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G.R. No. 146943, October 4, 2002
FACTS: On July 31, 1998, Sario Malinias and Roy S. Pilando, who were candidates for governor and
congress representative positions, respectively, filed a complaint with the COMELEC's Law Department
against Victor Dominguez, Anacleto Tangilag and others for their violation of the
following laws:1. Section 25 of R.A. No. 6646; and2. Sections 232 and 261 (i) of B.P. Blg. 881.Dominguez
was then the incumbent Congressman of Poblacion, Sabangan, Mountain Province. Corpuz was then the
Provincial Director of the Philippine National Police in Mountain Province while Tangilag was then the
Chief of Police of the Municipality of Bontoc, Mountain Province. The petitioners said that due to said
violations, their supporters were deprived from participating in the canvassing of election returns as
they were blocked by a police checkpoint in the course of their way to the canvassing site at the
Provincial Capitol Building in Bontoc, Mountain
Province. Among the private respondents, only Corpuz and Tangilagsubmitted their joint Counter-
Affidavit, wherein they admitted that they ordered the establishment of checkpoints all over the
province to enforce the COMELEC Gun Ban and its other pertinent rules pursuant to COMELEC Res. No.
2968 purposive of the maintenance of peace and order around the vicinity of the canvassing site. Also,
they said that the presence of the policemen within the said area is to prevent some groups who were
reportedly had theintention to disrupt the canvass proceedings. They claimed that such a response was
not unwarranted as this has alreadyhappened in the past, wherein, in fact, the petitioners were among
After investigating the allegations, COMELEC ruled to dismiss the petition against the respondents for
insufficiency of evidence to establish probable cause. Malinias filed an MR but it was also denied for
failure of adducing additional evidence thereon. Not satisfied with the same, Malinias filed to SC a
petition for reviewon certiorari on this case.

ISSUE: Did COMELEC abuse its discretion in dismissing the complaint for lack of probable cause?

RATIO DECIDENDI OF SC:No. SC AFFIRMED the decision of COMELEC and found theconduct of its
investigation and ruling on the case to be in accordwith its jurisdiction and duties under the law. In this
case,COMELEC did not commit any grave abuse of discretion as there isnothing capricious or despotic in
the manner of their resolution of the said complaint, hence, SC cannot issue the extraordinary writ
of certiorari