Philippine Supreme Court Jurisprudence


Philippine Supreme Court Jurisprudence > Year 1909 > January 1909 Decisions > G.R. No. 4680 January 9, 1909 - ROBERTO MORENO v. AGO CHI

012 Phil 439:




PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

EN BANC

[G.R. No. 4680. January 9, 1909. ]

ROBERTO MORENO, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. AGO CHI (alias Go CAY CHI), Defendant-Appellee.

Roberto Moreno, in his own behalf.

No appearance for Appellee.

SYLLABUS


1. ARREST; RIGHT OF OFFICER TO TAKE POSSESSION OF PROPERTY FOUND ON THE PERSON OF THE DEFENDANT AT THE TIME OF ARREST. — An officer making an arrest may take from the person arrested any money or property found upon his person, which was used in the commission of the crime or was the fruit of the crime or which may furnish the person arrested with the means of committing violence or of escaping, or which may be used as evidence on the trial of the cause. Unless the property is of this description, the officer is not justified in taking possession of the same.

2. PROPERTY TAKEN FROM THE PERSON OF ONE ARRESTED, HOW DISPOSED OF. — Property Consisting of money or other things taken from the person of one arrested, which belongs to him, remains the property of the arrested person and should be returned to him at the close of the trial, when it appears that such property was in no way connected with the crime with which such person was charged, and it is the duty of the court to make an order to that effect.

3. PROPERTY TAKEN FROM ONE ARRESTED, LIENS UPON. — Third persons, creditors, etc., can not acquire any claim or lien upon property taken from the person of one arrested, charged with a crime, which property was in no way connected with the commission of the crime, which he might not have acquired against such property in the actual possession of the defendant. One can not use a criminal process ill this way to aid n civil action for the collection of debts.


D E C I S I O N


JOHNSON, J. :


The facts presented in this case seem to be as follows:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

In the month of May, 1904, a complaint was presented against the defendant charging him with the crime of assassination. He was arrested and tried for said crime in the court of First Instance in the city of Manila. The plaintiff and appellant was appointed by the court to defend the defendant de oficio during the progress of the trial. The defendant at the close of the trial was found guilty of the crime charged and was sentenced with the penalty of death. From that sentence the defendant appealed to the Supreme Court. That court, after a consideration of the case, on the 30th day of April, 1906, modified the finding of the lower court and sentenced the defendant to be imprisoned for a period of twenty;years of reclusion temporal. 1 The defendant was represented in the Supreme Court by another lawyer.

At the time the defendant was arrested under the complaint presented in the Court of First Instance, the officer making the arrest found upon his person about P700, which said officer took possession of and deposited the same with the clerk of the court.

On the 30th day of October, 1906, the plaintiff presented a petition in the Court of First Instance setting up that his services in defending the defendant de oficio in said court were reasonably worth the sum of P600, and prayed the court to make an order directing the clerk to turn over to him (the plaintiff and appellant), of the money which had been taken from the defendant, the sum of P600. No action was taken upon this petition of the plaintiff and appellant until the 3d day of January, 1907, when the plaintiff and appellant filed with the Court of First Instance a copy of an execution which had been issued by Jose M. Quintero, justice of the peace of Manila, from which copy of the writ of execution it appears that said justice had rendered a judgment against the defendant and in favor of the plaintiff, on the 27th day of December, 1906, for the sum of P550 and costs. At the time of this judgment by the justice of the peace it is to be supposed, at least, that the defendant was in Bilibid Prison, serving the sentence of the Supreme Court, and the record does not disclose whether or not he was present during the trial or had received any notice of the action pending against him in said court of the justice of the peace.

On the same day (the 3d day of January, 1907) the plaintiff and appellant presented another petition to the Court of First Instance, praying that the court order the clerk to pay to him, out of the money in his hands, the sum of P559.24, to apply on said judgment obtained before the justice of the peace. On the 4th day of January, 1907, the judge of the said Court of First Instance fixed the 5th day of January for the hearing on the said petition and ordered that the defendant be brought into court for the purpose of being heard upon said motion. The record discloses that the defendant was brought into court on the day fixed for the hearing and then and there stated to the court that he was willing that a portion of the money originally taken from him by the officer making the arrest might be applied upon the execution, but that he wished some of it reserved for his own use.

After hearing the respective parties, the judge of the lower court ordered that the clerk pay to the plaintiff and appellant, out of said money, the sum of P50 and further ordered that the balance should be retained by the clerk for the benefit of the defendant.

From this order of the lower court the plaintiff appealed.

The plaintiff and appellant makes two assignments of error as follows:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

First. That the court erred in arbitrarily fixing the value of the services rendered by him in the trial of said cause at the sum of P50, and in not ordering the clerk to pay to him the sum of P550.

Second. That the lower court erred in not ordering the clerk of the court to pay to the plaintiff or to the sheriff of the said court, a sum equal to the amount mentioned in said execution.

