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The complainant, Julieta Borromeo Samonte charged Rolando R.

Gatdula with grave misconduct consisting in the alleged engaging
in the private practice of law which is in conflict with his official
functions as Branch Clerk of Court.
The complainant represents her sister as plaintiff in a civil case for
Contrary to their expectation that execution will proceed, they
instead received a temporary restraining order.
Santos contends that the order was hasty and irregular as she was
never notified of the application for preliminary injunction.
Gatdula, when asked by the complainant of the reason of the
decision, blamed Santos lawyer for writing the address in the
complaint for ejectment and told her that if she wanted the
execution to proceed, she should change her lawyer and retain the
law office of respondent, at the same time giving his calling card
with the name Baligod, Gatdula, Tacardon, Dimailig and Celera.
The decision of the Court continued not to be favorable to
Samonte, which cause her to file administrative complaint against

ISSUE: WON Gatdula is guilty of infraction

HELD: Yes.

The inclusion/retention of his name in the professional card

constitutes an act of solicitation which violates Section 7, subpar.
(b)(2) of RA 6713 (Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for
Public Officials and Employees) which declares it unlawful for
a public official or employees to, among others:
(2) Engage in the private practice of their profession unless
authorized by the Constituion or law, provided that such practice
will not conflict with official functions.
Respondent is reprimanded for engaging in the private practice of
law. He is further ordered to cause the exclusion of his name in the
firm name of any office engaged in the private practice of law.

Whether or not Atty. Renomeron, as a lawyer, may also be disciplined by
the Court for his malfeasance as a public official. YES
Whether or not the Code of Professional Responsibility applies to
government service in the discharge of official tasks. YES

This is in relation to the administrative case filed by Atty.

Collantes, counsel for V& G Better Homes Subdivision, Inc. (V&G),
against Atty. Renomeron, for the latters irregular actuations with
regard to the application of V&G for registration of 163 pro forma
Deed of Absolute Sale with Assignment (in favor of GSIS) of lots in
its subdivision.

A lawyers misconduct as a public official also constitutes a

violation of his oath as a lawyer.
The lawyers oath imposes upon every lawyer the duty to delay no
man for money or malice.
The lawyers oath is a source of obligations and its violation is a
ground for his suspension, disbarment or other disciplinary action.



Although V&G complied with the desired requirements, Renomeron

suspended the registration of the documents with certain special
conditions between them, which was that V&G should provide
him with weekly round trip ticket from Tacloban to Manila plus
P2,000.00 as pocket money per trip, or, in lieu thereof, the sale of
respondents Quezon City house and lot by V&G or GSIS
Eventually, Renomeron formally denied the registration of the
He himself elevated the question on the registrability of the said
documents to Administrator Bonifacio (of the National Land Titles
and Deeds Registration Administration-NLTDRA). The Administrator
then resolved in favor of the registrability of the documents.
Despite the resolution of the Administrator, Renomeron still
refused the registration thereof but demanded from the parties
interested the submission of additional requirements not adverted
in his previous denial.

The Code of Professional Responsibility applies to government

service in the discharge of their official tasks (Canon 6).
The Code forbids a lawyer to engage in unlawful, dishonest,
immoral or deceitful conduct (Rule 1.01, Code of Professional
Responsibility), or delay any mans cause for any corrupt motive
or interest (Rule 1.03).
WHEREFORE. Attorney Vicente C. Renomeron is disbarred from the
practice of law in the Philippines, and his name is stricken off the
Roll of Attorneys.


Disbarment or Suspension against Atty. Jose R.Imbang for multiple

violations of the Code of Professional Responsibility.
1992, Ramos sought the assistance of Atty. Imbang in filing civil
and criminal actions against the spouses Roque and Elenita
She gave Imbang P8,500 as attorney's fees but the latter issued a
receipt for P5,000 only.
Ramos tried to attend the scheduled hearings of her cases against
the Jovellanoses.
Imbang never allowed her to enter the courtroom and always told
her to wait outside.
He would then come out after severa lhours to inform her that the
hearing had been cancelled and rescheduled.
This happened six times and for each appearance in
court,respondent charged her P350.
Ramos was shocked to learn that Imbang never filed any case
against the Jovellanoses and that he was in fact employed in the
Public Attorney's Office (PAO).


