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Prof. Joselito Guianan Chan's The Labor Code of the Philippines, Annotated Labor Standards & Social Legislation Volume I of a 3-Volume Series 2019 Edition (3rd Revised Edition)
 

 
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UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

 
PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

   
July-1996 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. No. 116600 July 3, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. REYNALDO LANDICHO

  • G.R. No. 119527 July 3, 1996 - EVELYN J. GARCIA v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121910 July 3, 1996 - NATIONAL WATERWORKS AND SEWERAGE AUTHORITY, ET AL. v. NLRC

  • G.R. Nos. 98121-22 July 5, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMEO R. SALAZAR

  • G.R. No. 100629 July 5, 1996 - ENELYN E. PEÑA, ET AL. v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 100699 July 5, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EDGAR C. GUTIERREZ

  • G.R. No. 102377 July 5, 1996 - ALFREDO SAJONAS, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 102998 July 5, 1996 - BA FINANCE CORPORATION v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 105583 July 5, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ELEUTERIO TAMPON

  • G.R. No. 106296 July 5, 1996 - ISABELO T. CRISOSTOMO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 106413 July 5, 1996 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. TACLOBAN CITY ICE PLANT, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 107698 July 5, 1996 - GLORIA Z. GARBO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 107824 July 5, 1996 - SUPERCLEAN SERVICES CORPORATION v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 109173 July 5, 1996 - CITY OF CEBU v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111324 July 5, 1996 - ROMAN CATHOLIC ARCHBISHOP OF MANILA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111549 July 5, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ARTEMIO P. ORTALEZA

  • G.R. Nos. 113178 & 114777 July 5, 1996 - RADIO COMMUNICATIONS OF THE PHIL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 113549 July 5, 1996 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 113827 July 5, 1996 - PHILIPPINE AIRLINES INC. v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 113948 July 5, 1996 - ARMANDO NICOLAS v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 114002 July 5, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ELEUTERIO C. COMPENDIO, JR.

  • G.R. No. 115216 July 5, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DAVID CABILES

  • G.R. No. 115825 July 5, 1996 - FRANKLIN DRILON v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116208 July 5, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ESMAEL SALIDO

  • G.R. No. 116693 July 5, 1996 - PURITA DE LA PEÑA, ET AL. v. PEDRO R. DE LA PEÑA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118203 July 5, 1996 - EMILIO A. SALAZAR, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118231 July 5, 1996 - VICTORIA L. BATIQUIN, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. No. 118284 July 5, 1996 - MAMERTO REFUGIA, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118562 July 5, 1996 - ANGLO-KMU v. SAMANA BAY, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118691 July 5, 1996 - ALEJANDRO BAYOG, ET AL. v. ANTONIO M. NATINO, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 118712 & 118745 July 5, 1996 - LAND BANK OF THE PHIL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118824 July 5, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMEO GARCIA

  • G.R. No. 119069 July 5, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANILO EXCIJA

  • G.R. No. 119845 July 5, 1996 - ANTONIO M. GARCIA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120949 July 5, 1996 - ARACELI RAMOS FONTANILLA v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL.

  • G.R. No. 121180 July 5, 1996 - GERARD A. MOSQUERA v. DELIA H. PANGANIBAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121592 July 5, 1996 - ROLANDO P. DELA TORRE v. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122807 July 5, 1996 - ROGELIO P. MENDIOLA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-91-712 July 9, 1996 - BEN D. MARCES, SR. v. PAUL T. ARCANGEL

  • G.R. No. 88189 July 9, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. TIBURCIO ABALOS

  • G.R. No. 103922 July 9, 1996 - SANTIAGO LAND DEVELOPMENT COMPANY v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 104312 July 9, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARIO CABALLERO

  • G.R. No. 109563 July 9, 1996 - PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 114058 July 10, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ZALDY B. FRANCISCO

  • G.R. No. 74495 July 11, 1996 - DUMEZ COMPANY, ET AL. v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 80437-38 July 11, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROBERTO B. ABORDO

  • G.R. Nos. 94376-77 July 11, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ELMER O. BELGA

  • G.R. No. 103174 July 11, 1996 - AMADO B. TEODORO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 103968 July 11, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DIMSON M. GARDE

