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SORIANO VS. SANDIGANBAYAN [131 SCRA 184; G.R. NO.

L-
65952; 31 JUL 1984]

Facts: Tan was accused of qualified theft. The petitioner, who was an Asst.
Fiscal, was assigned to investigate. In the course of the investigation, petitioner
demanded Php.4000 from Tan as price for dismissing the case. Tan reported it
to the NBI which set up anentrapment. Tan was given a Php.2000, marked bill,
and he had supplied the other half. The entrapment succeeded and an
information was filed with the Sandiganbayan. After trial, the Sandiganbayan
rendered a decision finding the petitioner guilty as a principal in violating the
Anti Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (R.A.3019). A motion for reconsideration
was denied by the Sandiganbayan, hence this instant petition.

Issue: Whether or Not the investigation conducted by the petitioner can be


regarded as contract or transaction within the purview of .RA.3019.

Held: R.A. 3019 Sec.3. Corrupt practices of public officers - In addition to


acts or omissions of public officers already penalized by existing laws, the
following shall constitute corrupt practices of any public officer and
arehereby declared to be unlawful: xxx b. Directly or indirectly requesting or
receiving any gift, present, share percentage or benefit, for himself or for other
person, in connection with any contract or transaction between the Govt. and
any other party wherein the public officer in his official capacity has to intervene
under the law.

The petitioner stated that the facts make out a case of direct bribery under
Art.210 of the RPC and not a violation of R.A. 3019 sec.3 (b). The offense of
direct bribery is not the offense charged and is not included in
the offense charged which is violation of R.A.3019 sec.3 (b).

The respondent claimed that, transaction as used hereof, is not limited to


commercial or business transaction, but includes all kinds of transaction
whether commercial, civil, or administrative in nature.

The court agrees with the petitioner. It is obvious that the investigation
conducted by the petitioner was neither a contract nor transaction. A
transaction like a contract is one which involves some consideration as in credit
transactions. And this element is absent in the investigation conducted by the
petitioner.

Judgment modified. Petitioner is guilty of direct bribery under Art.210 of the


RPC.