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COMPOUND COMPLEX CRIMES


PEOPLE VS GAFFUD
Complex Crimes; Kinds; Words and Phrases; In a complex crime, although two or more crimes are actually committed,
they constitute only one crime in theeyes of the law as well as in the conscience of the offender. In a complex crime,
although two or more crimes are actually committed, they constitute only one crime in the eyes of the law as well as in
the conscience of the offender. Hence, there is only one penalty imposed for the commission of a complex crime. There
are two kinds of complex crime. The first is known as compound crime, or when a single act constitutes two or more grave
or less grave felonies. The second is known as complex crime proper, or when an offense is a necessary means for
committing the other. The classic example of the first of kind is when a single bullet results in the death of two or more
persons. A different rule governs where separate and distinct acts result in a number killed. Deeply rooted is the doctrine
that when various victims expire from separate shots, such acts constitute separate and distinct crimes.
Same; Same; Same; The single act of accused-appellantburning a house with the main objective of killing the occupants
resulting in their deathsresulted in the complex crime of double murder. We hold that the single act of accusedappellantburning the house of Manuel Salvador, with the main objective of killing the latter and his daughter, Analyn
Salvador, resulting in their deathsresulted in the complex crime of double murder. Under Article 248 of the RPC, murder
is committed by means of fire. Since the maximum penalty imposed for murder was death, when the case was pending in
the CA, the CA correctly imposed the penalty of death for the complex crime of double murder instead of the two death
penalties imposed by the RTC for two counts of murder. In view, however, of the passage of Republic Act No. 9346
(otherwise known as An Act Prohibiting the Imposition of Death Penalty in the Philippines), we reduce the penalty of
death to reclusion perpetua with no eligibility for parole.
Same; Same; Aggravating Circumstances; Nighttime; By and of itself, nighttime is not an aggravating circumstanceit
becomes aggravating only when: (1) it is especially sought by the offender; or (2) it is taken advantage of by him; or (3)
it facilitates the commission of the crime by ensuring the offenders immunity from capture. By and of itself, nighttime
is not an aggravating circumstance. It becomes aggravating only when: (1) it is especially sought by the offender; or (2) it
is taken advantage of by him; or (3) it facilitates the commission of the crime by ensuring the offenders immunity from
capture. In this case, the RTC correctly appreciated nighttime as aggravating considering that nighttime was especially
sought by accused-appellant to carry out his evil plan. Evidence shows that accused-appellant waited for nighttime to
consummate his plan. It should be noted that accused-appellant was seen lurking near the house of the victims earlier in
the evening. The fact that he brought with him a flashlight clearly shows that he intended to commit the crime in
darkness.

FACTS:

O
r
d
i

Accused-appellant Bernardino Gaffud, Jr. was found guilty of two (2) counts of murder for killing Manuel Salvador and
Analyn Salvador by means of fire. Evidence for the prosecution presented the following:
1) That on the night of May 10, 1994, Orly Salvador, while on his way to the house of his uncle Manuel Salvador, heard two
gunshots and thereafter saw the house of his uncle burning. He saw three persons within the vicinity of the burning house,
one of whom he identified as appellant Gaffud, Jr.
2) That Dan Dangpal, neighbor of the deceased, at about 8:00 PM that evening, heard successive gunshots and saw the
deceaseds house burning.
3) That prior the incident, Barangay Captain Potado Ballang saw the appellant a few meters away from the house of the
deceased.
4) That earlier that day, Dominga Salvador, common-law wife of Manuel Salvador and mother of Analyn Salvador, went to
the house of the appellant to inquire about her husbands share in the construction of the barangay hall. Dominga also
related that had earlier filed a complaint against the appellant and his brother for slaughtering her pig.
In his appeal, the appellant argued that the court failed to rule and resolve whether or not conspiracy existed, despite the
fact that there was no proof as to what overt acts he committed which would constitute the crime of murder.
ISSUE:
1) Whether or not there was conspiracy.
2) Whether or not accused-appellant should be held liable for two (2) separate counts of murder or for the complex crime

of double murder.
HELD:
1) Conspiracy, in this case, is not essential. The rule is that in the absence of evidence showing the direct participation of
the accused in the commission of the crime, conspiracy must be established by clear and convincing evidence in order to
convict the accused. In the case at bar, however, direct participation of accused-appellant in the killing of the victims was
established beyond doubt by the evidence of the prosecution. Thus, a finding of conspiracy is no longer essential for the
conviction of accused-appellant.
2) No. The Court ruled that in a complex crime, although two or more crimes are actually committed, they constitute only
one crime in the eyes of the law as well as in the conscience of the offender. The burning the house of Manuel Salvador,
with the main objective of killing the latter and his daughter, resulting in their deaths resulted in the complex crime of
double murder. Hence, there is only one penalty imposed for the commission of a complex crime.
COMPOUND COMPLEX CRIMES
PPL VS GUILLEN
COMPLEX CRIME OF MURDER AND MULTIPLE ATTEMPTED MURDER; OFFENDED PARTIES OTHER THAN INTENDED VICTIM; ACT
WITH INTENTION TO KILL; CRIMINAL LIABILITY.In throwing a hand grenade at the President with the intention of killing
him, the appellant acted with malice. He is therefore liable for all the consequences of his wrongful act; for in
accordance with article 4 of the Revised Penal Code, criminal liability is incurred by any person committing a felony
(delito) although the wrongful act done be different from that which he intended to do.
.ID.; ID.; AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCES NEED NOT BE CONSIDERED.In meeting out the penalty for the complex crime of
murder and multiple attempted murder, aggravating circumstances need not be considered in view of article 48 of the
Revised Penal Code, which provides that the prescribed penalty shall be imposed in its maximum period.
In the brief submitted by counsel de oficio for this appellant, several errors are assigned allegedly committed by the trial
court, namely: first, "in finding the appellant guilty of murder for the death of Simeon Varela"; second, "in declaring the
appellant guilty of the complex crime of murder and multiple frustrated murder"; third, "in applying sub-section 1 of
article 49 of the Revised Penal Code in determining the penalty to be imposed upon the accused"; and fourth, "in
considering the concurrence of the aggravating circumstances of nocturnity and of contempt of public authorities in the
commission of the crime."
The evidence for the prosecution, supported by the brazen statements made by the accused, shows beyond any shadow of
doubt that, when Guillen attended that meeting, carrying with him two hand grenades, to put into execution his
preconceived plan to assassinate President Roxas, he knew fully well that, by throwing one of those two hand grenades in
his possession at President Roxas, and causing it to explode, he could not prevent the persons who were around his main
and intended victim from being killed or at least injured, due to the highly explosive nature of the bomb employed by him
to carry out his evil purpose. Guillen, testifying in his own behalf, in answer to questions propounded by the trial judge
(page 96 of transcript) supports our conclusion. He stated that he performed the act voluntarily; that his purpose was to
kill the President, but that it did not make any difference to him if there were some people around the President when he
hurled that bomb, because the killing of those who surrounded the President was tantamount to killing the President, in
view of the fact that those persons, being loyal to the President, were identified with the latter. In other words, although
it was not his main intention to kill the persons surrounding the President, he felt no compunction in killing them also in
order to attain his main purpose of killing the President.
The facts do not support the contention of counsel for appellant that the latter is guilty only of homicide through reckless
imprudence in regard to the death of Simeon Varela and of less serious physical injuries in regard to Alfredo Eva, Jose
Fabio, Pedro Carrillo and Emilio Maglalang, and that he should be sentenced to the corresponding penalties for the
different felonies committed, the sum total of which shall not exceed three times the penalty to be imposed for the most
serious crime in accordance with article 70 in relation to article 74 of the Revised Penal Code.
In throwing hand grenade at the President with the intention of killing him, the appellant acted with malice. He is
therefore liable for all the consequences of his wrongful act; for in accordance with article 4 of the Revised Penal Code,
criminal liability is incurred by any person committing a felony (delito) although the wrongful act done be different from
that which. he intended. In criminal negligence, the injury caused to another should be unintentional, it being simply the

incident of another act performed without malice. (People vs. Sara, 55 Phil., 939.) In the words of Viada, "in order that an
act may be qualified as imprudence it is necessary that neither malice nor intention to cause injury should intervene;
where such intention exists, the act should be qualified by the felony it has produced even though it may not have been
the intention of the actor to cause an evil of such gravity as that produced." (Viada's Comments on the Penal Code, vol. 7,
5th ed., p. 7.) And, as was held by this court, a deliberate intent to do an unlawful act is essentially inconsistent with the
idea of reckless imprudence. (Peoplevs. Nanquil, 43 Phil., 232.) Where such unlawful act is wilfully done, a mistake in the
identity of the intended victim cannot be considered as reckless imprudence. (Peoplevs. Gona, 54 Phil., 605.)
The case of People vs. Mabug-at, 51 Phil., 967, cited by counsel for appellant does not support his contention. In that case
the defendant, with intent to kill his sweetheart, fired a shot from his revolver which hit not the intended victim but the
latter's niece, who was seriously wounded. The defendant in that case contended that he was guilty only of unlawful
discharge of firearms with injuries, but this court held that the act having been committed with intent to kill and with
treachery, defendant was guilty of frustrated murder. Squarely on the point raised by counsel is the following decision of
the Supreme Court of Spain:
"Cuestin 62. Se presenta A, a las ocho de la noche, en el estanco de B a comprar tabaco, y habindose negado ste a
drselo al fiado, se retira aqul sin mediar entre ambos disputa alguna; pero, transcurrido un cuarto de hora, hallndose
el estanquero despachando a C, se oye la detonacin de un arma de fuego disparada por A desde la calle, quedando
muertos en el acto C y el estanquero: supuesta la no intencin en A de matar a C, y s slo al estanquero, cabe calificar la
muerte de este de homicidio y la de C de imprudencia temeraria?La Sala de lo criminal de la Audiencia de Granada lo
estim as, y conden al procesado a catorce aos de reclusin por el homicidio y a un ao de prisin correccional por la
imprudencia. Aparte de que la muerte del estanquero debi calificarse de asesinato y no de homicidio, por haberse
ejecutado con alevosa, es evidente que la muerte de C, suponiendo que no se propusiera ejecutarla el procesado, no
pudo calificarse de imprudencia teme raria, sino que tambin debi declarrsele responsable de la misma, a tenor de lo
dispuesto en este apartado ltimo del artculo; y que siendo ambas muertes producidas por un solo hecho, o sea por un
solo disparo, debi imponerse al reo la pena del delito de asesinato en el grado mximo, a tenor de lo dispuesto en el art.
90 del Cdigo, o sea la pena de muerte. Se ve, pues, claramente que en la antedicha sentencia, aparte de otros artculos
del Cdigo, se infringi por la Sala la disposicin de este apartado ltimo del artculo muy principalmente, y as lo declar
el Tribunal Supremo en S. de 18 de junio de 1872. (Gaceta de 1. de agosto.)" (I Viada, 5th Ed., p. 42.)
Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code provides as follows:
"ART. 48. Penalty for Complex Crimes.When a single act constitutes two or more grave or less grave felonies, or when an
offense is a necessary means for committing the other, the penalty for the most serious crime shall be imposed, the same
to be applied in its maximum period."
We think it is the above-quoted article and not paragraph 1 of article 49 that is applicable. The case before us is clearly
governed by the first clause of article 48 because by a single act, that of throwing a highly explosive hand grenade at
President Roxas, the accused committed two grave felonies, namely: (1) murder, of which Simeon Varela was the victim;
and (2) multiple attempted murder, of which President Roxas, Alfredo Eva, Jose Fabio, Pedro Carrillo and Emilio Maglalang
were the injured parties.
The killing of Simeon Varela was attended by the qualifying circumstance of treachery. In the case of Peoplevs. Mabugat, supra, this court held that the qualifying circumstance of treachery may be properly considered, even when the victim
of the attack was not the one whom the defendant intended to kill, if it appears from the evidence that neither of the
two persons could in any manner put up defense against the attack, or become aware of it. In the same case it was held
that the qualifying circumstance of premeditation may not be properly taken into account when the person whom the
defendant proposed to kill was different from the one who became his victim.
There can be no question that the accused attempted to kill President Roxas by throwing a hand grenade at him with the
intention to kill him, thereby commencing the commission of a felony by overt acts, but he did not succeed in
assassinating him "by reason of some cause or accident other than his own spontaneous desistance." For the same reason
we qualify the injuries caused on the four other persons already named as merely attempted and not frustrated murder.
In this connection, it should be stated that, although there is abundant proof that, in violation of the provisions of article

148 of the Revised Penal Code, the accused Guillen has committed among others the offense of assault upon a person in
authority, for in fact his efforts were directed towards the execution of his main purpose of eliminating President Roxas
for his failure to redeem his electoral campaign promises, by throwing at him in his official capacity as the Chief Executive
of the nation the hand grenade in question, yet, in view of the failure of the prosecution to insert in the information the
appropriate allegation charging Guillen with the commission of said offense, we shall refrain from making a finding to that
effect..
The complex crimes of murder and multiple attempted murder committed by the accused with the single act of throwing
a hand grenade at the President, was attended by the various aggravating circumstances/alleged in the information,
without any mitigating circumstance. But we do not deem it necessary to consider said aggravating circumstances because
in any event article 48 of the Revised Penal Code above-quoted requires that the penalty for the most serious of said
crimes be applied in its maximum period. The penalty for murder is reclusin temporal in its maximum period to death.
(Art. 248.)
It is our painful duty to apply the law and mete out to the accused the extreme penalty provided by it upon the facts and
circumstances hereinabove narrated.
The sentence of the trial court being correct, we have no alternative but to affirm it, and we hereby do so by a unanimous
vote. The death sentence shall be executed in accordance with article 81 of the Revised Penal Code, under authority of
the Director of Prisons, on such working day as the trial court may fix within 30 days from the date the record shall have
been remanded. It is so ordered.
COMPOUND COMPLEX CRIMES
PPL VS MILFLORES
Same; Wrong filing of two separate informations where only onefor a complex offenseshould have been filed does not
cause substantial prejudice to accused.There is, to Our mind, some degree of plausibility in such posture of the People.
Indeed, it is obvious that the technical error of the fiscal in filing two separate informations did not cause appellant any
substantial prejudice at all. In effect, as the proceedings were actually conducted, it is as if appellant had been
prosecuted and tried under a single information. It would be giving premium to technicality and sacrificing substantial
justice to yield to counsels contention. Besides, to do so would result in duplicating what had already been done, the
fulldressed trial of the case, with both prosecution and defense presenting all their respective evidence.
Same; Mere filing of two informations does not of itself give rise to double jeopardy.But the more untenable aspect of
the position of appellant is that when he invoked the defense of double jeopardy, what could have been the first jeopardy
had not yet been completed or even began. It is settled jurisprudence in this Court that the mere filing of two
informations or complaints charging the same offense does not yet afford the accused in those cases the occasion to
complain that he is being placed in jeopardy twice for the same offense, for the simple reason that the primary basis of
the defense of double jeopardy is that the accused has already been convicted or acquitted in the first case or that the
same has been terminated without his consent.
Criminal Law; Penalty on murder convict more than 70 years old cannot be death.In view of all the foregoing, the
appellant Nao Milflores y Laksa is hereby found guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the complex offense of murder with
frustrated murder with the aggravating circumstances of evident premeditation, craft and dwelling and he is hereby
sentenced to death. It appearing from the records, however, that he is presently more than 70 years old, pursuant to
Article 47 of the Revised Penal Code, We have no alternative but to affirm the penalty of reclusion perpetuaimposed by
the trial court, with all the concomitant accessories thereof. Costs against appellant.
Facts: Early in the morning of 27 November 1967, at about 7:45 a.m., an old man approached the house on 2233 Garrido
Street, Sta. Ana, Manila, calling out the name of one of the occupants Mrs. Javier. Heeding such call, Florencia Tactay
Javier came out of the door and met the caller. The old man handed to her a paper bag containing some vegetables
pechay, upo and sigarillas and then left the place. Mrs. Florencia Javier brought the bag into the house and proceeded
to empty the same of its contents. As she did so, however, something inside the paper bag began emitting smoke and

