescription of the crime begins, as a general rule on the day t
he crime was committed, unless the crime was concealed, not public, in which cas
e, the prescription thereof would only commence from the time the offended party
or the government learns of the commission of the crime. Commission of the crime
is public -- This does not mean alone that the crime was within public knowledge
or committed in public. Illustration: In the crime of falsification of a docume
nt that was registered in the proper registry of the government like the Registr
y of Property or the Registry of Deeds of the Civil registry, the falsification
is deemed public from the time the falsified document was registered or recorded
in such public office so even though, the offended party may not really know of
the falsification, the prescriptive period of the crime shall already run from
the moment the falsified document was recorded in the public registry. So in the
case where a deed of sale of a parcel of land which was falsified was recorded
in the corresponding Registry of Property, the owner of the land came to know of
the falsified transaction only after 10 years, so he brought the criminal actio
n only then. The Supreme Court ruled that the crime has already prescribed. From
the (2)
Vena V. Verga
moment the falsified document is registered in the Registry of Property, the pre
scriptive period already commenced to run. When a crime prescribes, the State lo
ses the right to prosecute the offender, hence, even though the offender may not
have filed a motion to quash on this ground the trial court, but after convicti
on and during the appeal he learned that at the time the case was filed, the cri
me has already prescribed, such accused can raise the question of prescription e
ven for the first time on appeal, and the appellate court shall have no jurisdic
tion to continue, if legally, the crime has indeed prescribed. The prevailing ru
le now is, prescription of the crime is not waivable, the earlier jurisprudence
to the contrary had already been abrogated or overruled. Moreover, for purposes
of prescription, the period for filing a complaint or information may not be ext
ended at all, even though the last day such prescriptive period falls on a holid
ay or a Sunday. For instance, light felony prescribes in 60 days or two months.
If the 60 th day falls on a Sunday, the filing of the complaint on the succeedin
g Monday is already fatal to the prosecution of the crime because the crime has
already prescribed. The rules on Criminal Procedure for purposes of prescription
is that the filing of the complaint even at the public prosecutors office suspen
ds the running of the prescriptive period, but not the filing with the barangay.
So the earlier rulings to the contrary are already abrogated by express provisi
on of the Revised Rules on Criminal Procedure. The prescription of the crime is
interrupted or suspended (1) When a complaint is filed in a proper barangay for
conciliation or mediation as required by Chapter 7, Local Government Code, but t

he suspension of the prescriptive period is good only for 60 days. After which t
he prescription will resume to run, whether the conciliation or mediation is ter
minated for not; When criminal case is filed in the prosecutors office, the presc
ription of the crime is suspended until the accused is convicted or the proceedi
ng is terminated for a cause not attributable to the accused.
But where the crime is subject to Summary Procedure, the prescription of the cri
me will be suspended only when the information is already filed with the trial c
ourt. It is not the filing of the complaint, but the filing of the information i
n the trial which will suspend the prescription of the crime. On the prescriptio
n of the penalty, the period will only commence to run when the convict has begu
n to serve the sentence. Actually, the penalty will prescribe from the moment th
e convict evades the service of the sentence. So if an accused was convicted in
the trial court, and the conviction becomes final
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and executory, so this fellow was arrested to serve the sentence, on the way to
the penitentiary, the vehicle carrying him collided with another vehicle and ove
rturned, thus enabling the prisoner to escape, no matter how long such convict h
as been a fugitive from justice, the penalty imposed by the trial court will nev
er prescribe because he has not yet commenced the service of his sentence. For t
he penalty to prescribe, he must be brought to Muntinlupa, booked there, placed
inside the cell and thereafter he escapes. Whether it is prescription of crime o
r prescription of penalty, if the subject could leave the Philippines and go to
a country with whom the Philippines has no extradition treaty, the prescriptive
period of the crime or penalty shall remain suspended whenever he is out of the
country. When the offender leaves for a country to which the Philippines has an
extradition treaty, the running of the prescriptive period will go on even if th
e offender leaves Philippine territory for that country. Presently the Philippin
es has an extradition treaty with Taiwan, Indonesia, Canada, Australia, USA and
Switzerland. So if the offender goes to any of these countries, the prescriptive
period still continues to run. In the case of the prescription of the penalty,
the moment the convict commits another crime while he is fugitive from justice,
prescriptive period of the penalty shall be suspended and shall not run in the m
eantime. The crime committed does not include the initial evasion of service of
sentence that the convict must perform before the penalty shall begin to prescri
be, so that the initial crime of evasion of service of sentence does not suspend
the prescription of penalty, it is the commission of other crime, after the con
vict has evaded the service of penalty that will suspend such period. Marriage I
n the case of marriage, do not say that it is applicable for the crimes under Ar
ticle 344. It is only true in the crimes of rape, abduction, seduction and acts
of lasciviousness. Do not say that it is applicable to private crimes because th
e term includes adultery and concubinage. Marriages in these cases may even comp
ound the crime of adultery or concubinage. It is only in the crimes of rape, abd
uction, seduction and acts of lasciviousness that the marriage by the offender w
ith the offended woman shall extinguish civil liability, not only criminal liabi
lity of the principal who marries the offended woman, but also that of the accom
plice and accessory, if there are any. Co-principals who did not themselves dire
