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ORIGINAL m
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REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES l l+ AH II: 58
SUPREME COURT
MANI IA

' " IJ/.MAR. 2. o /If
., . ..i -
SENATOR RAMON "BONG"
REVILLA, JR.,
Petitioner,
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G.R. No. 211437 s/-
(OMB-C-C-13-0316
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and OMB-C-C-13-
0395)
. ..--- For Certiorari and
t>J,. under Rule
.: . 65 With Prayer for
. \ C(>ff\tS Temporary Restraining
:J--_.,. . Order and/or Writ of
Jd / C () Preliminary Injunction
OFFICE OF THE
OMBUDSMAN, through its
Special Panel of
Investigators, NATIONAL
BURAU OF
INVESTIGATION, LEVITO D.
BALIGOD and FIELD
INVESTIGATION OFFICE,
OFFICE OF THE
OMBUDSMAN,
Respondents.
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PETITION FOR CERTIORARI AND PROHIBITION
(With Prayer for Te1nporary Restraining Order
and/or Writ of Preliminary Injunction)
Petitioner SENATOR RAMON "BONG" REVILLA, JR.
("SENATOR REVILLA"), by counsel, respectfully states:
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PREFATORY
Suspension of criminal proceedings on account of the existence
of a prejudicial question is settled in this jurisdiction, both under the
law and jurisprudence.
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In particular, Section 6, Rule 111 of the Rules of Court
authorizes the suspension of preliminary investigation and the
proceedings on any criminal complaint by reason of a prejudicial
question in a civil action, to wit:
"Sec. 6. Suspension by reason of prejudicial question. - A
petition for suspension of the s;riminal action based upon the
pendency of a prejudicial question in a civil action may be filed in
the office of the prosecutor or the court conducting the
preliminary investigation. When the criminal action has been filed
in court for trial, the petition to suspend shall be filed in the same
criminal action at any time-before the prosecution rests."
Clearly, by express provision of the Rules, suspension of
criminal action by reason of a prejudicial question is permitted as
early as the preliminary investigation stage of the proceedings. The
provisions of the first sentence of Section 6, Rule 111 now abrogate
the contrary rulings in Dasalta, et al. v. City Attorney, et al., L-17388,
30 May 1962, Flordelis, et al. v Castillo, et al., L-36703, 31July1974,
and Andaya, et at v. Provincial Fiscal of Surigao del Norte, et al., L-
29826, 30September1976.
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In Dreamwork Construction, Inc. v. Janiola, et al.,
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this
Honorable Court held:
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"In the instant case, Art. 36 of the Civil Code and Sec. 7 of Rule 111
of the Rules of Court are susceptible of an interpretation that would
harmonize both provisions of law. The phrase "previously instituted
civil action" in Sec. 7 of Rule 111 is plainly worded and is not
susceptible of alternative interpretations. The clause "before
any criminal prosecution 1nay be instituted or may
proceed" in Art. 36 of the Civil Code may, however, be
interpreted to mean that the motion to suspend the
criminal action may be filed during the preliminary
investigation with the public prosecutor or court conducting
the investigation, or during the trial with the court hearing the case.
This interpretation would harmonize Art. 36 of the Civil Code with
Sec. 7 of Rule 111 of the Rules of Court but also with Sec. 6 of Rule
111 of the Civil Code, which provides for the situations when
the motion to suspend the criminal action during the
preliminary investigation or during the trial may be tiled.
Sec. 6 provides:
SEC. 6. Suspension by reason of prejudicial
question.-A petition for suspension of the
criminal action based upon the pendency of a
prejudicial question in a civil action may be
filed in the office of the prosecutor or the
court conducting the preliminary
investigation. When the criminal action has been
Regalado, Florenz D., Remedial Law Compendium, Volume II, 11th Ed. (2008), p. 370.
G.R. No. 184861, 30 June 2099.
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filed in court for trial, the petition to suspend shall be
filed in the same criminal action at any time before
the prosecution rests."3
A prejudicial question is present where a civil action and a
criminal action are both and there exists in the former an
issue which 1nust be pre-emptively resolved before the criminal action
may proceed since howsoever the issue raised in the civil action is
resolved would be determinative juris et de jure of the guilt or
innocence of the accused in the criminal case. 4 A prejudicial question
in a civil action is one that is "based on a fact distinct and separate
from the crime but so intimately connected with it that it determines
the guilt or innocence of the accused."s It is one which arises in a case,
the resolution of which is a logical antecedent of the issue involved
therein and the cognizance of which pertains to another tribunal.
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Jurisprudential history? reveals that the Honorable Court has
consistently applied this provision. The reason is simple. No person
should be made to face the hassle and pain of a criminal prosecution
pending a civil case based on the saine facts and with intimately
related.issues determinative of the guilt or innocence of such person
until the civil case is finally i;esolved.
The rationale for the principle of prejudicial question is that
although it does not conclusively resolve the guilt or innocence of the
accused, it tests the sufficiency of the allegations in the complaint or
information in order to sustain the further prosecution of the criminal
case.
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Indeed, the purpose of suspension is to free the respondent or
the accused from going through the criminal proceedings, along with
the exhaustion of precious time and resources, only to find out later -
from the judgment in the civil case--that the case filed against
the respondent or the accused is groundless and cannot stand in
court. It is certainly prudent to first await the resolution of the civil
case.
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Emphasis and Underscoring supplied.
SyTiongShiou vs. SyChim 582 SCRA 517.
Donato v. Luna, G.R. No.L-53642, 15 April 1988, 160 SCRA 441, 445; Quiambao v.
Osorio, G.R. No.L-48157, 16 March 1988, 158 SCRA 674, 677-678; Ras v. Rasul, G.R.
Nos.L-50441-42, 18 September 1980, 100 SCRA 125, 127.
Omictin vs. Court of Appeals 512 SCRA 70.
See Donato v. Luna, G.R. No. L-53642, 15 April 1988, 160 SCRA 441, 445; Quiambao v.
Osorio, G.R. No. L".'.48157, 16 March 1988, 158 SCRA 674, 677-678; Ras v. Rasul, G.R.
Nos. L-50441-42, 18 September 1980, 100 SCRA 125, 127; Yap v. Paras, G.R. No. 101236,
30 January 1992, 205 SCRA 625, 631.
Philippine Agila Satellite, Inc. vs. Lichauco Osorio, G.R. No. L-48157, 16 March 1988, 158
SCRA 674, 677-678; Ras v. Rasul, G.R. Nos. L-50441-42, 18 September 1980, 100 SCRA
125, 127; Yap v. Paras, G.R. No. 101236, 30January1992, 205 SCRA 625, 63i.496 SCRA
588. .. '
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However, the Public Respondent, Office of the Owbudsman,
through its Special Panel of Investigators ("OMBUDSMAN"), in its
First Joint Order dated 28 January 2014 ("FIRST ASSAILED
ORDER") and Second Joint Order dated 3 March 2014 ("SECOND
ASSAILED ORDER") (cqllectively, "ASSAILED ORDERS") issued in
OMB-C-C-13-0316, entitled "National Bureau of Investigation and
Levito Baligod v. Ramon "Bong" Revilla, Jr., et al." and in OMB-C-C-
13-0395, entitled "Field Investigation Office v. Ramon "Bong"
Revilla, Jr., et al." (collectively, the "proceedings a quo"), gravely
abused its discretion when it blatantly disregarded the well-
established principles in the application of the rule on prejudicial
question as upheld in numerous cases by the Honorable Court by
denying SENATOR REVILLA's Motions-to Suspend Preliminary
Investigation both dated 15 January 2014 ("Motions to Suspend")
and his Motion for Reconsideration dated 3 February 2014
("Motion for Reconsideration").
As will be shown hereunder, the elements of a prejudicial
question are present in this case, which, based on law, the Rules of
Court and jurisprudence, warrant the immediate suspension of the
preliminary investigation being conducted by respondent
OMBUDSMAN in the prqceedings a quo.
In the civil case instituted by SENATOR REVILLA, entitled
"Senator Ramon ''Bong" Revilla, Jr. v. Benhur Luy, et al." docketed
as Civil Case No. BCV-2013-193, before the Regional Trial Court of
Bacoor, Cavite, which was filed prior to the filing of the Criminal
Complaints in the proceedings a quo, SENATOR REVILLA sought the
nullification of certain documents. Incidentally, these documents
sought to be nullified by SENATOR REVILLA in the prior civil case
are the same documents on
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which his involvement in the proceedings
a quo entirely depends.
Despite the clear presence of a prejudicial question, respondent
OMBUDSMAN pere1nptorily denied SENATOR REILLA's Motions to
Suspend, and resolved to continue with the proceedings a quo. Such
conduct of respondent OMBUDSMAN in disregarding the factual
circumstances surrounding SENATOR REVILLA's Motions to
Suspend, specifically t ~ pendency of the prior civil case concerning
intimately related issues, and the deliberate refusal to adhere to the
well-entrenched rule on prejudicial question, manifest an arbitrary,
capricious and whimsical exercise of discretion, which leads to no
other conclusion than that respondent OMBUDSMAN was bereft of
jurisdiction in issuing its ASSAILED ORDERS.
SENATOR REVILLA comes at the portals of this Honorable
Court not only to seek for the protection of his rights but also and
more importantly, to respectfully plead with the Honorable Court to
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di,rect respondent OMBUDSMAN to act within the bounds of its
: jurisdiction by applying the law, rules and jurisprudence as they are,
regardless of whether the resulting decision is popular or not. Indeed,
respondent OMBUDSMAN should act with utinost impartiality and
not be swayed by public opinion or pressure.
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Moreover, respondent OMBUDSMAN exhibited patent and
grave bias when it dis1nissed and refused to docket SENATOR
REVILLA' s Counter-Charge against certain individuals who are, as
the evidence reveals, the ones guilty of Plunder, on the mere basis
that entertaining such counter-charges would result in duplication of
functions and unduly burden respondent OMBUDSMAN.
Respondent OMBUDSMAN also rejected outright SENATOR
REVILLA's Counter-Cha_rge against the individuals who have been
included in the Witness Protection Program ("WPP") by the
Department of Justice ("DOJ''), which respondent OMBUDSMAN,
with evident bias and partiality, took as blanket immunity on all
charges against the said individuals.
By turning a blind eye to the evidence and even confession of
guilt of these individuals, and by adainantly proceeding to
preliminary investigation despite clear. presence of a prejudicial
question, respondent OMBDSMAN has violated and continues to
violate SENATOR REVILLA's constitutional rights to due process of
law and equal protection of the laws.
Thus, SENATOR REVILLA respectfully ~ k s the Honorable
Court's issuance of a writ of certiorari to annul the ASSAILED
ORDERS, as well as a writ of prohibition to direct the respondent
OMBUDSMAN to desist from further proceeding with the
proceedings a quo on account of a prejudicial question. In the
interim, SENATOR REViLLA respectfully pleads for the intervention
of this Honorable Court, by the issuance of a writ of preliminary
injunction and/ or a temporary restraining order, to enjoin
respondent OMBUDSMAN and all other person or persons acting on
its behalf, from proceeding with proceedings a quo, so as not to
prejudice the rights of SENATOR REVILLA pending resolution of the
instant Petition and so as not to render the instant Petition moot.
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NATURE OF THE PETITION
2.1. This is a Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition filed
pursuant to Sections 1 and 2, Rule 65 of the Rules of Court, to annul,
reverse and set aside the ASSAILED ORDERS issued by respondent
OMBUDSMAN in the proceedings a quo for having been issued with
grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of its
jurisdiction and to comm3:nd respondent OMBUDSMAN to desist
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.fro1ll further proceeding i11 the proceedings a quo on accou.11t of the
existence of a prejudicial question.
SENATOR REVILLA has formajJy
respondent OMBUDSMAN for certified true copy of the
ASSAILED ORDERS as the last paragraph of Section 1, Rule
65 of the Revised Rules of Court requires that such certified
copy should be attached to the Petition-only to be told that
his request is still under study and consideration and he
will accordingly be informed when such certified copy is
issued by respondent OMBUDSMAN.9
Considering the urgency of the instant Petition and
pending issuance by respondent OMBUDSMAN of a
certified copy of the: ASSAILED ORDERS, SENATOR
REVILLA is constrained to attach hereto and make integral
parts hereof as Annexes "A" and "B," respectively, the
duplicate originals that were served on him of the
ASSAILED ORDERS.
In Paras, et al., v. Paras, et al.,
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the Honorable Court
held that attachment of duplicate original of the Assailed
Order, instead of the certified true copy thereof, is
sufficient compliance with the requirement under Section 1,
Rule 65 of the Rules of Court. Even then, SENATOR
REVILLA undertakes to submit to the Honorable Court the
of the ASSAlLED as may respondent
OMBUDSMAN later issue as formally requested by him.
2.2. The FIRST ASSAILED ORDER, ANNEX "A" hereof,
denied SENATOR REVILLA's Motions to Suspend
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despite the clear
and indubitable presence of a prejudicial question, considering that
the resolution of the issue on the genuineness and due execution of
the documents raised in the previously instituted civil case necessarily
determines whether or not the proceedings a quo before respondent
OMBUDSMAN should proceed.
2_.3. The FIRST ASSAILED ORDER also perfunctorily
dismissed SENATOR REVILLA's Plunder charges against certain
individuals either per respondent OMBUDSMAN, said
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A copy of SENATOR REVILLA's letter request dated 10 March 2013, duly stamped
received by respondent OMBUDSMAN, is attached and made integral part hereof as
Special Annex.
G.R. No. 140713, 8 March 2011.
Copies of SENATOR REVILLA's Motions to Suspend both dated 15 January 2014 are
attached hereto as Annexes "C" and "D" and made integral parts hereof .
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charges will cat1se administrative inconvenience on its part
or the individuals indicted are covered by the DOJ's WPP.
2.4. The SECOND ASSAILED ORDER, Annex "B" hereof,
denied SENATOR REVILLA's Motion for Reconsideration
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without
considering the errors raised therein.
2.5. The ASSAILED ORDERS of respondent OMBUDSMAN
are contrary to law, rules and_ prevailing Jl1risprtJ.c1ence. Considering
that the existence of the grounds raised by SENATOR REVILLA in
support of his Motions to Suspend are clear and unmistakable, the
refusal of respondent OMBUDSMAN to suspend the proceedings a
quo is clearly attended with grave abuse of discretion which is
tantamount to lack or excess of jurisdiction. Further, considering that
respondent OMBUDSMAN is duty-bound to prosecute the
individuals subject of SENATOR REVILLA's Plunder charges, its
dismissal of these charges - at the first instance and on flimsy
grounds - amounts to grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or
excess of jurisdiction.
III
TIMELINESS OF THE PETITION AND
STATEMENT OF MATERIAL DATES
3.1. On January 2014, SENATOR REVILLA the
FIRST ASSAILED ORDER issued by respondent OMBUDSMAN in
the proceedings a quo, denying his Motions to Suspend. On 3
February 2014, or five (5) days after such receipt, SENATOR
REVILLA filed the Motion for Reconsideration of the FIRST
ASSAILED ORDER.
3.2. On 7 March 2014, SENATOR REVILLA received the
SECOND ASSAILED ORDER denying his Motion for
Reconsideration.
3.3. Pursuant to Section 4, Rule 65 of the Rules of Court,
SENATOR has sixty (60) days fro1n notice of the denial of
its Motion for Reconsideration, or until 6 May 2014, within which to
file a Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition.
3-4 Thus, this Petition is timely filed.
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A copy of SENATOR REVILLA's Motion for Reconsideration dated 3 February 2014 is
attached hereto as Annex "E" and made an integral part hereof.
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IV
THE PARTIES
4 ~ : SENATOR REVILLA is of legal age, married, with
residential address at 305 Aguinaldo Highway, City of Bacoor, Cavite.
SENATOR REVILLA is an incumbent Senator of the Republic of the
Philippines, having held such position for nine (9) years now. He is
currently the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Public Services,
and member of the Senate Committees on Cooperatives, Finance,
National Defense and Security, Public Information and Mass Media,
Public Works, Ways and Means, Cultural Communities, Environment
and Natural Resources, Foreign Relations, Public Order and
Dangerous Drugs, and Urban Panning, Housing and Resettlement.
J?rior to being elected Senator, SENATOR REVILIA was elected
Vice-Governor of the Province of Cavite in the 1995 elections.
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Subsequently, due to the resignation of the then Cavite Governor
Epimaco Velasco ("Velasco''), SENATOR REVILLA assumed Velasco's
vacant position and became the Governor of Cavite. In the 1998 local
elections, SENATOR REVILLA ran for, and was elected, Governor of
Cavite, which he served the full term, or from 1998 to 2001. In 2002,
SENATOR REVILIA was appointed by then President Gloria
Macapagal Arroyo ("PGMA") as the Chairman of the Videogram
Regulatory Board (now Optical Media Board), which he held until
2004.
At present, SENATOR REVILIA is the Chairman of the Lakas-
CMD political party, and is pri1ned to be the party's standard bearer
in the 2016 Presidential Elections. The Lakas-CMD party is
considered as an opposition party of the political party of the current
administration.
For this case, SENATOR REVJLIA may be served with
pleadings, orders, and other processes of this Honorable Court
through the undersigned counsel at the 5th Floor, Park Trade Centre,
1716 Investment Drive, Madrigal Business Park, Alabang, Muntinlupa
City, Philippines.
4.2. Respondent OMBUDSl\lt\N is impleaded as a public
respondent in this Petition for having issued the ASSAILED ORDERS
and for proceeding with the proceedings a quo, despite the presence
of a prejudicial question,with grave abuse of discretion amounting to
lack or excess of jurisdiction. It may be served with pleadings,
motions, notices, orders, resolutions, judg1nent and other processes
of the Honorable Court at the Ombudsman Bldg., Agham Road,
Government Center, North Triangle, Diliman, Quezon City.
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4.3. Respondent NATIONAL BUREAU QF
INVESTIGATION ("NBI") is a Complainant in the proceedings a
quo, particularly in OMB-C-C-13-0316, and may be served with
pleadings, motions, notices, orders, resolutions, judgment and other
processes of this Honorable Court at its office at NBI Building, Taft
Avenue, Ermita, Manila.
4.4. Respondent A ~ LEVITO D., BALIGOD ("Atty.
Baligod") is an individual Complainant in the proceedings a quo,
particularly in OMB-C-C-13-0316, and may be served with pleadings,
motions, notices, orders, resolutions, judgment and other processes
of this Honorable Court at 3/F The Lydia Bldg., 39 Polaris St., Bel-Air,
Makati.
4.5. Respondent FIELD INVESTIGATION OFFICE
("FIQ") of respondent OMBUDSMAN is the Complainant in OMB.-C-
C-13-0395 in the proceedings a quo, and may be served with
pleadings, motions, notices, orders, resolutions, judgment and other
processes of this Honorable Court at the Ombudsman Bldg., Agham
Road, Government Center, North Triangle, Dilhnan, Quezon City.
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STATEMENT OF THE FACTS
AND OF THE CASE
5.1. In the early part of the year 2013, news broke out about
the so-called Priority Development Assistance Fund ("PDAF") scam.
The modus of the scam was reported to begin with a lawmaker's
designation or endorsement of fake Non-Governmental
Organizations ("NGOs") controlled by a certain Janet Lim-Napoles
("Napoles"). According to news reports, these NGOS are the
recipients of the lawmakers' PDAF allocations for the purpose of
implementing projects authorized in the Department of Budget and
Management ("DBM") Project Menu. These projects, however, are
said to be either unimplemented or under implemented, so that the
PDAF funds supposed to be allocated therefor were misappropriated
and converted to the personal use of the lawmaker, Napoles, and
other implicated individuals through allotting and dividing such
funds among them in accordance with an alleged sharing scheme
initially agreed upon.
5.2. The publicity of the so-called PDAF scam was initiated
with the revelations made by self-styled "whistleblowers," led by
Benhur Luy, who claimed to have directly participated in the scam
itself by their confession of their having themselves falsify the
documents used in the avaihnent of PDAF allocations of lawmakers
("PDAF Documents") and forged the signatures thereon, including
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the signatu,res of the law1nakers and their representatives. The
whistleblowers also confessed to having withdrawn the money from
