December 2008 - Philippine Supreme Court Decisions/Resolutions
G.R. No. 173473 - G.R. No. 173473 - AZCUNA - SEPARATE DISSENTING OPINION
[G.R. NO. 173473 : December 17, 2008]
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Appellee, v. BETH TEMPORADA, Appellant.
SEPARATE DISSENTING OPINION
I join the Chief Justice in his dissent.
The penalty for estafa is a unique one, in a class by itself. The penalty prescribed by law depends on the amount involved. If it does not exceed
P22,000, it is the penalty stated in par. 2(a) of Art. 315 of the Revised Penal Code, i.e., prision correccional maximum to prision mayor minimum. If it exceeds P22,000, it is that penalty plus one year for every P10,000, but in no case more than 20 years. Then the law states that in that event the penalty should be "termed" prision mayor or reclusion temporal, "as the case may be."
Accordingly, if the amount involved is, say,
P500 Million, the penalty prescribed by law is reclusion temporal. Hence, the penalty one degree lower than that is prision mayor and it is within this one-degree lower penalty, i.e., prision mayor, that the minimum of the indeterminate sentence is to be fixed.
ADOLFO S. AZCUNA