When is the payment of damages as well as attorney’s fees proper?

In a Supreme Court case, the following damages were awarded:

“xxx

The RTC awarded moral damages, exemplary damages, attorney’s fees, plus P2,000.00 for every appearance, and costs of litigation.

.
Moral damages are meant to compensate the claimant for any physical suffering, mental anguish, fright, serious anxiety, besmirched reputation, wounded feelings, moral shock, social humiliation, and similar injuries unjustly caused. Petitioner Rosalina has adequately established the factual basis for the award of moral damages when she testified that she felt shocked and horrified upon knowing of the foreclosure sale.

.

However, we find the RTC’s award of P2,000,000.00 excessive and unconscionable, and reduce the salve to P100,000.00.
.

Exemplary damages are imposed by way of example for the public good, in addition to moral, temperate, liquidated or compensatory damages. We reduce the RTC’s award of P500,000.00 to P30,000.00.
.

Attorneys fees are allowed when exemplary damages are awarded and when the party to a suit is compelled to incur expenses to protect his interest. We find the RTC’s award of attorney’s fees in the amount of P100,000.00 proper.

xxx”

From the case of SPOUSES GILDARDO LOQUELLANO and ROSALINA JULIET B. LOQUELLANO, petitioners, xxx

Alcantara Alcoy moral damages Alegria actual damages Aloguinsan Argao Asturias Badian Balamban Bantayan Barili Boljoon Borbon Carmen Catmon Compostela Consolacion Cordova Daanbantayan Dumaguete Bais Sibulan Tampi Bacong Negros Bacolod Separation pay Resign Resignation Back wages Backwages Length of service pay benefit employee employer relationship Silay Kabankalan Daan Bantayan Dalaguete Dumanjug Ginatilan Liloan compensatory damages Madridejos Malabuyoc Medellin Minglanilla Moalboal Oslob Pilar Pinamungajan Poro Ronda Samboan San Fernando San Francisco San Remigio Sante Fe Santander Sibonga Sogod Tabogon Tabuelan Tuburan attorney’s fees Tudela exemplary damages Camotes General Luna Siargao Cagayan Davao Kidapawan Attorney Abogado Lawyer Architect Real Estate Broker nominal damages Sales Agent Properties for Sale Looking for Buyers Design Build House and Lot for Sale for Rent Talisay City Mandaue City Lapu Lapu Lapu-Lapu City Yncierto Sesante Villanueva Ruz Jan Edmond Marc Tim Timothy temperate damages Luz liquidated damages Kristin tct transfer certificate of title tax declaration birth certificate relocation survey surveying judicial titling administrative titling patent title denr cenro foreshore lease ecc environmental compliance certificate design build architect cebu engineer interior design designer residential commercial cebu property warehouse for rent for lease marc Christian yncierto ruz jan Edmond yncierto ruz Kristin Villanueva ruz Edmond mabalot ruz marriage certificate timber land forest land watershed agricultural lot land use conversion hearing trial illegal drugs trial lawyer business corporate lawyer labor lawyer immigration law bureau of immigration cebu 9g visa search warrant warrant of arrest motion to quash information complaint police officers buy bust physical suffering shocked horrified mental anguish fright serious anxiety besmirched reputation sleepless nights wounded feelings moral shock social humiliation similar injuries

A case on the law on WARRANTS; Search warrant and Warrant of arrest

The facts are as follows:
.

On March 31, 2015, before the Regional Trial Court of Calapan City, Branch 40 (RTC), Police Superintendent Jaycees De Sagun Tolentino (Tolentino) filed two (2) separate applications for search warrants against Maderazo, Nestor Alea (Alea), Daren Mabansag (Mabansag) and Lovely Joy Alcantara (Alcantara). In his search warrant applications, Tolentino alleged that he has been informed by barangay officials, Loida Tapere Roco (Roco) and Rexcel Lozano Rivera (Rivera), that Maderazo, along with Alea, Mabansag and Alcantara, is keeping an undetermined quantity of dangerous drugs, drug paraphernalia, and firearms of unknown caliber and ammunitions inside his residence in Barangay Lazareto, Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro.

