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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-2001 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. No. 137538 September 3, 2001 - OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN v. HON. FRANCISCO B. IBAY

  • A.M. No. MTJ-00-1249 September 4, 2001 - PHIL. GERIATRICS FOUNDATION, ET AL. v. LYDIA QUERUBIN LAYOSA

  • A.M. No. P-00-1373 September 4, 2001 - ELIZABETH A. TIONGCO v. ROGELIO S. MOLINA, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. P-01-1501 September 4, 2001 - JOSEPHINE D. SARMIENTO v. ALBERT S. SALAMAT

  • A.M. No. P-01-1502 September 4, 2001 - CRESENCIO N. BONGALOS v. JOSE R. MONUNGOLH and VICTORIA D. JAMITO

  • A.M. No. P-99-1357 September 4, 2001 - SHERWIN M. BALOLOY v. JOSE B. FLORES

  • A.M. No. RTJ-01-1651 September 4, 2001 - PROSECUTOR LEO C. TABAO v. JUDGE FRISCO T. LILAGAN

  • G.R. No. 125359 September 4, 2001 - ROBERTO S. BENEDICTO and HECTOR T. RIVERA v. THE COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. No. 126859 September 4, 2001 - YOUSEF AL-GHOUL, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 127181 September 4, 2001 - LAND BANK OF THE PHIL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132709 September 4, 2001 - CAMILO L. SABIO, ET AL. v. INTERNATIONAL CORPORATE BANK, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 134490 September 4, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JOEL BRAGAT

  • G.R. Nos. 135356-58 September 4, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MELECIO SAGARINO

  • G.R. No. 138923 September 4, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ANITA AYOLA, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. MTJ-01-1344 September 5, 2001 - LYDIO ARCILLA, ET AL. v. LUCIO PALAYPAYON, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 128145 September 5, 2001 - J.C. LOPEZ & ASSOCIATES v. COMMISSION ON AUDIT, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 133886 September 5, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. OSCAR PARBA

  • G.R. No. 134101 September 5, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FELINO O. LLANITA

  • G.R. No. 136054 September 5, 2001 - SEVERINA SAN MIGUEL v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132714 September 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RENATO LALINGJAMAN

  • G.R. Nos. 139064-66 September 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALBERTO ARCE

  • G.R. No. 140529 September 6, 2001 - JOSE P. LOPEZ v. OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 141400 September 6, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EVANGELINE GANENAS

  • Admin. Case. No. 4863 September 7, 2001 - URBAN BANK v. ATTY. MAGDALENO M. PEÑA

  • G.R. No. 114858-59 September 7, 2001 - COLUMBUS PHILIPPINES BUS CORPORATION v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION

  • G.R. No. 126352 September 7, 2001 - GSIS v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 127261 September 7, 2001 - VISAYAN SURETY & INSURANCE CORPORATION v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 129644 September 7, 2001 - CHINA BANKING CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 131805 September 7, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. GREGORIO HERMOSA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132064 September 7, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ISAGANI BAYENG, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 132320 September 7, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. CONRADO OJERIO

  • G.R. Nos. 135402-03 September 7, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. IAN GONZAGA

  • G.R. No. 136779 September 7, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ARNEL ASUNCION

  • G.R. No. 142065 September 7, 2001 - LENIDO LUMANOG v. HON. JAIME N. SALAZAR

  • G.R. No. 142875 September 7, 2001 - EDGAR AGUSTILO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144877 September 7, 2001 - DEVELOPMENT BANK OF THE PHIL. v. VERONICA AGUIRRE, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. P-01-1506 September 10, 2001 - GEORGE S. BICBIC v. DHALIA E. BORROMEO

  • G.R. Nos. 104769 & 135016 September 10, 2001 - AFP MUTUAL BENEFIT ASSO. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 118943 September 10, 2001 - MARIO HORNALES v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 130362 September 10, 2001 - INT’L FLAVORS & FRAGRANCES (PHIL.) v. MERLIN J. ARGOS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 138485 September 10, 2001 - DR. v. COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE

  • G.R. No. 141970 September 10, 2001 - METROPOLITAN BANK v. FLORO T. ALEJO

  • G.R. No. 145588 September 10, 2001 - ESPERIDION LOPEZ, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140398 September 11, 2001 - FRANCISCO DELA MERCED, ET AL. v. GSIS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 121877 September 12, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. ERLINDA GONZALES