each of the PDAF availment, albeit they claimed to have turned over
the money to Napoles and on instructions of the latter, they delivered
to the lawmakers or their staff or representatives their share or
commission or kickback. Among the lawinakers alleged by these
"whistleblowers" to have had a part in the PDAF scam was SENATOR
REVILLA, whose signature and the signature of his staff, Atty.
Richard Cambe ("Atty. Cambe"), they confessed to have forged.
5.3. According to these "whistle blowers," SENATOR
REVILLA authorized the release of his PDAF allocations to Napoles-
related NGOs in order to misappropriate and convert them into his
and co-conspirators' personal use, by taking part in the said amounts
that were supposedly allocated for fake government projects. The
"whistleblowers" supported these statements by admitting their direct
participation in the process, as well as through documents
purportedly showing that SENATOR REVILLA approved the
carrying-out of the said scheme.
5-4 When the said PDAF scam came out in the media early
last year, SENATOR REVILLA immediately denied any involve1nent
therein and declared his willingness to join in the investigation and
his conducting his own investigation into the alleged scam towards
ferreting out the truth, prosecuting all those responsible for it, and
clearing his name.
5.5. Based on SENATOR REVILLA's own independent
investigation that included his referring all the PDAF Documents for
expert examination, SENATOR REVILLA filed the Civil Case against
the "whistleblowers" and others who appear to have taken part in the
alleged scam. The Complaint13 was filed with the Regional Trial Court
of Bacoor City ("RTC Bacoor") on 13 September 2013 in Civil Case
BCV-2013-193 praying for the nullification of the PDAF Documents,
for accounting and for the defendants therein to return to the
Government the amount stolen by the1n, in the total amount of
P502.89 million ("Civil Complaint" or "Civil Case").
5.6. On :t6 September 20:13, t t y ~ Cambe filed a Motion for
Leave to File Complaint-in-Intervention in Civil Case No. BCV-2013-
193. In his Complaint-in-Intervention, Atty. Cambe vehemently
denied: (a) signing the PDAF Documents, (b) having any knowledge
or participation in their preparation or use, and (c) having gained any
1.:3 A copy of SENATOR REVILLA's Complaint filed before RTC Bacoor is attached hereto as
Annex "F' and made an integral part hereof.
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. benefit therefrom. Atty. Cam be prayed tbat tbe PP.AF Docl1_me11ts be
declared by the court as null and void ab initio.
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5. 7. On 20 September 2013, the RTC Bacoor issued an Order
: granting Atty. Cambe's Motion for Leave to File Complaint-in-
Intervention.15
5.8. The main thrust of the Civil Case is the nullification of the
PDAF Documents as these PDAF Docunients were executed without
SENATOR REVILLA's (or Atty. Cambe's) knowledge and iuthority,
and the return to the govern1nent by the defendants of the PDAF
moneys they confessed to have taken and appropriated for
themselves.
5.9. SENATOR REVILLA seeks their nullification as he
determined, upon his own investigation and in consultation with
handwriting expert and an expert in signature verification, Mr. Roger
Azores, and likewise confirmed by the other "whistleblowers'' that
such signatures are products of forgery or made without their
authority.
5.10. As found by Mr. Azores, the signatures appearing in the
PDAF Documents (which support the Criminal Complaints of
Complainants in the proceedings a quo and serve as the only direct
link to SENATOR REVILLA in the alleged scheme) are all forged.
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5.11. More particularly, as presented in the Civil Co1nplaint,
Mr. Azores concluded that the signatures of SENATOR REVILLA in
the following documents are forgeries:
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Letter addressed to Mr. Antonio Y. Ortiz,
Director Ge_neral Technology and Livelihood
Resource Center dated 27 Nov. 2007
Letter addressed to Hon. Arthur C. Yap,
Secretary Department of Agriculture dated 27
Nov. 2007.
Letter addressed to Hon. Gondelina G. Amata,
President, National Livelihood Development
Co oration dated 27 Feb. 2009
Letter addressed to Hon. Gondelina G. Alnata,
A copy of Atty. Richard's Cambe's Complaint-in-Intervention is attached hereto as
Annex "G" and made an integral part hereof.
A copy the 20 September 2013 Order is attached hereto as Annex "H" and made an
integral part hereof.
Copies of the results of the examination conducted by Mr. Azores are attached as Annexes
"I" to "I-7" and made an integral parts hereof.
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President, National Livelihood Development
Corporation dated 28 Apr. 2009
Pangkabuhayan Foundation Inc.,
Acco1nplish1nent Report dated in the year
2009
Pangkabuhayan Foundation Inc.,
Accomplishment Report dated in the year
2009
Pangkabuhayan Foundation Inc., List of
Beneficiaries Livelihood Project, Sen. Ramon
"Bong" Revilla Jr., attendance sheet conduct
of training dated 3-5 Oct. 2009
Pangkabuhayan Foundation Inc., List of
Beneficiaries Livelihood Project, Sen. Ramon
"Bong" Revilla Jr., dated in the year 2009
Pangkabuhayan Foundation Inc., List of
Beneficiaries Livelihood Project, Sen. Rainon
"Bong" Revilla Jr. dated in the year 2009.
Vegetable Growing Pro grain and Planting
Materials distribution Project Ill the
Municipality of Akbar, Sulu, Livelihood
Project of Sen. Rainon "Bong" Revilla Jr.,
dated in the year 2009.
Pangkabuhayan Foundation Inc.,
Accomplishment Report ROCS-09-02426
dated in the year 2009
Project Title: Vegetable Growing Program
Backyard Vegetable Farming, Office of Sen.
Ramon "Bong" Revilla, Jr., implementing
agency-Zamboanga Rubber Estate Corp.
dated in the year 2009.
Certificate of Acceptance dated 12 March
2008
Senate Pasay City, Office of Sen. Ramon
"Bong" Revilla Jr., Certificate of Acceptance
dated in the year 2009.
Senate Pasay City, Office of Sen. Ramon
"Bong" Revilla Jr., Certificate of Acceptance
dated in the year 16 Sept. 2009.
Letter addressed to Mr. Antonio Y. Ortiz,
Director General, Technology and Livelihood
Resource Center dated 10 April 2007.
5.12. It is clear, under the results of the examination, that the
PDAF Documents were entered into or executed without the direct or
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;indirect participation or knowledge of SENATOR REVILLA. Hence,
one of the prayers in the. Civil Complaint is the declaration of nullity
'-of the PDAF Documents:
"PRAYER
WHEREFORE, Plaintiff Revilla respectfully prays that, after due
and proper trial on the merits, the Honorable Court render
judgment:
1) Under the First ~ a u s e of Action, declaring the PDAF
Documents null and void;
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Plaintiff Revilla further prays for such other relief as may be
deemed just and equitable in the premises."
5.13. In his Civil Complaint, SENATOR REVILLA invoked
Articles 1346 and 1409 of the New Civil Code, which provide that
simulated and fictitious contracts are inexistent and void from the
beginning:
"Art. 1346. An absolutely simulated or fictitious contract
~ void. A relative simulation, when it does not prejudice a third
person and is not intended for any purpose contrary to law, morals,
good customs, public order or public policy binds the parties to
their real agreement."
"Art. 1409. The following contracts are inexistent and void
from the beginning: i
a. Those whose cause, object or purpose is contrary to law,
morals, good customs, public order or public policy;
b. Those which are absolutely simulated or fictitious;
c. Those whose cause or object did not exist at the time of the
transaction;
d. Those whose object is outside the commerce of men;
e. Those which contemplate an impossible service;
f. Those where . t;h.e intention of the parties relative to the
principal object of the contract cannot be ascertained;
g. Those expressly prohibited or declared void by law.
These contracts cannot be ratified. Neither can the right to
set up the defense of illegality be waived."
5.14. SENATOR REVILLA cited therein several cases decided
by the Honorable Court to support his theory, among them, is Valerio
v. Refresca,17 where the Honorable Court held that a contract is null
and void if parties thereto : do not intend to be bound at all by its
stipulations, thus:
1
7 G.R. No. 163687, March 28, 2006, 485 SCRA 494, 500-501; citing Loyola v. Court of
Appeals, 383 Phil. 171 (2000), and Balite v. Lim, 487 Phil. 281 (2004).
13
15
"In absolute simulation, there is .!! colorable contract but it
has no substance as the parties have no intention to be
bound bx it. The main characteristic of an absolute simulation is
that the apparent contract is not really desired or intended to
produce legal effect or in any way alter the juridical situation of the
parties. As a result, an absolutely simulated m: fictitious
contract is void, and the parties may recover from each
other what they may have given under the contract.
However, if the parties state a false cause in the contract to conceal
their real agreement, the contract is relatively simulated and the
parties are still bound by their real agreement. Hence, where the
essential requisites of a contract are present and the simulation
refers only to the content or terms of the contract, the agreement is
absolutely binding and enforceable between the parties and their
successors in interest."18
5.15. On the other hand, in Solomon v. Intermediate Appellate
Court,19 Vda. De Portugal v. Intermediate Appellate Court,
20
Garanciang v. Garanciang,
21
and Lacsamana v. Court of Appeals,
22
the Honorable Court ruled that contracts executed by virtue of a
forged signature or fictitious deeds are void ab initio. The absence of
the essential requisite of consent rendered the contract inexistent and
subject to the declaration of nullity of the court.
2
3
5.16. SENATOR REVILLA also obtained the services of another
expert, Atty. Desiderio Pagui, to verify the findings of Mr. Azores.
Atty. Pagui confirmed that the PDAF Documents bearing the
signatures of SENATOR REVILLA and his purported authorized
representative, Atty. Cambe, are forgeries.
2
4
5.17. On 16 September 2013, or days subsequent to the
institution of the Civil Case filed by SENATOR REVILLA before a
Regional Trial Court with competent jurisdiction, the NBI and Atty.
Baligod filed their Complaint-Affidavit of even date with respondent
OMBUDSMAN, which is now the subject of OMB-C-C-13-0316 ("First
Criminal Complaint").
2
s
5.18. Subsequently, on 18 Nove1nber 2013, the FIO filed its
own, but similar, Complaint, which is now the subject of OMB-C-C-
13-0395 in the proceedings a quo ("Second Criminal Complaint")
(collectively, the "Criminal Co1nplaints").
2
6
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
Emphasis and underscoring supplied.
G.R. No. 70263, 14 May 1990, 185 SCRA 352, 363-364.
G.R. No. L-73564, 25 March 1988, 159 SCRA 178, 183.
138 Phil. 237, 239 (1969).
351 Phil. 526, 533-534 (1998).
Gochan and Sons Realty Corp, et al vs. Heirs of Raymundo Baba, et al., G.R. No. 138945,
August 19, 2003. .
Copies of the results of the examination conducted by Atty. Pagui are attached as Annexes
"J" to "J-1" and made integral parts hereof.
A Copy of the NBI-Complaint is attached as Annex "K" and made an integral part
hereof.
A Copy of the FIO-Complaint is (lttached as Annex "L" and made an integral part hereof.
14
1G
I
' I
5.19. The Criminal Complaints charge SENATOR REVILLA
'th the crime of Plunder under Republic Act No. 7080, otherwise
. own as "An Act Defining and Penalizing the Crime of Plunder"
.jPlunder Act"), who, while being a Senator of the Republic of the
hilippines, allegedly designated or endorsed bogus NGOs controlled
y Napoles to be the recipients of his PDAF for the purpose of
implementing projects authorized in the DBM Project Menu. Per the
,Criminal Complaints, these projects, however, are alleged to be either
:.unimplemented or under implemented, so that the proceeds of the
PDAF supposed to be allocated therefor are misappropriated and
converted to the personal use of SENATOR REVILLA, Napoles, and
.other implicated individuals by having divided among them the
. amount in accordance with the alleged scheme initially agreed upon.
5.20. The Criminal Complaints, outline, describe and narrate
such scheme (with lawmakers, in general) on the basis of interviews
and sworn statements submitted to the NBI by Benhur Luy, Merlina
Sufias, Gertrudes L. Luy, Nova Kay Batal-Macalintal, Elena S.
Abdundo and Avelina C. Lingo. Through such scheme, the Criminal
Complaints allege that, SENATOR REVILLA, abusing his public
position as such, exceeded his authority by designating or endorsing
NGOs, and amassed and accumulated ill-gotten wealth in the total
amount of P224,512,500.oo, purportedly representing the
commission or rebate received from his PDAF from 2006 to 2010, in
conspiracy with Napoles and Implementing Agencies.
5.21. In support of their allegations, the respondents herein,
namely the NBI and Atty. Baligod, and the FIO submitted
documentary evidence, which are mainly, the PDAF Documents
attached to the Commission on Audit's Letter ("COA Letter") dated
08 July 2011, which letter requested SENATOR REVILLA to confirm
whether the signatures appearing on the PDAF documents are those
of SENATOR REVILLA or of one of his staff, Atty. Cambe. The PDAF
Documents consist of SAROs, MOAs, NCAs, endorsement letters,
project proposals, project activity reports, project profiles, inspection
and acceptance reports, disbursement reports, disburse1nent
vouchers, reports, acknowledgement receipts,
delivery reports, and certificates of acceptance.
5.22. Considering that the respondents are using in the
proceedings a quo before the respondent OMBUDSMAN the same
PDAF Documents, which as earlier mentioned, the whistleblowers
themselves admitted to have falsified and the signatures thereon
forged by them, which forgery was confinned by two handwriting
experts and which documents, were and continue to be subject of a
Civil Case for nullification, to link SENATOR REVILLA to an alleged
conspiracy of converting, misappropriating, and misusing his PDAF
15
1 r7 \
allocation, SENATOR REVILLA filed on 16 January 2014, Motions to
.. Suspend the Preliminary Investigation in the proceedings a quo.
5.22.1 In his Motions to Suspend, SENATOR REVILLA
prayed for the immediate suspension of the proceedings a quo
before the respondent OMBUDSMAN, on the ground that the
previously instituted Civil Case presents a prejudicial question
that must first be resolved. The Civil Case is particularly
relevant as the PDAF Documents, subject of the Civil Case for
nullification, appear to be the only direct link of SENATOR
REVILLA to the crime of Plunder as defined and punished
under Republic Act No. 7080. Indeed, the existence of the
PDAF Documents, particularly those appearing to be signed by
him (or his purported representative, Atty. Cambe) is being
utilized to bridge a link between the alleged scheme and
SENATOR REVILLA. On the other hand, as advanced in his
Civil Complaint, SENATOR REVILLA did not intend to be
bound by the stipulations in the PDAF Documents supporting
the Criminal Complaints as he is absolutely not a party to any of
them as his or Atty. Cambe's purported signatures appearing on
the PDAF Documents ,are forgeries.
I
5.23. Hence, SENATOR REVILLA moved for the suspension of
the preliminary investigation and any proceeding before respondent
OMBUDSMAN in the proceedings a quo until after the Civil Case has
been resolved with finality, pursuant to Section 6 of Rule 111 of the
Rules of Court. To reiterate, the Civil Case and the proceedings a quo
involve the same facts and intimately connected issues necessitating
the resolution of the Civil Case before the criminal case in the
proceedings a quo may proceed.
5.24. Likewise, on the same day of 16 January 2014, SENATOR
REVILLA filed two separate Counter-Affidavits.
2
7 In his Counter-
Affidavits, aside from refuting the allegations against him in the
Criminal Complaints, SENATOR REVILLA filed Counter-Charges for
Plunder against his co-Respondents in the Cri1ninal Coin plaints for
their acts in relation to the PDAF scam ("Counter-Charge") and
against the "whistleblowers," led by Benhur Luy.
I
5.25. On 28 January 2014, the respondent OMBUDSMAN
issued its FIRST ASSAILED ORDER denying SENATOR REVILLA's
Motions to Suspend, reasoning, among others, that no prejudicial
question exists since forgery or falsification, which is subject of the
Civil Case, is not a necessary element of Plunder, Malversation and
27
Copies of the SENATOR REVILLA's Counter-Affidavits are attached as Annexes "M" to
"M-1" and made integral parts hereof.
16
.. )\'subject of the preliminary investigation in the proceedings
OMBUDSMAN also justified its order of denying
qns to Suspend on the ground that any declaration of nullity
Documents in the Civil Case will only affect these
,nts' probative value and that there are other pieces of
.'e"in support of the case against SENATOR REVILLA. Lastly,
BUDSMAN ruled that the Civil Case was prematurely filed
ere. was as yet no "formal charge" in court to ask for the
cation.of the PDAF Documents .
. ,x:.5.26. In the same FIRST ASSAILED ORDER, respondent
BUDSMAN also dismissed outright SENATOR REVILLA's
Jrter.:.charge against respondents De1inis L. Cunanan, Antonio Y.
iz, Alan A. Javellana, Gondelina G. Amata, Salvador Salacup,
ylene T. Encarnacion, Nemesio Pablo, Evelyn De Leon, Jocelyn
jc)rato, John Raymund de Asis and Ronaldo John Lim merely on the
'iasis that the factual allegations in SENATOR REVILLA's Counter-
arge of Plunder are identical to those already contained in the
nminal Complaints, and to entertain SENATOR REVILLA's plunder
}barge against the said individuals would create administrative
fr1convenience on the part of respondent OMBUDSMAN. Respondent
OMBUDSMAN likewise dismissed the Counter-Charge against
:Benhur K. Luy, Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina Sula on the sole basis of
::their inclusion in the DOJ's WPP.
5.27. On 3 February 2014, SENATOR REVILLA filed a Motion
: Jor Reconsideration of the FIRST ASSAILED ORDER ("Motion for
Reconsideration").
5.28. On 3 March 2014, respondent OMBUDSMAN issued its
SECOND ASSAILED ORDER, which denied the Motion for
Reconsideration.
5.29. Hence, this Petition.
VI
ISSUES
A. Whether or not public respondent
OMBUDSMAN gravely abused its discretion
amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction when
it refused to suspend the proceedings a quo
despite the existence of a prejudicial question;
and,
B. Whether or not public respondent
OMBUDSMAN gravely abused its discretion
17
19
amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction when
it perfunctorily dismissed SENATOR REVILLA's
Plunder Charge against Dennis L. Cunanan,
Antonio Y. Ortiz, Alan A. Javellana, Gondelina G.
Amata, Salvador Salacup, Mylene T. Encarnacion,
Nemesio Pablo, De Leon, Jocelyn Piorato,
John Raymund de Asis, Ronaldo John Lim and
Benhur K. Luy, Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina Sula
despite the presence of clear evidence against
them, in violation of SENATOR REVILLA's right
to equal protection.
VII
GROUNDS IN SUPPORT OF THE PETITION
A. RESPONDENT OMBUDSMAN COMMITTED
GRAVE ERROR AND ACTED WITH GRAVE
ABUSE OF DISCRETION WHEN IT
CAPRICIOUSLY, WHIMSICALLY, AND
ARBITRARILY SENATOR REVILLA'S
MOTIONS TO SUSPEND, UPON ITS ERRONEOUS
RULING THAT NO PREJUDICIAL QUESTION
EXISTS TO JUSTIFY THE SUSPENSION OF
PRELIMINARY INVESTIGATION IN THE
PROCEEDINGS A QUO ON SENATOR REVILLA.
a. The elements of a prejudicial question
are present in these cases; hence, respondent
OMBUDSMAN should have immediately
suspended the preliminary investigation on
SENATOR REVILLA;
b. The finding of respondent
OMBUDSMAN that there is no prejudicial
question since forgery or falsification is not a
necessary element of Plunder, Malversation
2
9
and Section 3 (e) of R.A. No. 3019, is grossly
erroneous and not in any way determinative of
the existence of prejudicial question;
c. The falsified PDAF Documents are the
only evidence linking SENATOR REVILLA to the
alleged PDAF scam and the only basis of the
2
9 The NBI Complaint charges only the crime of Plunder while the FIO Complaint charges
the crime of Plunder and.Violation of Section 3 (e) of R.A. 3019. Malversation is not
among the charges in any of the complaints.
18
alleged whistleblowers in implicating him to the
said scam;
d. The non-inclusion of the alleged 20 July
2011 Commission on Audit ("COA") Confirmation
letter in the Civil Case does not make the actions
of SENATOR REVILLA "highly suspect," much
less change the fact that there exists a prejudicial
question to warrant the suspension of the
preliminary investigation as against SENATOR
REVILLA; and,
e. SENATOR REVILLA's Motions to
Suspend were not prematurely filed. Contrary to
respondent OMBUDSMAN's finding, SENATOR
REVILLA need -not wait for a "formal charge"
against him to be filed in court so he can seek the
nullification of the PDAF Documents in the Civil
Case, and move for the suspension of the criminal
proceedings on the ground of prejudicial
question.
B. RESPONDENT OMBUDSMAN GRAVELY
ERRED AND ACTED WITHOUT OR IN EXCESS
OF JURISDICTION AND WITH GRAVE ABUSE
OF DISCRETION IN DISMISSING OUTRIGHT
SENATOR REVILLA'S COUNTER-CHARGE
AGAINST DENNIS L. CUNANAN, ANTONIO Y.
ORTIZ, ALAN A. JAVELLANA, GONDELINA G.
AMATA, SALVADOR SALACUP, MYLENE T.
ENCARNACION, NEMESIO PABLO, EVELYN DE
LEON, JOCELYN PIORATO, JOHN RAYMUND DE
ASIS AND RONALDO JOHN LIM, BENHUR K.
LUY, MERLINAP. SuNASAND MARINA SULA.
VIII
DISCUSSION
8.1. Grave abuse of discretion is the exercise of jurisdiction in
an arbitrary, capricious, whimsical, or despotic manner by reason of
passion or personal hostility, so patent and gross as to amount to
evasion of a positive duty or virtual refusal to perform a duty enjoined
by law.3 In relation to the proceedings before respondent
3 Ramsical, Jr. vs. Sandiganbayan, et al., G.R. Nos. 140576-99, 13 December 2004, 146
SCRA166.
19
21
. I
MBUDSMAN, the Honorable Court in Olairez v. Sandiganbayan3
