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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
 

   
September-1997 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. No. 112955 September 1, 1997 - ABOITIZ SHIPPING EMPLOYEES ASSN. v. CRESENCIANO TRAJANO, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 118620-21 September 1, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NARITO DADLES

  • G.R. No. 117472 September 2, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LEO ECHEGARAY

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-96-1355 September 4, 1997 - RENE UY GOLANGCO v. CANDIDO P. VILLANUEVA

  • G.R. No. 121098 September 4, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROGELIO ANTIDO

  • G.R. No. 121778 September 4, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. AARON BIONAT

  • Adm. Matter No. MTJ-93-759 September 5, 1997 - EMILIANO VELUZ v. RAUL V. BABARAN

  • Adm. Matter No. MTJ-96-1111 September 5, 1997 - VIRGILIO CAÑETE v. MARCELO B. RABOSA, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-96-1338 September 5, 1997 - FERNANDO S. DIZON v. LILIA C. LOPEZ

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-97-1388 September 5, 1997 - ELEAZAR B. GASPAR v. WILLIAM H. BAYHON

  • G.R. No. 95252 September 5, 1997 - LA VISTA ASSN., INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 97961 September 5, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JIMMY TALISIC

  • G.R. No. 104692 September 5, 1997 - KATIPUNAN NG MGA MANGGAGAWA SA DAUNGAN v. PURA FERRER-CALLEJA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 106214 September 5, 1997 - TERESITA VILLALUZ, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 106858 September 5, 1997 - PHIL. BANK OF COMMUNICATIONS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 109250 September 5, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARLON LACERNA

  • G.R. No. 109583 September 5, 1997 - TRANS ACTION OVERSEAS CORP. v. SECRETARY OF LABOR, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 109977 September 5, 1997 - UNIVERSITY OF PANGASINAN v. MA. NIEVES R. CONFESOR, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 110062 September 5, 1997 - AQUINAS SCHOOL v. BIENVENIDO S. MAGNAYE, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111149 September 5, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RENATO BAUTISTA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111935 September 5, 1997 - HILARIO T. DE LOS SANTOS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 112630 September 5, 1997 - CORAZON JAMER, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 113216 September 5, 1997 - RHODORA M. LEDESMA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 113388 September 5, 1997 - ANGELITA MANZANO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 115158 September 5, 1997 - EMILIA M. URACA, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116781 September 5, 1997 - TOMAS LAO CONSTRUCTION, ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117733 September 5, 1997 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. MARTIN S. VILLARAMA, JR., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118002 September 5, 1997 - ULDARICO ESCOTO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118075 September 5, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EMILIANO CATANTAN

  • G.R. No. 118141 September 5, 1997 - LEONILA GARCIA-RUEDA v. WILFRED L. PASCASIO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119010 September 5, 1997 - PAZ T. BERNARDO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120138 September 5, 1997 - MANUEL A. TORRES, JR., ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120363 September 5, 1997 - CECILLEVILLE REALTY AND SERVICE CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120790 September 5, 1997 - SPECIAL POLICE AND WATCHMEN ASSN., ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122656 September 5, 1997 - SYLVIA S. TY v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126594 September 5, 1997 - IMELDA R. MARCOS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Matter No. RTJ-97-1387 September 10, 1997 - FLAVIANO B. CORTES v. SEGUNDO B. CATRAL

  • G.R. No. 122872 September 10, 1997 - PENDATUN SALIH v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116473 September 12, 1997 - WILFREDO R. CAMUA v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121993 September 12, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NELSON AGUNIAS

  • G.R. No. 123056 September 12, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JUVY MARIBAO

  • G.R. No. 123915 September 12, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RENATO REBOLTIADO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126977 September 12, 1997 - ELVIRA B. NAZARENO v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 98137 September 15, 1997 - PHILIPPINE RABBIT BUS LINES, INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108294 September 15, 1997 - ANDRES RAMOS, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 120158-59 September 15, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ELESEO CHENG

  • G.R. No. 124135 September 15, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANNY QUELIZA

  • G.R. No. 113025 September 16, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EFREN SALVADOR, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 115338-39 September 16, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LANIE ORTIZ-MIYAKE

