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PRESIDENTIAL DECREE No.

532 ANTI-PIRACY AND ANTI-HIGHWAY ROBBERY LAW OF 1974 Definition of Terms Philippine Waters It shall refer to all bodies of water, such as but not limited to, seas, gulfs, bays around, between and connecting each of the Islands of the Philippine Archipelago, irrespective of its depth, breadth, length or dimension, and all other waters belonging to the Philippines by historic or legal title, including territorial sea, the sea-bed, the insular shelves, and other submarine areas over which the Philippines has sovereignty or jurisdiction. Vessel Any vessel or watercraft used for transport of passengers and cargo from one place to another through Philippine Waters. It shall include all kinds and types of vessels or boats used in fishing. Philippine Highway It shall refer to any road, street, passage, highway and bridges or other parts thereof, or railway or railroad within the Philippines used by persons, or vehicles, or locomotives or trains for the movement or circulation of persons or transportation of goods, articles, or property or both. Piracy Any attack upon or seizure of any vessel, or the taking away of the whole or part thereof or its cargo, equipment, or the personal belongings of its complement or passengers, irrespective of the value thereof, by means of violence against or intimidation of persons or force upon things, committed by any person, including a passenger or member of the complement of said vessel, in Philippine waters, shall be considered as piracy. The offenders shall be considered as pirates and punished as hereinafter provided. Highway Robbery/Brigandage The seizure of any person for ransom, extortion or other unlawful purposes, or the taking away of the property of another by means of violence against or intimidation of person or force upon things of other unlawful means, committed by any person on any Philippine Highway. Acts punished as piracy 1. Attacking or seizing a vessel on the high seas or in Philippine waters; 2. Seizing in the vessel while on the high seas or in Philippine waters the whole or part of its cargo, its equipment or personal belongings of its complement or passengers. Elements of piracy 1. The vessel is on the high seas or Philippine waters; 2. Offenders may or may not be members of its complement, or passengers of the vessel; 3. Offenders either: a. Attack or seize a vessel on the high seas or in Philippine waters; or

b. Seize in the vessel while on the high seas or in Philippine waters the whole or part of its cargo, its equipment or personal belongings of its complement or passengers; 4. The preceding were committed under any of the following circumstances: a. Whenever they have seized a vessel by boarding or firing upon the same; b. Whenever the pirates have abandoned their victims without means of saving themselves; or c. Whenever the crime is accompanied by murder, homicide, physical injuries or rape. 5. There is intent to gain. Originally, the crimes of piracy and mutiny can only be committed in the high seas, that is, outside Philippine territorial waters. But in August 1974, Presidential Decree No. 532 (The Anti-Piracy and Anti-Highway Robbery Law of 1974) was issued, punishing piracy, but not mutiny, in Philippine territorial waters. Thus came about two kinds of piracy: (1) that which is punished under the Revised Penal Code if committed in the high seas; and (2) that which is punished under Presidential Decree No. 532 if committed in Philippine territorial waters. Amending Article 122, Republic Act No. 7659 included therein piracy in Philippine waters, thus, pro tanto superseding Presidential Decree No. 532. As amended, the article now punishes piracy, as well as mutiny, whether committed in the high seas or in Philippine territorial waters, and the penalty has been increased to reclusion perpetua from reclusion temporal. But while under Presidential Decree No. 532, piracy in Philippine waters could be committed by any person, including a passenger or member of the complement of a vessel, under the amended article, piracy can only be committed by a person who is not a passenger nor member of the complement of the vessel irrespective of venue. So if a passenger or complement of the vessel commits acts of robbery in the high seas, the crime is robbery, not piracy. Note, however, that in Section 4 of Presidential Decree No. 532, the act of aiding pirates or abetting piracy is penalized as a crime distinct from piracy. Said section penalizes any person who knowingly and in any manner aids or protects pirates, such as giving them information about the movement of the police or other peace officers of the government, or acquires or receives property taken by such pirates, or in any manner derives any benefit therefrom; or who directly or indirectly abets the commission of piracy. Also, it is expressly provided in the same section that the offender shall be considered as an accomplice of the principal offenders and punished in accordance with the Revised Penal Code. This provision of Presidential Decree No. 532 with respect to piracy in Philippine water has not been incorporated in the Revised Penal Code. Neither may it be considered repealed by Republic Act No. 7659 since there is nothing in the amendatory law is inconsistent with said section. Apparently, there is still the crime of abetting piracy in Philippine waters under Presidential Decree No. 532. Considering that the essence of piracy is one of robbery, any taking in a vessel with force upon things or with violence or intimidation against person is employed will always be piracy. It cannot co-exist with the crime of robbery. Robbery, therefore, cannot be