.
According to Roco and Rivera, at 6 o’clock in the morning of March 31, 2015, they learned that members of the Calapan City Police Station will be serving a warrant of arrest against Maderazo for attempted murder. When they reached the house which Maderazo is renting, the latter was already arrested. As barangay officials, Roco and Rivera decided to talk to Maderazo, who admitted to them that he is keeping inside the subject house approximately 40 grams of illegal drugs, drug paraphernalia, and a firearm. Tolentino allegedly verified said informations through casing and surveillance.
.

On March 31, 2015, after the preliminary investigation of witnesses Roco and Rivera, under oath, Executive Judge Tomas C. Leynes (Judge Leynes) issued Search Warrant No. 09-2015 for violation of Republic Act (R.A.) No. 9165 and Search Warrant No. 10-2015 for violation of R.A. No. 10591. On even date, both search warrants were served in the subject house in Barangay Lazareto, Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro. By virtue of the search warrants, police officers recovered heat-sealed transparent plastic sachets which were suspected to be containing shabu, various drug paraphernalia, a .38 caliber revolver, live ammunitions, mobile phones, computer laptop, cash, among others, from the premises.
.

Maderazo, Alea, and Mabansag were, subsequently, charged with illegal possession of dangerous drugs and drug paraphernalia, and illegal possession of firearm respectively docketed as Criminal Case Nos. CR-15-12, 201, CR-15-12, 202, and CR-15-12, 203.
.

On July 1, 2015, Maderazo filed the Motion to Quash, arguing that Search Warrant Nos. 09-2015 and 10-2015 were issued without probable cause; thus, all items seized by virtue of their enforcement were inadmissible in evidence. He claimed that Tolentino did not have personal knowledge of Maderazo’s supposed possession of illegal drugs and an unlicensed firearm, because the police officer merely relied on Roco and Rivera’s statements. Maderazo insisted that Tolentino lied when he stated that the Calapan City Police conducted prior surveillance and casing because the same could not have possibly happened, considering that he was already under police custody in the morning of March 31, 2015, and the house subject of the search was cordoned off.
.

Maderazo further asserted that nothing in the records show how and when Tolentino conducted the casing and surveillance. The statements of Roco and Rivera cannot also be given probative value, since the information that Maderazo has in his custody illegal drugs, drug paraphernalia, and an unlicensed firearm were not derived from their own perception but allegedly from Maderazo’s own admission.
.

Thereafter, Maderazo requested for certified true copy of the transcript of stenographic notes (TSN) of the proceedings conducted on March 31, 2015 regarding the application for Search Warrant Nos. 09-2015 and 10-2015. Subsequently, Maderazo manifested that instead of the TSN, he was only given copies of Roco, Rivera, and Cueto’s respective sworn statements which bear exactly the same questions and answers, except for their personal circumstances.
.

On August 14, 2015, the trial court rendered its Order denying the motion to quash. The dispositive portion of its Order reads:
.

ACCORDINGLY, the Omnibus Motion to Quash Search Warrant(s) and to Suppress Evidence filed by all the accused, through counsel, is hereby DENIED for lack of merit.

.
Maderazo moved for reconsideration, but the same was denied in its September 21, 2015 Order.
.

Thus, before the appellate court, Maderazo filed a petition for certiorari alleging grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction on the part of the trial court when it denied the motion to quash search warrants.

.
On April 26, 2017, the CA granted the petition for certiorari, and nullified and set aside Search Warrant Nos. 09-2015 and 10-2015. It, likewise, held that the items allegedly seized in the house being rented by Maderazo by virtue of the said search warrants are inadmissible in evidence against him since the access therein by the police officers used void search warrants.
Aggrieved, petitioner raised the lone issue of whether or not the Honorable Court of Appeals erred in ruling that Judge Leynes committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction in issuing the assailed Orders dated August 14, 2015 and September 21, 2015 in Criminal Case Nos. CR-15-12-201 to 203, denying respondent’s motion to quash the subject search warrants.
.

Maderazo asserted that there was no probable cause for the issuance of Search Warrant Nos. 09-2015 and 10-2015. He added that Judge Leynes did not personally examine P/Supt. Tolentino and his witnesses through searching questions and answers. He alleged that there was no TSN of the supposed personal examination of the judge attached to the records of the case. He asserted that the sworn statements of Roco, Rivera, and Cueto were not based on their personal knowledge but on the alleged admission of Maderazo.
The Office of the Solicitor General (OSG), meanwhile, countered that while there may be no actual TSNs of the proceedings, the sworn statements of witnesses Roco, Rivera and Cueto are actual written records of the preliminary examination conducted by Judge Leynes. It insisted that the admission of Maderazo constituted probable cause which was determined by Judge Leynes after personally examining the witnesses.
.