ctly participate in the execution of the crime but who only cooperated, will als
o benefit from such marriage, but not when such co-principal himself took direct
part in the execution of the crime. Marriage as a ground for extinguishing civi
l liability must have been contracted in good faith. The offender who marries th
e offended woman must be sincere in the marriage and therefore must actually per
form the duties of a husband
Vena V. Verga
after the marriage, otherwise, notwithstanding such marriage, the offended woman
, although already his wife can still prosecute him again, although the marriage
remains a valid marriage. Do not think that the marriage is avoided or annulled
. The marriage still subsists although the offended woman may refile the complai
nt. The Supreme Court ruled that marriage contemplated must be a real marriage a
nd not one entered to and not just to evade punishment for the crime committed b
ecause the offender will be compounding the wrong he has committed. Partial exti
nction of criminal liability Good conduct allowance This includes the allowance
for loyalty under Article 98, in relation to Article 158. A convict who escapes
the place of confinement on the occasion of disorder resulting from a conflagrat
ion, earthquake or similar catastrophe or during a mutiny in which he has not pa
rticipated and he returned within 48 hours after the proclamation that the calam
ity had already passed, such convict shall be given credit of 1/5 of the origina
l sentence from that allowance for his loyalty of coming back. Those who did not
leave the penitentiary under such circumstances do not get such allowance for l
oyalty. Article 158 refers only to those who leave and return. Parole This corre
spondingly extinguishes service of sentence up to the maximum of the indetermina
te sentence. This is the partial extinction referred to, so that if the convict
was never given parole, no partial extinction. CIVIL LIABILITY OF THE OFFENDER C

ivil liability of the offender falls under three categories: (1) (2) (3) Restitu
tion and restoration; Reparation of the damage caused; and Indemnification of co
nsequential damages.
Restitution or restoration Restitution or restoration presupposes that the offen
ded party was divested of property, and such property must be returned. If the p
roperty is in the hands
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of a third party, the same shall nevertheless be taken away from him and restore
d to the offended party, even though such third party may be a holder for value
and a buyer in good faith of the property, except when such third party buys the
property from a public sale where the law protects the buyer. For example, if a
third party bought a property in a public auction conducted by the sheriff levi
ed on the property of a judgment creditor for an obligation, the buyer of the pr
operty at such execution sale is protected by law. The offended party cannot div
est him thereof. So the offended party may only resort to reparation of the dama
ge done from the offender. Some believed that this civil liability is true only
in crimes against property, this is not correct. Regardless of the crime committ
ed, if the property is illegally taken from the offended party during the commis
sion of the crime, the court may direct the offender to restore or restitute suc
h property to the offended party. It can only be done if the property is brought
within the jurisdiction of that court. For example, in a case where the offende
r committed rape, during the rape, the offender got on of the earrings of the vi
ctim. When apprehended, the offender was prosecuted for rape and theft. When the
offender was asked why he got on of the earrings of the victim, the offender di
sclosed that he took one of the earrings in order to have a souvenir of the sexu
al intercourse. Supreme Court ruled that the crime committed is not theft and ra
pe but rape and unjust vexation for the taking of the earring. The latter crime
is not a crime against property, this is a crime against personal security and l
iberty under Title IX of Book II of the RPC. And yet, the offender was required
to restore or restitute the earring to the offended woman. Property will have to
be restored to the offended party even this would require the taking of the pro
perty from a third person. Where personal property was divested from the offende
d party pursuant to the commission of the crime, the one who took the same or ac
cepted the same would be doing so without the benefit of the just title. So even
if the property may have been bought by the third person, the same may be taken
from him and restored to the offended party without an obligation on the part o
f the offended party to pay him whatever he paid. The right to recover what he h
as paid will be against the offender who sold it to him. On the other hand, if t
he crime was theft or robbery, the one who received the personal property become
s a fence, he is not only required to restitute the personal property but he inc
urs criminal liability in violation of the Anti-Fencing Law. If the property can
not be restituted anymore, then the damage must be repaired, requiring the offen
der to pay the value thereof, as determined by the court. That value includes th
e sentimental value to the offended party, not only the replacement cost. In mos
t cases, the sentimental value is higher than the replacement value. But if what
would be restored is brand new, then there will
Vena V. Verga
be an allowance for depreciation, otherwise, the offended party is allowed to en
rich himself at the expense of the offender. So there will be a corresponding de
preciation and the offended party may even be required to pay something just to
cover the difference of the value of what was restored to him. The obligation of
the offender transcends to his heirs, even if the offender dies, provided he di
ed after judgment became final, the heirs shall assume the burden of the civil l
iability, but this is only to the extent that they inherit property from the dec
eased, if they do not inherit, they cannot inherit the obligations. The right of
the offended party transcends to heirs upon death. The heirs of the offended pa
rty step into the shoes of the latter to demand civil liability from the offende
r. Reparation of the damage caused In case of human life, reparation of the dama
ge cause is basically P50,000.00 value of human life, exclusive of other forms o
f damages. This P50,000.00 may also increase whether such life was lost through
intentional felony or criminal negligence, whether the result of dolo or culpa.
