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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
 

 
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April-2011 Jurisprudence                 

  • [G.R. No. 171406, April 04 : 2011] ASIAN TERMINALS, INC., PETITIONER, VS. MALAYAN INSURANCE, CO., INC., RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 160949, April 04 : 2011] COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE, PETITIONER, VS. PL MANAGEMENT INTERNATIONAL PHILIPPINES, INC., RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 158362, April 04 : 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. GILBERTO VILLARICO, SR. @ "BERTING", GILBERTO VILLARICO, JR., JERRY RAMENTOS, AND RICKY VILLARICO, ACCUSED-APPELLANTS.

  • [G.R. No. 187534, April 04 : 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. DIMA MONTANIR, RONALD NORVA AND EDUARDO CHUA, ACCUSED-APPELLANTS.

  • [G.R. No. 149193, April 04 : 2011] RICARDO B. BANGAYAN, PETITIONER, VS. RIZAL COMMERCIAL BANKING CORPORATION AND PHILIP SARIA, RESPONDENTS,

  • [G.R. No. 190823, April 04 : 2011] DOMINGO CARABEO, PETITIONER, VS.SPOUSES NORBERTO AND SUSAN DINGCO, RESPONDENTS.

  • [A.M. No. P-11-2922 (formerly A.M. OCA IPI No. 03-1778-P), April 04 : 2011] MARY JANE ABANAG, COMPLAINANT, VS. NICOLAS B. MABUTE, COURT APRIL 4, 2011 STENOGRAPHER I, MUNICIPAL CIRCUIT TRIAL COURT (MCTC), PARANAS, SAMAR, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 167022, April 04 : 2011] LICOMCEN INCORPORATED, PETITIONER, VS. FOUNDATION SPECIALISTS, INC., RESPONDENT. [G.R. NO. 169678] FOUNDATION SPECIALISTS, INC., PETITIONER, VS. LICOMCEN INCORPORATED, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 171497, April 04 : 2011] MARIA LOURDES TAMANI, CONCEPCION TAMANI, ESTRELLA TAMANI, TERESITA TAMANI, AZUCENA SOLEDAD, DOLORES GUERRERO, CRISTINA TUGADE DAMIETA MANSAANG, MANUEL TAMANI, VALERIANA CASTRO, AURORA SANTIAGO AND ROSARIO CASTILLO, PETITIONERS, VS. ROMAN SALVADOR AND FILOMENA BRAVO, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G. R. No. 164195, April 05 : 2011] APO FRUITS CORPORATION AND HIJO PLANTATION, INC., PETITIONERS, VS. LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 178406, April 06 : 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. RONALDO SALUDO, ACCUSED-APPELLANT.

  • [G.R. No. 189980, April 06 : 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. ALBERTO BACUS ALCUIZAR, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.

  • [G.R. No. 169564, April 06 : 2011] AMES BEN L. JERUSALEM PETITIONER, VS. KEPPEL MONTE BANK, HOE ENG HOCK, SUNNY YAP AND JOSEFINA PICART, RESPONDENTS.

  • [A.M. No. P-10-2791 (formerly A.M. No. 10-3-91-RTC), April 06 : 2011] JUDGE RENATO A. FUENTES, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, BRANCH 17, DAVAO CITY, COMPLAINANT, VS. ATTY. ROGELIO F. FABRO, BRANCH CLERK OF COURT, SAME COURT, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 170166, April 06 : 2011] JOE A. ROS AND ESTRELLA AGUETE, PETITIONERS, VS. PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK - LAOAG BRANCH, RESPONDENT.

  • [A.C. No. 7771, April 06 : 2011] PATRICIO GONE, COMPLAINANT, VS. ATTY. MACARIO GA, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 188715, April 06 : 2011] RODOLFO N. REGALA, PETITIONER, VS. FEDERICO P. CARIN, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 163039, April 06 : 2011] HEIRS OF FRANCISCO RETUYA, FELICITAS R. PINTOR, HEIRS OF EPIFANIA R. SEMBLANTE, NAMELY, PREMILINO SEMBLANTE, LUCIFINA S. TAGALOG, URSULINA S. ALMACEN; HEIRS OF JUAN RETUYA, NAMELY, BALBINA R. RODRIGUEZ, DOLORES R. RELACION, SINFOROSA R. BASUBAS, TEOPISTA R. BASUBAS, FERNANDO RETUYA, BALDOMERO RETUYA, TEOFILO RETUYA, LEONA COLINA, FIDELA R. RAMIREZ, MARTINA R. ALBAÑO, SEVERINA R. CABAHUG; HEIRS OF RAFAELA VILLAMOR; ELIZABETH V. ALESNA; HEIRS OF QUINTIN RETUYA, NAMELY, FELIMON RETUYA, SOFIA RETUYA, RUDOLFA RETUYA AND ELISA RETUYA, PETITIONERS, VS. HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS, HON. ULRIC CAÑETE AS PRESIDING JUDGE OF REGIONAL TRIAL COURT BRANCH 55, MANDAUE CITY, NICOLAS RETUYA; HEIRS OF EULOGIO RETUYA, NAMELY, MIGUEL RETUYA, RAMON RETUYA, GIL RETUYA, PIO RETUYA, MELANIO RETUYA, NICANOR RETUYA, LEONILA RETUYA, AQUILINA RETUYA, LUTGARDA RETUYA AND PROCOPIO VILLANUEVA, RESPONDENTS.

  • [A.M. No. RTJ-11-2279 (Formerly OCA IPI No. 08-3041-RTJ ), April 06 : 2011] FLORENCE EBERSOLE DEL MAR- SCHUCHMAN, COMPLAINANT, VS. JUDGE EFREN M. CACATIAN, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, BRANCH 35, SANTIAGO CITY, ISABELA, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 156684, April 06 : 2011] SPOUSES ANTONIO AND FE YUSAY, PETITIONERS, VS. COURT OF APPEALS, CITY MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL OF MANDALUYONG CITY, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 171129, April 06 : 2011] ENRICO SANTOS, PETITIONER, VS. NATIONAL STATISTICS OFFICE, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 180173, April 06 : 2011] MICROSOFT PHILIPPINES, INC., PETITIONER, VS. COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 182967, April 06 : 2011] PHILIPPINE NATIONAL RAILWAYS, PETITIONER, VS. KANLAON CONSTRUCTION ENTERPRISES CO., INC., RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 169627, April 06 : 2011] ROSEMARIE SALMA ARAGONCILLO-MOLOK, PETITIONER, VS. SITY AISA BARANGAI MOLOK, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 161204, April 06 : 2011] NATIONAL HOUSING AUTHORITY, PETITIONER, VS. HON. VICENTE Q. ROXAS (PRESIDING JUDGE OF REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, QUEZON CITY, BRANCH 227,) REGISTER OF DEEDS OF QUEZON CITY, LAND REGISTRATION AUTHORITY, OFFICE OF THE CITY, DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES, AND THE COURT OF APPEALS, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 189457, April 07 : 2011] SUNRISE HOLIDAY CONCEPTS, INC., Petitioner, vs. TERESA A. ARUGAY, Respondent.