whistling sound, followed moments later by a deafening bomb explosion which caused death of one, and multiple injuries
and wounds to 7 other occupants of the house. Investigations thereafter conducted by various police agencies led to the
arrest of Nao Milflores y Laksa. On 6 December 1967, he was charged with multiple frustrated murder (Criminal Case
88173) before the Court of First Instance of Manila. In a separate information filed with the same court on even date, he
was likewise charged for murder (Criminal Case 88174). Milflores was arraigned on said two informations on 14 December
1967 and 23 January 1968, respectively, and entered pleas of "Not Guilty" to the charges. Later, he moved to quash the
information for murder but the same was denied by the trial court. Thereafter, the two cases were tried jointly, at the
conclusion of which the the Court of First Instance of Manila (Branch XI) rendered the decision of conviction and and
sentenced Milflores to imprisonment of 4 Years, 2 Months of prision correccional, as minimum, to 8 Years of prision mayor,
as maximum, with the accessory penalties of the law for the crime of multiple attempted murder; and to reclusion
perpetua and to pay the heirs of the victim in the sum of P12,000.00 without subsidiary imprisonment in case of
insolvency, for the crime of murder. Milflores appealed. Issue: Whether the filing of Criminal Case 88174 placed Milflores
under risk of double jeopardy. Constitutional Law II, 2005 ( 21 ) Narratives (Berne Guerrero) Held: The first information for
frustrated murder, Criminal Case 88173, does not include among the victims or offended parties Felicidad Mique, the
woman who died and is precisely named as the deceased in the murder case, Criminal Case 88174. In the sense, therefore,
that Milflores was ever in jeopardy in that first case, it is plain to see that such was impossible or could not have
happened. Counsel is thus off tangent in invoking double jeopardy. To be accurate, the legal error of the prosecution here
consists of having filed two separate informations for a single offense. For there can be no doubt about the fact that since
the injuries suffered by the offended parties in Criminal Case 88173 resulted from the same act allegedly of the accused
that caused the death of Felicidad Mique, the victim in Criminal Case 88174, namely, the explosion of the bomb which
according to the prosecution was handed by Milflores to Florencia Tactay-Javier, the crime for which Milflores could be
made to answer is the virtually single complex offense of murder with frustrated murder pursuant to Article 48 of the
Revised Penal Code. There is in law only one offense because there is only one penalty that can be imposed
notwithstanding that the act may in fact involve a cluster of otherwise separate or distinct offenses. Still, the technical
error of the fiscal in filing two separate informations did not cause Milflores any substantial prejudice at all. In effect, as
the proceedings were actually conducted, it is as if Milflores had been prosecuted and tried under a single information. It
would be giving premium to technicality and sacrificing substantial justice to yield to counsel's contention. Besides, to do
so would result in duplicating what had already been done, the full-dressed trial of the case, with both prosecution and
defense presenting all their respective evidence. But the more untenable aspect of the position of Milflores is that when
he invoked the defense of double jeopardy, what could have been the first jeopardy had not yet been completed or even
began. It is settled jurisprudence in the Court that the mere filing of two informations or complaints charging the same
offense does not yet afford the accused in those cases the occasion to complain that he is being placed in jeopardy twice
for the same offense, for the simple reason that the primary basis of the defense of double jeopardy is that the accused
has aalready been convicted or acquitted in the first case or that the same has been terminated without his consent.
COMPOUND COMPLEX CRIMES
PPL vs MORENO
SYNOPSIS
In an ambuscade, Cebu mayor Samson Cerna was mortally wounded. His wife and three other companions in the truck
suffered wounds. Mrs. Cerna and the truck driver positively identified appellants Moreno, Rodrigo Baricutaro, Roberto and
Carlos Paslon, and Generalao, political rivals of the slain mayor, as among the perpetrators of the crime. In a dying
declaration, Mayor Cerna stated that he recognized the same five appellants as among their assailants. One year after the
incident and after the trial had commenced, the seven other appellants were implicated as co-conspirators by one
Norteza, a known follower of the mayor, who claimed that he was a co-conspirator in the plot to kill the mayor but that
he withdrew from the same and was not indicted. The ambush appeared to have been the aftermath of the late mayors
issuance of warrants for the arrest of four of the appellants and the incarceration and posting of four bail bonds by
appellant Moreno in connection with an incident during the 1969 elections. The original five accused interposed the
defense of alibi which, however, were either weak and unconvincing, or uncorroborated. The trial court found all twelve
appellants guilty of the complex crime of murder with atentado and four frustrated murders, although the charges were
only
for
murder
with
atentado,
two
frustrated
murders,
and
two
attempted
murders.
The Supreme Court acquitted the seven appellants implicated by Norteza holding that the veracity of his testimony is

impaired not merely by the long delay in giving it but also by the undeniable fact that he was a follower of the slain mayor
which strongly militates against his credibility. It found the conviction of the appellants for four frustrated murders
glaringly erroneous, the charges being merely for two frustrated murders and two attempted murders, and the injuries
suffered
by
the
victims
not
being
capable
of
causing
death.
Decision modified.

SYLLABUS

1. EVIDENCE; GUILT OF ACCUSED CANNOT BE PREDICATED ON DELAYED TESTIMONY WHICH IS EARMARKED BY FABRICATION.
The veracity of the testimony of a witness for the prosecution implicating seven additional accused to the conspiracy to
kill the mayor on said witness claim that he was a co-conspirator to the crime who withdrew from the conspiracy and who
was not indicted, had been impaired not only because of the long delay in giving the testimony but because the witness
was a known follower of the slaim mayor and, therefore, it was not believable that he would have been invited by the
accused
to
join
in
the
conspiracy.
2. CRIMINAL PROCEDURE; GUILT BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT PROVEN BY POSITIVE IDENTIFICATION OF ASSAILANTS BY
EYEWITNESS, DYING DECLARATION OF VICTIM AND FINDING OF MOTIVE; WHEN ALIBI CONFIRMS GUILT OF ACCUSED. The
accuseds complicity in the perpetration of the ambuscade is proven beyond reasonable doubt by the testimonies of two
eyewitnesses to the crime and the victims dying declaration, positively identifying them and positively establishing the
motive for the killing. An accuseds alibi which serves to confirm his guilt because there is no reason for him to sleep in his
sweethearts house which is only three kilometers away from his residence; an accuseds alibi which is nullified by the
testimony of the owner of the house where he claims he has played mahjong that he has not played at that time; or an
alibi that is not corroborated, may not prevail over the testimonies of eyewitnesses to the crime and the dying declaration
of
the
victim
positively
pointing
to
the
accused
as
the
assailants.
3. EVIDENCE; TWENTY-TWO MONTHS IN HIDING AS FUGITIVES FROM JUSTICE CONVEYS IMPRESSION OF GUILT. The fact
that the accused were fugitive from justice for around 22 months, hiding in the mountain barrios, conveys the impression
that
they
had
a
guilty
conscience.
4. CRIMINAL LAW; AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE; NOCTURNITY. Nocturnity is aggravating where the accused took
advantage
of
the
night
for
the
consummation
of
their
nefarious
enterprise.
5. ID.; COMPLEX CRIME OF MURDER WITH ATENTADO (ARTICLE 48, 148 and 248, REVISED PENAL CODE. Where a person in
authority while engaged in the performance of his official duties or on occasion of such performance, has been killed in an
ambuscade which exhibited the characteristics of alevosia (Article 14 (16), Revised Penal Code), the offense committed is
the
complex
crime
of
murder
with
direct
assault
upon
a
person
in
authority.
6. ID.; ID.; PENALTY. In the complex crime of murder with attentado, the penalty of death, the maximum penalty for
murder, the more serious offense, should be imposed. However, for lack of the requisite votes, the Supreme Court would
impose
the
penalty
of reclusion
perpetua.
7. ID.; ACCUSED MAY NOT BE CONVICTED OF FRUSTRATED MURDER FOR A CHARGE OF ATTEMPTED MURDER. Conviction of
the accused of four frustrated murders where only two informations for frustrated murders and two for attempted
murders
were
filed
is
a
glaring
error.
8. ID.; ATTEMPTED MURDER. Where the injuries suffered by the victims could not have caused their death, the crime
committed
is
attempted
murder.
9. ID.; AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE; BAND. Commission of a crime be a band (cuadrilla) is aggravating.
10. ID.; ASSAILANT NOT LIABLE FOR INJURIES SUSTAINED BY VICTIMS WHO DID NOT TESTIFY AT HIS SEPARATE TRIAL. An
assailant who had a separate trial from his co-conspirators cannot be held responsible for the attempted murder
committed against the offended parties where said offended parties and the attending physicians who issued their
corresponding medical certificates did not testify at said separate trial.
COMPOUND COMPLEX CRIMES
PPL VS REODICA
On 31 January 1991, the RTC of Makati, Branch 145, rendered a decision[3] convicting petitioner of the quasi offense of
reckless imprudence resulting in damage to property with slight physical injuries, and sentencing her:

[t]o suffer imprisonment of six (6) months of arresto mayor, and to pay the complainant, Norberto Bonsol y Atienza, the
sum of Thirteen Thousand Five Hundred Forty-Two (P13,542), Philippine Currency, without subsidiary impairment in case
of insolvency; and to pay the costs.[4]
The trial court justified imposing a 6-month prison term in this wise:
As a result of the reckless imprudence of the accused, complainant suffered slight physical injuries (Exhs. D, H and I). In
view of the resulting physical injuries, the penalty to be imposed is not fine, but imprisonment (Gregorio, Fundamental of
Criminal Law Review, Eight Edition 1988, p. 711). Slight physical injuries thru reckless imprudence is now punished with
penalty of arresto mayor in its maximum period (People v. Aguiles, L-11302, October 28, 1960, cited in Gregorios book, p.
718).[5]
III. Applicability of the Rule on Complex Crimes.
Since criminal negligence may, as here, result in more than one felony, should Article 48 of the Revised Code on
complex crimes be applied? Article 48 provides as follows:
ART. 48. Penalty for complex crimes. -- When a single act constitutes two or more grave or less grave felonies, or when an
offense is necessary a means for committing the other, the penalty for the most serious crime shall be imposed, the same
to be applied in its maximum period.
Clearly, if a reckless, imprudent or negligent act results in two or more grave or less grave felonies, a complex crime
is committed. However, in Lontok v. Gorgonio,[27] this Court declared that where one of the resulting offenses in criminal
negligence constitutes a light felony, there is no complex crime, thus:
Applying article 48, it follows that if one offense is light, there is no complex crime. The resulting offenses may be treated
as separate or the light felony may be absorbed by the grave felony. Thus, the light felonies of damage to property and
slight physical injuries, both resulting from a single act of imprudence, do not constitute a complex crime. They cannot be
charged in one information. They are separate offenses subject to distinct penalties (People vs. Turla, 50 Phil. 1001; See
People vs. Estipona, 70 Phil. 513).
Where the single act of imprudence resulted in double less serious physical injuries, damage to property amounting
to P10,000 and slight physical injuries, a chief of police did not err in filing a separate complaint for the slight physical
injuries and another complaint for the lesiones menos graves and damage to property [Arcaya vs. Teleron, L-37446, May
31, 1974, 57 SCRA 363, 365].
Hence, the trial court erred in considering the following felonies as a complex crime: the less grave felony of
reckless imprudence resulting in damage to property in the amount ofP8,542.00 and the light felony of reckless
imprudence resulting in physical injuries.
IVLER vs MODESTO-SAN PEDRO
Article
48
Does
Under Article 365 of the Revised Penal Code

not

Apply

to

Acts

Penalized

The confusion bedeviling the question posed in this petition, to which the MeTC succumbed, stems from persistent but
awkward attempts to harmonize conceptually incompatible substantive and procedural rules in criminal law, namely,
Article 365 defining and penalizing quasi-offenses and Article 48 on complexing of crimes, both under the Revised Penal
Code. Article 48 is a procedural device allowing single prosecution of multiple felonies falling under either of two
categories: (1) when a single act constitutes two or more grave or less grave felonies (thus excluding from its operation
light felonies46); and (2) when an offense is a necessary means for committing the other. The legislature crafted this
procedural tool to benefit the accused who, in lieu of serving multiple penalties, will only serve the maximum of the
penalty for the most serious crime.
In contrast, Article 365 is a substantive rule penalizing not an act defined as a felony but "the mental attitude x x x behind
the act, the dangerous recklessness, lack of care or foresight x x x,"47 a single mental attitude regardless of the resulting
consequences. Thus, Article 365 was crafted as one quasi-crime resulting in one or more consequences.
Ordinarily, these two provisions will operate smoothly. Article 48 works to combine in a single prosecution multiple
intentional crimes falling under Titles 1-13, Book II of the Revised Penal Code, when proper; Article 365 governs the
prosecution of imprudent acts and their consequences. However, the complexities of human interaction can produce a
hybrid quasi-offense not falling under either models that of a single criminal negligence resulting in multiple non-crime
damages to persons and property with varying penalties corresponding to light, less grave or grave offenses. The ensuing
prosecutorial dilemma is obvious: how should such a quasi-crime be prosecuted? Should Article 48s framework apply to
"complex" the single quasi-offense with its multiple (non-criminal) consequences (excluding those amounting to light
offenses which will be tried separately)? Or should the prosecution proceed under a single charge, collectively alleging all