Ramos knew that he was in the government service from the very
start. Infact, he first met the complainant when he was still a
district attorney in the Citizen's Legal Assistance Office
(predecessor of PAO) of Bian, Laguna and was assigned as
counsel for Ramos' daughter.
In 1992, Ramos requested him to help her file an action for
damages against the Jovellanoses. Because he was with the PAO
and aware thatRamos was not an indigent, he declined. (*Alibi)
Nevertheless, he advised Ramos to consult Atty. Tim Ungson, a
relative who was a private practitioner. Atty. Ungson, however, did
not accept the case as she was unable to come up with the
acceptance fee agreed upon.
Notwithstanding Atty. Ungson's refusal, Ramos allegedly remained
adamant. She insisted on suing the Jovellanoses. Afraid that she
mightspend the cash on hand,
Ramos asked Imbang to keep the P5,000 whileshe raised the
balance of Atty. Ungson's acceptance fee.
On April 15, 1994, Imbang resigned from the PAO.
A few months later in September 1994, Ramos again asked
Imbang to assist her in suing the Jovellanoses. Inasmuch as he was
now a private practitioner, Imbang agreed to prepare the
complaint. However, he was unable to finalize it as he lost contact
with Ramos.

IBP findings (CBD):

The CBD concluded that respondent violated the following

provisions of the Code of Professional Responsibility:
Rule 1.01. A lawyer shall not engage in unlawful, dishonest,
immoral or deceitful conduct.
Rule 16.01. A lawyer shall account for all money or property
collected or received for or from a client.
Rule 18.01. A lawyer should not undertake a legal service which he
knows or should know that he is not qualified to render. However,
he may render such service if, with the consent of his client, he
can obtain as collaborating counsel a lawyer who is competent on
the matter.

CBD Recommendations:
Suspension from the practice of law for threeyears and ordered him to
immediately return to the complainant theamount of P5,000 which was
substantiated by the receipt.
Board of Governors:
adopted and approved the findings of the CBD,however, modified the CBD's
recommendation with regard to therestitution ofP5,000 by imposing
interest at the legal rate, reckoned from1995 or, in case of Imbangs failure
to return the total amount, anadditional suspension of six months.
ISSUE: Whether or not Atty. Imbang should be disbarred.

Lawyers are expected to conduct themselves with honesty and

integrity. More specifically, lawyers in government service are
expected to be more conscientious of their actuations as they are
subject to public scrutiny.
They are not only members of the bar but also public servants
who owe utmost fidelity to public service.
The SC supported this with three explanations:

1. Code of Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees

Section 7(b)(2) of the Code of Ethical Standards for Public Officials

and Employees provides:
Section 7. Prohibited Acts and Transactions. -- In addition to acts
and omissions of public officials and employees now prescribed in
the Constitution and existing laws, the following constitute
prohibited acts and transactions of any public official and
employee and are hereby declared unlawful:
(b) Outside employment and other activities related thereto, public
officials and employees during their incumbency shall not:
Engage in the private practice of profession unless authorized by
the Constitution or law, provided that such practice will not conflict
with their official function.
In this instance, Imbang received P5,000 from the complainant
and issued a receipt on July 15, 1992 while he was still connected

with the PAO. Acceptance of money from a client establishes an

attorney-client relationship.
2. Revised Administrative Code

Section 14(3), Chapter 5, Title III, Book V of the Revised

Administrative Code provides:
The PAO shall be the principal law office of the Government in
extending free legal assistance to indigent persons in criminal,
civil, labor, administrative and other quasi-judicial cases.
As a PAO lawyer, Imbang should not have accepted attorney's fees
from the complainant as this was inconsistent with the office's

