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December-2011 Jurisprudence                 

  • G.R. No. 172624 : December 5, 2011 PABLO POLSOTIN, JR., ARWIN RAYALA, GERONIMO LIMPANTE, RAUL DOMDOM, AND OSCAR ANDRIN, Petitioners, v. DE GUIA ENTERPRISES, INC., Respondent.

  • G.R. No. 181704 : December 6, 2011 BUREAU OF CUSTOMS EMPLOYEES ASSOCIATION (BOCEA), represented by its National President (BOCEA National Executive Council) Mr. Romulo A. Pagulayan, Petitioner, v. HON. MARGARITO B. TEVES, in his capacity as Secretary of the Department of Finance, HON. NAPOLEON L. MORALES, in his capacity as Commissioner of the Bureau of Customs, HON. LILIAN B. HEFTI, in her capacity as Commissioner of the Bureau of Internal Revenue, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 194128 : December 7, 2011 WESTMONT INVESTMENT CORPORATION, Petitioner, v. AMOS P. FRANCIA, JR., CECILIA ZAMORA, BENJAMIN FRANCIA, and PEARLBANK SECURITIES, INC., Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 190861 : December 7, 2011 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. LINO L. DUAVIS, Appellant.

  • G.R. No. 174193 : December 7, 2011 SAMUEL JULIAN, represented by his Attorney-in-Fact, ROBERTO DELA CRUZ, Petitioner, v. DEVELOPMENT BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES and THE CITY SHERIFF, Respondents.

  • G.R. No. 167002 : December 12, 2011 VICTOR R. REYES, substituted by his heirs, CLARIBEL G. REYES, CLARISSA G. REYES, and CZARINA G. REYES, Petitioners, v. COURT OF APPEALS, CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION, HON. JOSE L. ATIENZA, JR., in his capacity as City Mayor of Manila, SENEN D. TOMADA, and HERNANDO B. GARCIA, Respondents.

  • A.M. No. P-07-2300 (Formerly OCA IPI No. 05-2231-P) : December 12, 2011 ATTY. RUTILLO B. PASOK, Complainant, v. CARLOS P. DIAZ, Sheriff IV, Regional Trial Court, Branch 20, Tacurong City, Respondent.

  • A.M. No. P-05-2082 (Formerly A.M. No. 05-8-534-RTC) : December 12, 2011 OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR, Complainant, v. CLERK OF COURT HERMENEGILDO I. MARASIGAN, Regional Trial Court, Kabacan, North Cotabato, Respondent.

  • G.R. No. 193531 : December 14, 2011 ELLERY MARCH G. TORRES, Petitioner, v. PHILIPPINE AMUSEMENT and GAMING CORPORATION, Represented by ATTY. CARLOS R. BAUTISTA, JR., Respondent.

  • A.M. No. P-11-3000 (Formerly A.M. OCA I.P.I. No. 10-3524-P) : December 14, 2011 ARTHUR M. GABON, Complainant, v. REBECCA P. MERKA, Clerk of Court II, Municipal Trial Court, Liloan, Southern Leyte, Respondent.