  • [G.R. No. 186070, April 11 : 2011] CLIENTLOGIC PHILPPINES, INC. (NOW KNOWN AS SITEL), JOSEPH VELASQUEZ, IRENE ROA AND RODNEY SPIRES, PETITIONERS, VS. BENEDICT CASTRO, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 191008, April 11 : 2011] QUIRICO LOPEZ, PETITIONER, VS. ALTURAS GROUP OF COMPANIES AND/OR MARLITO UY, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 192188, April 11 : 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. ANDREW ROBLE, ACCUSED-APPELLANT.

  • [G.R. No. 174861, April 11 : 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, APPELLEE, VS. REYNALDO OLESCO Y ANDAYANG,[1] APPELLANT.

  • [G.R. No. 178635, April 11 : 2011] SERVILLANO E. ABAD, PETITIONER, VS. OSCAR C. FARRALES AND DAISY C. FARRALES-VILLAMAYOR, RESPONDENTS. D E C I S I O N

  • [G.R. No. 187872, April 11 : 2011] STRATEGIC ALLIANCE DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, PETITIONER, VS. STAR INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION ET AL., RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 154042, April 11 : 2011] JOSE T. TUBOLA, JR., PETITIONER, VS. SANDIGANBAYAN AND PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 180282, April 11 : 2011] CRISPIN DICHOSO, JR., EVELYN DICHOSO VALDEZ, AND ROSEMARIE DICHOSO PE BENITO, PETITIONERS,vs.PATROCINIO L. MARCOS, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 186243, April 11 : 2011] HACIENDA PRIMERA DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION and ANNA KATRINA E. HERNANDEZ, Petitioners, vs. MICHAEL S. VILLEGAS, Respondent.

  • [G.R. No. 179010, April 11 : 2011] ELENITA M. DEWARA, REPRESENTED BY HER ATTORNEY-IN-FACT, FERDINAND MAGALLANES, PETITIONER, VS. SPOUSES RONNIE AND GINA LAMELA AND STENILE ALVERO, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 190660, April 11 : 2011] LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES, PETITIONER, VS. COURT OF APPEALS AND ELIZABETH DIAZ, REPRESENTED BY FRANCISCA P. DE GUZMAN AS ATTORNEY-IN-FACT, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 183575, April 11 : 2011] SPOUSES ROGELIO MARCELO AND MILAGROS MARCELO, PETITIONERS, VS. LBC BANK, RESPONDENT.

  • [A.M. No. P-10-2767 [Formerly AM OCA IPI 08-2905-P], April 12 : 2011] BR> ANTONIO EXEQUIEL A. MOMONGAN, COMPLAINANT, VS. PRIMITIVO A. SUMAYO, CLERK III AND ARIEL A. MOMONGAN, PROCESS SERVER, RESPONDENTS.

  • [A.M. No. P-11-2913 (Formerly OCA I.P.I. No. 08-2810-P), April 12 : 2011] MA. CHEDNA ROMERO, COMPLAINANT, VS. PACIFICO B. VILLAROSA, JR., SHERIFF IV, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, BRANCH 17, PALOMPON, LEYTE, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 193846, April 12 : 2011] MARIA LAARNI L. CAYETANO, PETITIONER, VS. THE COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS AND DANTE O. TINGA, RESPONDENTS.

  • [A.M. OCA IPI No. 10-177-CA-J, April 12 : 2011] RE: COMPLAINT OF CONCERNED MEMBERS OF CHINESE GROCERS ASSOCIATION AGAINST JUSTICE SOCORRO B. INTING OF THE COURT OF APPEALS

  • [G.R. No. 191940, April 12 : 2011] PHILIPPINE CHARITY SWEEPSTAKES OFFICE BOARD OF DIRECTORS AND REYNALDO P. MARTIN, PETITIONERS, VS. MARIE JEAN C. LAPID, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 176951, April 12 : 2011] LEAGUE OF CITIES OF THE PHILIPPINES (LCP), REPRESENTED BY LCP NATIONAL PRESIDENT JERRY P. TREÑAS; CITY OF CALBAYOG, REPRESENTED BY MAYOR MEL SENEN S. SARMIENTO; AND JERRY P. TREÑAS, IN HIS PERSONAL CAPACITY AS TAXPAYER, PETITIONERS, VS. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS; MUNICIPALITY OF BAYBAY, PROVINCE OF LEYTE; MUNICIPALITY OF BOGO, PROVINCE OF CEBU; MUNICIPALITY OF CATBALOGAN, PROVINCE OF WESTERN SAMAR; MUNICIPALITY OF TANDAG, PROVINCE OF SURIGAO DEL SUR; MUNICIPALITY OF BORONGAN, PROVINCE OF EASTERN SAMAR; AND MUNICIPALITY OF TAYABAS, PROVINCE OF QUEZON, RESPONDENTS. [G.R. NO. 177499] LEAGUE OF CITIES OF THE PHILIPPINES (LCP), REPRESENTED BY LCP NATIONAL PRESIDENT JERRY P. TREÑAS; CITY OF CALBAYOG, REPRESENTED BY MAYOR MEL SENEN S. SARMIENTO; AND JERRY P. TREÑAS, IN HIS PERSONAL CAPACITY AS TAXPAYER, PETITIONERS, VS. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS; MUNICIPALITY OF LAMITAN, PROVINCE OF BASILAN; MUNICIPALITY OF TABUK, PROVINCE OF KALINGA; MUNICIPALITY OF BAYUGAN, PROVINCE OF AGUSAN DEL SUR; MUNICIPALITY OF BATAC, PROVINCE OF ILOCOS NORTE; MUNICIPALITY OF MATI, PROVINCE OF DAVAO ORIENTAL; AND MUNICIPALITY OF GUIHULNGAN, PROVINCE OF NEGROS ORIENTAL, RESPONDENTS. [G.R. NO. 178056] LEAGUE OF CITIES OF THE PHILIPPINES (LCP), REPRESENTED BY LCP NATIONAL PRESIDENT JERRY P. TREÑAS; CITY OF CALBAYOG, REPRESENTED BY MAYOR MEL SENEN S. SARMIENTO; AND JERRY P. TREÑAS, IN HIS PERSONAL CAPACITY AS TAXPAYER, PETITIONERS, VS. COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS; MUNICIPALITY OF CABADBARAN, PROVINCE OF AGUSAN DEL NORTE; MUNICIPALITY OF CARCAR, PROVINCE OF CEBU; MUNICIPALITY OF EL SALVADOR, PROVINCE OF MISAMIS ORIENTAL; MUNICIPALITY OF NAGA, CEBU; AND DEPARTMENT OF BUDGET AND MANAGEMENT, RESPONDENTS.