3. Code of Professional Responsibility

Canon 1 of the Code of Professional Responsibility provides:

Every lawyer is obligated to uphold the law. This undertaking
includes the observance of the above-mentioned prohibitions
blatantly violated by Imbang when he accepted the complainant's
cases and received attorney's fees inconsideration of his legal
Consequently, Imbang's acceptance of the cases was also a
breach of Rule18.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibility
because the prohibition on the private practice of profession
disqualified him from acting as Ramos' counsel.
WHEREFORE, Atty. Jose R. Imbang is found guilty of violating the
lawyers oath, Canon 1, Rule 1.01 and Canon 18, Rule 18.01 of the
Code of Professional Responsibility. Accordingly, he is
hereby DISBARRED from the practice of law and his name
is ORDERED STRICKEN from the Roll of Attorneys. He is also
ordered to return to complainant the amount of P5,000 with
interest at the legal rate, reckoned from 1995, within 10 days from
receipt of this resolution.


It appears that this disbarment proceeding is an off-shoot of the

administrative case earlier filed by complainant against
In said case, which was initially investigated by the Land
Registration Authority (LRA), complainant charged respondent with
illegal exaction; indiscriminate issuance of Transfer Certificate of
Title (TCT) No. T-2821 in the names of Lawan Bauduli Datu, Mona

Abdullah, Ambobae Bauduli Datu, Matabae BauduliDatu,

Mooamadali Bauduli Datu, and Amenola Bauduli Datu; and
manipulating the criminal complaint filed against Hadji Serad
Bauduli Datu and others for violation of the Anti-Squatting Law.
It appears from the records that the Baudali Datus are relatives of

Issue: WON atty. Bubong violate Canon 6 of the Code of Professional

Held: YES

In the case at bar, respondents grave misconduct, as established

by the Office of the President and subsequently affirmed by this
Court, deals with his qualification as a lawyer.
By taking advantage of his office as the Register of Deeds of
Marawi City and employing his knowledge of the rules governing
land registration for the benefit of his relatives,respondent had
clearly demonstrated his unfitness not only to perform the
functions of a civil servant but also to retain his membership in the
bar. Rule 6.02 of the Code of Professional Responsibility is explicit
on this matter.
It reads :Rule 6.02 A lawyer in the government service shall not
use his public position to promote or advance his private interests,
nor allow the latter to interfere with his public duties.
Respondents conduct manifestly undermined the peoples
confidence in the public office he used to occupy and cast doubt
on the integrity of the legal profession. The ill-conceived use of his
knowledge of the intricacies of the law calls for nothing less than
the withdrawal of his privilege to practice law.
As for the letter sent by Bainar Ali, the deceased complainants
daughter, requesting forthe withdrawal of this case, we cannot
possibly favorably act on the same as proceedings of this nature
cannot be interrupted or terminated by reason of desistance,
settlement, M\compromise, restitution, withdrawal of the charges
or failure of the complainant to prosecute the same. As we have
previously explained in the case of
Irene Rayos-Ombac v. Atty. Orlando A. Rayos
A case of suspension or disbarment may proceed regardless of
interest or lack of interest of the complainant. What matters is
whether, on the basis of the facts borne out by the record, the
charge of deceit and grossly immoral conduct has been duly
This rule is premised on the nature of disciplinary proceedings. A
proceeding for suspension or disbarment is not in any sense a civil
action where the complainant is a plaintiff and the respondent
lawyer is a defendant. Disciplinary proceedings involve no private
interest and afford no redress for private grievance. They are
undertaken and prosecuted solely for the public welfare.