the consequences of the single quasi-crime, to be penalized separately following the scheme of penalties under Article
365?
Jurisprudence adopts both approaches. Thus, one line of rulings (none of which involved the issue of double jeopardy)
applied Article 48 by "complexing" one quasi-crime with its multiple consequences48 unless one consequence amounts to a
light felony, in which case charges were split by grouping, on the one hand, resulting acts amounting to grave or less grave
felonies and filing the charge with the second level courts and, on the other hand, resulting acts amounting to light
felonies and filing the charge with the first level courts.49 Expectedly, this is the approach the MeTC impliedly sanctioned
(and respondent Ponce invokes), even though under Republic Act No. 7691,50 the MeTC has now exclusive original
jurisdiction to impose the most serious penalty under Article 365 which is prision correccional in its medium period.
Under this approach, the issue of double jeopardy will not arise if the "complexing" of acts penalized under Article 365
involves only resulting acts penalized as grave or less grave felonies because there will be a single prosecution of all the
resulting acts. The issue of double jeopardy arises if one of the resulting acts is penalized as a light offense and the other
acts are penalized as grave or less grave offenses, in which case Article 48 is not deemed to apply and the act penalized as
a light offense is tried separately from the resulting acts penalized as grave or less grave offenses.
The second jurisprudential path nixes Article 48 and sanctions a single prosecution of all the effects of the quasi-crime
collectively alleged in one charge, regardless of their number or severity,51 penalizing each consequence separately. Thus,
in Angeles v. Jose,52 we interpreted paragraph three of Article 365, in relation to a charge alleging "reckless imprudence
resulting in damage to property and less serious physical injuries," as follows:
[T]he third paragraph of said article, x x x reads as follows:
When the execution of the act covered by this article shall have only resulted in damage to the property of another, the
offender shall be punished by a fine ranging from an amount equal to the value of said damage to three times such value,
but which shall in no case be less than 25 pesos.
The above-quoted provision simply means that if there is only damage to property the amount fixed therein shall be
imposed, but if there are also physical injuries there should be an additional penalty for the latter. The information
cannot be split into two; one for the physical injuries, and another for the damage to property, x x x.53 (Emphasis
supplied)
By "additional penalty," the Court meant, logically, the penalty scheme under Article 365.
Evidently, these approaches, while parallel, are irreconcilable. Coherence in this field demands choosing one framework
over the other. Either (1) we allow the "complexing" of a single quasi-crime by breaking its resulting acts into separate
offenses (except for light felonies), thus re-conceptualize a quasi-crime, abandon its present framing under Article 365,
discard its conception under the Quizon and Diaz lines of cases, and treat the multiple consequences of a quasi-crime as
separate intentional felonies defined under Titles 1-13, Book II under the penal code; or (2) we forbid the application of
Article 48 in the prosecution and sentencing of quasi-crimes, require single prosecution of all the resulting acts regardless
of their number and severity, separately penalize each as provided in Article 365, and thus maintain the distinct concept
of quasi-crimes as crafted under Article 365, articulated in Quizon and applied to double jeopardy adjudication in the Diaz
line of cases.1avvphi1
A becoming regard of this Courts place in our scheme of government denying it the power to make laws constrains us to
keep inviolate the conceptual distinction between quasi-crimes and intentional felonies under our penal code. Article 48 is
incongruent to the notion of quasi-crimes under Article 365. It is conceptually impossible for a quasi-offense to stand for
(1) a single act constituting two or more grave or less grave felonies; or (2) an offense which is a necessary means for
committing another. This is why, way back in 1968 in Buan, we rejected the Solicitor Generals argument that double
jeopardy does not bar a second prosecution for slight physical injuries through reckless imprudence allegedly because the
charge for that offense could not be joined with the other charge for serious physical injuries through reckless imprudence
following Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code:
The Solicitor General stresses in his brief that the charge for slight physical injuries through reckless imprudence could not
be joined with the accusation for serious physical injuries through reckless imprudence, because Article 48 of the Revised
Penal Code allows only the complexing of grave or less grave felonies. This same argument was considered and rejected by
this Court in the case of People vs. [Silva] x x x:
[T]he prosecutions contention might be true. But neither was the prosecution obliged to first prosecute the accused for
slight physical injuries through reckless imprudence before pressing the more serious charge of homicide with serious
physical injuries through reckless imprudence. Having first prosecuted the defendant for the lesser offense in the Justice
of the Peace Court of Meycauayan, Bulacan, which acquitted the defendant, the prosecuting attorney is not now in a
position to press in this case the more serious charge of homicide with serious physical injuries through reckless
imprudence which arose out of the same alleged reckless imprudence of which the defendant has been previously cleared
by the inferior court.
[W]e must perforce rule that the exoneration of this appellant x x x by the Justice of the Peace x x x of the charge of
slight physical injuries through reckless imprudence, prevents his being prosecuted for serious physical injuries through
reckless imprudence in the Court of First Instance of the province, where both charges are derived from the consequences

of one and the same vehicular accident, because the second accusation places the appellant in second jeopardy for the
same offense.54 (Emphasis supplied)
Indeed, this is a constitutionally compelled choice. By prohibiting the splitting of charges under Article 365, irrespective of
the number and severity of the resulting acts, rampant occasions of constitutionally impermissible second prosecutions are
avoided, not to mention that scarce state resources are conserved and diverted to proper use.
Hence, we hold that prosecutions under Article 365 should proceed from a single charge regardless of the number or
severity of the consequences. In imposing penalties, the judge will do no more than apply the penalties under Article 365
for each consequence alleged and proven. In short, there shall be no splitting of charges under Article 365, and only one
information shall be filed in the same first level court.55
Our ruling today secures for the accused facing an Article 365 charge a stronger and simpler protection of their
constitutional right under the Double Jeopardy Clause. True, they are thereby denied the beneficent effect of the
favorable sentencing formula under Article 48, but any disadvantage thus caused is more than compensated by the
certainty of non-prosecution for quasi-crime effects qualifying as "light offenses" (or, as here, for the more serious
consequence prosecuted belatedly). If it is so minded, Congress can re-craft Article 365 by extending to quasi-crimes the
sentencing formula of Article 48 so that only the most severe penalty shall be imposed under a single prosecution of all
resulting acts, whether penalized as grave, less grave or light offenses. This will still keep intact the distinct concept of
quasi-offenses. Meanwhile, the lenient schedule of penalties under Article 365, befitting crimes occupying a lower rung of
culpability, should cushion the effect of this ruling.
WHEREFORE, we GRANT the petition. We REVERSE the Orders dated 2 February 2006 and 2 May 2006 of the Regional Trial
Court of Pasig City, Branch 157. We DISMISS the Information in Criminal Case No. 82366 against petitioner Jason Ivler y
Aguilar pending with the Metropolitan Trial Court of Pasig City, Branch 71 on the ground of double jeopardy.

COMPLEX CRIME PROPER


PEOPLE vs ABELLA
*Complex Crime
Article 48 of the Revised Penal Code on complex crime is applicable where several accused acted together in killing
several of their fellow prisoners in a prison riot. Only a single penalty is, therefore, imposable. We hold that the
Solicitor Generals submission is not well-taken. In the De los Santos case, supra, which involved two riots on two
successive days in the national penitentiary wherein nine prisoners were killed (five on the first day and four on the
second day), the fourteen members of the Sigue-Sigue gang who took part in the killing were convicted of multiple murder
(a complex crime) and not of nine separate murders. Only one death penalty was imposed. It was commuted to reclusion
perpetua for lack of necessary votes. There is no compelling reason for not deciding this case in the same way as the De
los Santos case. The two cases are very similar.
Propriety of the imposition of the death penalty on the eighteen accused. As to the fourteen deceased victims, the
crime is murder qualified by treachery which absorbs abuse of superiority and cuadrilla. As to those who pleaded guilty,
that mitigating circumstance is offset by evident premeditation. Recidivism is aggravating as to some accused. As to all
the eighteen accused, quasi-recidivism is a special aggravating circumstance which justifies the imposition of the penalty
for murder (reclusion temporalmaximum to death) in its maximum period or death.
The fiscal and the trial court treated the fourteen killings and the injuries inflicted on the three victims as a complex
crime of multiple murder and multiple frustrated murder. The trial court imposed a single death penalty.
However, the Solicitor General submits that the accused should be convicted of fourteen separate murders and three
separate frustrated murders and punished, respectively, byfourteen death penalties and three penalties for the frustrated
murders because the killings and injuries were effected by distinct acts.
It is argued that article 48 of the Revised Penal Code is not applicable to this case. Cited in support of that stand is the
ruling in U.S. vs. Ferrer, 1 Phil. 56 that where the defendant has fired two shots, killing one party and wounding another,
the acts constitute two distinct crimes, each of which must be tried separately.
COMPLEX CRIME PROPER
PEOPLE VS BOHOS
THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee,vs. EULALIO BOHOS, ET AL., defendant-appellant.
Criminal Law; Abduction with Rape; Conspiracy; The fact that the accused unexpectedly met a woman at night in a
deserted place does not negate the existence of conspiracy, where she was later ravished by all the accused.It is true
that there is no evidence in the record of a previous plan among the accused to abduct Myrna in order to rape her. No

witness testified to have seen or heard the accused conspire or confabulate. The whole incident happened because the
four accused met a woman walking alone at a deserted place at night. But for collective responsibility to be established,
it is not necessary that conspiracy be proved by direct evidence of a prior agreement to commit the crime. It is sufficient
that at the time of the commission of the offense all the accused acted in concert showing that they had the same
purpose or common design and were united in its execution.
Same; Same; Same.The simultaneous acts of the four accused two of them holding Myrnas hands and the other two
covering her mouth as they accosted her on the highway; the four of them dragging Myrna aboard the truck which they
stopped and where she was violated by one of them with the assistance and encouragement of the three others; the four
of them alternately and successively ravishing her inside the house of Teodoro Engio three times each on the night of
September 17, 1966, and one each the following morning while one held complainants right arm, another held her left
arm and another stretched her legs wide aparttogether with other circumstances, make evident a community of design,
an indicia of a conspiracy to abduct complainant forcibly for the satisfaction of their carnal desire against her will.
Same; Same; There is only one crime of abduction with rape even if later the woman was raped several times more. The
latter constitutes separate crimes of rape, not separate crimes of abduction with rape each .Appellants other point is:
Even if we may assume purely for the sake of argument that the complaining witness was forcibly abducted and then
raped thirteen times, we submit that there was only one forcible abduction, with rape and that was the one allegedly
committed on the truck or jeep. Any subsequent acts of the intercouse in the house against her will would be only
separate acts of rape can no longer be considered separate complex crimes of forcible abduction with rape. This point is
well taken. There was only one forcible abduction with rape which was the one committed in the truck. Thus in People vs.
Jose, et al., G.R. No. L-28232, Feb. 6, 1971, 37 SCRA 450, where the four accused forcibly abducted Maggie de la Riva and
each of them raped her, this Court held that even while the first act of rape was being performed, the crime of forcible
abduction had already been consummated, so that each of the three succeeding crimes of the same nature can not legally
be considered as still connected with the abductionin other words, they should be detached from, and considered
independently of, that of forcible abduction and, therefore, the former can no longer be complexed with the latter. (At
p. 475.)
Same; Nocturnity should not be appreciated when not purposely sought.The aggravating circumstance of abuse of
superior strength was correctly appreciated by the trial court but it erred when it also added nocturnity for there is no
evidence to show that nighttime was purposely chosen to facilitate the commission of the crime.
COMPLEX CRIME PROPER
PPL vs JOSE
see down
COMPLEX CRIME PROPER
PPL vs RODAS
1.CRIMINAL PROCEDURE; COMPLAINT OR INFORMATION ; COMPLEX CRIME, HOW DETERMINED.In order to determine
whether two offenses constitute a complex crime, the court should not find out whether, in accordance with their
definition by law, one of them is an essential element of the other, such as physical injuries which cause the death of
the victim, or stealing of personal property without the consent of the owner through force or violence, for in such
cases there would be only one single offense of homicide in the first and robbery in the second case. But it should
take iiito consideration the facts alleged in a complamt or information and determine whether one of the two
separate and different offenses charged therein was committed as a necessary means to commit the other offense; if
it were the two offenses constitute one complex crime; otherwise the complaint or information charges two crimes
or offenses independent from one another. Examples are given in the resolution.
2.COURTS; JURISDICTION ; COMPLEX CRIME.The crirne charged being a complex crime of kidnapping and murder, the
court of first instance of any province in which any one of the essential elements of said complex offense has been
committed, has jurisdiction to take cognizance of the offense; and, therefore, the Court of First Instance of Manila from
where the victim was kidnapped has jurisdiction over the offense, for the crime of kidnapping is a continuous offense
committed in Manila and continued all the way to the place where the victim was taken and murdered.

This is a motion for reconsideration of our resolution dated July 11, 1947, which reads as follows:
Passing upon the petition for certiorari in G.R. No. L-1536, Ricardo Parulan vs. Sotero Rodas, etc. et al.,praying
for relief from the order of the respondent Judge of the Court of First Instance of Manila, dated July 8, 1947,
denying petitioner's motion to quash the information filed in criminal case No. 3649 of said respondent Court as
well as petitioner's motion for reconsideration and praying, further, for the issuance of a writ of preliminary
injunction restraining the respondent Judge from arraigning the petitioner of July 12, 1947: the Court resolved to
dismiss said petition on the ground that the Court of First Instance of Manila has jurisdiction over the complex

offense of kidnapping with murder, the one charged in the information. . . .


