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

 
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UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

 
PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT JURISPRUDENCE
 

   
July-2009 Jurisprudence                 

  • A.C. No. 6121 - TRINIDAD H. CAMARA, ET AL. v. ATTY. OSCAR AMONDY REYES

  • A.C. No. 7199 Formerly CBD 04-1386 - Foodsphere, Inc. v. Atty. Melanio L. Mauricio, Jr.

  • A.C. No. 7815 - Dolores C. Belleza v. Atty. Alan S. Macasa

  • A.C. No. 8243 - Rolando B. Pacana, Jr. v. Atty. Maricel Pascual-Lopez

  • A.C. No. 8252 - Natividad Uy v. Atty. Braulio RG Tansisin

  • A.M. No. 02-8-207-MTCC - Re: Report on the Judicial Audit Conducted in the Municipal Trial Court in Cities, Branch 2, Cagayan De Oro City

  • A.M. No. 03-7-170-MCTC - Re: Report on the Judicial Audit in Municipal Circuit Trial Court, Jiminez-Sinacaban, Misamis Occidental/ Judge Pricilla Hernandez

  • A.M. No. 08-3-73-MeTC - Re: Report on the Judicial Audit Conducted at the Metropolitan Trial Court, Branch 55, Malabon City

  • A.M. No. 08-4-4-SC - Re: Request of the Police Director General Avelino I. Razon for authority to delegate the endorsement of application for search warrant

  • A.M. No. 2008-24-SC - Re: Fighting incident between two(2) SC shutle bus drivers, namely, Messrs. Edilbert L. Idulsa and Ross C. Romero

  • A.M. No. MTJ-06-1651 - Prosecutor Robert M. Visbal v. Judge Wenceslao B. Vanilla, MTCC, Br. 2, Tacloban City

  • A.M. No. MTJ-08-1709 Formerly A.M. OCA IPI No. 02-1225-MTJ - Lanie Cervantes v. Judge Heriberto M. Pangilinan, and Clerk of Court III Carmencita P. Baloco, etc.

  • A.M. No. P-03-1677 & A.M. No. P-07-2317 - Liberty M. Toledo v. Liza Perez, Court Stenographer III, Office of the Clerk of Court, RTC, Manila

  • A.M. No. P-06-2212 - Geronimo Francisco v. Sebastian Bolivar, etc.

  • A.M. No. P-06-2217 Formerly OCA IPI No. 06-2375-P - Concerned Employees of the Municipal Trial Court of Meycauayan, Bulacan v. Larizza Paguio-Bacani, Branch COC II, MTC, Meycauayan, Bulacan

  • A.M. No. P-06-2219 Formerly A.M. No. 06-7-392-RTC - Office of the Court Administrator v. Officer-in-charge and Legal Researcher Nilda Cinco, RTC, Br. 28, Catbalogan, Samar

  • A.M. No. P-06-2245 Formerly OCA IPI NO. 06-2373-P and A.M. NO. MTJ-09-1741 Formerly OCA IPI No. 06-1853-MTJ : July 31, 2009 - Judge Jaime L. Dojillo, Jr. v. Concepcion Z. Ching, etc.

  • A.M. No. P-08-2578 Formerly OCA I.P.I. No. 08-2924-P - Gaspar R. Dutosme v. Atty. Rey D. Caayona

  • A.M. No. P-09-2644 Formerly OCA IPI No. 08-2787-P - Edgardo A. Quilo v. Rogelio G. Jundarino, Sheriff III, Metropolitan Trail Court, Branch 19, Manila

  • A.M. No. P-08-2132 Formerly A.M. OCA IPI No. 07-2549-RTJ - Atty. Florencio Alay Binalay v. Judge Elias O. Lelina, Jr.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-08-2158 Formerly OCA IPI No. 04-2018-RTJ - Alfredo Favor v. Judge Cesar O. Untalan, RTC, Branch 149, Makati City

  • A.M. No. RTJ-09-2175 - Venancio Inonog v. Judge Francisco B. Ibay, Presiding Judge, Regional Trial Court, Branch 135, Makati City

  • A.M. No. RTJ-09-2183 Formerly A.M. OCA IPI No. 05-2346-RTJ - Concerned Lawyers of Bulacan v. Presiding Judge Pornillos, RTC Br. 10, Malolos City.