They are undertaken for the purpose of preserving courts of justice

from the official ministration of persons unfit to practice in them.
The attorney is called to answer to the court for his conduct as an
officer of the court. The complainant or the person who called the
attention of the court to the attorneys alleged misconduct is in no
sense a party and has generally no interest in the outcome except
as all good citizens may have in the proper administrative of

WHEREFORE, respondent Atty. Mosib A. Bubong is hereby

DISBARRED and his name is ORDERED STRICKEN from the Roll of
Attorneys. Let a copy of this Decision be entered in the
respondents record as a member of the Bar, and notice of the
same be served on the Integrated Bar of the Philippines, and on
the Office of the Court Administrator for circulation to all courts in
the country.
The complainant filed a sales application covering a parcel of land in
The land was previously part of Fort Andres Bonifacio that was segregated
and declared open for disposition.
The First Charge: Violation of Rule 6.02

The complainant claimed that the respondent abused his position

as Congressman and as a member of the Committee on Awards
when he exerted undue pressure and influence over the
complainants father, Miguel P. Olazo, for the latter to contest the
complainants sales application and claim the subject land for

The complainant further claimed that the respondent brokered the

transfer of rights of the subject land between Miguel Olazo and
Joseph Jeffrey Rodriguez, who is the nephew of the respondents
deceased wife.

As a result of the respondents abuse of his official functions, the

complainants sales application was denied.

The conveyance o frights to Joseph Jeffrey Rodriguez and his sales

application were subsequently given due course by the
Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
The Second Charge: Violation of Rule 6.03

The second charge involves another parcel of land within the

proclaimed areas belonging to Manuel Olazo, the complainants

The complainant alleged that the respondent persuaded Miguel

Olazo to direct Manuel toconvey his rights over the land to Joseph
Jeffrey Rodriguez.

In addition, the complainant alleged that in May 1999, the

respondent met with Manuel for the purpose of nullifying the
conveyance of rights over the land to Joseph Jeffrey Rodriguez.

The complainant claimed that the respondent wanted the rights

over the land transferred to one Rolando Olazo, the Barangay
Chairman of Hagonoy, Taguig.

The respondent in this regard executed an "Assurance" where he

stated that he was the lawyer of Ramon Lee and Joseph Jeffrey
The Third Charge: Violation of Rule 1.01

The complainant alleged that the respondent engaged in unlawful

conduct considering his knowledge that Joseph Jeffrey Rodriguez
was not a qualified beneficiary .

The complainant averred that Joseph Jeffrey Rodriguez is not a

bona fide resident of the proclaimed areas and does not qualify for
an award.
ISSUE: whether the respondents actions constitute a breach of the
standard ethical conduct first, while the respondent was still an elective
public official and a member of the Committee on Awards; and second,
when he was no longer a public official, but a private lawyer who
represented a client before the office he was previously connected with.

Generally, a lawyer who holds a government office may not be

disciplined as a member of the Bar for misconduct in the discharge
of his duties as a government official.

He maybe disciplined by this Court as a member of the Bar only

when his misconduct also constitutes a violation of his oath as a
Accountability of a government lawyer in public office

Canon 6 of the Code of Professional Responsibility highlights the

continuing standard of ethical conduct to be observed by
government lawyers in the discharge of their official tasks.

In addition to the standard of conduct laid down under R.A. No.

6713 for government employees, a lawyer in the government
service is obliged to observe the standard of conduct under the
Code of Professional Responsibility.

Since public office is a public trust, the ethical conduct demanded

upon lawyers in the government service is more exacting than the
standards for those in private practice. Lawyers in the government
service are subject to constant public scrutiny under norms of
public accountability.

They also bear the heavy burden of having to put aside their
private interest in favor of the interest of the public; their private

activities should not interfere with the discharge of their official


we find the absence of any concrete proof that the

respondent abused hisposition as a Congressman and as a
member of the Committee on Awards in the manner
defined under Rule 6.02 o fthe Code of Professional

First, the records do not clearly show If the complainants sales

application was ever brought before the Committee on Awards.