Also in the crime of rape, the damages awarded to the offended woman is generall
y P30,000.00 for the damage to her honor. In earlier rulings, the amount varied,
whether the offended woman is younger or a married woman. Supreme Court ruled t
hat even if the offended woman does not adduce evidence or such damage, court ca

n take judicial notice of the fact that if a woman was raped, she inevitably suf
fers damages. Under the Revised Rules on Criminal Procedure, a private prosecuto
r can recover all kinds of damages including attorneys fee. The only limitation i
s that the amount and the nature of the damages should be specified. The present
procedural law does not allow a blanket recovery of damages. Each kind of damag
es must be specified and the amount duly proven. Indemnification of consequentia
l damages Indemnification of consequential damages refers to the loss of earning
s, loss of profits. This does not refer only to consequential damages suffered b
y the offended party; this also includes consequential damages to third party wh
o also suffer because of the commission of the crime. The offender carnapped a b
ridal car while the newly-weds were inside the church. Since the car was only re
nted, consequential damage not only to the newly-weds but also to the entity whi
ch rented the car to them. Most importantly, refer to the persons who are civill
y liable under Articles 102 and 103. This pertains to the owner, proprietor of h
otels, inns, taverns and
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similar establishments, an obligation to answer civilly for the loss or property
of their guests. Under Articloe 102, two conditions must be present before liab
ility attaches to the inkeepers, tavernkeepers and proprietors: (1) The guest mu
st have informed the management in advance of his having brought to the premises
certain valuables aside from the usual personal belongings of the guest; and Th
e guest must have followed the rules and regulations prescribed by the managemen
t of such inn, tavern, or similar establishment regarding the safekeeping of sai
d valuables.
Vena V. Verga
employer in order to enforce the subsidiary civil liability for the crime commit
ted by his employee, it is enough that the writ of execution is returned unsatis
fied. There is no denial of due process of law because the liability of the empl
oyer is subsidiary and not primary. He will only be liable if his employee does
not have the property to pay his civil liability, since it is the law itself tha
t provides that such subsidiary liability exists and ignorance of the law is not
an excuse. Civil liability of the offender is extinguished in the same manner a
s civil obligation is extinguished but this is not absolutely true. Under civil
law, a civil obligation is extinguished upon loss of the thing due when the thin
g involved is specific. This is not a ground applicable to extinction of civil l
iability in criminal case if the thing due is lost, the offender shall repair th
e damages caused. When there are several offenders, the court in the exercise of
its discretion shall determine what shall be the share of each offender dependi
ng upon the degree of participation as principal, accomplice or accessory. If wi
thin each class of offender, there are more of them, such as more than one princ
ipal or more than one accomplice or accessory, the liability in each class of of
fender shall be subsidiary. Anyone of the may be required to pay the civil liabi
lity pertaining to such offender without prejudice to recovery from those whose
share have been paid by another. If all the principals are insolvent, the obliga
tion shall devolve upon the accomplice(s) or accessory(s). But whoever pays shal
l have the right of covering the share of the obligation from those who did not
pay but are civilly liable. To relate with Article 38, when there is an order or
preference of pecuniary (monetary) liability, therefore, restitution is not inc
luded here. There is not subsidiary penalty for non-payment of civil liability.
Subsidiary civil liability is imposed in the following: (1) In case of a felony
committed under the compulsion of an irresistible force. The person who employed
the irresistible force is subsidiarily liable; In case of a felony committed un
der an impulse of an equal or greater injury. The person who generated such an i
mpulse is subsidiarily liable.