  • G.R. No. 116798 September 16, 1997 - DENIA C. BUTA v. MANUEL M. RELAMPAGOS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123782 September 16, 1997 - CALTEX REFINERY EMPLOYEES ASSN. v. JOSE S. BRILLANTES, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 118866-68 September 17, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RODOLFO DE LA CRUZ

  • Adm. Case No. 3961 September 18, 1997 - SALUD IMSON-SOUWEHA v. TEOPISTO A. RONDEZ

  • Adm. Matter No. MTJ-96-1077 September 18, 1997 - OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR v. OLIVER T. VILLANUEVA

  • Adm. Matter No. P-97-1254 September 18, 1997 - ANONYMOUS v. ADELA A. GEVEROLA

  • G.R. No. 117576 September 18, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ERNESTO SANTIAGO JAMIRO

  • G.R. No. 117890 September 18, 1997 - PISON-ARCEO AGRICULTURAL AND DEV. CORP. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126230 September 18, 1997 - CARMEN ARRIETA v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126625 September 18, 1997 - KANLAON CONSTRUCTION ENTERPRISES CO., INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116595 September 23, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JESUS PALOMA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126158 September 23, 1997 - PHILIPPINE BANK OF COMMUNICATIONS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • Adm. Case No. 3773 September 24, 1997 - ANGELITA C. ORCINO v. JOSUE GASPAR

  • Adm. Case No. 4634 September 24, 1997 - JESUS CABARRUS, JR. v. JOSE ANTONIO S. BERNAS

  • G.R. No. 101747 September 24, 1997 - PERFECTA QUINTANILLA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116593 September 24, 1997 - PULP AND PAPER, INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118130 September 24, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JURY MAGDAMIT, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120391 September 24, 1997 - SIMPLICIO AMPER v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 117038 September 25, 1997 - PAL, INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 124033 September 25, 1997 - ANTONIO T. KHO v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 124933 September 25, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JURRY ANDAL, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 105997 September 26, 1997 - MARIO BELLA, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 112702 & 113613 September 26, 1997 - NATIONAL POWER CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119165 September 26, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. SERGIO BETONIO

  • G.R. No. 120507 September 26, 1997 - PAL, INC. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 120550 September 26, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ANTOLIN HAYAHAY, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129913 September 26, 1997 - DINDO C. RIOS v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 83588 September 29, 1997 - ADORACION C. PANGILINAN, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 107487 & 107902 September 29, 1997 - MANILA BANKING CORP., ET AL. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 108947 September 29, 1997 - ROLANDO SANCHEZ, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 112074 September 29, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARIO GOMEZ

  • G.R. No. 117451 September 29, 1997 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ANTON BURGOS

  • G.R. No. 125183 September 29, 1997 - MUNICIPALITY OF SAN JUAN v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  •  





     
     

    G.R. No. 129913   September 26, 1997 - DINDO C. RIOS v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    THIRD DIVISION

    [G.R. No. 129913. September 26, 1997.]

    DINDO C. RIOS, Petitioner, v. THE SECOND DIVISION OF THE SANDIGANBAYAN, THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT, and THE PROVINCIAL GOVERNOR OF ROMBLON, Respondents.


    D E C I S I O N


    ROMERO, J.:


    This is a petition for certiorari to set aside the resolution of the Sandiganbayan, dated March 24, 1997, granting the motion of the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) to suspend petitioner Dindo C. Rios pendente lite, and its resolution dated June 25, 1997 denying his Motion for Reconsideration.

    On March 6, 1996, an information was filed against petitioner who is the incumbent Mayor of the Municipality of San Fernando, Romblon for alleged unauthorized disposition of confiscated lumber, in violation of Republic Act No. 3019, otherwise known as Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. The information alleged:chanrobles virtuallawlibrary

    "That on or about May 16, 1994, in San Fernando, Romblon, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above named accused, a public officer, . . . while in the performance and taking advantage of his official functions, and with evident bad faith, did then and there willfully, unlawfully and criminally cause the disposition of confiscated, assorted and sawn tanguile lumber consisting of 1,319 pieces without proper authority therefor, thus, causing undue injury to the Government."cralaw virtua1aw library

    Before his arraignment, petitioner filed a "Motion to Quash Information and Recall Warrant of Arrest," dated August 4, 1996, on the ground that the information was invalid as there was no probable cause to hold him liable for violation of Section 3(e), R.A. No. 3019. 1

    On September 16, 1996, the OSP filed a "Motion to Suspend Accused (herein petitioner) Pendente Lite," to which petitioner filed an "Opposition," reiterating the same ground stated in his motion to quash.

