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CHAPTER II. THE LAWYER AND THE LEGAL PROFESSION

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CANON 7-13

CANON 9 - A LAWYER SHALL NOT, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY, ASSIST

IN THE UNAUTHORIZED PRACTICE OF LAW.

CANON 7 - A LAWYER SHALL AT ALL TIMES UPHOLD THE

INTEGRITY AND DIGNITY OF THE LEGAL PROFESSION AND

SUPPORT THE ACTIVITIES OF THE INTEGRATED BAR.

Rule 7.01 - A lawyer shall be answerable for knowingly making a false statement or suppressing a material fact in connection with his application for admission to the bar.

Rule 7.02 - A lawyer shall not support the application for admission to the bar

of any person known by him to be unqualified in respect to character,

education, or other relevant attribute.

Rule 7.03 - A lawyer shall not engage in conduct that adversely reflects on

his fitness to practice law, nor shall he whether in public or private life,

behave in a scandalous manner to the discredit of the legal profession.

CANON 8 - A LAWYER SHALL CONDUCT HIMSELF WITH COURTESY,

FAIRNESS AND CANDOR TOWARDS HIS PROFESSIONAL

COLLEAGUES, AND SHALL AVOID HARASSING TACTICS AGAINST

OPPOSING COUNSEL.

Rule 8.01 - A lawyer shall not, in his professional dealings, use language which is abusive, offensive or otherwise improper.

Rule 8.02 - A lawyer shall not, directly or indirectly, encroach upon the

professional employment of another lawyer, however, it is the right of any

lawyer, without fear or favor, to give proper advice and assistance to those

seeking relief against unfaithful or neglectful counsel.

Rule 9.01 - A lawyer shall not delegate to any unqualified person the performance of any task which by law may only be performed by a member of the bar in good standing.

Rule 9.02 - A lawyer shall not divide or stipulate to divide a fee for legal

services with persons not licensed to practice law, except:

(a) Where there is a pre-existing agreement with a partner or associate that,

upon the latter's death, money shall be paid over a reasonable period of time to his estate or to persons specified in the agreement; or

(b) Where a lawyer undertakes to complete unfinished legal business of a

deceased lawyer; or

(c) Where a lawyer or law firm includes non-lawyer employees in a retirement

plan even if the plan is based in whole or in part, on a profit sharing

agreement.

CHAPTER III. THE LAWYER AND THE COURTS

CANON 10 - A LAWYER OWES CANDOR, FAIRNESS AND GOOD FAITH

TO THE COURT.

Rule 10.01 - A lawyer shall not do any falsehood, nor consent to the doing of any in Court; nor shall he mislead, or allow the Court to be misled by any artifice.

Rule 10.02 - A lawyer shall not knowingly misquote or misrepresent the

contents of a paper, the language or the argument of opposing counsel, or

the text of a decision or authority, or knowingly cite as law a provision already

rendered inoperative by repeal or amendment, or assert as a fact that which

has not been proved.

Rule 10.03 - A lawyer shall observe the rules of procedure and shall not

misuse them to defeat the ends of justice.

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CANON 11 - A LAWYER SHALL OBSERVE AND MAINTAIN THE

RESPECT DUE TO THE COURTS AND TO JUDICIAL OFFICERS AND

SHOULD INSIST ON SIMILAR CONDUCT BY OTHERS.

Rule 12.06 - A lawyer shall not knowingly assist a witness to misrepresent

himself or to impersonate another.

Rule 12.07 - A lawyer shall not abuse, browbeat or harass a witness nor

needlessly inconvenience him.

Rule 12.08 - A lawyer shall avoid testifying in behalf of his client, except:

Rule 11.01 - A lawyer shall appear in court properly attired.

Rule 11.02 - A lawyer shall punctually appear at court hearings.

Rule 11.03 - A lawyer shall abstain from scandalous, offensive or menacing

language or behavior before the Courts.

Rule 11.04 - A lawyer shall not attribute to a Judge motives not supported by

the record or have no materiality to the case.

Rule 11.05 - A lawyer shall submit grievances against a Judge to the proper

authorities only.

CANON 12 - A LAWYER SHALL EXERT EVERY EFFORT AND CONSIDER

IT HIS DUTY TO ASSIST IN THE SPEEDY AND EFFICIENT

ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE.

Rule 12.01 - A lawyer shall not appear for trial unless he has adequately prepared himself on the law and the facts of his case, the evidence he will adduce and the order of its proferrence. He should also be ready with the original documents for comparison with the copies.

Rule 12.02 - A lawyer shall not file multiple actions arising from the same

cause.

Rule 12.03 - A lawyer shall not, after obtaining extensions of time to file

pleadings, memoranda or briefs, let the period lapse without submitting the

same or offering an explanation for his failure to do so.

Rule 12.04 - A lawyer shall not unduly delay a case, impede the execution of

a judgment or misuse Court processes.

Rule 12.05 - A lawyer shall refrain from talking to his witness during a break

or recess in the trial, while the witness is still under examination.

(a) on formal matters, such as the mailing, authentication or custody of an

instrument, and the like; or

(b) on substantial matters, in cases where his testimony is essential to the

ends of justice, in which event he must, during his testimony, entrust the trial

of the case to another counsel.

CANON 13 - A LAWYER SHALL RELY UPON THE MERITS OF HIS

CAUSE AND REFRAIN FROM ANY IMPROPRIETY WHICH TENDS TO

INFLUENCE, OR GIVES THE APPEARANCE OF INFLUENCING THE

COURT.

Rule 13.01 - A lawyer shall not extend extraordinary attention or hospitality to, nor seek opportunity for cultivating familiarity with Judges.

Rule 13.02 - A lawyer shall not make public statements in the media

regarding a pending case tending to arouse public opinion for or against a

party.

Rule 13.03 - A lawyer shall not brook or invite interference by another branch

or agency of the government in the normal course of judicial proceedings.

1-4 - CEBALLOS 5-8 - MALECDAN 9-12 - MIGALLON 13-16 - OASAN 17-20 - RUEDAS 21-24 - URETA 25-29 - MANALILI

ETHICS 3/23 CANON 7-13 automatically lost her Filipino citizenship when she married an American, and was thus prohibited to own land in the Philippines, thereby making her guilty of falsification in the Deed she executed to buy property in Negros Oriental. But when, Marisa cited Article IV, Section 4 of the 1987 Constitution, which provides that she would not lose her citizenship when she married an American unless she renounced it in a specific act, Attorney Enriquez, quoted a more outdated law, declaring that her act of marrying her husband was equivalent to renouncing her citizenship. He also doggedly attempts to show that the 1987 Constitution supports his position, not Marisas.

1.
1.

Williams v. Entiquez 2006

(So basically Fernandez tried to bend outdated laws to his

advantage)

. They further pointed out that the respondent is a retired

judge, who knows that the false charge (that Marisa Williams is an American) will not prevail in the end.

Williams Vs Enriquez A.C. No. 6353 February 27, 2006

 

Issue

Petitioner:

SPOUSES DAVID and MARISA WILLIAMS,

WON Atty. Fernandez should be sanctioned for his actions?

Defendant:

ATTY. RUDY T. ENRIQUEZ

Law:

Canon 5

Ruling

Fast Topic:

Utang ng loob please read new laws mga

Yes - The Court agrees that respondent is administratively

attorney pag merong lumabas

liable for his actuations. As found by the Investigating Commissioner:

Facts:

There is no evidence shown by respondent that complainant Marisa

Respondent Atty. Rudy Fernandez - is the counsel of record

Bacatan-Williams has renounced her Filipino citizenship except her

of the plaintiffs in a civil case pending before the Regional Trial Court, Branch 33, Dumaguete City where complainants are the defendants. He then charged her with falsification of public documents before the Office of the City Prosecutor of Dumaguete City.

Certificate of Marriage, which does not show that she has automatically acquired her husbands citizenship upon her marriage to him. The cases cited by respondent are not applicable in this case as it is clear that they refer to aliens acquiring lands in the Philippines.

Petitioners Sps. Williams – alleges that in malicious violation

of the rules governing the practice of law, Attorney Rudy T. Enriquez cited outdated material in his complaint-affidavit and in his comments to counter-affidavit (Annex A-2). He then knowingly applied this stale

The Bar has been integrated for the attainment of the following objectives: (a) elevate the standards of the legal profession, (b) improve the administration of justice, and (c) to enable the bar to

law in a perverse fashion to argue that Marisa Batacan Williams

discharge its public responsibility more effectively (In re: Integration of

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the Bar of the Philippines, 49 SCRA 22). In line with these objectives of the Integrated Bar, lawyers must keep themselves abreast of legal developments. To do this, the lawyer must walk with the dynamic movements of the law and jurisprudence. He must acquaint himself at least with the newly promulgated laws, the recent decisions of the Supreme Court and of the significant decisions of the Court of Appeals. There are other executive orders, administrative circulars, regulations and other rules promulgated by other competent authorities engaged in the administration of justice. The lawyers life is one of continuous and laborious study, otherwise, his skill and knowledge of the law and related disciplines will lag behind and become obscure due to obsoleteness (Canon 5, Code of Professional Responsibility.)

• However, the SC found too harsh the recommended penalty of

the Investigating Commissioner. It must be stressed that the power to disbar or suspend must be exercised with great caution. Only in a clear case of misconduct that seriously affects the standing and

character of a lawyer as an officer of the Court and member of the bar will disbarment or suspension be imposed as a penalty.

• Atty. Rudy T. Enriquez was REPRIMANDED and ADVISED to

carefully study the opinions he may give to his clients. He is STERNLY WARNED that a repetition of a similar act shall be dealt with more severely.

2.
2.

Dinsay v. Cioco 1996

As pointed out by the Investigating Commissioner, Canon 5 of

the Code of Professional Responsibility requires that a lawyer be

Dinsay Vs. Cioco

Petitioner:

Defendant:

A.C. No. 2995

November 27, 1996

ROMULO G. DINSAY

Facts

Traders Royal Bank (the Bank) certain properties as security for the

Planters Machinery Corporation (PLAMACO) - mortgaged to

Sheriff then executed a Certificate of Sheriffs Sale on the same day.

Atty. Leopoldo D. Cioco - then Clerk of Court and Ex-Officio

updated in the latest laws and jurisprudence. Indeed, when the law is so elementary, not to know it or to act as if one does not know it

constitutes gross ignorance of the law. As a retired judge, respondent should have known that it is his duty to keep himself well-informed of the latest rulings of the Court on the issues and legal problems confronting a client. In this case, the law he apparently misconstrued

ATTY. LEOPOLDO D. CIOCO

Fast Topic: • A public officer lawyer can be charged as an officer of the court and as a lawyer if the violation concerns his moral fitness to be a lawyer.

is no less than the Constitution, the most basic law of the land. Implicit in a lawyers mandate to protect a clients interest to the best of his/her

ability and with utmost diligence is the duty to keep abreast of the law

and legal developments, and participate in continuing legal education programs. Thus, in championing the interest of clients and defending cases, a lawyer must not only be guided by the strict standards imposed by the lawyers oath, but should likewise espouse legally

payment of its loan. The mortgage was foreclosed because PLAMACO failed to pay. The mortgaged properties were then sold to the bank , the sole bidder, at a foreclosure sale.

sound arguments for clients, lest the latters cause be dismissed on a

technical ground. Ignorance encompasses both substantive and procedural laws.

Records disclose that Page Four (4) of the said Certificate was surreptitiously substituted. The new page lowered the bid price from

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the original amount of P3,263,182.67 to only P730,000.00. Consequent to such anomaly, respondent and Deputy Sheriff Renato M. Belleza, were administratively charged. In the first Dinsay case, a

Issue

same misconduct, it does not amount to double jeopardy as both proceedings are admittedly administrative in nature.

per curiam resolution promulgated on December 12, 1986, we

3.) Yes - In this case, we agree with the findings of the Office

decreed their dismissal for grave misconduct highly prejudicial to the

of the Bar Confidant (OBC) that the participation of the respondent in

service. He is now sought to be disbarred on the basis of the aforementioned incident that triggered his untimely dismissal.

the changing of the bid price in the Certificate of Sheriffs Sale affects his fitness as a member of the bar. As a lawyer, respondent knows that it is patently illegal to change the content of the said certificate after its notarization, it being already a public document.

WON Atty. Cioco can be charged for an offense he committed

Atty Cioco was suspended for 1 year.

as a public officer?

• WON he can still be tried administratively as a lawyer for an

act he has already been tried administratively as an officer of court?

3.
3.

Santiago v. Sagucio 2006

WON Atty Cioco should be sanctioned?

Ruling

Santiago vs.Sagucio

A.C. No. 6705 March 31, 2006

1.) He can charged - As a general rule, a lawyer who holds a

government office may not be disciplined as a member of the bar for

Petitioner:

RUTHIE LIM-SANTIAGO

misconduct in the discharge of his duties as a government official.

Defendant:

ATTY. CARLOS B. SAGUCIO

However, if that misconduct as a government official is of such a character as to affect his qualification as a lawyer or to show moral

Law:

delinquency, then he may be disciplined as a member of the bar on

Rule 15.03. - A lawyer shall not represent conflicting interests

such ground.

except by written consent of all concerned given after a full disclosure of the facts.

2.) Yes – The doctrine of res adjudicata applies only to judicial

Rule 1.01 - A lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest,

Fast Topic:

or quasi-judicial proceedings and not to the exercise of the Court’s administrative powers. Neither can it be successfully argued that the instant disbarment case has been already adjudicated in the first

immoral or deceitful conduct.

Dinsay case. Therein, respondent was administratively proceeded

Conflict of interest must be substantiated by evidence.

against as an erring court personnel under the supervisory authority of

Private practice of law by a public lawyer violates rule 1.01

the Court. Herein, respondent is sought to be disciplined as a lawyer under the Courts plenary authority over members of the legal profession. While respondent is in effect being indicted twice for the

Facts

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Petitioner Ruthie Lim-Santiago - is the daughter of Alfonso

Issue

Lim, a stockholder and the former President of Taggat Industries, Inc,

WON Atty. Sagucio violated Rule 15.03

and Special Administratrix of his estate.

WON Atty Sagucio can be held liable for private practice of

Respondent Atty. Carlos B. Sagucio - was the former

law?

Personnel Manager and Retained Counsel of Taggat Industries, Inc. until his appointment as Assistant Provincial Prosecutor of

their salaries and wages without valid cause. He resolved the criminal

Ruling

Tuguegarao, Cagayan in 1992. As Assistant Provincial Prosecutor,

1. ) No violation of 15.03 - The prohibition to represent

conducted a preliminary investigation on a case filed by 21 Taggat employees against the petitioner who took over the management and control of Taggat after the death of her father, withheld payment of

complaint by recommending the filing of 651 Informations for violations of the Labor Code.

conflicting interests does not apply when no conflict of interest exists, when a written consent of all concerned is given after a full disclosure of the facts or when no true attorney-client relationship exists. Moreover, considering the serious consequence of the disbarment or suspension of a member of the Bar, clear preponderant evidence is necessary to justify the imposition of the administrative penalty.

Petitioner Santiago - Complainant contends that respondent

is guilty of representing conflicting interests, violating rule 15.03 of the CPR. Respondent, being the former Personnel Manager and Retained Counsel of Taggat, knew the operations of Taggat very well. Respondent should have inhibited himself from hearing, investigating and deciding the case filed by Taggat employees. Furthermore, complainant claims that respondent instigated the filing of the cases and even harassed and threatened Taggat employees to accede and sign an affidavit to support the complaint. Complainant also contends

1996.

Complainant’s evidence failed to substantiate the claim that respondent represented conflicting interest.

In the present case, we find no conflict of interests when respondent handled the preliminary investigation of the criminal complaint filed by Taggat employees in 1997. The issue in the criminal complaint pertains to non-payment of wages that occurred from 1 April 1996 to 15 July 1997. Clearly, respondent was no longer connected with Taggat during that period since he resigned sometime in 1992.

that respondent is guilty of engaging in the private practice of law while working as a government prosecutor. Complainant presented evidence to prove that respondent received P10,000 as retainer’s fee for the months of January and February 1995, another P10,000 for the months of April and May 1995, and P5,000 for the month of April

In order to charge respondent for representing conflicting interests, evidence must be presented to prove that respondent used against Taggat, his former client, any confidential information acquired through his previous employment. The only established participation respondent had with respect to the criminal complaint is that he was

Respondent Sagucio- claims that when the criminal

the one who conducted the preliminary investigation.

complaint was filed, respondent had resigned from Taggat for more than five yeas and he also asserts that he no longer owed his undivided loyalty to Taggat.

2.) Yes - "Private practice of law" contemplates a succession

of acts of the same nature habitually or customarily holding one’s self to the public as a lawyer. Respondent argues that he only rendered

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consultancy services to Taggat intermittently and he was not a retained counsel of Taggat from 1995 to 1996 as alleged. This argument is without merit because the law does not distinguish between consultancy services and retainer agreement. For as long as respondent performed acts that are usually rendered by lawyers with

the use of their legal knowledge, the same falls within the ambit of the term "practice of law." Nonetheless, respondent admitted that he rendered his legal services to complainant while working as a government prosecutor. Even the receipts he signed stated that the payments by Taggat were for "Retainer’s fee." Thus, as correctly pointed out by complainant, respondent clearly violated the prohibition in RA 6713. Here, respondent’s violation of RA 6713 also constitutes a violation of Rule 1.01 of Canon 1, which mandates that "[a] lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest, immoral or deceitful conduct." Respondent’s admission that he received from Taggat fees for legal services while serving as a government prosecutor is an unlawful conduct, which constitutes a violation of Rule 1.01.

Atty Sagucio was suspended for 6 months

4.
4.

Huysen v. Gutierrez 2006

Huyssen Vs. Gutierrez

A.C. No. 6707

March 24, 2006

BID they needed to deposit a certain sum of money for a period of one year which could be withdrawn after one year.

• Petitioner Huyssen - Believing that the deposit was indeed

required by law, complainant deposited with respondent on six

different occasions from April 1995 to April 1996 the total amount of US$20,000 to which respondent prepared receipts/vouchers as proofs that he received the amounts deposited by the complainant but refused to give her copies of official receipts despite her demands. After one year, she demanded from respondent the return of US$20,000 who assured her that said amount would be returned. When respondent failed to return the sum deposited, the World Mission for Jesus (of which complainant was a member) sent a demand letter to respondent for the immediate return of the money to which respondent promised to return but again failed to do. The WMJ then again sent another demand letter.

• Defendant Gutierrez - respondent sent the complainant a letter

dated 19 March 1999 explaining the alleged reasons for the delay in the release of deposited amount and enclosed two blank checks postdated to 6 April and 20 April 1999 and authorized complainant to fill in the amounts however the same were dishonored because respondent had stopped payment on the same. He then replaced it with five postdated checks that also got dishonored.

 

Issue

Petitioner:

GISELA HUYSSEN

WON he should be sanctioned?

Defendant: •

ATTY. FRED L. GUTIERREZ

 

Ruling

Facts

1. Yes - We agree with the IBP Board of Governors that

Petitioner Gisela Huyssen - and her three sons, who are all

respondent should be severely sanctioned. We begin with the

American citizens, applied for Philippine Visas under Section 13[g] of the Immigration Law.

• Respondent Atty. Fred L. Gutierrez - told complainant that in

order that their visa applications will be favorably acted upon by the

veritable fact that lawyers in government service in the discharge of their official task have more restrictions than lawyers in private practice. Want of moral integrity is to be more severely condemned in a lawyer who holds a responsible public office. It is undisputed that

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respondent admitted having received the US$20,000 from complainant as shown by his signatures in the petty cash vouchers and receipts he prepared, on the false representation that that it was needed in complainant’s application for visa with the BID.

Respondent denied he misappropriated the said amount and interposed the defense that he delivered it to a certain Atty. Mendoza who assisted complainant and children in their application for visa in the BID. Such defense remains unsubstantiated as he failed to submit evidence on the matter. While he claims that Atty. Mendoza already died, he did not present the death certificate of said Atty. Mendoza. Worse, the action of respondent in shifting the blame to someone who has been naturally silenced by fate, is not only impudent but downright ignominious.

gifts or anything of monetary value in any transaction requiring the approval of his office or which may be affected by the functions of his office.

Respondent’s conduct in office betrays the integrity and good moral character required from all lawyers, especially from one occupying a high public office. A lawyer in public office is expected not only to refrain from any act or omission which might tend to lessen the trust and confidence of the citizenry in government; he must also uphold the dignity of the legal profession at all times and observe a high standard of honesty and fair dealing. Otherwise said, a lawyer in government service is a keeper of the public faith and is burdened with high degree of social responsibility, perhaps higher than his brethren in private practice.

When the integrity of a member of the bar is challenged, it is not enough that he deny the charges against him; he must meet the issue and overcome the evidence against him. He must show proof that he still maintains that degree of morality and integrity which at all times is expected of him. In the case at bar, respondent clearly fell short of his duty. Records show that even though he was given the opportunity to answer the charges and controvert the evidence against him in a formal investigation, he failed, without any plausible reason, to appear several times whenever the case was set for reception of his evidence despite due notice.

Respondent’s act of asking money from complainant in consideration of the latter’s pending application for visas is violative of Rule 1.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibility, which prohibits members of the Bar from engaging or participating in any unlawful, dishonest, or deceitful acts. Moreover, said acts constitute a breach of Rule 6.02 of the Code which bars lawyers in government service from promoting their private interest. Promotion of private interest includes soliciting

In a desperate attempt to put up a smoke or to camouflage his misdeed, he went on committing another by issuing several worthless checks, thereby compounding his case.