  • [G.R. No. 181961 : December 05, 2011] LVM CONSTRUCTION CORPORATION, REPRESENTED BY ITS MANAGING DIRECTOR, ANDRES CHUA LAO, PETITIONER, VS. F.T. SANCHEZ/SOCOR/KIMWA (JOINT VENTURE), F.T. SANCHEZ CONSTRUCTION CORPORATION, SOCOR CONSTRUCTION CORPORATION AND KIMWA CONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION ALL REPRESENTED BY FORTUNATO O. SANCHEZ, JR., RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 167807 : December 06, 2011] MANOLITO AGRA, EDMUNDO P. AGUILAR, IMELDA I. AMERICA, EVELYN R. CONCEPCION, DIOSDADO A. CORSIGA, PERCIVAL G. CRISOSTOMO, CESAR E. FAELDON, MA. REGINA C. FILOTEO, ZARINA O. HIPOLITO, JANICE F. MABILOG, ROBERTO MARTINEZ, JONATHAN MENDROS, NORMAN MIRASOL, EDRICK V. MOZO, LORENZO A. PENOLIAR, LOURDES QUINTERO, GLORIA GUDELIA SAMBO, DEMOSTHENES V. ERENO, RHONEIL LIBUNAO, ILUGEN P. MABANSAG, JOSEPHINE MAGBOO, MADELEINE ANN B. BAUTISTA, ULYSSES C. BIBON, ANGELINA RAMOS, EDUARDO M. SUMAYOD, DOMINGO TAMAYO, HERACLEA M. AFABLE, ANNA LISSA CREENCIA, CHONA O. DELA CRUZ, MERCY NANETTE C. IBOY, JEAN A. LUPANGO, MARIE DELA O. NA-OBRE, PERLA LUZ OCAMPO, ROUCHELLEJANE PAYURAN, ABIGAIL E. PORMENTO, THERESITA A. RIVERA, MILAGROS ROBLES, JOSEPHINE ROSILLO, ARSENIA M. SACDALAN, PRECILA TUBIO, IRENE H. VIRAY, WILFREDO O. BUCSIT, BONIFACIO DAVID, ROSARIO P. DIZON, EXEQUIEL EVALE, JR., RONALD M. MANALO, HENRIETTA A. MARAMOT, FELICISIMO U. PULA, JONAS F. SALVADOR, ERNESTO SILVANO, JR., ENRICO G. VELGADO, FEDERICO VILLAR, JR., ARNEL C. ABEN, ABDULMALIK BACARAMAN, VIRGINIA BORJA, ANTONIO CARANDANG, JR., RINA RIEL DOLINA, MANOLITO FAJARDO, ARVIN B. GARDUQUE, CAYETANO JUAREZ, MA. SHERYL LABONETE, HERCONIDA T. LAZARO, MARITESS MARTINEZ, AURELIO L. MENDOZA, ARNEL M. NOGOT, GERARDO G. POMOY, DENCIO RAMOS, CORAZON TAGUDIN, ANAFEL B. TIO, AGATONA S. ZALATAR, MARGIE EULALIA CALMA, RENEE D. MELLA, ARLIQUIN AMERICA, DEANNA B. AYSON, GERALDINE J. CALICA, CHESTER FERNANDEZ, LUISA I. HERNANDEZ, CYNTHIA E. LISONDRA, ALONA S. LLVATA, CLAIRE P. QUETUA, ROSEMARIE S. QUINTOS, RUTH S. RAMIREZ, LINO VERMUDO, JR., ROLANDO R. APOLONIO, CELIA I. ACCAD, MA. ALMA AYOS, PAMELA CASTILLO, ARNOLD DUPA, LAURENCE FELICIANO, LEANDRO P. LIBRANDO, MARILOU B. LOPEZ, AMELITA P. LUCERO, ESTERBELLE T. SIBALA, JONA ANDAL, ANDRES RATIO, MA. THERESA Q. MALLANO, DANILO P. LIGUA, JOY ABOGADO, VIRGINIA C. STA. ANA, ALBERNARD BAUTISTA, JUBANE DE PEDRO, PAUL DINDO C. DELA CRUZ, ALEJO B. INCISO, SHERWIN MAŅADA, JESUS T. OBIDOS, JOEL B. ARELLANO, ALFREDO CABRERA, MARY LYNN E. GELLOR, JOHN JOSEPH M. MAGTULOY, MICHELLE MONTEMAYOR, RHINA ANGUE, NORBERTO BAYAGA, JR., JUSTINO CALVEZ, EDWIN CONCEPCION, ALAN JOSEPH IBE, CESAR JACINTO, JOSERITA MADRID, IRENE MARTIN, GINA T. QUINDO, RENATO SUBIJANO, NIELMA E. VERZOSA, ALL NATIONAL ELECTRIFICATION ADMINISTRATION EMPLOYEES, REPRESENTED BY REGINA FILOTEO, PETITIONERS, VS. COMMISSION ON AUDIT, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 140528 : December 07, 2011] MARIA TORBELA, REPRESENTED BY HER HEIRS, NAMELY: EULOGIO TOSINO, HUSBAND AND CHILDREN: CLARO, MAXIMINO, CORNELIO, OLIVIA AND CALIXTA, ALL SURNAMED TOSINO, APOLONIA TOSINO VDA. DE RAMIREZ AND JULITA TOSINO DEAN; PEDRO TORBELA, REPRESENTED BY HIS HEIRS, NAMELY: JOSE AND DIONISIO, BOTH SURNAMED TORBELA; EUFROSINA TORBELA ROSARIO, REPRESENTED BY HER HEIRS, NAMELY: ESTEBAN T. ROSARIO, MANUEL T. ROSARIO, ROMULO T. ROSARIO AND ANDREA ROSARIO-HADUCA; LEONILA TORBELA TAMIN; FERNANDO TORBELA, REPRESENTED BY HIS HEIRS, NAMELY: SERGIO T. TORBELA, EUTROPIA T. VELASCO, PILAR T. ZULUETA, CANDIDO T. TORBELA, FLORENTINA T. TORBELA AND PANTALEON T. TORBELA; DOLORES TORBELA TABLADA; LEONORA TORBELA AGUSTIN, REPRESENTED BY HER HEIRS, NAMELY: PATRICIO, SEGUNDO, CONSUELO AND FELIX, ALL SURNAMED AGUSTIN; AND SEVERINA TORBELA ILDEFONSO, PETITIONERS, VS. SPOUSES ANDRES T. ROSARIO AND LENA DUQUE-ROSARIO AND BANCO FILIPINO SAVINGS AND MORTGAGE BANK, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 154113 : December 07, 2011] EDEN GLADYS ABARIA, ROMULO ALFORQUE, ELENA ALLA, EVELYN APOSTOL, AMELIA ARAGON, BEATRIZ ALBASTRO, GLORIA ARDULLES, GLENDA BANTILAN, VIRGILIE BORINAGA, ROLDAN CALDERON, ILDEBRANDO CUTA, ROMEO EMPUERTO, LANNIE FERNANDEZ, LUCINELL GABAYERON, JESUSA GERONA, JOSE GONZAGA, TEOFILO HINAMPAS, JOSEFINA IBUNA, MARLYN LABRA, MARIA CARMENCITA LAO, ERA CANEN, RODNEY REX LERIAS, ERNIE MANLIGAS, JOHANNE DEL MAR, RUBY ORIMACO, CONSTANCIO PAGADOR, MARVELOUS PANAL, NOLAN PANAL, LILLAN PETALLAR, GERNA PATIGDAS, MELODIA PAULIN, SHIRLEY ROSE REYES, JOSEFINA REYES, OSCAR DE LOS SANTOS, SOLOMON DE LOS SANTOS, RAMON TAGNIPIS, BERNADETTE TIBAY, RONALD TUMULAK, LEONCIO VALLINAS, EDELBERTO VILLA AND THE NAGKAHIUSANG MAMUMUO SA METRO CEBU COMMUNITY HOSPITAL, PETITIONERS, VS. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION, METRO CEBU COMMUNITY HOSPITAL, INC., ITS BOARD OF TRUSTEES, REV. GREGORIO IYOY, SHIELA BUOT, REV. LORENZO GENOTIVA, RUBEN CARABAN, RUBEN ESTOYE, LILIA SAURO, REV. ELIZER BERTOLDO, RIZALINA VILLAGANTE, DRA. LUCIA FLORENDO, CONCEPCION VILLEGAS, REV. OLIVER CANEN, DRA. CYD RAGAS, REV. MIKE CAMBA, AVEDNIGO VALIENTE, RIZALINO TAGANAS, CIRIACO PONGASI, ISIAS WAGAS, REV. ESTER GELOAGAN, REV. LEON MANIWAN, CRESENTE BAOAS, WINEFREDA BARLOSO, REV. RUEL MARIGA AND THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST IN THE PHILIPPINES, REV. HILARIO GOMEZ, REV. ELMER BOLOCON, THE NATIONAL FEDERATION OF LABOR AND ARMAND ALFORQUE, RESPONDENTS. G.R. NO. 187778 PERLA NAVA, DANIELA YOSORES, AGUSTIN ALFORNON, AILEEN CATACUTAN, ROLANDO REDILOSA, CORNELIO MARIBOJO, VIRGENCITA CASAS, CRISANTA GENEGABOAS, EMILIO LAO, RICO GASCON, ALBINA BAŅEZ, PEDRO CABATINGAN, PROCOMIO SALUPAN, ELIZABETH RAMON, DIOSCORO GABUNADA, ROY MALAZARTE, FELICIANITA MALAZARTE, NORBERTA CACA, MILAGROS CASTILLO, EDNA ALBO, BERNABE LUMAPGUID, CELIA SABAS, SILVERIO LAO, DARIO LABRADOR, ERNESTO CANEN, JR., ELSA BUCAO, HANNAH BONGCARAS, NEMA BELOCURA, PEPITO LLAGAS, GUILLERMA REMOCALDO, ROGELIO DABATOS, ROBERTO JAYMA, RAYMUNDO DELATADO, MERLYN NODADO, NOEL HORTELANO, HERMELO DELA TORRE, LOURDES OLARTE, DANILO ZAMORA, LUZ CABASE, CATALINA ALSADO, RUTH BANZON AND THE NAGKAHIUSANG MAMUMUO SA METRO CEBU COMMUNITY HOSPITAL, PETITIONERS, VS. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS COMMISSION (FOURTH DIVISION), METRO CEBU COMMUNITY HOSPITAL, INC., BOARD OF TRUSTEES, REV. GREGORIO IYOY, SHIELA BUOT, REV. LORENZO GENOTIVA, RUBEN CABABAN, ROSENDO ESTOYE, LILIA SAURO, REV. ELIZER BERTOLDO, RIZALINA VILLAGANTE, DRA. LUCIA FLORENDO, CONCEPCION VILLEGAS, REV. OLIVER CANEN, DRA. CYD RAAGAS, REV. MIKE CAMBA, AVIDNIGO VALIENTE, RIZALINO TAGANAS, CIRIACO PONGASI, ISIAS WAGAS, REV. ESTER GELOAGAN, REV. LEON MANIWAN, CRESENTE BAOAS, WINIFREDA BARLOSO, REV. RUEL MARIGA, THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST IN THE PHILIPPINES, REV. HILARIO GOMEZ, REV. ELMER BOLOCON, THE NATIONAL FEDERATION OF LABOR AND ARMANDO ALFORQUE, RESPONDENTS. G.R. NO. 187861 METRO CEBU COMMUNITY HOSPITAL, PRESENTLY KNOWN AS VISAYAS COMMUNITY MEDICAL CENTER (VCMC), PETITIONER, VS. PERLA NAVA, DANIELA YOSORES, AGUSTIN ALFORNON, AILEEN CATACUTAN, ROLANDO REDILOSA, CORNELIO MARIBOJO, VIRGENCITA CASAS, CRISANTA GENEGABOAS, EMILIO LAO, RICO GASCON, ALBINA BANEZ, PEDRO CABATINGAN, PROCOMIO SALUPAN, ELIZABETH RAMON, DIOSCORO GABUNADA, ROY MALAZARTE, FELICIANITA MALAZARTE, NORBERTA CACA, MILAGROS CASTILLO, EDNA ALBO, BERNABE LUMABGUID, CELIA SABAS, SILVERIO LAO, DARIO LABRADOR, ERNESTO CANEN, JR., ELSA BUCAO, HANNAH BONGCARAS, NEMA BELOCURA, PEPITO LLAGAS, GUILLERMA REMOCALDO, ROGELIO DABATOS, ROBERTO JAYMA, RAYMUNDO DELATADO, NOEL HORTELANO, HERMELO DE LA TORRE, LOURDES OLARTE, DANILO ZAMORA, LUZ CABASE, CATALINA ALSADO AND RUTH BANZON, RESPONDENTS. G.R. NO. 196156 VISAYAS COMMUNITY MEDICAL CENTER (VCMC) FORMERLY KNOWN AS METRO CEBU COMMUNITY HOSPITAL (MCCH), PETITIONER, VS. ERMA YBALLE, NELIA ANGEL, ELEUTERIA CORTEZ AND EVELYN ONG, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 175816 : December 07, 2011] BPI FAMILY SAVINGS BANK, INC., PETITIONER, VS. MA. ARLYN T. AVENIDO & PACIFICO A. AVENIDO, RESPONDENTS.