1
'pquently states:
"Thus, it has been consistently held that it is not for this
Court to review the Ombudsman's paramount discretion in
prosecuting or dismissing a complaint filed before his office. In
Ocampo, W vs. Ombudsman, the Court has ratiocinated:
'The rule is based not only upon respect for the investigatory
and prosecutory powers granted by the Constitution to the
Office of the Ombudsman but upon practicality as well.
Otherwise, the functions of the courts will be grievously
hampered by innumerable petitions assailing the dismissal
of investigatory proceedings conducted by the Office of the
Ombudsman with regard to complaints filed before it, in
much the same way that the courts would be extremely
swamped if they could be compelled to review the exercise of
discretion on the part of the fiscals or prosecuting attorneys
each time they decide to file an information in court or
dismiss a complaint by a private complainant.'
There is, however, one important exception to the
above rule, and it would be when grave abuse of discretion
on the part of the Ombudsman in either prosecuting or
dismissing a case before it is evident. In this event, the act
of the Ombudsman can justifiably be assailed. "3
2
8.2. The Honorable Court has also held that "grave abuse of
discretion" means there was an evasion of a positive duty or where
the power is exercised in an arbitrary and despotic manner by reason
of passion and personal hostility, thus:
"This exercise of discretion is not unbridled, however, especially
when attended with grave abuse. Grave abuse of discretion denotes
"abuse of discretion too patent and gross as to amount to an evasion
of a positive duty, or a virtual refusal to perform the duty enjoined
or act in contemplation of law, or where the power is exercised in an
arbitrary and despotic manner by reason of passion: and personal
hostility.'' It is present when there is capricious, whimsical, and
arbitrary exercise of judgment, which in the eyes of the law
amounts to lack of jurisdiction."33
8.3. As will be shown hereunder, respondent OMBUDSMAN
patently acted in an arbitrary and despotic manner by reason of
passion and personal hostility when it decided to deny SENATOR
REVILLA's prayer for suspension of the proceedings despite the clear
presence of a prejudicial question. Respondent OMBUDSMAN also
patently acted in an arbitrary and despotic manner by reason of
passion and personal hostility when it dismissed SENATOR
3
1
G.R. No. 148030, 10 March 2003, 398 SCRA 732.
3
2
Ibid, at 739.
33 Bernardo v. Tan, G.R. No. 185491, 11July2012.
20
. LLA's Counter-Charge against obviously guilty individuals
ite the undeniable presence of evidence against them. Such
AILED ORDERS must be reversed, annulled and set aside by the
orable Court.
A. RESPONDENT OMBUDSMAN
COMMITIED GRAVE ERROR AND ACTED
WITH GRAVE ABUSE. OF DISCRETION
WHEN IT CAfRICIOUSLY, WHIMSICALLY,
AND ARBITRARILY DENIED SENATOR
REVILLA'S MOTIONS TO SUSPEND UPON
ITS ERRONEOUS RULING THAT NO
PREJUDICIAL QUESTION EXISTS TO
JUSTIFY THE SUSPENSION OF
PRELIMINARY INVESTIGATION IN THE
PROCEEDINGS A QUO ON SENATOR
REVILLA.
, .. Respondent . OMBUDSMAN denied SENATOR REVILLA's
:} Motions to Suspend upon its erroneous ruling that there exists no
.prejudicial question warranting the suspension of the proceedings a
quo.34 Respondent OMBUDSMAN's reasoning is without any basis
. and doctrinally infirm.
a. The elements of a prejudicial
question are present in these cases;
hence, the respondent OMBUDSMAN
should have immediately suspended
the preliminary investigation on
SENATOR REVILLA.
84. Section 7 of Rule 111 of the Rules of Court on prejudicial
question states:
"Sec. 7. Elements of prejudicial question. - The elements of a
prejudicial questions are: (a) the previously instituted civil
action involves an issue similar or intimately related to
the issue raised in the subsequent criminal action. and (b)
the resolution of such issue determines whether or not the
criminal action may proceed."
8.5. Thus, for a civil action (such as the Civil Case in Bacoor)
to be considered prejudicial to a crhninal case (such as the Criminal
Complaints subject of the proceedings a quo) to warrant the
suspension of the criminal proceedings until the final resolution of
the civil action, the following requisites must be present:
34 Joint Order dated 28 January 2014, pp. 5-10.
21
23
a. There is a previofsly instituted civil case;
b. Such civil case involves facts inthnately related to those
upon which the criminal prosecution would be based;
c. In the resolution of the issue or issues raised in the civil
action, the guilt or innocence of the accused would
necessarily be determined; and
d. The jurisdiction to try said question must be lodged in
another tribunal.
. 8.6. All the aforementioned elements of a prejudicial question
are present insofar as SENATOR REVILLA is concerned.
' ) ~ ... .
8.7. First. The Civil Case is a previously instituted civil
'action. The Civil Case was filed by SENATOR REVILLA on 13
September 2013, while ~ h e Cri1ninal Co1nplaint for Plunder was
:/filed by the NBI, before respondent OMBUDSMAN, only on 16
'.'.September 2013; while the Criminal Coin plaint filed by the FIO,
;,;. was filed on a much later date or on 18 November 2013. It is,
. therefore, clear that the Civil Case was commenced prior to the
institution of the Criminal Complaints before respondent
.OMBUDSMAN.
8.8. Second. The issue in the Civil Case is similar or
intimately related to the issue raised in the pending criminal actions
in the proceedings a quo. Contrary to respondent OMBUDSMAN's
finding, it is of no moment that SENATOR REVILLA is not being
charged with the crimes of Falsification of Official Documents and the
use thereof, as defined by Articles 171and172 of the Revised Penal
Code. To warrant the suspension of preliminary investigation or
criminal prosecution due to a prejudicial question, complete identity
of actions between the criminal action and the civil case is not
necessary. There is no requirement that the actions should share
elements. What is required is that there is an intimate
connection between the two proceedings such that the
resolution of the civil case is determinative of the guilt or
innocence of the respondent or accused in the criminal
case. Such is the case here.
that:
8.9. The Honorable Court in Marbella-Bobis v. Bobis3s ruled
"A prejudicial question is one which arises in a case, the resolution
of which, is a logical antecedent of the issue involved therein. It is a
question based on a fact distinct and separate from the
35 G.R. No. 138509, 31July2000, 336 SCRA 747.
22
e but so intimate! connected with it that it
etermines the uilt or innocence of the accused. It must
ppear not only that the civil case involves facts upon which the
.minal action is based, but also that the resolution of the issues
aised in the civil action would necessarily be determinative of the
riminal case. Consequently, the defense must involve an issue
or intimately related to the same issue raised in the criminal
a.ction and its resolution determinative of whether or not the latter
action may proceed."36
/ Rio. On one hand, the main thrust of the Civil Case is the
1!fication of documents supposedly signed by SENATOR REVILLA
,, .Atty. Cambe, and other related documents ("PDAF Documents"),
.. Jhrespect to the PDAF allocation of SENATOR REVILLA's office.
PDAF Documents consist, among others, of SAROs, MOAs,
QAs, endorsement letters, project proposals, project activity reports,
profiles, inspection and acceptance reports, disbursement
disbursement vouchers, accomplishment reports,
tknowledgement receipts, delivery reports, and certificates of
acceptance. These PDAF Documents contain forged signatures of
... REVILLA (and of Atty. Cam be), a conclusion supported by
:Xpert testimonies. Thus, the Civil Case of SENATOR REVILLA seeks,
among others, to obtain a judicial declaration that the said PDAF
'Documents are null and void because SENATOR REVILLA (and Atty.
1Cambe) had no participation in their execution, and hence, have no
1
iiH91owledge of the underlying transactions, other related documents,
i\vhich while not containing their signatures are related to those that
1}bore their purported signatures, and the actual existence of all these
'. documents. :
8.11. On the other hand, in the Criminal Complaints, these
PDAF Documents appear to be herein respondents' main pieces of
evidence, and are the sole basis to create a direct link (albeit
ineffectual) between SENATOR REVILLA and the alleged PDAF
8.12. Further, one of the reliefs sought in the Civil Complaint is
to compel the respondents therein to return the amount of money
they received through the use of the falsified PDAF Documents, thus:
"PRAYER
WHEREFORE, Plaintiff Revilla respectfully prays that, after
due and proper trial on the merits, the Honorable Court render
judgment:
xxx:
Ibid, at 751 to 752; emphasis and underscoring supplied.
23
25
,2) Under the Second Cause of Action, directing Defendants to
. account for and return to the Government any and all
amounts they received through the use of null and void
PDAF Documents; X:xx"
8.13. If the RTC Bacoor, a court with competent jurisdiction,
tliat the respondents in the Civil Case alone are liable to return
Oney allegedly siphoned off from the coffers of the government,
;:,there would be a logical conclusion that SENATOR REVILLA is
''party to the alleged PDAF scam. Indeed, the Civil Case and the
Complaints not be more intricately related than that.
, 8.14. Third. The resolution of the issue or issues raised in the
Vil case would necessarily determine the guilt or innocence of
ENATOR REVILLA. The determination of whether the PDAF
.'Ocuments must be nullified on the ground that SENATOR
' VILLA's signatures thereon were forged will necessarily affect the
riminal proceedings to the extent that it will determine the guilt or
'Ilnocence of SENATOR REVILLA. Specifically, the nullification of
the PDAF Documents will 1completely sever SENATOR REVILLA's
,alleged link to the criminal charges against him and will thereby
.warrant the perfunctory dismissal of the Criminal Complaints in so
far as he is concerned .
. '.' . . 8.15. As alleged in the Criminal Complaints, these PDAF
(Documents show that SENATOR REVILLA supposedly endorsed
:certain NGOs in relation to the disbursement of his office's PDAF
1
/. allocation. It is also in these PDAF Documents that SENATOR
:: REVILLA purportedly authorized Atty. Cambe to act as his
representative in dealing with the alleged improper disbursement of
the PDAF allocation. Without these falsified PDAF Documents, all
that the NBI, FIO and Atty. Baligod have are hearsay testimonies of
the alleged "whistleblowers," which do not and cannot support a
. finding of probable cause, much less a conviction of any of the crimes
charged beyond reasonable doubt.
8.16. The Criminal Complaints only survive, in so far as
SENATOR REVILLA is concerned, if the questioned PDAF
Documents supporting them are held valid, genuine and subsisting or
declared to have been made with the participation of SENATOR
REVILLA. For only then can the link between SENATOR REVILLA
and the alleged illegal scheme would appear to exist.
8.17. It is, thus, respectfully submitted that the RTC Bacoor's
resolution of the issues presented in the Civil Case is determinative of
SENATOR REVILLA's guilt or innocence as a judicial affirmation
of the falsity of his signature thereon and the nullity of
documents now supporting the Criminal Complaints would
24
2G
. I
' {
i
' l
ii
1, i
.
"!
ation that SENATOR REVILLA took no art
ii himself or throu h a re resentative in the
t6n of the crime of Plunder or an other crime
"'.the Criminal Com laints.
-Simply stated, the declaration that the PDAF Documents
the criminal complaints against SENATOR REVILLA are
fforgeries would render the proceedings a quo against him
unmeritorious, and false, and bereft in evidentiary
''hich would warrant its outright dismissal.
Fourth, the jurisdiction to try the prejudicial question,
ther the documents now supporting the Criminal Complaints
'''uine or not, is lodged with the Regional Trial Court as the
. 'th jurisdiction to declare contracts or documents null and
found that they are absolutely simulated or fictitious.
's.20. The issue arising from the Civil Case is currently, and
.erly, lodged with another tribunal - RTC Bacoor, Cavite - which
to declare null and void fictitious contracts
ocuments. More importantly, the determination of whether the
rported signatures of SENATOR REVILLA (and Atty. Cambe) are
,,'geries, thereby making the PDAF Documents null and void, falls
11
'fhin the exclusive original jurisdiction.of the Regional Trial Court,
dt is a case that is incapable of pecuniary estimation.
8.21. Jurisprudence has settled that the rationale behind the
,linciple of prejudicial question is to avoid two conflicting decisionS.37
he Motions to Suspend precisely seek to achieve this purpose. It
ould be futile for respondent OMBUDSMAN to continue with the
proceedings a quo only to be presented with facts, affirmed by a court
,;.
1
ofcompetent jurisdiction, which will necessarily put all its efforts in
\the present preliminary investigation in vain.
8.22. As will be further expounded below, undeniably, all the
requisites of a prejudicial question are present. Consequently,
' .respondent OMBUDSMAN gravely abused its discretion amounting
to lack or excess of jurisdiction in disregarding these facts and
refusing to immediately suspend the proceedings a quo against
SENATOR REVILLA pending a full and final determination of the
Civil Case.
b. The finding of respondent
OMBUDSMAN that there is no
prejudicial question since forgery or
falsijication is not a element
37 Beltran v. People of the Philippines, G.R. No. 137567, 20 June 2000, 334SCRA106, 110.
25
'} P.',I
(;. '
r, Malversation3
8
and Section
/'+R.A. No. 3019, is patently
iJs: and not in any way
!jative of the erl:stence or
l1f a prejudicialjquestion.
:23. In its ASSAILED ORDERS, respondent OMBUDSMAN
. that since forgery and falsification are not necessary
ts of Plunder and Section 3 (e) of R.A. No. 3019, then these
it cases are not intimately related to the Civil Case.39
11dent OMBUDSMAN is gravely inistaken.
1
It does not follow that since forgery and falsification are
of the crime charged, prejudicial question could no
'er arise. One to one correspondence of the elements of
e'.crime charged and the cause of action in the civil case is
.,.trequired. It is sufficient that the issues in both cases are
tricately related, which is the case here .
. 8.25. Respondent OMBUDSMAN stubbornly refused,
mounting to grave abuse of discretion, to consider that the
nullification of the PDAF Documents in the Civil Case will render the
Criminal Complaints absolutely bereft of any evidence that would
::seemingly link SENATOR REVILLA (and Atty. Cambe) to the alleged
1
:PDAF scheme. The determination of nullity of the PDAF Docu1nents
will not only remove the elements of Plunder and Corrupt Practices
.:funder Section 3 (e) of R.A. No. 3019 in the present criminal
complaints, but will, in fact, make them dismissible on their face.
.. 8.26. Absent the PDAF Documents, the element of "acts by
himself or in connivance" in the crime of Plunder will be absent in
relation to SENATOR REVILLA because his supposed operative act of
endorsement and appoint1nent of representative will cease to exist.
8.27. Likewise, without the PDAF Documents, the
appropriation or taking through consent or through abandonment or
negligence will likewise not be present since there will be no evidence
to show that SENATOR REVILLA participated through an act or
omission, in such misappropriation.
8.28. With regard to Section 3(e) of R.A. No. 3019, without the
PDAF Documents, there would be no evidence of act of "manifest
partiality, evident bad faith or inexcusable negligence" since
SENATOR REVILLA would not have acted at all.
3
8
The Complaint charges only the crime of Plunder while the FIO Complaint charges
the cnme of Plunder and Violation of Section 3 (e) of R.A. 3019. Malversation is not
among the charges in any of the complaints.
39 Joint Order dated 28 January 2014, p. 7.
26
The falsifi.ed PDAF
. ents are the only evidence
.fl SENATOR REVILLA to t-he
.ed PDAF scam and the only basis
he alleged whistleblowers in
him to the said scam .
. >8.29. Respondent OMBUDSMAN stated in its ASSALIED
.ERS that even assuming that the RTC Bacoor declares the PDAF
uments to be null and void and the signatures therein as forged, it
''Id only affect the probative value of these documents and not the
"'inal charges, since there are still other pieces of evidence
.. by the prosecution to its case. 4 With due respect,
&ti. .
'"sis a patently erroneous appreciation of the legal situation.
: .. : I
I
.. 8.30. As discussed, the PDAF Documents are the only pieces of
<dence that allegedly prove that SENATOR REVILLA committed
cts or omissions to implicate hhn in the PDAF scam. With the
ullification of these PDAF Documents, an issue which the RTC
.. acoor can competently decide on, the connection would be broken
and what will remain are mere hearsay sworn statements of the
",whistleblowers," who are self-confessed forgers or authors of the
orgezy of the signatures of SENATOR REVILLA and Atty. Cambe
and, consequently, whose credibility are tainted. There will be
':llothing in the records that 1nay remotely support a finding of
::probable cause against SENATOR REVILLA. The supposed business
... records of companies allegedly controlled by Napoles and the on-field
)verification conducted by the Fl04
1
do not constitute evidence of any
act or omission on the part of SENATOR REVILLA and thus, do not
.. in any way prove SENATOR REVILLA's possible criminal liability.
Again, without the PDAF Documents, the complainants
have absolutely nothing
1
against SENATOR REVILLA.
8.31. Indeed, the cases against SENATOR REVILLA in the
. proceedings a quo will not stand without the presence of the falsified
PDAF Documents. Suffice it to say, the falsified PDAF Documents are
so integral to the criminal actfons that their nullification in the Civil
Case would necessarily demand the dismissal of the proceedings a
quo even in the preliminary investigation stage. Such is the vezy
essence of a prejudicial question.
8.32. In the ASSAILED ORDERS, respondent OMBUDSMAN
stated that the evidence submitted by the NBI and the FIO in support
of their respective criminal complaint was not limited to the PDAF
Documents. It must be noted, however, that the alleged evidence
against SENATOR REVILLA may be grouped into two categories:
4 Joint Order dated 28 January 2014, p. 8.
4
1
Joint Order dated 28 January 2014, p. 8.
27
29
-'ipnAF Documents; and
i;'...: '
:)::.<::< . .'
'e acts or declarations of Benhur Luy,
&rina Sula, and Merlina Sufi.as.
11
'ection 30, Rule. 130 of the Rules of Court provides:
U'" I
SEC. 30. Admission by conspirator. - The act or declaration of a
relating to the conspiracy and during its existence, may
given in evidence against the coconspirator after the conspiracy
.. is shown by evidence other than such act or declaration.
/' '
4; Benhur Luy, Marina Sula, and Merlina Sufi.as admitted
participation in the so-called PDAF scam.
t' ,,
.5. In the Pinagsamang Sinumpaang Salaysay dated 11
her 20134
2
of Benhur Luy and Merlina Sufi.as, together with
ffiants, admitted the following acts, which show their direct
' ation in the commission of their own crimes:
They were the ones who created and established the
NGOs/foundations they used in the so-called PDAF scam.
(Par. 3)
They signed the incorporation papers prepared by Marina
Sula for the NGOs/foundations. (Par. 3)
.. Marina Sula was the one who prepared almost all docu1nents
for the creation of the NGOs/foundations which they
(Benhur Luy and Merlina Sufi.as) had signed, and it was
Marina Sula who forged the signatures of the president and
incorporators of. the NGOs/foundations:
"3 xxx Si Marina Sula ang naghanda ng halos lahat na
dokumento at pinapirma na lamang niya kami; yong ibang mga
pangalan ng Presidente at Incorporators ay ipinirma na lamang ni
Marina Sula."
They were the ones who opened the bank accounts of the
NGOs/foundations. (Par; 3.1.1)
They deposited from the linplementing Agencies to
their bogus NGOs. (Par. 4.7)
4
2
A copy of Annex UUUUUUUUUUUUUUU, FIO Complaint is attached as Annex "N" and
made an integral part hereof.
28
p.In his J(aragdagang Sinumpaang Salaysay dated 12
:er 2013, 43 Benhur Luy admitted fabricating documents and
,the. signatures of the legislators to create a semblance of
tY for the release of PDAF to their bogus NGOs, thus:.
, ... ,
'\ .
,.,
6. T: May iba pa ba kayong gagawin maliban sa report of disbursement
patungkol sa liquidation?
' .
S: Mayroon pa po. Pini-prepare din yung list of beneficiaries,
certificate of inspection and acceptance coming from the office ng
proponent or legislators, certificate of project completion, delivery
receipts, sales invoice, official receipts from the supplier,
independent auditor's report, accomplishment report, at pictures
ng implementation kung mayroong implementation. Kung wala
pong implementation, wala po kaming i-attach na pictures. At sa
mga nasabing mga dokumento na kailangan ang pirma ng
legislators, may mga panahon po na kami na ang pumipirma sa
mga pangalan ng I mga Chief of Staff ng niga legislators o sa
pangalan ng iilang Congressman sa utos ni Madame JANET LIM
NAPOLES .
.. .. 117. T: Nabanggit mo na may mga panahon na kayo ang pumipirma sa
pangalan ng mga Chief of Staff ng mga legislators o sa pangalan ng
iilang Congressman, ano ang ibig sabihin ditto at sinu-sino ang mga
kasama mong pumipirma?
S: Kapag kami ay nagli-liquidate at may mga dokumento na kailangan
ang pirma ng Chief of Staff ng mga legislators o ng Congressman ay
kami na po ang pumipirma para sa kanila sa utos po ni Madame
JANET LIM NAPOLES. Ang mga kasama ko po na pumipirma sa
mga nasabing dokumento ay sila EVELYN DE LEON, at MERLINA
SuNAS."
. 8.37. In the same Karagdagang Sinumpaang Salaysay dated
,:.12 September 2013, Benhur also admitted falsifying the
:: notarization of disbursement reports and forging the signatures of
x: notaries public: I