  • A.M. No. RTJ-09-2186 Formerly A.M. OCA-IPI No. 03-1893-RTJ and A.M. No. RTJ-09-2187 Formerly A.M. OCA IPI No. 04-1993-RTJ - Atty. Nelson T. Antolin, et al. v. Judge Alex L. Quiroz, et al.

  • G.R. No. 141888 - Melba Rose R. Sasot v. Amado Yuson, et al.

  • G.R. No. 147957 - Privatization Management Office v. Legaspi Towers 300, Inc.

  • G.R. No. 148600 - Atty. Emmanuel Pontejos v. Hon. Aniano Desierto and Restituto Aquino

  • G.R. No. 149763 - Eduardo J. Mari o, Jr. et al. v. Gil Y. Gamilla, et al.

  • G.R. No. 150228 - Bank of America NT & SA v. Philippine Racing Club

  • G.R. No. 151424 - Eagle Realty Corporation v. Republic of the Philippines, etc., et al.

  • G.R. No. 151973 - National Power Corporation v. Sps. Lorenzo L. Laohoo, et al.

  • G.R. No. 152263 - Arthur Zarate v. Regional Trial Court, Br. Gingoog City, Misamis Oriental

  • G.R. No. 152496 - Sps. German Anunciacion, et al. v. Perpetua M. Bocanegra, et al.

  • G.R. No. 155491 - Smart Communications, Inc., v. The City of Davao, represented by its Mayor Hon. Rodrigo Duterte and the Sangguniang Panlunsod of Davao City

  • G.R. No. 156946 - Secretary of Finance v. Oro Maura Shipping Lines

  • G.R. No. 157607 - Land Bank of the Philippines v. Rowena O. Paden

  • G.R. No. 159131 - Heirs of Toribio Waga, represented by Merba A. Waga v. Isabelo Sacabin

  • G.R. No. 159358 - Eureka Personnel and Management Corp., and Nari K. Gidwani v. The Hon. National Labor Relations Commission, et al.

  • G.R. No. 159624 - Cebu Mactan Members Center, Inc. v. Masahiro Tsukahara

  • G.R. NOS. 160243-52 - Romeo D. Lonzanida v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 160265 - Nely T. Co. v. People of the Philippines, et al.

  • G.R. No. 160380 - Sps. Eduardo & Leticia Monta o v. Rosalina Francisco, et al

  • G.R. No. 160772 - Hilario P. Soriano v. Ombudsman Simeon V. Marcelo, et al.

  • G.R. No. 161051 - Compania General de Tabacos De Filipinas and La Flor De La Isabela, inc. v. Hon. Virgilio A. Sevandal, et al.

  • G.R. No. 161062 - Republic of the Philippines v. Ferventino U, Tango

  • G.R. No. 161238 - Heirs of Jose G. Santiago, namely: Julia G. Santiago, et al. v. Aurea G. Santiago, et al.

  • G.R. No. 161748 - Spouses Francisco and Betty Wong and Spouses Joaquin and Lolita Wong v. City of Iloilo, et al.

  • G.R. No. 162074 - Cecilleville Realty and Service Corporation v. Spouses Tito Acu a, et al.