  • [A. M. No. 08-19-SB-J, April 12 : 2011] ASSISTANT SPECIAL PROSECUTOR III ROHERMIA J. JAMSANI-RODRIGUEZ, COMPLAINANT, VS. JUSTICES GREGORY S. ONG, JOSE R. HERNANDEZ, AND RODOLFO A. PONFERRADA, SANDIGANBAYAN, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 180050, April 12 : 2011] RODOLFO G. NAVARRO, VICTOR F. BERNAL, AND RENE O. MEDINA, PETITIONERS, VS. EXECUTIVE SECRETARY EDUARDO ERMITA, REPRESENTING THE PRESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES; SENATE OF THE PHILIPPINES, REPRESENTED BY THE SENATE PRESIDENT; HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, REPRESENTED BY THE HOUSE SPEAKER; GOVERNOR ROBERT ACE S. BARBERS, REPRESENTING THE MOTHER PROVINCE OF SURIGAO DEL NORTE; GOVERNOR GERALDINE ECLEO VILLAROMAN, REPRESENTING THE NEW PROVINCE OF DINAGAT ISLANDS, RESPONDENTS, CONGRESSMAN FRANCISCO T. MATUGAS, HON. SOL T. MATUGAS, HON. ARTURO CARLOS A. EGAY, JR., HON. SIMEON VICENTE G. CASTRENCE, HON. MAMERTO D. GALANIDA, HON. MARGARITO M. LONGOS, AND HON. CESAR M. BAGUNDOL, INTERVENORS.

  • [G.R. No. 175831, April 12 : 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, APPELLEE, VS. FLORANTE RELANES ALIAS "DANTE," APPELLANT.

  • [G.R. No. 189479, April 12 : 2011] JEROME JAPSON, PETITIONER, VS. CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, RESPONDENT.

  • [A.M. No. RTJ-09-2197 [FORMERLY OCA-I.P.I. NO. 08-3026-RTJ], April 13 : 2011] ANTONINO MONTICALBO, COMPLAINANT, VS. JUDGE CRESCENTE F. MARAYA, JR., REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, BRANCH 11, CALUBIAN, LEYTE, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 183984, April 13 : 2011] ARTURO SARTE FLORES, PETITIONER, VS. SPOUSES ENRICO L. LINDO, JR. AND EDNA C. LINDO, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 150898, April 13 : 2011] OCEAN BUILDERS CONSTRUCTION CORP., AND/OR DENNIS HAO, PETITIONERS, VS. SPOUSES ANTONIO AND ANICIA CUBACUB, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 182262, April 13 : 2011] ROMULO B. DELA ROSA, PETITIONER, VS. MICHAELMAR PHILIPPINES, INC., SUBSTITUTED BY OSG SHIPMANAGEMENT MANILA, INC.,* AND/OR MICHAELMAR SHIPPING SERVICES, INC., RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 135715, April 13 : 2011] PRESIDENTIAL AD HOC FACT- FINDING COMMITTEE ON BEHEST LOANS, REPRESENTED BY MAGDANGAL B. ELMA, PCGG CHAIRMAN AND ORLANDO C. SALVADOR AS CONSULTANT OF THE TECHNICAL WORKING GROUP OF THE AD-HOC COMMITTEE, PETITIONERS, VS. HONORABLE ANIANO A. DESIERTO AS OMBUDSMAN, PANFILO O. DOMINGO, CONRADO S. REYES, ENRIQUE M. HERBOZA, MOHAMMAD ALI DIMAPORO, ABDULLAH DIMAPORO AND AMER DIANALAN, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 190487, April 13 : 2011] BUREAU OF CUSTOMS, PETITIONER, VS. PETER SHERMAN, MICHAEL WHELAN, TEODORO B. LINGAN, ATTY. OFELIA B. CAJIGAL AND THE COURT OF TAX APPEALS, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 181440, April 13 : 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. AIDA MARQUEZ, ACCUSED-APPELLANT. D E C I S I O N

  • [G.R. No. 170914, April 13 : 2011] STEFAN TITO MIÑOZA PETITIONER, VS. HON. CESAR TOMAS LOPEZ, IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS MAYOR AND CHAIR, LOON COCKPIT ARENA BIDDING AND AWARDS COMMITTEE, ITS MEMBERS NAMELY: HERMINIGILDO M. CALIFORNIA, NOEL CASTROJO, JESSE SEVILLA, FORTUNATO GARAY, PERFECTO MANTE, ROGELIO GANADOS, P/INSP. JASEN MAGARAN, SANGGUNIANG BAYAN OF LOON, BOHOL, REPRESENTED BY ITS PRESIDING OFFICER, VICE MAYOR RAUL BARBARONA, AND MARCELO EPE, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 157717, April 13 : 2011] HEIRS OF MAXIMINO DERLA, NAMELY: ZELDA, JUNA, GERALDINE, AIDA, ALMA, ALL SURNAMED DERLA; AND SABINA VDA. DE DERLA, ALL REPRESENTED BY THEIR ATTORNEY-IN-FACT, ZELDA DERLA, PETITIONERS, VS. HEIRS OF CATALINA DERLA VDA. DE HIPOLITO, MAE D. HIPOLITO, ROGER ZAGALES, FRANCISCO DERLA, SR., JOVITO DERLA, EXALTACION POND, AND VINA U. CASAWAY, IN HER CAPACITY AS THE REGISTER OF DEEDS OF TAGUM, DAVAO DEL NORTE, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 189655, April 13 : 2011] AOWA ELECTRONIC PHILIPPINES, INC., PETITIONER, VS. DEPARTMENT OF TRADE AND INDUSTRY, NATIONAL CAPITAL REGION, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 183569, April 13 : 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. VICENTE PUBLICO Y AMODIA, ACCUSED-APPELLANT.