Section 48 of the Penal Code, providing for penalties for complex crime, says that "when an offense is a necessary means
to commit the other, the penalty for the most serious crime shall be imposed, the same to be applied in its maximum
period." Therefore, the question for determination in the present case is whether the offense charged in the information
is a complex crime of kidnapping and murder, the former as a necessary means for committing the latter.
In order to determine whether two offenses constitute a complex crime, we should not find out whether, in accordance
with their definition by law, one of them is an essential element of the other, such as physical injuries which cause the
death of the victim, or stealing of personal property without the consent of the owner through force or violence, for in
such cases there would be only one single offense of homicide in the first and robbery in the second case. But we should
take into consideration the facts alleged in a complaint or information and determine whether one of the two separate
and different offenses charged therein was committed as a necessary means to commit the other offense; if it were the
two offenses constitute one complex crime; otherwise the complaint or information charges two crimes or offenses
independent from one another.
For example, the crime of falsification of a private document is not in general, an essential element of the crime
ofestafa, because this offense may be committed through many and varied means; but if a defendant is charged in a
complaint or information with having committed falsification of a private document as a means for committing estafa, the
offense charged would be a complex offense of estafa through falsification. Also, abduction is, in general, not an essential
element of rape because rape may be committed anywhere without necessity of forcibly abducting or taking the victim to
another place for that purpose; but if the offense charged is that the defendant abducted or carried by force the victim
from one place to another wherein the latter was raped by the former, the crime charged would be a complex crime of
rape through abduction, the abduction being in such a case a necessary means to commit the rape. And although homicide
or murder may be committed wherever the victim may be found, yet if the charge in a complaint or information is that
the victim was kidnapped and taken to another distant place in order to demand ransom for his release and kill him if
ransom is not paid, the offense charged would evidently be a complex crime of murder through kidnapping, the latter
being a necessary means to commit the former.
The pertinent part of the information reads as follows:
That on or about the 10th day of June, 1947, in the City of Manila, Philippines, the said accused, being then
private individuals, conspiring and confederating together and all helping one another, did then and there
wilfully, unlawfully, feloniously, and for purpose of extorting ransom from one Arthur Lee or of killing him if the
desired amount of money could not be given, kidnap, carry away in an automobile, detain, and later, after having
taken him to an uninhabited place by means of a motor boat, with treachery, to wit: while the said Arthur Lee
was deprived of his liberty and was very weak as a result of the physical injuries which had been previously
inflicted upon him by the said accused, fire upon him with a .45 caliber pistol several shots thru the chest and
head, fracturing the right 5th and 6th ribs and the skull and lacerating the brain, thereby inflicting upon him
physical injuries which directly caused the death of the said Arthur Lee almost instantaneously.
From a cursory examination of the foregoing it clearly appears that the crime charged is kidnapping and murder and the
former was committed by the defendants as a necessary means "for the purpose of extorting ransom from the victim or
killing him if the desired amount of money could not be given," that is, that the defendants had to kidnap or carry the
victim to a faraway and secluded place in order to better secure the consent of the victim through fear to pay the ransom,
and kill him with certain sense of impunity and certainty that no other person may witness the commission of the offense
by the defendants if the victim refused to accede to their demand, and that in fact he was killed by the defendants
because of his refusal to pay the ransom.
The crime charged being a complex crime of kidnapping and murder, the court of first instance of any province in which
any one of the essential elements of said complex offense has been committed, has jurisdiction to take cognizance of the
offense; and, therefore, the Court of First Instance of Manila from where the victim was kidnapped has jurisdiction over
the offense committed in Manila and continued all the way to the place where the victim was taken and murdered.
The motion for reconsideration is therefore denied.
SPECIAL COMPLEX
PPL vs JULIAN
Complaining witness was forcibly abducted and then raped thirteen times, there was only one forcible abduction with
rape. Any subsequent acts of intercourse would be only separate acts of rape .On the other hand, Appellant Julian and
the other accused cannot be held liable for three counts of forcible abduction with rape. This is based on the
pronouncement of the Court in People vs. Bohos which was reiterated in People vs. Bacalso that: Appellants other point
is: Even if we may assume purely for the sake of argument that the complaining witness was forcibly abducted and then
raped thirteen times, we submit that there was only one forcible abduction with rape and that was the one allegedly
committed on the truck or jeep. Any subsequent acts of intercourse in the house against her will would be only separate
acts of rape and can no longer be considered separate complex crimes of forcible abduction with rape. This point is well

taken. There was only one forcible abduction with rape which was the one committed in the truck. Thus, in People vs.
Jose, et al., G.R. No. L28322, February 6, 1971, 37 SCRA 450, where the four accused abducted Maggie de la Riva and
each of them raped her, this Court held, that even while the first act of rape was being performed, the crime of forcible
abduction had already been consummated, so that each of the three succeeding crimes of the same nature cannot legally
be considered as still connected with the abductionin other words they should be detached from, and considered
independently of, that of forcible abduction and, therefore, the former can no longer be complexed with the latter.

SPECIAL COMPLEX
PPL vs LARRANGA
Same; Same; Special Complex Crimes; Where the victim is killed or died as a consequence of the detention, or is raped or
subjected to torture or dehumanizing acts, this gives rise to the special complex crime of kidnapping with murder or
homicide or rape.Article 267 states that if the victim is killed or died as a consequence of the detention, or is raped or
subjected to torture or dehumanizing acts, the maximum penalty shall be imposed. In People vs. Ramos, citing Parulan vs.
Rodas, and People vs. Mercado, we held that this provision gives rise to a special complex crime.
Same; Same; Same; Same; Where the law provides a single penalty for two or more component offenses, the resulting
crime is called a special complex crime.A discussion on the nature of special complex crime is imperative. Where the
law provides a single penalty for two or more component offenses, the resulting crime is called a special complex crime.
Some of the special complex crimes under the Revised Penal Code are (1) robbery with homicide, (2) robbery with rape,
(3) kidnapping with serious physical injuries, (4) kidnapping with murder or homicide, and (5) rape with homicide. In a
special complex crime, the prosecution must necessarily prove each of the component offenses with the same precision
that would be necessary if they were made the subject of separate complaints. As earlier mentioned, R.A. No. 7659
amended Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code by adding thereto this provision: When the victim is killed or dies as a
consequence of the detention, or is raped, or is subjected to torture or dehumanizing acts, the maximum penalty shall
be imposed; and that this provision gives rise to a special complex crime.
Same; Same; Same; Where it appears from the overwhelming evidence that there is a direct relation, and intimate
connection between the kidnapping, killing and raping of the victim, rape cannot be considered merely as an
aggravating circumstance but as a component offense forming part of the special complex crime of kidnapping and
serious illegal detention with homicide and rape.Considering that the prosecution was able to prove each of the
component offenses, appellants should be convicted of the special complex crime of kidnapping and serious illegal
detention with homicide and rape. It appearing from the overwhelming evidence of the prosecution that there is a direct
relation, and intimate connection between the kidnapping, killing and raping of Marijoy, rape cannot be considered
merely as an aggravating circumstance but as a component offense forming part of the herein special complex crime. It
bears reiterating that in People vs. Ramos, and People vs. Mercado, interpreting Article 267, we ruled that where the
person killed in the course of the detention, regardless of whether the killing was purposely sought or was merely an
afterthought, the kidnapping and murder or homicide can no longer be complexed under Article 48, nor be treated as
separate crimes, but shall be punished as a special complex crime under the last paragraph of Article 267. The same
principle applies here. The kidnapping and serious illegal detention can no longer be complexed under Article 48, nor be
treated as separate crime but shall be punished as a special complex crime. At any rate, the technical designation of the
crime is of no consequence in the imposition of the penalty considering that kidnapping and serious illegal detention if
complexed with either homicide or rape, still, the maximum penalty of death shall be imposed.
Same; Same; Same; Right to be Informed; Consistent with the accuseds right to be informed of the nature and cause of
the accusation against him, attendant circumstances or component offenses must be specifically pleaded or alleged with
certainty in the information and proven during the trial, otherwise they cannot give rise to a special complex crime .
Anent Criminal Case No. CBU-45304 wherein Jacqueline is the victim, the penalty ofreclusion perpetua shall be imposed
upon appellants considering that the above-mentioned component offenses were not alleged in the Information as
required under Sections 8 and 9, Rule 110 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure. Consistent with appellants right to
be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against him, these attendant circumstances or component offenses
must be specifically pleaded or alleged with certainty in the information and proven during the trial. Otherwise, they

cannot give rise to a special complex crime, as in this case. Hence, the crime committed is only simple kidnapping and
serious illegal detention.
Same; Same; Conspiracy; Well settled is the rule that in conspiracy, direct proof of a previous agreement to commit a
crime is not necessaryit may be deduced from the mode and manner by which the offense was perpetrated, or inferred
from the acts of the accused themselves when such point to a joint design and community of interest .From the
evidence of the prosecution, there is no doubt that all the appellants conspired in the commission of the crimes charged.
Their concerted actions point to their joint purpose and community of intent. Well settled is the rule that in conspiracy,
direct proof of a previous agreement to commit a crime is not necessary. It may be deduced from the mode and manner
by which the offense was perpetrated, or inferred from the acts of the accused themselves when such point to a joint
design and community of interest. Otherwise stated, it may be shown by the conduct of the accused before, during, and
after the commission of the crime. Appellants actions showed that they have the same objective to kidnap and detain the
Chiong sisters.
Same; Same; Same; To hold an accused guilty as co-principal by reason of conspiracy, he must be shown to have
performed an overt act in pursuance or furtherance of the complicity; Responsibility of a conspirator is not confined to
the accomplishment of a particular purpose of conspiracy but extends to collateral acts and offenses incident to and
growing out of the purpose intended.Clearly, the argument of Rowen, Ariel and Alberto that they were not part of the
conspiracy as they were merely present during the perpetration of the crimes charged but not participants therein, is
bereft of merit. To hold an accused guilty as co-principal by reason of conspiracy, he must be shown to have performed an
overt act in pursuance or furtherance of the complicity. There must be intentional participation in the transaction with a
view to the furtherance of the common design and purpose. Responsibility of a conspirator is not confined to the
accomplishment of a particular purpose of conspiracy but extends to collateral acts and offenses incident to and growing
out of the purpose intended. As shown by the evidence for the prosecution, Rowen, Ariel and Alberto were not merely
present at the scene of the crime.
Same; Same; Penalties; Mitigating Circumstances;Minority; The imposable penalty on an accused by reason of his
minority is one degree lower than the statutory penalty.Indeed, all appellants, except James Anthony who was 16 years
old when the crimes charged were committed, share the same degree of responsibility for their criminal acts. Under
Article 68 of the Revised Penal Code, the imposable penalty on James Anthony, by reason of his minority, is one degree
lower than the statutory penalty. This means that he stands to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua in Criminal Case
No. CBU-45303 and twelve (12) years of prision mayor in its maximum period, as minimum, to seventeen (17) years
of reclusion temporal in its medium period, as maximum, in Criminal Case No. CBU-45304. The penalty for the special
complex crime of kidnapping and serious illegal detention with homicide and rape, being death, one degree lower
therefrom is reclusion perpetua. On the other hand, the penalty for simple kidnapping and serious illegal detention
is reclusion perpetua to death. One degree lower from the said penalty is reclusion temporal. There being no aggravating
and mitigating circumstance, the penalty to be imposed on James Anthony is reclusion temporal in its medium period.
Applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law, he should be sentenced to suffer the penalty of twelve (12) years of prision
mayor in its maximum period, as minimum, to seventeen (17) years of reclusion temporal in its medium period, as
maximum.
On the night of July 16, 1997, victims Marijoy and Jacqueline Chiong failed to come home on the expected time. Two days
after, a young woman was found dead at the foot of a cliff. Her pants were torn, her t-shirt was raised up to her breast
and her bra was pulled down.Her face and neck were covered with masking tape and attached to her left wrist was a
handcuff. The woman was identified as Marijoy.After almost ten months, accused Davidson Rusia surfaced and admitted
before the police having participated in the abduction of the sisters. He identified appellants Francisco Juan Larraaga,
Josman Aznar, Rowen Adlawan, Alberto Cao, Ariel Balansag, James Anthony Uy, and James Andrew Uy as co-perpetrators
in the crime. Rusia provided the following before the trial court:
1) That at 10:30 in the evening of July 16, 1997, he met Rowen and Josman and told him to ride with them in a white car.
Following them were Larraaga, James Anthony and James Andrew who were in a red car. Josman stopped the white car
in front of the waiting shed where the sisters Marijoy and Jacqueline were standing and forced them to ride the car. Rusia
taped their mouths while Rowen handcuffed them jointly.
2) That after stopping by a safehouse, the group thereafter headed to the South Bus Terminal where they met Alberto and

Ariel, and hired the white van driven by the former. They traveled towards south of Cebu City, leaving the red car at the
South Bus Terminal.
3) That after parking their vehicles near a precipice, they drank and had a pot session. Later, they started to rape Marijoy
inside the vehicle, and thereafter raped Jaqueline.
4) That Josman intructed Rowen and Ariel to bring Marijoy to the cliff and push her into the ravine.
The claims of Rusia were supported by other witnesses. He was discharged as an accused and became a state witness.
Still, the body of Jacqueline was never found. The trial court found the other appellants guilty of two crimes of
kidnapping and serious illegal detention and sentenced each of them to suffer the penalties of two (2) reclusiones
perpetua. The appellants assailed the said decision, arguing inter alia, that court erred in finding that there was
consipiracy. James Anthony was also claimed to be only 16 years old when the crimes were committed.
ISSUES:
1) Whether or not there was conspiracy.
2) Whether or not the trial court erred in characterizing the crime.
3) Whether or not the trial court erred imposing the correct penalty.
HELD:
1) Yes. Conspiracy may be deduced from the mode and manner by which the offense was perpetrated, or may be inferred
from the acts of the accused themselves, when such point to a joint design and community of interest. The appellants
actions showed that they had the same objective to kidnap and detain the Chiong sisters. The Court affirmed the trial
courts finding that the appellants indeed conspired in the commission of the crimes charged.
2) Yes. The rule is that when the law provides a single penalty for two or more component offenses, the resulting crime is
called a special complex crime. Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by Section 8 of R.A. 7659, provides
that in the crime of kidnapping and serious illegal detention, when the victim is killed or dies as a consequence of the
detention, or is raped or is subjected to torture or dehumanizing acts, the maximum penalty shall be imposed. Thus, the
resulting crime will change from complex crime to special complex crime. In the present case, the victims were raped and
subjected to dehumanizing acts. Thus, the Court held that all the appellants were guilty of the special complex crime of
kidnapping and serious illegal detention with homicide and rape in the case where Marijoy is the victim; and simple
kidnapping and serious illegal detention in the case of Jacqueline.
3) Yes. Article 68 of the Revised Penal Code provides that by reason of minority, the imposable penalty to the offender is
one degree lower than the statutory penalty. James Anthony was only 16 years old when the crimes were committed. As
penalty for the special complex crime of kidnapping and serious illegal detention with homicide and rape is death, the
correct penalty to be imposed should be reclusion perpetua. On the other hand, the penalty for simple kidnapping and
serious illegal detention is reclusion perpetua to death. One degree lower from the said penalty is reclusion temporal.
There being no aggravating and mitigating circumstance, the penalty to be imposed on him should be reclusion temporal
in its medium period. Applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law, he should be sentenced to suffer the penalty of twelve
(12) years of prision mayor in its maximum period, as minimum, to seventeen (17) years of reclusion temporal in its
medium period, as maximum. With regard to the rest of the appellants, the statutory penalty as provided above should be
imposed. Therefore, trial court erred in merely imposing two (2) reclusiones perpetua.
SPECIAL COMPLEX
PPL VS NANG
Same; Complex Crimes; Robbery with Homicide; In the crime of robbery with homicide, the homicide may precede
robbery or may occur after robbery. In the crime of robbery with homicide, the homicide may precede robbery or may
occur after robbery. What is essential is that there is a nexus, an intimate connection between robbery and the killing
whether the latter be prior or subsequent to the former or whether both crimes be committed at the same time.
Same; Same; Same; The rule is well-established that whenever homicide has been committed as a consequence of or on
the occasion of the robbery, all those who took part as principals in the robbery will also be held guilty as principals of
the special complex crime of robbery with homicide although they did not actually take part in the homicide, unless it
clearly appears that they endeavored to prevent the homicide.Likewise, the rule is well-established that whenever
homicide has been committed as a consequence of or on the occasion of the robbery, all those who took part as principals
in the robbery will also be held guilty as principals of the special complex crime of robbery with homicide although they