In a recent case, we have held that the issuance of worthless checks constitutes gross misconduct,20 as the effect "transcends the private interests of the parties directly involved in the transaction and touches the interests of the community at large. The mischief it creates is not only a wrong to the payee or holder, but also an injury to the public since the circulation of valueless commercial papers can very well pollute the channels of trade and commerce, injure the banking system and eventually hurt the welfare of society and the public interest. Thus, paraphrasing Black’s definition, a drawer who issues an unfunded check deliberately reneges on his private duties he owes his fellow men or society in a manner contrary to accepted and customary rule of right and duty, justice, honesty or good morals.

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Consequently, we have held that the act of a person in issuing a check knowing at the time of the issuance that he or she does not have sufficient funds in, or credit with, the drawee bank for the payment of the check in full upon its presentment, is also a manifestation of moral turpitude.

Respondent’s acts are more despicable. Not only did he misappropriate the money of complainant; worse, he had the gall to prepare receipts with the letterhead of the BID and issued checks to cover up his misdeeds. Clearly, he does not deserve to continue, being a member of the bar.

ATTY. FRED IS DISBARRED

5.
5.

PCGG v. Sandiganbayan 2005

FACTS In 1976 the General Bank and Trust Company (GENBANK) encountered financial difficulties. GENBANK had extended considerable financial support to Filcapital Development Corporation causing it to incur daily overdrawings on its current account with Central Bank. Despite the mega loans GENBANK failed to recover from its financial woes. The Central Bank issued a resolution declaring GENBANK insolvent and unable to resume business with safety to its depositors, creditors and the general public, and ordering its liquidation. A public bidding of GENBANK’s assets was held where Lucio Tan group submitted the winning bid. Solicitor General Estelito Mendoza filed a petition with the CFI praying for the assistance and supervision of the court in GENBANK’s liquidation as mandated by RA 265.

After EDSA Revolution I Pres Aquino established the PCGG to recover the alleged ill-gotten wealth of former Pres Marcos, his family

and cronies. Pursuant to this mandate, the PCGG filed with the Sandiganbayan a complaint for reversion, reconveyance, restitution against respondents Lucio Tan, at.al. PCGG issued several writs of sequestration on properties allegedly acquired by them by taking advantage of their close relationship and influence with former Pres. Marcos. The abovementioned respondents Tan, et. al are represented as their counsel, former Solicitor General Mendoza. PCGG filed motions to disqualify respondent Mendoza as counsel for respondents Tan et. al. with Sandiganbayan. It was alleged that Mendoza as then Sol Gen and counsel to Central Bank actively intervened in the liquidation of GENBANK which was subsequently acquired by respondents Tan et. al., which subsequently became Allied Banking Corporation. The motions to disqualify invoked Rule 6.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility which prohibits former government lawyers from accepting “engagement” or employment in connection with any matter in which he had intervened while in the said service. The Sandiganbayan issued a resolution denyting PCGG’s motion to disqualify respondent Mendoza. It failed to prove the existence of an inconsistency between respondent Mendoza’s former function as SolGen and his present employment as counsel of the Lucio Tan group. PCGGs recourse to this court assailing the Resolutions of the Sandiganbayan.

ISSUE Whether Rule 6.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility applies to respondent Mendoza

HELD:

The case at bar does not involve the “adverse interest” aspect of Rule 6.03. Respondent Mendoza, it is conceded, has no adverse interest problem when he acted as SOlGen and later as counsel of respondents et.al. before the Sandiganbayan. However there is still the issue of whether there exists a “congruent-interest conflict”

ETHICS 3/23 CANON 7-13 assistance in the liquidation of GENBANK. The role of court is not strictly as a court of justice but as an agent to assist the Central Bank in determining the claims of creditors. In such a proceeding the role of the SolGen is not that of the usual court litigator protecting the interest of government. Petition assailing the Resolution of the Sandiganbayan is denied.

6.
6.

Samala v. Palana 2005

FACTS:

Sometime in February 2001, complainant was looking for a company where he could invest his dollar savings. He met Raymond Taino, a trader-employee of First Imperial Resources, Inc. (FIRI), a company located at Legaspi Village, Makati City. Taino introduced him to FIRI Manager Jun Agustin, Chief Trader Diosdado Bernal, and Legal Officer Antonuitti K. Palaa, the respondent herein. Complainant expressed his concern to the said three officers of FIRI about having been warned of numerous fraudulent businesses in the Philippines. Respondent assured him that through FIRI he would be directly putting his investment with Eastern Vanguard Forex Limited, a reputable company based in the Virgin Islands which has been in the foreign exchange business for 13 years. The three officers presented to him their company profile and documents purporting to establish their relationship with Eastern Vanguard Forex Limited.

Due to the personal representations and assurances of respondent, Agustin, and Bernal, complainant was convinced and he invested his dollar savings with FIRI on March 9, 2001. Subsequently, complainant decided to pull out his investment. On April 5, 2001, he sent FIRI a letter requesting the withdrawal of his investment amounting to US$10,000 and giving FIRI 10 days to prepare the money. On April 15, 2001, complainant asked Agustin when his money would be

returned. Agustin told him that the request was sent to Thomas Yiu of

sufficient to disqualify respondent Mendoza from representing respondents et. al. The key is unlocking the meaning of “matter” and the metes and bounds of “intervention” that he made on the matter. Beyond doubt that the “matter” or the act of respondent Mendoza as SolGen involved in the case at bar is “advising the Central Bank, on how to proceed with the said bank’s liquidation and even filing the

petition for its liquidation in CFI of Manila. The Court held that the advice given by respondent Mendoza on the procedure to liquidate GENBANK is not the “matter” contemplated by Rule 6.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility.

ABA Formal Opinion No. 342 is clear in stressing that “drafting, enforcing or interpreting government or agency procedures, regulations and laws, or briefing abstract principles of law are acts which do not fall within the scope of the term “matter” and cannot disqualify. Respondent Mendoza had nothing to do with the decision of the Central Bank to liquidate GENBANK. He also did not participate in the sale of GENBANK to Allied Bank. The legality of the liquidation of GENBANK is not an issue in the sequestration cases. Indeed, the jurisdiction of the PCGG does not include the dissolution and liquidation of banks. Thus, the Code 6.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility cannot apply to respondent Mendoza because his alleged intervention while SolGen is an intervention on a matter different from the matter involved in the Civil case of sequestration. In the metes and bounds of the “intervention”. The applicable meaning as the term is used in the Code of Professional Ethics is that it is an act of a person who has the power to influence the subject proceedings. The evil sought to be remedied by the Code do not exist where the government lawyer does not act which can be considered as innocuous such as “ drafting, enforcing, or interpreting government or agency procedures, regulations or laws or briefing abstract principles of law.” The court rules that the intervention of Mendoza is not significant and substantial. He merely petitions that the court gives

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Eastern Vanguard at Ortigas Center. Complainant went to see Thomas Yiu at his office. Yiu was surprised when he saw the documents involving complainants’ investment. Yiu phoned Agustin and demanded an explanation as to where the money was. Agustin said that he would return complainants investment at FIRIs office in Makati. On the same day, in the presence of respondent, Agustin delivered to complainant a check in the amount of P574,045.09, as the peso equivalent of complainants investment with FIRI. On May 2, 2001, the said check was dishonored because it was drawn against insufficient funds.

address existed and that no resident named Paul Desiderio lived in the subdivision. Complainant alleged that respondents act of representing himself to be the legal officer of FIRI and his assurance that the check he personally delivered to him was signed in his presence by FIRI Officer Paul Desiderio, when no such person appears to exist, is clearly fraudulent and violative of the Canons of Professional Ethics.

ISSUE:

WON Respondent violated Canon 7, Rule 7.03 of COPR

Complainant informed respondent of the dishonor of the check. Respondent assured him that the check would be replaced. On June 1, 2001, respondent, as legal officer of FIRI, gave complainant P250,000 in cash and a check in the amount of P329,045.09. Respondent told complainant that the check was signed by FIRI President Paul Desiderio in his (respondents) presence and assured complainant that the check would be funded. But on June 28, 2001, the check was dishonored because it was drawn against insufficient funds. On July 14, 2001, complainant charged Paul Desiderio of Estafa and Violation of Batas Pambansa Bilang 22 at the Prosecutors Office of Makati. On November 4, 2001, Judge Evelyn Arcaya-Chua of the Metropolitan Trial Court, Makati City, issued a warrant of arrest against Paul Desiderio.

On March 5, 2002, complainant joined three police officers in serving the warrant of arrest against Paul Desiderio at No. 10 Damascus St., Northeast Executive Village, B.F. Homes, Paraaque City. Complainant got the said address of Paul Desiderio from the documents of FIRI. Although there was a street named Damascus in the said village, there was no residence numbered 10. The police officers checked the existence of the said address and resident at the office of the subdivision association. They were told that no such

HELD:

YES. In this case, respondent assured complainant that by investing his dollar savings with FIRI, his investment was in a stable company, even if, as it was later discovered, the by-laws of FIRI prohibited it from engaging in investment or foreign exchange business and its primary purpose is to act as consultant in providing professional expertise and reliable data analysis related to partnership and so on. When complainant decided to withdraw his investment from FIRI, the first check given to him in the amount of his total investment bounced. Thereafter, respondent, as legal officer of FIRI, gave complainant P250,000 in cash and a check for P329,045.09. Respondent assured complainant that the second check was a good check and that it was signed by Paul Desiderio, the alleged president of FIRI. However, the said check bounced because it was drawn against insufficient funds, and the drawer of the check, Paul Desiderio, could not be located when sought to be served a warrant of arrest since his identity was unknown and his residential address was found to be non-existent.

Hence, it is clear that the representations of respondent as legal officer of FIRI caused material damage to complainant. In so doing, respondent failed to uphold the integrity and dignity of the legal

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CANON 7-13

profession and lessened the confidence of the public in the honesty and integrity of the same. Suspended for 3 years.

​7.
​7.

Leda v. Tabang 1992

FACTS:

Respondent, Atty. Trebonian Tabang, and complainant, Evangeline Leda, contracted marriage at Tigbauan, Iloilo. It was solemnized by Judge Jose Tavarro. The parties agreed to keep the marriage until after respondent had finished his law studies and had taken the bar examinations. Respondent in his application declared that he was single. He passed the exam. But complainant blocked him from taking his oath claiming that he acted fraudulently in filling out his application. Moreover, she alleged that after respondent’s law studies, he became aloof and abandoned her.

ISSUE:

WON Tabang Violated Canon 7 of the COPR

of the appeal to AMA President Aguiluz gave rise to Civil Case 97-30549. CAMACHO was the hired counsel of the expelled students in an action for the Issuance of a Writ of Preliminary Mandatory Injuction in the said civil case. While the civil case was still pending, letters of apology and Re-admission Agreements were separately executed by the expelled students without the knowledge of CAMACHO

CAMACHO filed a complaint against lawyers comprising the PANGULAYAN AND ASSOCIATES Law Firm (lawyers of AMA) because without his knowledge they procured and effected on separate occasions compromise agreements (letters of apology and Re-admission Agreements) with 4 of his clients which in effect required them to waive all kinds of claims they may have with AMA. CAMACHO averred that such an act was unbecoming of any member of the legal profession warranting either disbarment or suspension. PANGULAYAN in his defense claimed that the agreements were executed for the sole purpose of effecting the settlement of an administrative case

HELD:

His declaration that he was single in his application was a gross misrepresentation of a material fact made in utter bad faith. It is a violation of Rule 7.01, Canon 7.0. 2.As good character is an essential qualification for admission of an attorney to practice, when the attorney’s character is bad in such respects as to show that he is unsafe and unfit to be entrusted with the powers of an attorney, the courtretain power to discipline him.