  • G.R. No. 104860 July 11, 1996 - CITYTRUST BANKING CORPORATION v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 106418 July 11, 1996 - DANIEL L. BORBON II, ET AL. v. SERVICEWIDE SPECIALISTS, INC., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 109156 July 11, 1996 - STOLT-NIELSEN MARINE SERVICES (PHILS.) INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 110207 July 11, 1996 - FLORENTINO REYES, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116221 July 11, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALEJANDRO G. GABRIS

  • Adm. Matter No. P-93-995 July 12, 1996 - ROBERTO JALBUENA v. EGARDO GELLADA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 88126 July 12, 1996 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 96795 July 12, 1996 - ANTONIO M. CORRAL v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108926 July 12, 1996 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 116128 & 116461 July 12, 1996 - ALLIED BANKING CORP. v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121139 July 12, 1996 - ISIDRO B. GARCIA v. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 88822 July 15, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALEJANDRO M. TUVILLA

  • G.R. No. 117661 July 15, 1996 - DANIEL VILLANUEVA, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 83437-38 July 17, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. WILFREDO R. GUARIN

  • G.R. No. 98458 July 17, 1996 - COCOLAND DEV. CORP. v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 102037 July 17, 1996 - MELANIO IMPERIAL v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 106977 July 17, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. AQUILIO ACABO

  • G.R. Nos. 109396-97 July 17, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMEO S. OARGA

  • G.R. No. 114795 July 17, 1996 - LUCITA Q. GARCES v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116728 July 17, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RODELIO S. CRUZ

  • G.R. No. 120496 July 17, 1996 - FIVE STAR BUS CO., INC., ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. MTJ-96-1088 July 19, 1996 - RODOLFO G. v. HERNANDO C. DOMAGTOY

  • G.R. Nos. 70168-69 July 24, 1996 - RAFAEL T. MOLINA, ET AL. v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 95940 July 24, 1996 - PANTRANCO NORTH EXPRESS, INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108052 July 24, 1996 - PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 110241 July 24, 1996 - ASIA BREWERY, INC. v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 115008-09 July 24, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANIEL C. QUIJADA

  • G.R. No. 120043 July 24, 1996 - AMERICAN HOME ASSURANCE CO., ET AL v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120099 July 24, 1996 - EDUARDO T. RODRIGUEZ v. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120303 July 24, 1996 - FEDERICO GEMINIANO, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET Al.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-96-1336 July 25, 1996 - JOCELYN TALENS-DABON v. HERMIN E. ARCEO

  • G.R. No. 95223 July 26, 1996 - ALLIED BANKING CORPORATION v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 105673 July 26, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ANTONIO MAGANA

  • G.R. Nos. 105690-91 July 26, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. RODOLFO CAGUIOA, SR.

  • G.R. No. 110731 July 26, 1996 - SHOPPERS GAIN SUPERMART, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111127 July 26, 1996 - ENGRACIO FABRE, JR., ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 112175 July 26, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RODOLFO DIAZ

  • G.R. Nos. 114280 & 115224 July 26, 1996 - PHILIPPINE AIRLINES, INC. v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 115683 July 26, 1996 - DELIA MANUEL v. DAVID ALFECHE, JR., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118434 July 26, 1996 - SIXTA C. LIM v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119225 July 26, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RODRIGO G. ABUTIN

  • G.R. No. 119328 July 26, 1996 - PROVIDENT INT’L. RESOURCES INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119673 July 26, 1996 - IGLESIA NI CRISTO (INC.) v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. MTJ-93-783 July 29, 1996 - OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR v. FILOMENO PASCUAL

  • G.R. Nos. 97556 & 101152 July 29, 1996 - DAMASO S. FLORES v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111639 July 29, 1996 - MIDAS TOUCH FOOD CORPORATION v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 114313 July 29, 1996 - MGG MARINE SERVICES, INC., ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. P-95-1148 July 30, 1996 - PEDRO ROQUE, ET AL. v. ZENAIDA GRIMALDO

  • G.R. No. 102557 July 30, 1996 - ALFONSO D. ZAMORA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108028 July 30, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CRISTINA M. HERNANDEZ

  • G.R. No. 116512 July 30, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LEOPOLDO BACANG, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116542 July 30, 1996 - HONGKONG AND SHANGHAI BANKING CORP. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118590 July 30, 1996 - D.M. CONSUNJI, INC. v. RAMON S. ESGUERRA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122241 July 30, 1996 - BOARD OF OPTOMETRY, ET AL. v. ANGEL B COLET, ET. AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 111517-19 July 31, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROGER N. AUSTRIA