  • [A.C. No. 4428 : December 12, 2011] ELPIDIO P. TIONG, COMPLAINANT, VS. ATTY. GEORGE M. FLORENDO, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 182915 : December 12, 2011] MARIALY O. SY, VIVENCIA PENULLAR, AURORA AGUINALDO, GINA ANIANO, GEMMA DELA PEŅA, EFREMIA MATIAS, ROSARIO BALUNSAY, ROSALINDA PARUNGAO, ARACELI RUAZA, REGINA RELOX, TEODORA VENTURA, AMELIA PESCADERO, LYDIA DE GUZMAN, HERMINIA HERNANDEZ, OLIVIA ABUAN, CARMEN PORTUGUEZ, LYDIA PENNULAR, EMERENCIANA WOOD, PRISCILLA ESPINEDA, NANCY FERNANDEZ, EVA MANDURIAGA, CONSOLACION SERRANO, SIONY CASILLAN, LUZVIMINDA GABUYA, MYRNA TAMIN, EVELYN REYES, EVA AYENG, EDNA YAP, RIZA DELA CRUZ ZUŅIGA, TRINIDAD RELOX, MARLON FALLA, MARICEL OCON, AND ELVIRA MACAPAGAL, PETITIONERS, FAIRLAND KNITCRAFT CO., INC., RESPONDENT. [G.R. NO. 189658] SUSAN T. DE LEON, PETITIONER, VS. FAIRLAND KNITCRAFT CO., INC., MARIALY O. SY, VIVENCIA PENULLAR, AURORA AGUINALDO, GINA ANIANO, GEMMA DELA PEŅA, EFREMIA MATIAS, ROSARIO BALUNSAY, ROSALINDA PARUNGAO, ARACELI RUAZA, REGINA RELOX, TEODORA VENTURA, AMELIA PESCADERO, RICHON APARRE, LYDIA DE GUZMAN, HERMINIA HERNANDEZ, OLIVIA ABUAN, CARMEN PORTUGUEZ, LYDIA PENNULAR, EMERENCIANA WOOD, PRISCILLA ESPINEDA, NANCY FERNANDEZ, EVA MANDURIAGA, CONSOLACION SERRANO, SIONY CASILLAN, LUZVIMINDA GABUYA, MYRNA TAMIN, EVELYN REYES, EVA AYENG, EDNA YAP, RIZA DELA CRUZ ZUŅIGA, TRINIDAD RELOX, MARLON FALLA, MARICEL OCON, AND ELVIRA MACAPAGAL, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 165769 : December 12, 2011] EDITO PAGADORA, PETITIONER, VS. JULIETA S. ILAO, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 171993 : December 12, 2011] MARC II MARKETING, INC. AND LUCILA v. JOSON, PETITIONERS, VS. ALFREDO M. JOSON, RESPONDENT.

