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Llorente Jr. v Sandiganbayan v People 2000 | Pardo, J.

2 criminal cases were filed against petitioner for violation of Section 3 of RA 3019. 1st is for seizing 930 sawn knockdown wooden boxes without search and seizure warrant and without issuing any receipt of seizure causing damage to one Diamante; 2nd is for refusing to issue mayors permit to ice plant and resawmill/box factory of Diamantes without sufficient justification; They were filed before he became a Congressman in May 8, 1995 when he was still a municipal mayor; He pleaded not guilty to both; Note that trial in Sandiganbayan has not yet begun; Later, in May 16, 1995, Congress enacted RA 7975, amending Section 4 of PD 1606 which defined jurisdiction of Sandiganbayan; Under section 4 (jurisdiction) municipal mayors were not mentioned; At the bottom it says, where none of principal accused are occupying position corresponding to Salary Grade 27 or higher, exclusive jurisdiction is with RTC or MTCs as the case may be. Llorente filed an motion to dismiss or refer to the RTC in 1st case; As to the 2nd case, he motioned for it to be referred to the RTC; Both motion denied so to SC. W/N RA 7975 divested Sandiganbayan of its jurisdiction over violations of RA 3019 against municipal mayors. No. Sandiganbayan has jurisdiction over violations of RA 3019 against municipal mayors Petitioner says: the salary received by a public official determines his Salary Grade; SC says: on the contrary, it is the officials grade that determines his or her salary; To determine whether the official is within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan, reference should be made to RA 6758 and and the Index of Occupational Services, Position Titles and Salary Grades; An officials Salary Grade is not a matter of proof but of law which the Court must take judicial notice; Also, under Section 444(d) of the LGC, the municipal mayor shall receive a minimum monthly compensation corresponding to Salary Grade twenty-seven (27) as prescribed under Republic Act No. 6758 and the implementing guidelines issued pursuant thereto. Additionally, both the 1989 and 1997 versions of the Index of Occupational Services, Position Titles

and Salary Grades list the municipal mayor under Salary Grade 27. DENIED.