"107. T: Nabanggit mo na ang ginagawa ninyong report of disbursement
ay notarized, saan ninyo ito dinadala para i-panotarize?
S: Doon din lang sa opisina ng JLN Corporation po.
108. T: Kilala mo ba kung sino ang nagno-notarize ng report of
disbursement na ginagawa ninyo?
S: Bale ipinipirma na naming iyon mga attorney. May dry seal at
stamp siya sa am.in at notarial logbook.
109. T: Maaari mo bang linawin kung papaano nangyaring kayo na rin
ang nagnonotaryo sa opisina ninyosa JLN Corporation?
.
43 A copy of Annex ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ, FIO Complaint is attached as Annex "O" and
made an integral part hereof.
29
I ,... ...
31
S: Ang totoo po niyan ay ayon kay Madame JANET LIM NAPOLES
ay kausap na niya ang mga abogadong nagnonotaryo. Mayroong dry
seal, stamp, at notarial book ang mga attorney sa opisina para kami
na ang pumirma at maglagay ng n ~ r y sa notarial logbook.
T: Maaari mo bang sabihin kung sinu-sino itong mga tinutukoy
mong notary public na inyong ipinipirma at nagpapagamit ng dry
seal sa JLN Corporation? .
S: Opo, sina Atty.
1
MARK OLIVEROS, Atty. EDITHA TALABOC,
Atty. RAYMUND TANSIP at Atty. JOSHUA LAPUZ."
8.38. In her Karagdagang Sinumpaang Salaysay dated 12
tember 2013 , 44 Marina Sula admitted the following acts, which
'w her direct participation in the commission of her own crimes:
'.
It was she who established the following
NGOs/foundations. (Answer to Question No. 29)
The foundations she established from 2008 to 2010
were not registered with the Bureau of Internal
Revenue, and they issued fake receipts. (Answers to
Questions No. 35 and 36)
. .. 8.39. In her Sinumpaang Salaysay dated 5 November 2013,4s
,Merlina Sufi.as admitted that she and her group invented the names
/appearing in the PDAF I)ocuments and forged the signatures
.?'appearing on the documents:
"15. Tanong: Paano at sino ang mga nagproseso at lumagda sa mga
Certificates of Acceptance, Delivery Receipts, Acknowledgment
Receipts at Lists of Beneficiaries?
Sagot: Sa liquidation na po ginagawa ang mga papeles na ito. Sa
utos ni Ma'am Jenny, kami-kami na ring mga employees sa JLN
Corp. ang pumipirma sa mga pangalan ng mga taong involved pati
na ng mga beneficiaries sa liquidation papers. Kami-kami na rin
ang nag-imbento o nag-fabricate ng mga pangalan tapos
pinipirmahan na rin po naming opposite sa mga pangalan nila.
16. Tanong: Sino at paano ang PFOseso ng pagliliquidate ng mga
proyekto na ipinatupad ng NGO gamit ang PDAF ni Sen. Revilla?
Sagot: Kami-kami na rin po ang gumagawa ng liquidation reports tapos
pinapapirma na lang namin sa mga president ng mga NGO's."
44 A copy Annex VVWVVWVVVVVVV, FIO Complaint is attached as Annex "P" and
made an integral part hereof.
4
s A copy Annex WWWWWWWWWWWWWWW, FIO Complaint is attached as Annex
"Q" and made an integral part hereof.
30
il
I
/)