  • G.R. No. 162540 - Gemma T. Jacinto v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 162721 - Petronila Maylem v. Carmelita Ellano and Antonia Morciento

  • G.R. No. 162738 - Sps. Elizabeth S. Tagle Ernesto R. Tagle v. Hon. Court of Appeals, RTC, Quezon City, Branch 97, Sps. Federico and Rosamyrna Carandang and Shriff Carol Bulacan

  • G.R. No. 162836 - Cerefina Argallon-Jocson and Rodolfo Tuising v. Maria Cristina Fertilizer Corporation and/or Marcelo Steel Corporation

  • G.R. No. 164244 - National Housing Authority v. Reynaldo Magat

  • G.R. No. 164315 - Alcatel Philippines, Inc. v. Rene R. Relos

  • G.R. No. 164560 - Ana De Guia San Pedro, et al. v. Hon. Fatima G. Asdala (etc.), et al.

  • G.R. No. 164800 - Republic of the Philippines v. Estate of Alfonso Lim, Sr., et al.

  • G.R. No. 164817 - Digna A. Najera v. Eduardo J. Najera

  • G.R. No. 164968 - Gloria Ocampo, et al. v. Land Bank of the Philippines, et al.

  • G.R. No. 165448 - Ernesto Aquino v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 165568 - Government Service Insurance System v. Abraham Lopez

  • G.R. No. 165678 - Rosario Panuncio v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 165907 - Spouses Dominador R. Narvaez and Lilia W. Narvaez v. Spouses Rose Ogas Alciso and Antonio Alciso

  • G.R. No. 166198 - Marcelino A. Magdadaro v. Philippine National Bank

  • G.R. No. 166553 - Republic of the Philippines, represented by the National Power Corporation v. Sps. Ruperto and Sonia S. Libuano, et al.

  • G.R. No. 166640 - Herminio Mariano, Jr. v. Ildefonso C. Callejas and Edgar De Borja

  • G.R. No. 166705 - Mantle Trading Services, Incorporated and/or Bobby Del Rosario v. National Labor Relations Commission and Pablo S. Madriaga

  • G.R. No. 166734 - Mandy Commodities Co., Inc. v. The International Commercial Bank of China

  • G.R. No. 166988 - Heirs of Emiliano San Pedro, etc. v. Pablito Garcia and Jose Calderon

  • G.R. No. 167232 - D.B.T. Mar-Bay Construction Incorporated v. Ricaredo Panes, et al.

  • G.R. No. 167546 - Sonny Romero y Dominguez v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 167809 - Land Bank of the Philippines v. Josefina R. Dumlao, et al.

  • G.R. No. 168406 - Club Filipino, Inc. and Atty. Roberto F. De Leon v. Benjamin Bautista, et al.

  • G.R. No. 169519 - Irenorio B. Balaba v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 169700 - In the Matter of the Allowance of the Will of Moises F. Banayad Apolonia Banayad Frianela v. Servillano Banayad, Jr.

  • G.R. No. 169878 - People of the Philippines v. Jesus Obero

  • G.R. No. 170014 - Renita Del Rosario, et al. v. Makati Cinema Square Corporation

  • G.R. No. 170472 - People of the Philippines v. Jojo Musa y Santos, et al.

  • G.R. NOS. 170615-16 - The Repuclic of the Philippines, represented by the Office of the Ombudsman, Ma. Merceditas N. Gutierrez, in her capacity as the Ombudsman v. Rufino V. Maijares, Roberto G. Ferrera, Alfredo M. Ruba and Romeo Querubin.

  • G.R. No. 171275 - Victor Meteoro, et al. v. Creative Creatures, Inc.

  • G.R. No. 171386 - Gloria R. Motos and Martin Motos v. Real Bank (A Thrift Bank), Inc.

  • G.R. No. 171586 - National Power Corporation v. Province of Quezon and Municipality of Pabgilao

  • G.R. No. 171655 - People of the Philippines v. Pablo L. Estacio, Jr. and Maritess Ang

  • G.R. No. 171842 - Gloria S. Dy v. Mandy Commodities Co., Inc.

  • G.R. No. 171968 - XYST Corporation v. DMC Urban Properties Development, Inc., Fe Aurora C. Castro (Intervenor)

  • G.R. No. 172174 - Davao Contractors Development Cooperative (DACODECO), represented by Chairman of the Board Engr. L. Chavez v. Marilyn A. Pasawa.

