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Arts 21-88


According to their divisibility According to their subject matter According to their gravity
Principal penalties – those expressly Indivisible – no fixed duration Corporal (Death) Capital
imposed by the court in the judgment Death Deprivation of Freedom (reclusion Afflictive
of conviction; Reclusion Perpetua perpetua, prision, arresto) Correctional
Accessory – those that are deemed Perpetual absolute or temporary Restriction of freedom (destierro) Light
included in the imposition of the disqualification Deprivation of rights (disqualification
principal penalties; Public Censure and suspension)
Pecuniary (Fine)
Penalties that are either principal or Divisible – those that have fixed
accessory: duration and are divisible into three
Perpetual or temporary absolute
Perpetual or temporary special


Table 1 (Duration)

Reclusion Perpetua Reclusion Temporal Prision Mayor Prision Coreccional Arresto Mayor
(indivisible penalty)
NOTE: No duration
20 years and 1 day – 40 12 years and 1 day – 20 6 years and 1 day to 12 6 mos and 1 day to 6 years 1 month and 1 day to 6 mos
years years years
 Suspension of the
Rationale: that a person  Civil interdiction right to hold office
condemned of RP shall  Perpetual and right of
remain to prison perpetually absolute suffrage
or for the rest of his life. disqualification  Correctional
However, he becomes  Afflictive penalty penalty
eligible for pardon, after he  Prescribes in 15  Prescribes in 5
has been imprisoned for at years yrs
least 30 years.

Table 2 (Duration and Effect)

Principal Penalties Duration Effect Accessory Penalties
Capital Punishment

Death (suspended) Indivisible Perpetual AD ; Civil Interdiction

Afflictive Penalty

Reclusion Perpetua 20 yrs and 1 day – 40 years (indv) Perpetual AD; Civil interdiction
Perpetual or temporary absolute Lifetime (in case of temporary, they See Art 30
disqualification follow the duration of principal p1)
Perpetual or temporary special Lifetime See Art 31
Reclusion Temporal 12 yrs and 1 day – 20 yrs Perpetual AD; Civil interdiction
Prision Mayor 6 yrs and 1 day – 12 yrs Temporary AD; perpetual disq of right
to suffrage
Correctional Penalties

Prision coreccional 6 mos and 1 day – 6yrs Suspension from po,p; Perpetual SD 2
Suspension 6 mos and 1 day – 6yrs See Art 33
Destierro 6 mos and 1 day – 6yrs Prohibition: 25-250km radius
Arresto Mayor 1 mo and 1 day – 6 mos Suspension of the right to hold office
Light Penalties

Arresto Menor 1 day – 30 days

Public Sensure
Penalties common to the three
preceding classes
Bond to keep the peace

To illustrate: if the penalty imposed is arresto mayor, the duration of the accessory penalty of suspension of the right to hold public office and the right of suffrage
shall be that of the same as arresto mayor;
Perpetual special disqualification from suffrage
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Reclusion Perpetua iii. Suspension form public office during trial or in order to
institute the action is not a penalty because it is not
Q: What is the duration of Reclusion Perpetua? imposed in a judicial proceeding;
A: None. Reclusion Perpetua has no duration because this is an indivisible iv. Fines and other corrective measures imposed by superior
penalty and indivisible penalties have no durations. officers upon their subordinate in the exercise of
administrative or disciplinary powers;
Q: What then may be the reason for the amendment fixing the duration of v. Deprivation of rights and reparations w/c the civil law
reclusion perpetua? establishes in penal form;
A: This question was answered in the same case of People v. Lucas by
quoting pertinent portion of the decision in People v. Reyes, 212 SCRA  They are not considered as penalties (because not imposed as
402, thus: result of judicial proceedings) They are merely preventive
measures BEFORE conviction of the offenders;
The imputed duration of thirty (30) years  Q: Why does the Revised Penal Code specify that such
for reclusion perpetua, thereof, is only to serve as the detention shall not be a penalty but merely a preventive
basis for determining the convict’s eligibility for measure? A: This article gives justification for detaining the
pardon or for the application of the three-fold rule in accused. Otherwise, the detention would violate the
the service of penalties. Since, however, in all the constitutional provision that no person shall be deprived of life,
graduated scales of penalties in the Code, as set out liberty and property without due process of law. And also, the
in Article 25, 70 and 21, reclusion perpetua is the constitutional right of an accused to be presumed innocent until
penalty immediately next higher to reclusion the contrary is proved.
temporal, it follows by necessary implication that the  Correlate with Art 29 – Re deduction of their preventive
minimum of reclusion perpetua is twenty (20) years imprisonment from the term of imprisonment
and one (1) day with a maximum duration thereafter
to last for the rest of the convict’s natural life, Preventive Imprisonment
although, pursuant to Article 70, it appears that the Art 29
maximum period for the service of penalties shall not
exceed forty (40) years. It would be legally absurd Q: When is there preventive imprisonment?
and violative of the scales of penalties in the Code to A: When the offense charge is nonbailable, or if bailable, he cannot furnish
reckon the minimum of Reclusion Perpetua at thirty the required bail.
(30) years since there would thereby be a resultant
lacuna whenever the penalty exceeds the maximum Rules in crediting preventive imprisonment:
twenty (20) years of Reclusion Temporal but is less 1. If the detention prisoner voluntarily agrees in writing to abide by
than thirty (30) years. disciplinary rules- he shall be credited for the FULL TIME during
which he had undergone preventive imprisonment;
Except: (1) recidivist (2) upon being summoned for execution of
Q: If bond to keep the peace is not the same as bond for good behavior, sentence, failed to surrender voluntarily (3) habitual delinquent
are they one and the same bond that differ only in name? (4) escapees (5)persons charged with heinous crimes
A: No. The legal effect of each is entirely different. The legal effect of a 2. If the detention prisoner does not agree to abide – he shall be
failure to post a bond to keep the peace is imprisonment either for six credited 4/5 of the time during which he had undergone
months or 30 days, depending on whether the felony committed is grave preventive imprisonment;
or less grave on one hand, or it is light only on the other hand. The legal 3. If he had undergone preventive imprisonment for a period equal
effect of failure to post a bond for good behavior is not imprisonment but to or more than the possible maximum imprisonment of the
destierro under Article 284. Thus, it is clear that the two bonds are not the offense charged and his case is not yet terminated – he shall
same considering that the legal effect or the failure to put up the bond is be released immediately;
not the same. 4. If maximum penalty is destierro, he shall be released after 30
days of preventive imprisonment;

Section Two – Effects of the penalties according to their respective Nature
Constitutional Limitations Arts 30-39
1. No ex post facto law and bill of attainder may be imposed; Outline of the effects of penalties under Articles 30 to 35:
2. Due process;
3. No cruel and inhuman punishment 1. The penalties of perpetual or temporary absolute
disqualification for public office shall produce the ff. effects:
Prospectivity i. deprivation of public offices and employments, even if
conferred by election;
Purposes ii. deprivation of right to vote or to be elected;
1. Retribution; iii. disqualification for the offices or public employments and
2. Correction-Reformation; for the exercise of any of the rights mentioned;
3. Social Defense; iv. loss of right to retirement pay or pension for any office
formely held;
2. The penalties of perpetual or temporary special disqualficiation
Arts 21, 24 and 25 for public office, profession or calling produce the ff. effects:
i. deprivation of the office employment, profession or calling
 Under Art 21, penalties that may be imposed are only those affected;
provided by law prior to the commission of a felony (Nullum ii. disqualification for holding similar offices or employments
Crimen Nulla Poena Sine Lege); perpetually or during the term of the sentence;
 The penalties that may be imposed are provided under Art 25 of
the RPC. Those included in this provision are the only penalties 3. penalties of perpetual or temporary special disqualification for
that can be imposed. Otherwise, the judgment imposing the exercise of right of suffrage produce the ff. effects:
penalties other than those mentioned is defective. i. deprivation of the right to vote or to be elected to any
 The law does not permit any court to impose a sentence in the public office;
alternative, its duty being to indicate the penalty imposed ii. cannot hold any public office during the period of
definitely and positively; disqualification;

Art 24 provides for measures of prevention or safety for detention due to: 4. Penalties of suspension from public office, profession or calling
i. insanity, imbecility, illness requiring confinement at or the right of suffrage produce the ff. effects:
hospital; i. disqualification from holding such office or exercising such
ii. commitment of a minor in accordance with PD 603,as profession or calling or right of suffrage during the term of
amended; sentence;

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ii. if suspended from public office, the offender cannot hold The penalty complained of is neither cruel, unjust nor excessive. In Ex-
another office having similar functions during the period of parte Kemmler, 136 U.S., 436, the United States Supreme Court said that
suspension; 'punishments are cruel when they involve torture or a lingering death, but
the punishment of death is not cruel, within the meaning of that word as
5. Civil interdiction shall produce the ff. effects: used in the constitution. It implies there something inhuman and
i. deprivation of the rights of parental authority or barbarous, something more than the mere extinguishment of life.
guardianship of any ward;
ii. deprivation of marital authority; As to the second ground
iii. deprivation of the right to manage his property

6. Bonds to keep the peace Anent the second ground, we disagree with the court's predicate that the
i. The offender must present two sufficient sureties; gauge of whether or not a crime warrants the death penalty or not, is the
ii. The offender must deposit such amount with the clerk if attendance of the circumstance of death on the part of the victim. Such a
court to guarantee said undertaking premise is in fact an ennobling of the biblical notion of retributive justice of
iii. The offender may be detained, if he cannot give the bond, "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth". We have already demonstrated
for a period not to exceed 6 mos (if prosecuted for grave earlier in our discussion of heinous crimes that the forfeiture of life simply
or less grave felony) or a period not to exceed 30 days (if because life was taken, never was a defining essence of the death penalty
for light felony); in the context of our legal history and cultural experience; rather, the
death penalty is imposed in heinous crimes because the perpetrators
Effects of Pardon: thereof have committed unforgivably execrable acts that have so deeply
i. shall not work to the restoration of the right to hold public dehumanized a person or criminal acts with severely destructive effects
office (XPN: when any or both such rights is or are on the national efforts to lift the masses from abject poverty through
expressly restored by the terms of pardon); organized governmental strategies based on a disciplined and honest
ii. it shall not exempt the culprit from the payment of the civil citizenry, and because they have so caused irreparable and substantial
indemnity, injury to both their victim and the society and a repetition of their acts
 Limitations upon the exercise of the pardoning would pose actual threat to the safety of individuals and the survival of
power: (1) that the power can be exercised only after government, they must be permanently prevented from doing so. At any
conviction (2) that such power does not extend in rate, this court has no doubts as to the innate heinousness of the crime of
cases of impeachment rape, as we have held in the case of People v. Cristobal: [46]
 Pardon granted in general terms does not include
accessory penalty (XPN: when an absolute pardon is "Rape is the forcible violation of the sexual intimacy of another person. It
granted after the term of imprisonment has expired, does injury to justice and charity. Rape deeply wounds the respect,
it removes all that is left of the consequences of freedom, and physical and moral integrity to which every person has a
conviction) right. It causes grave damage that can mark the victim for life. It is always
an intrinsically evil act xxx an outrage upon decency and dignity that hurts
not only the victim but the society itself."
Death Penalty
We are not unaware that for all the legal posturings we have so essayed
1987 Constitution RA 7659 (1993) RA 9346 (2006) here, at the heart of the issue of capital punishment is the wistful,
Merely suspended 3 the Reimpose the Death Prohibited the sentimental life-and-death question to which all of us, without thinking,
imposition of the death Penalty; imposition of Death would answer, "life, of course, over death". But dealing with the
penalty Penalty fundamental question of death provides a context for struggling with even
Pp vs Echegaray - more basic questions, for to grapple with the meaning of death is, in an
Pp vs Munoz – case Pp vs Bon – case indirect way, to ask the meaning of life. Otherwise put, to ask what the
w/c discussed the discussed the effecrs rights are of the dying is to ask what the rights are of the living.
effects of the of RA 9346 on the "Capital punishment ought not to be abolished solely because it is
constitution on the proper penalty of substantially repulsive, if infinitely less repulsive than the acts which
proper penalty for attempted rep; invoke it. Yet the mounting zeal for its abolition seems to arise from a
murder reckoning point shall sentimentalized hyperfastidiousness that seeks to expunge from the
be Reclusion society all that appears harsh and suppressive. If we are to preserve the
Perpetua humane society we will have to retain sufficient strength of character and
will to do the unpleasant in order that tranquillity and civility may rule
Pp vs Sarcia comprehensively. It seems very likely that capital punishment is a x x x
Pp vs Arpon necessary, if limited factor in that maintenance of social tranquillity and
ought to be retained on this ground. To do otherwise is to indulge in the
PP vs ECHEGARAY (1997) luxury of permitting a sense of false delicacy to reign over the necessity of
social survival."
F: Accused Leo Echegaray committed the crime of rape against his 10 yr
old daughter. The crime having been committed sometime in April 1994,
during RA 7659 of the Death Penalty Law was in effect. In his appeal, he
assailed the constitutionality of the said law for being excessive, cruel and PP vs MUNOZ (1989)
inhuman – in violation of Sec 19(1) of the 1987 Constitution.
F: The killings here occurred in Pangasinan. Of the eleven persons who
Contentions of the accused: (1) that death penalty law is cruel, arbitrary were charged with murder for the killing of several persons which took
and barbarous (2) that it is not proportionate to the crime he committed- place in the house of certain Alejandro. The four who stood trial were
act of rape, because unlike in killing, it involves the taking of life. found guilty. 1 The other seven have yet to be identified and tried. The
sentence of Feliciano Muñoz, who did not appeal, has long become final
HELD: UNTENABLE. and executory and is now being served. 2 We deal here only with the
appeals of the other convicts, namely, Marvin Millora, Tomas Tayaba, and
When punishments are considered cruel? Jose Mislang, who all ask for a reversal.