did not actually take part in the homicide, unless it clearly appears that they endeavored to prevent the homicide. Such
exception does not apply in the instant case. By their concerted action, accused-appellants and Pablito Nang obviously
conspired to rob the Gonzales family, on which occasion they killed Nicanor to facilitate their criminal intent. It is
immaterial, therefore, that accused-appellants merely held the arms of Nicanor Gonzales while Pablito Nang stabbed him.
In view of the presence of conspiracy, all the perpetrators of the crime shall bear equal responsibility.
Same; Same; Same; Penalties; Reclusion perpetua and life imprisonment are not synonymous penalties-these are distinct
in nature, in duration and in accessory penalties.The special complex crime of robbery with homicide carries the
penalty of reclusion perpetua to death under Article 294 (1) of the Revised Penal Code. In the case at bar, the proper
imposable penalty upon accused-appellants isreclusion perpetua in the absence of proven mitigating or aggravating
circumstances. However, the trial court erroneously imposed on accused-appellants the penalty ofreclusion perpetua or
life imprisonment. Reclusion perpetua and life imprisonment are not synonymous penalties-these are distinct in nature,
in duration and in accessory penalties. This Court has distinguished between the two penalties in previous decisions, going
as far back asPeople v. Mobe and, recently, in People v. Antonio Maganathus: The Code (Revised Penal Code) does not
prescribe the penalty of life imprisonment for any of the felonies therein defined, that penalty being invariably imposed
for serious offenses penalized not by the x x x Code but by the special law. Reclusion perpetua entails imprisonment for at
least (30) years, after which the convict becomes eligible for pardon. It also carries with it accessory penalties, namely:
perpetual special disqualification, etc. It is not the same as life imprisonment which, for one thing, does not carry with
it any accessory penalty, and for another, does not appear to have any definite extent or duration.
FACTS:
When Elizabeth, daughter of the deceased Nicanor Gonzales, went downstairs to take her turn in using the toilet adjacent
to their house, she saw her father being attacked by three masked men. As Nicanor was struggling with the assailants,
their T-shirt masks dropped, enabling Elizabeth to recognize them. She was able to identify accused Sumina Gamo,
Lumonsog Gabasan, and Pablito Nang since they used to pass by their place. After stabbing Nicanor, the three accused
rushed inside the house and met Epifania Gozales, wife of Nicanor, who was about to step out having heard the
commotion. Epifania was also able to recognize the accused as Gabasan used to sell copra to them and buy on credit from
her store and Nang being infamous in their community. Gabasan demanded money from Epifania who replied that they had
none. While Nang was restraining her, Gamo searched their trunk and took the money in it. As three accused fled, Nicanor
was still able to utter the names of Nang and Gamo to his wife. Nicanor sustained stab wounds in his middle back and
chest which caused his death while Epifania sustained wounds in her left wrist and neck. Nang remained at large while
Gamo and Gabasan were found guilty of the crime of robbery with homicide and were sentenced to reclusion perpetua or
life imprisonment.
ISSUE:
1) Whether or not the crimes committed would constitute a special complex crime.
2) Whether or not the court erred in imposing the correct penalty for the crime committed.
HELD:
1) Yes. For the special complex crime of robbery with homicide to be appreciated, the prosecution should be able to
establish that: (a) violence or intimidation against a person was used in the taking of personal property; (b) the property
thus taken belongs to another; (c) the taking is characterized by intent to gain or animus lucrandi and (d) on the occasion
of the robbery or by reason thereof, the crime of homicide, which is therein used in a generic sense, was committed. The
accused took the money in the victims trunk with the use of violence and intimidation, wherein Nicanor in fact died as a
consequence. The elements of the special complex crime of robbery with homicide had been adequately established.
2) No. Reclusion perpetua and life imprisonment are not synonymous penalties as they are distinct in nature, in duration
and in accessory penalties. The Revised Penal Code does not prescribe the penalty of life imprisonment for any of the
felonies therein defined, but is rather imposed for serious offenses penalized by special law. Reclusion perpetua entails
imprisonment for a definite duration, after which the convict becomes eligible for pardon. It also carries with it accessory
penalties. Life imprisonment, on the other hand, does not carry with it any accessory penalty and does not appear to have
any definite extent or duration. Thus, The Court modified the penalty and ordered for the phrase or life imprisonment
be deleted.

SIMULTANEOUS / SUCCESSIVE SENTENCE


PEOPLE vs JOSE
Penalty; Imposition of four death penalty.The Supreme Court is of the opinion that in view of the existence of
conspiracy among the accused arid of its finding as regards the nature and number of crimes committed, as well as of the
presence of aggravating circumstances, four death penalties should be imposed in the premises.
In refusing to impose as many death penalties as there are offenses committed, the trial court applied by analogy Article
70 of the Revised Penal Code, which provides that the maximum duration of all the penalties therein imposed upon the
appellant shall not be more than threefold the length of time corresponding to the most severe of the penalties imposed
upon the appellant, which should not exceed forty years. The said court is of the opinion that since a man has only one
life to pay for a wrong, the ends of justice would be served, and society and the victim would be vindicated just as well,
if only one death penalty were imposed on each of the appellants.
We cannot agree with the trial court. Article 70 of the Revised Penal Code can only be taken into account in connection
with the service of the sentence imposed, not in the imposition of the penalty (People vs. Escares, 55 Off. Gaz., 623). In
holding that only one death penalty should be imposed because man has only one life, the trial court ignored the principle
enunciated in the very case it cited, namely, U.S. vs. Balaba, 37 Phil., 260, where this Court, in affirming the judgment of
the trial court, found the accused guilty of two murders and one homicide and imposed upon him two death sentences for
the murders and a prison term for the homicide. In not applying the said principle, the courta quo said that the case of
Balaba is different from the present case, for while in the former case the accused was found to have committed three
distinct offenses, here only one offense is charged, even if complex. As We have explained earlier herein, four crimes
were committed, charged and proved. There is, therefore, no substantial difference between the two cases insofar as the
basic philosophy involved is concerned, for the fact remains that in the case of Balaba this Court did not hesitate to affirm
the two death sentences imposed on the accused by the trial court. In People vs. Peralta, et al., L-19060, October 29,
1968, in which this Court imposed on each of the six accused three death penalties for three distinct and separate crimes
of murder, We said that since it is the settled rule that once conspiracy is established, the act of one conspirator is
attributable to all, then each conspirator must be held liable for each of the felonious acts committed as a result of the
conspiracy, regardless of the nature and severity of the appropriate penalties prescribed by law. In the said case (which
was promulgated after the decision of the court a quohad been handed down) We had occasion to discuss at length the
legality and practicality of imposing multiple death penalties, thus:
The imposition of multiple death penalties is decried by some as a useless formality, an exercise in futility. It is
contended, undeniably enough, that a death convict, like all mortals, has only one life to forfeit. And because of this
physiological and biological attribute of man, it is reasoned that the imposition of multiple death penalties is impractical
and futile because after the service of one capital penalty, the execution of the rest of the death penalties will naturally
be rendered impossible. The foregoing opposition to the multiple imposition of death penalties suffers from four basic
flaws: (1) it fails to consider the legality of imposing multiple capital penalties; (2) it fails to distinguish between
imposition of penalty and service of sentence; (3) it ignores the fact that multiple death sentences could be served
simultaneously; and (4) it overlooks the practical merits of imposing multiple death penalties.
The imposition of a penalty and the service of a sentence are two distinct, though related, concepts. The imposition of
the proper penalty or penalties is determined by the nature, gravity and number of offenses charged and proved, whereas
service of sentence is determined by the severity and character of the penalty or penalties imposed. In the imposition of
the proper penalty or penalties, the court does not concern itself with the possibility or practicality of the service of the
sentence, since actual service is a contingency subject to varied factors like the successful escape of the convict, grant of
executive clemency or natural death of the prisoner. All that go into the imposition of the proper penalty or penalties, to
reiterate, are the nature, gravity and number of the offenses charged and proved and the corresponding penalties
prescribed by law.
Multiple death penalties are not impossible to serve because they will have to be executed simultaneously. A cursory
reading of article 70 will show that there are only two moves of serving two or more (multiple)
penalties:simultaneously or successively. The first rule is that two or more penalties shall be served simultaneously if the
nature of the penalties will so permit. In the case of multiple capital penalties, the nature of said penal sanctions does
not only permit but actually necessitates simultaneous service.
The imposition of multiple death penalties, far from being a useless formality, has practical importance. The sentencing
of an accused to several capital penalties is an indelible badge of his extreme criminal perversity, which may not be
accurately projected by the imposition of only one death sentence irrespective of the number of capital felonies for which
he is liable. Showing thus the reprehensible character of the convict in its real dimensions, the possibility of a grant of
executive clemency is justifiably reduced in no small measure. Hence, the imposition of multiple death penalties could
effectively serve as a deterrent to an improvident grant of pardon or commutation. Faced with the utter delinquency of
such a convict, the proper penitentiary authorities would exercise judicious restraint in recommending clemency or

leniency in his behalf.


Granting, however, that the Chief Executive, in the exercise of his constitutional power to pardon (one of the
presidential prerogatives which is almost absolute) deems it proper to commute the multiple death penalties to multiple
life imprisonments, then the practical effect is that the convict has to serve the maximum forty (40) years of multiple life
sentences. If only one death penalty is imposed, and then is commuted to life imprisonment, the convict will have to
serve a maximum of only thirty years corresponding to a single life sentence.
We are, therefore, of the opinion that in view of the existence of conspiracy among them and of our finding as regards the
nature and number of the crimes committed, as well as of the presence of aggravating circumstances, four death
penalties should be imposed in the premises.
Facts: On June 26, 1967, four (4) principal-accused Jaime Jose, Basilio Pineda Jr., alias Boy, Eduardo Aquino Alias
Eddie and Rogelio Caal; together with Wong Lay Pueng, Silverio Guanzon and Jessie Guion as accomplices, conspired
together, confederated with and mutually helped one another, then and there, to willfully, unlawfully and feloniously,
with lewd design to forcibly abduct Magdalena Maggie de la Riva, 25 years old and single, a movie actress by profession
at the time of the incident, where the four principal accused, by means of force and intimidation using a deadly weapon,
have carnal knowledge of the complainant against her will, and brought her to the Swanky Hotel in Pasay City, and hence
committed the crime of Forcible Abduction with Rape.
Wherefore, the court finds that the accomplices Pueng, Guanzon and Guion, on the ground that the prosecution has failed
to establish a prima facie case against them, the Motion to Dismiss filed for and in their behalf is hereby granted, and the
case dismissed against them.
Undoubtedly, rape is that which is punishable by the penalty reclusion perpetua to death, under paragraph 3, Article 335,
as amended by Republic Act 4111 which took effect on June 20, 1964. Under the law, rape is committed by having canal
knowledge of a woman under any of the following circumstances: (1) by using force and intimidation; (2) when the woman
is deprived of reason and otherwise unconscious; and (3) when the woman is under twelve years of age, even though
neither of the circumstances mentioned in the two next preceding paragraphs shall be present. The crime of rape shall be
punished by reclusion perpetua. Whenever the rape is committed the use of a deadly weapon or by two or more persons,
the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death.
As regards, therefore, the complex crime of forcible abduction with rape, the first of the crimes committed, and the
latter is the more serious; hence, pursuant to the provision of Art 48 of the RPC, the penalty prescribed shall be imposed
in its maximum period. Consequently, the appellants should suffer the extreme penalty of death. In this regard, there is
hardly any necessity to consider the attendance of aggravating circumstances, for the same would not alter the nature of
the penalty to be imposed.
However, said crime as attended with the following aggravating circumstances: (a) nighttime, appellants having purposely
sought such circumstance to facilitate the commission of these crimes; (b) abuse of superior strength, the crime having
been committed by the four appellants in conspiracy with one another; (c) ignominy, since the appellants in ordering the
complaint to exhibit to them her complete nakedness for ten minutes before raping her, brought about a circumstance
which tended to make the effects of the crime more humiliating; and (d) the use of motor vehicle.
Of the three principal-appellants (Jose, Aquino and Caal), none of them may claim aggravating circumstances has been
offset by the mitigating circumstance. Appellant Pineda should, however, be credited with the mitigating circumstance of
voluntary plea of guilty, a factor which does not in the least affect the nature of the proper penalties to be imposed, for
the reason that there would still be three aggravating circumstances remaining.
Insofar as the car used in the commission of the crime is concerned, the order of the court a quo for its confiscation is
hereby set aside; and whoever is in custody thereof is hereby ordered to deliver its possession to intervenor Filipinas
Investment & Finance Corporation in accordance with the judgment of the First Instance of Manila in Civil Case No. 69993
thereof.
AN N OTATI O N
MULTIPLE FORCIBLE ABDUCTION WITH RAPE
The case of People vs. Jaime Jose, Basilio Pineda, Jr. alias Boy, Edgardo Aquino and Rogelio Caal (G.R. No. L-28232,
promulgated on February 6, 1971, supra), reiterates and clarifies the previous rulings on the complex crimes of forcible
abduction with rape committed by several persons.
This case was elevated to the Supreme Court for automatic review in view of the death penalty imposed.
The Crime of Forcible Abduction and Rape
The abduction of any woman against her will and with lewd designs is punished by reclusion temporal (Art. 342, R.P.C.). In
forcible abduction (Art. 342) and rape (Art. 335) the age and character of the offended woman are not material. The

