FRANCISCO YAP, JR., a.k.a. EDWIN YAP, petitioner, vs. COURT OF APPEALS and the PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, respondents.
[G.R. No. 141529. June 6, 2001]
The right against excessive bail, and the liberty of abode and travel, are being invoked to set aside two resolutions of the Court of Appeals which fixed bail at P5,500,000.00 and imposed conditions on change of residence and travel abroad.
For misappropriating amounts equivalent to P5,500,000.00, petitioner was convicted of estafa by the Regional Trial Court of Pasig City and was sentenced to four years and two months of prision correccional, as minimum, to eight years of prision mayor as maximum, “in addition to one (1) year for each additional P10,000.00 in excess of P22,000.00 but in no case shall it exceed twenty (20) years.” He filed a notice of appeal, and moved to be allowed provisional liberty under the cash bond he had filed earlier in the proceedings. The motion was denied by the trial court in an order dated February 17, 1999.
A motion for reconsideration was filed, seeking the reduction of the amount of bail fixed by respondent court, but was denied in a resolution issued on November 25, 1999.
Petitioner contends that the Court of Appeals, by setting bail at a prohibitory amount, effectively denied him his right to bail. He challenges the legal basis of respondent court for fixing bail at P5,500,000.00, which is equivalent to the amount of his civil liability to private complainant Manila Mahogany Marketing Corporation, and argues that the Rules of Court never intended for the civil liability of the accused to be a guideline or basis for determining the amount of bail. He prays that bail be reduced to at least P40,000.00, citing the maximum amount of bail that can be posted for the crime of estafa under the 1996 Bail Bond Guide, or P20,000.00, equivalent to the amount of bail he posted during the trial of the case.
ISSUE: Whether or not the condition imposed by the CA on accused’s bail bond violative the liberty of abode and right to travel?
No. Petitioner is seeking bail on appeal. He was in fact declared guilty beyond reasonable doubt by the RTC, and due to the serious amount of fraud involved, sentenced to imprisonment for twenty years --- the maximum penalty for estafa by false pretenses or fraudulent acts allowed by the Revised Penal Code. Although it cannot be controverted that the Court of Appeals, despite the foregoing considerations and the possibility of flight still wielded its discretion to grant petitioner bail, the setting of bail in the amount of P5,500,000.00 is unjustified as having no legal nor factual basis. Guided by the penalty imposed by the lower court and the weight of the evidence against petitioner, we believe that the amount of P200,000.00 is more reasonable.
The right to change abode and travel within the Philippines, being invoked by petitioner, are not absolute rights.
The condition imposed by the Court of Appeals is simply consistent with the nature and function of a bail bond, which is to ensure that petitioner will make himself available at all times whenever the Court requires his presence. Besides, a closer look at the questioned condition will show that petitioner is not prevented from changing abode; he is merely required to inform the court in case he does so.
[G.R. No. 16480. December 11, 1920. ]
THE UNITED STATES, Plaintiff-Appellee,
AGAPITO BELTRAN and PEDRO DE LEON,Defendants. AGAPITO BELTRAN, Appellant.
On May 10, 1919, Agapito Beltran borrowed from Facundo Ilaw, the owner of a chineleria, the sum of P74.50. At the same time, Beltran signed a receipt of the following tenor:
"I borrowed from Mr. Facundo Ilaw the sum of seventy-four pesos and fifty centavos (P74.50), by virtue of our agreement that I shall work while I have not paid, and that I shall pay every week by installment.”
Beltran worked continuously in Ilaw’s shop from March 17, 1919, until August 3p, 1919. During this period Beltran claims that he paid Ilaw P24 on account of his debt. Beltran left the employ of Ilaw because of a disagreement with the wife of his employer and because there was not enough work and material to keep him busy.
For failure to fulfill his agreement, Agapito Beltran was prosecuted, first in the municipal court of the city of Manila, and later, on appeal, in the Court of First Instance of the city of Manila, for a violation of section 1 of Act No. 2098, an Act relating to contracts of personal services and advances thereunder, and providing punishment for certain offenses connected therewith. He was found guilty and was sentenced by the latter court to two months’ imprisonment, to pay Facundo Ilaw the sum of P83.65, and to pay one-half of the costs.
Beltran appealed to the Supreme Court.
Whether or not Beltran violated Act No. 2098, an Act relating to contracts of personal services and advances?
No, there was no violation on the side of Beltran.