SC found the accused to be liable for the killings, it is clear that from the
very start, when the eleven men went out to look for the suspected cattle
rustlers, there was already an agreement among them to ferret out and
punish the Bulataos whom they had condemned beforehand. They knew
Sec 19 par (1): Excessive fines shall not be imposed, nor cruel, degrading or whom they were looking for. They knew where to look for them. They
inhuman punishment inflicted. Neither shall death penalty be imposed, unless, sought each of them with drawn and ready weapons. When they reached
for compelling reasons involving heinous crimes, the Congress hereafter Mauro Bulatao's house, four of them went inside while the rest deployed
provides for it. Any death penalty already imposed shall be reduced to themselves in strategic positions. When Millora shot Mauro, the appellants
reclusion perpetua. and the others stood by with guns at the ready. Nobody moved to dissuade
or stop him. Together they dragged Aquilino from the house and the rest
watched while Muñoz kicked him in the head while helpless on the

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ground. Together, they took him with them and then forced Juana Bulatao now be divided into three new periods in keeping with the three-grade
to lead them to her husband. The rest stood by with their weapons as scheme intended by the legislature. Those who disagree feel that Article
Muñoz shot Alejandro in the head. No one interceded to stop him from III, Section 19(l) merely prohibits the imposition of the death penalty and
also killing Aquilino. There is no question that the group moved in concert, has not, by reducing it to reclusion perpetua, also correspondingly reduced
pursuing a common design previously agreed upon, that made each of the remaining penalties. These should be maintained intact.
them part of a conspiracy. 35 As such, each of them is liable in equal A reading of Section 19(l) of Article III will readily show that there is really
degree with the others for each of the three killings. Each member of the nothing therein which expressly declares the abolition of the death
conspiracy to commit the crime of murder is guilty as a co-principal, penalty. The provision merely says that the death penalty shall not be
regardless of who actually pulled the trigger that killed the three victims. It imposed unless for compelling reasons involving heinous crimes the
is settled that in a conspiracy the act of one is the act of all. Congress hereafter provides for it and, if already imposed, shall be
reduced to reclusion perpetua. The language, while rather awkward, is still
ISSUE: In line with the prohibition of the imposition of death penalty, the plain enough. And it is a settled rule of legal hermeneutics that if the
issue now is the determination of the proper penalty for murder language under consideration is plain, it is neither necessary nor
permissible to resort to extrinsic aids, like the records of the constitutional
Conformably, the Court has since February 2, 1987 not imposed the death convention, for its interpretation. Xxxx
penalty whenever it was called for under the said article but instead
reduced the same to reclusion perpetua as mandated by the above The Court relies that this interpretation may lead to certain inequities that
provision. The maximum period of the penalty was thus in effect lowered would not have arisen under Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code before
to the medium, the same period applied, as before, where the offense was its modification. Thus, a person originally subject to the death penalty and
not attended by any modifying circumstance, with the minimum period, i. another who committed the murder without the attendance of any
e., reclusion temporal maximum, being still applicable in all other cases. modifying circumstance will now be both punishable with the same
The three-grade scheme of the original penalty, including death, was thus medium period although the former is concededly more guilty than the
maintained except that the maximum period was not imposed because of latter. True enough. But that is the will not of this Court but of the
the constitutional prohibition. Constitution. That is a question of wisdom, not construction. Of some
relevance perhaps is the parable in the Bible of the workman who was
paid the stipulated daily wage of one penny although he had worked
H: A reading of Section 19(l) of Article III will readily show that there is longer than others hired later in the day also paid the same amount. When
really nothing therein which expressly declares the abolition of the death he complained because he felt unjustly treated by the householder, the
penalty. The provision merely says that the death penalty shall not be latter replied: "Friend, I do you no wrong. Did you not agree with me for a
imposed unless for compelling reasons involving heinous crimes the penny?'
Congress hereafter provides for it and, if already imposed, shall be
reduced to reclusion perpetua. The language, while rather awkward, is still The problem in any event is addressed not to this Court but to the
plain enough. And it is a settled rule of legal hermeneutics that if the Congress. Penalties are prescribed by statute and are essentially and
language under consideration is plain, it is neither necessary nor exclusively legislative. As judges, we can only interpret and apply them and
permissible to resort to extrinsic aids, like the records of the constitutional have no authority to modify them or revise their range as determined
convention, for its interpretation. exclusively by the legislature. We should not encroach on this prerogative
of the lawmaking body.
Each of the three killings constituted the crime of murder, qualified
by alevosia. There was treachery because every one of the three victims Coming back to the case at bar, we find that there being no generic
was completely helpless and defenseless when shot and killed by the aggravating or mitigating circumstance attending the commission of the
accused with no risk to themselves. Mauro was completely taken by offenses, the applicable sentence is the medium period of the penalty
surprise when he was shot in the face. Alejandro was lying down when he prescribed by Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code which, conformably to
was shot in the head. Aquilino was seated when he was shot in the head the new doctrine here adopted and announced, is still reclusion perpetua.
and shoulders. None of the three victims had a chance to resist. This is the penalty we impose on all the accused-appellants for each of the
three murders they have committed in conspiracy with the others. The
The penalty for murder under Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code award of civil indemnity for the heirs of each of the victims is affirmed but
was reclusion temporal in its maximum period to death, but this was the amount thereof is hereby increased to P30,000.00 in line with the
modified by Article III, Section 19(l) of the 1987 Constitution providing as present policy.
PP vs BON (2006)
Excessive fines shall not be imposed, nor cruel, degrading or inhuman
punishment inflicted Neither shall death penalty be imposed, unless, for DOCTRINE: The exclusion of Death Penalty from the Graduation of Criminal
compelling reasons involving heinous crimes, the Congress hereafter Penalties.
provides for it. Any death penalty already imposed shall be reduced
to reclusion perpetua. F: Alfredo Ban was charged for the crime of rape of his two nieces, AAA
and BBB (the daughters of his older brother) The rapes were allegedly
In People v. Gavarra 37 Justice Pedro L. Yap declared for the Court that "in have been committed for several instances in the span of six (6) years.
view of the abolition of the death penalty under Section 19, Article III of
the 1987 Constitution, the penalty that may be imposed for murder Trial Court convicted Alfredo Bon guilty for eight counts of rape. It further
isreclusion temporal in its maximum period to reclusion perpetua" thereby considered the qualifying circumstances of minority of the victims and the
eliminating death as the original maximum period. Later, without relationship.
categorically saying so, the Court, through Justice Ameurfina Melencio-
Herrera in People v. Masangkay 38 and through Justice Andres R. Narvasa CA: upheld the conviction of the 6 counts while downgraded the two
in People v. Atencio 39 divided the modified penalty into three new periods, counts for attempted rape. It imposed an indeterminate penalty of 10
the limits of which were specified by Justice Edgardo L. Paras in People v. years of prision mayor as minimum to 17 years and 4 mos of reclusion
Intino, 40 as follows: the lower half of reclusion temporal maximum as the temporal as maximum
minimum; the upper half of reclusion temporal maximum as the medium;
and reclusion perpetua as the maximum. ISSUE: The issue in the case at bar is the proper imposition of the
attempted rape – that is whether the penalty for the attempted qualified
The Court has reconsidered the above cases and, after extended rape should be computed from death or from reclusion perpetua
discussion, come to the conclusion that the doctrine announced therein
does not reflect the intention of the framers as embodied in Article III,
Section 19(l) of the Constitution. This conclusion is not unanimous, to be H: The sentence of death imposed by the RTC and affirmed by the Court of
sure. Indeed, there is much to be said of the opposite view, which was in Appeals can no longer be affirmed in view of Rep. Act No. 9346, titled "An
fact shared by many of those now voting for its reversal. The majority of Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty in the Philippines." Section
the Court, however, is of the belief that the original interpretation should 2 of the law mandates that in lieu of the death penalty, the penalty
be restored as the more acceptable reading of the constitutional provision of reclusion perpetua shall be imposed. Correspondingly, the Court can no
in question. longer uphold the death sentences imposed by lower courts, but must, if
the guilt of the accused is affirmed, impose instead the penalty
The advocates of the Masangkay ruling argue that the Constitution of reclusion perpetua, or life imprisonment when appropriate.
abolished the death penalty and thereby limited the penalty for murder to
the remaining periods, to wit, the minimum and the medium. These should

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Following the scale prescribed in Article 71, the penalty two degrees lower for which the imposable penalty was death alone. Thus, our ruling will bear
than death is reclusion temporal, which was the maximum penalty no direct effect on the sentencing of accomplices and accessories or
imposed by the Court of Appeals on appellant for attempted rape. persons guilty of the attempted or frustrated stage of felonies for which
Reclusion temporal is a penalty comprised of three divisible periods, a the imposable penalty was "reclusion perpetua to death."
minimum, a medium and a maximum. Hence, it should be understood that any reference forthwith to the penalty
of death does not refer to the penalty of "reclusion perpetua to death."
Hence, the Court of Appeals sentenced appellant to suffer the penalty for
attempted rape, with a maximum penalty within the range of reclusion If there was a clear intent in Rep. Act No. 9346 to downgrade the penalties
temporal, and a minimum penalty within the range of the penalty next for convicts whose sentences had been graduated beginning from death
lower, or prision mayor. If Rep. Act No. 9346 had not been enacted, the pursuant to Article 71, the Court would not hesitate to enforce such
Court would have affirmed such sentence without complication. However, downgrading based on clear statutory intent. However, nothing in Rep. Act
the enactment of the law has given rise to the problem concerning the No. 9346 expressly refers to those penalties imposed on frustrated or
imposable penalty. Appellant was sentenced to a maximum term attempted felonies, or on accessories and accomplices.
within reclusion temporal since that is the penalty two degrees lower than
death. With the elimination of death as a penalty, does it follow that Section 1 of Rep. Act No. 9346 bears examination:
appellant should now be sentenced to a penalty two degrees lower
than reclusion perpetua, the highest remaining penalty with the Section 1. The imposition of the penalty of death is hereby prohibited.
enactment of Rep. Act No. 9346? Accordingly, Republic Act No. Eight Thousand One Hundred Seventy-Seven
(R.A. No. 8177), xxxxx otherwise known as the Death Penalty Law, and all
YES. The reckoning point shall not be death but reclusion perpetua. other laws, executive orders and decrees, insofar as they impose the
Hence, the proper penalty from reclusion perpetua is prision mayor. death penalty are hereby repealed or amended accordingly.