    The Sandiganbayan overruled the argument in its resolution of October 14, 1996. Thereupon, petitioner filed a verified petition with this Court which was docketed as G.R. No. 126771. Among the issues raised was the alleged invalidity of the information. The Court resolved to deny this petition on December 4, 1996 on the ground that the Sandiganbayan committed no grave abuse of discretion in rendering the questioned judgment.

    When petitioner was arraigned on January 20, 1997, he entered a plea of "not guilty" no longer questioning the validity of the information against him.

    On March 24, 1997, the Sandiganbayan granted the OSP’s motion to suspend petitioner in an order which provides in part:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph

    "WHEREFORE, Accused Dindo C. Rios is ordered suspended from his position as Mayor of the Municipality of San Fernando, Romblon and from any other public position he may be holding for a period of ninety (90) days counted from receipt of this Resolution. The Honorable Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government, Quezon City, and the Provincial Governor of Romblon, Romblon are ordered furnished with copies of this Resolution so that they may implement the same and report on their actions thereon.

    SO ORDERED."cralaw virtua1aw library

    Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration which was subsequently denied in a resolution dated June 25, 1997. Hence, this petition.

    In support of his petition, petitioner posits the following arguments:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph

    "I. THE SANDIGANBAYAN COMMITTED A GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION WHEN IT RULED THAT THE FACTS CHARGED IN THE INFORMATION CONSTITUTE A VIOLATION OF REPUBLIC ACT 3019.

    II. THE SANDIGANBAYAN COMMITTED A GRAVE ABUSE OF DISCRETION WHEN IT PROVIDED FOR SUSPENSION OF NINETY (90) DAYS IN CLEAR DISREGARD OF THE PROVISION OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT CODE."cralaw virtua1aw library

    The first argument propounded by petitioner has already been passed upon by this Court when it held that the act of disposing of confiscated lumber without prior authority from DENR and the Sangguniang Bayan constituted a violation of Sec. 3(e) of R.A. No. 3019. 2 Therefore, there is probable cause to hold petitioner liable for such act, for which the information was validly filed. Although any further discussion of this issue would be unnecessary, the Sandiganbayan’s ruling is herein reiterated as a reminder to public officials of their crucial role in society and the trust lodged upon them by the people.

    The act complained of in this case is "the disposition (by petitioner) of confiscated, assorted and sawn lumber consisting of 1,319 pieces without proper authority therefor, thus causing undue injury to the Government."cralaw virtua1aw library

    Petitioner maintains that the mere fact that he acted beyond the scope of his authority by selling the confiscated lumber without the prior approval of the DENR through its Community Environment and Natural Resources Office and without a resolution from the Sangguniang Bayan, does not constitute a violation of Section 3(e) of R.A. No. 3019. What renders the disposition of lumber contrary to law is any resulting "undue injury" which, however, is absent in this case because the proceeds of the disposition went to the coffers of the Municipal Government.

    The Sandiganbayan, however, asserted:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph

    "First, any act or omission that is not in consonance with the prescribed norms of conduct inflicts injury to the Government, for the reason that it is a disturbance of law and order. This is more so when, as in this case, the alleged offender is the highest officer in the Municipal Government, because he sets a reprehensible example to his constituents.

    Second, the assertion that no undue injury was caused because the proceeds of the disposition of confiscated lumber went to the Municipal Government gratuitously assumes that the price at which the lumber was disposed of was the reasonable market value thereof and that all the proceeds were paid to the local government. The assertion is further based on the wrong assumption that the lumber belonged to the municipality of which the accused was mayor. It was the National Government, as distinguished to (sic) local governments, that owned it, (Sec. 2(a), RA 3019) there being no evidence that the National Government had disposed of the lumber in any manner." 3