The circumstances do not show that the respondent did in any way
promote, advance or use his private interests in the discharge of
his official duties.

To repeat, since the sales application was not brought before the
Committee on Awards when the respondent was still a member, no
sufficient basis exists to conclude that he used his position to
obtain personal benefits. We note in this regard that the denial of
the complainants sales application over the subject land was
made by the DENR, not by the Committee on Awards.

Second, the complainants allegation that the respondent

"orchestrated" the efforts to get the subject land does not specify
how the orchestration was undertaken.
Private practice of law after separation from public office

As proof that the respondent was engaged in an unauthorized

practice o flaw after his separation from the government service,
the complainant presented the Sinumpaang Salaysay,dated
January 20, 2000, of Manuel and the document entitled
"Assurance" where the respondent legally represented Ramon Lee
and Joseph Jeffrey Rodriguez.

Nevertheless, the foregoing pieces of evidence fail to persuade us

to conclude that there was a violation of Rule 6.03 of the Code of
Professional Responsibility.

Under the circumstances, the foregoing definition should be

correlated with R.A.No. 6713 and Rule 6.03 of the Code of
Professional Responsibility which impose certain restrictions on
government lawyers to engage in private practice after their
separation from the service.

Section 7(b)(2) of R.A. No. 6713 reads:

Section 7. Prohibited Acts and Transactions.
In addition to acts and omissions of public officials and employees
now prescribed in the Constitution and existing laws, the following
shall constitute prohibited acts and transactions of any public
official and employee and are hereby declared to be unlawful:x x x
Outside employment and other activities related thereto

Public officials and employees during their incumbency shall not:x

x x x(2) Engage in the private practice of their profession unless
authorized by the Constitution or law, provided, that such practice
will not conflict or tend to conflict withtheir official functions; x x x
These prohibitions shall continue to apply for a period of one (1)
year after resignation, retirement, or separation from public office,
except in the case of subparagraph (b) (2) above, but the
professional concerned cannot practice his profession in
connection with any matter before the office he used to be with, in
which case the one-year prohibition shall likewise apply.
As a rule, government lawyers are not allowed to engage in the
private practice of their profession during their incumbency.
By way of exception, a government lawyer can engage in the
practice of his or her profession under the following conditions:
first , the private practice is authorized by the Constitution or by
the law; and
second ,the practice will not conflict or tend to conflict with his or
her official functions.
The last paragraph of Section 7provides an exception to the
In case of lawyers separated from the government service who are
covered under subparagraph (b) (2) of Section 7of R.A. No. 6713, a
one-year prohibition is imposed to practice law in connection with
any matter before the office he used to be with.
Rule 6.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility echoes this
restriction and prohibits lawyers, after leaving the government
service, to accept engagement or employment in connection with
any matter in which he had intervened while in the said service.
The keyword in Rule 6.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility
is the term" intervene" which we previously interpreted to include
an act of a person who has the power to influence the
Otherwise stated, to fall within the ambit of Rule 6.03 of the Code
of Professional Responsibility, the respondent must have accepted
engagement or employment in a matter which, by virtue of his
public office, he had previously exercised power to influence the
outcome of the proceedings.
As the records show, no evidence exists showing that the
respondent previously interfered with the sales application
covering Manuels land when the former was still a member of the
Committee on Awards.
In any event, even granting that respondents act fell within the
definition of practice of law, the available pieces of evidence are
insufficient to show that the legal representation was made before

the Committee on Awards, or that the Assurance was intended to

be presented before it. These are matters for the complainant to
prove and we cannot consider any uncertainty in this regard
against the respondents favor.
Violation of Rule 1.01

Rule 1.01 prohibits a lawyer from engaging in unlawful, immoral or

deceitful conduct. From the above discussion, we already struck
down the complainants allegation that respondent engaged in an
unauthorized practice of law when he appeared as a lawyer for
Ramon Lee and Joseph Jeffrey Rodriguez before the Committee on

We find that a similar treatment should be given to the

complainants claim that the respondent violated paragraph4(1) of
Memorandum No. 119 when he encouraged the sales application
of Joseph Jeffrey Rodriguez despite his knowledge that his nephew
was not a qualified applicant. T

he matter of Joseph Jeffrey Rodriguezs qualifications to apply for a

sales application over lots covered by the proclaimed areas has
been resolved in the affirmative by the Secretary of the DENR in
the decision dated April 3,2004, when the DENR gave due course
to his sales application over the subject land.