Following the scale prescribed in Article 71, the penalty two degrees lower Section 1 specifically repeals all laws, executive orders and decrees
than death is reclusion temporal, which was the maximum penalty insofar as they impose the death penalty, and not merely such enactments
imposed by the Court of Appeals on appellant for attempted rape. which are inconsistent with Rep. Act No. 9346.
Reclusion temporal is a penalty comprised of three divisible periods, a
minimum, a medium and a maximum. Section 1 arguably presents more problems in that regard with its
utilization of the particular phrase "insofar as they impose the death
Hence, the Court of Appeals sentenced appellant to suffer the penalty for penalty." We can entertain two schools of thought in construing this
attempted rape, with a maximum penalty within the range of reclusion provision, both of them rooted in literalist interpretations. First, it can be
temporal, and a minimum penalty within the range of the penalty next claimed that the present application of the penalties for attempted rape of
lower, or prision mayor. If Rep. Act No. 9346 had not been enacted, the a minor (among many examples) does not "impose the death penalty,"
Court would have affirmed such sentence without complication. However, since none of the convicts concerned would face execution through the
the enactment of the law has given rise to the problem concerning the application of the penalty for attempted rape. Hence, the statutory
imposable penalty. Appellant was sentenced to a maximum term provisions enforced in determining the penalty for attempted rape, or
within reclusion temporal since that is the penalty two degrees lower than other crimes not punishable by death, are not amended by Rep. Act No.
death. With the elimination of death as a penalty, does it follow that 9346.
appellant should now be sentenced to a penalty two degrees lower
than reclusion perpetua, the highest remaining penalty with the On the other hand, the operation of the provisions imposing the penalty for
enactment of Rep. Act No. 9346? If it so followed, appellant would be attempted rape of a minor necessarily calls for the application, if not its
sentenced to prision mayor in lieu of reclusion temporal. xxxx literal imposition, of death as a penalty, in the context of applying the
graduated scale of penalties under Article 71 of the Revised Penal Code. If
Under Article 51 of the Revised Penal Code, the penalty for an attempted we were to construe "impose" as to mean "apply," then it could be argued
felony is the "penalty lower by two degrees than that prescribed by law for that Article 71 was indeed amended by Rep. Act No. 9346. After all, the
the consummated felony." In this case, the penalty for the rape if it had application of Article 71 to crimes such as attempted rape of a minor call
been consummated would have been death, pursuant to Article 335 of the for the actual operation of the death penalty not only in theory, but as a
Revised Penal Code, as amended by R.A. No. 7659, since [RT 69] was eight means of determining the proper graduated penalty.
years old and TOLENTINO was the common-law spouse of [RT's] mother.
xxxx On face value, the attractive worth of the firstly offered line of thinking is
enhanced by its innate conservatism, limiting as it would the effects of
This dichotomy results from the application of Article 61 of the Revised Rep. Act No. 9346. It also can be understood if confronted with the option
Penal Code. Both reclusion perpetua and death are indivisible penalties. of employing either a liberal or a conservative construction, there is a
Under Article 61 (2) of the Revised Penal Code, "[w]hen the penalty natural tendency to employ the conservative mode. Further, the reasoning
prescribed for the crime is composed of two indivisible penalties … the is seemingly consistent with that employed by the Court in People v.
penalty next lower in degree shall be that immediately following the lesser Muñoz. (SC analyzed Munoz ruling in the latter part of the decision)
of the penalties prescribed in the respective graduated scale." Hence, in
passing sentence on those convicted of attempted felonies which The inability of Congress to shape the repealing clause in so specific a
warranted the penalty of "reclusion perpetua to death" if consummated, fashion does leave open the question whether Congress did actually
the Court has consistently held that penalty two degrees lower than intend to limit the operation of Rep. Act No. 9346 to actual executions
"reclusion perpetua to death" is prision mayor. In contrast, if the penalty only. But let us for now test that premise by assuming for the nonce that
for the consummated crime is the single indivisible penalty of death, as the legislative intent of Rep. Act No. 9346 was to limit the prohibition of
was prescribed for several crimes under Rep. Act No. 7659, Article 61(1) the law to the physical imposition of the death penalty, without extending
of the Revised Penal Code provides that "the penalty prescribed for the any effect to the graduated scale of penalties under Article 71 of the
felony is single and indivisible, the penalty next lower in degree shall be Revised Penal Code.
that immediately following that indivisible penalty in the respective
graduated scale prescribed in Article 71". Thus, the proper penalty two There are troubling results if we were to uphold, based on legislative
degrees lower than death is reclusion temporal. intent, the interpretation of Rep. Act No. 9346 that limits its effects only to
matters relating to the physical imposition of the death penalty. (NOTE
It is also for this reason that the controversy we are now addressing did THESE ILLUSTRATIONS)
not similarly arise after the enactment of the 1987 Constitution, which
prohibits the imposition of the death penalty subject to its subsequent Illustrations are necessary. The easy demonstration of iniquitous results is
readoption at the choice of Congress. Generally, the highest penalty in the case of accomplices. Under Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code,
imposed under the Revised Penal Code was "reclusion perpetua to death," as amended, kidnapping for ransom was punishable by death. Let us say X
a penalty composed of two indivisible penalties. As a result, the Court had and Y were tried for the crime. X was charged as a principal for having
no occasion, after the passage of the 1987 Constitution, to consider the directly participated in the kidnapping. Y was charged as an accomplice for
effect of the charter on penalties downgraded from a single indivisible having allowed X to use his house to detain the victim, even though Y was
penalty. It was under Rep. Act No. 7659, passed in 1993, that some abroad at the time of the crime and otherwise had no other participation
commonly occurring crimes, such as qualified rape and kidnapping for therein. Both X and Y were convicted by final judgment. Since X could no
ransom, were penalized with the single indivisible penalty of death. longer be meted the death penalty, he is sentenced instead to reclusion
perpetua. Ordinarily, Y as an accomplice should receive the penalty next
The discussion for purposes of this decision will only center on crimes, lower in degree, or reclusion temporal. Yet following the "conservative"
such as qualified rape as defined in the Revised Penal Code, as amended, interpretation of Rep. Act No. 9346, the graduation of penalties remains

BVTC | Criminal Law Review 5

unaffected with the enactment of the new law. Thus, under Article 71, PP vs SARCIA (2009)
which would still take into account the death penalty within the graduated
scale, Y, as an accomplice, would be sentenced to reclusion perpetua, the Notes:
same penalty as the principal.  The justification for imposition of death penalty is social
defense and exemplarity;
The implementation of Rep. Act No. 9346 in a way that leaves extant the  Death penalty is not cruel and unusual – cruel punishment
penalties for accomplices, accessories, frustrated and attempted felonies, applies something inhuman and barbarous, something more
clearly results in illogical, iniquitous and inconsistent effects. In contrast, than mere extinguishment of life
no similar flaws ensue should we construe Rep. Act No. 9346 instead as
not having barred the application of the death penalty even as a means of Destierro – means banishment or only a prohibition from residing within a
depreciating penalties other than death. In particular, the operative radius of 25-kms from the actual residence of the accused for a specified
amendment that would assure the integrity of penalties for accomplices, length of time.
accessories, frustrated and attempted felonies lies in Article 71, which
ranks "death" at the top of the scale for graduated penalties. Q: If the offender enters within the prohibited places, what crime does he
Simply put, the negation of the word "death" as previously inscribed in A: He commits the crime of evasion of service of sentence under Article
Article 71 will have the effect of appropriately downgrading the proper 157.
penalties attaching to accomplices, accessories, frustrated and attempted
felonies to the level consistent with the rest of our penal laws. Returning to Under the Revised Penal Code, destierro is the penalty imposed in the
our previous examples, Y, the convicted accomplice in kidnapping for following situations:
ransom, would now bear the penalty of reclusion temporal, the penalty
one degree lower than that the principal X would bear (reclusion (1) When a legally married person who had surprised his or her
perpetua). Such sentence would be consistent with Article 52 of the spouse in the act of sexual intercourse with another and while
Revised Penal Code, as well as Article 71, as amended, to remove the in that act or immediately thereafter should kill or inflict serious
reference to "death." Moreover, the prospect of the accomplice receiving physical injuries upon the other spouse, and/or the paramour
the same sentence as the principal, an anomalous notion within our penal or mistress. (Art 247)
laws, would be eliminated. Thus, the same standard would prevail in (2) In the crime of grave threat or light threat, when the offender is
sentencing principals and accomplices to the crime of kidnapping in required to put up a bond for good behavior but failed or
ransom, as that prescribed to the crime of simple kidnapping. refused to do so under Article 284, such convict shall be
sentenced to destierro so that he would not be able to carry out
The harmonization that would result if Rep. Act No. 9346 were construed his threat.
as having eliminated the reference to "death" in Article 71 would run (3) In the crime of concubinage, the penalty prescribed for the
across the board in our penal laws. Consistent with Article 51 of the concubine is destierro under Article 334.
Revised Penal Code, those convicted of attempted qualified rape would (4) Where the penalty prescribed by law is arresto mayor, but the
receive the penalty two degrees lower than that prescribed by law, now offender is entitled privileged mitigating circumstance and
Rep. Act No. 9346, for qualified rape. lowering the prescribed penalty by one degree, the penalty one
degree lower is destierro. Thus, it shall be the one imposed.

It would be disingenuous to consider Muñoz as directly settling the

question now befacing us, as the legal premises behind Muñoz are Civil interdiction – is one of the restrictions on capacity to act but does not
different from those in this case. Most pertinently, Muñoz inquired into the exempt the offender from certain obligations, as when the latter arise from
effects of the Constitution on the proper penalty for murder; while herein, his act or from property relations. It covers deprivation of:
we are ascertaining the effects of Rep. Act No. 9346 on the proper penalty i. parental authority;
for attempted qualified rape.. Muñoz may have pronounced that the ii. guardianship as to the person or property of any ward;
Constitution did not abolish the death penalty, but that issue no longer iii. marital authority;
falls into consideration herein, the correct query now being whether iv. to manage his property;
Congress has banned the death penalty through Rep. Act No. 9346. v. to dispose of such property by any act or conveyance inter
Otherwise framed, Muñoz does not preclude the Court from concluding vivos;
that with the express prohibition of the imposition of the death penalty  hence, a convict may prepare his last will and
Congress has unequivocally banned the same. testament since what wad prohibited is disposition
by an act inter vivos;
The doctrine in Muñoz that the constitutional prohibition on the imposition
of the death penalty did not enact a corresponding modification of other Q:What are the pecuniary liabilities of the offender? How are they to be
penalties is similarly irrelevant to this case, which calls for an examination paid?
as to whether such corresponding modifications of other penalties arose A: The pecuniary liabilities of the offender are those owing to the offended:
as a consequence of Rep. Act No. 9346, and not the Constitution. reparation of the damage caused and indemnification of consequential
damages and those owing to the government (fine and costs of
For purposes of legal hermeneutics, the critical question is whether Rep. proceedings)
Act No. 9346 intended to delete the word "death" as expressly provided for
in the graduated scale of penalties under Article 71. Muñoz did not engage They are to be settled in order (if the mans of the convict are not enough
in an analogous inquiry in relation to Article 71 and the Constitution, for to settle them all), as follows:
what was relevant therein was not the general graduated scale of (1) reparation;
penalties, but the range of the penalties for murder. Herein, at bare (2) indemnification;
minimum, no provision in Rep. Act No. 9346 provides a context within (3) fine;
which the concept of "death penalty" bears retentive legal effect,  fine is subject to subsidiary penalty in the proper
especially in relation to Article 71. Unlike the Constitution, Rep. Act No. cases
9346 does expressly stipulate the amendment of all extant laws insofar as (4) costs of proceedings
they called for the imposition of the penalty of death.
Subsidiary penalty – If the convict has no property with which to meet the
It should be understood that the debarring of the death penalty through fine, he shall be subject to a subsidiary personal liability; It is the penalty
Rep. Act No. 9346 did not correspondingly declassify those crimes that takes place of the fine for insolvent convicts.
previously catalogued as "heinous". The amendatory effects of Rep. Act  Considered as a substitute penalty for fine only;
No. 9346 extend only to the application of the death penalty but not to the  It may be in the form of imprisonment or deprivation of right
definition or classification of crimes. True, the penalties for heinous crimes depending upon the principal penalty imposed;
have been downgraded under the aegis of the new law. Still, what remains  It is imposable whether the violation is under RPC or special
extant is the recognition by law that such crimes, by their abhorrent laws;
nature, constitute a special category by themselves. Accordingly, Rep. Act  The court must expressly state that subsidiary penalty shall be
No. 9346 does not serve as basis for the reduction of civil indemnity and served in case of insolvency, because this is not an accessory
other damages that adhere to heinous crimes. penalty that follows the principal penalty as a matter of course;

BAR QUESTION: The penalty imposed by the judge is fine only. The sheriff
then tried to levy the property of the defendant after it has become final

BVTC | Criminal Law Review 6

and executory, but it was returned unsatisfied. The court then issued an jurisdiction, the court of higher jurisdiction shall try the complex
order for said convict to suffer subsidiary penalty. The convict was crime;
detained, for which reason he filed a petition for habeas corpus  Art 48 does not apply when the law provides one single penalty
contending that his detention is illegal. Will the petition prosper? for special complex crimes (e.g robbery with homicide, robbery
with rape, kidnapping with serious physical injuries or rape with
A: Yes. The judgment became final without statement as to subsidiary homicide)
penalty, so that even if the convict has no money or property to satisfy the
fine, he cannot suffer subsidiary penalty because the latter is not an Two kinds of complex crimes
accessory and so it must be expressly stated. If the court overlooked to
provide for subsidiary penalty in the sentence and its attention was later 1. Compound proper – when a single act constitutes two or more
called to that effect, thereafter, it tried to modify the sentence to include grave or less grave felonies;
subsidiary penalty after period to appeal had already elapsed, the addition 2. Complex crime proper – when an offense is a necessary means
of subsidiary penalty will be null and void. This is tantamount to double for committing the other;

If the fine is prescribed with the penalty of imprisonment or any

deprivation of liberty, such imprisonment should not be higher than six Compound Proper Complex Crime Proper
years or prision correccional. Otherwise, there is no subsidiary penalty. Reqs: Reqs:
i. that only a single act is i. that at least two offenses
performed by the offender; are committed;
ii. that the single act produces ii. that one or some of the
Section Three – Penalties in which Other Accessory Penalties are Inherent (1) two or more grave felonies offenses must be necessary
Art 40-45 or (2) one or more grave and to commit the other;
one or more less grave iii. that both or all the offenses
 Accessory penalties need not be expressed in the court’s felonies or (3) two or more must be punished under the
decision for they are ipso facto imposed with the principal less grave felonies same statute;
penalties to which these accessory penalties are attached.