The Supreme Court ruled that even though the guest did not obey the rules and re
gulations prescribed by the management for safekeeping of the valuables, this do
es not absolve management from the subsidiary civil liability. Noncompliance wit
h such rules and regulations but the guests will only be regarded as contributor
y negligence, but it wont absolve the management from civil liability. Liability
specially attaches when the management is found to have violated any law or ordi
nance, rule or regulation governing such establishment. Even if the crime is rob
bery with violence against or intimidation of persons or committed by the inkeep
ers employees, management will be liable, otherwise, not liable because there is
duress from the offender, liable only for theft and force upon things. Under Art
icle 103, the subsidiary liability of an employer or master for the crime commit
ted by his employee or servant may attach only when the following requisites con
cur: (1) (2) (3) (4) The employer must be engaged in business or in trade or ind
ustry while the accused was his employee; At the time the crime was committed, t
he employee-employerr relationship must be existing between the two; The employe
e must have been found guilty of the crime charged and accordingly held civilly
liable; The writ of execution for the satisfaction of the civil liability was re

turned unsatisfied because the accused-employee does not have enough property to
pay the civil liability.
When these requisites concur, the employer will be subsidiarily civilly liable f
or the full amount that his employee was adjudged civilly liable. It is already
settled in jurisprudence that there is no need to file a civil action against th
The owners of taverns, inns, motels, hotels, where the crime is committed within
their establishment due to noncompliance with general police regulations, if th
e offender who is primarily liable cannot pay, the proprietor, or owner is subsi
diarily liable.
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Felonies committed by employees, pupils, servants in the course of their employm
ent, schooling or household chores. The employer, master, teacher is subsidiaril
y liable civilly, while the offender is primarily liable. In case the accomplice
and the principal cannot pay, the liability of those subsidiarily liable is abs
olute. COMPLEX CRIME Philosophy behind plural crimes: The treatment of plural cr
imes as one is to be lenient to the offender, who, instead of being made to suff
er distinct penalties for every resulting crime is made to suffer one penalty on
ly, although it is the penalty for the most serious one and is in the maximum pe
riod. Purpose is in the pursuance of the rule of pro reo. If be complexing the c
rime, the penalty would turn out to be higher, do not complex anymore. Example:
Murder and theft (killed with treachery, then stole the right). Penalty: If comp
lex Reclusion temporal maximum to death. If treated individually Reclusion tempo
ral to Reclusion Perpetua. Complex crime is not just a matter of penalty, but of
substance under the Revised Penal Code. Plurality of crimes may be in the form
of: (1) (2) (3) Compound crime; Complex crime; and Composite crime.
Vena V. Verga
iv. Composite Crime/Special Complex Crime This is one which in substance is made
up of more than one crime but which in the eyes of the law is only a single ind
ivisible offense. This is also known as a special complex crime. Examples are ro
bbery with homicide, robbery with rape, and rape with homicide. The compound cri
me and the complex crime are treated in Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code. Bu
t in such article, a compound crime is also designated as a complex crime, but co
mplex crimes are limited only to a situation where the resulting felonies are gra
ve and/or less grave. Whereas in a compound crime, there is no limit as to the g
ravity of the resulting crimes as long as a single act brings about two or more
crimes. Strictly speaking, compound crimes are not limited to grave or less grav
e felonies but covers all single act that results in two or more crimes. Illustr
ation: A person threw a hand grenade and the people started scampering. When the
hand grenade exploded, no on was seriously wounded all were mere wounded. It wa
s held that this is a compound crime, although the resulting felonies are only s
light. Illustration of a situation where the term necessary in complex crime shoul
d not be understood as indispensable: Abetting committed during the encounter be
tween rebels and government troops such that the homicide committed cannot be co
mplexed with rebellion. This is because they are indispensable part of rebellion
. (Caveat: Ortega says rebellion can be complexed with common crimes in discussi
on on Rebellion) The complex crime lies actually in the first form under Article
A compound crime is one where a single act produces two or more crimes. A comple
x crime strictly speaking is one where the offender has to commit an offense as
a means for the commission of another offense. It is said that the offense is co
mmitted as a necessary means to commit the other offense. Necessary should not be
understood as indispensable, otherwise, it shall be considered absorbed and not
giving rise to a complex crime. A composite crime is one in which substance is m
ade up of more than one crime, but which in the eyes of the law is only a single
indivisible offense. This is also known as special complex crime. Examples are
robbery with homicide, robbery with rape, rape with homicide. These are crimes w
hich in the eyes of the law are regarded only as a single indivisible offense.
