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REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES REGIONAL TRIAL COURT SEVENTH JUDICIAL REGION BRANCH _____ CEBU CITY REPUBLIC OF THE

PHILIPPINES, represented by the Regional Executive Director of the DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES (DENR), Plaintiff, ________ and GAUDENCIA BANLASAN AND THE REGISTER OF DEEDS OF CEBU, Defendants. x-----------------------------x - versus -

CIVIL

CASE

NO.

For: Annulment of Title Reversion

COMPLAINT
PLAINTIFF, Republic of the Philippines, represented by the Regional Executive Director, DENR-Region VII, Cebu City, through counsel, to this Honorable Court, most respectfully alleges:

COMPLAINT Republic v. Gaudencia Banlasan, et. al. Page 2 of 8 x---------------------------x

1.

Plaintiff is a sovereign entity, with capacity to sue

and in whom absolute ownership of all lands of the public domain is vested in the concept of jura regalia (Heirs of Pendatun v. Director of Lands, 59 Phil. 600 [1934]). It may be served with notices and other judicial processes through its counsel, the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG), with office address at 134 Amorsolo Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City, Metro Manila.

2.

Defendant Gaudencia Banlasan is of legal age and a

resident of Basak, Sibonga, Cebu with capacity to sue and be sued and may be served with summons and other court processes.

3.

Defendant Register of Deeds of Cebu is impleaded

in his official capacity and may be served with summons and other court processes at his office in the Capitol Building, Cebu City.

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4.

On the basis of Free Patent Application (FPA) No. (VI-

1)-4835-A of defendant GAUDENCIA BANLASAN for Lot No. 7613, Case 8, Cad. 315-D, covering an area of FOUR THOUSAND FOUR HUNDRED NINETY SIX (4,496) square meters, situated at Basak, Sibonga, Cebu (Annex A), and upon her representation that she is entitled to a free patent grant over the aforementioned lot, the then Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources approved said application, entered an order for issuance of patent and ultimately, issued Free Patent (FP) No. 423906 (Annex B). 5. The aforesaid patent was transmitted to the

Register of Deeds of Cebu City for registration and issuance of certificate of title pursuant to Section 122 of Act 4961 (now P.D. 1529)2 and accordingly, Original Certificate of Title (OCT) No. O-5446 (Annex C) was issued in the name of Gaudencia Banlasan.

6.

Upon

subsequent

investigation

and

verification

conducted by the Department of Environment and Natural


1 2 An Act to Provide for the Adjudication and Registration of Titles to Lands in the Philippine Islands. Property Registration Decree.

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Resources, it was found out that the land covered by OCT No. O-5446 is within Timberland/Forest Zone under Project 50-D, per L.C. Map No. 2961, with Certification at the back dated 19 January 2000. The DENR Investigation and Verification

Report is attached as (Annex D).

7.

Considering that the land falls within a forest land,

which is property of public domain, the same cannot be the subject of disposition or registration (Vano v. Government of P.I., 41 Phil. 161 [1920], Republic v. Intermediate Appellate Court, 186 SCRA 88 [1990]). Needless to say, such parcel of land remains and forms part of the public domain which should be reverted to plaintiff, Republic of the Philippines. PRAYER

WHEREFORE, in light of the foregoing, it is most respectfully prayed to this Honorable Court that after due notice and hearing, judgment be rendered in favor of the plaintiff:

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(i)

Declaring FP No. 423906 and OCT No. O-5446 in the

name of Gaudencia Banlasan and all derivative titles emanating therefrom, if any, null and void and of no legal effect;

(ii)

Directing

defendant

Gaudencia

Banlasan

to

surrender the owners copy of the Original Certificate of Title (OCT) No. O-5446 to the Register of Deeds of Cebu City;

(iii) Directing defendant Register of Deeds to cancel OCT No. O-5446 and all its derivative titles, if any;

(iv) Ordering the reversion of the land covered by said cancelled titles to the land of the public domain; and,

(v) Enjoining defendant Gaudencia Banlasan to refrain from exercising/asserting acts of possession or ownership in the premises.

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Plaintiff further prays for such other reliefs and remedies as may be deemed just and equitable under the premises.

Makati City for Cebu City, 26 August 2011.

signatories next page OFFICE OF THE SOLICITOR GENERAL 134 Amorsolo St., Legaspi Village 1229 Makati City E-mail: www.osg.gov.ph Tel. No. 8186301 (loc. 225 or 228)

JOSE ANSELMO I. CADIZ

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Solicitor General Roll No. 35072 IBP Lifetime No. 02819 MCLE Exemption No. III-000920

ROMAN G. DEL ROSARIO Assistant Solicitor General Roll No. 31603 IBP Lifetime No. 01862 MCLE Exemption No. III-000962

JOSE V. COVARRUBIAS III Associate Solicitor Roll No. 53587 IBP No. 862962, 4-7-11 MCLE Compliance No. III-0000883

VERIFICATION/CERTIFICATION I, LEONARDO R. SIBBALUCA, of legal age, Filipino, after having been duly sworn in accordance with law, hereby depose and state that: 1. I am the Regional Executive Director of DENR-VII. As such, I have been authorized to initiate the filing of the present complaint for and in behalf of the DENR. 2. I have caused the preparation and filing of the

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foregoing complaint and have read and understood all the allegations contained therein, and the same are true and correct of my own personal knowledge based on authentic record; 3. I/Plaintiff have not commenced any action or filed any claim involving the same issues in any court, tribunal or quasi-judicial agency; 4. If I/Plaintiff should thereafter learn that a similar action has been filed or is pending, I shall report that fact to this Honorable Court within five (5) days from knowledge thereof. IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have set my hand and affixed my signature this _____ day of _______________, 2011 in _______________.

LEONARDO R. SIBBALUCA Regional Executive Director DENR Region VII

SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN to before me this _____ day of ____________________, 2011 in ____________________ with affiant exhibiting to me his ____________________.

Notary Public