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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
 

   
June-2003 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. No. 125297 June 6, 2003 - ELVIRA YU OH v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143675 June 9, 2003 - SPS. ROMEO and EMILY GUDA v. ALAN A. LEYNES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 145338 June 9, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ZALDY P. LABIANO

  • A.C. No. 4738 June 10, 2003 - VIOLETA FLORES ALITAGTAG v. VIRGILIO R. GARCIA

  • Bar Matter No. 1036 June 10, 2003 - DONNA MARIE S. AGUIRRE v. EDWIN L. RANA

  • A.M. No. 99-6-81-MTCC June 10, 2003 - REPORT ON THE JUDICIAL AUDIT CONDUCTED IN THE MTCC OF PALAYAN CITY

  • A.M. No. MTJ-99-1203 June 10, 2003 - NELIA A. ZIGA v. RAMON A. AREJOLA

  • A.M. No. P-96-1214 June 10, 2003 - BERNARDINO M. FABIAN, ET AL. v. LEILA (LAILA) M. GALO

  • A.M. No. RTJ-03-1751 June 10, 2003 - ANDREA D. DOMINGO v. ERNESTO P. PAGAYATAN

  • G.R. No. 111159 June 10, 2003 - NORDIC ASIA LIMITED, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 116463 June 10, 2003 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. thru the DPWH v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 119293 June 10, 2003 - SAN MIGUEL CORP. v. NLRC, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123054 June 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FAUSTO B. OBEDO

  • G.R. No. 125778 June 10, 2003 - INTER-ASIA INVESTMENTS INDUSTRIES, INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 125838 June 10, 2003 - DEVELOPMENT BANK OF THE PHIL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126281 June 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. SERGIO A. CARATAO

  • G.R. No. 131842 June 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DIONISIO JACKSON

  • G.R. No. 139561 June 10, 2003 - SPS. FEDERICO & SARAH ATUEL, ET AL. v. SPS. BERNABE & CONCHITA VALDEZ

  • G.R. No. 141115 June 10, 2003 - POSADAS-MOYA and ASSOC. CONST. CO. v. GREENFIELD DEV’T. CORP.

  • G.R. No. 142467 June 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ABELARDO DE CASTRO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143076 June 10, 2003 - PHILIPPINE RURAL ELECTRIC COOPERATIVES ASSOCIATION, ET AL. v. SECRETARY, DILG, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143125 June 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL .vs. DIOSDADO R. CORIAL

  • G.R. No. 144157 June 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LOWELL SALUDES

  • G.R. Nos. 144523-26 June 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FLORENTINO QUIJANO SR.

  • G.R. Nos. 145452-53 June 10, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LARRY CARITATIVO

  • G.R. Nos. 146749 & 147938 June 10, 2003 - CHINA BANKING CORP. v. COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. No. 149154 June 10, 2003 - RODOLFO S. DE JESUS, ET AL. v. COMMISSION ON AUDIT

  • G.R. No. 150611 June 10, 2003 - JACINTO SAGUID v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 153660 June 10, 2003 - PRUDENCIO BANTOLINO, ET AL. v. COCA-COLA BOTTLERS PHILS.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-02-1724 June 12, 2003 - RODOLFO O. MACACHOR v. ROLINDO D. BELDIA JR.

  • G.R. No. 138541 June 12, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JOSE LARRY COLONIA

  • G.R. No. 148327 June 12, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMEO P. DESALISA

  • A.M. No. P-03-1679 June 16, 2003 - OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR v. BEL EDUARDO F. NITAFAN, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. SCC-03-08 June 16, 2003 - ERMELYN A. LIMBONA v. CASAN ALI LIMBONA

  • G.R. No. 95901 June 16, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ANTONIO B. SIBONGA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 138692 June 16, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. OSCAR AREO

  • G.R. Nos. 141280-81 June 16, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RICKY L. SODSOD, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144589 June 16, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JUANITO PACUANCUAN

