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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
 

   
November-2001 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. No. 137968 November 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALEJANDRE DELOS SANTOS

  • G.R. Nos. 123138-39 November 8, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILS. v. HONESTO LLANDELAR

  • A.M. MTJ-01-1375 November 13, 2001 - REPORT ON THE JUDICIAL AUDIT IN THE MTCs of CALASIAO. BINMALEY

  • A.M. No. RTJ-00-1601 November 13, 2001 - ELIEZER A. SIBAYAN-JOAQUIN v. ROBERTO S. JAVELLANA

  • G.R. No. 104629 November 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JULIUS KINOK

  • G.R. No. 134498 November 13, 2001 - CELIA M. MERIZ v. PEOPLE OF THE PHIL

  • G.R. Nos. 135454-56 November 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. RODERICK SANTOS

  • A.M. No. CA-01-10-P November 14, 2001 - ALDA C. FLORIA v. CURIE F. SUNGA, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. P-01-1518 November 14, 2001 - ANTONIO A. ARROYO v. SANCHO L. ALCANTARA

  • G.R. No. 122736 November 14, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FROILAN PADILLA

  • G.R. No. 123819 November 14, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. STEPHEN MARK WHISENHUNT

  • G.R. No. 133877 November 14, 2001 - RIZAL COMMERCIAL BANKING CORPORATION v. ALFA RTW MANUFACTURING CORPORATION

  • G.R. No. 133910 November 14, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JOSE VIRREY y DEHITO

  • G.R. No. 135511-13 November 14, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ENTICO MARIANO y EXCONDE

  • G.R. No. 137613 November 14, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROSALITO CABOQUIN

  • G.R. No. 138914 November 14, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EFREN MANTES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142870 November 14, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DINDO F. PAJOTAL, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 143513 & 143590 November 14, 2001 - POLYTECHNIC UNIVERSITY OF THE PHILIPPINES v. COURT OF APPEALS and FIRESTONE CERAMICS

  • A.M. No. RTJ-00-1599 November 15, 2001 - TRANQUILINO F. MERIS v. JUDGE FLORENTINO M. ALUMBRES

  • G.R. No. 123213 November 15, 2001 - NEPOMUCENA BRUTAS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126584 November 15, 2001 - VALLEY LAND RESOURCES, INC., ET AL. v. VALLEY GOLF CLUB INC.

  • G.R. No. 127897 November 15, 2001 - DELSAN TRANSPORT LINES v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129018 November 15, 2001 - CARMELITA LEAÑO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 136017 November 15, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JERRY BANTILING

  • G.R. No. 136143 November 15, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. AGAPITO CABOTE a.k.a. "PITO"

  • G.R. No. 137255 November 15, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NOEL MAMALAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 137369 November 15, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ALIAS KOBEN VISTA

  • G.R. No. 141811 November 15, 2001 - FIRST METRO INVESTMENT CORPORATION v. ESTE DEL SOL MOUNTAIN RESERVE

  • G.R. No. 145275 November 15, 2001 - COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE v. LA CAMPANA FABRICA DE TABACOS

  • G.R. No. 148326 November 15, 2001 - PABLO C. VILLABER Petitioner v. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS and REP. DOUGLAS R. CAGAS

  • A.M. No. MTJ-01-1382 November 16, 2001 - MARIO W. CHILAGAN v. EMELINA L. CATTILING

  • A.M. No. P-00-1411 November 16, 2001 - FELICIDAD JACOB v. JUDITH T. TAMBO

  • G.R. No. 120274 November 16, 2001 - SPOUSES FRANCISCO A. PADILLA and GERALDINE S. PADILLA v. COURT OF APPEALS and SPOUSES CLAUDIO AÑONUEVO and CARMELITA AÑONUEVO

  • G.R. No. 127003 November 16, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. FAUSTINO GABON

  • G.R. Nos. 132875-76 November 16, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMEO G. JALOSJOS

  • G.R. No. 132916 November 16, 2001 - RUFINA TANCINCO v. GSIS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 133437 November 16, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. RONALD SAMSON

  • G.R. No. 134486 November 16, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CLEMENTE DAYNA

  • G.R. No. 135038 November 16, 2001 - ROLANDO Y. TAN v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142654 November 16, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. ROLANDO MENDOZA

  • G.R. No. 143802 November 16, 2001 - REYNOLAN T. SALES v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129175 November 19, 2001 - RUBEN N. BARRAMEDA, ET AL. v. ROMEO ATIENZA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 130945 November 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALBERTO CONDINO

  • G.R. No. 132724 November 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. RENIEL SANAHON