The fact is not denied that the money which the plaintiff and appellant is attempting to secure was taken from the defendant at the time of his arrest and was by such officer turned over to the clerk of the court.

An officer making an arrest may take from the person arrested any money or property found upon his person which was used in the commission of the crime or was the fruit of the crime or which might furnish the prisoner with the means of committing violence or of escaping, or which may be used as evidence in the trial of the cause; but there is very serious doubt whether an officer making an arrest has the right to take from the defendant any property found upon his person, unless for some of the reasons just mentioned. (Rex v. Burgis, 7 Carrington and Payne, English Reports, 488; Houghton v. Bachman, 47 Barber, N. Y., 388; 1st Bishop’s Criminal Procedure, secs. 210-212.)

Unless some of these special reasons exist the officer should not deprive the defendant of the possession of his property. (Rex v. Johnson, 11 Modern Reports, English, 62; Rex v. Jones, 6 Carrington and Payne, 343.)

To deprive the defendant of his money or property under other circumstances than those mentioned above is to deprive him, perhaps, of the lawful means of defense. (Rex v. Jones, supra; Clark s Criminal Procedure, 71; 1st Bishop’s Criminal Procedure, secs. 210-212.)

But what becomes of the property of the person arrested when the officer making the arrest has taken possession of the same and after the termination of the trial it appears conclusively that such property was in no way connected with the commission of the offense for which the defendant was arrested? If the property was in no way connected with the commission of the offense, at the termination of the trial it is the duty of the court to order the officer in possession of the same to return it to the defendant. The custody of the officer of such property in no way deprives the defendant of his right therein and such custody should be considered as the custody of the defendant under these circumstances.

But the question arises, may third persons, creditors for example of the defendant, obtain a lien or claim upon such property while it is in the possession of such officer? We are of the opinion, and so hold, that third persons, creditors, etc., can not acquire any claim or lien upon such property while thus in the hands of the officer, which they might not acquire had the property remained in the custody of the defendant himself. To hold otherwise would lead to unlawful and forcible searches of the person under cover of criminal process as an aid to civil actions for the collection of debts. When it is fully shown that the property so taken was in no way connected with the crime charged, the court should not permit any advantage to be taken of the defendant, by reason of the fact that he had been deprived of his property by the officer and against his will. (Commercial Exchange Bank v. Mc-Leod, 65 Iowa, 665; 54 American Reports, 36;1 Archibald Criminal Pleading and Procedure, 34, 35; Wharton’s Criminal Pleading and Practice, sec. 61.)

It is therefore, the duty of the judge, under facts such as existed in this case, at the close of the trial to order such property returned to the defendant.

The judgment of the lower court is therefore hereby reversed and it is hereby ordered that the cause be remanded to the lower court with direction that an order be issued returning to the defendant the money or property which was taken from his person at the time of his arrest. So ordered.

Arellano, C.J., Torres and Mapa, JJ., concur.

Carson and Tracey, JJ., concur in the result.

Willard, J., dissents.

Endnotes:



1. 6 Phil. Rep., 227.




Back to Home | Back to Main


chanrobles.com



ChanRobles On-Line Bar Review

ChanRobles Internet Bar Review : www.chanroblesbar.com





January-1909 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. No. 4000 January 5, 1909 - ANDRES ELUMBARING v. HERMOGENES ELUMBARING

    012 Phil 384

  • G.R. No. 4001 January 5, 1909 - SILVESTRA LUBRICO v. LEONA ARBADO

    012 Phil 391

  • G.R. No. 4393 January 8, 1909 - LA COMPAÑIA GENERAL DE TABACOS v. CITY OF MANILA

    012 Phil 397

  • G.R. No. 4648 January 8, 1909 - CLAUS SPRECKELS, ET AL. v. D. H. WARD, ET AL.

    012 Phil 414

  • G.R. No. 4762 January 8, 1909 - ALBERTO LAGAHIT v. SIMEON NENGASCA, ET AL.

    012 Phil 423

  • G.R. No. 4841 January 8, 1909 - JAMES F. MACLEOD v. PHILIPPINE PUBLISHING COMPANY

    012 Phil 427

  • G.R. No. 5120 January 8, 1909 - TIMOTEO GONZALEZ v. GEORGE N. WOLFE

    012 Phil 436

  • G.R. No. 4680 January 9, 1909 - ROBERTO MORENO v. AGO CHI

    012 Phil 439

  • G.R. No. 4350 January 11, 1909 - MONICA CASON v. F. W. RICKARDS, ET AL.

    012 Phil 444

  • G.R. No. 4627 January 11, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. EL CHINO QUE-QUENCO

    012 Phil 449

  • G.R. No. 4634 January 11, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. UY-KUE-BENG

    012 Phil 451

  • G.R. No. 4089 January 12, 1909 - ARTURO PELAYO v. MARCELO LAURON, ET AL.