The first form of the complex crime is actually a compound crime, is one where a
single act constitutes two or more grave and/or less grave felonies. The basis
in complexing or compounding the crime is the act. So that when an offender perf
ormed more than one act, although similar, if they result in separate crimes, th
ere is no complex crime at all, instead, the offender shall be prosecuted for as
many crimes as are committed under separate information. When the single act br
ings about two or more crimes, the offender is punished with only one penalty, a
lthough in the maximum period, because he acted only with single criminal impuls

e. The presumption is that, since there is only one act formed, it follows that
there is only one criminal impulse and correctly, only one penalty should be imp
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Conversely, when there are several acts performed, the assumption is that each a
ct is impelled by a distinct criminal impulse and for ever criminal impulse, a s
eparate penalty. However, it may happen that the offender is impelled only by a
single criminal impulse in committing a series of acts that brought about more t
han one crime, considering that Criminal Law, if there is only one criminal impu
lse which brought about the commission of the crime, the offender should be pena
lized only once. There are in fact cases decided by the Supreme Court where the
offender has performed a series of acts but the acts appeared to be impelled by
one and the same impulse, the ruling is that a complex crime is committed. In th
is case it is not the singleness of the act but the singleness of the impulse th
at has been considered. There are cases where the Supreme Court held that the cr
ime committed is complex even though the offender performed not a single act but
a series of acts. The only reason is that the series of acts are impelled by a
single criminal impulse. CONTINUED AND CONTINUING CRIMES In criminal law, when a
series of acts are perpetrated in pursuance of a single criminal impulse, there
is what is called a continued crime. In criminal procedure for purposes of venu
e, this is referred to as a continuing crime. The term continuing crimes as someti
mes used in lieu of the term continued crimes, however, although both terms are an
alogous, they are not really used with the same import. Continuing crime is the te
rm used in criminal procedure to denote that a certain crime may be prosecuted a
nd tried not only before the court of the place where it was originally committe
d or began, but also before the court of the place where the crime was continued
. Hence, the term continuing crime is used in criminal procedure when any of the m
aterial ingredients of the crime was committed in different places. A continued c
rime is one where the offender performs a series of acts violating one and the sa
me penal provision committed at the same place and about the same time for the s
ame criminal purpose, regardless of a series of acts done, it is regarded in law
as one. In People v. de Leon, where the accused took five roosters from one and
the same chicken coop, although, the roosters were owned by different persons,
it was held that there is only one crime of theft committed, because the accused
acted out of a single criminal impulse only. However performing a series of act
s but this is one and the same intent Supreme Court ruled that only one crime is
committed under one information. In People v. Lawas, the accused constabulary s
oldiers were ordered to march with several muslims from one barrio to another pl
ace. These soldiers feared that on the way, some of the Muslims may escape. So L
awas ordered the men to tie the Muslims by the hand connecting one with the othe
r, so no one would
Vena V. Verga
run away. When the hands of the Muslims were tied, one of them protested, he did
not want to be included among those who were tied becase he was a Hajji, so the
Hajji remonstrated and there was commotion. At the height of the commotion, Law
as ordered his men to fire, and the soldiers mechanically fired. Eleven were kil
led and several others were wounded. The question of whether the constabulary so
ldiers should be prosecuted for the killing of each under a separate information
has reached the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court ruled that the accused should
be prosecuted only in one information, because a complex crime of multiple homic
ide was committed by them. In another case, a band of robbers came across a comp
ound where a sugar mill is located. The workers of said mill have their quarters
within the compound. The band of robbers ransacked the different quarters there
in. It was held that there is only one crime committed multiple robbery, not bec
ause of Article 48 but because this is a continued crime. When the robbers enter
ed the compound, they were moved by a single criminal intent. Not because there
were several quarters robbed. This becomes a complex crime. The definition in Ar
ticle 48 is not honored because the accused did not perform a single act. There
were a series of acts, but the decision in the Lawas case is correct. The confus
ion lies in this. While Article 48 speaks of a complex crime where a single act
constitutes two or more grave or less grave offenses, even those cases when the
act is not a single but a series of acts resulting to two or more grave and less

grave felonies, the Supreme Court considered this as a complex crime when the a
ct is the product of one single criminal impulse. If confronted with a problem,
use the standard or condition that it refers not only to the singleness of the a
ct which brought two or more grave and/less grave felonies. The Supreme Court ha
s extended this class of complex crime to those cases when the offender performe
d not a single act but a series of acts as long as it is the product of a single
criminal impulse. You cannot find an article in the Revised Penal Code with res
pect to the continued crime or continuing crime. The nearest article is Article
48. Such situation is also brought under the operation of Article 48. In People
v. Garcia, the accused were convicts who were members of a certain gang and they
conspired to kill the other gang. Some of the accused killed their victims in o
ne place within the same penitentiary, some killed the others in another place w
ithin the same penitentiary. The Supreme Court ruled that all accused should be
punished under one information because they acted in conspiracy. The act of one
is the act of all. Because there were several victims killed and some were morta
lly wounded, the accused should be held for the complex crime of multiple homici
de with multiple frustrated homicide. There is a complex crime not only when the
re is a single act but a series of acts. It is correct that when the offender ac
ted in conspiracy, this crime is considered as one and prosecuted under one info
rmation. Although in this case, the offenders did not only kill one person but k
illed different persons, so it is clear that in killing of one victim or the kil
ling of another victim, another act
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out of this is done simultaneously. Supreme Court considered this as complex. Al
though the killings did not result from one single act. In criminal procedure, i
t is prohibited to charge more than one offense in an information, except when t
he crimes in one information constitute a complex crime or a special complex cri
me. So whenever the Supreme Court concludes that the criminal should be punished
only once, because they acted in conspiracy or under the same criminal impulse,
it is necessary to embody these crimes under one single information. It is nece
ssary to consider them as complex crimes even if the essence of the crime does n
ot fit the definition of Art 48, because there is no other provision in the RPC.