  • G.R. Nos. 138358-59 November 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CLAUDIO B. DELA PEÑA

  • G.R. No. 138661 November 19, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JERSON E. ACOJEDO

  • G.R. No. 140920 November 19, 2001 - JUAN LORENZO B. BORDALLO, ET AL. v. THE PROFESSIONAL REGULATIONS COMMISSION AND THE BOARD OF MARINE DECK OFFICERS

  • G.R. No. 148560 November 19, 2001 - JOSEPH EJERCITO ESTRADA v. SANDIGANBAYAN (Third Division) and PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. No. 91486 November 20, 2001 - ALBERTO G. PINLAC v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122276 November 20, 2001 - RODRIGO ALMUETE ET AL., v. MARCELO ANDRES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126204 November 20, 2001 - NAPOCOR v. PHILIPP BROTHERS OCEANIC

  • G.R. Nos. 126538-39 November 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. RODELIO MARCELO

  • G.R. No. 129234 November 20, 2001 - THERMPHIL v. COURT OF APPEALS ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140032 November 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ANGEL C. BALDOZ and MARY GRACE NEBRE

  • G.R. No. 140692 November 20, 2001 - ROGELIO C. DAYAN v. BANK OF THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144401 November 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JOEL GALISIM

  • A.M. No. MTJ-99-1207 November 21, 2001 - NBI v. FRANCISCO D. VILLANUEVA

  • A.M. No. P- 01-1520 November 21, 2001 - MARILOU A. CABANATAN v. CRISOSTOMO T. MOLINA

  • A.M. Nos. RTJ-00-1561 & RTJ-01-1659 November 21, 2001 - CARINA AGARAO v. Judge JOSE J. PARENTELA

  • G.R. No. 125356 November 21, 2001 - SUPREME TRANSLINER INC. v. HON. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132839 November 21, 2001 - ERIC C. ONG v. HON. COURT OF APPEALS and THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. No. 133879 November 21, 2001 - EQUATORIAL REALTY DEVELOPMENT v. MAYFAIR THEATER

  • G.R. No. 136748 November 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JUANITO ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 137457 November 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROSAURO SIA

  • G.R. No. 141881 November 21, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. VIRGILIO BERNABE y RAFOL

  • A.M. No RTJ-01-1664 November 22, 2001 - ALFREDO CAÑADA v. VICTORINO MONTECILLO

  • G.R. No. 109648 November 22, 2001 - PH CREDIT CORPORATION v. COURT OF APPEALS and CARLOS M. FARRALES

  • G.R. Nos. 111502-04 November 22, 2001 - REYNALDO H. JAYLO, ET AL. v. SANDIGANBAYAN

  • G.R. No. 113218 November 22, 2001 - ALEJANDRO TECSON v. HON. COURT OF APPEALS ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 113541 November 22, 2001 - HONGKONG AND SHANGHAI BANKING CORP. EMPLOYEES UNION v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118462 November 22, 2001 - LEOPOLDO GARRIDO, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123893 November 22, 2001 - LUISITO PADILLA , ET AL. v. THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129660 November 22, 2001 - BIENVENIDO P. JABAN and LYDIA B. JABAN v. HON. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 130628 November 22, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. PAULINO LEONAR

  • G.R. No. 132743 November 22, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARCIAL CAÑARES Y ORBES

  • G.R. No. 133861 November 22, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROBERTO SO

  • G.R. Nos. 135853-54 November 22, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. OPENIANO LACISTE

  • G.R. No. 135863 November 22, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. VlRGILIO LORICA

  • G.R. Nos. 136317-18 November 22, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EDUARDO YAOTO

  • G.R. No. 136586 November 22, 2001 - JON AND MARISSA DE YSASI v. ARTURO AND ESTELA ARCEO

  • G.R. No. 139563 November 22, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHIL.. v. AMADOR BISMONTE y BERINGUELA

  • G.R. Nos. 139959-60 November 22, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DEOGRACIAS BURGOS

  • G.R. No. 141602 November 22, 2001 - PACSPORTS PHILS. v. NICCOLO SPORTS, INC.