Outline of accessory penalties inherent in principal penalties: Illustrations of “when a single act constitutes two or more grave or less
i. death, when not executed by reason of commutation or pardon – grave felonies”
(1) perpetual absolute disqualification and (2) civil interdiction for  The single act of throwing a grenade producing murder and multiple
30 years, if not expressly remitted in the pardon; attempted murders is considered a complex crime. (Pp vs Guillen)
ii. reclusion perpetua and reclusion temporal – (1) civil interdiction for  Several shots from submachine gun causing several deaths, caused
life or during the sentence and (2) perpetual absolute by a single act of pressing the trigger, is considered a complex crime.
disqualification, unless expressly remitted in the pardon of the  When in obedience to an order, several accused simultaneously shot
principal penalty many person without evidence how many each killed. There is only a
iii. prision mayor – (1) temporary absolute disqualification and (2) single offense, that if the act or acts complained of resulted from a
perpetual special disqualification from the suffrage, unless single criminal impulse, it constitutes a single offense. (Pp vs Lawas)
expressly remitted in the pardon of the principal penalty Note: The ruling in Lawas case applies only when there is no
iv. prision coreccional – (1) suspension from public office, profession evidence at all to show the number of persons killed by each of
or calling and (2) perpetual special disqualification from suffrage, if several defendants.
the duration of imprisonment exceeds 18 mos, unless expressly  There is no complex crime of arson with homicide (absorbed by the
remitted in the pardon of the principal penalty former);
v. arresto – suspension of the right to hold office and the right of  Complex crimes also applies in quasi-offenses (Relate Art 48 to the
suffrage during the term of sentence definition of a felony);
 Theft of firearm and illegal possession of the same fire arm do not
APPLICATION OF PENALTIES form complex crime – they are two distinct crimes.

Section One – Rules for the application of penalties to the persons Illustrations of “when an offense is a necessary means for committing the
criminally liable and for the graduation of the same other”
Art 46-51  NOTE: there should at least be two offenses committed; For e.g
Falsification of a public document by an accountable officer (by
PLURALITY OF CRIMES erasing the names originally written thereon) is a necessary
Definition – consists in the successive execution by the same individual of means to commit the crime of malversation
different criminal acts upon any of which no conviction has yet been  Simple seduction by means of usurpation of public functions.
declared; (Us vs Hernandez);
 Abduction as a necessary means for committing the crime of
Formal or ideal plurality Real or material plurality rape;
Complex Crimes A stabbed B. Then A also stabbed
Special Complex Crimes C. (Note: there are two acts Q: What are cases where commission of two crimes will not result to
Continued Crimes performed) complex crime?
Transitory Crimes 1. when in the definition of one offense is a means to commit the
other, there is no complex crime (for e.g in murder where the
killing was committed by means of fire which in themselves are
COMPLEX CRIMES felonies under Art 321 and 324);
2. there is no complex crime when one offense is committed to
Article 48. Penalty for complex crimes. - When a single act constitutes two conceal the other;
or more grave or less grave felonies, or when an offense is a necessary 3. there is no complex crime where one of the offense is penalized
means for committing the other, the penalty for the most serious crime by special law;
shall be imposed, the same to be applied in its maximum period. 4. there is no complex crime of rebellion, murder, arson, robbery
or other common crimes (Enrile vs Salazar);
Art 48 requires the commission of at least 2 crimes: 2 or more grave or
less grave felonies must be the result of a single act OR an offense must NAPOLIS vs CA (1972)
be necessary means for committing the other.
F: About 1am in Bataan, accused forcibly entered the dwelling of Sps
A complex crime is only ONE crime. (Evil intent of the offender here is only Penaflor for the purpose of robbery and once inside, assaulted Ignacio
one) Always remember that in Complex Crime, there is only a SINGLE Peñaflor with the handle of the Grease Gun causing him to fall on the
ACT!!!) ground and rendering him unconscious, tied his hands and feet. Accused
 One information shall be filed when a complex crime is also approached Casimira L. Peñaflor and threatened her at gun point and
committed; demanded money.
 When two crimes produced by a single act are respectively
within the exclusive jurisdiction of two courts of different CRIME: Robbery in band
BVTC | Criminal Law Review 7
Multiple Murder and Attempted Murder committed by brothers Toling.
It should be noted that the Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the
trial court convicting Napolis, Malana and Satimbre of the crime of robbery Defense of Toling brothers – four men were trying to rob their money.
committed by armed persons, in an inhabited house, entry therein having
been made by breaking a wall, as provided in Article 299 (a) of the H: NOT A COMPLEX CRIME. The twins are liable for eight (8) murders and
Revised Penal Code, and, accordingly, sentencing Napolis and Satimbre to one attempted murder. Apparently, because there was no doubt on the
an indeterminate penalty ranging from ten (10) years and one (1) day of twins' culpability, since they were caught in flagrante delicto the CIS
prision mayor, as minimum, to seventeen (17) years, four (4) months and investigators did not bother to get the statements of the other passengers
one (1) day of reclusion temporal, as maximum, which is in accordance in Coach No. 9. It is probable that no one actually saw the acts of the twins
with said legal provision. from beginning to end because everyone in Coach No. 9 was trying to
leave it in order to save his life. The ensuing commotion and confusion
In addition, however, to performing said acts, the malefactors had, also, prevented the passengers from having a full personal knowledge of how
used violence against Ignacio Peñaflor , and intimidation against his wife, the twins consummated all the killings.
thereby infringing Article 294 of the same Code, under conditions falling
under sub-paragraph (5) of said article, which prescribes the penalty of The eight killings and the attempted killing should be treated as separate
prision correccional in its maximum period to prision mayor in its medium crimes of murder and attempted murder qualified be treachery (alevosia)
period, which is lighter than that prescribed in said Article 299, although, (Art. 14[16], Revised Penal Code). The unexpected, surprise assaults
factually, the crime committed is more serious than that covered by the perpetrated by the twins upon their co-passengers, who did not anticipate
latter provision. This Court had previously ruled — . that the twins would act likejuramentados and who were unable to defend
themselves (even if some of them might have had weapons on their
... that where robbery, though committed in an inhabited house, is persons) was a mode of execution that insured the consummation of the
characterized by intimidation, this factor "supplies the controlling twins' diabolical objective to butcher their co-passengers. The conduct of
qualification," so that the law to apply is article 294 and not article 299 of the twins evinced conspiracy and community of design.
the Revised Penal Code. This is on the theory that "robbery which is
characterized by violence or intimidation against the person is evidently
graver than ordinary robbery committed by force upon things, because The eight killings and the attempted murder were perpetrated by means of
where violence or intimidation against the person is present there is different acts. Hence, they cannot be regarded as constituting a complex
greater disturbance of the order of society and the security of the crime under article 48 of the Revised Penal Code which refers to cases
individual." (U.S. vs. Turla, 38 Phil. 346; People vs. Baluyot, 40 Phil. 89.) where "a single act constitutes two or more grave felonies, or when an
And this view is followed even where, as in the present case, the penalty offense is a necessary means for committing the other".
to be applied under article 294 is lighter than that which would result from
the application of article 299. ... . 3
Re: When one offense is a necessary means to commit another
PP vs SALVILLA (1990)
deliberation, We find ourselves unable to share the foregoing view. Indeed, F: This involves a robbery in a lumber yard. Two daughters of the owner of
one who, by breaking a wall, enters, with a deadly weapon, an inhabited the lumber yard were held as hostages. Accused did not budge despite the
house and steals therefrom valuable effects, without violence against or plea of the authorities and law enforcers. Finally, the police and military
intimidation upon persons, is punishable under Art. 299 of the Revised authorities decided to launch an offensive and assault the place. This
Penal Code with reclusion temporal.4 Pursuant to the above view, adhered resulted in injuries to the girls, Mimie and Mary Choco as well as to the
to in previous decision,5 if, aside from performing said acts, the thief lays accused Ronaldo and Reynaldo Canasares. Mary suffered a "macerated
hand upon any person, without committing any of the crimes or inflicting right lower extremity just below the knee" so that her right leg had to be
any of the injuries mentioned in subparagraphs (1) to (4) of Art. 294 of the amputated.
same Code, the imposable penalty -- under paragraph (5) thereof -- shall
be much lighter.6 To our mind, this result and the process of reasoning
that has brought it about, defy logic and reason. Appellant and his co-accused were charged in the Information with
"Robbery with Serious Physical Injuries and Serious Illegal Detention ("Art.
295, par. 3, in conjunction with Art. 267, RPC )and sentenced to reclusion
The argument to the effect that the violence against or intimidation of a perpetua.
person supplies the "controlling qualification," is far from sufficient to
justify said result. We agree with the proposition that robbery with
"violence or intimidation against the person is evidently graver than H: In contrast, the detention in the case at bar was not only incidental to
ordinary robbery committed by force upon things," but, precisely, for this the robbery but was a necessary means to commit the same After the
reason, We cannot accept the conclusion deduced therefrom in the cases amount of P20,000.00 was handed to Appellant, the latter and his co-
above cited —reduction of the penalty for the latter offense owing to the accused still refused to leave. The victims were then taken as hostages
concurrence of violence or intimidation which made it amore serious one. and the demand to produce an additional P100,000.00 was made as a
It is, to our mind, more plausible to believe that Art. 294 applies only prerequisite for their release. The detention was not because the accused
where robbery with violence against or intimidation of person takes were trapped by the police nor were the victims held as security against
place without entering an inhabited house, under the conditions set forth the latter. The detention was not merely a matter of restraint to enable the
in Art. 299 of the Revised Penal Code. malefactors to escape, but deliberate as a means of extortion for an
additional amount. The police and other authorities arrived only much later
after several hours of detention had already passed. And, despite appeals
We deem it more logical and reasonable to hold, as We do, when the to appellant and his co-accused to surrender, they adamantly refused until
elements of both provisions are present, that the crime is a complex one, the amount of P100,000.00 they demanded could be turned over to them.
calling for the imposition -- as provided in Art. 48 of said Code -- of the They even considered P50,000.00, the amount being handed to them, as
penalty for the most serious offense, in its maximum period, which, in the inadequate.
case at bar, is reclusion temporal in its maximum period. This penalty
should, in turn, be imposed in its maximum period -- from nineteen (19)
years, one (1) month and eleven (11) days to twenty (20) years We agree with the Trial Court that a complex crime under Article 48 of the
of reclusion temporal — owing to the presence of the aggravating Revised Penal Code has been committed such that the penalty for the
circumstances of nighttime more serious offense of Serious Illegal Detention (Art. 267, Revised Penal
Code), or "reclusion perpetua to death," is to be imposed instead of the
penalty prescribed for Robbery with Serious Physical Injuries (Art. 294 (3),
PP vs TOLING (1975) which is reclusion temporal.
F: Antonio Toling and Jose Toling are twin brothers hailed from Samar.
They went to Manila to visit Antonio’s daughter on the assurance that his Under Article 48, a complex crime arises "when an offense is a necessary
daughter will give him money. But they didn’t find the daughter. En route means for committing the other." The term "necessary means" does not
to going home, they ride on a train. When the train started, the two connote indispensable means for if it did then the offense as a "necessary
brothers killed the people inside the train by stabbing them with a knife means" to commit another would be an indispensable element of the
and scissors – a total of twelve. latter and would be an ingredient thereof. The phrase "necessary means"
merely signifies that one crime is committed to facilitate and insure the