character of the offended party, whether virgin or of good reputation, is not material (People vs. Torres, 62 Phil. 942).
Both crimes may be committed by force or violence.
An accused cannot be legally convicted of forcible abduction under an information charging consented abduction (People
vs. Guhil, 56 O.G. 1191).
Actual illicit relations with the woman need not be established. The mere intent to seduce is sufficient. The lewd designs
may be inferred from the acts (People vs. Ramirez,39 Phil. 738; People vs. Bustos, 54 Phil. 887; People vs. Castillo, 76
Phil. 839).
Penalty Imposed if Commited by Two or more Persons
When the crime of rape is commited by two or more perosns, the penalty to be imposed, if convicted, shall bereclusion
perpetua to death (par. 3, Art. 335, Revised Penal Code, as amended by Rep. Act 4111, approved on June 20, 1964). By
analogyto Art. 294 of the Revised Penal COde on robbery with violence, Rep. Act 2632 so provides for special crimes of
rape with homicide, frustrated or attempted rape with homicide; rape with serious physical injuries, rendering the victim
insane, The penalty to be imposed is reclusion perpetua and/or death (Padilla, Revised Penal Code Anno.Vol. 11, p. 923).
Republic Act 4111 like Rep. Act 2672, is also patterned after the provisions of robbery with homicide (Art. 294, par. 1), on
robbery with rape (Art. 294, par 2.) which imposes the penalty of death on nay of the 3 individual complex crimes,
namely, rape with serious physical injuries resulting in the insanity of the victim (Art. 263 par. 1); attempted or frustrated
rape with homicide (Art. 263, par. 1); attempted or frustrated rape with homicide (Art. 297); and rape with homicide.
See annotations on the distinctions between forcible abduction with rape nad kidnapping with rape (30 SCRA 179),
re People vs. Ablaza, L-27352, Oct. 31, 1969, 30 SCRA 173.
Forcible Abduction with Rape Committed by Two or More Persons on the Same Occasion
In this case under annotation (the celebrated case of movie-actress Maggie de la Riva), the Suprem Court found that there
was committed forcible abduction with rape. With rape as the more serious crime, the penalty to be imposed is the
maximum in accordance with Art. 48 of the Revised Penal Code. With this finding, the extreme penalty of death was
imposed. (See People vs. Crisostomo, 46 Phil. 775; People vs. Lindiane, 50 Phil. 64.
While the Supreme Court found no necessity of considering the aggravating circumstances for the same, as it did not in
nay way alter the nature of the penalty, the Court still considered the proper penalty to be imposed on the accused.
Nevertheless, to clarify the observations made by the Trial Court on the imposition of multiple death penalty, the Supreme
Court made definite rulings on the matter.
In this case five (5) aggravating circumstances were alleged in the information, namely: use of motor vehicle; nighttime
purposely sought to facilitate the commission of the crime and to make discovery difficult; abuse of superior strength; the
means employed or circumstances brought about which added ignominy to the natural effects of the act; and, that the
wrong done in the commission of the crime was deliberately augmented by causing other wrongs not necessary for the
commission.
Effects of the Commission of the Crime Attended by Aggravating Circumstances
The general rule is that once conspiracy is established, all persons who participated in the crime are liable as coprincipals. All those who coordinated in a rape, in an organized band, are guilty for each and all violations ( People vs.
Toledo, 83 Phil. 777). If there was conspiracy, where each of the accused cooperated with one another in abusing the
victim, each is guilty as principal not only of the rape committed by him but also of that committed by his co-defendants
(People vs. Villa, 81 Phil. 193; People vs. Alfaro,91 Phil. 404; People vs. Soriano, L-29057, Oct. 30, 1970, 35 SCRA 633).
Application of Penalties also to Other Participants of the Crime even if They have Not Committed Rape
Where two persons are involved in the commission of a crime, such as robbery, in the course of which one of them rapes a
woman and the other does not make any attempt to prevent the rape, but stands guard while it is going on, the latter
may be held liable for the rape to the extent as the one who actually committed the rape (People vs. Galamiton, L-6302,
August 25, 1954; U.S. vs. Santos, 17 Phil. 618).
In a prosecution for rape and also for robbery with rape, it was held sufficient to sustain conviction of the appellant for
rape that he menaced the victim with a revolver, although he did not himself have sexual intercourse with the victim
(People vs. Alfaro, L-4231, May 28, 1952). The same rule applies with respect to abduction with rape.
It was held that where a girl was forcibly taken by a group of several men, two of whom raped her, the offense was
abduction with rape and the defendant who did not himself have intercourse with the girl was guilty of abduction with
rape by reason of his taking part in the affair and his conduct in assisting the accomplishment of the rape ( People vs.
Ching Suy Siong, L-6174, Feb. 28, 1955).
The rule does not apply where it is shown that he never encouraged or took part directly or indirectly in the acts
complained of, although he was present with the others.
As Many Death Penalties as There are Offenses Committed
The trial court in the case under annotation was of the opinion that since a man has only one life to pay for a wrong, the
ends of justice, would be served and society and the victim would be vindicated just as well, if only one death penalty
were imposed on each of the appellants.
Disagreeing with this opinion, the Supreme Court rules that Art. 70 of the Revised Penal Code applied by the trial court
can only be taken into account in connection with the service of sentence imposed, not in the imposition of the penalty
(People vs. Escares, 55 OG 623).

In holding that only one death penalty should be imposed because a man has only one life, the Supreme Court cited U.S.
vs. Bolivar, 37 Phil. 260, where the accused was found guilty on 2 murders and 1 homicide, and was sentenced to two
death penalties for the murders, and imprisonment for the homicide. The rule is that there are as many crimes committed
as they are charged and proved (People vs. Peralta, L-19060, Oct. 29, 1968). The Supreme Court imposed on each of the 6
accused 3 death penalties for the 3 distinct and separate crimes of murder. This was the result of the act of one
conspirator being attributable to all, in which case the conspirator will be held liable for each of the felonious acts as a
result of the conspiracy, regardless of the nature and severity of the appropriate penalty prescribed by the law.
When Multiple Convictions may Not be Imposed
If there is no allegation under which each accused shall be guilty as principal of one rape, by direct participation, and
another by cooperation, multiple application of penalties for each accused does not apply (U.S. vs. Candelaria, 2 Phil.
104; U.S. vs. Asilo, 4 Phil. 175; U.S. vs. Casaas, 5 Phil. 377; U.S. vs. Perez, 13 Phil. 287; U.S. vs. Cueva, 23 Phil. 553; U.S.
vs. Javier and Caquicla, 31 Phil. 235; U.S. vs. Valdez, 40 Phil. 876; People vs. Castillo, 76 Phil. 839;People vs. Villa,
supra; People vs. Perez @ Kid Perez, 83 Phil. 314; People vs. Toledo, supra; People vs. Margen, 85 Phil. 839; People vs.
Mostoles, 85 Phil. 883; People vs. Alfaro, supra.)
Rationale of the Imposition of Multiple Death Penalties on One Accused
The imposition of multiple death penalties on an accused is not a useless formality and as an exercise in futility, as
contended by some writers. Said argument, according to the Supreme Court, fails to consider the legality of the
imposition of multiple capital penalty; that it fails to distinguish between imposition of penalty and service of sentence;
that it ignores the fact that multiple death sentence could be served simultaneously, and overlooked the practical merits
of the imposition of multiple death penalty.
The imposition of penalties and the service of sentence are two distinct concepts. The imposition of the proper penalty or
penalties is determined by the nature, gravity and number of offenses charged and proved. Service of sentence is
determined by the severity and degree of the penalty or penalties imposed. Moreover, granting that the Chief Executive,
in the exercise of his powers of pardon, deems it proper to commute the multiple death penalty to multiple life
imprisonment, then the practical effect is that the convict has to serve the maximum of 40 years of multiple life
sentence. If only one death penalty is imposed and the death penalty is commuted to life imprisonment, the convict will
have to serve a maximum of only 30 years, corresponding to 3 single life sentences.
In this case the Supreme Court ruled that in view of the existence of conspiracy among the accused and the finding as
regards the number of crimes committed, as well as the presence of aggravating circumstances, four death penalties
should be imposed in the premises.
Similarly, the penalty of death prescribed in the last paragraph of Art. 335 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by Rep.
Acts Nos. 2632 and 4111 and of rape with homicide is imposed regardless of mitigating circumstances, especially in a case
where the crime was committed with aggravating circumstances of nighttime and abuse of superior strength (People vs.
Amit, L-29066, March 25, 1970, 32 SCRA 95).
Escobedo and Miranda Rulings Not Followed in the Philippines
Incidentally, the Court declined to adhere to the principle adhered to by the United States Supreme Court in United States
vs. Messiah, 377 U.S. 201; Escobedo vs. Illinois, 378 U.S. 478 and Miranda vs. Arizona, 384 U.S. 936, invoked by one of the
accused for the admissibility of his extra-judicial confession. In said cases it has been ruled that an extrajudicial
confession, to be admissible, the accused should be represented by counsel during the custodial interrogations.
While it is true that the provisions of the Constitution of the Philippines (Art. III, Sec. 1, par. 17), which reads: In all
criminal prosecutions the accused shall xxx enjoy the right to be heard by himself and counsel x x x, said provision has
been interpreted by the Philippine Supreme Court to mean proceedings before the trial court from arraignment to the
promulgation of the judgment (U.S. vs. Beecham, 23 Phil. 258.)
At any rate, the Court observed that the rulings in theEscobedo and Miranda cases are not yet quite settled in view of the
absence of unanimity in the ruling by the members of the United States Supreme Court in the three above-entitled cases.
JUDGE JORGE COQUIA
Notes.(a) When rape is consummated.
To prove a charge of rape it is not necessary to prove a rupture of the hymen; nor is it necessary to show that there was a
la-ceration of the vagina which usually results from a first time copulation, especially with young girls (People vs.
Lomibao,55 Phil. 616, 620, citing Kenney vs. State ,65 L.R.A. 316; 22 R.C.L. 1178). Nor is complete penetration necessary;
such penetration may indeed be impossible in view of the tender age of the victim, but if there is penetration of the
labia, the offense is consummated (People vs. Eriia, 50 Phil. 998). As stated in one case, Entry of the labia or lips of the
female organ, merely, without rapture of the hymen or laceration of the vagina, is sufficient to warrant conviction
(People vs. Oscar, 48 Phil. 527). But while rupturing of the hymen is not indispensable to a conviction, there must be proof
of some degree of entrance of the male organ within the labia of the pudentum (People vs. Oscar, supra; People vs.
Hernan-dez, 49 Phil. 980). The fact that a sticky substance, or semen, is found in the genital organ of the victim is not
conclusive evidence of penetration (People vs. Eriia, supra).
(b) Plea of guilty and right of the defendant to be present during the trial of capital offenses.
Although presence of the defendant at the trial has been held to be indispensable in prosecutions involving capital

offenses, it has also been ruled that even in such cases, presence of the accused may be denied or dispensed with, for due
process does not assure the right to be present when presence would be useless, or the benefit but a shadow x x x .
(T)he presence of a defendant is a condition of due process to the extent that a fair and just hearing would be thwarted
by his absence, and to that extent only. (Sayder vs. Massa-chusetts, 54 S. Ct. 330, 90 A.L.R. 575, 580-581, cited in
NAVARRO, CRIMINAL PROCEDURE 273n.12274 [1960]).
The presence of the accused after he has pleaded guilty to a capital offense is no longer necessary because a plea of
guilty, amounting as it does to an admission of guilt and of the material facts alleged in the information, removes the
necessity of presenting further evidence and for all intents and purposes the case is deemed tried on the merits, the court
with no alternative but to impose the penalty prescribed by law (People vs. Rapirap, L-11000, Jan. 21, 1958, 54O.G.
6072).
(c) Conspiracy.
See the annotation in 26 SCRA 761-766.
(d) Res gestae.
See People vs. Devaras, L-25165, Feb. 27, 1971, infra, and the notes thereunder.
EXECUTIVE CLEMENCY
People vs Abella
Same; Same; Death penalty may be reduced to reclusion perpetua where there are justifiable reasons therefore,
such as the accused long exposure to inhuman conditions in prison.However, justice should be tempered with mercy.
Considering the circumstances which drove the accused to massacre their fellow prisoners, they deserve clemency. The
death penalty should be commuted to reclusion perpetua. The following observations of this Court in the De los
Santos case have some relevancy to this case: But the members of the Court cannot in conscience concur in the death
penalty imposed, because they find it impossible to ignore the contributory role played by the inhuman conditions then
reigning in the penitentiary, vividly described by the trial judge in his decision. It is evident that the incredible
overcrowding of the prison cells, that taxed facilities beyond measure and the starvation allowance of ten centavos per
meal for each prisoner, must have rubbed raw the nerves and dispositions of the unfortunate inmates, and predisposed
them to all sorts of violence to seize from their owners the meager supplies from outside in order to take out their
miserable existence.
The holding that there is a complex crime in cases like the instant case is similar to the rule in robbery with homicide, a
special complex crime, where the number of persons killed on the occasion or by reason of the robbery does not change
the nature of the crime.
We have already stated that the conviction for multiple murder and multiple frustrated murder, as a complex crime,
qualified by treachery (absorbing abuse of superiority andcuadrilla) and aggravated by quasi-recidivism and evident
premeditation (offset by plea of guilty) and recidivism, as to some accused, as shown in the record, should be affirmed.
The death penalty was properly imposed in conformity with articles 48,160 and 248 of the Revised Penal Code. The
indemnity of six thousand pesos should be increased to twelve thousand pesos for each set of heirs of the fourteen
victims.
However, justice should be tempered with mercy. Considering the circumstances which drove the accused to massacre
their fellow prisoners, they deserve clemency. The death penalty should be commuted to reclusion perpetua.The
following observations of this Court in the De los Santos case have some relevancy to this case:
But the members of the Court cannot in conscience concur in the death penalty imposed, because they find it impossible
to ignore the contributory role played, by the inhuman conditions then reigning in the penitentiary, vividly described by
the trial judge in his decision.
It is evident that the incredible overcrowding of the prison cells, that taxed facilities beyond measure and the starvation
allowance of ten centavos per meal for each prisoner, must have rubbed raw the nerves and dispositions of the
unfortunate inmates, and predisposed them to all sorts of violence to seize from their owners the meager supplies from
outside in order to eke out their miserable existence.
All this led inevitably to the formation of gangs that preyed like wolf packs on the weak, and ultimately to pitiless gang
rivalry for the control of the prisoners, abetted by the inability of the outnumbered guards to enforce discipline, and
which culminated in violent riots. The government cannot evade responsibility for keeping prisoners under such subhuman and Dentesque conditions.
Society must not close its eyes to the fact that if it has the right to exclude from its midst those who attack it, it has no
right at all to confine them under circumstances that strangle all sense of decency, reduce convicts to the level of
animals, and convert a prison term into prolonged torture and slow death. (See People vs. Dahil, L-30271, June 15,
1979.)
Justice Barredo believes that in a case like the instant case, where, since the commission of the multiple murder and
multiple frustrated murder in 1965 or more than fourteen years ago, the accused have been in confinement and in fact
they have been in confinement for other offenses even prior to 1965, the death penalty should be commuted to reclusion

perpetua.