  • G.R. No. 142316 November 22, 2001 - FRANCISCO A.G. DE LIANO, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143939 November 22, 2001 - HEIRS OF ROSARIO POSADAS REALTY v. ROSENDO.BANTUG

  • G.R. No. 145475 November 22, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. EUSEBIO PUNSALAN

  • G.R. No. 145851 November 22, 2001 - ABELARDO B. LICAROS v. THE SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 146683 November 22, 2001 - CIRILA ARCABA v. ERLINDA TABANCURA VDA. DE BATOCAEL, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-00-1562 November 23, 2001 - CAVITE CRUSADE FOR GOOD GOVERNMENT v. JUDGE NOVATO CAJIGAL

  • G.R. No. 126334 November 23, 2001 - EMILIO EMNACE v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 128886 November 23, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JESUS JULIANDA, JR., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142044 November 23, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. TOBECHUKWU NICHOLAS

  • G.R. No. 144309 November 23, 2001 - SOLID TRIANGLE SALES CORPORATION and ROBERT SITCHON v. THE SHERIFF OF RTC QC, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-01-1662 November 26, 2001 - VICTOR TUZON v. LORETO CLORIBEL-PURUGGANAN

  • G.R. No. 138303 November 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ELROSWELL MANZANO

  • G.R. Nos. 100940-41 November 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. AGUSTIN LADAO y LORETO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 128285 November 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILS. v. ANTONIO PLANA, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 130409-10 November 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JOSUE B. DUMLAO

  • G.R. No. 130907 November 27, 2001 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. HON. CESAR A MANGROBANG, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 130963 November 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MARIANO PASCUA

  • G.R. No. 133381 November 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMULO VILLAVER, ET. AL.

  • G.R. No. 140858 November 27, 2001 - SPOUSES PAPA and LOLITA MANALILI v. SPOUSES ARSENIO and GLICERIA DE LEON

  • G.R. No. 142523 November 27, 2001 - MARIANO L. GUMABON, ET AL. v. AQUILINO T. LARIN

  • G.R. No. 144464 November 27, 2001 - GILDA G. CRUZ and ZENAIDA C. PAITIM v. THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION

  • A.M. No. 00-8-05-SC November 28, 2001 - RE: PROBLEM OF DELAYS IN CASES BEFORE THE SANDIGANBAYAN

  • G.R. No. 128516 November 28, 2001 - DULOS REALTY and DEVELOPMENT CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET. AL.

  • A.M. No. P-01-1485 November 29, 2001 - OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR v. MARIE YVETTE GO, ET AL

  • A.M. No. P-01-1522 November 29, 2001 - JUDGE ANTONIO J. FINEZA v. ROMEO P. ARUELO

  • A.M. No. RTJ-01-1665 November 29, 2001 - ROSAURO M. MIRANDA v. JUDGE CESAR A MANGROBANG

  • G.R. No. 119707 November 29, 2001 - VERONICA PADILLO v. COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. No. 121703 November 29, 2001 - NATIVIDAD T. TANGALIN v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126524 November 29, 2001 - BPI INVESTMENT CORP. v. D.G. CARREON COMMERCIAL CORP., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129282 November 29, 2001 - DMPI EMPLOYEES CREDIT COOPERATIVE v. ALEJANDRO M. VELEZ, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 129609 & 135537 November 29, 2001 - RODIL ENTERPRISES v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 130326 & 137868 November 29, 2001 - COMPANIA GENERAL DE TABACOS DE FILIPINAS AND MANILA TOBACCO TRADING v. THE COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. Nos. 132066-67 November 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BALAS MEDIOS

  • G.R. No. 132133 November 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. WILLIAM ALPE y CUATRO

  • G.R. No. 136848 November 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RENATO T. RAMIREZ

  • G.R. No. 137815 November 29, 2001 - JUANITA T. SERING v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 138489 November 29, 2001 - ELEANOR DELA CRUZ, ET AL. v. COMMISSION ON AUDIT

  • G.R. No. 139470 November 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. SPO2 ANTONIO B. BENOZA

  • G.R. No. 140386 November 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BENNY ACOSTA

  • G.R. No. 141386 November 29, 2001 - COMMISSION ON AUDIT OF THE PROVINCE OF CEBU v. PROVINCE OF CEBU

  • G.R. Nos. 141702-03 November 29, 2001 - CATHAY PACIFIC AIRWAYS v. NLRC and MARTHA Z. SINGSON

  • G.R. No. 142606 November 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. NESTOR MUNTA

  • G.R. No. 143127 November 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RAUL RUBARES Y CAROLINO

  • G.R. No. 143703 November 29, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. JOSE V. MUSA

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    G.R. No. 141881   November 21, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. VIRGILIO BERNABE y RAFOL

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    EN BANC

    [G.R. No. 141881. November 21, 2001.]

    THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. VIRGILIO BERNABE y RAFOL, Accused-Appellant.