  • [G.R. No. 168922, April 13 : 2011] WILFREDO Y. ANTIQUINA, PETITIONER, VS. MAGSAYSAY MARITIME CORPORATION AND/OR MASTERBULK, PTE., LTD., RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 169292, April 13 : 2011] SPOUSES FRANCISCO DE GUZMAN, JR. AND AMPARO O. DE GUZMAN, PETITIONERS, VS. CESAR OCHOA AND SYLVIA A. OCHOA, REPRESENTED BY ARACELI S. AZORES, AS THEIR ATTORNEY-IN-FACT, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 166859 : April 12, 2011] REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, PETITIONER, VS. SANDIGANBAYAN (FIRST DIVISION), EDUARDO M. COJUANGCO, JR., AGRICULTURAL CONSULTANCY SERVICES, INC., ARCHIPELAGO REALTY CORP., BALETE RANCH, INC., BLACK STALLION RANCH, INC., CHRISTENSEN PLANTATION COMPANY, DISCOVERY REALTY CORP., DREAM PASTURES, INC., ECHO RANCH, INC., FAR EAST RANCH, INC., FILSOV SHIPPING COMPANY, INC., FIRST UNITED TRANSPORT, INC., HABAGAT REALTY DEVELOPMENT, INC., KALAWAKAN RESORTS, INC., KAUNLARAN AGRICULTURAL CORP., LABAYUG AIR TERMINALS, INC., LANDAIR INTERNATIONAL MARKETING CORP., LHL CATTLE CORP., LUCENA OIL FACTORY, INC., MEADOW LARK PLANTATIONS, INC., METROPLEX COMMODITIES, INC., MISTY MOUNTAIN AGRICULTURAL CORP., NORTHEAST CONTRACT TRADERS, INC., NORTHERN CARRIERS CORP., OCEANSIDE MARITIME ENTERPRISES, INC., ORO VERDE SERVICES, INC., PASTORAL FARMS, INC., PCY OIL MANUFACTURING CORP., PHILIPPINE TECHNOLOGIES, INC., PRIMAVERA FARMS, INC., PUNONG-BAYAN HOUSING DEVELOPMENT CORP., PURA ELECTRIC COMPANY, INC., RADIO AUDIENCE DEVELOPERS INTEGRATED ORGANIZATION, INC., RADYO PILIPINO CORP., RANCHO GRANDE, INC., REDDEE DEVELOPERS, INC., SAN ESTEBAN DEVELOPMENT CORP., SILVER LEAF PLANTATIONS, INC., SOUTHERN SERVICE TRADERS, INC., SOUTHERN STAR CATTLE CORP., SPADE ONE RESORTS CORP., UNEXPLORED LAND DEVELOPERS, INC., VERDANT PLANTATIONS, INC., VESTA AGRICULTURAL CORP. AND WINGS RESORTS CORP., RESPONDENTS. [G.R. NO. 169203 : April 12, 2011] REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, PETITIONER, VS. SANDIGANBAYAN (FIRST DIVISION), EDUARDO M. COJUANGCO, JR., MEADOW LARK PLANTATIONS, INC., SILVER LEAF PLANTATIONS, INC., PRIMAVERA FARMS, INC., PASTORAL FARMS, INC., BLACK STALLION RANCH, INC., MISTY MOUNTAINS AGRICULTURAL CORP., ARCHIPELAGO REALTY CORP., AGRICULTURAL CONSULTANCY SERVICES, INC., SOUTHERN STAR CATTLE CORP., LHL CATTLE CORP., RANCHO GRANDE, INC., DREAM PASTURES, INC., FAR EAST RANCH, INC., ECHO RANCH, INC., LAND AIR INTERNATIONAL MARKETING CORP., REDDEE DEVELOPERS, INC., PCY OIL MANUFACTURING CORP., LUCENA OIL FACTORY, INC., METROPLEX COMMODITIES, INC., VESTA AGRICULTURAL CORP., VERDANT PLANTATIONS, INC., KAUNLARAN AGRICULTURAL CORP., ECJ & SONS AGRICULTURAL ENTERPRISES, INC., RADYO PILIPINO CORP., DISCOVERY REALTY CORP., FIRST UNITED TRANSPORT, INC., RADIO AUDIENCE DEVELOPERS INTEGRATED ORGANIZATION, INC., ARCHIPELAGO FINANCE AND LEASING CORP., SAN ESTEBAN DEVELOPMENT CORP., CHRISTENSEN PLANTATION COMPANY, NORTHERN CARRIERS CORP., VENTURE SECURITIES, INC., BALETE RANCH, INC., ORO VERDE SERVICES, INC., AND KALAWAKAN RESORTS, INC., RESPONDENTS. [G.R. NO. 180702 : April 12, 2011] REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, PETITIONER, VS. EDUARDO M. COJUANGCO, JR., FERDINAND E. MARCOS, IMELDA R. MARCOS, EDGARDO J. ANGARA,* JOSE C. CONCEPCION, AVELINO V. CRUZ, EDUARDO U. ESCUETA, PARAJA G. HAYUDINI, JUAN PONCE ENRILE, TEODORO D. REGALA, DANILO URSUA, ROGELIO A. VINLUAN, AGRICULTURAL CONSULTANCY SERVICES, INC., ANGLO VENTURES, INC., ARCHIPELAGO REALTY CORP., AP HOLDINGS, INC., ARC INVESTMENT, INC., ASC INVESTMENT, INC., AUTONOMOUS DEVELOPMENT CORP., BALETE RANCH, INC., BLACK STALLION RANCH, INC., CAGAYAN DE ORO OIL COMPANY, INC., CHRISTENSEN PLANTATION COMPANY, COCOA INVESTORS, INC., DAVAO AGRICULTURAL AVIATION, INC., DISCOVERY REALTY CORP., DREAM PASTURES, INC., ECHO RANCH, INC., ECJ & SONS AGRI. ENT., INC., FAR EAST RANCH, INC., FILSOV SHIPPING COMPANY, INC., FIRST MERIDIAN DEVELOPMENT, INC., FIRST UNITED TRANSPORT, INC., GRANEXPORT MANUFACTURING CORP., HABAGAT REALTY DEVELOPMENT, INC., HYCO AGRICULTURAL, INC., ILIGAN COCONUT INDUSTRIES, INC., KALAWAKAN RESORTS, INC., KAUNLARAN AGRICULTURAL CORP., LABAYOG AIR TERMINALS, INC., LANDAIR INTERNATIONAL MARKETING CORP., LEGASPI OIL COMPANY, LHL CATTLE CORP., LUCENA OIL FACTORY, INC., MEADOW LARK PLANTATIONS, INC., METROPLEX COMMODITIES, INC., MISTY MOUNTAIN AGRICULTURAL CORP., NORTHEAST CONTRACT TRADERS, INC., NORTHERN CARRIERS CORP., OCEANSIDE MARITIME ENTERPRISES, INC., ORO VERDE SERVICES, INC., PASTORAL FARMS, INC., PCY OIL MANUFACTURING CORP., PHILIPPINE RADIO CORP., INC., PHILIPPINE TECHNOLOGIES, INC., PRIMAVERA FARMS, INC., PUNONG-BAYAN HOUSING DEVELOPMENT CORP., PURA ELECTRIC COMPANY, INC., RADIO AUDIENCE DEVELOPERS INTEGRATED ORGANIZATION, INC., RADYO PILIPINO CORP., RANCHO GRANDE, INC., RANDY ALLIED VENTURES, INC., REDDEE DEVELOPERS, INC., ROCKSTEEL RESOURCES, INC., ROXAS SHARES, INC., SAN ESTEBAN DEVELOPMENT CORP., SAN MIGUEL CORPORATION OFFICERS, INC., SAN PABLO MANUFACTURING CORP., SOUTHERN LUZON OIL MILLS, INC., SILVER LEAF PLANTATIONS, INC., SORIANO SHARES, INC., SOUTHERN SERVICE TRADERS, INC., SOUTHERN STAR CATTLE CORP., SPADE 1 RESORTS CORP., TAGUM AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT CORP., TEDEUM RESOURCES, INC., THILAGRO EDIBLE OIL MILLS, INC., TODA HOLDINGS, INC., UNEXPLORED LAND DEVELOPERS, INC., VALHALLA PROPERTIES, INC., VENTURES SECURITIES, INC., VERDANT PLANTATIONS, INC., VESTA AGRICULTURAL CORP. AND WINGS RESORTS CORP., RESPONDENTS. JOVITO R. SALONGA, WIGBERTO E. TAÑADA, OSCAR F. SANTOS, VIRGILIO M. DAVID, ROMEO C. ROYANDAYAN FOR HIMSELF AND FOR SURIGAO DEL SUR FEDERATION OF AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVES (SUFAC), MORO FARMERS ASSOCIATION OF ZAMBOANGA DEL SUR (MOFAZS) AND COCONUT FARMERS OF SOUTHERN LEYTE COOPERATIVE (COFA-SL); PHILIPPINE RURAL RECONSTRUCTION MOVEMENT (PRRM), REPRESENTED BY CONRADO S. NAVARRO; COCONUT INDUSTRY REFORM MOVEMENT, INC. (COIR) REPRESENTED BY JOSE MARIE T. FAUSTINO; VICENTE FABE FOR HIMSELF AND FOR PAMBANSANG KILUSAN NG MGA SAMAHAN NG MAGSASAKA (PAKISAMA); NONITO CLEMENTE FOR HIMSELF AND FOR THE NAGKAKAISANG UGNAYAN NG MGA MALILIIT NA MAGSASAKA AT MANGGAGAWA SA NIYUGAN (NIUGAN); DIONELO M. SUANTE, SR. FOR HIMSELF AND FOR KALIPUNAN NG MALILIIT NA MAGNINIYOG NG PILIPINAS (KAMMPIL), INC., PETITIONERS-INTERVENORS.