The petition has no merit.
The rules pertaining to the issuance of search warrants are enshrined in Section 2, Article III of the 1987 Constitution:
.

Section 2. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature and for any purpose shall be inviolable, and no search warrant or warrant of arrest shall issue except upon probable cause to be determined personally by the judge after examination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.

.
The purpose of the constitutional provision against unlawful searches and seizures is to prevent violations of private security in person and property, and unlawful invasion of the sanctity of the home, by officers of the law acting under legislative or judicial sanction, and to give remedy against such usurpations when attempted.

.
Corollarily, Sections 4 and 5 of Rule 126 of the 2000 Rules on Criminal Procedure provide for the requisites for the issuance of a search warrant, to wit:
.

SEC. 4. Requisites for issuing search warrant. — A search warrant shall not issue except upon probable cause in connection with one specific offense to be determined personally by the judge after examination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witness he may produce, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the things to be seized which may be anywhere in the Philippines.
.

SEC. 5. Examination of complainant; record. — The judge must, before issuing the warrant, personally examine in the form of searching questions and answers, in writing and under oath, the complainant and the witnesses he may produce on facts personally known to them and attach to the record their sworn statements, together with the affidavits submitted.

.
To paraphrase this rule, a search warrant may be issued only if there is probable cause in connection with a specific offense alleged in an application based on the personal knowledge of the applicant and his witnesses. This is the substantive requirement for the issuance of a search warrant. Procedurally, the determination of probable cause is a personal task of the judge before whom the application for search warrant is filed, as he has to examine the applicant and his or her witnesses in the form of “searching questions and answers” in writing and under oath.


Thus, in Oebanda, et al. v. People, the Court held that, in determining the existence of probable cause in an application for search warrant, the mandate of the judge is for him to conduct a full and searching examination of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce. The searching questions propounded to the applicant and the witnesses must depend on a large extent upon the discretion of the judge. Although there is no hard-and-fast rule as to how a judge may conduct his examination, it is axiomatic that the said examination must be probing and exhaustive and not merely routinary, general, peripheral or perfunctory.

.

He must make his own inquiry on the intent and factual and legal justifications for a search warrant. The questions should not merely be repetitious of the averments stated in the affidavits/deposition of the applicant and the witnesses.

Tags: San Remigio Sante Fe Santander Sibonga Sogod Tabogon Tabuelan Tuburan Tudela Camotes General Luna Siargao Cagayan Davao Kidapawan Attorney Abogado Lawyer Architect Real Estate Broker Sales Agent Properties for Sale Looking for Buyers Design Build House and Lot for Sale for Rent Talisay City Mandaue City Lapu Lapu Lapu-Lapu City Yncierto Sesante Villanueva Ruz Jan Edmond Marc Tim Timothy Luz Kristin tct transfer certificate of title tax declaration birth certificate relocation survey surveying judicial titling administrative titling

Alcantara Alcoy Alegria Aloguinsan Argao Asturias Badian Balamban Bantayan Barili Boljoon Borbon Carmen Catmon Compostela Consolacion Cordova Daanbantayan Dumaguete Bais Sibulan Tampi Bacong Negros Bacolod Silay Kabankalan Daan Bantayan Dalaguete Dumanjug Ginatilan Liloan Madridejos Malabuyoc Medellin Minglanilla Moalboal Oslob Pilar Pinamungajan Poro Ronda Samboan San Fernando San Francisco

titling patent title denr cenro foreshore lease ecc environmental compliance certificate design build architect cebu engineer interior design designer residential commercial cebu property warehouse for rent for lease marc Christian yncierto ruz jan Edmond yncierto ruz Kristin Villanueva ruz Edmond mabalot ruz marriage certificate timber land forest land watershed agricultural lot land use conversion hearing trial illegal drugs trial lawyer business corporate lawyer labor lawyer immigration law bureau of immigration cebu 9g visa search warrant warrant of arrest motion to quash information complaint police officers buy bust

Attacking a court decision

The attack against the validity of the decision is entirely bereft of merit and justification.