    D E C I S I O N


    MELO, J.:


    In an Information dated October 30, 1998, Accused-appellant was charged with the crime of rape allegedly committed as follows:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    That on or about the 29th day of October, 1998 in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused, Virgilio Bernabe y Rafol, by means of force and intimidation, employed upon the person of complainant Maria Esnelia Bernabe y Javier, his daughter, a 17 year old minor, did then and there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge with said private complainant, against her will and consent.

    Contrary to law.

    (p. 13, Rollo.)

    Upon arraignment, Accused-appellant pleaded ‘not guilty’. Thereafter, trial ensued.

    The People’s case is succinctly summarized by the Office of the Solicitor General in its Appellee’s Brief as follows:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    On October 29, 1998, around 1:30 o’ clock in the morning, Maria Esnelia Bernabe was sleeping with her sister in a room of their house located at No. 1919-D Leveriza St., Pasay City, when her father (herein appellant) came home ‘bangag’ or very drunk (p. 9, TSN, December 4, 1999).

    Appellant entered said room, approached Maria Esnelia and started kissing her nape as well as other parts of her body. Then, appellant removed her panty and inserted his penis into her vagina. She resisted by pushing him but to no avail. Appellant succeeded in satisfying his beastly desires on his own daughter just like what happened in the previous years starting 1994 (pp. 7-8, ibid).

    Maria Esnelia could not take it anymore so she reported the incident to her cousin, Cristina Martin (p. 12, ibid; p. 16, TSN, December 11, 1998). Later, she also told her aunts, Marcelina and Analyn Bernabe, about it (p. 16, ibid).

    At 2:00 o’clock in the morning of the same day, she was accompanied by her aunts to the Pasay City police headquarters, where she lodged a complaint for rape against appellant and executed a sworn statement (Exhibit A; p. 5, TSN, December 4, 1998; p. 18, TSN, December 11, 1998).

    At 4:00 o’clock in the morning, policemen came to Maria Esnelia’s house and arrested appellant (p. 19, TSN, December 11, 1998).

    Later that day, Maria Esnelia was examined by Dra. Anabelle Soliman (pp. 5-6, TSN, December 14, 1998). In her testimony, Dra. Soliman revealed, thus:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    Q. And based on your findings and conclusions on the victim stated when interviewed by you that she was sexually abused sometime during the period 1995 up to 1998. Now, based on your findings, would it be compatible on the said allegation?

    A. My conclusions was that, I did not find any injuries on the hymen, as well as on the outside genital parts of the victim, and the opening of the hymen is wide enough to accommodate the average size of a male organ without producing a hymenal injury.

    (pp. 7-8, TSN, December 14, 1998)

    Appellant, on the other hand, denied raping his own daughter. He testified that Maria Esnelia charged him with rape because he resented her boyfriend who for sometime slept in their house. He also depicted her daughter as a rebel and an ingrate who played hooky in school and neglected her studies despite the fact that he works hard to send her to school, and her elder brother had to stop schooling just so she can continue with her studies. Appellant also claimed that his two sisters assisted his daughter in filing the rape case against him because of a land dispute between them. His sisters allegedly wanted to get back at him by using his own daughter through this case. It was also argued that no rape was committed as indicated in the finding of the medico-legal officer whose examination of complainant showed that her hymen has not been injured. Appellant pointed out too that his family lives in a very congested place with complainant sharing her room with a younger sister, for which cause it was impossible for him to have raped Maria Esnelia without being detected.

    On January 29, 2000, the trial court handed down its judgment of conviction, disposing:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    IN VIEW OF ALL THE FOREGOING, the Court opines that the prosecution has proven the guilt of the accused Virgilio Bernabe y Rafol for the crime of Rape as defined and penalized under Article 335 of the Revised Penal Code as amended by RA 7659 and the Court hereby sentences the accused Virgilio Bernabe y Rafol to suffer the penalty of death and to indemnify the complainant P75,000.00, moral and exemplary damages in the amount of P50,000.00.

    SO ORDERED.

    (p. 45, Rollo.)

    Hence, the instant automatic review.