  • [G.R. NO. 169203 : April 12, 2011] REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, PETITIONER, VS. SANDIGANBAYAN (FIRST DIVISION), EDUARDO M. COJUANGCO, JR., MEADOW LARK PLANTATIONS, INC., SILVER LEAF PLANTATIONS, INC., PRIMAVERA FARMS, INC., PASTORAL FARMS, INC., BLACK STALLION RANCH, INC., MISTY MOUNTAINS AGRICULTURAL CORP., ARCHIPELAGO REALTY CORP., AGRICULTURAL CONSULTANCY SERVICES, INC., SOUTHERN STAR CATTLE CORP., LHL CATTLE CORP., RANCHO GRANDE, INC., DREAM PASTURES, INC., FAR EAST RANCH, INC., ECHO RANCH, INC., LAND AIR INTERNATIONAL MARKETING CORP., REDDEE DEVELOPERS, INC., PCY OIL MANUFACTURING CORP., LUCENA OIL FACTORY, INC., METROPLEX COMMODITIES, INC., VESTA AGRICULTURAL CORP., VERDANT PLANTATIONS, INC., KAUNLARAN AGRICULTURAL CORP., ECJ & SONS AGRICULTURAL ENTERPRISES, INC., RADYO PILIPINO CORP., DISCOVERY REALTY CORP., FIRST UNITED TRANSPORT, INC., RADIO AUDIENCE DEVELOPERS INTEGRATED ORGANIZATION, INC., ARCHIPELAGO FINANCE AND LEASING CORP., SAN ESTEBAN DEVELOPMENT CORP., CHRISTENSEN PLANTATION COMPANY, NORTHERN CARRIERS CORP., VENTURE SECURITIES, INC., BALETE RANCH, INC., ORO VERDE SERVICES, INC., AND KALAWAKAN RESORTS, INC., RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. NO. 180702 : April 12, 2011] REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, PETITIONER, VS. EDUARDO M. COJUANGCO, JR., FERDINAND E. MARCOS, IMELDA R. MARCOS, EDGARDO J. ANGARA,* JOSE C. CONCEPCION, AVELINO V. CRUZ, EDUARDO U. ESCUETA, PARAJA G. HAYUDINI, JUAN PONCE ENRILE, TEODORO D. REGALA, DANILO URSUA, ROGELIO A. VINLUAN, AGRICULTURAL CONSULTANCY SERVICES, INC., ANGLO VENTURES, INC., ARCHIPELAGO REALTY CORP., AP HOLDINGS, INC., ARC INVESTMENT, INC., ASC INVESTMENT, INC., AUTONOMOUS DEVELOPMENT CORP., BALETE RANCH, INC., BLACK STALLION RANCH, INC., CAGAYAN DE ORO OIL COMPANY, INC., CHRISTENSEN PLANTATION COMPANY, COCOA INVESTORS, INC., DAVAO AGRICULTURAL AVIATION, INC., DISCOVERY REALTY CORP., DREAM PASTURES, INC., ECHO RANCH, INC., ECJ & SONS AGRI. ENT., INC., FAR EAST RANCH, INC., FILSOV SHIPPING COMPANY, INC., FIRST MERIDIAN DEVELOPMENT, INC., FIRST UNITED TRANSPORT, INC., GRANEXPORT MANUFACTURING CORP., HABAGAT REALTY DEVELOPMENT, INC., HYCO AGRICULTURAL, INC., ILIGAN COCONUT INDUSTRIES, INC., KALAWAKAN RESORTS, INC., KAUNLARAN AGRICULTURAL CORP., LABAYOG AIR TERMINALS, INC., LANDAIR INTERNATIONAL MARKETING CORP., LEGASPI OIL COMPANY, LHL CATTLE CORP., LUCENA OIL FACTORY, INC., MEADOW LARK PLANTATIONS, INC., METROPLEX COMMODITIES, INC., MISTY MOUNTAIN AGRICULTURAL CORP., NORTHEAST CONTRACT TRADERS, INC., NORTHERN CARRIERS CORP., OCEANSIDE MARITIME ENTERPRISES, INC., ORO VERDE SERVICES, INC., PASTORAL FARMS, INC., PCY OIL MANUFACTURING CORP., PHILIPPINE RADIO CORP., INC., PHILIPPINE TECHNOLOGIES, INC., PRIMAVERA FARMS, INC., PUNONG-BAYAN HOUSING DEVELOPMENT CORP., PURA ELECTRIC COMPANY, INC., RADIO AUDIENCE DEVELOPERS INTEGRATED ORGANIZATION, INC., RADYO PILIPINO CORP., RANCHO GRANDE, INC., RANDY ALLIED VENTURES, INC., REDDEE DEVELOPERS, INC., ROCKSTEEL RESOURCES, INC., ROXAS SHARES, INC., SAN ESTEBAN DEVELOPMENT CORP., SAN MIGUEL CORPORATION OFFICERS, INC., SAN PABLO MANUFACTURING CORP., SOUTHERN LUZON OIL MILLS, INC., SILVER LEAF PLANTATIONS, INC., SORIANO SHARES, INC., SOUTHERN SERVICE TRADERS, INC., SOUTHERN STAR CATTLE CORP., SPADE 1 RESORTS CORP., TAGUM AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT CORP., TEDEUM RESOURCES, INC., THILAGRO EDIBLE OIL MILLS, INC., TODA HOLDINGS, INC., UNEXPLORED LAND DEVELOPERS, INC., VALHALLA PROPERTIES, INC., VENTURES SECURITIES, INC., VERDANT PLANTATIONS, INC., VESTA AGRICULTURAL CORP. AND WINGS RESORTS CORP., RESPONDENTS. JOVITO R. SALONGA, WIGBERTO E. TAADA, OSCAR F. SANTOS, VIRGILIO M. DAVID, ROMEO C. ROYANDAYAN FOR HIMSELF AND FOR SURIGAO DEL SUR FEDERATION OF AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVES (SUFAC), MORO FARMERS ASSOCIATION OF ZAMBOANGA DEL SUR (MOFAZS) AND COCONUT FARMERS OF SOUTHERN LEYTE COOPERATIVE (COFA-SL); PHILIPPINE RURAL RECONSTRUCTION MOVEMENT (PRRM), REPRESENTED BY CONRADO S. NAVARRO; COCONUT INDUSTRY REFORM MOVEMENT, INC. (COIR) REPRESENTED BY JOSE MARIE T. FAUSTINO; VICENTE FABE FOR HIMSELF AND FOR PAMBANSANG KILUSAN NG MGA SAMAHAN NG MAGSASAKA (PAKISAMA); NONITO CLEMENTE FOR HIMSELF AND FOR THE NAGKAKAISANG UGNAYAN NG MGA MALILIIT NA MAGSASAKA AT MANGGAGAWA SA NIYUGAN (NIUGAN); DIONELO M. SUANTE, SR. FOR HIMSELF AND FOR KALIPUNAN NG MALILIIT NA MAGNINIYOG NG PILIPINAS (KAMMPIL), INC., PETITIONERS-INTERVENORS.