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commission of the other (Aquino, Revised Penal Code, Vol. I, 1987 ed., p. The Court however, finds compelling reasons to reduce the sentence from
624, citing Dissent, Montemayor, J., Amado Hernandez, 99 Phil. 515). one death penalty (for the complex crime of multiple murder with double
frustrated murder) and one reclusion perpetua (for the complex crime of
COMPLEX CRIME. In this case, the crime of Serious Illegal Detention was illegal possession of firearms and ammunitions) to four counts
such a "necessary means" as it was selected by Appellant and his co- of reclusion perpetua (for 4 murders) and two indeterminate sentences
accused to facilitate and carry out more effectively their evil design to of prision mayor to reclusion temporal (for the 2 frustrated murders).
stage a robbery.
The recommendation of the Solicitor General in the Peoples brief that
accused-appellant should instead be convicted of four counts of murder
PP vs ASTOR PP vs SALVILLA and two counts of frustrated murder is well taken.The trial court erred
In Astor, there were two (2) In the present case, only one when it allowed itself to be carried away by the erroneous Information filed
separate Informations filed, one for Information was filed charging the by the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor of Pangasinan charging the
Robbery and another for Serious complex offense. complex crime of multiple murder and double frustrated murder (p. 1,
Illegal Detention. Record: Crim. Case No. U-8747). It may be noted that in his Resolution
Not so in this case, where the dated September 26, 1995, the investigating municipal trial court judge of
In Astor, the robbery had already detention was availed of as a Manaoag, Pangasinan, found a prima facie case for four separate counts
been consummated and the means of insuring the of murder (pp. 101- 102, Ibid.) Too, the same investigating judge in his
detention was merely to forestall consummation of the robbery. Resolution dated October 31, 1995 found a prima facie case for two
the capture of the robbers by the counts of frustrated murder (pp. 43-44, Ibid.). It was upon reinvestigation
police. by the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor of Pangasinan that a case for the
complex crime of murder with double frustrated murder was instead filed
In Astor, the detention was only per its Joint Resolution dated November 17, 1995 (pp. 4-6, Ibid.).
incidental to the main crime of
The concept of a complex crime is defined in Article 48 of the Revised
Penal Code, to wit:

In other words, unlike in the cases 4 distinguished by the Supreme Court, ART. 48. Penalty for complex crimes When a single act constitutes two or
the elements of the offense of Serious Illegal Detention are present in this more grave or less grave felonies or when an offense is a necessary
case. The victims were illegally deprived of their liberty. Two females (Mary means for committing the other, the penalty for the most serious crime
and Minnie) and a minor (Minnie), a specified circumstance in Article 267 shall be imposed, the same to be applied in its maximum period. (As
(3), were among those detained. The continuing detention was also for the amended by Act No. 4000.)
purpose of extorting ransom, another listed circumstance in Article 267
(last parag.) not only from the detained persons themselves but even from
the authorities who arrived to rescue them. It follows then that as the The case at bar does not fall under any of the two instances defined
detention in this case was not merely incidental to the robbery but a above. The Office of the Provincial Prosecutor of Pangasinan erroneously
necessary means employed to facilitate it, the penalty imposed by the Trial considered the case as falling under the first. It is clear from the evidence
Court is proper. on record, however, that the four crimes of murder resulted not from a
single act but from several individual and distinct acts. For one thing, the
evidence indicates that there was more than one gunman involved, and
PP vs SANIDAD (2003) the act of each gunman is distinct from that of the other. It cannot be said
therefore, that there is but a single act of firing a single firearm. There
Crime: Complex crime of Multiple Murder with double Frustrated Murder, were also several empty bullet shells recovered from the scene of the
and likewise separately sentencing him to suffer the prison term crime. This confirms the fact that several shots were fired. Furthermore,
of reclusion perpetua for the crime of Illegal Possession of Firearms and considering the relative positions of the gunmen and their victims, some of
Ammunitions. whom were riding the motorized tricycle itself while the others were seated
inside the sidecar thereof, it was absolutely impossible for the four victims
to have been hit and killed by a single bullet. Each act by each gunman
F: The victims while en route to a wedding party, rode in the tricycle driven pulling the trigger of their respective firearms, aiming each particular
by Ramon Garcia going to Cabaoangan. Behind Garcia were Tibule and moment at different persons constitute distinct and individual acts which
Willie. Jean was seated inside the side car with Sandra and William cannot give rise to the complex crime of multiple murder. We therefore
Montano. After making a turn along the barangay road leading to Sitio rule that accused-appellant is guilty, not of a complex crime of multiple
Cabaoangan, they met accused Rolando Valdez and his companions who murder, but of four counts of murder for the death of the four victims in
were armed with guns. The tricycles headlight flashed on their this case. In the same manner, accused-appellant is likewise held guilty
faces. Without warning, they pointed their guns and fired at Montanos for two counts of frustrated murder.
group. Thereafter, after uttering the words, nataydan, mapan tayon (They
are already dead. Let us go), Valdez and companions left. The shooting Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended, provides the
incident left Ramon Garcia, Jean Marie Garcia, Sandra Montano and Willie penalty of reclusion perpetua to death for the crime of murder. Without
Acosta dead. any mitigating or aggravating circumstance attendant in the commission of
the crime, the medium penalty is the lower indivisible penalty or reclusion
H: NOT A COMPLEX CRIME. Notwithstanding the absence of any perpetua. In the case at bar, accused-appellant, being guilty of four
aggravating circumstances, if we were to uphold the trial courts premises separate counts of murder, the proper penalty should be four sentences of
on the complex nature of the crime committed, the death sentence, being reclusion perpetua. In addition, he being guilty of two counts of frustrated
the maximum penalty for murder, would still have been the imposable murder, accused-appellant must be meted out an indeterminate sentence
penalty under Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code. ranging from a minimum of 6 years and 1 day of prision mayor to a
maximum of 12 years and 1 day of reclusion temporal for each offense.

Re conviction for illegal possession of firearms

Now, to the matter of accused-appellants conviction for illegal

possession of unlicensed firearm under Presidential Decree No. 1866.
4 Jurisprudence provides that there can be no separate conviction of the
The foregoing features also distinguish this case from those of U.S. v. Sol, 9 crime of illegal possession of firearms under Presidential Decree No. 1866
Phil. 265 [1907] where the restraint was for no other purpose than to prevent in view of the amendments introduced by Republic Act No. 8294.
the victims from reporting the crime to the authorities; from People v.
Gamboa, 92 Phil. 1085 [1953] where the victims were taken to a place one Instead, illegal possession of firearms is merely to be taken as an
kilometer away and shot in order to liquidate the witnesses to the robbery; aggravating circumstance per Section 1 of Republic Act No. 8294, which
from People v. Baysa, 92 Phil. 1008 [1953]; People v. Manzanilla, 43 Phil. in part, provides: If homicide or murder is committed with the use of
167 [1922], all of which cases were cited in Astor and where the victims were unlicensed firearm, such use of an unlicensed firearm shall be considered
only incidentally detained so that the detention was deemed absorbed in as an aggravating circumstance.
robbery. Republic Act No. 8294 took effect on July 6, 1997, fifteen days after its
publication on June 21, 1997. The crimes involved in the case at bar were
committed on September 17, 1995. As in the case of any penal law, the
BVTC | Criminal Law Review 9
provisions of Republic Act No. 8294 will generally have prospective commission of the separate information
application. In cases, however, where the new law will be advantageous to composite offense,
the accused, the law may be given retroactive application (Article 22, such light felony is
Revised Penal Code). Insofar as it will spare accused-appellant in the case absorbed.
at bar from a separate conviction for the crime of illegal possession of
firearms, Republic Act No. 8294 may be given retroactive application in CONTINUED CRIME
Criminal Case No. U-8749 (for Illegal Possession of Firearm) subject of this
present review. Continued Crime – is a single crime, consisting of a series of acts but all
arising from one criminal resolution.
NOTA BENE: As a word of caution, however, the dismissal of the present
case for illegal possession of firearm should not be misinterpreted as  A thief who takes from the yard of a house two roosters
meaning that there can no longer be any prosecution for the crime of belonging to two different persons commits only one crime, for
illegal possession of firearm. In general, all pending cases involving illegal the reason that there is a unity of thought in the criminal
possession of firearm should continue to be prosecuted and tried if no purpose of the offender. There is no series of acts here for the
other crimes expressly indicated in Republic Act No. 8294 are involved accomplishment of different purposes, but of only one
(murder or homicide under Section 1, and rebellion, insurrection, sedition (purpose) which is consummated, and which determines the
or attempted coup detat under Section 3). existence of only one crime. (Pp vs De Leon)
 The series of acts born of a single criminal impulse may be
However, the use of an unlicensed firearm in the case at bar cannot be
perpetrated during a long period of time.
considered as a special aggravating circumstance in Criminal Case No. U-
 A continued crime is not a complex crime, because the offender
8747 (for Complex Crime of Multiple Murder), also under review herein,
in continued crime does not perform a single act but a series of
because it will unduly raise the penalty for the four counts of murder from
acts, and one offense is not a necessary means for committing
four reclusion perpetua to that of four-fold death. Insofar as this particular
the other.
provision of Republic Act No. 8294 is not beneficial to accused-appellant
 A continued crime is different from transitory crime.
because it unduly aggravates the crime, this new law will not be given
 If the acts were committed on different occasions, it is not a
retroactive application, lest it might acquire the character of an ex-post
continued crime.
facto law.
Q: What is single larceny doctrine?
PEOPLE vs LAWAS(1955) A: The trend in theft cases is to follow the “single larceny doctrine” that is,
the taking of several things, whether belonging to the same or different
F: Accused and other members of the Home Guard commenced firing at a persons, at the same time and place, constitutes but ONE LARCENY. The
large group of Maranaos at a signal from Lawas and continued firing until separate larceny doctrine under which there was a distinct larceny as to
he gave a cease-fire signal. About 50 Maranaos died in the slaughter. the property of each victim has been abandoned.
Accused were found guilty of the compound crime of multiple homicide.
PP vs DE LEON (1926)