Duplicity of offenses, in order not to violate this rule, it must be called a c
omplex crime. In earlier rulings on abduction with rape, if several offenders ab
ducted the woman and abused her, there is multiple rape. The offenders are to be
convicted of one count of rape and separately charged of the other rapes. In Pe
ople v. Jose, there were four participants here. They abducted the woman, after
which, the four took turns in abusing her. It was held that each one of the four
became liable not only for his own rape but also for those committed by the oth
ers. Each of the four offenders was convicted of four rapes. In the eyes of the
law, each committed four crimes of rape. One of the four rapes committed by one
of them was complexed with the crime of abduction. The other three rapes are dis
tinct counts of rape. The three rapes are not necessary to commit the other rape
s. Therefore, separate complaints/information. In People v. Pabasa, the Supreme
Court through Justice Aquino ruled that there is only one count of forcible abdu
ction with rape committed by the offenders who abducted the two women and abused
them several times. This was only a dissenting opinion of Justice Aquino, that
there could be only one complex crimeof abduction with rape, regardless of the n
umber of rapes committed because all the rapes are but committed out of one and
the same lewd design which impelled the offender to abduct the victim. In People
v. Bojas, the Supreme Court followed the ruling in People v. Jose that the four
men who abducted and abused the offended women were held liable for one crime o
ne count or forcible abudction with rape and distinct charges for rape for the o
ther rapes committed by them. In People v. Bulaong, the Supreme Court adopted th
e dissenting opinion of Justice Aquino in People v. Pabasa, that when several pe
rsons abducted a woman and abused her, regardless of the number of rapes committ
ed, there should only be one complex crime of forcible abduction with rape. The
Vena V. Verga
committed were in the nature of a continued crime characterized by the same lewd
design which is an essential element in the crime of forcible abduction. The ab
use amounting to rape is complexed with forcible abduction because the abduction
was already consummated when the victim was raped. The forcible abduction must
be complexed therewith. But the multiple rapes should be considered only as one
because they are in the nature of a continued crime. Note: This is a dangerous v
iew because the abductors will commit as much rape as they can, after all, only
one complex crime of rape would arise. In adultery, each intercourse constitutes
one crime. Apparently, the singleness of the act is not considered a single cri
me. Each intercourse brings with it the danger of bringing one stranger in the f
amily of the husband. Article 48 also applies in cases when out of a single act
of negligence or imprudence, two or more grave or less grave felonies resulted,
although only the first part thereof (compound crime). The second part of Articl
e 48 does not apply, referring to the complex crime proper because this applies
or refers only to a deliberate commission of one offense to commit another offen
se. However, a light felony may result from criminal negligence or imprudence, t
ogether with other grave or less grave felonies resulting therefrom and the Supr
eme Court held that all felonies resulting from criminal negligence should be ma
de subject of one information only. The reason being that, there is only one inf
ormation and prosecution only. Otherwise, it would be tantamount to splitting th
e criminal negligence similar to splitting a cause of action which is prohibited
in civil cases. Although under Article 48, a light felony should not be include

d in a complex crime, yet by virtue of this ruling of the Supreme Court, the lig
ht felony shall be included in the same information charging the offender with g
rave and/or less grave felonies resulting from the negligence of reckless imprud
ence and this runs counter to the provision of Article 48. So while the Supreme
Court ruled that the light felony resulting from the same criminal negligence sh
ould be complexed with the other felonies because that would be a blatant violat
ion of Article 48, instead the Supreme Court stated that an additional penalty s
hould be imposed for the light felony. This would mean two penalties to be impos
ed, one for the complex crime and one for the light felony. It cannot separate t
he light felony because it appears that the culpa is crime itself and you cannot
split the crime. Applying the concept of the continued crime, the following cases
have been treated as constituting one crime only: (1) The theft of 13 cows belo
nging to two different persons committed by the accused at the same place and pe
riod of time (People v. Tumlos, 67 Phil. 320);
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Vena V. Verga
The theft of six roosters belonging to two different owners from the same coop a
nd at the same period of time (People v. Jaranillo); The illegal charging of fee
s for service rendered by a lawyer every time he collects veterans benefits on be
half of a client who agreed that attorneys fees shall be paid out of such benefit
s (People v. Sabbun, 10 SCAR 156). The collections of legal fees were impelled b
y the same motive, that of collecting fees for services rendered, and all acts o
f collection were made under the same criminal impulse.