  • G.R. Nos. 138431-36 September 12, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DIOSCORA M. ARABIA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140903 September 12, 2001 - HENRY SY v. COMMISSION ON SETTLEMENT OF LAND PROBLEMS, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. 00-1-4-03-SC September 13, 2001 - RE: REQUEST FOR LIVE RADIO-TV COVERAGE OF THE TRIAL IN THE SANDIGANBAYAN OF THE PLUNDER CASES AGAINST FORMER PRESIDENT JOSEPH E. ESTRADA v. JOSEPH E. ESTRADA and INTEGRATED BAR OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • A.M. No. 00-4-188-RTC September 13, 2001 - REQUEST OF MR. OSCAR T. LLAMAS FOR RE-ASSIGNMENT OSCAR T. LLAMAS v. EMMANUEL LACANDOLA AND ET. AL.

  • G.R. No. 120009 September 13, 2001 - DOLE PHILIPPINES v. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION

  • G.R. No. 122095 September 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. DOMINGO DAWISAN

  • G.R. No. 127913 September 13, 2001 - RCBC v. METRO CONTAINER CORP.

  • G.R. No. 132354 September 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DEOMEDES IGLESIA

  • G.R. Nos. 136840-42 September 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMEO NAVARETTE

  • G.R. No. 137250-51 September 13, 2001 - PABLO MARGAREJO v. HON. ADELARDO ESCOSES

  • G.R. No. 138972-73 September 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EUGENIO B. MARQUEZ, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 140512 September 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. PETER PELERAS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142043 September 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NELSON BITUON

  • G.R. No. 142430 September 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RONNIE QUINICIO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142444 September 13, 2001 - OFELIA D. ARTUZ v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142649 September 13, 2001 - ANTONIO C. SAN LUIS v. COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. No. 143702 September 13, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ZALDY MENDOZA

  • G.R. No. 129212 September 14, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MARIO LACUESTA, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-00-1575 September 17, 2001 - ISAGANI RIZON v. JUDGE OSCAR E. ZERNA

  • A.M. No. RTJ 99-1498 September 17, 2001 - VICENTE P. LIM v. JUDGE JACINTA B. TAMBAGO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 111584 September 17, 2001 - PRODUCERS BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES v. COURT OF APPEALS and SPOUSES SALVADOR Y. CHUA and EMILIA U. CHUA

  • G.R. No. 135644 September 17, 2001 - GOVERNMENT SERVICE INSURANCE SYSTEM v. SPOUSES GONZALO and MATILDE LABUNG-DEANG

  • G.R. No. 135912 September 17, 2001 - ODIN SECURITY AGENCY v. SANDIGANBAYAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 138219 September 17, 2001 - GERARDO V. TAMBAOAN, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 138943-44 September 17, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. HENRY ALMAZAN

  • G.R. No. 141209 September 17, 2001 - ANTONIA HUFANA, ET AL. v. WILLIAM ONG GENATO

  • A. C. No. 5043 September 19, 2001 - ABEDIN L. OSOP v. ATTY. V. EMMANUEL C. FONTANILLA

  • G.R. No. 135936 September 19, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. GUALBERTO MIRADOR alias "GOLING"

  • G.R. No. 144400 September 19, 2001 - DOMINGO O. IGNACIO v. COCA-COLA BOTTLERS PHILS.

  • A.M. No. MTJ-01-1369 September 20, 2001 - GUILLERMA D. CABAÑERO v. JUDGE ANTONIO K. CAÑON

  • A.M. No. MTJ-01-1371 September 20, 2001 - ATTY. NESCITO C. HILARIO v. JUDGE ROMEO A. QUILANTANG

  • A.M. No. RTJ-99-1472 September 20, 2001 - SPOUSES HERMINIO, ET Al. v. HON. DEMETRIO D. CALIMAG

  • A.M. No. P-01-1483 September 20, 2001 - EDNA FE F. AQUINO v. ISABELO LAVADIA

  • G.R. No. 116938 September 20, 2001 - LEONILA GARCIA-RUEDA v. REMEDIOS A. AMOR, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 127405 September 20, 2001 - MARJORIE TOCAO and WILLIAM T. BELO v. COURT OF APPEALS and NENITA A. ANAY

  • G.R. No. 130399 September 20, 2001 - PUBLIC UTILITIES DEPARTMENT v. HON. TEOFISTO T. GUINGONA

  • G.R. Nos. 135068-72 September 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MAXIMO RAMOS