    We have examined the record of the case, especially Maria Esnelia’s testimony, and we find no reason to doubt that she was telling the truth when she declared that her father had raped her. Indeed, no young girl would concoct a sordid tale of so serious a crime as sexual molestation at the hands of her own father, undergo gynecological examination, subject herself to the stigma and embarrassment of a public trial, if her motive were other than a fervent desire to seek justice (People v. Sacapaño, 313 SCRA 650 [1999]; People v. Buenviaje, G.R. No. 130949, April 4, 2001). That Maria Esnelia was only being used by her aunts to get back at her father is too flimsy a reason to inspire belief.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    It is also well-entrenched in our jurisprudence that when it comes to the issue of credibility, this Court, as any other appellate court, would ordinarily defer to the assessment and evaluation given by the trial court, for only trial courts are in so unique a position as to be able to observe that elusive and insurmountable evidence of the witness’ deportment on the witness stand while testifying (People v. Barbera, G.R. No. 130609, May 30, 2000). Only when such assessment is tainted with arbitrariness or oversight of some fact or circumstance of weight and influence will the appellate courts depart from the trial court’s factual conclusions (People v. Balgos, G.R. No. 126115, January 26,2000). No such arbitrariness or oversight appears in the case at hand. As can be gleaned from the record of the case, Maria Esnelia was candid and forthright in her narration of the harrowing experience she underwent at the hands of her own father.

    Appellant harps on the fact that Maria Esnelia’s hymen was intact after the alleged rape. He further contends that there were no signs of injury that would prove that he indeed raped his daughter. In People v. de la Costa (G.R. No. 133904, October 5, 2000), we reiterated an old doctrine to the effect that the absence of external injury does not necessarily negate the commission of rape. Lack of lacerated wounds does not also negate sexual intercourse. A freshly broken hymen is not an essential element of rape. Even the fact that the medical report states that the hymen of the victim is still intact does not negate rape (People v. Bawang, G.R. No. 131942, October 5, 2000). It is well-settled that full penetration is not even required, as proof of entrance showing the slightest penetration of the male organ within the labia or pudendum of the female organ is sufficient. (People v. Tismo, 204 SC RA 535 [1991]; People v. Clopino, 290 SC RA 432 [1998])

    Hackneyed and discredited too is the argument that the place where the rape was committed is so congested and packed with people that any untoward incident would be well-nigh impossible. The Court may take judicial notice of the fact that among poor couples with big families living in small quarters, copulation does not seem to be a problem despite the presence of other persons around them. There is no rule that rape can be committed only in seclusion. We have repeatedly declared that "lust is no respecter of time and place" (People v. Labayne, G.R. No. 132170, April 20, 2001 citing People v. Ignacio, 233 SCRA 1 [1991]).chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    However, before the death penalty can be properly imposed for the crime of rape in accordance with Republic Act No. 7659, an allegation of the complainant’s age as well as filial relationship with the accused is essential. Both minority and actual relationship between the parties must be alleged and proved, otherwise, barred is any conviction for rape in its qualified form (People v. Labayne, supra). In the case at bar, while the Information alleged both the minority of the victim and her relationship with appellant, the prosecution failed to prove the victim’s age when it presented only the baptismal certificate of Maria Esnelia and not her birth certificate. It is elementary that a baptismal certificate only proves the fact of baptism but not the circumstances of birth. Without essential proof on the matter of the date of birth of complainant, or other convincing evidence in the absence thereof, we cannot rule with certainty whether Maria Esnelia was indeed a minor at the time of the commission of the crime, especially so because she does not appear to be obviously a minor, as she allegedly was already 17 years old at the time of the assault. Verily, with our young girls now looking, acting, and dressing up more maturely, one would be hard put to conclude with any measure of certainty, that a budding lass is 13 or 18 years of age. Withal, the penalty of death imposed by the trial court on appellant should be reduced to reclusion perpetua as provided for by law (Article 266-A, Revised Penal Code; People v. del Mundo, Sr., G.R. No. 132065, April 3, 2001).

    The trial court likewise erred in awarding moral damages in the amount of P75,000.00 and exemplary damages amounting to P50,000.00. In line with current jurisprudence, rape victims are entitled to civil indemnity of P50,000.00 and moral damages of P50,000.00 only (People v. Aca-ac, G.R. No. 142500, April 20, 2001). The award of exemplary damages is sustained but in the reduced amount of P25,000.00 also in consonance with prevailing jurisprudence (People v. Bares, G.R. Nos. 137762-65, March 27, 2001).

    WHEREFORE, the decision under review is hereby AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION that the penalty imposed on appellant is downgraded to reclusion perpetua, and with the awards for civil indemnity, moral damages, and exemplary damages reduced to P50,000.00 for the first two, and P25,000.00 for the last.

    No special pronouncement is made as to costs.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    SO ORDERED.

    Davide, Jr., C.J., Bellosillo, Puno, Vitug, Kapunan, Mendoza, Panganiban, Quisumbing, Pardo, Buena, Ynares-Santiago, de Leon, Jr., Sandoval-Guttierrez and Carpio., concur.

    G.R. No. 141881   November 21, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. VIRGILIO BERNABE y RAFOL


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