8-40. Clearly, Benhur Luy, Marina Sula, and Merlina Sufias are
self-confessed criminals who conspired with one another in the
commission of the so-called PDAF scam.
8.41. Section 30, Rule 130 requires that before the acts or
declarations of Benhur Luy, Marina Sula, and Merlina Sufias may be
given in evidence against SENATOR REVILLA (and against Atty.
Cambe) - who they accused as their co-conspirators - it is essential
that the conspiracy is shown by evidence other than such acts or
declarations.
8-42. However, the PDAF Documents were falsified as admitted
by Merlina Sufias herself (see Annex
of the FIO Complaint). These PDAF
Documents are subject of the Civil Case where there is a pending
prejudicial question to the charges of Plunder and Corrupt Practices.
8-43 With the existence of a prejudicial question, respondent
OMBUDSMAN cannot take into account the acts and declarations of
Benhur Luy, Marina Sula, and Merlina Sufias in resolving whether
probable cause exists to charge SENATOR REVILLA with Plunder
and Corrupt Practices without violating the rules on prejudicial
question, and without preempting the RTC Bacoor on the Civil Case.
8-44 Without independent and credible evidence on SENATOR
REVILLA's supposed participation as co-conspirator, which the
PDAF Documents seem to provide, only the unsubstantiated acts or
declarations of Benhur Luy, Marina Sula, and Merlina Sufi.as drag
him into the alleged conspiracy.
8-45 Verily, respondent OMBUDSMAN arbitrarily failed to
conduct an objective evaluation. of the evidence presented by the
herein Respondents. Otherwise, it should have been indubitable that
without the falsified PDAF Documents, there is absolutely no case
against SENATOR REVILLA. Hence, there exists a prejudicial
question warranting the suspension of the preliminary investigation
against SENATOR REVILLA.
d. The non-inclusion of the
alleged 20 July 20:1.:1. Commission on
Audit ("COA ") Confirmation letter in
the Civil Case does not make the
actions of SENATOR REVILLA "highly
suspect," much less change the fact
that there exists a prejudicial question
to warrant the suspension of. the
.inary investigation as against
.OR REVILLA.
'.46. Respondent OMBUDSMAN stated in its FIRST
LED ORDER that the commencement of the Civil Case is
. uspect as SENATOR REVILLA and Atty. Cam be already knew
y as July 2011 of the existence of the PDAF Documents.4
6
This
:rroneous statement and constitutes prejudgment on the part of
rident OMBUDSMAN,1aside from the fact that it is a c01npletely
vant and invalid justification for denying the Motions to
~ r i d . This is reflective of the respondent OMBUDSMAN's grave
'e of discretion.
i: 8-47 At the time the Civil Case was filed on 13 September
3, SENATOR REVILLA was not yet in possession of a copy of the
ified20 July 2011 confirmation letter to COA. As soon as the news
. "'e out that SENATOR REVILLA supposedly has a "confirmation
~ e r to COA, SENATOR REVILLA immediately tried to secure a
C.QPY thereof. Unfortunately, it was only after the Civil Case was. filed
j;it SENATOR REVILLA was able to secure a copy and submit the
'ine to handwriting experts for analysis. Hence, the falsified 20 July
on COA Confirmation Letter was not. included in the Civil Case .
. e\Tertheless, its non-inclusion in the Civil Case is not an indication,
'uchless an evidence, of "afterthought."
8.48. Indeed, as shown in the Counter-Affidavits of SENATOR
;vJLLA, the alleged 20 July 2011 COA Confinnation Letter was
alsified.
8.49. In any case, the absence of the alleged COA confirmation
Jetter in the Civil Case does not affect the presence of a prejudicial
question, which warrants the suspension of the proceedings a quo
. against SENATOR REVILLA. Respondent OMBUDSMAN gravely
.:abused its discretion when it unduly gave weight and significance to
. the alleged COA confirmation letter since, as explained in the
.. . Counter-Affidavits and supported by the findings of handwriting
experts, the purported signature of SENATOR REVILLA therein was
forged. The falsified PDAF Documents cannot become authentic just
because there exists a COA confirmation letter (which, as stated, was
also falsified).
8.50. There is no basis for respondent OMBUDSMAN to find
that the Civil Case is meant to delay the crhninal proceedings. It bears
reiterating that the Civil Case was filed before the.criminal co1nplaints
were instituted. That, in itself, is an indication that the Civil Case was
4
6
Joint Order dated 28 January 2014, pp. 8-9.
32
34
l
II
11
':si Moreover, respondent OMBUDSMAN erred in justifying
',:al of the Motions to Suspend and Motion for Reconsideration
llegation that the filing of the Civil Case was suspicious based
(Supposed actual or constructive knowledge of SENATOR
LA of the impending filing of the Criminal Complaints as the
./reports prior to commencement of the Civil Case already
ted that charges will be pressed against the legislators
in the alleged PDAF scam. This reasoning blatantly
. ,,'gards the rule on prejudicial question, which requires in basic
the civil action must have been instituted prior to the
action. Respondent OMBUDSMAN thus cannot arrogate
!!Ii''.# itself the power to amend the law, rules and jurisprudential
Ilouncements of this Honorable Court by .stating that actual or
s:tructive knowledge of an impending filing of a criminal charge
the existence 9f the institution of a civil case. Indeed, at
that the Criminal Cases in the proceedings a quo were
:, .. stituted, the Civil Case was already pending before the RTC Bacoor.
espondent OMBUDSMAN's feigning ignorance of the settled law,
'' les and jurisprudence, and stubborn insistence that there exists no
reviously instituted Civil Case intimately related to the Criminal
.. ases subject of the prelhninary investigation amounts to grave abuse
of discretion constituting lack or excess of its jurisdiction.
... e. SENATOR REVILLA's
Motions to Suspend the preliminary
investigation were not prematurely
:'filed. Contrary to respondent
::/OMBUDSMAN's finding, SENA.TOR
>REVILLA need not wait for a "formal
;charge" against him to befiled in court
)> so he can seek the nullification of the
.f .PDAF Documents in Civil Case, and
... move for the suspension of the criminal
proceedings on the ground of
.. prejudicial question.
8.52. Respondent OMBUDSMAN opined that it is premature
for SENATOR REVILLA to question the authenticity of the PDAF
Documents at the stage of the preliminary investigation as it is a mere
evidentiary matter best raised during trial proper. 47
8.53. Such observation blindly disregards the fact that
.. SENATOR REVILLA is merely moving for the suspension of the
47 Joint Order dated 28 January 2014, p. 10.
33
35
I
'I
reliminary investigation. Respondent OMBUDSMAN sounded as if
fis already finding probable cause against SENATOR REVILLA. This
$.reflective of respondent OMBUDSMAN's grave and patent abuse of
. 'scretion. What SENATOR REVILLA asked for, when he filed the
I
M:otions to Suspend, from respondent OMBUDSMAN was to
gbjectively determine if ALL the elements of prejudicial question are
present.
8.54. Indeed, respondent OMBUDSMAN gravely abused its
and clearly failed to act fairly on such motions. The
: suspension of criminal action by reason of a prejudicial question is
allowed as early as the preliminary investigation stage of the
proceedings. In Dreamwork Construction, Inc. v. Janiola, et al.,4
8
'the Supreme Court held:
"In the instant case, Art. 36 of the Civil Code and Sec. 7 of Rule 111
of the Rules of Court are susceptible of ari interpretation that would
harmonize both provisions of law. The phrase "previously instituted
civil action" in Sec. 7 of Rule 111 is plainly worded and is not
susceptible of alternative interpretations. The clause "before
any criminal prosecution may be instituted or may
proceed" in Art. 36 of the Civil Code may, however. be
interpreted to mean that the motion to suspend the
criminal action may be filed during the preliminary
investigation with the public prosecutor or court
conducting the investigation, or during the trial with the court
hearing the case.
This interpretation would harmonize Art. 36 of the Civil Code with
Sec. 7 of Rule 111 of the Rules of Court but also with Sec. 6 of Rule
111 of the Civil Code, which provides for the situations when the
motion to suspend the criminal action during the preliminary
investigation or during the trial may be filed. Sec. 6 provides:
SEC. 6. Suspension by reason of prejudicial question.-A
petition for suspension of the criminal action based
upon the pendency of a preiudicial question in a
civil action may be filed in the office of the
prosecutor or the court conducting the preliminary
investigation. When the . criminal action has been filed in
court for trial, the petition to suspend shall be filed in the
same criminal action at any time before the prosecution
rests."49
8.55. All told, respondent OMBUDSMAN acted with grave
abuse of discretion when it evaded its positive duty and capriciously
and whimsically refused to suspend the preliminary investigation
against SENATOR REVILLA despite the presence of prejudicial
question.
4s G.R. No. 184861, 30 June 2009.
49 Emphasis and underscoring supplied.
34
3G
B. RESPONDENT OMBUDSMAN GRAVELY
ERRED AND ACTED WITHOUT OR IN EXCESS
OF JURISDICTION AND WITH GRAVE ABUSE
OF DISCRETION. IN DISMISSING OUTRIGHT
SENATOR REVILLA'S COUNTER-CHARGE
AGAINST DENNIS L. CUNANAN, ANTONIO Y.
ORTIZ, ALAN A. JAVELLANA, GONDELINA G.
AMATA, SALVADOR SALAC:UP, MYLENE T.
ENCARNACION, NEMESIO PABLO, EVELYN DE
LEON, JOCELYN PIORATO, JOHN RAYMUND DE
ASIS AND RONALDO JOHN LIM, BENHUR K.
LUY, MERLINA P. SuNAS AND MARINA SULA.
I '
f
8.56. Respondent OMBUDSMAN likewise committed grave
error and acted without or in excess of its jurisdiction and with grave
'. abuse of its discretion when it dismissed outright SENATOR
', .REVILIA's criminal co1nplaint against respondents Dennis L.
Cunanan, Antonio Y. Ortiz, Alan A. Javellana, Gondelina G. Amata,
Salvador Salacup, Mylene T. Encarnacion, Nemesio Pablo, Evelyn De
'Leon, Jocelyn Piorato, John Raymund de Asis and Ronaldo John Liln
merely on the basis that .the factual allegations of the counter-charge
are identical to those already contained in the NBI and FIO Criminal
. Complaints against them.so
8.57. According to respondent OMBUDSMAN, the Counter-
Charge of SENATOR REVILIA will result in duplication of functions
and unduly burden its office.s
1
It is a source of wonder, therefore, why
the FIO Criminal Complaint SENATOR REVILLA was not
dismissed despite the fact that when such was filed, an NBI coin plaint
. I .
. against SENATOR REVILLA. was already pending. The FIO Criminal
. Complaint, like SENATOR REVILIA's Counter-Charge, has factual
allegations that are identical to those in the NBI Criminal
Complaint.s
2
8.58. Thus, respondent OMBUDSMAN effectively ignored the
equal protection rights of SENATOR REVILIA and the fundamental
rules on fairness when it failed to consolidate SENATOR REVILIA's
counter-charge to the proceedings a quo or, in the alternative, dismiss
the FIO Criminal Complaint against him.
8.59. As regards Complainants-Respondents' witnesses Benhur
K. Luy, Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina Sula, respondent
OMBUDSMAN arbitrarily used their inclusion in the DOJ's WPP as
its sole basis in denying SENATOR REVILIA's Counter-Charge for
plunder against them. This constitutes patent reversible error,
50
51
52
See Joint Order dated 28 2014, p. 10.
Joint Order dated 28 January 2014, p. 10.
Ibid.
35
" !
3 '( \ ;\
\
1:i.to grave abuse of discretion; on the part of respondent
for three (3) reasons.
r8.59.1. First, under R.A. No. 6981, or the "Witness
ection, Security iand Benefit. Act", the certification of
... ission into the WPP by the DOJ is binding only upon the
.,,\i . Vincial or city prosecutor. Expressio unius est exclusio
'lterius, the express inclusion of one implies the exclusion of all
ers.s3 The law expressly provides:
"SEC. 12. Effect of Admission of a State Witness into
the Program. - The certification into the Program by the
Department shall be given full faith and credit by the
provincial or city prosecutor who is required not to
include Witness in the criminal complaint or information
and if included therein, to petition the court for his discharge
and exclusion of the accused from the information. xxx"S4
8.59.2. Under the law, the provincial or city prosecutor is
Fr>duty-bound to exclude a State witness from the criminal
i complaint or information ~ y the inere certification of the DOJ
...stems from the statutory grant of control and supervision upon
..the latter over the for!ner. R.A. o ~ 10071, or the "Prosecution
Service Act of 2010", provides:
"SEC. 3. Creation of the National Prosecution Service. -
There is hereby created and established a National
Prosecution Service to be composed of the prosecution staff
in the Office of the Secretary of Justice and such number of
regional prosecution offices, offices of the provincial
prosecutor and offices of the city prosecutor as are
hereinafter provided, which shall be primarily responsible
for the preliminary investigation and prosecution of all cases
involving violations of penal laws under the supervision of
the Secretary of Justice, subject to the provisions of Sections
4, 5 and 7 hereof.
xxx .
SEC. 5. The Prosecution Staff and its Functions. - There
shall be in the Office of the Secretary of Justice a prosecution
staff that shall be composed of prosecuting officers in such
number as hereinqelow determined. It shall be headed by a
Prosecutor General who shall be as.sisted by the following:
xxx
The Prosecution Staff, which shall be under the
control and supervision of the Secretary of Justice,
shall have the following functions: xx x"
53 See Commissioner of Internal Revenue v. Michel J. Lhuillier Pawnshop, Inc., G.R. No.
150947, July 15, 2003.
54 Emphasis and underscoring supplied.
36
38
,;.B.59.3. R.A. No. 10071 is not a revolutionary piece of
$lation insofar as the control and supervision of the DOJ
'.'f,' .the National Prosecution Service is concerned. Its
, 'i<l.ecessor statute, P.D. No. 1275, which was enacted into law
i as 1978, contained a similar provision, to wit:
"SECTION 1. Creation of the National Prosecution Service;
Supervision and Control of the Secretary of Justice. - There
is hereby created and established a National Prosecution
Service under the supervision and control of the Secretary of
Justice, to be composed of the Prosecution Staff in the Office
of the Secretary of Justice and such number of Regional
State Prosecution Offices, and Provincial and City Fiscal's
Offices as are hereinafter. provided, which shall be primarily
responsible for the investigation and prosecution of all cases
involving of penal laws. .
The power of supervision and control vested in the Secretary
of Justice includes the authority to act directly on any matter
within the jurisdiction of the Prosecution Staff, the Regional
State Prosecution Office or the Office of the Provincial or
City Fiscal and to review, modify or revoke any decision or
action of the Chief of said staff or office."
8.59.4. Hence, construing R.A. No. 6981 vis-a-vis R.A.
No. 10071, the seeming mandatory character of the certification
of the DOJ must be held applicable only upon members of the
National Prosecution Service, such as the provincial or city
prosecutor.
8.59.5. Second, by constitutional and statutory design,
respondent OMBUDSMAN. should remain independent from
any other branch of government or any agency, including
the DOJ. Article XI /of the Philippine Constitution reads in
pertinent part, to wit:
"SEC. 5. There is hereby created the independent Office
of the Ombudsman, composed of the Ombudsman to be
known as Tanodbayan, one overall Deputy and at least one
Deputy each for Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. A separate
Deputy for the military establishment may likewise be
appointed."
8.59.6. R.A. No. 6770, or "The Ombudsman Act of 1989",
further reinforces the complete autonomy of respondent
OMBUDSMAN by granting it supervision and control over its
own affairs in the exercise of its constitutional mandate, thus:
"SEC. 11. Structural Organization. - The authority and
responsibility for the exercise of the mandate of the Office of
the Ombudsman and for the discharge of its powers and
i
37
39
functions shall be vested in the Ombudsman, who shall have
supervision and control of the i d office. xx x
SEC. 13. Mandate. - The Ombudsman and his Deputies, as
protectors of the people, shall act promptly on complaints
filed in any form or manner against officers or employees of
the Government,. or of any subdivision, agency or
instrumentality thereof, including government-owned or
controlled corporations, and enforce their administrative,
civil and criminal liability in every case where the evidence
warrants in order to promote efficient service by the
Government to the people."
8.59. 7. In Perez v. Sandiganbayan,55 the Honorable
Court held that control means "the power of an officer to alter
or modify or nullify or set aside what a subordinate officer had
done in the perfonnance of his duties and to substitute the
judgment of the former for that of the latter." Applied to the
proceedings a quo, respondent OMBUDSMAN could not have
been easily bound by the mere certification of the DOJ without
compromising its own control a:S to how it deems fit to
discharge its powers and functions. Interestingly, among the
powers vested in respondent OMBUDSMAN under R.A. No.
6770 is the power to grant im1nunity to a prospective State
witness, thus:
"SEC. 17. Immunities. - In all hearings, inqmnes, and
proceedings of the Ombudsman, including preliminary
investigations of offenses, nor person subpoenaed to testify
as a witness shall be excused from attending and testifying or
from producing books, papers, correspondence, memoranda
and/ or other records on the ground that the testimony or
evidence, documentary or otherwise, required of him, may
tend to incriminate him or subject him to prosecution:
Provided, Tharno person shall be prosecuted criminally for
or on account of any matter concerning which he is
compelled, after having claimed the privilege against self-
incrimination, to testify and produce evidence, documentary
or otherwise.
Under such terms and conditions as it may determine, taking
into account the pertinent provisions of the Rules of Court,
the Ombudsman may grant immunity from criminal
prosecution to any person whose testimony or
whose possession and production of documents or
other evidence 1nay be necessary to determine the
truth in any hearing, inquiry or proceeding being
conducted by the Ombudsman or under its
authority, in the performance or in the furtherance
of its constitutional functions and statutory
objectives. The immunity granted under this and the
immediately preceding paragraph shall not exempt the
55 G.R. No. 166062, September 26, 2006.
38
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'-' t J
J. \,,._
11\11
witness from criminal prosecution for perjury or false
.testimony nor shall he be exempt from demotion or removal
from office.
Any refusal to appear or testify pursuant to the foregoing
provisions shall be subject to punishment for contempt and
removal of the immunity from criminal prosecution."
8.59.8. Clearly, under constitutional and statutory law,
.. respondent OMBUDSMAN is not bound in any way by the
,( certification issued by the DOJ. On the contrazy, having been
.:vested with supervision and control over her own affairs, it is
mandated to investigate and detennine on its own the existence
of probable cause against complainants' witnesses Benhur K.
, Luy, Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina Sula independent of any
.. prior certification or arion made the DOJ ..
8.59.9. Third, respondent OMBUDSMAN is not only
autonomous from, but is even superior over the DOJ with
. respect to the proceedings a quo. To recall, the Counter-Charge
of SENATOR REVILLA against Complainants' witnesses
Benhur K. Luy, Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina Sula is for
Plunder, a case cognizable by the Sandiganbayan.s
6
Hence,
respondent OMBUDSMAN has primary jurisdiction over the
same, as provided in R.A. No. 6770:
"SEC. 15. Powers, Functions and Duties. - The Office of the
Ombudsman shall have the following powers, functions and
duties:
(1) Investigate and prosecute on its own or on complaint
by any person, any act or omission of any public officer or
employee, office or agency, when such act or omission
appears to be illegal, unjust, or inefficient. It has
primary over cases cognizable by the
Sandiganbayan and, in the exercise of this primary
jurisdiction, it may take over, at any stage, from any
investigatory agency of Government, the investigation of
such cases;"
8.59.10. In Deparhnent of Justice v. Liwag,s7 the
Honorable Court emphatically described the supreme position
held by respondent OMBUDSMAN relative to the DOJ, to wit:
"Section 13, Article XI of the Constitution specifically vests in
the Office of the Ombudsman the plenary power to
investigate any malfeasance, misfeasance or non-feasance of
public officers or employees. To its duty effectively,
the Constitution endowed the Office of the
5
6
Sec. 3, R.A. No. 7080.
57 G.R. No. 149311, February 11, 2005.
39
41
Ombudsman with special features which puts it a
notch above other grievance-handling, investigate
bodies.xxx
The Office of the Ombudsman was likewise envisioned by the
Constitution to serve as the principal and primary
complaints and action center for the aggrieved
layman baffled by the bureaucratic maze of procedures.
For this purpose, it was granted more than the usual
powers given t6 It was vested with the
power to investigate complaints against a public office or
officer on its own initiative, even without a formal complaint
lodged before it. It can inquire into acts of government
agencies and public servants based on reports in the media
and those which come to his attention through sources other
than a complaint. The method of filing a complaint with the
Ombudsman is direct, informal, speedy and inexpensive. All
that may be required from a complainant is sufficient
information detailing the illegal or improper acts complained
of. The ordinary citizen, who has become increasingly
dependent on public agencies, is put to minimal expense and
difficulty in getting his complaint acted on by the Office of
the Ombudsman. Vis-a-vis other prosecutors, the exercise by
the Ombudsman of its power to investigate public officials is
given preference over other bodies.
AB aforementioned, Congress itself acknowledged the
significant role played by the Office of Ombudsman when it
enacted Republic f\.ct No. 6770. 15 (1) of said law
gives the Ombudsman primary jurisdiction over cases
cognizable by the Sandiganbayan and authorizes him to take
over, at any stage, from any investigatory agency, the
investigation of such cases. This power to take over a case at
any time is not given to other investigative bodies. All this
means that the power of the Ombudsman to
investigate cases cognizable by the Sandiganbayan is
not co-equal with other investigative bodies, such as
the DOJ. The Ombudsman can delegate the power but the
delegate cannot: claim equal power.
Clearly, therefore, while the DOJ has general jurisdiction to
conduct preliminary investigation of cases involving
violations of the Revised Penal Code, this general jurisdiction
cannot diminish the plenary power and primary jurisdiction
of the Ombudsman to investigate complaints specifically
directed against public officers and employees. The Office
of the Ombudsman is a constitutional creation. In
contrast, the DOJ is an extension of the executive
department, .bereft of . the constitutional
independence granted to the Ombudsman."sB
8.59.11. In view of the foregoing, the certification issued
by the DOJ on the admission of complainants' witnesses
Benhur K. Luy, Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina Sula into the WPP
Citations omitted; emphasis and underscoring supplied.
40
4
')
(.,,
I.
I
I
"1
I
,,
II
I
certainly does not tie
1
the hands o{ respondent OMBUDSMAN
from investigating the existence of probable cause for plunder
filed against them by SENATOR REVILLA. Respondent
OMBUDSMAN's conduct in dismissing outright the Counter-
Charges filed by SENATOR REVILLA amounts to grave abuse
of discretion .
. , 8.60. Ultimately, ~ h t SENATOR REVILLA simply prays is for
spondent OMBUDSMAN to perform, rather than skirt, its
.011stitutional duty to prosecute complainants' witnesses Benhur K.
uy, Merlina P Sufi.as and Marina Sula .
. 8.61. Furthermore, ASSUMING WITHOlIT GRANTING that
.there is a need for the admission of a "whistleblower" into Witness
,:.Protection Security and Benefit Program ("Program") in relation to
hhe proceedings a quo, there is a clear showing that admitting all
}:three of Benhur K. Luy, Merlina P Sufi.as. and Marina Sula constitute
:, grave abuse of discretion. It should be noted that, according to
Section 10 of R.A. 6981, the following circumstances, a1nong others,
must be present: (1) there is absolute necessity for his testimony; and
(2) he does not appear to be the most guilty.
8.62. A close reading of the affidavits of Benhur K. Luy,
Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina Sula would show that all three concoct
.. the same fabricated story. Indeed, their version of the events that
.. transpired in relation to the alleged PDAF scam does not become true
because three of them say so. Once one "whistleblower" has
. already been granted admission into the Program and has
. already executed an affidavit dete:tlling the alleged crime
committed, there should no longer be an "absolute
. necessity" for the testimony of the other "whistle blowers."
Well-settled is the rule that the testiinony of a lone prosecution
witness, as long as it is credible and positive, can prove the guilt of the
accused beyond reasonable Cloubt.59
8.63. Here, the testimony of one should be sufficient to support
the intrinsically weak Criminal Complaints. The testiinonies of the
other two do not add value or credibility to the charges against
SENATOR REVILLA. There is no absolute necessity for their
testimonies and consequently, their admission to the program.
8.64. In fact, the DOJ, as shown by the Certificate of Admission
dated 23 January 2014, also admitted Simonette R. Briones and Mary
Arlene B. Baltazar. The blanket and liberal adinission to the Program
stifles the prosecution of those who are clearly guilty, and undermines
the integrity of the Program itself, not to mention the people's faith in
59 People v. Gonzales, G.R. No. 105689, 23 February 1994.
41
43
JI
"',}:probity and trustwo'rthiness of the people who administer the
.. g r m ~
. 8.65. Based on records, the "whistleblowers" are the only ones
ho are guilty of the crimes charged. Thus, the require1nent under RA
, 81 that the witnesses should not be the "most guilty" is not and
nnot be complied with.
8.66. In addition to t];ie foregoing, .assu1ning that all witnesses
ay be admitted to the program, they are only immunized with
espect to the cases filed by the DOJ - and not with respect to the
'cases filed by the FIO and SENATOR REVILLA.
8.67. At present, there are two separate Criminal Co1nplaints
>filed before respondent OMBUDSMAN. One was filed by the NBI and
>the other, by the FIO of respondent OMBUDSMAN. These Criminal
Complaints remain to be separate. despite their consolidation. Thus,
when respondent OMBUDSMAN stated that it "gives full faith and
credit to the Certification issued by Secretary De Lima,"
60
it should
have found that while the "whistleblowers" have immunity with
respect to the cases filed by the NBI, they do not have such immunity
from prosecution with regard to the FIO Criminal Complaint, much
less on the counter-charge of SENATOR REVILLA against them. This
is evident on the face of the Certificate of Admission.
8.68. The Certificate bf Admission purportedly issued by the
DOJ and was attached to the Joint Order clearly stated that Benhur
K. Luy, Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina Sula (together with Simonette
R. Briones and Mary Arlene B. Baltazar) were granted ilnmunity only
with respect to the "cases filed by the NBI," thus:
60
"CERTIFICATE OF ADMISSION
This is to certify that: .
Naine ofWitnesses
1. BENHUR K. LUY
2. MARINA SULA
3. SIMONETTE R. BRIONES
4. MARY ARLENE B. BALTAZAR
5. MERLINA P SuNAS
have been granted regular admission. to the Program on 01
December 2013, pursuant to the provisions of Sections 1 & 2, Title
of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of R.A. 6981 (Witness
Protection Security and Benefits Act) for the following cases
Joint Order dated 28 January 2014, p. 11.
42
11
filed by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI)
before the Office of ~ 01nbudsman: xxx"6
1
8.69. As the FIO is under respondent OMBUDSMAN, which is
ot mentioned or empowered by R.A. 6981 to grant immunity, and
ecause the immunity granted by the DOJ to the "whistleblowers,"
.ASSUMING WITHOUT GRANTING that such is proper, only
h.tended to the "cases filed by the NBI," the Criminal Complaints
!against them filed by the FIO and by SENATOR REVILLA must
'proceed. To hold otherwise (as what the respondent OMBUDSMAN
1did), constitutes grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess
of jurisdiction.
IX
ALLEGATIONS IN SUPPORT OF APPLICATION FOR THE
ISSUANCE OF A TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER
AND/OR WRIT OF PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION
i
9.1. SENATOR REVILLA adopts, by reference, all the
allegations in the preceding paragraphs in support of his application
for the issuance of a Temporary Restraining Order ("TRO") and/or
... Writ of Preliminary Injunction to enjoin respondent OMBUDSMAN
. and all other person or persons acting for and on its behalf from
further proceeding with the preliminary investigation and any
subsequent criminal prosecution arising from the said investigation,
and from issuing any further orders related thereto while this Petition
is pending.
9.2. Section 7, Rule 65 of the Rules of Court empowers the
Honorable Court to grant injunctive relief in Certiorari and
Prohibition cases "for the preservation of the rights of the parties
pending such proceedings." More particularly, under Section 3, Rule
58 of the Rules of Court, injunctive relief inay issue upon a showing
that:
61
\ .
"(a) That the applicant is entitled to the relief
demanded, and the whole or part of such relief consists in
restraining the commission or continuance of the act or
acts complained of, or in requiring the performance of an act or
acts, either for a limited period or perpetually
(b) That the commission, continuance or non-
performance of the act or acts complained of during the
litigation would probably work injustice to the applicant;
or
(c) That a party, court or agency or a person is doing,
threatening, or attempting to do, or is procuring or
suffering to be done, some act or acts probably in
Underscoring and emphasis supplied.
43
11
violation of the rights of the applicant respecting the
subject of the action or proceeding, and tending to render
the judgment ineffectual."
. 9.3. In Manila International Airport Authority vs. Rivera
Village Lessee Homeowners Association, Incorporated,
62
the
Honorable Court further explained the nature of this writ, thus:
"Injunction is a preservative remedy aimed at protecting
substantive rights and interests .. The writ of preliminary injunction
is issued by the court to prevent threatened or continuous
irreparable injury to parties before their -claims can be thoroughly
studied and adjudicated. Its sole objective is to preserve the status
quo until the merits of the case can be heard fully. The writ is issued
upon the satisfaction of two requisites, namely: (1) the existence of
a right to be protected; and (2) acts which are violative of said right.
In the absence of a clear legal right, the issuance of the injunctive
relief constitutes grave abuse of discretion. Injunction is not
designed to protect contingent or future rights. Where the
complainant's right is doubtful or disputed, injunction is not
proper. The possibility of irreparable damage without proof of
actual existing right is not a ground for an injunction. "
6
3
9-4. In Medina v. Greenfield Develop1nent Corporation
6
4, the
Honorable Court enu1nerated the requisites for the proper issuance of
an injunctive writ, thus:
"The purpose of a preliminary injunction is to prevent
threatened or continuous irremediable injury to some of the parties
before their claims can ~ thoroughly studied and adjudicated. Its
sole aim is to preserve the
1
status quo until the merits of the case can
be heard fully. Thus, to be entitled to an injunctive writ, the
petitioner has the burden to establish the following requisites:
(1) a right in esse or a clear and unmistakable right to be
protected;
(2) a violation of that right;
(3) that there is an urgent and permanent act and urgent
necessity for the writ to prevent serious damage."
6
5
9.5. The Honorable Court elucidated on the purpose of an
injunctive relief as follows:
"It is a well-settled rule that the sole object of a preliminary
injunction, whether prohibitory or mandatory, is to preserve the
status quo until the merits of the case can be heard. It is usually
granted when it is made to appear that there is a substantial
controversy between the parties and one of them is committing an
act or threatening the immediate commission of an act that will
G.R. No. 143870, 30 September 2005, 471 SCRA 358.
Ibid., at 379-380; emphasis and underscoring supplied.
G.R. No. 140228, 19 November 2004, 443 SCRA 150.
Ibid., at 159.
44
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11
cause irreparable injury or destroy the status quo of the controversy
before a full hearing can be had on the merits of the case."
66
9.6. Notably, the Honorable Court has further clarified the
requisites for the issuance of an injunctive writ in this wise:
"[T]he requisites for preliminary injunctive relief are: (a) the
invasion of right sought to be protected is material and substantial;
(b) the right of the plaintiff is clear and unmistakable; and ( c) there
is an urgent and paramount necessity for the writ to prevent serious
damage. As such, a writ of preliminary injunction may be issued
only upon clear showing of an actual existing right to be protected
during the pendency of the principal action. The twin requirements
of a valid injunction are the existence of a right and its actual or
threatened violation. Thus, to be entitled to an injunctive writ, the
right to be protected and the violation against that right must be
shown."67
9.7. In relation to the foregoing rules and jurisprudence, the
Honorable Court is duty-bound to enjoin the proceedings of cri1ninal
cases when the situation calls for such an application. Rooted in the
landmark case of Brocka v. Enrile,6
8
it is well settled in jurisprudence
that under certain instances, criminal prosecution may be restrained
through a preliminary or final injunction or a writ of prohibition.
6
9
This Honorable Court has held that preliininary or final injunction or
a writ of prohibition may restrain the criminal prosecution before
respondent OMBUDSMAN, or any other criminal proceeding in
general, if any of the following circumstances are present:
66
68
69
"(1) To afford adequate protection to the
constitutional rights of the accused;
(2) When necessary for the orderly administration justice or
to avoid oppression or multiplicity of actions;
(3) When there is a pre-judicial question which is
sub-judice;
(4) When the acts of the officer are without or in
excess of authority;
Felix de Guzman Ocampo v. Alicia Sison vda. De Fernandez, G.R. No. 164529, 19 June
2007 525 SCRA 79, 94; citing Rava Development Corporation v. Court of Appeals, G.R.
No. 96825, 3 July 1992, 211 SCRA 144, 154.
Duvaz Corporation v. Export and Industry Bank, G.R. No. 163011, 7 June 2007, 523
SCRA 405, 413; emphasis in the original. See also Spouses Luis K.S. Lim and Chua Siam
v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 134617, 13 February 2006, 482 SCRA 326, 331.
G.R. No. 69863-65, 10 December 1990, 192 SCRA 183.
See People v. Rey, G.R. No. 180109, 26 July 2010, 625 SCRA 57; Yupanco Cotton Mills,
Inc. v. Medoza, G.R. No. 139912, 31 March 2005, 454 SCRA 386; Venus v. Desierto, G.R
No. 130319, 21 October 1998, 298 SCRA 196; Commi,ssioner on Internal Revenue v. C'
G.R. No. 119322, 4 June 1996, 257 SCRJ\__200; Paredes v. Sandiganbayan, G.R.
108251, 31January1996, 252 SCRA 641;
45
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(5) VVhere the prosecution is under an invalid law, ordinance
regulation;
(;;:
(6) When double jeopardy is clearly apparent;
(7) Where the court has no jurisdiction over the offense;
(8) Where it is !! case of persecution rather than
prosecution;
(9) Where the charges are manifestly false and motivated by
lust for vengeance;
(10) When there is clearly no prima facie case against the
accused and a motion to qtiash on that ground has been denied;
(11) Preliminary injunction has been issued by the Supreme
Court to prevent the threatened unlawful arrest of petitioners. "7
;, .. 9.8. As applied to the facts of this case, the foregoing legal
ackdrop clearly demands that this Honorable Court issue a TRO
'rtd/or a Writ of Preliminary Injunction to stop any further criminal
,prosecution proceedings before the respondent OMBUDSMAN or the
courts.
he grounds for the issuance of a
,preliminary injunction, as outlined in
.,,Section 3, Rule 58 of the Rules of Court,
;. are present in this case.
. 9.9. As pointed out, ;Section 3, Rule 58 of the Rules of Court
lays down the grounds or instances which call for the issuance of a
., preliminary injunction. All of the three (3) grounds are present in this
case.
9.10. First. The applicant is entitled to the relief demanded,
and the whole or part of such relief consists in restraining the
continuance of the act complained of.
9.11. The primary relief de1nanded in this Petition is the
annulment, reversal and setting aside of the ASSAILED ORDERS
which denied the Motions to Suspend and effectively allowed the
criminal proceedings before respondent OMBUDSMAN to proceed
despite the presence of a prejudicial question. As conclusively
established above, there is a prejudicial question in the Civil Case
which demands the suspension of the proceedings a quo. SENATOR
REVILIA, herein applicant of the remedy of TRO and/or preliininary
injunction, is therefore entitled to the reli_ef de1nanded.
70 Brocka v. Enrile, G.R. No. 69863-65, 10 December 1990, 192 SCRA 183; citations
omitted; emphasis and underscoring supplied.
46
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;,
/ 9.12. Second. The continuance of the acts complained of
ld probably work injustice to the applicant.
!: 9.13. As discussed the ratiopale behind the principle of
' ejudicial question is to avoid two conflicting decisions. 7
1
As it
SENATOR REVILLA is currently involved in litigating three
.. cases, the Civil Case before RTC Bacoor, and the FIO
omplaint and the NBI Complaint pending before respondent
MBUDSMAN. It would work as an injustice to drag SENATOR
REVILLA to spend a great ainount of tilne, and an enorinous amount
. f money, in order to pursue the Civil Case while at the same time
.defending and subjecting himself to the hassle and pain of the two
criminal cases pending before respondent OMBUDSMAN, when a
.decision in the Civil Case could possibly conflict with the outcome of
the cases pending before respondent 0 MBUDSMAN.
9.14. The Honorable Court should restrain the proceedings
before respondent OMBUDSMAN, on account of prejudicial question,
. as it is unfair and would result to inanifest injustice for SENATOR
REVILLA to continue defending 'hhnself on several fronts when the
<law, rules and jurisprudence n1andates that the Civil Case should take
.. precedence over the Criminal Cases.
9.15. In addition, SENATOR REVILLA is currently being
investigated before respondent OMBUDSMAN for a cri1ne that metes
out the penalty of reclusion perpetua. If a finding of probable cause is
made against SENATOR REVILLA despite the presence of a
prejudicial question, in all probability SENATOR REVILLA would be
issued a warrant of arrest. SENATOR REVILLA could spend tiine in
jail waiting for the criminal proceedings to be concluded, when in
fact, in the first place, such criminal proceedings should have been
suspended due to the clear presence of a prejudicial question.
9.16. This is clearly a situation where the failure to enjoin the
proceedings before respondent OMBUDSMAN would work injustice
to SENATOR REVILLA.
9.17. Lastly. Respondent OMBUDSMAN's conduct violates the
rights of SENATOR REVILLA.
9.18. As already established, a prejudicial question exists in the
proceedings a quo by reason of the Civil Case pending before the RTC
Bacoor. It is, therefore, SENATOR REVILLA's right, as a matter of
law and rules, to have the preliminary investigation before
respondent OMBUDSMAN suspended pending the determination in
the Civil Case of RTC Bacoor. In denying the Motions to Suspend and
7
1
People v. Delizo, G.R. No. 141624, 17 August 2004, 436 SCRA 615.
47
ceeding to conduct the proceedings a quo, respondent
,BUDSMAN continuously violates SENATOR REVILLA's right
ted to him by law, rules and jurisprudence.
the criininal proceedings before respondent
MBUDSMAN are not enjoined, the Constitutional rights of
ENATOR REVILLA will likewise be violated. Hence, an urgent
by the preservative remedy of a TRO and / or Prelhninary
junction is absolutely necessary. '
... 9.20. SENATOR REVILLA will suffer grave injustice and
, 'rreparable and far-reaching injury should the proceedings before
!respondent OMBUDSMAN, :and any criminal prosecution
arising from the same, be not enjoined. By the time a decision in this
. Petition, which decision, SENATOR REVILLA believes, will reverse
the ASSAILED ORDERS, is pro1nulgated without the injunctive relief
being applied for herein being issued in the interim, a similar reversal
of the injustice and injury already sustained by SENATOR REVILLA
. would no longer be possible. Considering that the circumstances of
. this case fulfil all of the three (3) requisites laid down in Section 3,
Rule 58 of the Rules of Court, this Honorable Court must issue a TRO
and/or a writ of preliminary injunction to suspend the proceedings a
quo pending resolution of this Petition.
The circumstances 1-hat justify . the
issuance of an injunctive relief against-
a criminal proceeding are present in
this case.
9.21. At the outset, it
1
inust be emphasized that the Honorable
Court may interfere with the discretion of respondent OMBUDSMAN
in cases where the latter acted with grave abuse of discretion. In fact,
even the power to determine whether or not probable cause exists
may be interfered with by the Honorable Court if grave abuse of
discretion is evident. This doctrine is expressed in Tetangco v.
Ombudsman,7
2
where the Honorable Court held, thus:
"It is well-settled that the Court will not ordinarily interfere
with the Ombudsman's determination of whether or not probable
cause exists except when it commits grave abuse of discretion.
Grave abuse of discretion exists where a power is exercised in an
arbitrary, capricious, whimsical or despotic manner by reason of
passion or personal hostility so patent and gross as to amount to
evasion of positive duty or virtual refusal to perform a duty
enjoined by, or in contemplation oflaw."73
72 G.R. No. 156427, 20 January 2006, 479 SCRA 249.
73 Ibid, at 253.
48
50
9.22. It is, therefore, clear that the Honorable Court has the
rto interfere with the criminal proceedings before respondent
UDSMAN by suspending or restraining the continuation of the
through injunctive relief. There are instances when this
: . u.orable Court is justified enjoining cri1ninal prosecution, even