  • G.R. No. 137674 September 20, 2001 - WILLIAM GO KIM HUY v. SANTIAGO GO KIM HUY, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 139410 September 20, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. SILVERIO AGUERO

  • G.R. No. 140898 September 20, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. JOSE ISHIKAWA AMBA

  • A.M. No. P-99-1289 September 21, 2001 - JUDGE NAPOLEON S. DIAMANTE v. ANTHONY A. ALAMBRA

  • G.R. Nos. 119609-10 September 21, 2001 - PCGG v. HONORABLE SANDIGANBAYAN (Third Division), ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 128876 September 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MANOLITO FELIZAR y CAPULI

  • G.R. No. 132384 September 21, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MARLON GADIA

  • G.R. No. 134596 September 21, 2001 - RAYMUND ARDONIO v. THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

  • G.R. No. 142889 September 21, 2001 - EXECUTIVE LABOR ARBITER RICARDO N. OLAIREZ v. OMBUDSMAN ANIANO A. DESIERTO

  • G.R. No. 145416 September 21, 2001 - GOLDEN HORIZON REALTY CORPORATION v. SY CHUAN

  • A.M. No. 99-6-79-MTC September 24, 2001 - REPORT ON THE JUDICIAL AUDIT CONDUCTED IN THE MUNICIPAL TRIAL COURT

  • A.M. No. P-01-1512 September 24, 2001 - TERESITA H. ZIPAGAN v. JOVENCIO N. TATTAO

  • G.R. Nos. 132442-44 September 24, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. BERNARDINO ARANZADO

  • G.R. Nos. 135524-25 September 24, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. MANOLITO AGUSTIN

  • G.R. No. 141897 September 24, 2001 - METRO CONSTRUCTION v. CHATHAM PROPERTIES

  • G.R. No. 144404 September 24, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. LEODEGARIO BASCUGUIN Y AGQUIZ

  • G.R. Nos. 127759-60 September 25, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. PO3 NOEL FELICIANO

  • G.R. Nos. 134527-28 September 25, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. SERAPIO REY alias APIONG

  • G.R. Nos. 136867-68 September 25, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. RODRIGO GALVEZ y JEREZ

  • G.R. No. 137612 September 25, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. FRANCISCO ANTINERO BERIARMENTE

  • A.C. No. 4497 September 26, 2001 - MR. and MRS. VENUSTIANO G. SABURNIDO v. ATTY. FLORANTE E. MADROÑO

  • A.C. No. 4990 September 26, 2001 - ELENA ZARATE-BUSTAMANTE and LEONORA SAVET CATABIAN v. ATTY. FLORENTINO G. LIBATIQUE

  • G.R. No. 122824 September 26, 2001 - AURORA F. IGNACIO v. VALERIANO BASILIO,

  • G.R. No. 123058 September 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALFREDO NAPUD, JR.

  • G.R. No. 129107 September 26, 2001 - ALFONSO L. IRINGAN v. HON. COURT OF APPEALS , ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 129530-31 September 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. WILFREDO OLARTE

  • G.R. Nos. 138308-10 September 26, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. PABLO SANTOS

  • G.R. No. 142564 September 26, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. HILGEM NERIO y GIGANTO

  • G.R. Nos. 143108-09 September 26, 2001 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES. v. COURT OF APPEALS

  • Adm. Case. No. 5505 September 27, 2001 - SEVERINO RAMOS v. ATTY. ELLIS JACOBA and ATTY. OLIVIA VELASCO JACOBA

  • G.R. No. 131864-65 September 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. SHERJOHN ARONDAIN and JOSE PRECIOSO

  • G.R. Nos. 134963-64 September 27, 2001 - ALFREDO LONG and FELIX ALMERIA v. LYDIA BASA

  • G.R. No. 137676 September 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ATTY. ROBERTO DIONISIO

  • G.R. No. 144035 September 27, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. VICENTE M. BASQUEZ

  • A.M. No. P-00-1391 September 28, 2001 - LIBRADA D. TORRES v. NELSON C. CABESUELA

  • G.R. No. 122425 September 28, 2001 - FLORDELIZA H. CABUHAT v. THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. No. 124535 September 28, 2001 - THE RURAL BANK OF LIPA CITY, ET AL. v. HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 125154 September 28, 2001 - DIGNA VERGEL v. COURT OF APPEALS and DOROTEA-TAMISIN GONZALES

