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The civil action may be based under Art 32 NCC and the constitutionalprovisions on rights against privation of property

without due process of law and without just compensation.


De Los Santos vs. IAC

Emiliano R. De Los Santos, Spouses Norma A. Padilla and Isidoro L. Padilla and
the Heirs of Francisco Dayrit, petitioners, vs. The Hon. Intermediate Appellate
Court, Hon. Judge Cicerro C. Jurado and Edilberto Cadiente, respondents.

Third Division

Romero, June 2, 1993

Topic: Sovereignty - Suits not against the State - Expropriation

Facts:

Petitioners are co-owners of a parcel of land in Barrio Wawa, Binangonan,


Rizal (area: 19,061 sq m)

Petitioners allege that in October 1981, without their knowledge or


consent, Lorenzo Cadiente, a private contractor and the Provincial
Engineer of Rizal constructed a road 9 meters wide and 128.70 meters
long occupying 1,165 sq m of their parcel of land

Aside from the road, an artificial creek 23.20 meters wide and 128.69
meters long was also constructed, occupying an area of 2,906 sq m of their
property

Constructed in a zigzag manner, the creak meandered through their


property

Petitioners files two cases which were later consolidated

Solicitor General filed a motion to dismiss both cases several grounds,


including that both cases were in reality suits against the state which could
not be maintained without the State's consent

The lower court dismissed the petition; petitioners elevated the case to the
SC on certiorari, which referred the cases back to the IAC

IAC ruled: the two actions cannot be maintained because they are suits
against the State without consent

Case was again elevated to the SC on certiorari

Issue:
Whether or not the consolidated actions, as suits against the State, can be
maintained

Holding:

Yes.

Ratio:

The doctrine of governmental immunity from suit cannot serve as an


instrument for perpetrating an injustice on a citizen; it cannot serve as
defense by the State against an action for payment by the owner

The respondent government officials executed a shortcut in appropriating


petitioners' property for public use; no expropriation proceedings had
been undertaken prior to the construction of the projects

Damages may be awarded the petitioners in the form of legal interest on the
price of the land to be reckoned from the time of the unlawful taking

Petition granted. Civil Cases remanded to the lower court for trial on the merits after the
Republic of the Philippines shall have been impleaded as defendant in both cases.