AUTOMATIC REVIEW
PEOPLE VS MATEO
Same; Same; Appeals; If only to ensure utmost circumspection before the penalty of death, reclusion perpetua or life
imprisonment is imposed, the Court now deems it wise and compelling to provide in these cases a review by the Court of
Appeals before the case is elevated to the Supreme Court; A prior determination by the Court of Appeals on particularly
the factual issues would minimize the possibility of an error of judgment .While the Fundamental Law requires a
mandatory review by the Supreme Court of cases where the penalty imposed isreclusion perpetua, life imprisonment, or
death, nowhere, however, has it proscribed an intermediate review. If only to ensure utmost circumspection before the
penalty of death,reclusion perpetua or life imprisonment is imposed, the Court now deems it wise and compelling to
provide in these cases a review by the Court of Appeals before the case is elevated to the Supreme Court. Where life and
liberty are at stake, all possible avenues to determine his guilt or innocence must be accorded an accused, and no care in
the evaluation of the facts can ever be overdone. A prior determination by the Court of Appeals on, particularly, the
factual issues, would minimize the possibility of an error of judgment. If the Court of Appeals should affirm the penalty of
death, reclusion perpetua or life imprisonment, it could then render judgment imposing the corresponding penalty as the
circumstances so warrant, refrain from entering judgment and elevate the entire records of the case to the Supreme
Court for its final disposition.
Same; Same; Same; Allowing an intermediate review by the Court of Appeals before the case is elevated to the Supreme
Court on automatic review is a procedural matter within the rule-making prerogative of the Supreme Court than the
law-making power of Congress.Procedural matters, first and foremost, fall more squarely within the rule-making
prerogative of the Supreme Court than the law-making power of Congress. The rule here announced additionally allowing
an intermediate review by the Court of Appeals, a subordinate appellate court, before the case is elevated to the
Supreme Court on automatic review, is such a procedural matter.
At the conclusion of the trial, the court a quo issued its decision, dated 23 January 2001, finding appellant guilty beyond
reasonable doubt of ten (10) counts of rape
WHEREFORE, the Court finds the accused guilty beyond reasonable doubt of ten (10) counts of rape and is hereby
sentenced to suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua for each count of rape and to indemnify the complainant the sum of
P50,000.00 as actual damages and P50,000.00 as moral damages for each count of rape.
PROBATION LAW
COLINARES v PEOPLE
The Probation Law; The Probation Law, said the Court in Francisco, requires that an accused must not have appealed
his conviction before he can avail himself of probation.The Probation Law, said the Court inFrancisco, requires that an
accused must not have appealed his conviction before he can avail himself of probation. This requirement outlaws the
element of speculation on the part of the accusedto wager on the result of his appealthat when his conviction is finally
affirmed on appeal, the moment of truth well-nigh at hand, and the service of his sentence inevitable, he now applies for
probation as an escape hatch thus rendering nugatory the appellate courts affirmance of his conviction.
Same; Same; The Courts finding that Arnel was guilty not of frustrated homicide but only of attempted homicide is an
original conviction that for the first time imposes on him a probationable penalty .In a real sense, the Courts finding
that Arnel was guilty, not of frustrated homicide, but only of attempted homicide, is an original conviction that for the
first time imposes on him a probationable penalty. Had the RTC done him right from the start, it would have found him
guilty of the correct offense and imposed on him the right penalty of two years and four months maximum. This would
have afforded Arnel the right to apply for probation.
FACTS: Arnel Colinares was found guilty of frustrated homicide and sentenced him tosuffer imprisonment from two years
and four months of
prision correccional , as minimum, tosix years and one day of prision mayor , as maximum. Since the maximum
probationableimprisonment under the law was only up to six years, Arnel did not qualify for probation.
ISSUE: Whether or not he may still apply for probation on remand of the case to thetrial court given a finding that Arnel is
entitled to conviction for a lower offense and a reduced probationable penalty.
HELD: The following relates to select decisions promulgated by the High Court in December 2011 where at least one
Justice felt compelled to express his or her dissent from the decision penned by the ponente.

1.
Probation or Not? (Abad vs. Peralta and Villarama)
In the case of Arnel Colinares vs. People of the Philippines, Arnel Colinares was found guilty by the Regional Trial Court
(RTC) of frustrated homicide and sentenced him to suffer imprisonment from two years and four months
of prision correccional, as minimum, to six years and one day of prision mayor, as maximum. Since the maximum
probationable imprisonment under the law was only up to six years, Arnel did not qualify for probation.
Colinares appealed to the Court of Appeals invoking self-defense and, alternatively, seeking conviction for the lesser crime
of attempted homicide with the consequent reduction of the penalty imposed on him. However, the Court of Appeals
affirmed the decision of the RTC.
Acting on his Petition for Review, the Supreme Court, through Justice Roberto A. Abad, found Colinares guilty of
committing only the lesser crime of attempted homicide with its imposable penalty of imprisonment of four months
of arresto mayor, as minimum, to two years and four months of prisioncorreccional, as maximum. As a result, the
Supreme Court held that since the maximum imposable penalty was now less than six years, Colinares may apply for
probation upon remand of the case to the trial court.
Justice Diosadado M. Peralta took exception to this ruling of the majority, emphasizing that probation is not a right but a
privilege.
According to this dissenter, the Probation Law is clear that no application for probation shall be entertained or granted if
the defendant has perfected an appeal from the judgment of conviction. And since Colinares did exactly thati.e., he
appealed from a judgment of conviction and not merely appealed the imposition of wrong penaltythen he is not entitled
to apply for probation.
Justice Martin S. Villarama, Jr. joined Justice Peralta in dissenting on the point relating to the granting to Colenares of a
right to apply for probation. This dissenter cited the precedent of Francisco vs, Court of Appeals particular;y the
pronouncement therein that [p]robation is not a right of an accused, but rather an act of grace of clemency or immunity
conferredconferred by the court to a seemingly deserving defendant who thereby escapes the extreme rigors of the
penalty imposed by law for the offense of which he stands convicted.
For Justice Villarama, the majority decision carves out an exception not found in and contrary to the purpose of the
probation law. He adds that the the policy of liberality of probation statutes cannot prevail against the categorical
provisions of the law.
Justice Abad defends the majority ruling on this point by (i) clarifying that the High Court is not saying that Colinares has a
right to be granted probation, only that in view of the reduced maximum sentence, he has a right to apply for probation,
with the trial judge still having the discretion to decide whether or not to grant him the privilege of probation, taking into
account the full circumstances of his case, and (ii) explaining that even if it may be the case that under the probation law
the accused who appeals from the judgment of conviction is disqualified from availing himself of the benefits of
probation, in this case, the RTCs judgment has been annulled and this, to say that Colinares is not now entitled to apply
for probation will be to apply the probation law based on the trial courts erroneous, and thereafter annulled, judgment.
From a zoological perspective, Justice Abad concludes:
And, worse, Arnel will now also be made to pay for the trial courts erroneous judgment with the
forfeiture of his right to apply for probation. Ang kabayo ang nagkasala, ang hagupit ay sa kalabaw (the
horse errs, the carabao gets the whip). Where is justice there?
Specifically addressing the views expressed by the dissenters, the majority ruled that the case of Colinares differs from
the Francisco case in that in the Francisco case, the accused was convicted and meted out a probationary penalty. But
instead of applying for probation, the convicted party chose to appeal his conviction, thereby forfeiting the opportunity to
apply for probation.
In this case, Colinares did not have a choice on whether to apply for probation or to appeal since the sentence handed
down by the RTC (which was later annulled by the Court) did not grant to him a right to apply for probation.
In addition, on the dissenting view that allowing Arnel to apply for probation after he appealed from the trial courts
judgment of conviction would not be consistent with the provision of Section 2 that the Probation Law should be
interpreted to provide an opportunity for the reformation of a penitent offender (because an accused like Arnel who
appeals from a judgment convicting him shows no penitence), Justice Abad notes that there would be no issue on this
point if the trial court meted out on Colinares a correct judgment of conviction. For [h]ow can the Court expect him to
feel penitent over a crime, which as the Court now finds, he did not commit? queries the ponente.
(Arnel Colinares vs. People of the Philippines, December 13, 2011, G.R. No. 182748. See dissenting opinions: J.
Peralta, J. Villarama
(authors note: To this author, there is wisdom and therefore merit to the distinction made by the majority. Applying
for probation essentially means that a convicted person accepts his conviction but asks for a degree of clemency. But
horses and carabaos aside, even based only on human gut feel, it seems that there is something just not right in
depriving a person of a right to at least ask for probation if the original conviction that caused his non-entitlement was
found to have been wrong.)
FRANCISCO vs CA
Criminal Procedure; Probation Law; Probation should be availed of at the first opportunity by convicts who are willing to
be reformed and rehabilitated who manifest spontaneity, contrition and remorse .The law expressly requires that an
accused must not have appealed his conviction before he can avail of probation. This outlaws the element of speculation
on the part of the accusedto wager on the result of his appealthat when his conviction is finally affirmed on appeal,

the moment of truth well-nigh at hand, and the service of his sentence inevitable, he now applies for probation as an
escape hatch thus rendering nugatory the appellate courts affirmance of his conviction. Consequently, probation should
be availed of at the first opportunity by convicts who are willing to be reformed and rehabilitated, who manifest
spontaneity, contrition and remorse.
Same; Same; Probation is a mere privilege, not a right.Probation is a mere privilege, not a right. Its benefits cannot
extend to those not expressly included. Probation is not a right of an accused, but rather an act of grace and clemency or
immunity conferred by the state which may be granted by the court to a seemingly deserving defendant who thereby
escapes the extreme rigors of the penalty imposed by law for the offense of which he stands convicted. It is a special
prerogative granted by law to a person or group of persons not enjoyed by others or by all.
Same; Same; The grant of probation rests solely upon the discretion of the court which is to be exercised primarily for
the benefit of organized society, and only incidentally for the benefit of the accused .Accordingly, the grant of probation
rests solely upon the discretion of the court which is to be exercised primarily for the benefit of organized society, and
only incidentally for the benefit of the accused. The Probation Law should not therefore be permitted to divest the state
or its government of any of the latters prerogatives, rights or remedies, unless the intention of the legislature to this end
is clearly expressed, and no person should benefit from the terms of the law who is not clearly within them.
Same; Same; An appeal should not bar the accused from applying for probation if the appeal is taken solely to reduce
the penalty is simply contrary to the clear and express mandate of Sec. 4 of the Probation Law .Therefore, that an
appeal should not bar the accused from applying for probation if the appeal is taken solely to reduce the penalty is simply
contrary to the clear and express mandate of Sec. 4 of the Probation Law, as amended, which opens with a negative
clause, no application for probation shall be entertained or granted if the defendant has perfected the appeal from the
judgment of conviction.
Same; Same; The multiple prison terms are distinct from each other and if none of the terms exceeds the limit set out in
the Probation Law, i.e., not more than six (6) years, then he is entitled to probation, unless he is otherwise specifically
disqualified.At the outset, the penalties imposed by the MeTC were already probationable. Hence, there was no need to
appeal if only to reduce the penalties to within the probationable period. Multiple prison terms imposed against an
accused found guilty of several offenses in one decision are not, and should not be, added up. And, the sum of the
multiple prison terms imposed against an applicant should not be determinative of his eligibility for, nay his
disqualification from, probation. The multiple prison terms are distinct from each other, and if none of the terms exceeds
the limit set out in the Probation Law, i.e., not more than six (6) years, then he is entitled to probation, unless he is
otherwise specifically disqualified. The number of offenses is immaterial as long as all the penalties imposed, taken
separately, are within the probationable period. For, Sec. 9, par. (a), P.D. 968, as amended, uses the word maximum,
not total, when it says that [t]he benefits of this Decree shall not be extended to those x x x x sentenced to serve
a maximum term of imprisonment of more than six years. Evidently, the law does not intend to sum up the penalties
imposed but to take each penalty separately and distinctly with the others.
Same; Same; The basis of the disqualification is principally the gravity of the offense committed and the concomitant
degree of penalty imposed.Fixing the cut-off point at a maximum term of six (6) years imprisonment for probation is
based on the assumption that those sentenced to higher penalties pose too great a risk to society, not just because of
their demonstrated capability for serious wrongdoing but because of the gravity and serious consequences of the offense
they might further commit. The Probation Law, as amended, disqualifies only those who have been convicted of grave
felonies as defined in Art.9 in relation to Art. 25 of The Revised Penal Code, and not necessarily those who have been
convicted of multiple offenses in a single proceeding who are deemed to be less perverse. Hence, the basis of the
disqualification is principally the gravity of the offense committed and the concomitant degree of penalty imposed. Those
sentenced to a maximum term not exceeding six (6) years are not generally considered callous, hard core criminals, and
thus may avail of probation.
Same; Same; The law considers appeal and probation mutually exclusive remedies.In fine, considering that the multiple
prison terms should not be summed up but taken separately as the totality of all the penalties is not the test, petitioner
should have immediately filed an application for probation as he was already qualified after being convicted by the
MeTC, if indeed thereafter he felt humbled, was ready to unconditionally accept the verdict of the court and admit his
liability. Consequently, in appealing the Decision of the MeTC to the RTC, petitioner lost his right to probation. For,
plainly, the law considers appeal and probation mutually exclusive remedies.
Pablo Francisco was accused of multiple grave oral defamation by his employees. The Metropolitan Trial Court of Makati
sentenced him of prision correccional in its minimum period in each crime committed on each date of each case.
Francisco then elevated the case to the RTC in which they sentenced him only of eight straight months for appreciating
mitigating circumstances.
Francisco failed to make an appeal on the RTCs decision making it final. The MTC issued a warrant of arrest, but before
Francisco was to be arrested, he filed an application for probation which the MTC denied. He went to the Court of Appeals
on certiorari which was also denied.
LAGROSA vs PEOPLE