  • [G.R. No. 171542 : April 6, 2011] ANGELITO P. MAGNO, Petitioner, v. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES , MICHAEL MONSOD, ESTHER LUZ MAE GREGORIO, GIAN CARLO CAJOLES, NENETTE CASTILLON, DONATO ENABE and ALFIE FERNANDEZ, Respondents.

  •  





     
     

    [G.R. No. 189479, April 12 : 2011]   JEROME JAPSON, PETITIONER, VS. CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, RESPONDENT.

     
    EN BANC

    [G.R. No. 189479, April 12 : 2011]

    JEROME JAPSON, PETITIONER, VS. CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, RESPONDENT.

    D E C I S I O N


    NACHURA, J.:

    Before this Court is a Petition for Review on Certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court, assailing the Decision[1] dated June 8, 2009 and the Resolution[2] dated September 9, 2009 of the Court of Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. SP No. 104865. The CA affirmed the resolutions of the Civil Service Commission (CSC), finding petitioner Jerome Japson (Japson), former Senior Member Services Representative assigned at the Social Security System (SSS) office in Baguio City (SSS Baguio City), guilty of Dishonesty, Grave Misconduct, and Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service, and imposing on him the penalty of dismissal.[3]

    The antecedent facts, as found by the CSC and adopted by the CA, are as follows:

    Records show that Japson became the subject of a series of inquiries conducted by the SSS linking him to a profiting venture involving the processing of claims for SSS death and funeral benefits while he was assigned at SSS Baguio City from 1997 to May 1998. The inquiry was spurred by an affidavit dated October 6, 1999 of Mina Balanag, who happened to assist her illiterate mother, Cat-an Paanos, in claiming, as beneficiary, the SSS death benefits of her deceased father, Kitos Paanos.  She alleged that because she knew nothing of the steps for processing of claims for death benefits, a village mate referred her to spouses Boyet and Shirley Abuan [(Spouses Abuan)] who have been frequenting their village. The [S]pouses Abuans (sic) assured that her mother will receive the benefits in due time since Shirley has a relative working at the SSS Baguio City who also happened to be their neighbor at (sic) Baguio City. Later, she learned that this neighbor-relative turned out (sic) to be Shirley's cousin Japson.

    In exchange for their help, the [S]pouses Abuan demanded a share equivalent to 10% of the SSS death benefits that will be awarded to Balanag's mother. She reposed her full trust on the Spouses Abuan that even her mother's address in the claim form reflected that of the Spouses Abuan's home at P-2-36 Gabriela Silang Brgy., Baguio City, although her mother really lives in Bila, Bokod, Benguet. After the claim was approved, the SSS issued a check in the amount of Php183,472.72. After it was cashed (sic), the spouses Abuan allegedly received more than what was originally agreed (sic) since aside from the P[hp]15,000.00 corresponding to their "commission," they demanded Php83,000.00 more, purportedly the asking fee of Japson and a certain Atty. Reynaldo Rodeza, who were instrumental for the release of the benefits. Reluctantly, they gave the amount for fear that the benefits awarded them might be withdrawn. An affidavit dated January 26, 2000[ ] was executed by Balanag's mother, Cat-an Paanos, to corroborate her allegations.

    On the other hand, in his affidavit dated January 27, 2000, as well as in his testimony relative thereto, Erano F. Gaspar (Ireneo in the Transcript of his Testimony taken on June 6, 2000 before the SSS) alleged that he came to know Japson through Shirley Abuan after she convinced him to transfer his claim for his father's death benefits then pending at SSS Solano, Nueva Vizcaya, to SSS Baguio City, intimating that Japson, who is her cousin, could guarantee its prompt release since he was assigned at the claims section there. A meeting with Japson was then arranged by Shirley after which she filed the claim on October 10, 1997. Sometime on (sic) November 1997, Japson informed Gaspar by telephone that a check in an amount of Php74,000.00 was already issued to him. On the same day, he went to Baguio City, where, accompanied by Japson, he retrieved (sic) the check at the Baguio Post Office. After opening an account at PNP (sic) Baguio and withdrawing a sum, Japson informed him that a machine error in the computation of his benefits resulted in an overpayment as he was supposed to receive Php54,000.00. Gaspar handed over the excess P[hp]20,000.00, which Japson promised to deliver personally to SSS Baguio City. In addition, he paid Japson Php2,000.00 for the assistance he (sic) rendered.

    In response to the above complaints, the SSS conducted a series of investigation (sic) on the official transactions of Japson and uncovered details that raised its suspicion. First, the address of claimants to  the death benefits of deceased SSS members Kitos Paanos, Warlito Costales and Adriano Castillo as well as the pension form of SSS retiree Jovita Resquer bore a common address: P-2-35 Gabriela Silang Brgy., Baguio City[,] which is the address of Japson. They found out, too, that Japson signed and acknowledged the receipt of checks which were issued to the beneficiaries of Paanos and Castillo. It was further disclosed that Japson committed lapses in procedure, namely, his failure to stamp "received" on the claim of funeral benefits of Costales; his having attested to the fact of death of Kitos Paanos even though he has no personal knowledge of the same and with apparent conflict of interest due to his assignment at the claims section; and the discovery that by (sic) as late as February 2000, he has yet to mail a check issued by the SSS way back on (sic) December 24, 1999. The investigators received reports, too, that he took P[hp]17,000.00 from the benefits awarded to one Minda Balucas.

    Upon the recommendation of the investigating unit which found prima facie case to support the complaints, the SSS, through Carlos A. Arellano, then Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), formally charged Japson with Dishonesty, Grave Misconduct and Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service and placed him under preventive suspension of ninety (90) days. After the parties submitted their respective pleadings, the formal hearings were held on June 6 and 7, 2000 and November 9, 2000, where Japson testified for his defense.