pending before the dmbuds1nan. Such circu1nstances pointed


in Brocka are present in this case.
9.23. First. An injunction relief 1nay be issued against a
riminal proceeding to afford adequate protection to the
rights of the Petitioner.
9.24. It is a basic in Constitutional law that no person shall be
eld to answer for a criminal offense without due process of the law .
. tis likewise a Constitutional right for a person not to be deprived of
liberty without due process of the law. Respondent OMBUDSMAN
violated and continues to violate SENATOR REVILLA's due process
:rights.
9.25. Due process in crhninal cases is defined by the Honorable
Court inAlonte v. Savellano,74 thus:
! .
"Jurisprudence acknowledges that due process in criminal
proceedings, in particular, require (a) that the court or tribunal
!eying the case is properly clothed with judicial power to hear
and determine the matter before it; (b) that jurisdiction is lawfully
. acquired by it over the person of the accused; (c) that the accused is given
an opportunity to be heard; and (d) that judgment is rendered only
upon lawful hearing. The above constitutional and jurisprudential
postulates, by now elementary and deeply imbedded in our own criminal
justice system, are mandatory and indispensable. The principles find
universal acceptance and aretersely expressed in the oft-quoted statement
that procedural due process cannot possibly be met without a 'law which
hears before it condemns, which proceeds upon inquiry and renders
judgment only after trial."'75
9.26. Respondent OMBUDSMAN, in an exercise of grave abuse
of discretion amounting to lack or in excess of its jurisdiction, denied
the Motions to Suspend of SENATOR REVILLA despite the clear
presence of a prejudicial Such is repugnant to due process.
9.27. Respondent OMBUDSMAN's stubborn refusal to suspend
the preliminary investigation against SENATOR REVILLA despite the
existence of a proper and legal basis therefor is reflective of
respondent OMBUDSMAN's conduct to unduly hasten, nay railroad,
the finding of probable cause against SENATOR REVILLA, which is
violative of SENATOR REVILLA's due process rights.
74
75
G.R. Nos. 131652 & 131728, 9 March 1998, 287 SCRA 245.
Ibid, at 261.
49
9.28. This slipshod rushing through a criminal proceeding in
order to prosecute the accused is called out by Alonte as being against
. due process. It stated thus:
There can be-no short-cut to the legal process, and
there can be no excuse for not affording an accused his
full day in court. Due process, rightly occupying the first and
foremost place of honor in our Bill of Rights, is an enshrined and
invaluable right that cannot be denied even to the most
undeserving.
9.29. The short-cuts that are being taken by respondent
OMBUDSMAN, and its refusal to allow the proper determination of
the Civil Case is a violation: of the right to due process of SENATOR
REVILLA. I
9.30. The continuation of the proceedings a quo , despite the
existence of a prejudicial question which warrant the suspension
hereof, is a clear violation of SENATOR REVILLA's constitutional
right to due process and proper procedure, a right that is a proper
subject of the protection of an injunctive writ aimed at preventing
serious injury and injustice to SENATOR REVILLA.
. .
9.31. Second. There is a prejudicial question which is sub-
judice.
9.32. At the risk of being repetitive, there is a prejudicial
question in this case and it has been aptly established in the above
discussion. This circu1nstance for the restraint of cri1ninal
proceedings is clear. As long as there is a prejudicial question which is
still being tried - as in the C'.:ivil Case - the cri111inal prosecution inust
be enjoined. The suspension of the cri111inal proceedings which was
not granted by respondent OMBUDSMAN, must be given by the
Honorable Court through a TRO and/or a writ of preliminary
injunction.
9.33. Third. The acts of the officer are without or in excess of
authority.
9.34. As pointed out previously, respondent OMBUDSMAN
committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of
jurisdiction, when it denied the Motions to Suspend filed by
SENATOR REVILLA. It continues to act excess of its jurisdiction or
its authority in continuing the crilninal prosecution that it should
have rightfully suspended.
so
grant the prayer for injunctive
.efis to protect SENATOR REVILLA
J> irreparable inju1y.
,.... ,...,
... , . '
Vd
9.35. Respondent OMBUDSMAN's patent and grave abuse of
)cretion in issuing the ASSAILED ORDERS denying SENATOR
' VILIA's prayer for suspension, when in fact such suspension is
.. andatory due to the existence of a prejudicial question, indisputably
bnfers upon SENATOR REVILLA the right to have the proceedings
1
efore respondent OMBUDSMAN discontinued. It is only with the
omplete discontinuance of the proceedings a quo that SENATOR
REVILIA will be fully protected from the irreparable injury that
naturally arises from being co1npelled to participate in criminal
proceedings before a body or a court that does not yet have the right
'to proceed and prosecute.
,. 9.36. To allow the proceedings a quo to continue as a result of
>the issuance of the ASSAILED ORDERS (denying the prayer for
suspension) while the Civil Case is still being tried would only serve to
disrupt the orderly proceedings before this Honorable Court. The
dictates of order and practicality require that the proceedings be
stayed until all the issues have been threshed out in the Civil Case and
. before this Honorable Court and final decisions be rendered thereby.
9.37. Injury is considered irreparable if it is of such constant
and frequent recurrence that no fair or reasonable redress can be had
in a court of law or where there is no standard by which their mnount
can be measured with reasonable accuracy, that is, not susceptible of
mathematical computation. 76
9.38. Injunctive relief, such as a TRO and a Writ of Preliminary
Injunction, are preservative remedies for the protection of
substantive rights, not the least Constitutional rights, particularly in
instances of "pressing necessity to avoid injurious consequences
which cannot be remedied under any standard co1npensation. Its
issuance rests upon the existence of an emergency or a special
reason before the main case can be regularly heard. "77 The
controlling reason for the existence of the judicial power to issue an
injunctive writ is the prevention of "a threatened or continuous
irremediable injury to some of the parties before their clahns can be
thoroughly investigated and advisedly adjudicated."78 Particularly, a
TRO is calculated "to preserve the status quo until the hearing of the
7
6
PVTA v. De Los Angeles, No. L-27829, 19 August 1988, 164 SCRA 543.
77 Pascual v. Dumlao, A.M. No. MTJ-01-1350, 20 July 2001, 361SCRA478, 485-486.
7
8
Idolorv. Court of Appeals,_G.R. No.141853, 7 February 2001, 351SCRA399, 405.
51
:plication for preliminary injunction"79 and thus may be issued ex
rte.
80
9.39. Such preservative remedy is clearly necessary to protect
. e rights of SENATOR REVILLA.
x
PRAYER
WHEREFORE, SENATOR REVILLA respectfully prays that the
..Honorable Court:
1. Upon the filing of the instant Petition, immediately
: ISSUE a Temporary Restraining Order and/ or a Writ of Preliminary
Injunction, enjoining the Office of the Ombudsman and any other
.. person or persons acting for or on its behalf fro1n continuing with the
.. proceedings in OMB-C-C-13-0316 and OMB-C-C-13-0395 as against
. SENATOR REVILLA;
2. GIVE due course to the Petition;
3. After proper proceedings, RENDER judgment, ordering
the issuance of:
79
80
a) a writ of CERTIORAJ ANNULLING, SETTING
ASIDE and REVERSING the Order dated 28 January 2014 and
Order dated 3 March 2014 of the Office of the Ombudsman in
OMB-C-C-13-0316 and OMB-C-C-13-0395 and ORDER the
Preliminary Investigation on, in light of SENATOR REVILLA's
criminal co1nplaints against, Dennis L. Cunanan, Antonio Y.
Ortiz, Alan A. Javellana, Gondelina G. Amata, Salvador Salacup,
1.Ylylene T. Encarnacion, Nemesio Pablo, Evelyn De Leon,
Jocelyn Piorato, John Rayinund de Asis and Ronaldo John Lim,
Benhur K. Luy, Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina Sula; and,
b) a writ of PROHIBITION to restrain the Office of
the Ombudsman fro1n further proceeding in OMB-C-C-13-0316
and as against SENATOR REVILLA,
pending a full and final detennination of Civil Case No. BCV-
2013-193, entitled, "Ran1on "Bong" Revilla, Jr. v. Benhur K.
Luy, Jocelyn D. Piorato, Marina C. Sula, Nemesio Pablo,
Miriam College Foundation v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 127930, 15 December 2000,
328 SCRA265, 277.
RULES OF COURT, Rule 58, Section 5.
52
I
l
Petronilla A. Balmaceda, Evelyn de Leon, and John Doe," as it
presents a prejudicial question that must first be resolved.
i,j SENATOR REVILLA further prays for such other relief as may
just and equitable in the premises.
Muntinlupa City for the City of Manila, 12 March 2014.
BODEGON ESTORNINOS GUERZON
BORJE & GOZOS
Counsel for Senator Revilla
5th Floor Park Trade Centre, 1716 Investment Drive
Madrigal Business Park, Alabang 1780
Muntinlupa City
Telephone No. 772-5289
By:
J
PTR No. 149112 15 J . 201
IBP (Lifetime . 03998, Sorsogon
Roll of Attorneys No. 25935
MCLE Compliance IV-0013625 1i.03.13
.
O!/V\M
NO .GAVINO
PTR No. 1491133, 15 Jan. 2014, Muntinlupa City
IBP No. 961119, 23 Jan. 2014, Makati City
Roll of Attorneys No. 61296
MCLE Compliance No: IV-0017072 16.04.13
~ ~
PTR No. 14991134, 15 Jan. 2014, Muntinlupa City
IBP No. 961117, 23 Jan. 2014, PPLM
Roll of Attorneys No. 61108
MCLE C01npliance No. IV- 0009847 29.1i.12
53
ii
.,
'

PTR No. 1491135, 15 Jan. 2014, Muntinlupa City
IBP No. 961120, 23 Jan. 2014, South Cotabato
Roll of Attorneys No. 60468
MCLE Compliance No. IV-0013700 11.03.13
KRISTINE J . PERDITO
PTR No. 1491136, 15 a . 2014, Muntinlupa City
IBP No. 961:118, 23 Jan. 2014, PPLM
Roll of Attorneys No. 62539
MCLE Compliance No. (Not yet required)
VERIFICATION AND
CERTIFICATION AGAINST FORUM SHOPPING
.. I, RAMON "BONG" REVILLA, JR., after being duly sworn
. rding to law, do hereby depose and state:
1. I am the petitioner in the above-entitled case;
2. I have caused the preparation of the foregoing Petition, and
e allegations contained therein are true and correct on the basis of my
ersonal knowledge and the documents made available to me;
3. I certify that I have not heretofore commenced any action
r filed any claim involving the same facts and issues in any court,
'bunal or quasi-judicial agency, and to the best of my knowledge, no
such other action or claim is pending therein, except the civil suit I filed
with the Regional Trial Court of Bacoor, Cavite, docketed as Civil Case
No. BCV-2013-193, entitled "Senator Ramon "Bong" Revilla, Jr. v.
JBenhur Luy, et al."; and
4. Should I learn hereafter that the same or similar action or
claim has been filed or is pending, I undertake to inform the
Honorable Court of such fact within five (5) days from such
knowledge.
FURTHER, affiant sayeth naught.
SENATOR
5G
-'
' ,
i\!UN1'J.NLLW1\ crry \ "'"''
. '"'
AND SUBSCRIBED TO before me this of March
atfiant exhibiting to me his Diplomatic Passport Identification
Pooo6735 expiring on 10 June 2015.
. ' "
, FFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN
pmbudsman Bldg., Agham Road
Government Center, North Triangle
Diliman, Quezon City
'-':
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
1'. Faura, Manila
,,, ....
Not<U'v Public for \lu111inlt1p:t Cir\
{inti! DtTc111ht1 if,,,,,-; .
N01;iri:d I '11m111i"i1111 ''' 1 LiJ.\j
R .. :1 oi \tt"rn"'' "'" li+.!
IBP N(I. 'hi 1.i.'. 1 l.th1. l I I 'Pl .. \.1
PTR No. 14:y:; ll>/OJ.1111. J 4/ .\lunti11lupa City
MCEE Compliance \In. l\'-tiOJtJ.?t2/12.l l.12
Suil'l' Park Ttadr C.:nttt, 17 ](, ltl\'t.'Hment Oriv,
!'ark. ,\yotl.i-,\lahang, '
Munrinlupa City
.. NATIONAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
c:; NBI Building, Taft Avenue
"Ermita, Manila
... A'TIY LEVITO D BALIGODif. Bf-\UGOD-,
.n CAW rn=FIJ:!:;:
3/F The Lydia Bldg. .. -
39 Polaris St. Bel-Air, Makati /
..::. :"An-- ..- I
- - ...i;:J..0,- f
FIELD INVESTIGATION OFFICE
Ombudsman Bldg., Agham Ro.Qd ...... .
Government Center, NorthTriang" le .. " ......

Diliman, Quezon City
55
AFFIDAVIT OF SERVICE BY PERSONAL SERVE
. F. NECIO, a messenger ofBodegon Estorninos Guerzon Borje & Gozos
s, with office address at 502 Park Trade Center, 1716 Investment Drive, Madrigal
k, Alabang, 1789 Muntinlupa City, after being duly sworn, depose and say:
March 2014, I served copies of the pleading/paper PETITION FOR
AND PROIDBITION dated 12 March 20 in the G.R. No.
'-"-------' "SENATOR RAMON "BONG" REVILLA, JR. V. OFFICE OF THE
. , THROUGH ITS SPECIAL PANEL OF INVESTORS, NATIONAL BUREAU OF
LEVITO D. BALIGOD AND FIELD INVESTIGATION OFFICE OF THE
:jv.rAN", before the Supreme Court, Manila, pursuant to the 1997 Revised Rules of
allows:
fr,,.'
FFlCEOFTHEOMBUDSMAN
mbudsman Bldg., Agham Road
Center, North Triangle
iliman, Quezon City
1:
'"'
BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
.. I Building, Taft Avenue
... rmita, Manila
'TTY. LEVITO D. BALIGOD
/F The Lydia Bldg.
-9 Polaris St. Bel-Air, Makati
}?IEW INVESTIGATION OFFICE
Ombudsman Bldg., Agham Road
Government Center, North Triangle
.Diliman, Quezon City
SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN to before me th"
City, affiant exhibiting to me his Dr
e,d at Alabang Town Center on 6 October 2010 and expi
['.111 1n P11hlk for Cit)

l'(n1;ui;d ( 11mmi,,ion 1 1-u:H
ft..,11 of r\ ttornrvs No. 11 ti _.4
IRP No. '1'11'>02/01.()(,,\4:
P:R No. l 4'9211>/01.0<>. 14/ Clty
MCLF CompUanct No. IV-0010202/12.1 l.12
Suitt 806 Park Trade Centre, 1716 Drive,
Park, Ayala-Alabang,
Munonlup-' City
! COfVT ACT US:
EGON ESTORNINOS LAW.
BORJE & Gozos
I Website: www.ombudsman.gov.pl
0 B CRD Trunkline: local 2
Look for Sir Milar
;Gavino
'ne E:Yu
la Cruz
teerdito
eA.Yap
j .
10 March 2 f4NGGAPA. G OMBUDSMA


''
------
OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN
Ombudsman Building, Agham Road
North Triangle, Diliman

L. t
I . I
Quezon City 1101
Re: a) OMB-C-C-13-0316, entitled "National
Bureau of Investigation, et al. v. Ramon "Bong"
Revilla, Jr. et al."; and,
Gentlemen:
b) OMB-C-C-13-0305, entitled "Field
Investigation Office v. Ramon "Bong" Revilla, Jr.,
et al."

This is to authorize our liaison officer, MR. RUEL F. NECIO, to secure
and receive certified true copies of the Joint Order dated 28 January 2014
and the Joint Order dated 03 March 2014 issued by the Honorable Office
in the captioned cases.
Thank you for your kind consideration of this most urgent request.
Very truly yours,
.PERDITO
! . .:\ f
M. Revilla, Jr., et al.; and
\
' 1 1 A t N 7080 as amended
1 As defined and penalized under Repu J ic c o. '
,,,
Republic of the Philippinei\NNEX '* - ll .. -"
OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN
Ombudsman Bldg., Agham Road, Government Center G ()
North.Triangle, Diliman, Quezon Law Office
ATIONAL BUREAU OF
NVESTIGATION and LEVITO

ALIGOD,
Complainant,
- versus - OMB-C-C-13-0316
., AMON ,,BONG" M. REVILLA, JR., ET

Respondenl-s.
-------------------------------------------------------------x
"
FIELD INVESTIGATION OFFICE,
Complainant,
- versus- OMB-C-C-13-0395
, JJBONG" M. REVILLA, JR., ET
.., ;;AL.
jt I
Respondents.
{(---------------------------------------------------------------------------,---------------------------------------x
JOINT ORDER
This resolves the following motions/incidents pending before this Office, to wit:
(a) Respondent Senator Ramon M. Revilla, Jr.'s 1'.fotion tq Suspend Preliminarv
Investigation dated 15 January 2014 (the Motion);
(b) Respondent Revilla's .counter-charge for Pluncler
1
against his co-respondents
Dennis L. Cunanan, Antonio Y. Ortiz, Alan A. Javellana, Gondelina G.
Amata, Salvador Salacup, Mylene T. Encarnacion, Nemesio Pablo, Evelyn De
Leon, Jocelyn Piorato, John Raymund de Asis and Ronald John Lim, as well
as complainants National Bureau of Investigation (the NBI) and Field
Investigation Office's (the FIO) witnesses Benhur K. Luy, MerliJ..1.a P. Suii.as
and Marina C. Sula, and one Petronilla Balmaceda, as stated in his Counter-
Affidavit dated 1!2_1lnuary 2014 in OMB-C-C-13-0395, Field Investigation Office
v. Ramon lvl.. Revilla, fr., et al. and Counter-Affidavit dated 15 Ianuary 2014 in
OMB-C-C-13-0316, National Bureau of Investigation and Levito Baligod v. Ramon
M. Revilla, Jr., et nl.; and
)'.As defined and penalized under Republic Act No. 7080, as amended.
'.Joint Order

OMB-C-C-13-0395
1
: Page 2of13
(c) Respondent Richard Cambe's prayer for suspension of the preliminary
investigation, as incorporated in his Counter-Affidavit dated 20 Ianuary
2014.
Respondents Revilla and Cambe separately move for the suspension of the
.preliminary investigation of subject cases on grounds that: respondent Revilla had
earlier filed a civil suit for declaration of nullity of the letters, memoranda of agreement,
vouchers, reports, certificates and similar records relating to Priority Development
Assistance Fund (PDAF) projects which he sponsored (collectively, the PDAF
1
documents), and for collection of sum of money with damages against respondents De
Leon, Pioranto and Pablo, as well as witnesses Luy, Sufias and Sula, and Balmaceda
: before the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Bacoor, Cavite; the PDAF documents relied
upon by the FIO and the NBI were "products of forgery or made without their authorih;;"
should the RTC declare the PDAF documents to be null and void in so far as they are
concerned, they cannot be held liable for Plunder, Malversation or violation of Republic
,. Act (R. A.) No. 3019;
2
and the resolution of the main issue in the civil suit, i.e.
authenticity of the PDAF documents, will necessarily determine their guilt or
. mnocence.
In support of their motions, respondents Revilla and Cambe submitted copies of:
(a) respondent Revilla's Complaint filed on 13 September 2013 before the Bacoor, Cavite
, RTC
3
which was docketed as Civil Case No. BCV-2013-193, Ramon Revilla, Jr. v. Benhur
K. Luy, et al. (the Revilla Complaint); (b) respondent Cambe' s Motion for Leave to File
Complaint-in-Intervention and Complaint-in-Intervention dated 15 September 2013
(collectively, the Cambe Complaint) filed before the Bacoor RTC echoing the same
causes of action of respondent Revilla' s civil suit; and ( c) the RTC' s Order dated 20
. September 2013, which admitted the Cambe Complaint.
After a considered evaluation of the issues, this Office holds that no prejudicial
question exists to warrant the suspension of the preliminary investigation in subject
cases.
The counter-charge for Plunder against respondents Cunanan, Javellana, Amata,
Salacup, Encarnacion, Pablo, De Leon, Piorato, Asis and Lim, as well as against
< witnesses Luy, Sufi.as and Sula is DISiv1ISSED outright.
As for the counter-charge against Balmaceda, it requires referral to the FIO for
further fact-finding.
2
Otherwise known as the "Anti--Graft and Corrupt Practices Act."
3
ld, A nncx ''1."
G
Joint Order
.. OMB-C-C-13-0316
OMB-C-C-13-0395
Page 3of13
Respondent Revilla' s Motion and
Counter-Affidavits are procedurally
defective.
Discussion
It is settled that the provisions of the Rules of Court regarding the filing and
service of pleadings and motions apply to this proceeding,
4
Rule 13 of which states, in
part:
x x x
Section 5. Modes of service. - Service of pleadings, motions, notices, orders,
judgments and other papers shall be made either personally or by mail. (3a)
Section 6. Personal service. -- Service of the papers may be made by
delivering personally a copy to the party or his counsel, or by leaving it in his
office with his clerk or with a person having charge thereof. If no person is fow1d
in his office, or his office is not known, or he has no office, then by leaving the
copy, between the hours of eight in the morning and six in the evening, at the
party's or counsel's residence, if known, with a pen=.on of sufficient age and
discretion then residing therein.
Section 7. Service by mail. - Service by registered mail shall be made by
depositing the copy in the post office in a sealed envelope, plainly addressed to the
party or his counsel at his office, if known, otherwise at his residence, if known,
with postage fully prepaid, and with instructions to the postmaster to return the
mail to the sender after ten (10) days if undelivered. If no registry service is
available in the locality of either the senders or the addressee, service may be done
by ordinary mail. (Sa; Bar Malter No. 803, 17 February 1998)
x x x
Section 11. Priorities in modes of service and filing. - Whenever practicable,
the service and .filing of p_leadings and other papers shall be done personally.
Except with respect to papers emanating from the court, a resort to other modes
must be accompanied by a written explanation why the service or hling was not
done personally. A violation of this Rule may be cause to consider the paper as not
filed. (emphasis, underscoring and italics supplied)
x x x
. Compliance with procedural rules, including the aforementioned provisions on
pling and service of pleadings, motions, decisions, orders and other issuances, are
ecessary to the orderly administration of justice. As such, this Office, as a rule,
serves copies of rulings, notices and similar documents on the parties. It is
.uleV, Section 3 of Omh1dsman AdministrCltive Order No. 7, Series of 1990.
G

..i
when personal service is highly impractical or physically impossible that this
;ffice resorts to service through registered mail.