  • G.R. No. 112233 July 31, 1996 - COKALIONG SHIPPING LINES v. OMAR U. AMIN

  • G.R. No. 112611 July 31, 1996 - CLARA ATONG VDA. DE PANALIGAN, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116015 July 31, 1996 - GOVERNMENT SERVICE INSURANCE SYSTEM v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119306 July 31, 1996 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANTE BELTRAN

  • G.R. No. 121917 July 31, 1996 - ROBIN CARIÑO PADILLA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122274 July 31, 1996 - SUSAN V. LLENES v. ISAIAS P. DICDICAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122749 July 31, 1996 - ANTONIO A. S. VALDES v. RTC, BRANCH 102, QUEZON CITY, ET AL.

  •  





     
     

    G.R. No. 121180   July 5, 1996 - GERARD A. MOSQUERA v. DELIA H. PANGANIBAN, ET AL.

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    SECOND DIVISION

    [G.R. No. 121180. July 5, 1996.]

    GERARD A. MOSQUERA, Petitioner, v. HON. DELIA H. PANGANIBAN, in her capacity as Presiding Judge of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 64, City of Makati, Metro Manila, HON. FELICIDAD Y. NAVARRO-QUIAMBAO, in her capacity as Presiding Judge of the Metropolitan Trial Court, Branch 65, City of Makati, Metro Manila, and MARK F. JALANDONI, Respondents.


    D E C I S I O N


    MENDOZA, J.:


    This is a petition for review on certiorari of orders dated June 9, 1995 and July 19, 1995 of the Regional Trial Court of Makati (Branch 64) sustaining an order of the Metropolitan Trial Court (Branch 65) for the reinstatement of the information for less serious physical injuries against petitioner Gerard S. Mosquera, which the MeTC had previously allowed to be withdrawn by the prosecution. The reinstatement of the case was made on motion of the offended party.

    The prosecution in the MeTC arose out of a physical encounter between petitioner and private respondent Mark E. Jalandoni within the premises of the Ateneo Law School on June 21, 1993. Petitioner is a graduate of the law school and a member of a fraternity in that school. On the other hand, private respondent was then a third-year student enrolled in the law school. There is considerable dispute how the fight took place. Petitioner’s version was that he had gone to the law school and happened to meet respondent Jalandoni. Because Jalandoni had a previous altercation with another member of petitioner’s fraternity, petitioner tried to talk to Jalandoni, but the latter reacted belligerently and the two had a fight. On the other hand, Jalandoni claimed that petitioner and members of petitioner’s fraternity simply attacked him upon seeing him, for a remark which they claimed he (Jalandoni) had made, which caused a female student to cry. The female student was a friend of one of the fraternity members.

    Be that as it may, as a result of the scuffle, a criminal complaint for frustrated homicide was filed by private respondent against petitioner and five others, namely, Gavino R. Meneses, Jr., Ronald B. Almeida, Alfredo B. Lagamon, Jr., Walter S. Ong, and Jayme A. Sy, Jr., before the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor of Rizal.

    After the usual preliminary investigation, Second Assistant Provincial Prosecutor Herminio T. Ubana, Sr. recommended the filing of an information for less serious physical injuries against petitioner, Gavino R. Meneses Jr., Ronald B. Almeida and Alfredo B. Lagamon, Jr. and the dismissal of the charges against Walter S. Ong and Jayme Sy, Jr. The recommendation was approved by Rizal Provincial Prosecutor Mauro M. Castro on January 10, 1994.

    Accordingly, an information for less serious physical injuries was filed with the Metropolitan Trial Court of Makati, Metro Manila on January 17, 1994 against petitioner and Gavino R. Meneses, Jr., Ronaldo B. Almeida and Alfredo B. Lagamon, Jr. The case, docketed as Criminal Case No. 147366, was assigned to Branch 65 of the MeTC and tried in accordance with the Rule on Summary Procedure. The arraignment was set on July 29, 1994, at 8:30 A.M., but petitioner filed a motion before the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor for the reconsideration of the resolution finding probable cause against him. As his motion was denied by the Provincial Prosecutor, petitioner appealed to the Department of Justice which, on July 20, 1994, directed the Provincial Prosecutor to withdraw the information.

    Accordingly, Second Assistant Prosecutor Benjamin R. Bautista filed a motion to withdraw the information in Criminal Case No. 147366. Private respondent in turn moved for reconsideration of the resolution of the Department of Justice but his motion was denied.