  • [A.M. No. P-11-2988 (Formerly A.M. No. 11-8-154-RTC) : December 12, 2011] OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR (OCA), COMPLAINANT, VS. ATTY. TEOTIMO D. CRUZ, FORMER OFFICER-IN-CHARGE, OFFICE OF THE CLERK OF COURT, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, SAN MATEO, RIZAL, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 182748 : December 13, 2011] ARNEL COLINARES, PETITIONER, VS. PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, RESPONDENT.

  • [A.C. No. 5355 : December 13, 2011] OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR, PETITIONER, VS. ATTY. DANIEL B. LIANGCO, RESPONDENT.

  • [A.M. No. P-11-2927 [Formerly A.M. OCA IPI No. 10-3532-P] : December 13, 2011] LEAVE DIVISION, OFFICE OF ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES-OFFICE OF THE COURT ADMINISTRATOR (OCA), COMPLAINANT, VS. WILMA SALVACION P. HEUSDENS, CLERK IV MUNICIPAL TRIAL COURT IN CITIES, TAGUM CITY, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 186050 : December 13, 2011] ARTHUR BALAO, WINSTON BALAO, NONETTE BALAO, JONILYN BALAO-STRUGAR AND BEVERLY LONGID, PETITIONERS, VS. GLORIA MACAPAGAL-ARROYO, EDUARDO ERMITA, GILBERTO TEODORO, RONALDO PUNO, NORBERTO GONZALES, GEN. ALEXANDER YANO, GEN. JESUS VERZOSA, BRIG. GEN. REYNALDO MAPAGU, LT. P/DIR. EDGARDO DOROMAL, MAJ. GEN. ISAGANI CACHUELA, COMMANDING OFFICER OF THE AFP-ISU BASED IN BAGUIO CITY, PSS EUGENE MARTIN AND SEVERAL JOHN DOES, RESPONDENTS. [G.R. NO. 186059] PRESIDENT GLORIA MACAPAGAL-ARROYO, SECRETARY EDUARDO ERMITA, SECRETARY GILBERTO TEODORO, SECRETARY RONALDO PUNO, SECRETARY NORBERTO GONZALES, GEN. ALEXANDER YANO, P/DGEN. JESUS VERZOSA, BRIG GEN. REYNALDO MAPAGU, MAJ. GEN. ISAGANI CACHUELA ANDPOL. SR. SUPT. EUGENE MARTIN, PETITIONERS, VS. ARTHUR BALAO, WINSTON BALAO, NONETTE BALAO, JONILYN BALAO-STRUGAR AND BEVERLY LONGID, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 185668 : December 13, 2011] PHILIPPINE AMUSEMENT AND GAMING CORPORATION, PETITIONER, VS. COURT OF APPEALS AND MIA MANAHAN, RESPONDENTS.

  • [A.M. NO. RTJ-07-2069 (FORMERLY OCA I.P.I. NO. 05-2257-RTJ) : December 14, 2011] ESPINA & MADARANG CO. & MAKAR AGRICULTURAL COMMERCIAL & DEVELOPMENT CORP. (MAKAR), REPRESENTED BY RODRIGO A. ADTOON, PETITIONERS, VS. HON. CADER P. INDAR AL HAJ, JUDGE, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, BRANCH 14, REGION 12, COTABATO CITY AND ITS OIC, BRANCH CLERK OF COURT, ABIE M. AMILIL, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 183915 : December 14, 2011] MA. JOY TERESA O. BILBAO, PETITIONER, VS. SAUDI ARABIAN AIRLINES, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 185620 : December 14, 2011] RUBEN C. REYES, PETITIONER, VS. TANG SOAT ING (JOANNA TANG) AND ANDO G. SY, RESPONDENTS.

  • [A.C. No. 7649 : December 14, 2011] SIAO ABA, MIKO LUMABAO, ALMASIS LAUBAN, AND BENJAMIN DANDA, COMPLAINANTS, VS. ATTYS. SALVADOR DE GUZMAN, JR., WENCESLAO "PEEWEE" TRINIDAD, AND ANDRESITO FORNIER, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 175444 : December 14, 2011] JAIME ABALOS AND SPOUSES FELIX SALAZAR AND CONSUELO SALAZAR, GLICERIO ABALOS, HEIRS OF AQUILINO ABALOS, NAMELY: SEGUNDA BAUTISTA, ROGELIO ABALOS, DOLORES A. ROSARIO, FELICIDAD ABALOS, ROBERTO ABALOS, JUANITO ABALOS, TITA ABALOS, LITA A. DELA CRUZ AND HEIRS OF AQUILINA ABALOS, NAMELY: ARTURO BRAVO, PURITA B. MENDOZA, LOURDES B. AGANON, CONSUELO B. SALAZAR, PRIMA B. DELOS SANTOS, THELMA APOSTOL AND GLECERIO ABALOS, PETITIONERS, VS. HEIRS OF VICENTE TORIO, NAMELY: PUBLIO TORIO, LIBORIO TORIO, VICTORINA TORIO, ANGEL TORIO, LADISLAO TORIO, PRIMO TORIO AND NORBERTO TORIO, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 177751 : December 14, 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, APPELLEE, VS. EDDIE AGACER, DEL CASTILLO, AND ELYNOR AGACER, VILLARAMA, JR., JJ. FRANKLIN AGACER AND ERIC AGACER, PROMULGATED: APPELLANTS.