    In his testimony which amplified his Counter-Affidavit/Answer to the Formal Charge, Japson who assisted claimants for death, disability and retirement claims when he was first assigned to the (sic) SSS Bangued[,] refuted the allegation that he took a hefty share from death and funeral benefits awarded to beneficiaries of SSS members referred to him by the [S]pouses Abuan or that he worked in concert with [S]pouses Abuan to profit from the claimants. First, in response to the allegation of Erano P. Gaspar, he recalled that his cousin, Shirley Abuan, who also happened to be his neighbor, told him that Gaspar was having difficulty in claiming the SSS benefits of his father when he filed his claim at SSS Solano branch in Nueva Vizcaya. Assessing that some documents required by [the] SSS Solano Branch are not necessary, he brought the papers instead to SSS Baguio City in order to speed up the processing of Gaspar's claim. Eventually, a check in the amount of Php74,000.00 was issued by the SSS after which he accompanied Gaspar to claim the check at the Baguio City Post Office. After Gaspar cashed (sic) the check, Japson told him matter-of-factly that due to machine error, the SSS overpaid him by Php20,000.00, producing a copy of the encoding sheet prepared by the Benefits Section which showed the correct computation. Gaspar gave him the excess amount for him to turn over to the SSS. Afterwards, they retired to Japson's house at Brgy. Gabriela Silang, Baguio City where they had a few rounds of drinks as it was his cousin's birthday. Gaspar insisted on giving him Php2,000.00 but he refused, saying that he does not expect any payment for his help more so as they are brothers of faith as both belong to Iglesia ni Cristo. Instead, Gaspar just spent the sum to buy food for their drinks. As to the Php20,000.00, Japson produced a (sic) SSS Special bank receipt dated February 16, 2000 as proof of remittance by Gaspar of the P[hp]20,000.00 excess amount and a Miscellaneous Payment Return Form bearing an identical date to show that Japson turned over the amount intact to the SSS.

    With respect to the allegation that a number of applications for benefits suspiciously bore his address even though the applicants were not from Baguio City but in (sic) outlying provinces with SSS branches of their own, he explained that the [S]pouses Abuan, who were authorized by the claimants to file their application[s] and to follow-up their claims, might have placed the wrong information since they almost have an identical address (sic). He did not notice the error since he was accustomed to his old address which he wrote as Lower Hillside, Kennon Road, Baguio City. As to the case of Resquer, he pointed out that their address in the application clearly showed P-2-45 Brgy. Gabriela Silang and not P-2-35 as claimed in the investigation report. He also denied that he kept the Php17,000.00 from the benefits awarded to Balucas. He insisted that the sum was only entrusted to him for safekeeping since Balucas was afraid to carry such amount when she traveled to Abra, showing as proof thereto a letter dated September 15, 1999 by Balucas acknowledging that Japson already returned the amount to her[,] coupled by a Certification dated September 15, 1999 from Abelardo Yogyog, Branch Head of the Abra Provincial Post Office, that the check corresponding to the benefits awarded to Balucas was delivered to Balucas by mail at her address [on] Harrison St., Zone 7, Bangued, Abra. Japson backed up his counter-allegations by producing affidavits both dated February 14, 2003 executed by Balucas and Resquer clearing him of any wrongdoing and lauding him for the invaluable assistance rendered them.[4]

    A case for Dishonesty, Grave Misconduct, and Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service was filed against Japson before the SSS. On February 4, 2003, the SSS promulgated a decision finding Japson guilty on all counts.[5]

    The SSS said that while there was nothing wrong per se with petitioner letting claimants use his home address for their claims, a perception of material gain is nonetheless indubitable. It pointed out that it was highly improbable for claimants from Isabela and Nueva Vizcaya, where there are also SSS branches, to file their claims in Abra. The most logical conclusion, the SSS said, is that they made their claims through the Spouses Abuan on the latter's assurance that these would be processed at the soonest possible time. Petitioner should have been wary of the number of claims brought to him by the Spouses Abuan, the SSS said, and he should have avoided these claims or referred them to the proper branch offices.[6] The SSS held that it is not necessary to show concrete proof of receiving consideration therefor, following the principle of res ipsa loquitur.[7]

    Petitioner's motion for reconsideration was denied in an Order dated May 12, 2003. He then appealed to the CSC.

    In a resolution dated August 31, 2006, the CSC affirmed the SSS decision. The CSC underscored the link between petitioner and the Spouses Abuan, who were suspected of being fixers in the SSS and who allegedly ran a venture where they earned cuts or "commissions" from death, disability, and retirement benefits that were awarded to the SSS beneficiaries. The CSC found that the common link to the evidence ranged against Japson is the fact that he processed the various claims. The CSC also found credence in the following pieces of evidence: the statements under oath and testimonies of the principal complainants; the appearance of petitioner's address in the Death, Disability, and Retirement Forms of claimants; petitioner's attestation to the fact of death of several members, whose death benefits he himself processed; the fact that the claimants whom petitioner assisted were not from Baguio City; and the fact that these claimants were referred to him by the Spouses Abuan.[8]

    The CSC held that while there is no strong evidence showing that Japson received, collected, or took a share of the benefits awarded to the claimants, he was still liable for the charges against him because his irregular conduct and indiscriminate judgment relative to the handling of the claims caused a serious breach in the integrity of the system observed by the SSS, as well as his having endangered the welfare of the public at large.[9]

    Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration, which was denied in a resolution dated June 23, 2008.[10]

    Petitioner subsequently filed a Petition for Review under Rule 43 of the Rules of Court before the CA. The CA, on June 8, 2009, promulgated a Decision denying the petition and affirming the CSC's August 31, 2006 and June 23, 2008 resolutions.[11]

    The CA ruled that the CSC resolutions were anchored on substantial evidence.[12] The CA held that it is not for the appellate court to substitute its own judgment for that of the administrative agency on the sufficiency of evidence and the credibility of witnesses, and its findings may only be set aside on a showing of grave abuse of discretion. The CA also noted that, on the face of the substantial evidence presented against him, petitioner proffered only denials and presented himself as sole witness during the administrative proceedings.[13]

    Petitioner moved for reconsideration, but the same was denied in a Resolution dated September 9, 2009.

    Thus, petitioner filed a Petition for Review on Certiorari before this Court on October 29, 2009. In a Resolution dated June 22, 2010, the Court dismissed the petition for failure of petitioner to obey a lawful order of the Court. Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration of the Resolution, which the Court granted, and the petition was reinstated.

    Petitioner argues that the CA erred in finding that he was an employee of the SSS, and not of a private corporation, at the time of the commission of the offense referred to in Gaspar's complaint. He further argues that where there are conflicting findings between the SSS and the CSC, the Court may make a review of the facts of the case.[14]

    Petitioner claims that, at the time of the alleged recovery of P20,000.00 from Gaspar, he was still employed by the Development Bank  of the Philippines (DBP) Service Corporation, although he was detailed at the SSS. Thus, for that offense, the most that the SSS could have done was to refer the matter to DBP for the proper disciplinary action.[15]

    Petitioner emphasizes that he had no hand in filling out the forms for the claims subject of the case.[16] He points out that the Spouses Abuan did so. Moreover, there is no evidence to show that he specifically authorized the Spouses Abuan or any of the claimants involved to use his address.