  • G.R. No. 125442 September 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. FERNANDO ARELLANO y ROBLES

  • G.R. No. 127232 September 28, 2001 - GOLDENROD v. HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS and PATHFINDER HOLDINGS (PHILIPPINES)

  • G.R. No. 127241 September 28, 2001 - LA CONSOLACION COLLEGE, ET AL. v. NLRC , ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 134128 September 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. GERARDO DE LAS ERAS y ZAFRA

  • G.R. No. 134928 September 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. FILOMENO BARNUEVO. ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 140789-92 September 28, 2001 - THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. ALIPIO CARBONELL and DIONISIO CARBONELL

  • G.R. No. 145371 September 28, 2001 - PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES v. BEN AQUINO and ROMEO AQUINO

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    G.R. No. 134596   September 21, 2001 - RAYMUND ARDONIO v. THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    FIRST DIVISION

    [G.R. No. 134596. September 21, 2001.]

    RAYMUND ARDONIO, Petitioner, v. THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Respondent.

    R E S O L U T I O N


    KAPUNAN, J.:


    In his petition for review on certiorari before this Court, petitioner Raymund Ardonio seeks to set aside the Decision of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R CR No. 18956, dated October 21, 1997, and its Resolution of June 29, 1998 denying petitioner’s motion for reconsideration. The assailed decision affirmed the conviction of the accused for the crime of Homicide by the Regional Trial Court, Branch 24, Iloilo City, in Criminal Case No. 36560.

    The conviction of the appellant stemmed from an information reading as follows:chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    That on or about April 4, 1991, in the Municipality of Lemery, Province of Iloilo, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused, armed with a firearm of unknown caliber, with treachery and abused (sic) of superior strength and a decided purpose to kill, did then and there, willfully, unlawfully and feloniously attack, assault and shoot Emmanuel Balano inflicting gunshot wound in the head which caused his death,

    CONTRARY TO LAW. 1

    Upon arraignment, petitioner pleaded not guilty to the crime charged. Trial proceeded in due course. The evidence of the prosecution as found by the trial court is as follows:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    Prosecution evidence tends to show that in celebration of its fiesta, Brgy. Northwest Zone, Lemery, Iloilo, the residents held a dance in the evening of April 3, 1991. At about 1:00 a.m. the following morning (April 4) a violent commotion took place just outside the dancehall. Emmanuel Balano and Allan Ardonio who earlier that evening had an altercation inside the dancehall which incidentally was pacified, were seen exchanging fist blows. Then three persons were seen ganging up on Emmanuel, namely: Lito Ardonio, Elmer Calubia and Raymund Ardonio. The latter in particular, pulled Emmanuel towards the side of the fence and shot him. Upon being hit, Emmanuel fell, face down. Forthwith, Lito, Allan, Elmer and Raymund ran away from the place.

    While the fighting was going on, Adolfo Ardonio, the father of Allan and Raymund, was seen at the dark portion of the street, holding a long firearm. 2

    On the other hand, the defense put up by the petitioner is summarized by the trial court as follows:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    In his defense which is corroborated in part by Adolfo Ardonio and substantially by Elvis Calubia, Accused Raymund Ardonio admits that he was at the dancehall on that occasion. According to him, about past midnight, there was an altercation inside the dancehall between Emmanuel Balano and his brother, Allan Ardonio. This was pacified, however. About thirty minutes thereafter, an explosion (shot) was heard outside the gate of the dancehall. People scampered, as a result. The policemen inside the dancehall rushed out He too went out Outside, he saw Emmanuel lying flat on the ground. Somebody informed him that Allan shot Emmanuel. On hearing this, he hurriedly proceeded to the house of his grandfather, Ramon Ardonio. When he reached the place, Elvis Calubia, Lito Ardonio and Allan were there. A few moments later, policemen arrived looking for his father and Allan. Lito surrendered Allan to the policemen. The latter then led Allan towards the Municipal Bldg. and mauled him along the way. He wanted to accompany Allan but the policemen prevented him. Sometime later, two explosions were heard. After a short while, his mother and brother, Jagip arrived and informed them that Allan was shot. He stayed in the house of his grandfather until 6:00 a.m. Then, he decided to leave for home. On that occasion or sometime thereafter there never was an attempt to arrest him as a suspect in the killing of Emmanuel. 3