  • [G.R. No. 178218 : December 14, 2011] RAMONA RAMOS AND THE ESTATE OF LUIS T. RAMOS, PETITIONERS, VS. PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK, OPAL PORTFOLIO INVESTMENTS (SPV-AMC), INC. AND GOLDEN DRAGON STAR EQUITIES, INC., RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 196685 : December 14, 2011] GOODLAND COMPANY, INC., PETITIONER, VS. ABRAHAM CO AND CHRISTINE CHAN, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 196063 : December 14, 2011] ORLANDO A. RAYOS, FE A. RAYOS-DELA PAZ, REPRESENTED BY DR. ANTONIO A. RAYOS, AND ENGR. MANUEL A. RAYOS, PETITIONERS, VS. THE CITY OF MANILA, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 191491 : December 14, 2011] JEBSENS MARITIME INC., REPRESENTED BY MS. ARLENE ASUNCION AND/OR ALLIANCE MARINE SERVICES, LTD., PETITIONERS, VS. ENRIQUE UNDAG, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 188376 : December 14, 2011] LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES, PETITIONER, VS. FEDERICO SUNTAY, AS REPRESENTED BY HIS ASSIGNEE, JOSEFINA LUBRICA, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 186530 : December 14, 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. NELLY ULAMA Y ARRISMA, ACCUSED-APPELLANT.

  • [G.R. No. 186131 : December 14, 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. BENJAMIN AMANSEC Y DOŅA, ACCUSED-APPELLANT.

  • [G.R. No. 161718 : December 14, 2011] MANILA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AUTHORITY, PETITIONER, VS. DING VELAYO SPORTS CENTER, INC., RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 183563 : December 14, 2011] PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, VS. HENRY ARPON Y JUNTILLA, ACCUSED-APPELLANT.

  • [G.R. No. 172458 : December 14, 2011] PHILIPPINE NATIONAL BANK, PETITIONER, VS. COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 172553 : December 14, 2011] OFFICE OF THE DEPUTY OMBUDSMAN FOR LUZON, HONORABLE VICTOR C. FERNANDEZ, IN HIS CAPACITY AS DEPUTY OMBUDSMAN FOR LUZON, AND THE GENERAL INVESTIGATION BUREAU-A, REPRESENTED BY MARIA OLIVIA ELENA A. ROXAS, PETITIONERS, VS. JESUS D. FRANCISCO, SR., RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 152375 : December 16, 2011] REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, PETITIONER, VS SANDIGANBAYAN (FOURTH DIVISION), JOSE L. AFRICA (SUBSTITUTED BY HIS HEIRS), MANUEL H. NIETO, JR., FERDINAND E. MARCOS (SUBSTITUTED BY HIS HEIRS), IMELDA R. MARCOS, FERDINAND R. MARCOS, JR., JUAN PONCE ENRILE, AND POTENCIANO ILUSORIO (SUBSTITUTED BY HIS HEIRS), RESPONDENTS.

  • [A.M. No. P-11-3011 (Formerly OCA IPI No. 09-3143-P) : December 16, 2011] EVELINA C. BANAAG, COMPLAINANT, VS. OLIVIA C. ESPELETA, INTERPRETER III, BRANCH 82, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT, QUEZON CITY, RESPONDENT.

  • [G.R. No. 188381 : December 14, 2011] BAGUIO TRINITY DEVELOPERS, INC., HEREIN REPRESENTED BY RICARDO JULIAN, PETITIONER, VS. THE HEIRS OF JOSE RAMOS AND THE HEIRS OF LEOPOLDO AND VICTORINA NEPA; AND THE HONORABLE COURT OF APPEALS, RESPONDENTS.

  • [G.R. No. 172666 : December 07, 2011] PICOP RESOURCES, INCORPORATED (PRI), REPRESENTED IN THIS PETITION BY MR. WILFREDO D. FUENTES, IN HIS CAPACITY AS SENIOR VICE-PRESIDENT AND RESIDENT MANAGER, PETITIONER, VS. RICARDO DEQUILLA, ELMO PABILANDO, CESAR ATIENZA AND ANICETO ORBETA, JR., AND NAMAPRI-SPFI, RESPONDENTS.