H: On the view of single criminal impulse, SC ruled that there was no intent F: Vicente de Leon entered the yard of Vicente Magat's house situated in
on the part of the accused either to fire at each and every one of the Manila, and without violence or intimidation against persons nor force
victims as separately and distinctly from each other. upon things, took, with intent to gain, two game roosters which were in the
yard, one with colored plumage valued at P8 belonging to Diego Magat,
and the other with white plumage and black spots, valued at P10,
SPECIAL COMPLEX CRIMES (or Composite Crimes)
belonging to Ignacio Nicolas.
Definition – the combination of the offenses is fixed by law (e.g kidnapping
RTC found the accused guilty of one crime of theft, holding that the theft of
with rape)
the two roosters constituted but one crime. Accused on his appeal to the
 These are crimes which in the eyes of the law are treated as Supreme Court that the lower court erred in finding that he’s guilty, the
single indivisible offenses although in reality are made up of attorney-general also raised in his brief the proper imposition of penalty
against the accused because he contends that he committed two crimes
more than one crime;
of theft.
 For example: (1) ROBBERY (robbery with homicide, robbery with
rape ,robbery with mutilation or robbery with serious physical
injuries) (2) ARSON with homicide (3) KIDNAPPING (kidnapping ISSUE: whether or not the fact that the accused, with intent to gain, on the
with homicide, kidnapping with rape, kidnapping with serious same occasion and in the same place, took the two roosters, one
belonging to Vicente Magat and the other to Ignacio Nicolas, constitutes
physical injuries) (4) RAPE with homicide
two crimes of theft.
Distinguish composite crimes from complex crimes
HELD: NO. The crime of theft is an offense against personal property and
Composite Crime Complex Crime what is punished is the alarm caused in the community by the
As to the number of The combination of the combination is not perpetration of the act which is violative of the individual rights guaranteed
offenses offenses is fixed by specified but in by the law, as well as the damage that said act may occasion to the
law general terms i.e members of the community. Under sound principles, the act of taking the
grave and/or less two roosters, in response to the unity of thought in the criminal purpose on
grave or one offense one occasion, is not susceptible of being modified by the accidental
being necessary circumstance that the article unlawfully belonged to two distinct persons.
means to commit the There is no series of acts here for the accomplishment of different
other purposes, but only one of which was consummated, and which determines
As to penalty The penalty for The penalty is not the existence of only one crime. The act of taking the roosters in the same
specified combination specific but is for the place and on the same occasion cannot give rise to two crimes having an
of crimes is also most serious offense independent existence of their own, because there are not two distinct
specific in the maximum appropriations nor two intentions that characterize two separate crimes.
As to counts Even if there are more If there is more than It is not an element of the crime of theft that the culprit know the owner of
than one count of the one count of the crime
the thing stolen, the crime being consummated provided that being stolen
component crime, forming part of the belongs to another and the same is taken with intent to gain. Neither is it
there is just one complex crime, the necessary for the existence of the crime of theft that it should appear in a
composite crime to be first shall be specific manner who the owner is of the thing stolen, because the law
charged complexed while the does not require it nor does it affect the criminal liability, but only the
other counts may be
restitution or indemnification of damages, which are merely of a civil
treated as separate nature. (Decision of the Supreme Court of Spain, October 4, 1905.) What
crime. constitutes the crime of theft is the taking of another's property with intent
As to absorption of If a light felony The light felony may to gain, without the consent of the owner, so that after the unlawful act of
light felony accompanied the be subject to a taking another's property is proven, it is evident that all the elements
BVTC | Criminal Law Review 10
mentioned in the first paragraph of article 517 of the Penal Code exist. SECOND CASE: the arrest of Amelia Roque and Wilfredo Buenaobra,
Therefore, we are of the opinion that the unity of the intention to take a without warrant, is also justified. When apprehended in Marikina Heights,
thing belonging to another on one occasion and in the same place, Marikina. Wilfredo Buenaobra admitted that he was an NPA courier and he
constitutes the commission of only one crime of theft; and fact that the had with him letters to Renato Constantino and other members of the
things taken belong to different persons does not produce a multiplicity of rebel group. Amelia Roque, upon the other hand, was a member of the
crimes, which must be punished separately. National United Front Commission, in charge of finance,
and admitted ownership of subversive documents found in the house of
her sister in Caloocan City. She was also in possession of ammunition and
a fragmentation grenade for which she had no permit or authority to
Continuing Crime – Under the Rules of Court, is a crime where any of the
elements of the offense was committed in different localities, such that
the accused may be indicted in any of those localities. RULING: YES, VALID ARREST. The contention of respondents that
 It may also refer to any offense which is continuing in time (e.g petitioners Roque and Buenaobra are officers and/or members of the
rebellion, which may have been started years ago by the National United Front Commission (NUFC) of the CPP was not controverted
offender and continuing up to present) or traversed by said petitioners. The contention must be deemed
admitted. 5 As officers and/or members of the NUFC-CPP, their arrest,
UMIL vs RAMOS (1990) without warrant, was justified for the same reasons earlier stated vis-a-
vis Rolando Dural. The arrest without warrant of Roque was additionally
FAST FACTS: This case involves 8 petitions for habeas corpus assailing the justified as she was, at the time of apprehension, in possession of
validity of the arrests and searches made by the military on the petitioners. ammunitions without license to possess them.
The arrests relied on the “confidential information” that the authorities
received. Except for one case where inciting to sedition was charged, the THIRD CASE: the arrest of Domingo Anonuevo and Ramon Casiple, without
rest are charged with subversion for being a member of the New People’s warrant, is also JUSTIFIED under the rules. Both are admittedly members
Army. HELD: VALID ARRESTS. of the standing committee of the NUFC and, when apprehended in the
house of Renato Constatino, they had a bag containing subversive
FACTS: materials, and both carried firearms and ammunition for which they had
no license to possess or carry. RULING: YES, VALID ARREST. The record
There are eight (8) petitioners for habeas corpus filed before the Court shows that Domingo Anonuevo and Ramon Casiple were carrying
praying for the issuance of the writ of habeas corpus, ordering the unlicensed firearms and ammunition in their person when they were
respective respondents to produce the bodies of the persons named apprehended.
therein and to explain why they should not be set at liberty without further
delay. Respondents assert that the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is
not available to the petitioners as they have been legally arrested and are FOURTH CASE: the arrest without warrant, of Vicky Ocaya is justified
detained by virtue of valid informations filed in court against them. under the Rules, since she had with her unlicensed ammunition when she
Petitioners counter that their detention is unlawful as their arrests were was arrested. By virtue of a search warrant issued by Judge Eutropio
made without warrant and, that no preliminary investigation was first Migrino of the Regional Trial Court of Pasig, Metro Manila, authorities
conducted, so that the informations filed against them are null and void. conducted a search of a house located in Marikina, Metro Manila.
Subversive documents and several rounds of ammunition for a .45 cal.
ISSUE: WON WARRANT OF ARREST IS NOT NEEDED IN THE CRIMES OF pistol were found in the car of Vicky Ocaya. A petition for habeas
REBELLION AND SUBVERSION HELD: YES. corpus was filed, with this Court on behalf of Vicky Ocaya and Danny
Rivera. It was alleged therein that Vicky Ocaya was illegally arrested and
detained, and denied the right to a preliminary investigation. RULING:
FIRST CASE: Rolando Dural, a member of the NPA liquidation squad, VALID ARREST. Vicky Ocaya was arrested in flagrante delicto so that her
responsible for the killing of 2 CAPCOM soldiers Caloocan City was being arrest without a warrant is justified. No preliminary investigation was
treated in a hospital, this confidential information was received by the conducted because she was arrested without a warrant and she refused
Intelligence unit of the Capital Command. In view of this verification, he to waive the provisions of Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code, pursuant
was transferred to the Regional Medical Services of the CAPCOM. While to Sec. 7, Rule 112 of the Rule of Court, as amended.
confined thereat, he was positively identified by eyewitnesses as the
gunman who fired at the two (2) CAPCOM soldiers. Hence, he was referred
to the Caloocan City Fiscal who conducted an inquest and thereafter filed FIFTH CASE: The petitioners Vicky Ocaya, Domingo Anonuevo, Ramon
with the RTC Caloocan City an information charging Rolando Casiple, and Amelia Roque claim that the firearms, ammunition and
Dural alias Ronnie Javelon with the crime of "Double Murder with Assault subversive documents alleged to have been found in their possession
Upon Agents of Persons in Authority." when they were arrested, did not belong to them, but were "planted" by the
military agents to justify their illegal arrest. RULING: Petitioners have not
introduced any evidence to support their aforesaid claim. On the other
Ruling for Rolando Dural: YES, VALID ARREST BECAUSE THE CRIME hand, no evil motive or ill-will on the part of the arresting officers that
COMMITTED WAS SUBVERSION. Dural contends that he was not arrested would cause the said arresting officers in these cases to accuse the
while in the act of shooting the two (2) CAPCOM soldiers aforementioned. petitioners falsely, has been shown. The arrest of the petitioners is not a
Nor was he arrested just after the commission of the said offense for his product of a witch hunt or a fishing expedition, but the result of an in-
arrest came a day after the said shooting incident. Seemingly, his arrest depth surveillance of NPA safehouses pointed to by no less than former
without warrant is unjustified. HOWEVER, He was arrested for being a comrades of the petitioners in the rebel movement.
member of the NPA, an outlawed subversive organization. Subversion
being a continuing offense, the arrest of Rolando Dural without warrant is
justified as it can be said that he was committing an offense when SIXTH CASE: (Espiritu vs. Lim), the release on habeas corpus of the
arrested. The crimes of rebellion, subversion, conspiracy or proposal to petitioner Deogracias Espiritu, who is detained by virtue of an Information
commit such crimes, and crimes or offenses committed in furtherance for Violation of Article 142 of the Revised Penal Code (Inciting to Sedition)
thereof or in connection therewith constitute direct assaults against the filed with the Regional Trial Court of Manila. Petitioner is the General
State and are in the nature of continuing crimes. Secretary of the Pinagkaisahang Samahan ng Tsuper at Operators
Nationwide (PISTON), an association of drivers and operators of public
service vehicles. He claims that he was awakened by his sister who told
The claim of the petitioners that they were initially arrested illegally is, him that a group of persons wanted to hire his jeepney. When he went
therefore, without basis in law and in fact. The crimes of insurrection or down to talk to them, he was immediately put under arrest. He was
rebellion, subversion, conspiracy or proposal to commit such crimes, and brought to Police Station in Manila where he was interrogated and
other crimes and offenses committed in the furtherance, on the occasion detained. The respondents claim however, that the detention of the
thereof, or incident thereto, or in connection therewith under Presidential petitioner is justified in view of the Information filed against him before
Proclamation No. 2045, are all in the nature of continuing offenses which RTC Manila for the crime of Inciting to Sedition.
set them apart from the common offenses, aside from their essentially
involving a massive conspiracy of nationwide magnitude. Clearly then, the
arrest of the herein detainees was well within the bounds of the law and RULING: VALID ARREST. Since the arrest of the petitioner without a
existing jurisprudence in our jurisdiction. warrant was in accordance with the provisions of Rule 113, Sec. 5(b) of
the Rules of Court, because he had in fact just committed an offense in
that in the afternoon of 22 November 1988, during a press conference at
the National Press Club. (Deogracias Espiritu through tri-media was heard

BVTC | Criminal Law Review 11

urging all drivers and operators to go on nationwide strike on November depriving the Chief Executive or the legislature, wholly or partially, of any of
23, 1988, to force the government to give into their demands to lower the their powers or prerogatives.
prices of spare parts, commodities, water and the immediate release from
detention of the president of the PISTON). Moreover, the petitioner is On the other hand, a coup d etat is defined as follows:
detained by virtue of a valid information filed with the competent court, he ART. 134-A. Coup d etat. How committed. The crime of coup d etat is a
may not be released on habeas corpus. swift attack accompanied by violence, intimidation, threat, strategy or
stealth, directed against the duly constituted authorities of the Republic of
the Philippines, or any military camp or installation, communications
SEVENTH CASE: Romulo Bunye II was killed by a group of men somewhere
networks, public utilities or other facilities needed for the exercise and
in Muntinlupa. One of the suspects in the killing was Ramil Regal who was
continued possession of power, singly or simultaneously carried out
arrested by the police on 28 December 1988. Upon questioning, Regal
anywhere in the Philippines by any person or persons, belonging to the
pointed to Narciso Nazareno as on of his companions in the killing of the
military or police or holding any public office or employment, with or
said Romulo Bunye II. In view thereof, the police officers, without warrant,
without civilian support or participation, for the purpose of seizing or
picked up Narciso Nazareno and brought him to the police headquarters
diminishing state power.
for questioning. Obviously, the evidence of petitioner's guilt is strong
because on 3 January 1989, an information charging Narciso Nazareno,
Under these provisions, the crime of rebellion or insurrection is
Ramil Regala, and two (2) others, with the killing of Romulo Bunye II was
committed only by rising publicly or taking up arms against the
filed with the Regional Trial Court of Makati, Metro Manila. The case is
Government.A coup d etat, on the other hand, takes place only when there
docketed therein as Criminal Case No. 731. RULING: VALID ARREST. The
is a swift attack accompanied by violence. Once the act of rising publicly
arrest of Nazareno was effected by the police without warrant pursuant to
and taking up arms against the Government ceases, the commission of
Sec. 5(b), Rule 113, Rules of Court after he was positively implicated by
the crime of rebellion ceases. Similarly, when the swift attack ceases, the
his co-accused Ramil Regala in the killing of Romulo Bunye
crime of coup d etat is no longer being committed.
II; and after investigation by the police authorities.
Rebellion has been held to be a continuing crime, and the authorities may
SC HELD THAT THE ARRESTS WERE VALID: Court held that the persons resort to warrantless arrests of persons suspected of rebellion, as
detained have not been illegally arrested nor arbitrarily deprived of their provided under Section 5, Rule 113 of the Rules of Court. [ However, this
constitutional right to liberty, and that the circumstances attending these doctrine should be applied to its proper context i.e., relating to subversive
cases do not warrant their release on habeas corpus. The arrest of a armed organizations, such as the New Peoples Army, the avowed purpose
person without a warrant of arrest or previous complaint is recognized in of which is the armed overthrow of the organized and established
law. The occasions or instances when such an arrest may be effected are government. Only in such instance should rebellion be considered a
clearly spelled out in Section 5, Rule 113 5 of the Rules of Court. An arrest continuing crime.
without a warrant of arrest, under Section 5 paragraphs (a) and (b) of Rule
113 of the Rules of Court, as amended, is justified when the person When the soldiers surrendered peacefully in the evening of July 27, the
arrested is caught in flagranti delicto, viz., in the act of committing an rebellion or the coup d etat ended. The President, however, did not lift the
offense; or when an offense has just been committed and the person declaration of the state of rebellion until 5 days later, on August 1, 2003.
making the arrest has personal knowledge of the facts indicating that the After the peaceful surrender, no person suspected of having conspired
person arrested has committed it. The record of the instant cases would with the soldiers or participated in the Oakwood incident could be arrested
show that the persons in whose behalf these petitions for habeas without a warrant of arrest.
corpushave been filed, had freshly committed or were actually committing
an offense, when apprehended, so that their arrests without a warrant Section 5, Rule 113 of the Revised Rules of Court, which governs arrest
were clearly justified, and that they are, further, detained by virtue of valid without warrant, provides as follows:
informations filed against them in court.. SEC. 5. Arrest without warrant; when lawful. A peace officer or a private
person may, without a warrant, arrest a person:
(a) When, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is
Justice Ynares-Santiago: actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense;
(b) When an offense has just been committed and he has probable cause
Clearly defined in Article 134 of the Revised Penal Code is the crime of to believe based on personal knowledge of facts or circumstances that the
rebellion or insurrection, to wit: person to be arrested has committed it; and
ART. 134. Rebellion or insurrection How committed. The crime of rebellion
or insurrection is committed by rising publicly and taking up arms against In cases falling under paragraphs (a) and (b) above, the person arrested
the Government for the purpose of removing from the allegiance to said without a warrant shall be forthwith delivered to the nearest police station
Government or its laws, the territory of the Republic of the Philippines or or jail and shall be proceeded against in accordance with section 7 of Rule
any part thereof, of any body of land, naval or other armed forces, or 112.

