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BALEROS, JR. vs.

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES


G.R. NO. 138033 January 30, 2007

FACTS:
At about 1:50 in the morning or sometime thereafter of 13 December 1991 in Manila, the accused, by forcefully covering the face of Martina
Lourdes T. Albano with a piece of cloth soaked in chemical with dizzying effects, tried to rape the victim by lying on top of her with the
intention to have carnal knowledge with her but was unable to perform all the acts of execution by reason of some cause or accident other
than his own spontaneous desistance, said acts being committed against her will and consent to her damage and prejudice. Renato Baleros,
Jr. moved for a partial reconsideration of a SC decision acquitting him of the crime of attempted rape but adjudging him guilty of light
coercion. It is Baleros' submission that his conviction for light coercion under an Information for attempted rape, runs counter to the en
banc ruling in People v. Contreras where the Court held: The SOLGEN contends that Contreras should be held liable for unjust vexation under
Art. 287(2) of the RPC. However, the elements of unjust vexation do not form part of the crime of rape as defined in Art. 335. Moreover,
the circumstances stated in the information do not constitute the elements of the said crime. Contreras, therefore, cannot be convicted of
unjust vexation.
ISSUE:
Whether Renato Baleros, Jr. is guilty of unjust vexation.
HELD:
Yes. He argues that the Information against him does not allege that the act of covering the face of the victim with a piece of cloth soaked
in chemical caused her annoyance, irritation, torment, distress and disturbance. The SC wish to stress that malice, compulsion or restraint
need not be alleged in an Information for unjust vexation. Unjust vexation exists even without the element of restraint or compulsion for the
reason that the term is broad enough to include any human conduct which, although not productive of some physical or material harm,
would unjustly annoy or irritate an innocent person. The paramount question in a prosecution for unjust vexation is whether the offender's
act causes annoyance, irritation, torment, distress, or disturbance to the mind of the person to whom it is directed . That the victim, after
the incident cried while relating to her classmates what she perceived to be a sexual attack and the fact that she filed a case for attempted
rape proved beyond cavil that she was disturbed, if not distressed, by the acts of the Baleros.

PEOPLE VS. ASTORGA


G.R. No. 110097; December 22, 1997
FACTS:
Appellant Arnulfo Astorga appealed the courts decision on Criminal Case No. 8243 wherein appellant was charged with violatio n of
Article 267, paragraph 4 of the Revised Penal Code or the kidnap and detention of a minor.
Astorga insisted that the inconsistencies and the contradictions of the prosecutions witnesses should be deemed incredible and that the
delay in the filing of the accusation weakened the case. Furthermore, Astorga claimed that he had no motive to kidnap the 8-year-old
Yvonne Traya which shouldve been apparent and proven upon conviction. Ultimately, Astorga claimed that the court erred in co nvicting
him despite the fact that he had not detained nor locked Yvonne up which is an important element in kidnapping.

ISSUES:
1.)

Whether or not the prosecutions witnesses were credible.

2.)

Whether or not the lack of motive by the appellant is significant in the courts decision.

3.)

Whether or not it was kidnapping or coercion.

RULING:
1.) The delay in the making of the criminal accusation does not necessarily weaken the credibility of the witnesses especially if it
had been satisfactorily explained. In the case, one week was reasonable since the victim was a resident in Binaungan and that the
case was filed in Tagum, Davao.
2.) The court found it irrelevant to identify the motive since motive is not an element of the crime. Motive is totally irrelevan t
when ample direct evidence sustains the culpability of the accused beyond reasonable doubt. Besides, the appellant himself admitted
having taken Yvonne to Maco Central Elementary School.
3.) The court agreed with the appellants contention. The evidence does not show that appellant wanted to detain Yvonne; much
less, that he actually detained her. Appellants forcible dragging of Yvonne to a place only he knew cannot be said to be an actual
confinement or restriction on the person of Yvonne. There was no lock up. Accordingly, appellant cannot be convicted of kidnapping
under Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code. Rather, the felony committed was grave coercion under Article 286 of the same code.

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