ISSUE

W/N

PANGULAYAN

AND

ASSOCIATES

SHOULD

BE

SUSPENDED/DISBARRED

 

HELD YES It would appear that when individual letters of apology and Re-admission Agreements were formalized, CAMACHO was already

 

the retained counsel of the expelled AMA students. PANGULAYAN

8.
8.

Camacho v. Panguluyan 2000

 

and associates having full knowledge of this fact still proceeded to negotiate with the expelled AMA students and their parents without at least communicating the matter to their lawyer CAMACHO. This failure of PANGULAYAN and associates, whether by design or

oversight, is an excusable violation of the canons of profession ethics

FACTS:

9 students of AMA were expelled for having apparently caused to be published objectionable features or articles in the school paper. Denial

ETHICS 3/23 CANON 7-13 and in utter disregard of a duty owing to a colleague. The excuse that agreements were executed for settling the administrative case was belied by the Manifestation which states “9 signatories agreed among others to terminate ALL civil, criminal and administrative proceedings they may have against AMA arising from their previous dismissal”

Hence, PANGULAYAN should be suspended for 3 months. A lawyers should not in any way communicate upon the subject of controversy with a party represented by counsel, much less should he undertake to negotiate or compromise the matter with him but should only deal with his counsel. It is incumbent upon the lawyer most particularly to avoid everything that may tend to mislead a party not represented by counsel and he should not undertake to advise him as to law.

9. 10. 11. 12.
9.
10.
11.
12.

Castillo v. Padilla 1984

 

Noble v. Ailes 2015

 

Andres v. Cabrera 1979

 

Tolentino v. Baylosis 1961

ETHICS 3/23

CANON 7-13

13.
13.

In Re Laureta 1987

FACTS: Before us are 1) Atty. Wenceslao Laureta's Motion for Reconsideration of the Per Curiam Resolution of this Court promulgated on March 12, 1987, finding him guilty of grave professional misconduct and suspending him indefinitely from the practice of law; and 2) Eva Maravilla-Ilustre's Motion for Reconsideration of the same Resolution holding her in contempt and ordering her to pay a fine of P1,000.00.

Maravilla Illustre wrote to the justices of the SC, complaining about the dismissal of the her case regarding a land dispute involving large estate by a minute-resolution. Illustre claimed that it was an unjust resolution deliberately and knowingly promulgated by the 1st Division, that it was railroaded with such hurry beyond the limits of legal and judicial ethics.

Illustre also threatened in her letter that, “there is nothing final in this world. This case is far from finished by a long shot.” and threatened that she would call for a press conference. Illustre’s letter attacked the participation of Justice Pedro Yap in the first division. It was established that Justice Yap was previously a law partner of Atty. Ordonez, now the Solgen and counsel for the opponents. The letters were referred to the SC en banc. The SC clarified that when the minute-resolution was issued, the presiding justice then was not Justice Yap but Justice Abad Santos (who was about to retire), and that Justice Yap was not aware that Atty Ordonez was the opponents counsel. It was also made clear that Justice Yap eventually inhibited himself from the case. Still, Illustre wrote letters to the other justices (Narvasa, Herrera, Cruz), again with more threats to “expose the kind of judicial performance readily constituting travesty of justice.”

Illustre later filed a criminal complaint before the Tanodbayan, charging the Justices with knowingly rendering an unjust Minute Resolution. Justice Yap and Solgen Ordonez were also charged of using their influence in the First Division in rendering said Minute Resolution. Atty Laureta was the counsel of Illustre. He circulates copies of the complaint to the press, without any copy furnished the Court, nor the Justices charged. It was made to appear that the Justices were charged with graft and corruption. The Tanodbayan dismissed the complaint. Now, the SC is charging them with contempt. They claim that the letters were private communication, and that they did not intend to dishonor the court.

ISSUE:WON they are guilty of contempt

HELD: Eva Maravilla Ilustre is hereby held in contempt and Atty. Wenceslao Laureta is found guilty of grave professional misconduct and is suspended from the practice of law until further Orders.

Resolutions of the Supreme Court as a collegiate court, whether en banc or division, speak for themselves and are entitled to full faith and credence and are beyond investigation or inquiry under the same principle of conclusiveness of enrolled bills of the legislature. The supremacy of the Supreme Court’s judicial power is a restatement of the fundamental principle of separation of powers and checks and balances under a republican form of government such that the three co-equal branches of government are each supreme and independent within the limits of its own sphere. Neither one can interfere with the performance of the duties of the other.

ACCORDINGLY, respondent Eva Maravilla Ilustre is hereby held in contempt, and is hereby fined in the amount of P1,000.00 only,

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CANON 7-13

mindful that the power of contempt should be exercised on the preservative and not on the vindictive principle of punishment; and Atty. Wenceslao Laureta is found guilty of grave professional misconduct, rendering him unfit to continue to be entrusted with the duties and responsibilities belonging to the office of an attorney, and is hereby suspended from the practice of law until further Orders, the suspension to take effect immediately.

Paralegal

BACK

SERVICES OFFERED:

CONSULTATION AND ASSISTANCE TO OVERSEAS SEAMEN REPATRIATED DUE TO ACCIDENT, INJURY, ILLNESS, SICKNESS, DEATH AND INSURANCE BENEFIT CLAIMS ABROAD.

14.
14.

Linsangan v. Tolentino 2009

FACTS: This is a complaint for disbarment filed by Pedro Linsangan of the Linsangan Linsangan & Linsangan Law Office against Atty. Nicomedes Tolentino for solicitation of clients and encroachment of professional services. Complainant alleged that respondent, with the help of paralegal Fe Marie Labiano, convinced his clients to transfer legal representation. Respondent promised them financial assistance and expeditious collection on their claims. To induce them to hire his services, he persistently called them and sent them text messages.

To support his allegations, complainant presented the sworn affidavit of James Gregorio attesting that Labiano tried to prevail upon him to sever his lawyer-client relations with complainant and utilize respondent’s services instead, in exchange for a loan of 50,000. Complainant also attached "respondent’s" calling card:

FRONT

NICOMEDES TOLENTINO LAW OFFICE CONSULTANCY & MARITIME SERVICES W/ FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE Fe Marie L. Labiano

In his defense, Atty. Tolentino denied knowing Labiano. He also denied authorizing the printing of such calling cards.

ISSUE: Whether or not Atty. Nicomedes Tolentino encroached upon the professional services of Atty. Pedro Linsangan.

HELD: Yes.

Responsibility. A lawyer shall not, directly, or

indirectly enroach upon the professional employment of another

lawyer [

the latter to retain him by a promise of better service, good result or

reduced fees for his services. By recruiting Atty. Linsangan’s

Atty. Tolentino committed an unethical, predatory overstep into another’s legal practice. He cannot escape liability under Rule 8.02 of the CPR.

of

Atty.

Tolentino

violated

Rule

8.02

of

the

Code

Professional

]

A lawyer should not steal another lawyer’s client nor induce

clients,

WHEREFORE, respondent Atty. Nicomedes Tolentino for violating

Rules 1.03,

Professional Responsibility and Section 27, Rule 138 of the Rules of Court is hereby SUSPENDED from the practice of law for a period of one year effective immediately from receipt of this resolution. He is STERNLY WARNED that a repetition of the same or similar acts in the future shall be dealt with more severely.

the Code of

2.03,

8.02 and 16.04 and Canon 3 of

15.
15.

Cambaliza v. Cristal-Tenorio 2004

FACTS:

ETHICS 3/23 CANON 7-13 makes it a misbehavior on his part subject to disciplinary action, to aid a layman in the unauthorized practice of law.

2. YES. A case of suspension or disbarment may proceed

Complainant is the former employee of the respondent in her law office. The former charged the latter for malpractice or other gross misconduct in the office for cooperating in the illegal practice of law by her husband. The complainant submitted the following evidences: 1) the letterhead of Cristal-Tenorio Law Office where the name of Felicisimo Tenorio, Jr., husband of the respondent, is listed as a senior partner; and 2.) a Sagip Communication Radio’s Group identification card signed by the respondent where her husband is identified as “Atty. Felicisimo Tenorio, Jr.”. She added that respondent’s husband even appeared in court hearings. During the investigation of the IBP, complainant filed a Motion to Withdraw Complaint. Respondent now moved for the dismissal of the case for failure of the complainant to appear in the said case.

regardless of interest or lack of interest of the complainant. Disciplinary proceedings involve no private interest and afford no redress for private grievance. They are undertaken and prosecuted solely for the public welfare.

16.
16.

Republic v. Kenrick Development Corp. 2006

 

FACTS: Kenrick built a concrete fence around some parts of the land behind the Civil Aviation Training Center of the Air Transportation Office (ATO) claiming ownership over those lands. Its encroachment resulted to the dispossession of ATO of some 30,228 square meters of prime land. Kenrick justified its action by presenting TCTs issued in its name and which allegedly originated from a TCT registered in the name of Alfonso Concepcion. When ATO verified the TCTs, the Registrar of Deeds reported that it has no record of them and that their ascendant title, allegedly in the name of Concepcion, was non-existent in their office. Thus, the OSG filed a complaint for revocation, annulment and cancellation of certificates of title in behalf of the Republic against Concepcion and Kenrick. Kenrick filed an answer which was allegedly signed by its counsel Atty. Onofre Garlitos Jr. When Concepcion could not be located and be served with summons, the trial court ordered the issuance of an alias summons by publication against him. While the case was pending, the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee and Committee on Justice and Human Rights investigated Kenrick’s acquisition of fake titles. During the hearing, Atty. Garlitos was summoned and testified that he prepared Kenrick’s answer and transmitted an unsigned draft to Kenrick’s president, Victor Ong. Apparently, the signature appearing

ISSUES: 1. Whether or not respondent is guilty of assisting in the unauthorized practice of law. 2. Whether or not a Motion to Withdraw Complaint in a disbarment proceeding, the case may prosper.

HELD:

1.

YES. A lawyer who allows a non-member of the Bar to

misrepresent himself as a lawyer and to practice law is guilty of violating Canon 9 and Rule 9.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibility. Public policy requires that the practice of law be limited to those individuals found duly qualified in education and character. The purpose is to protect the public, the court, the client, and the bar from the incompetence or dishonesty of those unlicensed to practice law and not subject to the disciplinary control of the Court. It devolves upon a lawyer to see that this purpose is attained, otherwise, the law

ETHICS 3/23

CANON 7-13

above Garlitos’ name was not his, he did not authorized anyone to sign it in his behalf, and he did not know who finally signed it.