We are, at this point, bound by this finding.

All told, considering the serious consequences of the penalty of

disbarment or suspension of a member of the Bar, the burden
rests on the complainant to present clear, convincing and
satisfactory proof for the Court to exercise its disciplinary powers.

The respondent generally is under no obligation to prove his/her

defense, until the burden shifts to him/her because of what the
complainant has proven.

Where no case has in the first place been proven, nothing has to
be rebutted in defense.

With this in mind, we resolve to dismiss the administrative case

against the respondent for the complainants failure to prove by
clear and convincing evidence that the former committed
unethical infractions warranting the exercise of the Courts
disciplinary power.

we DISMISS the
administrative case for violation of Rule 6.02, Rule 6.03 and Rule
1.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibility, filed against retired
Supreme Court Associate Justice Dante O. Tinga, for lack of merit.

General Bank and Trust Co. (Genbank) encountered financial

difficulties, prompting the Central Bank to extend to it emergency
loans reaching a total of P310 million.
Despite this, Genbank failed to recover and the following year
Central Bank had to issue a resolution declaring Genbank insolvent
and ordering its liquidation. A public bidding of Genbanks assets
was held; Lucio Tan Group submitted the winning bid.
Former Solicitor General Estelito P. Mendoza field a petition with
CFI praying for the courts assistance and supervision in the
liquidation as mandated by RA 265, section 29.
After EDSA I, Pres. Aquino established the PCGG to recover the
alleged ill-gotten wealth of Marcos, his family and his cronies.
Pursuant to this mandate, PCGG filed a complaint for reversion,
reconveyance, restitution, accounting, and damages against
respondents Lucio Tan Group and the Marcos family. This was
docketed as Civil Case No. 0005 of the 2nd division of the
Sandiganbayan (SB).
In connection with this, PCGG issued several writs of sequestration
on the properties of the Lucio Tan Group.
Lucio Tan Group questioned the writs through petitions for
certiorari, prohibition, and injunction with the SC.
The latter referred the cases to the SB for proper disposition. In
these cases docketed as Civil Case Nos. 0096-0099 Lucio Tan
Group was represented by their counsel, former SolGen Estelito
Mendoza who has then resumed private practice.
PCGG, invoking Rule 6.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility
(CPR), filed motions to disqualify Atty. Mendoza as counsel for
respondents in Civil Case Nos. 0005 & 0096-0099.
The motions allege that Atty. Mendoza intervened in the
acquisition of Genbank by the Lucio Tan Group when, in his
capacity as then SolGen, he advised the Central Banks officials on
the procedure to bring about Genbanks liquidation& appeared as
counsel for the central Bank in connection with its petition for
assistance in the liquidation.
SB denied the motion to disqualify Atty. Mendoza in Civil Case No.
0005 for PCGGs failure to prove the existence of an inconsistency
between Mendozas former function as SolGen and his present
employment as counsel of the Lucio Tan group; it also ruled that
Mendozas appearance as counsel for respondents Tan, et al. was
beyond the one-year prohibited period under Section 7(b) of
Republic Act No. 6713 since he ceased to be Solicitor General in
the year 1986. PCGG did not file a MFR.

When Civil Case Nos. 0096-0099 were transferred from the SBs
2nd Division to the 5th Division, the latter also denied the motion
to disqualify. PCGGs MFR was denied.
Hence this petition.