EXTINCTION OF CRIMINAL LIABILITY Death of the convict as to the personal penalti
es before final judgment By service of the sentence By amnesty which completely
extinguishes the penalty and all its effects BY prescription of the crime By pre
scription of the penalty By the marriage of the offended party (rape)
On the other hand, the Supreme Court declined to apply the concept in the follow
ing cases:
Two Estafa cases, one which was committed during the period from January 19 to D
ecember, 1955 and the other from January 1956 to July 1956 (People v. Dichupa, 1
3 Phil 306). Said acts were committed on two different occasions; Several malver
sations committed in May, June and July 1936 and falsifications to conceal said
offenses committed in August and October, 1936. The malversations and falsificat
ions were not the result of one resolution to embezzle and falsify (People v. CI
V, 66 Phil. 351); Seventy-five estafa cases committed by the conversion by the a
gents of collections from the customers of the employer made on different dates.
US vs. MADLANGBAYAN Keyword: spy; amnesty; crime politically motivated Issue: W/
N the civil aspect is extinguished too on account of amnesty. Decision: No. The
dismissal of the criminal action does not extinguish the civil responsibility. T
he idea of amnesty wipes out the crime cannot not be carried to the extent of sa
ying, for the purpose of depriving a person of a legal civil right to which he w
as entitled, that the criminal act never existed. Issue: Should the case be dism
issed and accused acquitted since the crime was politically motivated. Decision:
No.. The accused must first show compliance with the requirements for availing
himself of the benefits like taking the required oath. Upon filing in the court,
the oath, the case will be dismissed. Dismissal of the case will not be without
prejudice to the right of the widow to enforce the civil liability of the accus
ed. ARTICLE 91 (PRESCRIPTION) Period of prescription shall run from the day on w
hich the crime is discovered by the offended party. The authorities, or their ag
ents and shall be interrupted by the filling of the complaint or information and
shall commence to run again when such proceedings terminate without the accused
being convicted or acquitted. Prescription shall not run when offender is not i
n the Philippines. PEOPLE vs. SANDIGANBAYAN Keyword: Torrens; registration of pu
blic document Issue: W/N the act charged has already prescribed. Decision: Yes.
The date of the violation of the law becomes the operative date for the commence
ment of the period of prescription. The date of computing the period of prescrip
tion would be from the date of the filing of the application. Even if the ten ye
ar period commenced to run from the registration and

In the theft cases, the trend is to follow the single larceny doctrine, that is
taking of several things, whether belonging to the same or different owners, at
the same time and place, constitutes one larceny only. Many courts have abandone
d the separate larceny doctrine, under which there was distinct larceny as to th
e property of each victim. Also abandoned is the doctrine that the government ha
s the discretion to prosecute the accused for one offense or for as many distinc
t offenses as there are victims (Santiago v. Justice Garchitorena, decided on De
cember 2, 1993). Here, the accused was charged with performing a single act that
of approving the legalization of aliens not qualified under the law. The prosec
ution manifested that they would only file one information. Subsequently, 32 ame
nded informations were filed. The Supreme Court directed the prosecution to cons
olidate the cases into one offense because (1) they were in violation of the sam
e law Executive Order No. 324; (2) caused injury to one party only the governmen
t; and (3) they were done in the same day. The concept of delito continuado has
been applied to crimes under special laws since in Article 10, the Revised Penal
Code shall be supplementary to special laws, unless the latter provides the con
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issuance of the free patent title by the register of deed, registration being a
constructive notice to the whole word, the prescriptive period would lapse on 19
86 or 5 months before the filing of the complaint. PEOPLE vs. REYES Keyword: pre
scription of crime; filling in the register of deeds Issue: W/N the crime prescr
ibed Decision: Yes. The criminal action has been extinguished by prescription. T
he title, once registered is a notice to the world. All persons must take notice
. Considering the lapse of more than 20 years, the crimes charges already prescr
ibed. Issue: Does Art. 91 cannot be construed in such manner as to admit applica
tion of the rule on construction. Decision: No. Although caution should be obser
ved in applying the rule of construction in civil cases, the court will not hesi
tate to do so if the factual and legal circumstance so warrant. The application
of the rule on constructive notice in the construction of Article 92 of the RPC
would most certainly be favorable to the accused since the prescriptive period o
f the crime shall have to be reckoned with earlier. The criminal offense of fals
ification of public document has already prescribed. MONSANTO vs. FACTORAN Keywo
rds: Estafa; falsification of public documents. FULL and ABSOLUTE FREEDOM: Subje
ct to the limitations imposed by the constitution, the pardoning power cannot be
restricted or controlled by the legislative action. Absolute pardon dies not bl
ot out the crime committed. Pardon if granted before conviction, it prevents any
penalties and disabilities, consequent upon condition, from attaching. If grant
ed after conviction, it removes penalties and disabilities and restores him to a
ll his civil rights. The very essence of pardon is forgiveness and remission of
guilt. Pardon implies guilt, thus, it does no erase the crime and the conviction
thereof. This is the reason why the employee is not entitled to backpay when pa
rdoned. ARTICLE 100 Every person criminally liable for a felony in also civilly
liable. STEIMETZ vs. VALDEZ Keyword: 2 vehicles collided in intersection; victim
cannot collect from the driver. Issue: W/N the drivers employer can be civilly l
Vena V. Verga
Decision: No. the employer is not engaged in business or industry and merely use
s automobile for private ends. The employer was also no in the automobile when t
he accident happened and when it exercised due diligence in choosing a driver, t
he employer cannot be civilly liable. MARQUEZ vs. CASTILLO Keyword: Chauffer, MC
the employer did not know his car was used. victim died. Issue: Can the employe
r be held liable. Decision: No. Where it admitted that the employer did not know
that his chauffer was using the car that day and the he exercised due diligence
in hiring the chauffer, the employer can not be held liable. The subsidiary lia
bility of the master only takes place when the servant, subordinate or employee
commits a punishable criminal act while in the actual performance of his own ord
inary duties and he was innocent thereby rendering incapable of satisfying by hi
mself his own liability. VARELA vs. FINNICK Keyword: Estafa of jewels; pawned in
stead of selling them. Issue: W/N the jewels can be recovered. Decision: Yes. Ev
ery person criminally liable for a crime or misdemeanor is also civilly liable.