[Republic: It filed an urgent motion to declare Kenrick and Concepcion in default for failure to file a valid answer because the person who signed it was not the counsel for the respondents. Thus, the answer was effectively an unsigned pleading. Under Sec. 3, Rule 7 of the ROC, an unsigned pleading is a mere scrap of paper and produced no legal effect.

RTC:It granted the Republic’s motion. It ruled Kenrick’s answer “to be a sham and false and intended to defeat the purpose of the rules.” It also ordered that the answer be stricken from the records, declared Kenrick in default and allowed the Republic to present its evidence ex parte.

Republic:It presented its evidence ex parte, after which it rested its case and formally offered its evidence.

HELD: Pursuant to Sec. 3, Rule 7, a pleading must be “signed by the party or counsel representing him.” The law is clear, and the counsel’s duty and authority to sign a pleading is personal to him and may not be delegated to just any person. The signature of counsel constitutes an assurance by him that he has read the pleading; that, to the best of his knowledge, information and belief, there is a good ground to support it; and that it is not interposed for delay. Under the Rules of Court, it is counsel alone, by affixing his signature, who can certify to these matters.

The preparation and signing of a pleading constitute legal work involving practice of law which is reserved exclusively for the members of the legal profession. Counsel may delegate the signing of a pleading to another lawyer but cannot do so in favor of one who is not.

Kenrick:Its motion for reconsideration was denied. So, it elevated the matter to the CA via a petition for certiorari.

CA: It assailed the RTC’s decision. It granted Kenrick’s petition for certiorari and lifted the trial court’s order of default against Kenrick Then, it ordered the trial court to proceed to trial with dispatch. It ruled so because it found Atty. Garlitos’ statements in the legislative hearing to be unreliable since they were not subjected to cross-examination. It also scrutinized Atty. Garlitos’ acts after the filing of the answer and concluded that he assented to the signing of the answer by somebody in his stead.]

Republic:It moved for reconsideration but was denied, hence this petition.

ISSUE:Whether or not Kenrick failed to file a valid answer on the

ground that its pleading was unsigned by its counsel Atty. Garlitos.

The Code of Professional Responsibility provides:

Rule 9.01 ― A lawyer shall not delegate to any unqualified person the performance of any task which by law may only be performed by a member of the Bar in good standing.

As a final note, the Court cannot close its eyes to the acts committed by Atty. Garlitos in violation of the ethics of the legal profession. Thus, he should be made to account for his possible misconduct. WHEREFORE, the petition is hereby GRANTED. The May 31, 2001 decision and August 20, 2001 resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. SP No. 52948 are REVERSED and SET ASIDE and the February 19, 1999 resolution of the Regional Trial Court of Pasay City, Branch 114 declaring respondent in default is hereby REINSTATED.

ETHICS 3/23

CANON 7-13

17.
17.

Five J. v. NLRC 1994

FACTS:

Five J Taxi and/or Juan Armamento (petitioners) filed this

special civil action for certiorari to annul the decision of NLRC which ordered the petitioners to pay Maldigan and Sabsalon (private respondents - PR) their accumulated deposits and car wash payments; interests at the legal rate from date of promulgation of judgment; and 10% for attorney’s fees.

● In less than 4 months, Maldigan already failed to report for work for unknown reasons.

○ Later known that he was working for “Mine of Gold” Taxi.

● Sabsalon was held up by an armed passenger who took all his money and was stabbed.

○ Despite repeated requests to report for work, he refused.

○ Later revealed that he was working for “Bulaklak” taxi company.

● In 1989, Maldigan requested Five J for the reimbursement of his daily cash deposits for 2 years, but they replied that not a single centavo was left of his deposits as these were not

enough to cover the amount spent for the car repair for the taxi he was driving.

○ When he further insisted of his deposit, he was terminated from employment.

● Sabsalon, claimed that his termination from employment was

effected when he refused to pay for washing of his taxi seat covers.

● PR filed a complaint charging the petitioners with illegal dismissal and illegal deductions.

○ Dismissed, the labor arbiter held that it took PR 2 years to file the same. The unreasonable was not consistent

with the natural reaction of a person who claimed to be unjustly treated.

○ NLRC concurred. Affirmed that the services were not illegally terminated but modified the decision ordering the petitioners to pay PR the above mentioned awards.

■ Petitioner filed for MR but denied by NLRC.

ISSUE: Whether or not the award of Attorney’s fees is proper. HELD: NLRC judgment is modified by deleting the awards of attorney’s fees.

● On the issue of attorney’s fees or service fees for private respondents’ authorized representative, Article 222 of the Labor Code, as amended by Section 3 of Presidential Decree No. 1691, states that non-lawyers may appear before the NLRC or any labor arbiter only (1) if they represent themselves, or (2) if they represent their organization or the members thereof. While it may be true that Guillermo H. Pulia was the authorized representative of private respondents, he was a non-lawyer who did not fall in either of the foregoing categories. Hence, by clear mandate of the law, he is not entitled to attorney’s fees.

● Furthermore, the statutory rule that an attorney shall be entitled to have and recover from his client a reasonable compensation for his services necessarily imports the existence of an attorney-client relationship as a condition for the recovery of attorney’s fees, and such relationship cannot exist unless the client’s representative is a lawyer.

18.
18.

Garcia v. Lopez 2007

FACTS:

● Atty. Garcia charged Atty. Lopez with violation of his oath as a

officer of the court, and

member

of

the

bar

and

ETHICS 3/23

CANON 7-13

misrepresentation, amounting to perjury and prayed that respondent be suspended or disbarred.

● Garcia was the counsel of the late Sarmiento, who sought the

registration and confirmation of her title over a tract of land – granted by court.

● The Land Registration Authority (LRA) was directed to issue the decree of registration and certificate of title which LRA failed to comply.

● Lopez, claiming to be the counsel of the heirs of Sarmiento, filed his entry of appearance and motion for postponement.

○ Garcia was surprised by this considering that he had not withdrawn from the case.

○ He contended that respondent should be sanctioned for misrepresenting to the court that he was the counsel of all the heirs of Sarmiento and omitting to mention that complainant was the counsel of record. ■ Lopez asserts that it was an honest mistake and did not intend misrepresentation.

● The investigating commissioner of Commission on Bar Discipline of IBP (IBP-CBD) found Lopez guilty of

misrepresentation and violation of Rule 8.02 CPR when he failed to specify the individuals he was representing.

○ Recommended that Lopez be reprimanded.

ISSUE:

HELD: SC affirms the findings but modifies the penalty recommended. Lawyers must act honorably, fairly and candidly towards each other and otherwise conduct themselves beyond reproach at all times.Lawyers are officers of the court who are empowered to appear, prosecute and defend the causes of their clients. The law imposes on them peculiar duties, responsibilities and liabilities. Membership in the bar imposes on them certain obligations. They are duty bound to uphold the dignity of the legal profession. They must act

honorably, fairly and candidly towards each other and otherwise conduct themselves beyond reproach at all times.

Respondent clearly violated his lawyer’s oath that he will “do no falsehood nor consent to the doing of any in court.”Complainant was the counsel of Sarmiento, the original applicant. Upon her death, the attorney-client relationship was terminated. However, complainant was retained as counsel by Gina Jarviña and Alfredo Ku. In filing an entry of appearance with motion of postponement in behalf of the “compulsory heirs of the late Angelita Sarmiento” when in truth he was merely representing some of the heirs but not all of them, respondent was guilty of misrepresentation which could have deceived the court. He had no authorization to represent all the heirs. He clearly violated his lawyer’s oath that he will “do no falsehood nor consent to the doing of any in court.”

● Canon 8 demands that lawyers conduct themselves with

courtesy, fairness and candor toward their fellow lawyers.

○ Relate to Canon 10, Rule 10.01.

● Respondent failed to observe the foregoing rules. He made it appear that he was entering as the counsel for all the heirs of Sarmiento which was highly unfair to the complainant who worked on the case from the very beginning (since 1996).

● Lopez is suspended from the practice of law for 1 month for violating Canons 8 and 10, Rules 8.02 and 10.01.

● The lawyer’s oath is a source of obligations and violation thereof is a ground for suspension, disbarment or other disciplinary action. (Oria vs. Tupaz,438 SCRA 575 [2004])

19.
19.

Florido v. Florido 2004

FACTS:

ETHICS 3/23

CANON 7-13

● This is an administrative complaint for the disbarment of respondent Atty. James Benedict C. Florido and his eventual removal from the Roll of Attorneys for allegedly violating his oath as a lawyer “by manufacturing, flaunting and using a spurious and bogus Court of Appeals Resolution/Order.”

● Natasha V. Hueysuwan-Florido averred that she is the legitimate spouse of respondent Atty. James Benedict C. Florido, but that they are estranged and living separately from each other. They have two children which are in the custody of Natasha.

● Sometime in Dec 2001, James went to Natasha’s house demanding that their two children be surrendered to him.

○ He showed complainant a photocopy of an alleged Resolution issued by the Court of Appeals which supposedly granted his motion for temporary child custody.

○ She asked for the original copy which James failed to give. Natasha refused to give custody of the children. ■ Natasha verified the authenticity of the aforementioned Resolution but the CA stated that no such resolution ordering the surrender of custody has been issued.

● In Jan. 15, 2002, James, accompanied by armed men, suddenly arrived and demanded Natasha that she surrender the the children to him. He threatened to take them away with the help of the armed men.

● She filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus but was dismissed. Hence, she filed the instant complaint alleging that respondent violated his attorney’s oath by manufacturing, flaunting and using a spurious Court of Appeals’ Resolution in and outside a court of law. Furthermore, respondent abused and misused the privilege granted to him by the Supreme Court to practice law in the country.

● The IBP-CBD recommended that he be suspended from the practice of law for 3 years that another offense of this nature will result in disbarment.

● IBP Board of Governors modified that suspension be increased to 6 years. ISSUE:Whether or not the respondent can be held administratively liable for his reliance on and attempt to enforce a spurious Resolution of the Court of Appeals. HELD: SC affirms but modified the suspension to a period of 2 years.

A lawyer who used a spurious Resolution of the Court of Appeals is presumed to have participated in its fabrication.—In his answer to the complaint, respondent claims that he acted in good faith in invoking the Court of Appeals Resolution which he honestly believed to be authentic. This, however, is belied by the fact that he used and presented the spurious Resolution several times. As pointed out by the Investigating Commissioner, the assailed Resolution was presented by respondent on at least two occasions: first,in his Petition for Issuance of Writ of Habeas Corpus docketed as Special Proc. Case No. 3898, which he filed with the Regional Trial Court of Dumaguete City; and second,when he sought the assistance of the Philippine National Police (PNP) of Tanjay City to recover custody of his minor children from complainant. Since it was respondent who used the spurious Resolution, he is presumed to have participated in its fabrication.