\ Respondent Revilla, however, inexplicably failed fo comply with the provisions
'Rule 13 Sections 5 6 7 and 11. His Motion and Counter-A idavits are thus
Records show that respondent Revilla's Motion and Counter-Affidavits were
rnished to complainants not through personal service or registered mail/ordinary
. '".,ail service of the Philippine Postal Corporation (PhilPost), but rather, were served
,vpon the FIO and the NBI through LBC, a private courier.
, Service by private courier is NOT among the acceptable modes of service under
.llie Rules of Court. Also, there is no showing that when copies of the Motion and
',\
qounter-Affidavits were sE:nt out to complainants, PhilPost' s registered/ordinary mail
were unavailable or suspended in Muntinlupa City, where respondent
.evilla's counsel is based. Philippine National Bank v. Deang Marketing Corporation and
erlita Deang
5
teaches:
x x x
More. Petitioner sen1ed and filed the lviotion for through a private
courier, LBC, a mode recQgJtized by the rules. Explanation for availing such
mode was not stated in the Motion. The mode was, nonetheless, clearly
unjustifiable, considering that (a) petitioner's handling counsel was based in
nearby San Fernando; (b) postal registry service is, for lack of explanation to the
conhary, available in Parnpanga;
21
( c) urgency is out of the equation because the
official date of filing done via private messengerial se1vice is the date of actual
receipt of the court, and had the motion been personally filed the following day
(May 15, 2006), it would have reached the court earlier. It thus shows that the
mode was utilized to obscure any indication that the motion was filed out of time.
(emphasis, italics and underscoring supplied)
21
While distance is an acceptable explanation why the motion was not served personally
upon respondents' counsel in Pasig City, no credible justification has been offered as to
whir the motion was not instead served b11 registl]red mail.
Rule 13, Section 10 of the Rules of Court, the rule on service by registered mail,
pnternplates two situations: (a) actual service, the completeness of which is determined
pan receipt by the addressee of the registered mail; and (b) constructive service, the
, rnpleteness of which is determined upon expiration of five (5) days from the date the
.ddressee received the first notice of the postmaster.
6
Similarly, in case of ordinary mail,
ervice is deemed completed either upon the recipient's actual receipt or, constructively,
.ron the expiration of ten (10) days after mailing.
<::;.R. No. 177931, December 8, 2008.
Philippine Airlines, Inc. v. Heirs of Bernardin J. Zamora, C.R. Nos. 164267 and 166996, March 31, 2009,
63
I
l '
I
I
' i
The above-stated presumptions on constructive service do not, however, apply to
made throu h rivate courier because it is not among those modes recognized
the Rules. It cannot simply be presumed that copies of the Motion and Counter-
)fidavits claimed to have been sent by respondent Revilla' s counsel to the PIO or the
' I reached these addressees. This Office has no way of verifying if respondent
service of co ies of his leadin s u on corn lainants was actually completed.
It need not be underlined that parties to this instant proceeding must fully comply
procedural rules because non-observance thereof may result in prejudice to
another litigant's substantive rights.7 As Asian Spirit Airlines v. Spouses Bautista
8
..
structs:
Procedural rules are tools design.ed ta facilitate the adiudicatian of cases.
Courts and litigants alike are, thus, enjoined to abide strictly by the rules. And
while the Court, in some instances, allows a relaxation in the application of the
rules, this, we stress, was never intended to forge a bastion for erring litigants to
violate the rules with impunity. Tii.e liberality in the interpretation and application
of the rules applies only in proper cases and under justifiable causes and
circumstances. While it is true that litigation is not a game of teclmicalities, it is
equally true that every case must be prosecuted in accordance with the prescribed
procedure to insure an orderly and speedy administration of justice. The instant
case is no exception to this rule. (emphasis, underscoring and italics supplied)
While this Office deems respondent Revilla' s resort to service by private courier as
, inexcusable violation of procedural rules to merit outright dismissal of his motion, it
evertheless decides to resolve his Motion and counter-charge in the interest of
. o prejudicial question exists as to
stify the suspension of preliminary
vestigation proceedings.
A prejudicial question is defined as:
... one that arises in a case the resolution of whkh is a logical antecedent of
the issue involved therein, and the cognizance of which pertains to another
tribunal. It is a question based on a fact distinct and separate from the crime but so
intimately connected with it that it determines the guilt or innocence of the
accused, and for it to suspend the criminal action, it must appear not only that said
case involves facts intimately related to those upon which the criminal prosecution
would be based but also that in the resolution of the issue or issues raised in the
civil case, the guilt or innocence of the accused would necessarily be determined.9
Lazaro v. Court of Appeals, 386 Phil 412, 417 (2000), citing Galang 1. CA, G.R. No. 76221, July 29, 1991,
99SCRA 683.
/imenti::I v. Pir:1cnt::>\ ;:ind People, c:;.R. No. 1720/SO, Septemb01 13, 20"0.
Under Rule 111, Section 7 of the Rules of Court, a prejudicial question exists when
following elements are present:
The elements of a prejudicial question are: (a) the previously instituted civil
action involves an issue similar or intimately related to the issue raised in the
subsequent criminal action and (b) the resolution of such issue determines whether
or not the criminal action may proceed. (underscoring supplied)
The aforementioned elements are clearly absent in this instance.
. First, it is respondents Revilla and Cambe's view that the main issues in their civil
"ses for nullification, collection and damages, i.e. the authenticity of the PDAF
cuments and the genuineness of the signatures purportedly appearing therein, are
ilar to or intimately related to the issues in subject O:tvlB-C-C-13-0316 and OMB-C-C-
which cases seek to determine the existence of probable cause to indict them
I' Plunder, Malversation and/or violation of Section 3 (e) of R. A. No. 3019.
It bears stressing that in the present criminal complaints, respondents Revilla and
.. ambe are not being charged with the crimes of Falsification of Official Documents and
f\(;
c.e use thereof, as defined by Articles 171 and 172 of the Revised Penal Code. They,
;rlong with several others, are charged with Plunder, Malversation and violation of
3 (e) of R. A. No. 3019 in relation to the supposed misuse or misappropriation of
:}mdreds of millions of Pesos in public funds allegedly drawn from respondent
Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) by way of fictitious or "ghost"

1ojects.

rt'.,
The elements of Plunder, as defined by Section 2 in relation to Section 1 ( d) of R. A.
o. 7080, as amended, are, as follows:
1. That the offender is a public officer who acts by himself or in connivance
with members of his family, relatives by affinity or consanguinity, business
associates, subordinates or other persons;
2. That he amassed, accumulated or acquired ill-gotten wealth through a
combination or series of the following overt or criminal acts: (a) through
misappropriation, conversion, misuse, malversation of public funds or raids
on the public treasury; (b) by receiving directly or indirectly, any
commission, gift, share, percentage, kickback or any other form of pecuniary
benefits from any person and/or entity in connection with any government
contract or project by reason of the office or position of the public officer; (c)
by the illegal or fraudulent conveyance or disposition of assets belonging to
the National Government or any of its subdivisions, agencies or
instrumentalities of government owned or controlled corporations or their
subsidiaries; (d) by obtaining, receiving or accepting any shares of stock,
equity or any other form of interest of participation, including the promise of
fuhl!e employment in any business enterprise or undertaking; (e) by
establishing agriculhual, industrial or commercial monopolies or other
combinations and/or implementation of d,ecrees and orders intended to
G
r--
,J
-C-C-13-0395
benefit particular persons or special interests; or (f) by taking advantage of
official position, authority, relationship, connection or influence to unjustly
enrich himself or themselves at the expense and to the damage and prejudice
of the Filipino people and the Republic of the Philippines; and
3. That the aggregate amount or total value of the ill-gotten wealth amassed,
accumulated or acquired is at least PHPS0,000,,000.00. (emphasis supplied).
On the other hand, the elements of Malversation are:
1. The offender is a public officer;
2. He or she had the custody or control of funds or property by reason of the
duties of his office;
3. Those funds or property were public funds or property for which he was
accountable; and
4. He or she appropriated, took, misappropriated or consented, or through
abandonment or negligence, permitted another person to take them.
10
Under Section 3 (e) of R. A. No. 3019, a person becomes criminally liable if three
!,(3) requisites are satisfied, viz.:
1. He or she must be a public officer discharging administrative, judicial or
official functions;
2. He or she must have acted with manifest partiality, evident bad faith or
inexcusable negligence; and
3. His or her action: (a) caused any undue injury to any party, including the
Government; or (b) gave any private party unwarranted benefits, advantage
or preference in the discharge of his or her functions.
11
Evidently, forgery or falsification, which is the gist of respondents f<.evilla and
:.Cambe's civil suits, is not a necessary element of the above-mentioned criminal offenses.
{The issues in these proceedings, and those raised in the and Cambe Complaints,
}are neither similar nor intimately related to one another.
't);>
Second, the PDAF documents, by themselves, a:i.-e not solely or exclusively
::"determinative of the existence of probable cause for Plunder, Malversation or violation
3 (e), or any offense for that matter.

A prejudicial question exists when the outcome of the civil case will directly and
affect the resolution of the criminal case. Yap v. Cabales
12
enlightens:
It must appear not only that the civil case involves the same facts upon which
the criminal prosecution would be based, but also that the resolution of the issues
raised in the civil action would be necessarily determinative of the guilt or
innocence of the accused. If the resolution of the issue in the civil action will not
Legrama v. Sandiganbayan, G.R. No. 178626, June 13, 2012.
Catacutan v. People, G.R. No. 175991, August 31, 2011.
G.R. No. 1S9rn6, ]L!nc 5 .. :ioo0.

,,.,
detennine the criminal responsibility of the accused in the criminal action based on
the same facts, or if there is: no necessity that the cfoil case be determined first
before taking up the criminal case, the civil case does not involve a prejudicial
question. (emphasis, underscoring and italics supplied)
This Office finds that the RTC' s resolution of the Revilla and Cambe Complaints
ill not affect the outcome of the preliminary investigation of subject cases. Each
roceeding may proceed independently of the other.
Even assuming arguendo that the RTC declares the PDAF documents and the
rignatures therein allegedly belonging to respondents H.evilla and Cambe as null and
.oid, it would only, if at all, affect the probative value of these documents and not the
, Respondents Revilla and Cambe are reminded that preliminary investigation
partakes of an investigative or inquisitorial power for the sole purpose of obtaining
information on what future action of a judicial nature may be taken.
13
The investigating
''prosecutor must consider the entirely of evidence available to determine whether the
;respondents should be formally indicted for the offenses they may be found to be liable.
this Office is not restricted to the PDAF documents or the sworn
executed by Luy .. Sufi.as and Sula in support of the NBI' s criminal complaint,
tin its determination of probable cause.

, It bears noting that the evidence submitted by the :\JBI and the FIO in support of
respective criminal complaints was not limited to the PDAF documents. Other
':documentary evidence was presented, including: (a) sworn statements of witnesses
;:other than Luy, Sunas and Sula; (b) business records of companies allegedly controlled
,,.
}by respondent Janet Lim Napoles; and (c) report/sin relation to the on-field verification
.;fconducted by the investigators in various provinces where the PDAF-funded projects
,;were purportedly implemented.
,. The probative value of the aforementioned documentary evidence will not be
by the RTC's disposition of the Revilla and Cambe Complaints as this Office is
to consider all documentary and testimonial evidence presented during
g,.prelirninary investigation.
"h
f{:

!ff;,
Third, the Revilla and Cambe Complaints are highly suspect.
q
'" As early as July 2011, respondent Revilla already knew about the PDAF documents
that signatures supposedly belonging to be him and respondent Cambe appeared

In a Letter dated 8 July 2011, the Commission on Audit (the COA) informed
Revilla of the existence of documents submitted by several non-government
organizations and people's organizations in relation to projects fu:Rded by his PDAF,
referred to as the documents, and requested him to confirm if the
'

13
Oclchigue-Bondnc v. Tim Ti0nr; Bio, GR No. 186652, Octoher 6, 2010.
.
67
;signatures in the PDAF documents which allegedly belonged to him and respondent
:Richard Cambe, then a member of his staff, were authentic. Receipt of this COA letter
was confirmed by respondent Revilla in the Revilla Complaint:
2.11 On 11 July 2011, the Office of Plaintiff Revilla received the COA letter
dated 8 July 2011 requesting Plaintiff Revilla to confirm whether the signatures
appearing on the PDAF documents are his or those of his staff, Atty. Cambe.
(underscoring supplied)
Respondent Revilla did not, then and there, question the authenticity of his signature or
the genuineness of the documents, or seek the assistance of the NBI or an independent
handwriting expert in ascertaining the same. In the Revilla Complaint filed on 13
September 2013, however, he alleged:
2.12 Recently, due to news reports that signatures of legislators are being
forged in relation to the release of the PDAF, Plaintiff Revilla engaged the services
of a licensed and reputable handwriting expert, Mr. Rogelio Azores, whose
examination of the PDAF Documents reveal that the signature appearing above
Plaintiff Revilla's name and the name of Atty. Cambe were not written by them.
Thus, the PDAF documents are absolutely fictitious and simulated.
But, as shown in a copy of respondent Revilla' s Letter dated 20 July 2011 in reply
to the 8 July 2011 COA letter, which was submitted by the FIO as part of its evidence, he
confirmed that the signatures appearing in the PDAF documents belonged to him and
respondent Cambe:
After going through these documents and initial examination, it appears that
the signatures and/or initials on these documents are my signatures or that of my
authorized representative. (emphasis, underscoring and italics supplied)
It bears noting that respondent Revilla's 20 July 2011 letter to the COA is not
mentioned in the Revilla Complaint as among those documents purported to be
forgeries. In fine, respondent Revilla only disputed the authenticity of the documents
subject of the 8 July 2011 COA letter in his Counter-Affidavits dated 15 January 2014,
about four (4) months after he filed the civil suit (Revilla Complaint) on 13 September
2013.
After closely examining the Revilla and Cambe Complaints, this Office notes that:
.(a) the cause of action to have the PDAF documents declared null and void is based on
Articles 1346 and 1409 of the Civil Code, which pertain to void, simulated or fictitious
contracts; (b) most of the PDAF documents identified in the Revilla and Cambe
Complaints are NOT contracts; ( c) respondents Revilla and Cambe are assailing the
authenticity of ALL PDAF documents even if the signatures purporting to be theirs do
not appear on each and every page thereof; (d) neither respondent Revilla nor
respondent Cambe was a party to some of the PDAF documents subject of their civil
suits; (e) respondents Revilla and Cambe demanded that De Leon, Pioranto, Pablo, Luy,
Sufi.as, Sula and Balmaceda return to the Government those public funds drawn from
.' tOrder
-C-C-13-0316
MB-C-C-13-0395
\'

,espondent Revilla's PDAF, albeit without clear proof that they are duly authorized to
'a.ke such demands on behalf of the Government; and (f) the Revilla and Cambe
pmplaints read akin to a criminal complaint for Perjury, Falsification or Use of
':alsified Document, rather than a civil suit for annulment, collection of money and
The foregoing peculiar circumstances indubitably show that respondent Revilla
d Cambe's civil suits are mere afterthoughts, ploys to delay the resolution of the
tbject criminal charges filed against them.
14

AT ALL EVENTS, it is premature for respondents Revilla and Cambe to question
e authenticity of documentary evidence at this stage of the proceedings. It is an
matter best raised during trial proper. The criminal complaints are still

'ndergoing preliminary investigation and neither of them has been formally charged
i];xcept in the case of Petronilla
:Balmaceda, the counter-charge for
:Plunder does not lie .
.
Respondent Revilla' s counter-charge for Plunder against respondents Cunanan,
Javellana, Amata, Salacup, Encarnacion, Pablo, De Leon, Piorato,. Asis and Lim does not
!lie.
\l.':1
Respondent Revilla' s counter-charge against his above-named co-respondents for
,;Plunder arose from factual allegations that are similar, if not identical to, the averments
previously made by the FIO and the NBI against these same persons. The Office is now
whether, based on the arguments raised and evidence presented by the
\parties, probable cause for Plunder, Malversation or violation of Section 3 (e) of R. A.
:;No. 3019, or any offense for that matter exists against them.
Necessarily, docketing another counter-charge for Plunder against respondents
. unanan, Javellana, Amata, Salacup, Encarnacion, Pablo, De Leon, Piorato, Asis and
im will only result in the unnecessary duplication of functions, which, in turn, will
unduly burden this Office.
The counter--charge for Plunder against witnesses Luy, Sufias and Sula also
.deserye outright dismissal. This Office was furnished a copy of a Certification dated 23
January 2014 (the Certification) issued by Department of Justice (the DOJ) Secretary
Leila M. De Lima, confirming that these witnesses had been admitted into the DOJ' s
Witness Protection Program (DOJ-WPP) in relation to, among other cases, IC-OC-13-
1920, which was later docketed as OMB-C-C-13-0395, NBI and Baligod v. Revilla, et al.;
.and that in exchange for their testimonies and other evidence provided by them to the
DOJ and the NBI in the PDAF-related cases, witnesses Luy, Sufi.as and Sula are entitled
1
.
4
See Sabandal v. Tongco, C.R. No. 124498, October 5, 2001 and Dreamwork Construction, Inc. v. Janiola
'ancl Famini, C.H. r ..!o. !unf ?0 .. 200').
GJ
,,
benefits provided for under R. A. No. 6981.
15
A copy of the aforementioned
is attached to this Order. Accordingly, this Office gives full faith and credit
/the Certification issued by Secretary De Lima, thus precluding it from docketing the
'unter-charge against these witnesses. Section 12 of R. A. No. 6981 provides:
Effect of Admission of a State Witness into the Program. - The certification of
admission into the Program by the Department shall be given full faith and credit
by the provincial or city prosecutor who is required not to include the Witness in
the criminal complaint or infonnation and if included therein, to petition the court
for his discharge in order that he can utilized as a State Witness. The Court shall
order the discharge and exclusion of the said accused from the information.
Admission into the Program shall entitle such State Witness to immunit11
from criminal prosecution for the offense or offenses in which his testimony will
be given or used and all the rights and benefits provided under Section 8 hereof.
(emphasis, underscoring and italics supplied)
With regard to the counter-charge for Plunder against Balmaceda, as reflected
farly on, this Office refers the same to the FIO for further investigation, considering that
she is not among those charged with Plunder, Malversation or violation of Section 3 (e)
ii.
pfR. A. No. 3019 and is neither covered by any immunity agreement with the DOJ-WPP
r r this Office.
attempts to delay the
reliminary investigation will not
e countenanced.
The Supreme Court, in Belgica, et al. v. Honorable Executive Secretary Ochoa, et al.,
lcantara v. Senate President Drilon, et al. and Nepomuceno v. President Aquino, et al., 1
6
irected this Office, among other offices, being an institution primarily tasked to
nvestigate and prosecute graft-related offenses, to investigate and prosecute PDAF-
elated abuse and/or misuse. The dispositive portion of the Decision reads, in part:
. " I .
x x x
FINALLY, the Court hereby directs all prosecutorial anns of the government
to, within the bounds of reasonable dispatch, investigate and accordingly prosecute
all govemrnent officials and/or private individuals for possible criminal offenses
related to the irregular, improper and/or unlawful disbursement/utilization of all
funds under the Pork Barrel System.
xx x
15
Otherwise known as the "Witness Protection, Security and Benefit Act".
16C. R. No. 208566, 20S:\93 C\mi 709251, November 1.9, WD.
,i
Verily, cases arising from or relating to the so-called PDAF scam, including the
stant criminal complaints against respondents Revilla and Cambe, are imbued with
pamount public interest. This is in view of the personalities involved, the substantial
. s in public funds subject thereof, and the resulting damage to the integrity and
putation of the affected governmental instih1tions and offices.
t
,.,
This Office is thus examining the numerous submissions filed by the parties and
e evidence they presented so as to determine whether, in fact, the offenses charged
ave been probably committed and respondents are probable guilty thereof. The
'ischarge of this delicate task is exacerbated by unfounded attempts to unduly delay
_,:
culmination of this preliminary investigation.
That the PDAF-related cases must be resolved with utmost dispatch was
by the High Court in Ortiz v. Ombudsman Carpio-Morales, et al.,
17
when it
'ssued a Resolution on 3 December 2013, dismissing outright, for lack of merit, the
petition filed by respondent Antonio Y. Ortiz which sought to enjoin this Office's
:conduct of the instant preliminary investigation. Undaunted, respondent Ortiz, in his
Motion dated 9 December 2013, again sought the suspension of the preliminary
,,,
,investigation, which this Office, by Order dated 12 December 2013, denied for lack of
, This Office will not tolerate any further unfounded attempts to suspend or
Sotherwise delay the preliminary investigation of subject criminal cases.
_,._
WHEREFORE, this Office, through the Special Panel of Investigators and for
stated above:
:L
(a) DENIES respondent Ramon M. Revilla, Jr.'s 1\-fotion to Suspend Preliminary
Investigation dated 15 January 2014, and respondent Richard Cambe's prayer
to suspend the preliminary investigation in his Counter-Affidavit dated 20
January 2014;
(b) DISMISSES OUTRIGHT respondent Revilla's counter-charge for Plunder
against: [i] respondents Dennis L. Cunanan, Antonio Y. Ortiz, Alan A.
Javellana, Gondelina G. Amata, Salvador Salacup, Mylene T. Encarnacion,
Nemesio Pablo, Evelyn De Leon, Jocelyn Piorato, John Raymund de Asis and
Ronald John Lim; and [ii] complainants' witnesses Benhur K. Luy, Merlina P.
Sufias and Marina C. Sula; and
( c) REFERS the counter-charge for Plunder against Petronilla Balmaceda to the
Field Investigation Office for further fact-finding.
SO ORDERED.
Quezon City, Philippines, 28 January 2014 .
. 1: C.R.
ointOrder
OMB-C-C-13-0316
'
'.OMB-C-C-13-0395
SPECIAL PANEL OF INVESTIGATORS
Per OFFICE ORDER NO. 349, SERIES OF 2013
---
By:
M.A. CHRISTIAN 0. UY
Graft Investigation and Prosecution Officer IV
Chairperson

c
BUREAU OF
.. 'INVESTIGATION
;f:complainant
,:i-NBI Complex, Taft A venue, Manila

{;
:;LEVITO D. BALIGOD
rcomplainant
{'Villanueva & Baligod, 3rd Floor, The Lydia
39 Polaris St., Bel-air, lv1akati
'FIELD INVESTIGATION OFFICE
: Complainant
.4th Floor, Ombudsman Building, Agham
Road, Quezon City 1100
.BODEGON ESTORNINOS GUERZON
. BORJE & GOZOS
.Counsel for Respondent Ramon M. Revilla, Jr.
5th Floor, Park Trade Center, 1716
.Investment Drive, Madrigal Business
park, Alabang 1780
VJ )
' ...
Republika ng Pilipinas
KAGAWARAN NG KATARUNGAN
Department of Justice
Manila
V.TJTNBSS PROTECTION SECURITY and BENEFIT PROGRAM
January 23, 2014
CERTIFICATE OF ADMISSION
This is to certify that:
Name ofWitnesses
1. BENHUR K. LUY
2. M.ARINA C. SULA
3. SIMONETTE R. BRJONES
4. MARY ARLENE B. BALTAZ..AR
5. MERLINAP. SuNAS
have been granted regular admission to the Program on 01 December
2013, pursuant to the provisions of Sections 1 & 2, Title IV of the
Implementing Rules and Regulations of R.A. 6981 (Witness
Protection Security and Benefits Act) for the following cases filed by
the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) before the Office of the
Ombudsman:
Complainant
1. Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation
2. Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation
3. Atty. Levi to D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation
4. Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation
Ombudsman
Internal Control No.
I C-OC-13-19 2 o
IC-OC-13-1921
IC-OC-13-1922
IC-OC-13-1923
CONFIDENTIAL
7J
similar records relating to Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) projects
which he sponsored (collectively, the PDAF documents) are forgeries, as alleged in his
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.
15.
16.
Ombudsman
Complainant Internal Control No.
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-1924
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-1925
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-1926
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-1927
Atty. Levi to D. Baligod,
Atty. Lourdes P. Benipayo and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-2044
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-2293
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-2294
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-2295
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-2296
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-2297
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-2298
Atty. Levito D. Baligod and
National Bureau of Investigation IC-OC-13-2299