    Based on the evidence presented, on April 4, 1995, the trial court rendered a decision finding Raymund Ardonio guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of homicide and not murder. It found that Ardonio’s defense of alibi could not succeed considering his positive identification by credible witnesses, Liezl Vitala and Salvador Castor as the author of the killing of Emmanuel Balano. It, however, ruled out the qualifying circumstances of treachery and abuse of superior strength in the killing of Balano. According to the trial court, while there was superiority in number, this was not taken advantage of "as initially the fight was only between Allan and Emmanuel. Lito and Elmer only came to the succor of Allan. Likewise, Raymund, but unlike the two, he used a gun which resulted in the death of Emmanuel."cralaw virtua1aw library

    The dispositive portion of the trial court’s decision reads:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    WHEREFORE, premises considered, the Court finds accused Raymund Ardonio guilty beyond reasonable doubt of homicide and hereby sentences him to a prison term covering the period from fourteen (14) years, eight (8) months and one (1) day to seventeen (17) years and four (4) months; to pay the heirs of Emmanuel Balano the sum of Fifty Thousand Pesos (P50,000) as compensatory damages; to pay the sum of Twenty Six Thousand One Hundred Pesos (P26,100) representing the funeral, wake and burial expenses; and, to pay the costs.

    Accused should be credited in full for the period of preventive imprisonment if he agrees voluntarily in writing to abide by the disciplinary rules imposed on convicted prisoners; otherwise, only four-fifths thereof

    SO ORDERED. 4

    Petitioner questioned his conviction before the Court of Appeals. As mentioned at the onset, petitioner’s conviction was affirmed by the court a quo. Hence, petitioner is before this Court on the ground that there exists evidence which casts as reasonable doubt as to his guilt

    The fundamental issue raised in this petition is the failure of the lower court and the Honorable Court of Appeals to consider the presence of evidence raising reasonable doubt as to the guilt of the accused, consisting of the testimony of prosecution witness Salvador Castor, granted full credence by the lower court and the Honorable Court of Appeals as an eyewitness to the incident, but the testimony of this witness that he reported the incident to the police authorities including the fact that it was the petitioner who caused the death of the victim, yet the police authorities did not pick up and arrest the petitioner, who was present when the arrest was made, and the person arrested was Allan Ardonio who was eventually killed because of his being the culprit in causing the death of the victim, Emmanuel Balano. The fundamental legal principle in the conviction of the accused is that his guilt must be proved by evidence beyond reasonable doubt. And the presence of evidence either favoring his guilt or his innocence must be resolved in favor of his innocence, as moral certainty of his guilt would not be present. (People v. Bania, 134 SCRA 353; People v. Libag; 184 SCRA 719; People v. Fernandez, 186 SCRA 839). 5

    After a careful evaluation of the records of this case, we find the petition to be without merit.

    The prosecution and the defense presented contradictory accounts of the events leading to the death of Emmanuel Balano. Well-settled is the doctrine that the opinion of the trial court as to which version of the commission of the crime should be believed is entitled to great respect. This is because the trial judge had the opportunity to observe the demeanor witnesses on the stand and thus determine who of the witnesses deserve credence. 6 A close examination of the records reveals no justification to depart from the trial court’s findings on the issue of credibility.

    Petitioner failed to show any ill-motive on the part of witnesses Liezl Vitala and Salvador Castor for testifying against him. There being no showing of improper motive on the part of Liezl and Salvador for identifying the accused as the perpetrator of the crime, the presumption is that they were not so actuated and their testimonies are entitled to full faith and credit. 7 The trial court ruled, thus:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    As regards the testimonies given by prosecution witnesses Liezel Vitala and Salvador Castor, implicating accused in the fatal shooting of Emmanuel [Balano], no evidence was ever introduced ascribing ill motive on their part in testifying.’Testimony of prosecution witnesses pointing to accused as murderer is credible where there is no evidence of grudges or ill-will . . . . it is hardly credible that such a person would pervert the truth, testify to a falsehood, and cause the damnation of one who had neither brought him harm or injury.’ (People v. Mendoza, L-34335, March 25,1983).

    The mere fact that the police authorities failed to arrest accused who was allegedly in the house of Ramon Ardonio at the time they arrested Allan thereat is not conclusive of the fact of his innocence or that Allan is the guilty party in the shooting of Emmanuel. There was almost spontaneity in the shooting of Emmanuel and the arrest of Allan so that it could not be far-fetched that the police authorities, in effecting the arrest, were guided more by the incident that transpired earlier inside the dancehall whereat Allan and Emmanuel traded fist blows.