  • G.R. No. 149683 June 16, 2003 - ILOILO TRADERS FINANCE INC. v. HEIRS OF OSCAR SORIANO JR., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 149750 June 16, 2003 - AURORA ALCANTARA-DAUS v. SPS. HERMOSO & SOCORRO DE LEON

  • A.M. No. MTJ-96-1106 June 17, 2003 - CELESTINA B. CORPUZ v. ORLANDO ANA F. SIAPNO

  • A.M. No. RTJ-02-1710 June 17, 2003 - EVANGELINA C. SAMSON v. JULES A. MEDIA

  • A.M. No. RTJ-03-1784 June 17, 2003 - MANUEL M. ROSALES v. ROMULO S.G. VILLANUEVA

  • G.R. No. 123146 June 17, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ALONA BULI-E, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 128225 June 17, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DANTE A. NARRA

  • G.R. No. 137042 June 17, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FELIPE MUSA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144225 June 17, 2003 - SPS. GODOFREDO and CARMEN ALFREDO v. SPS. ARMANDO and ADELIA BORRAS

  • G.R. No. 145993 June 17, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RUFINO I. MALLARI

  • G.R. No. 148668 June 17, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. TONY L. PEDRONAN

  • G.R. No. 151440 June 17, 2003 - HEIRS OF SIMPLICIO SANTIAGO v. HEIRS OF MARIANO E. SANTIAGO

  • A.M. No. MTJ-03-1493 June 18, 2003 - RENE BOY GOMEZ v. MANUEL D. PATALINGHUG, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 123161 June 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. LIBERATO SOLAMILLO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 125305 June 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BERNABE MONTEMAYOR

  • G.R. Nos. 127756-58 June 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. BENJAMIN P. MEDINA SR.

  • G.R. Nos. 131926 & 138991 June 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MICHAEL U. PAGALASAN, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 134981 June 18, 2003 - FREDELITO P. VITTO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 135857 June 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ADRIANO ARCA

  • G.R. Nos. 140439-40 June 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FELIX HERMOSA

  • G.R. No. 144975 June 18, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. AMADOR SAPIGAO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 149147 June 18, 2003 - FELIX BAROT v. COMELEC CITY BOARD OF CANVASSERS OF TANJAY CITY, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 150327 June 18, 2003 - REPUBLIC OF THE PHIL. v. MARILYN A. PERALTA, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. 01-6-314-RTC June 19, 2003 - RE: REQUEST OF JUDGE ROBERTO S. JAVELLANA, RTC-BR. 59, SAN CARLOS CITY

  • A.M. No. MTJ-92-710 June 19, 2003 - PEDRITA M. HARAYO v. JUDGE MAMERTO Y. COLIFLORES

  • G.R. No. 154411 June 19, 2003 - NATIONAL HOUSING AUTHORITY v. HEIRS OF ISIDRO GUIVELONDO, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. P-03-1701 June 20, 2003 - BALTAZAR LL. FIRMALO v. MELINDA C. QUIERREZ

  • A.M. No. RTJ-00-1594 June 20, 2003 - PASTOR SALUD v. FLORENTINO M. ALUMBRES

  • G.R. No. 122766 June 20, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. FELIPE ESPONILLA, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 127275 June 20, 2003 - PHILIPPINE COMMERCIAL INTERNATIONAL BANK v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 130759 June 20, 2003 - ASIATRUST DEVELOPMENT BANK v. CONCEPTS TRADING CORP.

  • G.R. No. 139332 June 20, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL v. NOLI A. NOVIO

  • G.R. No. 140698 June 20, 2003 - ROGELIO ENGADA v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 142503 June 20, 2003 - ROMUALDO C. PEREZ v. APOLONIO CRUZ

  • G.R. No. 142820 June 20, 2003 - WOLFGANG O. ROEHR v. MARIA CARMEN D. RODRIGUEZ, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 143604 June 20, 2003 - PRISCO LANZADERAS, ET AL. v. AMETHYST SECURITY AND GENERAL SERVICES, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 146595 June 20, 2003 - CARLO A. TAN v. KAAKBAY FINANCE CORP., ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 152436 June 20, 2003 - NPC v. SPS. IGMEDIO CHIONG, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 152766 June 20, 2003 - LILIA SANCHEZ v. COURT OF APPEALS