  • G.R. No. 172212 - Rafael Rondina v. Court of Appeals formet special 19th Division, unicraft Industries International Corp., Inc. Robert Dino, Cristina Dino, Michael Lloyd Dino, Allan Dino and Mylene June Dino.

  • G.R. No. 172342 - LWV Construction Corporation v. Marcelo B. Dupo

  • G.R. No. 172574 - Noli Lim v. Angelito Delos Santos, etc., Denia R. Adoyo, et al., (Intervenors) Gloria Murillo, et al., (Protestants)

  • G.R. No. 172640 - Victoriano Dela Pe a, et al. v. Spouses Vicente Alonzo, et al.

  • G.R. No. 172796 - Sps. Artemio and Esperanza Aduan v. Levi Chong

  • G.R. No. 173252 - Unisource Commercial and Development Corporation v. Joseph Chung, et al.

  • G.R. No. 173654-765 - People of the Philippines v. Teresita Puig and Romeo Porras

  • G.R. No. 174154 - Jesus Cuenco v. Talisay Tourist Sprots Complex, Incorporated and Matias B. Aznar III

  • G.R. No. 174238 - Anita Cheng v. Souses William and Tessie Sy

  • G.R. No. 174364 - Northwest Airlines v. Delfin S. Catapang

  • G.R. No. 174370 - People of the Philippines v. Willy Mardo Ganoy y Mamayabay

  • G.R. No. 174610 - Soriamont Steamship Agencies, Inc., et al. v. Sprint Transport Services, inc. etc.

  • G.R. No. 174803 - Marywin Albano-Sales v. Mayor Reynolan T. Sales and Court of Appeals

  • G.R. No. 174830 - Isabelita Vda. De Dayao and Heirs of Vicente Dayao v. Heirs of Gavino Robles, namely: Placida vda. De Robles, et al.

  • G.R. No. 174986, G.R. NO. 175071 and G.R. NO. 181415 - Armand O. Raquel-Santos, et al. v. Court of Appeals, et al.

  • G.R. No. 175352 - Dante Liban, et al. v. Richard J. Gordon

  • G.R. No. 175551 - Republic of the Philippines represented by the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) v. Hon. Francisco G. Mendioal, etc.

  • G.R. No. 175677 and G.R. NO. 177133 - Spouses Azucena B. Corpuz and Renato S. Corpuz v. Citibank, N.A. et al.

  • G.R. No. 175910 - Atty. Rogelio E. Sarsaba v. Fe vda De Te, represented by her Attorney-in-Fact Faustino Casta eda

  • G.R. No. 177007 - Sansio Philippines, Inc. v. Sps. Alicia Leodegario Mogol, Jr.

  • G.R. No. 177181 - Rabaja Ranch and Development Corporation v. AFP Retirement and Separation Benefits System

  • G.R. No. 177430 and G.R. NO. 178935 - Rene M. Francisco v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 177594 - University of San Agustin, Inc. v. University of San Agustin Employees Union-FFW

  • G.R. No. 177624 - Modesta Luna v. Juliana P. Luna, et al.

  • G.R. No. 177728 - Jenie San Juan Dela Cruz, et al., etc., v. Ronald Paul S. Gracia, etc.

  • G.R. No. 177766 - People of the Philippines v. Claro Jampas

  • G.R. No. 177768 - People of the Philippines v. Charmen Olivo y Along, Nelson Danda y Sambuto and Joey Zafra y Reyes

  • G.R. No. 177847 - Laurence M. Sison v. Eusebia Cariaga

  • G.R. No. 178058 - People of the Philippines v. Jessie Maliao y Masakit, Norberto Chiong y Discotido and Luciano Bohol y Gamana, Jessie Maliao y Masakit(Accused-Appellant)

  • G.R. No. 178205 - People of the Philippines v. Leo Quemeggen, Juanito De Luna

  • G.R. No. 178330 - Martin T. Sagarbarria v. Philippine Business Bank

  • G.R. No. 178490 - Commissioner of Internal Revenue v. Bank of the Philippine Islands

  • G.R. No. 178760 - Carmen B. Dy-Dumalasa v. Domingo Sabado S. Fernandez, et al.