committed on board a vessel. But if the taking is without violence or intimidation on persons of force upon things, the crime of piracy cannot be committed, but only theft. If any of the circumstances in Article 123 is present, piracy is qualified. Take note of the specific crimes involve in number 4 c (murder, homicide, physical injuries or rape). When any of these crimes accompany piracy, there is no complex crime. Instead, there is only one crime committed qualified piracy. Murder, rape, homicide, physical injuries are mere circumstances qualifying piracy and cannot be punished as separate crimes, nor can they be complexed with piracy. Although in Article 123 merely refers to qualified piracy, there is also the crime of qualified mutiny. Mutiny is qualified under the following circumstances: (1) When the offenders abandoned the victims without means of saving themselves; or (2) When the mutiny is accompanied by rape, murder, homicide, or physical injuries. Note that the first circumstance which qualifies piracy does not apply to mutiny. Elements of mutiny 1. The vessel is on the high seas or Philippine waters; 2. Offenders are either members of its complement, or passengers of the vessel; 3. Offenders either: a. attack or seize the vessel; or b. seize the whole or part of the cargo, its equipment, or personal belongings of the crew or passengers. Mutiny is the unlawful resistance to a superior officer, or the raising of commotions and disturbances aboard a ship against the authority of its commander. Distinction between mutiny and piracy 1. As to offenders Mutiny is committed by members of the complement or the passengers of the vessel. Piracy is committed by persons who are not members of the complement or the passengers of the vessel. 2. As to criminal intent In mutiny, there is no criminal intent. In piracy, the criminal intent is for gain. Elements of highway robbery or brigandage 1. The seizure of any person for ransom, extortion or other unlawful purposes, or the taking away of the property of another; 2. By means of violence against or intimidation of person or force upon things of other unlawful means; 3. Committed by any person on any Philippine Highway; 4. Committed indiscriminately. Note, however, that in Section 4 of Presidential Decree No. 532, the act of aiding pirates or abetting piracy is penalized as a crime distinct from piracy. Said section penalizes any person who knowingly and in any manner aids or protects pirates, such as giving them information about the movement of the police or other peace officers of the government, or acquires or receives property taken by such pirates, or in any manner derives any benefit therefrom; or who directly or indirectly abets the commission of piracy. Also, it is expressly provided in the same section that the offender shall be

considered as an accomplice of the principal offenders and punished in accordance with the Revised Penal Code. This provision of Presidential Decree No. 532 with respect to piracy in Philippine water has not been incorporated in the Revised Penal Code. Neither may it be considered repealed by Republic Act No. 7659 since there is nothing in the amendatory law is inconsistent with said section. Apparently, there is still the crime of abetting piracy in Philippine waters under Presidential Decree No. 532.