    012 Phil 453

  • G.R. No. 4604 January 12, 1909 - GUTIERREZ HERMANOS v. ANTONIO DE LA RIVA

    012 Phil 458

  • G.R. No. 4849 January 12, 1909 - TIMOTEO CASTRO, ET AL. v. ADOLPH WISLIZENUS, ET AL.

    012 Phil 468

  • G.R. No. 4596 January 13, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. ESTEBAN FORTALEZA

    012 Phil 472

  • G.R. No. 4810 January 13, 1909 - VICTORIA GARCIA v. B. MONTAGUE

    012 Phil 480

  • G.R. No. 4495 January 14, 1909 - TY SUE, ET AL. v. JOHN S. HORD

    012 Phil 485

  • G.R. No. 5050 January 14, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. GO-SIACO

    012 Phil 490

  • G.R. No. 4461 January 16, 1909 - MACARIO SAMSON v. VICENTE SALVILLA, ET AL.

    012 Phil 497

  • G.R. No. 3187 January 19, 1909 - MICHAEL SANDELIZ v. PAZ REYES

    012 Phil 506

  • G.R. No. 3966 January 19, 1909 - JUAN LEANO I, ET AL. v. AGAPITO LEANO

    012 Phil 508

  • G.R. No. 3988 January 19, 1909 - GUILLERMO YACAPIN v. JULIAN JIBERO

    012 Phil 510

  • G.R. No. 4563 January 19, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. GARINO SORIANO, ET AL.

    012 Phil 512

  • G.R. No. 4676 January 19, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. PEDRO TOGONON

    012 Phil 516

  • G.R. No. 4720 January 19, 1909 - CARLOS GSELL v. VALERIANO VELOSO YAP-JUE

    012 Phil 519

  • G.R. No. 4750 January 19, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. RICARDO F. GUTIERREZ

    012 Phil 529

  • G.R. No. 4766 January 19, 1909 - ANG QUIAN CIEG, ET AL. v. JUAN TE CHICO, ET AL.

    012 Phil 533

  • G.R. No. 4915 January 19, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. VY CAN SIU

    012 Phil 540

  • G.R. No. 5049 January 19, 1909 - ALFREDO CHANCO v. ANACLETA MADRILEJOS, ET AL.

    012 Phil 543

  • G.R. No. 4765 January 20, 1909 - ANG SENG QUEN, ET AL. v. JUAN TE CHICO, ET AL.

    012 Phil 547

  • G.R. No. 4291 January 21, 1909 - GUTIERREZ HERMANOS v. CUSTODIO DAUDEN

    012 Phil 551

  • G.R. No. 5101 January 21, 1909 - TEODORO M. BEECH v. A. S. CROSSFIELD, ET AL.

    012 Phil 555

  • G.R. No. 4721 January 23, 1904

    RICARDO v. BASILIO MAJINAY

    012 Phil 559

  • G.R. No. 4813 January 23, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. POTENCIANO SIAMSICO

    012 Phil 571

  • G.R. No. 3714 January 26, 1909 - ISABELO M. MONTANO v. INSULAR GOVERNMENT, ET AL.

    012 Phil 572

  • G.R. No. 3783 January 26, 1909 - DAMASO SANTIAGO, ET AL. v. INSULAR GOVERNMENT

    012 Phil 593

  • G.R. No. 4194 January 26, 1909 - KO BENGCO v. SHERIFF OF THE PROVINCE OF ILOILO, ET AL.

    012 Phil 595

  • G.R. No. 4374 January 26, 1909 - RUFINA ROCES v. FRANCISCO JALANDONI, ET AL.

    012 Phil 599

  • G.R. No. 4710 January 26, 1909 - LEON AGCAOILI v. BENITO ACASIO

    012 Phil 602

  • G.R. No. 4715 January 26, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. EL CHINO CHIA-TUA

    012 Phil 605

  • G.R. No. 4474 January 27, 1909 - BERNABE ALCERA v. SATURNINO NERY

    012 Phil 608

  • G.R. No. 4706 January 27, 1909 - RAMON PAPA v. FRANCISCO MARTINEZ

    012 Phil 613

  • G.R. No. 4816 January 27, 1909 - FRANCISCO Q. GONZALEZ v. CARLOS PALANCA TAN-GUINLAY

    012 Phil 617

  • G.R. No. 4725 January 28, 1909 - UNITED STATES v. JACINTO DE LOS SANTOS, ET AL.

    012 Phil 622

  • G.R. No. 4832 January 28, 1909 - MUÑOZ & CO. v. JOHN S. HORD

    012 Phil 624

  • G.R. No. 3016 January 29, 1909 - ROMAN CATHOLIC APOSTOLIC CHURCH v. MUNICIPALITIES OF CALOOCAN, ET AL.

    012 Phil 639