    In its order dated October 13, 1994, 1 the MeTC, presided over by respondent Judge Felicidad Y. Navarro-Quiambao, granted the motion of the prosecution and considered the information against petitioner withdrawn. The MeTC stated in its order:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    Considering the time limit given by the Court to said counsel in the order dated August 15, 1994 within which it pursue the motion for reconsideration [of DOJ Resolution No. 525, Series of 1994] and without said counsel having informed this Court of the outcome of the same, 2 it can safely be concluded that private counsel had lost interest to further prosecute the case. Moreover, Atty. Valdez acting as private counsel in the prosecution of the instant criminal case is under the direct control and supervision of the Trial Fiscal, who by virtue of the Department of Justice resolution was impliedly ordered to desist from prosecuting the case for lack of probable cause. In view thereof, the Court is of the opinion that the motion of the Trial Fiscal should be accorded weight and significance, as it was premised on the findings that the filing of the information in question has no legal basis.

    On motion of private respondent, however, the MeTC reconsidered its order. In its order dated December 29, 1994, the MeTC said: 3

    After carefully weighing the arguments of the parties in support of their respective claims, the Court believes that the weight of the evidence and the jurisprudence on the matter which is now presented for resolution heavily leaned in favor of complainant’s contention. As held in the cases recently decided by the Hon. Supreme Court, once a case is filed in Court, the latter acquires complete jurisdiction over the same without regard to technicalities and personal beliefs.

    That while there is merit in the accused Gerard A. Mosquera’s claim that the institution of a criminal action depends upon the sound discretion of the Fiscal who may or may not file the complaint or information, when in his opinion the evidence is insufficient to establish the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt, the same is true only when the case is not in Court yet because after the case is already forwarded, raffled and assigned to a particular branch the Public Prosecutor loses control over the case.

    It required the parties to appear before it on January 20, 1995, at 9:00 A.M.

    Petitioner moved for reconsideration but his motion was denied. 4 In its order, dated April 24, 1995, the MeTC also set the arraignment of petitioner and Meneses, Jr. on May 19, 1995.

    Petitioner then filed a petition for certiorari and prohibition in the Regional Trial Court of Makati. The case, docketed as Special Civil Case No. 95-718, was assigned to Branch 65, presided over by respondent Judge Delia H. Panganiban.

    Initially the RTC issued a temporary restraining order but, on June 9, 1995, 5 it denied petitioner’s application for preliminary injunction. The RTC upheld the reinstatement of the information against petitioner and the other accused. With its denial of injunction the RTC considered the petition for certiorari and prohibition as having been rendered moot and academic. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration which the RTC denied in its order of July 19, 1995.

    Hence this petition for review on certiorari and for an order:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    a. Reversing the Orders dated 09 June 1995 and 19 July 1995 (cf. Annexes "A" and "B") issued by respondent Judge Panganiban;

    b. Setting aside, as null and void, the Orders dated 29 December 1994 and 24 April 1995 (cf . Annexes "R" and "T") issued by respondent Judge Quiambao;

    c. Making the preliminary injunction final;

    d. Prohibiting respondent Judge Quiambao from trying and hearing Criminal Case No. 147366; and

    e. Declaring the dismissal of Criminal Case No. 147366 as final and executory in accordance with the Order dated 13 October 1994 issued by respondent Judge Quiambao.

    Petitioner’s contention is that, because the direction and control of criminal prosecutions are vested in the public prosecutor, the motion for reconsideration of the order of October 13, 1994, which the private prosecutor filed without the conformity by the public prosecutor, was a nullity and did not prevent the order of dismissal from becoming final. Consequently, the MeTC gravely abused its discretion in afterward reinstating the information.

    Undoubtedly private respondent, as complainant, has an interest in the maintenance of the criminal prosecution. The right of offended parties to appeal an order of the trial court which deprives them of due process has always been recognized, the only limitation being that they cannot appeal any adverse ruling if to do so would place the accused in double jeopardy. 6 We recently had occasion to reiterate this rule in Martinez v. Court of Appeals, 7 where, through the Chief Justice, we held:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    Under Section 2, Rule 122 of the 1988 Rules of Criminal Procedure, the right to appeal from a final judgment or order in a criminal case is granted to "any party," except when the accused is placed thereby in double jeopardy.