The burden cast on the judiciary would be intolerable if it could not take at face value what is asserted by counsel.—Candor and fairness are demanded of every lawyer. The burden cast on the

judiciary would be intolerable if it could not take at face value what is asserted by counsel. The time that will have to be devoted just to the task of verification of allegations submitted could easily be imagined. Even with due recognition then that counsel is expected to display the

ETHICS 3/23

CANON 7-13

utmost zeal in the defense of a client’s cause, it must never be at the expense of the truth.

● Relate with Canon 10, Rule 10.01, and Rule 10.02.

A lawyer’s language should be forceful but dignified, emphatic but respectfully as befitting an advocate and in keeping with the dignity of the legal profession.—Moreover, the records show that respondent used offensive language in his pleadings in describing complainant and her relatives. A lawyer’s language should be forceful but dignified, emphatic but respectful as befitting an advocate and in keeping with the dignity of the legal profession. The lawyer’s arguments whether written or oral should be gracious to both court and opposing counsel and should be of such words as may be properly addressed by one gentleman to another. By calling complainant, a “sly manipulator of truth” as well as a “vindictive congenital prevaricator”, hardly measures to the sobriety of speech demanded of a lawyer.

● Respondent’s actions erode the public perception of the legal profession. They constitute gross misconduct and the sanctions for such malfeasance is prescribed by Section 27, Rule 138 of the Rules of Court which states:

SEC. 27. Disbarment and suspension of attorneys by Supreme Court, grounds therefore.A member of the bar may be disbarred or suspended from his office as attorney by the Supreme Court for any deceit, malpractice or other gross misconduct in such office, grossly immoral conduct or by reason of his conviction of a crime involving moral turpitude, or for any violation of the oath which he is required to take before the admission to practice, or for a willful disobedience appearing as attorney for a party without authority to do so.

20.
20.

Samala v. Valencia 2007

FACTS:

● This is a complaint is filed by Samala against Atty. Valencia for Disbarment on the following grounds:

(a) serving on two separate occasions as counsel for

contending parties;

(b) knowingly misleading the court by submitting false

documentary evidence; (c) initiating numerous cases in exchange for nonpayment of rental fees; and (d) having a reputation of being immoral by siring illegitimate children.

● IBP Commissioner Reyes found Valencia guilty of violating Canons 15 and 21 of the Code of Professional Responsibility and recommended the penalty of suspension for six months.

● IBP Board of Governors adopted and approved the report and recommendation of Commissioner Reyes but increased the penalty of suspension from six months to one year.

On knowingly misleading the court by submitting false documentary evidence:

● Samala alleges that in a civil case filed before the MTC for ejectment, Valencia submitted a TCT as evidence of Valdez’s ownership despite the fact that a new TCT was already issued in the name of Alba (Feb 2, 1995)

● Records reveal that Valencia presented the same TCT as evidence of Valdez’s ownership of the subject property on Nov 27, 2000. During the hearing before Comm. Raval, Valencia avered that when the Answer was filed in that case, was the time when he came to know that the title was already in the name of Alba. So that when the court dismissed the complaint, he did not do anything anymore.

● Valencia further avers that Valdez did not tell him the truth and things were revealed to him only when the case for rescission was filed in 2002.

ETHICS 3/23

CANON 7-13

● Upon examination of the record, it was noted that the civil case for rescission of contract and cancellation of the new TCT under Alba’s name was also filed on November 27, 2000, before the RTC.

● Thus, belying the averment of respondent that he came to know of Alba’s title only in 2002 when the case for rescission was filed.

● It was revealed during the hearing before Comm. Raval that civil case for ejectment and the civil case for rescission were filed on the same date, although in different courts and at different times. ISSUE: Whether or not Valencia should be disbarred. HELD: SC adopts the report of IBP Board of Governors except the issue on immorality and the recommended penalty. Falsehood; It matters not that the trial court was not misled by a lawyer’s submission of a certificate of title which was already cancelled and a new one issued in the name of some other person—what is decisive in this case is his intent in trying to mislead the court.Respondent cannot feign ignorance of the fact that the title he submitted was already cancelled in lieu of a new title issued in the name of Alba in 1995 yet, as proof of the latter’s ownership. Respondent failed to comply with Canon 10 of the Code of Professional Responsibility which provides that a lawyer shall not do any falsehood, nor consent to the doing of any in court; nor shall he mislead, or allow the Court to be mislead by any artifice. It matters not that the trial court was not misled by respondent’s submission of TCT No. 273020 in the name of Valdez, as shown by its decision dated January 8, 2002 dismissing the complaint for ejectment. What is decisive in this case is respondent’s intent in trying to mislead the court by presenting TCT No. 273020 despite the fact that said title was already cancelled and a new one, TCT No. 275500, was already issued in the name of Alba.

A lawyer should bear in mind that as an officer of the court his high vocation is to correctly inform the court upon the law and the facts of the case and to aid it in doing justice and arriving at correct conclusion.—In Young v. Batuegas,403 SCRA 123 (2003), we held that a lawyer must be a disciple of truth. He swore upon his admission to the Bar that he will “do no falsehood nor consent to the doing of any in court” and he shall “conduct himself as a lawyer according to the best of his knowledge and discretion with all good fidelity as well to the courts as to his clients.” He should bear in mind that as an officer of the court his high vocation is to correctly inform the court upon the

law and the facts of the case and to aid it in doing justice and arriving at correct conclusion. The courts, on the other hand, are entitled to expect only complete honesty from lawyers appearing and pleading before them. While a lawyer has the solemn duty to defend his client’s rights and is expected to display the utmost zeal in defense of his client’s cause, his conduct must never be at the expense of truth. A lawyer is the servant of the law and belongs to a profession to which society has entrusted the administration of law and the dispensation of justice. As such, he should make himself more an exemplar for others to emulate.

Atty. Luciano D. Valencia suspended from practice of law for three (3) years for misconduct and violation of Canons 21, 10 and 1 of Code of Professional Responsibility.

21.
21.

Rheem of the Phils. v. Ferrer 1967

RHEEM OF THE PHILIPPINES, INC. v. ZOILO R. FERRER G.R. No. L-22979 June 26, 1967

FACTS:

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In Re Proceedings Against Alfonso Ponce Enrile, Leonardo Siguion Reyna, Manuel G. Montecillo, Enrique M. Belo, Oscar R. Ongsiako, And Jose S. Armonio.

In the petitioners’ verified return, they offered their most sincere apologies for the language used and stated that it was not and it has never been their intention to be disrespectful.

The proceeding for contempt is an offshoot of the Court of Industrial Relations’ denial of petitioner’s motion to dismiss the respondent’s complaints

When petitioners lost a case challenging the jurisdiction of the CIR to hear and determine a case seeking reinstatement with back wages, damages, separation pay, night differential, and premium pay, Atty. Armonio filed a motion for reconsideration that had a sarcastic tone and insulting implications.

“One pitfall into which this Honorable Court has repeatedly fallen whenever the question as to whether or not a particular subject matter is within the jurisdiction of the Court of Industrial Relations is the tendency of this Honorable Court to rely upon its own pronouncement without due regard to the statutes which delineate the jurisdiction of the industrial court. Quite often, it is overlooked that no court, not even this Honorable Court, is empowered to expand or contract through its decision the scope of its jurisdictional authority as conferred by law. This error is manifested by the decisions of this Honorable Court citing earlier rulings but without making any reference to and analysis of the pertinent statute governing the jurisdiction of the Court of Industrial Relations. This manifestation appears in this Honorable Court's decision in the instant case. As a result, the errors committed in earlier cases dealing with the jurisdiction of the industrial court are perpetuated in subsequent cases involving the same issue

The Court ordered counsel to show cause why they should not be dealt with for contempt of court.

Respondent members of the law firm, namely, Attys. Alfonso Ponce Enrile, Leonardo Siguion Reyna, Manuel G. Montecillo, Enrique M. Belo and Oscar R. Ongsiako assumed "full responsibility" for what appears in the motion for reconsideration. They submitted, not as an excuse, but as fact, that not one of the partners was able to pass upon the draft or final form of the said motion, and that Atty. Armonio, an associate, prepared, signed and filed the motion "without clearing it with any of the partners of the firm." The return winds up with an expression of deep regret about the incident, coupled with an earnest pledge that it "shall never happen again."

ISSUE:

Whether or not Atty. Armonio’s statements in the motion for reconsideration violated a lawyer’s duty of respect to courts.

HELD:

The Court concedes that a lawyer may think highly of his intellectual endowment. That is his privilege. And, he may suffer frustration at what he feels is others’ lack of it. That is his misfortune. Some such frame of mind, however, should not be allowed to harden into a belief that he may attack a court’s decision in words calculated to jettison the time-honored aphorism that courts are the temples of right. He should give due allowance to the fact that judges are but men; and men are encompassed by error, fettered by fallibility.

Furthermore, the Court is not unmindful of counsel’s statement that the language used was not in any way meant to slight or offend this

Court. Want of intention, we feel constrained to say, is no excuse for the language employed. For counsel cannot escape responsibility by

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claiming that his words did not mean what any reader must have understood them as meaning. At best, it extenuates liability. Rule 138, Section 20(b) of ROC: It is the duty of an attorney to observe and maintain the respect due to the courts of justice and judicial officers. The first canon of legal ethics states that "it is the duty of the lawyer to maintain towards the Courts a respectful attitude, not for the sake of the temporary incumbent of the judicial office, but for the maintenance of its supreme importance." That same canon, as a corollary, makes it peculiarly incumbent upon lawyers to support the courts against "unjust criticism and clamor." Canon 1: A lawyer shall uphold the Constitution, obey the laws of the land, and promote respect for law and legal processes.

The lawyer’s oath solemnly binds him to a conduct that should be

to the courts.” Worth remembering is that the

duty of an attorney to the courts can only be maintained by rendering no service involving any disrespect to the judicial office which he is bound to uphold. Atty. Armonio was admonished with a warning that repetition of this incident will be dealt with accordingly

“with all good fidelity

22.
22.

Ceniza v. Sebastian 1984

AMADO S. CENIZA v. ALEJANDRO E. SEBASTIAN G.R. No. L-39914 July 2, 1984

FACTS:

Judge Alejandro E. Sebastian, now retired, inhibited from trying a civil case in the then Court of First Instance of Davao. The paragraph in such motion that apparently gave offense follows:

"That because of certain personal acts or conduct displayed by the Presiding Judge in handling the above case, which the Defendant and her counsel deem as highly irregular, corrupt and a gross misconduct for a Judge to do, the undersigned counsel for Defendant has already filed an Administrative Case against the herein Presiding Judge in the Supreme Court, now docketed therein as 'Administrative Matter No. 846-CFI, x x x’ and, that by virtue of these, the bias and prejudice of the Presiding Judge against the Defendant and her counsel in the above case, is intensified and heightened, and consequently the Presiding Judge in the above case, will no longer have that sense of justice, that equanimity of emotion, that detached and unaffected feeling and that disinterested and impartial compartment which all judges ought to have and maintain while hearing and deciding a case before them."