  • G.R. No. 140872 June 23, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. PABLITO T. INGGO

  • G.R. Nos. 142683-84 June 23, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. SERGIO JOROLAN

  • G.R. Nos. 143760-63 June 23, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ROMEO B. MANLUCTAO

  • G.R. No. 144018 June 23, 2003 - FAR EAST BANK AND TRUST CO. v. TOMAS TOH, SR., ET AL.

  • A.C. No. 3849 June 25, 2003 - FELICIDAD VDA. DE BERNARDO v. JOSE R. RESTAURO

  • G.R. Nos. 105416-17, 111863 & 143715 June 25, 2003 - PHILIPP BROTHERS OCEANIC, INC. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 122109 June 25, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JESUS TORIO

  • G.R. No. 123896 June 25, 2003 - ROSALINDA SERRANO v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 126113 June 25, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. ANTONIO B. GUIHAMA

  • G.R. No. 135323 June 25, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. EDELMA LAGATA

  • G.R. No. 136773 June 25, 2003 - MILAGROS MANONGSONG v. FELOMENA JUMAQUIO ESTIMO, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 146018 June 25, 2003 - EDGAR COKALIONG SHIPPING LINES v. UCPB GENERAL INSURANCE COMPANY

  • G.R. Nos. 147589 & 147613 June 25, 2003 - ANG BAGONG BAYANI-OFW LABOR PARTY v. COMELEC, ET AL.

  • A.M. No. P-01-1472 June 26, 2003 - ADRIANO V. ALBIOR v. DONATO A. AUGUIS

  • A.M. No. P-02-1544 June 26, 2003 - ERNESTO LUMANTA v. WILFREDO M. TUPAS

  • A.M. No. RTJ-02-1670 June 26, 2003 - SPS. CAROLINA AND VILLAMOR GRAGERA v. PABLO B. FRANCISCO

  • A.M. No. RTJ-02-1736 June 26, 2003 - SPS. ARTURO and JOSEFINA DE GUZMAN v. FERNANDO VIL PAMINTUAN

  • A.M. No. RTJ-99-1519 June 26, 2003 - GREGORIO LIMPOT LUMAPAS v. CAMILO E. TAMIN

  • G.R. No. 137296 June 26, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. DIONISIO Q. VICENTE

  • G.R. No. 140967 June 26, 2003 - EMERITA ACOSTA v. EMILIO ENRIQUEZ

  • G.R. No. 141863 June 26, 2003 - BASILIO RIVERA, ET AL. v. COURT OF APPEALS, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 144090 June 26, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. MICHAEL S. MAGUING

  • G.R. No. 145305 June 26, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. REDANTE C. SANTOS

  • G.R. No. 145731 June 26, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. GREGORIO GERAL, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 148730 June 26, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. JOSE D. DELA CRUZ, ET AL.

  • G.R. No. 154705 June 26, 2003 - REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA, ET AL. v. JAMES VINZON

  • G.R. No. 121828 June 27, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. RENE GAYOT PILOLA

  • G.R. Nos. 124830-31 June 27, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. GERARDO P. EVINA

  • G.R. No. 138993 June 27, 2003 - PHILIPPINE VETERANS BANK v. SANTIAGO G. ESTRELLA, ET AL.

  • G.R. Nos. 139217–24 June 27, 2003 - PEOPLE OF THE PHIL. v. NELSON ESPERANZA

  • G.R. No. 143643 June 27, 2003 - NATIONAL POWER CORPORATION v. SPS. JOSE & MA. CLARA CAMPOS

  •  





     
     

    G.R. No. 154705   June 26, 2003 - REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA, ET AL. v. JAMES VINZON

     
    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    EN BANC

    [G.R. No. 154705. June 26, 2003.]

    THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA, HIS EXCELLENCY AMBASSADOR SOERATMIN, and MINISTER COUNSELLOR AZHARI KASIM, Petitioners, v. JAMES VINZON, doing business under the name and style of VINZON TRADE AND SERVICES, Respondent.

    D E C I S I O N


    AZCUNA, J.:


    This is a petition for review on certiorari to set aside the Decision of the Court of Appeals dated May 30, 2002 and its Resolution dated August 16, 2002, in CA-G.R. SP No. 66894 entitled "The Republic of Indonesia, His Excellency Ambassador Soeratmin and Minister Counselor Azhari Kasim v. Hon. Cesar Santamaria, Presiding Judge, RTC Branch 145, Makati City, and James Vinzon, doing business under the name and style of Vinzon Trade and Services." chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    Petitioner, Republic of Indonesia, represented by its Counsellor, Siti Partinah, entered into a Maintenance Agreement in August 1995 with respondent James Vinzon, sole proprietor of Vinzon Trade and Services. The Maintenance Agreement stated that respondent shall, for a consideration, maintain specified equipment at the Embassy Main Building, Embassy Annex Building and the Wisma Duta, the official residence of petitioner Ambassador Soeratmin. The equipment covered by the Maintenance Agreement are air conditioning units, generator sets, electrical facilities, water heaters, and water motor pumps. It is likewise stated therein that the agreement shall be effective for a period of four years and will renew itself automatically unless cancelled by either party by giving thirty days prior written notice from the date of expiry. 1

    Petitioners claim that sometime prior to the date of expiration of the said agreement, or before August 1999, they informed respondent that the renewal of the agreement shall be at the discretion of the incoming Chief of Administration, Minister Counsellor Azhari Kasim, who was expected to arrive in February 2000. When Minister Counsellor Kasim assumed the position of Chief of Administration in March 2000, he allegedly found respondent’s work and services unsatisfactory and not in compliance with the standards set in the Maintenance Agreement. Hence, the Indonesian Embassy terminated the agreement in a letter dated August 31, 2000. 2 Petitioners claim, moreover, that they had earlier verbally informed respondent of their decision to terminate the agreement.

    On the other hand, respondent claims that the aforesaid termination was arbitrary and unlawful. Respondent cites various circumstances which purportedly negated petitioners’ alleged dissatisfaction over respondent’s services: (a) in July 2000, Minister Counsellor Kasim still requested respondent to assign to the embassy an additional full-time worker to assist one of his other workers; (b) in August 2000, Minister Counsellor Kasim asked respondent to donate a prize, which the latter did, on the occasion of the Indonesian Independence Day golf tournament; and (c) in a letter dated August 22, 2000, petitioner Ambassador Soeratmin thanked respondent for sponsoring a prize and expressed his hope that the cordial relations happily existing between them will continue to prosper and be strengthened in the coming years.

    Hence, on December 15, 2000, respondent filed a complaint 3 against petitioners docketed as Civil Case No. 18203 in the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Makati, Branch 145. On February 20, 2001, petitioners filed a Motion to Dismiss, alleging that the Republic of Indonesia, as a foreign sovereign State, has sovereign immunity from suit and cannot be sued as a party-defendant in the Philippines. The said motion further alleged that Ambassador Soeratmin and Minister Counsellor Kasim are diplomatic agents as defined under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and therefore enjoy diplomatic immunity. 4 In turn, respondent filed on March 20, 2001, an Opposition to the said motion alleging that the Republic of Indonesia has expressly waived its immunity from suit. He based this claim upon the following provision in the Maintenance Agreement:jgc:chanrobles.com.ph

    "Any legal action arising out of this Maintenance Agreement shall be settled according to the laws of the Philippines and by the proper court of Makati City, Philippines."cralaw virtua1aw library

    Respondent’s Opposition likewise alleged that Ambassador Soeratmin and Minister Counsellor Kasim can be sued and held liable in their private capacities for tortious acts done with malice and bad faith. 5

    On May 17, 2001, the trial court denied herein petitioners’ Motion to Dismiss. It likewise denied the Motion for Reconsideration subsequently filed.