    From the evidence adduced by the prosecution, it appears that Allan and Emmanuel traded fist blows first, then Lito Ardonio and Elmer Calubia joined the fray, after which Raymund appeared and forthwith shot Emmanuel. 8

    Petitioner, however, makes much of the fact that it was Allan Ardonio who was initially arrested by the police authorities. The arrest of petitioner’s brother was allegedly based on information provided by prosecution witness Salvador Castor to the police immediately after the incident. Moreover, petitioner claims that he was present at the time of his brother’s arrest and yet the police authorities did not arrest him. Such claims are of no moment. Aside from petitioner’s self-serving claim that he was present at the time of his brother’s arrest, there is no other evidence to prove that he indeed was there when the authorities picked-up Allan. The police had enough reason to arrest Allan, as he was involved in a fistfight with the victim moments before the latter was shot. Thus, the mere fact that Allan was arrested does not in anyway cast a reasonable doubt on the prosecution’s evidence that it was petitioner who shot the victim. Moreover, as pointed out by the Office of the Solicitor General, petitioner left Lemery, Iloilo, as disclosed by his father, Adolfo Ardonio to the court server who attempted to serve the warrant of arrest on petitioner. This Court has invariably held that flight is an indicium of guilt. 9

    All told, petitioner merely raises questions of fact. The trial court’s factual findings have already been affirmed by the Court of Appeals, thus:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    The inconsistencies pointed out by appellant refer to collateral and insignificant matters which do not militate against the firmly established fact that the appellant committed the crime (People v. Ocampo, G.R. No. 83436, February 9, 1993, 318 SCRA 609) Such inconsistencies cannot undermine the witnesses’ credibility nor detract from the truth that Liezl and Salvador witnessed the incident and positively identified appellant as the killer of Emmanuel. Not only that, even appellant admits that the testimonies of the eyewitnesses jibed on material points indicating appellant’s culpability.

    Contrary to appellant’s claim, the eyewitnesses did not give conflicting testimonies detrimental to the case of the prosecution. Salvador merely gave details which Liezl failed to notice, such as the fistfight between Emmanuel and Allan, the carbine slung from the shoulder of Emmanuel, the persons who gave Emmanuel assistance after the shooting and Emmanuel’s companion at the dance hall. It was not surprising because Salvador was with Emmanuel before the shooting incident. Both joined the dance, and went out to buy candy from the store of Roding Cordero. However, Salvador returned to the dance hall ahead of Emmanuel who had to wait for his change. On the other hand, since Liezel was more interested in the coronation of the muses, she did not pay special attention to any person until the second fistfight between Emmanuel and Allan outside the dance hall. This explained why she stayed and waited although she was not feeling very well.

    x       x       x


    The evidence on hand has amply proven appellant’s criminal liability for shooting Emmanuel Bolano (sic) to death. Appellant was positively identified by two eyewitnesses whose presence at the scene of the crime was not successfully refuted. Besides, appellant’s defenses of denial and alibi are weak. Denial, like alibi is inherently a weak defense and cannot prevail over the positive testimonies of Salvador Castor and Liezl Vitala, that appellant shot the victim Emmanuel Balano. (People v. Amaguin, G.R. Nos. 54344-45, January 10, 1994, 229 SCRA 166; People v. Calope, G.R. No. 97284 January 21, 1994, 229 SCRA 413).

    x       x       x 10

    As petitioner failed to present any compelling reason for this Court to disregard the factual findings of the lower courts, the petition must fail.

    IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING, the petition is DENIED.

    SO ORDERED.

    Davide, Jr., C.J., Pardo, and Ynares-Santiago, JJ., concur.

    Puno, J., on official leave.

    Endnotes:



    1. Rollo, p. 19.

    2. Ibid.

    3. Rollo, p. 20.

    4. Rollo p. 22.

    5. Id, at 10-11.

    6. People v. Paredes, 332 Phil. 633, 639 (1996).

    7. People v. Henandez, 304 SCRA 186, 194 (1999); People v. Tabaco, 270 SCRA 32, 54 (1991).

    8. Id., at 49.

    9. People v. Javier, 229 SCRA 638 (1994).

    10. Rollo, pp. 28-30.

    G.R. No. 134596   September 21, 2001 - RAYMUND ARDONIO v. THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES


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