.
For sure, every party-litigant has the right to an impartial and disinterested tribunal. In view of this right, every party may seek the inhibition or disqualification of a judge who does not appear to be wholly free, disinterested, impartial and independent in handling a case. Nonetheless, the invocation of the right is always weighed against the duty of the judge to decide cases without fear of repression.

.
The motion by the litigant for the inhibition or disqualification of a judge is regulated by the Rules of Court. Section 1, first paragraph, Rule 137 of the Rules of Court stipulates that a judge or judicial officer shall be mandatorily disqualified to sit in any of the instances enumerated therein, namely: where he, or his wife or child is pecuniarily interested as heir, legatee, creditor or otherwise; or where he is related to either party within the sixth degree of consanguinity or affinity; or where he is related to counsel within the fourth degree; or where he has been executor, administrator, guardian, trustee or counsel; or where he has presided in any inferior court, and his ruling or decision is the subject of review. The second paragraph of the rule concerns voluntary inhibition, and allows the judge, in the exercise of his sound discretion, to disqualify himself from sitting in a case “for just or valid reasons other than those mentioned above.” The exercise of discretion for this purpose is a matter of conscience for him, and is addressed primarily to his sense of fairness and justice.

.
The grounds for the mandatory inhibition of the Members of the Court, which are analogous to those mentioned in Rule 137 of the Rules of Court, are embodied in Section 1, Rule 8 of the Internal Rules of the Supreme Court, quoted as follows:
Section 1. Grounds for inhibition. — A Member of the Court shall inhibit himself or herself from participating in the resolution of the case for any of these and similar reasons:

.
(a) The Member of the Court was the ponente of the decision or participated in the proceedings in the appellate or trial court;
.

(b) The Member of the Court was counsel, partner, or member of a law firm that is or was the counsel in the case subject to Section 3(c) of this rule;
.

(c) The Member of the Court or his or her spouse, parent or child is pecuniarily interested in the case;
.

(d) The Member of the Court is related to either party in the case within the sixth degree of consanguinity or affinity;
.

(e) The Member of the Court was executor, administrator, guardian or trustee in the case; and
.

(f) The Member of the Court was an official or is the spouse of an official or former official of a government agency or private entity that is a party to the case, and the Justice or his or her spouse has reviewed or acted on any matter relating to the case.
.

A Member of the Court may in the exercise of his or her sound discretion, inhibit himself or herself for a just or valid reason other than any of those mentioned above.
The inhibiting Member must state the precise reason for the inhibition.
.

The grounds for seeking the inhibition of the Members of the Court must be stated in the motion. Yet, in now seeking the inhibition of all the Members of the Third Division who have ruled on the appeal, respondents neither advert to any of the grounds for mandatory inhibition nor point to the bias or partiality of said Members. Their motion only suggests that the earlier voluntary inhibition by Justice Velasco would not deter him from wielding undue influence over the remaining Members of the Third Division because he remained their Chairman.
.

The suggestion assaults not only Justice Velasco’s character but also the character of the remaining Members of the Third Division. The assault is both unfair, and even worse, presumptuous. Indeed, Justice Velasco, following his self-disqualification, had nothing more to do with the case. At any rate, respondents ignore that the remaining Members of the Third Division would not be influenced by a disqualified Member upon matters involved in the case in which the latter no longer takes part.

.
Moreover, respondents’ calling now for the inhibition of the Members of the Third Division only after they had rendered their decision adversely was no longer a viable remedy. Under Section 2, Rule 8 of the Internal Rules of the Supreme Court, the granting of any motion for the inhibition of a Division or a Member of the Court after a decision on the merits of the case had been rendered is forbidden except if there is some valid or just reason (such as a showing of graft and corrupt practice, or such as a valid ground not earlier apparent).
.

Respondents’ motion to refer the case to the Court En Banc is equally unworthy of consideration. In this regard, the grounds to justify a referral of any case to the Banc are long recognized. Section 3, Rule 2 of the Internal Rules of the Supreme Court specifically enumerates the matters and cases that the Court En Banc shall act on, viz.:
SEC. 3. Court en banc matters and cases. — The Court en banc shall act on the following matters and cases:
.