  • G.R. NOS. 178831-32, G.R. No. 179120, G.R. NOS. 179132-33 and G.R. NOS. 179240-41 - Limkaichong v. Comission on Election

  • G.R. No. 178976 - Abelardo P. Abel v. Philex Mining Corporation represented by Fernando Agustin

  • G.R. No. 179061 - Sheala P. Matrido v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 179154 - People of the Philippines v. Roger Perez and Danilo Perez

  • G.R. No. 179177 - Carlos N. Nisda v. Sea Serve Maritime Agency, et al.

  • G.R. No. 179187 - People of the Philippines v. Renato Talusan y Panganiban

  • G.R. No. 179430 - Jamela Salic Maruhom v. Commssion on Elections and Mohammad Ali "Mericano" A. Abinal

  • G.R. No. 179271 and G.R. No. 179295 - BANAT v. Commission on Election

  • G.R. No. 179512 - Eagle Star Security Services, Inc. v. Bonifacio L. Mirando.

  • G.R. No. 179546 - Coca-Cola Bottlers Phils, Inc. v. Alan M. Agito, Regolo S. Oca III, et al.

  • G.R. No. 179653 - United Muslim and Christian Urban Poor Association, Inc., etc. v. BRYC-V Development Corporation, etc., et al.

  • G.R. No. 179674 - Pyro Coppermining Corporation v. Mines Adjudication Board-Department of Environment and Natural Resources, et al.

  • G.R. No. 179807 - Ramy Gallego v. Bayer Philippines, Inc., et al.

  • G.R. No. 179937 - The People of the Philippines v. Gerald Librea y Camitan

  • G.R. No. 180043 - Commissioner of Internal Revenue v. Philippine Airline, Inc. (PAL)

  • G.R. No. 180055 and G.R. No. 183055 - Franklin M. Drilon, et al. v. Hon. Jose de Venecia, Jr., et al.

  • G.R. No. 180066 - Commissioner of Internal Revenue v. Philippine Airlines, Inc.

  • G.R. No. 180458 - Development Bank of the Philippines v. Family Foods Manufacturing Co. Ltd. and Spouses Juliano and Catalina Centeno

  • G.R. No. 180465 - Eric Dela Cruz and Paul M. Lacuata v. Coca-Cola Bottlers Phils.

  • G.R. No. 180528 - Civil Service Commission v. Nelia O. Tahanlangit

  • G.R. No. 180568 - Lydia Montebon a.k.a. Jingle Montebon v. The Honorable Court of Appeals, et al.

  • G.R. No. 180675 - Virgilio Bote v. San Pedro Cineplex Properties Corporation

  • G.R. No. 181235 - Banco De Oro-EPCI, Inc. v. John Tansipek

  • G.R. No. 181393 - Grandteq Industrial Steel Products, Inc. and Abelardo M. Gonzales v. Edna Margallo

  • G.R. No. 181478 - Eddie T. Panlilio v. Commission on Elections and Lilia G. Pineda

  • G.R. No. 181531 - National Union of Workers in Hotels Restaurant and Allied Industries-Manila Pavilion Hotel Chapter v. Secretary of Labor and Employment, et al.

  • G.R. No. 182420 - People of the Philippines v. Elsie Barba

  • G.R .No. 182454 - People of the Philippines v. Felix Wasit

  • G.R. No. 182485 - Sps. Henry O and Pacita Cheng v. Sps. Jose Javier and Claudia Dailisan

  • G.R. No. 182567 - Guillermo M. Telmo v. Luciano M. Bustamante

  • G.R. No. 182687 - People of the Philippines v. Warlito Martinez

  • G.R. No. 182941 - Roberto Sierra y Caneda v. People of the Philippines

  • G.R. No. 183105 - Erna Casals, et al. v. Tayud Golf and Country Club, et al..