After the peaceful surrender of the soldiers on July 27, 2003, there was no
crime that was being attempted, being committed, or had just been
committed. There should, therefore, be no occasion to effect a valid
5 warrantless arrest in connection with the Oakwood Incident. The purpose
Sec. 5. Arrest without warrant; when lawful. — A peace officer or a private
of the declaration and its duration as far as the overeager authorities were
person may, without a warrant, arrest a person: concerned was only to give legal cover to effect warrantless arrests even if
the state of rebellion or the instances stated in Rule 113 6, Section 5 of the
(a) When, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually Rules are absent or no longer exist.
committing, or is attempting to commit an offense; Our history had shown the dangers when too much power is concentrated
in the hands of one person. Unless specifically defined, it is risky to
concede and acknowledge the residual powers to justify the validity of the
(b) When an offense has in fact just been committed, and he has personal presidential issuances. This can serve as a blank check for other
knowledge of facts indicating that the person to be arrested has committed it; issuances and open the door to abuses. The majority cite the exercise of
and strong executive powers by U.S. President Andrew Jackson. Was it not

(c) When the person to be arrested is a prisoner who has escaped from a penal
establishment or place where he is serving final judgment or temporarily Rule 113, Section 5, pars. (a) and (b) of the Rules of Court
confined while his case is pending, or has escaped while being transferred are exceptions to the due process clause in the Constitution. Section 5,
from one confinement to another. par. (a)relates to a situation where a crime is committed or attempted in
the presence of the arresting officer.
In cases falling under paragraphs (a) and (b) hereof, the person arrested
without a warrant shall be forthwith delivered to the nearest police station or Section 5, par. (b), on the other hand, presents the requirement of
personal knowledge, on the part of the arresting officer, of facts indicating
jail, and he shall be proceeded against in accordance with Rule 112, Section 7.
that an offense had just been committed, and that the person to be
arrested had committed that offense.

BVTC | Criminal Law Review 12

President Jackson who is said to have cynically defied the U.S. Supreme 4. When the penalty is composed of several periods corresponding
Courts ruling (under Chief Justice Marshall) against the forcible removal of to different divisible penalties, the penalty next lower in degree
the American Indians from the tribal lands by saying: The Chief Justice has shall be composed of the period immediately following the
issued his Decision, now let him try to enforce it? Others quote Madison as minimum prescribed and of the two next following, which shall
having gone further with: With what army will the Chief Justice enforce his be taken from the penalty prescribed;
Decision? 5. By analogy (1) when the penalty has two periods (2) when the
penalty has one period;
Read Arts 48,49,58,59,60,67,68,69 RULES OF GRADUATING PENALTIES regarding aggravating and mitigating
circumstances under Art 62:
Rules as to the penalty to be imposed when the crime committed is  Note the effect 7 of the attendance of aggravating or mitigating
different from that intended: (Art 49) circumstance or of habitual delinquency:
1. If the penalty for the felony committed be higher than the
penalty for the offense which the accused intended to commit, 1. Those which in themselves constitute a crime (by means of fire
the lower penalty shall be imposed in its maximum period; or arson); Those included by law in defining a crime and
2. If the penalty for the felony committed be lower than the penalty prescribing the penalty (laying hands upon a person in authority
for the offense which the accused intended to commit, the which is direct assault) and those inherent in the crime (e.g
lower penalty shall be imposed in its maximum period; dwelling in trespass to dwelling) – these shall no longer be
3. if the act committed also constitutes an attempt or frustration considered in imposing the penalty;
of another crime, and the law prescribes a higher penalty for 2. those which are caused by the moral attributes of the offender
either of the latter, the penalty for the attempted or frustrated or his relations with the offended or any other personal cause –
crime shall be imposed in its maximum period; only the offender having such attribute shall be affected;
3. With respect to habitual delinquency, the offender shall be
 Applies only with error in personae (mistake of identity) sentenced for the last crime which he was found guilty and to
 Article 49 vs Article 48: In article 49, the lesser penalty is to be an additional penalty depending on the number of convictions
imposed, to be applied in the maximum period. In Art 48, the he had. BUT the total of two penalties should not be more than
penalty for the more or most serious crime shall be imposed, 30 years;
the same to be applied in its maximum period

GRADUATION OF PENALTIES 1. When the penalty is single indivisible, it shall be applied regardless of
any mitigating or aggravating circumstances;
Art 50-57 XPN: presence of privileged mitigating circumstance
Graduation by degrees which refer to: (1) stages of execution 2. When the penalty is two indivisible penalties, the ff. rules shall be
(consummated, frustrated, attempted) (2) degree of criminal participation applied:
(principal, accomplice, accessories) a. when there is only one aggravating circumstance, the greater
penalty shall be imposed;
Consummated Frustrated Attempted b. when there is neither mitigating nor aggravating circumstance,
Principal - as provided by 1 2 the lesser penalty shall be imposed;
law c. when there is a mitigating circumstance and no aggravating
Accomplice 1 2 3 circumstance, the lesser penalty shall be imposed;
Accessories 2 3 4 d. when both mitigating circumstances are present, the court shall
allow them to offset one another;
Exceptions to the rules established in Arts 50-57: shall not apply to cases
where the law expressly prescribes the penalty for a frustrated or Q: Why is reclusion perpetua still an indivisible penalty when it now has a
fixed duration?
attempted felony or to be imposed upon accomplices or accessories
(Basis: Art 60)
RULES FOR THE APPLICATION OF DIVISIBLE (which contain three periods)
Q: When is an accomplice punished as a principal?
A: GR: An accomplice is punished by a penalty one degree lower than the PENALTIES under Art 64:
penalty imposed upon the principal.
XPNS:: Modifying Circumstances Proper Period
1. the ascendants, guardians, curators, teachers and any person No aggravating and No mitigating Medium
who by abuse of authority or confidential relationship, shall
cooperate as accomplices in the crimes of rape, acts of Mitigating only Minimum
lasciviousness, seduction, corruption of minors, white slave
trade or abduction; Aggravating only Maximum
2. one who furnished the place for the perpetration of the crime of
slight illegal detention; Some of both present Offset then apply above rules

Q: When is an accessory punished as a principal? Two or More mitigating with no ONE DEGREE LOWER
A: In Art 142, the crime of inciting to sedition. Knowingly concealing certain aggravating (privileged mitigating)
evil practices is ordinarily an act of the accessory, but such act is
punished as the act of principal in Art. 142. Q: Do the rules under Art 64 apply to quasi-offenses under Art 365?
A: No, Modifying circumstances relate to the moral attribute of the
RULES OF GRADUATING PENALTIES UNDER ART. 61 in accordance with offender which is irrelevant in quasi-offenses, intent being absent.
Arts 50-57: Paragraph 5 of Art 365 provides that in the imposition of the penalties for
1. When the penalty is single and indivisible, the penalty next quasi-offenses, the courts shall exercise their sound discretion without
lower in degree shall be that immediately following that regard to the rules prescribed in Art 64.
indivisible penalty in the respective graduated scale in Art 71;
2. When the penalty is composed of two indivisible penalties OR
When the penalty is composed of one or more divisible
penalties to be imposed to their full extent, the penalty next
lower in degree shall be that immediately following the lesser of 7
Aggravating Circumstances (generic and specific) have the effect of
the penalties prescribed; increasing the penalty, without, however, exceeding the maximum provided by
3. When the penalty is composed of two indivisible penalties and law.
the maximum period of a divisible penalty OR when the penalty
is composed of one indivisible penalty and the maximum period Mitigating Circumstances have the effect of diminishing the penalty.
of a divisible penalty, the penalty next lower in degree shall be
composed of the medium and minimum periods of the proper Habitual Delinquency has the effect, not only of increasing the penalty
divisible penalty and the maximum period of that immediately because of recidivism which is generally implied in habitual delinquency, but
following; also of imposing additional penalty.
BVTC | Criminal Law Review 13
Three-fold rule – (Art 70) when the offender has to serve two or more Art 71 refers to graduation of penalties in relation to Art 61
penalties, the maximum duration of the convict’s sentence shall not be
more than three-fold the length of time corresponding to the most severe INDETERMINATE SENTENCE LAW
of the penalties imposed upon him. ACT No. 4103 as amended

GR: When a convict is given multiple sentences, he shall serve them Q: What is the Indeterminate Sentence Law?
simultaneously if the nature of the penalties permits simultaneous service A: It is a law which modified the imposition of penalties under RPC and
of sentence. Otherwise, the penalties shall be serves successively in the special laws. The courts are mandated in imposing a sentence to fix a
order prescribed in this article. minimum and a maximum period of penalty. The minimum sentence must
be served and thereupon, the convict becomes eligible for parole.
 The Three-Fold Rule can only be applied if the convict is to serve
four or more sentences successively. If the sentences would be GR: The ISL is mandatory.
served simultaneously, the Three-Fold rule does not govern. XPN: Except in the following cases:
 Court must impose all the penalties for all the crimes of which 1. Offenses punishable by death or life imprisonment;
the accused is found guilty but in the service of the same, they 2. those convicted of treason, conspiracy or proposal to commit
shall not exceed three times the most severe and shall not treason;
exceed 40 years 3. convicted of misprision of treason, rebellion, sedition or espionage;
 If the sum total of all the penalties does not exceed the most 4. convicted of piracy;
severe multiplied by three, the three-fold rule does not apply. 5. habitual delinquents; (note that recidivists are entitled to ISL, PP vs
MEJORADA vs SANDIGANBAYAN (1987) 6. those who escaped from confinement or those who evaded
F: Accused Mejorada was found by the Sandiganbayan guilty beyond 7. those granted conditional pardon and who violated its terms;
reasonable doubt of violating Section 3(E) of Republic Act No. 3019, 8. those whose maximum period of imprisonment does not exceed one
otherwise known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. year
Note: ISL applies even of the penalty is a result of plea bargaining
Information against him provides: 9. those who are already serving final judgment upon the approval of
“That in (sic) or about and during the period comprised from October 1977 ISL;
to February 1978, in the municipality of Pasig, Metro Manila, Philippines
and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named Q: When the penalty imposed is reclusion perpetua, is the law applicable?
accused, being employed in the Office of the Highway District Engineer, A: No, ISL does not apply. For offenses which the law prescribes the single
Pasig, Metro Manila, as Right-of-Way-Agent conspiring and confederating indivisible penalty of reclusion perpetua, it is the first paragraph of Art 63
together with two (2) other John Does whose true Identities and present and not the ISL that applies.
whereabouts are still unknown, with evident bad faith, and for personal
gain, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously, directly PEOPLE vs SIMON (1994)
intervene, work for, and facilitate the approval of one Isagani de Leon's
claim for the payment in the removal and reconstruction of his house and F: Herein accused Martin Simon y Sunga was charged with a violation of
a part of his land expropriated by the government having been affected by Section 4, Article II of Republic Act
the proposed Pasig-Sta Cruz-Calamba Road. 2nd IBRD Project at No. 6425, as amended, otherwise known as the Dangerous Drugs Act of
Binangonan, Rizal, while the accused, Arturo A. Mejorada is in the 1972, under an indictment alleging that on or about October 22, 1988, at
discharge of his official and/or administrative functions and after said Barangay Sto. Cristo, Guagua, Pampanga, he sold four tea bags of
claim was approved and the corresponding PNB Check No. SN 5625748 marijuana to a Narcotics Command (NARCOM) poseur-buyer in
was issued and encashed in the amount of P7,200.00 given only consideration of the sum of P40.00, which tea bags, when subjected to
P1,000.00 to claimant (Isagani de Leon), appropriating, applying and laboratory examination, were found positive for marijuana
converting to themselves the amount of P6,200.00, thereby causing
damage and prejudice to Isagani de Leon and the government in the RTC- convicted accused for a penalty of life imprisonment, to pay a fine
aforementioned amount of P6,200.00” of twenty thousand pesos and to pay the costs.