    We cannot agree more with the Sandiganbayan. This Court would like to stress adherence to the doctrine that public office is a public trust. Public officers and employees must at all times be accountable to the people, serve them with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty and efficiency, act with patriotism and justice, and lead modest lives. Public servants must bear in mind this constitutional mandate at all times to guide them in their actions during their entire tenure in the government service. 4 "The good of the service and the degree of morality which every official and employee in the public service must observe, if respect and confidence are to be maintained by the Government in the enforcement of the law, demand that no untoward conduct on his part, affecting morality, integrity and efficiency while holding office should be left without proper and commensurate sanction, all attendant circumstances taken into account." 5

    The suspension pendente lite meted out by the Sandiganbayan is, without doubt, a proper and commensurate sanction against petitioner. Having ruled that the information filed against petitioner is valid, there can be no impediment to the application of Section 13 of R.A. No. 3019 which states, inter alia:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph

    "Sec. 13. Suspension and loss of benefits. — Any incumbent public officer against whom any criminal prosecution under a valid information under this Act or under Title 7, Book II of the Revised Penal Code or for any offense involving fraud upon government or public funds or property, whether as a simple or as a complex offense and in whatever stage of execution and mode of participation, is pending in court, shall be suspended from office."cralaw virtua1aw library

    It is settled jurisprudence that the aforequoted provision makes it mandatory for the Sandiganbayan to suspend any public officer who has been validly charged with a violation of R.A. No. 3019, Book II, Title 7 of the Revised Penal Code, or any offense involving fraud upon government or public funds or property. 6

    "The court trying a case has neither discretion nor duty to determine whether preventive suspension is required to prevent the accused from using his office to intimidate witnesses or frustrate his prosecution or continue committing malfeasance in office." 7 This is based on the presumption that unless the public officer is suspended, he may frustrate his prosecution or commit further acts of malfeasance or both.

    On the other hand, we find merit in petitioner’s second assigned error. The Sandiganbayan erred in imposing a 90 day suspension upon petitioner for the single case filed against him. Under Section 63 (b) of the Local Government Code, "any single preventive suspension of local elective officials shall not extend beyond sixty (60) days." 8

    WHEREFORE, the appealed decision of the Sandiganbayan is AFFIRMED subject to the MODIFICATION that the suspension be reduced to 60 days.chanrobles virtual lawlibrary

    SO ORDERED.

    Narvasa, C.J., Melo, Francisco and Panganiban, JJ., concur.

    Endnotes:



    1. SEC. 3. Corrupt practices of public officers. — In addition to acts or omissions of public officers already penalized by existing law, the following shall constitute corrupt practices of any public officer and are hereby declared to be unlawful:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    x       x       x


    (e) Causing any undue injury to any party, including the Government, or giving any private party any unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference in the discharge of his official, administrative or judicial functions through manifest partiality, evident bad faith or gross inexcusable negligence. This provision shall apply to officers and employees of offices or government corporations charged with the grant of licenses or permits or other concessions.

    2. Resolution of December 4, 1996 of the First Division of the Supreme Court in G.R. No. 126771 (Dindo Rios v. Sandiganbayan and People of the Philippines).

    3. Rollo, p. 27.

    4. Lim-Arce v. Arce, 205 SCRA 21 (1992); City Mayor of Zamboanga v. CA, Et Al., 182 SCRA 785 (1990).

    5. Lim-Arce, supra; Soriano v. Quintos, 133 SCRA 215 (1984).

    6. Bunye v. Escareal, 226 SCRA 332 (1993); Gonzaga v. Sandiganbayan, 201 SCRA 417 (1991); People v. Albano, 163 SCRA 511 (1988); Bolastig v. Sandiganbayan, 235 SCRA 103 (1994).

    7. Bolastig, supra.

    8. "SEC. 63 (b). Preventive suspension may be imposed at any time after the issues are joined, when the evidence of guilt is strong, and given the gravity of the offense, there is great probability that the continuance in office of the respondent could influence the witnesses or pose a threat to the safety and integrity of the records and other evidence; Provided, That, any single preventive suspension of local elective officials shall not extend beyond sixty (60) days: Provided, further, That in the event that several administrative cases are filed against an elective official, he cannot be preventively suspended for more than ninety (90) days within a single year on the same ground or grounds existing and known at the time of the first suspension."

    G.R. No. 129913   September 26, 1997 - DINDO C. RIOS v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.


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