    In People v. Guido, [57 Phil. 52 (1932)] this Court ruled that the word "party" must be understood to mean not only the government and the accused, but also other persons who may be affected by the judgment rendered in the criminal proceeding. Thus, the party injured by the crime has been held to have the right to appeal from a resolution of the court which is derogatory to his right to demand civil liability arising from the offense. The right of the offended party to file a special civil action of prohibition and certiorari from an [interlocutory] order rendered in a criminal case was likewise recognized in the cases of Paredes v. Gopengco [29 SCRA 688 (1969)] and People v. Calo, Jr., [186 SCRA 620 (1990)] which held that "offended parties in criminal cases have sufficient interest and personality as "person(s) aggrieved" to file the special civil action of prohibition and certiorari under Sections 1 and 2 of Rule 65 in line with the underlying spirit of the liberal construction of the Rules of Court in order to promote their object. . . .

    Petitioner cites the following statement in Cabral v. Puno 8 in support of his contention that private respondent has no personality to file the motion in question:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    While it is true that the offended party, Silvino San Diego, through the private prosecutor, filed a motion for reconsideration within the reglementary fifteen-day period, such move did not stop the running of the period for appeal [from the order of dismissal of the information]. He did not have the legal personality to appeal or file the motion for reconsideration on his behalf. The prosecution in a criminal case through the private prosecutor is under the direction and control of the Fiscal, and only the motion for reconsideration or appeal filed by the Fiscal could have interrupted the period for appeal.

    The case of Cabral, however, differs materially from this case. In Cabral, the offended party had lost his right to intervene because prior to the filing of the criminal case, he had instituted a civil action arising from the same act subject of the criminal case. On the other hand, in the case at bar, the right of private respondent to intervene in the criminal prosecution is well nigh beyond question as he had neither instituted a separate civil action nor reserved or waived the right to do so. 9

    For the foregoing reasons, we hold that private respondent has the legal personality to file the motion for reconsideration in the trial court.

    Beyond the personality of the private respondent to seek a reconsideration of the order of dismissal of the MeTC, the central issue in this case is whether in ordering the reinstatement of the information, the MeTC acted with grave abuse of discretion.

    The MeTC invoked its authority under Crespo v. Mogul 10 to approve the withdrawal of informations after they have been filed in court, thus:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    [O]nce a complaint or information is filed in Court any disposition of the case as its dismissal or the conviction or acquittal of the accused rests in the sound discretion of the Court. Although the fiscal retains the direction and control of the prosecution of criminal cases even while the case is already in Court he cannot impose his opinion on the trial court. The Court is the best and sole judge on what to do with the case before it. The determination of the case is within its exclusive jurisdiction and competence. A motion to dismiss the case filed by the fiscal should be addressed to the Court who has the option to grant or deny the same. It does not matter if this is done before or after the arraignment of the accused or that the motion was filed after a reinvestigation or upon instruction of the Secretary of Justice who reviewed the records of the investigation.

    Petitioner argues that by its order of October 13, 1994, the MeTC already exercised its authority under the Mogul doctrine to grant or deny the public prosecutor’s motion to withdraw the information and was thereafter precluded from changing its mind in absence of a motion for reconsideration filed by the public prosecutor.

    This argument is untenable. The court could have denied the public prosecutor’s motion for the withdrawal of the information against petitioner, and there would have been no question of its power to do so. If it could do that, so could it reconsider what it had ordered. Every court has the power and indeed the duty to review and amend or reverse its findings and conclusions when its attention is timely called to any error or defect therein. 11 In this case, the motion for reconsideration was timely filed by the private prosecutor who, as already discussed, has the legal personality to do so.

    Indeed, the MeTC must have realized that it had surrendered its exclusive prerogative regarding the withdrawal of informations by accepting public prosecutor’s say-so that the prosecution had no basis to prosecute petitioner. 12 Its order of October 13, 1994 was based mainly on its notion that "the motion of the Trial Fiscal should be accorded weight and significance as it was premised on the findings [of the Department of Justice] that the filing of the information in question has no legal basis."cralaw virtua1aw library

    This certainly was not the exercise of discretion. As we said in Martinez, "whether to approve or disapprove the stand taken by the prosecution is not the exercise of discretion required in cases like this [under the Mogul ruling] . . . What was imperatively required was the trial judge’s own assessment of such evidence, it not being sufficient for the valid and proper exercise of judicial discretion merely to accept the prosecution’s word for its supposed insufficiency." 13