    The trial court’s denial of the Motion to Dismiss was brought up to the Court of Appeals by herein petitioners in a petition for certiorari and prohibition. Said petition, docketed as CA-G.R. SP No. 66894, alleged that the trial court gravely abused its discretion in ruling that the Republic of Indonesia gave its consent to be sued and voluntarily submitted itself to the laws and jurisdiction of Philippine courts and that petitioners Ambassador Soeratmin and Minister Counsellor Kasim waived their immunity from suit.

    On May 30, 2002, the Court of Appeals rendered its assailed decision denying the petition for lack of merit. 6 On August 16, 2002, it denied herein petitioners’ motion for reconsideration. 7

    Hence, this petition.

    In the case at bar, petitioners raise the sole issue of whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in sustaining the trial court’s decision that petitioners have waived their immunity from suit by using as its basis the abovementioned provision in the Maintenance Agreement.

    The petition is impressed with merit.

    International law is founded largely upon the principles of reciprocity, comity, independence, and equality of States which were adopted as part of the law of our land under Article II, Section 2 of the 1987 Constitution. 8 The rule that a State may not be sued without its consent is a necessary consequence of the principles of independence and equality of States. 9 As enunciated in Sanders v. Veridiano II, 10 the practical justification for the doctrine of sovereign immunity is that there can be no legal right against the authority that makes the law on which the right depends. In the case of foreign States, the rule is derived from the principle of the sovereign equality of States, as expressed in the maxim par in parem non habet imperium. All states are sovereign equals and cannot assert jurisdiction over one another. 11 A contrary attitude would "unduly vex the peace of nations." 12

    The rules of International Law, however, are neither unyielding nor impervious to change. The increasing need of sovereign States to enter into purely commercial activities remotely connected with the discharge of their governmental functions brought about a new concept of sovereign immunity. This concept, the restrictive theory, holds that the immunity of the sovereign is recognized only with regard to public acts or acts jure imperii, but not with regard to private acts or acts jure gestionis. 13

    In United States v. Ruiz, 14 for instance, we held that the conduct of public bidding for the repair of a wharf at a United States Naval Station is an act jure imperii. On the other hand, we considered as an act jure gestionis the hiring of a cook in the recreation center catering to American servicemen and the general public at the John Hay Air Station in Baguio City, 15 as well as the bidding for the operation of barber shops in Clark Air Base in Angeles City. 16

    Apropos the present case, the mere entering into a contract by a foreign State with a private party cannot be construed as the ultimate test of whether or not it is an act jure imperii or jure gestionis. Such act is only the start of the inquiry. Is the foreign State engaged in the regular conduct of a business? If the foreign State is not engaged regularly in a business or commercial activity, and in this case it has not been shown to be so engaged, the particular act or transaction must then be tested by its nature. If the act is in pursuit of a sovereign activity, or an incident thereof, then it is an act jure imperii. 17

    Hence, the existence alone, of a paragraph in a contract stating that any legal action arising out of the agreement shall be settled according to the laws of the Philippines and by a specified court of the Philippines is not necessarily a waiver of sovereign immunity from suit. The aforesaid provision contains language not necessarily inconsistent with sovereign immunity. On the other hand, such provision may also be meant to apply where the sovereign party elects to sue in the local courts, or otherwise waives its immunity by any subsequent act. The applicability of Philippine laws must be deemed to include Philippine laws in its totality, including the principle recognizing sovereign immunity. Hence, the proper court may have no proper action, by way of settling the case, except to dismiss it.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    Submission by a foreign state to local jurisdiction must be clear and unequivocal. It must be given explicitly or by necessary implication. We find no such waiver in this case.

