Philippine Supreme Court Jurisprudence


Philippine Supreme Court Jurisprudence > Year 1916 > September 1916 Decisions > G.R. No. 11659 September 26, 1916 - DY CHIAN v. THE INSULAR COLLECTOR OF CUSTOMS

035 Phil 10:




PHILIPPINE SUPREME COURT DECISIONS

SECOND DIVISION

[G.R. No. 11659. September 26, 1916. ]

DY CHIAN, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. THE INSULAR COLLECTOR OF CUSTOMS, Defendant-Appellee.

Williams, Ferrier & SyCip for Appellant.

Attorney-General Avenceña for Appellee.

SYLLABUS


1. ALIENS; CHINESE EXCLUSION AND DEPORTATION; RIGHT OF LABORER TO RETURN; PERIOD. —A Chinese laborer duly registered may leave the teritory of the United States and return within a period of one year nor within the second year he loses his right to return absolutely.

2. ID.; ID.;LABORER’S CERTIFICATE ISSUED TO MERCHANT BY MISTAKE. —A Chinese merchant and resident of the Philippine Islands duly registered in accordance with the provision of the law has the right to go and come enter and depart from the territoryof the United States as anyother resident; and the mere fact that under the misapprehension of his rights a laborer’s certificate was issued to him will not change his status theretofore established by the certificate issued to him by the proper department of Government cerftifying that he was a merchant during the period when Chinese residence of the Philippine Islands were required to register. His status as a merchant having been established by the certificate of residence he still retains the privileges of a merchant although he subsequently became a laborer, so far of his right to remain in the Phillipine Island is concerned; provided said merchant’s certificate was obtained legally and without fraud or deceit.


D E C I S I O N


JOHNSON, J. :


This action arose by the presentation of a petition for the wirt of habeas corpus in the Court of First Instance of the city of Manila Due return was made by the Attorney-General to the said petition. After hearing the respective parties the Honorable Simplicio del Rosario reached the conclusion that the petitioner was not entitled to the writ prayed for and ordered him deported, and for that purpose ordered him returned to the custody of the Insular Collector of Customs. From that judgment thepetitioner appealed to this court.

From an examination of the record certain facts appear to be undisputed: First, that on the 18th of February, 1904 a "certificate of residence" was issued to the appellant, in accordance with the provisions of Act No. 702 of the Philippine Commission. By reference to said certificate it appears that the appellant was at that time lawfully entitled to remain in the Philippine Island; second, that on the 7th of January 1914, the appellant desiring to visit China, obtained from the Insular Collector of Customs a certificate which generally known as a "Chinese laborer’s return certificate;" third, that on the 7th of January, 1914, the appellant departed from the city of Manila for China on a temporary visit; fourth, that he returned to the city of Manila on the steamship Linan on the 17th of December , 1915, and tried to enter the Philippine Islands upon the theory that he had not returned within the period of one year from the date of his departure and had not obtained an extension of that period.

The petitioner and appellant was refused his right to enter the Philippine Islands, upon his return on the 17th of December, 1915 upon the theory that he was a laborer; that he had left the Philippine Island fand had not returned within one year within which to return. If the petitioner is, in fact , a laborer and did not return within the period of one year, nor within the second year after having, in accordance with the provisions of law, secured an extension of time, he has lost his right to reenter the Philippine Islands. (Tin Lio v. Collector of Customs, 32 Phil. Rep., 32; U.S. v. Vy Bo Tec, 34 Phil. Rep., 260 Act of Congress of April 29th, 1902.)

Upon the other hand, if the appellant is, in fact, a merchant, as appears by the certificate of residence issued to him by the Collector of Customs of the Philippine Islands and is entitled to remain in the Philippine Islands, in accordance with the said certificate issued under Act No. 702, then as such resident, he would have a right to go and come, enter and depart at his own pleasure. Said certificate of residence was issued in the month of February, 1904. It is contended, however, that inasmuch as the appellant obtained the said "Chinese laborer’s return certificate" in 1914, he is a laborer and not a merchant. No explanation is found in the record showing why the appellant obtained the "Chinese laborer’s return certificate" in 1914, when he was already possessed of a certificateshowing that he was a merchant and entitled to reside in the Philippine Islands in 1904. The "Chinese laborer’s return certificate" must have been obtained under a mistaken view of his rights, for the reason that he was possessed at that time and had been for a period of ten years, of a certificate, issued by the Collector of Customs, showing conclusively that he was not a laborer, but was a merchant. The fact having been established in 1904 by an investigation by the department of customs and a certificate issued to the effect that he was a merchant and not a laborerthat the status so so far as it affects his right to remain in the Philippine Islands, continues even though he has subsequently become a laborer. His status as a merchant having been established by a certificate of residence which was issued to him in 1904, he still retains the privileges of a merchant, although he subsequently became a laborer, so far as his right to remain in the Philippine Islands is concerned. (Lim Pue v. Collector of Customs, 33 Phil. Rep., 519; U. S. v. Ye Chung, 30 Phil. Rep., 151; U. S. v. Li Sui Wum, 32 Phil. Rep., 151; U. S. v. Lim Kiu Eng, 31 Phil Rep., 115.) Neither do we believe that he has lost his right to enter the Philippine Islands simply because he did, without fully understanding his right, obtain a laborer’s return certificate.

No claim is made that the certificate of residence issued to the appellant in 1904 was issued to him by any reason of any false representation made by him. No effort has been made to cancel it. It is still in full force and effect. Not only does said certificate of residence conclusively show that his status was that of a merchant, but an examination of the proof adduced during the hearing in the department of customs shows conclusively that he continued to be a merchant up to the time when he obtained the "Chinese laborer’s return certificate" on January 17, 1914. Said certificate of residence, considered in relation with the proof adduced during the hearing, clearly shows that the appellant did not understand his rights at that time he returned to China in the month of January, 1914, for a temporary visit. The Collector of Customs having clothed the appellant with positive proof of his status as a merchant in 1904 should not now be heard to say that he was not a merchant at that time.

The Attorney-General, in a carefully prepared brief supported by much authority, recommends that the judgment of the lower court ordering the appellant deported be revoked and that the applellant be set at liberty. In that recommendation we concur for the reasons stated above. It is clear an abuse of authority on the part of the Insular Collector of Customs to refuse to a resident of the Philippine Islands, who is armed with a certificate of his right to remain therein, a right to return to the Island when he has left for a temporary visit abroad. We fully agree with the recommendation of the Attorney-General.

It is therefore hereby ordered and decreed that the judgment of the lower court be revoked, and it is hereby ordered and decreed that a judgment be entered to the effect that the appellant be ordered discharged from the custody of the law, with costs de officio. so ordered.

Torres, Carson, Moreland, Trent, and Araullo, JJ., concur.




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