(a) cases in which the constitutionality or validity of any treaty, international or executive agreement, law, executive order, presidential decree, proclamation, order, instruction, ordinance, or regulation is in question;

(b) criminal cases in which the appealed decision imposes the death penalty or reclusion perpetua;

(c) cases raising novel questions of law;

(d) cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers, and consuls;
(e) cases involving decisions, resolutions, and orders of the Civil Service Commission, the Commission on Elections, and the Commission on Audit;
(f) cases where the penalty recommended or imposed is the dismissal of a judge, the disbarment of a lawyer, the suspension of any of them for a period of more than one year, or a fine exceeding forty thousand pesos;
(g) cases covered by the preceding paragraph and involving the reinstatement in the judiciary of a dismissed judge, the reinstatement of a lawyer in the roll of attorneys, or the lifting of a judge’s suspension or a lawyer’s suspension from the practice of law;
(h) cases involving the discipline of a Member of the Court, or a Presiding Justice, or any Associate Justice of the collegial appellate courts;
(i) cases where a doctrine or principle laid down by the Court en banc or by a Division may be modified or reversed;
(j) cases involving conflicting decisions of two or more divisions;
(k) cases where three votes in a Division cannot be obtained;
(l) Division cases where the subject matter has a huge financial impact on businesses or affects the welfare of a community;
(m) subject to Section 11 (b) of this rule, other division cases that, in the opinion of at least three Members of the Division who are voting and present, are appropriate for transfer to the Court en banc;
(n) cases that the Court en banc deems of sufficient importance to merit its attention; and
(o) all matters involving policy decisions in the administrative supervision of all courts and their personnel.
.
None of the aforecited matters and cases is applicable to this case, for respondents did not show in their motion how, if at all, this case came under any of the matters and cases listed in Section 3, Rule 2 of the Internal Rules of the Supreme Court.
.

Respondents did not also demonstrate how the Third Division could have contravened the procedures for handling the appeal set in the Internal Rules of the Supreme Court. Their insistence that Justice Martires and Justice Gesmundo had not studied the case prior to the deliberations and voting held on August 16, 2017 was speculative, if not outrightly false. The truth is that the four deciding Members of the Third Division deliberated and unanimously voted on the result. The fifth Member, Justice Caguioa, was absent because he was then on leave, but his absence did not render the deliberation and voting irregular. Far to the contrary, the deliberation and voting conformed to Section 4, second paragraph, Rule 8 of the Internal Rules of the Supreme Court, which reads:

.
Section 4. x x x
xxx xxx xxx
When a Member of the Division is on leave, he/she shall no longer be replaced as long as there is a quorum of at least three (3) members, and said absent Member who participated in the deliberation of the case shall be allowed to leave his or her vote pursuant to Section 4 of Rule 12.
.

Worthy to stress is that the Court is composed of 15 Members who are assigned to the three Divisions. The assignment of the Members to the Divisions pursuant to the Internal Rules of the Supreme Court is based on seniority and on the vacancies to be filled. All the decisions promulgated and actions taken in Division cases rest upon the concurrence of at least three Members of the Division who actually take part in the deliberations and vote. The decisions or resolutions of each Division are not any less the decisions or resolutions of the Court itself. In short, the Court En Banc is not appellate in respect of the Divisions, for each Division is like the Court En Banc itself, not the inferior to the Court En Banc.

.
Lastly, respondents point to the initial dismissal of the appeal. However, such initial dismissal no longer matters considering that the Court already reconsidered it and reinstated the appeal as a consequence. As such, the decision on the merits promulgated herein was entirely valid and effective.