Among the issues raised by the accused in his Petition for Certiorari is the
ISSUE 1: Considering that herein appellant is being prosecuted for the sale
issue which concerns the penalty imposed by the Sandiganbayan which
of four tea bags of marijuana with a total weight of only 3.8 grams and, in
totals fifty-six (56) years and eight (8) days of imprisonment. Petitioner
fact, stands to be convicted for the sale of only two of those tea bags, the
impugns this as contrary to the three-fold rule and insists that the duration
initial inquiry would be whether the patently favorable provisions of
of the aggregate penalties should not exceed forty (40) years.
Republic Act No. 7659 should be given retroactive effect to entitle him to
the lesser penalty provided thereunder, pursuant to Article 22 of the
HELD: UNTENABLE. Petitioner is mistaken in his application of the three- Revised Penal Code.
fold rule as set forth in Article 70 of the Revised Penal Code. This article is
to be taken into account not in the imposition of the penalty but in
H: YES. considering the minimal quantity of the marijuana subject of the
connection with the service of the sentence imposed (People v. Escares,
case at bar, the penalty of prision correccional is consequently
102 Phil. 677 [1957]). Article 70 speaks of "service" of sentence,
indicated .It would, therefore, be in line with the provisions of Section 20 in
"duration" of penalty and penalty "to be inflicted". Nowhere in the article is
the context of our aforesaid disposition thereon that, unless there are
anything mentioned about the "imposition of penalty". It merely provides
compelling reasons for a deviation, the quantities of the drugs
that the prisoner cannot be made to serve more than three times the most
enumerated in its second paragraph be divided into three, with the
severe of these penalties the maximum of which is forty years.
resulting quotient, and double or treble the same, to be respectively the
bases for allocating the penalty proportionately among the three aforesaid
The Sandiganbayan, therefore, did not commit any error in imposing eight periods according to the severity thereof. Thus, if the marijuana involved is
penalties for the eight informations filed against the accused-petitioner. As below 250 grams, the penalty to be imposed shall be prision correccional;
We pointed out in the case of People v. Peralta, (No. L-19069, October 29, from 250 to 499 grams, prision mayor; and 500 to
1968, 25 SCRA 759, 783-784): 749 grams, reclusion temporal. Parenthetically, fine is imposed as a
conjunctive penalty only if the penalty is reclusion perpetua to death.
... Even without the authority provided by Article 70, courts can still impose
as many penalties as there are separate and distinct offenses committed, ISSUE 2: whether or not the Indeterminate Sentence Law is applicable to
since for every individual crime committed, a corresponding penalty is the case
prescribed by law. Each single crime is an outrage against the State for
which the latter, thru the courts of justice, has the power to impose the
H: YES. Since drug offenses are not included in nor has appellant
appropriate penal sanctions.
committed any act which would put him within the exceptions to said law
and the penalty to be imposed does not involve reclusion perpetua or
In the light of the above reasons, petitioner cannot assail the penalty death, provided, of course, that the penalty as ultimately resolved will
imposed upon him as harsh, cruel and unusual (See Veniegas v. People, exceed one year of imprisonment.68 The more important aspect, however,
G.R. No. 57601-06 July 20, 1982, 115 SCRA 790, 792). is how the indeterminate sentence shall be ascertained.

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It is true that Section 1 of said law, after providing for indeterminate of arresto mayor, the penalty next lower to prision correccional which is
sentence for an offense under the Revised Penal Code, states that "if the the maximum range we have fixed through the application of Articles 61
offense is punished by any other law, the court shall sentence the accused and 71 of the Revised Penal Code. For, with fealty to the law, the court
to an indeterminate sentence, the maximum term of which shall not may set the minimum sentence at 6 months of arresto mayor, instead of 6
exceed the maximum fixed by said law and the minimum shall not be less months and 1 day of prision correccional. The difference, which could
than the minimum term prescribed by the same." We hold that this quoted thereby even involve only one day, is hardly worth the creation of an
portion of the section indubitably refers to an offense under a special law overrated tempest in the judicial teapot.
wherein the penalty imposed was not taken from and is without reference
to the Revised Penal Code, as discussed in the preceding illustrations,
such that it may be said that the "offense is punished" under that law.

There can be no sensible debate that the aforequoted rule on F: Petitioner called Maria Antonia Seguan by phone and therafter went to
indeterminate sentence for offenses under special laws was necessary her store. She bought various kinds of jewelry -- Singaporean necklaces,
because of the nature of the former type of penalties under said laws bracelets and rings worth P300,000.00. She wrote out a check dated
which were not included or contemplated in the scale of penalties in August 25, 1990, payable to "cash" drawn on Metrobank in the amount
Article 71 of the Code, hence there could be no minimum "within the range of P300,000.00 and gave the check to Seguan. The following day, she
of the penalty next lower to that prescribed by the Code for the offense," purchased jewelry valued at P241,668.00. Petitioner issued another
as is the rule for felonies therein. In the illustrative examples of penalties check payable to "cash" dated August 16, 1990 drawn on Metrobank in
in special laws hereinbefore provided, this rule applied, and would still the amount of P241,668.00[ and sent the check to Seguan through a
apply, only to the first and last examples. Furthermore, considering the certain Aurelia Nadera. Seguan deposited the two checks with her
vintage of Act No. 4103 as earlier noted, this holding is but an application bank. The checks were returned with a notice of dishonor. Petitioner's
and is justified under the rule of contemporanea expositio.69 account in the bank from which the checks were drawn was closed. Upon
demand, petitioner promised to pay Seguan the amounts of the two
dishonored checks. She never did.
We repeat, Republic Act No. 6425, as now amended by Republic Act No.
7659, has unqualifiedly adopted the penalties under the Revised Penal RTC – found Rosa Lim guilty of twice violating Batas Pambansa Bilang
Code in their technical terms, hence with their technical signification and 22 and imposing on her two one-year imprisonment for each of the two
effects. In fact, for purposes of determining the maximum of said violations and ordered her to pay two fines, each amounting to two
sentence, we have applied the provisions of the amended Section 20 of hundred thousand pesos (P200,000.00).
said law to arrive at prision correccional and Article 64 of the Code to
impose the same in the medium period. Such offense, although provided On her appeal, she argued that she never knew Seguan and much more,
for in a special law, is now in effect punished by and under the Revised had any "transaction" with her. According to petitioner, she issued the two
Penal Code. Correlatively, to determine the minimum, we must apply the checks and gave them to Aurelia Nadera, not to Seguan. She gave the two
first part of the aforesaid Section 1 which directs that "in imposing a checks to Aurelia Nadera from whom she got two sets of jewelry, as a
prison sentence for an offense punished by the Revised Penal Code, or its "security arrangement" or "guarantee" that she would return the jewelry
amendments, the court shall sentence the accused to an indeterminate received if she would not be able to sell them.
sentence the maximum term of which shall be that which, in view of the
attending circumstances, could be properly imposed under the rules of SC held petitioner GUILTY for issuing two checks. They were dishonored
said Code, and the minimum which shall be within the range of the penalty upon presentment for payment due to the fact that the account was
next lower to that prescribed by the Code for the offense." (Emphasis closed. Petitioner failed to rebut the presumption that she knew her funds
ours.) were insufficient at the time of issue of the checks. And she failed to pay
the amount of the checks or make arrangement for its payment within five
A divergent pedantic application would not only be out of context but also (5) banking days from receipt of notice of dishonor. B.P. No. 22 was clearly
an admission of the hornbook maxim that qui haeret in litera haeret in violated.
cortice. Fortunately, this Court has never gone only skin-deep in its
construction of Act. No. 4103 by a mere literal appreciation of its
provisions. Thus, with regard to the phrase in Section 2 thereof excepting
from its coverage "persons convicted of offenses punished with death H: No, the two on-year imprisonment imposed by the RTC was not proper.
penalty or life imprisonment," we have held that what is considered is the B.P. No. 22 provides a penalty of "imprisonment of not less than thirty
penalty actually imposed and not the penalty imposable under the days but not more than one year or a fine of not less than, but not more
law,70 and that reclusion perpetua is likewise embraced therein although than double, the amount of the check which fine shall in no case exceed
what the law states is "life imprisonment". two hundred thousand pesos, or both such fine and imprisonment at the
discretion of the Court
What irresistibly emerges from the preceding disquisition, therefore, is that
In Vaca v. Court of Appeals, we held that in determining the penalty to be
under the concurrence of the principles of literal interpretation, which
imposed for violation of B.P. No. 22, the philosophy underlying the
have been rationalized by comparative decisions of this Court; of historical
Indeterminate Sentence Law applies. The philosophy is to redeem
interpretation, as explicated by the antecedents of the law and related
valuable human material, and to prevent unnecessary deprivation of
contemporaneous legislation; and of structural interpretation, considering
personal liberty and economic usefulness with due regard to the
the interrelation of the penalties in the Code as supplemented by Act No.
protection of the social order. There, we deleted the prison sentence
4103 in an integrated scheme of penalties, it follows that the minimum of
imposed on petitioners. We imposed on them only a fine double the
the indeterminate sentence in this case shall be the penalty next lower to
amount of the check issued. We considered the fact that petitioners
that prescribed for the offense. Thereby we shall have interpreted the
brought the appeal, believing in good faith, that no violation of B.P. No. 22
seeming ambiguity in Section 1 of Act No. 4103 in such a way as to
was committed, "otherwise, they would have simply accepted the
harmonize laws with laws, which is the best mode of interpretation.71
judgment of the trial court and applied for probation to evade prison
term." We do the same here. We believe such would best serve the ends
The indeterminate Sentence Law is a legal and social measure of of criminal justice.
compassion, and should be liberally interpreted in favor of the
accused.72 The "minimum" sentence is merely a period at which, and not Consequently, we delete the prison sentences imposed on petitioner. The
before, as a matter of grace and not of right, the prisoner may merely be two fines imposed for each violation, each amounting toP200,000.00 are
allowed to serve the balance of his sentence outside of his appropriate and sufficient. The award of moral damages and order to pay
confinement.73 It does not constitute the totality of the penalty since attorney's fees are deleted for lack of sufficient basis.
thereafter he still has to continue serving the rest of his sentence under
set conditions. That minimum is only the period when the convict's
eligibility for parole may be considered. In fact, his release on parole may PEOPLE vs LAMPAZA (1999)
readily be denied if he is found unworthy thereof, or his reincarceration
may be ordered on legal grounds, even if he has served the minimum F: Accused Lampaza appeals his conviction by RTC Antique finding him
sentence. guilty for the crime of rape. His defense was that it was a consensual
sexual intercourse – that Teodora Wacay is her paramour.
It is thus both amusing and bemusing if, in the case at bar, appellant The Court finds accused EGMEDIO LAMPAZA GUILTY beyond reasonable
should be begrudged the benefit of a minimum sentence within the range doubt of the crime of RAPE and applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law
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hereby sentences him to suffer the penalty of imprisonment for the period
of Twelve (12) Years and one (1) Day to Fourteen (14) Years and Eight (8)
Months as minimum to Seventeen (17) Years and Four (4) Months and
One (1) Day to Twenty (20) Years as maximum and to indemnify Teodora
Wacay [in] the amount of P30,000.00 as damages, without subsidiary
imprisonment in case of insolvency and to pay the costs.

CA: Affirmed his conviction but modified his penalty to reclusion



HELD: YES. Art. 335 of the Revised Penal Code provides that rape is
committed when carnal knowledge of a woman is obtained under any of
the following circumstances: (1) force or intimidation is used (2) the
woman is deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious, or (3) the woman
is under twelve years of age or is demented. Herein appellant does not
deny that he had carnal knowledge of the victim. Moreover, the totality of
the evidence presented shows that he employed force and intimidation
against her. Clearly, his conviction of rape should be affirmed.

Under the law in effect when the crime was committed, the penalty for
simple rape was reclusion perpetua. In imposing a lower indeterminate
penalty, the trial court erred, because the Indeterminate Sentence Law
does not apply when the offense involved is punishable with reclusion
perpetua. Likewise, appellant should be ordered to pay the victim
P50,000 as indemnity ex delicto, in line with existing jurisprudence. 45 We
agree with the Court of Appeals that he should also be ordered to pay
P50,000 as moral damages. The Court has held that "the fact that
complainant has suffered the trauma of mental, physical and
psychological sufferings which constitute the bases for moral damages is
too obvious to still require the victim's recital thereof at the trial . . . ."


BAR Q: As a rule, if the offender in a criminal case is acquitted, his ciivl

liability is also extinguished. What are the exceptions?
A: Exceptions to the rule that acquittal from a criminal case extinguishes
civil liability, are:
vi. when the civil action is based on obligations not arising from the act
complained of as a felony;
vii. when acquittal is based on reasonable doubt or acquittal is on the
ground that guilt has not been proven beyond reasonable doubt (Art
29, NCC);
viii. acquittal due to an exempting circumstance, like insanity;
ix. where the court states in its judgment that the case merely involves a
civil obligation;
x. where there was a proper reservation for the filing of separate civil
xi. in cases of independent civil actions provided for in Arts 31,32,33 and
34 of NCC;
xii. when the judgment of acquittal includes a declaration that the fact
form which the civil liability might arise did not exist;
xiii. where the civil liability is not derived or based on a criminal
act of which the accused is acquitted;

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