    Petitioner also highlights the CSC's finding that there was less than substantial evidence that he financially benefited from the Spouses Abuan's transactions. Thus, he argues that the imposition of the penalty is unfounded.[17]

    Petitioner also harps on the SSS' standing "file anywhere" policy to counter the allegation of irregularity in the filing of claims of non-Baguio City residents before the SSS Baguio City branch where petitioner was assigned.[18] Likewise, he contends that there was no prejudice to the SSS since all claimants turned out to be qualified dependents/beneficiaries.[19] He posits that since the CSC found that he had not financially benefited from the transactions, he should not be penalized or administratively held liable and dismissed from the service.[20]

    In its Comment, the CSC, through the Office of the Solicitor General, argues that the CA correctly upheld its (CSC's) findings. The CSC maintains that petitioner's irregular conduct left the SSS vulnerable to swindlers who may use the office as an unwitting instrument to foist their deceit on the hapless public.[21] It said that petitioner's irregular and indiscriminate judgment relative to the handling of claims caused a serious breach in the integrity of the system observed by the SSS, as well as his having endangered the welfare of the public at large.

    As to the question of whether there was financial gain, the CSC argues that the same is irrelevant.[22] Petitioner is guilty of Dishonesty, Grave Misconduct, and Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service whether or not he gained from such acts, the CSC said.[23]

    The CSC also insists that petitioner was already an employee of the SSS at the time of the commission of the offenses, since he was absorbed as a regular employee on May 27, 1998.[24] His failure to refer the matter to his superiors and keeping the money in his possession even after he was already absorbed as a regular employee of the SSS caused prejudice to the integrity of the agency, the CSC emphasized.[25]

    The Court finds the petition bereft of merit; hence, the same is denied.

    Factual findings made by quasi-judicial bodies and administrative agencies when supported by substantial evidence are accorded great respect and even finality by the appellate courts.[26] This is because administrative agencies possess specialized knowledge and expertise in their respective fields.[27] As such, their findings of fact are binding upon this Court unless there is a showing of grave abuse of discretion, or where it is clearly shown that they were arrived at arbitrarily or in disregard of the evidence on record.[28]

    The Court notes that, although there is some variance in the conclusion arrived at by the SSS and the CSC, their findings as to the facts of the case are the same. Both agencies found the evidence for the complainants credible and proved that petitioner committed the acts complained of. Moreover, the CA sustained these factual findings. The Court finds no reason to disturb these findings, and therefore adopts the same.

    Petitioner makes much of the CSC's finding that he did not financially benefit from the transactions. However, whether or not petitioner gained any financial benefit is not relevant. Neither is the fact that the government did not actually lose money through incorrect disbursement of public funds.

    When an officer or employee is disciplined, the object sought is not the punishment of such officer or employee, but the improvement of the public service and the preservation of the public's faith and confidence in the government.[29]

    In administrative cases, the injury sought to be remedied is not merely the loss of public money or property. More significant are the pernicious effects of such action on the orderly administration of government services. Acts that go against the established rules of conduct for government personnel bring harm to the civil service, whether they result in loss or not.

    Petitioner was charged with Dishonesty, Grave Misconduct, and Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service.

    Dishonesty is defined as the concealment or distortion of truth in a matter of fact relevant to one's office or connected with the performance of his duty.[30] It implies a disposition to lie, cheat, deceive, or defraud; untrustworthiness; lack of integrity; lack of honesty, probity, or integrity in principle; and lack of fairness and straightforwardness.[31]

    On the other hand, misconduct is a transgression of some established or definite rule of action, is a forbidden act, is a dereliction of duty, is willful in character, and implies wrongful intent and not mere error in judgment.[32] More particularly, it is an unlawful behavior by the public officer.[33] The term, however, does not necessarily imply corruption or criminal intent.[34]

    Petitioner's acts clearly reflect his dishonesty and grave misconduct. He was less than forthright in his dealings with the complainants. He allowed the Spouses Abuan to use his position to make their "clients" believe that he could give them undue advantage - over others without the same connection - by processing their claims faster. Likewise, his acts imply malevolent intent, and not merely error in judgment. He was aware of what the Spouses Abuan were doing and was complicit in the same. At the very least, he failed to stop the illegal trade, and that constitutes willful disregard of the laws and rules.

    Taken together, all the circumstances, as found by the SSS and the CSC, show that petitioner committed acts of Dishonesty, Grave Misconduct, and Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service.

    Prejudice to the service is not only through wrongful disbursement of public funds or loss of public property. Greater damage comes with the public's perception of corruption and incompetence in the government.

    Petitioner is reminded that a public servant must exhibit at all times the highest sense of honesty and integrity. The Constitution stresses that a public office is a public trust and public officers must at all times be accountable to the people, serve them with utmost responsibility, integrity, loyalty, and efficiency, act with patriotism and justice, and lead modest lives. These constitutionally-enshrined principles, oft-repeated in our case law, are not mere rhetorical flourishes or idealistic sentiments.  They should be taken as working standards by all in the public service.[35]

    WHEREFORE, the foregoing premises considered, the Petition is DENIED for lack of merit.

    SO ORDERED.

    Corona, C.J., Carpio, Carpio Morales, Velasco, Jr., Leonardo-De Castro, Brion, Peralta, Bersamin, Del Castillo, Abad, Villarama, Jr., Perez, Mendoza, and Sereno, JJ., concur.

    Endnotes:


    [1] Penned by Associate Justice Celia C. Librea-Leagogo, with Associate Justices Juan Q. Enriquez, Jr. and Antonio L. Villamor, rollo, pp. 37-59.

    [2] Id. at 61-62.

    [3] Supra note 1, at 56.

    [4] Id. at 38-41.

    [5] Rollo, pp. 120-134.

    [6] Id. at 132-133.

    [7] Id. at 133.

    [8] Id. at 214-215.

    [9] Id. at 216.

    [10] Id. at 95-100.

    [11] Supra note 1, at 56.

    [12] Id. at 45.

    [13] Id. at 54.

    [14] Rollo, p. 21.

    [15] Id. at 74.

    [16] Id. at 76.

    [17] Id. at 77.

    [18] Id. at 80.

    [19] Id. at 81.

    [20] Id. at 86.

    [21] Id. at 256.

    [22] Id.

    [23] Id. at 266.

    [24] Id. at 267.

    [25] Id.

    [26] Cosmos Bottling Corporation v. Nagrama, Jr., G.R. No. 164403, March 4, 2008, 547 SCRA 571, 586-587.

    [27] Id. at 588.

    [28] Letran Calamba Faculty and Employees Association v. National Labor Relations Commission, G.R. No. 156225, January 29, 2008, 543 SCRA 26, 38.

    [29] Civil Service Commission v. Cortez, G.R. No. 155732, June 3, 2004, 430 SCRA 593, citing Bautista v. Negado, etc., and NWSA, 108 Phil. 283, 289 (1960).

    [30] Alfonso v. Office of the President, G.R. No. 150091, April 2, 2007, 520 SCRA 64, 87, citing Civil Service Commission v. Cayobit, 457 Phil. 452, 460 (2003).

    [31] Concerned Citizen v. Gabral, Jr., 514 Phil. 209, 219 (2005).

    [32] Osop v. Atty. Fontanilla, 417 Phil. 724, 728-729 (2001).

    [33] Judge Cervantes v. Cardeño, 501 Phil. 13, 18 (2005).

    [34] Office of the Court Administrator v. Duque, 491 Phil. 128, 133 (2005).

    [35] Civil Service Commission v. Cortez, supra note 29, at 607.

    [G.R. No. 189479, April 12 : 2011]   JEROME JAPSON, PETITIONER, VS. CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, RESPONDENT.


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