Tags: Sesante Villanueva Ruz Jan Edmond Marc Tim Timothy Luz Kristin tct transfer certificate of title tax declaration birth certificate relocation survey surveying judicial titling administrative titling patent title denr cenro foreshore lease ecc environmental compliance certificate design build architect cebu engineer interior design designer residential commercial cebu property warehouse for rent for lease marc Christian yncierto ruz jan Edmond yncierto ruz Kristin Villanueva ruz Edmond mabalot ruz marriage certificate timber land forest land watershed agricultural lot land use conversion hearing trial illegal drugs trial lawyer business corporate lawyer labor lawyer immigration law bureau of immigration cebu 9g visa employment visa

Alcantara Alcoy Alegria Aloguinsan Argao Asturias Badian Balamban Bantayan Barili Boljoon Borbon Carmen Catmon Compostela Consolacion Cordova Daanbantayan Dumaguete Bais Sibulan Tampi Bacong Negros Bacolod Silay Kabankalan Daan Bantayan Dalaguete Dumanjug Ginatilan Liloan Madridejos Malabuyoc Medellin Minglanilla Moalboal Oslob Pilar Pinamungajan Poro Ronda Samboan San Fernando San Francisco San Remigio Sante Fe Santander Sibonga Sogod Tabogon Tabuelan Tuburan Tudela Camotes General Luna Siargao Cagayan Davao Kidapawan Attorney Abogado Lawyer Architect Real Estate Broker Sales Agent Properties for Sale Looking for Buyers Design Build House and Lot for Sale for Rent Talisay City Mandaue City Lapu Lapu Lapu-Lapu City Yncierto

.

Detention; 1976 Case; Writ of habeas corpus; vs. Ex-General and President Fidel V. Ramos et. al.

WELLINGTON QUE REYES, petitioner, vs. GENERAL FIDEL RAMOS of the Philippine Constabulary (PC), Camp Crame, Quezon City; MAJOR ROLANDO ABADILLA of the Metrocom Police Intelligence Section (MPIS), P.C. Camp Crame, Quezon City; LT. PANFILO LACSON of the MPIS, Camp Crame, Quezon City; SGT. JAIME ORILLOSA of the MPIS, Camp Crame, Quezon City; SGT. ESTANISLAO GAMBOA of the MPIS, Camp Crame, Quezon City, respondents. [G.R. No. L-40027. January 29, 1976.]

xxx

This application for habeas corpus is premised on petitioner’s having been “confined, restrained and deprived of his liberty” in the stockade at Camp Crame, notwithstanding the absence of a formal complaint or accusation for any specific offense imputed to him, or of any judicial writ or order for his commitment.

xxx

The Supreme Court required counsel for respondent to explain why the case petitioner was not immediately referred to the civil authorities after the issuance of General Order No. 41, and also why petitioner had been detained without the supposed scheduled referral of the case to the City Fiscal’s Office. The Solicitor General manifested among others that petitioner had been granted temporary release from detention as of 1:45 p.m. of January 29, 1975 and on February 4, 1975, a permanent release.

xxx

The Supreme Court held that the release of petitioner rendered the case moot and academic. It added that the writ itself was never suspended by virtue of the proclamation of Martial Law, and that there is no bar to a petition of this character especially where on the face of the application itself it appears that there is no justification for such detention.

xxx

CONSTITUTIONAL LAW; HABEAS CORPUS; RELEASE OF DETAINED PERSON RENDERS PETITION MOOT AND ACADEMIC. — The release of a person under detention renders the petition for writ of habeas corpus moot and academic.

xxx

PROCLAMATION OF MARTIAL LAW DOES NOT SUSPEND PRIVILEGE OF HABEAS CORPUS. — Where the restraint of liberty is premised under Proclamation No. 1081 and in pursuance of its express terms, the individual, whose release is sought, falls within the class of persons as to whom the privilege of habeas corpus has been suspended. Since the writ itself, however, is never suspended, there is no bar to a petition for a writ of habeas corpus, where on the face of the application itself it appears that there is no justification for such detention. It is in that way that this writ of liberty serves a highly useful purpose. While it is to be assumed that no abuse of the broader powers under martial rule would be attempted by military officials, still, especially on the part of those in the lower echelon, and possibly due to excess of zeal, there could be detention without color of law. Should such a regrettable incident occur, certainly the courts are open for redress. Nor does the mere fact that the record of the petitioner attested to his frequent brushes with the law, preclude him from availing himself of the remedy. For “it is a fair summary of history to say that the safeguards of liberty have frequently been forged in controversies involving not very nice people.”

xxx

This application for habeas corpus filed by Wellington Que Reyes, through a sister, is premised on his having been “confined, restrained and deprived of his liberty” in the stockade or detention cell at Camp Crame, Quezon City, notwithstanding the absence of a formal complaint or accusation for any specific offense imputed to him, or of any judicial writ or order for his commitment. It was further alleged therein that he had not committed any offense for which he could be arrested or deprived of his liberty. While General Fidel Ramos, Chief of the Philippine Constabulary, was named as respondent, it was specifically made clear that as far as he was aware, such detention was ordered by respondent Major Rolando Abadilla of Camp Crame. Its last paragraph is worded thus: “That the new Constitution being in full operation and the civil court not [having] been abolished, the confinement of your petitioner under circumstances above narrated is utterly illegal, unjust and without any jurisdiction.”