"The ingredients of this statutory offense are: (1) A contract in writing by the accused for the performance of any act or service; (2) an intent of the part of the accused, when he entered into the contract, to injure or defraud his employer; (3) the obtaining by the accused of money or other personal property from such employer by means of such contract entered into with such intent; and (4) the refusal by the accused, with like intent, and without just cause, and without refunding such money, or paying for such property, to perform such act or service. This statute by no means provides that a person who has entered into a written contract for the performance of services, under which he has obtained money or other personal property, is punishable as if he had stolen such money or other personal property, upon his refusal to perform the contract, without refunding the money or paying for the property. A mere breach of a contract is not by the statute made a crime. The criminal feature of the transaction is wanting unless the accused entered into the contract with intent to injure or defraud his employer, and unless his refusal to perform was with like intent and without just cause. That there was an intent to injure or defraud the employer, both when the contract was entered into and when the accused refused performance, are facts which must be shown by the evidence. As the intent is the design, purpose, resolve, or determination in the mind of the accused, it can rarely be proved by direct evidence, but must be ascertained by means of inferences from the facts and circumstances developed by the proof. (Carlisle v. State, 76 Ala., 75; Mack v. State, 63 Ala., 138.) In the absence, however, of evidence from which such inferences may be drawn, the jury are not justified in indulging in mere unsupported conjectures, speculations, or suspicions as to intentions which were not disclosed by any visible or tangible act, expression, or circumstance. (Green v. State, 68 Ala., 539.)"
Applying the foregoing principles to the facts, we find nothing to show that when the defendant borrowed from the complainant the amount of money mentioned in the receipt, he had made up his mind not to pay his debt, or to injure his employer. If anything, the fact that the accused worked for the complainant continuously for three or four months after the debt was incurred, would indicate good faith on the part of the accused at the time the agreement was signed. In addition to this the testimony of the accused with regard to the reason which compelled him to seek work in another place, appears to be more convincing than that of the complainant on the same point.
Judgment is reversed, and the defendant is acquitted with all costs de officio. So ordered.
IDCPI (Islamic Da’wa Council)
G.R. No. 153888 July 9, 2003
The office of the Executive Secretary issued EO 46 creating the Philippine Halal Certification Scheme and designating respondent OMA to oversee its implementation. Under the EO, respondent OMA has the exclusive authority to issue halal certificates and perform other related regulatory activities. Petitioner, lost revenues after food manufacturers stopped securing certifications from it, filed a complaint praying to nullify the EO 46 and further implementation of it. The complaint contends that the EO 46 violate the constitutional provision on the separation of Church and State. The function of exclusive issuance of halal certificates is only for religious organization – a food becomes halal only after the performance of Islamic religious ritual and prayer.
Whether or not EO 46 is unconstitutional thus, null and void.
Classifying a food product as halal is a religious function because the standards used are drawn from the Qur'an and Islamic beliefs. Office of Muslim Affairs (OMA) deals with the societal, legal, political and economic concerns of the Muslim community as a "national cultural community" and not as a religious group. By giving OMA the exclusive power to classify food products as halal, EO 46 encroached on the religious freedom of Muslim organizations thus trangessing the preferred status of the freedom of religion. Interpretation of what food products are fit for Muslim consumption is vested exclusively on the conscience and belieft of one person whether muslim or non-muslim. The protection and promotion of the muslim Filipinos' right to health are already provided for in existing laws and ministered to by government agencies charged with ensuring that food products released in the market are fit for human consumption, properly labeled and safe. Unlike EO 46, these laws do not encroach on the religious freedom of muslims. Therefore the EO 46 is null and void.
G.R. No. L-63345 January 30, 1986
EFREN C. MONCUPA, petitioner,
JUAN PONCE ENRILE, FABIAN C. VER, GALILEO KINTANAR, FERNANDO GOROSPE, AND JOSE CASTRO, respondents.
Petitioners were arrested and detained on the allegation that they were members of a subversive organization. Petitioners filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus.
Respondents filed a motion to dismiss after the petitioner was temporarily released from detention on the ground that the petition for habeas corpus may be deemed moot and academic since the petitioner is free and no longer under the respondent’s custody.
Petitioner argues that his temporary release did not render the instant petition moot and academic because of the restrictions imposed by the respondents which constitute an involuntary and illegal restraint on his freedom.
Whether or not a petition for a writ of habeas corpus becomes moot and academic in view of the detained person’s release with restrictions.
No. Restraints attached to temporary release of a detained person warrant the Supreme Court’s inquiry into the nature of the involuntary restraint and relieving him of such restraints as may be illegal.
Reservation of the military in the form of restrictions attached to the detainee’s temporary release constitutes restraints on the liberty of the detainee. It is not physical restraint alone which is inquired into by the writ of habeas corpus.
Temporary release of detainee from detention with involuntary restraints does not render the petition for writ of habeas corpus moot and academic. It is available where a person continue to be unlawfully denied of one or more of his constitutional freedoms, where there is denial of due process, where the restraints are not merely involuntary but are necessary, and where a deprivation of freedom originally valid has later become arbitrary.