  • G.R. No. 183819 - People of the Philippines v. Arsenio Cortez y Macalindong a.k.a. "Archie"

  • G.R. No. 184586 - Rafael Flauta, Jr., et al. v. Commission on Elections, et al.

  • G.R. No. 184801 - Jonas Taguiam v. Commission on Election, et al.

  • G.R. No. 184948 - Cong. Glenn A. Chong, Mr. Charles Chong, and Mr. Romeo Arribe v. Hon. Philip L. Dela Cruz, et al.

  • G.R. No. 185035 - Government Service Insurance System v. Salvador A. De Castro

  • G.R. No. 185063 - Sps. Lita De Leon, et al. v. Anita B. De Leon, et al.

  • G.R. No. 185095 - Maria Susan L. Ra ola, et al. v. Spouses Fernando & Ma. Concepcion M. Ra ola

  • G.R. No. 185220 - Laguna Metts Corporation v. Court of Appeals, Aries C. Caalam and Geraldine Esguerra

  • G.R. No. 185389 - People of the Philippines v. Benjie Resurrection

  • G.R. No. 185401 - Henry "June" Due as, Jr. v. House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal and Angelito "Jett" P. Reyes

  • G.R. NO. 186007 and G.R. No. 186016 - Salvador Divinagracia, Jr. v. Commission on Elections and Alex A. Centena

  • G.R. No. 187152 - People of the Philippines v. Teodulo Villanueva, Jr.

  • UDK-14071 - Martin Gibbs Fletcher v. The Director of Bureau of Corrections or his representative

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    G.R. No. 179937 - The People of the Philippines v. Gerald Librea y Camitan

      G.R. No. 179937 - The People of the Philippines v. Gerald Librea y Camitan

    PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

    SECOND DIVISION

    [G.R. NO. 179937 : July 17, 2009]

    PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. GERALD LIBREA, Appellant.

    D E C I S I O N

    CARPIO MORALES, J.:

    Gerald Librea (appellant) was charged and convicted by the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Lipa City, Batangas of violation of Section 5, Article II of Republic Act (RA) No. 9165.

    The Information against appellant reads:

    That on or about the 9th day of October 2003 at about 7:30 o'clock [sic] in the evening at Basang Hamog, Barangay 1, Lipa City, Philippines, the above-named accused, without authority of law, did then and there willfully, unlawfully sell, deliver, dispose or give away to a police officer/informer-poseur buyer, 0.04 grams/s of Methamphetamine Hydrochloride locally known as "shabu", which is a dangerous drug, contained in one (1) plastic sachet/s.1 (Underscoring supplied)cralawlibrary

    At the pre-trial, appellant admitted, among other things, the "authenticity and due execution of Chemistry Report No. D-2424-03 prepared by P/Sr. Insp. Lorna R. Tria, but den[ied] that the specimen subject matter thereof came from [him]."2

    From the testimonies of prosecution witnesses PChief Insp. Dante Novicio (Novicio) and SPO1 Alexander Yema (Yema) of the Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operation Task Force (Task Force) of the Lipa City Police Station, the following version is gathered:3

    On receipt from an "asset-informant" by Novicio of information that appellant was actively pushing drugs in various areas of Lipa City, surveillance and a test-buy was conducted which validated the information.ςηαñrοblεš νιr†υαl lαω lιbrαrÿ

    A buy-bust operation was soon conducted on October 9, 2003 at around 7:30 in the evening at "a squatters area" in Basang Hamog, Barangay 1, Lipa City, about 30 meters from the police station. Novicio, Yema, and PO1 Cleofe Pera (Cleofe), in the company of the informant who was given two P100 bills on which were marked "DPN" beside their serial numbers,4 repaired to Basang Hamog. As the informant approached appellant who was standing by a store, Novicio, Yema, and Cleofe positioned themselves at a spot seven to ten meters away from appellant.