1. WON this case involves the adverse interest aspect of Rule 6.03
2. WON there exists a congruent-interest conflict sufficient to disqualify
respondent Mendoza from representing the Lucio Tan Group.
2a. WON Atty. Mendozas act of advising the Central Bank on the legal
procedure to liquidate Genbank is included within the concept of matter
under Rule 6.03. NO
2b. WON the intervention of Atty. Mendoza in the liquidation of Genbank is
significant and substantial. NO

Ratio American Bar Association Formal Opinion 342s definition of

matter : any discrete, isolatable act as well as identifiable
transaction or conduct involving a particular situation and specific
party, and not merely an act of drafting, enforcing or interpreting
government or agency procedures, regulations or laws, or briefing
abstract principles of law.

Reasoning Based on PCGGs case for disqualification, the matter

or the act of Atty. Mendoza as Solicitor General involved here is
advising the Central Bank, on how to proceed with the said
banks liquidation and even filing the petition for its liquidation
with the CFI of Manila.

The procedure of liquidation is given in black and white in Republic

Act No. 265, sec. 29. Said legal provision provides for the role of
the SolGen in proceedings upon insolvency.

Also, CPR Rule 6.03 cannot apply to respondent Mendoza because

his alleged intervention while a SolGen in Sp. Proc. No. 107812
(liquidation of Genbank) is an intervention on a matter different
from the matter involved in Civil Case No. 0096 (sequestration of
the stocks in Allied Bank, the successor of Genbank, on the ground
that they are ill-gotten).

Ratio in light of the history of CPR Rule 6.03, the 2 nd meaning is

more appropriate to give to the word intervention. The
intervention cannot be insubstantial and insignificant.

Reasoning 2 interpretations of the intervene (basis: Webster):

1. intervene includes participation in a proceeding even if the
intervention is irrelevant or has no effect or little influence.
2. intervene only includes an act of a person who has the
power to influence the subject proceedings.

The petition in the special proceedings is an initiatory pleading,

hence, it has to be signed by Atty. Mendoza as the then sitting
Solicitor General. The record is arid as to the actual participation of
respondent Mendoza in the subsequent proceedings.

The principal role of the court in this proceeding for dissolution is

to assist the Central Bank in determining claims of creditors
against the Genbank. The role of the court is not strictly as a court
of justice but as an agent to assist the Central Bank in determining
the claims of creditors. In such a proceeding, the participation of
the Office of the Solicitor General is not that of the usual court
litigator protecting the interest of government.
Balancing Policy Considerations

CPR Rule 6.03 represents a commendable effort on the part of the

IBP to upgrade the ethics of lawyers in the government service. It
should not be interpreted to cause a chilling effect on government
recruitment of able legal talent.

At present, it is already difficult for government to match

compensation offered by the private sector and it is unlikely that
government will be able to reverse that situation. It is true that the
only card that the government may play to recruit lawyers is have
them defer present income in return for the experience and
contacts that can later be exchanged for higher income in private
practice. To make government service more difficult to exit can
only make it less appealing to enter.

In interpreting Rule 6.03, the Court also cast a harsh eye on its use
as a litigation tactic to harass opposing counsel as well as deprive
his client of competent legal representation. The danger that the
rule will be misused to bludgeon an opposing counsel is not a
mere guesswork.

Similarly, the Court in interpreting Rule 6.03 was not unconcerned

with the prejudice to the client which will be caused by its
misapplication. It cannot be doubted that granting a
disqualification motion causes the client to lose not only the law
firm of choice, but probably an individual lawyer in whom the
client has confidence.

The Court has to consider also the possible adverse effect of a

truncated reading of the rule on the official independence of
lawyers in the government service.

No less significant a consideration is the deprivation of the former

government lawyer of the freedom to exercise his profession.
Given the current state of our law, the disqualification of a former
government lawyer may extend to all members of his law firm.