The owner has an absolute right to the jewels from the possession of whoever hol
ds them, in accordance with the judgment entered in the aforesaid cause for esta
fa. REYES vs. RUIZ Keyword: Defraud; jewels Issue: W/N the owner of the jewels d
irect four pawnshops to restore the jewels without indemnity on the party of the
petitioner. Decision: Yes. Among the civil responsibilities incurred by a perso
n committing estafa is that of restoring the thing taken. The jewels were pawned
without the knowledge of the owner thus must be restored by the pawnshop owners
. If restitution is impossible, they may repatriate for the injury or indemnify
the owner. US vs. VILLALOBOS Keyword: Theft of carabao. Another person aided in
procuring registration certificate. Issue: W/N that person is mere accessory to
the theft or principal. The

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Vena V. Verga
exist independently of the criminal responsibility, the extinction of the latter
by death, ipso facto extinguishes the former, provided, of course, that death s
upervenes before final judgment. The said principle does not apply in instant ca
se wherein the civil liability springs neither solely nor originally from the cr
ime itself but from a civil contract of purchase and sale. 1. Death of the accus
ed pending appeal of his conviction extinguishes his criminal liability as well
as the civil liability based solely thereon. 2. Corollarily, the claim for civil
liability survives notwithstanding the death of accused, if the same may also b
e predicated on a source of obligation other than delict. 3. Where the civil lia
bility survives, as explained in Number 2 above, an action for recovery therefor
e may be pursued but only by way of filing a separate civil action and subject t
o Section 1, Rule 111 of the 1985 Rules on Criminal Procedure as amended. This s
eparate civil action may be enforced either against the executor/administrator o
r the estate of the accused, depending an the source of obligation upon which th
e same is based as explained above. 4. Finally, the private offended party need
not fear a forfeiture of his right to file this separate civil action by prescri
ption, in cases where -during the prosecution of the criminal action and prior t
o its extinction, the privateoffended party instituted together therewith the ci
vil action. In such case, the statute of limitations on the civil liability is d
eemed interrupted during the pendency of the criminal case, conformably with pro
visions of the Civil Code, that should thereby avoid any apprehension on a possi
ble privation of right by prescription.
Decision: Yes. A number of stolen carabao were found in the possession of a pers
on who kept them hidden for a time and, a few days prior to their recovery, alte
red the brands on the animals. Thus, unless it be satisfactorily shown that the
property was stolen by some other person, he must be presumed to be the author o
f the theft and not merely an accessory. His participation as an accessory canno
t be admitted. He is principal to the crime. Although stolen property is acquire
d in good faith by a third party, he can not lawfully withhold the possession th
ereof from the true owner and insist upon reimbursement, before delivery. PEOPLE
vs. BAYOTAS Keyword: Rape; SC dismissed the criminal aspect Issue: Does death o
f the accused pending appeal of his conviction extinguish his civil liability. D
ecision: Yes. The case of People v. Castillo, this issue was settled in the affi
rmative. With reference to Castillo s criminal liability, them is no question. T
he law is plain. Statutory construction is unnecessary. Said liability is exting
uished. The civil liability, however, poses a problem. Such liability is extingu
ished only when the death of the offender occurs before final judgment. It shoul
d be stressed that the extinction of civil liability follows the extinction of t
he criminal liability under Article 89, only when the civil liability arises fro
m the criminal act as its only basis. Stated differently, where the civil liabil
ity does not
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