.

The petition was filed on January 25, 1975. Two days later, this Court issued the following resolution: “Considering the allegations contained, the issues raised and the arguments adduced in the petition for habeas corpus, the Court Resolved: (a) to [issue] a writ of habeas corpus, returnable to this Court on Wednesday, January 29, 1975 at 10:00 a.m.; and (b) to require the respondents to file an [answer] thereto not later than January 28, 1975, and not to move to dismiss the petition.” The return was duly filed on January 28, 1975. It sought the dismissal thereof on the ground that there was a valid arrest and seizure order against petitioner: Then came the hearing on January 29, 1975 resulting in the following resolution of this Court: “When this case was called for hearing this morning, Atty. Apolo P. Gaminde, assisted by Atty. Belen E. Tuy, appeared and argued for the petitioners, while Assistant Solicitor General Santiago M. Kapunan, Col. Eustaquio Purugganan and Lt. Col. Felix R. Solomon of the Judge Advocate General’s Office, appeared and argued for the respondents. In compliance with the writ, the body of petitioner Wellington Reyes was brought before this Court. Counsel for respondents manifested that the case of the petitioner will be referred to the City Fiscal of Manila at 2:00 p.m. today. In view thereof, the Court Resolved to [require]: (a) the petitioner to [file] within five (5) days from notice a sworn manifestation stating the facts related to the alleged referral to the City Fiscal’s Office of Manila by the Judge Advocate General’s Office of the case of petitioner sometime in December 1974 and the alleged dismissal or recommendation of dismissal thereof by the Assistant City Fiscal of Manila, a copy of such sworn manifestation to be served on the Solicitor General who may file a counter-manifestation within the same period from receipt thereof; and (b) the counsel for respondent to [file] within five (5) days from notice hereof, a documented explanation of why the case of the petitioner was not immediately referred to the Civil Authorities after the issuance of General Order No. 41 and also why petitioner has been detained since January 24, 1975 without the supposed scheduled referral of the case to the City Fiscal’s Office.”

.