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    [A.C. No. 4428 : December 12, 2011]   ELPIDIO P. TIONG, COMPLAINANT, VS. ATTY. GEORGE M. FLORENDO, RESPONDENT.

     
    THIRD DIVISION

    [A.C. No. 4428 : December 12, 2011]

    ELPIDIO P. TIONG, COMPLAINANT, VS. ATTY. GEORGE M. FLORENDO, RESPONDENT.

    D E C I S I O N


    PERLAS-BERNABE, J.:

    Before the Court is an administrative complaint[1] for disbarment filed by Elpidio P. Tiong against Atty. George M. Florendo for gross immorality and grave misconduct.

    The facts of the case are as follows:

    Complainant Elpidio P. Tiong, an American Citizen, and his wife, Ma. Elena T. Tiong, are real estate lessors in Baguio City. They are likewise engaged in the assembly and repair of motor vehicles in Paldit, Sison, Pangasinan. In 1991, they engaged the services of respondent Atty. George M. Florendo not only as legal counsel but also as administrator of their businesses whenever complainant would leave for the United States of America (USA).

    Sometime in 1993, complainant began to suspect that respondent and his wife were having an illicit affair. His suspicion was confirmed in the afternoon of May 13, 1995 when, in their residence, he chanced upon a telephone conversation between the two. Listening through the extension phone, he heard respondent utter the words "I love you, I'll call you later". When confronted, his wife initially denied any amorous involvement with respondent but eventually broke down and confessed to their love affair that began in 1993. Respondent likewise admitted the relationship. Subsequently, at a meeting initiated by respondent and held at the Salibao Restaurant in Burnham Park, Baguio City, respondent and complainant's wife, Ma. Elena, confessed anew to their illicit affair before their respective spouses.

    On May 15, 1995, the parties met again at the Mandarin Restaurant in Baguio City and, in the presence of a Notary Public, Atty. Liberato Tadeo, respondent and Ma. Elena executed and signed an affidavit[2] attesting to their illicit relationship and seeking their respective spouses' forgiveness, as follows:

    "WE, GEORGE M. FLORENDO, a resident of Baguio City and of legal age and MA. ELENA T. TIONG, likewise a resident of Baguio City, of legal age, depose and state:

    We committed adultery against our spouses from May 1993 to May 13, 1995 and we hereby ask forgiveness and assure our spouses that this thing will never happen again with us or any other person. We assure that we will no longer see each other nor have any communication directly or indirectly. We shall comply with our duties as husband and wife to our spouses and assure that there will be no violence against them. That any behaviour unbecoming a husband or wife henceforth shall give rise to legal action against us; We shall never violate this assurance;

    We, the offended spouses Elizabeth F. Florendo and Elpidio Tiong forgive our spouses and assure them that we will not institute any criminal or legal action against them because we have forgiven them. If they violate this agreement we will institute legal action.

    This document consists of four (4) typewritten copies and each party has been furnished a copy and this document shall have no validity unless signed by all the parties.

    IN WITNESS WHEREOF, we have set out hands this 15th day of May 1995 at Baguio City, Philippines.

    (SIGNED)
    GEORGE M. FLORENDO
    (SIGNED)
    ELPIDIO TIONG
    (SIGNED)
    MA. ELENA T. TIONG
    (SIGNED)
    ELIZABETH F. FLORENDO"

    Notwithstanding, complainant instituted the present suit for disbarment on May 23, 1995 charging respondent of gross immorality and grave misconduct. In his Answer[3], respondent admitted the material allegations of the complaint but interposed the defense of pardon.

    In the Resolution[4] dated September 20, 1995, the Court resolved to refer the case to the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) for investigation and decision.

    Finding merit in the complaint, the Commission on Bar Discipline (CBD), through Commissioner Agustinus V. Gonzaga, submitted its Report and Recommendation[5] dated September 21, 2007 for the suspension of respondent from the practice of law for one (1) year, which was adopted and approved by the IBP Board of Governors in its Resolution[6] dated October 19, 2007. Respondent's Motion for Reconsideration[7] therefrom was denied in the Resolution[8] dated June 26, 2011.

    Hence, the instant petition on the sole issue - whether the pardon extended by complainant in the Affidavit dated May 15, 1995 is sufficient to warrant the dismissal of the present disbarment case against respondent for gross immoral conduct.

    After due consideration, the Court resolves to adopt the findings and recommendation of the IBP-CBD except as to the penalty imposed.

    The pertinent provisions in the Code of Professional Responsibility provide, thus:

    "CANON 1 - A LAWYER SHALL UPHOLD THE CONSTITUTION, OBEY THE LAWS OF THE LAND AND PROMOTE RESPECT FOR LAW AND LEGAL PROCESSES.