    After the informant spoke to appellant to whom he gave the marked bills, appellant handed him a small plastic sachet which he scrutinized and brought to the members of the buy-bust team. Soon after Yema received the sachet and smelled it to be shabu, he, Novicio, and Cleofe approached appellant, introduced themselves as members of the police force, informed him of his rights, arrested him, and conducted a body search which yielded the two marked P100 bills.

    Appellant was thereupon brought to the police station where Yema marked the sachet with "ACY" (representing his initials) on one side and "GCL" (representing the initials of appellant) on the other. Cleofe at once prepared the Inventory of Confiscated/Seized Items (Inventory)5 on which appellant refused to affix his signature and a request for laboratory examination.

    Upon the other hand, appellant gave his version as follows:6

    After 7:00 in the evening of October 9, 2003, while he was at the store of his aunt Ester Calingasan (Ester) waiting for the pancit which he had ordered, three police officers arrived, arrested him, and forcibly took him to the police headquarters where he was detained. No test-buy or buy-bust operation took place. He saw the Inventory and the plastic sachet for the first time during the trial.

    Ester corroborated appellant's testimony, adding that after he was arrested, she fetched his mother and accompanied her to the police headquarters where appellant was detained.

    Branch 12 of the Lipa City RTC convicted appellant as charged, disposing as follows:

    WHEREFORE, the Court finds the accused, GERALD LIBREA y CAMITAN, guilty beyond reasonable doubt, as principal by direct participation, of the crime of Violation [of] Section 5, 1st paragraph, Article II of Republic Act No. 9165, otherwise known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 and sentences him to suffer the penalty of LIFE IMPRISONMENT and pay a fine of P500,000.00 and the costs.

    The 0.04 gram of methamphetamine hydrochloride subject of this case is forfeited in favor of the government and ordered turned over to the Chief of Police of Lipa City for proper disposal in accordance with law.

    Also, let the corresponding commitment order be issued for the transfer of detention of the accused to the Bureau of Correction, Muntinlupa City, Metro Manila.

    Given this 14th day of September, 2005 at Lipa City.7

    Before the Court of Appeals, appellant faulted the trial court

    I

    x x x IN CONVICTING [HIM] FOR VIOLATION OF SECTION 5, ARTICLE II OF R.A. 9165 NOTWITHSTANDING THE NON-PRESENTATION OF THE POSEUR-BUYER.

    II

    x x x IN GIVING CREDENCE TO THE TESTIMONIES OF THE PROSECUTION POLICE WITNESSES NOTWITHSTANDING THE IRREGULARITIES IN THE PERFORMANCE OF THEIR DUTIES.

    III

    x x x IN FINDING [HIM] GUILTY OF THE CRIME CHARGED DESPITE THE FAILURE OF THE PROSECUTION TO PROVE HIS GUILT BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT.8 (Underscoring supplied)cralawlibrary

    By Decision9 of June 29, 2007, the Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court's decision, hence, the present appeal.10 Both appellant and the Solicitor General adopted their respective arguments in the Briefs they had filed before the appellate court.11

    Appellant assails, among other things, the failure of the buy-bust team to photograph the allegedly confiscated sachet and to have a representative of the media as well as of the Department of Justice (DOJ) sign the Inventory of Confiscated/Seized Items, as required under Section 21 of RA 9165.12

    Non-compliance by the apprehending/buy-bust team with Section 21 of R.A. No. 9165 is not fatal as long as there is justifiable ground therefor and the integrity and the evidentiary value of the confiscated/seized items are properly preserved by the apprehending officer/team.13

    The prosecution justifies the failure of the buy-bust team to have the confiscated sachet photographed with the non-availability of a photographer.14 And it claims that no DOJ, as well as media representative, arrived at the time and after the buy-bust operation took place. Without passing on the merits of this claim, the Court finds that the integrity, as well as the evidentiary value of the confiscated item, was not shown to have been preserved.