Secretary
Chief Implementor
CONFIDENTIAL
l.ll\..... .l\.....LLLJ..i.Jf .............. ----- -- LJ
Department of Justice
CN : 0201401596
I
similar records relating to Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) projects
which he sponsored (collectively, the PDAF documents) are forgeries, as alleged in his
7 l
r bl" f I Pl 1 A.NNEX " _ _..; .. ;;.;;;;L:;;;o.M__
r ~ e p u IC 0 t le 11 tppmes
OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN
'7 ~ -
J
Ombudsman Bldg., Agham Road, Government Center
North Triangle, Diliman, Quezon City
BEGBOB Law Office
ATIONAt BUREAU OF
INVESTIGATION and LEVlTO
'BALIGOD,
Complainrrnt,
- versus - OMB-C-C-13-0316
"BONG" M. REVILLA, JR., ET
, 1 ~
Respot1de11ts.
Ji.x-------------------------------------------------------------x
FIELD INVESTIGATION OFFICE,
Complai11an t,
- versus -
RAMON "BONG" M. REVILLA, JR., ET
Respo11de11 ts .
OMB-C-C-13-0395
. x------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------x
JOINT ORDER
This resolves the following motions/incidents pending before this Office arising
from the Joint Order dated 28 January 2014 (the Joint Order):
(a) Respondent Senator Ramon M. Revilla, Jr.'s Motion for Reconsideration
dated 3 February 2014 (the Revilla Motion); and
(b) Respondent Richard Cambe's Motion for Reconsideration dated 17 February
2014 (the Cambe Motion).
The Revilla Motion alleges that: (a) service through private courier is "recognized
and considered effective;" (b) the elements of a prejudicial question are present in these
cases; (c) the letters, memoranda of agreement, vouchers, reports, certificates and
similar records relating to Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) projects
which he sponsored (collectively, the PDAF documents) are forgeries, as alleged in his
'laint filed on 13 September 2013 before the Bacom, Cavite RTC
1
which was
eted as Civil Case No. BCV-2013-193, Ramon Revilla, fr. v. Benhur K. Luy, et al. (the
'Ila Complaint); (d) the
1
'falsified" PDAF documents are the only evidence linking
:to the so-called PDAF scam; (d) the filing of the Revilla Complaint preceded the
;,ttition of the instant criminal complaints and is therefore not suspect; and (e) this
to docket his counter-charge for Plunder against his co-
Cunanan, Antonio Y. Ortiz, Alan A. Javellana, Gondelina G.
'ata, Salvador Salacup, Mylene T. Encarnacion, Nemesio Pablo, Evelyn De Leon,
'elyh Piorato, John Raymund de Asis and Ronald John Lim, as well as complainants
tional Bureau of Investigation (the NBI) and Field Investigation Office's (the FIO)
Luy, Merlina P. Sufi.as and Marina C. Sula, and one Petronilla
Similarly, the Cambe Motion argues that: (a) his Complaint-in-Intervention dated
? September 2013 (the Cambe Complaint) was filed before the Bacoor RTC prior to the
: ..BI and FIO's institution of criminal complaints against him; (b) the outcome of the
.. ambe Complaint wilJ "determine llze guilt or innocence" of respondents Revilla and
. ambe; and (b) besides the PDAF documents, there is no other documentary or
testimonial evidence linking him (respondent Cambe) to the alleged PDAF scam.
Ruliug
After a considered review of the records, this Office finds no cogent reason to
reverse or modify its earlier findings. The Joint Order thus stands.
Respondent Revilla's Motio11 and
Counter-Affidavits are procedurally
defective.
Discussion
73
Respondent Revilla insists that his Motion to Suspend Preliminary Investigation
ated 15 January 2014 (the Motion for Suspension) was procedurally compliant. He
ims that the ruling in Philippine National Bank v. Deang Marketing Corporation and
erlita Deang
2
does not apply in this case because, unlike in PNB: (a) his Motion for
uspension was not filed out of time; and (b) his resort to service by private courier was
i ot intended to conceal the true filing date of his submission.
This Office remains unconvinced.
That respondent Revilla' s Motion for Suspension was timely filed, and his resort
service through LBC was in good faith are of no moment. As extensively discussed in
. the Joint Order, the PNB ruling categorically states that service by private courier is not
.a mode recognized by the Rules of Court.
Besides, neither respondent Revilla nor his counsel adduced proof that when
copies of the Motion and Counter-Affidavits were sent out to complainants, PhilPost's
: registered/ordinary mail services were unavailable or suspended in Muntinlupa City,
where respondent Revilla's counsel is based.
It bears noting that copies of the Revilla Motion were sent to complainants
through registered mail, thereby proving that registered mail services have, indeed,
been available in Muntinlupa City.
Benguet Electric Cooperative v. National Labor Relations Commission
3
does not further
respondent Revilla' s cause.
Benguet Electric Cooperative does not al1ow the filing or service of pleadings by
private courier. On the contrary, the ruling in that 1992 case is consistent with the 2008
pronouncement in PNB. As the Revilla Motion concedes:
1.12 ..... In Benguet Electric Cooperative v. NLR.C, the Supreme Court ruled that:
"Respondent Board. members' contention runs counter to the
established rnle that tra11smissiou tltrougli a private carrier or letter-
2 G.R. No. 177931, December 8, 2008.
:i C.V No. 8CJ0'/\1, f\foy I f ~ FYi'?.
ntOrder
. B-C-C-13-0316
B-C-C-13-0395
forwarder - instead of Lhe Philippine Post Office - is uot a recognized
mode of filing pleadillgs ..... " (emplinsis, italics nnd imderscoring supplied)
At all events, this Office has already waived procedural rules and resolved the
otion to Suspend on the merits. As lhe Joint Order states:
While this Office deems respondent Revilla' s resort to service by private
courier as an inexcusable violation of procedural rules to merit outright dismissal 0
his n10tion, it nevertheless decides lo resolve his Motion and counter-charge in the
interest of substantial justice.
4
.There is no prejudicial question iii
.the instant criminal cases.
Respondents Revilla and Cambe maintain that their civil suits give rise to a
. prejudicial question insofar as they are concerned because: (a) the filing of the Revilla
and Cambe Complaints preceded the institution of the instant criminal cases; (b) this
'.t'civil case involves facts intimately related to those upon which the criminal prosecution would
;,be based;" and (c) the PDAF documents, which they claim to be forgeries, are the only
'records linking them to the alleged misuse of respondent Revilla's PDAF.
This Office is not persuaded.
First, that the institution of the Revilla and Cambe Complaints preceded the NBI
and FIO's filing of the criminal complaints against respondents Revilla and Cambe is
hardly controlling.
This Office takes note of the well-publicized fact that the NBI was already
preparing to file a criminal complaint against several public officers in relation to the
. supposed misuse of PDAF funds a few days before respondent Revilla filed his civil suit
with the Bacoor RTC on 13 September 2013.
On 9 September 2013, the Philippine Star published an article entitled "Lawmakers
ace 'Pork Raps!Erap Recalls Having Met Napoles

which reported that:
At least 10 people, including lawmakers and officials bf government-owned
and controlled corporations, will be indicted along with businesswoman Janet Lim
Napoles in connection with the pork barrel scam.
x x x
Earlier, De Lima said tlie NIH was repari11g to file a pl1mda complaiut
against Napoles and severnl law11wkers implicated in the scam. (emplinsis,
underscoring and italics supplied)
x x x
The article identified respondent Revilla as among those legislators supposedly
found by the Commission on Audit to have coursed their PDAF to non-government
':organizations associated with respondent Janet Lim Napoles:
A total of 160 legislators were fowul to /rave fuuueled their PDAF into NG Os
during the period, includ.iug Senators Ra11w11 Revilla Tr., Jinggoy Estrada, Gregorio
Honasan and Senate Minority Leader Juan Ponce Emile. (emphasis, underscoring and
italics supplied)
x x x
Revilla, through his lawyer Joel Bodego1t, said his being dragged into the
issue was a "trial bt/ publicity" as well as ii "derogation of his constitutional right
to due process o(law."
"He is appalled at how the media are giving unwarranted credence to the lies
purveyed by the whistleblowers who have publicly confessed their criminal
enterprise of stealing the lawmakers' PDAFs," Bodegon said.
He said that Revilla is "as much interested to know the truth as anyone else,
that is why he is continuing with his own investigation of all the allegations against
him." (emphasis, underscoring and italics supplied)
x x x
In another article entitled "17 Boxes of Plunder, Malversation Evidence vs Napoles,
.solons submitted to NBI,"
6
Interaksyon.com likewise reported, on 11 September 2013, that
s. Electronically published at /ztt://www.philst11r.co11Llhe11dli11es/2013/09/07/11820411/aw111akers-face-pork-raps
and last accessed on 3 March 2014.
6 Electronically pub! ished at l.!J.l![i.lwww.Jllteraksy_o11.com/ article/70469/17-boxes:Qf phmder-malversation-
{(i,_,jf!iJ ;rn d l<\:;t ,,,, ,., 1>; i :; i\lii 1 , h :w l !.
7J
rd er


it-,
.NBI was in the process of "completing the documentary evidence against Napoles and the
s who will be in the first batch of respondrnls."
On 12 September 2013, Departn1ent of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Leila M. De Lima
before the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee hearing and confirmed that the NBI
yld file criminal charges against those involved in the PDAF scam. According to her,
date of filing was on 16 September 2013, which is a Monday:
7
x x x
Appearing at the third hearing of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee on the
pork barrel scam, De Lima said that the N13I is just being "meticulous" with its
investigation.
"The NBI is not slow. It is simply meticulous and exercises due diligence in
this approach because this is a criminal investigation not a political witch hunt," De
Lima said in her opening stalement before the Senate probe.
She said that the NBI started investigating the pork barrel scam being
allegedly masterminded by Janet Lim-Napoles last April 10.
She noted that the NBI will lodge the appropriate charges, iucluding plunder
cases, against those responsible for the scam before the Ombudsman "when it feels
like the charges will stick."
De Lima said on Wednesday that charges against those involved in the pork
bal"Tel scam, iucludiug Napoles, may be filed on Mo11da11. (emplrnsis, underscoring and
italics supplied)
x x x
The NBI filed its criminal complaint before this Office against respondents Revilla
. nd Cambe on 16 September 2013.
The publicity surrounding the PDAF scam made known to the public that during
.he period 9 to 12 September 2013, the DOJ and the NBI were finalizing the criminal
'omplaints against those persons involved. Corollarily, respondents Revilla and Cambe
...ere, at the time, well aware that respondent Revilla could be among those named in
criminal complaints that the NBI was planning to file on 16 September 2013.
1. Dennis Carcamo, "De Lima: NB! not slow, just metirnlous," electronically published on 12 September 2013
bv. Philstar.com at http:!lww1u.philstar.com/natio1.1/20L3/0911211201981/de-lima-nbi-not-slow-fust-meticulous
i:.' ,/
;:ind hsl2cccs;cd i.:1n 31',;;'i!::; '.'JlJ.
Based on the foregoing, the timing of respondents Revilla and Cambe's filing of
their civil suits on 13 September 2013 and 16 September 2013, respectively, does not
appear to be a mere coincidence. This Office is not thus inclined to agree that a
,prejudicial question exists solely because the filing of the Revilla and Cambe
Complaints preceded the institution on 16 September 2013 of the NBI as well as the FIO
criminal complaints.
Second, as regards respondents Revilla and Cam be' s insistence that their civil
complaints give rise to a prejudicial question, this Office already exhaustively passed
,upon this issue and ruled in the negative. Thus, the Joint Order states:
x x x
Under Rule 111, Section 7 of Lhe Rules of Court, a prejudicial question exists
when the following elements are present:
The elements of a prejudicial question are: (a) the previously instituted
civil action involves an issue similar or intimately related to the issue raised in
the subsequent criminal action and (b) Lhe resolution of such issue determines
whether or not Lhe criminal action may proceed. (u11derscoring supplied)
The aforementioned elements are clearly absent in this instance.
First, it is respondents Revilla and Cambe's view that Lhe main issues in their
civil cases for nullification, collection and damages, i.e. lhe authenticity of the PDAF
documents and the genuineness of Lhe signatures purportedly appearing therein,
are similar to or i11timately related to the issues in subject OMB-C-C-13-0316 and
OMB-C-C-13-0395, which cases seek to delermine the existence of probable cause to
indict them for Plqnder, Malversalion and/or violation of Section 3 (e) of R. A. No.
3019.
It bears stressing that in Lhe present criminnl complaints, respondents Revilla
and Carnbe are l)Ol being charged with Lhe crimes of Falsification of Official
Documents and h ~ use thereof, as defined by Articles 171 and 172 of the Revised
Penal Code. They, along with several others, are charged with Plunder,
Malversation and violation of Section 3 (e) of R. A. No. 3019 in relation to the
supposed misuse or misappropriation of hundreds of millions of Pesos in public
funds allegedly drawn from respondent Revilla's Priority Development Assistance
Fund (PDAF) by way of fictitious or "ghost" projects.
The elements of Plunder, as defined by Section 2 in relation to Section 1 (d) of
R. A. No. 7080, as amended, are, as follows:
1. That the offender is a public officer who acts by himself or in connivance with
members of his family, relatives by affinity or consanguinity, business
associates, subordinates or other persons;
2. Thrit he a1nc1ssecl, accumubled or oC(]llired lll-gotten "ve<dth through a
combination or series of the following overt or criminal acts: (a) through
misappropriation, conversion, misuse, malversation of public funds or raids
on the public treasury; (b) by receiving directly or indirectly, any commission,
gift, share, percentage, kickback or any other form of pecuniary benefits from
any person and/or entity in connection with any government contract or
project by reason of the office or position of the public officer; (c) by the illegal
or fraudulent conveyance or disposition of assets belonging to the National
Government or any of its subdivisions, agencies or instrumentalities of
government owned or controlled corporations or their subsidiaries; (d) by
obtaining, receiving or accepting any shares of stock, equity or any other form
of interest of participation, including the promise of future employment in any
business enterprise or undertaking; (e) by establishing agricultural, industrial
or commercial monopolies or other combinations and/or implementation of
decrees and orders intended to benefit particular persons or special interests;
or (f) by taking advantage of official position, authority, relationship,
connection or influence lo unjustly enrich himself or themselves at the expense
and to the damage and prejudice of lhe Filipino people and the Republic of
the Philippines; and
That the aggregate amount or total value of the ill-golten wealth amassed,
accumulated or acquired is at least PHPS0,000,000.00. (emphasis supplied).
On the other hand, the elements of Malversation are:
The offender is a public officer;
He or she had the custody or coutrol of funds or property by reason of the
duties of his office;
Those funds or property were public funds or property for which he was
accountable; and
He or she appropriated, took, misappropriated or consented, or through
abandonment or negligence, permilled another person to take them.
8
Under Section 3 (e) of R. A No. 3019, a person becomes criminally liable if
'ree (3) requisites are satisfied, viz.:
He or she must be a public officer discharging administrative, judicial or
official functions;
He or she must have acted with 1T1anifest partiality, evident bad faith or
inexcusable negligence; and
His or her action: (a) caused any undue injury to any party, including the
Government; or (b) gave any private party unwarranted benefits, advantage
or preference in the discharge of his or her functions.
9
. Evidently, forgery or falsification, which is the gist of respondents Revilla and
)e's civil suits, is not a 11ecessan1 eleme1tt of the above-mentioned criminal
pses. The issues in these proceedings, and those raised in the Revilla and Cambe
plaints, are neither similar nor intirn.ately related to one another.
:Sandiganbayan, G.R. No. 178626, June 13, 2012.
ex f\
1
\1. / l'.'/P I, 1\ I \:;! :; 1. ':"()\ i.
8
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,.,,
t\Order
-C-C-13-0316
. -C-C-13-0395
testimomr will be give11 or used and all the rights and benefits provided under
Section 8 hereof. (emphasis, 11nderscori11g a11d italics s1Lpplied)
15
This is not the first time that this Office has declined to docket a criminal charge
'ainst a witness admitted into the DOJ-WPP. In its Resolution dated 28 December 2012
,r
(OMB-P-C-12-0051-A, Arturo Bes111111 and E111erlito Angulo v. George Ralmsa, this Office
'l
:smissed the criminal case for Plunder filed against therein respondent Rabusa, who
ad been admitted into the WPP:
In the rnai11, the issue is, assurning arguendo that complainants can make out a
case for plunder or others against respondent, whether respondent can be
prosecuted therefor despite the immunity granted him under the DOJ Witness
Protection Program.
In effect, complainants question respondent's qualification as a state witness
on the ground that he appears lo be the most guilty of plunder. Such stance is
anchored on complainants' conlenlion that respondent, being then the Budget
Officer, orchestrated the conversion of funds in the AFP.
Complaiuants' theory fails ns it i11directly assails the wisdom of respondent's
admission Int the DOT to the Wituess Protecliou Program.
The Supreme Court has long laid lo rest the issue of who determines the
qualification of a state vvitness:
... the prosecution of crimes appertains to the executive department of
government whose principal power and responsibility is to see that our laws
are faithfully executed. A necessary component of this power to execute our
laws is the right to prosecute their violalors. The right to prosecute vests the
prosecutor with a wide range of discretion---the discretion of whether, what
and whom to charge, the exercise of which depends on a smorgasboard of
factors which are best appreciated by prosecutors. We thus hold that it is not
constitutionally impermissible for Congress to enact J<..A. No. 6981 (Witness
Protection Security and Benefit Act) vesting in the Department of Justice the
power to determine who can qualify as a witness in the program and who shall
be granted immunity from prosecution.
The DOJ having granted respondent immunity from prosecution for plunder
(under its Witness Protection Security and Benefit Act Program) in its course of its
investigation of respondent's complaint for Plunder against former and present AFP
officers arising from the same subject of lhe present cornplaint - conversion of AFP
funds-, he is insulated from prosecution lherefor.
16
(emphasis, U!lderscoring and italics
supplied)
..MB-C-C-13-0395
age 13 of 14
Second, respondent Revilla's reliance on Section 17 of R. A. No. 6770
17
does not
The pertinent portion of the provision reads:
Under such terms and conditions as it may determine, taking into account the
pertinent provisions of lhe Rules of Court, Lhe Ombudsman n-iay grant imnmnity
from criminal prosecution to any person whose testimony or whose possession and
production of documents or other evidence may be necessary to determine the truth
in any hearing, inquiry or proceeding being conducted by the Ombudsman or
under its authority, in Lhe performance or in the furtherance of its constitutional
functions and statutory objectives. The immLmity granted under this and the
immediately preceding paragraph shall not exempt the witness from criminal
prosecution for perjury or false testimony nor shall he be exempt from demotion or
removal from office.
Nothing in the above section abrogates, limits or irn.pinges on the DO} Secretary's
to admit witnesses into the DOJ-WPP. Moreover, there appears to be no conflict
;?;
.(between R. A. No. 6981 and Section 17 of R A. No. 6770. The logical conclusion,
therefore, is that a person may obtain immunity from prosecution under either statute.
Consequently, a grant of immunity under R. A. No. 6981 by the DOJ must be respected
, by this Office. In the same way, the DOJ is duty-bound to give credence to a grant of
.. immunity by this Office under Section 17 of R. A. No. 6770.
In this case, witnesses Luy, Sula and Sufi.as were granted immunity under R. A.
No. 6981. The DOJ Secretary's decision to admit them into the DOJ-WPP remains valid
until declared otherwise in the proper proceeding or forum.
WHEREFORE, this Office, through lhe Special Panel of Investigators and for
reasons stated above DENIES respondent Ramon M. Revilla, Jr.'s Motion for
Reconsideration dated 3 February 2014, and respondent Richard Cambe' s Motion for
Reconsideration dated 17 February 2014 for lack of merit.
SO ORDERED.
Quezon City, Philippines, 3 March 2014.
8
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. iB-C-C-13-0316
:/[
.... 6-C-C-13-0395
SPECIAL PANEL OF INVESTIGATORS
Per OFFICE ORDER NO. 349, SERIES OP 2013
By: C00
M.A. CHRISTIAN 0. UY
Graft Investigation and Prosecution Officer IV
Chairperson
APPROVED/DISAPPRDVED

Ombudsman
BUREAU OF
'INVESTIGATION
,;(;omplainant
NBI Complex, Taft Avenue, Manila
. LEVITO D. BALIGOD
Complainant
Villanueva & Baligod, 3rc1 Floor, The Lydia
Bldg., 39 Polaris St., Bel-air, Makati
FIELD INVESTIGATION OFFICE
Complainant
4111 Floor, Ombudsman Building, Agharn
Road, Quezon City 1100
BODEGON ESTORNINOS GUERZON
BORJE & GOZOS
Co.unsel for Respondellt R1.1111011 M. Revilla, Jr.
5t1i Floor, Park Trade Center, 1716
Investment Drive, Madrigal Business
Park, Alabang 1780
AN CHET A AND ASSOCIATES
Counsel for Respondent Richard Cam be
Suite 6K Vernida I Building, 120 Arnorsolo
St., Legazpi Village, Makati City
.,
. i
8 ;_;