TO : ALL
of imprisonment for violations of Batas
Pambansa Blg. 22; and
imprisonment in the event that the accused who is found guilty of
the provisions of B.P.
Blg. 22, is unable to pay the fine which he is sentenced to pay
Circular No. 12-2000 adopted the rulings in Eduardo Vaca v.
of Appeals (G.R. No. 131714, 16 November 1998, 298 SCRA 656) and
Rosa Lim v. People of the Philippines (G.R. No. 130038, 18 September
as a policy of the Supreme Court on the matter of the imposition of
for violations of B.P.
Blg. 22, without mentioning whether subsidiary imprisonment could
resorted to in case of the accused's inability to pay the fine.cralaw
The pursuit of this
purpose clearly does not foreclose the possibility of imprisonment for
violations of B.P.
Blg. 22. Neither does it defeat the legislative intent behind the
Circular No. 12-2000 establishes a rule of preference in the
of the penal provisions of B.P.
Blg. 22 such that where the circumstances of both the offense and
offender clearly indicate good faith or a clear mistake of fact without
taint of negligence, the imposition of a fine alone should be
as the more appropriate penalty. Needless to say, the determination of
whether the circumstances warrant the imposition of a fine alone rests
solely upon the Judge. Should the Judge decide that imprisonment is the
more appropriate penalty, Administrative
Circular No. 12-2000 ought not be deemed a hindrance.cralaw
It is, therefore,
Circular 12-2000 does not remove imprisonment as an alternative
for violations of B.P.
may, in the exercise of sound discretion, and taking into consideration
the peculiar circumstances of each case, determine whether the
of a fine alone would best serve the interests of justice or whether
to impose imprisonment would depreciate the seriousness of the offense,
work violence on the social order, or otherwise be contrary to the
fine be imposed and the accused be unable to pay the fine, there is no
legal obstacle to the application of the Revised
Penal Code provisions on subsidiary imprisonment.cralaw
The issuance of this
Administrative Circular was authorized by the Court En Banc in
No. 00-11-01-SC at its session of 13 February 2001.
The Clerk of Court
of the Supreme Court and the Court Administrator shall immediately
the implementation of this Administrative Circular.cralaw
Circular shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation not
than 20 February 2001.
day of February, 2001.cralaw