    While Yema claimed to have marked the plastic sachet at the police station, what was done to it afterwards remains unexplained.

    And there is no showing that the substance allegedly confiscated was the same substance which was subjected to examination.15 As earlier mentioned, while during pre-trial appellant admitted the authenticity and due execution of the laboratory report, he denied that the specimen subject thereof was taken from him.

    More. The request for forensic examination, together with the specimen, was delivered to the laboratory by a certain SPO4 D.R. Mercado (Mercado),16 who was not part of the buy-bust team, at 11:15 in the morning of October 10, 2003, a day after the conduct of the alleged buy-bust operation. There is no showing, however, under what circumstances Mercado, who did not take the witness stand, came into possession of the specimen. Apropos is the Court's ruling in People v. Ong:17

    x x x [T]he Memorandum-Request for Laboratory Examination . . . indicates that a certain SPO4 Castro submitted the specimen for examination. However, the rest of the records of the case failed to show the role of SPO4 Castro in the buy-bust operation, if any. x x x

    x x x Since SPO4 Castro appears not to be part of the buy-bust team, how and when did he get hold of the specimen examined by Police Inspector Eustaquio? Who entrusted the substance to him and requested him to submit it for examination? For how long was he in possession of the evidence before he turned it over to the PNP Crime Laboratory? Who else had access to the specimen from the time it was allegedly taken from appellants when arrested? These questions should be answered satisfactorily to determine whether the integrity of the evidence was compromised in any way. Otherwise, the prosecution cannot maintain that it was able to prove the guilt of the appellants beyond reasonable doubt.18 (Emphasis and underscoring supplied)cralawlibrary

    On this score alone, the Court finds that the prosecution failed to prove beyond reasonable doubt the guilt of appellant. His acquittal is thus in order.

    WHEREFORE, the Decision of the Court of Appeals dated June 29, 2007 is REVERSED and SET ASIDE. Appellant, GERALD LIBREA, is ACQUITTED of the crime charged and is ordered released from custody, unless he is being held for some other lawful cause.

    Let a copy of this Decision be furnished the Director of the Bureau of Corrections, Muntinlupa City, who is DIRECTED to implement it immediately and to inform this Court within five (5) days of action taken.

    SO ORDERED.

    Endnotes:


    * Additional member per Special Order No. 658.

    ** Additional member per Special Order No. 635.

    1 Records, p. 3.

    2 Id. at 21.

    3 Vide TSN, June 2, 2004, pp. 2-15, TSN, September 6, 2004, pp. 2-17, TSN, December 13, 2004, pp. 2-20.

    4 Exhibit "C," Exhibits for the Prosecution.

    5 Exhibit "A," Exhibits for the Prosecution.

    6 TSN, July 6, 2005, pp. 2-17; TSN, August 17, 2005, pp. 2-14.

    7 Records, p. 91.

    8 CA rollo, p. 33.

    9 Penned by Court of Appeals Associate Justice Marina L. Buzon, with the concurrence of Court of Appeals Associate Justices Rosmari D. Carandang and Mariflor P. Punzalan-Castillo, id. at 87-94.

    10 Id. at 97-98.

    11 Rollo, pp. 22-24, 31-35.

    12 Vide CA rollo, pp. 40-41.

    13 Vide People v. Pringas, G.R. No. 175928, August 31, 2007, 531 SCRA 828, 842.

    14 TSN, June 2, 2004, pp. 11-12.

    15 Vide People v. Ong, G.R. No. 137348, June 21, 2004, 432 SCRA 470, 488.

    16 Exhs. "B" - "B-1," Exhibits for the Prosecution.

    17 People v. Ong, G.R. No. 137348, June 21, 2004, 432 SCRA 470.

    18 Id. at 489-490.

    G.R. No. 179937 - The People of the Philippines v. Gerald Librea y Camitan


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