As well observed, the accuracy of gauging public perceptions is a

highly speculative exercise at best which can lead to untoward
results. Notably, the appearance of impropriety theory has been
rejected in the 1983 ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct.

Also the switching sides concern does not cast a shadow in the
case at bar. The danger that confidential official information might
be divulged is nil, if not inexistent. There are no inconsistent
sides to be bothered about in the case at bar. In lawyering for
the Lucio Tan Group, Atty. Mendoza is indirectly defending the
validity of the action of Central Bank in liquidating Genbank and
selling it later to Allied Bank. Their interests coincide instead of
Huyssen vs. Guttierez

In 1995, the complainant and her three sons, all American citizens,
applied for Philippine Visas.

The respondent who was then connected with the Bureau of

Immigration and Deportation (BID) informed them that they
needed to deposit a certain amount of money in order that their
visa applications will be approved.

Complainant then deposited with respondent on six different

occasions from April 1995 to April 1996 the total amount of US

However, the respondent refused to issue copies of official receipts

despite the demand of the complainant. After one year,
complainant demanded from respondent the return of US $20,000
who assured her that said amount would be returned.

Instead of returning the money, the respondent issued postdated

checks which were dishonored.

After respondent made several unfulfilled promises to return the

said amount, a complaint for disbarment was filed in the
Commission on Bar Discipline of the Integrated Bar of the
Issue: Whether or not Atty. Guttierez should be disbarred for the act
complained of in the case
Held: YES

The respondent was DISBARRED from the practice of law and

ordered to return the amount he received from the complainant
with legal interest from his receipt of the money until payment.

Respondents acts of asking money from complainant in

consideration of the latters pending application for visas is
violative of Rule 1.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibility,
which prohibits members of the Bar from engaging or participating
in any unlawful, dishonest,or deceitful acts.

Moreover, said acts also constitute a breach of Rule 6.02 of the

Code which bars lawyers in government service from promoting
their private interests.

Promotion of private interests includes soliciting gifts or anything

of monetary value in any transaction requiring the approval of his
office or which may be affected by the functions of his office.

As a lawyer, who was also a public officer, respondent miserably

failed to cope with strict demands and high standards of the legal

WHEREFORE, Resolution No. XVIII-2008-649 dated December 11,

2008, of the IBP, which found FRED L. GUTIERREZ guilty of GROSS
of Ninety Thousand Pesos (P90,000.00) to the complainant
immediately from receipt of this decision with interest.
After having arranged the sale of steel sheets for Mrs Siy, the latter became
implicated ina civil case with the complainant PNB.
After having stop employment with PNB, respondent Atty. Cedo appeared
as counsel for Mrs. Siy.
A similar situation also happened when spouses Almeda were implicated to
a case with complainant PNB counsel for Sps. Almeda is theCedo, Ferrer,
Maynigo & Associates. Atty. Cedo was AVP of the Asset Management group
of complainant bank, where such loan transaction of Sps. Almeda came
under his purview.
Respondent asserted that in the former case, he did not participate in the
litigation before the court, while the latter, it was another partner of the
firm that handle the case.
IBP made its reportand recommendation for suspension for having
deliberate intent to devise ways and means to attract as clients former
borrowers of complainant bank since he was in the best position to seethe
legal weaknesses of his former employer
ISSUE: Whether or not respondent Atty. Cedo be held administratively

According to Canon 6.03 of the Code of Professional Responsibility,

A lawyer shall not, after leaving government service, accept
engagement or employment in connection with any matter in
which he had intervened while in said service.

Having been an executive of complainant bank, respondent sought

to litigate as counsel for the opposite side, acase against his
former employer involving a transaction which he formerly
handled while stillan employee of complainant, violated said

ACCORDINGLY, this Court resolves to SUSPEND respondent ATTY.

TELESFORO S. CEDO from the practice of law for THREE (3) YEARS,
effective immediately.