He referred to the well-settled doctrines that the use in pleadings of language disrespectful to the court or containing offensive words constitutes direct contempt, amounting as it does to a misbehaviour in the presence of or so near a court or judge as to interrupt the administration of justice.

He stressed the point further in this way: "In the instant case, the Court held Atty. Ceniza guilty of direct contempt for stating in his motion for the judge's inhibition, among others, that he was corrupt'. No self-respecting judge will tolerate such a vile language in a lawyer's pleading; and punishing such a presumptuous and insolent lawyer can never be termed abuse of power or discretion amounting to lack of jurisdiction correctible by certiorari or prohibition.

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Respondent Judge, accordingly, submitted his Comment to the petition. There was a clear admission in such comment that it was the allegation in paragraph 6 of the Ex-Parte Motion to Have Presiding Judge Inhibit Himself from Trying the Case which led to the issuance of the warrant of arrest, petitioner being guilty of direct contempt. Thus: "For caging the respondent 'corrupt' in said motion, the Court issued an Order dated December 20, 1974 holding petitioner guilty of direct contempt and sentenced him to 10 days imprisonment and P200 fine.

ISSUE:

Whether or not the warrant of arrest of Atty. Ceniza is valid

A.C. No. 8954 November 13, 2013

FACTS:

Respondent Atty. Rodolto Flores (Atty. Flores) was counsel for the defendant in Civil Case No. 1863 captioned as Marsha Aranas plaintiff versus Arnold Balmores defendant a suit for damages filed before the Municipal Trial Court of San Mateo, Rizal and presided by herein complainant Judge Maribeth Rodriguez-Manahan (Judge Manahan). During the proceedings in Civil Case No. 1863, Judge Manahan issued an Order1 dated January 12, 2011, whereby she voluntarily inhibited from hearing Civil Case No. 1863.

HELD:

This Court, on the above facts, sustains respondent Judge in finding that there was a direct contempt committed but likewise holds that, conformably to the controlling doctrine that the power to punish for contempt should be exercised on the preservative and not vindictive principle, modifies the judgment by lifting the warrant of arrest but increasing the fine imposed to P500 WHEREFORE, certiorari is granted declaring null and void the ten-day sentence and quashing the warrant of arrest. Respondent Judge, or whoever acts in his stead, is prohibited from enforcing such order. The temporary restraining order is made permanent as regards the imposition of the ten-day imprisonment and the serving of the warrant of arrest. The fine imposed should be increased to P500.00.

23.
23.

Rodriguez-Manahan v. Flores 2013

HON. MARIBETH RODRIGUEZ-MANAHAN v. ATTY. RODOLFO FLORES

Said order reads: “More than mere contempt do his (Atty. Flores)

unethical actuations, his traits of dishonesty and discourtesy not only

to his own brethren in the legal profession, but also to the bench and

judges, would amount to grave misconduct, if not a malpractice of law,

a serious ground for disciplinary action of a member of the bar pursuant to Rules 139 a & b.

IN VIEW WHEREOF, furnish a copy of this Order to the Bar Discipline

Committee, Integrated Bar of the Philippines, to the Supreme Court en banc, for appropriate investigation and sanction.”

The preliminary conference was reset several times for failure of respondent Atty. Flores to appear and submit his Pre-Trial Brief

indicating thereon his MCLE compliance. Atty. Flores filed a letter instead stating:

“If only to give your Honor another chance to prove your pro plaintiff

sentiment, I am hereby filing the attached Motion which you may once more assign to the waste basket of nonchalance. With the small respect that still remains, I have asked the defendant to look for

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another lawyer to represent him for I am no longer interested in this case because I feel I cannot do anything right in your sala.”

The Investigating Judge found Atty. Flores to have failed to give due respect to the court by failing to obey court orders, by failing to submit proof of his compliance with the Mandatory Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) requirement, and for using intemperate language in his pleadings. The Investigating Judge recommended that Atty. Flores be suspended from the practice of law for one year.

ISSUE:

Whether or not Atty. Flores be suspended from practice of law by disobeying court orders and for using intemperate language in his pleading

It appears that this is the first infraction committed by respondent. Also, we are not prepared to impose on the respondent the penalty of one-year suspension for humanitarian reasons. Respondent manifested before this Court that he has been in the practice of law for half a century. Thus, he is already in his twilight years. Considering the foregoing, we deem it proper to fine respondent in the amount of 5,000.00 and to remind him to be more circumspect in his acts and to obey and respect court processes.

24.
24.

Salabao v. Villaruel 2015

PATROCINIA H. SALABAO v.ATTY. ANDRES C. VILLARUEL, JR. A.C. No. 8084 August 24, 2015

HELD:

There is no doubt that Atty. Flores failed to obey the trial court’s order to submit proof of his MCLE compliance notwithstanding the several opportunities given him. "Court orders are to be respected not because the judges who issue them should be respected, but because of the respect and consideration that should be extended to the judicial branch of the Government. This is absolutely essential if our Government is to be a government of laws and not of men. Respect must be had not because of the incumbents to the positions, but because of the authority that vests in them. Disrespect to judicial incumbents is disrespect to that branc the Government to which they belong, as well as to the State which has instituted the judicial system."

Atty. Flores also employed intemperate language in his pleadings. As an officer of the court, Atty. Flores is expected to be circumspect in his language. However, we find the recommended penalty too harsh and not commensurate with the infractions committed by the respondent.

This is a complaint for disbarment filed by Patrocinia H. Salabao (complainant) against Atty. Andres C. Villaruel, Jr. (respondent) for abuse of court processes in violation of Canons 10 and 12 of the Code of Professional Responsibility.

FACTS:

Complainant narrates that in 1995 she filed a case against Elmer Lumberio for his deceitful or fraudulent conduct of taking her precious real property situated in Taguig City. After hearing, the Regional Trial Court (RTC), Branch 162, Pasig City issued its resolution in her favor in 2002. Respondent then entered the picture as counsel for Lumberio. From then on, Complainant complained that Respondent had made her suffer because of his abuse of processes and disregard for her rights as a litigant. In 2002, the Regional Trial

Court Pasig City issued its resolution in her favor. In order to delay the case, Respondent brought the case on appeal to the Court of

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Appeals. The Court of Appeals decided in her favor on January 13, 2004 but Respondent again filed an appeal before the Supreme Court. Lumberio lost and the case became final and executory.

Respondent filed several Motion, Inhibition and Contempt that were meant to delay the resolution of the case. He likewise filed an administrative case against Judge Briccio Ygaña of RTC Branch 153, Taguig City.

Complainant then complained that Respondent had done more than enough to suppress her rights as a winning litigant and filed this case for abuse of processes pursuant to Rule 10.03 and Rule 10.02 of Canon 10 and Rule 12.04 of Canon 12 of the Code of Professional Responsibility (CPR). Respondent, for his part, denied the accusation and clarified that the several pleadings he had filed had centered on the legality of the court's decision ordering the cancellation of the title of Lumberio in such ordinary proceeding for cancellation of the title. To his mind, the said ordinary proceeding for cancellation of title before the RTC Branch 153, Taguig City was void because the law vests upon the government through the Solicitor General the power to initiate a reversion case if there is such a ground to cancel the title issued by the Land Management Bureau in favor of Lumberio.

Should respondent be held administratively liable?

HELD:

YES. While it is true that lawyers owe "entire devotion" to the cause of their clients, it cannot be emphasized enough that their first and primary duty is "not to the client but to the administration of justice." Canon 12 of the Code of Professional Responsibility states that "A lawyer shall exert every effort and consider it his duty to assist in the speedy and efficient administration of justice." Thus, in the use of Court processes, the lawyer's zeal to win must be tempered by the paramount consideration that justice be done to all parties involved, and the lawyer for the losing party should not stand in the way of the execution of a valid judgment.

In this case, the judgment in favor of complainant had become final and executory by July 27, 2005. Respondent however proceeded to file no less than twelve (12) motions and cases in various courts subsequent to the Entry of Judgment. From the nature and sheer number of motions and cases filed, it is clear that respondent's intention was to delay the execution of the final judgment. In epitome, to sustain petitioner's insinuation of extrinsic fraud is to make a mockery of our judicial system. In so doing, he is administratively liable for his actions.

In his Report and Recommendation, the Investigating Commissioner found at respondent "relentlessly filed petitions and appeals in order to exhaust all possible remedies to obtain relief for his client" which he considered as tantamount to "abusive and a spiteful effort to delay the execution of Judgment." He thus recommended that respondent be meted out the penalty of suspension for four months. In its Resolution the IBP Board of Governors adopted and approved the findings and recommendation of the Investigating Commissioner.

ISSUE:

WHEREFORE, premises considered, respondent Atty. Andres C. Villaruel, Jr. is hereby found GUILTY of violation of the Lawyer's Oath and Rules 10.03 and 12.04 of the Code of Professional Responsibility and is hereby suspended from the practice of law for a period of eighteen (18) months.

25.
25.

Re: Suspension of Atty. Bagabuyo 2007

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Canons/Rules Involved:

Rule 11.05 - A lawyer shall submit grievances against a Judge to the proper authorities only. Rule 13.02 - A lawyer shall not make public statements in the media regarding a pending case tending to arouse public opinion for or against a party. Facts: This administrative case stemmed from the events of the Criminal

case proceeding originally raffled to the sala of Judge Floripinas C. Buyser,

who denied the Demurrer to the Evidence of the accused, declaring that the evidence thus presented by the prosecution was sufficient to prove the crime of homicide and not the charge of murder. Consequently, the counsel for the defense filed a Motion to Fix the Amount of Bail Bond. Respondent Atty. Rogelio Z. Bagabuyo, then Senior State Prosecutor and the deputized prosecutor of the case, objected thereto mainly on the ground that the original charge of murder, punishable with reclusion perpetua, was not subject to bail. Judge Buyser inhibited himself from further trying the case because of the “harsh insinuation” of Senior Prosecutor Rogelio Z. Bagabuyo that he “lacks the cold neutrality of an impartial magistrate,” by allegedly suggesting the filing of the motion to fix the amount of bail bond by counsel for the accused. The case was transferred to Judge Tan and Order favorably resolved the Motion to Fix the Amount of Bail Bond.

Respondent filed a motion for reconsideration which was denied for lack of merit. respondent appealed from the Orders to the CA. Instead of availing himself only of judicial remedies, respondent caused the publication of an article regarding the Order granting bail to the accused in Mindanao Gold Star Daily. Respondent posted the required bond and was released from the custody of the law. He appealed the indirect contempt order to the CA. Despite the citation of indirect contempt, respondent presented himself to the media for interviews in Radio Station DXKS, and again attacked the integrity of

Judge Tan and the trial court’s disposition in the proceedings of criminal Case.

Issue: Whether the respondent is guilty of violating Rule 11.05, Canon 11 and Rule 13.02, Canon 13 of the Code of Professional Responsibility, and of violating the Lawyer’s Oath?