    Unfortunately, just as in allowing the withdrawal of the information by the public prosecutor, the MeTC did not make an independent evaluation of the evidence, neither did it do so in granting the private prosecutor’s motion for reconsideration. In its order dated December 29, 1994, the MeTC simply stated that it was reinstating the case against petitioner because" [a]fter carefully weighing the arguments of the parties in support of their respective claims, the Court believes that the weight of the evidence and the jurisprudence on the matter which is now presented for resolution heavily leaned in favor of complainant’s contention" and that after a case has already been "forwarded, raffled, and assigned to a particular branch, the Public Prosecutor loses control over the case." The order contains no evaluation of the parties’ evidence for the purpose of determining whether there was probable cause to proceed against petitioner. The statement that the "weight of evidence . . . lean[s] heavily in favor of complainant’s [Jalandoni’s] contention" is nothing but the statement of a conclusion.

    Nor could the MeTC rest its judgment solely on its authority under the Mogul doctrine to have the last word on whether an information should be withdrawn. The question in this case is not so much whether the MeTC has the authority to grant or not to grant the public prosecutor’s motion to withdraw the information — it does — but whether in the exercise of that discretion or authority it acted justly and fairly. In this case, the MeTC did not have good reason stated in its order for the reinstatement of the information against petitioner; just as it did not have good reason for granting the withdrawal of the information.

    The matter should therefore be remanded to the MeTC so that it can make an independent evaluation of the evidence of the prosecution and on that basis decide whether to grant or not to grant the withdrawal of the information against petitioner.

    WHEREFORE, the orders dated June 9, 1995 and July 19, 1995 of the Regional Trial Court are REVERSED and the orders of October 13, 1994 and December 29, 1994 of the Metropolitan Trial Court of Makati, Branch 65 are SET ASIDE and the Metropolitan Trial Court of Makati is ORDERED within ten (10) days from receipt of this decision to RESOLVE the public prosecutor’s motion to withdraw the information in Criminal Case No. 147366, stating in its order clearly the reason or reasons for its resolution, after due consideration of the evidence of the parties.

    SO ORDERED.

    Regalado, Romero, Puno and Torres, Jr., JJ., concur.

    Endnotes:



    1. Petition, Annex M, Rollo, p. 223.

    2. Apparently, unknown to the court, the Department of Justice had denied private respondent’s motion for reconsideration on October 4, 1994.

    3. Petition, Annex. R, Rollo, pp. 278-279.

    4. Petition, Annex T, Rollo, p. 295.

    5. Petition, Annex A, Rollo, pp. 38-39.

    6. Rule 122, 22. Thus an offended party has been held to have the right to (1) file a motion for reconsideration of a decision by the Supreme Court enjoining criminal prosecution (Guingona, Jr. v. City Fiscal of Manila, 137 SCRA 597 (1985)), or a special civil action for certiorari to question the validity of a judgment of acquittal (People v. Santiago, 174 SCRA 143 (1989)) or of an order granting the petition for bail (People v. Calo, Jr., 186 SCRA 620 (1990); People v. Dacudao, 170 SCRA 489 (1989)), or (2) furnish the trial court information material to the motion to dismiss filed by the fiscal (United States v. Barredo, 32 Phil. 442 (1915)), or (3) comment on a petition filed by the accused questioning the trial court’s order denying a motion to withdraw information (Dungog v. Court of Appeals, 159 SCRA 145 (1988)).

    7. 237 SCRA 575, 581-82 (1994).

    8. 70 SCRA 606, 610 (1976).

    9. Rule 110, 16 provides: "Intervention of the offended party in criminal action. — Unless the offended party has waived the civil action or expressly reserved the right to institute it separately from the criminal action, and subject to the provision of Section 5 hereof, he may intervene by counsel in the prosecution of the offense."cralaw virtua1aw library

    10. 151 SCRA 462, 471 (1987).

    11. See Balayon Jr. v. Ocampo, 218 SCRA 13 (1993) citing Luzon Brokerage Corporation v. Court of Appeals, 176 SCRA 483 (1989).

    12. Dee v. Court of Appeals, 238 SCRA 254 (1994); Martinez v. Court of Appeals, supra.

    13. 237 SCRA at 585. Accord, Roberts v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 113930, March 5, 1996.

    G.R. No. 121180   July 5, 1996 - GERARD A. MOSQUERA v. DELIA H. PANGANIBAN, ET AL.


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