Criminal Law; Probation Law; Appeals; By perfecting their appeal, petitioners ipso facto relinquished the alternative
remedy of availing of the Probation Law.Hence, upon interposing an appeal, more so after asserting their innocence
therein, petitioners should be precluded from seeking probation. By perfecting their appeal, petitionersipso
facto relinquished the alternative remedy of availing of the Probation Law, the purpose of which is simply to prevent
speculation or opportunism on the part of an accused who, although already eligible, does not at once apply for
probation, but did so only after failing in his appeal.
Facts:
Petitioners were found guilty by the RTC, of violation with Sec. 68 of P.D. No. 705, for having found in possession
of forest products without permit. They appealed the decision to the CA, but it affirmed their conviction, with
modifications as to the penalty imposed by the lower court; from 2-8 years to 6 months to 1 year.
Lagrosa
Petitioners applied for probation but was denied by the trial court, and subsequently affirmed by the CA.
Issues:
Whether or not petitioner can still apply for probation?NO
Whether or not Fransisco v. CA applies in this case?YES
Decision:
The fact that petitioners put the merits of their conviction in issue on appeal belies their claim that their appeal
was prompted by what was admittedly an incorrect penalty. Certainly, the protestations of petitioners connote a
profession of guiltlessness, if not complete innocence, and do not simply assail the propriety of the penalties imposed.
For sure, petitioners never manifested that they were appealing only for the purpose of correcting a wrong
penalty to reduce it to within probationable range. Hence, upon interposing an appeal, more so after asserting their
innocence therein, petitioners should be precluded from seeking probation.
By perfecting their appeal, petitioners ipso facto relinquished the alternative remedy of availing of the Probation
Law, the purpose of which is simply to prevent speculation or opportunism on the part of an accused who, although
already eligible, does not at once apply for probation, but did so only after failing in his appeal.
Although it has been suggested that an appeal should not bar the accused from applying for probation if the
appeal is solely to reduce the penalty to within the probationable limit may be equitable, we are not yet prepared to
accept this proposition, especially given the factual circumstances of this case. Had the petitioners appeal from the
decision of the trial court raised the impropriety of the penalty imposed upon them as the sole issue, perhaps this Court
would have been more sympathetic to their plight. Unfortunately, their misrepresentation has led to their own undoing.
ISL
ARGONCILLO vs CA
Same; Same; Penalties; Indeterminate Sentence Law;Since the penalty imposed by law for illegal fishing if explosive is
actually used is imprisonment ranging from twenty (20) years to life imprisonment, and the Indeterminate Sentence Law
provides that if the offense is punished by a law other than the Revised Penal Code, the court shall sentence the accused
to an indeterminate sentence, the maximum term of which shall not exceed the maximum fixed by said law and the
minimum shall not be less than the minimum term prescribed by the same, it is error for the trial court to sentence the
accused to suffer a straight penalty of twenty (20) years imprisonment. The penalty imposed by law for illegal fishing
if explosive is actually used is imprisonment ranging from twenty (20) years to life imprisonment. The Indeterminate
Sentence Law provides that if, as in this case, the offense is punished by a law other than the Revised Penal Code, the
court shall sentence the accused to an indeterminate sentence, the maximum term of which shall not exceed the
maximum fixed by said law and the minimum shall not be less than the minimum term prescribed by the same. The trial
court therefore erred when it sentenced petitioners to suffer a straight penalty of twenty (20) years imprisonment.
In Spouses Jose and Trinidad Bacar vs. Judge Salvador P. de Guzman, Jr. , we held that it was erroneous to impose a
straight penalty of six (6) years imprisonment on the accused for homicide. x x x Accordingly, the proper penalty to be
imposed upon the accused should be an indeterminate penalty which is hereby set at twenty (20) years as minimum to
twenty-five (25) years as maximum.
BACAR vs DEGUZMAN
Criminal Law; Indeterminate Sentence Law, Mandatory; The application of the Indeterminate Sentence Law is mandatory

where imprisonment exceeds one [1] year; Exceptions .However, respondent judge is liable for gross ignorance of the law
for imposing a straight penalty of six (6) years imprisonment on the accused in his modified judgment in the case for
homicide. It is basic law that, as stated above, the application of the Indeterminate Sentence Law is mandatory where
imprisonment exceeds one (1) year, except only in the following cases: a. Offenses punished by death or life
imprisonment; b. Those convicted of treason (Art. 114), conspiracy or proposal to commit treason (Art. 115); c. Those
convicted of misprision of treason (Art. 116), rebellion (Art. 134), sedition (Art. 139), or espionage (Art. 117); d. Those
convicted of piracy (Art. 122); e. Habitual delinquents (Art. 62, par. 5). Recidivists are entitled to an indeterminate
sentence. (People v. Jaramilla, L-28547, Feb. 22, 1974). Offender is not disqualified to avail of the benefits of the law
even if the crime is committed while he is on parole. (People v. Clareon, CA 78 O.G. 6701, Nov. 19, 1982); f. Those who
escaped from confinement or those who evaded sentence; g. Those granted conditional pardon and who violated the
terms of the same (Art. 159). (People v. Corral, 74 Phil. 359); h. Those whose maximum period of imprisonment does not
exceed one year. Where the penalty actually imposed does not exceed one year, the accused cannot avail himself of the
benefits of the law, the application of which is based upon the penalty actually imposed in accordance with law and not
upon that which may be imposed in the discretion of the Court. (People v. Hidalgo, [CA] G.R. No. 00452-CR, Jan. 22,
1962); i. Those who are already serving final judgment upon the approval of the Indeterminate Sentence Law.
Same; Same; The requirement of imposing an indeterminate sentence in all criminal offenses whether punishable by the
Revised Penal Code or by special laws, with definite minimum and maximum terms, as the Court deems proper within
the legal range of the penalty specified by the law must, therefore, be deemed mandatory .The need for specifying the
minimum and maximum periods of the indeterminate sentence is to prevent the unnecessary and excessive deprivation of
liberty and to enhance the economic usefulness of the accused, since he may be exempted from serving the entire
sentence, depending upon his behavior and his physical, mental, and moral record. The requirement of imposing an
indeterminate sentence in all criminal offenses whether punishable by the RPC or by special laws, with definite minimum
and maximum terms, as the Court deems proper within the legal range of the penalty specified by the law must,
therefore, be deemed mandatory.
Same; Same; In crimes punishable under the Revised Penal Code, the maximum term of the indeterminate penalty is
determined in accordance with the rules and provisions of the Code exactly as if the Indeterminate Sentence Law had
never been enacted.In crimes punishable under the Revised Penal Code, the maximum term of the indeterminate
penalty is determined in accordance with the rules and provisions of the Code exactly as if the Indeterminate Sentence
Law had never been enacted. The rules and provisions which must be applied to determine the maximum term of the
indeterminate penalty are those provided in Articles 46, 48, 50 to 57, 61, 62 (except paragraph 5), 64, 65, 68, 69, and 71.
However, the aforesaid rules and provisions in those articles, particularly Arts. 50 to 57, 62, 64 and 65, are not applicable
in fixing the minimum term of the indeterminate penalty. The Court has unqualified discretion to fix the term of the
minimum. The only limitation is that it is within the range of the penalty next lower to that prescribed by the Code for
the offense committed, without regard to its three (3) periods.
On 13 May 1992, after trial on the merits, a Joint Judgment in Criminal Cases Nos. 89-1360 and 89-2878 was rendered by
respondent judge, finding the accused Gerardo Marcial guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crimes charged. The
dispositive part of the decision reads:
WHEREFORE, in view of the foregoing, the Court finds the accused Gerardo Marcial guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the
crime of Homicide in Criminal Case No. 89-1360 and of the offense of Slight Physical Injuries in Criminal Case No. 89-2878.
No modifying circumstances having attended the commission of said crimes, the accused is hereby sentenced to an
indeterminate penalty of from eight (8) years and one (1) day of prision mayor to fourteen (14) years, eight (8) months
and one (1) day of reclusion temporal with respect to Criminal Case No. 89-1360 and to suffer imprisonment of thirty (30)
days of arresto menor as regards Criminal Case No. 89-2878.
The accused is further ordered to indemnify the heirs of the victim Maximo Bacar in the amount of P50,000.00 as moral
damages and to pay the amount of P33,572.00 as actual damages and costs of suit.
SO ORDERED.
Makati, Metro Manila, May 13, 1992.
On 13 August 1992, the accused, Gerardo Marcial, filed a motion for reconsideration of the joint judgment, alleging among
others, that the court erred in imposing the penalties without considering at least two (2) mitigating circumstances,
namely: sufficient provocation or threat on the part of the offended party which immediately preceded the act, and; that
the accused had no intention to commit so grave a wrong as that committed.
On 28 October 1992, herein petitioners filed an opposition to said motion. However, on 13 November 1992, the lower court
granted the motion for reconsideration filed by the accused. After reassessing the facts of the case on the basis of said
motion, respondent judge took into account the mitigating circumstances of want of intent to commit so grave a wrong
and sufficient provocation which immediately preceded the act and accordingly, reduced the penalty in Criminal Case No.
89-1360 to six (6) years of prision mayor, while retaining the penalty in Criminal Case No. 89-2878, i.e., imprisonment of
thirty (30) days of arresto menor.
The lower court justified its order thus:
It appearing upon a re-examination of the evidence on record that the encounter between the group of the accused
Gerardo Marcial and that of the victims Maximo Bacar and Edgar Mabuyo precipitated a free for all fight, that in such a
melee, confusion broke loose and was expected to ensue as a matter of course; that the participation in the melee of
each of the members of the respective groups of the victims and the accused was unexpected and unpremeditated; that

the victim Edgar Mabuyo admitted that prior to the incident, there was heckling which came from him directed to the
group of the accused Gerardo Marcial and that it was he who started it out, that accused Gerardo Marcial confined himself
to giving a single thrust with an icepick on the right arm of Edgar Mabuyo and at the back of Maximo Bacar from which it
can be safely inferred that the accused had no intention to commit so grave a wrong, for otherwise, he would have
persisted in attacking the victims to the point of finishing them off; the Court resolves to accord the accused Gerardo
Marcial the benefit of the mitigating circumstances of want of intent to commit so grave a wrong and sufficient
provocation which immediately preceded the act in accordance with Article 13, paragraphs 3 and 4 of the Revised Penal
Code and hereby reconsiders the Decision dated May 13, 1992 in the foregoing respect.
CHOA vs CHIONGSON
On whether the judge erred in not applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law to the case, we cite Section 2 of R.A. No.
4103 (Indeterminate Sentence Law) which provides in part that This Act shall not apply to x x x those whose maximum
term of imprisonment does not exceed one year, x x x. Since the penalty for perjury under Article 183 of the Revised
Penal Code is arresto mayor in its maximum period which is one (1) month and one (1) day to six (6) months to prision
correccional in its minimum period which is six (6) months and one (1) day to two (2) years and four (4) months, the
respondent Judge was correct in not applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law.
As earlier stated, the foregoing discussion is in no way the final appreciation of the Courts decision which is on appeal,
but is made only to illustrate the utter lack of merit of this charge. Counsel for the complainant must be reprimanded for
assisting in the filing of this complaint.
FACTS:
A complaint was filed against Alfonso Choa for making untruthful statements or falsehoods in his Petition for
Naturalization. The case was docketed as Criminal Case No. 50322 and was assigned to Municipal Trial Court in Cities
(MCTC) of Bacolod City Branch III presided by the respondent Judge Roberto Chiongson. On February 21, 1995, respondent
Judge found the complainant guilty of the crime of perjury and sentenced him to suffer the penalty of six months and one
day of prision correccional and to pay the costs. The complainant moved for a reconsideration of the judgment but was
subsequently denied for lack of merit. He then filed the instant complaint against the respondent Judge and prayed for
the latters removal from office alleging, inter alia, that he was sentenced to suffer a penalty higher than that provided
by law, without applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law.
ISSUE:
Whether or not the respondent Judge erred in not applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law in the crime of perjury.
HELD:
No. Section 2 of R.A. No. 4103 (Indeterminate Sentence Law) substantially provides that the Act shall not apply to those
penalties whose maximum term of imprisonment does not exceed one year. The penalty for perjury under Article 183 of
the Revised Penal Code is arresto mayor in its maximum period which is one (1) month and one (1) day to six (6) months to
prision correccional in its minimum period which is six (6) months and one (1) day to two (2) years and four (4) months.
The complainant was sentenced to suffer the penalty of six months and one day of prision correccional. Thus, the
respondent Judge was correct in not applying the Indeterminate Sentence Law.
LADINO vs GARCIA
Criminal Law; Homicide; Penalties; Indeterminate Sentence Law; The lower court overshot the permissible maximum of
the penalty, by only one day to be sure, but constitutive of error just the same. Preliminarily, it will be noted that the
indeterminate sentence in question has a range of 14 years, 8 months and 1 day, as minimum, to 17 years, 4 months and 1
day, as maximum. In fine, the minimum is within the range of reclusion temporal in its medium period, while the
maximum is reclusion temporal in its maximum period. This latter part, by itself, is erroneous. As a simple matter of law,
the penalty for homicide under Article 249 of the Revised Penal Code is reclusion temporal in its entire extent and, in the
absence of modifying circumstances, the penalty should be imposed in its medium period. This has a duration of 14
years, v. months and 1 day to 17 years and 4 months, and shall be the basis of "an indeterminate sentence the maximum
term of which shall be that which, in view of the attending circumstances, could be properly imposed under the rules of
the said Code." The lower court, accordingly, overshot the permissible maximum of the penalty, by only one day to be sure
but constitutive of error just the same.
Same; Same; Same; Same; Plea Bargaining; The fact that the lesser offense, and its necessarily lower penalty, resulted
from a plea bargaining agreement is of no moment as far as the penalty to be imposed is concerned plea bargaining is
authorized by the present Rules and is in fact required to be considered by the trial court at the pre-trial conference.
The fact that the lesser offense, and its necessarily lower penalty, resulted from a plea bargaining agreement is of no
moment as far as the penalty to be imposed is concerned. Plea bargaining is authorized by the present Rules and is in fact
required to be considered by the trial court at the pre-trial conference. The felony of homicide which must constitute the
basis for the penalty to be imposed having been agreed upon among the requisite parties and approved by the trial court
itself, that downgraded offense and its lower penalty shall control the adjudgment of and any further proceedings before
the court a quo.

Same; Same; Same; Same; To determine whether an indeterminate sentence and not a straight penalty is proper, what is
considered is the penalty actually imposed by the trial court, after considering the attendant circumstances, and not the
imposable penalty; It would be an unduly strained postulate that a sentence arrived at by a court after a valid plea
bargaining should constitute an exception to the Indeterminate Sentence Law in addition to those enumerated in Section
2 thereof.From that undisputable and obvious premise, it follows that the aforecited provisions of Act No. 4103, as
amended, shall necessarily apply. Also on that score, it should be kept in mind that to determine whether an
indeterminate sentence and not a straight penalty is proper, what is considered is the penalty actually imposed by the
trial court, after considering the attendant circumstances, and not the imposable penalty. Corollarily, it would be an
unduly strained postulate that a sentence arrived at by a court after a valid plea bargaining should constitute an
exception to the Indeterminate Sentence Law in addition to those enumerated in Section 2 thereof.
Same; Same; Same; Appeals; The present rule is that an appeal taken by one or more of several accused shall not affect
those who did not appeal, except insofar as the judgment of the appellate court is favorable and applicable to the
latter.Be that as it may, the present rule is that an appeal taken by one or more of several accused shall not affect those
who did not appeal, except insofar as the judgment of the appellate court is favorable and applicable to the latter. Our
pronouncements here with respect to petitioner Felix Ladino, his co-accused, are definitely favorable and applicable to
accused Restituto Amistad. He should not therefore be treated as the odd man out, but should also benefit from the more
beneficial indeterminate sentence that we shall impose. In fact, under similar conditions and on the same ratiocination,
the aforecited Rule has justified the extension of our judgment of acquittal to the co-accused who failed to appeal from
the judgment of the trial court which we subsequently reversed.