Held: Yes, Respondent violated Canon 11 when he indirectly stated that Judge Tan was displaying judicial arrogance in the article entitled, Senior prosecutor lambasts Surigao judge for allowing murder suspect to bail out, which appeared in the Mindanao Gold Star Daily. Respondent’s statements in the article, which were made while Criminal. Case was still pending in court, also violated Rule 13.02 of Canon 13, which states that “a lawyer shall not make public statements in the media regarding a pending case tending to arouse public opinion for or against a party.” In regard to the radio interview given to Tony Consing, respondent violated Rule 11.05 of Canon 11 of the Code of Professional Responsibility for not resorting to the proper authorities only for redress of his grievances against Judge Tan. Respondent also violated Canon 11 for his disrespect of the court and its officer when he stated that Judge Tan was ignorant of the law, that as a mahjong aficionado, he was studying mahjong instead of studying the law, and that he was a liar. Respondent also violated the Lawyer’s Oath, as he has sworn to “conduct [himself] as a lawyer according to the best of [his] knowledge and discretion with all good fidelity as well to the courts as to [his] clients.

26.
26.

Marantan v. Diokno, et. al. 2014

G.R. No. 205956

February 12, 2014

Facts: Petitioner P/Supt. Hansel M. Marantan (Marantan) is the respondent in G.R. No. 199462, a petition filed on December 6, 2011,

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but already dismissed although the disposition is not yet final. Respondent Monique Cu-Unjieng La’O (La ‘O) is one of the petitioners in the said case, while respondent Atty. Jose Manuel Diokno (Atty. Diokno) is her counsel therein.

the RTC, branding Marantan and his coaccused guilty of murder in the Ortigas incident.

Issue: Whether or not the petition for contempt is meritorious.

G.R. No. 199462 relates to Criminal Case Nos. 146413-PSG, 146414-PSG and 146415-PSG, entitled “People of the Philippines v. P/SINSP Hansel M. Marantan, et al.,” pending before the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City, Branch 265 (RTC), where Marantan and his co-accused are charged with homicide. The criminal cases involve an incident which transpired on November 7, 2005, where Anton Cu-Unjieng (son of respondent La‘O), Francis Xavier Manzano, and

Brian Anthony Dulay, were shot and killed by police officers in front of the AIC Gold Tower at Ortigas Center, which incident was captured by

a television crew from UNTV 37 (Ortigas incident). In G.R. No.

199462, La‘O, together with the other petitioners, prayed, among others, that the resolution of the Office of the Ombudsman downgrading the charges from murder to homicide be annulled and set aside; that the corresponding informations for homicide be withdrawn; and that charges for murder be filed.

In the meantime, on January 6, 2013, a shooting incident occurred in

Barangay Lumutan, Municipality of Atimonan, Province of Quezon, where Marantan was the ground commander in a police-military team, which resulted in the death of thirteen (13) men (Atimonan incident). This encounter, according to Marantan, elicited much negative publicity for him. Marantan alleges that, riding on the unpopularity of the Atimonan incident, La‘O and her counsel, Atty. Diokno, and one Ernesto Manzano, organized and conducted a televised/radio broadcasted press conference. During the press conference, they maliciously made intemperate and unreasonable comments on the conduct of the Court in handling G.R. No. 199462, as well as contumacious comments on the merits of the criminal cases before

Held: No. The sub judice rule restricts comments and disclosures pertaining to the judicial proceedings in order to avoid prejudging the issue, influencing the court, or obstructing the administration of justice. A violation of this rule may render one liable for indirect contempt under Sec. 3(d), Rule 71 of the Rules of Court,4 which reads:

Section 3. Indirect contempt to be punished after charge and hearing. – x x x a person guilty of any of the following acts may be punished for indirect contempt: x x x (d) Any improper conduct tending, directly or indirectly, to impede, obstruct, or degrade the administration of justice.

The proceedings for punishment of indirect contempt are criminal in nature. This form of contempt is conduct that is directed against the dignity and authority of the court or a judge acting judicially; it is an act obstructing the administration of justice which tends to bring the court into disrepute or disrespect. Intent is a necessary element in criminal contempt, and no one can be punished for a criminal contempt unless the evidence makes it clear that he intended to commit it.

For a comment to be considered as contempt of court “it must really appear” that such does impede, interfere with and embarrass the administration of justice. What is, thus, sought to be protected is the all-important duty of the court to administer justice in the decision of a pending case. The specific rationale for the sub judice rule is that courts, in the decision of issues of fact and law should be immune from every extraneous influence; that facts should be decided upon

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evidence produced in court; and that the determination of such facts should be uninfluenced by bias, prejudice or sympathies.

The power of contempt is inherent in all courts in order to allow them to conduct their business unhampered by publications and comments which tend to impair the impartiality of their decisions or otherwise obstruct the administration of justice. As important as the maintenance of freedom of speech, is the maintenance of the independence of the Judiciary. The “clear and present danger” rule may serve as an aid in determining the proper constitutional boundary between these two rights.

The “clear and present danger” rule means that the evil consequence of the comment must be “extremely serious and the degree of imminence extremely high” before an utterance can be punished. There must exist a clear and present danger that the utterance will harm the administration of justice. Freedom of speech should not be impaired through the exercise of the power of contempt of court unless there is no doubt that the utterances in question make a serious and imminent threat to the administration of justice. It must constitute an imminent, not merely a likely, threat.

27.
27.

In Re Almacen 1970

Facts: Atty. Almacen was the counsel of Virginia Yaptinchay in a civil case. They lost in a civil case but Almacen filed for a Motion for Reconsideration. He notified the opposing party of said motion but failed to indicate the time and place of hearing of said motion.

He appealed to the Court of Appeals but motion was denied. He filed an appeal on certiorari before the Supreme Court which outrightly denied his appeal in a minute resolution.

Atty. Almacen called such minute resolution as unconstitutional. He filed before the Supreme Court a petition to surrender his lawyer’s certificate as he claimed that it was useless to continue practicing his profession when members of the high court are men who are calloused to pleas for justice, who ignore without reasons their own applicable decisions and commit culpable violations of the Constitution with impunity.

He argues that due to the minute resolution, his client was made to pay P120,000.00 without knowing the reasons why and that his client became “one of the sacrificial victims before the altar of hypocrisy”.

He also contends that justice as administered by the present members of the Supreme Court is not only blind, but also deaf and dumb. The Supreme Court did not immediately act on Almacen’s petition as the Court wanted to wait for Almacen to actually surrender his certificate. Almacen, however, did not surrender his lawyer’s certificate though he now argues that he chose not to.

Issue: Does Almacen deserve disciplinary action?

HELD: YES. In this case, the Supreme Court clarified that minute resolutions are needed because the Supreme Court cannot accept every case or write full opinion for every petition they reject. The Supreme Court must decide “only on cases which present

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questions whose resolutions will have immediate importance beyond the particular facts and parties involved”.

The Supreme Court regarded Almacen’s criticisms as uncalled for. His right to criticize the decision of the courts has always been encouraged, but it shall be bona fide, and shall not spill over the wall of decency and propriety.

contemptuous. To be so the danger must cause a serious imminent threat to the administration of justice. Nor can we infer that such act has “a dangerous tendency” to belittle the court or undermine the administration of justice for the writer merely exercised his constitutional right to petition the government for redress of a legitimate grievance.

Petition is GRANTED and appealed decision is REVERSED.

28.
28.

Cabansag v. Fernandez 1957

FACTS:Apolonio Cabansag filed a complaint seeking the ejectment of Germiniana Fernandez from a parcel of land. He later wrote a letter to the Presidential Complaints and Action Commission (PCAC) regarding the delay in the disposition of his case before the CFI Pangasinan. The judge ordered Cabansag and his lawyers to show cause why he should not be held liable for contempt for sending such letter which tended to degrade the court in the eyes of the President (Magsaysay) and the people. After due hearing, the court rendered a decision finding Cabansag and his lawyers guilty of contempt and sentencing them to pay a fine.

ISSUE(S): Whether or not Cabansag’s letter created a sufficient danger to a fair administration of justice?

RULING: NO. The letter was sent to the Office of the President asking for help because of the precarious predicament of Cabansag. While the course of action he had taken may not be a wise one for it would have been proper had he addressed his letter to the Secretary of Justice or to the Supreme Court, such act alone would not be

29.
29.

Rule:

Foodsphere v. Mauricio 2009

[AC No. 7199. July 22, 2009]

Rule 13.03 of the Canon of Professional Responsibility

● Canon 1, 7, 8, 8.01 and 11 of the CPR

FACTS: A certain Alberto Cordero (Cordero) purportedly bought from

a grocery in Valenzuela City canned goods including a can of CDO

Liver spread. As Cordero and his relatives were eating bread with the

CDO Liver spread, they found the spread to be sour and soon

discovered a colony of worms inside the can. This was complained

before the BFAD. After conciliation meetings between Cordero and

the petitioner, the Corderos eventually forged a KASUNDUAN

seeking the withdrawal of their complaint before the BFAD. The

BFAD thus dismissed the complaint. Respondent, Atty. Mauricio, Jr.,

who affixed his signature to the KASUNDUAN as a witness, later

wrote in one of his articles/columns in a tabloid that he prepared the

document.

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Complainant filed criminal complaints against respondent and several

others for Libel and Threatening to Publish Libel under Articles 353

and 356 of the Revised Penal Code before the Office of the City

Prosecutor of Quezon City and Valenzuela City. The complaints were

pending at the time of the filing of the present administrative

complaint. Despite the pendency of the civil case against him and the

issuance of a status quo order restraining/enjoining further publishing,

televising and broadcasting of any matter relative to the complaint of

CDO, respondent continued with his attacks against complainant and

its products.

ISSUE:

Professional Responsibility.

W

hether

or

not

the

respondent

violated

the

Code

of

HELD: YES. Respondent suspended for three (3) years from the

practice of law.

above-quoted language in his pleadings is manifestly violative of

Canon 11 and the fundamental Canon 1 also of the Code of

Professional Responsibility, which mandates lawyers to “uphold the

Constitution, obey the laws of the land and promote respect for law

and legal processes.” Respondent defied said status quo order,

despite his (respondent’s) oath as a member of the legal profession to

“obey the laws as well as the legal orders of the duly constituted

authorities.”

Further, respondent violated Canon 8 and Rule 8.01 of the Code of

Professional Responsibility which mandate, and by failing to live up to

his oath and to comply with the exacting standards of the legal

profession, respondent also violated Canon 7 of the Code of

Professional Responsibility, which directs a lawyer to “at all times

uphold the integrity and the dignity of the legal profession.

RATIO:The above actuations of respondent are also in violation of

Rule 13.03 of the Canon of Professional Responsibility which reads:

“A lawyer shall not make public statements in the media regarding a

pending case tending to arouse public opinion for or against a party.”

The language employed by respondent undoubtedly casts aspersions

on the integrity of the Office of the City Prosecutor and all the

Prosecutors connected with said Office. Respondent clearly assailed

the impartiality and fairness of the said Office in handling cases filed

before it and did not even design to submit any evidence to

substantiate said wild allegations. The use by respondent of the