    Rule 1.01. - A lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest, immoral or deceitful conduct.

    xxxx

    CANON 7 - A LAWYER SHALL AT ALL TIMES UPHOLD THE INTEGRITY AND DIGNITY OF THE LEGAL PROFESSION AND SUPPORT THE ACTIVITIES OF THE INTEGRATED BAR.

    xxxx

    Rule 7.03. - A lawyer shall not engage in conduct that adversely reflects on his fitness to practice law, nor shall he, whether in public or private life, behave in a scandalous manner to the discredit of the legal profession."

    It has been consistently held by the Court that possession of good moral character is not only a condition for admission to the Bar but is a continuing requirement to maintain one's good standing in the legal profession. It is the bounden duty of law practitioners to observe the highest degree of morality in order to safeguard the integrity of the Bar.[9] Consequently, any errant behaviour on the part of a lawyer, be it in his public or private activities, which tends to show him deficient in moral character, honesty, probity or good demeanor, is sufficient to warrant his suspension or disbarment.

    In this case, respondent admitted his illicit relationship with a married woman not his wife, and worse, that of his client. Contrary to respondent's claim, their consortium cannot be classified as a mere "moment of indiscretion"[10] considering that it lasted for two (2) years and was only aborted when complainant overheard their amorous phone conversation on March 13, 1995.

    Respondent's act of having an affair with his client's wife manifested his disrespect for the laws on the sanctity of marriage and his own marital vow of fidelity. It showed his utmost moral depravity and low regard for the ethics of his profession.[11] Likewise, he violated the trust and confidence reposed on him by complainant which in itself is prohibited under Canon 17[12] of the Code of Professional Responsibility. Undeniably, therefore, his illicit relationship with Ma. Elena amounts to a disgraceful and grossly immoral conduct warranting disciplinary action from the Court.[13] Section 27, Rule 138 of the Rules of Court provides that an attorney may be disbarred or suspended from his office by the Court for any deceit, malpractice, or other gross misconduct in office, grossly immoral conduct, among others.

    Respondent, however, maintains that he cannot be sanctioned for his questioned conduct because he and Ma. Elena had already been pardoned by their respective spouses in the May 15, 1995 Affidavit[14].

    The Court disagrees.

    It bears to stress that a case of suspension or disbarment is sui generis and not meant to grant relief to a complainant as in a civil case but is intended to cleanse the ranks of the legal profession of its undesirable members in order to protect the public and the courts. It is not an investigation into the acts of respondent as a husband but on his conduct as an officer of the Court and his fitness to continue as a member of the Bar.[15] Hence, the Affidavit dated March 15, 1995, which is akin to an affidavit of desistance, cannot have the effect of abating the instant proceedings.[16]

    However, considering the circumstances of this case, the Court finds that a penalty of suspension from the practice of law for six (6) months, instead of one (1) year as recommended by the IBP-CBD, is adequate sanction for the grossly immoral conduct of respondent.

    WHEREFORE, respondent ATTY. GEORGE M. FLORENDO is hereby found GUILTY of Gross Immorality and is SUSPENDED from the practice of law for SIX (6) MONTHS effective upon notice hereof, with a STERN WARNING that a repetition of the same or similar offense will be dealt with more severely.

    Let copies of this Decision be entered in the personal record of respondent as a member of the Philippine Bar and furnished the Office of the Bar Confidant, the Integrated Bar of the Philippines and the Court Administrator for circulation to all courts in the country.

    SO ORDERED.

    Velasco, Jr., (Chairperson), Peralta, Abad, and Mendoza, JJ., concur.

    Endnotes:


    [1] Rollo, Vol. I, pp. 1-4.

    [2] Id., p. 5.

    [3] Id., pp. 13-14.

    [4] Id., p. 18.

    [5] Id., Vol. III, pp. 2-10.

    [6] Id., p. 1.

    [7] Id., pp. 11-14.

    [8] Id., p. 21.

    [9] Advincula vs. Macabata, A.C. No. 7204, March 7, 2007, 517 SCRA 600.

    [10] Rollo, Vol. I, p. 13.

    [11] Guevarra vs. Eala, A.C. No. 7136, August 1, 2007, 529 SCRA 1.

    [12] "CANON 17. A LAWYER OWES FIDELITY TO THE CAUSE OF HIS CLIENT AND HE SHALL BE MINDFUL OF THE TRUST AND CONFIDENCE REPOSED IN HIM."

    [13] Samaniego vs. Ferrer, A.C. No. 7022, June 18, 2008, 555 SCRA 1.

    [14] Supra note 2.

    [15] Supra note 13.

    [16] Garrido vs. Garrido, A.C. No. 6593, February 4, 2010, 611 SCRA 508.

    [A.C. No. 4428 : December 12, 2011]   ELPIDIO P. TIONG, COMPLAINANT, VS. ATTY. GEORGE M. FLORENDO, RESPONDENT.




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