    Respondent concedes that the establishment of a diplomatic mission is a sovereign function. On the other hand, he argues that the actual physical maintenance of the premises of the diplomatic mission, such as the upkeep of its furnishings and equipment, is no longer a sovereign function of the State. 18

    We disagree. There is no dispute that the establishment of a diplomatic mission is an act jure imperii. A sovereign State does not merely establish a diplomatic mission and leave it at that; the establishment of a diplomatic mission encompasses its maintenance and upkeep. Hence, the State may enter into contracts with private entities to maintain the premises, furnishings and equipment of the embassy and the living quarters of its agents and officials. It is therefore clear that petitioner Republic of Indonesia was acting in pursuit of a sovereign activity when it entered into a contract with respondent for the upkeep or maintenance of the air conditioning units, generator sets, electrical facilities, water heaters, and water motor pumps of the Indonesian Embassy and the official residence of the Indonesian ambassador.

    The Solicitor General, in his Comment, submits the view that, "the Maintenance Agreement was entered into by the Republic of Indonesia in the discharge of its governmental functions. In such a case, it cannot be deemed to have waived its immunity from suit." As to the paragraph in the agreement relied upon by respondent, the Solicitor General states that it "was not a waiver of their immunity from suit but a mere stipulation that in the event they do waive their immunity, Philippine laws shall govern the resolution of any legal action arising out of the agreement and the proper court in Makati City shall be the agreed venue thereof. 19

    On the matter of whether or not petitioners Ambassador Soeratmin and Minister Counsellor Kasim may be sued herein in their private capacities, Article 31 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations provides:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    x       x       x


    1. A diplomatic agent shall enjoy immunity from the criminal jurisdiction of the receiving State. He shall also enjoy immunity from its civil and administrative jurisdiction, except in the case of:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library

    (a) a real action relating to private immovable property situated in the territory of the receiving State, unless he holds it on behalf of the sending State for the purposes of the mission;

    (b) an action relating to succession in which the diplomatic agent is involved as executor, administrator, heir or legatee as a private person and not on behalf of the sending State;

    (c) an action relating to any professional or commercial activity exercised by the diplomatic agent in the receiving State outside his official functions.

    x       x       x


    The act of petitioners Ambassador Soeratmin and Minister Counsellor Kasim in terminating the Maintenance Agreement is not covered by the exceptions provided in the abovementioned provision.

    The Solicitor General believes that said act may fall under subparagraph (c) thereof, 20 but said provision clearly applies only to a situation where the diplomatic agent engages in any professional or commercial activity outside official functions, which is not the case herein.

    WHEREFORE, the petition is hereby GRANTED. The decision and resolution of the Court of Appeals in CA G.R. SP No. 66894 are REVERSED and SET ASIDE and the complaint in Civil Case No. 18203 against petitioners is DISMISSED.chanrob1es virtua1 1aw 1ibrary

    No costs.

    SO ORDERED.

    Davide, Jr., C.J., Bellosillo, Puno, Vitug, Panganiban, Quisumbing, Ynares-Santiago, Sandoval-Gutierrez, Carpio, Corona, Carpio Morales and Callejo, Sr., JJ., concur.

    Austria-Martinez, J., on official leave.

    Endnotes:



    1. Rollo, pp. 168–174.

    2. Rollo, p. 117.

    3. Rollo, pp. 101–108.

    4. Rollo, pp. 77–88.

    5. Rollo, pp. 127–131.

    6. Annex A of Petition; Rollo, pp. 29–39.

    7. Annex B of Petition; Rollo, p. 40.

    8. United States of America v. Guinto, 182 SCRA 644, 653 (1990).

    9. United States of America, Et. Al. v. Ruiz, 136 SCRA 487 (1987).

    10. 162 SCRA 88, 96 (1988).

    11. Supra note 8.

    12. Supra note 10 at 97.

    13. The Holy See v. Rosario, Et Al., 238 SCRA 524 (1994).

    14. Supra note 9.

    15. United States v. Rodrigo, 182 SCRA 644 (1990).

    16. Supra note 8.

    17. Supra note 14 at 536.

    18. Supra note 16 at 6; Rollo, p. 201.

    19. Comment, pp. 11, 17.

    20. Comment, p. 20.

    G.R. No. 154705   June 26, 2003 - REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA, ET AL. v. JAMES VINZON


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