BAR QUESTIONS Question No. 1 Nagoya Maru was negotiating the sea route from Hongkong towards Manila, and while still 300 miles from Aparri, Cagayan, its engines malfunctioned. The Captain ordered the ship to stop for emergency repairs lasting for almost 15 hours. Due to exhaustion, the officers and crew fell asleep. While the ship was anchored, a motorboat manned by renegade Ybanags from Claveria, Cagayan, passed by and took advantage of the situation. They cut the ship's engines and took away several heavy crates of electrical equipment and loaded them in their motorboat. Then they left hurriedly towards Aparri. At daybreak, the crew found that a robbery took place. They radioed the Aparri Port Authorities resulting in the apprehension of the culprits. What crime was committed? Explain. SUGGESTED ANSWER: Piracy in the high seas was committed by the renegade Ybanags. The culprits, who are neither members of the complement nor passengers of the ship, seized part of the equipment of the vessel while it was three hundred miles away from Aparri, Cagayan (Art. 122, Revised Penal Code). Question No. 2 Supposing that while the robbery was taking place, the culprits stabbed a member of the crew while sleeping. What crime was committed? Explain. SUGGESTED ANSWER: The crime committed is qualified piracy, because it was accompanied by physical injuries/homicide. The culprits stabbed a member of the crew while sleeping (Art. 123, Revised Penal Code). Question No. 3 A, B, C, D and B were in a beerhouse along MacArthur Highway having a drinking spree. At about 1 o'clock in the morning, they decided to leave and so asked for the bill. They pooled their money together but they were still short of P2,000.00. E then orchestrated a plan whereby A, B, C and D would go out, flag a taxicab and rob the taxi driver of all his money while E would wait for them in the beerhouse. A. B, C and D agreed. All armed with balisongs, A, B, C and D hailed the first taxicab they encountered. After robbing X, the driver, of his earnings, which amounted to P1,000.00 only, they needed P1 ,000.00 more to meet their bill. So, they decided to hail another taxicab and they again robbed driver T of his hard-earned money amounting to P1,000. On their way back to the beerhouse, they were apprehended by a police team upon the complaint of X, the driver of the first cab. They pointed to E as the mastermind. What crime or crimes, if any, did A, B, C, D and B commit? Explain fully. SUGGESTED ANSWER: A. B, C, D and E are liable for two (2) counts of robbery under Article 294 of the Rev. Penal Code; not for highway Robbery under PD 532. The offenders are not brigands but only committed the robbery to raise money to pay their bill because it happened that

they were short of money to pay the same. Question No. 4 Distinguish Highway Robbery under Presidential Decree No. 532 from Robbery committed on a highway. SUGGESTED ANSWER: Highway Robbery under Pres. Decree 532 differs from ordinary Robbery committed on a highway in these respects: 1. In Highway Robbery under PD 532, the robbery is committed indiscriminately against persons who commute in such highways, regardless of the potentiality they offer; while in ordinary Robbery committed on a highway, the robbery is committed only against predetermined victims; 2. It is Highway Robbery under PD 532, when the offender is a brigand or one who roams in public highways and carries out his robbery in public highways as venue, whenever the opportunity to do so arises. It is ordinary Robbery under the Revised Penal Code when the commission thereof in a public highway is only incidental and the offender is not a brigand; and 3. In Highway Robbery under PD 532, there is frequency in the commission of the robbery in public highways and against persons travelling thereat; whereas ordinary Robbery in public highways is only occasional against a predetermined victim, without frequency in public highways. Question No. 5 Police Sgt. Diego Chan, being a member of the Theft and Robbery Division of the Western Police District and assigned to the South Harbor, Manila, was privy to and more or less familiar with the schedules, routes and hours of the movements of container vans, as well as the mobile police patrols, from the pier area to the different export processing zones outside Metro Manila. From time to time, he gave valuable and detailed information on these matters to a group interested in those shipments in said container vans. On several instances, using the said information as their basis, the gang hijacked and pilfered the contents of the vans. Prior to their sale to "fences" in Banawe, Quezon City and Bangkal, Makati City, the gang Informs Sgt, Chan who then inspects the pilfered goods, makes his choice of the valuable items and disposes of them through his own sources or "fences". When the hijackers were traced on one occasion and arrested, upon custodial investigation, they implicated Sgt. Chan and the fiscal charged them all, including Sgt. Chan as co-principals. Sgt. Chan, in his defence, claimed that he should not be charged as a principal but only as an accessory after the fact under P.D. 532, otherwise known as the Anti-Piracy and Anti-Highway Robbery Act of 1972. Is the contention of Sgt. Chan valid and tenable? Explain. SUGGESTED ANSWER: No, the contention of Sgt. Chan is not valid or tenable because by express provision of P.D. 532, Section 4, a person who knowingly and in any manner, aids or protects highway robbers/brigands, such as giving them information about the movement of police officers or acquires or receives property taken by brigands, or who directly or indirectly abets the commission of highway robbery/brigandage, shall be considered as accomplice of the principal offenders and punished in accordance with the rules in the Revised Penal Code.

/gpmp