On the very next day, January 30, 1975, a manifestation was filed by the Solicitor General. It reads thus: “1. Petitioner had been released from detention as of 1:45 p.m. of January 29, 1975, as evidenced by a copy of the Temporary Release Order No. 75-073, dated January 28, 1975, . . .; 2. The case against petitioner for falsification of public document was referred on January 29, 1975 to the office of the City Fiscal of Quezon City (docketed as I.S. No. 75-1652) and not to the Manila Fiscal, it appearing that the falsified public document was executed in Quezon City; . . . 3. Respondents further wish to state that TSgt. Jaime Orilloso and Sgt. Estanislao Gamboa of the Metrocom Police Intelligence Service apprehended petitioner on January 24, 1975 on the strength of the Arrest, Search and Seizure Order No. 2530 signed by the Secretary of National Defense, which order as of the time of petitioner’s arrest was still subsisting and had not been recalled. Manila, January 30, 1975.” Thereafter, the compliance offering the explanation as to why the case against petitioner was not immediately referred to the civilian authorities after the issuance of General Order No. 49 and why petitioner was detained since January 24, 1975 without the scheduled referral of the case to the City Fiscal’s Office, was submitted to this Court on February 21, 1975. It was signed by Solicitor General Estelito P. Mendoza, Assistant Solicitor General Santiago M. Kapunan and Solicitor Celso P. Ylagan. It is worded thus: “1. One Mrs. Marciana Abcede filed on September 3, 1973 a complaint for Estafa against petitioner with the PC Metrocom; 2. On January 16, 1974, Mrs. Abcede’s complaint was referred to the Judge Advocate General, AFP; 3. On the basis of Mrs. Abcede’s complaint, the Secretary of National Defense issued on February 26, 1974 [arrest, search and seizure order] No. 2530 for the apprehension of petitioner, . . .; 4. However, petitioner’s immediate arrest could not be effected because he was not found in any of his known addresses, and his whereabouts were unknown; 5. As the [arrest, search and seizure order] issued on February 26, 1974 continued to be effective and unexecuted, petitioner was arrested by elements of PC Metrocom, at about 10:30 in the morning of January 24, 1975 (Friday). He was immediately brought to Camp Crame for investigation. Said investigation included not only another complaint against petitioner filed by Mrs. Abcede with the PC on November 10, 1973, this time for Falsification of Public Documents, but eighteen (18) criminal cases and/or complaints as well. The investigating team came across these other cases when they looked into petitioner’s police records with the various police agencies in the Greater Manila area; 6. Investigating elements of the PC Metrocom proceeded thereafter to all Courts and offices where these criminal cases an/or complaints are pending trial and/or disposition, including the Office of Civil Relations, GHQ, AFP, at Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo, Quezon City, where the two complaints for Estafa were filed, to follow up the disposition and/or status of all these cases; in those cases where warrants of arrest were issued against petitioner, to verify if said warrants were served or executed. It took the PC Metrocom the whole afternoon of Friday (January 24, 1975) and all of the following day, Saturday (January 25, 1975), to carry out this series of actions; 7. Verification of said eighteen (18) cases and/or complaints, disclosed the following information: (a) Criminal Case No. 131535, for Estafa, dismissed upon desistance of offended party, (b) Criminal Case No. VII-142963, for Malicious Mischief, pending — out on bail, (c) Criminal Case No. VII-149769, for Slight Physical Injuries, pending — out on bail, (d) Criminal Case No. III-150828 for Grave Coercion, pending — out on bail, (e) Criminal Case No. III-159834, for Grave Threats, pending — out on bail, (f) I.S. No. 72-1767, for Estafa, pending, (g) Estafa, filed with MMP — no disposition on file (July 18, 1969), (h) Estafa, filed with MMP — no disposition on file (November 25, 1970), (i) Illegal Possession of Firearms and Ammunitions, filed with MMP — no disposition on file (November 25, 1970), (j) Violation of Ordinance 2646 (Jaywalking) — no disposition on file (January 20, 1972, (k) Estafa thru Falsification of Commercial Documents, before Br. VI, CFI, Manila, dismissed, upon desistance of offended party, (1) Estafa, before Br. VIII, City Court, Manila, dismissed, upon desistance of offended party, (m) Estafa, before Br. VIII, City Court, Manila, pending, (n) Estafa complaint, filed with OCR, GHQ, AFP (1973) — no disposition on file (o) Estafa, complaint, filed with OCR, GHQ, AFP — no disposition on file, (p) Attempted Parricide, filed with MMP & Metrocom — closed due to complainant’s desistance, (q) Criminal Case No. 7143987, for Incriminatory Machination — case withdrawn, (r) Criminal Case No. 7143986, for Attempted Corruption of Public Official — case withdrawn by Reviewing Fiscal on November 15, 1971; 8. On January 27, 1975 (Monday), even before respondents could effect the actual transfer of petitioner’s case to the proper City Fiscal’s Office (considering limitations of time, facilities for investigation, etc.), this Honorable Court resolved to issue the Writ (habeas corpus) returnable to itself on Wednesday, January 29, 1975, at 10:00 a.m.; and to require respondents to file Answer not later than January 28, 1975; 9. From January 27 to January 29, 1975, respondents took no action on these cases and complaints, including Mrs. Abcede’s complaint for Falsification of Public Documents, by way of referring or indorsing them to the prosecuting agencies, the proceedings having become sub judice, respondents [being] of the impression that the matter should be left to the disposition of this Honorable Court; 10. On January 29, 1975, at about 2:00 in the afternoon, after the hearing in the morning of herein Petition before this Tribunal, respondents forwarded Mrs. Abcede’s complaint for Falsification of Public Documents to the Office of the City Fiscal of Quezon City (I.S. No. 75-1652); . . . 11. On the same date (January 29, 1975), at exactly 1:45 o’clock in the afternoon, petitioner was granted temporary release [and] . . . on February 4, 1975, petitioner was granted permanent release. . . .”

xxx